Global Warming: It is a hoax. It is bad science. It is high jacking public policy. It is the greatest scam in history.
John Coleman (Co-Founder of The Weather Channel)
It is easier to believe a lie one has heard a thousand times than to believe a fact that no one has heard before.
Facts are stubborn things, but statistics are more pliable.
Laurence J. Peter
Facts are facts and will not disappear on account of your likes.
We want the facts to fit the preconceptions. When they don’t, it is easier to ignore the facts than to change the preconceptions.
I have teased you several times with statements about Global Warming and said that I am not a believer. When it comes to Global warming, every “fact” seems to have a “counter-fact.” Having been a scientist for 40 years, I know that this is not true. As Laurence Peter said, “facts are stubborn things.” Here is question #1: if global warming is “settled science,” why are so many scientists “unsettled?” The very phrase “settled science” leads one to immediately suspect that the data employed “to settle” the issue will not withstand scrutiny. Those who believe in global warming will want to disbelieve my “facts” in favor of their “facts” because they need the facts to fit a preconception.
The furor over global warming was kicked into overdrive when Al Gore made a movie entitled An Inconvenient Truth. For this film he won not only an Oscar, but also the Nobel Peace Prize (if one ever needed proof the Nobel Peace Prize should be re-entitled the Nobel Political Pap Prize, this is it). Let me start with a fact that cannot be challenged. The “facts” in his movie were adjudicated in the High Court of London and found to be wanting. Yes, that is correct, the High Court of London ruled that the movie was bullshit! Of course, a British jurist would never use such crude language. The ruling listed 35 factual errors. The actual errors are interesting, but I will make one point only. All of the errors pointed in one direction, toward overestimating the increase in global warming and their significance to Earth’s environment. That is a statistical impossibility. Only one possible conclusion can be drawn from this fact: this is not science but environmental activism.
To begin, Al Gore’s environmental advisor, Ms. Kalee Kreider, testified that it was filled with “thousands and thousands of facts.” However, here is an undeniable computational fact: it was not and could not have been filled with “thousands and thousands of facts.” Just 2,000 “facts” in a 93 minute film would have been one fact every three seconds. In fact, there were only a few dozen or so “facts” in this environmental diatribe. Thirty five of the “facts” were found to be either frankly erroneous or suspect. The judge actually ruled on nine points. Oops, the movie’s “facts” were judged to be “nonfactual.” When the trial concluded even the UK Government, to which Mr. Gore is a climate-change advisor, had to admit it did not represent mainstream scientific opinion. How then can the United Nations state that global warming is “settled science?” I could stop right here. Not many disputes of this nature have been settled by the High Court of London (don’t you just love that name).
The next fact that is undisputable is the paltry percentage of our atmosphere composed of carbon dioxide. However, the data below are computed for the “dry atmosphere” and do not include water vapor. Water vapor varies depending on where in the earth’s atmosphere that one measures it. It is highest at the equator and lowest at the poles. The range is from 0% at the poles to 4% at the equator. The importance of water vapor will become clearer later. Please note that CO2 is only 0.0383% of the Earth’s atmosphere.
Gases in atmosphere
- Nitrogen (N2) 78.084%
- Oxygen (O2) 20.946%
- Argon (Ar) 0.934%
- Carbon dioxide (CO2) 0.0383 %
- Neon (Ne) 0.001818 %
- Helium (He) 0.000524 %
- Methane (CH4) 0.0001745 %
- Krypton (Kr) 0.000114%
- Hydrogen (H2) 0.000055 %
- Nitrous Oxide (N2O) 0.00003%
- Ozone (O3) 0.000004%
The next fact is that the furor over global warming is not based on the percentage of CO2 in the atmosphere but on the increase in CO2 caused by man. CO2 has been in our atmosphere since the beginning of the Earth, long before the first SUV. It has many sources other than man. Even the anti-CO2 lobby only claims that “the volume of this gas has increased by 35% in the last three hundred years. This increase (they contend) is primarily due to human induced burning from fossil fuels, deforestation, and other forms of land-use change.” That is to say that 0.0134% of the Earth’s atmosphere has been influenced by man-made changes over a 300-year period. I’m sorry, is that a “big” number? It sounds kind of small, and the time frame sounds kind of long.
But, say you, we are interested in GREENHOUSE GASES, not the component gases in the atmosphere. Good point. Let’s consider the greenhouse gases. Greenhouse gases are gases in an atmosphere that absorb and emit radiation within the thermal infrared range. This process is the fundamental cause of the greenhouse effect. The main greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere are water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone. So the water vapor thing becomes very important here. Let’s take an average, because water vapor varies depending on where it is measured, and call it 2% of the atmosphere. Therefore, greenhouse gases, in their totality, constitute 2.0385085% of the atmosphere. As a greenhouse gas, water vapor is then 98% (2/2.0385085) of our greenhouse gas burden, whereas CO2 is 2/10th of one percent. What we need to do is eradicate water if we want to save the world from global warming (that’s a joke. If all the Earth’s water evaporated we would all be very unhappy and very dead).
But, say the global warming fear mongers, that 2/10th of one percent is really, really, really important! Really? OK. But remember, man only caused 35% of the 2/10th of one percent and only over the past 300 years. That’s 2/1000th of one percent per year. Scary, isn’t it! Other global warming sites look at the past 205 years (from: Environmental Chemistry.com) and compute the increase in CO2 to be 100 parts per million over that time span, or less than 2 PPM per year for the past two centuries.
At this point we need to consider the major producers of CO2. Scientists have suggested that when the earth was new (about 4.5 billion years ago), CO2 may have made up as much as 80% of the earth’s atmosphere (there was no oxygen until photosynthesis began billions of years after our planet formed). About 2 billion years ago, the concentration of CO2 was likely 20 or 30% (these data are, again, from a global “warm-monger” website: Environmental Chemistry.com). Where did all of that CO2 come from if there were no SUVs? Currently, there is controversy about human versus natural production of CO2. Some say volcanoes while others cite humans as the major producers of CO2. But on Venus there are no humans. CO2 is 96.5% of the Venusian atmosphere!
That calculates to 8000 times more CO2 than Earth and not a single human, SUV, or coal-fired electric plant exists there. What does Venus have more of than we do? Venus has more volcanoes than any other planet in our solar system. With over 1600 major volcanoes it is a clear winner, but no one has even tried to count the smaller ones, of which there may be more than one million (NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory). The NASA map below shows there isn’t room for nearly anything else.
So, let us review Part I. Is the science “settled?” Answer, no. Further analyses will soon follow.