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Archive for April, 2010

Top 17 Signs Your Belief In Catastrophical AGW Is Going The Way Of The Dodos

2010/04/28 14 comments

Fellow AGWer! Are you worried you’re losing the climate debate? Worry no more. It’s a certainty in 17 easy-to-spot signs!!

  1. Main conversational topic among fellow believers are revolving around complaining the rest of the worls is made up of “deniers”
  2. Highlight of the month: a conference about climate change and the arts, closed by a truly inspiring dance act
  3. You’ve given credibility to fatuous claims about ill-behaving humans inducing global warming and ultimately causing bad things such as earthquakes, volcanoes
  4. Worse: an Iranian cleric has made moral remarks perfectly equivalent to yours: about ill-behaving humans (well, women…) ultimately causing bad things such as earthquakes
  5. Having waited for major legislation to materialize, you have seen it evaporating at the very last minute
  6. Worse: you’ve been spending time shoring support for major legislation that you agree would be wholly ineffectual even if it passed as dreamed
  7. Worst: the only reason to support such ineffectual bill proposal has been the remote chance it might show “leadership” (showing the world how to pass ineffectual legislation, one suspects)
  8. Worse than worst: well after the very last minute, you have openly withdrawn your support, thereby making sure nothing will ever happen
  9. You have celebrated the results of an “independent” committee setup by the British Government, even if the final report couldn’t help criticizing the IPCC in order to “pass the blame” to somebody
  10. Suddenly, the political and intellectual German classes has started to look the other way
  11. The BBC Science and Environment page is ever more struggling to find any news to report, about “global warming” and “climate change”, as all the potential physical manifestations have been quickly dismissed as “it’s weather not climate”
  12. Your preferred blogs have been chugging along tediously of late,  with naive, self-debasing and embarrassing remarks on the psychology of people that disagree with AGW catastrophism
  13. Miraculously, scientific papers have surfaced claiming the latest data support catastrophical global warming, despite the same latest data going the opposite way of previous data the same people claimed as supporting catastrophical AGW
  14. Worse: you have not noticed those are exactly the kind of claims that erode the public’s respect in AGW proponents, especially of the catastrophical variety
  15. The best answer you have had for months for your critics still concerns the well-being of people that haven’t even been born yet, and will do so in a future world we know about as much as Napoleon would have known of World War I and the trenches
  16. A great deal of people supporting your side have forever kept turning up dressed funny in front of cameras for the n-th repetition of ridiculous stunts that interest nobody any longer
  17. For months, nothing has appeared to make you happy and your blog and comments have been full only of depictions of future catastrophes. Yet when a volcano has threatened the lives and livestock of Iceland, and has stranded hundreds of thousands of people all over the world, you couldn’t contain yourself and started radiating your newly-found happiness, oblivious of the apparent nastiness and anti-human stance of yours it has shown to all

Cue ever-dwindling public and political support for your reality-challenged belief…

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If It Looks Like UHI, Heats Like UHI, And Graphs Like UHI, Then It Probably Is UHI

2010/04/26 3 comments

by Guido Guidi and Maurizio Morabito

Our friend Teo has just expressed his personal and perfectly reasonable opinions about new, old publishing venture called “Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change (WIRCC)“.

In fact, we find it hard to disagree with him.

The subject of Urban Heat Islands (UHI) is topical, and it is somewhat ironic that such a self-evident effect is so happily dismissed away by AGW proponents. One suspects UHI is extremely inconvenient and uncomfortable to consider to those strictly supporting only the greenhouse-gas-emission side of AGW theory.

Who them? By sheer coincidence, only the greenhouse-gas-emission side of AGW theory can be used to dictate deep societal changes. But that’s another story.

Let’s just add some considerations based on a Willis Eschenbach post on WUWT. It’s a simple but eloquent analysis of a dataset of temperatures, with measures coming from about seventy stations over Northern Europe. Interestingly, an analysis of the monthly data across the decades for the duration of the dataset, shows a warming trend to be occurring primarily in winter months.

NORDKLIM Decadal monthly temperatures, 1900-1999

NORDKLIM Decadal monthly temperatures, 1900-1999

And what kind of forcing is especially important in the coldest period of the year? No prize for guessing that one right. This is precisely what is expected from the UHI effect, and it is due to changes over time to the environment surrounding the measurement equipments. Roads, buildings, infrastructure are built, woods are fallen and so on. That’s “Anthropogenic” as well, of course, and it has all the potential for local and global consequences.

Data so heavily biased are simply not compatible with the currently fashionable “globalization of forcing“, the mistaken belief that temperatures overwhelmingly taken on land and in heavily urbanized areas, are representative of the thermal state of the entire Blue Planet.

Think of it for a minute. We are talking about temperature anomalies with a positive trend coming from winter months. We are talking of continental regions at high latitudes. We are talking about winters with little insolation, in areas with a high albedo (reflecting visible light!) due to large amounts of snow cover.

  • Temperature sensors, under those specific conditions, show a gradual Winter warming

In the summer, with a much lower visible-light albedo in the absence of snow, the incoming solar radiation is absorbed and then re-emitted as longer waves: exactly those “captured” by greenhouse gases.

  • Temperature sensors, despite the abundance of infrared radiation, show no Summer warming

How could the positive anomalies be ascribed to a greenhouse effect, that remains a mystery to us. It definitely looks like this is enough to ring more than a few alarm bells, no matter what has been said in the past and by whom.

And the problem of telling between the greenhouse gas contribution to warming, and all other anthropogenic and natural effects, does not just apply to urban setting. It remains to be seen about who’s going to care about it, bringing forward a better understanding of the climate, rather than continuing to run like headless chicken always after the next CO2 molecule, as if it were volcanic ash…

A Brief History Of Dashed UHI Hopes

2010/04/26 3 comments

by Teodoro Georgiadis – slightly romanced English version by Maurizio Morabito

And there I am, at the beginning of March 2010: me and the brand-new, Volume 1, Number 1 , January / February 2010 issue of “Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change (WIRCC)” . Editor in Chief: Mike Hulme.

Wow, a fresh journal on Global Climate Change!

Even better: according to itself, the journal is meant as

a unique platform for exploring current and emerging knowledge from the many disciplines that contribute to our understanding of this phenomenon – environmental history, the humanities, physical and life sciences, social sciences, engineering and economics

Wouldn’t that be a welcome novelty, in a world post-climategate, post-submerged Holland, post-quickly disappearing Himalayan glaciers, post-Amazongate…in short, in a world that has seen an intense and compact series of scientific downpours on concepts perhaps too quickly assumed as established truth.

Downstream of Copenhagen, a new journal following WIRCC’s statement of intent would surely sport a truly different outlook: new style, new peer-reviewers, new structure all with the goal of providing science with the required level of objectivity, sadly and mostly missing in contemporary climate discourse.

I proceed therefore with all enthusiasm to select an article of surefire interest to me:

David E. Parker, “Urban heat island effects on estimates of observed climate change” p 123-133, Published Online: Dec 22 2009 12:42PM DOI: 10.1002/wcc.21

That’s it then! Finally we can leave the “gates du jour” behind and improve our knowledge of climate change.

Or maybe not.

First reference: IPCC. Second reference: Jones et al. (with Wang).

Wait a sec…what’s going on?

OK let’s move forward…alas, only to find something truly amazing:

the influence of urban heat islands on estimates of global warming is limited by the fact that about 70% of the Earth’s surface is ocean and is absolutely unaffected by urban warming

Say what? Oh yes, the Blue Planet, ever the envy of nasty aliens such as those in HG Wells’ “War of the Worlds”. But hang on…most of the network of temperature measuring stations is literally on solid ground…if you place them on a map they’ll be a bunch of dots almost exactly superimposed to cities. As for the ocean temperatures, we know very well how they are derived.

This isn’t looking good.

Anything better?

Exclusion of urban sites, or selective use of rural sites, requires information (‘metadata’) about the site and its surroundings

Yes, yes…ah, that refers to a 2005 J Clim paper by Peterson and Owen…isn’t that the same Peterson unceremoniously criticized for example by McIntyre on Climate Audit, regarding the peculiar classifications of urban and rural stations? There is a truly remarkable definition of “Parking Lot Effect” on that site.

How strange though, of all the past and present discussions and questions on the topic, Parker manages to mention exactly nothing. Well, at least that might explain the article’s conclusions:

The urban heat island has had only a minor impact on estimates of global trends”… The impact is small because assiduous efforts have been made by the compilers of global surface air temperature records to avoid or compensate for urban warming

Assiduous effort“? Amen to that.

Current and EMERGING knowledge?” Not by a long shot.

My conclusions: “Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change (WIRCC)“? New journal, same old story.

The Best Way To Make People Worry About Climate Change…

2010/04/23 3 comments

…is to provide them with a university education, adequate living quarters in urban settings, and $100,000 in “investable asset”:

Climate change topped the list of concerns by some two-thirds of Hong Kong residents polled as well as majorities of residents of London, Paris, Sao Paolo, Toronto, Vancouver and Sydney, according to the poll of 2,044 urban residents around the world…The survey was conducted online from February 17 to March 1 among respondents who had university or post-graduate educations, were ages 25 to 64 and had at least $100,000 of investable asset…

(well, obviously under those conditions it should make it easier to have a little fewer of other concerns such as paying the mortgage, getting dinner organized, staying ahead of the bills)

Can’t wait to see thousands of self-styled environmentalists worldwide lobby their democratic representatives to defend the planet from climate change through a “Global Get Well Schooled, Urbanite And Rich Initiative“!

Now, that’s a Climate Campaign I would like to see started…just let me know where I can cash my $100,000, please?

UK Authorities To Impose A Ban On Lounges, Kitchens, Stairs And Ladders At Home

2010/04/22 7 comments

I will never apologise for putting safety first“, said Andrew Haines, chief executive of the British Government-controlled “Civil Aviation Authority” and formerly of “Great Western Trains” until last year.

Shall we bring Mr Haines’ logic to its natural conclusion? Why, 15,000 accidents occurred in the UK in “Lounge/study/living/dining/play areas” in 2002 alone (see HASS Table 4). A little less of 13,000 of those, in kitchens. If you sum them up, they total for around a fifth of all home accidents.

Now look at the HASS Table 2 at the same URL. A staggering 46% of all accidents concern one or another kind of falls.

Urgent initiatives are in order. A blanket ban on lounges, kitches, stairs and ladders shouldn’t be too far away. And it doesn’t have to stop there…don’t you know, “children under the age of 12 [are] the most likely of all those aged 16 and under to have reported being raped by someone they knew well” (explained as “typically refer[ring] to a friend or family member“).

Let’s outlaw families and friendship too.

An Illegal Volcano

EUFAR’s Measurement Flights Of Volcanic Ashes

2010/04/20 1 comment

Alas, the “major measurement news” are coming out slower than expected. Anyway: all those interested can head off to the European Facility for Airborne Research  (EUFAR), where a mailing list has been set up to share information (not sure if that’s open to the public yet).

Here’s EUFAR’s relevant page as of now:

Measurement flights of volcanic ashes

This page will be updated regularly with new information.

Next EUFAR teleconference tomorrow Wednesday 21st at 2:00 P.M. (CET)

  • to report what has been measured so far
  • to share experiences.

2 teleconferences took place to discuss the “Status about the volcanic ashes measurement flights”:
– on the 19/04/2010 – meeting 01
– on the 20/04/2010 – meeting 02.

A mailing list to exchange information about the ash measurements is already operational. Please contact bureau@eufar.net to subscribe or un-subscribe.
A webpage has also been created. It is available from the “What’s new?” section of the EUFAR website homepage http://www.eufar.net or directly at:http://www.eufar.net/wiki/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/EufarCMS/VolcanicAshes?skin=view.
A repository to share all the data collected within the aircraft operators and the scientific community will be set up by Wendy Garland from BADC. You will be informed when this is completed (in the next few days).

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