Shaviv and Miskolczi 36


Nir’s 2005 paper “On climate response to changes in the cosmic ray flux and radiative budget”, available as pdf here, provides a solid case linking cosmic ray flux (CRF) variations to global climate change. The effect is consistent over hugely different timescales, using completely different indicators — from cosmic sources of CRF at the Phanerozoic, to the shortest time scale of the 11-yr solar cycle. The fit is extraordinary. The statistics competent. The bottom line?

Thus, anthropogenic sources alone contributed to a warming of 0.14 ± 0.36 K since the beginning of the 20th Century. Using our estimate, we find Tsolar = 0.47 ± 0.19 K. We therefore find that the combined solar and anthropogenic sources were responsible for an increase of 0.61 ± 0.42 K. This should be compared with the observed 0.57 ± 0.17 K increase in global surface temperature [IPCC, 2001].

In other words, changes in solar forcing, amplified by changes in cloud albedo due to CRF variations, account for a whopping 80% of the temperature increase seen since 1900. The rest, 20%, can be attributed to AGW.

I thought it would be interesting to see if Shaviv’s theory fits together with Miskolczi’s. Miskolczi’s is a theory of constant optical IR depth for the atmosphere, a consequence being that fluctuations in climate mostly come about through changes in solar forcing, i.e. short wave SW in, not effects of IR absorbers on long wave out. Even if you are not happy with all aspects of his theory, I want to look at it from the point of view of a theory explaining why IR absorbers like CO2 might not have as a strong an effect on global temperature as the IPCC scientists assert.

Shaviv explains that the CRF variations bring about changes in the % cover of low altitude clouds (LACC), changing the optical depth for both IR and SW. However, the effects are not equal.

This result is also reasonable considering that the total long wavelength heating effect of LACC was estimated to be 3.5Wm−2 [Hartmann et al., 1992], while cloud albedo is responsible for a globally averaged cooling of 20Wm−2, implying that changes in albedo will likely be more important for changing the radiative budget arising from LACC variations.

That is, by far the greatest effect of variations in LACC are on the SW, reflecting more sunlight away when cloud cover increases, thus shading and reducing the solar isolation at the surface. So while Miskolczi says global warming can’t be due to long wave variation, because the system optimizes for stability at that wavelength, Shaviv says there is a variation in solar input, amplified 5 to 7 times by cloud cover, and it explains temperature variation far better than GHG’s across all known time scales.

The two theories are both consistent and complementary, providing the strongest basis so far, for a natural and not human explanation for global warming.

  • pochas

    As a matter of interest, this is posted on Nir Shaviv’s website.

    http://sciencebits.com/OnClimateSensitivity

    From his summary:

    “Climate Sensitivity can be estimated empirically. A relatively low value (one which corresponds to net cancelation of the feedbacks) is obtained.”

    What I think this is saying is that if the effects of cosmic rays are removed the earth acts like a greybody, with some small wiggle room left for AGW. In his recent paper which I have not read he apparently demurs on cosmic rays, probably as an expedient to getting published.

    Lindzen also says the feedbacks cancel(feedback factor of -1.1 on temperature in the tropics due to the iris effect), and Miskolczi’s constant tau amounts to an assertion of the same thing, though neither makes cosmic rays an issue.

    http://www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/adinfriris.pdf

  • pochas

    As a matter of interest, this is posted on Nir Shaviv’s website.

    http://sciencebits.com/OnClimateSensitivity

    From his summary:

    “Climate Sensitivity can be estimated empirically. A relatively low value (one which corresponds to net cancelation of the feedbacks) is obtained.”

    What I think this is saying is that if the effects of cosmic rays are removed the earth acts like a greybody, with some small wiggle room left for AGW. In his recent paper which I have not read he apparently demurs on cosmic rays, probably as an expedient to getting published.

    Lindzen also says the feedbacks cancel(feedback factor of -1.1 on temperature in the tropics due to the iris effect), and Miskolczi’s constant tau amounts to an assertion of the same thing, though neither makes cosmic rays an issue.

    http://www-eaps.mit.edu/faculty/lindzen/adinfriris.pdf

  • Anonymous

    “though neither makes cosmic rays an issue.” because this is SW forcing and they are experts on the IR side. They explain why CO2 effect is not larger, but leave open what causes climate change. CRF’s explain why climate changes, but not why CO2 is not a strong effect. Together, it all falls into place.

  • http://landshape.org/enm admin

    “though neither makes cosmic rays an issue.” because this is SW forcing and they are experts on the IR side. They explain why CO2 effect is not larger, but leave open what causes climate change. CRF’s explain why climate changes, but not why CO2 is not a strong effect. Together, it all falls into place.

  • jae

    I’ve been a fan of Shaviv’s for several years, and think his hypothesis makes good sense. It seems to me that if gases, such as CO2 could have significant effects, the Earth would have spun out of control long before now. And I think it’s getting quite clear from the empirical data that CO2 doesn’t have much effect. Anyway, FWIW, I agree with David’s post.

  • jae

    I’ve been a fan of Shaviv’s for several years, and think his hypothesis makes good sense. It seems to me that if gases, such as CO2 could have significant effects, the Earth would have spun out of control long before now. And I think it’s getting quite clear from the empirical data that CO2 doesn’t have much effect. Anyway, FWIW, I agree with David’s post.

  • jae

    pochas:

    “In his recent paper which I have not read he apparently demurs on cosmic rays, probably as an expedient to getting published.”

    ??. He still agrees with the cosmic ray theory. See Lubos Motl’s current post.

  • jae

    pochas:

    “In his recent paper which I have not read he apparently demurs on cosmic rays, probably as an expedient to getting published.”

    ??. He still agrees with the cosmic ray theory. See Lubos Motl’s current post.

  • jae

    OK, pochas, I guess I see what you mean. It looks like Shaviv says something to the effect that there is a “mostly unknown solar mechanism,” so maybe he’s not necessarily attributing it to cosmic rays.

  • jae

    OK, pochas, I guess I see what you mean. It looks like Shaviv says something to the effect that there is a “mostly unknown solar mechanism,” so maybe he’s not necessarily attributing it to cosmic rays.

  • jae

    I think Spencer’s thoughts are compatable with those of Miskolczi and Shaviv, also: http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/02/what-about-the-clouds-andy/

  • jae

    I think Spencer’s thoughts are compatable with those of Miskolczi and Shaviv, also: http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/02/what-about-the-clouds-andy/

  • Anonymous

    The thing that I find so compelling is that I have an intuitive sense that IR effects, being essentially dissipative, are unlikely to be control factors. Probably MEP could be substituted in here, I don’t know enough about it, but because you are just dumping waste heat, there are going to be all sorts of low energy spreading out, and parallel paths, that suggest one tiny gas is not going to act as a bottleneck in the system. However, the incoming higher energies can be tweaked and blocked. Perhaps the image I have in my mind is of a pipeline, where variable flows are inputting, getting smoothed on the way out.

  • http://landshape.org/enm admin

    The thing that I find so compelling is that I have an intuitive sense that IR effects, being essentially dissipative, are unlikely to be control factors. Probably MEP could be substituted in here, I don’t know enough about it, but because you are just dumping waste heat, there are going to be all sorts of low energy spreading out, and parallel paths, that suggest one tiny gas is not going to act as a bottleneck in the system. However, the incoming higher energies can be tweaked and blocked. Perhaps the image I have in my mind is of a pipeline, where variable flows are inputting, getting smoothed on the way out.

  • Anonymous

    5: Yes he has been coy. I would like to read the latest paper (hint).

  • http://landshape.org/enm admin

    5: Yes he has been coy. I would like to read the latest paper (hint).

  • jan pompe

    David #7

    The thing that I find so compelling is that I have an intuitive sense that IR effects, being essentially dissipative, are unlikely to be control factors.

    I agree here and the SW/GCR interaction is not a passive, dissipative one that gain or feedback swims against thermodynamic currents (2nd law) like the IR effects. It actually inverts the GCR signal and amplifies that i.e. gain and perhaps even a little positive feedback with phase shifting is possible there.

  • jan pompe

    David #7

    The thing that I find so compelling is that I have an intuitive sense that IR effects, being essentially dissipative, are unlikely to be control factors.

    I agree here and the SW/GCR interaction is not a passive, dissipative one that gain or feedback swims against thermodynamic currents (2nd law) like the IR effects. It actually inverts the GCR signal and amplifies that i.e. gain and perhaps even a little positive feedback with phase shifting is possible there.

  • Nick Stokes

    Shaviv is quite explicit about the contribution of cosmic rays. Fig 2 shows 2 plots, with and without. He gets a climate sensitivity without CRF of 2 K/2xC)2, which is toward the lower end of the IPCC range, and 1.3 K/2xC)2 with CRF, which is just below the IPCC range. I think these figures are higher than he has previously stated, and not really headline sceptic numbers.

    Incidentally, jae, Nir uses the factor 4 w/m2/2xCO2 everywhere, without exp[licitly stating, and like Soden, without saying where he gets it. See for example where he translates 0.3 K/(W/m2) to 1.2 K/2xCO2.

  • Nick Stokes

    Shaviv is quite explicit about the contribution of cosmic rays. Fig 2 shows 2 plots, with and without. He gets a climate sensitivity without CRF of 2 K/2xC)2, which is toward the lower end of the IPCC range, and 1.3 K/2xC)2 with CRF, which is just below the IPCC range. I think these figures are higher than he has previously stated, and not really headline sceptic numbers.

    Incidentally, jae, Nir uses the factor 4 w/m2/2xCO2 everywhere, without exp[licitly stating, and like Soden, without saying where he gets it. See for example where he translates 0.3 K/(W/m2) to 1.2 K/2xCO2.

  • Anonymous

    Nick – Nir from the paper S05 discussed in this post, page 4:

    For the effect of a doubled CO2 concentration, we take F×2 = 3.71Wm−2 [Myhre et al., 1998].

    From S05 it seems CO2 sensitivity is estimated from the residual variation not explained by CRF, or elsewhere assumed, or deduced from an upper limit where no correlation is observed i.e. the Phanerozoic.

    Shaviv and Veizer [2003] have shown that more than 2/3’s
    of the variance in the reconstructed tropical temperature
    variability Ttrop over the Phanerozoic can be explained
    using the variable CRF, which could be reconstructed using
    Iron meteorites. On the other hand, it was shown that the
    reconstructed atmospheric CO2 variations do not appear to
    have any clear correlation with the reconstructed temperature.

    I suspect the difference of 2 vs 1.3 indicate what would normally be attributed to feedbacks in conventional studies. Though I am not sure. SO4 is a dense and tightly argued paper, and correlative studies use a lot of guesswork by necessity.

  • http://landshape.org/enm admin

    Nick – Nir from the paper S05 discussed in this post, page 4:

    For the effect of a doubled CO2 concentration, we take F×2 = 3.71Wm−2 [Myhre et al., 1998].

    From S05 it seems CO2 sensitivity is estimated from the residual variation not explained by CRF, or elsewhere assumed, or deduced from an upper limit where no correlation is observed i.e. the Phanerozoic.

    Shaviv and Veizer [2003] have shown that more than 2/3’s
    of the variance in the reconstructed tropical temperature
    variability Ttrop over the Phanerozoic can be explained
    using the variable CRF, which could be reconstructed using
    Iron meteorites. On the other hand, it was shown that the
    reconstructed atmospheric CO2 variations do not appear to
    have any clear correlation with the reconstructed temperature.

    I suspect the difference of 2 vs 1.3 indicate what would normally be attributed to feedbacks in conventional studies. Though I am not sure. SO4 is a dense and tightly argued paper, and correlative studies use a lot of guesswork by necessity.

  • Nick Stokes

    David,
    Thanks for that Myrhe link – it reminded me that yes, that is the widely cited source, so I guess Soden used it too. It seems his website is using the S05 figures.

  • Nick Stokes

    David,
    Thanks for that Myrhe link – it reminded me that yes, that is the widely cited source, so I guess Soden used it too. It seems his website is using the S05 figures.

  • jae

    Nick:

    “Incidentally, jae, Nir uses the factor 4 w/m2/2xCO2 everywhere, without exp[licitly stating, and like Soden, without saying where he gets it. See for example where he translates 0.3 K/(W/m2) to 1.2 K/2xCO2.”

    Nick, I was asking you (somewhere) where Soden got the 0.4 Beta feedback number, not the 4 wm-2 number.

  • jae

    Nick:

    “Incidentally, jae, Nir uses the factor 4 w/m2/2xCO2 everywhere, without exp[licitly stating, and like Soden, without saying where he gets it. See for example where he translates 0.3 K/(W/m2) to 1.2 K/2xCO2.”

    Nick, I was asking you (somewhere) where Soden got the 0.4 Beta feedback number, not the 4 wm-2 number.

  • jae
  • jae
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