*But however you answer my question, don’t cite no U.N. report!
So I’m sure that you, like me, are constantly getting e-mails or blog posts that sound like this:
I have been doing enormous amounts of research in this global warming (caused by man) theories and have concluded that there is not ONE shred of evidence to back it up. Can you PROVE to me that global warming is being caused by mankind?
Hmm. Not one shred of evidence? “PROVE” — in all caps, too! You know this is pointless, but still, it’s the day after your daughter’s first birthday, and you’re feeling in good spirits about humanity [she was very well behaved — didn’t grab any other kids and only needed to be sung to once to calm her down when people tried to make her eat cake she didn’t want (a good sign, I think, that she’s not going to be a sugar addict)], so you decide to reply something like:
This one is easy. Either you believe in science — i.e. we went to the moon, you go to the doctor, you have IT equipment you rely on — or you don’t. If you don’t, I can’t “prove” anything to anybody. If you do, then the IPCC reports — which are nothing more than a literature review by the top scientists in the world, commissioned by and summarized for policymakers, signed off by every friggin’ govt in the world — are as much proof as a human being could possibly want.
[Note to fellow parents — emails edited because I know some young people read this blog.]
So then you get a reply like this:
Sorry Joe but your email back to me is not proof of evidence. As for the IPCC report, I don’t buy into what they say. That is not proof. And yes, I very much believe in science which is why I don’t believe in humans have caused global warming. But my question is simple, what scientific proof can you show me, and I am not talking about some report from the UN, that humans are causing the Earth’s temperature to rise. Also, what is the right temperature for the Earth to be at?
The email goes on to ask for IPCC credentials since, “I have a list of 400 scientists, what they do and why the don’t believe in global warming as being caused by man.”
Oh, one of those. Once you realize the emailer hasn’t even bothered to read some of your recent posts, you send a reply that you think/hope will end things:
If you don’t buy into the IPCC, we have nothing to talk about. You might as well not buy into what the American Medical Association or the National Academy of Sciences says. Why take medicine? Why floss? Why get on an airplane? The IPCC report is a summary of the scientific evidence. Simple as that…. If you are talking about the well-debunked Inhofe 400, I guess you haven’t been reading this or other sites.
In retrospect, “laughable” is better than “well-debunked,” but then we all come up with better things to say after the fact. All one can do is press on and rewrite history on your blog….
Anyway, you turn out to be quite wrong about the effect of your email [duh!], and get this reply:
Your emails are proving my point. You have not even attempted to offer proof of global warming as caused by mankind. As for the IPCC report, I read it. It does NOT offer conclusive proof that man is causing theEarth’s temp to rise. I will make this even easier for you, just name ONE piece of evidence toprove global warming as caused by man. Just one! As for James Inhofe, he has provided people with enormous amounts of evidence to debunk global warming as caused by man.
Now you’ve done it, or is that, now I’ve done it. Either way, you/I certainly don’t want some random global warming doubter posting some where that “Climate Progress” — or, even better, the “Center for American Progress” refuses to “name ONE piece of evidence” to support its views [notwithstanding the IPCC, which I guess everybody knows doesn’t count]. Plus, I’m starting to think, hmm, maybe it would be useful to direct some readers to the literature on “attribution” [read, maybe you can turn this otherwise wasted time into a blog post]. So you/I reply:
Sigh. You want some shreds of evidence global warming is caused by mankind, but the IPCC is off limits. Interesting but easy challenge. Let’s start here — It’s a few years old now, but it is the best other review of recent science by the leading experts:
“Detecting and Attributing External Influences on the Climate System: A Review of Recent Advances” [It’s actually by “The International ad hoc Detection and Attribution Group.”]
I assume you have a subscription to Science. This is a good study. “Penetration of Human-Induced Warming into the World’s Oceans.”
Here’s NOAA: “The Detection and Attribution of Climate Change.”
I am personally fond of this often-cited paper by NASA.
[Note to most people — The real place to start is “Understanding and Attributing Climate Change,” by Hegerl and Zwiers et al. but for reasons the first half of this post make clear, I can’t do that here.]
But, of course, being the kind of person you are, you can’t leave it at that:
I have more below at the end. But if you won’t believe the 2500 top climate scientists in the world citing hundreds of the latest studies, why would I believe for one second you would believe any studies I cite.
You hide behind the word “conclusive” — please define that word. As you seem to define it, there is no “conclusive” proof that cigarette smoking causes cancer or even that the sun will come up tomorrow.
Inhofe has no evidence. He has opinions backed up by the misinterpretation of a handful of studies that can’t explain what has actually been happening in the past 50 years. Not that it matters AT ALL to the science, but Al Gore does live what he preaches.
Anyway, if you’re serious about wanting to review the science and don’t trust the IPCC to do it, then you should probably read the following [the bibliography of Hegerl and Zwiers et al.]:
AchutaRao, K.M., et al., 2006: Variability of ocean heat uptake: Reconcilingobservations and models. J. Geophys. Res., 111, C05019.Ackerman, A.S., et al., 2000: Reduction of tropical cloudiness by soot.Science, 288, 1042–1047.Adams, J.B., M.E. Mann, and C.M. Ammann, 2003: Proxy evidence foran El Nino-like response to volcanic forcing. Nature, 426(6964), 274 — 278.Alexander, L.V., et al., 2006: Global observed changes in daily climateextremes of temperature and precipitation. J. Geophys. Res., 111,D05109, doi:10.1029/2005JD006290.Allan, R.J., and T.J. Ansell, 2006: A new globally-complete monthlyhistorical gridded mean sea level pressure data set (HadSLP2): 1850-2004. J. Clim., 19, 5816–5842.Allen, M.R., 2003: Liability for climate change. Nature, 421, 891–892.Allen, M.R., and S.F.B. Tett, 1999: Checking for model consistency inoptimal fi ngerprinting. Clim. Dyn., 15, 419–434.Allen, M.R., and W.J. Ingram, 2002: Constraints on future changes inclimate and the hydrologic cycle. Nature, 419, 224–232.Allen, M.R., and D.A. Stainforth, 2002: Towards objective probabilisticclimate forecasting. Nature, 419, 228–228.Allen, M.R., and P.A. Stott, 2003: Estimating signal amplitudes in optimalfi ngerprinting, Part I: Theory. Clim. Dyn., 21, 477–491.Allen, M.R., J.A. Kettleborough, and D.A. Stainforth, 2002: Model errorin weather and climate forecasting. In: ECMWF Predictability ofWeather and Climate Seminar [Palmer, T.N. (ed.)]. European Centre forMedium Range Weather Forecasts, Reading, UK, http://www.ecmwf.int/publications/library/do/references/list/209.Allen, M.R., et al., 2000: Quantifying the uncertainty in forecasts ofanthropogenic climate change. Nature, 407, 617–620.Ammann, C.M., G.A. Meehl, W.M. Washington, and C. Zender, 2003: Amonthly and latitudinally varying volcanic forcing dataset in simulationsof 20th century climate. Geophys. Res. Lett., 30(12), 1657.Anderson, T.L., et al., 2003: Climate forcing by aerosols: A hazy picture.Science, 300, 1103–1104.Andronova, N.G., and M.E. Schlesinger, 2000: Causes of globaltemperature changes during the 19th and 20th centuries. Geophys. Res.Lett., 27(14), 2137–2140.Andronova, N.G., and M.E. Schlesinger, 2001: Objective estimation of theprobability density function for climate sensitivity. J. Geophys. Res.,106(D19), 22605–22611.Andronova, N.G., M.E. Schlesinger, and M.E. Mann, 2004: Arereconstructed pre-instrumental hemispheric temperatures consistentwith instrumental hemispheric temperatures? Geophys. Res. Lett., 31,L12202, doi:10.1029/2004GL019658.Andronova, N.G., et al., 1999: Radiative forcing by volcanic aerosols from1850 to 1994. J. Geophys. Res., 104, 16807–16826.Andronova, N.G., et al., 2007: The concept of climate sensitivity:History and development. In: Human-Induced Climate Change: AnInterdisciplinary Assessment [Schlesinger, M., et al. (eds.)]. CambridgeUniversity Press, Cambridge, UK, in press.Annan, J.D., and J.C. Hargreaves, 2006: Using multiple observationallybasedconstraints to estimate climate sensitivity. Geophys. Res. Lett., 33,L06704, doi:10.1029/2005GL025259.Annan, J.D., et al., 2005: Effi ciently constraining climate sensitivity withpaleoclimate simulations. Scientifi c Online Letters on the Atmosphere,1, 181–184.Arblaster, J.M., and G.A. Meehl, 2006: Contributions of external forcingto Southern Annular Mode trends. J. Clim., 19, 2896–2905.Bader, J., and M. Latif, 2003: The impact of decadal-scale Indian Oceansea surface temperature anomalies on Sahelian rainfall and the NorthAtlantic Oscillation. Geophys. Res. Lett., 30(22), 2169.Banks, H.T., et al., 2000: Are observed decadal changes in intermediatewater masses a signature of anthropogenic climate change? Geophys.Res. Lett., 27, 2961–2964.Barnett, T.P., D.W. Pierce, and R. Schnur, 2001: Detection of anthropogenicclimate change in the world’s oceans. Science, 292, 270–274.Barnett, T.P., et al., 1999: Detection and attribution of recent climatechange. Bull. Am. Meteorol. Soc., 80, 2631–2659.Barnett, T.P., et al., 2005: Penetration of a warming signal in the world’soceans: human impacts. Science, 309, 284–287.Bauer, E., M. Claussen, V. Brovkin, and A. Huenerbein, 2003: Assessingclimate forcings of the Earth system for the past millennium. Geophys.Res. Lett., 30(6), 1276.Beltrami, H., J.E. Smerdon, H.N. Pollack, and S. Huang, 2002: Continentalheat gain in the global climate system. Geophys. Res. Lett., 29, 1167.Bengtsson, L., K.I. Hodges, and E. Roechner, 2006: Storm tracks andclimate change. J. Clim., 19, 3518–3543.Berger, A., 1978: Long-term variations of caloric solar radiation resultingfrom the earth’s orbital elements. Quat. Res., 9, 139–167.Berger, A., 1988: Milankovitch theory and climate. Rev. Geophys., 26,624–657.Berliner, L.M., R.A. Levine, and D.J. Shea, 2000: Bayesian climate changeassessment. J. Clim., 13, 3805–3820.Bertrand, C., M.F. Loutre, M. Crucifi x, and A. Berger, 2002: Climate of thelast millennium: a sensitivity study. Tellus, 54A(3), 221–244.Betts, R.A., 2001: Biogeophysical impacts of land use on present-dayclimate: near surface temperature and radiative forcing. Atmos. Sci.Lett., 2, 39–51.Bigelow, N.H., et al., 2003: Climate change and Arctic ecosystems: 1.Vegetation changes north of 55 degrees N between the last glacialmaximum, mid-Holocene, and present. J. Geophys. Res., 108(D19),8170, doi:10.1029/2002JD002558.Bindoff, N.L., and T.J. McDougall, 2000: Decadal changes along an IndianOcean section at 32S and their interpretation. J. Phys. Oceanogr., 30(6),1207–1222.Bjerknes, J., 1969: Atmospheric teleconnections from the equatorialPacifi c. Mon. Weather Rev., 97, 163–172.Boer, G.J., and B. Yu, 2003: Climate sensitivity and climate state. Clim.Dyn., 21, 167–176.Boucher, O., and J. Haywood, 2001: On summing the components ofradiative forcing of climate change. Clim. Dyn., 18, 297–302.Boyer, T.P., et al., 2005: Linear trends in salinity for the World Ocean,1955–1998. Geophys. Res. Lett., 32, L01604.Braconnot, P., S. Joussaume, O. Marti, and N. de Noblet, 1999: Synergisticfeedbacks from ocean and vegetation on the African monsoon responseto mid-Holocene insolation. Geophys. Res. Lett., 26, 2481–2484.Braconnot, P., O. Marti, S. Joussaume, and Y. Leclainche, 2000: Oceanfeedback in response to 6 kyr BP insolation. J. Clim., 13(9), 1537 — 1553.Braconnot, P., et al., 2004: Evaluation of PMIP coupled ocean-atmospheresimulations of the Mid-Holocene. In: Past Climate Variability throughEurope and Africa [Battarbee, R.W., F. Gasse, and C.E. Stickley (eds.)].Springer, London, UK, pp. 515–533.Braganza, K., et al., 2003: Simple indices of global climate variability andchange: Part I — Variability and correlation structure. Clim. Dyn., 20,491–502.Braganza, K., et al., 2004: Simple indices of global climate variability andchange: Part II — Attribution of climate change during the 20th century.Clim. Dyn., 22, 823–838.Briffa, K.R., et al., 2001: Low-frequency temperature variations from anorthern tree ring density network. J. Geophys. Res., 106(D3), 2929 — 2941.Broccoli, A.J., et al., 2003: Twentieth-century temperature andprecipitation trends in ensemble climate simulations including naturaland anthropogenic forcing. J. Geophys. Res., 108(D24), 4798.Brohan, P., et al., 2006: Uncertainty estimates in regional and globalobserved temperature changes: a new dataset from 1850. J. Geophys.Res., 111, D12106, doi:10.1029/2005JD006548.Bryden, H.L., E. McDonagh, and B.A. King, 2003: Changes in ocean watermass properties: oscillations of trends? Science, 300, 2086–2088Bryden, H.L., H.R. Longworth, and S.A. Cunningham, 2005: Slowing ofthe Atlantic meridional overturning circulation at 25° N. Nature, 438,655–657.Burke, E.J., S.J. Brown, and N. Christidis, 2006: Modelling the recentevolution of global drought and projections for the 21st century with theHadley Centre climate model. J. Hydrometeorol., 7, 1113–1125.Caesar, J., L. Alexander, and R. Vose, 2006: Large-scale changes inobserved daily maximum and minimum temperatures, 1946–2000. J.Geophys. Res., 111, D05101, doi:10.1029/2005JD006280.Cai, W., P.H. Whetton, and D.J. Karoly, 2003: The response of the AntarcticOscillation to increasing and stabilized atmospheric CO2. J. Clim., 16,1525–1538.Cane, M., et al., 2006: Progress in paleoclimate modeling. J. Clim., 19,5031–5057.Carril, A.F., C.G. Men©ndez, and A. Navarra, 2005: Climate responseassociated with the Southern Annular Mode in the surroundings ofAntarctic Peninsula: A multimodel ensemble analysis. Geophys. Res.Lett., 32, L16713, doi:10.1029/2005GL023581.Chan, J.C.L., 2006: Comment on “Changes in tropical cyclone number,duration, and intensity in a warming environment”. Science, 311, 1713.Chan, J.C.L., and K.S. Liu, 2004: Global warming and western NorthPacifi c typhoon activity from an observational perspective. J. Clim., 17,4590–4602.Chase, T.N., J.A. Knaff, R.A. Pielke, and E. Kalnay, 2003: Changes inglobal monsoon circulations since 1950. Natural Hazards, 29, 229 — 254.Chen, J., B.E. Carlson, and A.D. Del Genio, 2002: Evidence forstrengthening of the tropical general circulation in the 1990s. Science,295, 838–841.Christidis, N., et al., 2005: Detection of changes in temperature extremesduring the second half of the 20th century. Geophys. Res. Lett., 32,L20716, doi:10.1029/2005GL023885.Christy, J.R., R.W. Spencer, and W.D. Braswell, 2000: MSU tropospherictemperatures: Dataset construction and radiosonde comparison. J.Atmos. Ocean. Technol., 17, 1153–1170.Chuang, C.C., et al., 2002: Cloud susceptibility and the fi rst aerosolindirect forcing: Sensitivity to black carbon and aerosol concentrations.J. Geophys. Res., 107(D21), 4564, doi:10.1029/2000JD000215.Church, J.A., N.J. White, and J.M. Arblaster, 2005: Volcanic eruptions:their impact on sea level and oceanic heat content. Nature, 438, 74–77.Clement, A.C., R. Seager, and M.A. Cane, 2000: Suppression of ElNino during the mid-Holocene by changes in the Earth’s orbit.Paleoceanography, 15(6), 731–737.Clement, A.C., A. Hall, and A.J. Broccoli, 2004: The importance ofprecessional signals in the tropical climate. Clim. Dyn., 22, 327–341.CLIMAP (Climate: Long-range Investigation, Mapping and Prediction),1981: Seasonal Reconstructions of the Earth’s Surface at the LastGlacial Maximum. Map Series Technical Report MC-36, GeologicalSociety of America, Boulder, CO.Cobb, K.M., C.D. Charles, H. Cheng, and R.L. Edwards, 2003: ElNino/Southern Oscillation and tropical Pacifi c climate during the lastmillennium. Nature, 424(6946), 271–276.Collins, M., 2000a: The El-Nino Southern Oscillation in the second HadleyCentre coupled model and its response to greenhouse warming. J. Clim.,13, 1299–1312.Collins, M., 2000b: Understanding uncertainties in the response of ENSOto greenhouse warming. Geophys. Res. Lett., 27, 3509–3513.Cook, E.R., et al., 2004: Long-term aridity changes in the western UnitedStates. Science, 306(5698), 1015–1018.Coughlin, K., and K.K. Tung, 2004: Eleven-year solar cycle signalthroughout the lower atmosphere. J. Geophys. Res., 109, D21105,doi:10.1029/2004JD004873.Crooks, S., 2004: Solar Infl uence On Climate. PhD Thesis, University ofOxford.Crooks, S.A., and L.J. Gray, 2005: Characterization of the 11-year solarsignal using a multiple regression analysis of the ERA-40 dataset. J.Clim., 18(7), 996–1015.Crowley, T.J., 2000: Causes of climate change over the past 1000 years.Science, 289(5477), 270–277.Crowley, T.J., et al., 2003: Modeling ocean heat content changes during thelast millennium. Geophys. Res. Lett., 30(18), 1932.Cubasch, U., et al., 1997: Simulation of the infl uence of solar radiationvariations on the global climate with an ocean-atmosphere generalcirculation model. Clim. Dyn., 13(11), 757–767.Cubasch, U., et al., 2001: Projections of future climate change. In: ClimateChange 2001: The Scientifi c Basis. Contribution of Working Group I tothe Third Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on ClimateChange [Houghton, J.T., et al. (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press,Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, pp. 99–181.Curry, R., B. Dickson, and I. Yashayaev, 2003: A change in the freshwaterbalance of the Atlantic Ocean over the past four decades. Nature, 426,826–829.Dai, A., K.E. Trenberth, and T.R. Karl, 1999: Effects of clouds, soil,moisture, precipitation and water vapour on diurnal temperature range.J. Clim., 12, 2451–2473.Dai, A., et al., 2004: The recent Sahel drought is real. Int. J. Climatol., 24,1323–1331.D’Arrigo, R., et al., 2005: On the variability of ENSO over the pastsix centuries. Geophys. Res. Lett., 32(3), L03711, doi:10.1029/2004GL022055.Delworth, T.L., and T.R. Knutson, 2000: Simulation of early 20th centuryglobal warming. Science, 287, 2246–2250.Delworth, T.L., and M.E. Mann, 2000: Observed and simulated multidecadalvariability in the Northern Hemisphere. Clim. Dyn., 16(9), 661–676.Delworth, T.L., V. Ramaswamy, and G.L. Stenchikov, 2005: The impactof aerosols on simulated ocean temperature and heat content in the 20thcentury. Geophys. Res. Lett., 32, L24709, doi:10.1029/2005GL024457.Delworth, T., et al., 2002: Review of simulations of climate variabilityand change with the GFDL R30 coupled climate model. Clim. Dyn.,19, 555–574.Dickson, R.R., et al., 2002: Rapid freshening of the deep North AtlanticOcean over the past four decades. Nature, 416, 832–837.Douglass, D.H., and B.D. Clader, 2002: Climate sensitivity of the Earth tosolar irradiance. Geophys. Res. Lett., 29(16), 1786.Douglass, D.H., and R.S. Knox, 2005: Climate forcing by volcanic eruptionof Mount Pinatubo. Geophys. Res. Let
I have read many of these, but, unlike you, I trust the IPCC’s ability to analyze them for me. Let me know when you’re done.
Anyway, if nothing else, perhaps this will discourage people from emailing me….
UPDATE: I just realized that the bibliography was cut off after the d’s. Oh well. Let’s see if the emailer notices….