Talk:Global warming/Archive 5

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Opponent Proponent

Well, it is my personal opinion but I find the opponent proponent introduction slightly unsuitable for an encyclopedia definition. I think (again, my opinion) that it is much better to just define what global warming is. From the description of global warming, one could deduce who is a proponent and who is an opponent.

(William M. Connolley 17:00, 2004 May 21 (UTC)) I have a lot of sympathy for this POV. Go blame Uncle Ed who did it

In summary, I think that defining global warming in the terms of proponents and opponents just does not sound very scientific. It sounds like this is an issue of taking sides rather than a scientific problem.

That's naive. It's both. (Comment by Lumidek: I fully support this viewpoint. Global warming is an unproved hypothesis that has its proponents, and it also has its opponents, as the article shows - much like any other scientific conjecture, especially any conjecture with clear political implications.)

Of course, this might have been already discussed but I have not bothered to check the archives (I take the blame). I know that it would be much better to write something when I criticize things but I don't have enough determination to do that... :)

Oddly enough, GW is somewhat contentious and does have a history. Check it.NEUH NEUH NEUH


Ed's eds

(William M. Connolley 17:08, 2004 Mar 12 (UTC)) Not too keen on Ed's recent changes, but I've made an attempt at a first section we can both live with.

But, w.r.t. the NH T graph, Ed is simply wrong. So: Ed wrote:

Previous quantitative reconstructions show temperatures as having fluctuated up and down over the last 1,000 years, correlating closely with variations in the amount of sunlight received by the earth.

and

In the late 1990s, the IPCC revised its presentation of the temperature record and began showing a "Hockey Stick" shaped graph

I suspect all this comes via Daly, but that doesn't matter. The graph that appeared in IPCC TAR (2001) was from Mann '98 (and others from about then) and was the *first* Quantitative hemispheric reconstruction. The graph Ed is thinking of from IPCC 1990 was a *schematic*. IPCC 1995 didn't use it, but did use a record from, I think China - not a hemispheric record.

Come on Ed, prove me wrong: find one of these "previous" reconstructions.


(William M. Connolley 17:15, 2004 Mar 12 (UTC)) I knew I'd written this all before: from Temperature record of the past 1000 years:

"Skeptics complain that the IPCC had previously accepted a temperature record which showed large natural variations such as the medieval climate optimum and the Little Ice Age, but unaccountably selected a different set of data that fit its preordained conclusions. Such skeptics have presumably failed to notice that the graph used in the earliest (1990) IPCC report was a schematic (non-quantitative; as discussed above): the 1990 report further noted that it was not clear "whether all the fluctuations indicated were truly global". The graph disappeared from the 1992 supplementary report, and was replaced in the 1995 report by a northern hemisphere summer temperature reconstruction from 1400 to 1979 by Bradley and Jones (1993); this in turn was updated in the 2001 report to northern hemisphere warm-season and annual reconstructions from 1000 AD to present by Mann et al (1999), Jones et al (1999) and Briffa (2000) [5]. "

It's just not possible to have an edit war, if the "other side" won't play! Dr. Connolley, your geniality has cooled me off once again, just when I was getting warm to the subject.... --Uncle Ed 18:34, 12 Mar 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 19:20, 2004 Mar 12 (UTC)) Sorry. I too was looking forward (?) to a big fight :-) Now I'll have to go and do something useful on Wind/Atmos Circ. Well actually I'm oging to help Miranda do her puzzle, but after that...

hypothesis vs theory

i'm not trying to start an edit war with hypothesis vs theory. Deciding whether something is only a hypothesis or a body of theory is not easy, and partly depends on what is accepted by the scientific community, also on whether there is a set of mathematical statements matching a whole lot of experiments which all fit nicely together.

(William M. Connolley 17:52, 2004 Mar 31 (UTC)) Yes, please lets not start a war on this.

But the previous version of the article had too much of confusion between theory and hypothesis - remember the latin origin of hypo thesis - a hypothesis is a little thesis, it's on the way to a theory, but not there yet.

(William M. Connolley 17:52, 2004 Mar 31 (UTC)) Lets keep the word games out it. Philospophical nicities distinguishing T and H aren't relevant here. In practice, there is little difference in whether a given thing is described as theory or hypothesis. But describing something as "a hypothesis because its not yet accepted as a theory" is unacceptable to me.

i disagree with the statement about practice, this is most likely a question of what social group is using the language. i happen to be a scientist (e.g. http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+roukema/0/1/0/all/0/1) and among my colleagues there is a big difference between theory and hypothesis. My perception of the use of the words is consistent with what's in the entries theory and hypothesis. Boud 14:49, 2 Apr 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 19:05, 2004 Apr 2 (UTC)) I've just had a quick look at the wiki articles on T and H. T is: In sciences, a theory is a model or framework for understanding but hypothesis is A hypothesis is a proposed explanation for a phenomenon - and I really don't see how, from that, you can unambiguously call GW one or the other: it fits both.

There's some danger for NPOV in claiming which statements, claims are hypotheses and which constitute theory. IMHO, the NPOV would be to state that anything controversial is a hypothesis,

(William M. Connolley 17:52, 2004 Mar 31 (UTC)) This is itself POV as far as I'm concerned.

unless it is uncontroversial that most scientists accept some body of statements as theory. This is in some sense a sociological statement, and that's what NPOV often is - we say that "X says A" and "Y says B" are uncontroversial facts, but A and B themselves cannot be presented as facts in the wikipedia.

Similarly, if "90% of scientists say that hypotheses A are well established according to experiments and constitute theory" and "2% of scientists say that B is true", it would probably be NPOV to say that A is theory and B is a hypothesis.

(William M. Connolley 17:52, 2004 Mar 31 (UTC)) This is spiffy but how are you going to know what 90% of scientists say? Don't you realise that argumetns about that precise point have afflicted this article in the past. Perhaps you'd be happier looking at scientific opinion of global warming.
i have to accept your point about arguments in the past, i don't feel like digging through them (and the people working on it clearly did an excellent job on the substantive part of NPOVing it, i am really impressed - congratulations to all - the hypothesis vs theory thing is IMHO like correcting some obvious grammar/spelling mistakes - useful, should be done, but not the tough part of the work). Anyway, the way to know what 90% of scientists say (well, at least somewhere in that direction) is to look at documents published by people who are formally recognised scientists.
(William M. Connolley 19:05, 2004 Apr 2 (UTC)) Thank you for that. I understand you not wanting to dig through the past... The problem is, I know I can write on these pages what 90% of climate scientists think. But I cannot prove that this is so, and people who don't like GW will just object on POV grounds.
However, given that the page scientific opinion on climate change does exist, it might be better to have non-ambiguous language on that page and leave the ambiguous language on the main global warming page. Confusing hypothesis and theory is ambiguous, because if both of them mean something which is a speculative statement, not yet widely confirmed by empirical evidence and not yet having obtained near consensus among the scientific community, then it is unclear when theory, in the scientific sense is being discussed. Boud 14:49, 2 Apr 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 19:05, 2004 Apr 2 (UTC)) If I were to assert that GW *has* achieved near-consensus within the scientific community (and hence entitled to be called a theory, by your defn), how would you know whether this was true or not?

Maybe some of this sort of discussion should go to an NPOV FAQ after it's sorted out?

(William M. Connolley 17:52, 2004 Mar 31 (UTC)) If.

It would probably be better that people who've been working on this article sort this out in this case, since you probably better can summarise what fractions of the scientific community are enough to decide what is theory and what is just hypothesis. BTW, in general i find the article very good, excellent in fact. :) But also :( because it's a sad topic.

Boud 13:45, 31 Mar 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 17:52, 2004 Mar 31 (UTC)) In accord with my comments above, I've reverted a fair bit. Also, its inappropriate to wiki every instance of the word "theory".
Sure, not all instances of theory need to be wikified, but since people don't seem to be aware of the meaning given to the word by scientists (and by wikipedia), i thought it might be good to encourage people to find out what it means. For example, general relativity (GR) is definitely a theory for scientists (i would be surprised if you can find any physicist or any other physical scientist who says that GR is not a theory); but it's also very definitely confirmed by experiment in many ways, it is definitely much, much more than a hypothesis. Anyway, if wikipedians interested in this page want it to look ignorant about basic scientific terminology to scientists who read the page, so be it. Boud 14:49, 2 Apr 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 19:05, 2004 Apr 2 (UTC)) I think you are coming to this with a somewhat different scientific background to me. My end point of this is that T and H are ambiguous words; its not possible to say definitively that GW should be considered one or the other. I think we are closer to agreement than all these words might suggest.

§ I have another understanding of these two words. One of the requirements for a theory is that it be a logically coherent system. If someone proposes a theory and someone else finds a logical flaw, then the theory is shot down (or perhaps the logical flaw is corrected). A hypothesis, according to my understanding, can be nothing more complex than an idea, such as, "I think I know why the glaciers are disappearing...." [P0M]

(William M. Connolley 16:52, 2004 May 12 (UTC)) OK, thats nice, then GW is a theory not a hypothesis...

§ One other thing needs to be understood by people reading this article: It is never possible to prove a theory because you may examine all the swans in England, expand your range to Eurasia, and offer the theory that "All swans are white." You may wander over thousands of square miles of swan territory and never find a swan that is not white -- until you go to Australia, where the first swan you see will very likely be black. Theories are required to be falsifiable. In the above example, the theory is falsified with the discovery of just one non-white swan. This understanding is important because people are very frequently put off by scientists who announce that their old theory was wrong. People think there is something wrong when this happens, when in fact it is what is supposed to happen, what needs to happen to advance knowledge.

(William M. Connolley 16:52, 2004 May 12 (UTC)) Stuff like that belongs in philosophy not science.
§ Actually, the discussion of "what is a scientific truth" belongs in the philosophy of science. It's not an idle fancy either. For instance, the development of the modern concept of space can be traced back to Leibniz and from there to Kant and then to Einstein. Tidying up our ideas about what we mean when we say something like "at x, y, z, t such-and-such takes place" can be very productive sometimes.

§ The more complex the phenomena being investigated, the more difficult it is to find out the truth about it. So maybe the article needs a paragraph about "substantiation." P0M 21:53, 11 May 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 16:52, 2004 May 12 (UTC)) ?
§ Newtonian physics has been tested over and over again and so people have very good reason to trust its predictions when planning a battleship or whatever. It has been very well substantiated over the scale of operations that people had experience of up to that time. But, when used in deal with, e.g., velocities up to a substantial fraction of the speed of light, it can give incorrect predictions. So Einstein developed his Special Theory of Relativity to make correct predictions over velocities up to C. Basically, by "substantiation" I meant the process by which one begins with a hypothesis, e.g., "I'll bet the globe is warming up because we're putting so much extra carbon dioxide into the air," builds it into a coherent account that jibes logically with the other things we think we know about the world (e.g., carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas), emends it when the "gotchas" appear (e.g., when carbon dioxide is added to the atmosphere, trees grow faster therefore removing some of the excess), challenges it with alternative explanations (e.g., the world is really getting warmer because of increased ensolation), and finally arrives at a set of empirical generalizations that allow one to make dependable predictions (e.g., tell what the temperature of the world will be at some time in the future given the current and projected rates of carbon dioxide production). P0M
§ But it is also possible that an otherwise satisfactory theory falls apart when variables go out of the range that had been experienced prior to developing the theory. When the temperature of the world reaches a certain point something might "flip" and the theory would no longer make accurate predictionjs. So it is important to know that substantiation never really ends, unless the process comes up with an unambiguous negative result. P0M

Isn't this discussion a bit "angels on the head of a pin"-ish? If a theory can only be proved by experiment, as suggested above, then clearly a hypothesis about past or future trends in climate and whether or not human activity is contributing to any changes, is not going to achieve the status of "theory". All we can do is look at the evidence and see if it supports the hypothesis or not. Hopefully we won't wait for the theory to be "proved" before taking action. The trouble with Global Warming is that it is a branch of politics rather than science, and one's views on it often chime with one's politics rather than the hard evidence

81.152.194.25

Intent of IPCC

Cut from article:

The reports are intended to reflect the consensus of the published science.

It's not clear at all what the IPCC really intends. Some people believe that it is sincerely dedicated to objective analysis of scientific data. Others hotly contend that it has been completely biased from the start and exists only to promote the Kyoto Protocol.

Indeed, there is some evidence that the IPCC has frequently ignored scientific objections to the GW theory. --Uncle Ed 13:57, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 15:17, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)) Ed, Ed, Ed: are you having a bad day and feel the need to take it out on the GW article? I (I think) wrote the sentence above as a deliberate sop to you and those like you, instead of "the reports reflect the consensus". And why do you go back over the quant recon stuff still without finding an example of your POV?
If you want to give me anything, how about some neutrality? Say that the IPCC claims (or asserts) that its reports reflect the consensus of the published science. --Uncle Ed 00:53, 16 Jul 2004 (UTC)

The Ed Poor wars (cont)

(William M. Connolley 15:36, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)) This is mostly addressed to Stevie, wh thought Ed's comments were OK.

Ed added:

Scientists universally agree that, until the twentieth century, every period of global warming has been followed by a period of global cooling and that for all of human history the average yearly temperature has remained within a range of a few degrees (Centigrade).

This is a combination of the vacuous (warming follow cooling follows warmings) with the dodgy (avg T within a few degrees C - are we forgetting the ice ages?).

The place for discussion (discussion? err description?) of the temperature record is Historical temperature record

Ed added:

A 1998 article in Natural Science sums up the generally accepted observation of climatologists: Mean temperatures rose steeply in the decades before 1940 and dropped from 1940 to about 1975. [1]. This is tendentious: SEPPs views are a small minority.
Wait a minute, William! Are you saying it's not generally agreed by climate researchers that temps climbed up to 1940 and fell somewhat afterwards? If there's a contrary view, please add it!! --Uncle Ed 00:56, 16 Jul 2004 (UTC)

And so forth.

I don't give a whiff about the specifics. Only address in Ed's changes those that are POV and delineate the changes you want. Reversing all his efforts is tantamount to vandalism and suggests you have a personal beef with him. -- Stevietheman 15:58, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 16:33, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)) If you don't care about the specifics, go somewhere else. Ed put the above in. You said it looked OK to you. I pointed out what was wrong with it and removed it. You... well, what *do* you think about the points above?
First of all, full reverts are done all the time, and do not amount to vandalism. People make large, junky edits quite often, and I've reverted them wholesale quite often without significant complaint from anybody.
In this case, most of Ed's edits were definitely POV and clearly written to be skeptical. The sources he quotes and the definitions he choses are highly biased. I think a full revert was fine, since the incidental changes that weren't POV were not really that important. Graft 16:55, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Revert only the bits that you disagree with, not the whole thing. It can't all be wrong. Stop the personality war you have with Ed and care more about the interests of the Wikipedia. -- Stevietheman 17:07, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)


Actually, I can't find anything in Ed's text that I would want to keep. It's just not appropriate text. This has nothing to do with Ed Poor's personality, it has to do with the fact that the edits are simply POV. I don't know why you have to be such a jerk about this.
His major edits were including text about periods of warming and cooling and average temperature variance, which WMC discussed above; a discussion about disputes over temperature trends, where he overemphasizes the skeptics and implies that a vehement debate still continues, including for example Singer's urban heat island dispute, which has LONG since been corrected for. Finally, he has a dubious bit about terminology, where he says that 'climate change' is supposed to be the neutral usage, which is something i've never heard before. The only usage of 'climate change' i've ever seen is by people who wish to emphasize that "warming" does not accurately reflect the full range of possible effects current worldwide warming trends might have in the future. So... what exactly should I retain? Graft 17:38, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)
You both are displaying rogue behavior. I give up. Can't fight two persons obsessed with destroying people's work. I never said Ed's work was 100% accurate or perfect NPOV, but wholesale rollbacks are mean-spirited and amount to spitting on people's efforts. I will not discuss any specifics until you guys decide to adhere to better behavior. -- Stevietheman 20:34, 15 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Chill out, Stevie. Graft and William believe global warming is a (1) real (2) proven (3) danger, and they are up in arms at any attempt to minimize, dismiss or discredit their concerns. I respect that.
Don't worry about the wholesale reversions. Graft made several specific suggestions which I am beginning to incorporate. It's all part of the give and take of editing a work in progress. Dr. C. and I made our peace long ago; we actually get along quite well! --Uncle Ed 15:04, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Protection discussion

I'm sad that William M. Connolley's wholesale reversions of Uncle Ed's work led to this protection. All he and his cohort Graft needed to do was analyze the changes and select those that were POV and modify them. Note that I am not an ally of Ed with regards to his changes, but rather am defending the best interests of the Wikipedia. Wholesale reversions of what is at least partially good work is just indefensible. -- Stevietheman 13:55, 16 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Stevie, I don't know how long you've been on Wikipedia, but please don't make yourself it's Caped Avenger. I am not WMC's cohort, I was merely attempting to step in and end what I thought was an unreasonable revert war. I justified my reversion above: Ed's edits added nothing to the article. There was no way to salvage them, since they were so extensive. They merited reversion. The appropriate behavior on YOUR part would be to salvage what YOU think to be at least partially good work; this would provide grounds for discussion, which is what I believe is the appropriate way to defend the best interests of Wikipedia. You, on the other hand, are eschewing discussion of the text itself and insist on turning this into a personality conflict (which it is not), which is precisely the wrong way to go about things. Please reconsider, so that the page may be unprotected. What do you want to salvage from Ed's text? If nothing, then what is the issue? Graft 16:22, 16 Jul 2004 (UTC)
It's not my job to determine that. It's William's, as it was he who did the wholesale reversion. He should present in an honest manner what is salvageable, then we can discuss it. I want William to correct his mistake and say he won't do any more wholesale reversions of people's work. You can call me any label you like, but I don't like rogue behavior, and I'm not going to stand by and just let it happen. -- Stevietheman 18:31, 16 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I also did the wholesale reversion, and I imagine William's reasons were the same as mine. I don't believe anything in Ed's text is salvageable. It is impossible for me (and probably for William, but since he hasn't explicitly said this I can't speak for him) to present in an honest manner what is salvageable, since I don't believe there is any salvageable material. With that in mind, how is a reversion not justified? Your continued insistence that this is "rogue behavior" are not call to keep this page locked up. I have given a clear list of reasons why I believe a wholesale reversion was justified. Please give a concrete reason (not a general one) for why you feel this specific act of reversion was unjustified; otherwise there's no point in continuing this discussion. Graft 19:28, 16 Jul 2004 (UTC)


For convenience during editing, here is the last pair of changes: http://en.wikipedia.org/w/wiki.phtml?title=Global_warming&diff=4669589&oldid=4667581



Disputed text

Below is the disputed new text as a starting point. Unsheath your pens. (SEWilco 07:12, 17 Jul 2004 (UTC))


The term global warming usually refers to the view that the world's average temperature has been increasing since the Industrial Revolution, due to "pollution" from carbon dioxide and similar "greenhouse gases". The term has also been used to refer to other increases in average atmospheric temperature which have occurred in history, regardless of cause.

Rephrasing is needed to remove the awkwardness of the "pollution" term. Also when discussing temperature change events of the planet, "global" does not tend to be used repeatedly after the global context is introduced. I think the last sentence which tries to claim an alternate meaning should instead be a reference to the adoption of the phrase by GW "proponents". (SEWilco 07:28, 17 Jul 2004 (UTC))
Para. 1: Use of terms in scare quotes has made the second version hazy from the get go. Its second sentence carries it completely off the intended topic because it makes the term "global warming" include all instances of amelioration of ice age conditions. P0M

Scientists universally agree that, until the twentieth century, every period of global warming has been followed by a period of global cooling and that for all of human history the average yearly temperature has remained within a range of a few degrees (Centigrade).

Scientists universally agree that during recorded history the average global temperatures have varied by a small percentage. The rates of change and amounts of change continued to be studied. (SEWilco 07:28, 17 Jul 2004 (UTC))
Para. 2: The second paragraph of the second version implicitly asserts that global warming is not a problem. It assumes that increases and decreases of temperature will remain within the range of "a few degrees" as though the earth's behavior during historical times is some kind of standard for all future times. An increase of temperature of comparable magnitude to the decrease in temperature during the so-called Little Ice Age would not even be inconsequential. A quibble: mention of "degrees (Centigrade)" gives a gratuitous sense of precision. P0M

In the 1970s it was unclear whether global warming or global cooling were more likely in the near future (next 100 years). By 1980 much opinion was in the warming camp, though uncertainties remained large. Since 1990, the prospect that the earth's surface might become dangerously overheated captured public attention, and it has been a hotly debated topic ever since.

Para. 3: The use of "warming camp" and "hotly debated" in a serious discussion of global warming sets up a kind of uncomfortable semantic reverberation. P0M 15:22, 17 Jul 2004 (UTC)


I removed the rest of the disputed text from here, as the main article is no longer Protected and edits can continue there. Whoever wants to discuss text will copy it here...as usual. (SEWilco 15:21, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC))



Climate Change

Ed, I don't understand why you want to include a passage where you emphasize what you yourself admit is a little-known usage of the term 'climate change'. It seems as if Wikipedia is advocating for that usage over the more widely-accepted one. In fact, I've never even heard of your usage before - climate change is, as far as I can tell, a more biased term than global warming. Graft 18:27, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I include that passage to dismiss the term as misleading propaganda: I don't think we should use it. It's not "my usage", and I agree that it's a biased term. --Uncle Ed 14:26, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Some comments

I just started reading this article, and I would strongly sggest to move the temperature trends section somewhere lower down. The Terminology section is a much better, and less controversial introduction to the topic. Even stronger, I suggest to remove it from the article and incorporate it in the "scientific opinion of global warming" page. It seems more apropos there --Frank.visser 22:45, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I happened to do just that, as Terminology fit well as a companion to the opening paragraph. It helps to keep the introduction short.
--SEWilco 03:51, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Also, when the IPCC is mentioned in

The IPCC was established to assess the risk of human-induced climate change; the United States National Academy of Sciences endorsed the theory

would it not be appropriate to mention what the view of the IPCC is? The USNAS's endorsement is mentioned --Frank.visser 22:49, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Good point, I saw a similar fragment with the IPCC climate change terminology. There are several similar pieces of related info which need consolidation and flow editing.
--SEWilco 03:51, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Suggested move

I strongly suggest a move to global environment change which is the term that the scientific community now prefer to use, and the one I was taught to: It may not just get warmer... Dunc_Harris| 22:23, 29 Jul 2004 (UTC)

To Thejackhmr

(William M. Connolley 19:04, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)) Your edits are veering off towards excess POV. From the most recent lot:

  • you ch "Global warming theory (GWT): Global warming sometimes refers to theories explaining such an increase." to "Global warming theory (GWT): Global warming sometimes refers to global warming theories." This is simply circular and pointless.
my mistake, thanks. However, the definition of global warming is not limited to anthropogenic forces.
(William M. Connolley 20:27, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)) That doesn't seem to be relevant to the point above.
  • you deleted "due to emissions caused by humans of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2). Use of the term "global warming" in the popular press usually implies a human influence." all of which seems to belong
no, that's your use of the term. and maybe some of the popular press. Got to keep it more neutral than that
So you deleted some stuff (pop press) which you admit is true? Why remove it?
  • you replaced a passable def of climate change with a dubious one and for no obvious reason stripped out the unfccc.
see the discussion of climate change in the first paragraph
Nope, don't understand you. And why strip out the unfccc?

Sorry about the volcanism - that should go back in.

thank you?
You're welcome.

(William M. Connolley) Please learn how to use the "preview" button to prevent excess numbers of edits: it makes life easier for everyone. One edit-per-sentence isn't reasonable.

You added:

Climate simulations do not accurately model the warming that occurred between approximately 1910 and 1945.

This is wrong. See the climate models page. You are confusing modelling and attribution.

You contraction of:

Various hypotheses have been proposed to link terrestrial temperature variations to solar variations. The meteorological community has responded with skepticism, in part because theories of this nature have come and gone over the course of the 20th century.

to

Some researchers attribute increases in global air temperature to increases in sunlight:

is unacceptable. It removes useful information just because you don't like it.

(William M. Connolley 21:12, 7 Aug 2004 (UTC)) I've done enough reverting for today so must stop. But you're wrong the GCM simulations - see above.

William, this Wiki Global Warming article has been changed to offer readers, which may include children and students, a more NPOV. More changes are to come. -thejackhmr

Protection

You two mind fighting it out here, rather than in the article? [[User:Meelar|Meelar (talk)]] 19:28, 2004 Aug 8 (UTC)

"nearly everything" here in the WC version is "absolutely" infected with connelly's emotional style. Clearly it will have to be cleaned up. That can happen now, or it can happen later. I say it happens now, Connelly says it happens later. Whenever...
(William M. Connolley 19:44, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)) Thanks for the protection. Yes, lets talk about it.
(William M. Connolley 19:59, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)) OK, lets go through some of the differences and try to resolve them:
JH wanted Much about global warming is controversial, and as a result there does not exist a global scientific consensus sufficient to justify radical action to possibly ameliorate its potential effects (see Kyoto Protocol). rather than Nearly everything about global warming theories is controversial, not the least of which is whether there exists a scientific consensus sufficient to justify radical action to ameliorate its effects (see Kyoto Protocol).. The main import of this is to assert that there is no sci consensus. Now, this has been argued over elsewhere: I say there is, others (mostly Ed Poor) say there isn't. Or perhaps that there isn't enough evidence to say for sure. But JH's version now asserts categorically that there is no consensus, and this is not acceptable.
Actually my version says there is no global scientific consensus. Your version says there is debate and controversy as to whether there is a consensus. Debate and controversy are the absence of consensus. Your wording was cloudy and oxymoronic, so I changed it.
con·sen·sus n.
1. An opinion or position reached by a group as a whole
more:
(William M. Connolley 20:54, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)) Nearly right. There is debate and controversy (clearly) , but not within the sci community (my assertion). So the existence of the consensus is open: but it should not be directly denied.
Alas, you don't seem to understand the meaning of consensus. I invite you to read the definition again, scratch your head once more, and write another confounded response.
Read what I wrote. The question is not the defn of consensus, but *scientific* consensus, and whether there is such *within the sci community*.
JH wanted Some researchers attribute increases in global air temperature to increases in sunlight instead of Various hypotheses have been proposed to link terrestrial temperature variations to solar variations. The meteorological community has responded with skepticism, in part because theories of this nature have come and gone over the course of the 20th century.. Its possible he did this to simplify it for "children and students" (see above) but this is not a kiddies book. The theories-have-come-and-gone is fact; I can back this up if needed and perhaps it would be interesting to do so. Saying "sunlight" rather than solar variations is over-simplified for several reasons. Firstly, sunlight at the sfc appears to be decreasing, if anything - see global dimming. Secondly, the most recent solar-var theories are based on solar wind affecting cosmic rays affecting clouds, *not* on the rather weak variations in insolation.
Ed Poor's version was chosen over yours because it was more elegant and neutral.
(William M. Connolley 20:54, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)) "was choosen"? Are you trying to imply that someone other than you chose it? Answer the points I raised: your version is inaccurate, as I've shown.
William, you're an awfully bumbling writer; simple is always better -- for kids and adults. Learn the concept. And please don't speak for the entire meteorological community.
Your writing is too simplistic. And you still haven't addressed the points I've raised. Come-and-gone is a commonplace within the met community.
JH wanted Climate simulations do not accurately model the warming that occurred between approximately 1910 and 1945. However, some models show that the warming which occurred during the period between 1975 and 2000 may be anthropogenic. instead of The most recent climate models produce a good simulation of the global temperature change over the last century. Climate simulations do not unambiguously attribute the warming that occurred from approximately 1910 to 1945 to either natural variation or to anthropogenic forcing (see anthropogenic global warming). All models show that the warming occurring from approximately 1975 to 2000 is largely anthropogenic. These conclusions depend on the accuracy of the models used and on the correct estimation of the external factors.. Firstly, the models *do* reproduce 1910-1945 fairly well [2], which is linked from climate model. AFAIK all GCMs which have offered an opinion say the most recent warming is mostly anthro. My preferred text says the GCMs "do not unambiguously attribute the warming" 1910-45 and I think that is fair.
The models may indeed be "good" or "unambiguous" in your own opinion, but I would rather you left your own opinions out of this encyclopedia. Save the chit chat for the water cooler. And you, Mr. Connolley, certainly have no idea what "all models show", so please don't write that here.
(William M. Connolley 20:54, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)) You want to Mr me, get it right: use Dr. You want opinions left out but are happy to have "Climate simulations do not accurately model" left in? I've provided a piccy to back up my assertion: waht have you got? Ditto the recent warming.
You're not being clear. Let me repeat: Please leave your opinions out of this article. Models do not produce "good" results, "fairly well" results, nor "unambiguous" results. They are just results.
You're being silly. All of those terms are commonplace in scientifc papers. Now, why don't you address the links I provided which show that models *do* reproduce the T record from 1910-45. If you like, we could simplify it to "GCMs do accurately model..." which migh address your objections to terminology? You have provided nothing but your opinions which makes your criticising those who provide facts laughable.

I see you've been here protecting your version aggressively for a long time; indeed much of this article is clearly yours. Stand down, William. Allow others to correct, improve, and (most importantly) neutralize this article. ~thejackhmr

(William M. Connolley 20:54, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)) Yes, I've been doing my best to keep this article accurate for a while. You want to improve it, you'd better have some answers to the points raised above not just "chit chat".
Yet you've been doing your worse at understanding the concept of this encyclopedia! Contain your emotions, butt out, allow other folks in. Good luck! bye for now ~thejackhmr
(William M. Connolley 21:35, 8 Aug 2004 (UTC)) When you find yourself explaining a dictionary defn, you've probably misunderstood the argument. Thats certainly true in this case.

(William M. Connolley 12:55, 21 Aug 2004 (UTC)) Drop indents. JH is amusing himself inserting definitions of consensus. Whilst this is funny, it doesn't help progress the article, and fails entirely to address the other points of his reversion. Doubtless stevie-the-man will be butting in soon to complain that JH has reverted rather than selectively changing (ha ha).

So: the article (my version, which was stable for some time) says that many things are controversial about GW *including whether there is a consensus or not*. JH insists that there is no consensus. Clearly, there is no political consensus (is this the source of his confusion...? No, because the article clearly states no-sci-consensus). I assert that there *is* a sci consensus, but I'm happy for the article to be vaguer and state that whether consensus exists is unclear. But I won't accept the bald assertion that there is no sci cons.

If this comproise is rejected, I'll harden up my position and start putting in that there *is* a sci consensus.

Rv of Ed's solar stuff up the front

(William M. Connolley 21:16, 10 Aug 2004 (UTC)) NOt sure of how hard Ed (or I) want to fight this but perhaps its a good thing to justify any rv. So:

"Not all scientists agree with the GWT:" doesn't require much support - Lindzen would probably do, though of course it depends what you mean by GWT, there being several shades. Assuming we are defining it at this point as humans-have-caused-a-sig-part-of-the-warming-over-the-past-century|50-years, then L would probably do. You wouldn't find many other reputable sci to agree, though.

But the quote that follows is then orthogonal to all that. "As the 21st century began, most experts thought it plausible that the Sun had driven at least part of..." doesn't mean most-sci-thought-people-hadn't-driven. "Plausible" means, its a theory, its not obviously rubbish, we can think about it. IT doesn't mean they believe it. And "at least part" is very vague and could mean as little as 5%."Most convincingly" means this-is-the-most-convincing-bit (possibly of a poor bunch). *Not* that the evidence is very convincing.


Greenhouse Effect

With a herculean effort that might be compared to the writing of Gadsby, the article completely misses mention of the Greenhouse effect. (the only occurrence is at the end under "see also").

Darn! Well, that's been known to happen on controversial articles. People NPOV so much that they leave out the actual meat of the matter. Sooo, that might mean some rewriting/tidying is needed. Kim Bruning 21:59, 11 Aug 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 22:27, 11 Aug 2004 (UTC)) I fear you have us bang to rights. I *do* spend a lot of time poring over diffs, not looking at the whole thing. <insert appropriate excuse here>. In pathetic mitigation, I point out that there are many articles linked (climate change, co2,...) and if you follow those you reach GHE fairly easily.


term is disliked by experts in the field

the term "Global Warming" is disliked by experts in the field. Hmm ok, I can see why you'd say that, because the term is ambiguous. But warming is a pretty good word to describe increased energy in worldwide weather systems, isn't it?

Kim Bruning 20:07, 20 Aug 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 21:29, 20 Aug 2004 (UTC)) I'm not sure it really is disliked that much. "Greenhouse effect" might be said to be.


From The Science of Climate Change FAQ
"A.3 What is the difference between climate change and global warming?
Climate change refers to general shifts in climate, including temperature, precipitation, winds, and other factors. This may vary from region to region. On the other hand, global warming (as well as global cooling) refers specifically to any change in the global average surface temperature. In other words, global warming or cooling is one type of planetary scale climate change. Global warming is often misunderstood to imply that the world will warm uniformly. In fact, an increase in average global temperature will also cause the circulation of the atmosphere to change, resulting in some areas of the world warming more, while other areas warming less than the average. Some areas can even cool."
I hope that helps your issue. I also added a link to this site in the Educational Links section (I find the site very helpful)
Ben 09:12, 29 Aug 2004 (UTC)

P value missing from Ed Poors' graph

Ed, could you please still calculate the significance of your regression (P) ? Thank you! Kim Bruning 10:28, 10 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Wetman's edits

I edited today, as an editor, not a protagonist, keeping the average, well-informed reader in mind, and reducing waffle I hope and increasing neutral clarity. I hope my edits will be assessed individually. This statement is opaque to the reader: " From less direct geological evidence it is believed that values this high were last attained 40 million years ago." Is this a reference to the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, or what? Wetman 19:38, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 20:37, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)) Hmm, a bit grim if people feel obliged to say stuff like the above... ah well.
  • I'm surprised the statement above is opaque... it refers to CO2 levels, as the context makes clear?
  • I reverted the first para. There is one mainstream GW theory (which has opponents, of course).
  • cl ch *is usually* used to avoid implying human influence (and not to avoid mentioning gw).
  • I linked to radiative forcing but its not a brilliant page
  • 1970's cooling stuff... is a pet of mine... but I'm happy to discuss it...
etc


Anything special about the date 40 mya? Is this a mistaken date, and the opaque reference to CO2 levels actually refers to the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, or is the date pulled from a hat to represent a long long time, or what? Maybe if the reference were expanded a bit we could draw more information from it. Does "less direct geological evidence" imply isotope counts in sediments or something like that? The first para. might disamb. "models" and "theory" to help us poor readers. Just my attempt... Wetman 21:58, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 22:08, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)) Nope, its a fairly exact date (give or take 5 Myr say: things are precise that far back) with (AFAIK) nowt to do with the P-ETM. Of course, I can't remember where exactly I got the value from. It is (again, AFAIK) far less accurate than the ice core derived values - the error bars are large, and (I think) it depends on a combination of modelling studies and poking at rocks. I'll try to dig out where it comes from... hmm... if you have access to Nature, try: the refs in http://www.co2science.org/journal/2000/v3n23c1.htm (but for goodness sake don't believe co2science's interpretation of the paper)
Hmm I guess you see why we don't derive much information from the statement as it stands. About the opening, " The global warming theory states that the temperature has risen since the late 19th century," my point is simply that this is not what a theory does. The Global warming theory theory, based on suchandso observations, offers various models... If my previous tweak was unacceptable (" Several global warming theories account for (or dismiss) the documented rise in temperature since the late 19th century, whether due to human causes..."), let's just find a better alternative. Wetman 22:17, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 22:24, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)) Weeelllll... OK, this has history... I probably wouldn't write GW theory... I'd just write GW says... But if you want to consider it a theory, then the "theory" encompasses the interpretation of the obs - which includes believing the obs for example - etc etc.


To call the Kyoto treaty (now to the Russian Parliament) a "radical" action seems to assume it is overkill in light of the problem -- either that there is no problem, or that the Kyoto treaty does too much. But as the NY Times points out in "With Russia's Nod, Treaty on Emissions Clears Last Hurdle" By SETH MYDANS and ANDREW C. REVKIN

Published: October 1, 2004:

"... The treaty is widely considered a milestone of international environmental diplomacy. It is the first agreement that sets binding restrictions on emissions of heat-trapping gases that, for now, remain an unavoidable result of almost any facet of modern life, including driving a car and running a power plant. The main source of the dominant gas, carbon dioxide, is burning coal and oil.

But many specialists say that, at the same time, the protocol is just the tiniest initial step toward limiting the human influence on the climate, given that its targets are small and that the United States will not be bound by its terms. China, a major polluter that did sign the treaty, is not bound by its restrictions because it is considered a developing country.

The treaty would require 36 industrialized countries to reduce their collective emissions of six greenhouse gases by 2012 to more than five percent below 1990 levels, with different targets negotiated for individual countries.

By one calculation, it would take more than 40 times the emissions reductions required under the treaty to prevent a doubling of the pre-industrial concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere in this century.

Still, the decision by the government of President Vladimir V. Putin to endorse the treaty was "cause for celebration," said Klaus Toepfer, the executive director of the United Nations Environment Program. ... "

Since it seems prudent to take available steps to amelioriate the effects of global warming, just in case it is real after all, and since the Kyoto treaty is a rather restrained first step in that direction, it might better be termed an example of concerted international action, rather than a "radical" action.


Venus / Mercury

Note that Venus is the planet with the highest surface temperature, while Mercury is the closest to the sun. Venus has a *much* higher surface temperature than could be expected merely by its orbit. I'd say that research on Venus has given much insight into the greenhouse effect.

(William M. Connolley 18:59, 27 Sep 2004 (UTC)) Nothing wrong with mentioning Venus, in the right place. It is mentioned on the Greenhouse effect page and thats probably the place for it. You're right about Venus/Mercury. I was trying to say that venus-is-hot-so-co2-will-make-us-hot is not a logical argument in itself; it needs more context. Also, I rather doubt that Venus has taught us much about GHE, though that doesn't really matter here.

Standards & Chemical names

Hi - I've been trying to help standardize the chemical & mineral names on Wikipedia along with some others.

IUPAC is "The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) is an international non-governmental organization devoted to the advancement of chemistry. It has as its members national chemistry societies. It is the recognized authority in developing standards for the naming of chemical compounds, through its Interdivisional Committee on Nomenclature and Symbols".

Quoting from: American and British English differences

"sulphur sulfur The American spelling is the international standard in the sciences, although many British scientists use the British spelling."
Vsmith 17:09, 28 Sep 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 21:22, 28 Sep 2004 (UTC)) But all through the IPCC tar its sulphate. I don't mind if people write sulfate. I do object to people "correcting" to the american spelling. You mentioned wiki policy was in favour of your interpretation: what do you mean? I recall a policy of inconsistent spellings.

A quote from Wiki Manual_of_Style#Scientific_style:
In articles about chemicals and chemistry, use IUPAC names for chemicals wherever possible, except in article titles, where the common name should be used if different, followed by mention of the IUPAC name.
Sulfur, sulfate and sulfide are the standard as mentioned in the quote previously mentioned. As such they are preferred in scientific articles with exceptions for archaic or historical contexts and some very region specific cases. Just working toward clarity and consistency.
Vsmith 00:38, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 08:42, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)) As you'll have noticed, this is an article about global warming, not chemistry.

Yup - saw that. And Global Warming is either a socio-political debate or a subject of scientific study by applying atmospheric chemistry and physics principles. If it is to have meaning, it is about chemistry. I haven't continued the spelling battle - it is a minor thing. sulphate aerosols in general is a fuzzy phrase which needs clarification, but not now. Vsmith 12:07, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)

So its not an article about chemicals or chemistry.

Didn't say that. Global warming is largely about atmospheric chemistry, is it not? -Vsmith 15:19, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)

No. Chemistry is a fairly minor component of the theory. If its "mostly" anything, its mostly radiation.

Hmm? But, it is the various gas molecules that absorb and re-radiate that radiation (IR from earth absorbed and re-radiated back to earth or bounced around in the atmosphere thereby increasing temp.) Or it is the DMS produced aerosols that creat cloud condensation nuclei & increase the albedo & cool the earth. It's the interactions between the atmospheric chemicals (man made or natural) and the radiation that is causing the changes observed. And these gases and aerosols are chemicals and their interaction with radiation is chemistry. So, no - it is not mostly radiation. It is mostly chemistry. -Vsmith 16:06, 29 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Just like swimming is mostly chemistry, because water is a chemical.

Very funny. If your models or hypotheses lack a sound basis in atmospheric chemistry then they would seem to be in the realm of fiction. Good day. -Vsmith 03:55, 30 Sep 2004 (UTC)

William, please stop this embarrassing tantrum. I understand you've put a lot of work into Global Warming and you've done an admirable job, it's a great article, but this is wikipedia and you don't OWN it. Sulfate is not merely "the American spelling" anymore, it is now the international spelling as agreed upon in almost all international scientific organizations(and some purely british ones too). This is a scientific article which requires the now right and proper spelling of sulfur. In the past I have assisted you in defending the scientific rigour of several other articles like Ozone hole and the like against assault from religious and extremely conservative (false) ideologues, let's concentrate on continuing that good fight and not on a silly pissing contest over an antiquated term which is quickly falling out of disuse worldwide. Again, there is no "American bias" here William, for instance, all scientific articles are also required to use the IUPAC and quentessentially British spelling "Aluminium". --Deglr6328 15:05, 5 Oct 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 17:06, 5 Oct 2004 (UTC)) Wiki policy is not to change spelling. In purely or mainly chemical articles, the policy appears to use american spelling, but GW is not about chemistry - unless you're going to revive Vsmiths "its about co2 and co2 is a chemical" argument above.
"Wiki policy is not to change spelling" - is it really? Where is this policy located, if so? ~leifHELO 23:08, 5 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Here[3] "If an article is predominantly written in one type of English, aim to conform to that type rather than provoking conflict by changing to another. " Mintguy (T) 08:33, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Global warming is a scientific article and therefor should use the accepted standard for spellings of chemical names. Any in depth study of global warming must consider the interactions between the various chemicals in the atmosphere, both naturally occurring and anthropogenic. The interactions are largely through the reflection, absorption and re-radiation of infrared and visible radiation. The thin gaseous solution that we call the atmosphere is a chemical solution, and works under the principles of chemistry. A look at the Greenhouse gases article confirms the importance of chemistry. Again, this is a science topic with heavy dependance on chemistry and should use standard scientific notation and spelling for clarity. It is irrelevant that other international groups and government agencies ignore the standards. We can be better than that: Consistency and clarity should be the theme throughout Wiki science articles. -Vsmith 15:23, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 15:59, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)) GW is a *scientific* article and a prime requirement for science is precision. Like being able to tell the difference between chemistry in particular and science in general. The wiki policy on using american spelling for sulphur applies (if accepted) only to chemical articles, not all scientific ones. Your repeated attempts to claim that GW is essentially a chemical article are absurd.
Not absurd - factual. And the standard should apply to all science articles. As for precision, what is the atmosphere composed of if not chemicals? -Vsmith 16:27, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Folks, let's not have spelling wars, but do note that for all items that are studied by science, if there's one or more standards specifying spelling or symbology, please Use The Friendly Standard (UTFS) (for RTFM values of Friendly). Kim Bruning 19:39, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Does reading Wikipedia:Manual_of_style#Usage_and_spelling help at all? Kim is right, the bottom line of our style guide is, "Let's not have spelling wars". Tom - Talk 19:51, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)

The bottom line is that you shouldn't provoke article disputes by changing spellings. So please leave the article with the spelling of the original contributor, which is this case is the ph spelling of sulphur and sulphate. The ph spelling is perfectly well understood on both sides of the Atlantic. For instance a Google search for "site:.gov sulphur" (which is restricted to US government related sites only; i.e. no chance of the British/Australian etc.. site) gives 40,000 hits. It is the wiki-way to let these variations live in Wikipedia. Mintguy (T) 20:53, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Wow, great, that whole bother was helpful. Could listing a page on rfc to elicit insightful comments be any more pointless?--Deglr6328 05:38, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)

I agree with Mintguy, both spellings are common, leave it however the original was. --fvw 01:11, 2004 Oct 15 (UTC)

Since this page doesn't really get into the chemistry of global warming (maybe it should, but it doesn't at the moment), I'd concur that leaving the variant spelling here is acceptable. Mpolo 07:50, Oct 17, 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 18:51, 13 Oct 2004 (UTC)) This discussion doesn't seem to be attracting a wide response. I've added a note and a policy proposition at: Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style in an effort to attract more discussion.

Although I am very late to this, allow me to point out that the principal virtue of the IUPAC standard, is that it is a standard. If the wikipedia enforces consistent IUPAC nomenclature and spelling searching the document(s) becomes much easier.

...and Ozone

By the way, is there a reason that the "ozone hole" is not once mentioned in this article? -- it seems to be mentioned practically every time I hear Global warming debated. Mpolo 07:50, Oct 17, 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 09:38, 17 Oct 2004 (UTC)) The OH doesn't have a lot to do with GW. Maybe its worth mentioning to point that out though.
Ozone depletion causes stratospheric cooling. It should be mentioned. There's even theory that the resulting stratospheric cooling slowed down global warming, and now that CFC's are under control, the warming trend will increase in speed.--Ben 06:50, 3 Feb 2005 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 09:34, 3 Feb 2005 (UTC)) Read the section The relation between global warming and ozone depletion
I agree a note about ozone would be helpful as many if not most tend to link global warming and ozone depletion, two separate though related problems. High temp in stratosphere is due to absorption of UV by ozone, less ozone - more UV energy to lower atmosphere ... -Vsmith 16:23, 17 Oct 2004 (UTC)


(William M. Connolley 20:07, 17 Oct 2004 (UTC)) I've added the note, after some other refactoring. I've also re-ordered the bottom of this page a bit.

see Global warming/temp for a proposed change in the layout of this entry'

(William M. Connolley 21:59, 6 Nov 2004 (UTC)) I've removed see Global warming/temp for a proposed change in the layout of this entry' from the main page to here. Its now a dead duck, I think, but worth keeping on the talk page I suppose.


Clouds Radiate?

Wow, that's interesting. I never knew that. Whoever reverted reflect to say radiate, um, okay, do you have a source for that or so? Kim Bruning 09:42, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)

(William M. Connolley 09:50, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)) Clouds are black in the infrared (like most other things (e.g. white pain; which is why it doesn't matter what colour you paint your radiators)). They don't reflect IR. No source to hand though, sorry. Its general knowledge.
Hmm, if you say so. Kim Bruning 10:36, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 11:35, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)) Well, its here (http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Library/Clouds/) too, a bit.
So, it is an oversimplification to say that clouds reflect sunlight back into space, since they would absorb the infrared component, which I assume would lead to differential heating of the cloudtops vis'a'vis the bottoms. Presumably at night the clouds would also be radiating into space. The radiation of heat from the earths surface would warm the cloud bottoms, which would then reradiate, although convection might also be stimulated, etc. Presuably the higher humidity is also correlated with clouds contributing to the a greenhouse component, there is also the heat of condensation within the clouds. What is the net effect at night, just a slowing of the radiative transfer from the surface to space?--Silverback 12:00, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 12:15, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)) AFAIK in darkness clouds warm the sfc. In daytime it is more complex because of the SW (visible) effect. NB (I think) clouds aren't black they are grey in the IR (depends on thickness etc) and have the T of the air they are in not their own. So I suspect the differential cloud top/bottom stuff may be marginal. But I'm not sure.
Found some detail in Science: "The effect of clouds on Earth's albedo is probably larger in visible light than in the ultraviolet (UV) or near-IR. For UV radiation, strong Rayleigh scattering and ozone absorption reduce the impact of clouds on the albedo. In the near-IR region, absorption by cloud particles, water vapor, and carbon dioxide all limit the impact."link to abstract, quote is from full text and also in Science "Absorption by water vapor, for example, occurs primarily in innumerable narrow bands of the spectrum separated by intervals of little or no absorption." summary, quote is from full text--Silverback 15:52, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Cut from solar variation section

Cut from solar variation section:

The meteorological community has responded with skepticism, in part because theories of this nature have come and gone over the course of the 20th century [4].
  1. This implies that the 2 scientists whose research and findings are discussed next, are NOT part of the meteorological community. A slap in the face that says nothing about whether their measurements and reasoning are correct.
  2. Actually, surveys of meteorologists (i.e., TV weathermen) show wide disagreement with GWT view. They say that the temperature data does not match the GWT's predictions.

Please summarize one or more "skeptical views" of the meteorological community, if you can find any. Then put the deleted sentence back in the article along with those summaries. --user:Ed Poor (talk) 16:46, Nov 16, 2004 (UTC)

Perhaps they have in mind the analysis posted here:
http://www.pik-potsdam.de/pik_web/news/news/html/pm_Shaviv_Veizer_e.html
This criticises the Shaviv and Veizer research which attempted to use correlations over 100s of millions of years to determine the relative strengths of greenhouse and solar forcing (including cosmic ray effects), and estimated that a doubling of CO2 would only cause an increase in temperature of 0.6 degrees C. Which is much less than what the climate models predict. Note, this criticism is unrelated to solar forcing correlations using more recent paleo and historical data and that the cosmic ray theory is still alive and well and being fleshed out. However, until the understanding of the physics can be incorporated in the models, we probably won't get a good estimate of the relative effects. There is a lot of work to be done in getting the cloud physics, ocean models, etc. right.--Silverback 18:40, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)
(William M. Connolley 18:49, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)) I've restored the bit Ed cut. The met community *has* responded with skepticism - some of it can be found in the very link that Ed deleted. As for Ed's absurd implication: if the met community responds with skepticism to your ideas, that doesn't imply you're not part of that community (example: Einsteins early ideas on light quanta/photoelectric effect were met with skepticism). However, as it happens, Solanki *isn't* part of the met comm: he is a solar-type chappie, as far as I can see. Its hard to know, because he is so non-notable that no oe has bothered to make a wiki page for him.

More solar... (Silverbacks bit cut to talk)

(William M. Connolley 22:30, 17 Nov 2004 (UTC)) I have removed Silverbacks:

Skeptics point to the growing evidence that variation in cosmic ray flux represent an indirect effect of changes in solar activity that increase the warming response to increases in solar activity. Climate models that pass the above tests while modeling the only the direct effects of increases in solar activity will have attributed too much of the historical warming to greenhouse gas forcing, and will predict larger increases in temperature in the future.

to here to discuss. I dislike it, for what I am pleased to call subtle reasons. Which are:

  • "growing" evidence is questionable. There are not-a-huge-number of papers supporting the idea, but also others opposing it. The balance isn't shifting much. In particular the cloud-cover studies come and go, and often change their ideas over previous versions. This could be solved by adding "what they say is" before "growing".
  • The second sentence, if it stands, needs to be preceeded by: "If the sensitivity to solar forcing is indeed greater than the direct effect, then...". Or somesuch.
  • the attribution bit. Firstly "the above tests" are all a bit to the side. But also, climate models don't attribute: studies using GCM data (as one component) do. Solar var isn't all up: if you bump up the sensitivity to solar, you would end up with unexplained downturns. GCM predictions of future change aren't affected by their attribution of the past. This comes down to how-much-do-you-think-GCMs-are-tuned to reproduce past climate. The "famous" hadcm3 picture, I am told (pers comm) was not tuned at all for GHG and sulphate forcing. But you may choose not to rely on that information, as you can't verify it.

And just to add: the entire GHG section this is from is not desperately satisfactory (not from a NPOV p-o-v but from a general sense and correctness one). Its not rubbish; just not that good.

I do think they are tuned to past climate, so the agreement is pretty artificial. Consider this quote "The biggest uncertainties have to do with clouds. The NCAR and GFDL models might agree about clouds' net effect on the planet's energy budget as CO2 doubles, Kiehl noted. But they get their similar numbers by assuming different mixes of cloud properties. As CO2 levels increase, clouds in both models reflect more shorter-wavelength radiation, but the GFDL model's increase is three times that of the NCAR model. The NCAR model increases the amount of low-level clouds, whereas the GFDL model decreases it. And much of the United States gets wetter in the NCAR model when it gets drier in the GFDL model." from "Three Degrees of Consensus" by Richard A. Kerr Science, Vol 305, Issue 5686, 932-934 , 13 August 2004.
(William M. Connolley 11:49, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)) I've just responded (re dark clouds) on another Kerr piece. I didn't find his summary very reliable/useful: the original paper he was commenting on was far more useful. So, initially, I'm dubious about this one too.
Thanx for your response there. I thought a Science writer would be more reliable than that, especially since so much in this subject area is published there. Was there anything to the increased cloud absorption in the paper? Unfortunately this latest excerpt is just a report on a workshop. Hopefully there will also be papers that perform these comparisons between the new models.--Silverback 15:02, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)
If the models are that different, then I think an argument can be made that if they incorporated the cosmic ray derived aerosols that amplify the effect of the sun and retuned, less of the past warming would be attributed to greenhouse gasses and the sensitivity of the future climate to doubling, might well be down in the 0.6 degree C range predicted by paleo analysis. I think it is a shame that there is so much pressure for consensus and trillion dollar decisions are being made on this kind of evidence. I agree that there is not a lot of research dollars being expended on elaborating the cosmic ray mechanism, but I think that the evidence is strong for the original paradox about much stronger the solar signal in the climate appears than could be explained by variations in radiation ouput. There is a mechanism for cosmic ray reduction with increased solar activity, the more extended magnetic field carried by the solar wind, and onward to ionization, aerosols and clouds.
(William M. Connolley 11:49, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)) This isn't really a mechanism, its a proposed chain of causality. When it gets down to the ionisation/aerosols/clouds it gets very very vague/cutting edge.
Yes, cloud cover will also correlate with things that increase with greenhouse warming like water vapor. Perhaps the types of clouds from cosmic rays and their impact may be influenced by latitude, since I think cosmic ray flux is greater at the poles. I think the first modelers that incorporate this stronger indirect solar signal via cloud effects and retune will make a name for themselves. They should at least be able to retune the fudge factors they already tune, but ideally it is cloud cover extents and types that should be tuned for by representing plausible cloud or aerosol physics.
When pieces of a puzzle that serundipitiously explain other pieces start coming together like this, I think we are at an aha moment science, the establishment is slow to accept it.
(William M. Connolley 11:49, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)) Well, you're welcome to your personal opinion but it shouldn't be in wiki. Wiki is here primarily for established science. Thats v hard in the case of climate science since much is new. I think the solar/climate stuff (esp the ionisation/clouds) is very much up in the air. Wiki should/can report it, but must make clear the uncertainties.
Making the uncertainties clear is appropriate. But numbers of papers and agreement of models is no way to judge science. I usually assume good faith on the part of the authors and the peer reviewers, and try to find a way that can all the data can be reconciled. The conclusions however, I leave to my own judgement. For instance, is there a way all the models can match the historical data, make similar future projects, have statistal qualities similar to the earths climate, and good statistical qualities when individual parameters are varied, and at the same time, the anamolously strong solar signal and cosmic ray/aerosol/cloud theory still be true? I think the answer is yes, the statistical qualities, history matching and mutual agreement haven't proven the models are correct, just that some of the qualities you would want in a good model are present. There is nothing to indicate that similar qualities could not be present in models incorporating the larger indirect solar effect.--Silverback 15:02, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)
It took a decade for the bacterial theory of ulcers to succeed. When cold fusion came along, the electrochemists caught the physicists attention and discovered they didn't know how to do calorimetry, something they had been publishing for over 50 years. The physicists are saying they are seeing a solar/cosmic ray signal in the paleo and historical record that correlates well with extreme climatic events, and in a somewhat more complicated way with satellite cloud data, and they have a mechanism. The modelers should not be sanguine about the types of agreement they have reached with each other.--Silverback 10:17, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Whoops, upon rereading the paper with lattitude in mind, I see that particle formation is higher in the tropics, in daylight, in the upper troposphere, so much for intuition. And I'm not sure what is meant by "low preexisting aerosol surface area". That sounds like the process tapers off with saturation, a self limiting effect. --Silverback 10:35, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)