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IPCC Says Climate Prediction Impossible

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posted on Jul, 2 2010 @ 10:17 AM

IPCC Says Climate Prediction Impossible

Link to blog

On page 85 of their excellent book, Taken By Storm: the Troubled Science, Policy, and Politics of Global Warming, Christopher Essex and Ross McKitrick call our attention to an astonishing line in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 2001 Assessment Report:

The climate system is a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible. [bold added]

This statement appeared in the Executive Summary of Chapter 14 of the report produced by Working Group 1. (See the first bullet point on the right, page 3 of this 18-page PDF - or the third bullet point from the bottom here. The quote appearing in the book differs slightly from the IPCC version now on-line and reproduced above.)

The PDF referred to in the text has this bullet point:

• Reverse the decline of observational networks in many parts of the world. Unless networks are significantly improved, it may be difficult or impossible to detect climate change over large parts of the globe.

This comment I find particularly interesting as one of the things they have been doing in order to 'massage' the figures is to remove elements from the networks, yet here they are saying they need to improve them.

Could it be that by improving them they are referring to siting more units on roofs next to air conditioning units, or in tarmacadamed car parks??

The IPCC on-line document states in the third bullet point from the bottom as mentioned in the blog:

Improve methods to quantify uncertainties of climate projections and scenarios, including development and exploration of long-term ensemble simulations using complex models. The climate system is a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.** Rather the focus must be upon the prediction of the probability distribution of the system's future possible states by the generation of ensembles of model solutions. Addressing adequately the statistical nature of climate is computationally intensive and requires the application of new methods of model diagnosis, but such statistical information is essential.

** emphasis by me.

How can Gore and Company still be peddling the climate change/need carbon tax scenario when by their own admission they are not able to accurately predict the climactic future and further by their own actions are ensuring that data gathering is seriously weighted in favour of a warming overall climate.

Don't get me wrong. I am NOT saying that there is no global warming. My points are these:
  • The climate of our planet is cyclical
    • We have been in a warmer period since the later 70s
    • It is possible that we are now in a downward trending period

  • The data used to determine the IPCC figures has been skewed
    • Earlier periods have been reduced in value to emphasis the upward trend
    • Monitoring stations in colder areas have been excluded

  • Carbon Dioxide is but one of the 'greenhouse' gasses, yet is singled out.
    • It is however almost the smallest component
    • The system is not closed
    • Higher levels are good for plant growth and feeding the population
    • CO2 is not toxic under 10,000ppm and currently is only 389.76ppm

  • The proportion of increase in CO2 in the atmosphere that can be attributed to human activity is around 4% thus AGW is a lie.

I could go on, and on, and on, as the list is endless.

I think the expression is "Hoist by their own petard" (From the play Hamlet (III.iv.207) by Shakespeare)

[edit on 2/7/2010 by PuterMan]

posted on Jul, 2 2010 @ 11:12 AM
While I am not disagreeing with the OP, I want to include some interesting data from another source, because they seem to be indicating that the vegetation-CO2 link is not quite as straight forward as I had originally thought:

From: Climate control: Is CO2 really in charge?

The prime suspect for these dramatic swings in Earth's climate is carbon dioxide: hot periods over the past half a billion years generally coincided with high levels of CO2 in the atmosphere and vice versa. A few studies, however, suggest that there may been periods when it was cold when CO2 levels were high, or hot when CO2 levels were low. So what was going on at these times? Are we missing part of the climate puzzle?


In reality, all kinds of things change when the planet heats up. When the atmosphere warms, for instance, it holds more water vapour, a potent greenhouse gas, which leads to further warming. Warming also reduces the area covered by snow and sea ice, meaning less energy is reflected back into space, again leading to further warming. Plugging such feedbacks into computer models gives a climate sensitivity of between 2 °C and 4.5 °C, with a best estimate of 3 °C, the last report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded.

Unfortunately, in some ways this figure is misleading, and not just because of the uncertainties in the models. The deeper problem is that current climate models include only feedbacks that kick in rapidly in response to warming. Feedbacks that kick in only after decades or centuries, such as changes in the extent of ice sheets on land (as opposed to snow and sea ice), are left out."

Now these people are saying the data insists CO2 is THE prime factor in the 'climate change' phenomenon, and such insistence is prevalent in the community of their peers. Yet the limitations and focus of their models seems to hardly embrace the idea that they don't know everything.

Rampant deforestation seems to be a topic much avoided, the decimation of the phytoplankton in the sea seems equally ignored. The cumulative effect of air traffic, heavy transport activity, commercial industrial activity - all seem to be marginalized in deference to the notion of 'generic' "human activity" when in fact the average humans are not even responsible for as much as 4% of carbon emissions. There is some consideration (finally) for solar influence, but even that is relatively abbreviated within the models they use.

I thought this article was relevant to your piece so I opted to piggyback it on your thread, I hope you don't mind.

posted on Jul, 2 2010 @ 01:30 PM
reply to post by Maxmars


I thought this article was relevant to your piece so I opted to piggyback it on your thread, I hope you don't mind.

Absolutely not, no problem and thank you for your input.

The New Scientists article was interesting and in particular one point caught my attention:

The existence of such inconsistencies no more disproves the idea that CO2 causes warming than your house warming up on a sunny day proves it does not get warm when you turn the heating on - rather, it suggests that some other factor caused the warming. In theory the mid-Miocene anomaly could be due to the sun warming, for instance, except that as far as we know the sun's output, while gradually increasing, otherwise varies very little.

Yet again they manage to twist words because their inference is that it is proven and this phrase "no more disproves the idea that CO2 causes warming" is designed to draw your attention away from the fact that it also does absolutely nothing to prove it either. Most of these things seem to be mind games!

They go on to say:

Climate sensitivity refers to how much global temperature rises when the level of CO2 in the atmosphere doubles.

This, despite the fact that they have come up with a wonderful story about how they 'missed' the correct levels of CO2 because they calculated at 10 million year intervals because....

Lee Kump of Pennsylvania State University in University Park says earlier studies missed the dip because they calculated levels at 10-million-year intervals and the ice age lasted only half a million years.

The dip, he says, was triggered by a burst of volcanic activity that deposited new silicate rocks. These draw CO2 out of the air as they erode. As the ice spread, however, it gradually covered the silicate rocks, slowing the erosion and so allowing CO2 to build up in the atmosphere once more. This eventually would have warmed the atmosphere enough to end the ice age, says Kump.


First I would point out that the New Scientist is a vehement warmist publication before I go on to say that this 'study' seems to me to be one of the 'fight back' attacks promised by the global warming camp. He offers absolutely NO proof of his theory which seems to be PURE conjecture.

He states "The Ordovician ice age happened 444 million years ago", OK that's fine, but the major volcanic eruptions of sufficient size to have that much effect are the formation of the traps.

  • The Deccan Traps - 60-70 million years ago (Wiki)
  • Siberian traps - 250 million years ago (Wiki)
  • Emeishan Traps - 260 million years ago (Wiki)

So unfortunately none of these major volcanic activities coincide with the Ordovician. In addition to this of course silicates form the bulk of the rocks on the planet so an ice sheet covering one relatively small part is not going to have that much effect on the CO2 sink.

Silicates comprise the majority of the earth's crust, as well as most planets and moons

Source: Wiki

The hydrolysis of silicate does remove CO2, but this is going on all over the planet. Methinks this is a bit of "Scientific Bull# Baffles Sheeple's Brains"

Now we come to another wonderful piece of double talk almost as good as the data manipulations.

To get a more accurate picture, researchers have to look at periods similar to the present. One such time is the early Pliocene about 4.5 million years ago, when CO2 levels were around 400 ppm - only slightly higher than they are now - yet the Earth was more than 3 °C warmer, with smaller permanent ice sheets and sea level up to 25 metres higher.

One recent study of the Pliocene concluded that the Earth system sensitivity at this time was 4.5 °C per CO2 doubling (Nature Geoscience, vol 3, p 60). Another study, by Pagani and colleagues, using a different methodology, found that it could have been as high as 7 °C per CO2 doubling (Nature Geoscience, vol 3, p 27).
(From your link again)

OK this reads as follows:

  • The CO2 was about the same but the temperature was higher and there was less ice
  • Because that does not compute with the computer model of 3 deg per CO2 doubling
    • The figure must have been higher i.e.4.5 deg
    • And because another study got a different result the figure must have 7.5 deg.

  • Whatever comes up that does not fit we will invent something that does.

And so the Ordovician:

The Ordovician period began approximately 490 million years ago, with the end of the Cambrian, and ended around 443 million years ago, with the beginning of the Silurian. At this time, the area north of the tropics was almost entirely ocean, and most of the world's land was collected into the southern super-continent Gondwana. Throughout the Ordovician, Gondwana shifted towards the South Pole and much of it was submerged underwater.


Oh great hairy tes**les of Doom - there goes the CO2 sink theory from lots of rock. It just sank!

"We really don't know how high CO2 has been in the geologic past. Thus we don't know how sensitive the surface temperature of the Earth is to CO2," said Don DePaolo, head of the Earth Sciences Division at the Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory in California.

Source Whilst this is talking about the highest levels of CO2, the comment is significant

And then to the Devonian

Mean atmospheric O2 content over period duration ca. 15 Vol % (75 % of modern level)
Mean atmospheric CO2 content over period duration ca. 2200 ppm (8 times pre-industrial level)
Mean surface temperature over period duration ca. 20 °C (6 °C above modern level)
Sea level (above present day) Relatively steady around 180m, gradually falling to 120m through period


I guess it got a bit warmer by that time!

I think the main points are that
  • "they" do not actually know
  • There probably is warming but anything "we" do is not going to make the darnedest bit of difference
  • It may get like the Devonian
  • It may go into another ice age

  • Value added tax - 21%
  • Income tax 40%
  • Global warming? Priceless!
  • For (that and) anything else there's carbon tax

Sorry if that got a bit disjointed - I had several interruptions.

[edit on 2/7/2010 by PuterMan]

posted on Jul, 2 2010 @ 05:11 PM
The Farmers Almanac has to have their forcasts ready 2 years in advance to get it ready for print. For the past 100 years they have a 90% accuracy rate. I think they know more than a bunch of scientists. The Farmers Almanac has to keep being right because real dollars (their company) depends on it.

posted on Jul, 5 2010 @ 07:13 PM
reply to post by Doctor G

That is certainly an interesting point, and 90% at two years distant is I guess pretty remarkable.

Perhaps they should make some predictions of the IPCC.

It might have to be slightly longer range but........

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