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Another “climate change is a hoax” graph, completely free of facts!

Montkton World Net Daily Graph

Some tiny, insignificant website called “World Net Daily” has published a glorious tirade about how climate change is a total hoax, complete with the above graph. This is a perfect example of data not burdened by pesky “facts” or “reality”.

The graph looks fairly impressive, to be sure. It seems to suggest that the “theoretical models” that predicted global warming (red zone) are completely wrong, because the actual trend in temperatures (blue zone) has been one of cooling. In fact, the “error margin” on the prediction zone and the “error margin” on the actual trend zone don’t even overlap! Wow, obviously global warming is a complete scam.

Good conservatives approve of this message. Which is why they will not be interested in the liberally biased “facts” in the rest of this article.

The actual data in this graph is taken from the monthly global mean UAH observed lower-troposphere temperature anomalies (vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/uahncdc.lt). This graph goes all the way back into the deep and distant past of the year 2005. Of course, the models that generate predictions of global warming usually go back until at least the 1970’s.  The source data (click on the previous link) goes back to 1978.

By creating a trend line based only on 2005-2013, they are effectively “cherry-picking” the data.  Weather data is very noisy, like the stock market or the children of liberal parents. When you observe only a very short period of time, almost anything can seem like it’s happening.

For example, in following graph we show the same experimental data with four different trend lines: one that starts from the beginning of the data set (1978), one based on data since 2000, one based on data since 2001, and one based on data since 2011.

Global Temperature: four trendlines

Obviously, because of the large fluctuations in the data, you can pretty much pick a data range to predict anything you want, if the tool that you are using is linear regression. Moreover, when you pick a very narrow range of time, it creates the illusion that your “margin of error” is very small. The only reason the margin of error in the model predictions in the first graph (red area) is so large is because it’s based on modeling a much larger data set, going farther back in time.

Now, the screaming headline “global warming has exploded since 2011!” (green line) is no more nor less accurate than the headline “the world has been cooling since 2005!” (the original graph, above), because global warming is a statement about long-term trends in climate, not fluctuations in temperature that span less than a decade.

All of these, however, are just  “liberal facts”. They have no place in good, conservative articles that appear on “World Net Daily”.

 

graph data source: http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/uahncdc.lt
graph found via: World Net Daily

related story: UNSKEWED GRAPH: Scientists split on climate change

 

 
11 Comments  comments 

11 Responses

  1. Mitch

    I stopped reading when I saw World Net Daily. No further information required.

    • Actually, it’s exactly the same commentary, written by exactly the same person, just with a slightly loftier tone for a different website.

      But the same logical errors and statistical errors exist in both articles. They are written by the same person.

      • No, Lord Monckton wrote the first (WND article), and the other, Dr Norman Page (Ph. D. in Geology). Lord Monckton is a politician and has science based degree.

        • SHOULD READ: “Lord Monckton is a politician and has ‘NO’ science based degree.”

          • Smokey

            papagiorgio,

            In fact, Lord Monckton has a degree in Mathematics, which is basic to every science degree. Further, he knows more about the subject than those who challenge him. In a real debate over man-made global warming, Lord Monckton destroyed the alarmist opposition arrayed against him.

            In a venue composed of an audience that was pre-disposed to accept the man-made global warming assertion [and had voted that way prior to the debate], Monckton emerged victorious, handily winning the debate.

            It is typical of the climate alarmist crowd to try to denigrate their opponents with ad-hominem arguments, because they lack the facts to win a science-based argument. Attacking Lord Monckton for not possessing a particular degree, in which the parameters are carefully set to exclude him, might have worked twenty years ago. But now there are plenty of knowledgeable people who have the truth on their side. You won’t find scientists who claim that a degree in Mathematics excludes someone from understanding the climate debate. Thus, that is an invalid argument.

            Face it, the only way for the alarmist crowd to prevail in the climate debate is to place the goal posts in an inaccessible location. When there is a debate such as the one at Oxford, the truth comes out: the climate alarmist crowd ddoes not have the facts necessary to win:

            http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/05/24/lord-monckton-wins-global-warming-debate-at-oxford-union

            I have a whole folder full of similar climate debates; links upon request. Every debate has been won by the scientific skeptics. Not one debate was won by climate alarmists. That is the reason that the alarmists will no longer debate the question of man-made global warming: they always lose those debates.

        • Oops! My bad. I thought you were linking to this:

          http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/05/05/benchmarking-ipccs-warming-predictions/

          which is on the same “wattsupwiththat” website, and is by Lord What’s-his-name. But you were linking to a different article, so: my mistake, I apologize.

          However, I would respectfully submit that similar criticisms still hold with the article you linked to. Whenever you’re looking at noisy data, the concept of “overfitting” is a huge, huge problem. You can use a complete Fourier analysis so say something like “I think we are currently in a period of 30 year cooling!” but over long periods of time, that kind of analysis is meaningless because it is SUPER-sensitive to small variances and fluctuations in short-term data.

          The less complex way of saying that is to make the point the article makes, above: there is too much dependence on short-term variability to say what the “trend” is in a decades-long interval in a situation like this. You have to look at a larger scope.

  2. Smokey

    I could post a graph going back hundreds of years, and which shows that there is NO acceleration in global warming, despite the 40% rise in CO2. In fact, I have several such graphs, some peer reviewed.

    They all show conclusively that there is no acceleration in [naturally] rising global temperatures since the Little Ice Age, thus confirming the fact that CO2 does not have the claimed global warming effect.

    But why bother? The climate alarmist contingent is quasi-religious. They are True Believers, and glaciers could cover Chicago a mile thick — they would still be running around in circles like Chicken Little, shouting, “The sky is falling!!”

    There is no arguing with religious fanatics, no matter how many facts are produced. They simply Believe. No arguing with that is possible.

    papagiorgio200 is right. Watts’ site is the most reliable resource by far. That is the gold standard, go-to site if someone wants to learn about this subject. Winner of the last 3 consecutive “Best Science” sites in the Weblog Awards. Check it out.

  3. Christian_J.

    I really cannot go past without calling you out on your usual mental masturbations.

    First – You actually show the record where it demonstrates that cooling is current for the last decade and a half, well done.

    Alexa Rating on World News Daily – wnd.com

    wnd.com is a top 5,000 site
    Rank:1,983

    Second – Again, the usual response about sites that are not of the lunatic left, are always claimed to be minor but are in actual fact well visited sites like World News Daily. Nice try though but do try sticking to the facts instead of promoting your usual incomprehensible, cognisant dissonant, fanciful and delusional interpretations of the facts. There is a good little leftist drone.

  4. Craig King

    It is interesting to see that the sensitivity of the climate to increasing CO2 has been systematically overstated so far. It looks to me that the dangerous or catastrophic part of the AGW narrative has been removed leaving us with the interesting but not alarming slow and small increase in global temperatures.

    Also interesting is the fact that weather events are no worse than they ever have been and that the weather remains consistent within the normal bands of experience. Hurricanes, tornados, rainfall, drought, snow, temperature, all behaving in a very unalarming way.

    The political objectives of the alarmists are quite obvious but the science and data surrounding man made CO2 and its effects are simply not playing ball. The climate models that incorporate everything known and hypothesised about the climate are proving to be wrong and that has nothing to do with the size of the computers or the modelling skills of the specialists but it has everything to do with the climatologists theories.

    Time for new theories.

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