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What are the Common Purposes? I've dwelt on that question since first reading my alma mater's founding principle "for the purposes of instructing persons, who may choose to apply themselves, in the application of science to the common purposes of life". The question, more than any answer I may ever offer, has guided me through many personal and professional endeavors. And, if I have learned anything it is that I have derived my greatest joy when I, as part of a team, have made a lasting difference to improve the lives of others. Should the thoughts I share here and the ensuing discussion lead others to ask the same question, to seek their own answers and to experience the same joy as I, then I shall consider this effort of value.

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Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

Posted February 08, 2007 12:33 PM by MillMatt

I recently attended a lecture on global warming given by Bob Reiss, author of "The Coming Storm". I had hoped the presentation would be a thoughtful discussion of the issues, impact on our lives and options. Instead, we were treated to another presentation of anecdotal stories, (flooding in the Maldives, etc.), uninformed rants against major corporations (Exxon, in particular) and a call to write our elected officials. And, of course, there were the obligatory (but futile?) pleas to use energy efficient light bulbs, insulate our homes and buy hybrid vehicles.

Despite the good intentions of Al Gore and others, there still is too much emotion and vitriol permeating the discussion. As the clamor grows, I believe it is time for the discussion to shift from the possible causes of global warming to a more substantive discussion on reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) and other Green House Gas (GHG) emissions. There is compelling, quantitative information on emission reductions from many resources, including: the Pew Center, USCAPS (an industry consortium including Alcoa, BP, Dupont, GE and other), the World Bank and the United Nations.

I am particularly intrigued by CAIT, the Climate Analysis Indicators Tool, offered by the World Resources Institute. As shown on their web page, Navigating the Numbers, they have presented some very interesting information in graphical format. In the first chart, Global Emissions of CO2 from Fossil Fuels, since 1940 such emissions have grown from under 5 billion tons of CO2 annually to over 25 billion tons in 2004. The second chart, World GHG (green house gas) Emissions Flow Chart, shows the industrial source and activity that created the GHG's.

From an engineering perspective, I am focusing my attention on reducing CO2 and GHG emissions because I (and CR4 readers) can make the most meaningful contribution there on both a personal and professional basis. And, while I appreciate that there are significant social, economic and political agendas, is it naïve to suggest that we all focus on reducing such emissions to levels found in the early part of the last century? Or, is it just that simple?

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#1

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/08/2007 10:53 PM

I just watched the NOVA Special on Global Dimming and Global Warming and found it quite informative. I am appalled that such a simple message as "Man impacts his environment" and impacts it to such an extent that it may impact the climate has become so politicized. In talking to peirs I sometimes feel we could just slide right into debating evolution versus creation and never miss a beat in the intensity.

I am with you. My steps are 1) reduce my carbon footprint as much as feasible without resorting to living as a caveman again and 2) help fund solutions.

I will leave the lunch room debates alone and as for pundits telling me what is true....come one get the technical facts before you tell me what to believe

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#2

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 1:21 AM

Global warming is a proven fact - end of construction. Cost effective convenience drives individual energy action. Individuals employed in energy supply react with the demanded dedication. Individuals with limited income react within budget restraints. Individuals with unlimited income react within confines of convenience.

The scientific proof of global warming is encapsulated in one or more of the above constraints - where one's money supply originates - wherein one's money demand lies - or wherein lies compliance with comfort and convenience.

No further proof of global warming exist nor is required. The EU, US, & Al agree and no one must challenge the facts. Global warming will either result in warming or cooling of earthly global goals. Whether either occurs or not, we all know for a fact that humans control their own destiny and that of the world according to global warning.

The Oregon governator will become job terminator for those that "don't get it".

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#4
In reply to #2

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 7:42 AM

...therefore the solutions applied depend on the financial circumstances of the person or organisation considering the application, which depend on money source and sink fluctuations, which are a function of taxation, which depends on political will, which depends on policy, which depends on public support, which depends on the aggregated inputs from all the people.

So it truly is in the hands of the individual.

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#27
In reply to #2

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 4:25 PM

First off let me say I am all in favor of reducing emissions and there are many reasons for that. Global warming just doesnt happen to be one of them...


About a week ago, I happened upon a segment on the Larry King Show, which is where I am coming to believe most folks in the general public are getting their scientific input. Four individuals including Bill Nye (the Science Guy), a female reporter arguing that "the science of global warming is solid", a gentleman from a development agency, and a professor of Atmospheric Science from MIT were at it about Global Warming. I was quite surprized at how much rhetoric there was spouted from Bill Nye and the reporter.

I had to chuckle when the MIT professor, who appeared to be a key player on the scientific panel currently putting together "the report scheduled to be coming out about global warning" told the reporter she was basically misinformed. She and Mr. Nye kept arguing that "the science for global warming is solid"; the professor just rebutted "what science are you talking about?"

It seemed that his position is "yes there is global warming", but that the impact of mankind's actions on the issue is minimal at best. [We as human beings are confronted with something happening to our environment that has occurred time and again in the history of this planet and we actually believe our actions are all important. What arrogance!!] One volcanic eruption has more effect on global warming than any of our actions.

Even the rain forest connection doesnt hold up. While I have personally observed the damage that can occur from depletion of the rain forests, and it causes other problems, that is not the main source whereby CO2 is converted to O2 in the atmosphere; I understand that almost 70% of the CO2 to O2 conversion occurs typically from water-borne algae.


We sit here on this forum "discussing" the topic "Global Warming: Just the FACTS, Please" and all I see is the same merry-go-round. I dont see any hard data, just a lot of noise.

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#29
In reply to #27

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 5:03 PM

Aqua Doc, thanks for the valuable input.

Two thoughts:

  • I am not the expert but from what I have read (I'll try to remember the source since it was credible but I can't remember it right now!), the algae in the oceans are declining in population (or density) since the ocean waters are warming. Thus, their contribution to CO2 reduction is diminishing.
  • I agree with you that some contributors have not focused on the quantitative facts with regard to the topic; that's forgivable, in my mind, so long as it does not detract from the overall intent of the discussion. But, I do want to say that I have learned much from those who have contributed here. And, from what I have learned, I will be assessing water vapor as a green house gas, its sources and application, and impact on global warming.

Please, everyone, share this blog with others, provide more input and let's build more agreement about the common principles and practical purpose of our efforts.

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#44
In reply to #29

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/13/2007 3:48 AM

I'm pretty certain this is not what you meant, but the way this was written could be read to mean that the algae themselves increased global warming. When they are healthy, the alga's contribution is to absorb carbon from the atmosphere, when they die and decay, much of that carbon is released. So this process is contributing to global warming. You are right that heating of the oceans is reducing the level of the algae, but lack of iron, due largely to (man's) coastal developments, has so far been a more significant issue - as evidenced by the temporary reversal of this trend following the eruption of Mt Pinatubo.

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#61
In reply to #27

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/14/2007 6:00 PM

In a sense you are right and in a sense you are wrong. I agree that it may seem arrogant to think that we humans are the primary cause of "global warming", but I don't think for a minute that our actions are not "all important". It's just a question of what makes them important. What we do to mitigate our impact on the planet is not important to the planet. A much greater force than us is in charge of the ultimate destiny of this planet so our effect on it will ultimately not be all that significant. On the other hand, how we react with regard to our attitudes toward one another is of tremendous importance. In point of fact we (humans) are the most significant element of this planets existence. The current crisis, whether or not it is real or imagined, is not as significant as what effect it has on our growth and development as a society and our ability to understand and accomodate one another. We are our biggest problem. Instead of focusing on what our own individual desires and needs are, and whether I am right or the other guy, maybe we all need to recognize that no matter what we think we know, since we are human, we could be wrong and be prepared to admit it. I could be wrong about this, but I don't think so, since I didn't make it up and it comes from a very reliable source. That said, in the face of sufficient evidence to the contrary, I would be willing to change my mind. The evidence would need to be very compelling unlike that which I have seen to date regarding the assertion that we are responsible for "global warming" or that it's occurence will even be as catastrophic as is claimed.

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#62
In reply to #61

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/15/2007 8:06 AM

The book says that man was given dominion over the animals. That also means both power and responsibility. On that basis, there is every reason assume that mankind can totally affect the outcome for both his own species and that of the animals. We have seen man deliberately acquire huge destructive power in this respect with modern weaponry (atomic bombs). That must mean that it is by no means arrogant to assume that we could be exercising similar power unintentionally. I personally think it is more arrogant to imagine that we can do as we please on this earth without considering the effects.

Regarding the globe itself - apart from the plants, the animals' and our own importance in the matter, we have no reason to attribute any particular climatic preferences.

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#124
In reply to #27

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

11/21/2007 9:39 PM

I agree with you and dont see any hard data on global warming jet, from so called scientist either. just a lot of noise from NASA, from Bill Nie, the MIT professor, the misinformed reporters and Al Gore even.

Some One may be apointed as scientific, but may have a mixup mind to emit wrong hipothesis even, as that green house effect mite on global warming.

Just the Facts, Please!....is an inteligent inquire.

Find it in next facts:

WORLDISGREEN.COM

BUSSINESS STRATEGY AND SUSTAINABILITY

JOSE MA JIMENEZ R

SEPT 3, 2007

GREEN HOUSE EFFECT IS FALSE

IT IS A TRICKY SENTENCE THAT PETROLEUM GUYS WANT US TO BELIVE IN, TO CONFUSE EVERY BODY

- IT IS A CRAISY IDEA to send satelite MIRRORS to BLIND AND REDUCE incoming solar energy to avoid climate change -due to a mitic green house effect-.... Sun has never been harmfull to Earth....... Sun Radiation is in a perfect Thermal Equilibrium with Earth ever since. is`nt it so?............ we Humans are the danger to earth..

REAL CAUSES:

Real causes are down here, where HUGE amounts of waisted heat from more than 6 billions tons of hot gases -per year- are generated while burning fuels -in motor vehicles, water heaters, boilers, thermoelectric generators, driers, ranges, ovens, etc-. We dont have to be scientist to understand a math equation, showing that the problem results from the extra added heat to atmosphere:

IR sun energy + extra waisted heat from burning fuels = atmosphere overheating

= more evaporation = denser clouds = flooding storms = polar deice = actual kaoz

- Do you know what happen now that petroleum XX century is gone and Solar XXI century will replace fuels-WITH FREE AND CLEAN NATURAL ENERGY?- ......very simple.....the depleted AND EXPENSIVE petroleum will go down to 1 dollar per barrel and that will crack petroleum industry....... See? ...ENERGY will be free then, and peaple will save money to buy many thing else -as a free-maintance electric car ----and so on----- politically impossible?....IT SEEM LIKE FICTION MOVIE….....he, he,he

TWO SOLUTIONS:

1. Urge to replace all combustion devices, equipments and engines -WITH SOLAR AND ELECTRIC POWERED ONES-.

2. As well as urgent is to reforest the world with billions of trees – they are magic factories that will clean air from CO2, by:

Sucking CO2 + Absorbing solar UV and solar heat = to return us pure and fresh OXIGEN -instead-

Trees never heat the air -so- the craisy green house effect does not happen -that's a lie-

True is, we are cooking our self's in this global pot, due to PETRO effect -nothing else-

HOW YOU CAN HELP? :

- I urge any body who has responsability of enviromental care and have funds -you must support any projects where products (vehicles or equipments) pursue this change over -to a new solar and electric eco-culture-.

-I urge Presidents all -to issue compulsory regulations to stop using any apparatus, device or engines where combustion of fuels take place -of any hidrocarbons (liquid or gas) alcohols, biofuels, carbons or hidrogen too- because all react exothermicaly generating the hot gases that over-heat the air -depleting oxigen O2 and ozone O3 as well while they burn to CO2 -which ixcess is getting a letal concentration level, too-.

  • Now, I hope you understand it better -the real global warming problem- & communicate it to all your friends -what is going on- to become more that GREEN peaple -but ECOLOGY ORIENTE PEAPLE, co-responsible- don't relay on heaven help, only. PLEASE STOP BURNIG FUELS guys.

jmjr, Senior Chem. Eng, MS from UMass,

Zapopan, jal. Mexico

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#128
In reply to #27

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

03/06/2008 8:29 AM

Good Comment. I agree with your initial statements.

I don't know if you have ever heard of John Coleman. He used to be a TV Weatherman here in Chicago. I heard him on the radio yesterday talking about Global Warming and CO2. He basically said that Al Gore should be arrested and charged with fraud for selling Carbon Credits, when he clearly knows that Global Warming is a hoax.

Here is a site that link's to John Coleman's original comments about the Global Warming Hoax.

http://icecap.us/index.php/go/joes-blog/comments_about_global_warming/

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#129
In reply to #128

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

03/06/2008 9:49 AM

Sure I've heard of John Coleman. Because he is so vociferous, I've even read some of his stuff. I failed to find a shred of content - but that may be because I've failed to find his serious work.

Like most of your other doubters, his disbelief seems to be based on a misunderstanding of the caution of some of the serious specialists in the field. If a scientist says "you can't base your theory on that", or even "you don't know what you are talking about", it does not necessarily mean that he/she disagrees with all your conclusions; unfortunately, few scientists are sufficiently media-savvy (or maybe few are given enough space) to state what conclusions they do regard as justified in the midst of such discussion.
On this subject, the most common cause of miscomprehension appears to be the routine objection of scientists to statements such as "man's emissin of CO2 is responsible for the greenhouse effect". Mostly, these same scientists would not object if the statement was along the lines that "man is (and will be) responsible for a small proportional increase in the greenhouse effect". Unfortunately, a small proportional change is likely sufficient to caue a change so rapid that neither peoples' residence nor agriculture could adapt in time to avoid catastrophic results for the majority of the world's mamalian population.

returning to Mr. coleman - sure "he feels good" (his contnuous refrain). So also did the doubters of Jeremiah and Noah (a poor analogy, perhaps. as these gentlemen were not relying on science).

Finally, I fear I have to agree that much of carbon trading is fraudulent - but not for the reasons often given. The problems are that it is possible to sell the use of carbon that would not otherwise have been burned, and that much of what has thus far been sold due to "carbon retention" actually emits more CO2 than it absorbs.

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#3

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 7:34 AM

"there still is too much emotion and vitriol permeating the discussion"

Right on! Nothing is truly Black or White or Green, and we listen to those who claim otherwise at our peril. Our best understanding comes when we use a systems approach to obtain a complete accounting of all the "goes inta's" and all the "goes outa's".

This is tedious work and it's more fun to spout half-baked clever ideas.

Beware: The Second Law is usually against us.

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#5

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 7:52 AM

I am right there with you in all aspects. Here is my question to the forum: If you had a vessel containing the equilivant percentage of Co2 as is currently in the atmosphere and presumably causing all the problems, what would you use to "filter" out the Co2? In other words, is it possible to build the world's largest air handling device, fit it with the proper technology to extract the Co2, and begin reversing the process? Ridiculous you say? Too cost restrictive? How much are we about to spend to slow down emmissions that will have little or no impact for another 150 years? Anyway, i am curious how the forum would build the machine. Those type of comments are the most interesting thing about this forum.

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#6
In reply to #5

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 8:11 AM

"what would you use to "filter" out the Co2"

You can find a needle in a haystack, but it is better not to drop it in the hay <grin>

However, your question is valid. Closed system capture can only reduce making things worse. The open system approach you seek could potentially make things better. Most studies indicate that even if we went to net-zero anthropogenic emmissions (as opposed to Kyoto 1990 emmissions), the next century will see some significand enviromental degradation from the existing atmospheric CO2.

Improved land-use with a "CO2 capture objective" would be a possible filter.

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#30
In reply to #5

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 5:10 PM

An old lady once gave SAAB the idea of directing the exhaust flow from initial start up of a car into a storage tank and once the engine and cat had warmed up. The gas would be release into the exhaust pipe again for catalytic conversion.

http://www.trollhattansaab.net/archives/2007/01/60_little_gems.html see #57

But then again I do remember one oil exec, was band from making public statements with out a PR officer present. As a result of saying the company he worked for was looking at removing the carbon from hydrocarbons pre combustion and storing it underground.

The ones in the link below are just as good

http://news.independent.co.uk/world/science_technology/article2201598.ece

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#7

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 8:17 AM

Just a warning, politicized science has had more significant impacts to human life than global warming.

Those who read our textbooks remember Eugenics from the early 20th century.

A certain dictator eith a funny moustache and a Russian used this theory to eliminate over 20 million human beings.

If you think global warming can kill in those volumes, think again.

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#8

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 8:28 AM

It is very obvious that human activities are responsible for the majority of the CO2 released into the atmosphere in this present period. The planets history is a serious of cycles, with the levels of CO2 and O2 fluctuating (plus average temp and sea levels). The carboniferous period (Nigh on 100 million years 360 million years ago) being one when the vast forests that are now our coal fields were alive and CO2 levels had fallen to near what they are today, they then rose again in the Triassic and have fallen and risen again and again until our current period.

Now in the natural events of the earth, would the carbon that is locked into the untapped fossil fuel deposits be released through any natural processes? The answer is yes, the earth has proven this to us through the C02 locked into different rock layers, the trapped CO2 has been released and restored many times in varying quantities, but over periods of millions of years unlike the more apparent release of present.

There are many different views on climate cange, but there is excuse for destroying the earth, take a look at some of the below, links just a few I found quickly.

http://www.clearlight.com/~mhieb/WVFossils/Carboniferous_climate.html

http://pubs.usgs.gov/dds/dds-81/Intro/MonitoringData/CO2/CO2.html

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/06/how-much-of-the-recent-cosub2sub-increase-is-due-to-human-activities/

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#9
In reply to #8

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 9:44 AM

"There are many different views on climate cange, but there is excuse for destroying the earth"

Opps just got Bush whacked there I meant to write: there is no excuse for destroying the earth.

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#10
In reply to #9

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 11:07 AM

The implication of your statement being there are those who wish to destroy the earth, specifically those who disagree that the findings are definitive.

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#24
In reply to #10

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 2:34 PM

I am thinking more about the kind of ignorance that leads people to destroy of natural habits, such as the rain forests and lakes and inland seas like the Aral. Global warming is now automatically linked to human endeavors. Global warming may just be a part of the earth's natural cycle, we are still in an Ice Age (there is still Ice at the poles) and have been coming out of it for 10,000 years, before this Ice age we are told there were many before. Just like today's climate debate we have no exact answers on what caused them, however well researched, documented or acclaimed they are (which is a little bit hypocritical to what I said before about core samples and CO2). Our extent scientific experience is very short compared to the life span of the earth and life on it, that has obviously evolved and adapted to these changes and is adapting to the changes we currently make to it. I just believe as I wanted to state earlier that we should not have to rely on someone's scientific or unscientific findings of future disasters to know that the destruction we do is affecting our lives now and that of others through air quality, loss/pollution of natural habitats, or quality lifestyle (see the local Indonesians workers cleaning the sludge from a local refinery oil water separator tank (no name dropping) with nothing more than their keks (underpants) for PPE and then having to scrape it off of themselves afterwards).

To go back to the argument of just the facts, 2005 saw the most hurricanes since some unremembered date in the Atlantic/Gulf of Mexico/Caribbean Sea and CNN reported is was due to global warming, and 2006 saw the least hurricanes since another unremembered date, this was also reported by CNN as being down to global warming.

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#11
In reply to #9

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 11:38 AM

China plans to build 2200 coal fired generators between now and 2030. How do we stop them from "destroying the earth"?

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#12

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 11:41 AM

I would love to hear everyone's comments on the following report....

http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/greenhouse_data.html

I think I'll move inland

wndrtch

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#14
In reply to #12

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 12:28 PM

"I would love to hear everyone's comments on the following report...."

The scientific literature is inconclusive about the NET effect of water vapor, since it does act as a greenhouse gas, but increases also leads to more cloud cover, which can result in less solar insolation and less radiative cooling at night.


I note that the cited web-report (Monte Hieb, 2003) makes numerous claims and present lots of quantitative data relating to water vapor as a greenhouse gas, with no reference to source material. For this kind of quantitative discussion, honesty requires references to the REVIEWED scientific literature. If this article were sent to me for review, I would return it to the author, not because of its content, but because of its complete lack of references to the source material. As it stands, it should be viewed as a press release, propaganda, or worse.

From Wikipedia: A quick review of Hieb's credentials reveals that he has worked as chief engineer for the West Virginia Office of Miner's Safety. He has done some geological survey work on fossils. There are extensive links from Free Republic's website to Hieb's.

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#17
In reply to #14

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 1:09 PM

Water vapor is the most important greenhouse gas!

WATER

In a very rough approximation the following trace gases contribute to the greenhouse effect:
60% water vapor
20% carbon dioxide (CO2)
The rest (~20%) is caused by ozone (O3), nitrous oxide (N2O), methane (CH4), and several other species.

..the above was taken from

I was taught that water vapor is an essentially component of the greenhouse gas effect back in the late 60's so I am not sure where your uncertainty is derived from - unless of course you simply want to propogate that man is responsible for global warming.

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#18
In reply to #17

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 1:20 PM

FROM YOUR REFERENCE:

"It remains uncertain, though, which concentrations at which locations and at which altitudes in the troposphere will contribute the most to greenhouse warming. In addition, it is unclear how this surplus of water vapor will alter the warming process of the earth."

This is a nice reference. It has more value when it's read!

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#20
In reply to #18

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 1:57 PM

The issue is that it states that water vapor does contribute to the greenhouse gas effect....something you seemed to question.

As for the uncertainty attached to surplus water - nobody has indicated that what is being discussed is the surplus but rather that the overall contribution of water vapor to the greenhouse gas effect is substantial - something you seem to negate in your position

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#22
In reply to #20

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 2:05 PM

I have not denied the contention. I am resisting supporting any conclusions based on cherry-picking the sources. The conclusion of Your Reference:

We conclude:

Due to the so called "greenhouse effect" - caused by atmospheric trace gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2), ozone (O3), and water vapor (H2O) - infrared radiation from the earth is stored temporarily in the atmosphere. Of all these trace gases, water vapor represents the most important constituent. It contributes to the natural greenhouse warming process by approximately 60%. Water vapor amplifies the anthropogenic contribution to greenhouse warming through a positive feedback. This amplification is counteracted by the increased reflection off clouds. How these two factors combine in the real atmosphere still remains an open question.

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#32
In reply to #22

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 10:40 PM

Your initial post was:

I note that the cited web-report (Monte Hieb, 2003) makes numerous claims and present lots of quantitative data relating to water vapor as a greenhouse gas, with no reference to source material. For this kind of quantitative discussion, honesty requires references to the REVIEWED scientific literature. If this article were sent to me for review, I would return it to the author, not because of its content, but because of its complete lack of references to the source material. As it stands, it should be viewed as a press release, propaganda, or worse.

I believe that since it is a foregone conclusion that water vapor is a greenhouse gas, then I do not beliebve anyone who is referring to water vapor within the context of a greenhouse gas needs to provide any source material to prove the concept.

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#126
In reply to #14

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

01/31/2008 9:58 PM

I don't think you read very well. I counted 9 cited references to the 95% water vapor citation on Hieb's web page.

Hint: When you see a number in parentheses(4)...

(4) Look at the bottom of the page.

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#127
In reply to #126

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/01/2008 8:23 AM

fwes did say relevant reviewed papers.
But that is not all - the statements appear to be a misinterpretation of the referenced material. Reference 4c gives the absorption contribution "in the troposphere" as 95% - but that is not the same as the contribution "to the troposphere", which includes the effects of reflection and of interactions (presumably mainly radiative?) with the stratosphere. Reference 4c also apparently gives an overall contribution for water vapour and droplets that is closer to 50% (figure D1).

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#16
In reply to #12

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 1:03 PM

Finally a page which presents data in a pragmatic way!!

As a geoscientist I have been concerned about the way climate scientists have propogated their gloom and doom scenarios without a proper scientific approach. From what I have seen to date, most of those climate models that are predicting continued global warming have been derived by working back from today's observations and developing models that will "predict" what we observe today and hence creating a sense of legitimacy with the predictions.

While I do beleive that as "earthlings" we owe it to ourselves and future generations to generate a minimum amount of pollution along with a minimal optimal rate of use of resources and as such we should look towards using alternative fuels etc. However does this mean the issue should be politicized as it has been with the Kyoto protocol? An emphatic no!!

The drive to reduce our overall pollution should be focused on pragmatic targets and not the mumbo jumbo that is associated with carbon trading. It should be done so as not to severly impact the economic activity of countries. Finally every nation has to be involved with striving to reduce pollution - especially the populous ones such as Indai and China. Without them, the burden on the rest of the world is unfair.

As for moving inland? Heck simply buy and live on one of those "houseboats" you see in Seatlle and Vancouver!!! You'll never be flooded out!!!

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#19
In reply to #16

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 1:40 PM

"most of those climate models that are predicting continued global warming have been derived by working back from today's observations and developing models that will "predict" what we observe today and hence creating a sense of legitimacy with the predictions."

A slight correction: the models are derived (tuned) to start in the distant past an to predict what we have OBSERVED in the last century of two.

Perhaps you could do a bit of homework to understand the care that is taken by the climate scientists, taken because they understand all to well the consequencesfo the uncertainties, with which they must deal.

Most physical scientists are significantly underpaid, considering their skill and training levels. Their integrity is very valuable to them. This does not mean that they don't make mistakes, some of them serious. One of their mistakes is that they chose basic research to advance science, rather than going for the big oil $$$.

I believe that you might feel better about their efforts if you took the time to read a technical book on the subject. One that I like is "Hard Choices: Climate Change in Canada".

By the way, are you an Oil geoscientist? I am not a climate scientist. I am a mathematician who has done extensive research in short-term weather forecasting. The knowledge I have about climate change has come through extra-ciricular reading, doing my homework!

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#25
In reply to #19

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 2:49 PM

Your comment supports my position that the present observations are used to manipulate historic data in order to arrive at what we see today. The word"tuned" means manipulate to ensure the expected outcome is realized (today's climate). Thank you for supporting my theory!!

As for what we observed in the last century or two - tell me who made the observations? where were they recorded? How many measurements were made? What are today's measurements like at those locations (must be time and date specific) ? My point here is that we are relying on historical information from a time when the accuracy is suspect and the likelihood those measurements might have been taken at different times of the day and days of the year. Certainly today we can continuously monitor temperature, precipitation, etc however when we compatre them with data hundreds of years old, well from a Scientific perspective they are not the same. I guess the climate scientists have to "fine tune" that data in order to rely on it??

I am not questioniong the care of scientists in doing their work but rather I am questioning the assumptions underlying their forecasts and the tendency to accept thier forecasts as a valid prediction on the future of this planet.

It doesn't matter what type of modelling you use, be it geological, economical, financial, or climate - models are simply one step in the process to TRY to predict an outcome in the future. The value of that prediction is found within the accuracies of the assumptions built into the forecast. Unlike a mathematical prediction, climate and other forecasts are based on trying to use historically data to predict the future - something that is very difficulot to achieve. Generally forecasts miss their mark because something was either omitted from the formulae or the assumptions underlying the forecast turned out to be inaccurate.

The fact physical scientists are underpaid bears no weight in the debate nor does it bear any weight in assessing their work. To suggest that because they are underpaid and hence do their work "for the love of it" in no way supports the accuracy or the relevancy of the methods used.

For the record my background is in mining and not oil - but again that is irrelevant unless you feel that my views would be diminshed if I were employed in the oil industry. If that is what you are suggesting, then you are grabbing at straws.

I would suggest you continue to do your homework and when some scientist (such as Mann et al) comes out with a prediction or conclusion, as a scientist question their results rather than accept them. The tree ring study that Mann et all carried out has since been debunked by closer scrutiny of their data. Furthermore, the President of the American Statistical Association has alos staed that the conclusions by Mann et al are not supported by statistical evaluation.

In the Mann study, certain high values from the past were omitted as they were considered to be outliers. This was a convenient step as including those measurements would have resulted in different results.

This happens in forecasts all the time and is only one factor that can have a significant impact on the results.

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#94
In reply to #16

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

06/26/2007 12:14 PM

Who finances the anti-global warming crusaders?

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#95
In reply to #94

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

06/27/2007 1:46 AM

And who stands to profit?

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#97
In reply to #94

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

06/27/2007 12:31 PM

Nobody...however if I am wrong, please point me to the person so I can collect my stipend for arguing against man-made CO2 as the source of global warming!!

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#43
In reply to #12

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/12/2007 11:49 PM

The only sure thing is Y2K.

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#76
In reply to #12

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

03/10/2007 9:04 AM

Hello. Man made global warming is all B.S. There is NO such thing, it all began in the eighties when the the Prime Minister of GB was in dispute with our coalminers who had led this nation into ruin with their strikes and constant problems over working conditions, as sponsored by the communist party.The oil prices were soaring due to the troubles in the middle east, and Mrs Thatch was very pro nuclear generation. So when she heard about the possible effects of Co2 being a threat to the climate it was a gift she could not refuse to exploit. The MITH of global warming was born into an industry that now in order to keep its self alive tells many lies.

We are being showered with useless proper-gander, utter nonsense.

The sun is what really give rise to the major climate changes, the number and magnitude of the sun spots is the force driving our planet.

If anything we will all end up with a new ice age in the next hundred years.

The politics of climate change are all geared to the generation of wealth for a few and disaster for the rest of us. The taxes raised in the name of protecting our future will be used to control our future through wars and ever more fears about some new catastrophic disaster just around the next corner.

Industry is now so taken up with the fact that it can further exploit us and our new found ignorance, that it will stir up the already muddy waters in order to increase its profits even further. We all lose by this uninformed debate where only the big mouths seem able to score points. Again I say you are being exploited by a LIE. Don't die of ignorance. Get up and expose these morons.

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#77
In reply to #76

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

03/10/2007 12:18 PM

Hi Brainwave.

Your history of this is somewhat inaccurate. CO2-driven global warming was being seriously propounded during the 1960's*, and graphs produced of expected temperature rise versus CO2 production levels were produced - albeit with loads of cautionary statements, as befits serious scientists. The fact that it was convenient for Lady Bracknell-Thatcher is neither here nor there - you may well take the view that politicians' views on theories have nothing to do with the theories' merits, and everything to do with their other agenda, but that doesn't mean that a politician's support means a theory is invalid. Returning to global warming and the possibility of a new ice age in the relatively near future: since the 1960s, warming has been predicted primarily on the basis of CO2-driven effects; side-effects of such warming causing instabilities that could trigger an ice-age has also been regarded as a serious possibility for more-or-less the same period, although the 100-year time-frame seems rather too short time-term, unless there are additional triggers such as extreme volcanic eruptions (exceeding any in the last 50000 years), a major asteroid impact, or all-out nuclear war (though I have some doubts that this last would be sufficient).

As either extreme warming or a new ice age is highly undesirable (at least as far as humanity is concerned), it really makes no difference which outcome is the more probable.

So far as I know, all the other theories that explain global warming were cobbled up after the fact, and have signally failed to predict any trend whatsoever. The global warming theories based on man's oxidation of carbon have proved predictive to an accuracy that has surprised their proponents - but this surprise is because they recognise the potential causes for variability, not because they have abandoned the basic theory.

BTW, did your informants mention that the present level of sunspot activity is nothing exceptional - but that the rate of rise in global temperatures and melting of icecaps is, so far as we know, totally unprecedented?

I can agree that man-induced global warming is not proved absolutely. But calling it "utter nonsense" when you haven't even looked into the origins and development of the theory suggests either that you suffer extreme prejudice or have been severely misinformed.

Given the timing of your contribution, and your apparent GB slant, I suspect that you have been watching a much-hyped contribution on channel4, but without the background to recognise the distortions that dominated its propaganda.

As you say, don't die of ignorance. Taking unnecessary action (reducing carbon usage) to avert something that might not happen is not going to kill you.** However, if human CO2 would cause either excessive warming or a new ice age (or more likely in the second case, both in succession), it will kill a very large part of the human population, both directly and indirectly as a result of mass migrations. If the problem turns out to be extreme warming, you and your successors in the UK are likely to escape the worst of the direct effects - but you couldn't hide from the effects of the economic and political instability that would result.

Good luck in your search for truth.

Fyz

*You may say that the fact that I can remember them (the 1960s) means that I wasn't really there - and that's true of many of the more adventurous aspects (aah).
BTW, I think that the astronomer Fred Hoyle was the among first to suggest that global warming might trigger an ice age.

**You say that only the big mouths seem able to score points - and yet you repeat "don't die of ignorance" to argue we should ignore the possibility of global warming - could this suggest that your own critical ear may have temporarily been deafened by the volume of the anti-CO2 propaganda.

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#96
In reply to #77

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

06/27/2007 12:29 PM

Hello Physicist

Your information you posted is somewhat misleading. Yes the greenhouse gas effect was certainly being taught in the 1960's but it certainly was not focused on CO2 to the extent the current subject is being propounded. Scientistds have known for quite sometime our atmosphere has a property that allows it to capture the energy from the sun and retain it to support life on this planet. As for the graphs that were used to predict rising temperatures, that alone is not sufficient scientific proff that there is a cause and result relationship between the two measurements. As a scientist you should know better.

When you really get into the so called science that supposedly supports the theory that man-made CO2 is the primary cause for the currrent warming of global temperatures, you find that the main ingredient are the climate models that appear to predict where temperatures will be. This certainly is no Quae Erata Demonstratum - at least not from the rigurous scientific process that was instilled in me as an undergraduate in engineering.

The truth of the matter is that the number of different parameters that interact with one another is so large that it is virtually impossible to say with any degree of scientific certainty that man made CO2 is the driving cause for global warming. Remember, the group that has been writing the reports with increasing emphasis on man generated CO2 does not accurately to any extent reflect the full scientific spectrum needed to arrive at such a conclusion. The InterGovernmental Panel on Climate Change consists of members of the World Meteorological Organization (aka weathermen) and scientists appointed by the UN. While I could go into great detail about the bias that exists in the UN towards the developed nations, which could have a direct impact on the issue in areas such as the Kyoto Protocol, such a discussion is better saved until a later date. It is sufficient to say that based on the make-up of the panel, any reports that it issues do not fully reflect the entire scientific community.

People tend to believe that if a relationship between or amongst parameters reflects a trend, then that is sufficient evidence to say that there is proof that trend is accurate and exists. A trend is only the forst step in determining a theory and much more needs to be done to prove the theory. This important process appears to be missing and when investigators such as Mann et al try to do that, the theorists who back the issue point to such studies as proof but fail to recognize the shortcomings when those studies are shown to be faulty as is the case with the tree ring studies. My perspective is that when people act in this way, the argument is no longer a scientific one but rather one being driven simply by emotion.

"The global warming theories based on man's oxidation of carbon have proved predictive to an accuracy that has surprised their proponents - but this surprise is because they recognise the potential causes for variability, not because they have abandoned the basic theory"

What has been predictive is that increasing CO2 is related to increased temperatures. What has not been proven is that the increase in CO2 levels is entirely or mainly arrtibutable to man generated CO2 - it's an assumption in the model. In addition what hasn't been proven is the relationship of increased radiation from the sun has on increased temperatures, not to mention the role of increased water vapour in the atmosphere.

As I have posted before, models are not equivalent to scientific fact - they never have been and they never will be. They are simply a means of predicitng an outcome based on a set of parameters and certain assumptions on how those parameters interact with one another.

As for the level of sunspot activity is nothing exceptional, I invite you to visit the following link which indicates that since 1944, sunspot activity has been higher than at any time during thr previous 8,000 years. http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/sunspot_record_041027.html

This is hardly support to yout contnetion that sunspot activity is nothing exceptional.

Recent studies have shown that other planets and moons in our system have shown temperature increases in the last 20 years. My statement to you is that if man made CO2 is responsbile for a rise in temperatures on earth, what is the reason for a rise in temperatures on these other planets (even pluto has exhibited an increase of close to half a degree).

Finally, a recent report has suggested that the melting of snow and ice on Mt. Kilamanjaro is morelikley cause by sun radiation and not increased atmosphereic CO2. In addition, snowfields and glaciers at the 19,000 foot level in Peru have been melting at rapid rates and certainly this cannot be attributed to higher atmospheric temperatures but rather to increases in solar radiation.

I lean towards the utter nonsence side as opposed to scientific side in this whole issue. This isn't to say that global warming doesn't exist because clearly we can make observation that it does and that this has been happening since the continental glacier first stared to receed. Where is draw a very thick lin ein the sand is to say that man generated CO2 is the primc factor behind global warming. There is too much scientifi evidence that suggests we should be looking well beyond the CO2 emissions for a more substantive cause to the problem.

If I can put the current situation into another context, is for argument sake, man made CO2 was the casue for global warming. And if for argument sake that if we curtail our CO2 emissions, we are able to get the temperatures down to their more acceptable levels, this would mean that we have then conqured the ability to control our climate. How reasonable is that? Not at all!!!

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#99
In reply to #96

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

06/27/2007 5:45 PM

I find it hard to decide if you are relating usable information or spreading propaganda. Your discussion is filled with "a recent report", "recent study", etc., with no references to REFEREE'd literature. You may not be a hired gun, but there are many out there and you may be inadvertently spreading their theology.

By the way, almost any automated remote measuring system converts voltages to the units of interest, and the underlying assumptions in these conversions can be argued and debated ad nauseam. Similar to the attacks that are made on the models. Do we conclude that no measurement is valid? I find your "question authority" approach does not leave much ground for further intellectual discussion. If we won't accept inputs from the mainstream authorities, where do we turn for our facts? Without facts, this discussion becomes akin to mediaeval theology. Fun but rather unproductive.

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#104
In reply to #96

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

07/10/2007 12:29 PM

FWES covers the generality, albeit more forcefully than I would choose. I would add three points:

1) "Not CO2 in the 1960s". You claim that my information was misleading. But you don't say where you get your information from. The people I was listening to (at a series of lectures given at NPL, Teddington in 1964-5) were talking primarily about CO2, almost (not totally) to the exclusion of other contributions. There were other issues, mostly publicised later than the 1960s, for example regarding fluoro-chloro-hydrocarbons contributing to ozone destruction, where CO2 was not regarded as so important. Other greenhouse gases were also addressed at various times, mainly because they were cheaper and easier to correct (pro-rata for the benefit) than CO2, and therefore worth addressing first; however, that didn't mean that the people proposing this action were unconcerned aout CO2 - quite the reverse in most cases.

2) The magnitude of the temperature rises on this planet are disproportionately high compared with those on the other planets. That suggests that, although sunspot activity could be a contributor, you need an explanation for the differences. The only reasonable one that I am aware of is increases in CO2-induced warming. If you can point me to numerically-based reasoned data on this topic I would be happy to consider it.

3) In science, nothing is ever conclusively proved. But graphs, data and correlation with models are the best and only tools we have. When these align, as scientists we consider the case is provisionally proved to some degree of satisfaction. So far as I can judge, that is the present situation for CO2 induced gloal warming - a probability in the order of 90% that it is the major cause of the warming we are seeing. More important than that, however, is the 80+% probability a) that we have not reached equilibrum for the present levels, and b) further increases will lead to further rises of proportionate or greater magnitude than those we have already seen.
If you regard that as unscientific, so be it - that would crucify everything from Copernican astronomy through Newtonian mechanics to Einstein's theories.
My feeling, however, is that this is unsupported invective intended to make your case look more convincing. Saying this is against my normal practice, as I generally try to be insensitive to personal comments on "being misleading", "being unscientific" etc.
But you are a repeat offender, and need to understand that this is no way to pursue your case if your intention is to convince serious readers of anything.

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#107
In reply to #104

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

07/10/2007 3:07 PM

I indicated your information was somewhat misleading. Yes there were discussions in the 60's (some of which I attended, including university courses which dealt with the subject), but I reiterate, those discussions were not held with the ferver that today's alarmists are using to propogate their message.

Given the distruction of the ozone layer as exhibited by the holes that have been measure above both poles, one can't help but wonder what role those holes are playing in the rapid melting of the ice sheets and if the rise in CO2 in the atmosphere is getting a bum rap because of the distruction of the ozone layers.

I disagree with your contention that the magnitude of the temperature rises on earth are diproportionately high compared to other planets. For Pluto to exhibit a 0.5 degree rise is remarkable given its distance from the sun. other planets (and and associated moons) have exhibited higher temperature rises over the same period.

I beleive that the reduction of Ice on Kilimanjaro as well as the substantial shrinking of the Chacaltaya Glacier (eleve 17,250) suggests the melting cannot be attributed to an increase in atmosphereic temperatures but more likely to an increase in direct radiation from the sun.

Recently studies undertaken on Mt. Kilimanjaro arrived at the same conclusion.

I disagree that graphs and data that correlate with models is sufficent proof for us to conclude anything. A fundamental concept of science is correlation does not prove causality. Therein lies the purpose for my being against blaming global warming on man-induced CO2 enrichment of the atmosphere. There are too many exterior issues such as temperature increases on other planets, geological history that includes past glacial periods etc. Also I do not believe that IPCC truly represents all scientific backgrounds - given that you either have to be appointed by the UN or belong to the WMO in order to participate in their studies.

Having taken numerous statistics courses, I simply do not beliueve the socalled 90% probability simply because it is based on certain assumptions that have been built into the models.

My position is that the science behind man generated CO2 as being the major cause for a rise in global temperatures simply has not been proven and is based on models that have assumptions built into them that have not been proven. The entire process involving our climate is so insideous that in my estimate it is virtually impossible for anyone to scientifically pin the cause for global warming onto one variable - man made CO2.

Instead of attacking a person's credibility, provide proof from your end to support your arguments. You have failed miserably to do so and continiue to push the agenda of the alarmists without due scientific process being followed.

As long as there is emperical evidence to suggest something else may be at play in causing the increase in temperatures around the world, as scientists we should be examining all potential causes for what we are observing today before we come to any conclusion - instead many, such as yourself have been adversely influenced by the proclamations made by meterologists and political appointees 0 not really what I would say is a credible source of scientifi fact.

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#109
In reply to #107

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

07/31/2007 10:59 AM

First, I have not intentionally made any personal attacks. If you think I have, please tell me where and I will endeavour to apologise. In the meantime, I regard your assertion that I did so as a personal attack on your part.

Responding to some of your points:

The 60s discussions I attended were along the lines "if this theory is correct - and we need more evidence at this stage - we are heading for severe problems in the future unless we change our behaviour. We have cause for concern, and we need to collect the following data to assess the significance. There is also the possibility that the warming effects will trigger instabilities and cause an ice age after relatively small period of warming. More data is needed here as well". Some of those involved in the 60s are still active, and their position appears to be that the data that has been accumulated since then is more than sufficient to justify precautionary action.

I cannot see any physical reason why ozone holes should have significant direct effect on the ice caps. The energy involved in the UV is relatively small (particularly if you include the effect of the angle of incidence at the poles), and it would appear that the major effects at the poles have to be due to atmospheric temperature. In any case, so far as I know the south polar ice cap (where the ozone hole was more severe) does not appear to be melting. In addition, the modeling that you are attacking has included both minimum and maximum estimates for this contribution.

Regarding Pluto, the orbit is highly elliptical, and it has been approaching the sun over recent years, so some degree of warming is to be expected. In practice, the measured warming has been less than might be expected based purely on its distance from the sun, and this has been attributed to the stabilising effect of the latent heat of methane. There are additional problems with the measurement of the temperature of Pluto - because its surface is so different from a black body, the estimates very considerably, and the time-variation of the atmosphere (composition and thickness not accurately known) mean that even comparative measurements are not very precise; I understand that this uncertainty is not large enough to modify the above arguments, but I am not expert enough to judge for myself.

Kilimanjaro and Chacaltaya: As glaciers are highly reflective, I would find it surprising if percentile variations in local insolation dominated over atmospheric temperature changes. Please provide a reference to this work.

"Correlation proves nothing". That is saying that nothing is provable, which is of course true. Correlation with one theory and the absence of correlation with others is an indication that the correlated theory is more likely to be accurate. I think I've explained why the correlations with Pluto's temperature turn out to be anticorellations once known factors are included - and the community has searched for (and postulated) reasons why this anicorrelation is not additional evidence for the existing theories, which is somewhat in contradiction to your apparent belief of "bias"*. The position is that the active community has assessed the probability of CO2 being a major factor as 90% - by comparing the correlations with those to all known models. If an alternative model is presented that starts to show comparable correlations, here are many of those workers who will be only too happy to try to improve that competitive model. Of course, temperature correlation isn't the only basis for this model - much of it is based on physics models that have been established in other areas; by this I mean standard thermal models and measurements that are used for all sorts of other applications.
*Which I regard as a slur on the integrity of a community of workers who have no apparent vested interest in demonstrating that CO2 causes global warming. In fact, if someone of them produced a convincing model that showed other effects, it would be suffcicent to make (or remake) their very considerable reputations

It seems to me that the standard of demonstration you are demanding for CO2 is such that no non-repeatable experiment could ever achieve. At the same time, my impression is that you are postulating alternative theories with minimal examination (e.g. Pluto's warming being related). Obviously, CO2 may not be the entire story; on the other hand, I would regard it as folly of the highest order to take no action on the basis that the case for CO2 being a major contribution is "unproved". I don't actually beleve that to be your intention; unfortunately, however, what will come over to most readers of your contributions is the impression that maybe the whole thing is a trumped-up case by unspecified enemies of the oil industry.

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#110
In reply to #109

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

08/01/2007 8:41 PM

The following quote taken from your post hardly suggests you did not call into question my credibility:

"this is unsupported invective intended to make your case look more convincing"

..enough said!

The discussions that took place in the sixties (yes I was there and studying at university in the late 60's) did identify the greenhouse effect and yes there were concerns stated that increases in atmospheric CO2 might lead to higher temperatures etc. At that time they did not know the intricacies relating to the inter-dependence of the many factors that control our climate and I suggest that today we still do not have a complete handle on those interdependencies. Simply because some scientists voiced a concern and 40 years later we appear to be observing those concerns does not prove the relationship.

Yes data has been accumulated, however scientists cannot be certain it determines what factors played a role in arriving at today's climate change. As I have said before, simply because a model predicts what we see today, does not mean that what we see arrived due to the factors and assumptions embedded into the model.

The issue regarding ozone depletion is simple - the holes exist above both poles, in the summer months the respective poles of the earth tilt towards the sun - when this happens more UV radiation gets through to the earth and could be a major reason why the Arctic ice is melting at the rate it is being reported. Your comment that the major effects at the poles have to do with atmospheric temperatures is without foundation. Contrary to your assertion that the south polar ice cap is not melting, evidence suggests otherwise and a simple search of the Internet will show you just that.

It isn't important that the models include min and max estimates - what is important is to what significance does the model attribute to those measurements and therein lies the weakness of all models - who determines the validity of the assumptions that are built into them?

I gave Pluto as one example - other examples include the ice caps on Mars which are melting, the increase in size of the Great Red Spot on Jupiter, and Neptune's moon, Triton has heated up significantly since the first fly-by in 1989. The only thing all of these points have in common with the earth is the sun.

An article published in October in the Proceedings of the Royal Society -- the mathematical, physical sciences and engineering journal of the Royal Society of London by Henrik Svensmark of the Danish National Space Center suggests strongly that the sun and stars can explain most of the higher temperatures we see today.

Habibullah Abdussamatov of the Pulkovo Astronomical Observatory in St. Petersburg, Sami Solanki of the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Germany, Sallie Baliunas and Willie Soon of the Solar and Stellar Physics Division of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and a host of the rest of the world's leading solar scientists are all convinced that the warming of recent years is not unusual and that nearly all the warming in the past 150 years can be attributed to the sun.

Solar scientists from Iowa to Siberia have overlaid the last several warm periods on our planet with known variations in our sun's activity and found, according to Mr. Solanki, "a near-perfect match."

Mr. Soon showed as long ago as the mid-1990s that the depth of the Little Ice Age -- the coldest period in the northern hemisphere in the past 1,500 years -- corresponded perfectly with a solar event known as the Maunder Minimum. For nearly seven decades there was virtually no sunspot activity. Our sun was particular quiet. And for those 60 to 70 years, the northern half of our globe, at least, was in a deep freeze.

With regards to Kilimanjaro, satellites have been measuring atmospheric temperatures there between 1000 and 8000 meters since 1979 and they show no tropospheric warming in that area. As for Chacaltaya, it is located in the southern atmosphere and the primary temperature increase are located in the Northern Atmosphere (supporting the argument that the increases are due to man generated CO2 since the Northern atmosphere is where the developed nations are located and). On top of that (pardon the pun) the glacier is at over 18,000 feet above sea level and the small rise in atmospheric temperatures is not enough to account for the melting of the ice at that elevation. Increased radiation from the sun is more plausible. - please do a Google search to find the back-up on this and don't leave it to me to point you in the direction - unless of course you really are not interested in finding out the truth behind today's climate changes.

The term Correlation proves nothing does not equate to that nothing is provable. Things can be proved and things can be postulated. If you really looked into another valid scientific perspective to why global climate is changing, you would see that those who postulate the man-made CO2 accumulation as the primary cause for global change to be unscientific.

As I have posted before, the scientific community is NOT together on this issue by any means. The 90% factor was arrived at by the IPPC to which membership is quite restricted - you are either a member of the World Meteorological Organization or have been appointed by the UN to be a member. Hardly what I would call a good cross section of the appropriate scientific community.

To end, models are only tools with which to attempt to observe data. They are not and should not be used to draw conclusions.

The standard I am looking for is one that proves man made CO2 is at the root cause of global change. In other words proof that if man was not on this planet, the global change would not occur. This is how the Greenhouse "side is presenting their argument - that they are 90% confident that man made CO2 is to blame.

It really doesn't take much time to evaluate the argument from the perspective of the "Deniers". Anybody with a reasonable background in science would quickly realize that there are valid arguments to be made to suggest a lot more is at play here than man made CO2 and consequently the role attributed to man made CO2 by the climatologists is vastly overstated.

The action I would suggest be taken is more technology to allow us to reduce all pollution, and technology that will allow us to accommodate climate change as it appears to be happening. If all the resources are focused on reducing CO2 emissions and it turns out that the man made CO2 emissions are not that significant in climate change, then we have effectively placed all of our eggs into one basket.

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#111
In reply to #110

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

08/02/2007 8:34 PM

Your last paragraph is the summary of what I hope to see. The Global Warming debate is a good thing if it jolts humanity into ensuring we leave a decent legacy for those who must follow us on this planet. Repairing polution and other degradation issues will go a long way to absorbing CO2 be it a pollutant or otherwise.

Lets have our clean air, clean water and land. Lets have have our forests back for their amenity as well as their resources including clean air. The scare is probably necessary to get any action at all, then we need focus as you have stated to get a worthwhile return on investment.

Technology is our best hope but sometimes technology doesn't get off the starting block due to cost and political constraint. The scare mongers may yet prove to be a great resource provided the funding their scare releases is channelled into beneficial technology instead of window dressing.

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#112
In reply to #110

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

08/07/2007 10:07 AM

I haven't time right now to go through many of your quotes and assertions, so I have just chosen the first that was easy to follow up. As I read it, you state that Sami Solaki is one of a group that believe "that nearly all the warming in the past 150 years can be attributed to the sun". The view of Dr. Solaki's goup (linked from Dr. Solanki's personal site - see http://www.mps.mpg.de/projects/sun-climate/glchange.html) is that between 1850 and 1990 about half the global warming was attributable to variations in the sun's activities. However, the same site indicates that, since 1975, solar variation would have contributed about .15 degrees, and other effects 0.38 degrees.
Dr. Solanki himself is quoted as follows: "based on ... team's research, the Sun can be responsible for, at most, only a small part of the warming over the last 20 to 30 years.
Just how large this role is, must still be investigated,since, according to our latest knowledge on the variations of the solar magnetic field, the significant increase in the Earth's temperature since 1980 is indeed to be ascribed to the greenhouse effect caused by carbon dioxide."

Enough said about selective (or possibly grossly out-of-date) quotations

This apparent misrepresentation may be a single isolated accident - but based on this I haven't the time to go through your other references at this point.

Over to you to check your own references, I think.

Fyz

P.S.1 We do have one area of agreement: that it would be foolish to concentrate all our efforts on CO2 to the exclusion of all other pollution and warming issues. But there appears little danger of that happening - vide for example the actions on refrigerants and aerosols.

P.S.2 I will not respond here to your view on personal comments, other than to say that anyone interested can follow back from the quotation to assess its basis for themselves.

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#113
In reply to #112

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

08/13/2007 4:32 PM

So typical of those who support the theory that man-made CO2 is the cause of climate change! - you haven't got enough time to look into alternative arguments which suggest that a great deal of other sources could very well be contributing to climate change.

Since that is your perspective - we've had enough discussion here - I'm not going to waste any more CO2 generation in trying to qualify my postion when you won't take the time to investigate them yourself..

nuff said!!

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#114
In reply to #113

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

08/13/2007 4:49 PM

"So typical of those who ..."

Have you looked in a mirror lately?

No doubt that there are many contributing factors to Global Warming, perhaps even multiple major contributors, but it is ironic that there is so much venom projected at those who advocate doing something about those factors over which we have some control.

Anthropogenic CO2 is clearly one of the major factors. We can do something about it. Any ideas on a wise way to proceed?

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#115
In reply to #114

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

08/13/2007 5:26 PM

Nowhere have I seen or read clear evidence that anthropogenic CO2 is clearly one of the major factors apart from the rubbish published by an organization whose members are either meterologists or UN appointees. Everything that is out there is tempered with "they believe" ot it is believed' yadda yadda yadda

The main publication that a lot of the theory is based upon (Mann et al) has been debunked from several sides and yet the propogation that somehow if we stop generating CO2 our climate will return to it's "norm" - whatever "norm is".

The scientific community itself agrees that the climate or rather the multiple parameters that work together to define our climate are so integrated and are not fully understood. - Yet politicians eager to jump on the wagon are willing to spend billions to fight global climate change and why? Because it is proven that man-made CO2 has caused what we see today?

What really astounds me is the number of so called scientists who readily support people like Al Gore yet don't demand scientific prudence to support his stories.

As for the Kyoto protocol - anyone who actually believes it is about climate change (or should I say "control") should read it closely - they will soon realize it is a policy that is more designed to transfer wealth from north to south than it is about stemmming GHG's!!!

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#116
In reply to #113

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

08/13/2007 5:27 PM

I've followed up several of your references, and not found anything that seriously supported your assertions. On this occasion, I followed up one of your references and found it to say the exact opposite of what you had credited it with. By referencing a source that says the opposite of what you claim it says, you have put yourself and your case in a very poor light. Under these circumstances, I am being several orders of magnitude more open-minded than yourself in saying that I will look at your input again on a case-by-case basis if-and-when you tell me that you have re-checked the material. If you can't be bothered to do this, I can reasonably draw the conclusion that either you already know that your sources won't pass muster, or you have merely selected references out of a hat in the hope that no-one will check, and there is no point in following up any of your existing assertions.

It's up to you - now you have been found to have given false data, you can either recheck and submit some of the evidence you have said supports it, or abandon the field in a way that leaves other participants thinking you have no evidence and that your case was pure disinformation. It's certainly not reasonable to expect others who have already bent over backwards to try to find value in your case (and failed) to go any further than they already have.

Fyz

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#117
In reply to #116

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

09/03/2007 6:09 AM

Having followed your last link and found it wanting, I asked you for some that you have evaluated and considered sound. Remember that I have been through some of your references in the past and found them either to be inadequate or to say the opposite of what you claimed. Mow your list starts with a second-hand articles from a newspaper which is is obviously unhelpful (some of these people have covered my work - within my unrelated area of special expertise - so I understand the pressures they are under).

Your text makes me think that you are merely trying saturation in the hope that this undermines my credibility. I've already told you that I haven't the time to go through hundreds of apparently unfiltered articles.
If you don't trust your own judgement sufficiently to sort out a couple that you can whole-heartedly recommend as supporting your case, how can you expect anyone with other things to do to follow up your suggestions (or even take you seriously)?

So, please supply a maximum of two serious source papers or articles to start with that you are confident are well-researched and support your case. They needn't necessarily be accessible on the web - I can look them up when next I'm in a technical library.

Fyz

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#118
In reply to #117

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

09/03/2007 11:51 AM

Before you strat to discount the links, take the time to read them.

The job of a scientist is to question theories to make sure they are right. If evidence is brought forward that suggests a certain theory may be incorrect or inaccurate, then the scientists should have an open mind and understand that. You seem to have the inability to do so.

You say you reveived some of my links in the past and found them "wanting" however you have failed to identify those links and to what extent they are wanting.

As for the number of links I posted last, each one of them presents possible arguments suggesting that man-made CO2 is not the driving force beind the current rise in global temperatures that we seem to be observing today. They also provide evidence that the issue of climate change is far more complex than simply pointing the finger at man-made CO2.

This has been my premise all along - that many other factors must be properly taken into accounbt when trying to understand global climate change. You call yourself a Physicist - however it would appear that is simplt wishful thinking on your part. TMost of te articles I have posted links to are not deeply scientific - they are wrriten for the average person to understand.

Continue to believe that man made CO2 is the cause for global wamring - it's your perogative to do so. It's alos your downfall as a scientist because it clearly reflects how closed your mind really is to the subject.

I can guarantee that if you read all of the artciles that I have posted links to and that after doing so you fail to understand that there are a multitude of other factors in effect that are contributing more to global climate change than man made CO2, then I have proved my point - you are closed minded and you are not a scientist.

In the end you are simply refusing to read any article that could be contradictory to your way of thinking. That is really a sad situation and your comments on here are simply ones to be ignored.

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#119
In reply to #118

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

09/03/2007 12:06 PM

That must be the most prejudiced and prejudicial reply I've read on CR4. You don['t offer to filter at all, so I have to read the lot, and "if I then don't agree with you the only possible conclusion is that I'm dishonest and/or prejudiced". And, yes, I have explained two specific cases that don't support your view, one of which referred to a worker whose known opinion remains in direct opposition to what you claimed for him.

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#120
In reply to #119

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

09/03/2007 1:10 PM

If I wanted to put all of my links onthe post, there would have been three times as amny. If you were serious about learning on what basis I have developed my position, you would find the time to review those links (an hour at most - assuming a high speed connection).

There is another point I would like to raise as well concerning the recent IPCC edict on climate change. Contrary to "popular" opinion, the papers incorporated into the studiesdo not support the resulting edict and certainly nobody in their right mind could possibly give the findings a 90% probablity of happening.

Dr. Klaus-Martin Schulte recently released his findings of his examination of the reports included in the IPCC report and reported:

Of 528 total papers on climate change, only 38 (7%) gave an explicit endorsement of the consensus. If one considers "implicit" endorsement (accepting the consensus without explicit statement), the figure rises to 45%. However, while only 32 papers (6%) reject the consensus outright, the largest category (48%) are neutral papers, refusing to either accept or reject the hypothesis. This is no "consensus."

While I would usually place a link to this information on this post, it is obvious that you are too busy or do not have the true interest of finding the truth about global warming to click on it and revies the information.

It is really difficult to take someone serious in this forum who constantly demands others provide links to posts to support their theories when you don't provide the same but rather instead you pontificate to the point of nausea.

Not all links will categorically prove or disprove a hypothesis but rather each one will contribute data. A good paper will identify both sides of the equation and will attempt to arrive at some conclusion - the fact there are two sides to the equation is important. Some reports will conclude in favour of one side, while others will conclude in favour of the other. Good exampls are the reports cited in the IPCC report which according to Schulte, certainly do not support the socalled "consensus" position that you and others are promoting.

Quite frankly I do not want your explanation of any scientific cases as I don't believe those explanations you have given in the past can stand on their own. What I want from you is to provide links to pages that support your hypothesis - nothing less will do.

Of course if you can't find any papers or reports online, it will truly reflect the valididty of your comments.

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#121
In reply to #118

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

09/03/2007 4:57 PM

That is an average of 72 seconds per article. You may be able, but I can't read anything serious that quickly.

But I've now looked at quite a few, and none of those articles presented any evidence of anything that either supports or opposes the CO2-dominant theory of global warming. One or two seemed to me to be very sound - but these were not relevant to global warming - and neither did they claim to be. Dr. Schulte's data (only a small proportion of the papers claimed CO2 was the cause of warming) is rather what you should expect - because most of the papers individually examine different aspects in some depth, and they rightly say nothing about the total effect. They are there to give proper numerical support on individual aspects so that they can be properly taken into account in the more general modelling.

Here follow some specific notes on issues covered by a few of the non-newspaper articles only (the notes are a bit sketchy due to time shortage - but give a flavour of the appropriateness of the articles to the case "that CO2 is not a major cause"):
Difficulty in predicting sunspot activity: irrelevant to the argument, because we are only looking at the historic data there to ensure it is properly taken into account in terms of its impact on the theory
The affect of solar activity on the environment (apparently accurate): the areas of principle concern for this article are the impact of flares etc on the environment in ways that affect Nasa's technology. Warming is not even mentioned, so we can't use this article to support (or deny) anything in this matter.
Similarly, the article on sunspot activity reaching a peak (apparently accurate) says nothing about the magnitude of the warming effects - again irrelevant.
Rainforest absorption (accurate partial statement taken out of context and effect misinterpreted): "As explained in the above Article 1, the Amazon rainforest is probably absorbing 2 billion tons of carbon per year" Yes, and at best the associated decomposition of fallen material was releasing the same amount again. Currently, it is believed to be releasing slightly more than it absorbs. (That one only "convinces" if you ignore half the story)
Skin cancer (broadly accurate, but irrelevant) is related to UV content of the light reaching the surface of the Earth. Yes, this is affected by solar activity. No, it is not a major cause of global warming. The cause is change in the distributions of gases that absorb UV. In any case, the solar flare side has already diminished as expected, but the warming appears to continue unabated.
I don't see that global warming having occurred in the past over "short" periods (possible as short as 10k years?) has much bearing on the current cause of warming over <100 years.
Water vapour (misapplication of partial but broadly accurate information) - yes the jury is still out as to whether changes in vapour formation could contribute as much as a quarter of the changes we are seeing; there's also the concern that the changes in water vapour may anyway be driven by the CO2 in the first instance (no-one is arguing that the total greenhouse effect of the water vapour is not significant - the issue is only the effect of changes; saying that "because CO2 only contributes a proportion of the existing* warming, it cannot be the dominant cause of changes" is simply illogical).

So, please, serious papers with weighed evidence only; then perhaps we can make progress.

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#122
In reply to #121

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

09/03/2007 6:06 PM

You sem to think that the positions of either side of the argument can be proven. My entire argument is that the topic is so complex that outright proof, and certainly the 90% confidence level asserted by IPCC cannot be proven.

The articles whose links I posted simply provide enough basis for any rational scientists to recognize that there is enough evidence out there to strongly suggest that man made CO2 is not the driving force behind global climate change. That is all they can do. Neither you nor I can prove beyond a reasonabl doubt that the respectives sides of the argument that we have taken is scientific fact.

Many of the articles do not come out and oppose the CO2 dominant therey - instead they provide information that supports the hypothesis that other important factors have not been properly taken into account in the discussion. For instance an article about the effect of cosmic radiation on the formation of clouds will not dispute the CO2 dominant theory. What it will say is that since cloud formation has an effect on climate, anything that influences the formation (or lack of) of clouds, must be taken into consideration when we assess climate change.

As for Dr. Schulte's data, while your hypothesis may have merit, it certainly does not substantiate the concept that there is consensus within the scientific community that man-made CO2 is the major cause for global warming as her data proves otherwise.

The papers in question were not, as you suggest there to give proper numerical support on individual aspects - they were papers that individually assessed climate change and which identified the parameteres that from their persepctive were the root causes of climate change. When more than 50% either out right refute man-made CO2 or fail to support the man-made CO2 theory as the cause for global warming, for the IPCC certainly cannot provide a 90% certainty to their models that tie man-made CO2 to climate change as they have stated. You really don't need to have a scientific background to arrive at such an obvious conclusion.

To ignore sunspot activity would be a failure to fully address the issue. The level of solar radiation which is tightly linked to the level of surface temperatures on the earth make it necessary to include that parameter in an modeling - but wait, since we do not have any realistic way to measure historical sunspot activity back 1,000's of years , well then they cannot be included into any modeling - but wait, that makes the model a closed system which by definition cannot be used to predict events within an open system.

UV radiation is a source of rising temperatures on the earth (black rock and dark dirst absorb it and then radiate hear back to the atmosphere). For you to suggest UV radiation is not related to global warming is simply unbelievable. The fact that scientists do not fully understand the variation of the sun's radiation over time is not a reason to discount its effect on global climate change. It wasn't until the 70's that we were able to directlt measure the radiation. Hence we do not know how it altered temperatures in the past.

Dr Sami Solanki, the director of the renowned Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Gottingen, Germany, who led a research team of Swiss and German scientists , recently said: "The Sun has been at its strongest over the past 60 years and may now be affecting global temperatures."

As for the jury being out with respect to water vapor vs CO2, - I think the jury is in and by far water vapor has a much larger influence on global warming than CO2. According to Vladimir Shaidurov of the Russian Academy of Sciences, only small changes in the atmospheric levels of water, in the form of vapour and ice crystals can contribute to significant changes to the temperature of the earth's surface, which far outweighs the effects of carbon dioxide and other gases released by human activities. Just a rise of 1% of water vapour could raise the global average temperature of Earth's surface more then 4 degrees Celsius.

I believe that you are so ingrained to your position and that your demand for scientific papers to refute the CO2 dominated theory, I put it to you, provide us with good scientific papers that wiegh the evidence as you have requested of me. Then perhaps we can have a continued discussions.

As for a paper that refutes Mann et al's theory, please read this:

http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rmckitri/research/trc.html

There are more like that one which dispute the notion of a CO2-dominated theory - all you have to do is search the net using the appropriate terms - soemthing I am sure you can do and if you are REALLY interested in learning more about both sides of the argument - it is something you can do on your own time.

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#123
In reply to #122

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

09/04/2007 4:51 PM

Please don't misrepresent my position. I don't consider the 'CO2 causes global warming theory' proved - I've already stated both my practical and my philosophical positions on that. I merely consider it the most probable explanation in the present state of knowledge, and regard action based on it as the most sensible option available.

What I am saying is that the specific articles* you gave as references (that supposedly countermanded the CO2 theory) are either irrelevant (most) to the arguments on global warming, or they are demonstrably misleading.

I see that in this latest response you repeat (among other distortions) your out-of-context quote of Solanki, which you know I have already examined - and found that his explicit statement that both his current personal opinion and that of his group are that global warming is most likely caused by CO2 emissions. I fail to understand why you have not checked this out after I let you know you have been misinformed - unless you are simply hoping that other people cannot remember, and that repetition of inaccuracies will carry the day?

If you remain determined to believe that failure to be convinced by repeated statement of a position backed up by irrelevant or distorted data is a sign of having a closed mind, there is little I can do about it. So far as I am concerned, that is now your problem. I will leave it to others to refute your (so far) apparently unsupported assertions - should they so wish.

Fyz

*Given the time I have available, I will not read the newspaper articles because they are at best second-hand distillations of the other sorts of articles you directed me to.

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#139
In reply to #116

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

03/25/2008 10:43 AM

WOW well i stll dont know whats goin on

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#98
In reply to #76

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

06/27/2007 12:58 PM

Global warming political doctrine is a ruse to offset failed and irresponsible fiscal practices by both political parties. Global warming doctrine is most advocated by the same people who have made social security funds looting and illegal immigrant entitlements a respectable endeavor. So we'll just throw money at this non-issue, voila, now its gone! No more guilt. Feel better now? You should, we averted disaster, and only with your help could we have done so. Ka-ching!

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#105
In reply to #98

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

07/10/2007 12:42 PM

Very clever-clever. And totally lacking in substance**. Global warming theories did not start life as political doctrines, but as a result of investigations into atmospheric physics. Many of the scientific advocates didn't want to believe it, and looked really hard for alternative explanations. The fact that people that you (and possibly I) dislike and despise have turned this into a political tool has no bearing (positive or negative) as to the reality of the problem. Unfortunately it is most likely a genuine problem; and in spite of their "brave words", none of the dominant political parties* has actually committed to any actions that would come near to solving it.

Fyz

*In almost any country
**In my experience, ad hominem arguments such as implied by this line of argument have the same probability of reaching a valid conclusion as tossing a weighted coin.

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#13

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 11:46 AM

Good day all. I know the issue of global warming is a touchy subject. But the global warming is being used as a political anvil on all sides. And it is so simple to resolve. The Earth has already built a filtration system to deal with high amounts of CO2 & some other green house gasses. The big problem is it is being destroyed. I am not a tree activist, but I do see this as logical. The rainforest in Brazil was the main producer of creating oxygen from CO2. Since its size reduction the CO2 content in air as risen. The air pollution level around cities with dense vegetation is less than those cities that has less vegetation. Even when there are more people per square mile.

Air pollution trends in Boston, Massachusetts (pop. 589,141)

Pollutant: Carbon Monoxide: 1.5 ppm in 2005 (it was 2.3 ppm in 2000, 6.1 ppm in 1990).
Pollutant: Nitrogen Dioxide: 0.023 ppm in 2005 (it was 0.029 ppm in 2000, 0.030 ppm in 1990).
Pollutant: Particulate Matter (PM10): 25.0 µg/m3 in 2005 (it was 24.5 µg/m3 in 2000, 26.6 µg/m3 in 1990).
Pollutant: Particulate Matter (PM2.5) Weighted Annual Mean at 3 sites: 10.9 µg/m3 in 2005 (it was 12.8 µg/m3 in 2000).
Pollutant: Sulfur Oxides Annual Mean at 4 sites: 0.0044 ppm in 2005 (it was 0.0055 ppm in 2000, 0.0101 ppm in 1990).

Air pollution trends in Mesa, Arizona (pop. 396,375)

Pollutant: Carbon Monoxide 2nd Max at 7 sites: 3.2 ppm in 2005 (it was 4.5 ppm in 2000, 6.8 ppm in 1990).
Pollutant: Nitrogen Dioxide: 0.024 ppm in 2005 (it was 0.029 ppm in 2000, 0.021 ppm in 1990).
Pollutant: Ozone 4th Max at 6 sites: 0.077 ppm in 2005 (it was 0.082 ppm in 2000, 0.080 ppm in 1990).
Pollutant: Ozone 2nd Max at 6 sites: 0.097 ppm in 2005 (it was 0.099 ppm in 2000, 0.112 ppm in 1990).
Pollutant: Particulate Matter (PM10) Weighted Annual Mean at 7 sites: 36.4 µg/m3 in 2005 (it was 44.5 µg/m3 in 2000, 43.2 µg/m3 in 1990).
Pollutant: Particulate Matter (PM2.5) Weighted Annual Mean at 3 sites: 7.5 µg/m3 in 2005 (it was 9.1 µg/m3 in 2000).
Pollutant: Sulfur Oxides: 0.0021 ppm in 2005 (it was 0.0028 ppm in 2000, 0.0033 ppm in 1990

http://www.city-data.com

Now with the high amounts of CO2 in the air other plant life around the world will start to benefit and grow faster and stronger. The Earth will balance as the environment changes. It always has for over 2billion years.

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#15
In reply to #13

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 12:58 PM

"The Earth will balance as the environment changes. It always has for over 2billion years. "

The earth will suvive, no doubt about it. During its history, most of the different species have become extinct. Many (70%) biologists believe that by the end of this century, over half of the currently living species will become extinct, due to human activites. For more discussion, contrary views, and lots of references see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extinction.

As noted, the earth may even return to an environment that is friendly to 6 billion humans (in a few million years). In the meantime, we might not pass on our seed to enjoy it.

"Whose next? Whose NEXT? WHOSE NEXT?? ..." -- Tom Lehrer

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#140
In reply to #13

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

03/25/2008 10:47 AM

Hey ppl. i need help. What do i believe? 4love1ashley@gmail.com

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#141
In reply to #140

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

03/25/2008 11:44 AM

I would work on the basis that there is a significant chance that the people assigned by the UN to examine the problem are correct. Their 'agreed' view is that the likely scenario is that, unless we take action to reduce our output of greenhouse gases, they will cause global warming at a rate that will cause extreme disruption to humanity - in which they include rises in sea levels and the failure of existing agricultural systems. No-one at the moment can be 100% certain - but their most likely scenario would lead to the extinction of all the larger mammals (including humanity) if the rate of CO2 generation continues even at current levels. However, what is certain is that it will be too late to do anything about it if we wait until we can be 100% certain (that is on the basis that their most-likely scenarios turn out to be correct).

What you yourself should do depends on your attitude to risk. If either you regard "a greater than 80% probability of catastrophe" as acceptable, or believe that the community working on this topic are (to a man) dishonest short-term self-seekers, or that they are misguided in some other way: ignore their conclusions, vote for the doubters, and continue to generate CO2. If, on the other hand, you regard them as reasonably skilled and doing the best they know how: reduce your personal CO2 output where practical, and vote for those who appear to have reasonably sensible strategies to help/persuade/(force?) the rest of use to reduce our contributions as well.
As I am more inclined to trust trained scientists with tenure than politicians and people with clear vested short-term intersts, I think you know what I will be doing. Where practical, I have also reviewed a sampling of the original work, and found it to be of the expected variable standard - which supports the working-party's conclusions. But why should you trust my judgement or neutrality just because I choose to answer your qustion here?

N.B. In answer to those who say nature will adjust: I agree, just as it did after the extinction of the majority of the dinosaurs - but I doubt its solutions would include mankind (serve us right?)

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#21

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 1:58 PM

After posting this blog, I had a chance to view the US Congress' House Science and Technology Committee meeting held on February 8, 2007. The committee members were meeting with lead contributors to the the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the UN issued report that claims there is a 90% probability that human activity is responsible for global warming (up from 66% in 2001!).

What was most interesting to me was the exchange between Congressman Dana Rohrabacher and Dr. Susan Solomon. He asked a very simple question FOUR times and she could not provide him with a simple answer. What a crying shame! Congressman Rohrabacher represents a major challenge to those who plead the case for action on global warming and is often viewed by liberals with great disdain; I may not necessarily agree with him, either, but he does play an important role as chief adversary on a matter of great import.

Unfortunately, with all of Dr. Solomon's presumed wisdom and the extensive work she and her colleagues have done on this subject, she could not muster a cogent response to his questions. Other bloggers have suggested that Dr. Solomon was treated rudely by the committee and that Congressman Rohrabacher did not provide her with sufficient time to answer the questions. I disagree; Dr. Solomon was unprepared to communicate with our legislators and as such, she was unprepared to speak to the general public in a meaningful way.

The findings and the scientific methodology may be sound but it will have little impact until the scientific leadership can communicate effectively with the broader public.

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#23
In reply to #21

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 2:13 PM

"He asked a very simple question FOUR times "

I am curious, what was the simple question?

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#26
In reply to #23

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 2:50 PM

Rohrabacher asked the co-chairwoman of the IPCC what percentage of greenhouse gases are caused naturally rather than by human beings.

You can read a synopsis of their exchange at: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,250980,00.html

I will write more about this exchange next week, once the dust has settled. Suffice to say, Dr. Solomon missed a great opportunity and was upstaged by a politician with an agenda who was far better prepared for the prescient moment than she.

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#28
In reply to #26

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 4:47 PM

"Dr. Solomon missed a great opportunity and was upstaged by a politician with an agenda who was far better prepared for the prescient moment than she"

I agree that when scientists (or anyone else) have a opportunity to state their case in a pubic forum, they should know that it is a rare opportunity, and they shouldn't be satisfied with a C- for their efforts.

This simple question is a lot like "have you stopped beating your wife", since the issue is not just how much is produced, but rather, how much is produced in excess of what can be naturally absorbed. If you only spend 30% of your budget in luxuries, and you are going bankrupt, Rohrabacher might want to emphaize the fact that 70% of your expendatures are for necessities.

Rohrabacher gets Good Press, that's why he's in politics. Nonetheless, when you go to wrestle with the hogs, you should be prepared to get muddy. Some observers claim that she tried to provide a comprehensive answer, and Rohrabacher continually interupted her. Sort of like Perry Mason demanding a one-word answer.

Based on the reference you've provided and what I have found, it sounds like Rohrabacher won this round by a rather wide margin (sigh!). But he won on style points, rather than substance. In politics, that's probably what counts.

I look forward to you continuation of this. Please note that the big kahuna here is water vapor which is the dominant greenhouse gas, but whose net contribution to global warming my well be negative, due to thermodynamic (cloud) processes. There is spirited discussion of this topic elsewhere in this post, together with an excellent link.

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#31

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 6:25 PM

There's a lot of media hype about a lot of recent evidence of catastrophic global warming but the weather man has been known to make mistakes.

No artic ice melt melt occurred in 1970.

The Milankovich climate model indicates we should be entering an ice age.

The largest source of atmospheric sulphur is an algae in the oceans - that proliferates as the temperature rises.

Rising levels of atmospheric moisture sooner or later will saturate that atmosphere and precipitate as rain or snow.

Most scientists acknowledge that mankind has existed during a mild, interglacial period that will come to an end.

So don't sell your mittens yet folks.

Bob

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#33
In reply to #31

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/09/2007 10:49 PM

Further to your post, there can only be another ice age if the polar ice cap melts. Why? Because with the large ice cover, the arctic has essentially been an arid climate. With the melting of the ice, the humidity of the arctic will increase resulting in an increase in precipitation which can then cause the accumulation of snow at a rate greater than the melting during the summer months.

Even now there is signs that the glaciers on Greenland are accumulating as are the ones in Antarctica.

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#48
In reply to #33

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/13/2007 5:41 AM

Your conclusion about the ice age is probably correct, if not for the reason you give. However, there would be massive problems long before that comes to pass - changes in plant distribution, flooding...

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#50
In reply to #48

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/13/2007 1:30 PM

I beg to differ. The changes do not have to be dramatic and I don't comprehend how floods and changes in plant distribution play a part in forecasting an ice age.

Currently the glaciers covering Greenland and the Antarctic are accumulating snow (more snow being deposited than is being melted).

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#52
In reply to #50

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/13/2007 6:03 PM

The model I am referring to is as follows (I'm not saying it is proved or correct): warming results in melting of the ice-caps, and this reduces the convective drivers for the Arctic ocean currents. Over time, these reduce dramatically, allowing the Arctic to cool again. Once the flow is very low, there is no starting condition to determine which currents should grow, so there can be a long delay before the currents can build. So the arctic freezes over, and the consequent reduction in solar heating allows the ice sheet to grow. Once the ice sheet is large enough, the ocean currents form different flows, and there is in any event more heat is needed to heat this enlarged area of ice. So the global warming has precipitated an ice age. The same process could happen at the south pole - indeed, a related process may already have started* (ocean currents are less dominant because of the Antarctic land mass, and increased humidity would result in increased snowfall)

The catastrophes that precede this are, of course, related to the initial global warming and the initial melting of the ice, rather than to the ice-age itself. Naturally, an ice-age would trigger a secondary wave of extinctions.

In spite of any accumulation over Greenland and Antarctic, mean sea levels have risen steadily, by approximately 20-cm over the last hundred years.

*Medium term, I dount anyone has any idea which way the change at the south pole will go - it could eventually melt as things heat up, or freeze over and go direct to a southern-hemispheric ice-age; what is pretty certain is that if CO2 accumulation continues, the Antarctic temperature won't stay the same, and flipping either way would cause mass extinctions

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#58
In reply to #52

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/14/2007 1:07 PM

I understand what you are saying. However the flooding part is what I dispute to be an indicator of a pending ice age.

Historically we have gone through several min-ice ages in recent history (meaning since the last major ice age about 10,000 years ago).

There is one aspect that is often overlooked when assessing the rise in sea levels. Recently satellite data indicated that the arctic ocean levels have not significantly changed whereas increases have been observed eleswhere. This phenonmenon is attributable to isostatic recovery of the arctic from the last great ice age. In other words, the continental glaciers depressed the underlying crust into the earth's mantle. When the ice melted, the crust began a slow recovery to it's original position (called isostatic recovery). The main point about this is that as the earth beneath the Arctic ocean rises, it displaces water which then flows east and west into the Atlantic and Pacific oceans respectively - contributing to a rise in sea levels.

I would caution you on accepting as fact the rise in mean sea levels being 20 cm over the last 100 years. It has only been the introduction of laser measurements from space that we are able to clearly measure today's sea levels and any measurements from even 210 years or more ago are subject to large variations.

Finally your comment that "if CO2 accumulation continues.." reflects what is wrong with this entire argument. Climatologists would have us all believe that man-made CO2 is the primary or most significant parameter causing global warming when in fact in an open system there are many many other factors to take into account.

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#60
In reply to #58

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/14/2007 5:27 PM

I'm only going to address a few points here:

1) Tidal heights have routinely been measured throughout the world for several 100s of years. When people say that "sea levels have risen", they are referring to the level relative to the coastlines, and I don't think you can gainsay this. What is observed is an acceleration in this aspect of the rise, starting in the late 19C. But I agree it's not conclusive of much

2) What follows in this paragraph is entirely naive theory of my own making - but I'd like to see good evidence that the basic mechanism was incorrect. The level of build-up of ice would have been greatest over land masses. Over the sea, the initial build-up would have been slower, because of the specific heat and circulation of the ocean, and also the thinner crust; in any case, the ice would initially have displaced sea-water. So the effect would have been that land-masses were pushed down more than the seas. So it would seem that any recovery from this would be expected to result in the seas becoming gradually deeper, and the land-mass rising.

3) you write that "climatologists would have us all believe that man-made CO2 is the .. most significant ..." The reason is that they have a number of things that drive them to that conclusion:
The figures for actual temperature-rises correlate remarkably well with a physically-based model, and disappear when they remove the impact of the CO2;
They have looked for non-CO2 explanations for the warming, and failed to find anything that could be the correct magnitude; and
They have looked for alternative sources of the present CO2 increase, and failed to find any that could be large enough, and the increases we have seen are ridiculously close to what you would predict from a naive model based on man's impact. (You do have to include reductions in algal growth due to iron depletion, deforestation, and other non-fuel effects, however).

Fyz

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#69
In reply to #60

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/16/2007 6:47 PM

I agree tidal heights have been measured for 100's of years, but to then take the data and determine that the increase in sea levels has been in the cm's is a bit of a stretch to me. Certainly measurements from satellites provide much more accurate measurements. However relating that data to data collected 100's of years ago has the same problem as temperature measurements made 100's of years ago. The accuracy simply is not there.

In regards to your second point, I don't quite follow your theory. I don't think the build up of ice over water had anything to do with the thickness of the earth's crust. I agree build-up is related to water temperature, currents and salinity so let's agree that the buildup of ice over water proceeds at a slower rate than a build up over land mass.

With the ice displacing sea water, it doesn't follow that land masses were pushed down more. There is an incongruency there. The build-up of ice on the land mass is what pushed the land down into the mantle.

Now your conclusion that seas would become deeper is sort of correct - to be deeper more water has to be added - which happened with the melt of the last continental glaciers. However the recovery of the land mass is very slow - we are still experiencing it today, 10,000 years after the fact and a great deal longer than the addition of more water from the melting ice. Now applying this to the Arctic Ocean, we end up with the underlying land rising which displaces water hence the sea levels of the Arctic Ocean appear not to be rising as ocean levels are elsewhere. This can only happen due to the sea bed coming up and the dsiplaced water flowing to the east and west.

Your third point is the crux (sp?) of the issue between the two of us. Climatologists run a model that shows if CO2 is reduced, the efect on the climate will be a corresponding temperature reduction. That sximply tells me that the model has on over emphasis of CO2 as a parameter in global climate than it should.

For example, I can develop an economic model that will forecast hyper inflation, or one that will forecast higher unemployment simply by tinkering with the derivatives. I can also run that same model using historical data and by changing the influence of that data, gernerate calculations such as interest rates, employment etc simply by adjusting the influence each parameter has within the model. I don't think either of us is naive enought to believe that such tinkering does not happen when these models are run.

Finally here is a link that presents historical global temperatures from both the lower and upper atmospheres. As stated within the document, one would expect that the patterns for the two areas should be similar but not only are they not, there is quite a remarakble difference between the 2 sets of data.

http://www.ghcc.msfc.nasa.gov/MSU/msusci.html

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#72
In reply to #69

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/18/2007 8:42 AM

Hi

Unfortunately, there is no way to address everything properly in this forum, and I think it is more helpful to try to do one thing properly than muddle along on multiple fronts at the same time and understand absolutely nothing. However, I will cover your points in this post as well as I can without 'going to town'.

I think that you are inappropriately negative about traditional surveying measurements*, and I will make one more attempt to clarify my position the theory on isostatic relaxation that you bring forward..

I had understood that you were saying that a significant proportion of the rise in ocean levels was the result of relaxation of the earth's crust since the last ice ages. If we consider the direct effect of the isostatic relaxation, a rise in ocean levels (relative to the land mass) would correspond to an ocean floor that is rising and continents that are sinking. However, as you yourself observed, the situation during the last major ice-age was that the "the build-up of ice on the land mass is what pushed the land down into the mantle"** similarly, the nett removal of water from the oceans would have caused the ocean floor to rise. If we have a slow recovery to the positions corresponding to current loading levels, that would mean the height of the land would now be rising relative to the floor of the ocean***. Clearly, if this simple theory is right, the effect is in the opposite direction what we are observing. I hope this is clearer now.

"That simply tells me that the model has an overemphasis of CO2 as a parameter". I don't believe that it should do that. What it should tell you is that the abbreviated explanations that relate to present times do not go into the relative weightings at other times. In principle it is possible that it also applies to the model, but in this case there are enough people in the community who are seriously trying to balance the model by analysing other possibilities.

Finally, the reference on stratospheric cooling: this has had the graphs updated, but the text is effectively pre-2005. The temperature in the stratosphere is depends primarily on the balance between diffusive/stirring effects and radiative effects. More recent work has indicated an increase in stratospheric currents caused by increased disturbances in the upper troposphere, and this level of movement was not apparently accounted in your reference; this would increase the conductive/convective coupling between the troposphere and the stratosphere, making the cooling effects of adiabatic expansion more significant as compared to heating via radiative interchange.

Fyz

*Before satellites, we can say that there was no good measurement of the height of the earth's oceans relative to the centre of the earth. But measurements of sea/ocean heights relative to the local land were pretty good - the only necessary tools are surveying sticks and line-of-sight projections. As long as we compare like with like, there should be no problem in relying on these measurements.

**That's what I thought I said too

***On this basis, in the absence of additional water, the total area of the oceans would be reducing, and the average depth (surface to sea-bed) would be increasing; to complete the picture, this would also correspond to a reduction in the height of the ocean surfaces relative to the centre of the earth.

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#74
In reply to #72

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/18/2007 1:48 PM

Good day to you

I don't view this forum as a means to change anyone's ideas on global warming - they are the ones who have to do that. Instead through an exchange of ideas and thoughts the very best we can achieve here is for people, including ourselves, to realize that neither postion is laid in stone and that there are a multiple number of possible errors in both arguments that can severaly affect their effect on the problem.

As for traditional surveying measurements, I have run many field surveys myself involving geochemistry and geomorphology and so I do have a first hand view of the intricacies of collecting samples, analyzing them and interpreting the results in an open environment. Yes studies done within a lab can be very precise with a minimal of exterior items influencing outcomes. This can't be said for field work.

For instance, if you undertake a survey to detect amounts of radon gas, you have to understand that atomosphereic pressure and the moisture content of the soil will both affect your results. Also I know that the analytical results of determining the amount of uranium in a soil, water or rock sample can vary considerably depending on what analytical method you employ. In the end your ultimate interpretaion of the results will depend on what methods were used as each method will produce quite varying results.

I didn't say a significant portion of the rise in ocean levels...etc. What I did say is that the amount of water in the arctic ocaen that has been displaced by isostatic recovery of the underlying crust should be accounted for in the calculations regarding the change in sea levels. Unfortunately they are not accounted for because it is only recently (this past year) that it has been determined that the sea levels of the arctic ocean have not changed.

Unfortunately I either do not understand your theory regaring ocean floors or you are wrong in what I beleive to be your theory. First of all, IF the formation of the glaciers resulted in less ocean water, the effect on the ocean fllor is nil because the ice is displaces its weight in water so there should be no effect on the ocean floor. With respect to the continental glaciers, they formed because the rate of snowfall vastly exceeded the melting rate during the summer months. That ice did not result from the freezing of ocan water.

A rise in ocean levels does not correspond to continents sinking in the current case. Yes in areas of subduction, the shoreline would drawn down fall below sea level but that would be a local phenomenon.

To reiterate my argument one more time:

1 - Continental glaciers covered most of North America, including the area we know as the arctic.

2 - as the glaciers melted, the continent, which was pushed down into the mantle by the weight of the ice, started to recover.

3- This recovery, known as isostatic recovery is a slow process because the mantle is like a sea of molasses and accordingly the recovery rate is substantially lower than the time it took to depress the land mass in the first place.

4 - this is a localized phenomenon as places such as Russia were not covered by continental glaciers as Canada was.

5- As the sea floor beneath the Arctic Ocean rises due to isostatic recovery, it displaces some water which would flow east and west into the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

6- This displaced water should be taken into account when calculations are done to determine what the historical change in sea levels is.

I believe you are trying to apply my theory in too broad a sense. I was simply reiterating what scientists have only recently observed from satellite imagery from the arctic and applied what they believe is the reason for their observations. The main point is arctic water is being displaced to the other oceans which means more water is in those oceans which means it could partially account for the change in sea levels in those oceans.

The fact other people are curently examining the model to determine other influences may be in play in terms of climate change is a good thing. In fact it supports my contention that it is way too premature to blame rises in CO2 in the atmosphere as the sole cause of global warming.

Whether the text is pre 2005 or not, the observations still provide a perplexing situation. My apologies but thermo dynamics is not and never has been a strength of mine so I will take your comments about "the cooling effects of adiabatic expansion " at faith. As for the increased disturbances in the upper troposphere having an effect on the temperatures, doubt if they are significant enought to count for the dramatic temperature differences noted in the graphs.

You can compare like measurements with like measurements, however you must also bring the reduced accuracy associated with htose measurements into the picture. Hence I believe that if you do a good portion of the rise in sea levels that has been onbserved may be associated with statistical error as opposed to climate change.

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#34

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/12/2007 3:48 PM

A reflection of scientific process from the eyes of a climate "scientist":

An engineer is out walking in the park and sees a wild-eyed man hitting a strangely painted block of wood with a stick. The engineer's curiosity gets the better of him, so he asks the wild-eyed man, "Why are you hitting that block?"
The wild-eyed man replies with a bit of a crazed smile, "The sound keeps the elephants away."
The engineer, now fully intrigued, digs deeper, "But why? There are no elephants here."
As the wild-eyed man continues to make his noise with renewed vigor, he says, "See! It's working."

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#37
In reply to #34

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/12/2007 5:24 PM

The trouble with this analogy is that, so far, the temperature is rising - as predicted in the 1950's. Perhaps we should borrow the climate scientist's stick?

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#42
In reply to #37

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/12/2007 10:01 PM

I think you missed what the analogy was. It has to do with correlation - correlation does not prove causaulity

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#35

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/12/2007 3:53 PM

I came across this site while researching another topic. It really reflects what the problems are with the so called "scientific evidence" that is postulated by climatologists to claim that man-made CO2 is the cause for higher levels of CO2 in today's atmosphere.

http://xtronics.com/reference/globalwarming.htm

It's worth reading no matter what side of the debate you are on.

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#36
In reply to #35

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/12/2007 5:21 PM

This article may be honestly meant, but the result is certainly otherwise. Those workers who are seriously investigating the possibilities of global really try to quantify the level of uncertainty; this article spends a lot of time casting doubt merely by saying that there is uncertainty, but not actually quantifying it. In the end, that does not in any way debunk the theory - but it could confuse readers and undermine the principle of honest assessment.

Then it gets worse.
The lack of certainty on the output from volanoes is stated to be huge. That's true. But it is not relevant, because the uncertainty is on such a relatively small number. By way of an example of how we know the outputs, the proportions of CO2 and sulphur in volcanic output is well-known from spectroscopic measurements. If we assume that all sulphur in the atmosphere comes from volcanoes, we can place an upper bound on the CO2. Even if we place the maximum reasonable uncertainty on the level, it is still orders of magnitude below the outputs due to man's activities.
Then there's the statement "if we had multiple cycles of correlation between CO2 and global temperature...". We do, from the correlation between plant fossil records and CO2 levels.
Then there is the point about concern regarding an ice-age. One feared source as mentioned was that dust particle production was increasing exponentially; clearly, the main reason this concern has gone away is... we changed our behaviour (for other reasons)**.

In principle, I could go on, but it's late, I'm running short of patience, and I still have work to do.

Fyz

**However, there was another group that were predicting an ice age for a quite different reasons - the reason you don't hear much about this is that a) it has been identified as being a 'significant risk', rather than there being a high probability that it will happen, and b) reducing global warming will also reduce the risk of precipitating an ice age in this way. As there seems to be enough of a problem explaining global warming without confusing the issue with a complex paradox, the workers in this area have had the sense to keep their pronouncements low-key. In case anyone is interested, the feared mechanism is changes in ocean currents, followed by progressive freezing starting form the polar icecaps. My recollection is that the basic concern was originally formulated by Hoyle and co-workers in the 1950's-1960's, and is one of the few areas where his more populist statements have not (yet?) been comprehensively debunked.

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#41
In reply to #36

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/12/2007 9:32 PM

While the article may be simplistic in presentation, the basis that it puts forward - namely there is a great deal of with respect to the role of green house gases and climate change. Just recently there was a report out of England that identified the apparent impact cosmic radiation has on the creation of clouds which has a cooling effect on the earth. The premise of the study was that the cycilcal radiation from the sun affects ther amount of cosmic radiation that gets through to the earth - when the sun's radiation is at a high point (as it is now) its radiation tends to deflect cosmic radiation away from the earth which means less cloud and higher temperatures.

As for volcanic activity there is a great deal of under water volcanism that takes place plus not all volcanoes are the same - some have substantially more CO2 than others do.

There is no general fixed relationship between the sulphur and CO2 content of volcanic emissions. The make-up of those emissions is dependant on the makeup of the magma from which it is generated from. We know that magam can have a substantial different chemical make-up.

One thing all volcanoes do exhale is water vapor which is by far the largest green house gas in the atmosphere. Furthermore because the material and gases that come out of a volcanoe are super heated and as such thrown well up into the atmosphere at times some 50,000 feet. Gases at that altitude tend to stay there for long periods of time being dispersed by the high winds usually found there. To me that has a greater likelihood of affecting the CO2 content of the atmosphere than ground level CO2 which we know is heavy and tends to migrate to the earth rather than make its way into thhe upper atmosphere.

We donm't have accurate historical data for global temperatures - after all its only been in the last 100 years that we have been able to accurately measure it. Yes you can "see" proxies for past historical temperature based on ice cores and perhaps some other method (tree rings for one) - however these are not accurate measures and there are a number of varying factors that lead to the ice and tree rings that are being studies.

My point is that climate science is not a true science but rather an attempt to apply science to determine a forecast - something that is fraught with uncertainty.

The whole question about climate change is that there is a great deal of uncertainty in what is causing it. Modeling as a forcast is by nature full of uncertainty as exhibited by the range of forecasts made by any one model. You would then have to associated the uncertainty with each and every model used which in itself is difficult to quantify because you need to know what the underlying assumptions that are embedded into each separate model.

Its too bad you are running short of patience - perhaps that is limiting your ability to stand back and look at the whole picture?

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#45
In reply to #41

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/13/2007 5:22 AM

Actually, I was running out of patience to write about any more of the inaccurate and/or data-free content of that article - particularly as much of the relevant data has been referenced from CR4 already.

Taking your points one at a time:

At one point you say "means less cloud and higher temperatures", and at another you refer to water as a greenhouse gas. Both are to some extent true - and the tendency of water to form clouds is one of many reasons why it's net effect is not as large as CO2. The more important reason is that, unlike CO2, it is not cumulative in the long-term (see also dust)

The sun's radiation (all forms) is clearly an important parameter, and we are going through a periodic peak. But the present peak does not appear unusual, and the effects we are seeing are more than a factor of two above expected levels.

Volcanic contribution: you are right that all volcanoes are different; this is known because volcanologists have taken the measurements of visible volcanoes. The data I reference is the result of those measurements, and is orders of magnitude too low to account for what we see. N.B. that the overall contribution of underwater emissions is reasonably well known from the depth distribution of CO2 in the oceans. This appears to indicate that the net movement (below plankton level) is into the oceans at present. You also suggest that other factors in volcanic output would cause global warming, and your comments suggest that there is a possibility this could be the case; however, over history, there has been consistent correlation between high levels of volcanic activity and global cooling. So the present level of volcanic activity would not merely need to be unusual in extent, but unusual in form and effect. The only evidence I have seen is that recent volcanic activity is of much the same form as historic. I'd be interested to see any measurements that contradict this.

"There are a number of varying factors ... that are being studied". And, not mentioned by you, the range of possible results/interpretations deliberately taken into account in some of the the studies into global warming, without substantively effecting the expectations.

"Climate science is not a true science". It is not perfect science, but then such a thing does not exist. Climate science gives a set of models based on observations, some of which are under controlled conditions (e.g. measurements of material properties), and others of which are observations of a world over which the climate scientists have little direct interest. The models are based on standard physics, and have been checked against historical measures as for as practical. At one time, the models would have included significant fudge-factors to make them fit 'reality'; the climatologists then looked for the reasons that these were necessary, and incorporated their findings in the models - but included findings in the models that gave opposing effects to those they were looking for. Over the past twenty years, the position has changed from one where you needed the 'fudges' to make a close enough fit to observations to one where, without any intentional fudges, the range of modelling results is roughly symmetrical around the observations, and the errors bars are significantly smaller than the effects. There are two reasons for this improvement - the global-warming signal is much larger, and there is more data available for the models, and more processing power to run them.

So, the climatologists admit uncertainty and try to quantify it, you use it to blacken them as non-scientists. And you use my lack of patience in repeated debunking of this unquantified material to suggest that I "can't stand back and look at the whole picture". What I am trying to do is ensure that my picture is built, so far as possible, of soundly-based material, and not accept as significant things that have been shown not to be.

Finally for now, I do not regard the case for man-induced global warming as 'scientifically proved'. I merely regard it as by far the most probable explanation at the present. Given that the effects could be massive, the risk is high, and the cost of countering it relatively low, the case I am forwarding is that we should do what is reasonable to minimise any effect. In which regard, the important thing (as a human being) is what we do to minimise the risk until such time as the science becomes even more certain (one way or the other)

Fyz

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#49
In reply to #45

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/13/2007 1:25 PM

My intent for posting the reference to the article was to simply present some basic questions regarding global warming without a lot of science being presented. Instead it was intended to stimulate questions which would then stimulate thoughts amongst us all - some readily would discount such articles while other would say - THERE that supports my position. Neither side is valid IMHO. Rather anything that will stimulate questions which can lead to a more thorough understanding of a topic is positive.

It is true that water vapor has a tendency to form clouds, however there are two aspects of that to consider. The first is what percentage is altered to clouds and how does that compare to the continuous generation of additional water vapor into the atmosphere. The second has to do with the interaction of clouds and CO2 to form acid rain and ultimately return that CO2 to the surface of the earth. Furthermore with the atomic weight of CO2, that gas has a tendency to migrate towards the earth's surface (not to mention the role of atmosphereic pressure on that gas at the earth's surface).

Cosmic rays can create electrically charged ions in the atmosphere that act as a magnet for water vapor causing clouds to form. Now the sun currently is at a historically high level of activity and as such deflects many of the cosmic rays which otherwise would have hit our planet. Thus cloud cover is reduced. I guess we differ in terms of whether the current level of sun activity is a blip or not.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sun_spot_cycle

I don't thin you really understand volcanoes at all. Let me put things in a different perspective. There are the flowing types (Kilauea, Mt. Etna) and the explosive types (Mt. St Helens, Mt. Pinatuba). In essence there are about half a dozen different classes of volcanoes, each exhibiting different charachteristics, including chemical composition. It is quite inaccurate to compile averages from this data and make general statements about their effect on climate.

On another issue, since 1950, annual volcanic eruptions have increased from about 35 per year to over 50 per year. The gases that volcanoes exhale are mainly water vapor and some CO2. Other gases are relatively minor. As I mentioned previously, these gases are super heated and then blown well up into the atmosphere where they are dispersed. Compare this with CO2 and water vapor coming from a smoke stack. Changes are nearly 100% of the volcanic CO2 ends up in our atmosphere.

Your reference to the link of volcanic activity and global cooling is ties to those large erutions that spew tons of debris into the air like Mt. St. Helens did. Certainly large amounts of debris in the air does cool the planet down but don't link this effect to all volcanic activity as you would be wrong to do so. You might be interested in this link to garner further knowledge:

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Study/Volcano/

Any modelling, be it climate, geological, economic etc is by nature inexact. It is a compilation of theories or ideas that are meshed together in order to estimate an outcome. To say such a process is not perfect is really understating the reality. Where climate models really fall down is when they tie historical proxies for data that are then compared to current data taken with good instruments and in multiple locations. They then use this data to predict something 20, 30 or 50 years down the road.

"Climate science gives a set of models based on observations",..I would contend that the models are based on the respective scientists' INTERPRETATION of recorded observations. Afterall they were not around 100 or 200 years ago. By nature observations are subject to interpretation. As for models being based on standard physics, that doesn't make them correct or accurate. The key point it being able to clearly and separately identify the inter-relationships that exist within an OPEN system and accomodate those changes into the model. That is something that is VERY difficult to achieve if not impossible in an open system.

For instance, an economic model is based on quite a few mathematical relationships involving functions within the economy and yet economists' predictions can vary as much as 50% from one year to the next. Herin lies the difficulty in undertaking any forecast.

I don't blacken them, I simply feel that taking historical data that has been filtered to predict what we see today (the basis for their model) is fraught with numerous uncertainties that are beyond resolution. Anyone who has taken a course in forecasting knows that when trying to predict, the past data is not a good proxy for the future. Similarly a high correlation does not prove causaulity.

To conclude, Dr. Orrell, formerl of University College of London believes that the errors in being able to predict weather lies in the errors within the models they use. In similar fashion, the predictability of the climate models should be taken with a "grain of salt" for the same reasons. There is no scientific basis for believing that climate is more predictable than weather."

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#51
In reply to #49

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/13/2007 5:22 PM

I thought that I had made it clear that different volcanoes have different characteristics. You obviously can add the outputs of the different volcanoes - provided you take the trouble to calculate based on total output.

Regarding SO2 emissions - they do indeed cause very significant warming, and following an explosive eruption, the combination of SO2 and dust in the upper atmosphere will cause global warming in the winter and cooling in the summer. The maximum lifetime of the heating part of the effect from any recent eruption is about 3-years, though the cooling effect can be more persistent. For the case you quote, the overall effect is thought to be summer cooling from year one, with winter warming in the first three years, followed by a decaying amount of overall cooling. If you have a sequence of just this carefully chosen type of eruption, the medium-term net effect remains one of cooling. Long term (i.e about 20 years after an eruption), there is no doubt but that the additional CO2 released will indeed contribute to global warming. But the fact remains that the total output of CO2 from volcanoes in recent years has been tiny compared with the observed size of the increase in atmospheric concentration
(N.B. that if, as currently appears to be the case, you continue to assert that it is impossible to add up the total output of CO2 from the volcanoes, based on spectroscopic observations and gas movements from each case, we really have no basis for reasoned discussion).

Regarding the location of CO2: I have so far failed to find definitive information on the duration of excess concentrations of CO2 in the stratosphere. I had assumed mixing between the troposphere and the stratosphere would have a half-life of a couple of years, but all the references I could immediately find gave much shorter times - but the wording appeared ambiguous. However - even my presumed times would discount any significant medium-term effect due to the fact that the volcanoes initially project the CO2 into the stratosphere. If anyone has access to clear information on this, it would be much appreciated.

BTW, with regard to the NASA link - you need to be very careful when reading specialised papers. In this case, the specific interest in insolation and high-level absorption meant that the important effect that allowed the authors to gather information was the winter warming. They mentioned the other parts of the cycle that have very different characteristics, but didn't go into detail about these because this was not relevant to the measurements they were making.

There are, as I tried to convey, two classes of modelling - fundamental and extrapolative. Extrapolative models carry exactly the risks that you convey. Fundamentally-based models will not tell you what will happen at any particular time, but will tell you what you should expect to be the average under a particular set of circumstances. For the purposes of global warming, I believe that the only models worth considering are the fundamentally-based ones. Observations are used as sanity-checks for these models, but do not drive the formulation. What is surprising (and concerning) is how closely the climate of the last fifty years has tracked the predictions of these fundamental models.

Do I gather that you have taken a course in forecasting? If so, you will understand both the limits and the capabilities of the practice, and how they depend not only on the level of information and randomness, but also in the type of the model and the way it is applied.

Regarding David Orrell - is this the same man who in 2001 declared that "there is nothing to stop us getting weather forecasts right if we want to?" If so, his statement that "climate is no more predictable than the weather" doesn't seem to be much of a limitation. That is not to say that there are an awful lot of inaccuracies being purveyed on both sides of the argument, and a great deal of hype as well. My objective is to stay on the side of accuracy, and avoid the hype. If I fail in either of these, anyone is welcome to point this out - but please don't do so until you have checked your facts, as I don't have infinite time to spend re-correcting things.

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#57
In reply to #51

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/14/2007 12:53 PM

You did acknowledge that volcanoes have different characteristics, however you also stated:

"however, over history, there has been consistent correlation between high levels of volcanic activity and global cooling."

..which seems to infer that volcanoes cause global cooling rather than contribute to global warming. The cooling effect of volcanoes is associated with those eruptions that spew debris up into the atmosphere. Many many more volcanic eruptions are not that type. Remember there is no link whatsoever between correleation and cause.

Given the effect of SO2 on warming the planet, I am wondering why those gases were left out of the "equation" given that there are numerous man-made sources of SO2.

Your comments seem to support my contention that volcanoes could be playing a more significant role in climate change than climatologist appear to be willing to recognize.

The trouble with relating the CO2 from volcanoes is that it tends to be grouped with all sources of CO2 whci is then reduced by the amount absorbed in carbon sinks. In fact I contend that 100% of the CO2 from volcanoes should be accounted for while that absobed by carbon sinks is entirely from ground-sources CO2.

Unfortunately there are not spectographic observations on each and every volcanoe throughout the world. For instance there was a study recently done by the USGS where CO2 was measured from the soils on Mt. Washington. The amount of CO2 detected was significant to the point they issued a warning for campers not to pitch their tents in low depressions. Howmany other areas of the world are leaking CO2 from magma in a similar fashion? My point is that in an open source environment, it is exteremely difficult to capture all of the data accurately and so we end up making assumptions to determine what we believe besr represents the true picture. This is where the greatest potential of error exists.

As for the duration of volcanic-sources CO2 in the atmosphere, the best way to examine the issue it to look at it from the perspective of man-made CO2:

Some scientists claim that the build-up in man-made CO2 in the atmosphere is reflected in the observed increase in CO2 in today's atmosphere. Now man-made CO2 is generated at or near ground level (omit differences due to elevation abouve sea level). On the other hand we have super heated CO2 from volcanic eruptions that send CO2 into the atmosphere. So if the CO2 from volcanoes only spends a small time in the atmosphere before it falls to earth, how in heck can the man-made CO2 rise and remain in the atmosphere they way people are telling us?

While the NASA paper was focused on winter warming, what I was trying to illustrate is that there is a direct impact on global climate that can be attributable to volcanic activity.

From my understanding, the concept of fundamental modeling is best used in the IT arena and when applied to something like climate, it doesn't hold water. Climatologistsd are extrapolating current observations into the future and are issuing dire warnings that is something isn't done now, mankind as we know it is at risk.

One basic process used in forecasting is to identify the relationships that exists between parameters in the past and using those relationships, create a forecasting model that will preduict what will happen in the future. There are two very big issues associated with this process. The first is that if you have not fully identified or fully understand the relationships amongst the parameters, the predictions will be meaningless. Secondly, you may not have identified each and every factor that impacts the parameters you have used and so any prediction you make will be meaningless.

To date we do not fully understand the impacts of El Nino, cosmic radiation, the earth's wobble, ocean current drivers, volcanic activity, the sun's radiation and variations in the earth's magnetic field on our climate. Without fully understanding ALL parameters that could affect our climate, any output from a climate model is meaningless. (and I haven't even mentioned the human factor at all).

Yes I have taken several graduate courses in forecasting and I fully understand the compexities. You also mustt take into account that it is easier to forecast in a closed system (such as an ore deposit) than it is in an open system such as our climate.

Mr. Orrell is ikely the same man you identified above. His point is relevant because the modelling carried out by weather forecasters is scientific, is based on many many data points and yet there is always the unknown (something within the environment that was not taken into account) which has an impact on subsequent weather that is different from what was predicted.

I don't believe that you and I are all that far apart. Where we appear to differ is the level of credence we place on the predictions of climate and the role that man-made CO2 is playing in the evolution of the world's climate. That in itself is nothing more than academic. However when governments get into the picture, and something like the Kyoto Accord is written up (and yes I have read the entire accord - tedious but have done so) things are taken too far.

Finally a while back I download a database with an associated program that will provide search capabilities for historical volcanic eruptions. Unfortunately I lost the link to the site where I obtained it. What the program allows me to do is to list volcanic eruptions on a year-by-year basis. From that I am aware of an increase in global volcanic activity since the late 1980's (I went back as far as 1950).

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#59
In reply to #57

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/14/2007 5:05 PM

All science that I have ever been involved in recognises a link between correlation and cause . If we have a good correlation, it is worth looking for causality. What correlation does not tell us is the direction of the causality - or indeed, whether both effects might be caused by a third unmeasured event. For the case of volcanoes, the position is quite clear, as the correlations and the physically-theory lead to the same answers: explosive eruptions lead to initial reductions in summer-winter temperature differentials, coupled to a reduction in average temperatures. The causes of the temperature reduction include scatterers in the upper atmospheres, but there can also be a contribution from absorption of CO2 due to increased algal activity, as iron emissions act as a fertiliser. As this settles out, it is eventually followed by some global warming due to the CO2 emissions - but you need to understand that recent events have neither had time to settle out, nor are the recent volcanic emissions of CO2 significant (compared with the 0.1% observed increase in total atmospheric concentration). Sub-sea volcanoes can cause global cooling via the algae as above, and also eventually some CO2 contribution. Other classes of volcano give intermediate effects.

There are a two principal reasons that man-made SO2 is not generally considered as a significant greenhouse gas: first, under most circumstances it actually acts as a coolant, because it absorbs red-near_infrared sunlight (there are circumstances where it can be a significant short-term warming agent that I was referring to previously, but I was sloppy with that answer, and I apologise). The other reason is that SO2 that is emitted into the lower atmosphere is quickly absorbed, because it is so highly soluble in water; generally, it soon combines with other materials (sometimes carbonates, unfortunately) and so does not return to the atmosphere. Even SO2 that is reaches the upper atmosphere has a relatively short life up there, before being rained out. That means that it doesn't accumulate. So far as explosive volcanic outputs are concerned, it precipitates as fast or faster than fine dusts (because it also assist in particle aggregation).

There is significant mixing between the upper and lower atmospheres over times that are similar to the depletion of dusts etc. This means that the behaviour even of CO2 from eruptive volcanoes becomes indistinguishable from CO2 from other sources within the timescale that the overall effect is of global cooling. This means that there is no justification for treating it separately - at least so far as effects on global warming are concerned.

The problem at Mt Washington (and other similar sites) was not the total quantity of CO2 emitted - that would have been reasonably well known and quite small in global terms. The issue would have been that, when CO2 seeps upwards through soils, its relatively high density allows it to remain in any dips or hollows - you might choose to think of this as a gaseous lake.

Given the low level of recent volcanic contribution to global warming, I think we've now given volcanoes far more space than they merit - at least in terms of this thread. Therefore I don't propose to address the subject again here.

I used the term fundamental in terms of being physics-based, rather than extrapolative. I do not know where you formed the impression that the climatologists are merely extrapolating current climate trends - such models do exist, but do not form a major part of the evidence that man is responsible for the warming. It is the physically-based modelling that is persuading the scientific panels that man-induced global warming is a real problem. SFIK, the only part of this model that is extrapolative in any proper sense is the level of human carbon emissions that they have factored into the equations. This is the basis on which the risks (and proposed precautionary actions) are assessed. I am unfamiliar with the use of the term "Fundamental Modeling" in IT - it certainly couldn't have the meaning that I was using, which is standard in such fields as fluid mechanics, semiconductor design, metallurgy, chemical dynamics... I would have thought you would be fully familiar with this usage after attending postgraduate courses on modelling.

I'll pass right over your course notes on modelling, as they only have relevance when applied correctly. One thing, however, is clear from your listing of things we don't fully understand (El Nino, etc) - that the importance of 'significance' has not been adequately communicated by these courses. True, we only have partial understanding - that is a fundamental limitation. On the basis you write here, that would mean that we could never draw any conclusions about anything. A standard part of modelling methodology has to be that we assess the relative sizes of various effects, and model these to the extent that gives adequate accuracy. I have been through this process here with respect to volcanoes, and shown that they contribute about 1% of the changes in CO2 levels we see at present, and that other effects are generally such as to cause cooling. In order to validate the results, it is standard practice to run the model using the extrema of these effects as inputs, and see that is has little effect on the outcome. The same process can be and has been applied to most of the other effects you describe (I can't say all, because I don't know all the details). In the medium term, all combinations appear to lead to the same outcome - global warming. This is the period that the report refers to when it says "global warming 90% certain". Longer term, potential instabilities mean that there could be further warming or another ice-age - neither of which is desirable for humanity, or indeed most other species around at the present.

The human factor is the only one we can do anything about. The basic model says what we expect to happen if we do nothing about it. It also gives predictions if we take certain levels of action. The outcome is that significant warming in the near-medium term is probably unavoidable, but we can avoid the worst if mankind takes suitable action.

Your comments about open and closed systems are pretty-much correct. Open systems require the model to be validated throughout the range of expected external influences - and this is precisely what has been done.

The point I am making is that in 2001 Dr Orrell said precisely that accurate weather forecasting was practical beyond accepted limits (this was shortly after he finished his Ph.D**). Now he is saying that accurate climate forecasts are impossible precisely because the limits are similar to weather forecasting. I'm not saying that this is wrong. What concerns me is that his articles appear to be encourage a level of scepticism that I see as beyond cynicism. No-one believes that the climate model is hugely accurate - the point is that it is accurate enough for necessary purpose of demonstrating what the likely problems are and what must be done (from individual behaviour to government and global policy) to minimise the potential risks.

The Kyoto accord is, in my view, enough to put any normal human being off the whole idea of addressing the problem. In addition, its reports of the evidence behind the science are at best misleading.

I must admit that I don't find reports of conversions (in either direction) to be in any way evidence of anything - except possibly that some people are more easily swayed than others.

Yes, I too have a problem with hype - it can be useful to convince people who are not in a position to examine the evidence - but it can also develop a life of its own - and in addition has the potential to persuade the rational mind that the hype is there to cover a lack of evidence, which is not always the case. I also agree that religious fervour usually leads to inappropriate decisions.

But - my most important point - global warming is in progress, and the best evidence is that it will lead to severe consequences (possibly with higher global temperatures, possibly an extreme reversal due to instabilities), but that humankind can do something to minimise the worst risks. Your denials to date may be more apparent than real - but nevertheless could have (to me undesired negative effects), which is why I joined this argument.

Fyz

**I was able to find a 2002-4 publication by Dr Orrel's co-workers (Consistent nonlinear dynamics: identifying model inadequacy). If you can read this, you will get a pretty good idea how the work is relevant to evaluating model stability; its potential appears to be in minimising the number of variables that are needed to be exercised to assess the validity of a conclusion (it assumes the model is fundamentally correct). Unfortunately, I don't believe that application to models of the size of weather forecasting or global warming is anywhere near feasible as yet.

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#66
In reply to #59

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/16/2007 1:45 PM

I don't dispute there exists a possible link between correlation and cause. Certainly as scientists need to pursue a theory from some indicator which may be correlation. However there appears to be an abundance of people - mainly laypeople, who seem to beleive that a high correlation equates to a high probability. That simply isn't true.

You mention explosive volcanoes lead to summer-winter temperature differentials. That is likely to take place when there is a great amount of solid debris exhaled into the atmosphere causing the sun's radiation to reflect back into space etc. However not all explosive eruptions send copious amounts of dust etc into the air but rather a great deal of gas, of which water vapor and CO2 are the main constituents.

I beleive that recent events have had an impact on what we see happening in today's climate and that we do not have to wait until the CO2 has "settled out" before we observe it's effect on the climate. Scientists are astonished at how quickly glaciers and ice fields have melted since 1980 compared with the previous 25 years. Certainly man's economic activity has grown,however the effect on the environment from this activity must be tempered by improved technology. It is presumptious for us to point the finger at man-made emissions without a complete understanding of other parameters that affect the global climate, including but not limited to cosmic radiation, solar radiation and volcanic activity. The general impression I have received from my readings is that solar radiation increased during this 25 year period as has volcanic activity. To elimiate them as a cause for the increase in global temperatures over that period would be silly.

My point about the CO2 from volcanoes is that 100% of it essentially ends up in the upper atmosphere versus less than 50% of man-made and other ground-sourced CO2. Consequently we need to fully assess it's role in the current climate. Too often the numbers are accounted for collectively with man-made emissions which are then discounted to account for the absorption of CO2 within the carbon cycle. When you consider that super heated CO2 can be exhaled up to 50,0000 and when volcanic activity increases as it has in the past 15 to 25 years, you must account for the incremental effect of this additional CO2 in the atmosphere when you are observing increases in global temperatures during the same time period.

CO2 seeping through soil vs the CO2 that I breath out have no diffrence when it comes to density. Gases seeping through soil and fissures etc might be under some compressions, hopwever once they are near the surface, the only pressure they are exposed to is atomsphereic pressure. The cause for the concern at Mt. Washington is due to the fact CO2 is nearly 50% heavier than air and as such stays near the ground. The same thing happens to CO2 coming out of your chimney when your furnace is running. CO2 will tend to stay close to the surface of the earth because of its comparative weight and because of atmosphereic pressure.

As I illustrated above, I disagree with your contention that volcanic eruptions are given more space than they merit in this discussion. Every parameter that has a possible effect on global temperature must be thoroughly examined when we try to explain the cause for what we see today. To do so would simply be wrong.

Everything I have read about climate models is that those models were based on developing a relationship within the historical data and then using that model to predict what we can expect to happen in the future. To me that is extrapolative in every sense of the word. Their formulae (sometimes over 100 different relationships) are based on their understanding or view of certain parameters which are then linkled together to forecast global temperatures into the future - up to 50 years into the future!!!

To date, other than correlation, or the skweing of natural data, I have yet to see anything that links the CO2 accumulation in the atmosphere to man made CO2. Yes I have read many papers where this statement has been made and that no other reason has been given for the accumulation.

First of all, let me say that I do believe that there is a change happneing to the global climate. What I am not prepared to say is that this change is attributable to man's activities. I also content that the role of water vapor is being totally ignored in the entire discussion, not to mention the Greenhouse gas equivalent effect of other pollutants. A sector of the scientific community has decided that CO2 is the major cause for global warming and that we have to drastically reduce our CO2 emissions by taxing the heck out of the devloped nations to the benefit of those nations who are, on a total basis, the biggest polluters (Russia, India and China). - my aplogies, I digressed there.

Another problem I have with the climate models has to do with the data they use to generate the models. A primary assumption is that data used has been gathered with the same level of confidence. For instance if I take the air temperature here, and someone else takes it in say NY, that the accuracy of both readings is the same and hence the confidence that the readings are comparable (given time differences and weather). However to compare these numbers with any degree of confidence to temparature derived from geological or biological sources is unacceptable. I would estimate that the accuracy of temperatures used from the year 1000 has to have a degree of +/- close to 50% and yet climatologists take their numbers and "fit them" to the model to account for today's temperatures. You contend that climate models have been validated throughout the range of expected external influences - I contend that they have not and that is the root of the problem from my perspective.

Mann et al consciously removed certain data from their analysis in order to derive their "hockey stick" trend of temperatures. A subsequent analysis of their work proved they were wrong to do so and that had they left that data in their population, it would have resulted in different results. According to the Preident of the Statisticians of America (I may be incorrect in the organization's name here), Mann et al's conclusions could not be supported by a statistical analysis of the data and yet many many people point to this study as the "smoking gun" linking man-made CO2 to global warming.

Fundamental Modeling is used in IT when programmers develop software intensive systems:

http://www.f-m-c.org/ - sorry, link no longer available

Try googling the word for more information.

The post graduate courses I have taken were primarily on forecasting and not modeling. However I have undertaken geologic, economic, financial and business modeling during my career and as a result I am fully aware of the pitfalls that are embedded within any model. Especially if you have an outcome you want to arrive at, you can build a model to do just that.

We are always able to draw conclusions, however we must be aware that those conclusions are only as good and accurate as the data and the manipulation we carried out on that data. There is the old adage "garbage in garbage out" which we must be congnizant of - especially in this case where the accuracy and collection of the data being used to develop these models is all over the map.

In my past professional career as a geologist, I worked with a JV partner who identified the possibility of extracting uranium from potash. They built their model in the lab and had the process etc working fine. They then proceeded to sink 10's of millions of dollars (1970 dollars)into building the actuall plant where they could not replicate the observations they saw in their lab model. Despite taking several years to get the real plant to work, they necver did and walked away from their investment. I posted this story to illustrate the important differences that exist between a lab (closed system) and real time (open system).

The following is an interesting quote from Astrophysicist Nir Shariv, one of Israel's top young scientists: (from National Post - Feb 02/07)

All we have on which to pin the blame on greenhouse gases, says Dr. Shaviv, is "incriminating circumstantial evidence," which explains why climate scientists speak in terms of finding "evidence of fingerprints." Circumstantial evidence might be a fine basis on which to justify reducing greenhouse gases, he adds, "without other 'suspects.' " However, Dr. Shaviv not only believes there are credible "other suspects," he believes that at least one provides a superior explanation for the 20th century's warming.

"Solar activity can explain a large part of the 20th-century global warming," he states, particularly because of the evidence that has been accumulating over the past decade of the strong relationship that cosmic- ray flux has on our atmosphere. So much evidence has by now been amassed, in fact, that "it is unlikely that [the solar climate link] does not exist."

What we must realize is that by using historical temperature data in isolation from knowing what the level of solar and cosmic radiation was at the time those temperatures occurred, we are leaving out an important piece of the puzzle. To simply zero in on CO2 and believe that is man curtails CO2 output that things will fall back into place is simply absurd where there are so many other factors that affect climate. Hence Science is not the driving force behind trying to correct global warming - it's political.

I have a link below that plots the temperature (recognizing the limitations in accepting historical data as I have said above) in the lower atmosphere and that in the upper atmosphere. Now one would believe that the two graphs should be similar in nature (ie no real discernible difference in data) however you will note that they are not.

I agree climate change is happening. I also understand that in order to have another ice age, we need to have a rise in global temperatures in order to increase the rate of snow fall. This cannot be attributed to man's activities but rather is part of an overall geological process that has happened in the past. To pin global climate change on man has yet to be proven, especially since we know drastic changes have occurred in the past when man's influence was at the very best, minimal. I contend that sever consequences will happen whether we act of not.

Now don't get me qwrong, I do believe it makes common sense for man to minimize his effect on the environment and if that means we should start to be more active in this area - so be it. However don't bombard me with forecasts that "must be right because the model says so" because both you and I know that the errors associated with any models in an open source can be extreme and in this case enought to counter the "hockey stick" forecast.

Here are some other links you might be interested in visiting:

http://www.clearlight.com/~mhieb/WVFossils/greenhouse_data.html

http://www.marshall.org/article.php?id=13 - sorry, links no longer available

Finally some concluding comments about CO2:

FUN FACTS about CARBON DIOXIDE

Of the 186 billion tons of CO2 that enter earth's atmosphere each year from all sources, only 6 billion tons are from human activity. Approximately 90 billion tons come from biologic activity in earth's oceans and another 90 billion tons from such sources as volcanoes and decaying land plants.

At 368 parts per million CO2 is a minor constituent of earth's atmosphere-- less than 4/100ths of 1% of all gases present. Compared to former geologic times, earth's current atmosphere is CO2- impoverished.

CO2 is odorless, colorless, and tasteless. Plants absorb CO2 and emit oxygen as a waste product. Humans and animals breathe oxygen and emit CO2 as a waste product. Carbon dioxide is a nutrient, not a pollutant, and all life-- plants and animals alike-- benefit from more of it. All life on earth is carbon-based and CO2 is an essential ingredient. When plant-growers want to stimulate plant growth, they introduce more carbon dioxide.

CO2 that goes into the atmosphere does not stay there but is continually recycled by terrestrial plant life and earth's oceans-- the great retirement home for most terrestrial carbon dioxide.

If we are in a global warming crisis today, even the most aggressive and costly proposals for limiting industrial carbon dioxide emissions would have a negligible effect on global climate!

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#67
In reply to #66

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/16/2007 3:30 PM

Help! - not so fast. I can't even read this in one go. In any event, we cannot possibly deal with so many things at once and get anything right. But we might have some chance if we confine our attention to just one thing at a time. As we've already started on volcanoes, I think it makes sense to see whether we can agree - or at least crystallise a rational basis for our disagreement. So far as I can see, the sole residual issue is your view that CO2 from explosive volcanoes has to be treated completely differently to CO2 from other sources. That is why I addressed the general effects of explosive volcanoes in specific detail; and I thought I'd explained why separate treatment might not be necessary, so it's your turn to answer a question: how long does it take for atmospheric mixing to halve the level of excess concentration of CO2 in the upper atmosphere that follows an eruption? Once we have a good figure for that, we can agree whether it makes sense to analyse it separately.

In principle I am prepared to be convinced, but our understanding will need to be consistent with the results of the various papers that report a cooling effect in the five or more years immediately following a high-atmosphere explosive eruption, as mentioned previously.

BTW, and this is not a "lay view" - high historic correlation does equate to a high probability of continued correlation. The proper point is that, on its own, high correlation does not tell you anything about a causative relationship - it could be that one observed parameter causes the other, or it could be that some other entirely unobserved parameter is causative of both parameters. Then there is the possibility that the two events are entirely unrelated, and the correlation is a coincidence; in this event the correlation cannot be expected to continue; given credible data in the first instance, the likelihood of this third case (no causative relationship) is well modelled with standard statistical significance tests.

Your turn - finish one item, then we can sensibly examine a next single issue of your choosing

Fyz

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#68
In reply to #67

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/16/2007 4:57 PM

P.S.

I'll also briefly address one other issue, your rejection of the argument that CO2 increase is due primarily to human activity. You seem to cite some kind of statistical argument, but it seems to be of a form that applies to predictions rather than to concurrent measurements.

So far as I can determine, the situation is as follows:
# Humans have converted an unprecedented amount of the stored carbon into CO2 over the last 100 years, partly as a result of the burning of stored carbon, and partly as a result of causing reductions in the amounts that are stored in plants (e.g. deforestation) and algae (probably due to oceanic iron depletion caused by coastal development and consequent water uptake)
# The CO2 content of the atmosphere has risen very much in line with the conversion for which humans have been responsible.
# The scientific community have looked for other potential causes of the observed increase in atmospheric CO2, and have failed to find any other changes that are cumulatively of a sufficient size.
# In principle, because there has been a determined search for alternative causes, the only statistical control we should need for this is a reasonable prior period of stability during which we have data on atmospheric CO2 behaviour. For this aspect, a period of a few hundred years might be acceptable - because the crucial data is the absence of other identified potential sources.

Together, these points lead to the conclusion that human activity is the most likely cause of the increase of CO2. Likelihood (high probability) is the only possible conclusion at this stage*, and should remain so unless and until a plausible alternative cause is identified. If the correlation continues, and no alternative cause is identified, the assessed probability that mankind's activities are causal will increase. BTW, you can rest assured that there are plenty of people looking for just such a cause - some of them with quite a strong financial interest in finding it. So, until they succeed, this at least is one prop of the argument that we need to treat as correct - even if it "just feels wrong" (that's a bit how I feel about quantum electro dynamics, I suppose)
*In this respect, probability theory may be regarded here as a quantification of Occam's razor - given a choice between explanations, the simplest explanation that fits all known facts is the most likely candidate.

Another BTW - yes, it is generally agreed that we are living with a historically low level of atmospheric CO2. However, historically low does not imply that a rapid change is anything other than serious, because the present distribution of flora and fauna is adapted to just these conditions. The same applies to temperature (it is cool by historic standards) but with one additional caveat - it is possible that the mere fact that the changes are rapid will trigger unknown (and possibly unprecedented) changes in sea and air currents.

That is far more than enough from me for now - I should think everyone else is getting fed up with my poor style of writing.

Fyz

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#71
In reply to #68

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/16/2007 8:20 PM

Ok..I will give it a try.

Notwithstanding that human activity has resulted in the generation of CO2 as a result of burning stored carbon, the amount at which climatologists seem to have arrived at is by taking the amount of carbon found in say a litre or gallon of gas and then calculating the amount of CO2 that is generated when this is burned. Now my first question is this: how do they account for the incomplete combustion that we know exists in pretty well all furnaces and engines (the black smoke coming out of a badly tuned diesel engine is carbon). If infact the adjustments were made to account for this, on what basis where they made? Certainly the issue of incomplete combustion will affect how much CO2 generated by man does end up in the atmosphere.

I doubt there is oceanic iron depletion as the continuing erosion of the earth, as projected in the silts and dissolved minerals that exist in the many rivers which dump their water into the oceans, certainly would suggest the oppostite is true. Furthermore man's propensity to use iron and to discard items with iron in them would suggest that man is contributing more iron into the oceans than from natural sources.

Because the CO2 content of the atmosphere has risen in line with the conversion for which you say humans have been responsible, what other sources have been examine that could also be responsible for this increase and why were they rejected? How were these other sources accounted for in the models?

We know that in the past there have been time periods within earth's history where the projected CO2 content of the atmosphere was higher than it is today. While we can make projections as to the source of the carbon in those period, there remains some uncertainty as to why it happened. Finally when we really get down to it, the rapid rise in temperatures is reportedly associated with the 1980 to the present time period.

Notwithstanding the rise in CO2 in the atmosphere, there is a considerable amount of disagreement within the scientific community about the role CO2 plays in climate change. While it is recognized that it does have an effect, what is at question is how much importance should we place on it, given the other components of climate change that are at work.

Instead of spending time looking for other sources of CO2, perhaps they should be looking at the effect of other components such as water vapor, cosmic and solar radiation, an volcanic generated CO2, keeping in mind the CO2 from volcanoes consists of a heavy dosage at once rather than a gradual addition over time. I think it is also important to understand that if CO2 from volcanoes gets halved somehow in the upper atmosphere, why doesn't the same happen to ground-generated CO2?

To be honest, I do not believe that there has been a concerted effort to identify other possible sources of CO2. We do know that they exist from our geological records. Where did the CO2 come from in those periods? So far all I have seen is generaliztions and nothing specific.

From my basic understanding of physics (it's been awhile since I studied it ) the atomic weight of CO2 is 1.54 times that of natural air. Notwithstanding the forces that would cause the CO2 to diffuse within the atmosphere, keep in mind that many of those rpinciples are applied to a closed environment such as in a lab. While they may apply to a certain extent to our atmosphere, we need to identify the limitations. How does the CO2 that man generates make its way into the upper atmosphere without falling back or being pushed down by atmospheric pressure?

One of the peculiar aspects about the build-up of CO2 in the atmosphere is that most of the increase has occurred since the 1960 (315 ppmv to +380 ppmv today). My point is, is this increase due to man-made CO2 (what about the mega tonnes sent up between the industrial period at 1959?) or do these measurements reflect something else happening in the environment?

One comment I would like to suggest we minimize in this discussion is the inference that scientists (both pro and con) have some other non-scientific reason for taking their stand. This only deviates from the scientific purpose of the studies.

One thing I am very aware of is the tendency for large amounts of data to be different because of external sources. For instance temperature measurements over or near populated areas will be skewed from the radiated heat that is given off from those locals. Similarly CO2 measurement will be skewed depending upon where they are taken.

Being the most likely candidate is no reason for governments to implement policies that could have a significant impact on the economic well being of their citizens.

Please don't get me wrong about my position - yes I beleive global warming is happening and yes I believe the consequences from this could be catastrophic. Where I do differ from the "main stream" is that we appear to be putting all of our bets on high levels of CO2 being the root cause without fully studying and understanding what other paramters could be having the same effect. Perhaps these other parameters act as a catalyst when CO2 levels rise? Whi knows.

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#145
In reply to #71

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

12/06/2009 11:46 PM

Don't confuse molecular weight (atomic mass) with molecular density...I enjoyed most of your article. Thanks!

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#146
In reply to #145

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

12/07/2009 2:11 AM

Very good, Just the facts,

CAN WE STOP GLOBAL WARMING AND ITS CLIMATE EFFECTS?
....YES!!

To unveil the global warming DILEMA -for all population- first we have to clear out the fumes purposely spread by the news, Bush and others as Al gore, to protect the huge petrobusinesses (from fuels) and their effect in Wall street..... Now president Obama... said:

Although popular sentiment is that CO2 is causing global warming....!!!! Bla, Bla, Bla

Some Scientist wisely stated, CO2 is not a contaminant !!!!......... Which is true, since animal -all- naturally exhale it -including humans-, although it is well know that if we exceed a limiting concentration it is lethally toxic -in our garage, for example- and eventually that will happen in the near future, if we keep passively burning 85 million petrobarrels daily,

Then, we conclude that CO2 -as cool gas- is not a problem jet.


Besides, a clever Scientist point of views is that global warming is a problem from

an uncontrolled thermodynamic global system, when saying......

Personally I think the thermodynamics of the global system are just too complex .!!!.


Some how, it is true, but not so complex, if we split it the simple way, as it happens:

A) It is a fact that, Sun has been thermally in equilibrium with earth

-ever since millenniums- so we conclude that sun is not a problem, either.

B) But, atmosphere temperature increase is -as real as global disasters occurs

daily- caused by a huge source of heat that comes from some where else.

But, know only HUGE SOURCE is the wasted energy -exhausted as heat

while combusting daily a huge amount of 85 millions barrels of fuels

(plus the carbon, plus Nat GAS, plus tires rubber crump's, etc.).


Remember physic's basic law:

MATTER AS ENERGY CAN NOT BE DESTROYED -BUT TRANSFORMED ONLY-

Then, that heat goes into the atmosphere stays and accumulates there –ever since a century-

In TeraTeraTera.???..Calories causing the temperature increment of all air gases,

JUST LIKE IN A STEAM POT. NOT LIKE IN A GREEN HOUSE, WHICJ IS NOT TRUE.

SINCE the only problem is the heat that goes along with it while combusting fuels

-depleting our O2 and Ozone (OUR UV-shield) as well-

by the way -petroleum is natural biofuel too- Don't promote synthetic biofuel either.

It doesn't matter how clean is a fuel, is burns and heats atmosphere the same way.


Finally we conclude that, solution is in our hand, and remark that the only way it is: "Reducing drastically fuels consumption to cero -as energy source-", there is no much time left, we must move very fast to harvest clean, free and endless energy only, as: solar, wind, tide and hydro -even do the nuclear, too, in a safer way-.

However , there are other interrelated TERRA factors, which equilibrium has been fatally broken

by humans (in XX century) that lead us to unpleasant life and our own extinction in XXI, as:

Combustion vehicles forbidden -promote bicycles, motorcycles, electric cars and mass transport-

Limiting cities top size -say to one million, like in Germany-.

Allow white color (or light green) for roof areas 0as well land escapes and streets carpet,

All bituminous surfacing materials forbidden, because black surfaces -convert as 365 day solar heaters- causing an increment of 5 to 7 ºC in cities temperature -above, token Global warning-

- The criminal deforestation within towns, cities and lands:

Every home and skyscraper area must be at least 50% green (with trees like in ranch)

Besides, deforestation for crops and wood businesses must be strictly regulated.

If we understand that our friendly Threes -are nature's factories which transform CO2 into Oxygen (plus green matter, wood & food)-; then we conclude that a priority is

A world Reforesting Action -by billions- to replenish a healthy atmosphere, again.

WE MUST BE EARTH FRIENDS IF WE WANT A PLEASANT LIFE WITHIN A FRIENDLY EARTH.

José M Jiménez, Ms. Chem Eng
Fundación SAMBI -pro saneamiento ambiental-
México.

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#147
In reply to #146

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

12/07/2009 9:34 AM

"CO2 is not a contaminant". In normal quantities this is true. But we are looking at a very considerable excess.
(An analogy: Vitamin A is not a poison, but too much becomes poisonous).
and BTW, we could make the same argument for atmospheric methane...

Now for some checked facts:

"Then, that heat goes into the atmosphere stays and accumulates there"
This is trivially incorrect. Heat that goes into the atmosphere does not accumulate long-term - it is radiated within a few months - just like the heat input from the sun (this sort of process is absolutely essential for an equilibrium to occur).
Outgoing radiation depends on the combination of the Earth's temperature and its effective emissivity. By far the dominant cause of global warming is that the combination of CO2 and feedback effects reduces the Earth's effective emissivity.
That is the same as the radiative aspect of a conventional greenhouse. Unfortunately the conventional greenhouse is not a perfect analogy because the glass also affects convection. The effect of low-E coatings for conservatory glass is much more suitable for immediate understanding.

On reforestation: of course reforestation will help. But forests will not provide enough food for the Earth's growing populations. And, unfortunately, replacement of all forests lost in the last 100-years (an implausible task) would only absorb about 1/3 of the CO2 excess of the last 50-years.

Synthetic biofuels should be part of the solution - because the CO2 that burning them emits was absorbed from the atmosphere in a similar time-frame to that in which it is emitted. BUT we need to be careful that any growth stimulators that are used don't involve the emission of fossil-derived CO2.

BTW, plain text is easier to read than italics, capitals or emboldened text - these are suitable only for localised emphasis. And it's not considered good form to mention your qualifications unless specifically asked.
N.B. Even with the "?" I'm not convinced my alias is entirely appropriate for this forum, but I'm rather stuck with it - having brought it with me from another place (where such was the norm) before realising.

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#70
In reply to #67

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/16/2007 7:10 PM

You are correct in saying I believe it should be treated differently. The gas is superheated so it gets a lot of help to get up into the upper atmosphere where the winds disperse it and diffusion forces then set it. Ground-sourced CO2 is developed at a much lower temperature and so it has more difficulty is getting to the upper atmosphere than the gas from volcanoes. I am not sure if I can explain that point any clearer.

Now if the CO2 emitted to the upper atmosphere from a volcanic eruption eventually makes its way to the lower atmosphere (in order to halve it, it has to go somewhere), then why doesn't human-generated CO2 get halved as well once it makes its way to the upper atmosphere?

The other point relating to this issue is that human generated CO2 is constant and emiited say on a daily basis wheras volcanic erutions spew a large amount at one time rather than gradually over time. Perhpas I can use this analogy. A river might be getting polluted from a leak in an oil tank which flows at the rate of .01 bbls per day. Over the course of a year this equates to 3.65 bbls each year. Now if a person were to dump half a barrel at once into the stream, the result would be quite different in that with that influx of additional oil, the natural environmental processes that were handling the .01 bbls per day become overwhelmed.

I believe that the same observation can be applied to periods of increased volcanic activity.

With regards to volcanic eruptions, there are two issues that affect cooling. The first of course is the dust that gets ejected up into the atmosphere a la Mt. St. Helens etc. There are also other explosive erutpions that are not accompanied by such an amount of physical particles but do emit substantial amounts of super-heated gases (up to 1,000 degrees C). So we cannot generalize about explosive volcanoes and their effect on the climate. Most literature however do identify a two-year cooling following a large explosive eruption. In one case, the eruption of Mt. Tambora in 1815 resulted in crop failures and famine in North America.

Continued correlation is one thing - to equate the correlation to a cause is another thing. My point is that a high correlation should result in further study to understand why that correlation exists - perhaps it is simply a statistical anomaly due to filtering of the data? It could also be the result of some unknown parameter (as you properly identified) which should be identified and then examined.

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#73
In reply to #70

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/18/2007 9:18 AM

Regarding CO2 distribution - I fear you are being disingenuous here, but I will explain the position in case this is a misunderstanding. For a given total amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, there will be an equilibrium* distribution, with different proportionate concentrations at different heights. Over time, the distribution will tend towards this level. Clearly, the only possible reason for treating volcanic CO2 emissions differently from other emissions is if it results in a departure from this condition. Now, eventually equilibrium will be restored, at which point the treatment of CO2 from the various sources can be identical. This means that the period over which we need to consider the eruptive CO2 differently from low-level CO2 depends on how long it takes for an equilibrium distribution to be re-established. If the redistribution time is short, we only need to consider the CO2 separately over that short redistribution time.

So, yes, the CO2 distribution from low-level CO2 will tend to equilibrate over the same time-scale as the high-level CO2 - this just represents the part of the process that never needed to be addressed separately in the first instance.

Yes, indeed, the observation can and should be applied to periods of intense volcanic activity. Equally, we need to know over how long a period we should take the data. I think you are now saying it is two years. That would mean that, from about two years we can treat the eruptive contribution just the same as any other CO2 contribution; on that basis, the disruption due to volcanic action would have settled out by 1996, and we can treat the subsequent data without concern that it is distorted by the effects of volcanoes. (In any event, the data in your reference was actually one of the inputs to any models that have been checked since about 1998, so such separation of CO2 origins as is valid has already been taken into account).

Fyz

*Note that I only talk about equilibrium of the distribution. Any continuing addition to the overall level will of course affect absolute concentrations (and, indeed, low-level contributions will take about two years to equilibrate, so there will always be some offset from any theoretical state of equilibrium - but this can also be modelled).

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#75
In reply to #73

Re: Global Warming: Just the Facts, Please!

02/18/2007 2:31 PM

I don't disagree with you, however I believe that the level of equilibrium is not static but rather flunctuates. I am glad to read that you write "with different proportionate concentrations at different heights" as in another forum on this site I've been told in many ways that the concentration of CO2 is the same because of diffusion and that analytical results from samples taken from air balloons prove it. I have alwys looked at the atmosphere not to be fully homogeneous.

The reason for accounting for volcanic gases IMHO is because those gases are ejected immediately into the layer where greenhouse gases lie (5,000 - 7,000 meters above sea level). On the otherhand, man-generated CO2 (at gorund level) takes time to reach that altitude. Hence I believe that on a molecule-to-molecule basis, CO2 from volcanoes has a more important an immediate impact on the green house gas effect simply because close to 100% of it ends up at that elevation all at one time. Yes equilibrium will eventually be restores, but a far greater percentage of ground-generated CO2 will be absobed faster into the carbon cycle than will volcanic generated CO2.

Now the period where dramatic increases in CO2 have been observed is from 1950 onwards. (as seen from Mauna Loa observatory). So we have to ask oursel ves what happened to cause this? In order to answer this question, we need to identify all possible sources of CO2, what rates these sources have been contributing to the greenhouse gas layer (remember 5,000 to 7,000 M above sea levels), and explain what effect these contributions have on the rate at which the system reaches equilibrium.

To me, the general classification categories are two: natural and man made.

The natural classification is subdivided by numerous sources - evaporation from oceans, plant decay, volcanoes, animal matter, respiration;

Man-made subdivisions are: respiration, burning of fossil fuels;

Now, most of the sources of CO2 noted origniate at ground level where carbon "sinks" absorb a portion in leaving the remainder to diffuse within the atmosphere, where it congregates in the greenhouse gas layer.

One item that we do not observe in literature is the CO2 from aircraft. I do not know what the total annual amount of CO2 from aircraft is but I believe its effect on the green house gas layer is more significant that you or I breathing or a cow ****ing in the field. Why? For the same reason I cited for volcanic CO2. Both are ejected directly into or above the green house gas layer than any ground-generated CO2. Furthermore, the apparent increase in CO2 content of the atmosphere relates to a sharp increase in air travel (yes yes I know...correlation does not prove causaulity!! ). However for any climate model to be considered, these two sources should be given more importance than I believe they currently are.

The two year eruption time frame is appropriate per volcanoe. If we have say five significant volcanic eruptions once a year, the effect of the eruptions would last for ten years. As I mentioned, there has been an increase in volcanic activity starting in the 1990's compared to the pre 1980 levels. In fact the increase in activity rose from about 60 a year to 85-95 a year.

Your analysis might be appropriate if volcanic eruptions were isolated incidents. With a regular contribution of CO2 from volcanoes whose effect is estimated to last 2 years, there is a continuous addition of that gas that must be accounted for both volumetrically and time wise.

So perhaps the rise in global temperatures is the result of 1) increased volcanic activity; 2) increased air travel; 3) increased radiation from the sun. If this hypothesis were true, then cutting back on CO2 emiiions will not have the effect people believe it will. Can we afford to expose our economies to such a financial burden?

I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall when the first climate models were run. My guess is that those first runs did not result in what we are seeing today, so the parameters were "adjusted" probably many times so that the results reflect what we see today. Tinkering in this fashion is what my main argument against accepting the results from the models or infact any model that is built in this fashion. Why? Simply put the output is telling me what the designer of the model wants me to see. It is no proof that what I see today is the result from the relationships depicted in that model.

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