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Old 20th August 2008, 07:10 PM   #1
AOK Tiger
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Anthopogenic Global Warming Myth or Real ?

I know this is revisiting old territory but I vacillate on this issue so often it deserved another look.

I used to be a strong Anthopogenic (Man Caused) Global Warming (AGW) Skeptic

Sheer weight of numbers of reputable scientists who agreed that AGW was real convinced me there was something to it.

Now I’m not so sure …

Global temperatures have not increased in the past 8 years.. many people are starting to rethink wether AGW does exist.

Here is a good un-hysterical example.

http://xtronics.com/reference/globalwarming.htm

The simple thing is.. we constantly ask for evidence here.. the evidence for AGW is getting thinner and thinner.

Any one here who still believes in AGW ?

Last edited by AOK Tiger; 20th August 2008 at 07:14 PM.
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Old 21st August 2008, 03:04 AM   #2
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Mod WarningMoved from General Skepticism.
Responding to this mod box in thread will be off topic Posted By:jmercer
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Old 21st August 2008, 03:25 AM   #3
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The global warming folks think that the man's output of CO2 is causing the climate to grow significantly warmer due to a ill named� "green-house" effect. (The glass in a green-house prevents�convection -- obviously� CO2 �does not limit convection and its effect on global temperature should go by a different name.) � This warming is referred to as AGW(Anthropogenic Global Warming). The word 'anthropogenic' meaning 'caused by man'. The warmers think that the slight warming seen in lower troposphere satellite data above is in error and problematic ground station temperature measurements that show a slightly larger warming trend is caused almost entirely by a slight elevation in CO2 levels. The warmers state that solar effects are insignificant.
It is not ill named, it is an attempt to describe something that is highly complex with a simple metaphor. The 'leaky bucket' effect that someone mentioned here the other day would also be a reasonable metaphor, but, once again, there are no big, leaky buckets floating around in the sky.

The 'solar effects' statement is slightly misleading. The sun is primary driver of the planets temperature. What is of interest is what is changing the temperature.

There have been several problems to date with the satellite record, too, since it is not actually a direct measurement, but inferred from readings. The UAH record has had to be updated several times. That's not to say that it's wrong now, but it has been just as problematic as the ground station readings.
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Old 21st August 2008, 04:25 AM   #4
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I am on the fence leaning towards AGW, the data is what it is, and it is what we have to work with. It will get better as time goes by and we will get a clearer picture. I think that despite what the shills who work for big oil have to say we should try to switch off the burning of fossil feuls. If the trends of warming continue it could lead to serious drought in the Midwest of the USA. that would be bad for me.

AGW sceptics seems to be playing some strange games to amke their point.

PS One strange game mentioned above, AGW sceptics scream about how the sattelite data supports them, until it doesn't.

Lake sediments seem to show an overall warming trend.
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Old 21st August 2008, 06:07 AM   #5
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First, you have to prove that the increase in CO2 is caused by humans - the venting of CO2 by volcanoes (including those under the ocean) and geysers and other natural sources (and also the natural absorption or sinking of CO2) is a estimate that defies error analysis. To what error band are we certain of the amount of emission of CO2 by natural causes?
That's just wrong. It's quite possible to measure the content of CO2. It's also quite possible to estimate how much we are producing. It's also possible to measure the 'anthropogenic' component using a method similar to carbon dating. Volcanoes and other sources could be adding extra CO2, but volcanic activity doesn't seem to be any different now to what it was, but the amount of CO2 we are producing certainly is. A lot of work has been put into answering this question, and the answer is pretty clear, it's us.
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Old 21st August 2008, 06:52 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Aussie Thinker View Post
Global temperatures have not increased in the past 8 years.. many people are starting to rethink wether AGW does exist.
The year to year variation in global temperature is 0.5 deg or more, the expected temperature rise per year is only 0.02 deg. Over a short 5-10 year period you can buck the trend simply by starting on a warmer then average year, or ending of a cooler then average one.

There are also a lot of poorly developed trend lines floating around the blogshpere. The correct way to do the trend line is to take a long period of data, 50-100 years, and calculate its trend and then look at just the last few year. This is still subject to the error I mentioned above but it keeps it to a minimum. When you do the trend this way you still get a positive, though slightly flattened trend.
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Old 21st August 2008, 09:32 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Aussie Thinker
Global temperatures have not increased in the past 8 years
I take it you read an old article and really mean 9? This falsehood is based on using a spike year (1999, unusually warm due to el nino) as a starting point.

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many people are starting to rethink wether AGW does exist.
Not people who matter, namely expert scientists.

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The simple thing is.. we constantly ask for evidence here.. the evidence for AGW is getting thinner and thinner.
Maybe in the alternate universe you occupy, but not in the real one.
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Old 21st August 2008, 09:52 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Aussie Thinker View Post
....a good un-hysterical example.

http://xtronics.com/reference/globalwarming.htm

The simple thing is.. we constantly ask for evidence here.. the evidence for AGW is getting thinner and thinner.

Any one here who still believes in AGW ?
Warmers Believe in the Great Warming To Come, the Sliding Ten Year Forecast of Doom.

Cognitive Dissonance at work, likely.


Last edited by mhaze; 21st August 2008 at 09:58 AM.
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Old 21st August 2008, 09:58 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by mhaze View Post
Warmers Believe in the Great Warming To Come, the Sliding Ten Year Forecast of Doom.

Cognitive Dissonance at work, likely.

http://www.internationalskeptics.com...460913405e.png
mhaze, glad you're here. If anyone can convince folks that the anti-AGW argument is without merit, you can.

You'll be doing the pro-AGW posters a great favor by providing them with a shooting gallery of erroneous arguments to knock down.
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Old 21st August 2008, 10:17 AM   #10
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I can only speculate what the source of the information in mhaze’s plot is, but it looks like the same rehashed and debunked argument that Hansen’s model must have been flawed because when it's fed incorrect CO2 emissions it doesn't produce accurate results. The problem with this particular line of reasoning should be obvious…
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Old 21st August 2008, 10:32 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Aussie Thinker View Post
Any one here who still believes in AGW ?
It often helps to separate two issues:

1) are global temperatures increasing (and/or is the climate changing in some other unusually rapid way), and, if the answer is yes,

2) is the change caused by human activity.


I'm not an expert in this topic, but from what I know it seems very unlikely that the answer to 1) is negative. Arctic sea ice, the opening of a northwest passage, glaciers retreating, and other highly visible evidence is alone nearly enough to convince me, and then there is satellite data, average ground-based measurements, etc., all of which indicate increasing temperatures.

As for 2), there are many good physics reasons to expect human activity and increasing CO2 concentrations to affect the climate. In my opinion (based on what limited knowledge of the topic I have) one can be reasonably confident in the theory and simulations, with the caveat that the system is highly complex and non-linear. So while I don't think the results are rock solid, I do think they are largely correct. Given that the climate is indeed changing and that our best simulations indicate that the reason is anthropomorphic, the burden of proof lies very heavily on skeptics.

How to apply this conclusion to public policy is another question, but that's not what you asked.

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Old 21st August 2008, 12:21 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Aussie Thinker View Post
I know this is revisiting old territory but I vacillate on this issue so often it deserved another look.

I used to be a strong Anthopogenic (Man Caused) Global Warming (AGW) Skeptic

Sheer weight of numbers of reputable scientists who agreed that AGW was real convinced me there was something to it.

Now I’m not so sure …

Global temperatures have not increased in the past 8 years.. many people are starting to rethink wether AGW does exist.

Here is a good un-hysterical example.

http://xtronics.com/reference/globalwarming.htm

The simple thing is.. we constantly ask for evidence here.. the evidence for AGW is getting thinner and thinner.

Any one here who still believes in AGW ?
D. KOUTSOYIANNIS, A. EFSTRATIADIS, N. MAMASSIS & A. CHRISTOFIDES “On the credibility of climate predictions” Hydrological Sciences–Journal–des Sciences Hydrologiques, 53 (2008).

Abstract “Geographically distributed predictions of future climate, obtained through climate models, are widely used in hydrology and many other disciplines, typically without assessing their reliability. Here we compare the output of various models to temperature and precipitation observations from eight stations with long (over 100 years) records from around the globe. The results show that models perform poorly, even at a climatic (30-year) scale. Thus local model projections cannot be credible, whereas a common argument that models can perform better at larger spatial scales is unsupported.”

Climate models have no predictive value.
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Old 21st August 2008, 01:06 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by mhaze View Post
D. KOUTSOYIANNIS, A. EFSTRATIADIS, N. MAMASSIS & A. CHRISTOFIDES “On the credibility of climate predictions” Hydrological Sciences–Journal–des Sciences Hydrologiques, 53 (2008).
I took a look, but I found myself pretty confused about something. Take a look at figures 4 and 5 in the paper. Why did they only use Albany for their comparisons with the models? I didn't find anywhere in the text where they justify that.

At least superficially it looks like they just picked the data that would give the worst agreement with climate models. There's a very large deviation among the measurements shown in figure 4, and so unless the models are very accurate in both time and space, you're always going to be able to find a bad fit with some of them. The one they picked is the one that's farthest from a gradual increase in temperature (at least by eye).

So as far as I can see, their analysis shows that climate models are very bad at predicting the climate in Albany - no more, and no less. The models might be good or predicting the climate in other locations - the paper doesn't address that (despite having all the data available for at least 7 more) - and they might be good at predicting the spatially averaged climate - the paper doesn't address that either.

Am I missing something? If not, I must say I don't find the paper very interesting.

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Old 21st August 2008, 01:23 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by mhaze View Post

Climate models have no predictive value.
Wow, such a sweeping conclusion based on *8 stations*
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Old 21st August 2008, 01:32 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by lomiller View Post
Wow, such a sweeping conclusion based on *8 stations*
Not to mention, based on just one paper.
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Old 21st August 2008, 01:33 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Piggy View Post
mhaze, glad you're here. If anyone can convince folks that the anti-AGW argument is without merit, you can.

You'll be doing the pro-AGW posters a great favor by providing them with a shooting gallery of erroneous arguments to knock down.
Indeed, every Socratic dialogue had it's dim interlocuter.
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Old 21st August 2008, 02:22 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by lomiller View Post
Wow, such a sweeping conclusion based on *8 stations*
But it wasn't - it was based on one! If you look here you can find the rest of their data (which was left out of the paper). It's clear from the plots that Albany is by far the worst fit to the models. Another odd thing is that none of the models agree with data even at the first year shown on the plots. What kind of initial conditions are they using? Normally one would set the initial conditions using data from the first year, and then run the simulation, no?

The fact that they picked the worst fit to show in their paper - without any comment that that's what they were doing - is disturbing to say the least. I would never let something like that go by as a referee. It's either dishonest, or merely strongly seems so - either way, it stinks.

If this is the level at which this kind of science gets done, no wonder it's so hard to determine the facts.

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Old 21st August 2008, 03:32 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
But it wasn't - it was based on one! If you look here you can find the rest of their data (which was left out of the paper). It's clear from the plots that Albany is by far the worst fit to the models. Another odd thing is that none of the models agree with data even at the first year shown on the plots. What kind of initial conditions are they using? Normally one would set the initial conditions using data from the first year, and then run the simulation, no?
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Old 21st August 2008, 03:44 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
But it wasn't - it was based on one! If you look here you can find the rest of their data (which was left out of the paper). It's clear from the plots that Albany is by far the worst fit to the models. Another odd thing is that none of the models agree with data even at the first year shown on the plots. What kind of initial conditions are they using? Normally one would set the initial conditions using data from the first year, and then run the simulation, no?

The fact that they picked the worst fit to show in their paper - without any comment that that's what they were doing - is disturbing to say the least. I would never let something like that go by as a referee. It's either dishonest, or merely strongly seems so - either way, it stinks.

If this is the level at which this kind of science gets done, no wonder it's so hard to determine the facts.
Stuff like this is really just trying to muddy the waters. The conclusion that human activity is warming the planet is based around one key variable - the mean surface temperature. As soon as you start making the comparisons more and more specific, e.g. by comparing to a discrete site, the models are going to perform less well. There's no news there and it certainly doesn't prove the models don't work.
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Old 22nd August 2008, 04:55 AM   #20
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mhaze, you brought this up and claimed it meant that "climate models have no predictive value". So you've obviously read the paper and understand why the problem I raised isn't an issue.

Care to comment?

Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
But it wasn't - it was based on one! If you look here you can find the rest of their data (which was left out of the paper). It's clear from the plots that Albany is by far the worst fit to the models. Another odd thing is that none of the models agree with data even at the first year shown on the plots. What kind of initial conditions are they using? Normally one would set the initial conditions using data from the first year, and then run the simulation, no?

The fact that they picked the worst fit to show in their paper - without any comment that that's what they were doing - is disturbing to say the least. I would never let something like that go by as a referee. It's either dishonest, or merely strongly seems so - either way, it stinks.

If this is the level at which this kind of science gets done, no wonder it's so hard to determine the facts.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 02:16 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by sol invictus View Post
mhaze, you brought this up and claimed it meant that "climate models have no predictive value". So you've obviously read the paper and understand why the problem I raised isn't an issue.

Care to comment?
I'm not sure what your comments add up to. They are more complaints than anything else: You don't like that he discussed Albany for a page and a half, that he only used 8 stations, that local results are not regional or global, that some of the runs were not initialized to start conditions.

We've got close to two decades of actual weather and we've got predictions from models that were published, let's go compare them and see what if any accuracy the models had. That is basically what Koutsoyiannis et al. did.

Now you don't like the "local or regional" because it is not global? Last I heard, all climate was local or regional. India, for example, is concerned about monsoon dynamics; South Texas about Gulf hurricanes and the interaction between the moist air coming in from the gulf with dry air from the West, on and on. Well, what scale of results, either spacial or geographical, should models be quantifiable examined on?
  • A 10km sided area? 100km? 1000km? 2x2 Grid points? 5x5? 20x20?
  • What timeframe? 10 years? 20? 50? 100?
  • What accuracy?
  • Should these (indelicate, politically incorrect) questions not be asked?
According to Foster, models predict 100 year climate at something like +2C plus or minus 100C due to propagation of errors compounded over time. What is your definition of accuracy?

Who decided the model runs would not be initialized to known states? Is that a complaint you have against the arthur of the paper in question here? Might want to rethink that. Where did they get their (published in the past, right? ) model runs?

Do climate models have accuracy and skill, over a defined geographical scale and time frame? What, then are these parameters, and what is the skill, the accuracy, and the proof of it ? A lot of people would like to here that one.

Only 8 stations? They said they would have liked to do more, time and money premitting. Maybe other people will pick up the ball and examine 100. I'm curious - do you seriously think the results would differ?

Koutsoyiannis et al. go further: stating not just that local predictions of the models have been falsified, but presuming that they work over longer distances and/or timeframes is unsupported.

Well informed people have noted this or made similar comments. (Trenberth, IPCC lead arthur: "IPCC does not do predictions"). Is Koutsoyiannis saying anything that has not been said before, or only trying to quantify the extent of the problem? Quantifying the extent of a problem is advancing the state of scientific understanding. If you are not just complaining about the paper, then perhaps you believe the models have a skill and predictive capability that in fact they do not have, that no knowledgable people have or should claim.

Clearly I differ your comment -
I would never let something like that go by as a referee. It's either dishonest, or merely strongly seems so - either way, it stinks. If this is the level at which this kind of science gets done, no wonder it's so hard to determine the facts.

Last edited by mhaze; 23rd August 2008 at 04:13 PM.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 06:45 PM   #22
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Old 23rd August 2008, 07:48 PM   #23
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I started out in believing strongly in AGW, and the evils of man existing based on the mountain of evidence. Then I became a bitter skeptic not believing AGW based on that mountain of evidence. Now I sit somewhere in the middle, but leaning against CO2 being the great Satan.

What I have noticed about his argument is that people pro-AGW tend to say staggeringly stupid things like everyone who doesn't believe what they do must be idiots or ideologues. Every piece of evidence against is either made up by 'shills' (although obviously if I ran an oil company, I would want to know if it was time to diversify or not, thus wanting accurate information), or simply has to be wrong, that only idiots would believe it. Some of them like to equate people who don't believe their brand of AGW to those who don't believe in evolution, which is a strikingly silly comparison (evolution has just a little more evidence and a much longer history than AGW). All the yelling about how the science is 'settled' doesn't make it true. Heck, if it was true, a whisper would do. Science doesn't get 'settled', it is always a conversation.

Anti-AGW people argue some silly (and insanely stupid) things as well, don't get me wrong, but for the most part they don't tend to be as caustic about it (with a few obvious exceptions). To say that we do nothing to the planet is silly as well, as is it silly to say that everyone who believes in AGW must be an idiot and ideologue (unless their title says otherwise).

I think we should (and we are, obviously) move away from the current use of fossil fuel, but not out of some ideological distrust of corporations, nor because I think CO2 is destroying everything.

On another note, ground stations are messed up. Very much so. But obviously that doesn't invalidate all of AGW's arguments.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 08:34 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post
I started out in believing strongly in AGW, and the evils of man existing based on the mountain of evidence. Then I became a bitter skeptic not believing AGW based on that mountain of evidence. Now I sit somewhere in the middle, but leaning against CO2 being the great Satan.

What I have noticed about his argument is that people pro-AGW tend to say staggeringly stupid things like everyone who doesn't believe what they do must be idiots or ideologues. Every piece of evidence against is either made up by 'shills' (although obviously if I ran an oil company, I would want to know if it was time to diversify or not, thus wanting accurate information), or simply has to be wrong, that only idiots would believe it. Some of them like to equate people who don't believe their brand of AGW to those who don't believe in evolution, which is a strikingly silly comparison (evolution has just a little more evidence and a much longer history than AGW). All the yelling about how the science is 'settled' doesn't make it true. Heck, if it was true, a whisper would do. Science doesn't get 'settled', it is always a conversation.

Anti-AGW people argue some silly (and insanely stupid) things as well, don't get me wrong, but for the most part they don't tend to be as caustic about it (with a few obvious exceptions). To say that we do nothing to the planet is silly as well, as is it silly to say that everyone who believes in AGW must be an idiot and ideologue (unless their title says otherwise).

I think we should (and we are, obviously) move away from the current use of fossil fuel, but not out of some ideological distrust of corporations, nor because I think CO2 is destroying everything.

On another note, ground stations are messed up. Very much so. But obviously that doesn't invalidate all of AGW's arguments.
Good comments. By the way my prior dialogue about models being unreliable and the paper referenced therein does not disprove AGW, it simply indicates models are unreliable. If some people think computer models have to be a crutchpin of their branch of their sect of the cult of AGW, that's a problem with the weakness of that version of the belief set....

Most of the nonsense comes from people who are narrowly focused on CO2.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 09:21 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post

What I have noticed about his argument is that people pro-AGW tend to say staggeringly stupid things like everyone who doesn't believe what they do must be idiots or ideologues. Every piece of evidence against is either made up by 'shills' (although obviously if I ran an oil company, I would want to know if it was time to diversify or not, thus wanting accurate information), or simply has to be wrong, that only idiots would believe it.
Have you consider the possibility that each piece of “evidence” was looked at and found to come from shills, or at the very least people not qualified in the subject? The denialist crowd routinely points to “papers” that have never appeared a serious journal, usually written by written by journalists, engineers, economists, etc.

The number of papers supporting their view published by real scientists in real journals is small enough that you can look at all of them to see in anyone has cited or followed up on. Peer review is, after all, a necessary but not sufficient condition for a quality paper.

Anti-AGW papers published in real journals and received well enough to be followed up on are literally non-existent.


Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post
Some of them like to equate people who don't believe their brand of AGW to those who don't believe in evolution,
The similarity is that IDers and AGW denialists both use “sell the controversy” techniques extensively. There simply is no controversy in the scientific community, the only place any real debate over the basics exist is in the blogsphere. There is of course ongoing research but the basics have long since stopped being debated in the literature. The idea is that most people won’t bother to read the actual science, so present a faux controversy and they will never know.

Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post
(evolution has just a little more evidence and a much longer history than AGW).
The warming effect CO2 on the atmosphere was first documented in a paper by Arrhenius 110 years ago, so it doesn’t go back quite as far as evolution, but it’s not that far off. Here is a nice summary of the history of the science of global warming and of the current “debate” from science historian Naomi Oreskes.



Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post
All the yelling about how the science is 'settled' doesn't make it true. Heck, if it was true, a whisper would do. Science doesn't get 'settled', it is always a conversation.
You could make the same argument in support of intelligent design. It’s certainly true that science is always subject to change when new evidence comes along, that it not justification for presenting issues like evolution or AGW where there is little or no debate going on in the scientific literature.



Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post

On another note, ground stations are messed up. Very much so. But obviously that doesn't invalidate all of AGW's arguments.
That’s another false argument. Obviously ground stations that were not originally designed with looking at long term climate will have some issues, but no data is perfect, the question is whether it’s good enough. No one has shown any of the blogshpere complains about ground station data are anything but specious, and it is in very good agreement with satellite data where the two overlap. This is simply the global warming equivalent of IDers questioning the fossil record.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 09:25 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by mhaze View Post

Most of the nonsense comes from people who are narrowly focused on CO2.
No. ALL the nonsense comes from people specifically looking for reasons not to curtail CO2 emissions and will grasp any available straw to try and avoid dealing with reality.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 09:25 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post
I started out in believing strongly in AGW, and the evils of man existing based on the mountain of evidence. Then I became a bitter skeptic not believing AGW based on that mountain of evidence. Now I sit somewhere in the middle, but leaning against CO2 being the great Satan.

What I have noticed about his argument is that people pro-AGW tend to say staggeringly stupid things like everyone who doesn't believe what they do must be idiots or ideologues. Every piece of evidence against is either made up by 'shills' (although obviously if I ran an oil company, I would want to know if it was time to diversify or not, thus wanting accurate information), or simply has to be wrong, that only idiots would believe it. Some of them like to equate people who don't believe their brand of AGW to those who don't believe in evolution, which is a strikingly silly comparison (evolution has just a little more evidence and a much longer history than AGW). All the yelling about how the science is 'settled' doesn't make it true. Heck, if it was true, a whisper would do. Science doesn't get 'settled', it is always a conversation.

Anti-AGW people argue some silly (and insanely stupid) things as well, don't get me wrong, but for the most part they don't tend to be as caustic about it (with a few obvious exceptions). To say that we do nothing to the planet is silly as well, as is it silly to say that everyone who believes in AGW must be an idiot and ideologue (unless their title says otherwise).

I think we should (and we are, obviously) move away from the current use of fossil fuel, but not out of some ideological distrust of corporations, nor because I think CO2 is destroying everything.

On another note, ground stations are messed up. Very much so. But obviously that doesn't invalidate all of AGW's arguments.
Just look at the science.

Screw everything else, forget all the rhetoric and politics, look at the science.

For instance, look here:

Science Daily's climate page

Now, what you're looking at there is a continually updated overview of peer-reviewed climate science being published right now worldwide.

No blogs, no politics, no ************. Just the peer-reviewed science.

Now you tell me... what does the current science tell us?
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Old 23rd August 2008, 09:44 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by Piggy View Post
Just look at the science.

Screw everything else, forget all the rhetoric and politics, look at the science.

For instance, look here:

Science Daily's climate page

Now, what you're looking at there is a continually updated overview of peer-reviewed climate science being published right now worldwide.

No blogs, no politics, no ************. Just the peer-reviewed science.

Now you tell me... what does the current science tell us?
Yup at the end of the day it’s all about the science. If the peer reviewed science were to do a 180 tomorrow I’d switch my position without hesitation.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 10:00 PM   #29
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That's funny, because every time I look at the science, the pro-AGW people say I should only look at their science because everyone else has in some way been funded by an oil company (or someone who owns stock in an oil company) and thus must be biased, while their own science is funded by groups like the WWF and Greenpeace (which the anti-AGW people say invalidates it). Just looking at the science got me to stop being a total supporter of the main AGW theory (which, as I understand it, is that the current climate change is very, very bad, and mostly our fault... Or at least the fault of the United States).

There is a LOT of science out there and as far as I've seen there really is debate (not about if there has been any human influence on our climate because obviously there has bee, but on how much, how exactly we did, the dangers, when/if/how we can stop it, etc.)

I know how this conversation plays out now. One side links to a lot of papers, then the other side pokes holes in it, linking to their own papers, and I end up doing a lot of reading and a lot of math (which I really hate no matter how useful I find understanding), just for me to come back again to maybe (after a long and blood pressure doubling trip). Oh wait! I know! I just said that the other side has papers, so now someone gets to say how full of holes those papers are or issue some 'challenge' to find some specific paper addressing some specific part of a different paper.

Or do we just start saying that I obviously haven't really looked at the science and must be an idiot or ideologue? Do we go through everything I wrote looking for errors in science or grammar? How many excuses can one find to dismiss me?

I'm not even saying that either side must be wrong, but that the issue is not so clear cut as to question people's intelligence based on which side they fall on.

Sorry Piggy, I almost forgot to address your link specifically. Why would I comment on a paper that has yet to be published? How do I know if it is good science or not? Besides, that isn't the only place that science is done is it?

Oh joy, after reading some articles, even some of the people quoted on that site aren't all that certain about strong AGW. And I'm back to the fence and requesting a saddle...
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Old 23rd August 2008, 10:00 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post
I started out in believing strongly in AGW, and the evils of man existing based on the mountain of evidence. Then I became a bitter skeptic not believing AGW based on that mountain of evidence. Now I sit somewhere in the middle, but leaning against CO2 being the great Satan.

What I have noticed about his argument is that people pro-AGW tend to say staggeringly stupid things like everyone who doesn't believe what they do must be idiots or ideologues. Every piece of evidence against is either made up by 'shills' (although obviously if I ran an oil company, I would want to know if it was time to diversify or not, thus wanting accurate information), or simply has to be wrong, that only idiots would believe it. Some of them like to equate people who don't believe their brand of AGW to those who don't believe in evolution, which is a strikingly silly comparison (evolution has just a little more evidence and a much longer history than AGW). All the yelling about how the science is 'settled' doesn't make it true. Heck, if it was true, a whisper would do. Science doesn't get 'settled', it is always a conversation.
I have no idea why people are anti-agw, unless they tell me why, I am not a mind reader. That's irrelevant to the science, though. I do know that there are 'free market' think tanks out there using exactly the same tactics as the cigarette companies and creationists to sow doubt in science. And it shows. You can also read people denying AIDS is caused by HIV, crazy Galactic Plasma theories, the list is long. Anti-AGW is breeding contempt for science in general.

Quote:

Anti-AGW people argue some silly (and insanely stupid) things as well, don't get me wrong, but for the most part they don't tend to be as caustic about it (with a few obvious exceptions). To say that we do nothing to the planet is silly as well, as is it silly to say that everyone who believes in AGW must be an idiot and ideologue (unless their title says otherwise).
You don't get around enough. Go to a place where it's open slather, http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/ and they are far more abusive. Just look for Graeme Bird or Louis Hissink, for example. The lunatic theories they are ready to embrace at the drop of a hat, just because they are anti-AGW, are embarrassing as well. Deltoid Science blogs http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2008...ds_fail_me.php decided to call them on one of the more outrageous topics http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog...tml#trackbacks, and then Marohasy had the cheek to say all it was was Socratic Irony. http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog...tml#trackbacks Yeah, right.

Quote:
I think we should (and we are, obviously) move away from the current use of fossil fuel, but not out of some ideological distrust of corporations, nor because I think CO2 is destroying everything.

On another note, ground stations are messed up. Very much so. But obviously that doesn't invalidate all of AGW's arguments.
The mess is accounted for in the calculations.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 10:04 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by lomiller View Post
Have you consider the possibility that each piece of “evidence” was looked at and found to come from shills, or at the very least people not qualified in the subject?

<snip>

Anti-AGW papers published in real journals and received well enough to be followed up on are literally non-existent.

<snip>

There simply is no controversy in the scientific community, the only place any real debate over the basics exist is in the blogsphere.

<snip>

The warming effect CO2 on the atmosphere was first documented in a paper by Arrhenius 110 years ago, so it doesn’t go back quite as far as evolution, but it’s not that far off.

<snip>

It’s certainly true that science is always subject to change when new evidence comes along, that it not justification for presenting issues like evolution or AGW where there is little or no debate going on in the scientific literature.
Exactly.

That's why, if you're a fence-sitter, I urge you to seriously follow my link to the Science Daily climate page and start browsing.

Science Daily reports what's being published in the sciences.

They don't filter it.

If you look at those articles, you'll see what's actually going on.

Science is a ruthlessly competitive field. The fastest way to make a name for yourself is to overturn the consensus. Just look at what happened when the accelerating expansion of the universe was discovered.

And yet, every legitimate scientist in the field is on board with AGW. That should give you pause.

Also, scientists are constantly competing for a very limited pool of resources. For the most part, the theories and models that produce results continue to get funded (altho you do have the occasional think tank that pumps money into the system for political reasons).

As a rule, science is not like politics, where image and popular opinion can keep you afloat.

The bottom line is, people who make a living at science are not going to base their careers on theories, hypotheses, models, etc. that don't get results, that don't match reality.

There's a Darwinian effect going on here.

If you're a fence-sitter, please, browse that page, see what has worked, see what everyone is putting their money on, as well as their time, their energy, their reputation.

Look at their studies and their methods. Look at their results.

All this chatter on the blogosphere and talk radio and chain e-mails just doesn't match up with the facts.

Look at the facts. Look at the science.

Please.

Please, look at what's really going on.

When you do, you'll realize that it's real, and it's urgent.

I'm not asking you to believe my opinion. I'm not asking you to believe any pundit or any political theory or any talking head.

Just go look at the science. Look at what has passed muster, what has matched up with observation.

Then ask yourself if you can afford to sit on that fence much longer.
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Old 23rd August 2008, 11:10 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by tyr_13 View Post
That's funny, because every time I look at the science, the pro-AGW people say I should only look at their science because everyone else has in some way been funded by an oil company
I don't know how much science has been funded by oil companies. But make no mistake, lobbyists/propagandists have been.

Quote:
while their own science is funded by groups like the WWF and Greenpeace
If you can prove to me that even one published, peer-reviewed study was funded by WWF or Greenpeace, I'll buy you a jref membership.

Quote:
Just looking at the science got me to stop being a total supporter of the main AGW theory
For instance?

Quote:
I know how this conversation plays out now. One side links to a lot of papers, then the other side pokes holes in it, linking to their own papers
While I can see how people wind up with this perspective, (given the propaganda that is spread by vested interests, and the media's proclivity to give equal time to opposing opinions) this 'one side says this, the other side says that' business is a gross misrepresentation of the state of the science.
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Old 24th August 2008, 12:47 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by Aussie Thinker View Post
I know this is revisiting old territory but I vacillate on this issue so often it deserved another look.

I used to be a strong Anthopogenic (Man Caused) Global Warming (AGW) Skeptic

Sheer weight of numbers of reputable scientists who agreed that AGW was real convinced me there was something to it.

Now I’m not so sure …

Global temperatures have not increased in the past 8 years.. many people are starting to rethink wether AGW does exist.

Here is a good un-hysterical example.

http://xtronics.com/reference/globalwarming.htm

The simple thing is.. we constantly ask for evidence here.. the evidence for AGW is getting thinner and thinner.

Any one here who still believes in AGW ?
I think AGW is real in the sense that land-use change and increased CO2 can cause some warming. The myth part is the "repent NOW sinners, we are causing our DOOM" of hysterical alarmism.

My own take on it is that I would think manmade influence can be placed anywhere in the range of 0.05C to ~0.3C of the warming since 1900. Oviously I don't think that has been, or will be, a disaster. So like most informed skeptics I am in a certain technical sense a believer in AGW, though not in the alarmist variants.

The debate ranges from:
"Some fraction of warming since 1900 is manmade. Natural cycles and forcing are the rest." (AGW-skeptics). Anything from 10-60% is uttered depending on who you ask or what paper you read.
to:
"100% of warming since 1900 is manmade" (debatable, but still not catastrophic)
to:
"Manmade warming effect is much larger than observed warming, it is masked by temporary natural cooling/in the pipe/the underpants gnomes stole it but will return it soon. We will soon se 2/3/6/7 degrees warming in a few decades/one century. Our nonvalidated models prove it" (Alarmists)
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Old 24th August 2008, 02:26 AM   #34
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Well, if you mean that losing all coastal cities and 30+% of the earth's agricultural productivity in the next 100 years isn't doom, then you might have a point, Bluefire, otherwise, not so much.
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Old 24th August 2008, 03:03 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by BenBurch View Post
Well, if you mean that losing all coastal cities and 30+% of the earth's agricultural productivity in the next 100 years isn't doom, then you might have a point, Bluefire, otherwise, not so much.
Oh, my point stands. Such forecasts definitely goes in under the "REPENT NOW SINNERS" part of my post.
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Old 24th August 2008, 03:56 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Bluefire View Post
Oh, my point stands. Such forecasts definitely goes in under the "REPENT NOW SINNERS" part of my post.
You are the one coming up with that phrase. I don't see it anywhere in the IPCC reports.
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Old 24th August 2008, 07:04 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by a_unique_person View Post
You are the one coming up with that phrase. I don't see it anywhere in the IPCC reports.
The net you cast to invoke the level playing field of science falls short of Ben's bug eyed crab scurrying along the seventh floor of submerged skyscrapers:
Well, if you mean that losing all coastal cities and 30+% of the earth's agricultural productivity in the next 100 years isn't doom, then you might have a point, Bluefire, otherwise, not so much.
Either Ben's comment is valid by the IPCC literature review or you selectively criticize.

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Old 24th August 2008, 07:15 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
I don't know how much science has been funded by oil companies. But make no mistake, lobbyists/propagandists have been.

If you can prove to me that even one published, peer-reviewed study was funded by WWF or Greenpeace, I'll buy you a jref membership. .....
WWF and/or Greenpolice certainly do fund researchers who in turn publish. You might want to make a fast retraction of that comment or be prepared to deal with a thousand membership funding requests.

How much science has been funded by oil?

For starters the no strings attached $100M from Exxon to Stanford for climate research.

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Old 24th August 2008, 07:45 AM   #39
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I'll be the first to admit that the science behind AGW is over my head. Not because I'm stupid but because I don't have the time to read and digest both sides of this argument in order to come up with a serious argument either way.

As it stands I'd describe myself as a fence sitter too, but with tendencies to "believe" the scientists that AGW is a problem we need to address.

One thing I find interesting is that IRL, all it takes is one article, one TV show, one Internet thread, and an AGW denier is born. So far this year I've had anti Al Gore sentiment being used as a basis for AGW denying, some article written by some guy saying that the scientists are in it for the research grant money, and some article written about volcanoes and sea bed methane presented to me as a basis for AGW denial. Oh yea, The Great Global Warming Swindle keeps getting mention too.

I also get the "not my problem" excuse usually followed with "that's something our government needs to deal with" as long as it doesn't inconvenience me in any way or cost me any money.

I see it all as a way of avoiding any personal responsibility for something that looks like it won't have much of an effect on us "somewhat insulated" Westerners who make up the generation of humans walking the planet today. Bangladesh ? well, that's easy to ignore.

Then there's the outright hypocrites. The ones who point their fingers at SUV drivers as being the culprits, yet show no qualms about hopping on a plane and flying halfway across the world for a holiday. These guys usually spout some nonsense about their trip to Thailand promoting greater cultural understanding as an "excuse" to justify their direct contribution to AGW.

Any way you slice it, I'm seeing a real reluctance to address this issue in ways that are something more than superficial. like that guy i saw wearing a T-shirt yesterday with a picture of a Hummer on it and a caption reading "gashole" underneath the graphic. I know that guy went surfing in Peru last winter.

I have yet to meet a faith based AGW denier....but I read about them.
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Old 24th August 2008, 07:47 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by Bluefire View Post
Oh, my point stands. Such forecasts definitely goes in under the "REPENT NOW SINNERS" part of my post.
Never said that, did I?
Because I think its actually too late to repent.

Barring a major techo-fix for the problem, which is doable, but I don't see the political will to implement it, then we have an ice-free Greenland in about 150 years.

Maybe we could slow this down by reducing emissions, but its too late to stop it now. We would have had to begin serious reduction 8 or more years ago to stem this in time in my opinion.

So, what we need to do is plan for the inevitable now, and attempt to put some harder numbers on the rate at which we will have to evacuate cities and deal with the loss of agriculture. Its not going to be pretty.

Fortunately, I'll be feeding the worms by the time the worst of this hits, but you young folks had better expect to deal with it.

In other news, glacier melt rates worldwide are accelerating, the Northwest Passage is open for the second time in human history, and some rather alarming cracks have been observed in the glaciers in northern Greenland.
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