Wobbles in the Barriers: Arctic Oscillation (4)

By: Dr. Ricky Rood , 4:22 PM GMT on October 14, 2013

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Wobbles in the Barriers: Arctic Oscillation (4)

This is a continuation of my series on the Arctic Oscillation / North Atlantic Oscillation. Links to background material and previous entries are at the end.

In the last entry I suggested that if you were on a bridge overlooking a swiftly flowing creek then you would notice that twigs floating in the water did not move across the current. They are carried downstream along the edge of the current. The purpose of that comparison was to demonstrate how fast-moving, concentrated flows have the effect of isolating one side of the creek from the other. This is true in the creek, and it is also true about jet streams in the atmosphere.

One way to understand the Arctic Oscillation is to think of it as the variation of an atmospheric jet stream. For the Arctic Oscillation the jet stream of interest is the southern edge of vortex of air that circulates around the North Pole (see previous entry). Air inside the vortex often has characteristics different from air outside it. Intuitively for the Arctic, there is colder air on the side toward the pole. If you look at trace gases, like ozone, they are different across the edge of the vortex. The takeaway idea is that the edge of the vortex is a barrier. It’s not a perfect barrier, but the air on one side is largely separated from the air on the other side. In this blog, I describe the difference between a strong and a weak vortex – which is the same as the difference between the positive and negative phases of the Arctic Oscillation and the North Atlantic Oscillation.



Figure 1: This figure is from the point of view of someone looking down from above at the North Pole (NP). Compare this perspective to Figure 1 in previous blog. This represents a strong, circular vortex centered over the pole, which encloses cold air, represented as blue. The line surrounding the cold air is the jet stream or the edge of the vortex.

Figure 1 shows an idealized schematic of the North Pole as viewed from above. This is the strong vortex case, when there is exceptionally low pressure at the pole. Low pressure is associated with counterclockwise rotation in the Northern Hemisphere. This direction of rotation is called cyclonic. This strong vortex case is the positive phase of the Arctic Oscillation. During this phase, the vortex aligns strongly with the rotation of the Earth, and there are relatively few wobbles of the edge of the vortex – the jet stream. I drew on the figure two points, X and Y. In this case, the point X is hot and the point Y is cold. It is during this phase when it is relatively warm and moist over, for example, the eastern seaboard of the United States.

Figure 2 compares a strong vortex and a weak vortex. In both cases, the circulation around a central point is counterclockwise or cyclonic. However, in the weak vortex case, the vortex does not align as strongly with the rotation of the Earth and there are places where the edge of vortex extends southwards. The vortex appears displaced from the pole; it is not centered over the pole.



Figure 2: Examples of a strong, circular vortex and a weak, more wavy vortex. See text for a more complete description.

Whether the vortex is stronger or weaker is determined by the atmospheric pressure at the pole. In the winter, an important factor that determines the circulation is the cooling that occurs at polar latitudes during the polar night.

What determines the waviness or wobbles at the edge of this vortex? The structure at the edge of vortex is strongly influenced by several factors. These factors include the structure of the high-pressure centers that are over the oceans and continents to the south of jet stream. One could easily imagine a strong high-pressure center over, for example, Iceland, pushing northward at the edge of the vortex. This might push a lobe of air characteristic of the middle latitude Atlantic Ocean northward. Since the edge of the vortex is something of a barrier, this high-pressure system would distort the edge of the vortex and, perhaps, push the vortex off the pole. This would appear as a displacement of the vortex and its cold air over, for example, Russia. If the high grew and faded, then this would appear as wobbles of the vortex.

Other factors that influence the waviness at the edge of the vortex are the mountain ranges and the thermal contrast between the continents and the oceans. The impact of mountains is easy to understand. Returning to the creek comparison used above, the mountains are like a boulder in the stream. The water bulges around and over the boulder; the air in the atmosphere bulges around and over the mountain ranges. The Rocky Mountains in the western half of North America are perfect examples of where there are often wobbles in the atmospheric jet stream.



Figure 3: This figure is from the point of view of someone looking down from above at the North Pole (NP). This represents a weak, wavy, wobbly vortex displaced from the pole. The vortex encloses cold air, represented as blue. The line surrounding the cold air is the jet stream or the edge of the vortex. (definition of vortex)

Figure 3 shows an idealized schematic of the North Pole as viewed from above. This is the weak vortex case, when the low pressure at the pole is not as low as average and the pressure is much higher than the strong vortex case of Figure 1. This weak vortex case is the negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation. During this phase, the alignment of the vortex with the rotation of the Earth is less prominent, and there are wobbles of the edge of the vortex – the jet stream. In this case, the point X is cold and the point Y is hot. It is during this phase where it is relatively cool and dry (but potentially snowy) over, for example, the eastern part of the United States.

These figures help to explain the prominent signal of the Arctic Oscillation discussed in the earlier entries (specifically, this blog). That is, when the vortex is weak and wobbly, then there are excursions of colder air to the south and warmer air to the north. This appears as waviness and is an important pattern of variability - warm, cold, warm, cold.

The impact of the changes in the structure of edge of the vortex does not end with these persistent periods of regional warm and cold spells. The edge of the vortex or the jet stream is also important for steering storms. Minimally, therefore, these changes in the edge of the vortex are expected to change the characteristics of how storms move. Simply, if the edge of the vortex has large northward and southward extensions, then storms take a longer time to move, for example, across the United States from the Pacific to the Atlantic Oceans. In the positive phase of the Arctic Oscillation they just whip across. In the negative phase, the storms wander around a bit. A more complete discussion of this aspect of the role of the Arctic Oscillation will be in the next entry. (Note use of dramatic tension and the cliffhanger strategy of the serial.)

r

Previous entries:

Barriers in the Atmosphere
Behavior
Definitions and Some Background

August Arctic Oscillation presentation

CPC Climate Glossary “The Arctic Oscillation is a pattern in which atmospheric pressure at polar and middle latitudes fluctuates between negative and positive phases.”

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Quoting 1256. yoboi:



DR Spencer worked for NOAA & NASA......


And Snowden worked for the NSA. What's your point?
Member Since: January 11, 2012 Posts: 6 Comments: 850
1256. yoboi
Quoting 1255. Daisyworld:



I'm sorry if you were offended, but I'm not the one being rude. You're the one who is perpetuating the false notion that there's a scientific debate about whether or not global warming is caused by humans burning fossil fuels. That debate is long over, and it's been proven that humans are responsible for the rise in CO2 over the past 150 years, doubling the amount that caused the end of the last ice age.

I'm also sorry if you took umbrage because I'm not totally convinced that you took PHYS 142 (like you said it is just my opinion), but I said that because I know the course developer for that class, and I'm aware of what material is taught in the course. The course explains many times the difference between fossil fuels and biomass-based fuels, and that would have answered your original question (something about donkey carts being part of the transportation system?). As it stands, you apparently do not understand that concept, so either you did not absorb the information during that portion of the course, or you simply did not take the course. I chose the latter opinion because I did not think it proper nor polite to call into question your study habits.

Keep in mind that forming an opinion-based conclusion about a scientific topic without having sufficient background to evaluate that topic is within everyones' personal liberties. However, perpetuating that opinion by passing it off as fact is intellectually dishonest. A simple "it is my opinion that..." as a precondition to stating your conclusion would have softened any criticism here. However, walking into a forum and acting as if you know more than the experts on the subject is rude, and fosters the perception of arrogance. Congruent to that, walking into a forum and stating that you are here to voice "both sides" of a factually one-sided topic will be perceived as trolling, and you will likely be treated as such.



DR Spencer worked for NOAA & NASA......
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2325
Quoting 1204. GTstormChaserCaleb:
That's your business whether you believe I took the class or not as I know what I took, so don't tell me I didn't take this class. Besides like I said I took the class 5 years ago. Next thing you know you're probably going to call me a liar. And you repeated what I said in comment post 1199 about the burning of fossil fuels being the main contributor to CO2, so if you're done being rude, we can continue on with this conversation. Thanks and have a nice day.



I'm sorry if you were offended, but I'm not the one being rude. You're the one who is perpetuating the false notion that there's a scientific debate about whether or not global warming is caused by humans burning fossil fuels. That debate is long over, and it's been proven that humans are responsible for the rise in CO2 over the past 150 years, doubling the amount since the end of the last ice age.

I'm also sorry if you took umbrage because I'm not totally convinced that you took PHYS 142 (like you said it is just my opinion), but I said that because I know the course developer for that class, and I'm aware of what material is taught in the course. The course explains many times the difference between fossil fuels and biomass-based fuels, and that would have answered your original question (something about donkey carts being part of the transportation system?). As it stands, you apparently do not understand that concept, so either you did not absorb the information during that portion of the course, or you simply did not take the course. I chose the latter opinion because I did not think it proper nor polite to call into question your study habits.

Keep in mind that forming an opinion-based conclusion about a scientific topic without having sufficient background to evaluate that topic is within everyones' personal liberties. However, perpetuating that opinion by passing it off as fact is intellectually dishonest. A simple "it is my opinion that..." as a precondition to stating your conclusion would have softened any criticism here. However, walking into a forum and acting as if you know more than the experts on the subject is rude, and fosters the perception of arrogance. Congruent to that, walking into a forum and stating that you are here to voice "both sides" of a factually one-sided topic will be perceived as trolling, and you will likely be treated as such.
Member Since: January 11, 2012 Posts: 6 Comments: 850
Apparently, the folks at HockeySchtick are just as dumb as the folks at WTFUWT.

Wotts Up With That Blog takes a look at a recent Hockeyschstick post here:


One other thing I was going to comment on was a recent post on The Hockey Schtick. The post is called a new paper demonstrates climates models don’t even have ‘basic physics’ of the greenhouse effect right. It refers to a paper by Russell et al. (2013) called Fast Atmosphere–ocean Model Runs with Large Changes in CO2. The paper’s abstract ends with

With CO2 at or below 1/8 of the 1950 value, runaway sea ice does occur as the planet cascades to a snowball Earth climate with fully ice covered oceans and global mean surface temperatures near –30oC.


The Hockey Schtick post comments that

However, -30oC is much colder than the -18oC calculated for an Earth with no atmosphere or oceans or greenhouse effect at all! Further, -30oC is much, much colder [i.e. 35oC colder] than the +5°C global mean temperature calculated using the IPCC formula for CO2 forcing using a CO2 level of 39 ppm.


To be honest, I was slightly confused about this myself until I realised: it’s a snowball earth so, presumably, the albedo would higher than it is today. It’s fairly straightforward to estimate the non-greenhouse temperature of a planet. The basic equations are

Most of the terms are fairly self-explanatory (if you’re uncertain about these equations and terms, feel free to ask and I’ll explain further), but A is the albedo, and a is the distance of the planet from the Sun. Currently A is about 0.3. If you solve for Tpl in the above equation usong A = 0.3, you do indeed get Tpl = 255 K = -18oC. However, if the Earth has fully ice-covered oceans A would be considerably greater than 0.3. Using A = 0.5 gives Tpl = 235 K = -37oC. So, it’s not that surprising that the models with CO2 concentrations of 39 ppm had surface temperatures of about -30oC. One of the reasons I was wanting to write about this is that one of the paper’s authors, Chris Colose, posted a comment at the Hockey Schtick to point out that

You didn’t read our paper. The albedo in a Snowball is much higher than present-day, so temps can go go well below the modern effective temperature of 255 K. This is an elementary point.


So, does the author of the Hockey Schtick post quickly respond with what might be regarded as the obvious response : “Of course, how silly of me. I should have realised that. Thank you for commenting”? To find out, you could either read the HS comments, or you could simply take an educated guess. In this case, if you were to select what might – to many – be the obvious answer, you’d most likely be correct.
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3129
Quoting 1242. yoboi:


we are almost in 2014.....so approx 6 yr old data...Would you approve of showing a 2008 hurricane data today and issue hurricane warnings from it????

Here ya go. TSI plotted against GISS. I included the linear trend line for both to make it pretty clear that it isn't the Sun causing the current warming.

Member Since: October 30, 2005 Posts: 7 Comments: 5469
Musings on Quantitative Palaeoecology


"Doug Keenan has written a long essay on the “Statistical Analyses of Surface Temperatures in the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report” that Anthony Watts has seen fit to link to from WUWT.

The essay claims to evaluate the IPCC claim that the temperature increase in the instrumental record is statistically significant. The reader is advised that “No background in statistics is required.”, which is sort of true as there are no statistical analyses in the essay and no equations, but mainly false, because the reader cannot evaluate the veracity of Keenan’s claims, and is instead forced to rely on his authority. The essay is however stuffed will irrelevant digressions, for example into radiocarbon dating (which I will look at later), and irrelevant details of Parliamentary questions asked by a Lord.

Keenan’s basic claim is that the model the IPCC use to test if the temperature trend is significant is not appropriate. The IPCC use a linear model that allows the residuals to be autocorrelated. Keenan argues that a driftless ARIMA (3,1,0) model is more appropriate and a better fit to the data. This is exactly the same argument that I showed to be specious earlier this year. Keenan ignores this post and the follow-up posts."...




..."Keenan is savaging a straw man. Nobody believes that a linear trend is a full description of climate change over the instrumental period. Climate forcings do not increase linearly with time, so it would be absurd to expect global temperature to. The linear trend model is simply a quick test of whether temperature is increasing. Replacing an oversimplified but informative model with a physically meaningless model is not progress."


My bold
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3129
Quoting 1231. GTstormChaserCaleb:
Still seems to be uncertainties in the models response to solar activity and aerosols. Also note there is mentions of cooling effects from aerosols, volcanic eruptions, and solar radiation. The CO2 levels is what is being held responsible for raising Global Temperatures, but can just as easily be offset from a volcanic eruption like the one we saw in 1992 with Mt. Pinotubo or even worst another eruption like the one from Krakatoa in 1883 that cooled the Earth's temperature by about 2 degrees fahrenheit for 5 years before things returned back to normal. Remember that the gases released by volcanoes contain SO2 when released into the atmosphere blocks out incoming solar radiation and as a result cools the planet.

There may still be those uncertainties, but do not forget, it's not just the climate models that are used for climate science. There are numerous studies that have estimated the climate sensitivity, and some of them are from global climate models.

Yes, unpredictable things like a massive volcanic eruption or meteor impact could mix things up. But they are unpredictable. In the case of volcanic activity, after a few years, the shortwave-energy-blocking particles settle out, and the earth's energy balance goes back to what it would have been without the eruption. We'd get a few year reprieve from temperature increases, but then they would rapidly rise back to where they would have warmed.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3159
Our planet needs triage.....
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Quoting 1244. ncstorm:
trick or treat--Carry on with your censorship and have some fun tonight with friends and family..Happy Halloween!

Can you say passive-aggresive?

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting 1231. GTstormChaserCaleb:
9.4.1.4 The Influence of Greenhouse Gas and Total Anthropogenic Forcing on Global Surface Temperature

Interesting..."Fingerprint studies that use climate change signals estimated from an array of climate models indicate that detection of an anthropogenic contribution to the observed warming is a result that is robust to a wide range of model uncertainty, forcing uncertainties and analysis techniques (Hegerl et al., 2001; Gillett et al., 2002c; Tett et al., 2002; Zwiers and Zhang, 2003; IDAG, 2005; Stone and Allen, 2005b; Stone et al., 2007a,b; Stott et al., 2006b,c; Zhang et al., 2006). These studies account for the possibility that the agreement between simulated and observed global mean temperature changes could be fortuitous as a result of, for example, balancing too great (or too small) a model sensitivity with a too large (or too small) negative aerosol forcing (Schwartz, 2004; Hansen et al., 2005) or a too small (or too large) warming due to solar changes. Multi-signal detection and attribution analyses do not rely on such agreement because they seek to explain the observed temperature changes in terms of the responses to individual forcings, using model-derived patterns of response and a noise-reducing metric (Appendix 9.A) but determining their amplitudes from observations. As discussed in Section 9.2.2.1, these approaches make use of differences in the temporal and spatial responses to forcings to separate their effect in observations."

"Since the TAR, there has also been an increased emphasis on quantifying the greenhouse gas contribution to observed warming, and distinguishing this contribution from other factors, both anthropogenic, such as the cooling effects of aerosols, and natural, such as from volcanic eruptions and changes in solar radiation."

Link

Still seems to be uncertainties in the models response to solar activity and aerosols. Also note there is mentions of cooling effects from aerosols, volcanic eruptions, and solar radiation. The CO2 levels is what is being held responsible for raising Global Temperatures, but can just as easily be offset from a volcanic eruption like the one we saw in 1992 with Mt. Pinotubo or even worst another eruption like the one from Krakatoa in 1883 that cooled the Earth's temperature by about 2 degrees fahrenheit for 5 years before things returned back to normal. Remember that the gases released by volcanoes contain SO2 when released into the atmosphere blocks out incoming solar radiation and as a result cools the planet.
I think if you'll link to the 2013 report--IPCC V--you'll find much more of interest than you will for the 2007 report to which you linked. IN the six intervening years since, the IPCC has become even more certain that climate change is man-made...
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13443
Quoting 1242. yoboi:


we are almost in 2014.....so approx 6 yr old data...Would you approve of showing a 2008 hurricane data today and issue hurricane warnings from it????


I'll rephrase the question...

So do you think the energy output from the sun has changed very much since 2008?
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Quoting 1245. Xulonn:
Good to see you here arguing, Caleb - at least you are engaging in a conversation. I'm a person interested in the psychology of AGW/CC denial, and I have a feeling that you are still struggling with acceptance of the negative scenarios that I expect will affect your generation in a really bad way.

I'm almost 72 y/o, I've lived a good, long life, and probably have a quite a few years left. If the end is nigh for me, it's no big deal - time to move on. However, I actually expect to see the serious effects of AGW/CC begin to manifest - but as an old man.

You are young, and your generation and your children are the ones who would truly suffer. I will support changes and mitigation, but without societies and governments making the changes, no effective responses can be made. And yet that government-mandated change is the foundation of much of the fear and denialism in many people - fueled (pun intended) by the fossil fuel industry who bribe the government and spend untold millions of dollars to manipulate you with propaganda.

And yet you worry that that very government will impinge on your lifestyle, and imperil your so-called freedom, all while your generation is enslaved by consumerism. The FF industry will push your generation over the cliff in the name of monstrous greed and extraordinary profits, killing the very goose that laid their golden egg.

Take a really hard look at the science - it is absolutely overwhelming in support of AGW/CC. You and your generation are absolutely screwed not only if you do nothing, but probably screwed even if you simply delay the mitigation efforts a bit longer.

I watch with sad eyes - and feel that there is very little I can do to get you and many like to see the facts - perhaps until it is too late.

Yes, I'm an alarmist - with a solid foundation of science supporting my alarm.
Thanks for your understanding. I come here to learn and improve my blogging skills because I feel one day I will have to create a weather blog of my own giving my synopsis of the weather should I go on to become a broadcast meteorologist. I try to take in all the information I can, but I know I need to work on my analytical skills, and that is one of the most important skills in science.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1245. Xulonn
Quoting 1236. GTstormChaserCaleb:
Nice relevant article, cyclonebuster. I really like the sampling being done on sediment cores. It not only give us an idea of the current conditions going on in the oceans, but it also gives us insights into what those oceans were like in the past.
Good to see you here arguing, Caleb - at least you are engaging in a conversation. I'm a person interested in the psychology of AGW/CC denial, and I have a feeling that you are still struggling with acceptance of the negative scenarios that I expect will affect your generation in a really bad way.

I'm almost 72 y/o, I've lived a good, long life, and probably have a quite a few years left. If the end is nigh for me, it's no big deal - time to move on. However, I actually expect to see the serious effects of AGW/CC begin to manifest - but as an old man.

You are young, and your generation and your children are the ones who would truly suffer. I will support changes and mitigation, but without societies and governments making the changes, no effective responses can be made. And yet that government-mandated change is the foundation of much of the fear and denialism in many people - fueled (pun intended) by the fossil fuel industry who bribe the government and spend untold millions of dollars to manipulate you with propaganda.

And yet you worry that that very government will impinge on your lifestyle, and imperil your so-called freedom, all while your generation is enslaved by consumerism. The FF industry will push your generation over the cliff in the name of monstrous greed and extraordinary profits, killing the very goose that laid their golden egg.

Take a really hard look at the science - it is absolutely overwhelming in support of AGW/CC. You and your generation are absolutely screwed not only if you do nothing, but probably screwed even if you simply delay the mitigation efforts a bit longer.

I watch with sad eyes - and feel that there is very little I can do to get you and many like to see the facts - perhaps until it is too late.

Yes, I'm an alarmist - with a solid foundation of science supporting my alarm.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1244. ncstorm
trick or treat--Carry on with your censorship and have some fun tonight with friends and family..Happy Halloween!

Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 14259
Quoting 1165. Birthmark:

Yeah, ain't that something? Imagine! The Arctic gets cold in winter?

And look! Just one more standard deviation and the ice will have "recovered" to the disastrous long-term trend!



Some of you folks... LOL



I don't know how anyone can comment on increasing volume since the PIOMAS website says:

Arctic Sea Ice Volume Anomaly

September Update Delayed: Required data not available due to US Government shutdown.


as of 1 minute ago.(My bold)

Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3129
1242. yoboi
Quoting 1241. cyclonebuster:


So do think the energy from the sun has very much since 2008?


we are almost in 2014.....so approx 6 yr old data...Would you approve of showing a 2008 hurricane data today and issue hurricane warnings from it????
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2325
Quoting 1234. yoboi:


Pat do you have a chart past 2008????


So do think the energy from the sun has very much since 2008?
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Quoting 1236. GTstormChaserCaleb:
Nice relevant article, cyclonebuster. I really like the sampling being done on sediment cores. It not only give us an idea of the current conditions going on in the oceans, but it also gives us insights into what those oceans were like in the past.


That is correct!
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Quoting 1235. Patrap:
800,000 Year Record of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Concentrations

Over the last 800,000 years, natural factors have caused the atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration to vary within a range of about 170 to 300 parts per million (ppm). The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has increased by roughly 35 percent since the start of the industrial revolution. Globally, over the past several decades, about 80 percent of human-induced CO2 emissions came from the burning of fossil fuels, while about 20 percent resulted from deforestation and associated agricultural practices. In the absence of strong control measures, emissions projected for this century would result in the CO2 concentration increasing to a level that is roughly 2 to 3 times the highest level occurring over the glacial-interglacial era that spans the last 800,000 or more years.


Carbon dioxide concentration (parts per million) for the last 800,000 years, measured from trapped bubbles of air in an Antarctic ice core. The 2008 observed value is from the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii and projections are based upon future emission scenarios. More information on the data can be found in the .Climate Change Impacts on the U.S. report



That is correct!
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Quoting 1233. Patrap:
Climate Model Indications and the Observed Climate

Global climate models clearly show the effect of human-induced changes on global temperatures. The blue band shows how global temperatures would have changed due to natural forces only (without human influence). The pink band shows model projections of the effects of human and natural forces combined. The black line shows actual observed global average temperatures. The close match between the black line and the pink band indicates that observed warming over the last half-century cannot be explained by natural factors alone, and is instead caused primarily by human factors.


Simulated global temperature in experiments that include human influences (pink line), and model experiments that included only natural factors (blue line). The black line is observed temperature change.


That is correct!
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Quoting 1232. Patrap:
Energy from the Sun Has Not Increased

The amount of solar energy received at the top of our atmosphere has followed its natural 11-year cycle of small ups and downs, but with no net increase. Over the same period, global temperature has risen markedly. This indicates that it is extremely unlikely that solar influence has been a significant driver of global temperature change over several decades.


Global surface temperature (top, blue) and the Sun's energy received at the top of Earth's atmosphere (red, bottom). Solar energy has been measured by satellites since 1978.


That is correct!
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Nice relevant article, cyclonebuster. I really like the sampling being done on sediment cores. It not only give us an idea of the current conditions going on in the oceans, but it also gives us insights into what those oceans were like in the past.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1235. Patrap
800,000 Year Record of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Concentrations

Over the last 800,000 years, natural factors have caused the atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration to vary within a range of about 170 to 300 parts per million (ppm). The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has increased by roughly 35 percent since the start of the industrial revolution. Globally, over the past several decades, about 80 percent of human-induced CO2 emissions came from the burning of fossil fuels, while about 20 percent resulted from deforestation and associated agricultural practices. In the absence of strong control measures, emissions projected for this century would result in the CO2 concentration increasing to a level that is roughly 2 to 3 times the highest level occurring over the glacial-interglacial era that spans the last 800,000 or more years.


Carbon dioxide concentration (parts per million) for the last 800,000 years, measured from trapped bubbles of air in an Antarctic ice core. The 2008 observed value is from the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii and projections are based upon future emission scenarios. More information on the data can be found in the .Climate Change Impacts on the U.S. report
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127378
1234. yoboi
Quoting 1232. Patrap:
Energy from the Sun Has Not Increased

The amount of solar energy received at the top of our atmosphere has followed its natural 11-year cycle of small ups and downs, but with no net increase. Over the same period, global temperature has risen markedly. This indicates that it is extremely unlikely that solar influence has been a significant driver of global temperature change over several decades.


Global surface temperature (top, blue) and the Sun's energy received at the top of Earth's atmosphere (red, bottom). Solar energy has been measured by satellites since 1978.


Pat do you have a chart past 2008????
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2325
1233. Patrap
Climate Model Indications and the Observed Climate

Global climate models clearly show the effect of human-induced changes on global temperatures. The blue band shows how global temperatures would have changed due to natural forces only (without human influence). The pink band shows model projections of the effects of human and natural forces combined. The black line shows actual observed global average temperatures. The close match between the black line and the pink band indicates that observed warming over the last half-century cannot be explained by natural factors alone, and is instead caused primarily by human factors.


Simulated global temperature in experiments that include human influences (pink line), and model experiments that included only natural factors (blue line). The black line is observed temperature change.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127378
1232. Patrap
Energy from the Sun Has Not Increased

The amount of solar energy received at the top of our atmosphere has followed its natural 11-year cycle of small ups and downs, but with no net increase. Over the same period, global temperature has risen markedly. This indicates that it is extremely unlikely that solar influence has been a significant driver of global temperature change over several decades.


Global surface temperature (top, blue) and the Sun's energy received at the top of Earth's atmosphere (red, bottom). Solar energy has been measured by satellites since 1978.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127378
9.4.1.4 The Influence of Greenhouse Gas and Total Anthropogenic Forcing on Global Surface Temperature

Interesting..."Fingerprint studies that use climate change signals estimated from an array of climate models indicate that detection of an anthropogenic contribution to the observed warming is a result that is robust to a wide range of model uncertainty, forcing uncertainties and analysis techniques (Hegerl et al., 2001; Gillett et al., 2002c; Tett et al., 2002; Zwiers and Zhang, 2003; IDAG, 2005; Stone and Allen, 2005b; Stone et al., 2007a,b; Stott et al., 2006b,c; Zhang et al., 2006). These studies account for the possibility that the agreement between simulated and observed global mean temperature changes could be fortuitous as a result of, for example, balancing too great (or too small) a model sensitivity with a too large (or too small) negative aerosol forcing (Schwartz, 2004; Hansen et al., 2005) or a too small (or too large) warming due to solar changes. Multi-signal detection and attribution analyses do not rely on such agreement because they seek to explain the observed temperature changes in terms of the responses to individual forcings, using model-derived patterns of response and a noise-reducing metric (Appendix 9.A) but determining their amplitudes from observations. As discussed in Section 9.2.2.1, these approaches make use of differences in the temporal and spatial responses to forcings to separate their effect in observations."

"Since the TAR, there has also been an increased emphasis on quantifying the greenhouse gas contribution to observed warming, and distinguishing this contribution from other factors, both anthropogenic, such as the cooling effects of aerosols, and natural, such as from volcanic eruptions and changes in solar radiation."

Link

Still seems to be uncertainties in the models response to solar activity and aerosols. Also note there is mentions of cooling effects from aerosols, volcanic eruptions, and solar radiation. The CO2 levels is what is being held responsible for raising Global Temperatures, but can just as easily be offset from a volcanic eruption like the one we saw in 1992 with Mt. Pinotubo or even worst another eruption like the one from Krakatoa in 1883 that cooled the Earth's temperature by about 2 degrees fahrenheit for 5 years before things returned back to normal. Remember that the gases released by volcanoes contain SO2 when released into the atmosphere blocks out incoming solar radiation and as a result cools the planet.
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Hot from Dr. Manns Facebook... No pun intended..


Pacific Ocean Warming at Fastest Rate in 10,000 Years


Just how rapid is the current rate of warming of the ocean? There is an interesting new article by Rosenthal and collaborators in the latest issue of the journal Science entitled "Pacific Ocean Heat Content During the Past 10,000 Years" that attempts to address this question. The article compares current rates of ocean warming with long-term paleoclimatic evidence from ocean sediments. So how rapid is the ocean warming? Well, for the Pacific ocean at least, faster than any other time in at least the past 10,000 years.

The study finds, specifically, that (to quote Columbia University's press release) the "middle depths [of the Pacific Ocean] have warmed 15 times faster in the last 60 years than they did during apparent natural warming cycles in the previous 10,000".

Beyond that key overall take-home conclusion, though, there are some enigmatic aspects of the study. The authors argue for substantial differences between proxy reconstructions of surface temperature and their new sediment core evidence of intermediate water temperatures from the tropical IndoPacific, during the past two millenia. The researchers argue that recent warmth is anomalous in the former case, but not the latter. They argue that, while the present rate of ocean warming is unprecedented, the actual level of ocean heat content (which depends not just on surface temperature, but also sub-surface ocean temperatures) is not as high as during Medieval times, i.e. during what they term the "Medieval Warm Period" (this is a somewhat outdated term; The term "Medieval Climate Anomaly" is generally favored by climate scientists because of the regionally variable pattern of surface temperatures changes in past centuries--more on this later).

One complication with their comparison is that the dramatic warming of the past half century is not evident in the various sediment data analyzed in the study. "Modern" conditions are typically defined sediment by the "tops" of the sediment core obtained by drilling down below the ocean bottom. But sediment core tops are notoriously bad estimates of "current" climate conditions because of various factors, including the limited temporal resolution owing to slow sediment deposition rates, and processes that mix and smear information at the top of the core. Core tops for these reasons tend not to record the most recent climate changes. Thus, the researchers' data do not explicitly resolve the large recent increases in temperature (and heat content). But if the warming of the past half century is not resolved by their data, then the assumption that those data can be registered against a common modern baseline (the authors use a reference period of 1965-1970) too is suspect. That registration is critical to their conclusion that modern heat content has not exceeded the bounds of the past two millennia.

There are also some puzzling inconsistencies between the authors' current conclusions and other previously published evidence implying a very different pattern of global ocean heat content changes over the past two millennia. Current global sea level has been shown to be unprecedented for at least the past two millennia in previous work using both proxy-based sea level reconstructions and predictions from "semi-empirical" models of sea level change. Thermal expansion due to sub-surface ocean warming is a substantial contributor to the observed rise this century in global sea level. It is thus difficult to reconcile the observation that modern sea level is unprecedented over at least the past two millennia with the authors' claim that there has not been an anomalous increase in global ocean heat content over this time frame. Given that there is unlikely to have been any sea level rise contribution from melting ice sheets prior to the most recent decades, any explanation would have to involve extremely large sea level contributions from the melting of small glaciers and ice caps, contributions that exceed what is actually evident in the climate record.

Finally, we need to maintain a healthy skepticism about broad conclusions about global climate based drawn from one specific region like the tropical IndoPacific. It is surprising in this context that the article didn't mention or cite two studies published in the same journal (Science), a few years ago: Mann et al (2009) and Trouet et al (2009) which demonstrate a high degree of regional heterogeneity in global temperature changes over the past millennium. Both studies attribute much of that heterogeneity to dynamical climate responses related to the El Niño phenomenon. The tropical Pacific appears to have been in an anomalous La Niña-like state during the Medieval era. During such a state, which is the flip-side of El Niño, much of the tropical Pacific (the eastern and central tropical Pacific) is unusually cold. But the tropical western Pacific and IndoPacific are especially warm. That makes it perilous to draw inferences about global-scale warmth from this region (see this more detailed discussion at RealClimate).

There a few other minor, odd things about the study. In a figure comparing the sediment records with proxy reconstructions of surface temperature, the authors attribute one of the curves to "Mann 2003" in the figure legend. This would appear to be a reference to a rather old reconstruction by Mann and Jones (2003), which is supplanted by a newer, far more comprehensive studies by Mann et al (2008). The authors indeed cite this latter study in footnote of the figure caption. So it is unclear which reconstruction is actually being shown, and the comparison is potentially inappropriate. The authors, in a different figure, show a recent, longer albeit somewhat more tenuous reconstruction of global temperature over the past 11,000 years by Marcott et al (2013), published in Science earlier this year. That reconstruction was observed to be consistent with that of Mann et al (2008) during the interval of overlap of the past two millennia.

It is also puzzling that the article doesn't show or even cite the most comprehensive hemispheric reconstruction to date, that of the PAGES 2K consortium published in the journal Nature Geoscience two months before the present paper was submitted to Science. That reconstruction demonstrates modern warming to considerably exceed the peak warmth of the Medieval period, closely resembling the original Mann et al "Hockey Stick". It would have been useful to see all of these reconstructions, each of which demonstrate recent warmth to be anomalous in a long-term context, compared on the same graph against the sediment series of this study.

In summary, the Rosenthal study is interesting and it provides useful new paleoclimate data that give us an incrementally richer understanding of the details of climate changes in pre-historic times. However, there are a number of inconsistencies with other evidence, and debatable assumptions and interpretations, which will require sorting out by the scientific community. That is, of course, the "self-correcting" machinery of science that Carl Sagan spoke so eloquently of.



Link




...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
1229. Patrap
Is This the New Normal?
By: Christopher C. Burt, 1:47 PM CDT on October 31, 2013



Alaska and California seem to be stuck in a pattern since last May. A high pressure aloft over the eastern Pacific has brought abnormally warm weather to Alaska since May and dry weather to California since January. It is hard to make a case that this persistent ridge will remain in place indefinitely but, should it persist through this winter, it will have a significant impact on the California water supply.


The 500 mb pressure anomaly for the period of January 1-October 26 over North America. This stubborn pattern has resulted in the driest such period in California records. NCEP/NCAR reanalysis.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127378
1228. yoboi
Quoting 1226. Birthmark:
I sincerely hope that everyone who recognizes science and reads this blog hits the alert and minus buttons on denialist nonsense.

I hope no one quotes them, either.



WOW I agree with you...that's two times in 24 hrs.....When do you think the trapped door will open up in the ocean??????
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2325
1227. Xulonn
Quoting 1170. overwash12:
More moisture in the air with a warming Earth,or was it more droughts. I get confused from reading all the propaganda these days!
Duh!!

Stop reading propaganda and start reading science! It's quite consistent in it's analysis and conclusions, and full of hard-core evidence.
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I sincerely hope that everyone who recognizes science and reads this blog hits the alert and minus buttons on denialist nonsense.

I hope no one quotes them, either.

Member Since: October 30, 2005 Posts: 7 Comments: 5469
Quoting 1220. Cochise111:

LOL! Do you even read your own links before posting them? I doubt it. If you had you would have read the following in that article, ""We think temperatures in South Siberia stopped climbing in 2010-2011 and a decline is about to start," Daryin told reporters on Monday." -bold added

A. "They" think
B. South Siberia
C. ROFL
D. Guess what the "G" in "AGW" stands for. (Hint: It's not South Siberia
E. ROFLMAO

Try again.
Member Since: October 30, 2005 Posts: 7 Comments: 5469
1224. yoboi
Quoting 1222. Neapolitan:
That's awesome! Of course, Mr. Daryin and friends have completely failed to take into account the 3-and-a-half million metric tons of heat-trapping CO2 we humans are currently pumping into atmosphere every hour of every day, but aside from that little factoid, he may be onto something.

(I suppose such omissions are whats's made Daryin a low-level darling of the denialosphere.--and why Watt's obedient minions would be so quick to do their master's bidding by pasting the link on various science sites.)



I think you misread that article...based on your response....
Member Since: August 25, 2010 Posts: 7 Comments: 2325
Quoting 1222. Neapolitan:
That's awesome! Of course, Mr. Daryin and friends have completely failed to take into account the 3-and-a-half million metric tons of heat-trapping CO2 we humans are currently pumping into atmosphere every hour of every day, but aside from that little factoid, he may be onto something.

(I suppose such omissions are whats's made Daryin a low-level darling of the denialosphere.--and why Watt's obedient minions would be so quick to do their master's bidding by pasting the link on various science sites.)


Correct.

Here's an example just for New York City.. Imagine what the global output would look like....






...
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
Quoting 1220. Cochise111:
Russian Academy of Sciences has a new report that shows the cooling has begun:

Link
That's awesome! Of course, Mr. Daryin and friends have completely failed to take into account the 3-and-a-half million metric tons of heat-trapping CO2 we humans are currently pumping into atmosphere every hour of every day, but aside from that little factoid, he may be onto something.

(I suppose such omissions are whats's made Daryin a low-level darling of the denialosphere.--and why Watt's obedient minions would be so quick to do their master's bidding by pasting the link on various science sites.)
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13443
1221. Xandra
Quoting 1194. GTstormChaserCaleb:

[...] I will continue to show both sides of the argument on here.[...]

Click on the image below for information about the "other side".

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Russian Academy of Sciences has a new report that shows the cooling has begun:

Link
Member Since: February 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 319
Quoting 1194. GTstormChaserCaleb:
Didn't know I was turning in an analytical report? I would reference the page, but I forgot my log in. So here is a a href="Link" target="_blank">Link, I guess if it doesn't support your cause it automatically goes into the recycle bin. That's ok because I will continue to show both sides of the argument on here. And science as that video I posted in 1176 shows that the Arctic Ice Melt may alter the thermohaline conveyor belt replacing more fresh water over top of ocean water stopping the water pump known as the Gulf Stream from bring warmer waters to places like the UK and the Northeast US thus causing colder winters like we saw back in the 80s.



There it is- that place where you are turned around. There are not "both sides" to climate change, only to public policy discussions. The science is settled, we have only to decide what to do about it.
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Quoting 1216. ScottLincoln:

Caleb... It is overwhelmingly due to the burning of fossil fuels which produces greenhouse gases. There are other factors, however, but they do not all have the same net effect. Some have a net effect of cooling instead of warming. The other human climate factors include deforestation and urbanization, as well as the production of black carbon and aerosols.
The forcing graphic originally displayed above helps to illustrate our understanding of this:


Never mind lung cancer,skin cancer,asthma,stroke,heart attack and heat stroke....
Member Since: January 2, 2006 Posts: 127 Comments: 20390
1217. pcola57
A very touching and pertinent article from
Mother Nature Network..

"11-year-old leads march against climate change
It's often said that children are the future, and this kid is certainly fighting for hers. She deserves our help."


Link
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Quoting 1199. GTstormChaserCaleb:
Is it every country in the world contributing to GW in some way or is it just the countries that have the resources to contribute to GW. Reason I ask this is because we seem to equip the rising levels of CO2 and other greenhouse gases to GW which are produced from burning of fossil fuels and other non-renewable energy resources. So I'm thinking countries that aren't that technologically advanced or still relying on donkey carts and wagons as a form of transportation do they play a part in this as well and it what ways?

Caleb... It is overwhelmingly due to the burning of fossil fuels which produces greenhouse gases. There are other factors, however, but they do not all have the same net effect. Some have a net effect of cooling instead of warming. The other human climate factors include deforestation and urbanization, as well as the production of black carbon and aerosols.
The forcing graphic originally displayed above helps to illustrate our understanding of this:
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3159
Quoting 1214. Cochise111:
[I found another paper that I interpreted as concluding "it's the sun"]

You didn't read the paper very well. It specificlally mentions the correlation to solar activity breaking down after 1900, and temperature going in the opposite direction since around 2000.

As scientists have already studied and concluded numerous times, solar activity cannot explain the warming of the last several decades. The warming is mostly due to human activities, and we know this with high confidence.
Member Since: September 28, 2002 Posts: 5 Comments: 3159
Another paper demonstrating that average global land temperatures correlate almost exactly with solar radiation. How long before the CO2 argument is realized to be a fraud? Wait, it is everywhere except among the brainwashed or those who stand to profit from the alarmism.

Link
Member Since: February 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 319
1213. Patrap
Happy Halloween from ESL by LSU

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127378
Quoting 1205. Patrap:
Science has no time for emotions, as the Science on AGW is as strong as one will find in any field.



The time to discuss "is it real", was past a decade ago.

NOAA has all the relevant info as to causation and feedbacks occurring.







Great points, Pat,

The "debate" is just a delaying tactic by the denialsphere.

The subjects that we should be discussing are what to do about climate change and how. These subjects are more political and economic than scientific.
Member Since: June 27, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 3129
1211. pintada
Quoting 1180. Patrap:
When you add all this C02 en masse to the closed Earth System, what did they think was going to happen?

Now that were at 400ppm and rising, the feedbacks are starting to accelerate.

Toss in a massive Methane release and bada boom'

The Climate Change Pandora's Box is creaking open, and lil wiggly things will continue to fly out.





Buckle up,...



Smart guy, even if he raises peppers that hang down.
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1210. pintada
Quoting 1012. Birthmark:

Very low probability.


Lots of things in nature have low probability until they start to happen.

Lots of things in nature have low probability until they start to happen.

Link
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1209. Torito
Quoting 1207. Patrap:
Thanx for your knowledgeable input.

Now you can go back to playing met in Jeff's entry.


Ok :)
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Sorokhtin, Chilingar and Khilyuk have form in being wrong on this subject, their 2008 paper, Cooling of Atmosphere due to CO2 Emission is a case in point.

The title, itself, violates well known physics. Science of Doom has debunked this paper here:

Someone on another blog reminded me about this paper – Cooling of Atmosphere due to CO2 Emission, by Chilingar, Khilyuk and Sorokhtin (2008).

It’s clearly impressed many people, but it’s not a good paper. It’s main strength is misdirection.

Traditional anthropogenic theory of currently observed global warming states that release of carbon dioxide into atmosphere (partially as a result of utilization of fossil fuels) leads to an increase in atmospheric temperature because the molecules of CO2 (and other greenhouse gases) absorb the infrared radiation from the Earth’s surface. This statement is based on the Arrhenius hypothesis, which was never verified (Arrhenius, 1896).

The proponents of this theory take into consideration only one component of heat transfer in atmosphere, i.e., radiation. Yet, in the dense Earth’s troposphere with the pressure pa > 0:2 atm, the heat from the Earth’s surface is mostly transferred by convection (Sorokhtin, 2001a). According to our estimates, convection accounts for 67%, water vapor condensation in troposphere accounts for 25%, and radiation accounts for about 8% of the total heat transfer from the Earth’s surface to troposphere. Thus, convection is the dominant process of heat transfer in troposphere, and all the theories of Earth’s atmospheric heating (or cooling) first of all must consider this process of heat (energy)– mass redistribution in atmosphere..


Emphasis added.

The highlighted statement from the 2nd paragraph is false. Open any atmospheric physics textbook and you will find a treatment of convection.


The last sentence in the first paragraph(my emphasis) is also false. Science of Doom provides much more evidence and discussion and concludes:

...Conclusion
The paper demonstrates nothing about the effect of increased CO2 on the earth’s climate.

It doesn’t show a problem in established arguments, like from Manabe and Strickler (1964), Ramanathan and Coakley (1978) or any other paper. The authors of this 2008 paper just imagine the established science away.

Understanding how the earth and atmosphere cool to space via radiation is a critical component in understanding surface temperature changes.


I learned a long time ago in grad that an article appears to contradict the scientific consensus on something as basic as the effect of CO2, one should be very skeptical and check out what other scientist have said about it and the history of the authors. Never trust anything radical without verifying.
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1207. Patrap
Thanx for your knowledgeable input.

Now you can go back to playing met in Jeff's entry.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 419 Comments: 127378

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About RickyRood

I'm a professor at U Michigan and lead a course on climate change problem solving. These articles often come from and contribute to the course.