The Grist Grifters, Part IV

Now we get into the “why” about Global Warming. And the first is a doozy:

1. Climate models are unproven. Why should we trust a bunch of contrived computer models that have never had a prediction confirmed? Talk to me in 100 years. Response by Coby: Given the absence of a few duplicate planets and some large time machines, we can’t test a 100-year temperature projection. Does that mean the models can’t be validated without waiting 100 years? No.

Commence head scratching.

Now you have to be very careful predicting the future. You also have to be very careful when you deal with people who claim they can predict the future. You want to believe them, right? Obviously these are smart people, and they’ve got super-computers! And the computer can’t be wrong!

Beware the vague. Coby has bought into the Global Warming idea, and he’s trying to sell you the same snake oil. Lo and behold, he also has the results of warming predictions that have been proven right– so therefore there must be CO2 forcing of temperautre on a wide scale!

Now let’s look at the past 100 years and see what’s happening to the temperature. It’s been… increasing! In fact, we’ve come out of an ice age and things are still getting warmer. And Hansen was able to go before a committee and say, “It’s going to get warmer in 12 years!” And we’re to believe he’s some sort of modelling superman? I hate to break it to you, but it’s been getting warmer for the past 100 years, or so we’re being told. So Hansen’s model and prediction is really a reasonable guess based upon warming trends that have lasted 80 years before Hansen’s models even started out!

It’s similar to a psychic who tells you that the next day will be warm, and the days after that, much warmer still. He says I should be careful, because gas prices will rise– and they’ll rise just as I’m about to take a big trip. He also says I should travel west instead of east, and north instead of south, because if I go those other two directions, I will be threatened by violent storms.

It sounds pretty specific, right? Everything tailored to me and what I’m doing. He even knows I’m going on a trip. But stop for a second and think. Is what this psychic is saying really out of the normal?

It’s May. The summer solstice is still over a month away. Natrually the temperatures should increase. He warns me of gas prices– and that’s true, but only because gas prices peak around Memorial Day. He sees my wedding ring, notes my age, and assumes I have kids, so he’ll make a guess that I’m going on vacation with the family in the summer, so he throws out a “big trip” line. And he says I should travel west and north– away from the South and East which experience severe weather in the spring and summer, a logical conclusion.

But unless you thought about what the psychic said, you’d walk through the summer thinking, “Man, that pyschic was right on!“. And Hansen was right on. So was Arrhenius (although Arrhenius though the warmer temperatures would bring on a global paradise).

Take a look at Coby’s “convincing list”:

models predict warming of ocean surface waters, as is now observed;

And as oceans warm, they release far more CO2 into the atmosphere than humans can.

models predict an energy imbalance between incoming sunlight and outgoing infrared radiation, which has been detected;

As temperature goes up, so does relative humidity, which will trap more heat.

models predict sharp and short-lived cooling of a few tenths of a degree in the event of large volcanic eruptions, and Mount Pinatubo confirmed this;

As was noted with other large volcanic eruptions, dating back to the 1800’s.

models predict an amplification of warming trends in the Arctic region, and this is indeed happening;

Which will happen from oceanic warming. (And Antarctica defies this prediction.)

and finally, to get back to where we started, models predict continuing and accelerating warming of the surface, and so far they are correct.

Every single conlcusion here is cylclical logic. Humans make CO2 which warms the earth which warms to oceans which warms the arctic and warms the earth.

The only problem with such thiniking is that it excludes any possibility of other phenomena which is causing the Earth to warm. Solar variance, geothermal oceanic influence, current shifts– anything that causes a temperature change is ignored because it’s not politically convenient. But note the important ocean impact. If humans cause a little change that warmed the oceans, the amount of CO2 that would come from the oceans would cause immediate impact on climate. And, most importantly, there would be nothing humankind could do that would stop this event from running away and causing rapid, uncontrollable and devastating warming to the planet.

But we’re still here. Planetary tempratures have risen some, and CO2 is building in the atmosphere. And everything the models predict don’t differentiate between natural and artificial global warming.

2. Models don’t take clouds into account. Clouds are a large negative feedback that will stop any drastic warming. The climate models don’t even take cloud effects into account. Coby: All of the atmospheric global climate models used for the kind of climate projections synthesized by the IPCC take the effects of clouds into account. You can read a discussion about cloud processes and feedbacks in the IPCC TAR.

Convinced? Don’t be. Here’s what he says later:

The ultimate contribution of clouds to global temperature trends is highly uncertain, but according to the best estimates is likely to be positive over the coming century. There is no indication anywhere that any kind of cloud processes will stop greenhouse-gas-driven warming, and this includes observations of the past as well as modeling experiments.

No links here. Just some hand-waving. More of a “don’t pay any attention to the man behind the curtain” statement than anything substantial.

As the world gets warmer, here’s what we know:

  • The amount of water in the atmopshere will go up.
  • As a result, there will be more water trapped in the atmosphere.
  • More water = more clouds (especially with increased pollution)
  • More clouds = more reflectivity and more heat trapping
  • More clouds could equal more rain, which increases the rate of removal of CO2 from the atmosphere.

The big question is: will greater cloud cover slow temperature rise, or will it accelerate it with heat trapping?

Coby and his ilk seem to think it’ll give a positive feed to the planet’s temperature. Again, if this is true, then any substantial release of CO2 from the oceans would cause a runaway greenhouse effect.

In fact, we should see a dramatic temperature rise in the tropics, but we don’t. In fact, humid areas give the slowest response to a warming change.

3. Aerosols should make the Southern Hemisphere warm faster. Scientists claim that global warming from greenhouse gases is being countered somewhat by global dimming from aerosol pollution. They even claim that aerosol pollution caused the cooling in the mid-century. But GHGs are evenly mixed around the globe, while aerosols are disproportionately concentrated in the Northern Hemisphere. It follows that warming should be greater in the Southern Hemisphere — but that’s the opposite of what is happening. Clearly climate scientists do not know what is really going on.

Whoever makes this objection should know enough about land mass to undestand there’s more in the North than in the South, which means there’s more ocean in the south. The truth of the matter is that the oceans regulate temperatures in the south due to the fact that humidity trumps CO2 as a warming factor. The heat capacity of the oceans is a great sink for energy, and it diffuses through the billions of gallons of water in the oceans. In the north, CO2 over dry land has a notable affect, and as there’s more land, there’s more heating.

The aerosols don’t really play into affect here, something anyone who knows about land masses should be arguing, which makes me wonder if the question was just something they “heard” (made up).

4. Observations show climate senstitivty is not very high. Taking into account the logarithmic effect of CO2 on temperature, the 35 percent increase we have already seen in CO2 concentrations represents about three-quarters of the total forcing to be expected from a CO2 doubling. Since we have warmed about 0.7 degrees Celsius so far, we should only expect about 0.3 degrees more for a doubling from pre-industrial levels, so about 1 degree total, not 3 degrees as the scientists predict. Clearly the climate model sensitivity to CO2 is much too high.

Coby rearranges his shells here. Pay attention to the shell with the ball:

We don’t yet know exactly how much the climate will warm from the CO2 already in the air. There is a delay of several decades between forcing and final response. Until an equilibrium temperature is reached, present day observations will not tell us the exact value of the climate’s sensitivity to CO2.

If we don’t know how CO2 is going to affect the climate, then how on Earth can the models be correct? How can we know what the hell is going to happen in 20, 50, 100 years? It’s all guessing, and these people want us to change everything we’re doing based upon a hunch!

The truth of the matter is we have a pretty good idea of what’s going to happen. Lindzen, who Coby tries to debunk, makes it clear that the increase of CO2 is not going to be as disasterous as people claim. I highly recommend reading the entire slideshow. It was made in 2006 so the science is still current. Coby knows most people won’t sit through it, so he’ll say “the log scale is wrong” and then get it into your mind that everything Lindzen says is wrong, when, in reality, it’s really interesting reading.

We’ll be heading to part five next week before my hiatus.


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My name is Doc. Welcome to my blog. If you're visiting from another blog, add me to your blogroll (and I'll happily reciprocate). I have a Ph.D. in Chemistry and live in Wisconsin. If you have any questions, feel free to email me. My email is docattheautopsy at gmail. (No linking to deflate the incredible spam monsters).



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