Sunday , September 27 2020
Home / Comment / Fun facts about Climate Change

Fun facts about Climate Change

Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images

Over the years, I’ve learnt some interesting facts about the atmosphere and climate change…

Cloud cover

  1. Water vapour is evaporated from the seas , which covers 70% of the global surface area.
  2. The warmer air is, the more water vapour it can hold. [1,2]
  3. The more water vapour there is in the atmosphere, the more cloud cover exists.
  4. Cloud cover blocks sunlight, reducing global warming.

Conclusion 1: atmospheric temperature is naturally regulated by water vapour.

Plant growth

  1. Increased atmospheric water vapour increases precipitation (rainfall).
  2. Increased rainfall increases plant growth.
  3. Increased carbon dioxide concentration increases plant growth. [3]
  4. Increased atmospheric temperature ALSO increases plant growth.

Conclusion 2: “global warming” creates a greener planet. This is a good thing.

Arctic sea ice

  1. Arctic ice is floating sea ice
  2. Floating ice displaces the same volume as melted ice. [4]

Conclusion 3: melted Arctic ice will not contribute to rising sea levels.

Inland glacial ice

  1. The worst case scenario projections of global warming/climate change estimate that the atmospheric temperature will increase by 5C over the next 100 years. Most estimates indicate a 2C rise over the next 100 years. [5]
  2. Average coastal temperature of Antarctica is -10C. The majority of Antarctic ice is much further inland, where temperatures are much much colder (in excess of -50C). [6]
  3. Greenland’s ice sheet has an average temperature of -12C in summer. [7]

Conclusion 4: “Climate Change” will not melt either Greenland or Antarctic land ice.

Sea levels

  1. Increased atmospheric water vapour increases precipitation.
  2. Increased precipitation increases polar ice.
  3. Vast majority of precipitation water is evaporated sea water.

Conclusion 5: as “global warming” increases polar ice, it may even lead to sea levels falling.

Greenhouse effect of CO2

  1. The greenhouse effect of CO2 is logarithmic [8]. This means that every doubling of CO2 concentration will only increase the greenhouse effect by 1.5%.
  2. In the last 150 years, global CO2 concentration has risen by about 30%.
  3. In the last 150 years, average global atmospheric temperature has risen by 1C.
  4. Assuming a worst case scenario, that all the temperature rise caused by human CO2 emissions: 30% increase in CO2 concentration corresponds to 1C rise. This means that a temperature rise of 3C would require increasing CO2 concentration by 120% – that’s an increase of 336ppm.
  5. We have only increased atmospheric CO2 by 100ppm since the dawn of the industrial revolution.

Conclusion 6: We are nowhere near to increasing the atmospheric temperature by 3C.

The biggest greenhouse gases

  1. Water vapour is by far the most significant greenhouse gas, estimated at 60% of overall greenhouse effect. [9]
  2. There is no way to control water in the atmosphere.
  3. CO2 contributes 26% to the overall greenhouse effect.
  4. Human activity contributes only about 4% of global CO2 emissions (29 gigatons per year compared to 750 gigatons of natural CO2 emissions). [10]

Conclusion 7: Human activity has very little effect on global warming.

So what do you think? Does this make you feel less alarmed about climate change? Feedback and corrections welcome.

References

[1] A closer look at evaporation and condensation

[2] Saturated Vapor Pressure, Density for Water

[3] Carbon Dioxide Fertilization Greening Earth

[4] Why does ice melting not change the water level in a container?

[5] 2014 Energy and Climate Outlook

[6] Climate of Antarctica

[7] Climate – Greenland

[8] The Logarithmic Effect of Carbon Dioxide

[9] Climate Data Information – Gases

[10] How do human CO2 emissions compare to natural CO2 emissions?

This post was originally published by the author on his personal blog: https://hoongwai1984.wordpress.com/2020/01/30/fun-facts-about-climate-change/

About Hoong-Wai

Profile photo of Hoong-Wai
Software analyst. Engineering graduate. A social progressive at heart, and a former atheist. Believes in protecting life and liberty. Recently developed a strong interest in economics despite having given up the subject many moons ago. UKIP parliamentary candidate for 2017. Emigrated from Malaysia to the UK in 1998.

Check Also

A Clarity Act

There is I think only one place in the world which in recent times offered …

9 comments

  1. Global warming is happening. It is relatively small at present, compared with how much the Earth can warm or cool. Carbon dioxide must certainly contribute to the warming that has happened and, as you point out, there are other greenhouse gases and warming effects.

    The real issue is “Climate Sensitivity” to CO2 and greenhouse gases in general. There is an excellent article on this subject at https://www.carbonbrief.org/explainer-how-scientists-estimate-climate-sensitivity . Your article argues that the lower estimates of climate sensitivity are correct.

    The lower estimates for climate sensitivity are based on actual data to date. They suggest that a doubling of CO2 levels from pre-industrial levels will equilibrate at 2 degrees C temperature rise. 1.5 to 2 degrees is a substantial rise, sufficient to change agricultural practice in much of the world, destabilise states in the Middle East, Asia and North Africa and generally cause trouble but it is not Armageddon. As we approach 1.5 degrees C rise we can already see the beginnings of these effects.

    This is where we come to the consideration of risk. The range of predictions for climate sensitivity, based on data such as ice cores, speculations about tipping points etc. is 1.5 to 4.5 degrees C for a doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere. A global temperature rise of 4 degrees C is indeed Armageddon. Large parts of the world will become uninhabitable. The risk can be mitigated by reducing CO2 output.

    The problem is simple: are we prepared to gamble?

    My gripe is with the ecological footprint of humanity. We could mitigate the risk of climate apocalypese AND save the remaining wildlife on the planet if we simply stopped breeding like rabbits.

    • “Your article argues that the lower estimates of climate sensitivity are correct.”
      That is incorrect. The article makes no mention of climate sensitivity estimates.

      “1.5 to 2 degrees is a substantial rise, sufficient to change agricultural practice in much of the world, destabilise states in the Middle East, Asia and North Africa and generally cause trouble”
      Perhaps agricultural practice might change, but the facts indicate that agricultural output will increase.

      There is no rational reason that states would be destabilised by 2C change.

      The question isn’t “are we prepared to gamble”.

      The question is: If we do something, are we sure the benefits will outweigh the harms?

      Remembering that the benefit is just attempting to mitigate climate change, whilst the harms of renewable energy are to damage the environment whilst increasing poverty.

      You argue that we should stop breeding (like rabbits). I fundamentally disagree with such an anti-humanit stance.

      • But the gamble is a roulette wheel where some of the outcomes may involve the destruction of large parts of the planet, the putative outcomes are far worse than “just attempting to mitigate climate change”. I hope you are right and 2 degrees C is the maximum effect of doubling CO2 but there is a serious possibility of worse outcomes. Even the lowest estimates of the effect of doubling CO2 give a possible range of effects from 1.2 degrees to 3.8 degrees. Can we really spin the roulette wheel when some of the possible outcomes are so dire?

        Is it really anti-human to ask people to limit their family size? It is anti-catholic and possibly anti-Islam but not anti-methodist or anti-protestant and if we just ask humans to do it without reference to creeds most will agree. It just needs the media to explain why two children are so much better than three for the family and nature.

        • John,
          First of all, I haven’t stated that 2 degrees C is the maximum effect of doubling CO2.

          The facts listed in my article give me reason to believe that the outcomes will not be anywhere near as dire as they are scaring us to believe.

          Furthermore, the solutions recommended by the green lobby all lead to worsening human life. Renewable energy is very expensive and unreliable, which hits the poor the hardest. All forms of renewable energy also requires vast amounts of land (or sea), which directly damages the environment. This is compared to CO2 emissions, which actually increases plant growth!

          The current paradigm will harm both humanity and the environment.

          • Two degrees is probably the lowest estimate of mean climate sensitivity to doubling CO2 so I assumed you were using that figure.

            Certainly 2 degrees will have an effect (Terrestrial temperatures rise much more than sea and hence global average temperatures). How negative this effect would be varies from one report to another. That said, I know of no source that would say that a 4 degree rise in global average temperature is harmless (remember that land temperatures might rise by double this average), most are apocalyptic when it comes to a 4 degree rise – see https://phys.org/news/2018-08-trillion-lost-temperatures-degrees.html which estimate $23 trillion dollars reduction in global GDP if the world heats by 4 degrees.

            Which brings us back to the gamble. If I tossed a coin and said I will pay you £1000 if it lands on heads you might eagerly agree. If you were wise you would ask what was the down side of tails. If I produced a gun and said “its only a shot in the spine” you would walk away from the bet. The stakes would be too high.

            I am fairly sanguine about climate change. I veer towards the lower estimates of climate sensitivity but as a scientist and businessman I find the stakes too high in the game of climate change. I support playing safe.

    • Totally agree with your comments regarding amount of people on this earth. Our overall current human footprint is considerably too large. Really not sure how this will end. It is simply an unfortunate fact.
      Most pollution is not really coming from the United States but it’s coming from heavily populated areas of Southeast Asia and Asia itself. Also one of my greatest concern is the acidification of the ocean. That can collapse oceanic food chains.

    • Totally agree with your comments regarding amount of people on this earth. Our overall current human footprint is considerably too large. Really not sure how this will end. It is simply an unfortunate fact.
      Most pollution is not really coming from the United States but it’s coming from heavily populated areas of Southeast Asia and Asia itself. They also are just trying to survive. Also one of my greatest concern is the acidification of the ocean. That can collapse oceanic food chains.

  2. let us not forget that mother earth is moving towards the sun in the suns gravitational pulll there is nothing humanity can do about that so dont even think about it !!…..let us all realise that it is the bilderbergers and the multi billionaires of this world that control ALL governments and have funded the latest technologies and thus want their payback ……………(..its how the world has been allowed to go ….rightly or wrongly ) To get their message across the likes of george soros enlisted the help of a mentally challeged swedish girl in order to frighten the worlds vulnerable infant schoolchildren because they are naive and gullible ………………….NOW I FOR ONE DEEM THAT TO BE CHILD ABUSE !!!!

Leave a Reply to Bruce Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to toolbar