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Tell me again why I should believe CO2 levels are the main problem?
Posted by: McQ on Wednesday, February 28, 2007

As Joliphant at RedState (where I grabbed this) says, sometimes a picture is worth 10,000 words.

Love to hear an explanation from the "settled science" crowd, or is this too inconvenient a truth?
 
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You just refuse to accept the reality of Global Warming! At this point, the only reason for not believing is a willful ignorance. Perhaps you missed the news, but on Sunday, the consensus of scientists supporting Global Warming grew even larger. With the winning of an Academy Award by Al Gore(PBUH) for his magnum opus(or ouvre as some would say), the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and SCIENCES joined in the sacred task of saving our beloved Earth from you pollution mongers.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
When is the "Jolly Green Gore" going to be canonized? My only other question is, will Sainthood be enough?
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
You just refuse to accept the reality of Global Warming!
Heh ... not true, Tim. I accept the fact of climate change (it is getting warmer), I just don’t accept the current "settled science" explanation. Of course that makes me a heretic, but I can live with that.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Interesting graph. I really started looking into the details of global warming because my electrician got mad and refused to work on my house after I made the comment that I didn’t really care about AGW. I think my comment was, "...mass extinctions happen every 60 million years and we are about 5 million overdue.

Anyway, my search has led me to the following conclusions and I am wondering if they are accurate. I emailed DrGlobalChange@gcrio.org about a week ago, but he has not responded.

About 95% of the CO2 in the atmosphere is natural and 5% man-made.

CO2 is about 0.04% of the atmosphere. So man-made CO2 is about 0.002% of the atmosphere. That 0.002% of the atmosphere is driving AGW.

But Water Vapor and CO2 contribute more to the greenhouse effect than other elements in the atmosphere.

I have read reports that say Water Vapor accounts for about 60% ot 95% of the greenhouse effect, while CO2 accounts for 5% to 26% of it.

Worst case scenario, of that 26% contribution to the greenhouse effect by CO2 95% of it is natural and an additional 5% is man-made.

So at this time, humans are contributing an extra 0.25% to 1.3% to the greenhouse effect.

Anyone know if that is accurate?

The next issue I am researching is variation of the sun. I am wondering if it varies between around 0.25%
 
Written By: OdysseusInRTP
URL: http://
You’re ignoring settled science in favor of your own ignorant bias.

But maybe, just maybe if you buy enough carbon credits to offset your energy use, you can make a difference!

New bumper sticker slogan: Drive an SUV? Then Plant a Tree!
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
When is the "Jolly Green Gore" going to be canonized? My only other question is, will Sainthood be enough
Richard Cohen just did it....
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
While I’m sympathetic to the argument that global warming is not man-made, this graph is misleading by the way it’s drawn — for both sides of the issue. First, look at the y-axis for CO2: it ranges from 290-350; were it drawn from 0-350, it would show a much flatter curve. Likewise for the other curves: scales have been selected to allow the curves to show correlation.
 
Written By: Ed
URL: http://
Wikipedia has an interesting article regarding solar variation and global warming that lays out the various studies regarding this aspect. It doesn’t seem like there are many scientists in the field willing to say that it is responsible for more than 20% or so of observed warming. This passage discusses the posted graph (I think, the sourcing from the original blog isn’t clear):
In 1991, Knud Lassen of the Danish Meteorological Institute in Copenhagen and his colleague Eigil Friis-Christensen found a strong correlation between the length of the solar cycle and temperature changes throughout the northern hemisphere. Initially, they used sunspot and temperature measurements from 1861 to 1989, but later found that climate records dating back four centuries supported their findings. This relationship appeared to account for nearly 80 per cent of the measured temperature changes over this period (see graph.[25] Damon and Laut, however, show that when the graphs are corrected for filtering errors, the sensational agreement with the recent global warming, which drew worldwide attention, has totally disappeared. Nevertheless, the authors and other researchers keep presenting the old misleading graph.[24] Note that the prior link to "graph" is one such example of this.

On May 6, 2000, however, New Scientist magazine reported that Lassen and astrophysicist Peter Thejll had updated Lassen’s 1991 research and found that while the solar cycle still accounts for about half the temperature rise since 1900, it fails to explain a rise of 0.4 °C since 1980. "The curves diverge after 1980," Thejll said, "and it’s a startlingly large deviation. Something else is acting on the climate.... It has the fingerprints of the greenhouse effect."[27]
And here’s a question, if solar variation really does account for a significant portion of global warming, along with the greenhouse effect, and we can’t change solar variation, but can change the greenhouse effect, doesn’t that mean that we need an even more aggressive response to the greenhouse effect to compensate for the portion of global warming we can’t stop?
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
And here’s a question, if solar variation really does account for a significant portion of global warming, along with the greenhouse effect, and we can’t change solar variation, but can change the greenhouse effect, doesn’t that mean that we need an even more aggressive response to the greenhouse effect to compensate for the portion of global warming we can’t stop?
If the figurehead of the Global Warming movement can’t even be bothered to decrease the amount of energy he uses and contributes to the greenhouse effect (preferring to use credits to "offset" which does nothing to solve the problem) then I can only conclude that an aggressive response to the greenhouse effect is not warranted.

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
timactual said:
With the winning of an Academy Award by Al Gore(PBUH) for his magnum opus(or ouvre as some would say), the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and SCIENCES joined in the sacred task of saving our beloved Earth from you pollution mongers.
And I’m still laughing. Just out of the sense of relief for the planet being saved and all.
 
Written By: Linda Morgan
URL: http://
Shark:

First of all, you don’t know whether or not Gore has decreased his energy use. The only information out there is that he apparently uses an above-average amount for some reason. He may have significantly reduced his energy consumption (he installed solar panels and some wind generation capability, after all).

Secondly, aren’t ideas stronger than their proponents? If Ronald Reagan had gotten caught working against anti-communist movements or raising taxes (oh wait, he did that second one), would you expect Republicans to just stop believing that Communism is bad or that taxes should be low? Because Washington and Jefferson owned slaves, does that mean that American notions of freedom and liberty are farcical? Of course not.
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
Sigh, that first "decreased" should be "increased".
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
First of all, you don’t know whether or not Gore has increased his energy use. The only information out there is that he apparently uses an above-average amount for some reason. He may have significantly reduced his energy consumption (he installed solar panels and some wind generation capability, after all).
If he’s not making the sacrifices he’s practically demanding the rest of us make, then he’s a hypocrite. That includes a smaller home, no private jets, etc. etc. In fact, his spokesman said Gore was carbon neutral. When he starts running a carbon negative footprint, call me. Installing solar panels on a huge energy guzzling mansion is just a show for the dupes who follow him. Or instead of paying for offsets, just use less energy!
Secondly, aren’t ideas stronger than their proponents?
Sometimes, but actions speak loudest of all.

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Ed, I’d say it isn’t misleading at all. It clearly shows a change in solar activity is followed in almost every period by a like change in the deviation in the terrestrial mean temperature variation from the datum.

There is no such correlation to be seen with changes in the CO2 level.

The graph would only be misleading if the vertical scales applied to the CO2 and temp variation readings were changed as you moved left to right in such a way as to create a correlation where none existed.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
Badger wrote:
And here’s a question, if solar variation really does account for a significant portion of global warming, along with the greenhouse effect, and we can’t change solar variation, but can change the greenhouse effect, doesn’t that mean that we need an even more aggressive response to the greenhouse effect to compensate for the portion of global warming we can’t stop?
No, it means for the same expense, we have a smaller return, making it less sensible to take on the expense in the first place.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
To be fair, this graph has problems. The correlation between sunspot activity and temperature breaks down after 1980, and there are other problems in the sunspot data in this graph. However, the ironic point is that as many problems as the sunspot/temperature correlation has, it is still a much better fit over the past 120 years than the CO2/temperature correlation.

Here’s the elephant in the room which the Anthropogenic Global Warming (CO2 forcing) camp ignores: How do you explain the 1915-1940 increase in temperature by CO2 forcing? You simply can’t. Something else was obviously at work then, and the gains since 1970 have been at the same rate as from 1915-1940. So why is the AGW camp blaming CO2 for 1970-present when the same thing was being done by something else from 1915-1940?
 
Written By: BrianOfAtlanta
URL: http://
Brian,

It could just be a natural variation or the result of a feedback loop. Here is a graph showing the bump in the context of more recent temperature changes. The current increases are much more dramatic and are not tapering in a manner indicating that a 1940-style peak is being reached.
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
I am willing to believe that the difference since 1980 is due to CO2, but the point Badger, is that if observed warming is only about 30% due to CO2, (which is what a large number of consensus scientists believe) then energy policy, or carbon policy will have little to no effect. That would mean you can be in the consensus and believe in the lower ranges of the projected increase. It also means that the likely changes are significantly below catastrophic in the first place, and that if they are catastrophic we should be adjusting the climate in other ways to mitigate the issue.

Meanwhile there are large areas of policy that could have much larger effects, such as land use changes.

That doesn’t even begin to address whether we should even try and avoid warming of the scale likely to occur if that is true. We have been warmer in recent centuries and it was not disastrous, one could argue that on net humanity benefited. Greenland was once Green and the earth was fine and sea levels roughly where they are now. Those are questions sites such as Real Climate seem unwilling to address and they need to be.

Note, everything I just said fits the consensus of the IPCC. That is as opposed to Al Gore and James Hansen who are outside of the consensus. I find it odd that this fetish about the consensus only applies one way. If you are outside the consensus of the IPCC on the low end one is an irresponsible denier, if one is outside of the consensus and believe far more extreme things one is a valued global citizen who deserves to be feted at all the swankest Manhattan cocktail parties.
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
...aren’t ideas stronger than their proponents?
Sometimes, but actions speak loudest of all.
Again, that is a ridiculous argument that I doubt you would extend to people who agree with you politically. A person’s actions may indicate how much a person believes in the ideas they claim to believe, but whether or not those ideas are valid in a larger context is entirely dependent on the merits of the ideas themselves.

Does Jim Baker mean Christian morality is impossible?
Do Cory Feldman’s anti-drug PSA’s (which he made while regularly using cocaine) mean that cocaine is good for you?
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
Again, that is a ridiculous argument that I doubt you would extend to people who agree with you politically. A person’s actions may indicate how much a person believes in the ideas they claim to believe, but whether or not those ideas are valid in a larger context is entirely dependent on the merits of the ideas themselves.
If the idea isn’t enough to motivate it’s greatest proponent- especially one who’s so familiar with and steeped in the glorious, venerated SCIENCE (cue angelic chorus) that he made a movie about it- then the idea isn’t that strong.

You know when I’ll take global warming seriously? When it’s proponents start inconveniencing themselves for their idea.
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
I’m not too bothered by the less than perfect corelation in solar activity vs temp either. Take the first discontnuity.

Solar activity goes up, temps don’t—but it’s after 1883 and the eruption of Krakatoa.

Volcanic dust forcing has has very known, calculable effects. I’d bet that explains the discontinuity.

There are probably other discrete events accounting for the other deviation from exact correlations as well.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
Badger, but isn’t that graph misleading? It only shows from 1860, so unlike the prior graph, it is attempting not to show correlation, but changes in long term underlying trends then starting at a relatively low point is pretty deceptive.

I am not accusing you of wanting to deceive, I am just pointing out that without some kind of longer time series we are deceived.
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
Lance,

1860 was when McQ’s RedState graph started, so I posted a graph with a similar timeframe but showing more recent temperature data that puts the 1940’s bump in context compared to current warming. If you’d like to recommend a graph that provides a more representative timeframe please do so.
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
I only meant it doesn’t argue for a long term trend, it does show that recent temperature has continued warming. It does not however account for recent leveling off, especially since 1998 or the fact that in only two years the ocean seems to have lost a fifth of its present temperature increase. Neither of which disproves global warming, but both are difficult to square with the models as well.
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
I’m unaware of this leveling off or the temperature decrease in the oceans. Here is a graph from NASA Climate expert James Hansen showing the temperature increase in the oceans over the last decade.

Here is a graph showing the temeperature forcing effect of "solar irradiance" in proportion to other climate forcings.
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
Apologies not read the preceding discussion (time constraints) but I was surprised by the coincidence. Yesterday a Finnish colleague of ours gave a talk about the techniques of long term trend analysis and chasing small signals in noisy data. He showed this graph and used it as an example of problems in smoothing data to retrieve underlying trends. The basic smoothing used a sliding filter with components of [1 2 2 2 1] to give weight to the data that lies within the centre of the filter. Of course as you move the filter along towards the edge of your data set the filter window is no longer full of data, there are blanks at the end. This is always a problem when looking at time series and how to deal with this is a major issue. Some people just make their last data point of their smoothed data the point where the filter window is last filled. In this paper the authors tried a different tac. They reduced the size of the filter as they approached the final points; first [1 2 2 1] and then [1 2 1] etc. This meant that the final (and I presume the first few) data points are weighted very differently in the smoothing process than the bulk of the data points. One could consider that this is analogous to a sliding scale. Therefore one should treat the final few data with caution.

My colleague (who works on long term trends in ionospheric F2 layer data) then showed how by changing just one term in the smoothing process (e.g. swapping F10.7 radio flux for sunspot number as a proxy of solar activity) you could alter the appearance of the long term trend. It was very interesting.

As a caution with that graph and coming from someone who thinks that there is a solar component to climate change I would offer a few notes:

1) correlation does not equal causation - and that goes for the CO2 folks as well
2) be careful how you smooth your data - do it carefully enough and you can make any two things correlate
3) should the length of the solar cycle indicate the strength of the cycle on a year to year basis? Or is this comparing apples and oranges? I should know the answer to this but I cannot remember - I suspect (vaguely remember) that a long cycle is correlated with higher activity.
4) it is importnat to determine the ’best’ proxy for solar activity as one can generate different trend results with different proxies. Of course this also depends on your definition of ’best’ so...
5) it is important to establish (and test) a viable method for solar influence - some amplification process for example - since simple solar irradiance will not do the trick. One distinct possibility is the cosmic-ray/cloud theories of Svensmark. The biggest problem at the moment is in detecting any trends in cosmic ray-flux data (as opposed to supposed proxies), the anlyses I have seen (such as here) do not support that one exists. Of course we know how dodgy trend detection can be so perhaps one does exist and will be found...

For those who worry that climate sceptics are closed out by the science community I believe that this month’s edition of Physics World his dedicated to climate change and even has a profile of Richard Lindzen. I have not seen it myself yet as I must wait for it to fly across the Atlantic burning lots of fossil fuels.
 
Written By: Kav
URL: http://livingrealworld.blogspot.com
I would be interested to see the increase of temperature on the surface of Mars thrown into the mix. I’ve heard here and there about global warming on the red planet, which leads me to believe the solar activity theory.

Also, as temperature rises, decomposition increases, no? So is it possible that an increase in CO2 is the result of global warming, not the cause?

 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://socalconservative.blogspot.com
Ronnie: Decomposition of what? I don’t think that there’s really any disagreement that CO2 levels are rising due to man-made causes (increased hydrocarbon use + destruction of carbon sinks).
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
Decomposition of what?
Plant and animal life. All that phytoplankton we’re killing off and all those rainforests we’re clear-cutting. ;)

Perhaps the rate of decomposition in areas with historically lower temperatures has increased due to rising temperatures. For instance, the phytoplankton in artic waters. First the hole in the ozone layer kills ’em, then global warming cooks ’em. Just a thought.
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://socalconservative.blogspot.com
I don’t think that there’s really any disagreement that CO2 levels are rising due to man-made causes (increased hydrocarbon use + destruction of carbon sinks).
I think that’s the whole point. I think there is disagreement about that. For instance, if sunspot activity raised the temperature, isn’t it possible that the increase in temp would see a corresponding increase in water vapor, which, of course, would put more CO2 into the atmosphere causing more temperature increase?

What would man have to do with that cycle?

So far no one has successfully broken out man’s supposed part in this from the background noise to anyone’s satisfaction, yet somehow the science is ’settled’ and man is the culprit.

 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
If you’d like to recommend a graph that provides a more representative timeframe please do so.
How about this one?


Not that it matters really, we apparently don’t have to argue about this anymore, the problem can be solved for up to $400 per person.
 
Written By: shasta
URL: http://
McQ:

You’re right that the world is full of natural negative feedback loops that have the effect of taking a problem and making it worse. The methane being released from the melting Siberian tundra is set to be a distressingly illustrative example of this. However, you might ask yourself, assuming that these natural feedback loops have existed for tens of thousands of years, and previous warming cycles have occured, how come these feedback loops weren’t activated then and cause warming at the temperature and carbon levels we’re seeing today? How come it’s not until the industrial era that these natural feedback loops come into play?

The reason I thought that manmade carbon dioxide generation wasn’t really disputed is because it seems to me that the amount of manmade carbon dioxide generated is a pretty well known figure (as is the amount of carbon sink destruction) and that if man really wasn’t generating enough to explain the rising measured CO2 levels that’d be pretty easy to show. I’d always assumed that climate skeptics drew the line at tying the rising CO2 levels to the rising temperature levels, since that is seemingly harder to demonstrate and an incomplete explanation anyway (since it ignores other greenhouse gases and albedo effects, for starters).
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
How come it’s not until the industrial era that these natural feedback loops come into play?
Maybe they have in the past, but they haven’t been recorded? Or maybe they’re cyclical- just in a long cycle?

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
The reason I thought that manmade carbon dioxide generation wasn’t really disputed is because it seems to me that the amount of manmade carbon dioxide generated is a pretty well known figure (as is the amount of carbon sink destruction) and that if man really wasn’t generating enough to explain the rising measured CO2 levels that’d be pretty easy to show.
Well I think disputing that notion was the entire point of Dale’s post here.

And as of yet, no one has offered satisfactory answers to his points as to how previous levels of CO2, vastly higher than today, managed to build on earth without man’s input, and then dissipate as well:
The bottom line is that we’ve had much higher CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere in the past. Currently, the atmospheric concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere is about 378 parts per million (PPM). During the Jurassic period, CO2 concentration was at 1800 PPM. During the Cambrian, it was 7000 PPM.

And yet, despite CO2 concentrations 7 to 20 times current, there was no runaway greenhouse effect that threatened all life. Indeed, the main cause of the mass extinction at the Cambrian/Ordovician boundary period appears to have been global cooling.

So, if the CO2 problem is the danger the environmentalists tell us it is, then we need to know why massively higher concentrations of CO2 in the Cambrian and Jurassic periods didn’t result in a runaway greenhouse effect then, but will now.
Any suggestions?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Don’t you guys see? Our society is out of control, and this graph shows it perfectly! Wasteful Americans who drive around in gas-guzzling SUV’s* have managed to affect the sun now!

*Unless said energy hogs pay protection money in the form of carbon offsets. Then they’re humanitarians.
 
Written By: Matt
URL: http://intermissionphoto.com
I’d always assumed that climate skeptics drew the line at tying the rising CO2 levels to the rising temperature levels ...
I believe that skeptics draw the line at "drawing the line" based on political bias and the use of a priori knowledge to shape scientific fact. "An incomplete explanation" is not the concern of a skeptic, but rather blind certitude in the face of "ugly facts" (to borrow from Thomas Huxley.)

Hmm. Perhaps "An Incomplete Explanation" would have been a better title for Al Gore’s Oscar winner.
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://
I think this gives a good picture of the carbon dioxide levels Dale discusses. I think Dale is attacking a straw man with the whole "treaten all life" canard. I don’t know of a lot of people who argue that global warming is just going to scorch all life off the planet. But it’s going to make things pretty unpleasand and disrupt a lot of the foundations that the 6 billion people on Earth rely upon. 50% of Bangladesh going underwater wouldn’t make the dinosaurs extinct, but it would displace tens of millions of people, lead to a food crisis in SE Asia and destabilize the region.
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
"Heh ... not true, Tim. I accept the fact of climate change"

It is not sufficient to accept just climate change, you must accept, totally, completely, and without reservation, the complete Global Warming canon. Anything less is merely a mockery of The Truth.

*********************

"But maybe, just maybe if you buy enough carbon credits to offset your energy use, you can make a difference!"

*Ahem* Now that you mention it, I just happen to have a few carbon credits that I may be persuaded to part with for a modest gesture of appreciation.

******************************

"doesn’t that mean that we need an even more aggressive response to the greenhouse effect to compensate for the portion of global warming we can’t stop?"

************************
"Because Washington and Jefferson owned slaves, does that mean that American notions of freedom and liberty are farcical?"

In some circles, yes.

By the way, do you think Gore has fixed the plumbing in his tenant house yet?


That reminds me of the story of the flea, uh, "servicing" an elephant. A doubling of the flea’s most vigorous efforts will still leave the elephant unsatisfied.

*********************************
Linda Morgan

Thank you. I aim to please, just as the above mentioned flea does. Evidently, though, I have had somewhat more success.

**********************

"You know when I’ll take global warming seriously? When it’s proponents start inconveniencing themselves for their idea."

Hear, hear! I would like to make a modest proposal to those who think we should all sacrifice to reduce our CO2 emissions. Inspired by the example of Mahareeshi Mahesh Yogi, I think that all disciples of Global Warming should set a time where they can all, in unison, have a 10 minute moratorium on exhaling. That is only 1/144 of a day. I realize such a small time period will not have much effect on total CO2 emission, but think of the inspirational and motivational effect it will have on the world!
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
AAARRGHH!
Editing error!
should be;
********************************

"doesn’t that mean that we need an even more aggressive response to the greenhouse effect to compensate for the portion of global warming we can’t stop?"

That reminds me of the story of the flea, uh, "servicing" an elephant. A doubling of the flea’s most vigorous efforts will still leave the elephant unsatisfied.

***********************
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
"Because Washington and Jefferson owned slaves, does that mean that American notions of freedom and liberty are farcical?"

In some circles, yes.
And do you agree with these "circles" timactual?
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
the consensus of scientists supporting Global Warming grew even larger
It matters not if 100% of scientist agree on something. Just because they all agree does not make it so. Science is not consensus, it either is or it isn’t. The history of science is littered with disproven and discarded "consensus" theories.
 
Written By: Jay Evans
URL: http://
"CO2 is about 0.04% of the atmosphere. So man-made CO2 is about 0.002% of the atmosphere. That 0.002% of the atmosphere is driving AGW.

But Water Vapor and CO2 contribute more to the greenhouse effect than other elements in the atmosphere.

I have read reports that say Water Vapor accounts for about 60% ot 95% of the greenhouse effect, while CO2 accounts for 5% to 26% of it.

Worst case scenario, of that 26% contribution to the greenhouse effect by CO2 95% of it is natural and an additional 5% is man-made.

So at this time, humans are contributing an extra 0.25% to 1.3% to the greenhouse effect."

I would really appeciate it if any believer in AGW would give me their thoughts on these numbers.

 
Written By: OdysseusInRTP
URL: http://
"The curves diverge after 1980," Thejll said, "and it’s a startlingly large deviation. Something else is acting on the climate.... It has the fingerprints of the greenhouse effect."
Holy crap! So Reaganomics really did cause global warming?
 
Written By: Jeff the Baptist
URL: http://jeffthebaptist.blogspot.com
"The curves diverge after 1980," Thejll said, "and it’s a startlingly large deviation. Something else is acting on the climate.... It has the fingerprints of the greenhouse effect."
No, since the presence of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere in the past is known, and there is no concommittant greenhouse effect in that past, and there is no theorized offsetting factor which vanished in 1980, there is no reason to think it is a greenhouse gas related greenhouse effect.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
Odysseus:

I have no idea what sources your citing, so a response isn’t really possible.
 
Written By: Badger
URL: http://
Badger,

Sorry, I assumed the numbers were pretty common. I have picked them up around the way. These are from Wikipedia and they are close to the numbers I have used above.

http://wikipedia.org

When we do this using volume-percentages of the gases given above, we get that, by mass-fraction% (m%), the mass% composition of the atmosphere is 78.084 V% x [28.014/28.97] = about 75.51 m% nitrogen, etc. Accepted mass fraction % figures (since the gases do NOT act perfectly as ideal gases, as was assumed for this calculation) are:[citation needed]

75.523% nitrogen
23.133% oxygen
1.288% argon
0.053% carbon dioxide
0.001267% neon
0.00029% methane
0.00033% krypton
0.000724% helium
0.0000038 % hydrogen

http://wikipedia.org


On Earth, the major natural greenhouse gases are water vapor, which causes about 36-70% of the greenhouse effect (not including clouds); carbon dioxide, which causes 9-26%; methane, which causes 4-9%, and ozone, which causes 3-7%.


http://wikipedia.org

Today CO2 makes up only about 0.03% of the atmosphere, and the highest estimates are that it could rise to 0.09% by the year 2100 as a result of human activities.

 
Written By: OdysseusInRTP
URL: http://
Badger,

Since you seem to trust this source I’ll use this graph for a representative period in recorded history.

I don’t really like it since by smushing them all together it gives a sense of "consensus" where there is really a huge difference. Many of the studies that are referenced on this graph show we are not in an anomalous period, including the two most recent studies. The black line is especially misleading because it is not smoothed. Once again, that doesn’t prove that we have nothing to fear in the future, but it does show that there is nothing inherently strange about the climate changes so far. I should note that these reconstructions look very different than the "hockey stick", though Mann’s studies are included and when formatted in this manner don’t look so hockey stickish without even taking into account ongoing concern about the models themselves which are being defended not by opening up the data and taking account of the criticism, but by saying other models agree. Well as a close examination of these studies show, they agree broadly, but specifically they do not. The differences that remain are where the controversy lies and Real Climate, which includes Dr. Mann keep obscuring that fact.

Another problem is the focus on "climate science." Well there are whole bunch of disciplines which touch on this area of study, and are routinely ignored as being from people who are not climate scientists. That is silly. If geologists note that their data do not support an element of the discussion that is very relevant, but the field is very resistant to such outside evidence, which is very unscientific.

History and archeology are less obvious, but crucial areas. Since my background is history, I find it astonishing that a claim can be made that a warmer world is definitely a major problem. The example mentioned earlier of Greenland being a prime example. How can climatologists with a straight face claim that the world was definitely not warmer, at least in Europe and North America, than now? Everything we see in such studies point to the conclusion that it was. That may be wrong, but it can’t be waved away with a sneer about the consensus. Nor do I believe that such a claim is out of the consensus, it surely is within the full range of it if we look at the temperature data in the link above. How can the retreat of the Greenland ice sheet be so confidently asserted to be a disastrous scenario given that a mere few hundred years ago it was far smaller? It may make intuitive sense that it would be, but the stubborn fact is that in the relevant fields it can be shown it wasn’t at that time. Nor can we say definitively that global temperatures are what cause the sheet to expand and decline. Recent data shows that the trends in Greenland that were giving everybody such a scare have gone disappeared. Why? We don’t know, and that is what the consensus scientists are telling us.

Here is a graph showing the temeperature forcing effect of "solar irradiance" in proportion to other climate forcings.
Except that the actual forcings effects are in dispute. They were arrived at in a manner that is pretty much data mining. Many scientists dispute them.
Here is a graph from NASA Climate expert James Hansen showing the temperature increase in the oceans over the last decade.
Yes and I think the data is good, but the graph stops before the recent dip. I should also note that this discussion is about the consensus. Hansen lies outside the scientific consensus. Shouldn’t that be noted when calling him an expert? I thought being outside the consensus makes one not an expert?

From Climate Science:
Lyman, J. M., J. K. Willis, and G. C. Johnson (2006), Recent cooling of the upper ocean, Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L18604, doi:10.1029/2006GL027033.

As stated in that paper,

“The decrease represents a substantial loss of heat over a 2-year period, amounting to about one fifth of the long-term upper-ocean heat gain between 1955 and 2003 reported by Levitus et al. [2005].”

In addition, even with the earlier ocean warming, this is what was found in the paper

Willis, J. K., D. Roemmich, and B. Cornuelle (2004), Interannual variability in upper ocean heat content, temperature, and thermosteric expansion on global scales, J. Geophys. Res., 109, C12036, doi:10.1029/2003JC002260.

” Maps of yearly heat content anomaly show patterns of warming commensurate with ENSO variability in the tropics, but also show that a large part of the trend in global, oceanic heat content is caused by regional warming at midlatitudes in the Southern Hemisphere. ”

They report that,

“……a strong, fairly linear warming trend is visible in the Southern Hemisphere, centered on 40°S. This region accounts for a large portion of the warming in the global average.”

Also,

“……..the warming around 40°S appears to be much steadier over the course of the time series, as seen in Figure 7. In addition, this warming extends deeper and is more uniform over the water column than the signal in the tropics. ”

Thus the actual global ocean warming reported in the IPCC SPM over the last several decades occured in just a relatively limited portion of the oceans and through depth such that the heat was not as readily avaiable to the atmosphere as it would be if the warming was more spatially uniform.
Both of these papers were much discussed and have not been denied. Neither disproves the consensus (which is the point made by warming alarmists) but they do show the science is unsettled on many key areas. These findings are not controversial.
However, you might ask yourself, assuming that these natural feedback loops have existed for tens of thousands of years, and previous warming cycles have occured, how come these feedback loops weren’t activated then and cause warming at the temperature and carbon levels we’re seeing today? How come it’s not until the industrial era that these natural feedback loops come into play?
Actually many of those loops are disputed, but let us assume they are not. Your argument works against you. The point is that in the past we have had warmer times, and after the warming the carbon increased, or at least that is what many geologists and others claim. Thus carbon was not a major factor by this line of reasoning. Your argument assumes it was. These natural feedback loops did come into play, and they didn’t cause runaway warming despite what todays models claim. This may be an area for which there is an explanation, but so far I have seen none proffered.
But it’s going to make things pretty unpleasand and disrupt a lot of the foundations that the 6 billion people on Earth rely upon. 50% of Bangladesh going underwater wouldn’t make the dinosaurs extinct, but it would displace tens of millions of people, lead to a food crisis in SE Asia and destabilize the region.
It could also improve a lot of the foundations upon which we rely.

Still, that is an out of consensus view. It may be correct anyway, but then so could Lindzen, but the consensus does not argue that such drastic changes in sea levels will occur.

There are so many other issues of import. Mann recently made a startling admission:
…..Until we are sure how climate change impacts El Nino, regional climate change forecasts over most regions of the world are likely to remain of somewhat limited utility. Its important to keep all of this in perspective.
He certainly should. It would be gratifying if he and Hansen admitted this kind of thing more often. The fact is we don’t live in a global climate, but in regional ones, and the global warming trend and its effects at a local and regional level are very shaky. So most of the predictions about the consequences of climate change assume that the regional effects are of less importance. Greenland’s ice sheet however doesn’t care about global temperatures, but on the specific interaction in its regional climate. It could very well increase in size for all we know.

Many papers, and I will get the links for you if you wish, both believe in global warming and that CO2 is a major component, and are squarely within the consensus such as it exists, but feel that CO2 is vastly exaggerated as the prime cause (around 30%) and even then is dwarfed by other regional forcings (which is where the rubber hits the road) at the regional and local level which are not even included in models such as the one Hansen uses in the graph you referenced above.

There is a consensus, the IPCC is actually doing a pretty good job with a difficult task, it is ignoring key areas of climate science (mostly because they don’t know yet what to say, though many scientists are working on it)and resolutely ignores counterfactual data from disciplines which are relevant in testing the hypothesis about their work. That consensus is sorely misrepresented by the environmental movement, Al Gore and out of consensus scientists such as those at Real Climate to stifle dissent and hard questions from even those inside the consensus who are not ready to be as alarmist in their scientific views as they are, or who feel the alarm should be sounded about a broader range of issues or who believe that energy and carbon policy are not the most important thing to be looking at.
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
I think this story blazes new territory in looniness on the global warming debate:

Former Canadian Defense Minister Says Use UFO Technology to Solve Global Warming

Yikes
 
Written By: steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com/
Odysseus,

I think you might enjoy reading the threads below which address your question and propose that modern irrigation practices are pumping sufficient water vapor into the atmosphere to account for a large portion of AGW.

http://gwhunta.gnn.tv/blogs/22032/Agriculture_and_Agricultural_Irrigation_is_the_Cause_of_Anthropogenic_Warming_of_Earth_s_Climate_System

http://gwhunta.gnn.tv/blogs/22104/Global_Warming_Think_Again_or_For_the_First_Time_Think?r=

 
Written By: Egalitarian
URL: http://

 
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