Re: Fwd: a modest proposal [was: Re: [asa] Phil Jones Stepping Down..]

From: Rich Blinne <>
Date: Fri Dec 11 2009 - 16:34:22 EST

On Fri, Dec 11, 2009 at 2:02 PM, William Hamilton <> wrote:

> On Fri, Dec 11, 2009 at 12:16 PM, Randy Isaac <>wrote:
>> I would be delighted if Glenn joined the discussion on this list. I have
>> high regard for him and like his focus on the data. As you point out, I
>> referred to the discussion on this list and not to Glenn. I had two aspects
>> in mind regarding failure to deal with the data. One was the predominance of
>> subjective statements of character assassination or denigration, or even
>> simply undocumented cynicism of data, rather than data-based arguments. The
>> other was that many on this list expressed doubts about the validity of the
>> surface temperatures and the validity of models. But when we turned to data
>> entirely separate from those areas, namely, historical correlation of CO2
>> and temperature, there was no response to that data, just a restatement of
>> "I don't believe it" or words to that effect.
> To the above I could reiterate the economist's caveat: Correlation oes not
> necessarily imply causation. In any case my understanding is that the CO2
> concentration lags the temperature, so why don't we say that increasing
> temperature has resulted in release of CO2 from the oceans?

Climate change is all about forcings and feedbacks. In natural warming the
first 15% is attributed to orbital variation which results in CO2 release
which accelerates the warmth. So it's not entirely true that CO2 lags
warming. For anthropogenic warming CO2 is the forcing rather than a feedback
(although CH4 another GHG acts as a positive feedback as the permafrost
melts). In previous warmings warming happens and ice melting happens at a
much faster rate than cooling and freezing since ice melt is a "wet" process
with the stored heat in the ocean melting the ice from below. In previous
warming episodes sea level rise happened as fast as 1m every 20 years with
forcings smaller than what we have now. The current computer models used for
the 2007 IPCC report do not take the ocean effect into account and the 1m /
century rise is just an extrapolation of the 20th Century rise. It doesn't
take into account the accelerated nature of ice melt in previous warmings
and is most likely an underestimate.

As to attribution of CO2 release it's simple accouting.

To visualize this check this video:

Rich Blinne
Member ASA

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Received on Fri Dec 11 16:34:44 2009

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