An Interesting Error In Timmy’s analysis of Equilar’s Calculations Of CEO Pay

18581603_1454960587902203_7934923190499350154_n Well, interesting to me anyway. As to whether it is an error or not, I’ll let you judge. Please do attempt to judge. Comments saying “I hate Timmy” are about as much use as “Al Gore is fat”.

The story so far: Timmy says Contrary To AP/Equilar’s Research The Top US CEOs Did Not Average $11.5 Million Last Year and his reason for saying that is accounting for stock options. For example

The top-paid CEO last year was Thomas Rutledge of Charter Communications, at $98 million. The vast majority of that came from stock and option awards included as part of a new five-year employment agreement, and Charter’s stock will need to more than double for Rutledge to collect the full amount.

So, for the purposes of discussion, let’s assume that when we think of CEO “pay” we need to be aware that lots of it is not salary, but stock options paying out. We also need to be aware that those options don’t vest in a single year – as in the above, they’ll typically vest over a time period, perhaps 5 years. But Timmy then continues:

But the stock award is over 5 years. So, it’s much, much, more accurate to say that he got $20 million last year, one fifth of the 5 year stock award. The reason Equilar report it the way they do is because the company has had to expense that stock award in the year it was granted… And yes, they then take the mean average of all of the pay packets to give us what the average CEO gets paid. But those top numbers are always going to be inflated by the few CEOs who got multi-year stock awards in any one year. The AP/Equilar measure of CEO pay seriously overstates matters because they’re allocating multi-year stock awards to pay in the year of issuance, not over the period they vest.

If there were only a few CEOs earning big bucks, then Timmy would be right: some years that average earnings would blip up, when they got their awards; but then again other years it would blip down, when they didn’t. But actually, there are loads of CEOs (many of whom will likely, I think, have overlapping awards) so in the end is just averages out; and the above analysis doesn’t reveal any major error in Equilar’s calculations.

But there is an error, a smaller one, ironically hinted at in the quote he quotes: …and Charter’s stock will need to more than double for Rutledge to collect the full amount. Which is they’re calculating as though all these awards will pay out at full value, which of course they won’t all do. I didn’t notice it myself; that’s also from another Timmy column.

Photogenic teens sue US government, part 2

Another in the long disappearing-up-my-own-arse series. Photogenic teens sue US government refers, of course, but so does U.S. fossil fuel groups pull out of climate change court case (via, and I’m sure you wanted to know this, C on Twitter). To whom I’m indebted for The money quote: “But discord arose among them after a judge ordered them to submit a joint filing stating their views on climate science.” Which is glorious, and reflects the obvious and often-stated: that the denialists only real position is denial; they have no concrete worldview to put in its place; no coherent theory of their own, other than “the IPCC is wrong and Al Gore is phat”. Which doubtless sounds great down a bar but isn’t terribly impressive when a judge asks you to state your views.

Need I say more? I hope you like the cartoon. You could have had a picture of my wisteria but I decided you’d prefer the coldness.

Analysis* of Pope Francis’ Encyclical Laudato Si?

DSCN7826-cathedral-toads I like the “Analysis*”; it reminds me of Tesco’s “Finest*”, where I think they intend the “*” to mean “star” as in quality; but I always read it as “*” as in “footnote: may not actually contain fine quality ingredients”. But I digress. In this case, the “*” really is a footnote: Note that scientists only assessed information related to climate science. The following analysis is not an endorsement of the economic, political, or moral content of the encyclical. One can quibble whether reading only a small portion of a document is a useful overall assessment, but clearly if we’re interested in the science, it isn’t unreasonable.

Oh, didn’t I say? This is an analysis by Climate Feedback, and ends up with an overall grade of “scientific credibility 0.9: high”. Since it gets basically the right answer that was nearly inevitable. I didn’t even especially disagree although quite why they felt the need to assess it when I already had, I don’t know.

Note the amusing UPDATE (25 May 2017): The Encyclical has been edited, clarifying one of the statements that scientists had highlighted here. The problematic statement initially read “Concentrated in the atmosphere, these gases do not allow the warmth of the sun’s rays reflected by the earth to be dispersed in space” and has been updated to “As these gases build up in the atmosphere, they hamper the escape of heat produced by sunlight at the earth’s surface“. I’d described that as an oddity back in 2015; sadly Da Pope doesn’t listen to me. Some of the reviews are rather damming with faint praise; Andreas Klocker writes Some facts are a bit oversimplified (but not wrong) and Alexis Berg writes In the few passages dealing with climate science, this text does not contain major scientific inaccuracies.

Obviously, I should quibble what they say. Where to start?

Kerry Emanuel , Professor of Atmospheric Science at MIT

Says The Pope’s encyclical is strongly aligned with the scientific consensus about the reality and risks posed by global warming. The most striking feature of the encyclical is its linking of environmental degradation to cultural and political decline, painting it as a moral issue, not just a practical problem. Well, maybe. But KE seems to have rather strayed from his brief of assessing the science. Jonathan Lauderdale falls into the same pitfall with The key part of this document is bridging the gap between the scientific observations that we make, which often do not engage the public’s attention, and the moral implications of humans as guardians of our planet (whether you are religious or not, this still makes sense).

Various other people make minor quibbles, although these do rather amount to “if one of my students had written this, I’d tell them to do it again”.

Reading past chapter 1

None of them bother read past chapter 1, so they all miss Da Pope’s attack on science: This subject makes every effort to establish the scientific and experimental method, which in itself is already a technique of possession, mastery and transformation… It can be said that many problems of today’s world stem from the tendency, at times unconscious, to make the method and aims of science and technology an epistemological paradigm which shapes the lives of individuals and the workings of society.

Oh well. They really should have asked Mialambre for his opinion.

Refs

* An Answer to the Pope, a Leader of Libertarianism’s Critics.

The polar amplification asymmetry: role of Antarctic surface height

ant1 I apologise for breaking into the stream of politics for some science: Temperatures in the Arctic are increasing around three times as fast as the global average, yet the pace of warming has been much slower at Earth’s other pole. A new study, just published in Earth System Dynamics, suggests the difference might – in part – be down to the great heights of Antarctica’s land surface. The article is The polar amplification asymmetry: role of Antarctic surface height by Marc Salzmann. And since it’s open-access I’m sure they won’t mind me copying from their abstract:

Previous studies have attributed an overall weaker (or slower) polar amplification in Antarctica compared to the Arctic to a weaker Antarctic surface albedo feedback and also to more efficient ocean heat uptake in the Southern Ocean in combination with Antarctic ozone depletion. Here, the role of the Antarctic surface height for meridional heat transport and local radiative feedbacks, including the surface albedo feedback, was investigated based on CO2-doubling experiments in a low-resolution coupled climate model. When Antarctica was assumed to be flat, the north–south asymmetry of the zonal mean top of the atmosphere radiation budget was notably reduced… between 24 and 80%… of the polar amplification asymmetry was explained by the difference in surface height, but… might to some extent also depend on model uncertainties.

So there you go. I’ll assume you’ve read the (open access) paper. And you get the idea from the image I’ve cut-n-pasted: under 2xCO24, the Arctic is hardly affected by flattening Antarctica but Antarctica warms much more. However, although this isn’t unbelievable, it kinda goes against what I thought I knew – which is to say, the conventional explanation that they quote -, so I should look for some flaw in it. As should you! Don’t take anything for granted. Ideally you’d do that by carefully reading the paper and pondering it’s arguements, but life is too short so I’ll leave that to you; I’ll just do some drive-bys1.

ant2 As the abstract hints, this is not a sooper-dooper hi-rez model, and they give some evidence of not fully trusting it. I’m not going to quibble any details, but see this second pic I’ve inlined. It is the zonal average response, over 600 years vertical time. And you’ll see two odd things. One in the control runs, which I’ll come back to in a moment, and the second in the 2xCO2 runs.

And that is, that the warming in the Antarctic is greater than the warming in the Arctic by about the time of, oh, year 130. By bizarre chance, the first inlined pic is from years 80-109. Had they drawn the same pic for year 570-599, it would have looked very different and (dare I say) rather less convincing. Their explanation for this is THC shutdown, which as they say simpler models are rather more prone to. Well actually they say The weaker Arctic warming in the middle of the 2 × CO2 base run (Fig. 13b) is an indication of a slowing of the ocean’s meridional overturning circulation (MOC). Such a slowdown has often been found in CO2 perturbation experiments, and it tended to be stronger in low-resolution, low-complexity models compared to state-of-the-art highresolution models. Since the CESM was run at a low resolution in this study, this finding should also not be overinterpreted. From that I deduce that they didn’t carefully look through all the diagnostics to verify MOC slowdown, but it’s a reasonable guess. Anyway, the point that MS doesn’t then link to is the polar see-saw (that’s my pic!) and it would be natural to suppose that a (relative) Arctic cooling would lead to Antarctic warming. And it is possible (though I admit to not having fully joined the dots) that this is (part of) their enhanced Antarctic warming.

You might also wonder about the spin-up. Coupled models generally require some, and it looks like MS was a bit careless in this regard: It should be noted that Antarctic warming relative to the respective control run (Fig. 14a) was stronger in the flat AA than in the base model setup throughout almost the entire 600-year period. However, even though the temperature in the flat AA control run stabilized after a moderate initial warming and even though the temperature evolution from the control run was subtracted in this analysis, it cannot be completely ruled out that this moderate initial warming could have also played a role in the later development in the 2 × CO2 flat AA run. Therefore, in retrospect2, starting the flat AA 2 × CO2 run from a separate long flat AA spinup run and prescribing a more realistic gradual increase of the CO2 concentration, which would allow the inspection of the first decades of the CO2 perturbation experiments, would have been better.

The last point, which I’ve now come back to, is that despite the “even though the temperature in the flat AA control run stabilized after a moderate initial warming”, I can’t see it. You’d expect some decades of warming in the Antarctic in the control run as heat is advected in as the continent is suddenly flattened. But no; at least, as I say, I can’t see it.

Anyway, there you go. I enjoyed writing that. Rip me to shreds3.

Notes

1. At one point, we had a policy against drive-by reviews. Because the thick-as-pigshit management thought that having problems with your code pointed out by people who were too busy to review all your code was bad, because the darling snowflakes sometimes got offended.

2. I read that “in retrospect” as “bollocks, the referees noticed it”.

3. In memory of the Rude Mechanicals

4. Note: these are instantaneous-doubling CO2 experiments, which I thought had largely gone out of fashion, as they are somewhat less realistic that the steady-increase type.

FT: The Big Green Bang: how renewable energy became unstoppable

A happy story for once. Isn’t that nice? The Big Green Bang: how renewable energy became unstoppable (archive) from those commie pinkos at the FT: …the disruptive impact of green energy on companies — and entire industries — around the world. After years of hype and false starts, the shift to clean power has begun to accelerate at a pace that has taken the most experienced experts by surprise… Wind and solar parks are being built at unprecedented rates, threatening the business models of established power companies. Electric cars that were hard to even buy eight years ago are selling at an exponential rate, in the process driving down the price of batteries that hold the key to unleashing new levels of green growth.

One should not get too carried away, because …None of this means the problem of climate change has been solved, or that fossil fuels will vanish in the near future. Oil, gas and coal still account for about 86 per cent of the energy keeping the world’s lights on, cars running and homes warm — a share that has barely changed in 25 years. Coal and gas-fired power plants are still being built, especially in the developing world where 1.2bn people lack electricity. Modern renewables, in contrast, are growing from a tiny base and are often less dependable than dirtier power generators that do not rely on the weather. Wind and solar power accounted for a puny 4.4 per cent of global electricity in 2015, and big battery systems can only store enough power to satisfy a few seconds of global electricity demand, says the International Energy Agency. Electric vehicle sales last year were just 0.9 per cent of all vehicles sold, according to the EV-Volumes consultancy.

And then again But the emerging energy transition is already causing trouble for companies around the world, from writedowns and shrinking sales to sliding share prices and wholesale break-ups.

Aanyway, you get the point. You know all this stuff anyway. The interesting point for me is that the FT choose to splash it all over.

The other fodder is a section called “Thanks, Germany” which says When the definitive history of the energy transition is written, the taxpayers of Germany will deserve their own chapter. They bankrolled the green energy revolution known as the Energiewende, pioneering generous subsidies nearly 20 years ago that helped drive renewables up from 9 per cent of Germany’s electricity mix in 2004 to 32 per cent last year. As other European nations — and some US states — boarded the green power wagon, it kindled a wave of demand for wind turbines and solar panels that helped drive costs down worldwide. Solar’s price fall was especially steep after a Chinese manufacturing boom spurred global over-supply. So, yeah. It probably needed subsidies to kick start this stuff. It probably wasn’t the most efficient way (Carbon Tax Now) but meh.

DSC_6468

Arctic stronghold of world’s seeds flooded after permafrost melts?

A bit weird, this. The Graun reports

No seeds were lost but the ability of the rock vault to provide failsafe protection against all disasters is now threatened by climate change… the Global Seed Vault, buried in a mountain deep inside the Arctic circle, has been breached after global warming produced extraordinary temperatures over the winter, sending meltwater gushing into the entrance tunnel… soaring temperatures in the Arctic at the end of the world’s hottest ever recorded year led to melting and heavy rain, when light snow should have been falling. “It was not in our plans to think that the permafrost would not be there and that it would experience extreme weather like that,” said Hege Njaa Aschim, from the Norwegian government, which owns the vault… “A lot of water went into the start of the tunnel and then it froze to ice, so it was like a glacier when you went in,” she told the Guardian. Fortunately, the meltwater did not reach the vault itself, the ice has been hacked out, and the precious seeds remain safe for now at the required storage temperature of -18C. But the breach has questioned the ability of the vault to survive as a lifeline for humanity if catastrophe strikes. “It was supposed to [operate] without the help of humans, but now we are watching the seed vault 24 hours a day,” Aschim said. “We must see what we can do to minimise all the risks and make sure the seed bank can take care of itself.”… The vault managers are now taking precautions, including major work to waterproof the 100m-long tunnel into the mountain and digging trenches into the mountainside to channel meltwater and rain away. They have also removed electrical equipment from the tunnel that produced some heat and installed pumps in the vault itself in case of a future flood.

It would be nice to have more details but the vault’s own page doesn’t deign to notice the problem.

So you can say two things about this. One is the obvious: ZOMG Global Warming is Worse Than We Could Possibly Have Imagined! But the other is… this is really rubbish planning and design. Something that was supposed to be proof against centuries of GW was really badly designed. The wiki page helpfully tells us Running the length of the facility’s roof and down the front face to the entryway is an illuminated artwork named Perpetual Repercussion by Norwegian artist Dyveke Sanne that marks the location of the vault from a distance. In Norway, government-funded construction projects exceeding a certain cost must include artwork. KORO, the Norwegian State agency overseeing art in public spaces, engaged the artist to install lighting that highlights the importance and qualities of Arctic light. That’s all terribly sweet, but would it have been a good idea to have less art and more engineering? As wiki puts it, Competence is required.

Update: there’s now a (somewhat belated IMO; probably it took them a while to get their line straight) press release but in my browser that’s sh*t; you may prefer to read the archive instead. Top line: Svalbard Global Seed Vault is facing technical improvements in connection with water intrusion which I take to be a fossil of hasty drafting; presumably the first version said “facing technical challenges” or somesuch.

And then again, popsci says it’s all fine. Why not just release some pix?

18489862_10155315194222350_1547705909098284139_o

Refs

* Middle-aged hamster buys expensive new wheel – DailyMash
* Adam Smith makes the case for free trade and warns against the sophistry of domestic producers seeking protectionism – AEI
* A basic guide to software engineering terms
* MEDITERRANEAN NEW FOCUS OF CLIMATE SKEPTICISM – RS
* CIP on speed
* from page 418 of Thomas Babington Macaulay’s magisterial The History of England (1848-61) via CafeHayek
* WaPo

Moon Jae-in orders shutdown of old coal-fired power plants

18491371_10155308407957350_3412797447490309162_o A minor note; President (Moon Jae-in)’s decision to halt operating aged coal-fired plants shows his strong will to provide a fundamental solution to the current fine dust problem,” said Yoon Young-chan, the chief press secretary. Yoon also said Moon has ordered the senior social affairs secretary to create a special task force to deal with measures to combat fine dust here via VV on Twitter.

Which is to say, it seems likely that lots of coal will be retired for it’s other polluting properties, rather than it’s CO2 emissions. This isn’t a new observation of course.

Meanwhile, it’s springtime in the garden and the irii1 are out.

In other news, yet another successful SpaceX launch, yawn :-).

Notes

1. Of course I don’t know.

Refs

* Quotation of the Day at Cafe Hayek from page 154 of John Cochrane’s superb 2014 speech “Why and How We Care About Inequality”.
* 21st Century College Admissions: Bidding for Brains – via CafeHayek

Straight outta the lab, down the stairs and into the bucket of jellied eels

18237772_10155266045752350_5426834072615069460_o Sorry, I couldn’t resist the memory. This is about Out of the lab and into the field? by ATTP, who as usual is far too polite about Out of the lab and into the field by Dan M. Kahan & Katherine Carpenter, Nature Climate Change 7, 309–311 (2017) doi:10.1038/nclimate3283. I convincingly demolished this as a load of toss based merely on the rather short abstract, but was uneasily aware that some kind person might mail me the article itself, and so it was. Thank you, you know who you are. Since we’re on “out of”, I feel I should recommend Straight outta Compton, to whose sound I wrote this post3: You are now about to witness the strength of book knowledge1.

Anyway, what of the bloody text itself? It starts very badly, with “Decision scientists4” but we must try not to laugh. The next silliness is not to mention the most recent US presidential campaign, which resulted in the victory of a candidate who has declared climate change a hoax. Trump has said any number of things he doesn’t take seriously. Taking them all seriously is foolish. Why hasn’t the new ‘science of science communication’, achieved more? Because it’s a load of toss, probably. The greatest enemy of effective science communication is the tyranny of the plausible. Oh, bullshit. The greatest enemy is the failure to understand the people you’re trying to talk to.

The first bit that begins to make sense is …it was commonplace to believe that public confusion about climate change was a consequence of ‘bounded rationality’, a term that refers to the tendency to over-rely on forms of reasoning that are rapid, intuitive, and emotional. But that account turned out to be untrue. On the contrary, the members of the public most polarized on climate change (and other controversial issues) are the ones most proficient in the dispositions and skills essential to comprehend scientific evidence. Individuals endowed with these critical reasoning skills, experiments suggest, are not using them to form beliefs that are true. Rather they are using them to persist in beliefs that express their membership in and loyalty to opposing cultural groups, a dynamic referred to as cultural cognition. That’s a reasonable statement, though I’m not sure it is due to “decision scientists”, and it gets no points for novelty.

Unfortunately, that seems to be it. It’s a bit thin, but it gets them a Nature citation, so I guess that’s a win for K+C.

Notes

1. And don’t forget Joan Crawford.

2. Via Forbes, the surprisingly interesting quote “If you delegate tasks, you will raise up doers. If you delegate authority, you will raise up leaders”.

3. Which post is hardly a paragon of complex reasoning, but it did take me a while, so I listened through several repeats. Try it. You don’t get the full effect until about the 6th time round.

4. I probably shouldn’t have mocked “decision scientists”, because wiki assures me that decision theory is a respectable thing. I know little about it.

Taking Property Rights Seriously: The Case of Climate Change

Dscn3451-golden-adler Via a VV comment at ATTP I discover How a professional climate change denier discovered the lies and decided to fight for really long headlines which is fair enough, but via that I discover the far more interesting Taking Property Rights Seriously: The Case of Climate Change by Jonathan H. Adler1, a friend of said reformed denier.

This is interesting for two reasons: the arguments it puts forwards, and FME4 itself. Here’s its abstract:

The dominant approach to environmental policy endorsed by conservative and libertarian policy thinkers, so-called “free market environmentalism” (FME), is grounded in the recognition and protection of property rights in environmental resources. Despite this normative commitment to property rights, most self-described advocates of FME adopt a utilitarian, welfare-maximization, approach to climate change policy, arguing that the costs of mitigation measures could outweigh the costs of climate change itself. Yet even if anthropogenic climate change is decidedly less than catastrophic – indeed, even if it net beneficial to the globe as whole – human-induced climate change is likely to contribute to environmental changes that violate traditional conceptions of property rights… It may well be that aggregate human welfare would be maximized in a warmer, wealthier world, or that the gains from climate change will offset environmental losses. Such claims, even if demonstrated, would not address the normative concern that the consequences of anthropogenic global warming would infringe upon the rights of people in less-developed nations. A true FME approach to climate change policy should be grounded in a normative commitment to property rights. As a consequence, this paper suggests a complete rethinking of the conventional conservative and libertarian approach to climate change.

The use of property rights is probably not going to be favourably received on the “left”, but that doesn’t matter, because for the moment we’re discussing an argument to be made to the “right”. We being by reminding ourselves of an old court case:

As understood by FME proponents, common law principles prohibit the forcible imposition of pollution or other harms onto the persons or property of others, even if such a forced exchange of rights would be net beneficial. For example, in one famous case from New York, the state’s highest court upheld an injunction shutting down a $1 million pulp mill employing several hundred workers in order to protect the riparian rights of a single farmer. “Although the damage to the plaintiff may be slight compared with the defendant’s expense of abating the condition,” the court held, “that is not a good reason for refusing the injunction.” Such a ruling, the court explained, “would deprive the poor litigant of his little property by giving it to those already rich.”

The application to the case of GW is obvious: just because the world overall might gain from burning lots of nice fossil fuels, living in nice warm houses, and whizzing around in cars and planes, doesn’t mean that individual harm (perhaps, stretching things slightly, harm-in-the-future; or maybe you just discount) is permissible, regardless of whether the net effect – if that could even be calculated – is positive or not.

This represents a completely different approach to the usual one where, a-la-Tol-etc, we compute a global damage function, with all it’s attendant problems. Before stopping to think of some of the problems, let’s extend and simplify this slightly, as Adler does, and split the world into those who emit lots of CO2 and gain from it: call them W. And those who emit less and will lose overall: call them T (this is a gross simplification for the sake of illustration of the usual assertion that those who emit least CO2, are poor, and will probably suffer most damage). We now imagine a global court in which T sue W for (a) damages and (b) injunctive relief, the latter meaning “you must stop emitting CO2”. If we look to the simple example of our riparian farmer and his enemy the pulp mill, we might expect them to get both. But, no. At least according to Adler; on the “clean hands” principle, T (even though emitting less CO2 than W), cannot claim to be emitting little or none, and so aren’t entitled to ask W to stop. Instead, they just get (a), viz damages2.

I should now consider some of the obvious problems with this approach, which even Adler admits is only a thought experiment. Firstly, no global court exists. Second, it is not possible to specify damage with precision, even assuming the most simple form of change he considers, sea level rise3. Third, assuming a simplifying aggregation into just two blocks is implausible. Some of these problems might in principle be resolved, some seem insurmountable. But that doesn’t necessarily matter. The point is not to setup such a system: recall that we’re only talking to the “right” here who believe in strong property rights. Those who believe in utilitarianism might not even accept the principle. But for those who do claim to believe in FME, it provides a philosophical underpinning for wealth xfer to those who would lose under GW5.

Refs

* These conservatives want to convince you that climate change is real

Notes

1. Not being familiar with it, I poked around for discussion of it. I found a ref to it at Climate Etc. but as you’d expect there’s little of interest there.

2. OIANAL. If you want all the right words used in the proper order, read Adler’s original.

3. See-also Impacts – IX – Sea Level 4 – Sinking Megacities May 2, 2017 by scienceofdoom.

4. Also known as “Fuck My Environment”, by analogy with FML.

5. It is, obviously, incomplete. The less thinking property rights folk, I suspect, won’t want to discuss damages, because they’ll just say “let the courts sort it out”, and will regard the absence of courts as making the entire idea null.

Economist: Farewell to the Arctic

20170429_fbm967 Economist watch: Farewell to the Arctic is one of the headlines on the front cover of the April 29th edition, and The Arctic as it is known today is almost certainly gone is one of the leaders. Which is sort-of nice, to see it so prominently and starkly.

THOSE who doubt the power of human beings to change Earth’s climate should look to the Arctic, and shiver. There is no need to pore over records of temperatures and atmospheric carbon-dioxide concentrations. The process is starkly visible in the shrinkage of the ice that covers the Arctic ocean. In the past 30 years, the minimum coverage of summer ice has fallen by half; its volume has fallen by three-quarters. On current trends, the Arctic ocean will be largely ice-free in summer by 2040.

The pic is nicked from yet another article, The decline of Arctic sea ice. In which I find

OVER the past three decades the area of sea ice in the Arctic has fallen by more than half and its volume has plummeted by three-quarters. So says a report “Snow, Water, Ice, Permafrost in the Arctic” (SWIPA), produced under the auspices of the Arctic Council, a scientific-policy club for the eight countries with territory in the Arctic Circle, as well as observers including China and India. SWIPA estimates that the Arctic will be free of sea ice in the summer by 2040. Scientists previously suggested this would not occur until 2070.

You just knew I was going to quibble that 2040, didn’t you? I think we need to look at www.amap.no/swipa2017. When I first checked an hour or two ago it appeared to be f*ck*d so here’s an archive since it’s now working. Who are these people and why have I never heard of them? Wiki hasn’t either, and the urban dictionary is at best a rough guide. I guess we want the SPM from which:

The Snow, Water, Ice and Permafrost in the Arctic (SWIPA) assessment is a periodic update to the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment, published in 2005 by the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP), the Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF), and the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC). SWIPA focuses on changes to the Arctic cryosphere (the portion of Arctic land and water that is seasonally or perennially frozen), and the implications of those changes. The first SWIPA assessment was conducted between 2008 and 2010, and was published in 2011.

Aanyway, unlike the IPCC SPM’s the SWIPA SPM doesn’t reference it’s statements back to where they come from, so it’s no use to me. Oh, but The results of the SWIPA assessment are presented in reports, targetting different audiences. The results of the 2017 SWIPA assessment are currently available in a Summary for Policy-Makers and series of Fact Sheets. The detailed technical background that is the basis for the other reports will be availble [sic] in the summaer [sic] of 2017. That’s just a touch disappointing, and I’m not referring to their inability to speak English, which I’ll forgive since I can’t manage a word of Norge. The fact sheets are empty.

Well, without something to back up the 2040 claim you can colour me unconvinced for the while.

Refs

* Hammering the Trend – Tamino.