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Still discovering what makes the climate work
Posted by: McQ on Friday, June 27, 2008

A perfect example of why I have no faith at all in the "science" of the AGW crowd.

The discovery:
An important mechanism for sucking ozone and methane out of the atmosphere has been discovered over the tropical Atlantic. The finding reveals how the two greenhouse gasses are kept in check by natural chemical reactions.
Woohoo, right? Ozone and methane have a natural mechanism which keeps them in check.

However, in the very next paragraph we're warned:
Researchers warn, however, that there is a risk the process could be overpowered by rising industrial pollution.
How in the world can researchers who just discovered something they apparently didn't even know existed know enough about it to tell us that we can kill it if we're not careful?

Based on what data for heaven sake?
"At the moment this is a good news story: more ozone and methane being destroyed than we previously thought," says Alastair Lewis of the National Centre for Atmospheric Science in Leeds, UK.

"But the tropical Atlantic cannot be taken for granted as a permanent sink for ozone. The composition of the atmosphere is in fine balance here," he adds.
Really? So Mr. Scientist, who apparently didn't even know this mechanism existed last year, how do you know there's a "fine balance" here?
Yet climate models are not very precise when it comes to predicting where and in what quantities the gas is produced and removed. Part of the problem is that the molecule is largely recycled above the tropical oceans, where data is sparse.
Ummm ... I think we've all figured out that climate models aren't very precise and this discovery points to precisely why that's the case.

But lack of information, data or science doesn't seem to slow down the pushing of the agenda, does it:
"There is huge potential for these processes to be affected as global warming changes winds, water temperatures and ocean productivity," he says. Changing winds would affect how much bromine is released in sea spray.

The researchers also warn that the precious greenhouse gas sink could be threatened by a class of chemicals that are coughed up by cars and factories. Nitric oxides boost the production of ozone, an effect which is currently overpowered by the halogen and sunlight-driven tropical sink.

"It will only take a small increase in nitrogen oxides from fossil fuel combustion, carried here from Europe, West Africa or North America on the trade winds, to tip the balance from a sink to a source of ozone," explains Lewis. The Asian economies, especially China's, are also a growing concern.
A "huge potential" huh? Seems to me most of the AGW stuff we've suffered through has been mostly based on "huge potential" and very little science.

Call us again when you've modified the models which presently tell us of approaching climatic apocalypse to reflect the effects of these sinks - if you have enough data to do that yet.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

I’d really like to see the level of detail and the calibration of any global model perporting to calculate "how much bromine is released in sea spray."

The list of "we don’t knows" involved in global models is long. This shows we don’t even know what we don’t know.

Talk to me about raising my taxes only after you scientist guys have this figured out a whole lot better.
Written By: Joseph Somsel
URL: http://
Atmospheric nitrous oxide accounts for only 31 parts per million. Not exactly a climate forcing component. Water vapor can be as high as 5%.

Professors Fred Singer and John Christy have been collect weather data for 30 years. When they say that the NASA and NOAA historical weather data do not agree with the models, the model makers say the data are faulty.

Logic and scientific methods are simply ignored.

Written By: arch
URL: http://
This sort of news has been coming out almost daily now. At what point do the AGW/GW believers start re-thinking this - at least to the point where they admit to themselves that the science is far from settled? I gotta believe Henke is having second thoughts by now. I’d hope, anyway.
Written By: Grimshaw
URL: http://
Did you see the announcement on North Pole sea ice?

They reckon it’s a 50/50 chance that it will be gone this summer because there’s only 1 layer there right now.

they could be wrong, and next year there will be TWO layers there (and perhaps we’ll start layering it on again).

I gather in their time log book there was never a time before when there was no ice there (don’t ask how the multiple layers were laid down, they just WERE you know, and always HAVE been too!)

No no, the climate we have now, it’s the optimal, the one the Universe (or God) intended, and any deviation from the way it is NOW is WRONG WRONG WRONG and was caused by Joe’s SUV and MY lawnmower and air conditioner.
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Talk to me about raising my taxes only after you scientist guys have this figured out a whole lot better.
Written By: Linda Morgan
URL: http://
These AGW scientists are starting to sound more like journalists than scientists.
Written By: Dusty
URL: http://
It hit me with this post that we’re living in yet another pre-Copernican eras. Please lord, let someone remember that we weren’t all believing in elephants standing on the backs of turtles, universes circling the earth and the mother Gaia suffering our carbon transgressions. Not all of us were complete fools suckered by the latest nihilistic cult.

It truly is shocking how far science has been set back with the Cult of the Warming Planet’s mysticism. We have complete disregard of scientific practices, statistical fraud, selection bias, causal relationship confusion and other absolute abuse occurring as many of our scientists have left objective reason to seek a false faith (or worse yet, pretend to seek a faith as they desire funding riches). Whether they’re selling out to false prophets or financial gain, neither speaks well of the decline of our scientific institutions.

We need to expose and shun these frauds, and more importantly, force them to be held accountable to their results. A business that fakes its math, produces products that are little more than fraud, and continually sucks investment without tangible output is shut down and increasingly, its executives subject to criminal penalty. Let’s deprive these con artists of funds swindled from taxpayers and hold them accountable to the same standards those of us in the commercial sector are subject to.
Written By: redherkey
URL: http://
These AGW scientists are starting to sound more like journalists [b]politicians[/b] than scientists.
I think this may be more applicable statement.
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
Dr. John Christy, a professor of meteorology at UA - Huntsville, is one of the principal authors of the IPCC report. He openly admits that there are forces acting on climate which we do not understand. He also flatly rejects the premise that levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide are causing major changes in our weather.

Dr. Reid Bryson, Emeritus Professor and founding chairman of the University of Wisconsin Department of Meteorology, is widely regarded as the father of climate science. In May 2007, he had this exchange with an interviewer in the Wisconsin Energy Cooperative Newsletter:

" Q: Could you rank the things that have the most significant impact and where would you put carbon dioxide on the list?

"A: Well let me give you one fact first. In the first 30 feet of the atmosphere, on the average, outward radiation from the Earth, which is what CO2 is supposed to affect, how much [of the reflected energy] is absorbed by water vapor? In the first 30 feet, 80 percent, okay?

"Q: Eighty percent of the heat radiated back from the surface is absorbed in the first 30 feet by water vapor…

"A: And how much is absorbed by carbon dioxide? Eight hundredths of one percent. One one-thousandth as important as water vapor. You can go outside and spit and have the same effect as doubling carbon dioxide."

This article entitled "The Faithful Heretic" is enlightening. Obviously, Dr. Bryson had control of this interview.

I have heard various estimates on the number of factors capable of forcing climate change. I’ve seen numbers from 80 to 150. Dr. Michael Mann, Professor at UVA and now Penn State, was the model maker of two climate change (hockey stick) models used by IPCC to predict global warming. He used only four factors (including CO2 level) but could not model clouds or water vapor.

Before we throw our economy under the bus, we should get an unbiased scientific study of this whole subject, absent recriminations for skeptics and dissenters.
Written By: arch
URL: http://
I sometimes make statistical models, although nothing so complicated as the atmosphere. Whenever I look at the IPCC models I am reminded that what you get from a model is largely determined by the ’simplifying assumptions’ you make about boundary conditions.

My models are constrained by not allowing any non-theoretically based relationships to be estimated, and by not allowing any relationships at all between the error terms between observed and unobserved variables. The model diagnostics rather frequently imply that such relationships exist, and they would give some of my models more explanatory power, but they wouldn’t match up with our theoretical understanding of our subject.

If you just ’give up’ those boundary conditions you can make the model do just about anything you like.

Remember that the Global Winter Nuclear Nightmare (or whatever it was called) assumed that the world was as smooth as a billiard ball and the atmosphere was uniform and one inch thick.

The guys over at climate audit are all over the boundary conditions of these models. For instance, evidently there is no connection between the atmosphere and the ground (or surface, more generally). How odd. I seem to remember there *being* a connection, but I suppose all those ’scientists’ can’t be wrong, right ManBearPig?

I think the Global Warming thing is falling apart, but probably not fast enough.
Written By: jorgxmckie
URL: http://
So, destroying atmospheric ozone is a good thing?

OK, so can we go back to the cheaper refrigerants we used to have in air conditioners (and yes, refrigerators and freezers), and aerosol propellants (instead of pumps, which may violate the Americans with Disablities Act since arthritics and others may not be able to operate them) for hair spray and shaving cream? All this was done, after all, to "heal" the "hole in the ozone layer" not so many years ago.
Written By: teqjack
URL: http://
So, destroying atmospheric ozone is a good thing?
This isn’t atmospheric ozone (there are two kinds) they’re talking about.
Written By: McQ
Dr. Michael Mann, Professor at UVA and now Penn State, was the model maker of two climate change (hockey stick) models used by IPCC to predict global warming. He used only four factors (including CO2 level) but could not model clouds or water vapor.
Indeed, people have plugged completely random numbers, even all zeros, and gotten the exact same graph. Mann’s graph excels only at producing a hockeystick-shaped graphs...
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://

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