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Is it possible that governments have collectively lost their senses?and answers his own rhetorical
Yes, it is.
The risk to alarmists is that governments will catch up with the climate insouciance of their electorates and stop wasting money. Among other things, money will be saved by sacking people like Flannery and removing all of those research grants directed towards proving the undisprovable, which is that climate change does indeed exist and will eventually engulf our grandchildren in the most horrible of fates. Only research grants based on climate propositions which potentially can be shown to be false, in Popperian fashion, will be left standing; and few in number they will be.Tony Abbott may well be Australia's next Prime Minister. He has already suggest this. (link)
TONY Abbott has signalled he will sack Climate Commissioner Tim Flannery if he is elected as prime minister in September.
The Opposition Leader, who has vowed to dismantle the Climate Change department and merge it with the Environment Department in government, said he did not see the point of paying Professor Flannery around $180,000 a year for his views which were already public knowledge.
He said if elected as prime minister on September 14 and given the opportunity to revoke the carbon tax a whole range of climate change bureaucracies would also be axed.To counter this, Smith asks: "What to do? "
Hence we had Mr Flannery spruiking the latest report of the Climate Commission. He spoke of the angry summer; of 123 records broken; of it all taking us into new climate territory; and so on into what the PM might call hyper-bole.However, Murry Salby, Professor of Climate at Macquarie University, disputes their latest explosion of hysteria: (link)
The Climate Commission bases its claims on a selection of temperatures from the latest reincarnation of the record of surface thermometers, recently regenerated by the government-funded Bureau of Meteorology.
The surface record has been termed by the bureau as its high-quality data. If it is high quality, it is certainly not robust. The bureau's record is routinely readjusted, the next high-quality reincarnation rendering its predecessor obsolete. The adjustments performed are discretionary, applied differently to different sites in the surface network. And if the adjustments are understood, it is by few, if any, outside the bureau.
For this reason, the recent proclamation that this summer was unprecedented arrives with curious timing: it coincides with the onset of campaigning for the next federal election.
One record averts these limitations: satellite measurements from microwave sounding units and advanced microwave sounding units provide continuous coverage of Australia, with uniform sampling of the continent. The satellite record derives from a single instrument family. It follows from a single treatment applied uniformly to all data, yielding a record of continental temperature that is homogenous and stable. Unlike surface measurements, it represents temperature in the lowest couple of kilometres of the atmosphere. However, departures from average temperature in this layer mirror departures from average surface temperature - especially under summertime conditions, when convective overturning exchanges air vertically on time scales of only hours.
Figure 1 (above) displays the record of Australia mean temperature during January (blue) in its anomalous value (the departure from the long-term average January temperature). Last January was warmer than recent Januaries, but hardly unprecedented. It lies about a standard deviation above the average January temperature. And even during the relatively short satellite era, two Januaries were warmer. Superimposed is anomalous summertime temperature (red). It is even less remarkable. Near the three-decade average, it is no more significant than in preceding years. Neither record evidences a sustained shift in the continental baseline.
Figure 2 displays the record of anomalous temperature for all months. It places the summer of 2012-13 into perspective. Anomalous temperature (red solid circles) lies well within the envelope of other warm anomalies during the preceding three decades. Cold anomalies are just as numerous. If anything, they are even stronger.
For many on Australia's eastern seaboard, this summer was not anomalously hot but, rather, anomalously cool and wet. This is confirmed by the temperature record at Sydney. The central station reported only two marginal days. And during the entire summer maximum temperature reached 32C on only three days.
In the light of the satellite record, as well as the absence of any systematic change in global temperature for almost two decades, the proclaimed interpretation of this summer should be recognised for what it is: a simplistic explanation of a complex physical system.
As the Australian Election approaches, we can expect more alarming statements from our Climate Commission and associated bodies trying to shore up their appointments.
To (mis)quote Wayne Swan before the last Election - "That's an hysterically inaccurate claim!"