Category Archives: Climate Science Meetings

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: chylek@lanl.gov,dubey@lanl.gov

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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.

http://sites.agu.org/fallmeeting/ 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)

Convener(s):
1. Greg Holland, NCAR
2. Howard Kunreuther, Wharton, University of Pennsylvania
3. William Skamarock, NCAR
Description:

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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Update On The 2011 SORCE Meeting – Decadal Cycles In The Sun, Sun-like Stars, And Earth’s Climate System Sept. 13-16, 2011 Sedona, Arizona

I am pleased to announce that there will be somewhat more balance in the 2011 SORCE Meeting – Decadal Cycles in the Sun, Sun-like Stars, and Earth’s Climate System on Sept. 13-16, 2011 in Sedona, Arizona

 that I posted about on June 6 2011. I wrote in that post

From my view, the invited attendees are not going to provide a balanced perspective of the issues in climate science. For example, why was not David Douglass, Graeme Stephens, Roy Spencer,  Anastasios Tsonis and Sergev Kravtsov, or Dick Lindzen included in the Climate Sensitivity and Global Energy Imbalance session? They have a different perspective and conclusions than will be represented by the invitees listed in Session [4]. This would have been an excellent opportunity for a constructive debate among the attendees.”

One of the scientists that I recommended has now been invited – David Douglass is now on the agenda as shown below. 

The June/July 2011 SORCE Newsletter has the agenda for the session on  Climate Sensitivity and Global Imbalance on Thursday, Sept. 15

Session 4 – Climate Sensitivity and Global Imbalance

Gerald North, Texas A&M University Climate Sensitivity

Brian Soden, Rosenstiel School, Univ. of Miami, FL Understanding Climate Feedbacks Using Radiative Kernels

Andrew Dessler, Texas A&M University Observational Constraints on the Water Vapor and Cloud Feedbacks

Kevin E. Trenberth, NCAR, Boulder, Colorado Tracking Earth’s Energy: From El Niño to Global Warming

David Douglass, University of Rochester, New York Recent Energy Balance of the Earth – Update

Seiji Kato, NASA Langley Research Center Interannual Variability of Top-of-Atmosphere Albedo Observed by CERES Instruments

Sebastian Schmidt, LASP, University of Colorado-Boulder The Spectral Radiative Effects of Inhomogeneous Clouds and Aerosols

Still not a well balanced session, but certainly better than it was.

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Invitation To Submit An Abstract To “Impact of Land Use/Cover and Aerosol Changes on Mountain Weather and Climate” At The Fall AGU meeting (December 5-9, 2011

Please consider submitting an abstract to the session GC53 entitled

 “Impact of Land Use/Cover and Aerosol Changes on Mountain Weather and Climate” at the Fall AGU meeting (December 5-9, 2011) in San Francisco. 

For abstract submissions (Deadline: 4th August 2011), please visit: http://sites.agu.org/fallmeeting/

This session will feature invited presentations by Roni Avissar (University of Miami), Bill Cotton (Colorado State University) and William Lau (NASA).  A brief description of the session is as follows: GC53: Impact of Land Use/Cover and Aerosol Changes on Mountain Weather and Climate Sponsor: Global Environmental Change (GC)

Co-Sponsor(s): Atmospheric Sciences (A), Biogeosciences (B), Hydrology (H) Convener(s): Udaysankar Nair, University of Alabama in Huntsville; Dev Niyogi, Purdue University; Thomas Mölg, University of Innsbruck

Description: Mountain weather is often a major contributor to regional hydrology and hydroclimatic changes. While the changes in mountain climate are good indicators of the global climate trends, for accurate attribution regional forcing due to land use/cover change (LULC) and atmospheric aerosols also need to be assessed, which is complex and depends on both geography and the nature of the terrain. A number of field and simulation experiments are currently under way to understand these forcings. This session invites papers on a range of studies – process scale, impact assessments, synthesis, related to the LULC and atmospheric aerosols on terrain generated circulation, orographic cloud and precipitation formation.

Thank you

Udaysankar Nair (nair@nsstc.uah.edu)

Dev Niyogi (dniyogi@purdue.edu )

Thomas Mölg (thomas.moelg@uibk.ac.at)

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Confessions of Members Of The Climate Science Community

While it does not explicitly say so, an article in the May 2011 of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society has redefined the dominate climate issue. The authors might not admit that they have altered from the IPCC focus on global average surface temperature trends as the icon of climate change, but the reality of this change is obvious from their text.  In the report

National Research Council, 2005: Radiative forcing of climate change: Expanding the concept and addressing uncertainties. Committee on Radiative Forcing Effects on Climate Change, Climate Research Committee, Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, Division on Earth and Life Studies, The National Academies Press, Washington, D.C., 208 pp.

 it is written

“…..the traditional global mean TOA radiative forcing concept has some important limitations, which have come increasingly to light over the past decade. The concept is inadequate for some forcing agents, such as absorbing aerosols and land-use changes, that may have regional climate impacts much greater than would be predicted from TOA radiative forcing. Also, it diagnoses only one measure of climate change—global mean surface temperature response—while offering little information on regional climate change or precipitation. These limitations can be addressed by expanding the radiative forcing concept and through the introduction of additional forcing metrics. In particular, the concept needs to be extended to account for (1) the vertical structure of radiative forcing, (2) regional variability in radiative forcing, and (3) nonradiative forcing.”

Joe D’Aleo, Joe Bastardi, Judy Curry, Roy Spencer, Peter Webster and others who have been out front on this issue also need to be recognized for documenting a much more significant role of natural climate variability on seasonal, yearly, decadal and longer time scales.

The new article, which exemplifies where the broader climate community is finally starting to accept this more robust perspective on climate,  is

Mehta, Vikram, and Coauthors, 2011: Decadal Climate Predictability and Prediction: Where Are We?. Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 92, 637–640.doi: 10.1175/2010BAMS3025.1

Extracts from the paper read [highlight added]

The importance of decadal climate variability (DCV) research is being increasingly recognized, including by the World Climate Research Program (WCRP) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). An improved understanding of DCV is very important because stakeholders and policymakers want to know the likely climate trajectory for the coming decades for applications to water resources, agriculture, energy, and infrastructure development. Responding to this demand, many climate modeling groups in the United States, Europe, Japan, and elsewhere are gearing up to assess the potential for decadal climate predictions. The magnitudes of regional DCV often exceed those associated with the trends resulting from anthropogenic changes.”

“PREDICTABILITY AND PREDICTION. Initial decadal prediction efforts in the last few years show predictive skill of global average temperature up to a decade in advance using both initial conditions and the climate change signal created by already emitted greenhouse gases.”

This claim of decade surface temperature prediction skill, of course, is not supported by their lack of skill since 1998. The next section of their paper highlights the wide range of uncertainties for decadal prediction and the movement away from the global average surface temperature as the icon of climate change. For multi-decadal climate predictions, these uncertainties are necessarily even higher.

“THEORY AND MODELING. Although global coupled models designed in the last 15 years are able to generate DCV patterns that resemble observed DCV patterns, the models tend to displace them spatially and temporally with respect to observed patterns. Also, it has not been obvious that the same mechanisms operate in both models and nature to produce similar DCV patterns. A much better understanding of the physical mechanisms of DCV in nature is required. Without this, the sources and skills used to make decadal predictions will remain unreliable.”

“Among the known, major problems in global coupled models are large systematic biases; the absence of eddies and nonlinear interactions in ocean components; incorrect/inaccurate representation of planetary wave dynamics, interactions with eddies, 3D basin modes, and forced responses of basin modes; air–sea interaction; representation of vertical mixing in the upper ocean; and subpolar ocean dynamics, including the relative importance of temperature,salinity, wind-driven and thermohaline circulations, weak vertical stratification, and interactions with sea ice. The atmospheric components of the global coupled models are also not complete; the most important required additions are a well-resolved stratosphere that includes its chemical makeup, the representation of ice in the water cycle, and a better parameterization of convection, cloud physics, and tropospheric chemistry. Because resolution appears to be one of the model attributes influencing DCV time scales, model resolution is another aspect that needs major improvement. Major biases, however, are not removed simply by increasing resolution; persistent problems such as poor representations of the Indian summer monsoon rainfall still remain even in high resolution models.”

The confessions that are listed in this article are an implicit admission of the bankruptcy of the approach on climate assessments such as the 2007 IPCC WG1 report with its assumption that the multi-decadal climate model predictions are skillful.

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April/May 2011 Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment [SORCE] Newsletter Available

The April/May 2011 Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) Monthly Newsletter is available. Among the informative information in the newsletter is the announcement of the meeting

2011 SORCE Meeting – Decadal Cycles in the Sun, Sun-like Stars, and Earth’s Climate System – Sept. 13-16, 2011 Sedona, Arizona

with the session and speakers

Session 1 – Solar Irradiance Cycles

Matt DeLand, SSAI, Maryland Solar Cycle UV Irradiance Variability
Thierry Dudok de Wit, CNRS & Univ. of Orléans, France New Methods of Modeling the Solar Cycle Variations
Greg Kopp, LASP, Univ. of Colorado Status and Record of TSI Measurements
Judith Lean, NRL, Washington, DC Implications of Measurement Stability from Comparisons to Solar Regression Models
Peter Pilewskie, LASP, Univ. of Colorado SSI and Climate
Erik Richard, LASP, Univ. of Colorado Future SSI Record for JPSS TSIS
Werner Schmutz, PMOD/WRC, Davos, Switzerland PREMOS TSI Results
Yvonne Unruh, Imperial College, London Modeling SSI
Richard Willson, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Recent ACRIM Calibrations

Session 2 – Comparative Sun-Star Cycles

Tom Ayres, CASA, Univ. of Colorado What about the other Suns?
Ben Brown, University of Wisconsin-Madison Modeling Sun-like Stars
Wes Lockwood, Lowell Observatory, Flagstaff, Arizona Solar Variability after Dark: Photometric Evidence from Stars and Planets
Travis Metcalfe, NCAR, Boulder, Colorado Monitoring CA II H and K for Southern Solar-type Stars
Richard Radick, Air Force Res. Lab., NSO, Sunspot, NM Sun-like Stars Cycle Variations

Session 3 – Climate Sensitivity and Global Energy Imbalance

Andrew Dessler, Texas A&M University Observational Constraints on the Water Vapor and Cloud Feedbacks
Seiji Kato, NASA Langley Research Center Constancy/Stability of Earth’s Albedo
Gerald North, Texas A&M University Climate Sensitivity
Brian Soden, Rosenstiel School, Univ. of Miami, FL Climate Feedbacks
Kevin E. Trenberth, NCAR, Boulder, Colorado Tracking Earth’s Energy: From El Niño to Global Warming

Session 4 – Climate System Decadal Variability

Pat Hamill, San Jose State Univ., California Stratospheric Aerosols
Karin Labitzke, Prof.em. Freie Universität Berlin On the QBO-Solar Relationship Throughout the Year
Vikram Mehta, CRCES, Maryland Sun-Climate Variability
Mark Serreze, National Snow & Ice Data Center, CIRES, Univ. of Colorado Ice and Snow
Bill Swartz, John Hopkins University, APL Decadal Variability in the Atmosphere

Session 5 – Modeling and Forecasting Solar Cycles and Climate Impacts

Robert Cahalan, NASA GSFC Modeling Climate Change with SSI Variations
Judith Lean, NRL, Washington, DC Forecasting Solar Irradiance and Climate Change
Kyle Swanson, Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Climate Regime Shifts
Tom Woods, LASP, Univ. of Colorado State of Sun – SC 24

From my view, the invited attendees are not going to provide a balanced perspective of the issues in climate science. For example, why was not David Douglass, Graeme Stephens, Roy Spencer, Anastasios Tsonis and Sergev Kravtsov, or Dick Lindzen included in the Climate Sensitivity and Global Energy Imbalance session? They have a different perspective and conclusions than will be represented by the invitees listed in Session 3. This would have been an excellent opportunity for a constructive debate among the attendees.

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