Monday, August 16, 2010

Big Tim and Mrs Pailing beat Academy to the punch

In a report titled "Scientists unite in fresh warming warning" ABC's PM interview ANU's Prof. Kurt Lambeck about a new pamphlet from the Australian Academy of Science (AAS) spruiking climate alarmism. Professor Lambeck sees the "quality of the science improving with time" and with the publication of papers such as:
"A statistical analysis of Multiple Temperature proxies: Are reconstructions of surface temperatures over the last 1000 years reliable" by McShane and Wyner recently published in the Annals of Applied Statistics; and
"On the Diagnosis of Radiative Feedback in the Presence of Unknown Radiative Forcing" by
Spencer, R. W., and W. D. Braswell in press at the Journal of Geophysical Research,
"A Critical Review of Global Surface Temperature Data Products" by Ross McKitrick SRN working paper,
"Panel and Multivariate Methods for Tests of Trend Equivalence in Climate Data Series" by Ross McKitrick, Stephen McIntyre and Chad Herman in press at Atmospheric Science Letter, 
"Reconstruction of regional mean sea level anomalies from tide gauges using neural networks" by Manfred Wenzel and Jens Schröter published in the JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 115, C08013, 15 PP., 2010
doi:10.1029/2009JC005630, we can only agree. It is surprising however that the AAS and ABC have chosen to ignore the results of all these and other publications that challenge the IPCC's position.

The AAS rest their case on four principals:
1. The physical principal of the greenhouse effect  - that shows temperatures will rise with increased concentrations of greenhouse gases. However for CO2 this means a rise of about 1 degree for each doubling of CO2, hardly alarming.
2. The record of the distant past - which includes the surprising finding passed over by the AAS that temperature and CO2 are disconnected. For instance a major glaciation occurred during the Ordovician at a time when CO2 concentrations were about 5-10 times current levels.
3. Measurements of the recent past (the last 100 years)  - which are currently no higher than the well documented medieval warm period about 1000 years ago, and are tainted by Urban Heat Island effects; and
4. Climate models that erroneously assume high climate sensitivity to CO2 increases.

According to Prof Lambeck it took the AAS 8 months to put its pamphlet together. Surely a waste of AAS money given its alarming claims were put to bed by a series of mere cartoons published over a year ago. Firstly, on the science by  "We're not scared anymore Mr Gore" featuring Mrs Pailing, and secondly on the policy response to climate change by "The Prince of Precaution" featuring Big Tim's little monster. Surprisingly ABC have assisted somewhat in their publication. Limited hard copies of both remain available through Little Skeptics Press.

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