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Supermandia and the most supersilly Climategate rebuttal ever

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Watts Up With That?
November 24, 2011

I just got a nauseating email release from The Daily Climate that said:

DailyClimate.org is pleased to offer two opinion pieces by notable climate scientists commenting on the recent release of the climate  science emails.

Get a load of this headline:

Opinion: Snippets of stolen emails cannot make the Earth flat

Wow, make the earth flat? That has to be some sort award winning headline for the most stupid strawman argument ever. But then, look who is writing it –Supermandia

The first paragraph sets the nauseating tone:

Here is what we know: The Earth is round, smoking is linked to lung cancer, and humans are changing the climate by emitting massive amounts of heat-trapping carbon dioxide and other gases. Like extra blankets at night, those emissions are warming the planet.  The physics of greenhouse gases has been understood for more than 100 years.  It is not new science.

[Update: Hmmm, commenter John-X points out this reference from Mike Mann’s PSU meteorology dept (shown below) which really throws a wet blanket on that statement.]


Does the atmosphere (or any greenhouse gas) act a blanket?

At best, the reference to a blanket is a bad metaphor. Blankets act primarily to suppress convection; the atmosphere acts to enable convection. To claim that the atmosphere acts a blanket, is to admit that you don’t know how either one of them operates.


Of course, the rest of this is just a BS strawman argument, most skeptics (and certainly no skeptical scientists) don’t dispute the greenhouse effect, only the magnitude of the effect and confounding factors such as feedbacks and sensitivity. The phrase about smoking and lung cancer is right out of the slimer playbook championed by people like Romm and Gore, who have used such tactics before. The only purpose for it being there is to tar people you disagree with a broad brush.

But wait, there’s more sliminess. How about we link the climate debate to illegal steroid use too?

… Killer heat waves, devastating droughts and wildfires, and unprecedented floods are expected in our warmer world and we are witnessing these events now. Climate is the canvas and weather is what is painted on that canvas. Change the canvas and all weather is affected. The extra heat and moisture that human-caused warming is adding to the climate is like injecting steroids into our weather.

Scott Mandia must think everyone is stupid except him, because time and time again it can be demonstrated that there is no trend in severe weather that links to climate. Even NOAA puts the kibosh on such linkages, such as with the Russian heat wave wrongly blamed on climate change.

But hey, if you think of yourself as “superman of climate” I suppose supersized-ego powers come with the cape. You can read Scott Mandia’s super opinion here.

From the press release:

John Abraham is an associate professor of Thermal Sciences at the
University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, Minn. He teaches and carries
out research in the areas of thermodynamics, heat transfer, fluid
mechanics, and climate monitoring. He is co-founder of the Climate Rapid
Response Team.

Scott Mandia is Professor of Physical Science at Suffolk County
Community College, Long Island, New York. He has been teaching weather
and climate courses for more than 20 years.

This article was posted: Thursday, November 24, 2011 at 4:16 am

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