Friday, August 31, 2012

Stochastic Observations of Climate News

My guess for the UAH global lower troposphere anomaly for August is 0.31°C, which would be the 4th-warmest August in their 34 years of records. The El Nino year 1998 is still the warmest, at 0.45°C.


Speaking of El Nino, the Queensland (Australian) Department of Environment and Resource Management says "approximately 80 per cent of international global climate models, and most models surveyed by the BoM (‘ENSO Wrap-Up’(PDF) July 31), indicate the possibility of an El Niño event developing before summer." That would be good news for relief of the US drought, bad news for global temperatures.


Some of the "fake skeptics" have been saying that Arctic sea ice records only go back to the start of the satellite era in 1979. Tamino shows that's not true.


PIOMAS has released their monthly estimates of Arctic sea ice volume early, no doubt to get in on the record-breaking. The losses in volume are stunning. Here are the losses from past years, compared to their last data point of 8/26/12:

in 5 years: -47% 
in 10 years: -68% 
in 20 years: -76% 
in 30 years: -74% 

I wonder how low it can go before their model breaks down.


I can't get too worked up about Mitt Romney's speech last night, where he made fun of global warming:
"President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans," pausing for the audience to laugh at the absurdity, "and to heal the planet. My promise ... is to help you and your family."
Let's face it, Romney will say anything to get elected, whether it's consistent with what he's said in the past or not. There has probably never been a less principled and more craven person running for president.... I actually feel kind of sorry for the guy (but will be even sorrier for the country if he is elected.)


George Monbiot goes there:
The third event was that the Republican party in the United States began its national convention in Tampa, Florida – a day late. Why? Because of the anticipated severity of hurricane Isaac, which reached the US last night.... The Republican party's leading lights either deny climate change altogether, or argue that people can adapt to whatever a changed climate may bring, so there's nothing to worry about. The deluge of reality has had no impact on the party's determination to wish the physical world away. As points out, most of the major figures lined up to speak at the convention deny that man-made climate change is happening. When your children ask how and why it all went so wrong, point them to yesterday's date, and explain that the world is not led by rational people.
One hurricane does not prove global warming! For crying out loud.... This kind of thing, like McKibben's Twitter feed that Keith Kloor called "a dutiful chronicler of weather-related bad news," does more harm than good. It turns people off and makes them dismiss you -- as they should, because it's no different than 'it was cold last week in Missoula, Montana" items that are pumped out from the likes of

Besides, to me hurricanes are far down on the list of concerns from global warming. Sure, they can be bad if you're in one, but they're local, people can always get out of the way, and they're hardly new or unprecedented. Would you rather be in 5 hurricanes today or the one back in New England in 1938 (it killed about 700 people)?

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