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Before the deluge

Last night climatologist Gareth Jones tweeted that there had been two dozen papers on the pause this year. In response, I wondered how many would have been published if David Whitehouse hadn't have written his groundbreaking report on the subject. This prompted Doug McNeall to comment "About two dozen", a sentiment that was endorsed by Gavin Schmidt.

It's always nice to be challenged, so I thought I'd look into this a bit. Take a look at Google Trends:

If you look at Whitehouse's report, he surveys the literature as well as public perceptions of the pause up to that point. Mainstream climatology was still amazingly reticent on the subject. The Met Office was showing decadal averages up to the 2000s so as to hide the pause; their Chief Executive of the time was telling the public as late as October 2012 that global warming was proceeding exactly as expected. Yet a month later the Met Office referred obliquely to warming having slowed down, suggesting this might be something to do with El Nino.

But what is really interesting is that Whitehouse really doesn't seem to have identified many papers discussing the pause. Yet this was six years after Bob Carter had first been excoriated for suggesting that surface temperatures might have stopped going up.

Has Whitehouse missed some major publications on the subject? Perhaps so. Maybe Doug and Gavin can point us to the dozens of papers that were overlooked.

[I initially said that Whitehouse hadn't identified any papers on the pause. This wasn't correct]

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Reader Comments (52)

Colour me cynical but I suspect quite a few of these new releases are driven by the authors trying to re-position themselves ahead of the demise of the CAGW scare.

Aug 25, 2014 at 2:19 PM | Registered Commentermikeh

Sandy S,

It has been some time since i last served on a sub, but as I recall, the gradiants you refer to, we called them thermals, work both ways. So while a submarine can make use of them in avoiding detection, they also impact the sub's ability to track a contact. This is one of the reasons the OOD always makes a visual sweep whenever a boat comes to periscope depth. Looking for "dark shadows or shapes". My boat managed to come up under a super tanker it didn't know was there one night, tearing approximately a 85 ft long hole in the bottom of the tanker. I don't believe the tanker was ever aware of the collision.

The advantage still lies with the sub, as it usually has already detected and is tracking any contact within range of it's (passive) sensors, while surface contacts normally haven't a clue as to the location of a submarine, unless it wants them to know.

Aug 25, 2014 at 9:11 PM | Unregistered Commentertimg56

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