Sunday, September 09, 2007

Do SUVs necessarily cause catastrophic droughts?-OT



David Leahy said...

I, for one, would prefer to keep the discussion here on-topic. The global warming conspiracy theory nonsense is distracting.

Tom said...

I've never suspected a conspiracy during this current Ivory-bill hysteria, and I certainly don't suspect one during the current anthropogenic global warming hysteria.

What logic or data is "nonsense" in the linked article? Please be very specific.


Anonymous said...

Don't hold your breath waiting for a response, Tom -- none of the data or logic are "nonsense". As is becoming increasingly clear, most of the nonsense is, and has been, coming from the AGW tb's.

As more and more research is published showing all of the flaws in the data, models, and assumptions behind AGW hysteria, the tb's are becoming increasingly shrill ( remarkably similar to how the IBWO hoax has unfolded / unraveled! ).

We are now hearing that even if CO2 isn't causing global warming, all of the hysteria will have been worth it if it results in reducing air pollution -- how similar is that to saying that even if there ain't any IBWO's, the hoax / hysteria will have been worth it if it results in saving some bottomland forests?

Although using bad science to accomplish something "good" might have some merit, it doesn't in any way diminish the fact that the science was bad and, in the long run, it is science / scientists that will suffer (can you spell Fitzcrow and James Hansen?), especially if, and as I think likely, it comes out that there was, in fact, some conspiracy involved.....

John said...

If global warming is a hoax I'll be extremely disappointed. I've been planning to retire at my new beach house on the Bering Sea. This probably means my investment capital in the Prudhoe Bay banana plantation is gone too. At least I still have the SUV...

Anonymous said...

The article in the telegraph makes no reference to the original journal article and I doubt the author has even read it, choosing instead to refer to the interpretation supplied on the website:, which takes a notoriously anti- anthropogenic global warming stance. The crux of the article is that “US researchers, led by Gemma Narisma, have now shown that, far from becoming more frequent in recent decades, serious droughts have in fact become rarer than they were a century ago”. However, if you look at the original article published in Volume 34 of Geophysical Research Letters it states “Here we analyze global historical rainfall observations to detect regions that have undergone large, sudden decreases in rainfall. Our results show that in the 20th century about 30 regions in the world have experienced such changes”. No conclusions are drawn regarding temporal comparisons. Their conclusion is “this analysis illustrates the extent and magnitude of abrupt climate changes across the globe during the 20th century and may be used for studying the dynamics of and the mechanisms behind these abrupt changes”. Indeed one struggles to see how one can make a meaningful comparison with a century ago when using a dataset which runs from 1901-2000, which is what the Narisma paper uses.

Ilya Maclean

Anonymous said...

Although what Ilya said is true, it does not refute this:
"A key article of faith for the "warmists" is a supposed increase in the incidence of extreme weather events, such as droughts. As Al Gore claimed to a US Senate committee in March, "droughts are becoming longer and more intense".

But US researchers, led by Gemma Narisma, have now shown that, far from becoming more frequent in recent decades, serious droughts have in fact become rarer than they were a century ago.

In a paper (reported on the website they identified the 30 most "severe and persistent" drought episodes of the 20th century.

Seven of these occurred before 1920, seven between 1921 and 1940 and eight between 1941 and 1960, dropping to five between 1961 and 1980.

The last two decades of the century, when the world was supposedly hotting up more than ever, saw just three. The worst drought affecting the developed world was the US Dust Bowl disaster of the mid-1930s."
The data are the data and just because Narisma et al. didn't use them to draw the conclusion that was in the article that Tom posted in no way lessens the validity of that conclusion -- it's very common in science for one scientist to use another's published data to draw a conclusion that the original author had either not thought about or didn't find interesting.

I would also note that statements such as ", which takes a notoriously anti- anthropogenic global warming stance." are of little value in determining the truth or falsity of what has been written therein.

I could write: "This blog is managed by Tom Nelson who is a notorious IBWO skeptic", but that would hardly refute any / all of the arguments, etc., that have been promulgated herein.

Anonymous said...

(a) Narisma et al and Stahl et al do not use the same data. Narisma et al make use of Mitchell et al's (2004) 1901-2000 gridded data set of measured precipitation values available from CRU. Stahl et al make use of an expanded grid of tree-ring reconstructions of the summer Palmer drought severity indices.

(b) I suspect the article refers to Narisma's work, but actually mean Stahl's work. A fundamental error, which makes one wonder about the validity of the rest of the article.

(c) The fact that, take a notoriously anti- anthropogenic global warming stance is relevant. It is evident that the journalist writing the article has little understanding of climate science and thus relies on the interpretation provided by others.

(d) Reading the abstract of Stahl’s paper, I get a quite different interpretation to that provided. For example “only one prolonged continent-wide megadrought during the past 500 years exceeded the decadal droughts witnessed during the instrumental period” (i.e. since 1850).