Hurricane Expert Reassesses Link to Warming

A fresh study by a leading hurricane researcher has raised new questions about how hurricane strength and frequency might, or might not, be influenced by global warming. Eric Berger of the Houston Chronicle nicely summarized the research on Friday.

The research is important because the lead author is Kerry Emanuel, the M.I.T. climate scientist who in the 1980’s foresaw a rise in hurricane intensity in a human-warmed world and in 2005, just a few weeks before Hurricane Katrina swamped New Orleans, asserted in a Nature paper that he had found statistical evidence linking rising hurricane energy and warming.

That work was supported by some subsequent studies, but refuted by others. Despite the uncertainty in the science, hurricanes quickly became a potent icon in environmental campaigns, as well as in “An Inconvenient Truth,” the popular climate documentary featuring former Vice President Al Gore. The message was that global warming was no longer a looming issue and was exacting a deadly toll now.

Read the rest

The Houston story has already been refuted here. It depends on the conflation of frequency (which the researcher did not predict to increase) with severity, (which he did).

That prediction, BTW, has been verified; the severity of storms has increased rather markedly, although frequency is not notably up.

Here’s the abstract of Emmanuel’s article, in the Bulletin of the American Meteorlogical Society:

Changes in tropical cyclone activity are among the more potentially consequential results of global climate change, and it is therefore of considerable interest to understand how anthropogenic climate change may affect such storms. Global climate models are currently used to estimate future climate change, but the current generation of models lacks the horizontal resolution necessary to resolve the intense inner core of tropical cyclones. Here we review a new technique for inferring tropical cyclone climatology from the output of global models, extend it to predict genesis climatologies (rather than relying on historical climatology), and apply it to current and future climate states simulated by a suite of global models developed in support of the most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report. This new technique attacks the horizontal resolution problem by using a specialized, coupled ocean–atmosphere hurricane model phrased in angular momentum coordinates, which provide a high resolution of the core at low cost. This model is run along each of 2,000 storm tracks generated using an advection-and-beta model, which is, in turn, driven by large-scale winds derived from the global models. In an extension to this method, tracks are initiated by randomly seeding large areas of the tropics with weak vortices and then allowing the intensity model to determine their survival, based on large-scale environmental conditions. We show that this method is largely successful in reproducing the observed seasonal cycle and interannual variability of tropical cyclones in the present climate, and that it is more modestly successful in simulating their spatial distribution. When applied to simulations of global climate with double the present concentration of carbon dioxide, this method predicts substantial changes and geographic shifts in tropical cyclone activity, but with much variation among the global climate models used. Basinwide power dissipation and storm intensity generally increase with global warming, but the results vary from model to model and from basin to basin. Storm frequency decreases in the Southern Hemisphere and north Indian Ocean, increases in the western North Pacific, and is indeterminate elsewhere. We demonstrate that in these simulations, the change in tropical cyclone activity is greatly influenced by the increasing difference between the moist entropy of the boundary layer and that of the middle troposphere as the climate warms.

Not exactly what the paper reported, um? Nothing about increased severity, but rather on frequency. Take another look at the original prediction by Emmanuel. Higher severity, not frequency. Do you think the story’s creative interpretation, complete with quote-mining, has anything to do with the Houston Post’s editorial policy on global warming? :thumbsup:

Climate deniers have taken a page from the creationist playbook.

The data of global temperatures has shown several things. First of all, there is no “ideal” temperature on earth. Never has been, never will be. It’s always going up and down in great cycles between ice ages and “inter-ice-age” periods with wild swings year to year in between.

Secondly, there have always been periodic anomalies - like rouge waves at sea - that wipe out our local ecosystems, such as “100 year floods” or Category 5 Hurricanes. They don’t happen every year and they’re haphazard.

If “man-made global warming” as depicted by Algore was the correct read of data and not a hoax based on cherry-picked data or computer models, we’d have had “Katrina” size hurricanes every season for the last decade and more each year since 2005 and yet, these last two seasons have been remarkably calm.

There’s no hockey stick rise in massive disasters as the computer models predicted and the socialist-luddites demanded us to believe to be the case.

There are wealther related problems every year: wild fires, mud slides, tornadoes, blizzards, floods… but how much has to do with zoning laws and people planting flimsy homes in areas where the ground is unstable, the wind unpredictable, or in flood plains and coastal regions that are exposed to the open sea or high water?

In other words, higher human casualties are more the function of human beings putting themselves in places that are inherently risky than any change in the actual violence of frequency of bad weather.

The reason anyone died in New Orleans has more to do with local politics (entirely run by Democrats for 40 years) than the Hurricane itself - it wasn’t of unprecedented violence after all. 300 city school buses were more than enough to evacuate the most needy poor of that city. They weren’t used not because of some malfeasance of “ChimpyMcBushhitler” but because of local stupidity.

So let’s not confuse propaganda for scientific data. If humanity caused the current “climate change” then what caused all the past “climate changes”?

The premise itself - that human activity is a CAUSE of GLOBAL climate change has not been proven. It’s faith, not science.

We obviously AFFECT local weather, we AFFECT our enviroment. But we don’t control climate and we don’t cause climate - it’s been getting hotter and colder over millions of years completely independent of what sentient beings have wished or willed to be the case.

The intricate dance of the earth around the sun (which is not a perfect elliptical orbit) and the suns’ own changing energic output from year to year has far more to do with our planetary climate than anything else.

In general that tends to happen when you get a report in a newspaper about some report on a study. Actually it tends to happen when ever the reporter doesn’t understand very well the complexities of what is going on science or not. One would have to be able to sort out what is remarkable about the subject being reported on and it’s context. The reporter would also need to know what the study is saying and what it is not saying, and the strengths and weaknesses of it’s methodology and reasoning.

And yet, the environmental lobby is increasingly willing to drive up the price of food and energy, decrease economic competitiveness, destroy economies, hurt the poor, and throw the world into global depression, all for the sake of limiting the production of carbon dioxide, a gas which promotes tree and plant growth.

Consider:

Dr. Christopher Landsea–past chairman of the American Meteorological Society’s Committee on Tropical Meteorology and Tropical Cyclones–says “there are no known scientific studies that show a conclusive physical link between global warming and observed hurricane frequency and intensity.”

This is one of the discussions that the warmers don’t want to have.

Here:

“The Deniers” by Lawrence Solomon. 240 pages Hardcover. Richard Vigilante Books. April 2008.

Is The “Scientific Consensus” on Global Warming a Myth? Yes, says internationally renowned environmentalist author Lawrence Solomon who highlights the brave scientists–all leaders in their fields-- who dispute the conventional wisdom of climate change alarmists (despite the threat to their careers)

Al Gore and his media allies claim the only scientists who dispute the alarmist view on global warming are corrupt crackpots and “deniers”, comparable to neo-Nazis who deny the Holocaust.

Solomon calmly and methodically debunks Gore’s outrageous charges, showing in on ‘headline’ case after another that the scientists who dispute Gore’s doomsday scenarios have far more credibility than those who support Gore’s theories. These men who expose Gore’s claims as absurd hold top positions at the most prestigious scientific institutes in the world. Their work is cited and acclaimed throughout the scientific community. No wonder Gore and his allies want to pretend they don’t exist.

This is the one book that PROVES the science is NOT settled. The scientists profiled are too eminent and their research too devastating to allow simplistic views of global warming–like Al Gore’s–to survive.

Al Gore says any scientist who disagrees with him on Global Warming is a kook, or a crook.

Guess he never met these guys:

Dr. Edward Wegman–former chairman of the Committee on Applied and Theoretical Statistics of the National Academy of Sciences–demolishes the famous “hockey stick” graph that launched the global warming panic.

Dr. David Bromwich–president of the International Commission on Polar Meteorology–says “it’s hard to see a global warming signal from the mainland of Antarctica right now.”

Prof. Paul Reiter–Chief of Insects and Infectious Diseases at the famed Pasteur Institute–says “no major scientist with any long record in this field” accepts Al Gore’s claim that global warming spreads mosquito-borne diseases.

Prof. Hendrik Tennekes–director of research, Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute–states “there exists no sound theoretical framework for climate predictability studies” used for global warming forecasts.

Dr. Antonino Zichichi–one of the world’s foremost physicists, former president of the European Physical Society, who discovered nuclear antimatter–calls global warming models “incoherent and invalid.”

Dr. Zbigniew Jaworowski–world-renowned expert on the ancient ice cores used in climate research–says the U.N. “based its global-warming hypothesis on arbitrary assumptions and these assumptions, it is now clear, are false.”

Prof. Tom V. Segalstad–head of the Geological Museum, University of Oslo–says “most leading geologists” know the U.N.'s views “of Earth processes are implausible.”

Dr. Syun-Ichi Akasofu–founding director of the International Arctic Research Center, twice named one of the “1,000 Most Cited Scientists,” says much “Arctic warming during the last half of the last century is due to natural change.”

Dr. Claude Allegre–member, U.S. National Academy of Sciences and French Academy of Science, he was among the first to sound the alarm on the dangers of global warming. His view now: “The cause of this climate change is unknown.”

Dr. Richard Lindzen–Professor of Meteorology at M.I.T., member, the National Research Council Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, says global warming alarmists “are trumpeting catastrophes that couldn’t happen even if the models were right.”

Dr. Habibullo Abdussamatov–head of the space research laboratory of the Russian Academy of Science’s Pulkovo Observatory and of the International Space Station’s Astrometria project says “the common view that man’s industrial activity is a deciding factor in global warming has emerged from a misinterpretation of cause and effect relations.”

Dr. Richard Tol–Principal researcher at the Institute for Environmental Studies at Vrije Universiteit, and Adjunct Professor at the Center for Integrated Study of the Human Dimensions of Global Change, at Carnegie Mellon University, calls the most influential global warming report of all time “preposterous . . . alarmist and incompetent.”

Dr. Sami Solanki–director and scientific member at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Germany, who argues that changes in the Sun’s state, not human activity, may be the principal cause of global warming: “The sun has been at its strongest over the past 60 years and may now be affecting global temperatures.”

Prof. Freeman Dyson–one of the world’s most eminent physicists says the models used to justify global warming alarmism are “full of fudge factors” and “do not begin to describe the real world.”

Dr. Eigils Friis-Christensen–director of the Danish National Space Centre, vice-president of the International Association of Geomagnetism and Aeronomy, who argues that changes in the Sun’s behavior could account for most of the warming attributed by the UN to man-made CO2.

I got timed out.

Here’s the link to the book, “The Deniers”:

store.demanddebate.com/

Funny, but “science” books sold on a site that is begging for political contributions probably aren’t of exceptional scholarship.

And given the tens of thousands of scientists who have found evidence for anthropogenic warming, your list is a bit thin, um?

There’s probably a bigger membership list for the Flat Earth Society.

It means that the sponsors are not getting government money; they don’t have an axe to grind.

Please provide the list of "the tens of thousands of scientists who have found evidence for anthropogenic warming. It (the list) doesn’t exist and neither do they.

Of the alleged 2200 “scientists” on the IPCC list, only about 50 actually have any background in the subject or actually contributed.

With respect to global warming, First Things had this interesting article.

Contrary to popular belief, computer models aren’t science.

Opinion polls are not science.

Voting isn’t science.

Repeating with EMPHASIS isn’t science.

Any kind of repetition, with our without vehemence, with or without passion, isn’t science.

And those dozen guys I mentioned are chapter authors, not the total of all those questioning the hypothesis of man-made global warming.

So far the warmers have failed to provide anything that isn’t based on a correlation, opinion, speculation, or faith in a hypothesis. That is hardly persuasive evidence.

And the folks opposing the man-made global warming hypothesis have demolished it.

Face it: the only reason for the warmers pursuing the man-made global warming hypothesis is that it is a major wedge by socialists in the on-going economic warfare against the United States.

The truth is that there really isn’t any persuasive evidence to support the opinion that increases in atmospheric CO2 levels will cause significant warming or we would have seen it by now. The evidence for climate change being natural rather than anthropogenic is much stronger.

We have discussed the fact that a tremendous amount of the temperature data collected from/by ground stations is corrupted … bad … data. Some estimates suggest that 85% of the data reads too high by 1 to 5 degrees. Since “global warming” is only ONE DEGREE per century, … then a five degree error in temp readings could REALLY throw off the computer models (which are squishy to begin with).

ANYWAY, the subject of bad data has been discussed in other related threads but not in this one.

So … here:

norcalblogs.com/watts/2007/08/1998_no_longer_the_hottest_yea.html

and here

surfacestations.org/

Let the games begin.

Contrary to popular belief, computer models aren’t science.

You’re way too trusting, my friend…
MIT’s course in Computer Modeling in Science
ocw.mit.edu/OcwWeb/Nuclear-Engineering/22-00JSpring-2006/CourseHome/index.htm

Here’s a short list of scientific literature on computer modeling in science:
cs.roosevelt.edu/kenevan/PUBLICATIONS.htm

Opinion polls are not science.

So your list of deniers isn’t science?

Repeating with EMPHASIS isn’t science.

Besides you, who uses the caps lock button?

Any kind of repetition, with our without vehemence, with or without passion, isn’t science.

But facts are. Your assertion that computer modeling isn’t science, for example, is contradicted by the facts.

And those dozen guys I mentioned are chapter authors, not the total of all those questioning the hypothesis of man-made global warming.

I thought you said polls aren’t science.

It’s the usual:

Denier:
“Look at all the people who deny global warming.”

Scientist:
They are a tiny minority of dissenters among climatologists.

Denier:
“There you go again. Polls aren’t science.”

:rolleyes:

So far the warmers have failed to provide anything that isn’t based on a correlation, opinion, speculation, or faith in a hypothesis. That is hardly persuasive evidence.

You forgot data. Lots of that, and it’s persuaded many former deniers that warming is indeed in progress, and that humans are responsible for much of it.

And the folks opposing the man-made global warming hypothesis have demolished it.

I thought you said that repetition isn’t science. :confused:

Face it: the only reason for the warmers pursuing the man-made global warming hypothesis is that it is a major wedge by socialists in the on-going economic warfare against the United States.

It seems you have some social/political issues that are keeping you from a rational evaluation of the facts. I object to socialism myself. But the truth is not subject to PC considerations. There are libertarian solutions, if we are willing to do them.

Simply repeating false assertions will not make them come true for you.

Well Barbarian if your so rational and such, if all this is well backed up by science, I think you ought to be able to give us an idea of the weaknesses of the methodology and interpretations of the conclusions you believe. A good scientist should be to tell us the errors that may be remarkable to the findins.

Well Barbarian if your so rational and such, if all this is well backed up by science,

You didn’t read the links? Part of rationality is being willing to learn from the facts. Computer modeling is part of science, and has been since we had computers. And modeling in general has been part of science since Aristarchus.

I think you ought to be able to give us an idea of the weaknesses of the methodology and interpretations of the conclusions you believe.

One significant one was the failure of the models to account for changes in air pressure that increase warming:

**Previous research has shown that over the past thirty years air pressure trends have contributed about 1°C to warming over the UK in winter and up to 3°C in Siberia, as well as 60% of the rainfall increase seen in Scotland. Over Southern England, the air pressure trends have likely made the winters milder and windier. Dr Gillett’s findings indicate that these changes are not well-captured by climate models.

Dr Gillett, said: “Climate models are very good at simulating temperature changes, but this study shows that their simulations of pressure trends in the northern Hemisphere are not realistic. If we could understand and correct this bias, predictions of future regional climate change would be improved.”**
sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/09/050922015634.htm

So the models underestimated the amount of warming that occurred. Science is about learning from such errors; the models are being reviewed and changed to reflect this information. And that will give us more accurate models.

A good scientist should be to tell us the errors that may be remarkable to the findins.

You betcha.

Could you brief on Al’s point about instrumentation error? There are a lot of weather stations out there. Is there guarantees that the thermometers are being calibrated right? I would assume using the same thermometer year after year, it may lose it’s accuracy.

Also micro-geological features can change temperatures by a few degrees. With increased urbanization, the place where the instrument is situated it may inaccurately give a higher reading. I know that where I live the place where the official temperature is taken was moved miles away, which could throw off results. Now I am sure you could take into account history of a single thermomemter. When the warming is shown to be increasing by roughly 1 degree Celsius, but changes alone along the weather station could influence the temperature by a few degrees, I would think it would be hard to figure a proper algorithm to account for that. What has been done to try to remedy this possible area of errors?

Your being a bit too sensitive. I was trying to get you to transition out of fallacious arguments such as appeals to authority and name calling, which don’t really support a conclusion on way or another. I would rather hear your arguments on the based on your interpretation as you see it, both the strengths and weaknesses of your position.

Barbarian asks:
You didn’t read the links? Part of rationality is being willing to learn from the facts. Computer modeling is part of science, and has been since we had computers. And modeling in general has been part of science since Aristarchus.

Your being a bit too sensitive.

I don’t see how you could be offended by that. The facts are just facts.

I was trying to get you to transition out of fallacious arguments such as appeals to authority

The information I gave you regarding a problem with climate models is well-documented. Data is never an appeal to authority. It wasn’t meant as a personal affront to you. I was asked if I knew of any problems with climate models, and I mentioned the most salient one. The models underestimated observed warming in their predictions, because they didn’t adequately account for changes in air pressure.

and name calling,

Perhaps you’re thinking of someone else? The data might be personally offensive to you, but that’s not what its for.

I would rather hear your arguments on the based on your interpretation as you see it, both the strengths and weaknesses of your position.

But when I showed you the data on the models, you seem to have been offended by it. Do you understand that science works on evidence?

Also micro-geological features can change temperatures by a few degrees. With increased urbanization, the place where the instrument is situated it may inaccurately give a higher reading.

This seems to come down to “Well, there are more cities now, so there are more places with higher temperatures.”

Sure. Does that affect global warming? Of course. It is, remember, the average temperature over the globe. The fact that there are more places that are warmer than they were previously does have an effect. Part of that, of course, is generation of CO2.

The sixteen fellows listed are not merely voters, they are climate scientists and authors who have written serious challenges to the false notion of anthropogenic global warming.

Instead of merely dismissing them as cyphers, each of their work must be read and analyzed.

Here they are once again.

Ånd the link to where interested folk may find a paper from each in one place:

store.demanddebate.com/

Feel free to search using search engines such as google, google scholar and clusty for more details on their scientific work.

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