Climate Feedback Fact Checks CO2 Coalition

By Andy May

The Climate Feedback website critiques my CO2Coalition article “Attributing global warming to humans.” Their factcheck is here. Like most “fact checks” these days it is a thinly disguised opinion piece. The statement that they claim is incorrect is:

“There is no evidence, other than models, that human CO2 emissions drive climate change and abundant evidence that the Sun, coupled with natural climate cycles, drives most, if not all, of recent climate changes, as described in Connolly, et al., 2021.” [emphasis added]

They cleverly leave out the last phrase: “as described in Connolly, et al., 2021,” and then immediately assert “Solar irradiance has had a negligible impact on Earth’s climate since the industrial era.” This is followed by no evidence other than an appeal to the mythical “consensus.”

Later in the article, they say Connolly, et al. uses simple linear regression to establish a link between solar irradiance and surface temperature. Connolly, et al. does not state that the Sun controls the climate or that humans do, it simply shows that, using available evidence, solar variability (actually TSI, or Total Solar Irradiance variability) could account for anywhere from 0 to 100% of the warming since the Little Ice Age (the so-called “pre-industrial” era). One of the main points of Connolly, et al. is that the IPCC and the so-called “consensus” are ignoring two critical areas of current research. First, they ignore the uncertainty in our estimate of surface warming since the Little Ice Age, and second, they ignore the considerable uncertainty in solar-variability-long-term trends, both recently and since the Little Ice Age. As they state in the paper, the amount of 20th century warming that can be simulated as due to solar variability, depends upon the surface temperature dataset and the solar TSI model used. There are many versions of both. Suffice it to say, while the exact influence of human activities and solar variability on climate change are both unknown, no one can claim solar influence is negligible. The correct answer is we don’t know.

In the Climate Feedback fact check, their Figure 1 shows the TSI reconstruction preferred by the IPCC, the empirical PMOD reconstruction. The PMOD reconstruction was created by Judith Lean and the late Claus Fröhlich by adjusting the data to match their solar model, it was not from the best satellite data, like the more accurate ACRIM model, which shows a long-term change in solar irradiance that may explain some of the 20th century surface warming.

Read the rest at the CO2Coalition website here.

Published by Andy May

Petrophysicist, details available on linkedin.com https://www.linkedin.com/in/andymaythewoodlands

6 thoughts on “Climate Feedback Fact Checks CO2 Coalition

  1. You should be proud that fact chokers consider your work important enough to criticize. I’m no fact choker, but that statement they criticized is completely WRONG, and should not be included in any climate science writing. If that is the claim made by the study mentioned, and “recent” refers to the past 50 years, the study is a FRAUD.

    Two errors:
    (1) “Climate models say” is WRONG
    The statement means “computer programmers say”. Because climate computer games “say” whatever they are programmed to say. They do not produce data. And their 40+ years of wrong predictions are not science, just computer game climate astrology.

    (2) The claim that “abundant evidence that the Sun, coupled with natural climate cycles, drives most, if not all, of recent climate changes, as described in Connolly, et al., 2021.” is WRONG.
    The evidence is not “abundant” — trustworthy evidence that the sun drives “most” of recent climate change DOES NOT EXIST, assuming recent means the past 50 years.

    That sentence is as wrong as a sentence could be in a climate science article, and the fact chokers were right, for a change. That sentence does not deserve publicity, even if attributed to someone else.

    There is no evidence of the 11 year sunspot cycle in UAH satellite era measurements of the global average temperature in the troposphere. In fact, there is no evidence of any significant solar influence on the global average temperature since the cold 1690s during the Maunder Minimum period.

    And that 1690s influence is assuming sunspot counts are a good proxy for solar energy, and were accurate. Also assuming CET real time temperatures are reasonably accurate. And assuming climate proxies are able to detect temperature changes when they are more than +/- 1 degree C. While there are good anecdotes for colder periods in the past, climate reconstructions are local, and are not particularly accurate. We know the climate always varies, but changes of +/- 1 degrees C. may be undetectable by climate proxies.

    In summary, there are many causes of climate change that we know of. Natural causes controlled the climate for about 4.5 billion years. In the pst 47 years there has been fast enough global warming to assume rising CO2 levels had some effect, amount unknown.

    Unfortunately, people with science degrees are reluctant to say “no one knows exactly what caused the warming in the past 47 years (or the lack of warming from 1940 to 1975”. Although I have a BS degree, I must have missed class the day when students were taught “we don’t know” is the correct answer for many scientific questions. And saying “we don’t know” does not make you look dumb.

    In climate science, the IPCC teaches the lesson on how to look dumb: They arbitrarily declared that all natural causes of climate change were unimportant “noise” in 1995. Then they blamed almost all global warming on humans, since they left no other choice! Simple circular reasoning junk science for simple humans. Start with a conclusion, and ignore all contrary evidence. Predict global warming doom since 1988. Say it’s worse than we thought in the previous report. Issue hysterical press releases. That’s the IPCC.
    Richard Greene
    Bingham Farms. Michigan

    1. Richard, Too much to answer in a comment. I am working on a series of posts that will document how the Sun affects our climate though, so you will get your answer on that.

      “There is no evidence, other than models, that human CO2 emissions drive climate change and abundant evidence that the Sun, coupled with natural climate cycles, drives most, if not all, of recent climate changes, as described in Connolly, et al., 2021.”

      The statement above is correct, as written. As for the evidence that the Sun is important, I refer you to the following articles, there is a ton of evidence, too much to list here. Remember evidence does not equal proof, there is a lot of evidence, but no proof. I will grant you that.

      Connolly et al., R. (2021). How much has the Sun influenced Northern Hemisphere temperature trends? Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics, 21(6). Retrieved from https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1674-4527/21/6/131?fbclid=IwAR0U5WARVnuGVjj2qeiiBYgGo0lIxXb9NNzUbeqqN-th2Zp1YU8rLOZkrMM

      Soon, W., & Baliunas, S. (2003). Proxy climatic and environmental changes of the past 1000 years. Climate Research, 89-110. Retrieved from https://www.int-res.com/abstracts/cr/v23/n2/p89-110/
      Soon, W., Baliunas, S., Idso, C., Idso, S., & Legates, D. (2003b). Reconstructing Climatic and Environmental Changes of the Past 1000 years: A Reappraisal. Energy and Environment, 14(2&3). Retrieved from https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1260/095830503765184619

      Soon, W., Connolly, R., & Connolly, M. (2015). Re-evaluating the role of solar variability on Northern Hemisphere temperature trends since the 19th century. Earth Science Reviews, 150, 409-452. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0012825215300349

  2. I believe the Connolly statement is completely wrong. But I welcome any attempt to defend it. Science is never settled. I offer three brief arguments for why the sun has NOT been an important climate change variable in the past 50 years. In my opinion, it would require a miracle for anyone to refute all three statements. And I don’t believe in miracles. Even on Easter Sunday.
    (1)
    Based on sunspot counts, as a proxy of solar geomagnetic activity, changes in the Sun’s overall brightness since 1850 have been minimal. There was actually a declining sunspot count trend since about 1960. That down trend suggests slightly LESS solar energy … even as the global average temperature INCREASED from 1960 through 2020.
    (2)
    If the Sun’s energy output increased, all layers of Earth’s atmosphere would have warmed. But satellites and weather balloons show warming in the troposphere, and cooling in the stratosphere. That is evidence of greenhouse gas warming, but NOT evidence of increased solar energy.
    (3)
    During a strong 11 years solar cycle, the Sun’s total average brightness varies by up to 1 Watt per square meter, which might affect the global average temperature by no more than +0.1 degrees C., within the margin of error of the temperature measurements.

    Richard Greene
    Bingham Farms, Michigan

    1. 1. During the Maunder Minimum, sunspots dropped to near zero, with more than 10 years between observed sunspots at times. During the modern solar maximum the NH winter sunspot average hit 108 sunspots. Winter is when high or low solar activity has the most effect on our climate, since more radiation is emitted at the North Pole during the winter than anywhere else on Earth. More on this at a later date.
      2. This a theory held by many, but it isn’t true. See my posts on the “Atmospheric Fingerprint” and on “SAR.” The atmospheric fingerprint idea is interesting but doesn’t prove anything about the human impact on climate. Too many other factors can cause stratospheric cooling, plue the stratospheric cooling has stopped, how did that happen? Emissions haven’t stopped.
      3. Another myth. Solar variability is more than TSI or “brightness.” See this post:
      https://andymaypetrophysicist.com/2018/05/03/climate-change-due-to-solar-variability-or-greenhouse-gases-part-b/?msclkid=2196defdbf0c11eca774c70971aa363a

      In short, my statement is correct. I cannot prove that insolation variability drives climate change, but there is a considerable amount of evidence it does. On the flip side, there is no evidence that human activities drive climate change, just a lot of climate models that have been falsified by McKitrick and Christy’s two papers, 2018 and 2020.

  3. The first thing to note when having such discussions is who pays the salary and what is the true motivation of those concerned: to support their preconception or to actually learn! My motivation is actually to learn and to change where necessary, Lets be proud to change if the evidence demands, not reluctant. This is more intellectually rewarding than to scratch around for evidence which supports ones preconception and paint yourself into a corner. Once you learn the trick of learning you become liberated.
    Before writing a course on Renewable Energy and having been an oil industry consultant for 30+ years I was largely agnostic as to causes of climate change saying it was just too complicated to know with any certainty. However, having found and carefully understood radiative forcing, which is not easy by the way (and I have a PhD in petrophysics) I feel reasonably certain now that post WW2 CO2 is indeed causal.
    Enjoy Petrophysics (while you can), Dr Mark

    1. I gave up petrophysics to devote myself to writing. You can believe CO2 causes climate change, but that doesn’t mean anything, unless you have observational evidence it is so. Unvalidated models are not evidence. Remember, McKitrick and Christy have invalidated the CMIP5 and 6 models in two key papers. 2018 and 2020.

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