The “Steel” Greenhouse versus the “Real” Greenhouse

Written by Ross McLeod

The actions of the advocates of Climate Science have certainly caused significant public controversy.

Perhaps the most interesting result has been the public discussion itself.  If one takes the time to view the posts and comments on many websites that present climate science one is left with the inescapable viewpoint that everyone is an expert and that ridicule and sarcasm are actually cogent arguments that have become more important than the discussion at hand.

Perhaps, before we continue, we could humbly remember that Einstein said:

All these fifty years of conscious brooding have brought me no nearer to the answer to the question, ‘What are light quanta?

Nowadays every Tom, Dick and Harry thinks he knows it, but he is mistaken.” (Albert Einstein, 1954)

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Climate Theory Fail: Carbon Dioxide Levels Rising but Temperatures Falling

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Principia Scientific International’s Professor Ole Humlum of the University of Oslo publishes the latest monthly climate data on his excellent site, Climate4you, and it makes scary reading for alarmist global warming climate scientists.

The official government data, as presented in the graphs below, is as telling as it is iconic: while the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) measured at Mauna Loa (the official reference source) continues its ceaseless rise the satellite records – month on month – continue to show our climate is cooling.

Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide 1958 to 2013


Temperature Anamoly 1979 to 2013

In other words, the real world ‘laboratory experiment’ of adding more CO2 into the atmosphere is showing that this trace gas (<0.4 %) is associated with cooling, not warming.

Of course, if you ask a biased government-funded climate scientist he/she will tell you this isn’t proof that the “greenhouse gas theory” is busted. They will, as always, point to their computer models that “prove” that CO2 “must” cause warming. So which is wrong: is it nature or the models?

For those readers looking for an independent expert’s explanation of the above we recommend a read of eminent Professor Karl Erdman’s latest article, ‘The Heating and Cooling of the Atmosphere of the Earth.’

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The Heating and Cooling of the Atmosphere of the Earth

Written by Karl L. Erdman Ph.D. Professor Emeritus UBC


The unrealistic picture of the regulation of the temperature of the earth that has led to the theory of Anthropogenic Global Warming has arisen because of a misunderstanding of how the energy arriving from the sun heats the earth. It was postulated that radiation arrives at the surface, heats it, and then the atmosphere is heated from the warmed surface by direct transfer of some of the energy by means of conduction, convection, and evaporation. The majority of the energy was thought to be transferred by radiation which was trapped by the “greenhouse gases” in the atmosphere in a layer at some distance from the surface. It was then thought to be re-radiated from this layer and equal amounts were radiated outward into space and back to the surface. The surface was postulated to be heated additionally by “backradiation” from this “blanket”. According to the progenitors of the theory of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) the surface is heated above the temperature calculated from the simplistic model used to define the black body temperature of the surface. In this note is a short description of what constitutes a black body and explains why the earth is not one and why the presence of the so-called greenhouse gases in the atmosphere leads to a drop in the temperature at the surface rather than a rise.

The detailed description outlines how the energy from the surface is transported to the level at which the radiation temperature measured from space corresponds to the physical temperature measured by the use of radiosondes and how this altitude if determined by energy arriving from the sun. It explains how the fraction of the energy arriving at the surface that is transformed into heat, and does not enter the atmosphere by physical means but leaves the surface by infrared radiation, is converted near to the surface into heat by means of the principal greenhouse gases, water vapor and carbon dioxide (CO2). The measured results of the variation of the surface temperature with the increased concentration of the “greenhouse gases,” of which water vapor contributes 95% to the so-called greenhouse effect and carbon dioxide only 4%, show that the temperature is lowered with an increase in their concentration rather than raised, and so if we wish to regard it as a blanket, it is an unusual one since it cools rather than heats. The idea that increasing the concentration of CO2 will warm the surface is not only wrong but has been experimentally determined to be a bit of malicious nonsense.

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New Energy Advice Website AWED Launched

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The Alliance for Wise Energy Decisions (AWED) is officially announcing its new website: AWED is an informal, non-partisan, non-profit coalition of North American individuals, organizations, communities, and businesses who are primarily concerned about the future of the electrical energy sector. 

AWED website

Principia Scientific International (PSI) has no hesitation in recommending the AWED website to our readers.The new site declares “At AWED, we believe that we do have environmental and energy issues, and that such technical matters should be resolved by using real Science.”

The site’s coordinator, John Droz Jr. says, “Our modest objective is simply to have the most informative energy website, anywhere.”

John advises that AWED’s objectives are to benefit citizens, scientists, elected representatives, etc. to make more informed energy and environmental decisions. The press announcement continues:

To save you time, and to assist you in being more effective, we’ve previewed over 5000 studies, reports, etc. and have tried to collect and organize just the most useful material available.

The volunteers who helped put this all together aren’t website or PR experts, so any and all constructive suggestions to make our new site even better, will be appreciated.

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Southwest U.S. Heatwave Cancelled. Reason? Too much Water Vapor

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Good news! The 2013 Southwestern US heat wave has been cancelled because a deluge of water vapor has moved into the region and cooled everything down.

Just two weeks ago we saw these dire warnings in the media:

Dangerous heat wave forecast in Southwest”

– USA TODAY Cancelled

Scorching Southwest heat wave could challenge all-time records

– Washington Post Cancelled

Weekend heat wave to bake western US; temps in southwestern cities to near 120

– StarTribune Cancelled

Why? The Southwestern USA has been inundated with water vapor, which doused the heat wave.

Here is the satellite photo of the water vapor distribution over North America June 27th, 2013, just two weeks ago when dire predictions of an unprecedented Southwestern heat wave scorched the media. 

Satellite Photo Indicating water vapor

Here is the satellite photo of the water vapor distribution over North America July 11th, 2013, just yesterday and all warnings of an eminent Southwestern heat wave have vanished from the media. 

GOES satellite photo two weeks later

What happened? Water vapor messed up the heat wave!

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Sign of the Times? Peak Oil Website Shuts Down

Written by Anthony Wile, The Daily Bell

For years, we’ve been pointing out that Peak Oil is a dominant social theme, a scarcity meme used by the powers-that-be to reinforce the US petrodollar and generally to control economic and sociopolitical elements of society.

Anthony Wile

And now comes word via various news reports including a story at MarketWatch that a main Internet proponent of the Peak Oil myth – The Oil Drum – is shutting its doors.

Here’s how MarketWatch describes it:

… A website created and frequented by advocates of “peak oil,” is closing its doors July 31 after an eight-year run. The site will be kept as a repository of old articles, but will no longer offer new ones, according to a post on the site dated July 3.

The decision was reached thanks to “scarcity of new content caused by a dwindling number of contributors” and the cost of running the site, the post said. The post garnered more than 700 comments from readers mourning the site’s virtual death. Commenters suggested “donate” buttons and other ideas to raise money.

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Greenhouse Gas Theory is False

Written by Dr. Pierre R Latour

Pierre R Latour, PE, PhD Chemical Engineer, July 11, 2013

I wish to provide you with sound scientific and chemical engineering analysis of the faults with the Greenhouse Gas Theory, GHGT, proposed to drive Anthropogenic Global Warming and Climate Change, AGW & CC, especially as it pertains to CO2. I want to arm you for this huge, ongoing debate. I seek and receive no financial support from any government, business or organization; I finance my own work in retirement.

For the life of me I cannot get a solid, consistent grip on the underlying physics supporting the notion first proclaimed by James Hansen, Science, 1981, atmospheric CO2 has any quantitatively verified effect on Earth’s temperature. It is the duty of AGW & CC promoters to provide it, not skeptics like me. So I claim political leaders promoting GHGT have not explained the physics and quantified the effect to my satisfaction. They make claims and charges with little or no relevant evidence to back it up. In American law courts these are called frivolous claims and dismissed (thrown out). When their expensive schemes collapse due to foreseeable engineering consequences, their claim they are unintended consequences rings hollow.

While it is not my job as skeptic, I will offer eight objections to their GHG Theory, each of which falsify it. It is their job to prove me wrong. I will present my assertions in simple terms with justifications; I have detailed chemical engineering mathematical analysis verified by experiment to support them.

  1. GHGT science is settled, consensus is established, skeptics and deniers are crackpots. Wrong.

  2. GHGT effect 15C – (-18C) = 33C is wrong.

  3. GHGT says atmosphere acts like a blanket. False.

  4. CO2 is green plant food.

  5. GHGT neglects the effect of absorbing CO2 on incoming solar irradiance.

  6. Kiehl-Trenberth Energy Budget back radiation is false.

  7. Thermostat adjusting fossil fuel combustion will never work.

  8. Modeling temperature data is worthless.

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The Relentless Pseudo-science of WUWT

Written by Ross Macleod

The Steel Greenhouse as proposed by Willis Eschenbach and published twice on the “Watts Up With That” website is a misinterpretation of the fundamental rules of physics governing the radiative transfer of energy.

steel greenhouse

Below are 2 statements of this fundamental principle from 2 modern physics references.

It is trivial to use this fundamental principle to prove the “Steel Greenhouse” proposition as proposed and its ability to double the energy flux is a complete fallacy.

The energy an object absorbs comes from its environment, which consists of other bodies that radiate energy. If an object is at a temperature T, and its surroundings are at a temperature T0, the net energy gained or lost each second by the object as a result of radiation is –

Pnet = A ξ σ (T4 – T04).”

College Physics 7th Edition

While a body at absolute temperature is radiating, its surroundings at temperature Ts are also radiating, and the body absorbs some of this radiation.

If it is in equilibrium with its surroundings, T = Ts and the rates of radiation and absorption must be equal.

For this to be true, the rate of absorption must be given in general by H = A ξ σ Ts 4. Then the net rate of radiation from a body at temperature T with its surroundings at temperature Ts is:-

Hnet = A ξ σ (T4 – Ts4).”

Sears and Zemansky’s – University Physics With Modern Physics – Young and Freedman.

The “Steel Greenhouse” proposal is a sphere with an internal source of energy capable of causing it to radiate at 235 Watts per square metre.

A steel shell is then closely “fitted” and it is claimed this action causes the sphere to increase in temperature until it emits double the original flux at a temperature that is approximately 1.1892 (the fourth root of 2) times its original temperature.

It is assumed ξ is unity.

Let’s analyse this proposal from first principles.

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Rising Carbon Dioxide Levels Causing Desert ‘Greening’

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Rise in the level of carbon dioxide in the air is causing desert “greening” and has increased foliage cover by 11 percent reports Sam Lehman in (July 9, 2013)

Increased CO2 causing desert greening

Up until now the negative aspects of rising levels of carbon dioxide have been highlighted in almost all studies conducted on this matter. A new study, based on satellite observations, CSIRO, in collaboration with the Australian National University (ANU) reported that the rising levels of carbon dioxide have caused deserts to start greening and  increased foliage cover by 11 percent from 1982-2010 across parts of the arid areas studied in Australia, North America, the Middle East and Africa.

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Two Alarmist Professors Suspects in Climate Fraud

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Professor Will Steffen, Executive Director of ANU Climate Change Institute College of Asia and the Pacific and The Australian National University and Professor Lesley Hughes Head of the Department of Biological Sciences at Macquarie University are named and shamed for alleged fraudulent public presentations last month.

In a damning open letter (July 9, 2013) by Australian scientists, Dr Judy Ryan and Dr Marjorie Curtis, professors Steffen and Hughes are being called out for their biased and unscientific presentations given at the Canberra Community Forum on June 17th 2013. The professors are accused of not only making “misleading” and “false” statements but it is being suggested their bogus climate claims may rise to the level of actual fraud.

Drs Ryan and Curtis have now made their letter open to the wider scientific community and the public so they may judge for themselves how egregious are the cherry picked claims of professors Steffen and Hughes.

Below we publish the full Ryan/Curtis letter so our readers can get the full picture of this sorry tale:

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Beware of Gasoline Phase Separation!

Written by Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser

Phase separation of gasoline — avoid it if you can! I’ll tell you why and have a simple experiment that lets you measure the ethanol content in your gasoline too.

Phase separation (PS) is what you can get from the ethanol content in your gasoline. It can damage your engine and possibly get you stranded at an out of way place. It is more likely to occur with lubricant-added gasoline used for two-cycle engines commonly found in ATVs, outboard motors, motorcycles, snowmobiles and other equipment with small engines, but can also happen with regular gasoline.


New” Gasoline

Gasoline without any ethanol used to be what you got when filling up your gas tank a decade ago or so, but the wannabe-savers-of-the-world had a “better” idea. Why not dilute the gasoline with ethanol. At first your “new” fuel was limited to an ethanol content of 5% (E5). Then the US Environmental Agency (EPA) mandated up to 10% ethanol content (E10) and as of late EPA is talking about a 15% ethanol (E15) mandate.

If you have experienced problems with E5 or E10 gasoline, E15 could just about be disastrous. The main reason is that the likelihood of PS occurring increases exponentially with the ethanol content in the gasoline.

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Scientist Fired by University for Exposing Truth on Climate Fraud

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Highly qualified and well-respected professor, academic teacher and climate scientist, Murry Salby has been performing important and groundbreaking research exposing myths about the so-called “settled science” around greenhouse gases and their impact on climate. Uniquely, his work is based solely on empirical evidence rather the dubious ideological whims of post-normal climate ‘science’. Other leading researchers have validated his findings and, as such, Salby is now very much a thorn in the side of promoters of man-made global warming alarmism.

Murry Salby

For simply pursuing the truth, as any good scientist should do, Salby has been fired by his employer, the University of Macquarie, Australia.

This is despite the fact Macquarie University had originally appointed Salby as their Chairman of Climate Science. He is a scientist of such repute that he has held visiting professorships at Paris, Stockholm, Jerusalem, and Kyoto, and he’s worked at the Bureau of Meterology in Australia.

Principia Scientific International (PSI) is so horrified and angered by the retaliation of pro-green anti-scientist administrators at Macquairie University that we have secured a generous donation from our publisher, Stairway Press, to sponsor Professor Salby’s visit, if he agrees, to London in October to make a high profile public presentation of this attack on science.

As such, PSI and other supporters of traditional scientific methods will ensure this outrageous attack on an honorable researcher will be exposed at a key British climate science gathering.

Below is Professor Salby’s outline of the backstory of his victimization proving that essential academic freedoms in Australia are being supplanted by unprincipled self-serving promoters of Big Green.

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The Atmosphere Is Not A Glass Greenhouse

Written by Carl Brehmer

The design of Curt Wilson’s experiment–a little glass greenhouse over top of a heat source–perpetuates the idea that the thermodynamics of a gaseous atmosphere tens of km thick can be modeled using a glass dome (as do all of the mathematical models that portray the atmosphere as a sheet of glass suspended some distance above the surface.)  What one cannot learn about the thermodynamics of the 11,000 meter thick gaseous troposphere by studying a solid piece of glass is one of the fundamental elements of the first law of thermodynamics.

the supposed greenhouse effect

 Unlike a solid piece of glass, air is compressible, therefore “work” can be done on air which will raise its temperature and “work” is done on every kg of air that is pulled down from aloft to replace air that is ascending, expanding and cooling.  These two processes are symmetrical; one cannot exist without the other.  Ascending air cannot expand and cool unless there is an equal amount of air somewhere else descending, being compressed and warming.  The equilibrium temperature of the “Standard Troposphere” is actually about -20.6 C and can be found at an altitude of ~5.5 km.  The temperature of the tropospheric air above this altitude is lower by the same amount ( about 35 C) as the temperature of the tropospheric air below that altitude is higher due to the energy imbalance created by this “adiabatic process.”  Remember that the “adiabatic process” does not create nor destroy energy but rather just moves it from one place to another.

      So, in reality there exists within the atmosphere opposing movements of heat–four are spontaneous and one is active.  The spontaneous heat transfer modes of conduction, convection, latent heat transfer and radiation that are all moving heat from the “hot source” of the ground and lower troposphere upward towards the “cold sink” of the upper troposphere.  At the same time the adiabatic process (the active mode of heat transfer) through the vehicle of “work” is moving heat from the the “cold sink” of the upper troposphere down to the “hot source” of the ground and lower troposphere.  This is in line with the “Clausius Statement” “Heat can never pass from a colder to a warmer body without some other change, connected therewith, occurring at the same time.”  Of course the “other change” is the uneven solar heating of the surface and surface level air, which acts like the early refrigerators that were driven by a propane burner that cycled on and off.  At any rate the result of this tug-of-war between the one active mode and the four passive modes of heat transfer is that the dry adiabatic lapse rate of 9.8 C/km is reduced to an average of 6.5 C/km.

      The “greenhouse effect” hypothesis denies the fact that the lower troposphere is actively being heated by the “work” being done on descending air by ascending air and instead insists that the ground and lower troposphere are actively being heated by “back radiation” from “greenhouse gases”.  For example James Hansen in his 1981 paper – Climate Impact of increasing Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide referred to the “adiabatic lapse rate” as a radiative vertical temperature gradient” as opposed to a “work” induced vertical temperature gradient.  The difference may seem subtle but the former violates the second law of thermodynamics while the latter does not.  IR radiation cannot spontaneously create a temperature differential within a body of matter, such as the troposphere, “through warming the lower atmosphere and cooling the upper atmosphere.” (Spencer 2013)  This would mean that the same trace gases are having opposite affects at different places within the same atmosphere.  In reality, it is the adiabatic process, via the “work” done by ascending air on descending air, that warms the lower troposphere and cools the upper troposphere just as is taught in basic climatology courses.

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At what concentration does CO2 become toxic to humans?

Written by Dr. Darko Butina


Or, What is the difference between the engine that runs the human body and the combustion engine? None!

The molecule carbon dioxide (CO2), a trace gas in our atmosphere is just about reaching concentration of 400 parts per million or 0.04%, as measured at the Mauna Loa Observatory, better known as MLO. The current public view of CO2 is that of a villain causing practically everything that is wrong on our planet, from prostitution to tsunamis, from schizophrenia to earthquakes, from overheating to overcooling, from floods to droughts and so on.

Since well over one thousand peer reviewed papers say so, since all of the major television and newspapers outlets say so, since lot of national academies say so, surely it must be so? Surely, to accuse someone of mass murder and even genocide one would expect overwhelming evidence against the CO2 molecule; not by thousands of unreliable witnesses that never met or saw the murderer, but by the hard forensic data, in this case experimental data.

Since the standard definition of excellence in the climate sciences is ‘the less you know about CO2 and the calibrated thermometer, the more eminent scientist you are’, I will humbly present to you some basic facts about CO2 that all those “ignorant specialist” in respiratory mechanisms and carbon chemistry are using in their daily jobs of pushing the frontiers of science forward, not backwards.

This report is about toxicity of CO2 and I will answer that infamous $64,000 question, or the way that the things are going at the moment, $64 trillion question: At what concentration does CO2 become toxic to humans?

So let me start with the first question raised in the title of this report. You see, there is no difference between the engine that runs the human body and the combustion engine – they both run on the molecules that are based on the element called carbon with the symbol C, they both need the O2 molecules to break the fuel down to smaller chunks, or rather oxidise the fuel/food that is needed for the engine to run, and they both produce CO2 as a product of that oxidation process. For every single carbon that enters that engine (human body or combustion engine) one molecule of CO2 comes out.

Let us now turn to the medical sciences and our knowledge of the respiratory mechanism that is the key to our survival. For a long time scientists working in the field of human physiology have wandered why evolutionary forces made humans breathe out and assign the function of breathing in and out to the brain?Whether you are awake or asleep, every breath in is followed by the breath out – why is that?

We could easily understand breathing in – the human body cannot function without oxygen and therefore we should be OK by just breathing in. The answer became obvious once we realised that all life is based on the carbon atom with the molecules of DNA and proteins being the two main engines of that life. Since everything that supports life is based on carbon, it follows that the major fuel which runs the human engine needs to be based on carbon. For clarity, whether you eat meat or are vegetarian, you are consuming carbon! And then the knowledge of chemistry comes in – oxygen function is to ‘oxidise’ and since all the food is based on carbon, the result is CO2: C + O2 = CO2. It therefore follows that inside your body lots of CO2 has been produced as a by-product which needs to be taken out of the body – hence breathing out. As any textbook on respiration will tell you:

“The primary function of the lungs is to obtain oxygen for use by the body’s cells and eliminate the carbon dioxide that cells produce”.

The figure at the top of the page below shows the general principle of the exchanges of different gases that occur between the lungs and the blood stream:

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