Friday, 28 November 2008

Warmists need Christmas gifts too [update 2]

NZ’s Climate Science Coalition has the ideal Christmas gift for you, or a warmist friend:

If you are looking for the ideal gift for the person who is really fretting about Climate Change and how they can change their life to save the planet the Centre has the perfect gifts for you.

First, if they cannot actually read, or have difficulty with anything more challenging than TV news then a single image they can hang on the wall may be the most appropriate.

The Centre has acquired a graph of the satellite temperatures in the mid-troposphere for the years 1978 – to Sept 2008.

The graph (below) also plots CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere over the same period. If it looks remarkably "flat" this is because you may well be looking at the first graph of CO2 concentration which is plotted against a base of zero. Most are plotted against a base of say 250 parts per million which makes it look as though CO2 levels are "going through the roof." Presumably, this is called "unbiased reporting."

The time period is thirty years which by convention is about climate rather than weather. Your exercise for today is look at this graph and compare it to the graphs presented by alarmists and explain the difference. Ponder this good news here, and below.


UPDATE 1:  It is all too readily apparent that many people who attempt to function in the modern world and who purport to comment intelligently on the events of the day are utterly unable to read, undertstand and intelligently interpret a simple graph.   Staggering.

The self-defence of How to Lie with Statistics, particularly an understanding of the 'gee whiz' graph (in common use to show, for example, the "scary" CO2 rise) has never been more urgent.

UPDATE 2Christopher Monckton and Scientist Willie Soon tell an International Symposium on Climate and Weather “Carbon dioxide is not an air pollutant. It is plant food. All life on Earth depends on it. It is natural. It forms the bubbles in bread, champagne, and Coca-Cola. You breathe it out, and plants breathe it in.

    “The Earth contains a lot of CO2, but the atmosphere contains so little that the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) rightly calls CO2 a “trace gas”. A scientific mystery is why the air does not hold more CO2 than it does. Half a billion years ago, there was almost 20 times today’s CO2 concentration.
Most farmers would prefer to grow crops under much-higher concentrations of CO2 than today’s 385 parts per million—less than 1/25 of 1 percent of the atmosphere. To feed the world, low CO2 concentration is not such a great idea. High concentrations are better, and they cause no harm. Experiments have shown that even delicate plants such as orchids thrive at CO2 concentrations of 10,000 ppm.
That is why U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Scalia has declared that if CO2 is to be labeled an “air pollutant”, then so must Frisbees and flatulence.
What about the danger of overheating the Earth by CO2? Al Gore is spending $300 million telling us “global warming” will be a catastrophe. Yet a survey of 539 scientific papers containing the words “global climate change” and published between January 2004 and February 2007 found not a single one that provided any evidence that “global warming” would be catastrophic. It does not matter how many scientists or politicians say that more CO2 will cause a catastrophe. To true scientists, what matters is whether any real-world data support the idea.”


  1. I'm not sure what the point of this is...

    So in summary, C02 up, temperature up?

  2. The CO2 line certainly doesn't look flat to me.

    It's gone up from 330 ppm to 380 ppm - an increase of 15% in just 30 years.

    For comparison, here is a CO2 graph which has a base of 280. Same data points, just less stretched out.

  3. The point is that the CO2 level in the atmosphere was bugger all, presently is bugger all and is going to remain bugger all for the foreseeable future. The point is that alterations of CO2 levels in the atmosphere do not drive the climate.


  4. Bugger all relative to what?

    Really doesn't look like it's going to go down any time soon...

  5. Plotting against a base of, say, 250 parts per million instead of a base of zero, is what is called a "gee whiz" graph.

    It's generally only used if you want to make a small change appear more dramatic, i.e., to lie.

    "The CO2 line certainly doesn't look flat to me." That's probably because you're a moron.

  6. As climate change denial goes you're entering the region of self-parody here, PC.

    I see no difference between your graphs and those in, say, the IPCC reports - except that you're making a selection of scale and data that makes these graphs hard to read. In particular, you've not got any trend lines or moving averages to make the temperature easy to read and you've picked a scale that makes the detail of the C02 change very difficult to see.

  7. "It's generally only used if you want to make a small change appear more dramatic, i.e., to lie."

    PC, you're making clear that you don't read much science.

    It's generally used any time you want the details of the change to be apparent. I rarely see graphs that start at the zero-axis in my line of work because we're trying to fit as much actual data onto the page as possible.

  8. Or, anon (and please post under your real name), it is used when you want to make an impression on someone. You may say that the graph starts at somewhere other than zero, or the scales are distorted. Either way, the goal of many of the alarmists' graphs is to get that alarming first impression on people.

  9. It doesn't look flat because it isn't flat.

    It goes UP from 330 ppm to 380 ppm.

    A 15% increase in just 30 years.

    What is difficult to understand about this?

  10. The globe is warming. Must be time for a cold beer.

  11. StephenR

    Try very hard to understand what 380ppm actually means. See, 1,000,000 is a big number. 380 is a small number. Relative to 1,000,000 it is very, very small. In fact, it is bugger all. Yes indeed, 380 in comparison to 1,000,000 is bugger all.

    Righto then! So when it is reported that the concentraction of atmospheric CO2 is 380ppm, it means there is bugger all CO2 in the atmosphere.

    Fancy that!

    And here is the important bit you evaded, "CO2 levels in the atmosphere do not drive the climate."

    Try thinking about that sometime.


  12. means there is bugger all CO2 in the atmosphere.

    A slightly morbid example, but that would imply that i could put bugger all cyanide in one's coffee, and it wouldn't do anything, because it's not that much?

    "CO2 levels in the atmosphere do not drive the climate."

    I sort of did evade it, because I lack the knowledge and the time to go past 'it must be the sun/cosmic rays/giant conspiracy'.

  13. Yeah...not so flat. Get a spirit level?

  14. A slightly morbid example, but that would imply that i could put bugger all cyanide in one's coffee, and it wouldn't do anything, because it's not that much?"

    True...because its the amount of the dose that determines if something is a poison or not...

    Many substances that are harmful at higer doses are found naturally in our foods and enviroment in such small amounts they are irellavant.

  15. The question of whether CO2 in the atmosphere affects heat retention is a simple question of quantum physics (which wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation are absorbed by CO2), and the answer is, 330 or 380 ppm of CO2 does retain heat in the atmosphere. This isn't something complex or doubtful that reasonable people can choose to be skeptical about. Its science, people, not a matter of opinion.

  16. Also:

    The Centre has acquired a graph of the satellite temperatures in the mid-troposphere

    Astounding, I thought only Al Gore and Elvis had access to such blockbusting information.

  17. Denying global warming is a cheap way for a libertarian to avoid the issue of negative externalities. Rather than accepting the problem and dealing with it by either:

    (A) Saying it doesn't matter if we destroy the planet by excess output of CO2 contributing to global warming.


    (B) Finding a libertarian solution which somehow solves the problem without infringing on people's rights (one might argue that technology will naturally progress in a greener direction).

    The refusal of these objectivists to accept manmade global warming is a sign of the incompetence of their ethical theory. They have no way to "save the planet", and so they pretend the planet doesn't need saving. This gives Libertarianism (and the Libz party) a bad image. I was horrified to find in a Libz policy report a reference to the party being sceptical about global warming. I am a member and I'm not sceptical about it. I just couldn't care less if it's real or not. And I imagine technology will progress in such a manner that it will sort itself out anyway. Libz should drop the sceptical angle and just say "Libz have no climate change policy". It is not an essential part of libertarianism to be "sceptical about global warming". And if it is, then I guess I'm not a libertarian!

  18. Tim, I share your thoughts on this issue.

    (B) Finding a libertarian solution which somehow solves the problem without infringing on people's rights (one might argue that technology will naturally progress in a greener direction).

    Those were exactly my thoughs when I wrote my blog post Climate Change: A Small-Government Perspective.

  19. StephenR

    Your analogy does not hold. Check context. Beware of relying on faulty analogies. Address the topic to hand directly instead.

    Yes. You evaded the point. If, as you admit, you don't know the topic, then you should go find out about it BEFORE posting.


  20. Tim

    Your premise is that a problem exists. Prior to excoriating Libertarianz for their dismissal of what they identify as a non-problem, or a fraud, you need to supply a few simple proofs. You need to demonstrate that your premise is sound. What is required from you is to provide proof that CO2 concentration drives the climate, that Man's activities are the direct cause of the CO2 driven climate change, that the results of this are necessarily bad, that this is an emergency situation which requires some actions to be taken. That'll do for a start. Until you can achieve that, your stated position is baseless.

    BTW, the Libertarianz consistently hold to and promote something called Individual Rights. One of those is known as the Property Right. Do a little research into what this is and what it means PRIOR to blowing off about "externalities". Libertarianz have developed solutions to the class of problem you posited concern about. As you requested, they do not involve the destruction of Individual Rights. Instead they require the consistent application of those Rights.


  21. Yes. You evaded the point. If, as you admit, you don't know the topic, then you should go find out about it BEFORE posting.

    Must admit I had the notion that it was such a simple concept that it was simply common knowledge - a parallel being that most people don't know the roots of what causes gravity to be present, but they assume the theory of what causes it is correct.

    Like Luke H says, seems to be basic science/quantum physics. Turns out the development of the 'greenhouse effect' theory goes back a ways. A real piece of work there.

  22. LGM,

    I know about Coase's theorem. Don't condescend me. The fact is that it is hard to find a way for Coase's theorem to work for an issue like global warming, if it's real.

    And, in fact, I don't need to provide evidence for anything, because I'm not talking about infringing on anyone's rights for it. I could believe that an invisible leprechaun lived in my ear. It's my personal belief that I hold for personal reasons, and it has nothing at all to do with libertarianism or libertarian policy.

    Tim Wikiriwhi is a christian. He believes in what I regard as nonsense. He has no "evidence" for his belief. But it is not Libz policy to be sceptical of Jesus (a much more sound belief).

    The libz policy to global warming should be the same as to christianity- non-existent.

    It is wrong to do it the other way around and say that global warming and christianity are false.

    My point is LGM, that global warming doubting and libertarianism are separate ideas, so Libz should treat them that way.

  23. Tim

    Yes, you do need to provide the evidence. If you can't, then your position can (and should) be discarded without further consideration.

    What this comes down to is you are asserting the existence of a problem and making demands solely on the basis that you've made some assertions. Before you can make those demands you need to demonstrate that the alleged problem is real and existant in the first place. As I've pointed out to you already, if you can't do this then your position is entirely baseless.

    As far as the Property Right is concerned, it is not a triviality. It's derivation and application are not to be underestimated. Prior to demanding someone come up with some new theory or scheme to deal with an alleged problem you should familiarise yourself with what Individual Rights actually are and how the solution to your issue (artifice though it be) already exists in Libertarian ideology.


  24. Heh! This looks awefully like a 21st century theological debate.

  25. LGM,

    It is possible to be a libertarian and to believe in man-made global warming.

    Therefore the Libz party should not make them inseparable.

    This is a valid argument. Try your hand at one.

  26. Tim

    So far all you have provided is unbacked assertion. Your latest posting is more of the same bilge.

    Stated again, your position is baseless. There is no good reason why Libertarianz should alter their policy on the basis of your hand wringing, gormless wittering, wishing and feelings.

    You can believe whatever arbitary nonsense you like BUT the policy set by the Libz has been derived from a hierarchy of thought based upon evidence of reality. You need to look it up and learn about it BEFORE posting ignorant commentary.

    Tim, this isn't about you or what you wish. It's far more important than that.


  27. LukeH

    CO2 increase (assuming the values quoted are correct) amounts to some 1/20,000 of the atmosphere. Bugger all.

    Does that drive a process of global climate change? Can you prove that it does?


  28. LGM,

    It's fairly simple to prove that different, small concentrations of CO2 differ in infrared heat absorption. All one needs is a glass chamber and sensitive measuring equipment.

  29. LukeH

    Does CO2 drive a process of global climate change? Can you prove that it does?


  30. Can you prove that it does?

    No more than I could 'prove' the theory of evolution.

    I can only detail the theory and produce evidence which supports the theory.

    It's called science, LGM.

  31. LukeH

    In other words you can't. You have no proof at all.

    What you do have is a story- a myth. It doesn't fit well with reality. Much of what has been produced as "evidence" is fraudulent or misleading or, at best, highly questionable.

    Now you can desparately cast about for rhetorical devices, analogies and try to substitute all sorts of other topics should you wish. On the other hand were you honest you'd have to stick to the available facts. Those facts do not lead to a proof of a global warming process (man caused) being driven by CO2.


    This CO2 business is presented as a justification for coercive collectivisation of people and their general impoverishment. It is an excuse for massive expansion of government and extraordinary intrusions into people's lives.

    That is a good reason for the Libertarianz to have taken the stance they have.


  32. LGM,

    Libz policy would remain the same (that is, there would be no governmental response to global warming, whether real or imaginary).

    My point is that Libz is committed to protecting the rights of the individual. And I don't see how believing in manmade global warming (or disbelieving in it for that matter) has anything to do with an individual's rights. It would seem to me that an individual should be free to consult the evidence and make their own opinion based on that.

    If Libz is willing to openly express scepticism on this particular issue, why not christianity? Why not something (else) for which there is absolutely NO scientific evidence?

    You said-

    "Prior to demanding someone come up with some new theory or scheme to deal with an alleged problem..."


    "There is no good reason why Libertarianz should alter their policy"

    I really did not demand anything of the sort. I said that Libz should simply have a global warming policy that reads-

    "Libz have no global warming policy"

    rather than the current-

    "Libz have no global warming policy BECAUSE we are sceptical about global warming"

    Do you see the difference?

    The first statement includes people who believe both sides of the story, and the second statement doesn't.

  33. Tim

    Yes, you are indeed demanding the Libz alter their policy. Read what you wrote! It's self contradictory!

    GW is a political issue. Hence the Libertarianz Party has policy regarding it.

    Perhaps you hadn't noticed that the thrust of GW promoters is to restrict Individual Rights by coercive means. GW theory is offered up as the excuse and justification for compulsory collectivism.

    As it happens there is no proof for man made GW. There is no proof that CO2 drives the climate. There is no proof that climate changes are necessarily a bad thing. There is no proof that they do not occur anyway. There is no proof that there is a climate change emergancy. Most importantly, there is no proof that compulsory collectivisation and the suspension of Individual Rights is necessary, GW or not. Until you make ALL those proofs your position remains baseless.

    The Libz are correct to state their position exactly as they have done. As previously stated, they do not need to make an accomodation with your charmless faith.

    This isn't a matter of "inclusion" or trying not to scare the GW horses. It is a matter of principle.



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