Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Impossible Odds of Warming Being Random

In my post yesterday on the April State of the Climate report from NOAA, there was a statement that caught my attention. They said, "nine of the ten warmest 12-month periods have occurred within the past two years."

Whoa! What are the odds of that? Well, it turns out, we can figure that out and have actually done so before. I wrote a post in January about how some mathematicians calculated the probability that every year since 2000 has been one of the 20 hottest ever recorded. They calculated the odds of that to be one in 1.5 trillion. That is correct - one in 1.5 trillion!

In the post, I showed how this calculation was done.  Since we know how to do the calculation, let's do the calculation for "nine of the ten warmest 12-month periods" occurring within the last two years.

First, they said the record was 136 years long. Let's assume the record started in December of that year - 1879. They don't specify and that gives us the most conservative value. That would give us the first 12-month period ending in December 1880. There would be 12 12-month periods ending every year after that, all the way to December 2014. Then there would be an additional 4 12-month periods from 2015. That gives us a total of 1624 12-month periods since the record began.

Now, in the last two years, there have been 24 12-month periods, one ending each of the 24 months of the last two years. So, the odds of one of those months randomly being in the top 10 is 24 in 1624. We have taken care of one of the top ten and one of the 24 12-month periods, that means the chances of a second top-ten 12-month period occurring in the last two years would be 23 in 1623. After that, the chances would be 22 in 1622. For a fourth period, the odds would be 21 in 1621. And, so forth.

Now, for the chances of nine of the top ten happening in the last two years would be (24/1624) * (23/1623) * (22/1622) * (21/1621) * (20/1620) * (19/1619) * (18/1618) * (17/1617) * (16/1616) = 6.174 x 10^-18. That comes out to one chance in about 1.6 x 10^17 times, or 1 chance in about 160 quadrillion times.

What?!!!!!!!

If we rolled the dice 160 quadrillion times, we would get these results only ONCE! In case you're wondering, if we rolled the dice one time every second, it would take us 5,070,094,050 years (including leap years). (Don't wait up, Honey. The craps game is gonna run late tonight!)

ONE TIME IN 160 QUADRILLION!

For the sake of comparison, the chances of the nine of the top ten hottest 12-month periods occurring within the last two years is about 10,000 times as unlikely as the probability of every year since 2000 being in the top 20.

Oh, by the way, global warming has stopped. Didn't you hear the deniers saying so?

92 comments:

  1. Of course we know, and so do you. The science is absolutely settled. You are just afraid to say so because your sponsors insist that you don't. And, the warming of the past century has been the greatest, most rapid temperature rise in the data history going back more than 800,000 years. Why don't you tell people about that when you're busy telling them it isn't dangerous?

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  2. Once again, you demonstrate your lack of understanding. Yes, it is knowing. The science is settled.

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  3. Science is not an 'opinion.' You don't 'believe' in gravity and you don't 'believe' in climate change. They are scientific realities you either accept or reject. Either way, nature will continue to do its thing. Balls will drop, even if you say gravity doesn't exist. And, the climate will continue to change, even if you deny it. The science is settled, the only thing in dispute is your understanding of it.

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  4. I imagine you could have a couple of kids in school do the physical measurements and a bit of Google Earth would generate a very similar result. That the contrarians want to keep revising science history is quite something....

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  5. I've told you how it is done ... The math is simple, and correct.

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  6. If you don't trust me with the math, here's a good web site:
    http://www.ysbl.york.ac.uk/~cowtan/applets/trend/trend.html

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  7. Voodude, you have made so many embarrassingly incorrect statements that I have decided to address them in a dedicated posting. I'm surprised you were willing to put so many falsehoods, cherry pickings and false arguments into print where they can be brought back to haunt you. Stay tuned for the posting.

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  8. COOLING since 2009? COOLING since early 2012? I've got you beat. It's warmer today than yesterday! There global cooling debunked. And my math is perfect.
    /s

    Idiot.

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  9. Exactly! And, science is not an opinion. There is the failure in your logic. Well, actually, just one more in a whole list of failures.

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  10. Constant Gardener was being sarcastic - making a point of how silly you sound. Then, you step right out and put your foot in it.

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  11. Well, you claim to be an expert. You stood in front of a classroom of students and told them all of the climate scientists in the world were wrong and you were right. You are listed on Heartland's webpage as an 'expert.' Let's here your assessment of how accurate that paper is.

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  12. Despite claims made by the deniers, we did not substitute 'climate change' for 'global warming.' They are two different things and exactly what they sound like. Global warming has to do with the rising temperature of the planet. Climate change has to do with everything that is involved, affected or changed in the climate - including global warming. Ocean acidification, for instance, is not part of global warming (although it is affected by it), but it is certainly part of climate change due to the fact it is being caused by manmade CO2 emissions.

    I try to use both terms when I can (and try to use them correctly) to illustrate the point that the issue of global warming hasn't gone away simply because we also use the term climate change.

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  13. The "still crazy" part would be correct.

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  14. Entities such as Heartland have EVERYTHING to do with this debate. They are the ones subverting science for the benefit of the fossil fuel industry. Surprisingly, you seem to be defending them, even while your standard of living is declining because of them. Watts up with that?

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  15. Are you really attempting to say the clash over science has been around only since the 1990s? Even your link explains it goes back to at least ancient Greece. There have always been hacks and shills like you that want to undermine science for their own benefits or the benefit of their clients. There is nothing new about that and there is nothing new in seeing someone like you engaged in that effort. I'm sure your fossil fuel clients and buddies at Heartland pay you well for your work, but you should really spend more time understanding science instead of rejecting it.

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  16. This is a fun exercise. I would have my students do it in astronomy lab. If they were careful, they could get results well within 5% using little more than a meter stick and a celestial sphere.

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  17. Correct, but the fact that so many people still doubt AGW indicates only that they are not understanding the message of climate scientists. If they don't understand, they will keep electing politicians that manipulate them by also denying the truth. So, until the message about AGW is understood by the public, the composition of Congress will remain hostile towards C02 regulations.


    That's why deniers flourish--because the public is taken in by their falsehoods. it has nothing to do with whether the public is making an educated or correct assessment of climate change---thanks to deniers, they are not! The only reason the public's opinion is crucial is due to its role in a Democracy--not because the science is bad, or false---it isn't!

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  18. What people do with science once it is provided to them is an issue, and has been for millennia.

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  19. Scientific knowledge itself is not dependent on public opinion--the earth would still be spherical even if most people denied that fact. But unfortunately, when the public is successfully duped by deniers, they are not prone to elect officials who actually do understand the science and can then, facilitate actions that reduce Co2.

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  20. Oops! No cooling! In fact, there is a clear warming trend! Pretty embarrassing for you Voodude.

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  21. February 2015 - "The Top UN Climate Change Official is optimistic that
    a new international treaty will be adopted at Paris Climate Change
    conference at the end of the year However the official, Christiana
    Figueres, the Executive Secretary of UNFCCC, warns that the fight
    against climate change is a process and that the necessary
    transformation of the world economy will not be decided at one
    conference or in one agreement."

    The above statement is taken
    form the following website:

    http://www.unric.org/en/latest-un-buzz/29623-figueres-first-time-the-world-economy-is-transformed-intentionally

    Although Ms. Figueres, (warned)
    that we would have to transform the world economy, in order to
    address climate change, your spin on her remarks are missing the
    point;

    Yes of course, if we transition
    from a carbon fuel based economy to a one relying on green energy,
    the economic business model of the world is bound to change. However,
    it will change only out of necessity in order to halt the
    accumulations of C02—which threatens the well being of the entire
    world—not because of some lurking conspiracy which has been
    initiated by climate scientists? The reason Ms Figueres WARNED about
    this eventuality is simply because in order to solve the global
    climate crisis, we must use less coal and oil, and transition to
    renewable energy forms. Like any other course of action i.e. in order
    to combat heart disease we must eat less fatty red meats, and in
    order to balance the family budget we must quit buying expensive
    clothes---these are simply observed necessary actions---not some
    kinds of plots that might force us to do what is not needed! Besides,
    Exxon Mobil will also have every opportunity to invest in green
    energy and transform its own business model to include renewables,
    etc.

    Your suggestion that Capitalism
    itself is at risk, is ludicrous. We will still have companies
    manufacturing all sorts of needed products, like lumber, efficient low energy consuming
    cars, Supermarkets foods, bottles, tools, Utilities, medical drugs,
    etc, etc—in fact almost any kinds of products you can imagine! Yes,
    we will, (of necessity), not use nearly as much gasolene, but there
    will always be a need for some petroleum products. Capitalism ITSELF
    is simply not threatened by a transition to a different energy base?
    And like Christopher says, however we make and use energy, will not
    make the problem of AGW go away—unless we reduce Co2 emissions and
    that of other greenhouse gasses, to accomplish that.

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  22. Where is the ocean data? Why did you ignore 93% of all heating? Is it because it doesn't fit your preconceived conclusions? Cherry picking again.

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  23. Again, no ocean data. Cherry picking. Seems as if your entire argument is based on that principle. "If I carefully pick my data I can prove my case."

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  24. "Where is the ocean data? "
    Didn't get to it. Perhaps, in the meanwhile, you could explain why the oceans cover about 70% of the earth's surface, but you claim it absorbs 93% of all heating?

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  25. Berkeley Earth is a completely independent group that used a completely independent data set and got the same results - the planet is warming.

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  26. You are even using a straw man argument about straw man arguments. This is from Wikipedia on the straw man argument:

    The so-called typical "attacking a straw man" argument creates the
    illusion of having completely refuted or defeated an opponent's
    proposition by covertly replacing it with a different proposition (i.e.,
    "stand up a straw man") and then to refute or defeat that false
    argument ("knock down a straw man") instead of the original proposition.



    Essentially, the straw man argument consists of arguing a point by introducing something different and then attacking the substituted issue, thus avoiding the original issue.


    What you have done is to substitute non-scientific issues by taking political quotes out of context and substituting them for the scientific issue of your claim that the world is cooling. The validity of your claim is the same with, or without, these statements your quoted and they have nothing to do with the issue. So, why did you introduce them? The only answer appears you wanted to divert attention from how you cannot support your claims with valid science.


    Stop with the straw man arguments and, please, try to bring some kind of scientifically valid logic to the discussion. You have failed to do so, to date.

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  27. Sorry, not true. Governments typically sell at a great discount. Oh, and they sell to the billionaires. What a deal.

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  28. The very real problem you have is displayed very prominently - this data comes from Mr. Roy Spencer, a guy at the University of Alabama who is famous for rejecting science and falsifying his data in order to undermine credible climate science. If you EVER believe anything from Roy Spencer, you're going to be wrong. I don't need to go any further, but I will. I'm writing a post to specifically address your claims.

    Try reading this on Roy Spencer for starters:

    http://dialoguesonglobalwarming.blogspot.com/2014/07/30000-challenge-submission-roy-spencer.html

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  29. I thought you might be interested in this excerpt from the DeSmogBlog about Dr. Roy Spencer, who among other things is a meteorologist, not a climate scientists, and believes that there is much more evidence for Biblical creation than for evolution:

    In July 2011, a paper co-authored by Spencer was published in the journal Remote Sensing, “[which is] a fine [peer-reviewed] journal for geographers, but it does not deal with atmospheric and climate science,” RealClimate found. [6]

    His paper looked at a potential connection between clouds and global warming. The paper received significant media attention, and climate change skeptics claimed that it “blow[s] a gaping hole in global warming alarmism.” [7]

    Within three days of the publication of Spencer & Braswell's paper, two climate scientists (Kevin Trenberth & John Fasullo) repeated the analysis and showed that the IPCC models are in agreement with the observations, so refuting Spencer's claims.

    In Andrew Dessler's view, “[This] paper is not really intended for other scientists, since they do not take Roy Spencer seriously anymore (he’s been wrong too many times). Rather, he’s writing his papers for Fox News, the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal, Congressional staffers, and the blogs. These are his audience and the people for whom this research is actually useful — in stopping policies to reduce GHG emissions — which is what Roy wants.” [8]

    In response to the flawed peer review that allowed the publication of the paper, the Editor-in-Chief of Remote Sensing Stepped down. He had this to say: (PDF)

    “After having become aware of the situation, and studying the various pro and contra arguments, I agree with the critics of the paper. Therefore, I would like to take the responsibility for this editorial decision and, as a result, step down as Editor-in-Chief of the journal Remote Sensing.

    With this step I would also like to personally protest against how the authors and like-minded climate sceptics have much exaggerated the paper’s conclusions in public statements…” [9]

    April, 2010



    Did you get that? Dr. Spencer's paper was refuted and the Editor of Remote Sensing himself, who resigned from his post, and actually criticized the fact that "CLIMATE SKEPTICS HAVE MUCH EXAGGERATED THE PAPER'S CONCLUSIONS!"


    De Smog blog also states that even though Spencer has published in peer reviewed journals, he has been wrong so many times that actual climate scientists no longer take him seriously!


    So, if he has such an unreliable history, why would the NAAO consider it factual. Me thinks there is something about your chart that is not truly accurate.

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  30. The heat capacity of the atmosphere is approximately 1.0. The heat capacity of water is about 4.18. If you multiply 1 (heat capacity of land) by .30 (percentage of the Earth surface that is exposed land) you get .30. Do the same for water and you get 2.93. Add the two and you get 3.23. 2.93 is about 91% of that and .3 is about 9%. This is just a back of the envelope calculation to illustrate the point (rough surfaces and ice have not been included, for example). A more thorough discussion can be found here:

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2011GL048794/abstract

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  31. That is gistemp. I made no claims about GISTEMP, what is above is RSS. I start with the current data, work backwards, using RMS Linear Regression, (computed automatically, by this site) ...determine just how far back in the record you can go, with a negative slope. The left end is determined mathematically, the right end is "now" - so I don't get to pick anything, so: no cherries. On that site, leave the "end date blank (so the current data is included), and reproduce the year I cite, in the lefthand window, "start date"
    ... and pick the correct temperature series!

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  32. In your mind, the correct temperature series is the one that leaves out 93% of all heating. You ONLY examined the surface heating and ignored the ocean heating. But, when I did it with surface temperature only, I still got a very positive heating trend. And, that was using your cherry picked data and cherry picked dates. No cooling in the record. Interesting. Oh, I get it! I didn't use anything from Roy Spencer! That explains EVERYTHING.

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  33. I don't "choose" a starting period; the end period is now The basic criteria is - starting from the current data, and using a least-squares linear regression, work backwards in time as far as possible, with an analysis result of a declining trend. So, the decision is mathematical. Either the trend supports warming, or cooling. I don't get to decide... I don't "carefully pick my data I can prove my case." I do, however, pick the temperature series, as GISTEMP "fails" my test; from the current endpoint, no starting point meets the criteria I set forth.

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  34. I already put it up for everyone to see, Russell. The only that is still saying I didn't is you. All the rest of the world knows better. Typical denier strategy - keeping saying long enough and someone might even believe you.

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  35. If the same insolation falls, X (joules), a heat capacity of 1.0 (K/j) would indicate a temperature rise of 1X ... while a heat capacity of 4K/j would indicate a temperature rise of .25X ... and that is just for an equal mass unit.

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  36. No, the decision is not mathematical because if it was, you wouldn't be focused on "17 years." You have to consider ALL data. You have already demonstrated you rejected 93% of the warming. Now, you are demonstrating you are rejecting anything that doesn't fit your preconceived notion. Do you honestly believe a naturally occurring global cooling cycle will present itself in 17 years? Historically, they have taken hundreds to thousands of years to manifest themselves. You simply picked a time frame and data set to support the conclusion you had already reached.

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  37. "You have already demonstrated you rejected 93% of the warming"

    I haven't addressed the "93%" yet.

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  38. Yes, you did when you presented all of your graphs (using Spencer data) to make your point. By that very action, you demonstrated you had reached your conclusion and that conclusion did not include ocean heating.

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  39. I made no claims of a "natural ... cooling cycle" in this context. I pointed out that a linear regression analysis of the current data yields a (slight) cooling trend since XXXX.x year, a period of YY years (in this case, 1997 (1996.91) and 17 years, which is calculated (hence it is reproducible, if one is capable of the mathematics. I can show anyone how to read the data online, and use an on-line calculator to do the regression, thus avoiding me in the loop.

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  40. I will concede you never specifically stated it was a naturally cooling cycle. I hope you aren't claiming manmade emissions are causing a cooling of the planet.

    As for the graphs, I already plotted the data and showed it below, including the ocean data, and it clearly shows a warming trend over the last 17 years.

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  41. Feynman: "It does not make any difference how beautiful your guess is, it does not make any difference how smart you are, who made the guess, or what his name is — if it disagrees with experiment, it is wrong."
    Conversely, it doesn't matter how many wrong guesses you had published, what your reputation is, or what the prevailing opinion of which celestial object that the solar system circles (earth or the sun)... If it agrees with experiment, it should not be dismissed.
    None of your arguments hold against RSS, which has a massive "believer" on staff.

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  42. I posted RSS, but the moderator took it down.

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  43. No, no, not what the governments charge for "leasing drill sites" ... what they charge for taxes. Take gasoline at the pump, for example. The retailer makes less than 5% (typically). Taxes amount to $0.40/gal and adjusted with price ... individual locations vary, some using a percentage, some an adjustable amount per unit ...

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  44. I always find it interesting how anti-science people quote Feynman, and get it wrong. As for Mr. Spencer, when you deliberately falsify the data and results, then you should never be considered. If I had an accountant that stole all of my money, I would never let that person near my money ever again. Spencer made his choice and now has to live with it.

    As for the cooling trend in the RSS data, that is well known. This is caused by a cooling in the stratosphere, not the surface, and is the result of ozone loss and heat being trapped in the lower troposphere.

    http://www.remss.com/research/climate

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  45. Taxes can even be greater than that. If you want to say the government is making more from gasoline than the corner convenience store, I would agree. But, that isn't what you said:

    "Governments make more, from the sale of coal, oil, gas, gasoline, diesel - than the sum of producers+refiners+retailers."

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  46. Tom can't even sling his employers' propaganda correctly. He just told us that the NIPCC must be wrong about the sun contributing 66% of warming because "nobody knows any of this." But I guess it's nothing new that Heartland can only find incompetents to do their dirty work.

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  47. "Evidence?"

    lol! I couldn't produce any hard evidence David Russell has a conscience... It's just a hunch I have.

    ...as far as the evidence it's possible to keep Climate Denialism from spreading, that evidence is demographic:

    "An overwhelming majority of voters under 35 understand the threat of climate change and already see the harmful effects of it, or expect to in their lifetime."

    www.lcv.org/issues/polling/recent-polling-on-youth.pdf

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  48. CO2 increases does infinitesimally increase the "greenhouse effect" and infinitesimally, warm the planet, infinitesimally, in an atmosphere such as Earth's, at the concentration the earth exhibits now. In some cases, like a "snowball earth" where water vapour is intensely frozen out of the atmosphere, it is significant. Increases from zero ppm to, say, 20 or 40 ppm (because of the logarithmic effect) make a significant difference. However, a logarithm is a purely mathematical concept, and (i believe) CO2 approximation of a logarithm-like curve is not absolute... so an increase above 400 ppm (even a doubling to 800) will not increase as much as 200ppmv to 400ppmv. CO2 does cool the planet, however, in that some gases that are incapable of radiating infrared, by relaxation, are capable of transferring energy (via collision) to a CO2 molecule, which then is capable of radiation into space (if the photon goes up etc) Also, Thunderstorms advect co2 molecules from low to high in the troposphere, and if the CO2 is transported in an exited state, it might relax and radiate into space when it is "up there" - thus transporting an absorbed infrared photon up above, and radiating that into space... all mechanisms by which CO2 cools ... but probably not as significant as the "greenhouse effect".

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  49. I have no control over that.

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  50. I may have been mixing up my Russells. (We were dog-sitting a Jack Russell terrier this winter, so that makes it even more confusing.)

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  51. It is a broad generalization, about which I don't have quotes and cites to support. It is more politics than science. Can you refute the statement?

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  52. Infinitesimally? CO2 cools the atmosphere? Oh, man! You have really failed to do any kind of research on the topic.

    The idea of transporting a CO2 molecule up to high altitudes while it is in the excited state will not work. The time a molecule will remain excited is measured in milliseconds, or shorter.

    The sunlight passes through the atmosphere and warms the surface. The surface then radiates the heat out as IR radiation. N2 and O2 don't absorb IR, so it would pass through the atmosphere the same as the visible light if not for greenhouse gases. CO2 is the principle driver and accounts for about 1/3rd of all planetary warming. Water vapor is much more efficient, but wouldn't be there if something else (CO2) didn't make the atmosphere warmer in the first place.

    There is some transfer of energy between CO2 and other molecules (N2 and O2), but that goes both ways.

    Here are a couple of starting points:
    http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/ghgemissions/gases/co2.html
    http://scied.ucar.edu/carbon-dioxide-absorbs-and-re-emits-infrared-radiation

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  53. John Cleese in Fawlty Towers called it "the bleedin' obvious".

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  54. Just another way in which you cherry pick which authors and papers to believe, and which web sites to take in, and which to disregard.

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  55. This is a straw man argument. The issue is your claim that the planet is cooling, not about who makes the most money from fossil fuels. But, if you are looking for information about fossil fuel revenue streams, here's a good place to start:

    http://www.rff.org/Publications/Resources/Pages/186-Money-for-Nothing-The-Case-for-Eliminating-US-Fossil-Fuel-Subsidies.aspx

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  56. But you cherry-picked what temperature series you used. GISS is Gavin, friend of Mann, home to the adjusted data. RSS and UAH are free from Gavin's and Trenberth's influence.

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  57. No cherry picking here. I read everyone, even the deniers. I just use my head about whom I'm going to think credible. If the author rejects science, I'm going to treat that particular piece of work accordingly.

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  58. Funny, you just cherry picked my comments. I already said I found a warming trend using the others, also. And, if you are going to reject something because there is some relationship to Michael Mann, who has a stellar reputation, but accept the word of Spencer, who is know to falsify his data, and the Heartland Institute, which is known to be paid by the fossil fuel industry to deliberately undermine climate science, then the only conclusion is there is simply no chance you will ever accept any science that does not fit your preconceived conclusion. But, I think we already knew that.

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  59. Here's my "core" point. The only thing that suggests "global warming" (mann-caused) is from simulations - computer models. I have researched computer models and find that they are terribly gross, and yet very fine, fine conclusions are made from them. Digging into the details, and discovering errors ranging from an order of magnitude, to a factor of two, and even tens to dozens of percent, covering major themes like ENSO, Clouds, the Carbon Cycle, leads me to conclude that the fine, fine decisions (like James Hansen's 0.58W, or the general 2.5W per square meter of "warming" - cannot possibly be supported by the models.

    The earth's putative radiation "balance" (or imbalance) is stated, publicly, as "resolved" - but unearthing details like major calculation errors that go one way, but are counterbalanced by major errors going the other way, and the audacity and temerity of conclusions about what Hansen says, 240 watts per square meter are absorbed, and his 0.58 out of 240 is about ¼ of one percent - a tiny fraction, and I'm supposed to believe about ¼ of one percent comes out of models that have self-cancelling errors, most models coming in with a factor of two, and inputs that are off by an order of magnitude? Nope.

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  60. NO! Do you really reject EVERYTHING? The reality of global warming is not in dispute and never has been. This planet would not be habitable without the greenhouse effect. And, we know it is caused by greenhouse gases, particularly CO2. The issue is the denier industry that wants to make people believe naturally occurring CO2 will result in global warming, but manmade CO2 won't.

    As for the amount of heat that is being trapped, it is a small percentage - thank goodness. The Sun dumps about 10^24 joules of heat on the planet every day. If we trapped even 1% of it, that would be 10^23 joules of energy. It would take our power plants a hundred years to generate that much power, and that is just what is added to the environment by the Sun in ONE day. Tomorrow, it will do it again.

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  61. Christopher, I hope you realize you are feeding a troll. Voodude obviously has no interest in any scientific truth whatsoever, and no matter what you say, no matter how patently obvious or logical it is, he will find some ridiculous comeback, more than likely a straw man or gish-gallop, but totally, obviously ridiculous whatever. He will not spend an iota of energy paying attention to anything you say. Possibly you are even helping him earn a living by responding to him. I know that sounds far-fetched, but we know that there are Koch/Heartland-financed paid trolls working the internet discussion groups, and though on the face of it nobody would pay someone as patently stupid as Voodude, in fact his type of presentation may be just what they are after. For instance, he is tying up your energies and the energies of your readers and preventing them from being used for more constructive purposes. He has access to volumes of ridiculous visuals and apparently endless time to spend on this discussion board without paying the least bit of attention to the replies he is given. It may well be that he is a professional troll being paid by the post. I have great difficulty finding any other explanation for his behaviour. On second thought, it may simply be a form of mental illness.

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  62. "while it is in the excited state will not work. The time a molecule will remain excited is measured in milliseconds, or shorter."

    So, can you prove how long a CO2 molecule lasts, in the exited state? Can you prove the average path length between absorptions? I don't have that data. It seems reasonable that a photon might "ping pong" between molecules, while the mass is being transported up... but this is a minor point, and has complex mathematics. I know from chasing neutrons around in a nuclear reactor's water moderator; they certainly drift with the moderator currents; but then again, they get thermalized, while photons do not.

    "There is some transfer of energy between CO2 and other molecules (N2 and O2), but that goes both ways." N2 and O2 do not relax in the infrared band.

    I know that these mechanisms exist, I do not know how significant they are.

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  63. About Spencer's chart showing no temperature rise in the troposphere. Here is a link you might find interesting. To find it I had to go past dozens of websites touting the supposed evidence provided by Spencer:

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2015/mar/25/one-satellite-data-set-is-underestimating-global-warming



    it seems that AGW deniers and the sites that support deniers, are pretty darn eager to flood Google with sites filled with glowing praise for spencer's work using satellite readings which supposedly reveal no warming for many years.


    The article above points out that among three groups that create satellite temperature levels--NOAA, RSS, and the University of Alabama Huntsville, (UAH)---these use different methods that attempt to account for the accuracy of satellite measurements. The UAH in fact, has recorded much lower warming than the first two. part of the problem is that UAH does not recognize "tropospheric amplification" which most groups agree result in warmer readings for temperatures in the tropics--more so than warming for corresponding surface temperatures. RSS and NOAA also adjust for a drift connection which accounts for the, (the diurnal cycle). But UAH temperatures are gathered by using satellite when the diurnal drift is small, and UAH bases its temperature corrections on comparisons between three co-orbiting satellites which carry microwave sounding units. According to John Abraham and the Guardian:


    "The present paper represents a calibration scheme that allowed them to obtain a diurnal correction from satellite measurements themselves, in particular, by solving for a common diurnal cycle correction using temperature from all available satellites."


    The article's author also state that the RSS and the NOAA teams actually differ from the UAH! Please read the article for yourself.

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  64. The excitation time can be measured in the lab and there are tables of this information. While I know it is very short, I don't know that the exact value is. Likewise, I have been quoted a value of 300 meters for the extinction distance for CO2 in the atmosphere. The photon won't 'ping pong' between molecules. If it has the right quantum energy, it will be absorbed. This is why the atmosphere is transparent to visible light - it doesn't have the correct quantum parameters to be absorbed by the atmosphere.

    Keep in mind, the moderator in a nuclear reactor is vastly more dense than the atmosphere and that is a critical factor. If molecules bump into something before they relax through radiation, they will transfer the energy as kinetic energy. This is how the N2 and O2 molecules get heated up. As the density drops, the rate of collisions between molecules also drops. A dense atmosphere (as at the surface) has a small fraction of collisions found in a liquid. As the altitude goes up, the density, and the collision rate, starts to drop.

    So, how significant the various mechanisms are depends on the molecules, the frequency of the photon, the relaxation time and the collision frequency, if not more.

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  65. I have just about reached the point of cutting him off. I have come across trolls before and I know how they work (thanks for the heads-up). But, at the same time, I'm hoping to reach out to others that may be asking honest questions. If I just blow off the trolls, they get to have the stage all to themselves. Granted, that will be somewhere else and not at my expense, but they still need to be addressed. But, you are right - there has to be a limit. This has gone on long enough. The very fact he is sitting there responding to me immediately indicates this is his job.

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  66. I've worked with Voodude before.

    This particular patient has a habit of spamming threads with uploaded cartoons and data that refute his claims.

    He's about average in intelligence and emotional intensity. He tends to engage in a rapid flurry of activity and then disappear when challenged.

    "The estimated net increase in the Earth’s energy storage between 1971 and 2010 is 274 [196 to 351] ZJ (1 ZJ = 10²¹ Joules)"

    www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg1/WG1AR5_Chapter03_FINAL.pdf

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  67. Good post, Peter, but guaranteed he will not find it interesting,

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  68. Ha. Looks like he ran away right after we had this little exchange. Coincidence?

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  69. Did you see Obama's amazing speech at the Air Force Academy today? I just watched it, and to me it looks like some kind of a turning point in the climate wars. There's a link to it at http://grist.org/climate-energy/obama-climate-change-poses-immediate-risk-to-national-security/. It's about half an hour long, starting at the 1 hour 14 minute mark of the commencement video.

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  70. Constant GardenerMay 20, 2015 at 10:11 PM

    Usually to get company like him, you have to lay down with dogs.

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  71. Not to mention his friend, the Russell terrier. Apologies to all dogs.

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  72. "Redistribution of Wealth" is just an overused and misunderstood word. If I pay taxes, I am redistributing wealth. If I purchase a new pair of pants, I am redistributing wealth. Even if I give you fifty cents to buy a candy bar, I am redistributing wealth. The term has a buzz worthy status, since it is often misconstrued as being indicative of some ominous of communist ideology at work. However the ways it has been used currently, seldom have anything to do with any real or significant economic revolution.

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  73. I absolutely agree---But the problem is in the misinformation, cherry picked data, taken out of context statements as well as that the many erroneously evaluated studies intended to disprove AGW, since these are not often consistent with objective experimental data, nor with directly observed data.


    It really should be obvious that AGW deniers are the ones dismissing valid research that has been done by reputable and qualified climate scientists. It's people like you who are throwing out and dismissing perfectly logical conclusions made from examining objective data!. The role of a scientists is to obtain knowledge by using the scientific method---that means they cannot, and do not, simply accept the claims of denier without subjecting them thorough evaluations of their research---aka peer reviews! They are not just biased about all the claims made by deniers, rather they just do not find their conclusions valid. If you advance any hypothesis and I reject it after examining all the evidence you present, that does not automatically mean I am biased against your opinions, it simply means that I find them erroneous.

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  74. An ignorant attempt to turn the tables by accusing you opponent of having your own motivations--the keywords are "groups designed."
    Science was developed to discover knowledge, not to smear opponents, and it was espeically not "designed" to do so. But ain't it strange that denial groups and fronts, actually were DESIGNED TO refute AGW global warming affirming scientists? Asking questions is one thing, but organizing groups funded by wealthy benefactors and their corporate wealth, is a completely different matter! Before the beginnings of climate science there were no denial organizations--there was nothing yet to deny--but after well intentioned and reputable climate scientists began publishing their findings, suddenly there was a very intense need for AGW deniers to refute the knowledge that threatened their profits and their ways of making a living. You may try and turn the tables, but anyone who considers the actual history of this issue, will know better!

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  75. I definitely understand the confusion... lol!

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  76. ”Independent research teams have constructed long-term tropical time series of the temperature of the middle troposphere (TMT) using satellite Microwave Sounding Unit (MSU) and Advanced MSU (AMSU) measurements. Despite careful efforts to homogenize the MSU/AMSU measurements, tropical TMT trends beginning in 1979 disagree by more than a factor of 3. Previous studies suggest that the discrepancy in tropical TMT trends is caused by differences in both the TMT NOAA-9 warm target factor and diurnal drift corrections. This work introduces a new observationally based method for removing biases related to satellite diurnal drift. Over land, the derived diurnal correction is similar to a general circulation model (GCM) diurnal cycle. Over ocean, the diurnal corrections have a negligible effect on TMT trends, indicating that oceanic biases are small. It is demonstrated that this method is effective at removing biases between coorbiting satellites and biases between nodes of individual satellites. Using a homogenized TMT dataset, the ratio of tropical tropospheric temperature trends relative to surface temperature trends is in accord with the ratio from GCMs. It is shown that bias corrections for diurnal drift based on a GCM produce tropical trends very similar to those from the observationally based correction, with a trend difference smaller than 0.02 K decade TMT −1. Differences between various TMT datasets are explored further. Large differences in tropical TMT trends between this work and that of the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) are attributed to differences in the treatment of the TMT NOAA-9 target factor and the diurnal cycle correction.”


    Po-Chedley, Stephen, Tyler J. Thorsen, and Qiang Fu 2014. "Removing diurnal cycle contamination in satellite-derived tropospheric temperatures: Understanding tropical tropospheric trend discrepancies.” Journal of Climate
    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00767.1

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  77. Perhaps - I'll avoid politics - but the point is that the IPCC is a political body, not a scientific one. The cherry-picked science is just lipstick, on a pig.

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  78. From Heartland's own promotional literature:In 2014, Mr. Harris received the Excellence in Climate Science Communication Award and a cash stipend from The Heartland Institute. The award was presented in Las Vegas at the Ninth International Conference on Climate Change on July 7-9.http://climatechangeawards.org/tom-harris/

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  79. http://dialoguesonglobalwarming.blogspot.com/2015/05/voodude-world-is-cooling.html

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  80. I am not a fan of Obama but I do appreciate the stand he is taking on climate change. We need our national leaders to stand up like this more often.

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  81. I've been extremely disappointed by much that happened under Obama's watch, in particular the increased NSA surveillance, the war on whistle-blowers, the drone wars, and his "all of the above" energy policies, but it is quite impressive to see a President with such a clear grasp of the climate science and its implications, and a willingness to use his considerable intellect and rhetorical powers to educate the public.

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  82. Constant GardenerMay 21, 2015 at 4:53 PM

    Russel Seitz has a low opinion of ICCC10. He's a hoot! Is it tough to be the object of such derision by actual scientists?
    http://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/

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  83. Amazing!

    I loved how they had the Three Stooges in one of their memes because I call them the Three Stooges of the fossil fuel industry.

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  84. Constant GardenerMay 21, 2015 at 7:00 PM

    Seitz is hysterical. Though he's so erudite that sometimes I don't get the joke.

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  85. Excuse me?


    Look here:
    http://www.climatehotmap.org/global-warming-effects/economy.html
    Or here:
    http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/global-warming/gw-effects/
    Or here:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/07/science/earth/climate-change-report.html?_r=0
    Or here:
    http://www.nrdc.org/health/climate/
    Or here:
    http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/urgentissues/global-warming-climate-change/threats-impacts/

    Here's some of the many scientific papers on specific aspects of the effects:
    Here: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/003807179400242S
    Here:
    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/302/5651/1719.short
    Here: http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/371/2002/20120408.abstract
    Here:
    http://bioscience.oxfordjournals.org/content/58/9/811.abstract
    Here:
    http://sp.lyellcollection.org/content/288/1/1.abstract
    Here:
    http://bioscience.oxfordjournals.org/content/57/11/939.abstract
    Here:
    http://www.bmj.com/content/329/7480/1416.full
    Here:
    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/305/5686/994.abstract

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  86. Sowing awareness is important, sowing foolishness isn't

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  87. Amazing considering you were doing that for at least a year at a university and continue to do so...

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