When Eruptions Don’t

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

Inspired by Richard Keen’s interesting WUWT post on using eclipses to determine the clarity of the atmosphere, I went to the website of the Hawaiian Mauna Loa Observatory. They have some very fascinating datasets. One of them is a measurement of direct solar radiation, minute by minute, since about 1980.

I thought that I could use that dataset to determine the clarity of the atmosphere by looking at the maximum downwelling solar energy on a month by month basis. I’ve described my method of extracting the maximum solar energy from the minute by minute data in the appendix for those interested.

Now, according to Dr. Keen, the air is cleaner now than it’s been in a while:

“Based on the color and brightness of recent eclipses, we can say that Earth’s stratosphere is as clear as it has been in decades. There are very few volcanic aerosols up there,” he explains.

Now, the Mauna Loa Observatory (“MLO”) is a great place for taking measurements of a variety of things. Located at an elevation of 11,135 feet (3,394 m), it is above the low-lying clouds (although not all clouds, it gets snow …).

So what it is measuring is basically what Dr. Keen is measuring, the clarity of the upper part of the troposphere and the stratosphere above that. Any aerosols in the stratosphere will cut down on the maximum amount of sunshine that makes it through. With that as prologue, here is the record of maximum sunlight at MLO.

average max solar mauna loa with volcanoes.png

Figure 1. Maximum sunshine, month by month, at MLO. Vertical colored bars show a 2-year period starting at the eruption dates of the two volcanos, El Chichon and Pinatubo. Values are in watts/metre squared (W/m2).

To start with, we can see that whether Dr. Keen is right on a global basis about the atmosphere being as clear as it has been in decades, it is certainly not true at MLO. Other than after the volcanic eruptions, the clarity of the atmosphere is unchanged since 1980.

However, I had a deeper purpose. My theory, as I have discussed many times, is that the clouds respond to changes in total forcing in such a manner as to oppose them. Given that, I wondered what I could determine about what happens at MLO after big volcanic eruptions of the type shown in Figure 1.

To investigate this question, I looked at the minute by minute maximum solar energy and compared it to the average solar energy. I divided the dataset shown above into two parts—the two 2-year volcanic sections shown as vertical colored bars in Figure 1, and the rest of the data. Figure 2 shows just the part of the dataset that does not contain the eruptions. It lays out both the maximum solar energy and the average solar energy after losses due mostly to clouds.

daily max avg solar mauna loa no volc.png

Figure 2. Average minute-by-minute evolution of the daily maximum and average solar radiation at MLO.

Fresh powder snow in the Hawaiian Islands, what’s not to like? But I digress …

In Figure 2, you can see how the clouds start building up in the morning. By one in the afternoon, they are knocking the instantaneous solar radiation down to about 700 W/m2 from the morning peak about 1,100 W/m2

Now, that’s interesting in itself … but what is more interesting is what happens after a volcanic eruption. Figure three shows the same data as in Figure 2, with the addition of the maximum and average solar energy during the two-year period after each of the volcanic eruptions.

daily max avg solar mauna loa.png

Figure 3. As in Figure 2, with the addition of the maximum and average solar energy values for the two-year period following the eruptions of El Chichon (orange) and Pinatubo (yellow).

For me, the best part of doing scientific research is when I get surprised by my first view of the data. In this case what was surprising was how very similar the results of the two volcanoes were. Despite the difference of the size and location of the two eruptions, both the maximums and the averages of solar radiation after the two eruptions are very nearly identical … go figure. It makes me think that over a certain point, the stratosphere somehow maxes out and doesn’t cut out any more light.

As expected, the maximum energy making it through the upper atmosphere is significantly lower during the volcanic periods. And the averages were smaller as well. The average downwelling total solar radiation (direct and diffuse) was about 24.5 w/m2 less during the volcanic periods than when there were no volcanos.

So … how did my theory fare? My theory predicts that during the volcanic periods, the clouds would rearrange in order to cut out less sunshine, opposing the effects of the volcanic aerosols.

And in fact, this is exactly what they did.

During the time when there were eruptions, the clouds prevented the period from about 11AM to about 4 PM from decreasing at all … in fact, around 1PM the solar input during the volcanic periods was actually larger than during the non-volcano periods.

If the same percentage of sunlight had been cut out by the clouds during the volcanic periods as when there were no volcanos, instead of an observed loss of 24.5 W/m2, we would have expected a loss of 31.3 W/m2. This means that the rearrangement of the clouds increased downwelling solar radiation by about seven W/m2 …

However, despite the countervailing action of the clouds, there was still a significant loss of radiation, about twenty-five watts per square metre (W/m2). How much is 25 W/m2? The IPCC says that a doubling of CO2 will cause an increase of 3.7 W/m2. So to get the 25 W/m2 change seen during the eruptions, the CO2 would have to go from the current 400 ppmv to 43,250 ppmv …

So what difference did the loss of 25 W/m2 of sunshine make to the local temperatures? Now that’s an interesting question, and one which we can answer. The MLO also has taken temperature readings over that period, so we can compare apples to apples. Here is the result:

mlo temperature anomaly.png

Curious, huh? On average the MLO site received a full 25 W/m2 less solar radiation for an entire two years, and the temperature was unchanged …

I thought, well, maybe I’m reading things wrong. So I went and got some other temperature records from the Hawaiian Islands, because since MLO received less solar energy, all of Hawaii would have received less solar energy … here are the records that cover the times in question. Some don’t cover all of the volcanic periods, but there’s enough data to see if the eruptions actually affected the temperature.

I looked at other Hawaiian Island stations from the nearest to MLO to the furthest. Here’s the nearest station, Hilo, on the same island as MLO. It doesn’t contain the entire El Chichon record, but there’s enough there to see it didn’t cool down during the first year after the eruption. And there was obviously no effect from Pinatubo.

hilo temperature anomaly.png

Next, here’s the record from Molokai, a couple of islands over from MLO … no effect from either eruption on Molokai Temperatures.

molokai temperature anomaly.png

Next, Barber’s point on Oahu … same story. No effect.

barbers temperature anomaly.png

And finally, at the far end of the Hawaiian Island chain from MLO, here’s Lihue, on Kauaii. Like the other stations, Lihue apparently didn’t get the memo about the 25 W/m2 reduction in solar radiation …

lihue temperature anomaly.png

So … why was there no reduction in the temperatures anywhere in the islands from that large a change in forcing? That one is easy to answer …

I don’t know, and I doubt if anyone knows.

After all, in mainstream climate science it is accepted as an article of faith that the reduction in solar energy will and must cause a fall in temperatures … I’m the only person I know of who is heretical enough to seriously question this dogma. See, e.g. my posts called “Volcanic Disruptions” and “Missing The Missing Summer“.

My theory is that the climate system is not like a pool table, where you can calculate from the force applied to the cueball precisely how the other balls will move. Instead of being fixed, the climate system responds to any change in conditions in a number of ways, both seen and unseen. And following both the Constructal Law and Le Chatelier’s Principle, the changes all tend to restore the status quo ante.

But hey, that’s just my explanation why neither Pinatubo nor El Chichon affected Hawaiian temperatures. If someone else has a better idea why a drop in the amount of solar radiation reaching the ground of some 25 W/m2 for two years hasn’t affected the local temperatures, I’m all ears.

[UPDATE] Commenters asked about something I’d considered, whether it was a change in the wind speed that had affected the temperature. It appears that the answer is no.

average daily wind speed mauna loa

The difference between eruptions and no eruptions is well within the uncertainty of the data.


A foggy morning here. We’re six miles from the coast, and despite how far it is, the sea breeze brings me the distant sound of the surf and the foghorn on the breakwater … this is assuredly the most audacious and finest planet I’ve ever lived on.

Best wishes to everyone, my thanks to Richard Keen for setting off this train of thought,

w.

AS ALWAYS: I ask that when you comment, you quote the exact words you are referring to. This lets all of us be crystal clear about just who and what you are talking about. Can’t tell you how tired I am of comments that start with “You are …” when I have no clue who the “You” in the sentence refers to. Makes me want to tell the kids to get off my lawn …

DATA: The Hawaii temperatures are from GISS

The MLO data is available by FTP from here. Big files, because the data is taken every minute.

The MLO meteorological data (temperature, wind, pressure, etc.) is available by FTP from here. There is both minute and hourly data, I used the hourly data for the graph above.

There is also downwelling longwave data there … but unfortunately, it doesn’t start until 1994 … rats …

METHODS: The MLO solar radiation data is in two versions in different years—every three minutes in the early version and every ten minutes more recently. I first converted them all to ten-minute intervals, in part to reduce dataset size.

There are a couple of datasets of interest, the direct solar and the diffuse solar values.

For each month, I calculated the maximum and the average direct solar values for each ten-minute interval. Then, I took the time of the maximum direct solar, and I extracted the diffuse solar for that instant. That gave me the maximum total direct solar, plus the corresponding diffuse solar values.

Once I had the direct and diffuse maximum and average values I divided the datasets into volcano and no volcano sections by removing the data from the date of each eruption and for two years afterward. This let me compare average values for when there were and were not eruptions and their aftermath.

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211 thoughts on “When Eruptions Don’t

  1. Interesting post. I would have expected a clear effect on temperature from major eruptions, and there wasn’t one.

    • Tom Halla:

      On the other hand, Wordfortrees.org plots of average anomalous global temperatures for both GISS and Hadcrut4 clearly show a temperature decrease of about o.2 deg C. for both volcanoes.

      So why not over Hawaiii?

      • Hawaii are islands in a warm ocean. It takes a long time for an ocean to cool of significantly.

      • Burl,
        That’s within the margin of error for the instruments being used, so a 0.2C difference is not significant.

      • Maybe the GISS and HadCRUT models build in the volcanic effect because it seemed logical? I have little doubt the modellers include their beliefs into the models as they program them.

    • ” GISS and Hadcrut4 clearly show a temperature decrease of about o.2 deg C. for both volcanoes”

      It’s basically the noise that gets averaged out over many stations. A variation of, say, 0.2°C is very obvious in the global average, where year-year variations of 0.1°C (as in 2016) stand out. But a single site like Hilo has year-year variations of 1°C or more.

      • “It’s basically the noise that gets averaged out over many stations. A variation of, say, 0.2°C is very obvious in the global average, where year-year variations of 0.1°C (as in 2016) stand out. But a single site like Hilo has year-year variations of 1°C or more.”

        And that’s one reason why averaging data from different stations is a no-no. The result is a complete fantasy.

      • Nick Stokes May 29, 2018 at 11:26 pm

        ” GISS and Hadcrut4 clearly show a temperature decrease of about o.2 deg C. for both volcanoes”

        It’s basically the noise that gets averaged out over many stations. A variation of, say, 0.2°C is very obvious in the global average, where year-year variations of 0.1°C (as in 2016) stand out. But a single site like Hilo has year-year variations of 1°C or more.

        NO THEY DON’T BOTH SHOW A 0.2° DECREASE!! The El Chichon eruption occurred at the bottom of a temperature swing, and the temperature increased steadily after the eruption. Here’s my post from elsewhere in this thread.

        I can’t tell y’all how tired I am of people spouting off about this subject without actually doing their homework. Note also that the temperatures above are adjusted to remove the El Nino variations, so please, no handwaving about El Nino. The global temperature ROSE after El Chichon, and the sooner y’all notice that the less BS you’ll be repeating.

        w.

      • Willis:

        You are correct that the March 28, 1982 El Chichon did not show an 0.2 deg. C. decrease in anomalous global temperatures.

        It actually occurred during the end of the cooling down phase of the April 30, 1981 VEI4 Alaid eruption, and between the two them, there was about an 0.2 deg. C. decrease in temperature, leading to the Sept 1983-Feb. 1984 La Nina, which was ended by the March 1982-July 1983 El Nino, and which in its turn was ended by the May 1982 VEI4 Galunggung .and July 1983 VEI4 Colo eruptions, and their attendant Sept 1984-May 1985 La Nina.. .

      • Willis,
        “NO THEY DON’T BOTH SHOW A 0.2° DECREASE!!”
        I was quoting Burl Henry above; it’s not my claim. I’m just pointing out that if you do see such a change in global indices, you may not be able to distinguish it in the record of a single site.

      • It’s the same thing with the CO2 levels: The apparent effect of Pinatubo is evident in a slowdown in CO2 rise, but the same is not true for El Chichon.

        Mt. Pinatubo was easily the largest volcanic eruption in the last hundred years. Plus, there was one other very large volcanic eruption since 1980: Mt. Hudson, in Chile — just a few months after Mt. Pinatubo (so hardly anyone remembers it).

        I know of two possible explanations for the temporary reduction in the growth rate of atmospheric CO2 which was noticeable over the 2 to 3 years following the Mt. Pinatubo (and Hudson) eruptions:

        1. perhaps because particulates ejected by the eruption cooled the planet, which temporarily increased CO2 absorption by the oceans (because gases like CO2 dissolve more readily in cool water than in warmer water), and/or

        2. perhaps because iron and other minerals in the volcanic ash fertilized the ocean and thereby increased CO2 uptake by ocean biota (Sarmiento, 1993).

  2. Hi Willis, is there any data available about incoming solar energy near the base of Mauna Loa, near sea level?

    If clouds are responding to counter change to incoming solar radiation, the response should be more pronounced at sea level than at Mauna Loa which is above much of the cloud cover.

    For what its worth I think you’ve made the case – the lack of temperature response is a good indication that some feedback is damping the temperature response to change in forcing. But it would be interesting to see how much low level clouds contribute to this response.

      • … lack of data is one of the biggest frustrations of working in climate science.

        That doesn’t seem to stop a lot of “climate scientists”. When you only have a few actual reporting stations in large areas of the globe like the arctic or central Africa, you just make it up (although they call it modeling).

    • Eric,
      The temperature data from Molokai, Oahu, and Kauai are almost certainly at lower elevations than MLO, and they appear (to me) to show lowered temperatures during the El Chichon event;

  3. Willis – great article! Thanks!

    However in the paragraph beginning “However, despite the countervailing…” just above unmarked Fig4, you mention “eclipses” when I guess you actually meant “eruptions”.

  4. Is there a seasonal signal? UK sunshine shows a big change in winter sunshine, not so much in summer.

    Is there a change in wavelength? UV penetrates deeper into ocean.

    • Sunshine, Mauna Loa is at about 19°N, so it’s in the tropics where summer and winter are not that different. As to the wavelengths, I don’t know of any spectrally resolved data. However, I assume that there would be a change in frequency from the presence of the volcanic aerosols.

      w.

  5. Thank you, Mr. E, you have a knack for writing with clarity

    One question came to my mind. The Hawaiian islands are surrounded by warm
    water. Heat spontaneously always flows towards cold. To maintain the “equilibrium” could the ocean have released heat to, perhaps, counter any potential cooling from volcanic aresols.

      • Willis, as we all know, water is much slower to cool than the atmosphere, so it is understandable that Hawaii would not see much change in temperature over just 2 years. The Pacific Ocean is something of a near neighbour to Hawaii, after all.

        Now a site in the central parts of North America, Europe, or Asia would very possibly show a different response in the same time-frame..

      • Thanks, Ray. In fact, the ocean warms and cools by quite a bit, several degrees per month. I just ran the numbers. In the Hawaiian waters, over the course of six months the average surface solar input changes by about 100 W/m2 and the ocean temperature changes by about 16°C … that’s about 4°C for 25W/m2 in six months.

        Given that we had a 25 W/m2 difference that lasted for two years, a clear dip in the ocean temperature greater than 4°C should have occurred.

        w.

      • From winter low to summer high, water temperature off the Hawaiian Islands only varies from 76 to 81 degrees F.

      • Water temperature at the beach and ocean water temperatures are not quite the same thing.

  6. Given your findings that the clarity of the atmosphere is unchanged since 1980 (barring the eruptions) what might be causing Dr Keen’s observations of apparent clearing over time?

      • To clarify, so to speak, the point of my study is that the average aerosols since 1995 are less than the average for the 15 years before, i.e., the stratosphere is overall more clear.
        The quote from the Spaceweather article:
        http://spaceweather.com/archive.php?view=1&day=24&month=05&year=2018
        “Based on the color and brightness of recent eclipses, we can say that Earth’s stratosphere is as clear as it has been in decades. There are very few volcanic aerosols up there”
        does not say it’s *clearer* now than at some times prior to el Chichon and Pinatubo.
        The colorful poster does say:
        “… the global volcanic AOD remains at very low levels. A 22+ year period of a relatively clear stratosphere therefore continues, and is the longest such stretch since 1837- 1862. The stratospheric impacts of several climatically insignificant volcanoes during 1996-2018 are identified. There is no trend in AOD over this period, ruling out volcanoes as a contributor to the stable global temperatures during 1998-2015. Compared to the volcanically active period 1980-1995 (el Chichon and Pinatubo), the clear stratosphere since 1995 has contributed an increase of radiative climate forcing equal to that due to increasing greenhouse gases.”
        There is no contradiction between my eclipse data and the MLO data, and the big thing in both observed data sets is the ongoing 22+ year stretch without major volcanic events.
        So w’s statement that “Other than after the volcanic eruptions, the clarity of the atmosphere is unchanged since 1980” misses the entire point of my article, which is about those volcanic eruptions (and the subsequent lack thereof).

      • Richard Keen May 29, 2018 at 11:31 pm

        To clarify, so to speak, the point of my study is that the average aerosols since 1995 are less than the average for the 15 years before, i.e., the stratosphere is overall more clear.

        Richard, thanks for the comment. Of course the average aerosols are less since 1995 than in the previous 15 years, when El Chichon and Pinatubo erupted.

        In any case, the year 1980, before either El Chichon or Pinatubo, was as clear as the recent years.

        Finally, after both Pinatubo and El Chichon, the stratospheric aerosols were completely gone after a mere two years … so I find it difficult to believe that there was something that lasted for “decades” prior to those much larger eruptions.

        Next, you say:

        The stratospheric impacts of several climatically insignificant volcanoes during 1996-2018 are identified.

        There is absolutely no sign in the MLO record of the eruptions that you identified as having a “stratospheric impact”. Nor is there any sign of them in the UAH MSU Stratospheric Temperature record, which like the MLO record sensitively recorded the El Chichon and Pinatubo eruptions.

        I see nothing but random fluctuations there, nothing of note.

        Best regards,

        w.

      • Mr Eschenbach, I think that there may be a couple of points about whether or not the Volcanoes have an effect.
        Fiirst of all Soufriere appears to have continued a downward trend.
        Whereas Ulawan on it’s own had no effect but when Reventador is added temps dropped.
        Like Soufriere, Rabaul also continued a downward trend.
        Puyene appears to have had no effect whereas Calbuco does.
        So could it be a combination of the “Content” of erupted material, the height that the material gains, the prevailing winds and therefore how quickly and how far the material gets spread?
        I also do not see Eyjafjallajökull on your chart, it certainly affected Europe, but I am not sure about world wide.

      • @A C Osborn:

        You seem to be putting the cart before the horse by claiming that volcanic eruptions “cause” both heating and cooling without advancing empirical data to support the claim that the characteristics of the eruptions might be the root cause. We await your actual analysis with interest.

      • I’m sorry, mate, but I think you must have confused Farenheit when you said Hawaii water cools 16°C.
        No way does it cool that much in winter. Unless it is due to cold fresh water entering in the rainy season at the sight. Temperatures would range from 30-31°C to 21-24°C. People surf in boardshorts all year. There is no cold current in winter.
        Summer is hotter at 19°North than it is ever on the equator. The sun is just about directly overhead for about 50 consecutive days, twice as long as it is when passing over the equator. On the 27th of May the sun is a week away from being overhead. June 3rd it is directly overhead. June 20th it is 4.5° off being overhead. 17 days later it is directly overhead again. A week later it is 2° from being overhead. It is still mid summer.
        Can you see that in the readings? Does that shine light on anything?
        Like you, I don’t know. Maybe Tradewinds off the warm water keeps the air warm. Also, a lot of latent heat gets emitted when the moist surface air gets blown up the mountain into the cold where it condenses. Whatever it is, it is probably local, as a point of where to start looking, because the world did cool due to the volcanoes.

      • w. sez … “Of course the average aerosols are less since 1995 than in the previous 15 years, when El Chichon and Pinatubo erupted.”
        I sez … Of course indeed, that is exactly what my article is about!
        w. sez … “I find it difficult to believe that there was something that lasted for “decades” prior to those much larger eruptions”
        I sez … Where did I say that? Read it again, dude. I said the two big volcanoes – el Chichon and Pinatubo – affected the decadal-scale averages. To which you said “of course”.
        w. sez … “There is absolutely no sign in the MLO record of the eruptions that you identified as having a “stratospheric impact””
        I sez … Did I not say these eruptions were “climatically insignificant” ? What that means is any climate effects, such as stratospheric temperatures, would be in the noise level, and not detectable. I.e., insignificant.
        The “stratospheric impact” of which I speak is in terms of volcanic AOD (Aerosol optical depth), which is, “of course”, the data on the graph. These global values are a bit less noisy than the point MLO observations, and since these insignificant volcanoes are barely out of the noise level of the global eclipse AOD (and arguably for some, within the noise level and therefore not real), they would all be expected to be within the noise level of the MLO numbers – and they are.
        Selectively snippeting sections of what I did say and transforming them into what I didn’t say does not advance the argument, either way. Gads.

  7. Hmm.. I guess I have accepted the dogma that a major eruption is followed by 1 or more cool years. I need to go back and look at those studies again.

    Now I am wondering if Hawaii is insulated from such temperature dips due to the ocean surrounding it, acting as a temperature change buffer – seems reasonable. Or are the temperature dips an artifact of how they calculate the global average? For example, if a volcano impacts a temperature station that is used to fill in a large area, then it the volcano will seem to have a bigger impact than it really does.

    And I am wondering what the satellite data says about the same island over the same time period. This would be very interesting if you have found a divergence in computed satellite measurements versus recorded land data.

    • I would have to agree with the possible buffer item Robert. I would also wonder about the same measurements from other locations performing the same type of measurements as Mauna Loa during that time? Who else does what they do at Mauna Loa for comparison Willis? We surely don’t have all that data coming from just one basket….. I know, get on my mouse and go find it ;-)

    • I wouldn’t be surprised if you are right about the impact of in-filled temperatures that are extrapolated to cover a large area. This is the fundamental reason that all of the earth-based measurements are utter nonsense and the global temperature trends of GISS, HadCRUT, etc. should not be used. Manufacturing data out of thin air is statistical prestidigitation, not science.

      The proper way to measure temperature trends over time is to compare each station to itself to determine a trend then perhaps average all those trends to come up with something approximating a reasonable picture of a global trend. In-filling is chicanery, the whole chicanery, and nothing but chicanery.

      • “The proper way to measure temperature trends over time is to compare each station to itself to determine a trend then perhaps average all those trends to come up with something approximating a reasonable picture of a global trend.”
        Virtually all our knowledge of the world is based on inference from samples. We can only measure finitely many things. Was the US cold in April? We only have a finite number of measures.

        This “proper way” is also sampling. You calculate trends in a finite number of places, and average trends to get a global. No different to averaging temperatures, and would give, as a matter of arithmetic, a fairly similar result.

    • Robert of Texas May 29, 2018 at 7:58 pm

      And I am wondering what the satellite data says about the same island over the same time period. This would be very interesting if you have found a divergence in computed satellite measurements versus recorded land data.

      Well, I suppose I should make this one a them “teachable moments” that the glitterati are always raving about …

      Start by going to the KNMI Climate Explorer. Click on the “Monthly Observations” link under “Select A Field”.

      Then scroll down to the “Lower Troposphere” section and click on the “1979-now: Spencer & Christy” link for Version 6.0.

      When the next page comes up, fill it in like this:

      and click on “Make Time Series”. It will come up with a graph of the requested data from that area. Of course, being me, I figure that’s not good enough. I click on “Raw Data” under the graph, download the data, import it into R, and put it into a more meaningful and hopefully beautiful form as follows:

      No response to the solar change. Zip. Zero.

      w.

      • Really good article. Thanks.
        I just wondered that the Corialis Effect might have kept the air clear over Hawaii.
        Maybe check Southern Hemisphere temperatures during the volcanoes. Maybe only the North cooled, affecting average global temperature.

      • Willis,

        Never underestimate the impact of a “teaching moment”. Somehow I’d never seen the Climate Explorer site before. Not sure how I missed this. It looks much easier than ordering data sets from, for example, GHCN directly.

        Thanks.

        rip

      • ripshin May 30, 2018 at 2:33 pm

        Willis,

        Never underestimate the impact of a “teaching moment”. Somehow I’d never seen the Climate Explorer site before. Not sure how I missed this. It looks much easier than ordering data sets from, for example, GHCN directly.

        Thanks.

        rip

        You’re welcome, rip, that’s why I did it … the KNMI Climate Explorer is a wonderful resource. Inter alia you can indicate a specific geographical area, and then filter it for just land or water … it also gives raw data and anomalies when both are available.

        Take a look at the other sections, it also has daily data, along with IPCC climate model results, and a host of other good stuff.

        w.

    • On ocean buffering – an interesting research project. Not for me, unfortunately, I have not the time to run a filter through my database on good stations that are not where they might be buffered. (It does have lat/long info, but I’d have to figure some kind of rather nasty spatial bounds for the filter).

      I can say, just looking at just one of the definitely unbuffered good stations (Tombstone, AZ) that any effect is definitely overshadowed by other weather patterns. El Chicon shows a -0.71 degree change in the annual mean 1982-1983 – but Pinatubo shows only a -0.05 degree change 1991-1992. (And post-Pinatubo, Tombstone’s annual mean was 2.0 degrees higher in 1993.)

      Oh, before I have to self-reply yet again – those are Fahrenheit. Business school stats class presentation, they would not have grokked Celsius. Although I do remember that I was tempted to use Kelvin at the time, to see if any of them actually were listening…

  8. The atmospheric transmission measurements at Mauna Loa Observatory form the longest data series at this premier site, even longer than the temperature series, which is fragmented in the early years. The measurements are made with an Eppley normal incidence pyrheliometer radiometer mounted on a sun tracker. The first system was installed by Jack Pales in the fall of 1957. Identical Eppleys are still used today. They are mounted on a tracker at the southeast corner of the solar deck. Extracting the atmospheric total transmission is tedious, for absorption by the water vapor column must be accounted for. There are subtle seasonal changes in the data caused mainly by dust and air pollution from Asia. While the stratosphere is currently very clean, there has been a slight reduction in transmission during the past several years. This has been discussed in the literature. The most likely reason is increased emissions from China. I have calibrated dozens of sun photometers and Microtops at MLO each summer for the past 25 years. During this time I have observed, measured and photographed a wide variety of aerosol events. I described the Eppley transmission measurements in “Hawaii’s Mauna Loa Observatory: Fifty Years of Monitoring the Atmosphere (University of Hawaii Press, 2012). I’ve lived at MLO some 229 days and nights. In 2016, NOAA hired me to calibrate the world standard ozone instrument (Dobson 83). This project required living at MLO for 64 days. I’ll be back later this summer to assist in conducting a major UVB survey of Hawaii Island.

  9. And what do the climate models predict in response to volcanic eruptions? Big dips in temperature – mmmm

  10. Not quite sure I understood. Are the maximum just spikes where little extra energy is added to the monthly average? You could then explain the results as patchiness of the cloud cover (then as it is).
    In the maximum plot, it appears, from the change with time, that you are less likely to get a very large spike with a greater path length (is this the case in winter?) and a drop in the average because of fewer spikes. The average also drops as there is more cloud forming at high altitudes as the day progresses. Very patchy though so less of an effect on the magnitude of the largest spike.
    The volcanic aerosols seem to affect the probability of getting a large spike, reducing the chance of a very large one and reducing the number so having an effect on the average. At 12 noon, the lower path length means that the very large spikes are less likely to get through but little reduction in the average, so the overall number getting through is still large. A bigger effect in the mid morning and late afternoon. A postulate (not theory) is that what seeds cloud formation differs a lot on patchiness depending on the mechanism.
    Really need to see the data spit into seasons, especially comparing months of mid winter with those around the spring equinox (or 60 days centred around it).
    After another 2000-3000 m of cloudy atmosphere, these spikes from clearer sky above are lost in the extra cloudiness but it would be interesting to see the if there is an effect on mid morning and late afternoon temperatures rather than mean of maximum and minimum. This could have a bigger effect on agriculture than the “climate” (mean of min and max).

  11. “quod erat demonstrandum” on the the climate temperature ‘governor’ Willis! Something like this fine article gives a sad demonstration of the lazy linear thinking of the mainstream consensus ‘science’.

    I recall you raising a similar point regarding the increase in solar insolation between the apogee and perigee of the earths orbit. The difference is greater than that from the 11yr solar cycle maxima and minima and yet the temperature record does to respond.

    I would say you have the makings of an article here that would strike the consensus dumb. If the earth can resist temperature increases with increased insolation, why not with increased CO2.

  12. Willis you said

    “There is also downwelling longwave data there … but unfortunately, it doesn’t start until 1994”

    It would be interesting to know how that downwelling longwave data looks like. Any trend?

  13. If daytime max incoming energy is reduced due to particulates I would think nighttime outgoing energy could also be reduced. This might lower the Max/Min temperature gap without showing much of a change in daily average since the highs might not be as high nor the lows as low. Might be too small to tease out of the Max/Min temperatures though due to variance caused by other natural processes.

  14. @Willis- I was wondering about the land station measurements of insulation last week. So your article is very timely and I appreciate it.

    You said- So … why was there no reduction in the temperatures anywhere in the islands from that large a change in forcing?

    I would claim while waving my hands wildly that the loss of solar forcing was sucked out of the ocean to make up for the difference.

    This is the document i found looking for ground Station solar insolation. It looks like one chart shows a cooling trend from 2000 of about 10 watts per meter squared per decade. So after this Micro Ice Age We may just keep stair stepping down for the next four thousand years. Stay tuned.

    from satellite and ground measurements: Comparisons and challenges

    Laura M. Hinkelman Paul W. Stackhouse Jr. Bruce A. Wielicki Taiping Zhang Sara R. Wilson
    First published: 15 August 2009

    https://doi.org/10.1029/2008JD011004

    Sandy minister of future

  15. Interesting data and a surprising result from your analyses, Willis!

    The largest Pinatubo eruption was coincident with Typhoon Yunya, the center of which passed about 47 miles north of the mountain. My conjecture is the heavy rains and winds associated with the typhoon ‘knocked down’ the height of the eruption plume through direct winds shear effects as well as rain transport of significant amounts of fine particulates and sulfur compounds to the ground/ocean. This reduced the impacts on high atmospheric transparency, making the net results closer to those of the El Chichon eruption.

    I’m a bit puzzled why the Mount St. Helens eruption in May 1980 do not show in the MLO data??!

      • And to boot, MSH had low-sulfur magma, while Pinatubo – and especially el Chichon – were high sulfur.

      • “And to boot, MSH had low-sulfur magma, while Pinatubo – and especially el Chichon – were high sulfur.”

        Answer to Willis’s question of why the 2 different volcanoes had similar effect even though they were different in magnitude?

      • Several reasons – el Chichon was higher sulfur than Pinatubo, and much higher than MSH; Mauna Loa is a point observations, and Pinatubo was relatively bigger than el Chichon; and a thing called the QBO. That’s the Quasi-biennial Oscillation in the stratosphere, occurring over cycles of 2 years or so, that affects whether the air in the tropical stratosphere is generally rising or sinking. After el Chichon the air was rising, helping the sulfurous aerosols stay aloft longer, while after Pinatubo the air was sinking, so the aerosols cleared out a bit more quickly (but with more to start with).
        Than there’s latitude – Pinatubo was nearly equatorial, and spread to both hemispheres more quickly; el Chichon at a slightly higher latitude and it covered the Northern Hemisphere first, then spread south.
        And geologically (crater size, volume of ash), Pinatubo was maybe 10 times larger than el Chichon.

  16. Are there wind speed/direction records matching your data Willis? Low and High Pressure systems moving heat around to stabilise?
    Like going down a rabbit warren when you start to contemplate all the different inputs to the system.
    Plus the erratics, volcanoes, earthquakes, meteors.
    Can you put this into your thunderstorms to show the results over time?
    Warren in New Zealand

  17. The State of Hawaii’s Kilauea has been in an eruption phase since 1983. At times VOG has covered the entire state. The big island gets dosed with most of it. One would think that air would affect the instruments atop Mauna Kea…

  18. Question…isn’t direct solar irradiance including visible wavelengths that don’t cause heating? Meaning, the irradiance drops due to light reflection back in to space, but that drop in irradiance isn’t ALL energy that warms the earth…

    If only some fraction of total direct solar irradiance causes heating, then only the reduction in that fraction would have a cloud feedback effect. What is that fraction, and what is the reduction in that fraction? I don’t know, but gosh wouldn’t if be interesting to find out that the aerosols from the volcano eruptions only reduce heating irradiance by about the same amount your cloud cover decreased…

    I guess the missing down selling infrared info would have answered that?

    Thanks,
    Roland

    • Roland:

      I’m afraid you are operating under a fundamental misconception — concerning “visible wavelengths that don’t cause heating”. If the radiation, of whatever wavelength, is absorbed, it increases the energy of the absorbing body. Almost always, it is increasing the thermal energy of the body — a.k.a. “heating” it. (A very small percentage of some visible wavelengths can increase the chemical energy of the object if it can photosynthesize.)

      Remember that visible-light lasers can melt steel. They have to be able to heat the steel to do that.

      • Correct, however, as I expanded on in an later comment, earth preferentially absorbs more in the red side and less in the blue/green side because of visible light reflected back in to space (oceans and forests visible from space).

        The spectrum of the sun also peaks in the blue/green visible range, so that portion is fundamentally capped by the albedo of the the forests and ocean…Blue/green light also has a higher frequency than red/Infrared, therefore higher energy, but yet cannot impart as much of that energy per photon on Earth, simply feom the preferential reflection back in o space of those wave length.

        Additionally, higher frequency visible light and UV just isn’t as effecient at converting electromagnetic energy in to heat. But yet they have an outsized representation in the solar irradiance values.

        To simply my thinking, imagine an object. Being hit with red light and blue light such that the total irradiance it gets is 200 w/m^2, 180 from blue, 20 from red. It reflects 50% of blue, absorbs 100% of red. It’s albedo is 110/180 or about 0.6. then you turn off the blue light. Irradiance just dropped my 90%, but the heat transferred to that object. Won’t change much, it was already reflecting 50% of that light, and blue isn’t as efficient at transferring heat.

        Thanks,
        Roland

      • Ah, your point is a little clearer now. But the satellites measure the total values of incoming and outgoing (reflected) solar radiation integrated over the full spectrum. So even if blue/green light is preferentially reflected, that is accounted for in the commonly quoted values (~342 W/m2 incoming, ~102 W/m2 outgoing, averaged over surface and time).

        I’m mystified by your assertion that “higher frequency visible light and UV just isn’t as effecient at converting electromagnetic energy in to heat.” Electromagnetic radiation of any frequency is very easy to turn into heat. What do you think happens to the energy in these wavelengths when it is absorbed?

      • I’m sure there is research out there somewhere, but infrared wavelengths are more effective at mechanically stimulating heating of materials because they cause excitation in a distance that exited their neighboring atoms. I would assume that other atomic forces are what attenuate higher frequencies.

        I can’t find references for why other wavelengths heat less, or what happenens to the energy, but I can find lots of references as to why infrared converts to heat with high efficiency. Maybe you can find that info? Really would appreciate that, because it seems obvious that if infrared is reported as efficient, other wavelengths are therefore less efficient.

        Thanks,
        Roland

      • Roland:

        In a lot of substances, the depth to which radiation penetrates before being absorbed varies significantly with wavelength. For most substances that are opaque to visible light, longer wavelength IR penetrates significantly deeper.

        This is why the warming lamps in restaurants put out a significantly longer-wavelength spectrum than lamps we use for illumination. Their radiation penetrates deeper into the food to be kept warm. They are only more “efficient” in the sense that they don’t just heat the thin surface layer, which heat is quickly lost to the atmosphere.

        My heat transfer professor in college had a neat demonstration of varying the spectrum. You could feel the difference in penetration into your body.

        None of this is directly relevant to the issue at hand.

      • You are correct, I was confusing in my mind “surface heating” with actual heating throughout….blue light does indeed heat just as much, but actually reverse of the way you described – blue penetrates deeper, and therefore is slower to heat the whole system (is why blue penetrates deeper in the ocean). But that was all a bit of a sidetrack on my original point….

        My point was, that I suspect the aerosols released by volcanic activity DO block some portion of total solar irradiance, but that the portion that it blocks also happens to be largely the portion that does not heat the earth as efficiently because of the albedo spectrum.

        Even though the oceans only have an albedo of 0.06 or so, it still reflects enough blue light for us to shine blue in our solar system. Since blue light has a higher energy than green/yellow/red, that small portion of the spectrum being blocked would have a more noticible effect on totally solar irradiance coming in, but less of an effect on the actual heating of the earth.

        Willis did NOT include albedo in his comparison of cloud cover effects v/s total incoming irradiance, NOR did he include this spectral difference in his comparison. I personally believe he is 100% right that weather is a self regulating component keeping our climate stable. I am simply pointing out why I think his results do not add up as he expected, and am suggesting data that can be checked, if it exists somewhere, to improve on his results.

        Thanks,
        Roland

  19. Since becoming enlightened just over a year ago (i.e no longer buys the ‘it’s all because of us’ dogma) I’ve developed a keen interest in Climate Change & whilst I do not yet have sufficient knowledge to offer an opinion on your findings, I want to thank you for having written it in such a readily understandable way that lay-people like me can continue to broaden our knowledge and think for ourselves

    • Thanks, Clare. My objective is exactly that—I envision my target audience as the “interested layperson”, someone who is fascinated by the world but may not have extensive scientific knowledge.

      Best regards,

      w.

  20. i wonder if the answer doesn’t lie in wind speeds. If the sun light increases in the islands, the ensuing warmth would create lower pressure which would in turn make for stronger walker cell trade winds (and visa versa). Walker trades follow the sun and, as such don’t kick up until the late morning/ noon hours. It would be interesting to see a comparison of temperatures in the islands as they evolve throughout the day. That might be the clue to the answer to the question at hand. (iow, book ’em Dano!… ☺) Looking at figure #3, it sure seems plausible. The greatest difference in solar radiation occurs during those morning hours when skies are clear and winds are calm. Keep in mind that those trade winds blow from east to west which means they are moving cooler air in the east to the west…

    • Fonz, I’ve wondered about the wind as well. A reduction in wind speed could be involved. Fortunately, I have the data, and it was next on my to-do list … well, after I fire up the weedwhacker and cut the grass on the lower acre. I’ll report back on the wind question when I can get to it.

      w.

      • Well, my curiosity got the best of me. I’ve added this to the head post.

        [UPDATE] Commenters asked about something I’d considered, whether it was the changes in the wind speed that had affected the temperature. It appears that the answer is no.

        The difference between eruptions and no eruptions is well within the uncertainty of the data.

        Regards,

        w.

      • Willis, hard to say how much walker trades affect wind speeds at 10,000+ feet. If they are mostly a surface phenomonon, then the data to look at would be winds at the surface. Most folks don’t realize that walker trades are not constant (like hadley trades), but only kick up in the hours around mid day, thus following the sun. And when they do, they’re rather strong. A difference might show up in those much higher wind speeds at the surface than high atop MLO (which may or may not see any effect from walker trades at all)…

        Sorry, if my comments seem a little half baked here. i used to live on the kehei coast of maui and always like wading into the conversation when the pacific region comes up (even though i don’t know my backside from a cinder cone when talking about it… ☺)

  21. Willis,

    You are missing one key point: Both El Chichon and Pinatubo eruptions happened during strong El Nino. Thus, if you are assessing the effect of these volcanic eruptions, you need to consider the effect of simultaneous El Nino.

  22. Any science advisor to a President’s committee on climate change needs to read this. Remember how Obama’s Science Czar Holdren wanted to pump sulfur into the atmosphere to prevent warming? Doesn’t look like it’s going to work. It would be wasted tax dollars for sure.

  23. Interesting article as always, Mr E – many thanks for your endless curiosity. By the way, what is the humidity like at MLO? Its in the tropics, but at that elevation is there the same or less humidity than at sea level? Could the curious ‘no change’ effect be related at all?

  24. Interesting results indeed.
    It more or less confirms my suspicion that the amount of heat coming from the belly of our earth might be underestimated by all climatologists… You do not need a fancy GH theory to ‘make’ earth warmer. It is getting warmth enough from itself.
    However, we have to consider the fact that this is Hawaii, which is of course notoriously volcanic and might vent more a lot more heat than other places less volcanic. So, I am saying the result could be a bit biased.
    Do we have a similar observatory somewhere else?
    (I will check here in South Africa)

    • I’ve been impressed by the photos of the recent eruption and tried really basic calculations to see how much heat would have been emitted building Hawaii. I got around 400W continuously over the past million years but spread over the entire area of the island which I cheated and used 40 x 40km I think. Anyway, it was a fantastically trivial amount of heat compared to solar irradiance which just seems wrong, but I’ve found that before trying to work out the heat contribution from sea-floor spreading ridges. But of course volcanoes are nothing if not cyclical so averages over a million years may smooth things too much…
      But if geothermal heat contributions to Earth energy budget are off (or cyclical), I’d be looking in places like Greenland and Antarctica because there you can have some big changes with relatively small amounts of heat as you melt a lot of ice.

      Any temperate snow covered mountain ranges could get a big albedo shift too I suppose.

      I have always felt the dip in temps for the Pinatubo eruption was a bit of a trite explanation, sooner or later though, we’ll get another high altitude tropical eruption and this time we will all be watching the temp. Sucks to leave near them though.

      • Dixon
        I have also been looking at this eruption on Hawaii and I realized that this process is going on continuously in the Pacific- and Atlantic Rim at the bottom of the oceans. I am sure this produces a lot of H2O (g)?
        So, there is your answer why in the past many scientists thought that there must be a ‘GH’ effect.
        Even though I looked everywhere, I could not find any report giving me a balance sheet,
        i.e.
        how much energy is trapped (mainly by clouds) versus how much energy is deflected off from earth (mainly by clouds)
        So, what I am saying is that probably far too much energy is apportioned to the GH effect. Basically, there is no GH effect. My results show there is no manmade global warming.

    • Henry — You say: “It more or less confirms my suspicion that the amount of heat coming from the belly of our earth might be underestimated by all climatologists…”

      The amount of heat coming from the earth’s “belly” is well understood. Over the vast majority of the earth, it amounts to about 0.07 W/m2. Some scientists believe that it might be as large as 0.08 W/m2. For a very tiny fraction of the earth’s surface, it is much greater than this (volcanoes, hot spots, etc.), but because this area is so small, it makes little difference to the overall average. This is probably still below 0.1 W/m2.

      This tiny flux does not come close to explaining the “gap” between the 240 W/m2 the earth and its atmosphere absorb from the sun, and the ~500 W/m2 output from the earth’s surface. Only the GHE can close this gap.

      • Ed

        You claim it is only 0.1 W/m2.
        You say this is well understood. I know for a fact that most of the volcanic action is in the middle of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. That it is probably why the oceans are where they are.
        So how did you measure the increase in the T of the ocean water by the hot molten lava?
        (The eruptions you see now on Iceland and Hawaii is only a tiny fraction of the action that goes on underneath the sea beds). This is where all the salt in the oceans have come from…..
        When I investigated this I also found that nothing has actually been measured. It is absurd. It is the same with the CO2 nonsense. They never measured anything. They took the warming from 1750 and subtracted anything that they thought was not man made and said this is the forcing from CO2…..
        That is putting the horse behind the cart. Is the worst kind of mistake a scientist can make: to take a result [of what you have observed] and try to work your way back to find an answer for the original question.
        I say again: You cannot ‘calculate’ that which has never been measured. You must first measure.
        I have measured at 10 or 11 weather stations looking at all daily data for the past 40 years and I find it is cooling here in South Africa.
        To explain this [mainly to myself] I have come up with a theory that earth’s inner core is moving [as confirmed by the movement of the magnetic north pole]. North east, to be exact. And quite fast, in the past 100 years, compared to the previous century. This is to explain the melting of ice in the arctic and the cooling I observed here in South Africa, simultaneously.
        I also looked a global minimum temperatures and find that it already started globally cooling.
        Everything looks normal, i.e. following a particular quadratic related to certain sine waves.
        If you are interested you can read my final report here:
        http://breadonthewater.co.za/2018/05/04/which-way-will-the-wind-be-blowing-genesis-41-vs-27/
        So, sorry, no, going by my results, there does not appear to be a greenhouse effect. Tyndall and Arrhenius were simply wrong because they looked only at experiments in closed boxes. But that is not how the atmosphere works….

      • You say this is well understood. I know for a fact that most of the volcanic action is in the middle of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. That it is probably why the oceans are where they are.

        Going to disagree with you there: The “Ring of Fire” is around the Pacific Ocean; and there are only a limited number of volcano hot-spots across the center of the Pacific – an area almost 1/2 the entire earth. (Hawaii obviously is one hot spot – forming its trail of islands as the crust moved over the hot spot.) the rest of the Pacific volcanic islands are above the edges of the crustal subduction zones. Med? Similar. The rift zones are the dividing lines of new crust being created as the middle of the rift expands.

        Yes, through the mid-Atlantic, the rift extends all the way past Africa where it joins the Indian Ocean. But your general statement is not correct.

      • Well said HenryP.
        Scientists just do not know and therefore guess based on the little they do know where volcanic activity is concerned.
        A good example of this is where it is deemed common knowledge (consensus?) that the earth has 70% of its area as water. However if you look at a tree, count the leaves, guess the area of each, multiply by the number of trees on earth and then do the same for all plants, then you obtain an atmospheric/water interface probably many times the area of the Earth itself.
        Similarly the tectonic movements are extremely energy intensive and have a huge impact on the climate all driven by the core energy beneath our feet. It may not manifest itself in radiation; but it is still energy.
        Meanwhile hotspots, ocean rifts and ocean volcanic activity, quite apart from what we experience on the continents are all busy mucking about with local environments such as; dare I suggest El Niño, puzzling local antarctic ice sheet melting, arctic ice levels etc.?
        All desperately trying to be explained by the dreaded viral CO2 Meme which has so addled the brains of so many very intelligent people.

        Beware scientists bearing gifts wrapped in consensus.

      • cognog2
        thanks.
        true, We cannot have an election about science. If it wasn’t for a few people like Isaac newton and albert Einstein, where would we be today?

      • Henry:

        Let’s say that 1/10 of 1% of the earth’s surface is emitting 1000 W/m2 from the interior. (This is an incredibly generous estimate of the area.) Then we would calculate the overall average as:

        Average = 0.999*0.07 + 0.001*1000 = 1.07 W/m2

        This does not come close to explaining how the earth’s surface emits > 200 W/m2 more than the earth and its atmosphere absorb from the sun.

      • Henry:

        A good scientist always performs ballpark sanity-check calculations before delving into detailed investigation. I learned this very early from both my scientist father and my science teachers.

        The 0.07 W/m2 figure over the vast majority of the earth’s surface is from actual measurements — from thousands and thousands of boreholes.

        Let’s be INCREDIBLY generous and say that 250,000 km of mid-ocean ridges (over 3 times the circumference of the earth) a full kilometer wide is emitting 1000 W/m2 from below. And further, another 250,000 km2 (500km x 500km) elsewhere in volcanoes and hotspots, etc. are emitting the same.

        The full area of the earth is over 500 million km2. So this total area is 0.1% of the earth’s, and this does not get you over 1 W/m2 averaged over the full earth’s surface. At a ridiculous 10,000 W/m2, you do not get over 10 W/m2.

        Your theory must explain 250 W/m2 difference between surface output and solar input. Even on the most ridiculous assumptions, you are short by multiple orders of magnitude. You really must learn to perform these types of calculations.

      • ED

        Let me ask you the same question as I asked everyone else before.
        I am not denying that some warming effect exists from water vapour and clouds (ca. 0.5% of the atmosphere). I notice,for example, that minimum T here rises in a night when clouds move in, indicating some kind of back radiation of radiation from earthshine.
        However, during the next (cloudy) day, I also notice that Tmaxium goes down, by as much as 5K or even more. This indicates back radiation of sunshine to space. Radiation can only move in straight lines. It is the same with pure water vapor (no clouds). I have done an experiment with a plate and noticed the heat on the plate going down as the RH rises, all else being equal. (CO2 is like water vapor with absorption in the area where the sun emits and therefore also cools the atmosphere). Some of this radiation actually bounces against the moon and we can actually measure it coming back to us via the moon, provided our instruments are strong enough. Amazing.
        http://w.astro.berkeley.edu/~kalas/disksite/library/turnbull06a.pdf
        Note fig. 6 bottom and see how it all comes back to us via the moon in fig 7.
        But here is my question: which effect is more: the warming caused by the clouds (re-radiating earthshine) or the cooling by the clouds (re-radiating sunshine)? How was the experiment to measure this?
        You must answer the question, even if just a simple “I don’t know” as otherwise the discussion probably ends.

      • Ed Bo May 30, 2018 at 9:33 pm

        This tiny flux does not come close to explaining the “gap” between the 240 W/m2 the earth and its atmosphere absorb from the sun, and the ~500 W/m2 output from the earth’s surface. Only the GHE can close this gap.

        Again this faulty way of thinking as displayed so many times on this site. There is a fundamental difference between energy FLUX and heat content. Although the geothermal flux is indeed small (~100 mW/m^2 for oceanic crust) almost the entire heat content of planet Earth has a geothermal origin. The sun only slightly increases the temperature of the upper 10-20 m of the continents and the upper 200-300 m of the oceans.
        So 99,99999……% of Earths heat content is geothermal energy (unless you believe that the almighty CO2 molecule has heated Earhts interior and the deep oceans)

        How much the surface radiates is irrelevant because almost all that energy is captured by the atmosphere (exception the direct radiation through the atmospheric window). As long as the total energy loss at the TOP OF THE ATMOSPHERE equals the solar input our energy budget balances. This is true whatever the surface temperature. (stabilized situation obviously).

      • Ben,
        many thanks for your support. like you said, we have to get rid of this old thinking, mainly about ‘calculating’ (Fortran, etc. ) that which has never ben measured.
        I lost that graph of yours showing how much T rises when going underground. Or rather, I forgot to save it some place on my computer. I was in between computers as I recently got a new computer.
        Could you perhaps show that again?

      • Ben:

        What you call “this faulty way of thinking” is PRECISELY the “way of thinking” one is taught at the beginning of any introductory thermodynamics course.

        For any “control mass”, the change in energy over any time interval is equal to the total energy inflows minus the total energy outflows in that interval. For an infinitesimal time interval, we get that the rate of change of the energy of the system is equal to the total power inputs minus the total power outputs. This is a direct manifestation of the 1st Law conservation of energy, the same as you balancing your checkbook due to “conservation of money”.

        Taking the earth and its atmosphere together as our “control mass”, we have a total power input of ~240 [W/m2] * Aearth [m2] absorbed from the sun’s radiation and ~240 [W/m2] * Aearth [m2] infrared radiation output to space. Even climate alarmists don’t think this is out of balance by more than 1 W/m2, and you don’t, and I don’t.

        But now let’s take the earth itself as our “control mass”. It cannot be absorbing more than 240 [W/m2] * Aearth [m2] from the sun, either directly, or indirectly from what the atmosphere absorbs. But we have good measurements that it is outputting about 500 [W/m2] * Aearth [m2] through radiation, conduction/convection, and evaporation. So that’s an imbalance of ~260 [W/m2] * Aearth.

        But again, even at the surface level, even climate alarmists don’t think this is out of balance by more than 1 W/m2. Skeptics think it is closer to 0 W/m2. So what would bring the numbers back into balance?

        Henry thinks it could be geothermal energy from within. So let’s examine that. Let’s now take the top 100 meters (the exact thickness is not important) of the solid earth (a thin “shell”) as our control mass. From the outside, the shell is absorbing no more than 240 * Aearth and outputting ~500 * Aearth. From the bottom, you and I agree that it is absorbing about 0.1 * Aearth. Even if we are underestimating this by a factor of 10 or even 100 (and we are not!), it doesn’t come close to bringing the surface layer into balance.

        And it DOES NOT MATTER that the thermal capacitance of the earth’s interior is huge compared to that of the surface layer. If that huge capacitance cannot create a significant power flux transfer to the surface layer, it is irrelevant.

        Going back to the money analogy, you may have a filthy rich uncle, but if he only gives you $0.10 a week, his input is fundamentally irrelavant to your checking account balance.

        People learn this in the opening weeks of their first thermodynamics course. Have you ever taken one?

      • Henry:

        So suddenly you change the subject from geothermal flux to clouds, and I MUST answer the question?!? All right, I’ll play…

        Measurements show that the shortwave solar radiation that clouds reflect back to space, thereby providing a “cooling” effect, is greater than the “warming” effect they provide by absorbing longwave radiation from below and radiating back down.

        Calculations from these measurements usually put the net cooling effect, averaged over the earth’s surface, at about 20 W/m2.

        So yes, cloudy nights tend to be warmer, and cloud days cooler, than clear ones.

        It’s important to keep in mind that this by itself says nothing about how cloud cover varies with temperature.

      • Ed
        I am not sure where those measurements came from and how it was done and even if they are correct but you confirm my suspicion that the cooling effect of the water vapor/clouds is greater than the warming effect. If we take away the clouds/ water vapor I am not sure what remains of a GH effect that traps all of your 200 w/m2???

      • Henry:

        You are completely confusing water vapor (a gas) and clouds (liquid water suspension). They have VERY different radiative properties, which you are getting totally mixed up.

        Clouds have very high reflectivity of shortwave (solar) radiation; water vapor has virtually none. This high reflectivity of solar radiation back to space by clouds is THE reason clouds have a net cooling effect — this is not the case AT ALL for water vapor.

        Clouds have almost total absorptivity of longwave (surface IR) radiation; water vapor has moderately high absorptivity. This is why it cools off more slowly on cloudy nights than clear nights, and more slowly on clear humid nights than clear low-humidity nights.

        Unlike clouds, water vapor provides no radiative effect that tends to cool the earth.

        You ask about the borehole measurements I mentioned. It’s very simple in principle. Temperature is measured at many depths along the hole. From this is derived the temperature gradient (not necessarily constant along the hole, but usually close) by simple subtraction, in K/m (Kelvin/meter). This value is multiplied by the conductivity of the rock at that point in the borehole, in W/m/K to get the power flux density in W/m2.

        The values thus obtained are virtually always around 0.07 W/m2. You can quibble about the details and say they should be closer to 0.08, but they are too low by a factor of ~3000 to close the “power gap” at the surface.

      • now you say
        Clouds have very high reflectivity of shortwave (solar) radiation; water vapor has virtually none. This high reflectivity of solar radiation back to space by clouds is THE reason clouds have a net cooling effect — this is not the case AT ALL for water vapor.

        Ed,
        this is not at all correct. Have you looked at the spectra of liquid water and water vapor?
        Water vapor also deflects, in the sun’s spectrum. Hence my finding that with increasing RH there is a decrease in Tmax, all else being equal.
        I can also apply same result to the CO2 as it has also strong absorptions in the sun’s emission spectrum. Hence we can see the sunrays being deflected by the CO2 coming back to us via the moon.

        So, now, seeing that you already have ‘done’ the clouds experiment, to prove that the net effect of more H2O (g) and CO2 is that of warming rather than cooling,
        what experiment have you done?

        (hint: the closed box experiments won’t work)

      • henryp et al:

        This bit of the thread is interesting.; but suspect something is missing in that the radiation processes only are being considered and in a static situation. Say a particular layer of the atmosphere.
        However this is not the case as there is a strong physical movement taking place due to water vapour (gas) being lighter than air. This results in large energies being transferred upwards for dissipation potentially into space, albeit that the radiation equation could well be nibbling away at this energy on the way up.
        Overall the combination of this determines how much of the Latent Heat gets dissipated into the atmosphere and how much into space; but ensures that water reacts strongly to reduce any effects due to increase in inSOLation or whatever.
        The physics of the resulting equilibrium temperature is simple in that it is determined by the interaction between gravity and the vapour pressure *characteristic of water, both of which are more or less constant. *(The characteristic of this being the temperature at which phase change commences at a particular pressure. Evidence of this being in the fact that a kettle always boils at sea level at 100C. A specific point in the lapse rate trace.)

      • Henry:

        I’m afraid you’re still completely confused. Gaseous H2O and CO2 have some absorption bands in the solar spectrum (not nearly as strong as in the longwave IR spectrum), but they have virtually no reflectivity. If you don’t understand the difference between absorption and reflection, you cannot even get started in a proper analysis.

        You state that “with increasing RH there is a decrease in Tmax, all else being equal”, but you don’t understand the reason. In a location where there is surface water available in the ground and vegetation, a substantial fraction of the sun’s radiative energy goes into evaporating water. Where there is not this water available, as in deserts, virtually all of the sun’s power goes into increasing the temperature of the surface, which quickly increases the temperature of the surface air.

        On a sunny day, go to a local park where they have both grass and artificial turf fields. On the grass fields, where there is a lot of evaporation occurring, things are significantly cooler than on the same-color turf fields, where there is no evaporation.

        At common H2O and CO2 concentrations, many LWIR bands are completely absorbed within a meter or two of travel, as can easily be demonstrated in the lab. They have no comparable absorption bands of anywhere near this strength in the solar spectrum.

      • So. Ed.
        You have not presented me with a result of an experiment showing me exactly how much earthshine is trapped and how much sunshine is deflected by each GHG. Do you understand now why I think that IF ANY the net effect of more CO2 is rather more cooling than more warming?

      • HenryP May 31, 2018 at 7:51 pm

        I lost that graph of yours showing how much T rises when going underground. Or rather, I forgot to save it some place on my computer. I was in between computers as I recently got a new computer.
        Could you perhaps show that again?

        This one?

      • HenryP May 31, 2018 at 5:13 am

        You claim it is only 0.1 W/m2.
        You say this is well understood. I know for a fact that most of the volcanic action is in the middle of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. That it is probably why the oceans are where they are.

        I made some calculations for these situations.
        We have some 50.000 km spreading ridges, moving ~2cm apart every year. Results in 5-10 km^3 magma each year. Takes about 200.000 years to increase the temperature of ALL ocean water 1K.
        The 100 mW/m^2 geothermal flux takes just 5000 years to do the same.
        Reason the oceans have been cooling is the sinking of cold, dense water near the poles, while the Thermohaline Circulation transports the accumulated geothermal energy to the poles, to be released to the atmosphere (and space). Apparently the cooling is slightly higher than the warming effect of all geothermal combined.

      • Henry:

        You say: “CO2 has big absorption between 4 and 5 UM.”

        There is essentially no solar radiation in that wavelength band. You just keep revealing that you don’t understand any of this stuff.

        You say: “what you refer to [with the comparison between natural grass and artificial turf fields] is to do with Tmean. Not Tmax.”

        No, by comparing the effects of daytime sunlight on these two types of fields, I am clearly talking about Tmax. Anyone with a basic grasp of the scientific principles involved would understand that. You obviously don’t.

        You ask: “How about you explain the big gaps in the solar spectrum caused by the H2O and CO2?”

        I already did upthread when I said: “Gaseous H2O and CO2 have some absorption bands in the solar spectrum (not nearly as strong as in the longwave IR spectrum)”. Again, you don’t understand the topic well enough to catch that.

        The diagram you link shows the solar spectrum above the atmosphere and at the surface. There is about 10km of atmosphere in between. Even weak absorption bands can absorb a lot over that distance. But as I said earlier: “At common H2O and CO2 concentrations, many LWIR bands are completely absorbed within a meter or two of travel.”

        You say: “You cannot test this in a lab.”

        Of course you can! It’s not at all difficult to set up travel of a few meters in a lab and use devices like spectroradiometers to measure particular wavelength power under different concentrations.

        For longer distances, the US Air Force has spent tens of millions of dollars over decades measuring the absorption over the spectrum up in the atmosphere at various concentrations of these gases. This work was to ensure the effectiveness of their heat-seeking missiles. The MODTRAN and HITRAN databases of absorption/emission bands come out of this experimental work.

        You ask: “Do you understand now why I think that IF ANY the net effect of more CO2 is rather more cooling than more warming?”

        Yes, I understand. It is because of your total confusion. If the atmosphere were MORE absorptive of the shortwave solar spectrum than the longwave earth spectrum, you would have an argument. But because the atmosphere is substantially LESS absorptive of SW than LW, it provides a net warming effect.

        You desperately need to spend a few years studying the underlying concepts so you have an intellectual context that you can fit your reading into. Until then, you are just confusing yourself and others.

      • Ed
        The sun emits 0-5 um and I have already proved to you that we can pick up the deflection caused by the CO2 1-2 um via the moon. I used to measure the CO2 in N2 with FTIR at 4600 A so I know about the big absorption of CO2 between 4-5 um. Apart from that we have also discovered absorptions of the CO2 in the UV which is how we currently can identify and measure it on other planets.
        Now, true enough, there is big absorption of 14-15 um causing some back radiation of earthshine. At this stage it seems to me that the people that have given you your education have forgotten to tell you an important detail.
        The sun is emitting at 5600K and earth is emitting at how much K? 285K?
        How many factors down is that?
        So,
        it is exactly like I said. If there is ANY effect, the addition of more CO2 is more likely that of cooling rather than warming.
        But, heh, that it is just my opinion. End of discussion.

  25. … and to continue;

    1982-1983 El Nino and 1991-1992 El Nino should have cause a similar upward peak in world temperatures as 1998 El Nino did. But instead, there was a small downward pit in the temperature record. If we assess this, the effect of these eruptions was at least 0.6-0.9 Celsius on temperature records.

    • And for Hawaii …
      “Hawaii tends to be drier than normal during the November-May period of a moderate to strong El Niño. Hawaii also tends to be warmer than normal during the October-March period in the year following such an episode.”
      https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sites/default/files/attachments/Pacific-Region-El-Niño-Impacts-and-Outlooks-Hawaii-2015.pdf
      So el Nino pumps up the Pacific Hadley circulation, strengthening the subtropical high, making Hawaii warmer, drier, and SUNNIER. So the compensating decrease in cloudiness that mitigates the volcanic reduction in solar radiation may be due to el Nino, in these two cases.
      Extracting truth from a sample of two can be tricky.

    • MAK May 29, 2018 at 11:42 pm

      … and to continue;

      1982-1983 El Nino and 1991-1992 El Nino should have cause a similar upward peak in world temperatures as 1998 El Nino did. But instead, there was a small downward pit in the temperature record. If we assess this, the effect of these eruptions was at least 0.6-0.9 Celsius on temperature records.

      I’ve shown in this thread a couple of views of the El Chichon eruption temperature data AFTER accounting for el nino. There was NO depression of even the UAH MSU lower troposphere temperature.

      w.

    • MAK, that is a study of climate models, not a study of the real world … and climate models are notorious for not doing well at modeling El Nino episodes. Sorry, but garbage in, garbage out …

      w.

  26. Willis
    The link provides comment on why ozone congregates at the poles. Thickness of the stratosphere etc.
    http://www.arctic.uoguelph.ca/cpe/environments/climate/climate_future/ozone/ozone_what.htm

    Also MAK above refers to El nino years corresponding to the eruptions. During these periods there is strong upwelling at the equatorial region particularly the Pacific. These upwellings go into the stratosphere I understand, and head poleward. This would have a cleansing effect and move eruption particulate toward the the higher latitude’s.
    This may explain the limited effects at MLO.

    Regards

  27. There is also downwelling longwave data there … but unfortunately, it doesn’t start until 1994 … rats …

    The downwelling shortwave data is nonsense. It is fundamentally the temperature of near atmosphere that wrongly applies the Stefan-Boltzaman equation to arrive at some farcical radiation. Its bunkum. The pyrgeometers used incorporate a thermopile to measure temperature. They do not measure radiation despite how the data may be presented.

    Radiation is an electromagnetic field and energy cannot be transferred through that field from a lower temperature emitter to a higher temperature receiver.

    Actual downwelling IR is rare and associated with temperature inversions.

    • @RickWill said- ‘energy cannot be transferred through that field from a lower temperature emitter to a higher temperature receiver.’

      Actually it can. Consider 2 carbon spheres 1 m in diameter 4 m apart. One at 250 K, the other at 300 K. Neither is aware of the other and the radiation transmits outward from both. They will both intercept and absorb radiation from the other. They will then reradiate it.

      Sandy, Minister of Future

      • Neither is aware of the other and the radiation transmits outward from both. They will both intercept and absorb radiation from the other. They will then reradiate it.

        The objects are in an electromagnetic field. Their presence affects that field. In that sense they are communicating.

        It is the same as a gravitational field. You do not define the gravitation force as the sum of the individual forces. There is a single force acting between the masses due to the presence of the other mass. In that sense the masses communicate. Like EMR gravity communicates at the speed of light in a vacuum.

        Energy transfers from a warm object to a cold object. It is not the difference between the incoming radiation and the outgoing radiation. The presence of each affects the other in the electromagnetic field. Each influences the field and the energy only transfers one way. Downwelling radiation from the atmosphere to a warm surface simply does not exist.

      • @AC Osborn- I dont need to. I made an A in Statistical Thermodynamics …. 49 yrs ago. Mabe the Greenies voted to change some thermodynamic laws and i wasnt informed, heh. 97% repealed the laws of logic. Hahahahaha.

        Sandy, Minister of Future

    • RickWill wrote, “Radiation is an electromagnetic field and energy cannot be transferred through that field from a lower temperature emitter to a higher temperature receiver.”

      Oh, good grief. More “slayer.” gibberish.

      No, RickWill, I’m sure you won’t believe me, but I’m telling you the truth: when an object absorbs EM radiation it doesn’t know or care whether its own temperature is warmer or colder than the temperature of the emitter of that radiation.

      If you live near a college or university, then please go find the physics department, and knock on the office door of a randomly chosen professor. Ask him or her about this. He’ll tell you what I told you.

      “A lie can travel halfway around the world before the truth can get its boots on.”
      – attributed to Mark Twain, and many others

      • daveburton said:

        when an object absorbs EM radiation it doesn’t know or care whether its own temperature is warmer or colder than the temperature of the emitter of that radiation

        The objects are in an electromagnetic field. The presence of each objects affects that field. The transfer of energy is one way; from the hotter to the colder.

        It is the same as a gravitational field. There is a single force. It is not the sum of two individual forces. However that force is a function of both masses. How does the earth communicate with the sun to know that the force between earth and sun a function of the combined masses?

        I do not put any faith in a randomly chosen academic professor. I have seen many fundamental misunderstandings of physics in the academic world. A large number of physic professors demonstrated their lack of understanding on the DWFTTW saga:
        https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/nz.general/8ewKf6I7g2E%5B1-25%5D

      • RickWill May 30, 2018 at 3:54 pm

        The objects are in an electromagnetic field. The presence of each objects affects that field. The transfer of energy is one way; from the hotter to the colder.

        Rick, you’ve totally misread the Second Law. It says NOTHING about energy. Instead, it talks solely about heat. Heat is the NET flow of energy, meaning the flow from A to B minus the flow from B to A.

        So yes, energy flows both ways … but heat only flows from hot to cold.

        I’m not going to debate this with you, been there, done that with a stack of people suffering from the same misconception. Let me suggest instead that you read my post on the subject …

        Best regards,

        w.

      • RickWill:

        Take a look at this engineering heat transfer textbook out of MIT:

        http://web.mit.edu/lienhard/www/ahttv211.pdf

        It explains radiative heat transfer through the concept of “radiative exchange” — see page 32 for a brief introduction, and in more detail starting on page 529.

        EVERY heat transfer textbook, whether engineering or physics (and I’m not talking about climate…), that I have ever seen explains heat transfer through this concept of radiative exchange that you consider ridiculous. It certainly was explained that way when I studied engineering at MIT many years ago.

        So we have many generations of engineers designing critical thermal systems based on this paradigm that you consider completely wrong. If you really believe that, you should not be wasting your time debating on blogs. You should be out demanding that the systems they have created, like nuclear power plants, be shut down as erroneously and dangerously designed.

  28. Willis:

    Why does the temperature remain the same after an eruption?
    I don’t know the answer but here is a possible explanation.

    The clouds up there reducing the average radiation are boiling/evaporating and condensing at the same time.
    We all know that when we turn the heat up under the kettle it boils faster and visa versa. Also some know that the temperature (at sea level) remains at 100 C and does not alter.

    Thus when an eruption reduces the radiation (ie: turns the heat down), the rate of cloud boiling/evaporation reduces; but likewise the temperature remains the same.

    The temperature at which this happens is determined by gravity and the corresponding water vapour pressure (VP) at the resulting absolute pressure, with the actual rate being controlled by the pressure difference between this VP and the Partial Pressure of water (PP)in the atmosphere in accordance with Dalton’s Law of Partial Pressure relating to the ambient humidity at the interface.

    The result of this I expect? would be a reduction in the Albedo of the cloud formations which could match (relatively) the reduction in the radiation due to an eruption. Hence a balance in the radiation budget. All this, of course, operating in a somewhat narrow band of conditions.

    As I say: I DO NOT KNOW!

    As an aside: As both gravity and vapour Pressure are more or less relative constants the temperature at which my kettle boils will remain at 100 C, this being but one specific point on the lapse rate trace where the same applies, I am confident that so long as my kettle continues to boil at 100 C there is no danger of the Earth overheating. S’long the seas nae gang dry!
    Caveat:
    Sadly water is not very good at heating the planet should it be necessary; so getting cold is my main worry for future generations.

    As usual a brilliant thought producing article Willis. My thanks. Just wish I had your expertise.
    Regards.

    • @CogNog2 said-‘ so getting cold is my main worry for future generations.’

      That is my concern also, but more immediately, the next 30 winters.

      Up until two weeks ago I was thinking we are coming into a grand solar minimum. But I’ve reconsidered after rereading some articles on skeptic climate blogs. I now believe we entered a ‘Micro- IceAge’ in 2004 when Bob Weber’s fig.10 showed a drop in 10.7 cm solar flux, leading to ocean cooling. I’m calling this a ‘Micro’ because I don’t expect it to last more than solar cycle 24, 25, and 26. Then there will be 7 years to transition back to warmer global temps, but cooler than now, mabe 13 C; say by 2050.

      What the mainstream media is not highlighting is this last winter was the coldest in 40 years in many countries in the northern hemisphere. North Western European countries on the Atlantic coast reported last summer was the coldest in 40 Years also.

      This spring has been cold and longer than usual which will affect planting and the growing season.

      During the Little Ice Age the temperature dropped about half a degree globally. As you can see from the Delingpole essay, it has dropped by 0.56 degrees already.
      This is what we can expect starting from last Dec; some winters early and extremely cold, some wet cool springs to kill crops, later spring frost dates, some cold summers, and more frequent and severe storms. The storminess index went from 6.5 to 14 during the LIA. This slide into cold is showing up in German weather station records where the last 30 yrs of winter (DJF) are trending -19 dgC per 1000 yrs, much faster than the slow decline to normal glacials, -0.7 per thousand yrs. Also the USHCN chart of summer max for the last hundred yrs shows -13 C per thousand yrs trend. Ground Station solar insolation shows a cooling trend from 2000 of about -10 watts per meter squared per decade. So after this Micro Ice Age we may just keep stair stepping down for the next four thousand years.

      I expect in the next ten years one billion will actually starve due to crop failures*, and one billion will be eaten by stronger omnivores; feral dogs, cats, and … humans.

      Dont wait for the flames to die and rubble stops bouncing, the sooner you act, the better your chances of survival.

      Sandy, Minister of Future

      *NB- the WHO reports 800 mln suffer from hunger, 10 mln die from starvation each yr, 60 mln die from disease each yr.

      So now thats 70 mln / yr, plus more food stress, weakening immune system, more disease, amplified by cold climate / storm stress, could easily be 100 mln /yr … Thats 1 Bln / 10 yrs.

      Sandy, Minister of Future

      • My main worry is the cornbelt. The cold and drought will be similar to 87 years ago.
        That was the Dust Bowl drought.
        And 87 years before we had the droughts in 1845 that killed a lot of the bison
        …..

      • Another doom forecst. Zonk are you aware that every doom forecast since the bigee by Thomas Malthus was totally wrong. The Flub of Rome and their “Limits to Imagination” and Population Bomber Ehrlich projected only a billion people left out of 3B by 2000. Well we have 7.5B, a growing obesity problem and still about the same number of poor that they had in 1970.

        Know why these linear thinkers were destined to get it totally wrong? Because they subscribe to the zero sum, petri-dish conditions for a helpless human population. The doomsters, like yourself are the least qualfied (and, at the same time, the only ones who do this sort of silliness) to make such arithmetic scenarios. Your and their missng factor is our greatest resource, write this down – human ingenuity. It confounds them every time even though its wonders stare them in the face everywhere they look.

        The type are not doers and innovators. Biologists, philosophers, sociologists …are descriptive static cataloguers of the way things are, bookkeepers – no innovation or ingenuity is in their experience or their science. They dont know the beans they are counting are increasing in number at a hectic pace.

        They take, for example, the resources of copper in 1970 and divide it by the annual consumption and say we are going to run out by 1990. I wagered with one of my Arts friends who argued the limits to growth case that by the end of the century we would have more copper reserves than we have now! Not only that, we have used the very same copper a few times over since 1970 and we have also substituted aluminum, glass fibers, microwaves, etc and we use a fraction of the amount per end use unit today.

        What are we going to do when we run out of oil? You worriers can relax the doers will simply take care of it, seamlessly. But population has already surpassed the petri-dish “carrying capacity” (give us a break!). Heck, Lake Superior could accommodate 90 billion people treading water with a square meter each- thats how puny we are grouped together. Not only that, we are 85% of peak population and we are even using ~4billion bushels of corn a year for making auto fuel – over half a bushel per head of global population.

        You should have at least said 50yrs – still wrong but safer! Ten is what Ehrhead used too! 100 months is what Prince Charlie used to the end of the world and Wacky Wadhams 2 years for Arctic Ice to be gone.

  29. Roy Spenser and others use a maximum forcing for Pinatubo of about -3 W/m2. http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/06/revisiting-the-pinatubo-eruption-as-a-test-of-climate-sensitivity/

    You are discussing a change of -24.5 W/m2. Changes in solar radiation (TSI) are divided by a factor of 4 to convert them to forcing (because of the TSI is spread over a sphere with a surface area 4X larger than a disk. There might be another factor of 2 involved if you calculated an average change over daytime instead of a continuous average over 24 hour days.

    If you assume a mixed layer of 50 m, a 1 W/m2 imbalance is capable of warming the mixed layer and atmosphere at an initial rate of 0.2 K/yr. (I use the term initial rate, because – as soon as the planet starts to cool – it radiates less to space and the imbalance changes. If we assume Roy’s 3 W/m2 maximum forcing is correct, then the maximum cooling would be 0.6 K (and less if we account for the change in OLR with cooling), The natural variation in temperature at the sites you show may be masking the cooling due to volcanic aerosols.

    Also see: http://rankexploits.com/musings/2012/pinatubo-climate-sensitivity-and-two-dogs-that-didnt-bark-in-the-night/

  30. Willis,

    As usual an interesting article.

    When I use my mark 1 eyeball to assess temperature changes, it would appear that there is all but no warming in most of the plots that you have set out in this article.

    It would be amusing to overlay Mauna Loa CO2 data upon the below plot.

    It would appear that Hawaii just like the contiguous US, shows no significant warming trend, as indeed is the case with Greenland and Iceland. It is remarkable that given that CO2 is a well mixed gas, there are so many places in the Northern Hemisphere that show no warming since the late 1930s/early 1940s (or in the case of Hawaii during the satellite era). I discount the Southern Hemisphere since it has no worthwhile data, and as Phil Jones so candidly pointed out, in the Cimategate emails, between the tropics and the continent of Antarctica, the Southern Hemisphere data is largely made up.

  31. Just like most data in ‘Climate Science’, we have no worthwhile historic data on aerosols in the atmosphere, and aerosol emissions (both natural and manmade)..

    Because of this, these are simply made up, and then this made up data is used as a fudge to input into the climate models because the models show far too much CO2 induced warming.

    Willis, I recall a long time ago you posted an interesting article on not being able to identify volcano eruptions from a quick look at the temperature record. Perhaps that interesting article should be linked to this present article.

    It appears that volcanoes have little impact on the temperature record and would appear to be short lived. One person who frequently comments on this blog often shows the satellite data detrended of volcanoes and ENSO and when so detrended, it shows no significant warming during the entirety of the satellite era!

      • Burl Henry May 30, 2018 at 5:45 pm Edit

        2. Essentially all VEI4 and larger volcanic eruptions can be identified by examining a plot of average anomalous global temperatures.

        Burl, that’s simply not true, and I can demonstrate it. Read the following two posts and tell us how you did at spotting the volcanoes based on temperature records:

        Volcanic Disruptions

        Get Laki, Get Unlaki

        w.

      • Willis:

        It definitely depends upon which graphs one uses.

        I used 200X enlargments of WoodforTrees.org graphs of Global Average Temperature Anomalies, in Deg. C. 1850-2015, for both GISS and Hadcrut4 data sets.

        (These graphs are less noisy than the ones that you show).

        On these graphs, I entered the dates all of the VEI4 and larger volcanic eruptions, and essentially all of them showed an obvious temporary temperature decrease, following the date of eruption, frequently causing a La Nina.,

        It DOES pay to squint at graphs!

      • Heck, Burl, here’s an easier way to test your claim that “Essentially all VEI4 and larger volcanic eruptions can be identified by examining a plot of average anomalous global temperatures.” See if you can identify the VEI 4 volcanos in the graph below.

        I’m sure you can see the problem … can you even identify the 4 VEI 6 eruptions?

        w.

      • Another good example of what I like to describe as the fallacy that the theory is valid, therefore the effect is significant.

        It looks like volcanoes contribute to the noise but almost never have an effect significant enough to distinguish from the noise. The practical impact is that they cool in theory and if you already know the dates they happened, you can convince yourself that you see some transient effect. If they never erupted, it seems like the trend would not be much different and only the standard deviation would be lower.

      • Burl Henry May 30, 2018 at 8:37 pm

        Willis:

        Enlarge the graph by 200X, locate the dates of eruptions on it, and you will find that they are identifiable.

        So your claim is that if I tell you where they are you can identify them???

        w.

      • Willis:

        Your claim is that the effects of volcanic eruptions do not show up in the climatic record.

        My data shows that essentially ALL of the temporary increases and decreases in anomalous global temperatures are the result of volcanic eruptions, up to about 1970, when the effects of Clean Air efforts began to show up.in the climate record.

      • “2. Essentially all VEI4 and larger volcanic eruptions can be identified by examining a plot of average anomalous global temperatures.”

        yes but you have to know what you are doing, because there are times when a natural cycle ( say elnino) is coincident with the volcano. A simple look at the chart wont always tell much.

      • Steven Mosher:

        Yes, you have to know what you are doing.

        If an eruption occurs during an El Nino, its initial effect upon the climate will be lessened, and if it occurs during a La Nina, its effect will be more obvious..

      • Burl, here’s the problem … HadCRUT data as before

        As you can see, volcanos of VEI 4 and greater occur at the top of the temperature range, the middle, and the bottom of the range.

        Nor is it helped by the procedure you recommend …

        I used 200X enlargments of WoodforTrees.org graphs of Global Average Temperature Anomalies, in Deg. C. 1850-2015, for both GISS and Hadcrut4 data sets.

        Here’s a closeup:

        See El Chichon? There’s no way that you could just look at the temperature record and identify that eruption as you claim… and despite that it affected the stratosphere more than Pinatubo.

        w.

      • Steven Mosher May 30, 2018 at 10:15 pm

        “2. Essentially all VEI4 and larger volcanic eruptions can be identified by examining a plot of average anomalous global temperatures.”

        yes but you have to know what you are doing, because there are times when a natural cycle ( say elnino) is coincident with the volcano. A simple look at the chart wont always tell much.

        Sorry, Steven, but that’s simply not true. Even if you remove the El Nino variations you STILL can’t tell. That’s an urban legend. Here are the same two graphs I showed above, but this time with the El Nino variations removed from the temperature data:

        See El Chichon in the lower graph? Are you going to seriously tell me that you could locate that by inspection of the temperature record? And that’s the big one, while you and Burl are claiming that VEI 4 volcanos can be identified … those are the blue dots. Read’m and weep …

        w.

      • Burt sez … Essentially all VEI4 and larger volcanic eruptions can be identified by examining a plot of average anomalous global temperatures.
        I sez … VEI=4? No way. VEI=5? Maybe for a few lucky ones, like el Chichon, if you can massage out el Nino.
        VEI=6 (and up)? Way. But consider that it takes a year for the SO2 (sulfur dioxide) to convert to H2SO4 sulfuric acid droplets and to spread around the globe, so you should – no MUST – plot the volcano dots at eruption +1 and +2 years.
        You’ll also get better results if you use the MSU satellite temperatures from Roy Spencer, which is truly global with much fewer fabrications than CRU or GISS et al.
        Of course, subtracting out el Nino makes it better yet.
        I did all of that for my presentation at the 2015 Global Monitoring Annual Conference (GMAC):
        https://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/publications/annual_meetings/2015/posters/P-48.pdf
        if you wish to plow through the red and blue charts on the right side of the poster. It shows the effects of el Chichon and Pinatubo loud and clear.
        If you want an even better signal, consider that volcanic effects should be greatest for high latitude summers over land (so Northern Hemisphere), due to low sun angles shining through longer paths of volcanic haze.
        For example, “At the two stations with the longest record (in Alaska & Yukon), Eagle and Dawson, the summer of 1912 was the coldest on record…. That same year saw the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century, that of Katmai in June of 1912.” Katmai was a VEI=6 in Alaska.
        That’s from a lengthy climate report I did for the National Park Service, page 58-59:
        https://irma.nps.gov/DataStore/DownloadFile/468891
        So choosing Alaska instead of Hawaii for this post would lead to very different conclusions.

  32. “So … why was there no reduction in the temperatures anywhere in the islands from that large a change in forcing? ”

    We do know that the planet cooled globally after the volcanic events. The most likely reason for the lack of discernible change in this region is either the ocean buffering effects or a reduction in low level clouds below the height of the observatory, or a mix of both. There are no other suspects in the case.

  33. Excellent work Willis. Additional evidence that Mother Gaia does not in fact sit on the knife’s edge of an irreversible tipping point. Our homeostatic home planet is an amazing system.

    I have one quibble with wording, if I may.

    My theory predicts that during the volcanic periods, the clouds would rearrange in order to cut out less sunshine, opposing the effects of the volcanic aerosols.

    Your meaning is clear, but I think it could be misunderstood by some readers as if the clouds “decide to take action” to oppose the changing conditions. Of course the clouds are a bunch of inanimate condensing water vapor with no power of agency.

    I’d suggest it’s better expressed as in the normal case with high incident solar radiation, there is a lot of evaporation leading to dense clouds. After volcanic eruptions dimmed the incident radiation, there was less evaporation, and fewer, less dense clouds formed as a result. The sun and the aerosols are the actors, the clouds are passive, right?

    If there is less evaporation, isn’t there less rain? How does that fit in the puzzle to potentially explain stable surface temperatures?

    • @Rich Davis said- ‘ I’d suggest it’s better expressed as in the normal case with high incident solar radiation, there is a lot of evaporation leading to dense clouds. After volcanic eruptions dimmed the incident radiation, there was less evaporation, and fewer, less dense clouds formed as a result. The sun and the aerosols are the actors, the clouds are passive, right?’

      In this instance I prefer Willis economy of words that ‘clouds would rearrange.’ Heh.

      Sandy, Minister of Future

    • @Rich- perhaps Mother Gaia’s clouds DO have agency. I wouldn’t be surprised.

      Sandy minister of future

    • But again, thinking through the mechanism of why there are fewer clouds that let in more warming sunlight when that sunlight is less intense, if there is less evaporation, isn’t there also less rain?

      Less evaporation from the ocean into the air gives us less water vapor and less dense clouds (and also cools the ocean less). The winds that Willis showed are not significantly changing, still blow over the island. That also makes sense doesn’t it? If the pressure is a function of the air temperature that isn’t changing, then the wind should not change either? If there is less water vapor in the clouds, is there less precipitation at the points where the surface temperature is being measured? It seems to me that when it rains, the latent heat released in condensation warms the cold air up at the cloud and the cold rain falls down through the air below the cloud and cools that warmer air until it finally equilibrates with the surface temperature. If there is less rain, then there should be less cooling of the surface and air. It could be the reason why the surface temperatures are not affected by the lower incident radiation.

      • This theory can be tested. It says that there should be less than normal rainfall in normally rainy regions after the eruptions and also that arid regions will see a significant cooling because you can’t reduce non-existent cloud cover or reduce non-existent rainfall.

  34. @Willis- I reread the article and the chart of MLO temperature chose a -1.8 just at the beginning of each eruption. Followed by a jagged rise up to +3 and +1.6. So maybe after the initial wave of particulates passed over, it subsequently got very thin globally.

    Sandy, Minister of Future

  35. HI Willis, excellent and interesting work/observation.

    Some thoughts:

    What, exactly, is being measured by the MLO instruments? I see “average solar radiation”. The incoming radiation from the sun has a distinct spectral form, then traverses the atmosphere…and ultimately affects the ground/atmosphere. Can the spectrum of the non volcanic incoming be compared to the volcanic affected period? No particular hypothesis there..just looking for change, ie data…and THEN work on a hypothesis (:)).

    How about comparing a couple “good” mainland temperature sets against the islands during the volcanic period…fraught with all kinds of problems…ie the plethora of other changing things….

    Can you look at the local affect of an eclipse? Since eclipse solar incoming attenuation is taking place outside the atmosphere (albeit for extremely short periods of time), perhaps a comparison might lead to some insights.

    How about night vs day temperature during the subject periods…ie did night temperatures not drop as much? Again, perhaps a distribution analysis of the 24 hour solar period during the eruption period vs “clear” periods.

    I absolutely love your remark…”the data surprised me.”. Aside from the scientific method, this should be a test of any real scientific endeavor..

    Best,

    Ethan Brand

    • This is where I was going with my previous question about total solar irradiance v/s actual heat produced by that full spectrum.

      A quick look online and I see that TOA irradiance is biased way more blue and green light than red and infra red. We also know that the earth reflects way more blue and green light than it does red (from oceans and vegitation). Therefore, those wavelengths should obviously have less “heating potential”, correct?

      I see lots of information online about albedo, but only as a percentage of total spectrum irradiance. It the aerosols are preferentially blocking blue green light, they obviously would have less of an impact on warming (cooling) of the planet. It also seems obvious to me that this could be the case, just from observations that close to the sources, the sky is often observed to be more reddish.

      Having said all this, we would need a albedo spectrum for the planet, subtract that from the irradiance spectrum and calculate total “effective” irradiance for non volcanic times and then the same for after an eruption. The difference between those two will be the actual energy input change between the two states.

      I have a hunch that green/blue visible light is over represented when using total irradiance as your base value. A portion of that is reflected back in to space anyway.

      Hope that makes sense,
      Roland

  36. The surface temperature of water or ice closely follows the measured atmospheric dew point/frost point because the air is saturated with water vapor at the interface. There isn’t much water vapor at the elevation of MLO but a lot of it nearer sea level around the islands. A lot more energy goes into the evaporation of water than goes into heating the atmosphere. The endothermic reaction of evaporation cools the surface of water or ice even in clouds.

  37. “One of [the fascinating datasets] is a measurement of direct solar radiation, minute by minute, since about 1980.”

    Do these datasets show any variance due to atmospheric tides? It seems to me that a ‘high’ atmospheric tide means that solar radiation (all radiation) must travel through more atmosphere than at ‘low’ atmospheric tide. More atmosphere would mean more CO2 as well right? Is there any discernable difference?

  38. This will be overly-long, so apologies in advance for being verbose:

    Excellent article, Dr. E. (even if you are not a DSc — — you write and analyze better than most that I’ve ever known [same goes for Anthony]). As a read it, one thought kept coming to me. Your statement about the apparent lack of a response was quite telling for me.

    In my science classes, we had to learn a concept called “stationarity”. Now, before we begin on this, let me state that I believe there are multiple definitions of stationarity. Other disciplines use alternate definitions from the one my classes needed, and used, as we studied and learned. If this is NOT the definition you know, be advised that it is likely an ‘ad hoc’ use. I respectfully request that we not quibble.

    “Stationarity” as I was taught, means that the impulse response of system is invariant (or slightly variant within some strict constraints, most of which are able to be accounted for). Let us take a simple example to illustrate:

    When I walk into the kitchen, I reach for the light switch, and when I activate it, the light comes on. Each time I repeat this, the same thing happens (and please do not bring in such things as defective light bulb, power outage, severed wires … … … ). When I do an action, the response is the same; this is “stationarity”.

    Now, suppose we consider a non-stationarity system: Same scenario, I walk into the kitchen, activate the light switch. Since my system no longer has stationarity, when I expect the light to come on, the dishwasher starts instead. Then, the next time, the window opens; next time, the refrigerator shuts off; or the spigot turns on, or … … …

    You get the idea: I apply an impulse, the result is a seemingly random, unassociated event.

    To tie this into your post, it seems to me that since the atmosphere is a non-stationarity system, the ‘expected’ response may not materialize at all. We know the eruptions have the potential to cause slight cooling world-wide, but the specific location you examined had other mitigating factors, such that the response was not “identical” to the two events.

    To further expand this comment, this is the prime failing of climate science, such as it is, in treating the global climate system as a system that exhibits stationarity, viz., if we apply an impulse (more CO2), then the response is an increase in temperatures. The premise is flawed (fatally) from the outset, since the atmosphere does not possess stationarity, and the ‘climate science’ community treats it as if it does.

    I welcome your comments as well, as we are all learners,

    Vlad

    • @Vlad
      It’s not satisfying to me to talk about a black box that does random schist. It makes me think of witch doctors doing rain dances and explaining that it works by magic. Surely you admit that the “stationarity” concept is an abstraction that expresses the concept that the real system is far more complex than some simplistic model of the real system, such that the model is sometimes correct and sometimes not? Like if the model is a stopped clock, it happens to give the correct time (in the real system), twice a day. The real system is ultimately explainable and works mechanistically. That isn’t changed by our knowledge or lack of knowledge.

      It always grates on me that in medical practice, things that are not understood at all are given a four- or five-word syndrome name, to cover up the fact that we have no clue. Doctors are not allowed to say you’ve got a problem that we don’t understand. They are paid too much not to give you an incomprehensible explanation. You have a pain when you do something where you didn’t have a pain doing that thing before, your body suffers from non-stationarity syndrome.

      No, it’s the mechanism that matters. If you can’t explain why, giving it a name is not really very useful. You can’t create a drug therapy except by trial and error, without understanding the biochemistry. Analogously, you can’t create a truly useful model of climate without really understanding the physical mechanisms sufficiently that “non-stationarity” is eliminated.

      At least in medical research, giving something a name even though you don’t understand it enough to realize that you’re lumping several unrelated disorders together based on similar symptoms, may enable you to come up with therapies that treat the symptoms. That is at least marginally useful. But in climate “science” we have the situation where the system that is too complex to model is simplified down to give the desired spurious answer needed by the politicians. Like Homer Simpson’s beer, is there nothing CO2 can’t do?

      • Greetings, Mr. Davis,

        As I stated, it is possible that the term my professors used was somewhat ad hoc, but use it they did, and teach us how to use and understand what we were trying to learn.

        Even the IPCC admits that global climate is a, ” … coupled, non-linear, dynamic system … “. Now, a true scientist (and/or an engineer) would realize that trying to establish operational parameters for such a system might well nigh be impossible.

        For example, and expanding on the concept on ‘non-stationarity’, let us take a single day on Earth: it does not matter what day (date) we choose, so let us just pick 12 April of each year. We can agree that within a few thousand kilometres of arc, the Earth is in just about the same position in it’s orbit around the Sun, and within a narrow range of values, is receiving about the same amount of total solar irradiance.

        Now, I do not know about where you live, but when I think back on all the different 12 Aprils that I have seen (and in the same geographic location, obviously), not a single one has been identical: each 12 April has had some, unique, non-duplicate weather for that 24-hour period. Of course, there have been similar temperatures (and the range has a determinate consistency to it), some had snow, some had rain, some were completely clear, some were varying degrees of clouds, and wind speeds and directions were all over the compass.

        Yet, the input into the system is about the same, but the OUTPUT is always different; such as it is with global climate. Since it is a complex, non-linear, coupled, dynamic system, exhibiting characteristics of non-stationarity, the impulse response is not consistent. In the geological record, we see clearly (h/t Bill Illis) that carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and temperature have no relation to each other. In the Cryogenian, atmospheric CO2 concentration was measured in PERCENTS (GTS, 2004, 2012, 2016, Gradstein, Ogg, Ogg) yet we had global glaciation.

        The key here is that the “input” of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere does not, has not, and will not, have any measurable effect on ‘average’ global temperatures, in contrast to what the IPCC et al, say. They assume a system with stationarity, that responds to the impulse of a “greenhouse” gas into the atmosphere with an automatic increase in temperature. The premise is fatally flawed, therefore any conclusions derived from that premise are equally (if not more) flawed.

        Yes, I am aware of an Earth system that exhibits stationarity; I use it almost every day. My work would be meaningless (and useless) if the system I study did NOT have stationarity, or at least a close-enough approximation to it to make my analyses valid.

        Thank you for your comment(s), and I look forward to any further discussion you might choose to engage in.

        Regards to all,

        Vlad

      • @Vlad

        Yet, the input into the system is about the same, but the OUTPUT is always different; such as it is with global climate. Since it is a complex, non-linear, coupled, dynamic system, exhibiting characteristics of non-stationarity, the impulse response is not consistent.

        But not all the inputs are the same. Or if you prefer, the boundary conditions are not the same. As you point out, so many chaotic processes. Each April 11th is also different leading to different inputs for April 12th, and the different April 12th’s lead to different April 13th’s. All the way through to the next different April 11th, that provides the boundary conditions for the next different April 12th. The solar inputs may be very nearly the same, but other than that, not so much.

        They’re able to do a moderately good job of calculating forward four or five days to predict the weather, but eventually the uncertainty of so many chaotic processes adds up to the prediction being no better than a guess.

        As a qualitative description, your “non-stationarity” is a fine alternative to “not feasible to calculate”. I’m not disputing that, it’s possibly a philosophical question. Is the universe operating on fixed laws regardless of how incredibly complex, or is there some degree of randomness where the same exact boundary conditions and the same inputs lead to truly random outputs (as opposed to outputs that can’t be practically calculated with current technology). I believe that there is no such thing as random outputs. Sure, quantum physics and all that. But at the macro scale, no. Just because it’s too hard for us to calculate does not make it random. At one point in time we couldn’t give a decent guess at the weather 3 days out. We had “red skies at night, sailor’s delight, red skies in morning, sailors take warning”. Same system, different human knowledge. Our knowledge or ability to calculate and predict doesn’t determine whether the system operates under fixed laws. If the tree falls in the forest, it does in fact still make a noise, even if there is nobody there to hear it.

        You could really go down the rabbit hole and start talking about whether my claim implies no free will. I will climb out of that hole right now.

        We’re certainly on the same page that nobody can show that CO2 drives temperature. I think it’s far more likely that the many homeostatic processes dampen any warming or cooling effects that CO2 or any other factor may have. And CO2 always lags temperature.

      • GH gases only make up 0.5% of the atmosphere.
        It is actually ridiculous to suggest that such a small portion of mass can do such a thing as trap heat and make earth warmer.
        We have to get rid of thinkers who support this theory.

      • Get rid of them? Not cool, Henry.
        People have a right to be wrong in their opinions, as long as they don’t try to force others to hold them.

        Besides which GHGs do have some effect, just never the runaway catastrophic effect that the CAGW-believers claim.

      • Whether no effect of GHGs or just a little effect, that was not the point. The point was about the “Get rid of them” comment.

        You want to live in a world run by CAGW fanatics who take his advice about getting rid of people because of their opinions?

      • I also agree with Rich. My bad. That was not a correct comment to make Sorry. Although I dont think we will ever get to terraforming on Mars if people stick to the boxes experiments from 100 years ago.

      • henryp wrote, “It is actually ridiculous to suggest that such a small portion of mass can do such a thing as trap heat and make earth warmer.”

        Have you never used food coloring in the kitchen, Henry? What percentage of food coloring do you think is required to change the color of a fluid?

        Can you see the effect of one drop of food coloring in a half-liter (1.06 pints) of water?
        (I’m sure you must know that the answer is “yes, of course you can.”)

        One drop is about 0.05 ml.

        One drip in a half-liter = 0.05 milliliter / 0.5 liters = 0.05 ml / 500 ml = 1/10000 = 0.01% = 100 ppmv.

        Of course, if it can change the color, it can change the temperature. That’s obvious, right?

        That’s how GHGs work: they tint the atmosphere (in the LWIR), changing the absorption spectrum of the atmosphere. When the changed atmosphere absorbs wavelengths of LWIR radiation which otherwise would have escaped to outer space, that warms the atmosphere.
         

        henryp wrote, “We have to get rid of thinkers who support this theory.”

        Now you sound like the Climatistas: if the facts aren’t on your side, muzzle or “get rid” of the opposition.

      • Greetings, Mr. Burton:

        Your ‘food coloring’ analog is a completely different system from the atmosphere. Once you add the food coloring to the water (or other liquid), ignoring evaporation and such complications, the system becomes static, not dynamic. Global climate is a dynamic system; if you add a component (a perturbation, if you will) the system seeks some “equilibrium” state. If I add some ‘heat-trapping CO2’ to the atmosphere, the (supposed) additional ‘heat’ causes a phenomenon called convection, which, eventually, causes said heat to radiate away to a sink (in this case, the Universe). The phenomena we call weather are a series of attempts by the global climate system to achieve equilibrium.

        Just curious here: previously we’ve discussed the failure of General Circulation Models to account for a lack of stationarity in the global climate system. Are you aware of the fact that all GCM’s also set advection and convection to zero?

        It is no wonder GCM’s are essentially useless. They ignore the physical realities of the system they attempt to “model”. Further, I am in agreement with henryp who says that we need to be rid of those who would impose their will upon us, which they would do by force, if necessary. The ‘warmunist’ community is welcome to their opinions, as far as I’m concerned, but when they feel it is their “duty” to force their vision of the world upon the rest of us who do not share it, then yes, by all means, we need to fight them, and defeat them. If they would adopt a live and let live attitude, then they are welcome to live their lives as they see fit.

        But I should be allowed the same latitude; I do not believe the proven-false hypothesis of “CO2 causes warming.”

        Regards to all,

        Vlad

      • “Even the IPCC admits that global climate is a, ” … coupled, non-linear, dynamic system … “.”

        Yet they keep trying to extend a linear trend far into the future. Odd that.

      • Deplorable Vlad wrote, “Are you aware of the fact that all GCM’s also set advection and convection to zero? It is no wonder GCM’s are essentially useless.”

        As bad as the GCMs are, I am confident they do not assume zero advection and convection. What is your source for that claim?

        I do not trust the prognostications of the GCMs, but not for that reason.

        Weather models are tested every week, when their forecasts are compared with reality. But a climate model which makes 100 year forecasts requires 100 years to test once.

            “Prediction is difficult, especially about the future.”
            – Yogi Berra, apparently paraphrasing Niels Bohr,

        The utility and skillfulness of computer models depends on:
        #1. how well the processes which they model are understood,
        #2. how faithfully those processes are simulated in the computer code, and
        #3. whether the results can be repeatedly tested so that the models can be validated and refined.

        Ideally, all three of those conditions should be met. The GCMs flunk them all.

        Specialized models, which try to model reasonably well-understood processes like PGR and radiation transport, can be useful, because the processes they model are manageably simple and well-understood.

        Weather forecasting models are also useful, even though the processes they model are very complex, because the models’ short-term predictions can be repeatedly tested, allowing the models to be validated and refined.

        But more ambitious models, like GCMs, which attempt to simulate the combined effects of many poorly-understood processes, over time periods too long to allow repeated testing and refinement, are of very dubious utility. They flunk #1 and #3.

        E.g., NASA’s ModelE2 consists of about a half-million lines of moldy Fortran code, which it is safe to assume nobody actually understands. So we can’t even have confidence in #2.

        They’ve got so many fudge factors, “knobs” and pseudo-random number generator calls in there that they can make it do just about anything at all, but it doesn’t in any sense represent an understanding of the Earth’s climate system. What’s more, unlike weather models, which are comparably complex but get tested every week, the predictions of those GCMs are untestable. Ask any computer scientist whether he would trust an untestable 500,000 line Fortran program as the basis for multi-million dollar decisions.

        The limited history of how GCMs’ predictions have compared with eventual reality does not inspire confidence, either:

        http://sealevel.info/hansen1988_retrospective.html

        So I agree that the GCMs are untrustworthy, but it is not plausible that they assume zero advection and convection.

      • Mr. Burton:

        GCM’s claim that CO2 will cause warming (the basis for all of the hoopla about “carbon” [sic]), and you even attempted an analogy for CO2 in the atmosphere with the dye in a liquid.

        So I am at a loss to understand your distrust of GCM’s (for whatever reason). If the GCM’s are untrustworthy, and they form the basis for all of the proposed “solutions” to (mythical, non-existant) ‘carbon’-caused warming, then I fail to see why there is a problem, and your advocacy for accepting that carbon dioxide causes warming. The geological record says otherwise.

        The reference was the landmark paper by Gerlich and Tschusner. As they dissected the code used in GCM’s, they found that both parameters were assumed to be zero; there is no wind (tell that to anyone driving Interstate-80 between Rawlins and Rock Springs … ), there is no convection. If you doubt this, then your issue is with those authors, not me.

        Regards,

        Vlad

  39. The temperature didn’t change following the eruptions because the heat capacity of the oceans.

    • OK, maybe for Hawaii, but then how do we explain that temperatures did drop significantly on average across the globe, even if not on Hawaii?

      • Rich. Throw away any notion of a global temperature, it’s a fantasy number. Instead, show me random individual stations that show a drop in temp as a result of any eruption.

  40. Willis,
    It makes sense to me that there is a cap on how much the incoming solar radiation can be reduced due to stratospheric SO2 – because like any gas, the stratosphere has a limit on how many particles it can carry per unit volume. And being quite thin, it can carry a lot less than the lower atmosphere. My conjecture is that you are seeing the stratosphere at its limit with these two eruptions.

  41. Several people have commented on the fact that there was a large El Nino during the El Chichon eruption, and a smaller one during the Pinatubo eruption. So I went and calculated the effects of the El Ninos.

    There is indeed a correlation between the El Nino index and the MLO temperature, with a long lag of 14 months between the two. However, removing the effects of the El Nino makes little difference to the temperature, some tenths of a degree here and there (sd of differences =0.4°C). It doesn’t change the overall shape of the temperature record.

    The same is true about the sunshine records. There is a correlation with the El Nino, with a lag of two months. But again, it makes little overall difference to the results.

    So I fear that the mystery is … well … still a mystery. I have a couple more things to investigate. One is relative humidity, the other is barometric pressure. I’ll report back when I’ve done that … unless I get distracted first by … oooh, shiny! …

    w.

    • Hawaii being in the middle of the Pacific ocean, there is a significant delay in any temperature changes due to massive thermal inertia Pacific has. Thus, I would argue that MLO temperature index would give little information of the real volcanic eruption effects.

      Better source for this information are the world temperature records: There you can easily see the lack of 1997/98-like El Nino peak. Estimating what the peak should have been based on 1997/97 and 2016 big El Nino’s, you can easily see the effect being at least 0.9-0.9 degrees Celcius.

  42. Richard Keen May 30, 2018 at 11:06 pm

    Burt sez …

    Essentially all VEI4 and larger volcanic eruptions can be identified by examining a plot of average anomalous global temperatures.

    I sez … VEI=4? No way. VEI=5? Maybe for a few lucky ones, like el Chichon, if you can massage out el Nino.
    VEI=6 (and up)? Way. But consider that it takes a year for the SO2 (sulfur dioxide) to convert to H2SO4 sulfuric acid droplets and to spread around the globe, so you should – no MUST – plot the volcano dots at eruption +1 and +2 years.
    You’ll also get better results if you use the MSU satellite temperatures from Roy Spencer, which is truly global with much fewer fabrications than CRU or GISS et al.
    Of course, subtracting out el Nino makes it better yet.

    Thanks for the challenge, Richard. I did exactly what you asked. Here is the UAH MSU data with the El Nino variations subtracted out using the MEI index. It shows the date of El Chichon plus as you requested the two year period following the eruption. Remember that El Chichon caused a deeper reduction in MSO solar than did Pinatubo. Remember also that El Chichon caused a larger increase in stratospheric temperature in the MSU data you recommend than did Pinatubo.

    With that as prologue, here’s the result:

    Oh, wait, that’s the incomplete graph where I hadn’t yet put in the dates of El Chichon and the dates on the axis … however, that shouldn’t matter. You claim you can detect big eruptions like El Chichon by looking at the UAH temperature record with the El Nino subtracted out. So … care to take a guess where in that graph El Chichon occurred?

    … I can wait …

    … OK, now that you’ve made your choice exactly which point represents the date of the eclipse, here we go …

    And now that we know where El Chichon occurred, would you care to point out to me the claimed reduction in temperature in the shaded 2-year period following the eruption?

    I’m sorry, but even big volcanoes that cause a clear reduction in downwelling solar and a clear increase in stratospheric temperature and even a clear change in the albedo during a lunar eclipse may NOT cause the slightest decrease in global temperature.

    I say that this occurs because the clouds readjust to let in more sunshine, thus canceling out the reduction due to volcanic aerosols.

    But heck, that’s just me … why do you think El Chichon made no detectable reduction in global temperature?

    Best regards to you and yours,

    w.

  43. >>Why was there no reduction in the temperatures anywhere
    >>in the islands from that large a change in forcing?

    Because local temlerature does not depend upon local conditions. The temperature in the UK is more often than not controlled by the weather in Moscow or the Canaries, rather than the insolation in England.

    In the same manner the temlerature in Hawaii is controlled by the Pacific, and that large heat-sink is not going to change in a couple of years. Give it a couple of decades or centuries and it might…..

    R

    • Willis,
      Regards your El Chichion update above using UAH LTTA, clearly the thunderstorm thermostat will have a balancing effect. But I wonder at what point the thermostat can be overwhealmed by the loss in insolation.

      I have not been back through your posts, to see the max albedo and insolation changes resulting from a thundery day in the tropics. But I might postulate the thermostat system becomming overcome when the change in insolation is half the total capability of the thunderstorm thermostat (over an extended period).

      R

    • R: I like your post and suspect you are right in essence, but beware of saying the temperature is not due to local conditions. Milankovitch, day/night, the geographical position, and seasonality are the primary determinants of temperature. But you are right to point out the major role played by air advection caused by pressure gradients.

    • Ralfellis May 31, 2018 at 3:22 am Edit

      >>Why was there no reduction in the temperatures anywhere
      >>in the islands from that large a change in forcing?

      Because local temlerature does not depend upon local conditions. The temperature in the UK is more often than not controlled by the weather in Moscow or the Canaries, rather than the insolation in England.

      In the same manner the temlerature in Hawaii is controlled by the Pacific, and that large heat-sink is not going to change in a couple of years. Give it a couple of decades or centuries and it might…..

      Thanks, Ralph, but that’s simply not true. People overestimate oceanic thermal inertia all the time. I just took a look at the records. The ocean surface temperatures around Hawaii changes by up to 2°C in a single month. Surely they could do the during the two years following an eruption.

      But they didn’t.

      w.

  44. HenryP:

    You have been following this thread, and I have been wanting to contact you.

    Earlier this year, we had a discussion about the effect of SO2 aerosols on Earth’s climate.

    I now have a post on a pre-print site titled “Atmospheric SO2: Principal Control Knob Governing Earth’s Temperatures” which you might want to comment on. It is still a “work in Progress”, but I believe that it fully explains all that has happened to Earth’s climate both recently and historically.

    It can be viewed or downloaded at https://Osf.io/bycj4/

      • Burl
        I have now read your report. It seems you have found correlation. If I understand it correctly: there is more warming if there is less SO2 and more cooling if there is more SO2 contamination.
        First thing: You have not tested any parameter? That means that you also are trying to evaluate that which has never been tested. It is the same problem that I have mentioned before to Ed Bo. Please check that comment again. Just remember that correlation does not yet mean causation. It can simply mean that warmer weather pushes SO2 down.
        This is the same problem with the CO2:
        HCO3- (there gigatons of bicarbonate in the oceans) + heat => CO2 + OH-
        The first smoke from a kettle is the CO2 coming out of the water, so obviously there is a correlation between CO2 content in the atmosphere and warmth.
        But it does not mean that CO2 causes warmth. Assuming that the correlation was causal is another big mistake that the climate scientists made.
        Secondly, I don’t see anything mentioned about SO2 aerosols in the earth spectrum as we see what sun rays are being deflected from earth back to earth via the moon. See the report that I quoted in the other comment to Ed Bo:
        https://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2018/05/29/when-eruptions-dont/#comment-2829642
        Here I quote it again:
        http://w.astro.berkeley.edu/~kalas/disksite/library/turnbull06a.pdf
        Note that it does pick up the deflections by earth (cooling!) of CO2, water, methane and even ozone, but no SO2. (fig. 6 bottom). Unfortunately this could mean that there is no direct deflection of sunrays by SO2 or otherwise the concentration is so small that we cannot see it doing anything. I am not sure what the spectrum of SO2 aerosols looks like. Does it have absorptions in the UV? Then it could behave similar to ozone and peroxide.

        At this stage I must explain that if it were not for our atmosphere we would all be toast. That is why it is not a good idea to go to Mars before you have created an atmosphere. Namely, the most energetic particles coming from the sun are picked up by the oxygen and nitrogen and OH radicals forming ozone, N-oxides and peroxides respectively. The more of the most energetic particles, the more ozone & others. In its turn: the more ozone & others, the less UV in the oceans.
        Primarily, this is what determines most of our ‘climate’, i.e. that what we get from the sun. In the oceans, there is mass, for radiation to be absorbed and re-radiation be transformed into warmth.

        Your question now about the SO2. If there is more ozone & others this will gobble up your SO2 because ozone & others are easily able to oxidize the SO2 to SO3 and SO4. So, in the end, the correlation you found makes sense but there is no causation……

        Hope you understand. Feel free to ask if you don’t.

        BW

        H.

      • HenryP:

        Thank you for taking the time to read and comment upon my Post.

        First, with respect to SO2, in the presence of moisture it very quickly converts to H2SO4 (the SO2 aerosol), so that is all that we are dealing with.

        With respect to the SO2 aerosol,, the NASA fact sheet on it states “”Stratospheric SO2 aerosols reflect sunlight, reducing the amount of energy reaching the lower atmosphere and the Earth’s surface, cooling them. Human made sulfate aerosols absorb no sunlight, but they reflect it thereby reducing the amount of sunlight reaching the Earth’s surface”.

        Thus, they absorb no solar radiation, but simply reflects it awary, with both stratospheric and tropospheric SO2 aerosols having the same climatic effect.

        As a result, when a volcanic eruption inserts SO2 aerosols into the stratosphere, cooling naturally occurs, and when they eventually settle out, warming HAS to occur.

        And when anthropogenic SO2 aerosol emissions increase, cooling similarly occurs, and when they are reduced because of global Clean Air efforts, warming also has to occur.!

        All of the above effects can be seen in sufficiently enlarged plots of anomalous global temperatures.

        Since temperatures predictably change whenever ,atmospheric SO2 levels change, in this instance, correlation IS causation.

        You had stated that “it can simply mean that warmer weather pushes SO2 down”. First, there is no SO2 to push down (being quickly converted to H2SO4), and it doesn’t matter what its altitude is, the climatic effects are the same.

        The reason for Climate change is actually VERY simple: it is due to natural recovery from the Little Ice Age cooling (caused by a period of extensive volcanism), modified by random Volcanic-induced La Ninas and El Ninos, and anthropogenic SO2 aerosol emissions–and since circa 1975, their reduction due to global Clean Air efforts.

        In other words, the modern warming trend has been caused by the environmentalists!

        Earlier, you had been uncertain about the effects of SO2, and I had hoped that my Post would remove those uncertainties. Hopefully, the above has also helped.

  45. Ed Bo May 31, 2018 at 5:37 pm
    Ed, sorry for the slow response. Internet modem failure at the wrong moment .

    But now let’s take the earth itself as our “control mass”. It cannot be absorbing more than 240 [W/m2] * Aearth [m2] from the sun, either directly, or indirectly from what the atmosphere absorbs. But we have good measurements that it is outputting about 500 [W/m2] * Aearth [m2] through radiation, conduction/convection, and evaporation. So that’s an imbalance of ~260 [W/m2] * Aearth.

    I assume you’re referring to something like this :

    The faulty thinking I referred to is the idea that the backradiation is somehow warming the surface, and consequently the (deep) oceans. Subtract the backradiation from the surface radiation and we have a balanced energy budget as well, where the solar heated surface is heating the atmosphere iso the other way around.
    Question to answer is, why is the Average Surface Temperature (AST) so high, ~90K higher than the lunar AST, while the moon absorbs more solar energy than Earth?
    Obvious answer for me is that the continents and oceans cooled down from much higher temperatures (boiling oceans during their creation) and have “stabilized” at a very high temperature in respect to the incoming solar energy.
    Last ~90 million years the oceans have been cooling down some 18K after a massive re-heat by the Ontong Java event. Some 100 million km^3 magma erupting, carrying enough energy to warm all ocean water ~100K.
    So we have our (very) high temperatures thanks to the pre-heated oceans. Lose the oceans and we go to temperatures like on the moon, ~200K.

      • Ben
        Excellent comment. I hope Ed will appreciate it.
        It fits in with my results here. Today, I have lodged a complaint with the ombudsman against the South African broadcasting company for claiming it has been warming when in fact it has not warmed here at all. There has been zero warming (Tmean=0) since 40 years ago. In fact, minima have fallen by -0.8K since 40 years ago. (Average of 10 weather stations, with good daily data going back 40 years)
        If you think about the Gb cycle as a sine wave with a wavelength of 86.5 years then this zero result makes a lot of sense does it not?

      • Ben:

        Unfortunately, you are tripping yourself up by using imprecise common English terminology of “warming”.

        Your first diagram shows “gross” radiative power flows, with the earth’s surface emitting upward a gross of 390 W/m2, of which 350 is absorbed by the atmosphere and clouds. It also shows the atmosphere and clouds emitting downward (“back”) 324 W/m2 to the surface (measured at the surface). You can derive the “net” upward power flow at the surface by taking the difference, and getting (390 – 324) = 66 W/m2. Other revisions of this diagram show 396 – 324 = 72 W/m2.

        Your second diagram shows “net” radiative power flows, with the net flux at the surface given as 342 * (0.15 + 0.06) = 72 W/m2, (roughly) the same. You think you have demonstrated something profound, when you are actually just showing two ways of displaying the EXACT SAME phenomenon.

        You say: “Subtract the backradiation from the surface radiation and we have a balanced energy budget as well, where the solar heated surface is heating the atmosphere [instead of] the other way around.”

        But the first diagram shows the upward surface radiation heating the atmsophere by 350 W/m2, and the downward (“back”) atmospheric radiation heating the surface by a smaller 324 W/m2. So in this case also we see that the “solar heated surface is heating the atmosphere”.

        So is the “backradiation [] somehow warming the surface”? Well, it depends on what you mean by “warming”. Willis had a pretty good post on this about 6 months ago:

        https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/11/can-a-cold-object-warm-a-hot-object/

        His key (and correct) point: [The cold object] can leave the hot object warmer than it would be if the cold object weren’t there. It is essential that you understand this.

        If you could suddenly make the atmosphere transparent to longwave IR, then in the first diagram, the downward arrow of 324 disappears. In the bottom diagram, the upward arrow of (15+6)% widens to about 115%. In either way of looking at it, the surface is outputting far more power than it receives, so its temperature will decrease. So this “back radiation” does leave the (hotter) surface warmer than it would be if it weren’t there, EVEN though the heat transfer from the surface to the absorbent gases in the atmosphere is greater.

        Willis uses the money analogy that I like to use, because money, like energy, is a conserved quantity. Let’s say you want to purchase a $25 item from me, and you hand me a $100 bill. If I decline to give you $75 in change, stating it wouldn’t increase your wealth (because you still would have less money than you started with), you would get angry, and rightfully so. But I am just following your logic!

      • Ed Bo June 4, 2018 at 5:08 pm

        Unfortunately, you are tripping yourself up by using imprecise common English terminology of “warming”.

        Not being a native English speaker this could very well be the case.
        I use warming in the same way as eg Lacis et al 2013:
        “Fourier concluded that much of the thermal radiation emitted by the Earth’s surface was
        being absorbed within the atmosphere, and that some of the absorbed radiation was then re-emitted downward, providing additional warming of the ground, over and above the direct heating by solar radiation.”
        https://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2013/2013_Lacis_la06400p.pdf
        The GHE claims that our cold, thin atmosphere warms (increases the temperature of ) Earth’s surface.
        My objection is to this warming. I envision a more believable explanation for the AST’s on Earth.
        Second objection is to the 255K Effective Temperature for Earth. This is supposedly the radiative balance temperature for a BB receiving the same average solar radiation (~240 W/m^2) as Earth.
        This calculation includes spreading incoming solar evenly around the entire planet. This is not happening.
        Better calculation is spreading incoming solar over halve a sphere, and using 0K as the radiative balance temperature for the night side (~3K if you insist ;-) )
        Results in ~160K for the moon and ~150K for Earth (different albedo)
        Actual AST for the moon(~197K) is rather easy to explain starting from this number.
        So for Earth we need to explain why the AST’s are ~135K higher than the radiative balance BB temperatures.

        I think I can do this, while only using the atmosphere as a simple insulation layer (no backradiation warming).
        I my setup I have an explanation for the Hot and Cold periods in Earth’s history, for the Faint Young Sun Paradox and probably also for the rather fast exit out of glacials we have seen.

        So this “back radiation” does leave the (hotter) surface warmer than it would be if it weren’t there, EVEN though the heat transfer from the surface to the absorbent gases in the atmosphere is greater.

        This is true for any insulation material. Take of your coat on a cold winter day and you will cool down. Doesn’t mean that this coat is warming my body. The warming is done by the body “burning” food for energy.

      • :

        Actually, I think your English is very good. I never suspected you were not a native speaker. I was more referring to the imprecision of common language as compared to careful technical terminology. In my thermodynamics and heat transfer courses, we never talked about “X warming Y” – instead we carefully documented energy transfers.

        You use the analogy of a coat on a cold winter day, which I often use as well. You say it is “insulation material”, but that “doesn’t mean that this coat is warming your body.”

        Let’s break this down carefully. I usually like to go the other way. You are outside on a cold winter day, and you have inadequate cover, and are hypothermic. You put on a coat, and your body temperature increases. In that sense, the coat “warms” you.

        Of course, if you had already died, covering you with the coat would not increase your body temperature, because you are no longer “burning” food for energy. (The coat would slow the corpse’s cooling to ambient.)

        You say the coat is just insulation, but let’s examine what that means at a low level. Your torso’s skin temperature is about 35C, and this is a measure of the average kinetic energy of the molecules in the skin layer.

        Let’s say that the air temperature is 0C (freezing), so the air molecules have substantially less average kinetic energy than your skin. So in all the little molecular collisions between your skin and the air, they overwhelmingly transfer (net) energy from your skin to the air.

        Now you put on the coat, and you soon get to a condition where the inside layer of the coat is about 25C, so these molecules have substantially greater average kinetic energy than the outside air. Now in the molecular collisions between your skin and the inner layer of the coat, substantially less (net) energy is transferred from your skin.

        This is how insulation works at a fundamental level.

        While people these days seldom talk about “back conduction”, Clausius (“father of the 2nd Law) did – he called it the “ascending transmission of conductive heat”. He was referring to the kinetic energy of the colder bodies in the collisions with the warmer bodies. As long as this energy is less than that from the warmer body to the colder body (e.g. your skin to the coat), the 2nd Law is satisfied.

        When we talk about radiative heat transfer, the concept is the same. It’s a bidirectional exchange of energy, with the hot-to-cold transfer (what Clausius called the “descending” transfer) greater than the cold-to-hot “ascending” transfer.

        But with radiative transfer, we can readily measure the flows in both directions – by pointing our sensor down, and then up. So we are more likely to talk about the gross flows here, whereas in conduction, we usually talk about the net flow.

        So at a low level, radiative insulation of a warm body in a cold environment works by exposing the body to a higher level of radiation from the inside of the insulation than it would get from the cold ambient. And in the earth’s case, the ambient is so cold (as you said, ~3K) that a thin layer of radiative insulation makes a big difference.

        But it is very important to understand that when people are talking about “back radiation”, they are talking about a gross, not a net, flow, and that this gross flow is less than the “forward radiation from the warmer body”. And without a separate source of energy – burning food in the case of your body, the sun in the case of the earth – all it could do is slow the rate of temperature decrease to ambient.

        But just as your body’s temperature will be higher with the “back conduction” of your coat than without it, the earth’s surface temperature will be higher with the “back radiation of “greenhouse gases” than without it.

      • Ed Bo June 5, 2018 at 7:44 pm
        Ed, thanks for the extensive reply. Almost missed it, since i don’t receive email notifications anymore.
        Seems we’re mostly on the same page regarding the role of the atmosphere.
        To confirm this:
        given Earth’s AST of ~290K without atmosphere we would lose ~400 W/m^2 (emissivity 1,0) to space which the sun clearly isn’t providing. Thanks to the atmosphere we only lose ~240 W/m^2 which the sun nicely matches.
        Question to answer is: how can we explain the AST of ~290K where the radiative balance BB temperature is ~150K (NOT 255K).
        GHE claims that the backradiation from the atmosphere warms the surface ~33K on top of the 255K Effective temperature the sun supposedly has caused.
        I think this is nonsense and that the reason for our high AST’s are the oceans, combined with the Insulation Effect from the atmosphere.
        The mechanism that explains the changes in the temperature of our oceans is very elegant imo and involves several interacting energy flows.
        Wonder if you’re willing to discuss this. Possibly on this thread, or perhaps better via email.
        My email is : ben at wtrs dot nl

  46. Burl
    in essence
    your theory is similar to the theory we had on the CFC’s
    namely that on dissociation of the CFC the chlorine destroys the ozone layer,
    hence the ozone hole…
    Actually, the stuff we are getting from the sun is sometimes so big that all that ‘CFC contamination’ does not even really matter. It does not even make a dent.
    If they had done their job properly, they would have found [much earlier] that the ozone hole is actually filled with peroxides. And that makes sense. Namely, above the oceans you are much more likely to find OH radicals high up in the atmosphere and upon being bombarded by the most energetic particles from the sun they are much more like to form peroxides than ozone.
    Now look at the spectra of ozone and H2O2?
    So, all people living underneath the ‘ozone hole” are safe as the peroxides is doing the same job as ozone….protect us from the more harmful UV.

    • henryp:

      Your comment on the “peroxide protection” is very interesting and comforting. Does it mean that we could return to using CFC’s?

      Regarding my “theory”, it is actually more than a theory, since it accurately describes what has happened to our climate, both historically and in the present.

      Every temporary increase or decrease in average global temperatures can be traced to decreased or increased levels of SO2 aerosols in the atmosphere, primarily due to volcanic activity, but since the Clean Air era, also due to changing levels of anthropogenic SO2 aerosol emissions.

      These temporary changes are superimposed upon Earth’s natural recovery from the Little Ice Age cooling.

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