Water vapor and CO2 – why nearly all climate models fail.

The candidate Beto O’Rourke

on Climate change is but a dork.

He does not understand

that the world will not end.

Fake News! – Only New Green Deal pork!

Quote from Beto O’Rourke:

“The scientists are unanimous on this. We have no more than 12 years to take incredibly bold action on this crisis, can we make it? I don’t know. It’s up to every one of us. Do you want to make it?”

I beg to differ.

We live in only one world. As a concerned citizen I realize we have immense environmental challenges before us, with water pollution; from plastics in the ocean, excess fertilizer in the rivers, poison from all kinds of chemicals, including antibiotics, birth control and other medicines flushed down the toilet after going through our bodies, animals fed antibiotics, pest control, weed control and so on. Increasing CO2 is not one of the problems, it will in fact help with erosion control, and allow us to feed more people on less agricultural land with proper management, and require less fertilizer and water to do so. In fact, proper water management is a larger problem, with some rivers no longer reaching the ocean. All water is already spoken for, especially in the 10 to 40 degrees latitude, where most people live.

Allow me to be somewhat technical and give the background to why I know we will never experience the thermal runaway they are so afraid of.

Many years ago I worked at Hewlett Packard on an Atomic Absorption Detector. It was a huge technical success but a commercial failure, as it was too expensive to use for routine applications. However it found a niche and became the detector of choice when dismantling the huge nerve gas stockpiles remaining from the cold war. I was charged with doing the spectrum analysis and produce the final data from the elements. One day two salesmen came and tried to sell us  a patented device that could identify up to 21 different elements with one analysis. They had a detector that divided the visual band into 21 parts, and bingo, with proper, not yet “fully developed” software you could now analyze up to 21 elements with one gas chromatic analysis. What could be better? We could only analyze correctly four or five elements simultaneously. It turns out the elements are absorbing in the same wavelength bands, scientifically speaking they are not orthogonal, so software massaging can only go so far. It turned out that the promised new detector was inferior to what we already had and could only quantify three or 4 elements at the most.

In the atmosphere the two most important greenhouse gases are water vapor and CO2 with methane a distant third. Water vapor is much more of a greenhouse gas everywhere except near the tropopause high above the high clouds and near the poles when the temperature is below 0 F, way below freezing. A chart shows the relationship between CO2 and water vapor:

Image result for h20 and co2 as greenhouse gases

Source: http://notrickszone.com/2017/07/31/new-paper-co2-has-negligible-influence-on-earths-temperature/

Even in Barrow, Alaska water vapor is the dominant greenhouse gas. Only at the South Pole (And North Pole) does CO2 dominate (in the long winter).

All Climate models take this into account, and that is why they all predict that the major temperature increase will occur in the polar regions with melting icecaps and other dire consequences. But they also predict a uniform temperature rise from the increased forcing from CO2 and the additional water vapor resulting from the increased temperature.

This is wrong on two accounts. First, CO2 and H2O gas are nor orthogonal, that means they both absorb in the same frequency bands. There is three bands where CO2 absorb much more than H2O in the far infrared band, but other than that H2O is the main absorber. If H2O is 80 times as common as CO2 as it is around the equator, water vapor is still the dominant absorber.

Secondly gases cannot absorb more than 100% of the energy available in any given energy wavelength! So if H2O did absorb 80% of the energy and CO2 absorbed 50% the sum is not 130%, only 90%. (0.8 + 0.5×0,2 or 0.5 + 0.8×0.5). In this example CO2 only added one quarter of what the models predicted.

How do I know this is true? Lucky for us we can measure what increasing CO2 in the atmosphere has already accomplished. For a model to have credibility it must be tested with measurements, and pass the test. There is important evidence suggesting the basic story is wrong. All greenhouse gases work by affecting the lapse rate in the tropics. They thus create a “hot spot” in the tropical troposphere. The theorized “hot spot” is shown in the early IPCC publications. (Fig A)

Fig. B shows observations. The hotspot is not there. If the hotspot is not there, the models must be wrong. So what is wrong with the models? This was reported in 2008 and the models still assume the additive nature of greenhouse gases, even to the point when more than 100% of the energy in a given band is absorbed.

How about Methane? Do not worry, it absorbs nearly exclusively in the same bands as water vapor and has no measurable influence on the climate.

But it will get warmer at the poles. That will cause melting of the ice-caps? Not so fast. When temperature rises the atmosphere can hold more water vapor, so it will snow more at higher latitudes. While winter temperatures will be higher with more snowfall, this will lower the summer temperatures until the extra snow has melted. And that is what is happening in the Arctics


As we can see from this picture, the winters were about 5 degrees warmer, but starting from May through August temperatures were lower. It takes time to melt all the extra snow.

These are my suggestions

  1. Do not worry about increasing CO2 levels. The major temperature stabilizer is clouds, and they will keep the earth from overheating by reflecting back into space a large amount of incoming solar radiation. Always did, and always will, even when the CO2 concentration was more than 10000 ppm millions of years ago. Ice ages will still come, and this is the next major climate change, maybe 10000 years from now.
  2. Clean up rivers, lakes and oceans from pollution. This is a priority.
  3. Limit Wind turbine electric energy to areas not populated by large birds to save the birds. Already over 1.3 million birds a year are killed by wind turbines, including the bald Eagles that likes to build their aeries on top of turbines.
  4. Do not build large solar concentration farms. They too kill birds.
  5. Solar panels are o.k. not in large farms, but distributed on roofs to provide backup power.
  6. Explore geothermal energy in geologically stable areas.
  7. Where ever possible add peak power generation and storage capacity to existing hydroelectric power plants
  8. Add peak power storage dams, even in wildlife preserves. The birds and animals don’t mind.
  9. Develop Thorium based Nuclear Power. Russia, China, Australia and India are ahead of us in this. Streamline permit processes. Prioritize research.
  10. Put fusion power as important for the future but do not rush it, let the research and development be scientifically determined.
  11. When Thorium power is built up and do  replace coal and gas fired plants, then is the time to switch to electric cars, not before.
  12. Standard Nuclear Power plants should be replaced by Thorium powered nuclear plants, since they have only 0,01% of the really bad long term nuclear waste.
  13. Start thinking about recovering CO2 directly from the air and produce aviation fuel. This should be done as Thorium power has replaced coal and gas fired power plants.
  14. This is but a start, but the future is not as bleak as all fearmongers state.



Beto O’Rourke just announced his candidacy for president. Does he have a message? A Limerick.

The candidate Beto O’Rourke

on Climate change is but a dork.

He does not understand

that the world will not end.

Fake News! – Only New Green Deal pork!

Quote from Beto O’Rourke:

“The scientists are unanimous on this. We have no more than 12 years to take incredibly bold action on this crisis,” O’Rourke said. “Can we make it? I don’t know. It’s up to every one of us. Do you want to make it?”

Political Cartoons by Henry Payne


Climate Change – or a remarkably stable climate? A Limerick.

It’s freezing around the North Pole.

Let’s implement climate control.

No more milk, no more beef

double speak, our belief.

Global Governance is our goal.

Yesterday, March 8 the Great Lakes ice concentration hit 80 percent

Lake Superior and Lake Erie both had an ice cover of over 95%, Lake Huron over 90%. Only Lake Michigan and Lake Ontario lagged with 60% and 40% ice cover.

This has happened only seven times in the last 45 years that the maximum ice cover has exceeded 80%. And if one looks at a graph, there seems to be no trend whatsoever.

But we just had a bad tornado outbreak in Alabama, and one more is expected. Isn’t that a sign of climate change?

Historically, strong tornadoes are declining.

And until this week the trend was down even further

So, tornadoes are down. How about wild fires?

Wildfires used to be much worse before modern forest management (Smokey the bear was the symbol) was initiated. Recent environmental concerns has led to a reversal of proper forest management “to save the environment”.

What else does increasing CO2 bring?  Take a look at all disasters.

Image result for disaster statistics

There seems to have been a strong increase in reported disasters. Could it be that the reporting got better after year 2000, after which we see a slightly declining trend.

Image result for death rate from disasters

We seem to be able to handle disasters better. It was much worse a long time ago. Or – the climate is getting more stable.

Could it be that increasing CO2 is good for the climate?

Check out https://lenbilen.com/2017/04/20/earth-day-2017-real-climate-change/

Or maybe https://lenbilen.com/2016/11/22/climate-change-is-on-balance-good-a-limerick-and-explanation/

What do you think? We have enormous environmental challenges, and pollution. CO2 is not a pollutant, but will help delay the coming of the next ice age.


Long live the Amish! – Off the grid.

It is March 6 2019, a cold morning in Intercourse, Pa. The temperature is 19F and the snow is still deep. There it is! A recently built Amish homestead with the telltale clothesline, but also a small wind turbine and four solar panels to provide

electricity. Contrary to popular opinion the Amish do not shun electricity, they just want to be left unconnected to the “English”, in other words, live off the grid. Their desire to be independent force them to be resourceful and innovative, since they also follow the law of the land whenever possible. So it was, when the farms were mandated to refrigerate the milk before pickup they installed electric coolers. The electricity was generated by diesel generators, so bingo, they could get electricity for their workshops as well, and turn from primitive hand work to fully modern wood workshops, I know, they provided a first class kitchen for our home in Intercourse. They had a problem, federal law mandated headlights on their buggies to be street legal. The propane lights with gas stockings burned well, but were too fragile to last the bumpy buggy rides so they installed car headlights running on car batteries. They had to be charged often, and it became quite expensive, so the Amish in 2003 made the first commercially available LED headlights for their buggies, thereby extending battery life nine-fold for a marine deep-charge lead-acid battery, from six hours to 100 hours.

Even at 120 dollars a piece it made economic sense. How do you charge batteries? This is where the solar panels come in, they are used to charge the batteries. When the sun doesn’t shine the wind may blow, a reasonable backup. Now they have 12 volt electric power. The next step was to wire the house and install 12 V LED lights and provide 12 volt DC or 24 volt AC outlets for small appliances. The lights are done, the appliances are still run the hard way, diesel engines providing compressed air, which run their wells with jet-pumps and in their hand mixers they take out the motor and replace with a compressed air motor. The LED lights beat kerosene lamps any day for efficiency, and even a compressed air driven refrigerator is much more efficient than a kerosene driven refrigerator.

So if the grid goes down for an extended period of time, who is better off? The Amish are far ahead of us in preparation for catastrophes.


And the Amish do get together and fellowship for any reason, but mostly for their Sunday services, which are held in the upper room of their workshops, or in the kitchen for the women and the basement for the men. The horse-drawn pew-mobile is in the picture above, to the right. This is a tell-tale sign who has the service next time.

Where is spring? Punxsutawney Phil promised an early spring. A Limerick.

How wrong was old Phil Punxsutawney?

This winter is long and outdrawney.

With the climate change lie

and no shadow came by

he believed, but it was just balawney.

Does this look like spring to you?

Image result for today's current temperatures

And the cold snap has just started. Look at the Great Lakes Ice!


Lake Superior may freeze over totally!

And look at the snow pack!


When will we be ready for electric cars?

Are we finally ready for the electric car?

Boy are we advancing in leaps and bounds:

Here is the Roberts electric car, built 1896.

It gets 40 miles to the charge.

Let us see, where does our electricity come from? In 2017 the sources were:

Coal, oil and gas 62%, Nuclear 20%, Hydroelectric 7%, Wind 6%, Solar 2% and all other sources, geothermal, wood and other biomass 3%.

Coal, and natural gas are the staples of electricity generation and will remain so for the foreseeable future until a suitable replacement has been developed.

Hydroelectric power is mostly built up and will not provide much more generation capacity. However, many dams can be augmented with peak storage capacity to even out the supply. Many of these improvements are highly profitable since they buy surplus power at low cost and sell back peak power at peak power price.

Wind power is at 7%, but there is a cost associated with that. The annual bird kill associated with wind turbines is about 1.3 million birds, the bald eagle and other large birds may again be threatened or endangered if we increase wind power substantially. Already some rare bats are endangered. The Audubon society has given it its blessing, after all, in their opinion climate change is more of a danger than the extinction of bird species.

Solar power shows some promise. The large solar concentrator power plants kill all birds that come near the hot spot, and have some other problems. Photovoltaic cells on the south facing roofs fulfill an important role. In a case of failure of the grid they can provide a limited emergency power and  they are already important for people living off the grid like the Amish and mountain dwellers. Putting up large solar farms in the desert seems like a good idea, but they need a good supply of water to be cleaned or they will be dirtied up, lowering their efficiency. Fully built up solar power can supply up to 10% of the electricity needs but that is about the practical limit.

Geothermal provides less than 1/2% of our power supply. Unfortunately geothermal energy is most abundant in geologically unstable regions.

Wood and biomass power is no real solution if you are concerned about CO2 emissions. It is better to build houses from wood, trapping the cellulose forever.

There is an old technology we can learn from the North Koreans. They enclose the cow dung and other compost and use the generated Methane for stove fuel. Recovering Methane from landfills can produce 0.1 to 0.4% of our energy.

Why am I down on electric cars? First, the energy to drive the car must have been produced somehow. As long as we use coal to produce electricity there will be more CO2 in the air with electric cars than with diesel powered cars. Second, electric cars are heavier than corresponding gasoline powered cars and have less room. Third, it takes an awful lot of mining to produce all the rare materials that goes into a modern battery. The energy used  to mine and refine all the raw materials that goes into an electec car is more than can be saved during the lifetime of the car. This too takes a lot of energy and leaves scars on the landscape. Finally, batteries last only so long and are expensive, leading to a much more expensive car to purchase and maintain.

The same arguments can be raised against solar and wind power. It takes more energy to mine and refine the materials than the equipment generate since they generate the electricity when they want, not when the need is there.

Are we doomed? Not at all. As oil and gas is becoming depleted, we should build up the nuclear power plants, not with old Uranium based nuclear plants with all their nuclear waste, but with small, distributed Thorium based plants.

Why Thorium?

We are a net importer of Uranium, even before we sold 20% of our Uranium ore to Russia. With Thorium there is a million years supply available, and it requires no extra mining since it is found in rare earth metal ores, which will bear the mining costs. They have 0.01% as much nuclear waste as uranium based plants and are earthquake safe and much less vulnerable to sabotage. They also respond much better to demand fluctuations. As the plants would be more distributed it would lessen the need for an expanded electric grid, which is unbelievably vulnerable to sabotage. The long and short of it: Go Thorium and when that is fully built up, then develop Electric cars!

In the mean time develop trucks with electric backup so they can accelerate faster in stop and go traffic and regenerate energy when braking rather than use jake brakes. In confined spaces they could then use only electric for maneuvering. . Other candidates: Buses, trolleys and delivery vehicles would also benefit from this technique.

A clouded future for the Earth? Fear not, that is what is stabilizing the temperature.

The cause of Climate Change is still up in the air.
Sherlock Holmes: “It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories instead of theories to suit facts”. From: “Scandal in Bohemia” by A. Conan Doyle.

The first Earth Day in Philadelphia 1970, April 22 (the 100 year anniversary of Lenin’s Birth) featured Ira Einhorn (The Unicorn Killer) as master of Ceremonies. The big environmental scare of the day was the threat of a new Ice Age. The clarion call was: “In the year 2000 temperatures will have fallen 10 degrees”, the culprit was pollution, especially acid rain. The acid rain was so bad in the Adirondacks, Canada, Norway and Sweden that the Rainbow Trout died in droves, and even the oceans were said to be in danger of getting too acid. Regulations were enacted to add scrubbers to power stations, waste water was purified, and – wouldn’t y you know it, the cooling trend reversed itself and was followed by warming.
Since the cooling trend was “obviously man-made” they had to find a reason for the sudden warming. Never mind that around the year 1200 there was at least one farm on South West Greenland that exported, among other things, cheese. How do we know that? They have excavated the ruins of a farm, “Gården under Sanden”, buried under permafrost for five centuries. During these five centuries the Northern Hemisphere experienced what is called “the little ice age” a time when the winters could be so cold that in 1658 the Swedish army, cavalry and artillery crossed the Belts in the southern Baltic over ice and sacked Copenhagen.

Picture left: Gården under sanden excavation.
Picture right: The crossing of the Great Belt 1658.

To predict future climate changes many computer models have been developed dealing with how the earth responds to changes in atmospheric conditions, especially how it responds to rising CO2 levels. Most were developed in the 1970 to 2000 time frame, a time of rapid temperature rise and as such they were all given a large factor for the influence of rising CO2. Since 2000 we have had what is called “the pause”, a time with no statistically significant temperature rise,  so the models cooperated less and less and produced more and more unreliable predictions. It is no wonder then that they all have failed to model the past. None of them have reproduced the medieval warm period or the little ice age. If they cannot agree with the past there is no reason to believe they have any ability to predict the future. The models are particularly bad when it comes to predict cloud cover and also what time of day clouds appear and disappear.
Below is a chart of a number of climate models and their prediction of cloud cover versus observed data. Note especially to the right where they completely fail to notice the clear skies over Antarctica.

Is there a better way to predict future temperature trends? When you go to the doctor for a physical, at some point and without warning he hits you under the knee with a hammer and watches your reaction. He is observing your impulse response. Can we observe impulse responses for the earth? One obvious case is volcanic explosions. Sometimes the earth burps a lot of carbon dioxide or methane. But the most interesting response would be how the earth responds to a solar flare with a sudden change in the amount of cosmic radiation hitting the earth. That would give the best indication how the sun and cosmic radiation affects cloud formation.

A couple of solar flares lately have been giving us a hint how the cloud cover responds to changes in cosmic radiation, and they are consistent with the latest results from the CLOUD project conducted using the CERN particle accelerator, a confirmation of a theory forwarded by the Danish Physicist Henrik Svensmark. He first presented the theory in 1997 and finally got the results verified and published in 2007, but the prevailing consensus has been slow to accept the theory that the sun as the primary driver of climate change.
We have many reasons to be concerned about the well-being of the earth, but rising levels of CO2 is not one of them. In fact, CO2 is our friend. Rising CO2 levels increases crop yields, makes the impact of land use changes less pronounced and the photosynthesis process more efficient, using less water and allowing us to grow crops on land once deemed unprofitable.

James Hansen, a world famous climate science activist/NASA physicist writes in one of his publications, called “Earth’s Energy Imbalance and Implications“.
It contains a quote that fits nicely with Sherlock Holmes observation:
The precision achieved by the most advanced generation of radiation budget satellites is indicated by the planetary energy imbalance measured by the ongoing CERES (Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System) instrument (Loeb et al., 2009), which finds a measured 5-year-mean imbalance of 6.5 W/m2 (Loeb et al., 2009). Because this result is implausible, instrumentation calibration factors were introduced to reduce the imbalance to the imbalance suggested by climate models, 0.85 W/m2 (Loeb et al., 2009).

There we have it. The observed data does not fit the climate models. Change the observed data! Then use that data to validate the climate models! How convEEnient, as the SNL Churchlady used to say.
Shenanigans like this have been exposed in what has been named “Climategate1.0”, followed by “Climategate2.0” and “Climategate3.0”
This is what happens when politicians take over science and make further funding contingent on obtaining desired results.
James Hansen arrested Aug 29 2011 at a Keystone XL pipeline protest outside the White House.

And now, this is the official basis for enacting the Green New Deal. They have come a long way since then, but the science they claim is settled is not. It is just flawed. Look at the clouds! They provide the negative feedback that keeps the climate from overheating.

Yet I am hopeful that the scientists are catching on to the major fallacy of the models, their failure to correctly model the clouds and their changing behavior with increasing CO2.

This is an excerpt from the IPCC Fifth Assessment.

Box 2.1 | Advances, Confidence and Uncertainty in Modelling the Earth’s Climate System Improvements in climate models since the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) are evident in simulations of continental-scale surface temperature, large-scale precipitation, the monsoon, Arctic sea ice, ocean heat content, some extreme events, the carbon cycle, atmospheric chemistry and aerosols, the effects of stratospheric ozone and the El Niño-Southern Oscillation. Climate models reproduce the observed continental-scale surface temperature patterns and multi-decadal trends, including the more rapid warming since the mid-20th century and the cooling immediately following large volcanic eruptions (very high confidence). The simulation of large-scale patterns of precipitation has improved somewhat since the AR4, although models continue to perform less well for precipitation than for surface temperature. Confidence in the representation of processes involving clouds and aerosols remains low. {WGI SPM D.1, 7.2.3, 7.3.3, 7.6.2, 9.4, 9.5, 9.8, 10.3.1}The ability to simulate ocean thermal expansion, glaciers and ice sheets, and thus sea level, has improved since the AR4, but significant challenges remain in representing the dynamics of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. This, together with advances in scientific understanding and capability, has resulted in improved sea level projections in this report, compared with the AR4. {WGI SPM E.6, 9.1.3, 9.2, 9.4.2, 9.6, 9.8, 13.1, 13.4, 13.5}There is overall consistency between the projections from climate models in AR4 and AR5 for large-scale patterns of change and the magnitude of the uncertainty has not changed significantly, but new experiments and studies have led to a more complete and rigorous characterization of the uncertainty in long-term projections. {WGI 12.4}