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Thread: New study rocks agw mainstream

  1. #1
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    New study rocks agw mainstream

    This one is going to cause much unease amongst the global warming religionists, especially considering its based on empirical evidence and not flawed climate models:

    "Controversial New Climate Change Data: Is Earth's Capacity To Absorb CO2 Much Greater Than Expected?"

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...1110141842.htm

    Let the games begin ;-)

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post

    Let the games begin ;-)

    This might be the attitude that clearly frustrates some of those who have tried to have substantive discussions/arguments about AGW in the on-going chiller monster horror thread about AGW...the apparent attitude of some deniers that this is all just a game and nothing more than an endless series of "gotchas".

    That said, the article summarized at your link is behind a paywall though the abstract is accessible. I'm no climate scientist and I'm afraid I don't quite understand how atmospheric CO2 continues to increase if the capacity of the land and oceans to absorb it is much greater than previously calculated or not. Nor do I see how this study "rocks" mainstream climate science.

  3. #3
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    Cope,

    The bit about letting the games begin was a joke - sorry you cannot accept it as such.

    More importantly it's telling you focus on that instead of the details of the study.

    By the way, i referenced ScienceDaily which is a free science news service. If you want an account at "Geophysical Research Letters" i suggest you buy one.

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    cope,

    It clearly is going to rock the whole debate as the article quite rightly makes the point:

    "The results run contrary to a significant body of recent research which expects that the capacity of terrestrial ecosystems and the oceans to absorb CO2 should start to diminish as CO2 emissions increase, letting greenhouse gas levels skyrocket. Dr Wolfgang Knorr at the University of Bristol found that in fact the trend in the airborne fraction since 1850 has only been 0.7 1.4% per decade, which is essentially zero."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    Dr Wolfgang Knorr at the University of Bristol found that in fact the trend in the airborne fraction since 1850 has only been 0.7 1.4% per decade, which is essentially zero."
    I'm not sure that this is such a big deal. All they are saying is that amount of CO2 that can be absorbed by the terrestrial ecosystem (other than the atmosphere) is larger than thought.

    That doesn't make any difference to actual (measured) increase in atmospheric CO2 over the last few years. Or the expected effects of that (predicted 150+ years ago).

    If this one study is confirmed by further research, then it may mean future CO2 rises are slightly slower than currently expected.

    global warming religionists
    I think the fact that you have jumped with such glee on a single study that appears to confirm your own bias makes this comment somewhat ironic.

    Oji

    [p.s. I am not an expert on global warming or climate science, and therefore don't have strong opinions one way or the other on this subject]

  6. #6
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    Henna,

    "I'm not sure that this is such a big deal. All they are saying is that amount of CO2 that can be absorbed by the terrestrial ecosystem (other than the atmosphere) is larger than thought.

    That doesn't make any difference to actual (measured) increase in atmospheric CO2 over the last few years. Or the expected effects of that (predicted 150+ years ago)"

    I'm afraid it does make a very large difference. Most global warming climate models make an assumption about how much carbon the biosphere can soak up or dissolve.

    If you read the study objectively it clearly states those assumptions are wrong - at least according to the results of this study.

    As a chaotic open ended system, future climate predictions which have got the intial conditions wrong (as is the case with these carbon soak-up results) will be wrong from the start.

    This study is a big deal and you'll see that as the news breaks in the mainstream media.

  7. #7
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    Henna,

    "[p.s. I am not an expert on global warming or climate science, and therefore don't have strong opinions one way or the other on this subject]"

    I laughed a lot at that :-)

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    You make the incorrect assumption that evidence for anthropogenic global warming only comes from one line of evidence and that therefore it only takes one "gotcha!" to invalidate the whole thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IsaacKuo View Post
    You make the incorrect assumption that evidence for anthropogenic global warming only comes from one line of evidence and that therefore it only takes one "gotcha!" to invalidate the whole thing.
    That's the same fallacy that many creationists and Moon Hoax believers fall into.

    I'm not sure that CO2 levels have to skyrocket to impact climate. Clearly they are and have been increasing and clearly the Earth is warming up. I guess the question raised in the paper is how fast it will warm up and how much time we have to do something about it.

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    IsaacKuo,

    I'm afraid you are plain wrong. Climate like the weather is an open ended non linear system, meaning even slight changes in the assumed initial conditions can make a very large difference to end result - in our case climate predictions.

    To argue that this is a small detail and will be inconsequential to future climate is ..well just silly. I suggest you read a book on chaos theory.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    Cope,

    The bit about letting the games begin was a joke - sorry you cannot accept it as such.
    Well, I just can't seem to figure out if you are interested in fact-based, scientific debate or just placing whoopie cushions on our chairs when we are out of the room.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    By the way, i referenced ScienceDaily which is a free science news service. If you want an account at "Geophysical Research Letters" i suggest you buy one.
    Yes, thank you, I clicked on the ScienceDaily link you kindly supplied and then clicked on their link to the abstract of the paper. Clicking on the link within GRL to the full article informed me that I needed to pay to have access. As I currently am subscribing to more journals than I can actually keep up with, I will, indeed, pass on paying the 9$ for access.

    However, going back over the abstract and your subsequent posts, I think I see what the argument is. The proposition is that climate models assume future carbon absorption by the oceans and land masses to be considerably less than the new study indicates. Therefore, in the future, carbon concentration in the atmosphere will decrease its rate of increase and maybe even level out. Am I correct?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    I'm afraid it does make a very large difference. Most global warming climate models make an assumption about how much carbon the biosphere can soak up or dissolve.
    I agree it will have an impact on models and predictions. I said it doesn't make any difference to where we are now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    I laughed a lot at that :-)
    Good. Although I'm not sure why.

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    cope,

    "However, going back over the abstract and your subsequent posts, I think I see what the argument is. The proposition is that climate models assume future carbon absorption by the oceans and land masses to be considerably less than the new study indicates. Therefore, in the future, carbon concentration in the atmosphere will decrease its rate of increase and maybe even level out. Am I correct?"

    Its not a proposition. It's the results of a scientific study which has only used empirical data. So they've made no assumptions unlike the climate models purporting to prove catastrophic climate change.

    No, it says nothing about a decrease in atmospheric carbon, it just states that the earth can soak up more a lot more carbon than was previously thought. Hence models which do not take this new finding into account will likely be wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Henna Oji-san View Post
    I agree it will have an impact on models and predictions. I said it doesn't make any difference to where we are now.
    What does that mean? You've lost me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    No, it says nothing about a decrease in atmospheric carbon, it just states that the earth can soak up more a lot more carbon than was previously thought. Hence models which do not take this new finding into account will likely be wrong.
    I hope you are right and things are not as bad as some predict. However, there are so many other approximations (I guess you would prefer to call them errors) in the models, I wonder how much difference this factor makes.

    And (to give you another laugh, apparently) I genuinely do wonder about that because I have no idea what the outcome is likely to be.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    What does that mean? You've lost me.
    I said: That doesn't make any difference to actual (measured) increase in atmospheric CO2 over the last few years. Or the expected effects of that (predicted 150+ years ago)

    Which was about the current levels of CO2.

    To which you replied: I'm afraid it does make a very large difference. Most global warming climate models make an assumption about how much carbon the biosphere can soak up or dissolve

    Which is about modelling and predictions.

    So, it doesn't make any difference to the current situation (amount of CO2, degree of warming, etc) but, yes, obviously (duh) it will be a factor to take into account in models. (If it is confirmed by further studies.)

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    Again, you either have an oversimplified view of AGW science our you're purposefully deceiving yourself/others.

    Some prediction models assume diminishing CO2 absorption capacity. Others do not. The ones which we're using to dictate policy currently already assume there's no diminishing CO2 absorption capacity.

    So, there's no "rocking" of the scientific world here, as you claim.

    The fact is, there's a wide variety of assumptions used in climate change models. They don't all rely upon the same set of assumptions, as you seem to think. The way science is done is to consider a wide range of possibilities and possible models.

    Where I live, hurricane prediction is a familiar example of this. We all are familiar with the different prediction lines representing different models using different assumptions. Just because all of the models don't agree exactly doesn't mean we just ignore them all. Where I live, we use the data anyway even though we know it isn't perfect.

  19. #19
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    Henna,

    "I hope you are right and things are not as bad as some predict. However, there are so many other approximations (I guess you would prefer to call them errors) in the models, I wonder how much difference this factor makes.

    And (to give you another laugh, apparently) I genuinely do wonder about that because I have no idea what the outcome is likely to be."

    The point is that our future climate is far more unpredictable than global warming proponents would have you believe.

    The only thing for certain is the uncertainty.

  20. #20
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    IsaacKuo,

    "Again, you either have an oversimplified view of AGW science our you're purposefully deceiving yourself/others.

    Some prediction models assume diminishing CO2 absorption capacity. Others do not. The ones which we're using to dictate policy currently already assume there's no diminishing CO2 absorption capacity."

    Which models include the the new findings about the earth's greater than expected ability to soak up carbon? Please do enlighten me.

    And its really ironic you are accusing me of deceipt? Thats an ad hominem by the way, and i won't warn you again. You may not agree with my views about the importance of this study but you have no right to accuse me of deceipt.

    But if i were willfully deceiving people (as you put it) then the deception by global warming alarmists about the accuracy of their climate models is an even greater deception, based on the findings of this study.

    You cant have it both ways.

    "So, there's no "rocking" of the scientific world here, as you claim."

    The article itself commenting on the study says: ""The results run contrary to a significant body of recent research which expects that the capacity of terrestrial ecosystems and the oceans to absorb CO2 should start to diminish as CO2 emissions increase, letting greenhouse gas levels skyrocket. Dr Wolfgang Knorr at the University of Bristol found that in fact the trend in the airborne fraction since 1850 has only been 0.7 1.4% per decade, which is essentially zero."

    Use whatever semantics you please but the study is a serious blow to the majority of current climate models predicting catastrophic warming.

    At the very least those models will have to be re-calculated with the new finding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    The point is that our future climate is far more unpredictable than global warming proponents would have you believe.
    I don't think anyone is "hiding" the complexity or variability of the models. I have read and heard some discussions about just this. There was a particularly interesting discussion on the BBC's More or Less program a while ago about the difference between a new model that predicts a period of cooling and the Met Office model which doesn't. They also touched on the difference between climate modelling and weather forecasting which I thought was interesting (well, it was news to me).

    The only thing for certain is the uncertainty.
    Does that mean we shouldn't make best efforts to understand, predict and plan for what might happen?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    Some prediction models assume diminishing CO2 absorption capacity. Others do not. The ones which we're using to dictate policy currently already assume there's no diminishing CO2 absorption capacity."

    Which models include the the new findings about the earth's greater than expected ability to soak up carbon? Please do enlighten me.
    All of the models which already assume that there's no diminishing CO2 absorption capacity.
    And its really ironic you are accusing me of deceipt? Thats an ad hominem by the way, and i won't warn you again. You may not agree with my views about the importance of this study but you have no right to accuse me of deceipt.
    The first possibility I gave was that you merely had an oversimplified view.
    But if i were willfully deceiving people (as you put it) then the deception by global warming alarmists about the accuracy of their climate models is an even greater deception, based on the findings of this study.
    That's the weakest excuse of all--the excuse that someone else is being bad in some way, so there!

    It's not an excuse at all. The poor behavior of someone else simply isn't any excuse for one's own poor behavior.
    The article itself commenting on the study says: ""The results run contrary to a significant body of recent research which expects that the capacity of terrestrial ecosystems and the oceans to absorb CO2 should start to diminish as CO2 emissions increase, letting greenhouse gas levels skyrocket.
    Yes, a significant body. That means a lot of models assume that the capacity to absorb CO2 will diminish. It does not mean that all of the models make such assumptions.

    You're making a claim about "mainstream" AGW science. The "mainstream" includes models which assume CO2 absorption capacity will not diminish as well as including models which assume CO2 absorption capacity will diminish.
    Use whatever semantics you please but the study is a serious blow to the majority of current climate models predicting catastrophic warming.

    At the very least those models will have to be re-calculated with the new finding.
    Which is simply not a big deal to AGW science. We had to re-calculate before when findings on global dimming effects were discovered.

    This sort of thing happens in ALL scientific fields of study. If science didn't constantly make new discoveries improving our knowledge, then we wouldn't bother doing it.

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    Henna,

    "Does that mean we shouldn't make best efforts to understand, predict and plan for what might happen?"

    Not at all. And in fact i think we should lower our carbon footprint indirectly by becoming far more energy efficient. However, we have governments around the world piling on so-called carbon taxes like they are going out of style and as this study shows; the jury is still well and truly out on a host of issues surrounding how well we understand climate change.

    The best thing about this study from my view point is that the authors were brave enough to publish it.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    However, we have governments around the world piling on so-called carbon taxes like they are going out of style and as this study shows; the jury is still well and truly out on a host of issues surrounding how well we understand climate change.
    Since we have already been using the assumptions confirmed by this study to inform our climate change policy, what's the problem?
    The best thing about this study from my view point is that the authors were brave enough to publish it.
    They were brave enough to confirm a widely used set of assumptions?

    Scientists are not some high priesthood of smarty-pants who pat each other on the back for being so smart that they know everything. Scientists are investigators drawn to the areas of uncertainty like moths to the flame. If a scientist thought he knew everything, he'd be out of a job.

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    IsaacKuo,

    "All of the models which already assume that there's no diminishing CO2 absorption capacity."

    Such as which ones? You'll need to elaborate.

    "The first possibility I gave was that you merely had an oversimplified view."

    No. You accused me of deception. Plain and simple.

    "That's the weakest excuse of all--the excuse that someone else is being bad in some way, so there!It's not an excuse at all. The poor behavior of someone else simply isn't any excuse for one's own poor behavior."

    No you have missed the point. That being you accused me of deception based on my interpretation of this study. However you appear to accept models from global warming alarmists at face value without question. And in fact you have suggested that when there is evidence which challenges those extreme climate predictions it must be founded on a deception.

    "Yes, a significant body. That means a lot of models assume that the capacity to absorb CO2 will diminish. It does not mean that all of the models make such assumptions."

    No-one said all models, but you dont seem unable to mention one model which has taken into account the results of this new study. Why not? I've asked you several times now.

    "Which is simply not a big deal to AGW science. We had to re-calculate before when findings on global dimming effects were discovered."

    It has a material impact on each and every model which has not taken into account the findings of this study. You cannot understand the "science" at all if you cannot accept that fact.

    Do you know anything at all about chaos theory? Yes , no, a little?

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    IsaacKuo,

    "Since we have already been using the assumptions confirmed by this study to inform our climate change policy, what's the problem?"

    The study was just published within the last 48 hours. Are you joking or something? :-)

    I'm trying to take you serriously, i really am.

  27. #27
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    IsaacKuo,

    You know i always wondered why people buy the global warming hype hook line and sinker. You've cleared up the mystery for me :-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    At the very least those models will have to be re-calculated with the new finding.
    I'm still not sure why you think this single factor is so significant (it may be, I have no idea). But, for example, the BBC program I linked to earlier compared two models which (from memory) took completely different approaches to modelling the thermal coupling between ocean and atmosphere - one might have ignored it completely, I don't remember now. From a naive outsider's perspective, this sounds like it could be just as significant as this factor.

    Not surprisingly, the two models came up with quite different results (in the short term, at least).

    - Oji

  29. #29
    Bad science reporting gets under my skin:

    the trend in the airborne fraction since 1850 has only been 0.7 1.4% per decade, which is essentially zero.
    No, an iterative x y is 'essentially' x, not z.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetlack View Post
    Dr Wolfgang Knorr at the University of Bristol found that in fact the trend in the airborne fraction since 1850 has only been 0.7 1.4% per decade, which is essentially zero."
    I must have a really bad case of the slows today because I cannot figure out what this means.

    I spent a short time online looking for further information about this study but could only find one other exactly worded report at a different "news" site. Presumably, both reports are press releases.

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