Not Again, Virginia! Greenhouse Gas Theory a Self-Licking Ice Cream
Written by PSI staff
With an excellent discussion underway, unfortunately – but not surprisingly – Anthony Watts abruptly closed comments on his latest article attacking Principia Scientific International (PSI). From his readers’ feedback it is clear Mr. Watts went off half cocked with his mischaracterization that PSI had “misinterpreted” a revealing NASA press release about CO2, solar flares, and the thermosphere.
Mr Watts is probably aware that he has no valid response to many of the points made by PSI members in various papers and articles.
Working overtime to hide that elephant with its umbrella is climatologist, Dr.Roy Spencer. Not only did a world-leading expert in thermodynamics, Dr. Pierre R Latour, point out Spencer’s errors with his ‘No, Virginia’ rebuttal to Spencer’s ‘Yes, Virginia’ blog post we’ve seen many other highly-respected scientists disagreeing with Dr. Spencer.
UC Berkeley Discredits Spencer’s Infinite Heat Sink
A look at a thermodynamics physics text from UC Berkley proves, using standard physics, that cold does not heat up warm even in the presence of “backradiation.” Problem #1023 shows that a radiation shield does not cause a source to become hotter if its radiation is trapped, and Problem #1026 shows that a sphere surrounded by a shell simply warms up the shell until the shell emits the same energy as the sphere, without requiring the sphere to become hotter and with the presence of backradiation. What Spencer, Watts, Willis, et al mistakenly believe, is that in order for something warm to heat up something cool, the warmer thing has to heat up itself! As absurd a proposition as an ice cream licking itself.
Astrophysicist, Joseph E. Postma, adds his own take on the flaw with Dr. Spencer’s “two plates” thought experiment:
“A source held at a constant temperature, because it is either an infinite heat sink or it has a continuous input has the same result – it will only heat something else to its same temperature, and it will not heat itself.”
Postma explains that whether a source as an infinite sink, or a source as a constant temperature with continuous input holding it at that temperature, they are nonetheless identical. He adds:
“It is why physicists invented the idea of an infinite heat sink in the first place. Again, look at problem 1026 from the UC Berkley link– this problem can either be plane parallel walls, or “plates”, or it can be Willis’ shells game [earlier WUWT article in defense of the GHE]. Look at the result – nothing heats itself up. The energy from the source doesn’t heat itself up some more in order to heat a cooler thing.”
That, says Postma, is the essence of all the pro-GHE arguments – that in order for something warm to heat up something cooler, the hotter thing has to heat up some more. What Principia Scientific International demonstrates is that there is simply no consistent, rational, mathematically valid, or scientific explanation for the GHE. “There isn’t because the GHE isn’t actually a thing, but a desire, “ bemoans Postma.
Supporters of the traditional scientific method acknowledge PSI rightly disdains those “desires” of Spencer, Lindzen, Watts, etc. to preserve their status quo. PSI chose to tread a tougher path away from that supposed “consensus” yet is meeting many new like-minded thinkers along the way.
For sure, even if conceding PSI (the “Slayers”) were right might be too much to countenance, this trio could at least accept that after 16 years of flatlining global temps – backdropped by a 40 percent rise in atmospheric CO2 concentrations in recent decades – the GHE is looking very shaky indeed. Then there’s the Vostok ice core data proving that for the past 150,000 years any rise in levels of CO2 occurs AFTER rises in temperatures. From these facts alone it is evident Nature herself is telling us CO2 doesn’t cause warming.
Cloudier, moist Regions Cooler than Dry Regions
Here is a question to ponder. If water vapor supposedly raises average surface temperatures by about 30 degrees due to a “greenhouse gas effect” then surely we could expect some dry areas to be only, say, 25 degrees warmer, while moist regions could be, say, 35 degrees warmer. But do we see moist areas being 10 degrees warmer than dry ones, other factors being similar? Are tropical rain forests hotter than dry tropical desert regions? If not, as real world data indicates, then how could the greenhouse conjecture be valid?
Performing real world experiments to further validate the above PSI researchers confirm that moist, cloudy regions of our planet are cooler than dry regions (which are similar in other respects). This finding also runs completely contrary to what the IPCC, Anthony Watts and others are claiming what water vapor does, namely to warm the surface by about 30 degrees. Their error, in part, is their omission to understand that their models (operating in 24 hour twilight) do not factor in the differences between night and day.
We must all see there is a distinction between moist cloudy regions being cooler than dry regions IN DAYLIGHT, but warmer at night. That would lead on to having to highlight that water vapor RELOCATES heat away from the surface, ie, the surface is cooled by the water vapor. We are talking here about DELAYED COOLING of the surface by the action of the water cycle. The mechanism is LATENT HEAT not a carbon dioxide-driven “greenhouse gas effect.”
So, in who’s interest is it to deny full debate of the GHE when we all know the GHE is the basis of alarm? If we’re critical of alarm we must automatically be critical of the GHE, because they are one and the same. Haven’t certain people (even “skeptics”) actually made careers for themselves via the alarmist debate? Would it actually be in their interest to have the alarmist debate disappear by removing its basis, the GHE?
Of course, Anthony Watts can do all he likes to shut down debate on his blog. However, there is simply no consistent, rational, mathematically valid, or scientific explanation of the GHE. So we say it’s back to you Roy and Anthony.