The baseline game
Ethon came flying in from Boulder for the New Year. He brought news of the second coming of Willis Eschenbach. You might remember Willis, he is the guy who, as Tim Lambert gently put it used some slight of hand on the Hansen 1988 prediction
Well, there are only two things you can do to make Hansen look bad -- you can misrepresent the results of his model, or you can misrepresent the instrumental record.Willis took door two over at Climate Fraudit when he drew in the HADCRUT3 data.
"The trick Eschenbach used was to use a single year for the baseline (1958-ER) instead of the thirty year average that is normally used (Hansen used 1951-1980-ER). Yes, it's another version of the disingenous baseline game that produced all those bogus "global warming ended in 1998" claims. Given the year to year variability of climate, by choosing the right year to use as a baseline you can manufacture almost any result you want."If you use the same thirty year average for the baselines, you get the temperature anomaly graph on the right. (Since Hansen et al. 1988 used 1951-1980 and HADCRUT3 used 1961-1990 you do have to be a bit careful). Lambert has a much sexier way of showing this, but Eli is only a humble hare.
There was lots of patting on the back over at CA, Willis was the hero of the day and then he made the mistake of getting into it with the crew at Deltoid and starting to blather about forcings and scenarios. It was pretty amusing when it turned out that he was using greenhouse gas growth scenarios from a 2006 Hansen paper and ascribing them to the 1988 one. Quite cross with Eli he was.
If you thought that was a class act, look at what Roger Pielke Jr. has done to address the question if global warming has stopped
Will someone go over there and mention that his act is wearing very thin.
UPDATE: Roger, points to a letter he got into Nature in April 08 with another version of his graph, one at least that uses the right baseline. . . . . . . except for the 2007 IPCC report which starts in 1990 about 0.05 oC above the others. If you move the green line down, Eli did, it lies just about on the 2001 IPCC projection which is fairly good. Roger, of course, only stated the 2007 projection in 2000. You can blow this figure up to see it better by clicking on it.
Oh yes, you can buy Ethon T Shirts over at the Miserable Shop of Prometheus. Tell em Eli sent you. If you are in Boulder, wear them to class.