State of Innovation

Patents and Innovation Economics

The Greenhouse Effect does Not Exist: The Scientific Fallacy Underlying the Whole Anthropomorphic Global Warming Story

Anthropomorphic Global Warming (AGW) is based on the greenhouse effect.  Here is how the greenhouse effect is explained.  The Earth is modeled as a blackbody.  A blackbody is an object that absorbs all the radiation that impinges on it and does not reflect any light.  Such a body in thermal equilibrium will emit what is called blackbody radiation.  The Stefan–Boltzmann law can be used to determine the temperature of a blackbody.  Specifically it states that the power emitted per unit area of the surface of a black body is directly proportional to the fourth power of its absolute temperature.

I = σT4 or rearranged  T = (I/σ)1/4

I is in watts per meter squared

T is the temperature in Kelvin

σ is the Stefan-Boltzmann constant (5.670367(13)×10−8 W⋅m−2⋅K−4)

here is website that will do the calculation for you http://byjus.com/stefan-boltzmann-law-calculator/

 

The greenhouse effect then assumes that Earth is in thermal equilibrium with the Sun and therefore the total radiative (electromagnetic) energy received from the Sun less what is reflected must equal the blackbody radiation from the Earth.  The greenhouse effect hypothesis recognizes that the Earth only receives solar energy over half its surface, however it radiates over its whole surface area.  Because of this the greenhouse effect hypothesis spreads the solar radiation over the whole surface of the Earth.

I = Is x πR2/(4πR2) = 343 W/m2

                                Is – is the solar radiation hitting the Earth and is 1370 W/m2

                                R is the radius of the Earth in meters

 

Since clouds, the atmosphere, and the ground reflect some of the light, which is called albedo, this Intensity level is further reduced by 30% or 240 W/m2.  This intensity is put into the Stefan-Boltzman equation and returns a temperature of 255°K, which is negative -18°C or about 0° Fahrenheit.  Based on this analysis it is clear that something else must be happening, because the Earth’s average temperature[1] is around 16°C (60° F).  This makes a very convincing argument for some sort of greenhouse effect.  After all we have all walked into a greenhouse on a cold day and noticed how much warmer it is than the outside temperature.

According to the greenhouse effect the reason Earth is at 16°C instead of -18°C is because of the heat absorbing components of our atmosphere.  These greenhouse gases reflect the infrared light emitted from the Earth, thus trapping this extra energy.

greenhouseeffect

 

Or here is a more technical diagram.

 

ghemath

If you want to see the math associated with this model, you can find it in Chapter 7.3 of Introduction to Atmospheric Chemistry, by Daniel J. Jacob, Princeton University Press, 1999.

Without this greenhouse effect the Earth would be very cold according to its advocates.  I have to admit that I found these arguments convincing.

Before I explain the errors in the above analysis, here is something that should cast a little doubt that the above analysis makes sense.  The moon is about the same distance from the Sun as Earth and its temperature varies from 106°C during the day to -173°C during the night.  Note that there appears to be some variation of opinion on the temperatures of the moon, but 106°C appears to be on the low side.  Since the moon is essentially the same distance from the Sun the solar irradiance (energy) is about the same as the Earth receives.  The moon has essentially no atmosphere, its atmospheric pressure is around 3×10−15 atm, which means it has an atmospheric pressure that is around a 1000 trillion times less than Earth.  Since the moon has almost no atmosphere there is nothing on the moon to trap the blackbody radiation from the surface of the moon and therefor the moon’s temperature ought to be close to the -18°C that is calculated by the greenhouse effect for Earth with a small variation for having a different albedo.  If we assumed that the moon was perfect black body, using the greenhouse effect method of calculating the surface temperature, the moon’s surface temperature would be about 5°C.  Way off from the observed 106°C or higher.

The empirically data from the moon shows that something is awry with the greenhouse explanation for the temperature of Earth.  The first mistake in the greenhouse explanation is spreading the solar radiation over the whole surface of the Earth.

I = Is x πR2/(4πR2)

The Earth does radiate out over its whole surface and the total energy of electromagnetic emissions from the Earth has to equal the total energy of the electromagnetic emissions absorbed by the Earth or its temperature would be increasing (decreasing).  None of this justifies setting the emissions equal to each other over the whole Earth.  On the sunny side of the Earth it absorbs net energy and on the dark side of the Earth it emits net energy.  This is why the night time temperatures are lower than the day time temperatures.  The greenhouse model assumes that the temperature of the Earth is uniform (same during the day and night).  This mistake also occurs because the greenhouse hypothesis assumes Earth is in thermal equilibrium with the Sun which is a condition for the blackbody radiation calculations.  Again this would require the Earth surface to have a uniform temperature (day, night, poles, equator), which is clearly nonsense.

The second big mistake of the greenhouse effect analysis is misunderstanding heat transfer.  “The direction of heat transfer is from a region of high temperature to another region of lower temperature.”[2]  “The three fundamental modes of heat transfer are conduction, convection and radiation. Heat transfer, the flow of energy in the form of heat, is a process by which a system’s internal energy is changed.”[3]  According to the greenhouse effect analysis, somehow the cold atmosphere is warming up the hotter surface of the Earth, which violates the second law of thermodynamics.  The atmosphere near the Earth gets colder with altitude.  It does not exceed the Earth’s temperature until the troposphere at about 75,000 feet altitude.  Any radiative heating from the troposphere would have to get through the denser atmosphere that according to the greenhouse effect are good at absorbing the long wavelength light that is supposed to be heating up the Earth’s surface.  The advocates of the greenhouse effect never really explain the fine details of how this could occur.

There are three main mechanisms of heat transfer: conduction, convection and radiation.  Radiation is mainly important only “for very hot objects, or for objects with a large temperature difference.”[4]  Neither of these is true for the atmosphere and the Earth’s surface.  In addition, the atmosphere is gas, which allows for easy convention and therefore convention is likely the dominate heat transfer mechanism between the Earth’s surface and the atmosphere.  This is what causes high pressure and low pressure systems and most of our weather.  Another point just glossed over by the greenhouse effect analysis.

So how does the atmosphere effect Earth’s surface temperature?

Compared to the moon, which has a mean daytime temperature of 123C and mean nighttime temperature of -233C [a diurnal range of 356C!], the presence of Earth’s atmosphere serves to greatly cool during the day and retain warmth during the night to reduce the diurnal temperature range to only ~11C.[5]

The atmosphere acts to slow the warming during the day and slow the cooling during the day.  The atmosphere acts like an imperfect heat reservoir or heat bath, absorbing excess heat from the Earth’s surface during the day and releasing excess heat in the atmosphere during the night.[6]

Without the greenhouse effect the whole Anthropomorphic Global Warming hypothesis falls apart.  Since a cold object cannot transfer heat to a hotter object, there can be no net radiative energy from the atmosphere that heats up the Earth’s surface.  Thus it is irrelevant whether the gases in the atmosphere are good at absorbing infrared wavelengths of light.

The effect of increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere on temperature is so trivial as to be immeasurable.  CO2 makes up about 0.04% or 400 parts per million (PPM), which is trivial and does not add to the heat reservoir of the atmosphere.

 

     * There is no greenhouse effect

      * Without the greenhouse effect Anthropomorphic Global Warming cannot Exist.

 

[1] Actually, the term “Earth’s average Temperature” makes no sense.  Do you just add up the temperature readings around the world and divide by the number of readings?  Most temperature readings are in the Northern Hemisphere and almost none are at the poles.  Perhaps with Satellite readings you can make more sense of this term, but you still have the correctly weighting the temperature by the area or volume that it applies to.

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_transfer, accessed January 24, 2017.

[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_transfer, accessed January 24, 2017.

[4] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_transfer, accessed January 24, 2017.

[5] Why can’t radiation from a cold body make a hot body hotter?, http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.mx/2014/11/why-cant-radiation-from-cold-body-make.html, accessed January 24, 2017.

[6] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermal_reservoir, accessed January 27, 2017.

February 5, 2017 Posted by | physics | , , , , | 2 Comments

Atlas Shrugged –Movie Review

I just saw the movie Atlas Shrugged, based on Ayn Rand’s book with the same title.  The movie has divided the book into three parts and this was the first of the three parts.  I thought the movie did a very good job and stayed true to the book.  I purposely did not re-read the book before I saw the movie.  Like almost any movie, the book is better than movie.  The way the characters looked in the readers’ mind are never the way they look in the movie.  My wife thought the acting was just okay, but it did not detract from value of the movie.  The theater I saw the movie in was about 75% full (mid day) and there was a hearty round of applause at the end.  As you would expect, some of the speeches and characters will immediately strike you as being based on people in today’s news.  For instance, Wesley Mouch looks like and talks like a Barney Frank.  The speeches about “shared sacrifice” sound like our communist president’s (Obama) speech on the budget, April, 14, 2011. Rand’s rational selfishness and the absurdity of altruism are as clearly delineated,  as in the book.  The movie ends with a very dramatic scene, providing a good ending point, and whetting the appetite for Part II.

One thing that struck me was how the State Science Institute’s propaganda against Rearden Metal is almost exactly like the Global Warming debate today.  While the Luddite attitude toward genetically modified food might seem like a better analogy, it does not have the same political dynamics – at least not yet.  The scientist, Dr. Robert Stadler, justifies his unscientific position (lying) because it is necessary in order for the State Science Institute to continue to receive government funding.  I remember that when I read this passage in the book 25 or so years ago, I was reluctant to accept that science could be perverted by politics.  However, the last 25 years have provided me with numerous examples where so called “science” is really propaganda- funding from the federal government to ensure that the organization continues to receive funding from their political masters.  For instance, the manipulation of data by Climate Change advocates to ignore the medieval ice age (little ice age) among numerous other lies.  This is just one of many examples where these so called scientists ignore or manipulate the data to fit their conclusions.  This is not science, it is propaganda.  Note both sides of the political spectrum behave in this moral depraved activity – see Creationism.  Not surprisingly, the religious right was no more a fan of Ayn Rand than the religious left.

If you approach this movie as a separate artistic piece from the book you will find it highly entertaining and enlightening.  I hope that people in their 20s and 30s can transcend the focus on industrial technologies opposed to  the information age.

You will love this movie if you understand the value of freedom and reason.  If you are an intellectual or economic leech, you will hate this movie.

April 15, 2011 Posted by | Innovation | , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Science or Religion: Environmental Doomsday Theories

A fundamental difference between religion and science is that a scientific theory is testable, while a religion is not.  Religion ignores facts and believes in faith.  All environmental doomsday theories are religions, not science.  This is true no matter how much they disguise their religion with scientific jargon or call what they are doing a science.

Before I examine some of these environmental doomsday theories, let’s look at another pseudo science.  Creationists say creationism is a science and they attempt to include scientific jargon, including their attempt to show probabilistically human life is impossible.  One version of this idea is that given the number of base pairs in the human genome and that even if one of them were wrong humans would not exist, it is therefore impossible that their was not a Devine hand.  Of course, it turned out that much of the genetic material is irrelevant and that there are redundancies in the encoding of the human genome.  Did the Creationist admit defeat?  No, because it’s a religion not a science.  The same is true of Global Warming (Climate Change), Global Cooling, Malthus, Club of Rome Limits of Growth, Population Bomb, Nuclear Winter, etc.  None of these hypothesis are testable.  The proponents cannot name a single test that would prove their hypothesis incorrect.

Limits of Growth

In this post, I will only discuss the ideas related to some limit to human prosperity.  The idea that humans are doomed to starve to death was first proposed by Thomas Malthus in 1798.  Human population was about 1 billion when Malthus wrote this and today we have a population of about 7 billion.  In 1800 a much larger percentage of people were at risk of starving to death than today.  Nevertheless this did not stop Paul Ehrlich from writing The Population Bomb in 1968 warning of mass starvation in 1970s and 1980s.  When Erhlich wrote The Population Bomb the world had population of about 3.5 billion.  Of course, Ehrlich turned out to be wrong, just as Malthus had.  Note that Mr. Ehrlich also believed we faced imminent Global Cooling at the time, now he is apostle for Global Warming.  How many times can a person be wrong?  Has Ehrlich admitted that his earlier hypothesizes were clearly incorrect?  No.  Have the mass starvation proponents admitted their ideas are incorrect?  No, because their theories are not science they are a religion.  No facts will convince them to give up their irrational argument that we are about to run out of food.  See Earth Economist: The food bubble is about to burst.  The argument in this article is that we are about to run out of water for agriculture.  This is nonsense.  The amount of water on the Earth is essentially the same as it was a billion years ago.  Water has never been where we want it or necessarily in the form we want it.  This is not a resource problem, this is an infrastructure/invention problem.

Club of Rome

This was a book commissioned by the Club of Rome.  The Club of Rome is a think tank and the book “Limits of Growth” was published in 1972 and based its predictions on a computer model.  This model did not include the Internet, Personal Computers, email, genetic engineering, heart transplants, etc.  The model did not include the single way that humans increase wealth – inventions (new technologies).  The book was widely criticized by people such as Robert Solow, Nobel Prize economist, as having a weak base of data.  The book has recently been updated.  I bet it still does not take inventions into account.  The Club of Rome’s prophecies have been no better than Paul Ehrlich.  Is there any fact that if true would prove this hypothesis wrong?  No, because this is a religion not science

All these doomsday prophecies are religions.

 

Limiting Freedom

All these proposals demand that human freedom be limited to deal with these doomsday religious theories.  This makes them somewhat self-fulfilling prophecies.  The way human’s create wealth is by the use of their mind and the ability to act on their thoughts.  Or as Ayn Rand said in Capitalism” The Unknown Ideal, “reason is man’s means of survival.  Limiting freedom, limits the ability of people to create wealth.  For more information see Sustainability isn’t Sustainable.

 

While Ronald Reagan pandered to the religious right, he still nailed this issue.

Only when the human spirit is allowed to invent and create, only when individuals are given a personal stake in deciding economic policies and benefiting from their success — only then can societies remain economically alive, dynamic, progressive, and free. Trust the people.

 

February 15, 2011 Posted by | -Economics | , , , , , , | 30 Comments

Climate Change and Innovation

President Obama travels to the climate conference at Copenhagen this week.  How would limiting CO2 emissions effect innovation?  The president has promised that:

U.S. emissions in 2050 will be 83 percent below 2005 levels. If so, 2050 emissions will equal those in 1910, when there were 92 million Americans. But there will be 420 million Americans in 2050, so Obama’s promise means that per capita emissions then will be about what they were in 1875.[1].

In order to achieve this goal will require significant advances in technology or significant restrictions on the activities of U.S. residents.  The argument that limiting CO2 emission will increase innovation are based on the idea that government mandates stimulate innovation by businesses to meet the directive.  The problem with this argument is that it ignores the innovation that businesses did not undertake because they had to spend their research and development budgets to meet a government directive.  Since it is unlikely that the U.S can achieve these goals without also limiting the activities of its residents, the CO2 emission goals set by the President will limit economic activity.  According the Rate Law of Innovation, any limitation on the goals or means of innovation reduces the rate of innovation.  A weaker economy is also likely to reduce the number of innovators slowing the rate of innovation.  Continue reading

December 7, 2009 Posted by | Innovation | , , , , , , | 6 Comments