Greenhouse gas discussion (tread carefully, be respectful)

Yeah, that is a very important effect … if the poles melt, the consequences are quite dire.

Rain or not.

Since the 80’ … bugger me.

Global heating is accelerating, warns scientist who sounded climate alarm in the 80s

Global heating is accelerating faster than is currently understood and will result in a key temperature threshold being breached as soon as this decade, according to research led by James Hansen, the US scientist who first alerted the world to the greenhouse effect.

The Earth’s climate is more sensitive to human-caused changes than scientists have realized until now, meaning that a “dangerous” burst of heating will be unleashed that will push the world to be 1.5C hotter than it was, on average, in pre-industrial times within the 2020s and 2C hotter by 2050, the paper published on Thursday predicts.

This alarming speed-up of global heating, which would mean the world breaches the internationally agreed 1.5C threshold set out in the Paris climate agreement far sooner than expected, risks a world “less tolerable to humanity, with greater climate extremes”, according to the study led by Hansen, the former Nasa scientist who issued a foundational warning about climate change to the US Congress in the 1980s.

  • What does Hansen say? “We would be damned fools and bad scientists if we didn’t expect an acceleration of global warming,” Hansen said. “We are beginning to suffer the effect of our Faustian bargain. That is why the rate of global warming is accelerating.”

I thought that was Svante Arrhenius, in 1896? Hansen was the guy who told the US congress about it in 1988.

In 1896 the first (?), then to “Congress” in the 80s … after which the “fight started”.

That humankind/Gov’s were warned, THAT is a fact.

Methinks with the destruction of property worldwide due to storms and droughts, fires, there is a time coming when “they” will have to “face the music” from a very irate populace.

The same populace that demanded cheap goods, cheap fuel … voted them in.

While this thread has been woken up again, a video about HOW we know what the temperature was a long time ago (before humans), and why we are so concerned about what is going on now.

Some shots about the basics. Earth is not the hottest it has ever been. We’re here, at the green dot:

That’s not the concern. The concern is what happens when you zoom in on that bit right at the ent. These sorts of swings is supposed to take millennia… but in one hundred years, we did this:


In any case, really interesting stuff, especially how they figure out the composition and temperature of long ago.

Ja boet …

Fossil fuels and frustration at COP28

Author Headshot45x45 By David Gelles

I’m in Dubai at the United Nations climate summit, known as COP28, and the mood is decidedly mixed. Delegates are arriving with high hopes of making progress in the global fight against climate change, but it’s impossible to ignore the fact that the summit is being held inside gleaming new facilities built with oil money.

World leaders will begin speaking tomorrow, and over the next two weeks negotiators from almost every country on the planet will work on redoubling their efforts to combat climate change.

And while hopes are high that countries might find ways to rapidly reduce greenhouse gases and limit the use of coal, oil and gas, the reality is that fossil fuel emissions are still growing. Meanwhile, the destructive effects of climate change are getting worse, with floods, fires, droughts and storms ravaging every corner of the globe.

Frustrations with the U.N. process, and the plodding pace of progress, are running high.

“We’ve had COPs for how many years now?” said Avinash Persaud, a climate adviser for Barbados. “If people had been compelled to act at COP1 or COP2 or COP15, we would have had a different world.”

‘They went too far’

Many are outraged that the United Arab Emirates, one of the world’s biggest oil producers, is hosting this year’s negotiations. The COP28 president, Sultan al-Jaber, is also the head of Adnoc, the state-owned oil company.

An internal document obtained by the Centre for Climate Reporting and the BBC showed that U.A.E.’s COP team was told to promote oil and gas deals on the sidelines.

“There is skepticism of this COP — where it is and who is running it,” said Ani Dasgupta, the president of the World Resources Institute, a research organization.

“They went too far in naming the C.E.O. of one of the largest — and by many measures one of the dirtiest — oil companies on the planet as the president of the U.N. Conference on Climate this year,” former vice president Al Gore told me.

Al Jaber, who is also head of the country’s renewable energy company, dismissed the BBC report as “false, not true, incorrect and not accurate.” He said he is committed to striking an ambitious climate pact by the end of the negotiations, but has also made it clear the U.A.E. will keep producing fossil fuels “as long as the market demands it.”

‘It’s up to us’

Despite the sense of disillusionment hanging over the process, COP28 is expected to draw some 70,000 attendees, and negotiators from around the globe will try to hash out agreements on limiting emissions, increasing renewables and helping developing countries cope with disasters.

Recent developments offer a flicker of hope. Two weeks ago, the U.S. and China, the world’s two biggest polluters, agreed to accelerate efforts to ramp up renewables to displace fossil fuels, although they didn’t provide a timeline or other details. And rich countries may have finally met a pledge to provide $100 billion per year to help developing countries adapt to climate change, albeit four years late, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said this month.

“I haven’t lost faith in multilateralism,” John Kerry, President Biden’s special envoy for climate change, told my colleague Lisa Friedman.

Kerry said it was unreasonable to think that an issue like climate change could be tackled at COP alone. “I don’t think the U.N. or any institution by itself anywhere in the world has the ability to solve the climate crisis,” he said.

Rather, he said, COP could help point the global community in the right direction, but individual countries had to do the hard work of bending the curve on emissions and ramping up renewable energy as fast as possible.

“It’s up to us to produce a result,” Kerry said.

John Miller, an analyst who covers environmental policy for TD Cowen, the investment bank, said the COP process was still “probably the best format to discuss these types of global issues.”

“There is progress at these events, but it’s at a pace that’s likely to disappoint,” he added. “That’s not to say that the whole thing is a farce.”

Continue reading the main story

Ja nee boet …

Over the weekend, the president of Cop28, Sultan Al Jaber, caused uproar when he claimed there was “no science” indicating that a phase-out of fossil fuels was needed to restrict global heating to 1.5C.

The comments were “incredibly concerning” and “verging on climate denial”, scientists said, and they were at odds with the position of the UN secretary general, António Guterres. Al Jaber is also the chief executive of the United Arab Emirates’ state oil company, Adnoc, which many observers see as a serious conflict of interest.

The fallout has continued this morning. Ambassador Majid Al Suwaidi, who is director general of the summit, was put under pressure to respond to Al Jaber’s comments at the Cop28 presidency press conference earlier.

Al Suwaidi did not initially want to answer questions about Al Jaber’s comments, which were revealed by the Guardian. But reporters crowded around him as he left, and he said: “There are those out there who are consistently trying to undermine our presidency from day one. The Cop presidency has been very clear that 1.5C is the North Star. [Al Jaber] has also been very clear about how fossil fuels are on the agenda. What he was talking about was, of course, net zero 2050. It’s very clear in all of the scientific reports that fossil fuels are going to be part of that mix.”

  • What has Al Jaber said since his comments rocked the summit? He held a surprise press conference on Monday morning and insisted that he respects the science. He said “everything has been focused around and centred around the science”, repeating he has been “crystal clear on that”.
  • ‘Absurd’ conflict of interest. In an exclusive interview with the Guardian, former US vice-president Al Gore said an agreement by countries to phase out fossil fuels would be “one of the most significant events in the history of humanity”. He added that it was “absurd” to put a fossil fuel company CEO in charge of Cop28.

Climate check: 2023 smashes record for world’s hottest year by huge margin

2023 “smashed” the record for the hottest year by a huge margin, providing “dramatic testimony” of how much warmer and more dangerous today’s climate is from the cooler one in which human civilisation developed. The planet was 1.48C hotter in 2023 compared with the period before the mass burning of fossil fuels ignited the climate crisis. The figure is very close to the 1.5C temperature target set by countries in Paris in 2015, although the global temperature would need to be consistently above 1.5C for the target to be considered broken. Scientists at the EU’s Copernicus Climate Change Service (CCCS) said it was likely the 1.5C mark would be passed for the first time in the next 12 months.

“Astounding” ocean temperatures in 2023 supercharged “freak” weather around the world as the climate crisis continued to intensify, new data has revealed.

The oceans absorb 90% of the heat trapped by the carbon emissions from the burning of fossil fuels, making it the clearest indicator of global heating. Record levels of heat were taken up by the oceans in 2023, scientists said, and the data showed that for the past decade the oceans have been hotter every year than the year before.

The heat also led to record levels of stratification in the oceans, where warm water ponding on the surface reduces the mixing with deeper waters. This cuts the amount of oxygen in the oceans, threatening marine life, and also reduces the amount of carbon dioxide and heat the seas can take up in the future.

Reliable ocean temperature measurements stretch back to 1940, but it is likely the oceans are now at their hottest for 1,000 years and heating faster than at any time in the past 2,000 years.

  • What are experts saying? “The ocean is the key to telling us what’s happening to the world and the data is painting a compelling picture of warming year after year after year,” said Prof John Abraham, of the University of St Thomas in Minnesota, part of the team that produced the new data.


If the worlds Gov’s would just listen … people would just take 2 seconds and think …

Or do we just have to handle this more often … USA would probably act first at the rate the USA is being whacked.

Ja nee ok …

Let’s see what happens this year:

Here is another very informative video, explaining exactly HOW we know, and also affirming THAT we know.

1 Like

This Hossenfelder lady is quite good with this stuff!

Here she is being fact-checked by a Nuclear physicist, so it is a two for one video, you get Sabine’s research on the topic, plus someone checking her facts.

Interesting info from this video.

  1. Nuclear power is as clean as wind power, and possibly slightly cleaner than solar power when you consider the whole cycle (including production and decommissioning).
  2. Nuclear material isn’t quite as plentiful as I thought! The supply or Uranium 235, used for light water reactors, is quite limited. A lot of tech we’d need to make it work relies on future breakthroughs in the use of U238 (breeder reactors) and Thorium reactors.
  3. The one that most people are scared of, the waste, is actually the least of the problems.
  4. Renewable energy doesn’t have a zero head count. People shock themselves to death, fall from wind turbine towers, a car crashed into a truck transporting a turbine blade, and a big dam in China significantly lifted the head count of hydro when a wall burst! Interesting how these things are counted.

Anyway… have fun kids!

There’s one bit there that I didn’t get, but would like to.

She says that C02 is very good at absorbing IR and so has a cooling effect. OK, fine, but then why is it getting warmer now that there’s more of it? All the heat from the stored IR that otherwise would have hit the planet?

Not denying, but if I have this chat around a braai one day I want really know my oats.

I didn’t get all of it either. Maybe @justinschoeman is the guy to ask?

OK. This is a fairly easy one.

  1. What is the spectrum of sunlight striking the atmosphere?
  2. What is the absorption spectrum of CO2?

This image answers both questions. The yellow line is what hits the atmosphere, the blue line is what hits the ground. The difference is what is absorbed along the way.

There is indeed a tiny amount of absorption at longer wavelengths (IR) attributed to CO2.

But what happens to the rest of the energy? Some is reflected back out to space (some more being absorbed on the way out). Most of the rest is absorbed by plants/water/ground/buildings/roads/etc, which heat up and re-radiate IR.

So, the CO2 absorbs a tiny amount of inbound IR and a large amount of outbound IR.

But what happens to that energy that is absorbed? If you keep pumping energy into something, it will just keep getting hotter and hotter, unless energy is also removed.

Heat energy can be removed in 3 ways - conduction, convection and radiation. Conduction and radiation are roughly isotropic - heat is lost equally in all directions. Convection is directional and removes heat upwards. But on the whole, the measured heat re-radiation is approximately equal - about half of the absorbed energy goes up into space, and half goes down towards Earth.


  1. Absorbing inbound IR is minimal, and some of that is re-radiated inwards anyway.
  2. Absorbed outbound IR is also abosrbed, and half of that is also re-radiated inwards.

There is a tiny cooling effect and a massive heating effect.


Thank you. So the CO2 acts as a heat trap? Thus the atmosphere heats up? OK, that makes sense, but doesn’t sound like what Hossenfelder describes.