What If Human Emissions
Aren’t All That Influential?
We have been led to believe that we can control the size of the ozone hole and both methane and CO2 concentrations with our emissions.
We have also been led to believe we control weather patterns (storminess, droughts, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes); we control tropospheric, atmospheric, surface, and deep ocean temperatures; we control glacier retreat and advance; we control relative sea level; we control whether or not over million species go extinct by 2050 . . . all by emitting more or less gaseous substances in our pursuit of energy and comfort.
What if we are overestimating our impact on the planet? What if our gaseous emissions don’t really have anywhere near the impact we think they do?
What if we are too arrogant to even consider the possibility that the Earth cannot be “saved” by building more wind turbines and solar panels and recycling more plastic?
“We’re so self-important. Everybody’s going to save something now. ‘Save the trees, save the bees, save the whales, save those snails.’ And the greatest arrogance of all: save the planet. Save the planet – we don’t even know how to take care of ourselves yet.”
“The planet has been through a lot worse than us. Been through earthquakes, volcanoes, plate tectonics, continental drift, solar flares, sun spots, magnetic storms, the magnetic reversal of the poles … hundreds of thousands of years of bombardment by comets and asteroids and meteors, worldwide floods, tidal waves, worldwide fires, erosion, cosmic rays, recurring ice ages … And we think some plastic bags and some aluminum cans are going to make a difference? The planet isn’t going anywhere. WE are!” — George Carlin
NASA: Montreal Protocol Not Responsible For Ozone Changes – Natural Meteorology Is
NASA Reveals New Results From Inside the Ozone Hole
“NASA scientists have revealed the inner workings of the ozone hole that forms annually over Antarctica and found that declining chlorine in the stratosphere [from reduced human emissions] has not yet caused a recovery of the ozone hole. …. [T]wo new studies show that signs of recovery are not yet present, and that temperature and winds are still driving any annual changes in ozone hole size. … The classic metrics create the impression that the ozone hole has improved as a result of the Montreal protocol. In reality, meteorology was responsible for the increased ozone and resulting smaller hole, as ozone-depleting substances that year were still elevated. The study has been submitted to the journal of Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics.
“‘Ozone holes with smaller areas and a larger total amount of ozone are not necessarily evidence of recovery attributable to the expected chlorine decline,’ said Susan Strahan of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.”
Most Of The Measured Change In Ozone Is Natural, Not Anthropogenic
Hess et al., 2015
“[A] large portion of the measured change [in ozone] is not due to changes in [anthropogenic] emissions, but can be traced to changes in large-scale modes of ozone variability. This emphasizes the difficulty in the attribution of ozone changes, and the importance of natural variability in understanding the trends and variability of ozone.
Introduction: “Lin et al. (2014) attribute decadal changes in the interannual Mauna Loa ozone record to shifts in circulation patterns. However, at other locations, ozone exhibits considerable interannual variability on decadal timescales that has not been adequately explained (e.g., Koumoutsaris et al., 2008). In many cases, this ozone variability is not easily ascribed to changes in emissions. For example, changes in emissions do not explain the baseline ozone trends at Mace Head, Ireland (e.g., Hess and Zbinden, 2013; Fiore et al., 2009), measured as strongly positive during the most of the 1990s but since leveling off (Carslaw, 2005; Derwent et al., 2007, 2013; Simmonds et al., 2004). In an analysis of ozone trends over Europe, Wilson et al. (2012) conclude that the impact of European precursor emission reductions was masked by other sources of unknown ozone variability. Analyses by Logan et al. (2012) and Cui et al. (2011) show that the measured ozone increases at Alpine sites over Europe during the 1990s followed by decreases after 2000 are not easily explained by changes in emissions or changes in lower stratospheric ozone. Pozzoli et al. (2011) conclude that changes in meteorology and natural emissions account for 75 % of ozone variability from 1980 to 2005, largely masking changes in anthropogenic emissions. On decadal timescales, ozone trends can depend sensitively on the exact time period examined (Cui et al., 2011).”
Ozone Hole Grew To (2015) Record Size Due To Natural Forcing
Ivy et al., 2017
“Recent research has demonstrated that the concentrations of anthropogenic halocarbons have decreased in response to the worldwide phaseout of ozone depleting substances. Yet, in 2015 the Antarctic ozone hole reached a historical record daily average size in October. Model simulations with specified dynamics and temperatures based on a reanalysis suggested that the record size was likely due to the eruption of Calbuco, but did not allow for fully-coupled dynamical or thermal feedbacks. We present simulations of the impact of the 2015 Calbuco eruption on the stratosphere using the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model with interactive dynamics and temperatures. Comparisons of the interactive and specified dynamics simulations indicate that chemical ozone depletion due to volcanic aerosols played a key role in establishing the record-sized ozone hole of October 2015. The analysis of an ensemble of interactive simulations with and without volcanic aerosols suggests that the forced response to the eruption of Calbuco was an increase in the size of the ozone hole by 4.5 million km2.”
Due To Measurement Uncertainties, ‘Methane Emissions Might Not Have Increased Dramatically…After All’
Turner et al., 2017
“We conclude that the current surface observing system does not allow unambiguous attribution of the decadal trends in methane without robust constraints on OH variability, which currently rely purely on methyl chloroform data and its uncertain emissions estimates.”
“[M]ethane emissions might not have increased dramatically in 2007 after all. Instead, the most likely explanation has less to do with methane emissions and more to do with changes in the availability of the hydroxyl (OH) radical, which breaks down methane in the atmosphere. As such, the amount of hydroxyl in the atmosphere governs the amount of methane. If global levels of hydroxyl decrease, global methane concentrations will increase — even if methane emissions remain constant, the researchers say. … When atmospheric concentrations of methane increase, it may not be correct to chalk it up solely to an increase in methane emissions“
Recent Methane Rise ‘Biogenic’ – Fossil Fuel Emissions Not A Driving Factor
Nisbet et al., 2016
“The isotopic evidence presented here suggests that the methane rise [2007-2014] was dominated by significant increases in biogenic methane emissions, particularly in the tropics, for example, from expansion of tropical wetlands in years with strongly positive rainfall anomalies or emissions from increased agricultural sources such as ruminants and rice paddies. Changes in the removal rate of methane by the OH radical have not been seen in other tracers of atmospheric chemistry and do not appear to explain short-term variations in methane. Fossil fuel emissions may also have grown, but the sustained shift to more 13C-depleted values and its significant interannual variability, and the tropical and Southern Hemisphere loci of post-2007 growth, both indicate that fossil fuel emissions have not been the dominant factor driving the increase. A major cause of increased tropical wetland and tropical agricultural methane emissions, the likely major contributors to growth, may be their responses to meteorological change.”
IPCC Estimates Of Methane Emissions Overestimated, Not Distinguishable From Natural Background
Ruppel and Kessler, 2017
“On the contemporary Earth, gas hydrate is dissociating in specific terrains in response to post-LGM [last glacial maximum] climate change and probably also due to warming since the onset of the Industrial Age. Nevertheless, there is no conclusive proof that the released methane is entering the atmosphere at a level that is detectable against the background of ~555 Tg yr−1 CH4 emissions. The IPCC estimates are not based on direct measurements of methane fluxes from dissociating gas hydrates, and many numerical models adopt simplifications that do not fully account for sinks, the actual distribution of gas hydrates, or other factors, resulting in probable overestimation of emissions to the ocean-atmosphere system.”
The Domination Of Natural CO2 Emissions
Carey et al., 2017
“While scientists and policy experts debate the impacts of global warming, Earth’s soil is releasing roughly nine times more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere than all human activities combined.”
Reich et al., 2016
“Plant respiration results in an annual flux of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere that is six times as large as that due to the emissions from fossil fuel burning, so changes in either will impact future climate.”
Zimmerman et al., 1982
“The estimated gross amount of CO2 produced [by termites] is more than twice the net global input from fossil fuel combustion. As we noted above, termites process the equivalent of about 28 percent of the earth’s NPP [net primary productivity, or plant energy].”
“The anthropogenic contribution to the actual CO2 concentration is found to be 4.3%, [and] its fraction to the CO2 increase over the Industrial Era is 15%“
39 responses to “Scientific Papers Indicate Natural Processes Dominate Changes In Ozone Hole, Methane And CO2 Emissions”
Can’t comment on ozone or methane right now, but I’ll comment on those last CO2 papers since we are currently having a related discussion in a thread in another post:
1) Munshi, 2015:
No it’s not a necessary condition. Natural variability didn’t just vanish with the advent of the human race.
And that’s what it is all about.
2) Harde, 2017:
3) Zimmerman et al., 1982:
This one says it is 4 GtCO2 or 1.1 GtC: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/JD095iD04p03619/full
This one basically says the same:
Which one is correct?
4) Reich et al., 2016:
“changes in either will impact future climate” … oh yes, they will. But the difference between emissions and absorption didn’t change by much in the last decades, see: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/compress:12/derivative/detrend:1.5 … very small fluctuations compared to what humans emit. And: if natural emissions would drop by 10 GtC tomorrow and absorption would continue as it did before, the CO2 concentration increase would stop and atmospheric CO2 content would start to decline. But it would still drop way faster if humans wouldn’t also emit roughly 10 GtC (or double that in 30-40 years if past increases in emissions continue on).
5) Carey et al., 2017:
You left out the key sentence in the summary: “As the global climate warms, will soil respiration rates increase, adding even more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere and accelerating climate change?”
That could be indeed a very big problem, because even if we could reduce our emissions to a minimal amount, if this happens we can’t do anything. That’s basically a Science News story warning from catastrophic climate change.
It’s too bad you couldn’t enlighten us with why humans control ozone levels and methane emissions.
It’s only “not a necessary condition” in your opinion because, obviously, human emission changes, which increased by an average of +0.16 GtC/year during 2006-2014, do not correlate well at all with the changes in CO2 ppm concentration rates during those years.
“It was found that the observed correlation between these variables derives solely from a common direction in their long term trends”
So correlation = causation when we look at long-term trends, but correlation doesn’t matter with short-term trends…because the correlation isn’t there. If data support one’s presuppositions, it’s right. Data that do not support one’s presuppositions are “not necessary” and do not need to be considered. And that’s what it is all about.
Come on, you linked to this paper (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2005GL023027/full) in another thread which clearly says why the CO2 concentration increases year over year vary. And now you are completely ignoring this, because if our emissions would be responsible for CO2 concentration increase it has to correlate perfectly and nothing else can influence the concentration simultaneously.
Why do you do this? Is that the skeptics way? Everything is possible when you want to show that an AGW proponent is wrong?
No one has written this. You’re just making up straw man arguments again, as is your habit. Again, since you realize there is no correlation between year-to-year fossil fuel emission changes and CO2 concentration changes, you have decided these non-correlations don’t count, and only the long-term (relatively speaking) apparent correlation counts…and then you leap to correlation = 100% causation. You have it both ways, and then blast others for pointing out your duplicity.
Not sure why you’d want to link to this paper, as it clearly indicates that natural ENSO events correlate with CO2 growth rates (i.e., warm El Niño years have higher growth rates, cooler La Niña years have lower growth rates), and “it is ulikely these anomalies can be explained by an abrupt increase in anthropogenic emissions, as the anomalies are much larger than annual increases in fossil fuel emissions”. In other words, CO2 concentration growth rates correlate with natural processes and are not likely explained by changes in fossil fuel emissions. And this undermines what’s been written here how?
Jones and Cox, 2005
“There is clear similarity between Figures 1b and 1c, with the positive CO2 growth rate anomalies corresponding to El Niño events, and the negative growth rate anomalies corresponding to La Niña events. The largest positive CO2 growth rate anomalies are coincident with large Niño3 values in 1973, 1988 and 1998. … It is unlikely that these anomalies can be explained by an abrupt increase in anthropogenic emissions, as the anomalies are much larger than annual increases in fossil fuel emissions.”
“Most interannual variability in the CO2 growth rate is attributable to variations in land-atmosphere CO2 exchange with climate (e.g., associated with ENSO or volcanic perturbations)“
The role of the carbon budget has aroused general interest among paleoclimatologists, after Delmas et al., (1980), Berner et al., (1980) and Oeschger (in et al. 1980) found evidence in Antarctic and Greenland ice cores, that the CO2-content of the atmosphere has varied between about 180 ppm during the last glacial (18 ka ago, ka = 103 years) and about 350 ppm (perhaps 400 ppm) during the Holocene warm epoch 6-8 ka ago.
The recent increase of the CO2-content of air varies distinctly from year to year, rather independent from the irregular annual increase of global CO2-production from fossil fuel and cement, which has since 1973 decreased from about 4.5 percent to 2.25 percent per year (Rotty 1981).
Comparative investigations (Keeling and Bacastow 1977, Newll et al. 1978, Angell 1981) found a positive correlation between the rate of increase of atmospheric CO2 and the fluctuations of sea surface temperature (SST) in the equatorial Pacific, which are caused by rather abrupt changes between upwelling cool water and downwelling warm water (“El Niño”) in the eastern equatorial Pacific. Indeed the cool upwelling water is not only rich in (anorganic) CO2 but also in nutrients and organisms. (algae) which consume much atmospheric CO2 in organic form, thus reducing the increase in atmospehreic CO2. Conversely the warm water of tropical oceans, with SST near 27°C, is barren, thus leading to a reduction of CO2 uptake by the ocean and greater increase of the CO2.
A crude estimate of these differences is demonstrated by the fact that during the period 1958-1974, the average CO2-increase within five selective years with prevailing cool water only 0.57 ppm/a [per year], while during five years with prevailing warm water it was 1.11 ppm/a. Thus in a a warm water year, more than one Gt (1015 g) carbon is additionally injected into the atmosphere, in comparison to a cold water year.
You wrote that human emissions do not correlate well to added atmospheric CO2. That implies that you think changes in human emissions have to match yearly ppm changes (if humans were responsible), doesn’t it?
Longterm trend in CO2 concentration increases: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/compress:12/derivative
Matches increasing human CO2 output. This paper describes the mechanisms in play: http://www.journalrepository.org/media/journals/JGEESI_42/2017/Jan/Ludecke842016JGEESI30532_1_1.pdf
Because it shows that those fluctuations in short term are natural variability. Longterm, see woodfortrees graph above.
No they don’t. They correlate with the anomalies in CO2 concentration change. An important difference.
You probably think this says that human emissions are not “strong enough”, right? That’s not the case. These anomalies are smaller in size than what humans emit. If our emissions could be switched off one year and switched on the other year we would see a far larger anomaly. Why: see paper explaining the mechanisms.
Please Kenneth, go find a friend you trust and show them our other thread. You are still making the same mistake of confusing values with different units to be comparable. Show them the thread and maybe if you hear it from them, you can finally see where you are wrong.
That’s quite a bit different than what you falsely claim I wrote: “it [anthropogenic emission] has to correlate perfectly and nothing else can influence the concentration simultaneously”. I didn’t write that. You did. You made it up.
And natural variability is naturally caused, of course. But apparently you believe that after a long enough period of time has elapsed, the natural caused variations in CO2 growth morph into 100% human attribution for CO2 variation. That’s why only a long-term correlation counts, short-term variations don’t, and correlation = 100% human causation. How scientific!
“That implies that you think changes in human emissions have to match yearly ppm changes (if humans were responsible), doesn’t it?”
Does it not imply that you think those variations in ppm changes need to be of human origin (perfect correlation year-to-year) in order for humans to be responsible of ppm increase?
Maybe this spreadsheet helps you understand the difference between totals, yearly increases (first derivation) and changes in those increases (second derivation). You can clearly see that yearly human emissions (first derivation) are bigger in value than yearly added atmospheric carbon (also first derivation) and the variations in the later one, never exceed human emissions. It’s just the usual natural variations which are very small (see second chart on the chart tab of that spreadsheet, blue line, never touching red line)
Since there is effectively no correlation between the change in GtC/year increase and the CO2 ppm concentration change/year on a year-to-year basis (for example, the CO2 ppm changes declined from the mid-1980s to the early 1990s while GtC emissions were rising with alacrity), and yet there is a correlation between natural warm water years and natural cool water years and CO2 concentration change, this implies that temperature changes drive CO2 changes…which has been confirmed throughout the scientific literature. Yes, I think the observation that CO2 follows temperature and natural climate events undermines the case for 100% human causation of CO2 concentration changes. But no, for the third time, I did not use the words you concocted, saying that anthropogenic emission “has to correlate perfectly and nothing else can influence the concentration simultaneously“). I don’t think/write like that, using absolutist language (“correlate perfectly”, “nothing else can influence”). Stop making up stuff and claiming I wrote it. It’s dishonest.
Obviously you believe that short-term non-correlations in GtC emissions/CO2 ppm changes don’t matter (because there isn’t one), but long-term correlations do matter(because CO2 has risen at the same time that human emissions have risen). And therefore you easily leap from a sometimes correlation to 100% causation. Never mind that CO2 concentration changes didn’t correlate with human emissions in the past. Never mind that CO2 concentration changes follow , rather than lead, temperature changes in a correlative fashion. Never mind that yearly natural GtC emissions fluctuate by 2 orders of magnitude (100 Xs) greater than human emissions do according to a textbook written by an atmospheric physicist. You have a correlation (sometimes). And therefore you believe in 100% causation. Sorry, I’m more skeptical than that.
When are you going to get around to enlightening us with how we humans have deterministic control of ozone with our emissions? When are you going to enlighten us with why humans are the control agents of methane emissions? Why so much focus on CO2? After all, even the IPCC says that if we double CO2 concentration from preindustrial levels (560 ppm), the highest temperature achieved from that doubling alone will be slightly more than 1 degree C. That’s it. It’s only modeled feedback with water vapor and clouds that is what is assumed to cause a temperature change of 3 C or more. CO2 only causes 1 degree of warming when doubled according to the IPCC!
Why would you be worried about such a small change — especially since in pre-industrial times we were about 2 or more degrees colder than what temperatures were during Medieval times? In other words, we may be about halfway back to as warm as it was when the Vikings were farming on Greenland. What is your obsession with CO2 that you feel the need to swoop in here on every thread and defend your beliefs about CO2-caused climate catastrophes? Do you believe that we’ll get 10 feet of sea level rise by 2065, as James Hansen and much of the media believe? If not, why not? Why are you so insistent upon trying to persuade us? It’s not working, SebastianH. In fact, you’re making it worse.
By the way, SebastianH, explain the process whereby natural variability is transformed into 100% human causation after enough time has elapsed. How does a natural cause morph into a human cause?
You haven’t looked at the spreadsheet, since you continue to make this one huge mistake.
I am focussing on this topic now, because I believe that your missunderstanding could be one of the reasons why you are skeptic in the first place. Your way of confusing increases and/or changes of increases with totals could do that and my hope is, that once you realize the mistake you might have a different view on the human influence on climate. I am focussing on this now, because it never occured to me, that you are mixing up those thing until recently. So here we go. I won’t stop until you get it or you have convinced me that comparing values with different units is ok to do 😉
So, let’s begin … again:
How could there be? Changes in yearly human carbon emissions (GtC/year²) is the second derivation of a total (carbon released by humans, unit GtC), while added atmospheric carbon per year (GtC/year) is the first derivation of a total (carbon in the atmosphere, unit GtC).
If you want to compare those two and find correlations you have to use values that have the same unit! Look at the spreadsheet above! You can only compare columns with the same color!
The other issue was addressed in the reply to Juergen Uhlemann below (and you can also see how small those natural variations are compared to human emissions in the second chart on the second tab in the spreadsheet i mentioned).
I know you don’t like analogies, but you are basically saying that a little kid randomly pouring water into a pool with a small cup is the reason why the pool fills up, because you measured the water level of the pool and the differences of the increases match those cup pourings. They do, that’s correct. But you are completely ignoring that there is also a water hose filling up the pool and the same time.
P.S.: Please try to not got offtopic. This is important to me. I want you to understand your error here. You’ll be thankful when you do. I don’t really care right now if CO2 concentration has a big or small influence on climate. I just want you to understand that you are comparing figures with different units and that’s leading to wrong conclusions for you.
Well, your belief would be wrong. I am a skeptic mainly because there is no real-world evidence that raising or lowering CO2 concentrations in volumes of (0.000001) is the cause of cooling or heating in the 0-4000 m ocean — nor any body of water…and yet people like you believe in it anyway. Whether or not humans contribute most or only some of the CO2 concentration matters little to me. Actually, since CO2 greens the planet and enhances crop yields, I would have no problem if humans are having an influential impact on the CO2 concentration…I’d prefer to think that we do…but remain agnostic. So your own misunderstandings and errors with regard to human vs. nature CO2 contribution just don’t mean all that much to me — nor does it really mean anything to me that someone who I don’t consider to be informed on the matter (you) thinks I am wrong. Because, again, It all revolves around climate sensitivity to CO2 concentration. That CO2 molecules are spaced apart 1/10,000ths more closely in the atmosphere now vs. 100 years because of nature or human activity is not the issue.
I do. If doubling CO2 concentrations to 560 ppm doesn’t change water temperatures to any significant degree (and we have no real-world evidence that it does), and if glaciers aren’t melting and sea levels aren’t rising due to human activity, but as part of the natural course of events in a naturally-varying system, then there is no point in polluting the landscape with bat-killing wind turbines and paying trillions more per year for intermittent, unreliable energies that only serve to delay the rescuing of poor people from their poverty. As a humanitarian, that’s what I care about.
I really don’t care that you have a spreadsheet, or analogies about cups and balls and ovens.
Good, then why are you so stubbornly making the error of comparing numbers to each other that have different units? Why not take a step back, ask a friend, realize your error and be a better skeptic after that, because you finally understand how CO2 concentration changes depend on human emissions?
You are basically comparing acceleration to speed (and sometimes speed to distance) … hope you didn’t vomit because of that short analogy.
Then find someone informed (basic math skills are enough) you trust and ask them if they think you are comparing apples to apples or if there really is a unit problem. I don’t want you to be wrong on this one, pretending to be right and base strange theories on that missunderstanding. Get help!
Don’t stray away from the topic at hand. Whenever you make the error and compare totals with yearly changes or yearly changes with changes of those yearly changes, I’ll point that out to you. No need to talk about things further down the chain of arguments you are building against climate alarmism. If the base is wrong, the next argument is a weak one at best.
Above you wrote that it matters little to you whether or not humans contribute most or only some of the CO2 concentration. Why are you afraid of realizing that you made a mistake then? It doesn’t matter, right?
CO2 concentration changes depend on (ocean) temperatures primarily. With warm anomalies, more CO2 is released. With cool anomalies, less CO2 is released. Temperature leads CO2 changes on both short-term and long-term timescales. You are free to believe that humans cause 100% of CO2 concentration changes anyway. I know that I and no one else will be able to help you.
No long-term correlation between airborne fraction (fossil fuels) and human emissions: http://ej.iop.org/images/1748-9326/8/1/011006/erl459410f3_online.jpg
“There exist a clear phase relationship between changes of atmospheric CO2 and the different global temperature records, whether representing sea surface temperature, surface air temperature, or lower troposphere temperature, with changes in the amount of atmospheric CO2 always lagging behind corresponding changes in temperature.
Observable correlations between long-term variations in the global temperature (GT) and CO2 content do not mean that the CO2 increase causes an increase in the global temperature. Actually observable temperature rise in the ocean also results in the increased content of CO2 in the atmosphere; therefore, such changes can be a consequence, but not a cause of global heating.
So as to remain on topic, SebastianH, explain why you believe humans control ozone and methane emissions. Then explain the process whereby natural variability is transformed into 100% human causation after enough time has elapsed. How does a natural cause morph into a human cause?
While you’re at it, explain how sensitive the climate is to CO2 doubling to 560 ppm. The IPCC says the direct effect of CO2 doubling will only lead to a temperature change of about 1 degree C. Do you believe that 1 degree of warming is catastrophic?
Those variations caused by temperature are super small (see: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/mean:12/isolate:24/plot/esrl-co2/mean:12/isolate:24/trend ). The trendline clearly shows the overall increase since the late 50s caused by those variations is smaller than 0.1 ppm, meaning those variations now contribute 0.1 ppm to the complete increase from the late 50s until now (almost 100 ppm).
The airborne fraction staying the same just means that around half of our CO2 gets absorbed by nature, no matter how much we emit. If nature is able to do this indefinetly is unknown. There might be a point in time when oceans (or land) just can’t absorb as much CO2 anymore … but that’s a bit off topic.
I started this thread addressing the topic CO2 changes with the intention of demonstrating you the error you are constantly making when discussing CO2. No need to deviate to ozone or methane. Please stick to CO2 and why you should not compare figures with different units.
No transformation. Natural variability is small(additional ~1 ppm / year during the last El Nino: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/compress:12/derivative/detrend:1.54036) compared to human output of CO2 (4.5 ppm / year) or the CO2 content increase (of around 2 ppm / year).
No morphing involved. The natural cause is just very small. The variations by temperature changes are smaller than overall CO2 increase and human CO2 emissions are much bigger too. You are really ignoring the garden hose filling the pool and think a small kid with a cup is doing all the work, because you can see those variations in the speed the water level increases when you continously measure it, but somehow are able to ignore that the water level rises much faster than what would be possible by those cup pourings 😉
The IPCC says: “there is high confidence that ECS is extremely unlikely less than 1°C and medium confidence that the ECS is likely between 1.5°C and 4.5°C and very unlikely greater than 6°C.”
The 1°C value is “without any feedback”, caused just by the 3.7 W/m² forcing increase of a doubling of atmospheric CO2 content. It’s unlikely that negative feedbacks will dominate as they haven’t as of yet, therefor it is unlikely that ECS is less than 1°C.
I don’t believe that this is catastrophic in the sense that it will not end mankind or that it will affect the lifes of people in Central Europe very much. But I am pretty sure that a not so insignificant percentage of the population on this planet might have increased costs of living and/or doing business.
And there is always the chance that some kind of runaway condition can occur which would indeed be catastrophic. Or as one of your links above put it: “As the global climate warms, will soil respiration rates increase, adding even more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere and accelerating climate change?”
Wrong again, SebastianH. During the very warm Super El Nino years (1998, 2015/2016), CO2 concentrations changed by 3 ppm. During the post-Pinatubo cooling, CO2 changed by 0.5 ppm. During the La Nina cooling in 1999, CO2 growth was just 1 ppm. That’s about a 2 to 2.5 ppm difference in CO2 concentration change based upon temperature. Your 0.1 ppm is just made-up nonsense. Again.
Again, the 3, 4, 5, and 6 degrees of warming is the expected result when including the modeled positive feedbacks with water vapor and cloud. By itself, when CO2 reaches 560 ppm the modeled radiative result of expected warming is just 1.2°C. That’s why I asked you why you believe water vapor and cloud have not contributed to the increase in temperature since industrial times. The IPCC believes (and they actually use that word) that between 20% and 80% of the warming expected by 2100 (or whenever we reach 560 ppm) will be contributed by modeled positive feedbacks with water vapor and cloud…only 1.2 C will come from CO2 concentration doubling. I assume you are a believer in this too. So let me ask again: Why do you believe that 20-80% of future warming will come from positive feedbacks with water vapor and cloud, and yet effectively 0% of the warming since 1850 has been contributed from positive feedbacks with water vapor and cloud? When will the positive feedback temperature-forcing finally “kick in” – and why hasn’t it yet?
Yes, I suppose that could occur. And we could plummet into another Little Ice Age too. That wouldn’t be good, would it?
Do you also believe that more than one million species will go extinct sometime within the next 33 years due to human-caused climate change? Do you believe we’ll get 10 feet of sea level rise by 2065, as James Hansen believes?
Is this some bite reflex now? You have to write “you are wrong”, whatever I write?
Just look at the graph that the 0.1 ppm figure is next to. It’s monthly changes.
In total, yes. A large amount of those 3 ppm was of human origin. See: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/compress:12/derivative/plot/esrl-co2/compress:12/derivative/detrend:1.54
The detrended line is the interesting one. Those are the yearly variations of added CO2 concent in the atmosphere (which corresponds to acceleration if we were talking about distance, speed and acceleration instead of totals, increases and change of increases in CO2 content). Human emissions would be up at the 4 ppm mark. See: http://imgur.com/a/ZFoN8 for a comparison of natural variations (“wiggle” in the blue line) and human emissions (the red line).
The ppm count increases by ~2 ppm in the El Nino year 1998 and decreases by nearly the same amount in the next year. You can take the mean of those variations and subtract it from those variations. Put a trendline through the result or calculate the sum of all values and you get the influence on the ppm count of those variations. It’s lots of ups and downs. Not just ups.
It hasn’t? Why is it already almost 1°C warmer than at the start of the 20th century? CO2 content hasn’t doubled yet, has it?
And yes, I believe there are more positive feedbacks than negative ones.
I don’t know … would it? All change requires adaptation, which could be expensive and not everyone will be able to adapt fast enough. I mean, some people are actively planning to colonize Mars or build a base on the Moon. If humans can live there, they sure as hell can live on an Earth with a different climate. The question is, can all 7 or 8 or 9 oder 10 or 20 billion humans do that too?
It’s not impossible. I don’t believe in such things however. Predicting the future, no matter how good your models are, can only show a direction, not specific events at specific times.
But what I do believe is that we will see a technological singularity (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity) this century. And what that does to climate … who knows. Maybe our endeavours into space will lead to new technology for sources of energy and recycling everything in a artificial biosphere that can be used back on Earth? Everything is possible. Maybe we already reached peak CO2 output (3 years in a row, no increase) and it will not be business as usual as what those models use as a basis? We can change the future, that’s what I am trying to say. Or we can just let happen what models predict.
Ha! No, SebastianH, ocean temperatures increased dramatically during the naturally-forced Super El Nino years, which allowed the oceans to release more (3 ppm) of their stored CO2 several months later. During cooling years, like La Nina years and after volcanic eruptions (Pinatubo), only 0.5 to 1.0 ppm was released from the oceans. The ocean temperature determined the CO2 change far more than any anthropogenic emission change did. That’s because there was no abrupt increase in anthropogenic emission during 1998 and 2016. There was no abrupt decrease in anthropogenic emission in 1992 or 1999. There WAS an abrupt increase and decrease in temperature, however, as a consequence of natural forcing events, that released more (less) CO2 and thus changed the ppm change rate. In other words, the year-to-year correlation with temperatures leading CO2 growth rates is very strong, whereas the year-to-year correlation with anthropogenic emissions is weak to non-existent.
For a visualization, see here:
A striking non-correlation between CO2 growth rate and CO2 emissions changes is shown here:
Not only that, but there is a long-term non-correlation between the airborne fraction and fossil fuels too:
Of course! If the correlation with temperature-leading-CO2 fits really well (and it obviously does), it must be dismantled and covered up. Adjustments must be made — don’t use the actual change, take the mean and subtract it! This way the inconvenient data can be be eliminated. Sorry SebastianH, I’m not buying what you’re selling.
Dear God Seb. get real. “As the global climate warms, will soil respiration rates increase, adding even more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere and accelerating climate change?” So they haven’t a clue, but come up with a scary sentence just to keep the pot boiling.
Tell Kenneth to “get real”. He is the author of the post and brought up that “news story”.
Solar activity appears to be the main influence on both the ozone hole AND climate variability as per the mechanism described here:
A recently published paper supporting this…
Pande et al., 2017
“Ozone is a highly reactive, naturally occurring ingredient of the stratosphere that is produced from oxygen by sunlight. It is one of the most important chemicals in both the stratosphere and troposphere. Apart from absorbing the harmful ultaviolet radiation from the sun, it [ozone] also plays an important role in determining earth’s climate. Solar variability affects ozone through radiative heating in atmosphere. Solar UV radiation is absorbed by atmospheric ozone. It is responsible for both the creation and destruction of ozone. … The total ozone was found to be enhanced during magnetically disturbed conditions which are associated with peak solar activity periods. Angell and Korshover (1976) concluded that there is nearly in-phase relationship between sunspot number and total ozone.”
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Humlum et al., 2012
The phase relation between atmospheric carbon dioxide and global temperature
One of the graphics:
Global changes in atmospheric CO2 levels lag global temperature
If you use http://www.woodfortrees.org, then you can create the graphic yourself
I’ve seen this relation many years back, but lost the link. Thanks to Sebastian Lüning (Die kalte Sonne), who had send me a link in relation to Humlum et al., 2012.
It is amazing that a closer look and a different point of view turns the whole argument by 180 degree. The ice core data show the same CO2 lag in the past and the AGW believer turned it around to proof that man is causing it.
Correct. CO2 changes follow temperature changes on both short-term and long-term timescales.
apparently you do not realize what this graph (http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/esrl-co2/isolate:24/mean:12/from:1958/to:2016/plot/hadcrut4gl/isolate:24/mean:12/from:1958/to:2016) shows. By using the “isolate” feature you are removing any trend (by removing the running mean over 24 months) just leaving the noise (or variations). So you compare variations to variations.
This gives you a graph that shows the usual lag of CO2 concentration changes behind temperature changes, but it doesn’t show you if the overall increase in concentration correlates to or lags temperatures in any way. That’s an important difference.
However, you can get the CO2 concentration trend and temperature trend on that graphing site, too 😉
Here you go:
(the offsets for the temperature datasets were taken from the “getting the baselines right” explanation: http://www.woodfortrees.org/notes#baselines)
Guess what SebastianH, this comparing variations to variations was exactly what I had in mind.
This “usual lag of CO2 concentration changes behind temperature changes” is exactly the point. This shows the action and reaction relationship and it means that the man made climate change argument can’t be right.
This means that the comparison I show can help to start to develop the physical law or at least some of it. To many factors are involved to understand earths climate.
It is clear that the CO2 can’t have any (or very very little) impact on the temperature. At the time the temperature reaches a maximum and the CO2 is still increasing, the temperature drops. This show that the CO2 is NOT the cause.
Maybe I can show you in a simple example what I mean.
You leave an open barrel outside and you find after 1 year that the barrel has a certain amount of water in it. Can you tell me when or how often it rained?
By your graph it is impossible. You just know that it increased.
If you check every day at least once the water level, you would know how much it rained since you checked last. This is science or in other words meteorology.
I’m just saying: Details is the key. Just consider “Richard Feynman on Scientific Method (1964)” https://youtu.be/0KmimDq4cSU
Btw.: Do you know the difference between Newton’s and Einstein’s law of gravity, which are quite similar. Einstein’s law of gravity explains why Mercury moves the way it does. Again, details!
Btw.: The renewable energy guys work with the same “one year” argument and that it gets every year better and better. If you know the problems that Germany experienced on the 24th of January this year, then you might understand that the yearly installation increase is the wrong point of view. Wrong action/reaction relationship. The sun and the wind are the drivers and not the solar farms and the wind farm.
One more thing. “Average” is just an amazing argument and does not tell you anything at all. I’ve seen in the past comments that the average of CO2 is correct, as the CO2 is distributed quite well.
The GEOS-5 / GMAO / NASA data displayed at https://earth.nullschool.net/#current/chem/surface/level/overlay=co2sc/equirectangular shows a different picture. The difference between the max and min value of the CO2 can be as much as 40 ppmv, which is more that 10 times the yearly. increase. I wonder how high the measurement failure rate at Mauna Loa is.
You are making the same mistake, Kenneth makes.
No, the temperature change reaches a maximum and the CO2 change lags behind that. Huge difference.
A small (+-1 ppm) change of the yearly CO2 increase from one year to the other caused by natural fluctuations doesn’t make 4.5+ ppm / year of human emissions just go away. Here is a graph for you: http://imgur.com/a/ZFoN8
The blue line is the yearly CO2 increase in the atmosphere. It “wiggles” a bit because of those natural changes and you can probably see how little those variations contribute to the overall yearly CO2 increase. Above is the red line … human emissions. That’s where the increase mainly comes from, because without those emissions the yearly CO2 increase would look like the yellow line.
Ok, let’s check that barrel every hour. You’ll see exactly when it rained and how much was added. Maybe you sometimes use the water for your garden and you’ll see that drop too. But what you are forgetting is, that there is a garden hose connected to that barrel that constantly outputs orders of magnitude more water than what you get from the rain.
Got it? Those small variations from rain and garden usage (ups and downs) pale next to the garden hose output. The water level in your barrel mainly increases because of the garden hose, not those small variations.
As long as the conditions don’t change at that place, why does it matter that CO2 is not well mixed and concentration changes with seasons? It’s not the only CO2 measurement station on this planet, but the one with the longest record apparently.
Thanks for the link to the human emissions that is added to the atmosphere. Quite interesting what you presented. Just one question, where is this data coming from? According to the “PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency + European Commission Joint Research Centre Institute for Environment and Sustainability” report, the amount in 2014 was 35.7 billion tonnes CO2.
We both agree that the CO2 measured on Mauna Loa increased since 1959.
There is an old NOAA document from October 1974 that has this text:
“Annual average temperatures over the Northern Hemisphere increased rather dramatically from about 1890 through 1940, but have been falling ever since. The total change has averaged about one-half degree Centigrade, with the greatest cooling in higher latitudes.”
Unfortunately, there are only CO2 measurements since 1959, but if I consider 1959 to 1073 then according to Mauna Loa this totals to 14.21 ppm. This is about 6.5 times the increase of 2014 alone. CO2 increase and cooling.
If you know it or not, this was the time when scientists believed that a new little ice age is coming. Still in 1978, the well known late Dr. Steven Schneider believed it. You know, the man “literally” behind Al Gore (Video @1:56). https://youtu.be/1b2_g4ww6es
This means that from 1940 to at least 1978 it cooled so much that scientists talked about a little ice age. You know that this time frame counts as climate data, as it is at least 30 years long.
The following 20 years the temperature increased, which is not a time frame to count as climate data. Then came the pause, which even the IPCC admitted.
2016 was now with 14.8 degree Celsius the warmest year ever, which is 0.2 degree Celsius below the 15 degree Celsius (the globe’s normal 20th century mean temperature).
Hmm, did you understand what I was writing? Because I see no mention of the problem in your reply.
To your more or less unrelated points:
CO2 concentration data comes from woodfortrees, human CO2 emissions comes from Kenneth Richards (in another comment thread on this blog), but I confirmed them doing a quick Google search. The unit is GtC not GtCO2 … the factor to convert between those two is 3.67, i think. So 35.7 GtCO2 equals 9.7 GtC.
Why do you see this as contradiction? It cools in the night, despite CO2 content in the atmosphere increasing. The small difference from ~315 ppm to ~329 ppm doesn’t cause much change in CO2 forcing, but it’s there. Without it, it would have cooled even more. CO2 induced temperature increase is “on top” on all natural variations of temperature (like day/night, like the seasons or like changes in TSI, etc).
I know that. It was also a time where scientists believed a lot of other things. Errors were corrected and knowledge was gathered and grew exponentially since then, as did everything else. We have a much better understanding of the world as in the 60s and 70s 😉 Do you disagree?
Then go even longer: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1958/mean:12/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1958/offset:0.14/mean:12/plot/rss/offset:0.30/mean:12/plot/uah6/offset:0.43/mean:12
Do you see a hiatus?
Or lets take ocean heat content: https://www.nature.com/article-assets/npg/nclimate/journal/v6/n4/images_article/nclimate2915-f4.jpg
Any hiatus? Except indeed the cooling the 60s and directly after El Ninos in 1983 and 1998/99.
What is that supposed to mean?
Do you see any sign that the 20th century was 0.2 degrees warmer than 2016?
SebastianH, you really amuse me. 😀
“It cools in the night, despite CO2 content in the atmosphere increasing.”
That is given, but this is local. At the same time there is daylight at other locations on this globe and “mean” temperature is day and night combined. I know that the Irish Met office is measuring every hour at 25 locations and this is thrown into the mix.
The title of your graph says “CO2 in the atmosphere vs. human emissions” and it reads in the graph “Atmospheric carbon content added” then you one is wrong. “The equivalent carbon content concept is used on ferrous materials, typically steel and cast iron, to determine various properties of the alloy when more than just carbon is used as an alloyant, which is typical.”
Your question “Do you see a hiatus?” – The hiatus discussion is in IPCC Working Group I 2013 Report. The word hiatus is used 53 times. http://www.climatechange2013.org/images/report/WG1AR5_ALL_FINAL.pdf
“Nevertheless, the occurrence of the hiatus in GMST trend during the past 15 years raises the two related questions of what has caused it and whether climate models are able to reproduce it.” means nothing else as that the understanding is not better than in the 60sand 70s. The believe has changed.
On the other hand, the NOAA document talks about real measurement “… falling ever since. The total change has averaged about one-half degree Centigrade” and this should be still in the data set today. If not, than someone has changed the original data set.
The discussion about the start and end of an increase within a temperature graph starting at the end of a little ice age is not really helpful. The only thing that one can see is that the CO2 value has increased constantly since 1959 but the temperature has not like in the hiatus. This just proves that the “climate models” can not reproduce it and this means that the understanding has still a big hole.
I guess you did not see NASA’s press release or you would not ask what it means. “NASA, NOAA Data Show 2016 Warmest Year on Record Globally” https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-noaa-data-show-2016-warmest-year-on-record-globally
The reference “0.2 degree Celsius below the 15 degree Celsius” is in relation to https://notrickszone.com/2017/06/17/what-a-mess-spiegel-reveals-scientists-dont-know-real-temperature-of-the-planet/#sthash.p1iVf10V.dpbs
Just one more thing:
“Let’s recall that the planetary average is today 15 °C, but if we calculate the average over the last million years, we will get something closer to 11 or 12 °C, because Earth has mainly experienced ice ages over that time. Source: Zachos et al., Science, 2001”
Maybe I should use more the termonology of the NASA in 2010 “This absorption and radiation of heat by the atmosphere—the natural greenhouse effect—is beneficial for life on Earth. If there were no greenhouse effect, the Earth’s average surface temperature would be a very chilly -18°C (0°F) instead of the comfortable 15°C (59°F) that it is today.”
If 15°C is comfortable, what is then 14.8°C? I would say 0.2°C below the comfortable 15°C
This means that we have not reached the comfortable 15°C and comfortable is basically not considered too warm.
SebastianH – You said:
“No, the temperature change reaches a maximum and the CO2 change lags behind that. Huge difference.
That’s precisely what Eric Monin et al., found back in 2001. “CO2 increase lags 600-800 years temperature increase. It was the conclusion of their study published in Science. So it is, as you said: “…CO2 change lags [temperature maximum]. Where is the difference between what Kenneth Richards says -and all of us sceptics too?
Energy Secretary Rick Perry said Monday he does not believe carbon dioxide is a primary contributor to global warming, a statement at odds with mainstream scientific consensus but in line with the head of the Environmental Protection Agency.
Asked on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” whether carbon emissions are primarily responsible for climate change, Perry said no, adding that “most likely the primary control knob is the ocean waters and this environment that we live in.”
Perry’s view is contrary to mainstream climate science, including analyses by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The EPA under President Donald Trump recently removed a web page that declared “carbon dioxide is the primary greenhouse gas that is contributing to recent climate change.”
Taking down the web page came after EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, appearing on “Squawk Box” in March, said “there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact” of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases on the planet.
“So, no, I would not agree that (carbon dioxide) is a primary contributor to the global warming that we see,” Pruitt said.
The Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, organized by the United Nations, calls carbon dioxide the biggest heat trapping force, responsible for about 33 times more added warming than natural causes.
The panel’s calculations mean carbon dioxide alone accounts for between 1 and 3 degrees warming, said MIT atmospheric scientist Kerry Emanuel.
Perry, like Pruitt, rejected the scientific consensus on climate change.
“This idea that science is just absolutely settled and if you don’t believe it’s settled then you’re somehow another Neanderthal, that is so inappropriate from my perspective,” he said.
Being a skeptic about climate change issues is “quite all right,” Perry added, saying skepticism is a sign of being a “wise, intellectually engaged person.”
Recently, The Associated Press sent Pruitt’s comments to numerous scientists who study climate. All seven climate scientists who responded said Pruitt was wrong and that carbon dioxide is the primary driver of global warming.
Perry, in his TV appearance Monday, said there should not be a debate about whether the climate is changing or if humans have an effect on the climate. Instead, he said the debate should be on “what are the policy changes that we need to make to affect that?”
Shaye Wolf, climate science director at the Center for Biological Diversity, said Perry “has the science exactly backward.”
Far from being a key cause of climate change, “the world’s oceans are actually another victim of greenhouse pollution,” Wolf said. “Our oceans absorb millions of tons of carbon dioxide a day, making them dangerously acidic.”
Warming oceans also put “tremendous stress on marine life,” Wolf said.
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NASA and NOAA reported in January that earth’s 2016 temperatures were the warmest ever. The planet’s average surface temperature has risen about 2 degrees Fahrenheit since the late 19th century, “a change driven largely by increased carbon dioxide and other human-made emissions into the atmosphere,” the agencies said in a joint statement.
Earlier this month, Trump announced he will withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord. The agreement signed by 195 nations in 2015 aims to decrease global carbon emissions in an effort to head off the worst predicted effects of global warming, including worsening storms, catastrophic droughts and city-drowning sea level rise.
The Trump administration has also moved to roll back or delay numerous rules approved by the Obama administration to cut pollution from mining operations, oil and gas wells and coal-fired power plants.
According to the IPCC, even if CO2 were doubled to 560 ppm, the limit for the amount of warming from CO2 alone is 1.2 C. So Kerry Emanuel is at odds with the IPCC.
Hmm, 1.2 is between 1 and 3. The 1.2 °C is only an average of different predictions after all …
Wrong again, SebastianH. It’s not an average. It’s the calculated temperature change with 3.7 W m-2 of assumed radiative forcing (they round it up to 4 W m-2). You should know this – I shouldn’t have to teach you your own hypothesis. In the IPCC/fundamental AGW models the only way the 1.2°C reaches 3, 4, 5 degrees C is with modeled assumptions about runaway water vapor/cloud feedback…which they failed to realize back when they made it up that more clouds means more net cooling.
Why are you so worried about a total of slightly more than 1 degree of warming from the depths of the Little Ice Age hypothetically caused by a 560 ppm CO2 concentration? That’s not even enough CO2-warming to bring us back to Medieval Warm Period levels.
Why are you a believer that the feedback response with water vapor and cloud will cause temperatures to increase an additional 2 – 4°C beyond the 1.2°C caused by CO2 when we reach 560 ppm, but yet at the same time you don’t believe water vapor or cloud feedbacks were responsible for much of any of the temperature change since 1950? When do you believe the runaway feedback process with water vapor/cloud will finally “kick in” and cause most temperature changes as the models predict, since you don’t believe they have done so yet?
The increase of equilibrium surface temperature for doubled atmospheric CO2 is ∼1.2°C. This case is of special interest because it is the purely radiative-convective result, with no feedback effects.
“The radiative forcing resulting from doubled atmospheric CO2 would increase the surface and tropospheric temperature by 1.2°C if there were no feedbacks in the climate system.”
“If there were no feedbacks in the Earth’s climate system, physics tells us climate sensitivity would be 1.2°C for a doubling of CO2.”
“An increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration from 275 to 550 ppm is expected to increase radiative forcing by about 4 W m2, which would lead to a direct warming of 1.2°C in the absence of feedbacks or other responses of the climate system”
“By itself, doubling atmospheric CO2 would increase global temperatures by about 1.2 degrees C. Even most of the scientists skeptical of the severity of climate change agree on this basic point.”
[W]arming from a doubling of CO2 would only be about 1°C (based on simple calculations where the radiation altitude and the Planck temperature depend on wavelength in accordance with the attenuation coefficients of wellmixed CO2 molecules; a doubling of any concentration in ppmv produces the same warming because of the logarithmic dependence of CO2’s absorption on the amount of CO2) (IPCC, 2007).
The central dogma is critically evaluated in the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory of the IPCC, claiming the Planck response is 1.2K when CO2 is doubled
.IPCC AR4: “If the amount of carbon dioxide were doubled instantaneously, with everything else remaining the same, the outgoing infrared radiation would be reduced by about 4 Wm-2. In other words, the radiative forcing corresponding to a doubling of the CO2 concentration would be 4 Wm-2. To counteract this imbalance, the temperature of the surface-troposphere system would have to increase by 1.2°C (with an accuracy of ±10%), in the absence of other changes.
“It is believed [the IPCC admits it’s only a belief] that the overall effect of the feedbacks amplifies the temperature increase to 1.5 to 4.5°C. A significant part of this uncertainty range arises from our limited knowledge of clouds and their interactions with radiation.”
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