More GlobWorms

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Desertrat, Mar 10, 2008.

  1. Desertrat macrumors newbie

    Jul 4, 2003
    Terlingua, Texas
    Note that the scientist is NOT saying warming or climate change isn't happening.

    "Runaway greenhouse theories contradict energy balance equations," Miskolczi states. Just as the theory of relativity sets an upper limit on velocity, his theory sets an upper limit on the greenhouse effect, a limit which prevents it from warming the Earth more than a certain amount.

    How did modern researchers make such a mistake? They relied upon equations derived over 80 years ago, equations which left off one term from the final solution.

    Miskolczi's story reads like a book. Looking at a series of differential equations for the greenhouse effect, he noticed the solution -- originally done in 1922 by Arthur Milne, but still used by climate researchers today -- ignored boundary conditions by assuming an "infinitely thick" atmosphere. Similar assumptions are common when solving differential equations; they simplify the calculations and often result in a result that still very closely matches reality. But not always.

    So Miskolczi re-derived the solution, this time using the proper boundary conditions for an atmosphere that is not infinite. His result included a new term, which acts as a negative feedback to counter the positive forcing. At low levels, the new term means a small difference ... but as greenhouse gases rise, the negative feedback predominates, forcing values back down."

    Does anybody here know definitively about the statement concerning the 1922 equations?

  2. pdham macrumors member

    Jan 28, 2003
    Interesting read; thanks for posting. Hopefully I can look at the published piece later.

    A couple comments through. This article, much like most discussion about climate change, seems to be assuming the debate is between two camps.
    1) climate change is naturally occuring in a cyclical fasion so no worries; and 2) climate change is caused by human influence on the environment.

    In reality those scientists that see climate change as a threat acknowledge the cyclical patterns in both temperature and C02 levels, but also present recent data which seems to imply we are at a peak in a warming cycle and the CO2 levels (which mirror temperature cycles closely) are increasing well beyond previous peak levels. These implies that there is an external force causing the CO2 levels to increase past previous cyclical peaks - humans.

    Thinking about it this way, his theory seem to have a few problems (haven't actually read the paper yet). First, if he is using historic data to derive the feedback value then he isn't considering human interference, just natural cycles. Secondly, the article asserts that his theory is an answer to :
    Problem is in the past here was no human impact which seems to be causing a spike beyond cyclical peaks.

    Again, the paleoclimatic record will not account for the current impact of humans.

    I am certainly not saying the patterns we are witnessing are solely a result of humans (nor are other climatologists), but ignoring the current set of circumstances and basing theory solely on observable historical data, which is what he appears to have done, will of course result in a theory which says we will see a peak and reduction in current trends.
  3. juanm macrumors 65816


    May 1, 2006
    Fury 161
    The problem lies also in the speed at which this is happening, and I don't see where he states how high is his warming ceiling. A few degrees could change a lot

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