Saturday, December 12, 2015

part 6 - sock-puppet to Dave: "Absolutely nothing unusual about temp rise in over 120 years"

That debate between AL and Dave kept on going, though it might be winding down now. I skipped some earlier posts by Dave to focus on his most recent remarks, then decided I'd better start with AL's typical contrarian assault, then I'll follow up with Dave's response in my next post.

A reminder - this comes from the comments thread begun by MarathonS Feb 22, 2014 on the dubious YouTube video The PseudoScience of CO2 Based Climate where yet another coddled "old white guy" who knows nothing of climate science, feeds his audience what they want to hear.

Note - Dave and AL's words are unchanged, though I have corrected some minor typos - I figured AL knows it all already, so I didn't touch his words.  I also made formatting changes including some highlights and of course I've also interjected a few comments and more links to educational sources.

It's difficult keeping the participants in this virtual dialogue separate, please bear with me - Dave's words are in Arial font, AL's comments are in purple, my additions are light green highlighted.
AL - 12/10/2015 -11:53 AM to Dave Smith 

So to answer it - there isn't one (optimal CO2 level). 

Of course there is. Every ecosystem has an optimal level for that particular ecosystem, just because you don’t know what that level is doesn’t mean there isn’t one. But since you now have admitted that you don’t know what that level is, why are you then promoting a certain level of CO2 when you lack that knowledge?

You quoted me a paper that stated that they are unprecented - Ljungqvist, F. C., et al. "Northern Hemisphere temperature patterns in the last 12 centuries." Climate of the Past 8.1 (2012): 227-249. How can you use references the state one thing and then claim as fact the opposite?
Hmmm, tough to figure out what AL is talking about.  
Here's a couple lines from the abstract:

"... The positive Northern Hemisphere temperature change from the 19th to the 20th century is clearly the largest between any two consecutive centuries in the past 12 centuries. These results remain robust even after removing a significant number of proxies in various tests of robustness showing that the choice of proxies has no particular influence on the overall conclusions of this study."

What part of the climate has always been changing have you missed? Is it so impossible for you to grasp that there has always been changes in climate, and it always will. Since much larger changes has occurred in the past several times, even in the recent past, there is absolutely nothing unusual about a 0,5 - 1 C° temperature rise in over 120 years. Nor are the drop in temperature from for example MWP to LIA. Are you really that uninformed so you believe the climate you happened to have experienced in your lifetime is some kind of norm for our planet?
Here's another sure sign of the disingenuous contrarian at work, beyond misrepresenting the known science,
they rather detour into belittling their 'opponent' and leaving the object of information exchange in the dust.

I do appreciate most of us slip in that regard, however there is a big difference between an exasperated ejaculation and repetitively used debate tactic to take the conversation away from the facts of the matter.

”humans have being generating increased CO2 levels way before 1880.”

Yes of course since even termites generates CO2, so does humans just by breathing. About 2.2 Gt / year actually. But since you don’t believe in proxies as a reliable way to look at the climate history, I deliberately selected the start of the period from when we got thermometers. 

"The rate of the temperature increase has actually slowed down since we started emit CO2 at any volumes" - a) can you put some dates on these. When do claim that we started to emit CO2 at any volumes? from what time previously do you measure the trend rate of temperature 

Yes I can and will, when you start to give sources about your claims, for instance the one about why peoples opinions hav changed about CAGW. 
Then comes the hide and seek with information, rather than sticking to explaining the point one is trying to champion in a forthright manner.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
As for this bizarre mocking the notion of CAGW I've looked at that in previous posts:

"CAGW. Ask a simple question, get a revealing answer. 
Dodging the issue."

"Possessed by the idea of catastrophic climate change?"

b) global temperature is not a linear function with CO2 concentration.

No it’s almost logarithmic decremental, which means it get increasingly more difficult to change the temperature 1 C° with the level of CO2 added to the system. And as it seems now, even more so in the atmosphere.

"Logarithmic decremental"!?  Where did that come from?

Please explain how a logarithmic decremental is used in understanding GHG radiative properties.

Or can you explain what an "underdamped linear oscillator" is and what it has to do with the behavior of greenhouse gases? 

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 
Me thinks you're blowing smoke up my trousers.  
If you wanted to learn about greenhouse gases, it takes serious study.  

American Chemical Society  Explains The Properties of a Greenhouse Gas.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
1.0 Introduction to the greenhouse effect: Radiative Forcing
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
IPCC, chapter 2 -Radiative Forcing of Climate

”the usual start date for the global warming hiatus is 1998, so that isn't 19 years.”

No, you are correct. The latest number on the hiatus is 18 years and 9 months. 
Pssst, AL, you're thinking in terms of an incomplete intellectual model of our planet. 
On our real physical Earth there is/was no "global warming" hiatus! 

Please consider the situation, it’s our planet’s atmospheric insulation doing the heavy lifting on this global warming thing.

The troposphere (Earth’s lowest layer of atmosphere) is huge and complex; heat is absorbed and moved around in myriad ways so it’s no surprise that scientists don’t have a perfect inventory of where every joule of heat is going. 

What matters is how atmospheric greenhouse gases are retaining heat, and that process scientists do understand—thoroughly. It doesn’t turn on and off; the “global warming hiatus” was an illusion from day one.

The question everyone should have been asking was: “Where did the surface heat go?” The answer turns out to be a combination of oceans and difficulties in deducing the “average” global surface temperature in the first place. (...)
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
The 'pause' in global warming is not even a thing

And even then surface temperatures continue to rise, the heat budget continues to worsen, and the oceans (which store most of the heat) continue to rise. 

But the problem with higher surface temperatures is that it’s not at the surface green house effects shows up, it shows up higher up in the atmosphere first, and builds a hot spot there and that has since long been observed both with weather balloons and satellite measurements to be false. Surface heating alone has other factors amongst other variations in cloud cover. Even the assumption that the earth should emit less heat with more CO2 has been proven wrong, it is now measured that with more incoming radiation, the more heat the earth emits. And isn’t it funny when thermometer networks that are place away from urban areas shows less of a temperature increase at the surface?

”There was a 30 year hiatus from 1945 to 1975, which was flat. The 16 years since 1998 is not a significant amount of time.”

Oh, really? Where did you dream up that hiatus? 
Here take a look:’s-surface-temperature-stop-rising-past-decade
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Climate Change 2001 Assessment
  • 1.1 Has the world warmed?
  • 1.1.1 Has the earth surface temperature increased?
  • 1.1.2 Has the atmosphere temperature increased?
  • 1.1.3 Have the snow cover and ice extent decreased?
  • 1.1.4 Have sea level and ocean heat content increased?
  • 1.2 What other climate changes have been observed?
  • 1.3 What aspects of our climate have NOT changed?
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

”we should be heading into an ice age now, not coming out of one.”

And where would we be right now on a temperature curve if we are about to head into an ice age? At the peak maybe? No? And where have we come from in the last 10 000 years or so…hmmm….out from an ice age maybe? Seriously?
Seriously what?  

You toss out a bunch of incoherent questions all intended to continue distracting from the question of how modern fossil fuels burning impacts our atmosphere.  You've adopted the fabricated impossible expectations created by PR firms.  All to justify ignore all that is well understood.

Scientists continue studying paleoclimate and continue refining the details of the data and understanding.  The question facing humanity is learning to understanding how the significant changes we've made to our atmosphere's ability to retain heat impacts our climate system.

Also, learning to appreciate how much we depend on the climate driven weather patterns we've known these centuries would help a great deal.

”I said it cannot be proved. No scientific theory can be proved.”

Bullshit. They are proven by empirical observations, and as we all know IPCC’s and Al Gore’s theories and claims of what would have happened because of those theories have already been proven wrong. And we all know what the scientific method says about that scenario, don’t we? Scrap your theory and start over.

Al Gore's Theories? Pray tell what would Gore's Theory be?
"We all"  Who would that be?
As for empirical observations - Why doesn't any of this impress you?

Increased hydrological cycle leading to increased torrential rainfall events.

An advanced statistical analysis of rainfall data from the years 1901 to 2010 derived from thousands of weather stations around the globe shows that over 1980-2010 there were 12 percent (12 percent globally - but 56% in South East Asia, in Europe 31%, in the central US 24%) more of these events than expected in a stationary climate, a scenario without global warming. "Due to the upward trend, the worldwide increase of record-breaking daily rainfall events in the very last year of the studied period reaches even 26 percent"..."
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Global warming: Rapid rise in Arctic temperatures linked to changes in extreme weather and global wind patterns
Steve Connor - Monday 11, August 2014
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Global Warming Kicks Up Record Pacific Trade Winds
AUG 3, 2014
The study:

”I never ever once said that that is something that I wanted.” 

Then you don’t know what you are talking about, since you have stated that it’s better to act then to do nothing and since you are agreeing with IPCC on pretty much anything they claim or say, you also agree to their plan about spending trillions of dollars on some unproven political driven agenda.

Here we get to the core of our problem, people like this AL and those that contrive this nonsense he sincerely believe simply can't see anything past their immediate political interests.  

This isn't about politics!  It's about what we are doing to our planet.
What we do about it depend on politics but they are two distinct. 
”And I have already gone through explaining that any non-decision is really a decision, and there is no way to avoid that uncertainty, and in effect the money will have to be decided upon one way or another.”

A non-decision for what? That theory again that there is no proof for? Are you always worried about going around and making ”non-decitions” in your life? Your reasoning is so absurd it’s almost funny. What planet are you from?

”no I don't. You seem too confused with the word proof.”

Ah, so all your debating is done with no proof that you’r not trying to find to support your claims. I see why your confused in this matter.
Here's another favorite tactic, refusing to try to understand what your debate 'opponent' is trying to explain.  Instead twisting and misrepresenting your opponent in order to gain advantage.  

It's an example of the "lawyerly/political debate" where winning is all that matters.  As opposed to the serious constructive debate of scientists where better understanding is what matters.
"And you want to spend trillions to keep them down" - no I don't
Yes you do, since you agree with IPCC and that’s their plan.
Another example of forcing words into his opponents mouth.

AL willfully ignores that we live in a world where those sort of "proofs" are impossible.  We can verify the accuracy of our data, we can increase the amount of data, but in the end we need to decide what to do with it.  

It works the same way in every other human arena - you know what they say: life offers no guarantees.  So we do the best we can with what we have.
"what is the earth's optimum levels of CO2 and the optimum temperature?" - there isn't one.

Yes there is. Every ecological system has an optimum level where life and it’s processes in that system can thrive as much as possible. Just because you for some strange reason have decided that just this state of the planet you have experienced is something we should strive to maintain is the right one, obviously doesn’t mean it is so. That is just a huge misconception among greenies and warmists - they just go to extremes to maintain there own habitat and nothing else matters. 

"But that is the crux of the matter, isn't it? You or anyone else can't prove it, and you can't even demonstrate it since everything about that has been tried to demonstrate the theory has fallen laughingly short." 
I think it's more a matter learning to understand the reality you are living within and learning how to adapt and deal with that.

”- Again, no-one can prove it. But it can and has been demonstrated.” 

No, it hasn’t. A theory has been put forward that comes from the 70’s, originally as a way to combat the coming ice age some where screaming about back then. As a mean to demonstrate this theory IPCC tried to model what would happen according to their theory, and they have failed miserably. Both with temperatures, ocean rise, hurricanes, storms, ice mass, climate refuges and all other nonsense they have come up with.
Here AL's playing mystical.  What theory was put forward in the 70's?
No details, just another cheap put-down.

As for the 70's, it experienced an exponential increase in climate science awareness and Earth observation abilities.  Many independent threads of evidence came together to weave a basic understanding of our climate system and to investigate alternative explanations.

There was a mid century leveling off of surface temperatures.
It turned out to be related to our atmosphere's increasing air pollution and aerosol concentrations, which in turn reflected a fraction of incoming solar energy and thus introducing a short term surface cooling - since aerosols wash out of the atmosphere in months and years - as opposed to CO2 concentrations which last for hundreds of years and more.  

Hypothetically if we had continued increasing our aerosol concentrations, we could have initiated a shift toward another mini ice age.  Of course, the media had a field day with the notion, often using generous writes license to embellish the story.  

When air pollution got to be too much for society and clean air standards started appearing throughout the world, the pace of warming increased again.  Where's the theory AL? 

Today "the science" is regularly pilloried for what the under-informed non-scientists wrote to sell copy! 

”In terms of demonstrating it, all of the science used in the IPCC reports is in journal articles that have consistently demonstrated the accuracy of that science.”

No, they have not. You can take any one of those articles they have produced, and it’s a piece of cake to find 10-20 scientific papers that in a scientific manner contradicts them. And papers written by scientists with 30-40 years in their field, and just for fun, even some of the same scientists that have written or co-written the very same articles in the IPCC's bible of yours.

No attempt to present any definite point, cheap trash-talk is the best AL can do.
For those curious about the real IPCC here's a worthwhile section to look at.

2. Evaluation of IPCC's assessment process

Sources of data and literature
"... An analysis of the 14,000 references cited in the Third Assessment Report found that peer-reviewed journal articles comprised 84 percent of references in Working Group I, but comprised only 59 percent of references in Working Group II and 36 percent of references in Working Group III (Bjurström and Polk, 2010).
In fact, information that is relevant and appropriate for inclusion in IPCC assessments often appears in the so-called ‘gray literature,’ which includes technical reports, working papers, presentations and conference proceedings, fact sheets, bulletins, statistics, observational data sets, and model output produced by government agencies, international organiza- tions, universities, research centers, nongovernmental organizations, corporations, professional societies, and other groups. The extent to which such information has been peer-reviewed varies a great deal, as does its quality. ..."

”You haven't, even once, discussed any of the science behind the theory, so I don't know how you can claim that it has fallen laughingly short.”

Then you either have been asleep not just during this discussion, but in the last 19 years. Sorry, I meant 18 year and 9 months. 

The clearest evidence is the measurable heat budgets, and relative heatings of the atmospheric layers. These can only be caused by the effect of a greenhouse gas, and the effect is as predicted by the theory of CO2 warming.

Give me some proof of these opinions of yours. 

"Until you can prove that a) the rises in CO2 is actually affecting the temperature in a catastrophic fashion, and b) non-catastrophic rise in CO2 levels will result in greater costs for society, then you have no argument about spending trillions of dollars, have you?" - there is always an argument. I've been through this before. Businesses and governments constantly have to make decisions on the basis of imperfect information, this is no different. 
For example, if you are in business and can't anticipate potential changes in the market, technological changes, fashion changes, or new competition then you will quickly be out of business. Investing in potentials that have no guarantee of reality is called hedging. A personal form of it is insurance. Life is full of uncertainties.”

Here you are totally out of reality in your reasoning. Your analogy should instead be that a company makes a analysis and prediction about a strategic move on the market, but then when the real world proves the analysis wrong they still go ahead and makes that investment, just in case. Specially when that strategic move is made just to save themselves from a certain situation that has come up in the market that they have imagined will be catastrophic for them, even though here are historical evidence that shows that this has happened before and it wasn’t catastrophic back then. 
And further more, they go ahead and do this move even though it has been proven that what ever they do, it won’t make a difference. You do realize that absolutely nothing we do with our tiny economic means impacts the global temperature more that a few hundreds of a degree, right?
"Tiny Economic means" !?
Here is another example of AL's inability to see past his political interests.  
To say that human's impact on the planet that sustains us is tiny, beggars belief.
Of course those who ignore the information remain clueless.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Landsat images over time - Earth Outreach 

Amazon deforestation animation in Google Earth

~ ~ ~ 
Las Vegas Urban Expansion: Timelapse

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
 Forest Loss in Riau, Indonesia, 2000-2012 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
6 Striking Aerial Images Show How Deforestation Has Altered the Earth
Stefanie Spear | January 28, 2015
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~

The Nine Planetary Boundaries

Stratospheric ozone depletion
Loss of biosphere integrity (biodiversity loss and extinctions)
Chemical pollution and the release of novel entities
Climate Change
Ocean acidification
Freshwater consumption and the global hydrological cycle
Land system change
Nitrogen and phosphorus flows to the biosphere and oceans
Atmospheric aerosol loading
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Six Ways Human Activity Is Changing the Planet

Jared Green -  April 6, 2010

Carbon Dioxide Emissions 
Draining Rivers
Black Carbon
Industrial Agriculture
Reef Destruction
Plastic Production
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 
Considering our Human Footprint upon our Earth
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
The Triple Whopper Environmental Impact of Global Meat Production
"Some 40% of the world’s land surface is used for the purposes of keeping all 7 billion of us fed"
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
 AL, does any of that make an impression on you?
"I said that the variability in natural CO2 emissions up or down is far greater than the human CO2 emissions. " - you are flat out lying now. This is an example of the statements you have been making 'The point is this: Humans emissions are tiny compared to what nature produce in CO2 each year'. 

And you are saying that that is a lie? Then you’re the lier.
The natural background CO2 flux is vast indeed.  
There is a massive seasonal variation in that natural flux, 
but it's still the human contributions that's driving the increase in concentration.

For instance, compare human contributions and volcanic contributions
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
What is the Carbon Cycle? What is the science behind it?
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
The Carbon Cycle
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Carbon and the Global Carbon Cycle
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Which produces more CO2, volcanic or human activity?

Our studies show that globally, volcanoes on land and under the sea release a total of about 200 million tonnes of CO2 annually.

This seems like a huge amount of CO2, but a visit to the U.S. Department of Energy's Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC) website ( helps anyone armed with a handheld calculator and a high school chemistry text put the volcanic CO2 tally into perspective. 

Because while 200 million tonnes of CO2 is large, the global fossil fuel CO2 emissions for 2003 tipped the scales at 26.8 billion tonnes. Thus, not only does volcanic CO2 not dwarf that of human activity, it actually comprises less than 1 percent of that value.

All of them have been consistent with that statement and no mention was made of the rate of a change of natural CO2 emissions. And even now you still can't get it right, it is not the magnitude of the variations that is relevant, it is the rate of those changes.

You’re totally delirious now. What part of that the natural fluctuations of natural CO2 emissions over time is much greater that anything we have contributed is it you don’t understand? 
More derogatory labels.
Again, lacking all supporting explanation or evidence.

"Here you have an overview of different sources of human emitted CO2 from 2010. It's around 9 Gt. " - That's the mass of carbon, not CO2. Multiply by 44/12 to get mass of CO2, which is 33 Gt.

No it isn’t. Then the graph isn’t working for you since you can choose ”Preferred Units” and there CO2 as an option. And if you had bothered to download the file it clearly states CO2. And actually those 33 Gt you love to state has proven to be seriously wrong. You have to tala away at least 10% and that’s just for the erros made about China. "There is huge, even greater uncertainty for India and Indonesia - this is a starting point for the global south."  {so what?  what difference does that detail make?}

isn’t it funny that the ”errors” we find out about that the IPCC and other behind this agenda always are errors that would have been to their benefit if it hadn’t been revealed? 
Notice AL can't for a moment imagine this an honest and actually quite a trivial one - but he's ready to hang the IPCC based on a head full of bad information based on his totally hostile perception, rather than any serious understanding based on good-faith objective investigation.

Still, no supporting explanation or evidence.  
But then, if AL looked into it he'd find his supposition falling apart in a hurry.

”and now you go back to referring to the absolute magnitudes again. Didn't we just agree that that is irrelevant and the variation is what is important (actually the rate of change)?”

Jesus crist are you totally daft now? You don’t realize that both these things can be discussed as a measure of the tiny amount humans emit compared to nature? No wonder more and more people don’t believe the nonsense you promote when you come up with ludicrous statements like this. 
More derogatory labels.
Again lacking all supporting explanation or evidence.
"Well, your not to judge what I understand or not since you yourself beliefs in an unproven theory that has been proven wrong by mere observations" - then in all of the examples of you providing references in order to support what you claim where am I wrong in even one of them in demonstrating that it doesn't support your claim and that I am misinterpreting the paper.”

That doesn’t even make any sense. 
I hope Dave doesn't mind me cleaning up his paragraph a little:
"Well, you're not to judge what I understand or not since you yourself believe in an unproven theory that has been proven wrong by mere observations" - then in all of the examples of you providing references in order to support what you claim - where am I wrong in even one of them in demonstrating that it doesn't support your claim and that I am misinterpreting the paper.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 
I think what he means, is that you have made no serious effort to explain what evidence supports your various claims.  

Actually you won't even honestly define your claims instead trivializing the science and injecting all sorts of personal opinions, laced with name-calling.  

That is not the scientists' or the serious students' way

" Just because you can't or wont take in data that refutes your unproven religion doesn't mean they don't state what they state. " - ok, so which ones did I get wrong and why?

Well, you take a pick. I would say all of them.

”- then prove me wrong. Provide some comment on any of your supporting literature that demonstrates that you actually have read any of them.”

Are you serious? You want me to prove that I have read papers I’m pointing you to in the first place, and the reason I point you to them is that they contain facts that I have told you here? You can’t be real :P
Are you serious?  
Dave is trying to get you to explain yourself using some of these reports.  You see that way we have something definite to look at and discuss rather than all this useless arm-waving.
Actually I’m almost certain you are trolling now, so I leave you with that. 
Here we have the final, oh so predicable, Coup de gras as thee 'debate opponent' struts off as self-certain, uncurious and ill-informed as ever, off to infect some other audience with ill-considered nonsense.

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