Watts and Hocker, another hoax

Discussion in 'Environment' started by Old Rocks, Jul 3, 2010.

  1. Old Rocks

    Old Rocks Diamond Member

    Oct 31, 2008
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    Portland, Ore.
    But the stupid will continue to quote Anthony.

    Is the long-term trend in CO2 caused by warming of the oceans?

    In other words, Hocker is claiming that his model shows that the long-term upward trend in CO2 is explained by temperature, when his methods actually removed the long-term trend.

    This is where the previously-mentioned alert readers will be nodding their heads and saying "Yes! We knew it!" The error that Hocker makes - taking the derivative of a time series to remove its long-term trend, then correlating a second data set with this derivative, and finally claiming the second data set explains the long-term trend - is exactly the same error that was recently discovered in a prominent "skeptical" paper by McLean 2009. McLean correlated an index of the El Niño/Southern Oscillation with the first derivative of temperature, while Hocker correlates temperature with the first derivative of CO2 concentration. Perhaps if Hocker were an avid reader of Skeptical Science, he would have been familiar with this error in McLean's analysis and would have avoided repeating it!

    What else can be said about this subject? Well, it is true that the solubility of CO2 in seawater is a function of temperature, and all else being equal, as the ocean warms it will give off CO2 to the atmosphere. And in fact this is the mechanism by which a CO2 feedback amplified the temperature swings during the Pleistocene glacial/interglacial cycles. But in today's world, the greatly increased partial pressure of CO2 from fossil fuel emissions causes a flux of CO2 from the atmosphere to the oceans. This is known from decades of oceanographic surveys that show the oceans are a "sink" rather than a source of CO2 in the atmosphere (Takahashi 2009, Sabine 2004).

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