And what rough beast, its hour come round at last / Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

Hansen’s paper, of course. Tee hee. So all you po-faced people who want to be Terribly Serious can go off and put really really silly comments over at ATTP’s (gloss: too many people who haven’t even read the paper are simply pushing their own views via the paper; much in the same way that too many people that want fewer CO2 emissions manage to convince themselves that suing Exxon makes sense1). Peter Thorne has already said almost everything that needs to be said, although since he is a nice chap writing within the scientific style, much of what he said was too subtle for many people; but I’m not going to gloss what he said because no-one but a bozo could mistake his meaning. I don’t really agree with his “It is the absolute right of the journal and its editors to publish any piece using their best judgement upon completion of a proper peer review process”. Or rather, I agree with the literal words but not that they mean anything in this context so they are effectively deceptive (I don’t think they used their best judgement, and the peer review process wasn’t proper). At one point it looked like the editor, F. Dentener, might show some spine but in the end he knuckled under to Da Man.

I jumped the gun a little last time, but not much: compare the original, the “gun jumper” and the final:

we posit that ice sheet mass loss can be approximated by a doubling time up to sea level rise of at least several meters. Doubling times of 10, 20 or 40 years yield sea level rise of several meters in 50, 100 or 10 200 years We hypothesize that ice mass loss from the most vulnerable ice, sufficient to raise sea level several meters, is better approximated as exponential than by a more linear response. Doubling times of 10, 20 or 40 years yield multi-meter sea level rise in about 50, 100 or 200 years We hypothesize that ice mass loss from the most vulnerable ice, sufficient to raise sea level several meters, is better approximated as exponential than by a more linear response. Doubling times of 10, 20 or 40 years yield multi-meter sea level rise in about 50, 100 or 200 years

Meh, they’re all the same. The WaPo quotes one “Barbara Ferreira” as saying the paper was subject to “major revisions in terms of organisation, title and conclusions”. But I’m dubious. Indeed the WaPo is too, since it says the paper is “relatively intact”, whatever that means. Here is something from the old and new versions: can you tell which is which?

The message that the climate science delivers to policymakers, instead of defining a safe “guardrail”, is that fossil fuel CO2 emissions must be reduced as rapidly as practical. We conclude that the message our climate science delivers to society, policymakers, and the public alike is this: we have a global emergency. Fossil fuel CO2 emissions should be reduced as rapidly as practical.

There’s a 19-page “shorted version” available. 19. Page. Short. Version. Did you get that?

I don’t think this process says anything about the value, or otherwise, of open peer review2. The problem was the paper and the author, not the review. We all remember RC’s Peer Review: A Necessary But Not Sufficient Condition so we all agree that anyone saying James Hansen’s Bombshell Climate Warning Is Now Part of the Scientific Canon is an idiot.

The silence of the co-authors

Need I say more?

Hence the extreme short-term sea-level rise is not a prediction arising from the model at all, and assertions to the contrary are patently false

PT notes this point, and it seems that many of the less thinking meeja were fooled; e.g. the Graun. Indeed Hansen et al. get it wrong too, stating we conclude that multi-meter sea level rise would become practically unavoidable, probably within 50–150 years. Whereas what they really mean is that they assume large sea level rise.

Apologies for the break in blogging: I’ve been rowing again. Click on the pic for more.

Notes

1. For example the HuffPo and Open Mind are wrong. Ha, the HuffPo think is by Mann, oh well.
2. I pretty well agree with Eli: open review is good.

Refs

* Hyping Hansen’s Paper – DA
* The Arctic sets yet another record low maximum winter extent – also DA
* The Very Odd Idea That Exxon Should Become A Renewable Energy Company – Timmy

Le Hansen nouveau est re-arrive

But it still tastes sour. Perhaps it needs more time to mature? Rushing half-fermented stuff out is not good. What’s in, what’s out? Well, who can possibly be bothered to read and compare them line by line? Certainly not me. Certainly not any of the commentators at Eli’s. Prove me wrong if you like: new and old. If I’d actually bothered to review this I’d be p*ss*d off with the journal.

For example, compare:

we posit that ice sheet mass loss can be approximated by a doubling time up to sea level rise of at least several meters. Doubling times of 10, 20 or 40 years yield sea level rise of several meters in 50, 100 or
10 200 years
We hypothesize that ice mass loss from the most vulnerable ice, sufficient to raise sea level several meters, is better approximated as exponential than by a more linear response. Doubling times of 10, 20 or 40 years yield multi-meter sea level rise in about 50, 100 or 200 years

So, it’s the same made-up stuff, but they replace “posit” with “hypothesise”, even if they can’t spell it properly. Wonderful.

If the ocean continues to accumulate heat and increase melting of marine-terminating ice shelves of Antarctica and Greenland, a point will be reached at which it is impossible to avoid large scale ice sheet disintegration with sea level rise of at least several meters

Yup; but that’s dull and uncontroversial (actually I thought we’d reached that point already with Greenland). But the important point is over what timescale all these things will happen. It is all very well to worry about multi-millenial climate change – and indeed, I think someone ought to – but predicting the future is hard, and predicting the far future is harder; so (to re-make an argument I’ve made before) whilst looking only to 2100 is in some ways a bit short sighted, from a societal point of view I doubt you can do better.

The paper is still far too long. They’ve danced the order round but failed to split it up into several papers of sane length that could actually be read. Why would you prefer to write a stupidly long paper that can’t be read? Not a difficult question. If the hosing experiments have been reworked or made more plausible, I’ve missed it; they still look passe.

Meh, I can’t be bothered to re-read it. Can anyone else? Don’t be shy.

Refs

* Le Stern Nouveau est arrive!
* Productivity of North American grasslands is increased under future climate scenarios despite rising aridity Nature Climate Change (2016) doi:10.1038/nclimate2942

Murry Salby ha ha ha

Climate change critic Murry Salby loses case against university1. Tee hee. Thrust, ah-ha, king of the impossible. Or, perhaps not.

O/T, but those interested in the fate of the US coal companies should read Bronte Capital on the puzzling disparity between the price of Peabody debt, and their shares. As an incentive, there’s a huge finanical reward for anyone who can solve the mystery.

Refs

* The peer review of Ollila (2016) – RT

Notes

1. Now subs-only, it appears. Never mind; you can read the court judgement instead (thanks CH//JM). Summary: “Murry Salby, you are a waste of time”. Also, ES at #7 provides a link to someone’s cut-n-paste of The Oz.

The RSS Middle Tropospheric Temperature Now V4.0

Old news now, of course, but there’s a blog post by Carl Mears with nice pix and explanation. Notice this is TMT, not TLT, but at this point we’re largely arguing about the differences between the different groups, and its fine for that. It is, of course, all nicely published in proper style. By contrast, UAH version 6.0 (ahem, beta) was announced most of a year ago and is still not actually a paper, as far as I know. It would be hard for it to be; they’re now on beta 5. Don’t miss me snarking about how crap their code is. Reading the “beta 5” I’m struck by how ad-hoc the changes seem to be (“We therefore changed the AMSU5 reference Earth incidence angle (from 35.0 to 38.3 deg.)…”). By contrast with the professionalism of RSS, UAH seems amateurish.

Update: speaking of amateurish, there’s As it is, when John Christy and I are gone, the UAH global temperature dataset might well die with us by RS. He explains this by not-popular-views, but I think that’s just an excuse; more likely, he’s admitting that their code+methods are so tangled, that no-one else could pick them up. A bit part of any long-term monitoring is leaving it in a fit state for others to continue.

Lents: Jesus on Christ's

Alas. But it was a good week. this, for my own records, and possibly for you interest if that’s the kind of thing you’re interested in.

Summary:

Men: Caius serene, Downing troubled a little by Pembroke charging at them, but not past the Plough. Christ’s up one, Kings spoons.
Women: Jesus up two (Emma, Christ’s) to head; Downing had their chance on Saturday but weren’t up to it; indeed, they crabbed at the Plough and were nearly caught by Christ’s, who alas were caught be Newnham – who I quite like – instead.

Here’s a pic from Wednesday and – breaking the habit of a lifetime – I’ve embedded if from fb rather than just nicking it. Pembroke are about to catch the unlucky Queens’, and will get Jesus on Thursday.

And then my videos:

Women:

* Women, Saturday
* Women, Friday
* Women, Thursday
* Women, Wednesday continued

men:

* Men, Saturday
* Men, Friday
* Men, Thursday
* Men, Wednesday

Video quality is only 480 pixel on Saturday, due to Technical Issues.