Cooling role of particulate matter on warming Earth stronger than previously thought

Posted: December 3, 2019 by oldbrew in atmosphere, climate, Clouds, IPCC, modelling, research

So IPCC climate theory now means that cleaner air is more of a problem. Classic.

The relationship between aerosols (particulate matter) and their cooling effect on the Earth due to the formation of clouds is more than twice as strong as was previously thought, reports

As the amounts of aerosols decrease, climate models that predict a faster warming of the Earth are more probable.

These are the conclusions of researcher Otto Hasekamp from SRON Netherlands Institute for Space Research, who published the results in Nature Communications. He carried out his research together with Edward Gryspeerdt from Imperial College London, and Johannes Quaas from Leipzig University.

Since the 1970s, scientists have known that particulate matter in the air can give rise to clouds that reflect more light than clouds in a “clean” atmosphere. Clouds in “polluted” air contain more water droplets. Their stronger reflection has a cooling effect on the Earth.

Suitable particles

Water droplets arise when water condenses on aerosol particles. Thanks to the laboratory work of colleagues, it has already been known for some time that some aerosol particles are more suitable as condensation nuclei than others. The suitability depends on the size of the particle as well as how spherical it is.

“For example, desert dust particles barely adsorb any water to form cloud droplets, whereas industrial aerosol is good at forming cloud droplets,” Hasekamp explains. The more suitable condensation nuclei there are in the atmosphere, the greater the number of cloud droplets there will be, and the better the cloud formed will be able to reflect light.

New analysis method

Satellites have also been used in the past to investigate the relationship between the quantity of aerosols and the quantity of cloud water droplets.

Back then, the number of condensation nuclei was estimated by measuring the extent to which light was attenuated by the particulate matter present. That led to weak estimations of the effect of aerosols on clouds.

Hasekamp and his fellow researchers used a new analysis method developed by SRON on existing satellite data from the French satellite POLDER to derive not only the quantity but also the size and shape of aerosol particles and their suitability as condensation nuclei.

Using this approach, the researchers obtained a more accurate picture of the relationship between aerosols and their cooling effect.

More than twice as strong as estimated

“In its Fifth Assessment Report, published in 2013, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the United Nations emphasized the importance of satellite results that revealed a weak aerosol effect on clouds, whereas many models reveal a strong effect,” Hasekamp concludes.

“We think that the effect is more than twice as strong as estimated by the IPCC.”

Full report here.

  1. stpaulchuck says:

    “… than previously thought”

    that seems to be a nearly daily statement in the climate circus. They were all so sure of this that and the other, but now.. oh my, maybe not.
    “Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts” – Richard Feynman
    something they demonstrate daily

  2. p.g.sharrow says:

    Here we go again! Back in the 1970s Global cooling was the rage. Human caused Aerosols & particulate mater were the causation ! Clouds were the greatest factor and Jones and Hanson needed access to government super computers to compute long term climate change. Then the cycle shifted towards warming and a new paradigm was needed. How about CO2 caused warming? that BS was used back in the late 1890s. Aerosols and particulates will work for both warming and cooling arguments and we can blame Humans for Global warming AND cooling at the same time. Win – Win!…pg

  3. oldbrew says:

    They used to blame the 1945-1975 slight cooling on aerosols, but later decided it was easier and/or better to ‘adjust’ the data – in order to iron out the annoying dip on the graph.

  4. cognog2 says:

    Perhaps we should go back to the age of steam. Lots of particles and lots of water. We just have to control the type of particles. Bingo !! Geo-engineering in a nutshell. Grants please.

  5. JB says:

    “As POLDER only provides viable measurement above oceans, the estimation of Hasekamp and his colleagues still has a large uncertainty margin.”

    Not a word about HOW MUCH cooling. ½ºC? ¼º? 2?

    As Clara Peller exclaimed, “Where’s the beef?” for Wendy’s, where’s the data? What’s the beef?

  6. Chaswarnertoo says:

    Oh, FFS! Desperation from the warmists.

  7. oldbrew says:

    Geologist Dr. Don Easterbrook’s new book on solar climate link is out: ‘It is unequivocally clear that climate changes, large & small, are driven by fluctuations of the sun’s magnetic field’

    The data is truly remarkable˗˗every cool period was characterized by low sunspot numbers, indicating low strength of the sun’s magnetic field, and high production rates of beryllium˗10 and radiocarbon, indicating high intensity of cosmic rays. Every warm period was coincident with high sunspot numbers and low production rates of beryllium˗10 and radiocarbon.

  8. oldbrew says:

  9. oldbrew says:

    DECEMBER 4, 2019
    Subsiding air parcels are among the causes of hot spells

    So far, climate researchers have considered hot air masses from the Sahara to be the primary cause of extreme temperatures. However, the results of the current project reveal that other atmospheric factors are of much higher significance than expected. Within the DynProHeat partial project, scientists analyze hot spells under a so far neglected aspect. “Our studies revealed that hot spells are not only caused by hot air from the south and locally very dry soils,” Andreas Fink says. Fink and his colleague Professor Joaquim G. Pinto think that the main causes are air parcels coming from the Atlantic Ocean, which quickly subside from heights of 3 to 5 kilometers down to ground level during a summer high above Germany.

    “These air parcels are compressed by the higher air pressure and are heated up,” Fink says and illustrates this by the example of an air pump, where air is also heated up by pressure. “For other air parcels, this subsiding and heating process takes place some days earlier south or east of Germany. Then, these air parcels are led to Germany close to the ground in the high-pressure area and are further heated up by the strong daily solar irradiation.” Accuracy in tracking the path covered by such an air parcel is increasing due to better meteorological diagnosis methods and improved data. [bold added]
    – – –
    Hardly surprising?

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