Friday, November 27, 2009

Drudge Hides The Science

In attempt to fan the dying flames of the ClimateGate pseudo-controversy, Matt Drudge himself stepped in last night to provide a few helpful links. Note the fourth one down: Except that the "Climate Science Coalition" is not a government organization, and the site in question is Tim Lambert's Deltoid (one of the best known climate science blogs). Drudge has simply been fooled by the coalition's official sounding name. As Tim puts it:

Update: A special message to visitors from Drudge: you are being lied to. Global warming is happening and we're causing it, but to avoid dealing with the problem folks are shooting the messenger, attacking the scientists who discovered and reported on the problem. The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition isn't made up of climate scientists, but is just a group of global warming skeptics who gave themselves a fancy title. And they just got caught combining temperature data from different places to get rid of the inconvenient warming trend in New Zealand. If you want to know what the science really says, please read the Copenhagen Diagnosis.

Drudge has inadvertently linked to a discussion of real science! But that won't do! So a few hours and several 10,000s of spittle flecked T-baggers redirected to Deltoid later:

Bye Bye!


Mr. Lorne said...

"Global warming is happening and we're causing it..."

actual proof please. Not just rhetoric, but ACTUAL proof that we're causing it.

"The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition isn't made up of climate scientists,"

Neither is Al Gore, or even David Suzuki for that matter. Suzuki is a geneticist. Dr. Tim Ball is a Canadian climatologist and he's not buying into it. Who would you believe?

Sorry, not convinced. This whole gloabl warming, I mean "climate change" conspiracy has more holes than swiss cheese.


CanuckRover said...

Dr. Tim Ball is a Canadian climatologist and he's not buying into it. Who would you believe?

No, he isn't. He's retired and doesn't actually do research. So I'll believe, you know, the actual practising climatologists.

Ti-Guy said...

actual proof please.

First day on the Internet?

Ti-Guy said...

Hey Squeaky Leaks, aren't you the least concerned about the fraud committed by The Climate Science Coalition and Drudge's sending the whole thing down the memory hole?

That's the topic here. Stay on it, or go back to downloading the online porn, as is the habit of religious conservatives/closet-cases such as yourself.

sharonapple88 said...

Who would you believe?

Belief and reality are two different things. Sometimes they coincide, sometimes they don't. Not all belief is rational (notes on how denialists tend to argue an issue).

As for the "conspiracy"...

It's not as though what's being done with regards to climate change is new. What I'm referring to is an industry creating skepticism when their products are shown to create harm. There is the asbestos and tobacco.

The oil industry is actively behind promoting climate change denialists, like Dr. Tim Ball.

This makes sense. You'd expect an industry to defend their product. The question is what do you think they more loyal towards -- the bottom line or the truth?

And going back on topic... sad but not surprising. What's sad is that some of these people present themselves as the watchdogs of science... but if they can't even understand a blog post....

Anyway, Tim Lambert's response to Drudge's deletion and the response of some of Drudge's readers is quite funny.

Mr. Lorne said...

Ti-Guy, I am so glad you responded. I must copy and paste your latest to my collection. You have proved invaluable for demonstrating a typical liberal mindset. People are thinking twice about liberal support when they see your posts.

Thanks again!

Mr. Lorne said...


You make some good points.

Would I would actually like to see is this entire debate become unpoliticized but I doubt that will happen. If there is true science behind the entire global warming scenario, then all data must be released for a full peer review. That includes all data, good, bad or ugly and get this thing sorted out.

If it's a conspiracy, let's put an end to it...if it's real then everyone needs to get on board. But that can't happen when both groups of scientists are working behind locked and encrypted servers.


Holly Stick said...

LeekySweek, you wouldn't know what to do with the raw data if you had it. The point is that the climate scientists have satisified their peers that the science is robust.

Mr. Lorne said...

"LeekySweek, you wouldn't know what to do with the raw data if you had it."

Holly Stick,

Would you know what to do with it? Are you a climatologist? I am not and I freely admit that. But I do want to see a non-political, rational resolution to the global warming issue and that is not going to happen until all facts are on the table. Just not select facts from both camps, but all the facts.


Unknown said...

"But that can't happen when both groups of scientists are working behind locked and encrypted servers."

Who are the "two groups" of scientists you're talking about?

Mr. Lorne said...

I am talking about global warming advocates and global warming deniers. There are scientists in both camps and they need to figure out this issue.

crf said...

Ha ha, Leeky Sweek. The proof the warmers are right is written on the back of Barack Osama's birf cirtifikit.

I am I right? Am I right? You can't say I'm wrong!

Now go find out, and don't come back until you do!

Ti-Guy said...

People are thinking twice about liberal support when they see your posts.

Sure they are, Mary.

Mr. Lorne said...

crf, yep, you're part of the problem alright.

John Mashey said...

Leeky Sweek:
1) So do you not believe it's warming?
2) Or that it's not being caused by humans?

For 1), you might want to understand why Alberta now has pine bark beetles thriving where they never did, on their way from BC through Alberta, heading for the boreal forests further North. They've already eaten COlorado, etc in the US.

All you really need to know is that the Greenhouse effects is real, if misnomered. More {CO2, N2O, CH4, etc} warms the Earth, (a)with more of the effect being to make low temperatures {night, winter} less low than to make highs higher, and to cause more warming poleward.

This is what gets you pine beetles, mosquitos that survive longer, and kudzu headed towards Lower Ontario, although I think Alberta is safe from that.

For 2), the simplest answer is that carbon isotope ratios differ between fossil fuels and other things. See RC.

Of course, if there's a place in the world where people have strong motivations to totally ignore the science, it's Alberta, with much of Russia perhaps close behind.

Compare BC and AB for warming:

+ More grapes in Okanagan.
+ Lower heating costs.
-- Beetles devour trees (already)
- Warmth won't help skiing, especially at Whistler, then in Monashees. Rockies probably OK. On the other hand, poorer people elsewhere means less trips for skiing.
= Probably more rain, not nice, but OK, better than what's going to happen to US SouthWest.

BC bottom line: mostly negative, hence BC worries about AGW.

+ Lower heating costs
- Beetles devour trees,but not too big a deal, since much smaller lumber business
- S AB may get more mosquitoes,West Nile, etc [I'm not so sure about that one]
+ Warmer & more rain probably good for S. Alberta agriculture
+ Skiing (AB has less resorts, and the key ones are further North, so as skiing gets pressured in BC, more people may go to Banff, etc). This is the same reason some California residents ski in BC - it's more reliable.
= No seacoast, so irrelevant.

AB Bottom line:
Thus for AB, most of AGW's effects are positive, but all of that is almost certainly outweighed by the economic effects. It is totally to AB's advantage to supply as much tar-sands-derived oil as it can, even though that is one of the most CO2-intensive ways of getting it. AB has plenty of water, so that's not the problem it is for the USA's shale oil.

Hence, ONLY if someone in AB cares about what happens in coastal provinces areas of Canada, are they likely to accept climate science. Canada has a relatively low fraction of people living on seacoasts near sea-level, and zero of them are in AB. BC has Vancouver and Victoria, but the East Coast cities are relatively small, and Montreal is high enough not be bothered for a century or two.

1) It is 100% clear that it is warming.

2)It is 100% clear that the warming of at least the last 50 years or so is primarily from human-produced GHGs.

3) But, it is not at all obvious that most AB residents would care. Really, there is too much money to be made over the next 50 years or so. Hence, I'd guess that AGW will not become "real" in AB any time soon, no matter what the science says.

Holly Stick said...

John, I doubt some of your predictions for Alberta. Southern Alberta at least is more drought prone; and rain in BC is likely to produce chinook in southern Alberta. We may have lots of water, but that lots of water is in the northern part of the province, which is probably why they consider building nuclear plants there. For many decades Alberta governments have considered diverting rivers to the south, though they have not actually tried it... yet. The water in southern Alberta is mostly in use now.

Holly Stick said...

Leeky, I'm not a climatologist; i took a few biology courses but flunked chemistry and avoided physics completely.

But I've lived in or near Calgary for over 50 years. I remember in the 1960s the spring snow melt took days or weeks; but now there is rarely enough snow for a spring melt.

sharonapple88 said...

Speaking of snow....

The ice may not be recovering in the arctic.

Ti-Guy said...

Squeaking out another leak, in other words.

Mr. Lorne said...

Thanks, John. I admit I am skeptical because of the cloak and dagger nature of this entire issue. My biggest desire would be to get the debate completely out in the open and have some resolution. J

ust curious, if all the global warming is true is there anything we can actually do in Canada? It doesn't sound like we're the major contributor to this problem.

Holly, I am also from Alberta and it seems like we had more snow this spring than before. It felt like we went some winter straight into summer this year without much of a spring.


Holly Stick said...

Yeah, there was a little more snow this spring.
This is the current state of the science, prepared for the Copenhagen meeting:

We are growing as a contributor, largely because of the oilsands.

Some ideas on what to do:

Mr. Lorne said...

Thanks, Holly. I'll give them a look.


John Mashey said...

Holly & Leeky:
I've posted some more comments, but they seem to have gotten lost. I try again.

Holly, sorry, I wasn't as precise as I might have been. I think BC and N AB have plenty of water, I don't think most of S AB has an excess. :-) As for precipitation changes, I was thinking of "Hadley Cell Expansion" (Google that an you'll get a variety of explanations), but:

a) If Earth is warmer, there is higher evaporation in warm areas, and generally more precipitation *somewhere* for long-term balance, but the geographic distribution can change.

b) Climate scientists think (via decades of data,augmented by models) that some places (like the US SouthWest and the Mediterranean) will get *less* rainfall and faster evaporation, a bad combination for places already water stressed.

c) So, the precipitation goes poleward. A lot of models agree the US SOuthWest gets drier. There is less agreement about where "drier" turns into "about the same" and then into "wetter". Of course, there are East-West differences, i.e., I'd guess BC will stay wetter than AB. However, S AB on most models seems to be "same or maybe a little wetter", which I assume would be welcomed. I doubt that a little more water would be noticed much in BC :-)

(Both): Snow.
One has to be careful interpreting the relationship of snow and temperature.
If it is really cold, there is less moisture in the air, and little snow. As it warms up, but is still cold enough for snow, you get *more* snow, up to the point where it is too warm to snow. In much of California, it never snows, but the Sierras are right at the edge. The warming trend turns what used to be snow into rain, which is Bad News. This probably affects Whistler, BC as well, which can have truly wonderful snow, or not so good. As one goes East, the snow at big White (Kelowna) is more reliable, as is the snow in the Rockies. I would guess that a few degrees higher temperature ought to mean more snow for the BC and AB ski resorts, and for AB in general, as it should still easily be cold enough to snow.

Leeky: Canada matters. See:
Energy Consumption per Capita, for example. You can sort by decreasing usage. It is of course impossible for a huge, spread-out countries like {CA, US, AU} to be as efficient as the denser European ones. Likewise, the climate extremes in CA don't help, although it is worth comparing with places like Finland or Sweden. CA is fortunate in having vast energy resources of various kinds.

Here's 2007 table of energy use per US State, unfortunately in Millions. However, if you take a Gigaoule (middle column of the per-country data), an know that a GJ is roughly 1M BTUs (.95M actually), then the numbers in that per-state chart can be compare to the per-country numbers. I.e., that showed the US average for 2003 being 337 M BTU, and the country chart shows 2003 as 327 G. You can see the US States vary from 207 MBTU (RI) to 1062 (AK), a factor of 5:1. Some of that is density & climate, but you will also find pairs of otherwise similar states, but with huge differences in energy usage, for no reason I can tell except local laws. California's low usage is partly from mild climate, but much more from fanatic attention toe energy efficiency.

I'm sure somebody has the Provincial equivalents, but I didn't know offhand where they were.

Of course, for the longer-term, even without the climate-change issues, the world is either already at Peak Oil, or it's coming soon. That has huge implications for those living in places dependent on cheap oil, especially if they care about their descendants. For example, current large-scale North American agriculture may well have to change a bit.

John Mashey said...

I recommend maribo on how the CA provinces differ in emissions targets.