Friday, June 27, 2014

The 'Trenberth travesty' Travesty - Contemplating Contrarians #3

{edited 7/27/14 morning}

Being part-time retired means I'm part time working, and tis the season, calls keep coming in so I don't have near the time I need to put together a decent post.  Though I have managed to continue the "interesting" conversation with "krischel" over at  I keep wanting to report on it, but it piles on too fast to do it justice.  Still, this evening I do want to share the results of this lasted dog-bone I fetched:
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
 krischel posted: June 24, 2014 at 18:26
"CC asks: “Do you even understand what Trenberth’s Travesty was all about?”
"K responds: "Yes, I do. It was about hiding uncertainty from the public, rather than being openly honest about it."
~ ~ ~ 
K linked me to Judith Curry's blog post of 3/29/2013 "Has Trenberth found the missing heat"

That in turn led me to Curry's, "Where's the "missing" heat? 1/7/2011 - Then on to a Roy Spencer's article of April 21, 2010: 
"The problem is that the oceans have not been warming in response to this imbalance.  
Trenberth and Fasullo seem to lean toward the possibility that this heat is “missing” somewhere, maybe temporarily trapped in the deep ocean. 
Roger Pielke, Sr., has voiced his opinion that the heat could not have magically avoided the ocean temperature sensors, both in space and floating around the world’s oceans, which monitor ocean surface and upper layer temperatures."

Yet, from the information within the links I share, you can see Spencer has no foundation for claiming "oceans have not been warming…"  Why?  Because we are still waiting on the data from the all important Antarctic continental shelf.  Making their focus on <700m disingenuous.
 Not that physical facts have ever slowed down someone who actually believes they've figured out (and communicate) with the God of Creation and Time.

When I had enough of their word games and lack of substance, I moved on to articles that focused on the science and the observed physical facts, flawed as they maybe - where I could actually learn something about our planet's processes.

ATTP has done a very nice job of explaining the math and the details of Douglas and Knox (2013) and the claims being made based on that study.  

Roger Pielke Sr and Douglass & Knox
Posted on August 14, 2013 by And Then There's Physics

His closing paragraph sums it up:
"So, why am I writing this? Well, I know Roger Pielke Sr. is a professional climate scientist with a fantastic publication record and lots of experience. 
How, then, can he think this paper is an important much-needed assessment of the climate system? 
As far as I can tell, they not only ignore a big chunk of important data, their basic assumption and calculation is simply wrong. There’s a chance that I’ve misunderstood something so, if I have, feel free to tell me what and I’d be happy to be corrected. 
However, until such time, I certainly won’t be seriously considering an alternative to the AGU position statement from someone who thinks that Douglass & Knox is an important piece of work."
~ ~ ~
Sou has fun with the real ocean heat travesty: 
Anthony Watts takes on Kevin Trenberth and loses big time
~ ~ ~
Anthony Watts' Next Trick is to Disappear the Data - or Laughing at Pat Michaels
~ ~ ~
Then back to Pielke's April 16, 2010's "press release" where you can find some Pielke and Trenberth dialogue.
 ~ ~ ~

After that I found myself with the big guns at Real Climate who offered up another valuable climate science lesson in ocean warming.  For those who are interested in learning:
"What ocean heating reveals about global warming"
Stefan Rahmstorf @ 25 September 2013
I've barely had time to read the stuff, but not to describe it, so take a look yourself.  :- } 
~ ~ ~

Which took me right back to another article at where I couldn't help but make a comment, since I invested so much time in all this I want to share it here, though I've expanded on my original comment.
Ocean Heat Content: Can we monitor the transfer of heat through the top 700 metres?

citizenschallenge Says: 

I’m coming at this late. Ironically, this is about my 8th web-stop after running the Fetch Game with the latest dog-bone “krischel” tossed me – starting with the recommended Judith Curry link 3/29/13 “Has Trenberth Found the Missing Heat”  {tough, find it the old fashioned way}


Regarding ± ¶11: 
“Roger (140) says more or less the same, but arrives at a conclusion that is not shared by Gavin:

"if this transfer occurs in globs associated with mesoscale and larger ocean circulation features (as suggested in the ECMWF data), we should clearly see this movement of heat.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Seems to me the most dramatic downwelling would be occurring along the Antarctic continental shelf – yet the map doesn’t indicate much ARGO coverage down there.

Look at ( you can see where the most dramatic ocean down welling occurs, you know along the Antarctica continental shelf, there’s minimal ARGO coverage that far south – how can someone as smart as Roger miss that?
Still he feels comfortable ridiculing experts – I keep wondering: Why can’t Roger admit his argument is lacking a foundation until the Southern Ocean is more closely observed? 
Plus I've read about, {unfortunately can’t dig 'em up}, reports of studies regarding some major cyclical deep ocean currents around Antarctic experiencing major deviations from their historic patterns {Please, if that rings a bell – help me out on that one – I'd sure appreciate it.}   
Shouldn't those areas be understood before all inclusive claims are made?

In any event, how is it that in light of all this uncertainty, Roger can shift into the kinds of gross overstatements that have folks like krischel claiming Kevin Trenberth is an unscrupulous con??? 
It would be ridiculous, if not so malicious.


Worst is the word game being played by Pielke and McIntyre, Michaels, Watts, et al. 
So OK, we don’t have perfect monitoring of our planet, meaning we don’t know what every cubic and square foot of our planet is doing. Fine deal with it in a rational manner! . . .

But don't tell me the physics depends on the well known less than perfect observational instruments and coverage. 

I mean, consider the implication of this malicious “trenberth’s travesty Travesty” meme.
Look at it - the whole line of reasoning demands pretending that sound physics, (the physics that enables all sorts of modern marvels),... that this established physics of GHGs must be suspended - why? - because of our inadequate measuring instruments?

Either that or it’s denying the physical properties of greenhouse gases altogether.  There is no middle ground.  

It’s bizarre – so bizarre it can only be dreamt up by folks who have actually convinced themselves that they've achieved understanding of, and communication with, the God of Creation and Time. 
So they continue confusing and blustering… while the clock keeps ticking… while the impacts keep mounting… while our kids look around in confusion and fear.

So sad :- (
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
"K responds: "Yes, I do. It was about hiding uncertainty from the public, rather than being openly honest about it."

That's the problem - these "skeptics" refusal to become educated about what the what the Trenberths of the world are actually explaining.

I gotta wonder if K every spent any time listening to and trying to understanding the lessons Dr. Trenberth has shared?

Lecture title "Global Warming Coming Ready or Not"
Uploaded on Feb 14, 2008
Dr. Kevin Trenberth of the National Center for Atmospheric Research speaks on Climate Change as part of the University of Alabama's APSACC lecture series.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Kevin Trenberth: The Role of the Oceans in Climate

Uploaded on Apr 14, 2011
The Role of the Oceans in Climate
Kevin Trenberth: Senior Scientist and Head of the Climate Analysis Section
National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colorado.

This lecture is part of SFU's 2011 global warming seminar series "Global Warming: A Science Perspective".

Regardless of one's perspective the effects of global warming are a quantifiable set of environmental results. That is why the SFU Dean of Science Office invited some of the world's leading scientists to present results of their research in this six-part series of talks.

The series is designed to speak to a general audience of undergraduate and graduate students, faculty from across the Faculty of Science and the University and interested members of the public.
For more information, visit

No comments: