On Taxing Air
Written by Anthony Bright-Paul
I was reading this excellent book ‘Taxing Air’ for the second time and for the second time I was stopped dead in my tracks by some words on page 69. It says that the common ground among scientists includes that ‘Carbon Dioxide is a Greenhouse gas and warms the lower atmosphere.’ Whoa! Whoa! Bob Carter, Spooner et al, and the composite authors of this book.
Surely this is a printing error, or something written in haste. What is generally agreed is that Carbon Dioxide is 0.04% of the atmosphere and reacts to the infrared radiation from the earth; and it is this radiation that warms the molecules of carbon dioxide. So it is the gas that is warmed by the radiation. Even the Warmists do not really claim any more, because obviously a gas cannot heat itself; the atmosphere, the temperature of which is always varying – cannot heat itself.
So yes, the Carbon Dioxide molecules are warmed by the infrared radiation, all 0.04% of the atmosphere. But being a gas these molecules are also subject to convection; that is to say that as they warm these molecules rise up and cool, as does the whole of the lower atmosphere.
So that begs the question: What warms the lower atmosphere? Now we come to what warmists and sceptics do agree on. They agree that the sun warms the earth and the oceans, as radiation from the Sun encounters mass. It is also generally agreed that water has a great heat capacity and that the warm oceans in particular warm the lower atmosphere. Is that OK? Not quite. And the cold oceans cool the lower atmosphere. Is that better?
The land is more complex. Hot sands warm, while cold rocks cool the atmosphere. Hot tar warms, while frosty runways cool the air. A leafy wood is often cooler than an open field or lawn. Snow-bound Siberian wastes are cooling, while the Gobi desert by day is warming the atmosphere – all by conduction.
The atmosphere is being warmed or being cooled every instant of every day. The gases of the atmosphere are being warmed primarily by contact, by conduction. So where does that leave the 0.04% of the atmosphere that is Carbon Dioxide? In order to answer this question let us ask ourselves another question that I first saw posed in the book ‘Slaying the Sky Dragon: Death of the Greenhouse Gas Theory.’ Why does the Sun warm the Earth? Answer: Because it is hotter.’ Is that agreed? Because the Sun is hotter than the Earth.
Therein lies a principle. So theoretically if the molecules of Carbon Dioxide gas are hotter than the other gases, then theoretically it might be possible for the teeniest-weeniest warming to occur. But it is as remote as swimmers off the coasts of the Riviera who might occasionally piddle while bathing; it is as remote as the possibility that they are warming the Mediterranean!
It is even more remote when one considers all the facts. How likely is it for the Carbon Dioxide molecules that have been warmed by infrared radiation, how likely is it that they are hotter than the surrounding molecules that have been warmed by conduction? Even for a non-scientist, basing everything on direct observation, – not very likely at all. Consider this: Place your hand on a hot radiator. The heat is immediate to the touch. Hover the back of your hand close to the radiator. Do you experience the same level, the same intensity of heat? Not at all. The heat experienced from radiation does not compare with the heat experienced from conduction.
This can be tested in various ways, some more dramatic than others. You could for example hover your hand near a red-hot horseshoe in a smithy or you could grasp hold of the horseshoe. Is my meaning clear? Please however gentle friends, please forbear to try this experiment, since you already know the answer. It is the difference between being scorched and being branded, neither of which is advisable or desirable.
It is clear therefore that Carbon Dioxide being a tiny part of the atmosphere, however susceptible it may be to absorbing and emitting infrared radiation from the Earth, cannot in any way whatsoever warm the lower atmosphere. This leaves aside the fact that radiation is also governed by the inverse square law.
So what is the conclusion? It is this:
Conduction trumps radiation every time.
Anthropogenic Global Warming is impossibility.
Climate changes follow the dictat of Great Nature
Since I am not a scientist but merely a scribe and a kind of natural philosopher I am willing to be corrected by any who find fault with my reasoning. Secondly, if any Sceptic Professor, such as Richard Lindzen, can fault my arguments for scientific reasons, or laws of which I am ignorant, I am willing to be corrected. Thirdly, if we are all agreed as to the basic causes of warming and cooling let us be united in Slaying the Sky Dragon.