The entire basis for the concept of global warming being caused by CO2 emissions is both predicated and dependent on the answer to a simple question:
“How much of the thermal radiation energy from the Earth in the band centred on the 14.77micron wavelength that is resonant with the vibrational mode of CO2 has already been affected by the current atmospheric CO2 concentration and how much energy remains to be affected?
This question was never addressed by Svante Arrhenius in his seminal 1896 paper because that paper predates quantum physics and he was not aware that the process by which thermal energy is affected by CO2 is limited to a single vibrational mode with a resonant wavelength of 14.77microns.
In fact a close examination of that paper reveals that the measurements of energy used in this paper excluded this CO2 resonant wavelength and the paper, when scrutinized with respect to quantum physics, makes no actual measurement of the effect of CO2 but only uses an assumed ratio of the effect from CO2 compared to the effect of water vapour (which was all that was actually measured).
This same question was also never addressed by Hansen, who instead of incorporating modern physics into his climate models, used the assumed relationship of Arrhenius and developed a contrived ‘forcing parameter’ that also ignored the fact that most of the observed warming was natural warming since the Little Ice Age and not primarily from CO2 emissions.
This same question was also never addressed in any of the voluminous reports or in fact in any of the IPCC publications which are based on Hansen’s climate models which are in turn based on the Arrhenius assumption.
This same question was also never addressed in Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” which is based on the IPCC reports, which is based on Hansen’s climate models which are based on the Arrhenius assumption.
Remarkably, this question was inadvertently addressed in 1970 by the Nimbus 4 satellite (when the world was concerned about global cooling that had started around 1942).
The satellite measured the radiative spectrum from the Earth through clear skies at several locations. The radiative spectra clearly show a deep ‘notch’ at the 14.77micron wavelength band caused by the 325ppmv atmospheric CO2 concentration of the time. The depth and width of this ‘notch’ demonstrate that over 90% of the Earth’s thermal radiation from this wavelength band that could possibly be affected by CO2, had already been affected at a concentration of just 325ppmv.
To put this in context, we know that about three quarters of the Earth’s 34°C total greenhouse effect is from clouds and only 10% of the effect is from CO2. Ten percent of 34°C is 3.4°C and this is the total effect that has resulted from the observed notch in the spectrum from CO2 as measured by the Nimbus 4 satellite.
Since this 3.4°C effect results from 90% of the available energy within this wavelength band, the energy remaining in this band is only capable of adding another 10% to the 3.4°C greenhouse effect already in place. Regardless of how great the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere becomes, there is only 10% of the available energy left to capture and the possible additional effect from CO2 increases is therefore limited to something in the order of just 0.34°C which is nowhere near the 5°C to 6°C predicted by Arrhenius (because of the assumptions of the process prevalent at the time).
This is clear and absolute proof that at the current concentration, CO2 increases no longer have any possible significant effects on global temperature and one has to question the motivation of creating climate models that incorporate a contrived ‘forcing parameter’ based on the assumptions of Arrhenius instead of being based on the properties properly described by quantum physics.
Science can only advance when past theories are questioned if they are shown to be in error by observation. Rapid global warming came to an end around 1942 and the world cooled for 33 years, until 1975, as the atmospheric CO2 concentration continued to rise. This is completely contrary to the hypothesis of Arrhenius and science protocol would dictate questioning the validity of CO2 increases causing warming of the magnitude postulated by Arrhenius. As well, the rapid increase in global CO2 emissions did not begin until 1945 with post war industrialization, yet the world cooled for thirty years until 1975, so more to the point, one has to question the role of CO2 emissions and not just the concentration.
In 1988, just 13 years after this thirty year period of global cooling with rapidly increasing CO2 emissions, James Hansen created computer climate models employing a forcing parameter based on the clearly falsified assumption of Arrhenius instead of using the well established quantum physics based relationship between radiative energy from the Earth and CO2.
One has to question why instead of following science protocol and questioning the Arrhenius assumption, just 13 years after such a long period of global cooling with rapidly increasing CO2 emissions, the falsified Arrhenius assumption was used as a basis for the forcing parameter of climate models.
This is clearly the point at which honest science and the climate change issue part company. The climate models not only have their connection to global CO2 emissions based on a clearly falsified assumption, the parameter itself is knowingly six times greater than what its physical design criteria would allow. The parameter uses the assumption of Arrhenius referenced to a 100ppmv increase in CO2 concentration causing an observed 0.6°C increase in global temperature without subtracting off the 0.5°C of natural warming since the Little Ice Age.
The climate models are clearly the foundation of the dishonest science that permeates the climate change issue, but the ridiculous claims that have followed demonstrate the lengths that AGW proponents will go to force their ideology on a public that has little understanding of science.
The effect of additional CO2 in the atmosphere is to slow down the rate at which thermal energy is radiated from the Earth; essentially an insulating effect. Since the insulating effect is on energy radiated from the Earth, increasing CO2 concentration cannot send any additional energy to the Earth, which is what would be required for CO2 emissions to cause melting ice caps and sea level rise. Essentially this is the same as wrapping an ice cube in a layer of insulation and then causing it to melt by adding additional insulation.
All claims of sea level rise from increasing CO2 emissions are therefore patently false.
All claims of melting ice and drowning polar bears due to increasing CO2 emissions are patently false.
All claims relating increased CO2 emissions to increased weather events are also patently false.
Catastrophic weather events such as hurricanes require large amounts of energy and since the effect from increased CO2 emissions is merely a passive insulating effect that provides no additional energy.
In fact the saturation of the 14.77micron band and many of the laws of physics make every single claim of adverse effects from increasing CO2 emissions patently false.
Even more ridiculous are the claims about CO2 itself that have nothing to do with effects on global temperature (which is the entire basis for CO2 emissions reduction initiatives):
- Sea water is ‘basic’ (alkaline) with a pH of about 8.2 on average. Sea water is also already saturated with the carbonate ion and therefore CO2 additions from the atmosphere to the oceans (another impossibility) will not change the concentration of carbonic acid which is already at its maximum.
- We now have the term ‘pollution’ attached to CO2 emissions and just to make the point graphically clear, the cooling towers from nuclear power plants that emit zero CO2 are used as the icon for CO2 emissions pollution.
These two and dozens more like them are examples of just how far this issue has deviated from honest portrayal of fact.
The only thing true about the climate change issue is the adverse effects to humanity from all these false claims.
Rich nations power their economies with inexpensive fossil fuels, but deny poor nations similar access because of “climate change” and limit them to the inefficient and limited “Kyoto friendly” energy sources; condemning them to continued poverty.
Biofuels initiatives of the Kyoto Protocol have resulted in highly profitable government subsidized biofuel crops replacing basic food crops. This has caused such a rapid escalation of food prices that the poor can no longer afford basic food staples and hundreds of millions of the world’s poor are starving. Remarkably the UN recognizes this global food crisis; but does not realize that climate change initiatives driven by its own IPCC is the actual cause of this crisis.
After two decades of suffering the consequences of this fraudulent misrepresentation of science for what can only be seen as self serving political and ideological purposes, it is time the world put an end to this travesty and exposed the perpetrators.
All that needs to be done in the spirit of “science protocol’ is to ask this one simple question:
“How much of the thermal radiation energy from the Earth in the band centred on the 14.77micron wavelength that is resonant with the vibrational mode of CO2 has already been affected by the current atmospheric CO2 concentration, and how much energy remains to be affected?”
and have it answered by honest knowledgeable scientists.
The entire case for anthropogenic global warming and the Kyoto Protocol will completely disintegrate.
PS: In an attempt to get scientists with the proper academic accreditation to write a formal scientific challenge on the basis of the climate models I wrote a challenge. This was not taken up but the challenge was posted on http://icecap.us/images/uploads/HANSENMARSCHALLENGE.pdf
and shows the Nimbus 4 data with the notch from CO2 identified. It should be noted that because of the nature of the process the maximum reduction from CO2 is only about two thirds with the remaining third always being able to escape into space regardless of the concentration (the energy just has to travel a longer path interacting with more molecules before escaping the atmosphere).
H/T Hans Schreuder