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All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

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Comments 61551 to 61600:

  1. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    TOP, You put words in my mouth. I never said the term "greenhouse" was a misnomer. I'm not saying I agree or disagree, because as Riccardo says, who the h-e-double--climate-hockey-sticks cares? It's a pointless debate. But you seem to have missed the point. Yes, you understand the purpose of the Wood experiment, but you have failed to understand why the design of the experiment was flawed. Please go back and read what I wrote. You are completely missing everything. As far as an IR-opaque atmosphere leading to global cooling... how the h-e-double-climate-hockey-sticks do you get that?
  2. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    TOP, the term "greenhouse effect" is perfectly legitimate and useful for its intended use as a teaching and communication analogy for the high level mechanism: More energy comes in than goes out. You are obsessing about something of absolutely no consequence.
  3. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    I can't belive that the meme "greenhoue effect is a minomer" keeps poppping up. It really tells nothing about the science and is a distraction that no one nedd, not even the sceptics/deniers. If Arrhenius (who probably was the first to use this analogy) knew, I'm sure he would not use it. And who's going to tell Tyndall of the new findings that "That is hardly a troposphere opaque to IR"? Luckly, we have comforting breking news: "Greenhouses warm because convection is prevented and not because IR radiation is blocked." Who could immagine that! Sorry for the sarcasm, TOP. But really the knowledge of the physics of the atmosphere and of radiation is way beyond that. Maybe you're right that it's not denialism but sure enough it's not "experiment" either.
  4. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    @1154 Composer99 My experiment with the IR thermometer showed that the troposphere is not opaque to IR. Someone mentioned that I was measuring the temperature of the air around me with the IR thermometer. That is incorrect, I get essentially the same readings on a clear day whether the outside temperature is 90F or 20F. When clouds intervene the sky temperature goes up because the bottom of the clouds is lower and the clouds have to be at a temperature above freezing to exist. So, Connelly was wrong to say the troposphere is opaque to IR. G&T also talk about this in their discussion about how there can be frost on the ground when the air temperature is above freezing.
  5. Ocean Acidification: Corrosive waters arrive in the Bering Sea
    "Trying to look on the bright side, perhaps these regions provide a window to the future to see how higher oceanic CO2 concentrations can be expected to affect these productive ecosystems." Yes, but this is not the kind of experiment I think we should do!
  6. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    @1153 Sphaerica I'm glad you agree with G&T. The term "greenhouse" is a misnomer when talking about the atmosphere. G&T propose using the term "atmosphere effect".
    Fleagle and Businger (1963) [125] devoted a section of their text to the point, and suggested that radiation trapping by the Earth’s atmosphere should be called ‘atmosphere effect’ to discourage use of the misnomer. Munn (1966) [126] reiterated that the analogy between ‘atmosphere’ and ‘greenhouse’ effect ‘is not correct because a major factor in greenhouse climate is the protection the glass gives against turbulent heat losses’.[G&T quoting Lee, 1973]"Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics", Gerlich and Tscheuschner, 2009, p37
    Further, the purpose of the Wood experiment was to determine whether it was radiation or convection that caused a greenhouse to warm. The results of the experiment were that a)it was convection, or the lack thereof that caused the greenhouse to warm and b)the heating of the greenhouse was influenced by IR from the sun causing the rock salt greenhouse to be warmer since rock salt allowed more IR radiation into the greenhouse.
    When exposed to sunlight the temperature rose gradually to 65◦C, the enclosure covered with the salt plate keeping a little ahead of the other, owing to the fact that it transmitted the longer waves from the Sun, which were stopped by the glass. In order to eliminate this action the sunlight was first passed through a glass plate.[bolding mine][G&T quoting Wood, 1909]"Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics", Gerlich and Tscheuschner, 2009, p33
    Indeed, if the atmosphere were opaque to IR (longer wavelengths) we would expect global cooling based on this experiment.
    Moderator Response: [JH] There is no need for you to use a small font size for citations. If text is so tiny to be unreadable, it has no value.
  7. Ocean Acidification: Corrosive waters arrive in the Bering Sea
    Yvan, I wonder how much of the methane is converted to CO2 before it bubbles to the surface? Trying to look on the bright side, perhaps these regions provide a window to the future to see how higher oceanic CO2 concentrations can be expected to affect these productive ecosystems.
  8. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    Sphaerica : Absolutely, yes. But that basis can no longer be fossil fuels. Unfortunately, the investment and infrastructure for fossil fuels is so entrenched in our civilization that it will take many decades to replace it all... unless we try to do so in a too-rapidly painful way that will be as disruptive as climate change itself. Oh nice, we perfectly agree on that and so was my main point ! When you speak of a ‘painful’ and ‘disruptive’ decarbonization, that is exactly what I mean by ‘human evaluation of climate change’. You accept the fact that a part of the climate change is tolerable because a too abrupt energy change would be comparatively less tolerable. By doing so, you evaluate what is (more or less) good or bad for human society exactly as I suggest we should do. This does’nt mean you consider climate change as good in itself, but better (or not worse if you prefer) than an abrupt energy shortage. About climate, you’re projecting death and suffering in a possible and future world, but when it comes to human welfare, I’m personally speaking of death and suffering in our present and real world, for which certainty is 100% from observations, not X% from models. I confess that I‘m suspicious (and often irritated) toward climate-centered views that seem to ignore or relativize the other problems of humanity, the orders of magnitude of human needs in our world, the potentially damaging conflict between climate goals and energy supply, as I gave a concrete example with Indian dilemmas after Durban. But if your position is a realistic one, as it seems to be with this quote, there’s no problem : we agree. When it comes to solution, you must note that even if OECD divides by two its carbon emissions, what I hope we’ll do as fast at possible but what will already be a great challenge, this leave us with a 2 PgC decrease each year : but this quantity is what is henceforth added to annual emissions from developing countries in less than 10 years (see Peters et al 2011 in the carbon discussion) and this development is just the beginning of the great leap forward modernization of their societies. So let’s be clear : if we don’t want a ‘disruptive’ and ‘painful’ carbon plan, it will be very difficult to prevent a CO2 doubling. That’s why the very first priority is to ease the access to non-carbon energy everywhere it is possible, to reinforce the R&D in that domain and before all to price carbon externalities so as to give the good signal and improve RE competitiveness. At least I prefer this kind of clear way that to lose precious years with discussions around an unrealistic world 450 ppm target, not even mentioning the 350 ppm Hansenian ideal. PS : You point out the risk of fossil ‘near exhaustion’ : I suggest this could be another very good argument for a huge effort in decarbonization – and perhaps the future deus ex machina for a rapid (but if so difficult) energy transition. Tom Curtis seems to be very optimistic about fossil reserves, when suggesting in #44 we’ve enough for CO2 4600 ppmv, and CO2 1000 ppmv in this century. These ‘geologic’ quantities from USGS Survey (or ‘cornucopian’ estimates of Lomborg’s style) are IMO far from the real quantities we can extract and use at a sustainable cost for our economy. But we'll check that point well before 2050, or even 2030.
  9. Ocean Acidification: Corrosive waters arrive in the Bering Sea
    Thanks for the update on ocean acidification. I look forward to the next post on oysters in the Pacific Northwest. A couple of editorial comments on this post: 1. "colder water being able to absorb more CO2" -- the water isn't getting colder, so "cold water" may be less confusing. 2. "further melt-induced warming feeds more nutrients" -- not sure what is meant here ... perhaps warming-induced melt increases run-off? 3. "warm seawater both contribute to higher mortality" -- could you expand on this? By what mechanism does warmer water influence mortality? Is it just quicker life cycle turnover or is it higher metabolism interacting with carbonate undersaturation? Thanks!
  10. Infrared Iris Never Bloomed
    Excellent job, Dana.
  11. Arctic sea ice has recovered
    peacetracker, some information on Arctic volume uncertainty and validation can be found here and here. The point your 'sceptic' is making about 'estimates vs actual measurements' is belied by the fact that the estimates closely match the actual measurements where those are available. Basically, it is like claiming that if we have a +/- 0.01 C uncertainty on the precise global temperature anomaly at any given time then we should ignore the +0.8 C total change in the anomaly. The 'uncertainty' around Arctic ice volume is mis-used in exactly the same way... we might be slightly off the exact value at any given point, but there is absolutely no question that the volume has dropped precipitously.
  12. Ocean Acidification: Corrosive waters arrive in the Bering Sea
    To the list of arctic environmental pressure you can add massive outgasing. Warning! Dont read the following if you are depressive! http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/shock-as-retreat-of-arctic-sea-ice-releases-deadly-greenhouse-gas-6276134.html
  13. Antarctica is gaining ice
    DSL, wow that IS a bit odd. Antarctic sea ice is expected to eventually start declining, but this seems more likely to be some sort of short-term fluctuation. The 'growth' in Antarctic sea ice has been small enough that the current year amount still drops below the long term average semi-regularly. This contrasts with the situation in the Arctic where skeptics got excited earlier this year about the extent coming CLOSE to the long term average for the first time in years. Make sure to read this: get far cry 3. Thus, the current dip is unusual, but not unprecedented. Looks like the Southern melt season started about two weeks early for some reason.
  14. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    @1150,355 muoncounter I'm talking about those responding to the original post. In fact I wonder if the OP actually read G&T. As for comment #2, that post says G&T is completely wrong. That is a pretty broad statement. It means that the experiment that they did to show what the greenhouse effect is was wrong. And it means that in your quote of Connelly, he was wrong. The posts seem to wander away from dealing with G&T ad nauseum.
  15. Pete Dunkelberg at 03:59 AM on 14 December 2011
    Ocean Acidification: Corrosive waters arrive in the Bering Sea
    Thanks for this very educational post. Slightly off topic but there has to be a place at Skeptical Science to mention this educational asset: Serendipity gives us a treasure trove for educators. Does SkS have a way to bring this to broader notice?
  16. Arctic sea ice has recovered
    I am currently engaged in debate with a sceptic over this issue and he maintains that sceptics do not accept the data when it comes to ice volume due to the great uncertainties involved. His main problem seems to be the fact that there are many data points that are estimates rather than actual measurements.I have asked him to provide me with some peer reviwed science that would justify this claim but he has not yet got back to me, although I only posted him yesterday. I am aware that there are indeed uncertainties in this area and that estimates need to be used but are there any papers that demonstrate the reliability and valdity of the data used in measuring sea ice volume? Thanks.
  17. It's not bad
    Regarding the entries about western tree mortality, pine beetles under the Environment negatives in the Intermediate tab, I quote from a blog post by a fellow I've known for more than forty years. This is not peer-reviewed science, but I think it reflects a human perspective on those environmental negatives (the ellipses in the post are his, and I have omitted nothing): "I got lost in the details of travel and the hassle of finding places to work on the blog/sort pictures and talk about the travels. The massive environmental upheaval caused by global warming in the pine and spruce forest of Idaho and Montana is stunning. The forest is dieing. Pine Beetle and Spruce Moths are unchecked by the long frosts of winter. The result is hundreds perhaps thousands square miles of dead and dieing forests. There is the loss of the wood and timber...the water holding of the trees, the air purification, the oxygen generation but, more.... The millions of pine and spruce needles in the waters have changed the PH of the lakes and streams. The water born insect life is gone. Three different streams, three hoops set out for three days each ... less than 20 insects collected where there should have been thousands. Breeding salmon seen but no fry, no first or second year fish, no trout, no white fish, no suckers...the streams are dead. "Sorry my mind is still struggling with the facts and unsure as to how I will deal with those who say my truth is lies. Will they come walk the streams, roll the rocks, hang the hoops, count the insects, float the rivers and prove me wrong or will they simply move their mouths in denial? I was unable to write this last summer and do not know what I can do this year."
  18. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    TOP: Even contrarian scientist Roy Spencer points out that the physical basis for global warming (outgoing longwave infrared radiation being trapped by the atmosphere) is correct. Both surface-measured backradiaton from the atmosphere and satellite-measured reduction in radiation at greenhouse gas-related frequesncies are empirically documented in the literature. The simple fact is that physical theory, experiment, and empirical evidence show that, however misnamed, greenhouse gases in the atmosphere trap outgoing heat and cause warming. Also, did you not actually read the quote you cited? It states, right there that "the troposphere is largely opaque to infra-red radiation". How could that be, I wonder?
  19. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    105, TOP, The Wood experiment is invalid and you misunderstand Connelly. SkS will have a post on it soon, but in a nutshell the problem with the experiment (actually, there are a few) is that the model is not an accurate representation of the atmosphere exactly because convection and other mechanisms in the experiment are allowed to heat the glass and rock salt plates, which removes any temperature gradient between the heated "surface" and the covering "top of atmosphere". Basically, the glass and rock salt both radiate at the same temperature as the inside of the box because they've been allowed to warm by means other than radiation. The atmosphere does not work this way, and the model represented by the experiment therefore does not accurately represent that actions of the atmosphere. More importantly, the experiment is therefore not properly controlled to be certain that the effect being measured is only that of infrared radiation versus other means. It basically tests if convection occurs in a closed box -- not a very useful thing to know. To perform the experiment correctly the transfer of radiation by means other than radiation must be inhibited (as it is in the atmosphere, where convection is not efficient or active enough to transfer that much energy to the point in the atmosphere where heat radiates away). In the case of the more correct experiment, the rock-salt plate will remain cool and IR will be emitted through it according to the temperature of the "surface" which is heated only by the incoming short-wave radiation, while the surface within the other box will heat further until an equilibrium is reached where the "surface" warms further than the rock-salt box and the glass plate itself has warmed — purely through absorbing IR — and is emitting infrared both up and down. On your own experiment... you are not measuring the temperature of the stratosphere. The air around you is densely packed with CO2 and H2O which are radiating in the infrared and contaminating your experiment. You are merely measuring the emissions of the atmosphere immediately above you.
  20. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    @1150,355 muoncounter I looked at a particular reference you cited, W. M. Connelly, June 2000 in which Connelly takes exception to Woods (1909) statements in the 2nd to the last paragraph while disregarding the implications experiment with the rock salt greenhouse. G&T performed the same experiment and got the same results as Wood. Note: Both G&T even refined the experiment so that the two "greenhouses" achieved much closer agreement in temperature by blocking IR from entering the rock salt greenhouse. Since Connelly was taking exception to the 2nd to the last paragraph and not the results or implications of the experiment it isn't much of a rebuttal. The results of the experiment which Connelly seems to be in agreement with is that the "greenhouse" effect has nothing to do with radiation being trapped on it's way back to space which is born out by the fact the plate glass is perfectly opaque to IR while rock salt is perfectly transparent to IR.
    Third, in contradiction to his assertion about "the very low radiating power of a gas", the troposphere is largely opaque to infra-red radiation, which is why convection is so important in moving heat up from the surface. Only in the higher (colder) atmosphere where there is less water vapour is the atmosphere simultaneously somewhat, but not totally, transparent to infra-red and thus permits radiation to play a part. [bolding is mine for emphasis]
    The "greenhouse" effect has everything to do with the prevention of convection from cooling the surfaces on which radiation impinges. In other words the AGW crowd in incorrect in applying the term "greenhouse effect" to anything to do with trapping radiation. That pretty much renders useless much of the discussion in this thread having to do with radiation. And as an added bonus Connelly attributes the opaqueness of the atmosphere to IR to water vapor, not CO2 I will also add that if anything was done incorrectly in the experiments of Wood, G and T, it was in not also measuring the pressure and hence the enthalpy change inside the greenhouse. And I have from time to time done an experiment of my own that contradicts Connelly's assertion that the troposphere is opaque to infrared. I simply went outside with an non-contact IR thermometer and pointed it at the sky on a clear day and a cloudy day. On a clear day, even with sun at noon you get something on the order of -55F while on a cloudy day you get something on the order of 32F. In fact today, while it is lightly raining the "sky temperature" is 27F. So on a clear day I can easily measure the temperature of the stratosphere from the ground with an IR thermometer and on a cloudy day I can measure the temperature of the bottom of the clouds. That is hardly a troposphere opaque to IR. So you have to deal with two experimental pieces of evidence that show that Connelly is right and in agreement with both Wood and G&T, that is, convection or the lack thereof, not radiation that is responsible for controlling the temperature in the atmosphere. G&T, Connolly and Wood are in agreement that "greenhouse effect" is a misnomer and should not be used in the context of global warming. Greenhouses warm because convection is prevented and not because IR radiation is blocked. There is no "greenhouse" effect in the atmosphere. This is not denialist, it is experiment.
  21. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    67, skept.fr,
    ...over-anthropomorphized nature...
    Anthropomorphization is a literary and rhetorical tool. Nothing more. I don't really think it can be "overdone" because it's niether good nor bad... it's just a writing style.
    ...the ultimate qualification of good/bad relies on human evaluation...
    If you believe this, then you really do not understand either the science or the implications. Please understand this, even a result that only takes us 1/4 of the way to the sort of change implied by my article will be very, very bad for a whole lot of people. Human beings adapt, but they do not deal well with adaptation. Adaptation means death and suffering. Resource pressures mean wars and suffering. Major, outwardly forced change means economic and social upheaval -- and suffering. Throughout human history this has been the case. If you actually believe climate change will be even remotely good for civilization or for most individuals, you need to study the science more and you need to think it through more completely. You are stopping at the obvious, easy, pleasant conclusion without getting all the way to the end. Man does not deal well with change. Climate change will mean suffering. There is no way around that.
    ...fossil-based development during the last two centuries is one of the most astonishing accomplishment in human history...
    Absolutely, yes! Industrialization advanced civilization and society by leaps and bounds, but at the same time it lead to the suffering of masses and masses of people in the 18th century. It was a good thing that came with a lot of evil. Fossil fuels (and other advanced technologies) freed us from much of that burden. There is no question that the use of fossil fuels for the past century were a tremendous boon to quality of life and the advancement of our civilization. It does not, however, logically follow that we must then insanely follow that course to the point where it damages or even destroys the very same civilization that it advanced.
    ...fundamentally, I believe economy and society depends on their energy basis...
    Absolutely, yes. But that basis can no longer be fossil fuels. Unfortunately, the investment and infrastructure for fossil fuels is so entrenched in our civilization that it will take many decades to replace it all... unless we try to do so in a too-rapidly painful way that will be as disruptive as climate change itself. It will take a very long time to replace all of the power plants, engines, vehicles (cars/ships/planes), fuel-transport systems and more. But replacement is ultimately necessary anyway, because machines age and require replacement. It's just a question of what you replace it with, starting soon enough, and having viable things to use in their stead (such as hybrid cars, which have been readily available for a decade and yet are woefully uncommon on the roads). And that's why we have to start now, and that's why people who now say (this is you) "it may not be bad" or "it's not happening" or "we can't afford to change" are only making the problem far, far worse than it already is or needs to be. The world does not need more excuses to fly someone across the ocean for a 1-hour meeting (my brother used to do that regularly), or to drive 3-ton SUVs 1 mile to the store to pick up one loaf of bread after that loaf was baked 500 miles away using grain that was grown 1,000 miles from there, only to throw away half of the loaf because it got a little stale, all using an energy source that we know is (a) near exhaustion and (b) dangerously dirty... it's insanity!!!!
  22. Infrared Iris Never Bloomed
    5. Agnostic, with regards to cloud albedo. Water droplets are more effective reflectors than ice crystals, which should explain why higher clouds have lower albedo than lower clouds.
  23. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    Sphaerica : to continue with the playing matches / Anthropocene debate, and to understand our divergence, you seem to assume that climate stabilization would be good thing in itself. In the same spirit, Steve L @6 also suggested that you ‘over-anthropomorphized nature’. Maybe I’m wrong, but this the impression I have. It is clearly not the way I approach the question : climate change is not a good or bad thing in itself, the ultimate qualification of good/bad relies on human evaluation about the consequences of climate change on human society. I assume this is an anthropocentric point of view, and I think such an anthropocentrism is the rule for a majority of humans in their personal and collective choices. It does not mean nature has no value at all, to the contrary. A majority of humans can value biodiversity (for example) but this value is ultimately human-based. That is the sense of the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment , which analysed changes in ecosystem in the perspective of human (not animal or vegetal) well-being. So, I’m not satisfied at all with fuzzy predictions / estimations that warming may be 2 to 8 K, biodiversity loss 10% to 70%, crops productivity change +5% to -40%, ultimate cost-accessible fossil reserve from 600 to 6000 GtC, climate equilibrium sensitivity pace decades to millenias, 2100 sea level change 40cm to 160 cm, and so on. Because usually, the lower and the higher extremes of these ranges have not the same consequences for the human choices in term of evaluation of well-being. Usually, I’m answered something like : “OK but the only fact that there is a X% probability for the most adverse hypothesis should be the guide of our action”. But that could be true until you prove that the action in question has not itself a higher probability of adverse effect on human well-being. If your prior assumption is that action is risk-free, your value judgment is unbalanced. If you assume (as I do) that the fossil-based development during the last two centuries is one of the most astonishing accomplishment in human history, and a huge amelioration of human well-being for those who have benefited of it, the simple idea that we must cut very fastly the fossil (80%) basis of this long term trend is to be analysed very carefully. And particularly when the majority of humanity just begins to access the welfare Westerners already enjoy. Because a bad idea could easily produce a bad outcome, and human history is very clear on that point (for example near thirty million Chinese died of famine in 1959-1961 because of Mao’s delirium about agriculture, Hitler’s ascent because Germany was stupidly humiliated after 1918 and because of 1929 crisis, etc. Unintended consequences are unhappily a constant of human fate, and that’s not just true about externalities of fossil use!) Of course, the secular progress I refer to is due to energy, not fossil in itself. And to many other factors like democracy, education, trade, etc. But fundamentally, I believe economy and society depends on their energy basis, if you have just biomass and human-animal muscles as sources of energy, you’ll just produce something like a feudal society, with no means to transform nature and society, to create wealth and all the interesting things we can do with wealth (for example sophisticated study of climate). That’s why I say that climate challenge depends now mostly on energy challenge : you have to produce a mostly non-carbon base for the development of 7 billion humans now and 9 billion in 2050, you have to convince now the less-developed societies that their well-being will be more affected by a future climate change due to the use of a certain quantity fossil rather than by a present socio-economic change due to the non-use of the same quantity of fossil, etc. For that purpose, proposals like ‘There will be more droughts, floods, species losses (and whatever you want)’ is a far too undefined threat, you need to specify the ‘more’ in question and translate it in a kind of human welfare equivalent. That is the IPCC WG2 and WG3 assignment, by the way. So, I hope these points have specified the way I interpret your article and the objections I formulated to it. To be clear, I strongly favour energy transitions toward non-carbon economy, with some constraining instruments to achieve that goal, but I don't think the 'obsession' of a particular (450 ppm) target is of real utility. I'm sure everybody here is already convinced that this concentration will be exceeded, so we need to understand more precisely why it will be, so as to prevent far higher concentrations in the future. We must not be fatalistic and w climate casualties is the sole argument for change (eg things like 'there will be megadroughts in the 2020s or 2030s, and then maybe humans will understand') PS : for more precise dilemma in the new era of climate negotiation, like the concrete Indian choices for 2012-2030, see for example my comments in the other thread about Global carbon emissions .
  24. Hansen predicted the West Side Highway would be underwater
    DirtyDigger, that same link is included in the article above... and the text of the link itself claims that Hansen's prediction has already failed... which is impossible given that it was for a future event which might still occur.
  25. Hansen predicted the West Side Highway would be underwater
    Yes, they did http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/10/22/a-little-known-but-failed-20-year-old-climate-change-prediction-by-dr-james-hansen/
  26. Global carbon emissions reach record 10 billion tonnes - threatening two degree target
    From the Peters et al 2011 paper in Nature Climate Change, here are the carbon emissions from production and consumption for developing / non developing countries, 1990-2010: The interpretation is quite clear: developing countries more than doubled their carbon emissions in 20 years, while developed countries have known a stagnation, or a small increase when consumption is included. The 2008-2009 recession had no effect on the emerging economies, contrary to a slight fall for the OECD. So, the decoupling of economic growth and fossil energy use is still to be invented, and the very first concern in term of emission is for the non-OECD countries, because if we keep this slope, emissions for non-Annex B could be as high as 10 or 15 PgC in 2030, largely outweighing the accessible emission's cuts of 1 or 2 PgC in OECD in the same period.
  27. Wakening the Kraken
    There is some news on this front, as Semiletov has reported his results on AGU last week: Arctic methane: Russian researchers report
  28. Global carbon emissions reach record 10 billion tonnes - threatening two degree target
    #2, 3 John : about Indian policy, this comment on Durban , from NR Krishnan (former ministry of environment) : India, now, has the unenviable task of reworking its entire energy strategy. In December 2005, the Planning Commission had released an expert committee report on India's Integrated Energy Policy (the finalised report was released in 2006). The report came out with projections of the country's energy requirements up to the year 2031-32 along with likely scenarios of energy generation from various fossil fuels, nuclear power stations (present and future ones) and renewable sources with GDP growth pegged at 8 per cent annually. It came out that by 2031-32, primary energy supply would need to grow by “3 to 4 times and electricity supply by 5 to 7 times of today's consumption.” In all the scenarios of possible sources and their contributions towards satisfying this energy demand, coal predominates to the extent of over 40 per cent with oil hovering at 28-30 per cent. Gas, as fuel, would remain with a contribution of 7-12 per cent. Clean energy sources would account for about 16 per cent only. All these projections would now need to be revisited and that won't be an easy exercise. According to studies commissioned by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, by 2031-32, India's annual emissions of GHGs are expected to go up from an estimated 1.5 to 2 billion tonnes in 2010 to 4-7 billion tonnes in 2031. The economic and social readjustments called for by any new agreement to limit emissions are difficult to imagine. It would certainly be a good thing to enforce social rules for Coal India workers. But climate rules for coal in India will have to deal with the basic needs of the most populous country of the world. When you have to feed, light, heat, educate, transport, treat 1,2 billion of persons, and expected 1,6 billion in 2050, you must produce by a way or another huge amounts of primary energy. As an order of magnitude, for a modest 70 GJ/c/y (twice to fourth less than European countries, and less than the optimal correlation with HDI at 110GJ/c/y), India would need to produce 84 EJ each year now, 112 EJ/y in 2050. The current value is approx 25 EJ/y. To forbid the use of coal (first energetic resource of the country) or to impose CCS will have an economic and social cost for Indian population. Adn that's true of course for all emerging countries which have fossil reserves in their ground. So one problem of COP negotiations is: what is exactly this cost and who must pay for that?
  29. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    KR, Bill : I'm not sure that there's a real basis for your dissent. Of course climate models, even AOGCMs of AR4 and the future Earth System Models of AR5, are "approximations" because many phenomenons on small scale are semi-empirically parametrized. And many others are poorly known or unknown (eg all details of the biogeochemical cycles, for example future behavior of CH4 sources). Gavin Schmidt once precised this fact in an introduction to the physics of climate modeling (my emphasis): Current climate models yield stable and nonchaotic climates, which implies that questions regarding the sensitivity of climate to, say, an increase in greenhouse gases are well posed and can be justifiably asked of the models. Conceivably, though, as more components — complicated biological systems and fully dynamic ice-sheets, for example — are incorporated, the range of possible feedbacks will increase, and chaotic climates might ensue. So, the fact that climate is non-chaotic does not appear so much as a robust and intrinsic physical property of climate, but rather just as a provisional conclusion from the current physics of models. Jsquared : ah, on finira bien par s'entendre :D
  30. Galactic cosmic rays: Backing the wrong horse
    Hi again Eric @71 It is generally understood that the inner and outer Van Allen belts result from different processes. The inner belt, consisting mainly of energetic protons, is the product of the decay of so-called "albedo" neutrons which are themselves the result of cosmic ray collisions in the upper atmosphere. The outer belt consists mainly of electrons. They are injected from the geomagnetic tail following geomagnetic storms, and are subsequently energized though wave-particle interactions. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Van_Allen_radiation_belt I don't know whether you have looked at this process If not it may help.
  31. Galactic cosmic rays: Backing the wrong horse
    skywatcher the GCR's my top plot in 38 show upward spikes (inverted show depicted as downwards) without much response during glacial periods. Although scaddenp points out above that the Be10 proxy may not be not well understood. The necessary conditions for an interglacial appear to be consistently low GCRs for some period of time. I don't think any of the temperature spikes in #29 during the Laschamp event show fall into the interglacial category. I don't know why high cosmic rays precluded any warming at all during that event. In general I don't think there are any control knobs that are that exact, CO2 and TSI included. For one thing all but TSI have a saturation effect. The CO2 also tracks because it is an amplifier (as well as a control knob in relatively cold conditions). The other exogenous control knobs cannot also be amplifiers by definition. The biggest unresolved question IMO is how the electric field and other cosmic ray effects shown to act on the order of minutes on clouds by Lockwood, Harrison and others could have anything to do with a causal effect over 1000's of years. That is particularly problematic when the effects vary by latitude, there is no worldwide effect. A possible mechanism is the low GCR environment with "fewer low clouds" (very crude I realize) allows more solar ocean heating which warms over longer time periods.
  32. Plimer vs Plimer: a one man contradiction
    Any chance of tackling Plimer's new book here at SkS? Soon? The fact that it's aimed directly at schoolchildren really concerns me (one suspects the caning H&E received at the hands of grown-up scientists may have had something to do with this!)
    Moderator Response: [Rob P] Things are underway.
  33. Infrared Iris Never Bloomed
    5. Agnostic, added to the point above, you can see the diagram in the post shows a smaller red up arrow from the high cloud, which tallies with what I was saying. It's suggesting a higher optical albedo for low clouds, which I'd have to check. My speculation is that droplets in clouds tend to be Mie scatterers, so larger particles mean more scattering. If you check here, it suggests smaller optical radii and lower density of droplets for stratus (higher) clouds versus cumulus (lower) ones - I expect that higher droplet density and bigger droplets would encourage more scattering and ultimately higher albedo. I normally leave the atmospheric work to someone else, so perhaps I will be corrected!
  34. Infrared Iris Never Bloomed
    5. Agnostic, the difference between high and low clouds is mainly dominated by the infrared effect, iirc. Clouds near the surface are warmer, and the cloud-tops radiate upwards at near the surface temperature - their 'greenhouse effect' is very small. Clouds high up are a lot cooler. So they block outgoing heat, but they don't radiate as much of it upwards, so they have a large effective greenhouse effect. Both of them reflect sunlight, which cools us. You might wonder how upper clouds could be a net cooling when sunlight is pretty intense, but remember that the greenhouse effect works day AND night! This rough model is what's quoted in PhysicsWorld here.
  35. Plimer vs Plimer: a one man contradiction
    Stevo@31 I too wonder why Plimer and Howard think it is acceptable to exploit children, let alone for such a transparently political one. I hope they get the parental backlash they surely deserve. Tom Curtis@30 Precisely - it's gob-smacking coming from someone like Plimer, who shouted so loud and long against Creationism being given "equal time" in science classes about evolution.
  36. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    BillEverett - My previous post is/was strongly worded, perhaps too much so. But I would have to note that your "hypothetical paleoclimate model" with bears little resemblance to what you are criticizing. Hence your statements are really a strawman argument, a logical fallacy.
  37. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    BillEverett - "Without examining a climate model in detail, I can nevertheless say that many of the couplings in the model are phenomenological approximations, i.e., they are not equations derived from fundamental physical laws..." I believe the proper term here is "talking through your hat". I would suggest actual study of global circulation climate models before making such unsupported statements. The whole point of global climate modelling is to take physical laws, compute fine detailed effects (as fine as the computing time and memory allows), and see what happens. Your statement is quite simply unsupportable, reflecting a lack of knowledge (and a surfeit of opinion) on your part.
  38. Plimer vs Plimer: a one man contradiction
    There again it is easier than making your case against erudite and qualified professionals in the climate science community.
  39. Plimer vs Plimer: a one man contradiction
    And I'm surprised that John Howard should surface out of retirement to support this rubbish. Regardless of his ideolocal background and political posturings I rather stupidly thought he had a better grasp of science than he is now demonstrating by helping Plimer launch this garbage. Interesting that they use the excuse of combatting the ideological indoctrination of children by themselves ideologically indoctrinating children.
  40. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    Ian Forrester@62: The reason for my skepticism about the ability of my hypothetical "perfect" paleoclimate model to predict our future correctly, in general, has to do with the simplicity of models. More specifically, I see no reason for my hypothetical paleoclimate model, for example, to include arctic permafrost as a source of CH4. "Applicability domain" of a model is a standard concept in theoretical physics. In our current situation, I see several reasons for thinking that we are or soon might be outside the applicability domain of the "perfect" paleoclimate model. This has nothing to do with the universal validity of fundamental physical laws. Without examining a climate model in detail, I can nevertheless say that many of the couplings in the model are phenomenological approximations, i.e., they are not equations derived from fundamental physical laws. It is very often the case that an increase in the order of a coupling approximation is necessary for increasing the applicability domain of a model.
  41. Galactic cosmic rays: Backing the wrong horse
    Skywatcher, I owe you an answer...
  42. Galactic cosmic rays: Backing the wrong horse
    #67, muoncounter, I believe they are talking about the local climate.
  43. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    TOP - if the article doesnt convince of the nonsense in this paper, try the more exhaustive treatment at science of doom. Quoting G&T is crank-alert material. Like any science, if your theoretical prediction is at odds with reality, then you need to fix the theory.
  44. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    TOP, G&T is the subject of this post, as far back as comment #2, which establishes the basis: They are wrong. You could also note that its the first paper listed under 'References,' with the comment by Halpern et al a close second. Try reading the posts.
  45. Infrared Iris Never Bloomed
    Ah but previous warming and current warming is due to natural factors. And nature is very tolerant and happy with natural efforts to change the climate and turns a blind iris to such changes. But as soon as man dares be arrogant enough to think that he can beat nature in the climate control game, the iris is whipped out to stare down man into submission and show us who is really boss of the climate. And of course the Iris will not only stabilise planety temperature for us through changes in the amount of clouds, these changes to clouds will occur without any possible changes to rainfall and drought patterns on the planet.
  46. 2nd law of thermodynamics contradicts greenhouse theory
    I wonder if anybody in this blog actually tried to read Gerlich and Tscheuschner? I haven't seen any comment on this statement:
    Authors trace back their origins to the works of Fourier [37,38] (1824), Tyndall [39–43] (1861) and Arrhenius [44–46] (1896). A careful analysis of the original papers shows that Fourier’s and Tyndall’s works did not really include the concept of the atmospheric greenhouse effect, whereas Arrhenius’s work fundamentally differs from the versions of today. With exception of Ref. [46], the traditional works precede the seminal papers of modern physics, such as Planck’s work on the radiation of a black body [33, 34]. Although the arguments of Arrhenius were falsified by his contemporaries.... Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics,version 4.0, Gerlich and Tscheuschner, 2009, p13
    or perhaps this:
    There seems to exist no source where an atmospheric greenhouse effect is introduced from fundamental university physics alone.Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics,version 4.0, Gerlich and Tscheuschner, 2009, p15
    Of course the authors go on to attempt to do this or not do it as the case may be.
  47. Galactic cosmic rays: Backing the wrong horse
    Eric, you don't have to convince me that LGM conditions tend to be drier. What you have to convince me of is a connection between cosmic rays and climate, of which there is no observational or experimental evidence! To justify your statement in #60 about when GCRs could and could not affect climate, you'd have to have a mechanism by which they affect climate. Otherwise you're playing word games and wasting time with wild speculation. What is the mechanism (as I asked in #46 with reference to the article on SkS showing what is required by the GCR speculations)? Also worth noting that the Laschamp anomaly (graph in #29) covers both colder and warmer conditions according to delta-18O, so discussions about dustiness of the atmosphere are pretty spurious.
  48. (Fahrenheit) 451 ppm
    BillEverett #52:
    Suppose we have developed a perfect paleoclimate simulation model that with the proper initial data exactly reproduces all the available relevant time series data for the time period 799000 BC to 1000 AD. Will this model be able to correctly predict our future climate? I tend to doubt it. If we had such a model, then I think we would know more than we do now about some of the complex interactions we should take into acouunt. Nevertheless, we may be in an entirely new ball game with a new set of rules.
    Wrong, the Laws of Physics, which determine climate, were exactly the same 800,000 years ago as they are today. They have not changed. Increasing forcings by increasing CO2 will have the same effect on temperature as a similar forcing due to orbital variation. Temperature will go up and feed backs will come into play.
  49. The Physical Chemistry of Carbon Dioxide Absorption
    You're welcome; glad to help.
  50. The Physical Chemistry of Carbon Dioxide Absorption
    Thanks, DB.

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