With an excellent discussion underway, unfortunately - but not surprisingly - Anthony Watts abruptly closed comments on his latest article attacking Principia Scientific International (PSI). From his readers’ feedback it is clear Mr. Watts went off half cocked with his mischaracterization that PSI had “misinterpreted” a revealing NASA press release about CO2, solar flares, and the thermosphere.
Mr Watts is probably aware that he has no valid response to many of the points made by PSI members in various papers and articles. PSI doesn't shut down debate so, for those interested in debating the issue, all are very welcome to come do so on our own forum thread here.
Beyond doubt, as Douglas Cotton pointed out in his prompt rebuttal article to the WUWT piece, Mr. Watts has missed the elephant in the room. Cotton writes, “So, clearly the atmosphere acts as an umbrella during sunlit hours, and yet Anthony Watts and many climatologists like to play down this cooling effect, if they even mention it.”
Working overtime to hide that elephant with its umbrella is climatologist, Dr.Roy Spencer. Not only did a world-leading expert in thermodynamics, Dr. Pierre R Latour, point out Spencer’s errors with his ‘No, Virginia’ rebuttal to Spencer’s ‘Yes, Virginia’ blog post we’ve seen many other highly-respected scientists disagreeing with Dr. Spencer.
A look at a thermodynamics physics text from UC Berkley proves, using standard physics, that cold does not heat up warm even in the presence of “backradiation.” Problem #1023 shows that a radiation shield does not cause a source to become hotter if its radiation is trapped, and Problem #1026 shows that a sphere surrounded by a shell simply warms up the shell until the shell emits the same energy as the sphere, without requiring the sphere to become hotter and with the presence of backradiation. What Spencer, Watts, Willis, et al mistakenly believe, is that in order for something warm to heat up something cool, the warmer thing has to heat up itself! As absurd a proposition as an ice cream licking itself.
In this article on his “WattsUpWithThat” (WUWT) website, Anthony Watts alleges that Principia Scientific International (PSI) whom he “truly dislikes giving any attention to” has done some “really bad mangling” and “completely misread the NASA study.” Sadly, for Mr. Watts his readership don't agree with him. Comments on WUWT are currently running two to one in favour of PSI.
He points out patronisingly (as if we hadn't noticed) that the NASA article was only talking about the thermosphere. Yet what does the PSI article repeatedly refer to? “Earth's upper atmosphere” and “the thermosphere.”
And what does PSI deduce? “Greenhouse gases actually block up to 95 percent of harmful solar rays.” Clearly we are only talking about the very harmful high intensity rays, such as those in a “burst of solar activity” early in March which NASA said delivered “26 billion kilowatt hours of energy from the Sun.” Obviously members of PSI know that the total percentage of Solar radiation absorbed by the atmosphere and clouds is somewhere between 19% (as shown in the NASA diagram below) and the 33% calculated for moist cloudy regions in this paper in the Journal of Geophysical Research.
Furthermore, when carbon dioxide absorbs such incident radiation, much of it is in the 2.7 micron band, for which each photon carries nearly four times the energy of typical 10 micron photons emitted from Earth's surface. Notice also that the NASA diagram shows only 15% being absorbed by the atmosphere from upwelling radiation, so more is absorbed from incident radiation. That alone would appear to imply a net cooling effect for radiating molecules.
We couldn’t pin down global warming, exactly, so now it’s re-labelled as climate change, which is an incredibly vague loaded term that no-one fully understands. The difficulty of pinning down this “wicked problem” has produced more uncertainty than ever and rendered the subject the purview of politics that has polarized the public and turned the issue into something reminiscent of the dark ages and conjuring up of weather-focused demons.
Amid these dark ages, the voice of former TV meteorologist and meteorological instrumentation specialist Anthony Watts has become unusually controversial. The knee-jerk reaction of a polarized public has been to place him in one of two climate change camps, and to categorize him as a “denier”. But Watts insists his latent climate change scepticism is pragmatic and based on his experience as a meteorologist and a long process of connecting the scientific dots. His message, he says, is misunderstood, and he best describes himself as “lukewarm” on the issue. He believes that climate change is happening, but that there’s no need for panic.
Anthony is also the publisher of the most visited website on climate science in the world, www.wattsupwiththat.com
Skeptics are rightly proud of the success of popular science blog, WUWT as an antidote to government misinformation and bias about man-made global warming. However, an irrational censorship over greenhouse gas science by site owner Anthony Watts may be about to damage the credibility of this supposed champion of higher standards in climate science.
For almost two years Mr. Watts has stubbornly opposed all requests to host a debate on his blog about new science discrediting the greenhouse gas effect (GHE), the very cornerstone of alarmist claims that humans are dangerously warming the atmosphere. I personally, have been banned by an irate Watts from even contacting him.
Now astrophysicist, Joseph E. Postma, author of the latest groundbreaking paper ‘Absence of a Measurable Greenhouse Gas Effect‘ has become the latest victim of irrational censorship at the hands of the closed-minded Watts. As Postma lamented yesterday, “Right in the middle of a perfectly good conversation, with good science being discussed Watts shut down the discussion.” Here is the evidence of the censor’s pen of Watts at work:
“Mr. Postma and everybody else involved in this idiotic discussion over “magic gas”
Maurizio Morabito has obtained the details of the BBC climate 28. It had been published by the International Broadcasting Trust.
Greenpeace, Tearfund, Television for the Environment (one of the companies involved in the BBC free programming scandal), Stop Climate Chaos, Npower Renewables, E3G, and dear old Mike Hulme from UEA. Just the group you’d want guiding climate change coverage. Read the whole thing.
[For those who don't know what this is about, read the back story here.]
Figure 5. Temperature reconstructions created using the 650-tree (‘alltrw’ data) TRW chronology (a) and the 130 tree (‘S88G1112’ data) MXD chronology (b). Chronologies were created using two RCS curves and were regressed against the Bottenviken mean May–August monthly temperature over the period 1860 to 2006. The shaded areas show two standard errors (see SI15, available online, for details) plotted either side of the mean where standard errors were scaled to fit the temperature reconstruction.
The TRW and MXD temperature reconstructions of (a) and (b) are compared in (c) after they were normalised over the common period 600 to 2008 and smoothed with a 10 year spline. The lower two panels compare the reconstructions using the TRW chronology (d) and MXD chronology (e) with the mean of May to August monthly temperature from Bottenviken over the period 1860 to 2006.
An article by David Rose appears today in the Mail on Sunday under the title: ‘Global warming stopped 16 years ago, reveals Met Office report quietly released… and here is the chart to prove it’
It is the second article Mr Rose has written which contains some misleading information, after he wrote an article earlier this year on the same theme – you see our response to that one here.
To address some of the points in the article published today:
Firstly, the Met Office has not issued a report on this issue. We can only assume the article is referring to the completion of work to update the HadCRUT4 global temperature dataset compiled by ourselves and the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit.
We announced that this work was going on in March and it was finished this week. You can see the HadCRUT4 website here.
Spencer Michels interviews one of the nations's most read climate skeptics Anthony Watts. Watts believes much of the data used to support global warming theories is faulty. The big problem, as Watts sees it, is that the stations were temperatures are gathered are too close to urban developments where heat is soaked up and distorts the readings. So it looks like the earth is warming though it may not be.
Hot summers are invoked as support for climate alarmism; cold winters are dismissed as weather - Image - John S. Dykes
I argued last week that the way to combat confirmation bias—the tendency to behave like a defense attorney rather than a judge when assessing a theory in science—is to avoid monopoly. So long as there are competing scientific centers, some will prick the bubbles of theory reinforcement in which other scientists live.
For constructive critics, this is the problem with modern climate science. They don't think it's a conspiracy theory, but a monopoly that clings to one hypothesis (that carbon dioxide will cause dangerous global warming) and brooks less and less dissent. Again and again, climate skeptics are told they should respect the consensus, an admonition wholly against the tradition of science.