>Climate Progress Posts My Comment, Returns It To Awaiting-Moderation Limbo, Then Deletes It

>My comment must’ve been good. So here’s what happened.

“Yes, The Globe Is Warming. But How Fast?”

That’s the title of the July 8, 2008 post by Joe Romm at ClimateProgress, in which he attempts to isolate natural causes of climate change, then make the case that they account for very little of the increase in global temperature over the past 100+ years.

First he uses the ENSO correction recently posted by Gavin Schmidt over at RealClimate as a source.

Then he goes on to misrepresent the PDO and throws in a few worthless links. Or maybe he misinterpreted the PDO, or maybe misunderstands it, or maybe he was misinformed. He missed it nonetheless.

Last, he made an attempt to include solar, with a few more links, before he concludes the world is coming to an end.

In addition to the error on the PDO, I noted a few things missing from his evaluation: THC or MOC, and long-term effects of ENSO, especially as it pertains to polar and high-latitude NH amplification. I didn’t bother addressing ACRIMS versus PMOD. The other errors and omissions were enough for one comment.

I posted my comment early in the morning on July 9, 2008. The website accepted it and advised that the post is awaiting moderation. I checked in the afternoon. The comment had been posted, but there was no response to it by Joe Romm. I returned to the webpage that evening to discover that the comment had returned to awaiting-moderation mode. I was encouraged, actually, thinking he would have something to say. The next morning it was still awaiting moderation. Later that afternoon (July 10, 2008), I checked again, and Joe had deleted my comment.


I checked the wayback machine, but it takes a few months for things to show up there.

What could I have said that would require Joe to go through two steps before he deleted it?


(NOTE: I’ve posted the graphs in the following but left in the tinypic links I used at ClimateProgress).

First: The PDO is not an SST residual like the AMO. It is an aftereffect of ENSO, calculated using statistical devices. Refer to my discussion of the PDO.
If you were to plot long-term monthly data sets of the PDO and ENSO side by side, you’d note they’re fundamentally the same signal, yet the PDO is standardized, which amplifies its signal.

Second: Your simple analysis fails to consider the effects of thermohaline circulation (THC) or meridional overturning circulation (MOC). The Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) is widely known.


Here are a few more examples that I’ve extracted from the Smith and Reynolds SST data set, ERSST.v2:



Most contain the significant drop then rise in SST from the late 19th to the mid 20th centuries. This is unaccounted for in all long-term examinations of global temperature anomaly. There are many more. Refer to my series on Smith and Reynolds SST data.

Third: Your simple examination fails to consider the long-term effects of El Ninos on high-latitude and Arctic temperatures. These are predicted by GCMs and actually take place in the real world, too. Research polar amplification for this.


About Bob Tisdale

Research interest: the long-term aftereffects of El Niño and La Nina events on global sea surface temperature and ocean heat content. Author of the ebook Who Turned on the Heat? and regular contributor at WattsUpWithThat.
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