Almost Ready…

The most basic concept behind the theory of global warming is that increasing the CO2 in the atmosphere will change the Earth’s climate by making it warmer. So far I have not really detailed the reasons why I am a skeptic. I have pointed out flaws that I see in certain aspects of the debate, but the central tenant of global warming I have not really written much on.

That is about to change. One of the biggest problems I have seen in my research is that people accept what they read without analyzing the data on their own. They are trusting the conclusions of others without trying to understand the data on their own. This leads to a limited understanding of the situation.

There is the possibility that increasing CO2 will cause warming, but my scientific conclusion is that it is very limited. There are many parts to that conclusion and the one on Sunday is only the first. In addition there are worse things than global warming. Some proposed “solutions” to global warming could be more damaging in the long run than the stated dangers. For this reason I am very strongly opposed to Geoengineering.

The Earth is always changing. It always has and it will continue to do so for far longer than we can truly comprehend. Our modern science is only now seeing how the Earth changes. We had better get used to how it changes because it isn’t going to stop changing because we want it to.

The article on Sunday will be a good overview about CO2 forcing and climate sensitivity. It should be a good overview for anyone interested in the topic of global warming. It does contain math, but nothing too complicated.

It does however point out some serious internal contradictions with the widely accepted climate sensitivity and the CO2 forcing equations. I hope you enjoy it.

Posted in Skeptic by inconvenientskeptic on October 23rd, 2010 at 10:08 am.


This post has 6 comments

  1. Phil Scadden Oct 23rd 2010

    This is going to be interesting. I am really looking forward to some insight into why you attach so much importance to 0.25 W/m2 per hundred year in one part of the world while thinking 3.7W/m2 per hundred year GLOBALLY is insignificant.

    ” One of the biggest problems I have seen in my research is that people accept what they read without analyzing the data on their own. They are trusting the conclusions of others without trying to understand the data on their own.” Really? You think this of scientists? I think biggest problem is skeptics wading into what they dont understand without bothering to acquire the domain knowledge to interpret data.

  2. Phil Scadden Oct 23rd 2010

    PS. Thanks for improving graph. Without that display of integrity, I wouldnt come back.

  3. Richard111 Oct 27th 2010

    As a non-scientist here is why I am now a convinced sceptic. I have recently read about the Maxwell Boltzmann energy distribution curves for gases at changing temperatures. It seems that CO2 can absorb all it meets (within its limited spectra) but cannot emit much because local air temperatures are far, far too low for the CO2 molecule to reach the required kinetic energy level to emit a photon. Thus CO2 does indeed warm the lower atmosphere for a hundred metres or so and that shields the CO2 above from any further surface radiation (at the CO2 spectra remember). There will be sparse emission from CO2 in the middle atmosphere (as shown by the MB curves) but this will be absorbed by nearby CO2 molecules thus neither cooling nor warming the middle atmosphere.
    CO2 provides a fixed and limited amount of warming to the lower atmosphere and virtually zero radiative feedback. Increasing levels of CO2 will not change these effects.

  4. Phil Scadden Oct 27th 2010

    So I wonder where you read that Richard? Considered the possibility that when your conclusion contradicts measurement that maybe you have got the interpretation wrong? I’d say keep reading but do it directly from a text book.

  5. inconvenientskeptic Oct 27th 2010

    Radiative heat transfer is one of those things that there is a lot of confusion about.

    I am putting together something on this that will hopefully help the confusion. Many of the terms that both sides use aren’t exactly correct.

    Two molecules of CO2 at the same temperature can emit photons, but generally they collide. If they are at the same temperature, there is no net energy transferred between the two molecules and all they do is keep the other molecules at the same temperature. It is basically a statistical probability based on conditions for how gases behave.

    It doesn’t really matter which method they use as either one ensures that a local temperature gradient exists. Temperature gradients in gases primarily exist when something impedes the gases or distances are larger.

    There is only net energy transfer if they are at different temperatures. That is why a room will stay at the same temperature unless there is something that acts to warm or cool it (hot or cold wall). Even though the molecules are transferring energy, there is no net change in energy (or temperature).

    I can see how what you are saying applies to the atmosphere, but in that case there is a steady state behavior not a static behavior.

    Hopefully that helps. I will put the basic information out first so people grasp that, then add onto that.

  6. Richard111 Oct 31st 2010

    Sorry for delay in reply. Been much distracted by later discussions here.

    Phil, I make no claim to being an authority on anything. My first contact with the MB curves was from a post by Tom Vonk:

    I typed in “Maxwell Boltzmann distribution” into my search engine and had a lot of hits. I mostly picked the “.edu” sites and the general tone seems to support my intuitive reasoning. As I understand the MB curves have been in general use for 140 years in the the fields of both physics and chemistry and have not be refuted. But I would be happy to read a text book if you can give me a title and I can find a source on the internet.

    John. I look forward to your forthcoming detailed post. Meanwhile the MB curves seem to make it quite clear that a CO2 molecule can aquire sufficient kinetic energy to emit a photon at ANY temperature. Just that as temperatures reduce so the number of CO2 molecules aquiring the ability to emit also reduces. The TOTAL number of CO2 molecules does not change, the availability of molecules to absorb increases. As I see it emission is not dependant on just CO2 molecules colliding together.

    Temperature gradients in the atmosphere, especially with regard to the DRY ADIABITIC LAPSE RATE, is another area I can lose myself. If, as I claim, CO2 has no effect on the atmosphere from say 0C downwards then no problem. If CO2 behaves as claimed then surely the lapse rate will show this, especially in presence of water vapour. I have lived in tropical coastal areas and noticed quite large changes in local humidity but no particular change in local temperature. I have also noted how rapidly local surface cooling procedes under a clear night sky and how that cooling slows and even stops as the sky becomes overcast. Radiative feedback from liquid water in the atmosphere far exceeds anything CO2 can do.

    There is also the question of evaporation of water by WIND. It would seem this can exceed temperature induced evaporation by several orders of magnitude and this effect is not, it seems, included in GCMs.

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