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Thread: the problem with "global climate models"

  1. #1 the problem with "global climate models" 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope sculptor's Avatar
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    recently, it seems that the global climate models(GCMs) are not capable of accurately reflecting field data.

    most recently i read from : http://web.mit.edu/jlcohen/www/papers/Cohenetal2009.pdf
    their "... the GCMs predict that winter will experience the greatest warming because of a positive feedback of increased GHGs and a diminished & darker cryosphere...however...recent winters 2000/1 to present have been...about the severity of winter and record snowfalls. Most notably Jan. 2008 was the coldest for the NH landmasses in the past 1/4 century, and the snowiest on record, ..."

    coupled with the lake E data "which would not fit within any computer climate models"

    I wonder---just how far off these models are, and why so much is based on their projections.

    The findings from Cohen et. al. (link above) provide information into an unforseen dampening system by the earth shunting some of it's atmospheric warming from the troposphere to the polar stratospheres. (disrupting the polar vortex, and sending the NH landmasses into colder and snowier winters) (relly counterintuitive to the concept of "global warming")

    It seems that the GCMs are about as accurate as old maps showing one uninterrupted ocean from the eastern shores of Japan, to the western shores of Portugal.

    Have any of you read anything about anyone reworking the GCMs?
    Or just throwing the silly nonsense out and starting over?

    is it even possible to factor in currently known data, and still have a workable model with small error bands?


    Last edited by sculptor; March 20th, 2013 at 03:29 PM.
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    Which particular GCMs? And which ones in combination with which other ones? And why do you think that this particular paper does anything more than refine a general global trend in terms of specific features in specific regions of one hemisphere?

    Just read the first and last paragraphs of the conclusions and you'll see what I mean. GCMs are not weather forecasts - and they are even less powerful at regional level. One of the features of the next IPCC report will be the attempts to give more specific and detailed regional projections.

    AFAICS the models do reasonably well most of the time. They've certainly proven themselves as far as atmospheric temperatures are concerned. They're completely out of alignment with the speed of loss of Arctic sea ice, of course, along with the accelerating occurrences of extreme weather. My suspicion is that the limitations of the ocean circulation models and/or their integration with the atmospheric models have a bit to do with this. But there's nothing remarkable or alarming about this particular paper.


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  4. #3  
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    Thanks for citing the actual paper. It makes it much easier to delve into the claims and answer questions about the details.

    A key point of the study is the New York Times quote, didn't reflect reality (aren't very relavent anyhow since even in a much warmer world cold and snow records will still be occasionally broken), but there was a grain of truth to the idea that the GCMs aren't capturing the dampened (less) warming of late winters in the Northern Hemisphere.

    "For large regions of the extratropical Northern Hemisphere landmasses, the warming is skewed toward the first half of the cold season. A marked trend reversal appears in January, with hemispheric-wide warming in OND (October to December) but large areas of cooling in JFM (January to March) and concomitant polar stratospheric warming. Whether or not this trend reversal continues, it is important to understand the physics of the underlying mechanism for a more complete understanding and more accurate predictions for anthropogenically forced climate change; the trend reversal also provides a useful model test."

    They are capturing the overall winter warming trend, but missing some dynamic responsible for much less warming than GCM predictions in late winter.

    I'll also add they resolving these sorts of differences are vital since planning future activities and impact of the rest of the environment usually come down to regional and local probability prediction.
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  5. #4  
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    My personal gripe with the golbal warmin models is that they tell us something: the planet is getting warmer, but don't tell us how that warming will immediately affect us. The pre global warming earth can be likened to a pot of soup simmering on the stove. It is in a state of dynamic homeostasis. The pot simmers but does not boil over. Now consider what happens when we turn up the heat: eventually the pot as a whole will get warmer but the immediate effect will be a vigorus boil. The pot boils over but the liquid in the pot, which was at a boil already, does not get hotter.

    In terms of weather, what this means is that global warming result in there being more energy in the weather engine which means it runs more vigorusly. Winter storms will be colder and have higher winds. Summer storms also will be more violent. The "storm of the century" happens every ten years.
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  6. #5  
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    Ok
    we've just had our coldest beginning of spring in over 60 years. Since mid/late january we've been averaging 10-20degrees below normal with a capper yesterday of 25 degrees below normal----damned curious set of circumstances.

    Currently, I'm wondering if the lowering of the boundary of the troposphere/stratosphere is at all caused by the general atmospheric warming trend, and if that is part of the mechanism which shunts excess warmth up into the polar stratosphere. Then we have a new area of focus as/re NH winters how much extra snow is lying in the drainage to the arctic ocean? How will this effect the rising dome of fresh water overlying the sea water in the beufort(sp?) gyre (which is already showing a noticable bulge), and how this will effect the outflow of arctic ocean waters into the atlantic. Will it effect the circular arctic current which (along the shores) flows opposite to the beufort gyre?
    All of this should have a pronounced effect on northern greenland, and what will that effect be?
    Meanwhile, will this disruption of the polar vortex continue to be more common, or is this a blip within a multidecadal pattern which we are seeing due to enhanced instrumentation?
    How much energy is being bled from the troposphere compared to how much energy anthropogenic green house gas increases are adding.

    'twas much easier when picturing the atmosphere as basicly a closed system, but it seems obvious that this extended extra cold in the landmasses of the NH
    has got to be having an effect on the expected changes asociated with springtime.
    (side note) vast flocks of geese have been flying overhead-----and' i am reasonably sure that finding only frozen waters is confusing the hell outa them.

    Something new to study-------really sux, but has something of an entertainment value in it.

    Irony?
    If the disruption of the polar vortex is caused by a warmer atmosphere, and what should be a 15 degree day heating load is turning into a 40-50 degree day heating load, releasing 2-3 times more greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere, where does this spiral end?
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    extended extra cold in the landmasses of the NH
    The biggest effect from the NH landmasses and the Arctic is the earlier and earlier snowmelt. This changes the albedo of the region more and earlier and leads to more heat absorbed by both land and water.

    Whatever the colder temperatures in particular months of winter might mean, for more general atmospheric and ocean warming effects this particular change in the dark of winter is likely to make much less general impact than the earlier and earlier melting of snow and ice.
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    adelady

    what you wrote seems contradictory to the current conditions when the polar vortex is interrupted, split, or diminished.
    winter here has shifted to JFM from DJF (autumn lasts into "winter" and winter lasts into "spring")

    did i forget to post:
    http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/...2_1_014007.pdf

    The question obtains-------is this actually a trend that will last and accelerate?
    The linked articles seem to indicate that it is.

    Snow and ice are more comfortable on land than at sea, and latitude and altitude come into play in determining it's eventual effects.

    in another thread, the increasing amplitude of the jetstream's meanders was addressed as a possible consequence of "global warming" (which I prefer to think of as atmospheric forcing)

    It is that pattern which we see much more often during these extended winters----higher amplitude slower progression----------

    (every new bit of knowledge leads to more questions)
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    I ain't completely confused
    but I am working at it

    ........................
    edit: here's a wild card
    http://iopscience.iop.org/1742-6596/...9_1_012238.pdf
    Last edited by sculptor; March 21st, 2013 at 12:04 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    Ok
    we've just had our coldest beginning of spring in over 60 years. Since mid/late january we've been averaging 10-20degrees below normal with a capper yesterday of 25 degrees below normal----damned curious set of circumstances.
    Why curious. From a climate perspective a single cold month, or season, for a specific location doesn't mean very much of anything.

    Currently, I'm wondering if the lowering of the boundary of the troposphere/stratosphere is at all caused by the general atmospheric warming trend,...
    Just curious where you are getting this. Models and observation both show a rising tropopause as the troposphere warms and stratosphere cools due in response to increased green house gasses.
    Last edited by Lynx_Fox; March 23rd, 2013 at 05:29 PM.
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  10. #9  
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    curious because this may be a trend......as indicated in the linked articles

    as/re the "wild card"
    don't you just hate it when someone claims a 60 year cycle and doesn't bother to mention just where in that cycle we are supposed to be?

    as/re atmosphere shrinking earthward:

    nasa noted lowering of cloud tops, and several others have noted that as the upper atmosphere cools(as predicted by global warming models) it becomes more dense, and sinks earthward.

    The Sky Is Falling, Scientists Report

    Shrinking Sky! Cloud Tops Dropping Closer to Earth, NASA Satellite Finds | Atmospheric Science & Climate Change | Cloud Formation & Height | LiveScience

    Sky actually falling, report scientists - CSMonitor.com

    RealClimate: The sky IS falling

    Global Warming Causes Stratospheric Cooling | Weather Underground

    .................

    for another wild card we could look into Lockwood et al's. work on solar irradience(or diminishment thereof) and climate

    http://solar-center.stanford.edu/sun...09RG000282.pdf

    http://rspa.royalsocietypublishing.o.../2114/303.full

    now? can we fit all these wild cards into a unified whole and model therefrom?
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    Non of those links relate your statements about lowering tropopause, so I think you have a basic misunderstanding.

    Most clouds are not at the tropopause, but at the elevation of the condensation lifting level, the point at which a rising parcel hits 100% relative humidity--you can lower average cloud height by simply adding water vapor.

    The other links were about the lowering depth of the total atmosphere in response to a colder and thinner upper atmosphere which is everything above about 10km high. The warming troposphere is only about 11km thick, while the cooling stratosphere is roughly from 11 to 50km high.

    for another wild card we could look into Lockwood et al's. work on solar irradience(or diminishment thereof) and climate

    It's interesting as a separate topic but has little to do with the inter-variability of seasonal temperatures from the OP, particularly the damped warming in the NH late winters the GCMs are missing.

    The solar variability research does however put things in a bit of perspective with respect to to the broader climate change debate. I encourage you to read the Gray et all paper results you provided a link for.

    "A value of 0.24 W m−2 solar radiative forcing difference from Maunder Minimum to the present is currentlyconsidered to be more appropriate. Despite these uncertainties in solar radiative forcing, they are nevertheless much smaller than the estimated radiative forcing due to anthropogenic changes, and the predicted SC‐related surface temperature change is small relative to anthropogenic changes."

    Current radioactive forcing from additional green house gases are in the 2W/m^2 range--that's why the authors call the solar variability range "Much smaller"

    In any case long term comparative radioactive forcing changers are worthy of a separate thread if you want to start one.
    Last edited by Lynx_Fox; March 22nd, 2013 at 08:50 AM.
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  12. #11  
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    But what would Lynx know, he's just a meteorologist.
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    Ok so I read that report a couple of times overs and there was some of the terms and data I didn't understand, but it to me at least certainly seems to suggest increasing temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere. What I did pick up on though is it was suggesting greater warming increases at higher altitudes. So I wonder if this could possibly help explain the apparant contradiction between what is been seen actually occurring on the ground the predictions form climate models.
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    Are average temperatures going down - locally, nationally or globally - as a consequence of these cold events? Are there less extreme heat events as a consequence? The overall temperature trend appears to be continuing upward. The frequency of extreme weather events appears to be continuing upward. The rate of record hot days exceeding record cold days appears to be continuing upward. The usefulness of climate modelling continues upward.

    Of course we could stick strictly to empirical and experimental evidence and ditch climate modelling - the biggest experiment so far will give results few could argue with. But I personally don't like being in the test tube.
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    And, right on time, The Guardian has an article exactly to the point.

    Scientists link frozen spring to dramatic Arctic sea ice loss | Environment | guardian.co.uk

    .... Jennifer Francis, research professor with the Rutgers Institute of Coastal and Marine Science.
    According to Francis and a growing body of other researchers, the Arctic ice loss adds heat to the ocean and atmosphere which shifts the position of the jet stream – the high-altitude river of air that steers storm systems and governs most weather in northern hemisphere."This is what is affecting the jet stream and leading to the extreme weather we are seeing in mid-latitudes," she said. "It allows the cold air from the Arctic to plunge much further south. The pattern can be slow to change because the [southern] wave of the jet stream is getting bigger. It's now at a near record position, so whatever weather you have now is going to stick around," she said.
    Francis linked the Arctic temperature rises to extreme weather in mid latitudes last year and warned in September that 2012's record sea ice melt could lead to a cold winter in the UK and northern Europe.
    She was backed by Vladimir Petoukhov, professor of Earth system analysis at Potsdam Institute in Germany, whose research suggests the loss of ice this year could be changing the direction of the jet stream.


    It's worth going to the article itself and checking out the links. There's some useful stuff there.
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    I believe that the only problem with them is that they aren't proliferated enough in a manner that makes them discernible to even the dumbest individuals within our society.
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  17. #16  
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    anyone familiar with the current progress of the athena project?

    or CMIP5?
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    CMIP5 is really focused on getting bigger, brighter, better simulations for inclusion in the next IPCC report. The most important innovation is trying to get useful, reliable, decadal level projections put together.

    RealClimate: CMIP5 simulations
    If you're really interested in models and how they are integrated to work with each other, and especially if you're interested in doing a bit of climate simulation at home, RealClimate is the place to go. They have all the climate data sources, as well as the code, for a fair few models just sitting there ready for the taking. Just click on the Data Sources link at the top of the page.

    You mean Project Athena? I realise it's MIT and it's computing, but I see no obvious link with climate modelling. Just because MIT has climate science projects and Project Athena it doesn't follow that they have anything to do with each other.

    Or is there some other project with this name.
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    the athena i referenced is by an international collaboration.. including
    medium range weather forcasting........... which was said to be being used to refine AGW / atmospheric forcing modeling
    published in part by the AMS journal

    I've yet to find any one model which is said to be developed to include the mentioned "wild cards" and mis 11 and 31, and etc...
    the more I search, the more I find field scientists writing that we need better models ---more robust, and more accurate,
    and able to predict the interactions with troposphere x stratosphere
    at the interfaces, there seems to be much dampening which noaa has partially addressed/quantified--------
    but there, it seems an isolated (unintegrated?)notation
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    Project Athena is over. It was an evaluation exercise. An Error Occurred Setting Your User Cookie

    The importance of using dedicated high-end computing resources to enable high spatial resolution in global climate models and advance knowledge of the climate system has been evaluated in an international collaboration called Project Athena. Inspired by the World Modeling Summit of 2008 and made possible by the availability of dedicated high-end computing resources provided by the National Science Foundation from October 2009 through March 2010, Project Athena demonstrated the sensitivity of climate simulations to spatial resolution and to the representation of subgrid-scale processes with horizontal resolutions up to 10 times higher than contemporary climate models. While many aspects of the mean climate were found to be reassuringly similar, beyond a suggested minimum resolution, the magnitudes and structure of regional effects can differ substantially. Project Athena served as a pilot project to demonstrate that an effective international collaboration can be formed to efficiently exploit dedicated supercomputing resources. The outcomes to date suggest that, in addition to substantial and dedicated computing resources, future climate modeling and prediction require a substantial research effort to efficiently explore the fidelity of climate models when explicitly resolving important atmospheric and oceanic processes.
    Looks to me like a group of scientists used what they had available to make a case for more funding from half a dozen governments to do things a whole lot better. Anyone who thinks that these people are likely to get the kind of money they need from countries like Canada and the USA is an optimist of the first water. The US is pulling funds out of storm/hurricane/tornado prediction for meteorology. Canada's closing down the Arctic monitoring site. Australia's likely next government will certainly not contribute anything but a token gesture. Such governments will gleefully claim that models are useless for local/timely information when it will be they themselves who made sure it couldn't happen by starving the large-scale projects required of money. (Won't help that the US at least is also cutting back on satellite data collection/processing.)
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    basic science has always been an orphan child.
    the old refrain---"what's it good for?"---What's it worth?
    (favoring utilization over knowledge)
    It doesn't help that most of our beurocrats went to advanced educational institutes to get a degree and use that to get a well paying job, rather than for a simple thirst for knowledge.

    sadly, in our newest oil boom, much of the natural gas is burned off at the well head, lacking infrastructure to pipe it to the million homes that it could heat, or even to gas fired electricity production,
    a real downside to capitalism---with low natural gas prices, no-one wants to pay for the infrastructure that would optimize the resource,and stop adding more greenhouse gas with no use

    the same is true for the acquisition of knowledge
    if you can't turn a profit on it, What's it worth?........Why should we fund it?

    I ain't usually this depressing-------must be my back ache?
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    Sorry to back track a little, but I have a hard time convincing some friends that the climate change is for real.

    So maybe a little prediction will baffle them ? If a displaced jet stream make winter *colder/later* (God, that north-west Siberian wind is never ending, it was snowing a little again today), and make autumn warmer/longer, what does it do to spring and summer ? (in Europe, and on average of course, I am not going to bet anything)
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    climate change is a bitch if we don't understand it

    I enjoyed working in the greenhouse today---it got up to 60 degrees above ambient ---that's about a 34 degree celsius gain-----------
    greenhouse effect ----nice heat, no back pain---------
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    Sorry to back track a little, but I have a hard time convincing some friends that the climate change is for real.

    So maybe a little prediction will baffle them ? If a displaced jet stream make winter *colder/later* (God, that north-west Siberian wind is never ending, it was snowing a little again today), and make autumn warmer/longer, what does it do to spring and summer ? (in Europe, and on average of course, I am not going to bet anything)
    Displaced is probably too generic a word here. The model and empirical evidence both suggest poleward moving jet streams. The more difficult question, is about amplitude. A more poleward jet stream with higher amplitude means more opportunities for high energy mid-latitude storms and higher variability of extreme cold and warm weather events through mid latitudes.
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    Sorry to back track a little, but I have a hard time convincing some friends that the climate change is for real.
    If these friends are in the US, perhaps they might pay attention to the advice from the USDA to gardeners, farmers and orchardists about the changes in hardiness zones. USDA Unveils New Plant Hardiness Zone Map / January 25, 2012 / News from the USDA Agricultural Research Service This is the best reference to use because it has all the previous zone maps right there for comparison. Put simply, the cold zones are contracting polewards.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Sorry to back track a little, but I have a hard time convincing some friends that the climate change is for real.
    If these friends are in the US, perhaps they might pay attention to the advice from the USDA to gardeners, farmers and orchardists about the changes in hardiness zones. USDA Unveils New Plant Hardiness Zone Map / January 25, 2012 / News from the USDA Agricultural Research Service This is the best reference to use because it has all the previous zone maps right there for comparison. Put simply, the cold zones are contracting polewards.
    Interesting maps, but, my friends live in Belgium, and they are still freezing :-)

    Part of the problem is that in french, we use "réchaufement climatique" a mix between "global warning" and "climate change". Because the immediate feel is cold, or wet, or even the absence of sun (record broken in January), people just cannot believe that "warm is coming".
    In fact, even if those event seems odd, and in fact represent kind of change in the weather, there is always those that says "strange" event always happens, and they even-out in the end. Which is kind a correct.
    The only "real" argument is the melting ice (polar caps or local glacier), but there is no kind of urgency associated with that.
    There is an hypothesis about a change of the Gulf Stream path in northern Atlantic, but I don't know if sign of that is measured. It would be a game changer.
    So meanwhile I resort the melodramatic stance like that. It does not seems to help.
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    Belgium? If they're adults then they should remember the 70,000 death toll of the 2003 European heatwave.

    Or are these people the sort who think that "warming" means a-little-bit-warmer-each-and-every-year? Perhaps you should emphasise the climate change aspect a bit more. Which basically means seasons becoming less and less predictable, more and more variable. Heatwaves and cold 'snaps' becoming a) more extreme, b) much more persistent.

    The extreme flooding in Britain this year is a 'classic' sign of climate change from warming - because a warmer atmosphere holds more water vapour, but that water vapour has the same physical properties of condensing out. Hence more downpours, more flooding and more frequent flooding.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Belgium? If they're adults then they should remember the 70,000 death toll of the 2003 European heatwave.
    If by adults you mean older than 20, then yes, more like 40. If you mean able to worried about a fact in the past, and how it may affect their future, you'd be surprise how adults are a scarce resources. After all, the armful thing always lay in the future, and they worried about that.
    That is why I think it is required to kind of "impress" them by actual prediction. Climate and his chaotic behavior is eluding they alert system, because of its lack of predictability After all even a simple volcano it something human are ready to build they house upon. Another example of impressibility turned into a catastrophe.
    In both cases the time window is important, if it is below the "generation" (lets says 20 year), then the "after me comes the flood" takes precedence.

    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Or are these people the sort who think that "warming" means a-little-bit-warmer-each-and-every-year?
    Yes they do. And they should. That is the dictionary definition. That is why I don't use that term anymore. It is misleading. Because "climate change" is also "benign" in its form and even have a positive ring to it (here the climate sucks (or so they think) so a change may be ok), I force myself to use "déreglement climatique", which in english would be "climate derangement". I do think the wording is important.

    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Perhaps you should emphasise the climate change aspect a bit more. Which basically means seasons becoming less and less predictable, more and more variable. Heatwaves and cold 'snaps' becoming a) more extreme, b) much more persistent.

    The extreme flooding in Britain this year is a 'classic' sign of climate change from warming - because a warmer atmosphere holds more water vapour, but that water vapour has the same physical properties of condensing out. Hence more downpours, more flooding and more frequent flooding.
    I do, but there is a scientific problem here, because "climate" is an average on too big a period to accurately describe a "change". Extreme floods are a much impressive thing, and that much is less forgotten then "warm", even if the death toll is bigger for heat waves.

    A climate is a very complicated thing, and generally studied based on archaeological science. People won't easily get it.
    I have discovered recently than even of much more simple "science" based of simple quantity drilled and then burned into precise and predictable technology are also beyond the care reach of average adults, which are happy to deny the obvious, and to worried about "real" problem, like the "economic crisis" and how to enslave us better to the banking system.

    Go figure.
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    A climate is a very complicated thing, and generally studied based on archaeological science.
    That's not quite right. The basic science of climate is physics.

    The paleoclimate work is the best proof that our understanding of the physics is right.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    ... The paleoclimate work is the best proof that our understanding of the physics is right.
    As was previously noted as/re the lake el'gygytgyn field studies: It is also the "best proof" that our climate models still need a lot of work.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    A climate is a very complicated thing, and generally studied based on archaeological science.
    That's not quite right. The basic science of climate is physics.
    Well yes and no. The basis is mathematics, and all the physical data your are gonna inject into your model, and the quality of the software and the power of the hardware.
    The physics needed (energy absorption of such and such gazes, heat transfer, ...)is old and "well known". The simple accounting of the quantities of the anthropic impact (emission...) is a nightmare and sometime as fuzzy as 20 % precision.

    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    The paleoclimate work is the best proof that our understanding of the physics is right.
    I would have said it the other way round, but they do tell the history of climate, and can validate the backward prevision power of any model.
    The problem is that the *various* anthropic effects could never be verified like that, and that we are interested by the forward prevision capacity of models.

    Or are we ? Anyway how can we change the change ? Given the butterfly effect and intrinsic chaotic behavior of climate and that humans act more like a nest of enraged hornets than gentle butterflies...
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    Well yes and no. The basis is mathematics, and all the physical data your are gonna inject into your model, and the quality of the software and the power of the hardware.
    The physics needed (energy absorption of such and such gazes, heat transfer, ...)is old and "well known". The simple accounting of the quantities of the anthropic impact (emission...) is a nightmare and sometime as fuzzy as 20 % precision.
    Not sure why you are creating an artificial divide in the description when for the most part they are inseparable as in most modern natural sciences, especially the physical ones such as climatology. While as you infer much of the basic physics is known such as the complete laws on Newtonian motion and radiative transfer, some is also partially unknown such as non-dynamics of glacies movement, or too computationally demanding to include, such as convective cloud entrainment. The unknowns or most demanding are simplified into various parametrization to simplify them in the models while still representing them for inputs into the rest of the model. Adelady's key point though is they are based, for the most part in physical laws, not pure stochastic tunable relationships.

    The problem is that the *various* anthropic effects could never be verified like that, and that we are interested by the forward prevision capacity of models
    Their use has been to narrow down the margin of sensitivities which can be applied to forward looking models to a large extent.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Not sure why you are creating an artificial divide in the description when for the most part they are inseparable as in most modern natural sciences,
    Because I place "theoretical physics" at the opposite spectrum of climatology, science wise. I don't do that for the gist of it, but because there are two different beast with completely different goal and method (ok it is the scientific method, but let me explain...).

    One sucks billions of bucks, and the best math genius to mindlessly collide billions of the exact same particle with an energy of a order precision only nerds can comprehend, do the experiment billions of times to crunch the result much like gold miners would filter tons of sand to find a small gold nugget (or God Particle) that won't ever be of any use, but which would be very precise and very unique.

    The other "physics" make do in urgency with inappropriate funding and a complete and an entire hostile society (especially the industrial complex driven by the financial system) which just cannot deal with the bad news that is coming and that not money nor weapon could be made out of that science. The processes uses ad-hoc fix and computer simulation not very different from pac-man to try to predict an outcome out of a system composed of billions of billions of billions (of...) of variables 50% of which cannot even be approximated correctly.
    The actual theory it is based upon state that even a system with tree ridiculously simple variable, it is entirely chaotic. Lorenz was a meteorologist no ? I think he had a point.

    The second one is doomed, and need not only a boost, but a revolution in mathematics (call it physics if you will) simply to be able to answer the basics of questions.

    Now let me say something else. The kind of scientific approach used now (brute force computing) is useless. After all who cares were the next "perfect storm/drought" will hit ? Are we gonna have to use run all simulation for all possible "corrective action" and all their combinations to see if there is a possibility to tame the "change" ? Have we got an eternity to wait ?

    Do you think politician will do with "there is 0.6 chance" that things go better if we do this, that and such, but only very precisely and in perfect timing with the rest of the world. Ho and yes, there are other countries that will get worse in that case, try to convince them. Hint: nuking them is not a option.

    I say, right now there is not a single doctorate thesis on the planet that should be allowed to work on problems unrelated to climate/energy and our fucking Dino's poo addiction.
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    The other "physics" make do in urgency with inappropriate funding
    You do realize that physics and climatology are for the most part funded by exactly the same sources the vast majority through governments channels either directly into research organizations embeded into organizations like NOAA, NASA, DOD or vetted through independent federal agencies such as the National Science Foundation for University researchers. Heck they often share time on the same supercomputers.

    After all who cares were the next "perfect storm/drought" will hit ?

    Again you seem to misunderstand climate. What you are talking about is a weather event--that the "when". What we would like climate models to do however is give us probability models of such events that further be incorporated into risk assessments useful to planning at the Federal, State and County level. For my area, an example might be another record flooding of the Chehalis river-- we can't expect to know its level next December 20th, but if authorities and homeowners knew with some confidence whether there's a 0.1% or 10% of a proposed housing development being flooded in the next ten years they'd plan accordingly.


    The actual theory it is based upon state that even a system with tree ridiculously simple variable, it is entirely chaotic. Lorenz was a meteorologist no ? I think he had a point.

    You should probably go back and read some on chaos theory. Weather is not entirely chaotic, but follows pretty easily distinguishable patterns that both allow stochastic predictions of conditions past the specific forecast ability of models and can be applied to climate. Climate, physics and just about every other natural science incorporates chaos theory into its modeling.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    You do realize that physics and climatology are for the most part funded by exactly the same sources the vast majority through governments channels...

    No kidding... is there something on earth not payed for by "tax money" ?
    I am talking about priority. Do you say that they share the same amount of resource, or that they should ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post

    After all who cares were the next "perfect storm/drought" will hit ?

    Again you seem to misunderstand climate. What you are talking about is a weather event--that the "when".

    No I am not. And I think you see the point. Event at that level of "probability assessment", it is nearly useless. Do you need climatologist to stay out of river bed ? or to compute assurance companies bills ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    The actual theory it is based upon state that even a system with tree ridiculously simple variable, it is entirely chaotic. Lorenz was a meteorologist no ? I think he had a point.
    You should probably go back and read some on chaos theory.

    You bet I'll do that. And as usual I'll read that weather is entirely chaotic. Even climate are. Lats time I check, the best model was always passing trough a "white ball" earth, with not way out.

    I don't diminish the 'science' of pattern guessing or stochastic predictions, but I can also watch the sky in the morning to know how to dress myself.


    Be the weather or the climate, both patterns are very distinguishable, even if *always different*, that is the "problem".
    But you seem to have first hand knowledge on all the breakthroughs in that science recently.I suppose there is nothing to be worried about then. Even if the countless satellite and new atmospheric or sea probes and the mind boggling power improvement of computer have visibly no measurable impact on the predictive ability of the weather man.

    Let's hope climatologists are more lucky... meanwhile, I am learning to swim...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boing3000 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    You do realize that physics and climatology are for the most part funded by exactly the same sources the vast majority through governments channels...

    No kidding... is there something on earth not payed for by "tax money" ?


    Across all sciences, the government provides less than 25% of funding. Most of the rest is done by industries. Climate and physics are both mostly by the government.


    I am talking about priority. Do you say that they share the same amount of resource, or that they should ?

    As for which should be a priority, I'm not sure and it's well beyond the OP.


    No I am not. And I think you see the point. Event at that level of "probability assessment", it is nearly useless. Do you need climatologist to stay out of river bed ? or to compute assurance companies bills ?

    No homes are built in river beds. If however you are a farmer, or a home developer, or an insurer, you have great interest in knowing probabilities of flooding. Flooding calculation are a combination of climate, weather, topology and hydrological modeling for every changing land-use. It's a great deal more complex than you infer.

    You bet I'll do that. And as usual I'll read that weather is entirely chaotic. Even climate are. Lats time I check, the best model was always passing trough a "white ball" earth, with not way out.

    Entirely chaotic events don't follow well patterned distributions. What model? Which run did that?


    But you seem to have first hand knowledge on all the breakthroughs in that science recently.I suppose there is nothing to be worried about then. Even if the countless satellite and new atmospheric or sea probes and the mind boggling power improvement of computer have visibly no measurable impact on the predictive ability of the weather man.
    Actually weather forecast has improved significant over the past few decades. Climate models are also verifying at much higher levels across broad regional and larger areas. Coupling them with other global models and getting to the details of providing data for local conditions continues.
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    The processes uses ad-hoc fix and computer simulation not very different from pac-man to try to predict an outcome out of a system composed of billions of billions of billions (of...) of variables 50% of which cannot even be approximated correctly.
    I think you might be mixing up climatology and meteorology here. Climate models are set up with the relevant physics equations and allowed to run - often, but not always, with some specified preconditions. The ones with no preconditions come up with climate features like ENSO variations with absolutely no prompting from the initial equations, which is a pretty good indication of just how well they work. The ones with preconditions like, say, snowball earth are also pretty good at showing just what does and doesn't have explanatory power for how things did turn out.

    Meteorology on the other hand is beset by the problem of initial conditions. They have terrific equations about what does and doesn't happen in certain circumstances, but they can never, ever gather all the relevant information (in the short time-frames) about current conditions at all locations, distances, latitudes, heights that might affect the progress of various weather systems. They're obviously getting better - you only need to look at how much more tightly they can now specify the tracks of storms and hurricanes compared to 20+ years ago to see that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Across all sciences, the government provides less than 25% of funding. Most of the rest is done by industries. Climate and physics are both mostly by the government.

    I think you mix up science and technology, close cousin maybe, but completely different goal.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post

    I am talking about priority. Do you say that they share the same amount of resource, or that they should ?
    As for which should be a priority, I'm not sure and it's well beyond the OP.

    Not if you think the "problem with climate model" render them useless. If you think it is still a tool that we need to improve, the question of allocating resource or re-factoring the science and prioritizing effort may be the first important thing to do.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post

    No homes are built in river beds.

    Please, that is not funny. You should go out a little more. But you may be correct about Dutchland, they don't build houses in river bed, in fact half the country is below sea level.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post

    If however you are a farmer, or a home developer, or an insurer, you have great interest in knowing probabilities of flooding. Flooding calculation are a combination of climate, weather, topology and hydrological modeling for every changing land-use.

    Not at all. You just have to see if the next river is 20 feet below yours, before building your house, if you can afford that luxury.
    Flooding cost are accounted after the disaster, when insurance companies has to be bailed out, or the cost of all insurance owner (they is everybody, by law, which is first grade taxed money, disguised as private equity) goes trough the roof.
    Simple math.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post

    It's a great deal more complex than you infer.

    I was thinking that I was the one that think the problem is so complex that we didn't have even the the right intellectual tool to address it.
    I must have been drown somewhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post

    You bet I'll do that. And as usual I'll read that weather is entirely chaotic. Even climate are. Lats time I check, the best model was always passing trough a "white ball" earth, with not way out.

    Entirely chaotic events don't follow well patterned distributions. What model? Which run did that?

    I may have made a big memory error there, in fact model fails to reproduce that

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post

    Actually weather forecast has improved significant over the past few decades. Climate models are also verifying at much higher levels across broad regional and larger areas. Coupling them with other global models and getting to the details of providing data for local conditions continues.
    I do agree. Maybe that incredible amount of new technological resources and brute force computing power have increased weather forecast accuracy from 3 day to 5 ?
    Cool.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Climate models are set up with the relevant physics equations..
    I would like to know what you are talking about.
    You can write all the best equations you want like Navier-Strokes and still not be able to compute anything, even the simplest one are chaotics...
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    You can write all the best equations you want like Navier-Strokes and still not be able to compute anything,
    Absolutely right, but I'm not a climate scientist. These people are seriously good at physics and maths and computing.

    If you are really interested in climate modelling, this is an example Climate change and the jet stream | ClimateSight of the work of a student in climate science. It's also worth having a bit of a look at other posts, I like this one A Visit to NCAR | ClimateSight .

    Though I should warn anyone who does so that the comments can very quickly get waaaaaay above my pay grade. A lot of expert advice about how to use component sections of climate models, comparisons of different models, along with finer technical details of programming. There's a group of experienced people who take a real interest in Kate's progress in her studies and it sometimes turns into a bit of a tutorial/master-class. If you do know anything about these things, this is a good blog to follow.
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    Science is a sort of business especially in regards to concepts such as global warming. Without a model and somewhat believable research no one would buy it. These models can be manipulated for profit and in the best case scenarios leave out unknown data that would alter the results. There are some truths found in the history of the earth.
    1. The climate has always been changing and because of this past history it is certain that climate will continue to change.
    2. With these changes a series of ecological successions occur.
    3. These ecological successions affect life on earth.

    Now this science is being used to support green energy at an outrageous cost.
    Claim: Germany Spends $110 Billion to Delay Global Warming by 37 Hours | The Weekly Standard
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    These people are seriously good at physics and maths and computing.
    That I don't doubt.
    Thanks for those interesting links, I 'll try to get my hand on those 500.000 lines of codes, and have a look, it is really not a big project...
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    Quote Originally Posted by pineapple007 View Post
    Science is a sort of business especially ...
    Especially since late 19th century were (until than) only noble with slaves can have the luxuries of free time to interest themselves in "magic" and organize some late night parties to show-of they knowledge and get laid. That is called "social climate change"

    Anyway, your 3 points are very correct, but they are totally unrelated to the interview (itself very correct). Maybe you should explain why you think they are related (beside Fox neo-con trying to bach on anything green).

    The guy is advocating for better green investment. For the following reason:
    Previous significant change in climate occurs over very long period of time.
    Since 65 million years ago (Ma), Earth's climate has undergone a significant and complex evolution, the finer details of which are now coming to light through investigations of deep-sea sediment cores. This evolution includes gradual trends of warming and cooling driven by tectonic processes on time scales of 105to 107years, rhythmic or periodic cycles driven by orbital processes with 104- to 106-year cyclicity, and rare rapid aberrant shifts and extreme climate transients with durations of 103 to 105 years
    We are know talking of a time scale of 100 year or less. I hope you see the difference between selection and extinction, because I don't know any vegetable that can outrun such a pace, and no food chain without vegetables. The sea may also became a barren soup. For millions of years....

    The solar panel is clearly a bubble (and unsustainable technology). In southern Belgium, the panel subsidies bubble has reach 2 Billions euro for only 4 millions people. Not counting the grid needed adaptation cost (estimate 1.5 billion euro). Now if the sun shine too much (ok the risk is low) fuses blow everywere on the local grids...

    Anyway, those panel are real, and the solar mils also. They may be somewhat inefficient, but better than wishful thinking.

    But you are right, we should only subsidies universities and non-profit organization, to be sure the green evolution has any chance to replace our local an now depleted cheap oil based society.

    Aouch, I am out of OP, again...
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    Aouch, I am out of OP, again...

    Yes you are. It's not only NOT OK, it's making you arguments nearly impossible to follow.

    So please lets return to the OP or close tangents, not broad unproductive generalizations about the whole of climate science. If you wish to address something not directly related simply start another thread.
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    The point I'm trying to make is these models for understanding climate change are somewhat subjective and used for political or monetary gains for the most part. Since there isn't an accurate yearly starting point or ending point of the planets and the sun it would be impossible for any model to be accurate.
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    The point I'm trying to make is these models for understanding climate change are somewhat subjective and used for political or monetary gains for the most part. Since there isn't an accurate yearly starting point or ending point of the planets and the sun it would be impossible for any model to be accurate.
    Once again. Climate models are not statistical models, they are physical models. There's nothing "subjective" about radiative transfer equations, or Napier-Stokes or fluid mechanics generally, nor about the known radiative properties of individual gases.

    I know people say that climate is just 30 years of weather but that's not really true. That's a relic of the days when meteorologists regarded climatologists as the insignificant nerds in the backrooms trying to gather enough data from information collected for other purposes to make more general statements. Now meteorology is seen as the local and specific application of more general climatological principles. Climatologists are interested in how many storms occur in seasons, regions or hemispheres. Meteorologists have to predict when, where and how badly a specific storm is going to impact particular communities.

    If you're really interested in how scientific concepts are used for climatology, a good starting point might be The Science of Doom | Evaluating and Explaining Climate Science. This blogger runs really good series of posts looking fairly deeply into how specific things are used, along with all the whys and wherefores. The current series is on radiative forcing. I might add he dives fearlessly into physics concepts and equations, and often loses me along the way.

    If you're interested in how statistics are used in climatology and some other scientific matters, Grant Foster's Open Mind blog is terrific. Open Mind | Science, Politics, Life, the Universe, and Everything
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    Quote Originally Posted by pineapple007 View Post
    ... Since there isn't an accurate yearly starting point or ending point of the planets and the sun it would be impossible for any model to be accurate.
    explain please
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    sculptor - I took that start and end point comment to mean that pineapple007 was thinking in terms of needing statistical data to determine climate information. Sort of like financial statistics from year to year.

    I'm sure we'll find out soon enough if I'm mistaken in that.
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    and, here I had thought that it might have something to do with interplanetary gravitational forcings, speeding up and slowing down the orbits or effecting the eccentricities(which happens, but I don't know the specific ammts.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pineapple007 View Post
    ... Since there isn't an accurate yearly starting point or ending point of the planets and the sun it would be impossible for any model to be accurate.
    explain please
    The solar system and the entire universe is in constant motion. This link explains the orbital cycles.
    Everything you need to know about Earth's orbit and climate change | MNN - Mother Nature Network
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    Quote Originally Posted by pineapple007 View Post
    The solar system and the entire universe is in constant motion. This link explains the orbital cycles.
    Everything you need to know about Earth's orbit and climate change | MNN - Mother Nature Network
    Pineapple stop bothering us with irrelevant nonsense.

    As for the relative effects of having another Maunder Minimum, because it's but a fraction of changing radiative forcing from greenhouse gasses, it wouldn't help by much--buying us a perhaps a decade to figure out things. Here's a comparison of several global climate models run with increased greenhouse gas emissions under current 11 year solar irradiation cycle (solid lines), and under Maunder Minimum conditions (dashed lines).

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    What on earth does this have to do with the discussion? Apart from Milankovich cycles I suppose.

    And let's read the end of the conclusion - carefully - three or four times over. Especially the very last sentence.

    But a secondary lesson also lurks: Anthropogenic global warming, which climate scientists overwhelmingly believe is the prime culprit in our current warming trend, is at least powerful enough in the short term to counteract a relatively cool orbital phase. It's a fact that should at least give us pause to consider the profound effect that humans can have on the climate even against a backdrop of Earth's natural cycles.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    What on earth does this have to do with the discussion?
    Ho, but I think he his right in the point, by being totally irrelevant. Let me try to explain that again, why this seem to be out of OP but is precisely the problem with global climate model.

    The problem is time scale, the cause is anthropogenic. Does the models include the German decision to go out of nuclear and go full coal instead ? Does the model include green lobying that have successfully convince everybody (including you) that solar panel is the solution ?
    Because with this kind of incentive for coal (add the end of oil which you still don't get)), when everybody will do like germans, persuaded to be the greenest guy around, the CO2 emission will INCREASE twofold.

    Does models include a global economic recession, and its chaotic effect on human emission ?

    Does model include the effect of the.science.forum and the Internet will have on global mentality by debunking the mediatic lies fuel by corporate greed or technocopian loonies ?

    Does model compute the un-decision of people like pineapple007 will un-make because they think all this is a scam, while politician will resist decision driven by scientist who have toy-model that does not and CANNOT include the MOST important variables, that is present and future antropic effects ?
    I think it is time to read for the fifth time :
    It's a fact that should at least give us pause to consider the profound effect that humans can have on the climate even against a backdrop of Earth's natural cycles.
    The problem with climate global model is that they DELUDE you for establishing SOLUTION which start with getting rid of that

    Yes we can.

    And if we cannot not, nature will get rid of that and the fucking stupid species that got this bright idea...
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    The problem is time scale, the cause is anthropogenic. Does the models include the German decision to go out of nuclear and go full coal instead ? Does the model include green lobying that have successfully convince everybody (including you) that solar panel is the solution ?
    Because with this kind of incentive for coal (add the end of oil which you still don't get)), when everybody will do like germans, persuaded to be the greenest guy around, the CO2 emission will INCREASE twofold.

    Does models include a global economic recession, and its chaotic effect on human emission ?
    Now you're talking about using the models to do projections. That's problematic because the model has to have "forcings" introduced deliberately. It doesn't really matter what the details are in terms of power generation options, all the modellers do is to specify particular rates of increase/reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. They usually choose 3 to 5 possible scenarios when preparing projections for IPCC reports but, surprise, surprise, we've never had emissions progress the following years in exactly the way they were in projections.

    By and large, they're pretty good.

    The scientists have been shouting pretty loudly for a fair while that this is all getting out of hand. But they're not the ones with the power to implement the policies that are needed. And don't diss Germany, they're doing more and better than most other countries.

    Back to this.
    solar panel is the solution
    In a country like Australia, solar is pretty close to a solution. Our little rooftop system is giving us more power than we use for 6 months of the year. And that excess is larger than the deficits for summer and winter. So, year-round, our roof is providing more power than we need. If you think about redesigning a few household appliances so that they work on batteries, or we can have household scale power storage (say by using oversized solar hot water services) and my household would not even need power from the grid overnight except in the worst of summer heat or winter cold.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Which particular GCMs?
    I believe he is referring to this:


    OVER the past 15 years air temperatures at the Earth’s surface have been flat while greenhouse-gas emissions have continued to soar. The world added roughly 100 billion tonnes of carbon to the atmosphere between 2000 and 2010. That is about a quarter of all the CO₂ put there by humanity since 1750. And yet, as James Hansen, the head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, observes, “the five-year mean global temperature has been flat for a decade.”

    Temperatures fluctuate over short periods, but this lack of new warming is a surprise. Ed Hawkins, of the University of Reading, in Britain, points out that surface temperatures since 2005 are already at the low end of the range of projections derived from 20 climate models (see chart 1). If they remain flat, they will fall outside the models’ range within a few years.
    So 25% of the total emissions of CO2 since 1750 have been released since the year 2000 with no rise in temperature whatsoever and, according to the Economist, temperatures will soon fall outside of the range predicted by "the models" and are already at the extreme low end of that range.
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    The Economist article exaggerates what is too short a trend to be considered climate. An expanded chart of surface temperatures over the past half century shows the short period variations and range. If the relative flat temperatures continue for another ten years or so, then we'll be able to reach a conclusion that the models are missing something:

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    Quote Originally Posted by madanthonywayne View Post
    So 25% of the total emissions of CO2 since 1750 have been released since the year 2000 with no rise in temperature whatsoever and, according to the Economist, temperatures will soon fall outside of the range predicted by "the models" and are already at the extreme low end of that range.
    I though first that the explanation was that the latest 11-sun cycle was at its lowest and unusualy long during that period, and that it could compensate ... but than I read that, which say it is in fact the opposite
    Contrary to expectations, the net amount of solar energy reaching Earth's troposphere — the lowest part of the atmosphere — seems to have been larger in 2007 than in 2004, despite the decline in solar activity over that period.

    Maybe the heat has find its way into other form, or other place, like ocean temperature, kinetics of the atmosphere/sea current, or whatever. After all a lot of solid ice have been heated enough to turn liquid in this period. It is not enough to account for the missing atmospheric joules ?
    (BTW interesting albedo increase in Antartica, does any model have simulate that ?)
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    It is already obvious that the models have fallen short of being able to encompass known field data. Then "positions" based on those models must be brought into an understanding of those limitations. The wonderful thing about field data based science is that as we develope more and better ways of studying our planet and it's atmospheric layers, our understanding of the gestalten of our climate and weather can expand. We are as children just beginning to understand our environment, and only by keeping open minds, can we inculcate the ever expanding range of knowledge.

    So much becomes obvious in hindsight if only we keep looking.
    We have seen many points here, and in other forums that needs be incorporated into the GCMs. Who would have thought that much tropospheric heat could be shunted into the stratosphere 10 short years ago? But, now we see the movement of energy through the tropopause over the poles, and, in hindsight, it seems only obvious that warmer atmospheric temperatures would be gathered up in the mid latitudes, and shunted poleward where the tropopause is closer to the earth. 10 short years ago, no-one conceived of the super interglacials within this current ice age which came to light through the Lake El'gygytgyn research. As CO2 has doubled, so to, have our research satelites doubled, studying the atmosphere at ever greater heights and in greater detail. Only recently has plasma transfer from the sun to the earth been recognized and studied. Only recently have we been able to study the van allen plasma belts surrounding the earth, and each new discovery leads to enhanced instrumentation and ever more discoveries.

    whither hence?
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    (BTW interesting albedo increase in Antartica, does any model have simulate that ?)
    There is no albedo increase in Antarctica that I've heard of. There is a noticeable increase in winter sea ice extent - no help to albedo when the sun don't shine - but that was predicted over 20 years ago,
    Manabe 1991 http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/bibliograph...les/sm9101.pdf, p 795.

    Have a look at Tamino here - Antarctic Sea Ice Gain | Open Mind
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Cool stuff, again. Thanks.
    Anyway, the "when the sun's shining" argument is working on both hemisphere. So I doubt the 2% increase is unnoticeable in "hot/summer" which is still freezing cold.

    The point is that heat energy increase seems to be disproportionately accelerating trough the northern hemisphere (more land and no ice land cap). I don't dare imagining the Groenland turned green.
    At some point the Antarctic will melt anyway and the pendulum will swing back that much harder.
    I am wondering ,with time frames that are so small, if we should speak about climate or weather "model"
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    Greenland won't turn green, it will be mostly blue.

    It's actually a basin surrounded by mountains - when ocean water gets under the huge lump of ice in the centre - the ice can float away leaving behind a chain of islands. Though the gravitational effects will mean that the consequent surge in sea level rise will happen on the other side of the world. Not good news for Indonesia or the islands in the Bay of Bengal. Greenland, Scotland, Norway and Newfoundland will see a fairly large rise out of the water as the pressure of all that ice is removed from their land area. Jerry Mitrovica, Harvard University - YouTube The video is 30 minutes, but it's worth every minute. I find it fascinating.
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    forget about ocean water getting under the center of the greenland ice sheet.
    it ain't gonna happen.

    Map of Antarctic bedrock elevation now available in Atlas of the Cryosphere

    3 things
    1) greenland's glacial exits are already above sea level
    2) as the ice melts, the land will rise(rebound) when freed from the weight of all that ice
    3) as the ice melts, greenland will loose all that gravitational mass, and local sea levels will fall as much more water flows toward the equator
    4) it has been estimated that even with the temperatures of the eemian(+ up to 6 degrees) not all of the ice melted, and with those temperatures it might take up to 40,000 years to melt all of greenland's ice

    the west antarctic ice sheet is the one to watch------if the south pacific warms and strong westerlies batter the expanded shallower ice, the west antarctic may collapse with amazing speed
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    greenland's glacial exits are already above sea level
    I have no idea what this means. The glacial exits are in direct contact with the sea - the "tongue" of some glaciers is on the water, it detaches because of the changes in pressure on the ice, partly caused by the lift from the water beneath the final section. Some glaciers that have already retreated may now be terminating in lakes or dams.

    If you're really interested in glaciers try Mauri Spelto's blog. Apuserajik Glacier Retreat, southeast Greenland | From a Glaciers Perspective Click all the links.

    Anyway, doesn't help a lot for the parts of the interior that are below sea level. Water needs only one way in - once in it will go to the lowest point available. This is an old geography item, but it's clear enough. Greatest Places: Notes: Greenland

    The bedrock beneath the ice is an eastern extension of the Canadian Shield, the expanse of ancient granite rock that makes up much of Canada's vast interior lowland plain. The surface of the bedrock is far from even. In some places it lies below sea level, while elsewhere it rises up to form high mountain ranges. (The highest peak in Greenland, Mount Gunnbjorn in the eastern coastal range, reaches 12,139 feet.) In overall contours the land surface beneath the ice is more or less saucer-shaped, with a central depression bordered by mountain ranges.
    The lowest part of that saucer is below sea level.

    Ice melt and land rebound are not simultaneous events. We're still seeing the effects of rebound from the last great melt of the ice sheets 10000+ years ago.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    I find it fascinating.
    Me too! Did I heard correctly (for a 1 m global rise rise from Greenland sourced ice), the sea shore level of Green Land would lower 25 m ? I didn't know that gravitation would have such a local effect.
    Yet another variable for model, because not only salinity etc but the very shape of the geography of air land and sea will go nuts in feed back effects....
    I am more concerned about albedo, which (with a big lake or not in the center) is going to be way on the decline, and in my view is the worst accelerating feedback parameter.
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    in my view is the worst accelerating feedback parameter.
    Good call. We've been so goggle-eyed watching the ice disappear from the Arctic ocean, we sometimes need reminding to look at the same satellite pictures displaying the loss of ice and snow on land - earlier and earlier every year.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    glacial exits = where the ice flows into the sea
    the tongues do float as they trvel out to sea, but the underlying rocky shore rises above sea level
    once the glaciers have lowered the ice cap to below the shore line, they stop flowing seaward, and sit there as grounded ice
    melting slowly without the help of the sea
    grounded ice melts much more slowly than floating ice
    unless
    (as previously stated) greenland gets lots of rain while temperatures stay above freezing
    the deep ice cores seem to indicate that not all of greenlands ice melted during the last interglacial
    and
    all the ice cores taken so far are of fresh-water ice---by some estimates, greenland is said to hold 8% of the earth's fresh water, and greenland and antarctica are estimated to contain 99% of the earth's fresh water ice--------------note the absence of any mention of saltwater ice

    saucer shaped--indeed
    center below sea level--fer shure
    however
    i reiterate
    "forget about ocean water getting under the center of the greenland ice sheet.
    it ain't gonna happen."

    it'll be melting into a fresh water lake
    long after you and I are dead and decayed into our organic constituants

    -------------------------
    that being said:

    with the warmer winter temperatures over the canadien arctic islands, and northern greenland this past winter due to the disruption of the polar vortex, and resulting spread of the arctic cold over much of the northern hemisphere's land masses--------
    i'm gonna offer up another
    (wild guess du jour)
    we seem likely to see accelerated melting of the arctic and greenland and the islands-- elesmere, baffin, etc... this summer
    unless (of course)
    the aforementioned lower solar activity leads to a cooler mid latitude summer

    worst or best case, kinda depends on your perspective
    ........
    edit--epimetheus
    here's an interesting read as/re greenland ice
    http://www.falw.vu/~renh/pdf/Renssen-etal-ClimDyn05.pdf
    has to do with what the ice can tell us about the earlier holocene
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    it'll be melting into a fresh water lake
    long after you and I are dead and decayed into our organic constituants
    I plant trees that will live long after me. I care for family heirlooms that will be handed on to people I will never know.

    The fact that some things that concern me for society at large will never affect me personally doesn't lessen my concern.
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    agreed

    i've always liked the motto
    "make of this world a better place"
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