Sour milk, sourer grapes and the unnatural greenhouse effect

By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

I am most grateful to Bob Irvine, in a recent column here, for repeating a point that I have tried to make many times, to squeaks of futile protest from assorted busybodies and concern trolls: the total feedback response until 1850 should not, as at present, be allocated solely to the directly-forced reference warming from the naturally-occurring, noncondensing greenhouse gases.

It must be distributed in some fashion between that natural reference sensitivity, on the one hand, and, on the other, the emission temperature that would obtain at the Earth’s surface in the absence of any greenhouse gases.

As things now stand, official climatology describes the 32 K difference between the 255 K emission temperature and the 287 K observed global mean surface temperature in 1850 as the “natural greenhouse effect”.

It is assumed – see e.g. Lacis et al. (2010) – that a quarter of this 32 K, or 8 K, is natural reference sensitivity, while three-quarters, or 24 K, is natural feedback response.

Therefore, it is imagined that for every 1 K of reference sensitivity there will be 4 K final or equilibrium warming, or, to put it another way, that the closed-loop gain or system-gain factor is 4.

In that event, after feedback the reference sensitivity of just over 1 K to doubled CO2 concentration would become final warming of 4.1 K – and that, indeed, is the current mean midrange estimate in 21 sixth-generation models of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project:

clip_image002

How, then, should the “natural greenhouse effect” be apportioned? At present, climatology’s over-prediction of Charney sensitivity (equilibrium sensitivity to doubled CO2, the standard metric in global-warming studies) arises due to two mutually-reinforcing errors of logic and of physics.

First, the 255 K emission temperature is supposed to be the surface temperature without greenhouse gases, yet – bizarrely – climatology calculates it by assuming today’s albedo of 0.29, which largely comes from clouds, a greenhouse gas.

As far back as 1994, the redoubtable Professor Lindzen pointed out the illogic of this approach. He corrected it and found emission temperature to be 274 K. That fact reduces the “natural greenhouse effect” from 32 K to just 13 K, of which 8 K is natural reference sensitivity as before, leaving only 5 K as the total feedback response.

Climatology’s second mistake, first perpetrated by the accident-prone James Hansen at NASA in 1984, is to assume that the total feedback response is attributable solely to natural reference sensitivity.

Well, it isn’t. Elementary considerations establish that feedback responds not only to perturbations in temperature but also to the input signal itself, which, in the climate, is the emission temperature or some hefty part thereof.

In effect, puir wee Jaikie forgot the Sun was shining, and failed to recall the wise maxim that the feedback response that is sauce for the goose (natural reference sensitivity) is sauce for the gander (emission temperature).

At two-thirds of today’s 1363.5 W m–2 insolation, the entire tropics on an ice-ball Earth like the Jovian cryosatellite Europa, with albedo 0.62 (Veverka 1982; Pappalardo et al. 2009, Ashkenazy 2016) would be just above freezing, though global mean surface temperature would be less than 198 K.

Even under these conditions, some feedback response would be evident, but it would be small and will here be disregarded.

At four-fifths of today’s insolation, implying mean surface temperature of 207 K, the tropics and perhaps some of the subtropics would be ice-free, and feedbacks would be operating vigorously enough to produce a significant response.

Therefore, some 67 K of the 274 K corrected emission temperature would be capable of driving a temperature feedback response.

How, then, should the 5 K total feedback response be distributed between the 67 K active part of emission temperature and the 8 K natural reference sensitivity?

Illustratively, let us assign only 3 K feedback response to the 67 K active part of emission temperature and the remaining 2 K to the 8 K natural reference sensitivity.

In this example, the true natural greenhouse effect is not the 32 K that is currently imagined, but just 8 + 2, or 10 K. Therefore, the system-gain factor is not 32 / 8, or 4, as climatology profitably imagines, but only 10 / 8, or 1.25.

Accordingly, Charney sensitivity would not be 2.5 K, as Charney himself imagined in 1979, nor 3.35 K, as the CMIP5 models imagined in 2013, and certainly not the 4.05 K imagined by the CMIP6 models. It would be less than 1.3 K.

Ah, yes, said the physics professor from Düsseldorf who chaired a meeting at the local agricultural research station where I presented this strikingly elementary arithmetic at the weekend, but what about the possibility that unit feedback response may increase with temperature?

In the above example, the unit feedback response to the 67 K active part of emission temperature is 3 / 67, or 0.045. But the unit feedback response to the 8 K natural reference sensitivity is 2 / 8, or 0.25, which is 5.6 times greater.

There is no particular reason why the unit natural feedback response should be so many times greater than the unit feedback response to the sunshine. But even then there will be very little warming. The professor found this method satisfactory.

clip_image004

How rapidly does the ratio X of the unit natural feedback response to the natural feedback response to emission temperature increase as estimated Charney sensitivity increases?

The answer is shown in the graph. The curve of X against Charney sensitivity rises very rapidly if Lindzen’s estimate of emission temperature is correct. If, on the other hand, one takes the estimate of ~290 W m–2 solar forcing in Müller 2011 on the assumption that without clouds the albedo would halve to 0.145, the growth in X with Charney sensitivity is a little slower.

However, by the time one reaches 2 K Charney sensitivity – only two-thirds of the current models’ low-end projection – X has already risen to an unjustifiably high 17.

This rapid rise in X provides an incrementally more powerful constraint on Charney sensitivity: the more global warming one predicts, the self-evidently sillier the prediction becomes.

As to the maximum tenable value of X, far be it from me to prescribe it. However, given that it is here calculated after we have carefully removed the inactive part of emission temperature below 207 K, I submit that it cannot much exceed 5.

That means Charney sensitivity – and, a fortiori, the shorter-term transient climate response – cannot be anything like the egregiously overstated values on which scientifically illiterate governments worldwide are basing their heroically insane policies.

I end with an account of a maladroit and ultimately failed attempt by the malicious soi-disant “Greens” to have our meeting banned outright.

Together with the Social Democrats, the “ex”-Communist Leftist party and – to its eternal shame – the ruling once-Christian formerly-democratic party of the shady, East German Reichskanzlerin Angela Murky, the Reds (er, “Greens”) got in touch with the agricultural institute in Kleve and ordered it to cancel the meeting.

These thugs and bullies threatened the Institute that they would organize a mass demonstration so violent that even the placid herd of experimental cows at the Institute would be driven to yield sour milk. For the sake of the cows, said these passionate stewards of all things environmental, the meeting must be canceled.

However, Alternative für Deutschland, the center-right party that had invited me to speak, had anticipated the wannabe terrorists by tying down the institute with a written contract. When the institute tried to back out of the contract into which it had freely entered, the party went straight to court.

The court ordered the meeting to proceed, wryly commenting that the best way to protect the innocent cows was not to cancel the meeting but to make sure that any demonstration was peaceful.

In the end, just two disconsolate protesterettes from Fridays for Fascism (or some such title) turned up. Anyway, it was a Saturday. Their knowledge of what day of the week it was had proved to be no better than their knowledge of climatology. Mindful of the judge’s warning, the two brats protested silently. The cows chewed their cud unterrorized.

Two “Greens” attended the meeting and sat right at the front, twitching their egg-stained beards, muttering to each other and checking my references on their cellphones as I talked. As the very simple arithmetic that spells doom for the Thermageddon cult inexorably unfolded, they twitched and twittered and Tweeted less. They fell still and silent.

At the end, they said to the organizer of the event, who was sitting next to them, that I had made five logical errors in my presentation. “What errors?” he asked. Answer came there none.

“Why don’t you challenge Lord Monckton by asking him questions about his supposed errors?” Questions came there none. The two Trots slunk away dejected into the balmy late-October night. Good news for the planet was not good news for Them.

Often and often have my speaker-meetings been canceled as a result of criminal intimidation such as that which most of Germany’s political parties here saw fit to attempt. This is the first time the organizers have plucked up the courage to go to court to uphold freedom no less of speech than of contract.

In Germany, at last the worm is turning. While I was there, farmers demonstrated against the relentless attempts by the numbskulls in the Bundestag to destroy their industry in the name of Saving the Planet. Hint: The Planet was triumphantly Saved 2000 years ago and it doesn’t need to be Saved again.

At the regional elections in Thuringia, Alternative für Deutschland – founded only six years ago – took 25% of the vote, beating the shocked unchristian antidemocrats into third place. Ending the climate scam was AfD’s principal policy, ranked alongside its policy of allowing the voters to demand referenda on this and all matters on which the classe politique refuses to do what the electorate wants.

As for the “Greens”, they got barely 5% of the vote. Just about everyone is fed up with the cripplingly costly Energiewende, which has carpeted the once-beautiful valley of the Ruhr with solar panels and bird-bashing, bat-blending, bee-bothering windmills – 14th-century technology to fail to address a 21st-century non-problem.

The party is not going to take the intimidation from the goons in the other parties lying down. It is preparing a criminal complaint of intimidation against those who used threats of force, widely circulated in the regional news media, in the hope of either shutting down the meeting or frightening people into deciding not to come.

Despite the thugs and bullies and their poisonous attempts at intimidation, almost 100 brave souls attended.

Three cheers for the judge who was not cowed by the totalitarians. The climate Communists and Friday Fascists are no longer going to get a free ride. Stamping out free speech had cataclysmic global consequences a century ago. It is not going to be tolerated again.

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154 thoughts on “Sour milk, sourer grapes and the unnatural greenhouse effect

  1. not even wrong again

    (Your drive by comments are unproductive, try explaining WHY you have a problem with the article or a comment) SUNMOD

    • Steven Mosher,

      Your “not even wrong” is becoming an almost daily post, and I again point out that it is incorrect because almost everything you write IS WRONG.

      Richard

      • The thing I really like about the “not even wrong” response is their inability to provide any evidence to support their bald assertion.

        It’s the new form of alarmism’s “smarty pants” non-comment.

        It demonstrates, yet again, their unscientific capabilities.

        Mosher should have stayed in the navy. Then he’d have a strong excuse for his always being at sea on the questions of the scientific method

      • I think perhaps we’re miss-understanding Mosher’s “not even wrong” ‘s , it’s a double negative with the real meaning that he’s saying Christopher Monckton of Brenchley is right (aka correct). So either consciously or subconsciously Mosher is indicating his past bombast was wrong and he’s deeply embarrassed by that !!
        p.s. not sure if this is sarcasm or not ??

    • LOL.
      Mosh Pup trolls for the consensus. No reason.
      He points to place where the the massive junk of supercompter climate models gets it right and a simple model gets it wrong.
      Either put up or shut up Mosher.
      At least Nick Stokes has the intelligence, education, and experience to help us poor plebes. You Mosh … you’re just a hack troll otherwise.

      Joel,
      a biochemistry/biology PhD hack with BSCE
      #MAGA

      P.S. meanwhile your California is burning AND blacked-out, not in-spite of, but exactly because of Cal Democrat’s 30 years of enviro and energy policy there. So at what point do sane folks of Cal stop supporting those arsonist Pols?

    • My reading of the 5 to 7K warming expected by models to occur by the year 2100, we should have already experienced over 2K warming.

      Has this occurred? And if not, how can you state that Monckton is “not even wrong”?

      Please show your work.

    • Steven Mosher October 28, 2019 at 11:36 pm
      Then again Steven in regards to your views on climate change-
      “C’est pire qu’un crime, c’est une faute”

      michael

    • It must be so tiresome for man of your superior intelligence to lower yourself to interact with the fools here. Truly your humility and patience in pointing out the stupid is almost saint-like. Thank you for all you do, it is so helpful. /Sarc off.

    • Oddly enough, you’re accidentally correct.
      How could ANYONE know what the “global average temperature” in 1850 was to an accuracy of 1/10th of a degree.
      You’re all participating in a clown show…calculating the ‘number of angels who can dance on the head of a pin’. (being a literature major Steve, you’ll get this reference.)

      • In response to Mr Nelson, the error-bars on the HadCRUT4 temperature data for 1850 are about plus or minus a third of a degree. Of course, if one averages 21 models’ estimates of global warming in response to doubled CO2, one might express the mean to a greater precision than this.

    • You are right but it’s not CM’s fault. Things like Charney sensitivity, for instance, are an attempt to simplify something that appears to be intractably complex.

      Based on models, Dessler critiques Lewis and Curry. Then he ends with:

      … comes from climate model simulations; we have no way to observationally validate it, nor any theory to guide us … link

      That, to my mind, fits the definition of “not even wrong”. If it’s not falsifiable, it’s not even wrong.

      Climate science, as a whole, seems to be, to a distressing degree, not even wrong.

    • A few years ago, Mr. Mosher responded to a question I posted and as part of the answer he mentioned that the USCRN was on the rise. And I responded that the data will show what the data will show and it should be explained. I’m just a biologist, but I was taught how to analyze data AND not to run away from data that was contrary to what I believed. There’s a lot of running away from the USCRN by some folks because since inception the USCRN is flat to maybe a slight cooling. Despite rising CO2, the USCRN, the state of the art, purpose built, triple redundant, not subject to adjustments, climate monitoring system with first class station siting, is flat. Whether pro-AGW or skeptic, the USCRN must be explained as part of the justification for any stance in the subject. Don’t give me any guff about “it’s not the world”; explain the data.

      • Thanks JRF – but have you noticed how convoluted it is to access the graphical data function on the USCRN website? One must navigate a blizzard of climate-alarmist fluff until, at last, one can see proof of no increase in US territorial temperatures. Perhaps Mosher can opine on the contradictory USCRN data?

    • With no explanation offered, your answer cannot be a argued as right or wrong. Is that your purpose, to post a useless response nobody can refute?

      • You could show exactly how the USCRN is actually showing rising because of CO2 using data homogenization techniques. Homogenization seems to be able to raise low temperatures everywhere.

    • Most grateful to Mr Mosher for his continuing support. I am indeed not wrong and, therefore, by the logical principle that a proposition and its negative cannot coexist, I am right.

    • Considering it was warmer in Minoan, Roman and Medieval times, and that temps warmed up faster 1910-1940 than post 1980, and cooled from 1940-1980, regardless of CO2 levels – it’s likely CO2 has no net warming effect.

      It’s a shame though. As a nuclear engineer, I’d love for nukes to be back in fashion, and I was raised on dreams of solar power satellites, and I love watching the turbines nearby turning, but there’s nothing better for poverty eradication and human development than natural gas. Methane hydrates anyone?

  2. Monckton of Brenchley,

    Good stuff ! Thank you !

    And especial thanks and congratulations to the meeting organisers who took the bullies to court.

    Richard

    • We middle-class witterers witter on about global warming while there’s a couple of billion on a dollar and a half a day out there who have never heard of CO2. But my Laotian Hmong tribal boy cooking lunch on twigs and dung in the hut is going to get a Bottogas and a Chinese coal-fired power station. Hooray hooray hooray.

      • Coeur de Lion.

        Your (?) “Laotian Hmong tribal boy”. Really, yours?
        Do you traffic children in addition to exploiting them?

        I prefer the world’s poor be provided with the food, resources and energy they need to obtain freedom from poverty.

        Richard

        • Poor Richard-
          “…be provided with…” Do you not understand the basic concept of “consumption <= production"? "Obama's stash" ran out long ago.

        • “my” nephew reads this site on occasion. not often, as he is working and spending time with family.

          As long as MY nephew keeps working hard I will not traffic him. I have made this knowledge clear to the family … it also keeps MY aunts & uncles on their toes.

          MY neighbors aren’t as aware of my policies as they should be. Some of them are on thin ice.

          MY friends … well since they are friends they get a break.

          (Also, be sure to say what you mean. Provide the means, not the end, or you will be providing until all of your provisions are gone) …

    • Delighted that my old friend Richard Courtney is well enough to post here. He is quite right that the bully-boys were – for once – defeated by a courageous political party and an honest court.

  3. So what does Lord Monckton and others think of the recent talk in the USA by the Connollys?
    Millions of balloon flights over many decades don’t seem to have found much co2 warming.

      • Because this:
        “As things now stand, official climatology describes the 32 K difference between the 255 K emission temperature and the 287 K observed global mean surface temperature in 1850 as the “natural greenhouse effect”.”

        Is complete and udder nonsensical sophist BS.

        What is the area of a 10X10 square, 100. Now what is the surface area of a 10X10 lawn or forest canopy? It is MUCH higher than 100. They still haven’t seemed to grasp the concept that the Earth is not a flat and smooth plane.

        • ????
          There’s only so much light hitting the Earth, and topology only divides up what’s available.

          Are you inferring that the greater surface area means faster cooling?

          1850 comment well taken. Why 1850 climate scientists? Why not AD 1000 or 1400 BC, no coal use then. It’s inconvenient for them.

    • Climate models are a total failure to explain the balloon data. Which is why alarmists almost never mention that data set and why they keep trying to come up with some fancy adjustment like windspeed instead of temperature to go around the balloon data.

      Thank you so much for this link it was very educating.

    • In response to Neville, I am intrigued by the Connollys’ work and have met them to discuss it. Their result, if correct, would imply that emission temperature in the absence of greenhouse gases is higher than today’s 288 K. If they are right about this, their result is worthy of a Nobel Prize for Physics. Their analysis of the radiosonde data to establish that the atmosphere behaves very much as though it were an ideal gas is intriguing, because Einstein (1917) shows that in an ideal gas the greenhouse effect cannot cause net warming.

      • Well Noted! As proven by Maxwell and Poisson and noted by Einstein. The large empty spaces in gases and rapid KE vibrations, dominate any possible radiaive effect. Remembering radiation is a mere effect of KE….. Brett Keane, NZ

  4. Steven M.
    Thanks for the illuminating comment.
    Now I realize the faulty reasoning from who that must not be named.

  5. Whether you are for or against the The argument, Lord Monckton eloquently, as always, describes the material with a mixture of scientific and commonsensical reasoning. As a neutral observer some years ago it was frustrating and patronizing to be told what to think without the necessary scientific proof to back it up. If governments listened and questioned just a little what they are being told by the “consensus” scientific community then they would be in a much better place to decide on future energy policies. Since when, in history, has mankind ever sat back and stated that the science is settled? We would still be living in the dark ages if this was true (or California).

    • Many thanks to Oulman for his kind comment. The world is warming at one-third of the rate that official climatology’s own numbers would lead it to expect. Our analysis gives the theoretical explanation of the errors that have led to these absurd over-predictions.

  6. First, the 255 K emission temperature is supposed to be the surface temperature without greenhouse gases, yet – climatology calculates it by assuming today’s albedo of 0.29, which largely comes from clouds, a greenhouse gas. Professor Lindzen pointed out the illogic of this approach. He corrected it and found emission temperature to be 274 K. That fact reduces the “natural greenhouse effect” from 32 K to just 13 K, of which 8 K is natural reference sensitivity as before, leaving only 5 K as the total feedback response.”
    Not understanding.
    255K would be the emission temp on the moon surface which should be the same as on there earth without an atmosphere as they are virtually equidistant from the sun (*) due to their coupled orbits.
    The natural greenhouse effect is all GHG, is it not?
    The CO2 part of it would refer to CO2 ‘s GHG, not the whole lot, surely!
    Too much written on it for it to be otherwise.

    • Angech,
      The 255K temperature is calculated using the planetary energy balance:
      S(1-A)*PI*r^2 = E*SB*4*PI*r^2*T^4
      Where S is solar irradiance (1362), A is Bond’s Albedo (0.31), E is emissivity (assumed to be 1), SB is the Stefan Boltzmann Constant, and T is temperature. Note that PI*r^2 cancels out as it appears on both sides of the equation.

      I have plotted out the results of that formula for 16 planets and moons. Even ignoring Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune due to the theorised internal heating that still leaves 13 examples.

      This is what I found out. The formula does not work very well. It gives the wrong temperature on just about every planet and moon that we have data for. There is nothing unusual about a 33K error. Errors exist for airless world and moons which cannot, by definition, have any “Greenhouse effect”.

      Consequently one interpretation is that all GHG is due to greenhouse gasses but another, supported by more examples, is that it is just a result of using a formula that doesn’t work very well.

      Interestingly the Moon average temperature of 197K looks way out of step with the other moons I found data for. The mean day-side temperature of circa 300K looks much closer and is also close to the result of averaging T^4 over the lunar surface and then taking the fourth root.

      I’d be interested if anyone has opinions on the above observations.

    • @angech – take a hike.

      I mean that quite literally. Unless you live where you already have snow on the ground, and it has acquired a bit of dirt, you will notice that the ground is quite dark compared to the Moon.

      • Writing Observer
        Thanks for making me revisit my comments and making some belated corrections.[I was wrong]
        The solar irradiance for both the earth and the moon is the same.
        Solar irradiance (W/m2) 1361.0 1361.0 1.000.
        That is they get almost exactly the same input of energy from the sun.
        If everything was equal, and it is not ie if they had similar surfaces and no atmosphere then there surface emission would be almost identical.
        I should have said the Black- body temp of the moon is 270.4. which with an albedo of approx 12% which would give an average temp ≈236K or −37°C, not 255K.

        Now some snark. Sorry. I did say the earth without an atmosphere.
        The earth surface with out an atmosphere quite possibly could be very like the moon surface [remember the broken off from the earth theory]. In which case it would have the same emmisivity as the moon, just not 255K.
        If you were to take a hike on an earth without an atmosphere [hence no seas and no snow on the ground] I would not recommend it and yes it could look like the moon.
        If we are talking about our earth then 3 things. Moon dust is quite black [ok grey] and a lot darker than most of the earth on the ground or dirt on snow.
        The albedo of the moon is 1/3 that of the earth which means it is a lot darker, not whiter.
        You are doing Nick Stokes things of conflating what you see at night [a white moon] which is due to reflected light not emitted IR, T two totally different things.
        “The Moon has an exceptionally low albedo, giving it a reflectance that is slightly brighter than that of worn asphalt. Despite this, it is the brightest object in the sky after the Sun. color constancy in the visual system recalibrates the relations between the colors of an object and its surroundings, and because the surrounding sky is comparatively dark, the sunlit Moon is perceived as a bright object”

    • I’m unsure if you are taking into account the ‘non-condensing’ greenhouse gas qualifier in that statement. It is a way of describing separately Co2 from water vapor. It’s an important point to recognize in the discussion.

  7. scientifically illiterate governments… and …their heroically insane policies.

    Isn’t that the truth!

  8. Please do correction to read _ “greenhouse” thermally re-emissive gasses. _ We can reference the educational retardation of the warmists while still clarifying.

  9. Here is presented a simple and accurate method of calculating the average near surface atmospheric temperature on all planetary bodies which possess a surface atmospheric pressure of over 0.69kPa. This method requires knowledge of the gas constant and the measurement of only three atmospheric gas parameters; average near surface atmospheric pressure, average near surface atmospheric density and the mean molar mass of the atmosphere.

    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/324599511_Thermal_Enhancement_on_Planetary_Bodies_and_the_Relevance_of_the_Molar_Mass_Version_of_the_Ideal_Gas_Law_to_the_Null_Hypothesis_of_Climate_Change

    It is seen therefore, that as far as this formula goes, no one gas particularly affects atmospheric temperatures more than any other gas. Therefore, there can be no significant net “greenhousewarming”…….

    • Exactly what I’ve been saying for decades. The ideal gas laws make no provision for the types of gases, and they ALL operate the same in terms of temperature, pressure and volume. Those are scientific laws. The greenhouse hypothesis is not a law, it is a guess. And it is wrong.
      Earth’s temperature is what it is because there is a sun shining on it all day, every day. It is literally never switched off. We notice that it is warmer during the day, and colder at night, but somehow fail to connect the dots that the sun is what is heating the earth, not greenhouse gases.
      Oh, and by the way, if all greenhouse gases were to be removed from the atmosphere, the temperature would RISE. That’s right, RISE. Because there would be no greenhouse gases to assist with cooling the earth, it would be up to the surface to rise in temperature sufficiently to radiate back each day’s solar gain.

    • They don’t even understand elementary concepts. The +32 or +33 K number oft cited is derived from imagining the Earth is a perfectly smooth surface, they don’t understand the difference between mathematical area and real surface area.

    • GHGs do effect the temperature of a planet. As the GHG effect goes up the temperature rises causing a decrease in density at the surface. So when you take density, molar mass, and pressure your really taking into consideration the effect of GHGs. On a planet the pressure on a surface is a constant so you get an ideal gas equation of Pconstant = xRx Since surface pressure is a constant you get a formula: = 1/(RxTemperature>. So a 33K increase in temperature will result in a density decrease of about 11.5%. So our atmosphere is about 11.5% less dense than the surface than a planet without GHG.

      What I dont understand is where the so called positive feedbacks come from. The amount of radiation from a GHG at the top layer is proportional to the (Temp in Kelvin}^4th power. The top layer of water vapor is dependent on the vapor pressure of water which is dependent on temperature. So even if you increase the average temperature of the atmosphere and the amount of water vapor goes up, the amount of radiation of the top layer does not go down because it is at a constant temperature. The top layer of water vapor has just moved to a higher altitude but the same temperature.

    • It is seen therefore, that as far as this formula goes, no one gas particularly affects atmospheric temperatures more than any other gas. Since this statement is patently not true GHG exist, their effects must be included in said formula.
      Its like saying no one gas has a particular colour [false] and then saying so this gas mixture cannot have a colour.

      • ”The ideal gas laws make no provision for the types of gases”

        They do through the constant R which is unique to each gas specie. Removing GHGs would make Earth near surface global median air temperature lower and the upper atm. regions temperature rise a bit with no change in total atm. avg. T per these gas laws, the effects of surface radiation, and near surface radiation on opacity of atm. air.

        ”The +32 or +33 K number oft cited is derived from imagining the Earth is a perfectly smooth surface”

        No imagining, the 32K or 33k comes from instrumental measurements which include the actual global non-smooth Earth surface.

        ”So even if you increase the average temperature of the atmosphere and the amount of water vapor goes up”

        It is not the avg. temperature of the atm. being discussed relative to GHGs, it’s the near surface global median air temperature in question from GHGs. Increasing atm. water vapor means an increase in relative humidity. Radiative convective equilibrium with a given distribution of relative humidity was discussed over 50 years ago in Manabe and Wetherald May 1967 Jnl. Atm. Sciences. Improved since then.

        ”The author even claims the method works for Venus where the ideal gas law doesn’t apply!”

        The gas laws have been successfully applied in Venus atm., not sure which author you claim misuses them.

  10. I know of few others who can match Christopher Monckton’s way with the English language. It is always such a pleasure to listen to or to read his words.
    Of course, a fine turn of the phrase would be worthless without his equally fine intellect. Excellent column. Many thanks, Dr. Monckton!

    • Many thanks to KcTaz for his kind comments and for his even kinder award of an honorary Doctorate.

  11. According to the IPCC’s own figures for the Charney sensitivity parameter is 0.61 ±0.44 for 99% confidence.
    Therefore f can reach and exceed 1 (0.61 + 0.44 = 1.05) therefore the upper temperature can be infinitely large which is simply preposterous – it is simply mathematically false QED.

    As Prof. Ross McKitrick put it “according to the IPCC there is a ≈1% chance that an additional ton of Carbon will cause the Earth to become hotter than the Sun’s core”

    Prof. Ross McKitrick’s off the cuff remark is in fact remarkably “conservative” – if you work back through the statistics of the IPCC feedback f given as 0.61 ± 0.44 for 99% confidence.
    99% confidence equates to ±1.68σ therefore 1σ = (0.44÷1.68) = 0.262 equals one standard deviation.
    Now the singularity (divide by zero problem) occurs when f = 1 or (1-0.61) = 0.39 greater than average of 0.61.
    Which is 0.39÷0.262 = 1.49σ – which from stats tables is 43.2% of the area above average 50% – leaving 6.8% probability that the singularity can occur.

    The IPCC is saying there is a ±7% chance that we will detonate the entire universe !

    (That is if you explore the equations further – they obviously don’t actually express it this way and would accuse me of deliberately misrepresenting their “science” but they chose to misrepresent the science – not me – I am merely showing you where that leads, to show that they are demonstrably wrong per impossibile if you follow their “proof” to its logical conclusion.)

    “If you start an argument in a certain place and don’t go far enough, you can get any answer you want.” Richard Feynman

    • “would accuse me of deliberately misrepresenting their “science””
      You are deliberately misrepresenting the science. Quote it properly, with references.

      If you twist what people say, you can get any answer you want.

      • And by sniping his words, you deliberately misrepresent what he said.

        That is if you explore the equations further – they obviously don’t actually express it this way and would accuse me of deliberately misrepresenting their “science” but they chose to misrepresent the science – not me – I am merely showing you where that leads, to show that they are demonstrably wrong per impossibile if you follow their “proof” to its logical conclusion.)

        Try pointing out where his logical conclusions are wrong (if you can, judging by your response thus far I don’t expect you will) rather than misrepresenting what he actually said.

    • So that is why we have only 12 years to save the planet or up she goes in universal explosion.

      Now I know what Greta meant about systems collapsing .. how dare you all.

  12. “That fact reduces the “natural greenhouse effect” from 32 K to just 13 K”

    No, it doesn’t. The greenhouse effect is the impedance of the passage of IR due to greenhouse gases. The proper way to estimate it is to see what temperature you would get without that impedance. The fact that removal of clouds would change albedo is not part of the greenhouse effect.

    It also isn’t realistic. Lord M posts of a few months ago cited Lacis’ modelling of actual removal of non-condensing GHG. In fact, while most wv disappeared from the air due to cooling, clouds actually increased, and the post-GHG removal temperature actually dropped below 255 K.

    • “Nick Stokes October 29, 2019 at 2:05 am

      The greenhouse effect is the impedance of the passage of IR…”

      Oh Jesus truck me! What utter BOLLOX!

        • I have never used, or seen, the word impedance used (Outside of electronics) to describe the passage of IR through the atmosphere to support the theory of the GHE. It certainly is imaginary.

    • “Nick Stokes October 29, 2019 at 2:05 am

      The greenhouse effect is the impedance of the passage of IR due to greenhouse gases…”

      Sorry. I should have asked you to show your evidence of that. My first reaction is usually correct.

    • OMG classic Nick the troll .. lets redefine greenhouse effect

      Perhaps read the IPCC kiddies page Nick
      https://wg1.ipcc.ch/publications/wg1-ar4/faq/wg1_faq-1.3.html

      Seriously this stupidity has to stop Nick you can’t just redefine things to suit your argument.

      The climate models may remove things for calculation basis (because there are arguments you can do so) but that does not form part of any definition change. For example you can argue to drop Water from the computer models and Gavin shows the logic here
      http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/04/water-vapour-feedback-or-forcing/

      That does not mean water is not part of the greenhouse effect 🙂

      Now lets use the real climate site on forcings since Nick might at least not try to redefine it
      http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2013/10/the-evolution-of-radiative-forcing-bar-charts/

      So the albedo changes are in there on the “good side” as they claim they have had a cooling effect.
      In fact in hard science meta-materials you can setup Greenhouse Effect with only albedo change.

      The normal definition of Greenhouse Effect is simply and effect by which heat that is trapped to an object, how and why does not form part of the definition.

      Unsurprisingly the IPCC follows the same definition.

      • “Perhaps read the IPCC kiddies page Nick”
        So what does it say?
        “Much of this thermal radiation emitted by the land and ocean is absorbed by the atmosphere, including clouds, and reradiated back to Earth. This is called the greenhouse effect.”
        Exactly what I said.

        “The normal definition of Greenhouse Effect is simply and effect by which heat that is trapped to an object”
        Again, exactly what I said.

        • So don’t stop reading there keep reading my little troll you will run across thiss

          “Clouds are effective at absorbing infrared radiation and therefore exert a large greenhouse effect,”

          Yet Nick claims above
          “The fact that removal of clouds would change albedo is not part of the greenhouse effect.”

          So do you want to accept you are wrong again or are you going to redefine something else to crawl out of your hole you dug yourself in.

          • Yes little troll that statement is correct but not what you said is it. Notice that statement makes no difference how the difference occurs it can be clouds, little green aliens, flying cows, a QM heat cloak, albedo change or indeed a greenhouse gas.

            It’s an EFFECT it is the result that matters not how.

            So this statement is wrong .. remove the last 3 words.
            “The greenhouse effect is the impedance of the passage of IR due to greenhouse gases…”
            Then you double down on stupid with this Nickism which you don’t dare emention in your reply.

            The fact that removal of clouds would change albedo is not part of the greenhouse effect.

            The IPCC page told you that is wrong it stated the exact opposite and still you try to argue this and redefine your way out.

          • Mr Stokes is incorrect in suggesting that 255 K emission temperature is calculated by assuming no clouds are present. The 255 K value is calculated assuming today’s albedo, which implies clouds are present.

            As Lindzen (1994) points out, it is more logical to start with the temperature that would obtain if all greenhouse gases, including clouds, were removed from the atmosphere.

          • “Mr Stokes is incorrect in suggesting that 255 K emission temperature is calculated by assuming no clouds are present.”
            I said that it is calculated assuming no impedance to outgoing IR from GHG or clouds. That impedance is the greenhouse effect.

            The calculation is to quantify the GH effect, which it does. It is not to calculate the effect of total removal of water. That is not going to happen and is not of interest. But GHGs are increasing, the GH effect is increasing, and that is why we want to know how much effect it currently has.

          • Mr Stokes continues to misrepresent official climatology’s position, which is that the imagined 32 K difference between its 255 K underestimate of emission temperature and the 287 K temperature in 1850 is the “natural greenhouse effect”, comprising not only the 8 K natural reference sensitivity to the preindustrial noncondensing greenhouse gases but also the 24 K natural feedback response thereto, chiefly from water vapor.

            That is why it is necessary to calculate the emission temperature without clouds. The emission temperature warms the ocean, releasing water vapor, which acts as a strong negative feedback thanks to the presence of clouds. To omit that negative feedback is to ascribe to the greenhouse gases far more feedback response than is appropriate.

    • Nick Stokes: ” The proper way to estimate it [the greenhouse effect]”

      Why can’t we measure it rather than estimate it?

    • Agree with the first part, Nick.
      However if a GHG also has a known albedo effect then that does have to be taken into consideration if you are specifying a climate sensitivity in an atmosphere containing such a gas. If clouds reduce the amount of incoming radiation and hence the amount of Infrared able to be developed then that does affect the temperature response of that atmosphere (as you are always fully aware).

      Your off the cuff comment about the Lacis modelling
      “ Lacis’ modelling of actual removal of non-condensing GHG. In fact, while most wv disappeared from the air due to cooling, clouds actually increased, and the post-GHG removal temperature actually dropped below 255 K”
      Actual article
      “The scope of the climate impact becomes apparent in just 10 years. During the first year alone, global mean surface temperature falls by 4.6°C. After 50 years, the global temperature stands at –21°C, a decrease of 34.8°C. Atmo- spheric water vapor is at ~10% of the control cli- mate value (22.6 to 2.2 mm). Global cloud cover increases from its 58% control value to more than 75%, and the global sea ice fraction goes from 4.6% to 46.7%, causing the planetary albedo of Earth to also increase from ~29% to 41.8%.”

      Contains a lot of Lacis mumbo jumbo and Stokes spin.
      Clouds are an accumulation of water vapor. The more water vapour the more clouds. Less water vapour , less clouds. He did not say clouds increased , he said cloud cover increased, a totally different thing.
      There were less clouds in the air in volume and mass but his computer model said more cloud cover.
      Perhaps one could spin a yarn that “because the atmosphere had also shrunk what few clouds there were able to form formed very closely to the surface of the sea and covered more of the earth”
      Grimace.
      Or charitably one could say don’t get Nic Lewis started on this or we will have to retract the 2010 paper as well.
      Uncharitably
      “ Global cloud cover increases from its 58% control value to more than 75%”
      That one line is impossible, and makes the whole paper invalid.

      • Less atmospheric temperature means more clouds, as what humidity is available in the air will condense easier/faster when exposed to a cold front. A warmer atmosphere carries more moisture but does so invisibly until a cold front comes along, which doesn’t happen as often with warm high pressure zones dominating over continents (such as the Four Corners High, a staple of the American southwestern deserts in the summer). A drop of 4.6C in the global mean surface temp is HUGE in only one year! It would totally change the circulation patterns in the atmosphere radically. In 50 years, that condition would be devastating to plant life on earth. An ice age.

        And as it has happened before, so it shall happen again.

        • Nick Stokes
          “He did not say clouds increased , he said cloud cover increased, a totally different thing”
          Please explain the difference.”
          You are feigning ignorance as usual. It is an egregious characteristic.

          There is a difference between cloud increase and cloud cover.
          Total cloud cover is the fraction of the sky covered by all the visible clouds.
          Cloud amount refers to the fraction of the sky covered by clouds of a particular type or combination.
          When clouds are layered or otherwise superposed, the sum of the observed cloud amounts exceeds the total cloud cover.
          Basically you can measure clouds in two ways.
          One is indirect by not being able to see the sun as it cannot penetrate the clouds, a surface area measurement of opacity only.
          The other is by the amount of cloud in the atmosphere, the actual volume and mass of the cloud particles.
          In other words if you just take the surface area you are ignoring the rest of the clouds in the atmosphere.
          Clouds occur in multiple layers. If the top layer blocked all the sun, 100% cloud cover, the other cloud layers still exist and still have effects [GHG] but you are denying that they are clouds.
          In other words it is a fact that clouds [amount] can and does decrease while cloud cover, purely a surface area measurement of light transmission, not the clouds themselves increase.

          Cold enough, no clouds, warmer some clouds, lots of heat, lots of clouds.

    • True, the greenhouse effect is a measure of the impedance of the atmosphere to radiation of heat from the earth into space. But Lord M’s point is that the albedo of the earth without atmosphere, hence without clouds, would be a different number than what has been used by the IPCC-types. The albedo without clouds would be lower, with more absorption, less reflection, of solar energy. Therefore the equilibrium temp without the greenhouse atmosphere should have been calculated as a higher baseline. And therefore the difference left to call “greenhouse effect” in 1850 at their baseline is smaller. So the sensitivity to the presence of greenhouse gasses is smaller than the estimates given. And adding CO2 will produce less warming. This is pretty simple logic.

    • Nick –> “No, it doesn’t. The greenhouse effect is the impedance of the passage of IR due to greenhouse gases. The proper way to estimate it is to see what temperature you would get without that impedance. The fact that removal of clouds would change albedo is not part of the greenhouse effect.”

      I must be going blind. I’m sure that this says that greenhouse gases create an effect of impedance and that by removing that impedance you could make an estimate. However, this statement also says that removal of clouds is not part of the greenhouse effect.

      Someone please explain how removing water vapor, a greenhouse gas, would also remove clouds yet not affect the albedo.

    • Mr Stokes is of course entitled to his own definition of the natural greenhouse effect, but that definition is at odds with official climatology’s definition. Lacis et al. (2010) make it quite clear that the “natural greenhouse effect” is the entire 33 K difference between the 255 K emission temperature and today’s 288 K temperature. More properly, that should be the 32 K difference between the 255 K emission temperature and the 287 K temperature in 1850.

      Lacis et al. make it quite plain that they accord one-quarter of the 32 natural greenhouse effect (i.e., 8 K) to natural reference sensitivity to the preindustrial noncondensing greenhouse gases, and the remaining three-quarters (24 K) to water-vapor feedback. Last time I looked, water vapor was a greenhouse gas. If Mr Stokes disagrees with Lacis et al., he should take the matter up not with me but with them.

      He goes on to say that Lacis’ model showed global temperature falling below emission temperature if noncondensing greenhouse gases were removed and water vapor were partly removed. Well, if Lacis et al start out by being wrong about the magnitude of the natural feedback response, they are bound to come to a wrong conclusion on running their rinky-dink computer game.

      If, however, water vapor were entirely removed, emission temperature would be 274 K, as Professor Lindzen says.

      It would be interesting, therefore, to see a chart of the expected specific humidity given various global mean temperatures, and of the expected cloud cover too. At present, official climatology seems to be imagining that though without greenhouse gases in the air the temperature would be 274 K, if there were a little water vapor in the air the temperature would be less than 255 K; and yet that at today’s specific humidity the temperature is 288 K.

    • OK, I get this ‘impedance’ — now, does it work only in one direction, as in outbound? If anything is to impede some radiation going away, wouldn’t that same thing impede the same radiation going in??
      Spectrum of insolation at the Earth surface is quite different than that outside the atmopsphere; ~52% of all that energy is of IR spectrum (due to reflection, scattering and absorption) and now, wouldn’t the so called GHG’s quite eagerly null their net effect by blocking their (miniscule) portions of the incoming radiation spectra as well?

  13. “In that event, after feedback the reference sensitivity of just over 1 K to doubled CO2 concentration would become final warming of 4.1 K – and that, indeed, is the current mean midrange estimate in 21 sixth-generation models of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project”

    Christopher, correct me if I am wrong, but it is my understanding that the overall sensitivity is an emergent product of the models and is not used in them per-se. However Im not exactly sure how the models are tuned to produce the stable unperturbed baseline that Roy Spencer talks about. Does the reference sensitivity have a role in that ?

    • In reply to Terry, I’m no expert on how the models work: my team’s approach is to use external methods to verify their output. Equilibrium sensitivity (the models’ current mean is 4.1 K per CO2 doubling) is of course an output from the models rather than an input.

      The reference sensitivity in the models is about 1.024 K per CO2 doubling. So 4.1 K equilibrium sensitivity implies that feedback response quadruples reference sensitivity. One only has to state that to see how inherently absurd it is in a near-perfectly thermostatic climate system.

  14. The utter stupidity of atmospheric CO2 ‘greenhouse warming’ stems fro the ridiculous belief that the atmosphere and the oceans are somehow two very separate systems. The atmosphere is NOT an isolated bio-system, it is part of the structural and biological global system of this beautiful planet.
    If you ‘decarbonize’ the atmosphere then the CO2 partial pressure differential with the oceans/seas/lakes/etc. would increase, and CO2 would vent from them to reestablish an atmospheric equilibrium!
    Now consider that since about 1850 till now the average global temperature has risen by about 1°C, is it not logical that atmospheric CO2 should also rise? At the current oceanic SST (sea surface temperature) and global atmospheric temperatures, the atmospheric CO2 level is at about 410ppm, due to the oceanic influences. Is not that the level it should be at? Ho-hummm…Not that there is any verified empirical evidence to corroborate, or deny, my assertion.

    Let the stupidity continue! For westernized populations are ready and willing to have their ‘rights’ and wealth devalued, they’re willing to becoming more nations of sheeple just like China or Russia.
    Lets have much more hubris before the fall! Then history can be properly rewritten.

  15. Politics has become a conundrum wrapped in a dilemma.

    The Carbon Defense Union, CDU, is actually anti-carbon, stole the Green’s Thunder, as the results show, and together with Blair’s New Labour SPD (documented) turned off the worlds best nuclear.

    The Left (Linke) founded after the New Labour fiasco has now also stolen some Carbon Thunder.

    Yet a Left-Carbon alliance will not talk to the AfD, which while commendably standing up for Monckton and Shaviv, are into National Monetarism (see founder manifesto).

  16. I don’t get the logic of this method. The correct baseline is surely an Earth with zero CO2/CH4 in the atmosphere, but with the same albedo as the current Earth (i.e including clouds at their present day coverage).

    If you want to then include changes in cloud cover with temperature, that would be stage 2. But change one variable at once surely.

    • In response to kzb, if one wants to compare the global temperature with and without greenhouse gases in the air one must, logically speaking, take all of the greenhouse gases out of the air. That gives a mean temperature of 274 K. But today’s temperature is only 287 K. Not much of a natural greenhouse effect, then.

  17. Nick Stokes, I must commend you for mentioning this article.
    “Lacis et al. 2010
    Lacis, A.A, G.A. Schmidt, D. Rind, and R.A. Ruedy, 2010: Atmospheric CO2: Principal control knob governing Earth’s temperature. Science, 330, 356-359, doi:10.1126/science.1190653.”
    I am sure LM has read it and may wish to comment on it when he answers our comments.
    The biggest laugh in it is when Lacis and the congressman state that the 75% of the GHG in the atmosphere should be counted as feedbacks rather than forcings like CO2, methane and Ozone.
    Because water vapour can precipitate from the atmosphere!
    Despite the fact that it is being constantly fed back in at the same rate as it goes out ( more or less) .
    What a blatant misrepresentation.
    Then because 75% of the GHG are excluded as a forcing based on this rubbish statement.
    They go on to say that all of the forcing is only caused by the remaining 25% .
    Is this where the concept of the x3 feedbacks magically creeps in.
    And Lacis, you are a genius.

    • In response to Angech, I have indeed read Lacis et al. (2010): I cited it in the head posting, which is why Mr Stokes mentioned it. The notion in Lacis that the “natural greenhouse effect” is 32 K, of which three-quarters is water vapor feedback, is of course nonsense – but it is the nonsense that official climatology believes.

  18. Best line ever:
    [blockquote] The Planet was triumphantly Saved 2000 years ago and it doesn’t need to be Saved again.[/blockquote]
    On another note, I would like to see data from experiments quantifying the infrared absorption of CO2 both with and without water vapor. I have found nothing on this. The theory of manmade global warming is founded on this premise. Surely there is experimental data. I’ve seen studies showing the infrared wavelengths absorbed by CO2, but nothing that experimentally quantifies the amount of warming it causes. Again with and without the presence of water vapor. Can anyone provide references?

    • “The sun radiates heat to earth in the day. At night the reverse happens when the warmer earth radiates heat to the cold night sky. Roofs of buildings radiate heat day and night at a rate of up to 75 watts per square meter. During the day, this is offset by solar radiation gains on the roof, however, at night, this heat loss has the ability to cool air as roofs can experience a temperature drop of 6 to 20 °C below ambient.”

      Humidity slows down the cooling of a surface by infrared at night and slows down the warming of a surface by sunshine in the daytime.

      https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1876610212016219

      • The Sun does not radiate heat to the Earth. The Sun smothers the Earth in EM radiation. The Earth uses that EM energy to “heat” it.

        • Patrick MjD

          Agreed… lots of people slip up on that.
          But the paper is still valid in that it clarifies the real radiative properties of water vapour and its power to slow the cooling of a surface by radiation at night, which with low humidity can cool from 6-10ºC below the surrounding air temperature.

  19. “…the 287 K observed global mean surface temperature in 1850..,”.

    By whom was it observed and recorded?

    • The first global temperature dataset was HadCRUT, which began in 1850. See Morice et al. (2012).

  20. Christopher:

    “It must be distributed in some fashion between that natural reference sensitivity, on the one hand, and, on the other, the emission temperature that would obtain at the Earth’s surface in the absence of any greenhouse gases.”

    [Emphasis added]

    Can I take this change in your text (from earlier explications) as an indication that perhaps the scientific “test” has been upgraded? I refer of course to the change from “absence of an atmosphere” to “absence of any greenhouse gases”. I still wish you would use the near surface air temperature, because for 1850 that is the metric you use, not the surface temperature.

    While I agree that the average surface temperature has to be the same as the no-atmosphere case, your comparison for the purposes of calculating feedbacks is based on the air temperature as measured above the surface, not the radiating surface (the ground).

    If one wants to establish the influence of greenhouse gases in an atmosphere, one must consider the baseline case which is an atmosphere without any, not a planet with no atmosphere at all. From you text above, so far so good. Next, you should not compare the air temperature in 1850 (2m above the ground) with the effective radiation temperature of the ground with there are no GHG’s.

    The difference is not subtle. The “air temperature” without GHG’s is well above the surface temperature because the air is heated directly by the surface yet cannot cool radiatively. We are trying to determine the net influence of GHG’s not only the radiative contribution.

    As the GHG’s rise from zero the air temperature will drop, and the back-radiation effect starts to be manifested. The “warming” by GHG’s is the net difference between the baseline case and the current case. The baseline case is not a planet with no atmosphere.

    As the GHG influence increases, the contribution by convective heat transfer to the air is reduced, but it is and always was there, just ignored by the IPCC.

    Until this very date, everyone has been referring to no atmosphere and an atmosphere with GHG’s.

    I have seen no determination of what the near surface air temperature would be if there were no GHG’s in the atmosphere. Are you suggesting there should be one to establish the baseline case? I surely hope so. The misdirection on this point has been highly misleading.

    If Earth had an atmosphere without any GHG’s the air would be heated by the surface (convection heat transfer) and the air could not cool radiatively. Then surely, by all logic, the near surface air temperature would be higher than that of the average temperature of the surface. Daily inversions guarantee that truth, as in Ulaanbaatar on every night the temperature drops below -30. The air above remain far warmer. The surface warms it in the daytime and does not cool it by night. Ergo, the net effect of GHG’s + feedbacks cannot be responsible for the whole difference between -18C and _15 C.

    • Crispin in Waterloo,

      “The difference is not subtle. The “air temperature” without GHG’s is well above the surface temperature because the air is heated directly by the surface yet cannot cool radiatively.”

      If the only source of heat for the air is from the surface, I don’t see how the air could ever become warmer than the surface. If it did then the transfer of heat would reverse to the air heating the surface.

      • John

        Your point is well taken. So what is the surface temperature during the day when there are no clouds, and the insolation is the full 1363 W/m^2?

        It is not that it is warmer “than the surface” it is warmer than the 24 hr average surface temperature. The moon serves here as a good example: 107 C in the daytime and -150 at night. At night the warm air would NOT easily cool against the surface because it would rise – strongly. Only if there were thermals (rising air currents) so strong that it drove warm air against the surface and heated it (the surface) permitting the energy to be radiated from the surface into space. Remember there is no way for the air to cool if there are no radiative gases in it. It might reach 107 C near the surface.

        The air temperature would eventually reach the maximum temperature of the surface in the daytime, which is to say, bloody hot. Above the surface, the normal temperature profile would prevail. There would be an adiabatic lapse rate and there would be the direct thermalisation of dispersed gases in the whole atmosphere (which is a third heating path). If the only way for energy to depart the planet was radiation from the surface, the atmosphere would get hotter and hotter until it transferred the daytime energy gain by touching the surface at night.

        If one admits that there would be strong enough thermals to achieve this, it simultaneously requires that they are driven by heat transfer from the surface – the major source of warming. Thermals are heat-driven. Once that air is heated, how would it cool? Not by radiation.

        If GHG’s were added to such an atmosphere, it would cool rapidly. But that is not what the IPCC says. They say it would be cold, that the air would be the same temperature as the surface of the moon. They forgot the sun is shining and heating the surface. Absent GHG’s there is indeed no thermalisation of the air by greenhouse gases because there aren’t any, but that absence clears the way for convective heat transfer to double and carry on heating. It is a pretty obvious mistake on their part, if you ask me.

  21. Christopher, thanks as always. You say:

    “First, the 255 K emission temperature is supposed to be the surface temperature without greenhouse gases, yet – bizarrely – climatology calculates it by assuming today’s albedo of 0.29, which largely comes from clouds, a greenhouse gas.

    As far back as 1994, the redoubtable Professor Lindzen pointed out the illogic of this approach. He corrected it and found emission temperature to be 274 K. That fact reduces the “natural greenhouse effect” from 32 K to just 13 K, of which 8 K is natural reference sensitivity as before, leaving only 5 K as the total feedback response.”

    I fear I have to disagree with both analyses. The question is complex. As one possible condition, we have the moon at the same distance from the sun as is the earth … with a mean temperature on the order of 240K. That would put the “natural greenhouse effect” at ~ 47 K.

    Is that number correct? Unknown, because it depends on a host of assumptions.

    There is a most excellent post by Dr. Robert Brown here on WUWT entitled Earth’s baseline black-body model – “a damn hard problem”. He shows exactly why it is so hard to establish what the Earth’s baseline temperature might be.

    TL;DR? The bottom line, as Dr. Brown eloquently establishes, is that we don’t know how much cooler the earth would be in the absence of the natural greenhouse effect … but we can be pretty sure that it is more than 8 K, possibly much larger.

    Best to you and yours,

    w.

    • We do know that the moon has a lower Bond albedo than Earth. The Moon’s Bond albedo is 0.11 and for Earth it is 0.31. But, 1 metre down, the regolith is at a fairly constant minus 30 degrees C. So the equilibrium temperature of the Moon is cold.
      Going by the Bond albedos, the no-atmosphere Earth would be even colder presumably (as long as the Bond albedo was maintained at 0.31).

    • “As one possible condition, we have the moon at the same distance from the sun as is the earth … with a mean temperature on the order of 240K. That would put the “natural greenhouse effect” at ~ 47 K.”

      Only if the surface has no convection heat transfer to the air. The “high” for the surface of the moon is 107 C. Without GHG’s in the way, 1362 W/m^2 will heat the surface of the earth. Some of that heat is going to be transferred to the atmosphere without any GHG’s involved.

      https://www.universetoday.com/19623/temperature-of-the-moon/

      If the moon had an atmosphere like the earth, the air would be heated by contact with the surface under all conditions. If there were no GHG’s, that air could only cool by contact with the surface at night when a strong inversion condition would persist until morning. Warm air rises.

      So, like the moon, the Earth’s surface might drop to -153 at night, but the warmed air would not flow down to lose heat to it. Think of an open freezer in a department store. It stays cold because of the inversion with cold air pooling in the freezer compartment, warm air above.

      The net effect of GHG warming is the difference between the baseline temperature of the Earth with an atmosphere without GHG’s, and the temperature when they have been added. Other comparisons are of no value to the determination of ECS.

      It is not the difference between having no atmosphere at all and having one with GHG’s. It doesn’t matter what the Moon does. It matters what the Earth’s atmosphere does with and without GHG’s. Once that is established, one can project what will happen if the concentration of GHG’s is increased.

      We do not know it will be 8K colder, because without considering direct heating of the air by the surface during the daytime, the formula is incomplete.

      • Yes, I agree with your baseline. It should be the GHG-zero atmosphere, but all other variables remaining the same. Let’s change one variable at once.

        • The correct Gedankenexperiment is to assume the current Earth, which, unlike the Moon, is chiefly covered by ocean with a mean albedo 0.067, but without any greenhouse gases in the air – and that means no clouds. The mean albedo of the Earth without clouds would not be 0.293, as at present, but 0.144 (Stephens et al. 2015). Therefore, global mean surface temperature would be about 268 K, or 274 K according to Professor Lindzen.

    • Willis, I hope one day you have the time to dumb down the Connolly’s study of the balloon data ( for we dummies) and tell us whether you agree with their findings?
      There’s a lot of balloon data over a long period and yet few seem to show much interest in their analysis? Why is this the case?

    • In response to Mr Eschenbach, Professor Lindzen’s point is a simple one. If one removes the clouds, the Earth’s albedo will fall. In my talks, I show a picture of the Earth from space and ask people progressively to shut their eyes. The last thing they see is the clouds, and that shows how influential cloud albedo is.

      Official climatology estimates that without clouds the Earth’s albedo would fall by half, from 0.29 to 0.145. Like it or not, that would increase the amount of solar radiation reaching the ground from the current 238 Watts per square meter to about 292 Watts per square meter (see e.g. Mueller 2011, or Stephens 2015).

      Therefore, the emission temperature would be about 268 K, using the crude single application of the Stefan-Boltzmann equation that official climatology favors, or 274 K according to Lindzen (1994).

      The derivation of emission temperature in the absence of greenhouse gases may or may not be as difficult as Professor Brown imagines. Whether or not it is as difficult as he imagines, official climatology’s 255 K value is wrong because it includes clouds, which should logically be excluded because they are a greenhouse gas, and we are trying to derive the true natural greenhouse effect.

      If Michael and Ronan Connolly are right, emission temperature exceeds today’s surface temperature, and the greenhouse effect is incapable of causing any warming.

  22. From the article: “In the end, just two disconsolate protesterettes from Fridays for Fascism (or some such title) turned up.”

    Did one of them look like Jane Fonda?

  23. I always try to boil everything down into the simplest terms when it comes to these subjects, as usually the discussions devolve into endless arguments backed up by mathematical calculations that are then refuted by more calculations. In short: if the Earth’s climate sensitivity/feedback were much more than 1, our climate and its history would be absolute chaos. Every slight change in one direction or another would spiral into Venus or Mars. Instead our climate is actually very stable, with repeating cycles over the last few million years corresponding to the Milankovich cycles, CO2 lagging temperature (like soda in your fridge), and shorter fluctuations correlating to changes in solar activity (Maunder Minimum, et. al.), El Nino, etc.

    • If only it were as simple as Mr Morton suggests. However, the elementary mathematics of feedback (see e.g. Bode 1945, ch. 3; Black 1934) shows that runaway feedback will only occur if the feedback factor is unity. In official climatology, it is about 0.67. In reality, it is a great deal less than that. There is, therefore, no danger of runaway feedback.

  24. I love this site. So much better than banging my head against Desmogblog. I was blocked from posting there within a day.
    I was called “despicable”, (for my comments about Greta) “gullible”, and accused of being an uneducated moron.
    Whether everyone agrees with Christopher Monckton doesn’t matter. I am officially now a fan of his beautiful, clear, and humorously presented analysis, and am now glued to this website for the informed, intelligent discourse I’d been looking for. (There may be a few exceptions concerning contributors.)

  25. In a real world, where a scientist was well aware of the exponential rise of water vapor-pressure with temperature, the idea of presenting a simple number as being representative of “climate sensitivity” (either transient, or equilibrium) would be considered ridiculous.

    This is what happens when we let people get carried away with their models and abstractions of imagined constants that they create with them in a world presented as having a simple “temperature”.

  26. Can someone please help me out here?

    I’ve read articles several times on Whats Up With That which were written by Lord Monckton regarding Charney sensisitivity and other subjects. He seems to be an exceptionally intelligent and knowledgeable individual. However, it always goes over my head. I wasn’t good at physics or math in college so a well written simple explanation would be helpful to this general geologist!

    • If Rafiel Googles “Monckton UKIP” he will find a recent talk by me in which the main points are very simply stated in half an hour.

  27. Both numbers, 255 K and 274 K, are correct depending on what you are trying to do. Contest is all important here. In this case I think Christopher chose the wrong one. Here’s the logic.

    If we are trying to understand is how much warmer is the planet’s surface than it would be without an atmosphere then the 274 K would be the valid starting point. But, that’s not the question. We know we have an atmosphere and we know we have clouds that reflect a lot of solar energy.

    Given these assumptions we also know only enough solar energy reaches the surface to keep it at 255 K. The real question we are trying to understand is why are we at 287 K with only enough energy to give us 255 K? Why is the surface 32 K warmer than the available energy would seem to dictate?

    Don’t call it the greenhouse effect. Call it the Sally. What we have is combination of various physical forces that come into play. One of those is the absorption of radiation by the atmosphere and subsequent re-radiation in all directions. We also have convection, conduction, latent heat, etc.

    My point is that the Sally effect is 32 K and that needs to be the base of this particular analysis.

    • “As things now stand, official climatology describes the 32 K difference between the 255 K emission temperature and the 287 K observed global mean surface temperature in 1850 as the “natural greenhouse effect”. It is assumed – see e.g. Lacis et al. (2010) – that a quarter of this 32 K, or 8 K, is natural reference sensitivity, while three-quarters, or 24 K, is natural feedback response. As far back as 1994, the redoubtable Professor Lindzen pointed out the illogic of this approach. He corrected it and found emission temperature to be 274 K..”
      Entropy and Energy: A Universal Competition
      By Ingo Müller, Wolf Weiss Bare earth The simplest model ignores the atmospheres and the temperature between day and night. What is not ignored is the albedo of 0.28. This results in a Te of 255 which is correct if we ignore that the bare earth would have a different albedo.
      LM is right folks!

      Giving me a headache.
      So when we talk about the emission temperature of the earth as 255C at a height of say 100 K as TOA with a known albedo somewhere about 0.3 this is not what Richard Lindzen is talking about?
      You are saying that the bare earth surface , albedo zero has a temperature of 274C?.

      Lacis is clearly misleading as Wiki states “the fact that Cloud cover values only vary by 0.03 from year to year, On average, about 52% of Earth is cloud-covered at any moment. ”
      In view of these two statements which basically say that the water vapor level in the atmosphere is as much of a constant just like CO2 [despite precipitation uptake keeps it constant], how can Lacis and Schmidt get away with calling water vapor a feedback and CO2 a forcing when both have an equal right to be called a forcing.
      Furthermore can anyone explain why Water vapor as a feedback contributes 75% i.e. 3 C to warming whereas CO2 as a forcing contributes 1C in this paper for a doubling CO2.
      The fact that water vapor is 75% of the GHG involved compared to 20% for CO2 and other GHG worries me greatly when you look at feedback to forcings calculations. Is this fair what Lacis et al are doing here?
      It feels wrong.

      I sort of understand the point that if 274 to 288 is only 14 C and water vapor is 75% of this then Climate sensitivity is lower.
      But both sides arguments are not clear.
      The bare moon albedo 0.12 has a temp of 270.4 C. NASA moon fact sheet. So I guess 274C is possibly correct for a moon like albedo earth. It still depends on which albedo Lindzen chose, possibly closer to 0.10 but not a black-body obviously.It should be stated in your argument as it is very important.

      Assuming a moon like earth surface no atmosphere albedo 0.12 255C sounds good.
      If with an atmosphere and water and green stuff and CO2 increasing the water vapor amount a little the albedo does rise to 0.28 or 0.32 or whatever giving a T of 288C at the surface I for one am prepared to admit a GHG effect and atmosphere effect of up to 32C, less the substantial non water vapor GHG albedo effects.
      In fact the GHG effect of water vapor and the smaller amounts of GHGs could be higher than 32/3 C; sorry LM, as the correcting albedo effect of the clouds is quite strong and increases with increasing temperature increasing cloud amounts despite the decreasing cloud cover [heh,heh Nick].
      The fact is the GHG effect is present but due to the increasing albedo effects of increasing water vapor in the atmosphere dampening its major GHG influence it is a lot less than the warmists say and a bit more than LM cares to admit.

    • In response to Richard M, one must logically exclude all greenhouse gases from the atmosphere to obtain the emission temperature that would prevail without them. Water vapor in the form of clouds is a greenhouse gas. Therefore, clouds must be removed. Therefore, emission temperature is 268 to 274 K, and not 255 K.

      Greenhouse gases have two effects – of warming and of cooling. If one only counts the warming effect, one obtains excessive estimates of equilibrium sensitivity. One must count both effects. The cooling very largely offsets the warming.

      • ”Both numbers, 255 K and 274 K, are correct depending on what you are trying to do.”

        Yes.

        ”Water vapor in the form of clouds is a greenhouse gas.”

        Water vapor is NOT in the form of clouds. Clouds are composed of liquid water droplets thus clouds are visible while water vapor is visibly clear.

        Atm. liquid water is not a greenhouse gas so clouds do NOT need to be removed to get the median annual 255K which in field of meteorology is termed Earth’s median annual effective temperature as observed from space. T effective surface = 288K indicated give or take depending on choice of annual periods instrumentally measured.

        A good way to think about Earth’s atm. so called GHE is using comparable measured annualized median values: Earth Teffective surface 288K – Earth Teffective space 255K (which includes the natural clouds) = effective 33K give or take in the period measured which is also calculable from observations and first principles (how? refer to a relevant 1st course meteorology text).

        ”The cooling very largely offsets the warming.”

        The upper atm. cooling exactly offsets the lower atm. warming due atm. GHGs by 1LOT. Actually, measuring well enough to show this is not currently possible mostly due all the meteorological variables & since permanent thermometer fields in the stratosphere do not exist as they do near Earth’s surface.

        • Trick “Atm. liquid water is not a greenhouse gas”
          Ah well it must be a greenhouse atmospheric liquid then. It still absorbs and re emits does it not?
          Try arguing science rather than pedantry.
          atmospheric liquid water or water vapor both have greenhouse effects and need to be removed.

          ” permanent thermometer fields in the stratosphere do not exist as they do near Earth’s surface.”
          Mumbo jumbo.
          What is a “permanent thermometer field”, a rubbish tip near a hospital perhaps.
          Satellites do provide pretty good stratospheric temperature measurements around the clock while they are up there if what you mean is the ability to measure the temperature of the stratosphere.
          Earth surface assessments of the stratospheric temperatures suffer a lot of problems. Perhaps you have heard of clouds, they get in the way.

          • ”(Liquid water) still absorbs and re emits does it not?”

            All matter does so. Except not re-emit, all matter emits brand new photons.

            ”What is a “permanent thermometer field”

            A set of weather stations. Google GHCN. Satellites measure effective temperature. Yes, clouds are complications.

          • “Satellites measure effective temperature.”
            effective temperature? Semantics.
            Rebutted so change the argument.

            The question is whether they measure stratospheric temperature effectively.
            despite all the meteorological variables.
            They do an extremely good job of measuring it I believe.

            No Mosher drive byes please.

            ”(Liquid water) in the atmosphere still absorbs and re emits does it not?”
            “All matter does so. Except not re-emit, all matter emits brand new photons.”
            More semantics.
            It is a greenhouse water molecule in the atmosphere acting just the same as a GHG water vapor molecule despite your attempted spin.
            Do they only absorb old photons and emit new ones?
            Do they absorb new ones and emit old ones?
            Do they absorb old ones and emit old ones ?
            Do they absorb new ones and emit new ones?
            They absorb the energy and then they emit that energy, old or new.
            Or they emit energy, reabsorb energy and re emit it.
            After a few million goes I am sure we are allowed to use the term re emit.
            It is a common term for the discharge of energy having absorbed energy.
            I do not think it is a brand new water molecule.
            Driven by an old lady or not.

  28. No mention of the Russian Climate model INM-CM4 which gets things the closest to right. Wonder why Monckton has not included it?

    • The INM-CM4 model was not included in the report that I saw. Sorry about that.

      I have met the chief programmer for that model, and he is aware of our result. Perhaps he has factored it into the model, and perhaps that is why it is more accurate than everyone else’s.

      • Thank you very much. Perhaps you can explain why the model that fits the best is not the one quickly adopted or at least seriously looked at by the other climate modelers. My background is applied low temperature physics.

  29. The fictional uniformly heated black body temperature of Earth with 30% albedo is 255K. We are led to believe that the radiative greenhouse effect makes up the additional 33K, as if heat capacity does not matter.

    If the Lunar surface had negligible heat capacity, its global mean surface temperature would be around 47K lower, as the dark side would be approaching zero K. Because it does have some minor heat capacity, rotating it faster would mainly reduce the difference between dawn and dusk temperatures.

    The Lunar sunlit side is roughly in equilibrium with solar irradiance. Twice the illuminated disk area gives a mean equilibrium temperature for the sunlit side of 331.3K, or 322.7K with 10% albedo. With a dark side mean temperature of around 95K (4.6W/m^2), that gives a global mean of 208.8K. Close to what is observed. The impossible uniformly heated body model discounts both night time and rotation, and results in an artificially high black body equivalent temperature, by +113K globally.

    Earth has the handicap of 30% albedo on its sunlit side, but manages a far higher global mean than the Moon, by keeping its dark side so warm. Primarily by the huge thermal reservoirs of the oceans, and their hyper greenhouse effect of convecting to the surface at night, so that their surfaces barely cool during the night cycle.

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