14 Apr 2010, 12:01pm
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UN’s Climate Bible Gets 21 “F”s on Report Card

by Donna Laframboise, No Consensus, 14 April 2010 [here]

TORONTO — 21 of 44 chapters in the United Nations’ Nobel-winning climate bible earned an F on a report card released today. Forty citizen auditors from 12 countries examined 18,500 sources cited in the report – finding 5,600 to be not peer-reviewed.

Contrary to statements by the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the celebrated 2007 report does not rely solely on research published in reputable scientific journals. It also cites press releases, newspaper and magazine clippings, student theses, newsletters, discussion papers, and literature published by green advocacy groups. Such material is often called “grey literature.”

“We’ve been told this report is the gold standard,” says Canadian blogger Donna Laframboise, who organized the online crowdsourcing effort to examine the references. “We’ve been told it’s 100 percent peer-reviewed science. But thousands of sources cited by this report have been nowhere near a scientific journal.”

Based on the grading system used in US schools, 21 chapters in the IPCC report receive an F (they cite peer-reviewed sources less than 60% of the time), 4 chapters get a D, and 6 get a C. There are also 5 Bs and 8 As. … [more]

14 Apr 2010, 12:00pm
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ClimateGate Whitewash

By S. Fred Singer, American Thinker, April 14, 2010 [here]

There is now a desperate effort afoot by assorted climate alarmists to explain away the revelations of the incriminating e-mails leaked last year from the University of East Anglia (UEA). A concerted whitewash campaign is in full swing to save the IPCC and its questionable conclusion that the warming of the last thirty years is anthropogenic. But ongoing investigations so far have avoided the real issue, namely whether the reported warming is genuine or a manufactured result by scientists in England and the United States who manipulated temperature data.

Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) has repeatedly characterized anthropogenic global warming (AGW) as a “hoax” — and he may soon be vindicated. Certainly, the remedies invoked to “fight” AGW are a cruel hoax — mainly a tax burden on low-income households who will pay more for electricity, food, transportation, and other necessities of life. … [more]

14 Apr 2010, 11:32am
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Younger Dryas Megafauna Extinction Comet Theory Discounted

Clovis Mammoth Hunters: Out With a Whimper or a Bang?

ScienceDaily, Apr. 12, 2010, [here]

A team of researchers from the University of Arizona has revisited evidence pointing to a cataclysmic event thought by many scientists to have wiped out the North American megafauna — such as mammoths, saber tooth cats, giant ground sloths and Dire wolves — along with the Clovis hunter-gatherer culture some 13,000 years ago.

The team obtained their findings following an unusual, multidisciplinary approach and published them in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

“The idea of an extraterrestrial impact driving the Pleistocene extinction event has recently caused a stir in the scientific community,” said C. Vance Haynes, a professor emeritus at UA’s School of Anthropology and the department of geosciences, who is the study’s lead author. “We systematically revisited the evidence for an impact scenario and discovered it just does not hold up.” …

When the last ice age came to an end approximately 13,000 years ago and the glaciers covering a large portion of the North American continent began melting and retreating toward the north, a sudden cooling period known as the “Big Freeze” or, more scientifically, the Younger Dryas, reversed the warming process and caused glaciers to expand again. Even though this cooling period lasted only for 1,300 years, a blink of an eye in geologic timeframes, it witnessed the disappearance of an entire fauna of large mammals.

The big question, according to Haynes, is ‘Why did those animals go extinct in a very short geological timeframe?’”

“When you go out and look at the sediments deposited during that time, you see this black layer we call the Black Mat. It contains the fossilized remains of a massive algae bloom, indicating a short period of water table rise and cool climate that kept the moisture in the soil. Below the Black Mat, you find all kinds of fossils from mammoths, bison, mastodons, Dire wolves and so forth, but when you look right above it — nothing.”

Scientists have suggested several scenarios to account for the rapid Pleistocene extinction event. Some ascribe it to the rapid shift toward a cooler and dryer during the “Big Freeze,” causing widespread droughts.

Haynes disagrees. “We find evidence of big changes in climate throughout the geologic record that were not associated with widespread extinctions.” …

The two attempts to account for the mass extinction event prevailing at this point include humans and celestial bodies. Many deem it possible that humans such as the Clovis culture hunted the Pleistocene mammals to extinction, as proposed by UA Professor Emeritus Paul S. Martin [here].

Alternatively, it is thought that a comet or asteroid slammed into the glaciers covering the Great Lakes area, unleashing firestorms that consumed large portions of vegetation. In addition, the dust and molten rock kicked up high into the atmosphere during the impact could have shrouded the Earth in a nuclear winter-like blanket of airborne dust, blocking sunlight and causing temperatures to plummet. …

“Something happened 13,000 years ago that we do not understand,” said Haynes. “What we can say, though, is that all of the evidence put forth in support of the impact scenario can be sufficiently explained by earthly causes such as climate change, overhunting or a combination of both.”

Does this mean the results obtained by Haynes and his coworkers rule out the possibility of a cosmic event?

“No, it doesn’t,” Haynes said. “It just doesn’t make it very likely.” … [more]

14 Apr 2010, 11:24am
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New DNR study hopes to settle debate surrounding deer predators

by RON SEELY madison.com, April 12, 2010 [here]

The number of gray wolves in Wisconsin has grown to nearly 700, prompting concerns among hunters about predation on the deer herd.

Hunters and wolves in Wisconsin share an uneasy history, and the problem is that they like to do the same thing - kill and eat deer.

The numbers of deer killed by hunters each year is well known; they shot about 196,000 during last fall’s nine-day gun deer season. But despite the speculation one might hear from a barstool at a rural tavern, the full extent of the wolf’s impact on the state’s more than 1 million deer has never moved beyond anecdote.

Now, however, science will be brought to bear on that question: How many whitetail deer in northern and central Wisconsin are killed by wolves, bears and even bobcats and coyotes?

The state Department of Natural Resources, working with researchers from the UW-Madison, has embarked on a multi-year, $1.2 million study that will track hundreds of bucks and fawns to see how they die. … [more]

Note: Does God look down on the boys in the barroom, mainly forsaken but surely not judged? Jacks, kings, and aces their faces in wine. Do, Lord, deliver our kind. — Robert Hunter

Floridians Mind-Boggled By Cold

Weird winter weather creates struggle for some Everglades wildlife, other species thrive

[Note: if it's unusually cold it's weather; if it's hot, that's climate]

By ERIC STAATS, NaplesNews.com, April 10, 2010 [here]

NAPLES — The water tables have turned at Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary this winter.

“To think of where we were, and then now, it’s unbelievable,” the sanctuary’s manager Ed Carlson said. “It boggles our minds.”

Water gauges at the sanctuary’s Lettuce Lake had bottomed out this time last year, but now the lake, at about 3 feet deep, has more water in it than it did at the end of last year’s rainy season.

The rhythm of the rain at the natural wonderland off Immokalee Road in northern Collier County is off a beat or two _ and it’s thrown off Mother Nature’s timing.

All over South Florida, the winter of weird weather has made its mark.

Wading birds: Cold and hungry

Thousands of wading birds have foregone nesting this year throughout the northern Everglades, South Florida Water Management District senior scientist Mark Cook said.

“Perhaps they’re just too hungry to be sitting on their nests,” he said. … [more]

Note: If Floridians get any stupider Gaia may need to drown them as an act of mercy.

13 Apr 2010, 7:57am
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Ancient Americans took cold snap in their stride

e! Science News, April 12, 2010 [here]

Paleoindian groups occupied North America throughout the Younger Dryas interval, which saw a rapid return to glacial conditions approximately 11,000 years ago. Until now, it has been assumed that cooling temperatures and their impact on communities posed significant adaptive challenges to those groups. David Meltzer from the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, USA, and Vance Holliday from the University of Arizona in Tucson, USA, suggest otherwise in their review of climatic and environmental records from this time period in continental North America, published in Springer’s Journal of World Prehistory. From their analysis, they conclude that on the Great Plains and in the Rocky Mountains, conditions were in reality less extreme and therefore may not have measurably added to the challenge routinely faced by Paleoindian groups, who during this interval, successfully dispersed across the diverse habitats of Late Glacial North America.

Meltzer and Holliday question whether the impact of cooling on Pleistocene North Americans was actually that pronounced or widespread and, if it was, whether it was similarly abrupt and severe, and in the same direction, across North America. Their comprehensive review of the climate and environment of North America during that time and its possible impact suggests that the Young Dryas age cooling was not as sudden, extensive, or severe as has previously been suggested and the notion that these conditions may have taken the Paleoindians by surprise is questionable.

The authors conclude: “All things considered, it is likely that across most of North America, south of the retreating ice sheets, Paleoindians were not constantly scrambling to keep up with Younger Dryas age climate changes. After all, adapting to changing climatic and environmental conditions was nothing new to them – it was what they did.”

13 Apr 2010, 7:54am
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Glacier Melt Has Nothing To Do With CO2

Pilgrimage to Montana

By Steven Goddard, Watts Up With That, April 12, 2010 [here]

Now that Arctic ice area is normal, Antarctic ice area is normal, sea level rise is failing to accelerate, temperatures are below all of Hansen’s scenarios, and the IPCC has proven itself to be untrustworthy – where can the CAGW religion go? Simple — Montana!…

The USGS has a good article titled “History of Glaciers in Glacier National Park” [here]. … They suggest that the current glaciers mainly formed during the LIA (Little Ice Age)

These modest glaciers varied in size, tracking climatic changes, but did not grow to their Holocene maximum size until the end of the Little Ice Age (LIA) around A.D. 1850. While they may not have formed in their entirety during the LIA, their maximum perimeters can be documented through mapping of lateral and terminal moraines.

The size of the glaciers in 1850 was an anomaly during the Holocene:

Climate reconstructions representative of the Glacier National Park region extend back multiple centuries and show numerous long-duration drought and wet periods that influenced the mass balance of glaciers (Pederson et al. 2004). Of particular note was an 80-year period (~1770-1840) of cool, wet summers and above-average winter snowfall that led to a rapid growth of glaciers just prior to the end of the LIA. Thus, in the context of the entire Holocene, the size of glaciers at the end of the LIA was an anomaly of sorts. In fact, the large extent of ice coverage removed most of the evidence of earlier glacier positions by overriding terminal and lateral moraines.

The current glaciers started to recede long before the invention of the SUV.

Tree-ring based climate records and historic photographs indicate the initiation of frontal recession and ice mass thinning between A.D. 1860 and 1880.

“Dramatic recession” occurred between 1917 and 1941. This was before the invention of the Hummer and the Soccer Mom. …

Summer temperatures in Montana have not changed for over the past 80 years. Summer is when the snow melts.

Winter precipitation has not changed in Montana since 1930. Winter is when the snow falls.

Conclusion: there is little if any evidence tying the changes in Montana glaciers to CO2. Glaciers were a mile deep there during the last ice age, and have been receding and growing in cycles ever since. They may have been completely gone after the MWP [Medieval Warm Period] and reformed during the LIA. Once again, climate alarmists have chosen a flawed poster child. … [more]

12 Apr 2010, 7:34pm
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IPCC Errors, Distortions and Exaggerations

Global Warming Questions Google Site [here]

IPCC Criticism

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) officially released its Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) in 2007. This document is often regarded as the definitive word on the science behind global warming. However, AR4 gives a distorted, misleading, biased and often erroneous picture. Examples of these distortions are listed here, with attention focused on the Working Group 1 Report “The Physical Science Basis” (WG1), and in particular its Summary for Policymakers (SPM). Curiously, the SPM was released in February 2007, several months before the main report. Confusingly, a “Synthesis Report” was issued in November 2007, with its own SPM. More background to the structure of the IPCC report is given [here].

Errors, distortions and exaggerations in the WGI Report

1. How the IPCC invented a new calculus. The IPCC authors invented a new way of measuring the slope of a graph, in order to create the false impression that global warming is accelerating.

2. The table that didn’t add up. The WG1 SPM was approved by the IPCC even though it contained a table with arithmetic errors. The table was quietly corrected with no admission of the error.

3. False statement about Antarctic sea ice. The IPCC claims that there is no significant trends in Antarctic sea ice. In fact several papers (ignored by the IPCC) show a significant positive trend.

4. Misleading claims about sea level rise. AR4 gives the misleading impression that the rate of sea level rise is increasing, using the trick of switching from one measurement system (tide gauges) to another (satellites).

5. Incorrect calculation of an average. An arithmetic error was made in the calculation of an average of a contribution to radiative forcing. Hence four diagrams in AR4 are wrong and misleading.

6. False claims about Antarctic ice sheet. The IPCC claims that the Antarctic ice sheet is melting and that this is contributing to sea level rise, but recent research papers show that in fact the ice sheet is thickening.

7. Dubious claims about Greenland ice sheet. The IPCC claims that the Greenland ice sheet is melting and causing sea level to rise - ignoring or misrepresenting research that shows the opposite.

8. Erroneous claims about snow cover. The IPCC makes the false claim that snow cover is decreasing in both hemispheres.

9. Exaggerated claims about water vapour. The IPCC summary claims that water vapour has increased. In fact studies show no significant trend or in some cases a decrease.

10. Erroneous claims on increased tropical cyclone activity. The IPCC states that tropical cyclones have increased, but research papers find no evidence of this.

11. The IPCC contradicts itself over the medieval warm period. The IPCC’s own data shows clear evidence that the medieval warm period was as warm as the late 20th century, but the text states the opposite.

12. False statement about paleoclimate studies. The IPCC claims that there is increased confidence in proxy temperature reconstructions, but in fact the opposite is the case.

13. Proxies that aren’t proxies. The IPCC makes use of ‘proxy’ data such as tree rings to justify their claim that current temperatures are unusual - but this data doesn’t match measured temperature.

14. Downplaying the urban heat island effect. The IPCC significantly underestimates the influence of the fact that many temperature measurement sites are located in cities.

15. The UN misquotes its own report. A UN press release coinciding with the release of AR4 blatantly misquoted the report, incorrectly claiming that man-made global warming was unequivocal…

Note: See all 54 (actually there are many more than) errors distortions and exaggerations in the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) [here]

11 Apr 2010, 6:29pm
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Frogs with Extra Heads, Frostbite, Witchcraft Executions, Traffic Jams, etc.

756 Things Blamed on Global Warming

By News on the Net Sunday, April 11, 2010 [here]

What does cannibalism, the extinction of possums, kidney stones, a shortage of truffles and the crash of an Air France jet have in common? They have all been linked in one way or another to global warming.

“Hardly a day goes by that the media don’t blame something on global warming,” an editorial in Investor’s Business Daily observes.

“The British-based science watchdog, Number Watch, wondered just how many and went to the trouble of documenting them. It has kept on its Web site a near-comprehensive set of links to a long list of things attributed by either scientific research or the media to global warming . . .

“In perusing the list one thing will become clear: just how much the fear of global warming has come to taint both science and news reporting on the issue.”

The list compiled by Number Watch includes 756 items linked to global warming.

For example, an increase in the number of cats and kittens being brought to animal shelters in the U.S. has been attributed by a national adoption organization to “an extended cat breeding season thanks to the world’s warming temperatures,” the LiveScience Web site reported.

And the governor of Tokyo said last year that the 2016 Olympics could be the last ever. “Global warming is getting worse,” he said in remarks reported by Reuters. “We have to come up with measures without which Olympic Games could not last long.”

Among the items on the list: acne, alligators in Britain’s Thames River, brain-eating amoebas, childhood insomnia, the risk of an asteroid strike, attacks from killer jellyfish, the death of the Loch Ness monster, killer cornflakes, the extinction of salmon, and a change in the tilt of the Earth’s axis.

Also on the list: frogs with extra heads, frostbite, witchcraft executions, traffic jams, UFO sightings, a walrus stampede, an invasion of king crabs, indigestion, short-nosed dogs, and nuclear war.

11 Apr 2010, 12:18pm
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Siskiyou County Supervisors call again for national monument coordination

By David Smith, Siskiyou Daily News, Apr 09, 2010 [here]

Yreka, Calif. — Filling the room at Tuesday’s Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors meeting were a number of opponents to a possible large change to federal lands in Siskiyou County, with the board suspecting that an expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument into California is being considered by the United States Department of the Interior.

An internal draft recently leaked to the public states, “In 2000, Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument was established to protect the extraordinary biodiversity and vegetation found in southwestern Oregon.

“Unfortunately, because of political constraints, the Monument’s southern boundary was artificially established at the California State line. Therefore the Monument does not include the ecologically important Klamath River tributaries and cuts out sections of important eco-regions from protection.”

Also noted is that the expansion could connect the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument with the proposed Siskiyou Crest National Monument. “Expansions on the Oregon side may also be worth consideration,” the draft states.

Up for consideration by the board was a resolution affirming the county’s policy regarding a prior resolution in which the board stated that “Monument proposals must be brought before the Board of Supervisors at the earliest opportunity to allow the County to have sufficient input on the designation.”

Board Chair Marcia Armstrong expressed concern that the expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou monument could be performed as part of the American Antiquities Act of 1906, which authorizes the President of the United States “to declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States to be national monuments.”

Armstrong stated that restrictions in declared national monuments can include restrictions on mining, timber harvest and road travel.

Comments from the public also covered a wide range of concerns, including the possible effects on hunting and fishing activities, private land within the monument boundaries, wildfire suppression and the county’s economy.

All of the commenters supported the county’s resolution and stated opposition to the expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou monument. …

The resolution states that it is resolved “that the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors [sic] demand that the Secretary of the Interior and any other responsible federal officials associated with the consideration of National Monuments in Siskiyou County immediately coordinate with Siskiyou County regarding these proposals; and … that until such time as coordination occurs and Siskiyou County becomes favorably disposed toward the designations, the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors is opposed to expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument into Siskiyou County and the creation of the Siskyou Crest National Monument.” …

[W]ith the addition of the line: “WHEREAS, a substantial portion of federal lands in Siskiyou County is already set aside as Wilderness, Roadless Areas, Late Successional Reserves and other special designations for exceptional protection of the environment,” [the resolution] passed unanimously. …

The Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument itself was declared by President Bill Clinton on June 9, 2000, utilizing the antiquities act.

The proclamation states that the commercial harvest of timber or other vegetative material is prohibited, “except when part of an authorized science-based ecological restoration project is aimed at meeting protection and old growth enhancement objectives.” Also prohibited by the proclamation is off-road vehicle travel. … [more]

9 Apr 2010, 10:54pm
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Ritter submits roadless-area protection plan to White House

By Bruce Finley, The Denver Post, 04/07/2010 [here]

The haggling over how to protect roadless national-forest land in Colorado intensified Tuesday as Gov. Bill Ritter submitted a newly sweetened plan to the Obama administration for approval.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack issued a statement praising the plan for providing “strong protections” — then announced that the Forest Service will look into “adding significantly to the number of acres receiving a higher level of protection.”

At stake is how much recreation, mining, logging and other activities the government will allow on 4.19 million acres of Colorado’s 14.4 million national-forest acres.

Colorado’s plan would:

• Close a loophole in the current federal rule that allows construction of pipelines, power lines and telecom lines across forests.

• Update a federal forest inventory based on Clinton-era maps.

• Allow logging as deep as 1.5 miles into roadless areas to remove beetle-killed pines.

• Make exceptions for expansion of existing ski resorts and coal mines.

“This is simply a better rule for Colorado,” Ritter said.

more »

8 Apr 2010, 5:54pm
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Cow-fart-gate: Taxitarians Uncowed

Cows absolved of causing global warming with nitrous oxide

Livestock could actually be good for the environment according to a new study that found grazing cows or sheep can cut emissions of a powerful greenhouse gas.

By Louise Gray, UK Telegraph, 08 Apr 2010 [here]

REUTERS: In the past environmentalists, from Lord Stern to Sir Paul McCartney, have urged people to stop eating meat because the methane produced by cattle causes global warming.

However a new study found that cattle grazed on the grasslands of China actually reduce another greenhouse gas, nitrous oxide.

Authors of the paper, published in Nature, say the research does not mean that producing livestock to eat is good for the environment in all countries. However in certain circumstances, it can be better for global warming to let animals graze on grassland. … [more]

8 Apr 2010, 4:29pm
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Idaho’s Gov. Otter Signs Firearms Freedom Act

Tom Remington, Black Bear Blog, April 8, 2010 [here]

Idaho Governor Butch Otter signed HB 589, the Idaho Firearms Freedom Act, this morning (Thursday April 8), making Idaho the seventh state to enact an Firearms Freedom Act bill.

Note: This act creates a challenge at the federal level by making it legal to possess a firearm in Idaho regardless of federal regulations PROVIDED the firearm’s use AND manufacture meet certain requirements, including being manufactured in Idaho, with products produced in Idaho and stamped “Made in Idaho.”

8 Apr 2010, 4:27pm
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Arctic Sea Ice Increasing

Arctic Sea Ice Reports: who to believe?

Watts Up With That, April 8, 2010 [here]

… NSIDC seems to confirms the WUWT 12 Month Ice Forecast. Twelve months ago, WUWT forecast that 3 year old ice would increase during the next year, and explained why. NSIDC confirmed the accuracy of the forecast with their most recent Sea Ice News.

Note that 3+ (>2) year old ice has increased from 10% to about 14% during the past year, shown with the two black horizontal lines near the bottom. That shows an impressive growth of 40% relative to last year.

Ice older than one year has also increased by a substantial amount over 2008 and 2009. The implication being that ice thickness has been increasing for the last two years. Older ice is thicker ice.

So we will leave it up to the readers to do the math. Thickness has increased. Area has increased. What does that tell us about volume? What does that tell us about the “Arctic Death Spiral“?

Don’t be fooled though. “Decreasing ice is climate. Increasing ice is weather.” … [more]

Computer Models Predicting Species’ Range Shift Due To Global Warming Fail Spectacularly

C3 Headlines, April 07, 2010 [here]

Based on a report from CO2 Science, April 07, 2010 [here]

Climate alarmists state that most species will be forced to move substantial distances from their present territories because of global warming. The climate alarmist scientists developed models to predict just how far a species would move due to the increased warmth. Researchers compared the outcome of the models to the actual empirical evidence of birds shifting their territories in the Italian Alps. Surprise! As is most often the case, the computer models were wrong.

In a further study of the utility of the climate envelope concept that was conducted in an alpine valley in the Italian Piedmont, Popy et al. employed data from two bird atlas surveys performed on a 1-km by 1-km grid (the first in 1992-94 and the second in 2003-05) in an attempt to see if there was any evidence for an expected upward shift in the ranges of 75 bird species (68 of which were detected in both surveys) over this period, during which time mean air temperature rose by a full 1.0°C.

The three researchers report that “the number of species whose mean elevation increased (n = 42) was higher than the number whose mean elevation decreased (n = 19), but the overall upward shift [29 m] was not significantly different from zero.” In addition, they state that even the 29-m increase was “smaller than would be expected from ‘climatic envelope’ models,” as the “1.0°C increase in temperature would be equivalent to c. 200 m in elevation, based on an average gradient of -0.5°C per 100 m.” In addition, they indicate that “at the European scale, no overall expansion or contraction of the distributions of the studied species was detected.”

In light of their findings, as well as those of others they cite, Popy et al. conclude that “until a better understanding of the underlying mechanisms is achieved, predictions based only on ‘climate envelope’ models should be either validated or considered cautiously,” which in our view is a pretty generous conclusion. We would suggest that such poorly-performing models not be used at all. … [more]

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