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Cheers - AE

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Merry Christmas, Warble Gloaming is Over.

Probably time for a new scare since the current one seems to be staggering theatrically from one side of the stage to the other and back again.
World may not be warming, say scientists.
The Sunday Times, ladies and gentlemen. A publication not known for it's scepticism on the topic of climate whinge in recent years.
The United Nations climate panel faces a new challenge with scientists casting doubt on its claim that global temperatures are rising inexorably because of human pollution.

In its last assessment the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said the evidence that the world was warming was “unequivocal”.

It warned that greenhouse gases had already heated the world by 0.7C and that there could be 5C-6C more warming by 2100, with devastating impacts on humanity and wildlife. However, new research, including work by British scientists, is casting doubt on such claims. Some even suggest the world may not be warming much at all.
Careful now or Big Eco are going to be really pissed off. You won't be selling Greenpeace memberships and Windy Miller's electricity if you carry on like this.
“The temperature records cannot be relied on as indicators of global change,” said John Christy, professor of atmospheric science at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, a former lead author on the IPCC.

The doubts of Christy and a number of other researchers focus on the thousands of weather stations around the world, which have been used to collect temperature data over the past 150 years.

These stations, they believe, have been seriously compromised by factors such as urbanisation, changes in land use and, in many cases, being moved from site to site.

Christy has published research papers looking at these effects in three different regions: east Africa, and the American states of California and Alabama.

“The story is the same for each one,” he said. “The popular data sets show a lot of warming but the apparent temperature rise was actually caused by local factors affecting the weather stations, such as land development.”
And of course this is precisely the sort of thing highlighted by the late John Daly (see the Environmental Errors section), and more recently by Anthony Watts of WUWT and his project which found that the sort of thing described by John Daly in Tasmania nearly ten years ago is far from unique in the US network - supposedly the most reliable of anywhere in the world. Historically the Yanks have had the time, cash and manpower to maintain stations properly, and yet the information that Anthony Watts has collected suggests that 90% of them have local factors that casts doubt on their reliability. As the Times reports
His study, which has not been peer reviewed, is illustrated with photographs of weather stations in locations where their readings are distorted by heat-generating equipment.

Some are next to air- conditioning units or are on waste treatment plants. One of the most infamous shows a weather station next to a waste incinerator.

Watts has also found examples overseas, such as the weather station at Rome airport, which catches the hot exhaust fumes emitted by taxiing jets.

In Britain, a weather station at Manchester airport was built when the surrounding land was mainly fields but is now surrounded by heat-generating buildings.
There's one in central Melbourne as well, just on the northeast corner of the CBD. I've been meaning to check to see if it's one of the ones whose data ends up in the various estimates of global temperature.

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As I say, I don't know if they are used or if they're just there for local meteorological work. But if you want to see even worse shockers that are used then go along to and browse through the pictures. I used to do it regularly but after a while the effect wore off and I just went 'tut, another one next to a furnace'.

Worse still the enviro journals look like they're starting to lean towards scepticism, which is only fair since that's supposed to be the fucking default position of science anyway.
Terry Mills, professor of applied statistics and econometrics at Loughborough University, looked at the same data as the IPCC. He found that the warming trend it reported over the past 30 years or so was just as likely to be due to random fluctuations as to the impacts of greenhouse gases. Mills’s findings are to be published in Climatic Change, an environmental journal.

“The earth has gone through warming spells like these at least twice before in the last 1,000 years,” he said.
But balance, people, balance.
Kevin Trenberth, a lead author of the chapter of the IPCC report that deals with the observed temperature changes, said he accepted there were problems with the global thermometer record but these had been accounted for in the final report.
You've checked all 1200+ stations in the US and however many thousand throughout the rest of the world, assessed all the factors unique to each site and calculated the adjustments needed for each and every one, have you? Bullshit. Of course you haven't - if you have Watts' project would have been unnecessary and he could have found something else to do. No, what you've probably done is lumped them together in groups and applied various correction factors without knowing accurately the site conditions of each, and we already know that the wrong corrections are used because sites get incorrectly classified. Odd that it always seems to be in a way which exaggerates warming, but that could be a coincidence.

The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts has recently issued a new set of global temperature readings covering the past 30 years, with thermometer readings augmented by satellite data.

Dr Vicky Pope, head of climate change advice at the Met Office, said: “This new set of data confirms the trend towards rising global temperatures and suggest that, if anything, the world is warming even more quickly than we had thought.”
Vicks, the credibility of the Met Orifice and it's predictions don't lead to a lot of faith about your data gathering. Why augment possibly corrupted surface readings by satellite rather than just go on the satellites alone? Correct me if I'm wrong but if your data is contaminated then it's fucking contaminated. It might give you the result you expect but if so you may have forgotten that science isn't supposed to work towards a predetermined conclusion.

But what's really interesting to me is the change in reporting style. Normally any article about warble gloaming is packed with all the scary stuff about seas rising and drowning buildings and Roland Emmerlich movies becoming real, with the so-called 'balance' bit coming near the end where a sceptic is given a paragraph or two before being slapped down by a climate whinge mouthpiece. This article was almost the other way round.

The beginning of a paradigm shift perhaps? Time to start worrying about what we're going to have to start worrying about next.

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