Friday Funny: Captain Santer and the Great White Fingerprint of Human Influence on Climate

Santer has been searching for proof of the human fingerprint for close to three decades. He has a lot time invested in finding it, from 1996:

The observed spatial patterns of temperature change in the free atmosphere from 1963 to 1987 are similar to those predicted by state-of-the-art climate models incorporating various combinations of changes in carbon dioxide, anthropogenic sulphate aerosol and stratospheric ozone concentrations. The degree of pattern similarity between models and observations increases through this period. It is likely that this trend is partially due to human activities, although many uncertainties remain, particularly relating to estimates of natural variability. July 4th, 1996

It is worth reading a rebuttal of Santer’s 1996 paper by the now deceased John Daly.

And still to this day.

Dr. Roy Spencer posted on Santer’s new paper.

So, why mention stratospheric cooling in the context of climate change?

Climate researchers have been searching for “human fingerprints” of climate change for decades, something measurable that cannot be reasonably explained by natural variations in the climate system.

I will agree with the authors that stratospheric cooling (especially in the mid- to upper-stratosphere) is probably the best evidence we have of a human fingerprint, at least up where there is very little air, where no one lives, and where there are no observable resulting impacts on weather down here where life exists. Water vapor remains an uncertainty here, because more water vapor would also cause cooling, and our understanding of natural variations in stratospheric water vapor is quite poor. But for the sake of argument, I will give the authors the benefit of the doubt and agree that most of the observed cooling is probably due to increasing CO2, which in turn is likely mostly due to burning of fossil fuels.

Infrared radiative cooling by water vapor and carbon dioxide has long been known to be the primary way the stratosphere (and even higher altitudes) lose heat energy (gained from sunlight absorption by ozone) to outer space. This cooling mechanism is part of the so-called greenhouse effect: greenhouse gases warm the lower altitudes of planetary atmospheres, and cool the higher altitudes. In fact, without the greenhouse effect, weather as we know it would not exist. The greenhouse effect is energetically analogous to adding insulation to a heated house in winter: for a given rate of energy input, the inside of the house becomes warmer, and the outside of the house becomes colder.

The stratospheric cooling effects of CO2 and water vapor was first described theoretically by Manabe and Strickler (1964). Adding more CO2 to the atmosphere enhances upper atmospheric cooling, lowering temperatures. The temperature effect up there is large, several degrees C, meaning it is easier to measure with current satellite methods, as the authors of the new study correctly point out.

But what then happens in the troposphere (where we live) in response to more CO2 is vastly more complex. Theoretically, adding more CO2 should warm the lower troposphere radiatively. This warming then gets mixed throughout the depth of the troposphere from convective overturning (basically, “weather”).

But just how much tropospheric warming will be caused by increasing CO2?

After 30 years and billions of dollars expended on the effort in research centers around the world, the latest crop of climate models (CMIP6) now disagree on the expected amount of tropospheric warming more than ever before. This is mostly because of the insufficiently understood effects of water, especially the response of clouds (the climate system’s sunshade) and precipitation processes (which limit the most abundant greenhouse gas, water vapor) to warming.

I consider it irresponsible to conflate stratospheric cooling with the global warming issue. Yes, strong cooling in the upper stratosphere is likely a fingerprint of increasing atmospheric CO2 (putatively due to fossil fuel burning), but for a variety of reasons, that is not reason to believe climate models in their predictions of tropospheric (and thus surface) warming trends. That is a very different matter, and the models themselves demonstrate they are not yet up to the task, now disagreeing with each other by a factor of three or more.

So now you hopefully understand why entitling such a paper “Exceptional stratospheric contribution to human fingerprints on atmospheric temperature” is essentially a non sequitur on the issue of global warming.
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Rod Evans
June 9, 2023 6:28 am

Call me Mr. Skeptical but when I read these kind of articles, I can’t help thinking the Alarmists are preparing to shift the story.
The Alarmists have absolutely failed to find any evidence CO2 causes climate change via global warming. They are now shifting the story . As we enter a cooling climate phase they will now start the steady feed that high CO2 causes cooling. With that they will then demand a ban on fossil fuels to avoid a cooling world.

JD Lunkerman
Reply to  Rod Evans
June 9, 2023 6:39 am

Trying to employ science against the Shell game or Three Card Monty will never work. Only brute force politics can stop this madness.

Steve Case
Reply to  Charles Rotter
June 9, 2023 7:39 am

Ridicule needs a platform. WattsUpWithThat has a nice following, but when you consider that it’s up against CNN, NPR, ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, NY Times, Washington Post, Scientific American, National Geographic — the word isn’t going to get out. Meanwhile I have to keep my mouth shut.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Steve Case
June 9, 2023 8:09 am

Steve, why do you have to keep your mouth shut?

Reply to  Dave Fair
June 9, 2023 9:27 am

To avoid getting fired.

Reply to  Dave Fair
June 9, 2023 11:10 am

Self-interested under 65 y/o best keep head down and pay just bills.

Reply to  Charles Rotter
June 9, 2023 8:23 am

Or threatens alley pugilist meetings.

Bob Weber
Reply to  Charles Rotter
June 9, 2023 8:26 am

I’d rather see him pee his pants in public from people laughing at him for being so stupid.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  JD Lunkerman
June 9, 2023 10:22 am

But isn’t this site the “…the world’s most viewed climate website” according the quote in the upper right? I’ve been wondering about this- how much influence does it have?

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
June 12, 2023 12:00 am

“I’ve been wondering about this- how much influence does it have?”

Lots, 400 million + hits … ‘about the weather’ seems influential to me.

I can attest to 30+ people I’ve directly introduced to WUWT who now question CAGW (admittedly they were open minded fence sitters, not zealots); if each get 5 others questioning there’s 150.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  1saveenergy
June 12, 2023 5:21 am

Goes to show just how woke MA is, because when I mention it to people here- hundreds- zero have looked at it. This is the mecca of the woke universe.

Hoyt Clagwell
Reply to  Rod Evans
June 9, 2023 8:45 am

Originally, the idea of ‘global warming’ was based on measurements at weather stations about 2 meters above the ground. That paper thin sliver of atmosphere was the basis for the whole meme. When the warming didn’t show up as predicted it was claimed that it was hiding in the deep oceans. Now they’re looking to the stratosphere to find signs of global warming. This should all be taken as evidence that there is no human fingerprint where humans actually live. The entire climate change religion is just masking an irrational hatred of coal and oil. That’s why the true believers say the solution to everything bad in the world is always to stop using fossil fuels.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Hoyt Clagwell
June 9, 2023 2:19 pm

It isn’t coal and oil that they hate Hoyt, it’s human flourishing. Anything that enables more humans to exist is a horror to them.

Reply to  Rod Evans
June 9, 2023 9:38 am

Dear Mr Skeptical,

I think you’re correct.

Even the British Biased Corporation seem to be rowing back just a little.

Reply to  Redge
June 9, 2023 11:19 am

How long can a human sustain frantic fear of the same danger?
Their next generation might be asking what’s the next thing.
Not that there aren’t long-term effects to childhood exposure.
I still wonder whether anyone would give a —- about Russia if not for all the missiles they accumulated in the 1970’s. However the same generation that remembers hockey in Lake Placid also has the Soviet Union on the world map in their mind – and that generation still holds a heavy checkbook. Yes, that generation pays for things with bank checks. The one before it hid cash in mattresses. What will kids from todays NYC and LA be looked at funnily for in 60 years?

Geoff Sherrington
Reply to  KevinM
June 9, 2023 7:33 pm

Our socialist Australian parliament has just announced plans to ban cheques and chequebooks, so you might need to use a different illustrative terminology.
BTW, I thought that a cheque book was part of a contract between my banker and me, therefore not the subject of government interloping.
But then, I studied and old-fashioned social construct named “property rights”.
Geoff S

Reply to  Rod Evans
June 9, 2023 11:07 am

 they will now start the steady feed that high CO2 causes cooling
I think its too late – too many careers were based on publishing the opposite.
Some field of sociology must deal with how establishments naturally resist most change, good, bad or unimportant. My test cases would include broadcast media, passenger cars, churches and businesses. Its hard to think of social structures that don’t demonstrate orthodoxy enforcement.

Reply to  Rod Evans
June 9, 2023 11:17 pm

They aren’t shifting the story – the article mentions that the high altitude cooling was predicted decades ago – it’s just another aspect of CO2 alarmist predictions.

Higher temps near the ground, means less energy to the stratosphere, but also more CO2 up there means it’s easier to radiate away energy to space, that can’t convect or conduct out to there because of the vacuum.

However, if the earth is naturally warming up out of the Little Ice Age, then it follows that there would be an increase in the average water vapour level (which is a much better greenhouse gas) as well as CO2 increasing from extra animal life enjoying the warmth, which would lead to the same high altitude cooling.

Either way, who cares? An extra degree of heat over a century? Even with all the extra concrete and asphalt? If it wasn’t for the extra greening reported by NASA, I would have assumed that the world was actually cooling in the background but our urban and suburban activities have masked that.

Ed Zuiderwijk
June 9, 2023 6:44 am

The characterisation ‘state of the art’ does say nothing about the quality of the models. It is a description intended to imbue superior quality, whereas they are and produce utter rubbish.

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Ed Zuiderwijk
June 9, 2023 10:26 am

I’m no scientist but I should think that “state-of-the-art climate models” as Santer phrased it- is a poor way to talk about science research. I realize it’s just a phrase- a metaphor- but I’m not impressed- I doubt Einstein would have said “relativity is state of the art science”. Just doesn’t sound right. Others may disagree of course. 🙂

Reply to  Joseph Zorzin
June 9, 2023 11:26 am

I laugh sometimes that someone demonstrated the lack of foresight required to name a now 30 year-old textbook “Modern Electronics”. I recognized the error while standing in line at the buy-it-or-else store on campus. The excuse for the huge price tag used to be small print runs. I wonder what excuse they’ve invented now that the text can be read as a pdf on a cell phone for free.

Bob Weber
June 9, 2023 6:58 am

Ya, this is a Friday Funny article, but Dr. Ben Santer’s ignorance is no joke.

Dr. Ben Santer also said in his paper

“…it is now virtually impossible for natural causes to explain satellite-measured trends in the thermal structure of the Earths atmosphere.”

It’s virtually impossible for Dr. Ben Santer to see natural causes because he sees only what his mind thinks is there, nothing else, and as long as he’s convinced himself he’s seen it all, he sees nothing. It’s not just him, this ignorance is an epidemic among the climate ‘consensus’.

Dr. Santer should correct himself for not knowing the ocean temperature sets the lower tropospheric temperature, naturally.

The fact is, sunshine warms the ocean that then warms the LT with a 2 month lag.

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Santer also doesn’t seem to recognize that the ENSO region cools along with the stratosphere during solar minima. Since the lower troposphere is in the middle, guess what, it cools too, naturally, and not from more CO2, as the other layers cool naturally, the ocean from long-duration low TSI, and from lower UV for the thermosphere, both related to the solar cycle.

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Bob Weber
Reply to  Bob Weber
June 9, 2023 8:52 am

I found this WUWT article from years ago while trying to find where he allegedly threatened to beat the crap out of someone,

“I’m really sorry that you have to go through all this stuff, Phil. Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted. –Dr. Ben Santer, Climategate emails”

Juxtapose that attitude with his slow and mild-mannered delivery in the video from that article.

Reply to  Bob Weber
June 9, 2023 11:31 am

Be careful. If we want to get mad at people for mixing business communication with their personal communication to hide public policy decisions behind privacy laws, then I think we also have to “not see” the private parts as best we can.
It sounds like the guy was really upset, or thought what he was writing would sound cool and edgy.

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Bob Weber
June 10, 2023 12:14 pm

Ya, this is a Friday Funny article, but Dr. Ben Santer’s ignorance is no joke.”

If you think he’s ignorant, then you are ignorant. He knows exactly what he’s doing, and it isn’t science.

June 9, 2023 7:13 am

Look, in South London just about everybody has died, victims of a vicious half-day heatwave of 22C

If you took the BBC and the Guardian, Independent etc etc at face value on their weather reporting, that would be the inevitable conclusion.

Santer has clearly been after Hom sap for a very long time, I don’t rate his chances. Maybe clear air turbulence might help? But it’s a stretch.

Hoyt Clagwell
Reply to  strativarius
June 9, 2023 8:50 am

Not to mention all the poor victims in Hawaii where the CO2 levels have recently been measured at record high levels. Is anybody even left alive there? The climate must be horrendous!

Reply to  strativarius
June 9, 2023 9:10 am

It was pandemonium yesterday walking from Paddington to Euston stepping over all the bodies lying everywhere. 22C is sooo dangerous.

Richard Page
Reply to  Bil
June 9, 2023 9:31 am

Sadiq Khan has stated that there have been 4,000 deaths a year from air pollution, preventable (of course) by his cash cow ULEZ scheme, so the bodies must be piling up in the streets now!

Reply to  Richard Page
June 9, 2023 11:45 am

Pollution is ok…. if you pay

Reply to  Richard Page
June 9, 2023 4:35 pm

there have been 4,000 deaths a year from air pollution,”

And I bet he cannot name one single person !

Dave Andrews
Reply to  Richard Page
June 10, 2023 8:02 am

I regularly used to walk from Paddington to Euston, Kings Cross and on to Old Street in the 1980sand early 90s. Guess cars were not as polluting back then.

June 9, 2023 7:33 am

Thank goodness that we have a scientist of the caliber, knowledge and integrity of Roy Spencer to rebuke the assertions of Ben Santer.

“Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something.” – Plato

June 9, 2023 7:59 am

Here is a decent article from on the relationship between solar minimums and the cooling of the Thermosphere.,the%20radius%20of%20Earth's%20atmosphere.
“The thermosphere always cools off during Solar Minimum. It’s one of the most important ways the solar cycle affects our planet,” explains Mlynczak, who is the associate principal investigator for SABER. When the thermosphere cools, it shrinks, literally decreasing the radius of Earth’s atmosphere”

Thermosphere cooling is caused by Solar variation (23rd and 24th solar cycle deep solar minimums), Nope!, let’s not mention the Sun and simply attribute it to human fingerprint.

Santer’s article is just another sad but classic case of lying by omission and fallacious reattribution.

So much for science… shoved down the rat hole of political expediency and stupid arrogance.

It is almost like the mentality of the old Soviet Union has taken over the radical environmentalists….. they lie like the old Soviets. Just take the truth and turn it on it’s head over and over again.

Reply to  JC
June 9, 2023 11:26 pm

Radical environmentalists ARE old Soviets, and middle aged and young ones too – political bullies using any made up or exaggerated issue to grab power they don’t deserve and are not competent to use.

June 9, 2023 8:14 am

What if horticulturists got as much wrong as climatologists do?

The human race would have died off from starvation by now.

Jeroen B.
Reply to  Mr.
June 10, 2023 12:53 am

luckily, Trofim Lysenko’s reign of terror didn’t last long enough, nor was his reach wide enough.

John Oliver
June 9, 2023 8:55 am

Look around. How many of your fellow citizens do you think are actually doing what we do here( and on other major policy/social issues). An in-depth well researched critical assessment of the mechanisms that make up the “ climate”
We all know the answer. The sheep consume and graze where ever the MSM and corrupt influencers heard them. I’m not sure exactly what to do about this problem except to maybe persuade on person at a time.

Rod Evans
Reply to  John Oliver
June 9, 2023 9:46 am

John, There is some good news. Many of the people I speak to are aware of the faux climate crisis but are unable to voice their awareness due to perceived peer pressure.
Many of the 30 to 40 year olds have now started to question the nonsense they have been forced to absorb about climate, from their academic ‘betters’ after being forced by their teachers to hear about man made climate chaos.
The truth will out. The crazies, that have made their living telling lies to the children and students over the past twenty five years will pay for their lies.
NB the heat wave in UK reached 24 deg. C today here in central England. I am tempted to have a glass of wine outside on the terrace for the first time this year, but the cooling breeze has reduced the temps to just 20 deg. C at 5.30 pm so maybe not tonight.
We live in hope.

Reply to  Rod Evans
June 9, 2023 11:42 am

The kids subjected to the Inconvenient Truth movie played in USA HS science classrooms leading into the 2008 presidential elections are now over 30? If they go back to review what they were taught back then, they might end up posting WUWT messages. Private school seems like it might become more common.

ethical voter
Reply to  John Oliver
June 9, 2023 4:50 pm

The MSM and political parties ( mainstream politics) have a symbiotic relationship not unlike pimps and whores (my apologies to pimps and whores). The only real power an individual has is in how they vote. Voting for the collective (parties) changes only the cart driver and not the cart or its direction. It is my view that only individuals can represent individuals.

Reply to  John Oliver
June 9, 2023 6:50 pm

You can’t use facts and reason to persuade someone out of a position that they took through mindless emotion.

Only hard, painful experience can overcome the tsunami of propaganda coming from the institutions, the vast majority of media and most academics.

June 9, 2023 8:57 am

“The world needs to trust science”, Yuval Noah Harari, 2020

What is science: “Science is about power not the truth”, Yuval Noah Harari, 2022

The last quote, is the real code red – not AR6 – this is the essens of the human fingerprints in MSM. “Quote” over and out.

UN/IPCC: “We own the Science” Melissa Fleming, 2022

Talk about friday funny, but, is it just Me, I and Myself, if the chief value of science is about power, then the most powerful headline, must be: Code red – Science is about power not the truth.

Mark BLR
June 9, 2023 9:32 am

The end of the abstract to the Santer et al (2023) paper :

Our results explain why extending “vertical fingerprinting” to the mid to upper stratosphere yields incontrovertible evidence of human effects on the thermal structure of Earth’s atmosphere.

NB : Real Scientists (TM) don’t use language in their “serious” scientific papers like “incontrovertible evidence (/ data)”.

I think it was from reading Richard Feynman’s books that I picked up the notion of : “Never mind what they say. Get the data for yourself, plot it in the simplest graph you can … and just look at it …”

NB : If my memory isn’t playing tricks on me I think “our Willis” (Eschenbach) has a similar philosophy.

Attached is a copy of “Fig. 4” from Santer et al (2023), which shows the (Latitude, Altitude) plots of the trends from 1986 to 2022 for 9 individual models (panels A to I), the “CMIP6 multimodel average” (panel J) … and two versions of actual satellite data (panels K and L) …

… the models aren’t really very (/ any ?) good are they.

How the [ bleep ] did anyone manage to reach the conclusion that they can provide “incontrovertible” anything ?

Ed Zuiderwijk
Reply to  Mark BLR
June 9, 2023 9:44 am

Good climate models will: a) all give about the same results when starting from the same initial conditions, and b) those results match the actual observations without those models having to be tuned by varying any number of ‘free parameters’ (aka fudge factors).
None of the CMAP ensemble come anywhere near.

Reply to  Mark BLR
June 9, 2023 10:29 am

Obs show less upward atmospheric heat transport from the surface, particularly from continents. Models show tropospheric hot blobs, at altitude above the surface. Totally different mechanism happening in reality vs models.

June 9, 2023 9:41 am



Pat Frank
June 9, 2023 10:03 am

In my view, Ben Santer has been fishing for attribution for the last 28 years to prove he didn’t lie in 1995 when he did his ‘discernible human influence‘ IPCC SAR re-write.

Tim Ball had a lot to say about that.

So does Andy May. And Judith Curry.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  Pat Frank
June 9, 2023 3:55 pm

In case anyone has forgotten Santer’s ‘5-sigma’ fiasco from several years ago, here’s Ross McKitrick’s response at WUWT:

June 9, 2023 11:00 am

human fingerprints

There it is again – through persistence words, the coiner can create ideas.
True: sticks and stones may …
I sat false: But words will never …

June 9, 2023 12:19 pm

Santer is the gold standard for pseudoscience.

David Blenkinsop
June 9, 2023 12:37 pm

A nice article by Charles Rotter, and I appreciate the Dr. Roy Spencer link debunking climate fearmongering (as conclusions supposedly derived from observed stratospheric cooling). However, I have a nitpick about the logical path taken to explaining the need to consider ‘greenhouse effect’ as such.

The article states “In fact, without the greenhouse effect, weather as we know it would not exist“, and this includes another link to a Roy Spencer blog explanation as to why this is so (as basic physics theory might seem to have it). The gist of the argument, over at the Roy Spencer blog, is that “infrared absorbers are also infrared emitters”. The implication here is that, without radiative properties in the atmosphere as such, the atmosphere could not even cool to outer space!

The problem that I have with this long standing simplification of why we should believe in the greenhouse effect is that believing in the ability of molecules to emit IR isn’t really the same thing as understanding why the IR properties would lead to surface warming *necessarily*. Also, we have no way of confirming what would happen to the Earth or any other planet, if we could magically eliminate IR effects (and perhaps try to observe whether the storms stop turning then)?

Eliminating the ability of all gases to interact with infrared is kind of a nonsensical scenario in any case, whether we are talking ‘classic’ IR gases like CO2 or H2O, or indeed, if we are talking generally about things like oxygen, nitrogen, or maybe even hydrogen if we were thinking about the atmospheres of Jupiter or other planets, etc (and I’m sure that these days it is possible to measure the IR effects of almost *any* gas, there’s always *some* “there” there, if you look for this).

Just focusing on on own atmosphere here on Earth, the implication seems always to be that only the easiest to measure molecules, like CO2, really count for ‘greenhouse effect’, whatever the greenhouse effect is really supposed to be. That powerful IR emitter, H2O, doesn’t count, because the behavior of *that* is complicated (H2O makes clouds, condenses into raindrops, etc). So ‘non-classical’ theory gases don’t count, even if one is considering a very large atmospheric fraction of oxygen, let’s say, while classically powerful H2O doesn’t count either, because, you know, that’s just too complicated!

Now, at this point, if I were to say that the ‘greenhouse effect’ causes weather, what do I mean? It could be that I am just saying that basic physics is needed for both IR effects and also for weather effects, so there you go! Alternatively, maybe the implication is that on our own watery planet, just eliminating CO2 (as a ‘genie’ or a ‘Maxwell’s demon’ experiment, say), would instantly do something important to the weather?

IMO, it would be better to say that we can hardly imagine what the universe would be like if substances like gases didn’t interact with IR.

To put it another way, it isn’t the existence of weather that validates physics as such. It is really the existence of the entire universe that ultimately requires us to believe in some sort of physics.

Reply to  David Blenkinsop
June 9, 2023 1:03 pm

 weather as we know it would not exist

It’s rather that lower atmosphere heats from the bottom but generally releases heat from higher up where it is cooler.

This creates a non-equilibrium steady-state from which dynamic motions develop. There is a spatial separation between the warm surface and the average effective outgoing radiating height.

This spatial separation creates dissipative dynamic process. The efficiency of the dissipating system is defined by T_in-T_out/T_in. This is measure of generation of free energy, or Carnot efficiency.

One can argue about the figures, but perhaps the Earth has settled into a non-equilibrium steady state efficiency of (288-255)/288 in K.

So entropy is produced at a rate of (1/255K)-(1/288K) x Turbulent Flux from surface to the radiating height, which is about 100 Wm-2. This works out to something like 0.05 Wm-2/K of dissipative flux in converting the solar beam to outgoing LW radiation. This is the non-heating power of weather.

In general terms, it is conceivable for internal trace gas effects to vary, but for the steady state dynamical non-equilibrium dissipating system (weather) to vary in a way to maintain the boundary conditions. The Earth has considerable freedom to do so via phase changes of water.

For radiative forcing by trace gas to warm the surface, thereby increasing the difference between the lower warm surface and the allegedly fixed higher colder emission temperature, one would have to prove there will be a change in Carnot efficiency of the dissipative system. A tall task.

David Blenkinsop
Reply to  JCM
June 9, 2023 10:10 pm

Myself, I’m not sure at this moment how to properly fit ‘Carnot efficiency’ into a critique of greenhouse theory. One thing that seems clear is that if the atmosphere is a heat engine, driving winds derived from temperature differences, then, by the same token, the atmosphere is also a heat pump, or heat transformer, deriving temperatures from the air movements as such.

If the atmosphere is a grand heat transformer, i.e. a leverager of temperatures, then everything comes into play, with no easy way to tell what the control knob really ought to be.

June 9, 2023 4:28 pm

The degree of pattern similarity between models and observations “

ie.. we figured out how to tweak the model parameters to match observations.

Usually we do it the other way around. !

Reply to  bnice2000
June 9, 2023 4:39 pm

the vertical profile pattern does not match in a very critical way. the source anomalous warming is at the surface, not above the surface.

Reply to  bnice2000
June 12, 2023 12:02 pm

We tweak observations to match the model parameters? I’ve noticed that certain climate modelers have that approach, but is that the “we” you refer to?

Geoff Sherrington
June 9, 2023 7:47 pm

The standard atmosphere shows density of air at sea level is 1.23 kg/m^3 while at 20km altitude, density is 0.089 kg/m^3.
This broadly means that there are about 15 times fewer molecules in a given volume at that height. What does temperature mean at altitude? That it is 15 times less capable ot forcing by radiative effects so often discussed (but seldom with clarity)?
Geoff S

June 9, 2023 8:27 pm

Whether the temperature changes in the stratosphere are due to solar EUV activity or due to CO2 depends heavily on the EUV data sets. The TIMED/SEE data set is on its 12 revision, whereas the SOHO/SEM data set is only on its 4th. Using the TIMED/SEE data set, 2008/2009 minimum had the same EUV intensity as the prior minimum, and therefore the culprit the abnormal drop in temperature of the stratosphere is deemed to be CO2. On the other hand, using the SOHO/SEM data set, the drop in stratospheric temperature is due to the abnormal drop in solar EUV activity which resulted in a collapse of the thermosphere. See by Leonid Didkovsky and Seth Wieman

June 9, 2023 11:05 pm

“But for the sake of argument, I will give the authors the benefit of the doubt and agree that most of the observed cooling is probably due to increasing CO2, which in turn is likely mostly due to burning of fossil fuels.”

Why does he give in so easily? If the natural CO2 cycle is, what, 2 orders of magnitude larger than our effect, than why is any supposed change in climate humanity fault?

I would like for us to be able to take credit for saving all lifeforms on this planet from a return of the ice ages, but even that isn’t assured!

Gunga Din
June 10, 2023 10:41 am

If the science of the “A” in CAGW was settled decades ago, why are they still trying to find Man’s “fingerprint”?

Reply to  Gunga Din
June 12, 2023 12:05 pm

Because right now all they have is Mann’s fingerprints, and those are greasy and unappealing.

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