Thursday, 29 March 2012

Where's the acceleration, dude?

We're constantly bombarded with portents of doom and gloom, and apparently, by extension "the end of civilisation as we know it". "Climate change" is accelerating, "global warming" is accelerating, sea level rise is accelerating, and (could, or may) threaten millions if not billions of people, "extreme weather events" are increasing in frequency and intensity. Of course, there's no actual evidence that these terrible events are occurring or that they will happen. They're all from model-based "projections", unjustified predictions, or just pure conjecture and general alarmism.

There's no doubt the Earth's been getting warmer in fits and starts, since the end of the last ice age. However, there's the flaw in the alarmists theories right there in that sentence - "fits and starts". The increase hasn't been on a relatively smooth upward trajectory; there's an irregular cycle built in, and no-one can explain the reasons behind the variability. Paleo-climatology has a stab at it, and there are some plausible theories, some "best-guesses", and some downright manipulation and cherry-picking of data, like Mann et. al.'s "hockey-stick". But there's no proof as to what caused the variations - there cannot be. Climatologists are looking back through a murky and distorting lens, and one which might be pointing in the wrong direction, or looking at the wrong data.

Let's look at some real data then, and see how the "x is accelerating" claims stack up. First temperature data, because most or at least may think this is the main indicator of things to come.

Latest Global Temps - UAH Satellite data to February 2012
HADCRUTt3 variance-adjusted global mean, 1979-present (Source: Wood for Trees)
I don't see much of an acceleration in either, rather a stasis, or a even a recent decline in the HADCRUT thermometer record, yet we are told "global warming has continued unabated, ar that it has accelerated. Where's the evidence for these assertions? "Habeus corpus" - "produce the body".

Variations in global mean sea level from a combination of TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1, and Jason-2 altimeter measurements, using 60-day and annual smoothing of 10-day average values. A glacial isostatic adjustment correction of 0.3 mm/year has been applied.
Source: Woodworth, P.L., W.R. Gehrels, and R.S. Nerem. 2011. Nineteenth and twentieth century changes in sea level. Oceanography 24(2):80–93, doi:10.5670/oceanog.2011.29

Where's the acceleration, dude?

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