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World TemperaturesWorld Temperatures
World Temperatures (blue), CO2 (green) and Ice Volume (red)

Earth's ever changing Climate, II

The main reason for the existence of climatic regions on our planet is the tilting of the Earth's vertical axes and the elliptic rotation of the Earth around the sun. This causes the amount of incoming solar radiation to vary throughout a year. As a result we have four seasons each lasting around 90 days. For a seasonal overview see this extra terrestrial irradiation image (opens in a new window).

As said, the orbit of the Earth around the sun is not a perfect circle, this too is causing variations in the seasons and weather. It is more like an elliptical and during January the Earth is closest to the sun (perihelion). And even this ellipse is also not stable causing more changes in the incoming solar radiation (insolation).

Also variations in the output of the sun (energy) will too have an effect on our climate in the long term.

In this text, and the previous article, we will delve a bit deeper to understand the result of all these variables and we will see the effects on our climate realizing that real climate science can never be settled as we learn more and more each day.

Atmospheric influences

Greenhouse EffectGreenhouse Effect
Greenhouse Effect

Our atmosphere consists of a layer of gases surrounding our planet and it is kept there solely by its gravity caused by the Earth's magnetic field. It contains some 78 % Nitrogen, 21 % Oxygen, 0,93 % Argon, 0,04 % Carbon Dioxide (CO2), minute amounts of other gases and a variable amount (on average between 0-4 %) of water vapor (resulting in clouds and rain). This complete mixture is known to us as air.

Greenhouse effect?

Wikipedia: "Existence of the greenhouse effect as such is not disputed. Naturally occurring greenhouse gases have a mean warming effect of about 33 °C (59 °F), without which Earth would be uninhabitable".
Well maybe, I would say that daily exposure to the sun due to the rotation of the planet keeps us warm in combination with 70% of the surface being water (stabilizing the warmth), controls the climate more than you think. Any gas in the atmosphere only just serves to slow down the infrared radiation from the earth back to space.

In fact: The Earth is not a greenhouse. It is always in the process of absorbing and discharging heat via the atmosphere and the oceans. If it retained heat all life on Earth would die. Even on a hot summer’s day, it will cool at night. Deserts, too, are often cooler at night. As for carbon dioxide, it is a trace gas in the atmosphere at barely 0,04%, but it is also the gas which all vegetation requires. In turn, vegetation gives off oxygen while we humans and other animals exhale carbon dioxide.

"In our open-to-space atmosphere, the excellent radiating properties of all so-called "greenhouse gases" serve to cool the atmosphere, never to warm it. Any and all gases in our atmosphere cool the planet, either by absorbing solar radiation on its way to the surface or by taking energy away from the surface but at no stage can any gas add energy. In reality, it is the oxygen and nitrogen that act as "greenhouse gases" – they retain heat much longer than the gases now labeled such." (Source: Hans Schreuder, Final Analysis: Climate Change – Man-made or not?). There seems to be some merit to his research.

Cloudy days

The same happens on a cloudy day, it just stays cooler and seemingly warmer at night. But if the cloudiness continues for days it will eventually cool off due to the lack of incoming energy from the sun. So water vapor controls the temperature more than any trace gas.

Prof. Murry Salby

To suggest, however, that climate change is influenced by too much carbon dioxide lacks all scientific merit. There simply isn’t enough CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere to have any impact and levels have been higher without higher temperatures in the past. Scientific research (source: Professor Murry Salby, Chair of Climate Science at Macquarie University.) has proven that CO2 levels follow temperature change than the other way around. The same effect can be seen with warm air, this can contain more water vapor than cold air.

An excellent presentation from Prof. Salby can be seen in the next YouTube video: Atmospheric Carbon, 18 July 2016, University College London. In this presentation he debunks, in a very clear way, the premise that antropogenic CO2 causes climate change once and for all.

Heat lost in space

In ScienceDaily (July 29, 2011) Dr. Spencer concedes, "The satellite observations suggest there is much more energy lost to space during and after warming than the climate models show. There is a huge discrepancy between the data and the forecasts that is especially big over the oceans." The second law of thermodynamics would explain this.

Visual presentation

A very nice presentation on the relative amounts of carbon dioxide, methane and water in our atmosphere can be seen in this YouTube video on 'CO2 contributed by human activity by 1ElisaPardo', click here.

Tectonic movements

Shifting continents and the subsequent sea floor spreading cause a change in ocean currents (think El Niño and La Niña) influencing world wide climate. Volcanic eruptions are also a good example of tectonic movement, as you will usually find volcano's where two tectonic plates meet.

Volcanic emissions

These volcanic eruptions emit enormous amounts of water vapor, ashes and gases in the atmosphere. The soot and ashes are able to block the sun, causing worldwide temperature drops and this has its effect on our climate.

It is reasonably safe to say that the amount of man made CO2 in the atmosphere (about 3 % of the total 395 ppm) does not really contribute to the greenhouse effect. Its just a tiny drop in the scheme of bigger things that are happening.

CO2 is plant food

It has been proven once and for all: CO2 is fertilizing the planet. CSIRO research satellite measurements have shown that our planet has become greener than 30 years ago (source: ScienceDaily July 8, 2013). This means more food for all the people we need to feed. Trying to reduce CO2 from our atmosphere is almost like committing genocide and should be illegal.

Sun activity

Solar Cycle and Earth Temperature

At the moment the sun is coming out of a solar minimum where in 2009 the sun had 260 days and in 2010 had 51 days without any sunspots. A growing number of scientists are convinced that there is a correlation between the amount of solar spots and temperature on Earth. More papers now show that we can expect a cooling of 1 °C in some locations.

Click the graph for a larger and more readable image.

As you can see there is a strong relation between solar spots and the temperature on our planet and if the current trend continues we could see our global average temperatures drop by a half a degree (-0,5 °C) of even more.

Ice Ball EarthIce Ball Earth
Dryas to Present Time

If we would even look further back (400000 years) we will see an even more disturbing fact: Most of the time our planet is in a frozen state. See image to the right, click the image to see an image of the timeline from Dryas to the present time. For a large image (3000px) click here.

In the top left corner of the image it can be seen that the temperature rises before CO2 levels increase. As already said: as with water vapor, warm air can hold more.

It is only the last couple of thousand years we can enjoy a nice warm climate and it is in this period when the human race thrived and became successful. And to the AGW society I wish to say: do you prefer an ice age or nice warm temperatures?


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