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Posts Tagged ‘Weather’

Incredibly Accurate Climate Forecast For 2011

2011/01/02 12 comments

(no £33M supercomputer was harmed in the making of this blog)

  • All atmospheric, oceanic, glacial, geological and public-health phenomena with any kind of negative impact will be linked to (anthropogenic) global warming with no shortage of experts confirming how we’d known that all along, and of computer models showing how obvious those consequences have always been
  • No atmospheric, oceanic, glacial, geological and public-health phenomena lacking any kind of negative impact will be linked to (anthropogenic) global warming
  • Romm will continue his fishing expeditions, hoping this or that weather-related mass killing can be taken advantage of, in order to promote the concept of anthropogenic global warming
  • Hansen will get (willingly) arrested once or twice, ready to proclaim 2011 as the warmest year ever, mostly due to extremes of heat in faraway places devoid of people and weather stations
  • McKibben will get even thinner, and just as ineffectual, while identifying new enemies forever closer to himself
  • RealClimate will keep its absurdist censorship policy, and in post after post the Team will “demonstrate” their intellectual superiority
  • Skeptical Science will keep building climate salad surgeries to no end, sprinkling statements of various robustness with seemingly limitless references to the Literature, to be used by the lazy and most scientifically-ignorant among its readership (i.e. the journalists)
  • The Climate Change Rapid Response Team will say nothing of relevance that hasn’t been already said
  • The nastiest criticisms by rabid AGWers will be thrown in the direction of Curry
  • Revkin will keep reaffirming his absolute confidence in mainstream AGW science despite the evidence to the contrary presented in Revkin’s blog
  • Pielke Jr will be distracted by other things, thereby avoiding Revkin’s problem
  • The IPCC will make sure nothing really is changed in its procedures or results
  • McIntyre will be made privy to secret information showing how deeply unpopular in the mainstream climate community is anything remotely linked to McIntyre
  • Goddard (S.) will publish his 25,000th blog post
  • Goddard (NASA’s) will discover that recent thermometer readings must be adjusted upwards, and past ones downwards, for purely scientific reasons of course
  • Watts will be criticized (for being Watts and) for providing web space to people with strange theories
  • ScienceOfDoom will busy himself with explaining the first law of thermodynamics (again!) thereby missing all the fun
  • Connolley will not notice the rest of the planet
  • Tamino will pop up once around here and other places, posting an inane, canned comment that could be written in reply to any other blog post written by anybody on any topic
  • Some people with a very nasty mindset will suggest that the glowing comments to Tamino’s posts might as well have been written by people sharing the same identical DNA with Tamino
  • The recipient of the 2010 Edward Davis Wood, Jr.’s Climate “Blogging Turkey” Award will sink to new lows
  • The art of obfuscating FOI and non-FOI answers will be perfected by the CRU and the BBC
  • Popular media will be filled by photographic reports about a changing climate, with no picture showing anything remotely connected to climate change in a proper scientific way
  • Popular media will be filled by countless breakthroughs in climate science showing how worse it is than we thought
  • Scientifically speaking, there will not be any breakthrough in climate science
  • A very large number of well-known and otherwise knowledgeable scientists will make complete asses of themselves by appearing on TV and in print with idiotic regurgitations of mainstream AGW theory, mostly inconsistent with the very statements made by the IPCC
  • If the weather will keep cold, a major European scientific institution will break ranks with mainstream AGW theory before the summer
  • Popular interest will wane as most people will be titillated about the 2012 “end of the world” instead
  • The EU will find new ways to use climate change to transfer money to the rich, and to China
  • China will happily go along the EU cash-transfer schemes
  • The US Congress and President will strike a united front in protecting climate-change-related pork (money not meat)

And finally for the real world…

  • It will rain, otherwise it will be sunny, foggy, cloudy or overcast. It will snow in places, with sandstorms in other places (or the same ones). It will be cold, then hot, then cold again, or viceversa more or less overall. Some droughts, some floods, and places experiencing drizzle. Unprecedented weather will be experienced for the 200,000th year running, with lack of morals among humans indicated as main culprit for the 200,000th time as well
  • Many people will die of poverty in weather-related events around the world, with the keys being “poverty” and “weather” but all action concentrated on “climate change”
  • Children will keep dying of soot, while the world concerns itself with CO2 emissions only
  • Elderly people will keep dying of fuel poverty, while the world concerns itself to increase fuel prices in order to reduce CO2 emissions
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New (Fun!) Survey Of Global Warming Evidence

2010/02/10 4 comments

Evidence Of Global Warming Keeps Accumulating

2010/02/09 13 comments

Bad Astronomer, Worse Climatologist

2010/01/21 9 comments

There we go again…another Defender of The Science mixing up “weather” and “climate”. Will Phil be convinced by my “Space-Time has digested AGW” argument?

Maybe not. After all, who am I to pretend to be a climatologist. Well, then , perhaps the head of climate impacts at the Met Office Hadley Centre will make the Bad Astronomer change his mind.

people often make the same mistake but in the other direction, and link every heatwave, major flood, drought and famine to global warming.

Of course, we know that these things happen anyway, even without climate change – they may happen more often under a warmer climate, but it is wrong to blame climate change for every single event.

Climate scientists know this, but still there are people outside of climate science who will claim or imply such things if it helps make the news or generate support for their political or business agenda.

Bad Astronomer plus Official Minion

Bad Astronomer plus Official Minion

I have known the Bad Astronomer for many years (I have even met him once and he appreciated some “scientific” investigative job of mine) and he’s up there in my scientific Pantheon about Astronomy (and not just Astronomy).

Plait is also doing a great job in fighting the child-killing practices of the anti-vaxxers. And to prevent the silliness of creationists from spreading. He should then realize his own heavy responsibility in not placing himself at the forefront of misusing science.

Who Cares About Climate? – 2- AGW, As Solid As Hot Air

People are victims of the weather. But if “the weather” is not “the climate“, then people are not victims of “the climate“. Therefore: why should anybody care about “the climate“?

What is all this talk about climate change for, and about?

Part 1 has shown how weeks if not months of “it’s weather, not climate” defenses of AGW mean the evaporation of the very concept of “climate” as used in AGW circles. Close scrutiny in temporal or spatial terms automatically excludes the possibility to talk about “climate”.

This leads to an even bigger problem. As already quoted from a NOAA page

In short, climate is the description of the long-term pattern of weather in a particular area. […] When scientists talk about climate, they’re looking at averages of precipitation, temperature, humidity, sunshine, wind velocity, phenomena such as fog, frost, and hail storms, and other measures of the weather that occur over a long period in a particular place.

But people are affected not by averages: rather, by actual events.

Statistical voyeurism

Statistical voyeurism

It is not for lack of examples that Mark Twain talked about “lies, damned lies and statistics“: apart from cricket, there is no sport where the outcome of a match is based on an average of past (or expected future) performances. Likewise: nobody dies because of of the long-term pattern of weather in a particular area…people suffer because of hurricanes, of heatwaves, of many other atmospheric “short-term patterns”, and especially of cold temperatures.

People are victims of the weather. People are not victims of “the climate”.

One can look at this same problem from another side. Read Andrew Freedman at the WP’s Capital Weather Gang:

A larger problem with the media’s approach to covering the recent cold is that it ignores how people tend to think about climate change, which is squarely in the context of extreme weather and climate events. Such events are much more tangible to everyday experience than long-term climate change is, but they are not always related to climate change. Sometimes weather is just weather.

The keyword there is “tangible“. In fact, how did the Guardian’s David Adam write a few months ago about the “scenarios…of how global warming will unfold across Britain as published by “scientists at the Met Office Hadley Centre“?

And now for the weather. The 2020s are looking warm and dry, with occasional heavy winter showers. The 2050s should be sunny and warm, with scattered deaths due to heatwaves across London and the south-east. And looking ahead to the 2080s, temperatures could reach 41C, so be sure to pack the suncream for your picnic. And watch out for those great white sharks!

And now for the weather…”. QED.

I am perfectly aware of the fact that it is a rhetorical device used to capture the reader’s attention. That is in fact my point: it is very difficult if not impossible to visualize (and care about) something unless it happens as a physical manifestation rather than as a statistical occurrence.

What is an “increase” in “averages of precipitation, temperature, humidity, sunshine, wind velocity, phenomena such as fog, frost, and hail storms, and other measures of the weather“? Who knows? Instead: “For the UK […] a future of balmy Mediterranean summers“, writes George Monbiot at the time of the Hadley Centre report.

Now, that is something that can be understood. AGW- and therefore climate-related communication has to include some sort of event, as in the infamous David Viner’s quote from 2000:

According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said.

After all, at some point “climate change” will have to happen, if AGW is correct. So there must be a series of “AGW events”…but if all events are “weather” and not “climate“, then…why should anybody care about “the climate“?

===========

If you can’t use more or less any weather event to talk about climate, the only logical consequence is that climatology is being confined to a generic suggestion that it may going to be hot, perhaps, likely more often than in the past. The Met Office’s Richard Betts in the BBC Green Room:

Of course, we know that these things [a series of “warmest” years] happen anyway, even without climate change – they may happen more often under a warmer climate, but it is wrong to blame climate change for every single event.

The gain in accuracy of such generic statements is more than compensated by their utter lack of usefulness, as suggested here by William M. “Statistician to the Stars” Briggs:

you do not need to have a model for past data if all you want to say is it was “high” or “low” or whatever

And so the question arises for the n-th time…if to talk about “climate” means to state pretty useless assertions…why should anybody care about “the climate“?

Who Cares About Climate? – 1- How Space-Time Digested AGW

2010/01/20 18 comments

People are victims of the weather. But if “the weather” is not “the climate“, then people are not victims of “the climate“. Therefore: why should anybody care about “the climate“?

What is all this talk about climate change for, and about?

Alas, thanks to the staunch defence of AGW no matter what, it is about almost nothing. I have already written how very little there is to show for AGW (most if not all issues are firmly expected for sometimes in the future). And now, whatever AGW has become, it is turning into a ghost of itself in front of our very eyes, because of insurmountable problems of time (and space) .

The Time Dimension of AGW

World temperatures haven’t gone anywhere for at least a decade, hurricanes haven’t been battering like it’s 2005, and the Arctic sea ice cover hasn’t shrunk as in 2007. And yet in an apparent effort to insulate AGW theory from actual observation of the physical world, there is no shortage of people pontificating that the IPCC consensus is safe, because:

  • whatever we observe in the here-and-now is “weather”
  • the IPCC consensus is about “climate”
  • “climate” is not “weather”
  • “climate” is “weather” averaged over 30 years (who knows why, 30 and not 22 or 100?)

This from a NOAA page discussing the difference between “weather” and “climate”

In short, climate is the description of the long-term pattern of weather in a particular area.

Some scientists define climate as the average weather for a particular region and time period, usually taken over 30-years. It’s really an average pattern of weather for a particular region.

When scientists talk about climate, they’re looking at averages of precipitation, temperature, humidity, sunshine, wind velocity, phenomena such as fog, frost, and hail storms, and other measures of the weather that occur over a long period in a particular place.

The insulation of this vaporous average of a thing called “climate” from experienced “weather” events is near to perfect. For example, Leo Hickman and George Monbiot dismiss the significance of “single events” in the Guardian’s Environment blog:

weather […] believe it or not, it is not always predictable and it changes quite often. It is not the same as climate, and single events are not the same as trends

Revkin goes as far as talking of weather and climate going in opposite directions:

In the last few days, a notable conjunction occurred when these two men [Hansen and Watts] essentially agreed on something: that the planet — despite a lot of very cold patches — is unusually warm.

But the reasoning goes both ways: the same distinction between “weather” and “climate” can be applied to every alleged AGW manifestation on short timescales. Each melting glacier, each heatwave, each single-year or even decadal decrease in Arctic ice is “weather”.

And so we are left in this limbo, where “climate change impacts are already evident” even if they cannot possibly be.

The Space Dimension of AGW

The “G” in AGW means “global”. AGW is meant to apply to the world as a whole. But “climate” heavily depends on local effects, says Wikipedia:

The climate of a location is affected by its latitude, terrain, altitude, ice or snow cover, as well as nearby water bodies and their currents

Hansen agrees:

regional short‐term temperature fluctuations […] are an order of magnitude larger than global average annual anomalies

That is: “local climate” is “weather”, not “climate”. Hence, as explained by Luboš,

the global mean temperature is irrelevant for you and for everyone else, too. It didn’t help the hundreds of frozen people in India, the passengers whose flights were canceled, and millions of other people in the European, Asian, and American civilization centers

That’s not all: even assuming AGW is all fine and right, one should consider the result of “regional variations in radiative forcing“, as already mentioned years ago by Roger Pielke, Sr. :

regional diabatic heating due to human activities represents a major, but under-recognized climate forcing, on long-term global weather patterns. Indeed, this heterogenous climate forcing may be more important on the weather that we experience than changes in weather patterns associated with the more homogeneous spatial radiative forcing of the well-mixed greenhouse gases

AGW: No Close-ups, Please!

If you try to look at it at too fine a temporal detail (a decade or less), there is no such a thing as “climate” (or so we are told). Hence, AGW does not apply. If you try to look at it at too fine a spatial detail (a couple of decades or less), there is no such a thing as “climate” (or so we are told). Hence, AGW does not apply.

That is, weeks if not months of “it’s weather, not climate” defenses of AGW mean the evaporation of the very concept of “climate” as used in AGW circles.

Please somebody explain why should anybody still care about “the climate”…

(continues)

The same can be said about every alleged AGW manifestation on short timescales, from each melting glacier to each heatwave to each single-year or even decadal decrease in Arctic ice. And so we are left in this limbo, where “climate change impacts are already evident” http://www.jri.org.uk/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/JRI_18_Joseph.pdf even if they aren’t.

“Smart Planet” It Ain’t

2010/01/14 1 comment

I hereby nominate Dana Blankenhorn’s blog “That cold snap was global warming in action” as the dumbest of 2010 (so far).

The question now is: has that entry by itself removed any meaning from the website’s name? How can a place called “Smart Planet” get it so spectacularly wrong?

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