CO2 Water Issue

Atmospheric Absorption Bands

Atmospheric Absorption Bands

We’ve, most all of us, seen that chart before. I’d like to add a bit of context to it. Notice that the major CO2 band is already “pegged” at the top. Notice that it overlaps, a lot, with water. Here is the same graph with a rectangular hole laid over that center band. Why? Because it, being already plugged, can’t get more plugged. So any added effect from CO2 must come outside that center.

Atmospheric Absorption Bands CO2 Saturated removed

Atmospheric Absorption Bands CO2 Saturated removed

OK, now notice that on the right side of that “window”, water is already nearly dominant. Not going to pick up much there. In fact, you can look at any of the CO2 “nodes” and they are pretty much already saturated and, other than some broadening, are not going to add any real obstruction. Yet broadening doesn’t add much either. One kind, pressure broadening, happens due to higher air pressure. As that happens at the deep atmosphere, infrared doesn’t get very far anyway. The effect higher in the atmosphere is reduced. The higher you go, the less the effect. So even here we have a bit of a conundrum. As you rise up the air column, to the top of the trophsphere, that CO2 band doesn’t broaden, it narrows..

Next, look at the water band.
Notice how many lobes it has that are shared with nothing else?

The reason high cold deserts and arctic ice fields are cold, and the reason you get frost on cold winter nights, is that the water window opens. Not the CO2 window. Closing the already closed CO2 windows will do nothing, especially when compared to the size of the water windows. The notion that adding CO2 will keep more of the water windows closed more of the time simply ignores what really happens. Precipitation.

Where heat input is large, we get thunderstorms and clouds. Sunlight is kept out, while the vertical water flow pumps heat to the top of the troposhere, and into the bottom of the stratosphere. ( Called “overshoot” and “anvil clouds” or “thunder heads”). More tropical heat just pumps more water around the cycle to precipitate and moves more heat to the bottom of the radiative stratospheric zone. Heck, much of the topics is already at 100% humidity in the summer, it is NOT going to be getting more humid. At the arctic and antarctic zones, it’s frozen. Not going to get more humidity out of frozen air. During the winter, especially, it’s just bone dry and dead cold. No, the only time there’s any hope of “added humidity” is during the end of fall and the start of spring. In the middle band of latitudes, the air masses swing back and forth. Summers are hot and humid in the midwest. Like the Equatorial tropics, not going to be more than 100% and summer rains. In the winter, it’s frozen like the arctic. (Often an arctic ‘air blob’ runs down over the place. These come in many kinds and names. Leroux called some of them Mobile Polar Highs. I use a more generic term for all arctic air masses.) Again, the only ‘opportunity’ for more humidity comes in those shoulder months. In desert areas there just isn’t a lot of humidity anyway. Sometimes it rains, but inside a few days that air is long gone (and any moisture with it).

In short, there just are not a lot of places where a ‘water positive feedback’ can happen. And, in fact, it has not been observed. The lack of ‘feedback’ is yet another embarrassment to the IPCC forecasts / predictions / projections / hand waving / whatever they are calling it these days.

From this chart (which is an average, BTW) it is absolutely clear that water vapor is THE dominant IR radiative / absorptive gas.

Yet my complaints about this graph are not done.

Do you see any allowance for a -20 C polar temperature? For a polar vortex sucking frozen, dry, stratospheric air to ground level? How about for the desert areas that cover the middle parts of the US Southwest, Africa, The Middle East, China? Or in the south the Australian Outback, Namibia, Chile? Do you see any recognition of seasonal change?

This picture gives you an idea just how non-regular the atmospheric water vapor cover can be.

Water Vapor Oct 2011

Water Vapor Oct 2011

From the animation here:

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/GlobalMaps/view.php?d1=MYDAL2_M_SKY_WV

To me, it looks like the polar regions are pretty much dry, the equator / tropics saturated, and only in between do things have gradation. Yet if you ‘watch the movie’, that moves with the seasons. I don’t see the tropics spreading out to cover a wider band (but the animation is short). I think it also shows just how much drying of the air can happen over land in the winter (and why the windshield forms ice).

What is missing is simply a recognition that the graph changes by latitude, season, distance from the oceans, land form, local winds, altitude. It also changes with the weather. We are already in a warm regime. Places that CAN get high humidity already HAVE high humidity. But in a turn to the cold side, what do we find in the historical record? Droughts. LOWER humidity.

That matters.

We have records of killer drought in places like Egypt and Syria / Iraq (Mesopotamia). We have records of a very strong drought cycle in the American West. During the cold ’70s, California had a particularly noticeable drought. I was trying to learn how to ski then, and got to shuffle my skis over hay and straw covering the bare patches at Squaw Valley. A place that had been a host site for the Winter Olympics in the past, known for fairly reliable snow. You can see that on this chart of snow in North America and at a location on the way to Squaw Valley.

During the hotter mid-90s snow pack was up. During the colder mid-70s snow pack was down. (Look at where lines are not on each side, where there’s a bit of weakness or ‘gap’ on one side of the center bar. Notice, too, that we had little snow in the mid 2000s and then slowly rose a bit as this solar cycle peaked.)

Snow North America

Snow North America

As this is just one spot, it’s harder to see trends, but look at the darker blue lines. See that ‘way low’ in 1976 and 1977? That’s when I was learning to ski… Lucky me… You can also see that the ’20s are relatively low and the ’30s relatively high while the mid-90s are also relatively high. (IMHO you can also tease out some ‘transition artifacts’ in that the times of shifting from warm to cold – or from cold to warm – often look to have a high snow spike, until things readjust. Yes, all of it would be better handled with some math and smoothing, but ‘by eye’ is what I have right now.)

Snowfall Chart 2011 Sierra Nevada Donner Summit

Snowfall Chart 2011 Sierra Nevada Donner Summit

The Point

So what’s my point about all this? Pretty simple. Water vapor is already high. During the Holocene, we pretty much limit on high water vapor. More water in the air just comes down as more rain and snow. To the cold side we have plenty of room to lose water vapor. As the sun has gone quiet, the polar regions have gone back to damn cold. That means damn dry, too. In the midwest of North America, we had a drought. That’s dry. That’s lower water vapor. As we go colder and dryer, even just in regions like the Arctic or Canada or the UK and Scandinavia, we lose water vapor from the air.

Those closed radiation windows open.

While we can’t close the already closed CO2 window very much more (more like putting a bit of caulking on a double pane window), we can easily swing wide those water windows. It happens every winter in cold places. We get “hard frosts” and ice on the windshield of the car. It happens every night in the desert, when the place cools dramatically after sundown.

CO2 is powerless to prevent frost and cold desert nights because it doesn’t cover those windows. It is no protection against downside cold. It can not keep away the next ice age glacial. It can’t even keep winter frost off the windshield.

Now look again at this close up of what added CO2 is expected to do. Note the Watts listed for that change. Then look back up at those ‘water windows’. I think they are a whole lot more Watts…

Modtran Radiative Forcing on CO2 Double

Modtran Radiative Forcing on CO2 Double

I would very much like to see that same graph, but for above 80 degrees N and S (polar) in winter, and for over both the desert, and the US West during a drought (vs normal rains).

Without that direct comparison, this must remain just a speculation; but it is a well guided one, IMHO.

In any case, what we have here in this transmissivity graph is another example of an over averaged set of data used in a static scored model of how the world works. I think that looking specifically for those two “reasoning faults” in what is presented by the { Global Warming / Climate Change / Climate Chaos / Weather Weirding / Whatever-the-nom-du-jour is these days } folks stuff will be highly productive.

If they can’t even visualize water vapor right, there’s no hope for any of the rest of it being right.

I wonder if there are any long duration global water vapor data sets…

As a ‘dig here’, it will be interesting to see if during any known historical very cold periods, there were also records of drought over some large areas. Basically, when Europe was having cold rains at the onset of the Little Ice Age, was North America having a drought? How about Africa? Asia? Separating the local effects from the “global trends”, if you will. Did the LIA start off with a wet / snow event, then end up more dry later? What are the temporal and spacial patterns of drought in a Little Ice Age? If anyone wants to ‘run ahead’ and let us all know… ;-)

In any case, I’ve reached the conclusion that while looking at temperature records is interesting, looking at precipitation and humidity trends is important too.

Finally, the air is dryer the higher up you go. I can only wonder to what extent the ‘solar funk’ and the shortening of the atmospheric column with it, has put more mountain tops and high plains effectively ‘closer to space’ and in a lower humidity regime. To what extent does UV mediated changes of air column height, modulate global high spot humidity. If it’s more than 3/1400 or so, then it is a candidate for overwhelming CO2.

We live on a ‘water world’, and that one fact matters more than anything else.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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20 Responses to CO2 Water Issue

  1. crosspatch says:

    As we go into an ice age, the oceans get deposited on the land as snow/ice. One thing that I think people are missing is that storm intensity depends on convection. Convection depends on temperature DIFFERENCE. So if the middle tropical troposphere had a “hot spot” we would see a shutting down of convection and a great reduction in tropical storm energy. But more importantly the oceans lag atmosphere. So when we start to cool down, we should see MORE storms of stronger intensity because the oceans are still warm but the atmosphere is cold. This should result in more active convection. As we go down into a glacial period, we should see massive storms. We should see great fronts of cold polar air moving across still relatively warm oceans. Only once the ocean reaches some lower temperature would we see that cease. Maybe That is the reason for the interstadials. Maybe the ocean gets so cold that we see such a reduction in convection that the reduced cloud cover causes an increase in energy absorption for a while until the ocean heats up enough to begin to cause the cycle to repeat again. Maybe it is two things beating against each other … solar cycles vs. ocean warming and cooling.

  2. R. de Haan says:

    AGW is dead and the Green Machine is coming off the rails. Net technology is going to turn the USA in the No1 energy producer world wide.Octopus, multi-well pad is the new technology that is going to make your dreams come true.

    http://www.energyandcapital.com/articles/multi-well-pad/2892?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+eacfeed+(Energy+and+Capital)

  3. Petrossa says:

    It is just one of those doom scenarios humankind seems so fond off. From eons ago people projected their existential fears on various disasters. After this one runs its course there will be another to take its place, provided ofcourse we all are there after 21-12-2012. :-)
    Did you know that in france there is a tiny village of 600 that the believers claim the spaceship will land to take away those lucky ones and that big parcels of wasteland have been sold by farmers to nutjobs for astronomical prices? Even the few rooms/cupboards/stables there are rented out for the night of up to 15000 Euros.
    Human folly. We’ll just have to learn to live with it.

  4. Steve C says:

    I very much agree: water is ‘The Man’ when it comes to modulating the flow of thermal energy near the surface of the planet. As I have a modest but serviceable infrared thermometer, I can offer a few illustrative readings I have taken myself: NB, I’m not going to quote error margins, since I haven’t had the opportunity to calibrate the thermometer, and in anycase the lowest temperature I quote is somewhat below the thermometer’s lower specified limit – kudos to the (Chinese) manufacturer for giving me a reading at all, rather than an unhelpful “Out Of Range Error” message.

    I have records of two nicely contrasting British (city) evenings, both taken from my flat window “around teatime” (i.e. about 6pm): one was a pleasantly warm summer afternoon, the other a week or so ago when it was distinctly cooler. I’ll give you the temperature readings, then the approximate calculated W/m².

    – Summer evening: clear sky, air temp approx. 23°C, RH < 20%: temp reading from ground approx. 17°C; temp reading from sky approx. -58°C.
    – Winter evening: overcast, air temp approx. 7°C, RH approx. 67%: temp reading from ground approx. -1.5°C; temp reading from sky approx. -0.5°C.

    Making the lazy assumption that everything involved is a black body, then from SB this amounts (again, approximately) to 'Prevostian' radiation of the following intensity:
    Summer: ground 400 W/m², sky 120 W/m², net 280 W/m² upwards
    Winter: ground 308 W/m², sky 313 W/m², net 5W/m² downwards.

    So, on a warm, non-humid summer's evening, the generously supplied thermal energy has an easy escape through the open Water Window to space; on a cold, humid winter's evening the rather lower amount of energy meets the closed Water Window. (Whether the winter readings actually indicate "downwelling IR heating the surface" is moot, given the accuracy of the instrument. The important thing is that there clearly isn’t an open window for energy leaving the surface.) The ‘all-powerful’ CO2 seems to have minimal influence (to put it kindly) in comparison with the freely varying H2O vapour.

  5. DirkH says:

    Imagine you build a really big balloon out of an IR-transparent plastic and fill it with one atmosphere pressure of non-greenhouse gases, say O2 and N2. Now you anchor it near the surface where the mean free path length of an IR photon is shortest, at about 33 m. The balloon contains no water vapor as well.

    This should lead to a measurable increase in nighttime radiative cooling.

    One could rent out these balloons to cities that are plagued by the fear of global warming, like Hamburg or NYC with their crazy populations. Method and apparatus to reverse global warming and its ill effects I’d call it.

  6. jim2 says:

    The problem is that the people in power in the US ignore “natural” laws. Economic laws and the laws of science. The ignore the laws of our founders embodied in the Constitution. They do seem to understand sociology and psychology – they understand that giving away free stuff is a way to get elected. They understand that they like power. All of that means that they will ignore science they don’t like and embrace science, even bogus non-science, that plays into their hand. The people in power are the problem, not science per se.

  7. DirkH says:

    Jim, google Edward Bernays, and watch this:

  8. adrianvance says:

    The situation is more bizarre than you reveal. Where the energy carried by waves varies as E = (h X c)/w where h = Plancks Constant, c = speed of light and w = wavelength a one micron wave carries 32 times the energy of a 16 micron quantum. Where there are 80 times as many water molecules in air, generally, as CO2’s and it garners seven times as much energy from sunlight as CO2 the net result is that water vapor absorbs 560 times as much energy from sunlight as does CO2 or 99.8% of it. CO2 only captures 0.2% of all energy involved in “global warming.” This is a fraud for money and power as carbon combustion generates 80% of all our energy. The control and taxing of carbon fuels would give the elected ruling class more money and power than anything they have pulled off since the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215 AD.

    We have much more material on this subject at http://globalwarmingnotes.blogspot.com See the “White Paper” for a fully illuminated explanation of the above.

  9. Petrossa,
    Amazing how much effort Monckton puts into his critiques. Darn shame that nobody at the IPCC seems to care about restoring credibility.

  10. Jason Calley says:

    @ DirkH ” google Edward Bernays”

    A few years back I read Bernays’ book “Propaganda”. The main thing that struck me was that (assuming he was being honest in what he wrote(a BIG assumption!)) he and the class whom he was addressing seem to sincerely believe that the world would be better if the masses are led like cattle. They see themselves not as people who are taking away freedom from the individual and manipulating the masses, but rather as a select group who are bringing order and efficiency to the world.

    I am reminded of that famous quote from C.S. Lewis:
    “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.”

  11. Jason Calley says:

    @ E.M. “We live on a ‘water world’, and that one fact matters more than anything else.”

    As so often happens, E.M., you make the most wonderful and clear explanations.

    I think you are correct. Water is the difference, the elephant in the room of CAGW. One of the things I have tried to point out to CAGW friends is that the overlap between spectra of H2O and CO2 is important! I usually try this approach:

    “OK, we agree that the effects of CO2 are logarithmic, correct?”
    “Yes.”
    “OK, suppose, just as a thought experiment, that there were some other molecule — let’s call it “eka-CO2″ or eCO2, that had exactly the same spectra as CO2. No difference at all. Do we agree that when computing the effects of CO2 you would have to calculate based on changes in the total amount not just of CO2, but of eCO2 plus CO2?”
    “Yes.”
    “OK, here is what it looks like to me; there is no such thing as true eCO2, but there is H2O and there is a large overlap between its spectrum and CO2’s spectrum. To the extent that H2O and CO2 overlap, you can only calculate radiative changes from increased CO2 by looking at the sum of H2O and CO2, not just looking at the CO2 change. The fact is, there is a LOT of H20 in the atmosphere. Many times more H20 than CO2, so much H2O that even doubling the CO2 does almost nothing. In addition there is massive amounts of heat being moved into the upper atmosphere by convection and by H2O undergoing phase changes. The effect of new CO2 is completely overwhelmed.”

    Sadly, the most common response at this point in the conversation is “Well, you must be wrong about all that, or the Climate Scientists would have already pointed it out! They can’t all be wrong.”

    For what it is worth, most of that little conversation is composed of bits and pieces I learned from you, here at Chiefio’s. If I had to make a bet, my money is on you, not the gravy-train, so-called “scientists.” They are not scientists, they are sophists, and dishonest ones at that.

  12. E.M.Smith says:

    @Crosspatch:

    Good points. FWIW I think there are two under appreciated processes in the ‘ocean storage’ of heat. The Drake Passage effect when tides and currents change and UV / Blue variations on solar changes changing depth at which heat is captured.

    @R.de Haan:

    Hadn’t heard of that one. Nice. Going to make a lot of oil and gas…

    @Petrossa:

    Always been that way, but no, I’d not heard about the folks in France. See:

    http://www.ohiohistorycentral.org/entry.php?rec=607

    for a discussion of Millerites… and earlier form of the same thing…

    @Steve C:

    Prevostian? That’s a new one on me ;-) (I like new…)

    I need to get one of those IR temp meters. I’d like to do a series from various deserts and mountain tops ;-)

    It’s just that kind of A/B comparison that I think pretty much proves “It’s the water” and not a lot more… ;-)

    (For those who didn’t ‘get that’ as it’s a local cultural thing: in the ’70s there was a ‘local’ beer called “Oly” or “Olympia”. Their VERY persistent advertising slogan was “It’s the Water, and a lot more!”… )

    @Dirk H:

    Cute ;-) You could put a load of them at altitude too and ‘rent’ them to whatever nation they were floating over at the time…

    @Jim2:

    This, IMHO, is largely a result of the culture of The Elite. It stresses that you don’t need to know things to be in charge. You can hire people who know things. The classical “It’s not what you know but who you know.” Now season with “The Power Of Positive Thinking” and that you are never to say negative things to folks and stir. That institutionalizes a fantasy world where folks only know that they need to be in agreement with the right folks (who also don’t know anything) and that nobody can say “you are wrong”.

    The real evil comes in when the upward mobility that used to seed that population with enough folks who came “from roots” and had clue dries up. Now you’ve got a rarefied atmosphere of non-think. But it gets worse…

    When you send your non-think kid off to collect a set of “the right friends”, you send them to a Name School and into “the right major”. Which is NOT Chemical Engineering…. (That is for the token ‘lower class’ kids that go to your school to keep the name plate value up…) No, it’s The Arts and the Social Sciences. Realize that an essential conclusion of that “I have people” cultural motif is that what “my people” do is beneath your stratum. Also that “knowing people” means things like Sociology and Psychology and even Literature (for the cocktail parties) are “preferred”. Now what gets stuffed into their heads there? Nothing to do with how technology or the economy really works. Certainly not how business works.

    No, it’s all about “Self Actualization” and “Moral Relativism” (all seasoned with a large dose of sub rosa socialism, or in the Sociology classes direct indoctrination).

    So these folks come back to their leadership Entitlements wanting to be all “Self Actualized” and looking to “Change the World” and start monkeying with the machinery about which they do not have a clue… But no one, and I do mean No ONE!! will tell them they are going to screw up or are dumb. Worse, I’d wager not a one of them raised in their protected environments has ever been spanked nor watched a friend take a header off the rope swing and miss the river… They have ZERO reality experience of the School Of Hard Knocks.

    So we get to suffer from their screw up “hard knocks”, yet, due to Positive Thinking and “Never say a negative thing”, they often won’t even notice they screwed it up. They’ve “moved on” feeling all good and self actualized and smug and all. So Obama and friends will NEVER experience all the hardships that Obamacare will cause. They’ve had their success smugging and have “moved on” to the next non-broken thing they will “fix”… Getting positive feedback all the way from their hoard of sycophants and “their people”. ( Who also know it’ snot what you know but who you know, and how to keep them happy…)

    No, not 100% of them. I’ve met a few with clue. Steve Forbes, for one. He’s “good folks” and his Dad put him in the world with real folks to get some experience (even if he’d rather sit in the truck ;-)

    But enough.

    How do I know? Well, aside from just keeping my eyes open and watching foibles like Daddy Bush not knowing what a grocery scanner was and Senator Tunney not having a clue that hot air made a hot air balloon go up… I hung out at places like Stanford sometimes. The “Coffee House” was (is?) a fun place to hang out and “see and be seen”. Pretty fast you can catch on to who’s the Scholarship Kid with brains and who’s there to meet the right people and Daddy Dearest bought them a degree with a donation… (One guy was a son of an ambassador from some African country. Not very bright but working on a Social Sciences degree, I think in African Studies or something like that, and expecting to be important in government since his Dad new the right people. IIRC Dad had made a “donation” of some sort that helped get him in – along with being a tick mark on their “diversity” spreadsheet. Another was a very cute girl husband shopping, in on an alumni allowance of some sort.)

    Also, on one occasion, I was waiting in line for some tickets. Two guys in front of me (older folks) doing The Schmooze… I joined for a bit. Then, as an experiment in social dynamics, inserted a very mild, minor “negative thought”. It was interesting. MUCH more sensitive to Negative Waves (Moriarty ;-) and directly, but smoothly, shifted to a different more happy talk direction. ( They were talking about buying a boat / yacht or some such and I mentioned some of the risks of a boat… having lived aboard one…)

    (For folks not a fan of hinky movies, the “Negative Waves, Moriarty” is from Kelly’s Heros…)

    At any rate, there’s a social feedback loop to ever less technical competence and ever less “reality feedback” in the upper strata.

    So we get folks like Ms. “Have to pass it to see what’s in it” Pelosi. If anyone tried to tell her she was a bit daft, that’s be vilified and ejected by her “Flappers” in no time. Besides, she’s feeling all Self Actualized and full of Positive Thinking and knows all the right people so clearly she’s more competent than you are… She keeps getting re-elected after all, and even can get crazy bills like Obamacare passed… and that MUST take skill…

    Don’t expect any of her kids to be taking Engineering classes or mix with the rabble.

    Our system was supposed to prevent that kind of domination of Congress by the Elite, but now the cost of elections and the power of mass media pretty much assure it…

    So, I think you have an error. They don’t “ignore” natural laws. They don’t even know they exist … as “You can’t do that, it’s a natural law” would be ‘negative thinking’… so odds are they’ve never even heard of such a thing…

  13. E.M.Smith says:

    @Jason Calley:

    Watch Chomsky on “Manufacturing Consent”. That’s what folks get indoctrinated with in Social Science class. ( I made the mistake of taking some when at university…)

    They are TOLD by AUTHORITY that it’s good and important and in fact NECESSARY for them to ‘manufacture consent’ and tell the people what to think…

    I think this is it: http://youtu.be/PQhEBCWMe44

    Oh, and thanks! It’s one of my few true advantages. I just keep distilling and compressing and polishing until a thought is ‘tidy’, then store it… Just part of ‘keeping a tidy mind’… and an urge to “speak plainly”. Only use complexity and jargon when there is no alternative.

    FWIW, given that It’s The Law that they must study “Global Warming”, most of the govt scientists and folks getting grants from such agencies have no choice, really, but to find it…

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2012/12/16/no-place-for-skeptics-at-the-govt-table/

    So how can you possible say “It’s the water!” when The Law says that’s not a study of Global Warming?…

  14. Peter Offenhartz says:

    I really like this post! The MODTRAN diagram shows a delta F of only 3.4 watts/m2 for CO2 = 600 ppm, and this is probably for a mid-latitude or equitorial clear sky, which is to say a region in space-time that is rather rare. You can run your own tests with MODTRAN at

    http://forecast.uchicago.edu/Projects/modtran.doc.html

    What I don’t like is the assumption that CO2 CAN’T matter. Heat transfer is a parallel process. If you leave a window open and then super-insulate your house, you will reduce your heat loss, even though the window remains open. Heat transfer occurs along parallel paths. The importance of one path does not mean other paths don’t exist.

    The reference that the Chiefio gave in his “Tropopause Rules” blog: http://www.atmosphere.mpg.de/enid/20c.html
    is worth studying. Note that the altitude where CO2 emissions to space are strongest is about 50 km above sea level, i.e., up in the middle of the stratosphere, where the temperature is increasing with increasing altitude. What this means for radiative heat transfer through the CO2 absorption band is worth thinking about!

  15. Steve C says:

    @EM – Yes, a few ballpark readings from more “extreme” locations would be interesting, especially given the surprisingly wide variation I found within a city. Judging from my own experience, though, you’d need to look for one calibrated a long way down – they usually put the emphasis on high temps for people running kilns, etc.

    They’re fun for messing around, too. Most people check the temperature of their bathwater with an elbow or a finger … :-D

    @ all references to Bernays and the “Elite” (what’s the opposite of “elite”?) – As my Youtube “reception” is erratic at best, I’ll assume that that first link mentioning Bernays was tp Adam Curtis’ “The Century of the Self”. (If I’m wrong, add that to the list of stuff to watch.) I can also highly recommend Curtis’ later series, “The Trap – What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom?” and “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace” (both 3 x 1 hour), which paint in more of the same picture. If anyone knows of any more of his stuff, series names please!

  16. Pouncer says:

    Steve asks: ‘what’s the opposite of “elite”?’ and I suspect “prole” is the preferred term.

    I wonder — does the water vapor emitted by the same electrical power system and automobile systems in cold regions have more effect on climate than the same emitters’ CO2. and how would one go about measuring it?

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