Chilingar has republished his paper that shows that if you assume CO2 is not a greenhouse gas then it doesn’t warm the planetin Enviromental Geology. This paper is so bad that S Fred Singer has resigned as an editor from Environmental Geology. Yes, this S Fred Singer.

Hat tip: Eli Rabett.

Comments

  1. #1 Chris O'Neill
    July 7, 2009

    As a climate scientist he makes a great petroleum geologist.

  2. #2 Bernard J.
    July 7, 2009

    For those who might not be inclined to follow the links, Chilingar’s abstract:

    Conventional theory of global warming states that heating of atmosphere occurs as a result of accumulation of CO2 and CH4 in atmosphere. The writers show that rising concentration of CO2 should result in the cooling of climate. The methane accumulation has no essential effect on the Earth’s climate. Even significant releases of the anthropogenic carbon dioxide into the atmosphere do not change average parameters of the Earth’s heat regime and the atmospheric greenhouse effect. Moreover, CO2 concentration increase in the atmosphere results in rising agricultural productivity and improves the conditions for reforestation. Thus, accumulation of small additional amounts of carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere as a result of anthropogenic activities has practically no effect on the Earth’s climate.

    The physical claims are gobsmacking in and of themselves, but it seems that the authors are determined to also embarrass themselves over the biological impacts of CO2. Whilst the idea that it is a universal balm for plant growth might warm the cockles of the hearts of the likes of Tim Curtin, the complexity of [real world interactions](http://www.springerlink.com/content/q3270n6g3w1q7925/) results in a very different outcome to the dreamed-of CO2 Nirvana of the Denialati.

    I predict that before the day is out there will be Denialists across the global crying from the rooftops that Chilingar has irrefutably proved that CO2 is not a greenhouse gas, that because it cannot causing warming, there is no warming, and that it is not a pollutant at any concentration. All these despite the fact that he has done no such thing.

    I wonder who will be the first to claim such on this thread?

    Meanwhile, back in the world of credible science, Environmental Geology will have to wrestle with E&E for the honour of being the most miserable of the toilet papers that masquerade as scientific publications.

    That Dyson resigned over the matter says a lot. I wonder if he might be nudged by this debacle to reconsider his current take on AGW…

  3. #3 John Mashey
    July 7, 2009

    Singer != Dyson

  4. #4 Dunc
    July 7, 2009

    Whilst the idea that it is a universal balm for plant growth might warm the cockles of the hearts of the likes of Tim Curtin, the complexity of real world interactions results in a very different outcome to the dreamed-of CO2 Nirvana of the Denialati.

    You don’t even need to get that technical – Liebig’s law of the Minimum is still the first thing anyone should learn about plant nutrition. As far as I know, there is nowhere on Earth outside of a computer-controlled greenhouse where CO2 is the limiting growth factor. Water, temperature and the bio-available fixed nitrogen are far more important in virtually all cases.

    If CO2 were the limiting growth factor, irrigation and the application of fertilisers would be futile.

  5. #5 _Arthur
    July 7, 2009

    My wingnut GW denialist buddy has been clamoring to me for one week that CO2 gas has a COOLING effect, and besides, the climate is currently COOLING, not warming.

    To what I replied: all the more reason to curtail CO2 emissions, then ?!

    Somehow, he was not pleased. But then, he’s not strong on logic.

  6. #6 _Arthur
    July 7, 2009

    My wingnut GW denialist buddy has been clamoring to me for one week that CO2 gas has a COOLING effect, and besides, the climate is currently COOLING, not warming.

    To what I replied: all the more reason to curtail CO2 emissions, then ?!

    Somehow, he was not pleased. But then, he’s not strong on logic.

  7. #7 Marion Delgado
    July 7, 2009

    Good for Singer.

    And yeah, Dyson is not Singer – on the one hand he potentially has less expertise on climate than Singer, on the other hand he’s probably more honest and as a general scientist he’s several classes above Singer.

    Neither are relevant.

  8. #8 MarkusR
    July 7, 2009

    Meanwhile, back in the world of credible science, Environmental Geology will have to wrestle with E&E for the honour of being the most miserable of the toilet papers that masquerade as scientific publications.

    As someone who is not a scientist, but recognizes general respectability of peer reviewed sources, this can cause serious confusion especially when such documents are linked through SpringerLink. There was a debate on another forum where a “non-skeptic” placed a link showing AGW in action, while a “skeptic” threw up another link again from SpringerLink showing a Chilingar paper.

    As a pure layman who can’t tell much difference between all the various journals, it’s hard to get good authoritative claims out there.

  9. #9 John Mashey
    July 7, 2009

    re: 7 Marion
    No, *not* good for Singer. :-)

    He hasn’t backed off in the least (NIPCC), so he doesn’t get a “good” until he’s done enough to make up for decades of “bad”.

    I’d suggest that Singer does anti-science, but probably wants to avoid to be seen supporting grotesquely-obvious pseudoscience.

    re: 8 MarkusR

    It would be nice to gather a list of dodgy journals, not just the obvious ones like E&E or JSE, but others where peer review seems to have broken down.

    Still, suppose this paper had somehow magically appeared in Science or Nature? So what? No matter where published, long-established science doesn’t easily get overturned by a single paper, no matter how badly some people want to think that. Even there, it would be just another brick in the wall.

  10. #10 Dano
    July 7, 2009

    the dreamed-of CO2 Nirvana of the Denialati.

    Dagnabbit! It is MY provenance to make up fun phrases. Well, absent that, I shall have to appropriate and attribute, Bernard. May I?

    Best,

    D

  11. #11 CapitalClimate
    July 7, 2009

    I think “Deniorati” has a better ring, and it has the virtue of containing “rat”.

  12. #12 CapitalClimate
    July 7, 2009

    Some etymological provenance: The text scan suffers from some really bad OCR conversion, but “Deniorati” seems to have been used in the October 20, 1906 Washington Herald.

  13. #13 Aureola Nominee, FCD
    July 7, 2009

    CapitalClimate:

    “deniorati” is indeed bad OCR. If you zoom in and read the passage in question, the word was “Democratic”.

  14. #14 TrueSceptic
    July 7, 2009

    Who was the first to use “denidiot” or “skeptard”?

  15. #15 Eli Rabett
    July 7, 2009
  16. #16 MAB
    July 7, 2009

    John Mashey @8 is spot on for my reckoning.

    This paper was so transparently bad than Singer risked his opaque veneer of pseudo-credibility if he fell in behind it.

  17. #17 Eli Rabett
    July 7, 2009
  18. #18 Dan satterfield
    July 8, 2009

    This disease of logic tends to affect petroleum geologists frequently. It may be related to Upton Sinclair’s statement that it is very hard to convince someone of anything IF their job depends on it not being true.
    dan

  19. #19 John Mashey
    July 8, 2009

    re: #18 Dan
    Petroleum geologists

    I’m really not sure why this is. Peak Oil will have way more effect on their job opportunities than climate issues will.

    It’s hard to believe that a lot of obtainable oil will be left in the ground; after all, it’s very useful for chemical feedstocks, not just as fuel. Oil is just too useful in many ways.

    Some coal mining people might have more rational worries about coal being left in the ground for climate reasons.

  20. #20 MarkG
    July 8, 2009

    >I’m really not sure why this is. Peak Oil will have way more effect on their job opportunities than climate issues will.

    Agreed, but I think the answer is fear. Fear of the unknown world into which we are inevitably headed. If I might presume to put myself into the position of a petroleum geologist; I suspect they feel that they are rather beset by people telling them of all the terrible things they are doing to the world. And indeed between peak oil and climate change it hardly seems possible that wealthy western society can escape unscathed. They might further fear that they are being setup to be the scapegoat if indeed things take a turn for the worse. There is also the personal self interest; any changes to the status quo will mostly likely hurt the field financially, I hardly see how it cannot.

    These are all pretty rational things to fear and so they respond with papers like Chilingar’s. Not really a very rational response, but people backed into a corner aren’t always at their best.

  21. #21 Thomas
    July 8, 2009

    Peak oil is going to be very profitable for petroleum geologists. With everyone scrambling to find even the smallest new oil fields and trying to squeeze out as much oil as possible out of the old ones, geologists will be in high demand.

  22. #22 Billy Bob Hall
    July 8, 2009

    Its not bad at all… in fact it’s rather good.

  23. #23 MAB
    July 8, 2009

    Bill Bob,

    Thanks for being so transparent!

  24. #24 Mark
    July 8, 2009

    > Thanks for being so transparent!

    > Posted by: MAB

    And yet, at the same time, dense.

  25. #25 Lee
    July 8, 2009

    @Dunc:
    “If CO2 were the limiting growth factor, irrigation and the application of fertilisers would be futile.”

    Living here in California, I have a friend who grows for the Medical Marijuana clubs. Under local ordinance, he has a cooperative of 3 people, and can grow up to 96 square feet (about 9 m2) of canopy and remain legal under California and city laws – still illegal under federal law, of course.

    He has strong incentive to maximize every inch of his grow – and he uses CO2 supplementation. It increases his yield by about 20% – if he does everything else perfectly.

    However – if he gives too little light, the CO2 is wasted money, he gets the same result as under too little light and no CO2. The CO2 is wasted money.

    CO2 does raise the temperature optimum a bit, but if the temperature is too high or too low, the CO2 is wasted money. If he lets the plants wilt and undergo water shock even once during a grow, the CO2 is wasted money. If he underfertilizes or overfertilizes even once, or lets the hydroponics get off optimum pH, the CO2 has only minimal impact, and is mostly wasted money.

    CO2 makes a big difference to his plant growth and yield, in a circumstance where it makes sense to invest a lot in optimum growth and maximize yield from every inch. But it only makes a difference after everything else is near perfect.

  26. #26 Dunc
    July 8, 2009

    That’s exactly my point, Lee.

  27. #27 John Mashey
    July 8, 2009

    Lee & Dunc: you are agreeing strongly, both with reality!

    “Plants are starving for CO2,we need more of it” seems to have originated mostly with the Idsos: Sherwood, and his sons Craig, and Keith, who run the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change, whose funding has included at least ExxonMobil and the Greening Earth Society (a front for Western Fuels Association, i.e., Powder River coal).

    For a good talk on the CO2 efforts of the above, see Naomi Oreskes’ lecture You Can Argue with the Facts. My synopsis is here and her slides are

    Do not miss the video of the Earth Greening up, including the Sahara. “Plants have been eating CO2 and they are starved.” This film is

  28. #28 Florifulgurator
    July 8, 2009

    Singer has signed this grotesque letter: http://www.climatedepot.com/a/1745/Scientists-Write-Open-Letter-to-Congress-You-Are-Being-Deceived-About-Global-Warming–Earth-has-been-cooling-for-ten-years

    This proves he can’t even read noisy data charts, i.e. is scientifically illiterate (just like Lindzen, Pielke Sr., etc…)

    So, why should he resign over Chilingar?

  29. #29 Mark
    July 8, 2009

    > CO2 makes a big difference to his plant growth and yield, in a circumstance where it makes sense to invest a lot in optimum growth and maximize yield from every inch.

    > Posted by: Lee

    Oddly though they don’t work out whether higher CO2 makes the plants tastier and better for their parasites.

    Which is true for Corn plants: the extra CO2 reduces their chemical deterrent to beetles that eat their leaves and so they have less leaf than the un-drenched corn plants.

    And therefore have less energy to put into the bit we grow corn for: the cob.

    The “It’s PLANT FOOD!!!” crowd never check that up…

  30. #30 John Mashey
    July 8, 2009

    re: #27 Florifulgurator

    I think you miscategorize Singer and Lindzen, neither of whom is scientifically illiterate, and one of whom has actually done fine work in atmospheric sciences, even if recent ideas have not survived so well. Both of them easily have the training and background to know better, which is different from someone who just doesn’t understand.

    I do think they got there via rather different routes. More later, when I’ve finished updates to reasons for anti-science.

    On the tentative knowledge Scale K I use:

    A real scientific illiterate would be ~K0.

    Lindzen: ~K9

    Singer: may well once have been ~K9, although that was decades ago.

    A scale for anti-science “knowledge” is in the works.
    I’ve tried to use K-1, K-2, but I haven’t gotten that to work right yet, because:

    “It’s warming on Mars, Jupter, etc.”

    Can be interpreted one way if some unknowledgable person says it, and quit differently when Lindzen says it.

  31. #31 Nathan
    July 9, 2009

    I assume everyone else knows, and it’s completely off topic, but how funny is it that Jennifer M got the sack from the IPA??? HA HA HA

  32. #32 Florifulgurator, PhD dropout
    July 9, 2009

    re #30
    Umm, yeah. That Singer and Lindzen signed the letter does indeed not prove they are scientifically illiterate. Rather it is a statement: “The signatories herewith state: We are either blatant shameless liars or scientifically illiterate”.

  33. #33 GWB's nemesis
    July 9, 2009

    I love the quote on her blog “But I am giving myself some time while I ponder, to continuing writing my first work of fiction – a dystopian fiction based in a remote Indonesian fishing village. ”

    There is certainly an abundance of evidence that fiction is her forte.

  34. #34 sleepy
    July 9, 2009

    Jennifer is being too modest about claiming her first work of fiction isn’t she, what does she call her bog?

  35. #35 John Mashey
    July 10, 2009

    re: #32

    yes, quite seriously, one must try to ascertain whether someone is illiterate, or something else, because the first can be helped, sometimes, whereas the second…

  36. #36 Gaz
    July 13, 2009

    Jennifer is being too modest about claiming her first work of fiction isn’t she, what does she call her bog?

    Posted by: sleepy | July 9, 2009 6:25 PM

    Way to go, Sleepy! Freudian Slip Of The Year.

  37. #37 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2009

    36 Gaz,

    Hey, I’ve been calling it the Marohasy **Bog** for ages. Perhaps it wasn’t in vain?

  38. #38 Gaz
    July 14, 2009

    37 TrueSceptic: Either way, it’s entirely appropriate.

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