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The Inconvenient Skeptic: The Comprehensive Guide to the Earth's Climate
 
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The Inconvenient Skeptic: The Comprehensive Guide to the Earth's Climate [Format Kindle]

John Kehr , Mazal Simantov

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Descriptions du produit

Présentation de l'éditeur

The story of our Earth is one of constant change. Only by understanding why the Earth has changed in the past is it possible to predict how it will change in the future. Four years ago I considered the theory of global warming to be a real possibility, but I found that I could not wholly commit to it without understanding the science of the Earth's climate. With my background as an engineer in the private R&D field as my guide, I decided to understand the Earth's climate and the theory of global warming for myself. This book tells of my journey through the science and the controversy that surrounds the global warming debate. It tells the history of the Earth's past climate and how it became the climate of today. It is this knowledge that made me a global warming skeptic. This book is not for those that wish to ignore the science of the debate, it is for those that want to learn about why the Earth changes. Climate will change in the future, if you want to know why, then read this book.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 18163 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 289 pages
  • Pagination - ISBN de l'édition imprimée de référence : 0984782915
  • Editeur : John Kehr; Édition : First Edition (23 octobre 2011)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B006009P8W
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
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Amazon.com: 4.6 étoiles sur 5  33 commentaires
42 internautes sur 44 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Climate as an Engineer Correctly Sees It 23 novembre 2011
Par B. Hutchins - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
The author's background of being trained in one field of engineering, working in another field of engineering, and now showing an interest in the science surrounding climate change resonates with me and probably many other engineers. It comes as a surprise to many non-technically-trained people that it is possible (sometimes even easy - but it IS work) to develop a good understanding of a different field of science or technology. It's called "continuing education". What do engineers know? When I suggested to an acquaintance that we should let the engineers run the world, the reply was that engineers don't really know much, they just know how to make things work! I am still having trouble seeing this as a criticism. Further, engineers have a good intuitive feel for whether something that is proposed (a device, or even a theory) makes sense and should work. Engineers know (and respect) the laws of physics, and many have a good feel for control theory. This is solid.

Kehr, while expecting to be dubbed a mere dilettante, has done some remarkable things here. Unlike many otherwise praiseworthy books on "climate change" that do delve into the science, he has set a "big picture" and offered his observations and conclusions at a level most physicist and engineers can embrace. Other books say (and show a graph or two) that the climate always changes, over ranges and at rates much greater than anything we are discussing today. Unfortunately, such brief introductions perhaps tend to compartmentalizes perceptions as to what is "normal" into extremes: (1) that which seems way WAY too long ago to be comprehensible, let along important (the heck with that!) and (2) that which is happening right now (hey look! look here!).

Kehr drums home this issue of the need for a deep perspective. He shows us the ranges, the dynamics, AND AT LEAST HIGHLY PLAUSIBLE REASONS (such as changes in the earth's orbit and geological shifts at the surface) why climate (but not the laws of physics!) changes still. This he does in detail. The sun of course does matter! Shifting ocean currents do matter. Perhaps we knew these things - or should have understood them, or thought we did. Why do we have a feeling he is putting pieces back in a puzzle we once finished (or abandoned at some point)? Someone shook the puzzle, and then put back only a few recent pieces. He reminds us of things right under our upturned noses.

Right now (within a few hundred years) we are at an unremarkable point in time and temperature space - EXCEPT were it not for our corresponding explosion of scientific competency at this same moment, we would have no metric to even suppose climate even changes, nor any sense that our technology could even be an issue. Inside the geological causes (10 of millions of years) we have the orbital causes (100,000 years) and we are locally (in time perhaps for decades to millennia) in the noise of ocean current cycles, solar cycles, etc. But probably very very little if anything that is anthropogenic, and certainly not CO2 causes.

And he does take a stand as he should - it is important to have the science right. He points out, for example, the absurdity of confusing energy fluxes to and FROM the atmosphere with a NET positive transfer of energy from the earth's surface TO the atmosphere. Who has not noted that the radiation flux down FROM the atmosphere (333 watts/square meter) is so much warmer than the direct sunlight (161 watts/square meter)! Let's enhance the notion of a green-house effect this way. For that matter, let's all enhance our pay by the same method of supplying most of it upfront.

The earth, viewed on a proper time scale, is not warming. We are, after all, technically very much IN an ice age! We happen to be in an "interglacial" phase rather than in a "glacial" phase. The old joke about glacial erratics - the glacier just went back to get another load of rocks - comes to mind. Currently (last 1 million years) glacials last nearly 100,000 years, and interglacials only 10,000 - 20,000. Kehr says we are 3000 years into the start of cooling (what he calls "climate autumn"). All manner of smaller effects will cause noise on the scale of a few hundred years, and these can be exploited by those with non-scientific agendas.

Kehr, I am convinced, studied this, pieced it together, and documented all this FOR himself. He wanted to know himself. It was kind of him to write it all down for the rest of us. There will be those however who will not appreciate his good deed.
21 internautes sur 21 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 The best climate science within a single book 24 janvier 2013
Par Gaetan Lion - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
When Kehr looks at modern temperature records since 1970, he compares two Earth stations time series including the infamous CRU (subject of Climategate) vs two satellite time series. You can clearly see that the controversial CRU series shows by far the most pronounced Global warming pattern (pg. 22). And, the two satellite series that are deemed much more accurate (better coverage, better capture ocean temperature, not affected by the Urban Island Effect) show far less Global warming. Unsurprisingly, the climatology community has relied more extensively on the CRU series.

Kehr outlines what are the main causes of the changes in the Earth's temperature. Those include:

1) The geography of the Earth (composition of land vs ocean mix);
2) The Climate or Milankovitch cycles of changes in solar energy imparted to the Earth over 100,000 year-periods (Milutin Milankovic was a Serbian engineer that first uncovered those long climate cycles);
3) Energy Gap whereby the Earth looses more energy into space when it is warm than otherwise. This is a mean reverting phenomenon that constraints change in temperatures and ensure our planet remains livable;
4) Ocean temperature oscillations play a major role over short term temperature changes as we have experienced over the past few decades.

Absent from this list of climate causal factor is CO2. Kehr spends a good deal of the book explaining why that is the case.

The Earth's geography is a very important climatic factor. This is because land mass temperatures are a lot more volatile and have a more pronounced seasonality than oceans'. That is what we mean when we say Minneapolis has a more continental climate than San Francisco. Similarly, the Northern Hemisphere (NH) has a far greater seasonality than the Southern Hemisphere (SH) because the NH has a lot more land (39% land vs 61% ocean) than the SH (19% land vs 81% ocean). As a result, the NH seasonal average temperature changes dominate the Earth's overall average temperature changes.

Temperature changes at the poles are much greater than at the equator. Given the NH greater temperature seasonality, it is not surprising the North Pole's ice melts extensively during the summer. Meanwhile, the South Pole ice sheet is a lot more stable as the average temperature is colder and varies less. Antarctica has had permanent ice sheets for over 34 million years. Antarctica will remain much as it is today as long as its location and shape does not change and the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) remains unchanged.

The Earth's climate is very much driven by the amount of energy (Watts per square meter) the Earth receives from the Sun, called insolation, at the NH at the 65 degree latitude and north of it (65N).

To understand the climate you have to study the Milankovitch cycles. The Earth's climate has a very long pattern lasting a total of 100,000 years with four seasons. The winter is the dominant season and lasts typically 70,000 years which is associated with a drop in insolation and temperature and returns the Earth to an Ice Age. The other three seasons are compressed within the remaining 30,000 years. So, to understand the present you have to go back 130,000 years to compare the current pattern of this season vs the previous same season. We are now in the Holocene Summer which is best compared with the previous one or the Eemian Summer. Looking at our current warming century to project the climate is like considering a warm October day and predicting further rise in temperatures while we are heading into the winter. It is more relevant to compare this year's October temperature to last year's October.

During the rising temperature phase of the Eemian, the Earth's temperature was 3 to 5 degree Celsius higher than during the Holocene. Yet, CO2 concentration was 270 ppm or over 100 ppm lower than currently. Then, between 120,000 and 115,000 years ago the Earth's temperature dropped by 4 degree Celsius. Yet, CO2 concentration remained steady at around 270 ppm. This contradicts the Global Warming theory. Kher states "there is absolutely no indicator that the Earth is abnormally warm for where it is in the climate cycle."

Illustration 35 on page 63 is one of the many rebuttals of Global Warming theory. We see the Eemian temperature drop abruptly by 10 degree Celsius over a 20,000 year period. Meanwhile, CO2 concentration dropped 8,000 years after the temperature dropped. What drove the change in temperature during the Eemian was not CO2 concentration but insolation at 65N (illustration 43. Pg. 78). Insolation drove both the temperature change and the sea level change during the Eemian interglacial. At one point, sea level dropped by 20 meters in a 5,000 year period. And, CO2 levels had nothing to do with any of the above.

The 100,000 year Milankovitch cycles are associated with long term changes in insolation caused by three different changes in the Earth's orbit and tilt. Those are:

1) Eccentricity. It is the main force. It slightly alters the elliptical shape of the Earth's orbit around the Sun. Thus, it directly affects the variation in insolation. It follows a 100,000 year cycle;

2) Obliquity, the varying angle of the tilt of the Earth (ranges from 21 to 25 degrees). It affects the amount of insulation the Earth receives. It has a 41,000 year cycle; and

3) Precession that determines what season it is when the Earth is closest or farthest from the Sun. One complete precession cycle takes 26,000 years.

The Holocene has a flatter temperature behavior than the Eemian did because of a more moderate insulation pattern on both the way up and down. The Eemian had more pronounced Milankovitch cycles than the Holocene did. Nevertheless, based on those long term Milankovitch cycles the Earth will get colder. 3,000 years ago the insolation anomaly at 65N went negative. And, each 1,000 year period since then has been cooler than the one before. There is no better proof of long term cooling in the NH than the forming of many new glaciers. Even if they are currently retreating (as part of a normal ebb and flow of retreats and advances), the main fact is that the majority of glaciers did not exist 4,000 years ago. And, many of them are forming closer to the Equator. This is typical when entering a very long cooling phase (Milankovitch cycle winter season is by far the longest).

Changes in temperature always precede change in CO2 (instead of the reverse as suggested by Global Warming theory). This is because CO2 water solubility decreases as water warms up. As a result, when insolation warms the oceans; they release CO2 in the atmosphere. Therefore, CO2 concentration rises after the temperature has already risen and not before.

The natural volatility of temperature is very high. Over 55 year period, the temperature standard deviation is 0.59 degree Celsius translating into a + or - 1.18 degree Celsius 95% Confidence Interval. The total variation in the past 160 years has been within less than + or - one single standard deviation. Thus, the current rise in temperature is well within natural variability.

Sea level can rise abruptly in response to insolation that melts the land ice caps. About 20,000 years ago within just a few thousands years sea levels rose by almost 100 meters in response to a rapid change in insolation. None of those events were caused by change in CO2 concentration. As mentioned, the change in CO2 is not a cause but an effect of the related changes in ocean temperatures.

Within chapter 9, Kehr demonstrates on numerous counts why the theory of CO2 driven Global Warming is wrong. The main one is that it does not explain any of the long term temperature history. CO2 levels remained relatively constant through the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and the following Little Ice Age (LIA). Meanwhile, those periods track much more closely the change in insolation. The climatology community instead of looking at the historical evidence has manipulated tree proxy records to flatten out both the MWP and the LIA out of historical record. That is exactly what Michael Mann did to create his famous hockey stick pattern (see page 144). When the current rise in temperature is observed over just the past 2,000 years, the hockey stick pattern is erased by the true historical temperature volatility (pg. 133, 134).

Geography and solar insolation are the driving forces in long term climate changes.

Short term volatile climate changes are caused by several different oscillations in the ocean temperatures. Those include El Nino/La Nina phenomenon (ENSO) that has a short cycle measured yearly. ENSO alone causes a third of the very short term variation in the Earth's temperature. The chart on page 150 shows that the change in ENSO leads rather precisely change in Earth's temperature by 6 months over the observed period (1979 to 2011). Other ocean oscillations are important. The Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) that has a 10 to 20 year cycle and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) that has a 70 year cycle. The warming between 1970 to 2000 is a perfect example of the short term warming that is likely caused by natural variations in the ocean cycles.

CO2 has a negligible impact on temperature. The total Greenhouse Effect (GHE) accounts for 120 watts per square meter of energy transfer that translates into 33 degree Celsius of temperature. Without the GHE, our planet could not support complex life forms. However, over 80% of the GHE is caused by water vapor and evaporation. CO2 accounts for only 3.3 W/m square. And a doubling of CO2 concentration will cause only a 10% increase in the total effect of CO2 or from 3.3 to 3.6 W/m square. This translates into less than a 0.1 degree Celsius change in temperature. Meanwhile, some climatologists suggest that a doubling in CO2 level would cause temperature to rise by up to 6 degree Celsius or more than 60 times what the correct energy transfer calculations dictate.

There is another reason why CO2 has very little impact on climate. It absorbs only a very narrow range of radiation wavelength (between 13 and 16 microns; meanwhile the range in the atmosphere is from 1 to 40. Chart on page 236). And, at current concentration levels CO2 already absorbs close to 100% of the radiation wavelength it could absorb.

The GHE has a strong seasonality. The Earth has the highest GHE while CO2 levels are the lowest (pg. 216). That also contradicts Global Warming.

Another important causal factor in climate change is the Energy Gap the Earth experiences. When the Earth cools, it is not only associated with a Milankovitch cycle decline in insolation, but also a rising energy gap where the Earth is loosing more energy into space. It is measured as outgoing long wave radiation (OLR) energy loss in W/m square. And, it is driven by temperature. The higher the temperature the greater the OLR energy loss. On pg. 262 Kehr shows a linear regression that perfectly fits the historical data between temperature and rising OLR loss or energy gap. This physical phenomenon contributes to explaining the historical swings between the high MWP and the low LIA. Meanwhile, Global Warming does not as CO2 did not change much during those periods.

Both the trend in insolation and energy gap in the current Holocene period match well the ones of the Eemian period at the same point in the cycle. And, they mean only one thing. With both a decline in insolation and a rise in the Energy Gap, our climate temperature over the long term is in a downward trend that started about 3,000 years ago (when insolation anomaly went negative and Energy Gap rose commensurately. See pg 260-261). And, CO2 driven Global warming will have no impact in delaying this long term trend.
20 internautes sur 22 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Essential AGW Read! 13 novembre 2011
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
The author's reason for researching AGW (Anthropogenic Global Warming) could not have hit home any more. I have read many articles on both sides of the AGW story, and found that there is good information and reasoning on both sides while both also have misinformation. My eventual conclusion left me apathetic to the entire subject and I concluded the feedback models used to show eminent catastrophic problems must be wrong and that less dependence on fossil fuel is a good thing regardless of AGW.

The first half of the book is a must read for anybody interested in the AGW debate as it explains better than any single source why the earth's climate changes. This seems to be the missing piece from most skeptical AGW arguments. While my delving into the AGW debate might not have been too thorough before apathy set it, the difference in understanding the earths climate and saying "the earths climate changes, deal with it" seems significant. This book is defiantly the best single source for understanding the earth's climate.

The second half is of course VERY good at describing why somebody would have very good reason to be skeptical of AGW. Once again, the conclusions here have a similar feel to what I have read elsewhere, but the explanation and scientific sections were like a light turning on in my head. It is the difference between watching an infomercial and saying to yourself "that seems like a good deal, but what is the catch" to "I understand the deal and the limitations, now is this something I really need."
19 internautes sur 23 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent - very professional 23 novembre 2011
Par Richard Carpenter - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
This book and its author have not yet attracted any hateful smears or personal attacks. Other "deniers" have, usually from trolls who have not read the book other than snippets from the preview here on Amazon. Perhaps the trolls are not up to the task of trashing this book. It is difficult reading, appropriate for an introductory college course on the subject. It is heavy on facts and technical explanations, complete with diagrams and graphs. It is just what we would expect from an engineer, which the author is by profession. The first half of the book explains the "Climate Cycle" or, as most of us know it, the ice age cycle. It is also called the Milankovitch Cycle after the man who first explained it. It is caused not by CO2 or other greenhouse gasses, but by approximately 100,000 year cycles in the earth's orbit around the sun. Consider a spinning top or toy gyroscope; in addition to its smooth "orbit" we can see wobbles. Such wobbles in the earth's orbit result in more or less solar energy reaching the earth; the technical term is "insolation." The author points out that we are actually in a cooling period, going into another ice age. Of course, the trend one sees depends on the time interval one studies. Sure, over the last 200 years there has been a slight warming trend. However, next to the 100,000 year ice age cycle 200 years is rather insignificant. "Oh, but if present trends continue...." Present trends will NOT continue because the strongest trend of them all is the ice age cycle; we are not just on the cliff, we are over the cliff falling down into another ice age. The author is too serious and too professional to say so, but go ahead and drive your SUV. Let's build all the coal-fired electric plants we can. We will NEED a good greenhouse gas in the millennia to come. Actually, the second half of the book shows that CO2 is not even much of a greenhouse gas anyway. Water vapor has about six times the greenhouse effect that CO2 does in the present atmosphere. The global warming theorists claim positive feedback. That is, a slight increase in CO2 will warm the atmosphere a bit; that warming will put more water vapor into the atmosphere, causing further warming. At some "tipping point" the warming supposedly becomes irreversible. Except it did not happen. Remember, there have been many ice age cycles. The warming cycles between ice ages have never prevented a subsequent ice age. What about CO2? Well, CO2 concentration in the atmosphere FOLLOWS temperature. That is, temperature goes up, FOLLOWED by CO2. That observation argues against human-caused or "anthropogenic global warming" or AGW. The author is willing to concede maybe a degree of global warming over the last hundred years, as long as we keep it in proper perspective next to the coming ice age. Not that it should need saying but ice ages, with a mile of ice over Canada and the northern US, are much less pleasant than global warming. One suspects that if the ice age cycle finds its way into academic conversation the "solution" to the coming ice age will be exactly the same as the "solution" to AGW. That is, let's give up modern technological society. We who do not buy it are called "deniers" after "Holocaust Deniers" who are sent to prison in many countries. It was said of Stalin and his henchmen that they aimed their arguments not at your mind but at your skull. The same could be said of all totalitarians. It is easy to imagine that the global warming crowd would answer this author and others like him with the same skull-based "arguments" if only they had the power. Global warmers tell us "the science is settled..." The science is "settled" in the same sense that kidnapping settles child custody. The science is hijacked and being held hostage. None of the arguments in this book could be made in any of the "peer reviewed" journals controlled by the warmers. Even the ice age cycle, believe it or not, is explained away by CO2. Academic fraud is alive and well, as alive and well as financial fraud on Wall Street.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Its all over for anthropogenic global warming, aka "Al Gore" Warming 15 février 2013
Par reasonablewoman - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
This is a book written by an engineer. He tackles all of the data and makes what I think is a compelling case for stopping the madness that is the belief that we have altered our climate to the point that requires very expensive measures to not produce CO2. I have a B.A. in Environmental Science from a good school. When I graduated in the late '70s, the words "global warming" had yet to be uttered. I know what courses I took, and I recognized that an understanding of global warming would not be possible without a thorough grounding in physics and chemistry. Frankly, I doubt that "climate scientists," in the main, have the scientific heft to understand what is going on. Anyone can make a computer model, but as they say, garbage in, garbage out. With a book like this, I don't think it will be much longer until the theory of anthropogenic global warming is put to rest. The most that can be expected in the way of warming, about 1 degree Celsius, is the same as the natural variation in the temperature.

I was very favorably impressed by this book, and I hope it is widely read and discussed. The political correctness has to be removed from the discussion. Politicians and businessmen with tax credits are building wind turbines that are killing birds and bats, and they are cutting down forests to put up solar panels. It is time to take a look at the toll on the Chinese land and air where they mine and manufacture these things. If we think we are doing the planet a favor, we are fooling ourselves.
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