Needed:  A National Paradigm Shift

A paradigm is a widely accepted belief or concept based on a set of assumptions. The current global warming (climate change) paradigm in the United States, persistently aired by the media, relentlessly pushed by progressive politicians (recently by President Biden), pervasively taught in public schools and universities and accepted as reality by many in the United States, is the belief, primarily based on assumptions and climate model projections using subjective inputs, that:

(1) The United States, by sharply decreasing its CO2 emissions, will avert an existential climate crisis.

Imbedded in and forming the basis of this paradigm are two other paradigms, also based on assumptions, not verified by facts, that are widely accepted as true, are:

(2) That CO2 is the main / primary driver of the global warming currently being experienced and,

(3) That reducing / cutting / eliminating human produced CO2 emissions will control / eliminate the global warming being experienced.

A “Paradigm Shift” occurs when one gains knowledge and factual information that invalidates the assumptions of the existing paradigm.   One of the most famous paradigm shifts resulted from Copernicus’s findings, based on his astronomical calculations, that the Earth revolved around the Sun rather than the widely accepted belief in his time, that the Sun revolved around the Earth.  Copernicus’s work and the factual proof was not published until he was on his deathbed because he was afraid of the potential consequences.  Even then his book was banned by the Catholic church and remained banned for almost three hundred years before the “incorrect paradigm” was shifted to the truth.  We do not have three hundred years to shift the above paradigms. Debilitating policies based on these invalid assumptions are already in the works and severely cripplingly climate change “mandates” could be imposed in the near future.

 We, the American people, as well as the rest of the world, urgently need to experience paradigm shifts that will prevent potential devastating consequences that would result from the impending formulation, imposition and enforcement of ill founded, misguided polices, restrictions and controls on CO2 emissions.  Readily available facts* and information clearly refute each of the existing paradigms cited above.

  *on Wikipedia for example

First Paradigm to shift

Let’s examine the first paradigm in need of shifting – i.e. – The general belief of the populous – based on statements, assertions, and declarations from the IPCC, the main stream media, environmental groups and most recently by the United States Government, that: —–The United States by drastically cutting its CO2 emissions will avert an existential climate crisis. (Biden’s announced plan is to cut United States CO2 emissions by 50-52% of their 2005 levels by 2030.)

Yes, there is ongoing global warming. The current, interglacial, cycle of warming began around 1750 when global temperatures of the “Little Ice Age” reached their minimums.  Yes, the burning of fossil fuels pollutes the air, putting carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and hydrocarbon particulates in the air. And the oceans are being fouled with plastic waste. Some actions to address these realities have been taken but more can and should be done. However, these environmental needs are barely attended to with all the attention on reducing CO2 emissions.

But, is it true that — drastically cutting United States CO2 emissions will really avert a climate crisis? Here are some relevant facts and information that answer that question and hopefully can, with broad dissemination, nationally shift this first paradigm which focuses on the United States response and ability to allay the purported climate crisis.

(1) In 2018, the US produced 14% of the total annual worldwide CO2 emissions, a total of 4,800 MMT (million metric tons). The US has been cutting their CO2 emissions since 2000. The United States now emits less CO2 than it did in 1990, when calls for CO2 reduction began. The use of natural gas in lieu of coal has made the greatest contribution to this reduction in United States CO2 emissions.

(2) But, while the US has been cutting CO2 emissions, most countries since 1990 (see Figure 1) have been steadily increasing their CO2 emissions, some greatly so. For example, China’s CO2 emissions rose from 2,397MT to 10,313MT (1990 to 2018), a 430% increase. China’s per capita CO2 emissions also grew, increasing by 533% from 1980 to 2018. As can be seen by examining the graph , most countries (other than the US and the EU) have roughly doubled their emissions. Developing countries, as expected, are just beginning to ramp up their CO2 emissions.

(3) In contrast to China and most other countries, the US and the EU have cut per capita emissions. US per capita CO2 emissions have declined by 22.5% since 1980.

(4) From an overall outlook, that really puts the situation in perspective, worldwide annual CO2 emissions from 1990 to 2018 increased 164%, (from 22,000 MMT to 36,000 MMT). The US did not contribute at all to that 164% increase, actually, the US helped it from being an even greater increase.   Most importantly, with respect to the implication of the “critical role” and importance attached to what the US must do, is that: Even if the US had produced zero CO2 emissions in 2018, there still would have been a worldwide increase of 141% in carbon dioxide emissions between 1990 and 2018.**  So it is evident that:

What the US has done to cut carbon dioxide emissions (emissions in 2018 were cut by 20% over 2005 levels), is continuing to do (the United States achieved the largest absolute reduction in carbon dioxide emissions of any country in 2019 – IEA), and is being tasked to do over the next 8 years (meet the objective of a 50-52% cut in emissions by 2030) would hardly make a ripple in the essentially unabated, continuing increase in world-wide carbon dioxide emissions. The steady increase in worldwide CO2 emissions is clearly displayed in Figure 1.

Figure 1 – CO2 Emissions by Major Economies and by Region, Source –Our World in Data

**(An example of the fallacy, and inconsistency in implying that US actions are able to reduce overall global CO2 emissions was the Biden Administration’s shutting down the US Keystone pipeline construction, ostensibly to reduce fossil fuel consumption, and then (1) lifting the sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 Russian oil pipeline delivering oil to Germany and (2) asking OPEC to increase its oil production to help reduce gas prices (that immediately rose when the US Keystone pipeline was shut down).

So as is evident from Figure 1 and the statistics presented above, that:

Despite the IPCC warnings to reduce CO2 emissions since 1990 – AND

Despite the periodic “climate accords” among nations,

The annual rate of increase of CO2 emissions has essentially continued unabated.

So, if indeed CO2 emissions presented an existential threat to the planet, the pleas and plans for the United States to drastically reduce CO2 emissions would not even come close to dealing with that threat.

Thus, the looming plans to impose CO2 emission restrictions on the people of the United States and the impassioned pleas for cutting US CO2 emissions based on fears of a doomed planet and our children’s futures, with inference that such cuts, by the people of the United States, will avert a climate crisis, are disingenuous, misleading, and raise false hopes.  It is clear from the data and from the evident lack of worldwide response that such actions would be unproductive and ineffective and would uselessly impose great suffering and undue burdens on Americans.  It is evident that this first paradigm: “The United States, by drastically cutting CO2, will avert a climate crisis.”, should “shift” to the now informed understanding that if indeed CO2 emissions were producing global warming and an impending crisis: 

The NEW PADIGIGM should be:

Imposing harsh CO2 emission controls on the US would not avert a “climate crisis” even if the US cut its CO2 emissions to zero.,

So, the answer to the question: Will drastically cutting United States CO2 emissions really avert a climate crisis?” is NO IT WON’T !!!, because based on the evidence, the rest of the world’s CO2 emissions will continue to rise more than making up for the US declining contribution. For example, China plans on continuing to increase emissions, (ostensibly reaching a peak in 2030), and developing countries, [i.e. in Africa, etc.] are in the CO2 emissions expansion stage as would be expected as they are indeed “developing” countries.   

The above paradigm shift does not imply that we should stop reducing our fossil fuel emissions, because they indeed produce air pollution. The US action to reduce emissions has been great and helps set an example to the world. The point is to correct the widely held misconception that our (the US ) actions can effect a “substantive change” and to avoid imposition of draconic measures in the US to achieve that alleged change.

Does it seem hopeless? Will worldwide CO2 emissions result in fulfilling the claimed “existential threat” (of ending our very existence).   Good News! – It isn’t hopeless.   Because that emphasized if, indicated above, is a really big IF.  Recall there are two more Paradigms to shift, namely:

(2) That CO2 is a main/primary driver of the global warming being experienced and,

(3) That reducing / cutting / eliminating CO2 emissions will control / eliminate global warming.

Second Paradigm to Shift

The examination of the second paradigm uses the actual empirical global temperature data record and the record of C02 emissions over more than 100 years. These data are readily available and provide the basis for shifting the second paradigm. Simply by juxtaposing the NASA global temperature data and the CO2 emissions data since 1880, clearly illustrates that CO2 is not the main driver of global warming. These data, as explained below, refute Paradigm 2 and the corollary to that finding refutes Paradigm 3, (i.e.  if CO2 emissions are not the primary cause of global warming, eliminating them will not stop the currently ongoing global warming cycle that began in 1750 (as the natural variation will still be controlling).  Here are the key, relevant graphs of empirical data that allow Paradigm 2 to be refuted.

Figure 2 – NASA global surface temperature data plot– (NASA Headquarters release No. 12-020 – now archived)

Figure 3 – Global Carbon Dioxide Emissions, 1850–2030 – Source – Center for Climate and Energy

It can be seen in Figure 3 that annual worldwide CO2 emissions slowly and gradually increased from 1850 to around 1945. They started to rise sharply around 1945. Since then, the annual rate of increase has essentially continued at nearly the same rate of rise. Interestingly, and very relevant with respect to determining whether CO2 drives global warming, Figure 2 shows that beginning about 1945 and continuing through 1978, precisely the period that CO2 emissions were rapidly increasing, global temperatures decreased.  There was no increase in global warming due to that significant and rapid rise in annual CO2 emissions and the attendant atmospheric accumulation that resulted from them. That is the science! The real empirical, factual, science that has been ignored by the climate alarmists. Global temperatures over the entire period from 1945-1978 were lower than they were in 1944 despite sharply, continuously increasing CO2 emissions.  Global cooling, rather than global warming, occurred during a 4-fold increase in annual carbon emissions, from 5000 MMT to 20,000 MMT during that period.  Natural climate / temperature controlling parameters, other than CO2 emissions, produced this 34-year period of lower global temperatures, just as they had produced lower global temperatures from roughly 1900 to 1910 (see figure 2) and higher temperatures (global warming) from 1917 to 1944.

Now, as can be seen in figures 2 and 3, around 1979 global temperatures began to rise above the 1944 level while CO2 emissions continued to increase at roughly the same annual rate. Global temperatures increased relatively rapidly post 1978. So it can be seen that there were two periods (1944-1978) and (1979-1998) with similarly increasing carbon emission rates, but two distinctly different global temperature responses. However, the post 1979 increase was attributed to the CO2 emissions, essentially on the basis that both temperature and emissions were increasing concurrently and that CO2 is a greenhouse gas (albeit a minor one). The previous period during which the opposite effect was observed is overlooked or intentionally ignored in attributing the post 1979 global warming to the effect of CO2 emissions.

There is more empirical data evident in these graphs to clearly discredit the CO2 emissions / global warming correlation. Look at the period 1917 to 1944 on each graph compared to the period 1979 to 1998. The data reveal another empirical record comparison which refutes the correlation of CO2 emissions with global temperature rise.  During the period 1917 to 1944, carbon emissions were quite low. Emissions were yet to be significant and were undergoing little change from year to year. By contrast global temperatures rose sharply during that period. In fact, the annual rate of global temperature rise during that period (1917-1944 -see Table 1), with small carbon dioxide emissions, matches the rate of global temperature rise experienced during the 1979 to 1998 period.  The latter period experienced 5 times greater annual carbon dioxide emissions.  Two time periods, experiencing extremely different CO2 annual emissions as well as atmospheric CO2 concentrations, having nearly identical global warming rates of rise, clearly discredits a finding of any significant influence of CO2 emissions and supports the concept that the natural variations producing warming were apparently similar and were controlling. Notably, the rate of rise in global temperatures post 1979 (which as was shown is similar to the post 1917 rate of rise) was an important contributing factor to the global warming CO2 emissions “alarm” raised post 1979 on the heels of the “global cooling” predictions and alarms that were sounded just a few years prior.   

Table 1 – Change in global warming vs cumulative amount of CO2 emitted (1917-2015) in Million Metric Tons -MMT

   Period           CO2 emitted        CO2 emitted in        Accumulated CO2   Temp. change   Temp. rise /

                        Annually – MMT   the period MMT      emissions MMT          + or –                  year  

1917-1944       3,500 -5000              114,750                      114,750              + 0.68 deg C      +0.025

1944-1979       5,000-20,000           287,500                      402,205                – 0.05 deg C

1979-1998      20,000-24,000          462,000                      864,205               + 0.47 deg C       +0.025

1998-2013      24,000-32,000          420,000                   1,284,000               – 0.06 deg C

1998 -2015     24,000-32,000          476,000                   1,350,000              – 0.30 deg C   UAH satellite data

The conclusion, based on the actual empirical data presented above, which shows no consistent, discernable correlation between annual CO2 emissions and global temperatures, is very clear, namely that the current second paradigm that “CO2 is driving global warming and climate change”, should undergo a Paradigm Shift to:  New Second Paradigm:

********** CO2 is not a main driver of the global warming currently being experienced. ***********

The atmospheric concentration of CO2 is believed to be critically important in warming the planet, up to an atmospheric concentration of CO2 of about 180 ppm. It is a fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas and thus it makes sense that some contribution to global warming is ongoing from the great increase in CO2 emissions.  However, at the larger concentrations existing in the atmosphere from 1880 to the present (approximately 280 ppm to currently 415 ppm) the contribution to Global Warming from CO2 is not able to be successfully discerned when the empirical global temperature data record is juxtaposed with CO2 emissions. Because global temperatures were warming post 1979 and carbon emissions were continuing to steadily rise, the IPCC and others assumed a direct correlation and selectively used the empirical records post the late 1970’s to illustrate a direct correlation and an assumed causation between CO2 emissions and global warming.  They evidently essentially ignored the previous years with substantial evidence of the absence of correlation and causation.

Third Paradigm to Shift

There are 3 considerations that illustrate that the third “current paradigm”, which is that “cutting / eliminating CO2 emissions will control/eliminate global warming”, is an invalid assumption. While this paradigm is prolific in its proclamation and promotion, with literally thousands of people studying about, writing about and taking steps to try to fulfill its pledge, this paradigm is actually an empty promise, an assumption/supposition not supported by any material, demonstrative evidence. It is an assumption that, on a global scale, is untested, and unproven. It remains an unverified conjecture, devoid of experimental or experiential basis or any empirical global temperature data to support its postulation.

The following three considerations rebut the third paradigm’s validity and expose its foundational weaknesses. 

  1. The fundamental rebuttal, as illustrated by the data presented above that refuted Paradigm 2, is this: “Because CO2 is not a main, or even a discernable driver of the global warming being experienced, then cutting / eliminating CO2 emissions would likewise not be able to control, substantially reduce or eliminate global warming”.
  2. Figure 3 shows that CO2 annual emissions have been on the rise since 1850 and that they began increasing substantially after 1950. Thus, since 1850 there has never been a period of time to observe / quantify what the global effect of cutting or lowering CO2 emissions has been or would be. Further, not only have annual CO2 emissions increased year over year, the portion of the CO2 emissions that reach the atmosphere, (roughly 40-60%), stay for very long periods of time (10s to 100s of years), thus CO2 emissions have produced a gradual, continuous build-up of atmospheric concentrations of CO2 since 1850.  So, there has been no opportunity to scientifically measure, test or quantify the hypothesis that “cutting / eliminating CO2 emissions will control/eliminate global warming”.   Therefore, there has been no material scientific evidence or confirmation that could show the degree to which global temperatures would decrease if CO2 emissions are cut or are eliminated or even to establish that any decrease at all could be discerned. However, since the empirical data, as a whole, over the period 1880 to present, are not able to show a discernable or repeatable effect on the rate of increase in global temperate rise as a function of increase in CO2 emissions and or atmospheric concentration of CO2 (e.g.- recall there have even been extended periods where CO2 increased substantially and global temperatures reduced or did not increase), then by inference, reducing CO2 emissions would not be expected to show a discernable or repeatable effect on reducing the rate of global temperature rise (or causing it to fall).   
  3. On the other hand, the empirical temperature record since 1880, with its varying periods of global warming and cooling, does provide data that countermands the current third paradigm.   Namely, the evidence shows that global cooling occurred during substantial periods of increasing CO2 emissions and higher atmospheric concentrations of CO2.  The moderate global cooling post 1900 and post 1998 (see Figure 4) under increasing CO2 emissions and higher atmospheric concentrations of CO2 is, of course, not attributed to more CO2, but the empirical observations support the fact that the planetary global warming influence of CO2 greenhouse gas emissions was too small to override the natural variations that resulted in these periods of global cooling.  These several examples of global cooling (or lack of warming) under increasing levels of CO2 emissions and significantly cumulatively increased atmospheric concentrations of CO2 in the recent historic record is consistent with the observation and conclusion that there is an absence of any discernable effect of CO2 emissions on global temperatures.  This conclusion is likewise supported by the observation of periods time cited above with similar rates of global warming but with very different amounts of annual CO2 emissions and with substantially different atmospheric CO2 concentrations.

The above empirical, observational facts along with the absence of any material evidence supporting the assumption that cutting / eliminating CO2 emissions will control/eliminate global warming clearly refute the third existing paradigm. Thus, the paradigm should shift to one that states:

New Third Paradigm

******* To date there is no material or empirical evidence that demonstrates that reducing / cutting / eliminating CO2 emissions will control / eliminate the current global warming.” *******

Figure 4 –Global temperatures since 1979 from UAH Satellite Data

Future Considerations – without National Paradigm Shifts

Despite the scientific evidence to the contrary, including the empirical records of the last century and the history of cycles of global cooling and global warming to global temperatures higher than presently being experienced, CO2 emissions continue to be touted as the primary driver of the current global warming.  Notwithstanding the dire warnings delivered since 1990, the worldwide rate of rise in CO2 emissions has continued unabated. Undeterred by the reality of the impotent response to CO2 emission reduction to date (in fact there has been a steady rise),*** (see appendix) the purveyors of planetary calamity, trumpet a worldwide plan for about a 45% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030 and net zero CO2 emissions by 2050. These goals are presented and discussed extensively as though they will actually be achieved. Little is presented or discussed concerning (1) how this would be achieved (2) what the consequences and impacts would be on people and (3) how mandates would be imposed / enforced to ensure compliance in developed and developing countries and whether they would be different.  Also, of course, if the CO2 emissions (that have entered the atmosphere) were really the cause of the global warming being experienced, those “escaped” emissions would have to be recovered from then atmosphere in order to eliminate the hypothesized CO2 emission global warming effect. The years 2030 and 2050 are not that far away!!

The IPCC established a maximum acceptable global temperature increase of 1.50 C over the 1850-1900 level by 2050. Reaching this limit of increase is shown (see Figure 5) coincident with the reaching of zero CO2 emissions (2050). (There would have to be, as discussed above, some plan for removal of the added atmospheric CO2 for this plan to work according to their hypotheses).  Achieving this 1.50 C goal, as revealed in Figure 5, in perhaps the most egregious and outrageous assertion yet by the IPCC, implies that humans can actually “shut off” global warming (and by extension, all of nature’s natural variations on global temperature change) just by eliminating our CO2 emissions. This shut off is only a reality in their subjective climate modeling. Apparently, the IPCC forgot that planetary temperatures have been varying as a function of natural variation for thousands of years (in the current interglacial) and for hundreds of thousands of years during the glacial cycles. In reality, if we indeed got rid of our CO2 emissions we would revert to natural variation and if we were still in the current interglacial warming cycle which began around 1750, temperatures would continue to increase until the next interglacial cooling cycle began.  The IPCC left this reality out of their idealized forecast. 

Figure 4 – IPCC plot of future global temperatures if warming held to 1.50C

It is astonishing to think how disruptive, how impractical, how inequitable and how irrational the idea and plan to reach zero emissions by 2050 would be if it were to be put in place or attempted to be put in place. It is inconceivable that:

  1. The bulk of our universe of energy that the world runs on (electricity production, transportation, construction equipment, heating of homes and offices, and manufacturing, and more) and all of the facilities and jobs that support that universe of energy would be eliminated and discarded. The result, if forcefully effected, would be mammoth human suffering and a catastrophic environmental solid waste pile to be “fully” replaced by weather dependent renewables that now supply only a few percent of the planet’s total energy, under significant subsidies.
  2. All of this would be sanctioned and allowed to be done without any concrete, physical, empirical, experimental evidence that it (a) was needed or (b) that elimination and removal of CO2 emissions would have any significant effect on global warming. 
  3.  To satisfy the conceptual / theoretical role of CO2 in global warming not only would CO2 emissions need to be zeroed out, but massive amounts of CO2 would have to be extracted from the atmosphere to return to the conditions when CO2 emissions were “ostensibly” not controlling global warming, as explained below. 

Consider the accounting of CO2 emissions in the atmosphere. If indeed CO2 were the primary driver of the global warming currently being experienced, then CO2 emissions had to, at some particular point in time or over a particular period of time, have taken over control of global temperature change from all the natural solar and planetary system parameters /variations producing changes in global temperature prior to human produced CO2 emissions, as they have for thousands of years. It is well known and well documented that significant changes (increases and decreases) in global temperature took place during glacial periods (+ 10OC), during interglacial periods (+ 1-2OC) and even during periods of a general rising or falling of global temperature trend within an interglacial period (+ 0.2OC). This latter is the case with our current rising global temperature trend which began following the nadir of the Little Ice Age around 1750. Figure 2 shows a portion of that general rising trend (since 1880).

Examination of the empirical record of CO2 annual emissions since 1850 (Fig. 3) would suggest that that a logical point in time to consider that CO2 emissions could have begun to dominate/control global warming was around 1950 when CO2 emissions began to accelerate. However, that date obviously does not work since global cooling rather than warming occurred for over 30 years despite the higher CO2 emissions.  The next logical date to consider for a CO2 emission “take over” would be around 1979 when global temperatures began to rise above 1944 levels and at a relatively rapid rate.  Any later date would not make sense.  Table 1 shows that by 1979 about 400,000 million metric tons (MMT) of CO2 had been emitted world-wide since 1917 (Annual carbon dioxide emissions prior to 1917 were small and were omitted in this tabulation of cumulative totals). The atmospheric concentration of CO2 in 1979 was approximately 330 Parts per million up from about 295 in 1917. Currently the world is emitting about 36,000 MMT annually (up from 20,000 MMT in 1979) and has emitted a total of about 1,550,000 MMT since 1917.  The total CO2 emissions added since 1979 is about 1,100,00 MMT. Atmospheric concentration of CO2 now (2021) is approximately 413 Parts per million.

It follows logically that if annual CO2 emission levels and/or atmospheric CO2 concentration levels initiated a state of primary “global warming” control over natural variation then a return to these levels would be required to “just begin” to return global temperature control to natural variation.  Cutting / eliminating CO2 emissions to affect a return to 1979 conditions would thus require immediately (1) cutting emissions to 20,000 MMT and (2) extracting 500 billion tons of CO2 from the atmosphere. To return to natural variation in control of global warming would theoretically require returning to at least the 1944 CO2 emission levels (which would mean cutting emissions to 5,000 MT and extracting 750 billion tons of CO2 from the atmosphere). It is irresponsible and disingenuous to promote the idea that either of these objectives can and will be accomplished.  Annual CO2 emissions are still rising in most countries, so the actual removal figures would be greater than shown above. Extraction of CO2 from the atmosphere in the quantities that would be required is clearly impractical and cost prohibitive. Most importantly it would be foolish to even consider carrying out these efforts with no proof that they would be successful.

It is recognized that the increased atmospheric CO2 has been steadily increasing crop yields and greening our planet. There are a few installations that have been built around the world that are capturing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere – and what are they doing with it when captured? – paradoxically they are selling it to growers to increase crop yields, exactly what it was doing in our atmosphere

Next, consider that there would be a terrific economic cost (due to physical retrofitting) and environmental havoc that would result in the process of trying to achieve zero emissions.  Many common aspects of people’s lives (beyond breathing) involve CO2 emissions such as heating and lighting homes, offices, factories and schools, raising crops to feed the populous, producing goods in factories and construction of homes, airports, roads, office buildings and transportation in cars, planes, busses, and trains. The percentage breakdown of CO2 emissions by sector in the US is (1) 13% Commercial and Residential, (2) 29% Transportation, (3) 10% Agriculture, (4) 25% Electricity Generation and (5) 23% Industry.  It is estimated that there are about 1.5 billion cars on the planet, 300 million in China and 268 million in the US.  The questions abound – what happens to all the abandoned cars? Where does the energy come from to produce reliable electricity for homes?,  for charging electric cars?, for operating factories? Will home heating systems have to be renovated? How will heavy construction be done?   What is the energy source and environmental cost of generating new materials to replace transportation elements?, to build batteries?, to make wind turbines currently with a life span of only 20 years?,  What is the impact on developing countries? 

The currently advertised IPCC projection for future conditions by limiting global warming to 1.50 C (Fig.4 ) is that:

Zero emissions are to be reached by 2050 and then ……   woosh global warming will end – the paradigm shift needed is that:

The currently advertised IPCC paradigm presents an unrealistic, concocted scenario (an idea or plan that is impossible or very unlikely to happen) based on conjecture (a postulation and a vain hope that has not been proven, tested or verified).

What about the Future?  Based on what is known, what should be done?

The analysis of the CO2 emissions / global warming relationship above illustrated what  CO2 emissions are not doing, but the fact is that over 1,700 billion tons, of human produced CO2 has been emitted since 1900, a sizeable percentage of that CO2 (40-60%) entered our atmosphere and because of its longevity most of it is still there.  So, there is a need to investigate and evaluate the effects of the roughly 1,000 billion tons of CO2 that we have put into the atmosphere and to which we are adding about 20 billion more tons each year. The presence of this added CO2 is evident in the measured concentration of CO2 increasing from about 300 ppm around the turn of the century, to 315 ppm around 1944, to about 330 ppm around 1979, to nearly 420 ppm currently (2021). The atmospheric concentration due to human emissions is rising at a rate of about 45 ppm per decade.  The amount of our CO2 emissions in the atmosphere constitutes about 0.014 %  of the atmosphere.

What does the existence of this large, “non-natural” modification to our atmosphere, that has been developing in earnest since 1944, and has been “substantially” developed for the last 40 years tell us?  And what should we be doing to investigate and document its effects?

What it tells us and what needs doing:

While the notion that the multiple parameters that have influenced and controlled the natural cyclic and intracyclic variations in global temperature, (warming and cooling), that are evident in the historic record were essentially overtaken and usurped by the influence of emissions of one minor greenhouse (CO2 ), such that these other influences on global temperature (warming)  became inconsequential, seems unfathomable, but assume for the moment that it did occur as presently declared and propagated.  If so, the obvious questions are: (1) At what atmospheric concentration did CO2 emissions become the primary influencer of global temperature change?, and (2) Under what circumstances (e.g. atmospheric concentration of CO2) will global temperature change, (warming and cooling) return to the control of natural variables (non human influenced) conditions.

The only reasonable answer to the first question is around the period 1975 -1979 when the atmospheric concentration of CO2 reached about 330 ppm (and annual emissions were 20,000 MMT). This is because prior to that time (1945-1979) there was planetary cooling (global temperatures remaining below the 1944 level), and after that time a rapid warming took place until 1998 (followed by a period of lower global temperatures). The logical answer to the second question is that the atmospheric concentration of CO2 would need to return to at least below the 330 ppm CO2 “triggering” level to return global temperature variation to “natural variation parameters” if the prevailing conjecture were indeed valid? Since CO2 emissions continued (and at an ever increasing rate post 1979) this means that a “reservoir” or surplus of added CO2 above the level of  “CO2 emissions becoming the primary driver of global warming” developed. That surplus is currently about 750 billon tons of CO2. Thus:

  1. To remove CO2 emissions from their alleged primacy role in driving warming would not only require eliminating CO2 emissions but also extracting roughly at least 750 billion tons of CO2 from the atmosphere.
  • If indeed CO2 emissions “took over” control of global tempatures, and thus “the ongoing, current global warming” at around an atmosphic CO2 concentration of 330 ppm (circa 1979) and that resulted in the 0.470 C rise in global temperature by 1998, (a 0.250C rate of increase per decade – see table 1), then it would certainly be expected that the ever increasing amount of CO2 emissions entering the atmosphere following 1998 would have produced an accelerated, ever increasing rate of global temperature rise. However, as evidenced in Figure 4, not only was there not an acceleration of global warming “under the ever increasing amount of CO2 emissions post 1998” but essential there was a substantial number of years after 1998 with lower global temperatures and through 2021 there has been little increase in overall warming at all.  In fact, right now, January 2022, the global temperature is about 0.40C less than the global temperatures recorded in early 1998.

This is not to say that the current overall global warming cycle has ceased, not at all, rather it illustrates that the natural variation with periods of greater and lesser warming (and some periods of cooling or little change) that has occurred historically is still taking place (see figure 2), but most importantly it illustrates that a continuous, ever increasing rate of rise in global temperatures is not occurring due to the greatly increased atmospheric CO2 concentration. That would be the expectation under the paradigm of CO2 emissions being the primary driver of global warming and that is not occurring.  

  • The IPCC endorsed paradigm promulgating CO2 emissions as having primary responsibity for the global warming being experienced (circa 1990) was an assumption based on observation of the post 1979 concurrent rise in global temperatures and the ongoing increase in CO2 emissions. This hypothesis was essentially accepted as a fact and was not subjected to rigorous independent examimation and proof based on the scientific method. Rather, it was buoyed and reinforced using subjective climate modeling, endorsed and sustained by the positive spin off / by products of what the paradigm called for, (such as cutting pollution from fossil fuels and enhancing/greening the environment) and anecdotally reinforced by the ongoing “expected” outcomes of the ongoing cycle of global warming (e.g. glaciers melting).  Subsequently, this misconception (that the primary cause of the global warming being experienced is anthropogenic global warming due to CO2 emissions), was given the pseudonym “climate change” and became a cause celebre and spread to every sector of society – including economic, academia, media, and political. Further, despite the lack of a reasonably rigorous scientific investigation to support it, debate/discussion of the issue was shut down with claims that it was “settled science” and that anyone questioning the claim was a “denier”.  The classical error of  assuming “correlation proved causation” was made by the purveyors of the paradigm that CO2 emissions were primarily responsible for the current global warming and this error was all the more egregious due to basing the correlation on only a small portion (post 1979) of the global temperature record. But now, once examined by the full extent of the empirical evidence,  it is evident that the increasing CO2 emissions did not, during formative stages (1945-1975), and do not presently have the dominate effect on global temperatures that was assumed.

So in light of the fact that the actual effects of the burgeoning CO2 emissions going into the atmosphere (which have now reached 1000 billion tons) were not rigorously and scientifically examined, what should be done now? It is imperative that the possible effects of the large quantity of CO2 emissions that have been added to the atmosphere need to be identified/brainstormed and then monitored and investigated. The efforts required include:

  • Brainstorm what positive and negative effects may be occurring, so as to identify and monitor the effects due to the presence of CO2 added to the atmosphere,
  • Scientifically examine the possible effects hypothesized with particular attention to observing increasing effects with time in concert with the accelerating rate of CO2 emissions since about 1945. (Note that the increased greening of the planet, which is consistent with a fundamental effect of atmospheric CO2, has already been demonstrated and documented.)
  • Establish realistic goals for reduction of fossil fuel use, not because of CO2 but to reduce pollution and develop alternative energy supplies.
  • Convert as many futile CO2 “climate change” study efforts as possible to the above efforts in order to determine what, if any, adverse effects of the increased atmospheric CO2 are and how they should be addressed.

Conclusion

National Global Warming Paradigm Shifts are badly needed as are investigations of what if any are the real identifiable effects of the increased atmospheric CO2.

***Appendix 

 Chill out about global warming
The evidence doesn’t establish that it’s ‘the existential threat’

by Clifford May
The Washington Times
November 10, 2021

 

At the United Nations Climate Summit (aka COP26) in Glasgow last week, President Biden declared that climate change is “the existential threat to human existence as we know it.”

Based on that judgment, he plans to implement policies that will weaken America’s national security and economy, as well as slow development in poor countries. Perhaps this question occurs to you: Is Mr. Biden’s judgement, correct?

Those arguing that it is not include Steven E. Koonin, who served as the senior scientist in the Department of Energy under President Obama. Mr. Koonin does not “deny” that the climate is changing or that human activity is influencing that change.

But in articles and a book published this year, “Unsettled: What Climate Science Tells Us, What It Doesn’t, and Why It Matters,” he makes a persuasive case that the computer models that predict climate apocalypse are deficient and unreliable.

He provides data showing that heat waves in the U.S. “are now no more common than they were in 1900,” that “the warmest temperatures in the US have not risen in the past fifty years,” and that “Greenland’s ice sheet isn’t shrinking any more rapidly today than it was eighty years ago.”

If you’ve been led to believe otherwise, that’s probably because activists have been “exaggerating and distorting” the evidence to make the case that “we are facing the ‘last, best chance’ to save the planet from a hellish future.”

He notes that the most recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change “deems its highest-emissions scenarios of the future unlikely, even though those are the ones you’re mostly likely to hear about in media reports.”

Since the late 1800s, he points out, the world has warmed by about 1 degree Celsius without significantly adverse consequences. He postulates that “even 1.5 degrees of additional warming by 2100 will have minimal net economic impact.” He scolds commentators who fail to grasp the difference between weather and climate.

Bjorn Lomborg, who heads the Copenhagen Consensus Center, contends that policies aimed at cooling the planet quickly are bound to fail. Even if the U.S. went “entirely net zero” on carbon emissions tomorrow, he has calculated, that “would only cut temperatures by the end of the century by 0.3 degree Fahrenheit” – barely measurable.

That’s because “most of the emissions in the 21st century will come from China, India, Africa, the rest of Southeast Asia, Latin America – countries that are now trying to lift their populations out of poverty and obviously have much greater priorities than cutting carbon emissions.” Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni recently wrote: “Africa can’t sacrifice its future prosperity for Western climate goals.”

Mr. Lomborg urges a different approach: increased investment in “green energy research” to develop sources of power cheaper than fossil fuels. And, of course, we could cut carbon emissions immediately by switching from coal to natural gas and bringing online nuclear power facilities such as those France utilizes. Why those options are rejected by most activists we’ll leave for another discussion.

Mr. Lomborg emphasizes the human ability to adapt to climate change. Farmers will switch crops. Levees and dikes can protect low-lying areas near oceans as is already the case in below-sea-level Holland and New Orleans. Since trees ingest carbon dioxide, boosting re-afforestation can be helpful. Keeping free markets free spurs innovation.

By contrast, “climate summits” – 26 of them since 1992 – where politicians arrive on private jets, virtue signal, spew hot air, and make promises they can’t or won’t keep bring no progress. Perhaps you noticed that, just before COP26, Mr. Biden was pressuring OPEC to produce more oil.

Another shortcoming of the current approach is that “renewable” sources of energy are less renewable than advertised. The Manhattan Institute’s Mark P. Mills has noted: “Wind and solar machines and batteries are built from nonrenewable materials. And they wear out. Old equipment must be decommissioned, generating millions of tons of waste.”

“Building enough wind turbines to supply half the world’s electricity would require nearly two billion tons of coal to produce the concrete and steel, along with two billion barrels of oil to make the composite blades,” he added. “More than 90% of the world’s solar panels are built in Asia on coal-heavy electric grids.”

As for electric cars: “A single electric-car battery weighs about 1,000 pounds,” Mr. Mills wrote. “Fabricating one requires digging up, moving and processing more than 500,000 pounds of raw materials somewhere on the planet.”

Other drawbacks include the need for rare-earth metals and other materials that will be mined “in nations with oppressive labor practices. The Democratic Republic of the Congo produces 70 percent of the world’s raw cobalt, and China controls 90 percent of the cobalt refining.” Perhaps you’re aware, too, that Chinese President Xi Jinping, who didn’t attend COP26, is building new coal-powered plants.

Last month, Mr. Xi tested a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile that could be used to launch a first strike against the U.S. Also last month, Nicolas Chaillan, a senior cybersecurity official at the Defense Department, resigned, explaining that because the Pentagon is not prioritizing cybersecurity and artificial intelligence, successfully competing with China in those strategic areas will be impossible anytime soon. Ignoring such warnings, the Defense Department last week announced plans to name a “senior person” to – perhaps you guessed – “prioritize” climate change.

Almost three years ago, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, declared that “the world is going to end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change.” Based on that judgment, she’s determined to implement her “Green New Deal,” ignoring the perspectives of experts such as those quoted above. Perhaps it occurs to you that Mr. Biden and others who are following her lead are not following the science.

Conclusion:  National Global Warming Paradigm Shifts Are Badly Needed and Inve

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