Climate Fudge Factor Finally F**ked

— by Barry Brill, Chairman, NZ Climate Science Coalition

In a 2018 article “Human influence” is unquantifiable, I analysed the evidence offered by the IPCC for the most important conclusion of its AR5:

It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century. – (WGI 10.3–10.6, 10.9)

This seminal opinion turned out to be based upon three justifications in Section 10.3.1.1.3, all of which turned out on inspection to be based on circular reasoning:

  1. Given that the anthropogenic increase in GHGs likely caused 0.5 °C to 1.3 °C warming over 1951-2010, with other anthropogenic forcings probably contributing counteracting cooling.
  2. The effects of natural forcings and internal variability are estimated to be small.
  3. Well-constrained and robust estimates of net anthropogenic warming are substantially more than half the observed warming (Figure 10.4).

The 0.5 – 1.3 °C range in i. comes from applying the assumed climate sensitivity range (1.5 – 4.5 °C) to the known level of anthropogenic increase in GHGs and then assuming that the entire DAGW hypothesis is correct.

As the observed warming trend over 1951-2010 is only 0.6 °C, it follows from this reasoning that sensitivity must be close to the bottom of the assumed range – i.e., about 1.6 °C. But this low sensitivity figure is completely unacceptable to the IPCC. It would indicate that AGW will never be “dangerous”, and thereby destroy the whole post-modern ‘climate change’ narrative.

Simplicity itself

So, Professor Phil Jones introduced his famous “fudge factor”, which assumes that anthropogenic aerosols will always reduce anthropogenic warming by the difference between the observed warming and the modelled warming. It consists of an additional batch of made-up assumptions as follows:

  • If sensitivity is 4.5 °C, then aerosol-induced cooling is 0.8 °C
  • If sensitivity is 4.0 °C, then aerosol-induced cooling is 0.6 °C
  • If sensitivity is 3.0 °C, then aerosol-induced cooling is 0.45 °C
  • If sensitivity is 2.0 °C, then aerosol-induced cooling is 0.3 °C
  • If sensitivity is 1.5 °C, then aerosol-induced cooling is 0.1 °C

Beautiful! No matter what temperature trend is actually observed, it can never disprove the ECS range adopted by the IPCC (actually borrowed from the 1979 Charney Report). If actual temperatures turn out to be much lower than modelled predictions, then the level of aerosols must be higher than expected. If modelled predictions are not scary enough, then just assume that the level of aerosols will drop and scale up the temperatures!

When you think about it, this fudge factor has had massive effects, in confounding the core of climate change science for the past two decades. Despite the millions of dollars poured into research, climate scientists have never been able to derive plausible figures for climate sensitivity. In consequence, they have never been able to produce actual evidence that the “enhanced greenhouse effect” is real and dangerous.

On the other side of the coin, sceptical scientists cannot disprove the hypothesis because the aerosol variable creates an equation that cannot be solved.

Just keep man-made aerosols secret

But the fudge factor, and all its ensuing confusion, depends crucially upon the actual level of human-caused aerosols remaining unknown.

Enter Professor Johannes Quaas, a meteorologist at Leipzig University, and colleagues from Europe, China and the US who have published1 robust observational evidence of the level of aerosol pollution. Writing in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, Professor Quaas said:

We analysed data from NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites. They have been providing comprehensive satellite observations of the Earth since the year 2000, measuring incoming and outgoing radiation, but also clouds and aerosol pollution. The latter has decreased significantly across North America, Europe and East Asia since 2000. Compared to the year 2000, it has led to an increase in the warming effect that is up to 50 per cent of the one by CO2 increases in the same period.

Science editor David Whitehouse points out that this relatively sudden drop in aerosol-induced cooling could well account for the increased global temperatures kicked off by the giant 2015-16 El Niño. If so, he concludes that the warming “hiatus” may not have ended yet:

When taken together with a couple of super-strong El Nino events which temporarily drove up global temperature (see graph …), the new findings suggest that the global warming hiatus — clearly evident prior to 2014 — may not have ended yet. If NASA’s satellite data are confirmed, it would suggest that much of the very moderate changes in global temperature this century may have been driven primarily by cleaner air and naturally-occurring El Ninos.

Although Dr Whitehouse expresses this view in tentative terms, it is hard to see how his hypothesis could be wrong, unless the Quaas paper is wrong.

If half of the observed 21st-century warming has been caused by aerosol reductions, then it obviously has not been caused by the observed increase in GHG forcing. Take away 50% of the current modest figures and the residual temperature trend is not statistically significant (i.e., it is less than the margin of error). That can only mean that the GHG-warming hiatus that commenced in 1997 continues.

The period 2012-15 saw a blizzard of research papers from IPCC lead authors explaining why a warming pause that lasted 10-15 years didn’t mean very much. There were none suggesting that a pause of 25+ years could be less than fatal for the credibility of climate models (or at least the 99% that assume an ECS higher than 2 °C).

The Quaas et al. paper is new and there has not yet been time for potential rebuttals or replication. But, if it holds up, it could make life very difficult for climate alarmists. As Dr Whitehouse notes:

The new observational data has strong implications for predictions of future global warming due to greenhouse gas forcing, suggesting it might be significantly lower than most models suggest.

We can be sure of one thing. The Quaas paper will inevitably bathe Phil Jones’ fudge factor in a very bright light – which has been lacking for the past quarter century. Can it survive such intense scrutiny?

It will surely be exposed as one of the great scandals of this already scandal-riven corner of public science.


 

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  1. Quaas et al. (2022) Robust evidence for reversal of the trend in aerosol effective climate forcing. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, 2022; 22 (18): 12221 DOI: 10.5194/acp-22-12221-2022

8 Thoughts on “Climate Fudge Factor Finally F**ked

  1. Rickoshay on 21/11/2022 at 4:15 pm said:

    Yeh id have too call bullshiz on C02 induced warming full stop, just another scam from the same ppl that brought you C19, designed to decrease your wealth and complete control over your freedom via cdc,s and health passports.
    Best thing to do is leave the U.N. the wef and g20 fiascos once and for all, dump the who and repudiate agw all together, let the rest of the west go woke and broke, let them depopulate themselves whilst we just investigating the money trails in our own public office holders,
    plenty of evidence of Treason, Fraud and Crimes against Humanity to go around them all.

  2. Tricky Dicky on 31/12/2022 at 10:42 am said:

    And so the dance begins. I have a usual morning routine. After breakfast, I get on the internet to check out what has happened overnight in the rest of the big, bad world and what updates I can get from a list of climate skeptic websites in my bookmarks. Now, the UNIPCC and Google got together and decided they know what is good for me and what isn’t, what I should know and what I shouldn’t. Only UNIPCC sanctioned climate misinformation, disinformation and out and out lies are allowed. Once I have visited these sights, if I go to Google I get a message telling me that they have detected unusual activity on my computer. I can’t access the Google search engine unless I verify that I am not a bot. My computer is pretty secure with the latest, highest rated security suite so I am reasonably confident I don’t have any malicious code and this message only comes up once I have visited climate skeptic web sites. Rather than submit the form, probably giving Google more tracking data, I have to close my browser, clear the search history and switch to an alternative search engine, usually DuckDuckGo. Eventually I can get on to Google again. I don’t know if anyone else is getting this. Big brother is watching me – is he watching you?

  3. Tricky Dicky on 31/12/2022 at 6:46 pm said:

    Just finished reading a paper published in Natural Science, September this year.
    On the Solar Climate of the Moon and the Resulting Surface Temperature Distribution. Kramm et al.

    These guys looked at the surface temperature of the moon and considered a whole load of factors such as distance to the Sun, orbital factors, Earth’s influence etc. Now we all know that our current climate models are based on using the Stefan-Boltzmann equation to establish the base temperature of Earth. It gives us a result of 255 K or -18 degrees c, meaning that we have to find another 33 degrees c to get to our actual temperature. Enter the greenhouse effect to explain the difference. Except that climate science may have started out from completely the wrong premise and has subsequently built a whole discipline on an erroneous proposition. According to Kramm et al, the Stefan-Boltzmann equation can be applied to the moon, but with more certainty given the moon has no atmosphere to mess up the results. The conclusion of the paper is:
    “Finally, based on the 24 DLRE (Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment) datasets our study showed that applying the Stefan-Boltzmann power law to the globally averaged bolometric temperatures provides meritless results for rocky celestial bodies.” That is rocky celestial bodies including the Earth. In other words, using the Stefan-Boltzmann equation as a starting point has led us down the completely wrong path and everything built on this incorrect foundation is absolute bollocks. Did that make the main stream media? No. What we got was the cold wave hitting the US. I do feel sorry for these people and those that have died as a result. It is a tragedy and we should show respect for those who have lost their lives. Instead, right after it happens, the usual climate suspects predict this weather can happen as a result of a warming world. That’s right, a warming world causes extreme cold. Who’d a thunk it. 1979 to 2011, Earth’s albedo decreased, so less sunlight was reflected back in to space resulting in an extra 6.5 watts per square metre energy input to the Earth’s climate system ( Pistone, Eiseman and Ramanathan). This is at the same time that “supposed” carbon dioxide driven heating increased by 0.62 watts per square metre, one tenth of the energy input. This is why we can’t beat the machine. Not that we should stop trying, ever!!!

  4. Trcky Dicky on 31/12/2022 at 6:55 pm said:

    Greenhouse effect in semi-transparent planetary atmospheres
    Ferenc M. Miskolczi
    Quarterly Journal of the Hungarian Meteorological Service Vol. 111, No. 1, January–March 2007, pp. 1–44

    Conclusion: “Considering the magnitude of the observed global average surface temperature rise and the consequences of the new greenhouse equations, the increased atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations must not be the reason for global warming.”
    Heard about this? No, of course not.

  5. Tricky Dicky on 01/01/2023 at 10:36 am said:

    Sorry guys, the reduced albedo paper ( Pistone, Eiseman and Ramanathan). is bollocks. It was based on disappearing arctic sea ice. It looks like it was written about the same time NASA discovered their ice mapping satellite was out by about half a metre. Where there was half a metre of sea ice, the satellite said there was none and where there was ice a metre thick, the satellite was measuring half a metre. However, NASA’s MERRA 2 satellite did show an increase of 3.6 watts per square meter in shortwave radiation due to reduction in cloud cover. My bad. Teach me to properly read my resources first. Mind you, it is new year and I did kick off celebrations early 😉

  6. Barry Brill on 16/01/2023 at 7:31 pm said:

    Keeping up to date:

    Javier Vinos – https://wattsupwiththat.com/2023/01/07/2022-seventh-warmest-year-warming-slows-down/

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) insists that “humans are the dominant cause of observed global warming over recent decades.” (IPCC AR6, page 515).

    There is no evidence for this statement. I know this because I have read thousands of scientific papers looking for it. And no, computer models are not evidence of anything but the programming skills of their authors. Models and their predictions are constantly changing and when our knowledge of climate changes, they must be redone.

  7. Ross on 19/02/2023 at 10:11 pm said:

    Ed Berry ( edberry.com) versus Andrews. Clear thinking about Atmospheric Co2. Possibly one of the most comprehensive printed debates on the effects of atmospheric CO2.
    I am neither qualified to comment or fully understand this, but find Ed is one of the easier reads on this topic. Mostly I find the comments can be more informative and will be watching over the next few weeks. It looks like Berry has a strong and compelling case. I read several science based sites, mostly WUWT, and have never found that definitive conclusive science that would put this debate to bed, although the case for CO2 warming appears weak and overwhelmingly alarmist.

    • Andrew on 21/02/2023 at 3:08 pm said:

      Ross – I have been working in Agriculture & some Horticulture for nigh on 50yrs, so not long! when I did my Ag degree whey back in the dark ages we were taught a very simple lesson about CO2 – it was called the “Carbon Cycle”. I think it should still be compulsory reading; It isn’t rocket science, but it is Natures science and it has been proven to work ever since Adam was a young boy and longer. Quite simply without CO2 most living animals incl humans would die off – that is all the science you need but learn about photosynthesis as well.
      A quick definition is: photosynthesis is the process by which green plants absorb CO2 and with light energy convert into chemical energy. During photosynthesis , light energy is captured and used to convert to water, and minerals into oxygen and energy – animals use the O2 given off!

      It is impossible to overestimate the importance of photosynthesis for life on Earth. If photosynthesis ceased, there would soon be little food or other organic matter on Earth so we need CO2 to enable this to happen. Most organisms would disappear, and in time Earth’s atmosphere would become nearly devoid of oxygen so most if not all mammals would die.

      I am not qualified to have a formal opinion on if CO2 causes the climate to change but, to date, I have yet to find an argument that a)supports CO2 causes the climate to change and b) overrides the importance of the above.
      cheers Andrew (my sheep convert the CO2 absorbed by pasture into tasty meat!!)

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