I live in Texas and write about climate science and energy, so I get a lot of questions about the recent problems. My wife and I are OK, we have a natural gas powered generator and did not lose power like most people did earlier this week. We also had a broken pipe, but it was outside the house, and I was eventually able to cap it, with the help of a neighbor, after the normal (for me) three trips to the hardware store and two failed attempts.
As usual these days, discussions of natural events quickly devolve into useless political arguments about who or what is to blame. Little thought is put into the technical or scientific issues, instead everything is viewed through the prism of Democrat or Republican political agendas. Ideology trumps common sense. Thus, we have Democrats blaming natural gas shortages and coal downtime and Republicans blaming the wind power collapse. What really happened?
Bill Gates just published a new book, How to Avoid a Climate Disaster. He begins his book with the assertion that “To stop the warming and avoid the worst effects of climate change—and these effects will be very bad—humans need to stop adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.” He continues that every country will need to change its ways and every activity in the modern lifestyle involves releasing greenhouse houses, so every person must change. He then warns us that if we keep on living the way we do, the impact of all of this will be catastrophic.
The new IPCC report, abbreviated “AR6,” is due to come out between April 2021 (the Physical Science Basis) and June of 2022 (the Synthesis Report). I’ve purchased some very strong hip waders to prepare for the events. For those who don’t already know, sturdy hip waders are required when wading into sewage. I’ve also taken a quick look at the CMIP6 model output that has been posted to the KNMI Climate Explorer to date. I thought I’d share some of what I found.
In my last post, on Scafetta’s new millennial temperature reconstruction, I included the following sentence that caused a lot of controversy and discussion in the comments:
“The model shown uses a computed anthropogenic input based on the CMIP5 models, but while they use an assumed climate sensitivity to CO2 (ECS) of ~3°C, Scafetta uses 1.5°C/2xCO2 to accommodate his estimate of natural forcings.”
Nicola Scafetta has written a new paper (Scafetta, 2021) in Atmosphere on a new millennial surface temperature reconstruction. This is his latest “what if the models are accurate?” analysis. Scafetta’s idea is, let’s assume a model is correct, what are the implications?
Previously, he examined the PMOD solar model, by assuming it was correct and the Sun is invariant long-term, does this make sense? Another example, if we smooth through the urban heat island effect (UHI), do we eliminate it, or just smear it out, so the data looks better, but is just as inaccurate? In the latter post, on UHI, I wrote:
“Relative to 1940 to 1960, the original HadCRUT curve shows 0.59°C of warming and 0.48°C using Scafetta’s corrections. The UAH record shows 0.44°C. The CMIP5 climate models show 0.78°C of warming.
It is possible, according to Scafetta’s correction, that non-climatic biases may have contributed a fifth of the reported HadCRUT global warming since 1940-1960. It is also possible that the CMIP5 climate models may overestimate warming by a third. These are significant problems.”
Computer models have a downside. They can be used by those on the other side of the debate. If they lead to absurd or inconsistent conclusions, they make you look foolish. What if Scafetta assumed that the HadCRUT recent temperature record is correct? Then he further assumes that the CMIP5 (Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5) ensemble mean is correct, what does this mean for past temperatures? Do we find inconsistencies?
On January 22, 2021, John Christy presented a new online talk to the Irish Climate Science Forum. The talk was arranged by Jim O’Brien. A summary of the presentation can be read at clintel.org here. In this post we present two interesting graphs from the presentation. These compare observations to the IPCC Coupled Model Intercomparison project 5 climate models (CMIP5, 2013) and CMIP6 (current set of IPCC models) climate model projections.
The next graph compares the newer CMIP6 models to both the weather balloon data (light green) and the weather reanalysis data (dark green).
The difference between the models and the observations is statistically significant and shows that the models have been invalidated. It is also significant that the CMIP6 spread of model results is worse than the CMIP5 spread. Thus, the newer models show less agreement to one another than the previous set.
Clintel.org has just issued a nice press release about the idea of preparing to adapt to climate changes, rather than the more controversial idea of destroying the fossil fuel industry in the hope that reducing CO2 emissions will somehow make the climate better.
So far we have been unable to measure the influence of additional CO2 on the climate, although some think the impact is somewhere between 1.5 degrees and 4.5 degrees per doubling of the CO2 concentration. We cannot even be sure of that, because there are credible estimates that are less than one degree.
So, it seems reasonable to spend our hard-earned money adapting to whatever happens. Adaptation works if the changes are natural or man-made. The article is by Guus Berkhour and Marcel Crok of The Netherlands, where they understand adaptation better than most countries. Their dikes have a flooding probability of 1 time in 10,000 years.
Nicola Scafetta has just published a new paper in Climate Dynamics examining evidence of the urban heat island (UHI) effect (Scafetta, 2021). The paper is not paywalled and can be downloaded here. In summary, Scafetta shows that part of the recent warming shown in the HadCRUT 4 global temperature record may be due to the UHI effect. He uses an analysis of diurnal maximum (Tmax) and minimum (Tmin) temperatures, climate model output, and a comparison of sea surface temperatures (SST) to land temperatures to estimate the possible influence on the HadCRUT 4 record.
Patrice Poyet has just published a new 431-page eBook entitled, The Rational Climate e-Book, it is free to download here. Dr. Poyet studied geochemistry, remote sensing, and computer science at Ecole des Mines de Paris / Nice University. He received his doctorate in 1986. As an expert computer modeler, he spends much of the book evaluating climate computer models and uncovers their often-unstated underlying assumptions.