German Junk-Science Round-Up. Global Warming Leads To Cyclones, Bitter Cold And La Ninas

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Man-made CO2-induced global warming leads to more droughts, cyclones, floods, bitter cold winters and heavy snowfalls – so say many German media outlets. Why is that so?

Some people need to hear that the end of the world is coming, and if they don’t, it ruins their day. They need that dose of doom and gloom to make it through the day – just like the junkie who needs the needle.

So that’s why the media does it. What follows are some example stories in the media that appeared this week. But first, Der Spiegel sobered up for a time and actually presented something coherent and sensible.

Der Spiegel

Der Spiegel writes: Deep Heat In the Pacific Fueled Yasi. Der Spiegel asks if storms are fuelled by climate change:

A consenus paper from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) from the year 2006 says that the fluctuations in frequency of cyclones and their strengths cannot be traced back to warming.”

And points out that such storms have happened in the past too:

Also in Australia there have been cyclones: In March 1899 the deadliest ever cyclone ripped through the Bathurst Bay; 300 people died. Cyclone “Tracy” destroyed a large part of the city of Darwin on Christmas Day 1974, killing 71.”

But that was about it as far as sobriety goes from the German media this week. The rest saw to it that the catastrophe junkies get their fix of junk-science based doom and gloom. Here are some examples:

Die Welt
Reports on the real reason for the cold winter: Why Global Warming Leads to Ice Cold Winters

When sea ice area declines, it loses its albedo, which normally would reflect sunlight back into space. As a result, this leads to a warming in the high Arctic and thus changes the large-scale air currents so that large parts of Europe, Asia and North America get subjected to cold air masses.”

Absolutely brilliant scientific work there.

Süddeutsche Zeitung
Reports on cyclone Yasi: Reasons For The Cyclone:

Another factor is because the ocean at the Australian coast has apparently warmed up due to climate change. The sea surface over the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Queensland has been more than 2°C warmer than normal in some parts over the last few months. This excess was enough to fuel Yasi into a killer.”

Financial Times Deutschland
Reports on a large chunk of ice breaking off Antarctica Climate Change: An Iceberg Causes Trouble. The breaking off of a 2500 sq km chunk of the Antarctic Mertz-Glacier could have dire consequences on the global climate:

The iceberg breaking off could have dire consequences because a system was destroyed in parts that earlier had been effectively productive in producing salty deep water. Now the general warming of the oceans will be accelerated further, which will then in turn accelerate the melting of the polar ice caps and lead to additional sea level rise.”

Süddeutsche Zeitung
Reports on the Amazon drought: Again A Drought of the Century

The Amazon Rainforest has gone through a second drought of the century within just six years. More than half of the 5.3 million sq km have received significantly less rain than average years. When the trees rot, five million tons of CO2 will be released. That is almost the same annual output of the USA.

”Two such events of this magnitude in such a short time is extremely rare’, says Simon Lewis of the University of Leeds. But unfortunately that fits the climate that predict a bitter future for the Amazonians.’

What about all the climate models that didn’t predict it? And is USA’s CO2 output really only 5 million tons?

Handelsblatt
Also reports on the Amazon drought: Record Drought In The Amazon

Many climate scientists fear that within the scope of global warming, droughts could increase in frequency and that the region will reach an ecological tipping point.

So, do you doom-and-gloom junkies who insist on a dismal future feel better now? Or do you need more junk?

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50 responses to “German Junk-Science Round-Up. Global Warming Leads To Cyclones, Bitter Cold And La Ninas”

  1. Ed Caryl

    These stories are written by a computer. They just feed in the list of climate buzz words and phrases, select a random number generator, and out pops these stories. No human intelligence involved.
    /sarc off

  2. R. de Haan

    Just think about this: EU 2020 climate targets 3.9 trillion US dollar.
    Junk Science, real money.
    http://motls.blogspot.com/2011/02/eu-2020-climate-targets-39-trillion.html

    1. DirkH

      They needed AGW as a tool to justify spending in new grid infrastructure; and they will need to uphold the AGW religion as long as the spending goes on; it will be a tough job to explain to the public that AGW is still true even as Europe gets progressively cooler. Schellnhuber, Rahmstorf and Latif get paid to do that.

  3. Ed Caryl

    Real insanity!

    The real problem is that this amount of money distorts everything: It distorts the science into something unrecognizable. It distorts the economy into a pretzel, then burns the pretzel to ashes. But I don’t think it will happen. It is too insane to happen.

    1. Rob Honeycutt

      I guess you’re talking about the oil companies there, Ed. Right?

      What were Exxon Mobile’s profits last year? Only $53Billion.

      1. DirkH

        “Climate Money

        The Climate Industry: $79 billion so far – Trillions to come

        http://joannenova.com.au/2009/07/massive-climate-funding-exposed/

      2. DirkH

        Oh, and don’t forget that our civilisation depends on energy, so they deserve some profit. Even the uneconomic attempts at building low-density energy collectors (Wind turbines, solar panels etc.) depend on fossil fuels (you won’t run a steel factory on wind power; no sir.)

        1. Rob Honeycutt

          Not challenging whether they deserve it or not. The question is one of motivations. Right? You guys keep saying that money has corrupted science. Money is attempting to influence the politics of energy.

          Tell, honestly. What do you think a scientist’s incentive is? To get grants to study something? Usually there is very little in a grant for the lead investigator. And the really big money is for satellites. Not much money is dropping into scientist’s pockets. You guys know that.

          No. The incentive for a scientist is to get the science right. To be the one that made the most important finding. The incentive is also to be the one who conclusively overturns a given paradigm. The incentive is not to find something that AGREES with the consensus, it’s to overturn it.

          That’s why the current consensus is so important. No one is coming up with a supportable theory that truly competes with AGW. Sorry, but that’s just a fact.

          1. Green Sand

            Rob,

            I can only relate my experience about your comments (I have tried not to take them out of context)

            “Tell, honestly. What do you think a scientist’s incentive is? To get grants to study something?”

            No, it is to get funding to study what they want to study.

            “No. The incentive for a scientist is to get the science right.”

            No, it is to get funding that enables them:-

            “To be the one that made the most important finding.”

            I am cynical, but I speak from being responsible for the commissioning of research projects. The major issue was not finding the expertise and skills, but finding who it was that thought there would be a beneficial “paper” at the end of it. I was not then and still remain far from impressed with the motivation of the scientist involved. I very much doubt that anything has changed for the better.

            The research was power generation engineering based, a split “fossil” and “low carbon”

          2. DirkH

            Selling alarmist books and feeling important, of course.
            “James Hansen, climate hero: Global Warming Crisis ”
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IUVEDtmRC4M&playnext=1&list=PLF7326F3374E0BF40

            And if it takes a fraudulent treatment of data (GISTEMP).

          3. Rob Honeycutt

            Green… Right. There is the old saying: Publish or die. Right?

            So, there is an incentive to get research money. It’s a professional incentive rather than a monetary incentive, as skeptics are making it out to be.

            But that said, you get research money for saying “I’ve found something that we believe merits a better understanding.” Not for saying, “I want money to tell you what 100 other papers have already told you.”

            AND, the BIG incentive is to find something absolutely unique and groundbreaking. The greater incentive is to find the silver bullet that conclusively shows AGW wrong! No one has even come close yet. In fact, the science backing up AGW is growing stronger with each passing year.

            Scientists are not getting rich on research projects. Fossil fuel energy company executives ARE getting rich by delaying action on climate change.

          4. grayman

            What i see from the scientist, some not all mind you is they are paid a salary by the UNI. they work for and to keep employed they must get grant money, the publish or perish mantra, IMO should be stopped, and some not all will get the outcome desired to keep grant money flowing. Like i said some not all do this, not just climate science ethier, human nature for greed and other reasons, it happens so some of the science willnot be exactly correct just the mantra for more.

      3. Ed Caryl

        No Rob, I’m talking about governments. The “oil companies” (they call themselves Energy Companies) simply react in attempts to keep their profits flowing. Their profits are large because they are larger. On a percentage basis, their margins are normal. Without those margins no one will invest in them. They also don’t care which side “wins”, though they do try to steer the debate, primarily through lobbyists. They will configure themselves based on the economics. But governments have the big money.

        1. Rob Honeycutt

          Ed… I agree with much of what you said, but I do believe that current dominant energy companies (specifically fossil fuel) are very much trying to influence one side of the debate. And they are doing so, as they should, for exactly the reasons you describe. To protect profits and investments. That is their duty to their stockholders.

          This is exactly where I part ways with the Libertarians. Those companies first duty is to their stockholders, not the good of society. Broader societal health is ultimately also in the best interest of a corporation but it doesn’t fit on the quarterly reports anywhere. Corporations have a short time frame for success.

          With climate change the issue is that the reality of this issue will very clearly affect short term profits of fossil fuel based energy companies. It is in their short term best interest to disrupt the science in order to keep profits, as you said, flowing, even if that means greater costs down the road for society.

          1. Ed Caryl

            And you don’t believe that there are politicians that want to distort the science to their ends? Governments have a LOT more money than energy companies. Plus the power to tax, regulate, permit, etc. Why are we importing electricity from Mexico? Why do we import most of our Natural Gas from Canada? Oil from overseas? Answer: Government. Steered by the Environmental Lobby. Not because of anything the energy companies have done.

          2. DirkH

            “This is exactly where I part ways with the Libertarians. Those companies first duty is to their stockholders, not the good of society.”

            You forget to mention that there is a thing that is called competition. Obviously, “trusting” a company is a non-starter. You’re not parting ways with libertarians, you’re parting ways with a strawman you set up yourself.

          3. Rob Honeycutt

            Dirk… That’s right. Those companies companies that do try to apply social good will into their plans generally lose key competitiveness in delivering that very basic element that drives their stock price. Profit.

            I’m a big believer in the power of the marketplace. I’ve done quite well by the marketplace. But, yes, I do part ways with Libertarians who have this false notion that the marketplace is a cure all.

            Markets are appropriately focused on the short term. But society also has long term requirements. That is the role of Government.

          4. Rob Honeycutt

            Ed… Absolutely politicians issues to suit their constituents. But do politicians have a hand in what scientists are presenting as accurate? In some cases. The beauty of the scientific process is that it doesn’t make that much difference in the results. Ultimately the overwhelming body of evidence reveals the underlying nature of the world around us regardless of any political influence.

            All the political influence in the world can not change the radiative properties of CO2. If we each step back from our political inclinations and look at the overwhelming evidence regarding climate change the answer is quite obvious.

            Look, I’ll tell you, I have every reason to NOT want climate change to be real. I love airplanes. Since I was a small child I’ve loved flying. I’m a licensed private pilot. I’ve owned two airplanes. I desperately would love to buy another one. Diamond DA-42: http://www.diamondaircraft.com/aircraft/da42/

            But I’ve read enough science to know that we have to do something about CO2. My two small children require that their father does everything he can to try to address this issue.

          5. Ed Caryl

            Rob,
            But the energy company efforts are outweighed by government efforts. Hansen works for the government (NASA). Mann is supported by government grants and contracts. Even Phil Jones is supported by U. S. Government money. They will not cross the goose that supplies their golden eggs. I don’t know of any “skeptics” that get money from energy companies. If you do, supply names.

          6. Rob Honeycutt

            I’m sorry Ed, but there I think you are flat out wrong. Every one of those scientists only wants to get the science right. I don’t think any one of them relishes the political environment they find themselves exposed to. They just want to do their research and get the science right.

            Again, these guys are not bringing in seven figure salaries to produce the science the government wants.

          7. Rob Honeycutt

            Ed…. Dr Pat Michaels, who represented the skeptical side of the argument in front of Congress just this past December. He stated that about 40% of his funding comes from oil companies.

          8. Rob Honeycutt
          9. Ed Caryl

            Rob,
            On Think Tanks:
            The important one is Heartland Institute. Their response is here:
            http://www.heartland.org/about/truthsquad.html

          10. Ed Caryl

            Rob,
            Dr. Patrick Michael’s bio:
            http://www.cato.org/people/patrick-michaels
            Yes, he’s conservative. It also appears that he has the credentials.

          11. Ed Caryl

            Rob,
            I agree (as do most climate scientists on both sides) on the radiative properties of CO2. It is after that point that disagreements arise. You say that no one has discussed counter mechanisms. Actually several have been proposed, most involve water vapor, or clouds (the same thing). Here is a recent link to several papers on the subject.

          12. Ed Caryl
          13. Rob Honeycutt

            Ed… It’s not that no one has proposed counter mechanisms. Problem is, they don’t generally stand up to broader scrutiny. It’s very well established science that GHG’s maintain our climate within a range that suits life. The CO2 weathering thermostat mechanism is well established as how that range is maintained naturally.

            Once you diminish this this effect to low sensitivity to CO2 then you lose vast amounts of science that is extremely well explained by CO2. You lack any capacity to explain all these events. And please don’t give me the “it’s the sun” argument because that can’t be the case because of a wide variety of empirical evidence we have today.

            I know Pielke’s work. His is also not standing up to broader scrutiny. I don’t object one bit to people putting forth these ideas. It’s an important part of science but they are not fully explaining what’s going on if you take OUT, or significantly reduce, CO2 as the primary influence on climate.

    2. DirkH

      Ed, it’s 3.9 trillion for the EU over 10 years. GDP of the EU is about 15 trillion per year; so at least 150 trillion in the next decade, so it’s 2.5 % of the whole. It would be manageable. It would of course be the most giant mountain of pork the world has ever seen; but then, it’s designed as such.

  4. Slimething

    “Can I see the dragon?” answer: “No, it’s invisible.” Question: “Can I feel it? Answer; “No, it is non-corporeal?” “Can I measure the heat of its fiery breath?” No, it breaths heatless fire.” Etc.

  5. R. de Haan

    Peace is War, Freedom is Slavery and Warming is Cooling
    http://themigrantmind.blogspot.com/2011/02/war-is-peace-freedom-is-slavery-warming.html

  6. Ed Caryl

    The reason for the rolling blackouts in Texas? Power station failures in Mexico because of the cold.
    http://www.elpasotimes.com/newupdated/ci_17275212

    1. DirkH

      From the article:
      “But then, generators in some energy centers in Mexico were also damaged by the extreme cold.”

      That will become difficult for the warmists to spin.
      Dr. Roy Spencer: “Gee, maybe these snowstorms are from global cooling! Someone should look into that! (I know…cold and snow from global cooling sounds crazy….I’m just sayin’….)”
      http://www.drroyspencer.com/2011/01/omg-another-global-warming-snowstorm/

      1. slimething

        I think his recent entry is more “challenging”. http://www.drroyspencer.com/2011/02/a-challenge-to-the-climate-research-community/

        So far, John Cook hasn’t shown up to set Dr. Spencer straight, but this isn’t the first time he’s offered this challenge.

        1. Dana

          Actually I just drafted up a response for Skeptical Science. Let me know if you need help pulling your foot out of your mouth, slime.

          1. slimething

            You are publishing a paper? Well that’s great news!

        2. Rob Honeycutt

          Roy has had a fundamental break with logic on this one. He’s taking a lot of heat over this whole statement.

  7. DirkH

    As i said. Climate science – sell alarmist books and strike it famous on the TV.
    http://www.amazon.com/Frozen-Britain-Freeze-Beginning-Britains/dp/1844549895/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1296866732&sr=8-1
    “Frozen Britain: How the Big Freeze of 2010 is the Beginning of Britain’s New Mini Ice Age ”
    “Climatologist Gavin Cooke takes a comprehensive and detailed look at global warming and the “Big Freeze” of 2010 to explain how Britain will freeze before it fries.”

    Spin, Baby, Spin.

  8. Rob Honeycutt

    You personally know anyone who’s published a book before? I think you’re speculating to the extreme.

    1. DirkH

      “This week’s bestsellers
      1. Frozen Britain
      by Gavin Cooke
      £6.39”
      found on
      http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/jan/27/ban-ki-moon-un-climate-change-talks

      I guess he’s making quite a few pennies with a well-timed dystopian fantasy novel.

    2. DirkH

      And Rob, do you want me to explain to you that the income of artists like musicians or fantasy authors follow a power law, so most of them miss the big jackpot, but some of them strike it very rich? Come on now. Don’t be silly, you know it’s a hit-and-miss game. I know several fledgling authors, musicians and artists personally. And as can be expected, not one of them is successful; but the average tells us nothing in a power law distribution.

      When you can use your scientific authority as a kickstart, you might even land a TV career… people love dystopian fiction. It’s an instinct.

  9. grayman

    Rob it is the sun that is the major sun of our climate, the atmosphere is made up of approx. 70% nit. 21% oxy. and various other gasses and CO2 makes up .390 PPM, that is to small of a mix to control this planets climate.

    What is your empirical evidence? Correlation is not a cause, the study of measuring CO2 has not been long enough to say it can control climate. Iknow there have been papers on it and the IPCC also claims it but if you actually read them they say “very likely, most likely”, nothing emperical at all about it.

    I have been trying to find out if there is a system of CO2 monitoring stations around the world besides the one at Muana lua in Hawaii and i found the ESRL global monitoring web site, have not been able to find the numbers for the different stations on, no luck so far but trying. But there are 5 different ones around the globe. CO2 numbers have gone upover thet past 100 yrs. no doubt about it, but considering coming out of the little ice age 200yrs. agothe numbers just really do not add up IMO. Water vapor being 95% of the greenhouse problem it is being discarded has the problem to easly.

    1. Dana

      Gray, 99% of the atmosphere is non-GHGs. Your numbers are highly misleading.

      The IPCC defines “very likely” as over 90% probability.

      There is loads of empirical evidence. I’ve written about it at SkS if you’re willing to learn.

      1. slimething

        Are you more qualified than Joe Romm?

        “The IPCC defines “very likely” as over 90% probability.”

        Hmm, I can’t seem to find the statistical test reference in IPCC AR4 to qualify that statement. Would you happen to have one?

      2. grayman

        Hi Dana, those figures are from NASA. Personaly 100% is emperical evidence for me but in the climate, probrabiltys are like the weather itself in varabilitys. I will go over to SkS and check it out unless you have some links handy? Slimething i think i have seen it in the AR4and in AR3, would have to go back to read to be sure.

        1. Dana

          Send me an email with specifically what you’re looking for and I’ll direct you to the appropriate article.

    2. Rob Honeycutt

      Grayman… Here is a really great time chart of CO2 that maps all the measuring stations around the world.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H2mZyCblxS4

  10. grayman

    Dana, sorry forgot to add That they were aprroximate, going from memory, it is starting to slip a little with age. Will go and find them and get thier exact figures, but i believe i am in the ballpark.

  11. Bernd Felsche

    Der Spiegel may be half-accurate … heat in the Pacific does power tropical cyclones … but some of the heat comes from submarine volcanic activity. As do quite a lot of CO2 and sulphur compounds. Tectonic plates push at each other below the ocean. The region where the cyclones are “born” is very active, geologically. They may not be sufficient to cause the whole cyclone, but they may provide sufficient perturbation, chemically and thermally, to trigger one.

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