back to article The last time Earth was this hot hippos lived in Britain (that’s 130,000 years ago)

It’s official: 2015 was the warmest year on record. But those global temperature records only date back to 1850 and become increasingly uncertain the further back you go. Beyond then, we’re reliant on signs left behind in tree rings, ice cores or rocks. So when was the Earth last warmer than the present? The Conversation …

  1. hplasm Silver badge
    Coat

    It's true!

    Looking at the High Street, the hippos are still living here...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's true!

      Could we help African wildlife by encouraging poaching of the UK herds of hippopotamus shellsuitus for Chinese medicinal purposes?

      1. PCar
        Stop

        Re: It's true!

        It's true, it's dire here:

        This article was first published at The Conversation.

        If I want to read these articles I can visit their website. I do not want to find them cut and pasted into The Register.

        Publish your own articles.

        Can anyone recomend a tech site that resembles how The Register was in September 2015 before the PC coup?

        1. Douglas Lowe

          Re: It's true!

          "Can anyone recomend a tech site that resembles how The Register was in September 2015 before the PC coup?"

          You mean when The Reg rode the post climate-gate denialist-propaganda wave with a deluge of click-bait articles full of half-baked comments dressed up as scientific fact?

          Yes, I do remember those times - and I'm glad to see that The Reg has started publishing proper science articles on this subject instead.

          1. Turtle

            @Douglas Lowe Re: It's true!

            "'m glad to see that The Reg has started publishing proper science articles on this subject instead."

            Yeah, because if you can suppress dissent thoroughly enough, AGW will become true. By magic, apparently.

            1. TheOtherHobbes

              Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

              >AGW will become true. By magic, apparently.

              It's called "science" - you know, that thing that keeps the lights on and the heating working, and makes it possible to do cool things like take photos of Pluto.

              You should try learning something about it - especially the part where being noisy and opinionated doesn't excuse you from being dead wrong.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                @TheOtherHobbes

                You should take your comment to heart and apply some of the science you advocate and apply it to validating the computer models that the AGW religion is based on.

                When you have successfully managed to validate just one of the models please publish your results with all calculations in one of the journals.

                1. tfb Silver badge
                  Boffin

                  Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                  This is a good trick you are playing.

                  Obviously it is not possible to 'validate a model' in the sense either of proving that the program is correct (ie that it implements the algorithms that it claims to) which is impractical for almost all programs, or of proving that the algorithms themselves correctly simulate the climate, since (a) we know they don't, certainly that they don't to very fine detail, (b) we don't even know all the processes that make up the climate yet, and (c) even if (a) and (b) were true there is SDIC.

                  Finally, we can't even do the kind of empirical testing with climate models that we can (or could) do with CFD simulations of nuclear weapons, for instance, since we don't get to repeatedly build an earth and set it going to see if it agrees with what our model predicts.

                  So, as I said, it's a clever trick to ask for something that you know can't be done and make it sound reasonable. Not bad for someone living under a bridge.

                  But there are, of course, things that can be done, apart from the standard process of incorporating new and computationally expensive processes in the models and running everything on finer scales as computer power increases as well as fixing bugs and improving algorithms.

                  You can run your climate model for a period in the past, and see how well it agrees with what happened. People do this, a lot, and use the results to correct models.

                  You can take multiple climate models and run them with the same input data and compare their results. People do this: they've called Model Intercomparison Projects (MIPs).

                  You can run a single model with a varied set of inputs (an ensemble) and see how its predictions vary. You can do this in a MIP as well. People do this.

                  1. h4rm0ny

                    Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                    >>"So, as I said, it's a clever trick to ask for something that you know can't be done and make it sound reasonable. Not bad for someone living under a bridge."

                    Actually, it can be done. You just watch over time and see if the predictions of the model bare out. Until that is done, you can say that the model is unproven. And that's what they're stating. You say that people compare previous models with how it turned out and adjust them so they fit - but there's no logical way to distinguish between whether you're making your model better, or introducing other wrong things that make it fit the known conclusion:

                    Suppose my model said the temperature rise was going to be 0.4C but it was 0.6C. I shall say that latent heat in the oceans contributed 0.2C. Now my model is right. That's the process you're talking about, but is it right? Maybe it wasn't latent heat in the oceans but something else. Maybe it was but it contributed 0.3C and the other parts of your model were wrong for some reason. You don't know. And there is no way to know if you've improved your model or just made it wrong in a different way. Creating a model to fit a known conclusion cannot prove the model. Only prediction can. So you're wrong to dispute with the OP about asking for proof that a model is right. Yes, you are indeed unable to give that proof to them. But the implication of that is that you can't verify the model, not that they are wrong to ask for proof before they'll believe.

                  2. Tom 13

                    Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                    No trickery involved. In fact, we're just trying to hold the Warmists accountable for their claims. If the models work you SHOULD be able to make an accurate prediction about what you're modeling for the next 20 years. Looking back at the predictions the Warmists made 20 years ago, none of them have come true. They claim they've made adjustments to the models, but for some reason they keep saying the same thing: the Earth should be warming faster than it is. So, either ALL of the actual physical instruments or wrong, or the models are badly flawed and should be scrapped. I know which one is the correct scientific approach. Apparently none of the Warmists do.

                    And yes, sitting at the Service Desk where I do, from time to time I get to hear the bean counters at one of the largest and best known nests of Warmist vipers. They DO actually target money toward Warmist propaganda instead of actual science.

              2. Preston Munchensonton
                Stop

                Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                It's called "science" - you know, that thing that keeps the lights on and the heating working, and makes it possible to do cool things like take photos of Pluto.

                You should try learning something about it - especially the part where being noisy and opinionated doesn't excuse you from being dead wrong.

                You should try taking your rose-colored glasses off. No one can say that climate science isn't really now climate politics. If you think otherwise, keep enjoying that hole that you shoved your head into. The rest of us have to see this drivel posted everywhere, now El Reg included.

                Can we just move the non-IT articles into a "sister" site where all the other crap can float on it's own? Personally, I hate that any of this is polluting what used to be a joy to read.

                1. Drewc (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

                  Re: Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                  We have had a science channel on The Register since 2003.

                  1. Tom 13

                    Re: We have had a science channel

                    Yes, but the point we've made repeatedly is that regardless of the letters behind the names, this isn't science.

                  2. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    @ Drewc

                    Re: Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                    We have had a science channel on The Register since 2003.

                    And once upon a time it ploughed its own sceptical furrow. Now it is following the standard alarmist drivel that every mainstream media clone tries to shovel all over the public.

                    Lewis Page and Tim Worstall were a joy to read, even if you disagreed with them. Have you seen the Alexa ratings since TPTB kicked them out, and employed you instead?

                    1. h4rm0ny
                      Pint

                      Re: @ Drewc

                      It's a real shame that Lewis Page is gone. Just did a search online and all I can find is a terse statement that he's not legally allowed to discuss the reasons behind his departure. Any speculation? He was editor for about four years, no? And I've really enjoyed The Register during that time.

                      It's worse for his leaving, imo. Pint for you, Lewis.

                    2. Drewc Gold badge

                      Employed me instead?

                      I have been here since 1997.

                2. Thought About IT

                  @ Preston Munchensonton

                  "You should try taking your rose-colored glasses off. No one can say that climate science isn't really now climate politics."

                  Are you really ignorant of the deliberate plan to politicise climate science by propagandists funded by the fossil fuel industries? They reasoned that all they needed to do to maintain their profitability was to delay action to cut greenhouse gas emissions by making it politically impossible. As is all too evident, they've been very successful.

              3. JohnMoser

                Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                Actually, it's fossil fuel that keeps the lights on and the heating working for most of the world. Real science, not your "science", is about using observation and experimentation to predict future behavior and outcomes. Skepticism is vital for science, especially when the predictions of apocalyptic fear-mongers consistently fail.

                "You should try learning something about it - especially the part where being noisy and opinionated doesn't excuse you from being dead wrong." At least, you are right about something. Now, if only you would take your own advice.

                If you want people to believe your folderol, a good first step would be to tell the leaders of your movement to stop flying around the world on private jets.

              4. Turtle

                @ TheOtherHobbes Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                "'AGW will become true. By magic, apparently.' It's called "science" - you know, that thing that keeps the lights on and the heating working, and makes it possible to do cool things like take photos of Pluto. You should try learning something about it - especially the part where being noisy and opinionated doesn't excuse you from being dead wrong."

                That the lights are on and it is possible to take photos of Pluto does not even begin to mean that AGW is true. Not even a little. And to attempt to make any sort of connect between these things shows a great ability to reason in bizarre and ignorant ways.

                It seems that you are blissfully unaware that scientists have been wrong many, many times.

                Perhaps you ought to consider attempting to learn something about both science and scientists, insofar as the sum total of your understanding seems to approach zero.

                1. Pompous Git Silver badge

                  Re: @ TheOtherHobbes @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                  It seems that you are blissfully unaware that scientists have been wrong many, many times.

                  Mostly wrong. If they were right we'd still be discussing phlogiston, transplanting monkey glands, sterilising the mental defectives, performing skin graft experiments using four year old Jewish children (no anaesthetic required)....

              5. Steve Crook

                Re: @Douglas Lowe It's true!

                "It's called "science" - you know"

                No it isn't. It's called engineering.

              6. Tom 13

                Re: It's called "science"

                No it's not. In fact science is quite the opposite. In point of fact, this Warmist claptrap has much more in common with The Spanish Inquisition than it does with science.

          2. PCar

            Re: @Douglas Lowe, It's true!

            @Douglas Lowe,

            "You mean when The Reg rode the post climate-gate denialist-propaganda wave with a deluge of click-bait articles full of half-baked comments [Opinion Articles] dressed up as scientific fact?

            Yes, I do remember those times - and I'm glad to see that The Reg has started publishing proper science articles on this subject instead."

            Why the aggressive reply implying my comment was related to the topic of the article? I did not mention climate change, global warming or anything else related to the content of the article.

            To quote my comment: "If I want to read these articles I can visit their [The Conversation] website. I do not want to find them cut and pasted into The Register."

            Your aggressive, accusatory comment is further proof - if any were needed - of warmist jihadi's mission to attack, denigrate and misrepresent any opinion which even remotely appears to deviate from their agenda.

            In this case it was stating I did not want to see cut and paste articles from another website here. As the website - The Conversation - is left leaning and a supporter of the global warming narrative the attack dogs are unleashed. Would the same occur if I objected to a cut and paste GWPF, Bishop-Hill or ASI blog article? Probably not.

            My opinion on the global warming narrative is not disclosed or relevant to my comment.

            What is related to the article:

            No mention of the El Nino affect on 2015 temperatures

            No mention that satellite temperature measurements do not show the warming shown in (repeatedly adjusted) NOAA, NASA-GISS and UK Met figures

            1. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Re: @Douglas Lowe, It's true! [the IT angle]

              No mention that satellite temperature measurements do not show the warming shown in (repeatedly adjusted) NOAA, NASA-GISS and UK Met figures

              But, but, but, but, that can't possibly be true. All the Atmosphere-Ocean Coupled Climate models agree that the temperature of the troposphere is increasing more rapidly than the surface temperature. And we all know that computers can't tell lies... So it must be those blasted NASA satellites telling lies. [/sarc]

              1. Tom 13
                Unhappy

                @Pompous Git

                You shouldn't play the sarcasm card. The Warmists don't understand it, and even now are working to claim the satellite data is wrong and needs to be "adjusted" to match the models.

                http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/barbara-hollingsworth/sierra-club-president-says-satellites-are-wrong-our-planet-0

                http://www.wunderground.com/resources/climate/hoax.asp

          3. Scott 53

            Re: It's true!

            Yes, I do remember those times - and I'm glad to see that The Reg has started republishing proper science articles on this subject instead.

            FTFY

        2. Turtle

          @PCar Re: This article was first published at The Conversation.

          So thanks to the Register deciding to "improve" the site, instead of Lewis Page's very healthy skepticism, we get this alarmist bullshit.

          1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

            Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

            @Turtle,

            I fail to see how an article explaining some of the current results of climate research is "alarmist bullshit". It would take a Sun journalist to read this article and produce a piece with the headline "Loony climate scientists say global warming will mean hippopotamuses roaming London". Because it doesn't; it just mentions how thing were different at times in the past when the overall climate was warmer for different reasons, and how we may have delayed the next glaciation.

            Perhaps you should try reading it instead of posting based on what you assumed it said.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

              @Voyna i Mor

              The big problem is there has been no appreciable temperature rise for more than 18 years and the warmists can't stand that so they 'adjust' the records to fit their doctrine and get very upset when the satellite temperature records are mentioned.

              The science is NOT settled but the green blob tries to insist that it is. The problem they have is trying to record hundredths of a degree with instruments that might be accurate to half a degree if you are lucky and a couple of degrees if you are not.

              1. strum Silver badge

                Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

                >The big problem is there has been no appreciable temperature rise for more than 18 years

                Your big problem is that this is a lie. Your attempt to cherry-pick a set of years you can finagle into an anti-science factoid no longer works.

              2. Rik Myslewski

                Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

                I, an ancient Reggie, must weigh in on your bit of tepid twaddle, Ivan 4. Your "no appreciable temperature rise for more than 18 years" assertion is, I can only assume, based on John Christy's (UAH) manipulation of satellite data-acquisition over the past few decades.

                That "manipulation" indentifier, as you'll know if you understand the basics of satellite data, is not an accusation, but merely a simple definition of how satellite multi-wavelength radiance data requires manipulation to transform such data into approximations — with, it must be admitted, wildly wide error bars — of temperature data. Oh, and that satellite radiance-sensing studies only cover the mid to upper troposphere, and not down here on earth where we Puny Humans™ live.

                If you've done your research — and I'm assuming you have — you already know that the only other (significant) analyst of the satellite record is Remote Sensing Systems of Santa Rosa, California. Check out this reasonable analysis by their VP and Senior Research Scientist Carl Mears, as well as his quote: "I do not expect that the hiatus and model/observation discrepancies are due to a single cause. It is far more likely that they are caused by a combination of factors. Publications, blog posts and media stories that try to pin all the blame on one factor should be viewed with some level of suspicion, whether they are written by climate scientists, journalists, or climate change denialists."

                So what it appears that you're attempting to assert is that NOAA, NASA, the Met Office, the Japanese Meteorological Agency, BEST, and any number of other surface-temperature analysts are somehow involved in a global conspiracy to skew their ever-more-accurate conclusions (any scientist who doesn't clarify his conclusions due to new and better analyses of his data is an ass) for political or selfish reasons.

                Damn, dude — if that's what you imagine might be even remotely possible, I've got this lovely li'l bridge for sale. For you? Such a deal I could make!

            2. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

              I fail to see how an article explaining some of the current results of climate research is "alarmist bullshit".

              Until this "alarmist bullshit" appears in university level textbooks such as TR Oke's Boundary Layer Climates some of us will continue to call it "alarmist bullshit".

              Climate is the local average of not just temperature, but also precipitation, evaporation rate, windiness, cloudiness and storminess. The type of vegetation is also used to determine the classification of a climatic zone. Until ~30 years ago, the concept that a global temperature average was a climate did not exist. The obsession with a variable that cannot be measured is the giveaway that it's "alarmist bullshit".

              Any physicist worth their salt will tell you that increasing temperature results in an increase in the evaporation rate of water. There are chefs and cooks who will tell you the same thing. Housewives even. You can conduct experiments yourself demonstrating that this is so. Despite this, the evaporation pans situated at rural weather stations have shown a decline in evaporation rates since the 1960s when they came into widespread use. It is called the Pan Evaporation Paradox.

              Despite this, the promoters of "alarmist bullshit" insist that the "alarming" rise in average temperature means increasing drought. This would only be true if the evaporation rates had increased, hence the use of the term "paradox". It is a paradox only if you believe that temperature change equates to energy change. It does if you are dealing with a single substance such as a pan of water. The atmosphere is not a single, uniform substance. It can contain anywhere between 0% water and whatever the saturation point is for a particular temperature. Air can be moving or stationary. Ocean currents that move swiftly contain more energy than slower moving currents, or stationary ocean.

              The variable that is of real interest in global changes is energy, or more accurately changes in energy content of the planet. This variable, energy change, is called enthalpy. Despite many millions of dollars of funding, there has been no attempt at measuring Earth's enthalpy. Instead, it is calculated by measuring changes in average temperature. The nice thing about averages is there are so many of them: the arithmetic mean, RMS, median etc. In the case of climastrology, the arithmetic mean of the median of recording stations is used. Execept when the station reports its own arithmetic mean using hourly temperatures. And for good measure [joke alert] in the US, the highest quality meteorological network on the planet, only 17% of weather stations comply with the World Meteorological Stations standards for temperature measurement.

              As well as the challenge to point to a tertiary level text wherein all of this is properly explained, I have another. Go to the International Standards Organisation and find the definition of Global Average Temperature. A committee was set up some decades ago, but I suspect that you will find there is no such definition. It's Rafferty's Rules as we say in Australia and the Global Average Temperature is whatever you want it to be.

            3. Turtle

              @ Voyna i Mor Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

              "it just mentions how thing were different at times in the past when the overall climate was warmer for different reasons, and how we may have delayed the next glaciation."

              The article very clearly says, in the very first sentence, that this year is the warmest on record. In fact, just to refresh your memory, here it is again, copy-pasted from the article and so verbatim: "It’s official: 2015 was the warmest year on record." Did you skip that part?

              Obviously you don't understand how this works.

              Someone wrote a paper. Evidence was gathered and inferences were drawn, upon which conclusions were made. The writers of the paper certainly agree with their own conclusions and think that they are well-founded and correct.

              That doesn't mean that they are. That's a point that you - and others here - don't seem to grasp.

              A related point which you also miss is that criticism of scientific arguments and its evidence, and the conclusions based on them, are at least as importance as the arguments, evidence, and conclusions themselves.

              And I didn't see any criticism in the article. On the other hand, if Lewis Page wrote the article, there would have been.

              Many demerits to The New Register for this.

            4. Tom 13

              Re: I fail to see

              Yes you do. You should probably start with the fact that Hottest Year Since ... claim was thoroughly debunked about an hour after the first PR release from the Warmists was issued.

          2. Dan 55 Silver badge

            Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

            It's a shame really, I was hoping to see something of Lewis' after the flooding explaining that it was all the hippies' fault.

          3. Just Enough

            @Turtle

            Let's decode your incisive comment;

            "healthy skepticism" = I agree with it.

            "alarmist bullshit" = I don't like what this says.

            1. Turtle

              @Just Enough Re: @Turtle

              Extreme skepticism about the impending and imminent end of the world and life as we know it is always in order.

          4. Naselus

            Re: @PCar This article was first published at The Conversation.

            "Lewis Page's very healthy skepticism"

            You mean the man who headlined the 4th lowest arctic summer ice minimum as '31st highest on record'?

            Yeah. Healthy.

            1. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Arctic ice "melt"

              You mean the man who headlined the 4th lowest arctic summer ice minimum as '31st highest on record'?

              Ah yes, the warmists' poster child. I do love the way you bring up a cooling event as if it was a warming event. There's this very interesting organisation called NASA whose pronouncements I will paraphrase. Over the period of record, the Arctic ice cap has disintegrated 8 times; that is, around once every four years over 30 years. The breakups were caused by windstorms that blew the ice out of the Arctic Ocean. Note that this is not melting due to a change in temperature.

              Ice is an excellent insulator so heat in the Arctic Ocean waters normally is confined to melting just a little of the undersurface of the ice. When the ice is removed, the water is free to radiate heat skyward. Most of this radiation is lost to space. Some of it is absorbed by CO2 molecules and somewhat less than 50% of this is reradiated back to the ocean. Nevertheless, the breakup of Arctic ice allows Earth to lose more heat than it does when the ice remains intact.

              1. Rik Myslewski

                Re: Arctic ice "melt"

                @Pompous Git

                "... the breakup of Arctic ice allows Earth to lose more heat than it does when the ice remains intact."

                You are, quite simply and empirically provably, incorrect. Look up "albedo" someday, and learn how an ice-free Arctic absorbs solar radiation rather than reflecting it.

          5. Martin Budden

            @Turtle

            "healthy skepticism" means considering both sides of the argument, and all research & evidence, with an open mind. LP was a cherry-picker: he was anything but open-minded.

        3. LucreLout Silver badge

          Re: It's true!

          @PCar

          Yes, quite what this has to do with IT is a mystery to me. Publishing anything by "Climatologists" is going to be wholly one sided. They were never going to stand up and say "Well, it turns out everything I've worked on & studied for the past 20 years was wrong and while this will undoubtedly end my career, all is well with the Earth".....

          It is literally no different to putting out a press release from ESSO saying "Burning oil has no adverse impact on anything ever".

          No matter which side of the climate debate you sit, this was an astonishingly poor article compared to those of the recent past.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: It's true!

            To the haters of the article: are you lot really as bonkers as you portray yourselves or just scientifically completely ignorant and illiterate?

            This is a clear explanation, by two experienced and qualified scientists, of the background to the current publication of conclusions about the recent climate (not weather) figures.

            No doubt you still believe the Earth is flat and that the planets revolve around it too.

            You may or may not understand the article. You may or may not follow the explanation about methodology, evidence and current conclusions or the caveats. But to just follow your bigotries and express your fear and ignorance so foolishly and publicly, well, that takes a bizarre kind of courage or stupidity I suppose.

            If you have some solid, peer-researched and accepted evidence to the contrary, I am sure we should all like to read your account, along with your theories of creationism no doubt.

            1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

              Re: It's true!

              > To the haters of the article: are you lot really as bonkers as you portray yourselves or just scientifically completely ignorant and illiterate?

              You did put "or" where you should have put "and". And the answer is "yes".

            2. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Re: It's true!

              If you have some solid, peer-researched and accepted evidence to the contrary, I am sure we should all like to read your account, along with your theories of creationism no doubt.

              From La Marguerite:

              When I launched the TalkClimateChange forums last year, I was initially worried as to where I would find people who didn’t believe in global warming. I had planned to create a furious debate, but in my experience global warming was such a universally accepted issue that I expected to have to dredge the slums of the internet in order to find a couple of deniers who could keep the argument thriving.

              The first few days were slow going, but following a brief write-up of my site by Junk Science I was swamped by climate skeptics who did a good job of frightening off the few brave Greens who slogged out the debate with. Whilst there was a lot of rubbish written, the truth was that they didn’t so much frighten the Greens away – they comprehensively demolished them with a more in depth understanding of the science, cleverly thought out arguments, and some very smart answers. If you want to learn about the physics of convection currents, gas chromatography, or any number of climate science topics then read some of the early debates on TalkClimateChange. I didn’t believe a word of it, but I had to admit that these guys were good.

              In the following months the situation hardly changed. As the forum continued to grow, as the blog began to catch traffic, and as I continued to try and recruit green members I continued to be disappointed with the debate. In short, and I am sorry to say it, anti-greens (Reds, as we call them) appear to be more willing to comment, more structured, more able to quote peer reviewed research, more apparently rational and apparently wider read and better informed.

              [Emphasis mine]

              Source:

              https://lamarguerite.wordpress.com/2008/04/12/green-advocates-failing-in-climate-debate/

              1. h4rm0ny

                Re: It's true!

                The thing I dislike most from your quote is the characterizations of AGW skeptics as "anti-greens" (closely followed by the pejorative 'deniers', what am I, a pair of tights?). I, and I'm confident in speaking for others as well, care a great deal about the environment and I have long been an active campaigner on environmental issues as well as considerable financial support to conservation of species, local environments as well as general animal welfare as a related area.

                The fact that I am unconvinced of AGW currently does not make me "anti-green". Yet I repeatedly see my voice and support co-opted by AGW-proponents for their own gain - whether that be egotistical or simply financial. Money that could be going to forest conservation or protection of endangered species of bird or mammal, gets squandered on subsidies for wind farms when a single nuclear power station would do the job of hundreds. Airtime that could be used to highlight the fact that over-fishing has brought our marine ecology to the brink of catastrophic collapse is endlessly swallowed up by people attempting to say how this weeks weather is the result of AGW. Realistic methods of dealing with changes in the climate and adaptation are side-lined by near religious obsession with CO2 and ill-founded ideas for eliminating it with little real idea about whether or not they'll work. Research grants are vacuumed up by academics who know that if you want to get published, what you have to do is put "Climate Change" in your abstract somewhere.

                And people shout down debate with pre-decided positions like the person you quote who looks at two debating groups on the forum she runs and deplores the fact that 'those who are wrong have the better arguments'; with no indication she is aware this indicates bias on her part.

                Being AGW-skeptical does not mean you are an anti-green. If we turn out to be correct, we'll have been some of the most green people on the planet.

              2. John 156

                Re: It's true!

                Hang on, you've missed the pièce de résistance from the article:

                Greens are less educated? Nope.

                Greens have less time? Nope.

                Greens are a little reticent? Nope.

                Greens are less intelligent? Definitely nope.

                Greens are less passionate? Absolutely nope.]

                Greens have less at stake? Clearly not.

                Which should have been:

                Greens are less educated? Yup.

                Greens have less time? Nope.

                Greens are a little reticent? Nope.

                Greens are less intelligent? Definitely Yup.

                Greens are less passionate? Absolutely nope.]

                Greens have less at stake? Clearly Yes because if things get too hot here on Earth, Natalie Bennet could return to her own planet.

            3. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Re: It's true!

              To the haters of the article: are you lot really as bonkers as you portray yourselves or just scientifically completely ignorant and illiterate?

              Actually, I don't "hate" the article at all; I merely find it "sciencey" rather than scientific.

              Scientific question for you, or rather a mathematical one and an awful lot of the science I pay attention to is mathematical. The statistical analyses performed by climastrologists apply only to what is called normally distributed data (aka a Gaussian distribution); a normal distribution consists of random data. Daily temperatures are not a normal distribution, they are autocorrelated; definitely not random. That is, a warm day is more likely to be followed by another warm day rather than a cold one; a cold day is more likely to be followed by another cold day rather than a warm one. Laymen refer to this phenomenon as seasons: summer, autumn, winter and spring, empirically confirming that daily temperatures are far from random.

              What is the mathematical, or scientific justification for treating autocorrelated data as if it were random?

            4. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: It's true!

              If only being berated by a pretentious imbecile could change people's minds, we could save the Earth from it's imminent destruction

        4. Drewc Gold badge

          Re: It's true!

          We have republished articles by third parties since almost since we started publishing daily. The percentage used to be much, much higher. So what it comes down to is this: you don't like the article. Tough.

          Good luck with finding that tech site.

        5. Dan 55 Silver badge
          1. Drewc Gold badge

            Re: It's true!

            Ars Technica? Yes, Dan 55 if PCar dislikes this article, he's gonna hate the climate coverage on Ars.

            1. Dan 55 Silver badge

              Re: It's true!

              Shhh, let him click on the link and read it.

            2. LucreLout Silver badge

              Re: It's true!

              @Drewc

              I'm not sure it's just about this article, is it?

              The Register has always been left leaning (I've been reading it since the beginning), and that's been ok with me, because it's always represented both sides of a debate with a reasonable amount of coverage, even though I'm center right on a classical political spectrum.

              What has happened with the last purge and this brave new direction though, is that it's marched off into the left wing wilderness hot on Jeremy Corbyn's heels, and that is most certainly not a good thing. A lot of the smarter, more experienced and capable writers have left (Worstall for example), and what we've got instead is.... considerably more light-weight. It's becoming something akin to the Guardians Comment is Free section, which is nothing short of an echo chamber for the hard of thinking.

              The Register has long been one of my favourite sites on the web, but this new direction has way overcooked it, and I'm hoping the staff will reassess before the death spiral begins. Your position at the top of the tech site tree may be as well earned as it is historic, but it is not guaranteed and it should not be taken for granted.

              1. h4rm0ny

                Re: It's true!

                >>"What has happened with the last purge"

                Has there been some sort of official action that I missed? I've seen a couple of references to this and I notice Lewis and Worstall don't seem to be writing (though thankfully Orlowski is presumably still around?).

                Did El Reg. fall under new management or something?

              2. Drewc (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

                Re: Re: It's true!

                Tim Worstall is a freelancer who writes for many publications. Freelancers come and go and sometimes come back again.

                IIRC TIm wrote one column a week for The Register for a couple of years - and then two columns a week for a year or so. He has also written the very occasional feature. He has a distinctive tone and ha a fan base here, but... all told he has written 290 articles for The Register over three or four years. We publish more than 13000 articles a year.

                Drew - BTW - "always been left-leaning" - I wonder how many readers agree

                1. Tom 13

                  Re: I wonder how many readers agree

                  Whether you are left leaning or right leaning isn't a matter of opinion. It's a matter of fact. If you are left leaning and there really isn't anything wrong with your position, you shouldn't be ashamed to admit it. That so many leftists deny they are leftists is the most telling thing about how evil they are.

              3. Rik Myslewski

                Re: It's true!

                "The Register has always been left leaning..." Damn you, sir, damn you! I had just sipped a fine demi-mouthful of Calvados when I read your counterfactual analysis, a bit of droll hilarity that caused a dram of beautiful Basse-Normandie liquor to leap from my nose onto my keyboard instead of sinuously traversing down my gullet to where my liver awaited it with warm anticipation.

                Perhaps I shouldn't indulge in expensive eau de vie de cider while reading The Register's Comments section.

                My bad.

    2. JennyZ

      Re: It's true!

      Wild Chavs stalk the Earth, swilling Babycham and smoking Woodbines...

  2. FreemonSandlewould

    ManBearPig! run away! Glo-bull Warming!

    Please you guys are nuts if you think we are going to fall for the glo-bull warming scam. It's a power grab and people know it. Please don't be a Ruling Class Oligarchy(tm) shill.

    1. David Nash Silver badge

      "glo-bull" wow I see what you did there, so clever!

      1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

        So clever that he posted the same under an article from Sept. 2014 within two minutes of his post above.

        Other pearls of wisdom include "Obamao". A case of terminally stupid, it seems.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          @GrumpenKraut

          Perhaps your European bias is showing. Hardly stupid, conjoining the names Mao and Obama is quite appropriate and amusing considering Obama's actions and his complete disregard for the US Constitution. He's just another pinhead, tinpot dictator in my opinion and does not deserve any respect. Calling him "Obamao" is mild compared to what others call him.

          Don't forget that you all have special names for the European politicians you don't like, let alone the "hate speech" that you exhibit regarding Americans.

          1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

            Re: @GrumpenKraut

            > He's just another pinhead, tinpot dictator ...

            Pretty please, kindly look up what the word "dictator" means.

            > ...let alone the "hate speech" that you exhibit regarding Americans.

            You cannot possibly mean me. If "you" is for "Europeans", well, I cannot help with that, I had to be born somewhere.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @GrumpenKraut

              Sorry but as far as I am concerned, Obama's disdain for the rule of law in this country makes him a tinpot dictator. He has overstepped his Constitutional boundaries and bullied and belittled his staff, the entire military, the legal system in this country reels from his interference in states rights, he makes promises he cannot possibly keep and makes laws that only serve to further divide this country.

              I will admit that I used a sweeping generalization including you regarding the "hate speech" that a very large percentage of European posters on the Register exhibit against Americans. If that is not your specific opinion, I apologize.

              With a handle like yours, you of anyone should understand the implications of unbridled and uncontrollable "immigration". The fact that literally MILLIONS of undocumented aliens have invaded the USA under his watch seems to escape most Europeans understanding. Anyone who speaks out against it is pilloried for their opinion.

              When I was last in Germany in 2006, the people I was with were quite vocal and angry about the "Invasion of the Turks" as they put it. However, those in Southern Germany in the country (Maulberg area) have very different viewpoints than in Heidelberg or Frankfurt.

              1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

                Re: @GrumpenKraut

                I do know next to nothing about US policy, so cannot comment on what Obama might have done. However, name calling simple gives no information. So should only be used when everybody around has the very same opinion as you. You cannot assume this is the case in El Reg's comment dungeons 8^)

                About immigration: interesting times, I give you that.

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: @GrumpenKraut

                The Turks in Germany are called (translated), guest workers and they were invited in to do the jobs for which there are not enough Germans or that Germans are unwilling to do. You need to widen your German circle beyond neo-nazis. They have helped to make Germany one of the most successful economies and most interesting countries in the world (I am not German).

                As for the USA immigrants: unless you are Amerindian, where does your lot come from? I believe that what you probably mean by immigration has been going on for an awfully long time, often in greater numbers and driven by the foreign policies of some odd place, umm, USA I think.

                Really, why are so many of us so unpleasant and ignorant on this site?

                1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

                  Re: @GrumpenKraut

                  I understand you are answering the other anonymous (heck, why does everybody post as A.C.?).

                  > You need to widen your German circle beyond neo-nazis.

                  A certain negative attitude against our Gastarbeiters is (sadly) shared well beyond what you can reasonably call neo-nazis. In several places (some parts of big cities mostly) this is not uncommon. The neo-nazis try to take advantage of that. Watch what was/is happening following the Cologne mess.

                  Germany never had any useful immigration laws and that will continue to bite our collective Krauten backsides.

                  1. jzl

                    Re: @GrumpenKraut

                    Yeah, why do people post as AC? It's reasonably anonymous to begin with. After all, my real name isn't jzl and I'm pretty sure you're not actually called GrumpenKraut.

                    Although it would be utterly awesome if you were.

                    1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

                      Re: @GrumpenKraut

                      > I'm pretty sure you're not actually called GrumpenKraut.

                      Indeed not 8-) Thought the handle would be appropriate because, obviously "Kraut", and my moderately(?) grumpy style in discussions.

                    2. Drewc (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

                      Re: Re: @GrumpenKraut

                      I agree with you jzl.

                2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

              3. Drewc Gold badge

                Obama disdain for law...

                This is seriously off-topic, Anonymous Coward.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Obama disdain for law...

                  Drew,

                  Not when he makes promises and treaties about climate change he knows can't be kept and aren't under his legal authority, while simultaneously penalizing states by gutting their entire economy (IE any state that is dependent on coal for it's livelihood) with regulations that are supposed to be the authority of Congress.

                  Also add the absolute fact that many of your writers have recently taken great pains to insert derogatory wording (in too many articles to count) against any Republican or Conservative or Christian ideal. By doing that you have made EVERYTHING political and fair game.

              4. Drewc Gold badge

                Obama disdain for law...

                This is seriously off-topic, anonymous coward...,

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @GrumpenKraut

            considering Obama's actions and his complete disregard for the US Constitution

            I know I shouldn't feed the trolls, but do you *really* think that if the President's actions on anything had in fact violated the constitution that *THIS* Congress wouldn't have already started impeachment proceedings?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @GrumpenKraut

              *THIS* Congress has never missed an opportunity to bend over for BO. Anyone who thinks BO would be impeached for anything less than being caught in bed with a dead Girl Scout is incredibly ignorant. Not knowing BO's constant Constitutional violations is willful ignorance. BTW, Constitution is capitalized and you need to research for when asterisks are used.

              1. Tannin

                Re: @GrumpenKraut

                BTW, Constitution is capitalized

                No it isn't.

                Capitalisation is for proper nouns and certain well-defined scientific terms. Other than when starting a sentence, "constitution" begins with a lower case "c" - except when the word forms a part of a proper noun. An example is "the Constitution of the United States". This is the formal title of a specific document and as such is capitalised if and only if you are using that exact form. When you write (for example) "the American constitution" or "let's amend the constitution", it is never capitilised.

                This is the exact same rule you use to determine the capitilisation of organisational titles. The "chairman of a golf club" vs the "Chairman of the Particular Exact Golf Club", or "Dr Smith over there is a professor of physics at Oxford" vs "this is Dr Smith, Professor of Physics at Oxford University. In each case, the first is a descriprion, the second is a formal title, which is why you write them differently.

                Clear? Too subtle a difference for you to get your mind around? Perhaps. You don't seem to be doing too well at subtle so far, but we live in hope.

            2. Tom 13

              Re: wouldn't have already started impeachment proceedings?

              Only the completely uninformed would believe they would have.

              Impeachment is NOT a criminal punishment. It requires 2/3 majority to convict. Since we all know the Demoncrats would vote against impeachment even if The Big 0 were found with a smoking AK-47 in his hands while surrounded by 30 dead bodies all with slugs that match that specific weapon, they would not start it.

    2. Esme

      Methane clathrates?

      Maybe that;s what kept the temperatures up if CO2 wasn;t doing so? Permafrost warmed, releasing some, then sa the Earth warmed further, shallower arctic seas warmed and their clathrates melted releasing the methane, boosting the warming further?

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: Methane clathrates?

        Permafrost warmed, releasing some

        Norwegian Geological Survey warmed an area of permafrost. This resulted in the growth of shrubbery that shaded the ground. The ground subsequently remained frozen to a shallower depth than when the atmosphere was cooler. That is, a warmer atmosphere resulted in less likelihood of the methane in the frozen layer being released.

        Sitting at a desk staring at a computer screen is not an adequate substitute for going out into the field and actually looking at what happens when...

    3. Drewc (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Not a useful contribution ...

      ...FreemonSandlewould

    4. Dave 126 Silver badge

      >It's a power grab and people know it.

      Okay, so you invoking the line of reasoning of "who benefits?". So far, so reasonable. However, were you to wield that approach as the undiscriminating blade that it is, you would acknowledge that fossil fuels have benefited - in terms of money and power - some fairly unsavoury groups and individuals. And the thing about money and power is that it is used to retain and gain more money and power.

      This influence is in lobbying in Washington D.C, through to giving Putin leverage over his neighbours, through to the West turning a blind eye to Saudi Arabia's bad behaviour. Britain has historically played pretty dirty in this game as well.

      Now, you are exhibiting some of the symptoms of unsound reasoning. There is a whole menagerie of cognitive biases that may skew your perspective until you actively learn about them and challenge yourself.

      In the mean time, who exactly do think this is a 'power grab' by? And can you get a job with them?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Dave 126

        The people who have the most to lose from our disbelief are the ones who invested in carbon credits, renewable energy and their trading. It is already proven that without impressive taxpayer subsidy, wind and solar can't stand on their own.

        That's who is "grabbing power"!

        Again, the "Gnomes of Zurich" (Bankers, Politicians and Royalty) who could give a rats behind about the common man; institute rules and regulations (carbon taxes) that protect their own financial interests above those who have the most to lose.

        These people could care less if we are driven back to the stone age and wear hair shirts and live in caves as long as they make their money.

        The "Upper Crust" literally "own" the colleges and universities and dole out the grants or finances for "scientists". Thus they also control the results of these "studies", which then never contradict the playbook. No agreement with theory or topic, no finances for that researcher.

        We have been lied to too many times to believe their bull.

        1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

          Re: @Dave 126

          > The "Upper Crust" literally "own" the colleges and universities...

          Not where I live. Frankly, this sounds like conspiracy theory to me.

          1. Deltics

            Re: @Dave 126

            There is nothing inherently wrong with having theories.

            After all, this is the entire basis for the Climate Change industry. Just one, big, unproven theory (actually, periodically their theories are systemically DISproven by observation, so they simply cook up another new theory and offer THAT one as the new "consensus").

            The difference between that and "conspiracy theory" is ... what precisely ?

        2. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: @Dave 126

          >The people who have the most to lose from our disbelief are the ones who invested in carbon credits, renewable energy and their trading. It is already proven that without impressive taxpayer subsidy, wind and solar can't stand on their own. That's who is "grabbing power"!

          There will always be people who will attempt to turn any situation to their advantage. That is human nature. There will always be bureaucratic mismanagement. That too is human nature.

          However, these human failings say nothing about the validity of climate change one way or another. Indeed, as I said before, the logic of 'Who Benefits?' cuts all ways. If you are saying that some groups benefit from promoting a belief in climate change, then you should be able to accept that some groups benefit from promoting a denial of climate change. To be selective in how you apply your logic is intelectually dishonest.

          So, we should all be looking at the evidence without it being filtered through interested parties. That is easier said than done, I grant you, given that it is a complex subject. It becomes even thornier, given its very real geo-political implications. We've had wars over oil, trade dealings with unsavoury oil-producing nations, massively polluting manufacturing states, aid to countries where it seems unfair to deny them the same access to cheap energy in their development as we once did... the list goes on.

          1. Tom 13

            Re: There will always be bureaucratic mismanagement.

            If it were mere mismanagement you might have a point. It's not. It's deliberately funding the people you claim as non-partisan for precisely the reason that they ARE partisan. And yes, I HAVE been in the room when the head of the agency is explaining that because AGW is what is being funded, that's what we're going to push so we can get more money. Oh, like you they were so more adroit with their words, but I've always preferred blunt honesty.

        3. h4rm0ny
          Holmes

          Re: @Dave 126

          >>"These people could care less"

          I spot an American.

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: @Dave 126

          Couldn't care less.

          To care less implies you care in the first instance.

        5. Pompous Git Silver badge

          Re: @Dave 126

          The people who have the most to lose from our disbelief are the ones who invested in carbon credits, renewable energy and their trading. It is already proven that without impressive taxpayer subsidy, wind and solar can't stand on their own.

          Ah yes, the oil companies you mean; those purveyors of death and destruction. Like Shell who fund the Climatic Research Unit at U East Anglia and take old Phil out for free lunches (and God only knows what else). Evil Exxon who donated $100 million to Stanford for alternative energy research. Oil companies just love taxpayer subsidies and increasing oil prices. Anybody else notice that the more the alarmists scream, the greater the profits of "big" oil.

          "International Oil companies (IOCs) control less than 10 percent of the world's proved oil and gas resource base. Indeed the super-majors themselves account for only 3% of oil reserves and 2% of gas reserves, although they have 20% of production, through contractual arrangement with the NOCs."

          http://www.pwc.com/gx/en/oil-gas-energy/national-oil-companies/index.html

          NOCs is a term of art for Big Governments.

    5. jzl

      With the greatest respect, fuck you. Climate change is real, we need to do something about it, and people like you are part of the problem.

      Or do you think that there's a spare atmosphere lying around somewhere?

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        With the greatest respect, fuck you

        Doncha just love the level of the scientific debate from the alarmists?

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Lysenko

    Back in the 70's...

    ...I remember quite a bit of angst about a new ice age and the chaos it would cause for humanity. Turns out in an unprecedented feat of planetary engineering a coalition of coal miners and oil companies may have averted the disaster! Not a word of thanks either ...such ingratitude!! ;)

    1. RIBrsiq
      Facepalm

      Re: Back in the 70's...

      Ice age predicted in the '70s, eh...?

      Let me try to help you with that, and maybe a couple of other misconceptions:

      https://www.skepticalscience.com/argument.php

      Specifically:

      "The vast majority of climate papers in the 1970s predicted warming".

      1. AndrewDu

        Re: Back in the 70's...

        Well maybe.

        But some of us were actually alive and sentient in the 70's, and I clearly remember the newspaper headlines: they were just like today's, but with the opposite sign.

        1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

          Re: Back in the 70's...and I clearly remember the newspaper headlines

          You do know that newspapers != science, don't you?

          As I remember it one or two rent-a-gob "science journalists" were very active and those newspaper headlines were traceable back to them. But the increase in carbon dioxide was already very clear and its implications were being spelled out by almost anybody capable of understanding its spectrum.

          1. Pompous Git Silver badge

            Re: Back in the 70's...and I clearly remember the newspaper headlines

            But the increase in carbon dioxide was already very clear and its implications were being spelled out by almost anybody capable of understanding its spectrum.

            So along with the alarmists you believe that Modtran5 gets it wrong.

            http://modtran5.com/

            This "error" is supposedly due to water vapour feedback. My neighbour Mike Pook, Garth Paltridge and Albert Arking analysed millions of data points gathered by radiosondes to find the predicted changes in atmospheric humidity. They struck out.

            http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00704-009-0117-x#page-1

            It's also notable that the temperature changes predicted by Modtran5 are empirically close to spot on. No detectable difference due to theorised water feedback needed. A doubling of CO2 leads to ~1C. Definitely not 3-12C depending on which particular alarmist is currently pontificating about their computer sim which has got to be correct because it's so powerful it consumes as much electrickery as 10,000 households. Any bets on how many of those supercomputers are solar or wind powered?

            Try again.

          2. Pompous Git Silver badge

            Re: Back in the 70's...and I clearly remember the newspaper headlines

            As I remember it one or two rent-a-gob "science journalists" were very active

            Here's an extract from a book review from one of those "rent a gobs" from back then. Stephen Schneider was a climatologist at NCAR and until his death was a darling of the CAGW camp:

            It is a matter, as Schneider explains, of statistics. The last 15,000 years have been unusually warm when compared to global temperatures for the last 150,000. The last 200 years have been unusually warm when compared to the last 1,000. But there is considerable evidence that this warm period is passing and that temperatures on the whole will get colder. For example, in the last 100 years mid-latitude air temperatures peaked at an all-time warm point in the 1940s and have been cooling ever since.

            In 1974 Schneider and Bryson tried to explain to a White House policy-making group why conditions are likely to worsen. One of the most depressing anecdotes in the book is Schneider's description of the deaf ear their warnings received.

            So Schneider's strategy was to do a volte face and talk about global warming instead. Reid Bryson, the first person I have found writing about anthropogenic climate change and roundly criticised for it by scientists world-wide, became persona non grata. Sadly he largely remains so.

            1. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Re: Back in the 70's...and I clearly remember the newspaper headlines

              Forgot to mention the title of Schneider's book about the scary new ice age 'round the corner:

              Stephen H. Schneider, Lynne E. Mesirow (1976), The Genesis Strategy: Climate and Global Survival, Plenum Pub Corp; April 1976

          3. Tom 13

            Re: As I remember it one or two rent-

            Yes, we're all aware that Warmists can't remember anything that contradicts their religion. It was not one or two science journalists. It was EVERY Major publication, and mostly they referred back to peer reviewed journals. At the very least they were quoting leading scientific authorities in the field.

            In short, substitute "Coming Ice Age" for "Warmest Year on Record" with the appropriate adjective changes through the article and they read EXACTLY like this article.

            1. Pompous Git Silver badge

              Re: As I remember it one or two rent-

              It was not one or two science journalists. It was EVERY Major publication, and mostly they referred back to peer reviewed journals. At the very least they were quoting leading scientific authorities in the field.

              Nigel Calder, editor of New Scientist, made a TV show for the Beeb and wrote a book called The Weather Machine and the Threat of Ice. Calder wrote in 1974:

              They* tell us that the ice age could in principle start next summer... the odds shorten to something like 10-1 against. If even roughly correct, that is a very high risk indeed for an event that could easily kill two thousand million people by starvation and delete a dozen countries from the map.

              Rather foolishly I lent my copy to a warmist who subsequently burnt it. [sigh]

              * Climatologists

              1. h4rm0ny

                Re: As I remember it one or two rent-

                >>"Rather foolishly I lent my copy to a warmist who subsequently burnt it. [sigh]"

                I seriously hope that's a joke.

                1. Pompous Git Silver badge

                  Re: As I remember it one or two rent-

                  I seriously hope that's a joke.

                  Sadly not. The good news is it's readily available through Abe Books for $US7 or so post paid from UKLand so I will be purchasing a "new" second-hand copy..

                  1. h4rm0ny
                    Unhappy

                    Re: As I remember it one or two rent-

                    >>"Sadly not. The good news is it's readily available through Abe Books for $US7 or so post paid from UKLand so I will be purchasing a "new" second-hand copy.."

                    People who burn books...

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Back in the 70's...

          Odd, I was sentient then too. In fact, at school in the late 1960s, in Biology, we learnt all about the green house effect, the carbon cycle etc. and the extrapolation of the green house effect to something such as we are seeing now. in the mid-1970s, I was a biology student. At a rather deeper level we went through the same theories. I was a keen newspaper reader then too (learnt better since). My memory does not recall the sorts of headlines that you claim. But then, perhaps with my level of education and experience I read different newspapers and scientific journals from you.

          Later, I was a marine biologist and, again, changing sea currents and temperatures were the cause of our rather urgent attempts to understand why some very lucrative fisheries in the Southern Hemisphere were getting less lucrative, in terms of fish populations of certain species.

          Oh, really, I forgot the golden, nay, platinum rule of the internet:

          "Never argue with an idiot, onlookers might not be able to tell the difference."

          1. Pompous Git Silver badge

            Re: Back in the 70's...

            rather urgent attempts to understand why some very lucrative fisheries in the Southern Hemisphere were getting less lucrative, in terms of fish populations of certain species

            Discussed this with Bill Mollison of Permaculture fame back in the 70s. He said it made no sense to allow mature fish to be caught leaving the sexually immature fish in the ocean. Allowing fishermen to take the smaller fish while leaving the sexually mature fish in the ocean to breed more fish made much better sense. But obviously both Bill and I are not biologists and sexually immature fish will breed more fish than sexually mature fish. Care to explain how?

            1. BebopWeBop Silver badge

              Re: Back in the 70's...

              And of course on side effect of taking the larger fish is that there appears to be evolutionary pressure towards reducing the mean size of the population. I assume, simplistically, by allowing smaller, mature fish to breed competitively.

        3. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

          Re: Back in the 70's...

          > ... newspaper headlines

          As other have pointed out (and gathered downvotes for), newspaper headlines do not necessarily align well with with scientific consensus. The ice age prediction camp was clearly a minority back then.

          Newspaper pick the most sensationalist parts, they always have.

      2. h4rm0ny

        Re: Back in the 70's...

        >>"The vast majority of climate papers in the 1970s predicted warming".

        Whilst I wasn't in the habit of reading academic papers as a child, I do recall the general idea being that we were heading for another Ice Age and this being the popular theory. Skeptical Science may offer a handy Go To list of counter-arguments for when you encounter a (ironically) skeptic of AGW, but what they claim is at odds with my recollection.

        Also, is it worth pointing out that the article has a disconnect in it? It gives evidence that the Earth is warming (this is generally accepted) and then adds an assertion "this is down to greenhouse gasses". It is the latter that AGW skeptics are generally questioning. Arguing as if it's the former is a common error. If it is an error.

      3. Tom 13

        Re: Let me try to help you with that

        NO, let me help you with that. In the 1970s EVERY major media outlet led with stories about the impending ice age. It was the Environmental boogie man of the age meant like AGW is today. I still recall a prominent article about it in Ranger Rick magazine and all the scary mass people killing scenarios it described. AGW is EXACTLY the same thing except a different shibboleth.

        https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/1970s-ice-age-scare/

    2. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: Back in the 70's...

      >Back in the 70's... ...I remember quite a bit of angst about a new ice age and the chaos it would cause for humanity

      Indeed, Arthur C Clarke wrote, in 1956, a short story set in that scenario. Later however, as a keen scuba diver, I don't he much liked the idea of ocean acidification, either. Still, his role was to facilitate our own thinking about different possible futures, not to lay down a predictions.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Forgotten_Enemy

    3. MyffyW Silver badge

      Re: Back in the 70's...

      Hmm - fond as I am of vintage fashion, I nonetheless think a reliance on stuff pulled from the earth and burnt probably isn't the best long term plan for humanity.

      Don a swing dress, 'set' your hair and embrace the '50s glory that is nuclear power.

      1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

        Re: Back in the 70's...

        @MyffyW

        How is relying on nuclear power NOT "a reliance on stuff pulled from the earth and burnt"?

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: Back in the 70's...

          >>How is relying on nuclear power NOT "a reliance on stuff pulled from the earth and burnt"?

          Because inside a nuclear powerstation you wont find a big bonfire of uranium producing heat.

          Nuclear Fission =/= Combustion.

        2. MyffyW Silver badge

          Re: Back in the 70's...

          Thx @h4rm0ny.

          @allthecoolshortnamesweretaken does make the valid point that Uranium (and Thorium) are pulled from the earth too, but with breeder reactors and a sensible fuel cycle the reserves are substantially bigger than fossil fuels.

        3. jzl

          Re: Back in the 70's...

          > "How is relying on nuclear power NOT "a reliance on stuff pulled from the earth and burnt"?"

          The key thing is the second part. Nuclear power isn't burning and consequently there's no carbon dioxide released.

          We really need to get rid of our collective irrational fear of nuclear power. It represents pretty much the only viable short and medium term solution.

    4. Douglas Lowe

      Re: Back in the 70's...

      IIRC the new ice age was meant to start sometime before the industrial revolution really got going. I believe it is farming which most researchers credit with stopping us dropping into a new ice age. Which is a good thing, it's just a shame that the burning of fossil fuels threatens to send us to the other extreme instead.

  4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "Currently orbital conditions are suitable to trigger the next glacial inception. We’re due another ice age. However, as pointed out in a recent study in Nature, there’s now so much carbon in the atmosphere the likelihood of this occurring is massively reduced over the next 100,000 years."

    Back in the 60s/70s the prospect of another ice age was a concern. That was before global warming research became a global industry.

    Once in a while it's worth considering the reality of maintaining a status quo indefinitely and the alternatives of x metres of sea level rise vs y kilometres of ice.

    1. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Back in the 60s/70s the prospect of another ice age was a concern. That was before global warming research became a global industry.

      The prospect of another ice age was only a concern amongst the media (as popularised in the mid-70s in the papers and on both Blue Peter and Tomorrow's World). A review ten years ago found 77 research papers published between 1965-80 on the subject of climate change. Of those, 64 concluded that the climate was warming, 11 could draw no conclusions and just 2 concluded that the climate was cooling. It seems ice ages sell more newspapers.

      1. Grikath Silver badge

        well those papers were partially there because the Shouting about the Next Ice Age was a Thing...

        From what I can remember of the pop-science mags of my Youf, most of them agreed that we were indeed due for another ice age, eventually, and then proceeded on with Mammoths and Sabretooths, not unlike Dinosaurs today.. Mammoths and Sabretooths Sold..

        I do like the fact that the article presents the Roman Warm in context: conditions were most definitely not the same across the globe. Which only goes to show that things are a weeee bit more complicated than just "global temperature". And we still only need a decent Big Bang from a (set of) volcanoes to make things rather chilly.. Locally or globally.

        And really.. a couple of meters sea level rise won't kill the world... It may, however, inconvenience a couple of armchair activists who will find their comfy little safe world shaken up a bit. *shrug*

      2. Pompous Git Silver badge

        It seems ice ages sell more newspapers.

        And that's why the newspapers are pushing the global warming agenda. They want to sell less newspapers. [/sarc]

  5. Yugguy

    Bring on the warming!!!

    Vineyards and olive groves in the Midlands, no more Southerners.

    I'm not seeing a downside.

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Bring on the warming!!!

      I beg to differ. You do not want to be anywhere near western/north western Europe for the next 3 degrees of warming or thereabouts. All mathematical models point to weakening and potentially disappearance of the Gulfstream. It will become like the part of Newfoundland facing Greenland which is roughly at the same lattitude. Ever been there in Winter? Or to be more precise: do you want to be there in any time of the year?

      Now once we are past the 3 degrees global it should warm again, but that will take centuries (at least) even if we burn anything we can get our hands on.

    2. Drewc (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: Bring on the warming!!!

      We have vineyards in Kent already. Olive groves would be alarming though. Cherries will suit me fine.

      1. Flatpackhamster

        Re: Bring on the warming!!!

        You can grow olives in Kent in a good year. My dad grows figs every year.

        1. Yugguy

          Re: Bring on the warming!!!

          As a wise man once said..

          "Kent??? That's a spelling mistake isn't it?"

      2. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: Bring on the warming!!!

        The thing about Complex Systems, is that they are, er, complex. There could be a rise in the global temperature yet if the Gulf Stream, for example, when out of whack then Britain would get a lot colder.

        1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

          Re: Bring on the warming!!!

          then Britain would get a lot colder.

          It would help the winter tourist figures, if the Alps stayed green. Haggis and a pint of 80/- for apres-ski, though. Not sure if that's a plus or minus point...

      3. genghis_uk
        Thumb Up

        Re: Bring on the warming!!!

        There are a number of vineyards in Hampshire too. I also have (albeit small) olive bushes in my garden.

        As I live on the South Downs I look forward to having a seaside property - If the A3 and M3 flood it could even be an island for extra cool points :)

        Always an upside!

      4. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: Bring on the warming!!!

        We have vineyards in Kent already.

        Couple of things. Those grape vines are not likely to be the same varieties as were grown in the MWP. They will have been bred to mature in slightly cooler conditions.

        Nine years out of ten English winemakers need to supplement the must with sucrose, or use vacuum distillation. They have a special permit to do this as neither technique is allowed in mainland Europe.

        During the MWP a pound of sugar cost the same as the annual per capita GDP. Vacuum distillation wasn't invented until the 19thC. The Blackfriars had a daily stipend that included a gallon of wine each. Kent is a fair distance from the vineyards in Yorkshire.

  6. Pete 2 Silver badge

    So what are we supposed to think?

    Although it's a given that the Earth is getting warmer, the "approved" belief is that is could only be a bad thing.

    After reading this piece, there is doubt. Are we really warding off an ice-age? If so, surely that's good and if a bunch of ugly insects and a few cute, furry, things can't cope - well that's life! Many more ugly insects and cute furry things would become extinct in an ice-age, so aren't we doing them a favour?

    The real issue seems to be OMG! Change is happening! We're scared of change! We must stop it!". Without anyone being able to run the model forward to work out what the options or outcomes of more or less global warming would be. Maybe we should be cranking up the CO2 and CH4 emissions¹ - just think of the cute furry animals.

    [1] Just add water to make booze and free oxygen. What's not to like?

    1. Bullseyed

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      Completely agree. Most amusing for me is the clash of conservationism and evolution. Preventing things from going extinct is BAD if evolution is GOOD. So we need to make up our minds and take our pick. Species go extinct if climate goes up, down or stays the same. Death is a universal constant.

      Only thing I want to call out in your post is the headline. Any time anyone is telling you what you're "supposed to think" you can safely assume that person is a moron and move on.

      1. RIBrsiq

        Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        "Most amusing for me is the clash of conservationism and evolution".

        I guess you could say that, if your idea of evolution is to throw animals off of a cliff and expect them to evolve wings on the way down.

        1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: So what are we supposed to think?

          > ...throw animals off of a cliff and expect them to evolve wings on the way down.

          Agile evolution?

      2. James 51 Silver badge

        Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        It's the rate of death of species that should concern you. 60 million years from now if there is anything digging in this layer of rock it's going to look like a metor wiped out a huge chuck of life but there won't be any craters. A real head scratcher.

        1. Pompous Git Silver badge

          Re: So what are we supposed to think?

          It's the rate of death of species that should concern you.

          Oh it does! But before I explain:

          Loehle, C. and W. Eschenbach. 2011. Historical Continental Bird and Mammal Extinction Rates. Diversity & Distributions DOI: 10.1111/j.1472-4642.2011.00856.x

          Methods: We examined historical extinction rates for birds and mammals and contrasted island and continental extinctions. Australia was included as an island due to its isolation.

          Results: Only six continental birds and three continental mammals were recorded in standard databases as going extinct since 1500 compared to 123 bird species and 58 mammal species on islands. Of the extinctions, 95% were on islands. On a per unit area basis, the extinction rate on islands was 177 times higher for mammals and 187 times higher for birds than on continents. The continental mammal extinction rate was between 0.89 and 7.4 times the background rate, whereas the island mammal extinction rate was between 82 and 702 times background. The continental bird extinction rate was between 0.69 and 5.9 times the background rate, whereas for islands it was between 98 and 844 times the background rate. Undocumented prehistoric extinctions, particularly on islands, amplify these trends. Island extinction rates are much higher than continental rates largely due to introductions of alien predators (including man) and diseases.

          Main Conclusions: Our analysis suggests that conservation strategies for birds and mammals on continents should not be based on island extinction rates, and that on islands the key factor to enhance conservation is to alleviate pressures from uncontrolled hunting and predation.

          The Git is rather fond of birds. They are very good at eating insects that infest crops for example. Bats, too. Here in Tasmania the alarmists clamour has resulted in the installation of windmills that kill bats and birds. In particular, they kill Wedgetail Eagles at a greater rate than they reproduce; i.e. they are sending them extinct. Some 40% of the wedgies' diet is feral cats. Feral cats are wreaking havoc on our smaller birds, many of which are insectivorous and hence reduce farmers' chemical control needs. Bats are insectivorous also.

          While insufficient chemical insecticide remains on the crop to affect consumers (and these chemicals are now designed to break down fairly rapidly), the chemicals as used by farmers can and do affect their nervous system since they are nerve poisons. All of which is A Good Thing according to alarmists who want windmills to "save the planet". And who gives a fuck about farmers' health?

      3. John 104

        Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        @Bullseyed

        A hearty thumbs up to you, sir. I will remember your logical post tonight when I drink a fine North West (US) stout.

      4. Jagged

        Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        "Preventing things from going extinct is BAD if evolution is GOOD"

        - possibly, if we were talking about gradual change. Unfortunately the rate of current extinctions puts us on a par with the mass extinction of the past and we risk catastrophic collapse of eco-systems on which we depend.

        1. Pompous Git Silver badge

          Re: So what are we supposed to think?

          Unfortunately the rate of current extinctions puts us on a par with the mass extinction of the past

          How about a citation for that? Here are the major mass extinctions from the past courtesy of the Wiki-bloody-pedia:

          1. K/T extinction event. The Cretaceous/Tertiary extinction event ended the Mesozoic era and started the Cainozoic era.[4]

          2. End–Triassic extinction event.[5][6]

          3. P/Tr extinction event. The Permian/Triassic extinction event ended the Palaeozoic era and started the Mesozoic era.[7][8]

          4. Late Devonian extinctions, at the Frasnian/Famennian junction.[9]

          5. End–Ordovician extinction event. After a series of lesser events, the end-Ordovician extinction resulted in an estimated 84% species loss.[10]

          Compared with:

          "Only six continental birds and three continental mammals were recorded in standard databases as going extinct since 1500" doi: 10.1111/j.1472-4642.2011.00856.x

          http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/%28ISSN%291472-4642

          Are we talking about the same planet?

      5. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        >Preventing things from going extinct is BAD if evolution is GOOD.

        That's not how it works. And in any case, it is diversity that is considered good and resilient, not evolution per se. This isn't just for the benefit of the birds and beasts, but for us humans too - look at the Irish Potato Famine if you want an example of the hazards of a monoculture.

        >So we need to make up our minds and take our pick.

        That's based on a false premise.

    2. RIBrsiq

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      One problem with climate change, you see, is all the infrastructure and cities and stuff we've built on the assumption it will not change...

      1. Mark 85 Silver badge

        @RIBrsiq -- Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        One problem with climate change, you see, is all the infrastructure and cities and stuff we've built on the assumption it will not change...

        And therein is the issue... people don't want things to change. Yet, if they knew anything about archeology, they would know that empires/countries rise and fall, cities are built and then fall into decay. Change is neverending but no one wants to be a part of it. Ok... maybe except for what they deal with personally then change is good.. globally, not so much.

    3. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      > and if a bunch of ugly insects and a few cute, furry, things can't cope - well that's life!

      Stephen J Gould has addressed that issue in an essay, and for that matter, so has Frank Zappa in his song 'Dumb All Over'.

      The biggest victims of rapid change will be us and our descendants. Short term business thinking dictates efficiency, and efficiency is the enemy of redundancy and contingency plans - just look at the supply chain issues caused by earthquakes in Japan or floods in Asia.

      And for sure, there is a similar pattern mature ecosystems - competition leads to specialisation and an inability to evolve to fit a changing environment quickly enough.

      For sure, we could nuke or poison our planet back to slime and within a mere half billion years there could be some interesting multicellular fauna.

      Personally, I'd rather myself and my descendants to have the resources to have some fun.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      <i>"After reading this piece, there is doubt. Are we really warding off an ice-age? If so, surely that's good and if a bunch of ugly insects and a few cute, furry, things can't cope - well that's life!"</i>

      I guess you haven't heard about pollination, and how human agriculture depends on it.

    5. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      >The real issue seems to be OMG! Change is happening! We're scared of change! We must stop it!"

      That depends on where you live. For some people right now, climate change is a real threat, and their fear is valid.

      For sure, there will be some areas of the world where climate change, in any direction, will be bring some benefits- greater crop yields, for example. However, is the scenario is rapid change, even those short-term beneficiaries might quickly find their good fortune reversed.

      If you live in an area that has always had high winds, for example, or heavy snow, your architecture, infrastructure, methods of farming and customs will accommodate such events. With rapid change there is less time to adapt.

      Further more, there likely won't be a smooth transition from the status quo to a new scenario. Complex adaptive systems have pesky tendency to be turbulent during times of transition. You might have few years of heavy flooding, and adapt to that, and then find that you have a drought... so there wouldn't be any one optimal adaptation.

      And even if you are sitting pretty, there will be a knocking at your gates from poor sods who have found their lands uninhabitable.

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        For some people right now, climate change is a real threat, and their fear is valid.

        In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme predicted that climate change would create 50 million climate refugees by 2010. Question: Where are they hiding and why?

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: So what are we supposed to think?

          >>"In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme predicted that climate change would create 50 million climate refugees by 2010. Question: Where are they hiding and why?"

          A lot of the unrest in Syria that has resulted in many people fleeing the country was in part precipitated by drought in that country.

    6. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      >So what are we supposed to think?

      Thinking is a process, not a destination.

      Think. Read. Look at the diagrams. Read more. History, economics, sociology, biology, evolution. Information theory, philosophy, mathematics. Brush up on how statistics are used and abused. Read the works of the sacred cows, and of the iconoclasts and heretics. Psychology - who is a nutter? What are their motivations and biases? Draw parallels. Take a walk. Talk to different people in the pub. Play music loudly. Read more. Smell the flowers. Beware of conclusions that suit your circumstances. Draw some pictures. Think.

    7. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      You are supposed to think about it and form your own opinion.

    8. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So what are we supposed to think?

      Actually, there will be, all ready are, new insects migrating Northwards, not all of whom are benign. You may find sunbathing in December in GB a bit spoilt by the biting, stinging immigrants that come with it.

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: So what are we supposed to think?

        You may find sunbathing in December in GB a bit spoilt by the biting, stinging immigrants that come with it.

        My recollections of UKLand from the 1960s was that December was cold enough to give me frostbite. And no, I wasn't sunbathing. That was problematic even in the summertime. Of course back then the climate was maritime temperate. It must be so different now that it's maritime temperate instead of maritime temperate. Anybody else find the modern usage of "change" confusing?

  7. RIBrsiq
    Go

    A pleasant change to see proper science filed under "Science", at good old El Reg!

    Well done.

    1. Naughtyhorse

      science

      presumably lewis is still pissed from the xmas festivities and stuck in the stationery cupboard

    2. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Yarp. An article about the topic written by proper researches, lovely!

      And then two downvote trolls already rolled over the comments... [edit: and counting]

  8. drand
    Go

    I, for one,...

    ...welcome our temperate hippo overlords.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So it's not

    hippopotami what a lot of hippopotamuses! Then.

    1. hplasm Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: So it's not

      hippopotamaux...

      1. Marketing Hack Silver badge
        Headmaster

        Re: So it's not

        Hippopotamass sounds right to me.

        1. h4rm0ny

          Re: So it's not

          Hipotatoes?

  10. Flatpackhamster

    So let me get this right.

    The Mediaeval Warm Period wasn't warmer at all. So the fact that the Vikings were able to chop lumber in Greenland in the 10th and 11th century and grow crops in Greenland is not true. And the Roman period wasn't warmer either. So the vineyards at Hadrian's Wall didn't exist either.

    And the reason none of those things really happened is that Michael Mann ran a computer simulation of some data that had some results that didn't fit his agenda.

    Now I will admit that my expertise isn't in running computer simulations of data. My original background is archaeology. Roman archaeology in fact. So what I'd like to do is extend a challenge to the authors of this article. Grow a successful crop of vines on Hadrian's Wall. You can use modern vines, and modern viticulture techniques.

    And yes, I know, local =/= global. I just think a little actual practical testing of real world situations which can be confirmed by archaeological investigation would be more beneficial than yet another set of computer simulations.

    1. Flatpackhamster

      Re: So let me get this right.

      Just to add - some of the information is already out there. Why don't the researchers take a look at pollen analysis for archaeological sites across Europe and the ME for the last 2,000 years? Big job, I know - but this would give you a long trend indicative of temperature fluctuation. It would also, of course, show vegetation changes caused by humans. However, if your vegetation switches from birch forest to rye growing, you can be pretty certain that the people living there weren't able to grow wheat because it was too wet or cold.

      And if - IF - it is as warm now in Greenland as it was 130,000 years ago, plant a crop of what the Vikings were growing and see how you get on.

      1. jzl

        Re: So let me get this right.

        Maybe they have looked at that? But it wouldn't matter to you, would it? You'd just move straight on to the next thing because you're not interested in evidence.

        You're no better than those nutjobs who say the moon landings were a hoax, or the nutjobs who don't "believe" in evolution. You're defrauding yourself.

      2. Joe Werner

        Re: So let me get this right.

        "Just to add - some of the information is already out there. Why don't the researchers take a look at pollen analysis for archaeological sites across Europe and the ME for the last 2,000 years?"

        They do. Not sure if the authors of that article do it (sounds like they look at isotopes), but in general this is being done.... plus they say that it is in general as warm (globally) not specifically in any single region. The spatial heterogeneity of the climate...

        1. Flatpackhamster

          Re: So let me get this right.

          Can you point me to any examples of this? I'd like to see what they're finding out.

          It would also be interesting to see what's coming out of Chinese research too, since that experienced warmer temperatures aswell during the MWP. Obviously that's just regional rather than global. But there do seem to be a lot of regions affected by it - N America, E Africa, China, Europe. I wonder what point it counts as global.

      3. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: So let me get this right.

        Why don't the researchers take a look at pollen analysis for archaeological sites across Europe and the ME for the last 2,000 years?

        Excellent question. Why don't they also look at papers published in their own discipline? Such as Climate, Vegetation and Forest Limits in Early Civilized Times H. H. Lamb Published 2 May 1974.DOI: 10.1098/rsta.1974.0019

        Here's Figure 9:

        http://www.sturmsoft.com/climate/forest_grassland_limits.png

        Blessed if I know!

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: So let me get this right.

        I think you will find that that's an active area of science - you can even download data and try it for yourself https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/data-access/paleoclimatology-data/datasets/historical

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So let me get this right.

      "local != global"

      Well, they used to call it the Medieval Climate Optimum... and it seems to have been relatively warm in many (not all) parts of Europe (how warm / warmer than today? Not an interesting question, imho, better ask "why").

      Regarding the long term trends (millennia rather than decades), there is a temperature decrease in (much of) the Northern Hemisphere over the last 4000-6000 years (or so... I always get confused with the whole Before Present numbers and cannot be arsed to check now). This cooling follows the insolation changes in summer. At this time, glaciers started reappearing in Northern Europe (for example). It seems just fair to state that the mean climate state (average over a century or three) in the Roman times was warmer than over the last 100-300 years (with possibly the exception of the last decade or so). If you then put a ton of local variability over that - who knows. The authors of this article look at these really long (for me) time scales.

      Although I personally would really like to have more information about what the archeologists know about the past eras (or historians, they always dig up fun to read - after transcription and translation - texts...). I think working together would make sense for archeologists and climatologists, but I guess people use very different languages and some information is not easily turned into numbers...

      Mike Mann does not run simulations by the way, he mostly does linear regression (or used to, in the papers you think of)....

    3. Mephistro Silver badge

      Re: So let me get this right.

      "The Mediaeval Warm Period wasn't warmer at all."

      Read the second paragraph in the article, please. Summarizing it for you: "Locally warmer in the North Atlantic and Europe" != "Globally warmer".

      "Grow a successful crop of vines on Hadrian's Wall. You can use modern vines, and modern viticulture techniques.

      You mean, the way they're growing vines -and have been doing for some time- in Germany?

      " I know, local =/= global"

      The first paragraph in your comment clashes with this statement.

      1. Flatpackhamster

        Re: So let me get this right.

        @Mephistro - yes, grow them just like that. Germany and Scotland are not on the same latitude, not by a considerable margin.

        1. Mephistro Silver badge

          Re: So let me get this right.

          "Germany and Scotland are not on the same latitude, not by a considerable margin."

          You sure of that?

          "Edinburgh: 55° 57' N / 3° 11' W"

          Germany: "It lies mostly between latitudes 47° and 55° N"

          1. Flatpackhamster

            Re: So let me get this right.

            Oh, honestly. It feels as though you're deliberately missing the point. Maybe I should have phrased it differently to make sure it was clear.

            Where are the grape growing regions of Germany? Take a quick look online and you'll find out they are in the WARMEST parts of Germany. They are not in Kiel or Lubeck, but in the south-west of Germany around Stuttgart and Baden-Baden.

      2. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: So let me get this right.

        "The Mediaeval Warm Period wasn't warmer at all."

        Read the second paragraph in the article, please. Summarizing it for you: "Locally warmer in the North Atlantic and Europe" != "Globally warmer".

        See: Holocene elephant seal distribution implies warmer-than-present climate in the Ross Sea

        http://www.pnas.org/content/103/27/10213.abstract

        That's right folks; Antarctica was part of North America and Europe a thousand years ago. Bloody continental drift. Can't trust it.

  11. petecamp

    Hottest on record only if you're looking at the surface temperatures that have been adjusted upwards. The satellite record doesn't agree with the adjusted surface temperatures.

    See here for the comparison: http://realclimatescience.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/2016-01-20-13-31-07.png

    The green downward slope is the satellite record, the purple rising slope is the tampered surface record.

    Check out how 4 different adjustments to the surface record have turned a downward sloping trend into an upward trend: https://stevengoddard.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/gissustampering1999-20132.gif

    Note that this graphic doesn't even contain the tampering in 2014 or 2015 that has suddenly given us a "2015 is hottest ever!!!"

    It's pure Fraud.

    1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
      Facepalm

      > http://realclimatescience.com

      > It's pure Fraud.

      Yes.

    2. Burb

      "The satellite record doesn't agree with the adjusted surface temperatures."

      The different satellite records don't even agree with *themselves*. And do you have any idea what sort of 'adjustments' have to be made to satellite data to get anything half sensible out of the raw data? Not to mention that the process involves running what could only be described as a computer model, which doesn't bother me per se, but I thought such things were the spawn of the devil to your sort.

  12. Tom 7 Silver badge

    When Lancastrians stalked the earth..

    is that what the Eemian means?

  13. Drefsab_UK

    hmm 130k years, in human history is a long time but in geological perspective its not very long at all.

    1. chivo243 Silver badge

      Indeed

      "hmm 130k years, in human history is a long time but in geological perspective its not very long at all."

      We have been around for a tick on the geological clock which has been running for a while, and we think we're smarter than most monkeys... tsk tsk

      The climate has been fluctuating since forever. The geology of the Earth is constantly changing. The sun has been maturing.

      I'm 51, and I remember the sky being sooo blue when I was a kid. 30 years ago a friend showed me some photos, and I said to myself then, man that sky used to be blue. Now it's just a washed out faded like my jeans blue.

      I do not deny the weather is freaky deaky, but if it wasn't, if everyday was exactly perfect, I think a whole other group of scientists would be walking around in dirty robes with signs that say 'The end is nigh!"

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Indeed

        And your point is? Change happens. Some change matters not a lot, Some change matters quite a bit. Our attitude to climate is a bit like poking a sleeping giant with a stick. Maybe the giant will roll away from us and we get the gold in his stash, maybe it will roll towards us and we'll get crushed, or maybe he'll wake and get cooked. sometimes it's better to just play things safe, and stop poking.

  14. jzl

    Rate of change

    The rate of temperature change over the last few years is insane. Sure, the Earth has been hotter in the past. But it's not changed so fast before.

    The climate change deniers had better be damned sure of themselves. The stakes on this are as high as they come. And I don't see how they can be that sure of themselves, given the evidence.

    It's frustrating that climate change has come to be seen as a political issue. It's a scientific issue.

    1. The Axe

      Re: Rate of change

      Nice to call us deniers. We don't deny the climate is changing. What we disagree about is what is causing it.

      Is it changing that fast. We have lots of records for the last 100 years or so, nothing much beyond that. The climate might have changed quickly in the past, the proxy records can't show that.

      Are the stakes that high? Humans have filled Earth primarily because they are an adapatble species. We have adapted to the ice and adapted to the desert. We can adapt very quickly to anything the planet throws at us.

      What's made climate change political is the Greenies who demand that the planet change to their whims. They're the ones who have had laws created to force people to pay more for their energy - just so that the Greenies' favourite businesses can get subsidies.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rate of change

        Oh diddums. Don't call me a denier, it hurts the purity of my soul! Climate change 'denier' is to climate change 'sceptic' as 'creationist' is to 'intelligent design', or for that matter as 'warmist' is to 'scientist'.

        And why oh why are sceptics so uptight about 'forcing people to pay more for their energy' over any other form of taxation or spending. Last time I looked we pay a lot more in taxes for weapons, hell, we probably pay more in tax subsidies to maintain grouse moors for shooting than we do for green energy. Why not spend a little bit of your massive sceptical intellect fighting battles that matter - get Starpple to pay it's share of tax and we could go green and buy everyone in the country a pint of best with the change.

        1. Pompous Git Silver badge

          Re: Rate of change

          And why oh why are sceptics so uptight about 'forcing people to pay more for their energy' over any other form of taxation or spending.

          Probably more important to look at the impact of green energy policy on the third world. The burning of forests and peat soils to replace jungle with palm oil plantations in Indonesia for example. The palm oil is needed to meet the mandated biofuel requirements of the EU. This results in:

          1. Reduced habitat for orangutans

          2. The Asian brown cloud that distresses asthmatics as far away as Singapore

          3. Creates between 16 and 30 times as much CO2 as it saves.

          Way to go...

    2. Preston Munchensonton
      Stop

      Re: Rate of change

      The climate change deniers had better be damned sure of themselves.

      This is the religion aspect that AGW supporters love to deny exists. I suppose that makes carbon credits the new plenary indulgences.

    3. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Rate of change

      The climate change deniers had better be damned sure of themselves. <---- This is part of the problem in any discussion. The climate evangelists remind of the fundy Christians.. with their same argument.

      I'm not a denier nor believer. The term skeptic has been subverted to "denier". So maybe "questioner"? or "seeker of knowledge"?

      This is science, not religion. Not politics. There's going to be conflicting theories and arguments both ways. All the data isn't in yet... There's charges and admission of tampering with the data which don't help. Archeologists and historians are finally starting to weigh in with their input.

    4. Pompous Git Silver badge

      Re: Rate of change

      The rate of temperature change over the last few years is insane. Sure, the Earth has been hotter in the past. But it's not changed so fast before.

      Hubert Lamb, the father of modern climatology and the founder of the Climatic Research Unit at U East Anglia said that the Central England Temperature record is a reasonable proxy for the planet as a whole in relation to temperature change both in sign and rate of change; magnitude cannot be so inferred. Here are the annual changes in CET ranked according to rapidity:

      1. 1741 2.46C

      2. 1846 1.89C

      3. 1893 1.80C

      4. 1880 1.67C

      5. 1666 1.58C

      6. 1743 1.45C

      7. 1831 1.41C

      8. 1868 1.36C

      9. 1800 1.34C

      10. 1997 1.33C

      Why don't you take your head out of your arse and look at the actual data FFS?

      1. Burb

        Re: Rate of change

        Annual change ranked according to rapidity? What does that mean? Do you just mean year on year annual change? Isn't that just measuring noise?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rate of change

        What a good idea. Hubert Lamb was a great pioneer. CET is a fantastic dataset. It is a fair proxy, given that it's one data point on a big globe. Looking at individual year 'changes' in CET is fun, but obviously it's not only cherry picking but it's picking cherries one at time, slowly. Look at the overall trends.

        And when people say the rate of warming is higher now than it has been in the recent past we are talking about tens and hundreds of thousands of years. CET has gone up by just under a degree in the last 100 years, as compared to 'geological' rates in the recent past of 0.1/100 years.

        1. Burb

          Re: Rate of change

          "Looking at individual year 'changes' in CET is fun, but obviously it's not only cherry picking but it's picking cherries one at time, slowly. Look at the overall trends."

          Exactly. You would think that readers of this site might be a bit more scientifically literate than average and this stuff isn't all *that* difficult to understand. Yet at time of writing Pompous Git has 4 up votes and no down (though soon it will be 1).

          1. h4rm0ny

            Re: Rate of change

            >>"Exactly. You would think that readers of this site might be a bit more scientifically literate than average and this stuff isn't all *that* difficult to understand. Yet at time of writing Pompous Git has 4 up votes and no down (though soon it will be 1)."

            PompousGit has been posting citations, facts and reasoned argument. Who knows - maybe that appeals to the scientifically literate. You however, are simply downvoting them because you dislike their point of view. Which do you honestly think appeals more to readers?

            1. Burb

              Re: Rate of change

              And you are completely missing the point. His 'point of view' was to post a list of highest year on year variations (in either direction) in a discussion about rate of temperature change. The latter is clearly about multi-year trends not about how much change there is in a single year. In fact it is usual when looking at trends to smooth over a number of years to remove short term noise. This isn't a matter of opinion; what he posted didn't make any sense and that should be clear to anyone with a basic level of numeracy and scientific understanding.

              1. Pompous Git Silver badge

                Re: Rate of change

                The latter is clearly about multi-year trends not about how much change there is in a single year. In fact it is usual when looking at trends to smooth over a number of years to remove short term noise.

                Your wish is my command:

                Largest 50 year temperature changes

                1. 1733 2.55 C

                2. 1747 2.19 C

                3. 1928 2.15 C

                4. 1743 2.14 C

                5. 1737 2.09 C

                6. 1831 2.08 C

                7. 1789 2.07 C

                8. 1834 1.93 C

                9. 1863 1.92 C

                10. 1865 1.82 C

                Please note several things. Yes, this is numerology, but it's in response to numerological claims that temperatures are increasing more rapidly recently than in the past. Clearly that's untrue.

                Using the entire span of the CET is not cherrypicking. It's the longest multi-station record on the planet. There are only two other comparable length records, Armagh and Uccle. Both are single station records. Both give similar results to CET and using either would no doubt raise the accusation that I was avoiding the CET multi-station record.

                I gave Hubert Lamb's caveats about using the CET as a proxy for global temperature trends. Live with it.

                Given lamb's caveats, the Greenland and Antarctic ice cores also show similar results and are widely used as proxy for global temperature even though they are clearly restricted to the width of the ice core. The CET stations are much further apart than that.

                1. Burb

                  Re: Rate of change

                  "Your wish is my command:

                  Largest 50 year temperature changes"

                  I suspect you are still not getting it. You don't calculate rate of change - which is what we were talking about - just by picking two end points and differencing them.

                  1. h4rm0ny

                    Re: Rate of change

                    >>"I suspect you are still not getting it. You don't calculate rate of change - which is what we were talking about - just by picking two end points and differencing them."

                    How do you calculate rates of change, then? I thought it actually was finding the difference between the start point and the end point and dividing by time. If it's not, can you clarify how you do?

                    1. Pompous Git Silver badge

                      Re: Rate of change

                      How do you calculate rates of change, then?

                      I'm not the only one then... I was just about to throw out my slide rule and calculators!

                    2. Burb

                      Re: Rate of change

                      "How do you calculate rates of change, then? I thought it actually was finding the difference between the start point and the end point and dividing by time. If it's not, can you clarify how you do?"

                      You might do that for a very smooth data set, which shows no noisy behaviour, but that certainly does not apply to the CET set does it? You can see swings of 2 C year to year in CET. Even if the long term trend was of no change in temperature, you would still see such year to year changes. It is in the nature of it being local rather than global data and, in particular, local to England, which, because its geographic position, will inevitably see a lot of variation. Drawing a straight line between a high and low value that happens to be 50 years apart does not tell you anything because the noisiness of the data could mean that shifting your start point by one year could change the sign of your so called rate of change. Clearly that is not a robust measure of anything.

                      As for what you should be doing, you need to consider the data as a whole and use some sort of regression method, possibly in conjunction with some smoothing. Actually, what you probably would want to do is to consult with somebody with expertise in statistics and data analysis.

                      1. h4rm0ny

                        Re: Rate of change

                        >>"You might do that for a very smooth data set, which shows no noisy behaviour, but that certainly does not apply to the CET set does it? You can see swings of 2 C year to year in CET. Even if the long term trend was of no change in temperature, you would still see such year to year changes

                        Wasn't that the point of the exchange with PompousGit, though? They initially presented year by year data and you said they needed to take a longer view stating that it was normal to do so to smooth out trends and remove short term noise; so they then presented you with fifty year data points. You said that was wrong and when I queried why and you said because it is obscuring year to year changes - i.e. it was smoothing out noise. I'm not certain, but it seems that you're now damning it for what you initially said it was missing.

                        >>"Drawing a straight line between a high and low value that happens to be 50 years apart does not tell you anything because the noisiness of the data could mean that shifting your start point by one year could change the sign of your so called rate of change. Clearly that is not a robust measure of anything."

                        Well of course it would alter the rate of change - that's obvious. But that doesn't make it not a robust measure of something. You're effectively saying: "If you change what you measure, the results will be different, therefore it's not an accurate measure." I think PompousGit actually said the whole measurement process was "numerology" but that they were just posting it in response to someone claiming the rate of change was increasing and this supported AGW. I don't think they're posting the figures as evidence that AGW cannot be true, so much as showing one of the claims of evidence someone made was flawed. And you now appear to be supporting PompousGit if you say that it's "not a robust measure of anything", so are you actually agreeing with them on this?

                  2. Pompous Git Silver badge

                    Re: Rate of change

                    I suspect you are still not getting it. You don't calculate rate of change - which is what we were talking about - just by picking two end points and differencing them.

                    Now my plex is really perped! Fifty odd years ago it was. Is this a new New Maths? Definitely calls for a citation.

        2. Pompous Git Silver badge

          Re: Rate of change

          CET is a fantastic dataset. It is a fair proxy, given that it's one data point on a big globe.

          Actually it's rather more than a single data point. Armagh and Uccle are single data points. The recent warming is most definitely not higher than it has been in the recent past. See previous post on 50 year changes.

          When considering geological rates of change then recent rates pale into insignificance. The 8,200 event for example resulted in a ~3C* change in ~15 years, or at least that's what I learnt at university. I believe that the 8,200 year event has now been pinned down to a single year. Haven't had the opportunity to verify as yet.

          Greenland ice cores. Antarctic ice cores show ~2C.

  15. Hey Nonny Nonny Mouse

    Hippos in Britain?

    Good job I sold my Landrover...

  16. jzl

    And it's not complicated either

    The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere is rising. That's easy enough to measure.

    CO2 is a greenhouse gas. That's also easy enough to measure.

    So what the f*&k do you deniers think is going to happen?

    1. Flatpackhamster

      Re: And it's not complicated either

      Well if I increase CO2 in the atmosphere by 10%, how much will the temperature rise by? Exactly?

      The article is bizarre. It's claiming that it's hot enough NOW for hippos to live and breed in the wild in Britain as they did 130,000 years ago. That's the clear inference. Hippos live in a subtropical climate now. Now when I look out of my window and see the frost on my car the first word that leaps to mind is not 'subtropical'.

      There's the statement that sea levels were 6 metres higher 130,000 years at the same temperature. So are the authors saying there is NO link between temperature and sea level? Because they do seem to be with that statement. And that flies in the face of all the OTHER claims they've made about rising temperatures = melting ice caps = rising sea levels.

      If the temperature is the same now as it was 130,000 years ago, why aren't the sea levels 6 metres higher now?

      1. Mephistro Silver badge

        Re: And it's not complicated either

        "If the temperature is the same now as it was 130,000 years ago, why aren't the sea levels 6 metres higher now?"

        Well, big ice deposits need a long time to melt, don't they?

        1. Flatpackhamster

          Re: And it's not complicated either

          That's not what we're being told. We're being warned of very rapid sea level change.

      2. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: And it's not complicated either

        If the temperature is the same now as it was 130,000 years ago, why aren't the sea levels 6 metres higher now?

        Because temperatures were higher than present through most of the Holocene. See IPCC's First Assessment Report. Not available online, only on paper. The belief that temperatures now are higher than MWP, Roman Optimum, Minoan Optimum etc arrives with the second and later Assessment Reports. It never ceases to amaze me how much the temperature thousands of years ago changed by so much in four years of the 20th C.

      3. jzl

        Re: And it's not complicated either

        10%?? If only. We add 10% to the CO2 levels in less than twenty years at the moment.

        There is currently already 45% more CO2 in the atmosphere than there was 200 years ago. And it's only going in one direction and it's actually still accelerating. We're currently adding around 0.5% per year to the CO2 in the atmosphere.

        1. Flatpackhamster

          Re: And it's not complicated either

          It was a hypothetical.

          If the temperature is the same now as it was 130,000 years ago, why aren't the sea levels 6 metres higher now? Why are the sea levels for two time periods of supposed identical temperature so wildly different? 6 metres isn't peanuts.

          1. Burb

            Re: And it's not complicated either

            "If the temperature is the same now as it was 130,000 years ago, why aren't the sea levels 6 metres higher now?"

            Because it takes more than a century for that much ice to melt, that's why. Why are you having so much difficulty understanding it? Do you really think you have spotted something that noone else has? Or is it more likely that you don't know what you are talking about?

            1. Flatpackhamster

              Re: And it's not complicated either

              https://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/antarctic-sea-ice-reaches-new-record-maximum

              Antarctic sea ice reaches new record maximum, the highest area since 1979.

              Perhaps it takes a long time for that much else to melt, but it should at least be melting.

              1. Pompous Git Silver badge

                Re: And it's not complicated either

                Antarctic sea ice reaches new record maximum, the highest area since 1979.

                Perhaps it takes a long time for that much else to melt, but it should at least be melting.

                Indeed, the ice is melting. But that's less than half the story. Ice also accumulates through precipitation. Antarctica has been accumulating ice for in excess of a million years and I am happy to report that the go-ahead for the "million year core" has been approved, but funding has yet to be allocated.

                As well as melting, ice sublimates. That is it passes from the solid phase directly to the vapour phase. The main source of energy for this is sunlight and sunlight it will not surprise you to know is modulated by cloud cover. As was noted in IPCC AR4 "understanding of the physical processes that control the response of boundary-layer clouds and their radiative properties to a change in climate remains very limited."

                https://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch8s8-6-3-2.html

                Antarctic ice doesn't just melt from thermal contact with air and water hotter than 0C. It also melts from underneath from contact with both stable crust and magma. And as any fule kno the emission of magma from below the earth's crust is highly variable. How variable these emissions below Antarctic ice are is not known. We can't look directly and we have barely begun investigations in Antarctica.

                So, the upshot is, the quantity of interest here, net loss, or gain of ice is subject to a lot of guesswork. Unfortunately, an awful lot of research in Antarctica is "looking for the impact of anthropgenic climate change". That is, working toward a predetermined conclusion and that's a prime characteristic of pseudoscience. Bad news for those of us interested in climate change from a scientific POV.

                So when next you are told that climate change is just a matter of simple high school physics, hang onto your wallet. Whoever's saying that is either a fool or a con artist.

  17. G R Goslin

    Yet again

    Yet again, another "research" article equating opinion with data, and getting proof from conjecture. Excuse me if I don't believe a word of it

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yet again

      I don't believe in gravity, but my arse is still stuck to my chair.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Headmaster

    > were not dissimilar to preindustrial levels

    I had to parse that a few times before the meaning sunk in.

    "was similar to preindustrial levels" would have been infinitely clearer.

    I get that authors like to write floridly sometimes, but it should never be at the expense of clarity.

    1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
      Coat

      > "floridly"

      Did you mean "not unfloridly"?

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        > "floridly"

        Did you mean "not unfloridly"?

        Don't ageing Merkins retire to Floridly because the climate's warmer?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It’s official:

    It's a steaming pile of Voodoo Scare Science (patent and more taxes pending).

  20. Panicnow
    Mushroom

    Good Riddance to Lewis Page

    I note that Lewis Page has left the Register. I for one celebrate. His dishonest misrepresentations brought the Register into disrepute

    1. h4rm0ny

      Re: Good Riddance to Lewis Page

      I liked his articles. They provided very interesting analysis and a dissenting voice to the party line.

      1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

        Re: Good Riddance to Lewis Page

        > They provided very interesting analysis...

        "very interesting": yes (note we may understand "interesting" differently) , "analysis": no.

        Let me add that I find "Good Riddance to Lewis Page" extremely harsh, we are all just humans.

        1. Michael Thibault

          Re: Good Riddance to Lewis Page

          >extremely harsh

          Much too harsh.

  21. Alistair Silver badge
    Windows

    Sorry -- I'm with the flatpack at the moment.

    The article takes data points, extrapolates them. This is what science is supposed to do. Shortly after that some of the statements run off the rails.

    Do NOT get the idea that I am a climate change denier. Most definitely the climate we're living is is changing. Rather rapidly over the last 20 years of my experience.

    What is also (measurably) changing is the amount of C02 we're dropping into the atmosphere.

    Also changing - known variables in the climate models such as;

    total volume of arboreal mass (C02 eating material)

    total thermal values of water masses

    insolation variation levels both historical and current

    corrective variations in both historical and current measurements of localized temperatures.

    Now, I can look out my window at my spottily covered lawn that in *my* past would have had upward of two feet of snow on it at this time of year and say - yup - its kinda warm out there. So, yes dammit the climate is changing.

    As long as the IPCC supporting groups keep having to *change* values in the models *every single* iteration - then those models are not conclusive. Once we can run those models consistently without having to massage the data in inconsistent manners we'll have models that come close to being conclusive.

    What *I* and rather a *lot* of intelligent folks who do have basic comprehension of science are saying is that some of the *political* actions that are occurring are not in any way shape or form going to solve *any* of the issues we're concerned about with global warming. That some of the actions are motivated *solely* by financial gain of entities that will do the least they can but charge the most, justifying their actions by "save the children, save the planet". That the most efficient, most effective, and best understood technologies are being ignored in cases where they are truly the best interim solution. That decisions about climate based energy solutions are being made without contemplating .... the fact .. that ... CLIMATE IS CHANGING.

    The level of greed, ignorance and outright bigotry in regard the climate change issue and the political bullshit being spewed in *all* directions in the mass media by various groups of allied idiots is staggering.

    Yes the climate is changing. Yes - C02 numbers are sky-rocketing. Yes it shirley looks like C02 is to blame.

    But - the models don't work without *lots* of number management, the data values are being challenged by non climate types who have *every* reason to be listened to from their neck of the woods, scientists all. Yes 96% of climate scientists agree the climate is changing. **NOT** all of them like the data in the models.

    That intelligent, considered discussion is possible amongst some is a good thing. It helps if you have a clue about the systems involved, but committing to spending the equivalent of several dozen years of GDP to a solution *right here right now* needs to be done in a manner that will not leave our grandchildren destitute, starving, cold and in the dark.

  22. ibejohn818

    At least we have the solution the dinosaurs didn't have... Al Gore!

    Al Gore transcends the billions of years the Earth has survived and if we only give him enough money he will ensure that the Earth lives for an extra 2-5 days in its 10 Billion year life span.

    What's the problem bankrupting poor families with higher utility bills when there are days in the balance, I mean, compared to the liberal politicians and lobbyists that at their tit, these people have horrible and meaningless lives.......and, all the college girls seems to gather for climate change events.... so might as well get a blowy and save the earth from from disintegrating 5 days early

    1. Pompous Git Silver badge

      What's the problem bankrupting poor families with higher utility bills

      Bankrupting? A strange euphemism for killing people via energy poverty:

      Excess winter mortality (EWM) trends in England and Wales

      http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/subnational-health2/excess-winter-mortality-in-england-and-wales/2014-15--provisional--and-2013-14--final-/stb-ewm.html#tab-Excess-winter-mortality--EWM--trends-in-England-and-Wales

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        green tax = poverty = kills

        profit for energy company (about 20 times higher) = capitalism = trebles all round

        air pollution = emphysema = death

  23. Pompous Git Silver badge

    The alarmist argument

    What if I told you pedophilia is good for children, or that asbestos is an excellent inhalant for those with asthmatics, or that smoking crack is a normal part and a healthy one of teenage life, to be encouraged? You’d rightly find it outrageous, but there have been similar statements coming out of inexpert mouths, distorting the science. These distortions of science are far from trivial, our neglect of what may be clear and urgent problems could be catastrophic and now a professor of psychology at UWA has shown what he says is the basis of this unrelenting debauchery of the facts… [Robyn Williams, on The Science Show, Saturday 24 November 2012]

    Please provide evidence that any of the scientists listed here:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scientists_opposing_the_mainstream_scientific_assessment_of_global_warming

    has ever said anything remotely resembling "pedophilia is good for children, or that asbestos is an excellent inhalant for those with asthmatics, or that smoking crack is a normal part and a healthy one of teenage life, to be encouraged". It's amazing that anyone would believe gratuitous insult is "good science", but it would appear that climate alarmists can't tell the difference.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    this doesn't add up..

    After many years of browsing these stimulating forums, I felt compelled to ask a basic question that no-one seems to be asking.

    It is alleged it is as hot now as 130,000 years ago when hippos roamed these shores.

    If this is true, we should be able to relocate some hippos in to the wild and they should be able to survive here, because it is now as hot as Africa.

    Now, I am not calling into question scientific validity of arguments or whatever, but with a Bill Hicks moment of clarity, look at the argument at a basic level and think, is this really true?

    I'm sure Bill would agree with me it's just more bollocks. That is on the premise alone, I don't care what science says.

  25. Pompous Git Silver badge

    Peer reviewed science

    By my count (and I could be wrong) I have cited five peer reviewed climatological papers and referenced a standard climatology text. Despite the use of the word "science" and the phrase "peer review" by several alarmists, none have so far managed to present any evidence of such. Again, I could be wrong and will stand corrected if my error is pointed out. In the meantime,

    Hint 1: sceptic = a person who questions the validity or authenticity of something purporting to be factual

    Antonym: gullible = credulous, trusting, naive, innocent, simple, green

    Hint 2: You're not going to persuade a sceptic by parading your gullibility, or accusing sceptics of advocating pedophilia as good for children, or that asbestos is an excellent inhalant for those with asthmatics, or that smoking crack is a normal part and a healthy one of teenage life, to be encouraged.

    Of course you may just be setting out to prove that you donated your brain to science before you had finished using it...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Peer reviewed science

      Yes, you have selectively quoted a number of scientific papers. Clearly your wisdom is great. I bothered to follow through on your troposphere re-analysis paper. It took about 3 minutes on Google Scholar to see that a) the authors weren't as confident in their findings as you are, and b) subsequent work has demonstrated that their results were anomalous. That's how science works. You make some measurements to test a hypothesis. Someone else comes along and makes some more measurements. At the outer edge where measurements are few and far between, the likelihood of revision is high.

      Scepticism is a healthy thing, but scepticism based on the internet's echo chamber, in the face of fact, and in the face of multiple lines of evidence, isn't scepticism. Maybe apply some of that awesome intellect to actually going out and contributing by, idk, measuring something or actually doing some work of your own?

  26. Pompous Git Silver badge

    Hottest temperature ever

    From WUWT:

    Global Average Temperature for 20th century = 57°F

    Global Average Temperature for 1997 = 62.45°F

    Global Average Temperature for 2015 is 1.62°F + 57°F = 58.62°F

    My take:

    In my universe, 58.62°F is lower than 62.45°F by 3.83 Fahrenheit degrees. In the alarmist universe 58.62°F is higher than 62.45°F by 3.83 Fahrenheit degrees. Doncha just love averages of averages?

    Source:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/01/21/failed-math-in-1997-noaa-claimed-that-the-earth-was-5-63-degrees-warmer-than-today/

    1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

      Re: Hottest temperature ever

      > http://wattsupwiththat.com

      Oh, pretty please! What's next, citing FauxScienceSlayer?

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: Hottest temperature ever

        Oh, pretty please! What's next, citing FauxScienceSlayer?

        That's somewhat below your usual standard of comment GrumpenKraut. care to explain why the messenger is more important than the message? Anthony Watts seems hardly in a position to have changed the NOAA's numbers, or am I missing something?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Hottest temperature ever

      Hmm, applying Occams razor, who is likely to be wrong? An 'independent' individual or NOAA and the Met Office?. Just looking at Watts article highlights an increasingly desperate melange of numbers, revised numbers and straw clutching designed to prove, apparently that if a 100 year average was X and a 30 year average, in the latter half of in a rising series, was > X, then all numbers are imaginary. Which is really failed maths.

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        Re: Hottest temperature ever

        then all numbers are imaginary. Which is really failed maths.

        You rather seem to miss the point that the numbers are the NOAA's numbers, not Anthony Watts'. I agree that it's failed maths.

      2. FreeBrad

        Re: Hottest temperature ever

        Maybe you would like to ask Galilleo?

  27. Schultz
    Thumb Up

    I enjoyed reading this article

    It contained facts that were new to me (entertaining ones too, Hippos!). It gave an interesting geological perspective, outlining similarities and differences to today -- but without forcing any speculative conclusions on us. I don't understand why so many commentards unload on this article, it leaves it to the reader to make the comparison and decide if those parallels are scary or irrelevant.

  28. tojb
    Thumb Up

    Milankovitch cycles, interesting

    Thumbs up as I was prompted to read about gradual changes to Earth's orbital parameters (~20k years to notice anything), which I had previously been unaware of.

    Caused by interactions of the earth-moon system with larger but distant bodies such as jupiter. Orbit is not circular or even reliable eliiptical but actually very bonkers and semi-chaotic spirograph.

    All of which is at best tangential to the contemporary climate-change debate.

  29. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

    The surprising thing...

    ...about this 'record'...

    ...is that it wouldn't have been a record last year. Because it depends, not on the temperature rising, but on the 'adjustments' which are being made to past data. NOAA maths is (intentionally?) difficult to understand, but everyone can remember the huge rise around 1997, when there was a big El Nino?

    Looking at the 2016 NOAA figures, 2015 appears to be 1.6 Fdeg above 1997. BUT, looking at the 1997 figures, 1997 appears to be 4 Fdeg ABOVE the currently reported figure for 2015.

    This is due to NOAA 'adjustments'. They are adjusting earlier figures downwards, so as to achieve a continual series of 'records'. It is instructive to note that, if you look at the raw data from the US Climate Reference Network (which a sub-set of stations all well placed so that they do not need corrections of any kind) then 2015 is the THIRD hottest year...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The surprising thing...

      Yawn.

      1. Adjustments to the record have reduced the trend, not increased it, but why let facts spoil a good internet rant.

      2. The US climate reference network is a US network. Last time I looked at a globe there were quite a few bits that weren't the US.

      3. The USCRN is only about 15 years old...

      4. USCRN data like any other dataset is subject to correction and adjustment as ongoing work identifies issues and works to improve data quality.

  30. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

    I have a couple of problems

    "However orbital conditions were very different – essentially there were much larger latitudinal and seasonal variations in the amount of solar energy received by the Earth."

    Yeah, wonderful. Tell us the planet was orbiting differently to today then link to the font cover of the Encyclopaedia Galactica instead of to the relevant scientific statement demonstrating how we know this and why it was different then to now.

    "So although the Eemian was warmer than today the driving mechanism for this warmth was fundamentally different to present-day climate change, which is down to greenhouses gases.

    So this is demonstrable scientific fact now? Really?

    I really don't have a problem with accepting that the climate changes. I do have a problem with how some people think it's changing and what they think are the causes, whether we puny humans can or should be doing anything about it and whether the "solutions" are better for us in the long run than the "problem".

  31. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

    The last time it was this hot..

    ...was 2010. And then before it was 1997. Both of these years were MUCH hotter than 2015. According to NOAA's own figures at the time.

    This article is a set of lies.

    Though I concede that hippos were living in Britain the last time it was as hot (in 1997 and 2010. In Whipsnade...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The last time it was this hot..

      And have you published your insights into global temperatures? Do you measure them yourself, or do you use extispicy?

      The article examines the global temperature record and makes an observation. If you consider it a pack of lies you presumably distrust either the modern measurements, or the past ones, but if you don't trust the measurements and the proxies, in what way are you qualified to say whether it is right or wrong. Maybe it's actually hotter than you think? Maybe it's colder? What can you believe? As you don't believe the accumulated measurements of thousands of technicians and scientists, how can you possibly comment on whether it was a lie or wasn't a lie?

    2. Pompous Git Silver badge

      Re: The last time it was this hot..

      Yes, the "hottest ever" claim is being made here in Tasmania. The winter was the coldest in 60 years. How hot's that? There wasn't a single hippo to be seen anywhere!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The last time it was this hot..

        Well my office is quite cold and there are no hippos in it either. Of course the fact that if there was one me or my ancestor might have shot it and had hippo steak fotr tea doesn't affect their distribution in any way

  32. FreeBrad

    Lies, Damned Lies; and statistics

    No true scientist would write an article like this without mentioning that the real reason that it is so warm is because we are experiencing the strongest el-nino that we have had in a generation. This article is nothing but slight of hand propaganda capitialising on a freak weather event.

    By virtue of the fact that releases of Co2 displace water vapour and other atmospheric gasses, coupled with its minimal global warming potential, anthropogenic co2 is more likely to reduce the temperature than increase it. Although in truth we could not release enough of it to have a significant impact either way.

    1. Pompous Git Silver badge

      Re: Lies, Damned Lies; and statistics

      By virtue of the fact that releases of Co2 displace water vapour

      Well, that's a new one for me! Citation, please.

      As to the amount of CO2 we could generate, that would be limited by the amount of fossil carbon available and the willingness to convert it to CO2. There's at least 350 years' worth of coal that could reasonably used as fuel by recent estimates. Burning all of that coal in a few weeks would in all likelihood be just enough to double the CO2 level in the atmosphere. The CO2 level would of course then commence to fall as it was taken up by the biosphere. I somehow doubt that this scenario will play out. I know some of our politicians are crazy enough to do such a thing, but then they also have a very poor grasp of the logistics that would be involved.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Lies, Damned Lies; and statistics

      Dancing on the head of that pin won't work. I didn't hear the people trumpeting 'the hiatus' (which wasn't) accepting La Nina as a counterbalancing explanation. Even if El Nino bumped things up a bit, we would get to the Hippocene within a year or two. 2014 wasn't an El Nino year, and managed 0.9 degrees.

  33. Pompous Git Silver badge

    Temperatures outside the US

    Somebody earlier complained about the use of US temp data. Here's some data from NASA for stations outside the US I obtained some time ago. I recall feeling particularly sorry for the inhabitants of Bogurany. Their demise didn't even rate a mention on page 3.

    WMO No. WMO station name Month Average temp

    292820 Bogurany USSR Jun 1982 110.8 C

    606800 Tamanrasset Algeria Jan 1995 96.0 C

    718467 Fort Hope Canada Aug 1919 99.9 C

    300540 Vitim USSR July 1990 78.6 C

    294300 Tomsk USSR Jan 1981 76.9 C

    298660 Minnsinsk USSR Sep 1982 72.9 C

    284930 Tara Apr 1982 73.1 C

    339150 Askanija-Nova May 1980 80.3 C

    612910 Bemako Mali May 1995 50.0 C

    401000 Beirut Lebanon Feb 1868 93.2 C

    612140 Kidal Mali Apr 1972 50.7 C

    333770 Lubny Jun 1977 79.2 C

    343910 Aleksandrov-Gaj May 1977 64.1C

    387500 Gasan Kuli Nov 1977 109.4 C

    335620 Vinnica Mar 1978 73.4 C

    208910 Hatanga/Khatanga USSR Dec 1979 28.8 C

    555910 Lhasa China Mar 1996 84.0 C

    631250 Djibouti Somalia Nov 1994 69.0 C

    357960 Balhas/Balkahash USSR Dec 1994 31.1 C

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Temperatures outside the US

      Gosh, so back in 2002 you found some data on a website that had some errors? And obviously you know that they haven't been corrected, that those points amongst millions of other points have affected the model, and that therefore what? Seems to me the logical point is that even with datasets that erroneously assumed some places were 60 to 70 degrees warmer, and 2015 was still hotter, therefore global warming is worse than you think.

  34. AndrewDu

    When did El Reg become a shill for the warmists?

    What a shame.

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