Temperature Charts Reveal Astounding Cluelessness Among Top Scientists On Real Global Mean Temperature!

We’ve got to keep the planet from warming 2°C since industrialization began, the AGW alarmist scientists warn us. So far we are told that manmade greenhouse gases have warmed the planet 0.8°C since about 1880, which means it must not warm more than another 1.2°C.

Hoffmann’s video shows that nobody has a clue as to what the real global mean temperature is. Estimates vary over a whopping 1.5°C range!

Rainer Hoffmann of solarkritik.de has put together an outstanding montage of video clips depicting various global mean temperature charts used by top scientists and media. What they reveal is truly stunning: the world’s top climate scientists have no clue what the real global mean temperature really is. As you will see, figures range from 14.5°C to 16.0°C!

First, it is important to know that according to scientists, the greenhouse effect adds 33°C to the temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere near the surface. That’s the consensus that the first 8 minutes of the video clearly shows. Wthout greenhouse gases, the temperature of the planet would be a frigid -18°C (0°F). Thanks to the greenhouse effect, the planet’s surface warms to a mean of 15°C.

So using the 2°C target, the globe therefore should not warm up beyond 15°C + 2°C = 17°C. Over 17°C, all hell will break loose they warn us.

Most climate scientists agree that temperatures have risen 0.5° since the 1950s, and 0.3°C from 1880 to 1950. So that means the global mean temperatures should appear as follows:
Today: 15.8°
1950: 15.3°C
1880: 15°C

Right? Well, it turns out IPCC scientists are all over the board when it comes to these figures and nobody really knows. What follows next are examples of what the German public has been hearing over the last few years from leading scientists and media. Rainer Hoffmann put together a number of videos depicting charts used by scientists and media. Now hold on to your seat!

10:56, Hans Schellnhuber on German public television, 11/2009:
Today: 15.3°C
1950: 14.8°C
1880: 14.5°C

11:40, Stefan Rahmstorf, chart implies:
Today: 15.5°C
1950: 15.0°C
1880: 14.7°C

12:25, IPCC 2007 4AR (brace yourself!)
Today: 14.5°C
1950: 14.0°C
1880: 13.7°C

According to the IPCC, we still haven’t reached natural greenhouse temperature of 15°C! All those “weather extremes” we’ve had over the recent years occurred below the natural greenhouse temperature! So how could it be CO2?

14:20, ZDF German public television, 12/2009
Today: 14.5°C
1950: 14.0°C
1880: 13.7°C

15:31, IPCC lead scientist Mojib Latif, 03/2012
Today: 14.5°C
1950: 14.0°C
1880: 13.7°C

15:50, Book by Schellnhuber & Rahmstorf, 2006
Today: 14.5°C
1950: 14.0°C
1880: 13.7°C

Here we see that global mean temperature for Schellnhuber (see above) has gone up 0.8°C in just 3 years! Now that’s fast.

16:16, Der Spiegel, 1988
Today: 15.5°C
1950: 15.0°C
1880: 14.7°C

18:20, Ravenburger children’s book, 2010
Today: 16.0°C
1950: 15.5°C
1880: 15.2°C

According to Ravenburger, we’re now down to our last degree before we all die!

It gets even more bizarre. The video at the 20:20 mark shows Environment Minister Peter Altmaier saying in July, 2012, that the target was to limit global warming to 2 percent!

Finally at the 22:00 mark, Hans Schellnhuber takes the cake saying in 2008 that if the world’s population reaches 9 billion, the world will explode!

If anything, all this shows that leading IPCC scientists have no idea what the real mean global temperature is. They’re making things up. Hoffmann only looked at charts used in Germany. Imagine what we would find if looked all over the world.

Next time you see a temperature chart, check the vertical temperature axis. You may find more surprises.

Would somebody please tell me WTF the real global mean temperature is? This whole thing is just a total circus.

Hats off to Rainer Hoffmann for this observation.

Reaction From Germany On Watts’s Press Release: “Shocking Development, Could Have Global Relevance”

German geologist Dr. Sebastian Lüning and chemist Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt react to Anthony Watts’s press release concerning the quality of US temperature data at their blog.

Unlike myelf (I expected an unsurvivable nuclear bomb to be dropped), Sebastian Lüning and Fritz Vahrenholt find the implications of the new findings to be potentially devatsting. They write (excerpt):

A Shocking Development: Warming in the USA over the last 30 years is only half as much as previously assumed

Anthony Watts did not disappoint. Indeed it is about the release of an important new publication that involves the warming trend of the last 30 years. We had already introduced that problem here at this blog a few days ago (see our blog article “The wonderful world of temperature data corrections: And suddenly the trend reversed…“). It gets down to how justified are ‘corrections’ to the official data? We had reported that the data changes oddly always produced a signficant acceleration in warming with respect to the raw data, even though factors like the urban heat island effect intuitively suggest the oppsite correction is needed.

Authors in addition to Anthony Watts included Stephen McIntyre and John Christy. McIntyre is known because of his impressive error analyses of the famous hockey stick digram. Christy is a renowned expert for satellite temperature data at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. The manuscript will soon be submitted for publication by a journal. […}

[…] The result of the new study is shocking: Instead of correcting downwards temperatures that were heated by the urban heat island effect, the official US administration offices apparently corrected data from qualitively reliable stations upwards, which appears to be unjustifiable. If the result is confirmed, then it would be a shocking development. The warming in the USA over the last years would be far less rapid than what has always been assumed. And because similar errors are supected elsewhere, the issue could quickly gain global relevance.”

I asked Dr. Lüning to comment more on why this could have global implications. He kindly replied by e-mail:

Bit by bit others who might jump onto the train will now use the same methodology worldwide and will probably find that it really affects the global curve.”

Lüning and Vahrenholt also provide the press release in German at their site.

Take it from them; they’re experts. This could very well have global consequences. One thing is sure: It’s a an utter embarassment for the NOAA, and the perceived reliability of US and international data will be in question for years to come. Faith in the surface station data is crumbling.

 

The Self-Inflicted Delusions Of Australian Shrinks – On Climate Skeptics And Conspiracies

A couple of days ago I wrote a piece about a paper by some Australian shrinks claiming that skeptics are prone to believe conspiracy theories, like the 1969 moonlanding being staged in Hollywood.

But Marc Morano reminds us that there is a small problem with their assertion. Some of America’s most prominent skeptics are former astronauts who actually walked on the moon: Jack Schmitt and Buzz Aldrin. Gee, do you think they believe it was all done in Hollywood, too?

Please read Marc’s piece from 2009.

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Oops! Shades of Gore: Joe Romm’s research comes up short: Unknowingly Uses Skeptical NASA Moonwalker Schmitt to Rail on Global Warming Skeptics
By Marc Morano

Former Clinton Administration official and climate fear promoter Joe Romm — followed in the footsteps of former Vice President Al Gore — by linking skeptics of man-made global warming fears to those who believe the 1969 moon landing was staged. (Note: Romm and Climate Depot’s Morano debated global warming in March 2009. See: Morano debates former Clinton Official Romm – April 6, 2009).

The embarrassing problem for Romm is that he — unknowingly — used one of the most prominent global warming skeptics, NASA moonwalker Harrison ‘Jack” Schmitt, in an attempt to “prove” climate skeptics are akin to those who believe the moonlanding was staged.

Schmitt, who flew on the Apollo 17 mission, declared in 2008:

“The ‘global warming scare’ is being used as a political tool to increase government control over American lives, incomes and decision making. It has no place in the Society’s activities.”

But Romm, in his July 20, 2009 article railing on climate skeptics, failed to do basic research on moonwalker Schmitt’s skeptical climate views. Romm approvingly cited Schmitt’s scientific views in an article at Climate Progress that was intending to smear climate skeptics.

Romm asserted: ‘I’m just drawing the painfully straight line from the moon hoax people to the climate hoax people.’ (Romm followed in Gore’s footsteps: See: Moonwalkers Defy Gore: NASA Astronaut Dr. Buzz Aldrin and Jack Schmitt reject global warming fears: Defy Gore’s Claim That Climate Skeptics Are Akin To Those Who Believe Moon Landing was ‘Staged’ – July 3, 2009).’

Romm approvingly quoted Schmitt rejecting moon landing conspiracy theories.

‘If people decide they’re going to deny the facts of history…(continue reading…)
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A final note: Reader Paul Matthews left a comment listing the 8 blogs the Australian shrinks used to get participants in their survey:

http://www.skepticalscience.com
http://tamino.wordpress.com
http://bbickmore.wordpress.com
http://www.trunity.net/uuuno/blogs/
http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/
http://profmandia.wordpress.com/
http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/
http://hot-topic.co.nz/

Need we say more? Now we really know who belongs on the couch.

 

Anthony Watts Drops A Big Bomb – That Makes A Little Bang

It’s a definite bang, but nothing like I was expecting. Let’s just say it was a little bang out here in Europe.

Anthony Watts shut down his popular WUWT website Friday because “something happened” and he needed time to prepare a “major announcement” that he was sure would “attract a broad global interest due to its controversial and unprecedented nature”. Because of “the magnitude of this event” he was even able to convince his wife that it was necessary to suspend vacation plans. Now that sounds big!

The press release excerpt:

A reanalysis of U.S. surface station temperatures has been performed using the recently WMO-approved Siting Classification System devised by METEO-France’s Michel Leroy. The new analysis demonstrates that reported 1979-2008 U.S. temperature trends are spuriously doubled, with 92% of that over-estimation resulting from erroneous NOAA adjustments of well-sited stations upward.

Other findings:

– Poorly sited station trends are adjusted sharply upward, and well sited stations are adjusted upward to match the already-adjusted poor stations.

· Well sited rural stations show a warming nearly three times greater after NOAA adjustment is applied.

· Urban sites warm more rapidly than semi-urban sites, which in turn warm more rapidly than rural sites.”

Admittedly, my expectations concerning the implications were surely too high. It’s nothing that we haven’t already suspected or known. But it is good that this issue has been examined scientifically, formally and published. It’s now certified that US temps have been massively overstated and that the NOAA needs to clean up its act.

In summary:

1. Major announcement? Yes, but nothing like it was made out to be.
2. It’s of global interest? Some, but in Europe it’ll be pretty much ignored – local issue that does not change anything globally.
3. Controversial? For temperature record keeping at the NOAA, yes. But little global impact.
4. Unprecedented? Not really. It confirms what everyone expected. Temperature data are botched everywhere, every day.

This paper will put the NOAA on the defensive of course, at least for a little while. I don’t expect any of the German mainstream media to report on this, though. But I’ll keep my eyes peeled.

The announcement is big, but not that big. Some things could have been spared in the run up to the announcement.

And so the great global warming debate continues…

 

Anthony’s Announcement….Live Ticker

21:04 It’s there!

21:03: No earthquake so far here in Germany, no bright flashes – though we are having one heck of a shower right now – hopefully lightning will not knock out the power!

21.00 CET: Still no press release. Speculation has run wild since Friday.

20:57 CET: A few more minutes. Many of the climate science followers and bloggers are commenting over at Lucia’s Blackboard and McIntyre’s CA. McIntyre comments at LB that everyone should dial back expectations.

Australian Psychologists Now Claim Climate Science Skeptics Are The True Moon-Landing Conspiracy Theorists

Today some German warmist sites are busy touting a new paper authored by Lewandowsky et al in the journal Psychological Science: NASA faked the moon landing—therefore (climate) science is a hoax: An anatomy of the motivated rejection of science.

Paper now wants us to believe that it is the Bush-followers (Tea Party followers) who believe in the 9-11 and moon-landing conspiracies. (Photo: dbking, via Wikipedia)

According to the paper’s abstract (emphasis added):

We report a survey (N > 1100) of climate blog users to identify the variables underlying acceptance and rejection of climate science. Paralleling previous work, we find that endorsement of a laissez-faire conception of free-market economics predicts rejection of climate science (r is approx. 0.80 between latent constructs). Endorsement of the free market also predicted the rejection of other established scientific findings, such as the facts that HIV causes AIDS and that smoking causes lung cancer. We additionally show that endorsement of a cluster of conspiracy theories (e.g., that the CIA killed Martin-Luther King or that NASA faked the moon landing) predicts rejection of climate science as well as the rejection of other scientific findings, above and beyond endorsement of laissez-faire free markets. This provides empirical confirmation of previous suggestions that conspiracist ideation contributes to the rejection of science. Acceptance of science, by contrast, was strongly associated with the perception of a consensus among scientists.

So we have here is a study that attempts to stigmatise and marginalise anyone who questions the notion that trace gas CO2 modulates global temperature and storm intensity. Forget that global temps have not risen in 15 years and that 70% of the Holocene was warmer than it is today. And forget that some important ocean cycles were in their positive modes from from 1980 to 2000 and that solar activity during the 20th century was at its most intense level in all of the Holocene. On and on goes the list.

The other point is that climate skeptics are not the ones who are paranoid and obsessed with the notion that human lifestyles are pushing the planet over the brink. Skeptics are not the ones who become hysterical with every wind gust. The true nuts are the extreme warmists.

Warmist media pushed the junk 9/11 and moon-landing theories

Moreover, it was the “enlightened”, i.e. the warmist media, in Germany who zealously promoted the 9/11 and moon-landing conspiracies – all in  an effort to fan the flames of resentment against the USA during the Bush years. What follows are some examples of German television and media drugging up its viewers with the silly conspiracy theories.

Here’s a “documentary” questioning the moon-landing shown on warmist German television:

And here’s another:

And the following was delivered by the renowned, warmist Spiegel TV!

Or read all about it in print at the über-warmist Stern magazine here. These are just a few examples. All these above media outlets floating the whacko 9/11 and moonlanding theories were and are still fervently pushing AGW theory today. So let’s be clear who the real 9/11 and moon-landing kooks are: the same ones who think we can regulate climate and weather with a few molecules of CO2.

Of course, the documentaries above tried to give an impression of neutralality, but their true intentions were clear -it was to sow the seeds of anti-Americanism in the viewers’ minds.

Today in Germany, many of the purveyors of this twisted propaganda would like us to forget their involvement in this. After Obama became president, some even aired pieces debunking the conspiracy theories to clean the slate – but not before Bush left office. And today, as the above nutty psychology report shows, we see they are attempting make people believe that it is actually the Bush-followers (Tea Partiers) who are spreading nutjob conspiracy theories they themselves hatched earlier.

Should we be surprised? What else should we expect from those who are losing the debate and have no scruples about being dishonest?

 

What’s Watts Up To?

Anthony Watts, the king of skeptic climate science bloggers, made the unusual announcement yesterday that 1) blogging had been suspended until Sunday and 2) that he had something “controversial and unprecedented” to tell us.

The rest of us many backbenchers and observers, always hungry for any bit of news supporting our views, are now left to speculate 2 days long.

Here’s what we know:

1. It’s not something bad for him or his family. That’s good to know.

2. It’s nothing legal, political or social in nature.

…has nothing to do with FOIA issues or other sorts of political or social theories…”

But here we note Anthony left out the descriptive “scientific” and “business” terms. This narrows down the possibilities considerably. So is it scientific or business? Here’s what he writes originally:

…there will be a major announcement that I’m sure will attract a broad global interest due to its controversial and unprecedented nature.”

The key words to me here are global, controversial and unprecedented – especially telling is the word “controversial”. Well we know he tinkers around a lot and is inventive. But new products or innovation are rarely controversial, which therefore pretty much eliminates the possibility that it’s an exciting technical breakthrough, i.e. business-related.

And what we do not know:

Overall, that leaves that his “controversial and unprecedented” announcement is scientific in nature. Climate science today is controversial. Sounds to me like he has come up with hard results people aren’t going to like and someone big (like a renowned journal) has endorsed them.

Later he does seem to backpedal a bit on the implications of his announcement, writing that it has:

“…something to do with one of my many projects, it is still a ‘major announcement’ and it has important implications that I’m sure everyone will want to know about.”

Well, what is it that he has been working on for years that everyone will want to know about? Sounds a lot like it has something to do with his surface stations project, getting something published, or being appointed to an important position related to the subject. But surface stations have been pretty much covered and we know pretty much what there is to know about that.

So what’s left? There’s likely another topic he’s been researching and has not told us about yet, and has some surprising, hard results.

That’s my WAG. Next time, he should say nothing and just drop the bomb on us.

But now, until the bomb drops, we are left to speculate on what this “controversial and unprecedented” announcement of “global interest” could possibly be.

 

Extreme, Unusual Cold Deviation Of -20°K Now Occurring Over Antarctica

Cold temperatures are nothing unusual in Antarctic, especially in the wintertime. But one observer in the Internet here has noticed it’s been far colder than usual.

Shown above is the projected 2m temperature anomaly for Antarctica for 30 July until 6 August, 2012. Source: Dr. Ryan N. Maue.

The observer writes:

For weeks I’ve been observing extreme, unusual deviations from the mean by as much as -20°K. Even in Australia it’s been too cold. What’s the reason for this cold over there, the powerful Antarctic polar circulation?

While the media remains locally fixated on a warm June in the US, it is ignoring an extreme cold event in a region that is supposed to be a “canary in the coal mine”.

Note:
I’m a bit tied up right now, and so blogging will be on the light side until this weekend. If anyone has more on the Antarctic cold, let me know!

Leading Sociologists And Natural Scientists Reiterate Global Climate Policy Has Been A Debacle

Der Spiegel focuses again on failed international climate policy, and explores alternative policy paths being proposed by German sociologist Nico Stehr, and 13 other international authors of the Hartwell Paper, among them Roger A. Pielke Jr.

The Hartwell Paper is nothing new. It was first released in 2010 by the London School of Economics in cooperation with the University of Oxford. It was authored by 14 natural and social scientists from all over the world, among them Mike Hulme and Roger A. Pielke Jr.

But the fact that the paper is being brought up once again shows just how much everything is in disarray for the climate activists. When media outlets like Der Spiegel start having doubts, then you know the movement is in deep trouble. Spiegel begins with:

The UN climate conference in Berlin was a flop. Now there has to be a completely new start in international climate policy, says sociologist Nico Stehr.”

The UN, governments and activists have spent literally hundreds of billions of dollars on the senseless endeavor of trying to regulate the Earth’s temperature and taming storms by limiting emissions of a single trace gas. Not surprisingly, these attempts have failed completely, and never mind that temperatures have not risen in 15 years anyhow.

Spiegel writes:

The debacle is an immense chance for a climate policy to finally unfold. The main motivation of the Hartwell Paper:

1. Energy access for everyone;
2. Decarbonization, development of clean energy so that it is cheaper than fossil fuels;
3. Equip society so that it can cope with the risks and dangers associated with changing climate, whatever their cause may be.”

Clearly the Hartwell Paper authors propose a shift to more adaptation and less on mitigation. The Hartwell Paper supports decarbonization by promoting effective investment in other sources of energy so that they become cheaper than fossil fuels. There’s less focus on punishing environmental sinners.

What’s new here is that experts are once again asking: “When are you climate activists going to wake up and realize you’ve failed big time and that your plan has no chance of ever working in the future – no matter how hard you try?”

Nico Stehr is the owner of the Karl-Mannheim-Professur for cultural sciences at the Zeppelin University in Friedrichshafen. He is among Germany’s most renowned sociologists.

 

More Climate Change Alarmism – Now It’s The Vibrio Public Health Scare!

Awhile back I wrote about the climate alarmists’ latest tactic to get people scared about climate change – i.e., make it look like it’s a serious threat to public health.

Hat-tip: DirkH

Der Spiegel has wasted little time and has immediately pounced on the new paper appearing in Nature Climate Change, by Austin et al, which boldly claims man-made global warming “is reshaping the distribution of infectious disease across global scales”.

The authors illustrate possible associations between environmental changes in the Baltic area and the recent emergence of Vibrio infections. They also forecast future scenarios of the risk of infections with predicted warming trends. The authors don’t beat around the bush, implying that the Baltic, because it warmed 0.063–0.078 °C yr from 1982 (a cold time) to 2010 (a warm time), sea surface temperatures there may rise 7°C per century!

How scientific is that? The stock market went up 200 points last week, and so does that mean it will rise 10,000 points over the next year? Of course not. The silly extrapolation the authors imply reveals their true intent: to fan public fear. This paper is hardly above tabloid trash as far as quality goes.

Moreover, the authors think that 29 years of data (half a PDO or AMO oscillation) are enough to make a quantum leap of faith and to conclude:

This is among the first empirical evidence that anthropogenic climate change is driving the emergence of Vibrio disease in temperate regions through its impact on resident bacterial communities, implying that this process is reshaping the distribution of infectious diseases across global scales.”

That is just plain stupid. Where’s the science? What would these scientists think if we told them that CO2 and global temperature haven’t correlated in 15 years?

Of course the somewhat obviously dimwitted journalist at Der Spiegel took it in, hook, line and sinker. Der Spiegel warns:

Already more and more people are being infected in warm summers by Vibrio vulnificus, a contagion for wounds, diarrhea and blood poisoning an international team of scientists reported in “Nature Climate Change”. Also the very closely related Cholera bacterium , Vibrio Cholerae, is on the march.

During the extremely warm summers of 1994, 2003 and 2006 at the Baltic Sea coast, there were numerous reports of infected wounds and cases of Cholera. Alone in 2006, 67 people became infected while bathing or doing water sports; some even died.”

The authors add that the number of Vibrio infections will increase significantly, if the warming continues. Note there’s no mention that there’s been no real outbreak since 2006.

The authors also warn that more than 30 million people live near the Baltic Sea coast and that they, and cities like Stockholm and St. Petersburg, are all threatened.

So readers, you are urged to cancel your Baltic holidays and to spend them somewhere else – like the good old Mediterranean, where water temperatures are about 10°C warmer.

 

Summers Are Getting Cooler And Wetter, Germany’s Number 1 Daily Writes

German daily Bild, number one by circulation in Europe, plants more seeds of man-made global warming skepticism in an article today about this year’s really crappy wet and cool summer.

And just like the guy whose feet are too big for his bed, nothing seems to fit…”

While Bild asks how long the Azores high pressure system “Xerxes” will hold up and bring Germany the much welcome relief from all the cold and rain, the report also looks into long-term climate trends.

Bild poses the question: “Were summers of the last years really cooler, wetter and less freindly than before?”

To answer that question, Bild consulted wetter.net meteorologist Dominik Jung (a global warming believer). His answer:

It really is so. We took a look at the summer of the last 9 years. The tendency is that they were cooler and rainier than the long-term average.“

Normally a newspaper reporting on the summer’s weather would just leave it at that. But Bild takes the extra step and looks back at the summers over the last 2000 years and brings up Jan Esper’s recently published tree-ring study: Bild writes:

If you don’t believe Domink Jung, then we take a look at the longterm.analysis of an international tean of scientists. In it the scientists measured the wood density of trees and reconstructed the weather of the last 2000 years. Fact is: There is a cooling trend for the season that we call summer.

It has gotten about 0.3°C cooler each millenium. And we are feeling that trend today as well.”

So what is Bild telling its readers? I’d interpret it as: There’s nothing unusual about the currrent climate and over the long-term we are cooling.

Glad to see that a major media outlet in Germany is open to the broader climate picture. Very very few other media outlets have reported on the implications of Esper’s 2,000-year reconstruction.

Looks like Germany’s über-alarmist, closed-minded institutes, like Jochem Marotzke’s Max Planck Institute for Meteorology and John Schellnhuber’s Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research are going to have to go back to the drawing board and completely revamp their “climate models”. So far their projections have completely and massively diverged away from recorded observations.

And once again:


“It doesn’t matter how smart you are, or what your name is – it’s wrong. It’s that simple.”

Also very worthwile watching…on “vague theories”.

 

French Study: Mediterranean Storm Activity Linked To Solar Activity, Has Nothing To Do With CO2

Sebastian Lüning recently wrote a piece on a new study by a French team of scientists.  Conclusion: Mediterranean storm activity decreases during warm periods and there appears to be a solar link.
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The worst storms at the French Mediterranean coast? Always when the sun was weak and temperatures declined!
By Daniel Albig and Sebastian Lüning
(Translated by P Gosselin with permission)

The area of the Mediterranean Sea is regarded as a region that reacts especially sensitively to climate fluctuations. An increase in temperature there would be especially noticeable, say certain model projections. In 2007 some scientists even prophesied that there would soon be a danger of cyclones forming at the Mediterranean. But what does the pre-industrial climate history tell us about this possibility? Is there really a relationship between storm activity and temperature in the Mediterranean region?

A French team of scientists led by geologist Pierre Sabatier studied in detail how storms and global warming behaved historically in the region. In a study that appeared in January 2012 in the journal Quaternary Research, they examined the last 7000 years. The basis for their study was an 8-meter long sediment core that had been extracted in March, 2006 from the seabed of the Pierre Blanche Lagoon of the southern French Golf of Lion, about 10 kilometers south of Montpelier.

The scientists studied changes in the deposits in the lagoon, which today are covered by 60 cm of water. Changes in storm patterns in the region can be discerned by the variations in the particle size of the sand, the clay composition and fossils present. The frequency of the various species of water snails were analyzed. For example the hydrobia acuta lives in the brackish waters, the bittium reticulatum lives in the open seas. A sudden increase in deposits of the needle whelk indicates greater storm activity because the lagoon gets flooded more often by the sea.

Using various indicators, the French scientists identified seven periods of increased solar activity: 6300-6100 years ago, 5650-5400 years ago, 4400-4050 years ago, 3650-3200 years ago, 2800-2600 years ago, 1950-1400 years ago and 400-50 years ago. Storm activity increased over and over again over the last few thousands of years, and settled down during the times in between.

So what could have triggered storm activity at the French Mediterranean? In the search for possible relationships, the French scientists compared storm development with the temperature development of the North Atlantic, which was reconstructed more than 10 years ago by a team led by Gerard Bond who examined cores of ice berg rafted sediment and published the results in the journal Science. The Bond group could show that the temperature cycles were in sync with solar activity.

And what did this comparison yield? Storms in the Northwest Mediterranean occurred more often during the cold periods. Solar activity played an important role: Whenever the sun weakened, it became cold and stormy. When the sun got active, temperatures increased and the winds died down (Figure 1). The main drivers were obviously the solar Bond cycles. Also added are some solar-dependent, climate-system-internal fluctuations which complete the picture.

How could the relationship function? The scientists suspect that a stark north-south temperature gradient prevailed during the cold periods and thus resulted in more storms. In addition the westerly winds could have shifted southwards.

If you look back at the last 1000 years, the natural pattern becomes clear. During the Medieval Warm Period (1150 to 650 years ago) the new research results show that a period of weak storm activity prevailed. During the Little Ice Age that followed, tempestuous storms raged over the area of study. During the transition to the current Modern Warm Period the storms died down. The good news: An increase in storm activity is not anticipated, at least for the south French coast, with further warming of the Earth. Instead a decrease in storm activity is expected.

Interestingly, the relationship is not only valid for the Mediterranean region. Already in February 2012 we reported on a study from the Netherlands. That study showed that the strongest storms occurred during the Little Ice Age (read: Die kräftigsten Stürme gab es in Holland während der Kleinen Eiszeit).

 

German Green Foundation Annual Report Calls Skeptic Organization EIKE “A Setback For Climate Policy”

Green foundations in Germany, many supported by hundreds of millions of euros in funding from large corporations and political parties, are attacking skeptical European Institute for Climate and Energy (EIKE) for daring to practice the principles of science.
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EIKE is having an impact! German foundation report bemoans the founding of EIKE in 2007. One of the “biggest setbacks for climate policy”
By Dr. Holger Thuss, EIKE

This is curious: In the recently issued Foundation Report 2011/12 (here) of the ‘Federal Association of German Foundations’ on the topic of ‘Sustainability Mission: How Foundations Protect The Climate’, we find a chart on page 16 and 17 showing the progress and ‘political setbacks’ in so-called climate protection. For example the founding of ‘Greenpeace’ in the upper, lighter part of the chart is shown as progress and as a ‘catalyst for society’. (Google view here).


EIKE is designated as a setback for climate policy by Green foundations.

On the other hand, in the lower, dark-gray shaded area of the chart, one finds the setbacks and catastrophes: ‘long lasting pesticides’, the completely made up ‘acid rain’, the Bhopal accident, the ozone hole and many others . For the recent past, forest fires in Russia, various floods and all the failed UN summits are given. Also ClimateGate, which exposed the political intrigue of so-called climate scientists, is also shown in the gray area of setbacks.

And there is one single organisation that gets mentioned (in the light gray box) in the dark side of the chart along with all the political follies and catastrophes, real or made up. it is the:

European Institute for Climate and Energy

On page 118 the cooperation between EIKE and the Friedrich-Naumann-Foundation for Liberty in 2009 is also mentioned: The Friedrich-Naumann-Foundation for Liberty is close to the German Free Democrat Party (FDP) and is ‘clearly positioned’ the report writes with a menacing tone. The report also suggests that EIKE is tied to the ‘energy-intensive industries.’ That’s an allegation that is not true. A list of German foundations with multi-million dollar budgets that are close to political parties on the same page suggests that the support from the Friedrich Naumann Foundation involves large sums of money – a classic propaganda trick by professional Green propagandists! This diverts attention away from the billions of euros that other foundations are swimming in (see below) in order to implement their public re-education programs.

Also the choice of words and footnotes show that the report’s authors rely on the fighters for Good and Truth who happen to rely on large corporations or their foundations for assistance. But only when it is absolutely necessary, of course.

‘Partner of cooperation’ for this green piece of propaganda, by the way, were the German Federal Foundation for the Environment (DBU), BMW Foundation Herbert Quandt, the Robert Bosch Foundation and the Baden Württemberg Foundation. All these foundations can thank their existence on the industries which they are calling to be abolished. Even the DBU received an endowment of 1.3 billion euros, which came partly from the sale of the state-owned Salzgitter AG. The Baden-Württemberg Foundation has an endowment of €2.4 billion.

What’s especially baffling is why the foundation of a renowned automobile company is involved in a campaign related to the “Great Transformation“, which promotes the abolishment of individual mobility. In doing so, BMW is happily sawing the limb on which the company is sitting on.

Dr. Holger Thuss EIKE

Note: The entire report may be viewed at Google-Books here.

Global CO2 Emissions Jump Another 3% In 2011 – Yet Temperatures Show No Increase In 14 Years

New CO2 report! Expect the mainstream media to begin their chorus of impending doom and gloom now that the latest annual global CO2 report has been released.

Warmist energy and climate website CO2-Handel reports here that once again global CO2 emissions have increased, reaching a record level in 2012!  Yet CO2 Handel forgets to tell us that global temperature hasn’t risen in almost 15 years:

Atmospheric CO2 has been rising for years, but global temps are going in the opposite direction! Source: woodfortrees.org (Straight lines drawn in by hand by NTZ).

According to an annual report prepared by the EU Commission and Dutch PBL research organization, man pumped another 34 billion tons of CO2 into the Earth’s atmosphere.  The report was made public in Italy yesterday.

The report says China now produces as much CO2 per capita as Europe. Globally, CO2 emissions in 2011 were 3% higher, despite Europe and USA cutting their emissions 3% and 2% respectively (due in large part to the relatively warm winter and the global economic crisis).

Emissions in China, however, surged 9% primarily due to growing steel and cement production. India’s emissions jumped 6%. And because these countries are a long way from being optimally developed, even greater CO2 emissions there and in the other developing countries are inevitable. Don’t expect CO2 to be curbed anytime soon.

CO2 Handel also writes:

But the experts see a shimmer of hope: The share of renewable energy foremost sun, wind and biomass in energy production has quadrupled between 1992 and 2011.”

But at what cost, and has it stopped CO2 emissions?

And looking at the above temperature chart, why would anyone even want to curb CO2 emissions? The sooner we get to 500 ppm, the better. At that point, today’s developing countries will have reached a standard of living that is humane.

Final note: A few readers may claim I’m cherry-picking with the start-point of the chart. Look at it as you wish. The fact remains that temperature has ignored CO2 15 years.  I’ll leave it up to them to find the “missing heat”.

Warmist Ernst Ulrich Von Weizäcker Describes International Climate Policy As “Bleak”, In Utter Disarray

Good!

If the skeptics ever needed the stamp of success for their efforts to curb the climate agenda, this is it.

Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker, a prominent warmist scientist and politician in Germany, appeared on ZDF television and provided his assessment of today’s international climate policy. If any among us think that climate policy is a major threat to democracy and freedom, well then you can all take heart. Though the battle is far from over, skeptics are clearly winning the debate, despite being out-funded a million to one. Von Weizsäcker confirms it’s a mess.

Solar Server, an internet portal for solar energy reports on von Weizsäcker’s comments in an interview with ZDF German public television.

In an interview with ZDF news portal heute.de, scientist and politician Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker describes the bleak picture of international climate policy. ‘Climate protection is considered a disturbance in the noise of growth,’ says von Weizsäcker in the interview. At the international level, he sees no common thread on how the policy of climate protection is to be moved forward.”

‘People don’t want any climate protection, they want economic growth, driven by over-exploitation,’ he says.”

In plain language: The warmists are in utter disarray and exasperated. The movement is in panic mode.

Von Weizäcker: penalize efficiency to save energy!

Solarserver.de reports that von Weizäcker frets that “massive Europe-bashing is being carried out”. Solarserver.de quotes von Weizäcker:

We’ve got to make climate protection really profitable and finally implement energy efficiency techniques, which have been sitting in the drawer already a long time.”

Really? And so what must be done? Weizäcker proposes an economic idea that only a nutty professor could possibly concoct:

Every year, energy and raw materials have to be made more expensive – to the same extent that efficiency increases.”

Boy, now that’s a great incentive if I ever heard one – punish people for being more efficient! Clearly von Weizäcker’s loony ideas would also lead to energy starvation for the poor in developing countries. Poor countries can ill-afford today’s prices of energy and natural resources, let alone even higher prices. They need much cheaper sources. Solarserver.de writes:

He citicizes that world events are decided by mainly Brazilians, Indians and Americans – in the countries where climate issues are ranked very low.”

No word on whether or not von Weizäcker hopped into a chauffeured limousine to ferry him to a private jet waiting on the tarmac after the interview. Just another blowhard, pampered European aristocrat who can’t find anything to be happy about.

 

Heimholtz Centre for Ocean Research Climate Projections Turn Out To Be Entirely Wrong – Not A Dry Summer Since 2003!

Now that the inconvenient results of earlier models are coming in, the once esteemed German climate institutes, which we were not allowed to question, are sitting neck-deep in embarrassment. I’ve always said that the activist IPCC scientists, by abandoning the principles of science, had been setting themselves up to become the laughing stocks of future generations. They have not let us down.

German leading daily Bild writes: “Summer has a personality disorder. It thinks it’s autumn.”

And so do climate scientists. They think they can forecast 100 years into the future when they couldn’t even get the last 10 years right.

History may even soon look back and view them as bonafide crackpots. What other conclusion can be drawn about scientists who naively insist climate can be controlled by a single factor, trace gas CO2?

We all remember the forecasts of “barbecue summers” and snow being “a thing of the past” coming out of England. Well, we’ve seen the same in Germany. Just last week I wrote about how once authorative model projections from the once prestigious Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg have completely have fallen in disagrace.

Today, Sebastian Lüning and Fritz Vahrenholt, author of the bestselling “Die kalte Sonne” skeptic book, take a look at how another model of another once “esteemed” German institute and scientist is faring – from IPCC climate scientist Professor Mojib Latif of the Heimholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel, Germany. Lüning quotes a recent article in the German daily Die Recklinghäuser Zeitung of 13 July 2012 (yes, even the press is now beginning to ask questions): Die Recklinghäuser Zeitung writes:

Under the motto “parched summers– a climate tale?“ meteorologist Dominik Jung took a look at the dire predictions that climate scientists such as Mojib Latif and looked at the weather archives of the last 10 summers. While the professor of the Helmholtz Center for Ocean Research in Kiel, one of the leading admonishers when it comes to the greenhouse effect, years ago foresaw hot and dry summers coming to Central Europe, meteorologist Jung has been unable to confirm that trend. ‘The fact is: Summers over the last 10 years have not been dryer as they were forecast earlier, but have even become wetter nationwide,’ said Jung. His rain summary: There has not been a dry summer since 2003. Rainfall amounts were average in five of the summers, three summers were to some extent extremely wet: 2007, 2010 and 2011, with the latter being 35% above average. ‘And this year does not look any different, especially with the really wet days that are in the pipeline,’ Jung warns.”

In the months and years ahead, we are going to dig up all these once “unquestionable forecasts” and compare them to the real observations. And we are not going to do it just once, but over and over again – just like how the media and activist scientists repeated all the bogus dire warnings of hot, dry summers over and over again.

Get used to it!

 

Swiss Weather Expert: Tendency For Storms Has Increased, “Even If This Cannot Be Confirmed Statistically”

This summer in Western Europe has been a cool and wet one. People are now wondering about all those model projections calling for blast-furnace summers accompanied by killer droughts, which the media have been warning us about year after year.

Not to worry, says meteorologist Mario Slongo, former weather expert for DRS 1; they are surely coming. He adds that the cool, wet weather we are experiencing is completely normal. Yes, with man-made climate change, all you need is faith. Just believe it.

The Swiss Neue Zürcher Zeitung interviews meteorologist Mario Slongo on the greenhouse effect, climate cycles and misconceptions.

If Slongo confirms anything in the interview, it is that AGW and man-made climate change are indeed religious belief. The NZZ asks: “Have extreme weather conditions generally increased?” Slongo answers (my emphasis):

Yes, the tendency for weather patterns that favor storms has increased, even if this cannot be confirmed statistically. But many other factors impact our weather. For example, the North Atlantic Oscillation, a pressure fluctuation between the Azore’s High and Iceland Low. This pressure difference is continuously changing and will soon bring dry and soon very wet weather.”

Firstly, you can’t claim something surely exists if you can’t observe it. There’s a reason why it cannot be “statistically confirmed”…like maybe because it isn’t there in the first place! Models are not reality, Mr Slongo. They are digital fantasy.

Secondly, the climate models, on which our duped, drugged-up-on-green policymakers have based so many political decisions, should have taken the NAO (and all the other factors) into account before basing all the nutty climate projections for Europe solely on atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Modellers would have saved themselves lots of embarrassment.

German summers defy model projections – cooling instead of warming

In another story, reader Josef Kowatsch now shows us that German summers have not only gotten wetter, but have also gotten cooler thus completely contradicting the “unquestionable” forecasts made by the “sophisticated” models of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg.

Here’s the chart Mr. Kowatsch sent me by e-mail, one that the press refuses to acknowledge:

Summer temperatures JJA in Germany over the last 15 years. Temperatures have been falling over the last decade. Chart based on data from the DWD German Weather Service.

The linear trend for the summer over the last 15 years is constant at 17.4 °C. After this summer it will decline slightly, as the polynomial curve continues downwards after 2011.

In the vocabulary of climate science, one thing is becoming very clear: “accelerating” means “disappearing”.

 

Why German Prof. Hans-Joachim Schellnhuber & Co. Will Become The Object Of Ridicule For Future Generations

Once again German Professor Hans-Joachim (John) Schellnhuber is calling for limiting democracy and transfering policy-making power to a wiser, elite group of scientists.

Dr. Peter Heller here examines the answers given by Schellnhuber in a recent interview with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) and then tells us why Schellnhuber’s power-grab will fail.
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Schellnhuber and Ruling the World
by Peter Heller

Any fan of Hollywood films following the climate debate knows the objectives of mad scientists: They try to rule the world. With his performance in the FAZ in the run-up to the recent UN-Summit on Sustainability in Rio, Prof. Dr. Hans-Joachim Schellnhuber can be ranked along with the likes of Dr. Strangelove and Dr. No:

The role of climate science remains to put the problem-facts on the table and to identify options for appropriate solutions. The role of politics is then to mobilize the will of the citizens with the aim of implementing decisions that are based on science.”

This demonstrates an odd understanding of democracy. Up to now the “will of the citizens” has always arose from the interests of people and were implemented by electing a goverment that abided to that will. But Schellnhuber wants to turn this on its head. According to Schellnhuber, politics should now tell the citizens what interests they are to have so that measures that follow those prescribed by science will end up getting implemented.

He leaves no doubt about which targets he is pursuing:

What is certain is that we do not only need relative objectives, but also absolute guardrails. And that means for example, as before, 450 ppm of CO2 is to be the maximum if global warming is to be limited to two degrees Celsius. Within these absolute orientation guidelines, the Green Economy can unfold as it likes. I have nothing against economic growth, as long as it does not break through the planetary guardrails.”

Hence, in the future a small group of scientists are to determine which products and ideas we are to use, produce, consume or implement, and which we are not to. A network established and led by Schellnhuber:

As scientists, this time we can deliver our views directly to the centre and convey our message to the official part of the Summit. Just before Rio+20, there’s going to be a ‘Nobel Dialogue’ with about ten Nobel laureates and leading global experts for sustainability. This circle was created through the ‘Nobel Cause’ which we formed in Potsdam in 2007. In order to give science an unmistakable voice of the highest credibility. At Rio 2012 this voice will speak through a memorandum which will be introduced to the round-tables of government leaders and ministers by the representatives of our circle, thus achieving a whole new quality of discourse between scientists and decision-makers.”

Schellnhuber’s idea of rule has a new quality: the dictator acts behind the scenes and no longer provides the possibilities. Instead, he prescribes the limits for development. Governments are not only to act at the executive level, but are also to act as PR and marketing agents for selling these limits to the broader public. The rule of mad scientists thus gets established by the ruled, who then regulate themselves with enthusiasm.

This strategy differs totally from one used by Lex Luthor, or green kobolds. Can it be successful?

Schellnhuber’s approach entails the level of man-made rules, which serve as the framework for social processes. These rules, written and unwritten, impact the interaction between people and their surroundings, from basic law, to civil code, and extending to municipal regulations for importing anything, such as dental braces from a Romanian manufacturer. They form a network of regulation that cover and run our lives. They are often are not helpful, but without them not much would likely function. Therefore, one may ask: aren’t legistlative committees the power that form our society?

Not by any means.

This is because the political level functions only within the higher and superior level of economics. People break or bend laws mostly when it makes economic sense. If politics obstructs the free economy, the former always fails and the latter emerges as the winner. Over the long-term, laws can be successful only if they take the decisive forces of trade into account instead or working against them. Sectors such as prostitution, pornography, arms, narcotics and gambling are combatted based on moral notions – in all cultures, societal systems and states by using a variety of regulations, control mechanisms and outright bans. However, they still remain enduring and profitable.

Many apostles of sustanability in Club Schellnhuber have recognized the primacy of economics. They believe that people can be swayed by ethical arguments to behave irrationally with respect to economy, and be convinced to even forego the benefits of burning crude oil, natural gas, and coal.

But calls to do this are ineffective and fail time after time. Economics are also subject to a superior force: biology. The “economic human” in all of us gets disabled only when our natural, evolutionary drives take over. Ultimately the desire for material prosperity is an expression of these drives: greed. It is an instinct important for survival in the competition for resources among species. Aggression, fear, and natural sex drive are other factors. People who are controlled by these emotions make bad business transactions.

That’s the reason why fear plays such a large role in the climate debate, and has a much larger effect than moral platitudes. Fear brings people out onto the street against new infrastructure projects, nuclear and coal power plants. So it is no surprise that generating fear is at the top of the alarmists’ agenda.

But such propaganda can be successful only over the short-term. That is because there is an ultimate ruler of human civilzation: technology.

It can for example control our biological instincts in a variety of ways. Just think of the trickery employed by an ad to get the customer to make a purchase. Think of psycho-phramceuticals and designer drugs. Foremost they act to free us from fear because they protect people better and better from all dangers.

Relevant in the climate debate is the increasing invulnerability with respect to destructive natural phenomena. When people live in stone houses, are protected by dikes, stock food, and maintain a stable supply of potable water, warnings of the risks of a climate catastrophe lose their effect. Just how dangerous can droughts be when gene-improved plants made to resist droughts are used in agriculture?

Also relevant in the climate debate is the increased access to the plentiful reserves and deposits of carbon-based fossil fuels. It is not desperation and shortage that drive the oil and gas industry to drill offshore at extreme depths or to do fracking. It is technical progress that transforms inaccessible resources into marketable reserves. Technology does not break through barriers because it is necessary; it does so because it is possible. Possibility is the mother of invention.

The physical laws of the universe make up the framework for biological evolution on Earth. On the basis of these natural laws, technical systems are created, which can fulfill far more tasks far more efficiently than what is possible by life forms that are mercilessly trimmed by effective reproduction. Today technology sets down the framework conditions for human societies – not nature. It determines the relevance of human biological instincts. It determines how to run business and how it is to be conducted. It also determines how human societies are to organize themselves. Civilization is a consequence of technology, and not its source. It began with fire, ancient empires with agriculture, and alphabet. The Middle Ages brought on wind mills and water wheels. The printing of books led to enlightenment, the steam engine led to the abolishment of slavery. Today the Internet is a threat to the world’s rulers. It’s always been progress in the necessary fields of health and nutrition, energy, mobility and communcation which have led to breakthroughs.

The primacy of technology over biology, economics and politics closes Schellnhuber’s path to grabbing power. He can go on whispering his ideas to governments, but here he is dealing precisely with the group of people who have the least possibility to configure anything. Emissions trading, carbon taxes, emission limits and subsidies for green energies will remain ineffective tools because they involve only the lower levels of the law. This is now obvious after more than 20 years of climate policy – global CO2 emissions have steadily climbed. Any time someone attempts to use legislation to override the principles of economic processes, biological factors and technical innovation, they fail. You can sometimes slow things down, but you will never stop them. Except for some frictional losses, there will be no detectable effects in the end.  Ultimately, technology will push away Schellnhuber’s guardrails far beyond the horizons. Whether the notions of climate and environmental catastrophe, species extinction and resource shortages are justified or not, the coming generations will only laugh at the irrelevance of these end-of-world fantasies.

If he is truly trying to achieve global rule, then the Professor from Potsdam has probably seen too many Hollywood films in which mad scientists tried to do just that. But Schellnhuber has even failed to understand the films, as every villain worked at the top and employed technical innovation instead of authoring papers and roadmaps for governments. Schellnhuber is not only giving his employers the wrong recommendations, he is not even delivering anything useful for a credible Hollywood script.

Remark: Although I’ve been following the described above world-model for quite some time, the concrete idea for this text was provided by an especially interesting and informative presentation by Prof. Adrian Bowyer, who revealed to me and other members of the audience his plan for ruling the world as a “mad scientist” by using self duplicating 3D printers.

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German Survey Of Recent Scientific Literature Shows No Signs Of Accelerated Sea Level Rise

Geologist Dr. Sebastian Lüning and Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt have sifted through recent scientific literature looking for evidence that global sea level rise has accelerated over the last 3 decades.

Their result: “The scientific facts speak very clearly against it. It is only a question of time before the idea disappears from the public discussion.”

Lüning and Vahrenholt examined recently published papers on the subject and they present their findings (translated in English and condensed by P Gosselin).
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Case studies from around the world: no evidence of accelerating sea level rise over the last 30 years
by Sebastian Lüning, Fritz Vahrenholt

1. GPS-monitored global tide gauges

In 2009 Guy Wöppelmann et al examined what effects vertical land movement had on the sea level data from tide gauges and published their results in the Geophysical Research Letters. The scientists evaluated globally 227 stations whose elevation was monitored by GPS. 160 of these stations were located at a distance maximum 15 km from the coast. By measuring the vertical movement of the tide gauges, they were able to apply a correction. From this they calculated a mean global sea level rise of 1.61 mm/year over the last century. Figure 1 shows that sea level rise has remained constant since 1940 – no acceleration over the last 70 years!

Figure 1: Sea level development for that last 100 years for northern Europe (top) and northwest America (bottom) based on tide gauges. No acceleration since 1940. Source: Wöppelmann et al. (2009).

2. Arctic Ocean shows no acceleration

2. Another important paper appeared in June, 2012 in the Geophysical Research Letters. A team lead by Olivier Henry of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in Toulouse, France, examined 62 tide gauges along the coast of Norway to Russia over the last 62 years. The study yielded some surprising results. Beginning in 1950 Arctic sea level remained relatively stable (Figure 2). Sea level then began to rise in 1980 and reached a high point in 1990, which has yet to be surpassed. From 1995 to 2009 the authors calculated a mean sea level rise rate of 4 mm/year.

What is especially fascinating is that sea level at this region was in sync with the Arctic Oscillation (AO), see Figures 2 and 3. There’s been a decoupling only for the last 10 years, which is too short a time period to draw any sound conclusions. One thing is certain: The AO will also impact sea level behaviour there in the future.

Not only does temperature impact sea levels globally, but so do natural oceanic cycles. Ocean cycles can lower or raise sea levels, and accelerate or slow them down. An overall acceleration in sea level rise in the Arctic Ocean due to melting ice over the last 30 years cannot be detected.

Figure 2: From 1950 to 2000 sea level changes are predominantly in sync with the Arctic Oscillation (black curve). Figure from Henry et al (2012).

 

Figure 3: Arctic Oscillation Index (Source: Wikipedia).

3. New Zealand

Now let’s go to the other side of the globe – New Zealand, where only a few tide gauges go back to 1900. John Hannah and Robert Bell of the University of Otago and the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research respectively published a paper in January 2012 in the Journal of Geophysical Research. The new curves show that sea level rise has been steady since 1940 (Figure 4). The development in New Zealand is similar to the global situation. The long-term New Zealand trend is 1.7 mm sea level rise per year.

Figure 4: Sea level development from four New Zealand coastal tide gauges. Here there’s been no acceleration in sea level rise over the last 70 years. Figure from Hannah & Bell (2012).

Particularly interesting in the Hannah and Bell study is that New Zealand sea level rise is characterized by decadal cycles. Sea level rose and dropped in sync with the Pacific ocean cycles (Southern Oscillation Index, SOI and others), see Figure 5. Also see report from the NIPCC.

Figure 5: Shown are four New Zealand sea level tidal gauge series (thin curves), along with the Southern Oscillation Index (bold black curve). Source of figure: Hannah & Bell (2012).

 4. Tasmania

In January, 2012, an international team led by Roland Gehrels of the University of Plymouth published a new study in the Earth and Planetary Science Letters examining the sea level history of Tasmania. Using cores taken from salt marshes, they reconstructed sea level development for the last 6000 years. Especially interesting are the last 200 years.

Sea level rose between 1900 and 1950 at a rate of 4.2 mm per year (Figure 6), but slowed down considerably in the second half of the 20th century to an average of only 0.7 mm per year – similar to southern New Zealand. No sea level rise acceleration is detectable in the Australian New Zealand region over the last decades. In fact, just the opposite is true. Sea level rise slowed down in the second half of the century.

Figure 6: Sea level rise around Tasmania over the last 200 years. Sea level rise slowed down during the second half of the 20th century. Source of diagram: Gehrels et al. (2012).

5. Tarawa Atoll

Simon Donner of the University of British Columbia closely examined sea level development for the last 20 years for the Japanese atoll Tarawa and published his findings in the journal Eos in April 2012. Now hold on to your seat: tide gauges show that the sea level around Tarawa did not rise at all during this period (Figure 7)!

Moreover, the sea level fluctuations depicted by the curve are mainly due to the El Nino effect. In 1998 sea level dropped a full 45 cm as the transition was made from a powerful El Nino to a La Nina. Also see articles by Mark Lynas and Roger Pielke Sr.

Figure 7: Sea level development around the Tarawa atoll based on tide gauges. There is no detectable rise. Diagram source: Donner (2012).

6. Bay of Biscay

In May, 2012, a study by Eduardo Leorri of East Carolina University appeared in the Quaternary Science Reviews. Examining sediment cores, the scientists studied sea level development of the Bay of Biscay for the period going back 10,000 years. As Figure 8 shows, sea level rise slowed down 7000 years ago.

Figure 8: Sea level rise in the Bay of Biscay. Diagram source: Leorri et al. (2012).

Leorri and his team compared the results to coastal tide gauge readings from the region for the last 200 years. From 1800 to 1900 (Figure 9), sea level was stagnant. Then it began to rise around 1900. But no unusual acceleration can be detected over the last 30 years.

Figure 9: Coastal tide gauge measurements from the Bay of Biscay. Diagram source: Leorri et al. (2012).

7. Tony Brown, sea level of the last 2000 years.

A comprehensive presentation of pre-industrial sea level development was made by Tony Brown, who published his results at Judith Curry’s blog (blog article, detailed pdf-version). Readers should refer to pages 23-26, where Brown brings up some interesting points on sea level rise over the last 2000 years. Referring to the work of Aslak Grinsted of the University of Lapland from 2010 in the Journal Climate Dynamics, it is discussed whether the sea level of today has reached the levels of the Medieval Warm Period.

In any case, natural and anthropogenic causes have to be considered and properly attributed. Like the Hockey Stick episode, sea level development can in no way be considered as a monotone and non-eventful phenomenon. It too has varied naturally over the centuries, and the natural factors will continue to play a major role.

Figure 10: Sea level development model of the last 2000 years. The bold black curve starting in 1700 is a geological reconstruction by Jevrejeva et al. (2006). Modified as to Grinsted et al. (2010).

In May, 2012 at WUWT, Paul Homewood led an interesting discussion on whether sea level rise accelerated during the recent decades when compared to the 20th century. He concludes that satellite measurements may be flawed.

In summary, our global sea level journey produced some good results, some very remarkable results, depending on your point of view. Signs of an accelerating sea level over the last 30 years could not be found in any of the studies.

It doesn’t look good for the acceleration fans.

 

Zoologist Comments On Polar Bear Behavior And Ability To Adapt – How Much Land And Ice Do They Need?

We have a very informative exchange going on the topic of polar bears, initiated by Ed Caryl’s earlier post here.

Zoologist Susan Crockford, Phd., responds to Authur C. Smith III’s comment here on polar bear behavior.
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Arthur,

Thanks so much for your detailed response. I am always fascinated to hear first-hand accounts of animal behavior, as I expect is true for other readers of this blog.

It is good to hear that your experience with observing interactions between polar bears and grizzlies fits with what I have read in the scientific literature. It also fits my model (visual model, not mathematical model!) of how polar bears evolved, from either newly-evolved grizzlies or the common ancestor of both (see http://rhythmsoflife.ca).

While I realize that the most recent genetic study (the Hailer et al. 2012 one) suggests the latter (polar bears evolved from a common polar/grizzly ancestor), I contend we probably don’t yet have the definitive answer, especially since Hailer et al propose extensive hybridization between female grizzlies and male polar bears to explain their genetic results – which as you and I have both noted, goes against the behavioral evidence.

I would like to reiterate that both polar bears and grizzlies mate in the spring/early summer. However, the socializing that you describe is happening in the late summer/early fall – in other words, after the mating season. Male tundra grizzlies are known to range over enormous distances and recently, have wandered, over the spring sea ice, up onto the western Canadian Arctic islands. Therefore, it appears that recent hybridization events have occurred in polar bear territory, not grizzly territory.

In other words, modern grizzlies are going to the sea ice in the spring to mate with polar bears rather than polar bears going on land to mate with grizzlies.

I take issue with this statement: ‘For better or for worse, for natural or man-made, the arctic ice is melting: climate shifts are part of a cycle that has happened repeatedly in the past and will continue so without regard to whether or not humans’ sensibilities are offended. Our failings of argument and denial are providing cover for the refusal and lack of accountability concerning the truth of polar bear ecology: polar bears are social animals, coming to land. Land is necessary for their survival. In our rush to cash out the Arctic, polar bears are to be written off as a casualty of climate change.’ [my emphasis]

First – I suggest this be the last time you use the word ‘denial’ or ‘denier’ in a discussion of this issue. I would find it supremely offensive, as I know many others do. There are many valid and rational scientific questions about many aspects of the catastrophic global warming storyline that have yet to be answered. These questions deserve to be heard in a respectful manner and addressed.

Second – You insist that ‘land is necessary for polar bear survival.’ I can see why you might conclude that but you should recognize that it is biased by your limited experience. As valuable and interesting as your observations are, they have been restricted to bears on land (or very close to it). Despite what you have seen with your own eyes, evidence from scientific studies does not support that statement.

The Wrangell Island polar bears you mention are part of the ‘Chukchi/Bering Sea’ subpopulation (which is shared almost equally between Russia and the US in terms of geographic territory). This subpopulation has been tentatively estimated to number about 2,000 individuals, although no survey has yet been done (Aars et al. 2006; Obbard et al. 2010 – these are the Polar Bear Specialist Group meeting reports, available here: http://pbsg.npolar.no/en/).

If we accept that number as reasonably correct (which it very well may not be), the ‘nearly 600 polar bears’ that you say came ashore and thrived for four months on Wrangell Island eating walrus would be about 30% of the total subpopulation. Even if another 10-30% of the regional population was scattered along the Russian shoreline and northwestern tip of Alaska, that still puts a significant proportion of all bears out on the sea ice during the late summer/early fall – about 40-50% not on land (even more if the population estimate is too low). This suggests that polar bears do not require land in summer but rather, some bears prefer it.

In fact, over most of their range, most polar bears remain on the sea ice year-round, or at most spend only short periods on land.

Working in the southern Beaufort Sea area, which includes all of the north coast of Alaska except the western tip near the Bering Strait, Schliebe et al. (2008:1005, 1st paragraph) found that between 2000 and 2005, an average of 3.7% of all polar bears of that region spent time on land between mid-September and the end of October (estimated total population at that time was 1,526 bears). That’s about 57 bears on shore out of 1526 total. Which again suggests your insistence that polar bears require land is unsupported.

So what about pregnant females that den over the winter, you might ask? It is clear that some pregnant females that spend September/October on the sea ice do indeed come to land to make their winter dens. However, ‘some’ is not all, as you seem to suggest.

Studies indicate that aside from Hudson Bay and Svalbard (where virtually all bears do indeed appear to den on land), around 50% of bears den on the sea ice. For example, according to the study done by Fischbach and colleagues (2007) in the southern Beaufort Sea, approximately 37-60% of females den offshore, on the ice. Which means 37-60% of females are not using land.

Amstrup and Gardner (1994:8) have stated that ‘Contrary to previous hypotheses (Stirling and Andriashek 1992), substantial polar bear denning occurs in the Beaufort Sea region of northern Alaska and adjacent Canada. Bears that den on pack ice are subject to risks not encountered by bears that den on land. Unstable, moving ice caused early abandonment of dens and, apparently, loss of cubs. However, the persistence of pack-ice denning indicated that those risks are not overwhelming.’

It is worth noting that according to the field work conducted by Steve Ferguson and colleagues (2000) in the Canadian Arctic, polar bears utilize so-called ‘thick’ first year ice (1.2-2.0 m) for over-wintering activities, including denning. Over in the Barents Sea, north of Norway, bears are also known to den on first year ice (Mauritzen et al. 2001).

[What surprises me is that despite this known use of offshore sea ice for denning by pregnant females, the report supplied in support for the listing of the polar bear as a threatened species (Bergen et al. 2007:6) modelled only future changes to terrestrial denning habitat. It did not address offshore sea ice denning habitat at all.]

I conclude that there is no evidence from modern polar studies to support your statement that ‘land is necessary for polar bear survival’ or that ‘land is a requisite component of polar bear ecology.’

Moreover, I caution you against concluding, based on the papers by Edwards, Hailer and others, that ‘polar bears have existed and survived through ice free periods.’ Ice-free for a month or so during the summer does not mean ice-free year round. There is no evidence I know of that suggests the Arctic was ice-free in winter at any time during the mid to late Pleistocene (the Melles et al. evidence is for summer conditions on land, which tells us nothing about winter sea ice).

So, as far as I can see, there is no evidence to suggest that ‘land is necessary for polar bear survival’ nor for the idea that polar bears were required to live a terrestrial existence during interglacial periods.

Best regards,

Susan Crockford, Ph.D. (Zoology)

REFERENCES CITED:

Amstrup, S.C. and Gardner, C. 1994. Polar bear maternity denning in the Beaufort Sea. The Journal of Wildlife Management 58:1-10.

Bergen, S., Durner, G. M., Douglas, D. C., and Amstrup, S. C. 2007. Predicting movements of female polar bears between summer sea ice foraging habitats and terrestrial denning habitats of Alaska in the 21st century: proposed methodology and pilot assessment. Administrative Report, U.S. Department of the Interior-U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA.

Ferguson, S. H., Taylor, M. K., and F. Messier 2000. Influence of sea ice dynamics on habitat selection by polar bears. Ecology 81:761-772.
Mauritzen, M., Derocher, A.E. and Wiig, Ø. 2001. Space-use strategies of female polar bears in a dynamic sea ice habitat. Canadian Journal of Zoology 79:1704-1713.

Schliebe, S., Rode, K.D., Gleason, J.S., Wilder, J., Proffitt, K., Evans, T.J., and S. Miller. 2008. Effects of sea ice extent and food availability on spatial and temporal distribution of polar bears during the fall open-water period in the southern Beaufort Sea. Polar Biology 31:999-1010.

Stirling, I. and Andriashek, D. 1992. Terrestrial maternity denning of polar bears in the eastern Beaufort Sea area. Arctic 45:363-366.”