Variability is….what? WHERE?

I’m gobsmacked by excerpts from a paper currently featured on Watts Up With That on climate models mishandling how warming temperatures will (or will not) result in carbon currently sequestered in soil being released.  That the models don’t handle it correctly is no surprise I suppose.  But the paper that makes the suggestion…. has it….uhm….more wronger.

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/06/02/more-climate-model-fail-soil-carbon-not-handled-well/

While the excerpts on WUWT are reasonably clear, I was dumbfounded by this statement:

At lower latitudes, where both average temperature and variability are expected to increase, the release of soil carbon will probably be higher than that predicted by changes in average temperature.

Well golly gee, they’ve managed to invent some new laws of physics.  Not to mention claiming the exact opposite of not just what physics says is most likely to happen, but the opposite of what the IPCC predicts, and the opposite of what the temperature record shows.

The physics requires that the coldest parts of the planet will warm the most, and the warmest parts of the planet (the low latitudes) will warm the least.  The IPCC agrees, that’s why they speak of “polar amplification” on a regular basis.  They even publish the trend over more than a century to show just that:

IPCC predicts the LEAST warming and variability in the low latitudes - as does the physics

If one takes NASA/GISS data and breaks it down by latitude band, the detail jumps out even more:

NASA/GISS by latitude showing the low latitudes experience the LEAST warming and variability

The low latitudes show the least warming and the least variability.  To put that much effort into a study and then quote the physics, the climate predictions, AND the temperature record completely backwards is…. gobsmacking.  More wronger.  Or something.

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2 Responses to Variability is….what? WHERE?

  1. JT says:

    At lower latitudes, where both average temperature and variability are expected to increase

    Note: This sentence does not go on to say ” …. more than at higher latitudes …”, it just says that temperature and variability are expected to increase – which they are, at least by the IPCC. Furthermore the next clause, “the release of soil carbon will probably be higher than that predicted by changes in average temperature”, simply fails to state explicitly what its author takes to be implied by the previous phrase having mentioned both the average and the variability, to wit: “… due to the increase in variability …”. In other words: the contention is that – because both average temperature and variability will increase – CO2 release will be higher than would be predicted based on the increase in average temperature alone, with the higher than expected number being due to the greater variability. Clearly the author is thinking the high temperature peaks will cause enhanced CO2 release over what would be released at the average temperature, and is thinking that the reduced release caused by the low temperature valleys will not entirely counterbalance the enhanced release caused by the peaks.

  2. JT says:

    ps I liked your skeptic/alarmist dialogue at WUWT.

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