Watts up with GCRs

Posted by John Byatt (swat team)

Today Anthony watts posts what he describes as a game changing admission from the IPCC AR5.
Lead story from the Second Order Draft: strong evidence for solar forcing beyond TSI now acknowledged by IPCC
Compared to the First Order Draft, the SOD now adds the following sentence, indicated in bold (page 7-43, lines 1-5, emphasis added):
Many empirical relationships have been reported between GCR or cosmogenic isotope archives and some aspects of the climate system (e.g., Bond et al., 2001; Dengel et al., 2009; Ram and Stolz, 1999). The forcing from changes in total solar irradiance alone does not seem to account for these observations, implying the existence of an amplifying mechanism such as the hypothesized GCR-cloud link. We focus here on observed relationships between GCR and aerosol and cloud properties.

First Point Anthony
Its only a “game changing admission” if you ignore the following four paragraphs. e.g.:
. Synthesis
Although there is some evidence that ionization from cosmic rays may enhance aerosol nucleation in the free troposphere, there is medium evidence and high agreement that the cosmic ray-ionization mechanism is too weak to influence global concentrations of CCN or their change over the last century or during a solar cycle in any climatically significant way. The lack of trend in the cosmic ray intensity over the last 50 years (Agee et al., 2012; McCracken and Beer, 2007) provides another strong arguement against the hypothesis of a major contribution of cosmic rays to ongoing climate change.”

second point Anthony

You do :realize that amplifying a negative number just gives you a bigger negative number, right? In other words, you’re arguing for bigger solar cooling since 1980.

Third and final point Anthony
establishing a significant GCR/cloud/climate link would require the following steps (given that we have known that ionisation plays a role in nucleation for decades). One would need to demonstrate:
… that increased nucleation gives rise to increased numbers of (much larger) cloud condensation nuclei (CCN)
… and that even in the presence of other CCN, ionisation changes can make a noticeable difference to total CCN
… and even if there were more CCN, you would need to show that this actually changed cloud properties significantly,
… and that given that change in cloud properties, you would need to show that it had a significant effect on radiative forcing.
Of course, to show that cosmic rays were actually responsible for some part of the recent warming, you would need to show that there was actually a decreasing trend in cosmic rays over recent decades – which is tricky, because there hasn’t been any

Acknowledgements . Dana, Zeke and Gavin

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8 responses to “Watts up with GCRs

  1. Sou

    Re amplifying negative numbers, arithmetic has always been a weakness of Tony’s. Might be one of the reasons for his inability to graduate.

    Regarding the tendency of deniers to switch back and forth from ‘it’s the sun’ to ‘it’s cosmic rays’ to ‘there’s no warming’ to ‘climate is always changing’ – they are impervious to the fact that many of their ‘arguments’ contradict each other and most are not supported by evidence – indeed many are contradicted by the evidence.

    The cosmic ray example is a classic case. Deniers won’t or can’t think it through to the logical conclusion.

  2. Sou

    Yes. He’s a good example of twisting around, among, behind and between the facts to get to the point he wants to make. He’ll do anything to avoid reality.

    I’m developing an interest in how the brain operates. The brain of extreme right wing ideologues doesn’t work quite the same way as that of most people as I understand it. It’s as if they have let the part of the brain that allows reasoned analysis to atrophy. Perhaps they should try some math puzzles. I read that the brain can change and function again even after serious injury or trauma if you do the right exercises. I reckon there would be brain exercises that would work as well or better with extreme conservatives as they do with those suffering PTSD or stroke victims. They’d need to be motivated to change, though. And change is something ultra conservatives fear more than anything, going by what I’ve read.

  3. john byatt

    Lead author of section confirms that the deniers got it backwards as usual


  4. john byatt

    This so called leaked IPCC report is going to be a headache for the politicians as we will know exactly what parts they have removed to downplay the urgency

    This may be the biggest back fire ever on the deniers,

    Karma rules

  5. Pingback: Another Week of GW News, December 16, 2012 – A Few Things Ill Considered