Monday, November 22, 2010

Venus: No Greenhouse Effect

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The flip side of the entrenched incompetence in science today is that all it takes is scientific competence to make revolutionary discoveries, or fundamental corrections to current dogma. Being a competent physicist rather than an incompetent climate scientist (which 97% of them demonstrably are), I was able recently to post an answer on to a question about the greenhouse effect on Venus, an update to which I give here:

Surprisingly to most, there is no greenhouse effect at all, and you can prove it for yourself.

From the temperature and pressure profiles for the Venusian atmosphere, you can confirm that, at the altitude where the pressure = 1000 millibars, which is the sea level pressure of Earth, the temperature of the Venusian atmosphere is 66ºC = 339K.

This is much warmer than the temperature at the surface of the Earth (at pressure = 1000 millibars), which is about 15ºC = 288K. HOWEVER

Venus is closer to the Sun, and gets proportionally more power from it. Earth is 93 million miles from the Sun, on average, while Venus is only 67.25 million. Since the intensity of the Sun's radiation decreases with distance from it as 1 over r-squared, Venus receives (93/67.25) squared, or 1.91 times the power per unit area that Earth receives, on average.

Since the radiating temperature of an isolated body in space varies as the fourth-root of the power incident upon it, by the Stefan-Boltzmann law, the radiating temperature of Venus should be the fourth-root of 1.91 (or the square-root of 93/67.25) = 1.176 times that of the Earth. Furthermore, since the atmospheric pressure varies as the temperature, the temperature at any given pressure level in the Venusian atmosphere should be 1.176 times the temperature at that same pressure level in the Earth atmosphere, INDEPENDENT OF THE DIFFERENT LEVELS OF INFRARED ABSORPTION in the two atmospheres. In particular, the averaged temperature at 1000 millibars on Earth is about 15ºC = 288K, so the corresponding temperature on Venus, WITHOUT ANY GREENHOUSE EFFECT, should be 1.176 times that, or 339K. But this is just 66ºC, the temperature we actually find there from the temperature and pressure profiles for Venus.

[Note: The derivation of the radiating temperature above is for absolute temperature, in degrees Kelvin (K), so the 1.176 factor relates the Kelvin temperatures, not the Celsius temperatures.]

So there is no greenhouse effect. You have just proved that climate science is utterly wrong to think otherwise. This is the scandal that so many "experts" in climate science, and all the scientific authorities, will not face. Listen to the physicists that tell you there is no greenhouse effect; they know without having to go to the Venus data -- and I am one of them. The continuing incompetence on this vital point among so many scientists, for more than a century, is amazing, and tragic.

Here is a table more precisely comparing the temperatures at various pressures in Earth's atmosphere (the standard atmosphere) with the corresponding temperatures in Venus's atmosphere:

(updated 12/02/10)

My uncertainty in finding T_Venus from the graphs is +/- 1.4 K, so any error less than about 1.2 K (in the last column) is negligible. I don't know why the comparison falters slightly between 600 and 300 mb, or why it improves suddenly at 200 mb (~60 km altitude), but the Venus cloud top is given as 58 km, between the 300 and 200 mb levels.

The Venus atmosphere is 96.5% carbon dioxide, and supposedly superheated due to a runaway greenhouse effect, yet that portion of it within the pressure bounds of the Earth atmosphere is remarkably like the Earth in temperature. This is student-level analysis, and could not have been neglected by climate scientists, if they were not rendered incompetent by their dogmatic belief in the greenhouse hypothesis. (Again, the overwhelming extent of fundamental incompetence exhibited by scientists today is the real underlying story.) This result also flies in the face of those who would say the clouds of Venus reflect much of the incident solar energy, and that therefore it cannot get 1.91 times the power per unit area received by the Earth -- the direct evidence presented here is that its atmosphere does, in fact, get that amount of power, remarkably closely. This in fact indicates that the Venusian atmosphere is heated mainly by incident infrared radiation from the Sun, which is not reflected but absorbed by Venus's clouds, rather than by warming first of the planetary surface. (It also indicates that the Earth atmosphere is substantially warmed the same way, during daylight hours, by direct solar infrared irradiation, and that the temperature profile, or lapse rate, for any planetary atmosphere is relatively oblivious to how the atmosphere is heated, whether from above or below.) This denies any possibility of a "greenhouse effect" on Venus (or on Earth), much less a "runaway" one. This has already been pointed out recently by physicists Gerlich and Tscheuschner, who have written succinctly, "...since the venusian atmosphere is opaque to visible light, the central assumption of the greenhouse hypotheses [sic] is not obeyed." Yet they are ridiculed by climate scientists, who thus behave like spoiled children who refuse to be chastised by their parents.

Update March 14, 2012: This analysis is so easy, the result so immediately amazing, and the interpretation just above so obvious to me, yet the opposition to accepting it so universal and so determined, that I was led to unconsciously accept, partially but nevertheless wrongly, the premise of incompetent critics, that my findings were invalid because I had not "corrected for albedo", or in other words had wrongly assumed the Earth and Venus atmospheres were blackbodies, absorbing all the radiation incident upon them. I inadvertently got caught up, over time, in claiming the Earth-plus-atmosphere system behaves like a blackbody (although I never claimed it absorbs all the radiation incident upon it, as a blackbody is defined to do, and as the incompetent dismissers of my analysis have determinedly, dogmatically insisted). Although this has thoroughly hindered the acceptance of my analysis, my initial approach to the problem was in fact sound (even if too simple-minded for most), and my above, initial interpretation is quite correct, and in fact unavoidable, although it is not a complete statement. The complete interpretation, which I have stressed (as a logical fact) ever since, both in comments below this article, and on other internet sites, is that the two atmospheres must DIRECTLY absorb the SAME FRACTION of the incident solar radiation. For, supposing that both atmospheres do so absorb, and are solely warmed by, the same fraction (f), and given that the ratio of the two planets' distances from the Sun--Venus/Earth--is (A), the governing formula becomes, for the Earth and Venus atmospheres in turn

This result is independent of the fraction f absorbed, which is why naively approaching the problem as if f = 1 nevertheless gives, without the need to even consciously consider albedo beforehand, the amazingly clear result that the temperature ratio depends only--and amazingly, quite precisely--upon the ratio of the two planets' distances from the Sun. Any "expert", upon seeing this amazing result, should quickly have realized it means both atmospheres must absorb the same fraction of the incident solar radiation, and be warmed only by that fraction. So I apologize for not presenting the explicit equations above sooner, for it would have saved me stumbling into error later, and embarrassing my few defenders, in my "blackbody" defense of the original analysis--but I insist my critics have all been more incompetent than I in this matter, in refusing to even consider my correct interpretation, because of what they merely assumed was a fatal error. There was no physical error in my original analysis, because the temperature ratio I obtained was an empirical fact, and the absorbed power ratio I implied from that was a logical fact (simply stated, Venus's atmosphere DOES absorb 1.91 times the power that Earth's atmosphere does, as their temperature ratio shows--and that ratio is precisely that predicted simply from the ratio of their distances from the Sun). Since the two atmospheres DO, factually, absorb the same fraction of the solar radiation incident upon them, there was, in reality, no physical reason to extend the analysis by "correcting for albedo". But I seriously underestimated the level of determined ignorance--alias incompetence--of the "experts", and dropped part way down to their level for a time.

Another way to look at the Venus/Earth data is this:

Venus is 67.25 million miles from the Sun, the Earth, 93 million.

The radiating temperature of Venus should be 1.176 times that of the Earth.

Without ANY greenhouse effect as promulgated by the IPCC, at any given pressure within the range of the Earth atmosphere, the temperature of the Venus atmosphere should be 1.176 times that of the corresponding Earth atmosphere.

The facts:
at 1000 millibars (mb), T_earth=287.4 (K), T_venus=338.6, ratio=1.178
at 900 mb, T_earth=281.7, T_venus=331.4, ratio=1.176
at 800 mb, T_earth=275.5, T_venus=322.9, ratio=1.172
at 700 mb, T_earth=268.6, T_venus=315.0, ratio=1.173
at 600 mb, T_earth=260.8, T_venus=302.1, ratio=1.158
at 500 mb, T_earth=251.9, T_venus=291.4, ratio=1.157
at 400 mb, T_earth=241.4, T_venus=278.6, ratio=1.154
at 300 mb, T_earth=228.6, T_venus=262.9, ratio=1.150
at 200 mb, T_earth=211.6, T_venus=247.1, ratio=1.168
(Venus temperatures are +/- 1.4K, Earth temp. are from std. atm)

The actual ratio overall is 1.165 +/- 0.015 = 0.991 x 1.176. It does not vary from the no-greenhouse theoretical value at any point by more than about 2%.

There is no sign whatever of a greenhouse effect on either planet. The fact that the temperature ratios are so close to that predicted solely by their relative distances from the Sun tells us that both atmospheres must be warmed, overall, essentially in the same way, by direct IR solar irradiation from above, not by surface emissions from below. Keeping it simple, the atmospheres must be like sponges, or empty bowls, with the same structure (hydrostatic lapse rate), filled with energy by the incident solar radiation to their capacity to hold that energy.

There is no greenhouse effect on Venus with 96.5% carbon dioxide, and none on the Earth with just a trace of carbon dioxide.


  1. Mr. Huffman: Very interesting. How would it be if you turn it the other way around and go down to the surface of Venus? With more than 90 times the pressure of sea surface on earth, wouldn't this be considerably warmer than the actually 464 degrees Celsius?

  2. The primary point of this article is that we have to compare atmospheric temperatures at equal pressures in the two atmospheres, and when we do that we find the Venus atmospheric temperature is always just 17% higher than the corresponding (same pressure level) temperature in Earth's atmosphere -- and that essentially constant factor is due solely to the two planets' relative distances from the Sun, nothing else (in particular, not due to the great difference in the amount of carbon dioxide in the two atmospheres). There is no such comparison to be made with the surface temperature of Venus, precisely because the pressure there is far outside the range of Earth's atmospheric pressure. From the results of the comparison I have done, we can say that if Earth had much more atmosphere, so that its surface pressure was equal to Venus's surface pressure, then we would expect the 463C surface temperature of Venus to be 17% higher than the surface temperature of the Earth with that much atmosphere.

    The precise factor is 1.176. Note that the Venus atmospheric temperature is actually slightly cooler than 1.176 times the Earth's, over part of the range of pressures compared here. As intimated in the article, this is likely due to thick clouds in that portion, with liquid water in them that would sequester enough heat energy to depress the temperature a few degrees from the precise 1.176 factor predicted by the distances from the Sun. Wherever the atmosphere is free of such water (presumably in the form of dilute sulfuric acid, as has been reported), that precise 1.176 factor should be closely followed, as I have reported here.

  3. I like your idea, but...
    Since you are using a multiple of Earth's temp as a comparison, aren't to thus including any GH effect on Earth as part of the basis? So in effect saying that if there is a GHE on Earth there is one on Venus, and vice versa?

  4. Hello, Brian,

    My analysis does not just pluck "a multiple of Earth's temperature" out of thin air. It investigates the simplest physical hypothesis. It calculates the expected Venus/Earth temperature ratio, over a broad range of Earth atmospheric pressures, if the only contributing factor is the two planets' mean distances from the Sun (their common power source), and finds that this minimal hypothesis is precisely confirmed by both planetary atmospheres. Any attempt to explain this confirmation by another, more complicated hypothesis, will involve unrealistic assumptions, and a monumentally unlikely coincidence of several supposed additional factors having the same effect as no additional factors at all. For example, in the analysis, not only does the amount of CO2 not enter in (Earth has 0.04%, Venus a whopping 96.5%), but the albedo (from either cloud tops or the planetary surface) does not either (Venus has dense clouds that reflect much of the incident visible radiation, while Earth does not, and Earth's surface is 70% deep ocean, while Venus is solid crust). The real atmospheres don't care at all about these great differences in the two atmospheres and planetary surfaces, they only care, and quite precisely, about their distances from the Sun. So think of all the factors you can which might possibly affect the temperature, and then look again at the analysis, which shows they are not in fact effective overall.

    Another way of looking at it: You are essentially saying, suppose that the multiplicative effect on the temperature due to the 0.04% CO2 in Earth's atmosphere is equal to the multiplicative effect of the 96.5% CO2 on Venus. That is obviously an unrealistic assumption, that the multiplicative effect of any amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is already reached by a concentration of 0.04% -- in fact, between 0.028% (the pre-industrial level of CO2) and 0.04%, as far as an anthropogenic effect is concerned. No matter how you try to slice it, there can be neither an additional warming effect (a "runaway" effect) on Venus, due to Venus's almost pure CO2 atmosphere, nor any further greenhouse effect with added CO2 in the Earth's atmosphere. It is then but a small mental step to accept that, in reality, as my analysis very clearly and simply shows, there is no greenhouse effect whatsoever, of warming due to increases in atmospheric CO2, for any concentration of "greenhouse gases". Nor is there such an effect for surface absorption followed by surface emission, followed by atmospheric absorption and back radiation -- the current, complicated (!) "consensus" theory of the greenhouse effect. Thus my analysis enables one to immediately determine not only that there is no greenhouse effect, but that the atmospheres of Venus and Earth are both warmed, overall, simply by direct absorption of the same infrared portion of the incident solar radiation, not by the more complicated process of first warming of the planetary surface as most scientists believe. Most scientists appear to think that such infrared absorption, by itself, proves the greenhouse effect -- hence, scientists like me who deny the greenhouse effect are seen as denying an obvious physical phenomenon -- but of course if the warming is by direct absorption of solar infrared radiation, the effect is merely to fill up the heat-retaining atmosphere to its ability to hold the heat (as determined by the hydrostatic, or "ocean of air", hypothesis, which imposes a simple temperature lapse rate on the bulk of the atmosphere -- see my previous posts, which explain that the real effect of infrared absorption and emission in the atmosphere is to enable a more efficient heat flow in accordance with the governing lapse rate, not to trap or slow down heat transfer to space).

  5. You should submit this to WUWT as a feature article. Perhaps remove the bits about climate scientists to encourage them to read the paper. Maybe add a graph showing the results visually, as this helps a lot of folks to grasp the idea.

    This is the single most convincing piece of evidence that I have seen that atmospheric temperature is independent of CO2 levels.

    Not all scientists are blind. Present them with convincing evidence. Like sales, the customer has to hear about it, read about it, talk about it, see it, touch it before they will consider buying.

  6. I have submitted the analysis in a letter to "Physics Today" (on February 7, 2011), but have gotten no response.

  7. This article is very, very interesting, and totally correct in my opinion, because the scientific discovery by dr. Huffman, for a factor of 1.17 of atmosphere heating, for Venus in comparison with Earth, is a further evidence that GHE has no scientific ground, and no "backradiation" or "trapping" of IR radiations by atmospheric gases can heat further the surface of planets, but it’s all (or almost) connected to the quantity of energy released by the Sun into the atmosphere of a planet, according to the basic 1st law of thermodynamics: JQ = W + ΔU.

    I would say that the discovery by Huffman is somehow complementary to the one from Miskolczi, in which some years ago he proved mathematically that inside a physical entity in hydrostatic equilibrium like Earth athmosphere, any changes of global averages temperatures can be caused just by changes in quantity of outside thermal energy coming from Sun, and NOT by simple changes in the composition of gases (like CO2), because density, thermal gradient, mass, gravitation, etc. are dominant factors in the Earth atmosphere, and any local changes (example: eruptions of volcanos, and increase in temperatures in the top of troposphere) trigger an "equilibrating" mechanism, and so whenever – for instance - a volcanic eruption makes top atmosphere temperatures higher, than surface temperatures are lowering, etc.

    That’s very interesting, because it’s the evidence that GHE is a totally non-physical theory and it can be disproved in several ways.

    I myself found another way to disprove the GHE on Venus, by observing that on Venus you have THE SAME temperatures, both on the radiated emisphere by Sun, and in the dark one.

    Take into account that dark emisphere does not receive ANY solar radiation for 120 days!

    And so, why there is no difference between temperatures in the two sides of Venus?

    Why temperatures in the dark emisphere do not drop, without solar radiation?

    Please, consider also that surface winds on Venus surface are very slow, and so there is no "convective transportation" of heat between the radiated and dark emisphere at surface.

    The only possible explaination, is that on Venus surface huge density (65-67 Kg/m^3) of gases, huge atmospheric mass (nearly 96 times Earth atmosphere), and huge pressures (92 bars vs. 1 bars on Earth), are strong enough to heat the surface up to 737° K average (464° C), and that’s can be easily calculated by using the universal state equation of perfect gases: PV = nRT

    (see the calculation in the last post in Steve Goddard’s blog

    Of course, on Venus this is possible just because you have a very simple situation, only one gas 96.5% CO2 (+ traces of some others), while on Earth equation of perfect gases is useless, due to the water cycle, and the other chemical reactions connected with water (condensation, snows, rains, etc.) in the rarefied atmosphere.

    I would like to underline very strongly that my analysis is NOT in contradiction with the one above from Huffman, because his analys is correct, but can explain the non existence of GHE just in the radiated side of Venus, and of course here on Earth.

    But the problem is: "and what about the dark emisphere of Venus?", and so I think that temperatures in the dark emisphere can be explained just by pressures, density and atmospheric mass (i.e. general state equation of gases).

    Alberto Miatello

  8. Hello, Alberto,

    Yes, the observation that the dark hemisphere on Venus is as hot as the lighted one is a good one, since it underscores the fact that the temperature profile of a planetary atmosphere is determined quite simply by considering the atmosphere as like the ocean, with pressure (and hence temperature) increasing with depth. (Thus Venus's surface temperature is much greater than Earth's, simply because its atmosphere is much deeper than Earth's, and can hold much more heat.) This is known as the hydrostatic model of the atmosphere, which enforces a quite general "temperature lapse rate" structure upon the atmosphere, as long recognized in the definition of the Earth's own Standard Atmosphere. Everything else -- winds, precipitation, clouds and the water cycle, even day and night -- is secondary.

    So what you have said is basically what I wrote in my previous post on the greenhouse effect:

    "The temperature profile of the atmosphere is dictated solely by gravity acting on the ocean of air and the specific heat of the air, which imposes a temperature "lapse rate" (a declining temperature) with height given by -g/c, a constant rate, where g is the acceleration due to gravity and c is the specific heat. Note that this is entirely independent of the presence of any IR absorption by gases in the atmosphere. The available heat energy must be distributed in accordance with that constant lapse rate, and IR radiation is just one pathway for the heat to be distributed. Thus, IR absorption and emission in the atmosphere can only enable more efficient (faster) heat transport through the atmosphere, they cannot trap heat, or slow it down."

    Presumably, in this simple view, both the great mass of Venus's atmosphere and its greater efficiency of heat transfer around the planet (due to its almost pure CO2 composition), account for the equal temperatures in both lighted and dark hemispheres.

    The fact that Earth's (and Venus's) troposphere exhibits the simple temperature lapse rate structure, should have ruled out, from the very beginning, the greenhouse effect hypothesized by climate scientists. I know it quickly convinced me so, when I came across it just last year. But the Venus/Earth comparison makes it obvious, and definitive. It also rules out the hypothesis (of Velikovsky) that Venus's heat is due to an internal heat, in addition to the Sun's effect, since only the latter is necessary to explain the Venus/Earth temperature ratio.

  9. The high pressure makes the carbon dioxide becomes a hypercritical gas that works as a supercoolant, not as a warmer. At lower partial pressures, like its pressure on the surface of the Earth, the carbon dioxide has a very low emissivity/absorptivity potential, which makes it a coolant, not a warmer, of the surface and the atmosphere.

    The greenhouse effect by carbon dioxide is not true.

  10. Hello, Biocab,

    That is an interesting theory, perhaps, but I want my readers to understand that evidence trumps theory, and decisive evidence trumps all, even a "friendly" theory. In your case, the Venus/Earth temperature comparison shows not only that Venus is not warmer than it would be with less CO2, but that Earth is not cooler. Their temperatures at any given pressure level depend only on their distances from the Sun. No theory is needed to understand that, it is obvious from the data, as I have shown as simply as possible. So increased atmospheric CO2 neither warms nor cools, it only increases the efficiency of heat transfer within the atmosphere, distributing the available heat in accordance with the governing temperature lapse rate more quickly, but not to a different temperature-versus-pressure profile. The fact that the dark side of Venus is as hot as the sunlit side confirms this understanding, again very simply, as I pointed out in my previous post.

  11. Thanks for considering my post is friendly.

    Well, it's not a hypothesis, but it's not important to the purpose of your article.

    Regarding the amount of energy that each planet receives from the Sun, here some data that demonstrates that you are correct (not friendly, but impartial):

    Venus receives 2644.5 W/m^2 of solar radiation.
    The Earth receives 1396.42 W/m^2 of solar radiation.

    Venus receives 1.9 times much more solar radiation than the Earth. So your argument is correct.

  12. Thanks, Biocab, but two points need to be made. First, without knowing where you got these numbers, we don't know whether they are strictly experimental observations, or theoretical calculations (the Earth number certainly agrees with widely quoted observations). Second, it is important for readers to understand that we know Venus receives, on average, 1.9 times the power per unit area that Earth receives, simply from their relative distances from the Sun, as my article discussed. What is truly remarkable is, a good portion of that power is reflected back into space by Venus's thick cloud cover (which makes the planet particularly bright to Earth observers), yet the Venus atmosphere is still heated by 1.9 times the power that heats the Earth atmosphere, as the temperature data shows. Thus we know that the visible portion of the Sun's radiation is not what heats the two atmospheres (because Venus doesn't take in 1.9 times as much visible light as the Earth, it takes in substantially less). Both atmospheres do, however, absorb infrared, and the comparison I have made shows they both must absorb the same portion of the incident infrared from the Sun, thus preserving the 1.9 power ratio calculated from their distances from the Sun. Furthermore, they must absorb this portion directly, not after absorption and emission from the surface, since the surfaces of Earth and Venus are likewise very different (deep ocean vs. solid crust) and would take up different fractions of the infrared, which again would spoil the 1.9 power ratio that is in fact indicated by the Venus/Earth temperature comparison. That the atmospheres must both be warmed by direct absorption of incident infrared radiation, rather than by prior warming of the planetary surface, is directly counter to common scientific belief, and is just as important as the primary finding that there is no greenhouse effect observed on either Earth or Venus. This underscores how badly "consensus" science has erred in understanding the thermodynamics of planetary atmospheres.

  13. Thanks for your response to my query; it was intended to allow you to deal with that possible objection. Clearly it would be a bass-ackward way of analysing the data, but much ackwarder stuff has received broad circulation and acceptance.


  14. Harry, I am impressed by your very clear explanation of the lapse rate phenomenon as being due to a combination of gravity and the intensity of incident radiation from the Sun, as exemplified by the common effect it has on the very different atmospheres of Earth and Venus. It's a neat and satisfyingly simple hypothesis based on sound science and is to me much more convincing than the CO2 theory based on "re-radiation".

    Where I come unstuck is:

    1. My understanding is that diatomic gasses cannot radiate effectively at the atmosphere's comparatively low temperatures. If the tri-atomic gasses H2O, CO2 and NO2 are not involved, how is the Earth's atmosphere, consisting largely of diatomic gases (nitrogen and oxygen), able to radiate back to space the energy it picks up from the Sun without those gases having to heat up to enormous temperatures. On the ither hand, if the triatomic gases ARE involved, changing their proportions in the atmosphere would surely affect the energy balance and therefore the surface temperature!

    2. How does your hypothesis explain the 33degC discrepancy between the Earth's theoretical black body surface temperature of -18degC,  which assumes it has no atmosphere but nevertheless takes into account an albedo of 30% (to allow for real-world cloud cover, etc.) and it's actual measured temperature of +15degC, the difference being conventionally attributed to greenhouse gases?

    So maybe the true answer is more complex with the fundamental lapse rate being sustained according to your hydrostatic hypothesis, and with the GHGs acting simply as the energy release funnel but for some reason having very low (or even zero) sensitivity to any changes in their concentration.

    Perhaps this would neatly conjoin your "hydrostatic" hypothesis with the "low climate sensitivity" hypotheses of those very sane distinguished climatologists Prof Richard Lindzen and Dr Roy Spencer, at the same time satisfying the thousands of professional engineers and scientists like me whose basic physics training prevents us from buying in to fictitious "radiative amplification"!

  15. Good Morning, David,

    Climate scientists (including, I'm afraid, Lindzen and Spencer) are miseducating the world, and especially students of science, including other scientists. For example, your statements contain blatantly contradictory ideas: You first say, "if the triatomic gases ARE involved, changing their proportions in the atmosphere would surely affect the energy balance and therefore the surface temperature!" (My Venus/Earth comparison definitively says they don't, at least CO2 doesn't.) But then you speculate what seems to me the very opposite, "...with the GHGs...for some reason having very low (or even zero) sensitivity to any changes in their concentration." (Bingo, my analysis shows the CO2 temperature sensitivity, at least, is essentially zero; the huge difference in CO2 concentration between the Earth and Venus has no effect on the temperature vs. pressure profile, which is essentially the same for both planets.) Atmospheric proportion IS concentration, yet the one, you say, "would surely affect the energy balance" while the other can have (and in my analysis does have) "zero sensitivity". I hope the logical inconsistency in your two statements is clear (and, that my analysis shows which one -- the latter -- is in fact correct, while the other is simply wrong).

    The above is where the climate debate is currently stuck, in my view, with any authorities who have seen my Venus/Earth analysis ignoring its (to me) plain implications, and people like yourself (and I'm talking about an entire generation of students, worldwide, at least) left holding contradictory ideas without realizing it. Once everyone accepts the validity of my analysis, then it is possible to go further; but until they do, I am in the untenable position of teaching people climate physics literally one at a time, and indeed as I uncover it for myself. Mine is the dilemma of every revolutionary discoverer, of how to gain recognition by the authorities of the day (or of the community of others in his profession), how to be accepted as one of them, and even as one whose understanding supersedes their own. It is a mess, or a work in progress, depending upon your philosophical outlook.

    For what it is worth (and imagine this appearing in peer-reviewed journals, for all to see and study), I don't yet know all the details of atmospheric warming. Based upon my Venus/Earth analysis, I would say that, as soon as a portion (a photon) of the incident solar radiation is absorbed in the atmosphere, by any element, then it is simply heat, which quickly goes to warm any other element that interacts with the first. I know that people think the infrared radiation is mainly absorbed by the triatomic elements, but I consider that just another myth of the current theorists. What they have observed is, I think, merely that the radiation portion of the heat transfer within the atmosphere is quickly concentrated in the triatomic elements, but that neglects the convection/conduction component of the heat transfer. It is indeed the main criticism of radiation transfer theory that it neglects the latter components of heat transfer, to focus only upon the radiative component, and thus entirely misses the real thermodynamics of the atmosphere. As I have already stated (in earlier comments here, and earlier posts), the thermodynamic effect of increasing CO2 (and other triatomic, or "greenhouse" gas) concentration is simply to increase the efficiency/speed of heat transfer within the atmosphere. As one of the earlier commenters has noted, the temperature on the dark side of Venus is just as high as on the sunlit side, and I attribute that to the increased efficiency of heat transfer due to the high concentration of CO2 in that atmosphere. So, in your terms, increased CO2 does NOT affect the "energy balance", it only quickens the attainment of the balance governed by the lapse rate structure of the atmosphere.

    Harry Dale Huffman

  16. David,

    As to your question about the theoretical blackbody temperature of the Earth:

    The Venus/Earth comparison I have done does a lot to correct current theory, and this is another basic point. You will note that I did not include albedo in my calculation of the effective radiating temperature of the Earth, or of Venus, and there is no room for an albedo effect in my results. Climate scientists (and presumably planetary atmospheres scientists) are wrong to apply the Stefan-Boltzmann equation at the surface of the Earth; it can only be done outside the atmosphere, which is basically what I did automatically in my analysis. The S-B equation obviously can't be applied at the surface, because there is heat transfer by conduction and convection, not just by radiation, in the atmosphere, between the surface and outer space. Nor, it follows, can one use the planetary albedo to "correct" the S-B equation to make it applicable where in fact it is inapplicable. So it should be obvious (but is not, to climate scientists and other followers of the consensus theory) that you can't simply subtract the "reflected" light from the incident solar intensity to calculate the effective, or equivalent blackbody, temperature. The widely-quoted value of 255K is wrong, and should be 279K (use the mean incident solar intensity of 342 W/m^2, not 342 - 102, or incident minus reflected). This is very basic physics; only a dogmatic belief in the current interpretations of radiative physics, as applied to the atmosphere, makes it a blind spot for consensus followers. Make no mistake, the radiative physics must be fundamentally flawed, as currently interpreted and applied.

  17. On the second issue of Stefan-Boltzmann-based calculations, again I agree that these are invalid except when applied to the Earth as a whole including all the

    (unless we are talking about a GHG-less Earth, as discussed above, in which case the atmosphere is transparent in both directions and therefore

    irrelevant!). Again the issue for me is how best to 'un-persuade' reasonable people who have been indoctrinated by the apparently simple math based on Stefan-

    Boltzmann theory and thereby beguiled into believing in the inevitability of GHG radiative warming. I have found that just stating that Stefan-Boltzmann doesn't apply

    at the Earth's surface is unpersuasive. This is a conundrum of human perception that I don't yet know how to resolve.

    All the best, and I look forward to a continuing interesting dialogue.

  18. David,

    I received the further comment you sent, and read through the paper you recommended, "How Greenhouse Gases Work" by Robert Clemenzi (2009), and I also went to his site and read some of his other articles, which present involved theory and speculations that I won't comment on here (I think it would be more appropriate for you to recommend my Venus/Earth analysis to him, and ask him as a theorist to consider the effect of my evidence upon his theories). I decided after some consideration not to publish your comment here, because I want to keep this page as clear and simple as I can, and focused upon the definitive evidence of the Venus/Earth comparison, and what it means to climate science. But thank you for your words of agreement and your recommendations for further reading.

  19. Harry: If there is no greenhouse effect on Earth, how do you explain the observed drops (over time) in the Earth's outgoing radiation at the wavelengths expected by conventional theoretical expectations for CO2 and CH4:

    "Comparison of spectrally resolved outgoing longwave data between 1970 and present," Griggs and Harries, Proc. SPIE 5543, 164 (2004).

    and Chen 2007:

  20. David Appell,

    The short answer is that I don't have to explain it, rather those who promulgate the conventional theory need to explain it (I made this point to "Physics Today", when I submitted a letter communicating my Venus/Earth comparison -- and they declined to put it before their readership). With my analysis of the Venus/Earth data, we are in the realm of new knowledge (but it is "new", only because a generation of physical scientists, specifically charged with knowing their subject, strangely neglected to do what I have done, and what any first year physics student should be able to do in a few hours). That knowledge needs to be accounted for in our theories, if those theories are to survive or become better. I suggest that students, worldwide, show their science teachers/professors their eagerness to know how this new knowledge fits into current theories, or requires a better theory.

    That basic point having been made, let me tell you what I, and I would expect any competent physicist, would say to your specific question, without having to drag in the full theory of radiation physics as applied to planetary atmospheres. I would hypothesize that a drop in outgoing radiation specifically and uniquely attributable to CO2, simply implies an increase in atmospheric CO2, somehow. Wonder of wonders, that hypothesis would appear to have substantial experimental support already, as we are informed of just such an increase in atmospheric CO2 in recent decades. So far, so good.

    Now if you want to go further, and hypothesize that an increase in atmospheric CO2 must cause an increase in atmospheric temperature, at any given pressure level, then you have your work cut out for you, because the Venus/Earth comparison clearly shows there is no such increase, on even a planetary scale, for even such a huge increase in CO2 concentration as from 0.04% (Earth) to 96.5% (Venus). I have already given my view of the real effect of increased atmospheric CO2.

    If it seems that I am talking down to you, and to other scientists who promulgate and defend the current theory, it is because I am. I think I am talking to children, not adult professionals, who are simply wasting everyone's time by ignoring and dismissing my analysis. I don't know what else to make of a scientific community that has allowed the "greenhouse effect" hypothesis to go on for a generation, in the face of what I know to be clear and overwhelming evidence against it. Every first-year university physics class should have the Venus/Earth comparison I have done as a routine homework assignment, or as a lab exercise. It is tailor-made introductory physics, and science educators need to get on it, and stay on it.

    No one has all the answers (and again, I only call myself a competent scientist -- who nevertheless has made great discoveries), but adult professionals don't whine about that, they get on with finding the answers, humbly and dispassionately, bit by agonizing bit. And they should be restrained from trying to drive the world politically, with their clearly inadequate expertise -- because they are doing great damage to the reputation and natural authority of science. And you and others on the internet should not be defending their science, but vigorously questioning it.

  21. Harry,

    Yes, I now see that you are quite right to keep the discussion 'on topic', namely your major finding that the lapse rates on Earth and Venus match almost exactly (over the same atmospheric pressure range and after taking into account relative insolation levels).

    My problem in the past with the 'PV=nRT' argument, if I may call it that, has been that protagonists never mention a vital piece of the jigsaw (perhaps it is too obvious?!) namely that the gas laws cannot themselves dictate a particular temperature at a particular pressure level in a planetary atmosphere because this also depends on the level of inflowing radiant energy from the Sun, and, of course, a balancing output flow of radiant energy to space. This I believe has caused a lot of confusion in the blogsphere hitherto with people (like me) worrying unnecessarily about the exact internal composition and behaviour of the atmosphere.

    The genius of your proof is that in effect you have incorporated this further consideration intrinsically by including the Venus/Earth insolation ratio in your analysis. This ratio, of course, is all you need to get your results, thus avoiding the almost impossible job of having to justify any of the energy flows within the components of the atmosphere (GHGs, non-GHGs, clouds, aerosols), or having to include albedo effects.

    This is truly excellent science - reducing the problem to the simplest level whilst intrinsically and correctly encapsulating all the physical uncertainties.

    I am in awe. Congratulations!

    P.S. I shall be in St Lucia from tomorrow lying on my back absorbing carefully controlled levels of insolation for the next 10 days but I'm happy to re-join the discussion thereafter.

  22. David Socrates,

    Thank you very much. Obviously, I think it is pretty cool too, but I think the atmospheres of Venus and Earth should get the lion's share of the credit, for being so easy to compare and interpret. Too bad James Hansen or others did not have the expertise to do it 19 years ago or so, when it should have been done and generally accepted.

    At the risk of sounding nitpicking, I should add that what I showed was not that the "lapse rate" of the two atmospheres matched almost exactly, but that their temperature vs. pressure profiles do (when the difference in their distances from the Sun is accounted for, and over the range of pressures found in Earth's troposphere, where both atmospheres show a hydrostatic structure, in the form of a negative lapse rate). The lapse rate for Earth's troposphere is -6.5K/km, while that for Venus is approximately -8.1K/km.

  23. Harry, Your terminology is correct and mine was sloppy. When I get back I would like to re-engage with you on how we can best get this publicised. Handled properly, this is dynamite.

  24. David S.,

    How to get it publicized is a political question, and anyone who wants to address that should, for now, e-mail me at, rather than posting here.

  25. Roscomac,

    Thank you for your positive considerations, but they are not focused upon the Venus/Earth comparison put forward here, and unnecessarily complicate, and therefore confuse, the discussion. I am probably not the best one for you to be talking to at this stage, but if you want to e-mail me for an answer to your queries, I will respond that way.

    David Appell,

    You are not engaging with the Venus/Earth comparison here, you are fighting. Think of this as a classroom, and you are just the student here. I will not allow anyone to disrupt my classroom. I told you this is new knowledge, which is not theory or speculation. It is fact, and needs no defense. Radiative transfer as applied in climate science is a theory, and must account for these new, definitive, and overwhelming facts.

  26. Harry, thank you so much for such a simple observation. Yes, those two words: "simple" and "observation" are what make your findings so damned beautiful! Compare this to the ridiculously complex and continually tweaked climate models based on myriad assumptions (that are incomprehensible even to the modellers, hey Mr HarryReadMe) and a flimsy hypothesis - how ugly is that!

    Up to this point I have always bought the "benign GHG theory" as promoted by well-meaning scientists like Jo Nova and Bob Carter et al - that the GH effect is real but small and unalarming - even dwarfed into insignificance by all the other influencing factors.

    But your simple observation here - comparing Venus and Earth using simple physical data that we know and basic physics makes all other arguments redundant - and provokes anyone with a brain to draw the only sensible conclusion possible: It IS the Sun wot dun it after all! Thank you for alerting me to your blog via your comment at WUWT.

    I do however also hope to see some opposing viewpoints from fellow sceptics (not from alarmists - I would expect nothing less from them) simply because right now it feels like this is almost too perfect to be true, and need to see a few minds brighter than mine converted too. I know, I know, consensus is irrelevant to science. But I'd like to see it all the same.

  27. Good Evening, David in UK,

    Thank you. The earlier comments here show what other skeptics of the climate consensus think about my Venus/Earth analysis; the fact is, I haven't gotten any opposing views from them, they just seem to verify that my data and calculations are correct, and those interested in particular theories sometimes refer to those theories, but without opposition to my analysis, and you can see how I have dealt with such references so far. The truth is, the analysis is quite transparent (student level, as I said in the article) and the result is a simple, inarguable fact, and one's reaction to it is an indicator of the level of scientific competence of the individual -- one's ability to focus upon clear fact, and one's mental independence from the claims of supposed science experts or "authorities" (such as scientific institutions like the AAAS, NAS, NASA, etc., which have all been suborned by the incompetent climate "consensus"). My position is that science needs to properly confront and accept my analysis -- thus, establishing a true consensus -- in order to provide the necessary correction for any real progress in climate science from this point on.

  28. So what about the supposed relationship between Earth`s geohistoric temperatures and CO2 levels as recorded in C14 decay? Is it simply that fewer animals are alive when the world is cold (therefore less CO2 gets produced)?

    Did CFC gases ever have potential as greenhouse gases?

    Having lived in India, i can attest that deforestation noticably increases temperature during the day and reduces it at night, so it seems there is certainly anthropogenic climate change (or e.g. city heat island effect), however your analysis has dispelled my belief in AGW.

  29. Good Evening, Gaia Fusion,

    I am satisfied with having dispelled your belief in the greenhouse effect, which is the purpose of my article here. Your questions do not bear directly on that, so I won't address them here, but will merely take the opportunity to say again that I don't have, nor do I claim to have, all the answers (though your first one is easy, and has to do with the solubility of CO2 in the ocean, which is temperature dependent). In other words, truth is where you find it, and not all of it is to be found in the Venus/Earth comparison I have done here. Nevertheless, as I have tried to bring out, both in the article and in subsequent comments here, the Venus/Earth comparison does provide a whole handful of corrective answers to fundamental mistakes in consensus beliefs about the warming of the atmosphere.

  30. I am still wondering why this claimed earth-shattering finding has not been written up and submitted to a peer-reviewed scientific journal. A letter to Physics Today proves nothing, even it it were published (and it wouldn't be peer-reviewed). Only peer-review can do that. Any editor at any journal would be thrilled to publish such a finding, if it is true. It seems writing the paper would be easy now, largely cut-and-paste. And the only way any experts will ever take it seriously, or even notice it, is if it is published in a legitimate journal and put open to scrutiny. Why hasn't this been done?

  31. Good Morning, David Appell,

    Your comment does not address the science of my analysis, but it is an important question.

    A scientist's professional charge is first, last and always to advance human knowledge. In my experience (I am now 63 years old), this requires not just the necessary education, experience, insight, discovery and verification of new knowledge, but having found such knowledge, being open and straightforward in my efforts to communicate it. I am, then, like heat energy, that flows along any path that is open and is the quickest, most efficient way I can find to alert others to what I consider critical new knowledge -- indeed, revolutionary new knowledge. I have simply not found peer-reviewed journals to be open channels for revolutionary knowledge.

    And my simple Venus/Earth analysis is not my only experience in addressing the problem of how to bring revolutionary new knowledge to the world, just when the world badly needs it, but determinedly resists it.

    You, for example, are not addressing my scientific analysis, so you are not acting like a scientist. The editor(s) of "Physics Today" did not act like scientists either. No academic authority or climate "expert" I have tried to inform of my analysis has acted like a scientist. Correction, make that "like an honest, competent scientist". My experience in this is long, and only getting longer, and it is an indictment of science and scientists on every level. While that is to be expected, with revolutionary knowledge, it does not change the fact that I will get my discoveries out, and I will see that it is done openly, honestly, and with as high a scientific standard as I can muster. I think real scientists would help me, recognizing me as one of their own.

  32. Mr. Huffman

    I like your basic analysis. It makes sense. If we accept that the higher you go the colder it gets then the reverse should also be true. I've always found the Venus analogy to be very dicey. Thanks for this information. I have another issue for you to ponder. Nowhere have I seen the absorption and re-radiation of photons in an atmosphere treated in a quantum mechanical manner. We all know that this is a quantum mechanical process. So here are basic questions/issues
    1. Won't some of the re-radiated photons be transformed into lower energy photons?
    2. How much do issues like the Zeeman effect affect the absorption and re-radiation in a body of gas?
    3. Shouldn't we see stimulated emission effects in the Atmosphere?

  33. Good Morning, Harpo,

    Thank you. Your comments remind me of the feel of college physics on campus, with free-wheeling discussions of fundamental physics that required only an empty classroom and a couple of fellow students (or one good instructor) to make great strides in physical understanding of any and all processes in the natural world. I know that's fun, and I hate to be an old party poop (or a useless instructor), but for the questions you bring up, you have wandered into the wrong room. This is just the machine shop (or maybe the steam plant), and we're trying to fix an important piece of equipment called climate science -- that is, just get it up and running properly. I'm afraid you will have to go over to the fancy new classroom building on the other side of campus.

    Seriously, I will keep your questions in mind, but this page is really just for presenting the Venus/Earth comparison, and what climate science (and any interested physicist) can and should learn from that comparison. At the moment, I can only suggest you browse the net for information. (Tom Vonk writes about the quantum mechanics behind IR absorption and emission in the atmosphere, and of course the radiation transfer guys will talk your socks off with their models -- but none of them can yet hold a candle to the simple comparison here of Venus and Earth, to correct and advance our understanding of climate.)

  34. Harry, I notice you're assuming that Venus's bond albedo (the fraction of reflected insolation) is not significantly different from Earth's. To see whether there was a significant difference I tried repeating your calculations taking the respective albedos into account. Here's what I concluded, let me know whether or not you agree.

    Whereas Earth's bond albedo is around 0.3, Venus's bond albedo is around 0.75. Hence Earth is being heated by 0.7 of the insolation whereas Venus is being heated by only 0.25 of the insolation.

    So the quantity you should be taking the fourth root of is not 1.91 but 1.91*.25/.7 = .682, whose fourth root is .909.

    From this it follows that your table of Earth temperatures and their matching Venus temperatures should be as follows.

    PRES T_E T_V T_V/.909 Error (K)
    1000 287.4 338.6 287.9 85.1
    900 281.7 331.4 281.8 82.9
    800 275.5 322.9 274.6 79.7
    700 268.6 315.0 267.9 77.9
    600 260.8 302.1 256.9 71.5
    500 251.9 291.4 247.8 68.7
    400 241.4 278.6 236.9 65.1
    300 228.6 262.9 223.6 60.6
    200 211.6 247.1 210.1 60.2

    In particular when the pressure is 1 Earth atmosphere (which occurs at 49.5 km altitude) the quantity T_V/.909 is 85 degrees hotter than the surface of Earth.

    One might think at first that this was just the result of greenhouse warming by the mass of CO2 above 49.5 km. However it only takes about 11 doublings of Earth's .04% CO2 to bring it up to the 97% obtaining on Venus.

    Assuming a climate sensitivity of 3 degrees per doubling, the error should only be 33 degrees. How did it turn out to be 85 degrees? That could only happen with a climate sensitivity of 7.7 degrees per doubling, way higher than what atmospheric physicists expect.

    If you have any ideas as to what's going on here I'd be very interested in hearing them.


  35. Good Morning, Celeste,

    Because we are dealing here with an entrenched incompetence in the generally-accepted science, in the face of which one of my watchwords is simplicity (of explanation), the short answer to what is going on here, is that you haven't understood my simple analysis, whose results turn consensus opinions like yours literally upside down -- in short, I have NOT assumed there is no difference in albedo, or that the difference in albedo is unimportant, rather you are assuming that the difference IS important. (Go ahead, reread the article, and prior comments, where I address the albedo directly, but shortly as it deserves.) My analysis clearly and simply SHOWS it is not important, and the simple physical reason why it is not: Because the two atmospheres must be heated by direct absorption of incident solar infrared radiation, both of them by the same portion of that incident radiation (read my second reply to "biocab", above). So the ONLY PART of the incident solar radiation that matters for atmospheric warming is that common portion absorbed directly by both atmospheres -- NOT the portion that is "reflected", by either the planetary surface or cloud tops. I put "reflected" in quotes, because I even doubt you know what the true reflection coefficient is, or at least what it means physically, because once any part of the incident solar radiation interacts with the atmosphere, and comes back out, it is not just an innocent bystander to be subtracted out before you calculate expected warming. Even the visible portion is scattered, we know, because that scattering is obvious from the fact that it lets us see the blue sky.

    This point is fundamental to exposing the incompetence behind the consensus, which insists upon treating the surface of the planet as a blackbody emitter (that is, using the Stefan-Boltzmann equation, "corrected" by "albedo" or not, as it suits their purpose), even though any second-year physics student should know you can only replace an actual body by an equivalent blackbody when the only energy interaction the body has with the rest of the universe is electromagnetic radiation; and the surface of the Earth (or any planet with an atmosphere) does not fit that requirement (since its atmosphere intervenes between it and outer space, and that atmosphere transfers energy by convection and conduction as well as by radiation, scattering the latter all and sundry along the way). In short, you have to draw a shell around the whole Earth-plus-atmosphere system to use the Stefan-Boltzmann equation, and any radiation coming out of that shell, just like any radiation entering it, is part of the thermodynamics of the atmosphere, unavoidably. The consensus is thoroughly deluded on this fundamental point, and I am here to tell the world that. The whole worldwide controversy over climate change is founded upon this pathetic truth about a fundamental sickness in climate science -- a mental sickness, due to entrenched, and clearly false, dogmas masqueraded as scientific facts. So I am sorry, your calculations are worthless (as are the corrections you also submitted).

  36. Ah, my apologies. I had naively searched your article for the word "albedo" without success and inferred incorrectly that you had not addressed that difference. At your suggestion I reread it and realized that the following addresses it.

    "This result also flies in the face of those who would say the clouds of Venus reflect much of the incident solar energy, and that therefore it cannot get 1.91 times the power per unit area received by the Earth -- the direct evidence presented here is that its atmosphere does, in fact, get that amount of power, remarkably closely."

    Let me run your argument by you just to make sure I've understood it. The direct evidence of the excellent agreement between Earth's surface temperature and T_V/1.176 proves that Venus must be absorbing the same percentage of the solar energy reaching it as does Earth, namely 70%. This good agreement shows that the claim by some astronomers, that Venus only absorbs 25% of that energy, is therefore wrong by a factor of 2.8. (Bond albedo is the relevant kind of albedo when talking about fraction of energy reflected, since it integrates the reflected energy over all relevant wavelengths and angles of incidence.)

    Have I understood you correctly?

    I am shocked at the extent of the incompetence in astronomy. Hopefully future generations will measure these things more carefully.

  37. Celeste,

    Yes, that is precisely what I wanted you to see, and understand. Good work, I'm sure this will help others who read your comments to do the same. However, for the benefit of other readers, it does not just apply to the comparison at the pressure at Earth's surface, but over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, particularly outside of the Venus cloud region.

    I hope you are in science, as it needs your kind badly right now. If I had my own research institution (and I need one for what I am trying to do), I would be trying to get scientists like you to work there, as one of the very few who have so far shown a willingness to look again, and focus on the evidence long enough to understand it physically. And don't be too shocked by the incompetence in Astronomy; the problem is a crisis of incompetence across all of the physical sciences, particularly the earth and life sciences, due to a general intellectual ingestion of bad theories taught as fact, and based upon a false paradigm, as my greater research has uncovered and proved.

  38. Good, I'm glad we're on the same wavelength then.

    It seems to me that you could make your argument even stronger by removing all circularities from it. Not that circularity is necessarily a bad thing, mathematical induction would not work without it.

    The one small circularity I see here is that you infer that the bond albedo of Venus must be that of Earth, based on the good agreement you get in your table. From this it follows that the ratio 1.176 is applicable. You then apply that ratio to obtain good agreement between T_E and T_V/1.176. Some misguided people might grumble that this is circular.

    I would imagine that if you reworded your argument to remove this minor circularity, even more people would find it convincing. But as I pointed out mathematicians are happy to use circular arguments so why not here? Those complaining about circularity evidently don't understand induction.

  39. Celeste,

    There is no circularity, there is only you continuing to assume the albedo must be important ("guilty until proven innocent", I guess; only you're still assuming -- even after my answer to you concerning the proper use of the Stefan-Boltzmann equation, hint, hint -- and I am not, I am just being simple in my approach, removing the effect of the most obvious variables first; I remove the pressure variable by comparing the two atmospheres at points of equal pressure, and I remove the solar variable by calculating the expected Venus/Earth temperature ratio if that were the only variable, and by the way I automatically, without even having to think about it, remove the albedo variable by calculating the blackbody temperature properly -- and I find I have used up all of the variation with just the Sun, quite precisely). Now I suggest you read ALL of the comments above, paying particular attention to my reply to Brian, and my answer to David Socrates concerning calculating the equivalent blackbody temperature of the Earth-atmosphere system. My analysis corrects a whole handful of errors made by current climate theorists -- with no circularity, and nothing up my sleeve. That's why David Socrates said he was in awe, and the entire scientific community should be in awe at such simplicity and clarity, provided by the atmospheres of Venus and Earth, and an analysis by me that in my student days would have merely made me a particularly good student, nothing more. Thinking has gone down hill in science (even in physics, my field) since then. Or maybe, just maybe, I AM a genius, simply for seeing the obvious where so many (97%, I have read over and over) now are blind. But you haven't seen anything until you study, and understand, my greater research, into the objective origin of the "ancient mysteries". This, in contrast, is just a by-the-way correction of a single field of science, done with a minimal amount of effort, yet amazingly definitive.

  40. David Appell,

    Learn from others' comments here, and my replies to them, what a scientist does. I am telling the truth, and you refuse to hear it. You are not even the science journalist you claim to be, but only an emotionally biased defender of a corrupt system, suborned by an incompetent climate science. And your angry comments, which you admit don't address the actual science, would only disrupt honest truth-seeking, so just don't bother submitting any more like them.

  41. Huffman's logic looks good to me (but neither do I have enough science background to be confident that I'm not being bamboozled.)

    As I understand it, the basic table of Venus and Earth temperatures shown (which can be verified as actual collected and unadjusted data) demonstrate that within the 1000 to 200mb range, Venus temperature is a constant 1.176 higher than Earth (K degrees) , and that factor happens to also be the radiating factor difference between Venus and Earth.

    The radiating factor is determined by the Stefan-Boltzmann law, in this case the fourth root of 93/67.25, (ratio of average distances from the sun) No consideraion has been given to greenhouse gas, albedos, etc., so either both Venus (96% CO2) and Earth (.04% CO2) are either both already maxed out in terms of greenhouse effect, or... there is no greenhouse effect. ??

  42. .. "max out" at something less than .04% co2

  43. Good Afternoon, GoFigure560,

    I debated a minute or two whether to publish your comments, since they cover no new ground, and repeat the false statement that "no consideration has been given" to this or that physical variable, such as albedo. I just went through this with Celeste, above (and see my reply to Brian H, earlier), and will just repeat, it is all in the original article, but reading all the previous comments might have saved you repeating this point. Nevertheless, you have made an honest effort to understand and summarize my analysis, I think, and that is worth recognizing. I know that the likes of Chris Colose, Jeff Id, and probably others have dismissed my analysis on the flimsy basis of the albedo question, which only means they have not absorbed what I actually wrote in my article -- which should be clear as day to any competent professional physical scientist -- and such critics have also tried to dissuade people like you from accepting my clear analysis by insinuating I am somehow bamboozling those gullible enough to consider me seriously. I won't be giving any further space to the unscientific misdirections of such deluded "experts", and they can ignore me all they want, at their professional peril. My readers should know I am not kidding or being otherwise eccentric in focusing upon the incompetence now rampant in science.

  44. I hope you don't mind that I have sent your blog link to several relevant people (who don't otherwise know me, and - in any event, I'm certainly no authority on this issue), with the "dare" that, unlike some other physicists who arrived at the same conclusion but the involved mathematics probably put off even curious readers because it required a considerable level of expertise and time to investigate whereas you have made a very simple claim, backed with straight-forward logic and data.

    The"dare" being that it should therefore be quite easy to rebut if it is wrong, and if that is not the case, that itself speaks to the claims of the greenhouse effect being "settled" science.

  45. Good Afternoon, denis,

    There is nothing wrong with getting the word out about the existence of a definitive disproof of the consensus greenhouse effect, which scientists in the field should have performed, properly confronted, and unanimously accepted nearly 20 years ago. As I have told others who have lately inquired about reproducing the article itself, I would like to keep it here on my own site for now, where I can be aware of comments and reply properly to them.

  46. It turns out that I'm both "GoFigure560" and "denis", the former occurs when I'm asked for a profile and I click on google. Sorry - no intent to deceive.

    You claim is very exciting. I've been a skeptic of AGW for some time just based on other information, went so far as to generate a google-doc so that friends and family, if interested, could pursue the issue.

  47. Okay, denis ables,

    I checked your link (and saw your last name there). We won't be getting into the mountains of internet arguments in the climate debates here, which your tutorial goes into. As I have said in earlier replies, I want to keep this page focused upon the Venus/Earth comparison presented here, and its implications for correcting climate science.

  48. I knew there was "experimental evidence" demonstrating the greenhouse effect, but was hoping some of my contacts might look at your claim, and discuss what's wrong, if anything, with it. The logic looked good to me, and I'm assuming the temperature/pressure profile data was accurate. ... but I haven't yet given up hope.

  49. Good Evening, denis,

    I decided to allow this comment, even though it adds nothing to the real science under discussion, because it can be used to show the avoidance behavior religiously practiced by defenders of the climate consensus. I assume the people you contacted rebuffed you with a vague statement about experimental evidence for the greenhouse effect. It doesn't sound like they gave you any details, but in fact those details aren't important, because the existence of evidence FOR something is not generally definitive (i.e., does not prove it), while the existence of evidence forbidding something is (does DISPROVE it). My Venus/Earth analysis denies any possibility of a greenhouse effect -- it is simply a demonstrated experimental fact in my analysis that, based upon the detailed temperature and pressure data of Venus and Earth, the only difference in their atmospheric temperatures, over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, is precisely due to the difference in their distances from the Sun, and nothing else. In particular, the difference (17%) is not at all due to the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, since Venus has almost pure CO2 (96.5%), while Earth has only a trace (0.04%) -- a difference of more than 11 doublings of CO2 which, in the usual claims of 3°C of warming per doubling of CO2 (the consensus), would give a Venus temperature-vs-pressure curve over 33°C higher than Earth's temperature-vs-pressure curve, in the graph I presented. Yet the curves are on top of one another; Venus's curve is not 30°C, nor 10°C, nor even 1°C higher than Earth's. Inside Venus's clouds, it is even a few degrees lower than Earth's. So there simply is no CO2 greenhouse effect as claimed by the consensus. They WILL NOT admit this truth; I can even understand that most of them CANNOT admit this, it is simply too horrifying a revelation of their fundamental incompetence, for them.

    But I am not surprised you were rebuffed, nor should you be, nor should you be disappointed; your contacts are only behaving no better than any other defenders of the consensus, and no more competently nor honestly. Remember, there was "experimental evidence" (naive observation) for the Sun moving around the Earth in Galileo's time, and he was harshly rebuffed by the authorities of his time for claiming otherwise. He is famously rumored to have murmured under his breath, defiantly, "nevertheless it moves", referring to the Earth. Perhaps you might have struck an honest nerve with your contacts if you had replied to them, "nevertheless there is no greenhouse effect". But almost certainly not; the order of the day for consensus scientists is avoidance behavior. See the first comment by David Appell above, and my reply to it. Anyone who has ever been in an untenured position, working under a tenured academic or well-funded principal investigator, can tell you they are well-trained in avoiding admitting anything of importance that they don't want to admit, and such behavior on the part of those in positions of power and authority is par for the course across all of science, and of course in politics too. This is the number one symptom of their incompetence, in my long experience. The practical impossibility of getting any anti-consensus articles through the peer-review process (particularly into "Science", or "Nature", or "Physics Today", or "Scientific American", etc.) is another. We are up against an essentially lawless system, for those outside of it, and they are exercising absolute control to the limit of their ability. That is why I see no better way to go than to go directly to the masses, with the simplest, clearest FACTS, not theory, I can find. They are playing Russian Roulette with the reputation of science in the world, and they are playing with a fully-loaded gun. The truth will out, and they WILL lose, disastrously for everyone on every side of the debates.

  50. Firstly, let me just say I'm amazed at the simplicity and intuitiveness of your theory, always a good sign. I'm going off on a bit of a tangent here though, this being my first post I hope you'll indulge me.

    So, if we switched off the sun, the atmosphere would lose most of its temperature and volume but pressure will be kept a constant 1atm at sealevel by gravity. As we warm the sun back up, the atmosphere would increase in temperature and volume, regulated purely by the sun again with pressure held constant by gravity. As such, the composition of the gas is mostly irrelevant, it can be viewed as an ideal gas which will exhibit the same expansion behaviour and temperature differentials regardless of its constituent particles. The difference in composition would be in how well they conduct to equalise temp/volume at a given pressure.

    I'm just a curious amateur, it would be nice if you could correct any and all of my thought experiment. It does seem incomprehensible that such a fundamental and simple explanation has escaped evaluation. The greenhouse effect never sat well with me, but I bought into the CO2 consensus even though I was skeptical of the dangers of warming. Not anymore. It seems obvious (and physically sound) that CO2 is more like a lubricant than a furnace.

    Do you know of any data from other planets or moons? You have proven your case well already with just two planets, but more empirical verification is always good, right? Thanks for your blog, I love to have something this tasty to mentally chew on.

  51. Good Morning, Nazlfrag,

    I am torn between saying "congratulations" and "but you go too far."

    Congratulations on your simile, that "CO2 is more like a lubricant than a furnace", which seems to me an insightful and particularly good one, for turning around the thinking of an alarmed public, on CO2's real role in enabling quicker heat transfer, rather than in adding heat to our environment, although it would be more accurate (but wordier) to make it a black and white contrast: CO2 is like a lubricant for spreading the available heat, not like a furnace, producing more heat.

    In your thought experiment, rather than switching off the Sun, I would suggest you dial it down just part way, a little at a time; otherwise, at some point, on the way to freezing the atmospheric gases solid, the ideal gas law would cease to apply, and the temperature lapse rate structure would disappear. Just how far down you could dial it, without destroying that structure, is a good question for climate scientists. The other caveat I would add is that not all gas molecules are created equal -- CO2 is about 50% heavier than O2 or N2, for example -- and they have different specific heats, which affects the temperature lapse rate (the lapse rate in Venus's atmosphere is larger than that in Earth's atmosphere), so I wouldn't say that "the gas would exhibit the same expansion behavior and temperature differentials regardless of its constituent particles"; I would say, "expansion behavior and temperature differentials of the same form", but not "the same". But that may be nitpicking of what is a good thought experiment all around. Thank you.

    As for looking at other planets, I only tried to look at Mars, and found its surface pressure is only about 6.5 mb, so its atmosphere would have to be compared with the upper stratosphere and above in Earth's atmosphere. That takes it out of the regime of main interest to climate scientists, the troposphere, and I haven't seen authoritative temperature and pressure profiles for Mars, but an emphasis on large surface temperature variations that do not allow for a precise comparison with Earth's atmosphere even at the 6.5 mb pressure level. So there is still a lot left for others to do; I have just opened the door.

  52. I am curious about the following statement:

    "Yes, the observation that the dark hemisphere on Venus is as hot as the lighted one is a good one, since it underscores the fact that the temperature profile of a planetary atmosphere is determined quite simply by considering the atmosphere as like the ocean, with pressure (and hence temperature) increasing with depth."

    In particular, the "like the ocean" piece. It is my (perhaps mistaken) understanding that the temperature of the ocean decreases with depth. I do understand that the pressure increases with depth, however.

  53. Good Evening, Richard,

    It was merely awkward wording on my part, too closely juxtaposing two physically related but different ideas, in too few words: 1) That the air and water ocean are alike, in that the pressure increases with depth in both, due to gravity (this is called the hydrostatic condition) and 2) that, in the troposphere at least, the temperature of the air varies directly with the pressure, and so also increases with depth (this is the negative temperature lapse rate structure I have emphasized, which also follows from the hydrostatic condition for an ideal gas). You are right that the temperature of the water ocean decreases with depth. In hindsight, I should probably have changed the wording of the comment to something like, "...with pressure (and, in the atmosphere, the temperature too) increasing with depth".

    This awkwardness came out in that comment because, in the article itself, I simply said, "the atmospheric pressure varies with the temperature...", in motivating why I compared temperatures at points of equal pressure in the two atmospheres. What I didn't say, was that I knew that one could divide the water ocean into horizontal layers, each layer characterized by its pressure, due to overlying layers, and so I knew I could do the same with the hydrostatic atmosphere, and thus see that, if the radiating temperature of the whole Venus+atmosphere system was 1.176 times that of the Earth+atmosphere system, then the temperature of each pressure layer of the Venus atmosphere must also be 1.176 times that of the corresponding pressure layer of the Earth atmosphere -- which my results confirmed, all too splendidly. I tried to shield my readers from too lengthy a motivation, but I really wanted to bring it all out, so I ended up mangling that later comment (also trying to keep it simple, while hinting at the real physics behind it all). So there you have it, I am really a closet physicist, and if you scratch at my words too hard you will get a torrent of explanation. As Monk would say, it's a gift...and a curse.

  54. I have no problem with wordiness. Better to say more and make it clear.

    I have another question, though.

    Since PV = nRT, and T is directly (>) proportional to the average energy, then haven't you simply stated a tautology?

    That is, if CO2 does cause the atmosphere to retain more energy, then the 1,000 mB level will just shift upwards?

  55. Richard,

    My abiding aim is to simplify an unnecessarily complicated situation in science, where an incompetent consensus now rules across the board. The reality is, it is better (for me, and for the situation in science) to use fewer words to start, and only add more as needed. Readers will note I haven't posted another article on this site since this one, on the Venus/Earth comparison, nine months ago now. That's because it is the definitive correction to climate science, the new zero point for real progress in climate science, and I am waiting for climate scientists, indeed the world of science and the wider world beyond that, to catch up.

    For clarity on your question, you only need to read Nazlfrag's comment above, which answers most simply: The 1,000 mb level can't shift upwards in the governing hydrostatic approximation, it is fixed (at the surface) by the weight of the atmosphere above it. It is probably a good idea to remind ourselves at this point not to confuse weather with climate, or short-term variations (in surface pressure, for example) with long-term average.

  56. Arrrgh, of course, the volume of the atmosphere can change for a planet to keep the pressure constant at the surface.

    And of course, I should have realized that because I have seen articles about the effect of the atmosphere shrinking (satellites experience less friction and use less station-keeping propellant ...).

  57. Richard,

    Thank you for the positive feedback, honestly sharing that "eureka" moment when the light shines through, even if it makes you say "ouch! or "arrrgh" at first. I'm sure others who read this far will appreciate it, too. And thanks also to Nazlfrag for his clear and simple comment, so I didn't have to be the only one on hand with the answer, I only had to point it out.

  58. The 1st thing I thought upon reading this article was: "wait, you can't take pressure out as if it were inconsequential. The net outcome of the so-called greenhouse effect could just be a contribution to the remarkable pressure values that Venus has".
    Indeed, it seems that in the latest comments this issue is surfacing.
    The sun is contributing energy, not temperature, to the planetary system (obviously!); suppose that there are mechanisms that help the planet retain more of the aforementioned energy before dispersing it. Since there is a continuous flow of energy both in from the sun and out to space, different and changing properties in the objects involved (atmospheric strata, but also oceans and even land) may translate in an increased amount of energy retained.
    You just discovered a good demonstration of the fact that the planetary atmospheric systems are good at recreating an equilibrium where a given P is corresponding to a predictable T, dependent only on the incoming solar radiation.
    But the point is, the increase in thermal energy of the planet is not changing that; it's probably shifting the pressure levels up, as Richard pointed out.

  59. Good Morning, Alessandro,

    Your comment is a good one, but only to illustrate the ways in which a believer's mind can filter the available information on a scientific problem, shutting out a good deal, and actually reversing the meaning of some, as necessary, to make the point the believer (in the greenhouse effect hypothesis, in this case) wants to make.

    For example, your point is, in the end, the same as Richard Sharpe's; but you have simply ignored the fact that I easily answered his point, and he himself agreed (grudgingly, saying "arrgh, of course", and then explaining to himself in his own words what he had suddenly realized). You have evidently read the comments before yours, yet you clearly failed to absorb what the last several were saying, which is that increasing the thermal energy cannot shift the pressure levels, and your point is dead and already well buried. I only allowed it in as an example of the current inability of consensus followers to focus upon the facts.

    All the rest of your comment is a self-contradicting tangle, that requires, I think, more than a quick answer here; it requires a serious re-education on your part. I think the best short answer I can give you (and it will probably seem like only a vague hint to you) is that what you have written ignores the unchanging mass of the atmosphere, which alone is responsible for the "remarkable pressure values that Venus has". That mass, and the long-term governing hydrostatic lapse rate structure of the atmosphere, preclude any long-term effects by any other "mechanisms that help the planet retain more of before dispersing it". The Venus/Earth comparison clearly shows that, in the absence of changes in the incident solar radiation, any and all such "mechanisms" (the bread and butter of the incompetent consensus, and the miseducation of students worldwide for a generation and more) are transient (weather) and/or highly localized in effect (the thick clouds on Venus, most notably).

  60. Good evening :-)
    Excuse me, but you are operating under the assumption that some things are irrelevant and/or independent and unchanging. Who told you that the mass of the atmosphere of Venus (or Earth, for that matter) is a constant? Is the mass of the "atmosphere" of comets a constant?
    In my view, although I'm ready to admit ignorance on the subject, and sure, there have to be other factors at work, Venus got a very thick atmosphere in no small part due to the fact that, gradually heating up, whatever could get in gaseous form, eventually did (but the gravity well was enough to retain gases).

  61. Alessandro,

    Remember, I told you based upon your previous comment that you require a re-education. This is not the place to get that education, but I would suggest you look up "standard temperature and pressure", otherwise known as conditions of STP. What are those conditions, quantitatively? Why are they called "standard", if they are not fixed over the long term? You apparently feel you can re-imagine all of physics as it suits you, to avoid learning the truth you don't want to face. You are of course not alone; incompetent "experts" also theorize that Venus got its thick atmosphere through the "runaway" greenhouse effect -- yet there is clearly no greenhouse effect on Venus now (you have not explained my results with any other interpretation), with its huge atmosphere of carbon dioxide, so ask yourself (and them) how there could have been such an effect when the atmosphere was far less massive -- and note, they (and you), are the ones assuming, not me. You assume the atmosphere gains mass, even at present Earth atmospheric temperatures, yet the Standard Atmosphere, based upon many years of detailed observations, categorically denies such an assumption, as does the lack of any scientific reports of a strange increase in atmospheric mass, or mean surface pressure in modern times, correlated with atmospheric temperature (the mean surface pressure at sea level is a standard unit, for heaven's sake; it is called "one atmosphere"). There is no basis for your, and those "experts"', view on this subject at all, yet you feel secure stating that "view" as if it had any logical force, as if the most basic science didn't exist that shows it to be patently false. You are misinformed, or miseducated, by the "experts", who are in fact not expert, indeed far from it.

  62. Alessandro,

    I got your further comment, which is too long and disjointed to help advance anyone's understanding here. I'm sorry, but you are not focusing upon the governing facts, and I don't think arguing with you will change that. There are some legitimate points in your comment, but they are lost in a sea of assertions that I find vague and careless of known facts, and they have already been addressed, in the article and in earlier comments. Your last point amounts to an assertion that some effect(s) internal to the atmosphere, causing it to retain more energy -- as, for example, "heat trapping" by carbon dioxide -- could expand the atmosphere but leave the temperature-vs-pressure curve I have focused upon undisturbed, thus explaining my results but saving the greenhouse effect. But this ignores the basic fact that such an increase in the retained energy would change the radiating temperature of the planet+atmosphere system, and that is fixed by the incident solar radiation level. Really, it is as simple as that; your supposition simply violates the most fundamental, most basic physics. But you refuse to be pinned down by the hard facts, and merely want to speculate, vaguely and contrary to those facts, and have your speculations be received as logically compelling. The supposed experts, especially climate scientists, do this all the time today. I can only call this self-delusion (and I have, repeatedly).

  63. This seems pretty incontrovertible.

    If I'm reading this right, this could perhaps very neatly explain (to at least a high degree) the very few pieces of anecdotal or observational evidence that the consensus try to cite as "proof" of the greenhouse effect and AGW; namely, amplified warming at higher latitudes and at night, and melting mountain glaciers.

    Based on what you describe, and the temperature profile of Venus and its extremely long day, increased CO2 in its role as merely a lubricant may bring tropical warmth to the higher latitudes of Earth a bit more efficiently, increasing temperatures there in the winter in particular. It would also help to spread energy from the slowing the drop in temperature during the night.
    While it might reduce average daytime temperatures, it possibly wouldn't reduce the absolute maximum temperature on any given day at a given location. Hence, daytime maxima won't change much, but nighttime minima, particularly in higher latitudes, would not be so low, resulting in higher average "global" temperatures when taken as a simple arithmetic mean of maximum and minimum.

    Other comments have speculated on the 1 bar altitude of the atmosphere raising above sea level. Rather than that, is it possible that, if the atmosphere expands to maintain sea level pressure at 1 bar, the rate of reduction in temperature with altitude is slightly lessened? If so, then mountainous regions wolud see slightly raised pressures and temperatures, and this could perhaps reduce glacier size on the margins.

    Of course, the effect of the CO2 increase we've had would need to be quantified for both of these aspects (heat distribution and pressure decrease with altitude, if applicable or non-negligible). I'm sure this can be done by those with sufficent physics knowledge, which could then be compared to observations to give further validation to your findings.

    Thank you very much for presenting this - it could be absolute dynamite (literally) for AGW.

  64. Good Evening, beefy-k,

    You're welcome, and thank you. Yes, I have had similar thoughts, which I haven't looked into yet, and I won't get into these aspects here, because they go beyond the long-term temperature distribution which the Venus/Earth comparison focuses upon. You're talking about seasonal, daily and other short-term variations, and the effect of increased atmospheric CO2 upon these, in its role as a "heat lubricant" or heat transfer accelerant. Yes, I expect PhD's will be awarded for such work, in the future. However, I would consider it merely further affirmation, rather than validation, because that interpretation of CO2's true role explains too much already, and too simply for me to doubt it (for example, why the radiative transfer experts were fooled into thinking it was the "thermostat", rather than a preferred IR heat path, for the atmosphere--see my first reply to David Socrates, where I wrote, "What they have observed is, I think, merely that the radiation portion of the heat transfer within the atmosphere is quickly concentrated in the triatomic elements"). I don't consider further validation necessary for my finding that there is no greenhouse effect as promulgated by the IPCC-sponsored consensus, which is why I so confidently say the Venus/Earth comparison is definitive against that hypothesis.

  65. Alessandro,

    I have a responsibility to see all the facts treated fairly. If you refuse to even give heed to those facts that don't conform to your imagination, as if they were a temporary form given to an infinitely variable molding clay, then you are thoughtlessly disrespecting every scientist who struggled to bring those facts to light. I understand you are angry and frustrated, but I don't think it is possible, for me, to treat your comments any fairer than I have already, while being fair to myself and others who may read this page, or to lighten your self-imposed frustration with more of my simple physics. I don't claim to have all of the answers, but neither do you -- and that is my last word to you.

  66. It's nice to see you commenting over at WUWT. In case you missed it in the flood, note part of my comment at :

    Anthony – okay if I turn Dr Huffman’s account into a WUWT post? It’s been a while since we had an article here, and those we have are rather testy. E.g.

    Dr Huffman – okay if I turn this into a WUWT post? It will probably guarantee you’ll never hear from “Physics Today” but a lot more people will read it.

    My Email address is within

  67. About a year ago there was an interesting discussion on "Science of Doom" about what the temperature would be at the bottom of a "Tall Room" with perfectly insulated sides.

    One application would be to calculate the temperature profile if a very deep hole were dug on Earth to a point where the pressure would be comparable with the surface of Venus.

    Of course no consensus was reached but I was persuaded by the arguments that showed that pressure determined temperature (via adiabatic lapse rate derived from high school thermodynamics) so there was nothing to be gained by complex calculations involving RTEs (Radiative Transfer Equations).

    Furthermore it did not make much difference what gas one used. Carbon dioxide or Helium? It made little difference as long at the pressures were the same and the TOA (Top of the Atmosphere) temperatures were the same.

  68. (I originally treated Ric Werme's comment as a personal e-mail, and wrote back to him:)

    Good Morning, Mr. Werme,

    I received your comment to my blog article, "Venus: No Greenhouse Effect", and I think I would like you to read my submission to "Physics Today" and the resulting slight correspondence some two and a half months later, and consider publishing that on WUWT, rather than my original article. I tried submitting this material to WUWT some time ago, but the interface was troublesome and trashed my formatting, so it was probably ignored then. I am first going to simply put this in the current text, and if that doesn't work I will send an e-mail with the material attached. My current plan is to keep my article on my own blog site for now, where I can field comments and respond properly, until I can get the opportunity for a "mass market" publication that publically blows the lid off the truth about the greenhouse effect.

    Mr. Werme wrote back saying the material concerning my submission to "Physics Today" would be published as an article on WUWT (the familiar form for, but it won't happen immediately, as they are following the "brouhaha" over the recently-published Spencer and Braswell paper -- which, as I understand it, is an effort to show that the "radiative forcing" claimed by the consensus is substantially overestimated, so there is no good scientific reason for their high CO2 "climate sensitivity" of 3°C warming per doubling of CO2. Of course, the Venus/Earth analysis here shows that sensitivity is essentially zero.

  69. Good Morning, gallopingcamel,

    There was no consensus because ScienceofDoom is a noted defender of the greenhouse effect as imagined by the IPCC-sponsored consensus. His physics is misguided and misleading for the unwary, which most are these days. I am glad you managed to follow your own logic, but I should point out that the pressure doesn't determine the temperature, rather the pressure distribution determines the temperature distribution, what I have been calling the hydrostatic lapse rate structure; the actual temperature is due to the intensity of the incident solar radiation, as I would hope is clear from my article here.

  70. Readers,

    I have just gotten the following e-mail from Ric Werme:

    I heard back from Anthony [Watts, who puts out], he says he'll pass on the post, as in he's not interested now. He didn't offer a reason, it may be he's not interested on another dispute with a magazine/journal, it may be some of the sores from the posts Steven Goddard did on the matter.

    Anthony is busy enough that whenever I send him Email, I phrase it so that no response implies permission to go ahead, it's a bit odd that he
    didn't provide any reason. He may have just not wanted to start a dialog about it.

    Sorry, but it is his blog....

    I'll keep your Emails around in case a new opportunity opens up.



    Actually, as I had written to Ric, I already submitted the "Physics Today" submission and later short correspondence on it to Anthony at WUWT a few months ago, and heard nothing back. It looks like a pattern emerging now, that he doesn't want to be seen supporting me, but after all the ignoring of my work I have already experienced, it really means little. Thanks anyway, Ric.

  71. Here is a big problem with your calculation: you are assuming Earth and Venus are blackbodies. They aren't. By definition, a blackbody absorbs all radiation incident on it. But the albedo of Earth is about 0.3, and that of Venus a very high 0.75. Venus' thick atmosphere is reflecting much more solar radiation, yet its atmosphere is much warmer than Earth's. It is the greenhouse effect that makes the big difference.

    Your models of these planets are simply too simplistic.

  72. David Appell,

    I don't know quite whether to be sorry for you, or gleeful of the way you parade your ignorance for all to see. Your assertion is simply wrong, as well as woefully uninformed; that it is the best criticism you could come up with here, is thoroughly revealing of your lack of scientific knowledge, and your amazing ignorance of who you are really criticizing with that assertion. You see, I do not assume Earth and Venus are blackbodies. Indeed, the consensus climate scientists are the ones who do that, and I have stated over and over on various other sites that they are fundamentally wrong to do so. I have in fact discussed the proper use of the blackbody equation (the Stefan-Boltzmann equation) in earlier comments here, which you of course haven't bothered to read and take to heart; and best of all, I posted a new short article just yesterday on this topic, called "Blackbody -- The Key Error in Climate Science". Go on, go read it, I dare you. Here is a line from that post: "A blackbody is defined as a body (or system of bodies in thermal contact) which absorbs all of the radiation incident upon it. A blackbody necessarily has an albedo (reflection coefficient) of zero." It is the consensus that wrongfully inserts albedo corrections into its "explanations" of the greenhouse effect. Isn't it funny you should bring up your best criticism on this very topic, and just one day after I wrote that? Do you disagree with what I just wrote? You wrote almost exactly the same words just above. And your other statements above, about Venus, show you haven't begun to understand my simple comparison of Venus and Earth; I doubt you even read it, your comment is so determinedly ignorant of what I have written. Give it up, David Appell. You are obviously not a scientist, nor even the science journalist you claim to be. You bring nothing but ignorant venom to the discussion. You are busted, and I won't be wasting any more time with you.

  73. Mr Huffman,

    Can I get you to comment on Ferenv Miskolcziís SATURATED GREENHOUSE EFFECT theory? I like the logic of what you have presented here and I have also read a summary of the Miskolczi theory at this location;

    I am not sure if these ideas are mutually exclusive or complimentary. I do not have a physics background so please be gentle ...

  74. Good Morning, necromancer1962,

    Everyone is awash in climate theories, which cause untold confusion to a public put at sea by a hotly divided scientific community (the supposed "consensus" to the contrary). In other words, science has already failed the public, by forcing it to judge science, which it is not educated to do. I wrote my article here to inform the public and the scientific community of new, definitive knowledge -- not more theory -- that literally unmakes basic assumptions at the very heart of all the theories I have yet seen.

    That said, I don't know Miskolczi's arguments, but I can comment on the summary at the link you gave. If that summarizes his position, then we are at odds. Consider a few of the statements made at your link:

    "The Earth’s atmosphere differs in essence from that of Venus and Mars. Our atmosphere is not totally cloud-covered, as is Venus..."

    -- My Venus/Earth comparison definitively says no, the two planets' atmospheres are essentially the same, thermodynamically: A hydrostatic, temperature lapse rate structure that governs the equilibrium, or long-term, vertical temperature distribution in both. The clouds of Venus have no effect upon that structure, outside of the clouds themselves (thus clouds do not affect the "climate", to the extent the climate is represented by the mean global surface temperature, so the ideas of Svensmark and Spencer, to name two who are prominent in the climate debate now, are in my view misguided).

    "The surface temperature of Venus is hot, because the total cloud cover prevents heat from escaping to outer space."

    -- Again, my analysis shows clouds have no such long-term effect, as they do not alter the fundamental structure of the atmosphere, long known as the Standard Atmosphere. The stability of the atmosphere against any and all changes within the system is the key fact, which science has lost sight of with the rise of "catastrophic" ideas like plate tectonics and recurring global "ice ages" (and the Milankovitch theory added to "explain" those "ice ages"), wrongly conceived as machine-like and inexorable. Climate science needs to properly acknowledge the implications of the Standard Atmosphere, which my analysis confirms.

    "The Earth is a hot stove in a cold room, heated by the sun."

    -- The Earth is not a hot stove, heating the atmosphere; the radiative physics experts are operating on a fundamentally false assumption (and misusing the blackbody equation, within the atmosphere, as well). The atmosphere is fundamentally heated by direct absorption of incident solar radiation (infrared, or IR, in the troposphere); note, many mistakenly call this fundamental absorption of IR the greenhouse effect, when it is really just how the Sun directly warms the atmosphere. Why this common sense understanding has been officially dismissed -- if the atmosphere can absorb IR from the surface, how can you ignore direct absorption of IR from the Sun, which literally turns the real physics upside down -- is a good question; I put it down to a tragic setting aside, for at least a generation, of the Standard Atmosphere and its implications.

    "The Earth’s atmosphere maintains a constant effective greenhouse-gas content and a constant, maximized, “saturated” greenhouse effect that cannot be increased further by CO2 emissions (or by any other emissions, for that matter)."

    -- There is no greenhouse effect, of increasing temperatures with increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide (or any other particularly IR-active, also known as "greenhouse", gas).

  75. Thank you for such a considered response.

    My understanding of your analysis is that the temperature profile of the atmosphere of a planet is a function of the energy profile of the sun that it orbits, the distance at which it orbits and the atmospheric pressure at any particular altitude (since the distance between molecules of air is far more important thermodynamically than the composition of those molecules).

    Therefore changes in that temperature profile would result from cyclical changes in the energy profile of the sun and any variations in the rotation and/or orbit of that planet as this would change the distance involved (I not aware of any mechanism that would change the atmospheric pressure of a planet, but I could be wrong on that).

    This means that any discussion or analysis of the interaction of the various fluids of that planet (gaseous or liquid) with the energy profile that is currently in effect is an analysis of the weather (either specific events or overall trends for whatever time frame is being analysed) and not the climate as defined temperature profile over time.

    Have I understood your position correctly?

  76. necromancer1962,

    I won't speculate on precisely what you mean by "cyclical changes in the energy profile of the sun", and "variations in the rotation and/or orbit" of the planet; these seem vague to me. I will only keep my answer short and say, the Venus/Earth comparison I have done shows that the only thing affecting the mean global surface temperature of the Earth is the intensity of the incident solar radiation, particularly in the infrared region which heats the atmosphere. Even purely cyclical changes in the Sun's output intensity (which would return it always to the same level at the end of each period) cannot change the Earth's surface-temperature "climate", over time spans much greater than the cycle period. So yes, I agree with your conclusion. Climate scientists may want to change their definition of the climate, otherwise resign themselves to talking about the weather on various time scales. I would recommend they not change the Standard Atmosphere on the basis of their surface temperature reconstructions, any time soon. The Standard Atmosphere is better than anything I have seen in climate science, to date, and that includes radiative transfer theory.

  77. You're saying Venus and Earths atmospheres are warmed by infrared radiation, but What about the visible and ultraviolet light? How can it be neglible? If it gets reflected, some energy is lost to space without heating the planet.

    Some examples how albedo affects temperature:
    - A black shirt gets warmer than a white shirt in the sun.
    - If there is still snow cover at the end of winter, temps will not increase as quickly.
    - Air temperatures are lower on cloudy days.

    You said it yourself:
    Venus receives 1.91 times the energy that Earth receives, and it appears very bright at the sky, but this total of 1.91 times includes all wavelengths, so Venus cannot possibly absorb all this energy!
    If you're saying a bright planet will become as warm as a dark planet (all else equal), you're claiming that mirrors don't work!

  78. Mr Huffman,

    I think that you have understood what I meant by my terminology very well in the end. I would like a little clarification for something that you refer to: Standard Atmosphere. Are you referring to the US Standard Atmosphere model or the International one or are they interchangeable in this context?

    Thank you.

  79. Good Morning, Iya,

    Yours is a good question to once again make one of my continuing basic points: I don't have all the answers--yet. I am learning, at my own pace, as I go. I have the scientific background necessary to learn anything, however, and what I have learned of climate science, particularly the definitive evidence of the Venus/Earth comparison I have made, assures me that NOBODY has all the answers in climate science; none of the consensus "understanding" is really "settled science". But enough of that. Here is my scientific answer (for the moment) to your question:

    If you would read my second response to biocab, earlier, about the 1.91 factor, and my first response to Celeste, about blackbodies and using the incident radiation, that would be my response to you now. (I have also posted a new short article on the blackbody problem, on the main blog page.) Except I would add that I look to the things I do NOT know to teach me, and I don't know why the stratosphere is as it is. The climate scientists seem to emphasize the absorption of ultraviolet there, so I currently tentatively accept that, but I am not wedded to that as THE "explanation" for the temperature structure of the stratosphere. And if you look at the temperature profile for Venus, it is quite ambiguous above the tropopause; it looks like it has no stratosphere, that is, one like ours, with a positive temperature lapse rate with increasing altitude. Why is it not as plain as Earth's? Because it has no oxygen, hence no ozone, but only carbon dioxide? I don't know. I have other questions I don't know the answer to, but I don't want to be tiresome when all I really need to do is say there is much we (not just me, but everyone, including climate scientists) still don't know. What I have done is found an amazing island of solid ground in the middle of the sea of unknowns, called the Venus/Earth comparison. And getting that, and only that, across on this page is my modest aim. (You might want to take a look at Will Pratt's article on the "diurnal bulge and the greenhouse effect". He has thought longer on this than I have, and maybe you will find more answers there. But we are all on our own paths to the full truth in this, since the climate scientists failed us by pretending, no doubt even to themselves, that they already had the truth.)

  80. Good Morning, necromancer1962,

    When I first read "energy profile of the sun", I thought, "does he mean the Planck distribution, thus the radiating temperature of the Sun? And why would he drag the Sun's 'energy profile' in, when it should be obvious we are talking about the energy, or temperature, profile of the Earth's atmosphere?" So I was genuinely puzzled.

    I used the U.S. Standard Atmosphere, because that is what I found quickly on the internet. I try to use the most readily available and generally accepted (by scientists) information, because I want others to be able to find it easily (not in some obscure journal, or behind a paywall, for example).

  81. Dr Huffman,

    I feel that I am creeping up on a "Eureka" moment. I re-read this page and all comments and some things are becoming clearer and I feel that I am asking better questions.

    Firstly, thank you for the reference to the Will Pratt's article. It is another example of simple science being applied in a clear and concise way.

    With regards to the relationship between air pressure and temperature for a set level of energy input, I see the mechanism for this being that the number of air molecules (for which air pressure is a measure) dictates the number of photon to molecule interactions and the distance between molecules affecting the level of molecule collisions for heat transference and retention. This means that the size of the molecule is not important. After all if you throw a tennis ball at a baseball you will get a bigger reaction from the baseball than if you throw the same tennis ball at a bowling ball. The energy in will equal the energy out in both cases.

    Looking at long term temperature profile of Earth it may be an interesting exercise to plot the relevant energy output of the Sun to the changes in the distance from the Sun caused by the eccentricities of the Earth's orbit. Seeing where the confluence of low energy output from the Sun intersect with greater orbital distances could be quite revealing for significant climate events in the past as would the intersection of high energy output and smaller orbital distances.

  82. necromancer1962,

    Good, I am glad to hear you are willing to study everything here, to understand the basic ideas. You are already ahead of most, especially the "experts", who refuse to learn. I'm also glad the Pratt article was helpful to you.

    Your last paragraph brings up the Milankovitch theory, which I won't get into here, except to say that the theory's clear physical shortcomings have, like the greenhouse theory, been ignored in order to use it to vainly speculate, with coarse modelling and noisy data, far beyond science's ability to verify those speculations. It is no more trustworthy than the greenhouse theory.

  83. My previous last paragraph is more about looking at the variables that you are using for your original analysis. Using the same arithmetic that you used to compare Earth to Venus, I have worked at that when you look at the perihelion (91.4m miles) and aphelion (94.5m miles) of the Earth's orbit, the temperature at 1000 mb changes by +2.5 K at the perihelion and -2.3 K at the aphelion. I do not think that the problem with the Milankovitch theory is the idea about the changes in the distance between the Earth and the Sun affect climate. (You have proven here that distance is a critical variable.) The real problem is that there is a significant unknown in the relevant energy output from the Sun in the past. While we have seen some cyclical patterns in recent times, we cannot be sure how those patterns have actually varied in the past in both magnitude, timing and duration.

  84. necromancer1962,

    I see. It looks like you have found your own research problem to pursue. The math you have presented is correct, but you are talking about short-term variations on the scale of seasons, a discussion which goes beyond the long-term equilibrium of the Standard Atmosphere I compared with Venus, and the discussion here (but readers should note, my comparison was with a single snapshot of Venus, in October 1991, which implies the Venus atmosphere is essentially always at equilibrium--further evidence in support of carbon dioxide as a heat "lubricant", or hastener of equilibrium, since Venus's atmosphere is 96.5% CO2). So I will just say good luck with your research, wherever it takes you.

  85. necromancer1962,

    I received your further comment, but since it brings up a political ramification of the incompetent consensus, rather than just the specific science of my Venus/Earth comparison, we won't get into that here. You can e-mail me at (but I don't promise to answer every e-mail, either). I don't want comments here to get into political arguments or what a scientist might call "idle chitchat" (or complex theories of the physics of the atmospere, for that matter, for the sake of lay readers), if I can help it. But thank you for passing on word of my work; I agree with you that keeping silent certainly achieves nothing.

  86. Dr Huffman,

    I did a little digging through the NASA website and Wikipedia and got some data on Titan. Using your calculation process explained above and assuming that the average distance that Titan is from the Sun is the same as Saturn (on the basis that Titan orbits Saturn and therefore the time and distance it is further away is equally matched by the time and distance it is closer), I found that at 1000 mb, sqrt (1 AU/9.5 AU) * 287.4 K = 93.2K which seems to match the air pressure to temperature graph that was supplied.

    Your proof seems to have another confirmation point.

  87. Good Morning, necromancer1962,

    That was good news, until I found Titan's pressure-vs-temperature data at

    and found that the Titan atmospheric temperature is about 93K at its surface, where the pressure is about 1,400 mb, not 1,000 mb. So I think you misread the pressure (which is easy to do on the graph I found). I did a quick check of a few points on the Titan curve, and the temperatures there appear to be between 2 degrees (at 200 mb pressure) and 7 degrees (at 1,000 mb) higher than expected; but that is working off a very cramped pressure axis and a thick-lined curve, with substantial error possible, so those are definitely preliminary numbers only. It is worth checking into more thoroughly (maybe reflected solar radiation from nearby Saturn contributes a few degrees to Titan's temperature--but see how quickly we get into speculation, which must be rigorously checked out, rather than hard facts). It is generally not a good idea to try to do physics on the fly in quick blog posts, I have found. There is too much empty theorizing everywhere now, and I would prefer not to add to the confusion. So I will just stand by the Venus/Earth comparison here, because I know it will stand up.

  88. Dr Huffman,

    Your source seems to be a little more rigorous that what I found but again the graphs are less than clear and not well laid out. Still I think it has promise but you are correct in saying that it is not definitive and there may well be other significant factors involved. Also the position of Titan in the orbit around Saturn itself may be a factor as I am sure that if Titan is on the Sun side of Saturn the results would be substantially warmer than if the measurements were taken while Titan had Saturn between it and the Sun.

  89. Correction: The Titan temperatures appear to range from about 7 degrees too LOW near its surface, to just about right near its "tropopause" (300 - 200 mb).

  90. this idea has been suggested by others such as steve goddard and lubos motl but I see at least two things; the ideal gas law doesn't hold throughout V's atmosphere because of the high pressures; & venus looks very bright to us here on mother earth because it reflect a lot of sunlight & you have to consider this albedo when using the T^4 rule. what do you get when you use van der waals equation for the co2 gas and you use the different albedos between venus and earth?

  91. Good Morning, margolin,

    I would ordinarily just not allow a comment like yours, because it simply ignores everything in my original article, and in the comments to this point. As an example of the unfocused and incompetent public debate on climate, however, it warrants a response.

    Before my Venus/Earth analysis, the basic temperature lapse rate structure of the atmosphere was seen only vaguely, or qualitatively, as a strong argument against the greenhouse effect hypothesis, particularly with respect to Venus's high surface temperature. Compare the following quotes of Steve Goddard found at

    with my quantitatively verified findings:

    "I’m not sure where anyone got the idea that I am suggesting that there isn’t a greenhouse effect on Venus. It certainly wasn’t from anything I have written. This is a discussion of relative magnitude."
    -- I say categorically, based upon my comparison of the Venus/Earth temperature data, that there is no greenhouse effect, period.

    "I’m not making any attempt to explain what the heating mechanism is. Just pointing out that the temperature profile in Venus’ atmosphere indicates it is an adiabat."
    -- My analysis confirms the Standard Atmosphere, and thus quantitatively and precisely confirms this qualitative observation.

    "There isn’t a large difference in lapse rates, and the albedo of Venus is very high, so it’s distance from the Sun has little effect on temperature."
    -- Obviously, from my comparison of the temperatures of Venus and Earth at corresponding atmospheric pressures, the Sun is the ONLY thing that DOES have an effect. In particular, there is no "greenhouse effect", and there is NO ALBEDO effect.

    Defenders of the consensus think they know what they are talking about, but the Venus/Earth comparison I have made quantitatively and definitively shows they do not, and why. Your main points, which are theirs too, have already been answered here, but you and they haven't begun to understand, or accept, how much you don't know after all.

    Defenders of the consensus particularly need to be re-educated regarding the proper use of the Stefan-Boltzmann equation, and I have tried to make it plain here and on my most recent blog post, "Blackbody: The Key Error in Climate Science". At this point, I will only say, you cannot "correct for albedo" in using the S-B equation, because a blackbody has zero albedo. To make it even plainer, reflection takes place within the atmosphere, where not only radiation but convection and conduction are occurring; the surface to be drawn around the Earth system to replace it with a blackbody must be outside of the atmosphere, so making albedo corrections amounts to correcting for something happening in the interior of the "blackbody". Now I know that goes right over the heads of consensus defenders, which is why I simply point to my Venus/Earth analysis and say, "there is no room in these results for an albedo effect at all", and I say that is a definitive finding for science. At least a whole generation of scientists has been miseducated on this, apparently because the radiative transfer theory has managed to kluge together something that appears (to its believers) to work for adding radiation components--but does not work for the basic thermodynamics.

  92. margolin,

    Here is a sampling of what you are ignoring (no, you are not just "asking questions", you are ignoring all that has already been quite simply and clearly explained):

    From my very first response, to Trond Arne:
    "The primary point of this article is that we have to compare atmospheric temperatures at equal pressures in the two atmospheres, and when we do that we find the Venus atmospheric temperature is always just 17% higher than the corresponding (same pressure level) temperature in Earth's atmosphere -- and that essentially constant factor is due solely to the two planets' relative distances from the Sun, nothing else."

    From my article above:
    "...this result also flies in the face of those who would say the clouds of Venus reflect much of the incident solar energy, and that therefore it cannot get 1.91 times the power per unit area received by the Earth -- the direct evidence presented here is that its atmosphere does, in fact, get that amount of power, remarkably closely."

    From my second reply to biocab:
    "...we know Venus receives, on average, 1.9 times the power per unit area that Earth receives, simply from their relative distances from the Sun, as my article discussed. What is truly remarkable is, a good portion of that power is reflected back into space by Venus's thick cloud cover (which makes the planet particularly bright to Earth observers), yet the Venus atmosphere is still heated by 1.9 times the power that heats the Earth atmosphere, as the temperature data shows. Thus we know that the visible portion of the Sun's radiation is not what heats the two atmospheres (because Venus doesn't take in 1.9 times as much visible light as the Earth, it takes in substantially less). Both atmospheres do, however, absorb infrared, and the comparison I have made shows they both must absorb the same portion of the incident infrared from the Sun, thus preserving the 1.9 power ratio calculated from their distances from the Sun. Furthermore, they must absorb this portion directly, not after absorption and emission from the surface, since the surfaces of Earth and Venus are likewise very different (deep ocean vs. solid crust) and would take up different fractions of the infrared, which again would spoil the 1.9 power ratio that is in fact indicated by the Venus/Earth temperature comparison."

  93. but your spending a lot of words to say something that obviously can't be true. saying that "the Venus atmosphere is still heated by 1.9 times the power that heats the Earth atmosphere, as the temperature data shows" is a violation of energy conservation. how is it not?

    the bond albedo is 0.9. the power hitting atop the atmosphere is 1.91 x earth's. V's atmosphere is in equilibrium, so any heat gained is equal to heat lost. so the energy in V's whole atmosphere has to be (1-0.9) * 1.91 x energy in earth's atmosphere.

    the heat doesn't go down through V's atmosphere and then up and out. it's in equilibruim. the energy [total] is constant. that's why scientistys are so amazed with venus -- little heat going in, but a high temp.

  94. margolin,

    You insist upon selectively filtering what you read. The very next lines after the words of mine you quoted are "Thus we know that the visible portion of the Sun's radiation is not what heats the two atmospheres (because Venus doesn't take in 1.9 times as much visible light as the Earth, it takes in substantially less). Both atmospheres do, however, absorb infrared, and the comparison I have made shows they both must absorb the same portion of the incident infrared from the Sun, thus preserving the 1.9 power ratio." The VISIBLE DOES NOT HEAT THE ATMOSPHERE, so it doesn't matter that much of it is reflected. All that matters is that the portion of the incident solar radiation that heats the Earth atmosphere must be the same portion that heats the Venus atmosphere, in order to explain why only the ratio of the two planets' distances from the Sun is needed to explain the observed simple 1.176 ratio of their temperatures (at any given pressure, outside of Venus's cloud layer).

    Your further comment about the ideal gas law vs van der Waals is irrelevant to the above, but notice I emphasize the hydrostatic structure of the atmospheres, which is part of the definition of the Standard Atmosphere I compared to Venus, and is what counts. My comparison is just over the tropospheric pressures of Earth, 1,000 down to 200 mb, and the ideal gas law is generally used for this region, but I don't really care. As long as the hydrostatic equation applies, the physical explanation I have given for my Venus/Earth results falls out naturally and easily, and even corrects the climate consensus on basic physics as I have previously discussed (such as on the proper use of the blackbody equation). My analysis, comparing the temperatures at points of equal pressure, ONLY DEPENDS upon atmospheric temperature being a function of the pressure, and the hydrostatic condition provides that.

  95. Dr Huffman,

    Your analysis is getting noticed by the blogsphere. You may want to weigh into the debate about your Venus/Earth analysis that is currently going on at Joanne Nova's website;

  96. Good Morning, necromancer1962,

    Thank you. I just did so, before finding your comment awaiting my attention.

  97. so then what's your answer to the question michael hammer poses - how to explain the observed spectrum? you have proposed some kind of nebulous 'funneling,' but what does that mean? better yet, what spectrum does your idea predict?

  98. margolin,

    The purely rhetorical tactics of the defenders of the consensus greenhouse effect are on display in your question, which is disingenuous--rather than admit that the current radiative theory does not explain my Venus/Earth results, they (and you) demand that I provide them a better theory. But I have already addressed this, not only here but on Jo Nova's site, where Mr. Hammer was given space to post his attempt to dismiss my Venus/Earth analysis. I will remind you, first, of one line I posted there: "I do not have all the answers, such as a detailed re-analysis of the radiation graphs [so you already knew my answer to your question before you asked it here, margolin], but Mr. Hammer has not shown, within the context of his own understanding of the consensus theory, why the only difference in atmospheric temperatures between Venus and Earth, over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, is precisely explained by the difference in their distances from the Sun, and nothing else."

    So you already knew my answer, that I don't pretend to have all the answers--I have merely shown, with the cold, hard facts of the Venus/Earth comparison, properly done, that there is no greenhouse effect, which Mr. Hammer was unable to refute. He tried, to which I responded: "the equation Mr. Hammer uses

    (93/67)^2 x .4/.7 = 1.1

    to pretend that an albedo correction can explain my results is scientifically incompetent. I found the RATIO OF TEMPERATURES, Venus/Earth, to be 1.176 (outside the cloud layer), and as PRECISELY predicted solely by the difference in their distances from the Sun [specifically, the ratio of their distances from the Sun], using the Stefan-Boltzmann equation. His equation purports to show the expected ratio in received ENERGY (actually power per unit area) in the two atmospheres is about 1.1, obviously trusting the unwary to conclude that 1.1 is close enough to 1.176, but without realizing that supposed received power ratio is not the same as expected temperature ratio. I trust those with a scientific education understand how disingenuous his 'explanation' really is [obviously, you didn't understand it, margolin]. I consider him personally debunked as an 'authority' by this observation alone. His understanding is simply not to be trusted as scientific--and that is typical of all the defenders of the climate consensus: Readily disproved, but dismissive of the truth as it suits them (in this instance, Mr. Hammer has conveniently forgotten the Stefan-Boltzmann law, that temperature varies as the fourth-root of the incident power, not linearly with it). Go away, Mr. Hammer (and Jo Nova, see how you too have been led astray, by letting this garbage in as authoritative science)."

    I have specifically emphasized that my contribution has been to find and communicate the definitive FACTS, not theory, that DISPROVE the consensus greenhouse effect hypothesis. But the defenders--including you--refuse to face these facts, insisting upon parroting their theory, no matter how inanely (as Mr. Hammer did), and throwing off their responsibility to show how their theory can explain my clear finding, that Venus's atmosphere is really warmed by 1.91 times the power per unit area as is Earth's atmosphere (not 1.1 times, note), despite its much larger albedo, and precisely as expected SOLELY FROM ITS SMALLER DISTANCE FROM THE SUN. All I have heard from the defenders is garbage like Mr. Hammer's ridiculous equation above, and the inept refrain that the absorption of infrared by the atmosphere by itself proves the consensus greenhouse effect, which I have simply and clearly shown is factually false, and given the physical reason why: The atmosphere is heated by absorbing INCIDENT SOLAR INFRARED (which is not reflected), and increasing the carbon dioxide in the air (from Earth's 0.04% all the way up to Venus's 96.5%) does not increase the temperature at any given pressure, at all, as the actual greenhouse effect requires.

  99. margolin,

    I won't allow any further comments from you or any other defender of the consensus that merely shows you are not listening to a thing I have said. I just got through telling you that the mere absorption of infrared by carbon dioxide does not prove the greenhouse effect, as you believe.

  100. Harry,

    Many Thanks for your clear and simple analysis of the Venus versus Earth atmosphere and their corresponding pressure-temperature correlations explained only by differences of insolation. This is science the way I like it!

    I especially like your idea of explaining corresponding atmosphere temperatures by direct infrared heating of the atmosphere itself rather than indirect heating of the atmosphere by the heated surface of a planet.
    There is only one question I have: As for the earth there´s a theory that very large volcanic eruptions or the "nuclear winter" - fallout - and resulting ash clouds or other large particles would lead to extensive cooling of the earth´s climate.
    How would that fit your "direct heating" theory? I know you stated repeatedly that you do not have all the answers but I would simply like to hear your opinion on this.

    I am setting up a German "skeptical" climate blog stating that no GHE exists and will include my German translation of your excellent article. And perhaps some Germans would ask me the same question I asked you now.

    Many Thanks again,


  101. Good Afternoon, Matthias,

    Thank you for your positive response. The truth is that I don't have a "theory" of atmospheric warming, I primarily just have the facts of the observed Venus/Earth temperature ratio, and a solid physical insight into the logical consequences of those facts; I say the atmosphere is fundamentally warmed toward its equilibrium "Standard Atmosphere" vertical temperature distribution by direct absorption of incident solar radiation, because if it were not so warmed then the Venus/Earth temperature ratio would not be just that required by the ratio of the two planets' distances from the Sun--the surface of the Earth is mostly ocean, while that of Venus is solid crust, and these two very different surfaces (liquid vs. solid) would absorb different fractions of the incident infrared (IR) radiation, and we wouldn't see the precise 1.176 temperature ratio that we do.

    I would like to continue to avoid speculative theory on this web page, and just say yet again that it is just a fact, from my Venus/Earth comparison, that there is no greenhouse effect of an increase of atmospheric temperature, at any given pressure, with an increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide (or other strongly IR-active gas). You are welcome to write me at for my simple thoughts on your volcanic ash question (provided I can come up with some that I consider reasonable and helpful).

  102. jae,

    I received your comment, citing a reference that claims heating of the Venus atmosphere by internal planetary heat, but you have ignored what I have shown in my Venus/Earth comparison, and obviously only want to advertise the theory put forward in that paper. In my second reply to Alberto Miatello, above, I noted that such heating is ruled out by my Venus/Earth comparison, because only the ratio of the distances of the two planets from the Sun is needed to explain the observed temperature ratio; no internal heating is required.

  103. jae,

    Yes, you missed my links to the data. The first is in the sentence, "From the temperature and pressure profiles for the Venusian atmosphere, ...", which is a link to the Venus data. I also gave a link to the Standard Atmosphere, but you can find that data with an internet search on "standard atmosphere" (as I replied to necromancer1962 earlier, I used the 1976 Standard Atmosphere--I have it also in the "CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics").

    I have found that science requires dispassion (except for the thrill of discovery, of learning a new, synthesizing truth), and I approach comments here as a science teacher intent upon communicating critical facts. When I get comments that ignore the facts I am communicating, I reserve the right not to allow them into my "classroom". Your further comments are angry, not dispassionate and not discerning (as my having to point out the links I gave to the data shows), and they don't get in either; but I have responded to you. I won't respond to further emotional outbursts such as you have submitted, however. I will just suggest you create your own blogspot or wordpress web site, for your own use; they are free.

  104. Harry, thank you for your response. It has helped to put things into perspective.

  105. Thank you. For other readers, necromancer1962 is referring here to my response to his latest comment on my "Incompetent Climate Consensus Defenders" (Oct. 18, 2011) post.

  106. I came here from a link at Jo Nova’s site.

    What the author of this post has found is an interesting numerical coincidence. It works at 1000 mb, but fails at other pressure levels. For example, at 500 mb the author’s theory predicts a Venus temperature of 296 K, but it’s actually 283 K.

    You can do the same calculations for Mars, which receives a power per unit area of 0.43 that of Earth and so which the author’s theory predicts has a radiating temperature of 0.81 that of Earth. But at a pressure of 100 Pa (1 mb), the author’s theory predicts a Martian temperature of 160 K, but it’s actually 201 K. And so on.

    As the author does note, his predictions for Venus fail at many pressure levels (300-600 mb), but that is indeed a large failure for a theory. Meanwhile, the standard theory of planetary temperatures, which of course does include the greenhouse effect and some serious radiative transfer science, does explain all observed features of the planets. One can’t simply disregard a theory that makes better predictions in favor of one that succeeds at some places but fails over a rather wide range.

    You really can’t explain planetary temperatures without a strong greenhouse effect on Earth and a massive one on Venus. As the poster on Jo Nova’s site wrote, the observed spectrum of outgoing radiation for Earth and Venus show the strong absorption due to water vapor, carbon dioxide, ozone, and methane. That blocked radiation warms the planet’s atmosphere, and is experimental proof of the greenhouse effect.

    The author’s post is an interesting try, though.

    Sources for T/P profiles:

  107. Good Morning, f...,

    Your Venus number is simply wrong. I have linked to the source data so anyone can verify the numbers I posted in the article here. Go on, look -- I didn't have to PREDICT the Venus temperature at 500 mb, I got it off the same source graphs you reference, and it is NOT 283K, but 291.4 (+/- 1.4K), as my table shows. As I intimated in the article, and commented upon numerous times since, in comments here and elsewhere, only inside the sulfuric clouds of Venus does the precise 1.176 Venus/Earth temperature ratio clearly slip, and there the Venus temperature is a consistent, and modest, 5 degrees or so below 1.176 x Earth temperature (never is it ABOVE, as required by the greenhouse hypothesis). Note how the observed ratio comes back to that 1.176 ratio (to within 1.5K, with an estimated uncertainty of 1.4K in the observed Venus temperature) at 200 mb, above the cloud top.

    You clearly haven't read my article closely enough to understand it, nor apparently have you read the earlier comments. I mentioned Mars in my response to "nazlfrag", and pointed out that the maximum, i.e. surface, pressure on Mars is just around 6.5 mb, which takes it out of the range for comparison with Earth's troposphere, into the upper stratosphere of Earth--where the physics is different, and the negative temperature lapse rate governing the troposphere no longer applies.

    I don't have a theory, as you claim, I have the OBSERVED Venus/Earth temperature ratio over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, and I find that ratio is precisely explained by the two planets' distances from the Sun, nothing else. Since Venus has 96.5% carbon dioxide, while Earth has only 0.04%, I state as FACT, not theory, that there is no greenhouse effect, of increased atmospheric temperature with increased carbon dioxide.

    You have claimed that one cannot explain the Venus (or any planet's) temperatures without the greenhouse effect, but that is just what I HAVE done; what YOU need to realize is that you can't explain MY factual result (of a Venus/Earth temperature ratio that depends only upon the ratio of the two planets' distances from the Sun, over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures) USING the greenhouse effect--again, simply because THERE IS NO increase in temperature due to the MUCH greater concentration of carbon dioxide in Venus's atmosphere. I realize you, along with 97% (some now say 98%) of climate scientists, are incompetent to handle what should be a simple comparison of observed temperature and pressure data, due obviously to your desire to defend the consensus and show me to be wrong. Unfortunately for science, I am not wrong, as many who HAVE understood my comparison, and can check the source data for themselves, already well know. I note you choose to be anonymous, as most academic scientists far prefer anonymous peer review--it protects the reviewer from public realization of the emptiness of their supposed "expertise". You got the temperature in Venus's atmosphere at 500 mb wrong, and tried to use that against my analysis and many insights. I charge you and all the consensus climate defenders (as well as "lukewarm" greenhouse believers like Jo Nova) with incompetence of the first order, for not properly confronting, understanding and accepting my Venus/Earth analysis. In all of you, the tragedy of modern scientific incompetence continues, unfaced and uncorrected.

  108. P.S. on Mars:

    Even at its 6.5 mb surface pressure, the Mars temperature varies too wildly to definitively compare with anything, from which I deduce that Mars's thin atmosphere is not near enough to an equilibrium state (as Venus clearly is) to compare with Earth's Standard Atmosphere.

  109. jae,

    I got your comment, but the harsh personal judgment disqualifies it from appearing here. And if you now claim to agree with my greenhouse effect analysis, why did you approach it in your first comment (which I also didn't allow in) as being "very, very wrong"? You judged what you did not in fact understand (that my findings clearly deny any need for an internal heat on Venus to explain the atmospheric temperatures) and approached me in a harsh, negative manner ("very, very wrong") from the first, and you still think me "disingenuous". I think that your thinking is muddied and misdirected by a subjective emotional attachment to a theory--and you need to let that harsh emotion go, and also remember that the whole point of my analysis is to show the definitive facts that disprove the greenhouse effect hypothesis, not to lay out the many theories of climate science (which I found have only been confusing everyone, and keeping them from focusing upon the decisive evidence).

  110. Thanks so much for your analysis of my comments, I know I had missed something, well a few things, but the size of the molecules was a big one, pardon the pun. It's interesting that you have sparked debate elsewhere, first at Jo Novas excellent site (well mostly excellent) and now even Watts site is considering the latest rebuke from no less than Lord Monckton. Your blog may be small but the ideas contained within are astronomically huge, and will eventually make their impact because the science is correct. Well, correct as far as I can see. It must be frustrating dealing with those who even though they are skeptical of the doomsayers, they still cling to these unproven fundementals as if they were commandments. I wish you the best of luck on your journey, and try to keep up the good manners you obviously have and try to be lenient on those who are open minded enough to at least consider your perspective.

    Have yourself a merry Christmas and all the best for the new year.

  111. Good Afternoon, nazlfrag,

    Thank you, and Happy New Year to you and yours. You might be interested in my latest post, added just this morning, "Continuing Vain Climate Debates", which I wrote in response to a WUWT article today.

    Your mention of politeness is well taken, and of course I try to always remember to remain dispassionate and focused upon the facts. I do not want to add to the climate of war between the various climate factions, as it were. Nevertheless, I see myself in the climate debates as a grown-up, trying to get children to learn something new that they don't want to hear, so like any parent, I have to walk the line between patience and firmness (and I, like any parent, am not perfect, "knowing all").

  112. Harry, something that is in the process of being published that seems to vindicate what you are saying and takes it further using a number of planetary bodies in the solar system.

  113. Good Evening, Truthseeker,

    I keep telling people I don't have a theory, I have the definitive facts, and a good physical insight into their consequences. My communicated facts don't need vindication, people need to start understanding that they are the bare facts, and MUST BE FACED. I looked at the article you reference, and found this statement:

    "What keeps the surface of Venus so immensely hot is not a ‘runaway greenhouse effect’ caused by copious amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere as claimed by the current theory... but the sheer magnitude of its atmospheric pressure delivering enormous kinetic energy to the ground."

    That is clearly false, and these are poor physicists, writing about atmospheric pressure "delivering kinetic energy" (a "perpetual free energy" device, do you see?). Compare it with the truth as I stated it in my article here:

    "Keeping it simple, the atmospheres must be like sponges, or empty bowls, with the same structure (hydrostatic lapse rate), filled with energy by the incident solar radiation to their capacity to hold that energy."

    In short, compressing the lower atmosphere doesn't heat it, it merely allows it to retain more heat energy per volume than the lower-pressure levels above. All of the energy is provided by the Sun. The pressure distribution simply dictates vertical temperature distribution, which constitutes the structure, or energy-retaining form, of the "bowl" I likened the atmosphere to. Perhaps "bowl" was the wrong word to use, try "glass": Heat energy is poured into the atmosphere by the Sun like water into a glass, and that glass is simply wider (that is, the atmosphere is denser, and can hold more heat energy) the farther down it goes.

    Climate scientists will not have a correct theory until they honestly and competently face the definitive facts of my Venus/Earth comparison.

  114. Harry,

    Thank you for pointing out the different mechanisms involved. Your analogy is quite clear and makes perfect sense to me now.

  115. Amazing. And real science, to boot. You know, Warmists often call skeptics "conspiracy theorists", but in actuality, CTs have no respect for the truth and are not willing to hear it.

    All those who oppose Global Warming are blacklisted. This isn't science.

    Continue to spread the word. Hopefully science will get its good name back.

  116. On the subject of back radiation, If I look at a plot of the solar spectrum, looking at the sun, I do not see any back radiation shown. Surely this proves that there is no back radiation?

  117. Good Morning, Kelvin,

    If the solar spectrum plots you have to look at are like those I have seen on the internet, you will find they only show the solar spectrum over a wavelength range that cuts off at about 2 microns wavelength or less, whereas graphs of the so-called downwelling longwave radiation, or backradiation, of the radiative transfer theorists typically range between 400 and 1700 inverse centimeters (wavenumber units), or about 6 to 25 microns wavelength. I have not seen a solar spectrum that could be directly compared with a "backradiation" spectrum, over the same wavelength range. The "backradiation" peak is much smaller than the peak in the solar spectrum, and is also measured differently, as "W/m^2 per steradian per inverse micron" (or actually, "mW/m^2 per steradian per inverse centimeter"), rather than the "W/m^2 per inverse micron" of the solar spectrum. The "per steradian" tells us that the "backradiation" is really omnidirectional heat energy, coming from the full hemisphere of the sky, while the solar radiation transmitted through the atmosphere is highly directional, coming from a source (the Sun) that is only about half a degree wide in the sky. From my factual Venus/Earth comparison, it is apparent to me that the radiative transfer theory is unable to deal with the difference between highly directed radiation from the Sun and the omnidirectional radiation actually involved in heat transport within the atmosphere; the theory appears to me to be merely a "light extinction" model (how much of a highly directional incident light beam is removed in passing through a nearly transparent medium), that misses the real physics of atmospheric warming entirely, and in fact turns that real physics upside down.

  118. Harry, another simple use of logic and real physics to completely debunk the "greenhouse effect" can be found here.

  119. Good Morning, Truthseeker,

    In a quick reading, I did not find that article particularly clear (in its lack of definition of "radiation temperature"), and again, it is theoretical rather than simply factual as the Venus/Earth comparison is. The one statement that stands out in it as clearly true, to me, is

    "GHG theory postulates back-radiation from cold atmospheric CO2 is absorbed by the surface, heating it more. This violates Second Law of thermodynamics (energy can only be transferred from hot to cold bodies), leading to creation of energy, a violation of the First Law of thermodynamics (energy conservation), and the impossible perpetual motion machine AGW promoters need to cause eternal global warming."

    He is saying that the energy imparted by the "backradiation" is re-emitted by the surface at a higher temperature, the temperature of the surface. He is right, this is an obvious error in the consensus theory, which consensus scientists refuse to understand. To me, the most obvious and fundamental violation is that of the conservation of energy, which I pointed out in my blog post, "Runaway Global Warming is Scientific Hysteria".

  120. Good Afternoon Harry,

    I have been having a debate on an older thread on Jo Nova's site with a "Jose_X" and bringing this Venus/Earth analysis to the table. He gives a very considered reply here. I have to say at this point this I am a little over my head in a physics sense.

  121. Good Morning, Truthseeker,

    I suggest you point Jose_X to my responses above to Trond Arne, Brian H, my second response to biocab, and to Richard Sharpe. His "considered reply" is almost entirely off-base, as when he writes,

    "Now, at what point is the s-b [Stephan-Boltzmann] result supposed to hold? On earth, apparently, it holds at ground level, but on venus, that relationship held somewhere up in the atmosphere. So Huffman is going to have to probably have the s-b in his model apply at a given pressure since he favored that interpretation. "

    That, and everything he "deduces" from it, is nonsense. I clearly applied the Stephan-Boltzmann equation beyond the atmosphere entirely, and only there. (It definitely doesn't apply at the Earth's surface, as he and the consensus theory supposes.) I deduced (from the hydrostatic condition, as I tried to explain to Richard Sharpe) that one should compare the temperatures in the two atmospheres at points of equal pressure, and found the Venus/Earth temperature ratio was essentially a constant, over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, and that constant (1.176, outside of the Venus cloud layer) was entirely and precisely (PRECISELY) due to the planets' distances from the Sun, nothing else (this last, amazing, fact is what is being disregarded by all who dismiss my findings, including Jose_X). There is nothing in all that about applying the S-B equation at any pressure level within the atmosphere, and Jose_X's whole exposition on this theme is his own fantasy. He is like a student who has gotten the wrong idea in his head, and continues to deny what even the teacher is telling him, because that wrong idea blinds him to what should be a simple thing to understand.

    It should be noted that he seriously considers "coincidence" to be a likely explanation for my clear, and physically coherent (!), findings. That, in fact, is what all of the dismissals of my Venus/Earth comparison really boil down to -- "greenhouse effect" defenders simply want it to go away, because their minds are already made up, they think they already know, irrespective of definitive facts against them.

    The one caveat with my findings is that they cannot be extended into Earth's stratosphere, but greenhouse defenders need to keep in mind that there is a temperature minimum, the tropopause, a barrier to heat transfer by convection and conduction between the troposphere and the stratosphere, and that the latter is subject to quite different physics than the former, as exemplified by its positive temperature lapse rate; and as my troposphere comparison shows, that climate region can be treated independently of what is going on in Earth's stratosphere, with clear and simple results.

    Jose_X is simply misdirecting you from the simple facts with false theory, which is just empty, unsupported speculation.

  122. Harry, thank you for this response. It is clear and concise.

  123. Why doesn't the S-B equation hold at the Earth's surface ?

  124. Good Evening, Roscomac,

    Because there can be only radiation passing into and out of a blackbody, no conduction or convection of heat, in order for the incident radiation to be balanced by the outgoing (which is what the Stefan-Boltzmann formula physically means for a blackbody--maintained at constant temperature, it absorbs all the radiation incident upon it, and radiates the same power away, so incident power must equal emitted power). There is conduction through, and convection from, the surface of the Earth, so the incident and emitted radiations at the surface don't match. (The consensus theory, by claiming the Earth's surface is a blackbody, wrongly substitutes "the sum of all inward power--conduction, convection, AND radiation--is equal to all outward power", for the true Stefan-Boltzmann condition. See, for example, the infamous Kiehl-Trenberth energy budget diagram for the Earth's surface here)

    I was taught, in my earliest university physics class, the simple rule I have given in earlier comments, and in the post, "Blackbody: The Key Error in Climate Science": Draw your "equivalent blackbody" surface around your system of interest so that only radiation is passing into and out of that surface; then the temperature provided by the Stefan-Boltzmann equation, using the intensity of radiation passing into that surface, will be the correct "radiating temperature" of the system, if you want to get the thermodynamics right. For the Earth-plus-atmosphere system, this obviously has to be done beyond the atmosphere. The traditional description of a blackbody is of a cavity in a body maintained at constant temperature, with only a small hole for radiation (no conduction or convection) to pass in and out. The blackbody IS that cavity in that description, filled with an equilibrium thermal radiation field only, and no convective or conductive heat flow in it, or into and out of it. That is my present understanding, and I point to my amazing Venus/Earth finding--that the Venus/Earth temperature ratio is precisely explained by their distances from the Sun, and nothing else--as factual confirmation of that understanding. If I am wrong, I am amazingly, gloriously wrong--and I don't consider myself, or my physical understanding, either amazing or glorious, only competent.

  125. Harry,

    The more I read here the clearer your explanations become.

    However, I'm sure that I was taught at school some 50 years ago that the surface temperature differences between Venus and Earth were due to distance from the sun and the mass of the atmosphere interacting with the gravitational field of the planet.

    That has been my understanding all my life and it is that view which informed my 2008 article entitled

    "Greenhouse Confusion Resolved"

    which I referred you to in a different thread on this blog.

    Isn't this old knowledge that you recently 'rediscovered'?

    I'm amazed that it was all apparently ignored when James Hansen and his colleagues came to the fore because it obviously shows the consideration of radiative gases to have been wholly unnecessary in the first place.

    There is plenty of material describing the lapse rate and its causes yet those persons seem to have had no idea about it or perhaps wilfully ignored it.

    I am currently having problems seeing how the recent paper from Nikolov and Zeller makes any difference other than by providing more data in support. Their ATE seems to be the same phenomenon as the hydrostatic/adiabatic lapse rate.

  126. Good Morning, Stephen,

    That is precisely why I call it the "incompetent climate consensus"(!) But in the generation after you and I learned science, the idolators (yes, I'm afraid so, and Hansen chief among them) of Carl Sagan forsook the previously-established stability of the Standard Atmosphere, for the "catastrophic" idea of "runaway climate". I won't go into the deeper currents of thought that brought that to the fore, and I could only roughly outline them, which current minds, indoctrinated to current theories as dogma, would overwhelmingly dismiss, as my small but definitive climate science contribution is presently dismissed, and as my greater work is even more universally dismissed.

    Perhaps for now, it is just best to say, dismissal of ideas outside of the consensus is the knee-jerk intellect's reaction of choice. And, of course, that this is the result of the miseducation of at least one whole generation of students (including scientists). Whatever scientists knew of the truth about atmospheric warming, as exemplified in the Standard Atmosphere, before the advent of the "runaway climate" paradigm (which, please note, was initially brought into science only because of the belief in regularly recurring global "ice ages"), should have been immediately recalled and rethroned by the simple comparison of the temperatures in the atmospheres of Venus and Earth, as I have done it. They (Hansen, and his consensus) have had 20 years to do that analysis, and most scientists today, climate alarmist or lukewarmer, even when confronted with the simple fact of it, refuse to see it. Simply stated, the Standard Atmosphere rules, in the real world.

  127. "as my small but definitive climate science contribution is presently dismissed, and as my greater work is even more universally dismissed."

    Your 'greater work' is interesting but as yet I find myself unable to make the necessary imaginative leap to accept your interpretations of the evidence.

    Your climate science contribution is now being widely considered because there are many of us educated in the 'old days' who are aware of the concept of the Standard Atmosphere and yet did not realise until recently that the so called consensus in climate science had completely ignored it.

    I for one had the impression for many years that they had included it in their deliberations but apparently not.

  128. Stephen,

    "I find myself unable to make the necessary imaginative leap to accept your interpretations of the evidence."

    I assure all my readers, learning the truth only requires the desire for it (without thought for the time it will take to attain it), and identification of, and undeviating focus upon, the definitive facts, against any false consensus, any reigning paradigm, any blind and incompetent authority. It requires no "imaginative leap"--that comes naturally, delightfully, with the learning. So thinking it does require an imaginative leap, to start the process, is getting the cart before the horse. I deal in the definitive facts, above all else. But they require dispassionate focus--also known as piercing scientific judgment--to use them properly, as the open door to real, secure knowledge, rather than just as the stage for an unending play of competing opinions (as one sees every day on the blog sites).

  129. Good Morning, RKS,

    I received two comments from you, which I inadvertently deleted because they were replies to much earlier comments, and I was expecting them to show up here in proper time sequence instead. My mistake, but I would suggest you simply add a comment at the end next time, rather than replying to another comment, to keep the discussion simple, at least for me. Below are your comments and my response.

    1) "Have you a link to Will Pratt's article please. I've tried Googling with no avail.

    Excellent blog and thread by the way, I'm learning a whole lot anew, being a retired engineer, and the use of basic science in the climate discussion is like a breath of fresh air."

    2) "Perhaps Dr Huffman can update his proof to include a verified account of Titan. Surely it can't be too far ahead before we have sufficient comparative data for Mars and Earth's upper atmosphere."

    As to Will Pratt, he has a site,, where you can click on "CO2 Files".

    With respect to comparing the temperatures in the atmospheres of Earth and Titan, I already commented briefly on that, on Sept. 23 2011, writing: "The Titan temperatures appear to range from about 7 degrees too LOW near its surface, to just about right near its 'tropopause' (300 - 200 mb)." At a pressure of 1050 mb, for example (just above Earth's surface pressure of 1013 mb), using Earth's Standard Atmosphere I calculated the Titan temperature would be 94K, whereas it is actually 87K, or 7K too low to be explained by the simple hypothesis that was shown to be precisely correct for Venus--that, over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, the temperature as a function of pressure depends only upon the distance of the planetary body from the Sun. I have, in my three "Unified Climate Theory" posts, noted that an additional physical cause is needed to explain the 7K discrepancy for Titan's near-surface temperatures, and suggested it is due to particulate haze throughout Titan's atmosphere. Whatever the cause of Titan's modest discrepancy, that discrepancy shrinks with altitude above Titan's surface, so that, when the pressure is down to about 250-300 mb, the discrepancy disappears (at 287 mb, the Titan temperature is 73K, the same as that predicted from my simple procedure in the Venus/Earth analysis). I don't know the reason or reasons for the Titan discrepancy (that it may be due to particulate haze in that atmosphere is just an educated guess on my part, due solely to my observation of the localized effect of Venus's cloud layer--which is also a particulate suspension in the atmosphere), so it would depart from my strong desire to keep focused upon the definitive facts to post further on this, at this time.

  130. Harry, I have been thinking about the Venus cloud layer, and this may also relate to Titan as well. Since clouds are vapour, effectively suspended droplets of liquid, wouldn't they have the effect of spreading the ambient heat across more molecules (liquid having a much higher concentration of molecules than gas) causing a lower temperature to be recorded? This could also be true of suspended particulate matter for Titan.

    Let me know if I have the physics right (in theory).

  131. Good Morning, Truthseeker,

    Yes, something like that; that is why I made the connection between the observed effect of the water-based clouds on Venus, with the likely cause of the similar effect on Titan (the latter's atmosphere, I noted in reading, has solid particulate haze throughout).

    The underlying idea is just that of specific heat--the amount of heat energy needed to raise a given amount (generally, 1 mole) of a substance through 1°C (or equivalently, through 1 Kelvin degree) temperature change. I left my suggestion general, because supposedly there are millions of scientists, or students of science, more familiar than I with the real-world specific heats of various solid, liquid and gaseous molecules. The specific heat at constant pressure of a diatomic ideal gas (such as oxygen or nitrogen, in our atmosphere) is 5R/2--where R is the "gas constant", about 8.31 Joules/mole per degree--or about 21 J/mole per °C. I would expect the specific heat of liquids and solids to be higher (just because their molecules are more tightly bound), and they generally are (I have at hand a small table for a few solids, and they are mostly around 25 J/mole per °C, although carbon is given as 6.1 J/mole per °C; water is, from first-year physical science, 1 cal/g per degree C, which works out to about 75 J/mole per °C--4.19 J/cal times 18g/mole of water). Of course, for quantitative calculations of the effective specific heat, you would also have to consider the density of the particulate suspension--how many particles or droplets per volume of air. I figured the engineers and thermodynamicists would be all over this once I suggested it, and my further input would be unnecessary and unwelcome. In the real world now, of course, my input is unwelcome anyway, to most of those who consider themselves "in the know". You can see, no doubt, how inherently silly it is for laypersons and non-specialists to be tutoring the "experts", but instead of stepping up, the experts and their followers are just standing on their insanely incompetent "settled science". This is all VERY BAD, no matter how you look at it (unless you just keep plugging away at finding the truth, as people like you and I are doing, to the best of our ability and/or to the limit of our resources).

  132. PS, Truthseeker,

    That low specific heat for carbon is for diamond, so throw that out. Generally, for solids at typical environmental temperatures, the specific heat is 3R (about 25 J/mole per degree).

  133. CORRECTION, Truthseeker,

    It suddenly occurred to me--hours later and out of the blue--that an error slipped past my editing of my earlier comment: When I wrote that the specific heat at constant pressure of a diatomic ideal gas was 5R/2, I should have said that was the specific heat at constant volume. The specific heat at constant pressure is an added R, or 7R/2. Now you know why I don't claim to be a genius--it is too easy to make a misstatement while writing, that doesn't get detected before it spreads to others. I can only admit it when it happens.

  134. Been following the comments on this post since it was first put up, waiting to see if someone can come up with a decent rebuttal to your analysis. So far no one has, and I can't see anyone doing it anytime soon. The science seems sound to me, Mr. Huffman.

    I do have a question, or perhaps more of a suggestion, regarding the Titan discrepancy. The way I see it, the significant difference between Titan and Venus is that giant ball that Titan orbits - otherwise known as Saturn. It has been suggested that another moon, Enceladus, is heated to such an extent by Saturn's gravity acting on it that it's likely to have an ocean of liquid water just below its surface. Could that same "gravitic heating" apply to Titan and account for the discrepancy you find in your calculations?

    I fully expect to be wrong about this idea, but I figured I should get it out there nonetheless. If you can tell me why I'm wrong then I'll have learned something - so I have everything to win and nothing to lose except ignorance :)

  135. Good Morning, BJ,

    You have the right spirit, underscoring what I wrote in the first sentence of this article. Your suggestion doesn't immediately set off bells and whistles in my own physical insight, so I recommend diffidence in advancing it as a probable cause of what I am calling the Titan discrepancy here (which is, first and foremost, a modest effect anyway, on the much larger stage of a gravity-bound atmosphere subject to a temperature-governing lapse rate structure). My own sense for now is that the answer lies in the effect of non-gaseous particles on the effective specific heat in a region of the atmosphere; but I did not mean that quantitative answer would be obtained easily, without substantial study. It is not just a matter of the specific heats of various simple elements, but of the modes by which heat energy can be absorbed by molecules in the atmosphere, which I don't think science has well identified yet. In particuler, there is the possibility of collective modes, or heat absorption by a small volume of air, not just by individual molecules; scientists speak of "continuum absorption", and tentatively identify it with dimers, or two molecules stuck together, but I don't know enough myself to dismiss the more general idea of even larger effective absorbers, along the lines of "resonant absorption modes" in the atmosphere. Such additional modes, even if only due to dimers, increases the effective specific heat. The Standard Atmosphere equation for pressure as a function of temperature

    ln(P/Po) = 5.2559 x ln(T/To)

    gives the effective specific heat of our troposphere as

    5.2559 = Cp/R, with R = 8.3142 J/mole per °C.

    or Cp = (10.5) R/2, approximately

    this is 50% larger than the specific heat at constant pressure for a diatomic ideal gas (7R/2), and is commonly explained, as I understand it, as due to water vapor in the atmosphere (producing the so-called "wet adiabatic lapse rate"), but I have learned to question everything until I know the relevant, definitive facts. All of this is just to hint that the devil is in the details, and easy speculation is marshmallow science, with little real intellectual nourishment.

    I am most skeptical today of taking any scientist's speculative suggestion (as of the heating effect, of what would have to be tidal stresses, on Titan, due to Saturn's gravitational attraction) as compelling or even likely. I think it is well established, by my own focused contribution here (not to mention those of many others who have picked apart the climate consensus), that the current theoretical framework of the Earth and planetary sciences is fundamentally flawed--scientists are simply looking at everything through the filters of bad theories believed to be facts. In such a context, I maintain that a scientist's first and foremost responsibility is to correct the theory, with definitive facts, before trying to explain the cosmos using a broken one. In other words, it's a mess right now, but keep up the positive, questing spirit and willingness to voice your insights. From my own experience, you never know when it will pay off.

  136. PS, BJ,

    Then, there is the simpler and more direct point, that I should have thought of first, that your suggestion involves an additional heating of Titan, when the "Titan discrepancy" is of too LOW a temperature, by a few degrees, (and in the atmosphere nearer the surface of Titan), not a higher temperature than expected from the Sun alone.

  137. Thank you for a thorough answer even though your "simpler and more direct point" obviously would have more than sufficed :)

    Don't know why I read the discrepancy as being too high. I guess I'll have to blame the continuous noise produced by my students during class in the hours preceding my post. It appears to have caused some global warming in that round thing on top of my neck...

  138. BJ,

    I originally wrote that the discrepancy was in the direction of "too high", then added a separate comment in correction. Whether that explains your error or not, let's let it all go as water under the bridge, as the main point is that the discrepancy needs to be physically explained in the end. I emphasize this, because the "Unified Climate Theory", which I last posted on here, does not show such a discrepancy between theory and measured surface temperature on Titan, which I count as a serious mark against that theory, as carelessly not even recognizing something that requires a real physical explanation.

  139. I have been asked a question I hope is simple.

    'Why is the temperature of our moon so vastly different to that of the earth?'

    This is based on Venus being closer to the sun and the earth not. If there is no GH effect why would the moon have such a wide temperature range ?

  140. Good Afternoon,

    There are actually two points to be made here, the first point being that the greenhouse effect, as promulgated to the public, is an hypothesized increase in atmospheric temperature with an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide. But that has nothing to do with your question. The question you were asked implies that the greenhouse effect is something quite different, namely, the surface temperature of a planetary body WITH an atmosphere, versus the surface temperature WITHOUT an atmosphere. The questioner is implying that Earth's atmosphere, which keeps its temperature from dropping precipitately during the night, does so because of a "greenhouse effect".

    Actually, without an atmosphere, as on the Moon, heat is lost quickly on the night side through thermal radiation, which carries heat directly away from the Moon at the speed of light. With an atmosphere, on the other hand, heat transfer is not by radiation alone, but also by convection and conduction, mainly the former--and convection is not only much slower than radiation, but it also transfers heat around the planet, within the atmosphere, as well as vertically upward. It is not a "greenhouse effect", of "greenhouse gases", but merely of convective dispersion of heat throughout the atmosphere, and thus much slower heat loss to space.

    Consensus scientists, and even most skeptics of the consensus, misdirect the climate debates by framing the greenhouse effect as "the surface temperature with, versus without, an atmosphere". This misdirection--which might better be called a delusion, except that they won't stop doing it, even after being told of my clear and simple Venus/Earth findings-- has fooled even most skeptics, for a long time now, as well as the lay public trying to find definitive answers. Fundamentally, they do this because they cannot defend the carbon dioxide greenhouse effect that is being foisted upon the public, except indirectly (and wrongly) by falling back on what they most consider "settled science", that being the radiative transfer theory they use to analyze atmospheric warming. That theory requires them to focus upon the temperature at the planetary surface (which they wrongly believe to radiate heat into the atmosphere as a blackbody, thus supposedly constraining the radiative transfer problem, but that is an incompetent belief among scientists today, and just one of a handful of wrong ideas newly illuminated by my Venus/Earth comparison).

    Just tell your questioner that convective heat transfer within a sufficiently large planetary atmosphere, which keeps the planet from cooling very fast--as the Moon does on its dark side--has nothing to do with the "greenhouse effect", correctly stated, of increasing temperature with increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide.

  141. The conclusion appears to be based on a fallacious argument. At 1000 mbar the greenhouse effect on planet earth is primarily due to the presence of water vapor, which is effectively absent on Venus. The main conclusion would appear to lack proper justification.

  142. Tandem78,

    Your criticism misses the mark completely, and marks you as just another empty-headed defender of the consensus, attacking without any good reason whatsoever. If you had read the article, which I doubt you did, you would have known that the Venus/Earth temperature ratio, over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, is due ONLY to the ratio of their distances from the Sun. It does NOT depend upon the concentrations of water vapor in the two atmospheres, any more than it depends upon the concentrations of carbon dioxide.

    I will take no further comments from you, as I know from experience that your kind just keep ignoring the facts I have put forward, in order to keep arguing endlessly.

  143. so in a nut shell, what would be the temperature of Venus today if it had no CO2 in the atmosphere?a

  144. Good Morning, edgar1212,

    Since there is no CO2 effect on temperature for atmospheric concentrations of CO2 between Earth's .039% and Venus's 96.5%, I expect the equilibrium temperature of Venus without any CO2 would be the same as it actually is today. The CO2 climate sensitivity--which the alarmist IPCC claims is 3°C or higher, per doubling of CO2, and the "lukewarmer" skeptics insist is 1°C per doubling--is simply zero.

  145. Using a one layer greenhouse model for Venus is incorrect.

    Look at the "Venus is More Optically Thick Than a One Layer Model Can Give You" section at

  146. Good Morning, Unknown,

    I appreciate that many are honestly trying to understand the details of how the Venus atmosphere is warmed, but your comment (and Postma's distinctly unrevolutionary efforts) is irrelevant to the simple FACT demonstrated here, that the Venus/Earth temperature ratio, at points of equal pressure over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, is physically, entirely and PRECISELY explained by the ratio of the two planets' distances from the Sun, and nothing else. Everyone should be talking about that, because it short-circuits all the discussions about Venus's atmosphere with the basic, fundamental truth, that the atmosphere of Venus, just like that of Earth, is warmed by direct absorption of incident solar radiation.

    Talking about atmospheric layers is a step higher up the food chain, as it were, of getting into details. But I insist that atmospheric scientists WILL NOT explain those further details, unless and until they humbly confront and accept the FACT that the atmosphere is warmed by direct absorption of incident solar radiation, nothing else. I am speaking as just a (to my mind) competent physicist, and saying that accepting that fact, or not, is a test, separating the competent from the incompetent scientist who wants to know the truth about the matter. No one else, apparently, wants to be seen as "merely competent", and admittedly not knowing all the answers.

    I know I have not (yet) been able to answer, quantitatively, the question of how the entirety of Venus's troposphere, below 50km altitude (i.e., the Earth surface pressure level), is warmed. Frankly, it looks to me like different IR-absorbing gases are responsible, in that lower portion of the Venus atmosphere, than that which is responsible for the warming over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, in both the Venus and Earth atmospheres (as both atmospheres absorb the same fraction of the incident solar radiation, in the Earth range of pressures). But I am not going to get involved in theoretical arguments, when I have the fundamental fact, that no one else on the internet (much less everyone, as should be) will even face (no doubt, because it is such a revolutionary change in "accepted" thinking). I am beyond hob-nobbing with the hoi-polloi, who all obviously know nothing, and refuse to bow to the basic facts before they continue to spout off as "experts", thus muddying the public discourse (unacceptably, in my opinion, given the political abuse being made of said "expert" opinions). Everyone needs to shut up and relearn climate science from the bottom up (and that includes, especially, the radiative transfer theorists, and THEIR clearly false "settled science").

  147. Dear Mr Hoffman

    In an earlier comment you noted that convection and conduction are somewhat ignored. In regard to conduction please consider the statement that CO2 may increase the residence time of LWIR within the atmosphere, but decrease the residence time of conducted energy within the atmosphere.

  148. Good Morning, shashumna,

    First, my last name is Huffman, not Hoffman.

    My first thought is, "increase the residence time of LWIR" implies "backradiation" by CO2, which I have shown clearly violates energy conservation, and grossly so. My second thought is to ask you to consider your statement in the light of my statement, "increasing CO2 can only increase the efficiency/speed of heat transport within the atmosphere, by increasing the radiative pathway for such transport". My third thought is, within the atmosphere alone, what conduction is predominant, besides the intrusion of a colder or warmer air mass into a region -- and is this not weather, and doesn't my Venus/Earth comparison enlighten us upon the atmospheric background upon which the weather plays out, rather than the weather itself (in other words, I suspect your statement might refer to weather, not to the overarching, stable atmosphere so well represented by the Standard Atmosphere model)?

  149. Mr Huffman, (sorry about getting your name wrong) I appreciate and am not disputing your Venus/Earth observation.

    I am simply observing enrgy content of any system as a fuction of time, long that delivered energy (IN our ocean-atmosphere-earth case,insolation) stays within a defined area. Again, in regard to our planet the defined area is broadly the land surface, the oceans, and the atmosphere. Whatever the cause of energy entering or leaving a defined area, how long that energy stays before exiting determines T. This leads to a law. "At its most basic only two things can effect the heat content of any system in a radiative balance. Either a change in the input, or a change in the “residence time” of some aspect of those energies within the system."

    When I heard of AGW theory I was rather surprised to learn that, according to them, the only molecules (GHGs) which allow energy to escape (cooling) into space, somehow net heat the system above non radiationg (at common T) atmospheric gases.

    Supposedly a non GHG atmosphere, mostly transparent to incoming insolation, allows the bulk of the insolation to reach the surface, where it the radiates back to space, again for the most part, bypassing the non GHG molecules.

    Now this is what I mean by ignoring convection and thermal dynamics. In such a world the non GHG molecules would warm by collision, or conduction from the surface, which would then conduct to more non GHGs above them, which would allow the surface atmospheric molecules to then recieve more energy from the surface, etc, until convection, further conduction etc basically caused an expanding thermal dynamic equalibrium with a gravity induced lapse rate. So, in your intial response, you forgot to include in your thinking conduction from the surface.

    Now, as I understand it, if we add a so named GHG molecule to such an atmosphere, according to climate scientist, it will redirect some of that surface LWIR energy back to the surface, therby increasing the residence time and heat content of the atmosphere, as solar insolation continues unabated, the system will gain heat while energy escaping is delayed.

    My point is very simple. Asssuming (for now) the climate scientist are correct That single GHG molecule is also recieving conducted energy from the surface, which now has the opportunity to accelerate the loss to space of said conducted energy, which formerly, in the non-ghg molecule, could not radiate to space, therby GHG molecues accelerate the loss of conducted energy, and delay the loss of LWIR radiated energy.

    I leave it to physics to determine what percentage of the energy in the atmosphere from the surface is conducted and how much is radiated, and to determine how often newly excited surface molecules, both atmosphere and ground, lose their energy via radiation, or via conduction. But the fact remains, a radiating GHG molecue, recieving its vibrational energy from conducted energy, accelerates the loss of that energy from the earth's system. This simple fact is my main message.

  150. shashumna,

    I am not going to bother trying to get you to consider either the definitive results of the Venus/Earth comparison here -- what that says about the ability of the surface to heat the atmosphere, beyond the more fundamental lapse rate structure -- or what I have said about the effect of increased CO2, as accelerating heat transport (not just conducted-heat transport). The world is full of "expert" and armchair theorists, each with their own ideas, most at odds with one another and at least partially (in ways they haven't yet figured out, if they are even interested in finding out) at odds with the physical truth. I will merely suggest to my more receptive readers, that conduction (from the surface or within the atmosphere) should be classified as weather, not global climate, and as such is powerless to affect the mean global temperature (as shown by the Venus/Earth temperatures comparison, which denies any surface effect upon that temperature).

    This is the last I will venture to say on your topic, and I will accept no more comments concerning it. This site is about the Venus/Earth comparison, and my position is, that is what you need to assume is correct, not any part of the consensus theory, which is incompetent in the light of that (simple!) comparison.

  151. I don't remember posting that comment about the S-B law in January but I have to agree that climate scientists are quite simply wrong in proposing that gases which have unremarkable properties and exist at trace concentrations control the planet's temperature.

    It is amazing how Climate Scientists always throw up some argument which reverses the burden of proof - such as D. Appell always seems to do.

    Your analysis is quite simply not only right but based on fact whereas his argument against it is his unsubstantiated theory must be right and facts must be wrong because they have this "proof" that the wavelengths of CO2 and GHGs are absorbed somewhat more.

    Like Arrhenius there is no proof but a red herring - how does this disprove the fobserved facts and how did Arrhenius get away with his ludicrous assertion that if his critics couldn't disprove carbonic didn't cause atmospheric heating to the level he claimed he must be completely right ??

    If it were possible for less than 3% of the atmosphere to exert the "heating" effect claimed through IR absorption and re-radiation would not this "ability" show up as a measurable property ?

    Thermal conductivity of GHGs is almost half that of normal air so this property shows no significant energy transport ability - in fact all are pretty damn efficient insulators. And before someone sighs and shakes their head in a condescending manner consider how one could experimentally determine properties such as thermal conductivity exclusive of any radiative effect - perhaps the gases co-operated and ceased radiating whilst the experiment was conducted ?

    Surely thermal conductivity dispels any thought of GHGs being responsible for heating the Earth's surface - there is demonstrably not the energy flow required to achieve heating the something like 2000 times the mass of air that constitutes soil - and the energy deficiency becomes even more disparate when water is considered with its huge latent heat.

    2 - 3 percent of the atmosphere at always lower temperatures than the surface is supposed to be the source of the difference between the average radiating temperature and observed surface temperature when the observed properties do not support any claim of other than negligible energy transport - except the massive amounts water carries around but that is not related to IR radiative effects.

    Of course this demonstrates that per thermal conductivity increasing concentrations of GHGs may actually reduce the thermal conductivity of the atmosphere somewhat negligibly at even tenfold concentrations but am I wrong to believe that thermal conductivity - an experimentally measured property - completely destroys the "back radiative" heating effect of GHGs ?

    If I am wrong to conclude this please show me why or how a gas can have a large radiative energy transmission effect (because at the denisty of the atmosphere and the concentrations of GHGs the claimed effect has to be massive for 3% of 1.225 kg/m^3 of GHGs to heat loose soil at 1200 kg/m^3 or water at 1000 kg/m^3 - neglecting water's other properties) without this property revealing itself to standard Physics ??

  152. Good Morning, roscomac,

    I don't think anyone has solved the riddle of the details of heat transfer in the atmosphere -- between, or among, the three recognized mechanisms for heat transport, i.e., radiation, convection and conduction -- in plain, physically intuitive language. The thermodynamicists think they have, but they have atmospheric heating upside down, thinking that because the surface is warmer than the atmosphere, it must be the cause of atmospheric warming (even though they know the atmosphere directly absorbs a substantial fraction of the incident solar energy). The radiative transfer theorists think they know it all too, and their intransigence in the face of clear, contradictory observations, particularly the Venus/Earth comparison here -- which is definitive against them and the "greenhouse" theory -- is blocking any correction and progress in climate science. Your questions show you are simply, honestly trying to bring back a proper sense of scale, of matching the strength of a (proposed) cause with the strength of an (observable) effect, to the debates over climate theory. That sense of scale, by the way, is alarmingly lacking in many fields, as theoreticians have time and again chosen to cling to false or unsupported theories in the face of increasingly apparent contradictory evidence.

    Some, including me at one time, have likened the theory of "backradiation" to a childish imagining of CO2 as "IR mirrors" in the sky, and even worse, as "IR pumps", so that one gets the unphysical, grossly overlarge loop of energy between atmosphere and surface, that is identified with the "greenhouse effect". Of course the source of that supposed huge loop of energy is just their imagining that the Earth's surface radiates as a blackbody in a vacuum, which any passing physics student should long ago have informed them was a deluded supposition.

    I don't have all the answers to detailed heat transfer, but the Venus/Earth comparison shows us key points in the complex process, which climate science needs to make part of its very foundations (even if that means starting over with climate theory). Direct atmospheric absorption of a substantial part of the incident solar radiation, as the true heater of the atmosphere, is one of those keys. The fundamental, gravity-caused, hydrostatic condition of the atmosphere, which provides for a predominant (i.e., stable) vertical temperature lapse rate structure -- over all other conditions, of "weather", details of atmospheric chemical composition, and even night and day -- is another such key. And the matching of scales of cause and effect, in any proposed theory, is a third.

  153. Harry,

    Very much enjoyed your well constructed and explained work on the comparison of Earth and Venus and "global warming". I tried to do a similar calculation using Mars but could not find the necessary data. Do you know if your analysis still holds using the other planets ? Surely this would be more than enough to convince the even the most evangelical AGW adherents.

  154. Good Afternoon, Iconoclast,

    I looked into comparing the other planets with Earth, but there were no such definitive results as here, with Venus and Earth. Previous comments on this page mention what I found for Mars and Saturn's moon Titan, and I leave it to you to look up those comments above. I may yet report on the other planets, if I find I have something definitive to say about them. You are certainly welcome to look up the data yourself and try your hand at them.

  155. I have read Alan Siddons analysis of NASA Planetary Fact Sheets.

    He demonstrates that if a planet has an atmosphere reaching at least 1 Bar of pressure the observed temperature at that pressure is between 30 and 50 % higher than the "Blackbody" temperature calculated using the methods of climate "science".

    For example Jupiter with 50.5 W/sq metre insolation, an atmosphere almost entirely Hydrogen and Helium has a "Blackbody" temperture calculated to be 110 K. At 1 Bar pressure the observed temperature is 165 K - 50% higher than the calculated value.

    This must be entirely puzzling to "climate scientists" as there is no possibility of a "Greenhouse Effect" on Jupiter.

    It is interesting to note that if one doesn't quarter the insolation as climate "science" routinely does the calculated values become much closer to the observed values for all of the outer planets - to within about 10 K.

    As you said we really do not know all that much about the manner in which energy is transferred in atmospheres.

    My personal opinion is that the only manner in which energy is "trapped" on Earth is by conversion to mass - any other "heating" anomilies observed are likely to be balanced by increasing radiative losses over time.

  156. Good Evening, Roscomac,

    Your comment is essentially the same one you made last month
    to my post "My Own Blackbody Error", and others can go there to
    see my original answer. As for your remark about "quartering the insolation", you might be interested in this comment I made last June on Steven Goddard's blog. I am not ready to say anything further at
    the moment.

  157. Roscomac,

    I just remembered, I posted that comment I referred to, at Steven Goddard's blog, on my own blog here.

  158. Good day Harry, I stumbled across your blog by accident actually, looking for some new data in my own attempts in settling the co2 controversy. I read your work if for no other reason than your fury at the current scientific community,(which i empathize with) and I too have found the simplest explanation the most likely, I studied geology and geography extensively as an undergrad, it was my true passion, but alas looking for shale wasnt my idea of exciting. My approach toward disproving co2 as anything but a passing fancy for the modern day scientist sellout, and grant guzzling ambulance chasers, geared more toward the geologic record the milankovitch cycles, and the obvious uniformity at which ice ages and interglacial periods occurred, this alone told me co2 wasnt the culprit, as it has been anything but uniform in earths history (geologic), as you said one need not turn to venus. Although your math and physics are well beyond me, I can how ever follow and am capable of checking the data and math (only had 2 years of physics). Not only did I find your approach intuitive and clever, but your process is sound, i can find no basis in which to dispute your findings. And make no mistake even though I agree with you, I always try to disprove new research. i never considered albedo either way, it is such ever changing inconstant variable, and although it can be a force to be reckoned with primarily when terminal moraine extends to Kansas it simply doesnt fit, and if the temperature readings at 1000 millibars on venus were recorded data, shouldnt albedo have already played its role in changing the temperature according to the co2 conspiracy? or am i missing something? Either way the amount of earth bound data in geologic record indicating temperatures consistant to todays with co2 levels of 1400 ppm, ice core samples showing co2 following, not preceding heat increase, the uniformity and regular intervals of cooling and warming trends with co2 levels well in access of todays under both conditions, should be sufficient to deter any further consideration of this nonsense, but i guess cause and effect arent taught anymore. And in case that isnt enough, in the earths life span the holocene epoch is the only period where co2 levels have been under 400 ppm. If what geologists say is true and we are always coming in an out of an ice age with only small periods of warming cycles shouldnt we be pumping as much co2 into the atmosphere as we can to prevent another ice age, if it were the cause. Anyway i appreciate the science, and ethics you have produced, a feeling of kindred spirits is rare these days, and shouldnt go without recognition. cheers glenn monson p.s. after reading some of the posts (replies) it seems there are some posting here that understand your math and physics but not the geography or geology and vice versa, but still feel the need to question, i can understand that, its the quality of the some of the questions i found disturbing, good luck i will be checking back for updates.

  159. Good Day, Glenn,

    Thank you. The climate debate is, it is clear now, part and parcel of the greater insanity of our time, going beyond the science. My contribution to the scientific debate has been to communicate the simplest, most definitive evidence possible, to try to jump over all the political garbage. At the moment, however, a scientific approach, by itself, does not appear to be making any headway against the general delusion. But there are increasing numbers of readers like you, who are receptive and accepting of new knowledge (and my Venus/Earth comparison constitutes new knowledge, even to the "experts", which is the most amazing aspect of it).

  160. Nazlfrag here. You have quite the commendable spirit, the way you continually try to open the eyes of those who confront you so blindly. I've had trouble enough explaining it to very smart people, I don't get it - your premise is so simple and direct. Anyway, I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and all the best for the new year. One day all this will be obvious.

  161. Good Afternoon, Nano,

    Thank you. I wish you, and all of my supporters, well in the coming year, too. (I'll leave it at that, for now.)

  162. Great article, I've been watching movies on the greenhouse effect and its devastation this week in my college class. The fact that something so easily disputable is presented as factual information is beyond me. Anyhow I'm glad I found another side to the argument, especially one as convincing as this.

  163. Good Afternoon, Reese,

    Thank you. I know the sheer magnitude of the general delusion--among "expert" scientists, not to mention the lay public--is daunting, but climate science must sooner or later accept the Venus/Earth data here as definitive against the existence of the greenhouse effect (defined as an increase in temperature with an increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere; most, characteristically, still have difficulty just focussing on that definition, though it is what is being foisted upon the unwary public).

  164. Good Morning, Doug,

    As I have said many times here, the Venus/Earth temperatures comparison provides the definitive facts for the necessary correction of climate science, and it also separates the competent from the incompetent among interested physical scientists, with any who question its results or my very basic physical interpretation of them being incompetent, in my view. So I have tried to keep theories out of the discussion here, to force everyone, eventually, to see that we are dealing here only with the definitive facts.

    I will only say, about your theory, that, while we seem to agree on some points (mainly, that the atmosphere is warmed by absorption of incident solar radiation, not from the surface; and the tropospheric temperature lapse rate--specifically, that defined in the Standard Atmosphere as -6.5K/km--rules over all other physical conditions in the atmospheres, providing the dominant, equilibrium state of the atmosphere), we disagree on at least one primary point (your paper says increasing carbon dioxide cools the atmosphere, while my comparison here says it neither warms nor cools, at all--see my CO2 Climate Sensitivity Vs. Reality, or For Climate, All the World's a Stage, for example).

    Basically, my aim here is not to provide a better climate theory; it is simply to show that climate scientists are incompetent, and should have done what I have done here, 20 years ago, and dropped the "greenhouse effect" then. With that aim in mind, and my continuing claim that my Venus/Earth comparison is the definitive evidence, not theory, I will note simply, without further comment, that your paper does not mention that definitive contribution, does not agree with all that contribution entails for a better climate theory, and thus is of no particular interest to me. I await a theory that acknowledges this definitive evidence and conforms entirely with what I claim any competent physicist must immediately deduce from it.

  165. In the second paragraph of my last comment, the correct phrase should be, "...rules over all other physical conditions in the atmosphere."

  166. I like your explanation, and expect that ultimately, your basic premise will be proven correct. Or rather, finally accepted as fact all along. Now, maybe you can figure out how variations in Helio magnetic properties are modulating earth's temperature profile. Either that, or/and variations in Suns light wavelength distribution over the spectrum sometimes project energy in wavelengths that better excite ocean water, and create El Nino. By this I mean if sometimes more of TSI is emitted in portions of the spectrum that better excite water. And/or perhaps Suns magnetic field better energizes the atmosphere (I don't know - is stronger, or contorts earths magnetosphere to allow more of some wavelengths to penetrate to the oceans. Just my ideas, and I'm not a researcher.

  167. Good Morning, LovePhysics,

    Thanks for your positive feedback. I started a lengthy response to you, about my proper position, (due to my discovery of a great design imposed upon our world, that motivated all of the ancient myths and religious obsessions of mankind), as a revolutionary influence in science--particularly, in all of the earth and life sciences, which all posit an "undirected evolution" of all that we now observe, and deny the very possibility of deliberate design--versus the hopes and expectations of ordinary people like you (and "experts" as well) for explanations of this or that particular phenomenon in one or another particular field of science, such as climate. But it was interrupted by a computer accident, and wiped out--arrgh, and sigh, and oh well--so I will save that lengthy explanation for a later blog post.

    As for the El Niño phenomenon, and multidecadal ocean temperature oscillations in general, and their strong correlation with the reconstructed global mean temperature record (along with an apparent, continuing .5°C/century warming since the depth of the "Little Ice Age" in the 17th century), the more I have learned, the more uncertain I am that the "global temperature" record is even scientifically sound; I have broached the idea that it might in fact represent an unintended and unrecognized proxy FOR the multidecadal ocean oscilations that "correlate" so well with it, rendering the correlation an as-yet unrecognized tautology. Certainly, the Venus/Earth comparison here confirms the Standard Atmosphere model for our troposphere, as the stable, i.e. unchanging, underlying equilibrium state, and further indicates that any changes occurring on the planetary surface, including those ocean oscillations, have precisely nothing to do with a global change in the atmospheric temperature, at any pressure level including the near-surface. The various "global mean temperature" reconstructions also don't agree with one another in recent decades, to within better than a few tenths of a degree (the satellite-measured global temperature "anomaly" is currently at .1°C, while the GISS/HADCRUT value is about .5°C). Added to that is the finding that the United States temperature record is being subjected to fraudulent adjustments, to enable alarmist claims of warming due to increasing atmospheric CO2. So the verifiable science is still up in the air almost entirely, in my current view.

  168. Martin,

    I received your comment, but it simply ignores the fact brought forward in the Venus/Earth comparison here, and instead offers incompetent theoretical arguments against it. The question is not the one you began your comment with--why should one compare the temperatures at 1 bar pressure, but at different altitudes in the two atmospheres--but, having compared the temperatures at 1 bar (and indeed, at points of equal pressure over the full range of Earth tropospheric pressures), how does a responsible scientist explain the factual observation, that the ratio of temperatures is just that expected from the ratio of the solar distances of the two planets, and nothing else (no "greenhouse effect", no difference-in-planetary-albedos effect, no difference-in-planetary-surfaces effect)? The answer is that the observational facts cannot be explained within the consensus theory. Further, the data used in my comparison is nearly 22 years old now, and my observations of the Venus/Earth temperature ratio should have been made by competent scientists long ago, and the several false beliefs that go into the consensus theory should have been corrected long ago. In your theorizing comment, even after seeing my temperatures comparison, you ignore the factual result I have presented--a result which is amazingly precise in its indication (to any competent physical scientist) of the true physical situation pertaining to atmospheric warming by the Sun, so you are amazingly dense not to honestly confront that result, probably because you are deluded by the thought that all those climate science "experts" cannot be wrong. But they are wrong, indeed they are incompetent and their climate science is a failure, and it will remain a failure unless and until the observed fact of the Venus/Earth temperature ratio is properly confronted and everyone accepts that the atmospheres are fundamentally warmed--globally--by direct absorption of incident solar radiation, and not at all from the separately warmed surface.

  169. Martin,

    I received your second comment, but I will not reward you for ignoring the plain facts by allowing you to whine about how reasonable you are in questioning the Venus/Earth comparison presented on this page.

    However, since I know that even the "climate science experts" are incompetent, I will make the Venus/Earth comparison very simple for you. But you can't tell any "experts", because I want to leave the analysis just as I originally did it here, back in November 2010, because any real expert would have, like me, focused upon the actual bottom-line of the comparison--the fact of the presented Venus/Earth temperature ratio, and the physical explanation of that ratio I have given, over and over for 2 and 1/2 years--rather than gotten sidetracked by how I came to do the comparison. And I want that to become clear to everyone, eventually--that any competent physicist should have seen that the actual Venus/Earth temperature ratio, over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, is explained (and precisely so, above and below the Venus cloud layer) by the ratio of the two planets' solar distances, and nothing else. That is the fact--I repeat, the FACT--you are ignoring.

    Here is the simple way to look at the comparison. Make a table of temperature vs. pressure for the Standard Atmosphere troposphere, and the same for the Venus atmosphere as measured on October 5, 1991(over the same range, of Earth tropospheric pressures). You don't have to justify doing that, it is just something you can easily do (it is the first table in my article above), and it is what any competent student--much less experienced scientist--interested in comparing the two atmospheres would do as a matter of routine.

    But, having done that little chore, a good physicist would ask if there is a simple explanation for the fact that the Venus/Earth temperature ratio is in fact basically a constant (1.176), and that particular constant. A merely competent student in the physical sciences would pretty quickly discover that the temperature ratio is just that expected from the different solar distances alone, from the Stefan-Boltzmann formula. (How using that formula can be justified is what most critics of my analysis homed in on, but they did so incompetently. And it was not until a year and a half later that I myself added an update that properly explained it, with the physically pertinent simple equations.)

    Now here is where the really simple part comes in, that was not in my original presentation, but should have been brought out very quickly by any real "expert". Imagine if Venus were simply moved outwards to the same distance from the Sun as Earth (so it was still heated by the same portion of the incident solar radiation, but that portion would be reduced, as the total incident solar radiation would be, by the greater solar distance), how would the Venus temperatures, at the various pressures in your table, change? The answer is that they would be reduced, by the factor 1/1.176--and that is what is shown in the fourth column of my table above. Graphing the resulting T vs. P curves of Earth and the newly-moved Venus, one gets the graph I presented in the post here.

    Now, don't tell anyone what I have just told you, about simply "moving" Venus to the same solar distance as Earth. I want to see how long it will take a competent scientist to come to the realization on their own, instead of incompetently saying, 1.176 is "just a coincidence", or "you failed to account for the difference in albedo". Of course, you are free to inform President Obama of how easy it is to disprove the CO2 "greenhouse effect", which he and the EPA are using for the most venal of political purposes (to wit, the exercise of ruinous and fraudulent power over the lives of millions of innocent and unwary people).

  170. Hello Harry,
    You say that both the Earth and Venus are warmed by the same mechanism, incident solar IR. What becomes of visible and UV from the solar radiation spectrum then?

    Thanks. Erick

  171. Good Afternoon, Erick,

    If you do some internet (or elsewhere) research on what causes the stratosphere, you will find as I did that as much as 95% of the UV solar radiation is stopped in the stratosphere, where it smashes apart ozone molecules (and probably other heavier air molecules, like the nitrogen oxides). I'm sure you already know that visible radiation is merely scattered, not absorbed, by gaseous air molecules, with the scattering greater towards the blue end of the visible spectrum (which is why the sky is blue, and why the Sun appears more red when near the horizon--because its rays are passing through a longer column of air to your eyes, and the blue end is scattered out preferentially). So my general understanding, so far, is that UV breaks down molecules when it is absorbed (in the stratosphere), visible light is scattered (or absorbed when it strikes a solid or liquid body, in the atmosphere or at the planetary surface), and IR heats the air molecule that absorbs it. We know visible light doesn't heat the atmosphere (even though it heats the surface when it is absorbed there), because the Earth and Venus reflect greatly different fractions of the visible light, yet that difference does not affect the temperature-vs-pressure curves, as shown in the graph in the post above--only solar distance affects them.

    This is probably a good time to say again that I don't pretend to have all the answers, and I don't present myself as an expert (in all the detailed observations) in atmospheric or climate science (although I did do extensive data analysis, leading to independent research and my own physical interpretations, on remote aerosols in the atmosphere, back in the early 1990's--see the journal "Atmospheric Environment", Vol. 30-1, Jan. 1996, for my published papers on that subject). I am not writing here as a climate expert (they are all incompetent, as I have found out for myself--I am still waiting to see some signs of competence on their part, or in those who follow them), but as a competent physicist informing anyone who will listen, of the definitive evidence against the current consensus theories in climate science.

    1. Some interesting conversation going on at TallBlokes site here.
      Hope you are doing well.

  172. I guess what really matters is your definition of "greenhouse effect."
    Obviously, Venus's black-body temperature should be ~340 Kelvins.
    But remember that its atmosphere is opaque, as is ours slightly.
    Earth's surface is about 10% brighter than one would expect, it emits 390 watts/meter^2.
    Venus's surface is about 700% brighter than one would expect, but it is mostly obscured by clouds, which themselves re-emit the radiation.
    This means that Venus must be A: a brown dwarf
    or B: heated by the sun in the visible spectrum, then left to emit it back in the IR spectrum.
    This is the same effect we observe on earth and call the greenhouse effect.
    Basically, neither has an unusual greenhouse effect, but they do both have the effect to begin with.
    This is the same way climate scientists explain the heat of Venus. It doesn't have that much more greenhouse effect per atmosphere level, just much more atmosphere to begin with.

  173. Pds3,

    I usually don't allow comments that ignore the clear fact of the Venus/Earth temperature ratio, and its clear meaning, but instead just argue their favorite theory. But I think it's proper to now and again show others just how insane the situation is, when definitive facts are ignored so cavalierly--as climate science has done for over 20 years (and for nearly 3 years, even after my little analysis here, which in fact is definitive against the greenhouse effect, of increasing global mean temperature with increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide--the effect promulgated to the public as a doomsday effect, and the ONLY one that has any meaning in the climate science debates. So all that you have said is, first of all, irrelevant. But it is also false theory, and you are talking nonsense.

    I also received your second comment, but it is just more of the same false theory pretending to be physically factual. I suggest you read

    Runaway Global Warming Is Scientific Hysteria,

    to see what I think of your touted "390 W/m^2"; and

    The True Situation In Climate Science.

    I will accept no more comments from you arguing any element of consensus theory (either a "greenhouse effect" or the consensus radiative transfer theory), unless you can show, quantitatively and within your theory, why the Venus/Earth temperature ratio, at points of equal pressure in the two atmospheres over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, is just that expected from their different distances from the Sun, AND NOTHING ELSE--no difference due to the vastly different CO2 levels, no difference due to the vastly different planetary albedos, no difference due to the quite different planetary surfaces. I deal in the definitive facts here, and insist climate scientists and their followers must do the same (and I know you have no intention of doing that, because bad theory is all you--and they--have). It is long past time that you all started trying to learn the newly discovered truth, instead of avoiding it so determinedly, so condescendingly; as it is, you know nothing of worth in climate science.

  174. If planetary temperature is determined (only) by distance from the sun, then why is Venus hotter than Mercury? Does your hypothesis/ rational/ calculations work to predict the temperature of Mars, and perhaps the other planets?

  175. Good Morning, Astrobiology,

    The proper statement, of fact not theory, is that the Venus/Earth temperature ratio, at points of equal pressure in the two atmospheres and over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, is determined only by the ratio of their distances from the Sun (in accordance with the fundamental physics that relates mean absorbed radiation intensity with attained temperature, at equilibrium), and nothing else. That fact has implications for the temperatures in the other planetary atmospheres, but of course it should not be expected to predict their temperatures; it is not a theory of planetary warming, it is a fact relating the Earth troposphere with an equivalent (in pressures) portion of the Venus atmosphere.

    The easy, even lazy, answer to your first question is that when you say, "Venus is hotter than Mercury", you really mean the surface of Venus is hotter than the surface of Mercury, despite being much farther from the Sun--that ignores the atmosphere, of course (and that little detail of comparing at points of equal pressure in the atmosphere, which my comparison emphasized), and any hack will tell you the surface of Venus is hotter because it lies at the bottom of a deep, heavy, heat-retaining ocean of air, while the surface of Mercury is essentially bare to the near-absolute cold of space. (All of this is so obvious, I suspect your question is merely disengenuous--suspect so strongly, that I say so here for any interested reader to see. David Appell, a charlatan who pretends to be a competent PhD physicist, recently tried to comment on this site with the same incompetent point, that the Venus/Earth comparison does not work for the other planets. I wouldn't be at all surprised if your comment was an attempt to get by my denial of any further comments from him, as an unthinking, determinedly dismissive, disruptive influence. If you follow his lead, you won't get anywhere worthwhile--here, at least.)

    I have always emphasized that I do not have a theory, only that definitive fact, which disproves the greenhouse effect of increasing atmospheric temperature (at any given pressure) with increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide (for Venus's atmosphere has over 2400 times the level of carbon dioxide as does Earth's atmosphere, yet it makes no difference in the temperature--and note, if there WERE such an effect, it would be ADDITIVE to Venus's temperatures, not multiplicative as the constant Venus/Earth temperature ratio implies).

    To explain the temperatures in the atmospheres of the other planets would require a general theory of atmospheric warming. I do not feel the slightest need to bail out climate and atmospheric scientists from their responsibility to produce such a theory--which MUST EXPLAIN the Venus/Earth result quantitatively and precisely, note. I have done some comparisons of the troposphere of Earth with the equivalent parts of the other planetary atmospheres, as I have said in earlier responses to earlier comments here, but nothing as definitive as the Venus/Earth result emerged from that preliminary work, and I am interested only in communicating definitive results--facts, not theory.

    All of the earth and life sciences are now working with fundamentally false theories, to a lesser or greater extent. That is the larger point, that has emerged from my own research, with my discovery of a great world-encompassing design at the very beginning of mankind's intellectual history, and motivating every aspect of its development. Random cosmic events and undirected geological and biological processes are not the truth about Earth's origin and development. The Earth and solar system were subjected to deliberate wholesale reformation, to impose an overall design--and modern science has, thus, gone wrong.

  176. A little traction perhaps?

  177. Good Evening, ewodarz,

    I don't think so. I went to Dr. Spencer's post (I didn't paste that URL into my browser, so I can't be sure I found the right comment), and found a comment by one "mellryn" which made my point about the Venus/Earth temperature ratio(without naming me or the article here). But that comment was answered by some "expert"--calling himself "BALL4"--who simply ignored the point of the comment, by "agreeing" that one would expect the Venus/Earth temperature ratio (at a given pressure) to be due to the solar distances AND THE DIFFERENCE IN ALBEDOS -- so he didn't even read mellryn's comment correctly, that ONLY the solar distances have an effect. And that's been par for the course, among all of those who believe in the consensus "greenhouse effect"--they are just incompetent, because their heads are full of their pretend knowledge. I tried to answer him, but the page merely refreshed when I tried to submit the comment, without accepting it, so I let it go.

  178. Earth's atmosphere is only .4 millibars of CO2. What is the temperature in Venus atmosphere where the pressure is .4 millibars not 1000 millibars?

  179. Good Morning, Morgan,

    Your question is very confused. The surface pressure on Earth is approximately 1,000 mb; do you think each gaseous element in the air is under a different pressure, according to its relative abundance? The abundance of CO2 is 400 ppm by volume, or .0004 of the atmosphere, but it is subject to the same pressure, at every level, as any other constituent in the air. (The pressure increases with depth in the atmosphere, fundamentally according to the hydrostatic condition, that is, according to the weight of the air above any given level, and pressing down on that level.)

    That being said, then, I see no real point to your question. The temperature-vs-pressure curves of Earth and Venus can only be compared over the range of Earth tropospheric pressures, between 1,000 and 200 millibars. Above the troposphere the physics of atmospheric warming is different, as I have discussed before, as best shown by the inversion of the temperature gradient from the negative one in the troposphere to the positive one of the stratosphere.

  180. Hi Harry.
    Your Venus/Earth comparison is really neat!
    I’m a retired nuts and bolts engineer living in the UK. I picked up my grandson from school last week and he said he’d been learning about how CO2 was warming the planet – I said to him that’s not true! Mars has an atmosphere consisting of almost 96% CO2 and that planet is really cold. I also calculated for him that Mars was also cooler because it was 141.4m miles from the Sum and Earth was 93m: square root of the distance ratios and my calculation of expected temperature on Mars = 288K * root (93/141.5) about 233K. He seemed to grasp CO2 doesn’t warm things at all on Mars given NASA (and others) state the average temperature of Mars is about 219K.
    He then said he’d also learnt Venus is the hottest planet in the solar system because of CO2 “runaway greenhouse effect”. I was struggling to counter this until I found your site. Thanks alot!
    It should be easy to compare the three planets just by adjusting for adiabatic temperature lapse and distance from the Sun. Mars ought to have a temperature analogous with that, say, of the base camp Everest (about 13,500ft). Apparently, it’s much colder and I can’t see why.
    There has to be a simple way to show all three planets have identical square root solar distance temperatures at similar atmosphere pressures. What am I missing?
    Peter Norman

  181. Good Evening, Peter,

    The main thing is you must compare temperatures at points of equal pressure in the two atmospheres (as I did here between Venus and Earth), and not at the planetary surfaces as you indicated you did. Also, the maximum atmospheric pressure on Mars, on the planetary surface, is only about 6.5 mb; this pressure exists only far up in the stratosphere of Earth, in the region where the vertical temperature gradient is the reverse of that in the troposphere (so the physics of atmospheric warming is different there). The pressure in Earth's atmosphere is still up around 200 mb, roughly, even at the top of the troposphere (above that is first the tropopause and then the stratosphere). So one can't compare Earth and Mars as I did Earth and Venus, because Mars does not have enough atmosphere to have pressures in the range of Earth tropospheric pressures. The vertical temperature profiles of Mars which I found (in a quick search on the internet, two or three years ago now) are not smooth and precise, and different ones don't agree at all precisely; the surface temperature varies wildly there also (between roughly 160K and 260K). My opinion then (and this is just my educated guess, I don't claim to have all the answers, or a complete theory of atmospheric warming) is that Mars simply does not have enough atmosphere to be in or sufficiently close to equilibrium, as Earth and Venus are.

  182. Hi Harry.
    Thanks for the reply. Yes, after a bit more thought, I agree. It’s really difficult to predict temperatures on Mars given its rarefied atmosphere. Everybody talks about the atmosphere of Mars as if it has some equivalence to what we know on Earth. I’d overlooked the size of Mars (53%) compared to Earth and the extremely rare atmosphere it actually supports. By comparison, even at the top of Everest the atmospheric pressure is 50 times denser than the surface of Mars. We’d definitely need pressurised suits with air conditioning and oxygen to wander around Mars. (We humans have no real appreciation of how hostile everything is in the Universe outside our Cinderella world!)
    I’ll now have a look at the data the Mars rover is collecting to see how temperatures may compare with the upper atmosphere levels of Earth.
    Thanks again,
    Peter Norman

  183. Peter,

    The altitude at which Earth's Standard Atmosphere (SA) is 6.5 mb in pressure is around 34.4 km, and the temperature there is approximately 235K. But again, that is in the stratosphere, where the temperature increases with altitude (at the top of the troposphere, at 11km in the SA, the temperature is only about 217K). At first glance, 235K puts you in the range of actual Mars surface temperatures, but on Earth that temperature at that pressure is due to different physics (that which pertains in the stratosphere, not the troposphere). That leaves the possibility that the Mars atmosphere at and near the surface (the bottom 15 km, say) is analogous, in its vertical temperature profile, to the stratosphere of Earth (it certainly is not so, above 15 km in Mars's atmosphere, where, according to the profiles I have on hand, the temperature gradient is mainly negative, like the Earth troposphere--but those profiles DO suggest a stratospheric temperature profile below 15 km, although they do not extend below about 9 km, and on down to the surface, at all). If that were true, then the greater solar distance of Mars would reduce that Earthly 235K down to 190K--still in the range of Mars surface temperatures (~160-260K), but not in the middle of it, nor the 219K you mentioned. So the glass is half full, or half empty, as it were--one can either be happy to get an answer in the right ballpark, with the hypothesis of a stratospheric near-surface profile on Mars, or disappointed not to get precise agreement with the mean temperature. As a scientist, I counsel the latter, with the heartening caveat that it just means we have more to learn about it.

  184. Sorry for going completely of tangent. My science skills are zero though have enjoyed reading the article and comments,

    I believe the mantle of Venus has not hardened,what heat escapes from the interior of the planet. It is covered with volcanoes and Lava flows, are these active - do we know?


    can an experiment be done on earth with high co2 levels in a container that can withstand high pressure to somehow recreate Venus atmos- a submersible, glass front up on end facing the sun. If co2 really did cause high temps at certain pressures I would have though that it would be used for thermal insulation or a heat source of some kind.

  185. Good Morning, William,

    I expect you can find out more about the surface of Venus by searching on the internet yourself, but I will tell you the little I know. The Russians got dim pictures of the surface when they sent a landing probe there, and it was solid and, as I recall, with small rocks visible. I also have seen radar images of the surface which, while they looked like molten gold (very beautiful), in fact showed a rolling-hill terrain, so quite solid. This would be expected, with the surface temperature only about 900 °F (463°C, about). I also have an image of Venus from space that shows a large scar across the surface--across most of the apparent diameter of the planet, and quite like a similar, well-known gigantic scar on Mars--which wouldn't be there if the surface were molten. It rather looks like both Mars and Venus were prominently, deliberately, slashed to show they were now dead, and implying they once supported life. (Remember, you heard it here first.)

    I won't address your CO2 experiment idea, because with the Venus/Earth temperature comparison it is unnecessary. When I say that comparison is definitive against the "global warming greenhouse effect" (as I have said continually for the last 3 years), I mean it--there is no need for further experiment, the consensus greenhouse effect is definitively disproven by it. I am amused that people still want to "simulate" the Venus atmosphere, when we have the data from the actual Venus atmosphere, and an "experiment" (comparison with Earth's Standard Atmosphere) involving two detailed, real atmospheres. It's a bit like someone saying, "yes, that's great steak, but try these soy cube substitutes." Definitive evidence from the real thing is not good enough for you?

  186. "I won't address your CO2 experiment idea, because with the Venus/Earth temperature comparison it is unnecessary"

    Yes - point taken!!



    many thanks for your reply.


  187. I received the following comment by e-mail, from one John Johnson:

    Hello Harry Huffman,

    This is some very interesting data. You have found a quite amazing "coincidence" that should not be easily dismissed. I spent the last day reading the rebuttals to your finding and did find ALL of them incompetent, as you have said. Those responding seem incapable of understanding that you are simply presenting them a new piece of data to be explained by their models and it seems extremely unlikely (to a non-expert in this field, me) that this datapoint can be consistent with a CO2 induced greenhouse effect.

    I expected to find at least one response providing predictions of what relationship should exist between venus and earth atmosphere temp/pressure profiles according to current theory, but did not.

    It may be helpful to others who come across this site if you gathered all the rebuttals existing and put them in one place so that new readers can more easily grasp the scope of who has attempted to respond to your new data point, along with the incompetence of those who have responded.

    The situation reminds me of the "redshift controversy" begun by Halton Arp. In that case there are a number of "coincidences" that result in apparently connected objects with vastly different redshift values which would seem to falsify the theory that redshift is only due to doppler effect. The big bang theory relies on these being coincidences. For example see:

    this wikipedia page

    It seems that your datapoint will be treated the same until someone has a model that can explain it along with many other observations. I suspect there are competent researchers who have read your work and are attempting to do this silently.

    Finally, I have attempted to validate the data on my own and got similar but not exactly the same results. I had a few questions:

    1) How exactly did you extract the data values from the source charts (to the nearest 0.1 does not seem possible to me), and are you aware if a source data table for the venus data is available anywhere?

    2) The sources I have seen for US standard atmosphere do not agree with your temperature value at 200 mbar. The lowest temp in the troposphere in this model appears to be 216.65 K by definition. See the graphs on this page for example.

  188. Good Evening, John,

    I will divide my response into 2 comments.

    I have been waiting for over 3 years to see if someone would ask me these questions. Not that they are critical ones, but they are proper (though elementary), unlike the many incompetent responses you have referred to.

    The main point to understand is that I presented this analysis as a very quick and basic one--a "student level" analysis, as I called it--which I claim should have been done more than 20 years ago by competent scientists, or even by competent undergraduate students of climate science. I have said many times that it divides the incompetent from the competent, and so I have not wanted to change it, to "improve" it, lest the incompetents would use such changes to argue that it was not good enough in its original form; that would be a lie, and would detract from the simple science and simple physics I wanted to shine forth. But since someone has finally asked these scientifically pertinent, though small, questions, I will answer them:

    First, your suggestion, that I should assemble the incompetent responses, runs counter to my determination not to change the above post, or blur its focus with extended arguments from others. It is focused upon informing, both the public and the scientific community, of definitive evidence against the consensus climate science, not upon engaging in debate with those committed to denying any such definitive correction exists.

    Most simply put, I wrote this post for the public, but with the assumptions, method and interpretation of what I consider a competent scientist (myself), that should be easily and quickly grasped by any other competent physical scientist. Adding what you suggested would weaken that sharp focus, especially in the very tattered, in fact insane, intellectual atmosphere surrounding the climate "debate".

    As to your specific questions: 1) As noted in the post, I compared the Standard Atmosphere-defined tropospheric profile of Earth with the measured temperature and pressure profiles of Venus. The former is mathematically defined as

    ln (P/Po) = 5.2995 ln (T/To) (in the 1976 Std. Atm. model)

    with Po = 1013.25 mb and To = 288.15K,

    so one can obviously calculate P vs T to the nearest 0.1 (mb or K), or indeed to any accuracy one chooses. I chose to use P values between 1,000 and 200 mb in 200 mb steps, and calculated the corresponding T values, originally to more places than just the nearest 0.1K. I chose to truncate them, and the corresponding Venus T values, to the nearest 0.1K in presenting the final comparison, because that is all that is needed to present the comparison accurately, considering that the Venus values are in fact not accurate to within 0.1K--as I noted by giving the uncertainty in those values (+/- 1.4K). Frankly, I would expect any competent physical scientist to be properly trained on how best to present data, to be fair to both the scientifically trained reader and to the data itself. And as to question 2), my choice of 200 mb was indeed a fudge, in any final analysis, as the troposphere mathematically ends with 226.3 mb, approximately, not 200. But I'm not interested in being "perfect" here, just in dividing the competent from the incompetent, so I decided to present the 200 mb case as if it were in the troposphere (i.e., subject to the above defining relation), rather than present the awkward value of 226 mb at the tail end of my table (and graph). And that last point is in fact of secondary importance; the primary point is just how precisely the Venus/Earth temperature ratio agrees with that predicted from the solar distances alone, for the 1,000 to 700 mb range. The 200 (or 226) mb point merely indicates that the Venus profile closes the modest 5K gap with the Earth profile above the Venus cloud layer, and so tells us more about the effect of that cloud layer, which I claim is responsible for that 5K gap.

  189. Second part,

    (First, a correction of a typographical error in the above: I chose pressure values between 1,000 and 200 mb, in 100 mb steps.)

    Finally, I should correct you on your casual use of the term "coincidence", which is scientifically unsupportable and misleading. The precision with which the Venus/Earth temperature ratio agrees with what would be predicted from the solar distances alone (particularly above and below the Venus cloud layer) should tell anyone that it is very unlikely to be due to mere coincidence. Two further considerations should be enough to convince any reasonable person that it indeed cannot be mere coincidence: 1) Venus and Earth differ greatly in several major ways that would ordinarily be assumed (and in fact are assumed, by most) to have an effect upon the temperature, but which do not, at least in the case of Venus and Earth, according to my comparison. I have listed these many times, over and over; they vary tremendously in the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide, in the cloud cover and albedo, and in the nature of the planetary surface (they differ also in the total amount, or mass,of the atmosphere, but my comparison negates that by comparing temperatures at points of equal pressure in the two atmospheres). And 2), I knew before I performed the comparison that there was a simple physical explanation for the temperature profile of the troposphere, and that was the independence of the temperature lapse rate structure from any consideration of absorption or emission of radiation within the atmoshere, which the consensus theory insists upon focusing upon. Indeed, I performed the Venus/Earth comparison because I was frustrated that the lapse rate explanation, of applying simple energy conservation between adjacent levels in a hydrostatic atmosphere (i.e., an atmosphere for which the pressure at any given level is due to the weight of the atmosphere above that level) was not being understood as itself definitive against the consensus "greenhouse effect". As I have said, in a much earlier comment here, my comparsion only made it an obvious fact that there was no such effect. In short, then, what keeps the Venus/Earth temperature ratio from being a coincidence is that it is counter to what consensus theory would predict, by taking account of all those huge differences I've mentioned, and that it is already expected on the basis of the well-known physics of the lapse rate, which motivates the definition of the Standard Atmosphere. As I have also said over and over, my comparison basically confirms the Standard Atmosphere model (which takes no heed of a "greenhouse effect" at all).

    So don't call it a coincidence, with well-known, simple physics behind it, and no way of explaining it within the (incompetent) consensus theory and its many variables of merely assumed importance.

  190. You have an interesting idea.
    I have long pondered why proponents of the GHG idea claim that its outgoing IR radiation which is absorbed by CO2, when incoming IR in the 1,4 and 1.9 micron range is much more powerful, and should already have saturated CO2.

    There are also problems with the physics, as IR from Earth, absorbed and then back-radiated to the ground cannot possibly heat the ground. A heat source cannot warm further a sink at the same temperature as the heat source; thermodynamics forbids this.

  191. Good Evening, Robert,

    All of your arguments against the consensus theory were made long before I performed the Venus/Earth comparison given above, and they all had no effect at all upon the belief in that consensus--they were rejected, dismissed. I did the Venus/Earth comparison BECAUSE of that fact. So you are behind the times bringing them up here. The Venus/Earth comparison here demonstrates, as a fact--not theory--that there is no "greenhouse effect" at all, as theorized by the consensus. That is the fact, and all theory--all theoretical arguments--must bow to it. It is NOT just an "interesting idea"; to any competent physicist, it is a definitive fact, negating the consensus utterly.

  192. John Johnson has pointed out there is another typo in my response to him above. The Standard Atmosphere equation for the pressure as a function of temperature in the troposphere region is

    ln (P/Po) = 5.2559 ln (T/To).

    John, I received your further comments, but they do not change my initial response to you. The Venus/Earth comparison here is a simple comparison of Earth's Standard Atmosphere troposphere with the equivalent pressure range of MEASURED Venus atmospheric temperatures. There is no need to hypothesize or assume a model of any kind for the Venus atmosphere, and to do so only complicates the simple comparison. As I have done it, the comparison confirms Earth's Standard Atmosphere model, using the Venus observed data, very nicely; your way only introduces further assumptions and more variables, and thus improperly weakens appreciation for the measured Venus data as confirming of the Earth Standard Atmosphere.

  193. Hello Mr. Huffman.
    Stumbled upon this blog page routing around over unifying planetary atmospheric temperatures to pressure.
    A most interesting subject.

    It matters not how well you blow the deniers of no global warming down with real numbers. They pop up a minute later with the same old misconceptions and assumptions to argue it all over again.

    Sure adding gas mass to the Earth will warm us up but our efforts barely register against previous life turning water and CO2 into rock.

    Considered extending this page to include other planets?

  194. Good Afternoon, Andyj,

    If you read my other posts, on the subject of climate science, you will find I have been aware of the points you raise, even before I performed the Venus/Earth comparison here, 3 and 1/2 years ago--the consensus scientists' dismissal of any criticism of their work on theoretical grounds, and their disdain even for such hard facts as the then-10-year long period of no recent global warming, is in fact what drew me to perform the Venus/Earth comparison, of the measured temperature and pressure profiles of Venus against the Standard Atmosphere of the Earth, with such precise and definitive results against the consensus theory.

    With regard to "previous life turning water and CO2 into rock", I will merely say here that this blog is meant to inform the world of my discovery, and thorough verification, of a deliberate re-formation of the surface of the Earth, and the entire solar system, by those known now only as the "gods" of ancient worldwide myth--so they, I know, were responsible for much of the rock that current science thinks the result of known geological processes, and not over millions of years but thousands at most (the Earth re-formation was done between roughly 20,000 and 10,000 years ago).

    As for comparing the Standard Atmosphere with other planetary atmospheres--which I encourage others to do, anyway, whether I do it or not--as I have mentioned in earlier comments here, the results are not as precisely in tune with the Standard Atmosphere and the solar distances involved as is Venus, and so they are not as definitive as Venus/Earth is--I don't want to give anything away on that score to consensus scientists, unless or until they properly confront and accept the Venus/Earth results as I have given them.

  195. Harry, I believe your proof is correct, but I would like to direct you to another issue on which I think the consensus is also completely wrong. That is the 100k year cycle of ice ages derived from ice core records. It is my belief that the ice core records have been misinterpreted as continuous records of past climate when they are not.

    From my calculations they reveal a 327,000 year cycle during which time ice grows and melts leaving behind about 100k years worth of ice. As we are currently in the middle of this cycle, the most recent peak would have been one quarter of the cycle, or about 82,000 years ago, and the earth has been cooling ever since. The temperature swing of this cycle is about +9C to -9C, leaving what are now called "interglacial" tips at about +3C.

    So what makes the ice core temperature record looked so jagged and weird is that it is made up of three factors: 1) Milankovitch cycles 2) A 327k year cycle swinging a full 18 degrees C, and 3) the periods of melt and grow leaving behind only a third of the full circle. The sections of the ice core record that depict the earth shooting out of ice ages are currently explained by mythical triggers, tipping points and feedback loops as relates to the "greenhouse effect", which we know isn't real. You can find my blog at:

    Enjoyed reading your blog, and I would appreciate your thoughts.

  196. Good Afternoon, Iceman,

    On the basis of the world-encompassing (in fact, solar system-encompassing) design I found behind all of the exoteric "ancient mysteries" of man on Earth, I give no credence at all to any of the current consensus theories of any of the earth and life sciences, founded as they are on uniformitarianism (i.e., supposing that the only forces that have acted on our world in the past are just those observable today) and long-unquestioned scientific dogma (primarily in the theory of undirected evolution, for the past century and a half, and in plate tectonics for about the past 40 years). I am convinced there is not only no greenhouse effect, but much wider afield, there are no such changes in the Earth's orbit or axial tilt as imagined in the Milankovitch theory, and there have been no global "ice ages" in the past. (And most fundamentally, there has been no substantial undirected evolution, and no substantial undirected continental movements due to "plate tectonics".) The global mean surface temperature has been quite stable for the last 10,000 years, and that is just the length of time since the great design was finished. So I don't deal in theories, and I have merely entered the climate science mess because I was easily able to get to the bottom of the mass incompetence involved in it, and felt that should be forcefully pointed out to everyone.