Another View on Climate

My Own View of Global Warming

Archive for the ‘CO2’ Category

Is there a Greenhouse Effect?

Posted by greg2213 on May 13, 2013

Atmospheric physicists disagree.

Both sides claim the other doesn’t know their thermodynamics. (Is that why I heard it called ThermoGodDammics in college?)

Nice article on how greenhouses (real ones) really work.

On Facebook, for more “discussion:”

I don’t have the physics or the math to really dig into it and I’m just going to sit back and read the stuff as it comes to my attention. However, I do suspect that a lot of the “discussion” is due to poor choice of terminology and a smearing of definitions.

For example: Can a cooler object warm a warmer object? You’ll be warmer inside your Igloo than you will be outside of it and you’ll be warmer in a nice coat or blanket than without. Yet all are cooler than you and they still “warm” you. But does the atmosphere and IR work the same way?

I think everyone agrees the the atmosphere is warmer with an atmosphere than without, right? And with much less day/night variation than it would have with no atmosphere (eg: the moon.)

And from there it gets more interesting… 🙂

So, I’m going to link to the “Yes!” and “No!” posts as I find them. This post will be updated periodically. Perhaps a conclusion or common ground will be reached, someday. Till then, I’m reaching for the popcorn.

(update note: I’m on the “yes” side, though “greenhouse” is a lousy term.)

(Another update note: Can a “greenhouse gas,” in theory, back-radiate to warm the surface? Yes. (See below.) Does it? I say yes. Is CO2 a significant player in this? No, water vapor vastly overwhelms CO2.)

Yes, There IS a GH Effect.

Dr. Roy Spencer has challenged the Slayers (of the GH effect theory, to either “put up or shut up.”

Eschenbach on the The R. W. Wood Experiment

No, There is NOT a GH Effect

Principia Scientific responds to Dr. Spencer’s challenge.

Climate of Sophistry responds to Eschenbach



Radical New Hypothesis on the Effect of Greenhouse Gases: Michael Hammer, an engineer who specializes in spectroscopy, is also sceptical of the GCM but his criticism is more fundamental.  In the following paper, using the basic laws of spectroscopy, he shows that a significant portion of energy loss from the Earth’s surface is by direction radiation to space at wavelengths not absorbed by carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.
Convection, Venus, Thought Experiments and Tall Rooms Full of Gas – A Discussion
 Luboš Motl: SciAm, Gavin Schmidt despise climate facts American Thinker: The Hidden Flaw in Greenhouse Theory
On WUWT: Simple experiment shows that a hotter object can, in fact, be warmed by a cooler one. Light bulb experiment. two

I think this sums it up very nicely. 

OldWeirdHarold says: (wuwt comment, from the light bulb experiment) May 28, 2013 at 9:51 am

Years ago, in a statistical mechanics lesson in P-chem, the prof, after wading through an insufferable derivation, drew an interesting conclusion. In a hurricane, over 40% of the molecules are moving against the direction of the wind. If they were all moving the the same direction, they’d be moving at the speed of sound.

The conceptual error that the Skydragons are making is failing to distinguish between individual dynamics and population dynamics. Just as a large percentage of the molecules in a hurricane move against the wind, a large percentage of the photons can and do move counter to the net heat flow, which implies moving counter to the thermal gradient.

The Second Law is an emergent phenomenon that applies to populations. It doesn’t apply to individual particles.

And this: 

(link) GE R&D center developed an incandescent bulb back in the late 1980′s (and GE lighting commercialized it in the 1990′s) that placed a spherical clear glass shell around the filament. The shell was coated with a multilayer (anywhere from 15 – 30 separate layers) optical filter that reflects mid infrared back onto the filament, while allowing visible light to pass through. The result is that a lower filament current can achieve the same filament temperature, thanks to the mid infrared energy being reflected back to the filament. This results in a 15% – 20% increase in lumens/Watt.

GE’s research into IR reflecting films

And I think this one ends the discussion about “back-radiation.”

It is well known that the efficiency of incandescent lamps could be greatly increased if the radiated energy in the near IR region could be returned to the tungsten filament and REABSORBED.

Posted in AGW Hypothesis, CO2, Greenhouse Effect | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Chaos, Attractors, CO2, Milankovic Cycles, and Ice Ages

Posted by greg2213 on January 10, 2012

WuWT has a great article on Chaos and Strange Attractors which is very readable. It explains very nicely why Catastrophic Warming isn’t going to happen and why an Ice Age very likely will.


This strongly suggests that while the the linear response assumption made in a) may be valid (per attractor) — or may not, but it will be a huge problem to prove it — the effect isless than the natural excursion, not greater than the natural excursion, and the negative feedback factors that make the multistable attractors (locally) attractive also act asnegative feedback on the CO_2 induced shift!

The latter is the fluctuation-dissipation theorem, as I already noted in one thread or another (two tired of writing to go see if it was this one). In an open system in a locally stable phase, the oscillations (fluctuations) couple to the dissipation so that more fluctuation makes more dissipation — negative feedback. If this is not true, the locally stable phase is not stable.

This is a strong argument against catastrophe! The point is that given that CO_2 is making only small, slow, local shifts of the attractors compared to the large shifts of the system between the attractors, if there was a point where the system was likely to fall over to a much warmer stable point — the “catastrophe” threatened by the warmists — italmost certainly would have already done it, as the phase oscillations over the last ten thousand years have on numerous occasions made it as warm as it is right now.

The fact that this has not happened is actually enormously strong evidence against both positive feedback and catastrophe. Yes, anthropogenic CO_2 may have shifted all the attractor temperatures a bit higher, it may have made small rearrangements of the attractors, but there is no evidence that suggests that it is probablygoing to suddenly create at new attractor far outside of the normal range of variation already visible in the climate record. Is it impossible? Of course not. But it is not probable.

The whole thing: No new strange attractors: strong evidence against both positive feedback and catastrophe

Luboš Motl, of The Reference Frame, writes about Milankovitc Cycles and how some recent work has greatly tightened up their agreement with observed data. He also adds some remarks on CO2 and temperatures.

This paper by a former student of Richard Lindzen finally managed to fix Milutin Milankovič’s theory which hadn’t worked and the outcome was a theory that does work. The graph below contains both theoretical predictions as well as the observed data about the Northern Hemisphere temperature and you may see that the match is beautiful:

As the TRF article mentioned above shows, previous attempts to make the theory work displayed the right frequencies but the graphs never really agreed. The probability that the agreement above is coincidental is pretty much zero. Lots of high-frequency wiggles agree. In the future, one may optimize the Milankovič theory but these will be incremental improvements; the qualitative fact that the astronomical cycles dictate “most” of the dynamics in the glaciation cycles has been established by the graphs above.


Dynamics of CO2 concentration after fossil fuels

However, what’s even more absurd is the role that is being attributed to CO2. CO2 will only be modified due to the human activity for a few centuries which is much shorter than the time needed for the ice age cycles to collect several Celsius degrees – that requires thousands or tens of thousands of years….

Here’s the rest: Will CO2 save us from next ice age?

I do have a quibble, though. As I understand it, most plants (even grasses) have severe difficulty when CO2 levels drop below 200ppm. If it were to drop to 180ppm as LM suggests, then I suggest that we might see some major plant extinctions, beyond that caused directly by the lower temps of an ice age.

So either plants can survive at lower CO2 and the CO2 biology is not understood or, much more likely, CO2 levels were actually higher during the ice ages than we think.

Here’s a good book on understanding how Chaos works. It’s just the thing for those of us without advanced Math/Physics degrees:

On Chaos: Making a New Science

Posted in CO2 | Leave a Comment »

CO2 Concentration and Plant Growth

Posted by greg2213 on November 21, 2011

There was a comment on this WUWT post which I found to be very interesting.

Plants require a certain amount of CO2 to survive. People claim that ice cores taken from Antarctica and Greenland show that CO2 levels during the last ice age dropped to 180ppm. It’s then claimed that a 180 to 280 climb drove us out of the ice age.

The problem is that plants don’t do well at 180. Most just die. Grasses can scrape by, but it’s rough on them. So a period of 100k years of starvation should have had a major hit on grasses and destroyed other plants. Apart from being buried under a whole lot of ice.

Since that didn’t happen it seem reasonable to assume that the CO2 measurements from the ice cores are not accurate.

This is the comment:

Gail Combs says:

…..In past times, during the transition between an ice age and a warm period, atmospheric CO2 concentrations changed by some 100 parts per million (ppm) – from an ice age value of 180 ppm to about 280 ppm during warm periods….

If this was true there would be no trees and certainly nothing like mammoths during the last ice age. At 180 ppm Class 4 plants (grasses) could possibly survive but would not have the “energy” to produce seed. At 200 pm CO2 trees starve (That link of course has since been purged from the internet – SURPRISE – not)

…According to Barnola et al (1987) the level of CO2 in the global atmosphere during many tens of thousands of years spanning 30,000 to 110,000 BP were below 200ppm. If this were true then the growth of C3 plants should be limited at the global scale because their net Photosynthesis is depressed as CO2 concentration in air decreases to less than about 250ubar (less than about 250ppmv)(McKay et al 1991) This would lead to the extinction of C3plant species . This has however not been recorded by paleobotanists (Manum 1991).”

“…Plant photosynthetic activity can reduce the CO2 within the plant canopy to between 200 and 250 ppm… I observed a 50 ppm drop in within a tomato plant canopy just a few minutes after direct sunlight at dawn entered a green house (Harper et al 1979)” Source

Another study on wheat (a grass) in open fields showed the CO2 level 2 meters above the crops was reduced to a near constant 300 ppm during the day but fluctuated during the night. Again indicating a lower threshold of 250 ppm ~ 300 ppm and certainly not indicative of below 180 ppm.

WHEAT: The CO2 concentration at 2 m above the crop was found to be fairly constant during the daylight hours on single days or from day-to-day throughout the growing season ranging from about 310 to 320 p.p.m. Nocturnal values were more variable and were between 10 and 200 p.p.m. higher than the daytime values.

From the people who know and depend on the truth – FARMERS

Hydroponic Shop

…Plants use all of the CO2 around their leaves within a few minutes leaving the air around them CO2 deficient, so air circulation is important. As CO2 is a critical component of growth, plants in environments with inadequate CO2 levels of below 200 ppm will generally cease to grow or produce…

….With the advent of home greenhouses and indoor growing under artificial lights and the developments in hydroponics in recent years, the need for CO2 generation has drastically increased. Plants growing in a sealed greenhouse or indoor grow room will often deplete the available CO2 and stop growing. The following graph will show what depletion and enrichment does to plant growth:

GO TO SITE for CO2 vs Plant Growth GRAPH

Below 200 PPM, plants do not have enough CO2 to carry on the photosynthesis process and essentially stop growing. Because 300 PPM is the atmospheric CO content, this amount is chosen as the 100% growth point. You can see from the chart that increased CO can double or more the growth rate on most normal plants. Above 2,000 PPM, CO2 starts to become toxic to plants and above 4,000 PPM it becomes toxic to people…..

Keith in another WUWT discussion brought up another good point the effect of partial pressure of CO2 at higher elevations on plants.

Speaking of carbon dioxide as plant food there is something else often missing in discussions of CO2 concentration. That is CO2 and its relation to altitude. Humans have trouble breathing near the top of Mount Everest even though the “concentration” of oxygen in parts per million is the same as at sea level. This is because the total density of the air is less so the actual amount of oxygen available per cubic meter is also less. The same holds true for carbon dioxide. Air density at 1000 meters altitude is about ninety percent of its sea level value, and crops grown at that altitude have access to ninety percent of the CO2 at sea level despite the fact that the “concentration” as usually given is the same. Half of the land surface of the earth is about 840 meters above sea level, and the absolute concentration of CO2 there is therefore ninety percent less.

Now when will Engelbeen come to valiantly defend this very important pillar of CAGW? After all low CO2 is the KEY to CAGW.

Dr. Jaworowski tried to do the study to determine the accuracy of the Ice Core CO2 data but the funding was turned down because it was feared his study would “Disprove” the CO2 readings from the ice cores and we couldn’t have that now could we???

Another comment from Gail:

Gail Combs says:

Aside from the plants during the Ice Age showing the CO2 reading are way off there is another elephant in the room.

It is called Water Vapor.

95% of the green house effect is caused by WATER not CO2. It is up to 4% where as CO2 is a puny 0.036% That is why water is left out of the IPCC reports. (Another lie by omission)

Next what did the last ice age to to the water content of the atmosphere???

Glacial Climate and Sea Level
The North American and European ice sheets of the last glaciation began forming after a prolonged cold stage with increased precipitation (mostly snow in this case) took place. Once the ice sheets began forming, the cold landscape altered typical weather patterns by creating their own air masses. The new weather patterns that developed reinforced the initial weather that created them, plunging the various areas into a cold glacial period.

The warmer portions of the globe also experienced a change in climate due to glaciation in that most of them became cooler but drier. For example rainforest cover in West Africa was reduced and replaced by tropical grasslands because of a lack of rain.

At the same time, most of the world’s deserts expanded as they became drier….

So there goes the change of 100 ppm in CO2 having any effect because it would be completely swamped by the water vapor changes! Not to mention the effect of the Milankovich cycles that would directly effect those changes in the amount of water vapor.

The influence of these cycles on insolation (INcident SOLar radiATION) at different latitudes has been calculated by Berger (1991), and Laskar (1993). Below is Berger’s solution for 65 degrees north latitude from the present to 1 million years ago. In the Northern Hemisphere, peak summer insolation occurred about 9,000 years ago when the last of the large ice sheets melted. Since that time Northern Hemisphere summers have seen less solar radiation.

Of course we KNOW the sun has nothing to do with our climate because climate scientists tell us that is so. /sarc>

So as usual these [self-snip] scientists are busy chasing grant money with the get out of peer review CO2 card and not doing real science.

Another commenter:

higley7 says:

It is completely wrong to assume that CO2 measurements from ice cores have anything to do with absolute values. They can show trends and highs and lows, but they are NOT quantitative in any way. Jaworowski, the leading expert has stated that there is 30–50% losses of CO2 during the traumatic process of core extraction. If you back calculate the losses, you end up with CO2 concentrations the same or higher than now.

It is only the IPCC that likes to pretend that ice core data, clearly indirect data, is quantitative—it is NOT!

Posted in Measurements, Plant Growth | Leave a Comment »

CO2 Uptake Greater than Previously Thought

Posted by greg2213 on September 30, 2011

From WUWT:

The global uptake of carbon by land plants may be up to 45 per cent more than previously thought. This is the conclusion of an international team of scientists, based on the variability of heavy oxygen atoms in the carbon dioxide of the atmosphere driven by the El Niño effect. As the oxygen atoms in carbon dioxide were converted faster than expected during the El Niño years, current estimates for the uptake of carbon by plants are probably too low. These should be corrected upwards, say the researchers in the current issue of the scientific journal NATURE.

Here’s the rest: Plants gobbling up CO2 – 45% more than thought

Unlike the catastrophic fantasies of the Gore crowd, there is considerable real word evidence (enough to state it as fact) that plants love CO2 and more is definitely better. Here’s a tiny bit of that evidence, a video on improved plant growth with increased CO2.

The biosphere is greening up, CO2 to blame.

Posted in Benefits, CO2 | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

The Truth About Greenhouse Gases

Posted by greg2213 on August 19, 2011

From WUWT:

London, 17 August – The Global Warming Policy Foundation today publishes an outstanding briefing paper by the distinguished physicist Professor William Happer of Princeton University (USA).

In his paper The Truth About Greenhouse Gases, Professor Happer criticises the misguided scare-mongering about CO2 emissions as well as the habitual exaggeration of the likely impact and risks posed by global warming. He particularly laments the co-option of climate science by governments.

Here’s the rest and you’ll find a link to the report on that page: The Truth About Greenhouse Gases

Posted in CO2 | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

CO2 is Beneficial

Posted by greg2213 on August 15, 2011

Arrhenius, from way back when, did various experiments on CO2. One of the results of said experiments stated that the “sensitivity” of climate to CO2 was around 5C. While this has been shown to be wrong, it is still used as one of the bases to support CAGW.

What isn’t mentioned is that Arrenius thought that increased CO2 would be good for the Earth: Father Of Global Warming Believed That Doubling CO2 Was A Good Thing

Naturally, there are a few scientists who agree with him.

other posts: CO2 pollution. Not.

Posted in Benefits | Leave a Comment »

On CO2 Being Environmental, Rather than Anthropogenic

Posted by greg2213 on August 5, 2011

On JoNova:

Professor Murry Salby is Chair of Climate Science at Macquarie University. He’s been a visiting professorships at Paris, Stockholm, Jerusalem, and Kyoto, and he’s spent time at the Bureau of Meterology in Australia.

Over the last two years he has been looking at C12 and C13 ratios and CO2 levels around the world, and has come to the conclusion that man-made emissions have only a small effect on global CO2 levels. It’s not just that man-made emissions don’t control the climate, they don’t even control global CO2 levels.

Source: Blockbuster: Planetary temperature controls CO2 levels — not humans

Listen to the speech: “Global Emission of Carbon Dioxide: The Contribution from Natural Sources”


In a nutshell, the issue is rather simple, yet powerful. Salby is arguing that atmospheric CO2 increase that we observe is a product of temperature increase, and not the other way around, meaning it is a product of natural variation. This goes back to the 800 year lead/lag issue related to the paleo temperature and CO2 graphs Al Gore presented in his movie an An Inconvenient Truth.

Source: The Emily Litella moment for climate science and CO2?


Posted in Measurements | Leave a Comment »

Study finds global warming over past 4 centuries was due to increased solar activity

Posted by greg2213 on June 6, 2011

A peer-reviewed paper published in the Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics finds global warming over the 20th century “not significantly different” from warming episodes that occurred in earlier centuries. The paper finds that the increase in solar activity over the past 400 years explains the warming, without any need to search for a unique cause of late 20th century warming, such as greenhouse gas concentrations. The NIPCC website just posted this summary of the paper:

Here’s the rest of the post: Study finds global warming over past 4 centuries was due to increased solar activity

The paper is not behind a payway, so click the link above to get the link to the PDF. Given that papers of this sort have a much higher bar to pass than alarmist supporting papers I’m going to assume that it’s pretty solid. Conclusive? Who knows. A pretty good piece of research, yes.

A slightly variable sun causes warming of the surface and atmosphere which causes airstreams and currents which are affected by the physical location and shape of the landmasses and the Earth’s rotation, day night cycles, and a few other things. Somewhere CO2/methane might have something to do with it, but that’s looking less likely as time goes on.

One of the issues with the Global Warming concept is the lack of explanation for prior warm periods, warmer than the current period, when CO2 could not have been the driver. And if it was then we should be seeing seriously warmer temps today. We’re not.

Additionally, there is the lack of explanation for why the planet didn’t burn up in past ages when CO2 was far higher than today’s measly concentration. In fact, life flourished back then. If the CO2 concerns were real then we’d be seeing significantly higher, to much higher, temps today and at least some of the hysterical remarks would be coming true. At little bit, anyway.

As it is, all of them can by put into the “The End is Near” bin of failed religious cult predictions. 100% fail rate. If we need to mend our ways then the accusing side should have some credibility, I think. So far, they have none.

As far as I’m concerned, the sooner we got off the “CO2 is bad” kick, the better.

Posted in CO2, Scientists Say | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Prove CO2 Driven Warming, Make $10k

Posted by greg2213 on May 31, 2011

The Science is Settled, or so we’ve been told. The evidence is overwhelming, etc. Ok, so it is. Then this should be trivial. Just follow the link and collect your 10k. The only issue is if someone beat you to it. Good luck being first.

The Climate Change Challenge.

Posted in CO2 | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

New Paper: Warming Power of CO2 and H2O: Correlations with Temperature Changes

Posted by greg2213 on January 1, 2011

From WUWT:

Author: Paulo Cesar Soares


The dramatic and threatening environmental changes announced for the next decades are the result of models whose main drive factor of climatic changes is the increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Although taken as a premise, the hypothesis does not have verifiable consistence. The comparison of temperature changes and CO2 changes in the atmosphere is made for a large diversity of conditions, with the same data used to model climate changes. Correlation of historical series of data is the main approach. CO2 changes are closely related to temperature.

Warmer seasons or triennial phases are followed by an atmosphere that is rich in CO2, reflecting the gas solving or exsolving from water, and not photosynthesis activity. Interannual correlations between the variables are good. A weak dominance of temperature changes precedence, relative to CO2 changes, indicate that the main effect is the CO2 increase in the atmosphere due to temperature rising. Decreasing temperature is not followed by CO2 decrease, which indicates a different route for the CO2 capture by the oceans, not by gas re-absorption. Monthly changes have no correspondence as would be expected if the warming was an important absorption-radiation effect of the CO2 increase.

The anthropogenic wasting of fossil fuel CO2 to the atmosphere shows no relation with the temperature changes even in an annual basis. The absence of immediate relation between CO2 and temperature is evidence that rising its mix ratio in the atmosphere will not imply more absorption and time residence of energy over the Earth surface. This is explained because band absorption is nearly all done with historic CO2 values. Unlike CO2, water vapor in the atmosphere is rising in tune with temperature changes, even in a monthly scale. The rising energy absorption of vapor is reducing the outcoming long wave radiation window and amplifying warming regionally and in a different way around the globe.

Here’s the rest, including a link to the full paper: New paper – “absence of correlation between temperature changes … and CO2″

And a comment that I thought was really interesting, given all the reliance on correlation (which is still a necessary starting point:)

Anything is possible says:

If you extend back to 1958, the co-efficient of correlation between CO2 and HadCRUt global temperatures is 0.907.

How significant is that?

Well put it this way : The co-efficient of correlation between the number of Home Runs hit in MLB and HadCRUt global temperatures over the same time period is 0.885.

Make of that what you will!


Posted in CO2, Falsified | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »