Posted by: graemebird | November 26, 2006

Its The Oceans Stupid

They say that our most important greenhouse gas is water vapour
Or at least they do now. Now that some sort of skepticism has broken through the alarmist wall-of-sound.

I suggesst however that its water in its liquid form that is our greatest greenhouse ‘gas’.

Well of course water isn’t a gas.

But why, heretofore, has the talk mostly only been about greenhouse gasses?

I think the idea of earths greenhouse effect has been historically fleshed out with reference to the other planets in the solar system. And our planet is the only planet wherein water exists in liquid form on the surface.

So the talk is all ‘greenhouse gasses’ this and ‘greenhouse gasses’ that.

But the tendency to be one-eye-blind towards water in liquid-form is probably not very useful.


Of course I recognise this is a vast oversimplification.

But the plan behind all of these small pieces is to just shift peoples perspective enough for them to recognise the mono-mania and presumption of the alarmist climate-science-workers and their various bully-boy supporters.

Is 20m above sea level really the right standard? Is the average temperature of the air the first 5,000 feet over the land-(only) REALLY the right standard from which to base our calculations on?


I have a concept of my own called “delta-joules”. This is a hard thing to talk about because you are really only describing about an hypothetical difference in joules given a hypothetical change in conditions independent from anything else.

The problem with basing everything on average temperature of the lower troposphere is that a proportion of any extra joules hanging round might not make it through the night.

Out of those that do many won’t make it through the winter.

Of the joules left over many of them won’t make it through the next weaker-then-usual 11 year solar cycle. And even surviving underwater that long isn’t good enough for global warming.

The North-Brazil current pushes up into the Gulf-Stream and gets as far as the South Labrador Sea.

There it starts going-down. And it winds up in a complementary current deep in the ocean. And this current travels a long way back in the other direction.

In fact it travels all the way to the Northern Coast of Antarctica and then splits up and joins one of two currents in the Great Ocean Conveyer Belt.


1. Does the volume and velocity change at all the down-welling areas on the planet? (well yes I’m pretty sure it does.)

2. Does the temperature of the down-welling water change (I suspect it does but do not know for sure and have no data)

3. And what are the implications for the transfer of energy into the depths of the ocean of an increase/decrease of temperature/volume/velocity?

I have no figures for you but some proportion of extra energy that winds up down there from some sort of abnormal change (lets say an abnormally strong solar cycle) might well stay on past the next “down” solar-cycle.

And you would think it is this ability for extra energy to be held over, past a number of different solar cycles, past any up and down cycle of momentum of the Gulf stream…..

…One would think that THIS is what you would need for global warming. And it is what is happening in the deeper oceans and perhaps the lower end of the photic-zone that would give you the best indication of how trends were working for us.

A large lake may be warmer then the surrounding land in winter and cooler then the surrounding land in summer.

Oceans, because of the various currents in them, might be harder to gage in terms of a simple trend in temperatures.

Nonetheless if one was a science-worker trying to see what all this panic and calls for other peoples cash is all about one would try and find oceanic temperature averages which related well to prior solar radiation and to subsequent higher air temperatures……. higher then what the immediate solar radiation would suggest.

But one isn’t likely to follow this up if one is getting all anally-retentive about industrial-CO2.



  1. You must love the Argo system of floating ocean robots taking all those measurements.

  2. Right.

    Show me the data-base!

    And don’t tease me about not knowing about the Argonauts.

    I’m grappling with this from the ground up.

    By the way I have to take a backward concession on the realclimate is not real climate thread.

    Because Gavin updated with another link that supported his argument much better.

    But I just assume that Lambert and other communists are fucking with my computer.

    And fucking with my forum and the forums I spend most of my time with.

    Thats my working assumption until proven otherwise.

    So I’ll blame fatty-Lambert and my work situation for me not doing the post-script acknowledging the better evidence already.

  3. This link explains about the Argo data and how to get it:-

    The following is from another part of the same website and gives the technical overview of the project:-

    Argo Floats

    Argo is an international collaboration that collects high-quality temperature and salinity profiles from the upper 2000m of the ice-free global ocean and currents from intermediate depths. The data come from battery-powered autonomous floats that spend most of their life drifting at depth where they are stabilised by being neutrally buoyant at the “parking depth” pressure by having a density equal to the ambient pressure and a compressibility that is less than that of sea water. At present there are three models of profiling float used extensively in Argo. All work in a similar fashion but differ somewhat in their design characteristics. At typically 10-day intervals, the floats pump fluid into an external bladder and rise to the surface over about 6 hours while measuring temperature and salinity. Satellites determine the position of the floats when they surface, and receive the data transmitted by the floats. The bladder then deflates and the float returns to its original density and sinks to drift until the cycle is repeated. Floats are designed to make about 150 such cycles.

    There are about 2500 of these floats currently active with 3000 planned. The system has been operating for about 3 years now and so far it seems to have shown that over the last 2 years the oceans have cooled quite considerably. In Australia the CSIRO has had a pretty big involvement in the global scheme.

    I think Argo and the Ocean temperature data it yields will be pretty key to this whole debate.

  4. Here is what Realclimate said about the ocean cooling revealed by the Argo data:-

  5. “Given some of the ongoing discussion, it obviously still needs to be pointed out that year-to-year fluctuations in any of the key metrics of planet’s climate are mostly a function of the weather and cannot be expected to be captured in climate models, whose ‘weather’ is uncorrelated with that in the real world. So claims that two years worth of extra data of any quantity somehow prove or disprove climate models are simply erroneous. Clearly, life would be simpler without weather ‘noise’ cluttering up the system, but this is something that just needs to be dealt with.”

    Do you see their non-ocean focus. Here is this potentially MASSIVE loss of energy from the system but the dude thinks its unimportant. And makes excuses for the models which don’t work in the first place.

    A massive presumed loss of energy from the system becomes ‘THE WEATHER’

    They are absolute lunatic ideologues over there.

    Now this might be a natural deal that happens at the trough of the solar cycle. This might happen when the Gulf stream and other currents have been running stronger then usual for a long period of time.

    But if there wasn’t these potential cyclical explanations we would have great cause for concern.

  6. I’m not disagreeing with you (necessarily).

  7. Right.

    Well the thing is this.

    It has to be cyclical to do with a trough in THIS solar cycle and due to cycle 23 being somewhat weaker then average…..

    And/Or some mix-up in the data could be involved. In that the cooling is from 2003 in a strong way and that co-incides with the better data-collection system.

    And/Or… and I think this is most likely….. The cooling migh come when the ocean currents have been moving water poleward at their highest momentum for the longest time and the momentum is about to drop back or slow down.

    Now this would be paradoxical. Because in terms of the heat budget greater water moving Poleward would increase the joules that could be retained in the system.

    But if the Gulfstream (for example) had peaked and had moved all that water northward and now was slowing down, and this came with a trough in the last solar cycle (a somewhat weak one in the first place) then though this behaviour (high momentum of warm water moving poleward) would help enhance the long-term energy budget….. The hangover could be all this cold water.

    But dig this.

    If this is none of the above we are in powerful trouble. And the only thing that could bail us out would be that solar cycle 24 is a super-big one. As some experts are now predicting for the first time n 2006.

    Because there has to be more energy stored in the top 5 or 15 metres of water then in the entire atomosphere.

    I’d be interested if you had any information on that.

    So if its not any of the above we are pretty rooted.

    And so its quite moronic of these guys to be talking about ‘the weather’.

    You know I’m talking about this cycle 23 being ‘somewhat weaker’.

    But I don’t know that for sure.

    I’ve seen graphs of the sunspots with correlates roughly with strength of the cycle but is not the same thing. And I’ve read people SAY what I just said about cycle 23. (weaker then 22 and 21, Stronger then 20, and 19 the strongest on record.)

    Because they give 15 billion to the tax-eaters for this shit world-wide and yet I find it hard to track down a graph of solar irradiance.

    And I would think I should be able to track down a graph of UVA, UVB, UVC graph and so forth.

    We are not getting a lot for our money.

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