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Methane Causes Half Of Global Warming–IPCC

February 5, 2022

By Paul Homewood




The BBC article on methane makes an interesting claim:

An IPCC study last year suggested that 30-50% of the current rise in temperatures is down to methane.

The study referred to is AR6, which estimates that increased levels of methane in the atmosphere have contributed 0.5C to global warming since 1850-1900:




Given that even IPCC reports have accepted that some of the warming since the 19thC has been naturally caused, that does not leave much which can be due to CO2.

Even without taking those natural factors into account, net of aerosols only about 0.6C of warming is man-made, once methane is excluded from the equation:



It therefore seems that CO2 is a vanishingly small problem.

Methane, which is 84 times as powerful as a GHG per unit than CO2, has an extremely short life span, declining in the atmosphere by half every decade.

Consequently we don’t have to start drastically reducing emissions now. Merely maintaining current emissions will mean that atmospheric concentrations will level off quickly:


Indeed, if the current push to cut methane emissions is successful, we would likely see rapid global cooling, assuming of course the IPCC calculations are right.

Given the reactions of the world’s leaders and scientists in the 1970s following three decades of global cooling, that might not turn out to be such a clever idea at all!


I should point out that some scientists believe that methane is virtually irrelevant as a GHG, because its emissions spectrum is already fully filled by water vapour.

See here.

  1. Colin R Brooks AKA Dung permalink
    February 5, 2022 12:38 pm

    er, um, run that by me again, so CO2 is NOT the bogeyman after all??

    • February 5, 2022 2:02 pm

      The anti natural gas crowd desperately wants to make methane the bogeyman instead

    • sid permalink
      February 5, 2022 6:09 pm

      It never was

    • Ben Vorlich permalink
      February 5, 2022 6:21 pm

      Anti CO2 propaganda has failed, too many people now understand it’s vital for life. By moving on to Methane they are trying to stop any Net Zero back sliding as it has become obvious that renewables are not and never have been up to the job. Demonising Methane means no natural gas.
      I hope, but think it a bit of a long shot, that people realise this is just another scare story

    • dodgy geezer permalink
      February 6, 2022 8:21 am

      Nothing is ACTUALLY the bogeyman, since the problem doesn’t exist.

      This is just a report which is exchanging one fake bogeyman for another…

      • Chaswarnertoo permalink
        February 6, 2022 10:12 am

        And CFCs caused 1/2 of globular warning, too. Greentards can’t add up.

  2. Colin R Brooks AKA Dung permalink
    February 5, 2022 12:39 pm

    Do 2 plus 2 still equal four or has that been adjusted upwards?

    • dodgy geezer permalink
      February 5, 2022 3:09 pm

      What would you like them to equal?

      (signed) IPCC Government scientist.

      • Colin R Brooks AKA Dung permalink
        February 5, 2022 6:44 pm

        Thanks for putting me right mate ^.^

    • 1saveenergy permalink
      February 5, 2022 8:17 pm

      “Do 2 plus 2 still equal four or has that been adjusted upwards?”

      It never did !! … The true ans is 22.

      • Harry Passfield permalink
        February 5, 2022 9:17 pm

        No. It’s 100

      • Up2snuff permalink
        February 6, 2022 3:20 pm

        Ahem, 42 – not 22.

    • T Walker permalink
      February 5, 2022 10:36 pm

      Torture the data hard enough and it will tell you anything you want.

      • jimlemaistre permalink
        February 6, 2022 12:05 am

        Yeah . . . E = come see the squirrel . . .

    • Bloke down the pub permalink
      February 6, 2022 2:19 pm

      Surely the original claims on the impact of CO2 included the supposed feedbacks from things like melting sea ice and release of CH4 from melting permafrost? Isn’t this just a case of a change in the accountancy methods?

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      February 7, 2022 8:52 am

      It’s three before 1940 and five thereafter. For 2050 onwards its six.

  3. February 5, 2022 12:53 pm

    The main bogey people are, in fact, our Sun and water vapour and cosmic rays, so
    CO2 has been exonerated and can and must keep greening the planet, biologically, not politicallly.

    • bobn permalink
      February 6, 2022 2:28 am

      Correct. Why has their graph above omitted H2O? Its the biggest greenhouse gas of them all by a country mile but strangely they only deal with the negligible gases.

      • Vernon E permalink
        February 6, 2022 3:58 pm

        bobn: It also has to be remembered that without greenhouse gase (mainly water vapour as you say) the planet would be 20 deg C cooler and we wouldn’t be here.

      • February 6, 2022 7:03 pm

        C02 is 0.04% of the atmosphere and it’s largely blocked by absorbed infrared radiation. Of the 0.04%, 3% is believed to be manmade.
        GIGO problems must have invalidated the preictive models.
        So incriminators of CO2 are aiming at thae wrong “villain”.
        There is zero evidence that reducing CO2 output could influence world climate. The bulk of manmade CO2 comes from nations non-compliant with curbing greenhouse gases.

      • jimlemaistre permalink
        February 6, 2022 10:07 pm

        These Non-Compliant countries would NOT be burning Fossil fuels had the western Nations, 30 years ago, started shutting down Primary Industries with all the environmental laws. Then passed No legislation that requires Duties on Non-Compliant imports. Today China processes 60% of global base metals 30 years ago it was less than 5% . . . Our laws pushed production there !

        Our new world order – Social Egalitarianism, Globalization, Environmentalism and Social Engineering in the 21st Century – The Irony of it all . . . Printing money to make up for what we gave away in the name of Environmentalism, to the Third World – Our Economies are dying – Social Elitism has failed – Now the once powerful ‘Home-Grown’ Unionists ARE the down trodden – They payed the price – while the Elitist Socio-Economic Wisdom thrives – in the West – meanwhile China Laughs – All the way to the Bank. Today China alone, processes 60% of Global Base Metals . . . and all the pollution that goes with it – 25 Chinese Cities now account for 50% of Global CO2 – Out of site – Out of mind . . . The New World Order . . . 30 years since China evolved . . . Western Elitist self-flagellation in the name of Environmentalism – Maintains Total Global Pollution – While stripping the very life out of the Western Economies . . . With no end-gain . . . in Global terms . . . Total GLOBAL Pollution remains the same !!! But we look sooo good . . . on paper . . . and . . . now, we can point fingers at others

        My Thoughts . . .

      • February 6, 2022 7:04 pm

        Yes, about 95% or more of the atmosphere’s greenhouse gases is water vapour, overwhelming CO2’s greenhouse effect. Moreover, saturation by infrared radiation largely blocks CO2’s greenhouse feature. CO2 is 0.04% of the atmosphere. 3% of that CO2 is believed to be manmade. The amount of manmade CO2 in the atmosphere is therfore very small.
        GIGO must have ruined the design of the predictive computer models.

  4. February 5, 2022 12:59 pm

    “….The IPCC, which is 84 times more mendacious than Mystic Meg in it’s ‘projections’….”

    Fixed it for you!

  5. Gamecock permalink
    February 5, 2022 1:07 pm

    ‘The study referred to is AR6, which estimates that increased levels of methane in the atmosphere have contributed 0.5C to global warming since 1850-1900’

    They use a decimal point to show they have a sense of humor.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      February 7, 2022 8:53 am

      I love the 1850-1900 bit! Shows they have no clue about the claim.

  6. bluecat57 permalink
    February 5, 2022 1:13 pm

    All those politicians off-gassing.

  7. February 5, 2022 1:14 pm

    Halving global warming from 0.014°C per year to 0.007°C a year in my book is a total waste of time; unless like the BBC you have a political agenda financed by the taxpayer.

  8. February 5, 2022 1:18 pm

    “It therefore seems that CO2 is a vanishingly small problem”. That statement unfortunately is completely wrong Paul. CO2 never has been a problem in the first place EXCEPT as geological history shows us rather than there being too much, there is dangerously too little in the atmosphere caused by a 160 million year problem which is continuing.

    I have been writing about the fact that CO2 is a non problem and boring people by pointing out that there is zero empirical data based evidence to support the case against CO2. ZERO! I have been also pointing out the converse empirical data based study for quite some time quoting work by far more clever people than myself paleo surface temperature after Scotese (1999) paleo CO2 reconstruction after Berner(2001) and W Jackson Davis (2017) in his paper: “The Relationship between Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentration and Global Temperature for the Last 425 Million Years. Climate 2017, 5, 76; doi:10.3390/cli5040076

    That is what geological history says which only agrees with the physics of what CO2 can, and cannot do. The climate fear propagandists use science in an unacceptable and disgusting way. When they talk about the unproven greenhouse effect strange do you not think that they “forget” usually to mention anything about the main greenhouse gas by virtue not only of its properties but by virtue of its quantity in the atmosphere. That gas is Water Vapour of which there are orders of magnitude more of it in the atmosphere than CO2. One look at the electromagnetic spectra for CO2 and Water Vapour will tell you something is very wrong in what the public are being brainwashed with. A brilliant lecture by a great physicist Will Happer explains this point in the video below. Freeman Dyson sadly no longer with us is in the audience.

    • 1saveenergy permalink
      February 5, 2022 8:23 pm

      That link gives …
      “This page isn’t available. Sorry about that. Try searching for something else.”
      Has video been disappeared ??

  9. Joe Public permalink
    February 5, 2022 1:28 pm

    “Methane in the atmosphere is generated by many different sources, such as fossil fuel development and use, decay of organic matter in wetlands, and as a byproduct of livestock farming. Determining which specific sources are responsible for variations in methane annual increase is difficult. Preliminary analysis of carbon isotopic composition of methane in the NOAA air samples done by the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research at the University of Colorado, indicates that it is likely that a primary driver of the increased methane burden comes from biological sources of methane such as wetlands or livestock rather than thermogenic sources like oil and gas production and use.

    My bold

    • catweazle666 permalink
      February 5, 2022 2:55 pm

      From the link:
      “Levels of the two most important anthropogenic greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide and methane, continued their unrelenting rise in 2020 despite the economic slowdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic response, NOAA announced today.”

      The economic recession was estimated to have reduced carbon emissions by abent during 2020″

      They really are clutching at straws now.

      • catweazle666 permalink
        February 5, 2022 2:57 pm

        “Abent” should read “about 7%” but linked to

      • It doesn't add up... permalink
        February 5, 2022 10:04 pm

        7% of 4ppm annual contribution is ~0.3ppm, while they report CO2 concentrations to the nearest 0.1ppm. Surely there should have been a detectable signal?

      • catweazle666 permalink
        February 6, 2022 2:20 pm


  10. David V permalink
    February 5, 2022 1:59 pm

    Can’t help thinking the sudden emphasis on methane has something to do with the EU deciding that “natural gas” (marsh gas when I was at school) is green and therefore hunky dory.

  11. Jordan permalink
    February 5, 2022 2:08 pm

    In the second graphic the title says “assessed from attribution studies”. Literal translation: “assessed from theoretical guesswork”.
    Attribution studies are stuck in theoretical reasoning as there is no observational science to confirm these guesses. Five decades of trying very hard has not moved this forward one iota.
    The BBC interprets the IPCC study as indicating 30%-50% of recent warming is due to methane. I disagree on the evidence of the first graphic above . The overlapping error bars leads to the conclusion that methane and CO2 have the THE SAME contribution (not statistically discernible as indicated by the overlapping error ranges).
    Which allows me to arrive at some good news: it looks like we have acceptance that coal is not the demon it was made out to be. We have the start of the case t0 go back to coal as a primary fuel.

  12. February 5, 2022 2:34 pm

    “Methane, which is 84 times as powerful as a GHG per unit than CO2” misses out the key words “in isolation. Methane is not in isolation; its effect is negligible.

    • Rasa permalink
      February 5, 2022 3:04 pm

      Methane in the atmosphere is 1.8parts per 1,000,000 parts
      Source: CSIRO Cape Grim Tasmania Australia

    • February 5, 2022 5:25 pm

      Yes, the “84 times as powerful as a GHG” is not “news you can trust” despite that being the Guardian’s motto.

      First they base it on weight, which exaggerates the volume of CH4 molecules, which is the proper metric for a radiative issue. Then the so-called Methane Global Warming Potential (GMP) is based on assumed CO2 GWP, which as noted above is likely negligible, but in any case estimates range widely. 8 times CO2 would be more reasonable, before taking into account the fact the atmosphere is an efficient methane sink.

      • AC Osborn permalink
        February 6, 2022 10:18 am

        Can a Methane molecule absorb 84 times as many photons and their energy as a CO2 molecule?
        If it can where is it going to get them from, the atmospheric window, water vapour and CO2 already take care of them all.
        The current concentration of methane is 1879 ppb whereas CO2 is 410 ppm.
        So there are 2182 as many CO2 molecules as there are Methane molecules.
        So their calculations of Methane contributing 2/3rds of the warming of CO2 make no sense at all.t

      • AC Osborn permalink
        February 6, 2022 10:35 am


        Can a Methane molecule absorb 84 times as many photons and their energy as a CO2 molecule?
        If it can where is it going to get them from, the atmospheric window, water vapour and CO2 already take care of them all.
        The current concentration of methane is 1879 ppb whereas CO2 is 410 ppm.
        So there are 218 as many CO2 molecules as there are Methane molecules.
        So their calculations of Methane contributing 2/3rds of the warming of CO2 make no sense at all.

      • February 6, 2022 12:53 pm

        To say methane is 84 times as powerful a greenhouse gas than CO2 is misleading. It is only more powerful PER MOLECULE because there is so little of it there.
        Unlike the CO2 absorption bands, the CH4 bands in the atmosphere are not close to saturation. It is still in the approximately linear region where adding 10% extra methane would result in about 10% extra atmospheric absorption in its absorption bands. This is not true of CO2, which is in the logarithmic region.
        CH4 is not intrinsically able to absorb more radiation than CO2 per molecule.

      • February 6, 2022 1:02 pm

        People on here are still saying that, because something is in low concentration, it can’t absorb much infra red radiation. This is an incorrect viewpoint.
        An IR photon of 15 micrometre wavelength (one of the CO2 absorption peaks) has a mean range of about ONE metre in the atmosphere. This is despite the atmosphere containing only about 400 ppm (by volume) of CO2.
        Think back to school chemistry and recall (say) potassium permanganate solutions. The purple colouration of this chemical is easily visible at miniscule chemical concentrations.
        So please disavow yourselves of this particular mythology. All photon paths out of the atmosphere go through untold trillions of methane and CO2 molecules.

      • February 6, 2022 1:23 pm

      • February 6, 2022 5:05 pm

        Ron Klutz: do you have the original reference for that plot?

      • February 6, 2022 6:53 pm

        It’s on the chart CB.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      February 7, 2022 8:55 am

      Since we don’t actually know the ECS of CO2 how can we know that methane is any times more?

  13. Rasa permalink
    February 5, 2022 2:59 pm

    50% of Global Warming….😳 That is a lot of heavy lifting for 1.8 ppm of methane in the atmosphere. I call out BS.

    • catweazle666 permalink
      February 5, 2022 3:00 pm

      I think it’s called “making stuff up”!
      They’re getting desperate.

  14. Peter Yarnall permalink
    February 5, 2022 3:11 pm

    Why can we not crowdfund at challenge the BBC’s lies in court?

  15. Robert Christopher permalink
    February 5, 2022 3:25 pm


    You mean, the Science isn’t settled!

  16. David Tallboys permalink
    February 5, 2022 4:16 pm

    Blame it on the children for eating baked beans and farting.

  17. February 5, 2022 4:18 pm

    CO2 never was and never will be a problem. The so called Climate Crisis was invented in 1992 at the UN Rio Environmental Conference by the Chair, Maurice Strong. Strong openly stated that the West must be de-industrialized and wealth re-distributed using CO2 as the excuse. The intention was to use the useful idiots in Academia to bring this about by corrupting science to bring about the de-carbonizing of the West to avoid warming of the planet by a couple of degrees.

    CO2 is a trace gas in out atmosphere amounting to 0.04% and human activity share of this is a mere 3%. The ruination of the Western economies and the lifestyle of the people has not been costed or even proven that is is possible to go green with renewable energy which has been proven to be both unreliable and costly with no end in sight, Food and energy poverty are in our future.

    India and China are the main beneficiaries of the West’s lunacy and the massive increase of their coal driven economies negate any efforts by the West to Save the Planet.

    Climate Change has been going on since this planet was created and it will continue to change mainly due to the SUN and not human activity. Ignorant politicians driven by corrupt scientists and eco billionaires, ignorant Media. and Green Energy shysters are the reason for the impetus of the current madness.

    • Rosalie Ashby permalink
      February 5, 2022 6:03 pm

      All the way from little ( but wonderful) New Zealand I concur with every point.
      We in NZ stand to lose everything – with the advance of ‘Marxism” – all supported by our Government! Using a fictitious interpretation of our first contract with the British Sovereign ( Treaty of Waitangi) that there would be a 50/50 ” partnership” with the Crown …. extremist pseuodo academia is destroying our proud and effective democracy. Sad and scary.
      Rosie Ashby

      • M E permalink
        February 6, 2022 12:47 am

        In reluctant defence of our N Z PM I point out that she began her career at the U N in New York, assisting Helen Clark,former N Z PM , I think. The current one is just doing what the U N says. Her scientific education probably being lacking. She doesn’t know that she doesn’t know.

      • Crowcatcher permalink
        February 6, 2022 7:41 am

        Me that is the only truth a politician speaks “I don’t know what I don’t know”!

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      February 5, 2022 9:21 pm

      May I make what sounds like nit-picking but is a serious suggestion considering the extent to which we are trying to convince politicians (and other scientific illiterates) about CO2?
      “CO2 is a trace gas in our atmosphere amounting to 0.04% and human activity share of this is a mere 3%” is quite correct but adding the phrase ‘of that 0.04%’ makes a world of difference when it comes getting a message across. It rules out *any* possibility of misunderstanding.
      Believe me, I speak from experience.

      • jimlemaistre permalink
        February 5, 2022 9:44 pm

        I agree . . . but then add to that that CO2 reduction of 20% according to the Paris accord is O.6% of annual Co2 contributions from all sources 6 tenth’s of one % . . . Here is a visual presentation with sources from IPCC . . .

        When you see this it should bury any doubt from detractors . . .

        My Thoughts . . .

  18. alastairgray29yahoocom permalink
    February 5, 2022 4:39 pm

    Wijngaardenand Happer ” Dependence of Earth’s Thermal Radiation on Five Most
    Abundant Greenhouse Gases” is a right riveting read. Based on a quantum mechanical treatment of greenhouse gases and concludes that methane and CO2 are trivial contributers at current concentrations. I am not aware of any alarmist work of similar calibre. Perhaps someone could enlighten me. The sainted Svante Arhennius (1896, 1905) published his work long before quantum mechanics and I don’t think the luminaries in the field have bothered to update themselves. I may be wrong but if there is a warmista out there who can make a cogent case beyond 97% of climate scientists say that . . . . . then pleaee let me know

  19. David permalink
    February 5, 2022 5:06 pm

    Global cooling is what we should worry about. The increased snow cover would cause positive feedback. We might even have to resort to covering it with soot!

  20. jimlemaistre permalink
    February 5, 2022 5:46 pm

    Methane and Natural Gas are often used as Synonyms, but they are not exactly perfect substitutes. Methane is a colorless, odorless, and flammable greenhouse gas, while Natural gas is primarily methane but also contains ethane, propane, carbon dioxide, and water vapor as well. The ethane is burned off or turned into poly-propylene plastic bags, the propane is stored and sold, the CO2 remains and the water is removed. Now, again, you have . . . Methane.

    Methane is the second most abundant anthropogenic GHG after carbon dioxide (CO2), accounting for about 20 percent of global emissions. Methane is more than 25 times as potent as carbon dioxide at trapping heat in the atmosphere.

    YUP . . . Methane . . . Er . . . Natural Gas is Sooo much better for the environment . . . ??

    OH . . . CO2 from burning natural gas 9% . . . from Coal 12% . . .

    My thoughts

  21. Jordan permalink
    February 5, 2022 7:13 pm

    From the linked article above: “Over a 20-year period it is around 84 times as powerful per unit of mass as carbon dioxide.”
    Noted: “as powerful”.
    Power is the rate of flow of energy. Energy in Joules, and power in Watts (joules per second).
    So what we are talking about here by “powerful” is energy being supplied to the surface. It is argued that methane provides 84 times as much energy to the surface layer as CO2.
    The source of this energy is the atmosphere, through a “blocking” (energy asorbtion) mechanism. What is being blocked is a flow of energy from surface layer.
    The source of the energy (being blocked) is the surface. To argue for a net increase in temperature is to argue that the surface can warm itself. Energy from the surface results in even more energy being returned to the surface.
    Unless we can account for the source of “even more energy”, the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect argument fails to satisfy conservation of energy.
    The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect proposes a perpetual motion machine.

    • Graeme No.3 permalink
      February 6, 2022 5:46 am

      I think that they have confused themselves owing to little or no knowledge. They are told that greenhouse gases TRAP heat therefore they assume that heat is retained and the earth warms up. No proof, it is Dogma.
      If the sun has constant output (astronomers please refrain from interrupting) as we are assured and heat is TRAPPED, then the Earth would be getting quite hot, which it isn’t.
      Even NASA reports that long wave radiation to space (from the top of the atmosphere) measured by satellite is increasing (raising the head exploding point that increasing CO2 is causing cooling).
      The point about surface radiation is supposedly that the radiation doesn’t cause heat loss, but is absorbed by the CO2 in air and half (the original heat) is re-radiated back to earth adding more heat. This then is radiated to the atmosphere in turn and a quarter (of the original heat) is re-radiated back to the earth; the sum is that 2 times the original heat from the sun has now been radiated to the earth – just in time for a new lot of solar energy. As you say a perpetual motion machine (only requiring you to believe and collect the money).

      There is a minor point they ignore is that water (70% of the surface) is a very powerful absorber of IR. It suspect that evaporation is more likely from that liquid surface.

      • Jordan permalink
        February 6, 2022 10:17 am

        Agreed Graeme – the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect is a perpetual motion machine.
        Those in the know claim the models conserve energy, but I understand this is a step at the “top of the atmosphere”. This perpetual motion machine therefore sits below the top of the atmosphere, and the modellers have fooled themselves.
        It is the reason why the predicted “tropospheric hotspot” is not observed in the real world. This pattern exists in all of the models containing the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect, and they code the following process:
        1) the atmosphere absorbs more outgoing IR from the surface;
        2) the additional energy absorbed results in a rise of temperature within the atmosphere;
        3) the rise in temperature within the atmosphere results in an increase in IR radiated from the atmosphere (upward and downward);
        4) the downward fraction IR (about half) returns to the surface to cause increased temperature at the surface layer;
        5) the warmer surface radiates more IR, and the atmosphere absorbs even more IR from the surface = return to step 1 above.
        So that’s the perpetual motion machine: the surface-warms-the-atmosphere-warms-the-surface.
        The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect (the claimed additional warming) can be further explained in terms of power (energy flow). At equilibrium, the atmosphere is radiating ADDITIONAL energy to the surface (compared to a reference case without the addition of GHG). Let’s say the power required to do this is “P” Watts. The atmosphere needs to receive an additional P Watts to sustain this in equilibrium as ADDIONAL upward IR from the surface layer. The atmosphere radiates this both upwards and downwards, which means around half (P/2 Watts) is returned to the surface. The surface is the only source of energy to sustain the P Watts within the atmosphere, but the only source of ADDITIONAL energy is has is P/2 Watts coming from the surface. Adding GHG therefore cannot sustain any increase in surface temperature as a consequence of the proposed radiative processes.
        The impossibility of the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect is the reason why the tropospheric hotspot has never been observed. It is also the reason why it has proved impossible to put a reasonably constrained value on Climate Sensitivity.

      • bobn permalink
        February 6, 2022 2:23 pm

        So radiation from warm earth to colder atmosphere leads to colder atmosphere radiating back to warm the warmer Earth! Hmm didnt Newton write a law saying heat couldnt pass from a colder to a hotter …?

        Also any back radiation will be far less than half. We are dealing with spheres. Cosines and Pye will reduce back radiation and then there is the reflections at small angles, indeed all impact angles<60 can reflect rather than absorb.

        Basically the whole alarmist CO2 absorption warming theory is shot full of holes.

    • February 6, 2022 1:13 pm

      You have it all wrong.
      If you imagine a step-change increase in GHG, the lower atmosphere will warm to a new, higher, EQUILIBRIUM temperature. The temperature increase will then stop.
      One this new equilbrium is established, the top of the atmosphere will radiate to space at the same rate as before, as it must do if temperature is stable and the heat input is the same.

      • Jordan permalink
        February 6, 2022 2:30 pm

        KB. The problem with your position is that it doesn’t conserve energy. My comments above explain, but I’ll go again….
        The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect is about a change due to addition of GHG, and not the underlying Greenhouse Effect. We therefore have to check whether the change of energy flows satisfies energy conservation.
        So let’s say there has been a change of GHG and the atmosphere has reached equilibrium from a starting state. This is what is meant by “incremental” or “delta” in the following
        If the middle of the atmosphere radiates upwards and downwards in equal measure. atmosphere needs delta-P Watts to return 50% of delta-P Watts downward to the surface layer. The other 50% of delta-P Watts goes upwards and off to space.
        The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect argues that the surface layer is the source of delta-P Watts due to an increase in the rate of absorption of outgoing IR. So we know we need to account for delta-P to account for all the energy flowing into the middle atmosphere.
        The surface is the source of this delta-P. So where does the surface get delta-P incremental downwelling IR? The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect suggests it is coming from the atmosphere. But we know the atmosphere is only returning 50% of delta-P. Half the energy is missing.
        According to the old song: “There’s a hole in my bucket …”.

      • February 6, 2022 6:30 pm

        Jordan, I am sure this must be wrong, otherwise adding insulation would also be a perpetual motion machine.
        There are two sealed steel rooms, each identical, and each has an electric heater inside, of the same output. The only difference between the two rooms is that one of them has insulation on its outside.
        Which room will be warmer at equilibrium?
        Does that break conservation of energy?

      • Jordan permalink
        February 6, 2022 10:23 pm

        KB. No, insulation is a different physical process.
        Insulation involves a change of thermal conductivity (or resistance). For a constant supply of energy at P Watts, heat transfer through insulation is characterised by downward-sloping temperature curve from the hot body to the cool body.
        If the cool body is at constant cold temperature, then adding insulation results in a change of slope of temperature, but still always downward sloping. Adding insulation can increase the temperature of the hot body rises for the same P Watts input, but this doesn’t break conservation of energy. It is just a change of properties of the system (increased thermal resistance).
        The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect is a radiative process, and radiative processes always have the source of warming being higher temperature than the warmed body. There must be a similar downward sloping response in all cases.
        The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect doesn’t respect this condition. Have a look at the pattern of predicted change of temperatures in the tropical hotspot. This is a feature of all models of the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect.
        The Enhanced Greenhouse Effect proposes the surface is warmed (delta Ts) from the atmosphere (delta Ta). The tropospheric hotspot can be characterised as a “big red heat lamp in the sky”. This is invented from arguments of amplification through a positive feedback response to the addition of CO2. Amplification is a feature of an “active system” which requires an auxiliary power source to create the amplification of physical quantities (i.e. it takes energy to turn something into more of the same something).
        This is why the Enhanced Greenhouse Effect breaks conservation of energy. There is no auxiliary source of energy to power that big red heat lamp in the sky to create the claimed surface warming. The power it would need (I called this “P” Watts) leaks away as the hotspot can only return 50% of P Watts to the surface. This fact of the matter means the atmospheric response to CO2 must be passive, and not active. There can be no amplification of anything and the big red heat lamp cannot be turned on.
        And what do we consistently find when we have looked for the tropospheric hotspot? It is not observed. There is no big heat lamp in the sky. No evidence of an active response.
        The idea is broken.

      • Phoenix44 permalink
        February 7, 2022 9:05 am

        Its wrong because the radiation to space is not a fixed quantity but dependent on the energy in the atmosphere. Yes, if I put a lid on my saucepan it retains more heat. But that’s a lid. GHGs aren’t a lid. They don’t prevent radiation to space. Same as your insulation example. For the Earth to warm, energy input has to increase or escape of energy has to decrease.

      • February 7, 2022 12:53 pm

        Jordan. No I think insulation is just the same. The language used by the modellers has got you confused saying “the atmosphere warms the surface”. All it is doing is restricting the net flow of heat, just like insulation.
        Imagine those steel rooms again, but this time both of them are in a vacuum chamber and one of them is surrounded by a reflective foil screen. The one with the reflective screen will warm up to a higher equilibrium temperature. You could say the reflective screen is warming the room, because it is returning some of the energy as reflected IR. But once equilibrium is established, the energy flow from outside the screen is exactly the same as for the unscreened room. Energy is conserved.
        If what you say is correct, do you not think a physicist such as Prof. Happer would have noticed it a long time ago?

      • February 7, 2022 1:01 pm

        Pheonix, I’m afraid GHG’s do indeed prevent IR radiation to space. That is exactly what they do.
        To have an increasing temperature trend, the input does indeed have to exceed the output. GHGs decrease the output, the input remains the same, so warming is measured. As the temperature increases, so does the output radiation to space.
        At some point, due to the increased temperature, the output will increase to equal the input, and we have a new equilibrium. The temperature is higher, and the output equals the input. Energy is conserved, no problem.

      • Jordan permalink
        February 7, 2022 6:57 pm

        KB I can’t dance round in circles with you on this thread, so I leave you to have a think about it. The main thing you need to focus on is the balance of energy from for IR returned to the surface, and that tropospheric hotspot. The hotspot is “amplification” of the warming (Santer used to call it “vertical amplification” – see Santer 1995). We can’t have amplification of surface warming due to CO2 when the source of energy is the warming of the same surface. That’s a breach of conservation of energy. This my last comment on this thread.

  22. It doesn't add up... permalink
    February 5, 2022 9:55 pm

    Methane levels in Earth’s atmosphere are slowly increasing, as shown in Fig. 7. If the current rate of increase, about 0.0076 ppm/year for the past decade or so, were to continue unchanged it would take about 270 years to double the current concentration of C{i} = 1.8 ppm. But, as one can see from Fig.7, methane levels have stopped increasing for years at a time (for example, between 2000 and 2008) , so it is hard to be confident about future concentrations. Methane concentrations may never double, but if they do, WH [1] show that this would only increase the forcing by 0.8 W m−2. This is a tiny fraction of representative total forcings at midlatitudes of about 140 W m−2 at the tropopause and 120 W m−2
    at the top of the atmosphere.

    The reason that the per-molecule forcing of methane is some 30 times larger than that of carbon dioxide for current concentrations is saturation of the absorption bands. “Saturation” means that adding more molecules causes very little change in Earth’s thermal radiation to space. The current density of CO2 molecules is some 200 times greater than that of CH4 molecules, so the absorption bands of CO2 are much more saturated than those of CH4. In the dilute “optically-thin” limit, WH [1] show that the tropospheric forcing power per molecule is P{i} = 0.51×10−22 W for CH4, and P{i} = 2.73×10−22 W for CO2. Each CO2 molecule in the dilute limit causes about 5 times more forcing increase than an additional molecule of CH4, which is only a “super greenhouse gas” because there is so little in the atmosphere, compared to CO2.

    Click to access MethaneClimate_WijnGaardenHapper.pdf

    • Joe Public permalink
      February 6, 2022 11:45 am

      Thanks for the links to W+H’s research, IDAU.

    • February 6, 2022 10:24 pm

      There you go, Prof. Happer says what I was telling you all above. He explains it so much better though!

  23. Mikehig permalink
    February 5, 2022 11:23 pm

    No mention of water vapour?
    Does that mean that it is assumed to be a constant factor?
    I thought that the global warming case rested partly on positive feedback driven by increasing levels of water vapour.

    • jimlemaistre permalink
      February 5, 2022 11:56 pm

      Mr. Mike Hig,

      You are the man who asks about ‘Water Vapor’ . . . Try this . . .

      The biggest issue is NOT the CO2 per say it is what is attached to CO2 that is helping Planet Earth to warm faster. One of the first questions little children will ask is, Daddy, what makes the clouds ? The answer is water, as a gas then the #2 ingredient is Dust . . . Fine Dust. This one piece of the puzzle is often omitted in the answer . . .

      The industrial consumption of Fossil fuels that produces energy of all types leads to MASSIVE quantities of ‘Fine Dust’ within the flue gases. This can and does cause increased cloud formation especially at Equatorial regions where evaporation from the Oceans is at it’s highest, Globally. Especially now with all the glacial melt, during our Naturally accruing warming period. This water all accumulates in the Ocean Gyers and along the Equator. The atmosphere at the Equator is 17 km. above the surface, while above the Northern hemisphere it is only 14 km. In this spinning vortex above the surface, water and dust accumulate into cloud formations that carry ever increasing water volumes and heat energy north within storm systems which then deposit that heat energy from the Equator as rain or snow.

      One example in 2021 is Hurricane Claudette. It deposited 9″ of rain in New Orleans, tracked North East leaving vast amounts of water in it’s wake . . . It continued to track North East over the Atlantic then it struck Europe. Remember the flooding in Europe early last year? Well, the same thing happened to Vancouver in mid November 2021. That was the tail end of a typhoon that had struck Indonesia just a short time before. We received 9″ of rain in one day, 12” in one week ! At the time they called it ‘An Atmospheric River’.

      Planet Earth is a ‘centrifuge’. Everything spins. the Atmosphere, the Oceans, even the Molten Core of the Earth . . . the Mantle by way of convection from the outer core to the crust and back again. the Atmosphere of Planet Earth is spinning faster than the outer crust of the earth. The planet is spinning at about 1,670 km/h (1,037.5 mph). The temperature gradient is derived from the differential solar heating of the spherical surface of the planet. The surface is generally warmer at the equator and grows progressively cooler as we move poleward. The centrifugal effects of the earth’s rotation, the Coriolis force, deflects the south to north transport of heat and cloud formations from the equator to the poles into the West to East motion of the jet streams.

      Humans produce more and more ‘Fine Dust’ from burning Fossil Fuels predominantly between the two jet streams closest to the Equator. That dust enters the vortex that is our atmosphere and collects with water at the Equator creating clouds. These clouds within the atmosphere act as a store of energy. That store of energy in the cloud cover generated, contains the heat energy radiating out from the crust and from the Earth’s core . . . Global Warming . . . Increased heat retention . . . increased storm activity . . . increased precipitation . . . all from the Natural cycles of water aided and abetted by the ‘Fine DUST’ entering the atmosphere thanks to the Human consumption of Fossil Fuels . . . and NOT the CO2 per say, the Fine Particulates going up the chimney along with the CO2.

      This dust is easy to control . . . if our ‘Elitist Fetish’ with CO2 could be pushed aside for one minute . . . in favor of installing Scrubbers, Electrostatic Precipitators and Nitrous Oxide burners on every industrial smokestack in the world . . . Then . . . real change would come . . . cleaning up the air we breathe and the world we live in. This technology has been broadly available for over 30 years . . . for some strange reason . . . environmentalists NEVER advocate such a move. That would mean ‘crawling into bed with the enemy’ . . . the fossil fuel industry.

      You still want to believe in CO2 . . . go ahead . . . but the dust that can sooo easily be removed form the burning of fossil fuels gets eviscerated by this elitist obsession among environmentalists . . . with CO2 . . . CO2 never was and never will be pollution. Frankly for years it has been at dangerously low levels for sustaining life on Planet Earth.

      For 10,000 years during 18 periods of warming CO2 has Never led or followed Climate Change . . . Why would that change now ?

      Environmentalists do not want to clean up Planet Earth . . . Their primary goal is to destroy the Fossil Fuel Industry . . . Nuff Said . . .

      My thoughts . . .

      • David V permalink
        February 6, 2022 3:27 pm

        Not sure the fine dust comes only from chimneys – I remember stories about reports of strange lights over American cities following 9/11 when all air flights were stopped for several days. Those lights were stars…

      • Mikehig permalink
        February 6, 2022 5:34 pm

        jimlemaistre: give it a rest!
        I can do without the rant and “You still want to believe in CO2….go ahead” when my comment was about the absence of water vapour in the IPCC segment posted by Paul.

      • Vernon E permalink
        February 6, 2022 6:47 pm


    • jimlemaistre permalink
      February 6, 2022 5:27 pm

      Funny bout that . . . Eh ? . . . And then there was light . . .

  24. February 5, 2022 11:43 pm

    Before we get swamped by the assumption that we are getting the truth about higher temperatures, just pause and ask “what if it is yet more fake news?”
    I’ve analysed Australian data and fully agree that the large cities are getting warmer – up to 7 degrees C over 100 years! However the typical isolated country locations show little trend – some up a little and some down a little.
    Same story in the USA – IMHO you can trust this fellow.

  25. Cheshire Red permalink
    February 6, 2022 9:14 am

    Is this another attempt to introduce a ‘best supporting role’ to underpin CO2 theory?

    It’s happened before with ‘ocean acidification’ – which I thought was a particularly brilliant scam; it sounds terrifying! – and many others. Sea level rise, Arctic sea ice, polar bears, glaciers and all the rest were co-opted in to ‘tackle climate change’ in the early 2000’s – just as warming stopped as the Pause took hold. An amazing coincidence, eh?

    Methane will thus become another climate bogeyman, with endless opportunities to double down on the climate racket.

    There’s no way they’re throwing the towel in on ‘carbon’ either, as that would discredit or even outright falsify decades of CO2 propaganda, so now there’s methane too!

    Oh, how will we ever cope?

  26. February 6, 2022 9:37 am

    Are they pointing the finger at the rice paddy fields yet?

    At between 50 and 100 million tonnes of methane a year, rice agriculture is a big source of atmospheric methane, possibly the biggest of man-made methane sources.

    • Up2snuff permalink
      February 6, 2022 3:01 pm

      Then there are mosquitoes. Outdoing humans on a basis of nine to one, according to mathemetician and AGW/CC sceptic Johnny Ball. Those same mosquitoes cause misery for humans when they infect them with malaria. In addition, mosquito habitats also emit methane so if you believe CO2 and methane are big problems for the world, there is your answer. Drain the swamps!

  27. dave permalink
    February 6, 2022 10:24 am

    “Frankly,, my dear, I don’t give a damn!”

  28. Mad Mike permalink
    February 6, 2022 10:41 am

    This is a non-story. The original BBC article cited “experts” “In terms of benefits for the environment, the scientists estimate that stopping the leaks would prevent between 0.005C and 0.002C of warming.”

    Those figures, as well as being estimates, represent an almost unmeasurable temperature change. It’s almost like running a story about Mrs Jones’s leaking tap affecting the level of the local reservoir.

    The angst among the comments was palpable which shows how unthinking most of the Alarmists are.

  29. Jack Broughton permalink
    February 6, 2022 12:08 pm

    There is only one publication that used scientific methods to calculate the effect of CO2 and CH4 on the atmosphere and that was David Coe’s paper: covered in detail on this site a few months back. This debunked the claimed massive effect of CO2 and showed that CH4 was a negligible contributor.

    The IPCC methodology is truly pathetic science, which reflects the simple lack of understanding of thermal radiation by most scientists (it is certainly a difficult topic). This lack of understanding led to the acceptance of second-rate theory as proof especially when imaginative “feedback” ideas were added.

    The underlying physics of the Radiative Forcing Factor have always been week but gave a good basis for a fear campaign: as per the Booker-North Fear-campaign Laws. The Chinese and Indians are proving the CO2 fallacy daily!

    How long have we got to save the world, Flash?

  30. Sylvia permalink
    February 6, 2022 2:27 pm

    I would NOT believe one word written by the BBC on this subject. They are DESPERATE for global warming and have built all their “religious beliefs” on this LIE.

  31. Up2snuff permalink
    February 6, 2022 2:55 pm

    I suppose the IPCC now believe that the other half of Global Warming is caused by Nitrous Oxide while the first half of it is caused by CO2. As that adds up to 1.5, I guess it dovetails neatly with 1.5° of Warming and the desire to “keep 1.5 alive”. The IPCC really don’t know what they are talking about, do they?

    So much for ‘settled science’ and 97/98% of scientists being in agreement.

  32. Harry Passfield permalink
    February 6, 2022 6:09 pm

    Whatever you do, do NOT watch tonight’s edition of the Government’s latest Green propaganda, AKA, CountryFile if you value your TV. This was absolutely the very worst pitch for CC that I have ever had to watch. It’s no longer about methane; now, they are going mad about sheep pee: measuring the amount of NoX in their urine – as, you guessed it, it’s been discovered it is a large contributor to CC!!!
    Furthermore, there are all the hedges to worry about. Now they are ‘carbon stores’ and farmers will soon be paid per unit length of hedge and they will be able to trade (!!!!) the carbon determined to be locked up in them!!!
    And, in every mention of CC, it is ALWAYS, ALWAYS a very bad thing. As if, going back into an ice age would be a good thing!
    I’m going to lie down for a bit now because complaining about this programme to the BBC or OfCOM would be completely futile.

    • David V permalink
      February 6, 2022 8:56 pm

      Cording to this very post NOX has a negative contribution to warming…

  33. February 6, 2022 10:57 pm

    Until around 1950 we have been told that nearly all the warming must be natural, since man’s emissions were too low to have any effect. So this accounts for around 0.5 degrees C. Of the remaining 0.6 degrees they claim over half can be attributed to man. So just 0.3 degrees to split between CO2 and methane. This is within the margin of error in the measurement.

  34. cookers52 permalink
    February 6, 2022 11:42 pm

    The planet copes with the organic waste of 7.9 billion people without any problem.

  35. Peter Yarnall permalink
    February 7, 2022 9:56 am

    Did anyone else read last week, that vegans break wind (methane) seven times more than meat eaters!

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