Explaining Why The Greenhouse Effect Doesn’t Exist

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I think I am beating a dead horse here, but it’s nice to try and summarize in a way that the lay-person can understand what the meaning of landmark scientific papers is. Like Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, the paper by Gerlich and Tscheuschner that clearly and powerfully demonstrates that the Greenhouse Effect doesn’t exist is worth summarizing again and again.

There has, to date, been no worthy rebuttal to the paper. I mention Smith’s attempt, riddled with mathematical errors and inconsistencies, not because it is worthy but because it is the only attempt I have heard of.

After recently reviewing the paper, and taking enough time to digest the finer points within it, let me try yet another attempt at summarizing it.

The summary is basically that the Greenhouse Effect, if it existed, would imply a violation of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics or that there is a heat pump forcing heat to transfer from the atmosphere to the earth. In plainer words, the Greenhouse Effect is a perpetual machine. No one seems to notice this because all the scientific literature the authors have reviewed simply assume that the Effect exists. This was quite a chore, because there doesn’t even seem to be much agreement on what, precisely, the Greenhouse Effect is.

In the very beginning of the paper, the authors state simply and clearly what a doubling of the CO2 in the atmosphere would do based on well-understood physics and actual measurements of the things involved. They show, quite clearly, that the effect is nothing. Notice that no one dares challenge the authors on their claims in this section. The reason why is because their arguments are bulletproof.

With that out of the way, the authors try to figure out what people mean by the Greenhouse Effect. Since there are contradictory claims about what the Greenhouse Effect is, including the fact that the Greenhouse Effect has nothing at all to do with greenhouses (as scientists who claim the Greenhouse Effect exists will readily admit to), this is not an easy thing to do.

See, the word “Effect” is a specific term, just like “Theory” and “Law”. An “Effect” has three things:

  1. It is not obvious upon first glance. That is, it is surprising when it is first noticed.
  2. It is reproducible, which means you see it everywhere it might occur.
  3. It is measurable, meaning you can put numbers of how strong the effect is.
  4. It has a theoretical explanation.

Right off the bat, it’s clear that the Greenhouse Effect is not an Effect at all. In fact, the authors note that the Greenhouse Effect isn’t mentioned in any physics literature at all, except as a reference to climate science. Even then, no one dared explain the Effect with any theoretically sound explanation. This is surprising: one of the characteristics of an effect is that it has a solid theoretical explanation, and yet no one dared say what it was.

When the Greenhouse Effect has been tested by measurements, Alfred Schack showed in 1972 that it is not measurable at all. Meaning, it is an effect that has not effect at all.

The authors then go on to explain how real greenhouses work, and showing with some simple experiments how much warming you might achieve by simply interfering with normal convection currents—wind, or air moving up and down and side to side. In fact, Wood did some experiments in 1909 that proved that radiation had nothing to do with how greenhouses worked. Replacing the glass in a greenhouse with sheets of clear salt did not change how heat escaped from the warmer greenhouse.

The next section is where the authors tackle the many different and conflicting versions of the Greenhouse Effect. They carefully document 14 different Greenhouse Effects and disprove all of them using basic thermodynamics and solid theory. If someone would want to show the Greenhouse Effect to exist, they would need to do one of two things:

  1. Show that the Greenhouse Effect is not accurately reflected in any of the 14 that were documented.
  2. Show that the authors were incorrect in reasoning about any one of the 14 that were documented.

The fact that no one has attempted this shows how thorough the authors of the paper were.

Note that some of the words people use to describe the Greenhouse Effect, such as radiative forcing, radiative equilibrium, etc., are not based on physics. They are simply fabrications with nothing other than wishful thinking. If you believe these terms mean something meaningful, I kindly request you read the paper to see why they are not.

Finally, the authors drive many nails into the coffin of climate science. They do so by showing that the models climate scientists are using cannot even begin to predict the future, because the math required to solve all the necessary equations does not exist and probably never will. They show that climate simulations have never explained why they do not need to solve these complicated equations.

The authors conclude with a beautifully written summary of all the problem facing climate theories in relation to well-understood and documented physical phenomena.

In conclusion, you are witnessing a dramatic shift in climate science. With this paper standing, Climate Science cannot be considered scientific, or at least, congruent with physics. Climate Scientists peddle the same garbage that people who claim to have built perpetual machines have peddled since the beginning of time. We would be wise to ignore them, and wiser still to explain to the ignorant why they should be ignored.

 

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15 Responses to “Explaining Why The Greenhouse Effect Doesn’t Exist”

  1. tensor Says:

    … a heat pump forcing heat to transfer from the atmosphere to the earth. In plainer words, the Greenhouse Effect is a perpetual [motion] machine.

    Only because the authors completely ignore the heat flowing from the earth to the atmosphere. The surface of the earth is warmer than the upper atmosphere, so why should heat not transfer from the warmer earth to the colder upper atmosphere? Does heat not normally flow from hot to cold?

    No one seems to notice this because all the scientific literature the authors have reviewed simply assume that the Effect exists.

    Yes, we assume heat will flow from hot to cold. Why is this assumption wrong?

    In the very beginning of the paper, the authors state simply and clearly what a doubling of the CO2 in the atmosphere would do…

    They describe what a doubling of the CO2 would do to the conductive properties of the earth’s atmosphere. They say nothing about what would happen to the radiative properties of the earth’s atmosphere. Again, do you understand the difference between conductive heat transfer and radiative heat transfer? Because your statements here keep confusing them.

    With that out of the way, the authors try to figure out what people mean by the Greenhouse Effect.

    They, and you, need to read Tyndall’s work on this point.

  2. demo kid Says:

    The authors then go on to explain how real greenhouses work, and showing with some simple experiments how much warming you might achieve by simply interfering with normal convection currents—wind, or air moving up and down and side to side. In fact, Wood did some experiments in 1909 that proved that radiation had nothing to do with how greenhouses worked. Replacing the glass in a greenhouse with sheets of clear salt did not change how heat escaped from the warmer greenhouse.

    Why precisely are you spending so much time talking about real greenhouses? If you’re intention is to point out that the “greenhouse” in the “greenhouse effect” is a misnomer, then brilliant! You’ve won.

    However, NO ONE has EVER stated that the same effects present in the greenhouse are present in the trapping of heat in the atmosphere. They are two completely different types of systems, and no scientist would try to compare them in anything more than a metaphorical way. Trying to use this as proof that the greenhouse effect doesn’t exist actually shows that you don’t really know what you’re talking about.

    • Jonathan Gardner Says:

      And you showed you only read part of the post.

      It’s important to cut off all explanations of the Greenhouse Effect, and the authors go to extraordinary lengths to conclusively do so.

      By the way, which one of the 14 greenhouse effects listed in the paper do you think is the correct one?

  3. tensor Says:

    By the way, which one of the 14 greenhouse effects listed in the paper do you think is the correct one?

    The paper does not contain a valid description of the Greenhouse Effect, so therefore your question has no answer. One of the distinguishing traits of a good scientist is knowing how to ask relevant questions, ones with useful answers. Your failure to do that here shows nicely your inability to understand science.

    I think I am beating a dead horse here, but it’s nice to try and summarize in a way that the lay-person can understand what the meaning of landmark scientific papers is.

    Repeated referring to a scientific paper that I (and others) have already (per your prior request) invalidated is indeed a total waste of everyone’s time, and the dead-animal cliche does indeed fit it well. (Good to see you finally making an accurate description of a process — albeit not of a thermodynamic process.)

    • Jonathan Gardner Says:

      Please, by all means, enlighten me. What is your definition of the Greenhouse Effect? Please use precise, scientific terms that are based on known physical processes. Or better yet, point me to the canonical description of the Greenhouse Effect.

  4. tensor Says:

    The web site of the American Institute of Physics has this explanation:

    Visible sunlight penetrates easily through the air and warms the Earth’s surface. When the surface emits invisible infrared heat radiation, this radiation too easily penetrates the main gases of the air. But as Tyndall found, even a trace of CO2 or water vapor, no more than it took to fill a bottle in his laboratory, is almost opaque to heat radiation. Thus a good part of the radiation that rises from the surface is absorbed by these gases in the middle levels of the atmosphere. Its energy transfers into the air itself rather than escaping directly into space. Not only is the air thus warmed, but also some of the energy trapped there is radiated back to the surface, warming it further.

    Oh, an as far as any possible claim to differences between heat, energy, and radiation, the article I cited in another thread, from Mechanical Engineering magazine, contained the following sentence:

    And the relentless Texas sun irradiates that area with an average of nearly 100 megawatt-hours of energy a day.

    I can probably find other articles, in engineering journals, which might make the thermal radiation = heat = energy on a 1:1:1 basis idea easier for you, but can you kindly spare me the trouble? Thanks!

    • Jonathan Gardner Says:

      The American Institute of Physics is wrong, sadly, sadly wrong.

      See, the measured heat conductivity of CO2 exists, and is quite accurate. If there was such a blanketing effect, then we would see that CO2 has a much lower heat conductivity than other gases, like N2 and O2.

      It is up to you, and the American Institute of Physics, to explain why the measured heat conductivity does not demonstrate the Greenhouse Effect. Surely, if it were there, we would see it in our measurements. But we do not! Why?

      I encourage you to find the exact formulate that details W/m2 to a change in temperature. I’ll let you uncover it, because I am looking at it right now and it is not 1-1 exchange to heat. (Hint: You can read the paper I cited numerous times to see what it is for yourself.)

      • demo kid Says:

        It is up to you, and the American Institute of Physics, to explain why the measured heat conductivity does not demonstrate the Greenhouse Effect.

        No, now this is just getting absurd. Where precisely did tensor talk about heat conductivity? In every single discussion of CO2 that we have had, there has been a discussion of the changes in absorption, not in conduction.

        Likewise, with the paper that you have waved around as “proof”, the authors take a number of inaccurate descriptions of the effect, and attempt to prove that the effect is not real simply because these descriptions are wrong. But yet again, no rational climate scientist compares the greenhouse effect to an actual greenhouse with glass. It’s simply not correct.

        Virtually the only thing that you can prove here is that lay explanations of scientific phenomena can be pretty bad. No surprise there. But what you’re doing is not really “disproving” anything. It’s akin to saying adamantly that planes can’t fly because the commonly believed process for generating lift (pressure differences between the top and bottom of the wing) is wrong.

      • Jonathan Gardner Says:

        Are you saying that radiation absorption and heat conduction are unrelated? After all, if you want CO2 to heat the earth, you have to reduce the heat conduction of the atmosphere, or in other words, increase its insulation. You have to show that radiation absorption changes the heat conduction of the gas from what it would otherwise be. As you can see in the paper, the differences between CO2 and other gasses do not suggest CO2 has some magical insulative property. Also, the differences are so small that doubling the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere will not change the heat properties of the atmosphere enough that it can be detected.

        The authors of the paper try to identify the canonical definition of the Greenhouse Effect. Finding none, they tackle various contradictory claims to the effect in published media. So of course they have to tackle definitions of the Greenhouse Effect that do not match what you claim it is.

        By the way, what is your canonical definition of the Greenhouse Effect? In which publication is it found? Which one of the 14 the authors discredit does it most closely match with?

        Your analogy to airplanes is irrelevant. After all, if you want to show that planes can fly, all you have to do is demonstrate a mechanism to generate a force downwards great enough to overcome the force of gravity. Since lift does produce such a force, and it can be easily measured, this is based on sound physical principles.

        In reality, I am the one with the measuring stick, measuring the property of CO2, and I have found that it does not demonstrate anything close to what you claim the Greenhouse Effect to be. It’s up to you to show why I did the wrong measurement or where my reasoning is wrong. So far, you all have done a terrible job explaining why the heat conductivity of CO2 is irrelevant to temperature. (Good luck with that, by the way!)

  5. tensor Says:

    If there was such a blanketing effect, then we would see that CO2 has a much lower heat conductivity than other gases, like N2 and O2.

    What is your basis for the claim of a relationship between the conductive and radiative properties of carbon dioxide gas?

    It is up to you, and the American Institute of Physics, to explain why the measured heat conductivity does not demonstrate the Greenhouse Effect.

    Actually, it’s up to you to explain why you cannot understand the difference between radiative heat transfer and conductive heat transfer, because one of them greatly affects the earth’s climate, and one does not have nearly so large an effect.

    I encourage you to find the exact formulate that details W/m2 to a change in temperature. I’ll let you uncover it, because I am looking at it right now and it is not 1-1 exchange to heat.

    I never claimed a 1:1 ratio between radiation and temperature, especially not in an environment, like the atmosphere, where convection is also a large factor. I was responding to your explicit claim that the ratio of heat to radiation was not one to one:

    What I am denying is that there is a 1 to 1 relationship of heat to radiation, or vice versa. The two are not the same thing.

    You claim that your authority to make pronouncements on this topic comes from your engineering background. Could you please address the engineering journal’s equation of heat, radiation, and energy? (Note: nothing about temperature in the quote!) If not, could you please now concede that heat, radiation, and energy are the same? Thanks again!

    • Jonathan Gardner Says:

      I don’t need to discuss the radiative properties of CO2. It is useless information—a red herring. What is only important is the heat conductivity of CO2, that is all. If the Greenhouse Effect did exist, then the heat conductivity of CO2 would be significantly different than N2 and O2.

      What does the heat transfer method have to do with anything? If you know the heat conductivity of an interface, then that’s all you need to know. The mechanism of heat transfer, as I have discussed countless times now, is a useless detail that does nothing to help us understand how temperatures will change.

      Now that you agree with me that radiation is not heat transfer, and they do not relate 1-1, will you agree with me that observing the radiative heat transfer in isolation is pointless when determining heat transfer? After all, there is not a vacuum between the earth and the atmosphere, and there are other heat transfer methods occurring that may be occurring.

      I don’t have an engineering background; my background is in physics.

      Your definition of “heat” is lacking. Heat is the exchange of energy between two bodies as a result of a difference in temperature. Whenever I talk about “heat”, temperature is implied.

      Heat, radiation, and energy are not and will never be the same thing. You cannot substitute one for the other.

      • demo kid Says:

        I don’t need to discuss the radiative properties of CO2. It is useless information—a red herring.

        Absolutely, positively wrong. Every reasonable explanation of the greenhouse effect discusses the absorption / radiative properties of CO2. If you think that it is a red herring, it is on you to say why, instead of dismissing it and assuming that all heat transfer in the atmosphere is through conduction and convection.

      • Jonathan Gardner Says:

        I’ll explain why it’s a red herring (once again). When determining how temperatures change, you look at the heat flow. If you measure the heat flow from the ground to the air, you see that CO2 and other gasses are roughly similar. Certainly, there are tiny differences between them, but nothing like what the Greenhouse Effect claims to exist. Thus, the radiation absorption / whatever is useless in determining how CO2 and other gasses behave thermodynamically.

  6. tensor Says:

    I don’t have an engineering background…

    Thank you; you have now explicitly satisfied my request to disassociate your claims about science from my profession, so my primary purpose in commenting here is complete.

    My secondary purpose was to demonstrate just how far deniers of climate change must go to maintain their fictional beliefs, and this you have also done — and you went much, much further than even I had hoped. It’s very hard to imagine anyone reading your claims, e.g. “heat is not reflected”, and giving you any credit for understanding science. After all, even a child can feel the heat on her face, and make the connection to the image of the sun, reflected in the glass window of a skyscraper. The only people who could possibly read your nonsense and believe it are your fellow deniers, and, as you have so ably shown, y’all are not amenable to facts, reason, logic, or any other form of intelligible discourse.

    For one example, you have simply refused to address the report in Mechanical Engineering magazine, which described how engineers kept heat out of their building by reflecting solar radiation away from it. Said radiation was clearly described in units of energy, as you acknowledged, thus completing the equation of heat, radiation, and energy. You apparently believe that just ignoring this refutation of your claim will somehow work in your favor, but all you have done is silently concede the point. Smearing scientists won’t help you here, because the engineers clearly saved money by their heat-reflecting design, and such a hard fiscal reality simply crushes any attempt at denial you might have made.

    For another example, the discredited paper you keep citing as “proof” was, in the very first line of the abstract, described as a critique of Tyndall’s work on radiative properties of atmospheric gasses. By your own repeated admission, you completely lack any real knowledge of his work, thus implicitly admitting you have no basis for praising their paper. Your claim it has value is merely propaganda, not science.

    Your analogy to airplanes is irrelevant. After all, if you want to show that planes can fly, all you have to do is demonstrate a mechanism to generate a force downwards great enough to overcome the force of gravity. Since lift does produce such a force, and it can be easily measured, this is based on sound physical principles.

    Actually, his analogy is highly relevant. You have already claimed that we cannot understand aerodynamics, but your lack of knowledge prevented you from recognizing this:

    … because the math required to solve all the necessary equations does not exist…

    Although you didn’t refer to the equations by their proper name, you were referring to the Navier-Stokes equations, which describe all continuous fluid flow, including the flow of air over a wing, or through a gas turbine. You were therefore claiming that we cannot possibly build gas turbines, nor use them to power flying-machines. Once again, actual engineering success reveals your failed claims to understand physics.

    Now that you agree with me that radiation is not heat transfer,

    I’m in no way responsible for your delusions, but I know that asking you to retract even a blatantly false claim is a waste of time. Again, please show how the article I cited was wrong.

    • Jonathan Gardner Says:

      I’m allowing the previous post not because it is relevant, but because it demonstrates the great lengths people have to go through to discredit a climate “denialist” like myself.

      My degree is in Physics; the fact I am not an engineer is irrelevant therefore.

      The rest of the quotes are taken out of context or completely misunderstood. You’ll have to go back and find the source of the quotes and put together the full conversation to understand what it was we were discussing.

      Every time I’ve tried to carefully debate tensor, he has not produced the necessary material to debate. Instead, it’s been one switch of direction after another.

      I have laid a very simple bar to pass: simply show me why the measured thermodynamic properties of CO2 do not demonstrate the Greenhouse Effect, or do not apply to the thermodynamic problem of solving the temperature of the earth given a change in the composition of the atmosphere. Nowhere has he attempted to pass this bar; instead, it’s misdirection after misdirection.

      I’m still open to anyone, anywhere demonstrating to me why the thermodynamic properties of CO2 are irrelevant, but the radiative properties of CO2 are. No one can say why they ignore the past few centuries of work in thermodynamics, and instead, embrace a model where only radiation is observed and measured.

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