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Switch to Forum Live View Why do we say things are unprecedented?
7 years ago  ::  Mar 26, 2008 - 8:09PM #31
eadler
Posts: 4,449
[QUOTE=Bodean;385733]As noted by Spencer .. this won't be the first time that the "consensus" was wrong!  I think this extremely relevant, because there are two consensus.  One is that CO2 is driving climate, and is made up of the newbees.  The other is that there is no convincing evidence that CO2 is driving the climate, consisting of the older, mature, and better published scientists.



This is an untrue statement.  The readjustments brought the satellite data more in line with the surface data, but neither of the data sets are sufficient to attribute cause.



The man has many more years experience with weather than anyone at Realclimate.  What I find really interesting, is that his data support and build upon the hypothesis of another old hand .. Linzen.  The Iris Effect.

There's a common sense aspect to his reasoning that is just flat out missing at Realclimate.  CO2 is just part of the overall greenhouse effect, it does not function in isolation.  The overall greenhouse phenomenon has been in operation for Billions of years.  Within that Billions of years, it has dealt with massive releases of CO2 from the heating oceans (so massive that man's puny contribution doesn't even significantly register).  To think that it will discriminate between massive ocean releases and man's release is proposterous.

The PROBLEM with Climate Science is that cause is hard, if not down right impossible to attribute.  As Spencer noted, the AGW supporters are relying on a dishonest approach, in that they are demanding irrefutable proof regarding the natural system to "disprove" their theory of AGW ... even though their theory of AGW can't be proven because of the very same reasoning!  Consequently, they are saying prove us wrong with no data to prove they are right!  The skeptics can turn it around and say the exact same thing .... prove the natural variation is not contributing.  They can't .. simply because they don't have the data, or the understanding to do so.

Thus within all the editorializing for or against, it becomes a he said/he said scenario.  As I said, all the newbees are lining up behing AGW (in all likelyhood to get grant money) .. all the old guys who have already made a name for themselves, line up with the skeptics.

To this I quote from RealClimate:  "their ideas are behind the times".  The flip side of that is that their ideas are full of wisdom ... wisdom that is lacking in the AGW camp.[/QUOTE]

The "Iris effect" described by Lindzen is in dispute, based on other data and analysis by Bing Lin and his team:
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Study/Iris/iris2.html
Evidence Against the Iris Hypothesis
          Page 1Page 3
     

“The Iris Hypothesis is very exciting,” states Bing Lin, an atmospheric research scientist at NASA LaRC. “Everybody would like to see tropical clouds changing in response to surface warming and acting to stabilize the climate system. The problem is when we used measurements from the Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System (CERES) sensor, we got significantly different results (from Lindzen).”

Copies of the CERES sensor fly aboard both the NASA/NASDA Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), launched in November 1997, and NASA’s Terra satellite, launched in December 1999. Additional CERES sensors will be launched aboard Terra’s sister ship, Aqua, in the spring of 2002. CERES is the most advanced space-based sensor ever launched for measuring Earth’s radiant energy fluxes on a global scale.

Lin’s team took the measurements made every day by CERES over the tropical oceans and plugged them into the same model that Lindzen used. Instead of the strong negative feedback that Lindzen’s team found, Lin’s team found a weak positive feedback (Lin et al. 2001). That is, Lin found that clouds in the tropics do change in response to warmer sea surface temperatures, but that the cloud changes serve to slightly enhance warming at the surface. Specifically, whereas Lindzen’s experiment predicts that cirrus clouds change in extent to reduce warming at the surface by anywhere from 0.45 to 1.1 degrees, Lin’s experiment predicts that changes in the tropical clouds will help warm the surface by anywhere from 0.05 to 0.1 degree (Lin et al. 2001)...."

The above is an old article, and the Aqua satellite data is designed to get a better reading on what is happening. The effect that is being discussed is confined to the tropics. Until it is put into the models in some way, we won't have an idea of the significance of the impact of this data on the Global Climate Models.

I will ignore your imputation of dishonesty to the scientists who are proponents of the GHG theory.
Like the scientists who are skeptics, they may be right or wrong, but I believe they are honest and not misstating what they believe or what they have done.
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 26, 2008 - 9:47PM #32
Bodean
Posts: 9,706
[QUOTE=eadler;386032]
The above is an old article, and the Aqua satellite data is designed to get a better reading on what is happening. The effect that is being discussed is confined to the tropics. Until it is put into the models in some way, we won't have an idea of the significance of the impact of this data on the Global Climate Models.

I will ignore your imputation of dishonesty to the scientists who are proponents of the GHG theory.
Like the scientists who are skeptics, they may be right or wrong, but I believe they are honest and not misstating what they believe or what they have done.[/QUOTE]

That's an interesting article.  And I agree, it is older, and Spencer's data is from the Aqua Satellite.

But even as Spencer noted, we don't know enough about it to make any conclusions.  Spencer has made no conclusions, and won't make any conclusions, other than .. this is what we saw.

eadler .. I'm not trying to diss the climate modellers.  Heck .. all they can do is input the data and theory that is present in the literature.  But the fact that there is very little that is known, it's kinda hard to come up with any kind of truly accurate model.  We know alot about CO2 ... it's concentrations, it's absorbance, it's wave lengths, it's source, it's behavior in dissolved water, etc .. but we don't have data on, is how it behaves within the greater context of the Global Greenhouse System, and how the Greater Global System responds to changes in CO2 concentration.  This is an argument that Spencer and others have made on numerous occassions.  The models and theory are nice and all .. but we have no way of knowing if they are right or wrong, because we no so little about the natural system.  Just because they do a decent job at mapping past temperature, and did a pretty good job of predicting further warming within a Positive PDO phase, doesn't mean they are modelling what is really happening.

It is why I will repeat again.  We are in an extraordinary point in time.  The PDO is due to flip, if it hasn't already, the Sun is waning, and many of the natural forces are lining up to show us more about the natural system that will help us better understand it.  And what's even better, we have satellites up there nowadays, measuring all kinds of stuff ... stuff that was not measured prior to the 1979.  It will be scientifically breathtaking to see how well the proxy data, from which model data primarily were developed, actually line up with the real stuff.  We finally (hopefully) will be able to replace a bunch of set parameters with real moving data, and hopefully uncover many of the yet as known mechanisms by which the Climate Responds to certain natural stimuli.
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 26, 2008 - 9:55PM #33
PrHaug
Posts: 230
Wait a minute dr.eadler,

Explain this to me.  Dr. Spencer's paper was received in February 2007 and published in August 2007.  It is nominally supportive of Dr. Linzen's "Iris effect" theory.

Dr. Lin's paper is dated 2001, and calls Dr. Linzen's theory into question.

Why go with the research that is oldest?  Why not use the research and EMPIRICAL data that is most recent?
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 26, 2008 - 8:09PM #34
eadler
Posts: 4,449
[QUOTE=Bodean;385733]As noted by Spencer .. this won't be the first time that the "consensus" was wrong!  I think this extremely relevant, because there are two consensus.  One is that CO2 is driving climate, and is made up of the newbees.  The other is that there is no convincing evidence that CO2 is driving the climate, consisting of the older, mature, and better published scientists.



This is an untrue statement.  The readjustments brought the satellite data more in line with the surface data, but neither of the data sets are sufficient to attribute cause.



The man has many more years experience with weather than anyone at Realclimate.  What I find really interesting, is that his data support and build upon the hypothesis of another old hand .. Linzen.  The Iris Effect.

There's a common sense aspect to his reasoning that is just flat out missing at Realclimate.  CO2 is just part of the overall greenhouse effect, it does not function in isolation.  The overall greenhouse phenomenon has been in operation for Billions of years.  Within that Billions of years, it has dealt with massive releases of CO2 from the heating oceans (so massive that man's puny contribution doesn't even significantly register).  To think that it will discriminate between massive ocean releases and man's release is proposterous.

The PROBLEM with Climate Science is that cause is hard, if not down right impossible to attribute.  As Spencer noted, the AGW supporters are relying on a dishonest approach, in that they are demanding irrefutable proof regarding the natural system to "disprove" their theory of AGW ... even though their theory of AGW can't be proven because of the very same reasoning!  Consequently, they are saying prove us wrong with no data to prove they are right!  The skeptics can turn it around and say the exact same thing .... prove the natural variation is not contributing.  They can't .. simply because they don't have the data, or the understanding to do so.

Thus within all the editorializing for or against, it becomes a he said/he said scenario.  As I said, all the newbees are lining up behing AGW (in all likelyhood to get grant money) .. all the old guys who have already made a name for themselves, line up with the skeptics.

To this I quote from RealClimate:  "their ideas are behind the times".  The flip side of that is that their ideas are full of wisdom ... wisdom that is lacking in the AGW camp.[/QUOTE]

The "Iris effect" described by Lindzen is in dispute, based on other data and analysis by Bing Lin and his team:
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Study/Iris/iris2.html
Evidence Against the Iris Hypothesis
          Page 1Page 3
     

“The Iris Hypothesis is very exciting,” states Bing Lin, an atmospheric research scientist at NASA LaRC. “Everybody would like to see tropical clouds changing in response to surface warming and acting to stabilize the climate system. The problem is when we used measurements from the Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System (CERES) sensor, we got significantly different results (from Lindzen).”

Copies of the CERES sensor fly aboard both the NASA/NASDA Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), launched in November 1997, and NASA’s Terra satellite, launched in December 1999. Additional CERES sensors will be launched aboard Terra’s sister ship, Aqua, in the spring of 2002. CERES is the most advanced space-based sensor ever launched for measuring Earth’s radiant energy fluxes on a global scale.

Lin’s team took the measurements made every day by CERES over the tropical oceans and plugged them into the same model that Lindzen used. Instead of the strong negative feedback that Lindzen’s team found, Lin’s team found a weak positive feedback (Lin et al. 2001). That is, Lin found that clouds in the tropics do change in response to warmer sea surface temperatures, but that the cloud changes serve to slightly enhance warming at the surface. Specifically, whereas Lindzen’s experiment predicts that cirrus clouds change in extent to reduce warming at the surface by anywhere from 0.45 to 1.1 degrees, Lin’s experiment predicts that changes in the tropical clouds will help warm the surface by anywhere from 0.05 to 0.1 degree (Lin et al. 2001)...."

The above is an old article, and the Aqua satellite data is designed to get a better reading on what is happening. The effect that is being discussed is confined to the tropics. Until it is put into the models in some way, we won't have an idea of the significance of the impact of this data on the Global Climate Models.

I will ignore your imputation of dishonesty to the scientists who are proponents of the GHG theory.
Like the scientists who are skeptics, they may be right or wrong, but I believe they are honest and not misstating what they believe or what they have done.
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 26, 2008 - 9:47PM #35
Bodean
Posts: 9,706
[QUOTE=eadler;386032]
The above is an old article, and the Aqua satellite data is designed to get a better reading on what is happening. The effect that is being discussed is confined to the tropics. Until it is put into the models in some way, we won't have an idea of the significance of the impact of this data on the Global Climate Models.

I will ignore your imputation of dishonesty to the scientists who are proponents of the GHG theory.
Like the scientists who are skeptics, they may be right or wrong, but I believe they are honest and not misstating what they believe or what they have done.[/QUOTE]

That's an interesting article.  And I agree, it is older, and Spencer's data is from the Aqua Satellite.

But even as Spencer noted, we don't know enough about it to make any conclusions.  Spencer has made no conclusions, and won't make any conclusions, other than .. this is what we saw.

eadler .. I'm not trying to diss the climate modellers.  Heck .. all they can do is input the data and theory that is present in the literature.  But the fact that there is very little that is known, it's kinda hard to come up with any kind of truly accurate model.  We know alot about CO2 ... it's concentrations, it's absorbance, it's wave lengths, it's source, it's behavior in dissolved water, etc .. but we don't have data on, is how it behaves within the greater context of the Global Greenhouse System, and how the Greater Global System responds to changes in CO2 concentration.  This is an argument that Spencer and others have made on numerous occassions.  The models and theory are nice and all .. but we have no way of knowing if they are right or wrong, because we no so little about the natural system.  Just because they do a decent job at mapping past temperature, and did a pretty good job of predicting further warming within a Positive PDO phase, doesn't mean they are modelling what is really happening.

It is why I will repeat again.  We are in an extraordinary point in time.  The PDO is due to flip, if it hasn't already, the Sun is waning, and many of the natural forces are lining up to show us more about the natural system that will help us better understand it.  And what's even better, we have satellites up there nowadays, measuring all kinds of stuff ... stuff that was not measured prior to the 1979.  It will be scientifically breathtaking to see how well the proxy data, from which model data primarily were developed, actually line up with the real stuff.  We finally (hopefully) will be able to replace a bunch of set parameters with real moving data, and hopefully uncover many of the yet as known mechanisms by which the Climate Responds to certain natural stimuli.
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 26, 2008 - 9:55PM #36
PrHaug
Posts: 230
Wait a minute dr.eadler,

Explain this to me.  Dr. Spencer's paper was received in February 2007 and published in August 2007.  It is nominally supportive of Dr. Linzen's "Iris effect" theory.

Dr. Lin's paper is dated 2001, and calls Dr. Linzen's theory into question.

Why go with the research that is oldest?  Why not use the research and EMPIRICAL data that is most recent?
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2008 - 12:58PM #37
eadler
Posts: 4,449
[QUOTE=PrHaug;386268]Wait a minute dr.eadler,

Explain this to me.  Dr. Spencer's paper was received in February 2007 and published in August 2007.  It is nominally supportive of Dr. Lindzen's "Iris effect" theory.

Dr. Lin's paper is dated 2001, and calls Dr. Lindzen's theory into question.

Why go with the research that is oldest?  Why not use the research and EMPIRICAL data that is most recent?[/QUOTE]

Here is the abstract of the paper:

"[1] We explore the daily evolution of tropical intraseasonal
oscillations in satellite-observed tropospheric temperature,
precipitation, radiative fluxes, and cloud properties. The
warm/rainy phase of a composited average of fifteen
oscillations is accompanied by a net reduction in radiative
input into the ocean-atmosphere system, with longwave
heating anomalies transitioning to longwave cooling during
the rainy phase. The increase in longwave cooling is traced
to decreasing coverage by ice clouds, potentially supporting
Lindzen’s ‘‘infrared iris’’ hypothesis of climate stabilization.
These observations should be considered in the testing of
cloud parameterizations in climate models, which remain
sources of substantial uncertainty in global warming
prediction. Citation: Spencer, R. W., W. D. Braswell, J. R.
Christy, and J. Hnilo (2007), Cloud and radiation budget changes
associated with tropical intraseasonal oscillations, Geophys. Res.
Lett., 34, L15707, doi:10.1029/2007GL029698."

I am not quarreling with Spencer's data. He claims that the rainy phase of a tropical storm over the ocean is results in net cooling of the atmosphere.

I only point out that the significance that he ascribes to it is based on a belief. There seems a mystical belief that somehow, there is a weather god that stabilizes the world against an heating as a result of the imbalance due to excessive CO2.

The paleo temperature record shows that a warming world was accompanied by an increasing concentration of CO2, which we know will warm the earth somewhat, and is consistent with a positive feedback mechanism involving water vapor. In addition the moisture content of the air has been measured from space, and  while it did not maintain constant  relative humidity did, increase with increasing temperature, and hence created a positive feedback to the CO2. The tropical area that Spencer monitored is only a fraction of the sky and doesn't include land areas.
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2008 - 2:47PM #38
PrHaug
Posts: 230
dr.eadler,

Did you read the actual paper.  Bodean posted it quite a few posts ago.  In case you missed it:

http://www.weatherquestions.com/Spencer_07GRL.pdf

They conclude:

[21] The composite of fifteen strong intraseasonal oscillations
we examined revealed that enhanced radiativecooling
of the ocean-atmosphere system occurs during the
tropospheric warm phase of the oscillation. Our measured
sensitivity of total (SW + LW) cloud radiative forcing to
tropospheric temperature is -6.1 W m^-2 K^-1. During the
composite oscillation’s rainy, tropospheric warming phase,
the longwave flux anomalies unexpectedly transitioned
from warming to cooling, behavior which was traced to a
decrease in ice cloud coverage. This decrease in ice cloud
coverage is nominally supportive of Lindzen’s ‘‘infrared
iris’’ hypothesis. While the time scales addressed here are
short and not necessarily indicative of climate time scales, it
must be remembered that all moist convective adjustment
occurs on short time scales. Since these intraseasonal
oscillations represent a dominant mode of convective variability
in the tropical troposphere, their behavior should be
considered when testing the convective and cloud parameterizations
in climate models that are used to predict global
warming.
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2008 - 8:33PM #39
Bodean
Posts: 9,706
[QUOTE=eadler;387577]The paleo temperature record shows that a warming world was accompanied by an increasing concentration of CO2, which we know will warm the earth somewhat, and is consistent with a positive feedback mechanism involving water vapor.[/QUOTE]

This statement is completely unfounded.

The high resolution analysis of the Vostok ice core showed that CO2 significantly lagged temperature rise.  Hydrologic physics is sound in that warmer air holds more water, and that warming oceans lead to increased evaporation.

Another sound physico-chemical relationship is the inverse relationship between water and dissolved CO2.  It's been shown in the laboratory (in fact, I've done it myself), that as water warms, CO2 will outgas.  Couple this with the fact that cooler nutrient rich waters (La Nina) stimulate biological growth (increased CO2 uptake and incorporation), and warmer, nutrient poor water hinders biological growth (El Nino, decreased CO2 uptake), and you have a scenario where warmer water has a direct effect on ocean uptake of CO2 at the surface and at the same time, an increase in CO2 outgassing.

In essense, there is sound science pointing to the possibility that TEMPERATURE is driving both systems (more specifically, ocean temperatures), and that increased CO2 and increased Water Vapor are both just affects, not causes.  No matter what expert opinion you prefer, it is FACT that this "which came first, the chicken or the egg" scenario has not been solved.  NOT even the Models address this question, as the models are specifically designed to measure the equation from a chosen conclusion, specifically, they assume that CO2 is driving temperature, and they test and model the change in temperature from that perspective.  Nowhere will you find a GCM that is designed to address Temperature forcings on CO2 and Water Vapor! (as this is not the charter of the IPCC).

This is HUGE problem in Climate Science!!  NASA reported its initial data from the Aqua Satelite that confirmed the co-existence of increased temperature and water vapor.  But these data can not answer which caused what! (but of course, they editorialized that this supported the AGW theory).  In contrast, Spencer's study on precipitation systems went a tad deeper into the question than the initial NASA report, and looked at the temperature and water vapor, and cloud flux in time, as this observation reveals much more information about the mechanics of the system than does a simple correlation.
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 27, 2008 - 9:11PM #40
eadler
Posts: 4,449
PrHaug,
I did read the paper. I plucked the abstract from the first section of the paper. It summarizes the points that he made.
To say "nominally supportive" is different from saying that it proves the IRIS theory is correct in the overall global sense. It only means that the phenomenon he observed in the tropics seems consistent with it.
Remember that satellite measurements have always been controversial.

It is interesting that Roy Spencer, despite having had a career in Science is an advocate of Intelligent Design as opposed to Darwinian evolution as an explanation of the origin of species.
This lessens his credibility as a scientist in my view.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roy_Spencer
On the subject of Intelligent design, Spencer wrote in 2005, "Twenty years ago, as a PhD scientist, I intensely studied the evolution versus intelligent design controversy for about two years. And finally, despite my previous acceptance of evolutionary theory as 'fact,' I came to the realization that intelligent design, as a theory of origins, is no more religious, and no less scientific, than evolutionism. . . . In the scientific community, I am not alone. There are many fine books out there on the subject. Curiously, most of the books are written by scientists who lost faith in evolution as adults, after they learned how to apply the analytical tools they were taught in college." [3]

I recently read an interesting analogy regarding skeptics.
If you were about to take off in an airplane, and 25 mechanics said the plane was not safe and advised you not to board, and one mechanic said it was OK, what would you do?
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