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Skiphil, Paltridge misses the mark with W Eschenbach imho, although full praise for his mentions of Judith Curry and Steve McIntyre. Eschenbach is an autodidact with no relevant formal qualifications, who put a lot of people offside when he gratuitously insulted Ned Nikolov and Karl Zeller, both PhD's, in ad hominem derision of their climate theory on WUWT. Whether their theory proves to be correct or not, no one deserves to be personally vilified in that way.

Eschenbach is a divisive figure in the climate skeptic blogosphere, and someone whom I for one pay no heed to. In this I know I am not alone. When victory is finally achieved in the AGW debate, I doubt very much that he will be awarded a laurel wreath. For a fuller picture of his antics, you might like to check out the several illuminating topics on Tallbloke's Talkshop.

Jun 23, 2012 at 1:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterChris M

@ grumpy 1047. Post-normal science in action!

Jun 23, 2012 at 11:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterGrumpy Old Man

Tomo,

The Taxpayers Alliance looked at the number of Climate Change officers a while back. Have a hunt through their website. It might be interesting to compare their information with the response you receive. Austerity might have produced a reduction in the number of climate change officers who do little more than parrot the outpourings of the Met Office, in particular the local effects - you know, those impacts that are notoriously difficult to predict (unless you are a wholehearted believer). Wiltshire Council officers still spew forth in policy documents about warmer, wetter winters and hotter drier summers, but are altering the phrases a bit towards extreme events such as flooding, evidence of which, I kid you not, has been garnered from local press reports.

Jun 23, 2012 at 10:47 AM | Unregistered CommenterGrumpy

Brilliant post on WUWT

Response from a Dr Brown to Bains paper about Deniers
Jun 23, 2012 at 2:03 AM Dung

Yes - brilliant at many levels. Here is what Dr Robert G Brown of Duke University says about climate models in his response.


This is a hard problem. Not settled science, not well understood, not understood. There are theories and models (and as a theorist, I just love to tell stories) but there aren't any particularly successful theories or models and there is a lot of competition between the stories (none of which agree with or predict the empirical data particularly well, at best agreeing with some gross features but not others). One part of the difficulty is that the Earth is a highly multivariate and chaotic driven/open system with complex nonlinear coupling between all of its many drivers, and with anything but a regular surface. If one tried to actually write "the" partial differential equation for the global climate system, it would be a set of coupled Navier-Stokes equations with unbelievably nasty nonlinear coupling terms — if one can actually include the physics of the water and carbon cycles in the N-S equations at all. It is, quite literally, the most difficult problem in mathematical physics we have ever attempted to solve or understand! Global Climate Models are children's toys in comparison to the actual underlying complexity, especially when (as noted) the major drivers setting the baseline behavior are not well understood or quantitatively available.

The truth of this is revealed in the lack of skill in the GCMs. They utterly failed to predict the last 13 or 14 years of flat to descending global temperatures, for example, although naturally one can go back and tweak parameters and make them fit it now, after the fact. And every year that passes without significant warming should be rigorously lowering the climate sensitivity and projected AGW, making the probability of the "C" increasinginly remote.

Jun 23, 2012 at 8:59 AM | Registered CommenterMartin A

yes I think Dr. Robert G. Brown's article at WUWT is one of the best items I have read, ever, on what it means to be a "skeptic" about CAGW:

Physicist Robert G. Brown shreds use of "denier" label by Bain et al

Robert G. Brown is a theoretical physicist at Duke University.

Jun 23, 2012 at 2:37 AM | Registered CommenterSkiphil

Brilliant post on WUWT

Response from a Dr Brown to Bains paper about Deniers

Jun 23, 2012 at 2:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterDung

From the BBC: "Vestas pulls out of plans for Sheerness wind turbine factory" http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-kent-18550638

"A wind turbine company has pulled out of plans to set up a manufacturing plant in Kent which was to have created about 1,600 jobs.

Vestas, which supplies 40% of the world's offshore turbines, said it would not proceed with the site at Sheerness Dock on the Isle of Sheppey.

The Danish company, which also tests turbines on the Isle of Wight, was granted planning permission last month."

Is this, I wonder, just the beginning of the end for companies like Vestas? Especially when one considers this earlier report from February this year: "The finance chief of Vestas, the world's largest maker of wind turbines, has quit and other directors will not be seeking re-election to the board."

Jun 22, 2012 at 6:58 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

excellent article by Paltridge which deserves wide circulation (wish he had mentioned BH and WUWT, but it's great to see such praise for Steve McIntyre and Willis Eschenbach), which of course reflects so positively upon discussions at BH and WUWT:



"Whatever the reason, it is indeed vastly more difficult to publish results in climate research journals if they run against the tide of politically correct opinion. Which is why most of the sceptic literature on the subject has been forced onto the web, and particularly onto web-logs devoted to the sceptic view of things. Which, in turn, is why the more fanatical of the believers in anthropogenic global warming insist that only peer-reviewed literature should be accepted as an indication of the real state of affairs. They argue that the sceptic web-logs should never be taken seriously by “real” scientists, and certainly should never be quoted. Which is a great pity. Some of the sceptics are extremely productive as far as critical analysis of climate science is concerned. Names like Judith Curry (chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta), Steve McIntyre (a Canadian geologist-statistician) and blogger Willis Eschenbach come to mind. These three in particular provide a balance and maturity in public discussion that puts many players in the global warming movement to shame, and as a consequence their outreach to the scientifically inclined general public is highly effective. Their output, together with that of other sceptics on the web, is fast becoming a practical and stringent substitute for peer review."

Jun 22, 2012 at 5:49 PM | Registered CommenterSkiphil

Mike,

I definitely recommend G. Paltridge's book The Climate Caper

Short but to the point, and he was an insider, so he should know what he's talking about.

Jun 22, 2012 at 3:33 PM | Registered CommenterPatagon

Patagon
Agreed. I especially liked

There are many aspects of the behaviour of the natural climate system and of human society that are unpredictable in principle, let alone in practice.
His subsequent analysis of the reasons why activists behave as they do is one worth remembering.

Jun 22, 2012 at 2:28 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

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