Archive for May, 2014

Refining my theory of Climate Change

May 6, 2014

The basic theory remains intact; this is a refinement. For more on the basics, read the two essays on this blog regarding global warming and proposed fixes.

But one thing was missing; the realization that the Earth’s surface can be classified into critical zones and non-critical zones. Between those there exists a gradation where the impact of insolation is important, but less so than is the case in the Critical Zones.

Generally speaking, the Critical Zones are those where insolation warms the ground and the heat absorbed can only escape through re-radiation. Less-critical areas have enough water or plant cover to mitigate the warming effect, or the angle of insolation is such that incoming solar radiation is less effective. Since the warming is the key to climate,  it is also the key to climate change.

There’s also the possibility of hope in this designation. The key to the greenhouse effect is re-radiating, and the trapping mechanism we call the Greenhouse Effect is based on molecular/atomic dimensions and the wavelength of re-radiated energy. This planetary surface warming may increase such that the re-radiation shifts to shorter-wavelengths in the infrared energy bands,which  means that the absorption by CO2/CH4/H2O will either be shifted to other molecules or will not happen at all. This may actually be the source of what’s been observed, that climate warming is neither as severe as predicted nor is it happening as fast as predicted.

As for those critical zones: beginning at the equator, moving north and south, this region is less critical because of the extensive plant cover and the availability of water. Each reduces the effectiveness of greenhouse warming because plants transpire water, hence water transport reduces surface heating. The same is true where free surface water exists, the water evaporates and the surface heat is removed as latent heat. In each case, the water vapor carries the heat and releases it high in the atmosphere at the zone of condensation. From this point, the heat energy still exists, but now it has less atmosphere and less-dense atmosphere to contend with; more of the energy will escape, less will be trapped. Net effect, I believe the bands of planetary surface within five to about seven degrees north and south of the equator are less critical.

The warm-desert regions that exist roughly ten degrees north and south of the equator are the critical zones. Even here, just as is the case in the earlier zones, terrain features play a part. But generally speaking, there’s little cloud cover (clouds reflect incoming solar radiation, reducing surface heating) and the sun’s rays are highly effective because they’re close to ninety degrees where incoming radiation is most effective. Net result, the land heats, and the heat can only be transferred by conduction (with atmospheric gases, a surface effect) and radiation. Radiation, re-radiation because the energy doesn’t originate with the Earth’s surface, is what’s important. This is the source for the energy that ‘greenhouse gases’ trap.

The rest of the theory proceeds as outlined in my previous essays, reflect more, trap less, you control climate heating. Developing engineering methods to vary the amount of climate heating/cooling, you’ve invented the science of climate modification.