Public climate boffins give poor service

Drs Wratt, Reisinger & Renwick

From left, Drs David Wratt, Andy Reisinger and James Renwick.

Bob Carter and Bryan Leyland published a sceptical article in the Dom Post. Gareth Renowden penned a response which was republished on SciBlogs (run by the Science Media Centre), it’s scatalogical title signalling his customary toxic tone.

His article contributed nothing to the climate debate but its sheer offensiveness forced the Royal Society to give us space for rebuttal, which SciBlogs had refused. The decision to allow the insulting and poisonous Hot Topic blog to be mirrored on SciBlogs must be one of the worst decisions ever by the Royal Society. For no less scientific account of the dangers allegedly posed by our emissions scarcely exists, yet it is given sanctuary by an organisation founded upon the principles of science.

It is beyond disgraceful.

So I submitted a letter to the Dominion Post supporting Bob Carter and Bryan Leyland. It wasn’t published, perhaps because the word ‘deceit’ was taken as insulting. I changed it to ‘camouflage’ as follows:

We should all support Professor Bob Carter and Mr Bryan Leyland as they battle for a rational approach to climate change. But why has this unlikely battle arisen? Because, strangely, after more than 300 years of increasing practise of the scientific method, emptying churches and filling universities around the world, we now brazenly ignore the tenets of science and believe our global warming priesthood when they tell us we control the climate. Really? Hah!

But only thus could three senior public scientists tell us with a straight face: “There is no other plausible way to explain the observed changes.” For that’s not scientific observation, it’s ignorance—the opposite of the scientific method. With that statement, Drs Wratt, Reisinger and Renwick (WRR) abandon investigation and simply guess that we’re heating the earth to a dangerous degree.

The rest of their opinion piece is just anecdotal evidence of warming—and nothing shows it’s man-made. WRR can’t think of anything else and they’re confident that we did it. But with our understanding of climate forcings known everywhere as masked by doubt, their confidence is unmasked as camouflage.

Carter and Leyland demand better service for the New Zealand public. So do I.

Richard Treadgold
Convenor
Climate Conversation Group

There’ll be more to say on this, particularly if actually discussing the science of climate change ever catches on.

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Andy
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Andy

The comments at SciBlogs seem to have become completely bogged down in issues around “conflicts of interest”

It would appear having associations with a conservative think tank disbars you from any public discussion

Having associations with left wing activist groups, and no background in science, is completely fine, of course

Simon
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Simon

So you agree with Bryan Leyland’s comment that “man-made global warming is the biggest hoax in the history of the world”? How does this hoax work? Are Drs Wratt, Reisinger and Renwick (WRR) wilful perpetrators of the hoax or innocent dupes? If the latter, how do you know this? They are the experts, you are a lay-person. The scientific literature would appear to back WRR’s opinion, 97% of a sample of papers contend that there is a human role in climate change, even Richard Tol doesn’t dispute this.

Andy
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Andy

Not sure who the “you” is that Simon is referring to, but I don’t agree with the sentiments that it is the “biggest hoax”

It doesn’t help the argument by using terms like “hoax, “scam”, “fraud” etc and immediately deflects the argument away from the topic and onto the person making the accusations.

Richard C (NZ)
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Richard C (NZ)

>”They are the experts, you are a lay-person” They are experts in what exactly Simon? We’ve been over this while you were away (‘Profiteers of Doom’, ‘Kelly Censures Royal Society’) so you’re a bit behind in the discussion but I’ll repeat some for your benefit. The prerequisite for climate science is meteorology surely. Firstly, are Wratt, Reisinger and Renwick qualified in the fundamentals? Fundamentals which, I note, includes the thermodynamics of the atmosphere without recourse the the greenhouse effect i.e. temperature is derived from mass, gravity and pressure as per Maxwell, Carnot and Clausius and the US Standard Atmosphere compiled for the space race. Are Wratt, Reisinger and Renwick experts in all of that? I doubt it, probably wouldn’t know where to start. Dave Frame has physics qualifications so at least he has a head start but whether he’s an expert in the above is highly questionable too. Then there’s all the different areas of specialty, being expert in one does not necessarily mean being expert in another. What specific qualifications for what particular facet? What transferable skills from the relevant fundamental sciences (of which climate is not one)? Climate scientists don’t have… Read more »

Richard C (NZ)
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Richard C (NZ)

>”97% of a sample of papers contend that there is a human role in climate change, even Richard Tol doesn’t dispute this.” You really have no clue whatsoever about what you’re on about have you Simon? You just spout any rubbish that comes to mind. Here’s Richard Tol in The Guardian: ‘The claim of a 97% consensus on global warming does not stand up’ Dana Nuccitelli writes that I “accidentally confirm the results of last year’s 97% global warming consensus study”. Nothing could be further from the truth. I show that the 97% consensus claim does not stand up. At best, Nuccitelli, John Cook and colleagues may have accidentally stumbled on the right number. Cook and co selected some 12,000 papers from the scientific literature to test whether these papers support the hypothesis that humans played a substantial role in the observed warming of the Earth. 12,000 is a strange number. The climate literature is much larger. The number of papers on the detection and attribution of climate change is much, much smaller. Advertisement Cook’s sample is not representative. Any conclusion they draw is not about “the literature” but rather about the papers… Read more »

Andy
Guest
Andy

“Even Richard Tol doesn’t dispute this”

Therein lies the rub.

Richard Tol (like Roger Pielke Jr) goes with the science, and forms his policy around that.

The problem is, he isn’t screaming from the rooftops. Therefore is is a “denier”
(Tol is featured in Lawrence Solomon’s book “The Deniers”)

Richard C (NZ)
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Richard C (NZ)

The CO2-forced predictions of atmospheric temperature, sea level rise, precipitation, whatever, are just not being validated by reality. Therefore anyone that continues to contend that the predictions ARE reality without retraction or withdrawal, are perpetrating a lie, a hoax, a scientific fraud, call it any of these, and are nothing more than the modern day equivalent of snakeoil salesmen and women.

Exhibit A: Barak Obama and John Kerry.

Simon
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Simon

97% is probably about right. There is only a very small pool of climate science specialists that claim that AGW does not exist (Soon, Christy, Lindzen,Spencer, Curry,Singer,Piekle Snr). There are probably a couple of others and that is it. All of the others tend to be non-specialist engineers, geologists, and the totally unqualified.

Andy
Guest
Andy

We live in a topsy turvy world where “truth” is determined by authority and personal views contrary to this truth is a hate crime

Magoo
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Magoo

Simon – you say the following:

‘There is only a very small pool of climate science specialists that claim that AGW does not exist (Soon, Christy, Lindzen,Spencer, Curry,Singer,Piekle Snr).’

That is untrue, they all believe in AGW, but believe the empirical evidence suggests it isn’t a problem – probably due to a lack of empirical evidence supporting positive feedback from water vapour. CO2 by itself is too weak to make much of a difference to the temperature without positive feedback from water vapour to double it. I can direct you to the IPCC’s statements on this issue if you’d like.

Those who claim that these scientists disbelieve AGW are either ignorant or dishonest.

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”All of the others tend to be non-specialist engineers, geologists, and the totally unqualified.” Fortunately, in this thread, I don’t have to repeat myself. All I have to do is point back upthread here: https://www.climateconversation.org.nz/2015/03/public-climate-boffins-give-poor-service/comment-page-1/#comment-1308914 Where it is shown that climate scientist’s, generally, are not “qualified” in the fundamentals of their field. In fact the “non-specialist” engineers and technologists, chemical, heat, process, power, etc, have far more relevant qualifications, expertise, and experience to apply the fundamentals of chemistry and thermodynamics to the atmosphere and ocean than the average climate scientist ever will. And thier science literature is not beholden to public funding and the political influences that overrides objectivity. I would point out too that climate modelling is not an expertise if the models don’t model real-world climate. Theirs is only an expertise in fictional climates generated by the notion of CO2 forcing e.g. in the ‘Climate Models’ thread: https://www.climateconversation.org.nz/open-threads/climate/climate-science/climate-models/comment-page-1/#comment-1289298 ‘Are Climate Modelers Scientists?’ by Pat Frank February 24, 2015 For going on two years now, I’ve been trying to publish a manuscript that critically assesses the reliability of climate model projections. The manuscript has been submitted twice and rejected twice from two… Read more »

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”There is only a very small pool of climate science specialists that claim that AGW does not exist (Soon, Christy, Lindzen,Spencer, Curry,Singer,Piekle Snr)”

Please quote these “claims” Simon. I think you’re making this up (as you are prone to do).

For example, Judith Curry certainly does NOT “claim that AGW does not exist”.

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”There is only a very small pool of climate science specialists that claim that AGW does not exist (Soon, Christy, Lindzen,Spencer, Curry,Singer,Piekle Snr)” I think you might have difficulty finding a Christy, Spencer or Pielke Snr quote to support you too Simon, much like Curry. In these cases it’s more about “degree” as in this article about Christy (not a direct quote of Christy note but a paraphrase probably): “Christy suggested a recently launched congressional investigation into sources of his and other climate scientists’ research funding is an attempt by Democrats in Washington to squelch dissenting opinions about the degree of climate warming and the role that human-generated greenhouse gas emissions have in a shifting climate.” http://www.eenews.net/stories/1060015776 No claim there that “AGW does not exist”. What can be inferred is that Christy is of the position that GW exists separate to AGW which also exists but the “degree” of AGW in GW is much less than the “mainstream” contention, certainly not alarming, model evidence wrong, and therefore subsequent policies are wrong too as per this the article: “Among other things, Christy has said IPCC models suggesting that climate change is an imminent threat… Read more »

Andy
Guest
Andy

The UN is pretty good at marketing unproven ideas.
Apparently they voted Israel as the worst country in the world for human rights violations against women, which is pretty stiff given the somewhat less than ideal conditions for women in Saudi Arabia and just about every other Islamic country

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

The following article, apart from the title, illustrates why John Christy is a major problem for the US Democrats and hence his inclusion in their witch hunt:

Climate expert John Christy on funding: ‘No one is paying me to have my view’

http://www.al.com/news/huntsville/index.ssf/2015/03/climate_expert_john_christy_on.html?ath=3684250753c62b8752e8389d42ec3545

In the first photo, John Christy in his office with the models vs observations divergence graph up on his computer screen in the background.

Next a click-to-enlarge of the same graph supplied to the author Paul Gattis by John Christy.

Then the second photo of Republican Senator Jeff Sessions presenting the same offending Christy graph on the US Senate floor Jan 27, 2015.

That Christy graph rankles big time with communitarian Obama’s brand of Democrats, witch hunter and Communist Party USA affiliated Raul Grijalva in particular, so natch John Christy becomes the target instead of the graph.

Anything to divert attention from the graph.

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”The prerequisite for climate science is meteorology surely. Firstly, are Wratt, Reisinger and Renwick qualified in the fundamentals?”

Dr David Wratt has a PhD in Atmospheric Physics
https://www.niwa.co.nz/people/david-wratt

Good, specific to the fundamentals. So David, how is the temperature of the atmosphere from surface to TOA determined (i.e. meteorology)? Is it:

A) By radiative forcing and the greenhouse effect, or

B) By mass/gravity/pressure as per Maxwell/Carnot/Clausius

Andy Reisinger has Dip. in Physics (equiv. MSc (Hons); Bremen/Germany), PhD (Canterbury) – See more at: http://www.nzclimatechangecentre.org/ipcc/nz_input/reisinger#sthash.90XfTW8V.dpuf

Much like Dave Frame, basics but not specific, but still should be able to answer A) or B)?

James Renwick has BSc (Hons), Mathematics, Canterbury, (1977); MSc, Statistics, Victoria University of Wellington, (1989); PhD, Atmospheric Sciences, U. Washington (Seattle) (1995).
http://www.victoria.ac.nz/sgees/about/staff/james-renwick

Much like David Wratt so should be able to elucidate on A) or B) and pass the test commendably. But would he venture there? I doubt it.

Then we move on to radiative heating effect on materials, SWR vs DLR (C), and the components of DLR e.g. where is CO2 in all of this (D).

It’s C) by which these guys will hang themselves. I bet we don’t hear a peep.

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

I’d also like to know the respective opinions and the basis of them from Wratt, Reisinger and Renwick of what their estimation of planetary thermal lag of the sun => ocean => atmosphere system is. Call this E).

And supplementary, what are the implications of that with respect to the secular trend of global temperature (neglecting oceanic oscillations). Make this F).

Most recent literature I know of finds 30 – 40 years. Modern solar Grand Maximum was 1986. 1986 + 35 = 2021.

Richard Treadgold
Guest

Do you seriously think they might not answer your A/B and C/D questions according to science but choose bigotry instead? Or do I quite misread the questions?

Andy
Guest
Andy

On an off topic but relevant note, this came to my attention:

A 60-year-old maths problem first put forward by Nobel laureate Enrico Fermi (pictured) has been solved by researchers at the University of East Anglia, the Università degli Studi di Torino (Italy) and the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (US).”

and the article concludes

“This is an interesting example on how cross-fertilisation between different areas of maths and physics can be sometimes very successful.”

https://www.uea.ac.uk/about/-/uea-mathematicians-solve-60-year-old-problem

Oh and congratulations to UEA on this great piece of scholarship. Nice work

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”the scientific method”

Includes a null hypothesis. Given climate science has not documented an AGW hypothesis there’s obviously no null hypothesis either.

Fortunately Dr Roy Clark, commercial optics expert, has documented a null hypothesis which he submitted to the US EPA along with about 30,000 other submissions on their CO2-is-a-pollutant deliberations:

‘A Null Hypothesis For CO2’
http://appinsys.com/GlobalWarming/EPA_Submission_RClark.pdf

Received a solid ignoring of course but still valid nonetheless.

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”Do you seriously think they might not answer your A/B and C/D questions according to science but choose bigotry instead?” No. I think we have to distinguish between the scientivists who use the “denier” tag liberally and scientists who don’t. I can’t recall any of these 3 guys crossing the threshold, nothing I can quote anyway. What I seriously think is that each of the 3 would run from probing questions like A-D (perhaps not E-F – that would be enlightening) as far and as fast as they could, thereby avoiding having to directly answer and go on record if at all possible (as per John Morgan). It’s not what they say, it’s what they don’t that matters. I’m sure they’re very comfortable not being asked publicly but how long can that last? All it takes is one interview that takes a wrong turn. This happened recently in Humphrys/BBC vs Palmer/Oxford Univ. Booker: “The fact that the BBC should choose only to interview those it knows will support its own ludicrously propagandist “narrative” on climate change – regardless of the facts – is, of course, nothing new. At least on this occasion, Humphrys… Read more »

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”What I seriously think is that each of the 3 would run from probing questions like A-D (perhaps not E-F – that would be enlightening)” Dr Kevin Trenberth on E (but not F): ‘The Role Of The Oceans In Climate’ The thermal inertia of a 90 m layer can add a delay of about 6 years to the temperature response to an instantaneous change (this time corresponds to an exponential time constant in which there is a 63% response toward a new equilibrium value following an abrupt change). As a result, actual changes in climate tend to be gradual. With its mean depth of about 3800 m, the total ocean would add a delay of 230 years to the response if rapidly mixed. However, mixing is not a rapid process for most of the ocean so that in reality the response depends on the rate of ventilation of water between the well-mixed upper layers of the ocean and the deeper, more isolated layers that are separated by the thermocline (the ocean layer exhibiting a strong vertical temperature gradient). The rate of such mixing is not well established and varies greatly geographically. An overall… Read more »

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

Just to clarify why I’m banging on about planetary thermal lag and why the estimates of it by scientists in the climate arena, whatever their AGW position, matter VERY much in terms of public perception.

Ignoramuses and propagandists like the contributors to the Skeptical Science blog and many of the CO2-centric IPCC solar specialists demand an INSTANTANEOUS atmospheric temperature response to solar change i.e. they say that given solar output has declined since 1986 (minimally – about 0.4 W.m-2) then if the sun is the temperature driver there should have been cooling since 1986 but there hasn’t been therefore the sun is not the driver.

This is a thermodynamically illiterate demand and conclusion. The 1986 solar peak will not be seen as a secular (neglecting oceanic oscillations) atmospheric temperature peak until somewhere between 1996 and 2086 by Dr Kevin Trenberth’s estimate above for example.

Hardly an instantaneous response.

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”Ignoramuses and propagandists like the contributors to the Skeptical Science blog ………………………demand an INSTANTANEOUS atmospheric temperature response to solar change”

That would be this page:

‘Sun & climate: moving in opposite directions’
http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming.htm

Here’s PMOD from 1986 with trend:
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/pmod/from:1986/plot/pmod/from:1986/trend

Illusory. Although the Grand Maximum is generally accepted to be 1986, the actual TSI drop didn’t occur until 2006 by PMOD. Same graph again this time 1986 – 2005:

http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/pmod/from:1986/to:2005/plot/pmod/from:1986/to:2005/trend

Sun & climate: moving in opposite directions? I don’t think so.

Adding 2006 data:
http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/pmod/from:1986/to:2006/plot/pmod/from:1986/to:2006/trend

Sun & climate: moving in opposite directions? Yes, from 2006 on.

But this from SkS and the “scientists” is dead wrong both empirically and thermodynamically:

“Since the sun and climate are going in opposite directions [over the last 35 years (see article)] scientists conclude the sun cannot be the cause of recent global warming”

As propaganda though, rates very well and disseminated widely.

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

‘First Principles of Meteorology and Air Pollution’ [Book]
Authors: Lazaridis, Mihalis

Chapter 2: First Principles of Meteorology [from web search]

2.6.3 Heating of the Earth’s Surface and Heat Conduction

Radiation from the sun is the main heat source for the Earth’s surface. The heating of the surfaces and their temperature is dependent on a number of parameters such as:

The absorbency of a surface. Every body that receives a quantity of radiation absorbs part of its energy. The percentage of adsorption is dependent on the body’s nature and the radiation.

# # #

Climate science would have everyone believe that SWR power (solar received at surface) = DLR power (downwelling from atmospheric air mass to the surface) on a Watts per m^2 to Watts per m^2 basis, and that the heating effect (absorption) on a material e.g. seawater, is exactly the same for SWR and DLR on that basis.

First Principles of Meteorology disagrees.

So how do climate scientists Wratt and Renwick (Reisinger excused), qualified in atmospheric physics and sciences respectively i.e. meteorology fundamentals (hopefully), wriggle out of this?

Richard C (NZ)
Guest
Richard C (NZ)

>”Climate science would have everyone believe that SWR power (solar received at surface) = DLR power (downwelling from atmospheric air mass to the surface) on a Watts per m^2 to Watts per m^2 basis, and that the heating effect (absorption) on a material e.g. seawater, is exactly the same for SWR and DLR on that basis.”

Like this (Earth’s Energy Budget): http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Topics/Fig1_GheatMap.png

161 W.m-2 incoming solar radiation (SWR/SSR) “adsorbed by surface”
333 W.m-2 back radiation (DLR) “adsorbed by surface”

Except what climate science DOES NOT SAY is that the respective adsorption and heating effect, SSR vs DLR is radically different especially for seawater covering the greater part of the earth’s surface.

First Principles of Meteorology on the other hand, without going into detail, DOES SAY “the percentage of adsorption is dependent on the body’s nature and the radiation” i.e. the heating effect is not the same for SSR and DLR on a W.m-2 to W.m-2 basis.

Climate science lies by omission, meteorology tells the truth overtly. In which camp are you David Wratt and James Renwick?

HemiMck
Guest
HemiMck

Once more a headline not supported by the text and likely to be repeated.

http://cubiclane.com/2015/03/31/antarctica-hottest-day-antarctica-may-have-experienced-its-hottest-day-ever-42895

A spot temperature at a remote base on the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsular was recorded on 24th March at 17.5C against a previous high in 1961 of 17.1C.

Clearly that warrants the headline of “Hottest day ever in Antarctica”. NOT

A quick check of Scott Base shows that the maximum for whole month of March was -4.9C against an all time high of +13C.

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