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二氧化碳不是决定气候变化的主要因素 (第1部分)

 

Are We Heating up the Earth?

 

We hear millions of times that earth temperature keeps on rising; if not curtailed, anthropogenic global warming will destroy humanity. Go-Green is the new religion that is spreading to every corner of the world.  Warnings about global warming are everywhere in the news.

 

“Proponents of cuts in greenhouse gases cited the (ice cap) meltdown as proof that human activities are propelling a slide toward climate calamity.”-New York Times

 

“Spring comes earlier than it used to in Tasiilaq, Greenland. The snow starts to melt weeks before it did even a decade ago in this small Inuit settlement, while ice that was once a permanent fixture on the nearby slopes now sloughs off during the short summer.”-Financial Times

 

“1998 summer was the hottest summer of millennium” -American Geophysical Union news release.

 

“The polar ice cap as a whole is shrinking. Images from NASA satellites show that the area of permanent ice cover is contracting at a rate of 9 percent each decade. If this trend continues, summers in the Arctic could become ice-free by the end of the century” -NASA

 

"Early-Blooming Wildflowers: A Sign of Global Warming?” – Time

 

James Hansen is the godfather of global warming who has rung the bell of CO2 warning since the 80s.  He joined NASA in 1967 and was the pioneer of building a model to systematically measure and monitor global surface temperature. In 1981, his publication in Science was the first to demonstrate rising global temperature in the past century, to predict earth warming (from a cooling between 1940-1970) and increased influence of anthropogenic CO2. 

 

Hansen and his team further analyzed data of surface air temperature from 1880 to 1985. The result was published in 1987. They concluded that warming in the past century was found to be 0.5-0.7 °C, with warming similarly in both hemispheres. And they also analyzed the correlation of temperature data from stations in different distances. 

 

Source: Hansen etc. Climate impact of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide. Science, 213, 957-966.

 

He updated this research in 1999 to report that 1998 was the warmest year since the instrumental data began in 1880. They also found that the rate of temperature change was larger than any time in instrument history. Hansen stated in an interview in January 2009, "We cannot now afford to put off change any longer. We have to get on a new path within this new administration. We have only four years left for Obama to set an example to the rest of the world. America must take the lead."

 

The conclusion that 1998 summer was the hottest was also supported by research work from Michael Mann, who conducted a tree-ring based study of earth temperature to finish his Ph.D. at University of Massachusetts.  Mann’s study was a post child of researches that proved global warming in last millennium, was cited and quoted by many global warming publications.

 

In his publication, Mann said: ”the 1990s was the warmest decade, and 1998 the warmest years, at moderately high levels of confidence.” In last 1000 years, temperature has been very stable until  the start of industrialization, based on his study.

 

The work done by Michael Mann at University of Massachussets, Phil Jones and Keith Briffa of Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia (UK) are the basis for IPCC's conclusion that "the rate and magnitude of global or hemispheric surface 20th century warming is likely to have been the largest of the millennium, with the 1990s and 1998 likely to have been the warmest decade and year”

 

 

Source: “Northern Hemisphere temperatures during the past millennium: inferences, uncertainties, and limitations” by Michael e. Mann.  Geophysical research letters, VOL 26, No. 6, Pages 759-762, March 15, 1999. 

 

In 2001, this “hockey stick” shaped graph of global temperature was incorporated in IPCC’s Third Assessment Report, as a decisively convincing evidence of global warming since Industrial Revolution.

 

Based on those studies, IPCC and Al Gore believed that “science is settled”. The Earth’s temperature has been rising since the industrial revolution, and this rise was mainly contributed by burning coal and oil fossil fuels. CO2 emmission, as a greenhouse gas, was pointed as the culprit for causing rising earth temperature. The rise of CO2 concentration in atmosphere was believed to be anthropogenic and causing global warming.

 

FLAWS OF THOSE STUDIES:

 

Counter argument 1:

Mann’s study was challenged by a Canadian statistician, Stephen McIntyre, who was a mining industry expert.  In 2002, McIntyre immediate cast suspicion on Mann’s data analysis.  He had extensive experience in rejecting estimates of mineral reserves made by their owners.  He ran a Climate Audit blog, which questioned the validity of the statistical analyses used to create the ‘hockey stick’ graph. He also criticized the quality of global temperature data from NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS), headed by James Hansen.

 

By his relentless criticism and adamant request for data, methods and source codes from Mann, Mann reluctantly shared some of his data with McIntyre and then stopped. Eventually, Mann shared all the data after the intervention of National Science Foundation and Congressman Joe Barton. McIntyre conducted his own analysis of Mann’s research data, using a different statistical method.

 

In 2003, Stephen McIntyre and Ross McKitrick published in the journal Energy and Environment 14(6) 751-772 "Corrections to the Mann et al. (1998) Proxy Data Base and Northern Hemisphere Average Temperature Series". In this publication, McIntyre and McKitrick expressed their difficulty to reproduce the results of Mann. 

 

The controversy of Mann’s and other’s research data attracted the attention of US Energy and Commerce Committee, which convened a team of scientists by the National Research Council to assess Mann’s data.  Additionally, Congressman Joe Barton requested Dr. Edward Wegman and another two statisticians to conduct the same analysis. 

 

In 2006, the Wegman committee issued their reports that rejected the Mann’s hockey stick graph, and supported McIntyre’s conclusion.  “In general, we found MBH98 and MBH99 to be somewhat obscure and incomplete and the criticisms of MM03/05a/05b to be valid and compelling” (Page 3 of Wegman report).

 

Source: Wegman report.  Top panel is the Mann’s original analysis and result.  Bottom panel is the result based on a Wegman review that utilized a statistical method advocated by McIntyre.

 

In 2007, when IPCC published its SUMMARY FOR POLICYMAKER of its voluminous Fourth Assessment Report (AR-4), Mann’s “hockey stick” graph was dropped. 

 

Counter argument 2:

 

In 2001, Dr. Syun-Ichi Akasofu demonstrated that since 1660, central England has been gradually heating up at a rate of 0.5 Celsius degree per 100 years. However, this rising temperature is due to reversing from a little ice age, and the increase is linear and gradual. Industrialization in Europe, the United States and Japan did not cause any sudden acceleration of temperature rise.

Dr. Syun-Ichi Akasofu, a Founding Director and Professor of Physics, Emeritus, was the director of the International Arctic Research Center of the University of Alaska.  From the establishment of the research center in 1998 till January of 2007, Dr. Akasofu has published more than 550 professional journal articles, authored and co-authored 10 books, and has been invited to author many encyclopedia articles. His paper on the aurora published in 1964 was cited as one of the most quoted papers.

His view was that much of the warming of the 20th century was a continuation of whatever natural trend that drove the increase in the previous century. That linear increase of 0.5 degree per 100 years, is likely to be a natural change, due to recovering from the little ice age. 

Source: Akasofu, University of Alaska.

Hence, the man-made greenhouse effect should be the difference between the actual rise of temperature and the natural trend. Nevertheless, the difference is so minuscule that no one would even call it global warming.  CO2 can cause greenhouse effects, but CO2 alone cannot be the primary cause of global warming.

Counter argument 3:

In 2004, Polyakov etc published the average temperature record at the stations along the coast of the Arctic Ocean.  We can see that the temperature rose rapidly between 1920 and 1940, and also from 1970 to 2000.  What is striking is the drop in temperature from 1940 to 1960 in the Arctic, and the rise of CO2 level from 290 ppm to 315 ppm. (according to Scripps Institution of Oceanography)

Source: Polyakov etc 2004. The red line is the rise of global temperature as reported in IPCC 2007 report. Arctic temperature rises more rapidly than the average temperature.

 

My view of rising earth temperature:

 

It is extremely difficult to measure a global average temperature because we can not install a thermometer on every inch of the earth.  Temperature is measured at selected spots of the earth.  Are those spots evenly distributed? No. Are there any biases of their locations? YES. Most land based weather station, built in the 1950s and 1960s, are located in the suburban areas of major cities because there was no need or necessity to know the temperature and weather in remote areas.

 

What happened in those suburban areas in the last decades? They are becoming urban areas! They are now surrounded by high-rises, by new power plants, by shopping malls and by cars driving through. 

 

What are the effects of urban development on global reported temperature?  Here is an example of weather stations located at different neighborhoods that have generated different trends of local climate trend. A measuring station in  an undeveloped suburban neighborhood showed a cooling pattern, while a station on a residential area showed an upward trend of local temperature

 

Source: USHCN

 

 

Dr. Ross McKitrick is a professor of environmental economics at University of Guelph, Canada. He is widely-cited in Canada and around the world as an expert on global warming and environmental policy issues. He has been interviewed by Time, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The National Post, The Globe and Mail, the CBC, BBC, Bloomberg, Global TV, CTV, and several others.

 

He constructed this chart of overlapping average temperature and the number of global stations.  There was a significant loss of stations since 1990 in the former Soviet Union, China, Africa and South America. This loss of stations coincided with a sudden rise of average temperature.  Is it because those lost stations are in remote areas so that the remaining stations are mostly located near cities?  We know that cities are heat islands.

 

A map of global weather stations shows clearly that they are distributed unevenly.

 

Source:Dr. Ross Mckitrick.   http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rmckitri/research/nvst.html

Source: NASA map by Robert Simmon, based on data from the National Climatic Data Center.

The bias from surface measurement of earth temperature is easy to understand.  Hence, average of data from weather stations is not a reliable source to definitely answer the question of whether the earth is heating up or not.  Sampling errors and surface variability can easy distort the conclusion.  We have to find different ways to measure the earth temperature.

Can we measure the earth temperature of the air and of the ocean water? Yes, actually. We have the temperature data of the low atmosphere (called troposphere) from balloon carried instruments since 1958, and from satellite instruments since 1979.  Those measurements should reflect the true earth surface temperature.  According to IPCC advocated climate model, atmosphere temperature should rise if the earth surface warms up, because more radiation from the surface will heat up molecules in the air. 

The data came out from balloons and satellites disappointed believers of global warming. Those data did NOT show the same warming trend of earth temperature as was hoped. A report by the National Research Council in the late 1990s that reviewed the upper air temperature trends stated that:

"Data collected by satellites and balloon-borne instruments since 1979 indicate little if any warming of the low- to mid-troposphere—the atmospheric layer extending up to about 5 miles from the Earth's surface. Climate models generally predict that temperatures should increase in the upper air as well as at the surface if increased concentrations of greenhouse gases are causing the warming.”

 

Not surprisingly, the significant discrepancy between weather station data and satellite data created huge controversies. US Climate Science Program took on the task of re-analyzing the data.  After extensive efforts of different scientific bodies, they could still not agree on one definite conclusion. IPCC (of course) said that significant discrepancy no longer exists because errors in the satellite and radiosonde data have been identified and corrected.  Others said that issues with reconciling data and models remain.  Here is the chart from IPCC’s report on this satellite issue.  Honestly, I can not see any clear trend. 

Source: IPCC - Climate Change 2001: Working Group I: The Scientific Basis Figure 2.12

Did Anyone See More Hurricanes?

"Experts warn global warming likely to continue spurring more outbreaks of intense activity." - Kevin Trenberth

“Stronger Link Found between Hurricanes and Global Warming. A century's worth of records suggests that hurricanes are on the rise and a warming Atlantic is to blame.”  - David Biello

In the eyes of global warming, many naturally occurring events are the victim of rising earth temperature, including hurricane, flu, and even pest outbreak.   We have read many publications, from scientific journals to newspapers, which linked hurricanes to global warming in the last few years.  The 2005 Hurricane Katrina became such an easy scare tool to use.  Due to lack of evidence and data, many of those articles drew their conclusions from suggestions and speculations.

Not only did they create media hype, but also travesty jokes.

Dr. Kevin Trenberth is a well accomplished scientist as the Head of the Climate Analysis Section at the National Center for Atmospheric Research. He has published 450 scientific papers, including 47 books and 198 journal articles, which places  him among the top 20 authors with highest citations in all of geophysics.  He shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Price with Al Gore. 

In an article published in the Scientific American, June 17, 2007, “Warmer Oceans, Stronger Hurricanes. Evidence is mounting that global warming enhances a cyclone's damaging winds and flooding rains”, he said that “The summer of 2004 seemed like a major wake-up call: an unprecedented four hurricanes hit Florida, and 10 typhoons made landfall in Japan—four more than the previous record in that region.”

“Global climate change, and global warming in particular, create a different background environment in which the hurricanes are working,” he said, “The sea surface temperatures are a little warmer, the whole environment is a bit wetter, there’s more humidity, and that’s the main fuel for hurricanes.”

This sounded quite convincing and reasonable. However, there was no hard data from the past hurricane activities to support the conclusion.  In 2005, while Dr. Trenberth was leading the effort to draft the Fourth Assessment Report of IPCC (AR-4 report) on hurricane activities, among the team scientists who were recruited to write for the report was the National Hurricane Center's chief scientist, Dr. Chris Landsea. It is a privilege to be a writer for this report as we know IPCC is the leading global organization focusing on climate issues. Dr. Landsea received the American Meteorological Society's Banner I. Miller award for the "best contribution to the science of hurricane and tropical weather forecasting."

While preparing for the write-up of the report, Dr. Landsea experienced a politicalized, non-objective process in citing evidences and drawing conclusions about hurricane and global warming. His concern about mis-representation of scientific data was dismissed by Dr. Trenberth and the rest of IPCC leadership. In an open letter, Dr. Landsea wrote:

“All previous and current research in the area of hurricane variability has shown no reliable, long-term trend up in the frequency or intensity of tropical cyclones, either in the Atlantic or any other basin.”

"I personally cannot in good faith continue to contribute to a process that I view as both being motivated by pre-conceived agendas and being scientifically unsound. As the IPCC leadership has seen no wrong in Dr. Trenberth’s actions and have retained him as a Lead Author for the AR4, I have decided to no longer participate in the IPCC AR4.”

I am glad we have great scientists in the world who are objective, non-biased and insistent on their research.  They enlighten humans understanding of nature, and help make right policies for the society and future generations. We owe them the biggest thanks.

Here are the data that demonstrated no increased frequency of storms and hurricane in last 50 years by Dr. Klotzbach.

Source: Philip Klotzbach etc. 2007. Dept. of Atmospheric Sciences, Colorado State University.

Source: Annual average maximum wind speeds recorded in Atlantic basin tropical cyclones (Landsea C.W., et al., 1996).

During the 2010 season, there was no hurricane landfall in US, despite that 12 hurricanes formed in the Atlantic Ocean. 

Now, who and what should we believe about  hurricanes and global warming? And about CO2 and climate change?  Analyzing the huge amount of climate data is not everyone’s job. It needs tremendous resources and efforts.  Only the large scientific and political bodies like IPCC or US Global Change Research Program have the funding and scientists to conduct  large scale research and review. The rest of us can only read newspapers and listen to the evening TV talks.  It is very scary if those researches are biased and politically motivated. 

Who will safeguard the objectivity of our climate research?

Climate is constantly changing and is affected by many factors, both earthly ones and extraterrestrial factors. Temperature will move upward and downward, depending where we are in the cycle.  Change is constant. Supporting this view is British scientist Jane Francis, who maintains that:

"What we are seeing really is just another interglacial phase within our big icehouse climate." Dismissing political calls for a global effort to reverse climate change, she said, "It's really farcical because the climate has been changing constantly... What we should do is be more aware of the fact that it is changing and that we should be ready to adapt to the change."

今年的联合国气候变化大会于11月28日至12月9日在南非的德班召开。每年一度的全球碳排放会议已经举行了17次了。最有实质意义是1997 的京都会议,该会通过的京都协议书至今已有191国家签署。但是如果今年的大会未能达成新的协议,京都协议将于2012底过期。关于碳排放量的争议,已超过了传统的在发达国家和发展中国家之间的矛盾。各国出于自身利益,不断调整自己的筹码和底线,使得谈判的复杂性远远超过以前。在人们开始互相指责前,有很多问题需要考虑。

1. 二氧化碳假设的由来

詹姆斯·汉森是全球变暖的教父,他在80年代早期就提出了二氧化碳导致全球变暖的警告,他1967年加入美国宇航局,是建立系统性的测量和观测全球地表温度的模型的先锋。1981年他在科学杂志上的文章,第一次证明了在过去的一个世纪中,全球变暖的趋势,并且预测地球的温度将逐渐升高。“从1940年到1970年的全球变暖趋势的反转。”以及人造二氧化碳对地球温度的影响,汉森和他的团队进一步分析了1880年到1985年,地球表面温度的数据,这个结果发表在1987年,他们的结论是在过去的100年中,温度的升高是0.5到0.7度,南北半球升高的温度是一致的。他们还进一步分析了处在不同距离的气象站所提供的温度数据的相关关系。

数据来源:汉森等,大气中二氧化碳对气候的影响《科学杂志》213卷957-966页

1999年,他更新了这一研究结果,并指出1998年是自1880年以来,有仪器记录的数据中,温度最高的一年。他们还发现地球温度的变化速度也是有仪器记录以来最快的。汉森在2009年1月份接受记者采访时指出:“我们不能够再等下去了,我们希望这一届新的政府能使美国踏上新的里程,奥巴马政府只有四年时间给全球树个榜样,美国必须采取行动。”

汉森的这一结论,1998年的夏天是最热的夏天,同时得到了迈克·马恩研究的结果的支持。迈克·马恩在麻萨诸塞大学读博士的时候,根据树的年轮来估测地球的温度,马恩的研究是所有证明地球变暖研究中的典型结果。被各种全球变暖的报刊杂志所引用。在他的研究报告中,马恩指出:“90年代是最温暖的年代,1998年是温度最高的一年。”在过去的一千年中,地球的温度一直是稳定的,直到工业革命的开始。麻萨诸赛大学的迈克·马恩连同英国东安吉利亚大学的琼斯和布瑞发的研究,使得IPCC(联合国政府间气候变化委员会)得出结论:“20世纪地球以来地球表面温度升高的速度和幅度是过去一千年来最快的,90年代和1998年,很可能是温度最高的年代和年份。”(

资料来源:迈克马恩“北半球过去一千年的温度:推断,不确定性和局限性”《地球物理研究》26卷  1999年3月份5号)

在2001年,马恩的“冰球棒”形状的全球一千年的温度图被收在了IPCC的《第三次评估报告》作为证明自工业革命以来,全球变暖的决定性的、强有力的证明。根据这些研究结果,IPCC和美国前副总统戈尔相信:“科学已经确认了”。地球的温度自工业革命以来在不断升高,这些升高主要是由于燃烧煤和石油等化石燃料所造成的。所释放的二氧化碳作为一种温室气体被认为是造成全球温度升高的祸首。大气中二氧化碳浓度的升高被认为是人类使用化石燃料所造成的,并且造成了全球变暖。

2. 二氧化碳假设的致命缺陷

反面证剧第一:

马恩的研究立即受到加拿大统计学家迈克因特的挑战,迈克因特是一个采矿行业专家,在2002年迈克因特立刻对马恩的数据分析提出怀疑,他有丰富的经验、评估和拒绝矿业主所提供的矿产资源储藏量的数据估计,因为这些业主总是倾向于夸大矿产资源储藏量。根据他的工作经验,他开始了一个气候变化调查博客,对于马恩的“冰球棒”形状的数据,从统计分析的角度,质疑这一分析的可靠性。他同时也挑战汉森的美国宇航局所提供的全球温度数据的质量是否可靠。马恩一开始拒绝了迈克因特的要求,但是,迈克因特坚持不懈地从马恩那里要求分享他的数据、方法和计算机编码。在迈克因特毫不留情的批评下,马恩很不情愿地分享了他的一部分数据,然后停止了。最后由于迈克因特的不懈努力,在美国国家科学院和国会议员巴顿的干预下。马恩才分享了他的所有数据。因为马恩的研究得到美国政府的研究资金。根据美国法律决定,他必须和公众分享他所有的研究数据和结果,迈克因特用不同的统计方法对马恩的研究数据进行了他自己的分析。

2003年迈克因特和迈克·克里克在《能源和环境》杂志上发表了文章,“对于马恩的数据库和北半球平均温度序列的纠正”。在这一文章中,迈克因特说,他们很难重复马恩所报道的研究结果。也就是说迈克因特不同意马恩对于数据的分析,也不能重复马恩所显示的结果。

关于马恩和其他研究数据的争议引起了美国能源和商业部委员会的注意。该委员会召集了国家研究委员会一个专家团队去评估马恩的数据。另外,国会议员巴顿请求瓦格曼博士和另外两个统计学家对马恩的数据进行同样的分析。2006年,瓦格曼委员会发表了他们的评估报告,拒绝了马恩的“冰球棒”形状的图表,支持了迈克因特的结论。“总的来说,我们认为MBH98和MBH99看上去似乎很模糊,也不完全。我们认为迈克因特的批评是有效和强有力的。”(资料来源:瓦格曼报告第三页)

资料来源:瓦格曼报告.瓦格曼报告上半部分是马恩最初的分析和结果,下半部分是瓦格曼的评估,使用的统计方法是迈克因特所倡导的。

2007年,在IPCC给各国政府政策制定者的所编写的《第四评估报告摘要》中,马恩的“冰球棒”形状的图表被删除了。

反面证剧第二:

2001年,赤祖父俊一博士的研究报告显示自从1660年以来,英格兰中部的温度在以每一百年0.5度的速度逐渐升高,但是该温度的升高是自上一个小冰川时代结束后的温度反弹。而且这一温度升高的趋势是线性的和逐渐的,欧洲、美国和日本的工业化并没有导致温度升高的突然加速。赤祖父俊一博士是阿拉斯加大学的国际北极研究中心的发起领导人之一,也是该大学退休的物理学教授。从建立研究中心的1998年到2007年的1月份,赤祖父俊一博士发表了550篇研究报告,和其他作者合作写作了10本书,并且被邀请参加多篇百科全书文章的写作。他1964年发表的《关于北极极光的研究报告》是科学界引用最多的文章,他的观点是20世纪的变暖是前一个世纪地球变暖趋势的继续。而这一趋势,我们并不知道导致的原因是什么。是线性的,每年一百年升高0.5度是一自然现象,是从上一个小冰川时代的温度反弹。

数据来源:赤祖父俊一博士,阿拉斯加大学的国际北极.

所以,人造的温室气候的影响,应该是地球实际温度的变化减去一个自然趋势,然而这样的变化差是如此之小,没有人会认为全球变暖存在了。二氧化碳确实能导致温室效应,但是,二氧化碳本身不是全球变暖的主要原因。

反面证剧第三:

2004年保利科夫发表了沿着北极海岸线气象站所记录的平均温度,我们可以看出温度在1920年到1940年有快速的升高。同样,1970年到2000年,但令人吃惊的是,1940年到1960年北极的温度有明显的下降。同时期二氧化碳的大气浓度从290ppm增加到315ppm,(根据施贵宝海洋学研究所)。

数据来源:Polyakov 2004. 红线是IPCC2007年报告中的全球温度趋势,蓝线是北极海岸线平均温度。

(待续)

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