IPCC more cynical than ever
11/24/2018 07:38 - Posted by Tom van Leeuwen
The complete title of the latest IPCC report
is: "Global warming of 1.5 °C - An IPCC Special Report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty".
This is a political report. There is no scientific proof in the whole report that shows a link between CO2
and rising temperatures. There's not even proof that rising temperatures are dangerous. The temperature levels for which they warn are below the normal, natural levels during most of the Holocene. There is nothing dangerous about that. Humanity owes its development precisely to the higher temperatures of this interglacial.
They claim they'll propose "efforts to eradicate poverty"... But they do not! There is not a single concrete proposal to eradicate poverty, their reasoning is the same as ever: CO2
causes warming, warming causes all kinds of disasters, the disasters hit mostly the poor people, so... eliminating CO2
will eradicate poverty. Something like that. It's all based on unproven hypotheses.
But there’s not a word to be found about the real consequences of the policies they propose. They want to eliminate fossil fuels. The cheap energy that has been the main driver behind the success of the developed nations.
How does the IPCC want the poor countries in the world to develop after they take away their access to cheap energy?
And all over the world, it will be precisely the poor who will be hardest hit by surging energy prices and unreliable energy supply from renewable sources.
The IPCC promises to eradicate poverty but the policies they propose will result in the exact opposite.
It comes as no surprise that developing countries start to wake up
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The hypothesis of "man-made climate change" tells us that the increase in the concentration of CO2 enhances the greenhouse effect
of the atmosphere and has global warming
as a final result.
Since the beginning of the industrialized era around 1850, man emits relatively large amounts of CO2
into the atmosphere through the use of fossil fuels. The consequence of these emissions is that during that period, the concentration of CO2
in the atmosphere increased sharply from about 300 parts per million to more than 400 ppm, an increase of almost 40%. The average temperature increased in the same period more or less 1.5 °C with a small variation depending on the data source used.
The political reports of the IPCC are based on the hypothesis that CO2
is the most important control knob of the Earth's temperature. The problem is that this hypothesis does not correspond at all with the empirical data available to science. Forecasts are made using models that are not capable of 'predicting' the past
When discussing “Climate Change” it’s good to have an understanding of how the Earth’s climate has changed in the past. That will give us a reference to decide whether the current changes are normal or not.
Global temperatures have varied a lot over the last 500 million years. Depending on the timescale used, the current temperature is either cold or hot, so when you want to know the “normal temperature” you’ll have to indicate what timescale you’re using.
Professor at the Geophysical Sciences department at the University of Chicago David Archer describes the band-saturation of the CO2
greenhouse effect. After that, everything goes wrong.
The first part of the lecture is very informative. Professor Archer explains in great detail how the CO2
greenhouse absorption works, it's logarithmic nature and the band-saturation. He even shows on a working instance of the MODTRAN model how adding the first ppm of CO2
to the atmosphere has a huge impact on the atmosphere's energy balance. Adding more CO2
, the effect fades away.
Hydropower is one of the cleanest energy sources available. The only downsides known so far are the impact on the landscape and the risk of a dam breaking due to earthquakes. Carefully choosing the locations and high construction standards are needed to solve these problems.
Besides electricity generation, dams also help to regulate the water flow in the rivers, making them better navigatable and useful for irrigation.
So, overall it seems to be quite positive, but recent research has "discovered" a new downside to hydroelectricity and it's a usual suspect: Greenhouse gasses
Interview with Professor William Happer
of Princeton University. Mr. Happer is a renowned physicist, specialized in the field of atomic physics, adaptive optics and spectrometry. This interview from 2015 is part of the series "Conversations that Matter."
Some quotes from this interview:
For many people, a logarithmic relationship can be a fairly abstract concept. It is hard to imagine the implication that it has on the strength of the greenhouse effect that corresponds to the amount of CO2
that humanity emits into the atmosphere. Here we present a visualization to explain in a simple way what we are talking about.
is a greenhouse gas. The presence of CO2
in the atmosphere traps a part of the infrared radiation that the Earth's surface emits into space. The total greenhouse effect of the Earth's atmosphere is about 30 °C, without this effect, the temperature would be -15 °C instead of +15 °C, the actual current average temperature.
Water vapor is the most important greenhouse gas. CO2 provides 3 °C of heating, that is, 10% of the total effect
When the concentration of CO2
increases, its greenhouse effect also increases, but not in a linear fashion, but logarithmically
. For each increase in concentration, the effect on temperature is less and less.
Water vapor is the single most important greenhouse gas. It makes up 80% to 90% of the total greenhouse effect of the Earth's atmosphere.
Climate models depend on water vapor as a positive feedback for supposed CO2
warming. In these models, CO2
causes a tiny warming that causes the relative atmospheric humidity to increase. That increase in water vapor produces the catastrophic warming they predict.
The problem is that in the real world, while atmospheric CO2
-concentrations increased by almost 30% since the end of World War II, the relative atmospheric humidity has been stable at low altitudes and has even decreased at higher altitudes.