1 Wisdom ( Paraphrased) From The Master. ( http://www.sirbacon.org/links/4idols.htm )
"In the Novum Organum (the new instrumentality for the acquisition of knowledge) Francis Bacon classified the intellectual fallacies of his time under four headings which he called idols. The fourth of these were described as :
Idols of the Theater are those which are due to sophistry and false learning. These idols are built up in the field of theology, philosophy, and science, and because they are defended by learned groups are accepted without question by the masses. When false philosophies have been cultivated and have attained a wide sphere of dominion in the world of the intellect they are no longer questioned. False superstructures are raised on false foundations, and in the end systems barren of merit parade their grandeur on the stage of the world."
Climate science has been particularly prone to this fourth type of idol- although it is not the only branch of science so affected. Cosmology may well have fallen into the same error - but that is a whole other subject.
2.Very Unreliable Climate Forecasts - Modelling.
The entire IPCC - Al Gore CAGW paradigm relies on the forecast of dangerous 21st century warming based on the projections (not, modellers are careful to say,predictions) of climate models. The outcome of models is not empirical data .The science is in the inputs i.e our knowledge ( often guesses and assumptions ) of the initial conditions and the physical processes at work on the initial state of the system as we can best establish it.
Science section IPCC AR4 WG1 8.6 deals with forcings, feedbacks and climate sensitivity. The conclusions are in section 8.6.4 which deals with the reliability of the projections.It concludes:
"Moreover it is not yet clear which tests are critical for constraining the future projections,consequently a set of model metrics that might be used to narrow the range of plausible climate change feedbacks and climate sensitivity has yet to be developed"
What could be clearer. The IPCC in 2007 said that we dont even know what metrics to put into the models to test their reliability.- ie we don't know what future temperatures will be and we can't calculate the climate sensitivity to CO2.This also begs a further question of what mere assumptions went into the "plausible" models to be tested anyway.
This quoted statement was ignored by the editors who produced the Summary for Policymakers. Here predictions of disaster were illegitimately given “with high confidence.” in complete contradiction to several sections of the WG1 science section where uncertainties and error bars were discussed. Almost all the worlds politicians, media and eco-activist organisations uncritically accepted and used these predictions as infallible guides to the futrure and acted on these delusions of certainty.
A glance at this Figure 2-20 From AR4 WGI shows immediately that the IPCC models are structurally obviously highly implausible. The only natural forcing is TSI and everything else is anthropogenic. For example under natural should come such things as eg Milankovitch orbital cycles,Lunar related tidal effects on ocean currents and all the Solar activity data time series - eg Solar and Earth magnetic field strength, TSI ,SSNs ,GCRs ,( effect on aerosols,clouds and albedo) CHs, MCEs, EUV variations, and associated ozone variations and Forbush events. Unless the range and causes of natural variation are known within reasonably narrow limits it is simply not possible to calculate the effect of anthropogenic CO2 on climate.
Has the situation improved in the upcoming AR5 report? Apparently not . AR5 Chapter 9 which asesses the capabilities of the climate models concludes;
"Although future climate projections cannot be directly evaluated,climate models are based on verifiable physical principles and are able to reproduce many important aspects of past response to external forcing. In this way, they provide a scientifically sound preview of the climate to come."
Based on the words in bold the last sentence is logically absurd.In fact after a further five years of modelling the uncertainty of the 2100 temperature prediction is larger for AR5 than for AR4 and the AR4 predictions themselves are clearly failing as shown in Fig 1 on a previous post on this site - Global Cooling Climate and Weather forecasting. See it also at
The structural and scenario uncertainties of the models are so large that all the efforts spent on modelling represent a sad waste of human,computing and financial resources. In addition the modellers have been very remiss in allowing the IPCC Summaries for Policymakers to get away with enormously under-reporting the structural uncertainty of their predictions (projections) and thereby scaring policy makers into adopting, and the public in many countries into accepting policies and taking actions to control emissions which are likely to prove to have been entirely unnecessary and enormously economically harmful to the worlds population.
3. Less Unreliable Climate Forecasts- the Baconian empirical inductive approach.
In the last 200 years enormous amounts of data have been collected on global temperatures both from instuments and in the last 35 years in particular from various temperature proxies. A similarly impressive data base now exists on measurements of proxies of the various possible climate drivers - both exogenous and endogenous to the earth,. Considerable effort has been put into the statistical anaylsis of all these data in order to distinguish cause from effect and identify trends and periodicities in both sets of data and correlate one with the other with a view to forecasting future trends.
In order to make an informed judgement it is sine qua non for the seriously interested non scientist - eg politicians especially Presidents and Prime Ministers, ,media editors and TV producers or professional NGO environmentalists to have some familiarity with both the general priniples involved and also with the actual data as opposed to the opinions of some percieved authority either individual - eg Al Gore or institutional - the IPCC.
As to the principles, the main problem lies in distinguishing signal from noise in the various time series and correlating the signals.I recommend Nate Silvers new book. "The Signal and the Noise - why so many predictions fail but some don't" Penguin NY. 2012 - see especially chapter 12 on - A Climate of Healthy Skepticism.
As an aside - it is worth noting that the transformation of the estimated size of the USA's accessible energy resources and the regeneration of its econmy which will surely follow unless the greens and politicians get in the way ,has as its source the truly astounding improvement in the signal to noise ratio in the interpretation of seismic data by the oil industry.
Some of the main statistical analytical techniques and proxy time series of temperature and climate drivers used in climate research are clearly explained in the 2nd edition of William James Burroughs - "Weather Cycles -Real or Imaginary? " Cambridge University Press 2003.
As for the data - seriously interested parties should take the time necessary to become familiar with the general trends in both the instrumental and proxy time series of temperature ,forcings and feedbacks.
Links to some key data sources were provided in the earlier post referred to above.Look also at the three Bogard contributions at http://www.therightclimatestuff.com/StudiesReports.html
Central to any forecast of future cooling is some knowledge of the most important reconstructions of past temperatures.
Serious partipants in the climate debate should at least read the conclusions of and look at the figures in some key papers to get a general sense of what the data base shows.
Here are links to some of the most relevant papers.
note Espers comments on the above at
and see how Mann's hockey stick has changed in later publications
an important paper by Berggren et al relating solar activity to climate is
and another showing clearly the correlation of the various climate minima over the last 1000 years to cosmic ray intensities -( note especially Fig 3C ,D below ) is: Steinhilber et al - 9400 years of cosmic radiation and solar activity from ice cores and tree rings:
for Holocene climate variability in general there is much food for thought in Mayewski et al :
Of particular interest with regard to the cause of the late 20th century temperature increase is Wang et al:
for an immense compendium of articles and data including a summary of projections for the future see:
However the empirical approach too has its dangers. Bacon says
"But the Empirical school of philosophy gives birth to dogmas more deformed and monstrous than the Sophistical or Rational school. For it has its foundations not in the light of common notions, (which though it be a faint and superficial light, is yet in a manner universal, and has reference to many things,) but in the narrowness and darkness of a few experiments. To those therefore who are daily busied with these experiments, and have infected their imagination with them, such a philosophy seems probable and all but certain; to all men else incredible and vain."
Hansen and Mann have clearly fallen into this trap. Indeed , Mann acknowledges as much in the Silvers book . He says that in order to be heard , in his policy proselytizing presentations he plays down the extent of the uncertainties which he finds in his professional researches .
4. Global Cooling Forecast- Timing and Amount in the NH.
Having indicated earlier the difficulties and follies of forecasting of all sorts.I will now jump in and take a run at the next 600 years for the Northern Hemisphere based on a considered look at a fair cross section of the scientific literature.
The conclusions and or assumptions on which this forecast is based are as follows.
a) The earth will continue to cool from the Holocene climate optimum from between 4-7500 years ago due to orbital insolation changes.However this cooling woudn't contribute more than about 0.05 degrees /100 years.
b) CO2 sensitivity is low. ( 1 degree or less ) CO2 rises follow temperature rises and the sensitivity equation is logarithmic.Feedbacks to CO2 increases cannot be positive otherwise we wouldn't be here to discuss it. In the last 16 years there has been no net warming with CO2 up nearly 9%.
c) We are a few years into a negative phase of the PDO - we can expect another 20 - 25 years of cooling - say a total of +/- 0.2 degrees by about 2035.
d) Solar "activity" is the main climate driver on millenial,centennial and decadal time scales.The cosmic ray intensity is a good proxy for solar activity in general and eg clearly correlates with climate minima in Fig3 in Steinhilber et al
e) The real controlling factor for the immediate future is where the present day stands relative to the approximate 1000 year solar cycle peak
f) Having looked at numerous reconstructions I suggest that that of Christiansen and Ljungqvist 2012 is the most likely to be closest to reality. : http://www.clim-past.net/8/765/2012/cp-8-765-2012.pdf
The key working hypothesis is that the solar cycle from 1000- 2000 may repeat and we may see a pattern of temperatures from 2000 - 3000 which is similar to that from 1000 - 2000. Fig.5 from the Christiansen paper is shown above.The solid lines are the 50 year moving averages and the dashed red lines are the upper and lower quantiles.
Inspection of Figure 5 - both the moving average and the annual data suggests the following.
1) The millennial peak is sharp - perhaps 18 years +/-. We have now had 16 years since 1997 with no net warming - and so might expect a sharp drop in a year or two - 2014/16 -with a net cooling by 2035 of about 0.35.Within that time frame however there could well be some exceptional years with NH temperatures +/- 0.25 degrees colder than that.
2) The cooling gradient might be fairly steep down to the Oort minimum equivalent which would occur about 2100. (about 1100 on Fig 5) with a total cooling in 2100 from the present estimated at about 1.2 +/-
3) From 2100 on through the Wolf and Sporer minima equivalents with intervening highs to the Maunder Minimum equivalent which could occur from about 2600 - 2700 a further net cooling of about 0.7 degrees could occur for a total drop of 1.9 +/- degrees
4)The time frame for the significant cooling in 2014 - 16 is strengthened by recent developments already seen in solar activity. With a time lag of about 12 years between the solar driver proxy and climate -see:
http://adsabs.harvard.edu/full/2005ESASP.560...19U we should see the effects of the sharp drop in the Ap Index which took place in 2004/5 in 2016-17. This estimate is quite independent from the estimate made from Fig5.
Conclusions1) It seems reasonably probable - say 60-40 that the NH will cool by about .35 degrees by 2035.
2) We should be able to check the accuracy of this forecast by 2018 -20.
3)The forecast of a 1.2 degree drop by 2100 is little more than a mildly interesting suggestion at this time.
4)The idea of a Maunder Minimum equivalent at 2600 - 2700 is highly speculative.
5)Contrary to the forecasts made here, the Livingston and Penn solar data are suggesting a possible Maunder type Minimum in the near future.Given our ignorance of solar physics this is entirely possible. In this case a much more rapid cooling would occur with very serious consequences to the global food supply and the world economy.
6) Global cooling will take place concurrently with that of the NH but because of the great extent of the southern oceans the global cooling will be significantly less - maybe +/- 50 % and there will also be considerable regional variability. in both hemispheres.
7) There is no reason to expect damaging global warming.Cooling is more likely .To prepare for it, all ethanol and biofuel subsidies and mandates should be abolished.Renewable energy and electric car subsidies are economically wasteful and accomplish nothing.There is no reason to control CO2 emissions, indeed some extra CO2, while having little effect on temperature, might aid farm productivity . 25% of the increased crop yields in the 20th century was due to the CO2 increase.