Category Archives: Climate Science Meetings

AALS Workshop on Torts, Environment and Disaster June 8 – 10, 2012 Berkeley, California

I was alerted to a meeting [h/t Jason Johnston] in which the claim that skillful multi-decadal regional climate model predictions are available and can be used in litigation. This meeting is constructed on a flawed premise.  There is no such skill in regional climate prediction. This is discussed on my weblog; e.g. see

Kevin Trenberth Was Correct – “We Do Not Have Reliable Or Regional Predictions Of Climate”

and peer-reviewed papers; e.g. see

Pielke Sr., R.A., R. Wilby, D. Niyogi, F. Hossain, K. Dairuku, J. Adegoke, G. Kallos, T. Seastedt, and K. Suding, 2011: Dealing  with complexity and extreme events using a bottom-up, resource-based  vulnerability perspective. AGU Monograph on Complexity and  Extreme Events in Geosciences, in press.

and in my son’s weblog; e.g. see

A Handy Bullshit Button on Disasters and Climate Change

and his publications; e.g. see

The Climate Fix

The meeting announcement reads [highlight added]

AALS Workshop on Torts, Environment and Disaster June 8 – 10, 2012 Berkeley, California

Why Attend?

Rather than a singular catastrophic event, Hurricane Katrina seems more and more like the opening act in what will become known as an age of disaster.  Since Katrina, not only hurricanes, but also oil spills, earthquakes, floods, tornadoes, terrorist attacks, volcanoes, heat waves, blizzards, and all manner of other disasters seem to be occurring in the United States and across the globe with increasing regularity and destructiveness.  The sober predictions of climate models suggest that the frequency and scale of weather-related events will continue to increase. The implications of this age of disaster for environmental law are profound, including the rise of vulnerability assessment and adaptation planning as new areas of expertise, the renewal of debate over scientific uncertainty and worst case scenarios as key drivers of policy, and the challenge of defining and achieving justice for disaster victims.

Disaster takes center stage for this Mid-Year Meeting, the first in Environmental Law since 2004 and the first to be organized concurrently with a Tort Law event.  This Workshop – Torts, Environment and Disaster – will bring together scholars and teachers for two days of intensive presentations and discussion on disaster.  Plenary sessions for both Environmental Law and Tort Law attendees will consider such topics as the history and psychology of disaster and perspectives on the precautionary principle.  Environmental Law sessions will include such topics as disaster planning and prevention, federalism and disaster, and climate change adaptation.  Engaging lunchtime speakers, professional development and teaching sessions, and breakout group discussion will round out the program.

Planning Committee for AALS Workshop on Torts, Environment and Disaster

Robin K. Craig, Florida State University College of Law

Eileen Gauna, University of New Mexico School of Law

Laura Hines, University of Kansas School of Law,Chair

Douglas A. Kysar, Yale Law School

Robert L. Rabin, Stanford Law School

Anthony J. Sebok, Yeshiva University Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law

Lisa Grow Sun, Brigham Young University J. Reuben Clark Law School

Who Should Attend?  Law teachers interested in environmental law, natural resources law, oil and gas law and disasters.

When? The workshop will begin on Friday, June 8 with registration at 4:00 p.m. followed by a reception at 6:00 p.m. and the documentary film, “Out of the Ashes: 9/11” at 8:00 p.m. The program will include two full days of plenary sessions and concurrent sessions specific to Torts and Environment and small group discussions. The workshop will conclude at 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 10, 2012. In addition to the program sessions, there will be luncheons on Saturday and Sunday and another reception on Saturday evening.

Where?  The Mid-Year Meeting will be held at the Claremont Hotel in Berkeley, California. The room rate is $189 for single or double occupancy; subject to a nightly sales tax of 14.065%. Hotel reservations will be available in January.

Meeting Registration?  Look for meeting registration coming in January 2012.  You may register for both the Workshop on Torts, Environment and Disaster and Workshop on When Technology Disrupts Law:  How Do IP, Internet and Bio Law Adapt.  The registration fees for faculty at AALS member and fee-paid law schools are: $495 Early Bird Registration, $535 After Early Bird Date, and $780 for both workshops.


The Workshop includes both Torts and Environmental Law concurrent plenary sessions.  Below are the plenary sessions that are designed for both Torts and Environmental Law interests as well as the Environmental Law specific plenary sessions.

I have extracted one of the  abstracts of a session to illustrate how off-base this meeting is

Environmental Law Plenary: Climate Adaptation
Victor B. Flatt, University of North Carolina School of Law
Carolyn Kousky, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University,
Cambridge, MA
J. B. Ruhl, Vanderbilt University Law School
Moderator: Robin K. Craig, Florida State University College of Law

Climate change threatens to become the most global and most dangerousof human-caused disasters, although individual communities, nations, and regions are most likely to experience climate change as increasingly continual “natural” disasters – increased numbers of hurricanes and cyclones, rising sea levels, droughts, floods, loss of key crops, invasions of pests, and increasing outbreaks of various kinds of diseases – typhoid, cholera, malaria – once thought to be more-or-less under human control. This panel explores the concept of climate change adaptation as disaster preparedness and will examine climate change impacts to both humans and other species, the status of climate change as a disaster, and potential adaptation responses.

It is clear that this part of the legal profession has bought into a view of climate science which is not supported by the scientific evidence.  

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2012 SORCE Science Meeting – Call For Abstracts: “Models Of Spectral Irradiance Variability: Origins In The Solar Atmosphere And Impacts On Earth’s Atmosphere”

2012 SORCE Science Meeting – Call for Abstracts [highlight added]

“Models of Spectral Irradiance Variability: Origins in the solar atmosphere and impacts on Earth’s atmosphere”

September 18-19, 2012  ***   Annapolis, Maryland

We are pleased to announce the 2012 Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) Science Meeting.  We will examine modeling efforts to understand solar spectral irradiance (SSI) variability, in terms of both its origins in the solar atmosphere and its impact on Earth’s climate and atmosphere. Sessions will be organized around the following key questions:

*         Development of 3-D models of the solar atmosphere are rapidly progressing; how will these models further our understanding of the radiative properties of the solar atmosphere relative to static 1-D models?

*         Do small scale processes on the Sun scale to give irradiance variability, and do they give a reasonable explanation of changes that can occur on decadal or centennial scales that relate to climate change?

*         Does incorporating SSI data into GCMs improve the prediction skills of these models, and do different models produce similar results with the same solar input?

*         For both solar models and GCMs, how well do model predictions agree with observations over decadal time scales?

The format for this meeting consists of invited and contributed presentations in four theme sessions.  We encourage your participation and hope that you will share this announcement with colleagues.  The 2012 Meeting will be held jointly with the NASA GSFC / CU LASP Sun Climate Research Center Symposium.

Deadlines: Abstract:  June 29, 2012 Pre-Registration:  Aug. 17, 2012 Hotel:  Aug. 17, 2012

Thanks, Vanessa George LASP, Univ. of Colorado, Boulder

source of image

My Comment: I am glad that SORCE continues to focus on the Sun-climate relationship and is thinking broadly about the climate issue.

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An Example Of The Dissemination Of Incorrect Climate Science Information To Young Scientists

There is an article in the April 2012 issue of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society

McNeeley, Shannon M., and Coauthors, 2012: Catalyzing Frontiers in Water-Climate-Society Research: A View from Early Career Scientists and Junior Faculty. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 93, 477–484. doi:

which includes informative text and recommendations, but also has a really major misstatement of climate science. The overarching view of the article is presented by referring to a quote by Roger Pulwarty Director of NOAA’s National Integrated Drought Information System to the NCAR Jr. Faculty Forum on July 2010 that

“We have to ask ourselves, are we doing the right thing? Or are we using scientific information to do the wrong thing more precisely?”

This question is directly related to what we reported on in our article with respect to multi-decadal climate predictions.

Pielke Sr., R.A., and R.L. Wilby, 2012: Regional climate downscaling – what’s the point? Eos Forum,  93, No. 5, 52-53, doi:10.1029/2012EO050008.

The McNeeley et al 2012 article has an effective overview of the importance of water to society, but has an obsession with “climate change” as the major risk. They write [highlight added]

The anticipated hydrological, ecological, and societal impacts from climate change challenge a number of long-held assumptions in water resource management. Climate change science teaches us that long-term planning (e.g., decadal or longer) can no longer rely on the past as a primary predictor of future conditions (i.e., assumptions of stationarity must be replaced with considerations of nonstationarity). We are likely to see climatic and hydrologic conditions that are outside of our range of direct experience, even for short-term planning (e.g., days, months, a year, 5–10 years), and could ultimately shift to a new “normal” or baseline state.

Rather than recognize that climate of the past does provide essential information to plan for the future, the article makes the erroneous assumption that climate was stationary in the past. Climate has never been stationary. For example, as we documented  in

Rial, J., R.A. Pielke Sr., M. Beniston, M. Claussen, J. Canadell, P. Cox,  H. Held, N. de Noblet-Ducoudre, R. Prinn, J. Reynolds, and J.D. Salas,  2004: Nonlinearities, feedbacks and critical thresholds within the Earth’s  climate system. Climatic Change, 65, 11-38.

The Earth’s climate system is highly nonlinear: inputs and outputs are not proportional, change is often episodic and abrupt, rather than slow and gradual, and multiple equilibria are the norm.

There is also no evidence as stated in the McNeeley that “we can no longer rely on the past as a primary predictor of future conditions“. This really quite an absurd claim as it assumes that changes in climate statistics as they affect water and other environmental and social resources are going to fall outside of what happened in the past. In other words, that climate change is so large as to change completely the climate of a region.

A more inclusive approach is what we have recommended in our article

Pielke Sr., R.A., R. Wilby, D. Niyogi, F. Hossain, K. Dairuku, J. Adegoke, G. Kallos, T. Seastedt, and K. Suding, 2012: Dealing  with complexity and extreme events using a bottom-up, resource-based  vulnerability perspective. AGU Monograph on Complexity and  Extreme Events in Geosciences, in press


With respect to weather patterns, for the downscaling regional (and global) models to add value over and beyond what is available from the historical, recent paleo-record, and worse case sequence of days, however, they must be able to skillfully predict the changes in the regional weather statistics. There is only value for predicting climate change if they could skillfully predict the changes in the statistics of the weather and other aspects of the climate system. There is no evidence, however, that the models can predict changes in these climate statistics even in hindcast.

The statement in McNeeley et al 2012 that

We are likely to see climatic and hydrologic conditions that are outside of our range of direct experience, even for short-term planning (e.g., days, months, a year, 5–10 years), and could ultimately shift to a new “normal” or baseline state.

has no basis in science. It is more of the misinformation that is given to not only policymakers, but also now young scientists. In answer to the question posed by Roger Pulwarty

“We have to ask ourselves, are we doing the right thing? Or are we using scientific information to do the wrong thing more precisely?”

the answer is clearly No.  Scientific information is being misused as represented by the text I extracted from the McNeeley et al 2012 paper.

source of image

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Meeting Announcement “Non-CO2 Influences Of Land Cover Changes On Climate” At The European Geosciences Union General Assembly – Vienna, 22 – 27 April 2012

I received this meeting announcement today. I am pleased to see this much need broadening beyond CO2 and a few other greenhouse gases. The use of carbon stocks as the measure of climate change is, by itself, insufficient to characterize the climate system. The meeting will add important new insight into non-CO2 climate forcings. The information on the meeting follows.

I wanted to bring to your attention a session entitled “Non-CO2 influences of land cover changes on climate” at the European Geosciences Union General Assembly (Vienna, 22 – 27 April 2012), that Pierre Bernier, Vivek Arora, Alvaro Montenegro and I are organizing. Abstracts must be submitted by 17 January 2012. We hope that you can participate. It would be a chance to get researchers in this field to come together to present and discuss findings.


Neil Bird (on behalf of Pierre, Vivek and Alvaro)

Ps. Please forward this email to colleagues that may be interested

BG2.4 Non-CO2 influences of land cover changes on climate

Convener: P.Y. Bernier [cid:image001.gif@01CCBB48.AF8D3C50] <javascript:void(0)> Co-Conveners: D. N. Bird [cid:image001.gif@01CCBB48.AF8D3C50] <javascript:void(0)> , V. Arora [cid:image001.gif@01CCBB48.AF8D3C50] <javascript:void(0)> , A. Montenegro [cid:image001.gif@01CCBB48.AF8D3C50] <javascript:void(0)> Abstract Submission<>

Convener Login<>

Changes in land cover properties that accompany land use changes can impact climate. Changes in carbon stocks are used as a convenient proxy for these climate impacts, but changes in other land cover properties can also affect the climate in ways that can amplify or diminish the effect of carbon stock changes. This session will be open to presentations on changes in albedo, latent heat transfer and other mechanisms through which land cover changes affect climate at regional to global scales.

source of image 

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Advocacy Of A Particular Climate Science Perspective By A Panel Sponsored By The American Geophysical Union

In the November 29 2011 issue of EOS, there is an American Geophysical Union (AGU) announcement on “communicating climate science across a variety of media platforms. Is is reproduced above. The selection of the panel members shows clearly an advocacy perspective by whoever set up this AGU presentation. This can easily be shown by the selection of the panel members, which I have summarized below. I do not question the scenerity of the panel members, but objective readers of them will clearly see that this “communication” by the AGU is actually an advocacy for a particular perspective with respect to climate science and resultant  policies [highlight added]

1. Ton Strawa – a Catholic Climate Ambassador. This program is described as

We are pleased to introduce 24 trained Catholic Climate Ambassadors.  These 24 Ambassadors  are available to offer presentations on the moral implications of climate change consistent with Catholic teaching as outlined by our Holy Father in his World Day of Peace Message of 2010, If You Want to Cultivate Peace, Protect Creation, and in the U.S. Catholic bishops’ statement, Global Climate Change: A Plea for Dialogue, Prudence and the Common Good.

Since 2006, the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change, the organization responsible for the Ambassador program, has played a pivotal role in the U.S. Catholic response to the enormous challenge of climate change. The Coalition and its many partners, including the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), has developed strategies for to foster the spiritual formation and education of Catholics, to create resources, programs and projects that engage youth, families and parishioners, and to spur action that leads to public policy change at local, national and international levels.

The Catholic Climate Ambassador program is intended to accelerate these efforts by raising the awareness of Catholics around the U.S. who worship in our parishes, learn in our schools and lead our many ministries. The Ambassadors are charged with  promoting the Catholic Climate Covenant: The St. Francis Pledge to Care for Creation and the Poor.

Please contact any of the following Ambassadors for a speaking engagement.  Ambassador travel expenses are expected to be covered by the Organization  sponsoring their speaking engagement.

Tony Strawa’s credentials are described as

Anthony (Tony) Strawa, Ph.D. San Jose, California

Education: Ph.D., Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering with a minor in Electrical Engineering, Stanford University, M.S., Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering, Stanford University, M.A., Management and Supervision, Central Michigan University,  B.S. Aeronautical Engineering, United States Air Force Academy Background:  Dr. Strawa has spent the last 20 years of his professional life working as an Atmospheric Scientist with NASA, and is currently the Chair of the Diocese of San Jose Climate Change Initiative.  Dr. Strawa recognizes climate change as one of the great challenges facing humanity this century from a scientific, economic, and ethical perspective, and feels called to motivate people to more fully address climate change through their Catholic faith.

Dan Satterfield – author of Dan’s Wild Wild Science Journal blog and chief meteorologist for WHNT-TV (which he just resigned from; see).

Here is what he has written  at his weblog

Besides this journal, I’ve also developed the Wild Wild Climate page, and am working on a complete refresh of my Wild Wild Weather page. The Wild Wild Weather Page has been online for 15 years now!

One of the reasons I started writing this blog, is the huge amount of disinformation online about real science and especially climate change.In spite of what you may have heard, scientists are no longer debating whether the Earth is warming, or if humans are causing it.

The definitive answer to both questions is settled. It’s yes.

Here is how he describes himself

Hi there! I’m Dan Satterfield,

I’ve worked as a forecast meteorologist for 32 years and am the Chief Meteorologist for the CBS affiliate in Huntsville Al. I’m a graduate of the University of Oklahoma with a degree in Meteorology (Atmospheric Physics) and have a Masters in Earth Science. I grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but my favourite place on Earth (Other than the polar regions) is London. (Huge Doctor Who fan!)

In one of his recent weblog posts, he writes

The release of the emails is likely connected to the release of the BEST study headed by Dr. Richard Muller. Muller was the darling of the deniers after expressing some doubts about the accuracy of the surface temperature record. With the rapidly dwindling numbers of skeptics in the science community, Muller was their last, best hope. Imagine their horror, when his much heralded independent study of the temperature record, ended up confirming NASA, NOAA and the UK Hadley Center. The Daily Show had a rather hilarious take on all this and it is well worth watching.

It seems to me that virtually all of the criticism of climate researchers is rooted, not in a distrust of the science, but is instead based on an extreme fear of the consequences of their findings.

3. Richard Alley –Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences at Penn State and host of EARTH: The Operators’ Manual series on PBS

His vita includes

Chaired National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council panel on Abrupt Climate Change, to advise the U.S. Government on research activities to address the possibility of climate surprises (Abrupt Climate Change: Inevitable Surprises, National Academy Press, 2002) and then led effort to publish synopsis for wider audience in Science; much additional advice on climate-change issues to government, including OSTP, NSF, EPA, NOAA, contacts in Mexico and Canada, much activity in the IPCC process, providing text to the NSF that was used in a speech by the U.S. President, meeting with the U.S. Vice President, and testifying before a U.S. Senate committee.

At the PBS website, he is described as follows

Richard Alley is Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences and EMS Environment Institute at Penn State. He is one of several Penn State earth scientists who contributes to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shared the 2007 Nobel Prize with Al Gore. Alley’s teaching philosophy focuses on helping students to discover the motivation, tools, and background knowledge to contribute to society as lifelong learners.

Here are several of the PBS videos that are summarized on the PBS website:

More Videos featuring Richard Alley

Conversations: Richard Alley
– Available for purchase on DVD
Richard Alley discusses the latest climate change developments and what we can do to make a difference.

Huddle with the Faculty: Richard Alley
A Lark in the Parks: Communicating the Joy of Science in a YouTube World

Inside Global Warming
Available for purchase on DVD
Watch Alley examine the science and future of climate change

Human Role in Climate Change
Learn how continued carbon dioxide emissions could increase the spread of diseases, raise temperatures, and submerge entire countries under water and find out what you can do to quell the trend.

John Cook – creator and author of the website Skeptical Science

On that weblog, he writes

Explaining climate change science & rebutting global warming misinformation

Scientific skepticism is healthy. Scientists should always challenge themselves to improve their understanding. Yet this isn’t what happens with climate change denial. Skeptics vigorously criticise any evidence that supports man-made global warming and yet embrace any argument, op-ed, blog or study that refutes global warming. This website gets skeptical about global warming skepticism. Do their arguments have any scientific basis? What does the peer reviewed scientific literature say?

Here is what John writes about himself

 Lastly, for those wondering about who runs Skeptical Science, the website is maintained by John Cook. I studied physics at the University of Queensland but currently, I’m not a professional scientist I run this website as a layman. People sometimes wonder why I spend so much time on this site and which group backs me. No group funds me. I receive no funding other than the occasional Paypal donations. As the lack of funding limits how much time I can spend developing the site, donations are appreciated. My motivations are two-fold: as a parent, I care about the world my daughter will grow up in and as a Christian, I feel a strong obligation to the poor and vulnerable who are hardest hit by climate change. Of course these are very personal reasons – I’m sure everyone comes at this from different angles. I go more deeply into my motivations in Why I care about climate change.

As readers of my weblog know, I have had a generally negative view of the objectivity of Skeptical Science (e.g. see).

My Summary

The four individuals who have been selected to “communicate” the AGU view of climate science are  certainly welcome to express their individual views. However, they are presenting only one perspective of climate science.  Any objective person who has knowledge of the climate system will immediately see this bias. However, those who are less familiar with the science issues will be misinformed by their perspectives. The AGU, by permitting this communication, is further losing its prestige as an objective framework to present scientific findings with respect to climate.  This AGU panel is presenting the Democratic viewpoint which I discussed yesterday.

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Summary Report on International Conference on Climate Change: Shifting Science and Changing Policies

I was alerted by Barun Mitra of the Liberty Institute of India to a meeting summary of the

International Conference on Climate Change: Shifting Science and Changing Policies

The abstract of the meeting reads

The International Conference on Climate Change provided an opportunity to scientists, policy makers, scholars, and students to critically look at the issue of climate change with the context of shifting science and the changing policies. The goal was to limit the rampant fear mongering, exaggerated claims and media hype, which are casting a shadow on rational assessment of climate and objectively shaping policies to address the possible impact of changes in climate.

I am posting the url of the meeting summary with its abstracts for interested readers to look at.  For example, the Policy Implications session was summarized below.

The conference concluded with its final session detailing on the necessary and changing policies associated with climate change and related facets. The session involved three speakers- Dr. Bjarne Lembke, a physician and a specialist in occupational health; Pooja Kotiyal, Technical-project associate from the Ministry of Environment and Forest; and Mr. Barun Mitra, founder and director of Liberty Institute, and recipient of the Julian L. Simon Award 2005.

a) Dr. Lembke argued that the increasing number of vector borne diseases is, rather than a consequence of increasing temperatures as stated in the IPCC, is from the enormous urbanisation which is taking place on our planet. He stated that while 50% of the human population nowadays lives in big cities, people lose their natural immunity against many diseases. He said, global warming and climate changes have been adopted by the politicians and converted to a weapon for controlling people. Also, urban young people have 3 to 4% higher psychosomatic problems than 50 years ago. Instead of frightening people with disinformation about diseases and coastal flooding, they should be given true information and knowledge. He claims that the fear of global warming steals the limelight for real problems related to the “urbanization revolution”.

b) Ms. Kotiyal outlined the evolution of energy-environmental policies in the context of India’s National Action Plan on Climate Change. The key point underlined by her during the session was the need to understand the underlying process facilitating the evolution of energy-environmental policy landscape, its various elements and instruments therein. Kingdon’s multiple streams model was used to determine the evolution of these policy domains in India during the last three decades. Within the developed framework of analysis the NAPCC, its legitimacy and adequacy were analyzed as well as various other energy-environment policies were also reviewed by detailing the objectives and functions.

c) Mr Barun Mitra argued that decarbonisation of the world economy has been going on for the past 500 years, since mankind moved from using wood and charcoal to coal. Moreover, decarbonisation of the economies is an almost natural process which evolves due to the human need to become more energy efficient. He said, this has been a secular trend, quite irrespective of whether carbon emissions are causing global warming or not. In the event that an increasing level of carbon dioxide may contribute to global warming, this could be neutralized by the market economic system. A competitive market will continuously strive for greater energy efficiency, thus reducing the carbon intensity of the economy. Presenting examples of economies that have been decarbonising, he showed how the India economy has been following the same path towards decarbonisation after the initiative of economic liberalisation in the early 1990s. This trend has been sustained without any specific environment and climate policies, or laws. Developing countries like India, in his view, must have the freedom to choose the most efficient energy solutions in order to pursue their economic development.

Readers are invited to read the summaries of the other talks.

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Schedule Of Presentations At The Third Santa Fe Conference On Global and Regional Climate Variability, October 31-November 4, 2011

This promises to be an interesting Conference. The Schedule is presented below. [the formating is not set clear but the titles and presentors should be clear enough]. This meeting will have a diverse set of viewpoints presented.


The Third Santa  Fe Conference on Global and Regional Climate Variability, October 31-November 4, 2011

Schedule of Presentations 

Monday Morning, October 31, 2011
Registration and continental breakfast ……..7:20-8:20
Welcome: Duncan McBranch, LANL, Deputy Principal Associate Director    ………………………………………………   8:20-8:30
Introduction: Petr Chylek ……………………..8:30-8:40
M-I: Models, Forcing, and Feedbacks  (Chairs: Jerry North and  V. Ramaswamy)
M-1: P. Huybers (Harvard) Regional Temperature Predictions from a Minimalist Model   8:50-9:10
M-2: J. Curry (Georgia Tech) A Critical Look at the IPCC AR4 Climate Change Detection and Attribution   9:10-9:30
M-3: R. Lindzen (MIT) Climate v. Climate Alarm   9:30-9:50
M-4: A. Tsonis (Wisconsin) A new dynamical mechanism for major climate shifts   9:50-10:10

Discussion   10:10-10:25
Coffee and Refreshment   10:25-10:55
M-II: Aerosols and Clouds  (Chairs: Hans von Storch and Jon Reisner)  
M-5: P. Rasch (PNNL) Exploration of aerosol, cloud and dynamical feedbacks in the climate-cryosphere system   10:55-11:15
M-6: D. Rosenfeld (Hebrew U Jerusalem) Number of activated CCN as a key property in cloud-aerosol interactions   11:15-11:35
M-7: W. Cotton (CSU) Potential impacts of aerosols on water resources in the Colorado River Basin………………….…..11:35-11:55
M-8: B. Stevens (Max Planck Institute) The Cloud Conundrum   11:55-12:15

Discussion   12:15-12:30

Monday Afternoon, October 31
M-III: The Arctic (Chairs: Peter Webster and William Lipscomb)
M-9:  I. Polyakov (U Alaska) Recent and Long-Term Changes in the Arctic Climate System   2:00-2:20
M-10: J. Sedlacek (ETH Zurich) Impact of a reduced sea ice cover on lower latitudes   2:20-2:40
M-11: S. Mernild (LANL) Accelerated melting and disappearance of glaciers and ice caps.   2:40-3:00  
M-12: D. Easterbrook (Western Washington U) Ice core isotope data: The past is the key to the future   3:00-3:20

Discussion   3:20-3:35
Coffee and Refreshment     3:35-4:05

M-IV: Models, Forcing, and Feedbacks  (Chairs: Anastasios Tsonis and Anjuli Bamzai)
M-13: J-S von Storch (Max Planck Institute) Dynamical impact of warming pattern     4:05-4:25
M-14: Q. Fu (U Washington) Warming in the tropical upper troposphere: Models versus observation   4:25-4:45
M-15: S. Schwartz (BNL) Earth’s transient and equilibrium climate sensitivities   4:45-5:05
M-16: R. Salawitch (U Maryland) Impact of aerosols, ocean circulation, and internal feedbacks on climate   5:05-5:25
M-17: N. Andronova (U Michigan) Climate sensitivity and climate feedbacks ………………………………………………..5:25-5:45
Discussion   5:45-6:00

Poster Session P-I  (with Refreshment)   6:00-8:00
Poster Session P-I
Monday, October 31
Chairs:  Graeme Stephens, Roger Davis, and Brad Flowers
Tim Garret, U Utah
Will a warmer Arctic be a cleaner Arctic?
H. von Storch, A. Bunde,
Inst. of Coastal Res., Germany
Examples of using long term memory in climate analysis
P. Chylek, C. Folland, et al
LANL, UK Met Office
Observed and model simulated 20th century Arctic temperature variability: Anthropogenic warming and natural climate variability
K. McKinnon, P. Huybers, Harvard U
The fingerprint of ocean on seasonal and inter-annual temperature change
Anthony Davis, JPL
Frontiers in Remote Sensing: Multi-Pixel and/or Time-Domain Techniques
Christopher Monckton
Is CO2 mitigation cost-effective?
H. Moosmuller, et al
Desert Res. Inst., U Nevada
A Development of a Super-continuum Photoacoustic Aerosol Absorption and Albedo Spectrometer for the Characterization of Aerosol Optics
H. Inhaber, Risk Concept
Will Wind Fulfill its Promise of CO2 Reductions?
M. Chen, J. Rowland, et al
Temporal and Spatial Patterns in Thermokarst Lake Area Change in Yukon Flats, Alaska: an Indication of Permafrost Degradation
M. Kafatos, H. El-Askary, et al
Schmid College, WMO
Multi-Model Simulations and satellite observations for Assessing Impacts of Climate Variability on the Agro-ecosystems
C. Xu, et al, LANL, NCAR
Toward a mechanistic modeling of nitrogen limitation on vegetation dynamics
H. Hayden, U Connecticut
Doing the Obvious: Linearizing
L. Hinzman, U Alaska
The Need for System Scale Studies in Polar Regions
X. Jiang, et al, LANL, NCAR
Regional-scale vegetation die-off in response to climate Change in the 21st century

Tuesday Morning, November 1
Registration and continental breakfast   7:30-8:30
T-I: Models, Forcing and Feedbacks  (Chairs: Peter Huybers and Joel Rowland)
T-1: V. Ramaswamy (NOAA GFDL) Addressing the leading scientific challenges in climate modeling,   8:30-8:50
T-2: P. Webster (Georgia Tech) Challenges in deconvoluting internal and forced climate change   8:50-9:10
T-3: H. von Storch (Institute for Coastal Research, Hamburg) Added value generated by regional climate models   9:10-9:30   
T-4: A. Solomon (U Colorado) Decadal predictability of tropical Indo-Pacific Ocean temperature trends   9:30-9:50
Discussion     9:50-10:05
Coffee and Refreshment   10:05-10:35
T-II: Observations (Judy Curry and Manvendra Dubey)
T-5: S. Wofsy (Harvard) HIAPER Pole to Pole Observations (HIPPO) of climatically important gases and aerosols   10:35-10:55
T-6: R. Muller (UC Berkeley) The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Land Results     10:55-11:15
T-7: R. Rohde (Berkeley Temp Project) A new estimate of the Earth land surface temperature   11:15-11:35
T-8: F. Singer (SEPP) Is the reported global surface warming of 1979 to 1997 real?   11:35-11:55
T-9: J. Xu (NOAA) Evaluation of temperature trends from multiple Radiosondes and Reanalysis products   11:55-12:15
Discussion   12:15-12:30

Tuesday Afternoon, November 1
T-III: Cosmic Rays, and the Sun  (Chairs: Don Wuebbles and Anthony Davis)
T-10: P. Brekke (Space Center, Norway) Does the Sun Contribute to climate change? An update   2:00-2:20
T-11: G. Kopp (U Colorado) Solar irradiance and climate   2:20-2:40
T-12: A. Shapiro (World Radiation Center, Davos) Present and past solar irradiance: a quest for understanding     2:40-3:00  
T-13: B. Tinsley (U Texas) The effects of cosmic rays on CCN and climate     3:00-3:20
Discussion   3:20-3:35
Coffee and Refreshment   3:35-4:05

T-IV: Aerosols and Clouds (Chairs: William Cotton and Daniel Rosenfeld)
T-14:  J. Vernier (NASA Langley) Accurate estimate of the stratospheric aerosol optical depth for climate simulations     4:05-4:25
T-15: J. Coakley (Oregon SU) Knowledge gained about marine stratocumulus and the aerosol indirect effect   4:25-4:45
T-16: G. Stephens (NASA JPL) Clouds, aerosols, radiation, rain and climate   4:45-5:05
T-17: J. Augustine (NOAA) Surface radiation budget measurements from NOAA’s SURFRAD network   5:05-5:25
T-18: G. Jennings (Ireland National U) Direct Radiative Forcing over the North East Atlantic …………………….5:25-5:40
Discussion   5:40-5:55
Banquet   6:30-8:00
B-1: Judy Curry (Georgia Tech) The uncertainty monster at the climate science-policy interface
B-2: Anjuli Bamzai (NSF) Global and regional climate change research at NSF: Current activity and future plans

Wednesday Morning, November 2
Registration and continental breakfast   7:10-8:10
W-I: Weather, Climate, and Arctic Terrestrial Processes (Chairs: Larry Hinzman and Cathy Wilson)
W-0: T. Schuur (U Florida) Vulnerability of Permafrost Carbon Research Coordination Network ………………8:10-8:30
W-1: H. Epstein (U Virginia) Recent dynamics of arctic tundra vegetation: Observations and modeling   8:30-8:50
W-2: E. Euskirchen (U Alaska) Quantifying CO2 fluxes across permafrost and soil moisture gradients in arctic Alaska   8:50-9:10
W-3: D. Lawrence (NCAR) High-latitude terrestrial climate change feedbacks in an Earth System Model   9:10-9:30   
W-4: D. Wuebbles U Illinois) Severe weather in a changing climate     9:30-9:50

Discussion   9:50-10:05
Coffee and Refreshment   10:05-10:35
W-II: The Arctic  (Chairs: Qiang Fu and Keeley Costigan)
W-5: M. Flanner (U Michigan) Arctic climate: Unique vulnerability and complex response to aerosols   10:35-10:55
W-6: R. Stone (NOAA) Characterization and direct radiative impact of Arctic aerosols: Observed and modeled   10:55-11:15
W-7: M. Zelinka (LLNL) Climate feedbacks and poleward energy flux changes in a warming climate   11:15-11:35
W-8: G. De Boer (U Colorado) The present-day Arctic atmosphere in CCSM4   11:35-11:55
W-9: R. Peltier (U Toronto) Rapid climate change in the Arctic: the case of Younger-Dryas cold reversal     11:55-12:15

Discussion   12:15-12:30
Wednesday Afternoon, November 2
W-III: Arctic and Global Climate Variability (Chairs: Igor Polyakov and Sebestian Mernild)
W-10: G. North (Texas A&M) Looking for climate signals in ice core data   2:00-2:20
W-11: T. Kobashi (National Inst Polar Research, Tokyo) High variability of Greenland temperature over the past 4000 years   2:20-2:40
W-12: M. Palus (Inst Comp Sci, Prague) Phase coherence between solar/geomagnetic activity and climate variability     2:40-3:00  
W-13: N. Scafetta (Duke U) The climate oscillations: Analysis, implication and their astronomical origin   3:00-3:20

Discussion …………………………………3:20-3:35
Coffee and Refreshment …………………3:35-4:05
W-IV: Greenhouse Gases, Aerosols, and Energy Balance (Steve Wofsy and James Coakley)
W-14: M. Dubey (LANL) Multiscale greenhouse gas measurements of fossil energy emissions and climate feedbacks   4:05-4:25
W-15: C. Loehle (Nat Council for Air Improvement) Climate change attribution using empirical decomposition     4:25-4:45
W-16: R. Davies (U Auckland) The greenhouse effect of clouds: Observation and theory   4:45-5:05
W-17: V. Grewe (Inst Atmos Physics, Oberpfaffenhofen) Attributing climate change to NOx emissions   5:05-5:25
Discussion………………………………. 5:25-5:40
Poster Session P-II……………………5:40-7:00
Poster Session P-II

Wednesday November 2, 2011
Chairs: Mark Flanner, Hans Moosmuller, and Dave Higdon
Chris Borel-Donohue,
Air Force Institute of Technology
Novel Temperature/Emissivity Separation Algorithms for Hyperspectral Imaging Data
R. Stone, J. Augustine, E. Dutton,    NOAA, Earth System Res. Lab.
Radiative Forcing Efficiency of the Fourmile Canyon Fire Smoke: A Near-Perfect Ad Hoc Experiment
Fred Singer,
Are observed and modeled patterns of temperature trends ‘Consistent’? Comparing the ‘Fingerprints’
Brian A Tinsley,
University of Texas at Dallas
Charge Modulation of Aerosol Scavenging (CMAS): Causing Changes in Cyclone Vorticity and European Winter Circulation?
A. V. Shapiro, et al, World Rad. Center, Davos, Switzerland
The stratospheric ozone response to a discrepancy of the SSI data
M. Palus, et al, Inst. of Computer Science, Prague, Czech Republic
Discerning connectivity from dynamics in climate networks
Mark Boslough, SNL
Comparison of Climate Forecasts: Expert Opinions vs. Prediction Markets
C. Gangodagamage, et al
Clustering and Intermittency of Daily Air Temperature Fluctuations
in the North-Central Temperate Region of the U.S.
Michael LuValle,
OFS Laboratories
Suggested attribution of Irene’s flooding in New Jersey (2011) via statistical postdiction derived from chaos theory
A. Winguth, et al.,
University of Texas, Arlington
Climate Response at the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum to Greenhouse Gas Forcing – An Analog for Future Climate Change
David Mascarenas, et al
The development of Autonomous Mobile Sensor Nodes for CO2 Source/Sink                 Characterization
Richard Field, Paul Constantine, and Mark Boslough, SNL
Statistical Surrogate Models for Estimating Probability of High-Consequence Climate Change
Steve Schwartz, BNL
Earth’s transient and equilibrium climate sensitivities

Thursday Morning, November
Registration and continental breakfast   7:30-8:30
Th-I: Theory, Experiment, and Observations (Chairs: Brian Tinsley and Nick Hengartner)
Th-1: J. Curtius (Frankfurt U) Atmospheric aerosol nucleation in the CLOUD experiment at CERN   8:30-8:50
Th-2: E. Dunne (U Leeds) The influence of ion-induced nucleation on atmospheric aerosols in CERN CLOUD experiment   8:50-9:10
Th-3: W. Hsieh (UBC) Machine learning methods in climate and weather research   9:10-9:30
Th-4: C. Essex (U Western Ontario) Regime algebra and climate theory   9:30-9:50
Discussion   9:50-10:05
Coffee and Refreshment   10:05-10:35
Th-II: Atlantic Ocean and Climate (Chairs: Anastasios Tsonis and Nicola Scaffeta)
Th-5: M. Hecht (LANL) A perspective on some strength and weaknesses of ocean climate models…………………10:35-10:55
Th-6: L. Frankcombe (Utrecht U) Atlantic multidecadal variability – a stochastic dynamical systems point of view ………10:55-11:15
Th-7: S. Mahajan (ORNL) Impact of the AMOC on Arctic Sea-ice variability …………………………..11:15 11:35

Th-8: P. Chylek (LANL) Ice core evidence for a high spatial and temporal variability of the AMO…………………. 11:35-11:55

Th-9: M. Vianna (Oceanica, Brazil) On the 20 year sea level fluctuation mode in Atlantic Ocean and the AMO   11:55-12:15

Discussion   12:15-12:30

Thursday Afternoon, November 3

Th-III: Climate Change and Vegetation (Chairs: Michael Cai and Thom Rahn)
Th-10: N. McDowell (LANL) Climate, carbon, and vegetation mortality   2:00-2:20
Th-11: D. Gutzler (UNM) Observed and projected hydroclimatic variability and change in the southwestern United States     2:20-2:40
Th-12: C. Allen (USGS) Tree mortality and forest die-off response to climate change stresses at regional to global scales   2:40-3:00
Th-13: J. Chambers (LBL) Carbon balance of an old-growth Central Amazon forest   3:00-3:20
Discussion   3:20-3:35
Coffee and Refreshment   3:35-4:05
Th-IV: Climate Change and Economics (Chairs: Richard Lindzen and John Augustine)
Th-14: T. Garrett (U Utah) Thermodynamic constrains on long-term anthropogenic emission scenarios   4:05-4:25
Th-15: C. Monckton   Is CO2 mitigation cost-effective?   4:25-4:45
Th-16: D. Pasqualini (LANL) Does the climate change the economy? An investigation on local economic impact   4:45-5:05
Th-17: M. Boslough (SNL) Using prediction market to evaluate various global warming hypotheses   5:05-5:25
Discussion     5:25-5:40      

Friday Morning, November 4
Registration and continental breakfast   7:30-8:30
F-I: Observations (Chairs: Steve Love and Brad  Henderson)
F-1: A. Davis (NASA JPL) Cloud and aerosol remote sensing: Thinking outside the photon state-space box   8:30-8:50
F-2: H. Moosmuller (DRI U Nevada) Aerosol optics, direct radiative forcing, and climate change   8:50-9:10
F-3: N-A Morner (Paleogeophysics, Stockholm) Sea level changes in the Indian Ocean: Observational facts   9:10-9:30   
F-4: O. Kalashnikova (NASA JPL) MISR decadal aerosol observations   9:30-9:50
Discussion     9:50-10:05
Coffee and Refreshment   10:05-10:35
F-II: Models, Forcing, and Feedbacks  (Chairs: Tim Garrett and Chris Essex)
F-5: D. Lemoine (U Arizona) Formalizing uncertainty about climate feedbacks   10:35-10:55
F-6: P. Knappenberger, Short-term climate model projected trends of global temperature and observations   10:55-11:15
F-7: C. Keller (LANL) Solar forcing of climate: A review   11:15-11:35
F-8: W. Gray (CSU) Recent multi-century climate changes as a result of variation in the global ocean’s deep MOC   11:35-11:55
F-9: C. Folland (UK Met Office) Global surface temperature trends from six forcing and internal variability factors   11:55-12:15
Discussion   12:15-12:30
Conference ends   12:30


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Meeting Announcement “Third Santa Fe Conference On Global and Regional Climate Change”

Santa Fe New Mexico


There is an important upcoming meeting

Third Santa Fe Conference on Global and Regional Climate Change

which promises to be a very important contribution to the climate change issue.

The announcment starts with the text

This conference will focus on climate change and variability from observational and modeling perspectives. Special emphasis will be on climate forcings and feedbacks on global and regional scale, including polar regions. Contributions based on conventional as well as non-conventional views on climate change and variability are welcome.

The submission information is

Abstract Submission Deadline is September 12.
Post-Deadline for posters only is October 3.

Please email your abstracts to Petr Chylek and Manvendra K. Dubey prior to registering. Abstracts will be reviewed and you will be notified of your acceptance prior to the late registration deadline of September 12. Accepted abstracts should be submitted during the registration process. email to:,

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Another Example Of The Misuse Of Climate Science

On my weblog, I continue to post examples of the misrepresentation of climate predictions decades from now as skillful forecasts for the impact communities. Below, I post yet another example –  in this case a seminar presented in mid-June in Boulder. The announcement for the seminar that was held at NOAA’s David Skaggs Research Center reads

Brian Ashe
Manager of Business Development,
Riverside Technologies, Inc.

The Climate Change-Decision Support System:  A Web-Based System for Water Managers
and Planners

THURSDAY, JUNE 16, 10:00 A.m., Room 1D708

Riverside will present a briefing and demonstration of their Climate Change Decision
Support System (CC-DSS).  The aim of the CC-DSS, which was supported by a NOAA SBIR,
is to provide a web-based system for widespread and low-cost access to tools used
in generating scenarios of future water managers to rapidly assess the impact of
 projected climate change on natural flows at critical nodes along a river network.
 The system uses various IPCC driven global climate models that have been downscaled
to basin scales to drive calibrated hydrologic models.

Here is yet another example where

“The system uses various IPCC driven global climate models that have been downscaled
to basin scales to drive calibrated hydrologic models.”

As presented in our paper

Pielke Sr., R.A., R. Wilby, D. Niyogi, F. Hossain, K. Dairuku, J. Adegoke, G. Kallos, T. Seastedt, and K. Suding, 2011: Dealing with complexity and extreme events using a bottom-up, resource-based vulnerability perspective. AGU Monograph on Complexity and Extreme Events in Geosciences, in press

there is no skill in downcaling multi-decadal climate predictions from global climate models.  This approach has never been shown capable of predicting changes on this time scale in the statistics of weather on basin scales (or any other spatial scale). 

 In my view, ultimately, such studies will be recognized as misleading policymakers to the actual threats to water resources. The sooner the funders realize this, the less money and time that will be wasted. It would be an informative research project for someone to document how many NSF, NOAA and other agency funds (in the USA and elsewhere) are being spent to provide such multi-decadal climate forecasts.

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My Comments On An AGU Meeting Announcement – Regional Climate Prediction at High Resolution

I was alerted to a meeting for the upcoming December 2011 AGU meeting.  After presenting the session title and abstract, and I have some comments.  The meeting is titled Regional Climate Prediction Session with the following announcement

Date: Fri, 15 Jul 2011 13:59:17 -0600

From: James Done (of UCAR)

Dear All

We invite you to submit abstracts to our session on Regional Climate Prediction at High Resolution at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, 5-9 Dec 2011, San Francisco, CA. Abstract Deadline: 4th Aug.

Session Details:

GC09: Regional Climate Modeling 3. Regional Climate Prediction at High Resolution
Sponsor: Global Environmental Change (GC)
Co-Sponsor(s): Atmospheric Sciences (A), Earth and Space Science
Informatics (IN), Public Affairs (PA)

1. Greg Holland, NCAR
2. Howard Kunreuther, Wharton, University of Pennsylvania
3. William Skamarock, NCAR

Regional climate predictions at high resolution and decadal time scales are needed by industry, government and society to enable sufficient understanding and mitigate future costs and disruptions. This exciting session will present the latest scientific results and applications in high resolution climate prediction. Presentations are invited on: predictions of regional climate and high-impact weather statistics on decadal time scales, including uncertainty; coupled data assimilation for regional coupled prediction systems; coupled regional Earth system processes; statistical downscaling, and societal decision support tools. This session will stimulate interaction between diverse areas of expertise and promote novel collaboration.

Many thanks,
James Done

My comments on this announcement follow:

First, as outlined on my weblog; e.g. see

The Failure Of Dynamic Downscaling As Adding Value to Multi-Decadal Regional Climate Prediction

and in our paper

Pielke Sr., R.A., R. Wilby, D. Niyogi, F. Hossain, K. Dairuku, J. Adegoke, G. Kallos, T. Seastedt, and K. Suding, 2011: Dealing with complexity and extreme events using a bottom-up, resource-based vulnerability perspective. AGU Monograph on Complexity and Extreme Events in Geosciences, in press.

there has been NO demonstrated multi-decadal climate regional predictive skill.  Unless the AGU session is going to present papers that introduce evidence of this skill the portion of their session which is on

“….predictions of regional climate and high-impact weather statistics on decadal time scales, including uncertainty…”

is not only worthless but will be misleading policymakers.

Second, their statement that

‘Regional climate predictions at high resolution and decadal time scales are needed by industry, government and society to enable sufficient understanding and mitigate future costs and disruptions”

is certainly a desirable goal, the presentation of regional decadal climate predictions as skillful is invalid. What is missing from their session is the need to introduce a new framework to provide estimates of risk on this time scale. We proposed such an approach in our Pielke et al 2011 paper where we wrote

“We discuss the adoption of a bottom-up, resource–based vulnerability approach in evaluating the effect of climate and other environmental and societal threats to societally critical resources. This vulnerability concept requires the determination of the major threats to local and regional water, food, energy, human health, and ecosystem function resources from extreme events including climate, but also from other social and environmental issues. After these threats are identified for each resource, then the relative risks can be compared with other risks in order to adopt optimal preferred mitigation/adaptation strategies.

This is a more inclusive way of assessing risks, including from climate variability and climate change than using the outcome vulnerability approach adopted by the IPCC. A contextual vulnerability assessment, using the bottom-up, resource-based framework is a more inclusive approach for policymakers to adopt effective mitigation and adaptation methodologies to deal with the complexity of the spectrum of social and environmental extreme events that will occur in the coming decades, as the range of threats are assessed, beyond just the focus on CO2 and a few other greenhouse gases as emphasized in the IPCC assessments.”

The 2011 AGU session talks on regional climate prediction at high resolution on decadal time scale will be scientifically flawed if they do not present how they can claim prediction skill on that time scale, and if they do not also consider a bottom-up, resource-based focus which is what is actually needed for

“…..industry, government and society to enable sufficient understanding [to] mitigate future costs and disruptions”.

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