Friday, January 6, 2017

GWPF Newsletter: Death Of Global Temperature ‘Pause’ Greatly Exaggerated

2016 Not Statistically Warmer Than 1998, Satellites Data Shows

In this newsletter:

1) Death Of Global Temperature ‘Pause’ Greatly Exaggerated
The GWPF Observatory, 5 January 2016
2) 2016 Not Statistically Warmer Than 1998, Satellites Data Shows
Dr Roy Spencer, 3 January 2017
3)  North Atlantic Ocean Cooling Rapidly
NoTricksZone, 5 January 2017
4) “Hottest Year Evah”: A Reality Check
Not A Lot Of People Know That, 1 January 2017
5) Judith Curry Retires, Citing ‘Craziness’ Of Climate Debate
E&E News, 4 January 2017
6) Friends Of The Earth Promise: We Will Never Again Spread Misleading Anti-Fracking Scares
The Times, 4 January 2017
7) Stephen Moore: 2016’s Biggest Loser - The Green Blob
The Washington Times, 1 January 2017

Full details:

1) Death Of Global Temperature 'Pause' Greatly Exaggerated
The GWPF Observatory, 5 January 2016
Dr David Whitehouse, GWPF Science Editor

Any estimate of temperature trends that have their endpoint on the uptick of the El Nino curve will give a misleadingly high trend.  A new paper falls into this trap, claiming the global temperature hiatus never existed. 

The headlines say there is fresh doubt over the so-called global warming “hiatus” or “pause” – a period since around the turn of the century when many scientists believe that global surface temperatures have increased at a lesser rate than before. This is because a new study suggests that the temperature of the oceans were being underestimated in the past 20 years or so because the ocean buoys used to measure sea temperatures were recording slightly cooler temperatures that the older ship’s intake systems, not a particularly new or surprising finding. It is an interesting study in that it produces individual ocean temperature data for buoys, satellites as well as for different ways of combining ship-intake methods and buoys.

Clearly different instruments measuring ocean temperatures will have different properties and such effects need to be studied so that data sets from each instrument can be combined to provide ocean temperature measurements over longer periods than any one method has achieved. So far, so good. But then the paper makes a gross error for the calibration of instrumental effects is one thing, what those instruments show is another. So the temperature measured by the buoys is cooler than ships, but what measurements are they producing, how is the ocean temperature changing, especially during the hiatus period?

The fundamental error made in the paper is in calculating the temperature trends in recent years – the period of the so-called global temperature hiatus. One has to be very careful about estimating temperature trends as they depend strongly on start and end years and changes of a year or two in them can produce very different results. One also has to be aware of the structure in the temperature data of the past 20-years or so as it is dominated not by long-term warming but by natural inter-annual events that are much stronger. There is the very strong 1998 El Nino that elevates temperatures, the much cooler La Nina years of 1999 and 2000, the El Ninos of 2010 and 2015 as well as smaller El Ninos and La Nina effects.

The 2015-16 El Nino has been one of the strongest on record temporarily elevating global temperatures by a significant margin. 2016 was the warmest year of the instrumental period (post 1850) but in the later part of the year global surface temperatures started to decline markedly. This means that any estimate of temperature trends that have their endpoint on the uptick of the El Nino curve will give a misleadingly high trend. It is obvious that a better trend will be obtained after the natural El Nino has ended. Likewise care must be taken if the start point is near the La Nina years of 1999-2000.

The temperature trends of the oceans estimated by the paper fall into this trap. Technically the trends calculated are accurate for the start and end points used, but they are unwise start and end points which are, to use a frequently misunderstood term, cherry-picked.

Consider the graph of ocean temperature data produced by the paper’s lead author. The El Nino at the end of the data is obvious. Like every other El Nino it will come down again, probably altering the conclusions of the paper that the pause never existed. Click on image to enlarge.

Screen Shot 2017-01-05 at 13.13.01

see also: REPORT: Satellites Show The Global Warming ‘Pause’ Is Back

2) 2016 Not Statistically Warmer Than 1998, Satellites Data Shows
Dr Roy Spencer, 3 January 2017

Strong December Cooling Leads to 2016 Being Statistically Indistinguishable from 1998

The Version 6.0 global average lower tropospheric temperature (LT) anomaly for December 2016 was +0.24 deg. C, down substantially from the November value of +0.45 deg. C (click for full size version):

The resulting 2016 annual average global temperature anomaly is +0.50 deg. C, which is (a statistically insignificant) 0.02 deg. C warmer than 1998 at +0.48 deg. C. We estimate that 2016 would have had to be 0.10 C warmer than 1998 to be significantly different at the 95% confidence level. Both 2016 and 1998 were strong El Nino years.

Full post

3)  North Atlantic Ocean Cooling Rapidly
NoTricksZone, 5 January 2017
Kenneth Richard

While it has understandably not received much, if any, media attention, the North Atlantic Ocean has been rapidly cooling since the mid-2000s, or for more than 10 years now.

The longer the cooling trend continues — and scientists are projecting more cooling for the coming decades  —  the more difficult it will be to ignore. The North Atlantic Ocean is, after all, a key trend-setter for hemispheric- and perhaps even global-scale climate changes.

In their new paper, for example, Reynolds and colleagues (2017) point out that natural fluctuations in heat transport initiated by the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) are “directly linked” to precipitation and warming/cooling temperature trends in Africa, Brazil, North America, and Europe.   Not only that, but the authors explain that a centennial-scale reduction in surface heat transport (AMOC) can explain the dramatic reduction in surface temperatures from the warmth of the Medieval Warm Period to the frigid Little Ice Age, which, of course, could imply that centennial-scale increases in surface heat transport could explain warming periods.

Reynolds et al., 2017   Evidence derived from instrumental observations suggest that Atlantic variability, associated with changes in SSTs and fluctuations in the strength of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), is directly linked with broader scale climate variability, including Brazilian and Sahel precipitation (Folland et al., 1986 and Folland et al., 2001), Atlantic hurricanes and storm tracks (Goldenberg et al., 2001 and Emanuel, 2005), and North American and European temperatures (Sutton and Hodson, 2005, Knight et al., 2006 and Mann et al., 2009). Furthermore, evidence derived from palaeoceanographic records suggests that a reduction in the meridional heat transport through the surface components of the AMOC was in part responsible for the reductions in temperatures associated with the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA; 1000–1450) to Little Ice Age (LIA; 1450–1850) transition (Lund et al., 2006, Trouet et al., 2009, Trouet et al., 2012, Wanamaker et al., 2012 and Moffa-Sánchez et al., 2014).

Examining the Reynolds et al. (2017) graph of North Atlantic sea surface temperatures since the early 1800s, we notice that temperatures (shown to have declined by about -0.45 °C since 2005) are colder now than they were in the 1940s and 1950s, and that even the early 1800s had warmer temperatures than now.

Serykh (2016) points out that the warming enjoyed across Europe and Asia between the 1970s and late 1990s may have been associated with natural decadal-scale oscillations in heat transport.   Similar to Reynolds et al. (2017), Serykh’s graph of ocean heat content reveals no net warming in the last 60 years.

Serykh, 2016       A dipole structure of inter-decadal variations in the heat content of the ocean and heat fluxes from the ocean to the atmosphere has been detected in the North Atlantic. The following fact deserves special attention: the cyclonic and anti-cyclonic atmospheric circulation anomalies, as well as the decrease and increase in the ocean heat content, take place concurrently and quasi-synchronously in the Iceland minimum and Azores maximum regions. Owing to this, the western heat transport anomalies along the 50th parallel increase or decrease the transport of heat from the Atlantic Ocean to the Euro-Asian continent, and the climate in Europe and Siberia becomes more marine or more continental. The very fast climate warming of the Euro-Asian continent that began in the 1970s may be associated with the enhanced heat transport from the North Atlantic in this period. This is evident from the fields and time series obtained in the present paper. The hiatus of this warming after 1999 may be due to the decreased heat transfer from the North Atlantic Ocean to the Eurasian territory.

Full post

4) “Hottest Year Evah”: A Reality Check
Not A Lot Of People Know That, 1 January 2017
Paul Homewood

Supposedly 2016 was the banner year for global warming. So what has it brought?

Arctic sea ice extent finishes the year at the level of the last few years:

NH snow extent was at the second highest on record this autumn:

Greenland’s ice sheet has been growing at a phenomenal rate:

Hurricane activity for the last 12 months has been normal:

The US tornado season has been one of the quietest on record:

US wildfires have been below the 10-year average:

Full post

see also: Global weather-related disaster losses as a proportion of GDP, 1990-2016;graph Roger Pielke Jr. 4 January 2017


5) Judith Curry Retires, Citing ‘Craziness’ Of Climate Debate
E&E News, 4 January 2017
Scott Waldman

Judith Curry, one of climate science’s most vocal critics, is leaving academe because of what she calls the poisonous nature of the scientific discussion around human-caused global warming.

Image result for Judith Curry
Dr. Judith Curry before the House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space and Technology Hearing on the President’s UN Climate Pledge, April 15th, 2015

Curry, 63, is retiring from her tenured position as a professor at the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She’s instead going to focus on growing her private business, Climate Forecast Applications Network, which provides insights into climate and weather risks for agriculture and energy companies.

The climatologist, who distinguished herself in the field decades ago with research into the Arctic and the causes of the climate feedback that have shaped the region, writes a blog called Climate Etc. It is by turns academic and inflammatory.

There she occasionally mocks what she calls “climate alarmists” who say time is almost out unless humanity weans itself off fossil fuels. In her blog and on Twitter, she has also criticized some of the scientists, including Pennsylvania State University climatologist Michael Mann and Harvard University climate historian Naomi Oreskes, who have become leading voices for climate action. She has testified in front of Congress, boosted by politicians who use her work to argue that environmental regulations and a scaling down of fossil fuel use will be ineffective. Her work is frequently invoked by climate skeptics and denialists. Congressional Democrats, displeased with her conclusions, have investigated the source of her funding.

Curry actually believes, along with the vast majority of climate scientists, that humans are warming the planet, and was even an outspoken advocate of the issue during the George W. Bush years. She was among the first to connect global warming to hurricanes, for example, publishing an influential study in Science in 2006. But where she breaks with the majority opinion is over just how much humans are actually causing global temperatures to rise.

Where many scientists say that humans are the primary cause of warming, Curry believes natural forces play a larger role. She also believes that uncertainty around climate models means we don’t have to act so quickly and that current plans would do little to mitigate warming. She also questions the assertion made by a majority of climate scientists who believe humans have significantly contributed to climate change. In the Obama years, she has become a contrarian of sorts, often criticizing those who rely on climate models to prove that humans are warming the planet at an unprecedented rate.

In announcing her retirement, Curry wrote about what she called her “growing disenchantment with universities, the academic field of climate science and scientists.” She said a deciding factor for leaving the ivory tower was that “I no longer know what to say to students and postdocs regarding how to navigate the CRAZINESS in the field of climate science,” adding that research and funding for it are highly politicized.

In an interview with E&E News, Curry said she would like to see a greater focus on the uncertainties of climate science and a better exploration of them through scientific debate free of politics.

“Once you understand the scientific uncertainties, the present policy path that we’re on doesn’t make a lot of sense,” she said. “We need to open up policy dialogue to a bigger solution space. So I’m just looking to open up the dialogue and to provoke people into thinking.”

Curry, in general, believes that the policies undertaken by the Obama administration won’t do much to reduce global warming levels. That has made her the target of scientists who accuse her of aiding the climate denialists who oppose the environmental regulations of the last eight years and are eager to dismantle them under President-elect Donald Trump. Curry is not convinced that Trump will damage the climate science field, which she said has gone in the wrong direction under Obama.

“Once we get over this little bump of activism, if the Trump administration will put us on a slightly reassuring and saner footing, that will allow all this to die down,” she said. “We can always hope.”

Curry’s departure from academe will weaken the field of climate science, which needs people to ask hard questions that differ from the mainstream, said Roger Pielke Jr., a professor at the University of Colorado who previously worked with Curry and recently switched fields from climate science to sports governance after facing intense pressure of his own. Curry has consistently been willing to stick out her neck to ask questions that other scientists avoid for reasons of political expediency, he said. Purposely choosing a “different song sheet to sing off of” has earned her an unfair level of criticism, Pielke said.

“If you only look at her academic career, absent the glossy overlay of the climate debate, you would say this is a pretty distinguished academic who had a pretty successful career,” he said. “The facts that she was excoriated by her peers, smeared and so on just illustrates having a tenured position isn’t a guarantee of academic freedom.”

Full post

6) Friends Of The Earth Promise: We Will Never Again Spread Misleading Anti-Fracking Scares
The Times, 4 January 2017
Ben Webster

A green campaign group has agreed not to repeat misleading claims about the health and environmental impacts of fracking after complaints to the advertising watchdog.

Image result for Friends of the Earth Fracking ASA
Friends of the Earth flyer: The  Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) said Friends of the Earth “agreed not to repeat the claims, or claims that had the same meaning”

Friends of the Earth spent more than a year trying to defend its claims, which were made in a fundraising leaflet, but has been forced to withdraw them.

The group’s capitulation is a victory for a retired vicar and a retired physics teacher who have been working for years to expose what they believe is scaremongering about a safe technique for extracting shale gas.

The Rev Michael Roberts and Ken Wilkinson complained about Friends of the Earth’s claims to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which also received a complaint from the fracking company Cuadrilla.

The authority found that Friends of the Earth (FoE) failed to substantiate claims that fracking could cause cancer, contaminate water supplies, increase asthma rates and send house prices plummeting.

The ASA produced its draft ruling in July but was forced to delay sending it to its council for approval because FoE repeatedly requested more time to challenge the findings. The group finally agreed not to repeat the claims in a deal with the ASA under which it has avoided having a formal ruling against it.

The ASA said: “We have told Friends of the Earth Trust Ltd and Friends of the Earth Ltd not to make claims about the likely effects of fracking on the health of local populations, drinking water or property prices in the absence of adequate evidence.”

Mr Wilkinson, who said that he had no connection with the fracking industry and was acting purely to ensure the public received accurate information, welcomed the ruling. “It is outrageous that FoE used false information to raise money,” he said. “We need a frank debate about fracking and its potential impacts but it should be based on facts, not scaremongering.”

Full post

7) Stephen Moore: 2016’s Biggest Loser - The Green Blob
The Washington Times, 1 January 2017

Voters turned thumbs down on the climate change lobby and rightly so

Image result for Josh cartoon green blob

The day after the presidential elections the executive director of the Sierra Club glumly called the Donald Trump victory “deeply disturbing for the nation and the planet.” Well, yes, if you’re a climate change alarmist who hates fossil fuels, you’re in for a bad four and maybe eight years.

Greenpeace executive director Annie Leonard was even more apocalyptic saying: “I never thought I’d have to write this. The election of Donald Trump as president has been devastating There’s no question, Donald Trump’s climate denial is staggering. He wants to shut down the EPA, cancel the Paris Climate Agreement, stop funding clean energy research and drill baby drill.” Ah, but if this is so crazy, why did he win?

The short answer is that Americans went to the polls and rejected environmental extremism among other things. The biggest loser on election night was the Big Green movement in America dedicated to the anti-prosperity proposition that to save the planet from extinction we have deindustrialize the U.S. and throw millions and millions of our fellow citizens out of their jobs. Voters turned thumbs down on the climate change lobby and rightly so.

It may seem an exaggeration to say that the radical leftist green groups want to throw working class Americans out of their jobs — but it isn’t. They openly admit it.

The Sierra Club actually declared “victory” last year when it helped push several of America’s leading coal production companies into bankruptcy. Sierra Club spokeswoman, Lena Moffit, took credit for destroying coal production in America, but she neglected to mention the tens of thousands of miners, truckers, construction workers, and other blue collar workers who lost their jobs due to the Sierra Club campaign. What humanitarians these people are.

Ms. Moffit promised that the Sierra Club will “bring the same expertise that we brought to taking down the coal industry and coal-fired power in this country to taking on gas in the same way to ensure that we’re moving to a 100% clean energy future.”

Wait a minute. There are an estimated 10 million Americans who are directly or indirectly employed by the oil and gas and coal industries. The left wants to put every one of these people out of a job? Will they use Stalinistic worker relocation programs to pull this off? And by the way, someone might want to inform these self-proclaimed scientific geniuses that natural gas is clean energy.

Fortunately, we learned on election day that voters aren’t as alarmed as the alarmists are. Almost none of the voters that I met in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Indiana, or Michigan had anything but contempt for the climate change fanatics. They view this as another attempt by Washington to run their lives and completely ignore their economic plight in favor of grandiose dreams of the government somehow changing the weather.

In so many ways climate change was one of the primary issues that allowed Donald Trump to crash through the blue wall of the industrial Midwest. The Democrats’ preposterous opposition to building the Keystone XL pipeline which could create as many as 10,000 high-paying construction, welding, pipefitting, electrician jobs is emblematic of how the party that is supposed to represent union workers turned their backs on their own members and their families.

The Paris climate change treaty puts America last and forces us to stop using cheap, reliable and abundant domestic fossil fuels while the rest of the world — particularly China and India — are all in on coal. Nobody in Washington seemed to notice that as The Wall Street Journal reported last month: “China’s government will raise coal production by as much as 20% by 2020, ensuring a continuing strong role for the commodity in the country’s energy future.” That’s more than the entire energy usage of Canada in a year. Um, does this sound like a country that has any interest in cutting its carbon emissions? Amazing that the truck drivers in Indiana, and the coal workers in West Virginia, and the steel producers in Ohio get that the rest of the world is laughing at us, and the president of the United States doesn’t.

The surprise of this election is that Democrats were surprised by the mass voter rejection of the radical climate change agenda. Every poll for the last five years at least has shown that climate change barely registers as a leading concern of American voters. Jobs and the economy were always issues number one and two, and global warming was usually close to last on the list. A 2015 Fox News poll found that only 3 percent of Americans believed that climate change was “the most important issue facing America today.” That means 97 percent disagreed with Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bernard Sanders and Tom Steyer that global warming was the greatest threat to America. This didn’t stop Hillary Clinton from telling West Virginians that she would put every coal miner out of a job. Then she wonders why she got crushed in this unionized historically reliable Democratic state.

The issue that now confronts Democrats is whether they can reconnect with blue collar union voters by disassociating themselves from the fanatical greens that are trying to destroy union blue collar jobs. It won’t be easy. Environmental groups are said to be raising record hauls of cash from their millionaire and billionaire donors since the election. Ultra-green environmentalists like Tom Steyer may call the party’s tunes, but then don’t be surprised when millions of blue collar middle-class workers flee to the Republicans.

Something has to give in the Democratic Party. My prediction is that Democrats will only make a comeback in American politics when they throw crazies like Tom Steyer, the Sierra Club, and Greenpeace off the bus and start listening to the everyday concerns of working-class Americans again.

The London-based Global Warming Policy Forum is a world leading think tank on global warming policy issues. The GWPF newsletter is prepared by Director Dr Benny Peiser - for more information, please visit the website at

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