by: Geoffrey H Sherrington
Assume for discussion that there has been a change of 1⁰C in the customary global near-surface air temperature, GAST, over the last century. There have been many assertions that this has produced changes. The strength of assertions is greater when a mathematical relation between temperature and the alleged change is established. Here are some relationships to ponder, for the last century or for a significant or available shorter time.
For a 1⁰C change in global temperature –
- By how many millimeters does the sea level surface height change?
- By how many ppm does atmospheric CO₂ change?
- By how many tonnes does the weight of terrestrial vegetation, like forests, change?
- By how much does the pH of the oceans change?
- By how many sq km does the average area of cloud cover change?
- What change is there to the accumulated cyclone index, ACE?
- What is the net change to the globalnumber of –
- Land animals
- Marine algae
- By how many Watt per square metre does the Top of Atmosphere TOA radiation balance change?
- By how many tonnes does the weight of ice change –
- Over land
- Floating on sea
- Grounded over sea
- By how much does total precipitable rainfall TPW change?
- By what number does the number of large bush fires change?
- By how many tonnes do yields of major food crops change, expressed as tonnes available per person, for example
The number of properties claimed to be changed by global warming is now in the several hundreds range.
Many more cases could be added to this list of a dozen assertions. However, this list contains the main ones discussed by agencies such as NASA and other anti-warming agencies like NGOs.
NASA has a web page that mentions some effects of its view of climate change.
Some NASA text follows, to highlight the uncertainty and lack of quantification even for a small part of the Earth like the USA.
- The length of the frost-free season (and the corresponding growing season) has been increasing nationally since the 1980s, with the largest increases occurring in the western United States, affecting ecosystems and agriculture. Across the United States, the growing season is projected to continue to lengthen.
- Average U.S. precipitation has increased since 1900, but some areas have had increases greater than the national average, and some areas have had decreases. More winter and spring precipitation is projected for the northern United States, and less for the Southwest, over this century.
- Droughts in the Southwest and heat waves (periods of abnormally hot weather lasting days to weeks) everywhere are projected to become more intense, and cold waves less intense everywhere.
- The intensity, frequency and duration of North Atlantic hurricanes, as well as the frequency of the strongest (Category 4 and 5) hurricanes, have all increased since the early 1980s.
With the proper use of science that affects government policy measures as this does, qualitative assertions are steadily replaced by mathematical relationships that can be tested and verified. Assertions remain unverified assertions. Mathematical relations assist projections into the future.
Therefore, the ability of climate scientists to quantify these dozen relationships is a test of whether the current understanding of science is good enough to sway policy. They are among the most fundamental relationships to the hypotheses of global warming and climate change and have been for the past 30 years.
This is really a test of bluster versus hard scientific advancement. Fail this test and you should bid “climate change alarmism” goodbye.
Should I take a bet that NOT ONE of these dozen equations has been quantified mathematically?
10th September 2020