Climate Records Shattered in 2013

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By Becky Oskin

 

If global warming could be compared to middle-age weight gain, then Earth is growing a boomer belly, according to a newly released report on the state of the global climate.

Climate data show that global temperatures in 2013 continued their long-term rising trend. In fact, 2013 was somewhere between the second- and sixth-hottest year on record for the planet since record keeping began in 1880, according to the climate report, released Thursday (July 17) by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). (Four groups of scientists, who rely on slightly different methods to calculate global surface temperatures, ranked 2013 slightly differently compared with other years.)

The annual State of the Climate report compiles climate and weather data from around the world and is reviewed by 425 climate scientists from 57 countries. The report can be viewed online.

“You can think of it as an annual checkup on the planet,” said Kathryn Sullivan, NOAA administrator.

And the checkup results show the planet ranged well outside of normal levels in 2013, hitting new records for greenhouse gases, Arctic heat, warm ocean temperatures and rising sea levels.

“The climate is changing more rapidly in today’s world than at any time in modern civilization,” said Thomas Karl, director of NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center. “If we look at it like we’re trying to maintain an ideal weight, then we’re continuing to see ourselves put more weight on from year to year,” he said.

Climate scientists blame rising levels of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide, in the atmosphere for the planet’s changing climate. The levels of carbon dioxide in Earth’s atmosphere at Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii hit 400 parts per million (ppm) for the first time in 2013. The worldwide average reached 395.3 ppm, a 2.8 ppm increase from 2012, NOAA reports. (Parts per million denotes the volume of a gas in the air; in this case, for every 1 million air molecules, 400 are carbon dioxide.)

“The major greenhouse gases all reached new record high values in 2013,” said Jessica Blunden, a climate scientist with ERT, Inc., and a NOAA contractor who helped write the report.

Most parts of the planet experienced above-average annual temperatures in 2013, NOAA officials said. Australia experienced its warmest year on record, while Argentina had its second warmest and New Zealand its third warmest. There was a new high-temperature record set at the South Pole, of minus 53 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 47 degrees Celsius).

70 COMMENTS

  1. @OP – In fact, 2013 was somewhere between the second- and sixth-hottest year on record for the planet since record keeping began in 1880, according to the climate report, released Thursday (July 17) by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). (Four groups of scientists, who rely on slightly different methods to calculate global surface temperatures, ranked 2013 slightly differently compared with other years.)

    The annual State of the Climate report compiles climate and weather data from around the world and is reviewed by 425 climate scientists from 57 countries. The report can be viewed online.

    Yet another definitive set of reports.

    . . . .. .Not that that will impress those with denial-blinkers, those who can’t or won’t read science reports, or those whose views are shaped around disinformation funding from fat-cat polluters!

    • I would be interested in how they go about asserting it is nonsense. Keep me posted. I used it too in an Australian Forum associated with a very good TV program called Q and A. I will post any attempts at negation back here.

      Deciding whether or not to act on global warming is a Pascal’s Wager in my opinion. If you choose to act, (believe in god) by reducing green house emissions and expanding renewables, and then nothing happens, all that you have done is moved energy sources. If you choose not to act (don’t believe in god) and something happens (There was a god afterall) then you are dead.

      • Hi David,

        I agree with you so please don’t take this as being overly pedantic – but I’m going to be overly pedantic. Pascal’s Wager falls simply based upon the fact that there are an infinite amount of potential alternative beliefs that are mutually exclusive and all share as much foundation in reality so the only sensible course of action in Pascal’s case is to look at the evidence and try to ascertain as well as possible which is actually more likely to be true. Of course that leads you to the conclusion that you should choose to offend no God so far as you can – that he could not see this as a mathematician I find very hard to understand. So getting back to the analogy yes you are absolutely right of course even if you have doubts you should go with the safer course but unlike Pascal you should given that there are alternative views you should look at the evidence that separates them and in this case it all points towards doing the right thing anyway. Sorry to nit pick I just dislike Pascal.

        Regards

    • Well Tony Abbott famously said climate change was “absolute crap”. Government backbencher Ian Macdonald accused opposition parties of being hypocrites for refusing to accept the will of the voters and said that while he had “an open mind”, he would like to point out that Brisbane had recently had its coldest day in 113 years.
      With politicians who think the weather in Brisbane is an indicator of a lack of global change reason has no chance. No amount of evidence is going to enter their thick heads.

      • Yes my heart sank as an Australian a little more this week as the inevitable happened, (Australia repealing the Carbon Tax). This from a Government so desperate to put us into surplus that many useful programs are being cut but they choose to remove this massive revenue source and lock us into continual expense that is burning of fossil fuels. That this government did not appoint a minister for science when they have one for sport is telling, they don’t want to inflict a minister responsible for science with the quite reasonable question as to why as a minister for science do you hold a position against all science in this issue. Abbot must go!

        The Brisbane is cold (ha so much for global warming) response is so similar to those that say there has been record snow falls in America that it make you want to cry, ‘How did the snow get up into air?’ I ask my AWG denying friends and watch while they try to connect the dots from primary school science lessons explaining the water cycle. Australia, what a heartbreak country you are. I think I should emigrate somewhere more enlightened – suggestions?

        • Reckless Monkey Jul 19, 2014 at 5:22 pm

          Yes my heart sank as an Australian a little more this week as the inevitable happened, (Australia repealing the Carbon Tax).

          Let’s just hope Twerpy Abbot does not get his hands on this project!

          http://www.austela.com.au/

          WELCOME TO THE AUSTRALIAN SOLAR THERMAL ENERGY ASSOCIATION

          The Australian Solar Thermal Energy Association (AUSTELA) was formed on 31 January 2011 as the industry body solely dedicated to solar thermal energy generation in Australia.

          AUSTELA assists energy sector policy-makers, investors, analysts, commentators and the Australian community, to better understand the benefits of large-scale solar thermal power generation; output to meet peak electricity demand, dispatchable power with no carbon emissions, cost-efficient energy storage, and the ability to operate in hybrid configuration with biomass, geothermal and fossil fuels.

          Ivanpah 392 MW concentrated solar project now online

    • Harry, I realize that this may come as somewhat of a revelation, but there is actually more to the planet than just the US of A. Something that you would have seen that your link pointed out with respect to the whole world, that is, the US of A and the other bits, having just experienced the 4th warmest year ever, had you bothered to read a bit more than the headline.

        • harry Jul 19, 2014 at 11:02 pm – Sorry, I was too busy studying the Gore effect. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gore_Effect

          You need to study it harder: – to recognise it is not science, but a joke about, or from, scientifically illiterate people who can’t tell global climate warming from a cold day of local weather!

          .. the Columbia Journalism Review has called coverage of the Gore Effect “asinine”, noting the distinction between short-term weather and long-term climate.[19] Michael Daly criticized a mere delight in noting coincidences between events relating to Gore’s favorite subject and severe winter weather.”[14] and environmentalist A. Siegel has called the jokes a “shallow observation” from “those who don’t get that weather isn’t climate

    • For the first time in 20 years, the USA saw more record cold temperatures than record hot temperatures in 2013.

      In other words, almost all modern years have more highs than lows in the US. We therefore have two options: either 2013 illustrates the fact that a year has a small probability of lows outnumbering hots even during a warming trend, or the warming of the US stopped very recently. If warming magically did stop, in defiance of basic physical laws, it’d take longer than that to be sure. When you think about it, all a warming trend guarantees is that more than half of years have highs outnumbering lows. The fact that about 95 % do speaks volumes, doesn’t it Harry?

    • harry,

      Let me try to put this in terms you might understand.

      There are two large oceans on either side of America. If they get hotter especially at the equator where the Sun (due to the spherical nature of the planet) ensures that the Sun’s light and heat hit it more directly. This air heated from the oceans is now hotter and wetter this extra heat from the equator will now travel towards the poles cold air sinks to fill in the gaps warm air rises this migrates the heat from equator to poles (Its much more complicated than this but your comments indicate general ignorance so I’ll keep things simple), an experiment you can do yourself with a glass of cold water and a pipet of heated dyed water you will see convection currents. This warm wet air now comes into contact with colder dryer air freezing the large amounts of water which falls as snow, causing snow and ice storms where they may have happened less often in the pass. This makes the local area cold, yes freezing cold. This is due to the fact that heat will be distributed on a spherical planet and the effect is exaggerated in a warming climate which means more aggressive mixing, which can mean the two things rising global temperatures and record cold snaps. These are entirely consistent, in fact what had been predicted for decades before it happened a fact which you seem ignorant and many in Dawkin’s world are aware of – because most of us read the science.

      • Therefore, you are not denying that the for the first time in 20 years, the USA saw more record cold temperatures than record hot temperatures in 2013. Seems that posted information tends to be a little selective round these parts, wouldn’t you agree?. Thank you for your time and patience, Reckless.

        • Therefore, you are not denying that the for the first time in 20 years,

          No, he’s not denying it. Nor am I. But he explained the science (very well) that causes this, and it is in accord with Global Warming. Add more energy to a system, you push extremes at both ends, hot and cold. Global warming models predict exactly this.

          Pools of hotter air, hotter than previously experienced, are harder to shift. So a bank of cold air, has to be bigger to displace the warmer air. So when the cold air comes, (a cold front), it is colder than normal.

          Nothing to see folks. Move along. Just more science stuff.

          • Just more science stuff? But this is Dawkins World. The impetus isn’t scientific. The impetus is the political need for a story that can inform political action.

        • Harry, do you realize what you just said: “For the first time in 20 years the USA saw more record cold temperature than record hot temperatures.”

          Your words, not mine, and you had better go check them, because by your own statement, there have, therefore, been 19 record breaking years of hot temperatures in a row.

          That, I would suggest, indicates a trend, wouldn’t you agree?

      • Just more science stuff? But this is Dawkins World. The impetus isn’t scientific. The impetus is the political need for a story that can inform political action.

        Science is the process by which we gain knowledge about the world around us. It is a system of checking your facts. It is because science throws out information when it is found to be incorrect that it has succeeded where dogma has failed, you could not for example be engaging in this debate where it not for all the failures in understanding physics (particularly the behaviour of electrons) where not rejected. Dogma never leads to anything by stultification at best and genocide at worst.

        You are engaging in Dogma and trying to criticise those of us who have taken the time to report to you on the peer reviewed science as engaging in the same. And yes science does inform my political actions, and if it changes those changes will inform them also. In the same sense that when I fly in an aircraft I am informed by and put my life in my knowledge of aerodynamics which while not complete is complete enough to determine what behaviours I should or should not engage in. The experiment that every aircraft engages on take off till landing successfully confirms my confidence in this method.

        I have addressed your assertion that there can be a record number of cold snaps in a country and that is entirely consistent with the predictions of climate scientists long before you dredged it up in whatever propaganda site you derived it from. Did they tell you that climate scientists predicted exactly what you have stated before they reported on it as refutation of their conclusions? I bet they didn’t because – they are lying to you. So do you have the integrity to address my criticisms directly or are you just going to shoot a blast in my general direction and run away and hide between your arrogant assertion about what motivates the contributors to this forum. I think I know the answer but believe me like AWG I am happy to be proved wrong, have done so in the past and publicly admitted and apologised for my errors on this site but you are going to have to do more than try to throw a vapid insult at me to do so, you will need to present some facts.

        • Yes but what precisely are the facts, RM? Surely if science means anything, it means predictability not unpredictability. If I hold an apple and let it go I can predict 99.9% that it will fall to the ground, that it will not go flying off into space. I cannot be 100% certain that it will not but I can demonstrate this with reasonable certainty time and time and time again and the results will always be the same. In other words, thanks to gravity, I can predict the outcome even before releasing the apple. That is science. So RM, you remember how you told me that although it appears paradoxical, climate warming means record breaking cold temperatures in winter is consistent with record breaking highs in summer, how could you then explain the following apparent contradiction?

          Climate Change Could Melt the Winter Olympics

          Athletes are getting ready for a warm, soggy Winter Games in Sochi. But thanks to global warming, that could soon be the norm for the Winter Olympics. by mid-century, close to half of the previous host cities could likely be too warm for outdoor sports like Alpine skiing and snowboarding

          • If I hold an apple and let it go I can predict 99.9% that it will fall to the ground, that it will not go flying off into space. I cannot be 100% certain that it will not but I can demonstrate this with reasonable certainty time and time and time again and the results will always be the same. In other words, thanks to gravity, I can predict the outcome even before releasing the apple. That is science. So RM, you remember how you told me that although it appears paradoxical, climate warming means record breaking cold temperatures in winter is consistent with record breaking highs in summer, how could you then explain the following apparent contradiction?

            Two errors in this. First. You are confusing science like the laws of gravity or the speed of light, which are almost absolute, with conclusions draw from a great diversity of scientific disciplines. which when taken on their own may not mean a lot. But when these vast and different disciplines are taken together, the science becomes what is called “Consensus Science” and has a high probability of being correct. It becomes overwhelming. Because this is a measure of its high probability. It is not like gravity, which will always act in the same way. You are looking for absolute truths. In the science of global warming (Not Climate Change. This is spin doctored term) there are no absolutes. You act on the most likely predictions. If you don’t act, then that is a decision contrary to, and not supported by the science.

            What you quote is common denier dogma and it is always wrong. Research the ‘Scientific Method” here.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

            The second error is you cite examples, like record lows temperatures, or the Sochi winter olympic games prediction, which I personally thought was a stupid prediction. They are called anecdotes and have no scientific weight. Stuff like, “My dad said it was hotter in the 1960′s than now, so there is no such thing as global warming.” Anecdotes.

            I hope this helps in your understanding of the topic, and therefore, the need to act urgently.

          • Harry,

            Glad you are engaging in debate.

            You are making a couple of basic mistakes.

            You are confusing climate with weather. Both are complex and have an number of feedbacks but you keep pointing to weather events rather than looking at the long term trends which is what climate scientists do. Climate is measure over decades and across the whole earth. So you can not point to one town or even one country without looking at the big picture. Especially as the high temp in one area can lead to the colder than average in another.
            Your analogy of the apple makes the mistake of assuming that all science is that simple or straight forward. Many things in science will not give as precise results that does not mean they are not correct. For example Astronomy deals in part with features of the Sun. I’m sure we can both agree that Astronomy is a science and yet scientists studying the Sun study sun spots, If I looked at the Sun today I might see one though. Am I then entitled to say sun spots don’t exist or astronomy is rubbish. No because the they have looked at the patterns for a very long time and have proposed hypotheses for formation of Sun spots and then developed testing equipment to test these and what we know now is summation of all that work. They can predict within known margins of error how likely sun spots are to be there at any particular time and testing over decades has established the accuracy of this data. No-one denies this because it works.

            If anything our climate is better understood, better measured etc. But yes there are well understood situations where temperature in one area can be low and the average be high.

            To your specific point of the winter Olympics. It seems you may have misunderstood my statement in the previous post. Higher water temps will when it meets with colder air cause greater than average snow fall the water after all only gets evaporated if it is warm over an ocean somewhere, the more warm the more this will happen, until the overall temp is too high for the water to freeze to snow. This does not mean it will be like this over the whole planet. Climate scientists average out the temp over the whole planet. So saying USA had more cold snaps that last year means nothing until you compare everywhere else. When you do, you find the temp is going up again and again, yes it will sometimes pause for a few year before going up again but the trend is very, very clear.

          • You are confusing climate with weather.

            The scientific basis of all eco-argument is that science can explain the past and present temperature of the planet and by using computer models science can project Earth’s likely future temperature. However the problem is that for many years now, observations of temperature have deviated from projected models. The fact is that the Earth is not as warm as it was once expected to be. Now environmentals being human have a natural loathing for admitting errors and some have continued to deny this deviation, even though it is reluctantly being accepted by mainstream scientific journals. Ironically, I guess this could be called an example of the progress of science. Problem is that this has proven to be an inconvenient truth to the political agenda linked to the climate-change narrative at Dawkins World. So in response, it is not surprising to find many theories set to explain away such a deviation.

            Your analogy of the apple makes the mistake of assuming that all science is that simple or straight forward. Many things in science will not give as precise results that does not mean they are not correct.

            Irrelevant. What is science if not the quest for certainty. Complexity does not alter anything.

            To your specific point of the winter Olympics. It seems you may have misunderstood my statement in the previous post. Higher water temps will when it meets with colder air cause greater than average snow fall the water after all only gets evaporated if it is warm over an ocean somewhere, the more warm the more this will happen, until the overall temp is too high for the water to freeze to snow. This does not mean it will be like this over the whole planet. Climate scientists average out the temp over the whole planet. So saying USA had more cold snaps that last year means nothing until you compare everywhere else. When you do, you find the temp is going up again and again, yes it will sometimes pause for a few year before going up again but the trend is very, very clear.

            What you have here is at best a hypothesis, at worst an educated guess. It’s not the only one on the market and the progress of science is strewn like an ancient desert trail with the bleached skeletons of discared theories which once seemed to possess eternal life.

          • Harry Scientific American is a fine publication but when people on this site talk about peer review journals they are generally talking about reading the papers the scientists have published themselves in journals like nature. Try google scholar. Scientific American publishes articles that are often derived from these journals and are geared towards the general public. That said the article you quote does not disagree with anything I have claimed. In fact it explains what you see are contradictory evidence very well I suggest you read it over.

            You have clearly never looked at a graph showing the upward trend and are again trying to make a complex system fit into the simple model you have of it in your mind. The graphs over many decades show the same pattern rapid rising temps followed by short pauses followed by rapid rising temps when you see this pattern over time (that is look at the whole graph and don’t cherry pick a few years to suit yourself) the trend is very very clear. This is why we keep saying climate is different from weather you need to look at the trend over decades. All I can do is suggest you look at the information in the actual scientific papers and see what is being actually claimed.

            Irrelevant. What is science if not the quest for certainty. Complexity does not alter anything.

            Wrong. Science is not the quest for certainty in fact one of the few things science has discovered with any certainty is you’ll never get it. What they do do is calculate very accurately their level of uncertainty, these are called error bars and most graphs in scientific papers will show these or if quoting figures you might see a measurement like 150kg +-5kg. There is a very specific way of working through you data to ascertain exactly how certain you can be. In terms of my point is you analogy is dealing with a falling apple which is a simple situation and you are expecting the same level of prediction out of climate scientists. This is a ridiculous comparison, it is like saying medicine is completely wrong because they cannot get a 100% cure rate there are just too many factors to control to make it anything like that precise. Climate scientists have been very clear about exactly to what level of precision they are confident in their predictions and have consistently been found to if anything be hedging on the low side.

            What you have here is at best a hypothesis, at worst an educated
            guess. It’s not the only one on the market and the progress of science
            is strewn like an ancient desert trail with the bleached skeletons of
            discared theories which once seemed to possess eternal life.

            Good, you have made a specific claim. Now back it up. What I have said is consistent with both experiment and weather predictions made every day. Let’s go through a couple of simple ones.

            Snow is made of frozen water.
            Lift a bucket of water let’s say 5 litres level with your shoulders. How long can you hold it there? Hard isn’t it and yet you need to explain how millions of tonnes of it gets up into the air if not through the mechanisms understood by every weatherman and climate scientist. The suns heat does it. Don’t believe me put a litre of water in the freezer and another in an open pot on the stove. I bet I can tell you which will evaporate first.
            Warm Moist air when it comes into contact with cooler air causes the the water vapour to condense.

            This is how clouds form, ever notice that clouds tend to form with the same base height, this is the dew point where the air temp has dropped sufficiently to condense the water vapour into tiny droplets. If that cooler air is below zero degrees C then it will become ice crystals – snow. You can test this by placing a saucer with some ice to make the saucer cool and hold it over the pot you are evaporating your water over you will notice droplets of water drip off the bottom of the saucer this is the water vapour condensing. Because this works every time and it is used to predict weather events accurately we call it a theory.

            Now for your alternative hypothesis. Please include a link to the peer reviewed literature in a respectable scientific journal. Let us have the debate.

  2. harry Jul 19, 2014 at 2:25 am

    Now, here’s something you won’t read on Dawkins World…

    Global climate variations have been discussed here on many occasions – along with the silly claims and false conclusions, of the scientifically illiterate, who write articles, or repeat nonsense.

    Cold facts: More record lows than highs in USA in 2013.

    The effects of climate change, a more energetic and mobile atmosphere, and more extreme weather, means more heat-waves, droughts, floods, more powerful hurricanes, and more extreme cold spells, LOCALLY and REGIONALLY.

    For the first time in 20 years, the USA saw more record cold temperatures than record hot temperatures in 2013.

    Parts of Western Europe had the Jet-Stream direct Arctic air on them producing record low temperatures the previous winter. Last winter the Arctic airflow was over North America, while the UK was exceptionally warm and mild.

  3. Hello Harry.

    I think you’re probably a victim of confirmation bias.

    Taking one year in isolation is useless, climate chaos or weather weirding as certain scientists have begun to call it, happens over decades and is a matter of fluctuations with an overall incremental increase in temperature.

    Further, the weather patterns vary across the globe. In the UK for instance we have four principal influences emanating from the Atlantic, Africa, Eastern Europe and the Arctic, each with distinctively different characteristics.

    If one of those systems gets stuck over us for a prolonged period the result is an extreme season; and that’s all it is.

    Evidence of global warming comes from geological and palaeontological records going back tens or hundreds of thousands of years and longer, which tell us that we are living through the most prolonged and hottest period of warming in the life of the planet; it has gone beyond any previous parameters and, could take a thousand years to right itself.

    Added to which are the findings of physics, meteorology, oceanography, etc, and all the arrows point in the same direction.

    Those same records also tell us, of course, about the many ice ages which have occurred, because as we all know, climate change has always happened.

    I don’t think any evidence has been found of a previous industrial revolution though.

    Plucking stuff down off the net isn’t helpful, because most of it is self serving garbage.

    Have a nice day Harry.

    • Evidence of global warming comes from geological and palaeontological records going back tens or hundreds of thousands of years and longer, which tell us that we are living through the most prolonged and hottest period of warming in the life of the planet; it has gone beyond any previous parameters and, could take a thousand years to right itself.

      Hello Stafford, sorry but this highlighted statement simply isnt true. There’s a great website by palaeogeographic modeller Christopher Scotese that can give you an initial idea on global climate trends over geological history. From a quick glance you’ll see that we are currently living through a peroid of cold climatic conditions that are significantly cooler in fact than most of the climatic conditions experienced throughout the majority of the life of the planet.

      If you’re interested I’d recommend the Earth history section of the Scotese website as well – the palaeogeographic reconstructions are a very good for illustrating the evolving continents through time (there are far more detailed reconstructions out there but these are a great introduction).

  4. I see the backward and stupid Australian government is still stooging for the carbon polluters!

    Australia votes to repeal carbon tax
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-28339663
    Australia’s Senate has voted to repeal the carbon tax, a levy on the biggest polluters passed by the previous Labor government.

    Prime Minister Tony Abbott, whose Liberal-National coalition beat Labor in an election last year, had made the repeal a central aim of his government.

    Politicians have been locked in a fierce row about the tax for years.

    Labor says it helps to combat climate change, but the Liberals claim it penalises legitimate businesses.

    Students of basic logic, might be able to spot, that legislators legitimising pollution, and then claiming to be “supporting the legitimate businesses causing the pollution”, as a reason, – is irrational circular thinking!

    The Australian Senate voted by 39 to 32 votes to repeal the tax.

    Introduced in July 2012, it charges the 348 highest polluters A$23 (£13; $22.60) for every tonne of greenhouse gases they produce.

    ‘Bereft of policy’

    Australia is the developed world’s worst polluter per head of population. But critics, including Mr Abbott, said that the tax cost jobs and forced energy prices up.

    Well spotted!!!
    It raises the prices of dirty polluting energy systems, and makes them less competitive with preferable cleaner options, which ought to be rapidly creating new jobs replacing the dirty ones! Who would have thunk it???

    He says he plans to replace it with a A$2.55bn taxpayer-funded plan under which industries will be paid to reduce emissions and use cleaner energy.

    It would have been more effective to leave the carbon tax in place to generate the income to pay to develop cleaner industries and low-carbon systems.

    Australia is well placed to make extensive use of molten-salt solar thermal systems and in some areas tidal power.

    His coalition does not hold a majority in the Senate but the repeal went through with the support of senators from mining tycoon Clive Palmer’s Palmer United Party.

    No surprises there then!! Profiteering polluters and their stooges united!!

    • Sally MacManns blog on “Tracking Abbott’s wreckage” (Sheepdogs can be found there, too) is a good place to find more of the bogans calumnies. His latest, on topic, is to strip the benefit financially of home owners solar panel installation by removing the energy trading certificates that reduced the price to the purchaser.

    • All true Alan and more. As I type this, I have a paper bag over my head. Ohhhh the shame.

      But wait folks, there’s more. I can recommend the links posted by Reckless Monkey below to Background Briefing and Four Corners. Award winning journalist constantly from these two programs.

      The Australian Government has this policy of “Direct Action” to reduce carbon. In truth, it is a spin doctors dream to say they are doing something, when in fact, they will do nothing. Our Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, is on public record saying that global warming, “Is a load of crap”

      Background Briefing revealed this morning that the government has given a grant to a person already mentioned in the Independent Commission on Corruption as having issues to answer in relation to coal deals, that they are going to try and produce a “diesel” engine that runs on a slurry of powdered coal and water. Yes folks. We here in Australia have a government that thinks like this.

      You will be able to spot rational Australians at International airports around the world, by the paper bags they wear in public.

    • A. Jul 19, 2014 at 8:45 am

      What is an “air molecule”?

      CO2, O2, O3 etc.

      http://www.eo.ucar.edu/basics/wx_1_b_1.html

      The air in our atmosphere is composed of molecules of different gases. The most common gases are nitrogen (78%), oxygen (about 21%), and argon (almost 1%). Other molecules are present in the atmosphere as well, but in very small quantities.

      While the composition doesn’t change much as you travel up through the lower layers of the atmosphere, what does change is the number of molecules. As you travel higher, the air molecules become less plentiful.

      Although dominantly the same composition, there is a very important chemical difference within the stratosphere. For it is within this layer that the highest concentrations of ozone molecules reside. In the stratosphere, ozone molecules — three oxygen atoms bonded together– prevent some of the Sun’s most intense rays from reaching the Earth’s surface.

  5. A. Jul 19, 2014 at 9:16 am

    From a dictionary: mol·e·cule – a group of atoms bonded together ….
    Therefore air is not a molecule.

    The air of the atmosphere is a very large collection of assorted molecules.

    The OP quotes – “every 1 million air molecules. Not “a” molecule”.

    As I listed earlier:

    CO2, = One carbon atom bonded to 2 oxygen atoms.

    O2, = 2 oxygen atoms bonded together.

    O3 = 3 oxygen atoms boded together.

    Why not read the educational link and quote I provided, immediately above your comment.

    BTW:- This is a science site – and this is VERY basic chemistry.

    • Agreed but one has to admit that the choice of words in the sentence:

      As you travel higher, the air molecules become less plentiful.

      … can be confusing for someone not familiar with basic chemistry. The author could have done a better job considering that the article is aimed at people who are new to science.

  6. harry’s views sound very similar to those of climate expert Donald Trump who think that winter disproves global warming. Of course most of the Earth’s surface is covered with water, and sure enough, that is where most of the warming is going on.

    I notice harry hasn’t answered any of the physics presented to him. We’re waiting harry. Take your time and come back with a well reasoned argument as to why the vast majority of climate scientists are wrong.

    I won’t hold my breath !

    • Yes but we’re not talking science here, we’re talking statistics. And the good news is that Dawkins World has created a new logical fallacy. I shall call it the Dawkins Fallacy. This is where statistical data from a scientific institute is deemed to be more accurate or more true than statistical data from a non-scientific institute.

      • I shall call it the Dawkins Fallacy. This is where statistical data from a scientific institute is deemed to be more accurate or more true than statistical data from a non-scientific institute.

        And here endeth the sermon fellow rationalists. This is the problem with Homo Sapiens. How anyone can rationally think like this, then post it in a public forum is beyond me. It’s almost one of those joke oxymoron’s, like “Military Intelligence”

        By its very essence, data generated in a non scientific way MUST be a lesser probabive value than data generated using the scientific method. The scientific method is the process whereby Harry is able to use a computer, and makes such comments. The scientific method has produced the conditions that allow Harry to exist in first world luxury. Sadly, the scientific method wasn’t passed on to Harry during his education. That is the failure here.

        • By its very essence, data generated in a non scientific way MUST be a lesser probabive value than data generated using the scientific method.

          When compiling statistics, I suggest you use mathematics, but please don’t let me interrupt, do carry on.

          • I suggest you use mathematics,

            Are you suggesting that mathematics is somehow different or independent of science. Please explain. I must have missed that during my studies.

            Maths and science use pure logic. No ideology. No prejudice. No “Free Market Can solve everything.” No, “God told we can use all we like of earth’s resources forever.” No, “It’s a communist conspiracy run by the UN so scientists can get more grants and buy a new Toyota Camry.”

            I would like you to tell me why maths and science are diametrically opposed and independent of each other. You clearly hint at such a view. Just spell it out and tell us why global warming is NOT happening.

      • harry Jul 19, 2014 at 10:29 pm

        Yes but we’re not talking science here,

        It has been obvious from various posts that YOU are not talking about science, and show no understanding of what science is! Science is a methodology from investigation producing EVIDENCE of reality and how the real world works.

        That’s the thing about science! The evidence is there for those who look for it!

        we’re talking statistics.

        Or in the case of your assertions, made up figures which have no connection to anything in the real world except propagandist campaigns of disinformation.

        “Statistics” without a scientific evidence basis, are just made-up fantasy figures!

        And the good news is that Dawkins World has created a new logical fallacy. I shall call it the Dawkins Fallacy.

        Still making up nonsensical claims illustrating the psychological projection of your profound ignorance of the subject?

        This is where statistical data from a scientific institute is deemed to be more accurate or more true than statistical data from a non-scientific institute.

        That is because the “non-scientific institute(s) you quote are the propagandist bunch of liars who made up nonsense about tobacco and cancer for the tobacco industry, and are now making up deceptive nonsense for coal, oil, and gas industries.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merchants_of_Doubt

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_denial

        harry Jul 20, 2014 at 4:52 am

        When compiling statistics, I suggest you use mathematics,

        I though even you might have spotted that climate scientists use a very high level of detailed mathematics. (real measurements like “Parts per million”)

        Mathematics is of course a scientific discipline, not a badge of authority for silly assertions, in the same way the fallacies are are perversion of logic and not a made-up label to stick on to other people’s rational arguments!

        but please don’t let me interrupt, do carry on.

        Did you have something of consequence to say? So far you have simply sat in denial and indicated a lack of any knowledge of the subject! – Zilch!!! (Greenhouse effect, temperature measurements, heat flows, thermal capacities, climate records over tens, hundreds, thousand and millions of years, atmospheric energy, new technologies??)

        Climate change has a whole list of issues in changes in methods of energy generation, efficient use of energy, and changes in industry and agriculture, all to adapt human habitation to a more sustainable level.

        • Alan4discussion Jul 20, 2014 at 5:33 am

          Further to my earlier comment on “Merchants of doubt”, it seems efforts are being made to hold some of them to account for their damaging lies!

          http://www.veooz.com/news/sHLJQrq.html

          RJ Reynolds vows to fight $23.6B in damages

          The nation’s No. 2 cigarette maker is vowing to fight a jury verdict of $23.6 billion in punitive damages in a lawsuit filed by the widow of a longtime smoker who died of lung cancer. One of the widow’s attorneys said the verdict Friday night sends a powerful message to tobacco companies. “The jury wanted to send a statement that tobacco cannot continue to lie to the American people and the American government about the addictiveness of and the deadly chemicals in their cigarettes,” said Christopher Chestnut, one of the attorneys representing Cynthia Robinson.

          Perhaps someday similar claims will be made against the AGW liars for profit?

  7. I guess that the moderators took out the post that I saw before I went out about how “Mars has an atmosphere that is mostly CO2 yet Mars is much colder than Earth (minus 80, I think he said) therefore CO2 does not cause global warming.”

    While the utter silliness of this beggars belief, I regret its being deleted, if only to show the extent of the foolishness that is actually confused with reason in the ranks of the deniers.

    In case he is still lurking, he might like to consider the facts that Mars is 188,300,000 kilometers further from the big bright thing in the sky than we are, and the CO2 while dominant is really hardly there at all, in fact atmospheric pressure at the surface of Mars is 0.6% that of ours.

    Please come back when you have an argument that is worth a response.

    • I guess that the moderators took out the post that I saw before I went
      out about how “Mars has an atmosphere that is mostly CO2 yet Mars is
      much colder than Earth (minus 80, I think he said) therefore CO2 does
      not cause global warming.”

      Not guilty.

      The mods

      • Fair enough. I guess he must have deleted it himself, I did not realise under the new format that one could actually do that. A flash of reality on his part, maybe. Still a pity, as I had my kennel of attack trained adjectives ready to pounce!

        PS, Hey mods, what chance of getting an explanatory run through of the new format and it’s “features?” If we knew more about it, we might dislike it less.

  8. I’ll offer a few further points. To begin, I’d like to raise a point that might actually be an interesting one to discuss. This website has been accused – by one anonymous climate ignoramus, but accused nonetheless – of being selective in what climate/weather details we publish. By “publish” I mean “copy-pasted from another website”, which is what we do. Now people here will happily say, “but some points are more scientifically valid than others”. But now comes my question. Given that we have a long history of republishing ridiculous pro-religious screeds, why do we rarely republish ridiculous anti-AGW screeds? (We do it occasionally; I remember a good example in November 2011).

    I find it amusing that we’re linked to an article on the Gore effect by someone who seems unaware a late subsection completely destroys the idea’s credibility. It should also go without saying that climate change claims stand or fall based on the full body of statistics, not the subset thereof that is at not only the same time as climate conferences, speeches etc. but also in the same place.

    User harry has alleged we fallaciously assume scientists’ statistics are more valid than those of their detractors. Contra harry, there are specific reasons for finding some statistical arguments more convincing than others. Alan4discussion has already linked to a previous discussion thread in which deniers’ cherry-picking is observable, and replies therein to Odo give several examples of these statistical niceties. Our responses thus far to harry have also explained several such niceties for the “discussion” at hand, but I hesitate to use the term discussion because harry hasn’t addressed any of our points. (There has not, for example, been any response to my explanation of the statistical implications of record high vs record low counts.) And harry’s “why won’t you mention this one statistic?” query boils down to a simple fact: there is such a thing as not seeing the forest for the trees.

    • It should also go without saying that climate change claims stand or fall based on the full body of statistics, not the subset thereof that is at not only the same time as climate conferences, speeches etc. but also in the same place.

      I wasn’t aware of this detail but I think it speaks volumes about the mandate of these “merchants of doubt”. It sounds to me like the tactical equivalent of someone constantly interrupting or speaking out of turn during a debate in an effort to drown out an opponent’s arguments in noise. A move usually indicative of a pathetic lack of valid counter-arguments.

      These people think this is a game and that big money is what’s at stake. Such depressing blindness and ill-will. Anyway, thanks for this small but quite pertinent bit of information.

  9. harry Jul 20, 2014 at 5:22 am

    You’re right. Mathematics and science is the same thing. Can I go now?

    You have now learned something. This is a science site where we discuss evidenced reality using carefully checked scientific investigations.
    Some of us hoped you might learn something else.

  10. harry Jul 22, 2014 at 1:15 am

    You are confusing climate with weather.

    The scientific basis of all eco-argument is that science can explain the past and present temperature of the planet and by using computer models

    Wrong! The computer models give the local details. The past record and projected global average temperatures are based on objective records and projections of the graphs, based on actual measurements of heat inflow, heat outflow, and temperatures, at thousands of points all over the planet.

    science can project Earth’s likely future temperature.

    It certainly can to quite good levels of accuracy – while deniers certainly show they have no idea – usually not even any idea what the measurements are, or how to make measurements.

    However the problem is that for many years now, observations of temperature have deviated from projected models.

    Yep! Global averages have been significantly higher than conservative estimates expected, with local variations becoming more extreme as expected.

    The fact is that the Earth is not as warm as it was once expected to be.

    This is nonsense! It is hotter than previously expected.

    Now environmentals being human have a natural loathing for admitting errors and some have continued to deny this deviation,

    This is whimsical rubbish! Environmental scientists have revised their figures when new measurements showed the planet was heating faster than expected earlier.

    even though it is reluctantly being accepted by mainstream scientific journals.

    First of all, The Scientific American is a magazine, NOT a Scientific Journal.

    Secondly you simply illustrate that you cannot, or will not, understand the article you have linked, and have no idea what you are talking about.

    It is quite clear that the warming continues and that article clearly states that any “pause” is ONLY IN THE RATE OF RISE IN ATMOSPHERIC TEMPERATURES, not in the average temperature of the whole planet or the heat increase:-

    It’s true that Willis and nearly every other climate scientist dismiss the idea that global warming has paused. Yet the fact remains that average surface temperatures worldwide have not increased since around the turn of the century.

    To the casual observer, the lack of warming at the Earth’s surface, contrasted to climate scientists’ insistence that the planet is still warming, might seem like a conundrum.

    As scientists like Willis explain, though, most of the extra heat trapped by greenhouse gases does not warm the Earth’s surface anyway.

    Why do rising sea levels ignore the pause?
    “Over 90 percent of the heat that we trap … is warming the oceans,” Willis said.

    So as a measure of global warming, surface temperatures are not a good yardstick, because the atmosphere can only hold a small percentage of the heat that is trapped, he said.

    Rather, the oceans should be the primary barometer of global climate change.

    And they are certainly changing. Sea levels are going up “like gangbusters,” Willis said.

    The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change physical science draft report, released in late September, said it is a near certainty that rates of sea-level rise — pushed up largely because warmer water expands — have accelerated over the last two centuries.

    The IPCC also reported it was very likely that rates of sea-level rise from 1993 to 2010 had almost doubled, from a 0.067-inch-per-year average rate for the 20th century to a 0.125-inch-per-year average rate.

    To Willis and other scientists, this is a clear signal that global warming continues.

    “Sea levels are still rising; the ice sheets are still melting; the oceans are still getting more acidic,” Willis said. “All of that stuff is still going on just as it has, unabated.”

    If the heat continues to rise, where is it?
    Even if they don’t think global warming has paused, scientists are still interested in learning why the rate of surface warming over the last 10 to 15 years has been much slower than in the decades before, even as levels of greenhouse gases continue to increase.

    Some of us actually READ science articles, beyond giving a biased personal answer of “YES”, to the question in the title!

    Why not read the links on this earlier comment and learn about the way forward?

    http://richarddawkins.net/2014/07/climate-records-shattered-in-2013/#li-comment-148280

  11. @harry – Now environmentals being human have a natural loathing for admitting errors and some have continued to deny this deviation, even though it is reluctantly being accepted by mainstream scientific journals.

    Where are you copying this made-up scientifically illiterate garbage from?

    For those who want to know what the expert scientific opinion of thousands of scientists who are making actual measurements and recording them in papers published in reputable SCIENCE JOURNALS is:-

    http://skepticalscience.com/97-percent-consensus-cook-et-al-2013.html

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