The rebuttal to the criticism of our original peer-reviewed climate model paper “Why models run hot” has been published in Science Bulletin. It is also peer-reviewed, and therefore it must be correct. Keeping it simple: the value of an irreducibly simple climate model. It’s free, so download and read.
Lord Monckton prepared a press release that we’re going to use for the British press—and here at my place. There is another, more sedate, version that will also circulate. Take it away, Christopher!
Four skeptical researchers’ new Chinese Academy paper devastatingly refutes climate campaigners’ attempt to rebut their simple model
In January 2015, a paper by four climate researchers published in the prestigious Science Bulletin of the Chinese Academy of Sciences was downloaded more than 30,000 times from the website at scibull.com. By a factor of 10 it is the most-read paper in the journal’s 60-year archive.
The paper presented a simple climate model that anyone with a pocket calculator can use to make more reliable estimates of future manmade global warming than the highly complex, billion-dollar general-circulation models previously used by governments and weather bureaux worldwide.
The irreducibly simple climate model not only showed there would be less than 1 Co global warming this century, rather than the 2-6 Co the “official” models are predicting: it revealed why they were wrong.
By April, climate campaigners had published a paper that aimed to rebut the simple model, saying the skeptical researchers had not checked it against measured changes in temperature over the past century or more.
Now the skeptics are back with a fresh Science Bulletin paper. Keeping it simple: the value of an irreducibly simple climate model, by Christopher Monckton of Brenchley, Dr Willie Soon of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Dr David Legates, geography professor at the University of Delaware, and Dr Matt Briggs, Statistician to the Stars (download the paper from www.scibull.com), explains that the simple model had not been tested against past temperature change because it was designed from scratch using basic physical principles.
Unlike the complex climate models, each of which uses as much power as a small town when it is running, the new, “green” model — which can be run on a solar-powered calculator – had not been repeatedly regressed (i.e., tweaked after the event) till it fitted past data.
Lord Monckton, the inventor of the new model and lead author of the paper, said: “Every time one tampers with a model to force it to fit past data, one departs from true physics. All other models were fudged till they fit the past — but then they could not predict the future. They exaggerated.
“We took the more scientific approach of using physics, not curve-fitting. But when the climate campaigners demanded that we should verify our model’s skill by ‘hindcasts’, we ran four tests of our model — one against predictions by the UN’s climate panel in 1990 and three against recent data. All four times, our model accurately hindcast real-world warming.
“On the first of our four test runs of our model (left), the 1990 forecast by the Intergovernmental Panel was a very long way further from reality than our simple model’s spot-on central estimate.”
Dr Willie Soon was subjected to a well-funded and centrally-coordinated campaign of libels to the effect that he had not disclosed that a utility company had paid him to contribute to the skeptical researchers’ January paper. Inferentially, the aim was to divert attention from the paper’s findings that climate alarm was based on a series of elementary mistakes at the heart of the complex models. In fact, all four co-authors had written the January paper and the new paper on their own time and their own dime.
Dr Soon said: “What matters to campaigners is the campaign, but what matters to scientists is the science. In 85 years’ time our little model’s prediction of just 0.9 Co global warming between now and 2100 will probably be a lot closer to observed reality than the campaigners’ prediction of 4 Co warming.”
Dr Matt Briggs said: “The climate campaigners’ attempted rebuttal of our original paper was littered with commonplace scientific errors. Here are just a few of those errors:
- The campaigners cherry-picked one scenario instead of many, to try to show the large models were better than our simple one. Even then, the large models were barely better.
- They implied we should tweak our model till it fitted past data. We used physics instead.
- They said we should check our model against real-world warming. We have. It works.
- They criticized our simple model but should have criticized the far less reliable complex models.
- They complained that our simple model had left out ‘many physical processes’. Of course it did: it was simple. Its skill lies in rejecting the unnecessary, retaining only the essential processes.
- They assumed that future warming rates can be reliably deduced from past warming rates. Yet there are grave measurement, coverage and bias uncertainties, particularly in pre-1979 data.
- They assumed that natural and manmade climate influences can be distinguished. They cannot.
- They said we should not have used a single pulse of manmade forcing. But most models do that.
- They said our model had not been “validated” when their own test showed it worked well.
- They said our model had not been “validated” when they merely disagreed with our parameters.
- They said we should not project past temperature trends forward. We did no such thing.
- They used root-mean-squared-error statistics, but RMSE statistics are a poor validation tool.
- They incorrectly referred to the closed-loop feedback gain as the “system gain”, but it is the open-loop gain that is the system gain.
- They inaccurately described our grounds for finding temperature feedbacks net-negative.
- They assumed that 810,000 years was a period much the same as 55 million years. It is not.
- They said we had misrepresented a paper we had cited, but their quotation from that paper omitted a vital phrase that confirmed our interpretation of that paper’s results.
- They said net-negative feedbacks would not have allowed ice ages to end. Yet the paper they cited gave two non-feedback reasons for sudden major global temperature change.
- They said temperature buoys had found a ‘net heating’ of half a Watt per square meter in the oceans: but Watts per square meter do not measure “heating”: they measure heat flow.
- They implied the “heating” of the oceans was significant, but over the entire 11-year run of reliable ocean temperature data the warming rate is equivalent to only 1 Co every 430 years.
- They said the complex models had correctly predicted warming since 1998, but since January 1997 there has been no global warming at all. Not one of the models had predicted that.
- They praised the complex models, but did not state that the models’ central warming prediction in 1990 has proved to be almost three times the observed warming in the 25 years since then.
- They failed to explain how a substantial reduction in feedback values in response to an unchanged forcing might lead, as they implied it did, to an unchanged climate sensitivity.
Professor David Legates said: “As we say in our new paper, the complex general-circulation models now face a crisis of credibility. It is perplexing that, as the models’ predictions prove ever more exaggerated, their creators express ever greater confidence in them. It is time for a rethink. Our model shows there is no manmade climate problem, and — so far — it is proving to be correct, which is more than can be said for the billion-dollar brains operated by the profiteers of doom.”