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Salby Sees Little CO2 Driving Mechanism …Skeptical View Of CO2 Science Is In Fact ‘Textbook Science’

Written by P Gosselin & Kenneth Richard

We routinely read from fellow skeptics that they wish Dr. Murry Salby’s research could be made available in written form, or perhaps in a peer-reviewed paper.

psi 14

Indeed we do have access to his Youtube lecture research (at least a written summary of it) from an even better source than peer-reviewed paper: Dr. Murry Salby’s 2012 university-level textbook: Physics of the Atmosphere and Climate.

Here is a pdf link to the full textbook written by a world-renown expert on atmospheric physics (he’s published several dozen papers in the scientific literature on the subject). We therefore can effectively say that a skeptical view of the CO2-dominated climate paradigm is actually textbook science, not “fringe” science for the “3 percent”.

Below I’ve compiled a short list of some of the written statements from the textbook (emphasis added):

(a) temperature changes occur first and lead to CO2 emission from natural sources (e.g., more ocean outgassing upon warming, more CO2 retention as the ocean cools), indicating that warmer temperatures are driving up CO2 concentrations significantly more than human activity or fossil fuels;

(b) CO2 only accounts for a small portion of the greenhouse effect relative to water vapor/cloud; and

(c) our presumptions about paleoclimate CO2 concentrations are probably inaccurate (too low and too stable), as significant temperature fluctuations would have caused wider fluctuations in CO2 concentrations than current proxy-based reconstructions indicate.

Page 546:

“Together, emission from ocean and land sources (∼150 GtC/yr) is two orders of magnitude greater than CO2 emission from combustion of fossil fuel. These natural sources are offset by natural sinks, of comparable strength. However, because they are so much stronger, even a minor imbalance between natural sources and sinks can overshadow the anthropogenic component of CO2 emission.”

And page 249:

“The vast majority of that [greenhouse] warming is contributed by water vapor. Together with cloud, it accounts for 98% of the greenhouse effect.” 

Page 249/50:

“Surface temperature depends on the atmosphere’s optical depth. The latter, in turn, depends on atmospheric composition through radiatively active species. Water vapor is produced at ocean surfaces through evaporation. Carbon dioxide is produced by decomposition of of organic matter. These and other processes that control radiatively active species are temperature dependent.”

Page 253:

“Revealed by natural perturbations to the Earth-atmosphere system, the sensitivity accounts for much of the observed variation of CO2 emission on interannual time scales (Fig. 1.43). It establishes that GMT cannot increase without simultaneously increasing CO2 emission – from natural sources.”

Page 253:

“The results for the two periods are in broad agreement. Together with the strong dependence of CO2 emission on temperature (Fig. 1.43), they imply that a significant portion of the observed increase in r˙CO2 derives from a gradual increase in surface temperature.”

Page 546:

“Warming of SST (by any mechanism) will increase the outgassing of CO2 while reducing its absorption. Owing to the magnitude of transfers with the ocean, even a minor increase of SST can lead to increased emission of CO2 that rivals other sources.”

Page 254:

“The resemblance between observed changes of CO2 and those anticipated from increased surface temperature also points to a major inconsistency between proxy records of previous climate. Proxy CO2 from the ice core record (Fig 1.13) indicates a sharp increase after the nineteenth century. At earlier times, proxy CO2 becomes amorphous: Nearly homogeneous on time scales shorter than millennial, the ice core record implies virtually no change of atmospheric CO2. According to the above sensitivity, it therefore implies a global-mean climate that is “static,” largely devoid of changes in GMT and CO2. Proxy temperature (Fig. 1.45), on the other hand, exhibits centennial changes of GMT during the last millennium, as large as 0.5–1.0◦ K. In counterpart reconstructions, those changes are even greater (Section 1.6.2). It is noteworthy that, unlike proxy CO2 from the ice core record, proxy temperature in Fig. 1.45 rests on a variety of independent properties. In light of the observed sensitivity, those centennial changes of GMT must be attended by significant changes of CO2 during the last millennium. They reflect a global-mean climate that is “dynamic,” wherein GMT and CO2 change on a wide range of time scales. The two proxies of previous climate are incompatible. They cannot both be correct.”

These statements fully correspond with some of the main themes of his lectures.

Read more at notrickszone.com

Comments (14)

  • Avatar

    Rosco

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    John Marshall said:-

    “Downwelling radiation cannot increase the temperature of the surface unless it is at a greater temperature. (Planck’s Law) The fact that it is present and measured does not mean the GHE is working as claimed.”

    I personally believe science has only scratched the surface of electromagnetic radiation.

    Planck’s law is a probability function and should not be cited as proof of anything.

    Plots of Planck’s law curves change dramatically with change of variable affecting the value for “peak emission” dramatically.

    Compare a wavenumber plot of satellite data to a plot of satellite data.

    With a Wavenumber plot of Earth’s emissions with a 300 K Planck curve the peak emission (in W m^-2 sr^-1 cm^-1) occurs near Wavenumber 555 or ~18 micrometer. Of course this data presents a dramatic picture of how CO2 “traps” heat by taking a large “bite” out of the “peak emission” radiation..

    But a wavelength plot for Earth’s emissions with a 300 K Planck curve the peak emission (in W m^-2 sr^-1 micrometer^-1) occurs near Wavenumber 1035 or ~9.65 micrometer. This data shifts the absorption band for CO2 to the right of the plot with the peak emission relatively unaffected by any GHG other than Ozone high in the atmosphere.

    Note the same feature is shown in the wavenumber plot but the visuals are entirely different.

    Mathematically both are right and this is precisely why one should never make any absolute statements about any of the radiation “laws” other than using the simple relationships they were derived from.

    Algebraic manipulation as regularly promoted by supporters of the greenhouse effect may well be totally wrong.

    It seems incongrous that the peak emission should change simply because one chooses a different variable even if the mathematics are correct.

    I also have doubts about the way in which down welling long wave radiation is measured.

    It is not measured but inferred from what may be a spurious application of the “Net” form of the Stefan-Boltzmann equation. There is no way to verify the mathematics programmed into these devices is sound.

    I find the explanation shown at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrgeometer highly dubious and remain unconvinced of the veracity of the application.

  • Avatar

    Rosco

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    Ed – I would really like a reference link to some of these spectral measurements and explanations so I can read more.

    I always have real difficulty rationalizing the values claimed for down welling long wave IR.

    We see climate scientists such as Trenberth et al telling us that the land surfaces with density values between 1600 and 2200 kg /cubic metre or oceans with 1000 kg/cubic metre at temperatures of say 15 C radiate with only slightly more power (390 versus 324 back radiation) than the upper atmosphere where density values are a fraction of 1 kg/cubic metre and temperature at say 5000 metres are minus 17.5 C.

    They then claim that sunlight from a star with huge mass compared to Earth – 330,000 times the mass of Earth – is a mere 342 with only 168 absorbed – this despite a claimed solar constant of 1368 as used by Trenberth et al.

    The mystery is where is the mass which produces DWLR – it has to be somewhere and we know that the tiny amounts aren’t hot.

    Water vapour has a wide spectrum but CO2 is virtually transparent except at wavenumbers around 667, ~2400 and ~3600 – ~3700.

    A hypothetical predicted active band for CO2 at ~1537 does not exist according to experiment.

    Anyway, that is my difficulty with DWLR – the mass of gases is tiny yet it is claimed that they emit almost as powerfully as Earth’s surfaces and with more power than the solar insolation.

    • Avatar

      Ed Bo

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      Rosco: Science of Doom has a lot of good plots of the spectrum of downwelling long wave infrared in his “back radiation” posts. Start here:

      https://scienceofdoom.com/roadmap/back-radiation/

      The spectral plots start in Part 2. Even if you don’t agree with SoD, you can use his links to get to the sources.

      I highly recommend the purchase of Grant Petty’s text “A First Course in Atmospheric Radiation”. He has good spectral plots from the University of Wisconsin’s Space Science and Engineering Center, from their AERI sensor.

      As to the solar constant:

      The earth intercepts solar power of an amount 1368 * Pi * R^2, where R is the radius of the earth in meters. But the surface area of the earth is 4 * Pi * R^2, so the average power flux density over time and surface is 1368 / 4 = 342 W/m^2. This is high school geometry.

      Of course, the average over the daytime hemisphere is twice this, or 684 W/m2. And the tropical regions get more than the polar regions on average.

      About 30% of this radiant power is reflected, mostly by clouds and snow/ice. So the average radiative power absorbed by the earth/atmosphere system is about 240 W/m^2.

      Almost a third (~72 W/m^2) of this is absorbed in the atmosphere before it reaches the surface, leaving the 168 W/m^2 average absorbed by the surface. That’s 336 average over the daytime hemisphere (and 0 over the nighttime hemisphere).

      • Avatar

        Rosco

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        Thanks for the link – will check them out when I get a chance.

        I always find the reduction factor of 4 is misleading.

        Surely this ~240 W/m2 flux is the geometrically calculated emission flux on average due to much higher levels of solar radiation exclusively on the day side.

        They show S(1-a) (heating power) .pi.r^2 = 4.pi.r^2 sigma T^4

        T^4 is not the temperature S(1-a) can induce on the day side exclusively.

        1368(1 – 0.3) W/m2 can induce temperatures of ~360 K.

        When people claim the sun can only induce surface heating equivalent to 1/4 of the incident power they are wrong.

        Solar panels are rated compared to 1000 W insolation with a stated effieiency.

        The 200 W panels I have have efficiency of 15.6 % and a surface area of ~1.2 m2.

        If insolation was truly as low as is stated then these panels could never produce more than 31.5 W – to call them 200 W panels would be fraud.

        Besides I know clear day summer values reach >850 W/m2 from the output figures from my solar array. I live at 27 south which in summer approximates ~ 4 degrees south.

        Averaging the power over 24 hours is an incorrect way to calculate maximum temperatures.

        What happens is the Sun heats the surface to far hotter temperatures than 168 W/m2, 240 W/m2 or 342 W/m2 can ever induce. The surface loses that heat to the atmosphere through various processes in the period when the normal incident solar radiation drops reduces.

        If this were not true then surface temperatures recorded by Landsat of 70.7 degrees C would not be possible.

        • Avatar

          Ed Bo

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          Rosco:

          You need to distinguish between the average temperatures some people talk about and the extreme high and low temperatures other people are talking about.

          You also need to distinguish between bodies with large thermal capacitances reacting to the day/night cycle and those with small thermal capacitances in play.

          The moon, with its very long day/night cycle and very small thermal capacitance reacting to this cycle, provides great extremes. The equator at the lunar noon reaches over 360K (~90C) and at dawn goes down to about 80K (-190C). These extremes are close to (but do not quite reach) what the steady-state values would be for a given solar inclination angle without rotation.

          The earth, with its much faster day/night cycle, much larger thermal capacitance reacting to the cycle (especially the oceans) and methods of distributing thermal energy (winds and currents), has much more moderated extremes. It is somewhat close to the idealized model of the body that has essentially uniform temperatures across the surface (the one that climate scientists like to use for conceptual explanations).

          Of course, if you have an object with a very small thermal capacitance somewhat thermally isolated from its surroundings (like your solar panels), it can have much more extreme temperature swings than its surroundings.

  • Avatar

    John Marshall

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    Salby still believes in the GHE which has yet to be observed or measured. Also violates the laws of thermodynamics.

    • Avatar

      Rosco

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      It depends on what one calls the “greenhouse effect”.

      The back radiative “greenhouse effect” is totally implausible.

      But there is absolutely no doubt that there is an atmospheric effect simply because the atmosphere has mass and well described thermal properties.

      My take on it is the atmosphere and oceans reduce the potential heating of the solar radiation and the atmosphere simply does not have the physical properties to cause the effects claimed. Filtering UV, clouds reflection, evaporation and convection all reduce the potential solar heating of the surface.

      The real question is whether ridiculous claims as taught in University courses such as the atmospheric radiation has equal heating power as sunshine – or even higher power if one accepts Trenberth’s energy budget as apparently the IPCC does – is whether the people promoting this are genuinely too stupid to see their “consensus” hypothesis is absurd or are they simply dishonest ?

      • Avatar

        John Marshall

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        Rosco,
        You are talking about the adiabatic heating of the atmosphere that leads to the lapse rate. This is not the GHE. Atmospheric heating due to back radiation is impossible.

        • Avatar

          Rosco

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          John – I did say – “The back radiative “greenhouse effect” is totally implausible.”

          I was simply saying lots of people say lots of things about what the “greenhouse effect” is – it is so ill defined that believers say it can be virtually anything !

          http://lasp.colorado.edu/~bagenal/3720/CLASS14/14EVM-5.html – this is one University site which equates the lapse rate to the “greenhouse effect” explicitly.

          After deriving a theoretical gravitational lapse rate for Earth Venus and Mars they then call it the “greenhouse effect” ?

          I thought Salby simply used the words “greenhouse effect” to refer to the fact that the atmosphere has mass and hence thermal properties because if a book author doesn’t use the words “greenhouse effect” their books are simply ignored.

          • Avatar

            John Marshall

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            Then it is about time that this term Greenhouse Effect was either removed from the scientific dictionary or explained as a removal of the ability to convect which is how a greenhouse actually works.

    • Avatar

      Ed Bo

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      John,

      Is it your claim that the countless detailed spectral measurements of downwelling longwave infrared radiation from surface sensors looking up, with most of the power in the emission bands of H2O and CO2, are all fiction?

      • Avatar

        Rosco

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        Do you have a reference link ?

      • Avatar

        Jef Reynen

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        The answer is indeed downwelling radiation of heat is nonsense, heat does not go from cold to warm.
        The discussion goes back tp Prevost who claimed that between two plates, at equal temperature, heat was radiating from plate 1 to plate 2, and the same amount of heat was radiating from plate 2 to plate 1. Fourier did not agree.
        Between plate 1 and plate 2 electromagnetic information is exchanged and as a result a heat flow is radiated from the warmer plate, say plate 1 at T1, to the colder plate, say plate 2 at T2 with T1>T2 :
        q(1 to 2) = sigma(T1^4-T2^4). And q(2 to 1) = 0.
        \ For equal temperatures only the information is exchanged, but no heat is exchanged from 1 to 2 nor the same amount from 2 to 1.
        Practical hint to teachers at engineering schools : write Stefan Boltzmann always for a pair of surfaces. Do not use the two-stream formulation. It gives spurious absorption if not interpreted correctly.
        The one-stream formulation becomes necessary if for example the surface conditions of plate 1 and plate 2 are not the same, but plate1 has an emission coefficient eps1 and plate 2 has an emission coefficient eps2.
        In that case the two plates exchange electromagnetic information on both temperatures and surface conditions and the heat exchange by radiation becomes :
        q(1 to 2)=eps12*sigma(T1^4-T2^4) with 1/eps12 = 1/eps1 + 1/eps2 -1.
        q(2 to1)=0 for T1>T2.
        In the following link these ideas, from Christiansen of 1883, are explained in detail, where the two-stream formulation is used to derive the Christiansen relation !

        http://www.tech-know-group.com/papers/Prevost_no_back-radiation-v2.pdf

        The one-stream formulationto analysis of the atmospheree with no back-radiation and thereby huge absorption is given in the following links :
        in an overview paper  without mathematics :
        http://www.tech-know-group.com/papers/Sensitivity_overview.pdf

        And with more mathematics :

        http://www.tech-know-group.com/papers/sensitivity.pdf

        • Avatar

          John Marshall

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          Downwelling radiation cannot increase the temperature of the surface unless it is at a greater temperature. (Planck’s Law) The fact that it is present and measured does not mean the GHE is working as claimed.

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