The global warming hysteriacs have gained their worries from the output of global climate models. The models have become a proxy for actual observational data. If the models say the world will warm, no one looks out the window to actually see that the world is freezing. The world can't be freezing if the models say it is warming. There is an implicit belief that like the Bible, the models are infallible.
But then, along comes a study of the outgoing radiative flux --the heat leaving the earth--which shows that not all things are as the models say. Typical climate models say that as the world heats up, and thus heats the oceans less heat will escape to space. This leads people to talk about tipping points. If the feed backs to an increase in CO2 is positive then the climate system will be driven further and further from the present state, causing a tipping point.
"A number of sessions examined the frightening possibility that warming temperatures could trigger catastrophic tipping points, such as the loss of the Amazon rainforest through drought, which would create a vicious feedback. For example, modelers from the U.K.’s Met Office presented new data showing that even a global cessation of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 could lead to a loss of up to 40% of the Amazon rainforest. “We thought we didn’t need to worry till we got to 3°C of warming,” says Pope (see graphic)." Eli Kintisch, "Projections of Climate Change Go From Bad to Worse, Scientists Report," Science, 323(2009), p.1546-1547
"The Intergovernmental Panel on
Climate Change (IPCC) reports indicate that,
if concentrations of atmospheric carbon
dioxide continue to increase, other serious
impacts on human society (e.g., sea level
rise) will probably occur. Undoubtedly,
other tipping points or breakpoints are
looming at higher concentrations, such as 535
ppm atmospheric carbon dioxide.” John Cairns, Jr. “Assimilative Capacity Revisited” Asian J. Exp. Sci., Vol. 22, No. 2, 2008; 177-182, p. 178
The problem is that all of this talk about tipping points is based upon global climate models, which have become gospel. Don't look out the window; believe the models.
Now along comes Lindzen and Choi who point out that actual observation of the outgoing radiative heat flux increases as the sea surface temperature (SST) rises. In other words, as the sea's temperature rises, the amount of heat leaving the earth also rises.
Why is this important? Because all the climate models say the exact opposite. All the climate models say that as the sea surface temperature rises, the outgoing radiative heat flux declines. Observation, which is what science is supposed to be based upon, says something entirely different.
Below is a picture showing the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE) observational relationship between sea surface temperature and outgoing flux. The relationship is positive. More SST heat, more outgoing flux. Notice the upper left picture. That is the actual observational data. All the other pictures are from cllimate models. Notice that the climate models don't match the observational data.
What does this mean? It means that science should not trust models. It should trust observational data. It means that computer models are just that--computer models. They aren't reality even if the hysteriacs try to say that they represent reality.
If the models miss a major negative feedback loop then their conclusions can't be correct. And if the conclusions are not correct, then we don't need to fix what ain't broken. We don't need to destroy the economy with carbon taxes in order to prevent what won't happen.
The IPCC says this about the climate sensitivity to additional CO2. The definition of climate sensitivity is in the first sentence below. The amount the IPCC claims is in the second sentence and is bolded.
"The equilibrium climate sensitivity is a measure of the
climate system response to sustained radiative forcing.
It is not a projection but is defined as the global average
surface warming following a doubling of carbon
dioxide concentrations. It is likely to be in the range
2°C to 4.5°C with a best estimate of about 3°C, and is
very unlikely to be less than 1.5°C. " IPCC, 2007: Summary for Policymakers. In: Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Solomon, S., D. Qin, M. Manning, Z. Chen, M. Marquis, K.B. Averyt, M.Tignor and H.L. Miller (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA., P. 12
Lindzen and Choi note
"For sensitivities less than 2[deg]C, the data readily distinguish
different sensitivities, and ERBE data appear to
demonstrate a climate sensitivity of about 0.5 [deg]C which is
easily distinguished from sensitivities given by models." Lindzen, R. S., and Y.-S. Choi (2009), On the determination of climate feedbacks from ERBE data, Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L16705 http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2009/2009GL039628.shtml, page 5
In other words, the sensitivity is 1/6th of what the global warming hysterical IPCC says it is. That means that we are not about to destroy the earth by more CO2.
A couple of months ago I posted a backward look at the sensitivity. I showed that the world is NOT warming as the IPCC expects.
Notice the two straighter lines are the 2 deg C and 5 deg C for a doubling of CO2. The actual temperature has not risen as the IPCC says and it has risen more closely to what the