"Our greatest responsibility is to be good ancestors."

-Jonas Salk

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Jaworowski Refutation

Apparently, the Jaworowski thing is still bouncing around the denyosphere. For the record, from sci.environment ca. 2004:
I cannot easily obtain either referenced Jaworowski paper. The first
one ('92) is in the Citation Index (err, sorry 'Web of Science'.)
The second one, from '94, appears not to be.
Not including a self-citation, Jaworowski '92 has been cited only 7
times in the literature according to the citation index, mostly in
opinion pieces.
However, there is a citation in Science 1993 in:
The Ice Record of Greenhouse Gases.
Raynaud, D.; Jouzel, J.; Barnola, J. M.; Chappellaz, J.; Delmas,
R. J.; Lorius, C.
Science Volume 259(5097) 12 February 1993 pp

"The uncertainties concerning the reliability of the record increase
with the age of the ice and the depth of recovery of the core, and it
has been suggested that the long-term CO2 record is an artifact caused
by the structural changes of the ice with depth and by post-coring
processes [8]. "
where reference 8 is Jaworowski '92.
Reynaud et al go on to refute this and related positions quite in the
next two paragraph.
The record itself provides evidence that the changes observed are not
caused by the presence of air hydrates or fractures. For example,
increases in CO2 and CH4 concentrations in the Vostok core are similar
for the last two glacial-interglacial transitions, even though only
the most recent transition is located in the brittle zone. Such
evidence argues that the atmospheric trace-gas signal is not strongly
affected by the presence of the brittle zone (an increasing scatter of
the trace-gas concentrations can be observed in ice samples
contaminated by drilling fluid intrusions; such scattered data must be
interpreted with caution). Also, the last glacial-interglacial
transition has been investigated along the two Antarctic ice cores
from Byrd and Vostok stations. The transition is in the region of
air-hydrate formation at Byrd but not at Vostok, yet the CO2 and CH4
records from the two cores are similar. We are consequently confident
that the large CO2 and CH4 increases, recorded during the glacial to
interglacial transitions and showing similar amplitudes from one core
to another, are not an artifact linked with the air-hydrate occurence
in ice.

More generally, the good agreement obtained for the
glacial-interglacial changes of CO2 [11-14] and CH4 levels [15-17]
recorded in different types of ice (with and without air hydrates or
fractures or cracks, as well as different temperatures, snow
accumulation rates, ice structures, and so on) on the same core
(Vostok) or among different cores support the notion that, overall,
the long-term trace-gas record from ice cores accurately reflects
atmospheric changes. That the records can be reproduced with a new set
of measurements performed several years after the initial measurements
[see [13,18] for instance] is another reason for confidence in the
atmospheric signal of the ice record of trace gases.

Further significant citation of Jaworowski '92 doesn't appear in the peer review literature. Jaworowski's review makes no bones about its position:

Until 1985 most studies of CO2 in gas inclusions in pre-industrial ice
indicated that CO2 concentrations (up to 2450 ppm) were higher than
the current atmospheric level. After 1985, lower pre-industrial CO2
values were reported, and used as evidence for a recent man-made CO2
increase. The errors in these revised values, however, are of a
similar magnitude to the apparent increase in atmospheric CO2 level.
The assumptions used in estimating lower CO2 values in past
atmospheres have been: no liquid phase in polar ice; younger age of
air than of ice due to free gas exchange between deep firn and the
atmosphere; and no change in composition of air inclusions. These
assumptions are shown to be invalid. Liquid saline water exists in
ice at low temperatures, even below -70-degrees-C; airtight ice layers
are ubiquitous in Antarctic firn; and more than 20 physico-chemical
processes operating in situ and in ice cores contribute to the
alteration of the chemical composition of air inclusions. The
permeable ice sheet with its capillary liquid network acts as a sieve
which redistributes elements, isotopes, and micro-particles.
Thirty-six to 100% of air recovered from old ice is contaminated by
recent atmospheric air during field and laboratory operations. The
value of approximately 290 ppm, widely accepted from glacier studies
for the pre-industrial atmospheric CO2 level, apparently results from:
invalid assumptions; processes in ice sheets; artifacts in ice cores;
and arbitrary rejection of high readings. To date, glaciological
studies are not able to provide a reliable reconstruction of either
the CO2 level in pre-industrial and ancient atmospheres or
paleoclimates. Instead these studies have led to a widely accepted
false dogma of man-made climatic warming. This dogma may have
enormous negative impact on our common future.
To me this reads as polemics and not as science, but I suppose one could argue that I am prejudiced. Still I note that this is Jaworowski's only paper on any closely related topic. Mostly he appears to be interested in anthropogenic radiation from nuclear power. The citation index does not list the '94 paper, so I can't even see an abstract. Both appear in rather obscure journals. As far as I can tell, there was no followup to Reynaud's refutation, and Jaworowski's paper has had little impact in the scientific discussion since.


Steve Bloom said...

I'm not unhappy the subject came up since this was worth a re-post anyway, but rather than going to moderation can't you just block individuals?

Michael Tobis said...

Unfortunately Blogger chooses ease of use over features. If I had it to do over I think I'd have started on WordPress.

I only plan to move once. Fairly soon, I think.

Marco said...

Don't expect this to be of any value to get Pete Ridley to understand Jaworowski has no credibility in this area. He's been going around a lot of blogs touting Jaworowski, has been informed time after time that it's been refuted, that Jaworowski is not an expert in the area, that the publications are commentaries in fringe journals, but nothing will change his mind (short of Jaworowski telling everyone "yes, I have no evidence for my claims, and they are likely wrong").

Anonymous said...

Well, I hope you get your own server, looking at what happened with a certain statistics blogger on wordpress.com.

Anonymous said...

I fear you're right. I provided a number of papers to Pete - even paraphrases 10 other papers to explain what he was arguing...
Eventually he said I had nothing to offer and continued on his merry way - still on the say grey literature that backs his held views (he's always reading a new book).
He fails to look at the subject scientifically and continues to haunt various blogs.