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Global Warming Since 1997 Underestimated By Half

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the invest-in-sponges dept.

Earth 534

Layzej writes "A new paper shows that global temperature rise of the past 15 years has been greatly underestimated. The reason is that the weather station network covers only about 85% of the planet. Satellite data shows that the parts of the Earth that are not covered by the surface station network, especially the Arctic, have warmed exceptionally fast over the last 15 years. Most temperature reconstructions simply omit any region not covered. A temperature reconstruction developed by NASA somewhat addresses the gaps by filling in missing data using temperatures from the nearest available observations. Now Kevin Cowtan (University of York) and Robert Way (University of Ottawa) have developed a new method to fill the data gaps using satellite data. The researchers describe their methods and findings in this YouTube video. 'The most important part of our work was testing the skill of each of these approaches in reconstructing unobserved temperatures. To do this we took the observed data and further reduced the coverage by setting aside some of the observations. We then reconstructed the global temperatures using each method in turn. Finally, we compared the reconstructed temperatures to the observed temperatures where they are available... While infilling works well over the oceans, the hybrid model works particularly well at restoring temperatures in the vicinity of the unobserved regions.' The authors note that 'While short term trends are generally treated with a suitable level of caution by specialists in the field, they feature significantly in the public discourse on climate change.'"

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Twice as much to deny! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432505)

Oh, crap. Do you know what this means? Global warming deniers have been slacking by one half this whole time! I don't think they'll be able to deny DOUBLE the global warming fast enough to catch up!

Re:Twice as much to deny! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432731)

Not really. The method they use when filling the gaps is to make the gaps cooler than the average when it deals with historic data and warmer than the average when it comes to new data and for some magic reason all our measuring stations are in places that has observed the least change.
As a denier I only need to take their estimated difference and flip it around. With the invented values for 2012 placed at 1997 and the invented values for 1997 placed at 2012 you can clearly see that there have been no global warming at all.

Isn't it interesting how much intentionally skewed values can change the outcome.

Re:Twice as much to deny! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432999)

I just look at the Great Lakes and other observable evidence of the last glacial period. Of course we are in a warming cycle, that began long before the industrial revolution. Now, for looking at the global warming/changing hysteria, their hockey stick chart looks surprisingly similar to the population chart covering the same years. Somehow they believe that an increase in a trace gas is leading to a mass extinction, while it is tracking with the opposite.

Re:Twice as much to deny! (2, Insightful)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45433065)

Now, for looking at the global warming/changing hysteria, their hockey stick chart looks surprisingly similar to the population chart covering the same years. Somehow they believe that an increase in a trace gas is leading to a mass extinction, while it is tracking with the opposite.

Obviously the increased population of one species means that there couldn't possibly be large scale extinction of other species (which is what "mass extinction" means). Similarly, the increased population of jellyfish must mean the oceans are in fine shape.

Re:Twice as much to deny! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433105)

Yea, right. Everything but humans are going extinct because of a trace gas and a trend that has been going on since before recorded history. BTW, if you really want to kill off a lot of animals, force all of humanity to be vegetarians.

Install more weather stations (5, Funny)

Hatta (162192) | about a year ago | (#45432507)

Clearly they have a cooling effect.

Re:Install more weather stations (4, Funny)

durrr (1316311) | about a year ago | (#45432719)

But those few square kilometers that we miss to cover will spontaneously catch fire when all warming have to flee to them.

Re:Install more weather stations (4, Funny)

erikkemperman (252014) | about a year ago | (#45432979)

I have read some stuff about "chilling effects" of certain government programs. Maybe these programs should not be dismantled but rather refocused?

Queue the special special snowflakes (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432535)

That know more because they read a paper put out by the Cato Institute. They're SPECIAL and WISE and we should listen to THEM. It's all just a hoax! Al Gore and Solar Panels!

Re:Queue the special special snowflakes (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433083)

Libertarians are COWARDS.

no (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432543)

that's not what MY bible says.

Double down (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432555)

Double down on stupid.

Just as they get to the point where they can admit there's been no warming for 17 years and started coming up with excuses, here comes another "estimate".

They had issues with the coverage when they were predicting the apocalypse. I swear they are like addicts that refuse to admit they have a problem. Excuse after excuse. We could have glaciers encroaching on New York and they'd be talking about cO2.

Re: Double down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432577)

And peer reviewed by YouTube no less.

Re:Double down (1, Troll)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year ago | (#45432711)

Double down on stupid.... I swear they are like addicts that refuse to admit they have a problem.

What is interesting here is that they seem to have no problem in their big report reducing warming projections by half -- and now raising total accumulated warming by 100% -- and yet they still call it "science".

Seriously. It would seem to indicate that they have a very serious problem with their science.

Re:Double down (-1, Flamebait)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year ago | (#45432901)

Hey, fanbois. "Troll" is not an appropriate mod for that comment.

You can disagree all you like. But remember that "troll" is not a substitute for "I disagree".

Not that I think anyone who did that modding really cares.

And it was marked -1 for other reasons. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432935)

But I suppose that when every jackass's opinion carries equal weight to actual verifieable independently corroborated facts, you prefer to see it as merely opinion being disagreed with, rather than your trolling anti-science being pointed out.

Re:Double down (5, Interesting)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#45432947)

You be trolling ma'am. You toss off an overstated, inflammatory reply - that's trolling.

Yes, it's also factually incorrect. But that's life.

Re:Double down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433035)

Hey, fanbois. "Troll" is not an appropriate mod for that comment. You can disagree all you like. But remember that "troll" is not a substitute for "I disagree". Not that I think anyone who did that modding really cares.

Ditto.

Re:Double down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432715)

predicting the apocalypse

Trololololo.

Re:Double down (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432717)

Just as they get to the point where they can admit there's been no warming for 17 years and started coming up with excuses, here comes another "estimate".

Last month, weren't some trying to claim that the heat was all in the deep oceans, having somehow gotten there without passing through the surface waters?
Now, the heat is hiding in the small parts of the planet where there are no weather stations.

Riiiiiiight...

Re:Double down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433097)

Small parts?

Antarctica is bigger than the US. Almost 50% larger.

Re:Double down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432747)

Out of curiosity, has anyone made any significant research disproving the "hockey stick" graph yet?

AFAIK, it still holds true.

Re:Double down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432959)

...Out of curiosity, has anyone made any significant research disproving the "hockey stick" graph yet?

AFAIK, it still holds true.

Then you don't know very much, and should read Climate Audit.

Why do you think the IPCC no longer uses the Hockey-stick graph?

Re:Double down (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432847)

Exactly. Now they are talking about inventing temperatures in areas with no weather station. Since their own made-up models have been proven 100% wrong on all of their predictions of what was supposed to happen, I would easily bet their imaginary temperatures are much higher than real.

Re:Double down (2, Insightful)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about a year ago | (#45432855)

Hey, it's the classic scientific method: Form a hypothesis, observe the evidence and/or conduct experiments then collect data, and if said data/evidence doesn't match your hypothesis then alter the experiment or means of observing until it does. Now THAT'S empiricism!!

Re:Double down (-1, Troll)

ArsonSmith (13997) | about a year ago | (#45432991)

There has been no warming for the last 17 years. But this study says that's off by half and warming could be double none.

Re:Double down (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433051)

They had issues with the coverage when they were predicting the apocalypse.

The apocalypse is upon us!
WHY ARE YOU DENYING THE TRUTH?

Re:Double down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433119)

Oblig: how to get no warming [skepticalscience.com]

youtube? (0, Troll)

schneidafunk (795759) | about a year ago | (#45432563)

I didn't realize researchers are now submitting their findings on youtube instead of peer reviewed journals.

Re:youtube? (5, Informative)

Layzej (1976930) | about a year ago | (#45432617)

The first link in the summary links to the paper published by the Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society.. The youtube video makes the science accessible to the layman.

Re:youtube? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432713)

The first link in the summary links to the paper published by the Journal of the Royal Hoaxes Society.. The youtube video makes the alarmist bullshit accessible to the layman.

Fixed that for you.

Re:youtube? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433095)

You didn't fix anything.

Stop taking credit for work you didn't do. ;)

Re:youtube? (-1, Troll)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | about a year ago | (#45432771)

The first link in the summary links to the paper published by the Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society.. The youtube video makes the science accessible to the layman.

And anybody not realizing that is too fucking stupid to even understand the video - let alone the paper.

Re:youtube? (2, Insightful)

pe1rxq (141710) | about a year ago | (#45432675)

Since most of the deniers seem to get their arguments from quality sites like youtube they probably thought it was a good place to post a video with some real research.
The mistake they make is thinking the deniers are interested in science at all....

Re:youtube? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432989)

wait a minute....for the past few years we've been hearing that all the 'missing' heat was being transferred into the deep oceans, and we've been assured that this is correct. Now we find out that the extra heat has been hiding in the arctic? Really? I'm starting to question whether these "scientists" have any clue at all about what's really going on. Considering the massive amounts of funding they're getting in the form of government grants, maybe it's time we cut the funding completely and put that money into a more worthwhile effort, such as desalinization plants for the greening of the Sahara.

Re:youtube? (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | about a year ago | (#45432681)

Isn't that the same thing these days?

Re:youtube? (3, Informative)

Xyrus (755017) | about a year ago | (#45432733)

*FACEPALM*

I understand not reading the story. This is Slashdot after all. But not reading the summary? Come on man. There's a link to paper right at the start of the summary. The youtube vid was to explain it to the average Joe, not for passing a scientific review.

Re:youtube? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432911)

I see. So warming is why it snowed in the state of Arkansas in MAY of 1814??? NO, 2013!!!!! Records have never shown a snowfall in May and they've got records going all the way back to when the French owned this land. And the Antarctic has had the all-time record ice coverage in history. Yep, getting really hot.

Re:youtube? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433091)

The peers can review it all they want regardless of the information channel.

It's the information that counts, not the protection of monopolies and prestige.

STOP IT !! YOU ARE SCARING ME !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432571)

Not !! We here up in the great white north (Toronto - great crack mayor north) see no problem with this !! It has happened many times before it will happen many times hence !!

TRUST ME !!

Manbearpig! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432591)

Right?

Look at how they "fill the gaps" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432595)

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/11/14/curry-on-the-cowtan-way-pausebuster-is-there-anything-useful-in-it/

Climate Scientist != Statistician (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432831)

Climate scientists suck at statistics and modeling. We understood that when a petroleum engineer beg and finding errors in their data at every turn.

  Anytime some tries to discredit someone because they are not a Cliiiimate Scintiiist, just respond that so called Climate Scientists are not Statisticians.

Re:Climate Scientist != Statistician (4, Insightful)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45433183)

Climate Scientists are not Statisticians

But petroleum engineers are?

High School Physics (-1, Troll)

jabberw0k (62554) | about a year ago | (#45432597)

Lesson: When the data do not match your presumed hypothesis -- feign, fudge, and fib, until it fits.

Re:High School Physics (2)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45432627)

Please explain how this was feigned, fudged, and fibbed. I'm sure there are plenty of denialist websites that can help you with that.

Re:High School Physics (2)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45432679)

Let me help you more: the AC post directly above yours "cites" http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/11/14/curry-on-the-cowtan-way-pausebuster-is-there-anything-useful-in-it/ [wattsupwiththat.com] Please translate into your own words.

Re:High School Physics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432725)

They use weather stations 1500KM away and assume the temperature is the similar.

Re:High School Physics (5, Informative)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45432819)

Fail.

Cowtan and Way circumvent both problems by using an established geostatistical interpolation method called kriging – but they do not apply it to the temperature data itself (which would be similar to what GISS does), but to the difference between satellite and ground data. So they produce a hybrid temperature field. This consists of the surface data where they exist. But in the data gaps, it consists of satellite data that have been converted to near-surface temperatures, where the difference between the two is determined by a kriging interpolation from the edges. As this is redone for each new month, a possible drift of the satellite data is no longer an issue.

Prerequisite for success is, of course, that this difference is sufficiently smooth, i.e. has no strong small-scale structure. This can be tested on artificially generated data gaps, in places where one knows the actual surface temperature values but holds them back in the calculation. Cowtan and Way perform extensive validation tests, which demonstrate that their hybrid method provides significantly better results than a normal interpolation on the surface data as done by GISS.

Means... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432957)

...They made it up.

Re:High School Physics (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432877)

Actually, it is a combination of that and the UAH satellites. The problem with using the satellites is that they do not pass over the poles so they read the surface temperature at a wide angle, and the ice at the poles messes up the readings of the satellites.

Re:High School Physics (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432923)

And why not? Their computer models they made up use no actual weather station data at all. They are completely made up and are 100% wrong on all of their predictions.

Re:High School Physics (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432817)

You mean like this?

Kriging across land/ocean/sea ice boundaries makes no physical sense. While the paper cites Rigor et al. (2000) that shows ‘some’ correlation in winter between land and sea ice temps at up to 1000 km, I would expect no correlation in other seasons.

But then ignores that the Arctic is basically on a year round winter.

But I'm sure the article is very rigorous, while using terms like breathless, tortured, plonker, hypers,

Or that they argue about 'no pole data because the satellites don't actually go over 90N/S' even though the satellites can collect the data from 90N/S because they're very close. You may as well argue that the satellites don't go directly over every single inch of earth so they're completely invalid.

Oh, and all the errors pointed out by the commenters as well.

Re:High School Physics (2)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45433003)

That's the spirit! A shoot-from-the-hip comment, not backed by any calculation, measurement or modelling, but hey. someone (with and actual doctorate!) claims something doesn't make sense to her. Case closed, you found one Ph.D. who off the top of her head makes a critical comment (BTW, that's never happened to a peer reviewed paper before) and it proves that the whole thing is nonsense!

Not again. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432603)

Oh great. Here we go.

So what? (4, Insightful)

Karmashock (2415832) | about a year ago | (#45432619)

Japan is rejecting its existing CO2 commitments, Australia is rejecting existing and new CO2 laws, and we're seeing rejections of carbon trading systems in Europe.

So what is the point?

The only reason we have such intense political conflict over the issue is that it is used to justify taxes, restrictions, and various other regulations.

Well... Those aren't going to be happening any time soon indifferent to the science.

The economy is terrible.

People already feel over taxed.

Any further taxes, restrictions, or regulations along these lines won't be accepted.

So why are you guys still trying so hard? For now at least... its over. Its done.

AGW may be the doom of humanity and we might all be living under water while Kevin Costner drinks his own pee while shooting "smokers" in their mad max oil tanker.... But that won't change the fact that people will vote these regulations down.

So... if you're interested in doing anything besides spinning your wheels uselessly... figure out another way to contribute to a solution besides unpopular heavy handed government restrictions.

I say that with the full knowledge that about a dozen people are about to tell me that that is the only thing that will work. Well, no it won't because it won't be accepted and therefore won't work. So if that is all we've got then there is no solution. If people won't accept it... then it won't work. Unless you want to try an Eco-dictatorship where you just shoot people that disagree. Have fun with that.

Re:So what? (0)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#45432981)

OK mods, I've been up all night and I'm cranky and mean but that post isn't Flamebait. It's actually a reasoned response with perhaps a bit more emotional content than a typical C-span episode, but I'm assuming we can all handle just a bit of that sort of thing.

This is the Internet, after all.

Re:So what? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433023)

Which is why we need to actually enslave conservatives and libertarians and make them clean up the planet in bright orange uniforms.

Re:So what? (3, Insightful)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about a year ago | (#45433165)

You seem to be assuming that because it won't be easy, it shouldn't or can't happen. This is idiotic. Of course there are objections. There are objections and obstacles to every significant change that should happen.

Name one important transition throughout history that occurred smoothly. Hell, ending prohibition on alchohol took some work and that was something everyone should be able to agree to. Look at pot legalization or gay marriage today. It should be clear at this point that the biggest problems with either is that some people will pitch a fit against them. Yet it's taking a long time.

What choice do we have? This isn't a "Will it happen or not" type thing, where it's already done and we may as well keep on going. It can and will get worse. We are going to have to transition away from carbon emissions no matter how much people don't like it.

As for how people "feel" about taxes, so what? I'm not happy with sales taxes of 8 cents. That doesn't mean it's too high. People can grow a fucking brain if they think that paying higher prices at the pump or on their electricity bill is worse than climate change. The economy is arguably terrible at the moment I suppose, but that's because we gave control of the economy to wall street. Separate conversation. The economy will recover if we regulate wall street, and it won't if we don't, completely independent of carbon taxes.

Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confidence (3, Insightful)

JoeyRox (2711699) | about a year ago | (#45432655)

Regardless of which side of the warming debate you're on, hearing reports that a climate projection was off by half doesn't instill confidence that scientists really understand what's going on.

Re: Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confid (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432735)

No no no. You don't understand. *this* time we got it right.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (2, Interesting)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45432753)

They don't really understand what's going on, at least with any degree of precision. That's why responsible climatologists give overall projections a wide error band. However, pretty much all the predictions based on honest science (as opposed to throwing spaghetti against the wall) point in the same direction.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (0)

Karmashock (2415832) | about a year ago | (#45432925)

So?

Lets say its entirely accurate. Why do we have all this contention? Think the various factions actually care either way about the science?

Neither side cares.

The issue is rather that the science is being used to justify policy changes and those policy changes are politically contentious.

That is the heart of it.

More to the point, those policy changes are being rejected pretty much everywhere. The Japanese, the Australians, the French... the list goes on and on. And of course the chinese and indians have been very clear that they won't even consider such things.

So what is the point? Come up with a solution people don't hate and maybe you'll get somewhere. Till then... the science doesn't even matter... TO EITHER SIDE. Its all just politics and money.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (2)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#45433055)

No, the science always matters. Just because we can't pull the political will out to fix it (and I agree with you, we are very, very unlikely to change anything this late in the game), but doing the science is important.

First of all, this isn't going to be a total Zombie apocalypse. It may well be pretty bad in some places, not so much in others. Climate change is going to be going on - basically forever as far as humans go. Better predictions may well help future generations minimize harm. At some point it's going to be obvious to even US Republican Senators that climate change is going to economically effect their tiny little world and they might try to do something about it. Knowing them, they;ll screw it up anyway, but we really do need 'science' trying to figure out what happened, what is happening and what might be happening in the future.

It's not just about you....

Especially (3, Interesting)

gr8_phk (621180) | about a year ago | (#45432759)

Especially when a couple month ago we heard that they overestimated because the temperature increase has stalled over the last 10 years. Perhaps this accounts for the missing temperature rise? But then....

While infilling works well over the oceans, the hybrid model works particularly well at restoring temperatures in the vicinity of the unobserved regions

The method used works well over the oceans - is that where they omitted data and the used the prediction method? But it works "particularly well" where we have no actual data to validate it...

Re:Especially (3, Informative)

Layzej (1976930) | about a year ago | (#45433049)

The method used works well over the oceans - is that where they omitted data and the used the prediction method? But it works "particularly well" where we have no actual data to validate it...

no - while the infilling that NASA uses works well over the oceans. The hybrid method (leveraging satellite data) works particularly well over the unobserved regions.

And yes - they do have data to validate it. Read the preceding paragraph: The most important part of our work was testing the skill of each of these approaches in reconstructing unobserved temperatures. To do this we took the observed data and further reduced the coverage by setting aside some of the observations. So to test the skill of the various methods they just compare the results against the data that they set aside during the tests.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (1)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | about a year ago | (#45432809)

Regardless of which side of the warming debate you're on, hearing reports that a climate projection was off by half doesn't instill confidence that scientists really understand what's going on.

And having somebody claim this is about "climate projections" will show us what?

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (1)

mrego (912393) | about a year ago | (#45432993)

So maybe the poles are really getting warmer and the rest of the planet is actually getting cooler. So add the plus and the minus and you get a net zero. So that's change, but a net of nothing, and EVERYONE is partially right (poles warmer, non-poles cooler). I like my new theory. It should please the world.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432829)

A factor of a half is not "orders of magnitude" larger. It's of order 0 in fact.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about a year ago | (#45432865)

Well, it depends on your base, and we're all computer scientists here.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (1)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#45432857)

Even then, most of the numbers used on both sides by zealot laymen are either made up or are fictions being vaguely alluded to. I don't anticipate a change on that level.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432883)

Surely your gross exaggeration is accidental.

"Order of magnitude" = factor 10, not 2.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_of_magnitude

"Order*s* of magnitude" (plural) would be multiple factors of ten (100, 1000), where it's actually a factor 2.

Moreover the "being off" is caused by data collection habits, not due to lack of understanding of the mechanisms behind the warming.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (2)

iCEBaLM (34905) | about a year ago | (#45432937)

Regardless, if we spend money to reduce our greenhouse gases and it turns out global warming was a myth, no harm no foul, and as an added bonus, we have less smog!

If we don't spend money to reduce our greenhouse gases and it turns out global warming is real, we're boned.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (0, Troll)

ArsonSmith (13997) | about a year ago | (#45432953)

We're NASA, our funding is dropping, no more cold war, we no longer have a space shuttle to steam funds to us for, so GLOBAL WARMING!!!!! give us money.

Same goes for Doctors. (5, Insightful)

FriendlyPrimate (461389) | about a year ago | (#45432985)

If a doctor tells me I have cancer, and then later tells me it's progressing twice as fast as originally thought, of course that causes me to lose confidence in doctors and thus ignore anything they have to say. Instead, I'll go listen to the homeopathy providers who keep telling me that doctors don't know what they're talking about, and aren't always telling me that I'm going to die. After all, doctors are only interested in making money.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (5, Insightful)

andy16666 (1592393) | about a year ago | (#45433005)

Wait, there's a debate about whether or not the climate is warming? That's news to me. There's certainly a debate about exactly how quickly it's rising, which is something the scientists have not expressed certainty about. But the fact that the planet is warming as well as the question of the main cause very well studied, well demonstrated and not heavily debated among scientists.

Science really isn't about confidence. It's about evidence. If holding the line, even when you know you're wrong, is what makes people feel confident, it's no wonder they turn to religion. But I'm personally thankful that at least one discipline isn't afraid to publish results that contradict earlier findings, if that's where the evidence leads.

As someone who understands this process, findings like this lend tremendous credibility to the scientific community, and yes, boost my confidence in the work they're doing and the integrity of the published results. It's what makes science the best method we know of for understanding reality.

I am not on any side. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433041)

To be on a side in the global warming debate would imply that I am qualified.

I am no more qualified to be on a side of this debate than I am to be doing brain surgery. I am not qualified and I don't have the time or ability to go back to school and retake my undergrad science to get into grad school and then for for a PhD and then spend several years in post-doc to become qualified.

And as far as this paper is concerned, I am not aware of any government policy based on its results or direct implications on my life; therefore, it is irrelevant to me since I am not in the field.

These findings look like to me the Climate science community finding problems and adjusting their theories - and maybe their hypotheses.

And as far as any "debate" in the media, politicians and even here - they don't know WTF they are talking about. They are overpaid talking heads out to boost ratings, politicians pandering to a public that is under the delusion that they are informed, and Slashdot users who think they are smarter and more informed than anyone else.

The best I can hope for is that the climate scientists are doing their job well and ethically, do my best to understand them, and ignore the loudmouths whose agendas are everything but the truth - everyone on TV fits that description.

Re:Orders of magnitude errors dont inspire confide (1)

k.a.f. (168896) | about a year ago | (#45433147)

Regardless of which side of the warming debate you're on, hearing reports that a climate projection was off by half doesn't instill confidence that scientists really understand what's going on.

An order of magnitude error is a factor of 10. This was a factor of 0.5.

Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432659)

And to top it off, the denialist nazis voted it down to hide it.

Libertarians are liars and cowards. :D

Headline - by half? (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | about a year ago | (#45432709)

The only thing in TFS is that they cover 85% of the globe, where does the "half" come from?

Re:Headline - by half? (5, Informative)

Layzej (1976930) | about a year ago | (#45432823)

The only thing in TFS is that they cover 85% of the globe, where does the "half" come from?

From the paper, which actually found 2.5 times as much warming by leveraging satellite data as the CRUtemp does by ignoring the unobserved region. The paper shows that the Arctic is warming at about eight times the pace of the rest of the planet. This is not an unexpected finding: see polar amplification [wikipedia.org]

Re:Headline - by half? (1)

Layzej (1976930) | about a year ago | (#45432853)

That should read: found 2.5 times as much warming by leveraging satellite data than the CRUtemp does by ignoring the unobserved region.

Re:Headline - by half? (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#45432861)

well, apparently the numbers they chose for the missing areas increase the total warming by "half".

which kind of implies that the warming there has been enermous.

but the figures from these closest one's were already used in previous estimates? and snow etc of polar regions has been pretty well in focus? so huh?

85%? (1)

srussia (884021) | about a year ago | (#45432737)

The reason is that the weather station network covers only about 85% of the planet

What does that even mean?

Re:85%? (1)

acoustix (123925) | about a year ago | (#45432811)

"Aw, you can come up with statistics to prove anything, Kent. Forty percent of all people know that." - Homer Simpson

Re:85%? (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#45432841)

It means that there are no surface weather stations on 15% of the planet.

Re:85%? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433137)

Are you wanting real science here? This is liberal science where we can all have a cloud unicorn and if you disagree you are just mean.

2*0 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432767)

2*0 = 0. 'Kay. (Current models show the Earth has not warmed significantly in over 15 years)

Re:2*0 (1)

pe1rxq (141710) | about a year ago | (#45432813)

No they do not.

Models all the way down (4, Insightful)

jamesl (106902) | about a year ago | (#45432843)

One model predicts global warming. A second model guesses at the surface temperature in places where there are no thermometers and finds warming. The second model confirms the first.

And this is science.

Re:Models all the way down (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#45433161)

If it's 100 degrees at point A and it's 100 degrees at point C, will a point B between them be more likely to have 100 degrees or 0 degrees?

If all the world's ice melted... (2, Informative)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about a year ago | (#45432867)

Below is a link to National Geographic's interactive map page of what the world would be like hundreds of years from now if all the ice in the world actually melted.

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/09/rising-seas/if-ice-melted-map [nationalgeographic.com]

And some think that the NatGeo's prediction may be too low...

http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2013/11/map-sea-level-rise-probably-wrong-its-too-optimistic/71246/ [theatlanticwire.com]

We are looking very fucked recently (3, Insightful)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | about a year ago | (#45432919)

Between the jellyfish blooms and this...things are looking much worse all the sudden. I'm not even getting into the various "superstorms" yet.

A risky idea that might get us out of this is to dump lots of money into a "manhattan project" for fusion power and photovoltaics. Advances in those fields could solve global warming quite easily.

Underestimated by Infinity (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45432961)

Given that since 1997 there has been no measurable increase, underestimating 0 by 50% is 0, so yes this is true. In fact, underestimating 0 by infinity is still 0, just as true.

In other news.... (1, Troll)

bobbied (2522392) | about a year ago | (#45432969)

Global Cooling advocates from the 70's claim their analysis was wrong by a factor of 2. The world is cooling faster than expected based on their data with the blank areas estimated (fudged) too.. The freezing of the arctic regions is expected to continue during the winter months, endangering polar bears and penguins who are not adapted fully to the new level of cold. No comment yet from Al Gore.

OK, enough (4, Informative)

Evtim (1022085) | about a year ago | (#45433019)

Look, I am fed up with this. Just turned 40 last Sunday. Have pictures from all the 40 birthdays. All the way through the 70-ties and half 80-ies I am on ski - 50 cm or more snow, winter is in full swing. Late 80-ties and early 90-ties - cold but not freezing. After that it became ridiculously hot until last Sunday when the absolute record was set - it was 23 (I repeat 23 degrees!!!). And BTW, this 20-23 degrees lasted for 4 weeks in total (mid-October -mid November). Utterly ridiculous and unheard off.

Since 10 years the fruit trees in our garden do not bear fruit because it is too hot in January and February, so they start blossoming too early. Then a few frosts in March and they are gone. 17 degrees Celsius in mid-February (for a week or longer)? In my country where this is the coldest month? WTF?!?

Say what you will about anecdotes, I don't give a damn. My experience is unambiguous. The Earth is warming.

Re:OK, enough (4, Funny)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year ago | (#45433081)

Say what you will about anecdotes, I don't give a damn. My experience is unambiguous. The Earth is warming.

No you must be wrong. It's as cool as it has ever been in my gas-guzzler with the aircon on full.

Re:OK, enough (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433125)

All the way through the 70-ties and half 80-ies I am on ski - 50 cm or more snow, winter is in full swing. Late 80-ties and early 90-ties - cold but not freezing.

Didn't you move to Arizona in '88?

Excuse me, but (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45433069)

Bullshit Alert!

Global Warming vs. Terrorism (5, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#45433135)

I admit, it's a bit off topic, but it is something that has bugged me for ages and I still didn't find an answer, so please, maybe someone can shed some light on it:

Why is there a "controversy" about Global Warming, and why is there none about "Terrorism"?

Global Warming may or may not happen. Ok. I don't want to discuss what kind of "proof" one side or the other may have, let's just say it may or may not happen. Likewise, terrorism. There may or may not be terrorist attacks on some parts of "our" (with varying definitions of "our") soil. Again, I don't want to discuss whether or not they would happen.

The point now is: We try to do anything in our power to prevent terrorist attacks, while at the same time we argue whether or not we should do anything to prevent Global Warming. My question is: From a risk management point of view, shouldn't it be the other way 'round?

Both are classic examples of Risk Management problems. Risk and cost to mitigate vs. reward/damage contained. It's the usual 2x2 matrix. On X, we have "do nothing" and "do something", on Y we have "nothing happens" and "something happens" (ok, very simplified, but you get the idea). So, in case of terrorism, that would net us:

We don't do anything and nothing happens: Pre-9/11 situation, no cost, perfect situation
We do prepare and nothing happens: Possibly the current situation, high cost and no damage
We prepare and an attack happens: Also the possibly current situation, high cost but with good damage control, leading to no/little damage
We don't prepare and an attack happens: Worst case scenario, no cost to prepare but high damages, possibly costing thousands of lives.

When you do the same matrix for Global Warming, it looks quite similar, though with a teeny-tiny little twist at the end:

We don't do anything and nothing happens: Current situation and best case future scenario
We do prepare and nothing happens: High cost, potential change in our lifestyle for no gain.
We prepare and an attack happens: Also high cost, but climate changes can be mitigated to the point where only little/no damage has to be suffered.
We don't prepare and an attack happens: Worst case scenario, with millions on coastlines being dead or homeless, with out of control storms and the weather from hell.

The thing I have problems with now is: The former can, worst case, cost a few thousand lives with maybe a building or two gone. The latter can literally cost millions of lives with coastal areas becoming uninhabitable for decades, if not forever, with storms causing damages in the billions and unforeseeable effects to agriculture and nature (and of course tourism, but I guess that's the least of our concerns then). And we're not talking about some brown bodies being killed, that could well be millions of AMERICANS dead, so the usual "Anyone outside the US doesn't count as human to the US" won't apply.

Yet we pump billions into the defense against terrorism, but we keep bickering on whether or not Global Warming may or may not happen. Anyone able to explain the sense in that?

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