The Science of why the Theory of Global Warming is Incorrect!

Next week I plan on making a big push to get this information out to many, many people.  This is one of the key topics that is covered in my book.  It is not the only critical topic, but this one by itself is enough to demonstrate in a scientific way that warming as described by The Theory of Global Warming is impossible.  My goal is to present this and related information to a wide audience next week.  Wish me luck.

The Theory of Global Warming can be stated in the simplest form as:

An increase in the Earth’s temperature which is caused by an increase in the atmospheric concentration of CO2.

The science behind the theory is that CO2 molecules in the atmosphere absorb and transmit IR (infra-red) energy in all directions.  Specifically they prevent IR energy in the 14-16 micon wavelength (which widens as the concentration increases) from leaving the Earth and then those same molecules then transmit that energy in all directions, most importantly downward where that energy acts like a heating lamp which will cause the oceans and the land to warm up.

There is even a formula by which they show how much power is in the CO2 warming lamp.

The Inconvenient Skeptic

CO2 Forcing Equation

Where C0 is usually taken to be 300 ppm of CO2 in the atmosphere.  If I used this equation to determine the power of the heat lamp that is taking place today, I get 1.4 W/m2 of IR energy that is being transmitted by the “extra” CO2 in the atmosphere today.  That 1.4 W/m2 is important to keep that number in mind.  If I then translate that forcing into warming (see here for that topic), I find that The Theory of Global Warming predicts a 1.1 °C increase in temperature for a CO2 level of 390 ppm.

Now to show that such warming is absolutely impossible by using proven science.

As any object warms up, it transmits more energy which is described by the Stefan-Boltmann Law which is described as:

The Inconvenient Skeptic

Amount of energy radiated by an object.

One important note here is that the energy radiated increases to the 4th power and it is absolute temperature that matters here and not relative temperature change or anomaly.  The average temperature of the Earth is ~14 °C which is an absolute temperature of 287.15K.  The energy transmission of a blackbody at 287.15 K is 385.5 W/m2.  Clearly the Earth does not lose energy at that rate since it receives less than that and this is where the greenhouse effect comes into play.  The end of it all is that the Earth’s atmosphere radiates energy to space at a rate of ~198 W/m2 and also some additional energy from the surface.  I spend a lot more time on the details of this summary in the book, but in effect the Earth loses most of it’s energy to space from an altitude of ~9.5 km which has a temperature of 243K (or -30 °C).

So according to the science, a warmer Earth (and it’s atmosphere) should lose energy to space at a greater rate when the Earth warms up.  This would be a problem to prove if the Earth was at a constant temperature.  Fortunately the Earth’s temperature varies a great deal over the course of a year so it is easy to show that the Earth does in fact lose more energy when it warms up.  This can be shown by comparing the OLR (outgoing longwave radiation) to the actual global temperature.

The Inconvenient Skeptic

(Blue) Global Temperature in °C, (Red) Measured outgoing long-wave radiation. Infra-red energy.

This shows there is an immediate and direct dependence on the amount of energy the Earth is losing to space and the absolute temperature of the Earth itself.  It is also worth pointing out that while the last decade has in fact been warmer, it has also lost more energy than it did before by a large margin.

If I plot the OLR as a function of temperature, the dependence of OLR becomes clear.  In addition I have added the theoretical increase in energy transmission as a function of the absolute temperature.

The Inconvenient Skeptic

(Dots) Measured OLR Data, (Blue Line) Linear regression of the Measured OLR, (Pink) Theoretical change in OLR using the Stefan-Boltmann Law

This shows the direct dependence between OLR and temperature on a monthly basis that has a reasonably good R2 value of 0.81.  Considering the amount of local variation that exists over the entire Earth, this is a very good result.

It can also be used to compare entire years against each other.  I will pick 1984 and 2009 to show that the same result applies over the course of a year.  1984 is a good year for that since it had a temperature anomaly very close to 0.0 °C for most measurements.  As a result that would also be a year that should have an almost zero anomaly for the amount of energy that the Earth lost to space.

The Inconvenient Skeptic

OLR and Global Temperature for 1984 and 2009.

A 0.5 °C temperature difference between these two years resulted in an additional 2.5 W/m2 increase in the measured amount of energy lost to space.  That increase in energy loss is not theoretical, it is a measured difference.  It is also what is predicted by the Stefan-Boltmann Law.

If the Earth were to warm by 1.1 °C, the amount of energy lost would be almost 4 W/m2 greater than what it lost in 1984.  If the Earth were to warm by 3.0 °C which is what is predicted by a doubling of CO2, then the amount of energy lost would be > 10 W/m2 the energy loss that existed in 1984.

The science of this is very clear.  The rate at which the Earth loses energy will increase at more than twice the rate that the theoretical CO2 forcing is capable of causing warming to take place.  The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere cannot stop the Earth from losing more energy if it warms up.  The reasons behind this are the wavelengths of energy that are transmitted by the Earth, but it can simply be shown by looking at the energy loss increase that has taken place over the past 25 years.

Time to put 2.5 W/m2 into perspective.  That is comparable to the energy flux of the Gulf Stream.  That is ~500 times more than the total energy consumption of the United States in a year.  That is 80 times more energy than the entire human race uses in a year.  It is also 30 times more energy than what the Earth’s interior brings to the surface each year.  That is a huge amount of energy.  An Earth that was 3.0 °C warmer would lose more than 4x more energy than that.

There is far more information on this topic in my book and  this is only one of the major flaws in the Theory of Global Warming, but it is a big one.  It is the science that has caused me to be a global warming skeptic.  It is foolish to believe that a radiative forcing can cause warming when the rate of heat loss will increase at such a rate.  The consequences of this science is profound and will alter our understanding of the Earth’s climate.

Posted in Cause and Effect and Energy Balance and Radiative Heat Transfer and Science Overviews and Skeptic by inconvenientskeptic on May 14th, 2012 at 1:22 pm.


This post has 14 comments

  1. I don’t understand. If the science here is ‘very clear’, and it is foolish to believe otherwise, then are you saying that all climate scientists out there are foolish (except you) for even believing that it could happen?

  2. In your About section you state:
    “More than anything The Inconvenient Skeptic delivers sufficient knowledge so that the readers can make their own decision. It gives my own personal conclusions, but challenges the readers to come to their own conclusions and then gives them the tools to do so.”

    This is all well and good, except that by saying things like “The science is very clear” and it would be “foolish” to believe otherwise sounds like you are not following your own goals.

    I’m not saying that you are right or wrong, but rather that I find a disconnect between your stated mission and your actual words which come across as belittling and pompous to all other scientists out there that don’t believe the same thing as you.

  3. inconvenientskeptic May 15th 2012

    Global warming is not believed by most people. If the science supported it, then I would be trying to convince people that it was correct.

    I support a discussion of the science here. Very few supporters of global warming discuss the science, they discuss the number of people that support the theory of global warming.

  4. “The rate at which the Earth loses energy will increase at more than twice the rate that the theoretical CO2 forcing is capable of causing warming to take place. The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere cannot stop the Earth from losing more energy if it warms up. ”

    Very good point here!

    I am going to post at PSI forum and my forum to help spread it.

    Thank you.

  5. – Matt

    John’s opinion on *the debate* is absolutely correct. 95% of the people talking about AGW theory disregard the the empirical data and fundamentals of the scientific method. Computer models (i.e. assumptions) rule the day.

    His opinion and presentation off the science and evidence should be the topic of debate, but the AGW establishment must pretend as-if the debate doesn’t exist b/c they have no sound evidence.

  6. Eric Anderson May 15th 2012


    This is interesting and thanks for sharing. It seems to me, however, that it does not address the central issue, namely, whether the troposphere will end up warming. For example, in your last figure you show that 2009 was indeed warmer than 1984. Yes, the outgoing radiation increased substantially, but apparently not enough to keep the temperature at the 1984 level. Therefore, wasn’t the increase in energy coming into the system equal to (i) the amount of increased outgoing radiation, *plus* (ii) whatever amount of energy was needed to increase global temperature by 0.5 degrees?

    Stated another way, wouldn’t a GW advocate argue that it ultimately doesn’t matter how much energy is radiated from the Earth, because if not all of the increased energy is radiated, then the temperature will still increase (which is what happened), and the parade of horrors will still follow?

    As a result, regardless of outgoing radiation, the question still comes back to how much warming has occurred, why it has occurred, and whether it is bad.

  7. inconvenientskeptic May 16th 2012


    This actually answers why the warming has taken place.

    The Earth is a non-equilibrium, dynamic system. That means it never reaches the equilibrium temperature. There are several reasons for this, but the annual seasons play a big role. Since the Earth never reaches the equilibrium temperature, it is either always losing more energy than it gains (which causes cooling) or it is gaining more energy than it is losing (which causes warming).

    All of the temperature reconstructions show that there are hundred year periods of warming or cooling. This explains why this happens on the century time scale. Two hundred years ago when the Earth was cooler, it was gaining more energy than it was losing.

    While people want to say that the ocean oscillations cause this, it is only the oceans that lag the most in this phenomenon. The oceans are always in an energy imbalance and always will be. The oceans act as the slack in the system. Once the atmosphere is dissipating energy faster than the oceans can put energy into the atmosphere, the next cooling phase will begin. That will last until the next phase begins.

  8. Richard111 May 16th 2012

    Nice. Thank you. Your last comment is a good summary.

  9. John, this comment (and the debate on the thread that precedes it) might be of interest to you:

  10. “The Earth is a non-equilibrium, dynamic system.”

    I would propose that climate alarmists view the earth as an aquarium in a 5th grade science lab. One problem is they act as if everything is constant (except human CO2) when in reality the earth is an open system in an environment that’s constantly changing.

    You point this out in your book with your discussions of Milankovitch cycles, and there are many other factors like changing cosmic ray flux, different amounts of dust in the solar system as it travels through the galaxy, changing solar activity and so on. Rather than one theory being right or wrong I think all of these factors contribute to climate and in sum total natural variability wipes out any impact of human emissions. I recently read “The Chilling Stars” about the Svensmark theory of clouds and cosmic rays and it presents a very strong case that the cosmic ray theory contributes to climate as well, probably leading to many of the short term variations seen within the Milankovitch cycles.

    Anyway excellent post. Must reading for anyone interested in climate.

  11. Hello John,

    I posted your blog entry here:

    There you might consider visiting where they are asking reasonable questions about few statements you have made.

    Maybe you might consider answering them as there are a number very interested people there on the topic?

    Take care,

    Thomas P.

  12. Richard May 22nd 2012

    I think that one of the questions to ask of those who believe that CO2 is the major component driving global temperature changes is why did the models say that the current temperatures are less likely to be the result of CO2!

    To understand that question you need to consider that ‘Scenario C’ is (statisically) closer to the current figures than other, more CO2 related, scenarios as previously proposed.

    Effectively ‘Scenario C’ is the perfect ‘null hypothesis’ in that it is a model projection based on CO2 having no or little effect on the climate (it actually says that we stopped producing more CO2 in 2000 which we KNOW did not happen).

  13. Richard B. Woods May 28th 2012

    What are your sources for the “OLR and Global Temperature”, “OLR and Temperature”, and “1984 vs. 2009” data?

  14. inconvenientskeptic May 28th 2012

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