Does temperature contain a stochastic trend? Evaluating conflicting statistical results
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Kaufmann, Robert K.
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CitationKaufmann, Robert K., Heikki Kauppi, and James H. Stock. 2009. “Does Temperature Contain a Stochastic Trend? Evaluating Conflicting Statistical Results.” Climatic Change 101 (3-4) (October 22): 395–405. doi:10.1007/s10584-009-9711-2.
AbstractWe evaluate the claim by Gay et al. (Clim Change 94:333–349, 2009) that “surface temperature can be better described as a trend stationary process with a one-time permanent shock” than efforts by Kaufmann et al. (Clim Change 77:249–278, 2006) to model surface temperature as a time series that contains a stochastic trend that is imparted by the time series for radiative forcing. We test this claim by comparing the in-sample forecast generated by the trend stationary model with a one-time permanent shock to the in-sample forecast generated by a cointegration/error correction model that is assumed to be stable over the 1870– 2000 sample period. Results indicate that the in-sample forecast generated by the cointegration/error correction model is more accurate than the in-sample forecast generated by the trend stationary model with a one-time permanent shock. Furthermore, Monte Carlo simulations of the cointegration/error correction model generate time series for temperature that are consistent with the trend-stationary-with-a-break result generated by Gay et al. (Clim Change 94:333–349, 2009), while the time series for radiative forcing cannot be modeled as trend stationary with a one-time shock. Based on these results, we argue that modeling surface temperature as a time series that shares a stochastic trend with radiative forcing offers the possibility of greater insights regarding the potential causes of climate change and efforts to slow its progression.
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