2014 as the Mildest Year: Why You are Being Misled on Global Temperatures

January 18th, 2015 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

OR: Why I Should Have Been an Engineer Rather than a Climate Scientist

I’ve been inundated with requests this past week to comment on the NOAA and NASA reports that 2014 was the “hottest” year on record. Since I was busy with a Japan space agency meeting in Tokyo, it has been difficult for me to formulate a quick response.

Of course, I’ve addressed the “hottest year” claim before it ever came out, both here on October 21, and here on Dec. 4.

In the three decades I’ve been in the climate research business, it’s been clear that politics have been driving the global warming movement. I knew this from the politically-savvy scientists who helped organize the U.N.’s process for determining what to do about human-caused climate change. (The IPCC wasn’t formed to determine whether it exists or whether is was even a threat, that was a given.)

I will admit the science has always supported the view that slowly increasing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere from burning of fossil fuels should cause some warming, but the view that this would is any way be a bad thing for humans or for Nature has been a politically (and even religiously) driven urban legend.

I am embarrassed by the scientific community’s behavior on the subject. I went into science with the misguided belief that science provides answers. Too often, it doesn’t. Some physical problems are simply too difficult. Two scientists can examine the same data and come to exactly opposite conclusions about causation.

We still don’t understand what causes natural climate change to occur, so we simply assume it doesn’t exist. This despite abundant evidence that it was just as warm 1,000 and 2,000 years ago as it is today. Forty years ago, “climate change” necessarily implied natural causation; now it only implies human causation.

What changed? Not the science…our estimates of climate sensitivity are about the same as they were 40 years ago.

What changed is the politics. And not just among the politicians. At AMS or AGU scientific conferences, political correctness and advocacy are now just as pervasive as as they have become in journalism school. Many (mostly older) scientists no longer participate and many have even resigned in protest.

Science as a methodology for getting closer to the truth has been all but abandoned. It is now just one more tool to achieve political ends.

Reports that 2014 was the “hottest” year on record feed the insatiable appetite the public has for definitive, alarming headlines. It doesn’t matter that even in the thermometer record, 2014 wasn’t the warmest within the margin of error. Who wants to bother with “margin of error”? Journalists went into journalism so they wouldn’t have to deal with such technical mumbo-jumbo. I said this six weeks ago, as did others, but no one cares unless a mainstream news source stumbles upon it and is objective enough to report it.

In what universe does a temperature change that is too small for anyone to feel over a 50 year period become globally significant? Where we don’t know if the global average temperature is 58 or 59 or 60 deg. F, but we are sure that if it increases by 1 or 2 deg. F, that would be a catastrophe?

Where our only truly global temperature measurements, the satellites, are ignored because they don’t show a record warm year in 2014?

In what universe do the climate models built to guide energy policy are not even adjusted to reflect reality, when they over-forecast past warming by a factor of 2 or 3?

And where people have to lie about severe weather getting worse (it hasn’t)? Or where we have totally forgotten that more CO2 is actually good for life on Earth, leading to increased agricultural productivity, and global greening?:

Estimated changes in vegetative cover due to CO2 fertilization between 1982 and 2010 (Donohue et al., 2013 GRL).

Estimated changes in vegetative cover due to CO2 fertilization between 1982 and 2010 (Donohue et al., 2013 GRL).

It’s the universe where political power and the desire to redistribute wealth have taken control of the public discourse. It’s a global society where people believe we can replace fossil fuels with unicorn farts and antigravity-based energy.

Feelings now trump facts.

At least engineers have to prove their ideas work. The widgets and cell phones and cars and jets and bridges they build either work or they don’t.

In climate science, whichever side is favored by politicians and journalism graduates is the side that wins.

And what about those 97% of scientists who agree? Well, what they all agree on is that if their government climate funding goes away, their careers will end.


156 Responses to “2014 as the Mildest Year: Why You are Being Misled on Global Temperatures”

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  1. Thanks, Dr. Spencer.
    This is much ado about nothing; NOAA wrote:
    Taking into account the uncertainty and assuming all years (1880-2014) in the time series are independent, the chance of 2014 being the warmest year on record: 48.0%
    See http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/2014/13/supplemental/page-1
    Worse chance of being right than a toss of a fair coin!

    • RB says:

      So 48%

      Or in other language, less likely than not.

      • Carrie Trask says:

        Every weather “expert” predicted that 2014 would be the “hottest” on record, not because of man made CO2…Because of EL NINO. NASA’s Jason-2 satellite suggested in 2013 that conditions at the equator were similar to conditions in 1997, supposedly the El Niño occurrence. There was no information for 2014.
        Also, according to NASA, because of the size of the Earth, it is IMPOSSIBLE to get an accurate temperature WITHOUT satellite data. Yet temperature graphs, which begin in 1880, were all below average..met in the middle, and then continually went up. There were no Satellites until the 1950’s..I would question any global temperature data BEFORE that..and how it is presented by the media TODAY.

        • Pat says:

          NOAA very conviently disappeared the effect of El Niño by saying it was outside the region that affects The Arctic Seas and near Alaska Pacific waters. Therefore they homogenized the dats by using the lhigher temperatures without adjustment. This is pure manipulation because actual meteorological data showed without doubt that El Niño extended warm water well into the Arctic.
          The overall satellite data showed the year unremarkable.,

      • janie jones says:

        In my 79.6 years I have seen many winters come and go. When was a small child I wore shorts and halters all winter long. They can’t tell me it is warmer.

  2. wyoskeptic says:

    With the greatest of respect, Dr. Spencer, what you have said sums it all up as well as anything I have read anywhere. Had you chosen another field of endeavor, we all would be the poorer for it. If there is any integrity left at all within the field, it is due to yourself and those like yourself who do dare speak the truth as they see it.

    I come to this area of contention late in life. I have spent a lifetime of working construction, of dealing with engineers, of doing some engineering myself in the field of control systems and instrumentation as it relates to providing drinking water for people. I have spent time as a water treatment plant operator, among other things, as well.

    I hope that I speak for most of those who have their feet firmly planted in the real world, that we appreciate all that you have to say, that you take the time to do so, (finding time to do that in this crazy old world with all the demands it places upon a person is not easy)and that you do so in a way that is respectful to all.

    A tip of the old Stetson in salute to you sir — and from this cantankerous old sob — that does not often happen.

  3. Ian says:

    Dr Spencer had you tried to get your comments published in one of the blogs in the MSM you’d have been banned for blasphemy. No one there cares about scientific integrity any more. They fawn at the feet of those who purvey the canard that 97% of scientists agree with AGW. In Climate Science scientific integrity is now an outdated concept a concept that demeans all scientists

    • jeff says:

      I’m in the middle of reading “Dark Winter” by Casey, which makes the claim that we are in store for a mini ice age, like the Dalton Minimum, or worse, like the Maunder Minimum (Viking colonies failing in Greenland). This is based on lack of sunspot activity correlating to lower temps on Earth, presumably due to lower solar radiant output. The interesting thing is he is saying his models are predicting the temp is going to be dropping this year (2015, or maybe the temp has already started dropping) and the impact will be severe, lasting for 30 years. I find it interesting that he predicts this year as the time of major temp drop, at the same time the AWG crowd is claiming 2014 as one of the hottest years in history. Maybe we can eliminate some of the claims in a year’s time.

      • Fonzarelli says:

        Probably not… The current solar cycle was, for a while, thought to be like those of the dalton minimum. But, it rebounded to be very similar to the one in the 1920’s. We may have to wait and see what happens with the next cycle before we pop the champagne…

  4. Lewis says:

    Dr. Spencer,
    Thank you for the timely comment. I read about the report in the WSJ, which reported it as written, and hoped you would take time to issue your opinion even though you had done so previously.

    Beyond that: a question for those who understand these things. I read that CO2 is increasing the acidity of the ocean waters which, of course, affects ocean life. To what degree etc, is this effect and is it only another scare the public tactic or ….?

    • John F. Hultquist says:

      About 4 years ago I spent more than a few hours reading about ocean water and its chemistry and things related to life therein. This is very complex but as you read it becomes clear that CO2 from carbon based fuels is not a problem and never will be. I suggest you find a few general things – I started with chemistry and biology texts used at the local university. Instructors usually have older editions and will give or loan them.
      You can search WUWT, Jo Nova, and other sites but at this point most discussions are beyond the basics.

    • You say: “I read that CO2 is increasing the acidity of the ocean waters which, of course, affects ocean life.”

      = = = = =

      That’s yet another bit of nonsense from the CAGW crowd. Just try to find out for yourself how it is possible that CO2 mixed with sea water to turn to acid. Well, it’s a very good fib to come out with because another name for CO2 is Carbonic Acid.

      In any case, the dogma is that the Oceans are supposed to get warmer. So, what happens to any gases that may be trapped in the seas? – They leave for the surface and the Atmosphere at an increased rate, that’s what.

    • Ron C. says:

      Lewis,
      On this topic, alarmists are contradicting IPCC science.

      Of course, the AR5 SPM features alarming statements, which are then second-guessed (undermined) by the actual science imbedded in the report details. The SPM asserts on Page 17 that fish habitats and production will fall and that ocean acidification threatens marine ecosystems.

      WGII Report, Chapter 6 covers Ocean Systems. There we find more nuance and objectivity:

      “Few field observations conducted in the last decade demonstrate biotic responses attributable to anthropogenic ocean acidification” pg 4

      “Due to contradictory observations there is currently uncertainty about the future trends of major upwelling systems and how their drivers (enhanced productivity, acidification, and hypoxia) will shape ecosystem characteristics (low confidence).” Pg 5

      “Both acclimatization and adaptation will shift sensitivity thresholds but the capacity and limits of species to acclimatize or adapt remain largely unknown” Pg 23

      “Production, growth, and recruitment of most but not all non-calcifying
      seaweeds also increased at CO2 levels from 700 to 900 µatm Pg 25

      “Contributions of anthropogenic ocean acidification to climate-induced alterations in the field have rarely been established and are limited to observations in individual species” Pg. 27

      “To date, very few ecosystem-level changes in the field have been attributed to anthropogenic or local ocean acidification.” Pg 39

      This is well summarized in the Senate Testimony of John T. Everett, in which he said:

      “There is no reliable observational evidence of negative trends that can be traced definitively to lowered pH of the water. . . Papers that herald findings that show negative impacts need to be dismissed if they used acids rather than CO2 to reduce alkalinity, if they simulated CO2 values beyond triple those of today, while not reporting results at concentrations of half, present, double and triple, or as pointed out in several studies, they did not investigate adaptations over many generations.”

      “In the oceans, major climate warming and cooling and pH (ocean pH about 8.1) changes are a fact of life, whether it is over a few years as in an El Niño, over decades as in the Pacific Decadal Oscillation or the North Atlantic Oscillation, or over a few hours as a burst of upwelling (pH about 7.59-7.8) appears or a storm brings acidic rainwater (pH about 4-6) into an estuary.”

      http://www.epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Files.View&FileStore_id=db302137-13f6-40cc-8968-3c9aac133b16

  5. Blair says:

    I wrote something very similar and the differences between those trained in a Type I error avoidance community versus those trained in a Type II error avoidance community.

    http://achemistinlangley.blogspot.ca/2015/01/issues-in-communicating-climate-risks.html

    http://achemistinlangley.blogspot.ca/2015/01/further-thoughts-on-type-i-and-type-ii.html

  6. rah says:

    Great post Doc but I while I understand your dejection it bothers me a little. I sincerely hope you will keep up the good fight for good science and the truth for all of us and for the principles which motivated you to become what you are in the first place. The tide will change.

  7. BBould says:

    Dr. Roy, take heart in the fact that a major paper in the UK did publish the absurdity of the warming claims. Thanks for all you do.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2915061/Nasa-climate-scientists-said-2014-warmest-year-record-38-sure-right.html

    The Nasa climate scientists who claimed 2014 set a new record for global warmth last night admitted they were only 38 per cent sure this was true.

    In a press release on Friday, Nasa’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) claimed its analysis of world temperatures showed ‘2014 was the warmest year on record’.

    The claim made headlines around the world, but yesterday it emerged that GISS’s analysis – based on readings from more than 3,000 measuring stations worldwide – is subject to a margin of error. Nasa admits this means it is far from certain that 2014 set a record at all.

    Yet the Nasa press release failed to mention this, as well as the fact that the alleged ‘record’ amounted to an increase over 2010, the previous ‘warmest year’, of just two-hundredths of a degree – or 0.02C. The margin of error is said by scientists to be approximately 0.1C – several times as much…………………………..

    • I’m very surprised that Schmidt claimed he was only 38% sure he was right and not 38.3185% sure that he was right. What a joke that guy is.

      • Agree about Gavin Schmidt. On anther blog he admitted he did not know about the Schmidt number or what it was used for. His understanding of heat& mass transfer is zero but that is the case for most who call themselves “climate scientist”
        Maybe Dr Spencer should have studied chemical or mechanical engineering then he would have more answers from the data he is collecting. Not only do engineers learn about thermodynamics, heat & mass transfer but subjects such as fluid dynamics, reaction kinetics, process control etc. which all are necessary to even start an assessment of atmospheric changes.

  8. jimc says:

    “Nasa climate scientists: We said 2014 was the warmest year on record… but we’re only 38% sure we were right “

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2915061/Nasa-climate-scientists-said-2014-warmest-year-record-38-sure-right.html

    • jimc says:

      There are those to whom truth is something to be served. And then there are those (especially on the left) to whom truth must serve their ideology regardless. I see that in the perversion of journalism, politics, law, education, academia, entertainment, family, science, and just about ever once trusted institution the left can get its hands on.

  9. Bill Norton says:

    Well said.

  10. There is nothing much more to say then what you said. It is so true.

    I just hope that the temperature trend will turn down(starting this year which I think may occurr) not only because I want to be correct but I want to see what the political spin would be if those circumstances should arise.

    • Tracy M. Bovee says:

      Salvatore, they would probably swing right back to global cooling alarmism, just as in the ’70s.

  11. John F. Hultquist says:

    Thanks Roy.
    I always like to read what W. M. Briggs has to say about statistics claims. Most recently:
    http://wmbriggs.com/blog/?p=5905
    “More On The 1 in 1.6 Million Heat Wave Chance”

  12. Thanks for yet another very good article Dr. Spencer.

  13. Planetary-Physics says:

    OPEN LETTER TO ANTHONY WATTS at WATTSUPWITHTHAT

    Our group of physicists will refute all blog posts that continue to promote the false IPCC radiative forcing conjecture.

    Anthony

    See what our growing group of physicists (who all agree with me) does to the reputation of your blog site that continues to promulgate the false IPCC physics that IR-active gases (water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane etc) cause surface warming. Clearly water vapor reduces the temperature gradient. How could it possibly raise the surface end of the temperature profile at the same time, thus leading to enormous imbalance in net radiative flux at TOA? You have no understanding of the relevant physics Anthony, and you certainly are in no position to judge my physics in which I have qualifications and decades of experience, like John Turner who reviewed my book as below …

    Review of Amazon book: “Why It’s Not Carbon Dioxide After All”

    “Doug Cotton shows how simple thermodynamic physics implies that the gravitational field of a planet will establish a thermal gradient in its atmosphere. The thermal gradient, a basic property of a planet, can be used to determine the temperatures of its atmosphere, surface and sub-surface regions. The interesting concept of “heat creep” applied to diagrams of the thermal gradient is used to explain the effect of solar radiation on the temperature of a planet. The thermal gradient shows that the observed temperatures of the Earth are determined by natural processes and not by back radiation warming from greenhouse gases. Evidence is presented to show that greenhouse gases cool the Earth and do not warm it.”

    John Turner B.Sc.;Dip.Ed.;M.Ed.(Hons);Grad.Dip.Ed.Studies (retired physics educator)

    Others in our group will be posting plenty until you get it right about the gravitationally-induced temperature gradient and the convective heat transfers which (in accord with the Second Law) are establishing thermodynamic equilibrium with maximum entropy.

    Doug Cotton

  14. Frank Lee says:

    “The New York Times” quoted a scientist at the Potsdam Institute in Germany, Stefan Rahmstorf, who stated, “The fact that the warmest years on record are 2014, 2010, and 2005 clearly indicates that global warming has not ‘stopped in 1998,’ as some like to falsely claim.” I’d like to point out that I, a literary scholar, apparently understand statistics better than some scientists. How can Rahmstorf believe that three annual data points out of a total of sixteen annual data points (1999 through 2014) reliably indicate an upward trend? What if, combined with the missing thirteen data points, the average over the past sixteen years is actually flat or downward? Just how badly educated are scientists today that they not only believe their flawed arguments are sound, but they also expect other educated persons to accept their flawed arguments, no questions asked?

  15. DC says:

    OPEN LETTER TO ANTHONY WATTS at WATTSUPWITHTHAT

    Our group of physicists will refute all blog posts that continue to promote the false IPCC radiative forcing conjecture.

    Anthony

    See what our growing group of physicists (who all agree with me) does to the reputation of your blog site that continues to promulgate the false IPCC physics that IR-active gases (water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane etc) cause surface warming. Clearly water vapor reduces the temperature gradient. How could it possibly raise the surface end of the temperature profile at the same time, thus leading to enormous imbalance in net radiative flux at TOA? You have no understanding of the relevant physics Anthony, and you certainly are in no position to judge my physics in which I have qualifications and decades of experience, like John Turner who reviewed my book as below …

    Review of Amazon book: “Why It’s Not Carbon Dioxide After All”

    “Doug Cotton shows how simple thermodynamic physics implies that the gravitational field of a planet will establish a thermal gradient in its atmosphere. The thermal gradient, a basic property of a planet, can be used to determine the temperatures of its atmosphere, surface and sub-surface regions. The interesting concept of “heat creep” applied to diagrams of the thermal gradient is used to explain the effect of solar radiation on the temperature of a planet. The thermal gradient shows that the observed temperatures of the Earth are determined by natural processes and not by back radiation warming from greenhouse gases. Evidence is presented to show that greenhouse gases cool the Earth and do not warm it.”

    John Turner B.Sc.;Dip.Ed.;M.Ed.(Hons);Grad.Dip.Ed.Studies (retired physics educator)

    Others in our group will be posting plenty until you get it right about the gravitationally-induced temperature gradient and the convective heat transfers which (in accord with the Second Law) are establishing thermodynamic equilibrium with maximum entropy.

    Doug Cotton

    • Tracy M. Bovee says:

      Mr. Cotton: Make sure you follow through on that promise. Make sure, also, that your target is the correct one.

      (Lastly … double post.)

  16. KevinK says:

    Dr. Spencer, with respect, it’s never too late to make a career change, just saying. There’s always engineering work to be done by smart folks like yourself.

    One nice thing about being an engineer, you find out quickly, sometimes in a few milliseconds after you “flip the switch”, if your design acts like the model “projections”. Come to think of it, I’ve had a few circuit designs that “projected” a few odd bits of smoking leftovers quite a distance after I “flipped the switch”… Ha ha ha.

    I know some folks working on the “RBI”, I could put in a word on your behalf.

    Very nice post, thank you.

    Cheers, KevinK.

    • Roy Spencer says:

      wow, very tempting offer, Kevin. I’ve built a couple Healthkits years ago, and routinely shock myself when I do home wiring (too lazy to turn the breakers off). Also rebuilt a couple car engines. Is that enuf qualifications? 😉

  17. KevinK says:

    Dr. Spencer, not to worry, we have protocols in place to keep scientists (and managers) away from anything dangerous (wink wink).

    You should not be too lazy to turn off those circuit breakers, there are lots of deceased electricians that tried to “save” a few minutes by not turning the breaker off…. I have “models” that “project” a simple 110 volt AC circuit can kill you DEAD, and statistics to prove it.

    There is a section of engineering known as “systems engineering”, I was a systems engineer for a while, You would be a very successful systems engineer, I can tell from how you think about and describe complex problems.

    Thanks for your efforts, KevinK

    • Lewis says:

      A suggestion on turning off the circuit breakers – Check to be sure it was the correct one. I’m lucky – turned off the 220 listed as the correct breaker – lucky I’m here.

  18. Sammy Port says:

    “In what universe do the climate models built to guide energy policy are not even adjusted to reflect reality, when they over-forecast past warming by a factor of 2 or 3?”

    In a universe where informed, honest scientists are afraid to label those who: cherry-pick, manufacture and hide data and processes, who subvert peer-review and FOIA processes, who re-homogenize historical data (destroy) to reinforce their position (funding) and who destroy the careers of those who dissent, as FRAUD!

    How is Jones, Mann, Hansen, etc. still receiving funding as tens of thousand of pensioners perish annually from their scam…

  19. John Parsons says:

    Dr. Spencer, has your government funding away?

  20. John Parsons says:

    Edit: “gone away?”

  21. Fonzarelli says:

    “…I went into science with the misguided belief that science provides answers. Too often it doesn’t. Some physical problems are simply too difficult…”

    And THAT is the crux of the biscuit… So few arguments within AGW are definitive either way. And how are we to have any confidence in the more complex aspects of AGW when they can’t even get the basics right? (like taking temperature) Many aspects of AGW “are simply too difficult”. This allows for the highjacking of the debate by spin-mastering a subjective version of the truth. No one really knows just how far off from reality AGW really is…

  22. Gordon Robertson says:

    Roy…sorry, but we can’t allow you to be an honorary engineer till you bone up on your understanding of thermodynamics, especially the 2nd law.

    Engineers don’t have any problem with the FACT that heat can only be transferred from a warmer body to a cooler body under normal means. Normal means refers to the absence of the external power required to reverse the process using doodads like compressors and electric motors.

    As long as you persist in offering thought experiments to suggest heat can be transferred from cold bodies to hot bodies, you’ll never be an engineer. Thought experiments are frowned up in engineering.

    I know, because when I made mistakes in exams and tried to wheedle my way out of them using thought experiments, the prof shook his head. During an astronomy elective exam, after a night of far too many beer, I asked the attending prof how many kilometres there were in a parsec. That’s equivalent to asking how many inches there are in a degree. He smiled knowingly, shook his head, and said nothing.

    Other than that, you’re a cool dude for standing up to the entire world with regard to the propaganda behind anthropogenic warming. That attitude might get you accepted since skepticism and being persnickety are traits of a good engineer.

    For example, from one of the engineering songs:

    “Godiva was a lady who through Coventry did ride,
    To show the local villagers her lovely bare white hide,
    The most observant fellow there an engineer of course,
    Was the only one who noticed that Godiva rode a horse”.

    The rest of the crowd were obviously indulging in thought experiments but the engineer focused on the issue at hand.

    The other verses are unsuitable to print. 🙂

    • Joel Shore says:

      “but we can’t allow you to be an honorary engineer till you bone up on your understanding of thermodynamics, especially the 2nd law.”

      And, we physicists will continue to cringe when a few of you engineers persist in believing you are experts on the Second Law because you took one undergraduate physics course that we teach. (Fortunately, you do not represent most engineers, as most engineers do not misinterpret the Second Law as you do.)

      • TheBigYinJames says:

        Just think how surprised Gordon will be when he finds out that a photon leaving a radiating surface has absolutely no idea the temperature of the surface it may potentially hit, and even if it did, it would have no way to change its mind and stay where it was.

        • Gordon Robertson says:

          @BigYin…does that make you’re Scottish. 🙂

          “Just think how surprised Gordon will be when he finds out that a photon leaving a radiating surface has absolutely no idea the temperature of the surface it may potentially hit”

          A photon is an imaginary construct created to particalize EM. Einstein claimed late in his life that no one knew if EM took the form of a wave or a particle.

          You can tell it’s imaginary because it is DEFINED as having momentum but no mass. The lack of mass is crucial to it being a part of EM but as Bohren claimed, momentum is a phenomenon of nature and does not have to be restricted to our definition of mv.

          How these theorized particles move about in the atmosphere is not known and it is apparently highly complex. Speaking of a photon leaving the surface and finding it’s way to a GHG molecule is a highly complex process which Gerlich and Tscheuschner, the latter being an expert in the mathematics related to thermodynamics, claimed would require complex Feynman diagrams to represent.

          It’s not as simple as talking about photons knowing anything. No one has ever proved that GHGs are warmed by surface radiation outside of a few studies done in a lab using much higher densities of CO2.

      • Gordon Robertson says:

        @Joel Shore “we physicists will continue to cringe when a few of you engineers persist in believing you are experts on the Second Law because you took one undergraduate physics course that we teach”.

        Joel…when I did my studies, my brain was in a perpetual fog, so I would not pretend to base my understanding of the 2nd law on anything I learned studying engineering. In fact, I do not pretend to know anything about it at all.

        I have, however, read the original works of Clausius and he does not cloud the issue of the 2nd law by framing it in terms of entropy. In fact, in his work, he lays out how he coined the term and how he developed the idea, and that he considered entropy to be a minor matter at the time.

        If you read his work, he states several times that heat cannot be transferred from a colder body to a warmer body by normal means. He elaborates on what that means, that in order to transfer heat from a cold body to warmer body, external energy must be supplied.

        I realize in this day of quantum theory that many physicists get lost in the math and begin making absurd claims about physics. David Bohm once said that an equation with no physical reality to back it is garbage. Feynman and Einstein stated that in a different ways.

        All I am claiming is that modern climate scientists need to put away the equations, stand back, and look at the reality. Roy stated that in this article, that far too much is being made of a few tenths of a degree warming.

        Better still, they should dig out the original works of the scientists who established much of modern physics and try to understand physics from their writings.

        Unfortunately, in modern universities, we are taught using equations and definitions based on math. Very seldom are we encouraged to think what the equations mean physically.

        Egregious errors have been made in presumptions about the effect of anthropogenic CO2 in our atmosphere. I think the presumption that measuring incoming and outgoing IR and claiming it represents heat transfer is based on a misunderstanding of basic physics.

        I can see how that happens when physics becomes based on math. Same thing for space-time curvature. Somehow the math got twisted to allow time to get on the left side of the equation. Time has no existence other than as a mental concept hence any curvature or dilation takes place in the minds of the observer.

        In case you doubt that, consider the origins of time, the periodicity of the Earth’s rotation. Before we could measure it we had to invent clocks, which are nothing more than machines that can be synchronized to a central time base, which we invented as well.

        We defined the second and the metre yet we speak of space-time curvature as if it is an independent phenomena.

        If we can fool ourselves so easily about something as fundamental as time it is little wonder that we can get caught up in grand illusions about climate disaster based on climate models programmed by mathematicians.

        • Joel Shore says:

          “If you read his work, he states several times that heat cannot be transferred from a colder body to a warmer body by normal means. ”

          Clausius is correct. However, what is incorrect is people such as you and Postma and the rest of that crowd misinterpreting what “heat” means. “Heat” refers to macroscopic net flow of energy…not the microscopic transfers, like an individual photon. In Clausius’s day, the microscopic world “didn’t even exist” (in the sense that they knew nothing about it), so how could he have been talking about it?

          The modern understanding of thermodynamics as arising from the underlying microscopics of statistical physics explains why the reversibility we see in the microscopic world leads to the irreversibility (e.g., heat flowing only from hot to cold) in the macroscopic world. It is not because of some bizarre arbitrary and capricious rules on the microscopic scale, as you guys seem to believe, but rather simply due to the statistics of large numbers of particles: Individual photons go from hot to cold and cold to hot with impunity, but the equations that explain this transfer guarantee that there will always be more energy going from a hotter object to a colder object than the reverse.

          • JohnKl says:

            Hi Joel Shore,

            You chide Gordon:

            “It is not because of some bizarre arbitrary and capricious rules on the microscopic scale, as you guys seem to believe, but rather simply due to the statistics of large numbers of particles: Individual photons go from hot to cold and cold to hot with impunity, but the equations that explain this transfer guarantee that there will always be more energy going from a hotter object to a colder object than the reverse.”

            The concept of a net energy flow between emitting objects existed prior to the fiction of statistically analyzing the numbers of imagined photon particles supposedly emitted between objects. Planck himself claimed radiative energy depended on frequency/wavelength not intensity, the number of imaginary massless particles being irrelevant since no empirical observation substantiates their existence.

            Have a great day!

          • JohnKl says:

            Hi Joel Shore,

            A point of clarification. My reference to Planck’s claim refers only to radiative frequency and energy not the existence or non existence of protons.

            Have a great day!

      • Joe Born says:

        I don’t share Gordon Robertson’s view, and I’m just a retired lawyer, but my experience is that the Second Law of Thermodynamics is so difficult that even physicists who teach it can misapply it sometimes.

        I wonder how many people really know what it means.

        • Gordon Robertson says:

          @Joe Born …”…my experience is that the Second Law of Thermodynamics is so difficult that even physicists who teach it can misapply it sometimes”.

          Joe…I don’t pretend to understand the 2nd law in depth. I think a lot of modern scientists get into trouble with it by emphasizing the entropy factor. I think entropy theory can be confusing but the premise behind the 2nd law is not that difficult.

          If you read the history behind it, Clausius disagreed with Carnot who claimed that the interchange of heat and work, and vice versa, was a lossless process. Carnot had it right, that an equivalence exists between heat and work, he was just off-base about the lossless factor.

          At the time, the 1st law ruled. It is about the conservation of energy but with a heat engine regarded as lossless the door was open for a perpetual motion machine. The 2nd law closed that door by introducing losses into heat systems.

          The AGW theory has two basic renditions. One of them, the blanket theory, which physicist/meteorologist Craig Bohren refers to as plain silly, does seem silly. To regard a pithy amount of atmospheric anthropogenic CO2 as a blanket is a stretch. It’s like trying to keep warm with a threadbare blanket. Besides that it makes sweeping allegations about how EM operates in the atmosphere.

          Water vapour accounts for 96% of GHGs, and the total density of GHGs in the atmosphere is on the order of 1% of atmospheric gases. I like the analogy of a real greenhouse built with 100 panes of glass. You’d need to remove 99 panes to get the equivalent of a 1% GHG atmosphere.

          The more believable AGW theory, and Bohren agrees, is the back-radiation model. Unfortunately alarmists have stretched the concept to the point of non-believability. Trenberth-Kiehle, in their radiation budget have claimed an equal amount of energy being back-radiated from GHGs (1% of atmosphere) as what the entire surface radiates.

          T-K did admit their work is based purely on theory with no data to back it, but how they could justify GHGs comprising 1% of atmospheric gases, back-radiating as much heat as the entire surface, is a bit mind boggling.

          One of the supporters of that theory, Stefan Rahmstorf, a physicist, claims that back-radiation from GHGs can be added to solar energy to raise the surface temperature beyond what it is heated by solar energy. That in particular describes a positive feedback that the 2nd law does not permit.

          It can’t. Positive feedback requires an essentially lossless environment plus a feedback that can add energy to the surface in such a manner as to raise surface temperature.

          Not all PF systems require a lossless environment. In electronics amplifiers there are losses but those amps work by supplying transistor output current from an external power source. That’s how a BJT transistor amp gets amplification, by controlling the current in the transistor output circuit, supplied by a power supply, by a small current signal in the input.

          If PF is used, as in an oscillator, there is plenty of power in the output stage to feed back to the input in phase. The in-phase signal adds at the input and the subsequent amplified signal is recirculated, becoming larger during each feedback cycle.

          There is no such mechanism in the atmosphere and there are abundant losses from the entire surface radiating to space. The 2nd law guarantees that by recognizing losses in the alleged feedback circuit. There is no amplifier supplied by a power supply as in electronics feedback.

          At best, the PF referred to in that version of the AGW theory is a not-so-negative negative feedback and a negative feedback cannot lead to Hansen’s tipping point.

          Scientists should know that but if you read descriptions of positive feedback on the Net, many people are confused as to what it is. Engineer Jeffrey Glassman has written a paper on it, pointing out how Gavin Schmidt of NASA GISS has applied an equation incorrectly when describing positive feedback.

          Schmidt is a highly recognized AGW advocate, and a mathematician, yet he did not understand how to apply positive feedback correctly. Many alarmists chide skeptics for alleging that so many scientists could be wrong, but apparently that is the case.

    • John West says:

      1 Parsec = 3.08567758 × 10^16 meters

      You’re misrepresenting the GHE. Certainly, a cooler body can’t “heat” a warmer body, however, a cooler body can slow the cooling of a warmer body. A jacket for example is cooler than you are yet it keeps you warmer than without it because it insulates you from the even cooler air thereby slowing the rate of cooling which is the energy transfer to the surroundings. The GHE works by reducing the NET radiant heat transfer from the surface to its surroundings. A cloudy winter night staying warmer than a clear winter night being one obvious example of the GHE in action. Real Engineers know how to account for this:

      http://www.asterism.org/tutorials/tut37%20Radiative%20Cooling.pdf

      • Gordon Robertson says:

        @John West “The GHE works by reducing the NET radiant heat transfer from the surface to its surroundings…”

        John…you are confusing infrared radiation with heat. There is no such thing as radiant heat, radiation is infrared energy which can transfer heat from a warmer body to a cooler body.

        Heat in a body is a reference to the energy state of the atoms/molecules that make up the body. The higher the level of their kinetic energy the hotter the body will be.

        There is also increased motion in atoms with increased KE and that can be translated to work. As you know, work and heat are equivalent, although work is normally referenced to the external application of heat.

        When IR is radiated from a body it is at the expense of atomic energy levels. That’s why the body cools, due to a decrease in the kinetic energy of its atoms. However, IR has no heat in the same way EM contains no colour. Colour is added by the eye when EM of various frequencies strike the retina.

        GHGs, of which 96% are water vapour, account for roughly 1% of atmospheric gases. Do the math, if you were wearing a jacket that covered 1% of your body, how much infrared energy would it slow down from your body?

        All CO2 accounts for 4/100ths of 1% of the atmosphere and ACO2, based on a density of 390 ppmv, accounts for about 1/1000nds of 1% of the atmosphere.

        If you had a greenhouse made of 100 panes of glass, you’d need to remove 99 panes to get the equivalent of GHGs in the atmosphere. ACO2 would barely account for a smaller sliver of glass in the corner of a pane frame.

        That’s why Bohren partly referred to the blanket theory as a metaphor at best, and at worst, plain silly. In another reply, someone referred to a photon not knowing about it’s target. A photon is a theorized unit of EM and we have not the slightest clue how EM interacts with gases in the atmosphere.

        The most sensible theory supporting AGW is the back-radiation theory, in which heat supplied by the surface to GHGs in the atmosphere is back-radiated to the surface, causing the surface to warm.

        That’s where Roy and Joel Shore need to revisit the 2nd law and the knowledge that HEAT cannot be transferred from cooler GHGs in the atmosphere to a warmer surface THAT WARMED THEM.

        If that were true, we’d have a perpetual motion machine. That’s why the 2nd law is contravened, and unlike what Rahmstorf claims, summing infrared energies between surface and atmosphere does not bypass the claims of the 2nd law, which is about heat, not IR.

        • John West says:

          “John…you are confusing infrared radiation with heat.”

          True, technically heat = energy transfer. But in my defense I took a class in Engineering School named ‘Heat Transfer’ which is literally energy transfer transfer sometimes its just pragmatic not to take everything so literally. For example, an IR lamp is commonly called a heat lamp.

          If you can see that GHG’s in the atmosphere radiate IR and thus understand that any IR radiated from the surface must have this subtracted from it to determine the NET IR emission then you should be able to understand how the GHE can slow the cooling of the surface and doesn’t violate the 2nd law. Oh, but there’s math, the bane of physics. If you can’t point out where the physics in the link I provided is wrong I’d be happy to consider it, however, remember this is the real world where these mathematical formulas have been used successfully for decades to predict (albeit roughly) cooling rates and such. How wrong can they be?

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            @John West “If you can see that GHG’s in the atmosphere radiate IR and thus understand that any IR radiated from the surface must have this subtracted from it to determine the NET IR emission then you should be able to understand how the GHE can slow the cooling of the surface and doesn’t violate the 2nd law”.

            John…you’re still missing the point. They are not measuring net IR because GHGs act as a blanket, they are doing it based on a model of one surface radiating against another.

            It would be one thing if they were independent radiators but they are not. The cooler radiator (the atmosphere) is claimed in AGW theory, and the greenhouse theory, to be warmed by the surface. Therefore one radiator is dependent on the other.

            Someone said (was it you) that an IR lamp is called a heat lamp. That is a misnomer. It radiates IR and the IR does not produce heat till it is absorbed by a body and raises the KE level of its atoms.

            That does not work both ways and that comes from Clausius. The IR emitting lamp will warm a cooler body but the cooler body also emits IR that will not warm the IR lamp.

            Clausius claimed circa 1850 that IR flow both ways but that heat is transferred in one direction only, under normal conditions (which exist in the atmosphere).

            Therefore measuring NET IR DOES NOT measure heat transfer.

            NET IR is based on the 1st law which is about conservation of energy. The 1st law will allow perpetual motion under certain conditions and that’s mainly why Clausius developed the 2nd law to allow for losses and to plug that loophole.

            He did it partly based on Carnot’s insinuation that a heat engine had no losses. That’s basically what is being claimed in the atmosphere, not only that, they are claiming a gain….a positive feedback.

            That’s where the 2nd law is contravened. To get +ve feedback in the atmosphere you’d need a separate heat source, like another Sun nearby.

            The AWG theory a la Rahmstorf is claiming a positive feedback by recycling heat. He believes that back-radiation can be added to solar energy to make the surface hotter.

            That is a total contravention of the 2nd law. You cannot transfer heat within a closed system from the surface to the atmosphere and have the same heat used as a source of IR and back-radiated in such a manner that it produces a positive feedback.

            The reasons are numerous. For one, as I pointed out in another reply, the total GHGs in the atmosphere amount to about 1% of the atmosphere. If the GHGs could return 1% of the energy radiated from the surface, 99% of it is still lost. How do you make up a 99% loss with a 1% return?

            However, they cannot even return 1% because some is radiated sideways and some upward.

            The realty is far more complex. AGW is about anthropogenic CO2 alone, which accounts for about 1/1000nds of 1% of the atmosphere based on a density of 390 ppmv (IPCC).

            The radiated IR from the surface is fairly broad spectrum whereas the radiated energy from CO2 is in a narrow band. Furthermore, the radiated surface energy is more intense because the surface is warmer.

            Any back-radiated energy has neither the bandwidth nor the intensity to warm the surface.

          • AlecM says:

            For equal temperatures, there can be no net mean surface IR emission in the self-absorbed GHG bands; the Enhanced GHE cannot exist.

            It’s because the net surface IR in any self-absorbed GHG band is the vector sum of the Partial Irradiances at the surface.

            There is net surface IR emission in the Atmospheric Window and non self-absorbed H2O bands. The former goes to Space, via clouds if present; the latter is absorbed over kilometres; no significant warming.

        • gbaikie says:

          –The most sensible theory supporting AGW is the back-radiation theory, in which heat supplied by the surface to GHGs in the atmosphere is back-radiated to the surface, causing the surface to warm.

          That’s where Roy and Joel Shore need to revisit the 2nd law and the knowledge that HEAT cannot be transferred from cooler GHGs in the atmosphere to a warmer surface THAT WARMED THEM.–

          If GHGs reflected IR it seems back-radiation theory would makes sense. But instead GHG’s re-radiate the IR.
          And as far as I know it re-radiates it in a random direction.

          So even if GHGs reflected IR it would be a poor mirror and since re-radiates instead far worse.
          Of course the way I understand reflection is it requires a surface and gases don’t have surfaces and aren’t reflective.

          So generally don’t see back radiation as doing anything- I don’t think it’s the best argument. Nor does seem the most dominate argument.

          What hear as argued is the GHG absorb the energy and transfer it to other gas- or radiant energy is somewhat converted into the kinetic energy of gas molecules.

          If you increase the kinetic energy of gas molecules at higher elevation, you can warm the Earth.
          Or this has nothing to do with cold warming something warmer.
          Now such an idea seems to me to argue against idea of Ideal gas theory.
          Anyways if GHG can absorb IR and transfer into kinetic energy obviously this would extinction event for the photon. Though I suppose another way is that absorption and re-radiation adds and subtracts the momentum of a gas molecule. Or similar to sunlight bouncing of a solar sail and adding momentum to solar sail.

          Anyhow what argued is IR heats the Atmospheric gases.
          And I generally argue that only way to heat gases is by increasing their kinetic energy [increase the velocity] of the gas.
          And I haven’t had anyone explain to me how that suppose to work [though I given how I could begin to imagine it might
          do, though lots of problems with it- starting with the lack of observation of this happening- and appears to violate ideal gas laws}.
          Or my premise is gases are only heated by other gases or heated solids/liquids and gas radiating energy does not lower there kinetic energy. Or only solid/liquid are warmed
          by radiant energy.

    • Ball4 says:

      Gordon 1:26pm: “..the FACT that heat can only be transferred from a warmer body to a cooler body..”

      Top post doesn’t use the heat term. You remain naive & confused about lessons learned from Planck’s radiative energy transfer testing by mistakenly invoking the term heat. Consult Bohren 1998 sec. 1.8 p. 24 to learn how to apply the heat term correctly. Bohren points out only energy can transfer using correct terminology from observing physical tests. Dr. Planck was careful to correctly use heat terminology in his original paper with no confusion.

      You also misquote Dr. Craig Bohren in 2006 actually writing: “…there is no such thing as “heat radiation”….the notion that the atmosphere traps radiation is at best a bad metaphor, at worst downright silly….assertions about the “atmosphere acting like a blanket” are absurd” on pages 34 and 37. Absurd in that a blanket and jacket suppress convection, the atmosphere does not.

      Bohren again: “Yves Le Grand calls radiant heat a “meaningless term”, and adds, “to say that the sun, for instance, radiates heat is naïve”.” The sun radiates energy.

    • Menicholas says:

      Not exactly.
      A parsec is a unit of length.
      It is equal to 3.26 light-years, or about 31 trillion kilometers.
      One parsec is the distance at which one astronomical unit subtends an angle of one arcsecond.
      Sorry.

  23. Donb says:

    Dr Spencer,
    Your comments as to whether humans would feel a warming of one or a few degrees emphasize that it is not small temperature changes per se that influence humans, but changes in weather and climate such temperature changes may cause. But how well are these studied and understood?

    Unfortunately, the political influence and confirmation bias you describe are not limited to climate change. For example they occur on a more subtle level in NASA’s Mars Exploration Program. In an effort to keep public interest and funding active in exploring Mars, NASA recognized years ago that the possible existence of present or past life there was key, and whether the Martian surface once had abundant water to support such life was a requirement. Unlike the situation with its other planetary exploration missions, NASA makes this desired Mars exploration goal very clear. So Mars researchers have a strong incentive to find evidence of Martian water. How many times have you read that once more evidence of water has been found on Mars?

  24. Doug says:

    It is you who has no evidence that the greenhouse gas water vapor warms by most of those 33 degrees Roy. I have evidence that it cools – which I suggest puts a spanner in the IPCC works.

    • John West says:

      Of course GHG’s cool, they’re radiantly active. That’s why increasing the GHG concentration in the stratosphere cools the stratosphere. It’s a matter of equipartition of energy that determines the local effect. Let’s abandon temperature for the time being since it’s an incomplete measure of internal energy and just consider energy and internal energy for a minute. Energy leaves the sun and arrives to the stratosphere where some of it gets absorbed into molecules (thus causing the “backwards” lapse rate of the stratosphere relative to the troposphere), some makes it to the surface where it is absorbed or reflected. The absorbed energy into the surface increases the internal energy of the surface which radiates energy to its surroundings. A GHG absorbing such energy from the surface is increased in internal energy (note that this does not increase the temperature of the GHG since temperature of a gas is a function of translational motion ONLY, and the absorbed IR went into vibrational motion.). This energy in turn could be transmitted to other molecules through collisions thus warming the surrounding parcel of air. The GHG molecule also could convert translational motion from the surrounding molecules into its vibrational motion and then to IR thus cooling the surrounding parcel of air. Basically, energy is always equalizing into all available forms within a parcel of gas: translation (temperature), vibration, radiation. Since the troposphere is being warmed from the bottom (the surface) via convection and radiation the conditions are generally favorable for GHG’s to act more or less neutrally as far as their local parcel of air temperature is concerned. However, their radiation acts to reduce the NET radiation from the surface to the atmosphere. This of course does not slow down convection which in many cases does indeed completely dominate energy transfer from the surface to the atmosphere but that doesn’t mean that radiant heat loss is not significant or that the GHE doesn’t significantly affect it.

      Generally, the skeptics position is that going from an average backradiation of say 333 W/m^2 to say 337 W/m^2 is not worth panicking over (indeed hardly worth an eyebrow raise).

      • JohnKl says:

        Hi John West,

        You stated:

        “However, their radiation acts to reduce the NET radiation from the surface to the atmosphere.”

        It only reduces the net amount of radiation that flows unimpeded by atmospheric gas molecules from the surface to the atmosphere. It doesn’t reduce the total amount of radiation emitted to space.

        Have a great day!

  25. Layne says:

    Dr. Spencer,

    Nice post. But there is only ONE political ideology demanding that the answers defy reality. The answer isn’t swinging right to left, but right to wrong.

  26. RW says:

    Roy,

    I haven’t been your biggest fan this past year or so, but this is one heck of good rant! Well said.

  27. Bevan Dockery says:

    Thank you Dr Spencer for that blunt update. It supports my recent decision that it is time to “call a spade, a spade” and wherever possible state that the climate warmists are simply liars.

    This is the result of my continuing efforts to analyse files from the World Data Centre for Greenhouse Gases that provide historic records of CO2 concentration from hundreds of stations around the globe. I found it odd that there are plenty of records of CO2 concentration and only a few called MET. The later rarely provide temperature data with MET apparently referring to Wind Speed and Direction. This was most unexpected when the main focus of the recording effort should have been to elucidate the relationship between CO2 concentration and temperature.

    However a comparison of the CO2 data from the Mauna Loa Observatory with your satellite lower tropospheric temperatures ( thank you ) clarified the situation. When the IPCC published their First Assessment Report (FAR) they already had 36 years of data from Mauna Loa and 11 years of the UAH satellite data. Statistical comparison between the two data sets for that period shows that the correlation between monthly changes in each of the variables, temperature and CO2 concentration, has a coefficient of 0.03 with a probability of 50% that the value is zero. Thus the IPCC should have known that their claim of increasing CO2 concentration causing an increase in temperature was false.

    Further, the 11 years of data shows that the correlation between the annual increment in CO2 and the average Tropics Land satellite temperature for each period is 0.60 with negligible probability that the correlation is zero. Thus the IPCC could have known at the time of release of the FAR that the rate of increase in CO2 concentration is governed by the ambient temperature so it is the global warming since the last ice age that has generated the increase in CO2 concentration.

    Clearly there is no science involved in the IPCC publications. They are simply political instruments published by LIARS, so do not feel bad about being a climate scientist with integrity.

  28. David Johnson says:

    Excellent article Dr Spencer

  29. Bevan Dockery says:

    Thank you Dr Spencer for that blunt update. It supports my recent decision that it is time to “call a spade, a spade” and wherever possible state that the climate warmists are simply liars.

    This is the result of my continuing efforts to analyse files from the World Data Centre for Greenhouse Gases that provide historic records of CO2 concentration from hundreds of stations around the globe. I found it odd that there are plenty of records of CO2 concentration and only a few called MET. The later rarely provide temperature data with MET apparently referring to Wind Speed and Direction. This was most unexpected when the main focus of the recording effort should have been to elucidate the relationship between CO2 concentration and temperature.

    However a comparison of the CO2 data from the Mauna Loa Observatory with your satellite lower tropospheric temperatures ( thank you ) clarified the situation. When the IPCC published their First Assessment Report (FAR) they already had 36 years of data from Mauna Loa and 11 years of the UAH satellite data. Statistical comparison between the two data sets for that period shows that the correlation between monthly changes in each of the variables, temperature and CO2 concentration, has a coefficient of 0.03 with a probability of 50% that the value is zero. Thus the IPCC should have known that their claim of increasing CO2 concentration causing an increase in temperature was false.

    Further, the 11 years of data shows that the correlation between the annual increment in CO2 and the Tropics Land satellite temperature is 0.60 with negligible probability that the correlation is zero. Thus the IPCC could have known at the time of release of the FAR that the rate of increase in CO2 concentration is governed by the ambient temperature so it is the global warming since the last ice age that has generated the increase in CO2 concentration.

    Clearly there is no science involved in the IPCC publications. They are simply political instruments published by LIARS, so do not feel bad about being a climate scientist with integrity.

  30. Bevan Dockery says:

    Thank you Dr Spencer for that blunt update. It supports my recent decision that it is time to “call a spade, a spade” and wherever possible state that the climate warmists do not tell the truth.

    This is the result of my continuing effort to analyse files from the World Data Centre for Greenhouse Gases that provide historic records of CO2 concentration from hundreds of stations around the globe. I found it odd that there are plenty of records of CO2 concentration and only a few called MET. The later rarely provide temperature data with MET apparently referring to Wind Speed and Direction. This was most unexpected when the main focus of the recording effort should have been to elucidate the relationship between CO2 concentration and temperature.

    However a comparison of the CO2 data from the Mauna Loa Observatory with your satellite lower tropospheric temperatures ( thank you ) clarified the situation. When the IPCC published their First Assessment Report (FAR) they already had 36 years of data from Mauna Loa and 11 years of the UAH satellite data. Statistical comparison between the two data sets for that period shows that the correlation between monthly changes in each of the variables, temperature and CO2 concentration, has a coefficient of 0.03 with a probability of 50% that the value is zero. Thus the IPCC should have known that their claim of increasing CO2 concentration causing an increase in temperature was false.

    Further, the 11 years of data shows that the correlation between the annual increment in CO2 and the average annual Tropics Land satellite temperature is 0.60 with negligible probability that the correlation is zero. Thus the IPCC could have known at the time of release of the FAR that the rate of increase in CO2 concentration is governed by the ambient temperature so it is the global warming since the last ice age that has generated the increase in CO2 concentration.

    Clearly there is no science involved in the IPCC publications. They are simply political instruments published to mislead, so do not feel bad about being a climate scientist with integrity.

  31. P l a n e t    P h y s says:

    All the evidence you need Roy ..

    http://climate-change-theory.com/evidence.html

  32. AlecM says:

    Like all professional scientists and engineers (I’m an engineer) I did a sniff test and an energy balance when looking at IPCC ‘Science’.

    Sniff test: if the Earth’s surface were to heat local (~20 m) air at the claimed mean 157.5 W/m^2, its temperature must be ~ 0 deg C – averaged OVER THE WHOLE PLANET; colder than at any time in the past 444 million years.

    It’s kept near surface temperature by the convection that maintains ‘lapse rate’. Houghton showed why in 1977. He then apparently gave up Science to co-found the IPCC. In 2005, Hansen bemoaned the fact they had no measurements of local air temperature, perhaps realising vulnerability to clear thinking opposition which would in time say ‘Show us the Beef’. There is no Beef; there is no Enhanced GHE

    Conclusion: Climate Alchemy Stinks; unfit for UN consumption.

    Energy Balance: Hansen et al in 1981 claimed an imaginary, 360 degree, -18 deg C IR emission zone in the upper atmosphere. This was, in effect, a ‘bait and switch’, exchanging real 238.5 W/m^2 with imaginary 333 W/m^2 ‘back radiation’; 40% increase, a Perpetual Motion Machine of the 2nd Kind. Later, they did another numerical trick in hind-casting, assuming ~35% more low level cloud albedo than reality, to purport extra evaporation from oceans. His claims to Congress in 1988 were based on ‘modelling artefacts’.

    Conclusion: the modelling has been fraudulent for 34 years.

    • geran says:

      That’s why stuff like this is so disappointing:

      “I will admit the science has always supported the view that slowly increasing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere from burning of fossil fuels should cause some warming”

      It’s been over 15 years now, with increasing CO2 levels, but statistically flat global temps. When will “the science” quit supporting the nonsense that “CO2 produces warming”?

      • AlecM says:

        The reason why CO2 doesn’t even give its intrinsic Climate Sensitivity is because the water cycle automatically keeps net surface IR warming of the atmosphere at a mean zero.

        The same applies to any well mixed GHG; it’s the way the atmosphere works, minimising radiation entropy production rate for our climate, but not past climates without thermohaline circulation.

  33. chris says:

    The most disturbing and perhaps revealing consequence is that the promoters of this scheme like to paint themselves as the only people who truly care about the mother earth, but the reality is that all they have really done is to harm the poorest people of the world.

  34. Martin A says:

    I remember some hookers were being interviewed on TV about how they came to be working in their profession.

    The answers were interesting and not what you might generally expect. One said that she had wanted to change from her previous work to a job that did not involve dishonesty,

  35. Bevan Dockery says:

    Apologies Dr Spencer, when my posting did not appear I tried two more times but still got nothing so shut down. Now 3 hours later I see that all entries are present. Apparently there was an unusually long delay between Western Australia and Alabama possibly due to school holidays at this end. I will wait much longer for a response in future. Best Regards,

    • Fonzarelli says:

      Na… I live in Louisiana and it happens to me all the time. Often it’ll go through and then it will disappear once i leave the page only to reappear later on. (key may be to look for it the first time before leaving the page; works sometimes for me…)

      While it is true that carbon growth tracks with temperature, the counter argument is that the rise is still anthropogenic. (temperature merely regulates the anthropogenic rise due to an inefficiency in the sinks as temps rise) It is noteworthy that carbon growth, even during an el niño, never exceeds the level of human emissions. However, the counter to this counter argument is that an inefficiency in the sinks should cause natural co2 to rise also, seeing how warmer temps do not cause a reduction in natural emissions. (the same inefficiency in the sinks should cause a rise due to natural sources as well) i’ve found that discussions on this particular topic are exceedingly rare. Not enough people really know that co2 tracks with temperature. (and many also find that ice cores are so convincing at proving an anthropogenic rise that they go no further) Cross examination of the carbon data may be the key to unraveling agw theory…

      • JohnKl says:

        Hi Fonzarelli,

        You stated:

        “While it is true that carbon growth tracks with temperature, the counter argument is that the rise is still anthropogenic. (temperature merely regulates the anthropogenic rise due to an inefficiency in the sinks as temps rise) It is noteworthy that carbon growth, even during an el niño, never exceeds the level of human emissions.”

        You should know that not only does CO2 growth track temperature but atmospheric water (H2O) vapor does as well. Please investigate toward the bottom page of the following link:

        http://www.remss.com/research/climate

        None of this should surprise anyone the Oceans, lakes and streams out-gas carbon dioxide, water vapor and likely other gasses when temperatures increase. Apparently, the outgassed compounds enhance cooling (as effective emitters should) because after spiking the temps and gas growth seemingly inevitably retreats again. If you read through the link the RSS statement admits tri-atomic gas molecules ( hilariously dubbed GHG’s) COOL THE STRATOSPHERE ( with the obvious likely exception of O3 (ozone) ) but then try their level best to explain why the same molecules must WARM THE LOWER TROPOSPHERE.

        To be a an effect CAGW propagandist one’s seemingly inherent cognitive dissonance must never be allowed to cloud a scary narrative.

        Thanks, and have a great day!

  36. Abbé says:

    Hi! Former research scientist at the CNRS (French National Research Council) I’m interested by the climate changes and I try to bring back to reason compatriots. Not easy ! I have been through your site and to the NOAA site. This later mentions that 2014 is the warmest year ever seen (and it is published to day in the french newspapers !) in disagreement with your own (?) ranking and the graph you report. The difference with previous years is so small that it is not significant but this later argument is difficult to accept for most people. Also, NOAA claims that 2014 was 0.69°C warmer than the 20 th century average. At max, from your ranking, 0.27 + 0.2 (max), ie 0.5 at most, .2°C lower ? Makes people very confuse : same data and different reports ! In France, August was cool but Sept, Oct, Nov were hot which led to a mean value higher (?) than usual. While Meteo France reports that the high temperature in Autum had nothing to do with climate changes, just a mere specific system, the same organization lies on the mean value as a proof of temperature increase along years. Difficult !
    Thnaks in advance for any comment
    Thanks for comments

    • Abbe says:

      Sorry, I wrote my name with an accent as “e”. My name should be Abbe

      • dave says:

        To Abbe of France, and referencing the map of vegetation above:

        I have written, before, how wonderfully the landscape of France has changed, during the sixty years that I have been visiting it. From hard-scrabble farms to seemingly limitless forests and meadows. Likewise, flying low over Southern England now, one can hardly see the houses for the profusion of greenery. CO2 is Viagra for plants!

        • JohnKl says:

          Hi Dave,

          Atmospheric plant food CO2 does wonders! However, from the Google maps it appears that while England has greened considerably it will be some time before they recover the forests lost to logging prior to industrialization. Thanks and…

          Have a great day!

  37. jm says:

    Roy you are upholding the true mission of science like Galileo and other heretics. Thanks for bravely speaking out in the name of truth. You work is awesome.

  38. jimc says:

    Engineers are rather common (and thus not that special).
    Honest, level headed climatologists are rather scarce (and hence rather valuable).

  39. Beta Blocker says:

    —————————————————-
    Gavin Schmidt: “With the continued heating of the atmosphere and the surface of the ocean, 1998 is now being surpassed every four or five years, with 2014 being the first time that has happened in a year featuring no real El Niño pattern.” Gavin A. Schmidt, head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in Manhattan, said the next time a strong El Niño occurs, it is likely to blow away all temperature records.
    —————————————————-

    Once again, with Gavin Schmidt’s latest remarks, we can accurately observe that the climate science community has moved the goal posts for assessing the validity of the climate models; that is to say, the trend of peak hottest years which occur every four or five years has — for all practical purposes — effectively replaced the central trend of global mean temperature as the basis for evaluating the reliability of the climate models.

    See this January 2015 update to a previous graphic posted earlier on Climate Etc. in the fall of 2014.

    http://i1301.photobucket.com/albums/ag108/Beta-Blocker/GCM/CMIP5-RCP-Hottest-Year-Trend-2015-Update_zps2d49b66c.png

  40. Jeff says:

    If rainforests are greening can we estimate the increased uptake of CO2 and if that process will result in lower atmospheric CO2?

  41. Ric Werme says:

    A curious juxtapostion:

    Political polls are reported with an uncertainty percentage based on sample size.

    NASA/GISS reports global temperature down to 0.01° C but can’t be bothered to report their uncertainty.

    This pattern of political polling displaying better science than GISS is massively disappointing. Kudos to David Rose for asking about about the uncertainty.

  42. Oscar jones says:

    Tell us if you have received money from the API or a Big Oil company?

    • Rich Horton says:

      There is this little button above called “above” where one could read (if they have the skill) the following:

      “Dr. Spencer’s research has been entirely supported by U.S. government agencies: NASA, NOAA, and DOE. He has never been asked by any oil company to perform any kind of service. Not even Exxon-Mobil.”

      Now, does this make you THINK at all?

      • Rich Horton says:

        There is this little button above called “about”

        Damn brain injury acting up again.

      • John Parsons says:

        But Dr. Spencer’s last paragraph above says that Government funding will “go away” if you don’t tow the IPCC line. So how is it that he seems to have escaped the fate he describes? JP

        • Fonzarelli says:

          He’s among the 3%…

          • dave says:

            “…he is among the 3%…”

            Actually, Dr Spencer counts himself among the 97%. He just thinks it is such a fuss for such a small thing (as the actress said to the Bishop.)

          • Fonzarelli says:

            Yes, while doctor spencer is among the 97% who “believe” in agw, he would be among the 3% who don’t believe their funding would go away…

  43. russ says:

    Your right the earth is greening. But this is both a blessing and a curse. More grass growing means less dust blowing. You know we call lots of grass “good ground cover.” The problem is that ocean plant life is dying in our worsening drought of dust that results from all that green grass. Ocean patures are 72% of this blue planet. The ocean ‘grass’ the plankton are dying out at incredible rates and along with the dying of ocean pastures the fish are disappearing. We can blame overfishing but it is a crisis only because the vast majority of ocean pasture carrying capacity, the number of fish that the ocean pastures can feed, has diminshed the fish to the point where we humans can really eat them into near extinction.

    But the story needed be doom and gloom nor one of ardent objection to anything about CO2 being a problem. I’ve shown that by taking a mere 100 tons of iron ore out to a large ocean pasture and its ‘grass/plankton’ have been revived and restored. In the bargain fish and all of ocean life have returned to the greatest abundance in all of history. The very next year Alaska fisherment caught not the bumper catch predicted of 52 million Pink salmon they caught 226 million salmon. The largest catch in all of history.

    As for CO2 that blooming ocean pasture converted 20 million tonnes of CO2 into ocean life where it was destined to become ocean acid death. The cost? Just $70,000 worth of rock dust! According to the state of Alaska, its fishing industry put an extra $400 million into the pockets of people in the salmon industry from those extra fish. This works out to a cost per ton to convert CO2 into ocean life at a quarter of one cent per tonne to make good use of our polluting CO2. A tax of one ten thousandth’s of one single penny on the hundreds of millions earned by the Alaska fishing industry each year would keep their ocean pastures at the highest levels of health and productity in all of history, veritable ocean gardens of Eden. Read more at http://www.russgeorge.net

    • JohnKl says:

      Hi Russ,

      Iron spiking the oceans maybe an old idea but it makes sense in many regions. Thanks for the link and …

      Have a great day!

  44. boris says:

    your observations today are being promoted as a facebook post from a conservative pundit. Which is fine but as you may or may not know facebook attaches 2 or 3 “you might also like” links when such a post ends up in your news feed. Well, one such link was to “Skeptical Science” which is, of course, an environmentalist site that has a long list of your statements and their pronouncements on what the science says to the contrary. The funniest of these pronouncements is the final one in response to a joke you made about joggers generating CO2 According to them the science says that “humans are returning to the atmosphere CO2 that was already there” when they exhale. Now my main concern here is for the education of our children. How anybody could be that ignorant of respiration after passing grade school life sciences? How could the note survive scrutiny in a website supposedly dedicated to “science”? A sad state of affairs. Please keep up the good work; your good humor and straight forward approach to making science accessible is deeply appreciated

  45. Planetary Physics says:

     
    SLAYING THE ‘SLAYERS’

    In the article “KIEHL AND TRENBERTH DEBUNK CLIMATE ALARM” (January 19) on the website for Principia Scientific International, Joseph Postma writes “And why do Kiehl and Trenberth, and climate alarm, get into such a mess? Of course, it’s because they don’t get the incoming energy from the Sun correct in the first place. Their “168 absorbed by surface” means that Sunlight could only ever make a surface it strikes to heat up to -40 degrees Celsius.”

    But the 168W/m^2 of mean solar energy absorbed by the surface is indeed roughly correct and also appears in NASA diagrams. The Solar Constant (about 1360W/m^2) is reduced by about half because of reflection and absorption by clouds and the rest of the atmosphere. Then we need to understand that the effective mean radiation is one-fourth of that half because the incident radiation is that which passes through a circle which is perpendicular to the radiation and which has the same radius as the Earth. It is the area of this circle which gives us the number of square meters used in the flux measurement that has units of watts per square meter. However, over the course of 24 hours the solar radiation is spread over the whole surface, and the area of the surface of a sphere is exactly four times the area of a circle with the same radius. Hence we divide the 1360 by about 8 and thus we see that the 168W/m^2 figure is about right.
     

  46. Mervyn says:

    Very well said!

    What is also alarming is that NASA has succumbed to the IPCC’s man-made global warming mantra and is prepared to tolerate the manipulation of the instrument surface temperature data, and to deceive the public with deceptive announcements about global temperature.

    One could be forgiven for thinking that Charles is doing the bidding of his master in the White House!

  47. KevinK says:

    Lewis, yes indeed, turn off the breaker and verify that no voltage is present at the work location. Breakers have been mislabled and even known to not open a circuit as designed to do. An inexpensive voltage “sniffer” should be in every amateur electricians tool kit, they are about $15 and beep in the presence of AC voltage fields, highly recommended by electricians widow’s everywhere.

  48. Eric de Brey says:

    I admire your work and persistence Dr Spencer and thank you for it. Please continue contributing to real climate science with your research, insights and undeniable climate facts.
    I hope we will soon see the day when delinquent pseudo-science is revealed for what it is and is made accountable for the billions of mis-allocated funds in mankind’s folly, attempting to curb Nature’s forces.
    Eric de Brey – Naval Architect.

  49. dave says:

    “…may have to wait and see…”

    You can’t hurry Nature. However, the latest figures from the Royal Observatory of Belgium make it pretty definite that Cycle 24 is declining.

  50. DJ.C o t t o n  says:

    JS: The Clausius statement is essentially a corollary of the Second Law because it only considers entropy changes due to kinetic energy. But gravitational potential energy also contributes to changes in entropy, so the “hot to cold” corollary only strictly applies in a horizontal plane, In a vertical plane the state of thermodynamic equilibrium has both a density gradient and a temperature gradient. This enables downward convective heat transfer that in physics also includes diffusion and of course eventually conduction into the surface. See this website and you will be able to explain all planetary physics – as our group now realizes.

  51. Not Chicken Little says:

    Already contributing to be able to trumpet 2015 as another “hottest year ever!!”, the Jonesboro, AR airport for the past week or so has been reporting temperatures anywhere from 12 to 20 degrees F higher than the surrounding areas, day and night. I have no doubt this data will not be corrected or taken out of the data set, because it helps push the warmist view. The whole “climate change” shtick is so corrupt it makes a mockery of what science is supposed to be about.

    • JohnKl says:

      You claimed:

      “The whole “climate change” shtick is so corrupt it makes a mockery of what science is supposed to be about.”

      True. The CAGW community fears and resents change of any kind. Global warming, global cooling what have you the change must be bad and must of course be created by humans. The magic chemical compound responsible for all this untimely change supposedly proves to be CO2. Atmospheric plant food will theoretically destroy the planet given enough time, continued emission and inattention by us consumer addicted homo-sapiens. The absurd physics behind their theory makes little difference to the propagandized. TO THE CLIMATE PARANOID CHANGE IS BAD.

      David Byrne’s song Heaven (Talking Heads) applies so well to the CAGW community. For them HEAVEN IS A PLACE WHERE NOTHING EVER HAPPENS (OR CHANGES FOR THAT MATTER).

      Have a great day!

      • jerry l krause says:

        Roy, you ask: “And what about those 97% of scientists who agree?” Einstein is said to have answered your question: “He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He had been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice.”

        Roy, you state: “I admit the science has always supported the view that slowly increasing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels should cause some warming, … .” Please cite the scientific evidence that supports the statement, “If the atmosphere did not absorb and emit longwave radiation, the surface of Earth would be up to 33o C (60 o F) cooler than it is today.”, which (or something very similar) is found in the most popular meteorology textbooks being used in the USA. This statement is the result of a simple radiation balance calculation which ignores the well observed fact that even thin clouds block the transmission of longwave radiation to space.

        Until you directly challenge the validity of this calculation, you remain a member of the 97%.

        Hi, JohhKl, Although not addressed to you, I thought it fit here as well as any place else.

        Have a good day, Jerry L Krause

        • JohnKl says:

          Hi Jerry L Krause,

          You asked Roy:

          “Please cite the scientific evidence that supports the statement, “If the atmosphere did not absorb and emit longwave radiation, the surface of Earth would be up to 33o C (60 o F) cooler than it is today.”, which (or something very similar) is found in the most popular meteorology textbooks being used in the USA.”

          Imo, the evidence doesn’t exist, merely a pile of assumptions.

          Have a great day!

        • MikeB says:

          An ideal thermally conductive blackbody orbiting the Sun at the same distance as the Earth would have a temperature of about 5.3 degrees C. This can be calculated quite straightforwardly from the Stefan-Boltzmann Law. [Blackbody means that it would absorb all radiation falling on it]

          However, the Earth is not a blackbody and it reflects about 30% of the incoming solar radiation. Consequently, it only absorbs 70%, and if you assume that the planet had no atmosphere at all then you can compute from the Stefan-Boltzmann equation that the Earth’s surface would be about -33 degrees C.
          This is where the -33 degC comes from. It is an easy calculation to make.

          There are some problems with this value. Most of the reflection comes from clouds. If there were no atmosphere there would be no clouds and so the reflectivity of the Earth (its albedo) would be less. On the other hand, if the world were colder, there would be more ice sheets and the reflectivity would be higher.

          What we can say is that the world would be cooler; in fact cooler than 5.3 degC, but how cold precisely we could not say.

          • MikeB says:

            I meant 33 degC cooler. i.e minus 18degC

          • jerry l krause says:

            Hi MikeB,

            I wrote: “This statement is the result of a simple radiation balance calculation which ignores the well observed fact that even thin clouds block the transmission of longwave radiation to space.” You have just ignored this observed fact. Why?

            Have a good day, Jerry L Krause

          • MikeB says:

            No, Jerry. I just didn’t realise I was wasting time responding to somebody who can’t read or understand what they read.

            Why not have a good day learning some basics?

          • jerry l krause says:

            Hi MikeB,

            Are you related to Doug Cotton?

            Have a good day, Jerry

        • JohnKl says:

          Hi Jerry L Krause and Mike B,

          Please review the statement quoted by Jerry:

          “If the atmosphere did not absorb and emit longwave radiation, the surface of Earth would be up to 33o C (60 o F) cooler than it is today.”

          Questions should immediately arise. If the atmosphere does not absorb/emit longwave (LW) radiation is that because no tri-atomic gas molecules exist in the atmosphere or because we wish to conduct a thought experiment in which tri-atomic gas molecules still fill the air but we simply assume they don’t emit/absorb LW? The ASSUMPTIONS one makes in attempting to answer an ill-defined question would make all the difference in the world.

          Have a great day!

          • JohnKl says:

            My statement should have read:

            “The ASSUMPTIONS one makes in attempting to speculate about different “what-if” atmospheric scenarios make all the difference in the world.

  52. pochas says:

    I think you could make an excellent living as a journalist, Roy. But then we would lose something far more valuable,

  53. Paddy Powerless says:

    Of course, the elephant in the room is the outlandish assumption that lies behind the whole argument: that there is any such thing as a global ‘norm’. The earth does what it does, and it always has – there is no norm, only our preference for a climate that will sustain our agricultural needs and is conducive to our preferred way of living.

  54. Blair says:

    Global warming claims 97% believership and demands the remaining 3% convert. Why? Because global warming, like all science, is a form of religion starting from unprovable assumptions sometimes thought to be facts when they explain observation. Most people have a poor understanding of Thermodynamic Laws. (0) Heat energy does exist though only its effects can be seen. Heat travels from high temperature to low temperature ignoring other laws like gravity. (1) Conservation of energy. (3) You don’t conserve energy (Entropy). Entropy applies only to closed systems which don’t exist in nature. Entropy is derived from the math, not from observation. None of these postulates can be proven.

    The biggest problem with global warming is accurately measuring the temperature. With the automation of weather observing, you can program 2015 to be the hottest or coldest year on record. And the record has been corrupted. So the talk has shifted from science to name-calling. In the future, real scientists won’t use the false data set of temperatures.

    • JohnKl says:

      Hi Blair,

      You asserted:

      “Entropy applies only to closed systems which don’t exist in nature.”

      Actually, the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics applies to closed systems. It states that in any closed system the amount of energy unavailable for useful work (entropy) must always increase. Entropy itself however can be observed frequently in open systems. Our sun looses more of it’s hydrogen supply everyday loosing potential energy in the process and tending toward a more probable state. Likewise many of the earth’s heavy metals (uranium, flourine, Thorium, Curium, etc.) decay over time tending toward simpler more probable atomic structures. The planets ecosystem tends toward disorder as well and it requires enormous human effort to simply maintain much of what still exists. All of this occurs in the presence of mass/energy inputs insufficient to restore them to their original state. Nor has assistance from outside our universe arrived yet to fully restore the universe to it’s original higher order. In that sense, the universe at this time appears closed to energy/mass inputs sufficient to restore/conserve the original order and the 2nd Law appears to function as you claim it doesn’t.

      Have a great day!

      • JohnKl says:

        My statement above in part should have read “Increasing Entropy itself can be observed frequently in open systems.”

  55. Blair says:

    Global warming claims 97% believership and demands the remaining 3% convert. Why? Because global warming, like all science, is a form of religion starting from unprovable assumptions sometimes thought to be facts when they explain observation. Most people have a poor understanding of the three Laws of Thermodynamic. (Zero) Heat energy does exist though only its effects can be seen. Heat travels from high temperature to low temperature ignoring other laws like gravity. (1) Conservation of energy. (2) You don’t conserve energy (Entropy). Entropy applies only to closed systems which don’t exist in nature. Entropy is derived from the math, not from observation. None of these postulates can be proven.

    The biggest problem with global warming is accurately measuring the temperature. With the automation of weather observing and satellites, you can program 2015 to be the hottest or coldest year on record. And the record has been corrupted. So the talk has shifted from science to name-calling. In the future, real scientists won’t use the false data set of temperatures.

  56. Blair says:

    Global warming claims 97% believer-ship and demands the remaining 3% convert. Why? Because global warming, like all science, is a form of religion starting from unprovable assumptions sometimes thought to be facts when they explain observation. Most people have a poor understanding of the three Laws of Thermodynamic. (Zero) Heat energy does exist though only its effects can be seen. Heat travels from high temperature to low temperature ignoring other laws like gravity. (1) Conservation of energy. (2) You don’t conserve energy (Entropy). Entropy applies only to closed systems which don’t exist in nature. Entropy is derived from the math, not from observation. None of these postulates can be proven.

    The biggest problem with global warming is accurately measuring the temperature. With the automation of weather observing and satellites, you can program 2015 to be the hottest or coldest year on record. And the record has been corrupted. So the talk has shifted from science to name-calling. In the future, real scientists won’t use the false data set of temperatures.

  57. JohnKl says:

    My statement above in part should have read “Increasing Entropy itself can be observed frequently in open systems.”

  58. David Appell says:

    Roy Spencer wrote:
    “In the three decades I’ve been in the climate research business, it’s been clear that politics have been driving the global warming movement.”

    Ironically, many people think your own views are driven by politics, and religion.

    • JohnKl says:

      David Appell told Roy:

      “Ironically, many people think your own views are driven by politics, and religion.”

      You already know the proposed the proposed solutions to supposed atmospheric carbo-loading (Kyoto Protocol, carbon taxes, etc.) will do little if anything to reduce the rate of carbon growth let alone absolute carbon levels and thus by your logic can have little if any effect on temperature. Atmospheric CO2 levels have apparently increased since first measured in the late 19th century. Assuming as you appear to that increased carbon growth derives anthropically, do you have a plan as to how we induce 7 billion people on this industrialized planet to reduce carbon output to levels not seen since their great-great grandparents roamed the earth, population fell at about 1.3 billion and only the U.S., Germany and Britain proved only partially industrialized?

      Since the only plans provided by the IPCC and sundry national governments is to re-distribute wealth and access to the world’s hydrocarbons (locking out many of the poor) without much visible benefit for the poor accept the crumbs handed them by the state or much benefit to the environment (increasing the costs of natural gas production and distribution wont help the Chinese poor heavily dependent on coal) what DRIVES YOUR VIEWS? Since you appear to express religious animus MANY MAY THINK ONLY POLITICS DRIVES YOU. Hopefully not.

      Have a great day!

      “War is the continuation of politics by other means.”
      Carl von Clausewitz

      • David Appell says:

        AGW is already a redistribution of wealth – from the world — now, poor and future — who must deal with and clean up the pollution of fossil fuel users, to the polluters and industries, who grab the profits while leaving society to pay for their product’s damages.

        How is that fair?

        • JohnKl says:

          Hi David,

          You stated:

          “AGW is already a redistribution of wealth”

          Agreed. If AGW proves true, who will pay the energy providers for the BENEFITS of a warmer planet?

          You go on:

          “who must deal with and clean up the pollution of fossil fuel users, to the polluters and industries, who grab the profits while leaving society to pay for their product’s damages.”

          Carbon virgins don’t exist! You’re not pretending to be one are you? Society profits from the use of those same hydrocarbons (funny you keep calling such compounds as methane a “fossil fuel” when it’s a VOLCANIC GAS!!!) why shouldn’t societal members pick up the much of the cost? Personally, I’m glad Elon Musk, Wright and others bring cleaner alternatives to the market, but efficiency to me means greater benefit given the cost or greater bang for the buck, not mindless, fear based self-denial in search of a rational purpose. Paranoid fear that an ice-age climate might warm doesn’t seem rational to me.

          Have a great day!

      • David Appell says:

        John: Let’s say we’re neighbors.

        We each generate trash every week.

        You pay a service to truck your trash away.

        I, looking to save money, dump my trash over the fence separating our two yards.

        Is this fair?

        If so, why?
        If not, why?

        • JohnKl says:

          Hi David,

          You ask:

          “I, looking to save money, dump my trash over the fence separating our two yards.

          Is this fair?”

          Honestly, it depends on what’s in the trash. If you have some interesting books and or literature in good condition that just didn’t make it to the garage sale, please let me know. To be fair, I understand your point. However, atmospheric plant food hasn’t harmed me yet and I find it to be a POSITIVE contribution. It should be noted the lack of mass famines in recent decades (North Korea being an obvious exception) compared to prior decades and centuries. Thanks for the contribution and…

          Have a great day!

    • “Ironically, many people think your own views are driven by politics, and religion.”

      If you don’t have evidence, smear people.

  59. David Appell says:

    Roy wrote:
    “In the three decades I’ve been in the climate research business, it’s been clear that politics have been driving the global warming movement.”

    Really?

    The 30-yr trend of GISTEMP is 0.17 C/decade.

    The 30-yr trend of your own data, UAH LT, is 0.16 C/decade.

    That’s a lot of warming. So where is the politics?

    • Gordon Robertson says:

      @David Appell…”The 30-yr trend of your own data, UAH LT, is 0.16 C/decade”.

      No it’s not, it about half that according to the UAH 30 year report. Even in that report it’s 0.14C/decade and that covers a transition from a -ve anomaly region to a positive anomaly region. The first 17 years of the UAH record was mainly in a -ve anomaly region and did not push through into a +ve anomaly region till the late 1997 El Nino.

      It was explained in the UAH 30 year report that much of the cooling from the first 17 years was due to volcanic aerosols. That’s where much of the 0.14C/decade came in, a recovery from cooling. Since the trend from 1998 has been flat, that means just about all the UAH trend has come from a recovery from cooling.

      In the 30 year report, it is stated that removing the aerosol cooling leaves a trend of 0.009C/decade. That’s about right because 3.3 decades time 0.009C gives nearly 0.3C which is about where the flat trend since 1998 is situated. All of that came in one spurt circa 2001, however, and it’s likely related to the 1998 El Nino. It’s impossible for it to be caused by anthropogenic warming.

    • That’s got to be the most stupid comment I’ve ever read from Appell and that’s saying a lot.

  60. David Appell says:

    Roy wrote:
    “Of course, I’ve addressed the “hottest year” claim before it ever came out, both here on October 21, and here on Dec. 4.”

    But people don’t actually live in the lower troposphere, do they?

    • Aaron S says:

      Dave, If u look back at the literature the question is what were the IPCC models attempting to model? The AGW believers loved the satellite data prior to the reversal of the PDO and the great hiatus. Read up on 1997 to 2001 literature… back when the models were aligned with temp. You are one of greatest people of faith i have ever encountered bc any data set for temp u look at the models are failing and need redone. 2014 is indistinguishable from 05 or 10 and slightly lower than 98 but lets assume we have had warming as in the Hansen cooked books nasa data. The models base case predicted persistent warming. They are more wrong now then in 98 (spot on) 05, or 10 today bc the residual from predicted minus measurements (pick a data set) grows every year. The predictions for future climate are based on the models… by faith alone can u still believe in them. So its ironic to call roy faith based… maybe u missed the idea that you cant judge a speck in someones eye when u have a plank in yours bc roys faith doesnt seem to greatly impact his science… people like you it does.

    • JohnKl says:

      Hi David,

      You asked:

      “But people don’t actually live in the lower troposphere, do they?”

      The troposphere is the lowest layer of Earth’s atmosphere and site of all weather on Earth. Since The troposphere is bounded on the top by a layer of air called the tropopause, which separates the troposphere from the stratosphere, and on bottom by the surface of the Earth, where do you think people should live?

      Do you work and/or spend a great deal of time on nuclear sub-marines below the polar ice-cap? Or make high-altitude balloon sky dives like Felix Baumgartner? Just curious.

      Have a great day!

    • Had the lower troposphere warmed as predicted by models slimy characters like Appell would be screaming we are all going to die because that was what climate models predicted. Because the prediction failed, he is now completely uninterested in this test of the theory.

  61. David Appell says:

    Roy wrote:
    “Of course, I’ve addressed the “hottest year” claim before it ever came out, both here on October 21, and here on Dec. 4.”

    And why is the temperature of the lower troposphere a better metric for measuring manmade global warming than ocean heat content, which is increasing year after year?

    http://www.nodc.noaa.gov/OC5/3M_HEAT_CONTENT/

    • JohnKl says:

      Good question. However, does the increase in ocean heat content reflect sub-surface,surface mutations or both? Just asking.

      Have a great day!

    • Because climate models (the entire basis for this “alarm”) predict a tropospheric warming trend of about 1.2:1 relative to the surface. That is to say, if the models are correct, we should see maximum warming here.

      Appell knows this of course. Because he is an intellectual sleaze ball, he pretends he doesn’t and looks for warming wherever he thinks he can find it. The more uncertain the temperature measurements, the better for him.

  62. Gordon Robertson says:

    @Joel Shore…”Individual photons go from hot to cold and cold to hot with impunity, but the equations that explain this transfer guarantee that there will always be more energy going from a hotter object to a colder object than the reverse”.

    Joel, Joel, Joel….why are you talking about photons with reference to heat?? 🙂 If you consider heat transfer within a metal, there is no reference to photons, since photons, if they exist, apply only to radiated EM. How do you account for heat transfer between two metal bodies touching each other? Why does heat flow only from the warmer body to the cooler body through conduction?

    Conduction and convection involve the transfer of heat through gases using all air molecules. In AGW theory, it is alleged that only gases like CO2 and water vapour can transfer heat. The point is that photons are nothing more than the medium through which heat is transferred, there is no equivalence between EM and heat as there is between work and heat.

    I don’t think it is correct to claim that EM can transfer heat in both directions, from hot to cold and cold to hot. In order for heat to be transferred from cold to hot, compensation is required, such as the energy introduced to such a system by a compressor and an electric motor in a refrigerator. Without that compensation, heat cannot be transferred from a colder body to a warmer body.

    The energy to which you refer (EM) is not the same energy as heat. It can transfer heat, in one direction without compensation, but it is not heat, and summing it does not bypass the 2nd law, which addresses losses in a system.

    Before the 2nd law, Carnot had claimed work was equivalent to heat and that transformation from one to the other were lossless. Due to the 2nd law, we now know that heat is consumed while producing work, and vice versa. Clausius even hypothesized that heat is consumed by internal processes as atoms take up energy to vibrate harder as the body warms. He referred to that as disgregation, the opposite of aggregation. I think that is a reference to atoms aggregating in a body due to chemical bonding and disgregation being a tendency for the bonds to pull apart under the influence of heating. That’s why metals expand when heated.

    There are losses in systems where heat is involved and the AGW theory does not address those losses. In fact, the AGW theory, in it’s back-radiation form is a recipe for perpetual motion through positive feedback..

    A photon of IR is part of the EM spectrum but heat is not part of the EM spectrum. The photons to which you refer are emitted from an atom, or a molecular bond, when an energy level transition down the way. Heat is related to that process indirectly, but it is more related to the average kinetic energy of atoms/molecules.

    I agree that EM radiation, in the form of IR, can produce heat in a body by raising the average internal energy of its atoms. That’s how heat is transferred by radiation. When packets of energy are radiated by a warmer body, they contain no heat. IR is the medium by which heat is transferred not the heat itself. If the packets don’t contact the atoms in another body they do nothing. An electrical radiator radiating in a room will warm the room through conduction and convection but alarmist would have us accept the room air is warmed by the tiny fraction of CO2 in the air.

    Heat has an equivalence to work, EM does not.

    You’re a physicist, help me out here. I have no interest in arguing with you or in being right, I am trying to learn what goes on at the atomic level. A warmer body is comprised of atoms with higher levels of kinetic energy. Clausius claimed that energy as internal energy and he included it in his heat calculations (dQ = dU + dW). Unfortunately, he lived before Planck discovered quantum levels and did not know about discrete energy levels in atoms, or about photons of energy.

    What I want to know is whether an atom at a higher energy level can be affected by the lower intensity and frequencies of IR radiation from a cooler body. It seems obvious that it can’t or heat would be able to be transferred freely both ways without compensation. If it can’t, then back-radiation from the cooler atmosphere cannot raise the surface temperature as claimed by alarmists like Rahmstorf et al.

    • JohnKl says:

      Hi Gordon Robertson,

      Thank you for your post, but imo I think your hung up on words. You stated:

      “The point is that photons are nothing more than the medium through which heat is transferred, there is no equivalence between EM and heat as there is between work and heat.”

      Excuse me, but EM waves transfer ENERGY. In the classical sense energy has been described as potential, work and heat based on what we believe the energy does. If we observe an object warm we assert energy has been added to the phenomenon and the mutation (warming) results. We claim that if an object warms heat has been transferred to it. Likewise, if certain compounds warm sufficiently to produce steam for example and the steam further powers machinery we assert the resulting mutation (machinery powered, steam moved, etc.) to be work. If we witness a pencil sitting on the top of a table we know by experience it may fall and label the possibility such a mutation may occur potential energy. Energy itself has never been & imo will never be observed humans simply label the form of energy based on the type of mutation that occurs to observed phenomenon.

      Have a great day!

      • Gordon Robertson says:

        @JohnKL “If we observe an object warm we assert energy has been added to the phenomenon and the mutation (warming) results”.

        John…talk about getting hung up on words. 🙂 Mutation???

        I am trying to move away from abstractions to get a picture of what is happening physically. I said there is not the same equivalence between EM and heat as between work and heat. That’s not words, that’s actuality.

        It is a well known fact in thermodynamics that heat and work are interchangeable, through equivalence. They cannot be compared directly with an equals sign because they have different parameters, even though attempts have been made to do just that.

        However, by measuring the work done by heat, we can establish an equivalence between the work and the heat, and vice-versa. That applies to internal atomic processes as well according to Clausius. When a metal is heated, and expands, the expansion is due to atoms increasing their mean free paths as their KE rises. That increased movement can be regarded as internal work.

        That cannot be done with EM via photons for the simple reason that heat is constrained to flow from a warmer region to a cooler region, without compensation. EM is free to flow both ways between objects of different temperatures but it is effective in one direction only as far as transferring heat is concerned.

        That was my argument with Joel. You cannot sum EM radiation between a warmer and a colder object and regard that as the same as heat transfer both ways. You may be able to calculate the expected heat transfer one way by knowing the properties of the emitting material, the medium through which the radiation travels, and the properties of the receiving material.

        BTW…that has not been done in the atmosphere to the best of my knowledge.

        Summing IR flow both ways, claiming it is +ve, therefore the 2nd law is satisfied, is nonsense. The 2nd law was introduced by Clausius partly to account for losses in heat processes. Summing IR between the surface and back completely ignores the losses and the mammoth difference in heat IR flux between what the surface radiates and what could be back-radiated by 1% of the atmosphere.

        Even if water vapour, which is the premier GHG radiator (96%) can back-radiate significant IR, it is a mere spit in the ocean compared to the IR lost to space.

        Richard Lindzen, in an article on the greenhouse effect, using both radiation and convection, claimed a doubling of CO2 would at best cause a fraction of a degree C warming.

        I can live with that.

        What I am trying to understand at an atomic level is why. It seems to me that if the atoms in a warmer body are at a higher average level of kinetic energy, the photons from a cooler body, with lower intensities and frequencies, cannot increase the KE in the warmer body.

        Where are the nuclear physicists when you need one? 🙂

        Picture this. If photons left the surface, and some of them were absorbed by GHGs, then the GHGs back-radiated some of that energy to the surface and it was absorbed by atoms at a higher KE level, raising their KE level, then they emitted energy from an even higher level of KE, and that cycle repeated, we’d have the potential for catastrophic positive feedback without increasing the amount of CO2.

        That does not happen and the 2nd law is clear that it can’t because heat can only be transferred from a warmer body to a cooler body without external compensation. It’s totally clear from the 2nd law that any energy back-radiated from a cooler atmosphere has no effect on the warmer surface.

  63. Scottar says:

    There are so called climate blogs, like skeptical science that will shout the pseudo science to the rafters while displaying the graphs that support their claims. But when you reply with info that was sourced from a credible blog or science blog they dismay it as: “It’s a blog or that’s not a science site!” It doesn’t matter if the person is a certified scientist or the sources where from credible people or organizations, if it didn’t come from the official- official science organizations it’s rubbish. So they make their outlandish claims claiming- well NOAA and NASA substantiate it, no matter how loony or contrive, in their flat brained perspectives it’s the real science. If they aren’t hooked on the coolaide then they must be surrogates of Sorros or some other AGWer. “Don’t confuse us with the facts, our minds are with the ‘consensus’ of the IPCC!” The science- technical world is upside-down as is the news media! The propaganda takeover is almost complete, just like in Germany back in the 30s.

  64. Keith Brogoitti says:

    I would like to remind everyone that meaningless statistics are 27.45%

  65. EBeck says:

    If 2010 is the second warmest year on record, doesn’t that mean 2011,2012 and 2013 were cooler than 2010? That shouldn’t be possible if greenhouse gasses are causing global warming. I also remember a story several years ago stating an increase in solar activity was causing mars to heat up. Since the earth is closer to the sun, the earth would heat up also.

  66. naturalfake says:

    Though I wrote this entry a few years ago on my blog, I’ve always thought it was interesting because in it you have one of the main proponents of AGW, in this case, Michael Mann, explaining in his own words exactly why what he doing isn’t science(or at the very least, science as it’s been traditionally understood):

    https://naturalfake.wordpress.com/2009/12/03/fruit-of-the-poison-tree-tarts-from-the-poison-fruit/

    In my opinion, who could take him, his conclusions, his followers, or AGW seriously after this?

  67. Ian says:

    No references. Not believable. From what I can tell, based on your post, you have no scientific support for your theory. I to can claim to be a climate researcher for 30 years but that doesn’t mean I am right about anything. Science is about asking questions and analyzing data; engineering is about applying the data to solve problems. You need to post references for any of this to be believable. And you can’t just reference your self or the Daily Mail as you did in this post.
    “And what about those 97% of scientists who agree? Well, what they all agree on is that if their government climate funding goes away, their careers will end.”
    There are so many things wrong with that statement I will just provide this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fallacies

  68. joecapoe says:

    We live in very confusing times. I just sense a force that is conspiring to take away our freedoms. If all the big wigs truly believed what they preach, they wouldn’t be flying private jets to all their summits, where the weather almost always mysteriosly breaks cold records.

  69. Please a special award to David Appell who in one comment dismissed the lack of lower tropospheric warming as unimportant because nobody lived there, then in his very next comment urged us to use ocean heat content (0-700 metre below surface) as the true measure.

    It takes special practice and years of years of ideological self indoctrination to reach that level of stupid.

  70. hurricane567 says:

    When an environmentalist or a communist (but i repeat myself) screams about global warming and waves reports like this one in my face my initial response are the words, “Medieval Warming Period.” They look at me like i’m crazy, so i explain, “The Vikings used to grow wheat and oats on the southern tip of Greenland and the English could grow enough grapes to support their own wine industry. Nobody does that now because its too cold!” They sputter,”That’s not scientific!””Fine, let me see your ice cores, your tree ring analysis, all the raw data from all your temperature stations, and any computer models you used to “normalize” that data. Please bear in mind i know about the Hockey Stick Chart.” That’s when they call me a 1%er or a racist or something.

  71. Dan Townsend says:

    Just wanted to say thank you!

    I would also encourage you to put a “like on facebook” button on your site. You could have one of the kids manage it! 🙂

    Hope this finds you and yours happy and well.

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