Data dominates the skeptic’s view of the state of the globe’s temperature and where that temperature may be heading. The climate computer models dominate the warmers view. Temperature is at the heart of the global warming issue in that just about every other indicator is a function of the temperature. For example, sea level change is the product of melting ice at the South Pole and Greenland along with the lesser masses of ice in the high elevations of the mountain ranges. Rainfall, and its shadow drought are said to be forced by changes in the temperature. Higher ocean temperatures, we are assured, breed the hurricanes and typhoons. So this posting will focus on global temperatures.
First it would be well to try to understand the past. Ice core analyses from the Antarctica were used to reconstruct global temperatures for the last 420,000 years. Figure 2 below, from climate4you.com illustrates the temperature for that period of time:
Fig.2. Reconstructed global temperature over the past 420,000 years based on the Vostok ice core from the Antarctica (Petit et al. 2001). The record spans over four glacial periods and five interglacials, including the present. The horizontal line indicates the modern temperature.
From climate4you.com comes the following discussion: “The present interglacial period (the Holocene) is seen to the right (red square). The preceding four interglacials are seen at about 125,000, 280,000, 325,000 and 415,000 years before now, with the longer glacial periods in between. All four previous interglacials are seen to be warmer (1-3°C) than the present. The typical length of a glacial period is about 100,000 years, while an interglacial period typical lasts for about 10-15,000 years. The present interglacial period has now lasted about 11,600 years.
According to ice core analysis, the atmospheric CO2 concentrations during all four prior interglacials never rose above approximately 290 ppm; whereas the atmospheric CO2 concentration today stands at nearly 390 ppm. The present interglacial is about 2°C colder than the previous interglacial, even though the atmospheric CO2 concentration now is about 100 ppm higher.
The diagram below (Fig.3) shows the major part of the present interglacial period, the Holocene, as seen from the summit of the Greenland Ice cap. The approximate positions of some warm historical periods are shown by the green bars, with intervening cold periods.
Fig.3. The upper panel shows the air temperature at the summit of the Greenland Ice Sheet reconstructed by Alley (2000) from GISP2 ice core data. The time scale shows years before modern time. The rapid temperature rise to the left indicate the final part of the even more pronounced temperature increase following the last ice age. The temperature scale at the right hand side of the upper panel suggests a very approximate comparison with the global average temperature. The GISP2 record ends around 1854, and the two graphs therefore ends here. There has since been an temperature increase to about the same level as during the Medieval Warm Period and to about 395 ppm for CO2. The small reddish bar in the lower right indicate the extension of the longest global temperature record (since 1850), based on meteorological (HadCRUT3). The lower panel shows the past atmospheric CO2 content, as found from the EPICA Dome C Ice Core in the Antarctic (Monnin et al.2004). The Dome C atmospheric CO2 record ends in the year 1777.
For the last 4000 years the Greenland temperature has trended lower. Climate4you.com surmise that this may indicate the early stages of the coming ice age. Further they conclude there is little indication of any relationship between atmospheric CO2 and temperature change. The preceding shows that alarmist claims about something being the highest temperatures in history are probably not credible.
Continuously recorded temperature records began about 1850. The following diagram shows the period since 1850 (indicated by the reddish bar in Figure 3 above).
The trend for this period was 0.81C/century as discussed in the WUWT posting “Memo to Paris: don’t base policy on overblown prediction” by Christopher Monckton.
The most current trend is the “pause” so called by the warmers. The satellite temperature measurements by the RSS system for the period from February, 1997 to October, 2015 show a zero warming trend. The current El Nino could end this trend, but a La Nina normally follows an El Nino and it could be reestablished within several years. See the chart below also prepared by the WUWT posting noted above:
And lastly the reason for the comment about “Dreams from my
father climate computer models.
You may be unaware that the forecasts made by the warmer computer models are not the product of a single computer. When the above chart was made some 78 models were being used, and that probably has not change much since this chart was made. Each of those thin lines represents a model’s forecast of future global temperature. It looks like nest of snakes. The bold black line is the “average” of all those computer forecasts. Below the snake pit, one can see the squares and circles which are plots of actual measurements of temperature. The squares represent two satellite systems— UAH and RSS measurements. The circles represent the weather balloon temperature measurements. These two different approaches provide a good correlation. But as you can see the model forecasts do not match actual measurements of temperature. I have always thought that if you really knew how to forecast future temperatures, you would only need one computer—not 78!!
You might be wondering what the boxes represent. The Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) has produced 5 studies of the state of the climate. The IPCC likes to tell people how confident they are of their forecasts. The second IPCC report assured the readers that they were becoming more confident of these forecasts. The next one was “likely with a confidence of 66%. By the last report their confidence in the forecast was 95% extremely likely. And this came as their forecast and actual data continued to separate. Because the IPCC said the forecast was almost perfect, the typical media or government person probably did not bother to check out if it was true. If you had been in charge, would you have labeled it extremely likely?
Lets look at the forecast that says catastrophe awaits us unless we do something drastic. The following chart is from the WUWT posting noted above.
This global temperature prediction in 1990 by the warmers is rising at about 3times faster than the two satellite actual measurements.
You may be thinking that this discussion is “how many angels can dance on the head of a pin”. But what could be imposed upon the citizens of the world is almost too dreadful to consider if the warmers have their way. Skeptics generally believe that the planet is warming. They just don’t buy into the idea that CO2 is the major factor in causing the warming. Even the most strident of the warmers recognize that the biggest factor is water vapor, not CO2. The warmer’s theory says that every increment of temperature increase caused by CO2 will increase the water vapor in the atmosphere. Thus they say the theoretical increase of 1C caused by CO2 becomes 3C. This is called climate “sensitivity”.
I am back again to the point I made several posting ago. Science is not the motivating force here. If it were, there probably would be no Paris COP21, Its politics and culture. All politicians want to tax and regulate. This program will provide that. The culturist want to drive a stake in the heart of capitalism and move rule to the UN for a socialist nirvana. This program could provide that.
President Obama and others are following dreams rather than facts.