ClimateGate delivered a body blow to their diminished credibility when it came out that a small cabal had been tampering with the temperature record and subverting the peer review process. The death blow to the theory is about to be released in a peer-reviewed paper by a former NASA scientist.
*Does CO2 actually cause warming?
Maybe not – A Null Hypothesis For CO2 – Dr Roy Clark
Lansner points out in Part I that many of the reasons offered in papers for “adjustments” could just as easily change the data in either direction. The only way to know if the adjustments (which always seem to bring the observations of the world closer to the carbon-dioxide-powered-models) are legitimate would be for an independent team to go through all the data sets, all the reasons, and all the individual cases. It would be a large job. Does the free world really want to rely on unfunded volunteers to make sure that work gets done? Wouldn’t it be prudent to pay professional scientific auditors (no, not me) to go through the entire set with the aim of finding as many holes and flaws and inconsistencies as they can? Presumably, if it’s all unfaultable, expert and honest, they won’t find much that matters.
Lansner’s full original four part post is here and I know he would appreciate comments and feedback. It’s quite ambitious, and it would be helpful if these lines of inquiry could be followed up. He’s done an extraordinary amount of work. If there were more funded positions for scientists who were interested in finding other causes of warming (non-greenhouse ones) these kinds of questions would have been posted years ago, and would not be left to volunteers to ask.
The researchers found that the rate at which plants and microorganisms release carbon dioxide changes little with temperature variations. This is in contrast to earlier investigations that suggested a three or fourfold increase in carbon dioxide production at quite modest temperature changes. According to one of the researchers, Markus Reichstein, “Particularly alarmist scenarios for the feedback between global warming and ecosystem respiration thus prove to be unrealistic.”
The measurements also contradict another assumption used in climate models: that the respiration of the ecosystems in the tropics and temperate latitudes is not as temperature sensitive as higher latitudes. This does not seem to be borne out by these FLUXNET observations. “We were very surprised that different ecosystems react relatively uniformly to temperature variations.”
These findings will have implications for predicting the relationship between carbon dioxide balance and global warming. It is currently not possible to predict whether the response between these two factors. According to Reichstein, “The study shows very clearly that we do not yet have a good understanding of the global biogeochemical cycles and their importance for long-term developments.”
A parallel study by Christian Beer from the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Jena, Germany, and colleagues looked at the GPP. They estimate that the world’s plant life inhales 123 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide every year.
The study showed that uptake of carbon dioxide is most pronounced in tropical forests, which are responsible for 34 percent of the inhalation of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Savannas account for 26 percent of the global uptake, although they occupy about twice as much surface area as tropical forests.
The study suggests that water is the most important factor that influences photosynthesis. Over 40 per cent of the Earth’s vegetated surface plants photosynthesise more when the supply of water increases. This is a potentially important finding as some climate models appear to overestimate the influence of rainfall on global carbon dioxide uptake.
A curious finding is that it is the temperate grasslands and shrublands that are most affected by water variation and not tropical rain forests. According to Reichstein, “Here too, we need to therefore critically scrutinize the forecasts of some climate models which predict the Amazon will die as the world gets drier.”
Professor Ross McKittrick says no one should be surprised that such mistakes end up in these massive reports.
“The IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) doesn’t have the internal rigour that one would expect of it,” said McKittrick from his office at the University of Guelph. “Nothing is in the process to prevent activist rhetoric from appearing.” McKittrick, who teaches environmental economics and has had his own battles with the accuracy of climate change reports, says the calculations used in the UN reports are often not checked for accuracy and even the much-vaunted peer-review process does not guarantee that the information used is correct.
Amazongate is not the only claim that relies on information from activist groups.
Toronto author Donna Laframboise recently led a team of citizen auditors through the 2007 climate change report and found heavy use of reports from Greenpeace and the World Wildlife Fund. That report is published at noconsensus.org.
Laframboise says Greenpeace was cited at least eight times and the WWF at least nine times, despite both groups having clearly stated activist goals when it comes to climate change.
“This is shocking in a report that the public has been told relies solely on peer-reviewed research published in scientific journals,” said Laframboise.
The UN has appointed a team of academic experts to give advice on how to avoid these mistakes in the future, but McKittrick says the UN isn’t really serious about changing anything.
CO2 is not pollution…CO2 is not pollution..CO2 is not pollution…CO2 is not pollution…CO2 is not pollution…CO2 is plant food…CO2 is plant food…is plant food …is plant food…repeat after me, CO2 is plant food…