- New and improved old memes
- New debunkings
- Arctic Update
New and improved old memes
2008 will probably be 10th Hottest year since 1880. Of course that is not how the Guardian reported it, they said “2008 will be coolest year of the decade“, but in this case those are the same thing.
Three things they do NOT want you to look at in this case:
1) Obviously they don’t want you to look at the past 130 years where it is quite clear it’s still pretty freaking hot.
2) As discussed in the last blog post (and before), they do not want you to look at how the steady increase in temperature is made up of new record highs followed by short cooler periods;
3) They absolutely do NOT want you to look at the huge difference between where the global temperature anomaly is, and where it would be if we were not experiencing anthropogenic climate change.
Since the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is in the cool La Nina phase (and here) and Solar activity has been at a minimum we should actually be in a cool period with very low temperatures globally, not near record hot. I have no idea how low the anomaly ‘should be’ naturally, but almost definitely 0.0 to -0.5 somewhere.
Regardless of the facts we can expect the Denialosphere to continue spinning this as further “proof” that the climate change that isn’t happening has ended, or incoherence to that effect.
Of course Deniers are always trying to spin short term fluctuations as significant even the absurdity of it is apparent in the material they present. “Watts Up WithThat” give’s us “Satellite derived sea level updated- short term trend has been shrinking since 2005.“
Strictly speaking that title is true. Equally accurate titles would have been “Satellite derived sea level updated – normal variation in rising trend as expected”, or perhaps “Trivial fluctuations that mean nothing continue.”
If anything his “shrinking trend” is less significant than the ones 1994-1997 and late 1998 to 2001 and they had no influence on the real trend, as anyone can see by just looking at the graph.
Unfortunately Watts is probably correct in thinking that by giving it the headline that he did and drawing peoples attention only to the 2005-present fluctuation, most will leave with the impression that there has been some sort of reversal in the long term trend.
I expect that the “Models are Flawed” meme is going to take new force thanks to an unfortunate interview of Lenny Smith by Fred Pearce in New Scientist. “Are climate scientists overselling their models?” is a perfectly legitimate question to ask, and to publish on.
However, it seems to me that the rather informal dialogue lends itself to significant abuse. Initially Smith is not talking about the models themselves so much as the public perception of what the models can and can’t do. If I am reading it correctly his critique is not about the models accuracy, but rather their precision.
I think most people treat the two terms as near synonyms and muddle their meaning, but the difference is critical. For example, if I say the Sun is about 149 million kilometers from Earth I am being accurate, but imprecise. If I say it is exactly 149,141,592.65358979323846 million meters from Earth I am being very precise, but completely inaccurate.
Not that I disagree with Smith. He is absolutely right in stating “Effective application of climate science hinges on clear communication of which results we believe are robust and which are not”, and that the “…future warming could be greater or less than what is suggested by the diversity between models in the report.” I just think we need to bookmark that latter quote when this is inevitably cited as an ‘admission that the models are nonsense’.
UPDATE: Daily Mail right on cue “‘Climate change forecasters do not know how global warming will affect the world,’ top physicist claims.” Don’t these people have editors?
There is a new and most welcome series at Youtube coming from poster greenman3610 from a show “Changing Planet” by Peter Sinclair: Climate Denial Argument of the Month
The Solar Myth debunked
The 1970s Cooling Myth debunked
Favourite these, post them to your social networks, and post them in wherever you encounter the myth in question. I am looking forward to many more (I hope).
There is also postings of the show itself. This first one does a nice job on the “Arcitic Ice is Growing” myth:
Which is a segue to some very bad news about the Arctic, viz confirmation of the continued ice loss, and in a different study, what appears to be a fundamental change in the winds and currents which is accelerating ice loss. The paper in the Geophysical Research Letters is reported in Spiegel International as “Point of No Return for the Arctic Climate?”
A bleak picture indeed – don’t forget to help turn that around by posting and sharing the debunks I mention here. Thanks.
We give our consent every moment that we do not resist.
Denier “Challenge” aka Deathwatch Update: Day 56 … still no evidence.