Friday, March 16, 2007

Climate Alchemy - Turning Hot Air Into Gold

I have been having an ongoing discussion at Jane Galt about climate change. The discussion has been wide ranging, but what I want to focus on is the input data for the climate models and some of the problems with the models themselves.

I'm going to reprise my remarks here with block quotes. Block quotes in italics will be saved for other commenters. Revised and extended of course.

So let us look at the temperature record and how much reliance we should place on the data:
Temperature measurement instruments are not well enough calibrated to measure a 1 deg F signal over a 100 year span. A really expensive and well calibrated instrument re-calibrated weekly could probably measure down to the .1 deg F level in the field. If you have an above average instrument calibrated yearly you might get 1 deg F. Now try extrapolating that back to the days of glass thermomometers and humans reading the numbers.

And you want to tell me that within that error band you can find a 1 deg. F (.6 deg. C) signal (temp rise over the last 100 years)?

Oh yeah. Moving the measuring site 30 ft could easily cause as much as 1 deg F difference due to micro climate. Would you care to bet on how many measuring stations have moved 30 ft in the last 100 years? Would you want to make a trillion dollar bet?

OK. We are all libertarians here. When do I get my share of the really good hemp?
I never got offered the hemp. Just as well. :-)

I'm an electronics engineer by trade. I worked in aerospace which is one step below rocket science. Let me add that my aerospace specialty was instrumentation and control. So it is quite possible that I actually know something about the problems of measurement and control.

Read the rest at Power and Control

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