Guest Opinion: Dr. Tim Ball
Some claim the entire notion that human addition of CO2 to the atmosphere is causing global warming is a deliberately created myth, that it was produced to isolate CO2 as a serious environmental problem that required curtailing the economies of developed countries. To enhance the threat required endangerment to plants, animals, and humans. The list of threats is endless because proponents of AGW can take everyday natural events and say they are not ‘normal.’ They know that most don’t know what is normal, as I discussed in a previous article, and that what is a ‘normal’ climate, changes with time. Many people use these interchangeably with natural and unnatural. The list of myths attributed to global warming is endless, but one started a few years ago titled, “A complete list of things caused by global warming” keeps expanding.
There is added confusion in the climate debates because proponents continually interchange ‘natural’ and ‘normal.’ It is a reflection of the philosophical and intellectual confusions and contradictions that result from the deception. It probably also reflects the underlying anti-humanity of many extreme environmentalists. For example, in Global Warming: The Greenpeace Report (1990), edited by Jeremy Leggett, says CO2 is added to the atmosphere naturally and unnaturally. By unnatural they mean the portion comes from humans. Is it reasonable to assume that if what we do as animals is unnatural, then we are unnatural? Goethe confronted the dilemma when he said,
“The unnatural – that too is natural.”
Ironically, the marketplace passed judgment on Leggett’s work. A paperback edition is available for one (1) cent assuming you are prepared to pay the $3.99 shipping. By comparison, a 2004 second edition of a true work of science, Jean Grove’s The Little Ice Age, originally published in 1988, is available in hardcover discounted at $657.82 with free shipping.
Combine these confusions of natural and unnatural, normal and abnormal with incorrect science and you create myths such as the claim that with global warming storms will become more frequent and severe.
The most frequent type of storms, which probably kill far more people over time than hurricanes or any other extreme weather phenomenon, is Mid-Latitude Cyclones. Figure 1 shows a map of the Low-Pressure Center and the wave that forms to create Cold and Warm Fronts.
The Mid-Latitude Cyclones form along the Polar Front and track from west to east usually going through a sequence called Cyclogenesis (Figure 2).
The critical thing is not the cold air per se, but what it does when it moves. The focus on warm air created by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) for their political agenda means that most people don’t know that the cold air dictates what happens in the atmosphere. As Low Pressure intensifies the Cold air advances creating the Cold Front. This advancing air adds further instability to the warm moist air creating the potential for tornadoes. Cold air retreating creates the Warm Front.
The (IPCC) predict that with global warming these Mid-Latitude Cyclones will increase in frequency and severity. The problem is this is scientifically incorrect, which creates the dilemma that either they are incompetent or intend to deceive: either way it is an indictment.
Figure 3 is a simple schematic of the two major air masses that separate the atmosphere. It is almost the same in the Southern Hemisphere, except with latitudinal and intensity differences due to land/water ratios. The Polar Front is coincident with the line of Zero Energy Balance (ZEB) shown in Figure 4.
Figure 4 shows the average position of the ZEB and therefore the Polar Front. Figure 5 shows the average summer and winter positions.
The tracks of the storms vary seasonally as the ZEB/Polar front migrates. A second factor that influences the storm tracks are the Rossby Waves that form in the Polar Front. There are two basic patterns, Zonal (Figure 6) and Meridional (Figure 7).
Figure 6 Figure 7
The strength of the Circumpolar Vortex (Jet Stream) and intensity of the storms created are a function of the temperature difference across the Polar Front known as the Zonal Index. It is defined as;
A measure of strength of the middle-latitude westerlies, expressed as the horizontal pressure difference between 35° and 55° latitude, or as the corresponding geostrophic wind.
The pressure difference is a function of the temperature difference, the greater the temperature difference, the greater the pressure difference the stronger the winds and the potential for more severe storms. The IPCC say that global warming will occur more in the cold polar air than in the tropical air. The result of this reduces the Zonal Index and the energy potential for Mid-Latitude Cyclones.
Everybody knows a broken clock is accurate twice a day. Such is the situation with the AGW proponents claims of increased storminess, which will occur, but not because of warming but cooling. The current situation is problematic because the world is cooling as all the evidence of changing solar activity indicates. Historical evidence shows that storminess increases during cooling. Lamb identified the periods of significant cooling in the overall cooling trend from the apex of the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) to the nadir of the Little Ice Age (LIA). He identified nine distinctive features on page 452 in Climate: Present, Past, and Future. Item (6) reads,
Evidence of increasing severity of the windstorms and resulting sea floods and disasters by shifting sand in latitudes 50 – 60°N, particularly in the 13th century, and between about 1400 and 1450 and about 1530 – 1700 (the great North Sea storms of 1530, 1570, 1634 and 1694, the Hebridean storm of 1697 and the storm described by Daniel Defoe which passed across southern England in December 1703 seem to have been of a severity unmatched in the records from other times except by those mentioned above between 1212 and 1362).
Defoe traveled across England and sought input on the nature and intensity of the storm, the loss of lives and extent of the damage. He published his findings (Figure 8).
The particular cold spell that pushed the ZEB and Polar Front further toward the Equator at that time caused considerable difficulties. In 1695 the Reverend John Shower published a sermon titled, “Winter meditations: or, a Sermon concerning Frost, and Snow, and Winds, &c (sic).” It culminated in the exceptionally cold year of 1709. The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society reported,
People across Europe awoke on 6 January 1709 to find the temperature had plummeted. A three-week freeze was followed by a brief thaw – and then the mercury plunged again and stayed there. From Scandinavia in the north to Italy in the south, and from Russia in the east to the west coast of France, everything turned to ice. The sea froze. Lakes and rivers froze, and the soil froze to a depth of a metre or more. Livestock died from cold in their barns, chicken’s combs froze and fell off, trees exploded and travellers froze to death on the roads. It was the coldest winter in 500 years.
You need lesser myths to support a big myth. Such is the history of the global warming deception. In science, as Einstein said,
No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment completely wrong.
The problem is when you are dealing with myths it is the opposite.
No amount of experimentation can ever prove me wrong; a single experiment completely right.
The fact that storms increase with global cooling will appear to support the myth that they are due to warming. Sadly, you only need one apparently substantiated myth to keep the entire mythology alive.