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Global Warming Ended in 2002 - 5 - 7 Decades of Cooling Forecast

Gill

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Dr. Qing-Bin Lu of the University of Waterloo in Canada just published a peer reviewed paper in the Journal of Cosmology, a peer-reviewed publication produced at Harvard-Smithsonian’s Center for Astrophysics. Dr. Lu's findings indicate that the true cause of the warming experienced between 1970 and 1997 were CFCs, which were phased out in the late 1980s.

ABSTRACT
A recent observation strikingly showed that global warming from 1950 to 2000 was most likely caused by the significant increase of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in the Earth atmosphere (Lu, 2010). Here, three key questions are addressed: (1) How could CO2 play a negligible role in recent global warming in view of its extremely high concentrations of ≥300 ppm? (2) Is there other evidence from satellite or ground measurements for the saturation in warming effect of CO2 and other non-CFC gases? And (3) could the greenhouse effect of CFCs alone account for the rise of 0.5~0.6 K in global temperature since 1950? First, the essential feature of the Earth blackbody radiation is elucidated. Then re-analyses of observed data about global temperature change with variations of halocarbons and CO2, the atmospheric transmittance of the infrared radiation and the 1970-1997 change in outgoing longwave radiation spectra of the Earth are presented. It follows by new theoretical calculations of the greenhouse effect of halocarbons. The results strength the conclusion that humans were responsible for global warming in late 20th century, but CFCs, rather than CO2 , were the major culprit; a long-term global cooling starting around 2002 is expected to continue for next five to seven decades.
http://www.probeinternational.org/Qing-Bin Lu on CFCs and Global Cooling.pdf

Dr. Lu's findings make a lot of sense and tally well with real world observations. His paper tears IPCC climate models to shreds. He also validates a claim made by most scientists skeptical of global warming, i.e. water vapor plays a much bigger role than models give it credit for.
 

Deuce

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Hey, a skeptic's argument that I've (sortof) not seen before! Thanks. Although I qualify it, because the previous claim skeptics would make was that global warming stopped in 1995, a statement that required both blatant statistical cherry-picking and a really, really loose definition of the word "stopped."
(the reality is that during one particular, short period there was no "statistically significant" warming, because the sample size is too small. extend the period one year in either direction and you've got statistically significant warming again)

I'll gradually read up on this throughout the afternoon. Hopefully it wont turn out to be just another statistical cherry-pick or serious math error.

Off the top of my head are a few questions, which I hope the paper will answer:
1) What about the warming pre-1950, when CFC's weren't used to this degree?
2) It mentions outgoing infrared radiation until 1997. What happened after that?
3) Is there actually evidence that the world began cooling in 2002? 2002-2009 is a small period of time, not really enough to establish a solid trend, especially considering the 11-year solar cycle and 5-ish year El Nino cycle, such a cooling trend could very well be caused by that. Also, 2010 appears to be a new record breaker so far.

Edit: If these guys are right and the problem was CFCs rather than CO2, because CO2's warming effect has become saturated, that would be pretty sweet. That would mean we've already done all the damage we're capable of and additional CO2 wont cause any additional damage.
 
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Gill

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Hey, a skeptic's argument that I've (sortof) not seen before! Thanks. Although I qualify it, because the previous claim skeptics would make was that global warming stopped in 1995, a statement that required both blatant statistical cherry-picking and a really, really loose definition of the word "stopped."
(the reality is that during one particular, short period there was no "statistically significant" warming, because the sample size is too small. extend the period one year in either direction and you've got statistically significant warming again)

I'll gradually read up on this throughout the afternoon. Hopefully it wont turn out to be just another statistical cherry-pick or serious math error.

Off the top of my head are a few questions, which I hope the paper will answer:
1) What about the warming pre-1950, when CFC's weren't used to this degree?
2) It mentions outgoing infrared radiation until 1997. What happened after that?
3) Is there actually evidence that the world began cooling in 2002? 2002-2009 is a small period of time, not really enough to establish a solid trend, especially considering the 11-year solar cycle and 5-ish year El Nino cycle, such a cooling trend could very well be caused by that. Also, 2010 appears to be a new record breaker so far.

Edit: If these guys are right and the problem was CFCs rather than CO2, because CO2's warming effect has become saturated, that would be pretty sweet. That would mean we've already done all the damage we're capable of and additional CO2 wont cause any additional damage.
Thoughtful reply with the exception of the comment on 1995. I don't know of any reputable skeptic that claims warming stopped in 1995.
 

Deuce

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Thoughtful reply with the exception of the comment on 1995. I don't know of any reputable skeptic that claims warming stopped in 1995.
The 1995 thing was more a result of the Daily Mail's inability to grasp what they're being told combined with the echo chamber that is the blogosphere. From there it got picked up by all sorts of not-even-amateur skeptics, Beck/Hannity/Limbaugh/Etc, and people like Newt Gingrich and Senator Inhofe. (R-OK) You're correct in that those guys aren't "reputable skeptics," they just regurgitate anything that seems to support their beliefs. So, while most of the skeptical scientists steered clear of this obviously incorrect statement, the idea itself got a lot of attention.

http://www.factsandarts.com/articles/no-significant-global-warming-since-1995/
http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...0dCCBA&usg=AFQjCNFbdMvR_PZZA0qNHwhBttWp9awCVg

edit: On further inspection, even Anthony Watts, supposedly reputable, picks up on this.
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/03/...lindzen-on-statistically-significant-warming/
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/03/...-flat-temperature-anomaly-in-the-last-decade/
(although he does admit a 10-year period is not typical for measuring global temperature trends)
 
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Deuce

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Ok, so referring back to the article in the OP:

I started off investigating this with skepticism about some of the claims you see in the abstract. Specifically the idea that CO2's absorption spectrum has reached saturation and the claim that temperatures have dropped since 2002. The other big sticky point is that the author of the paper claims that CFC's ability to affect temperatures is stronger than we'd previously calculated, but he doesn't offer any physical explanation for it. If CFC's are having such a strong effect on temperature, how are they creating that effect?

Radiative Forcing
The greenhouse effect depends upon the absorption of outgoing radiation, so measuring the outgoing radiation and how much of it gets absorbed is obviously important. Qing bin-lu makes the claim that the radiative forcing of CFC's hasn't been measured, but is calculated statistically. He's incorrect.
From here:
http://ams.confex.com/ams/pdfpapers/100737.pdf


(water vapor is removed from this graph, as it is a feedback rather than a forcing)

It has been measured, and it's far lower than CO2's total effect. The reason is that we're measuring CO2 in parts per million and CFC's in parts per trillion. There's just not enough of the stuff in the atmosphere.

Furthermore, CFC levels in the atmosphere have begun to tank pretty steadily over the last decade, because worldwide emissions have more or less ceased. During this period, temperature has continued to rise. Which segues nicely into:


Temperature Drop?

As you can see, CFC levels dropped rapidly after about 1990. So what has the temperature done since then?


(from NASA GISS)
Hmm.

Ok, what about since 2002, specifically? Have temperatures really dropped since then?

Well, seeing as how the last 12 months have been the hottest on record, this is a hard case to make. Looking at that temperature chart, there definitely seems to still be a positive trend. Furthermore, the oceans are continuing to accumulate heat.

Is global warming still happening?



Saturation?
Is the CO2 effect saturated?

I haven't been able to directly access papers that discuss this, only references to those papers, so far, but there appears to be evidence that at least up through 2006 (the last paper that discusses this was 2007) the outgoing radiation in CO2's absorption range has continued to decrease. (meaning more is getting absorbed) This is measured by orbiting satellites.

Furthermore, we can measure the downward longwave infrared radiation. This radiation is released by the earth, gets absorbed by greenhouse gasses, and is re-emitted in all directions. This causes some of that energy to come back down. Measuring this, we see the spectrum absorbed by CO2 is increasing still. (meaning that more is being absorbed on the way out and getting spit back down at us)

In summary, the paper in the OP relies on several assumptions that appear to be faulty.
 
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kaya'08

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Dr. Qing-Bin Lu of the University of Waterloo in Canada just published a peer reviewed paper in the Journal of Cosmology, a peer-reviewed publication produced at Harvard-Smithsonian’s Center for Astrophysics. Dr. Lu's findings indicate that the true cause of the warming experienced between 1970 and 1997 were CFCs, which were phased out in the late 1980s.



http://www.probeinternational.org/Qing-Bin Lu on CFCs and Global Cooling.pdf

Dr. Lu's findings make a lot of sense and tally well with real world observations. His paper tears IPCC climate models to shreds. He also validates a claim made by most scientists skeptical of global warming, i.e. water vapor plays a much bigger role than models give it credit for.
I will look into that. The smithsonian institute is hardly an unreliable source. Thanks for the post.
 
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