Grassroots Commentary

Global Warming -- Let's Get Real

Fred Fox · Oct. 14, 2014

A major cause of global warming (climate change) is Earth’s being in an interglacial phase. Earth is warming naturally, recovering from a glacial phase when cooler temperatures prevailed. In other words, global warming is a perfectly natural phenomenon. Fact. Certainly the natural interglacial warming trend is responsible for some part of Earth’s rising surface temperatures (less than 1 degree C since 1850).

The current controversy revolves around the contribution of burning fossil fuels to warming – some believe increased atmospheric carbon dioxide levels to be a factor. The question is: how much? CO2 is a minor atmospheric gas (0.04%), while water vapor makes up roughly 75% of atmospheric gases. It would appear that water vapor (clouds, etc.) also contributes to Earth’s warming. But how much?

Carbon dioxide is converted to oxygen by flora and back to CO2 by fauna; nature compensates for changes in earth conditions as a matter of course to encourage life on earth. Another question: can nature compensate for unnatural increases in CO2? Answer: We do not know. Perhaps more flora (terrestrial and marine) will be produced to use more CO2 and produce more oxygen.

Mathematical models have been constructed to predict warming by increased atmospheric CO2. However there is considerable evidence that presumed sensitivity to CO2 is too high. Nor do these models consider all of the factors which could contribute to global warming. Only one example:

Water covers more than 70% of Earth’s surface to an average depth of 2-½ miles; some 345 MILLION CUBIC MILES of water are in constant motion by little-understood variables like convection, pressure, chemistry, evaporation, gravity and the effect of Earth’s rotation. This massive (and active) heat sink has great impact on moderating Earth temperatures in the atmosphere and therefore the biosphere as well. There is constant exchange of energy between the oceans and the atmosphere that helps maintain Earth’s life-encouraging balance.

Ocean currents are believed to be responsible for 40% of global heat transport. More than 17 major currents, some warm, others cold, affect climate worldwide. All move vast amounts of seawater over vast areas of Earth in all three dimensions to depths up to 1000 meters. However, little is known of deep oceans’ effect on global temperatures.

The conflict cannot be settled until models include significant variables affecting them. Rushing into solutions to problems that may not exist is political, not scientific. Let’s get real…

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