Posts

March 30, 2015

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12:45 AM | Totten hots up, ice shelves melting: it’s grim down south
Much news in recent weeks from Antarctica, and none of it good. An Argentinian base on the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula recently reported a new high temperature record for the continent — 17.5ºC. A team of scientists has discovered that East Antarctica’s Totten Glacier — which drains a catchment that contains enough ice to […]

March 29, 2015

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8:29 PM | The man ain’t got no culture
To the British Museum, via the Vets Head, of which more anon. Pen on oil, various hands, circa 2014. Or, if you prefer a more stringent test of your cultural levels, try to identify the provenance of this: The main theme for today’s visit was Defining beauty: the body in ancient Greek art which was…

March 27, 2015

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2:51 PM | Dear Senator Cruz: please leave Galileo out of it
[Yeah yeah, I know. I haven’t blogged in ages. I promise it’s because I’m busy with paying work, not because I hate you all.] One of the hallmarks of crackpottery is to invoke the shade of Galileo. The logic goes like this: “Galileo expressed a radical idea and was punished for it; I have a […]
Editor's Pick

March 25, 2015

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7:46 AM | Leyland and Carter: the rebuttal that isn’t and the hypocrisy that is
Sciblogs editor Peter Griffin recently gave climate denial activists Bryan Leyland and Bob Carter a “right of reply” to my post pointing out the errors and inconsistencies in a Dominion Post op-ed penned by the pair. Griffin took this action because of vociferous complaints from Leyland, who took offence at my discussion of his expertise […]

March 23, 2015

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4:06 PM | What’s going on in the North Atlantic?
The North Atlantic between Newfoundland and Ireland is practically the only region of the world that has defied global warming and even cooled. Last winter there even was the coldest on record – while globally it was the hottest on record. Our recent study (Rahmstorf et al. 2015) attributes this to a weakening of the […]

March 22, 2015

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3:58 PM | Climate Sensitivity Week
Some of you will be aware that there is a workshop on Climate Sensitivity this week at Schloss Ringberg in southern Germany. The topics to be covered include how sensitivity is defined (and whether it is even meaningful (Spoiler, yes it is)), what it means, how it can be constrained, what the different flavours signify […]

March 20, 2015

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1:37 PM | Willard Anthony Watts (born 1958)[1] is an American blogger who runs the climate change denialism website Watts Up With That?
More wiki-fun. Or is this Google Truth in action? (Yeah, I know, the pic isn’t quite right but its good). Which is more accurate? Willard Anthony Watts (born 1958)[1] is an American blogger who runs the climate change denialism website Watts Up With That?.[2] A former meteorologist,[3][4] he is president of IntelliWeather Inc.[5] and directs…

March 18, 2015

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8:36 PM | ESA Policy News March 18: House reviews NSF budget request, FWS bans four constrictor snakes, ESA comments on EPA biomass memo
Here are some highlights from the latest ESA Policy New […]
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8:09 AM | Severe Tropical Cyclone Pam and Climate Change
Guest post by Kerry Emanuel In the past 16 months, two exceptionally intense tropical cyclones, Haiyan and Pam, have struck the western Pacific with devastating effect. Haiyan may have had the highest wind speeds of any tropical cyclone on record, but we will never know for sure because we do a poor job estimating the […]

March 16, 2015

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10:15 PM | Socialism means no toilet paper?
In which I teach Timmy about economics1. What can I lose? Its a guaranteed crowd-pleaser; everyone reading here hates neolibs anyway :-). So: Timmy recommends as “An excellent piece” Art People: Learn Economics, I Beseech You by Franklin Einspruch. And, well, its all more or less the obvious if you’ve been following Timmy or similar,…
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7:51 PM | Engineers and managers answering questions
I was at a meeting today, with a mixed group of engineers and managers, trying to work out when thing X would be complete. So the questions were of the form “is feature Y production quality on branch Z?”. Sometimes the engineers got to answer the question, sometimes management. The engineers response was “yes” or,…

March 13, 2015

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3:37 PM | Currygate and wikipedia
Oh dear, I’ve already had a Currygate. Never mind, the internet has the memory of a goldfish, I’ll get away with it. The story so far: Leaked Email Reveals Who’s Who List of Climate Denialists. No great surprises on the list; I personally wouldn’t call Curry a “denialist” though I would definitely say things she…
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10:22 AM | Zhou et al.; or, the Sun’s apparent orbit is not a icosikaitetragon
RT has a nice post on On the Incident Solar Radiation in CMIP5 Models by Linjiong Zhou, Minghua Zhang, Qing Bao and, Yimin Liu. For the authors, this is a dream paper: you notice something no-one else has, and you get a practically free paper out of it, without having to do any real work…

March 11, 2015

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2:12 PM | We need to act now to protect the world from damaging climate change
It is clear: to restrict global warming to 2 degrees Centigrade we need to leave most of the remaining fossil fuel reserves in the ground. We must stop using oil, coal and gas and, instead, we must use renewable, zero-carbon energy sources. And yet, politicians sit on their hands and do very little to encourage … Continue reading We need to act now to protect the world from damaging climate change →

March 10, 2015

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10:30 AM | A climate scientist becomes a denialist arguing vaccine pseudoscience
The human mind is amazing in its ability to compartmentalize. Many are the times when I’ve come across people who seem reasonable in every other way but who cling tightly to one form of pseudoscience or another. On the other hand, as I’ve noticed time and time again, people whose minds have a proclivity for…

March 09, 2015

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11:10 PM | DomPost denier debacle: science has the last word
The Dominion Post, which blotted its editorial copybook last week by publishing a factually incorrect and highly misleading opinion piece by climate denialists, has today published a heavyweight reply by three of NZ’s top climate scientists — David Wratt, Andy Reisinger and Jim Renwick1. Headed “Human role in climate change is clear”, the article is […]

March 07, 2015

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6:56 PM | Tee hee again
Even more amusing – but oddly, rather related – to the last tee hee is the news that the denialosphere is panicking over Google Truth (h/t NS and, apparently, almost everyone else). I’m not sure why they are bothering – its only a research project. Amusing panics are available from JoNova or AW (via Sou).…
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3:03 PM | How radiation from space affects the Earth’s climate
Cosmic rays are a form of radiation from space consisting of particles such as protons and atomic nuclei that are very high in energy. These particles have the ability to electrically-charge (ionise) water molecules in the Earth’s atmosphere. These water ions can act as the starting points (nucleation points) of clouds in the lower atmosphere,…

Tsonis, A., Deyle, E., May, R., Sugihara, G., Swanson, K., Verbeten, J. & Wang, G. (2015). Dynamical evidence for causality between galactic cosmic rays and interannual variation in global temperature, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201420291. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1420291112

Citation
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3:03 PM | How radiation from space affects the Earth’s climate
Cosmic rays are a form of radiation from space consisting of particles such as protons and atomic nuclei that are very high in energy. These particles have the ability to electrically-charge (ionise) water molecules in the Earth’s atmosphere. These water ions can act as the starting points (nucleation points) of clouds in the lower atmosphere,…

Tsonis, A., Deyle, E., May, R., Sugihara, G., Swanson, K., Verbeten, J. & Wang, G. (2015). Dynamical evidence for causality between galactic cosmic rays and interannual variation in global temperature, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201420291. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1420291112

Citation
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3:03 PM | How radiation from space affects the Earth’s climate
Cosmic rays are a form of radiation from space consisting of particles such as protons and atomic nuclei that are very high in energy. These particles have the ability to electrically-charge (ionise) water molecules in the Earth’s atmosphere. These water ions can act as the starting points (nucleation points) of clouds in the lower atmosphere,…

Tsonis, A., Deyle, E., May, R., Sugihara, G., Swanson, K., Verbeten, J. & Wang, G. (2015). Dynamical evidence for causality between galactic cosmic rays and interannual variation in global temperature, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201420291. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1420291112

Citation
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12:27 AM | Unforced variations: March 2015
This month’s open thread. We’ve burned out on mitigation topics (again), so please focus on climate science issues this month…

March 06, 2015

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7:15 PM | Climate contrarian’s fossil fuel funding ignites disclosure debate
Scientists speak out against subsequent inquiry.

March 05, 2015

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11:12 AM | 25 ways the DomPost failed its readers by publishing Leyland and Carter’s climate crap
The Dominion Post, the newspaper of record for New Zealand’s capital city, today gave great prominence to an opinion piece by high profile climate denialists Bob Carter and Bryan Leyland titled Hypothetical global warming: scepticism needed1. It’s a “Gish Gallop” of untruths, half-truths and misrepresentations — a piece so riddled with deliberate errors and gross […]

March 04, 2015

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8:08 PM | Will we see shorter, more focused IPCC reports from now on? The short answer is no
…says carbonbrief. In turn, I think that’s based on IPCC PRESS RELEASE / 27 February 2015 / IPCC takes decisions on future work. The very second bullet point of that is: Request the Secretariat and Technical Support Units to command a respectful workplace, emphasizing policies and practices that promote diversity, fairness, collaboration and inclusiveness. Mmmm……

March 03, 2015

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9:40 PM | Stoat-tastic!
ZOMG: I can’t see anything ever beating that. Source: Indy.

March 01, 2015

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10:56 PM | Antarctic ice going fast: Larsen C ice shelf primed for giant calving event
The Larsen C ice shelf on the east coast of the Antarctic peninsula is primed for a giant iceberg calving event, and could be heading for total collapse — similar to the fate of the Larsen B ice shelf in 2002, according to scientists monitoring the ice. A huge crack (above: hover over the picture […]

February 28, 2015

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10:16 PM | Lents: Caius and Christ’s
Alas, I missed Caius retaking the Men’s headship on Thursday, mostly because I didn’t think it would happen (they were nowhere on Wednesday) but partly because I was bag-carrying for King’s, who rewarded me with an exciting bump on (LoL)Catz and ensuing chaos; and on Christ’s on Friday. But I did see Christ’s take the…
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