What stratospheric hotspot?

There’s no predicted hotspot in the upper troposphere, and cooling of the stratosphere is now the new indicator. New paper finds “greenhouse cooling” of the stratosphere over past 52 years

image

On the left is the data collected by millions of weather balloons.xiv On the right is what the climate models say was happening.xv The theory (as per the climate models) is incompatible with the observations. In both diagrams the horizontal axis shows latitude, and the right vertical axis shows height in kilometers. Image from Dr. David Evans

A new paper published in Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics finds the stratosphere of the Northern Hemisphere cooled over the past 52 years due to the increase of greenhouse gases. The paper suggests that stratospheric cooling is a “more suitable” signal of anthropogenic global warming than trying to find a mid-troposphere hot spot (which was previously considered to be the definitive “fingerprint” of man-made global warming, but still has not been found despite millions of weather balloon and satellite observations over the past 60 years):

According to the authors, 

A major open question that still remains to be answered is whether the stratosphere can be considered as a more suitable region than the troposphere to detect anthropogenic climate change signals and what can be learned from the long-term stratospheric temperature trends. Indeed, the signal-to-noise ratio in the stratosphere is, radiatively speaking, more sensitive to anthropogenic GHG forcing and less disturbed by the natural variability of water vapour and clouds when compared to the troposphere. This is because (a) the dependence of the equilibrium temperature of the stratosphere on CO2 is larger than that on tropospheric temperature, (b) the equilibrium temperature of the stratosphere depends less upon tropospheric water vapour variability and (c) the influence of cloudiness upon equilibrium temperature is more pronounced in the troposphere than in the stratosphere where
the influence decreases with height (Manabe and Weatherald,
1967). Furthermore, anthropogenic aerosols are mainly
spread within the lower troposphere (He et al., 2008), and
presumably have little effect on stratospheric temperatures.

Another open question is whether the lower stratosphere
has been cooling in the time since a reasonable global network
became available, i.e. after the International Geophysical
Year (IGY) of 1957–1958. Such a long-lasting cooling
from the 1960s until today would need to be explained.
To what extent are the cooling trends in the lower stratosphere
related to human-induced climate change? Has the
cooling been accelerating, for instance at high latitudes in
winter/spring due to ozone depletion? Has it been interrupted
by major volcanic eruptions and El Niño events (Zerefos et
al., 1992) or large climatological anomalies.

This study addresses those questions and presents a new
look at observed temperature trends over the Northern Hemisphere from the troposphere up to the lower stratosphere in a search for an early warning signal of global warming, i.e. a
cooling in the lower stratosphere relative to the warming in
the lower atmosphere.

However, even the most ardent fans of anthropogenic global warming theory don’t agree on why an increase of “heat trapping” greenhouse gases would have the opposite effects of causing the stratosphere to cool and the troposphere to warm.

Further, many warmists claim any source of warming including solar activity, cloud changes, ocean oscillations, etc. would cause a mid-troposphere “hot spot” and overlying cooling of the stratosphere, and would not necessarily be a signal or “fingerprint” of anthropogenic global warming.

The authors also find from 1958-1979 the lower troposphere either slightly cooled or remained unchanged, followed by significant warming 1980-2010:

From 1958 until 1979, a non-significant trend (0.06 ± 0.06 °C decade−1 for NCEP) and slightly cooling trends (−0.12 ± 0.06 °C decade−1 for RICH) are found in the lower troposphere. The second period from 1980 to the end of the records shows significant warming (0.25 ± 0.05 °C decade−1 for both NCEP and RICH). Above the tropopause a significant cooling trend is clearly seen in the lower stratosphere both in the pre-1980 period (−0.58 ± 0.17 °C decade−1 for NCEP, −0.30 ± 0.16 °C decade−1 for RICH and −0.48 ± 0.20 °C decade−1 for FU-Berlin) and the post-1980 period (−0.79 ± 0.18 °C decade−1 for NCEP, −0.66 ± 0.16 °C decade−1 for RICH and −0.82 ± 0.19 °C decade−1 for FU-Berlin).

Thus, although it appears the stratosphere may be cooling, and this could be due to increased greenhouse gases, there is still no evidence of a mid-troposphere “hot spot” predicted by climate models. The slight cooling to no change of lower tropospheric temperatures from 1958-1979 found by this paper also don’t support AGW theory since CO2 levels rose ~7% during that period.

The paper:

Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 7705-7720, 2014
http://www.atmos-chem-phys.net/14/7705/2014/
doi:10.5194/acp-14-7705-2014

Evidence for an earlier greenhouse cooling effect in the stratosphere before 1980 over the Northern Hemisphere

C. S. Zerefos, K. Tourpali, P. Zanis, K. Eleftheratos, C. Repapis, A. Goodman, D. Wuebbles, I. S. A. Isaksen, and J. Luterbacher

Abstract

This study provides a new look at the observed and calculated long-term temperature changes from the lower troposphere to the lower stratosphere since 1958 over the Northern Hemisphere. The data sets include the NCEP/NCAR reanalysis, the Free University of Berlin (FU-Berlin) and the RICH radiosonde data sets as well as historical simulations with the CESM1-WACCM global model participating in CMIP5. The analysis is mainly based on monthly layer mean temperatures derived from geopotential height thicknesses in order to take advantage of the use of the independent FU-Berlin stratospheric data set of geopotential height data since 1957. This approach was followed to extend the records for the investigation of the stratospheric temperature trends to the earliest possible time. After removing the natural variability [it is impossible fully distinguish natural variability from anthropogenic] with an autoregressive multiple regression model our analysis shows that the period 1958–2011 can be divided into two distinct sub-periods of long-term temperature variability and trends: before and after 1980. By calculating trends for the summer time to reduce interannual variability, the two periods are as follows. From 1958 until 1979, a non-significant trend (0.06 ± 0.06 °C decade−1 for NCEP) and slightly cooling trends (−0.12 ± 0.06 °C decade−1 for RICH) are found in the lower troposphere. The second period from 1980 to the end of the records shows significant warming (0.25 ± 0.05 °C decade−1for both NCEP and RICH). Above the tropopause a significant cooling trend is clearly seen in the lower stratosphere both in the pre-1980 period (−0.58 ± 0.17 °C decade−1 for NCEP, −0.30 ± 0.16 °C decade−1 for RICH and −0.48 ± 0.20 °C decade−1 for FU-Berlin) and the post-1980 period (−0.79 ± 0.18 °C decade−1 for NCEP, −0.66 ± 0.16 °C decade−1 for RICH and −0.82 ± 0.19 °C decade−1 for FU-Berlin). The cooling in the lower stratosphere persists throughout the year from the tropics up to 60° N. At polar latitudes competing dynamical and radiative processes reduce the statistical significance of these trends. Model results are in line with reanalysis and the observations, indicating a persistent cooling (−0.33 °C decade−1) in the lower stratosphere during summer before and after 1980; a feature that is also seen throughout the year. However, the lower stratosphere CESM1-WACCM modelled trends are generally lower than reanalysis and the observations. The contrasting effects of ozone depletion at polar latitudes in winter/spring and the anticipated strengthening of the Brewer–Dobson circulation from man-made global warming at polar latitudes are discussed. Our results provide additional evidence for an early greenhouse cooling signal in the lower stratosphere before 1980, which appears well in advance relative to the tropospheric [assumed] greenhouse warming signal. The suitability of early warning signals in the stratosphere relative to the troposphere is supported by the fact that the stratosphere is less sensitive to changes due to cloudiness, humidity and man-made aerosols. Our analysis also indicates that the relative contribution of the lower stratosphere versus the upper troposphere low-frequency variability is important for understanding the added value of the long-term tropopause variability related to human-induced global warming.

(this post via the HockeySchtick)


 

RELATED:

About that missing hot spot in the upper troposphere

Stalking the Rogue Hotspot

The Skeptics Case

 

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173 thoughts on “What stratospheric hotspot?

  1. I don’t suppose the stratosphere could possibly be cooling because we’re around half way through the negative – ie cooling – phase of the ~60 year cycle that appears to be linked to oceanic oscillations, could it?

    No, of course not, that would be far too obvious.

  2. So once again, “cooling proves warming”. Can we now take all this one step further and say, “the models being wrong proves they were right”?

  3. Wow.Just wow.In my next life I’m coming back as a weatherman or politician.The only 2 professions where you can lie through your teeth 100% of the time,and still keep your job.

  4. The “missing heat” is obviously not in the deep oceans. It is hiding in the mid-troposphere hot spot. That explains why thermometers give the illusion that there has been no global warming for the past 17 years.

  5. Does this mean the climate minions will be going back around to all the grade schools to apologize for misinformation in prior guest presentations with scare tactics?

  6. Hot spot or hot potato.

    This paper will probably raise heckles. Look forward to a rushed-out response, as we have seen before. Maybe a make-over for “too noisy to conclude” method of hypothesis reversal.

    As far as I’m concerned, the researchers might as well add that no fairies were spotted at the bottom of the garden in the same period. It really doesn’t matter if the fairy observations are noisy.

  7. More post hoc excuse making. Predicting is much easier after the fact.
    And of course keep your metrics limited to [things that] are inaccessible and for which the reporting can be easily controlled.
    Not to mention raising an alarm off of something that actually impacts no one.
    There is an interesting point hidden away in the report: Could it be that, as the gas law implies, the atmosphere adjusts to changes in energy levels in a very direct and self regulating manner?

  8. [it is impossible fully distinguish natural variability from anthropogenic]….

    …but we can tell you within a 1/100th of a degree

  9. Are we talking “observed” temperatures or normalized “observed” temperatures? You never know these days.

    Also the Boeing 707 started the jet age about 50 years ago and you just wonder how the contrails and jet exhaust constantly being emitted at 9-12 km above the surface just might come into play since most of the weather balloons are released primarily where these plane fly.

  10. maybe the cooling stratosphere signal data haven’t been tampered with yet? Just an oversight that GISS and NCDC will now have to include this data set in their AGW Truthing algorithms.

  11. Jordan says:
    August 4, 2014 at 8:18 am
    “This paper will probably raise heckles.”

    This caused my grammar scourge to kick in. I was just about to correct Jordan but then realized “heckles” is the better term. Bravo. ;-)

  12. Now this has my attention! I have always said that the sign of global warming would be a cooling upper stratosphere.. as that would imply expansion below that level and warming! So this is an interesting paper to me and one that I think can gain traction. However it still does not answer the question: is it man made? And we are going to get our answer soon enough given the change in the PDO and AMO would imply tropospheric cooling and warming above again ( reversal of the cooling) . But we have to let the OBJECTIVE TEST PLAY OUT! It is about half way done now.. Satellite temps from the warmer ocean era, but we must let the cooling cycle play out. either way draconian drivel from the people pushing this really have nothing to do with the actual science. But this is a paper I have always wondered was not done by the side pushing it.. perhaps because the people that buy into are not motivated by such things

    My only criticism is that if they are going to say this.. and have me say, yes you have a point!, then they must say, so do you, we have to watch the next 20-30 years. After all most weather is below to above.. the source regions are where there is the most heat and that is the tropical ocean

    Why do I think I am the one that is saying you have a point and they will simply say
    fuggedabout it

  13. “We do precision guesswork … … …

    … … … …

    … … …

    … … …

    … using high technology!”

  14. I can see how a reduction in O3 would decrease stratospheric temperatures, but I don’t see how increased greenhouse gases would do so.

    From your HockeySchtick Link:

    “Cooling due to the greenhouse effect
    The second effect is more complicated. Greenhouse gases (CO2, O3, CFC) absorb infra-red radiation from the surface of the Earth and trap the heat in the troposphere. If this absorption is really strong, the greenhouse gas blocks most of the outgoing infra-red radiation close to the Earth’s surface. This means that only a small amount of outgoing infra-red radiation reaches carbon dioxide in the upper troposphere and the lower stratosphere. ”

    This explanation as given doesn’t make much sense. If greenhouse gas absorption is really strong, it may INITIALLY block most of the outgoing infra-red radiation, but ultimately the gas will have to re-radiate as much as it blocks.

  15. A major open question that still remains to be answered is whether the stratosphere can be considered as a more suitable region than the troposphere to detect anthropogenic climate change signals and what can be learned from the long-term stratospheric temperature trends.

    First we had “the oceans ate my global warming” ie forget surface temps, let’s go into the deep sea, then global warming stopped. Now this. It is a predictable fingerprint of moving goalposts.

  16. Not “then”, I meant when.

    First we had “the oceans ate my global warming” ie forget surface temps, let’s go into the deep sea, when global warming stopped. Now this. It is a predictable fingerprint of moving goalposts.

  17. Question: If I remember the physics correctly from the radiative transfer classes I took (I am not a radiation physics person), is it not true that if you have a gas that is a preferred absorber/emitter of radiation at certain wavelengths whose concentration decreases with height, then there will be some altitude/layer at which an increased overall concentration of it will cause a net increase of radiation out to space? If I remember correctly, this is because the decreasing concentration of it past a certain level means that more absorbed/re-emitted radiation in the preferred wavelengths will then be able to escape preferentially towards space as it will encounter fewer of the absorbing molecules in that direction. In other words, a heat trapping gas with decreasing concentration with height would be expected to have some higher level in the atmosphere with a net cooling effect owing to the vertical concentration gradient. Anyway, is this correct? This is what I remember from radiative transfer equations courses I took 20 years ago, but I may be remembering it incorrectly.

  18. JohnWho says:
    August 4, 2014 at 7:51 am (Edit)

    Stratospheric cooling will occur if heat is being retained in the troposphere. Actually, I agree with the direction of the study. I think we have had a mild but steady thumb under the scale since 1950, and that we see flat trend during negative PDO and double-warming during positive PDO. (Plus some other extraneous factors. Sootsolarlandusewhatever.)

  19. Claude Harvey says:
    August 4, 2014 at 8:03 am

    So once again, “cooling proves warming”. Can we now take all this one step further and say, “the models being wrong proves they were right”?
    —————————————————————————————————————–

    lol….I love this comment!

  20. @ Claude Harvey -

    We can only assert that the models are right because they are wrong after we have passed the law to find out what’s in it.

  21. What is the mechanism of cooling of the stratosphere? Changing the chemical reactions in the stratosphere occurs only under the influence of ionizing solar and cosmic radiation. Any change in temperature above the tropopause takes place under the influence of ionization and occurs mainly in the ozone layer.

  22. Move the goalposts? What? You KNOW those round things are a safety feature! Think of the children!
    You can’t possibly believe WE would EVER use that hitch to change the game!
    That would be beneath us! We are not crooks! You are just too uneducated to understand! It’s for your own good!
    Money? What money? Look! Over there! Squirrel!
    (Need I add sarc?)

  23. Wait, what?

    The title asks ‘What stratospheric hotspot?’

    There never has been a case for a ‘stratospheric hotspot’.

    The tropical upper tropospheric hotspot is modeled ( and failed ).

    But the RF of the stratosphere has always indicated cooling and yes, this is indeed
    consistent with CO2 forcing.

    Here is my plot:

    The strat cooling and lack of TUT Hot spot are evident.

  24. Though it’s hard to see on the charts it looks like the Stratospheric cooling stopped in the 21st century about the time the warming stopped in the lower layers.

  25. One note of CO2 is a gas gravitationally heavy, heavier than air. Just as the amount of water vapor decreases rapidly in the upper troposphere.

  26. Anthony – might be useful if one of our excellent “folks who know” would provide a simple discussion/primer on how the stratosphere and troposphere interact and react … in particular educate folks that the stratosphere typically reacts opposite to the troposphere … if the troposhere is warming, the stratosphere is cooling & vice versa …

  27. As often is the case, I notice something a bit tangential to the main theme of a post. Thinking about the lack of a mid-tropospheric hot spot that was calculated from climate theory, it seems to me that this failure of the theory is a good starting point for overhauling the theory. What in their models and calculations defines this hotspot? Presumably it is convection of moist air from the hot equatorial sea surface rising to the mid-Trop. If this is the case (please correct me if it is not), we should have a hotspot there EVEN WITH NO global warming. Indeed, the immediate question is why do we not have such a hot spot as a matter of course.

    This warm moist air certainly must rise to (or through) there almost continuously during the daytime. So what happened to the heat? Well it must have gone somewhere else. For it not to even have had a short retention time there, it must have continued up and out the top of the atmosphere as LWIR or spread surprisingly quickly N and S to modify the temperature of the mid troposphere over the higher latitudes, or both.

    Looking at the atmospheric heat cross-section in the top figure, there is a surprisingly uniform heating from the equator towards the poles, so the quick spread away from the equator is certainly an important factor. Remarkably, if the illustration is typical of the actual atmospheric cross-section, there is a substantial depression in the temp profile directly over the equator and even a cool spot where the hot spot should be. The “dimple”, my friends, logically, must be the result of LWIR radiating out of the top of the atmosphere. One (not me!) could calculate the volume of this annular depression over the equator and its temperature differences and obtain a figure for the LWIR over the equator (and compare it to the satellite measurements of such radiation). The lower “cool spot” must be an enthalpy change in the atmospheric water – forming clouds, maybe even ice and heat from this joins the net upwelling of LWIR.

  28. It is quite amazing that there are literaly hundreds of hypotheses (guesses) as to why there has been an interruption in global warming, yet there can only be one reason for global warming to exist in the first place.

  29. Since the temperature in the area of the ozone depends on ozone, examine the amount of oxygen in the stratosphere. Maybe there is less oxygen?

  30. Barry,
    “Though it’s hard to see on the charts it looks like the Stratospheric cooling stopped in the 21st century about the time the warming stopped in the lower layers.”

    I looked at that.

    The RAOB data is a lot nosier ( as we would expect with it’s smaller coverage and reduced resolution ) but the MSU data sets seem to indicate the continued cooling.

    The effect of stratospheric cooling is to slightly reduce RF at the tropopause.

  31. John Who: So, is it “warming causes cooling”

    or “cooling causes warming”?

    CO2 causes surface and troposphere warming (that’s the theory), but causes stratospheric cooling.

    CO2 mixes throughout the atmosphere at approximately equal ppm (but obviously lower density at lower pressures [higher altitudes]). The increase in the CO2 total mass in the stratosphere results in an increase in the net radiation in the stratosphere, which is a net spaceward radiation. You can see the energy flow displayed in the famous Trenberth and Fasullo and Stephens et al energy flow diagrams, though it was a theoretical prediction that increased CO2 in the stratosphere would produce stratospheric cooling. The case is complicated, as explained by the authors in the Introduction: The primary radiative forcing mechanisms responsible for
    global temperature changes in the stratosphere since 1979 have been increases in well-mixed greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations, increases in stratospheric water vapour, the decrease in stratospheric ozone primarily related to chlorine and bromine from various halocarbons, the effects of aerosols from explosive volcanic eruptions, and the effects of solar activity changes (e.g. Shine et al., 2003; Ramaswamy et al., 2006; WMO, 2007; IPCC, 2007, 2013). The effects
    of volcanic eruptions, variations in solar radiation, and other sources of natural variability, including the wave-driven quasi-biennial oscillation (QBO) in ozone, can be accounted for through the use of indices in time series trend analyses (Tiao et al., 1990; Staehelin et al., 2001; Reinsel et al.,2005; Fioletov, 2009). However, the attribution of past lower stratosphere temperature trends is complicated by the effects of the increases and levelling off of ozone-depleting substances (ODSs) and the inter-annual to decadal variability of the Brewer–Dobson (BD) circulation.

    Surface and tropospheric warming have not been observed for the last 15 years or so, but this study confirms the hypothesized cooling of the stratosphere.

    This result, even if confirmed by others for other parts of the stratosphere and even if it continues into the future, does not “rescue” the theory of catastrophic effects of greenhouse gas induced warming. That theory depends on surface and lower troposphere and upper ocean warming (where the catastrophes are hypothesized to take place and where the catastrophic warming is hypothesized to occur), and there hasn’t been observable warming in those locations for as long as Christopher Monckton of Brenchley says there hasn’t been (readers know this appraisal depends, as he has written, on which data sets are accorded the greatest weight.)

    Note also that whereas the ocean warming is damped by the great mass of the ocean, the stratospheric cooling is observed because of the lower mass of the stratosphere, as acknowledged by the authors. The result is compatible with the idea that a doubling of atmospheric CO2 concentration will have a small effect on the distributions of heat and temperature — what is called the “luke warm” position.

  32. Alan McIntire says:
    August 4, 2014 at 8:49 am

    “This explanation as given doesn’t make much sense. If greenhouse gas absorption is really strong, it may INITIALLY block most of the outgoing infra-red radiation, but ultimately the gas will have to re-radiate as much as it blocks.”

    How has Alan not nailed the point. If you claim that high concentrations of CO2 in the troposphere block radiation and, thereby, cool the stratosphere then you violate the fundamental assumption that radiation in equals radiation out. Or you have to invoke some explanation that does not belong to radiation theory.

  33. It’s important to remember the difference between the two features.

    Stratospheric cooling is a direct result of CO2 calculated from radiative transfer models alone ( the ones we have confidence in ).

    The un-observed Tropical Upper Tropospheric Hot Spot is not from radiative forcing directly, but is a consequence of general circulation models with an imposed energy imbalance ( the models that we know are chaotic with lots of important sub scale phenomena ).

    The TUT Hot Spot is also supposed to appear if the imbalance comes from solar forcing:

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/cdrar/effjk.cgi?xx=efficacy&type=Rc&mod=E2SOx4&quantity=01&mean_gen=ANN&pscale=1&nobanner=0

  34. Could this cooling be the result of more efficient thunderstorms that result in less water vapor being transported to the stratosphere. The so called “Iris Effect”, predicted by Dr. Lindzen.

  35. Wow, the quality of comments at WUWT ain’t what it was. Here we have a more or less uniform cry of sarcasm along the lines of “if things are getting colder it’s due to Global Warming”. If you guys want to undermine AGW theory by scientific reasoning as opposed to unscientific sarcasm you’d do well to find out something about the reasoning supporting the theory. The idea of AGW leading to stratospheric cooling was first proposed in 1967 by Manabe and Wetherald on the grounds that long wave radiation would increasingly be absorbed in the troposphere with increasing CO2 leading to less long wave radiatiion reaching the stratosphere – not the most difficult of ideas to grasp. Since that time it has remained a central prediction of AGW theory, not least because it would be a key indication of greenhouse gas forcing as opposed to solar or aerosol forcing, neither of which would be expected to lead to such cooling in the stratosphere. The predicted cooling was finally demonstrated conclusively by observation in 2011. As for this stuff about a supposed 60 year PDO cycle giving rise to a cycling in warming/cooling of the stratosphere, the evidence indicating persistent cooling over the 1952-2012 period (60 years) would seem to undermine this idea.

    Still, keep trying folks: hatred of AGW theory seems to be a very powerful inducement for people to come up with multifarious and mutually contradictory alternative climate theories.

  36. ren says:
    August 4, 2014 at 9:20 am
    ————
    Water vapor decreases rapidly with height because the higher you go, the colder it gets.

  37. To me, the absence of the “hot spot” is an even more devastating blow to the theory of AGW than even the pause. The hot spot is indeed a clear signature that CO2 can cause warming. Its absence is very telling.

    Warmists sometimes respond that AGW is not the only thing that can cause the hotspot. While this is true, they are confusing the logic. Although the presence of the hotspot does not prove AGW, its absence pretty well disproves it.

  38. “Radiosonde balloon data also falsifies the ‘hot spot’ prediction. Once again, the models were wrong.”

    Well, the GCMs are wrong for the upper troposphere.

    But the radiative models for the stratosphere remain correct.

  39. “Still, keep trying folks: hatred of AGW theory seems to be a very powerful inducement for people to come up with multifarious and mutually contradictory alternative climate theories.”

    Lots of irrationality to go around, including those who misuse radiative forcing to exaggerate climate effects and further ulterior motives.

  40. OMG not this junk again. This all goes back to a bad post by Gavin in 2004 where he incorrectly attributed the physical cause of stratospheric cooling.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2004/12/why-does-the-stratosphere-cool-when-the-troposphere-warms/

    “14/Jan/05: This post was updated in the light of my further education in radiation physics.
    25/Feb/05: Groan…and again. – See more at: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2004/12/why-does-the-stratosphere-cool-when-the-troposphere-warms/#sthash.p67m6CdD.dpuf

    #1 The stratosphere does not cool because radiation is being trapped in the troposphere.

    #2 THE STRATOSPHERE DOES NOT COOL BECAUSE RADIATION IS BEING TRAPPED IN THE TROPOSPHERE!!!

    #3. The stratosphere cools due to rising CO2 because the presence of O3 in the stratosphere makes CO2′s radiative properties dominate.

    #4. Where there no or little O3 and the atmosphere un-stratosphied, AGW would warm the stratosphere up to the tipyy top .

    There is no relationship between anthropogenic global warming and stratospheric cooling. They are different physical phenomenon with the same cause, rising CO2. Its not different than the relationship between plant fertilization and AGW. Both share the same cause but one is not proof of the other because they are a different physical process.

    I think the authors of the paper know this because you can see from their parsing of words that they never attribute stratospheric cooling to anthropogenic global warming. They attribute it to CO2 which is true and they use CO2 and greenhouse gas interchangeably but they never make the physical connection between the actually greenhouse gas effect and stratospheric cooling. This is left to the reader to make the wrong connection. This is called lying by context something that is very common amongst academics because they have the emotional mentality of a 4 year old and cannot grasp that there are forms of lying beyond lies of commission.

    In conclusion saying that stratospheric cooling is proof of anthropogenic global warming is like saying that plant fertilization is proof of anthropogenic global warming. No it is not they are different physical processes that share a common cause. Stratospheric cooling is proof of rising CO2 nothing more.

  41. The stratosphere is warmest at the top and then cools as it descends to the tropopause as UV radiations is increasingly filtered out. Any changes in solar UV affect the stratospheric temperatures. If you look at satellite observations for stratosphere temperatures as depicted in Figure 1A Ramaswamy et al. (2006) Anthropogenic and Natural Influences in the Evolution of Lower Stratospheric Cooling. Science 311, 1138, there are 2 warm peaks in the early 80s and 90s corresponding to to sunspot peaks of each cycle. Sunspots cycles are excellent proxies for changes in UV radiation. The sun spot peak in the early 2000s is much lower and accordingly so is stratospheric warming is less. A weakening sun readily explains the cooling trend but the model results using anthropogenic forcing once a again obscure that relationship, yet modelers continue to suggest GHGs are cooling the stratosphere.

  42. GregL says:
    August 4, 2014 at 8:57 am

    ==
    Question: If I remember the physics correctly from the radiative transfer classes I took (I am not a radiation physics person), is it not true that if you have a gas that is a preferred absorber/emitter of radiation at certain wavelengths whose concentration decreases with height, then there will be some altitude/layer at which an increased overall concentration of it will cause a net increase of radiation out to space? If I remember correctly, this is because the decreasing concentration of it past a certain level means that more absorbed/re-emitted radiation in the preferred wavelengths will then be able to escape preferentially towards space as it will encounter fewer of the absorbing molecules in that direction. In other words, a heat trapping gas with decreasing concentration with height would be expected to have some higher level in the atmosphere with a net cooling effect owing to the vertical concentration gradient. Anyway, is this correct? This is what I remember from radiative transfer equations courses I took 20 years ago, but I may be remembering it incorrectly.
    ==

    Agreed, per the radiative transfer properties there are 4 mechanisms of concern:

    - Absorption of photons by GHGs in the appropriate frequency range. The result is an excited GHG molecule
    - Spontaneous emission of photons by excited GHG molecules
    - Molecular collisions which can excite a GHG molecule a small percentage of the time
    - Molecular collisions with will de-excite an excited GHG molecule almost 100% of the time

    In dense air (near the surface), GHG molecules tend to absorb photons then that excitation energy is converted to kinetic energy by a collision before it is spontaneously re-emitted. Thus the theory call for localized warming as the kinetic energy increases.

    In less dense air (the stratosphere), GHG molecules will still experience millions or hundreds of millions of collisions per second (instead of billions). Some small percentage of those will excite the GHG molecule. Since the air is less dense there is enough time between collisions for spontaneous photon emission to de-excite the GHG molecule. Half of those photons will move away from Earth and into space. The end result is a net cooling.

    Thus the radiative transfer model predicts warming at low elevation and cooling at high elevation.

    For most sceptics I think there is little doubt in the basic radiative transfer physics, thus this paper supports something that both warmers and many/most sceptics agree on, so it is of little value except to confirm already agreed to physics.

    If there are sceptics that believe that the radiative transfer physics itself is fundamentally flawed and does not occur, then this paper is one they should address.

    From my understanding of the sceptic / warmer argument, the big question is what the sensitivity of the lower atmosphere is to CO2 warming. This paper has zero to say about that and as such is not relevant to the argument.

  43. The implication here is that the troposphere grabs most of the incoming energy robbing the stratosphere of its share cooling it down with the assumption seeming to be that CO2 is causing that. A heat trapping troposphere might explain why the stratosphere is cooling down but that says nothing about why the troposphere is trapping heat, much less that CO2 is causing it, much much less that it’s the anthropogenic CO2 that’s doing it. We already knew the troposphere has warmed up so what does this study contribute to our understanding? And why does it have anything to do with all the models being completely wrong about the hotspot?

  44. JohnWho: I’m so confused!

    catweazle666 I don’t suppose the stratosphere could possibly be cooling because we’re around half way through the negative – ie cooling – phase of the ~60 year cycle

    Claude Harvey says: So once again, “cooling proves warming”.

    etc etc…..

    Hey guys, ease up on the heavy sarcasm before thinking or reading the subject.

    Stratosphere cooling usually acompanies tropo warming. If stratosphere blocks incoming solar, it warms, cutting down what gets to lower climate system, which cools.

  45. “the evidence indicating persistent cooling over the 1952-2012 period (60 years) would seem to undermine this idea. ”

    Well, the overall stratospheric cooling trend is clearly evident and consistent with radiative forcing estimates.

    However, ‘persistent’ is probably not an apt adjective to describe the stratospheric cooling.

    For the ten years before El Chichon, there is a strat warming trend.
    For the years between El Chichon’s resolution and Pinatubo, there is a strat warming trend.
    For the years since Pinatubo, there is cooling in the upper strat and no change in the lower strat.

    By no means does that preclude CO2, but most of the cooling is actually observed as a step function from before to after volcano eruption:

  46. Climate Weenie says:
    August 4, 2014 at 9:59 am

    Whoops posted without reading the last few posts. I see that CO2 causing stratospheric cooling has been explained . . . but it has nothing to do with anthropogenic CO2.

  47. Steve,

    Better fingerprint of what, Steve? More CO2 or anthropogenic global warming?

    Lying by context is still lying!

  48. John G,

    It has plenty to do with anthropogenic CO2 but nothing to do with anthropogenic global warming. The myth that the stratosphere cools because CO2 traps lower IR is one of the worst myths in the entire debate and one that is wrongly believed by both sides thanks to a bad post by Gavin in 2004.

  49. OH dear, more straight line science. When will these guys get beyond “trend” fitting everything.

    Let’s look at TLS ( temp of lower stratosphere ) without a straight line to guide the eye and mind:
    Let’s also drop the broken climate models , that will not tell us anything useful.

    Observational data:

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=902

    Yes signal to noise is a lot better in stratosphere and we can see straight away what is causing the cooling. Volcanoes.

    0.5K drop after each event.

    Whether this is changes in ozone, which is reckoned to be reduced after Mt P. or whatever process that removes the volcanic aerosols also removes anthropogenic pollution, the cause of the changes seems to be clearly attributable to punctual events, not a long term CO2 driven decline.

  50. “The myth that the stratosphere cools because CO2 traps lower IR is one of the worst myths in the entire debate and one that is wrongly believed by both sides thanks to a bad post by Gavin in 2004.”

    So, a radiative model of an increased CO2 atmosphere will yield reduced net longwave at the troposphere.

    That being the case, the layers above experience less energy.

    Which part is a myth? and why?

  51. @gregfreemyer: Thanks! I had thought it had been something like this. Others prior to your post were getting at this answer as well, though not directly.

    To everyone else: Please avoid bad physics and knee-jerk reactions. This entire climate science issue is badly politicized – a fact beyond dispute – but please don’t contribute to it immediately based just upon paper titles. The central real science issues are these:

    1) What is the water vapor feedback as a forcing response to the small heating that occurs directly as a result of increased CO2? If it exists, it would be a powerful amplifier, but also imply a highly unstable climate system that should respond to any warming (hence why did the earth’s temp not “run-away” during the warmer period of the Holocene Maximum?). Given the importance of this and other highly nonlinear reactions to forcing, we truthfully do not fully know how this works and are highly unlikely to model it correctly at present knowledge levels. This should be the proper skeptical position as none of this is in dispute, and claims of certainty as to how these forcings interact is clearly junk science at present.

    2) How much of warming during the 20th century is “real”, versus how much was thermometer-adjustment errors and thermometer siting/land-use-change issues?

    3) What would be the present “global temperature” (a terrible and hard to define metric for atmosphere/ocean heat content) absent forcing driven by increased CO2 levels? A related question is what amount of the increased CO2 levels is directly attributable to the sum of all anthropogenic effects (emissions, land use changes, etc)? Is it even possible to know this without being a deity that could create a replicate earth complete with no humans?

  52. Steven Mosher says: “Stratospheric cooling is the better fingerprint.”

    Yes, but whose ? Not mine and yours.

    The best thing to do with fingerprints is to look at them and see who’s they are before arresting the usual suspects because you have “a fingerprint”. ;)

  53. in their abstract the authos say they filtered the data to remove natural variation.

    How did they filter out natural variation? how do you tell signal from noise if you dont understand the statistical properties of the noise?

  54. The first trend has an error rate as large as the trend (0.06 +- 0.06) and for the second trend it is half the trend. I’ll say it again. When the error rate is a significant percentage of the answer (trend), the theory cannot be proven. Statistics that take numbers and average them and have a large or significant percentage error rate are guesses, not facts. My whole problem with AGW is that. I mean in physics we have the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, The more precise the supposed average, the less likely they are to be correct due to the variations in equipment, calibration, location, human error, etc.

  55. @Bill H. says:
    August 4, 2014 at 9:49 am

    Bill,

    It’s a simple matter that the AGW theory says there should be a hotspot in the mid-troposphere and there ain’t. This observation means the AGW theory is invalid because the observation doesn’t match the results.

    In lieu of snarky comments, I’ll wait for a theory which agrees with observations.

  56. “in their abstract the authors say they filtered the data to remove natural variation.”
    This is second mistake after the straight line fitting. They have already decided what the natural and ‘unnatural’ signal are. The result is induced from their preconceived ideas.

    There is no “linear trend”, it’s two steps. It’s natural. You need to start by looking at the data _before_ drawing the straight lines that will guide the eye and prejudice the analysis.

  57. Copied and pasted from their abstract:
    The data sets include the NCEP/NCAR reanalysis, the Free University of Berlin (FU-Berlin) and the RICH radiosonde data sets as well as historical simulations with the CESM1-WACCM global model participating in CMIP5. The analysis is mainly based on monthly layer mean temperatures derived from geopotential height thicknesses in order to take advantage of the use of the independent FU-Berlin stratospheric data set of geopotential height data since 1957. This approach was followed to extend the records for the investigation of the stratospheric temperature trends to the earliest possible time. After removing the natural variability with an autoregressive multiple regression model our analysis shows that the period 1958–2011 can be divided into two distinct sub-periods of long-term temperature variability and trends: before and after 1980.

    =============
    So if they are using reanalysis “data” and mixing in a CMIP5 GCM output, how is that not self fullfilling for a priori assumption on GHG effects?

  58. Tom T says:
    August 4, 2014 at 10:20 am

    Right I should have said anthropogenic warming . . . I certainly fell for the implication that somehow the troposphere was stealing the stratosphere’s heat causing it to cool but even if that was true it wouldn’t imply CO2 had anything to do with it.

  59. Next we need to look at TOA changes in reflected SW and compare to TLS.

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=955

    There’s one of those fingerprints again.

    Less SW getting scattered back into space means more making it into the climate system. It’s not heating the stratosphere ( since it’s cooling ) so it must be making it into the lower climate system.

    That is a least one factor that caused ‘global warming’ between 1980 and 2000: the OMG years.

  60. Climate Weenie,

    Its entirely a myth.

    The stratosphere cools because of the presence of O3. The presence of O3 makes the stratosphere considerably warmer than the tropopause below it can considerably warmer than it would be under just under long wave forcing. Therefore, added CO2 increases the stratospheres ability to radiate the heat that the O3 is absorbing but it doesn’t significantly increase its ability to gain heat because the lion’s share of the stratospheric heat content comes from O3 absorbing SW radiation. Were there no O3 or little O3 and the atmosphere un-stratified then CO2s absorptive effects would dominate all the way to the top of the atmosphere. This is the greenhouse gas effect and it does not cool the stratosphere.

  61. gregfreemyer says:

    August 4, 2014 at 10:05 am
    “GregL says:
    August 4, 2014 at 8:57 am

    Agreed, per the radiative transfer properties there are 4 mechanisms of concern:

    – Absorption of photons by GHGs in the appropriate frequency range. The result is an excited GHG molecule
    – Spontaneous emission of photons by excited GHG molecules
    – Molecular collisions which can excite a GHG molecule a small percentage of the time
    – Molecular collisions with will de-excite an excited GHG molecule almost 100% of the time

    In dense air (near the surface), GHG molecules tend to absorb photons then that excitation energy is converted to kinetic energy by a collision before it is spontaneously re-emitted. Thus the theory call for localized warming as the kinetic energy increases.

    In less dense air (the stratosphere), GHG molecules will still experience millions or hundreds of millions of collisions per second (instead of billions). Some small percentage of those will excite the GHG molecule. Since the air is less dense there is enough time between collisions for spontaneous photon emission to de-excite the GHG molecule. Half of those photons will move away from Earth and into space. The end result is a net cooling.

    Thus the radiative transfer model predicts warming at low elevation and cooling at high elevation.”

    Notice that you have introduced a claim that does not belong to radiation theory alone. You appeal to the relative density of the air. There is not a lot of water vapor in the stratosphere. There is a huge amount of water vapor in the troposphere. So, your explanation appeals to factors that fall outside of radiation theory. Radiation theory alone does not imply that radiation passing through a dense cloud of CO2 will cool the area above it that is less densely populated with CO2.

    The important point here is that the good reputation of radiation theory cannot be used to support the claim that high concentrations of CO2 in the troposphere cool the stratosphere. Some other claim must be added. Maybe a claim about relative concentrations of water vapor. Your rather generic claim is about the relative density of air at various heights.

  62. Now I’m really sad.

    Of all people fricking Connolley is the only one who has this right.

    What is the world coming to!!!!

  63. Tom T. and Jim Steele: Thank you for your inputs. They are both clear. They also seem to be orthogonal, which is okay.

    What I haven’t teased out is the mechanism Tom T. implies. The cooling results from a reduction in the amount of (dare I say it) back radiation–presumably longwave–that reaches the stratosphere?

  64. Greg Goodman says:
    August 4, 2014 at 10:35 am

    Excellent post. The mystery continues. Why is it that Alarmists simply cannot get their minds around the concept of natural variation?

  65. Climate Weenie says:
    August 4, 2014 at 10:27 am

    “Which part is a myth? and why?”

    Lots of myths…

    First being that its evidence of global warming.
    Second being that it can even be used as relevant information.

    As you yourself say the model that is correct has nothing to do with global warming. Just because the model is correct doesn’t much of anything in the debate…. It kind of like saying that a model showing the reduction of water in a lake proves global warming because some other models shows that global warming would reduce the lake level. All the time however someone’s just letting water out of the spillway.

    This paper is nothing but a post facto excuse to try to shift the goal posts so that once again well known natural effect = doom.

  66. Where is the comparable 2000 to 2014 graphic? Is the graphic a static picture of what was and was supposed to be in 1999? What does it look like in 2013-2014?

  67. Joe Born,

    No cooling results due to CO2 increasing the stratospheres ability to radiate heat absorbed by the O3.

    As I have said were it not for the presence of significant O3 in the stratosphere CO2s absorptive properties would dominate its radiative properties all the way to the top of the atmosphere warming it to the very tippy top.

  68. So now if you want to find global warming, look at the stratosphere, not at that troposphere whose temperature tells you if there is warming or not. And that stratospheric cooling, they think, started 51 years ago. Has it occurred to them that such changes in the earth environment demand that a causative agent be present? If there is no causative agent to start up that cooling 51 years ago we will have to decide that we are dealing with an uncaused phenomenon. That is something entirely knew to science though apparently accepted willingly by so-called “climate” scientists who wrote this article. They are of course on the trail of carbon dioxide which is their ultimate boogey-man, the root cause of global warming according to their doctrine. As I have said before, CO2 is incapable of warming the atmosphere. This warming tale started with Hansen’s announcement to the Senate in 1988 that he personally had discovered the greenhouse effect. His argument was that there had been hundred years of warming that culminated at the warmest point ever recorded in 1988. The probability of this happening by chance was only one percent so this warming could not happen by chance and had to be caused by the greenhouse effect. The problem with this argument is that thirty of these hundred years are demonstrably not greenhouse warming. You just can’t use a non-greenhouse warming to prove that the greenhouse effect exists. Nevertheless, he and IPCC have been claiming that it does exist for 26 years and getting away with it because there was no way to check it. Fortunately for us, global warming stopped 17 years ago and there has been no warming of any kind since then. At the same time, carbon dioxide has been steadily increasing without causing any of that greenhouse warming used to justify the existence of IPCC. Naturally they don’t like it and point to the fact that the Arrhenius greenhouse theory still predicts warming. That of course is true, and sufficient proof of warming to such true believers. But if a theory predicts warming for 17 years and nothing happens you are justified in tossing that theory into the waste basket of history. This leaves the warmist case without any theoretical support. Fortunately there is another greenhouse theory called Miskolczi greenhouse theory (MGT) that can handle this situation. It came out in 2007 but you don’t know about it because the warmists have successfully suppressed any mention of it. It predicts exactly what we see: there is no warming while carbon dioxide keeps going up. According to MGT carbon dioxide and water vapor, the two major greenhouse gases, establish a joint optimum absorption window in the IR which they control. Arrhenius cannot do that because it is limited to carbon dioxide alone. The optical thickness of this absorption window in the IR is 1.87, determined by Miskolczi from first principles. If you now add carbon dioxide to atmosphere it will start to absorb in the IR just as the Arrhenius theory says. But this will increase the optical thickness. And as soon as it begins, water vapor will start to diminish, rain out, and the original optical thickness is restored. The introduced carbon dioxide will of course keep absorbing but it cannot cause greenhouse warming because the removal of water vapor just balances out the warming capacity that carbon dioxide otherwise would have. It does not prevent absorption, ot simply prevents absorption from warming the atmosphere. The result is a horizontal temperature curve showing no warming while atmospheric carbon dioxide increases, just as we have now. This has several consequences. One of them is that a runaway greenhouse warming that Hansen has been babbling about is quite impossible. This explains why very high carbon dioxide in geologic history did not cause any runaway greenhouse effect. Hansen was also wrong on his Venus analogy because he was ignorant of Venusian geology but that is another story. A more mundane result is that the presence of these mixed GHGs prevents the occurrence of the enhanced greenhouse effect here on earth. It follows from this that AGW is nothing more than a pseudo-scientific fantasy, indulged in by over-eager climate scientists anxious to prove that the greenhouse effect is real.

  69. Oops. My computer didn’t load the second set of graphs first time around. Still what is the “date” on the left side of the first graphic, it isn’t a time series as implied by the title of the graphic.

  70. Steven Mosher says: “Stratospheric cooling is the better fingerprint.”

    A central argument of the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect (remember that?) is the atmosphere warms the surface as a result of radiative physics. Basic radiative physics says the WARMING (delta T) above the surface must be greater than the WARMING at the surface (upper case to stress WARMING does not mean WARMER).

    This prediction was confirmed in AR4, and the above hotspot pattern is just as it appears in AR4. AR4 also went to the length to show different patterns due to different “forcings” and made it pretty clear that only CO2 was behind the predicted hotspot.

    Different researchers used terms like “vertical amplification” or “scaling factor” for the expected difference in delta-T between surface and atmosphere. Delta-T parts of the atmosphere were predicted to be 1.4 to 1.6 times delta T at the surface. This can be seen in the predicted hotspot pattern when the scale is included, and AR4 expressed the scale in degC per decade (therefore WARMING).

    If it is asserted that surface temperature was “forced” up by (say) 0.7 degC over recent decades due to an Enhanced Greenhouse Effect, there is an onus to demonstrate cause and effect. The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect demands that regions of the atmosphere must have delta-T in excess of 1 degC for the same period for the above surface warming.

    If this cannot be demonstrated, the hotspot hypothesis is falsified by data. The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect would also be falsified the extent it rests on the physics encapsulated in the hotspot prediction.

    The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect never claimed that surface warming would be CAUSED (emphasis) by atmospheric cooling. The basic physics would be completely wrong. Stratospheric cooling therefore cannot be a better indicator of the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect.

    The Tropospheric Hotspot has become the Tropospheric Hot Potato. Enjoy the spectacle as the fur starts to fly.

  71. In theory, the stratosphere cooling can be caused by troposphere heating. Can the stratosphere respond the same way to trop cooling? Or is it always negatively correlated?

  72. Climate Weenie,

    “An atmosphere with no O3 is also a myth.”

    Your obtuseness is astounding. Its a hypothetical designed to isolate the greenhouse gas effect.

  73. Tom T.: “No cooling results due to CO2 increasing the stratospheres ability to radiate heat absorbed by the O3.”

    Thanks a lot; that clears it up (at least if you meant a comma after “No”).

  74. Joseph Murphy,

    There is no theory. In reading how these authors parse their words its clear that they know full well the stratospheric cooling and tropospheric warming are not physically related, they only share the same cause.

    When you know that the parsing of words in this paper stands out like sore thumb.

  75. Zerefos et al:

    Crooks and Gray, 2005; Austin et al., 2009). It is well known that significant transient warming events occurred in the stratosphere following the volcanic eruptions of Agung (March 1963), El Chichón (April 1982) and Mount Pinatubo (June 1991), and these can substantially influence
    temperature trend estimates (especially if the volcanic events occur near either end of the time series in question). The common approach in order to avoid a significant influence on
    trend results is to omit data for 2 years following each eruption in the regression analysis. In order to investigate the role played by stratospheric aerosols, we include terms to account
    for the influence of stratospheric aerosol variability, using the Stratospheric Aerosol Optical Depth (Sato et al., 1993) as an index in the regression model.

    >>>

    Well if they are only modelling the volcanic effect as a temporary warming and think they can avoid the periods affected by avoiding two years after the eruptions, their model fitting will be severely wrong.

    The other problem is they are fairly arbitrarily throwing in a bunch of possible “natural” forcing into a multivariate regression. This kind of thing can be done on any data but whether the result is just a spurious ‘best fit’ is another questions.

    This fundamentally assumes a direct correlation with no lag , ie almost instantaneous equilibration. That is nonsense:

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=884

    The result will be spurious attribution due to false correlations. For example the volcanic event occur at roughly 10y intervals and approximately correspond to SSN peak activity.

    the post eruption cooling cannot correlate to AOD they used so what will that be falsely attributed to.

    There is just so much that is wrong with their methods it’s hard to know where to start.

  76. This paper reminds me a little of Marcott, where when pressed I’m sure the authors will state ‘well we never really said that in the paper.’

    Of course getting the reader to assume it was the goal of the paper.

  77. Theo Goodwin says:
    August 4, 2014 at 10:44 am
    gregfreemyer says:
    August 4, 2014 at 10:05 am

    ===================================

    ===================================
    Notice that you have introduced a claim that does not belong to radiation theory alone. You appeal to the relative density of the air. There is not a lot of water vapor in the stratosphere. There is a huge amount of water vapor in the troposphere. So, your explanation appeals to factors that fall outside of radiation theory. Radiation theory alone does not imply that radiation passing through a dense cloud of CO2 will cool the area above it that is less densely populated with CO2.

    The important point here is that the good reputation of radiation theory cannot be used to support the claim that high concentrations of CO2 in the troposphere cool the stratosphere. Some other claim must be added. Maybe a claim about relative concentrations of water vapor. Your rather generic claim is about the relative density of air at various heights.
    ===================================

    Note: I may have misused the term density. You may be taking it as grams per volume. I meant it as molecules per volume.

    My claim has zero to do with water vapor. It has purely to do with the density (number of molecules per volume) of all molecules in the stratosphere versus the density of all molecules in the lower troposphere. I should also have said it has to do with the speed of the molecules, and possibly the average momentum of the molecules, thus the temperature would also need to be taken into account.

    Regardless, the likelihood of a collision exciting a GHG molecule in a GHG molecule / random molecule collision has little to do with the presence of water vapor in the neighborhood.

    Similarly, the likelihood that an excited GHG molecule has time to spontaneously emit before being involved in a subsequent collision has nothing specific to do with water vapor being in the neighborhood. A collision with any molecule will do the job just fine.

    The basic issue is that per the radiative theory a GHG can:

    - convert photons to kinetic energy (heat the atmosphere)
    - convert kinetic energy to photons (cool the atmosphere)
    - absorb and re-emit photons (slow down the transfer of energy)

    All 3 of those processes are going on simultaneously and you have to perform a statistical mechanics analysis of the molecules and photons to figure out what will happen with different situations.

    My statement is that the statistical mechanics analysis when applied to the stratosphere will show that CO2 acts to cool the stratosphere and that an increasing density ( CO2 molecules per volume) or increasing density (CO2 molecules per million molecules) will result in a greater cooling and thus a cooler stratosphere.

    The stratosphere should cool to the point that the lower temperature causes less of the special collisions that excite CO2 molecules and thus equilibrium is achieved.

    To the best of my knowledge, water vapor has nothing to do with the above.

    It is further my opinion that the above is well agreed physics and neither warmers nor most sceptics should take issue with it.

  78. Tom T, you’re not going to get rid of O3,
    so you’re not going to get rid of the temperature profile induced by O3.

    Therefore, the hypothetical is not of much use.

  79. Climate Weenie,

    Its very much of use. You simply don’t get it. The hypothetical allows us to see how CO2′s long wave absorptive properties should effect the stratosphere. CO2s long wave absorptive properties AKA greenhouse gas effect should warm the stratosphere not cool it. However, due the presence of O3 absorbing shortwave radiation CO2s radiative properties dominate and cool the stratosphere.

    I know you think you have an argument but you don’t.

  80. Stratospheric cooling is consistent with greenhouse gas warming by some theories:

    Complicating things, is the factor related to the ozone layer(located in the stratosphere). If it has shrunk, absorbing less solar radiation, then that layer would become colder than when there was more solar radiation absorption.

    Regarding CO2. It absorbs and also emits long wave radiation.
    As the absorption of LW radiation by CO2 becomes stronger in the troposphere(even approaching the point of saturation of some bands?) you might expect there to be less LW radiation in those bands to be absorbed by CO2 at higher altitude…….. in the lower stratosphere. This is what many think

    http://www.atmosphere.mpg.de/enid/20c.html

    But ren(and others)think that any changes in the temperature of the stratosphere must come from changes in ionization of solar and cosmic radiation as they interact with the chemistry of the ozone layer.

    If this were the exclusive reason for the colder temperatures, then it’s not a good signature for greenhouse gas warming below.

    They both make sense to me and it could be a combination of the two or mainly just one of them that have resulted in cooler stratospheric temps.

    However, the main problem with having confidence, is that we don’t have accurate measurements that go back long enough to compare temperatures in the stratosphere in the past with recent temperatures there.

  81. Without a temperature gradient, with more detailed information, the post doesn`t give much understanding of the dynamics. What matter is the emission hight, I think. What altitudes are waming and cooling?

  82. Mike Maguire,

    “Stratospheric cooling is consistent with greenhouse gas warming by some theories:”

    In the same sense plant fertilization is consistent with greenhouse gas warming by some theories i. CO2 causes both but the two aren’t physically related. They are different physical phenomenon caused by increased CO2.

  83. gregfreemyer says:
    August 4, 2014 at 11:28 am
    Theo Goodwin says:
    August 4, 2014 at 10:44 am
    gregfreemyer says:
    August 4, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Regardless, the likelihood of a collision exciting a GHG molecule in a GHG molecule / random molecule collision has little to do with the presence of water vapor in the neighbourhood.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    It’s a long time since I took Physics but if Water Vapour is the major Green House Gas, why is it excluded as a GHG above? Why wouldn’t a collision between any GHG – CO2 or CH4 or H2O molecule have an effect? I am sure this has been discussed before, but give me an idea of why it has to be some “chosen” gas. Thanks.

  84. The simple fact of the matter is that the addition of any molecule be it CO2 or water vapor that makes the stratosphere more dense will cool the stratosphere because of an increase in molecular collisions with O3 that has been excited by absorbing shortwave radiation.

    In a practical sense all CO2 does in the stratosphere is serve as a radiator for O3.

  85. My two cents: increased greenhouse gases in the stratosphere leads to greater IR radiation to space from the atmosphere itself. The stratosphere is more “optically thin” than the troposphere.

  86. Yesterday, before this study came out, the tropical hotspot was the official global warming fingerprint.
    Today, after this paper, a cooling stratosphere is the official global warming fingerprint.
    See? Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum had nothing that these guys don’t have. It is called climatespeak.

  87. Another item to complicate things. What if the cooler stratosphere is from greenhouse gas warming below from CO2 but CO2 absorption is becoming saturated in the troposphere?

    In that case, stratospheric cooling from just this effect, would also be bottoming out as you can’t decrease the amount available to absorb in the stratosphere to less than 0.

    Funny thing about all this, is that we keep getting all these new papers and new studies with breaking news in a field where “the science is settled”.

    Yeah, I know, this one can be seen as more evidence for tropospheric warming by greenhouse gases(even as the disparity of observations vs global climate model temp projections grows).

    Maybe if we could just bring the hot spot that should be in the mid tropospheric tropics out of hiding in the deep oceans(:

  88. Tom T says:
    August 4, 2014 at 11:49 am

    CO2s long wave absorptive properties AKA greenhouse gas effect should warm the stratosphere not cool it. However, due the presence of O3 absorbing shortwave radiation CO2s radiative properties dominate and cool the stratosphere.
    ==========

    Not quite sure what you are saying:

    O3 has absorption/emission bands of 600-800 and 950-1200 wavelengths/cm

    CO2 has 540-800, 850-1250, and 2100-2400 wavelengths/cm

    Clearly there is significant overlap except in the 2100-2400 band (the shortwave band).

    Why do you state that in the stratosphere CO2′s 540-800 and 850-1250 bands are warming bands, but the 2100-2400 band is a cooling band?

    Note that I’m not arguing, I’ve just not been exposed to that statement before. I will repeat that to figure out if a individual band is a warming or cooling band requires a statistical mechanics analysis, but I can easily see where the bands could give opposite results for the same environment.

  89. Apparently evidence of stratospheric cooling is evidence the stratosphere has cooled, no more, no less, because here on planet Earth even the IPCC’s so-called “global average temperature” has been flat for nearly two decades.

    But please keep us informed of stratospheric temperature trends, it’s a nice break from Middle East news.

  90. gregfreemyer,

    The dominate mode of energy transfer in the stratosphere between CO2 and O3 its molecular transfer that dominates. O3 molecules excited by short wave radiation from the sun collide with CO2. The CO2 then radiates this absorbed kinetic energy out to space.

    In the stratosphere CO2 just serves as a radiator for O3.

  91. It is revealing how messy their reanalysis/model data with “natural” variations removed looks compared to straightforward low-pass filter of satellite observations.

    Nowhere in this study to do they actually look at real data, they use model output ( funny ) , ‘reanalysis’ output, and “homogenised” balloon data.

    Despite there being very good global coverage for their second period of study ( 1980 on ) they don’t actually look at it.

    It would seem rather obvious if they did, that they convoluted processing is degrading the data, casting serious doubt on the underlying “trend”. they are fitting.

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=902

    This mindless obsession with fitting linear models to data that has nothing linear about it is one of the biggest impediments to progress in this field.

    Climate variables are not linear progession on any time scale.

  92. The stratosphere cooled whilst the sun was active then stopped cooling around 2000 and may now be warming.

    Since the change in trend coincided with the decline in solar activity it seems that an active sun cools the stratosphere and warms the troposphere whilst a quiet sun does the opposite.

  93. Wayne Delbeke says:
    August 4, 2014 at 12:04 pm
    gregfreemyer says:

    Regardless, the likelihood of a collision exciting a GHG molecule in a GHG molecule / random molecule collision has little to do with the presence of water vapor in the neighbourhood.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    It’s a long time since I took Physics but if Water Vapour is the major Green House Gas, why is it excluded as a GHG above? Why wouldn’t a collision between any GHG – CO2 or CH4 or H2O molecule have an effect? I am sure this has been discussed before, but give me an idea of why it has to be some “chosen” gas. Thanks.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Let me rephrase explicitly for CO2.

    If one has a volume of air in the stratosphere with 0% humidity, CO2 will act as a cooling agent.

    If one has a volume of air in the stratosphere with 100% humidity, CO2 will act as a cooling agent.

    The presence of absence of water vapor has no impact on CO2′s interaction with photons and the molecules that compose the stratosphere. Any molecule colliding with CO2 can excite it, but with very low odds. Any molecule colliding with an excited CO2 molecule will with almost 100% certainty de-excite it.

    To the best of my knowledge, CO2 has no magical chemical interaction with H2O that affects either the excitation or de-excitation process.

  94. For AGW to be viable the stratosphere must cool just as the GAST must rise.

    http://www.realclimate.org/?comments_popup=2019Note

    John Henriksen asks:
    “what would FALSIFY [linking CO2 to ‘warming’]?”

    Schmidt answers:
    ”that the stratosphere is not cooling as expected (this is a cleaner test than the surface temperatures because there are less extraneous factors)”

    The stratosphere hasn’t been cooling (significantly wrt model projections) in over a decade, another AGW fingerprint just taking a hiatus I reckon.

    http://www.acd.ucar.edu/Research/Highlight/stratosphere.shtml

    http://www1.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/cmb/temp-and-precip/upper-air/uahncdc.ls

    http://www.arl.noaa.gov/documents/JournalPDFs/RandelEtal.JGR2009.pdf

    Paywalled:

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v491/n7426/full/nature11579.html

  95. A scienceofdoom post from 2010 has some good quotes that might expalin it better.

    http://scienceofdoom.com/2010/04/18/stratospheric-cooling/

    The great Ramanathan in his 1998 review paper Trace-Gas Greenhouse Effect and Global Warming (thanks to Gary Thompson of American Thinker for recommending this paper) says this:

    “As we mentioned earlier, in our explanation of the greenhouse effect, OLR reduces (with an increase in CO2) because of the decrease in temperature with altitude.

    In the stratosphere, however, temperature increases with altitude and as a result the cooling to space is larger than the absorption from layers below. This is the fundamental reason for the CO2 induced cooling.”

    In Ramaswamy (2001):

    “For carbon dioxide the main 15-um band is saturated over quite short distances. Hence the upwelling radiation reaching the lower stratosphere originates from the cold upper troposphere. When the CO2 concentration is increased, the increase in absorbed radiation is quite small and the effect of the increased emission dominates, leading to a cooling at all heights in the stratosphere.”

  96. Stephen Wilde says:
    Since the change in trend coincided with the decline in solar activity it seems that an active sun cools the stratosphere and warms the troposphere whilst a quiet sun does the opposite.
    ===

    How do you reconcile that description with the TLS data?

  97. gregfreemyer says:
    August 4, 2014 at 11:28 am

    Water vapor was offered as just a practical example. As long as the atmosphere holds something other than CO2 there will be something like water vapor that has to be taken into account. Radiation theory, the mathematical equations, applied to an atmosphere of CO2 alone could not yield the result that a higher density of CO2 molecules could result in the cooling of less dense CO2 molecules at a higher level. Therefore, radiation theory alone cannot yield that result for our actual atmosphere. Something else must be added; something like water vapor. For the last time, some natural science that exists apart from radiation theory must be used to get the result that you claim for radiation theory.

  98. Greg Goodman says:
    August 4, 2014 at 1:03 pm

    So far the quieter sun has only stopped the previous temperature trends as one can clearly see from the TLS data.

    One should now watch that data closely to see whether the decline of solar activity from the peak of cycle 24 is accompanied by further changes which fit my hypothesis.

  99. Theo Goodwin said:

    “For the last time, some natural science that exists apart from radiation theory must be used to get the result that you claim for radiation theory.”

    Correct.
    The Gas Laws plus adiabatic warming on convective descent do the job nicely.

  100. The stratosphere (the lower part) is cooling as expected due to a decline in solar activity(less ozone) over the last few decades, in addition it is cooling more in the middle latitudes in contrast to the polar regions also as expected.

    I have been saying this for years.
    However above 45km ozone amounts and thus the stratosphere temperature run counter to solar activity. This probably due to CME’S and other solar activity which destroy ozone.

  101. Climate weenie:
    The TUT Hot Spot is also supposed to appear if the imbalance comes from solar forcing:

    Maybe I spoke to soon about the quality of wuwt comments. This is a good point, Climween. The tropospheric hotspot is predicted if there is an inbalance between incoming and outgoing radiation at the top of the atmosphere, regardless of the cause – though you wouldn’t believe it if you restricted your sources of information on climate science to the Noble Viscount or any other of the more strident AGW dismissers. That’s why stratospheric cooling is a far better diagnostic of GHG-induced warming.

  102. Look at the 23-38km band in the 60S-60N graph here:

    http://www.acd.ucar.edu/Research/Highlight/stratosphere.shtml

    The commentary says:” The time series are punctuated by transient warming events associated with the large volcanic eruptions of El Chichon (1982) and Mt. Pinatubo (1991), which persist for approximately two years.”

    Note the fact that after the two volcanoes the temp drops TWICE as much as it rises.
    Look at the 37-52km band: all it does is drop !

    “The overall cooling ranges from ~-0.5 K/decade in the lower stratosphere (~20 km), to over -1K/decade in the upper stratosphere (40-50 km). These values can be compared with warming in the lower atmosphere (troposphere) over the same period of order 0.1-0.2 K/decade. The time series in Fig. 1 show that the stratospheric changes are not monotonic, but more step-like in nature; note that stratospheric temperatures have been relatively constant over the recent decade 1995-2005. ”

    -0.5 K/decade in the lower stratosphere and there were how many eruptions per decade? So another way to express that would be -0.5 K / eruption.

    Their equivalence of 0.1-0.2 K/decade ( or per eruption ) is basically what I found here:

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=988

    The reference paper for that page is well worth a look:
    http://www.acd.ucar.edu/~randel/2008JD010421.pdf

    “… MSU channel 4 data suggest the Antarctic stratosphere has not cooled appreciably since the middle 1990s. Temperature trends in the Arctic stratosphere are not significant during the winter and spring months for two reasons: (1) the Arctic stratosphere is characterized by substantial interannual variability during the cold season (Figure 13), which complicates the detection of trends; and (2) the cooling of the springtime Arctic apparent during the 1990s has not
    persisted during the most recent decade. ”

    So neither Arctic nor Antarctic has seen any cooling since 2000. Plateaux galore!

    Oddly, despite having explicitly noted that the changes are step changes with no trend, they spend most of the paper talking about and evaluating non-existent “trends”.

    Though they don’t say it in so many words, it seems that this team has a least recognised what this implies: that there is a rise of 0.1-0.2K in each decade that is directly attributable to volcanic activity. If we are to play straight line games this means 0.1 to 0.2K/decade of warming in the lower climate system as a result of the major eruptions.

    Now that is precisely the “unprecedented” warming that got everyone shitting themselves at the end of the last century.

    That is precisely the “unprecedented” acceleration in warming that has been basis of exponential extrapolations leading to ridiculous “as much as 6 deg C” claims and broken models.

    It is the spurious attribution of these changes to AGW that is the source of the whole problem.

  103. Matthew R Marler says:

    August 4, 2014 at 9:45 am

    John Who: So, is it “warming causes cooling”

    or “cooling causes warming”?

    CO2 causes surface and troposphere warming (that’s the theory), but causes stratospheric cooling.

    Yeah, but…

    even if so, stratospheric cooling does not mean that the troposphere must be warming. That wouldn’t make any (common) sense. It might appear to imply that both couldn’t cool (or warm) at the same time. Further, either way, it does not prove that whichever is happening is being caused by anything we humans are doing.

    I suspect some have said similar above.


  104. Joseph Bastardi says:

    August 4, 2014 at 8:44 am

    Now this has my attention! I have always said that the sign of global warming would be a cooling upper stratosphere.. as that would imply expansion below that level and warming! So this is an interesting paper to me and one that I think can gain traction. However it still does not answer the question: is it man made? And we are going to get our answer soon enough given the change in the PDO and AMO would imply tropospheric cooling and warming above again ( reversal of the cooling)


    That stratospheric hotspot BS has always had me perplexed. It probably means that their computer models are just flat out in gross error. What is going on and is going to happen is conservation of energy. When there is increased ghgs in the air at some level – in a shell, there will be x increase in the absorbed energy due to the extra gas absorption. In simple terms of Stefan’s law, there will also be an increase in emissivity (epsilon) causing an increase in radiation from that shell. The increased radiation will be outward and the same amount of increase will be downward, essentially leading to a 2x sized increase in radiation away from that shell unless the T drops and because of conservation of energy – it must drop in T until it reaches a balance in that shell.

    It would again seem only logical that the increase in IR radiation in the lower atmosphere will have to result in increased water cycle activity for most of the Earth’s surface as the IR is not going to penetrate into the oceans and a regulating effect from cloud cover is going kick in to trim down the visible light that has some ocean penetration.

  105. Steven Mosher: Stratospheric cooling is the better fingerprint.

    Fingerprint of what? If the surface, lower troposphere, and upper ocean do not warm catastrophically, then there will be no catastrophic warming. Stratospheric cooling in the absence of surface warming is the finger print of nothing much to worry about.

    Bill H. : That’s why stratospheric cooling is a far better diagnostic of GHG-induced warming.

    Stratospheric cooling without surface warming is diagnostic of CO2 increases producing no changes worth expensive public policies with respect to CO2 emissions from fossil fuels: a very slight change in the heat fluxes in the atmosphere, producing no changes with important agricultural or civilizational or biological consequences.

  106. John Who: stratospheric cooling does not mean that the troposphere must be warming. That wouldn’t make any (common) sense. It might appear to imply that both couldn’t cool (or warm) at the same time. Further, either way, it does not prove that whichever is happening is being caused by anything we humans are doing.

    I agree, but your first comment was silly.

  107. Salvatore Del Prete says:
    The stratosphere (the lower part) is cooling as expected due to a decline in solar activity(less ozone) over the last few decades, in addition it is cooling more in the middle latitudes in contrast to the polar regions also as expected.
    Consistent with the observation.

  108. MRM: Stratospheric cooling in the absence of surface warming is the finger print of nothing much to worry about.

    There has not been “stratospheric cooling in the absence of surface warming “, there has been both and they were caused by volcanism not AGW..

    Randel et al 2009 basically confirms what I have found myself. That paper is 5y old now. Why are we still crapping on about AGW?

  109. I’m reminded of the 2013 NAS study by Santer et al. (http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2013/09/10/1305332110.full.pdf+html). They claimed to find a “discernible human influence” in the thermal structure of the atmosphere — warming in the troposphere (although not as much as forecast, the authors concede) and cooling in the stratosphere. The wording — “discernible human influence — is artful. Echoing the famous conclusion of the IPCC’s Second Assessment Report, Santer et al. insinuate they have found the long-sought greenhouse “fingerprint.”

    But although stratospheric cooling could due to greenhouse gas emissions trapping more upwelling heat in the troposphere, it could also be due to ozone depletion (because ozone is itself a heat-trapping, greenhouse gas).

    One of Santer et al.’s co-authors is NP Gillett, and the Santer team cites an earlier study led by Gillett (http://www.atmos-chem-phys.net/11/599/2011/acp-11-599-2011.pdf) on the attribution of observed changes in the stratosphere. The bottom line: ” We conclude while the influences of ODSs [ozone depleting substances] and natural forcings are clearly detectable in stratospheric ozone and temperature observations, the influence of greenhouse gas increases is not yet clearly identifiable. A robust separation of the ODS and GHG responses may require a longer period of observations.”

    So contrary to what they imply, Santer et al. did not find clear evidence of man-made global warming. Have Zeferos et al. finally succeeded where others failed?

  110. On the face of it, Greg Goodman seems right about the dubious statistical methodology in this paper. There certainly are typical warning signs of problems. But the authors invoke a paper by Reinsel et al(2005) as the basis for their statistical analysis. Reinsel was a very competent statistics professor, apparently a specialist in time series and multivariate regression. In that sense anyway, it’s not from the usual half-baked school of climate statistics.

  111. The lower stratosphere does not exhibit a GHG signal. It shows a volcano/Ozone depletion from volcanic sulphates signal (and I am tired of climate scientists not recognizing this).

  112. TOm T:

    “OMG not this junk again. This all goes back to a bad post by Gavin in 2004 where he incorrectly attributed the physical cause of stratospheric cooling.”

    No, Tom, it doesn’t go back to Gavin or anyone else in 2004., Since your post seems to be an attempted rebuttal of mine I would invite you to actually read it. You will see that the “junk” long antedates Gavin, going back to 1967. As for the posts you reference both support my contention that increased concentrations of heat trapping gases (aka greenhouse gases, not necessarily CO2) in the troposphere will warm the troposphere and reduce heat transport up to the stratosphere leading to stratospheric cooling. to quote from the 2nd of your references:

    ” For instance in the second of the references we read “This implies that there is a level in the atmosphere (called the effective radiating level) that must be at the effective radiating temperature (around 252K). This is around the mid-troposphere ~ 6km. Since increasing GHGs implies an increasing temperature gradient, the temperatures must therefore ‘pivot’ around this (fixed) level. i.e. everything below that level will warm, and everything above that level will cool.”

    Note that all this occurs independent of the presence of ozone, so the Schmidt reference you cite in support of your “ozone is required for stratospheric cooling” actually undermines your claims.

    You go on to say that the Zerofos et al. paper

    ” never make the physical connection between the actually greenhouse gas effect and stratospheric cooling.

    “Well, Anthony provides us with only a fairly short extract, so you are not in aposition to claim this. Moreover, I think through sentences such as “To what extent are the cooling trends in the lower stratosphere related to human-induced climate change? ” make their aims pretty clear.

    “This is called lying by context something that is very common amongst academics because they have the emotional mentality of a 4 year old and cannot grasp that there are forms of lying beyond lies of commission.”

    I don’t suppose you have any evidence to support this extraordinary accusation on a very large section of the human race. Have you?

  113. From the original post:
    and cooling of the stratosphere is now the new indicator.

    Not really very new, this has been known for sometime.
    E.g. Manabe and Wetherald, 1967, Journal of Atmospheric Sciences: ‘Thermal Equilibrium of the Atmosphere with a Given Distribution of Relative Humidity’.
    Who said: “The larger the mixing ratio of carbon dioxide, the colder is the equilibrium temperature of the stratosphere”.

    More quantitatively Clough and Iacono (1995, JGR, vol 100) calculated the contributions to cooling by various gases with altitude and showed strong cooling between 100mb and 0.1mb peaking about 1mb. There was also some cooling by O3 in the same region but warming down to about 200mb. The cooling rates increased as the CO2 concentrations were increased.

  114. Climate Weenie says:
    August 4, 2014 at 3:13 pm
    Bill Illis:
    Does the effect of volcanoes exclude the effect of CO2?
    ————————————–

    There is no CO2 signal in the data. We are closing in on 19 years of rising stratosphere temperatures now which can only be the result of Ozone rebuilding after the effects of Pinatubo. The data shows that it takes up to 25 years for the Ozone to rebuild (perhaps more). The Earth is lucky that these large stratospheric eruptions are very rare. Before El Chichon in March/April 1982, the last two stratospheric eruptions occurred in 1963 and 1919.

  115. Bill Illis
    “The lower stratosphere does not exhibit a GHG signal. It shows a volcano/Ozone depletion from volcanic sulphates signal (and I am tired of climate scientists not recognizing this)”.

    Bill, If you researched a little harder into what climate scientists do recognise of you might be pleasantly surprised. Here is, of all people, Gavin Schmidt recognising just that:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/11/the-sky-is-falling/ . See para 2.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2004/12/why-does-the-stratosphere-cool-when-the-troposphere-warms/ See para 7.

    Happy reading!!

    As for your claim that there is no GHG signal, as Schmidt points out it tends to be masked by the other effects that you mention in thelower stratosphere.

    However, it is much clearer in the upper stratosphere as the graphs marked “50-30 hPa” (low pressure means high altitude) in Anthony’s article do indicate

    Bill H.

    ClimWee,

    Hopefully that answers a point you made earlier in response to my article.
    I’m going to sign off now and probably not return to wuwt for some time. I’ve enjoyed our alltoo brief correspondence, but the general level of vitriol lurking around this site gets me down too much. Witness Tom T.’s appalling slur on academics as a class (compulsive liars with the emotional development of 4 year olds). Is there something about AGW-phobia that induces such hatred of scholars?

    All the best, Bill H

  116. Greg Goodman says: August 4, 2014 at 10:22 am
    “Yes signal to noise is a lot better in stratosphere and we can see straight away what is causing the cooling. Volcanoes.
    0.5K drop after each event.”

    But volcanoes have been erupting since forever. And the stratosphere hasn’t liquefied.

  117. Bill H. says:
    August 4, 2014 at 3:41 pm
    Bill Illis
    “The lower stratosphere does not exhibit a GHG signal. It shows a volcano/Ozone depletion from volcanic sulphates signal (and I am tired of climate scientists not recognizing this)”.
    Bill, If you researched a little harder into what climate scientists do recognise of you might be pleasantly surprised. Here is, of all people, Gavin Schmidt recognising just that:
    ———————-

    Oh yeah, he just cleared it all up for those reading RealBogusClimate. NOT.

  118. Bill Illis,

    I agree that the volcanoes have had an effect and even that the result is a step function of temperature around them but I don’t believe this precludes the CO2 forcing.

    Here is the graph I linked earlier:

    The 70,50, and 30 mb temperatures do indicate continued cooling since Pinatubo resolved.

  119. Bill H.,

    Despite your over inflated ego I hadn’t even read your post when I made my first post. I posted as soon as I read the article. I posted comments latter. The fact that you are making a caricature argument doesn’t make you special. It makes you generic.

    On to your points first and foremost I have a pdf Manabe and Wetherald, 1967 and your statement that it says
    “long wave radiation would increasingly be absorbed in the troposphere with increasing CO2 leading to less long wave radiatiion reaching the stratosphere”

    Is flat out wrong. It says nothing of the sort. I don’t know what warmmonger site you read that it but it is either a very ignorant statement or a deliberate lie. All its says is “The larger the mixing ratio of carbon dioxide, the colder is the equilibrium temperature of the stratosphere”. In no way does Manabe and Wetherald, 1967 justify your claim. Maybe your original source wrongly attributed the cause due to the paper being vague.

    Now in responding to Illis you re-post the 2004 post from Gavin where he admits that it the information contained therein is wrong!

    You will also notice that in the 2006 RC post they don’t say that AGW is cooling the stratosphere only that CO2 is. In other words Gavin knows he was wrong in 2004 but doesn’t like to admit it.

    He now simply does the same parsing of words that the authors of the subject of this article do.

    “The changes in the figure are related to the cooling seen in the lower stratospheric MSU-4 records (UAH or RSS), but the changes there (~ 15-20 km) are predominantly due to ozone depletion. The higher up one goes, the more important the CO2 related cooling is. It’s interesting to note that significant solar forcing would have exactly the opposite effect (it would cause a warming) – yet another reason to doubt that solar forcing is a significant factor in recent decades. – See more at: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/11/the-sky-is-falling/#sthash.1fbsFWDx.dpuf

    See Gavin no longer mentions trapped IR from the troposphere being responsible. He only makes a vague reference to “CO2 related cooling” and doesn’t really get into what that means. Your mind is left to fill in the blanks.

    This is both lying by omission and lying by context. Gavin said CO2. You assumed that meant global warming. But he never said that. He left it up to you to interpret that and he knew you would.

    The truth of the matter is that Gavin made his totally false 2004 post quite by ignorance but slapped down the atmospheric physicists he works with and has since pretended like it never happened. WMC actually gave Gavin a subtle jab for this mistake.

    “Note: of course the fact that many people couldn’t explain this makes no difference at all to the fact that climate models produce the correct answer: they just integrate the equations, and don’t care about why things happen.”

    That was a jab at Gavin.

  120. Weenie: Here is the graph I linked earlier:

    The 70,50, and 30 mb temperatures do indicate continued cooling since Pinatubo resolved.
    ===

    But the lower levels do not which makes it pretty clear it is not an effect coming from below.

  121. This part of our atmosphere is rather complex as it interacts with UV, ozone, and Rossby waves. Its bottom layer is not a consistent entity, has varying heights above sea level and varies depending on what latitude you are talking about. Its top is fairly consistent and at the same general height above sea level thus is far more stable.

    This variation is why NOAA tables data into latitude and pressure level. The paper above reports one “global” stratospheric temperature. That is nuts. It could be that we are having fewer incursions of warm Rossby waves into the lower boundary of the stratosphere, or maybe more incursions of colder Rossby waves. The devil is in the details and AGW enthusiasts detest details.

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/temperature/

  122. Nick Stokes: But volcanoes have been erupting since forever. And the stratosphere hasn’t liquefied.

    Oh well I guess the data must be wrong then, TLS is going down in steady even “trend” as predicted by AGW hypothesis. It obviously has not be homogenised properly.

  123. Bill Innis: http://s11.postimg.org/lxwzon2rn/Volcanoes_and_Lower_Strat_Temps_1978_2014.png

    Bill, I’m sure we’ve discussed this graph before and the the trends you draw are bogus, hand drawn lines. The first rising line may be about right because there was a slight bump shortly before Mt P but the 19y upward trend is a figment of your imagination.

    Last time you posted that I went back and checked the linear regression over that period and it would take about 400y to recover the 0.5K drop.

    If it is ozone depletion I imagine it will recover eventually but there is no sign of that in the last 19y of that data. All you’ve done it pick he lowest point and the recent high and joint the dots.

  124. “Indeed, the signal-to-noise ratio in the stratosphere is, radiatively speaking, more sensitive to anthropogenic GHG forcing and less disturbed by the natural variability of water vapour and clouds when compared to the troposphere.”

    Hang on! THIS is the troposphere! We live in the troposphere. The CAGW claim, the alarmist reason why we should sacrifice our, and the poor’s, standard of life is precisely that right here, the troposphere, will warm dangerously. Now we are told, they have the chutzpah, to announce that we were right all along, that here, in the troposphere, it won’t get as hot as they said it would, as if they were right and we were wrong! What low standard of disgusting creepy dishonesty will they not stoop to (and make wildlife and the poor suffer as they do it)?

  125. basicstats says:

    On the face of it, Greg Goodman seems right about the dubious statistical methodology in this paper. There certainly are typical warning signs of problems. But the authors invoke a paper by Reinsel et al(2005) as the basis for their statistical analysis. Reinsel was a very competent statistics professor, apparently a specialist in time series and multivariate regression. In that sense anyway, it’s not from the usual half-baked school of climate statistics.
    ===

    It’s a shame that Reinsel paper is paywalled. I’d like to see what and expert at multivariate regression does differently.

    The abstract says that he is using AO and AAO + solar so it would seem to be different to the current paper. He also reports a significant difference from 1996 onwards. So it appears he notes it is basically flat since compared to 0.5K/decade ( = 0.5K / eruption ) before that.

    What Zerefos et al are doing no better than fitting a bunch of AR1 synthetic data and believing it has physical meaning.

    It is clear from their graphs that they are just mangling the data to the point where the clear steps are less evident. Their suggestion that this is AGW and not volcanoes is wilfully misleading in view of the literature already noting the step nature and it’s links to volcanic events (some of which are even cited).

    Yet another attempt to explain away inconvenient data.

  126. Ron House: “Hang on! THIS is the troposphere! ….”

    The point is that the stratosphere is a lot less noisy than down “here”. That means some effects can be seem more clearly. It is just that which makes it so clear that the “trend” is not a trend but two steps, with a clearly identifiable cause. If we just look at tropo data the origin is not clear and it can easily be represented as a linear “trend”.

    Once we recognise the cause we can also recognise it surface data:

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=988

    This is also what Randel 2009 finds.

    I understand your rant but you are missing the point. The stratosphere is informative ( until they mangle it ).

  127. Tom T,
    Well we do seem to agree that Manabe and Wetherall predicted in 1967 that adding CO2 to the atmosphere would lead to stratospheric cooling (specifically diagram 16 on page 250 and the description on page 251), something that you describe as “junk”, when the same claim is made in 2014 by Zerofos et al. and in 2004 by Schmidt. Incidentally, Gavin makes it clear that he corrected the errors in the 2004 Realclimate post, so you are not justified in claiming that it is still in error. I didn’t find Schmidt in any way “vague”.He was as clear as M and W in 1967: increased CO2, whether anthropogenic or not, will, ceteris paribus, give rise to stratospheric cooling. All your conjectures about lying by omission and emotional levels of four year olds seem to be based on the slenderest of evidence and betray a quite scary level of misanthropy.

    Since the overwhelming evidence is that the increase in CO2 in the atmosphere is due to human activity then a cooling stratosphere – particularly the upper stratosphere, where possible confounding effects of ozone depletion would be much less – would be expected, and indeed that is what Zerofos et al. have found. Essentially they provide empirical evidence to back up Manabe and Wetherall’s prediction about what will happen if CO2 is added to the atmosphere through human, or for that matter non-human agency.

    As for your claims about the contrasting radiative/absorbing properties of CO2 and O3 they are actually pretty similar. Both are greenhouse gases, i.e. they absorb in the longer wave IR and both strongly absorb in the UV, x-ray and gamma ray regions to which they will be exposed in the upper atmosphere It just so happens that the long wave cut off for this is a longer in ozone – about 320 nm compared with CO2 at about 230 nm. as for CO2 being a strong radiator and weak absorber in the absence of ozone you may remember from school physics that strong radiators are also strong absorbers, and vice versa. You might have thought this only applied at the macroscopic level, but it’s a universal rule, applying to single molecules as well. You really need to come up with some references to back up this CO2/O3 model of yours.

  128. Greg Gouldman says:
    August 4, 2014 at 5:37 pm
    Bill Innis: http://s11.postimg.org/lxwzon2rn/Volcanoes_and_Lower_Strat_Temps_1978_2014.png
    Bill, I’m sure we’ve discussed this graph before and the the trends you draw are bogus, hand drawn lines. The first rising line may be about right because there was a slight bump shortly before Mt P but the 19y upward trend is a figment of your imagination.
    ————————

    Greg Gouldman (since you refuse to spell my name right which is not a trait of a respectable person, I have misspelled your name on purpose – this is about the 5th time you used it as Innis) …
    Sorry, the trend is UP. Yeah UP. The lower strat temps are UP. Start over with the real numbers.

  129. Sorry for name error, not “refusal”, simple error. Apologies.

    “Sorry, the trend is UP. Yeah UP. The lower strat temps are UP. Start over with the real numbers.”

    Bill, how about you provide some “real numbers” instead of “UP”.

    I did the calculation and unless you can come up with some valid technical criticism of the way that was done and something a lot better the “UP”, I see not need to “start over”.

    m_lin = 0.00130434 +/- 0.005792 (444%)
    c = 205.534 +/- 0.06168 (0.03001%)

    Statistically indistinguishable from zero. No detectable recovery towards pre-eruption values.

    http://climategrog.wordpress.com/?attachment_id=955

  130. @Tom T … I would like to thank you for the information you provided on how CO2 operates in the stratosphere. It makes perfect sense.

  131. So Greg, let me see what you are saying. Basically the AGW camp may have found the same mysterious layer up there that they did in the ocean, only for cold temperatures passing through. This layer allows a temperature change to go through it without detection. To be clear: The oceans are said to be hiding AGW heat in deeper oceanic layers yet we find little evidence of the transition of that heat from upper layers. Now they are saying the upper stratosphere is getting colder but we find little evidence of the transition of those colder temperatures through the lower stratosphere.

  132. Stratospheric cooling should not be hyped as “fingerprint” of AGW especially the catastrophic kind. The cooling is predicted by greenhouse effect theory. Who’s denying greenhouse effect? But it doesn’t tell us how much warming is man-made vs. natural. And as already pointed out, stratospheric cooling can also have a natural cause.

  133. Some great examples of deflecting the argument away from the absence of a hotspot, onto stratospheric cooling seen above.

    The physics are inescapable. On its own, the cooling of an atmospheric layer cannot be the cause of surface warming. This would be a completely broken argument.

    The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect proposition never proposed any such thing. It proposed that CO2-driven radiative forcing (from the atmosphere) would cause warming at the surface. Radiative physics insist that layers in the atmosphere must therefore warm by more than the warming at the surface. And this point was pursued and presented in the literature by people like Ben Santer,

    Stratospheric changes may have been anticipated at some stage, but if there was any cooling, it was a secondary issue and never claimed to cause surface warming.

    We cannot observe the warming layers as they were predicted. The Enhance Greenhouse Effect is therefore falsified. It’s a dead parrot. A Norwegian Blue as stiff as a bedpost.

    It is about as credible as a theory of fairies at the bottom of the garden. It doesn’t matter if leaves can be observed blowing around the bottom of the garden – this is not some kind of secondary observation of fairies. In the same manner, stratospheric cooling cannot be introduced as a secondary indication of warming in other layers (which cannot be directly observed).

    As they say: “it’s all over, bar the shouting”

  134. “The records of the 14C content of the atmosphere and oceans contain a remarkable array of information about Earth history. Produced by cosmic rays in the upper atmosphere, 14CO2 rapidly mixes throughout the troposphere and exchanges with the reactive carbon reservoirs of the oceans and biosphere, where it decays. For the past 11,000 years, fluctuations in the atmospheric 14C have been largely produced by changes in the solar magnetic field. Many researchers believe that carbon cycle changes, tied to deep ocean circulation changes are a significant cause of atmospheric 14C fluctuations between 11,000 and 15,000 years before present. On longer time scales, changes in the Earth’s magnetic field intensity impact the 14C content of the atmosphere, producing positive 14C anomalies during intervals of weaker geomagnetic field.”

    http://radiocarbon.ldeo.columbia.edu/research/radiocarbon.htm

  135. Dr. Strangelove says: “Stratospheric cooling should not be hyped as “fingerprint” of AGW especially the catastrophic kind. The cooling is predicted by greenhouse effect theory. Who’s denying greenhouse effect? ”

    Careful Doc, you are confounding two different things.

    No one is questioning the radiative properties of CO2 . That does not imply acceptance of any and all of the various things that allegedly “predicted” by “greenhouse theory” ( which is an ever mutable hypothesis, not a theory).

    The paper cited here is methodical mess. It claims to remove natural variability, like volcanoes, but clearly does not because the disruption of the two events is still clearly present after their data mangling.

    This post 1980 period, which still contains the volcano induced cooling, is then fitted with a linear model and voila! : proof of increased AGW.

    The literature they cite , including Randal et al 2009, clearly identifies the step nature of the changes in this period yet they try to regress it using only AOD which can never match the step change since it is at the same level a few years after the events.

    They quite knowingly regress against something that does not fit. This guarantees that the drop will remain in the data they claim to have adjusted for natural effects.

    If they have failed to account for the nature of the change as described in their own references, it is hard to see this as anything but deliberate malfeasance.

  136. OK, perhaps it’s best not to infer motivation. It may be better to say deliberate malfeasance or gross incompetence.

  137. “Co­smic rays enter the earth’s atmosphere in large numbers every day. For example, every person is hit by about half a million cosmic rays every hour. It is not uncommon for a cosmic ray to collide with an atom in the atmosphere, creating a secondary cosmic ray in the form of an energetic neutron, and for these energetic neutrons to collide with nitrogen atoms. When the neutron collides, a nitrogen-14 (seven protons, seven neutrons) atom turns into a carbon-14 atom (six protons, eight neutrons) and a hydrogen atom (one proton, zero neutrons). Carbon-14 is radioactive, with a half-life of about 5,700 years.”

  138. “So you can imagine it came as a shock when, just yesterday, nature released a paper showing a big, short-lived spike in carbon-14 levels way back in the 8th Century! By looking at the tree rings of ancient Japanese Cedars, you can see a rise in the concentration of carbon-14 that starts in the 770s, peaks in the 780s and then falls off.
    What does this correspond to, in terms of creating this carbon-14? Well, there were no nearby supernovae that happened at that time, so that’s out. There’s no evidence of an unusually large solar flare or any other bizarre solar activity, so that can’t be the culprit, either. What this appears to correspond to, at least at this preliminary stage, is an increase in cosmic rays.”

    http://scienceblogs.com/startswithabang/2012/06/04/the-cosmic-story-of-carbon-14/

  139. In reply to:

    Matthew R Marler says:
    August 4, 2014 at 9:45 am
    John Who: So, is it “warming causes cooling”
    or “cooling causes warming”?
    CO2 causes surface and troposphere warming (that’s the theory), but causes stratospheric cooling.
    William:
    The warmists have ignored other explanations for the cooling of the stratosphere and have ignored observations that support the assertion that the majority of the warming in the last 50 years (more than 90%) is due to solar magnetic cycle modulation of planetary clouds, rather than CO2. As low level clouds reflect short wave radiation up into space and as a portion of the short wave radiation is absorbed in the stratosphere by ozone, a reduction in low planetary clouds will cause surface warming and will cause the stratosphere to cool.

    A reduction in low level clouds as the explanation for the surface warming in the last 50 years explains why the increase in warming suddenly stopped 17 years, 10 months ago. The mechanism that caused there to be a reduction in low level clouds primarily at high latitudes had peaked.

    A reduction in low level clouds caused by solar magnetic cycle changes rather than the increase in atmospheric CO2 explains the cyclic warming and cooling of the planet in the paleo record (both hemispheres) with warming and cooling occurring primarily at high latitudes (i.e. Same pattern of warming that we observed in the last 50 years). The solar magnetic cycle modulation of planetary clouds explains why the warm periods in the paleo record occur when the solar magnetic cycle is high and the cold periods occur when the solar magnetic cycle is low.

    As CO2 is more or less evenly distributed in the atmosphere the potential for warming due to the increase in atmospheric CO2 should be the roughly the same for all latitudes. As the amount of forcing produced by the increase in CO2 is directly proportional to the amount of long wave radiation that is emitted to space prior to the increase in atmospheric CO2, all else being the same the most amount of warming that should occur due to the increase in atmospheric CO2 should have occurred in the tropics where there is the most amount of long wave radiation emitted to space prior to the increase in CO2 and where there is ample water to amplify the CO2 forcing change.

    The fact that there is almost no tropical region warming observed supports the observation/assertion that there is no tropical tropospheric warming at roughly 8km. The CO2 theory predicts that high altitudes in the atmosphere will warm more than lower regions of the atmosphere due to the increase in atmospheric CO2 due to two reasons.

    Due to the lapse rate (the amount of water vapour in the atmosphere changes with altitude due to the cooling of the atmosphere with altitude) there is comparatively more relative water vapour in the atmosphere at lower regions in the atmosphere than higher regions in the atmosphere. The greenhouse gases absorb and emitted specific bands frequency bands. As the emission bands of water vapour and CO2 overlap and due to the number of CO2 molecules per unit volume prior to the increase in atmospheric CO2, the majority of the warming due to the increase in atmospheric CO2 was predicted to occur at higher regions of the troposphere where there is less water compared to CO2 and where there were less CO2 molecules per unit volume prior to the increase in CO2.

    If the CO2 predicted high altitude CO2 warming had occur, the warming of the atmosphere by the increase in CO2 would have enabled the higher altitude regions of the atmosphere to hold more water vapour which would then have cause the water vapour amplification of the CO2 forcing to occur. The predicted water vapour amplification of the CO2 forcing change is not due to an increase in surface evaporation but rather due to the predicted higher altitude CO2 warming.
    The warming of the higher altitudes in the troposphere (roughly at 8km in the tropical regions) by the increase in CO2 then per the CO2 theory warms the surface of the planet by long wave radiation.

    The observation that there is no tropospheric hot spot at 8km is supported by the observation that there is almost no long term observed warming of the tropical region. i.e. The warmists are ignoring connected logic. Their theory predicts (1) tropical tropospheric warming at 8km which in turn should cause (2) tropical region warming. (1) is not observed which supports the assertion/observation that (2) did not occur.

    Comments:
    The following are papers that explains the latitude pattern of warming does not match that predicted by the CO2 theory and the predicted tropical troposphere warming at 8km did not occur.

    http://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/0809/0809.0581.pdf

    Limits on CO2 Climate Forcing from Recent Temperature Data of Earth
    3.2 Latitude effect
    We have examined the temperature anomalies at the various latitudes enumerated above for three data sets: HadCRUT3v, and MSU_LT from UAH and from RSS. All show similar behavior. However, as explained above, we only present the results from MSU_LT_UAH. Figure 2 shows the UAH_LT anomalies for NoExtropics, Tropics, SoExtropics and Global. The average trends over the range 1979-2007 are 0.28, 0.08, 0.06 and 0.14 ºK/decade respectively. If the climate forcing were only from CO2 one would expect from property #2 (William: CO2 is after a lag of 12 months evenly distributed in the atmosphere) a small variation with latitude. However, it is noted that NoExtropics is 2 times that of the global and 4 times that of the Tropics. Thus one concludes that the climate forcing in the NoExtropics includes more than CO2 forcing. These non-CO2 effects include: land use [Peilke et al. 2007]; industrialization [McKitrick and Michaels (2007), Kalnay and Cai (2003), DeLaat and Maurellis (2006)]; high natural variability, and daily nocturnal effects [Walters et al. (2007)].

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/DOUGLASPAPER.pdf

    A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model predictions

    The following is the Greenland Ice Sheet temperature Vs atmospheric CO2 for the last 11,000 years, determined by the analysis of ice cores. The analysis shows the Greenland Ice sheet gradually becomes colder and experiences the Dansgaard-Oeschger (D-O) warming and cooling cycles (1450 year cycle plus or minus 500 years) and atmospheric CO2 gradually increases.
    Greenland ice temperature, last 11,000 years determined from ice core analysis, Richard Alley’s paper.

  140. Thanks, Tom T. I have a rough idea of how the additional cooling happens now.
    Browsing online, I read about a NEGATIVE greenhouse effect on Saturn’s moon Titan.
    Using the greenhouse model here

    http://www.geo.utexas.edu/courses/387H/Lectures/chap2.pdf

    I did a few simple calculations.

    When the atmosphere is transparent to incoming radiation from the sun and opaque to outgoing radiation from the planet, you get a positive greenhouse effect- as happens with CO2 and H20.

    When the atmosphere is opaque to incoming radiation from the sun and transparent to outgoing radiation to the planet you get a negative greenhouse effect, as happens in some frequencies on Titan- and I suppose, with O3 on Earth..

    When the atmosphere is opaque to both incoming radiation from the sun and outgoing radiation from the earth you get a zero greenhouse effect- I suppose this happens to some extent with clouds.

    Putting it all together, with CO2 alone, temperatures decrease the higher in the atmosphere you get. With O3 alone, temperatures decrease the lower in the atmosphere you get. The stratosphere temperature increase the higher in the atmosphere you get, is due to a combination of CO2s temperature decline effect- postive greenhouse, , and O3′s temperature increase effect-negative greenhouse. Add the CO2 cooling vector to the O3 warming vector, and the O3 effect overwhelms the CO2 efffect in our stratosphere.

    If CO2 increases and O3 remains the same, we add the two vectors and get a very slight
    lesser net O3 temperature increase with height.
    .

  141. As far as I can tell from the data…stratospheric cooling effectively ‘paused’ in 1994…so leaving twenty years with no statistically significant warming, whilst CO2 increased substantially.

  142. William Astley says:
    August 5, 2014 at 4:53 am
    As low level clouds reflect short wave radiation up into space and as a portion of the short wave radiation is absorbed in the stratosphere by ozone, a reduction in low planetary clouds will cause surface warming and will cause the stratosphere to cool.

    The short wave radiation that could be absorbed by O3 (UV A & B) has already been absorbed on the first pass and water vapor and clouds are also strong absorbers in that wavelength range so there will be no back scattered light to be absorbed so your proposed mechanism doesn’t happen.

  143. Bill H,

    I’m going to go with willfully obtuse to describe your last post. No one has that poor of reading comprehension. At this point you are just lying. Your entire post is a sting of lies by context where you assert that things I said about one subject were said about another. Thank you for proving my point forms of lying specifically lying by context. You really dont think that lying by context is lying do you?

    #1 I have never said that increasing CO2 doesn’t cool the stratosphere. I have questioned why and its claimed direct relationship to anthropogenic global warming.

    #2 I never said that Manabe and Wetherall was junk. I said that that Zerofos et. al. Is junk. At this point you are lying.

    #3 Manabe and Wetherall does show stratospheric cooling due to CO2 but they do not attribute the physical cause. All they say about it is “The larger the mixing ratio of carbon dioxide, the colder is the equilibrium temperature of the stratosphere”. No where in the paper do they claim that it is due to a decrease in upwelling long wave radiation. I implicitly challenged you to provide a quote from the paper saying as much. Now I’m directly challenging you to provide a quote that supports your assertion that Manabe and Wetherall claims ““long wave radiation would increasingly be absorbed in the troposphere with increasing CO2 leading to less long wave radiation reaching the stratosphere”.

    #4 Grab a dictionary and read the definition of misanthropy.

    #5 You are back tracking and now trying to argue that CO2 causes cooling in the stratosphere while ignoring that your assertion was that this was because “long wave radiation would increasingly be absorbed in the troposphere with increasing CO2 leading to less long wave radiation reaching the stratosphere”. Again I challenge you to support that assertion.

    #6 In the issue of radiation and absorption you are looking monocularlly. Very little long wave radiation reaches the stratosphere. CO2 in the stratosphere absorbs and radiates the lions share of its energy in the stratosphere through both radiation and conduction from O3 which is excited by shortwave radiation. Bing mostly transparent to short wave radiation CO2 in the stratosphere does not significantly increase the stratospheres ability to absorb energy but it does significantly increase its ability to radiate radiate the energy absorbed by the O3 in the stratosphere.

    I await what other lies of context you will make next.

  144. I have another good anology.

    Saying that stratospheric cooling and anthropogenic global warming are physically related is like saying tat pissing and drowning a physically related. Same cause, water, but totally different process.

  145. Reblogged this on Public Secrets and commented:
    An atmospheric “hotspot” was supposed to be one of the indicators of anthropogenic global warming. But, said hot spot never appeared. Now we see the stratosphere has been cooling, which a new paper suggests is a better signal of… global warming. Naturally. Click the link to read more.

  146. Climate Weenie says, August 4, 2014 at 9:38 am:

    “(…) the MSU data sets seem to indicate the continued cooling.

    The effect of stratospheric cooling is to slightly reduce RF at the tropopause.”

    The MSU data sets seem to indicate no such thing. In fact, they show very clearly that there hasn’t been ANY lower stratospheric cooling at all for the last 20 years (since 1994, after the effects of the Pinatubo stratospheric aerosols – destroying tons of O3 – had finally dissipated):
    ftp://ftp.ssmi.com/msu/graphics/tls/plots/rss_ts_channel_tls_global_land_and_sea_v03_3.png

    During that same time, about a third of the alleged rise in atmospheric CO2 since pre-industrial times occurred (358-398 ppm).

    “Stratospheric cooling is a direct result of CO2 calculated from radiative transfer models alone ( the ones we have confidence in ).”

    In other words, your ‘radiative transfer models’ (the ones you have such confidence in) failed miserably.

  147. Climate Weenie says, August 4, 2014 at 10:27 am:

    “So, a radiative model of an increased CO2 atmosphere will yield reduced net longwave at the troposphere.

    That being the case, the layers above experience less energy.

    Which part is a myth? and why?”

    The problem of this radiative model of yours is that total OLR from the tropopause hasn’t descreased over the last three decades, as the theory apparently postulates. It has rather increased in step with tropospheric temperatures, as the real world postulates.

  148. William Astley: The warmists have ignored other explanations for the cooling of the stratosphere and have ignored observations that support the assertion that the majority of the warming in the last 50 years (more than 90%) is due to solar magnetic cycle modulation of planetary clouds, rather than CO2. As low level clouds reflect short wave radiation up into space and as a portion of the short wave radiation is absorbed in the stratosphere by ozone, a reduction in low planetary clouds will cause surface warming and will cause the stratosphere to cool.

    I agree that the warmist case is full of holes, and warmists dismiss too casually or don’t consider at all other explanations for a variety of changes of the last centuries and decades. My post was directed toward a particular rather shallow comment.

  149. gregfreemyer seems to be closest to what is going on.

    This note is to isolate the basic physics from the additional complications of water and O3.

    Gas molecules have discrete energy levels. If a gas molecule is excited it will after a sufficient period of time emit the energy and lose it. The rate of this process is given by the Einstein coefficient of radiation, in a time on the order of h-bar/delta energy. Excitation can occur from either absorption of a photon or from a collision with another molecule. If the molecule is not subsequently excited, it will eventually radiate its energy until it reaches a state consistent with absolute zero.

    At issue is the balance between excitation and deexcitation by radiation and collision processes where there is at best “local thermodynamic equilibrium” even at low altitudes.

    At lower altitudes where density and temperatures are higher, collisions deexcitation is relatively more likely than direct radiation, so absorbed radiation gets dumped into the kinetic heat of the neighboring molecules. But at higher altitudes where density and temperatures are lower, radiation of energy is relatively more likely. Left alone long enough, a molecule can radiate its heat thereby reducing the temperature of the local ensemble.

    The statement is wrong that “Greenhouse gases (CO2, O3, CFC) absorb infra-red radiation from the surface of the Earth and trap the heat in the troposphere” . Gas molecules don’t trap heat.

    It remains to be seen if CO2 might cause a warming in the troposphere under the right conditions. But I agree with Mosher that its primary fingerprint is stratospheric cooling.

  150. ren,
    Are those graphs from NOAA for global relative humidity?

    300 mb relative humidity has dropped 10% globally since 1950.
    600 mb relative humidity dropped 5% from 1950-82 then was steady at the lower level.
    Surface relative humidity has not changed that much.

    At the very least, this should have resulted in much less cirrus/high level cloudiness.

    During warming at the surface, this would be consistent with Lindzens Iris theory, which claims that the earth clouds are like an iris is to the eye. Your iris contracts to allow less light in, when the light is bright.
    Lindzen says that the earths surface warming has a negative feedback from decreasing cirrus clouds that allow more heat to radiate out to space.

    Only problem here……………. is that these dropping 600 mb rh values were happening during modest global cooling in the 50′s-70′s and continued.
    All of the drop at 600 mb was during that period prior to 1982.

    We have increased low level moisture and one or the sources that is underestimated is the increase in evapo(transpiration) from the increase in plant growth that has resulted from atmospheric fertilization from increasing CO2.

    This lowers the lifting condensation level and base of clouds. Cloud height has been measured to to decrease during the last decade.

    Clouds that radiate from a lower level(and warmer temperature) are more effectively radiators(to space) vs high clouds that trap more heat.

  151. Interesting comments A. Ames. But you may be missing the point.

    At the top of this page, it says “The paper suggests that stratospheric cooling is a “more suitable” signal of anthropogenic global warming than trying to find a mid-troposphere hot spot (which was previously considered to be the definitive “fingerprint” of man-made global warming)”

    Steven Mosher then said: “Stratospheric cooling is the better fingerprint.”

    Mosher never said stratospheric cooling of the stratosphere is a fingerprint of CO2. His comment has to be taken in the context of the subject of the post – we can take it that he meant the better fingerprint of the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect.

    But the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect claims that adding CO2 to the atmosphere will cause warming of the surface by radiative physics. This is amplified to its more alarming variant … that the warming will be catastrophic.

    So we have that ambiguous language once again. Stratospheric cooling is a better finger print for change of CO2 (as you say). But it does not follow that it is the better fingerprint for the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect.

    The best fingerprint for the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect is observation of the physical changes as predicted: that would be the hotspot (cooling stratosphere or otherwise). Santer tried to find evidence for vertical amplification (as he called it) and failed.

    Conclusion: this is a dead parrot.

  152. Kristian says:
    August 5, 2014 at 12:57 pm
    Climate Weenie says, August 4, 2014 at 9:38 am:

    “(…) the MSU data sets seem to indicate the continued cooling.

    The effect of stratospheric cooling is to slightly reduce RF at the tropopause.”

    The MSU data sets seem to indicate no such thing. In fact, they show very clearly that there hasn’t been ANY lower stratospheric cooling at all for the last 20 years (since 1994, after the effects of the Pinatubo stratospheric aerosols – destroying tons of O3 – had finally dissipated):

    Nice ‘bait and switch’, the subtle change from ‘stratospheric cooling’ to ‘lower stratospheric cooling’! Whereas the expected effect of CO2 is in the upper stratosphere not the lower where O3 is expected to be dominant.

  153. ***
    Phil. says:
    August 5, 2014 at 7:34 pm

    Nice ‘bait and switch’, the subtle change from ‘stratospheric cooling’ to ‘lower stratospheric cooling’! Whereas the expected effect of CO2 is in the upper stratosphere not the lower where O3 is expected to be dominant.
    ***

    Huh? CO2′s dominant effect is in the upper troposphere near the tropopause where its characteristic band can freely radiate upward.

  154. Stephen Wilde says:
    August 4, 2014 at 12:32 pm

    “The stratosphere cooled whilst the sun was active then stopped cooling around 2000 and may now be warming.

    Since the change in trend coincided with the decline in solar activity it seems that an active sun cools the stratosphere and warms the troposphere whilst a quiet sun does the opposite.”

    That is right Stephen, solar activity dominates the cooling and warming of the stratosphere, and for that matter the troposphere via its effect on cloud formation, surface pressure and especially the Polar Jets:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/01/31/ozone-depletion-trumps-greenhouse-gas-increase-in-jet-stream-shift/

    It is all linked to the sites of formation and destruction of ozone that is linked to the level and wavelength of solar UV as the cycles reach peak and decline as well as between solar cycles of differing amplitude. When the Sun is active ozone is destroyed by NO2, hence the famous scare over ozone holes during the late 20th century. Since ozone absorbs LWR emitted from the surface and UV from the Sun its reduction in level in the upper stratosphere causes stratospheric cooling. However the ozone that is formed is found in the lower stratosphere and upper troposphere and likewise absobs LWR and UV radiation warming the upper the troposphere so having an effect on cloud formation. When the Sun is quiet, as now, the reduction in the destruction of ozone from a less active solar wind increases the ozone level in the upper stratosphere and the stratosphere warms.

    http://www.space.dtu.dk/upload/institutter/space/forskning/06_projekter/isac/wp501b.pdf

    Solar activity Ozone Mes/Strat Ozone Strat /Trop Warming or/Cooling Jets
    >45km Stratopause <45km Stratopause Mes/Strat/Trop
    High Decreased Increased Cooling/Warming Zonal
    Low Increased Decreased Warming/Cooling Meridional

    The warming role of CO2 is minimal as it has a low heat capcity compared to ozone with the evidence showing that it has the effect of cooling the stratosphere and thermosphere:
    CO2 acts together with NO2 as a huge cooling mechanism for Earth's thermosphere

    http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.com/2014/03/new-paper-finds-no-effect-of.html

    So stratospheric warming and cooling is indeed a good fingerprint of climate change but not of CAGW from anthropgenic emissions of CO2 rather of natural variation due to solar activity. These activities are well stated in articles by Earl Happ:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/author/erlhapp/

    http://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2013/08/11/the-turning-point/

    Support for the ozone effect is given in a study by Polvani and Solomon:

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2012/2012JD017719.shtml

  155. I want to sincerely thank all the contributors/commenters on this thread. It has been very informative on my part. I have read (closely) every comment and have just completed a second round of reading the comments even more closely. I will do so a third time as this is most interesting and the discussion is in what my understanding of what the scientific principle should be all about.

    Again, thanks to all.

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