the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

Archive for April, 2012

Sea Ice – Because I Promised

Posted by Jeff Id on April 30, 2012

This post is in fairness to the sea ice doom mongers. Some have written that sea ice is the Achilles heel of the non-alarmist. The implication is that the melting is unequivocal and absolutely destructive to the skeptic argument. I’m not an idiot, so why keep posting on sea ice?

Because my opinion is that sea ice isn’t melting from global atmospheric warming – at least not in a major way. My Mrs. Cleo impersonation, which is no better than Klimatologists, is that we will see a little sea ice egg-on-the-face data in the next 5 years. Still, the data is the data, and I did promise to perform the same cutoff for the Antarctic as I had done for the Arctic and provide some kind of global single year ice trend.

Unfortunately, the Antarctic has a strong circumpolar current which catches sea ice in a strange pattern that is not suited to latitudinal cutoffs. Big deal, I knew about this result before I said I would do it.

The result is explained below. I cut off all data below -65 degrees Latitude South and above 72 degrees Latitude North.

Antarctic Sea Ice

Arctic Sea Ice

From those plots I excluded all Antarctic sea ice North of -65 latitude, an admittedly pro AGW choice as the vast majority of the ice in the Antarctic vanishes even south of that line.

My calculation for the southern hemisphere single year ice trend is:

Read the rest of this entry »

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No Time Part XX

Posted by Jeff Id on April 30, 2012

I’m going to try and do something soon but I have no time to blog at all.    tAV still has quite a few readers who stop by every day so if anyone would like to contribute, send me a Word doc by email.



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Contest — Ten Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

Posted by Jeff Id on April 22, 2012

Earth day is here again.   Twice as many penguins as we thought, polar bear population is up, both Arctic and global sea ice extents are normal, what should we do to celebrate?

Here are a few ideas I had:

  • Fly penguins to the north pole to feed the polar bears.
  • Fly polar bears south to give them a new habitat.
  • Eat a polar bear steak.
  • Shoot a can of freon.
  • Run the heat and air conditioning at the same time.
  • Add sulfur to your diesel fuel.
  • Ship Al Gore to the Antarctic on a 747, by way of the North pole.
  • Drive fast to the store in low gear.
  • Feed beans to Rosie O’Donnell.
  • Ignore it.

Who has the best idea?!

Posted in Uncategorized | 32 Comments »

Gotta Be Kidding

Posted by Jeff Id on April 16, 2012

In an article titled, “Himalayan glaciers actually GAINING ice, space scans show An inconvenient truth” Lewis Page of the Register writes:

The study was carried out by comparing two sets of space data, the first gathered by instruments aboard the space shuttle Endeavour in 2000 and the second by the French SPOT5 satellite in 2008. The results were unequivocal. Across the targeted 5,615km2 region of the Karakorum mountains lying on the Chinese border with India and Pakistan, the glaciers had gained substantial amounts of mass by the time the second survey was carried out. Satellite pictures had previously shown the glaciers there spreading to cover more area, but some climate scientists had argued that they might nonetheless be losing ice by becoming thinner: this has now been disproven.

 “This is a solid, high-grade measurement,” glaciologist Graham Cogley commented, reviewing the paper published in Nature Geoscience. The study was led by Julie Gardelle of Grenoble uni in France.

Slight mass gain of Karakoram glaciers in the early twenty-first century

Assessments of the state of health of Hindu-Kush–Karakoram–Himalaya glaciers and their contribution to regional hydrology and global sea-level rise suffer from a severe lack of observations1. The globally averaged mass balance of glaciers and ice caps is negative1, 2, 3. An anomalous gain of mass has been suggested for the Karakoram glaciers2, 4, 5, 6, but was not confirmed by recent estimates of mass balance. Furthermore, numerous glacier surges in the region that lead to changes in glacier length and velocity7, 8, 9, 10, 11 complicate the interpretation of the available observations. Here, we calculate the regional mass balance of glaciers in the central Karakoram between 1999 and 2008, based on the difference between two digital elevation models. We find a highly heterogeneous spatial pattern of changes in glacier elevation, which shows that ice thinning and ablation at high rates can occur on debris-covered glacier tongues. The regional mass balance is just positive at +0.11±0.22 m yr−1 water equivalent and in agreement with the observed reduction of river runoff that originates in this area12. Our measurements confirm an anomalous mass balance in the Karakoram region and indicate that the contribution of Karakoram glaciers to sea-level rise was −0.01 mm yr−1 for the period from 1999 to 2008, 0.05 mm yr−1 lower than suggested before13.

Lower than ‘suggested’ before.   I suppose that in newspeak, suggested is a euphemism for ‘screamed from the highest mountain’.   I have a hard time keeping up with the kids new slang these days.


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What People Don’t Want to Know About Energy

Posted by Jeff Id on April 15, 2012

Guest Post by Thomas Fuller

I’m well on my way to winning a small wager with a friend about my new blogging venture, 3,000 Quads ( It’s an unusual bet–I’m betting that I will be religiously ignored by the members of the climate consensus. We’ve never gotten along–I’ve had real battles with Joe Romm, Tim Lambert, Chris Colose, Michael Tobis and the minions that venture forth from their sites to hound and harass those of us who don’t agree with them. But that’s not the reason.

And it’s not because the central message of my weblog conflicts in any way with climate science. I have written 65 posts charting the future of energy consumption for the rest of the century (well, partially–I’m a long ways from finished). And the numbers are sobering and show us why we need to take this climate stuff seriously. The title is a clue–I predict that the world will be burning 3,000 quads every year in 2075, and can pretty much show in detail how we’ll be using 1,000 quads a year in 2030. (For reference, the world burned 500 quads in 2010.) This is far higher than the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration projects–their total is 721 quads in 2030. The difference between their estimate and mine is roughly equivalent to the amount of energy consumed by both the US and China last year. And I keep pounding on the point that if all of that extra energy is provided by coal, the effects on our climate will be severe.
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History of Sea Ice

Posted by Jeff Id on April 13, 2012

This article is offered by Jonathan Drake.  It discusses the unusual changes in trend noted in sea ice at various points of the historic record paying particular attention to the satellite data.   I think it is worth posting, but I have varied opinions and questions regarding the different sea ice datasets displayed here.  To me it could be characterized as ‘unusual trends’, as something is certainly up in the longer term combination of data.

Rather than reformat the PDF, I have uploaded it here: Could Instrumentation Drift Account for Arctic Sea Ice Decline:



Posted in Uncategorized | 27 Comments »

Antarctic Sea Ice Area by Latitude

Posted by Jeff Id on April 12, 2012

The following plots depict annual sea ice area for the Antarctic.  This is important in that we are attempting to isolate the response of annually melting sea ice to temperature.   Despite the attack on this method by the warmanistas, it does have value in that it is a reasonable proxy for how sea ice responds to temperature.

Readers will recall that I masked all Arctic sea ice North of 72 degrees out of the calculation and looked at areas outside of that circle.   Ice south of 72 degrees melts every year.  Critics, not understanding what was done, stated that the choice was arbitrary and asked that I mask all ice north of -72 degrees in the Antarctic and repeat the experiment.   I have agreed, except that the choice of latidude was not arbitrary in the Arctic.  It was based on the following graphs which show the true latitude at which Antarctic sea ice is known to melt every year for the satellite record.

The plot/video indicates that complete sea ice melt in the Antarctic occurs at approximately -65 degrees latitude.

This sets the stage for the next step.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

Bookends and Separations

Posted by Jeff Id on April 12, 2012

Guest Post by Thomas Fuller

Once again Jeff has handed over both gavel and podium for a guest post from a Lukewarmer–guess he’s trying to keep you all on your toes…

I want to talk about the brief period that will be known going forward as the Global Warming scare, and the inevitable atomization of the efforts on both sides following its closure.

Probably all of you who have followed this issue have your own starting date for this period of heightened interest in climate change and global warming–for many it would begin with Hansen’s testimony before the Senate in 1988, while for others it might go back to Margaret Thatcher’s need to face down the coal miners’ unions back in the 80s. For me, however, it begins with Phil Jones’ 4-page article in Nature about UHI.

This short paper, cited almost maniacally by thousands of other papers since its publication in 1990, served several important functions. First, it showed that climate had become political. Written in response to those claiming that the urban heat island effect had contaminated the temperature record, Jones’ paper was an attempt to squash disagreement.

Second, it showed that science was not as important as the politics. The stations Jones used for his paper did not have the stable histories he claimed for them. (He probably didn’t know this at the time of publication–but he found out very quickly and refused to issue a correction.) Fighting the critics meant that the flaws in the science needed to be hidden.

Third, like almost everything that has happened in the debate since then, Jones’ paper triggered a chain of unintended consequences that led in a manner suitable for a Greek tragedy straight to Jones’ own request to colleagues to delete emails, and was part of an enabling sequence that contributed to Mann’s decisions regarding the Hockey Stick and even, 20 years later, to Peter Gleick’s astonishing theft and fabrication of the Heartland Institute’s documents and strategy.

Everything that the climate consensus team has done in the past 20 years has contained elements of the same fundamental errors in thinking and strategy–from GreenPeace telling us they knew where we lived to No Pressure videos blowing up school children. There are thousands of examples that could be brought forth to show that their strategy had no human heart and no mechanism for enlisting participation–their goal was forcing opponents into silent submission instead. This 20-year war was fought at a soulless, corporate level, with campaigns designed and implemented by the media masters and mistresses of large environmental NGOs and it showed. From fighting World Bank loans for a South African coal plant to wilder statements of how few people the planet could sustainably carry, these people showed an appalling lack of humanity and an amazing excess of energy.

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Dogs, Puppies and True Skepticism

Posted by Jeff Id on April 10, 2012

I reluctantly bring up this topic. I’m tired of moderating the blog, even though it has no new posts for a record number of days.

Several other popular climate bloggers and even some climate scientists have made the point that those who don’t understand the second law of thermodynamics are somehow “damaging to the ’cause’ of skepticism”. This whole line of argument smacks of motive to me, and motive is the antithesis of scientific skepticism. Why readers of those blogs quietly put up with that, is beyond me.

Therefore, by nature, I must reject the argument.

My rejection is not due to the fact that the flat stupidity of the second law argument doesn’t have a deleterious affect on public impression of those of us labeled in international media as skeptics or deniers, but rather because anyone who understands anything about physics can spot the crack-pottery of those individuals who reject thermodynamics. Our public disagreement of the magnitude, danger and response to anthropogenic global warming is between those who understand physics and math, and nobody else. On both sides, professional scientists know the difference between the dogs and the puppies and the puppies are yapping too much.

These pretenders who have stepped in with this nonsense about back radiation being a violation of the second law, are just people who know some words and have motives. Not an equation to their credit, yet thermodynamics is overturned.

Claiming to overturn human understanding without equations, is different from the bystanders of the population which don’t have the background to understand thermodynamic reality.

If AGW is as severe as the IPCC repeately states, I am completely certain that most readers here want to know the truth. Then the discussion could shift to proper responses. Right now, nothing, and I mean really NOTHING, indicates that AGW is anything but moderate or even beneficial. Readers are welcome to disagree with that as well. For those extremist environmental types who believe everything humans do is automatic poison, beware, there is a middle ground. Change is not always bad, although in the US we know now that change we can believe in, is pretty clearly bad.

I am literally pissed off that this blog has been shut down by a person/people with a motivation. Even if they believe their nonsense, that is nothing but a lack of self-realization of their own crack-pottery. If they had a lick of courtesy, they would allow us to continue discussing actual science freely and agree to take their useless nonsense elsewhere rather than spam a science blog for months.

In case you one of those who reads about the non-existence of back-radiation and are wondering which is right, basic thermodynamics is not in question anywhere in science. Not one bit. The absoluteness of this statement does NOT contradict proper skepticism.

Some things are known.

For instance, we can all agree, by definition, in an Earthly frame of reference, down is down and up is up.

Were that not correct, the words down and up would have different meaning.

I’m tired, the second law backradiation bullshit needs to go away until a proper mathematical foundation supports it. Those who claim it is ‘damaging’ to the cause, need to consider how similar their proclamations sound to the proprietors of Real Climate and climategate. The scientific discussion is not with the public, although that is a good place to make points, the scientific discussion is with scientists, of all fields.

And on that front, true skepticism is unquestionably taking a firm foothold.

Posted in Uncategorized | 146 Comments »

Sea Ice Code

Posted by Jeff Id on April 3, 2012

A little cleanup of code for gridded sea ice.

Download a free software called FileZilla and copy sea ice files to a known folder.

The following code is a mathematically clean download and summation of gridded microwave satellited data.  For the north the pole-hole (area not observed by the satellites) is infilled to the maximum value for its entire timeframe.   For the south, the pole hole is not relevant.  Two points of the 12000 plus day record are removed in the south and all points are kept in the north.   Results are visually comparable  to the UIUC cryosphere page.  There isn’t much to improve about this for accuracy except for pole hole infilling or an unknown error.

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The Air Vent on Moderation

Posted by Jeff Id on April 3, 2012

Well in 3 1/2 years of blogging, millions of views and 45000 comments, the Air Vent is now comment moderated. This situation was caused by a single individual, who’s repetitive nonsense commentary and name changing bypassed the spam filter.   Doug accomplished all of this while claiming to have overturned basic thermodynamics without a single equation or any apparent recognition of where his blathering contradicts thermodynamics.

We will no longer discuss or even acknowledge his fake radiation nonsense here.  You may however, politely tell him he is not welcome here below.    If Doug decides to accept our wishes, I will again turn off moderation of comments.

Jeff Condon

Posted in Uncategorized | 35 Comments »

Northern Hemisphere f11, f13

Posted by Jeff Id on April 2, 2012

I have quietly been spending some more hours of free time on sea ice and have a ton of data to present.  Previously, we found that there was a nearly statistically significant difference in trend between satellite NOAA 17 and 13 that would create a spurious trend increase.  In addition, we found a fairly strong offset in the data which would tend to go in the opposite direction.  Post here.

Now I’ve got a quick comparison of NOAA11 and 13 sea ice instruments which have an overlap only 6 months long.  In this dataset, the trend is in the opposite direction.  Below is a plot of the various satellites in the Arctic.

The plot below shows the overlap region of f13-f11 satellites.

The next graph shows a large nearly statistically significant POSITIVE trend between the NOAA13 sat and the previous #11.

Recall that there was a nearly statistically significant negative trend in the NOAA 13-17 transition.

The only things to conclude from this is that the overlap regions of satellite data don’t have a trend bias in the same direction and there is not enough match between the satellite changes to reliably be within a two-sigma trend. Still, that is more solid than what I have seen around the Internet.

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments »