Spiegel Dumps Cold Water On “Record Warm Year” Significance … Sees Science Fraught With Widespread Uncertainty

Now that a couple of surface temperature data sets are showing 2014 was a “record warm year,” people are wondering if it means the warming pause is over, and if so, how much climate sensitivity to CO2 there really is.

Online Spiegel science journalist Axel Bojanowski (a geologist) has an analysis of 2014’s “record warm year” and asks if it means global warming has resumed after “a pause since the end of the 1990s”. He describes how climate scientists have been dumbfounded by the “unexpected warming pause”. A number of scientists blame the oceans for absorbing the heat out of the atmosphere. Japan’s meteorological services report that global surface temperature has risen 0.7°C in one hundred years, he writes.

On the significance of the warm year, the Spiegel science journalist quotes the German Climate Consortium: “The following years will allow us to judge the extent global warming at the surface of the earth has resumed.” And even the most alarmist organizations are conceding the global warming pause is real. For example the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) indirectly admits to Spiegel that the global temperature has paused, but reminds us that the 14 warmest years on record occurred over the past 15 years.

On the future of warming, Bojanowski describes a science fraught with uncertainty when it comes to future projections:

The UN IPCC continues to predict a hefty global warming should carbon dioxide emissions not be drastically reduced. But there are major uncertainties in the calculations and for this reason short-term fluctuations will remain unexplainable.”

Readers should note at this point that this too also has to apply for “short-term” warm fluctuations, such as the one from 1980-1998. That one too must have been in large part due to natural factors.

Bojanowski sums up his analysis by pointing out there is also uncertainty not only at the earth’s surface, but in the troposphere as well, writing that “satellite meaurements are astonishing” researchers:

Moreover satellite measurements for upper air levels, which have been taken since the mid 1990s, show hardly any warming. Because of this, scientists are debating if the sensitivity of air temperature with respect to greenhouse gases is possibly less than assumed.”

Bojanowski also points to conflicting scientific literature and papers when it comes to the stability of the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets. He adds, “The uncertainties show that the decisive questions about the future cannot be answered using short-term fluctuations.” And:

A warm record here, a warming pause there – the concerns and questions surrounding climate change remain the same.”


6 responses to “Spiegel Dumps Cold Water On “Record Warm Year” Significance … Sees Science Fraught With Widespread Uncertainty”

  1. Ed Caryl

    “Warmest year since records began” means nothing given the limitations on the “records.” Those are: limited spacial resolution, “homogenization” that warms rural stations to match urban station, and are limited to records that began, for just a few stations, 100 or so years ago. Was it warmer 1000 years, 2000 years, or 4000 years ago? Almost certainly yes. We are at the peak of several cycles right now, heading down the other side of all of them. It is going to get colder, we are not preparing for that, and it will turn out badly.

    On a previous post: The Pope sticking his oar into the situation will not help. He has no business taking a stand on any scientific issue. He should stick to theology. In all the history of the Church taking a stand on a scientific point, the Church was almost universally wrong. One would think the Church would have learned something from their own record. The Pope puts the doctrine of infallibility into danger yet again, and he has no need to do so. I, for one, am praying that he steps back from that abyss.

    We are in the midst of a dangerous time period. An unrecognized religious war is smoldering with occasional flames from Europe and North Africa to the western Pacific, and we are being distracted by a climate war all across the Western World, where there is actual talk of jailing “deniers”. I call to your attention that those that are using that term, that are disarming police and the law-abiding populace, and excusing Islamic jihad, are mostly the same people. The spirit of Neville Chamberlain is very much alive. Winston Smith is in there somewhere. We await the spirit of Winston Churchill.

  2. Mindert Eiting

    So the question is of whether patient Earth will get fever again. The problem with climate science is that we have just one patient. This may be the major reason for a regression to medieval science, as discussed here yesterday by Luedecke. In medieval times surgeons constituted a medical elite of highly esteemed men and their influence lasted for centuries. In newspapers of the seventeenth and eighteenth century we may read about the royal court in Lisbon, for example, where princess so and so did not feel well but after blood letting fully recovered.

    Perhaps a dream of modern climate scientists would be that surface temperatures of the earth went up in the past eighteen years even faster than before. That could have happened in stead of the pause. So the climate scientists could have had a dream confirmation of their models (GCM´s). In stead of citing Karl Popper, I would like to illustrate in one sentence why confirmations are worthless. The Portuguese princess and her surgeon both expected that she would recover after blood letting and so she did.

    In modern science we do everything in order to falsify a theory. We know that a false theory may have true consequences but a true theory cannot have false consequences. By the pause of eighteen years, 98 percent of the GCM runs fail. Some climate scientists require one hundred percent but I want to ask another question. The number of 98 percent of failures is simply too high. Why? If you make an exam of one hundreds two-choice items, and you do not know anything of the subject and can do no better than guessing, 98 failures is extremely unlikely. The best explanation for such an overwhelming failure is that the items are severely dependent upon each other. This may happen in a bad exam in which all items require the same bit of specific knowledge. If you have that wrong you will fail on all items (actually you have an one-item exam).

    We know that all GCM’s are infected by one AGW virus, that all their temperature curves go up, and are compared with one pause, shown by one patient. I do not trust applications of statistics in which there is no check of the basic assumption that the GCM runs are independent. They almost certainly are not. The AGW virus caused the massive failure but like the surgeons the climate scientists can march on for centuries. Climate science seems to be as immune to falsification as the surgeons practice to the unavoidable death of the Portuguese princess.

  3. Henning Nielsen

    Well, if it will go badly, I don’t know. A return to the temperature of the seventies in the next ten years or so does not really seem so scary, there was constant progress in the world in those colder days too.

    And a real LIA chill will probably take quite some time to reach.

    The war against extremist attacks is no different than what it has been in the last 15 years. There will be losses, as in any war.

    Je suis Charlie.

  4. Mike Heath

    Today there is an interesting mix of science, theology, history and story telling.

    For instance -Theology and science.
    They are inseparable! God is not wrong or else he is not God.
    If there is a difference then at least one of them is wrong, but usually the difference is manufactured.
    The flat Earth idea, was it the theology or the science that was wrong? Neither. The spherical Earth was know to be spherical in recorded history of the Greeks form the time before Christ, and Christian theologians held the same view in the first centuries AD. The flat earth idea is a myth, and even the Bible talks about the rolling spheres, but most people think it was true!

    It is not only science that is fraught with widespread uncertainty, so are many things that we are supposed to believe and take as given. The current reports regarding extremism are the same

    The war against extremists, is it a war of civilisations or a war against civilisation? (John Kerry spin).

    This is a clash of world views. In this case it is atheistic (secular) against Theistic (Theos – God). Whatever the Muslim community says, the perpetrators of the crime in Paris believe they are doing God’s will.

    There was a time when it was popular to speak about talking, discussing, in an effort to solve problems where there was disagreement, but how can a discussion be held with a extremist with an agenda that says “do what I want or else…”. AGW is also extremist is its own way, with it’s own world view, and is just as unlikely to hold discussions. In the end, if AGWer get there way, there could be far more suffering in the world than due to theistic extremism.

    1. Gary Prince

      I’m not so sure I’d call the flat earth idea wrong. 99,9% of the earths population were uneducated and superstitious – and probably believed the earth flat. The educated 0,1% knew diffently.

      The extremists on all sides are just the remains of the 99,9% screaming their frustration at their immenent extinction.

      1. DirkH

        Saving the flat Earth myth one sophistry at a time.