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« A right royal showdown | Main | Red tape as a weapon »
Wednesday
Nov272013

One extreme to another

Photo: B Mills under CCMadhav Khandekar's report on extreme weather has just been published by GWPF. There is much to entertain BH readers, including this:

The reality of climate change, as we shall discuss below, is that there have been increasing cold weather extremes in recent years, which have been totally ignored by the IPCC and its adherents. Chapter 2 of the IPCC WGI (AR5) entitled: ‘Observations: atmosphere and surface’, makes no mention of cold weather extremes of recent years. There have, however, been news reports of hundreds of deaths due to extreme cold weather in central and eastern Europe, northern India and parts of South America in the last six years.

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Reader Comments (54)

A welcome report.
Arguments that warming can in some situations cause extreme cold events are plausible, at least to reasonably intelligent non-scientists of whom I consider myself to be one, since we know that climate is chaotic and to all appearances illogical. On the other hand when we find that the IPCC is making a point, apparently, of deliberately ignoring these events we have to ask why they would do that unless they have no explanation for them.
Or are we still in the land of "Warm=Climate; Cold=Weather"? Not what I call 'science'.

Nov 27, 2013 at 2:03 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Kudos to Andrew Monford for his editing of the report. According to the author. Bit of an unfair advantage in selecting the juicy bits but there we go. :)

Nov 27, 2013 at 2:09 PM | Registered CommenterRichard Drake

Using the phrase 'climate change' is a VERY strong indication of playing for the other side while pretending to oppose their agenda.

Nov 27, 2013 at 2:22 PM | Unregistered CommentereSmiff

This is tragic news that I hope entertains nobody. That so many people should be dying because of governmental bias regarding climate reality is not the stuff smiles are made of. There should be calls for accountability and heads on poles. It is long past time that climate realists with a healthy dose of skepticism and scientific rigor put handed the reins. The deadly incompetence of the current cult is criminal.

Nov 27, 2013 at 2:29 PM | Unregistered Commenterdp

They can say that cold weather is caused by climate change and they have.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/expect-more-extreme-winters-thanks-to-global-warming-say-scientists-2168418.html

There is only one proposition that stands or fails . Namely that human originated greenhouses gases are heating the atmosphere to a dangerous extent and that requires their reduction by political action.

Nov 27, 2013 at 2:49 PM | Unregistered CommentereSmiff

The IPCC does not provide any physical rationale for the alleged increased incidence
of these extreme weather events, but a simple (perhaps deceptively so) explanation
is sometimes given by the IPCC and its supporters: a warmer climate will hold more
atmospheric moisture and this can lead to enhanced thunderstorms and/or rainstorms
in some areas while producing dryer areas and hot weather elsewhere. This simple
statement has now been morphed into a hypothesis that 'a warmer future climate will
lead to increased extreme weather events in future'.

They make it up as they go along. And the True Believers accept the latest fabrication as scientific fact, confirmed by theory and observation.

Nov 27, 2013 at 2:58 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

Off topic but of interest, especially the MSM takes an interest.
A very interesting article on No TrickZone, about the Austrian Weather Service admtting that Models are not reflecting reality.
see
http://notrickszone.com/2013/11/27/staggering-concessions-by-austrias-national-weather-service-natural-factors-substantial-models-inadequate/

Nov 27, 2013 at 3:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterA C Osborn

Interesting observations and sadly this report does not quote the work of the late Professor Marcel Leroux who figured out this a while ago...

Nov 27, 2013 at 3:53 PM | Unregistered CommenterTomRude

In the same way that the solution to cheap money was cheap money it may be that the solution to global warming / local freezing is ever-cheaper fossil fuels.

Nov 27, 2013 at 4:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka

That so many people should be dying because of governmental bias regarding climate reality is not the stuff smiles are made of.
dp
Too right. It was three years ago come December that one of my first blog posts majored on the theme of the old and the poor dying in increasing numbers because they could either "heat or eat" but not both and commented that it was doubtful that any of those in a position to make a difference or who were indeed responsible for the situation understood the problem or even really cared very much.
Nobody who has had to deal with people in that situation find anything to smile at, I can assure you.

Nov 27, 2013 at 4:52 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Allow climatology a veneer of science and you get scientology.

Follow the money.

QED

Nov 27, 2013 at 5:17 PM | Unregistered Commenterssat

Interesting

The idea reprised by some in earlier comments that warmer can mean colder is just another excuse for getting the earlier forecast wrong. As Mike Jackson says above, a link for such an idea is possible as the jet stream gets disrupted and blocking patterns become more likely (leading to winter cold anti-cyclones).

BUT if they now think that this is a genuine mechanism, I see three problems with that -

1. The models, that are settled science, completely failed to predict this - in fact it's worse than that, they predicted the opposite. Perhaps they got a sign wrong or divided by zero somewhere??

2. As this piece over at NoTricksZone points out today the winter cooling is widespread in the Northern Hemisphere (not just Europe) over recent years, and record cold has also made it to the Andes with harsh consequences for the peoples there. You would have to be really gullible to believe that it is all due to Global Warming.

http://notrickszone.com/2013/11/27/staggering-concessions-by-austrias-national-weather-service-natural-factors-substantial-models-inadequate/

The GWPF report makes the same point about how the IPCC is ignoring cold events. This negligence is killing people, and not just in the third world as we know.

3. At the almost trivial level a similar distribution of Arctic sea ice caused an average UK spring one year, followed by a very cold one the next. Now the sea ice is increasing again, does that mean we will back to mild winters? - who knows because Climate Scientists have no idea at all.

I see that Canada is well represented in the GWPF's excellent report. Empiricism trumps theory every time.

Interestingly, even though weather is not climate (unless a warmist says so) - Ottawa had it coldest 25th November for 80 years and substantial snowfall.

Nov 27, 2013 at 7:05 PM | Registered Commenterretireddave

FoE, Greenpeace, IPCC, Baroness Worthington, Ed Davey, Ed Millibrain all have blood on their hands.
Let no one forget this.

[Edited. Raise the tone please]

Nov 27, 2013 at 7:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Keiller

By the way - it really is worse than we thought.

Why the hell should I be surprised.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LM1kh2AcKfE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_hcz0NwtU7Q

AMAZING

Nov 27, 2013 at 7:15 PM | Registered Commenterretireddave

Bishop, I don't understand what you or the author are trying to say with that, "The reality of climate change, as we shall discuss below, is that there have been increasing cold weather extremes in recent years, ...". Is it that climate change has caused the increase in cold weather extremes? Is it that an increase in cold extremes is the only "reality of climate change" - ie, that nothing else worth noting has occurred? Very odd.

Nov 27, 2013 at 7:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterChandra

@Chandra
Telling how you omit the "which have been totally ignored by the IPCC and its adherents" part....

Nov 27, 2013 at 7:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterWijnand

Climate Change is the norm and it is high time we made war on data that is less than 150 years old...especially graphs from 1979 onwards. We have to look at Holocene's going back hundreds of thousands of years and compare temperatures. We also need to examine CO2's role in the general scheme of things.
We are allowing the AGW mob to set the debate by always being reactive whilst they make excuses, change the subject and come out fighting.
Remember the change from AGW to Climate Change was deliberate....to plant the notion that all weather events are linked to CO2.
We are too passive...not enough historical empirical data is used to knock them down.
For instance the graphs of the current Holocene well and truly put things into perspective....as does the daily satellite data of global sea ice.

Nov 27, 2013 at 8:30 PM | Unregistered Commenterjames griffin

Retired Dave (Nov 27, 2013 at 7:15 PM ):

"…not dissuading us from our current global goal…” – South African delegate
A rather chilling statement, whichever way it is viewed – from a point of ignorance, it displays utter dismissal of facts; from knowledge, it displays more sinister motives.

Nov 27, 2013 at 8:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

@retireddave

Amazing yes but surprising, no.

Cold is the new hot.

Nov 27, 2013 at 8:34 PM | Unregistered Commenterssat

Ssat: yes, particularly when you consider the words of the Cook Islands delegate (to paraphrase): “It is so cold here because of global warming. Yes, global warming causes cold weather.” Hmmm. When the argument relies upon logic that contains no logic, then it is not possible to debate; it is not unlike that of an anorexic – “I might be an emaciated wreck, but that is because I am too fat!”

Nov 27, 2013 at 8:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

This report has come in very useful for me as I am in ongoing FOI correspondence with West Sussex County Council over claims on their website and newsletters that "due to climate change the risk of flooding WILL increase" (my bold). They are basing this bold assertion on the UKCP09 projections despite the relevant website specifically stating that they are PROJECTIONS (possible), not PREDICTIONS (probable).

Nov 27, 2013 at 9:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterBob MacLean

@ Bob MacLean - I am pretty sure Wiltshire's website says the same thing. They also showed "evidence" of increased flooding by referencing a couple of newspaper reports when a river flooded.
Memo to self to check to check this again.

Nov 27, 2013 at 11:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterGrumpy

Wiltshire - that was at the same time as they were predicting hotter, drier summers and warmer, wetter winters. Having been caught on the hop a couple of years ago, the gritters are all ready and waiting for wintry weather. The government now apparently controls all the grit/salt councils are allowed to have and it is all weighed out and weighed back in again with whizzy computers that calculate how much is used, when and where.

I hope the airports are also prepared............

Nov 27, 2013 at 11:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterGrumpy

Grumpy (Nov 27, 2013 at 11:20 PM):

Memo to self to check to check this again.

Is that what is known as double-checking?

Nov 27, 2013 at 11:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

Think of climate variability as a pendulum.

Pump extra energy into a pendulum and it swings further , in both directions.

Nov 28, 2013 at 12:35 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

In our current situation the pendulum is Rossby waves in jetstreams. These are increasing in amplitude and moving more slowly. The result is that a northerly jetstream can bring extended warm periods to high latitudes, or a southerly jetstream extended cold periods to lower latitudes.

The result is an increase in variability, hot and cold.

Nov 28, 2013 at 12:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

Nov 28, 2013 at 12:35 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man "Pump extra energy into a pendulum and it swings further , in both directions."
Logically absurd comparison.
In order for the climate to cool, one has to have LESS extra energy entering the system.
I am unaware of any research that shows global warming will produce extreme events that are either more frequent than before or more cold than before. Are you aware of any research (as opposed to guesses)?
Is it possible that some people note events as 'colder than average' because the 'average' has shifted up with the natural warming that has been going on for a century? That is, a temperature of 5 deg C might be 9 deg below average in year 1910, but would be 10 deg below average by 2010, not because it is absolutely any colder, just colder relative to a moving mean. And that moving mean is still under suspicion of convenient adjustment.

Nov 28, 2013 at 1:37 AM | Unregistered CommenterGeoff Sherrington

Entropic man
Natural variation?

Nov 28, 2013 at 7:58 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Entropic man...

Think of a row of a thousand (10,000? 100,000?) pendulums all of different mass, linked together by strings of varying length and elasticity (lengths and elasticity that have, in the most part, to be empirically measured). With energy inputs happening at various places along the row. I will give you benefit that we know the strength and position of such inputs (in reality we don't.)

Then ******* predict the path (against amplitude and time) of every pendulum. In fact try predicting the path of one pendulum.

Welcome to a chaotic system.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterJiminy Cricket

Radical Rodent

Double-checking: confirmation bias?

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:15 AM | Unregistered CommenterGrumpy

Many people wrongly think that the IPCC is an independent UN body that gives governments objective scientific advice on climate matters.

It was set up specifically to brief governments on the dangerous impact of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions. However, its deputy head admitted that AGW was a vehicle for the redistribution of wealth from the rich countries to the developing ones. The purpose of all the climate conferences is to get governments to commit to this, either on a voluntary basis or through some global compulsory scheme.

It is a political body.

Nov 28, 2013 at 8:36 AM | Unregistered CommenterSchrodinger's Cat

AlecM
Over the years you have posted many comments like the one above. I am interested in your view but I always find your brief comments more cryptic than illuminating. As we are probably near the end of comments to this post maybe this is a good place to lay out your thinking in more detail so that others, like me. can try to understand your argument.

Nov 28, 2013 at 9:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterSchrodinger's Cat

I think the Bish has specifically prohibited Alec from doing that. There was a period where every thread, no matter what it was about, was full of lengthy explanations of his theories, and he was asked to desist. But he keeps sneaking in little digs. :)

Nov 28, 2013 at 9:35 AM | Registered Commenterjohanna

Johanna

Indeed. He is going the way of Zed.

Nov 28, 2013 at 9:44 AM | Registered CommenterBishop Hill

The argument appears to be:

Global warming causes more weather. The more weather we have, the more likely we are to have heat waves, freezing spells, floods, droughts ... you name it.

Nov 28, 2013 at 10:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoy

I think the Bish has specifically prohibited Alec from doing that. There was a period where every thread, no matter what it was about, was full of lengthy explanations of his theories, and he was asked to desist. But he keeps sneaking in little digs. :)
Nov 28, 2013 at 9:35 AM | Registered Commenterjohanna

See Bish comment above. Is he (was he?) My Dog Has Got no Nose who also interminably posted stuff on radiation physics that sounded as if it might make sense if explained a little deeper but could never actually be pinned down to what he was really saying. If so, he'll probably be back in another reincarnation - a bit like Dr Who.

Nov 28, 2013 at 10:34 AM | Registered CommenterMartin A

http://iceagenow.info/

He was right all along! And now we have another similar prophet ahead of his time:

http://globalcoolingnewiceageuk.blogspot.co.uk/

Nov 28, 2013 at 10:40 AM | Unregistered Commentermichel

Think of climate variability as a pendulum.

Pump extra energy into a pendulum and it swings further , in both directions.
Nov 28, 2013 at 12:35 AM Entropic man

Think of climate variability as a monkey on a stick.

You'll be no further from reality than EM.

Nov 28, 2013 at 10:41 AM | Registered CommenterMartin A

I rather like Jiminy Cricket’s (Nov 28, 2013 at 8:03 AM) multiple, linked pendulums (pendula?) analogy – it is probably the closest to the real situation of the chaos of the atmosphere that I have seen. Entropic Man, keep it simple at first, and start with 3; when you can make accurate predictions with 10, come back to us.

Some years ago, I saw a TV programme where someone tried to model the Aghulas Current, off the coast of South Africa. It is one of the more predictable of the currents, yet after 3 days, the model was utterly at odds with reality. Obviously, lessons have not been learned.

Nov 28, 2013 at 11:22 AM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

Martin A, yes, that's him. AlecM, mydoggotnonose, spartacusisfree are all one and the same person. What he doesn't realise is that it is precisely his trolly attitude that makes even the non-scientifically minded people conclude he is a crank. Politically, he is a right-wing crank too, and that probably explains that troll's longevity on BH. He would have been banished from here a long time ago had he not interspersed his scientific theories with regular denunciation of something called Agenda 21 and other imaginary commie conspiracies. Yet, he feels right at home here.

Nov 28, 2013 at 11:50 AM | Unregistered CommentersHx

It strikes me as a case of trying to find trends in the noise. It's difficult to attribute variability to changes in a complex system when you have little understanding of some of the specifics.

EM, Rossby waves may be there but you don't know how they came to be there or how long that behaviour will last. I appreciate it may look like there may be a cause but there's too much uncertainty. The scientific point of view is simply "it's interesting but we don't really know why"

Nov 28, 2013 at 1:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterMicky H Corbett

All these "official" warnings of increasing numbers of extreme weather events have given the insurance companies another stick with which to beat us. My wife has owned a buy-to-let 1st floor maisonette locally for about 15 years. Suddenly the insurance premium has quadrupled because of a perceived flood risk. If the little (say 1.5 metres wide) stream about 100 metres away floods to first floor height having never flooded before we really will be in trouble! The insurance broker she telephoned confirmed that the sudden increases in many premiums follow Environment Agency warnings for specific areas. Chicken Little is starting to cost all of us more and more :-(

Nov 28, 2013 at 4:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterJockdownsouth

All these "official" warnings of increasing numbers of extreme weather events have given the insurance companies another stick with which to beat us. My wife has owned a buy-to-let 1st floor maisonette locally for about 15 years. Suddenly the insurance premium has quadrupled because of a perceived flood risk. If the little (say 1.5 metres wide) stream about 100 metres away floods to first floor height having never flooded before we really will be in trouble! The insurance broker she telephoned confirmed that the sudden increases in many premiums follow Environment Agency warnings for specific areas. Chicken Little is starting to cost all of us more and more :-(

Nov 28, 2013 at 4:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterJockdownsouth

I hope that she is appealing.

Nov 28, 2013 at 4:49 PM | Registered Commenterjohanna

Well, she's always seemed appealing to me johanna! :-)

No point in appealing, because the Environment Agency has "spoken". She got a cheaper quote elsewhere with flood risk excluded (calculated risk bearing in mind it's a first floor property). The insurance company she's with now is actually based locally.

(Apologies for double posting - Bishop Hill site seemed to be playing up.)

Nov 28, 2013 at 5:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterJockdownsouth

Well, she's always seemed appealing to me johanna! :-)

No point in appealing, because the Environment Agency has "spoken". She got a cheaper quote elsewhere with flood risk excluded (calculated risk bearing in mind it's a first floor property). The insurance company she's with now is actually based locally.

(Apologies for double posting - Bishop Hill site seemed to be playing up.)

Nov 28, 2013 at 5:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterJockdownsouth

Obviously, Jock thinks she is or he wouldn't have married her!

Nov 28, 2013 at 6:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

Insurance companies are a good proxy for extreme weather. A jump in their claim payout costs is a rapid indicator that increasing damage is occuring.

http://admin.forsikringogpension.dk/Documents/Klima/Weather%20related%20damage%20in%20the%20Nordic%20countries%20(final).pdf

http://www.hailwatch.com/hailblog/hail-specific/study-hail-damage-claims-on-the-rise/

Nov 29, 2013 at 12:50 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

james griffin, Micky H Corbett

I agree with much of what you both wrote. This should be argued with rapiers of data, rather than clubs of propoganda.It is also much more fun to discuss data and emerging trends with you, and to ignore insults from the ignorant.

The Rossby wave changes are an emerging pattern from the last decade. It is too early to be statistically sure of the trend. It is, however, consistent with the physics.

A large temperature gradient across the Polar Front generates a strong jetstream which tends to smaller Rossby waves. These migrate continuously and generate short-term weather changes.

Decreasing the gradient as Polar temperatures increase would be expected to result in a weaker jetstream with a greater tendency to meander. The waves have a greater latitudinal amplitude and a tendency to become stationary and blocking for extended periods. Anything trapped North of a stationary low latitude wave experiences an elongated cold spell like last Winter's Chinese chill. Anywhere caught on the South side of a high latitude wave gets a warm winter like Alaska's recent experience.

More generally, the null hypothesis that past experience is the best guide is becoming untenable.

The Phillipines normally experienced about nine typhoons a year. Their Met Office reports an increasing trend in intensities. They have had 24 this year, including one of the worst on record. The US would have expected a similar number of hurricanes and got none!

Nov 29, 2013 at 1:18 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

Entropic Man. First of all thanks for the positive tension you created. Without which I wouldn't have had some creative thoughts on chaotic systems. The pendulum system I came up has lots of holes, but as a concept to work on in explaining to people it will help. So thanks for that.

Based on your follow-up comment it also got me thinking about chaotic systems more.

"More generally, the null hypothesis that past experience is the best guide is becoming untenable."

Null hypothesis in a chaotic system? That is a challenge ;) Finding that is like a dog running after its tail.

"The Philippines normally experienced..."

Normally? In a chaotic system? Interesting challenge.

So first two new chaotic states to be used for explanation.

First state...

Middle of the Atlantic sitting on my boat. The Atlantic weather is forecast to be "normal" (that is a in-joke). Bored. I decide to count the direction, frequency and apparent height of waves. Day 1: Normally I get 10 medium height waves followed by 2 big ones. Then 2 little ones.
Day 2: Same
Day 3. Same
Is this "normal"? I get on the radio and tell everyone about my discovery. Normal waves in the Atlantic are mostly medium with a few bigs ones thrown in.
Day 4: out of nowhere comes comes this humongous wave. Almost sinks the boat. The weather had not changed. Nothing had changed. All day mostly medium waves had rolled in. Of course being chaotic the overlapping rhythms of the waves often cancelled each other out. But every so often, without being able to predict when, the waves combine and produce the mothers of all waves.

So what is normal? The medium waves? Or the system in which they operate?

Please do not use the word "normal" in connection with the outcome of a chaotic system.

But I am being fair. So let us extend the analogy with state 2.

Same situation. On my boat. Then we can choose two events. The side of a mountain in Tenerife falls in the water creating a tsunami, or a huge volcanic island off Iceland appears over night.

What effect does it have on the system? On me on my boat?

Are the landslide or the volcano the equivalent of the man putting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere during industrial times?

Well no. Water is not the atmosphere. And we have trusted empirical evidence for the behaviour of water that a kid in a bath could do.

I have work to do, but I just thought the ocean and the tsunami might appeal to CAGW proponents. A chaotic system having a major energy input.

Nov 29, 2013 at 7:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterJiminy Cricket

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