Claim: A warmer world will be a hazier one

From the UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA – RIVERSIDE and the Department of Modeled Inconsistent Results comes this unlikely claim: that there will be more of an aerosol load with global warming. Right – negative feedback anyone?

Sunset haze over State College-, PA source: NOAA SPC

Sunset haze over State College-, PA source: NOAA SPC

A warmer world will be a hazier one

Using a suite of computer models, UC Riverside-led study finds most aerosol species will increase under climate change associated with greenhouse-gas-induced warming

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – Aerosols, tiny solid and liquid particles suspended in the atmosphere, impact the environment by affecting air quality and alter the Earth’s radiative balance by either scattering or absorbing sunlight to varying degrees. What impact does climate change, induced by greenhouse gases (GHGs), have on the aerosol “burden”–the total mass of aerosols in a vertical column of air?

Past research done on climate models has found inconsistent results: Depending on the model, climate change was associated with an increase or decrease in aerosol burden. But a new study using the newest and state-of-the-art computer models, published today in Nature Climate Change, shows that under climate change associated with GHG-induced warming most aerosol species will register a robust increase, with implications for future air quality.

“Our work on the models shows that nearly all aerosol species will increase under GHG-induced climate change,” said climatologist Robert J. Allen, an assistant professor in theDepartment of Earth Sciences at the University of California, Riverside and the lead author of the research paper. “This includes natural aerosols, like dust and sea salt, and also anthropogenic aerosols, like sulfate, black carbon and primary organic matter. Stricter reductions in aerosol emissions will be necessary for attaining a desired level of air quality through the 21st century.”

Allen explained that an increase in GHGs will not only warm the planet, but also affect climate in many different ways. For example, GHGs will lead to changes in the hydrological cycle and large-scale atmospheric circulation. These changes, in turn, will affect air quality and the distribution of aerosols–irrespective of changes in aerosol emissions.

“Changes in the hydrological cycle and atmospheric circulation are complex, however, and could lead to opposing changes in the distribution of aerosols,” he said. “The models show that GHG warming will lead to more global-mean precipitation, which should reduce aerosol burden because the aerosols are rained out; however, GHG warming will also lead to a decrease in precipitation in certain regions, as well as a global mean decrease in the frequency of precipitation. These latter two changes, which would be expected to increase the burden of atmospheric aerosols, outweigh the former change. The result is more aerosols in the atmosphere.”

Allen and his team found their results using a multi-model data set: the Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Model Intercomparison Project (ACCMIP), which is supplemented with the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project version 5 (CMIP5). The researchers analyzed the ACCMIP and CMIP5 data bases, using model experiments with fixed aerosol emissions (based on the year 2000), but different climates–one based on 2000, the other based on 2100, with the difference of the two experiments indicating the aerosol response to GHG induced warming.

The researchers also conducted similarly designed experiments using the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Atmosphere Model (CAM) versions 4 and 5. Results from these models showed that even when emissions are held fixed, GHG-induced warming by 2100 drives an increase in aerosol burden and elevated concentrations of aerosol species on the Earth’s surface.

“The surprising finding is the consistency of the increase in aerosols over all the different models,” Allen said. “We associate this increase in aerosols to a decrease in aerosol wet removal, the primary removal mechanism, which is driven by a decrease in large-scale precipitation over land–particularly during the Northern Hemisphere summer months of June-July-August.”

Future research avenues for his research team include a deeper understanding of the mechanism by which climate change drives an increase in aerosol burden. Specifically, the team is interested in investigating why models project a decrease in large-scale precipitation in the Northern Hemisphere during June-July-August.

###

Allen was joined in the research by William Landuyt at ExxonMobil Research and Engineering, NJ; and Steven T. Rumbold at the University of Reading, the United Kingdom.

The research was supported by grants from NASA and the National Science Foundation.

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80 thoughts on “Claim: A warmer world will be a hazier one

    • With the rise of the current generation of grads, who learned the usefulness of models in college. It seems no one taught them that only models that have been extensively verified with real empirical data are useful. Dang kidz these days.

      • Even models that have been verified with real data still have to be used carefully because you can always push models outside those areas in which they are known to be valid.

    • It wouldn’t matter so much if the MSM weren’t waiting outside like slavering dogs reprinting every crazy result like it’s the end of the world.

    • This ‘study’ is yet another fine example of GIGO: garbage in/garbage out.
      As for the ‘dust’ and other things, during Ice Ages, there is lots and lots of dust and droughts due to water being locked up in ice glaciers and a colder planet and colder oceans leads to less humidity. This is painfully obvious and totally ignored by these computer game playing ‘scientists’.

    • “The data doesn’t matter. We’re not basing our recommendations on the data. We’re basing them on the climate models.”
      ~ Prof. Chris Folland ~ (Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research)

  1. Let us see. Warmer means higher absolute humidity. What happens to all the increased moisture? Willis notes that thermal changes act quickly to regulate both temperature and humidity, and ignore the vagaries of CO2 variation.
    This modeling exercise reminds me of studies in economics, where we looked at changing a variable with the proviso that “everything else remains unchanged.” It’s no wonder that our economic analyses were worth nothing. “He who controls the assumptions controls the outcomes.”

    • I live in a region of Canada where the swing between a summer high of 35C and a winter low of -35C is common.
      On summer days you can see the moisture in the air compared to winter days.
      Why is this a surprise to UC Riverside?

      • I like to say the humidity is so thick you can cut it with a knife. You don’t know hot until you get a 100 degree day (38C) with a dew point of 60 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. With that much water in the air, the haze is thick and it is sometimes harder to breathe. I’ve had to work outside on a roof in that heat. I didn’t mind it.

      • Contaminants in the air cause haze, humidity by itself does not.
        Here in Florida, and in much of the tropics, the air is as clear as can be…white clouds down to the horizon most days…you can sometimes see the tops of storms that are nearly two hundred miles away.
        Seeing clearly through 100 miles of air is common here…a near daily occurrence.
        And the dew point is way up into the mid to upper seventies every single day from May until October.

      • “On summer days you can see the moisture in the air compared to winter days.
        Why is this a surprise to UC Riverside?”
        It never rains in California. Girl, di’n’t they warn you?

      • These guys live in the Lost Angeles basin where it is always warm and dry and they live there because it is warm and dry and everyone just wants a little bit of rain and only at night, none of this ‘snow/ice’ every winter like we get in the northern states.

  2. “Aerosols will increase, unless they don’t, in which case you can’t blame us because we hedged the language so much it means practically nothing. Thanks for the grant money.”

  3. “Allen was joined in the research by William Landuyt at ExxonMobil Research and Engineering, NJ; and Steven T. Rumbold at the University of Reading, the United Kingdom.”
    This must be a different Exxon than the one the dirt-worshipping lefties are trying to RICO. Otherwise, that would rather embarrassing.

    • Marcus! I have told you before.
      Format your output into a database and build some B+ tree indexes. Then pipe it through a graphics enhancer, and finally put on some nice lipstick as a finishing touch.
      This way, your output is nicely formatted, sorted, has pretty, enhanced graphics, and is cute.
      Your Welcome.

  4. Wouldn’t more aerosols mean more clouds from cosmic ray interaction , thus, lowering global temperature ????

    • Marcus: technically, no. The CCN are formed by GCR’s. In this case the CCN are in the form of particulates so the two mechanisms run in parallel. So there would be additional cooling but in the way you suggest. Water vapour would condense on the additional particles which would have (and already do have) two causes.

  5. So warming increases aerosols, which aren’t removed because the warming inhibits rain. Since the aerosols aren’t reduced by rain, they cause a reduced absorption and retention of heat, leading to overall cooling, which allows water vapor to condense and become rain, which removes the aerosols … sounds like a system seeking equilibrium to this amateur …

    • You’re not supposed to be logical and screw up the theories that the nice climate modelers have predicted.

    • Their more precipitation / less precipitation reminds me of this study ranking US cities –
      http://stories.weather.com/disruptionindex – Climate Disruption Index.
      Both Mann and Hayhoe have speaking parts.
      Part of the listing.
      25. Newark, New Jersey
      23. Madison, Wisconsin
      22. Lincoln, Nebraska
      18. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
      13. Portland, Oregon
      10. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
      8. St. Paul, Minnesota
      ** 5. Kansas City, Missouri
      2. Minneapolis, Minnesota
      What do these cities have in common? They will all soon be affected by CO2 induced – extreme drought / precipitation
      ** Kansas City, Missouri gets both and extreme flooding too. Lucky them.
      But not sure how global this is as you look at the rankings.
      8. St. Paul, Minnesota Population: 294,873
      St. Paul is the first city on our list to be significantly impacted by extreme future drought. “We expect dry places to get drier, wet places to get wetter,” Easterling said. Extreme precipitation will also likely increase, earning this city spot 8 on the list.
      2. Minneapolis, Minnesota Population: 400,070
      Minneapolis could get pummeled from a lot of different angles, making it number 2 on our list. The city itself will be a good deal hotter than rural places close by. It has seen precipitation increase by almost 40 percent since 1958, a trend expected to continue. Drought here will also continue to worsen.
      Notice the different affect shown and ranked position. Written and Designed by: Michele Berger, she needs to get out a little more and realize they are called the Twin Cities because they are 8 miles downtown to downtown. I thought CO2 was a global gas.

  6. “The surprising finding is the consistency of the increase in aerosols over all the different models,” Allen said. “We associate this increase in aerosols to a decrease in aerosol wet removal, the primary removal mechanism, which is driven by a decrease in large-scale precipitation over land–particularly during the Northern Hemisphere summer months of June-July-August.”
    At some point in time in the distant future, we might be living in a climate as bad as the 1930’s.

    • Error is correlated across models. It’s not surprising at all that there’s consistency over all the different models. They all make the same mistakes.

  7. It be interesting to see a graph of smog in various cities correlated by that city’s average annual temperature.
    Oh, wait, that’d be real life that would being studied to answer the question if warmer temps would cause a net increase in particulates.
    Never mind.

  8. Specifically, the team is interested in investigating why models project a decrease in large-scale precipitation in the Northern Hemisphere during June-July-August.
    Good god, they’re computer programs, they do what they are programmed to do! Have we so lost touch with reality that we now understand computer models to be a reality unto themselves that may be studied without reference to the computer programs from which they are comprised? We don’t study the code to see how it works, we study the output on the assumption that it models reality? How did these models become reality? Magic?
    Arthur C Clarke would bust a gut laughing. Science has become indistinguishable from magic.

    • I think they know what the code lines do – software engineers usually know – but what the modelled climate does is a separate thing. It is convenient for them their science is based on the model output, so it remains true in its own reality.

      • The models are sentient now. They’re mostly underwater and only come up now and then for minority reports.

      • You are making the assumption that any software engineer has ever been anywhere near the model. I have the modelE1_pub source code on my machine. Roughly 130 000 lines of Fortran in roughly 130 files. It’s actually pretty amazing the number of parameters they have thought to include and the amount of work that must have gone into it. The code is a lot cleaner than the code in the ClimateGate dump (I have that code too), but it shows the scars of history, and I am still of the opinion that building a credible model requires *at least* physicists, numerical analysts (rather than references to ‘Numerical Recipes’), and skilled software engineers, not to mention a lot of testing. This kind of stuff is really challenging to write and harder to test, and if you think
        !@param Z1I thickness of first layer ice (m)
        REAL*8, PARAMETER :: Z1I = .1d0
        (actual code from modelE1_pub) is a good way to name something, you’re certainly not making it any easier. This is two models I’ve seen that don’t *look* as if any software engineers were involved; surely there is enough grant money to pay for a few? I would really love to see some of these programs reviewed by professional software engineers. Better still, I’d like to see their test suites and procedures so reviewed.

      • I didn’t say they all are professional as you usually think professionalism. Many software engineers are not very professional.

  9. The good news – Models show that increased CO2 and temperatures will make all backyards worldwide, suitable for growing a family money tree.

  10. As I recall, a previous paper by Dr. Robert Allen showed cloud cover had a NEGATIVE 21 watts/M^2 on earth’s energy budget, which is more than an order of magnitude above CO2’s gross forcing of just 1.9 watts/M^2 (pre-industrial levels of 280ppm to present day 400ppm)…
    An increase in airborne particulates would increase cloud seeds and cause cloud cover to increase, which would have a cooling feedback effect from increased albedo…
    Any additional CO2 induced warming would also increase ocean evaporation, which would also increase cloud cover and act as another negative cloud feedback.
    It seems counterintuitive that increased airborne particulates would lead to enhanced manmade global warming.

  11. “The researchers analyzed the ACCMIP and CMIP5 data bases, using model experiments with fixed aerosol emissions (based on the year 2000), but different climates–one based on 2000, the other based on 2100…” Yes, use that data set we collected back in 2100. (why will none of these researchers admit to using modeled inputs?)

  12. Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
    Those days of soda and pretzels and beer
    Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
    Dust off the sun and moon and sing a song of cheer…
    Songwriters: TOBIAS/BRADTKE/CARSTE)

  13. So much for the hope of solar power, which greatly prefers direct lighting. More indirect lighting, more times like when it’s the peak of summer yet solar panels yield practically nothing during weeks on end of persistent haze.
    And how many steady breezes are available for wind turbines on hazy days to replace the lost electricity?
    Maybe there will still be some un-hazy bone-dry desert areas where they can erect some more unqualified solar successes like Ivanpah…

  14. “…most aerosol species…”
    I always thought that the term ‘species’ was reserved for living organisms. So aerosols reproduce?

    • “Species” is the correct term. There are classic formations of aerosols and classic elemental compositions. When they are seen and recognised, they are categorised correctly.
      The idea that they are all equally toxic is of course baseless and against common knowledge.
      One of the most toxic airborne substances known is platinum. Platinum mines and processing rooms have extremely tight worker exposure conditions. One a person is dosed, they survived but are sensitised, not inoculated. They can never be exposed to platinum again of they die from the reaction.

  15. Solar Dimming made the world cooler during 1950-1980.
    Solar Brightening made it warmer during 1980-2000
    The sun covered in haze is no more a problem in the developed world, but in China.
    (Wild 2012 has more on this)
    Clean air act has a function.

    • No assumptions, please. The major air pollution zones are Indonesia and India,. China is usually much cleaner than both.
      North-western Indonesia, through its peatland burning, emits more CO2 than the whole USA.

  16. The alarmist rhetoric is reaching a fever tipping-point. Wouldn’t be anything to do with the Paris Panic-fest parfty, would it?

  17. Allen and his team found their results using a multi-model data set: the Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Model Intercomparison Project (ACCMIP), which is supplemented with the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project version 5 (CMIP5). The researchers analyzed the ACCMIP and CMIP5 data bases, using model experiments with fixed aerosol emissions (based on the year 2000), but different climates–one based on 2000, the other based on 2100, with the difference of the two experiments indicating the aerosol response to GHG induced warming.
    The researchers also conducted similarly designed experiments using the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Atmosphere Model (CAM) versions 4 and 5. Results from these models showed that even when emissions are held fixed, GHG-induced warming by 2100 drives an increase in aerosol burden and elevated concentrations of aerosol species on the Earth’s surface.

    Models all the way down. Computer games. Enough said.

  18. ‘Specifically, the team is interested in investigating why models project a decrease in large-scale precipitation in the Northern Hemisphere during June-July-August.’
    One would expect that the more nidus for cloud formation, the more cloud,cooling and eventually more precipitation.
    This would then wash out the particulate aerosols, leading to less precipitation.
    A natural feedback.
    Is the program capable of capturing such ’emergent phenomenon’ at a grid size and frequency that mirrors reality?
    If not it has no predictive skill.

    • “One would expect that the more [CCN] for cloud formation, the more cloud,cooling and eventually more precipitation.”
      Correct.

  19. “Aerosols, tiny solid and liquid particles suspended in the atmosphere, impact the environment by affecting air quality and alter the Earth’s radiative balance by either scattering or absorbing sunlight to varying degrees. What impact does climate change, induced by greenhouse gases (GHGs), have on the aerosol “burden”–the total mass of aerosols in a vertical column of air?”
    Keep your eye on the ball. There is an initiative at Berkeley giving input to the WHO that models ‘exposure’ from cooking stoves. At this very moment in Accra, Ghana the leadership of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves (GACC) is presenting a pro-health argument based on that WHO modelling. This meeting is their bi-annual event that promotes the dangers and solutions for people who cook with fire.
    The creeping of ‘aerosol dangers’ into the discussion of everything is predicated on the twin dangers of ‘burning solid fuels’ and ‘climate change that increases the background level of particulate matter’ (PM).
    There is a three-pronged strategy invovled:
    – estimate that exposure to PM2.5 causes specific deaths, recently raised (again) from 4.3 to 4.88m deaths p.a. attributable to cooking fire smoke
    – estimate that a warmer world will have an increased level of PM2.5 all of which assumed in the WHO models to be ‘equally toxic’
    – drop the WHO-‘allowable’ level of PM2.5 exposure to a level so low that ambient background concentrations in perfectly natural environments are defined as ‘toxic to human health’.
    The idea is to trap the public in a squeeze: the WHO is making claims of needed reductions in ‘exposure’ while the GACC and Berkeley claim that solid fuels ‘cannot’ be burned cleanly enough to be ‘safe’ while climate modellers claim that in a future warmer world the air will be filled with haze, which is unavoidable particulate matter. No doubt the ‘present situation’ will hover (in the models) on the tipping point of ‘liveable’ but future projections will ‘tip over’.
    Notes for consideration:
    – Water droplets are technically particulate matter according to the definition
    – The Blue Mountain haze in Tennessee will be defined as harmful to human health and the trees should be removed (or something).
    – All smoke, whatever the source, is considered equally toxic, whether it is black carbon, organic carbon, fly ash or evaporated fluoride and mercury.
    – The ‘unavoidable conclusion’ will be that nowhere on earth will it be safe to breathe except through a HEPA filter. This modeled future will be blamed on ‘global warming’ and ‘climate change’.
    Other notes:
    – A warmer world will have more rainfall (cf: 6000 BC the Sahara was green)
    – More rain means more efficient extraction of particulate matter from the air, resulting in cleaner air.
    – The greening of the Earth will reduce fugitive dust from dry lands such as the farmland around Beijing which contributes as much as 50% to the aerosol matter in the capital. Ditto the Western USA.
    – The ‘cooling haze’ will not materialise unless the physics of cloud and rainfall formation change appreciably. That is unlikely.
    – Without PM in the air there would be no rain as all droplets form on cloud condensation nuclei (CCN).

    • OMG – this all sounds very familiar.
      And, of course, we get this absurd power grab, instead of taking a direct course toward solving the very real and simple problem of massive inhalation of smoke from open fires and mud stoves in dwellings in the developed world.
      Usually shit. Don’t solve the problem directly. But let it fester whilst using it as an excuse to create heavy punitive sanctions upon the activities of people of the developed world who are not at significant risk.
      As far as I am aware their are three major causes of inhalation of carcinogenic particulates in the world:
      1. Smoking.
      2. Open fires and non-flued mud stoves in dwellings.
      3. Burning vegetable oil from cooking at high heat in open pans/woks.
      In these cases, we are discussing levels of particulates that represent a visible cloud of “smoke”. And the numbers of people affected are in the billions.
      On top of this – the solutions are public health campaigns in the affected countries and the provision of “appropriate technology”.
      Here in the UK, I have a friend who makes extremely effective stoves from old gas bottles and cheap 5mm steel plate. He can make several of these per day.
      Maybe India should hire him as an advisor.
      They certainly will not do this however. Instead WHO will doubtlessly hire a bunch of useless goons and legal experts to create a complex legal framework which shows no grasp of reality and benefit nobody. But which results in the banning of perfectly effective technology here in the west – where bans and sanctions are most effectively enforced.
      Rural indians pay scant attention to health and safety regulations – I know this from experience.
      Here in the UK the stoves which are made by my friend are already an infringement of local and national regulations.
      He can only sell them on the black market to people who break all the rules when they fit them.
      I broke the regulations on fitting a stove in the UK just two days ago.
      The approved flue is some shitty 0.5mm(ish) wall thickness pipe. Either powder coated or stainless.
      I needed to join my stove to a concrete chimney that is only about 20cm from the stove.
      This section of pipe is exposed to extreme heat.
      So I bought some 8mm wall pipe for 20GBP on eBay. And then I had a flange laser cut for another 20GBP from 12mm thick mild plate.
      My flue pipe with last for one thousand years. It’s unsinkable. What could possibly go wrong!!
      But, it is also an infringement of the stupid regulation.
      The regulations demand that I conform my installation to the officially sanctioned over-priced crap.
      This has happened to all aspects of life here in the UK.
      Everything is presided over by lawyers and regulators. In league with trade groups and insurances companies – and now – the EU and intergovernmental policy makers.
      There’s only one thing that’s guaranteed – whatever they do, it will be total bullcrap.

      • Frog
        Agree 100%. Governments and all their helpers have to justify their jobs and so, we have millions of bullshit laws and regulations of which most are useless.

    • Rain needs fine dust. Every raindrop forms around tiny dust particles. Too clean never happens because when it is dry, dust is kicked up by winds and thus, can be the nucleus of a rain drop if the humidity levels rise as cooler air pushes over warmer air. So to speak. I hope I got this right.

  20. Yeah, saw this yesterday over at phys.org. Those people should know better than posting this kind of crapola.

  21. Just a thought:
    As a non-scientist, but one who has been exposed to a lot of math and science in the past, none of this is really worth a damn, because it isn’t testable. Computer models are used a lot in astronomy, but the amount of observational data available allows much better testing. If you have a theory of stellar evolution versus, let’s say for simplicity, chemical composition, they can usually find and observe stars of similar composition but different ages( by millions of years) against which to test their models in the here and now. We have to wait decades or centuries to see if climate projections turn into predictions; so a scientist is fairly safe from having his ideas proved false during his lifetime. There is only one observable Earth and relatively accurate historical data are limited to a tiny blip in time.

    • Stoic
      Excellent article you gave link to above. Shows that increased aerosols will probably cool the Earth. I would trust these Goddard Space Flight scientists doing their work back in the 1970s much, much more than I would trust many of the political scientists of today.

  22. Well the good news is for those that do not like this study , that before long due to the ‘magic’ CO2 there be a another paper claiming to prove that CAGW will lead to ‘less’ a hazier world . Which will just has much scientific ‘value , as this one.
    Life is , after all , so much easer when you can just play ‘heads you lose tails I win ‘ and get paid for it .

  23. “But a new study using the newest and state-of-the-art computer models…”
    Oh good grief…
    Hang on, Schneider and Rasool 1971 claimed that more aerosols were going to cause a new Ice Age…

  24. History suggests that it might have been less hazy in warmer periods during the current interglacial. The standing stones at Ballochroy are aligned with The Paps of Jura 30 miles away. There are more long distance alignments but this is one that impressed me when I read about it 40+ years ago. As with many things a lot of today’s so called experts can’t believe our forebears were as smart as the evidence suggests.
    https://books.google.fr/books?id=ILBuYcGASxcC&pg=PA194&lpg=PA194&dq=standing+stones+paps+of+jura&source=bl&ots=wBltnp9aM7&sig=bWxBg4_fbzndpcytJcqvlfI9eW4&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CFUQ6AEwC2oVChMI3ouJ-76GyQIVAcAUCh1JjgYK#v=onepage&q=standing%20stones%20paps%20of%20jura&f=false

  25. Whilst Schneider and Rasool 1971 report unremarkably that aerosols could trigger a new Ice Age (since the cooling caused by recent volvanic eruptions has been well documented), their more interesting un-climatepscience PC observation is: “it is found that even by an increase by a factor of 8 in the CO2, which is highly unlikely in the next several thousand years, will produce an increase of surface temperature of 2⁰ K”.

  26. “Future research avenues for his research team include a deeper understanding of the mechanism by which climate change drives an increase in aerosol burden. Specifically, the team is interested in investigating why models project a decrease in large-scale precipitation in the Northern Hemisphere during June-July-August.”
    Er….. Couldn’t they just ask the programmers of the models?
    It boggles the mind to think that these people might actually believe what they write.

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