Oops - Ocean warming? Not so much

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From the San Diego Union-Tribune:

Climate contrarian uncovers scientific error, upends major ocean warming study
Researchers with UC San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Princeton University recently walked back scientific findings published last month that showed oceans have been heating up dramatically faster than previously thought as a result of climate change.

In a paper published Oct. 31 in the journal Nature, researchers found that ocean temperatures had warmed 60 percent more than outlined by the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

However, the conclusion came under scrutiny after mathematician Nic Lewis, a critic of the scientific consensus around human-induced warming, posted a critique of the paper on the blog of Judith Curry, another well-known critic.

“The findings of the ... paper were peer reviewed and published in the world’s premier scientific journal and were given wide coverage in the English-speaking media,” Lewis wrote. “Despite this, a quick review of the first page of the paper was sufficient to raise doubts as to the accuracy of its results.”

Co-author Ralph Keeling, climate scientist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, took full blame and thanked Lewis for alerting him to the mistake.

This is the problem with much of so-called climate science these days. They are relying too much on various computer models for their work and we are getting the classic Garbage In, Garbage Out.

The authors could have simply measured the ocean temperature and found out that their model did not jive with reality. How would they measure the temperature of the ocean you ask?
Say hello to Project Argo:

Brief History of Argo
The name Argo was chosen to emphasize the strong complementary relationship of the global float array with the Jason satellite altimeter mission. In Greek mythology Jason sailed in a ship called "Argo" to capture the golden fleece.

Together the Argo and Jason data sets are assimilated into computer models developed by GODAE OceanView that will allow a test of our ability to forecast ocean climate. For the first time, the physical state of the upper ocean is being systematically measured and the data assimilated in near real-time into computer models. Argo builds on other upper-ocean ocean observing networks, extending their coverage in space an time, their depth range and accuracy, and enhancing them through the addition of salinity and velocity measurements. Argo is not confined to major shipping routes which can vary with season as the other upper-ocean observing networks are. Instead, the global array of 3,000 floats will be distributed roughly every 3 degrees (300km). Argo is the sole source of global subsurface datasets used in all ocean data assimilation models and reanalyses.

Here is a map of the current position of the floats:

20181114-argo.jpg

I would call that very good coverage. The floats are clever - they are neutrally buoyant with a small motor and a piston to pump in/out seawater. When they pump in seawater, the float sinks. When it hits 2,000 meters, the motor reverses and the float starts to ascend. As it does, it measures temperature, salinity and pressure (depth). When it bobs to the surface, it acquires a satellite, gets its position, uploads the data and acquires any programming changes. It then waits on the surface until it is time for its next dive. The program started in 2000 so we have 18 years of very solid data that is freely available to the public or any researcher.

The dodgy paper in question is here: Quantification of ocean heat uptake from changes in atmospheric O2 and CO2 composition and Resplandy et. al. should be ashamed of themselves. Very bad science.

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This page contains a single entry by DaveH published on November 14, 2018 11:48 AM.

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