Mar 24 2009

There Is No Atmospheric Green House Effect

Published by at 9:20 am under All General Discussions,Global Warming


Reader Crosspatch referred us to this excellent scientific paper (which has been out in one form or another for almost two years now) which debunks the entire man-made global warming myth at its source – the fact that no one has (or can) prove there is a “Greenhouse Effect”. It is a fascinating read and notes how real green houses warm up by heating the trapped air which cannot be cooled by convection (hot air rises, cool air drops in to take up the heat being absorbed by the ‘ground’).  

The IPCC green house theory (which is proven to be false) relies on a radiation imbalance between the Sun and the reflecting/emitting Earth. It assumes visible light comes in, is absorbed by the ground, etc, and then heat radiation (infrared) is transmitted out. It assumes (wrongly) that infrared cannot escape the glass or atmosphere and that is how heat builds up (not because the air cannot be refreshed). 

The paper is especially illuminating in its discussion on a car getting hot in the sun on the inside, while the ground and air right outside the car doesn’t. If radiation was the real mechanism (as all the priests at the Church of Al Gore/IPCC claim) then there would not be so much warming ‘inside’ relative to the outside.

In fact, the paper notes an experiment where a “salt house” was developed (because salt does pass infrared as easily as visible light) and it was shown both the ‘salt and ‘glass’ houses warmed at the same rate, even though there was no trapping of the infrared radiation in the salt house.

In fact, the salt house warmed more and faster – because of one monumental mistake made by the entire man-made global warming community! The priests of IPCC assume the sun generates more visible light than infrared, and it is the infrared radiation from the earth which is heating the atmosphere. They assume the heat from the Earth is trapped because the atmosphere captures the infrared but passes the visible.

But the reality is the Sun produces radiation in the following bands and percentages based on black-body radiation models (used to model suns): Ultraviolet (UV) – 10%, visible light 44.8%, Infrared (IR) 45.2%! The Sun produces more energy in the IR than in the visible. Those same atmospheric molecules absorbing the Earth’s IR is also absorbing the Sun’s IR – and guess which IR source is orders of magnitude larger? Does the Earth glow and shed light to planets across this solar system? 

This really is just a stunning point. The Green House effect would have to work both ways. If trapped IR radiation by CO2 (which only accounts for 7% of the so called green house gases) is the driver behind global warming then it should be taking off like a rocket given how much IR is coming from the Sun. The Sun is an IR generator that dwarfs whatever heat is coming from the Earth’s surface. But we all know the CO2 has been rising the last ten years and the temperature has been dropping. What gives?

I find it completely dumbfounding that the IPCC and others never proved their IR radiation imbalance theories. Not once! In fact, the paper lists a string of smart sounding but incoherent and wrong statements about how green houses work and the atmosphere. In a shining example of getting so complicated in the their thinking they misses the obvious is this one:

Claim: The carbon dioxide in the atmosphere lets the radiation of the Sun, whose maximum lies in the visible light, go through completely, while on the other hand it absorbs a part of the heat radiation emitted by the Earth into space because of its larger wavelength. This leads to higher near-surface air temperatures.”

Disproof: The first statement is incorrect since the obviously non-neglible infrared part of the incoming solar radiation [ajstrata: the 45.2% of the solar radiation] is being absorbed (cf. Section 2.2). The second statement is falsied by referring to a counterexample known to every housewife: The water pot on the stove. Without water filled in, the bottom of the pot will soon become glowing red. Water is an excellent absorber of infrared radiation. However, with water filled in, the bottom of the pot will be substantially colder.

The boiling water example is brilliant in its simplicity and ability connect to just about anyone. The heat from the Earth’s surface is carried away by the air which rises and drops the heat off in the upper atmosphere and into space. Just like the water in the pot. Heat is not dissipated by radiation, it is by conduction to the air and then convection of the air to remove the heat. 

So it seems the entire Global Warming ‘science’ is built upon science fiction assumptions that defy the real laws of physics! They’ll grant a PhD to just about anyone these days.

Addendum: Clarification – the paper also notes that some or much of the Sun’s IR is reflected back into space by the ionosphere, which is probably why the paper keeps noting the ‘non-negligible” solar IR levels. Note; This reflection boundary is not part of the IPCC green house model.

Update: IPCC ‘science’ is based on 19th century theories – never proven:

In their research and review papers the climatologists refer to legendary publications of Svante August Arrhenius (19 Feb. 1859 – 2 Oct. 1927), a Nobel Prize winner for chemistry. Arrhenius published one of the earliest, extremely simple calculations in 1896, which were immediately - and correctly – doubted and have been forgotten for many decades [44{46]. It is a paper about the influence of carbonic acid in the air on the Earth’s ground temperature. In this quite long paper, Arrhenius put the hypothesis up for discussion, that the occurrences of warm and ice ages are supposed to be explainable by certain gases in the atmosphere, which absorb thermal radiation.

I am fairly certain physics has evolved quite a bit since the First World War.

Major Update: I want to, once more, go to the boiling pot model to explain why there is no radiative green house effect as the IPCC claims (some clown on Powerline doesn’t understand that the ‘real’ green house effect is heat transferred by conduction and then trapped by limiting convection – which the atmosphere can do with clouds, etc).

If the radiative model existed at all then the following would not happen:

3.8.3 In the kitchen: Physics-obsessed housewife versus IPCC

In Section 3.3.5 it was indicated how simple it is to falsify the atmospheric greenhouse hypotheses, namely by observing a water pot on the stove: Without water filled in, the bottom of the pot will soon become glowing red. However, with water lled in, the bottom of the pot will be substantially colder.

In particular, such an experiment can be performed on a glass-ceramic stove. The role of the Sun is played by the electrical heating coils or by infrared halogen lamps that are used as heating elements. Glas-ceramic has a very low heat conduction coecient, but lets infrared radiation pass very well. The dihydrogen monoxide in the pot, which not only plays the role of the “greenhouse gas” but also realizes a very dense phase of such a magic substance, absorbs the infrared extremely well. Nevertheless, there is no additional “backwarming” effect of the bottom of the pot. In the opposite, the ground becomes colder.

Dihydrogen monoxide is of courtse water. But what the pot shows is is there is no radiation back to the pot from the water molecules (the number one “green house” molecule). The heat transfer process is completely overwhelmed by convection and conduction with water in place, and the run away heating is contained to ‘the ground’ when there is not sufficient water or air to transport the heat out. 

The fact is there is no proof or evidence of a radiation driven green house effect, therefore there is no physical reality to the IPCC theories. Remove the concept of CO2 absorbing and re-emitting IR heat creating a feedback heating from the IPCC assumptions and they have nothing. The heat transfer of the atmosphere is in convection and conduction – which has nothing to do with CO2 specifically (any atoms or molecules convey heat through these methods).

Moreover, the regulating of the Earth’s climate is more likely due to the vast oceans which are heat sinks. The warm, livable atmospheric conditions are driven more by the heat contained in the 75% of the planet which is covered by water (which is why coastal cities and towns are degrees warmer than their inland cousins a few miles away). 

Basically, these goofs at the IPCC have it completely wrong because they don’t have the knowledge and mathematical skills to apply the equations they misuse.

Addendum: The confusion also seems to be that no one is aware that the IPCC doesn’t assume the driving force is convection (which is neutral regarding the trace gas CO2 verses H2O vapor). The paper lists a long litany of evidence that the IPCC assumes CO2 is the global warming culprit because of their mythical IR radiation transport via CO2 – why else focus on CO2 in the first place? Yes, there is heat energy in the atmosphere, but it is driven by conduction and convection – which means CO2 is no different from any other molecule in the air. Duh.

Some snippets of the IPCC claims:

“If one raises the concentration of carbon dioxide, which absorbs the infrared light and lets visible light go through, in the Earth’s atmosphere, the ground heated by the solar radiation and/or near-surface air will become warmer, because the cooling of the ground is slowed down.”

“In a real glass house (with no additional heating, i.e. no greenhouse) the window panes are transparent to sunshine, but opaque to terrestrial radiation. The heat exchange must take place through heat conduction within the glass, which requires a certain temperature gradient. Then the colder boundary surface of the window pane can emit heat. In case of the atmosphere water vapor and clouds play the role of the glass.”

“Name for the influence of the Earth’s atmosphere on the radiation and heat budget of the Earth, which compares to the effect of a glass house: Water vapor and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere let short wave solar radiation go through down to the Earth’s surface with a relative weak attenuation and, however, reflect the portion of long wave (heat) radiation which is emitted from the Earth’s surface (atmospheric backradiation).”

These are all wrong statements (might as well say the Earth is flat and the Sun orbits the Earth). There are plenty more in the paper. The point is the IPCC cannot target CO2 UNLESS the driver of heat transfer is this mythical IR radiation loop. It doesn’t exist, QED their models and predictions are fiction.

25 responses so far

25 Responses to “There Is No Atmospheric Green House Effect”

  1. crosspatch says:

    The thing is that it is very easy to use a term like “greenhouse” that most people are familiar with and they can understand and then you make them afraid but offer them a path to deliverance if they just elect you to office and allow you to control industry.

    To debunk the idea, you have to be talking to someone that understands the math and physics involved.

    What we have today is a situation where if 51% of the people “believe in” something, it becomes truth. So it isn’t a matter of whether it is true or not, it is if one side is able to “sell” it to a greater number of people. That is what Hansen is complaining about when he said last week that the “democratic process” isn’t working in policy.

    Well, you can’t vote on physics. Things are what they are, one’s beliefs notwithstanding. We have increasing adult illiteracy, we have people who get their “news” from facebook. We are becoming an idiocracy. When 50% of the population is below the median intelligence level, it becomes very easy to sell them on things like this with simple concepts they can understand and very difficult to explain why those ideas are wrong when you need some understanding of physics to understand the argument.

    Before all the atmospheric CO2 was turned into oil, shale, gas, coal, limestone, and marble, it was in the atmosphere. The atmosphere had about 7,000 parts/million of CO2. It now has about 380ppm. When the atmosphere was at 7,000 ppm, the temperature was about 5 degrees warmer than now. It didn’t go into “runaway” and it didn’t destroy life.

    When modern fish and corals evolved, the CO2 content was down to about 1500 to 2000 parts/million. People rant that an increase in CO2 from 350ppm to 380ppm is “acidifying the ocean” and hurting species. And that is bunk because those species lived for millions of years when CO2 was much higher and thrived. In fact, only about 10,000 years ago the Great Barrier Reef was completely dead. It was dead because it was 400 feet above sea level. Ocean levels in the last ice age were about 400 to 500 feet lower than they are now. Every single coral reef we know today is less than 10,000 years old if it is in less than 400 feet of water.

    The reason the models go into runaway is that they assume an “infinitely thick” atmosphere. They assume an atmosphere than can not shed its heat at altitude. It assumes that the heat from the sun warms the CO2 and what leaks through heats the Earth and the Earth’s radiation further heats the atmosphere creating a “hot spot” in the troposphere several miles up. That isn’t happening. When you heat air (even air containing CO2) it rises. When it rises, it rises above most of the other CO2 in the atmosphere and its heat is radiated into space.

    A litmus test for the “greenhouse” effect is warming oceans. If there is a greenhouse, the oceans would be warming. They aren’t. Over the past several years the oceans have been cooling. Sea level rise which has been pretty much linear for the past thousand years or so stopped in 2006.

    No hot spot, no ocean warming, no sea level rise. YOU ARE BEING LIED TO. Trouble is, too few people understand well enough to realize it. And those that DO understand are being bribed with research grants or are being fired when then voice their opinions.

    It is the biggest scam ever foisted on the people of the earth.

  2. crosspatch says:

    Also, atmospheric response to CO2 isn’t linear. Imagine an atmosphere with no CO2. If you add X parts per million to get a degree of temperature increase, you need to add 10 * X to get the next degree of rise. And then you need to add 100 * X to get the next degree of rise. Most of the impact of CO2 is already realized. That is why increasing CO2 to 7000 parts/million only results in a 5 degree rise in temperature.

    Oh, and another thing … all this fuss is about 0.7 degree rise over 100 years. It turns out that 0.5 degrees of that isn’t real. It is hidden in “adjustments” made to the temperature records. In other words, NOAA fudges the numbers and “adjusts” them up 0.5 degrees. Temperatures from the early part of the century are left unadjusted. Global warming is man made, alright, but not in the way you are expected to believe.

  3. crosspatch says:

    Here is another little tidbit about where people are being mislead. Weather is generated by differences in temperature. The greater the difference in temperature between two air masses, the stronger the storms will result when those masses collide.

    People are being led to believe that “global warming” is responsible for an increase in Midwestern US tornado activity. The fact is that cooling can be just as responsible. When cooler air flows down from the upper plains, it is the same as warmer air flowing up from the gulf. It isn’t the absolute temperature that creates the storm, it is the difference in temperature between the air masses.

    Air coming up from the Gulf of Mexico is mainly determined by the temperature of the water. Air flowing down from Canada is mainly determined by how much heat it can radiate into space. In a global warming scenario, the air coming from Canada would be warmer (because in the Global Warming model, temperatures at higher latitudes are impacted more) while air from the Gulf would be about the same. That is because it takes a very long time (months) to heat up water but it takes a very small amount of time (hours) to cool air. In a global warming situation, Midwestern tornadoes would DECREASE because the air flowing down from Canada would be warmer. There would be less difference in temperature with air flowing up from the Gulf. In a global cooling scenario, the difference would be greater and there would be more storms.

    Same with hurricanes. Hurricanes intensify mainly at night. This is because it is, again, temperature difference that drives a storm. The greater the difference in temperature between the surface and the air aloft, the more convection you get. It is convection that drives a storm. In global warming, the air aloft should get warmer. This should REDUCE convenction and result in weaker storms, not stronger storms. Global warming “experts” also rely on surface temperatures. What they need to rely on is the DIFFERENCE between surface temperature and the temperature at the top of the eye wall. The greater the difference, the stronger, the convection, and the more powerful the winds. The less difference, the weaker the convection.

    It isn’ t the surface anomaly that causes the storms, it is the anomaly of surface temp minus aloft temp that will tell you how much storm potential you have with tropical storms. If the air aloft is cold, you are bound to get stronger storms. If the sea surface is warmer you will get more storms started. If the surface is warmer AND the air aloft is colder you will get more storms and more powerful storms provided the winds aren’t so strong aloft that they blow the tops off the convection (sheer).

    A storm is a heat engine. It works on the difference in heat between two points, not the absolute heat at one point.

  4. daniel ortega says:

    Just a question and I mean no disrespect.
    I understand the argument but why this?
    On a winter night, if the sky is clear, there is frost on the ground.
    But on a winter night, if later, a blanket of clouds come over,
    then there is no frost on the ground.
    The blanket of clouds appears to trap the heat, No?
    If the mechanism was just due to the convection then,
    it wouldn’t make any difference?

    I don’t like the eco-lunatics. I just want to understand.
    The convection only theory does not seem to fit my own observations.

  5. AJStrata says:


    The clouds trap the heat by not allowing the air column to lift the warm air up where it is dissipated in space. That is not a radiation feedback loop. That is convection being limited by a mass of water vapor (the clouds).

    The main point is that convection (moving molecules rising with heat) and conduction (heat transfered by ‘touching’ – basically rapidly moving molecules banging into others and heating them up) do not differentiate CO2 from any other molecule. If these are the primary heat pump for the atmosphere, then removing or adding CO2 will have no measurable effect.

    The IPCC targets CO2 only because of their mythical IR feedback theory. If the IR feedback theory is not valid (and this paper shows that in spades) then the cap $ trade in CO2 levels is a useless exercise is futility.

  6. crosspatch says:


    Water vapor IS a powerful greenhouse gas. Clouds DO prevent the ground from losing its heat to space. Another example is simple humidity in the air. The difference in temperature in July between Miami at 4am and Tucson at 4am is the difference in water vapor. Water vapor is by far the dominant greenhouse gas in the atmosphere and it is MUCH more efficient at blocking IR.

    It is interesting that it appears that as CO2 increases in the upper troposphere, it displaces water vapor … so as CO2 increases the absolute humidity of the upper troposphere drops causing temperatures to COOL because CO2 is less efficient of a greenhouse gas than water is.

  7. crosspatch says:

    Also, there is somewhat of a greenhouse effect in that CO2 and water vapor does cause SOME warming, just not the way the models do it. The models assume the heat is trapped as in a greenhouse and just keeps building up.

    What the impact of CO2 and (mostly) water vapor do is slow the cooling at night. You would not see greenhouse warming manifest in higher high temperatures, you would see it manifest in higher LOW temperatures.

    That is why the models show that greenhouse warming should be greatest at the poles. Because the air at the poles is extremely dry, CO2 should be the dominant gas that prevents all the heat from Earth being radiated away.

    And it does, just not to the extent of via the mechanism of the climate models.

  8. AJStrata says:

    CP, the only effect is the limitation on convection – which is how a real greenhouse works.

    But even if there is a marginal IR feedback, it cannot compete or overwhelm the convection/conduction mechanisms. The reason CO2 is targeted by the IPCC is because they assume the IR feedback forces can drive the thermal balance – which is a total crock.

    The air convection/conduction mechanisms don’t distinguish CO2 from any other element of the air mix. And it is clearly shown in the paper that the IR feedback – even if it exists – cannot compete or overwhelm the convection mechanisms.

    Therefore, adjust CO2 levels has ZERO measurable effect based on the IR loop. Since the convection loop drives climate and CO2 is no different from water vapor (the dominate molecules) in that mechanism the IPCC is wasting our time.

    And this is a scientific proof, not conjecture. Simply ask the IPCC if the IR loop of CO2 radiation is miniscule compare to the convection mechanism (my assumption) and the Solar IR flux if adjusting CO2 levels will make a difference.

  9. Wayne at Jeremiah Films says:

    I’ve linked to your article from Discerning Science – Global Warming – Atmosphere which is a several part collection of articles taking an honest and close look, to Discerning the Science of Global Warming which appears to be revealing that Global Warming is not about science it is about control.

  10. russellshih says:

    A interesting post, does create doubt about the global-warming debate. I will have to come down on the side of cooling, but that doesn’t really have anything to do with the debate, for a believe that if we are warming or cooling it doesn’t make any difference. The truth is simple, either way there is nothing mere man can do about it—-we haven’t gotten that smart yet. Those deeply involved on both sides of the debate have their own agendas and it has little to do with cooling or warming—-that is another story. Theories are just that, theories and at present there is no way to prove either side. Man cannot even say which leaf will fall first from a mighty oak on a fall day—and yet, some say they have the answer to global warming or cooling—what a joke.

  11. fprbrtsn says:

    This all very well, but how are we going to keep those in control, the government, from making bad laws and rules as a result of their belief in bad science? I see this administration and congress causing nothing but trouble. How do we change the publics mind?

  12. GuyFawkes says:


    I know this is totally OT, but there isn’t a recent post that wouldn’t be:

    Did you see Obama’s response to the Washington Times’ question about adult vs. embryonic stem cell research (happened about 8:49pm EST)? If so, what did you think?

  13. AJStrata says:


    Have been on the road, will check it out.


    BTW – don’t get forum fever and sink into the give and take. Been there, done that, waste of time.

  14. GuyFawkes says:


    Should show up on YouTube soon. I liked the answer, but I know the ESCR is one of your “things” – curious on your take. (Make sure you watch the answer, and the answer to the follow-up question.)

    And don’t worry about forum fever – the handful of people here (including yourself) that are interested in serious discussion will be treated respectfully. The rest – *brushes off shoulder*.

  15. crosspatch says:

    Looks like fossil fuel might not be the source of increased atmospheric CO2.

    It sort of goes like this … during open air atomic weapons testing, a lot of CO2 containing radioactive carbon-14 was produced. Scientists monitored this radioactive CO2 and learned that it took a period of years before the 14C was uniformly distributed between the hemispheres.

    Now here we have an interesting problem because 75% of human CO2 emissions are in the Northern Hemisphere. So we should see a lot more CO2 in the Northern Hemisphere if human CO2 emissions were significant. Trouble is, we don’t. CO2 is equally mixed between hemispheres. And sometimes the Southern Hemisphere increases lead Northern Hemisphere increases.

    All of this is another indicator that atmospheric CO2 LAGS temperature changes by a significant period of time. As water warms, it releases CO2. We didn’t fully recover from the Little Ice Age until the early 20th Century. The oceans at depth are probably still recovering in temperature and as they do so, release CO2. Near the surface, the oceans are currently cooling and have been for about 4 to 5 years but at depth, they could still be recovering from the LIA. We don’t measure temperatures on the abyssal plains.

    So we have 75% of the CO2 emitted in the Northern Hemisphere but CO2 rising in both at the same time or sometimes the Southern Hemisphere leading the Northern Hemisphere.

  16. crosspatch says:

    Also, this paper goes into the differences between the modeled predictions for climate forcings and the observed reality. The differences are astounding in that the predicted atmospheric warming isn’t simply different from or less than the prediction, it is completely absent. It just isn’t there.

    Another very interesting point shown is that we have been in a general cooling trend for the past thousand or more years. Temperatures are only now recovering to the 3000 year AVERAGE temperature according to ice core studies,

    While today’s temperatures are significantly higher than they were in the early 1800’s, the early 1800’s was the end of one of the coldest periods in the past 2000 years.

    The thermometer was invented in the 1700’s, also during this cold period. What we are witnessing is a climate recovering to “average”. We are led to believe that the climate of the 1800’s was “normal” when in fact it was well below average.

    In 2006 we were just approaching “average” but it looks like recovery has stopped and we are now cooling again. We are probably in a period of variability that comes just before the start of a new ice age. We are due. Interglacial periods don’t last longer than 15-20 thousand years. Ice ages last for a hundred thousand or more.

    The change will be quick, too. Probably going to very cool temperatures over the span of a person’s lifetime. We won’t really have time to react and the humans that inhabit most of the earth at the moment are highly warm adapted. Highly cold adapted people such as the Dorset people died out during the Medieval Warm Period when they were replaced by the less cold adapted Thule and Inuit people.

  17. Wednesday Link Fiesta…

    Busy day today, so I’m going to leave you with some links of interest. You lucky people. From the Department of Stupid Euphemisms, we have a new name for the War on Terror: it’s now the Overseas Contingency Operation! Yay!……

  18. Dorf77 says:

    daniel ortega et al The frost can occur because of the radiation effect. Simply the net heat radiated between two bodies at different temperatures is defined as absolute value of temperature one raised to the fourth power minus absolute value of temperature two to the fourth power, times a constant. Using the metric system of units you add 273 to the temperatures in degrees C before you do the exponent function. On an ordinary day with a clear sky at night and an ambient temp of 0 C the equation is something like Q= K*[273**4-4**4] where earth is 0+273 degrees absolute and the night sky is about 4 degrees absolute. This is a very large number even with very small K. K is a function of many things, some are color and surface finish.

    If there is cloud cover the second temperature is that of the cloud not cold space.

    This can explain frost on a car window but not on warmer ground when the ambient air is around freezing and the ground is slightly warmer on a clear night vs no frost on a cloudy night.

  19. Neo says:

    With all the research money being spent on AGW, it really amazing that the IPCC CO2 “signature” still has not been found.

    The CO2 “signature” is supposed to be elevated heating at about 18 km above the equator. To date, it has never been found.

  20. Redteam says:

    this subject is one that really causes problems with a lot of Democrats. Many of them are atheist because there is no ‘scientific’ proof of God, but then on this subject there is ‘absolute’ scientific proof and they choose to ignore it.
    I think that means that they choose to believe what fits their lifestyle or political beliefs.