Japanese Scientist Reiterates That CO2 Climate Sensitivity Is Overstated, “Theoretically Meaningless”

Japanese scientist Kyoji Kimoto reiterates his belief that CO2 climate forcing has been grandly overstated. See original story here.  Kyoji has sent the following essay to publish here at NTZ.

Collapse of the IPCC AGW theory

by Kyoji Kimoto

Dr. Syukuro Manabe was given many prizes for the discovery of greenhouse effect with Fig. 16 in Manabe & Wetherald (1967) utilizing one dimensional radiative convective equilibrium model (1DRCM) with the fixed lapse rate assumption of 6.5°K/km for the atmospheric CO2 of 300 ppm (1xCO2) and that of 600 ppm (2xCO2).

It gave the zero feedback climate sensitivity CS (FAH) of 1.3°K under the fixed absolute humidity for 1xCO2 and 2xCO2, which was the starting point of the modern anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory. The Manabe method was followed by Hansen et al. (1981) and Schlesinger (1986) to obtain the similar results that the CS (FAH) is 1.2-1.3°K with the radiative forcing of 4W/m2 for 2xCO2.


Fig. 16 in Manabe & Wetherald (1967)

The lapse rate of 6.5°K/km is defined for 1xCO2 in the U.S. Standard Atmosphere (1962).There is no guarantee, however, that the same lapse rate will be maintained in the perturbed atmosphere with 2xCO2 because it depends on radiation, convection, large scale dynamics and moisture etc. Therefore, the lapse rate for 2xCO2 is a parameter for which a sensitivity analysis is needed.

From Fig.4 in Manabe & Strickler (1964), below, we can calculate the sensitivity of the surface temperature (Ts) with the variation of lapse rate (LR) in 1DRCM as follows:

Radiative equilibrium     LR=17°K/km   Ts =332°K

Thermal equilibrium      LR=10°K/km    Ts=311°K

Thermal equilibrium      LR=6.5°K/km    Ts=300°K

Sensitivity: dTs/dLR = 3°K/1(K/km) = 0.3°K/0.1(K/km)


Fig. 4 in Manabe & Strickler (1964)


As shown above, the CS (FAH) greatly changes with a minute change of the lapse rate for 2xCO2, while it varies from 4°K/km to 10°K/km generally. Therefore, the CS (FAH) of 1.2-1.3°K is theoretically meaningless in Manabe & Wetherald (1967), Hansen et al. (1981) and Schlesinger (1986), furnishing a theoretical basis to the 14 GCMs studies for the IPCC AR4 in Soden & Held (2006).

Thus, the AGW theory of the IPCC is collapsed due to the lack of parameter sensitivity analysis of the lapse rate for 2xCO2 in the 1DRCM studies with the fixed lase rate assumption of 6.5°K/km for 1xCO2 and 2xCO2.

It is a standard procedure to check the validity of obtained results in scientific studies.


  • Hansen, J., Johnson, D., Lacis, A., Lebedeff, S., Lee, P., Rind, D. and Russell, G., Climate impact of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide, Science 1981, 213, 957-966.
  • Manabe, S. and Strickler, R.F., Thermal equilibrium of the atmosphere with a convective adjustment, J. Atmospheric Sciences, 1964, 21, 361-385.
  • Manabe, S. and Wetherald, R.T., Thermal equilibrium of the atmosphere with a given distribution of relative humidity, J. Atmospheric Sciences, 1967, 24, 241-259.
  • Schlesinger, M.E., Equilibrium and transient climatic warming induced by increased atmospheric CO2, Climate Dynamics, 1986, 1, 35-51.
  • Soden, B.J. and Held, I.M., An assessment of climate feedbacks in coupled ocean-atmosphere models.  J. Climate, 2006, 19, 3354-3360.


21 responses to “Japanese Scientist Reiterates That CO2 Climate Sensitivity Is Overstated, “Theoretically Meaningless””

  1. Kenneth Richard

    Willett, 1974

    W.J. Humphreys, (1940, pp. 585-6), and outstanding meteorological physicist, after careful consideration of CO2 absorption and the water vapor absorption spectrum, concludes that “either doubling or halving the present amount of carbon dioxide could alter but little the total amount of radiation actually absorbed by the atmosphere, and, therefore, seemingly, could not appreciably change the average temperature of the earth, or be at all effective in the production of marked climatic changes.”

    In view of the mere 7% observed increase of CO2, of the conclusion of Humphreys quoted above and of the work of the numerous authorities quoted by him, the author is convinced that recent increases of atmospheric carbon dioxide have contributed much less than 5% of the recent changes of atmospheric temperature, and will contribute no more than that in the foreseeable future. Furthermore, the carbon dioxide hypothesis for the upward trend of northern hemispheric temperature from 1920-50 does not at all account for the fact that this trend terminated in higher middle latitudes before it even started in subtropical latitudes, where it peaked long after it terminated in high latitudes.

  2. Jamie

    It is amazing how warmists want rewards and accolades for their shaky hypothesis regarding CO2, when in fact their studies fail by even the standards of basic statistical methodology. I think it is their lack of understanding of statistics and regression analysis that drives them to mistakenly believe their simplistic predictive models are ‘settled science’, in the same way old testament prophets believed their predictions were ‘settled mysticism’.

    If you can’t predict the sensitivity of a variable, such as carbon content, the variable is not even ready to be used for predictive analysis, let along ready for the honorific oxymoron of ‘settled science’.

  3. Harry Dale Huffman

    All scientists should know by now that my 2010 Venus/Earth temperatures comparison already definitively showed there is no “CO2 global warming greenhouse effect”.

    Never mind doubling the CO2. The Venus atmosphere has over 2400 times the concentration of CO2 as does Earth’s (that is 11.4 doublings of CO2, not just one doubling), without ANY effect upon the temperature at any given pressure level.

    Further, since that Venus/Earth comparison precisely confirms the Standard Atmosphere model for Earth’s troposphere as the true, stable equilibrium state of the atmosphere, it also confirms the physics behind that model, which is just that of the hydrostatic condition, that the pressure at any level in the troposphere is just the weight of the atmosphere above that level. And since the hydrostatic condition provides that the lapse rate MUST BE just -g/c, where g is the acceleration due to gravity and c is the effective specific heat of the atmosphere, the lapse rate has ESSENTIALLY NOTHING to do with the CO2 level in the atmosphere (certainly not in the trace amounts found in Earth’s atmosphere, and even between Earth’s .04% and Venus’s 96.5%, as the Venus/Earth comparison I performed showed).

    I have yet to come across ANY “expert”, like the above author, who knows what they are talking about; The Venus/Earth temperature comparison makes them all appear incompetent.

    1. AndyG55

      Thanks Harry .. Your TRUTH will get through eventually.

    2. Peter Švančárek

      And that is not only concentration difference what is important. There is that whole 100x higher pressure on Venus. And double solar input makes thinks interesting too.

  4. Russell Johnson

    “Thus, the AGW theory of the IPCC is collapsed…” Great words and a great essay! Climate science could not be more unsettled because of this analysis. If only the world’s corrupt leaders would realize they are imposing a false religion instead of a scientific solution.

    It’s past time to expose the supporters of CAWG, AWG and Climate Change (as defined by UN) for what they are…..fascist oppressors!!

  5. Stephen Wilde

    Radiative gases must alter the lapse rate and do so differently in ascending and descending columns for a zero net effect as explained here:


    Fig 3 is especially relevant.

  6. Dan Pangburn

    The Andean/Saharan ice age, which occurred at about 10 times the current CO2 level, ruled out atmospheric CO2 as a significant factor in climate change. Emergent structures analysis http://globalclimatedrivers.blogspot.com demonstrates that climate change since before 1900 can be explained (97% match with measurements) by an approximation of ocean cycles combined with the influence quantified by a proxy which is the time-integral of sunspot numbers. If average global temperature does not significantly decline before 2011 an as yet unidentified factor is preventing it.

    1. Dan Pangburn

      Make that 2020 not 2011.

      1. AndyG55

        I wondered what you meant. 😉

  7. gallopingcamel

    The M&W 1967 model has been improved by Robinson & Catling. The concentration of CO2 has a significant effect on temperatures in the stratosphere where the absorption of long wavelength radiation is proportional to pressure.

    In planetary tropospheres absorption is roughly proportional to pressure squared, which means that the lower atmosphere is essentially opaque at 15 microns so the radiative-convective model degenerates to a gradient of -g/Cp in accordance with thermo-dynamics.

    The R&C model works for all seven bodies in our solar system that have significant atmospheres so I would call it “Robust”.

  8. gallopingcamel

    @Stephen Wilde,
    The R&C model shows that CO2 has little effect on the temperature gradient in the lower atmosphere because the gas does not have time to re-radiate photons absorbed before transferring the excess energy to other gas molecules via collisions. Thus radiation, convection and conduction all have the same effect. They ensure that energy is retained rather than being lost into space.

    In the stratosphere radiation dominates because CO2 is more likely to lose energy by radiation than via collisions.

    We have had this discussion before. If you still don’t believe me please review the equations that are in the appendix of the Robinson & Catling letter linked in my previous comment.

  9. gallopingcamel

    Harry Dale Huffman,
    ” the lapse rate has ESSENTIALLY NOTHING to do with the CO2 level in the atmosphere….”

    You have been saying that for many years and you are right, especially with regard to Venus where the atmosphere is primarily CO2 and Nitrogen. Given that these two gases have similar Cp (Specific Heat at Constant Pressure) it makes little difference which gas predominates as noted by Sagan in 1968 before the atmospheric composition of Venus was known:

    Nevertheless the charlatan, James Hansen, continues to publish BS that attempts to explain the last seven glacial cycles in terms of CO2:

    Figure 7 is a breathtaking piece of nonsense.

  10. gallopingcamel

    Harry Dale Huffman,
    In your excellent (2010) paper you said:
    “So there is no greenhouse effect.”

    I can’t agree with you on this one. There is a greenhouse effect but it is not 288 – 255 = 33 Kelvin.

    OK, you say that Earth’s average temperature is 287.4 K and I rounded up to 288 K rather than down to 287K.

    However, Earth’s temperature “Sans Atmosphere” should be around 209 K, so the GHE is roughly 79 Kelvin:

    My analysis was debated “Off Line” with several noted “Climate Scientists” for over a year. I won’t name them as our discussions were in confidence but we ended up in close agreement.

    1. DirkH

      By comparing Earth with “Earth without atmosphere” – and calling the difference caused by the Greenhouse effect – you are implying : The effect of an atmosphere is what we define as the Greenhouse effect.

      I find that all pointless. Without even going into changes in albedo due to either – no water cycle – or – a rather different water cycle (does water vapor count as an atmosphere? Can your “Earth without atmosphere” have water at all? and so on, and so on)

      1. gallopingcamel

        What we call the GHE “Greenhouse Effect” has nothing to do with greenhouses that prevent heat leaving by creating a glass or plastic boundary that reduces heat lost by convection.

        I say that the GHE is the warming that can be attributed to a body’s atmosphere. If you don’t like that tell me your definition.

        Consensus “Climate Scientists” tell us that the GHE is 33 Kelvin but they can’t explain this in terms of CO2, let alone the more realistic GHE of 79 Kelvin.

        With regard to bodyies with surface water we have some in the solar system. For example Enceladus a moon of Saturn:

        “Sans Atmosphere” our planet would probably look like Enceladus except that local melting could occur near the equator owing to the TSI of >1,300 W/m^2.

        I used the Enceladus Albedo to calculate the red curve in Figure 1. here:

        Nevertheless global average temperatures correlate with astonishing accuracy with [CO2]. This is easy to explain in terms of Henry’s Law:

    2. AndyG55

      What is referred to as “the greenhouse effect” is very much a misnomer.

      Its an “atmospheric mass” effect.

      Greenhouses have NOTHING to do with it..

      There’s nothing up there blocking convection.

      1. gallopingcamel

        I agree that pressure is more important than gas composition (hat tip to Nikolov & Zeller). For example the surface temperature of Venus would change by less than 20 Kelvin if the CO2 in its atmosphere was magically replaced with nitrogen.

  11. Bob Armstrong

    Something is seriously wrong with the graphs of temperature versus altitude . They must converge to the ~ 278.5 gray ball temperature in our orbit ( corresponding to a TSI of ~ 1361. ) as one leaves the top of the atmosphere . The first graph in particular show estimates diverging . It’s clearly wrong because it fails to understand this non-optional constraint .

    1. gallopingcamel

      You can make a pretty good estimate of planetary surface temperature by determining the temperature at the TOA (Top of the Atmosphere) and then applying the adiabatic lapse rate of -g/Cp down to the surface.

      This approach works with amazing precision for Venus, Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune. It also works for Earth and Titan if you reduce the lapse rate by a constant (R&C’s “Alpha”) to compensate for the effect of oceans. On Earth the ocean consist of water while on Titan the liquid is methane.

  12. Bob Armstrong

    Something is seriously wrong with the graphs of temperature versus altitude . They must converge to the ~ 278.5 gray ball temperature in our orbit ( corresponding to a TSI of ~ 1361. ) as one leaves the top of the atmosphere . The first graph in particular show estimates diverging . It’s clearly wrong because it fails to understand this non-optional constraint .

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