Erl Happ: Climate changes – oh so naturally

Posted: June 12, 2012 by tallbloke in climate, general circulation, Ocean dynamics, Tides, weather
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I’m reposting this from Erl Happ’s blog because it deserves wider attention. This is a tour de force, pulling together the different strands of climate knowledge and weather lore Erl has been building up over the years. Hi ideas fit well with those of Marcel Leroux, who worked out that climate change is largely driven by longer term changes in the polar oscillations. Erl believes these are largely due to  ozone changes caused by solar variation which drive the global air flows via consequent surface pressure changes. As Hans Jelbring tells us: Wind controls climate. As Nikolov and Zeller tell us, surface pressure and insolation control temperature. Erl delves into the underlying causes of those polar variations, and connects the levels and latitudes of the atmosphere for us in a novel, logical and interesting way.

Climate changes – oh so naturally
Erl Happ Dec 2011

Outline

Change in the planetary winds (conceptually documented in the diagram above) is the least remarked but most influential dynamic affecting surface temperature.  Wind is a response to pressure differentials. So, a change in the wind is due to a change in these pressure differentials.

The following post describes why pressure differentials and the the planetary winds change over time.

From Wikipedia we have: “the troposphere is the lowest portion of Earth’s atmosphere. It contains approximately 80% of the atmosphere’s mass and 99% of its water vapor and aerosols. The average depth of the troposphere is approximately 17 km (11 mi) in the middle latitudes. It is deeper in the tropical regions, up to 20 km (12 mi), and shallower near the poles, at 7 km (4.3 mi) in summer, and indistinct in winter.”

The notion that there is  a tropopause in high latitudes or that it is somehow ‘indistinct in winter’ represents sloppy thinking.  At high latitudes, in winter, the air is not heated by the surface (very cold) or the release of latent heat (a cold desert). Neither is it heated directly by the sun (below the horizon). It is heated by the absorption of long wave radiation from the Earth by ozone. In consequence parts of the polar stratosphere and the troposphere are permanently locked together in convection. Consequently ozone descends into the near surface atmosphere.  This process changes the distribution of atmospheric mass and therefore surface pressure. It governs the strength of the planetary winds and cloud cover in the troposphere.  The process manifests as the Northern Annular Mode (or the Arctic Oscillation) and the Southern Annular Mode. These well recognized modes of inter-annual climate variation affect mid and high latitude temperatures and winter snow cover. But this is not the half of it. The influence of the circulation at the winter pole extends to the equator and the alternate hemisphere, especially in the case of the Arctic where stratospheric ozone concentration is more elevated than over Antarctica. If we imagine that this phenomenon is responsible for just the inter-annual climate variation, we reveal a blindness to the evolutionary nature of the phenomenon and its capacity to change climate over decadal and longer time scales.

The key to the evolution of surface pressure and wind is the polar night jet that  introduces NOx from the mesosphere eroding stratospheric ozone. It is most active in the winter hemisphere when coincidentally, the diminished loss of ozone by photolysis allows ozone levels to increase. But it extends into the spring and autumn and in the case of Antarctica is always active. Spatial variation in ozone concentration determines the pattern of ascent and descent.  Convection at high latitudes involves the descent of ozone into the ‘troposphere’ where it moves equator-wards dramatically affects surface pressure, atmospheric relative humidity and therefore the process of condensation that determines cloud cover, the most influential aspect of the Earth’s albedo.

It is observed here: http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2011/11/4/australian-temperatures.html   that it is temperature change in first half of day that is characteristic of recent climate change. It appears that almost all the warming over the last 60 years in Australia occurred between 6 am and 12 noon. Warming at this time is strongly correlated with decreasing cloud cover during the daytime and is therefore caused by increased solar insolation. Accordingly, we can observe that recent climate change proceeded from change in the Earths atmospheric albedo.

The ‘workings’ of the atmosphere at the poles is a frontier for climate science. See for instancehttp://www.physics.otago.ac.nz/space/2008JA014029-pip.pdf  or search on the words ‘geomagnetic activity Arctic Oscillation Index’ (without the inverted commas).

This essay offers an interpretation of the working of the high latitude atmosphere from the broadest perspective.  It takes time for unfamiliar ideas to gain traction but in truth much of what is described here is evident in the literature and is very much a part of the language of meteorology. This is not new knowledge. However, its importance is lost on those who wish to see man as the agent of climate change. This represents a triumph of ideology over observation, an everyday occurrence in the affairs of man.

If you believe that surface temperature depends upon trace gas composition via back radiation it would be best to put that idea aside while you read this paper. Observation of the manner in which the climate at the surface of the Earth changes over time suggests that the effect of down-welling radiation is swamped by the mechanism described here. Historically the globe has warmed and cooled hemispheric-ally rather than monolithic-ally, a point that is lost on those who insist on a single global metric for temperature. The process is hemispheric-ally distinctive because it is driven at the poles. The atmosphere at the two poles is distinctively different, largely due to the very different distribution of land and sea between the hemispheres. It is the difference in the  atmosphere between the poles that is important for the evolution of climate.

The Tropical Atmosphere

Viewed from space the troposphere is so thin as to be indistinguishable from the actual surface of the Earth. The Earth has a diameter  of 12,756 km. If the Earth were a mattress with a thickness of 300 mm and it were to be covered in a blanket in strict proportion that the troposphere bears to the diameter of the Earth, that blanket would be just 0.35 mm in thickness, the equivalent of five sheets of newspaper. It is the nature of the troposphere that it is hopelessly  unstable. Imagine sleeping under five sheets of newspaper with the lowest sheet removed every few seconds and replaced on top. Occasionally someone comes with a watering can to make sure that you are not overheating. The source of radiant warmth from above is lost for a variable portion of a twenty four hour cycle. Unless there is a substantial body of relatively warm water nearby, the surface of the Earth/mattress must soon get very cold. Fortunately, bodies of water have an enormous capacity to store energy and the tropical ocean is a storage organ for the Earth as a whole.

The troposphere efficiently transports energy away from the surface of the Earth via conduction, evaporation and convection. It also transfers energy laterally. But ultimately the surface of the Earth is not warmed by the troposphere, it is warmed by the ocean that traps energy from the sun.  Local temperature is primarily dependent upon the place of origin of the wind that is blowing, and whether it is from the land or the sea. The troposphere prevents the surface from overheating. So, surface air temperature is much influenced by the presence or absence of bodies of water and the extent of the sky that is cloudy.

Figure 1    The temperature of the tropical atmosphere at 10°north to 10° south in 2010

Source http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/

From the surface, temperature declines with altitude to the 100hPa pressure level at about 15km. In figure 1 the thermal tropopause,  the point at which there is sufficient ozone to reverse the decline of temperature with altitude, is marked with red ovals. Above this point temperature increases with altitude to the stratopause at 1hPa, an elevation of 45km where the temperature can be similar to that at the surface of the Earth. In the mesosphere the temperature of the air falls away with falling ozone concentration. The diagram at upper-right is to scale but there is an error. It shows cloud in the stratosphere. In fact cloud is largely confined to the troposphere because air is de-humidified as it cools during ascent.

At 15km in elevation the tropical tropopause has a temperature of  minus 80°C. There is nowhere in the lower atmosphere (stratosphere and troposphere) where the air is colder. Even in the polar night the temperature of the air is  greater than minus 80°C. The coolness of the air at the tropical tropopause is a reflection of ozone scarcity. Ozone absorbs long wave radiation from the Earth warming adjacent molecules of air regardless of their chemical composition. This is a critical dynamic affecting the location of the tropopause. We should realize that there is no hard boundary between the ozone-sphere and the troposphere.

What accounts for the presence of absence of ozone? The atmosphere is opaque to solar radiation short of the visible wave lengths. Photolysis is the the splitting or decomposition of a chemical compound by means of light energy or photons in the short wave or ionizing spectrum.  The presence of ozone is made possible by the splitting of the oxygen molecule by short wave ultraviolet. A few oxygen atoms recombine in the O3 form. As an even larger molecule than O2, ozone is more susceptible to photolysis than oxygen.  Consequently the quantity of O3 in the stratosphere is not large,  possibly as much as 10ppm which is one fortieth the concentration of that other greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide. The formation of ozone takes place at an elevation of 30km and above. At lower altitudes photolysis is progressively weaker because of the absorption of ionizing radiation at higher elevations . If it escapes the zone of active photolysis,  ozone drifts downward but only to the extent that the movement of the air, and the antagonistic presence of water vapor will allow. In the equatorial region this down-drift is opposed by a moist updraft.

In the subtropics at 10-40° of latitude the down-drift of ozone is facilitated by the presence of dry air descending into high pressure cells in the troposphere. See figures 10 and 11 below and in particular figure 4 indicating a presence of appreciable ozone at altitudes that we consider to be within the ‘troposphere’.  The presence of ozone in the ‘troposphere’ where there is ‘humidity’ and cloud cover influences that cloud cover and surface temperature.

In the polar regions there is an intermittent tendency for the air to descend, tending to produce a very broad minimum in surface temperature in the winter months. Polar air is usually warmer than the surface. Surface pressure is higher in winter encouraging descent. As the Antarctic Oscillation Index falls (an indicator of higher surface atmospheric pressure) the atmospheric column descends bringing ozone closer to the surface. Simultaneously, the night jet at the top of the stratosphere is invigorated bringing mesospheric nitrogen oxide into the upper stratosphere, eroding ozone and cooling the upper stratosphere. So, as surface pressure rises the upper stratosphere cools and the  atmosphere below 50hPa warms all the way to the surface. Figure 2  charts the intermittent nature of that process. It is the change in surface pressure that determines the speed of the downdraft and the penetration of the night jet. Surface pressure changes on all time scales and it is itself changed by the process whereby the stratosphere and troposphere are coupled in convection.

Figure 2

Ozone as an agent for change and its distribution in low and mid latitudes

The presence of ozone in the upper troposphere/lower stratosphere is responsible for the inversion in temperature that begins at the tropopause. So, in the lower stratosphere (beneath the zone of active photolysis) we see the greenhouse effect in its most assertive manifestation and that effect is entirely due to the presence of ozone and its response to outgoing long wave radiation from the Earth.

Long wave radiation is a term used to describe the infrared energy emitted by the Earth (and its atmosphere) at wavelengths between about 4 μm and 25 μm (micrometers). Between 8 and 14 µm radiation passes readily through the troposphere.  There is also a partial window for transmission in far infrared spectral lines between about 16 and 28 µm.  Ozone absorbs round the 9.6 μm band. CO2 absorbs at a number of intervals in both shorter and longer wave lengths than ozone. A greenhouse gas that is stratified, such as ozone,  markedly enhances the greenhouse effect because it absorbs at wave lengths that would not otherwise be absorbed and promotes emission at wave lengths that can be absorbed by complementary absorbers. Consequently, the greenhouse effect is much enhanced in the stratosphere by comparison with the troposphere.

But ozone is not particular to the stratosphere. It is found below the tropopause and above the stratopause. It is carried in and out of the tropospheric domain and as we will see, it does so most dramatically and influentially at high latitudes.

It can be observed that the stratosphere exhibits hot spots above deserts where radiation is enhanced. Locally, the temperature of the stratosphere (and the troposphere where it contains appreciable ozone) depends upon both ozone content and the amount of energy in transit.

In the troposphere, ascending air cools by decompression and it gives off little radiation.  In locations where ascent is strong there is accordingly less radiation to heat the stratosphere. Secondly, in the tropics there is less ozone to absorb that radiation  due to the strength of the updraft. This accounts for the coolness of the atmosphere at 100hPa through to 50hPa in the tropics.  Note the deficiency in  radiation in near equatorial latitudes between New Guinea and Pakistan and to the East of the Gulf of Mexico. This is the fingerprint of convection.

Figure 3

While ascending air cools by de-compression, descending air warms by compression and gives off abundant radiation. For this reason the high pressure cells of the subtropical latitudes (located somewhere between 10-40° of latitude depending upon season) are potent sources of long wave radiation emanating not from the surface but directly from the atmosphere. Since these cells are larger and most potent in the winter hemisphere we have the paradox of the Earth system delivering more radiation to space from its cooler hemisphere and very little radiation emanating from the tropics where the energy from the sun is most available.

Indeed the increase in radiation in winter produces a seasonal peak in the temperature of the stratosphere at 20-30°south latitude at a time when the surface is at its coolest. See  figures 3 and 4.  It is the presence of sufficient ozone in about a third of the upper troposphere that is responsible for this seasonal maximum in upper air temperature in the middle of winter. Of course, any change in the concentration of ozone in these latitudes will affect high altitude cirrus cloud. In the last post on this blog I documented the seasonal  decline in relative humidity at 300hPa in the upper troposphere between the equator and 50° south in the middle of the year. That is a direct product of heating in the northern hemisphere because the strength of the downdraft in the southern hemisphere (and the temperature and humidity of the descending air) is related to the strength of the updraft in the north and the variable presence of ozone in  the descending air in the south.What goes up must come down.

So, the notion that ‘the troposphere is heated from the surface’, while essentially valid, takes on a different twist when the upper troposphere contains ozone. The air temperature is then determined in exactly the same way as it is determined in the stratosphere. The implications for cloud cover should be plain. This  is the essential feature of the natural climate change dynamic as it affects mid and low latitudes.

Figure 4 Temperature of the atmosphere at pressure levels 20-30° south

Source of data: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/cgi-bin/data/timeseries/timeseries1.pl

‘Convection’ is the term used to describe the displacement of less dense air by denser air. Any warming of the air will make it less dense. When water vapor condenses heat is released into the surrounding atmosphere. Again heat is released to the atmosphere as water turns to ice. Since water vapor is by and large confined to the troposphere, so too (except for a very important special case to be explored shortly) is convection. There is some overshooting of convection from the troposphere into the stratosphere in the tropics, especially over tropical rain forests where the supply of moisture to the atmosphere is more generous.

The fact that temperature falls with increasing altitude in the troposphere greatly assists the process of convection because a parcel of ascending air tends to be warmer than the air that surrounds it.  Convection is a countervailing force to down-welling long wave radiation so far as any effect on the  temperature of the surface is concerned. A noted already, rising air cools by decompression, not radiation. Any source of warmth expands the air and promotes convection. Convection is the defining characteristic of the troposphere. It has the effect of moving energy from low to high  in the troposphere, from the summer to the winter hemisphere and at the surface displacing warm moist air polewards. The assertion that down-welling radiation from increased greenhouse gas will warm the surface flies in the face of our knowledge of the physical processes at work in the troposphere. It is a product of religion, not science. Hence the inappropriate demonization of carbon dioxide.

It is very clear from the map above that the southern hemisphere  radiates strongly in winter. Were there a viable greenhouse effect, it would do a lot of good by warming the surface of the southern hemisphere in winter reducing the diurnal and annual range of temperature, especially over land. The annual range of temperature is indeed much truncated in the southern hemisphere, due to this effect (working to reduce cloud cover) and also the ratio of land to sea.

Does the stratosphere have water vapor? Clouds do occur in the stratosphere, especially in the tropics and subtropics where convection is strongest. Is water vapor in the stratosphere antagonistic to the existence of ozone? According to Greg Shindel at NASA “Water vapor breaks down in the stratosphere, releasing reactive hydrogen oxide molecules that destroy ozone. These molecules also react with chlorine containing gases, converting them into forms that destroy ozone. So a wetter stratosphere will have less ozone.” http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/briefs/shindell_05/

Ozone in the polar atmosphere and the mobile ‘tropopause’

Can we speak of a ‘tropopause’ at high latitudes? The summer and winter situations are very different but in neither instance will we find a tropopause at 7 km in elevation as suggested by Wikipedia, not even an ‘indistinct’ one.  Is there convection in the polar troposphere? Yes.  There is no boundary to convection in the high latitude atmosphere. At high latitudes the atmosphere is heated in a top down rather than a bottom up fashion. It is at the top of the atmosphere that we find the agent of heating and convection, ozone in relative abundance. There is no heating to be had at the surface.

There is very little water vapor in the polar atmosphere to help us distinguish between ‘troposphere’ and ‘stratosphere’. Most of the moisture is squeezed out of tropical air in its transit from the equator. Accordingly the polar surface at high latitudes is a cold desert. Incidentally, it is just as well that the air is dry by the time it gets to the pole, otherwise more of the ocean would be permanently locked up in the polar ice cap. Does the extent of the polar ice cap (and sea level) primarily reflect the strength and humidity of the mid latitude westerlies? Is the extent of polar ice simply a function of the balance between accretion and depletion. But let me not be distracted.

Deprived of sunlight in winter one might imagine that the polar stratosphere might lose its ozone and become extremely cold. The reverse is the case. Photolysis by sunlight is the chief natural cause of ozone degradation. In a winter regime of zero  photolysis, ozone accumulates in the polar stratosphere  as is clearly apparent in figures 6 and 7. It is also apparent that ozone tends to be diminished in the low and mid latitudes of the winter hemisphere via the process of wasting into the high pressure cells of the mid latitudes in the winter hemisphere and this is clearly evident in the northern hemisphere.

Figure 6

Figure 7

Source: http://ds.data.jma.go.jp/gmd/jra/atlas/eng/atlas-tope.htm

The entire atmospheric column at the pole is below freezing point. On the face of it this, might be expected to produce a relatively still atmosphere. This is not the case. High latitudes experience destructive winds, especially in Antarctica, and on a more consistent basis than elsewhere. Strong wind is due to extreme pressure gradients. The manner in which extreme pressure gradients are created is unique to this part of the globe. The presence of ozone in the troposphere causes heating. But ozone is unequally distributed. The warmest parts of the stratosphere naturally ascend and the coolest parts descend into the domain of the ‘troposphere’, and in particular over the ocean. The presence of ozone causes a reduction in the number of molecules in the atmospheric column. Surface pressure falls. The lowest surface atmospheric pressure on the globe is to be found, not where the sun shines brightly, but at high latitudes where the sun is weak and the Earth itself is the source of radiation that heats the air. See figure 14 below.

In the upshot, as w see in figures 6 and 7  there is a very strong gradient in ozone concentration between the mid latitudes (low) and the Arctic and Antarctic circles (high) in the winter hemisphere. When the polar circulation forces ozone into the troposphere it makes for a dynamic situation with very strong gradients in surface pressure. This enhances wind strength in winter.

Figure 8

The process of convection at high latitudes is assisted by the upward movement of the ‘cold point’ in winter. In the Arctic summer in mid year the cold point lies somewhere between 8 and 20km in elevation (Figure 8). Yes, if this is the ‘tropopause’ it is manifestly ‘indistinct’. Actually, this thermal profile indicates that the process of convection that we associate with the troposphere would be readily extended into the stratosphere were the source of warmth to be associated with the surface. But, it is actually not associated with surface phenomena at all. It is associated with the presence of ozone.   Accordingly the dynamic behind the degree of convection is the ozone content of the upper stratosphere.

Dynamics in the stratosphere

The night jet introduces nitrogen oxides from the mesosphere into the stratosphere between 1 and 50hPa, eroding ozone in summer and winter, with a bias towards stronger activity in the high pressure regime of winter.

In winter and spring the cold point moves up and down between 300hPa and 20hPa like a yo-yo. We see in figure 8 that the cold point can not be considered to mark the transition between a ‘troposphere’ and ‘stratosphere’. These terms have no application in the very different atmosphere at high latitudes.

In figures 9 and 10 we see that the temperature of the Arctic stratosphere at 5hPa  gyrates in winter/spring in a spectacular fashion.   In figure 9 the warming events are marked with red arrows (Arctic) and green arrows (Antarctic). Each warming event is associated with a decline in the temperature of the equatorial stratosphere at 5hPa. It is also associated with an increase in the AO as seen in 10. To see this connection please relate the timing of the warming episodes marked with green (Antarctic origin) and red (Arctic origin) lines in figure 9 to the timing of the increases in the AO as documented in figure 10. Since the AO relates to change in polar atmospheric pressure we can observe that  every warming episode is due to a fall in polar surface pressure  and a collapse in the night jet.

Figure 9

Source: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/temperature/

It is apparent that the change in the temperature of the polar stratosphere has global implications for wind force and direction, including the Pacific Ocean where ENSO relates to a surface pressure oscillation. The notion (in UNIPCC type climate science) that heating of the upper stratosphere at the poles it is driven by ‘planetary waves’, ‘gravity waves’ or ‘heat flux from lower latitudes to high latitudes’ is nonsense. The heating of the atmospheric column is time specific, seasonal in occurrence, it relates to the presence or absence of NOx from the mesosphere and change in the surface pressure regime as represented  in the AO and the AAO indices.  Nowhere in science is there are more dramatic illustration of the impact of ideology in determining ‘orthodoxy’. The effect is to rule out of consideration the process by which the sun causes change in surface wind, air temperature and precipitation. The proponents of UNIPCC simply do not wish to know about this dynamic.

Figure 10

The global nature of this dynamic is apparent in the association of figures 9 and 10.  We need to understand this if we wishe to understand how the climate can change change naturally. A rise in the AO (fall in atmospheric pressure at high latitudes) corresponds with the warming event in the upper polar stratosphere and a cooling event in the lower polar atmosphere. It is  coincident with a marked cooling of the middle and upper stratosphere over the equator. As we will see it is also associated with an increase in the intensity of solar radiation reaching the ocean in mid latitudes. Simultaneously there is a reduction in atmospheric pressure at  about 60° of latitude, an increase in pressure at about 30° of latitude and therefore a stimulation of the westerly winds.

Summarizing:

  • Fall in the AO (rising polar pressure) = abrupt increase in the temperature of the lower polar atmosphere and simultaneous  fall in the temperature of the upper polar atmosphere as the penetration of the night jet is enhanced. This is associated with an abrupt  increase in the temperature of the equatorial upper stratosphere as the equator loses atmospheric mass, pressure falls there as it rises at the pole.
  • Rise in the AO (falling polar pressure) = abrupt fall in the temperature of the lower polar atmosphere as the temperature of the upper polar stratosphere increases due to the night jet stalling. This is accompanied by a fall in the temperature of the upper equatorial stratosphere as the equatorial atmosphere gains mass. The increase in the temperature of the upper polar atmosphere is referred to as a sudden stratospheric warming. It is associated with enhanced ozone content. Such a warming is documented in late January 2011 in figure 8 and in August, September and October in figure 11.

These dynamics have been described as the Northern Annular mode and the Southern Annular mode of inter-annual climate variation. See http://www.atmos.colostate.edu/ao/introduction.html

Unique features that energize the Antarctic polar circulation

Figure 11

In the Antarctic the surface is colder than the Arctic all year round. The cold point is elevated for a longer period than it is in the Arctic. Looking at the lowest panel of figure 9 there is a weaker (than the Arctic) but persistent variation in the temperature of the upper atmosphere at 5hPa over nine months of the year. Only between February and April is this variation diminished. The persistence of the night jet over a longer period each year is associated with a diminished level of ozone in the southern stratosphere. That same relatively invariable persistence is also associated with a reduced incidence and intensity of ‘stratospheric warmings’.

The nature of the Antarctic atmosphere has changed dramatically over time.

Figure 12 The temperature of the stratosphere at 80-90°south in September. °C

Since 1948 the temperature at 10hPa in September has increased strongly  while that at 250hpa is stable. The increase in the temperature at 10hPa relative to 200hPa indicates enhanced thermal contrast in the upper ozone-sphere, favoring the overturning circulation. The increase in temperature aloft is consistent with the progressive decline in surface atmospheric pressure south of 50°south with compensating gain in pressure between 50° south and 50° north. This change in atmospheric pressure is documented in figure 14. It represents the unobserved gorilla in the climate change room. This gorilla is invisible in ‘climate science’ as it is propagated in the works of the UNIPCC.

Figure 14 Pressure Loss /Gain according to latitude between the first and last decades of the period 1948 -2011

The churning of ozone into the lower atmosphere  produces the pattern of surface pressure that we see in figures 15 and 16. Notice the band of extremely low surface pressure on the margins of Antarctica and lesser zones in the North Atlantic and North Pacific.

Figure 15

Source: http://ds.data.jma.go.jp/gmd/jra/atlas/eng/atlas-tope.htm

The evolution of surface pressure in the northern hemisphere is plainly affected by the presence of the Eurasian land mass where temperature swings more wildly than it does over the sea. We see high pressure on the land in winter and low pressure in summer. In northern winter, low pressure anomalies (associated with ozone descent) affect latitudes  between 50-60°north in particular over the North Pacific and North Atlantic. This is the location where the coupled circulation injects ozone into the lower atmosphere  producing a tell tale pattern of sea surface temperature anomalies in mid latitudes.

In the southern hemisphere the coupled circulation produces a near continuous zone of low surface pressure on the margins of Antarctica that deepens in winter.

Figure 16

Source: http://ds.data.jma.go.jp/gmd/jra/atlas/eng/atlas-tope.htm

For an animation of global sea level pressure courtesy of Paul Vaughan seehttp://i54.tinypic.com/swg11c.png The animation shows the strong role of the Eurasian land mass in determining surface pressure in the northern hemisphere. Notice the seasonal increase in surface pressure over Antarctica in winter and the relatively invariable zone of low pressure on its margins.

The waxing and waning of surface pressure at 60-70° south is responsible for the variation in the strength of the westerly winds in the southern hemisphere that we see in Paul’s animation at:http://i52.tinypic.com/nlo3dw.png.  Isotachs are lines of equal wind speed. Notice the  increase in the strength of the westerlies in winter in the zone between South Africa and Australia consistent with the presence of the persistent ozone anomaly in this area, a feature that is likely connected with the phenomenon known as the Indian Ocean dipole.

Obviously there is a strong variability in surface pressure at 60-70° south (ozone churn zone) from month to month and across the year. That variation is due to changing ozone content of the polar stratosphere and change in the patterns of convection that are due to this variation. Once initiated the process of ozone churn actively lowers pressure between 50° of latitude and the pole. This reduces night jet activity allowing ozone content to further increase. In other words there is a powerful feedback mechanism. It is this feedback that has robbed the southern hemisphere of atmospheric mass at mid to high latitudes over the last sixty years.

The coupling of the stratosphere and the troposphere at the poles is continuous, albeit weaker in summer than winter. We know this from the pattern of geopotential heights (warmed air) produced in the upper troposphere. By charting the GPH anomalies we  observe the effect of the coupled circulation at the poles on the upper troposphere at any time of the year.

Figure 16


Source: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/intraseasonal/z200anim.shtml

The warming and drying influence of ozone on the upper troposphere, plainly affecting cloud cover and sea surface temperature, propagates towards the equator as we see below. Ozone is carried towards the equator by the counter westerly flow in the upper troposphere destroying ice cloud as it moves and allowing the ocean to warm. There are plainly many centers of activity in the southern hemisphere at 20-30° south. Relative stability in the geographical spread of these locations of enhanced ozone descent produces the pattern of global sea surface temperature anomalies that is characteristic of ENSO.

Figure 17 Association of geopotential height anomalies at 200hPa with sea surface temperature anomalies

The  warming of the sea in mid and low latitudes is directly associated with the fall in polar pressure on the margins of Antarctica. It is therefore associated with with an increase in the speed of the westerly winds and enhanced evaporation from the sea surface, a phenomenon particularly marked in the southern hemisphere. So, the sea surface temperature response in the southern hemisphere is muted by the evaporation response, a phenomenon much less evident in the northern hemisphere.

Figure 14, showing the loss of atmospheric pressure over time tells us that the stronger circulation is in Antarctica. The Arctic circulation is disrupted by heating of the northern land masses in summer. The relative lack of ozone churn in the Arctic stratosphere is reflected in higher stratospheric ozone values, weaker westerly winds and weaker polar easterlies. However this background of high ozone and weak wind strength is associated with strong changes in the domain occupied by the surface winds when quite small change in surface pressure occur. The change in  pressure relations between mid and high latitudes has long been monitored as the Arctic Oscillation. When polar pressure is high the cold polar Easterlies sweep well south into former domain of the westerlies. When pressure is low the westerlies sweep further north and winters are much more benign. This is THE climate change dynamic that produces the swing in winter temperature in the northern hemisphere that repeats at regular intervals. 1960-78 cooling. 1978-2007 warming. Post 2007 cooling.

A brief note on the night jet

A picture is worth a thousand words.

1. As we have seen in relation to figure 9 and 10 the activity of the night jet varies with atmospheric pressure. See also: http://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2011/09/08/a-climate-change-dynamic/

2. It is known that the concentration of nitrogen oxides in mesospheric air depends upon solar activity.

3. There is a well documented relationship between geomagnetic activity and change in the surface pressure relationship between mid and high latitudes in winter (documented as the Arctic and the Antarctic Oscillation Indexes).

Consider now:

Figure 18

Source http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat_a_f/

Figure 18 shows the effect of the night jet on the ozone concentration of the upper stratosphere in August 2011 an elevation of  roughly 43 km. In the core you see a zone of 5.5 to 6 ppm ozone. On the margins of Antarctica ozone attains 8.5 to 9 ppm and over the Pacific peaks at 11to 11.5 ppm ozone. The evolution of the night jet is the primary control on ozone content of the polar stratosphere. The extent of wasting of ozone into the troposphere is the secondary mode of control, and probably more influential, especially in the southern hemisphere. There may be other influences, perhaps related to the number of aerosol cans and fridges delivered to municipal rubbish tips, but in the big scheme these influences have been and continue to be inflated by hysteria, agenda driven politics and the demand for research funding by egocentric academics dedicated to a particular view of the world. That view of the world sees man as ‘the problem’.

Why is the coupled circulation over Antarctica so much stronger than it is over the Arctic? The southern hemisphere lacks the mass of land that exists in the northern hemisphere to warm the atmosphere in summer and disrupt the polar circulation.

Summary

The polar circulation injects ozone into the high latitude lower atmosphere. With little water vapor the atmosphere at high latitudes possess few of the properties of the low or mid latitude troposphere. It is this perturbation in ozone content affecting the weight of the atmospheric column (and surface pressure) that changes the wind, the cloud and surface temperature on the inter-annual, decadal and centennial time scales. It does this by changing the concentration of the one greenhouse gas that is beyond the influence of man. The presence of absence of ozone in the cloud zone is a matter for the sun and the atmosphere in a complex dance that challenges our imagination. It is the electromagnetic influence of the sun, depending upon plasma density within the neutral atmosphere that initiates a redistribution of the atmosphere and starts a process that includes a strong feedback mechanism. The feedback mechanism is in turn dependent on the night jet and surface pressure. It is the activity of the sun that determines the chemical constitution of mesosphere air that is drawn into the tenuous upper atmosphere over the poles. It is the sun that ultimately controls this circulation. The Earth system greatly amplifies the tiny stimulus that the sun applies to the tenuous upper atmosphere.

In this way the cloud comes and goes. Global cloud and high altitude ice cloud in the southern hemisphere is most abundant between November and March when the Arctic circulation is influential.  It is at this time when the Earth is closest to the sun that the most vigorous variation in the  El Nino Southern Oscillation is seen.  If we look deeper, we see a strong dependency of the Arctic circulation on the Antarctic. On the shortest time scale the Arctic circulation is frequently a mirror image of that in the Antarctic. On the longest time scale the AO moves with the AAO. The AAO sees by far the largest swings on decadal and longer time scales. The Antarctic is not only the strongest circulation, it is the least studied.

One can restate this argument in a slightly different way. An ozone feed to the troposphere from either pole changes high altitude ice cloud density. Observation reveals that surface temperature varies most widely between November and March when the Arctic circulation is most active. Seehttp://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2011/10/03/where-is-science/ It is at this time we see the greatest fluctuations in the Southern Oscillation index that reflects pressure variation between Tahiti and Darwin.The Southern Oscillation Index leads all sea surface temperature indices. Surface pressure change has its origin in change in the AO and the AAO.

What is described here is a natural climate change dynamic that represents the primary mode of climate variation affecting the Earth system.  To the extent that temperature in the tropics is aligned with change in surface pressure (it is) you know that this factor is influential. The primacy of the Antarctic in terms of its influence on surface pressure indicates that the Antarctic is ‘The Main Player’ with the Arctic acting as the necessary intermediary in mediating the process of change.

The oft repeated proposition that change is initiated at low latitudes and propagates towards the poles is precisely 180° out of whack. When we speak of the influence of ENSO on global temperature we are actually looking at the product of polar processes.

Note:  For a detailed analysis download the document at http://www.happs.com.au/images/stories/PDFarticles/TheCommonSenseOfClimateChange.pdf

Earlier posts on this topic can be accessed at http://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2011/01/17/earths-changing-atmosphere/ and earlier athttp://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2009/11/08/the-climate-engine/

Comments
  1. Stephen Wilde says:

    I am familiar with this tour de force from Erl and have previously communicated with him about it.

    I agree with virtually all of it with one fundamental difference.

    Erl seems to have built his concepts on the basis of the established view that an active sun warms the whole atmospheric column and so has to go to some lengths to try and explain how the polar vortex might nonetheless be positive at a time of active sun when a positive AO requires a cooler stratosphere.

    Being aware of that problem I proposed that the stratospheric cooling we observed during the late 20th century warming period was in fact natural and solar induced.

    If that is correct then it greatly simplifies the necessary narrative but I have not yet had time to go into the exercise of seeing how reversing the sign of the stratospheric response to solar changes might affect Erl’s scenario.

    At the moment we have his proposals and mine standing separately and each awaiting conrirmation or refutation by ongoing climate observations.

  2. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    There is a lot to digest here. I just want to record my encouragement to Erl and others, like Stephen, who put effort into understanding and explaining the real drivers of our climate.

  3. adolfogiurfa says:

    May I ask a fool´s question: Why does all this movements happen?, why is it so that temperature relates with the GMF?, what does the earth spin?
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/Arctic.htm
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/SSN-dBzA1.htm

  4. Roger Andrews says:

    Stephen W:

    “Being aware of that problem I proposed that the stratospheric cooling we observed during the late 20th century warming period was in fact natural and solar induced.”

    It was in fact induced by the El Chichón and Pinatubo eruptions, each of which caused a +/- 0.5C downward shift in an otherwise flat temperature record.

  5. tchannon says:

    RA, how a transient event cause a permanent shift?

  6. Roger Andrews says:

    Tim:

    Damned if I know. But it’s a question that needs to be answered.

  7. wayne says:

    Erl, this is a very serious article and needs some very serious reading, so like many this is going to take a while to digest it all. But already, you just may have given to me the missing mechanism of transfer of energy from the equator toward the poles I was looking for a month or so ago. This is some great and much needed work explaining all of the factors we see in the atmosphere.

    If you want your article to be easily envisioned by non-meteorologist persons, you might give a few paragraphs explaining the mass difference between the upper atmosphere, let’s say above 100 mb, and the atmosphere below. At 100 mb, only 10% of the mass lies above and 90% lies below this division. So, in an idealized example, a 15 knot of × mass blowing in one direction will need ten times the velocity, of 150 knots, in the upper atmosphere in the opposite direction to counteract this movement of a given mass. That is simply how you get both the high velocity jets and the bulls-eye pole concentration simply due to the converge geometry of a sphere at the poles. The mass × velocity is the same in all cases, it is just that the stratosphere is so diffuse it needs a much higher velocity to move ‘x’ amount of mass than in the low atmosphere. You speak in high pressure differentials, but some may not visualize that so easily. Of course, Coriolis and the 3d volumes greatly complicates this idealized viewpoint.

    I’ll be back later after absorbing a bit more. Super article!

  8. Stephen Wilde says:

    RA.

    The volcanic eruptions merely inserted a temporary disruption into a longer term trend caused by other factors.

  9. Tenuc says:

    Thanks, Erl, for a good explanation of how ozone chemistry has a large effect on weather regime/climate.

    Came across these videos of the output from a simple model global air circulation and temperature algorithm, both based on an idealized dry atmosphere with a climate that is independent of longitude and is symmetric about the equator…

    Zonal component of upper tropospheric wind

    Near surface temperature

    The model demonstrates the turbulence present in Earth’s atmospheric circulation – imagine the real complexity if the effects of water vapour and geography could be observed.

    @Adolfo – Yes, we need to remember that the EM field also has a major impact on climate, with long term variation leading to long term change. Wonder if there is also an unidentified link to earth electric ‘ring’ currents and ozone production?

  10. Roger Andrews says:

    SW:

    “The volcanic eruptions merely inserted a temporary disruption into a longer term trend caused by other factors.”

    Is this your longer term trend?

  11. ArndB says:

    @ Erl believes these are largely due to ozone changes caused by solar variation @

    According Brönnimann et al, NATURE*] there had been a global climate anomaly in 1940 to 1942 and three extreme cold winters in Europe 1939/40, 1940/41, and 1941/42, assuming that: “Scientists in the early 1940s observed unusually high values of total ozone over several sites in Europe, but did not present an explanation. At the same time, exceptional climatic conditions were registered at the Earth’s surface, but were never analysed in a large-scale context.”

    Concluding (p.974) that
    __“It leads to more ozone transport from the tropical source regions to the extratropics, stronger descent over the polar area and hence a warm lower stratosphere and high Arctic total ozone in late winter”.
    __ The results suggest that the global climate anomaly in 1940 to 1942 — previously poorly documented — constitutes a key period for our understanding of large-scale climate variability and global El Nino effects.”

    Maybe the three year anomaly 1940-1942 could be a test of Erl Happ’s and Brönnimann’s thesis.

    *] “Extreme climate of the global troposphere and stratosphere in 1940–42 related to El Nino”. NATURE, 2004, Vol. 431, p.971ff

  12. I second Wayne. thanks Erl, tour do force, much to ponder, and in my case, splice with my new understanding of the gravity-factor in atmospheric temperatures. Will be back.

  13. Have now read through twice, another time and I’ll be able to be conversant about the dynamics Erl entails, much meat on strong bones, still figuring out how the lunar declinational tides fit into this big clear picture. I still think a movie of the dynamics of the global circulation with notations to these drivers would well be worth the effort to produce, working on getting the data needed to do what I can.

    Much here that could/needs to be incorporated into a new view of climate dynamics that flows well and fills gaps in conventional knowledge, Thanks much Erl for the elucidation.

  14. Tim, You are so perceptive. 

    The way I read Roger Andrews’ graph is exactly the opposite to the way he interprets it. The relentless downward slope of the Lower Stratosphere temperature between 1978 and 1996 was interrupted by two transient events (El Chichon and Pinatubo) which, being transient, had no significant effect on the overall change over that period.

    Stephen Wilde answers him succinctly: “RA: The volcanic eruptions merely inserted a temporary disruption into a longer term trend caused by other factors.”

    But RA’s reply shows that he still can’t see the obvious…!

  15. John Snow says:

    David Socrates: It may not be so obvious. Taken as a whole the graph from 1978 -2012 shows a clear (obvious) downward trend. However, I colud choose to look at the periods 1978-1983, 1885-1992, and 1995-2012 independantly, in which case there is an “obvious” step function. Since the two transient event cannot produce a permament change then I might propose an interaction between these discrete events and the “other factors.” If this is the case then nothing is quite so “obvious”.

  16. adolfogiurfa says:

    Focalized weather?. Do you remember those dead dolphins along the norther coasts of Peru?
    http://articles.cnn.com/2012-04-22/americas/world_americas_peru-dead-dolphins_1_dolphin-deaths-morbillivirus-cape-cod?_s=PM:AMERICAS
    Well, this is the cause:
    http://www.scielo.org.pe/pdf/iigeo/v8n16/a02v08n16.pdf
    However the cause of the cause is yet to be known. BTW, as always, Greens blamed sound pollution from off shore drilling, etc.

  17. Joe Lalonde says:

    TB,

    Very good presentation!
    A few points of concern which was missed was planetary tilting and the distance differences to the sun in the time periods.
    I find the term oscillations offensive in science when they do not include planetary tilting and the circulation changes this creates.
    The moons effect on our pressure was also missed.

    On the other side, the winds in rotation are very close to the suns circulation and I bet every other rotating body with an atmosphere.

  18. Joe Lalonde says:

    TB,

    Sure would be nice if we had the wind speeds velocity values to also work with but again they have NEVER been mapped.
    Density differences in atmospheric gases change with heat and cold as well which have a tendency to generate or decline wind speeds.
    Tornadoes generate in the clouds and come to the surface where the wind speeds are greater due to the density differences, velocity differences, etc. Never see any inverted tornadoes going higher in the atmosphere.
    The destructive force is the density that is generated as usually water vapor is pulled into this making a more denser air mass.

  19. Joe Lalonde says:

    adolfogiurfa,

    Interesting read…

    I have an hypothesis that the loss of atmosphere and lack of sun activity that would boost the atmosphere has generated a lack of insulation and changed our planets atmospheric pressure.

    This then would effect the pressure holding down the planets plates as there is a sort of balance effect of two pressures. One from our planet and one from our atmosphere that has generated a balance that shifts from time to time depending on the circumstance of pressure differences.
    This then could trigger a more active volcanic activity cycle which then releases trapped gases and energies.
    This again depends on our measuring of atmospheric gases as being incorrect!

    But that is just my own research and NOT consensus scientists.

  20. Roger Andrews says:

    @ John Snow, David Socrates, Stephen Wilde

    Thompson et al. (2008) agree that the cooling in the TLS record is generated by volcanic eruptions:

    “The long-term, global-mean cooling of the lower stratosphere stems from two downward steps in temperature, both of which are coincident with the cessation of transient warming after the volcanic eruptions of El Chichon and Mt. Pinatubo.”

    And here’s what they think caused the downward steps:

    “First, we provide evidence that the unusual step-like behavior of global-mean stratospheric temperatures is dependent not only upon the trend but also on the temporal variability in global-mean ozone immediately following volcanic eruptions. Second, we argue that the warming/cooling pattern in global-mean temperatures following major volcanic eruptions is consistent with the competing radiative and chemical effects of volcanic eruptions on stratospheric temperature and ozone.”

    Read more at

    http://www.atmos.colostate.edu/ao/ThompsonPapers/ThompsonSolomon_JClimate2008_InPress.pdf

  21. Stephen Wilde says:

    The AGW crowd say that the cooling of the stratosphere was due to CO2 holding more energy in the atmosphere thus depriving the stratosphere of energy.

    That isn’t possible because the cooling stopped but the CO2 emission rate didn’t.

    Similarly Thompson et al are blaming volcanic activity but the recent cessation of cooling has lasted too long for it to be anything to do with the earlier volcanic eruptions. The volcanic effects cannot produce a permanent system response so other things must be going on.

    In contrast I say that stratospheric cooling is a natural system response to high solar activity and in support we have the fact that the cooling stopped when the sun became less active. We need to wait and see what happens next in light of the continuing low level of solar activity.

  22. James Buchanan says:

    My question,
    simple chemistry, with physics implications. Ok, the ionization of the “cold” atmosphere, with the moving magnetic poles, does it change his map distributions, or does it reinforce the geographical distributions. ie, more NO over the geographic pole, or the magnetic pole. Affecting the positioning of the jet streams.

  23. tchannon says:

    JB, not sure anyone knows.

    All, looks like Rog is absent but I’ve barely looked at the blog for some time. Will try to keep more of an eye on things.

  24. tchannon says:

    A transient can trip a marginally stable system into modal change but I suspect this is not the case. Tripping a step is possible but if true says there is something very strange about earth: give it a shove it stays put.

    Transients are very important in some engineering, tap the railway wheel and listen. This is exactly what we can have if there is a definite impulse, perhaps an eruption is enough to glean additional information about earth stability. I use kick the tyres quite often, including specifying in production testing, simplest way.

    Wish we knew what cause the 187x or 1998 spikes. These are generally (can’t think of a case where it doesn’t) followed by a dip as things settle down. (could show a hovmoller diagram)

    I’ve not looked at the volcano problem.

  25. wayne says:

    tchannon:
    “A transient can trip a marginally stable system into modal change but I suspect this is not the case. Tripping a step is possible but if true says there is something very strange about earth: give it a shove it stays put.”

    That brings to mind one aspect of the climate that seems to constantly rear it’s head, you can see it in most charts. That is that certain parameters are critical. They sit balanced on steep differential curves and any change in their position or value (on a graph) will cause immediate changes throughout the system.

    However, there are other parameters that sit on either at local minimums or local maximums, rather flat tops or bottoms, and the systems is happy with these parameters anywhere between limits along these plateaus. If a parameter is near the left edge and it gets a push right, little change happens in the overall system, for it’s happy anywhere along this plateau and it will stay put until some other change pushes is back to the left. There is a general range of acceptability between the limits. I’m not talking exact but just general, even the plateaus have slight slopes.

    This is where all of this linearality of all parameters in climate “science” usually really irks me. They just assume all parameters are equal in their ability to cause changes (due to all being linear) and I have never seen it that way.

  26. RE. Roger Andrews June 12, 2012 at 8:05 pm and his graph of stratospheric cooling and subsequent discussions, why is it in climate science that people always seen to have a need to look for the most COMPLEX explanation for a natural phenomenon?

    I cannot think of anything more unlikely from the point of view of the physics involved than that a volcano could cause a PERMANENT shift in the temperature level. Yes anything could happen in theory due to feedbacks and non linearities but surely all the evidence is that the Earth is generally very resilient to such relatively small perturbations. 

    Therefore the best hypothesis has to be the simplest until proved otherwise. It is not a matter of looking at the graphs and seeing a continuous downward trend interrupted by a couple of transient spikes (as I do) or seeing three separate flatish periods at different levels linked by two volcanic events (as Roger Andrews does). No, that would be just one person’s prejudice against another’s.

    Instead it is actually a matter of choosing the simplest and most likely hypothesis until proven otherwise. And that is quite obviously that volcanoes can interrupt a long term temperature trend but, by their nature, and because they have limited energy, cannot stop it in it’s tracks. 

    So the onus is on those who believe otherwise to show EVIDENCE as to why their more complex hypothesis should be preferred. I haven’t heard any yet.

  27. tchannon says:

    Playing a little of the devil’s accoutrements I can understand massive eruptions will have fairly permanent effects, not been any of those in recorded history.

    What we might have is multiple processes with varying time constants. In the context here is there a mechanism which could lead to say a 10 year effect and of so can the magnitude be guessed?
    Eg. what is the extreme limit for stratospheric dust.

  28. Roger Andrews says:

    Tim

    Take a look at the temperature/ozone comparison in Figure 1c of the Thompson paper (link above).

  29. suricat says:

    wayne says: June 15, 2012 at 9:46 pm

    “This is where all of this linearality of all parameters in climate “science” usually really irks me. They just assume all parameters are equal in their ability to cause changes (due to all being linear) and I have never seen it that way.”

    It seems we do have a ‘common’, if limited, understanding between us. 🙂

    Guys! ‘Trends’ ‘trend’ and volcanic activity only generates ‘noise’ on a ‘trend’. However, climate, being the ‘chaotic’ animal that it is, can exhibit a ‘square wave’ habit when ‘noise’ interrupts a ‘trend’.

    On a more current note, does anyone think the current ‘kinks’ in the NH Polar Jet were generated by the recent Icelandic eruption adding density to the Polar Cell and inducing an accelerated ‘turnover’ rate of the Cell?

    Best regards, Ray.

  30. @ ArndB says:June 13, 2012 at 10:12 am
    Interesting point. Beck’s CO2 reconstruction ( http://www.biomind.de/realCO2/realCO2-1.htm) does show a change around 1941. I have read W Kreutz’s paper ( in German – can be downloaded from Beck’s website maintained by his daughter) on his thorough measurements over 1.5 years but he was not the only one to measure high CO2 (similar to present levels) around that time. Measurements were also made in India by Dr Misra and four different researchers in USA (see Beck’s sampling station list with comments and references). Kreutz in his statistics did not consider time lags but they are evident in his results on a daily and seasonal basis. Beck mentions time lags upto five years in his analysis over 150 yrs.. Various influences can change short and long term lags and this needs to be considered in any overall analysis and process model.

  31. ArndB says:

    @ cementafriend says: June 17, 2012 at 3:05 am

    It is always a pleasure to be reminded of the late E.G. Beck (1948-2010) who took interest in my Arctic Warming research (citing PACON, 2007, here, right column at: http://www.arctic-warming.com/ ), but presumably missed my last book on the Arctic (2009), online here: http://www.arctic-heats-up.com/ .
    However, my interest is the impact of the seas on climate change, which is well demonstrated during WWII. The extreme European winter 1939/40, see here: http://www.seaclimate.com/c/c1/images/buch/big/C1-6-TM4.png, can be explained with naval war activities (cooling the North- and Baltic Sea down earlier than usually). My recent book on the matter (2012, online here: http://www.seaclimate.com/index.html ), shows that a climatic shift (global cooling from 1940-1970) started in Europe and in winter 1939/40. Whether CO2 may have had a role in this and the next two extreme winters is a matter that other people have to prove. The view of E.G. Beck would have been most welcome.

  32. Wayne Job says:

    A very good overall explanation as to how our climate works, our unplumbed chaotic heat pump earth chasing its tail for equilibrium has many tricks.

  33. tchannon says:

    Would that be tale recursion?

  34. suricat says:

    tchannon. “Would that be tale recursion?”. Har, har. 😦

  35. Arfur Bryant says:

    Erm… Is it just possible that some people are getting carried away with the ability of a very, very, very minor trace gas to influence the global climate?

    [“Ozone absorbs long wave radiation from the Earth warming adjacent molecules of air regardless of their chemical composition.”]

    How does one O3 molecule impart enough heat to the adjacent 999,995 (ish) surrounding molecules at any split second to make a significant difference? (Yes, that assumes all molecules are roughly the same size.)

    [“In consequence parts of the polar stratosphere and the troposphere are permanently locked together in convection. Consequently ozone descends into the near surface atmosphere.  This process changes the distribution of atmospheric mass and therefore surface pressure.”]

    Similar question. At 10 ppm in the upper stratosphere and roughly 2 ppm in the troposphere, does anyone think there would be enough ozone-led descending convection to significantly change the atmospheric mass?

    Although I welcome the sentiment of different hypotheses and the undoubted work that has been put in, the idea seems to me to be as unlikely as ‘warmists’ telling me that CO2, at 395ppm, can significantly affect global temperature…

  36. Stephen Wilde says:

    Arfur,

    Ozone alters the vertical temperature profile of the atmosphere especially in the stratosphere and the vertical height of the tropopause with it. It is ozone that causes the complete reversal of the lapse rate up through the stratosphere.

    That is all one needs to allow the surface air circulation pattern to slide to and fro between equator and pole.

    It isn’t a matter of ozone imparting heat to other molecules. Instead it alters the rate of energy flow from surface to space.

  37. Arfur Bryant says:

    SW,

    Well, ok. I understand that it can affect the lapse rate in the stratosphere. But to use it as a tool to explain ‘climate change’ one needs to figure out how much effect it had back in 1850 before the advertised ‘AGW effect’. So… what was the level of O3 in 1850 compared to today? Does the change correlate with any observed increase in global temperature? If you can show that such a correlation exists, Erl may have a point.

    You’ll appreciate my comment about ‘imparting heat to other molecules’ was a quote from Erl’s post!

    [“That is all one needs to allow the surface air circulation pattern to slide to and fro between equator and pole.”]

    Are you saying that the Hadley, Polar and Ferrel cells are caused by Ozone alone?

  38. Stephen Wilde says:

    Arfur, I don’t agree with all that Erl says since I think my hypothesis is better and simpler.

    Some sort of circulation with permanent climate zones would be there with or without ozone. I’ve no idea how different it might be because the height of the tropopause and the gradient of that height between equator and pole is critical to climate zone positioning.

    My position is that it needn’t just be ozone itself but the balance between destruction and creation of ozone in the levels above the tropopause and that seems to be linked to solar activity.

    The thing is that small changes in the tropopause heights appear to make a much larger difference to the positions of the climate zones and thus global cloudiness and albedo which then changes the amount of energy getting into the oceans to fuel the climate system.

    Never mind 1850. We can go back to the LIA and the MWP before that.

    The LIA had more meridional / equatorward climate zones and colder mid latitudes at a time of quiet sun.

    The late 20th century and no doubt the MWP had more zonal / poleward climate zones and warmer mid latitudes at a time of active sun.

    I can’t yet prove it but I’d bet that the stratosphere was cooler in the MWP and warmer in the LIA.

    Here is my analysis:

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=6645

  39. Arfur Bryant says:

    SW,

    This will be my last post tonight as it is very late where I am!

    Many thanks for your reply. I have read your hypothesis and found it very interesting, thank you. It is certainly simpler but I suspect the jury is out on whether or not it is better. As usual, more data, and more accurate data, is required.

    However, I still maintain that the very low concentration of Ozone means it is highly unlikely to play a ‘significant’ part in the cAGW debate.

    [“Some sort of circulation with permanent climate zones would be there with or without ozone. I’ve no idea how different it might be because the height of the tropopause and the gradient of that height between equator and pole is critical to climate zone positioning.”]

    Yes, agreed. I doubt that Ozone is irrelevant, I just doubt it is significant.

    [“My position is that it needn’t just be ozone itself but the balance between destruction and creation of ozone in the levels above the tropopause and that seems to be linked to solar activity.”]

    Ok, so therefore the ’cause’ is solar activity. Ozone concentration is just one of many factors which can affect (however small) global temperature. The only way to avoid the frequency of various assumptions having to be made is to attempt to correlate empirical data with the hypothesis. Unless you know what the concentration of O3 was during the MWP, LIA and 1850, you will be – understandably – clutching at straws (however intellectual the straws may be).

    [“Never mind 1850. We can go back to the LIA and the MWP before that.”]

    I have to disagree here. You cannot dismiss 1850. The year 1850 is crucial to the cAGW debate. It is the year that the IPCC states ‘accurate data’ was initiated. Therefore it is the year from which we can compare apples with apples, as opposed to any other fruit. I repeat, in order to show some sort of validity for hypothesis regarding cAGW, you will have to display the data (in this case accurate Ozone levels) for 1850 and then correlate that data with any temperature rise since then.

    Further, as the IPCC (and warmists in general) insist that CO2 levels pre-1850 were steady (for a long time), you then have to show that your hypothesis can explain why the Greenhouse Effect was 32.1C in 1850 (from the current level of 33C less the observed rise of 0.9C). Were Ozone levels constant as well?

    You say that the LIA was at a time of inactive sun, and the late 20th century (and maybe?) the MWP was at a time of active sun. So, basically, it’s the sun then…

    I consider myself a true sceptic regarding cAGW. I agree with your antipathy for the CO2=cAGW hypothesis. With regard to Erl’s and your hypotheses, I just can’t see that the truly minute levels of O3 are worth getting worked up about without correlated data to support them.

    Regards,

  40. Roger Andrews says:

    @ Arfur Bryant

    “The only way to avoid the frequency of various assumptions having to be made is to attempt to correlate empirical data with the hypothesis.” Exactly right. That’s the way hypotheses are verified or falsified.

    “Unless you know what the concentration of O3 was during the MWP, LIA and 1850, you will be – understandably – clutching at straws (however intellectual the straws may be).”

    Unfortunately, we don’t know what the concentration of O3 was at these times and are unlikely ever to find out. But we do have TOMS/BUV O3 data going back to 1979, and they are at least worth a look. So here are three graphs. The first compares 60N-60S column O3 between since 1979 with UAH lower stratosphere temperatures (the gaps in the O3 record are months where coverage didn’t extend all the way from 60N-60S):

    There’s an obvious relationship between O3, lower stratosphere temperature and the 1982 El Chichón and 1991 Pinatubo volcanic eruptions.

    The second graph compares O3 with the NASA sunspot count:

    There’s a relationship here too, with upward excursions in the O3 record corresponding with solar maxima and downward excursions corresponding with solar minima.

    The third graph compares O3 with UAH lower troposphere temperatures:

    A lot has been written on this thread and elsewhere about interactions between the troposphere and stratosphere. Based on these data I don’t see any evidence for any, but maybe someone else can.

  41. Arfur Bryant says:

    @Roger Andrews,

    Thanks very much Roger, for those graphs.

    I agree that there does seem to be a correlation with the first two but not the third. Trouble is, the cAGW ‘theory’ (hypothesis/assertion etc) implies that area of concern is in the lower troposphere. That’s the third graph…

    Frankly, I am also at a loss to explain how any ozone-led change in stratospheric temperature can effect a change in the tropospheric pressure and therefore wind patterns to the extent hypothesised.

    All our weather occurs in the troposphere – that is where all the water vapour is. Above the troposphere the temperature remains isothermal for 5 kilometres upwards before it starts to increase dramatically. How do we get downward convection of air that is significantly warmer than the air below it to the extent that it can affect surface pressure patterns – and all this from less than 10 parts per million of Ozone? Hence my original post on this thread.

    Maybe I’m missing something obvious here…

  42. Stephen Wilde says:

    “How do we get downward convection of air that is significantly warmer than the air below it to the extent that it can affect surface pressure patterns”.

    Because downward convection isn’t needed.

    A warmer stratosphere causes the tropopause to fall in height whereas a cooler stratosphere causes the tropopause to rise in height.

    The solar effect is different at poles and equator so the gradient of the tropopause height changes between equator and pole.The tropopause is always higher at the equator.

    That change in height allows the permanent climate zones to slide poleward (for a higher tropopause at the poles relative to the equator) or equatorward (for a lower tropopause at the poles relative to the equator)

    It is that sliding to and fro which alters global cloudiness and albedo and thereby alters the amount of energy getting into the oceans which can then change the system from net cooling to net warming and back again.

    All one needs to change the height of the tropopause is a small change in the temperature of either troposphere or stratosphere.

    We can see the size of the effect from short term events known as sudden stratospheric warmings which push large areas of polar air equatorwad across middle latitudes from time to time.

    In fact it is already part of AGW theory and a feature of all the models that warming of the troposphere raises the height of the tropopause and pushes the climate zones poleward.

    However they don’t seem to realise that all the observations can be accounted for by natural processes involving sun and oceans which both vary in their effects on the vertical temperature profile.

    In theory I accept that more CO2 would raise the tropopause and shift the climate zones but to a miniscule degree compared to sun and oceans.

  43. Stephen Wilde says:

    As regards the third graph from Roger A consider the periods before and after 1998.

    Up to 1998 the stratosphere cools and the troposphere warms.

    After 1998 the stratosphere stops cooling and the troposphere stops warming.

    If we now see the stratosphere start to warm then the troposphere must cool.

    In fact I think the stratosphere does seem to have warmed a little but due to oceanic thermal inertia the cooling of the troposphere is not yet fully apparent. However ocean heat content has apparently fallen a little since about 2003 and that would be the first sign of less energy entering the climate system.

  44. Arfur Bryant says:

    Stephen,

    Many thanks. I feel I’ve learnt something from your posts.

    [“Because downward convection isn’t needed.”]

    Is it fair then to say that this is one area where you disagree with Erl, as he clearly states that “Convection at high latitudes involves the descent of ozone into the troposphere…”

    Other than that, I accept that your hypothesis regarding changes in tropopause altitudes could be proved to be valid with more (prolonged) data.

    As regards Roger Andrews’ graphs:

    The graphs show a decrease in ozone from 1979 to 1994, then a very slight increase from 1994 to 2012.

    Graph 1 shows the stratosphere cooling with reducing ozone, then constant temperature with very slight increase in ozone. Not much in the way of hard proof there.

    Graph 2 shows a slight correlation between increased sunspot activity and ozone levels, but the correlation is slight (I suggest).

    Graph 3 shows lower troposphere warming between 1979 and 1998, with a contemporaneous significant reduction in ozone. Then, it shows a definite correlation after the (1998 spike) of a slight warming from 2000 to 2012 with a slight increase in ozone levels.

    This doesn’t suggest a clear link between ozone and either tropopause altitude or LT temperature. At the same time, it doesn’t suggest an anthropogenic link either.

    I do accept that, if you are correct, a cooling stratosphere will lead to a warming troposphere but I think the link between ozone and global temperature seems very tenuous.

    Either way, thank you for your explanations and time.

    Regards,

  45. suricat says:

    @ Stephen Wild:

    I concur that a warmer stratosphere expedites global cooling, thus, reduces the altitude of the tropopause, and the ‘converse’.

    However, your statement of “The solar effect is different at poles and equator so the gradient of the tropopause height changes between equator and pole. The tropopause is always higher at the equator.” seems a ‘duplicitous’ term. The major influence for the inimical atmospheric depth of the troposphere between the equator and the poles is due mainly to planetary revolution.

    OK, so Earth’s ‘reactance of the day’ alters its ‘radiance’ pattern, but the ‘aspect ratio’ of the Earth’s atmosphere is basically set by Earth’s ‘rotation rate’ and the laws relating to the conical pendulum (centrifuge).

    Best regards, Ray.

  46. Roger Andrews says:

    The NOAA/NCDC “ratpac” data set extends the lower troposphere temperature record back to 1958. The spikes caused by volcanic eruptions (Agung 1963, El Chichón 1982, Pinatubo 1991) are shown in red.

  47. Arfur Bryant says:

    Roger A,

    That graph actually shows lower stratosphere temperature.

    Do you happen to have a graph (or data) showing the historic height of the tropopause? That may help address the different hypotheses, particularly comparing it to lower trop temperature.

  48. Arfur Bryant says:

    Roger,

    Oui, c’est vrai.

    Merci bien.

  49. Roger Andrews says:

    Looking back over these graphs a revolutionary new theory occurs to me.

    The graphs show tropopause height decreasing between 1958 and 1965, and if the SAT record is a tropopause height proxy – which it seems to be – it would have been decreasing between about 1940 and 1958 as well. But in or around 1965 the trend abruptly reversed course and tropopause height began to increase, and if we accept Stephen Wilde’s hypothesis that a rising tropopause is caused by an increase in surface temperatures then global warming began when this reversal occurred, not during the PDO “phase shift” of the mid-1970s.

    And if global warming did begin abruptly in the mid-1960s, what caused it? Well, the only event of any climatic significance that occurred around this time was the 1963 Agung eruption, and the graphs show that the stratospheric warming caused by this eruption correlates closely with the tropopause height trend reversal.

    So here’s the revolutionary theory. Global warming was caused by the 1963 Agung eruption, which “tipped” the earth’s climate from a stable cooling state into a stable warming state.

    Now let’s see if anyone’s still awake out there. 🙂

  50. Arfur Bryant says:

    Wel, I’m certainly not nodding off just yet! However…

    [“And if global warming did begin abruptly in the mid-1960s, what caused it? “]

    Well, the problem with most answers to that question is that they can’t cope with the follow-up question: “So, in that case, what caused the warming of 1910 to 1945 (which is almost exactly the same as the warming of 1975-1998)?”

    Now, if you can find suitable ‘volcanic’ candidates which can explain the warmings of 1875-1878, 1910-1945 and 1975-1998 and the coolings of 1878-1910, 1945-1957 and the current ‘lack of warming’ since 1998 – you may be on to a winner! 🙂

    I find the stratospheretropopause ideas interesting. The ‘ratpac’ stratosphere graph certainly seems to indicate a levelling off this century but I’m not sure of the cause/effect relationship…

    Regards,

  51. suricat says:

    Hmm. The only thing I can think of is a shed-load of UV within the insolation spectra. This not only generates a denser ‘ozonosphere’, it also warms the tropopause by reducing local IR emission from the tropo.

    Best regards, Ray Dart.

  52. suricat says:

    BTW, that’s to say “reducing local IR emission ‘to space’ from the tropo”

    Ray.

  53. Roger Andrews says:

    Arfur:

    The 1910-1945 SAT warming coincided with a combination of increasing solar activity, an upswing in the 60-year Saturn-Jupiter planetary cycle and a “warm” phase of the AMO. The 1940-1975 SAT cooling coincided with a flattening of solar activity, a downswing in the 60-year planetary cycle and a transition to a “cold” phase of the AMO.

    The 1975-2002 SAT warming coincided with ENSO-triggered releases of stored ocean heat which themselves appear to be triggered by solar cycles, although I don’t know how. The reason for the lack of warming since 2002 is simply that there haven’t been any ocean heat releases since 2002 (See https://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/03/16/roger-andrews-how-the-sun-caused-all-the-recent-global-warming/)

    However, the only unusual event I can find that correlates in any way, shape or form with the abrupt tropopause height trend reversal in 1965 is the Agung eruption, which would have had at least a temporary impact on tropopause height.

    So I ain’t giving up yet 🙂

    (Incidentally, the 1910-1945 and 1975 -2002 SAT warming periods were actually quite different. The 1975-2002 warming affected all of the earth outside the Antarctic, but the 1910-1940 warming was largely confined to the Arctic, as was the 1940-75 cooling, which largely canceled the 1910-1940 warming out).

  54. oldbrew says:

    SAT = Surface Air Temperature

  55. Arfur Bryant says:

    Roger,

    Thanks for the info.

    [“Incidentally, the 1910-1945 and 1975 -2002 SAT warming periods were actually quite different. The 1975-2002 warming affected all of the earth outside the Antarctic, but the 1910-1940 warming was largely confined to the Arctic, as was the 1940-75 cooling, which largely canceled the 1910-1940 warming out.”]

    Yes, agreed. I was simply referring to the extent of the ‘global’ warming. All the factors you mention are natural, which effectively proves that natural factors are at least as capable – if not more capable – of adjusting the global temperature (either way) as any ‘anthropogenic’ factors. It is this simple and fairly obvious observation that many pro-cAGW supporters have a problem with.

    Thanks also for the info about Agung.

    Regards,

  56. Arfur Bryant says:

    [suricat says:
    June 24, 2012 at 12:23 am]

    I tend to think the majority influence of the height (altitude) of the tropopause is the SAT/lapse rate relationship. I understand that the rotational forces will tend to ‘pool’ a larger portion of the atmosphere above the equator but the temperature at the equator is also the warmest and therefore the tropopause is both higher and colder than at the poles.

    However, I also accept that my detailed knowledge is limited! 🙂

  57. suricat says:

    Arfur Bryant.

    “However, I also accept that my detailed knowledge is limited”. Probably not as ‘limited’ as mine bro! 🙂

    As an ‘engineer’, perhaps I see the ‘lapse rate’ differently. It alters with the amount of water in it and, oddly enough, the SAT is suppressed by the presence of surface water. If you want me to expand on this I shall.

    Just contemplate on ‘Hadley Cell rising at the equator cools’ and ‘Polar Cell falling at a pole warms’ for now. 🙂

    Best regards, Ray.

  58. ArndB says:

    E: Roger Andrews says: June 24, 2012 at 4:38 am & Arfur Bryant says:
    June 24, 2012 at 4:15 pm
    [“Incidentally, the 1910-1945 and 1975 -2002 SAT warming periods were actually quite different. The 1975-2002 warming affected all of the earth outside the Antarctic, but the 1910-1940 warming was largely confined to the Arctic, as was the 1940-75 cooling, which largely canceled the 1910-1940 warming out.”]

    The early warming period in the last century started at Spitsbergen in winter 1918/19, (primarily in the Atlantic-section of the Arctic Ocean (see the two temperature-images: http://www.arctic-heats-up.com/img/c1-p1.jpg ; & http://www.arctic-heats-up.com/img/c2-p3.jpg ), subsequently raising the temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere in North America (USA) until 1933, in Europe until winter 1939/40 (in detail here: http://www.arctic-heats-up.com/ ) .
    Interesting is what brought the trend change about in winter 1939/40, starting with three extreme winter in Europe (1939/40, 1940/41 and 1941/42), and an extreme winter in Japan 1944/45; see my comments above:
    __ArndB says: June 13, 2012 at 10:12 am
    __ArndB says: June 17, 2012 at 11:22 am
    and still needs to be explained. For winter 1939/40 see: Chapter 1 ff: http://www.seaclimate.com/c/c1/c1.html

    The precise dating of the start of the Arctic warming (1919) and commencement of the global cooling 20 years later may help to identify any anthropogenic contribution in these two events. See for example Sweden temperatures (Jan-March) 1900-2000, with the exceptional years war years (1949-42): http://www.seaclimate.com/e/e2/images/buch/big/e2-1-.png .

  59. Roger Andrews says:

    ArndB:

    “The early warming period in the last century started at Spitsbergen in winter 1918/19”.

    This much-cited warming is almost certainly a spurious effect caused by a change at the Isfjord Radio station – most probably a station relocation – in April 1919. Certainly no other Arctic record shows anywhere near 6C of warming around this time.

    “The precise dating of the start of the Arctic warming (1919) ….”

    The Arctic warming started around 1920 in Greenland and the North Atlantic but the Arctic as a whole started warming before 1890.

    “…. and commencement of the global cooling 20 years later …”

    The cooling started around 1930 in Greenland, around 1945 in Siberia, around 1950 in the Hudson Bay area and (arguably) not until 1960 in Japan. There was no “global” start date. Many regions in fact show no significant cooling period at all, including most of Europe and Central Asia and just about all of the Southern Hemisphere.

    “Interesting is what brought the trend change about in winter 1939/40, starting with three extreme winter in Europe (1939/40, 1940/41 and 1941/42), and an extreme winter in Japan 1944/45 ….”

    These extreme winters coincide with a trend reversal from warming to cooling in NW Europe but not in Central Europe, Eastern Europe or Japan. What I find most interesting is that they occurred in and around war zones. Could they have been related to a diminished UHI effect?

  60. Arfur Bryant says:

    Suricat…

    Thanks. That’s why I love this site. There is always something to learn and discuss in a polite and civil manner!

    [“As an ‘engineer’, perhaps I see the ‘lapse rate’ differently. It alters with the amount of water in it and, oddly enough, the SAT is suppressed by the presence of surface water. If you want me to expand on this I shall.”]

    Well, yes, the saturated adiabatic lapse rate varies with moisture content (tending to be close to the dry adiabatic lapse rate in the upper troposphere) but, overall, I ‘believe’ (nb) that the ICAO lapse rate of 2 deg C per 1000ft is a reasonable approximation globally.

    Still, happy to learn something new… 🙂

  61. Arfur Bryant says:

    ArndB…

    Thanks for the info.

    [“The precise dating of the start of the Arctic warming (1919) and commencement of the global cooling 20 years later may help to identify any anthropogenic contribution in these two events.”]

    Its interesting that the IPCC states clearly that the commencement of ‘anthropogenic warming effects’ started in 1750. However, most pro-cAGW commenters will say that anthro effects started in or around 1960. They base this idea on various graphs issued by the IPCC which actually don’t show warming until 1960 or later, so contradicting itself. I tend to think they do this to avoid any discussion about prior warming periods. So its interesting to read about some more specific, local areas. I know the ‘global’ datasets are not truly so, but its kinda fun turning ‘their’ own data against them…

  62. Roger Andrews says:

    Arfur:

    Thought you might like to see the official GISS estimates of anthropogenic forcing (well-mixed greenhouse gases + land use changes + black carbon + aerosol direct & indirect effects) since 1880, as published by Hansen & Company:

    Points of interest are:

    1. Zero increase in anthrop. forcing between 1880 and 1960 (!)

    2. The current and 2005 versions of the plot are the same before 1990 but diverge after 1990, with the current version adjusted downwards to show lower net anthrop. forcings. According to GISS this adjustment was applied purely because recent SO2 emissions from coal plants in China were underestimated in the 2005 version. It had absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the earth wasn’t warming up as fast as AGW theory says it should. 😉

  63. suricat says:

    [“As an ‘engineer’, perhaps I see the ‘lapse rate’ differently. It alters with the amount of water in it and, oddly enough, the SAT is suppressed by the presence of surface water. If you want me to expand on this I shall.”]

    “Well, yes, the saturated adiabatic lapse rate varies with moisture content (tending to be close to the dry adiabatic lapse rate in the upper troposphere) but, overall, I ‘believe’ (nb) that the ICAO lapse rate of 2 deg C per 1000ft is a reasonable approximation globally.”

    I have to disagree. Altitudes of 1-2 km above surface exhibit the property of evaporative cooling of the surface, thus, the local lapse rate is altered by the ‘latentcy’ factor/activity of the local hydrosphere. IMHO, an ‘approximation’ of lapse rate can only be taken from altitudes ‘above’ local ‘cloud top’ altitude.

    The reasoning behind my conclusion is ‘private’ to mails between Ferenc Miskcolczi and myself. I’ll mail Ferenc to inquire as to whether he’s happy for ‘disclosure’ just now if you’re interested, but the last time I mailed him he was indisposed after returning home from his son’s wedding to find his home flooded. So don’t hold your breath. 🙂

    Best regards, Ray.

  64. Edim says:

    The alleged starting point of AGW is very important. If CO2 had any significant warming effect, AGW could have not started before ~1960. That’s also the consensus understanding.

    Local copy of image

    The difference between “human influence” and “no human influence” is the alleged AGW. I expect more epicycles.

  65. ArndB says:

    Roger Andrews says: June 25, 2012 at 7:35 pm
    @: [This much-cited warming is almost certainly a spurious effect caused by a change at the Isfjord Radio station – most probably a station relocation – in April 1919. Certainly no other Arctic record shows anywhere near 6C of warming around this time.]
    REPLY: The temperature had already been exceptional high during the winter 1918/19. (See Spitsbergen data 1914-1926 , here: http://www.arctic-warming.com/a.php)
    According B,J. Birkenland (Meteorologischen Zeitschrift, June 1930; p.235) there has been no change of location between 1914 and 1926.

    @“The precise dating of the start of the Arctic warming (1919) ….”
    [The Arctic warming started around 1920 in Greenland and the North Atlantic but the Arctic as a whole started warming before 1890. ]
    REPLY: For details on the start of the Arctic warming see Chapter 7; http://www.arctic-heats-up.com/chapter_7.html, that shows that a warming trend occurred in North Norway already before 1920; respectively check Johannessen et al (2004) with more details here: http://www.arctic-heats-up.com/pdf/3_1.pdf .

    @ [The cooling started…… There was no “global” start date.]
    REPLY: All global temperature graphs show a trend change around 1939/40, here IPCC, 2007 (WG 1): http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/figure-1-3.html

    @ [These extreme winters coincide with a trend reversal from warming to cooling in NW Europe but not in Central Europe, Eastern Europe or Japan. What I find most interesting is that they occurred in and around war zones. Could they have been related to a diminished UHI effect?]
    REPLY: My previous references deal only and with the winter temperatures, with low influence of the sun, but a big impact from the oceans and seas (e.g. North- and Baltic Sea). The first three war winter had been extreme in Northern Europe including Central and Eastern Europe. See for example “Eastern Baltic mean air T°C” at http://www.seaclimate.com/b/b.html .
    Here is the temperature map for the three winters 1940-1942, http://www.seaclimate.com/b/images/buch/big/B-3.png showing all the world is warm only Europe shivers, see 1st and 2nd Quarter. The main reason is the to early release of the summer heat from the seas around Great Britain and the Baltic Sea by naval activities, whereby each sea area may have responded differently, but to the same effect.
    Regards AB

  66. Arfur Bryant says:

    Roger Andrews says:
    June 25, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    Thanks Roger, that graph is an absolute hoot!

    It shows:

    1. That, according to the pro-cAGW brigade there was no anthro warming before 1960 which then leaves the IPCC statement that anthro factors started in 1750 as utter poppycock (which I kind of knew anyway). [“The understanding of anthropogenic warming and cooling influences on climate has improved since the TAR, leading to very high confidence[7] that the global average net effect of human activities since 1750 has been one of warming…”]. From AR4.

    2. That, therefore, ANY warming or cooling periods before 1960 had to be from natural factors which means that natural factors are at least as capable as so-called ‘significant’ radiative forcing factors.

    3. That they shouldn’t make bold statements without checking the facts first (which we all kind of knew…)

    4. That your last sentence is probably 100% correct…

    Thanks a lot! 🙂

    Regards,

    ps. do you have the source link handy?

  67. Arfur Bryant says:

    suricat says:
    June 26, 2012 at 2:48 am

    Ray,

    Like I said, I’m always keen to learn new stuff, so I look forward to hearing more from you or Ferenc!

    Best regards,

  68. Roger Andrews says:

    Arfur

    Glad you liked the graph.

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/modelforce/RadF.txt gives the updated data.

    However, one interesting point is that when you add up the anthropogenic forcings shown on this table you get 0.9 watts/sq m between 1880 and 2000, but when you add them up on Hansen’s bar chart.

    You get 1.5 watts/sq m since 1750

    And when you add them up using the GISS Model E forcings

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/modelE/transient/climsim_table1.pdf

    You get 1.2 watts/sq m since 1880

    Maybe we should change the name from “forcings” to “whatwouldyoulikethemtobe-ings”

  69. Arfur Bryant says:

    Concur.

    Or possibly “wearemakingitupaswegoalong-ings”.

    Fond regards,

  70. . says:

    Arfur Bryant.

    Mail sent. I’ll report any update here, as a thread with ‘Erl Happ’ in the header seems a fitting place for any possible detail on the surface radiative disconnect. 🙂

    Best regards, Ray.

  71. Arfur Bryant says:

    Ray,

    Cheers mate! 🙂

    Arfur

  72. Brian H says:

    Erl;
    Edit suggestion: “to the East of the Gulf of Mexico” on that map actually seems to be west of the Gulf, in fact in the Pacific.

  73. .suricat says:

    Arfur Bryant.

    I’ve got to put my hands up to being guilty of taking my eye off the ball here. I’ve had a run in with Pneumonia and was just released from Hospital yesterday. 😦

    This has led to a ‘feed-ball’ of mail backlog which includes a reply from Ferenc. He says:

    “Hi Ray, I am on travel to Alaska, will be back to Hampton by the middle of August. Please feel free to distribute my computational results to anyone interested. In case there are questions, please give them my e-mail address: fmiskolczi@cox.net.
    best regards,

    Ferenc”

    So there we have it! Though, the best I can do in my condition, is to cobble the data together and offer to assist tchanon make a presentation of it. 🙂

    Best regards, Ray Dart (suricat)