NASA climate modeling suggests Venus may have been habitable

From NASA Goddard and the “runaway greenhouse” department:

Venus may have had a shallow liquid-water ocean and habitable surface temperatures for up to 2 billion years of its early history, according to computer modeling of the planet’s ancient climate by scientists at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York.

Observations suggest Venus may have had water oceans in its distant past. A land-ocean pattern like that above was used in a climate model to show how storm clouds could have shielded ancient Venus from strong sunlight and made the planet habitable. CREDIT NASA

Observations suggest Venus may have had water oceans in its distant past. A land-ocean pattern like that above was used in a climate model to show how storm clouds could have shielded ancient Venus from strong sunlight and made the planet habitable. CREDIT NASA

The findings, published this week in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, were obtained with a model similar to the type used to predict future climate change on Earth.

“Many of the same tools we use to model climate change on Earth can be adapted to study climates on other planets, both past and present,” said Michael Way, a researcher at GISS and the paper’s lead author. “These results show ancient Venus may have been a very different place than it is today.”

Venus today is a hellish world. It has a crushing carbon dioxide atmosphere 90 times as thick as Earth’s. There is almost no water vapor. Temperatures reach 864 degrees Fahrenheit (462 degrees Celsius) at its surface.

Scientists long have theorized that Venus formed out of ingredients similar to Earth’s, but followed a different evolutionary path. Measurements by NASA’s Pioneer mission to Venus in the 1980s first suggested Venus originally may have had an ocean. However, Venus is closer to the sun than Earth and receives far more sunlight. As a result, the planet’s early ocean evaporated, water-vapor molecules were broken apart by ultraviolet radiation, and hydrogen escaped to space. With no water left on the surface, carbon dioxide built up in the atmosphere, leading to a so-called runaway greenhouse effect that created present conditions.

Previous studies have shown that how fast a planet spins on its axis affects whether it has a habitable climate. A day on Venus is 117 Earth days. Until recently, it was assumed that a thick atmosphere like that of modern Venus was required for the planet to have today’s slow rotation rate. However, newer research has shown that a thin atmosphere like that of modern Earth could have produced the same result. That means an ancient Venus with an Earth-like atmosphere could have had the same rotation rate it has today.

Another factor that impacts a planet’s climate is topography. The GISS team postulated ancient Venus had more dry land overall than Earth, especially in the tropics. That limits the amount of water evaporated from the oceans and, as a result, the greenhouse effect by water vapor. This type of surface appears ideal for making a planet habitable; there seems to have been enough water to support abundant life, with sufficient land to reduce the planet’s sensitivity to changes from incoming sunlight.

Way and his GISS colleagues simulated conditions of a hypothetical early Venus with an atmosphere similar to Earth’s, a day as long as Venus’ current day, and a shallow ocean consistent with early data from the Pioneer spacecraft. The researchers added information about Venus’ topography from radar measurements taken by NASA’s Magellan mission in the 1990s, and filled the lowlands with water, leaving the highlands exposed as Venusian continents. The study also factored in an ancient sun that was up to 30 percent dimmer. Even so, ancient Venus still received about 40 percent more sunlight than Earth does today.

“In the GISS model’s simulation, Venus’ slow spin exposes its dayside to the sun for almost two months at a time,” co-author and fellow GISS scientist Anthony Del Genio said. “This warms the surface and produces rain that creates a thick layer of clouds, which acts like an umbrella to shield the surface from much of the solar heating. The result is mean climate temperatures that are actually a few degrees cooler than Earth’s today.”

The research was done as part of NASA’s Planetary Science Astrobiology program through the Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) program, which seeks to accelerate the search for life on planets orbiting other stars, or exoplanets, by combining insights from the fields of astrophysics, planetary science, heliophysics, and Earth science. The findings have direct implications for future NASA missions, such as the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite and James Webb Space Telescope, which will try to detect possible habitable planets and characterize their atmospheres.

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219 thoughts on “NASA climate modeling suggests Venus may have been habitable

  1. So this article was written to test possible alternatives to Earth’s environment for other planets on the basis of: if, if,if, then, then, then. Any number of assumptions would change the results. Not science, merely speculation. I’ve read better sci-fi novels.

    • So have I. Of course, most serious science-fiction writers actually pay attention to the long-known laws of physics. (We dabble around the edges of physics speculation.)
      Of course, the entire exercise is meaningless – because their models are bad science fiction to start with.

      • I beg to differ. This is excellent science fiction if you use money made as a criterion. Let’s say there are ten of these scientists in this one group. Each has job for life and, including overhead, makes (or costs tax payers, depending on point of view) about $3,000,000 during career time. So, just this one group of scientists makes (or costs taxpayers) around $30,000,000 and publishes regularly in leading jpurnals. They generate more income than The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy author made.
        Disclosure: I am under impression that fewer and fewer people understand concept of sarcasm. So, above is sarcastic statement…

      • @Walt – C’mon now, they’re barely mid-listers. And even the likes of J. K. Rowling has to keep producing to keep the money rolling in. Nowhere near the Al Gore with one piece of fantasy that keeps the money rolling in (especially from the oil Sheiks).
        Sigh. Suppose I must note that this is also sarcasm…

      • Sometimes I think the purpose of these studies is to put me in my place, to accept that the Government will continues to squander the tax dollars they extract from my earnings, which I could use elsewhere and grow a useful economy. It’s a demonstration of how they can control us.
        Unfortunately there are so many more of these wasteful studies that this one alone probably does not make a big difference; meanwhile a few more “scientists” are being bribed with $$$ to support the agenda.
        How many of them are really needed to do essential science, not speculation, mostly with failed computer models that don’t even model the physics.

    • More likely this was written to say that “See, we told you so, Venus was once like earth but that Nasty CO2 came along and transformed it from an Earth like environment into a Hellish Runaway Greenhouse so If you don’t want Earth to follow that same path, you’d better clean up your Carbon Polluting ways…Oh …and send more money

  2. It occurs to me that the difference in the Sun’s gravity would probably account for planets which coalesced from the same primordial accretion disc but at different distances, having different constituents. Not unlike the way that uranium isotopes are separated, except that requires vastly higher g forces.

    • Planetary distillation, gravity pulls a lot of the rock and metal in, boils the low boiling point element, solar wind blows them out, until the freeze out, and you get the gas giants.
      But, there are all sorts of different solar system configurations, and I don’t know if any of them turn out as I describe, best I can remember, ours didn’t always look like it does now.

    • The “primordial accretion disc” is a theory, a conjecture that as time passes, looks more and more unlikely.

  3. If I make a model that is Earth like, should I be surprised when it produces Earth like data?

    • Surprised?, Nah… especially since “you” were started the entire study with that same outcome in mind.

    • I’m surprised I haven’t seen anyone mention this fatal flaw of this paper. Why would it have ever had a liquid ocean to begin with? Earth started off with mostly lava and cooled to form our current climate. Venus would have started off hotter due to its solar distance, so I see no reason why it could
      This is climate science at it’s worst. They made an assumption for an initial state, showed how it would result in the current state, and then declared this made the initial state assumption plausible. However, they made no real attempt to explain how the initial state could have formed in the first place.
      I literally did that very same experiment at age 8 with my copy of SimEarth.

      • And they throw a few billion years around like nothing, which to me has always been a sore point with all these sciences like weather, planet forming, geology etc. To think that the tectonic plate theory were laughed at less then a hundred years ago, the millions here and there thrown around by these “scientists” makes me shudder about what they are being taught and what they are trying to BS us with.

    • The Carbon came from the Suns Proto-stellar Nursery…the same place that Carbon came from on Earth and Mars and Titan

    • Early Venusians had developed into an industrial society and their burning of fossil fuels produced the “carbon”. The Venusians refused to reduce their “carbon” output and they overheated the planet, thus becoming extinct.

      • Actually, Venus is a virtual Garden Of Eden inhabited by legions of pulchritudinous and lusty lady folk.
        The “clouds” are just an optical illusion to keep out prying eyes…more or less like the opaque glass we put on bathroom windows.
        It seems hot because they have auto-lasers that zap any unwelcomed probes we send.
        You do not seriously think the UFOs come from another solar system…do you?
        (Well, OK, some do, by only the Zeta Reticuli ones.)

    • They wouldn’t say that. They’d say the atmosphere matters, which is true, of course. 9 MPa is probably gonna make the planet warmer than say 0.05 Mpa. You can call that GHE if you want.

      • Early Earth and early Venus had nearly identical atmospheres.
        So why did the Earth wind up as it did and Venus wind up as it did?
        The difference is that the Earth was far enough away from the sun for water to condense out of the atmosphere and stay out of the atmosphere. Once life formed, the CO2 was also taken out of the atmosphere.

      • This really relates to MarkW’s comment. Can I assume that God whispered in your ear that “in the beginning, Earth and Venus had nearly identical atmospheres.”? Conjecture is conjecture, belief is belief, but you state this as if it is a known fact. That’s the problem with science today. No, it is not a known fact, it is a belief based on interpreting evidence, and we really have no REAL evidence about what early Earth or Venus was truly like. We have conjecture and belief based on that.

      • Do not forget that Venus has no molten core resulting in no magnetic field to protect the Planet.

      • 1. Venus probably has a molten core given the surface is almost at molten rock temperatures.
        2. Venus doesn’t have a magnetic field because it is barely rotating. The earths core rotates backwards and the convection currents in the outer core creates the magnetic field.
        3. The estimates of the earth’s early atmosphere (Archean era) vary so much in atmospheric pressure and composition it looks like guessing. The estimates from actual evidence are wildly different from “GHG theory” driven estimates.
        4. If we don’t know what the earth’s atmosphere was like in the Archean era our knowledge of Venus atmosphere during that era will be even less informed.

      • There’s a relationship between a planet’s composition and how far it formed from the sun.
        Earth and Venus were separated by only a few million miles so their early atmospheres would have been nearly identical.

      • Let us not forget that the Earth had a large impactor late in it’s formation, which created the moon and perhaps did lots of other fortuitous stuff, like stripping away a lot of atmosphere.
        Yes, I know…just a wild guess. Except the part about “We have a large moon”.

      • Let us not forget that the Earth had a large impactor late in it’s formation
        The collision of a Mars sized impactor means that even if the earth and Venus were twins originally, now they barely rate “step-siblings”.

        • PA,
          Based its slow rate of retrograde rotation, it seems pretty clear to me that Venus was also affected by a large impact event some time in its past. My guess is that it started as a primordial gas giant that collided with Uranus (which also has a retrograde rotation) and got flung into the inner solar system where the lighter gases were stripped away by the solar wind, but CO2 was too heavy and much of it stayed behind. Meanwhile, Jupiter scavenged much of the lighter gases that were stripped away, while Earth intercepted significant amounts of water and N2.

      • My guess is that it started as a primordial gas giant that collided with Uranus (which also has a retrograde rotation) and got flung into the inner solar system where the lighter gases were stripped away by the solar wind, but CO2 was too heavy and much of it stayed behind.
        Don’t know how to respond to this. Hadn’t heard this theory before. It is possible that Venus is a Neptune like planet kicked into a near solar orbit.
        But this would render all the official Venus history as simple nonsense.
        Don’t know. We don’t know much about Neptune’s core and only a little more about Venus surface. Not sure how to determine if Venus was formed in place or moved from a higher orbit.

        • PA,
          “But this would render all the official Venus history as simple nonsense.”
          It’s all nothing but speculation anyway. Even the Moon arising from a collision of a Mars size planet with Earth.
          Consider that the ratio of U235 to U238 was much higher 4 billion years ago. Suppose that as gravity separated material in the Earth’s core, the U235 shell surrounding a denser U238 core went critical and resulted in an explosion with enough energy to blow out a side of the planet which re-condensed into the Moon as the remaining fractured surface of Earth left plate tectonics in its wake, a big hole that eventually filled up with ocean and brought heavier metals like gold up to the surface, which otherwise would have settled deep within the core and been out of reach.
          What makes this particular speculation interesting is that it’s more likely to have occurred elsewhere in the Universe than the very specific and unlikely collision thought to have resulted in the Moon and that its benefit for life is more ubiquitous then we think.

      • It’s all nothing but speculation anyway. Even the Moon arising from a collision of a Mars size planet with Earth.
        Um… Studies suggest the 0.5% of the crust came from asteroids. That is where your gold and heavy metals came from. The oldest rocks have a different composition than the current surface.
        The Mars sized impactor theory is just a theory. But it is as good a theory as any. Impactor speed and impactor size is pretty much speculation.

  4. ..The research was done as part of NASA’s Planetary Science Astrobiology program through the Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) program, which seeks to accelerate the search for life on planets orbiting other stars..
    The research was done as part of NASA’s Planetary Science Astrobiology program through the Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) program, which seeks to justify the astronomical but fraudulent world spend on climate change.
    There. Fixed that for you…

  5. Well if NASA scientists have adapted and used the same programs they use for modelling earth’s climate then it is fairly certain that their conclusions will be wrong.
    Not a lot more I can add to that.

    • I agree. This whole exercise gets especially iffy when they start talking about the cloud effects. With all the data we have collected about the Earth’s climate we cannot yet explain how it works, much less model it. So, how the hell do they expect to apply “Many of the same (unproven) tools we use to model climate change on Earth…” to another planet about which we have orders of magnitude less information and get any meaningful results. This thing sounds like it was dreamed up during a late night after dinner conversation and someone tried to decipher the scribbles on the bar napkins the next morning.

      • If Venus is too hot to have liquid oceans at what point was it cool enough to collect the oceans??? Now that the “oceans” have boiled off where did the water go? Is there an ocean of water vapor suspended in the atmosphere?

      • Per the report, the H2O was split in the atmosphere creating free H – H – O, the O later recombined with C for CO2 and the H was blown away in the strong Solar Wind leaving Venus Hot and Dry

      • Thanks Bryan, I have problems actually reading reports like this. Usually I just scan and then look at the comments to figure out the content.
        What temperature/pressure/reaction would it take to break the molecules into the constituent atoms short of something nuclear. Apparently steam can hold a remarkable amount of latent heat.

      • 4 billion years ago the sun would have been about 20% less bright compared to today. Whether this would have been cool enough for some of the water in it’s atmosphere to condense to liquid water is an open question.

      • Ever get the impression that there is way, way too much money available for grants based on political merit and perhaps not enough money available for grants based on scientific merit?

      • Taz,
        It is a process called Photodissociation or Photodecomposition where a chemical compound, like water, is broken down into it’s constituent atomic members by interactions with photons. The Higher the photonic energy state, the more effective it is at breaking the chemical bonds and UV has a much higher energy state than visible light.

      • Yes, you can’t get past that killer quote regarding using the models that don’t model our planet correctly on another planet that nobody has been to and trying to suggest there is any point to what they have done. I guess it fills their time, and burns up some taxpayers’ cash.

        • Venusian clouds differ from Earth clouds in one important respect, which is that while Earth clouds are part of the same thermodynamic system as the surface (oceans), Venusian clouds are a completely independent thermodynamic system. On Earth, the top of the oceans and the bits of land poking through are in DIRECT equilibrium with the Sun which heats the atmosphere from below as gravity provides a lapse rate that gets cooder as the pressure decreases with increasing altitude. On Venus, its the top of its cloud layers that are in DIRECT equilibrium with the Sun which heats the atmosphere from above where gravity provides a lapse rate that gets hotter as the pressure increases with decreasing latitude.

  6. Seems like they’re making a case for:
    “See what happened to Venus? If you don’t give us more money to run more models it’ll happen here and kill you and your little dog too!”
    Funny how their little study fits in so well with the policy-based “science” of today.

    • Well, Rick, it seems to me the situation described; ““This warms the surface and produces rain that creates a thick layer of clouds, which acts like an umbrella to shield the surface from much of the solar heating. The result is mean climate temperatures that are actually a few degrees cooler than Earth’s today”, speaks to the potential of water to act in a temperature limiting fashion, which is what I and it seems many others around here are ultimately arguing is most likely going on here on Earth.

    • It would seem like that if you were looking at it entirely through a certain prism. What does it seems they are conspiring to get you with when it comes to the research on Mars?

  7. My instincts tell me that humans first existed on Venus, built massive power plants and vehicles that consumed fossil fuel, inundating the atmosphere with CO2, until the planet reached the point of being uninhabitable so we migrated to Earth.
    Seems just as plausible as what their models are showing…

    • I would not put it past the CAGW alarmists to intentionally make that exact allusion. We will see Hollywood sci-fi action movies built on that exact premise, to further brain wash the incurious public. .. humanity, was originally on Mars…they screwed it up there, then they migrated to Venus, where they consumed all the resources and drove it to the boiling point…Now they are on earth, our last hope…People will believe it.

      • Along that line of sci-fi, Earth’s moon was once habitable, until the above mentioned people settled there, built a nuclear power station, and the atmosphere was blown off when the power plant exploded. You can still see the blast marks. 😉

    • Now, now, Mike, if you remember Dan Dare, Pilot of the Future, you know perfectly well that the dastardly Mekon on his flying saucer and the Treens were the inhabitants of Venus.
      Well, they were in the early 1950s.

      • The Treens were the inhabitants of North Venus. South of the Flame Belt, the Therons were the inhabitants. The Treens also raided Atlantis and took Atlanteans back to Venus as slaves, so the descendants of the Atlanteans were also inhabitants of North Venus.

  8. So, if the day time recieves two months of Sun, and shielded by clouds, what about the two months on the darks side. Frozen hell? Best keep on the move.

  9. “In the GISS model’s simulation, Venus’ slow spin exposes its dayside to the sun for almost two months at a time,” co-author and fellow GISS scientist Anthony Del Genio said. “This warms the surface and produces rain that creates a thick layer of clouds, which acts like an umbrella to shield the surface from much of the solar heating. The result is mean climate temperatures that are actually a few degrees cooler than Earth’s today.”

    Well that sounds like a good description of why our tropical climate is so stable and thus stabilises the rest of the Earth.
    At least it would do if they had not got the whole storey backwards: warming causes rain causes cloud that cuts incoming solar.
    For chrisake, rain causes cloud ? What are they on? Even a five year old realises that rain does not cause cloud.

    • So if their Venus model shows neg. cloud feedbacks stabilise the climate maybe they need to retune the parameters they use on the Earth model.

    • What is more interesting is that since CO2 by itself cannot be the source of cloud cover, then what is? Apparently solid sulfur dioxide (because of the pressure) and sulfuric acid droplets (supposedly formed with the miniscule amount of water vapor at 0.0002 present).

    • Here in SW AZ, when we get a morning rainfall, much of the new surface water evaporates quickly and rises and forms low level stratus-like clouds that hug the wet mountainsides. The rain water moisture came in from the Gulf of Mexico, Pacific, and Sea of Cortez by long range aircurrent transport. But the new low level clouds are formed as a fraction of it evaporates from the surface in the morning sunlight.
      So in that way, rainfall overland does form clouds.

      • ” Greg
        August 12, 2016 at 12:14 pm
        bread causes flour, which in turn causes wheat to grow. Bunch of friggin geniuses.

        Bread is bread it doesn’t cause anything. Wording like “rain makes clouds” is NatGeo language, for couch potatoes 😀

  10. Has anything about Prof Salby’s recent talk at University College London been posted here?. Just asking.

  11. “leading to a so-called runaway greenhouse effect that created present conditions.”
    Steve Goddard shows nicely in the following wattsup article that the high temps were actually caused by high atmospheric pressures, not CO2 warming; although I suppose that it is still possible that the early high warming rates may have been caused by water vapor (as per Goddard’s article). Looks like NASA GISS is once again hyperventilating on CO2 and as a result put garbage in their computer codes.
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/05/06/hyperventilating-on-venus/

    • Well actually he does not explain how this works at all. He just states it.
      Pressure cannot increase temperature since it does not provide any energy input. The heating / cooling of the lapse rate comes from gravitational potential energy not pressure.
      As a parcel of air descends, it loses gravitational potential energy. This is the source of source of the increased thermal energy. Pressure increase is also a SYMPTOM or effect of the increased molecular agitation which characterised as thermal energy.
      If you compress a gas manually, it’s temperature will rise. But it is the work done in compressing the gas which is the cause of the increase in temperature. The energy does not come from the pressure.
      As with all such questions you need to search the source of energy which is causing the changes, not observe two symptomatic results and imply a false causational relationship between them. An increase in pressure require work be done ie energy input, it can not be a source of energy.
      Steve Goddard may be competent in basic meteorology but he sadly has little grasp of basic physics.

      • “Steve Goddard may be competent in basic meteorology but he sadly has little grasp of basic physics.”
        So I deduce from your comment that you probably have a PHD, or some such, in physics. Goddard has degrees in Geology & Electrical Engineering which require studies in physics related courses. Isn’t it a bit arrogant to be so picky about him not stating the actual cause of the pressure/temperature increase as I automatically knew the cause and therefore assumed that anyone else able to keep up with the material provided did also. However, feel proud that you have now thoroughly “educated” everyone in the matter.

      • Pressure is the way we measure gravitational energy of position (potential energy). Entropy acts to reduce this potential energy. The effect is to increase the surface temperature and pressure just as surely as if we had squeezed it mechanically with a compressor.
        There is no meaningful distinction here.

      • Greg you better not let Joel Shore hear you say such things. He has stated that no work is done by the atmosphere.

      • An increase in pressure require work be done ie energy input, it can not be a source of energy.

        Exactly so. If Venus were at the edge of the solar system, its surface temperature would be very low.
        The temperature at the planet’s surface is roughly determined by the adiabatic lapse rate. If the ambient lapse rate exceeds the adiabatic lapse rate, you get convection and heat is removed from the surface. A calculation based on the adiabatic lapse rate gives a pretty good approximation of the temperature at the surface of Venus. Venus envy Convection and adiabatic expansion

      • Greg,
        You are misrepresenting what Steven/Tony said. The high surface temperature is a function of the high atmospheric surface pressure but Steven/Tony is in no way claiming that the high surface pressure is “generating” heat from the force of gravity. Basically, the characteristic emissions altitude occurs at about the 1/10 bar altitude and the lapse rate dictates the temperature profile from that altitude down to the surface. With the extremely dense Venusian atmosphere, it is a long way from the 1/10 bar altitude to the surface, hence the high surface temperature.

      • Pressure does in fact relate to temperature according to Boyles gas law. PV=nRT. T=PV/nR. So if P increase so does T. Just saying. Temperature is not energy. You need temperature and mass.

      • @BFL
        Steve Goddard’s post here was so brief as to be me useless in making any point. I’ve looked at his site in the past and it is equally vague. If someone has a “new” explanation that it supposed to turn everything done on AGW over the last half century on it’s head, they had better come up with a pretty clear and thorough explanation of what they thing they have found.
        I was interested enough to go over and read his sight and it was a waste of time. Loads of hand waving without ever really saying what he meant and no equations. Very unscientific.
        Since you claim it is obvious to you maybe you could fill us all in. Apparently communication is not one of Steve’s strong suits.
        Motl makes a much better and more scientific explanation in the link provided by someone above. This at least allows following the story and seeing where it goes wrong. ie VALIDATION or REFUTATION which is the basis of science.
        Robert A.

        With the extremely dense Venusian atmosphere, it is a long way from the 1/10 bar altitude to the surface, hence the high surface temperature

        With 92bar there is a lot more matter in the vesuvian atmosphere than there is in ours. With a similar lapse rate ( thanks to Motl for explaining the unstated assumptions of Steve Goddard and the inaccuracies this induces. ) this means more difference between where lapse rate starts and ground level.
        However, it is still not the lapse rate or the pressure which can determine what the surface temperature is. Lapse rate gives the temperature change between the top and bottom of the convective cycle, assuming that there is one.
        As someone pointed out, if you stick Venus out near the orbit of Pluto is will be lot colder at the surface. Lapse rate neither creates heat nor maintains surface temperature, neither on Venus nor on Earth.
        Steve Goddard is presenting this as a “new theory” yet there is nothing stated clearly enough to be refutable.

      • Mario : “So if P increase so does T”
        Sure, so then you need to look at the source of energy which is increasing both temp and pressure. You are assuming V is constant, which of course it is not.
        Lapse rate does not explain the temperature at the surface, it only explains temperature difference under convective forced cycling of the atmosphere. Without convection the lapse rate does not provide a means to maintain the temperature difference that would otherwise be eroded by both conduction and radiative cooling as the warmer surface gases try to equilibrate with the colder higher altitudes.
        Conclusion: the temp at the surface is neither caused nor explained by lapse rate. Lapse rate is more correctly called adiabatic lapse rate, ie. there is no change in energy or entropy. To understand the temperature of a planet we need to look at the dynamics of its energy budget, not non energy changing lapse rates.

      • commieBob writes-
        “If Venus were at the edge of the solar system, its surface temperature would be very low.”
        However, Jupiter receives much less solar input (50 W/m^2) than Venus (2586 W/m^2) or Earth (1353 W/m^2).
        Yet, it is estimated to have a temperature of 2000 K at the liquid hydrogen boundary, 5000 K at the liquid metallic hydrogen boundary, and 20,000 K at the rocky surface of the core.

      • Greg,you’ve got that right. I remember reading an article several years ago speculating that earth had a 10 or 20% denser atmosphere in the past, which helped to counterbalance a fainter sun. I was thinking like Steve Goddard, and plugged in the PV =mrT equation, and realized that I could get a P of 1.1 or 1.2, , a T of 1, but V remained undetermined, which left the problem unsolvable.

      • Greg,
        I did not say that the basic energy balance would not apply to the atmospheric system. Obviously a lower energy input would result in lower temperatures. I just said that Steven/Tony was not claiming that the heating of the lower atmosphere was a result of static gravitational compression (as do some of the people that believe there is no “greenhouse effect”) as you seem to imply. I object to your assertion that Steven/Tony has “little grasp of physics”. Steven/Tony’s explanation is pretty much in line with the postings of Roy Spencer on the same subject. Maybe you should reread Steven’s post as it did not claim static gravitational compression was generating a temperature rise.

      • Greg says: August 12, 2016 at 1:20 pm
        … Lapse rate does not explain the temperature at the surface, it only explains temperature difference under convective forced cycling of the atmosphere.

        Yes, it operates as a kind of brake (ie. negative feedback) on the maximum surface temperature. When the ambient lapse rate exceeds the adiabatic lapse rate, you get convection and the planet begins to lose heat a lot more efficiently.

        chris y says: August 12, 2016 at 3:02 pm
        … Jupiter receives much less solar input … than Venus … or Earth …
        Yet, it is estimated to have a temperature of 2000 K at the liquid hydrogen boundary, 5000 K at the liquid metallic hydrogen boundary, and 20,000 K at the rocky surface of the core.

        Jupiter is a heat source; it radiates 1.6 times a much energy as it receives from the Sun. link

  12. “Venus may have had a shallow liquid-water ocean and habitable surface temperatures for up to 2 billion years of its early history, according to computer modeling of the planet’s ancient climate by scientists at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) in New York.”
    We all know what happened next — as soon as the population rose to an SUV worshiping culture, the planet was doomed.

  13. Since Al Gore invented the internet, he should be the first visitor to Venus. It’s closer than Mars and holds a better CO2 propaganda story. If he backs out at the last minute he can at least pocket the collection plate and media exposure.

  14. So are they saying that at a pressure of 90 atmospheres, and temperature hot enough to melt lead, life could have existed? Or are they saying that the atmospheric pressure on Venus was left millions of years in the past? Basic physics tells me that the temperature is a consequence of the atmospheric pressure, not the co2.

  15. Venus’ rotation rate leads to a 117 day long sunshine period.
    The rate at which the Sun’s energy would accumulate on the early Venus meant that it was completely baked out on the very first day that the crust became solid.
    Think of it this way. One day the surface is molten. The next day it cools and becomes solid and within that first day, the Sun’s energy raises the temperature of anything solid to close to 500C.
    Earth warms up by 10C in the 10 hours that the Sun is warming it up. On Venus, this period is 2,340 hours long. Applying the Stefan Boltzmann equations to the expected energy accumulation rate in joules/second results in – you guessed it – a surface temperature of 470C.
    Every volatile is baked out, turned into a gas and becomes a very thick heat retaining atmosphere that generates fierce winds, spreading the heat around to the dark-side.
    All this happened on the very first day.
    In other words, there never was an ocean or liquid water.

    • A Venutian “day” is 117 Earth days. That about 58 Earth days of sunlight, 58 Earth days worth of darkness.

      • Rotational period is 253 days. You need to check your premise. It’s not hard. 117 days of continuous sunshine is approximately correct.
        “It has the longest rotation period (243 days) of any planet in the Solar System and rotates in the opposite direction to most other planets.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venus

      • BioBob,
        From the NASA/GISS release above,
        “In the GISS model’s simulation, Venus’ slow spin exposes its dayside to the sun for almost two months at a time,” co-author and fellow GISS scientist Anthony Del Genio said.”
        Now GISS may be in the tank for the CAGW crusades,but they are not stupid about how Venus rotates on its axis or how long a surface observer would have “daylight.”
        2 human months is about 58 Earth days.

        • Joelobryan,
          Another tid-bit of info is that there’s no difference in surface temperature between the daytime side of the planet and the night time side. What does this say about the direct effect solar energy has on the Venusian surface?
          The Venusian surface has more in common with the bottom of Earth’s oceans than with the top of its oceans and the bits of land that poke through. At the Earth’s equator, the bottom of the ocean is close to 0C and is also completely unaffected by diurnal or seasonal variability and is a consequence only of the gravitationally induced ‘lapse rate’ of the H2O in the ocean above. The mass of the Venusian atmosphere is the same order of magnitude as the mass of Earth’s oceans, moreover; at surface temperatures and pressures, the Venusian CO2 atmosphere is a supercritical fluid which acts more like a liquid than a gas.
          The ‘surface’ of Venus that corresponds to the ‘surface’ of Earth is high up in its atmosphere that is both in equilibrium with the Sun and within a pressure and temperature range where water can exist as a liquid, solid and gas. Note that this is the top of the Venusian CO2 ocean and the GHG effect does operate at between that altitude and space as the temperature of the cloud tops reaches a steady state equilibrium with the incident solar power. The relationship of the temperature of this surface in equilibrium with the Sun with the temperature of the solid surface below is set by a gravitationally induced lapse rate dependent on the pressure/density/temperature profile of the CO2 in its ocean above.

    • The climate model study assumed the thick clouds would reflect enough solar radiation so that temperatures would not get that high on early Venus.
      But they never really calculated how a 117 day long solar day would accumulate.
      With 80% Albedo and solar TSI at 2643 W/m2 – Venus is still going to get 530 W/m2 of sunshine for 700 hours straight during its daytime.
      That is the same solar radiation that Minneapolis at 45N gets for 4 hours on June 21 the equinox.
      http://www.physicalgeography.net/fundamentals/images/dailynetrad.gif
      How much does Minneapolis warm up from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm on June 21 each year – about 7C or the accumulated surface radiation rises from 400 W/m2 to 440 W/m2 or 10 W/m2 per hour.
      Now lets extend that 4 hours to 700 hours like on Venus.
      The surface radiation increases from 400 W/m2 to 7410 W/m2 (yes, you read that right) and the surface temperature increases from 16C to 328C.
      Liquid water is evaporated right out before the middle of the very first day even with 80% Albedo !!!
      These climate scientists did NOT do the simple calculations that are required to answer the simple question.

    • Don’t forget that the early Earth had a rotational speed of just over 4 hours. This has lengthened to 24 hours as the moon has receded. The Earth day is gradually getting longer and longer.
      So early Earth might have had say 2.5 hours of sunshine, 2.5 hours of night, 2.5 hours of sunshine etc.
      That said, it is rather different to 117 hours of sunshine.
      But do we know what rotational speed early Venus had?

  16. Until recently, it was assumed that a thick atmosphere like that of modern Venus was required for the planet to have today’s slow rotation rate. However, newer research has shown that a thin atmosphere like that of modern Earth could have produced the [slow rotation rate].

    WHAT? Who assumed that? The Earth’s current rotation rate is likely a remnant of the collision with a large proto-planet in our same orbit that caused the Earth’s moon to form. Venus never had the good luck of such a collision. I assume that it’s length of day is related to it’s less catastrophic formation, being bombarded more uniformly by it’s constituent parts.

    • And the rotation of Mars has to do with Phobos and Deimos. As they are smaller than the Moon,a Martian day must be longer. By about 40 minutes. And it is! Theory proven.

    • Oh, my – must be the allergies and lack of sleep from same, I totally missed that one.
      I have never seen any such “assumption” made about even a correlation between atmospheric thickness and rotation rate by a real planetologist. Take a look at Jupiter.
      Goddard used to be a decent institution. Now I think they just have people come in to write their papers; people that stayed at a Holiday Inn last night…
      Getting low on /sarc tags, here, people. The just in time inventory system is being overwhelmed today.

    • The Earth’s current rotation rate is likely a remnant of the collision with a large proto-planet in our same orbit that caused the Earth’s moon to form

      Correct.
      After that collision the moon had an orbit very close to the Earth, perhaps around 20,000 miles, the effect of which was that the Earth had a rotational speed of just over 4 hours.
      Over time the moon has receded and as this has taken place, the Earth’s rotational speed has decreased such that today it rotates once every 24 hours.
      The length of day today is very different to that of the past in the early period following the formation of the planet.

    • Venus was just fine when The 3 Stooges visited in “Have Rocket, Will Travel”. Wonder what happened…

  17. There seems to be consensus that Venus is lifeless. Why don’t we seed it with some airborne extremophiles to eat all that carbon?

      • I know but I am asking why? We easily have the technology to get there. We could probably tweak some microbes to survive there. Why aren’t we doing it? Better to spend money to that end than fiddling global temps.

      • The problem is, how do we prevent the C from recombining with the O once the little bugs have separated them? Venus’s atmosphere is sufficiently hot to cause combustion should the two elements come back into contact with each other.

    • There is no known life on earth that can survive the 870+F temps at the surface of Venus. 252 F is the highest known thermophile bacterial life in the oceans.
      In other words, the “extremophiles” would be toast.

      • The notion is that they are airborne, BioBob. Fix carbon from the air, then as some of them are convected down at some point, they are toast – and settle to the surface as solid carbon.
        Still wouldn’t work of course. First objection is that almost all thermophiles are sulfur lovers. That might reduce the acid clouds. But the second objection is the killer. The only efficient natural carbon fixing mechanism we know of is chlorophyll. Not much magnesium floating around in the atmosphere of any planet. (Yes, only one atom of a very complex molecule – but no magnesium atom, no carbon-fixing.) Your colony of very expensive to develop bacteria would die very quickly of trace element resource depletion.

    • Yep, eyes are having problems. I was about to chide you for a basic scientific mistake there, when I read that as “extremists.” The likes of Gore and company are way too fat (on the rich food purchased with our money) to float.

  18. If anything proves the absolute incompetence of GISS , this is it .
    It is simply not possible by an order of magnitude for any material spectrum to explain Venus’s surface temperature , 225% that of a gray body in its orbit much less one with a reflectivity with respect to the solar spectrum of around 0.9 .
    This is the simplest case to demand Show us the Equations because no enabling equations exist .
    For that matter , where’s a link to the paper ? None is presented .

  19. It is difficult to see how a thick atmosphere has much to do with a planet’s rotational speed.
    Earth rotates the way it does because of the moon’s tidal influence.
    Observing Mars and Venus it seems clear that a planet, to be habitable, needs a relatively strong magnetic field, a reasonable period of rotation, a substantial atmosphere, and plate tectonics.
    Venus and Mars miss these factors:
    Mars, no plate tectonics, a thin atmosphere and negligible magnetic field.
    Venus, no plate tectonics (instead a strange planet-wide subduction process that renews the crust over tens of millions of years by planet wide melts)
    A terribly slow rotational period that will eventually have one side facing the sun and the other into space.
    An over abundance of atmosphere
    An apparently very weak magnetic field.

  20. Has NASA just declared that the cause of Venus’s current climate was not a run away greenhouse affect?

    • No, that happened only after the nasty CO2 appeared. This was purportedly because the sun dissociated the Hydrogen, and with only 80% of the earth’s mass, it all escaped to space. (Only Hydrogen and Helium can escape the earth)
      You see, water is the GOOD greenhouse gas, and CO2 is the bad.

      • Magnetic fields have an influence on ions escaping to space, can accelerate them. It’s not only mass that matters.

        • True. Nevertheless, the earth’s magnet field and mass, in whatever combination, seem to allow only Hydrogen and Helium to escape. Helium has a complete valence shell and is not ionic (nor covalent). It seems to be able to escape.
          We do not understand the magnetic field of the earth, much less that of Venus.

  21. Irrespective of whether it is good or bad sci-fi, it is irrelevant speculation based on models tuned to give a specific result…this is just speculation about what might have been when the sun was new based on numerical methods chosen by humans (ugly bags of mostly water)

  22. “Many of the same tools we use to model climate change on Earth can be adapted to” ….
    prove Elvis still lives, that Al Gore is really the tooth fairy and that windmills can be used to move Earth to a safer orbit when CO2 rises to levels at which eggs can be fried on Greenland ice pack at midday.

  23. How well do we know surface temperatures of Venus? How many measurements have been made? What is an average day temperature, and an average night temperature? At equator, and near poles?

  24. Earth will experience an opposite path. We will end up like Mars and long before the sun evolves to be too hot. As volcanism slows and then stops on Earth, CO2 in the atmosphere will decline. Plants will eventually decline, and finally fail as will the animals that depend on the plants. Over time Earth will also lose its water vapor. As subduction slows and then stops, the water cycle in the mantle will stop. The magnetic field will weaken and water vapor will be stripped by the solar wind. At some point we end up looking much more like Mars than like Venus. Maybe at some point it gets cold enough for large bodies of water to freeze over completely and these will get covered by dust and sand locking even more water out of the atmospheric cycle. Ways to extend the life of our atmosphere? Maybe bury nuclear waste in subduction zones, maybe unlocking the CO2 in limestone, I don’t know. There’s probably much less than 1 billion years left of a habitable atmosphere, I figure closer to about 300 million years.

  25. Hansen told us some years ago that, according to his model, if our planet contiued the way it is going, the oceans would boil and we would arrive at Venus-like conditions. Thus it seems reasonable that if we start with Venus and run the same model backwards, we should eventually arrive at Earth-like conditions.

  26. The findings, published this week in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, were obtained with a model similar to the type used to predict future climate change on Earth.

    And how are those models of Earth’s climate working out for us? (H.R. recalls recent posts by Mr. Tisdale and Christopher Monckton of Brenchley). Why oh why would anyone believe the CHIMP models are suitable for modeling the climate of Venus?

    • Who in their right mind thinks they know enough about the variables of Venus to model anything even closely resembling how things work on Venus. Waste of time money and irrelevant, pointless.
      The only possible use this would have is trying to reanimate the “earth could end up like Venus because of CO2” claims, each of which has been thoroughly invalidated.

  27. Is this meant to be a joke?
    How could they possible model the configuration of continents and ocean?
    What about the composition and pressure of the atmosphere?
    Even if by some fluke they guessed these correctly, because GCMs are hopelessly bad are predicting the climate here on earth, why would they be any better on venus?
    It is hard to believe that taxpayers money is used to finance this utter nonsense.

  28. In light of Peter Franks presentation on modeling uncertainties over at Heartland I’d say their projections don’t even qualify as unreliable speculation. More in the realm of “maybe possible”.

    • DMA,
      More like, “IF gravity becomes a repellent force, then it may be possible their modeling exercise of Venus is correct.”
      Upon further thought, it occurred to me that the IPCC problem is that they are using models suitable to Venus’ climate to model Earth’s climate. Maybe those 100+ models are correct… for Venus.

  29. Men are from Mars, except for James Hansen. He is a closet Venusian who boils salted water with which to cook.

  30. It is clear this is a scenario to boost a sagging GHG armageddon theory here on earth. They reach into every nook and cranny as the truth on CAGW theory looms. I remember on geological parties over 50yrs ago in northern Canada, when you scooped a tea pail of bog water to make tea at lunch, the aquatic bugs would seek out the coolest parts of the heating tea water and you could see them outlining the convection cells until they expired. I like this analogy.
    Interesting how truth can slip out when they get away from earth:
    “This warms the surface and produces rain that creates a thick layer of clouds, which acts like an umbrella to shield the surface from much of the solar heating. The result is mean climate temperatures that are actually a few degrees cooler than Earth’s today.”
    So they know that clouds from evaporation of ocean water is a negative feedback and they have been lying about it in the case of the earth’s climate. I’m placing a pauper’s bet that when the paper comes out, they will have nixed this theory damning (although obvious) statement.

  31. Since Venus is half the distance from the sun as compared to earth itsTSI will be twice as intense, about 2,400 W/m^2 as compared to 1,368 W/m^2. If the earth were transported to Venus’ orbit, all else being equal, the average surface temperature would increase from about 60 F to about 120 F. That would not be habitable for earth’s current bio forms.

    • It’s more like 2/3ths the distance (67m vs 93m).
      My back of the envelope calculations puts the Sun’s forcing 2.6 times that of Earth (if you consider Venus’ profile to the Earth’s profile).

      • Numbers, numbers, number.!?
        Sun Radius…………….696,000…………km
        Sun Spherical Area…6.087E+12…….km^2
        Luminosity…………….3.847E+26……..W
        Power flux…………….6.320E+07……W/m^2
        S-B σ……………………..5.670E-08……W/m^2 – K^4
        Surface Temp……………5,778.0………..K
        Earth
        Orbital radius……….1.496E+08……….km
        Area at Orbit………..2.812E+17……….km^2
        Power Flux……………….1,368.0……..W/m^2
        Venus
        Orbital radius………1.082E+08………..km….……72.3% of earth
        Orbital Area………..1.471E+17………..km^2
        Power Flux……………..2,614.6……….W/m^2….191.1% of earth
        Move earth to Venus’ orbit w/ 191% power flux: Q = U * A * dT
        Earth OLR power flux……240.0……W/m^2
        Surface temperature…….288.0 K
        Top of Troposphere…………15……km
        Lapse rate……………………….9.8….C/km
        Top of Troposphere T….141.0……K
        dT 288 – 141..…………..147.0…..C
        OLR / A = U * dT
        240/147 = U………………..1.633 W/m^2 * m^2 * dK
        At Venus TMI….240*191%………….458.7…..W/m^2
        dT at 1.633 U..…………….280.98…..C
        288 + dT = predicted surface temperature…..568.98…..K
        No habitation there, no water, either.
        Questions?

      • Nicholas the power flux at earth is between 1360 to 1362 w/m^2. That’s been since at least 2001. Overestamiting numbers doesn’t lend to scientific certainty.

      • rishrac
        “Nicholas the power flux at earth is between 1360 to 1362 w/m^2. That’s been since at least 2001. Overestamiting numbers doesn’t lend to scientific certainty.”
        What I presented is a rock solid math calculation using numbers subject to significant uncertainties.
        We’re talking about 0.6%. Nothing in the real world is measured to four significant figures with any solid confidence. Posted solar temps range from 5,750 K to 6,000 K. What do you suppose the uncertainties are on diameters? luminosity?
        Plus 1,368 W/m^2 is the power flux on a spherical surface at the diameter of the orbit which for all intents is a flat surface, radiation arrives perpendicular to the earth’s cross sectional area. A sphere of r has four times the area as a disc of r. Divide 1,368 by 4 = 342 W/m^2 which is the ISR shown on Trenberth et al. power flux balance diagrams. 340 is sometimes shown – 340 * 4 = 1,340.
        Trenberth et al 2011jcli24 Figure 10 shows data for 8 balances, 7 of them show atmospheric cooling. All of them have significant uncertainties.
        One popular GHE theory power flux balance (“Atmospheric Moisture…. Trenberth et. al. 2011 Figure 10) has a spontaneous perpetual loop (333 W/m^2) flowing from cold to hot violating three fundamental thermodynamic laws. (1. Spontaneous energy out of nowhere, 2. perpetual loop w/o work, 3. cold to hot w/o work, 4. doesn’t matter because what’s in the system stays in the system) Physics must be optional for “climate” science. What really counts is the net W/m^2 balance at ToA which 7 out of 8 re-analyses included in the above cited paper concluded the atmosphere was cooling, not warming (+/- 12.3 W/m^2). Of course Dr. Trenberth says they are wrong because their cooling results are not confirmed by his predicted warming, which hasn’t happened for twenty years. (“All of the net TOA imbalances are not tenable and all except CFSR imply a cooling of the planet that clearly has not occurred.”)
        Refer to Trenberth’s Figure 10 (Trenberth et al 2011jcli24).
        342 W/m^2 enters the ToA (100 km). About 100 W/m^2 are reflected by the albedo leaving about 242 to be absorbed by the atmosphere, 80, and surface, 160. Leaving the surface are 17 – convection, 80 – evapo, 63 LWIR.
        All of the numbers are now accounted for, there is no source for the net, circulating 333. The net 333 is the result of counting the same energy two different ways, a basic bookkeeping error. Entering 288 K in S-B to get 390 W/m^2 is double counting the same energy.
        Downwelling
        The bulk of the atmosphere’s mass is contained in the troposphere (topping out at 15 km). The lapse rate of 9.8 C/km means that the tropospheric temperature ranges from 288 K to 126 K. The temperature at 30,000 feet or 9 km is about -40 C or 233 K. Because of their low density the emissivity of gases is low, for CO2 0.10 at 1 atm to .01 at .001 atm (Lallemant et.al. 1996, Fig 3), “back” radiating in ALL directions, say 25% back to surface.
        For example: -40 C / 233 K and average ε = .05 = S-B W/m^2 of 8.36 * .25 “back” wash = 2.09 W/m^2. NOT 333. Wow, same number that IPCC gets!
        So the upwelling/downwelling/”back” radiation numbers simply don’t work.

  32. “The GISS team postulated ancient Venus had more dry land overall than Earth, especially in the tropics.”

    Pulled that assumption out of their butt they did. Probably other scenarios of land configurations didn’t yield them their preconceived results.

  33. We have no idea of Venus’ geological history, none, nada, nil. Such musings are pointless.
    Venus has much in common with a comet and a planet.

    • ‘Venus has much in common with a comet and a planet’. That’s interesting, Mark – Helsinki. Could you tell us more?

  34. If I may, by inverse square law that is entirely twaddle and bullshit. 90% of venus’s surface temperature is from direct heat input, not some kind of insulative re-radiation. It is a saturated environment.

  35. I’m surprised the models don’t show that Venus is habitable today, but won’t be once human settlers start using air conditioning.
    /snark

  36. A little bit off topic but relates to increasing CO2, models and weather/climate on earth.
    For the past decade+, we’ve been bombarded with studies telling us that increasing CO2 and the resulting climate change will have an increasing negative effect on crop yields…..based on assumptions and models.
    The USDA just released it’s August crop report 20 minutes ago. Yes, I know that it was the weather this year which made the biggest contribution to the 2016 record crops. Last years record crops were also caused by excellent growing season weather. However, it has been the IMPROVING weather over the past 4 decades…… that has been the most favorable since records have been kept that has been a massive positive. So despite this being just one year, these observations in the real world continue to follow the trend………which is in the complete opposite direction of models and projections from scientists who do studies that show negative consequences.
    The only reason this sort of junk agronomy/plant science can continue is that they never have to be accountable in the real world marketplace, where crops are grown, brought/sold and priced.
    Were they to apply their projections in the real world, they would have gone broke/lost their consulting jobs in the first year.
    http://www.usda.gov/nass/PUBS/TODAYRPT/crop0816.txt
    Released August 12, 2016, by the National Agricultural Statistics Service
    (NASS), Agricultural Statistics Board, United States Department of
    Agriculture (USDA).
    Corn Production Up 11 Percent from 2015(which was a record year)
    Soybean Production Up 3 Percent from 2015(a record year)
    Cotton Production Up 23 Percent from 2015
    Winter Wheat Production Up 2 Percent from July Forecast
    “Corn production is forecast at 15.2 billion bushels, up 11 percent from last
    year. Based on conditions as of August 1, yields are expected to average
    175.1 bushels per acre, up 6.7 bushels from 2015. If realized, this will be
    the highest yield and production on record for the United States. Area
    harvested for grain is forecast at 86.6 million acres, unchanged from the
    June forecast, but up 7 percent from 2015.
    Soybean production is forecast at a record 4.06 billion bushels, up 3 percent
    from last year. Based on August 1 conditions, yields are expected to average
    a record 48.9 bushels per acre, up 0.9 bushel from last year. Area for
    harvest in the United States is forecast at a record 83.0 million acres,
    unchanged from the June forecast but up 1 percent from 2015. Planted area for
    the Nation is estimated at a record 83.7 million acres, also unchanged from
    June.
    All cotton production is forecast at 15.9 million 480-pound bales, up
    23 percent from last year. Yield is expected to average 800 pounds per
    harvested acre, up 34 pounds from last year. Upland cotton production is
    forecast at 15.3 million 480-pound bales, up 23 percent from 2015. Pima
    cotton production is forecast at 565,000 bales, up 30 percent from last year.
    All wheat production, at 2.32 billion bushels, is up 3 percent from the
    July forecast and up 13 percent from 2015. Based on August 1 conditions, the
    United States yield is forecast at 52.6 bushels per acre, up 1.3 bushels from
    last month and up 9 bushels from last year.”
    All this hoopla about 2015 and 2016 being the hottest years eva. How about some relevant information like this(some people might consider food production important) about the realities of how its actually effecting life on this greening up planet.

  37. Pigs might have flown on Venus, if Venus ever had pigs (which they might have), and if pigs could fly (which they could, if they had wings, which they could).
    Further study is required of course.

      • BioBob,
        It is a well known fact that applying a low, slow heat, usually provided by hickory or perhaps apple wood charcoal, and suitable application of various natural seasonings ground plant products makes dissecting a pig (in the scientific search for pig wings) a much less onerous task.
        In the American South, this is a topic of extensive research by scientists, citizen scientists, and laymen alike.

  38. Co-author and fellow GISS scientist Anthony Del Genio said. “This warms the surface and produces rain that creates a thick layer of clouds, which acts like an umbrella to shield the surface from much of the solar heating. The result is mean climate temperatures that are actually a few degrees cooler than Earth’s today.”
    Is this the final proof that climate models get it wrong? Physics of clouds. extreme strong negative water vapor, rain and cloud feedback.

  39. “Venus may have had a shallow liquid-water ocean and habitable surface temperatures for up to 2 billion years of its early history”
    It MAY have had any number of things. Virtually any scenario that does not violate basic physics laws. I suppose if you throw in multiversus, then anything is possible. We don’t care about POSSIBLE, we care about PROBABLE and how that conclusion was arrived at. If you used computer models, your conclusion will subjected to intense scrutiny, since computer models are not real life. (Yes, I know you scientists are shocked, but computer models are not reality. Deal with it.)
    Do you ever wonder if all this social networking and constant use of cell phones, computer games, etc is designed to create a population that does believe reality is what is on a computer screen?

  40. Anyone here who doesn’t want to talk out of their ass about how this is “science fiction” or somehow ridiculous, here is a link to the preprint on Arxiv: https://arxiv.org/pdf/1608.00706v1.pdf .
    A lot of comments are asking snarky questions, most of which would easily be addressed by reading the paper. Skepticism is one thing, but the comments here have fallen over the edge to wilful ignorance.

    • Marcus Holm,
      I followed your link and and it included 9 ‘ifs’ as well as 6 ‘may have’ and 1 ‘may’, along with 5 ‘estimate(s, ed).’
      It is a simulation entirely based on assumptions of conditions a few billion years ago albeit informed by limited data which has only been recently acquired.
      Extreme skepticism of the results of the simulation is warranted.
      Thank you very much for the link. (Please note: that was a sincere thanks and not snark or sarcasm, Marcus.)

    • Where did they calculate what the daytime surface temperature gets to (even with the 80% Albedo assumption).
      Answer is: they DIDN’T.
      Its all global mean climate model simulations.
      By Noon, on the very first day of a 117 day long solar day, the surface tempeature at the equator rises to 601K (even with 80% Albedo). At 601K, there is no water and everything in the top 5 metres of the surface that can be baked into a gas is baked into gas and hellish Venus has begun. By Noon, on the very first day.

  41. I remember when NASA was all about space exploration. What the heck happened to this once proud and inspirational organization? Mewling progressivism. That’s what.

  42. Any kind of runaway GHG effect is impossible. Venus is the case of runaway clouds, not run away GHG’s. Besides, the feedback model that supports a run away GHG effect assumes a gain element (i.e. the atmosphere) with an implicit, infinite capacity power supply providing its output power, rather than consuming its input and feedback power to produce the output power. This is an underlying assumption of Bode’s control theory (along with the requirement for strict input/output linearity) both of which climate science conveniently ignores. These are 3 decade old errors that first appeared in Hansen’s 1984 paper on climate system feedback, were obfuscated by Schlesinger’s follow on paper, and have since been canonized by the IPCC.

  43. I suppose we shouldn’t be too hast in our criticism. I mean, they used the same, or similar tools that they use to model the climate here on Earth. And we all know how successful they’ve been with that endeavor.

  44. “There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.” – Mark Twain

  45. Alas, it’s only a matter how many variables are used, so perhaps you don’t even have to fudge the data ! It reminds me of Freeman Dyson’s narrative when he presented Fermi an equation and Fermi citated the great mathematician John von Neumann:” with four variables I can fit an Elephant and with five I can make him wiggle his trunk!”

  46. Hansen’s ocean-boiling model was ridiculous and my thought of running it backwards from a Venusian
    starting point was even more so. You were supposed to laugh.

  47. So in Venus climate models, clouds act to cool the planet, whereas on Earth, clouds must cause runaway warming. Nice try. Can’t have it both ways, or can you?

    • Mario Lento
      August 12, 2016 at 12:15 pm :
      Thankyou Mario for concisely stating the basis of the gravito- thermal effect above, as it follows the gas laws. Trolls like Greg can squirm all they like, but it destroys their case utterly. As demonstrated empirically on Venus and several other bodies. Even stars are formed thus, because 2-3K becomes millions under stellar gas pressure, initiating nuclear ignition.
      Simple, and as explained by Maxwell in his Theory of Heat as it applies to atmospheres. “Hockeyschtick Thursday, May 1, 2014
      Maxwell established that gravity & atmospheric mass create so-called greenhouse effect
      from a comment by climate scientist Pehr Bjornbom at the Stockholm Initiative, a Swedish climate science discussion site that is currently discussing the Hockey Schtick post Why Earth’s climate is self-regulating and independent of CO2, Dr. Bjornbom notes that in 1888 the famous physicist Maxwell wrote that gravity establishes the temperature gradient [adiabatic lapse rate] of the atmosphere, which is independent of radiative forcing from greenhouse gases and dependent only upon gravity and heat capacity of the atmosphere [lapse rate = -gravity/heat capacity]. Thus, an atmosphere comprised of only non-greenhouse gases such as nitrogen & oxygen [over 99% of Earth’s atmosphere] would create a temperature gradient/adiabatic lapse rate/”greenhouse effect” and not be isothermal as claimed by conventional radiative greenhouse proponents.
      67 Pehr Björnbom 05.01.2014 at. 00:29
      Maxwell discussed convective equilibrium in his book Theory of Heat, 1888, pp. 330-331:”
      https://archive.org/stream/theoryheat01maxwgoog#page/n22/mode/1up

  48. From the article: “A day on Venus is 117 Earth days.”
    I think this needs a little more detail:
    http://www.universetoday.com/36687/rotation-of-venus/#
    “When discussing Venus’ rotation, it is important to note certain distinctions. Rotation is the time it takes for a planet to spin once on its axis. This is different from a planet’s revolution, which is the time it takes for a planet to orbit around another object (i.e. the Sun). So while it takes the Earth one day (24 hours) to rotate once on its axis, it takes one year (365.256 days) to revolve once around the Sun.
    Rotational Period:
    Unlike most other planets in the Solar System, which rotate on their axes in an counter-clockwise direction, Venus rotates clockwise (called “retrograde” rotation). It also rotates very slowly, taking 243.025 Earth days to complete a single rotation. This is not only the slowest rotation period of any planet, it also means that a single day on Venus lasts longer than a Venusian year.
    And, as noted earlier, Venus’ rotation is backwards, relative to Earth and the other bodies in the Solar System. Technically, this means that its rotational period is -243,025 days. It also means that if you could view the Solar System from the position above its celestial north pole, all of the planets (except for Uranus, which rotates on its side!) would appear to be rotating counter-clockwise.
    Venus, however, would appear to be rotating in a clockwise direction. Because of this, if you could stand on the surface of Venus, you would witness the Sun rising in the west and setting in the east. But you would be waiting a very long time to see this happen! Read on to find out why…
    Sidereal vs. Solar Day:
    Another important thing to consider is the difference between a sidereal day and a solar day. A sidereal day corresponds to the amount of time it takes for a planet to rotate once on its axis, which in Venus’ case takes 243.025 Earth days. A solar day, by contrast, refers to the amount of time it takes for the Sun to reappear at the same point in the sky (i.e. between one sunrise/sunset and the next).
    A Venusian (aka. Cytherean) Solar Day is the equivalent to 116.75 days on Earth, which means that it takes almost 117 days for the sun to rise, set, and return to the same place in the sky. Doing the math, we then see that a single year on Venus (224.65 Earth days) works out to just 1.92 Venusian (solar) days.”

  49. PA, August 12, 2016 at 10:09 am wrote:
    “2. Venus doesn’t have a magnetic field because it is barely rotating. The earths core rotates backwards and the convection currents in the outer core creates the magnetic field.”
    The Earth’s core is a fascinating subject:
    http://www.livescience.com/39780-magnetic-field-pushes-earth-core.html
    Why Earth’s Inner and Outer Cores Rotate in Opposite Directions
    The Earth’s magnetic field controls the direction and speed at which Earth’s inner and outer cores spin, even though they move in opposite directions, new research suggests.
    Scientists have long suspected that Earth’s magnetic field — which protects life from harmful space radiation — drifts in a slightly westerly direction. That theory was established in the 1690s, when geophysicist Edmund Halley (the same Halley who spotted the eponymous comet) sailed aboard a research vessel through the South Atlantic Ocean and collected enough compass readings to identify this shift.
    By the mid-20th century, geologists had gathered further evidence for this drift and had determined that the westerly rotation of the magnetic field exerts a force on the liquid outer core— composed of a molten mix of iron and nickel — that causes it to rotate in a westerly direction. Decades later, geophysicists used deep seismic data to determine that the inner core — a solid iron-nickel alloy that is about the size of the moon — rotates in an easterly direction, at a greater speed than the rotation of the Earth itself.
    But, until now, scientists have regarded these rotations within the two layers of the core as separate, with no relation to each other.
    Now, researchers at the University of Leeds in England have found a common link between the two rotations by creating a computer model that shows how the rotation of the Earth’s magnetic field can both pull the liquid outer core in a westerly direction while also exerting an opposite force on the inner core that causes an easterly rotation.
    “Previously, there have been these two independent observations, and there has not been a link between them,” study co-author Philip Livermore, of the University of Leeds, told LiveScience’s OurAmazingPlanet. “We argue that the magnetic field itself is pushing on the outer core, and there is an equal and opposite push on the inner core.”

    • And what always causes magnetic fields?
      Skepticism of AGW is healthy. So too should be the view on conventional planetary science, the product of the inertia of decades. Question primordial accretion discs, self-generating magnetism, accepted solar system timelines, associated climate (see the Paleo climate record at WUWT, especially prior to about 12k BC) and the process whereby a number of planets somehow actively upwell energy.
      NASA is running on the momentum of habit; the product of its socialism for scientists who stay in line.

  50. My NASA culture modelling indicates that they would interpret Venus’s history in this way — where’s my Ph.D.? Also, since nobody understands how Venus’s rotation got the way it is today, it’s pretty rich to start projecting it into the past. A clue is that its siderial rotation is about the same as its year, but going in the other direction.

  51. Their study is pure imagination. They have no evidence as what Venus was like 2 billion years ago, not even any proxy information. The fact remains that even though Venus has an atmosphere that is more than 96% CO2 and is more than 90 times as massive as Earth’s atmosphere, there is no evidence of a radiative greenhouse effect. The high temperatures at the surface of Venus can all be accounted for by the planet’s proximity to the sun and its high surface pressure. Venus’s proximity to the sun may never have allowed it it have enough hydrogen to allow enough H2O to form an ocean.

  52. “Venus may have had a shallow liquid-water ocean and habitable surface temperatures for up to 2 billion years of its early history….”
    …and then CO2 went above 500ppm and runaway greenhouse effect destroyed the planet, just as it will do here. So, stop driving cars, stop using air conditioning, give all your money to your Approved Elected Officials, who will then rule over you from their Rolls Royces and their 30,000 square foot, air conditioned mansions, making sure you use as few resources as possible so they can live lavish lives never before dreamed of by humans. Because they’re important, and you’re not.

  53. It may be new to them, but water had been known to exist for awhile on Venus. What Venus doesn’t have that earth does is a magnetic field. Interesting that neither Mars or Venus has much in the way of a magnetic field and both at one time held a lot more water than today.
    A repeat in dragging out the tried and tired line about Venus being an example of a runaway green house. I guess the sea level rise and salt stories didn’t quite get the heretics on board. Maybe we could just skip this and copy and paste the arguments from achieves.

  54. The sun started out about 70% as luminous as it is now, and has been warming at a roughly constant rate ever since. In about 1.7 billion years, earth will suffer from a runaway greenhouse, and earth and Venus will become identical twins.

  55. How did they get a 114 day day down to a 60 day day?
    The reasoning that the clouds would stop the days warming is weak.
    Lack of rotation dooms the planet to a hot hell.

    • nicholasmjames
      August 12, 2016 at 7:24 pm : 90bars and nearly twice the solar input might have helped…..

  56. And another model suggests that a large asteroid impacted and melted Venus crust. You can find a theory for just about any event or cause you can think of. This is just one in a stew pot

  57. I don’t get out much… so I just want to double check on this. The same models that can’t hindcast earth’s weather for even a single year, without iterative tweaking that they don’t carry forward, was used to set up on a planet that is nothing like earth then used to hindcast billions of years. And that was published as peer-reviewed science.
    Did I get that right or am I missing something?

  58. “according to computer modeling of the planet’s ancient climate”
    Ah, so according to some sci-fi fantasy constructed by people who only pretend to be scientists.

  59. In a couple of comments made above, I have suggested that the early Earth had a rotational speed of just over 4 hours. I now think that I was mistaken and that it was around 6 hours. See Progress in Physics, Volume 1 January 2009.
    https://www.scribd.com/document/9498374/Length-of-Day-Earth-rotation
    <blockquote"The Length of the Day: A Cosmological Perspective (Arbab I. Arbab)
    "We have found an empirical law for the variation of the length of the Earth’s day wi h geologic time employing Wells’s data. We attribute the lengthening of the Earth’s day to the present cosmic expansion of the Universe. The prediction of law has been found to be in agreement with the astronomical and geological data. The day increases at a present rate of 0.002 sec / century. The length of the day is found to be 6 hours when the Earth formed. We have also found a new limit for the value of the Hubble constant and the age of the Universe."
    Always good to check facts and not simply rely on one’s memory before posting a comment! That said,the thrust of the point I made is not altered by this error.

  60. Always impressed when US officers prompt their chief by Sir, yes Sir.
    Regardless man /woman.
    Same why Vena is referred Venus:
    When God of War is looked upon Mar(u)s then God of peace is looked upon Ven(u)s.
    Not that bad, good ol’ indogerman.

  61. So they made stuff up regarding the early Venus world, run it through models proven to have low skill in a real world, and the best they can come up with is nobody knows: “These results show ancient Venus may have been a very different place than it is today.” It is impossible that early Venus would not have been a very different place than it is today. For one thing it is trillions of miles away from where it was then, and nobody knows what was happening there, then. We’re paying an awful lot of money for science that reliably produces “We dunno” results.

  62. How can it be habitable, when pressure at the surface is 90 atm ? Even if you magically somehow replace the atmospheric composition to reflect that on Earth, you still have the pressure, therefore the hellish temperatures.

  63. Like Earth, Venus heated from the centre with high internal pressure but unlike Earth the whole lot heated up; due to the thin crust the atmosphere generated was hot and dense from the beginning. This atmosphere of boiling H2SO4, SO2, SO3 etc was opaque to radiant energy from the Sun and there never was much if any GHE

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