UPDATE (September 10, 2012):
My new book Who Turned on the Heat? – The Unsuspected Global Warming Culprit, El Niño-Southern Oscillationis now on sale in pdf form for US$8.00 – Please click here to buy a copy. (Paypal or Credit/Debit Card). The Updated Preview includes the Table of Contents; the Introduction; the beginning of Section 1, with the cartoon-like illustrations; the discussion About the Cover; and the Closing.
UPDATE (September 5, 2012):
Since many of the visitors here are looking for more information about me—I can’t understand why—I’ve added the following:
I have been studying manmade global warming/climate change/climate disruption/insert latest catch-name here for a decade or two. I understand the hypothesis of anthropogenic greenhouse gas-driven warming of surface temperatures and of the global oceans. In fact, early on, I was a true-blue believer in the assumption that man was responsible for most of the recent global warming. A TV special in the early 1990s sparked my interest. In it the camera followed a climate scientist into a glass-walled room with a massive mainframe computer, and the scientist said it took months for the computer to simulate global climate for some period of time—whether the computer was simulating climate for decades, centuries or millennia, I don’t recall. Whatever the time span, the computer sat number-crunching for months to give the scientist an output. I was impressed. The climate scientist, if memory serves, was Dr. James Hansen of the NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS).
My skepticism began with the ever-increasing number of reports of projected climate catastrophes. That was, from my recollection, sometime in the early 2000s, about the time I retired. Many of the predictions of impending disasters sounded extremely familiar, but earlier they’d been blamed on something else. If you’ll recall, starting in the late 1990s, everything was blamed on El Niño. Remarkably, many of the weather events now being hyped as greenhouse gas-related catastrophes by climate scientists and the media had previously been blamed on El Niño. It was as though the climate scientists didn’t like being upstaged by Mother Nature’s son El Niño, so the scientists tried and have been pretty successful, with the help of like-minded reporters, at redirecting blame to manmade greenhouse gases, primarily carbon dioxide. The blame game has reached such epidemic proportions that there are people who now actually believe global warming is causing the extreme weather events, including, depending on the season, heat waves, cold spells, flooding, drought, blizzards, reduced snow cover, etc.
Just in case you’ve forgotten or this happened before your time, there are dozens if not hundreds of El Niño cartoons on the web, blaming El Niño for everything under the sun. Some can be found on the webpage of El Niño cartoons from the Florida State University Center for Ocean-Atmosphere Prediction Studies (COAPS) website. Of course, there’s the October 25, 1997 NBC Saturday Night Live sketch with Chris Farley as El Niño. A copy of the script is here and a YouTube copy of a portion of the sketch is here.
Back to my backstory: In short, because of all of the predictions of impending doom and gloom, and because the cause of weather events had been transferred from Mother Nature to man, greenhouse gas-based anthropogenic global warming started to look hokey to me. Really hokey. My interests ebbed, and my studies slowed for a while; then I caught the global warming bug again.
70% of the surface of the Earth is covered by oceans, sea and lakes. Sea surface temperature records interested me, but I could find little information online. No one was blogging about them. I then discovered the NOAA National Operational Model Archive & Distribution System (NOMADS) website, which allows users to investigate many climate-related datasets. One of them was the now-obsolete NOAA extended sea surface temperature reconstruction dataset ERSST.v2. All a NOMADS user had to do was enter the desired coordinates and NOMADS produced the data. How convenient. So I started investigating.
Not long after, I opened my blog Climate Observations and began publishing posts about sea surface temperature data with lots of time-series graphs. Lots of time-series graphs. Now, if you were to do a Google image search for North Atlantic sea surface temperature anomalies or SST anomalies, for example, you’ll find my graphs and links to my posts.
As I began to divide the ocean basins into logical subsets, I noticed a reoccurring phenomenon: upward shifts in the sea surface temperature anomalies. Most of those shifts looked somewhat like step changes, but they also had characteristics of a saw tooth, with a sharp warming followed by multiyear cooling.
In January 2009, I published my first two-part blog post on the ENSO-caused upward sea surface temperature shifts. The posts were Can El Niño Events Explain All of the Global Warming Since 1976? – Part 1 and Part 2. They were also cross posted at WattsUpWithThat, so you may be interested in the comments on the threads here and here. If you’re not familiar with WattsUpWithThat, it’s the very popular weblog hosted by Anthony Watts. WattsUpWithThat is the internet’s most-viewed website on global warming and climate change and has been voted winner of numerous weblog science awards. Having Anthony Watts select one of your blog posts to cross post at WattsUpWithThat is big-time for a climate change blogger. About 125 of my 500+ blog posts (as of this writing) have appeared on WattsUpWithThat.
Some of you might be thinking the visitors to WattsUpWithThat simply agree with anything printed there and that they simply pat the author on the back, providing “pal review” for the authors of guest posts. Wrong you’d be. WattsUpWithThat is primarily visited by skeptical persons. They’re skeptical of other climate skeptics in addition to being skeptical of anthropogenic global warming. If there’s a flaw in your argument, it will be found and noted. Regular visitors there include physicists, oceanographers, statisticians, college professors, meteorologists, and climate scientists. WattsUpWithThat is also visited by proponents of manmade greenhouse gas-driven climate change. They provided the myths and failed arguments that were addressed in Section 7 of my recent book Who Turned on the Heat? Many of the discussions in its Section 4 were also prompted by their failed arguments.
In the 3 years since those two blog posts about El Niño-Southern Oscillation, I have confirmed the observations, expanded on them, and detailed ENSO processes using numerous datasets and animations created from data. I’ve presented those findings in dozens of blog posts, with each of those posts being scrutinized by people who are skeptical of just about everything.
The sharp rises were, in fact, responses to major El Niño events, but there were no sharp decreases associated with the La Niña events that followed them. Yet we’re told that a La Niña has the opposite effect of an El Niño. The surface temperature record clearly indicates they are not opposites. That’s one of the fundamental messages presented in this book. Also, to be able to grasp why that’s important and how it contributes to the long-term warming of global surface temperatures, one needs a basic understanding of the processes that cause El Niño and La Niña—and their long-term aftereffects. So I wrote a book. People have been asking me to write this book for the past couple of years.
If you’re wondering, I still understand the hypothesis of anthropogenic greenhouse gas-driven global warming, and I still believe it has an impact on the warming of land surfaces, albeit a small one. So if you want to categorize me based on my findings, I’m a lukewarmer—definitely not a global warming denier, though some have called me that. Classifying me as a denier is kind of silly when you think about it. Most of the data I present shows temperatures have warmed. I simply present it ways that allow it, the data, to explain why it has warmed.
You could also categorize me as an independent climate researcher. There aren’t many independent researchers investigating El Niño-Southern Oscillation or its long-term impacts on global surface temperatures. In fact, if you were to perform a Google image search of NINO3.4 sea surface temperature anomalies, the vast majority of the graphs and images are from my blog posts. Try it. Cut and paste NINO3.4 sea surface temperature anomalies into Google. Click over to images and start counting the number of times you see Bob Tisdale.
By independent I mean I am not employed in a research or academic position; I’m not obligated to publish results that encourage future funding for my research—that is, my research is not agenda-driven. I’m a retiree, a pensioner. The only funding I receive is from book sales and donations at my blog. Also, I’m independent inasmuch as I’m not tied to consensus opinions so that my findings will pass through the gauntlet of peer-review gatekeepers. Truth be told, it’s unlikely the results of my research would pass through that gauntlet because the satellite-era sea surface temperature data contradicts the tenets of the consensus.
UPDATE (February 18,2012): Bob has published his first ebook titled If the IPCC was Selling Manmade Global Warming as a Product, Would the FTC Stop Their Deceptive Ads? It is is intended for readers interested in anthropogenic global warming/climate change who have limited technical or science backgrounds, to show and explain how:
1. the IPCC has exaggerated the capabilities of the climate models they employ to make projections of future climate,
2. the comparisons of the surface temperature data and the IPCC’s climate model simulations for the 20thCentury actually contradict the hypothesis of anthropogenic global warming,
3. there is a very logical and natural explanation for most of the warming that has taken place over the past 30 years. Since the El Niño-Southern Oscillation is responsible for that warming, the book includes a very basic but very detailed explanation of that natural phenomenon. And,
4. the data the readers need to research the subject on their own, if they desire, is available to them in an easy-to-use format.
Bob Tisdale is a retiree who is presently looking to return to the workforce or for funding that would allow him to continue his research into, and blog posts about, the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and other natural causes of global warming and climate change. His blog posts here at Climate Observations include periodic updates of Sea Surface Temperatures (Example) and Ocean Heat Content (Example), and detailed presentations of the multiyear aftereffects of El Niño-Southern Oscillation events (Example), of the natural causes of the rise in Ocean Heat Content since 1955 (See here, here, and here), and of the other modes of natural sea surface temperature variability such as the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (Example) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (Example). Bob has also prepared posts that illustrate the multiyear impacts and aftereffects of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) on combined global land+sea surface temperature data (Example) and on Lower Troposphere Temperature (TLT) anomalies (Example). And he has prepared posts that show how poorly the Coupled Climate Models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) actually represent past sea surface temperature variations, calling into question their use as attribution and climate projection tools (Examples here, here, and here). Bob’s “Introduction To” posts on natural modes of Sea Surface temperature variability; the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO); are visited daily by those looking for easy-to-read, well-illustrated, and detailed but basic discussions. In many of his posts, Bob uses animations of sea surface temperature anomaly maps (Example) and Ocean Heat Content anomaly maps (Example) to help illustrate the discussion. Like all skeptical climate change bloggers, Bob Tisdale relies on you, his readers, for support.