Richard Lindzen Lecture at GWPF: ‘Global Warming for the Two Cultures’

by Dr. Richard Lindzen

Over half a century ago, C.P. Snow (a novelist and English physical chemist who also served in several important positions in the British Civil Service and briefly in the UK government) famously examined the implications of ‘two cultures’:

A good many times I have been present at gatherings of people who, by the standards of the traditional culture, are thought highly educated and who have with considerable gusto been expressing their incredulity at the illiteracy of scientists. Once or twice I have been provoked and have asked the company how many of them could describe the Second Law of Thermodynamics. The response was cold: it was also negative. Yet I was asking something which is the scientific equivalent of: Have you read a work of Shakespeare’s?

I now believe that if I had asked an even simpler question – such as, What do you mean by mass, or acceleration, which is the scientific equivalent of saying, Can you read? – not more than one in ten of the highly educated would have felt that I was speaking the same language. So the great edifice of modern physics goes up, and the majority of the cleverest people in the western world have about as much insight into it as their Neolithic ancestors would have had.

I fear that little has changed since Snow’s assessment 60 years ago. While some might maintain that ignorance of physics does not impact political ability, it most certainly impacts the ability of non-scientific politicians to deal with nominally science-based issues. The gap in understanding is also an invitation to malicious exploitation. Given the democratic necessity for non-scientists to take positions on scientific problems, belief and faith inevitably replace understanding, though trivially oversimplified false narratives serve to reassure the non-scientists that they are not totally without scientific ‘understanding.’ The issue of global warming offers numerous examples of all of this.

I would like to begin this lecture with an attempt to force the scientists in the audience to come to grips with the actual nature of the climate system, and to help the motivated non-scientists in this audience who may be in Snow’s ‘one in ten’ to move beyond the trivial oversimplifications.

The climate system

The following description of the climate system contains nothing that is in the least controversial, and I expect that anyone with a scientific background will readily follow the description. I will also try, despite Snow’s observations, to make the description intelligible to the non-scientist.

The system we are looking at consists in two turbulent fluids (the atmosphere and oceans) interacting with each other. By ‘turbulent,’ I simply mean that it is characterized by irregular circulations like those found in a gurgling brook or boiling water, but on the planetary scale of the oceans and the atmosphere. The opposite of turbulent is called laminar, but any fluid forced to move fast enough becomes turbulent and turbulence obviously limits predictability. By interaction, I simply mean that they exert stress on each other and exchange heat with each other.

These fluids are on a rotating planet that is unevenly heated by the sun. The motions in the atmosphere (and to a lesser extent in the oceans) are generated by the uneven influence of the sun. The sun, itself, can be steady, but it shines directly on the tropics while barely skimming the Earth at the poles. The drivers of the oceans are more complex and include forcing by wind as well as the sinking of cold and salty water. The rotation of the Earth has many consequences too, but for the present, we may simply note that it leads to radiation being distributed around a latitude circle.

The oceans have circulations and currents operating on time scales ranging from years to millennia, and these systems carry heat to and from the surface. Because of the scale and density of the oceans, the flow speeds are generally much smaller than in the atmosphere and are associated with much longer timescales. The fact that these circulations carry heat to and from the surface means that the surface, itself, is never in equilibrium with space. That is to say, there is never an exact balance between incoming heat from the sun and outgoing radiation generated by the Earth because heat is always being stored in and released from the oceans and surface temperature is always, therefore, varying somewhat.

In addition to the oceans, the atmosphere is interacting with a hugely irregular land surface. As air passes over mountain ranges, the flow is greatly distorted. Topography therefore plays a major role in modifying regional climate. These distorted air-flows even generate fluid waves that can alter climate at distant locations. Computer simulations of the climate generally fail to adequately describe these effects.

A vital constituent of the atmospheric component is water in the liquid, solid and vapor phases, and the changes in phase have vast impacts on energy flows. Each component also has important radiative impacts. You all know that it takes heat to melt ice, and it takes further heat for the resulting water to become vapor or, as it is sometimes referred to, steam. The term humidity refers to the amount of vapor in the atmosphere. The flow of heat is reversed when the phase changes are reversed; that is, when vapor condenses into water, and when water freezes. The release of heat when water vapor condenses drives thunder clouds (known as cumulonimbus), and the energy in a thundercloud is comparable to that released in an H-bomb. I say this simply to illustrate that these energy transformations are very substantial. Clouds consist of water in the form of fine droplets and ice in the form of fine crystals. Normally, these fine droplets and crystals are suspended by rising air currents, but when these grow large enough they fall through the rising air as rain and snow. Not only are the energies involved in phase transformations important, so is the fact that both water vapor and clouds (both ice- and water-based) strongly affect radiation. Although I haven’t discussed the greenhouse effect yet, I’m sure all of you have heard that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and that this explains its warming effect. You should, therefore, understand that the two most important greenhouse substances by far are water vapor and clouds. Clouds are also important reflectors of sunlight.

The unit for describing energy flows is watts per square meter. The energy budget of this system involves the absorption and reemission of about 200 watts per square meter. Doubling CO2 involves a 2% perturbation to this budget. So do minor changes in clouds and other features, and such changes are common. The Earth receives about 340 watts per square meter from the sun, but about 140 watts per square meter is simply reflected back to space, by both the Earth’s surface and, more importantly, by clouds. This leaves about 200 watts per square meter that the Earth would have to emit in order to establish balance. The sun radiates in the visible portion of the radiation spectrum because its temperature is about 6000K. ‘K’ refers to Kelvins, which are simply degrees Centigrade plus 273. Zero K is the lowest possible temperature (−273◦C). Temperature determines the spectrum of the emit- ted radiation. If the Earth had no atmosphere at all (but for purposes of argument still was reflecting 140 watts per square meter), it would have to radiate at a temperature of about 255K, and, at this temperature, the radiation is mostly in the infrared.

Of course, the Earth does have an atmosphere and oceans, and this introduces a host of complications. So be warned, what follows will require a certain amount of concentration. Evaporation from the oceans gives rise to water vapor in the atmosphere, and water vapor very strongly absorbs and emits radiation in the infrared. This is what we mean when we call water vapor a greenhouse gas. The water vapor essentially blocks infrared radiation from leaving the surface, causing the surface and (via conduction) the air adjacent to the surface to heat, and, as in a heated pot of water, convection sets on. Because the density of air decreases with height, the buoyant elements expand as they rise. This causes the buoy- ant elements to cool as they rise, and the mixing results in decreasing temperature with height rather than a constant temperature. To make matters more complicated, the amount of water vapor that the air can hold decreases rapidly as the temperature decreases. At some height there is so little water vapor above this height that radiation from this level can now escape to space. It is at this elevated level (around 5 km) that the temperature must be about 255K in order to balance incoming radiation. However, because convection causes temperature to decrease with height, the surface now has to actually be warmer than 255K. It turns out that it has to be about 288K (which is the average temperature of the Earth’s surface). This is what is known as the greenhouse effect. It is an interesting curiosity that had convection produced a uniform temperature, there wouldn’t be a greenhouse effect. In reality, the situation is still more complicated. Among other things, the existence of upper-level cirrus clouds, which are very strong absorbers and emitters of infrared radiation, effectively block infrared radiation from below. Thus, when such clouds are present above about 5 km, their tops rather than the height of 5 km determine the level from which infrared reaches space. Now the addition of other greenhouse gases (like carbon dioxide) elevates the emission level, and because of the convective mixing, the new level will be colder. This reduces the outgoing infrared flux, and, in order to restore balance, the atmosphere would have to warm. Doubling carbon dioxide concentration is estimated to be equivalent to a forcing of about 3.7 watts per square meter, which is little less than 2% of the net incoming 200 watts per square meter. Many factors, including cloud area and height, snow cover, and ocean circulations, commonly cause changes of comparable magnitude.

It is important to note that such a system will fluctuate with time scales ranging from seconds to millennia, even in the absence of an explicit forcing other than a steady sun. Much of the popular literature (on both sides of the climate debate) assumes that all changes must be driven by some external factor. Of course, the climate system is driven by the sun, but even if the solar forcing were constant, the climate would still vary. This is actually something that all of you have long known – even if you don’t realize it. After all, you have no difficulty recognizing that the steady stroking of a violin string by a bow causes the string to vibrate and generate sound waves. In a similar way, the atmosphere–ocean system responds to steady forcing with its own modes of variation (which, admittedly, are often more complex than the modes of a violin string). Moreover, given the massive nature of the oceans, such variations can involve timescales of millennia rather than milliseconds. El Niño is a relatively short ex- ample, involving years, but most of these internal time variations are too long to even be identified in our relatively short instrumental record. Nature has numerous examples of autonomous variability, including the approximately 11-year sunspot cycle and the reversals of the Earth’s magnetic field every couple of hundred thousand years or so. In this respect, the climate system is no different from other natural systems.

Of course, such systems also do respond to external forcing, but such forcing is not needed for them to exhibit variability. While the above is totally uncontroversial, please think about it for a moment. Consider the massive heterogeneity and complexity of the system, and the variety of mechanisms of variability as we consider the current narrative that is commonly presented as ‘settled science.’

The popular narrative and its political origins

Now here is the currently popular narrative concerning this system. The climate, a complex multifactor system, can be summarized in just one variable, the globally averaged tempera- ture change, and is primarily controlled by the 1-2% perturbation in the energy budget due to a single variable – carbon dioxide – among many variables of comparable importance.

This is an extraordinary pair of claims based on reasoning that borders on magical think- ing. It is, however, the narrative that has been widely accepted, even among many sceptics. This acceptance is a strong indicator of the problem Snow identified.

Many politicians and learned societies go even further: They endorse carbon dioxide as the controlling variable, and although mankind’s CO2 contributions are small compared to the much larger but uncertain natural exchanges with both the oceans and the biosphere, they are confident that they know precisely what policies to implement in order to control carbon dioxide levels.

While several scientists have put forward this view over the past 200 years, it was, until the 1980s, generally dismissed. When, in 1988, the NASA scientist James Hansen told the US Senate that the summer’s warmth reflected increased carbon dioxide levels, even Science magazine reported that the climatologists were sceptical. The establishment of this extreme position as dogma during the present period is due to political actors and others seeking to exploit the opportunities that abound in the multi-trillion dollar energy sector. One example was Maurice Strong, a global bureaucrat and wheeler-dealer (who spent his final years in China apparently trying to avoid prosecution for his role in the UN’s Oil for Food program scandals). Strong is frequently credited with initiating the global warming movement in the early 1980s, and he subsequently helped to engineer the Rio Conference that produced the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. Others like Olaf Palme and his friend, Bert Bolin, who was the first chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, were also involved as early as the 1970s.

Political enthusiasm has only increased since then as political ideology has come to play a major role. A few years ago, Christiana Figueres, then executive secretary of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, said that mankind was, for the first time in history, setting itself the task of intentionally changing the economic system.1

Ms. Figueres is not alone in believing this. Pope Francis’ closest adviser castigated con-servative climate change skeptics in the United States, blaming capitalism for their views.

Speaking with journalists, Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga criticized certain ‘movements’ in the United States that had preemptively come out in opposition to Francis’s planned en- cyclical on climate change. ‘The ideology surrounding environmental issues is too tied to a capitalism that doesn’t want to stop ruining the environment because they don’t want to give up their profits’, he said.

This past August, a paper appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Littered with ‘could be’s’ and ‘might be’s’, it conclude that ‘Collective human action’ is required to ‘steer the Earth System away from a potential threshold’ and keep it habitable. The authors said that this would involve ‘stewardship of the entire Earth System – biosphere, climate, and societies’, and that it might involve ‘decarbonization of the global economy, enhancement of biosphere carbon sinks, behavioral changes, technological innovations, new governance arrangements, and transformed social values’.

Remember, in a world that buys into the incoherent ‘precautionary principle,’ even the mere claim of remote possibility justifies extreme action.

Presumably, the power these people desperately seek includes the power to roll back the status and welfare that the ordinary person has acquired and continues to acquire through the fossil fuel generated industrial revolution and return them to their presumably more appropriate status as serfs. Many more among the world’s poorest will be forbidden the opportunity to improve their condition.

Nevertheless, when these claims are presented to the leaders of our societies, along with the bogus claim that 97% of scientists agree, our leaders are afraid to differ, and proceed, lemming-like, to plan for the suicide of industrial society. Again, nothing better illustrates the problem that Snow identified.

Interestingly, however, ‘ordinary’ people (as opposed to our ‘educated’ elites) tend to see through the nonsense being presented. What is it about our elites that makes them so vulnerable, and what is it about many of our scientists that leads them to promote such foolishness? The answers cannot be very flattering to either. Let us consider the ‘vulnerable’ elites first.

  1. They have been educated in a system where success has been predicated on their ability to please their professors. In other words, they have been conditioned to rationalize anything.
  2. While they are vulnerable to false narratives, they are far less economically vulnerable than are ordinary people. They believe themselves wealthy enough to withstand the economic pain of the proposed policies, and they are clever enough to often benefit from them.
  3. The narrative is trivial enough for the elite to finally think that they ‘understand’ science.
  4. For many (especially on the right), the need to be regarded as intelligent causes them to fear that opposing anything claimed to be ‘scientific’ might lead to their being regarded as ignorant, and this fear overwhelms any ideological commitment to liberty that they might have.

None of these factors apply to ‘ordinary’ people. This may well be the strongest argument for popular democracy and against the leadership of those ‘who know best.’

What about the scientists?

  1. Scientists are specialists. Few are expert in climate. This includes many supposed ‘climate scientists’ who became involved in the area in response to the huge increases in funding that have accompanied global warming hysteria.
  2. Scientists are people with their own political positions, and many have been enthusiastic about using their status as scientists to promote their political positions (not unlike celebrities whose status some scientists often aspire to). As examples, consider the movements against nuclear weapons, against the Strategic Defense Initiative, against the Vietnam War, and so on.

Scientists are also acutely and cynically aware of the ignorance of non-scientists and the fear that this engenders. This fear leaves the ‘vulnerable’ elites particularly relieved by assurances that the theory underlying the alarm is trivially simple and that ‘all’ scientists agree. Former senator and Secretary of State John F. Kerry is typical when he stated, with reference to greenhouse warming, ‘I know sometimes I can remember from when I was in high school and college, some aspects of chemistry or physics can be tough. But this is not tough. This is simple. Kids at the earliest age can understand this’. As you have seen, the greenhouse effect is not all that simple. Only remarkably brilliant kids would understand it. Given Kerry’s subsequent description of climate and its underlying physics, it was clear that he was not up to the task.

The evidence

At this point, some of you might be wondering about all the so-called evidence for dangerous climate change. What about the disappearing Arctic ice, the rising sea level, the weather extremes, starving polar bears, the Syrian Civil War, and all the rest of it? The vast variety of the claims makes it impossible to point to any particular fault that applies to all of them. Of course, citing the existence of changes – even if these observations are correct (although surprisingly often they are not) – would not implicate greenhouse warming per se. Nor would it point to danger. Note that most of the so-called evidence refers to matters of which you have no personal experience. Some of the claims, such as those relating to weather extremes, contradict what both physical theory and empirical data show. The purpose of these claims is obviously to frighten and befuddle the public, and to make it seem like there is evidence where, in fact, there is none. If there is evidence of anything, it is of the correctness of C.P. Snow’s observation. Some examples will show what I mean.

First, for something to be evidence, it must have been unambiguously predicted. (This is a necessary, but far from sufficient condition.) Figure 1 shows the IPCC model forecasts for the summer minimum in Arctic sea ice in the year 2100 relative to the period 1980–2000. As you can see, there is a model for any outcome. It is a little like the formula for being an expert marksman: shoot first and declare whatever you hit to be the target.

Turning to the issue of temperature extremes, is there any data to even support concern? As to these extremes, the data shows no trend and the IPCC agrees. Even Gavin Schmidt, Jim Hansen’s successor at NASA’s New York shop, GISS, has remarked that ‘general statements about extremes are almost nowhere to be found in the literature but seem to abound in the popular media’. He went on to say that it takes only a few seconds’ thought to realise that the popular perceptions that ‘global warming means all extremes have to increase all the time‘ is ‘nonsense’.

 

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Figure 1: Climate model projections of rate of Arctic sea ice loss. Source: Eisenman et al., J. Clim., 2011.

At the heart of this nonsense is the failure to distinguish weather from climate. Thus, global warming refers to the welcome increase in temperature of about 1◦C since the end of the Little Ice Age about 200 years ago. On the other hand, weather extremes involve temperature changes of the order of 20◦C. Such large changes have a profoundly different origin from global warming. Crudely speaking, they result from winds carrying warm and cold air from distant regions that are very warm or very cold. These winds are in the form of waves. The strength of these waves depends on the temperature difference between the tropics and the Arctic (with larger differences leading to stronger waves). Now, the models used to project global warming all predict that this temperature difference will decrease rather than increase. Thus, the increase in temperature extremes would best support the idea of global cooling rather than global warming. However, scientifically illiterate people seem incapable of distinguishing global warming of climate from temperature extremes due to weather. In fact, as has already been noted, there doesn’t really seem to be any discernible trend in weather extremes. There is only the greater attention paid by the media to weather, and the exploitation of this ‘news’ coverage by people who realize that projections of catastrophe in the distant future are hardly compelling, and that they therefore need a way to convince the public that the danger is immediate, even if it isn’t.

This has also been the case with sea-level rise. Sea level has been increasing by about 8 inches per century for hundreds of years, and we have clearly been able to deal with it. In order to promote fear, however, those models that predict much larger increases are invoked. As a practical matter, it has long been known that at most coastal locations, changes in sea level, as measured by tide gauges, are primarily due to changes in land level associated with both tectonics and land use.

Moreover, the small change in global mean temperature (actually the change in temperature increase) is much smaller than what the computer models used by the IPCC have predicted. Even if all this change were due to man, it would be most consistent with low sensitivity to added carbon dioxide, and the IPCC only claims that most (not all) of the warming over the past 60 years is due to man’s activities. Thus, the issue of man-made climate change does not appear to be a serious problem. However, this hardly stops ignorant politicians from declaring that the IPCC’s claim of attribution is tantamount to unambiguous proof of coming disaster.

Cherry picking is always an issue. Thus, there has been a recent claim that Greenland ice discharge has increased, and that warming will make it worse.2 Omitted from the report is the finding by both NOAA and the Danish Meteorological Institute that the ice mass of Greenland has actually been increasing.3 In fact both these observations can be true, and, indeed, ice build-up pushes peripheral ice into the sea.

Misrepresentation, exaggeration, cherry picking, or outright lying pretty much covers all the so-called evidence.

Conclusion

So there you have it. An implausible conjecture backed by false evidence and repeated incessantly has become politically correct ‘knowledge,’ and is used to promote the overturn of industrial civilization. What we will be leaving our grandchildren is not a planet damaged by industrial progress, but a record of unfathomable silliness as well as a landscape degraded by rusting wind farms and decaying solar panel arrays. False claims about 97% agreement will not spare us, but the willingness of scientists to keep mum is likely to much reduce trust in and support for science. Perhaps this won’t be such a bad thing after all – certainly as concerns ‘official’ science.

There is at least one positive aspect to the present situation. None of the proposed policies will have much impact on greenhouse gases. Thus we will continue to benefit from the one thing that can be clearly attributed to elevated carbon dioxide: namely, its effective role as a plant fertilizer, and reducer of the drought vulnerability of plants. Meanwhile, the IPCC is claiming that we need to prevent another 0.5◦C of warming, although the 1◦C that has occurred so far has been accompanied by the greatest increase in human welfare in history. As we used to say in my childhood home of the Bronx: ‘Go figure’.

This published version of the lecture contains minor editorial changes to the text as delivered by Professor Lindzen.

Notes

1. ‘This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution.’

2. KA Graeter et al. (2018) Ice core records of West Greenland melt and climate forcing.Geophysical Research Letters 45(7), 3164–3172. https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2017GL076641

3. https://www.climate.gov/news-features/understanding-climate/greenland-ice-sheets-2017-weigh-suggests-small-increase-ice-mass

PDF version of this lecture: https://www.thegwpf.org/content/uploads/2018/10/Lindzen-2018-GWPF-Lecture.pdf


Richard S. Lindzen was Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology until his retirement in 2013. He is the author of over 200 papers on meteorology and climatology and is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences and of the Academic Advisory Council of GWPF.

https://www.thegwpf.com/

h/t to WUWT reader “Latitude”.

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156 thoughts on “Richard Lindzen Lecture at GWPF: ‘Global Warming for the Two Cultures’

  1. There are many issues I don’t study up on. For example, I’m not going to click on any article that has the word “Kardashian” in the title. I couldn’t care less about them.

    But that should imply that I’m not going to be passionate about any issue that revolves around the Kardashians. If I choose to stay uninformed about something, being a passionate advocate of a point of view about that thing would be a contradiction.

    Yet that is exactly what the left is telling people to do about climate change.

    • Nothing is allowed to interfere with the narrative, Latitude.

      Lindzen wrote a similar paper in 1992 (pdf).

      If you look at his publications page at MIT, you’ll find further such papers in 1993, 1996, 1997,, 2006, 2008, etc. etc.

      It didn’t help then, and it won’t help now.

      • Speaking the truth to lies always leaves a mark and keeps the informed strong in the face of the unreasonable and irrational.

  2. Lindzen’s entire argument appears to be that because he doesn’t believe in something it can’t be
    true. Nowhere does he produce any evidence against CO2 induced global warming but rather he just
    calls it “an implausible conjecture”. Furthermore he appears to get the physics of the greenhouse effect
    wrong. Convection has nothing to do with the radiative greenhouse effect — a simple 1D model of the
    atmosphere including the correct emission and absorption lines will produce the greenhouse effect
    and gives a surface temperature of about 288K see
    http://acmg.seas.harvard.edu/people/faculty/djj/book/bookchap7.html
    for the model. Such a model does not have convection. He also states that “convection causes temperature
    to decrease with height” which is incorrect since if you heat a pan from the bottom convection causes the
    hot water to rise and so increases the temperature rather than decreases it.

    It is also worth nothing that he actually accepts that humans are causing the earth to warm and hence the
    climate to change. Firstly he states that “Doubling carbon dioxide concentration is estimated to be equivalent
    to a forcing of about 3.7 watts per square meter” then a few paragraphs later he states that “Of course, such
    systems also do respond to external forcing, but such forcing is not needed for them to exhibit variability.” Or
    in other words the climate will respond to an external forcing and we are supplying one in terms of rising CO2 levels.

    • You forgot to take the line-breaks out of your cut-and-paste, Percy. One suspects you’re a mere eNGO worker-bee.

      Lindzen showed that climate models are useless. As the entire case of CO2-induced warming rests on climate models, a demonstration that they can’t predict anything, including the effect of CO2, makes the entire claim utterly moot.

      Lindzen also pointed out that any effect of CO2 is lost within the other similar-sized and larger spontaneous energetic exchanges within the climate system.

      Also, Lindzen does not, “actually [accept] that humans are causing the earth to warm…” The relevant sentence starts out, “ Even if all this change were due to man,…,” i.e., for the sake of argument he’s granting the IPCC position. Poor reading skill in evidence there, Percy.

      Your heated pan analogy is priceless. A pan of water heated at the bottom is hottest at the heat-source, i.e., at the bottom. At the top, where evaporation happens, the water is least hot.

      Yeah, we’re supplying a forcing. The question is, what will the climate do with it. Thus far, nothing discernible.

      • Pat,
        The point about convection and a heated pan from the bottom is that without convection the top would be cooler than it would be if there was convection moving heat from the bottom to the top.
        So although in both cases the top is at a lower temperature than the bottom the fact is that convection heats the top layer. Similarly convection heats the upper atmosphere and does not
        “cause the temperature to decrease with height”.

        • Percy writes “if you heat a pan from the bottom convection causes the hot water to rise and so increases the temperature rather than decreases it.”

          Unfortunately for your argument, the water doesn’t expand like the atmosphere does and consequently doesn’t cool as a result. This basic physics is lost on you, I’m afraid. Its not lost on Lindzen, though. He described it.

          • LOL Even with a political science degree I could figure out that water density at the top of the pan was most likely close to water density at the bottom of the pan. As opposed to atmospheric density. Please save me from these people.

        • As pointed out to you, the temperature gradient is because air expands as it rises and does PV work. Heat energy becomes gravitational energy and adiabatic lapse rate refers to the theoretical 10°C per kilometer from that simple calculation. The top of the pan of water is cooler because the heat is lost from the top and added at the bottom. The gradient is bigger when transfer of heat to the top is slower than loss of heat from the top. Very different.

        • Percy, your ignorance of thermodynamics is showing. It is the pressure drop with increasing altitude that causes the temperature to cool (adiabatic cooling), and convection that causes the atmosphere heated at the surface to rise to increasing altitudes.

          • Lindzen stated
            “Because the density of air decreases with height, the buoyant elements expand as they rise. This causes the buoy- ant elements to cool as they rise, and the mixing results in decreasing temperature with height rather than a constant temperature. ”

            Weinstein stated
            “It is the pressure drop with increasing altitude that causes the temperature to cool (adiabatic cooling),”

            If both of these are true it seems to support the gravity theory of the greenhouse effect as espoused by Dr. Nikolov and others.

          • You have to remember the statement was made in the context of convection. I think Lindzen could have been more precise with this description as its open to misunderstanding.

        • Oh dear!
          Percy,
          You are confusing the mechanics of compressable and incompressable fluids… the difference explains why planes fly and ships float and not the other way round!
          Go figure

          • i don’t think we have much to worry about. the person that made the statement is obviously an idiot. no matter what the system, be it capitalism or anything else, the same people will making the most money and running the show.so no, they aren’t worried about their profits as whatever system idiots like cardinal oscar come up with, they will still be the winners.

            “Speaking with journalists, Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga criticized certain ‘movements’ in the United States that had preemptively come out in opposition to Francis’s planned en- cyclical on climate change. ‘The ideology surrounding environmental issues is too tied to a capitalism that doesn’t want to stop ruining the environment because they don’t want to give up their profits’, he said.

      • “As the entire case of CO2-induced warming rests on climate models,”

        And no it doesn’t.
        The predictions of the GHE predate the advance of computational science…

        Svante Arrhenius (1859-1927) in 1896 came up with a figure of 5C for x2 CO2 (IPCC projections lie in the range 1.5 to 4.5C)

        https://www.lenntech.com/greenhouse-effect/global-warming-history.htm

        Callenedar made one of the first in 1938….
        https://phys.org/news/2018-06-years-earth-due-greenhouse-gas.html
        http://sci-hub.tw/https://doi.org/10.1002/qj.49706427503

        “”Of recent years much new knowledge has been accumulated
        which has a direct bearing upon this problem, and it is now possible
        to make a reasonable estimate of the effect of carbon dioxide on
        temperatures, and also of the rate at which the gas accumulates in
        the atmosphere. Amongst important factors in such calculations
        may be mentioned the temperature-pressure-alkalinity-C02 relation
        for sea water, determined by C. J. Fox (1909), the vapour pressure/atmospheric
        radiation relation, observed by A. Angstrom (1918) and
        others, the absorption spectrum of atmospheric water vapour,
        observed by Fowle (I~IS), and a full knowledge of the thermal
        structure of the atmosphere. ”

        This one was made in 1966…

        https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2017/03/15/the-first-climate-model-turns-50-and-predicted-global-warming-almost-perfectly/#4d327c826614
        http://sci-hub.tw/https://doi.org/10.1175/1520-0469(1967)024%3C0241:TEOTAW%3E2.0.CO;2

        “According to our estimate, a doubling of the CO2 content in the atmosphere has the effect of raising the temperature of the atmosphere (whose relative humidity is fixed) by about 2C. Our model does not have the extreme sensitivity of atmospheric temperature to changes of CO2 content which was adduced by Möller.”

        Models implement empirical physics and provide results that are used for understanding. The IPCC does not say they are definitive. Hence the 1.5 to 4.5C range is little different to Arrhenius’ 5C at the top end. Natural variation is what clouds the issue. That increasing atmospheric CO2 by over 40% causes the Earth to cool less efficiently is not in question. ~120 years of observation and radiative physics advances ensures that.

        This experiment spectroscopically analysed down-welling LWIR over a 10 year period at 2 dry locations shows the increase in forcing caused by CO2…..

        https://phys.org/news/2015-02-carbon-dioxide-greenhouse-effect.html
        http://sci-hub.tw/10.1038/nature14240

        “Increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations between 2000 and 2010
        have led to increases in clear-sky surface radiative forcing of over
        0.2 W/m2 at mid- and high-latitudes.”

        • “Models implement empirical physics and provide results that are used for understanding”

          Absurd.
          Some of the formulae embedded in some of the program code, may include alleged CO₂ forcing in their calculations, they utterly fail to truly represent atmosphere interactions.

          Thirty years of failed model runs and the model designers and coders have still failed to correct their models. Another case where faith overwhelms science.

          Just as the modelers, allegedly from weather models, predict all sorts of disasters. Predictions that fail, time after time.

          Normal science considers the science behind such failures as invalidated when a prediction fails once. Climate models have failed repeatedly.

          Svante Arrhenius conducted a miniscule experiment where he cooked CO₂ with a light and from that, he correctly identified CO₂ as a GHG. The rest of his predictions are speculation and not borne out by Arrhenius’s limited experiments.

          As far as Svante Arrhenius’s experiment:
          * How many watts of light did Arrhenius use in his experiment?
          * Was Arrhenius’s experiment sealed, negating convection?
          * What thermometer did Arrhenius use? How does that thermometer react to XX watts of light energy?
          * How much energy did the CO₂ radiate away and how fast did it take for the cylinder of CO₂ return to ambient temperatures?
          * Using the exact same experiment setup, did Arrhenius compare CO₂ to other greenhouse gases? e.g. water vapor?

          As with so many other leaps of assumption, from the tiniest bits of fact, alarmists claim that Arrhenius proved global warming, Arrhenius did not, he did demonstrate that CO₂ is a GHG.

          • In the sealed jar experiment using argon there was even more warming than using CO2, and argon isn’t even a greenhouse gas.

          • “…he did demonstrate that CO₂ is a GHG.” What a wonderful use of a Nobel Prize winner’s mind. What to add to greenhouses.

          • Good point, Gary. Arrhenius’ revised estimate of 1.5C per CO2 doubling is in the same ballpark as the most recent ECS estimates .

        • If you pay attention to the phys.org reference, when CO2 increased from 365 to 400 ppm, forcing increased by 400 mw, where the 35ppm increase represented 1/8 of the doubling from 280 ppm pre-industrial levels, Multiply 8 times 400 mw results in 3.2 W/m^2 of forcing from doubling CO2 which.is less than the 3.7 W/m^2 often claimed. BTW, no serious skeptic will deny that this is actually occurring.

          Furthermore, this is the net result after all the major feedbacks have had their influence on the system as illustrated by the rapid response of changes in forcing to changes in CO2 concentrations. To offset the 3.2 W/m^2 arriving back to the surface from doubling CO2, the surface temperature must rise by 0.6C which is far less than the 3C claimed. Where your side blew it was over estimating the forcing and then amplifying it by nebulous and unspecified positive feedback to boost the 0.6C up to 3C.

          You really need to understand the references you cite if you expect to prove the CAGW point. Instead, the references you cite show the exact opposite.

      • The “heated pan” is your misphrasing and obvious misunderstanding of what Lindzen stated.

        You need to return to the beginning where Lindzen describes two turbulent fluids. The ocean is full of turbulent fluid.
        Lindzen’s pot of water where turbulence can be easily seen as the water heats is a small portion the overall process Lindzen describes.

        Percy’s misunderstanding of Lindzen’s description exemplifies Lindzen’s use of C. P. Snow’s “two cultures” discussion. i.e. that of the ignorant culture that demands the illogical and irrational “incoherent ‘precautionary principle,’ even the mere claim of remote possibility justifies extreme action.

        • You can’t educate these clowns,ATK. They aren’t really interested in the science. It’s just a cover for their Socialist dreams of world dominance.

    • Nowhere does he produce any evidence against CO2 induced global warming …

      The burden of proof lies on the people who make the CAGW claim. Put another way, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. link

      The alarmists make claims and demand action that will require upsetting civilization as we know it. Their evidence should be bullet proof. Indeed, while they invoke the precautionary principle, that very principle demands that we take no such action without absolute proof that it is necessary and that it will work.

      Dr. Lindzen demonstrates the implausibility of the basic science claims underlying CAGW.

      implausible
      adjective
      (of an argument or statement) not seeming reasonable or probable; failing to convince. OED

      Dr. Lindzen has demonstrated that CAGW doesn’t even pass the smell test. It falls so short of the required level of proof that it will be regarded by future generations as entirely risible. It will be mentioned along with other idiocies like tulip mania.

      • The issue with arguing about plausibility is that what is plausible differs from person to
        person even among reasonable rational human beings. Einstein thought that quantum
        mechanics was wrong since he believed that “God does not play dice with the universe”
        and similarly many other scientists born in the 19th century would have agreed with him.
        But he was wrong, just as everyone who thought special relativity was implausible were
        wrong as well.

        Plenty of people believe that the claims about CO2 and global warming are plausible. This
        includes the vast majority of scientists – so if you want to argue about a “smell test” it clearly
        passes it according to most scientists. Which doesn’t imply that it is correct any more than
        saying that Lindzen finds it implausible means that it is wrong. It is a logically unsound argument either way.

          • surely the burden of proof was amply covered by the IPCC panel’s report. Their
            5th assessment report summarises the current state of the evidence as published
            in the scientific literature and comes to over 1000 pages. So while there is certainly
            a burden of proof on making extraordinary claims climate scientists have done that
            and continue to produce new summaries of the body of knowledge with each IPCC report.
            I would suggest that the burden of proof is now on the other foot.

          • The extraordinary claim that is missing its extraordinary proof is how can the next W/m^2 of forcing increase surface emissions by 4.3 W/m^2 (the increase in emissions from an 0.8C increase), while each of the current 239 W/m^2 of forcing only contribute 1.6 W/m^2 of surface emissions. How can the next Joule be differentiated from the other Joules, when all are arriving at the same time?

            The 1000 pages of your ‘evidence’ is nothing but speculation on top of speculation, supported with demonstrably broken models. There is not one shred of evidence based on the known laws of physics and the reason is that these immutable laws contradict the presumed, indeed the required, sensitivity.

          • So co2,
            What sort of evidence would you accept? The extraordinary claim you mention is
            in fact a prediction about what will happen in the future if CO2 levels keep on rising.
            Clearly there is no controlled experiment we can do to prove whether or not the claim
            is true since there is only one earth. So we are either left with (a) making models of the
            climate and (b) waiting until it is too late and seeing who was right. Going with climate
            models is the best option – and in general they work well – they predict the average temperature of the earth to within about 0.1% and they produce the nature climatic variations like El Nino that Lindzen talks about so they represent our best estimate for what the future climate will be like.
            None of the climate models break any of the known laws of physics.

            Or is there some other sort of evidence that you would like to see?

          • @Percy Jackson

            ‘they predict the average temperature of the earth to within about 0.1%’

            No buddy. It is not the *absolute temperature* that we need them to predict.

            It is the *change* in temperatures. That is what the ‘global warming’ debate is all about

            And at that they are very poor indeed.

          • Percy doth quote:

            Going with climate
            models is the best option

            Then why Percy, did the IPCC in AR5 (which you seem fond of quoting) set aside the models on the premise that they run too hot and substitute “expert opinion” for their sensitivity range?

            Live by the IPCC, die by the IPCC.

          • Percy doth pontificate:

            as published
            in the scientific literature and comes to over 1000 pages. So while there is certainly
            a burden of proof on making extraordinary

            Hey I read that report. The section on economics says that everything from lifestyle to technology will not only have a bigger effect than climate change, but much bigger. Even winter tourism!

            So it matters not if the report was 1,000 pages or 100,000 pages, it is quite clear that there is no cause for alarm and that we have bigger things to worry about than climate change. Even winter tourism is going to be largely unaffected by climate change!

            Live by the IPCC, die by the IPCC.

          • Percy,
            The only evidence that would convince me would be a quantification of the ECS in terms of the known laws of physics. We can apply the SB Law and COE to a planet without an atmosphere and the ECS is given EXACTLY as dT/dP = 1/(4oT^3), where P = oT^4 and o is the SB constant of 5.67E-8 W/m^2 per K^4. At 255K, the sensitivity is about 0.3C per W/m^2 and at 288K, it’s a bit less than 0.2C per W/m^2.

            We can extend this model to a planet with an atmosphere. If the atmosphere had the same N2/O2 concentrations as Earth, the average temperature will not change from the case without an atmosphere and the only effect we would see is a moderation of the daytime highs and nighttime lows. The average temperature remains the same, as long as you consider the average temperature to be the SB temperature associated with the average emitted energy which must be equal to the incident energy. The sensitivity is then given exactly by the same equation as in the case without an atmosphere and it has the same 1/T^3 dependence.

            What physics supports increasing the sensitivity from somewhere between 0.2 and 0.3 C per W/m^2 all the way up to somewhere between 0.4C and 1.2C per W/m^2 by adding two trace gases to the system, CO2 and H2O?

            A non ideal black body is called a gray body and can be completely quantified by an emissivity between 0 and 1, in which case the sensitivity becomes dT/dP = 1/(4eoT^3), where e is the emissivity. For the Earth, oT^4 quantifies surface emissions at the surface temperature, T, and e=.62 will scale surface emissions to produce the required output emissions, which results in a sensitivity of about 0.3C per W/m^2 at T = 288K and P = 239 W/m^2 for the gray body model of the planet. What physics supports quantifying a non ideal Black body radiator like the Earth in a manner other than as a gray body?

            The only possibility is the disassociate the T^4 relationship between temperature and emissions which leads to the 1/T^3 dependence on the sensitivity. What physics supports deviations from the Stefan-Boltzmann Law where emissions are not proportional to the temperature raised to the fourth power?

            An exercise for you is to plot what the sensitivity must be is as a function of forcing (from 0 to 239 W/m^2) that when integrated over the forcing results in the current surface temperature. You will never be able to come up with a sensitivity profile that ends anywhere within the range of the ECS presumed by the IPCC.

        • Percy asks “What sort of evidence would you accept?”

          I don’t think we can even answer the question with today’s technology and today’s data.

        • One issue is the very compelling evidence that the theory of CO2 warming has succeeded by bullying the science and ignoring any evidence that doesn’t support the theory, which has become the politically correct theory a la Lysenkoism.

          What evidence? Climategate emails, for example. The numerous serious critiques of the general incompetence of the IPCC, by McKitrick for example. The example of what can only be called the fraud of Mann’s hockey stick, and the subsequent erasure of our prior understanding of medieval, Roman, etc warm periods. The recently discussed unreliability of the official temperature record. The fraud of assigning reef deaths to CO2, when actual causes are clearly identified in the scientific literature as belonging to overfishing, low sea levels in conjunction with solar insolation, and other causes that don’t involve the warming of the oceans by the atmosphere. I could go on, as I’m sure others can. There is no end to the misrepresentation of evidence that characterizes mainstream climate science, which should properly be called a pseudoscience.

    • It is telling that you construct your critique around the notion that Lindzen “believes” something. This is called transference in the world of psychobabble. You presuppose how Lindzen thinks … based on your own thought processes. When science is properly done, belief per se is not required.

      Also, your complaint about his discussion of convection in the atmosphere ignores completely his description of the role ow water in the atmosphere. Surely the release of enormous amounts of energy within a thunder head are of some significance? And the complex role of clouds in both preventing the loss of heat, and in reflecting sun light, require some consideration? He also makes the point that the total production of CO2 by our industrial society is but one source of CO2, and it is relatively small compared to the many natural sources that we know exist, but can’t quantify accurately. I would also add that it is unlikely that these natural sources are uniform and unchanging.

      • Robert,
        Lindzen is not doing science. His only claim is that CO2 induced global warming is “implausible”
        this is not a scientific statement but a statement of personal belief. If you read the article carefully he fully accepts the theory of radiative greenhouse gases but finds the results implausible and so
        doesn’t believe them. That is not science being done properly.

        • Percy: From your rantings I suspect you wouldn’t recognize ‘Science’ if it jumped up and bit you in the Gluteus Maximus. Get some basic understanding before you dismiss real scientists like Dr. Lindzen. I recommend to start with some lectures by Richard Feynman – easily found on YouTube.

        • Hi, Percy
          I do agree that the Lindzen essay is not a scientific paper (at least, not in the same way that many papers Lindzen has written are pure science). It is actually a rather beautiful and very concise piece of literature and is only intended to lay out the basic story of how and why the ‘consensus’ of some scientists and many administrators and politicians has taken up the AGW threat and run with it in such an exaggerated way, and why the reasons that they do so are fundamentally unsupported. Leave the details for elsewhere, as there are plenty of threads on this site where you can challenge your antagonists line by line.

          Look on Dr. Lindzen’s piece in the same way as you think about a Reith Lecture. Actually, it would make a very good Reith Lecture- authoritative, informative and provocative- though there is zero likelihood that a climate contrarian, however distinguished, would be invited by the BBC to give it.

        • “His only claim is that CO2 induced global warming is “implausible”
          this is not a scientific statement but a statement of personal belief.”

          But peer reviewers use the word in their evaluations, no? So do some scientific papers, IIRC, although they may soften it with “on the face of it.”

      • @percy jackson

        ‘His only claim is that CO2 induced global warming is “implausible”’

        Nope.

        Read it again. More carefully this time.

        Here’s what he actually said was the implausible proposition.

        Not what you imagine him to have done

        ‘ The climate, a complex multifactor system, can be summarized in just one variable, the globally averaged tempera- ture change, and is primarily controlled by the 1-2% perturbation in the energy budget due to a single variable – carbon dioxide – among many variables of comparable importance.

        • Latimer,
          Here is what he says “Of course, such systems also do respond to external forcing, but such forcing is not needed for them to exhibit variability. ” So in other words the climate will
          respond to an external forcing such as the human driven rise in CO2 levels. So he is admitting at the start of his talk the very thing that he disputes later on.

          • Yep.

            The climate will respond to many forcings. CO2 may be one of them. But it is not the only one.

            Read the ‘implausible proposition’ again .

            ‘The climate, a complex multifactor system, can be summarized in just one variable, the globally averaged temperature change, and is primarily controlled by the 1-2% perturbation in the energy budget due to a single variable – carbon dioxide – among many variables of comparable importance’

    • Percy,
      You don’t seem to understand what the controversy is all about. It’s not that the climate changes or that CO2 is a GHG or that GHG’s (and clouds) make the surface warmer than it would be otherwise, or that man is increasing atmospheric CO2. The controversy is about the climate sensitivity, or how much warming 3.7 W/m^2 of equivalent forcing from doubling CO2 will cause. The IPCC and its self serving consensus claims that each W/m^2 of forcing will increase the surface temperature by 0.8C +/- 0.4C, so when you multiply 3.7 W/m^2 times the nominal 0.8C per W/m^2, you get the magic 3C increase claimed to arise from doubling CO2.

      The IPCC’s sensitivity has absolutely no support from the physics or the data. It’s only support comes from models whose predictive ability is zero. The laws of physics and the data suggest a climate sensitivity of between 0.2 and 0.3C per W/m^2, or between about 0.75C and 1C for doubling CO2 and is nothing to be the least bit concerned about. Note that the even the directly measured sensitivity to solar energy is less than the lower limit suggested by the IPCC and that based on the IPCC sensitivity, we should have already experienced about a 1.5C increase from increased CO2 alone, plus a 1C or so rebound from the LIA, which coincidentally ended as the Industrial revolution started. We have barely seen the expected rebound from the LIA.

      It’s important to understand where the IPCC sensitivity came from in the first place. When the first IPCC report was created, the range of sensitivity was arbitrarily set so that the effect was large enough to justify the formation of the UNFCCC and the IPCC charter was established to identify science in support of that position.

      The fact that there’s no overlap in the sensitivity predicted by alarmists and predicted and measured by skeptics is why this controversy will never go away until the true value of the sensitivity can be ascertained and the skeptics clearly have the upper hand.

      • co2isnotevil:

        Yes. Sensitivity is the crux of the matter. It stems from the Plank equation : delta energy = K * delta temperature where K is a coefficient now called climate sensitivity. This coefficient is the detail where the devil lies and is very variable depending on specific cirmstances.

        For instance at the phase change of water K = Zero. and water has a considerable influence on the climate. Guessing the overall figure on a global basis for a chaotic system is scientifically illiterate as it cannot be predicted by reference to the past due to the chaos involved and it’s variable nature.
        OK you can bet on it and ponder; but you will never really know; so all this talk about proof is a waste of time.
        Meanwhile the Greenblob predictions continue to fall at every hurdle amid the confusion between weather and climate.

        • Alasdair,

          The Planck equation is E=hv and is fundamental to Quantum Mechanics and except for how this relates to the energy of a photon, it has no other relationship to the climate sensitivity. The equation E = kT is the relationship between STORED energy and temperature (i.e. 1 calorie, 1 cc of water, 1C) and is not the relationship between emissions and temperature which is the relationship that’s fundamental to the energy balance and the sensitivity. The consensus seems horribly confused about this difference and even many skeptics have been bamboozled.

          Emissions and temperature are related by the Stefan-Boltzmann LAW where W/m^2 of emissions are proportional to T^4 and in the steady state, NET emissions from the surface are equal to the NET input power entering the surface. One of the biggest of many errors made by consensus climate science was to linearize this relationship over a narrow range of T providing the wiggle room to support what the physics can not.

          The reason it was linearized by Schlesinger was so the climate system could be shoehorned into Bode’s LINEAR feedback amplifier analysis, which is only valid for linear relationships. Unfortunately, Bode is not valid for approximately linear systems either, so the linearization obfuscation was in vain.

          Bode’s linearity constraint requires each W/m^2 to contribute equally to the result in order for feedback to be relevant. The idea of positive feedback is all they have as a theoretical foundation for a sensitivity as high as they need to justify CAGW. The necessary condition to apply Bode is that if the output is X (surface emissions) for an input of Y (solar forcing), the surface emissions will be 2X for solar forcing of 2Y. Note that the climate model output is temperature in degrees K not emissions in W/m^2 which is another error that arose from the assumption of approximate linearity between degrees K and W/m^2. Per Bode, the input and output must be expressed in either the same units or be expressed in units that are strictly linearly related to each other (for example, voltage in and current out which are linear per Ohms Law).

          To be consistent with Bode, each W/m^2 of solar input must result in 1.6 W/m^2 of surface emissions, including the next one. The consensus claim that the next W/m^2 of forcing will result in 4.3 W/m^2 of surface emissions is so incredibly wrong that it’s beyond belief that they could be so ignorant about the analysis they claim supports their position, especially when they are trying to use this to extort trillions of dollars from the developed world.

    • Percy Jackson

      I have to agree with Pat that your did not apparently understand the presentation in part by not following it, or because you were too anxious to find something wrong. I write that because you have mis-quoted him several times in such a short post.

      The effect of CO2 on the global temperature is quite small. Increasing it also has a small effect which can easily be calculated using standard physics.

      The only error I can spot in the presentation is that he compares, as do many others, the temperature of the atmosphere with GHG’to a planet with no atmosphere at all and attributes all the difference to the presence of GHG’s. The more suitable comparison, which will lead to some interesting changes in the calculated equilibrium climate sensitivity, is to compare a planet with an atmosphere, with and without GHG’s.

      The 255 K might be correct for the no-atmosphere planet, and I am sure it is, but a planet with an atmosphere but no GHG’s would be heated by contact with the surface and be quite hot, certainly over 100 C (>373 K). Adding CO2 to such an atmosphere, as Lindzen points out, would add the ability to radiate heat into space and the atmosphere would cool rapidly as the concentration rose.

      Adding water vapour would do the same thing as it is a GHG.

      At present adding more water vapour and or CO2 will increase global temperatures because we have passed the inflection point after cooling dramatically.

      While the atmosphere does hold a considerable amount of water, your objections don’t.

      • Crispin,
        That is just nonsense. There is no way adding an atmosphere with no GHGs to a planet would
        warm the temperature by over 100 degrees. What would happen would be almost precisely nothing. The surface would warm by the sun and re-radiate in the infrared but since the atmosphere is transparent the radiation would pass straight through and would not heat up the atmosphere.
        Contact between the surface and atmosphere could not warm it more than the surface temperature
        itself. If the air temperature was 100K above the surface temperature it would warm the surface which would radiate that energy away and the atmosphere would cool rapidly.

        There is also no way adding more greenhouse gases will result in cooling not warming.

        • In the tropics, the surface temperature can reach well above 100C. This has been demonstrated by frying an egg on a ship’s steel deck. (I presume the deck was decently cleaned first so that the egg was later eaten.)

          The atmosphere immediately adjacent to the earth’s heated surface is heated by contact, and it is noteworthy that when you have fried your egg on the steel deck, the air above is at a comfortable temperature for humans – ie, it is far colder than the deck. Try walking on the deck in bare feet (OUCH!) – but you can comfortably exist if not in contact with the deck.

          The air next to the deck has been heated so it expands, and it is then more buoyant than the air above, and rises. taking its heat with it. BUT, as it goes up, there is less mass of the atmosphere above it tp squash it, so it expands. In this case, there is no added heat, so as it expands it cools. All same when your doctor treats a seborrheic keratose with liquid nitrogen, it evaporates, and in doing so cools from room temperature in the can, and then expands, cooling further, going back down close to its boiling point of -198C. This ‘kills’ the keratose, and after a bit (several days) drops off or is rubbed off when washing.

          If the air is dry, it cools at the “dry adiabatic lapse rate” 3C per 1000 ft . If waterlogged, ie, humid, very quickly the air become saturated, and the vapour condenses. In doing so it releases its latent heat, which reduces the rate at which the parcel of air cools. It then cools at the “moist or saturated lapse rate” of.about 1.5C per 1000 ft.

          This is valid for any planet with a decent atmosphere. So on Venus, the little sunlight that gets through the clouds heats the surface, and since there is almost no water vapour in the atmosphere, it has a lapse rate of 3C per 1000 ft . Apparently measurements have shown that when the atmospheric pressure some miles or so high have reached the earth’s atmospheric pressure if 1013.4 mb, the temperature is then about the same as that of the earth at sea level. Thinking the reverse, as the Venusian air descends it is compressed, and the temperature rises. Think your bicycle pump – you compress the air and it becomes hot. On being compressed to 92 bar, the atmospheric temperature is about 462C. No evidence of greenhouse, runaway or not!

        • Percy J

          Your definition of nonsense and mine are different.

          Dudley has provided a pretty good explanation. Mine is brief: the atmospheric temperature is the combination of direct (convective) heat transfer (look it up) and radiative heating from radiation components (IR heating).

          The climate models all calculate, as you have by implication, the radiative component which in the absence of GHG’s is nil. However removing the radiative gases doubles the direct heating power reaching the surface from 168 to 336 W/m^2 and all explanations of GHG heating omit this component. I do not know why.

          The fact that you have no experience with this observation is because till now, you have only heard the comparison of the temperature of the atmosphere with GHG’s with the surface temperature of a planet with no atmosphere – a completely inappropriate comparison when claiming to describe the heating effect of GHG’s. Removing GHG’s doesn’t remove the rest of the atmosphere.

          Without GHG’s an atmosphere cannot cool, except against the surface, and only if that surface is cooler than the air. Thermal equilibrium would be attained at a temperature somewhere between 70 and 150 – fa-ar above its present value.

          • Sorry but no, Percy is right. Atmosphere will warm due to conduction and where it does absorb solar, but radiated emission will work faster than conduction. Without resistance to radiated emission we would not have the same surface temperature as we do when greenhouse gases are present.

    • @Percy Jackson.

      Wrong.

      Lindzen’s ‘implausible conjecture’ is – as clearly developed and stated in his lecture..

      ‘The climate, a complex multifactor system, can be summarized in just one variable, the globally averaged tempera- ture change, and is primarily controlled by the 1-2% perturbation in the energy budget due to a single variable – carbon dioxide – among many variables of comparable importance’

      Which makes a lot of sense.

      I was lucky enough to be there as it was delivered.

      It was a great lecture at the time. And worth careful reading by those attempting to criticise it. Mr Jackson should (re) read the whole discussion under ‘The Climate System’ before doing so.

    • Percy insists on blathering:

      Nowhere does he produce any evidence against CO2 induced global warming but rather he just
      calls it “an implausible conjecture”

      Untrue. First of all, he says that CO2 does warm the earth. He even provides the approximate calculations for first order effects. Second, it is clear from reading the article that what he refers to as implausible are politicians’ claims that IPCC attribution is “tantamount to unambiguous proof of coming disaster.

      It isn’t. Even the IPCC doesn’t make the claim that climate change will be a bigger impact on society than (for example) lifestyle changes. In fact, the IPCC is quite clear that almost everything they measure across a variety of industries will not only have a bigger impact, but a MUCH bigger impact.

      You can fool a lot of people Percy, by claiming to know what the IPCC says and telling the rest of us what it means. But some of us bothered to read it for ourselves.

      Live by your quotes, die by your quotes.
      Live by the IPCC, die by the IPCC

    • a simple 1D model of the atmosphere including the correct emission and absorption lines will produce the greenhouse effect and gives a surface temperature of about 288K

      If you have such a restricted and simplistic model and it produces just the right result, you can be pretty sure it has been constructed so as to give the right result. I can tell you now, without examining it, that it contains estimated “parameters” and assumptions to represent certain factors which are NOT part of the “basic physics” radiative model.

    • Percy said ‘Lindzen’s entire argument appears to be that because he doesn’t believe in something it can’t be true. Nowhere does he produce any evidence against CO2 induced global warming but rather he just calls it “an implausible conjecture”.’

      Well he has shown that the feedback for the warming we have had, natural or anthropogenic, is most probably negative. Thus falsifying the polititical established UNFCCC claim of CAGW.
      What else can falsify UNFCCC?

    • Percy Plonker: I just had a look at the link you provide for the “1D model” and searched for 288

      The observed global mean surface temperature is To = 288 K, corresponding to f = 0.77 in equation (7.16) . We can thus reproduce the observed surface temperature by assuming that the atmospheric layer absorbs 77% of terrestrial radiation. This result is not inconsistent with the data in Figure 7-11 ; better comparison would require a wavelength-dependent calculation. By substituting To = 288 K into (7.14) we obtain T1 = 241 K for the temperature of the atmospheric layer, which is roughly the observed temperature at the scale height H = 7 km of the atmosphere ( Figure 2-2 ).

      So they are NOT presenting a 1D model which exactly produces the observed surface temperature. You are not even capable of reading what looks like freshman year , climate 101 course notes, and understanding what you read.

    • Yes, Percy, he was talking about you. Thanks for playing the part.

      You seem to have missed the point that a CO2 doubling (NB we have not reached that yet) being a 2% perturbation which can easily be offset by other 2% variations in the chaotic system, or the fact that the evidence shows a low ECS, so it really doesn’t matter.

    • Percy Jackson – October 9, 2018 at 6:22 pm

      Lindzen’s entire argument appears to be that because he doesn’t believe in something it can’t be true. Nowhere does he produce any evidence against CO2 induced global warming but rather he just calls it “an implausible conjecture”. Furthermore he appears to get the physics of the greenhouse effect wrong. …….. and YADA, ….. YADA, …… YADA

      Percy J, it is quite obvious to me that Dr. Richard Lindzen was specifically thinking about people such as you when he penned this commentary, to wit:

      Excerpted from above published commentary:

      What is it about our elites that makes them so vulnerable, and what is it about many of our scientists that leads them to promote such foolishness? The answers cannot be very flattering to either. Let us consider the ‘vulnerable’ elites first.

      They have been educated in a system where success has been predicated on their ability to please their professors. In other words, they have been conditioned to rationalize anything.

      [snip]

      The narrative is trivial enough for the elite to finally think that they ‘understand’ science.

    • I believe Prof. Lindzen is stating that the pressure gradient creates a thermal gradient per the ideal gas law. In other words, a rising gas will experience cooling, not generate net cooling.

      He further states that the presence of greenhouse gases (of which water vapor is most dominant) are what causes earth’s surface to be 13K higher than the 255K equilibrium temperature at the top of the atmosphere. Without greenhouse gases, the surface temperature would be 255K. With greenhouse gases and no convection, the surface temperature would be greater than 288.

      As for CO2 causing warming, the issue is whether there is any validation of its causing current or future Catastrophic AGW. Without the IPCC-assumed positive feedback, not sure catastrophe is in the cards. IMHO, evidence to date doesn’t merit costs associated with curtailing use of fossil fuels.

      • Doug,

        The surface is 288K which is 33K warmer than 255K. However, without GHG’s, liquid and solid water, the albedo would be the same as the Moon at about 0.1 and the surface temperature would be about 271K and not 255K, so the 33K of warming comes with 16K of cooling for a NET warming of 17K. In other words, the 33K of warming can only exist in the presence of 16K of cooling. The IPCC’s definition of forcing is after the effects of albedo and obfuscates this requirement. They fail to understand that 2/3 or the albedo is the planets response to solar forcing and can’t be separated from the warming by GHG’s and clouds (BTW, energy returned to the surface by clouds is the larger contributor to a warmer surface).

        Convection is irrelevant to the energy balance and the sensitivity. Its only effect is to redistribute the energy stored by the atmosphere. The surface does not loose energy to space by convection, but only by radiation. Convection is a property of matter and matter can only leave the planet when accelerated to the escape velocity. Conflating the energy transported by photons with the energy transported by matter relative to the energy balance and the resulting sensitivity is another serious error made by the consensus (Trenberth perpetuates this error).

        While water lifted into the atmosphere can radiate energy into space, to be in LTE, that water must be absorbing the same amount that it’s emitting or else it would cool or warm without bound. Note that other than the liquid and solid water in the clouds, the only stuff in the atmosphere that can radiate photons into space are the GHG’s since N2, O2 and Ar are completely opaque to LWIR photons.

        • >>
          . . . N2, O2 and Ar are completely opaque to LWIR photons.
          <<

          I thought that GHG’s are somewhat opaque to LWIR photons, and N2, O2, and Ar are completely transparent to LWIR.

          You learn something new every day.

          >>
          Note that other than the liquid and solid water in the clouds . . . .
          <<

          I guess dust in the atmosphere has zero radiating properties?

          Jim

          • Jim,

            Yes, I noticed that and I meant completely transparent (coffee hadn’t kicked in yet and we can’t edit comments).

            The primary constituents in the atmosphere that radiate LWIR photons are the liquid and solid water in the clouds and the GHG’s. The N2, O2 and Ar are just spectators to the radiant balance and the subsequent sensitivity.

            Dust is a second order effect and only plays a significant role after large eruptions or impact events, neither of which are relevant to the current climate or the nominal sensitivity. The more important property of aerosols is reflection, not absorption and re-emission, although neither affects the sensitivity except to the extent that they effect the temperature where the sensitivity is proportional to 1/T^3.

            The consensus ignores this first principles constraint on the ECS. I understand why this is so, because if they acknowledge the immutable 1/T^3 dependence of the sensitivity on temperature, their entire belief system would collapse. Of course, this is far from a legitimate reason to ignore the physics.

          • co2isnotevil – October 10, 2018 at 11:19 am

            The primary constituents in the atmosphere that radiate LWIR photons are the liquid and solid water in the clouds and the GHG’s. The N2, O2 and Ar are just spectators to the radiant balance and the subsequent sensitivity.

            Well now, ….. not exactly, …… not exactly just spectators, ….. now are they?

            The following commentary might “learn ya” why “not exactly”, to wit:

            Solar irradiance warms/heats the surface of the earth. All atmospheric gasses (N2, O2, Ar and the GHG’s) that come in contact with said surface absorbs some of its thermal energy via conduction. All said atmospheric gasses (N2, O2, Ar and the GHG’s) will, if they make contact with one another, will transfer said thermal energy between one another with the energy “flow” always to the cooler one.

            The surface also radiates some of that thermal energy as LWIR which may or may not be absorbed by GHG’s that are resident in the atmosphere. Said GHG’s do not “trap” the LWIR that they absorb, but will almost immediately begin re-radiating it in all directions, ….. laterally or horizontally, downward toward the surface and upwards towards outer space.

            The N2, O2 and Ar are not radiators of LWIR, …… but they are conductors of thermal energy via “collisions” among themselves and with the GHG’s …… and then said GHG’s can radiate that absorbed energy as LWIR, …… right?

            If one measures the air temperature then they are measuring the average temperature of all the air molecules within close vicinity of said thermometer.

          • Samuel,

            Relative to the average emissions (equivalent average temperature) and the sensitivity of those emissions to forcing, O2 and N2 have no NET effect, with or without GHG’s and water. The only role they have is to moderate highs and lows. Whether or not NET kinetic energy is transferred to a water droplet which then radiates, the O2 and N2 have no say with what the radiant balance must be and this is regardless of any other possible role they might have in manifesting the instantaneous state. Only COE dictates what the balance must be.

            If a world without an atmosphere receives 240 W/m^2 from the Sun, the AVERAGE surface emissions will be 240 W/m^2 corresponding to an EQUIVALENT average temperature of 255K. If you add an atmosphere containing only N2 and O2 in the same concentrations as Earth, the average emissions and its EQUIVALENT temperature will be unchanged as N2 and O2 return no RADIANT energy to the surface as GHG’s and clouds do.

            Conduction within an atmosphere containing only N2 and O2 will have no effect on the radiation passing from space to the surface or from the surface to space, none of which is intercepted by the atmosphere. The steady state temperature profile of the atmosphere
            will start at the radiantly determined surface temperature and decrease with a lapse rate. The energy maintaining this kinetic temperature profile per gravity, as distinct from the radiant temperature profile which goes as 1/r^2, is distributed by collisions (conduction) and the energy originates from the surface. A misunderstanding seems to be arising by the inappropriate conflation of the energy transported by photons and the energy transported by matter relative to the energy balance and the sensitivity. I blame Trenberth for introducing this unnecessary level of obfuscation.

            One more point is that to the extent a CO2 molecule converts translational kinetic energy into an emitted photon or visa-versa, in LTE, it must do so in equal and opposite amounts. In practice, only small amounts of energy in and out of rotational states can be transferred, as the state energy of the higher energy lines is too large to be transferred all at once at the nominal energy levels found in the atmosphere. The fine structure on either side of the primary lines is evidence for the roughly symmetric bidirectional transfer of energy between vibrational and rotational states.

          • co2isnotevil – October 11, 2018 at 3:33 pm

            Samuel,

            Relative to the average emissions (equivalent average temperature) and the sensitivity of those emissions to forcing, O2 and N2 have no NET effect, with or without GHG’s and water. The only role they have is to moderate highs and lows.

            [snip]

            If a world without an atmosphere receives 240 W/m^2 from the Sun, the AVERAGE surface emissions will be 240 W/m^2 corresponding to an EQUIVALENT average temperature of 255K. If you add an atmosphere containing only N2 and O2 in the same concentrations as Earth, the average emissions and its EQUIVALENT temperature will be unchanged as N2 and O2 return no RADIANT energy to the surface as GHG’s and clouds do”.

            co2isnotevil, you did a super great job at trying to CYA by specifically citing all of that CAPITALIZED words such as average, equivalent, radiant, ….. plus all your explanations of trivial facts that are immaterial to you statement in question, which was, to wit:

            The N2, O2 and Ar are just spectators to the radiant balance and the subsequent sensitivity

            And the very same statement that you yourself contradicted via your above quoted statement of, to wit:

            The only role they (N2, O2, Ar) have is to moderate highs and lows”.

            co2isnotevil, ……. “quit blowing smoke” ……in my direction, cause I am damn sure that you understand the literal fact that the N2 and O2 in earth’s atmosphere is responsible for transporting tremendous amounts of thermal (heat) energy between the earth’s surface and the earth’s atmosphere, …… and between most everything else those molecules come in contact with ….. including us humans. Iffen you are cold, a warm breeze feels great. Iffen you are too warm, a cool breeze also feels great. And I wasn‘t referring to “evaporative” cooling.

            But iffen you persist in getting “hung up” on evaporative cooling via H2O vapor, …… then explain to me the science associated with ….. blowing on a bite of hot food to cool it down enough to eat it.

            I am persnickety when science is involved, ….. and given the fact that there are thousands of people that read these forums, I do not believe that they should be reading things that are not quite true about the science of the natural world.

            Cheers

          • Samuel,
            Moderating highs and lows has nothing to do with the average and the average is all that matters relative to change. You need to pay attention to the capitalized words, as those seem to be the ones you don’t grasp the implications of. Also, its average emissions that are conserved and not average temperatures. The only average temperature that’s relevant to the balance and the sensitivity is the EQUIVALENT temperature of the average radiant emissions.

            The point you’re failing to understand is that while O2 and N2 certainly do transport energy around the atmosphere and this supplies the energy required to adapt to the matter in the atmosphere to the requirements of a lapse rate, they have absolutely nothing to do with the energy balance and the sensitivity. They are only involved with redistributing energy within the atmosphere and not with creating new energy, although many alarmists and those on the left can’t distinguish between redistributing wealth and creating wealth either.

            The GHG effect and the cloud effect do affect the balance, as both are radiant effects, but non radiant effects have no influence on the radiant balance. Again, I blame Trenberth for this unnecessary level of obfuscation, Only photons arrive at the planet, only photons can add new heat to the surface, only photons can leave the planet and the data confirms everything I’m saying in unambiguous terms.

          • co2isnotevil – October 12, 2018 at 8:34 am

            Samuel,

            Moderating highs and lows has nothing to do with the average and the average is all that matters relative to change. Also, its average emissions that are conserved and not average temperatures. The only average temperature that’s relevant to the balance and the sensitivity is the EQUIVALENT temperature of the average radiant emissions.

            co2isnotevil, iffen you are thinking that you are impressing me with all your gobbley-gook learned knowledge about “averages” then you are either utterly delusional or a BS’ing phony ….. and thus your “thinking” is 200% wrong.

            All of those “average(s)” you spoke of above are abstract numbers which have no PHYSICAL QUANTATIVE value(s) ……. and thus their only “value” is: 1) – to cite as “fact” when composing “tripe n’ piffle” agitprop/BS to impress and convince the learning disable, the gullible and/or the miseducated; ….. and 2) – “reference information” about a process that occurred in the past, ….. and most probably will NEVER be repeated again.

            In other words, ….. the calculated “average” of a number set …. is akin to the front page of yesterday’s newspaper.

            co2isnotevil, for your reading n’ studying n’ learning pleasure, to wit:

            An average is a made up number; defined in that branch of mathematics called statistical mathematics.

            Since it is NOT a real number that can be observed or measured, but can only be calculated after the fact, it is self evident, that an average can have no effect on any physical system, including the climate (and/or the weather).

            Averages cannot be determined until after everything has already happened; which is too late to do anything about it.

            October 12, 2018 at 8:34 am

            You need to pay attention to the capitalized words, as those seem to be the ones you don’t grasp the implications of.

            co2isnotevil, ….. I shur did “grasp the implications” of the words in question ….. and I dun told you the reason you posted those “capitalized” words, ….. so read it again, to wit:

            co2isnotevil, you did a super great job at trying to CYA by specifically citing all of those CAPITALIZED words

            co2isnotevil, ….. given the fact that you seem to truly believe that the calculating of “averages” are simply wonderful, great, important and generate actual factual information, ….. why is it that you have never ever been calculating …… the monthly average “balance” of the monies in your bank’s Checking Account?

            So, enough of your silly commentary.

            Cheers

      • Doug Ward October 10, 2018 at 9:57 am

        a rising gas will experience cooling, not generate net cooling.

        Aw geeze, and here I have been thinking that exhaust fans mounted in range hoods, ceilings and roofs do a fine job of generating net cooling via their evacuating the warm/hot air from the area beneath where installed.

        Doug, be more careful how you apply the term “net cooling”. An extremely cool/cold gas “rising” into a locale of warm/hot gas …… will in fact generate a net cooling of the combined gasses. Think of ACs.

        • Isn’t it true that rising air cools, and the cooling reduces net temperature? (Though not net heat, as I now understand from c2isnotevil’s coomments.)

          My comment was in response to Mr. Jackson’s:
          ‘He also states that “convection causes temperature to decrease with heights which is incorrect.’

          Mr. Jackson interpreted the word temperature to mean atmospheric temperature, while I believe Prof. Lindzen means that of the convecting air that cools as it rises, even though it also warms the cooler air through which it rises.

    • The point of the matter is that Prof Lindzen doesn’t need to prove it. You are the one making the assertion that it happens. YOU need to prove your hypothesis. Otherwise the null hypothesis is in affect

      • The CAGW hypothesis (an ECS between 0.4K and 1.2K per W/m^2) can be falsified in many ways which is sufficient disproof. Given this, there is no possible way to prove the CAGW hypothesis as it is otherwise proven to be unconditionally false.

    • Percy,

      I’ll plow this plowed ground and beat this dead horse yet some more. Maybe somebody will step up and ‘splain scientifically how/why I’ve got it wrong – or not.

      Radiative Green House Effect theory (TFK_bams09):

      1) 288 K – 255 K = 33 C warmer with atmosphere, RGHE’s only reason to even exist – rubbish. (simple observation & Nikolov & Kramm)
      But how, exactly is that supposed to work?

      2) There is a 333 W/m^2 up/down/”back” energy loop consisting of the 0.04% GHG’s that absorbs/”traps”/re-emits per QED simultaneously warming BOTH the atmosphere and the surface. – Good trick, too bad it’s not real, thermodynamic nonsense.
      And where does this magical GHG energy loop first get that energy?

      3) From the 16 C/289 K/396 W/m^2 S-B 1.0 ε ideal theoretical BB radiation upwelling from the surface. – which due to the non-radiative heat transfer participation of the atmospheric molecules is simply not possible.

      No BB upwelling & no GHG energy loop & no 33 C warmer means no RGHE theory & no CO2 warming & no man caused climate change.

      Got science? Bring it!!

      Nick Schroeder, BSME CU ‘78, CO PE 22774

      Experiments in the classical style:
      https://principia-scientific.org/debunking-the-greenhouse-gas-theory-with-a-boiling-water-pot/

    • Dear Percy,

      You should read more than just this speech by Lindzen. He has published and presented so much about the subject. This speech is a summary of what he stands for. He has shown beyond any doubt that CO2 is not a dangerous greenhouse gas, because he has shown that the positive feedback the alarmist need for their alarm is unjust.

      For example, look up this presentation: (I have copied 3 slides here)

      Here are two statements that are completely agreed on by the IPCC. It is crucial to be aware of their implications.
      1. A doubling of CO2, by itself, contributes only about 1C to greenhouse warming. All models project more warming, because, within models, there are positive feedbacks from water vapor and clouds, and these feedbacks are considered by the IPCC to be uncertain.
      2. If one assumes all warming over the past century is due to anthropogenic greenhouse forcing, then the derived sensitivity of the climate to a doubling of CO2 is less than 1C. The higher sensitivity of existing models is made consistent with observed warming by invoking unknown additional negative forcings from aerosols and solar variability as arbitrary adjustments.
      Given the above, the notion that alarming warming is ‘settled science’ should be offensive to any sentient individual, though to be sure, the above is hardly emphasized by the IPCC.

      We see that all the models are characterized by positive feedback factors (associated with amplifying the effect of changes in CO2), while the satellite data implies that the feedback should be negative. Similar results are being obtained by Roy Spencer.
      This is not simply a technical matter. Without positive feedbacks, doubling CO2only produces 1C warming. Only with positive feedbacks from water vapor and clouds does one get the large warmings that are associated with alarm. What the satellite data seems to show is that these positive feedbacks are model artifacts.
      This becomes clearer when we relate feedbacks to climate sensitivity (ie the warming associated with a doubling of CO2).

      Discussion of other progress in science can also be discussed if there is any interest. Our recent work on the early faint sun may prove particularly important. 2.5 billion years ago, when the sun was 20% less bright (compared to the 2% change in the radiative budget associated with doubling CO2), evidence suggests that the oceans were unfrozen and the temperature was not very different from today’s. No greenhouse gas solution has worked, but a negative cloud feedback does.
      You now have some idea of why I think that there won’t be much warming due to CO2, and without significant global warming, it is impossible to tie catastrophes to such warming. Even with significant warming it would have been extremely difficult to make this connection.

      Source:

      Global Warming: How to approach the science.
      Richard S. Lindzen
      Program in Atmospheres, Oceans, and Climate
      Massachusetts Institute of Technology
      Testimony: House Subcommittee on Science and Technology hearing on A Rational Discussion of Climate Change: the Science, the Evidence, the Response
      November 17, 2010

    • Percy
      You are correct to point to convection since this is a massive flaw and omission in the AGW narrative. Lindzen is right – it is convection, its vertical component, and the adiabatic temperature/pressure change that accompanies it, that establishes the atmosphere’s temperature gradient and forms the basis of the “greenhouse” effect. Even if you miniaturise convection to an infinitesimal scale, it is still convection.

      As for actual greenhouses where vegetables are grown – how do they work? It is by their effect on convection. NOT by any radiative effect. This is a mistaken urban myth. So is CAGW.

    • Percy, convection as an awful lot to do with the greenhouse effect when determining the effect on surface temperatures. The comment “convection causes temperature to decrease with height” is a sloppy way of making his point I agree where eventually he comments “It is an interesting curiosity that had convection produced a uniform temperature, there wouldn’t be a greenhouse effect.”

      If the process of convection did not involve adiabatic cooling (work of expansion while rising) then there wouldn’t be a greenhouse effect. This is correct. Convection would simply carry absorbed radiation to higher altitude where it emits freely to space. Higher greenhouse gas concentrations limit surface radiation from escaping to space and effectively the 200W/m2 altitude is higher. This is how increased greenhouse gas concentrations increase surface temperature which is exactly what Lindzen said. The effect is 3.7W/m2 for doubling of CO2 which is not the controversial point.

  3. This is one of the clearest and most convincing descriptions of the catastrophe that our “elite” have created for us. Professor Lindzen has captured all the essential elements of this massive fraud. It should also be noted that in the last two decades the administration of MIT was thoroughly complicit in supporting this fraud. However, it is likely that this came about out of ignorance and not malice, as Snow might have expected. But one must wonder why this was so. Much of the ground breaking work was developed by Lindzen and his colleagues Lorenz and Leith. It would have been appropriate for the administration to at least consult with them prior to publicly embracing the “consensus”. Thank goodness MIT was a different sort of place prior to WWII when it employed Norbert Weiner and Charles Stark Draper.

    • … the catastrophe that our “elite” have created for us. …

      This is the hubris of the well educated. They imagine they can do things that are patently impossible.

      … Boston, with its “lab-coat and starched-shirt” economy and its “well-graduated” population of overconfident collegians. link

      In ‘Listen Liberal’, Thomas Frank shows us an elite who desperately want to believe in their intellectual superiority. They believe in experts and imagine that they are in the same league. They love complexity because embracing complexity proves that they are intellectually superior. It’s the nasty kind of superiority that once led to the guillotine for a bunch of superior aristocrats. Those modern superior folks should ruminate on that and they should interpret the election of Donald Trump as a mild rebuke. Things could get a whole lot worse.

    • “However, it is likely that this came about out of ignorance and not malice, as Snow might have expected.”

      Oh, there is plenty of malice and self interest at the institutional level. Rent seeking researchers working for university corporations who skim 40% off the top for “admin overheads” is a system which guarantees financial corruption will (mis-)direct scientific research.

      Add to that the general left wing bias in acedemia and it should be pretty clear that the structure is heavily stacked against objective research.

      • Greg,

        It was neither malice nor ignorance that got the CAGW ball rolling, but the arrogant pride of Hansen who was called a lunatic during the Reagan and Bush administrations for his chicken little alarmism regarding CO2 emissions and he wanted to save face.

        This pride led to ignorance as Hansen first applied Bode’s feedback analysis to the climate. The ignorance turned into malice when a serious error in Hansen’s feedback paper was discovered and another paper had to be rushed into publication without sufficient peer review to ‘fix’ Hansen’s errors so that it could make it in time for AR1 in order to provide the theoretical support for the evil agenda of the UNFCCC.

        So here’s the progression of how climate science became so incredibly wrong:

        pride -> ignorance -> malice -> evil

        • The way alarmists rationalize the pride -> ignorance -> malice -> evil progression is that as a result of their ignorance, they consider the evil of extortion to be good by saving the planet.

          Pride coupled with ignorance makes them think that they can’t be wrong and the malice becomes justified as a means to an end. They fail to understand that extortion is always evil and that no means can justify this as an end, especially since they are irreconcilably wrong that this end will have anything to do with saving the planet, even if they were correct about the consequences of emitting CO2.

    • Robert
      Yes – the elites do not have the interests of the majority of people in mind at all. Only their own interests and that of their class. They are more than happy to throw the common person under a bus for their own enrichment.

      The elites are against Trump, and against Brexit, while the common people are for both. And as the film “Darkest Hour” reminds us, in WW2 the elites under Lord Halifax were in favour of making peace with Hit1er and Musso1ini since they foresaw that their interests would be protected and to hell with the masses. The Maurice Strongs and Al Gores of today feel likewise.

  4. Thus we will continue to benefit from the one thing that can be clearly attributed to elevated carbon dioxide: namely, its effective role as a plant fertilizer,

    It’s more than fertilizer, it is an essential component of photosynthesis. Fertilizer is usually thought of as required in small amounts. CO2 however, is part of the general equation:

               CO2 + H2O + Sunshine = Simple Sugar.

    Am I nit picking here? CO2 is an absolutely necessary constituent of the atmosphere. Life on Earth is carbon based where every carbon atom in the biosphere was once CO2 in the atmosphere. The importance of it’s presence cannot be stressed enough.

    Other than that, I read every word and thought the lecture was spot on. I will post links to it on other sites where the usual crowd will come up with excuses to piss on it.

    • Agreedt; CO2 is not a fertiliser; it’s the basis of all plant (and hence animal) life. This was the one point in the paper with which I disagreed. But Richard isn’t a biologist; perhaps he can be forgiven.

    • You are nitpicking indeed. There are times when words are not used in their literal or technical meaning. In this case, “plant fertilizer” merely alludes to the fact that it is a factor causing more growth of plants.

      We call this metaphor. You could look it up.

  5. This article should be published in the New York Times and Washington Post. Then it should be translated in French and German and published in leading European left-leaning papers. A guest editorial in The Economist would also be appreciated. And this is just for starters.

    • Way, way too long for the average reader on an Op-Ed.
      They’d lose it at paragraph 5.

      It would have to be a weekend (Sunday) edition special essay, where the reader can see up-front its a “two or three coffee reader.”

      • Agreed. The general idea is that such an illuminating exposé won’t do much for the climate realist point of view if it only circulates inside the skeptics sandbox. Preaching to the choir doesn’t earn converts.

  6. Simply brilliant but wasted. Very few will read it and even fewer in the media will highlight it.
    That’s gotta hurt the alarmists amongst us.
    Let’s see how many in main stream media are willing to even give him space. him.

  7. His final conclusion is, I sadly must admit, is correct:

    “False claims about 97% agreement will not spare us, but the willingness of scientists to keep mum is likely to much reduce trust in and support for science. Perhaps this won’t be such a bad thing after all – certainly as concerns ‘official’ science.

    Climate science’s on-going fraud against the public interest will deeply damage trust in all sciences as the hoax is exposed by Nature’s unwillingness to bend to man’s climate model dogma.

    This ultimately must be the lesson to the other science disciplines. Let one area of science behave badly for decades, as climate science is doing now, and to not censor their utterly bad science and even have complicit actors like at APS, AGU, NAS, and AAAS. and it will reflect on all of science.

    The shame will be on all.

  8. Excelente articulo sobre lo que es experto METEOROLOGÍA. Tampoco sabe que causa el Calentamiento Global.

  9. Sadly, I believe a Neolithic person would have had a better understanding of mechanical physics than most highly educated room and city dwellers of today; if they had thrown a rock, they would have had a better idea of where the rock would land.

  10. In 1942 at age 14 years I left school and got a job. This was normal back then, wth a War on the Govt. was not going to spend money on improving my knowledge.

    Looking back from my 92 nd yeaar I knew all of the essentials required back then, and in fact judging by what I observe today were a far higher level of education from todays 18 year olds.

    I had no difficulty in following the outline of the science involed in this article. Perhaps that t was becaause being of a curious nature if I did not know something I would look it up. We have had books for a long time and while using a pc . is a lot easier, books gave you the same answer.

    So why are most politicians so apparently ignorant about such simple science,. which basically it is. One wonders if they are that stupid, or do they use it as a fear factor. Vote for me and I will make everything good again ?

    Sorry for being so long winded, it was as with his previous writings a brilliant article, but as one reader commented i it will not get any coverage in the popular Media.

    mje.

  11. IPCC defined climate system as “The climate system consists of five major components, namely the atmosphere, the hydrosphere, the cryosphere, land surface, the biosphere. The climate system is continually changing due to the interactions between the components as well as external factors such as volcanic eruptions or solar variations and human-induced factors such as changes to the atmosphere and changes in land use. The atmosphere is not an isolated system. It interacts with other components of the Earth system — the Oceans, for example. But it is also in contact with the cryosphere (ice and snow), the biosphere (animals and plants), the pedosphere (soil) and the climate system whose individual components and processes are connected and influence each other in diverse ways.

    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

  12. Excellent and just in time. I have been using addresses by Dr Lindzen to educate a small group who are willing to consider the science behind the refutation of a number of alarmist declarations.

    Ignorance is as complex as knowledge. Filling in all the gaps will take heroic efforts.

  13. Well that’s confusing. Richard seems to be simultaneously acknowledging and dismissing the greenhouse effect.
    At least he is is no longer comparing climate science to eugenics.

    • He acknowledges the greenhouse effect and dismisses alarmist-concocted “narrative”.
      What’s the problem with that?
      Eugenics of the early twentieth century is an excellent paradigm for the current insanity.

    • The “narrative” is scientific peer-reviewed literature. It is not “alarmist”, it is what it is.

      • What does “peer-reviewed” mean anyway? 50% of the research published in American “peer-reviewed” science journals can’t pass reproducibility, which is basically just a check on the math. Less than 10% can be replicated by another researcher. And the “social sciences” are even worse. Does “peer-reviewed” mean anything more than “sounds good to me”?

        At this point I’m not sure anyone should believe anything produced by federally funded university PhDs.

      • “The “narrative” is scientific peer-reviewed literature.”

        The narrative is the unscientific Summary for Policymakers.”

  14. “In a similar way, the atmosphere–ocean system responds to steady forcing with its own modes of variation (which, admittedly, are often more complex than the modes of a violin string). Moreover, given the massive nature of the oceans, such variations can involve timescales of millennia rather than milliseconds. El Niño is a relatively short ex- ample, involving years, but most of these internal time variations are too long to even be identified in our relatively short instrumental record. Nature has numerous examples of autonomous variability, including the approximately 11-year sunspot cycle and the reversals of the Earth’s magnetic field every couple of hundred thousand years or so. In this respect, the climate system is no different from other natural systems.”

    This to me is the crux. I am a sedimentary geologist and an avid observer of ecology. I have seen wonderful expressions of cyclical change within outcrops. In one particular limestone there was no less than 7 major units around 200 mm thick, stacked one on top of another (no, this was not flaggy limestone which is layered due to diagenesis ) . Within each major unit there were sub-units – expressions of cyclical sea level change i.e. small cycles within large cycles repeating themselves in remarkably similar fashion. In geology we rank such cycles in “orders” running from 1 – 5 See: http://www.sepmstrata.org/page.aspx?pageid=275.

    But, I also base my skepticism on what I observe in nature: “ Nature has numerous examples of autonomous variability”

    So true. Nature is dependent on constantly being challenged and adaptation, which in turn is dependent on oscillations that overshoot due to lag times while negative feedbacks and/or natural forcings kick in to correct back in the opposite direction. The elephant in the room relates to negative feedbacks that are not documented in simplistic models. I am sure that there will be many yet to be identified e.g. how does enhanced vegetation growth effect climate?

    It is very clear in the rock record that earth has evolved an extremely robust regulating system and that this system is totally dependent on cyclical change. A rise in CO2 has little chance of overpowering such resilience.

    I read recently that alarmists find geologists and statisticians to be the most skeptical of all professions. Funny that 🙂

    Regards

    M

  15. “At the heart of this nonsense is the failure to distinguish weather from climate.”

    Weather is climate. Weather is a datum point and climate is the probability of that datum value being observed.

    Put another way, weather is a noun, a thing, an event measured by a particular instrument. Climate is a pronoun of weather, the probability of it occurring. Saying they are two different things is gibberish. It is a false dichotomy.

    • Saying they are two different things is gibberish.

      That’s not what he said. His reference was in regard to failing to distinguish between the two. In fact those are his words as quoted by you.

      Open Message to whoever sends these trolls to try and discredit articles. You need to spend more money and get a better quality of troll. The ones showing up these days are kinda easy. Could you toss us a challenge?

    • Donald K

      Is a thunderstorm a “climate event”? Is a hurricane a climate event? Is a King Tide a climate event? Is winter frost a climate event?

      What is the probability that there are no climate events at all? The “climate of Barbados” is not an event and doesn’t have a “probability”. Probability applies to weather events. Some events, like winter weather, are more probable than some others, like tornadoes, which have become more and more unlikely since 1976.

  16. The article is excellent as far as it goes, but there is a consideration fundamental to the debate which it doesn’t cover, and which none of the comments so far cover.

    What I am going to say next is rarely if ever said, but its the most important thing about the debate.

    The activists always conduct the argument on the basis of scientifc theories. So we see endless debates about whether the MWP existed, how warm it was, whether the Arctic is melting, whether the surface temperature record is valid, whether the ‘hot spot’ exists, what the value of the Climate Sensitivity parameter is….

    This approach conceals a hidden key assumption. The assumption is that if we can show warming, the policy approaches which the activist advocates will be justified. The approach is to assume there is no controversy or doubt about the measures, if one accepts the scientific theories describing the climate.

    It is then possible to use the debating tactic of accusing the opponents of policies as being science deniers.

    In fact however there are two stages to the debate, and this tactic obscures the second stage. That stage is to show that the chosen policies are effective and sensible in all their effects. The tactic obscures the fact that it is perfectly consistent to accept the most alarmist view of global warming, but still believe that the IPCC recommendations are not justified, because either they do not prevent it, or do more harm than good.

    Policies cannot be directly justified by theories about the climate. They have to be analysed and justified on their merits by showing that they work and that their consequences are better than alternatives.

    As an example to make this clear, take diet. We started out with a consensus that eating saturated fat caused cholesterol rises which in turn led to heart disease. Never mind that it was based on dodgy data, that was the consensus.

    Then without further analysis or justification, we moved to the policy of first substituting poly-unsaturated fat for saturated, and then moving to a low fat and high carb diet, the results of both of which have been disastrous.

    This happens because activists don’t want to debate their chosen remedies. They want to have furious emotional arguments about the scientific theories, as if that was all you needed in order to validate the remedies. And of course the tactic in the scientific public arena debate is the constant cries of motivated reasoning and denialism.

    However, all this is irrelevant. Whatever the outlook for temperature is, Paris was useless because it did not do what it said on the tin: it did not reduce emissions.

    Similarly biofuels as policy is not fit for purpose. It destroys habitats and by turning food into fuel promotes famine and hunger. And does not reduce emissions.

    Electric cars are also going nowhere because they are impractical without massive lifestyle changes and do not reduce emissions.

    Wind and solar electricity generation only attack that portion of emissions which generate electricity (25%) and have never been shown to reduce them by any significant proportion.

    The answer to Percy and those of a similar disposition is not to have endless arguments about the science. Rather, get Percy and similar to focus on what policies he is advocating, and then debate the merits of the policies.

    If you do this, you rapidly come to the conclusion that the activists actually have no serious proposals how to reduce emissions or what to do about the dangers they forecast, and generally are not prepared to contemplate the sort of grand actions they claim to believe are necessary.

    The great thing about the latest IPCC report is that it does seem to be saying clearly for the first time what they claim to believe is necessary in terms of carbon prices. The debate to have with Percy is simple: do you think we should, globally, tax gasoline at a level which will eliminate the internal combustion engine by 2030? What else do you think we would have to change to make this work? And what are the merits of your proposed program?

    At that point you will encounter a prolonged silence. What Percy wants to argue about is belief, not action.

    • Well put, Michel.

      In my view, to be even worthy of discussion, any policy that is proposed to “mitigate” any side-effects of CO2 emissions must have been accurately assessed in terms of costs and benefits. But this has not been done, and as far as I am aware is not being done. If such assessments are attempted at all, they are a mere charade. I seem to recall that, back in 2008, the uncertainties associated with the costs and benefits of the UK’s “climate change bill” were of the order of a factor of 12 on one side and a factor of 7 on the other. (There are similar uncertainties in calculations in other environmental areas such as pollution, by the way).

      Such numbers are useless for cost-benefit analysis. Having been trained as a mathematician, I know that even if you have both costs and benefits both to within 10%, when you subtract one from the other, if the numbers are close then even the sign of the difference can be uncertain. And knowing this, you need to demand a far higher degree of accuracy from the science that underlies the assessment. Which in this case, “climate science” being what it is, will probably never be feasible.

      I would also note the perversion of the precautionary principle, which governments and activists have cleverly carried out over the decades. From “look before you leap” to “create an impetus to take a decision notwithstanding scientific uncertainty about the nature and extent of the risk” is all but a complete inversion of the principle. They have also inverted the burden of proof, which now lies with the “hazard creator” rather than with the regulator. Gone is any idea of “innocent until proven guilty.”

      Besides all this, the policies being put forward or suggested to “mitigate” climate change virtually all mean more taxes for governments, more money for their corporate cronies, more power for activists and bureaucrats, and probably more jollies for their “scientist” pals. But they are “all pain and no gain” for ordinary people. I don’t think that is a coincidence. We’ve been being had all along; haven’t we?

    • Excellent comments Michel, but I would say that Percy has yet to reach terminal stupidity, so any further discussion of the science and policies with him would not affect any positive changes. Also, Percey’s statement about Einstein rejecting quantum mechanics is wrong (an unfortunate misunderstanding held by many), for Einstein merely maintained that it was incomplete.

    • The main skeptical cost/benefit argument is that nothing “we” (developed nations) do matters much given that developing nations are rushing into coal-based power plants with Chinese funding, dwarfing any cuts we make. All our cuts will do is defer reaching the alarmists’ 2100 temperature target by a couple of years.

  17. “It is an interesting curiosity that had convection produced a uniform temperature, there wouldn’t be a greenhouse effect. ” and for frequencies adsorbed by CO2, at today’s concentrations, the TOA is at a height were T starts to increase with height.
    The second law of thermodynamics tells you to expect that when the TOA rises to cooler altitudes that it needs to warm to what it was previously, if all else remains the same (purely theoretical), while the surface remains essentially the same and the temperature gradient is reduced instead of the surface warming.

  18. Leftists believe their CAGW religious cult can continue on indefinitely if they just keep repeating their dogma, irrespective of the rules of the Scientific Method, which have already disconfirmed the silly CAGW hypothesis.

    Leftists currently make absurd doom & gloom 10-30 ~100 year CAGW predictions, which always fail, and then make new ones—which also fail; rinse and repeat ad nauseam…

    Eventually, the prognosticators retire, and live hapilly ever after off taxpayer funded pensions, and take no responsibility for their evil deeds and agendas.

    At some point, real scientists outside the CAGW cult will become whistleblowers and end this stupid farce.

  19. That was excellent.
    The proof is that it is attacked by the scientifically illiterate for being heretical.

  20. Dr. Lindzen’s article is brilliantly concise and understandable by a reasonably educated reader. But he omits the substantial effects of biological and geological processes in his explanation of climate complexity. This seems to be a blind spot for physicists on both sides of the debate.

  21. Thanks for publishing this, it’s wonderful to remember that not everyone has been pulled into the vortex of hysterical marxism that has become the greatest scourge on humanity since the great plague.

  22. Lindzen start well by giving a good explanation of the basic principles in atmospheric physics, but then he goes on and say:

    …and although mankind’s CO2 contributions are small compared to the much larger but uncertain natural exchanges with both the oceans and the biosphere

    Although this is factual right, it is very misleading.

    The point is that mankind’s CO2 contributions are the dominating source compared to the much smaller natural exchanges between the fossil carbon resources and the combined system of non-fossil carbon in the atmosphere, oceans and the biosphere.

    The carbon exchange between the atmosphere and the biosphere is very large, but unimportant since the amount is growing both places due to human caused emissions in the atmosphere.

    The same can be said, although on a somewhat smaller scale, of the exchange between the atmosphere and the oceans.

    The relevant point here is that the level of CO2 in the atmosphere would not have risen to 35 percent above the highest level in at least 800 000 years without human emissions. Lindzen know this fact, but he circumvent it.

    /Jan

    • “The relevant point here is that the level of CO2 in the atmosphere would not have risen to 35 percent above the highest level in at least 800 000 years without human emissions.”

      Which is what makes this topic so fascinating. All the components of this grand “experiment” are in place. If there is a God (which I doubt) she would be chuckling her posterior off right now. If I were younger I would plan to open a chain of humble pie shops in about 30 years time.

      Anyone with any nous can clearly see that any amount of hand wringing won’t reduce human emissions to any effective extent within this time frame. One could organise protests in the countries most responsible for rise in emissions. That would be fun to watch 🙂

      Regards

      M

    • In order to make this argument you have to ignore the error bars in the sources and sinks which are rather larger than humankinds additions. It is merely postulated without proof that these sources and sinks would balance out if humans were absent hence any increase must be due to man: It’s an innumerate philosophy rather than a scientific idea.

      As for being the highest in 800,000 years they had to ignore a lot of conflicting data to come up with that; plant stomata studies, much of the actual scientific measurements and the Arctic ice core data. Only one Antarctic ice core plot supports the assertion and that was unscientifically spliced. Ironically the Antarctic is cooling overall while the rest of the planet is supposedly warming so if that lone plot was even reliable then it would be yet another indicator (amongst many) that anthropogenic CO2 has negligible effect.

      None of this really matters though. We have every right as a society to decide not to produce extra CO2 for whatever reason. But if the policy to achieve it increases poverty and starvation then some of the ‘do-gooders’ should at least stop and think a bit more. To pretend that some miracle energy source will replace fossil fuels if we just believe hard enough is delusional.

      • Ok, so the current atmospheric levels are shown to be the highest in 800,000 years. The evidence for this involves comparing the mush of proxy (ice core data) with the instrumental (Keeling) record.

        Does the ice core proxy reconstruction have the required resolution and accuracy for a valid comparison with the instrumental record?

  23. I believe that yearly courses in the definition of 0 and 1 are also in order. So much confusion seems to arise because so many people have lost touch with these two numbers.

    Some of the greatest villains are the scientists who love to suppress 0.

  24. A technical question.

    I know the nominal solar irradiance is something like 1367 watts/ sq. m.

    How do we get from there to his figure that the “earth receives about 340 watts per square meter from the sun”?

    • Take the area as a pie plate as the sun would see earth, then divide by the actual earth surface area, or in other words, divide by 4.

    • The idea goes like this: The Earth is a sphere. The area of a sphere is 4*pi*R^2. A sphere suspended in the radiation field of the Sun presents and captures a circular area of radiation. The area of circle is pi*R^2. If you spread the circular area over the spherical area you get the ratio of pi*R^2/4*pi*R^2 = 1/4. The surface of the Earth over twenty four hours receives (on average) one-quarter of the incoming radiation of the Sun or (1367 W/m^2)/4 = 342 W/m^2. That’s where the average number comes from.

      Jim

        • >>
          Nonsense.
          <<

          The question was where does the 340 W/m^2 come from, so it wasn’t complete nonsense.

          >>
          A sphere of r has 4 times the area as a disc of r – period.

          Spreading the ISR over the ToA is DUMB!!!!!
          <<

          That’s what is being done. Spreading incoming power flux over the globe isn’t as “dumb” as averaging temperatures, but it isn’t totally correct either.

          If the entire surface of the Earth received exactly 342 W/m^2, then you wouldn’t have polar ice caps and the tropics. In such a world you might not have hurricanes or other violent storms either.

          Jim

  25. “If the Earth had no atmosphere at all (but for purposes of argument still was reflecting 140 watts per square meter), it would have to radiate at a temperature of about 255K,”

    To be 33C or not to be 33C

    There is a popular fantasy that the earth is 33C warmer with an atmosphere than without due to the radiative greenhouse effect, RGHE and 0.04% atmospheric CO2.

    Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start – or so I hear.

    The 33C difference is between an alleged average surface temperature of 288K/15C and 255K/-18C, the alleged surface temperature without an atmosphere. Let’s take a closer look.

    Just which average surface temperature? The two extremes? (71C + -90C) / 2 = -10C? Or the average of all the real actual (adjusted, homogenized, corrupted) measurements 90% of which are in the US, Canada, Europe and Australia? What about the sea surface? Satellite data? Over thirty years?

    Per IPCC AR5 glossary the average land surface temperature is measured 1.5 meters above the ground, but 80% of the land (Africa, Siberia, South America, SE Asia) doesn’t even have reliable weather instrumentation or data.

    The average sea surface temperature is a combination of buckets and thermometers, engine cooling intakes, buoys, satellites, etc.

    This composite “global” surface average temperature, one number to rule them all, must represent: both lit and dark sides, both poles, oceans, deserts, jungles and a wide range of both land and sea surfaces. The uncertainty band must be YUGE!

    The 255K is a theoretical calculation using the S-B ideal BB temperature associated with the 240 W/m^2 radiative balance at the top of the – wait for it – atmosphere, i.e. 100 km.

    So, what would the earth be like without an atmosphere?

    The average solar constant is 1,368 W/m^2 with an S-B BB temperature of 394 K or 21 C higher than the boiling point of water under sea level atmospheric pressure, which would no longer exist. The oceans would boil away removing the giga-tons of pressure that keeps the molten core in place. The molten core would push through the floor flooding the surface with dark magma changing both emissivity and albedo. With no atmosphere a steady rain of meteorites would pulverize the surface to dust same as the moon. The earth would be much like the moon with a similar albedo (0.12) and large swings in surface temperature from lit to dark sides. No clouds, no vegetation, no snow, no ice a completely different albedo, certainly not the current 30%. No molecules mean no convection, advection, conduction, latent energy and surface absorption/radiation would be anybody’s guess. Whatever the conditions of the earth would be without an atmosphere, it is most certainly NOT 240 W/m^2 and 255 K.

    The alleged 33 C difference is between a) an average surface temperature composed of thousands of WAGs that must be +/- entire degrees and b) a theoretical temperature calculation 100 km away that cannot even be measured and c) all with an intact and fully functioning atmosphere.

    The surface of the earth is warm because the atmosphere provides an insulating blanket, a thermal resistance, no different from the insulation in the ceiling and walls of a house with the temperature differential determined per the equation Q = U * A * dT, simple to verify and demonstrate. (Explains why 250 km thick atmosphere of Venus with twice the irradiance heats surface bigly compared to earth.)

    A voltage difference is needed for current to flow through an electrical resistance.

    A pressure difference is needed for fluid to flow through a physical resistance.

    A temperature difference is needed for energy to flow, i.e. heat, through a thermal resistance.

    RGHE upwelling/downwelling/”back” radiation is a fictional anti-thermodynamic non-explanation for the “33C without an atmosphere” phenomenon that doesn’t actually exist.

      • While I find this thesis of “Atmospheric composition not a factor” to be kind of intriguing, I note that Richard Lindzen doesn’t seem to be saying this, not exactly anyway. For instance, in the headlined article above, Lindzen says,

        “– at this elevated level (around 5 km) that the temperature must be about 255K in order to balance incoming radiation. However, because convection causes temperature to decrease with height, the surface now has to actually be warmer than 255K. It turns out that it has to be about 288K (which is the average temperature of the Earth’s surface). This is what is known as the greenhouse effect…”

        So, before you can appeal to convection/temperature lapse rate to get the increase in temperature going down toward the surface, there has to be some way to estimate where the starting point higher up ought to be (to begin a lapse rate or “pressure and volume effects” based estimate for the surface temperature as such). First, estimate at what altitude and temp is the atmospheric heat radiating away, *then* figure how much hotter it’s getting further down, that’s pretty basic physics, right?

        What gets me about traditional greenhouse effect theorists is that very advanced or exaggerated positive feedback effects are *always* presupposed for any special gases assumed to be “non-condensing” (mainly “non-condensing” means CO2, but it could mean other things, depending on whether the “scientist” in question is concerned about cows belching or whatever). The great thing about Richard Lindzen is that, in my reading anyway, he has persistently refused to fall into this mode of assuming that CO2, etc. must cause everything else (i.e., cloud effects, water vapor related greenhouse blanketing, and so forth, with the causal assumptions then valided by models that naturally assume the very things the models are supposed to prove).

        Talking about planets, and the assumptions that “traditional theorists” have maintained, I just have to think of Carl Sagan. Whatever good things Sagan did in his lifetime, the narrative that he started about Venus being hot due mainly to ‘runaway greenhouse’ really was incredibly misleading! I have a sense that even really good hard-core skeptics like Lindzen sometimes play into this a bit, by characterizing the effects of pressure and convection as “part of the greenhouse effect”. I mean, we could read the Lindzen quote above, that way, right?

        Here is a suggestion for how to word things better: why not say that IR absorption effects (that is, “greenhouse” effects), establish a kind of “set point” for temperature at some radiating level in a planet’s atmosphere? Now, if it happens that this “set point” is relatively insensitive to the exact composition of the atmosphere, then Zeller and Nikolov’s thesis about the greenhouse effect being unimportant could easily be true, at least in any terms that reasonable people should pay any attention to. As an example of this, when someone drops a probe into planet Jupiter, the temperature gets hotter on the way down; at 90 atmospheres pressure, I’m pretty sure the temperature is comparable to the surface of Venus — and that’s on a planet over seven times farther from the Sun and one not known for a lot of CO2, at that.

  26. No one can be reasoned out of an incoherent world view if they didn’t arrive there through reason in the first place.

  27. This magisterial refutation of the pseudoscientific nonsense of AGW by Richard Lindzen brings much needed gravitas to an utterly shambolic and failed scientific field.

    It paints a picture of Richard Lindzen as the beleaguered headmaster of a school in which a sizeable portion of both students and teachers have indulged in an alcohol and drug fuelled destructive mutiny, have trashed the school premises and are riotously occupying a large part of it. A number of staff and students however remain distanced from this uprising, and are undecided as to whether to remain loyal to the school and its headmaster or to join the mutineers. Richard Lindzen as headmaster is trying patiently but sternly to talk sense to the mob and appeal to ideals of academic excellence and civilised decency that they once had. He exhibits heroic and patient optimism of human nature in the face of a display of the worst of humanity and in not inconsiderable personal danger to himself.

  28. The Age of Enlightenment intellectuals were more science literate than our elites today. I imagine the “two cultures” debating in a science salon.
    Al Gore
    James Hansen
    John Kerry
    Naomi Oreskes
    Christiana Figueres

    versus

    Benjamin Franklin
    Simon Laplace
    Leonhard Euler
    Emilie du Chatelet
    Mary Somerville

    Guess what culture is totally outclassed

  29. Regarding “the finding by both NOAA and the Danish Meteorological Institute that the ice mass of Greenland has actually been increasing.3”: I read what the link in Note 3 goes to. It says that the Greenland ice mass gain was for the year 2017, and it was ~44 gigatons. And that Greenland lost 3600 gigatons of ice from 2002-2016.

  30. At what height in the atmosphere is this water vapour[1:] condensed?
    How much heat is released by this condensation?
    What percentage of atmospheric CO2 is located below this condensation height?
    What part does atmospheric CO2 below this height play in the escape of this condensation heat to space?
    [1:] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_cycle
    Total annual evapotranspiration amounts to approximately 505,000 km3(121,000 cu mi) of water, 434,000 km3 (104,000 cu mi) of which evaporates from the oceans.[2] 86% of global evaporation occurs over the ocean.[4]

  31. The emission height rises, then with more radiative CO2 in the atmosphere.

    And the temperature at the raised emission height is lower – meaning less heat emission. And warming.

    Except – that the raised emission height also means an enlarged emission surface.

    Four pie arre squared and all that.

    Meaning more heat emission. And cooling.

    What if warming plus cooling equals nothing?

  32. I have three scientist friends in the field of industrial gases. All claim that current man-made global warming theory as based on false premises and facts and are willing to give their reasons.. Other “elite” friends believe the opposite but refuse to discuss the issue – saying the science is decided. “There are none so blind…………”

  33. WHY DOES EVERYONE IGNORE THE CONVECTION AND EVAPORATION?
    I extended my understanding of the hypothesis that global warming increases might be due to higher concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere after reading Dr. Lindzen’s excellent article by reading :-
    http://lasp.colorado.edu/~bagenal/3720/GoodyWalker/AtmosCh3sm.pdf

    It does seem that the science points to the fact that additional atmospheric CO2 will reflect certain CO2 wavelengths and cause warming at ground level all other things being equal, given that the atmospheric temperature at the top of the troposphere is a fixed 255K. The problem seems to be that the predicted warming does not seem to be happening. Maybe other things are not equal?

    That led me to wonder what the effect of H2O in the atmosphere might be on the hypothesis of greenhouse gas warming. This issue seems to be all but ignored in the mainstream discussion. A websearch on ‘greenhouse effect water vapour’ produces some interesting references. It seems that the theoreticians predict that humidity increases resulting from CO2 warming form a positive feedback that makes the warming greater by a factor of about two.

    My hypothesis is that there must be another mechanism that limits the rise in ground/sea level air temperatures, despite the increased IR opacity of higher CO2 and higher humidity levels. The same reference points the way :-
    http://lasp.colorado.edu/~bagenal/3720/GoodyWalker/AtmosCh3sm.pdf
    ‘Under certain circumstances convection can carry heat away from the ground more effectively than can radiation.’
    ‘At lower altitudes convection takes over from radiation as the most important heat transport process and the temperature profile becomes a straight line. The net effect of convection is to reduce the ground temperature by about 60K.’

    Without convection, which implies no evaporation, the calculated air temperature at ground/sea level rises to 333K(60C).
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lapse_rate
    ‘If radiation were the only way to transfer heat from the ground to space, the greenhouse effect of gases in the atmosphere would keep the ground at roughly 333 K’

    At this point it is worth stepping back and noting that H2O in the atmosphere can be in solid, liquid and vapour phases; the Hydrological Cycle describes this. Briefly, water evaporates from ground/sea level sources and rises as vapour until condensing to water droplets in clouds and then falls to ground/sea level as precipitation and the cycle repeats. The vapour forms a greenhouse gas and the water/vapour in the clouds reflect sunlight which affects the earth’s albedo.

    What is missing from the above description is what happens to the energy cycle within the Hydrological Cycle. Briefly, sunlight and atmospheric/water heat supplies energy to evaporate water at ground/sea level. That energy is carried upwards to the clouds. Inside the clouds the energy is released to form precipitation. Where does the released energy go? Higher and eventually into space.

    The transport of the energy of evaporation from ground/sea level to the clouds is not subject to the greenhouse gas effect because radiation is not involved. The air above the clouds is ‘bone dry’, so the released heat from the clouds does not have to pass through the greenhouse gas effect of moisture at higher levels. The heat of evaporation of water at ground/sea level gets almost a free ride to space as regards greenhouse gases.

    The last step of the argument is to note that transferring more heat to evaporation and reducing the radiation from ground/sea level will compensate for the increased IR opacity of the air below the clouds. The evaporation rate is increased by higher water temperatures:-
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atmospheric_thermodynamics
    the power generated by the Hadley regime has risen at an average rate of about 0.54 TW per yr; this reflects an increase in energy input to the system consistent with the observed trend in the tropical sea surface temperatures.
    [the convection and evaporation engine powers up!]

    Main articles: Clausius–Clapeyron relation and August-Roche-Magnus approximation
    The Clausius–Clapeyron relation shows how the water-holding capacity of the atmosphere increases by about 8% per Celsius increase in temperature. (It does not directly depend on other parameters like the pressure or density.) This water-holding capacity, or “equilibrium vapor pressure”, can be approximated using the August-Roche-Magnus formula

    The mechanism for switching from radiation to evaporation is higher water temperatures. This effect is illustrated by:-
    https://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/heat-loss-open-water-tanks-d_286.html
    Water temp (C) 32.2 37.8 43.3
    Evaporation Loss W/m^2 252 504 757
    Radiation Loss W/m^2 158 221 284
    Evap/Rad Ratio 0.627 0.438 0.375
    Roughly speaking, for an 11C water temperature rise, the evaporation rate trebles and the radiation loss doubles.

    The major controlling variable for the system is the tropical sea water temperature. Rising tropical sea temperatures switch the heat removal from radiation to evaporation. Evaporation bypasses the greenhouse gases. QED

    • Clouds are also net cooling effect so all else being equal additional cloud formation is a negative feedback. ‘Consensus’ argues the opposite, claiming a warmer atmosphere will form a greater mix of high or low altitude clouds (don’t remember which).

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