Tuesday, May 8, 2012


date: Wed Mar 17 10:16:27 2004
from: Phil Jones <p.jonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk>
subject: Fwd: Re: FW: Climate: Change could come like lightning
to: mannatXYZxyzginia.edu

You've probably seen the attached - not Tom's comments. It makes the skeptics seem
reasonable ! Seems to have been written by the same people who thought invading Iraq
was a good idea. The climate scenario is ludicrous and the political ones even worse.
No-one in Europe would move to Morocco, Algeria and Egypt. The Hague is 6 miles inland
and wasn't affected by the 1953 storm. Holland has the most overdesigned coastal defences
in the world. Typical US vision of the rest of the world - Tarawa and Tuvulu are down
near New Zealand. The're further away from NZ than Alaska is from you ! What is your
country coming to !
Not heard back from AGU yet. They did a good job, even though it was a pain to go
through it all. Had to redo Fig 4 as I'd left a curve in I meant to take out (Tarussov's).
can't believe I labelled Fig 6 (NAO) wrong. We should get the proofs to go through soon,
so need to synchronize our changes/additions. I thought it best to change the caption to
Fig 8 to pers. comms. for the GKSS and CSM (Hans and Caspar).
Can you believe GKSS doesn't stand for anything? Wonder what AGU will make of that !

Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 16:07:19 -0700
From: Tom Wigley <wigleyatXYZxyz.ucar.edu>
Organization: NCAR/CGD
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To: Phil Jones <p.jonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk>
Subject: Re: FW: Climate: Change could come like lightning
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Not heard of Morrill.
Will attach my critique of the Pentagon report -- presume you have the report
(attached anyway). It cost $100,000!!!!
I reviewed the script for this film last year for an organization (NGO) that thought
they might use it as a jump-off for an educational outreach program on climate change.
I said the film was crap. However, I think it was better than the Pentagon report.
Saw M&C on plane coming back from Oz. Very enjoyable.
Can't recall whether I asked if you would be around just prior to Easter. I will get
to Norwich on Thurs April 9, and leave on Sat. Planning to stay at Keith and Sarah's.
Phil Jones wrote:

Have you met Carrie Morrill? Presumably someone at NCAR talked about the work.
Mixes up local and global changes a lot.
Seriously though have you heard anything about the Pentagon report? I had a couple
calls a couple of weeks ago about and didn't take them that seriously. Is there a
I did check at the time and it wasn't April 1.
Also that film is mentioned !! Saw Master and Commander (a good film - worth
and the Day after Tomorrow was featured as coming soon ! Talked about days etc, but
about turning sea water to glaciers - presumably the reverse.
Weird press release !

-----Original Message-----
From: Jack Saporito [[1]mailto:jack@areco.org]
Sent: Monday, March 15, 2004 3:22 AM
To: 1-AviationWatch
Subject: Climate: Change could come like lightning
Climate: Change could come like lightning
By Dan Whipple
United Press International
A weekly series by UPI on the possible human impact on global climate
BOULDER, Colo., March 8 (UPI) -- Those who think global climate change
requires many years to unfold might want to take note of other worldwide
temperature alterations in the past 15,000 years, which occurred, in
geological terms, quick as a flash.
"Climate has changed abruptly in the past," said Carrie Morrill, a
postdoctoral fellow at the National Center for Atmospheric Research who has
just completed a paper on the subject.
For example, Morrill explained, there was a 14 degree Fahrenheit rise at the
end of a period called the Younger Dryas -- a climate period that occurred
nearly 12,000 years ago, just after the last ice age ended. While scientists
are worried about the potential impact of a 2 degree or 3 degree F. global
increase over the next century, the 14 degree rise occurred "in a period of
decades," she said. "Future climate change probably won't be gradual."
Concerns about a possible lightning-like climate shift are beginning to
emerge from a number of quarters, including some surprising sources. For
example, a new Pentagon report speaks of temperature rises overwhelming the
world's infrastructure over the next 20 years, causing flooding, energy
shortages, drought, famine and rioting. Nations might mass troops on their
borders, threaten neighbors, and even wage nuclear war as they attempted to
deal with the severe upheavals in their environments and economies, the
report states.
The report, "An Abrupt Climate Change Scenario And Its Implications For
United States National Security," characterizes these possibilities as
remote but "plausible."
The idea of such a rapid shift in climate -- from moderate to glacial or the
reverse in only a decade or two -- seems counterintuitive. But there is
little doubt it has happened in the past.
Two events have been particularly well studied. They occurred at the
beginning and end of the Younger Dryas. About 11,600 years ago, there was a
rapid drop in temperature, followed about 1,000 years later by an equally
rapid increase.
Then about 8,200 years ago, there was a another rapid change -- another
temperature decline. This occurrence, called the 8ka event, has been
especially well documented. Average temperatures, as computed from data
derived from Greenland ice cores, fell nearly 11 degrees F. in a few
Moreover, this dramatic temperature change was not restricted to the Arctic,
or even to the northern hemisphere. Paleoclimate records for Venezuela show
a virtually identical pattern for both time and temperature, as do global
proxy records. All indications are that the the 8ka event was global, steep
and rapid.
Morrill examined 105 different proxy records that can be used to track
climate conditions covering about the last 15,000 years. These records
include data collected from ice cores, marine sediments, lake sediments and
fossils such as ostracods that demonstrate the impact of climate over time.
Because of the wide range of records, she was able to narrow the time focus
of the data to 150 year increments or better.
Her analysis shows two new periods of abrupt climate change -- one occurring
5,500 years to 5,800 years ago, and the other from 4,000 years to 4,800
years ago. During both periods, the climate in the tropics became drier; in
the Mediterranean, colder and drier; in the high latitudes, colder, and in
the mid-latitudes, colder and wetter.
"Technically, an abrupt climate change occurs when the climate system is
forced to cross some threshold, triggering a transition to a new state at a
rate determined by the climate system itself and faster than the cause,"
according to a definition developed by the National Research Council.
Abrupt change needs a trigger, an amplifier -- some mechanism to have the
trigger affect a large area -- and a source of persistence. It turns out
lots of triggers have been identified, for example, an accumulation of
carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, as is occurring now.
A paper in Science in March 2003 by Penn State glaciologist Richard Alley
and others, noted: "... the drying of the Sahara during the latter part of
the Holocene, and the ice age ... oscillations, are linked in time and
mechanistically to orbital forcing. The Sahara dried as the African monsoon
weakened in response to reductions in summertime incoming solar radiation
... Triggers may be fast (e.g., outburst floods from glacier-dammed lakes),
slow (continental drift, orbital forcing) or somewhere between
(human-produced greenhouse gases) and may even be chaotic; multiple triggers
also may contribute."
Although potential triggers for abrupt climate change have been fairly well
identified, mechanisms that can spread the impacts globally are less
"Global circulation models, forced by hypothesized causes of abrupt climate
changes, often simulate some regional changes rather well, underestimate
others, and fail to generate sufficiently widespread anomaly patterns,"
according to the paper by Alley et al.
In her research, Morrill looked at the possibility the El Ni�o-Southern
Oscillation phenomenon could serve as a globalizer for temperature changes
in the tropics. El Ni�os, which are triggered by changes in tropical Pacific
Ocean sea surface temperatures, are known to affect climate across North and
South America, and perhaps even parts of Europe.
The results seem inconclusive, however, at least as they relate to the rapid
climate changes Morrill identified during the Holocene. She found the El
Ni�o was stronger at the last glacial maximum -- about 21,000 years ago --
weaker during the mid-Holocene, and stronger now.
Whatever the scientific uncertainties, rapid climate change is about to hit
popular culture. The film "The Day After Tomorrow" is scheduled to be
released in May. It depicts rapid climate change -- from the trailers,
apparently in the matter of days, not decades -- that causes tidal waves to
sweep over Manhattan and turns all that sea water into glaciers.
"Most ecological and economic systems have the ability to adapt to a
changing environment," the Science paper said. "Slower changes allow
response with less disruption in both ecosystems and economies. Abrupt
changes are particularly harmful where the individual entities have long
lifetimes or are relatively immobile; damages also increase with the
abruptness and unpredictability of the climate change and are likely to be
larger if the system is unmanaged."
Long-lived and relatively immobile unmanaged ecosystems such as mature
forests and coral reefs thus are likely to be especially sensitive to
climate change, the paper continued. "Specific attention to vulnerable
sectors such as these is warranted," its authors wrote. ===========
** NOTICE: In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is
distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in
receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. **

Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) 1603 592090
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) 1603 507784
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email p.jonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk

Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) 1603 592090
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) 1603 507784
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email p.jonesatXYZxyz.ac.uk

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