The Global Warming Challenge

Evidence-based forecasting for climate change

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Climate consensus? What climate consensus?

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An oft repeated climate forecasting claim is that 97% of scientists agree that there is a problem of dangerous manmade global warming and that human emissions of carbon dioxide must be drastically curtailed in order to avoid disastrous consequences. If that claim sounds unlikely to you, as well as being irrelevant, you are right. Professor Ross McKitrick—a scientific Toto to the climate-alarmist Wizard of Oz—dissects the claim and exposes its lack of substance in his May 11 article in the Financial Post titled, “The con in consensus“.

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May 17th, 2015 at 4:34 am

Cooling March follows February down

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We have been slow to get the chart up for The Climate Bet results to March 2015. It is up now! Click on the thumbnail chart to the right for the full-sized image and data table. With the April global mean temperature reading only days away, will save our analysis and commentary until then.

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April 30th, 2015 at 1:07 pm

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Inquiry into global temperature data integrity announced

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The London-based think-tank the Global Warming Policy Foundation  announced on 26 April 2015 a major inquiry into the integrity of the official global surface temperature records. Questions have been raised about the reliability of the surface temperature data and the extent to which apparent warming trends may be artefacts of adjustments made after the data are collected.

The inquiry will review the technical challenges in accurately measuring surface temperature, and will assess whether the adjustments to the data are biased and, if so, to what effect. For more information, or to make a submission, see here.

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April 27th, 2015 at 1:42 am

Doubt merchants, or truth warriors? Battle of the documentaries

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Scott Armstrong was interviewed for the documentary, The Global Warming War. Released late last year, the movie provides a contrast with Merchants of Doubt in both style and substance. See The Global Warming War-Scott’s clips (2.5 minutes).

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April 17th, 2015 at 10:00 pm

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La Stampa interviews Armstrong on Gore bet

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The Italian newspaper La Stampa published an Alain Elkann Interview of Scott Armstrong on Sunday April 12 titled “J. Scott Armstrong: “Vi spiego perché le previsioni sul clima sono sbagliate”” here. Alain was particularly interested to know about the subject of Professor Armstrong’s challenge to Al Gore to bet that temperatures will increase dangerously, as Mr Gore has threatened will happen.

Regular readers of this blog will be familiar with the Challenge, but for those of you who are not, or who are interested to read a fresh summary of what scientific forecasting tells us about 21st Century temperatures, you can find the full interview in English on Alain Elkann’s own site here. For those of you who have friends who are struggling to make sense of the dangerous manmade global warming alarm, the interview is a good place to start.

Can’t fault the science? Attack the scientist

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March 2015 saw a new low in public discourse about what changes, if any, to expect in climate over the 21st Century with The New York Times running a high-profile article attacking a scientist who is skeptical about the dangerous manmade global warming alarm. The article suggested that the scientist, Dr Willie Soon, should have provided information about his employing institution’s funding arrangements. Say what?

Was the article part of a larger investigation by NYTimes reporters that found that all scientists routinely report the details of their institutions’ funding, and any other arrangements or relationships that readers of their papers might find interesting… except Willie Soon? If they did, they must have forgotten to mention that in their article.

Is there any reason that Dr Soon was singled out for this “special” treatment, other than the unpopularity of his conclusions about the global warming alarm with the NYTimes reporters and their friends in alarm? We can’t think of any.

It appears that the alarmists are alarmed that the wider public are no longer alarmed. They have no response in science, and so resort to personal attacks.

In his recent article in The Washington Times, Professor Scott Armstrong challenges those who still fear global warming to test whether their fears are justified by following good scientific practice, and replicate the research that they find so unsettling. Perhaps their findings would be different. Now that would be a story!

Scott Armstrong’s Washington Times article, titled “Missing the mark on climate change skepticism: It’s not about the money, it’s about the science”, is available here.

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March 28th, 2015 at 12:52 pm

86 months on, and still no “tipping point”

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With 86 months of the 120 month Climate Bet behind us, we are still waiting for the “tipping  point” Mr Gore promised us. We hope you haven’t been holding your breath, or planted bananas in your wheat field. While the actual temperature has been cooler than Professor Armstrong’ no-change forecasts for more than half of all bet months (51%), the Gore-IPCC forecasts ran hotter than the actual temperature for 81% of months to date.

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March 11th, 2015 at 11:41 am

January 2015 warms Mr Gore’s prospects

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The global average average temperature anomaly ticked up a tad to reach 0.36°C in January, enough to get past half-way to the IPCC “dangerous warming” trend line that is standing in for Mr Gore’s bet. Mr Gore has now won 26 out of the 85 months of The Climate Bet so far; less than half of the 59 months that Professor Armstrong has won. We hope that Mr Gore wins a few more months to keep The Bet alive for the remaining nearly three years that are left to run.

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February 11th, 2015 at 12:17 pm

Why we don’t use IPCC temperatures for The Bet: An update

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In case you, and we, needed reminding, Christopher Booker describes the latest stories to break on the dubious adjustments and revisions that government agencies make to the sparse measured terrestrial temperature record in his The Telegraph article titled “The fiddling with temperature data is the biggest science scandal ever.”  The adjusted data are used to derive the global average temperature series used by the IPCC and others who promote warming alarmism.

Reading Booker’s article leaves the reader with the impression that the use of the term “fiddling” in the title amounts to a classic case of British understatement. The term “rewriting history” is perhaps closer to summarising the violence that is still being done to the official temperature records.

A picture is sometimes worth a thousand words. Steven Goddard’s changing temperature history charts on this page of his blog very effectively illustrate some of the adjustments that have been made to the official series. It is possible, one might suppose, that better data might become available decades or even centuries after the event, or that better methods for analysing data might be developed. But such developments would not explain why every round of adjustments to the older data has resulted in a stronger warming trend.

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February 9th, 2015 at 6:04 am

Who is more accurate, the global coolers or the global warmers?

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Kesten Green and Scott Armstrong tested the predictive validity of the United Nations’ IPCC global warming hypothesis of +0.03°C per year due to increasing CO2 against the relatively conservative hypothesis of natural global cooling at a rate of -0.01°C per year. The errors of forecasts from the global warming hypothesis for horizons 11 to 100 years ahead over the period 1851 to 1975 were nearly four times larger than those from the global cooling hypothesis.

Forecasts from the no-change model, however, were substantially more accurate again than those from the global cooling hypothesis. Findings from their tests covering a period of nearly 2,000 years support the predictive validity of the no-change hypothesis for horizons from one year to centuries ahead (Green and Armstrong, 2014). A pre-publication draft of their “Forecasting global climate change” chapter is available, here.

Green, K. C. & Armstrong, J. S. (2014). Forecasting global climate change. In Moran, Alan (ed.). Climate Change: The Facts 2014, pages 170-186. Published by the Institute of Public Affairs, Melbourne, Victoria 3000, Australia.

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January 28th, 2015 at 3:02 am