National Academies and the (non) Greenhouse Gas Effect: Part 4

The first three parts of this series* showed the academic fraud that for 33 years promoted the greenhouse gas effect. The articles caused outrage among believers in the cult as evidenced by the comments section of my blog. But with some of the cultists having come out to openly debate we can better gauge the intellectual bankruptcy of their arguments.

Carbon Dioxide Not the Devil He Claims

Carbon Dioxide Not the Devil He Claims

Not only are there so many assumptions made about what is the greenhouse gas effect (GHE) but what strikes me most about these discussions is how believers in the ‘theory’  avoid addressing why, if this is all ‘settled science,’ there is no standard definition. Moreover, the closer we look at it the less it is clear just how this ‘theory’ even operates. Pointedly, despite around $100 billion spent on climate research, this cornerstone of the man-made global warming science hasn’t even been validated by any objective test in earth’s atmosphere.

What has triggered the furor is my analysis of the seminal 13,000-word report from 1979 by the National Academy of Sciences. The study is often referred to as the Charney Report and was commissioned by the U.S. Government to supposedly explain how carbon dioxide (CO2) will impact future climate. From our modern perspective – 33 years on – it seems incredible that such an in-depth report should fail to mention the greenhouse gas effect (GHE). This is especially incongruous being that climatologists will glibly tell you the theory has unimpeachable provenance stretching back 150 years to the formative era of radiative physics and Arrhenius and Tyndall.

But it isn’t just the absence of any mention of the GHE that is odd. There is also the  failure to identify the mechanism by which CO2 is supposed to generate additional warming at the earth’s surface. Today, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)  claims ‘back radiation’ heating as the mechanism by which CO2  adds additional heat to our planet. But that term, just like the GHE,  is absent from the Charney Report. Thus an objective reading of the report adds, not diminishes, my skepticism especially knowing that the ‘best evidence’ for the phenomenon is nothing more than a ‘toy’ model generated by a NASA computer, as adeptly shown by Professor Claes Johnson. Likewise, none of the GHE chicanery is getting past astrophysicist, Joseph E Postma who provides his own assessment on climateofsophistry.com. Postma observes:

“The one thing which has become very clear, is that the GHE doesn’t actually have a consistent explanation or description.  We have seen it as the backradiation ‘active heating’ mechanism, where radiation from a cold source adds serially with the radiation from the Sun in order to amplify the temperature generation; we have seen it as the “delayed cooling” mechanism, where GHE advocates wish to be in compliance with the Laws of Thermodynamics, and so backradiation does not cause “active heating”, but merely serves to reduce the rate at which energy is lost, particularly during the nighttime.  In my last paper, we proved that neither of these things actually occur because, by definition, these things should be quantifiable and observable in their effect on the temperature, and they were not.”

What the NAS report did stress was that uncertainties abounded wherever the scientists looked. The authors admitted they lacked sufficient real world data and so had to rely on guesstimates from computer models. From such speculation emerged the view that  an otherwise benign trace gas (CO2) may warm the climate. But the  caveat in ‘Charney’ was that CO2 might actually cause cooling, something the IPCC and GHE advocates would rather you didn’t know.

Aficionados mostly from Skepticalscience.com were having none of it. My blog filled with irate accusatory comments from them. In response I pointed out that nowhere in this major report were the best brains in the business able to put a name to what they described. If it was the greenhouse gas theory then surely an in-depth 13,000-word report on atmospheric carbon dioxide would at least make some passing reference to it. Secondly, and perhaps more damaging to the credibility of the ‘theory’  is that the NAS overlooked to mention ‘back radiation’ heating as the mechanism that could trigger the heat adding phenomenon, either. But upon further investigation we may have found out why it was no oversight. The concept of  ‘back radiation’ heating seems to have been invented years later, according to Dr. Judith Curry, in the reports of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). It is this dubious concept that the ‘Slayers’ have insisted falls foul of the laws the thermodynamics.  Dismissing ‘back radiation’ heating in no uncertain terms is popular skeptic climatologist, Dr. Tim Ball who noted,

“… [radiation] merely resonating in place does not imply reflecting energy back at the source….it is so difficult to argue with the absurd Alice looking glass science.” While Georgia Tech. climatologist,  Dr. Judith Curry conceded, ““Back radiation is a phrase, one that I don’t use myself, and it is not a word that is used in technical radiative transfer studies. Lets lose the back radiation terminology, we all agree on that.”

Thus my thesis is a simple one:  when the best brains from thirty years ago commissioned to explain what CO2 does in the climate overlook to identify the  GHE or it’s mechanism, ‘back radiation heating,’ then there is something seriously awry with the provenance of this ‘settled science.’

What further stokes my cynicism is how much uncertainty the Charney Report expressed about how our climate actually works. It seems utterly plausible to infer that uncertainty about the GHE is the reason why the panel of scientists that included James Hansen and Richard Lindzen omitted to include it.  Even now when you learn that Hansen’s version of the GHE is very different to Lindzen’s then you can understand the reticence of us cynics.

You don’t have to be a scientist to feel uneasy when these ‘experts’ can’t even agree on the name!  Depending on which afficianado you talk to,  some will tell you the name ‘greenhouse effect’ is  misleading because ‘no one means the atmosphere acts just like a greenhouse.’ But, yes, many of the top authorities do. There are no less than  53 bogus authority statements online declaring that Earth’s atmosphere DOES act ‘like a greenhouse.’ You might imagine a similarly hostile religious debate between Shia and Sunni Muslims,  or Protestants and Catholics. But instead of fighting over interpretations of a biblical script these cultists argue over the computer models.

The ‘blasphemy’ in my series of articles was daring to prove that their ‘settled science’ emperor has no clothes. Only yesterday (December 27, 2012) James Hansen sent a protest letter to the editor published in the Wall Street Journal. A skeptical article the previous week by Matt Ridley in WSJ (December 19) titled “Cooling Down the Fears of Climate Change” upset him. Hansen called it “another misleading attempt to present a distorted view of the consensus that exists among the vast majority of the community of science experts”. He countered with his own speculations for GHE ‘back radiation’ warming (with a 68% probability). Hansen claims “this agrees with IPCC estimates.”

However, 33 years ago when contributing to the NAS report Hansen, Lindzen and others did not attribute any warming, as per IPCC ‘science’ to such ‘back radiation’ heating. But worse yet, if you examine how back then Hansen, Lindzen and others describe the mechanism for this ‘theory’ you can understand why there is so much confusion.

From all this ‘confusion’ it is no wonder why any thinking scientist could believe that any gas could ‘store’  energy even though the absorption/emission cycle of carbon dioxide is one billionth of a second – less than the blink of an eye. At Principia Scientific International (PSI) hundreds of experts are aghast that such a small bit of radiation briefly bouncing around the atmosphere before it escapes to outer space should be accorded anything other than a very negligible impact within the overall system.

For PSI researchers  the real emphasis should be on the very powerful energy storage potential of water and the relentless dynamo of the hydrological cycle. Speak to anyone who glibly spouts to you that the greenhouse gas effect is real and the chances are they have no clue that there is no less than 130 years’ worth of solar energy stored in latent heat in the liquid of our oceans. They are likely also oblivious to the fact there is around 7 days’ worth of solar energy stored in water vapor latent heat of our atmosphere.

We have seen in this series of articles that the science academies and their well-funded researchers are at odds with independent scientists (i.e. those not on the global warming gravy train). Here are just a few comments from top scientists weary of this whole scam. Tens of thousands share their sentiments. All too often GHE believers have wrongly assumed that the properties of latent heat and other elements of the Ideal Gas laws are the GHE. They then casually toss in the bogus belief that ‘colder makes warm even warmer.’ To fudge that they then seek to add any and all admitted uncertainties and claim them as also part of the ‘signal’ for the GHE. This is in large part how they concoct the illusion of the ‘settled science’ they often refer to. GHE advocates just don’t want to let go of this unscientific and illogical conflation.

As Professor Takeda Kunihiko, vice-chancellor of the Institute of Science and Technology Research at Chubu University in Japan says, CO2 emissions make absolutely no difference one way or the other – every scientist knows this, but it doesn’t pay to say so.”

*This article is one of a series on this subject. The full set are found as follows: Part OnePart TwoPart Three, Part FourPart FivePart 6

18 Comments

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18 responses to “National Academies and the (non) Greenhouse Gas Effect: Part 4

  1. Pingback: National Academies and the (non) Greenhouse Gas Effect: Part 4 « Skeptics Chillin'

  2. Pingback: Another Alarmist Author Admits Spreading Greenhouse Gas Bunkum | johnosullivan

  3. Pingback: US National Academies and the (non) Greenhouse Gas Effect: Part Three | johnosullivan

  4. Pingback: U.S. National Academies and the (non) Greenhouse Gas Effect (Part Two) | johnosullivan

  5. Pingback: Breaking: U.S. National Academies Find Greenhouse Effect Doesn’t Exist | johnosullivan

  6. Rob Honeycutt

    John,
    Show me just ONE paper that Tim Ball has published on climate change in a major, respected peer-reviewed journal that rejects the idea of anthropogenic climate change.

    • John O'Sullivan

      Rob, that’s the usual strawman ad hom smear all you alarmists resort to when you can’t fight facts with counter arguments based on facts. The very fact Tim Ball as just wiped two Canadian courtroom floors with prominent junk climate scientists Michael Mann and Andrew Weaver far outweighs any ‘pal review’ comedic journal. Two courtroom victories is the Canadian government’s ultimate seal of approval for our brand of junk science busting.

    • LOL,

      when are you guys going to realize that the CAGW conjecture are based on UNTESTIBLE thus UNVERIFIED LONG into the future temperature models the ones the IPCC published with idiotic fanfare to the ingnorant public in the 2001 and 2007?

      You like Glenn Tamblyn who forgot that there is a certain way to do good science research and that is to basically follow the scientific method.The one warmists have not been using much these days as they are in a thrall with a trace gas with a very small IR absorption range and partially overlapped by Water Vapor that dominates in the tropics where the main concentration of solar energy is most abundant.

      The IPCC big mistake was to post a few short range predictions in 1990 that have miserably failed thus putting into question right from the start in the mid to late 1990’s on why continue to pursue in supporting a dead conjecture?

      t has been shown to be without scientific merit at least 10 years ago!

  7. Edmonton Al

    Mr Rob Honeycutt hare is my question to the GHE believers.
    First some info:
    CO2 Fraction#1 4/10,000 (this is used for the total of CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere it’s about 400 parts in 1,000,000)

    CO2 Fraction#2 4/100 (4% the best estimate of how much man has put into the Earth’s atmosphere)

    The Result shows how much Man has contributed, 1 part in 62,500.

    Even if we put into the calculator man made CO2 as high as 5% [5/100] the result is still staggering it’s just 1 part in 50,000.

    So what is the fuss about!!!

    How are the Man-made Global Warming alarmists going to control NATURAL CO2?
    I REPEAT; HOW ARE THE GLOBAL WARMING/CLIMATE CHANGE ALARMISTS GOING TO CONTROL NATURAL CO2??????????

    See also:

    Jonathan DuHamel: AGW Contribution to the “Greenhouse Effect” expressed as a % of Total (Water Vapour INCLUDED)

    Screenshot of 1990’s United States Department of Energy Report with ratio of Man Made and Natural CO2 sources.

  8. Edmonton Al

    John O’
    Please give us all an update on the Mann, Weaver court cases.
    How they were resolved or whatever.
    Thanks.

    • John O'Sullivan

      Al,
      I am advised that Mann and Weaver are discontinuing their actions pending the court’s formal dismissal of their claims. However, I understand that in Canada, unlike the US legal system, such cases cannot merely be ‘dropped.’ As such we await the court’s imminent decisions in finding in favor of Tim in both matters and Tim’s libel attorney is now filing hefty counterclaims.

  9. Mervyn

    I wish to congratulate you, John Sullivan, on an excellent four part expose of this GHE scam that has been used to underpin the IPCC’s mantra.

    It is high time that law enforcement agencies around the world began taking action against those climate charlatans engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct pushing the catastrophic man-made global warming scam based on the GHE supposition … for that is all the GHE is, a supposition … because it is not a proper theory, and it is certainly not a law of physics.

  10. Pingback: ” CO2 emissions make absolutely no difference one way or the other” … | pindanpost

  11. Pingback: National Academies and the (non) Greenhouse Gas Effect: Part 5 | johnosullivan

  12. Pingback: National Academies and the (non) Greenhouse Gas Effect: Part 6 | johnosullivan

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