Study: Earth more sensitive to carbon dioxide than previously thought

Dec 06, 2009
The temperature response of the Earth (in degrees C) to an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide from pre-industrial levels (280 parts per million by volume) to higher levels (400 parts per million by volume). (a) shows predicted global temperatures when processes that adjust on relatively short-term timescales (for example sea-ice, clouds, and water vapour) are included in the model, (b) includes additional long-tem processes that adjust on relatively long timescales (vegetation and land-ice).

In the long term, the Earth's temperature may be 30-50% more sensitive to atmospheric carbon dioxide than has previously been estimated, reports a new study published in Nature Geoscience this week.

The results show that components of the Earth's climate system that vary over long timescales - such as land-ice and vegetation - have an important effect on this temperature sensitivity, but these factors are often neglected in current .

Dan Lunt, from the University of Bristol, and colleagues compared results from a global climate model to temperature reconstructions of the Earth's environment three million years ago when global temperatures and carbon dioxide concentrations were relatively high. The temperature reconstructions were derived using data from three million-year-old sediments on the .

Lunt said, "We found that, given the concentrations of carbon dioxide prevailing three million years ago, the model originally predicted a significantly smaller temperature increase than that indicated by the reconstructions. This led us to review what was missing from the model."

The authors demonstrate that the increased temperatures indicated by the reconstructions can be explained if factors that vary over long timescales, such as land-ice and vegetation, are included in the model. This is primarily because changes in vegetation and ice lead to more sunlight being absorbed, which in turn increases warming.

Including these long-term processes in the model resulted in an increased temperature response of the Earth to carbon dioxide, indicating that the Earth's temperature is more sensitive to carbon dioxide than previously recognised. Climate models used by bodies such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change often do not fully include these long-term processes, thus these models do not entirely represent the sensitivity of the Earth's to carbon dioxide.

Alan Haywood, a co-author on the study from the University of Leeds, said "If we want to avoid dangerous change, this high sensitivity of the Earth to should be taken into account when defining targets for the long-term stabilisation of atmospheric greenhouse-gas concentrations".

Lunt added: "This study has shown that studying past climates can provide important insights into how the Earth might change in the future."

More information: system sensitivity inferred from Pliocene modelling and data by Daniel J. Lunt, Alan M. Haywood, Gavin A. Schmidt, Ulrich Salzmann, Paul J. Valdes and Harry J. Dowsett. Published online in Nature Geoscience on 6 December 2009.

Source: University of Bristol (news : web)

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deatopmg
3.6 / 5 (25) Dec 06, 2009
"Lunt said, "We found that, given the concentrations of carbon dioxide prevailing three million years ago, the model originally predicted a significantly smaller temperature increase than that indicated by the reconstructions. This led us to review what was missing from the model.""

WHat is missing here is that the original data showed that CO2 increase FOLLOWED the rise in temperature, as in every other past temperature/CO2 relationship. Therefore, whether the model fits what happened 3M years ago, or not, is meaningless, as is it's prediction of some future CO2 warming catastrophe.
Shootist
3.3 / 5 (30) Dec 06, 2009
CO2 has been 1000% (that's 10X for you AGW supporters) higher than today.

Temperatures have been both warmer (MWP) and colder (maunder minimum) than today. And THAT in historical times.

When there are again dairy farms in Greenland and commercial grape Vineyards in Scotland and Northumberland, and it is still getting warmer? Then come talk to me about Climate Change. Not a minute before.

"Warmer is better" - Freeman Dyson (could be the smartest man on the planet).
NameIsNotNick
2.7 / 5 (33) Dec 06, 2009
Shootist... there is no such thing as an "AGW supporter". It's NOT an opinion or and act of faith... it's a scientific fact. It doesn't need "supporters" to establish its validity. OTOH, "AGW deniers" usually have an agenda other than seeking the truth. BTW, the Maunder Minimum has nothing to do with the Carbon Cycle the carbon cycle so irrelevant in this context
Birger
3.9 / 5 (22) Dec 06, 2009
The warm north atlantic period in medieval times happened during low-CO2 conditions, when slightly altered ocean currents and wind conditions favoured a warmer *REGIONAL* climate in the North Atlantic zone. Higher CO2 rates in the atmosphere will have *GLOBAL* effects (but first visible in the Arctic). These differences between then and now are important.

Other differences include the ability of the ocean to absorb new CO2, and the feedback effects of aerosols (clouds) on warming/cooling, a computationally very difficult system to simulate.
vanderMerwe
2.8 / 5 (28) Dec 06, 2009
Game over. AGW was a fraud. Not that that would have been the first fraud tied to science. Remember when they were selling gas masks after astronomers detected minute amount of cyanide gas in the tail of Halley's Comet visit before last? :-/
deatopmg
2.8 / 5 (26) Dec 06, 2009
@NameIsNotNick
You are correct; there aren't AGW supporters. However, there are AGW believers and AGW profiteers (Gore is a prime example of that w/ his refusal to even discuss his "facts").
The release of British FOIA data and correspondence by UEA (or at least placing those requested files on a public server so they could be found) is what we deniers have suspected all along, diddling of the facts, because the results just didn't mesh with most others past climate reconstructions. We are now waiting for NASA to release their requested files through the US FOIA, though NASA people continue to stonewall the requests. Why? Based on the UEA correspondence, I now think that is intuitively obvious to even the most casual observer.

Remember; "castles made of sand wash into the sea, eventually" -Mr. Jimmie
Sean_W
3.3 / 5 (23) Dec 06, 2009
Increases in vegitation increase the sunlight absorbed but it also increases the water released in transpiration and less ice cover means more evaporation - more cloud cover more carbon dioxide uptake and so forth. It is fun to only include the factors that move the predictions of the model in the direction you want them to go but eventually the fact that your models don't give accurate predictions (even about the past) becomes "a travesty".

Everything in this article is an unfounded assertion and wild speculation - which is all climatology is at this point in time unless you count the fraud and corruption. It is time to give this crap a rest.
NameIsNotNick
2.8 / 5 (31) Dec 06, 2009
The anti-Gore sentiment is a prime example of the ridiculous politicizing of the AGW issue by right-wing zealots (most of whom think evolution is a theory and the world is 6000 years old). Gore is essentially right regardless of whether you like his politics or not. AGW does require extrapolation from imperfect data by imperfect models but we ignore its predictions, literally, at our peril.
ArtflDgr
Dec 06, 2009
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
po6ert
3.4 / 5 (20) Dec 06, 2009
water vapor was and is the principle green house gas just a scientific fact
sams
2.5 / 5 (26) Dec 06, 2009
I see the deniers are out in force today. Painted yourselves into a corner now, haven't you? Just point out the articles you have published in peer-reviewed top-tier climate science journals, and maybe you might get some credence.
Caliban
2.6 / 5 (22) Dec 06, 2009
@sams-
apparently, those guys are too busy trading in oil futures while driving their Hummers to be able to dig up any credible studies that can refute Global Warming.
marjon
3.3 / 5 (12) Dec 06, 2009
Who did the peer review?
PMende
2.6 / 5 (20) Dec 06, 2009
The issue of rising global temperature is this: the possibility for massive human suffering in the tropics and other low lying regions is real. If the recent trends of abnormal increase in global surface temperatures ARE due (at least partly) to human action, then there is the opportunity for action to avert suffering. If it is not, we will still have turned a corner in being better caretakers of the environment.

I don't know whether or not humans are responsible for the (REAL) recent climate change - no one does. What I do know is that we haven't taken care of the planet as much as it has taken care of us, and that human energy production and consumption must become sustainable. So why not start now?
Parsec
3.5 / 5 (19) Dec 07, 2009
The biggest problem in most of the models used for predicting warming today is that they do not show as much warming as we are actually measuring. This was the problem described in the article. Adding in more details caused the models became closer in describing what really happened.

I have yet to see a report that describes CO2 levels changing after the temperature changed. However, I would agree that since CO2 levels and temperatures change in lockstep with each other, it is difficult to determine which caused which.

It's a lot easier to blame the temperature changes on CO2 levels because we have a very convenient mechanism (greenhouse forcing) to explain it. This is a case of Occam's Razor.

I have yet to see an AGW denier actually quote a peer reviewed scientific article describing any of the effects they claim are real. Meanwhile the glaciers keep melting and animal ranges keep moving. We have effects being reported by 10's of thousands, scientist's and laypeople alike.
wiserd
3.1 / 5 (19) Dec 07, 2009
sams - Did you read the leaked statements from the CRU where they admit they were pressuring journals not to publish articles critical to their theories? It's one thing for a journal to refuse an article based on poor methodology. To refuse to publish based on differing conclusions invalidates the 'peer review' process. In any case, Mann et al has LOST their raw data. Meaning that their results are NOT REPRODUCABLE and therefore NOT SCIENTIFIC.

Take the time to look at their actual models. They are garbage. Even Mann has given up on his "the MWP was local" and admits now that the MWP was a global phenomenon.

I can understand why non-experts might say "We should trust the experts!!" But to bring that up as a counter argument to valid criticisms of AGW theories is to contribute nothing to the conversation.

wiserd
3.2 / 5 (18) Dec 07, 2009
NameIsNotNick - Noone I've talked to arguing against catastrophic AGW disbelieves evolution. Al Gore, on the other hand, thinks the center of the earth is a million degrees. He either doesn't understand the difference between CO2 as a lagging indicator (which it is) and presents it as a leading indicator or else he is deliberately misleading people. Which one do you think it is? Or do you not understand the difference either?

For anyone interested in an intelligent discussion on the topic, check out the comments section of Megan Mcardle's blog post. http://meganmcard...y_of.php

The inability of catostrophic AGW supporters to produce their raw data (and their reliance on disproven methods like tree ring data as measures of temperature) invalidate their arguments. No tropospheric warming = no greenhouse warming. Every data set that supports CAGW has been 'adjusted' in some way, with adjustments constituting ~80% of the warming
bhiestand
2.7 / 5 (14) Dec 07, 2009
NameIsNotNick - Noone I've talked to arguing against catastrophic AGW disbelieves evolution.

Go check some of the other threads I've posted in. They're actually on PhysOrg, believe it or not.

Among others, people on this site have claimed that Al Gore is part of a socialist cabal of anti-capitalists AND that Al Gore is manufacturing this "hoax" in order to personally profit his corporation.

People who disbelieve evolution are almost 100% likely to disbelieve any science that threatens their world views, and that most certainly includes AGW. They're on your side, along with big energy, and you can't deny that :)

Then again, our side (I'll just call that people who believe the evidence is sufficient to warrant human preventive actions) has the Earth Firsters in our camp. We're all guilty by association. You bring up Al Gore, I'll bring up Dick Cheney, but that's all smoke and mirrors. Let's just stick to the science instead.
bhiestand
3.1 / 5 (15) Dec 07, 2009
And on a side note, I'm getting real sick of all the AGW Denier crowd rating all climate-related articles 1 star... makes me feel like I'm back in primary school.
MikeyK
3.1 / 5 (18) Dec 07, 2009
It seems that facts are in short supply with the deniers spouting the same language they apparently learned at primary blogschool.
Fact: sea levels are continuing to rise rapidly and are at the highest recorded: http://sealevel.c...obal.jpg
Lower atmospheric temperatures are (exactly as the climate models have predicted)regularly at all time highs throughout the last year. http://discover.i...sutemps.
Compared to the last 30 years+ November was globally the warmest recorded http://vortex.nss...hmam_5.2
Note that none of the above was affected by UHI etc!
A simple request to deniers (especially the new converts to this apparently newly fashionable cult), read some REAL science, not the blogosphere soundbites and get some learning!
You will soon find that the AGW deniersphere fall into the same category as Roswell, Grassy Knolls, intelligent design etc.

Parsec
3.8 / 5 (13) Dec 07, 2009
I am in absolute agreement that any scientist that cannot produce their raw data, or cannot show the data and demonstrate that the conclusions they draw are valid from it, should be discarded.

However, simply pointing to invalid studies and ignoring the overwhelming number of very good ones to try and disprove a point is silly.

Deniers who claim that climate change isn't real or that sea levels aren't rising, or that the science doesn't firmly support what computer models are telling us fall into that category. One must discard the bad studies, as defined above, and then look at the aggregate of the information to make any kind of reasonable determination.

This claim of climate-gate and fraud from those famous hacked emails are mostly based on the reasonable exclusion of bad science.
MikeyK
3.3 / 5 (7) Dec 07, 2009
sams - Even Mann has given up on his "the MWP was local" and admits now that the MWP was a global phenomenon.

Has he? Perhaps you would be so kind as to provide a reference for this claim.
Parsec
4 / 5 (14) Dec 07, 2009
Bad science is not defined as science that disagrees with you. I have seen very valid reports that glaciers near the tip of South America are growing, and of temperature anomalies in Antarctica. For years, scientists were puzzled by the fact that Antarctica didn't seem to be warming. The only reason they knew this was because of studies published in peer reviewed publications. These seemed to indicate there were big flaws in the theory of AGW. The point is that they were not excluded because they disagreed with the prevailing wisdom.

It has only been recently that scientists have come to understand that the ozone hole was preventing the warming.

I would also like to know where people got the idea that CO2 was a lagging indicator. Show me the data please.
marjon
2 / 5 (8) Dec 07, 2009
So why not start now?


Start what now? Raising taxes to kill off technology that will increase energy efficiency?
ArtflDgr
1.8 / 5 (5) Dec 07, 2009
they are certain that given enough time they will force a cow over the moon.
nada
3.6 / 5 (14) Dec 07, 2009
Science haters are science haters. These are the same people who think adam and eve rode dinosaurs to church on sunday.

Don't elect stupid politicians - that's all that matters.
nada
Dec 07, 2009
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
DGBEACH
2.4 / 5 (12) Dec 07, 2009
Only time will tell, gentlemen, who had it right. What I can't stand though are those who think they know all the answers, when we can't even predict the weather more than 3 or 4 days away... even when there is a major effector approaching (hurricane or typhoon). Show us a provable understanding of THAT then maybe less people will be skeptics.
Obviously if you are living somewhere where you can consistently document rising ocean levels, then it is time to adapt to them...that capability to adapt is why we humans survived the last ice age.
Personally, I think that if we DID start a warming process on this planet, we are not advanced enough as a species to fully understand what it would take to reverse it!
MikeyK
2.8 / 5 (13) Dec 07, 2009
....that capability to adapt is why we humans survived the last ice age.
Personally, I think that if we DID start a warming process on this planet, we are not advanced enough as a species to fully understand what it would take to reverse it!

To put the current crisis into context the global temperature difference between the Ice Age and now is only 2 degrees C.
We are (hopefully) intelligent enough to realise that we must cut CO2 NOW before we reach the 2 degrees of warming threshold. Beyond that you may be right.
marjon
2 / 5 (8) Dec 07, 2009
And on a side note, I'm getting real sick of all the AGW Denier crowd rating all climate-related articles 1 star... makes me feel like I'm back in primary school.


Why do you really care?
marjon
2.8 / 5 (10) Dec 07, 2009
Science haters are science haters. These are the same people who think adam and eve rode dinosaurs to church on sunday.

Don't elect stupid politicians - that's all that matters.


I find those accusing others of hate do so because they are quite familiar with the emotion.
Jo01
2.9 / 5 (8) Dec 07, 2009

"It's a lot easier to blame the temperature changes on CO2 levels because we have a very convenient mechanism (greenhouse forcing) to explain it. This is a case of Occam's Razor."

Parsec, it's not so much a question whether CO2 is a greenhouse gas but how much it contributes to global warming. With all kinds of feedback loops like rapid plant growth (some forrest grow twice as fast, and thats very recent information), change in cloud formation and altered weather and water steam patterns, its very hard to tell what change elevated CO2 levels will give.

Another point is that the absorption spectrum of water almost completely overlaps that of CO2 and that a linear rise in parts per million doesn't result in a linear rise energy absorption (in fact it levels of). So even a 10x increase of CO2 could add one a few percent absorption to the total. And its effect could be eliminated by for example a more dense cloud pattern.

...
defunctdiety
2.6 / 5 (17) Dec 07, 2009
it's a scientific fact.

Wrong, it is nowhere close to proven man is the cause of any climate change. And this is THE MOST IMPORTANT POINT. Doesn't matter that the globe is warming, if MAN ISN'T THE CAUSE, logic follows WE CAN'T DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT.
So why not start now?

Do you realize that there is absolutely NO AGW LEGISLATION that PROMOTES RENEWABLES DIRECTLY? All AGW cares about is making you pay for CO2. This IS NOT a PROGRESSIVE policy. This, by definition, IS REGRESSIVE. It HURTS ECONOMY and therefore progress.
Those of you who think pollution is "good"

AGW legislation has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with CONTROLLING ACTUAL POLLUTION. They want you to believe green-house gases are bad for your health, this is a flat-out lie!

YOU ARE ALL FORGETTING THE END RESULT! BACK REAL CHANGE, DO SOME RESEARCH, AGW LEGISLATION IS NOT PROGRESSIVE CHANGE, IT IS REGRESSION.

You all ask for citations, prove to me that CO2 legislation does anything progressive!!
3432682
2.4 / 5 (17) Dec 07, 2009
Temperatures have warmed only 1 degree in 150 years. They are now falling, including ocean temp. The 60 year solar cycle is in a cooling phase for 20 more years. Oceans are stable, after rising 400 feet in 10,000 years. Relax, and enjoy the zealots trying to sell gloom and doom, and a socialist world government.
Jo01
3.7 / 5 (13) Dec 07, 2009
...

Yet another point is that the earth isn't a closed system. Energy from the sun fluctuates. And thats periodic. A valid climate model has to include these variations as well, as it must account for (rapid) climate variations in earth pre human period (4+ billion years or so).

And thats exactly the point, lots of very important facts are found out just now.
And this new information could be very relevant to the climate predictions.

It is for example just silly that a few years ago climate gurus stated that the full CO2 balance was known. Every molecule accounted for. But in fact the last few years added a lot of new information and only now new satellites begin to measure the real CO2 data from space. This is also the case with very precise global temperature measurements.

It's a fact that climate science is a new discipline and its knowledge is vastly in flux. And history shows its unwise to expect much of a new discipline. Look at geology for example.

...
marjon
1.8 / 5 (5) Dec 07, 2009
This is also the case with very precise global temperature measurements.

Calibrated temperatures from space still have much uncertainty as noted by NASA's push for CLARREO.
Jo01
3.1 / 5 (9) Dec 07, 2009
...

Another fundamental problem is that recently several scientific studies indicate that for example the El Nino effect could account for most, if not all, of the rise in temperature in large parts of the world. Also radiation captured because of urbanization could account for 50% of the temperature rise in the US. If true (and this climate research is as valid as any) this will significantly reduce the effect of CO2 on the earth temperature.
It could of course be otherwise but the reasons for that have yet to be understood, and a final conclusion on the effect of CO2 on the earth temperature has to be delayed.

J.

brianweymes
3.4 / 5 (10) Dec 07, 2009
deatopmg, I'm puzzled why it would matter historically whether C02 lagged or led, since in the present it definitely is leading temperature. If you're implying that this means the relationship between C02 and temperature is purely correlational, this is incorrect. In the past, C02 had sometimes lagged warming, but that's because the warming was initially caused by something else. After that, the released C02 then amplified temperatures, which drove up C02 even higher, and so forth. Nothing new or problematic there.

The Medieval Warm Period is adequately explained by New Scientist: http://www.newsci...ed.html. Many temperature reconstructions (see graph) other than Mann have been done on this, and they all indicate that the present time is still much warmer than the MWP. Even so, it was still only a regional effect.
defunctdiety
2.2 / 5 (13) Dec 07, 2009
Do you intellectual cowards have any valid response to my points, or are you going to hide behind your 1 as per usual?
bhiestand
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 07, 2009
Calibrated temperatures from space still have much uncertainty as noted by NASA's push for CLARREO.

I wouldn't call it "much uncertainty" so much as "less accuracy than we'd like". There's more to the push for CLARREO, like the fact that it can be used to absolutely calibrate pretty much everything in our arsenal across the full spectrum.

But of course no single line of evidence should ever be enough... we also have decent coverage with buoys which have very high accuracy and precision. I'd say the buoy data alone gives us very precise global temperature measurements, wouldn't you?
bhiestand
3.3 / 5 (7) Dec 07, 2009
A 1 for defunctdiety for the cowards remark...
if MAN ISN'T THE CAUSE, logic follows WE CAN'T DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT.

You forgot to capitalize your "if" in that statement, but your argument is still logically invalid. Even ignoring your weak premise, you would have to prove that we couldn't do anything to affect it. See: global dimming

All AGW cares about is making you pay for CO2.

AGW doesn't care about anything, and I know you're smarter than to think it does. AGW is about whether or not man is exacerbating warming. If it's not, we're wrong, if it is, we're ALL wrong (as a society).

You're mixing the politics with the science. I dislike cap and trade myself (but better than nothing), and I'd like to see a very serious push towards renewables in the US. I have no idea what you're talking about when you say "AGW LEGISLATION", though. There has been legislation in the US that provided incentives and development money for renewables.
defunctdiety
2.8 / 5 (11) Dec 07, 2009
global dimming

So you're saying we're cooling the earth. Please bear in mind that more CO2 means more particulate and aerosols (is this incorporated into prediction models? no). Which has the greater effect on irradiance? You have to prove we CAN do anything to affect it, which there is no significant data to support. And no, "the earth is warming and we are emitting CO2" is not significant data when lack of understanding of the system and historic variability are taken into account.
You're mixing the politics with the science.

No, I'm not. I'm saying the science is insufficient and the politics are 100% flawed.

You are trying to say an unknown end justifies a known costly means.

Do you personally believe we can control the climate? Do you believe we can make the climate do whatever we want forever? If so, sorry but you're an idiot. If not, then why do you back the political AGW movement?

The science is irrelevant, it's what we DO with what we KNOW that matters.
MikeyK
2.9 / 5 (10) Dec 07, 2009
Temperatures have warmed only 1 degree in 150 years. They are now falling, including ocean temp. The 60 year solar cycle is in a cooling phase for 20 more years. Oceans are stable, after rising 400 feet in 10,000 years. Relax, and enjoy the zealots trying to sell gloom and doom, and a socialist world government.

You obviously only see what you want to see, I refer you to my links above which show sea levels and temperatures rising (all from satellites, no UHI there!). As regards the now totally discredited theory of low solar output (as measured by sunspot numbers) causing resulting in lower temperatures perhaps you can explain why, despite an exceptionally extended period of low sunspot numbers temperatures are still increasing?
defunctdiety
2.7 / 5 (12) Dec 07, 2009
AGW is about whether or not man is exacerbating warming.

I appreciate the backpedaling, but AGW has never been about anything other than man being 100% the cause of any change in the climate.

That is until recently of course when AGW has been failing week after week and the proponents realize they must give some ground to retain any appearance of credibility.
I have no idea what you're talking about when you say "AGW LEGISLATION", though. There has been legislation in the US that provided incentives and development money for renewables.

AGW legislation: current policy proposals based on AGW theory that have climate control (limiting earth to 2 degree C rise) as their goal, carbon legislation. It's pure absurdity.

We can provide incentives and funding for renewables directly, without AGW theory, for 100 other reasons. Do you agree with subsidies? i.e. gov't creating a market? If so, thanks for the socialism you bring.

AGW is an extraneous part of the entire equation.
marjon
2 / 5 (9) Dec 07, 2009
Calibrated temperatures from space still have much uncertainty as noted by NASA's push for CLARREO.

I wouldn't call it "much uncertainty" so much as "less accuracy than we'd like". There's more to the push for CLARREO, like the fact that it can be used to absolutely calibrate pretty much everything in our arsenal across the full spectrum.

But of course no single line of evidence should ever be enough... we also have decent coverage with buoys which have very high accuracy and precision. I'd say the buoy data alone gives us very precise global temperature measurements, wouldn't you?


Where is the sensor? It may provide a very good temperature reading at its specific location, 10 feet above the water, for example. How about 20 or 30 or....
I went diving off LaJolla Beach, CA in AUG. Surface water temp was ~65F. 10 feet down was 50F. Thermoclines are everywhere.
marjon
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2009
Temperature bouys:

Sensor Depth 330 mm (13 inches)

http://www.soundo...y001.htm

Such a bouy would miss any thermoclines and air temperatures.
stealthc
2.3 / 5 (7) Dec 07, 2009
There are a few flaws with this article. Firstly:
you point out pre-industrial levels at 280 ppm. I'm fine with that figure.
Then you point out 400 ppm. I am not ok with that figure because wikipedia reports 387 ppmv (0.0387%), here http://en.wikiped...of_Earth

400 seems like it's rounded up, which seems to make things appear worse than they actually are.

SECONDLY:
You mention elevated co2 levels 3 million years ago, however no information is given as to what those levels actually were.

THIRDLY:
Based on today's volcanic evidence, this atmosphere would have contained 80% water vapor, 10% carbon dioxide, 5 to 7% hydrogen sulfide, and smaller amounts of nitrogen, carbon monoxide, hydrogen, methane and inert gases.
This was taken from the same wikipedia article. Did we have a runaway warming with 100000 ppm co2, or did the rain not wash it from the sky and eventually co2 converted into o2 by algae and eventually plant-life?
frajo
2 / 5 (8) Dec 07, 2009
Do you intellectual cowards have any valid response to my points, or are you going to hide behind your 1 as per usual?
1 star because your sound pressure was too high.
nada
2.6 / 5 (5) Dec 07, 2009


I find those accusing others of hate do so because they are quite familiar with the emotion.

I find those who take this condescending tone are of too few thoughts to hold a debate and too arrogant to know the difference.
MikeyK
3.5 / 5 (8) Dec 07, 2009
Temperature bouys:

Sensor Depth 330 mm (13 inches)

http://www.soundo...y001.htm

Such a bouy would miss any thermoclines and air temperatures.


The buoys are not there to measure air temperature but sea surface temperatures. They are not the only buoys measuring sea temperature, Argo measures sea temperature down to 2km (of course that still leaves much of the ocean depths unmeasured. http://sos.noaa.g...all.html
kasen
2.3 / 5 (9) Dec 07, 2009
We know the weather's changing, people...How many times must it be repeated that no one is denying that? 90% of all AGW comments are based on that assumption and on religious slurs. Oh, and the old "1000 scientists can't be wrong" BS. Yeah, a physicist, a chemist, a biologist, a geologist and a climatologist can't all be wrong at the same time. But 1000 climatologists can, as well as 1000 physicists etc. Most sceptics come from other scientific fields for a good reason.

Since you're so eager to point out the obvious, how about you take a close look at the techniques used to make these doomsday predictions? Less than a lung-full of trapped air is used to infer the atmospheric concentration of various gases some million years ago. And thousands of climate scientists use that data, along with other such exact sources(like tree rings), in their models. How accurate do you think those models will be?
marjon
1 / 5 (3) Dec 07, 2009


I find those accusing others of hate do so because they are quite familiar with the emotion.

I find those who take this condescending tone are of too few thoughts to hold a debate and too arrogant to know the difference.


In my experience on these boards, those who start accusing others of 'hate' are those you describe: too few thoughts and too much emotion.
marjon
1 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2009
Temperature bouys:

Sensor Depth 330 mm (13 inches)

http://www.soundo...y001.htm


Hydrothermal vents have water temperatures up to 400C. How many vents? How much heat?
wiserd
3.1 / 5 (10) Dec 07, 2009
bhiestand -

To be clear, I'd very much like to 'stick to the science.'

My problem is not that Al Gore (for instance) claims to believe in eminent catastrophic, solely greenhouse gas mediated anthropogenic global warming, but that he's presented himself as an
expert on climatology while making some very stupid mistakes. I'd like, at least, to invalidate him as a reputable source of information, not because he stands to profit from his beliefs or because his actions seem to contradict his beliefs (effective opposition to nuclear power and nuclear reprocessing relative even to those who don't believe that CO2 is a big deal, for instance) but because he's said things that were either horribly stupid or else deliberately misleading as mentioned earlier.

My problem is that SO MUCH of the raw data has been cooked, with the processes for adjustment not publicly available, so many methodological flaws in data collection and the peer review process not screening these problems out...
wiserd
3 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2009
...I've lost a lot of blind trust that I once had in the field.

Parsec - Noone sane is saying climate isn't changing. The debate is the causes, the extent and the effect.

MikeyK -
Mann wrote:
The Medieval period is found to display warmth that matches or exceeds that of the past decade in some regions, but which falls well below recent levels
globally...The reconstructed MCA pattern is characterized
by warmth over a large part of the North
Atlantic, Southern Greenland, the Eurasian Arctic,
and parts of North America, which appears to substantially exceed that of the modern late–
20th century (1961–1990) baseline and is comparable
to or exceeds that of the past one-to-two
decades in some regions.
http://www.meteo....ce09.pdf


Mann is still qualifying his statements and still talks about significant cold areas, but he's no longer asserting that the MWP was limited to Europe.
bhiestand
3.2 / 5 (9) Dec 07, 2009
I appreciate the backpedaling, but AGW has never been about anything other than man being 100% the cause of any change in the climate.

It's not backpedaling, and that's not what AGW has ever been about. I have never heard a serious climatologist claim that the climate is stagnant. It's always been more along the lines of "man's greenhouse gas emissions raise the warming rate from 0.1˚/century to 2˚/century" (pulling those numbers out of my bum for the purposes of the example).

AGW legislation: current policy proposals based on AGW theory that have climate control (limiting earth to 2 degree C rise) as their goal, carbon legislation. It's pure absurdity.

Frankly, I don't accept that definition as valid. Can you direct me to any currently enacted legislation in the US that fits this criteria? I assume you're only talking about the US here.

If so, thanks for the socialism you bring.

Oh, right, socialism again. The truth comes out.
bhiestand
3.7 / 5 (9) Dec 07, 2009
So you're saying we're cooling the earth. Please bear in mind that more CO2 means more particulate and aerosols (is this incorporated into prediction models? no). Which has the greater effect on irradiance? You have to prove we CAN do anything to affect it, which there is no significant data to support.

I highly suggest you at least google "global dimming" before mocking people for saying it. It's one of the few climate theories that has had the opportunity for direct national experimentation (aftermath of 9/11 when air traffic was halted for several days).

Do you personally believe we can control the climate? Do you believe we can make the climate do whatever we want forever?

Of course not, you know that's a straw man. I believe we can affect the climate. There is a big difference.
bhiestand
3.3 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2009
wiserd,
My problem is . . . that he's presented himself as an expert on climatology while making some very stupid mistakes

I saw his movie and disliked his appeals to emotion and oversimplifying, but I understand it's nearly impossible to communicate with the masses without both of those. I don't remember him saying or implying that he was an expert, simply citing experts.

Since he's a politician I'm inclined to believe you. I'd never recommend getting science from politicians, but I wouldn't recommend getting science from many journalists, either.

My problem is that SO MUCH of the raw data has been cooked

I think the verdict's still out on how much of the raw data, if any, has been cooked. Most of the snippets I've seen from CRU were misinterpreted by the people presenting them, although I'll agree with you that there's no reason science should be done behind closed doors. Hopefully this will result in increased transparency.
Bill_Illis
2.6 / 5 (7) Dec 07, 2009
This study is just a climate model output (spruced up like it was accurate or something).

CO2 was not 400 ppm 3 million years ago. It was just under 280 ppm.

So, temperatures were a 1C or 2C higher than today when CO2 was 280 ppm 3 million years ago.
wiserd
2.8 / 5 (9) Dec 07, 2009
bhiestand - My gripe is not with Gore oversimplifying or appeals to emotion but with his blatant misdirection. Historically, CO2 is a lagging indicator. He presented it as a leading one. Whose mistake was that? He claimed that the scientific debate on AGW was over, and is using this to imply that catastrophic AGW is a given. On what authority?

I don't think 'the masses' are at all dumb. Lead was removed from gasoline without this kind of dishonesty. CFCs were banned on the same factual grounds. Conservatives and liberals both understand a genuine environmental crisis and opposition is not based on ignorance or bad motives. Poor argumentation tends to create its own kind of blowback because people see AGW arguments put forward with shoddy logic and quite understandably lose trust.

I also hope this will lead to more transparency. I'm perplexed that peer review let this much garbage get by.

Which CRU snippets were misinterpreted?
marjon
2.9 / 5 (11) Dec 07, 2009
I breathe, therefore I pollute.

The US government declares CO2 a pollutant.
jonnyboy
2.3 / 5 (12) Dec 07, 2009
And on a side note, I'm getting real sick of all the AGW Denier crowd rating all climate-related articles 1 star... makes me feel like I'm back in primary school.

Just because us "deniers" as you would lable us mark all of your postings with one start does not mean that we mark all global warming postings with one star. I personally rate you one because your arguments and loose grip of the facts lead you into totally ridiculous statements
sams
3.7 / 5 (12) Dec 07, 2009
Lots of weird and wacky theories above - mostly old ones that have been debunked a hundred times over. If you manage to get a single one of them published in a top-tier climate science journal, let us know. If you think however that the scientists of a couple of hundred nations have formed some sort of amazingly intricate global conspiracy of a vastly unprecedented scale, preventing you from publishing in said journals, then perhaps you should consider publishing with the Flat-Earth Society.
omatumr
2.2 / 5 (10) Dec 08, 2009
Just as the Copenhagen conference was starting,

1. Study: Earth more sensitive to carbon dioxide than previously thought

2. EPA Administrator says CO2 is a dangerous pollutant

What timing! What a coincidence! Was the first study perhaps funded by the EPA Administrator?

With kind regards,
Oliver K. Manuel
Emeritus Professor of
Nuclear & Space Studies
Former NASA PI for Apollo

bhiestand
3.9 / 5 (7) Dec 08, 2009
I personally rate you one because your arguments and loose grip of the facts lead you into totally ridiculous statements

I said "articles", not "comments". I'm used to you guys rating my comments one star, even if they're as simple and fact-based as "buoys provide accurate temperature data as deep as 500 meters".... but It's a relatively new phenomenon to see a dozen of you guys swarm an article and watch the average rating go from 4.5/5 to 2/5.
MikeyK
3.4 / 5 (8) Dec 08, 2009

MikeyK -
Mann wrote:
The Medieval period is found to display warmth that matches or exceeds that of the past decade in some regions, but which falls well below recent levels
globally...The reconstructed MCA pattern is characterized
by warmth over a large part of the North
Atlantic, Southern Greenland, the Eurasian Arctic,
and parts of North America, which appears to substantially exceed that of the modern late-
20th century (1961-1990) baseline and is comparable
to or exceeds that of the past one-to-two
decades in some regions.
http://www.meteo....ce09.pdf


Mann is still qualifying his statements and still talks about significant cold areas, but he's no longer asserting that the MWP was limited to Europe.

Thanks for the link.
I don't think anyone said MWP was limited to Europe. The North Atlantic anomoly is concistant with changes in the gulf stream. This will affect those regions you mentioned, the warming was certainly global.
Velanarris
2.6 / 5 (10) Dec 08, 2009
Just think about it this way.

If man understood the weather, and had the technological capability to consistantly alter weather patterns with any degree of certainty, don't you think we'd use that to our advantage?

Do you think we'd make it rain over droughted regions? Would we warm up unusually cold northern and southern latitude winters to prevent the millions of deaths each yeah? Do you think we'd let heat waves bake people in Europe?

But most of all, if we really understood climate, do you think we'd be having a debate about whether we can or would we be having a debate about how best to?
defunctdiety
2.8 / 5 (9) Dec 08, 2009
man's greenhouse gas emissions raise the warming rate

You know darn well that's not the message they project.
Can you direct me to any currently enacted legislation

That is the proposal of the IPCC, "reductions of greenhouse gas emissions...needed to keep average temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees C (3.6 F) by the end of the century". From this article http://www.physor...firstCmt and many others like it stating the IPCC goal of global climate control. With carbon legislation, they are proposing they can control the global climate. I'm not making this up.
google "global dimming" before mocking people

I was not mocking. Global dimming is evidence for anthropogenic global cooling, evidence that if considered accurately would probably outweight CO2 radiative forcing.
There is a big difference.

Not really. "We can affect it." Okay. What does that mean? "We can make it warmer or cooler at will?" Thats just as absurd. No difference.
kasen
2.3 / 5 (6) Dec 08, 2009
Here's something about the proposed legislation: http://www.youtub...FSy6EKrM . Even AGW supporters see just how shady of a business they're gonna try to pull off at Copenhagen. I can't shake the feeling that WW3 is looming.
Tyrannical
1.8 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2009
Higher temperatures cause rising levels of CO2, rising CO2 doesn't cause rising temperatures.

Just like running low on gas causes the needle to move near the "E", but moving the needle to "F" does not make gas appear in my tank.
jgelt
2 / 5 (4) Dec 12, 2009
If you ask a scientist why nothing can move faster than the speed of light, he doesn’t tell you a terrible story about how koala bears will die if you don’t believe the theory is right, does he?
The UN served this to the children of the world:
http://www.youtub...mjBUSDng
This makes me very angry.
CO2 is not a pollutant nor will the climate be affected by 40 trillion dollars worth of lightweight, highly reflective Precautionary Headgear guaranteed to keep you cool in any weather. Get in on the derivatives bubble before it blows the global economy.

From an 11 year old:
http://www.youtub..._-SdAN04 home schooled, I’ll bet a dollar.

http://joannenova...ore-4660 best aggregation (with reference links)
http://joannenova...warming/ individual plots of raw australian data.
And climateaudit.com deserves the Pulitzer just like Woodward and Bernstein.
flaredone
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2009
It's proven statistically, people are making weather warmer and drier on per week basis - so no further evidence is necessary. Just try to extrapolate the weekend fluctuations to decades. http://news.bbc.c...6120.stm You can consider 9/11 climate study, too: http://en.wikiped...ct_study

We should replace the fossil fuels anyway, or we should pay even higher price due the global nuclear war. The prices of food and oil (and subsequent financial crisis) are consequence of Iraq war in similar way, like the oil crisis in the mid of 70's. http://public.del...2507.gif , http://burnickblo...food.jpg
Buyck
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 12, 2009
Keep it simple. We can not allow that we sit down and watch the CO2 levels rising. We must cut down ours emmisions immediately before it is to late to live a normal life. Its true in the past the levels where higher. But we humans could hardly not survive in such a extreme environment! Surtainly not the modern human of today in a even complicated world of global economy and trade. Climat change hase enormes impact on the economy!
marjon
3.5 / 5 (4) Dec 13, 2009
Keep it simple. We can not allow that we sit down and watch the CO2 levels rising. We must cut down ours emmisions immediately before it is to late to live a normal life. Its true in the past the levels where higher. But we humans could hardly not survive in such a extreme environment! Surtainly not the modern human of today in a even complicated world of global economy and trade. Climat change hase enormes impact on the economy!

Space is rather extreme and people are living there.

People have been living in the hot, wet rain forests and in the arctic and Siberia for thousands of years. I think humans can adapt to just about anything.
ealex
not rated yet Dec 13, 2009
Another long talk and bitter argument, again without the realization that most of it is built on the unknown and really poor science.

The UEA emails put a very big hole in what might have been held as the foundation of AGW research. Any opinions that AGW is solely valid now stand on one leg. It also seems that counter-arguments are almost equally full of assumptions and only in part of fact.

However since we ARE humans, and the existence of religion proves that we just CAN'T settle with "I DONT KNOW YET", we HAVE to do something.

I've said this a lot of time here, and I'll say it again, although both extreme sides will rate my comment 1/5, the fact that governments are promoting
ecology, recycling, energy saving, is excellent, it IS the direction we should be moving in and driving a gas sinkhole that eats up 40 liters / 100 km of a non-renewable fuel source, is simply STUPID.

ealex
not rated yet Dec 13, 2009
However creating radical policies and imposing those policies on industries and countries that can barely support themselves as it is, holding AGW at an alarmist standpoint and creating fear and panic and doom, is equally STUPID and wrong.

It is highly doubtful that we will have any resolution to this problem very soon, because climate science and our knowledge of the workings of our planets's atmosphere and the influence of the sun and even objects further out on it, is still scarce and worse off it is impeded by political and financial interests.

We fail. Again.
marjon
1 / 5 (2) Dec 13, 2009
{q]I've said this a lot of time here, and I'll say it again, although both extreme sides will rate my comment 1/5, the fact that governments are promoting
ecology, recycling, energy saving, is excellent, it IS the direction we should be moving in and driving a gas sinkhole that eats up 40 liters / 100 km of a non-renewable fuel source, is simply STUPID.
Why not unleash the power of the free market allow nuclear power plants and even the small generators built by Toshiba? Much could be done with power distribution if the government got out of the way.
Governments across the country prevent solutions.
pauljpease
5 / 5 (1) Dec 13, 2009
There is something missing from the debate in this important controversy. (And yes, to BOTH sides, it is a controversy, no matter how strongly you believe the data support your own conclusions. Controversy has nothing to do with facts, it just means there is a dispute.) Whether the climate is changing, whether it is changing for better or worse, whether it is changing due to human activities or not, something larger is going on here. Humanity is becoming self-aware, realizing that it does not exist in the vacuum of sibling rivalries, jealous lovers or merry Christmas parties. Those were the things of greatest importance in generations past. What is happening during this generation is that we are now becoming fully aware of our place in nature. Whether it is now or in the next generation, the status quo will change, and this is nature's teaching moment, so that we can learn how to adapt by working together. The question nature is putting to us is, given that everything changes, can we?
marjon
1 / 5 (2) Dec 13, 2009
The question nature is putting to us is, given that everything changes, can we?

Since humans have survived for 150,000+ years, why won't humans survive more change?
PinkElephant
3.7 / 5 (3) Dec 14, 2009
@marjon

Space is rather extreme and people are living there.

People have been living in the hot, wet rain forests and in the arctic and Siberia for thousands of years. I think humans can adapt to just about anything.


The question to all of the above points is, at what cost? Do you have, for example, any idea how expensive and complex it is to sustain human life in space? Why didn't modern civilization arise in the arctic or in the rainforests; why did it spawn and prosper in the temperate zones? Why are the arctic and the tropical populations so technologically unsophisticated, historically speaking -- and still impoverished today? Could it be something to do with the expense and difficulty of just plain survival: to a point where few resources remain to accumulate wealth and grow a civilization? Just some questions for you to ponder, Marjon: together with a stipulation of 9-11 billion in global population by 2050...
marjon
1 / 5 (1) Dec 14, 2009
Why didn't modern civilization arise in the arctic or in the rainforests; why did it spawn and prosper in the temperate zones? Why are the arctic and the tropical populations so technologically unsophisticated, historically speaking -- and still impoverished today? Could it be something to do with the expense and difficulty of just plain survival: to a point where few resources remain to accumulate wealth and grow a civilization? Just some questions for you to ponder, Marjon: together with a stipulation of 9-11 billion in global population by 2050...


Why did northern European civilizations conquer the Mediterranean ones? I submit it was the challenge to survive a winter. That requires planning and organization.
Velanarris
1 / 5 (1) Dec 14, 2009
Why did northern European civilizations conquer the Mediterranean ones? I submit it was the challenge to survive a winter. That requires planning and organization.


It's probably because they had more tin and therefore, more bronze available for weapons before the discovery and use of iron.
toyo
3 / 5 (2) Dec 14, 2009
Lots of weird and wacky theories above - mostly old ones that have been debunked a hundred times over. If you manage to get a single one of them published in a top-tier climate science journal, let us know. If you think however that the scientists of a couple of hundred nations have formed some sort of amazingly intricate global conspiracy of a vastly unprecedented scale, preventing you from publishing in said journals, then perhaps you should consider publishing with the Flat-Earth Society.

SAMS - whoever you are and whatever the cause of your smug, self-satisfied stance, please read the book "Heaven+Earth - Global Warming: The Missing Science" By Ian Plimer, published in 2009.
Professor Plimer, an internationally recognised authority in Geology, quotes not just one (of your precious 'top-tier climate science journal' publications) but 2,311 (that's two thousand, three hundred and eleven) in his book.
Your smugness is as unsound as your ignorance is great.
frajo
5 / 5 (2) Dec 14, 2009
Why did northern European civilizations conquer the Mediterranean ones? I submit it was the challenge to survive a winter. That requires planning and organization.
Maybe in order to learn words like "european" (Greek), "civilization" (Latin), "conquer" (Latin), "mediterranean" (Greek), "submit" (Latin), "challenge" (Old French < Latin), "survive" (Latin), "requires" (Latin), "planning" (Latin), and "organization" (Greek).
Velanarris
1 / 5 (2) Dec 16, 2009
To put the current crisis into context the global temperature difference between the Ice Age and now is only 2 degrees C.

That's funny.

Try 7 degrees C.
marjon
not rated yet Dec 16, 2009
Why did northern European civilizations conquer the Mediterranean ones? I submit it was the challenge to survive a winter. That requires planning and organization.
Maybe in order to learn words like "european" (Greek), "civilization" (Latin), "conquer" (Latin), "mediterranean" (Greek), "submit" (Latin), "challenge" (Old French < Latin), "survive" (Latin), "requires" (Latin), "planning" (Latin), and "organization" (Greek).


That's what the Brits did so well, adapt while France tries to prevent its language from adapting.
marjon
not rated yet Dec 17, 2009
Why did northern European civilizations conquer the Mediterranean ones? I submit it was the challenge to survive a winter. That requires planning and organization.


It's probably because they had more tin and therefore, more bronze available for weapons before the discovery and use of iron.

"In Greece and China, for instance, the Bronze Age began before 3000 bc, whereas in Britain it did not start until about 1900 bc."http://www.britan...onze-Age
Looks like the Greeks had a 1000 year head start.
bhiestand
5 / 5 (1) Dec 17, 2009
What are you actually arguing at this point? Mediterranean civilizations conquered their surrounding world at first, including the Anglo-Saxons. If you don't believe me, I'd be happy to show you the remnants of a Roman road in Germany. Later, the Northern/Western European civilizations clearly dominated the world.

You initially argued that Northern Europeans were able to conquer others because they learned vital skills due to their harsh winters. This has been clearly debunked. Further, it has absolutely nothing to do with the issue at hand.
frajo
not rated yet Dec 18, 2009
Erratum:
"mediterranean" (Greek)
is, of course, wrong as "mediterranean" is Latin. The Greek word is "mesogeios".
frajo
not rated yet Dec 18, 2009
I'd be happy to show you the remnants of a Roman road in Germany.
Britannia was a Roman province. See http://en.wikiped..._Britain
Later, the Northern/Western European civilizations clearly dominated the world.
Maybe in the 19th century, after the British opium wars in China; depends on one's perspective. There was Heng Zhe in China, there was Tariq ibn Ziyad and several centuries of Islamic dominance in Spain, the Mongol empire in the 13th century, there was Russia with its vast regions including Alasca.
A clear and really worldwide dominance of the west can be assumed only for the outgoing 19th and the 20th century. This era is ending just now.
MikeyK
3 / 5 (2) Dec 18, 2009
To put the current crisis into context the global temperature difference between the Ice Age and now is only 2 degrees C.

That's funny.
Try 7 degrees C.

Average global temperatures during the Younger Dryas were around 2 degrees cooler than the 1960-1991 mean (so make that around 2.5 degrees cooler than now). Average northern hemispheres were indeed around 7 degrees cooler. Strongly suggests a major thermohaline change.
You seem very exact with your 7 degrees, are you using those same proxy temperature measurements you enjoy attempting to debunk at every opportunity, or do you actually think they have merit now?
marjon
not rated yet Dec 18, 2009
Any discussion of politics and economics, especially on the AGW topics appropriate as governments around the world are using science as tools to control peoples lives.
"What is wrong with Marxism, psycho-analysis, and individual psychology? Why are they so different from physical theories, from Newton's theory, and especially from the theory of relativity?""
Popper, http://www.stephe...ion.html
Velanarris
1 / 5 (1) Dec 18, 2009
You seem very exact with your 7 degrees, are you using those same proxy temperature measurements you enjoy attempting to debunk at every opportunity, or do you actually think they have merit now?

Proxy measurements are a great indicator when they can be correlated with known events, for instance, volcanic eruptions. Secondly, when there are an overwhelming correlation of proxies the signal is not noise.

Trying to determine what the temp was on a year to year scale would be ridiculous but since the proxies show great correlation and are uniform over an extended period of time (tens of thousands of years) a baseline can be established.

It's 7 degrees. Good job attempting to confuse a long term multi proxy correlation with a single set of 3 tree rings of questionable veracity.