2011-09-18 10:51:14suggested answers to all Pielke Questions
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

I'm just going to throw out suggestions for all Pielke's questions - all are open for suggestion and revision:

1. Of the two hypotheses below, which one do you conclude is correct?

The two aren't mutually exclusive, and both are correct.  CO2 is the dominant radiative forcing causing the current global energy imbalance, however, there are other important factors as well.

2. Of the two perspectives below [from Mike Hulme], which one do you agree with?

Again, the two perspectives are not mutally exclusive, and both are correct.  As Hulme notes, they are simply two different framings.  In terms of climate policy, the second framing is probably more appropriate, as addressing climate change will involve more than just CO2 emissions reductions.

3. What is your preferred diagnostic to monitor global warming?

We don't have a preferred metric - we prefer to take all lines of evidence into account.  It's important to look at all the data in totality to monitor global warming (surface temperature, ocean heat content, atmospheric temperature, TOA energy imbalance, sea level rise, receding ice, etc.).

What is your best estimate of the observed trends in each of these metrics over the last 10 years and the last 20 years?

10-year trends are not statistically meaningful (see Santer et al. 2011, for example).  The approximate best estimate observed trends for some of these metrics over the last ~20 years are as follows.  TLT: 0.18°C per decade.  Surface temperature: 0.20°C per decade.  OHC upper 700 meters: 6.3 x 1022 J per decade.  Sea level rise: 32 mm per decade.  Arctic sea ice volume: -2900 km3 per decade.

4. What do the models’ predict should be the current value of these metrics.

The surface temperature change is consistent with model predictions.  The predicted TLT trend is approximately 0.26°C per decade, but the observations are within the 95% uncertainty rangeSea levels are rising faster and Arctic sea ice declining far faster than models predict.  [Need model OHC predictions]. 

[We are aware that OHC in the upper 700 meters has increased less than models project since 2003.  However, as noted above, this is too short of a timeframe for a valid statistical evaluation.  Further, models do not account for the increases in aerosol emissions over this period, and the data (from the ARGO network) is still relatively new.  Lymann et al. 2008 estimated the 95% uncertainty range at 0.4 W/m2.  And of course the oceans are much deeper than 700 meters.  We have discussed this subject previously (as has RealClimate), and we have no desire to repeat the same argument again.] - not sure if we need to include this section, but it heads off the argument we know he's going to make.  Probably worth including this.

5. What are your preferred diagnostics to monitor climate change?

That depends on how "climate change" is defined, but our preference is to look at all lines of evidence and data.

6. Is global warming (and cooling) a subset of climate change or does it dominate climate change?

Again, that depends on how "climate change" is defined.  Long-term global temperature and climate changes are both ultimately caused by global energy imbalances, while short-term changes can also be caused by internal variability.

2011-09-18 10:54:40
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

I think this is looking good.  Short, to the point answers.  I would expect him to come back with a long explanation on OHC. 

2011-09-18 12:10:38
grypo

gryposaurus@gmail...
173.69.6.13

Before posting this, think about mentioning that Pielke has written another post that attempts to undermine SkS.  Let everyone know that he was told to wait and that answers to his questions may come shortly. People also need to realize that he's been impatient, difficult to deal with, and has shifted his criticisms and debate tactics several times.  We've gone out of our to accomodate him without much in return.  IOW, tell the whole truth.  I'm not sure how to word this but it should be done as profesional as possible.

2011-09-18 12:11:26
Alex C

coultera@umich...
67.194.30.40

>>>there are other important factors as well.

Why don't you leave a sign on that wide open door asking him to come on in, hm?

>>>[Need model OHC predictions].

It would be a very risky move that would have to be handled carefully, but as is being discussed in the thread in General Chat, Hansen apparently had a model for this.  I say risky because of the past complaints Pielke has had against that model - the points about long term trends though and short term variability (and data quality) should stand.

>>>while short-term changes can also be caused by internal variability.

Mmm, short term variability is simply a moving of heat.  As he himself seems to be a fan of energy measurements, there should not be a need for metioning this.  Or, if you are going to include this, make sure you clarify what happens: short term variability is the result of heat transport from one region to another (e.g. deep ocean to surface).

2011-09-18 13:08:06
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

grypo - John is working on a post that will address the fact that Pielke has moved the goalposts and such.  These responses will be a follow-up to that post.  We'll make sure John's post is clear in holding Pielke accountable for his behavior.

Alex - fair points.  The model OHC projections are the trickiest part, which is why Pielke asked the question.

2011-09-18 14:57:10
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Empty post.

2011-09-18 15:01:13
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Don't forget glacier loss in fact one could inlcude the 'Indicators of a warming world", and turn this into a teaching moment, and not how some whish to deceive by focussing only ONE metric.  Nudge, nudge.

USE Graphics, a picture is worth a thousand words!

I would emphasis that what 'we' (i.e., SkS) thinks is not at all relevant, so do not say "we" this is about what the body of SCIENCE says and what statistics say is required to extract stat sig signals.  What Pielke thinks is not necessarily what the body of science is saying, and it is easy deceive people by using statistically insignificant short-tyerm trend instead of stat. sig. long term trends.  

Tamino's 5-years post also comes to mind.

 

2011-09-18 15:16:20nice
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Very good ideas, Alby.  Always good to include some nice graphics.  Reponse updated:

===============================================================================

1. Of the two hypotheses below, which one do you conclude is correct?

The two aren't mutually exclusive, and both are correct.  CO2 is the dominant radiative forcing causing the current global energy imbalance.

2. Of the two perspectives below [from Mike Hulme], which one do you agree with?

Again, the two perspectives are not mutally exclusive, and both are correct.  As Hulme notes, they are simply two different framings.  In terms of climate policy, the second framing is probably more appropriate, as addressing climate change will involve more than just CO2 emissions reductions.

3. What is your preferred diagnostic to monitor global warming?

All lines of evidence must be taken into account.  It's important to look at all the data in totality to monitor global warming (surface temperature, ocean heat content, atmospheric temperature, TOA energy imbalance, sea level rise, receding ice, etc.).

What is your best estimate of the observed trends in each of these metrics over the last 10 years and the last 20 years?

10-year trends are not statistically meaningful (see Santer et al. 2011, for example).  The approximate best estimate observed trends for some of these metrics over the last ~20 years are as follows.  TLT: 0.18°C per decade.  Surface temperature: 0.20°C per decade.  OHC upper 700 meters: 6.3 x 1022 J per decade.  Sea level rise: 32 mm per decade.  Arctic sea ice volume: -2900 km3 per decade.  Glacier mass balance: -180 mm w.e. per decade.

4. What do the models’ predict should be the current value of these metrics.

The surface temperature change is consistent with model predictions.  The predicted TLT trend is approximately 0.26°C per decade, but the observations are within the 95% uncertainty rangeSea levels are rising faster and Arctic sea ice declining far faster than models predict.

We are aware that OHC in the upper 700 meters appears to have increased less than models project since 2003.  However, there are a number of reasons for this apparent discrepancy.

  • as noted above, this is too short of a timeframe for a valid statistical evaluation. 
  • models generally do not account for the increases in aerosol emissions over this period
  • the ARGO network is still relatively new with large uncertainties.  Lymann et al. 2008 estimated the 95% uncertainty range at 0.4 W/m2
  • the oceans are much deeper than 700 meters. 

We have discussed this subject previously here and more recently here , taking the deep ocean into account (RealClimate has also argued this issue), and we have no desire to repeat the same argument again.

5. What are your preferred diagnostics to monitor climate change?

That depends on how "climate change" is defined, but it is necessary to look at all lines of evidence and data.

6. Is global warming (and cooling) a subset of climate change or does it dominate climate change?

Again, that depends on how "climate change" is defined.  Long-term global temperature and climate changes are both ultimately caused by global energy imbalances.

2011-09-18 15:20:29
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Hi Dana,

1) This post could be helpful-- maybe equate what Pielke is doing with what Monckton tried to do.

 

2) Note that models models are too conservbative for GSL, arctic sea ice.

 

3) Here is Domingues et al. (2008).

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v453/n7198/abs/nature07080.html

Abtract:

Changes in the climate system's energy budget are predominantly revealed in ocean temperatures1, 2 and the associated thermal expansion contribution to sea-level rise2. Climate models, however, do not reproduce the large decadal variability in globally averaged ocean heat content inferred from the sparse observational database3, 4, even when volcanic and other variable climate forcings are included. The sum of the observed contributions has also not adequately explained the overall multi-decadal rise2. Here we report improved estimates of near-global ocean heat content and thermal expansion for the upper 300 m and 700 m of the ocean for 1950–2003, using statistical techniques that allow for sparse data coverage5, 6, 7 and applying recent corrections8 to reduce systematic biases in the most common ocean temperature observations9. Our ocean warming and thermal expansion trends for 1961–2003 are about 50 per cent larger than earlier estimates but about 40 per cent smaller for 1993–2003, which is consistent with the recognition that previously estimated rates for the 1990s had a positive bias as a result of instrumental errors8, 9, 10. On average, the decadal variability of the climate models with volcanic forcing now agrees approximately with the observations, but the modelled multi-decadal trends are smaller than observed. We add our observational estimate of upper-ocean thermal expansion to other contributions to sea-level rise and find that the sum of contributions from 1961 to 2003 is about 1.5 plusminus 0.4 mm yr-1, in good agreement with our updated estimate of near-global mean sea-level rise (using techniques established in earlier studies6, 7) of 1.6 plusminus 0.2 mm yr-1.

 

4) OTHER METRICS:

i) One could also throw in ERA-interim surface tempertaure data 1989-present.  Robert Way has done work with this.  

ii) Trenberth has hsown that the precipitable water vapour content (PWV) over oceans is going up consistent with Clausius-claperyon. The graphic shows atmos. humidity going up but that is not right, it should be specific humidity and/or PWV.

2011-09-18 15:25:20
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana,

Sorry to harp on about this, but what 'we' (i.e., SkS) thinks is not at all relevant, so please DO NOT say "this is we think"or 'we do not have a preferred metric" "or our preference is to", this is about what the body of SCIENCE says and what statistics say is required to extract stat sig signals.   We not not get to choose the metric or time frames, and neither does Pielke.

2011-09-18 15:28:44we we we all the way home
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Okey dokey Alby.  Revised accordingly.

2011-09-18 15:38:09
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Thanks Dana,

The reason this is important is b/c or self-proclaimed school teacher (Pielke-- god these guys are arrogant) is going to try and pin any errors, misunderstandings, failing etc, (anything really) on SkS.  But what people need to know is that he is in fact railing aginst the body of science, physics and rules of statistics.  So that way he can't pin them on us to try and make us look bad-- which is his goal.

And I have been thinking, maybe you could contact JohnC about this.  I have a title of John's post to pielke.  

"An open letter of enouragement to Dr. Pielke"

The letter is to encourage him to be more skeptical of his peers, and be critical of them when they misinform congress, distort, mislead and confuse people, and belittle the problem of AGW, make ad hiom attacks on climate scientists and perpetuate myths (as Spencer was doing with his humans exhaling CO2 BS).

It is cheeky as it plays on Spencer's recent open letter to Dessler.  Yes, I said before that him doing so was juvenile and provocative, and it was, but I think John doing so is a very subtle dig at Pielke given that that Spencer is apparantly is BFF ;)

2011-09-18 15:41:52John's post
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

John is drafting up a response to Pielke somewhere along those lines, so we'll all have the opportunity to comment on it and make those suggestions when he posts it for review, Alby.  He's busy with family today, but I'm guessing it will be up sometime tomorrow.

2011-09-18 15:42:33
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

"and we have no desire to repeat the same argument again."

Maybe:

"and we have no desire to repeat the same argument again for the sake of allowing 'skeptics' to fabricate debate and sow confusion"

Not sure the uncertainties in ARGO are large-- Palmer et al. (2011) and von Shuckmann and le Traon (especially) discuss and quantify this.  Over longer periods, there are issues splicing the XBT and ARGO data.

 

Re John's reply,

No worries Dana, I understand, family is important! Now sleep I must!

2011-09-18 15:50:25
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Yeah I had sort of a note to self to check on ARGO uncertainty, since Lymann is a bit out of date.  I had read somewhere that ARGO uncertainties are supposedly smaller now.  I'm a bit skeptical, but will need to do some research.  Or if somebody else could check on that (i.e. Alby's references), it would be much appreciated :-)

I'd prefer not to add that bolded text - it basically infers that Pielke is trying to sow confusion, which is certainly true, but not something we should come out and say.  It's against site policy anyway because it speculates about his motives.  I think it's sufficient to say "we've been down this road before".

2011-09-18 18:50:18Various comments, getting caught up:
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.56.122

Dana & Albatross:

I don't think I've seen the current draft fully spelled out, but I have a concern about your desire to expunge the word "we" and replace it by "the body of science" (or equivalent phrasing). When WE write something, it can only be OUR understanding, as WE are not empowered to speak for SCIENCE. If we say that properly, that is not triumphant boosting of our own position; but rather appropriate acknowledgement that science is a collective project, and so this is OUR understanding based on the available evidence.

This is a subtle point of tone.

 

Dana:

"We have discussed this subject previously here and more recently here , taking the deep ocean into account (RealClimate has also argued this issue), and we have no desire to repeat the same argument again."

I would suggest the insertion in the discussion on OHC somewhere: "One reason that we like to rely on multiple lines of evidence, rather than depend on only one indicator, is that any one can be wrong. The history of the UAH measurements comes to mind: The measurements were in conflict with other methods for tracking temperature change for over a decade, and clarified only after very subtle analysis of the physical behavior of the instruments."

Don't mention Christy, and don't crack a smile.

 

grypo:

"Before posting this, think about mentioning that Pielke has written another post that attempts to undermine SkS.  Let everyone know that he was told to wait and that answers to his questions may come shortly. People also need to realize that he's been impatient, difficult to deal with, and has shifted his criticisms and debate tactics several times.  We've gone out of our to accomodate him without much in return.  IOW, tell the whole truth.  I'm not sure how to word this but it should be done as profesional as possible."

Thanks for noticing my comment in the blog ("Roger, It is quite possible that there will be a follow-up post regarding the specific issues you raised."). However, there is no reason to believe that Pielke would have noticed this, or that he would take it as an authoritative indication of what SkS would do. I did not have a clear indication at the time that we were, in fact, going to issue a reply to him, so I couldn't say anything stronger; and in any event, Pielke doesn't know me from Adam. It was more of a "CYA" on behalf of SkS.

More to the point: We need to be calm and professional. I think the tone of the current draft is good. I will wait to see JC's draft letter, but I think we need to make sure that it takes the discussion in the direction we want, and is not wasted as just one more chance to "get our licks in."

2011-09-18 19:01:54
MarkR
Mark Richardson
m.t.richardson2@gmail...
134.225.187.197

Can someone check the statistics of the claims for time periods required? Tamino probably knows.

 

The required time period for 'significance' is different for different things iirc. I think atmospheric temperatures are noisier, so you generally need a longer time period?

2011-09-18 21:32:01Review?
BaerbelW

baerbel-for-350@email...
93.231.165.236

How about asking somebody like Barry Bickmore and/or Scott Mandia to read through SkS's reply to Dr. Pielke's questions to ensure that all "t's are crossed and i's dotted"? I'm sure that both have been following the visible part of this back-and-forth but it might be helpful to get their (or others') perspective before this gets published.

2011-09-18 21:38:24
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.56.122

Baerbel,

Not a bad idea, but I would wait until we have the complete package (including our restatement of our original questions, that he somewhat evaded) before sending it out for review.

We have material for A2, I think JC is essentially doing A1; I was hoping Robert Way was going to lead on A3.

2011-09-18 21:57:58
grypo

gryposaurus@gmail...
173.69.6.13

Just a note to keep in mind:  Pielke designed these questions specifically to his needs so I think we are on the right track in answering them in short format.  His rebuttal will be half technical but logically incorrect.  IE, he will say 'scientist X likes OHC as a measurement for warming so therefore OHC should replace all other metrics'.  His tendency to form conclusions based on specious logic is pretty noticable.  If we keep an eye on his jumps in logic our cherry pielking series will be much better.  Another example:  'There is no delayed warming because we cannot measure it Joules in OHC.'  This is based on a misdefinition of delayed warming AND follows his logically wrong conclusions about OHC being a sole definitive metric.  Another example is his confidence in observations v models which is more technical but suffers from logical inconsistencies where is premises about model behavior are faulty.

 

I actually like the direction this is moving ie toward his pet theories because when spelled out in sequence, they are very far from mainstream thought due to logical inconsistancy.  I think once John spells out his thoughts on Pielke's one sided skepticism, we can just drop it and move on to his ideas.

2011-09-18 22:10:15
BaerbelW

baerbel-for-350@email...
93.231.165.236

Neal,

sure, waiting until we are out of draft-status is what I had in mind - I just didn't spell this out explicitely.

2011-09-19 00:43:11
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125
grypo - yes ultimately my personal plan is to essentially "trap" Pielke into stating is faulty arguments to give us material for Cherry Pielking, unless we can refute it in the back-and-forth itself. Neal - agreed on inserting the UAH history in there. I was thinking of something similar. As for trends, I know TLT and surface temp aren't statistically significant for 15-plus years. There are so many different suggestions of how to analyze OHC data that I can't imaging any confidence can be placed on 10 years of data. But I agree on getting outside review. Bickmore would be good, and maybe tamino at least for the statistics. Dikran could probably check the statistics for us too.
2011-09-19 02:18:43
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Small thing...  You need to underline the second question.

2011-09-19 05:57:44link
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Okay, made a few updates and put the responses into a blog post.

SkS Responses to Pielke Sr. Questions

2011-09-19 08:32:53Some proposed changes
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.56.122

///////////////////////

The first paragraph seems unnecessarily combative: It seems to me that should be left to the paper that presents our incompletely answered questions.

"On his blog in response to our post One-Sided 'Skepticism' (which was in response to another post on Pielke's blog which wrongly accused SkS of "ad hominem presentations," and which noted Dr. Pielke's unwillingness to aim his critical eye at his "skeptic" colleagues), Roger Pielke Sr. asked SkS to respond to some questionsWe would like to note that these questions have nothing whatsoever to do with the initial discussion initiated by Dr. Pielke's unsubstantiated criticism of SkS.  However, in the interest of establishing what we hope will be a productive discourse, we have agreed to answer Dr. Pielke's questions in the hopes that he will answer some of ours.  To this point he has not yet provided satistfactory answers to the questions we have posed him.

Dr. Pielke's questions are underlined in the text below, and SkS' answers follow."

=>

"On his blog in response to our post One-Sided 'Skepticism', Pf. Roger Pielke Sr. asked SkS to respond to some questions [THIS IS THE WRONG URL].  These questions were unrelated to the initial discussion; however, in the interest of establishing what we hope will be a productive discourse, we have agreed to answer Dr. Pielke's questions, and hope that he will answer    our previously posed questions. Dr. Pielke did respond to these questions - but not in a way that we felt got to the point. We are [will be] restating them so as to clarify the concerns intended.

Dr. Pielke's questions are underlined in the text below, and SkS's answers follow."

\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\

The URLs in 1) and 2) link to the wrong page: Pielke's questions aren't on that page.

/////////////////////

 

3) "10-year trends are generally not statistically meaningful"

=> "We don't consider climate-related trends defined for periods as short as 10 years to be statistically meaningful"

/////////////////////

 

4)

- Shouldn't the question end with a "?" ?

 

- "Sea levels are rising faster and Arctic sea ice declining far faster"

=> "Sea levels are rising faster and Arctic sea ice is declining far faster"

(in the interest of parallel construction)

 

"However, there are a number of reasons for this apparent discrepancy."

=> "However, there are a number of factors that may explain this discrepancy:"

 

Ideally, the bullet items would be ended by ";", except the last one by "." .

 

"We have discussed this subject previously here and more recently here , taking the deep ocean into account (RealClimate has also argued this issue), and we have no desire to repeat the same argument again."

=> "We have discussed this subject previously here and more recently here , taking the deep ocean into account; and also RealClimate has examinied this issue."

 

"One reason that we like to rely on multiple lines of evidence, rather than depend on only one indicator, is that any one can be wrong. The history of the UAH measurements comes to mind: the measurements were in conflict with other methods for tracking temperature change (and with climate model projections) for over a decade, and most of the discrepancy was resolved (in favor of the models) only after very subtle analysis of the physical behavior of the instruments."

=> "One reason that we like to rely on multiple lines of evidence, rather than depend on one single indicator, is that any one can be wrong. The history of the UAH measurements comes to mind: the measurements were in conflict with other methods for tracking temperature change (and with climate model projections) for over a decade; eventually, most of the discrepancy was resolved (in favor of the models) only after very subtle analysis of the physical behavior of the instruments."

2011-09-19 09:05:23comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.207.122

Figured i'd put this here too:

Regarding his A3, i'm not sure that's quite as easy to tackle as I once thought. To be honest what he is saying isn't necessarily debunkable. It is true that many things are important to be considered. I'm not sure I want to answer that one or can at this time given that I just lost my computer with all my software, data and etc... on it. At this point I just have some other things I have to do to get back on track unfortunately.


Regarding the observations being consistent (temperature wise). I don't think that they are to be honest, Santer et al should have plotted the 95% uncertainty range on the observations too, not just the models. Eventhough others (James Annan and others) have argued against using multi-model mean comparisons with observations and have advocated for the singular runs being the most important, it is an important characteristic that they're matched. If you consider it this way, there's a greater than 50% chance that the models do not match the observations, then you realize that by protecting ourselves with the 95% error bars we are still opening ourselves up for criticism.

For me, and this is purely personal, I think that the fact that the multi-model mean is too hot is proof that we know a lot about the climate because it would be expected considering they don't include the newly discovered negative forcing from aerosols over the last decade. If we get it this close without those aerosols then we're doing pretty good. If they matched perfectly then it would show that our understanding of radiative physics would be off.

2011-09-19 09:25:08Draft response to #2 gives me heart-burn
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.98.161

Current draft:

"Again, the two perspectives are not mutally exclusive, and both are correct.  As Hulme notes, they are simply two different framings.  In terms of climate policy, the second framing is probably more appropriate, as addressing climate change will involve more than just CO2 emissions reductions."

I believe that Pielke is trying to trap SkS into admiting that it engages in "framing climate science". As you know, he and his son adamantly oppose scientists becoming advocates for remedial actions. That is their primary beef with James Hansen and others.

My suggested response.

Because SkS is not about "framing climate science for policy makers", neither option is preferred, [Note: the options presented are just two of the six constructs developed by Hulme in his paper, "You’ve been framed: six new ways to understand climate change."] 

2011-09-19 09:27:49
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Pielke has said on his blog that policymakers need to be informed about all climate-related issues, not just CO2.  I think he would agree with our answer.  If he doesn't, I can point to a post on his blog that says something very similar.

2011-09-19 09:36:07Work on A3 needed
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.56.122

Please see:

http://www.skepticalscience.com/thread.php?t=2805

2011-09-19 10:55:11
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Hey Dana...  I know that you usually like to bump up the point size of the headings but in this case I think it gives too much emphasis to the questions.  I'd pull the font back down to match the rest of the text.  Maybe keep the dark blue font color and the underline.  (All IMHO.)

2011-09-19 12:01:34Question format
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.98.161

Why not do the questions in bold italic and drop the underline? Reduce font size.

2011-09-19 13:24:44Qs
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

No prob, will modify the questions as suggested.  Here's Pielke's quote pertaining to Q2 by the way:

"The reduction of risks using the bottom-up, resource-based framework, in contrast, is a much more valuable and inclusive approach. With this perspective  policymakers can adopt effective mitigation and adaptation methodologies to deal with the diversity of complex threats to society and the environment that will occur in the coming decades, regardless of the extent that humans are altering the global average surface temperature."

2011-09-19 13:41:32update
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Post updated to change the question format and include most of neal's suggested language changes.

SkS Responses to Pielke Sr. Questions

2011-09-19 13:57:22
Rob Painting
Rob
paintingskeri@vodafone.co...
118.93.245.243

"We are aware that OHC in the upper 700 meters appears to have increased less than models project since 2003. However, there are a number of factors that may explain this discrepancy"

Yeah, he conveniently forgets that the models were underestimating OHC from 1961-1999. What about?:

"We are aware that OHC in the upper ocean increased more than the models expected from 1961-1999 and have increased less than models project since 2003. However, there are a number of factors that may explain this discrepancy"

2011-09-19 14:35:43good point
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Thanks Rob, I wasn't sure about pre-2003 model OHC projections.  Change made.

2011-09-19 16:08:48
Rob Painting
Rob
paintingskeri@vodafone.co...
118.92.49.149

Dana, there are a few papers that discuss it, but it's obvious there's a big change in the rate of OHC increase from the nineties to the noughties, when you look at the NOAA graphs you linked to. Trouble is they tend to refer to different depths over time.

2011-09-19 17:09:35
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

"10-year trends are generally not statistically meaningful"

=> "10-year trends are generally not considered statistically meaningful"

 

 

 

Also, I would standardize the punctuation on the bullet items, so:

  • as noted above, this is too short of a timeframe for a valid statistical evaluation; 
  • models generally do not account for the increases in aerosol emissions over this period;
  • the oceans are much deeper than 700 meters, and the so-called "missing heat" may very well reside in the deeper oceans (i.e. see Meehl et al. 2011).
2011-09-19 19:22:20Release schedule?
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

Dana, have you worked out a release date with JC? I guess the stage-1 response is out already.

2011-09-20 02:39:49
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

neal - it's not a consideration.  The 10-year trends aren't statistically significant.  I could change from "meaningful" to "significant" if you prefer.

Not sure about the scheduling - it depends on when we feel comfortable with our answers.  I sent them to Barry Bickmore who made a few minor suggestions, but didn't have any major issues.  There's also the question about whether we're going to ask Pielke any questions of our own, because if so, they should probably go in this post too.

2011-09-20 02:42:41
Riccardo

riccardoreitano@tiscali...
192.84.150.209

General comment: don't take his questions too seriously, they don't deserve it. In the preamble I'd just say "hey, let's play this game!" (not litterally :)).

Preamble: maybe here we need to say why we're responding (we are so proud of his consideration:)) and (IMHO) that we're not going to continue, it's outside the goals of this site. We also need  a general comment on his questions: they are generic or somewhat un/ill-defined and apparently they have in mind policymakers more than science.

Q3, second part: start by saying that we do not have our own best estimate, we just look at what is published. Report a range of values to underlines that it is not necessary to go into such level of details as far as the big picture is concerned. Given that we say that we don't have any preferred metric, when giving the trends (or ranges) you may say "for example".

Q4: don't go into the details of the uncertainty range. Just say if it is higher or lower and if it is or not within the uncertainty. Drop the OHC discussion, it's there only because we know it's Pileke preferred metric and you're just highlighting a weakness in understanding.

2011-09-20 03:00:13
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

- On OHC: It's a question as to whether we'll be in a better position by bringing it up first; or by waiting until Pielke does.

- I don't see why discussing things with Pielke is inherently out of SkS's scope. It depends how it goes. We can always cut it off.

- The wording I suggested about "generally considered" is to send the message that this judgment of insignificance is not our arbitrary decision, but is in alignment with the way generations of scientists have thought about experimental statistics.

- I saw your note on Bickmore's suggestion on another thread. I think it's OK as long as it's to the point and not too complicated. I don't like the idea of his version of the exchange standing unchallenged too long; and I am slightly concerned that these exchanges could start growing exponentially instead of remaining bounded. In that sense I (slightly) agree with Riccardo.

2011-09-20 03:02:37
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

I think that Riccardo is right.  In fact it had crossed my mind that we should say somehting like "We are flattered that Pielke has elected to be our teacher"....yes too snarky probably, but we have to have some sort of caveat in there and at the same time do a serious job of addressing his nonsensical and cherry-picked questions.  I would even suggest saying right up fron that we have a good supsicion that where he may be heading with this...no increase in OHC in X years, while the mdels suggested that it would increase by Y.  Steal his thunder!

I think his sequenc eof zeroes for accumulated OHC in the top 700 m are wrong by the way. Surely someone can download and have a look at the NODC data (I am too busy I'm afraid and spent to much time at SkS today already).

2011-09-20 03:06:41
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

I definitely object to: "We are flattered that Pielke has elected to be our teacher".

This looks terrible: sarcastic and out-of-one's-depth at the same time.

Please, give a thought as to how other people will see it!

2011-09-20 03:10:16
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Alby - I did look at the OHC data and Pielke is wrong.  I posted some numbers in one of the Gen Chat threads where it first came up.  There's even a nearly two order of magnitude difference in various trend estimates since 2003, which I made a note of in your response.  I think it's worth keeping the OHC uncertainty discussion in there.  Basically let him know that we know where he's going, but if he wants to hang himself with his own rope, we should let him.

I agree on shortening Barry's question.  Will have a look at that in a bit.

2011-09-20 03:12:40
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Hi Dana,

"CO2 is the dominant radiative forcing causing the current global energy imbalance."

True, but on what time scales??  Certainly not annually.  I would be careful here.  But you may be just using his framing as posited in the hypotheses.

 

"TLT: 0.18°C per decade"

The RSS data that you link to says: #Least squares trend line; slope = 0.0192762 per year.  Maybe also inlcude UAH in brackets?


"We have discussed this subject previously here and more recently here , taking"

Extra space after "here".


"most of the discrepancy was resolved (in favor of the models) only after very subtle analysis of the physical behavior of the instruments."

"In favour of" seems a little too confident. Closer to the models AND surface temperature record?


"Long-term global temperature and climate changes are both ultimately caused by global energy imbalances."

Good!
2011-09-20 03:19:29
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Hi Dana@  3:10 AM,

OK, I was not aware of that.  Thanks for letting me know.  Its looking good IMHO, but one can never tell a priori how a serial disinformer is going to spin it.

IMHO, the answers are honest, direct and scientifcially motivated.  I'm not sure what else one can do.

2011-09-20 03:32:14
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

The link has both RSS and UAH Alby:

#----------------------------------------------------
#Data from Remote Sensing Systems
#http://www.ssmi.com/msu/msu_data_description.html
#----------------------------------------------------
#Least squares trend line; slope = 0.0159492 per year

#----------------------------------------------------
#Data from UAH National Space Science and Technology Center
#http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/public/msu/t2lt/
#----------------------------------------------------
#
#Least squares trend line; slope = 0.0192762 per year

The 0.18°C is the average of the two.

2011-09-20 03:35:49
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Hi Dana,

OFFs! You are right of course.  OK, clearly a sign to drink my coffee!  Sorry about that Dana.

2011-09-20 03:43:47
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

No prob Alby.  I added a couple hopefully straightforward Qs to Pielke at the end.  Basically trying to pin him down to either accept or deny AGW and its implications.  Thoughts?

1. How much of the global warming (increase in surface, atmosphere, ocean temperatures, etc.) over the past 50 years would you estimate is due to human greenhouse gas emissions and other anthropogenic effects?

2. Do you agree that continuing on our current business-as-usual emissions path presents an unacceptable (in your opinion) risk to humans?

2011-09-20 03:50:08
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Hi Dana,

"risk to humans?"

Economic and physical?  The biosphere that supports us?  You might need to be more excplicit.  I'd add a third question "Do you think that we should move towards a low carbon econmomy thereby reducing our GHG emissions?"..  That ultimately is what this "debate" boils down to-- yes, I know that I have asked this question (or derivitives thereof) several times now ;)

2011-09-20 03:54:09
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

On Q4:

"models generally do not account for the increases in aerosol emissions over this period;"

=> "models generally do not take into account the increases in aerosol emissions over this period;"

 

The first phrasing makes it seem like a failure of the models; the second phrasing means that the models don't include the increase in aerosol emissions within the scope of factors.

 

On our questions: This may be over-kill, but maybe it would be useful to indicate a few specific diagnostics, so that he is sure to know that you will not be satisfied with reliance solely on OHC.

2011-09-20 03:57:49
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

1. Approximately what percentage of the global warming (increase in surface, atmosphere, ocean temperatures, etc.) over the past 50 years would you estimate is due to human greenhouse gas emissions and other anthropogenic effects?

2. Do you agree that continuing on our current business-as-usual emissions path presents an unacceptable (in your opinion) risk to the biosphere and human society in general?

3. Do you think that we should move towards a low carbon econmomy thereby reducing our GHG emissions?

neal - good point on Q4.  I would suggest we hold off on OHC questions until we see his next response.  He'll probably respond to our answers saying "OHC data is awesome!", at which point we'll get further into the details.

2011-09-20 04:06:15
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana, do you have a relaible scinetific reference lined up for his answer to Q1?  I hope so.

Thanks for incorporating my suggestions, but only do so if you think they are of value-- I am not making much sense this morning, very tired.

But a good strategy to add questions-- it avoids him waffling ad infinitum and places some pressure on him to do some work.  Good to inlude "other anthro effects" as that inluded his much touted land-surface impacts.

Good catch Neal re aerosols.

Re OHC, I think that we are in a similar point with OHC as they were with the satelite data in the late nineties-- some issues resolved, but many more still  to be resolved.  Actuallyu I see a parallels with Pielke's defense and excitement with the OHC and was demonstrated by Chrsity and Spencer with the UAH satellite data.  Interesting....

2011-09-20 04:26:42
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana,

Just occurred to me-- please sonsider adding a question about OA in there.  Even if one dismisses the amount of wamring or how much is from what, that does not deal with the potentially huge issue of OA.

Other ideas:

Does he think that the cons of doubling or even quadrupling CO2 outweigh any pros?

What about the possibility of climate disruption from AGW resulting in areas like the Amazon changing into net sources of carbon rather than sinks?

Does he recognize that by exclusing ice dynamic, the IPCC have very likley underestimated the expected increase in sea levels.

I'm trying to think about asking him about issue sthat SPencer and Watts and Chrsity have glibly dismissed.  B/c it owould be nice if we could show him contradicting them, or squriming like hell to avoid doing so.  And that would also be consistent with the observation that arguments made by "skeptics" are oftentimes internally inconsistent and self contradictory.

If you inlcude the OA then we will have two.  Spencer thinks that most of the wamring is natural.  He has also dismissed OA.  Spencer also does not seem to be in favour iof reducing GHGs--he often makes jokes about SUVs not being around dueing the Medieval warm anomaly, for example.

Maybe a question about anthro aersols is in order, b/c Watts and Spencer recently dismissed Kaufmann.  Spencer,

"2) Blaming Chinese coal-fired power plants for a lack of warming is just taking the modelers anthropocentrism to an even higher plane. There seems to be no good evidence to support such a claim anyway."  Source

 

Maybe ask him what he thnik s of the paper by Thorne et al. (2010) and Johnson and Xie (2010).  Why?  Here is why.

"Sks discusses the papers here. Both those papers' findings refute the claim made in Christy et al. (2010) that:
"This result indicates the majority of AR4 simulations tend to portray significantly greater warming in the troposphere relative to the surface than is found in observations."

Specifically, Thorne et al. (2010) find:
"It is concluded that there is no reasonable evidence of a fundamental disagreement between tropospheric temperature trends from models and observations when uncertainties in both are treated comprehensively."

Johnson and Xie (2010) find:
"We conclude that, in contrast with some observational indications, the tropical troposphere has warmed in a way that is consistent with moist-adiabatic adjustment, in agreement with global climate model simulations."

Can I find a discussion of Thorne et al. (2010) or Johnson and Xie et al. (2010) on Pielke's site? No. I did find this though :)"

2011-09-20 04:38:38
grypo

gryposaurus@gmail...
173.69.6.13

For our q's to him:  I'd recognize his interest in short term, local climate change due to land use changes, but in the same line ask what he plans on doing about long term CO2 problem that SkS focuses on.  This 1) shows him we "get" his thing and 2) tests whether he really gets ours.  This is where you will see him retreat to his usual talking points about OHC and no delayed warming.  Or he will say it is too uncertain to develope policy.  Always get them talking about policy because that is where the divide is.  Science is used as a proxy.

2011-09-20 05:06:22
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Grypo, I see your point, but the problem with that question is that he thinks that regional land-use change has significant consequences over many decades.  From his paper just published:

"Remaining research issues are presented including whether these landscape changes alter large-scale atmospheric circulation patterns far from where the land use and land cover changes occur"

"For those regions that have undergone intensive LULCC, or will undergo intensive change in the future, failure to factor in this forcing has profound consequences"

He has been doing this for years now-- he seems to think of land use change is largely a separate issue from GHGs, in some instances it is, but in many others it is not.  He also seems to think that the radiative forcing from land-use changes is similar to that from GHGs.

I'm not saying that his land use work is not interesting or important or relevant to the AGW problem (the loss of forests certainly is, I also happened to do my PhD on land-atmosphere interactions, so I too value the importance of land-atmsphere interaction and feedbacks), but it is not on par with the radiative forcing associated with doubling or quadrupling CO2 in a very short time.

And I see I contradiction by him on this front, the oceancs cover ~70% of the planet-- no land-use change there.  And if land-use change is so important as he repeatedly claims, then why focus soly on OHC as a metric?

2011-09-20 05:06:58
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

What aspect of Q1 do you mean Alby?  The fact that CO2 is the dominant forcing?

I like the idea of an OA question - I weaved it into question #2.  I don't want to the number of questions to be come unwieldy though - we can keep Throne and Johnson and Xie in our pockets for the next round of questions, if there is one.

grypo - I think maybe we should see what his response is to our current Q1, then maybe phrase a later question like you suggest. 

2011-09-20 05:14:45
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

Alby, that's a good one: If he's insisting on the primacy of OHC as THE diagnostic for GW, then hit him with, "I guess that means that land-use issues can't be very important, since they don't contribute at all to OHC."

Is there an answer for that one? If not, keep it in the back pocket!

2011-09-20 05:26:27
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Good point.  Our Q1 is formulated in a way that he might answer about the importance of land use changes.  If he also harps on OHC as being the only diagnostic of AGW and showing no warming, we can nail him with this contradiction.

2011-09-20 05:32:18
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

I don't know what the numbers are, but I guess that the LU issues ARE quantitatively less important than OHC (if I remember properly the readings above); so when he defends the importance of LU even if it's, say, 10% of the OHC figures, you can say, "That's an excellent example of the need to keep an eye on ALL the relevant parameters of climate change, and not get fixated on just one."

Check & mate.

2011-09-20 05:35:29
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana,

He asked six questions, if we ask 5 or six then that is perfectly reasonable.

"What aspect of Q1 do you mean Alby?  The fact that CO2 is the dominant forcing?"

Are you perhaps referring to me saying this?

"Dana, do you have a relaible scientific reference lined up for his answer to Q1?  I hope so."

IMHO, Q1 is fine...I just want us to be sure that we have something concrete to refute the expected drivel and hand-waving that we'll probably get back.  that is a paper which quantifies ~ how much of the warming in the past 50 years is likely attributable to GHGs.

2011-09-20 05:36:51
grypo

gryposaurus@gmail...
173.69.6.13

Good points Alby.  I had thought he had given in to the massive uncertainty in his ideas but I guess not.  he even mentions at the end how there is no known connection between land use and first order forcing but he persists.  I really can't figure out why.  It's not quite as bad as Scafetta's orbital nonsense, but the fierce the defense of unquantified forcing is similar.

 

Yes dana, we can wait, but let's not leave that policy preference question hanging.  I'm sure we can pin him down to 'No delayed warming' and 'i don't like large scale mitigation policy'.  Then it all makes sense to people.

2011-09-20 05:44:32
Andy S

skucea@telus...
66.183.179.249

This looks good to me. Good job.

As for the questions at the end you might want to add one to ask for Pielke's answers to his own questions. The second question you have shouldn't have the word "unacceptable", since that's subjective. Simply ask him how bad the risk from AGW might be and what he thinks the worst case scenario might entail.

2011-09-20 05:47:21
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana,

I would urge you to inlcude the OA as a separate question that is phrase din a way that it affords him to focus on the problem, otherwise he can choose to ignore it or not address it directly.  We want him to unequivocally state his position on it.  If he agrees witht he science than we can point out what Spencer says.  If he agrees with Spencer, then he just looks bad.  But I expect an answer similar to what Spencer said recently:

"WHAT ABOUT OCEAN ACIDIFICATION FROM MORE CO2?
The chemistry of the ocean is still poorly understood from the standpoint of how it varies over time, and how it is controlled. There is a common view among oceanographers that extra atmospheric CO2 has caused the average pH of the ocean to be reduced from 8.18 to 8.10 since the start of the Industrial Revolution. But pH varies widely across the global oceans, and that estimated decrease is more of a ‘theoretically-calculated expectation’ than it is an actual observation. A minority view I have heard is that the buffering capacity of the ocean will prevent ocean acidification. In fact, recent evidence suggests that (just like plants on land) plankton in the ocean will grow faster and be more abundant with more CO2 in the atmosphere."

Gee, I guess what happened to the oceans during the PETM was just imaginary ;)

2011-09-20 05:50:11
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Andy,

"As for the questions at the end you might want to add one to ask for Pielke's answers to his own questions"

Good idea, and ask him whether or not he has plans to apologize to John C while he is at it ;)

We can answer our own questions easily-- it has all been covered here at SkS (although I am nervous about Q1).

2011-09-20 06:23:37
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Alby - Q1 was actually my very first post on SkS (quantifying man-made warming).  Meehl 2004 is an excellent paper on the subject.  That question is in my comfort zone.

I'll make OA into #3 and bump the last one to #4.

Do we want to ask Pielke for answers to his own questions?  If we do, he's going to go off on very long-winded explanations.  As it is, I'm sure he'll weigh in with his opinions about our answers.  Do we need his answers specifically?

2011-09-20 06:50:40
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Hi Dana,

Re Q1, great!  I found it here.  I thnk that Gavin Schmidt has also looke dat that question, but it is not a paper.

 

I bet he comes back with this from DelSole et al. (2011):

"The warming and cooling of the IMP matches that of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation and is of suffcient amplitude to explain the acceleration in warming during 1977-2008 as compared to 1946-1977, in spite of the forced component increasing at the same rate during these two periods"

And

"Observational estimates indicate that the trend in the spatially averaged “well observed” sea surface temperature (SST) due to the forced component has an approximately constant value of 0.1 K decade−1, while the IMP can contribute about ±0.08 K decade−1 for a 30-yr trend."

If I am understanding this correctly that is up to 80% from natural variability for a 30 year trend. He will ignore this though (from the same paper):

"The amplitude and time scale of the IMP are such that its contribution to the trend dominates that of the forced component on time scales shorter than 16 yr, implying that the lack of warming trend during the past 10 yr is not statistically significant."

And

"While the IMP can contribute significantly to trends for periods of 30 yr or shorter, it cannot account for the 0.8°C warming that has been observed in the twentieth-century spatially averaged SST."

 

From the nuts and bolts of the paper:

"If the IMP is tted to a first order autoregressive model based 15 on its 1-year lag autocorrelation of 0.806, then the 95% con dence interval for the IMP varies with trend period length as shown in fig. 8. Note that the con dence interval increases rapidly with decreasing trend period length. For reference, the con dence interval is +/-0.169 K/decade for 16-year trends, +/- 0.0776 K/decade for 32-year trends, and +/-0.031 for 64-year trends. By comparison, the trend for the forced pattern is about 0.1 K/decade, which is close to the con dence interval for the IMP trend for 25-year periods. On 10-year time scales, variability in trend due to the IMP is relatively large (e.g., +/- 0.265 K/decade) and can easily overwhelm the trend due to the forced component, although variability due to interannual variability, such as El Nino, also becomes important on this time scale. This framework provides a consistent and plausible explanation for why trends vary so strongly on 10-year time scales, and indicate that the lack of warming trend during the past 11 years (1998-2008) is not suffcient to conclude that the long term rate of warming has changed"

 

"Do we want to ask Pielke for answers to his own questions?  If we do, he's going to go off on very long-winded explanations."

Yup, that is one very real danger-- hmmm, not sure what to do.  Maybe best to leave it for now, at least until he has answered our questions.

2011-09-20 06:58:49
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana,

From the IPCC AR4 WGI on attribution,

"Difficulties remain in attributing temperature changes on smaller than continental scales and over time scales of less than 50 years"

I would ask him to quantify how much of the observed warming in the last 100 years or so.

2011-09-20 07:03:51
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

dana & alby,

Get real: Do you think there is any way you will be able to STOP him from telling you what he believes the correct answers are?

2011-09-20 07:18:27
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Err Neal, no, of course not.  But maybe best not to serve him the question on a platter.

My goal is to make him squirm and perhaps tell a few fibs and make some cherry-picks in the process. 

2011-09-20 07:26:16
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

There's a difference between him volunteering the information and us asking him for it.  If nothing else, if he volunteers long-winded answers, it makes it look like he only asked the questions so that he could answer them himself (which frankly may very well be the case).  In other words, he looks like he's interested in giving himself a soapbox, not in a real exchange with us.

If we ask him, we're inviting him to get on the soapbox, and we're also helping him dictate the direction of the discussion.

Alby - how about we ask for both 50 and 100 year attribution?  I can give reasonable answers for both.

2011-09-20 07:36:28
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana,

Re 50 or 100, sure.  Have you had a look at Table 1 in DelSole (2011)?  I'm not sure what that says in terms of the observed contribution form the IMP.  To me those data in Table 1 suggest that much less than 0.08 K/decade from the IMP contributed to the observed warming, my estimate base don those data is a value near +0.03 K/decade.  That would be about 20% of wamring from the IMP. So the +0.0776 K/ decade is the 95% upper bound, i.e., the maximum contribution.  It is easy to misinterpret that 9as I did) as the expected contribution.  Have I got that right?

In contrast for 1946-1977 about 67% of the cooling (appears to have come from the IMP.

For 1946-2008 there is no contribution to thE total wamring trend from IMP as far as I can tell.

2011-09-20 07:49:47
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Sure looks that way Alby:

1977 - 2008 Total Observations 0.145
1977 - 2008 Forced + IMP 0.166
1977 - 2008 Forced Only 0.122
1946 - 2008 Total Observations 0.0909
1946 - 2008 Forced + IMP 0.096
1946 - 2008 Forced Only 0.103

So basically DelSole says the global warming acceleration starting in 1977 was partly due to natural cycles, but from 1946 the trend is basically all due to external forcing.  In fact IMP has had a net cooling effect since 1946. 

Don't miss the key word in the sentence:

"while the IMP can contribute about ±0.08 K decade−1 for a 30-yr trend."

Also bear in mind he's only looking at SSTs too, not taking into account the substantial warming over land.

2011-09-20 08:04:38
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Hi Dana,

Thanks.  Good to know that I got something right today.  So on that high note, I'll get back to work.  Have a good night all :)

2011-09-20 08:43:20DelSole
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

That paper would be good to do a post on and add to the "it's internal variability" rebuttal too.

2011-09-20 08:54:37
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Sorry if someone has already suggested this (I haven't read the entire thread), but if I had to ask a question of Pielke it would be this:

"Do you believe that Spencer and Lindzen's claims of low climate sensitivity (~0.5C for 2XCO2) square with the larger body of evidence on climate?  Specifically, if they are correct are we not left with no explanation of glacial-interglacial cycles and a large number of other understood events in the paleoclimate record?"

2011-09-20 09:20:38
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Pielke has made it a point to argue "climate sensitivity doesn't matter".  It's part of his "climate scientists are too focused on surface temps" schtick.  So I'm reluctant to bring the subject up, because he'll go off on a tangent about how it doesn't matter.

Though that is a more specific formulation of the question, and one I'd like to know the answer to.  Maybe it's worth adding in.  I'll make it #2 for now - anybody object?

2011-09-20 09:27:42latest version
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

SkS Responses to Pielke Sr. Questions

2011-09-20 09:42:48
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.57.69

- The jump from the ending of our answers to the listing of our questions is too abrupt. Something should be said to smooth that out. "Now that we have answered your questions, there are a few issues on which we would like to understand your perspective." Something like that.

- For our questions 3 - 5, it seems to me that it would make sense to specify some kind of timeframe in order to make the question more meaningful.

2011-09-20 09:58:36
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Done.

2011-09-20 10:06:15
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana and Rob,  Not sure whether or not you have seen this, but this is what Pielke thinks about "climate sensitivity"

http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2011/09/09/so-called-climate-sensitivity-a-dance-on-the-head-of-a-pin/

"The bottom line conclusion is that the assessment of risks to key resources, including threats from climate variability and climate change, based on the magnitude of a so-called “climate sensitivity“, is a fatally flawed framework for developing effective adaptation and mitigation policies to reduce those risks.  "

2011-09-20 10:19:24
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Yeah, hence my point at 9:20 AM.  However, Rob's question is framed very specifically.  It's a question about the inconsistency of the argument when paleoclimate data is taken into account - we're not talking policy here.  If Pielke steers his answer in that direction, it will just look like he's dodging the question.  Then we can come back with "just answer the question please".

2011-09-20 12:29:04comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.162.53

I have to say I still take issue with the statement regarding the model versus observations discrepancy. Most models do overpredict the warming, though we now know why (aerosols).

A recent post on the Air Vent shows this from a new paper:
http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2011/09/11/corroboration-again/

I think straight up saying that the models match the observations in temperature is something we will be slammed for because it is easy to refute. Honestly I myself don't think the statement is jusitfied but that the discrepancy is for a good reason. Lets not give them fodder... We both know Pielke is going to respond by pointing to any of these papers (or the one by MM10) or even ones by AGW proponents that show they don't match.

2011-09-20 13:26:40
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Robert - they do match up over a 20 year period. At least with GISTEMP.  I can take the average of GISS and Hadley, though personally i'm not a big Hadley fan because of the lack of Arctic coverage.  But the GISTEMP trend over 20 years is 0.2°C per century, which is what models project.  10 years they don't, but that's not statistically significant.

The paper you reference is talking about TLT, which we say is below model projections.

2011-09-20 13:30:53Suggestion
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.98.161

I concur with Riccardo's general assessment of Pielke's questions:, i.e., "don't take his questions too seriously, they don't deserve it."

There's no need to rush posting a respnse. Let's let this simmer and see if Pielke respond's to JC's "Blimp Post."

BTW, the more stuff that I read on Pielke's blog, the more convinced I become that he sees himself as somehow above the fray trying to bring order out of chaos. He's definitely got an ego that won't quit.  

2011-09-20 13:55:26
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Robert,

I'm surprised that you provided that link.  First, Fu et al. (2011) deals only with the tropics and the ratio surface and lower-troposphere warming, so it is not a global comparison-- the "skeptics" seem obsessed witthe tropics, perhaps b/c they do not understand the actual meaning or significance of the "hot spot", or that the sparse and problem plagued data there happen to give results that are in their favour.  Second, Robert why is no mention is made of Thorne et al. (2010) or Johnson and Xie (2010) in Patrick Condon's blog post.  Why?  I'll tell you why, b/c they refute Christy et al. (2010).

Specifically, Thorne et al. (2010) find:
"It is concluded that there is no reasonable evidence of a fundamental disagreement between tropospheric temperature trends from models and observations when uncertainties in both are treated comprehensively."

Johnson and Xie (2010) find:
"We conclude that, in contrast with some observational indications, the tropical troposphere has warmed in a way that is consistent with moist-adiabatic adjustment, in agreement with global climate model simulations."

Fu et al. (2011) actually delve into the details and try and figure out what is going on in the tropics.  It is not a paper validating global temperature trends like Santer et al. (2011).  Nevertheless, this part is even highlighed by Condon:

"While satellite MSU/AMSU observations generally support GCM results with tropical deep‐layer tropospheric warming faster than surface, it is evident that the AR4 GCMs exaggerate the increase in static stability between tropical middle and upper troposphere during the last three decades"


"I think straight up saying that the models match the observations in temperature is something we will be slammed.."

Yes, the models are running too warm globally (see Fig. 6 in Santer et al. (2011), just not anywhere nearly as bad as claimed by Christy et al. So I think that needs to be stated candidly and clearly and a link provided to Santer et al. (2011)--which Dana already does, but perhaps the wording can be improved.  Can you perhaps suggest the appropriate wording Robert?  Thanks.  I'm referring to this:

"The [global] surface temperature change is roughly consistent with model predictions.  The predicted [near global] TLT trend is approximately 0.26°C per decade." [my addition]

From RealClimate (for 1984-2010):

"For the GISTEMP and HadCRUT3, the trends are 0.19+/-0.05 and 0.18+/-0.04ºC/dec (note that the GISTEMP met-station index has 0.23+/-0.06ºC/dec and has 2010 as a clear record high).

For reference, the trends in the AR4 models for the same period have a range 0.21+/-0.16 ºC/dec (95%)."

 

  1. Now I'm confused.  RC say 0.21 C per decade , Santer et al. say near 0.26 C per decade?  Which is it?  I do not have a PDF of Santer et al. (2011).
  2. It might also be prudent to compare the projections with TLT and Tsfc (Land-Ocean) in addition to TLT (one should not assume the TLT are perfect.
  3. I see that ERA-interim now goes back to 1979. Robert, would it be a lot of work to calc. the global Tsfc and lower trop trend for that period?

And I'll show one of my fav graphs again (and yes I know the sondes have issues too, but the point is that I doubt that the surface warming is being exaggerrated much, if at all):

From the IPCC:

"The range (due to different data sets, but not including the reanalyses) of global surface warming since 1979 from Figure 3.18 is 0.16°C to 0.18°C per decade compared to 0.12°C to 0.19°C per decade for MSU estimates of tropospheric temperatures."

In AR4 they say:

"For the next two decades a warming of about 0.2°C per decade is projected for a range of SRES emissions scenarios"


So where does 0.26 C come from?

2011-09-20 14:25:34
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

whoops, double post

2011-09-20 14:28:52
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Alby, Santer is TLT.  RC and Robert are talking surface temps.  Models project the TLT trend should be 20% higher than the surface trend.

2011-09-20 14:38:15
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Dana,

I get that-- I was trying to suggest including model comparison for both the surface and the lower trop. and make sure that it is clear we are talking about (near) global temps. 

So the models are forecasting a greater amount of warming globally in the lower trop (0.26/decade) than they are at the surface (0.21/decade)? That does not seem right to me-- but I'm really, really tired right now.  Does this have anything to the "amplification" factor  of 1.1 to 1.25 over that Schmidt has talked about?

2011-09-20 14:44:39
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.106.125

Yeah it's this bit:

"For reference, the amplification is related to the sensitivity of the moist adiabat to increasing surface temperatures (air parcels saturated in water vapour move up because of convection where the water vapour condenses and releases heat in a predictable way)."

{...}

"I calculated the land-only, ocean-only and global mean temperatures and MSU-LT values for 5 ensemble members, then I looked at the trends in each of these timeseries and calculated the ratios. Interestingly, there was a significant difference between the three ratios. In the global mean, the ratio was 1.25 as expected and completely in line with the results from other models. Over the oceans where most tropical moist convection occurs, the amplification in the model is greater – about a factor of 1.4. However, over land, where there is not very much moist convection, which is not dominated by the tropics and where one expects surface trends to be greater than for the oceans, there was no amplification at all!"

2011-09-20 15:05:13comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.162.53

Haven't had too much time to read all of this but I will say that James Annan is certainly more credible than Fu et al (2011)

http://julesandjames.blogspot.com/2010/05/assessing-consistency-between-short.html


"I'm a bit surprised you supplied that link"
I'm certainly no fan of Cordon but to be honest there are times when the skeptics make good points. Lets face it, Cordon and some of the lukewarmers are the ones who have put in the best work on actually making a global temperature index. They've shown the biases inside the NCDC method, Hadleys method and Gistemps method and found better ways to answer the question of how have temperature changes occurred.

"skeptics are obsessed with the tropics"
That's certainly readily identifiable within the literature that the skeptics like to cherry pick that region. That being said there are issues with data from other regions particularly the Arctic and Antarctica. On a related note a paper came out slamming ERA-40s Arctic Temp data as overestimating trends (Journal of Climate).

"Now i'm confused"
Me too to be honest. I've seen the 0.26 number elsewhere also.

What do I suggest?
The global surface temperature change is slightly less than those predicted by ensemble means from model runs but is still roughly consistent with model predictions. Discrepancies between models and observations are likely in part caused by the exclusion of negative forcings from increased anthropogenic and volcanic aerosol emissions not included in model runs.


2011-09-20 15:16:13
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Thanks Robert.  Annan:

"As for the interpretation...well this is where it gets debatable, of course. People may not be entitled to their own facts, but they are entitled to reasonable interpretations of these facts. Clearly, over this time interval, the observed trends lie towards the lower end of the modelled range. No-one disputes that. But at no point do they go outside it, and the lowest value for any of the surface obs is only just outside the cumulative 5% level."

What do you think about the wording Dana?

Night, night.

PS:  Re the surface GATs, i agree  that they are not perfect, but i would take CCC's endoresement over those of the alleged lukewarmers any day.  I might pay more attention if and when they get something in print in a reputable journal.

2011-09-20 15:32:59comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.162.53

Re Surface GATs:

It is a little interesting that their work has shown how hadleys method will always have lower trends than actual and when properly done how the earth is in fact warming quicker than noted elsewhere. They should get something in print.

From a private email:

Here is a quote from Mosher, you know... the guy who published the book on climategate...

"As far as the debate goes the more time I have spent working on this stuff the more annoyed I get at my skeptical opponents. In some cases really annoyed to the point of we dont talk anymore. For me it was one thing to have doubts. I had some doubt, I worked to remove it.  I had questions about how this was done. Figured it out.  Doubt removed or diminished."

For the record this is from a private email. I don't want to see this anywhere, me and him are on very good terms regarding some mutual GAT work.

Per Annan:
he's not a fan of the method at all anyways (nor am I). Ensemble means are pretty much useless but it is the "approved" IPCC technique. MMH2010 published a paper back in the day comparing models to observations also (tropical) and as expected they were pretty low comparatively... that being said I have to wonder about some things like their very small error bars on the model ensembles and the large ones on the observations but anyways...

My wording is probably shit to be honest but I think we can be aloof and say that they are consistant when realistically that argument is not one I'm willing to defend. Nor do I think we should. As i've said about 5 times now, the fact that the models predict it to be warmer is proof we got it right given the things excluded... IF the models and the observations matched right now that would be more worrying because it would imply we have the forcings wrong (given the missed forcings).

2011-09-20 17:40:18
Riccardo

riccardoreitano@tiscali...
192.84.150.209

The last three questions require a value judgement and are related to policy. Sure we want to go this way?

2011-09-21 01:36:28
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
64.129.227.4

Will tweak the temperature wording slightly.  Riccardo - I think it's worth getting Pielke's opinions on the last 3 questions.  We might just drop it at that point, depending on his answers.  Will publish this now.

2011-09-21 01:52:55
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Thanks for including that question, Dana.  I think he will likely say climate sensitivity is unimportant but we'll need to press him that the question is not whether it's important or not but whether Spencer, Christy and Lindzen's assertions can be rationally justified within the larger body of published literature.

2011-09-21 02:12:00A & Q's posted
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.104.94

Has anyone notified Pielke?

2011-09-21 02:26:55
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

No worries Robert. That quote is not going anywhere.  

What you shared is not very consistent with his actions in the real world. I'll be perfectly candid with you Robert, I do not like Mosher, he is duplicitous, arrogant, vindictive and does not mean well.  It will take some big changes by him to address my concerns about him and his objectives in this debate.

Yes, I am aware of how to extract the best information from ensembles.  Maybe they will try some new methods and representations in AR5.  But I hear from James that there is resistance-- people set in their "old" ways.....

 

2011-09-21 03:57:21comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.162.53

Yeah I agree, 
as james has noted on his blog there is an old guard that does not want to move forward on this stuff and that sort of attitude is present elsewhere too... much to the detriment of the actually science in some cases.

Re Mosher:
He's coming around. I used to really not like him and argued with him quite frequently over on CA and other threads but I think that he's slowly coming around which is interesting because he was right in the thick of things... It's a good sign and a sign that we are somewhat winning...

2011-09-21 04:03:45
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

I hope that you are right Robert, I really do....but I do remain skeptical.

To get back on topic, did you know that ERA-interim now goes back to 1979?  So one can compare those data with the satellites and GAT records for the whole satellite ERA.  I'm making a not so subtle hint here ;)

2011-09-21 06:29:02comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.162.53

Fineeee i'll get to it. but I have to say that I hope ERA-interim is not going to have the issues that we've got with ERA-40...

2011-09-21 07:05:57re Mosher
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.104.94

I've had limited, but very mixed, interactions with him.

There's an old saying: "The fool who persists in his folly will become wise." I guess that's the nature of science.