William M. Briggs

Statistician to the Stars!

Heartland conference: day 1

For the next three days, I’ll be reporting on the Heartland Conference on Climate Change.

Day started late with a cash bar at the at the Marquis hotel. I live in New York City, where the conference is, so I was not shocked when the bartender asked me for ten bucks for a Budweiser. I could have paid eleven and gotten a Amstel Light.

Dinner followed; surprisingly not terrible and not chicken. Joe Bast, who heads Heartland, gave the expected opening speech, the gist of which was that legitimate skeptics (as to completely harmful global warming) existed. Comedian followed and \.

Patrick Michaels gave one of his speeches, which was a bit unfocused. He correctly emphasized that, yes, warming had indeed taken place and that humans had at least something to do with it. He pointed out, rightly, that the La Nina and low solar activity have recently combined to produce some lower temperatures, but that skeptics should not use these facts to argue global warming didn’t exist. But then showed some slides of the return of sea ice at the poles to show that…what? That warming was gone?

Well, if temperatures are only temporarily going down, then ice will only temporarily reappear.

Michaels did a good job documenting some of the irrational frenzy from some who actually seem to wish ardently that global warming be devastating. He used “warming island” as an example (Google that).

Met some people and collected some tracts. I didn’t need to go and explore the lights of Broadway, so I went to bed.

Stay tuned.

2 Comments

  1. Briggs:
    Budweiser? The Super Bowl ads were pretty funny, but $10 Budweiser!!! If I were you I would try the Grolsch before Miller does to it what they did to Lowenbrau those many moons ago.

    How many strong AGW proponents are attending? Any household names?

  2. Harold Pierce Jr

    March 4, 2008 at 8:13 am

    RE: Wrong Concentation of Carbon Dioxide Used GCM’s!

    Hello Mr Briggs!

    Below is a comment that I posted in the JunkScience Forum Blog on Feb 24. I highly recommed that you print a ton of copies and give them to the conference presenters, in particular to Dr. Vincent Gray, Dr. Bob Carter, Dr. John Christy, Dr. Roy Spencer, Dr. Roger Pielke Sr., et al. Pass’em out hot cakes! I’m “virtually certain” about this, but have Dr. Vincent Gray check it since is chemist.

    -=-Harold D. Pierce Jr, B.Sc(Hon)., Ph.D.

    The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere as determined by analysis of ambient air at Mauna Loa are reported for ?Standard Dry Air? which is air at 273.16 K and 1 atm pressure and is comprised of nitrogen, oxygen and the inert gases. These are the reference conditions always used for reporting the composition of the atmosphere based on analysis of ambient air at a particular site by various methods. The value is only valid for Mauna Loa and bear no relationship to the concentration of CO2 in ?Real Air? at any other site.
    ?Real Air? is term for ambient air at the intake ports of air seperation plants and is used in HVAC industry.

    In general, the composition and physical properties of real air are quite site specfic, variable and depend primarily on elevation and fluctuating temperature, pressure, and absolute humidity and to a lessor extent on the seasons and weather, site surface and geophysical features (e.g., ocean, mountains, desert, forests, cropland, urbanization, etc) and on biological and human activities. Clouds and the temprature of water bodies will also effect the concentration of CO2 in the air above them.

    For example, if standard dry air is heated to 30 deg C the mole number declines by about 10% but the relative ratio of the gases in the real air will remain about the same. This is origin of the phase ?well-mixed gases in the troposphere?

    Standard air has 388 ml of pure CO2. At 30 deg C this value drops to 350 ml. If the air were to become saturated with water vapor (ca, 4% by volume), the amount of CO2 declines to about 336 ml.

    Air pressure declines about 1 psi per 2000 ft increase in elevation. This would lower the density of the air and thus absolute amount of the gases per unit volume. However, air temperature drops about 6 deg C per 2000 ft increse in elevation. This would increase the density of air. Thus absolute amount of the gases per unit volume of air becomes a complex fuction of these variables.

    Since clouds have a high surface area and CO2 is quite soluble in water, the amount of CO2 in the air will be altered and depend the cloud density, i.e, the amount of water per cubic meter. If the clouds move into warmer air and dissipate, the CO2 will be released to air. If the clouds move into cooler air and rain is formed, the CO2 will be transported to the surface and its fate will depend on that surface. Over the oceans the CO2 will mix in the water quickly. Over the land, however, the nature of the surface will effect whether the CO2 is retained in the water (e.g., porous soil) or released back to the air (e.g., hot concrete or rocks or plant leaves, etc).

    Over water the amount of CO2 in the air will be influnced by the temperature of the upper layers. The solubility of CO2 decline rapidly with increasing water temperature and can be about 60% lower in water at 30 deg C than water at 0 deg C. As warm tropical water moves to the poles, it?s temperature slowly drops and by the time it reaches the polar region the water temperaure can be about 0 deg C, and can hold about 2.5 times as much CO2 as the warm tropical warter. How much CO2 is absorb will depend air presssure, wind, wave action, salinity and biological activity, etc.

    What all of the above boils down to is this: There is no uniform spatial and temporal distribution of CO2 in real or ambient air as expessed in absolute amount per unit volume of air. Climate models would probably give better results if the absolute amount of CO2 per unit volume is used (e.g., milligrams or millimoles/cubic meter) and some method for estimating the above mentioned spatial and temporal distribution(s) of CO2.

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