Monday, April 5, 2010

Canada: Government report

The Edmonton journal reports: Climate-change skeptics have it wrong, memo to minister says

19 comments:

plazamoyua said...

Thank's. It is a perfect example showing how defenseless is a politician on respect to experts.

the memorandum said the IPCC was still the best source of information on climate science, backed up by findings of many major national science academies around the world.

And it is quite so. But, where is the study on the quality, or the uncertainity, of such science? There is no need, apparently. Being a "science", there is no more to speak of.

And the obvious bias:

The document noted that new scientific research produced since the last IPCC report suggests the panel underestimated some impacts of global warming, such as rising sea levels and disrupted ecosystems in the oceans.

But no need to tell rising temperatures, or Arctic ice cap melting have been, so far, overestimated.

No wonder public trust in climate science has been diminishing. But, if they keep playing with such memorandums, and politicians keep talking about "the science", it will be science in general, and of course politics, who will lost any credibility. And this can't be of any good.

Marco said...

@Plazamoyua:
Don't know where you get the idea that temperatures have been overestimated, but arctic ice melting is actually *under*estimated. The current model runs give the earliest estimates of a (nearly) ice-free arctic (in summer) in 2035, which is 15 years earlier than the earliest IPCC AR4 estimate.

Anonymous said...

Most people cannot read the scientific papers dealing with climate change, nor do they take the time to do research in climate change. They instead form their opinions on the basis of what they read in the newspapers. If the newspapers are uniformly on the side of the climate change, then the public tend to favor that side.

When the CRU documents became public, many people lost faith in the conventional wisdom. The significance of the CRU documents was not they changed the scientific basis of climate change, but that caused some people to question articles such as the one in the Edmonton journal.

Of interest to me were the comments that followed the articles. They did not indicate a great deal of scientific knowledge but the opinons seemed to be strongly held.

klee12

pgosselin said...

Ananymous,
Even scientists don't understand the goobbledygook that is written. reports:
If you have 30 minutes here is an amusing talk by Nobel Prize winner Kary Mullis on the scientific approach. Near the end he talks about the IPCC and the science.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNOtiRB3uyk

Marco said...

@P Gosselin:

Kary Mullis? Seriously? The man denies HIV causes AIDS, he denies CFCs affect the ozone layer, and he believes in astrology. He even claims to have met aliens.

Are these really the type of people you want to use as credible sources?

plazamoyua said...

@ Marco

Don't know where you get the idea that temperatures have been overestimated, ...

From the decadal trend, as measured by satellites.

... but arctic ice melting is actually *under*estimated. The current model runs give the earliest estimates of a (nearly) ice-free arctic (in summer) in 2035, which is 15 years earlier than the earliest IPCC AR4 estimate.

I don't find particulary interesting to compare models with models, nor estimates with estimates. Nor do I have more trust in current models than I had in the earliest ones. You see, I find it very boring when estimates are estimates when they happen to be right (quite uncommon), but only "secenarios" in the normal cases. What is going to be the song this summer? The forth minimum ever recvorded? The seventh?

30 years of ice measurements where history tells you there is high variability, and cicles. Yea, I know there are scientists thinking it's only matter of known forcings and feedbacks, and thus modelable. They might be right; but when I see their models come true during the lenght of at least one whole cicle, I'll believe them. I promise you.

P Gosselin said...

The Nobel Committee really knows how to choose them, wouldn't you say?

Marco said...

@plazamoyua:
You're an interesting fella. First you claim arctic ice sea decline is overestimated by the IPCC (based on models), and when I note that it actually is underestimated, you start complaining about the models!

And the decadal trend measured by the satellites does not provide any evidence that the trend is overestimated by the IPCC.

@P Gosselin:
I'd say that Kary Mullis is the worst choice as a credible commentator on anything but nucleic acids. Even some of his comments on his own invention have become out of touch with reality.

plazamoyua said...

Let me see, Marco.

As far as I know, you said: The current model runs give the earliest estimates of a (nearly) ice-free arctic (in summer) in 2035, which is 15 years earlier than the earliest IPCC AR4 estimate.

So, may I understand you are deciding un underestimation of old models based on newer models, or may I not? Models to models, right?

You're an interesting fella. First you claim arctic ice sea decline is overestimated by the IPCC (based on models), and when I note that it actually is underestimated, you start complaining about the models!

Quite so. I don't understand, as you seem to, that a model proyection is the reality. And I did not complain (distrust) about the models "when" you said something, but in the very fisrt place. And also afterwards. So, always. No contradiction, save in your peculiar logic.

Now, try to go to the beginning. The Canadian memo. Things are worse than we thought. ¿Everything? Yea, no doubts.

Serreze, June 2009:

To set the record straight, I never made a “prediction”. I said the north pole might melt out and I was not alone in making such speculation. It did not melt out and I got some flack for this. So be it. As for the “great recovery” of ice extent in 2008 heard in some circles, it was a recovery from lowest (2007) to second lowest (2008).

And:

Spring is increasingly dominated by thin, first-year ice prone to melting out in summer;
As the thin ice now starts to melt out earlier in summer, the albedo feedback is stronger meaning even more summer melt


Fact: 2010's melt has not been earlier, but late. So, albedo, etc ...

Serreze, April 2010:

In retrospect, the reactions to the 2007 melt were overstated. The lesson is that we must be more careful in not reading too much into one event

Your conclusion? Thinks are worse than we thoght? My new model says ...?

Sorry, but in my book when we change from "the north pole might melt out" (in 2008) to "the reactions to the 2007 melt were overstated", then things are not worse than we thought.

Trends.

And the decadal trend measured by the satellites does not provide any evidence that the trend is overestimated by the IPCC

So then? New models to check the old ones? Waiting 50 years to test them? Really interesting.

P Gosselin said...

One can say a lot about Kary Mullis. He's eccentric. I selected that video because of his views on the scientific approach. I think he's right about it. Of course others may wish to cherry-pick quirks and dump on him - it's their right to do so, I suppose.

Marco said...

@Plazamoyua:

The IPCC AR4 predicted the ice-free arctic in the late 21st century based on models. These models are now found to *underestimate* the ice melt, contrary to your claim (without providing any evidence, I might add) that the IPCC *overestimated* the ice melt. The new models have taken the *observed* melt into account, and thus find a much faster melting.

Serreze put it *much* earlier than 2035, so using him as any evidence for the IPCC supposedly incorrectly predicting an ice-free arctic (notable, that'll be sea ice) is a strawman.

Regarding current ice conditions:
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/
(oh, and April is not summer).

I'm also still waiting for your *evidence* that the IPCC overestimated the trend. Just claiming it does and then say "the satellites" is not evidence.

Marco said...

@P Gosselin:
His way of looking at the scientific approach is what led him to the beliefs that HIV does not cause AIDS, that CFCs do nothing with the ozone layer, that extraterrestials exist, and that astrology is real.

Much of his claims are due to very poor research by Mullis. For example, Mullis linked the whole ozone breakdown issue to the patent on freon expiring (look, another conspiracy theory!). Too bad that patent already ran out at the very latest in the 1950s...It is extremely easy to find that freon was already used in the 1930s, so Mullis could easily have found that his claims are complete nonsense (before actually making them).

In short: Mullis is rather prone to fall for poor arguments that apparently fit his desired beliefs.

P Gosselin said...

Marco,
No matter what mistakes he MAY have made in his life - his message on the scientific approach is right on. Gotta be honest.

You sound like if Mullis said 2+2 = 4, you would dispute that just because you don't like him.
I like the guy, you don't, and we should just leave it at that.
(Recall that many patients are benefitting immensely today because of his work and kooky ideas).

P Gosselin said...

I must say brainstorming is not common in Germany. Often in other cultures people brainstorm and blurb out any idea that comes out. Naturally most ideas may be kooky and off the wall. But eventually something worthwhile comes out. Perhaps this is how Mullis is.
In Germany, there's always the constant surveillance on what is said, and the pressure to say only "intelligent" things. Watch what you say!
Reminds me of that Supertramp song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNgrbjg8jqE
I guess that's my social comment for the day.

Marco said...

@P Gosselin:

No, his comments on the scientific method are *not* right on. He makes a mockery of the scientific method by demanding evidence, but himself rejecting any and all evidence that does not fit with his own preconceived ideas. And we're talking about a LOT of evidence. He's doing exactly the same as so many GW-'skeptics': point to one or two papers, reject the 100 others.

plazamoyua said...

Ok, Marco, take a look at this:

http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/seaice.anomaly.arctic.png

And tell me. IPCC's models where underestimating the future sea ice loss, in 2007. I supose they knew the data up to 2007. And at the and of 2009, according to you, they -or someome- realized the underestimation. Are you serious? Have you forgotten the department of just weather, not climate?

Trends.

-Models: 0,2ºC / decade
-Satellites: 0,13ºC / decade.

No overestimation. Good. I agree. Whatever.

Marco said...

@plazamoyua:
You may want to read the information on the NSIDC website:
http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/

We're talking first-year ice, which *will* disappear during the summer melt. And the proportion of first-year ice is still increasing.

Regarding temperature: please indicate to which "models" you are referring. Also, please explain why you only report the trend for UAH, not for RSS (which is 0.156/decade).

plazamoyua said...

Ah, we are discussing the difference between 0.13 - 0.15

Models? Which models do you have predicting substancially less than 0.2C / decade?

Ice:

http://arctic-roos.org/observations/satellite-data/sea-ice/total-icearea-from-1978-2007

Percentage change / decade: -4,688%

What was the percentage change estimated by the "ancient" IPCC models (2007). I think I remember -5,5%, but I may be wrong.

Any case, you will always find a model / proyection, whatever, to suit your believe. But here the case is a memorandum telling that everything is saying "worse than we thought", when in fact you can find a lot of "better than we thought", if you only look. What about last years flight finding the arctic ice quite thicker than "we thought"? Nothing, it doesn't exist. What about the finding of an unexpected percentage of the heating due to stratospheric water vapor? Nada, it doesn't exist. And so and so on.

So you are right. Be happy.

Cheers.

Marco said...

@plazamoyua:

It is a matter of which scenario you choose to see what the estimated rise will be. And you cannot use the current observations to criticise the forecast.

Re the satellites: the difference is relevant, as the 0.156 comes much closer to the surface-based measurements.

The IPCC models actually forecast about a 4.3% decline. And before you start to point to a very similar number in your link: that 4.3% refers to *end of summer extent*. In other words, it is still melting faster than forecast.

Regarding thickness: that were local measurements on a few spots already known to be multi-year ice.