Bob Fernley-Jones: Trenberth Trouble – the radiative question

Posted: February 8, 2012 by tallbloke in atmosphere, climate, Energy, Incompetence

DRAFT 5, 8/Feb/12. by Bob Fernley-Jones AKA Bob_FJ

Here is the Trenberth et al energy budget diagram as extracted from their 2009 paper, it being an update of that in the IPCC report of 2007 (& also 2001):


The unusual aspect of this diagram is that instead of directly showing
radiative Heat
Transfer
from the surface, it gives their depiction of the greenhouse
effect in terms of radiation flux or Electro-Magnetic Radiation, (AKA; EMR
and a number of other descriptions of conflict between applied scientists
and physicists). EMR is a form of energy that is sometimes
confused with HEAT
. It will be explained later, that the 396 W/m^2
surface radiation depicted above has very different behaviour to HEAT.
Furthermore, temperature change in matter can only take place when there is
a HEAT transfer, or work-done,
regardless of how much EMR is whizzing around in the atmosphere.

A more popular schematic from various divisions around NASA and Wikipedia
etc, is next, and it avoids the issue above:

Figure 2
NASA

Returning to the Trenberth et al paper, (link is in line 1
above), they give that the 396 W/m2 of EMR emitted from
the surface in Fig.1 is calculated primarily by using the Stefan–Boltzmann
law, and global year average conditions.
Putting aside a few
lesser but rather significant issues therein, it is useful to know that:

1) The Stefan-Boltzmann law (S-B) describes the total
emission from a flat surface
that is equally radiated in all directions,
(is isotropic/hemispherical). Stefan found this via experimental
measurement, and later his student Boltzmann derived it mathematically.

2) The validity of equally distributed hemispherical EMR is
demonstrated quite well by observing the Sun. (with eye protection). It
appears to be a flat disc of uniform brightness, but of course it is a
sphere, and at its outer edge, the radiation towards Earth is tangential
from its apparent surface, not vertical. It is not a perfect demonstration
because of a phenomenon called limb darkening, due to the Sun not having a
definable surface, but actually plasma with opacity effects. However, it is
generally not apparent to the eye and the normally observed (shielded)
eyeball observation is arguably adequate for purpose here.

3) Whilst reportedly the original Stefan lab test was for a
small flat body radiating into a hemisphere, its conclusions can be extended
to larger areas by simple addition of many small flat bodies of collectively
flat configuration, because of the ability of EMR waves to pass through each
other. This can be demonstrated by car driving at night, when approaching
headlights do not change in brightness as a consequence of your own
headlights opposing them. (not to be confused with any dazzling effects and
fringe illumination)

4) My sketch below demonstrates how radiation is at its
greatest concentration in the lateral directions. It applies to both the
initial S-B hemispherical surface radiation and to subsequent spherical
radiation from the atmosphere itself.

5) Expanding on the text in Figure 3:
Air temperature decreases with altitude, (with lapse rate), but if we take
any thin layer of air over a small region, and time interval, and with
little turbulence, the temperature in the layer can be treated as constant.
Yet, the most concentrated radiation within the layer is horizontal in all
directions, but with a net heat transfer of zero. Where the radiation is
not perfectly horizontal, adjacent layers will provide interception of it.

A more concise way of looking at it is with vectors, which put simply is a
mathematical method for analysing parameters that possess directional information. Figure 4,
takes a random ray of EMR (C) at a modestly shallow angle, and analyses its
vertical and horizontal vector components. The length of each vector is
proportional to the power of the ray, in that direction, such that A + B =
C. Of course this figure is only in 2D, and there are countless
multi-directional rays in 3D, with the majority approaching the horizontal,
through 360 planar degrees, where the vertical components also approach
zero.

6) Trenberth’s figure 1 gives that 65% of the HEAT loss
from the surface is via thermals and evapo-transpiration. What is not
elaborated is that as a consequence of this upward HEAT transfer, additional
infrared radiation takes place in the air column by virtue of it being
warmed. This initially starts as spherical emission and absorption, but as
the air progressively thins upwards, absorption slows, and that radiation
ultimately escapes directly to space. Thus, the infrared radiation
observable from space has complex sources from various altitudes, but has no
labels to say where it came from, making some of the attributions
“difficult”.

DISCUSSION; So what to
make of this
?

The initial isotropic S-B surface emission, (Trenberth’s global 396
W/m2), would largely be absorbed by the greenhouse gases
instantaneously near the surface. (ignoring some escaping directly to space
through the so-called “atmospheric window”). However, a large proportion of
the initial S-B 396 surface emission would be continuously lateral, at the
Trenberth imposed constant conditions, without any heat transfer, and its
horizontal vectors CANNOT be part of the alleged 396 vertical flux, because
they are outside of the vertical field of view.

After the initial atmospheric absorptions, the S-B law, which applied
initially to the surface, no longer applies to the air above. (although some
clouds are sometimes considered to be not far-off from a black body). Most
of the air’s initial absorption/emission is close to the surface, but the
vertical distribution range is large, because of considerable variation in
the photon free path
lengths
. These vary with many factors, a big one being the regional and
more powerful GHG water vapour level range which varies globally between
around ~0 to ~4%. (compared with CO2 at a somewhat constant ~0.04%). The
total complexities in attempting to model/calculate what may be happening
are huge and beyond the scope of this here, but the point is that every
layer of air at ascending altitudes continuously possesses a great deal of
lateral radiation that is partly driven by the S-B hemispherical 396, but
cannot therefore be part of the vertical 396 claimed in Figure 1.

CONCLUSIONS:

The vertical radiative flux portrayed by Trenberth et al of 396 W/m^2
ascending from the surface to a high cloud level is not supported by first
principle considerations. (including the GHE) The S-B 396 W/m^2 is by
definition isotropic as also is its ascending progeny, with always
prevailing horizontal vector components that are not in the field of view of
the vertical. The remaining vertical components of EMR from that source are
thus less than 396 W/m^2.

It is apparent that HEAT loss from the surface via convective/evaporative
processes must add to the real vertical EMR loss from the surface, and as
observed from space. It may be that there is a resultant of similar order
to 396 W/m^2, but that is
NOT the S-B radiative process described by Trenberth
.

This assumes that the consensus theory on the GHE is correct, unless that
too contains a paradox.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

ADDENDUM FOR
AFICIONADOS

I Seek your
advice

In figure 5 below, note that the NIMBUS 4 satellite data on the left must be
for ALL sources of
radiation as seen from space, in this case, at some point over the tropical
Pacific. The total emissions, amount to the integrated area under the
curve, which unfortunately is not given. However, for comparison purposes,
a MODTRAN calculator, looking down from 100 Km gives some interesting
information for the figure, which is further elaborated in the tables below.
Unfortunately the calculator does not give global data or average cloud/sky
conditions, so we have apples and pears to compare, not only with Nimbus,
but also with Trenberth. However, they all seem to be of somewhat similar
order, and see the additional tabulations.

Compare MODTRAN & “Trenberth”, looking down from 2
altitudes, plus Surface Temperature
Location Kelvin 10 metres 100 Km. (Centigrade)
Tropical Atmosphere 300K 419 W/m^2 288 W/m^2 (27C)
Mid-latitude Summer 294K 391 W/m^2 280
W/m^2
(21C)
Mid-latitude Winter 272K 291 W/m^2 228
W/m^2
(-1C)
Sub-Arctic Winter 257K 235 W/m^2 196 W/m^2 (-16C)
Trenberth Global 288K ? 396
W/m^2
239 W/m^2 (15C ?)
Compare MODTRAN & “Trenberth”, looking UP from 4
altitudes: W/m^2
Location From 10 m From 2 Km From 4Km From 6Km
Tropical Atmosphere 348 252 181 125
Mid-latitude Summer 310 232 168 118
Mid-latitude Winter 206 161 115 75
Sub-Arctic Winter 162 132 94 58
Trenberth Global 333 Shown as coming
from high cloud area (= BS according to MODTRAN)
Comments
  1. Hans says:

    It should be noticed that the energy balance would be the same for any number of “upwelling IR – downwelling IR” being equal to 63 W/m^2.
    There is no need for a S-B law to calculate the 396 W/m^2. any arbitrary number would do as well. The NASA energy (in fact power per surface unit) budget shows this fact.

  2. tallbloke says:

    So is it possible that radiation in the atmosphere is more effective at shifting energy laterally than vertically? Maybe this is of some benefit in reducing windiness, since more energy is transported between warmer and colder areas this way?

  3. BenAW says:

    Just linked to this article in the Aussie Dan discussion. Seems relevant here as well:
    http://principia-scientific.org/publications/New_Concise_Experiment_on_Backradiation.pdf

    Prof. Nahle has interesting things to say about the energy budget, and what pyrgeometers etc. actually measure.

  4. Richard says:

    The power of any sideways component can be easily observed on a cold day between dawn and sunrise. Some of the overnight frost can disappear before the sun crosses the horizon.

  5. mkelly says:

    Mr. Jones says: “Furthermore, temperature change in matter can only take place when there is
    a HEAT transfer, or work-done,”

    Here, Here. There are 3 other items I think are of note.
    1. The bait and switch. The Trenebeth chart uses heat transfer equations to get the radiation to the earth then switches to energy balance. Ask any of the chart followers to show in a radiative heat transfer equation where to input back radiation and they can’t.
    2. Since pure reflection is more effiecient than absorbtion/emission the chart is really saying that a thing can heat itself.
    3. Adding/subtracting of radiation energy is just wrong. The single determing factor is T. If I add a match to a blow torch flame it will not get hotter.

  6. Chris M says:

    No matter how many times I look at Trenberth’s cartoon it doesn’t make any more sense to me. What it seems to be saying is that there is a hugely efficient hamster wheel, driven by GHGs, that sends most (333/396 = 84%) of the surface emitted IR back to the surface, round and round we go.

  7. Mydogsgotnonose says:

    The Trenberth analysis is fundamentally wrong in a key aspect of the physics. The assumption that the radiated flux is that for a black body at the average temperature of the Earth’s surface, which looks to me an attempt to establish a boundary condition, assumes that the convected and thermo-transpiration heat losses do not introduce an internal temperature gradient and/or otherwise affect the IR density of states on the surface.which cause the IR quanta to be emitted at particular energies.

    The importance of this is that the interpretation that the 63 W/m^2 net IR transfer, hot to cold, is 396 – 333 ‘back radiation’ has the implied assumption that the 333 W/m^2 is converted to heat in the solid. So, each time you raise CO2 concentration assuming 100% direct thermalisation [which is impossible], ‘back radiation’ increase causes the emitted sum radiation to rise.

    This is the cause of the predicted ‘high feedback’, not shown experimentally so it’s an artefact of incorrect thermal modeling. The reality is that ‘Prevost Exchange Energy’ to give it its proper name, simply blocks the IR density of states to thermal activation from the molecular vibrational continuum, selectively because the emission from the atmosphere is the GHGs.

    So, it’s a form of heat transfer throttle with the photons being part of the continuum to be ejected at random times or to transfer the energy back to the solid. This is a fine point to many but it’s the cause of 3-5 times exaggeration of predicted warming above reality even assuming most of that is from GHG-AGW, which is isn’t!

  8. tallbloke says:

    MDGNN: Interesting comment. It introduces stuff about radiative effects most don’t know about. Including me. Feel free to tell us more.

  9. wayne says:

    Mydogsgotnonose, when you say “simply blocks the IR density of states to thermal activation from the molecular vibrational continuum”, are you more simply saying, in a spectrum context, that the Planck curve radiances near the surface cannot be violated (therefore line emissions suppressed, even those of CO2’s ~15 micron lines)? This would be due to the Planck curve in the spectrum being already maxed out at 15 microns.

  10. wayne says:

    Chris M says:
    February 8, 2012 at 8:16 pm
    ] No matter how many times I look at Trenberth’s cartoon it doesn’t make any more sense to me. What it seems to be saying is that there is a hugely efficient hamster wheel, driven by GHGs, that sends most (333/396 = 84%) of the surface emitted IR back to the surface, round and round we go. [

    Right. And in your room it is basically 100% recycled. Remove the ceiling and roof and you would pretty much match that of the Earth. There are six ‘walls’ in your room. You just opened one to let radiation upward and out. Notice how close 5/6=83% is to the 84% your mentioned above? Does that mean anything to you?

  11. Doug Cotton says:

    There are two huge mistakes in applying the Stefan-Boltzmann Law to the Earth’s surface.

    (1) The surface does not in any way act like a black (or grey) body because it is not insulated from its surrounds. Only the whole Earth-plus-atmosphere system acts as a blackbody when seen from space, but this includes a lot of radiation from the atmosphere, because probably more than half the thermal energy transferring from the surface to the atmosphere does so by diffusion, conduction, evaporation or chemical processes. So this leaves far less to be radiated by the surface, and so the S-B Law can’t be used.

    (2) The use of a flat Earth model with assumed uniform radiation (rather that day/night variations) also leads to totally wrong mean temperature calculations, even if it were all radiation from the surface.

    Hence that -18 degree C figure is garbage.

  12. Bob Fernley-Jones says:

    tallbloke @ February 8, 12:58 pm

    So is it possible that radiation in the atmosphere is more effective at shifting energy laterally than vertically? Maybe this is of some benefit in reducing windiness, since more energy is transported between warmer and colder areas this way?

    Rog,
    You’ve made my head hurt.
    I always thought that the massive heat transfer from the tropics towards the poles was a mere consequence of atmospheric and oceanic advection. Well…..you know….. but with a few other things like chaotic low and high pressure weather systems, Hadley cells, and Enso and stuff putting their oars in.

    It never occurred to me that lateral radiation might also be involved. My going-in position is that for any homogenous (small) package of air, the north-south (N-S) emissions and absorptions equate to zero heat transfer. However, any adjacent (N-S) REGIONS will (on average) tend to be cooler, and hence there should be a chaotic tendency for heat transfer (N-S).

    Also, if we accept some elementary quantum theory; whilst the lateral absorption and emission takes place over relatively very short distances, with varying photon free path lengths and energy levels, around these broadly conceived terminations, replicating events should occur, not necessarily from the same molecules, or at the same energy levels. (For one thing, there is theoretical thermalization of the non-GHG molecules in a vastly greater number of molecular collisional events). But, whatever, it strikes me that these new emissions, in their countless billions, occurring at incredible speed, accumulatively would also likely result in (N-S) heat transfer.

    On the other hand, I may be struck with a message from an angel whilst in the shower in the morning!

  13. Bob Fernley-Jones says:

    To all:
    I see on my computer that the body text in my article above is restricted to a narrow width, and that text lines are sometimes shortened, including the splitting of embedded links onto separate lines, making it unprofessionally untidy to read. Also some headings are split onto two lines even when only of few words, which looks daft. Does anyone else see this?

    Roger,
    This would seem to be html naughties at play; one of those mysteries like EMR. (naughty photons). I would like you to try the reblog feature, and I would watch for a WordPress Email alert, although me being in Melbourne (Oz) that would likely be o/night.

    Cheers

  14. Chris M says:

    wayne says:
    February 8, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    “Right. And in your room it is basically 100% recycled. Remove the ceiling and roof and you would pretty much match that of the Earth. There are six ‘walls’ in your room. You just opened one to let radiation upward and out. Notice how close 5/6=83% is to the 84% your mentioned above? Does that mean anything to you?”

    Not a great deal. You are saying that the only way IR radiation can ultimately escape from the earth is up and out to space, which is true, but it does not follow that 84% of that outgoing IR must be recycled by the atmosphere. In what way is the atmosphere remotely analogous to a roofless room? It is a seamless continuum surrounding the earth’s surface, with no significant ‘walls’ or barriers, and continually in motion, up down, laterally, every which way. Your 5/6 proposition seems to me to be an irrelevant coincidence, although you are welcome to try to persuade me otherwise.

  15. Hans says:

    A professsor Claes Johnsson at Royal Institute of Technolgy, Stockholm has written a long paper on “Computional Blackbody Radiation” and he is not fond of the Trenberth energy budget diagram (also adopted by NASA this time). I am studying the paper which I just found with special interest since I got my civil engineering exam at the same Institute. It is a thrill to see why he considers “back radiation incorrect and 100% unphysical”.
    See http://www.csc.kth.se/~cgjoh/blackbodyslayer.pdf
    I might come back to this paper when having read it carefully.

  16. Joe's World says:

    TB,

    At 48 degree latitude, our planet’s centrifugal force is too weak to pull water on the planets surface. This is where the water moves north and south.Speed is the factor in the strength of centrifugal force and being an orb, their is a lack of velocity as the planet gets smaller to the poles.
    The atmosphere has a different density than the planet so has different parameters with velocity and centrifugal force.The velocity difference do give you circular motion ALONG WITH centrifugal force as one side of the bend of the planet will always have slightly more strength than the other at any given point. This generates everything from snow flakes to tornadoes.
    If centrifugal force DID NOT exist, all flow would go to the poles in rotational motion.

  17. tchannon says:

    Bottom of the blog page Ben references is a link to evidence of poor metrology although I haven’t seen the instrument specification; it might say it is poor.

    http://academiaraetica.net/pdf/symposien/YSC_abstracts_pdf/32_YSC_Wacker.pdf

  18. Mydogsgotnonose says:

    A little bit of additional thought to my contribution above.

    1.I agree that if you have the Earth’s surface at 15°C, it will in principle emit radiation for that temperature according to the S-B equation. However, the emissivity will not be unity, e.g. for dry sand it’s about 0.85 making 331 W/m^2. However, much of that energy will be part of a de facto standing wave, more later, which can do no thermodynamic work.

    2. What is missed out by most people is that the conversion of photonic energy to heat [warmer to colder body only] is a two stage process. First the photon must be absorbed by exactly the correct quantum acceptor in terms of the internal oscillation of a molecular entity in a surface, loosely-bonded, state. Then that energy has to couple with the molecular vibrational energy in the bulk.

    3. This is no different to what happens at the warmer body to quantised photonic energy received from the cooler body except that because more surface states are produced from transfer of internal energy to the surface than are produced by absorption of received photons and once absorbed, all quanta lose their source identity, there can be no conversion of any of the energy from the cooler body to sensible heat in the warmer body. This is similar to the reasoning by Claes Johnson in one reference above, but I’m a materials’ guy!

    4. The logic shows that there can be no ‘back radiation’ expressed as an increase in the energy emitted by the warmer body above the net radiative transfer. One way of thinking about this is to imagine that the Prevost exchange process is in effect a standing wave connecting the IR density of states of the emitter-absorber pair at the speed of light. At equal thermodynamic temperature, there is no net radiation.

    5. I am toying now with a new idea which is that you can also connect the surface vibrational states which temporarily store the IR quanta before putting them back into heat or launching them into space, to adsorbed GHG molecules thus avoiding the intermediate radiation stage! The beauty of this idea is that the GHG molecule is then able to transfer to the gas phase thus acting as a parallel mode of heat transport for the specific energy needed to be absorbed in the general atmosphere. The implication is that for those specific frequencies, the effective emissivity is reduced, and as this is the main cause of net.radiative heat transport, still further reduces net radiation.

    6. On top of this there is also the general conduction and convection process involving Maxwell-Boltzmann statistics which may give a general temperature fall of the surface.

    Conclusion: ‘Back Radiation’ is an idiotic idea not seen in any other scientific discipline. I hope I have shown why it can’t occur by a simple statistical approach rather than that which the physicists use to confuse people [cut off radiation!]

  19. Mydogsgotnonose says:

    In addition to the above, to read up about the practicalities of IR and gases, look at the works of Hoyt C. Hottell.,

  20. Tenuc says:

    Some interesting research done for the military on IR reflectance from natural surfaces (Thermal infrared characterization of ground targets and backgrounds). Some snippets from the book available here which illustrate well the difficulty of quantifying reflectance as it has a huge dependency on the time of day, season and physical make-up of the surface of Earth.

    Averaging is not a useful pursuit towards understanding in these situations.

  21. wayne says:

    B_Happy, that was my only point, they are measuring the radiative brightness temperatures and not the literal surface temperature and pressure along with all of the necessary assumptions used when trying to estimate what an actual thermometer would read if it was placed on the surface. One day we might get an actual temperature and pressure on some of Jupiter’s moons and it would be really great if we could get something like five across the a latitude spread. I mean NASA just found out just how far the moon’s temperatures have been portrayed for decades.

  22. mkelly says:

    Mydogsgotnonose says:
    February 9, 2012 at 3:23 pm
    In addition to the above, to read up about the practicalities of IR and gases, look at the works of Hoyt C. Hottell.,

    I have asked several folks like Mr. Shore what emissivity he would use for CO2 at 1 atm and 288K so that could be inputted to a radiative heat transfer equation. He never replies. This is one of the most important points in this “IR can heat the surface” issue. Due to a low emissivity CO2 would have to be very hot to heat the surface.

    Does anyone ever think that the corona of the sun at 1-3 million degrees heats the sun?

  23. Chris M says:

    Wayne, thank you belatedly for your roofless room analogy – it certainly made me think! If you are not a science teacher, you would make a good one. As a member of a science-based “craft” profession, I have been more familiar, for a very long time now, with the practical application of acquired knowledge and heuristic thinking, rather than resorting to first principles.

    So I now gather that the “walls” in a hypothetical atmospheric column of air are the adjacent columns, which emit to each face of the column as many IR photons as they receive from our “room”, thus resulting in no net change of IR within the column. At any point in time the GHGs (mainly H2O) are as likely to emit photons in the direction of the four walls and floor as towards space, hence slowing the rate of IR loss to space. And that, I understand, is the reason given for GHGs warming the atmosphere.

    So I suppose some questions are:

    What are the important determinants of the rate of TOA IR emission to space?
    What speeds up the process, and what slows it down?
    Is the exchange of photons between molecules in the atmosphere meaningful in terms of warming, or does that really depend on the warmth of the earth’s surface below?
    And if “downwelling” IR can’t reheat the surface, but merely slows the rate of surface IR emission in comparison to a body with a less dense atmosphere, how can the average rate of emission change assuming that the GHGs are never “saturated” with photons?

    I’d be grateful to you Wayne, or to anyone else who cares to reply, to straighten out my thinking here.

  24. Mydogsgotnonose says:

    mkelly: from memory, the emissivity of clear sky in our latitude is ~0.2, but that includes the H2O.

  25. wayne says:

    Chris M, that’s one of the best compliments i have received. Thanks. I do prefer keeping it simple when possible. There seems to be so many who never stop and ponder deeply on just what exactly we are speaking of when it comes to “radiation”, but you were able to see my point so clearly, especially horizontally. I am only a teacher right now for my daughter and my grandkids. They also want to know everything about the physical world but I have to come up with these parallel and simple examples. My love for astronomy and physics started around eighteen as I learned celestial navigation and I’ve never stopped.

    Your right, the ‘walls’ out in the open is simply the lateral homogenous nature of any thick atmosphere. Horizontally everything is identical except on a very large scale. Every transfer one direction has an equal and opposite action from the nearby neighboring columns. For that matter, outside you always are in a topless ‘room’. But vertically, it depends on the atmosphere. On Venus, you have a roof with just a small hole punch in it, very little gets in or out vertically. The optical thickness is about four. That means any radiation moving upward will be completely absorbed four times over before reaching space. Here on Earth it’s 1.87, still optically thick. On Mars it’s near zero, you have not only taken the rooms roof off but also knocked down the four walls! Horizontally on Mars, all but a tiny bit of radiation travelling horizontally will travel over the horizon and into space unimpeded.

    I just put the link forward on David Hoffman Short Circuit thread but I’ll repeat it here while it’s handy, you should enjoy its overview:
    http://www.mhtl.uwaterloo.ca/courses/ece309/lectures/pdffiles/summary_ch12.pdf
    Try to home in on what the wave nature of the duality. That’s a great chapter to read more than once. Wish I had found it much earlier myself. Let me know if you still have those questions after reading it.

  26. I have mentioned the Kiehl-Trenberth Energy Budget diagram, and the most basic and obvious problem it has, as well as making the same point made here (that the radiation theory misses the thermodynamics of the atmosphere completely, and the upwelling and downwelling IR is the EFFECT of the temperatures, not their CAUSE) in a submission today to wattsupwiththat, in response to Willis Eschenbach, which Anthony Watts refused to publish. It is getting to be like realclimate.com over there. I put the submission, and its results, on my own blog (because I believe in openness), if anyone is interested:

    Incompetent Skeptics II: Willis Eschenbach

    I also mentioned Claes Johnson’s independent explanation of the longwave radiation measurements (which others here have referred to) as actually being temperature measurements, which is saying the same thing as I wrote above, that those IR flows are effects of the temperatures, not the cause of them.

  27. Bob_FJ says:

    Harry Dale Huffman @ February 15, 12:48 am
    Harry,
    I’m thinking about writing an article with a title something like:

    Revelations from a CO2 alarmist physicist. (Joel Shore)

    I’ve been having a long exchange with him over at WUWT on a non-Willis thread, where he has given me a series of lectures, which evade my questions, such as here:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/02/03/monckton-responds-to-skeptical-science/#comment-889841

    Out of various lectures, Joel has stated, (paraphrasing):
    • Trenberth’s cartoon numbers are fine. (including 97 W/m^2 for convection, and 23 W/m^2 for surface radiation absorbed by atmosphere and clouds).
    • No one disagrees that convection (thermals + evapotranspiration) has a greater effect on the atmosphere than the radiation from the surface.

    This has driven a repeat of my latest question, for which I still await a reply:
    February 12, 2012 at 4:34 pm
    Joel Shore @ February 12, 5:47 am

    [My question 2] With an increase in surface T, would it not be reasonable to expect a reactive increase in evapotranspiration, and that prima facie it would seem to have greater influence than EMR from the surface, in terms of feedbacks?
    I’ve [Joel] explained this to you about 10 times in this thread now: Convection (evapotranspiration and thermals) would change in such a way as to keep the lapse rate at the (appropriate) adiabatic lapse rate, which means that indeed the whole troposphere warms, including the surface.

    Although you have not directly answered my question 2, are you saying yes to it? I’ve added bold emphasis to the last bit to make sure that you understand it.

  28. Bob_FJ says:

    Tallbloke:
    Further to my comment to Harry, just above, might you be interested in posting the proposed article. It’s quite amusing the way that Joel evades awkward questions and treats me like a naughty arrogant child, but he effectively admits, (I think), that his understanding of the GH theory covertly means that we need not worry about it!!!!!!
    GOSH!