The Instigator
Ron-Paul
Con (against)
Winning
12 Points
The Contender
Numidious
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points

Mankind Is the Main Cause of Global Warming

Do you like this debate?NoYes+13
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Ron-Paul
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/30/2012 Category: Science
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 10,418 times Debate No: 24911
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (38)
Votes (4)

 

Ron-Paul

Con

You have asked to debate this first, so I am sending you the challenge directly. My last opponent on this subject forfeited, so I want to try this resolution again.

Full Resolution:

Mankind is the main cause of global warming. I, as con, will argue that it is of natural causes, not mankind.

We will NOT be arguing if global warming exists or not, it will be assumed that it does. Only if global warming has an anthropogenic cause.

Definitions:

Mankind: "The human race; human beings collectively without reference to sex; humankind."[1]

Main: "Chief in size, extent, or importance; principal; leading;"[2]

Cause: "A person or thing that acts, happens, or exists in such a way that some specific thing happens as a result; the producer of an effect."[3]

Global Warming: "Global warming is the rise in the average temperature of Earth's atmosphere and oceans since the late 19th century, and its projected continuation."[4]

Rules:

1. The first round is for acceptance.
2. A forfeit or concession is not allowed.
3. No semantics, lawyering, or trolling.
4. Debate resolution, definitions, rules, and structure can not be negotiated or changed in the middle of the debate.
5. In the case of the breaking of any of these rules, all seven points in voting should be given to the other person.

Debate Structure:

Round 1: Acceptance.
Round 2: Presenting all arguments (no rebuttals by pro).
Round 3: Refutation of opponent's arguments (no new arguments).
Round 4: Defending you original arguments and conclusion (no new arguments).

Sources:

[1]:http://dictionary.reference.com...
[2]:http://dictionary.reference.com...
[3]:http://dictionary.reference.com...
[4]:http://en.wikipedia.org...
Numidious

Pro

I am happy to accept this challenge and look forward to a very interesting debate - as I like to say, either you'll learn something or I will!

I accept all of the opposition's definitions and look forward to a very interesting debate. Classic internet social democracy vs. libertarianism clash, always interesting. I shall contend in this debate that the human race most certainly IS the main cause of global warming, and that that is proven beyond reasonable doubt by scientific evidence.

Let the debate begin!
Debate Round No. 1
Ron-Paul

Con

I would like to thank Numidious for accepting this debate.

I. The Universe and Global Warming

The current state of the Galaxy and our Sun is affecting our temperatures.

I.i. The Rest of the Solar System

The Sun clearly is in a warmer phase, because all of the other planets have increasing temperatures as well.

"In 2005 data from NASA's Mars Global Surveyor and Odyssey missions revealed that the carbon dioxide "ice caps" near Mars's south pole had been diminishing for three summers in a row.

Habibullo Abdussamatov, head of space research at St. Petersburg's Pulkovo Astronomical Observatory in Russia, says the Mars data is evidence that the current global warming on Earth is being caused by changes in the sun."[1]

"'Global warming on Neptune's moon Triton as well as Jupiter and Pluto, and now Mars has some [scientists] scratching their heads over what could possibly be in common with the warming of all these planets … Could there be something in common with all the planets in our solar system that might cause them all to warm at the same time?'"[2]

Two things can be drawn from this. One, that if other planets are warming, that it is only natural for the Earth to be warming as well. And second, that even if all these planets did have natural causes, then that is a sign of Earth's natural climatic change, instead of man-made.

I.ii. The Position of the Milky Way Galaxy

Every approximately 135 million years, Earth enters a more populated area of the Milky Way, and as a result, more cosmic rays hit the Earth, which causes cooling. Currently, we are in a less populated area of the Milky Way, which means that less of these cosmic rays will be hitting the Earth, which means less cloud formation, and of course, warming.

[3] for the source on this hypothesis. The sun can also cause this through evaporation.

II. Earthly Causes

There are many internal causes of Global Warming as well.

II.i. Ocean Current Anomalies

Ocean temperature anomalies seem to be rising-along with the temperature.

"...one can model past temperatures as a linear trend (that started well before CO2 was added in any substantial quantity) and periodic bumps... ...temperatures over the last 100+ years look a lot like a linear trend plus ocean cycle-driven bumps"[4]

What is causing all the bumps?:


[4]

As shown in the graph, the PDO, or ocean currents, temperature has affected the average Earth's temperature.

II.ii. Clouds: A Continuation of Point I.ii.

I mentioned about the position of the Milky Way Galaxy and the Sun in regards to these "cosmic rays". Here is a more in depth look at the effects of position.

"The implications, if true, had potentially enormous implications for the debate about natural causes of warming. When the sun is very active, it can be thought of as pushing away cosmic rays from the Earth, reducing their incidence. When the sun is less active, we see more cosmic rays. This is fairly well understood. But if Svensmark was correct, it would mean that periods of high solar output should coincide with reduced cloud formation (due to reduced cosmic race incidence), which in turn would have a
warming effect on the Earth, since less sunlight would be reflected back into space before hitting the Earth.

Here was a theory, then, that would increase the theoretical impact on climate of an active sun, and better explain why solar irradiance changes might be underestimating the effect of solar output changes on climate and temperatures."[4]

"Since he first suggested his hypothesis over a decade and a half ago, Svensmark and other researchers have slowly been putting together research to test it." The results were: "Scientists found that when shielding was removed and natural cosmic rays allowed to hit the chamber, cloud seeding increased dramatically, and it increased substantially again when additional artificial cosmic rays were added. Svensmark appears to have gotten it right."[5] Proof here is in the next points.

III. The 1500-Year Cycle

This has to do with a cycle of the climate that can explain the warming.

"Through at least the last million years, a moderate 1500-year warm-cold cycle has been superimposed over the longer, stronger Ice Ages and warm interglacials."[6]

Here is a graph related to this:

[7]

There are two things we can conclude from this graph. First, that up-and-down cycles are normal for the long-term climate. This century's global warming is nothing new. The second thing we can conclude, is that today's global warming is not as bad as the Medieval Warm Period's peak yet, and the Medieval Warm Period was less than the Holocene Maximum Period.

"Even more important, the earth is not "the warmest it has ever been." In fact, the earth was much warmer during the Medieval Warm Period when human agriculture flourished!"[7]

"The scientists found evidence that on average, every 1,470 years, plus or minus 500 years, cold, ice-bearing waters, which today circulate around southern Greenland, pushed as far south as Great Britain."[8]

There seems to be a full cycle of up-down-up temperatures of the climate every 1470 years. And this goes as far back as at least 1 million years ago. Currently, we are in an upswing of temperatures, just coming off of the Little Ice Age, the peak to be in a few hundred years, making the peak-to-peak difference between today's global warming and the Medieval Warm Period a little less than 1500 years. So today's Global Warming is a natural, cyclical occurence.

IV. The Sun: The Proof of Theories I.ii and II.ii

The sun's cycles have a lot to do with temperatures also.

"In this chamber, 63 CERN scientists from 17 European and American institutes have done what global warming doomsayers said could never be done — demonstrate that cosmic rays promote the formation of molecules that in Earth’s atmosphere can grow and seed clouds, the cloudier and thus cooler it will be. Because the sun’s magnetic field controls how many cosmic rays reach Earth’s atmosphere (the stronger the sun’s magnetic field, the more it shields Earth from incoming cosmic rays from space), the sun determines the temperature on Earth."[9]

"Svensmark matched the data on cosmic rays from the neutron monitor in Climax, Colorado, with the satellite measurements of solar irradiance from 1970 to 1990. Over the period between 1975 and 1989, he found cosmic rays decreased by 1.2 percent annually, amplifying the sun's change in irradiance about four-fold"[6]

So, as the sun's activity increases, so does the temperature.

This below graph shows the correlation:


[10]

This graph clearly shows that temperature goes up and down with solar activity, because an increase in solar activity directly correlates with an increase in average temperature 1-2 years later.

And as a final side note, I would like to present this graph that helps disprove the anthropogenic cause theory, regarding again, ocean temperature anomalies:


[4]

So "nature" created the same temperature trend as "humans" did. Hmmm.

Sources:

[1]: http://news.nationalgeographic.com...
[2]: http://www.livescience.com...
[3]: MacRae, Paul: "Alarm: Global Warming-- Facts versus Fears."
[4]: http://www.climate-skeptic.com...
[5]: http://www.forbes.com...
[6]: Singer, S. Fred, and Dennis T. Avery: "Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years."
[7]: http://www.isil.org...
[8]: http://www.sciencedaily.com...
[9]: http://www.eutimes.net...
[10]: http://www.petitionproject.org...;
Numidious

Pro

I am here going to prove to the audience and to my opposition that global warming is primarily caused by homo sapiens and is thus a characteristic of the anthropocene - a term recently created by geologists to express "the age of man." I have yet to thorougly read my opponent's arguments, so anything that I write that may seem to be a rebuttal is pure coincidence. I thank my opponent for challenging me to this debate and hope for an interesting exchange of ideas. Either he'll learn something or I will!

Three Steps to Damaging the Planet (Human Style)

A) Find the gases that cause the planet to warm

The following gases contribute to the greenhouse effect...


(10)

Feedback Gases

WATER VAPOUR

Water vapour is a "feedback" to the climate rather than a cause of climate change. It is a greenhouse gas, but it does not contribute to a change in the greenhouse effect, rather, it changes with the temperature of the atmosphere, and thus acts as a way of telling if we're doing things right. Put simply, we on earth can't directly affect the amount of water vapour in the atmosphere, but more of it should tell us that the temperature of the planet is warming (because it evaporates. We can't heat the oceans by ourselves so we need something less direct.) and thus there's a cause - effect relationship - more CO2/Methane/etc. = Higher Temperaures = More Water Vapour

Causal Gases

METHANE

Not what you were expecting, right? But still very important. Most mammals have natural methane emissions of a kind, and this can change, so this will go into our recipe for messing with our climate. Naturally, however, it is emitted at 270 teragrams per year (9) Come back to this later.

NITROUS OXIDE

Also causal to rather than resulting from a change in climate, that is, we can change how much goes into the atmosphere.

CFCs

The same ones that destroy the ozone layer, this time, they're back to destroy the biosphere. I say "destroy" because CFCs are as irrefutably man - made as CO2 and Methane are not, and therefore MUST be at least one reason that the atmosphere is warming. (Since they are artificial, to say that an increase in their quantity has non - anthropogenic causes would be like saying that trees can be made of plastic).

CARBON DIOXIDE

The classic greenhouse gas. Carbon dioxide is absorbed to some extent in grass and trees (photosynthesis) on a natural level, and otherwise may be released through volcanoe and major forest fires, or the combustion of organic material. This usually accounts for 750 gigatons (8) of CO2 moving through the carbon cycle every year, not including human intervention.

The gases listed here under causal warm the earth through the greenhouse effect. This is not controversial, here's how it works


(7)

The greenhouse effect, WITHOUT human intervention (except obviously in CFCs), is caused by the above gases in the above way. Now all we have to do is add a greedy, unenlightened species and we're on our way...

B) Ensure that those gases enter and remain in the atmosphere in greater (or lesser) quantities than before

METHANE

Humans add 330 teragrams per year (9) of methane to the atmosphere every year to the 270 teragrams already entering it, mostly through methane emitted by livestock (a single modern cow emits 270 kg of methane each year), from decay in landfills and from waste treatment, not to mention the burning of biomass. If the 330 teragrams going into the atmosphere WITHOUT humans every year causes 9% of the greenhouse effect, as noted above, then that amount doubling will, of course, ENHANCE the greenhouse effect, causing - global warming. The truth is that it would be strange if it DIDN'T. There are now 2 billion cows on the planet, far more than at any point in history. They, through methane emissions, are enhancing the greenhouse effect.

CARBON DIOXIDE

It has been mentioned that 750 gigatons goes through the carbon cycle every year. Humans add 29 gigatons (8) - haha, the opposition says, the amount of human emissions of CO2 every year pale in compare to how much goes through the carbon cycle! But then one takes closer look - every year, 439 gigatons are released and 450 are absorbed by plants and trees. Suddenly, the 29 gigatons becomes much more frightening, especially when one observes that carbon dioxide is now at 390 ppm (parts per million) in the atmosphere, nearly twice as high as it has been for the last 500,000 years! The higher amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is also caused, of course, by the fact that our conversion of land for agriculture has led to land with plants that absorb less CO2 (virtually all my references will say this) so that the number of gigatons absorbed (450) is decreasing whilst the 29 is increasing, resulting in idle CO2 sitting around, warming up the atmosphere - as it must as a greenhouse gas.
Variation in carbon dioxide concentration during the past 400,000 years (historical data from the Vostock ice core).

CO2 is poisonous as well, by the way, so even if my worthy opponent and/or audience leaves this debate with their minds unchanged on the topic of anthropogenic global warming, remember that there is still reason for CO2 emissions to be curtailed!

CFCs

This is an optimistic part of the human - greenhouse effect story in that we actually stopped putting CFCs into the atmosphere when we realized how awful they were for the ozone layer. Therefore we do not put CFCs into the atmosphere any more - it's like a defunct greenhouse gas, in retirement.

NITROUS OXIDE

NO2 has an atmospheric lifetime of 121 years (11) so naturally even a small amount of nitrous coming out of your exhaust enhances global warming for years to come. And when it's 110 to 240 thousand tonnes coming from car exhaust pipes every year, you know you have a problem. Add 2 to 4 million tonnes from fertilization practices in agriculture and you have a MAJOR problem! Add to this the fact that NO2 is 310 times as powerful as CO2 as a greenhouse gas and you have a full blown nightmare.

Given the endless facts and evidence presented above, it would be strange if the atmosphere was NOT warming up from human intervention. The below only affirms what should be evident. On to our third and final step.

C) Watch as the planet warms or cools six degrees, the difference between now and the last ice age

It is often mentioned that the earth's climate has change in the past, and that is most assuredly true. It is also true, of course, that the earth's climate can change in the future, and for different reasons. However, what is unique about the warming of the anthropocene is that it has happened and is happening so suddenly, more suddenly than in the past. The closest example of climate change at this speed (just 120 years since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution), obviously excluding the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs, is the Palaeo - Eocene Thermal Maximum (13) about 55 million years ago, when the climate changed 5 to 8 degrees,

that warming, of course, took several thousand years.

Sources

1. http://climate.nasa.gov...
2. http://www.climatechangechallenge.org...
3. http://environment.nationalgeographic.com...
4. http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com...
5. http://news.nationalgeographic.com...
6. http://www.nytimes.com...
7. http://www.global-greenhouse-warming.com...
8. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
9. http://en.wikipedia.org...
10. http://raytekmalaysia.blogspot.ca...
11. http://www.flickoff.org...
12. http://www.epa.gov...
13. http://www.guardian.co.uk...

Debate Round No. 2
Ron-Paul

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for presenting his arguments.

I. Find the Gases that Causes the Planet to Warm

My opponent here is just presenting the different gases. This is an observation, not an argument. We will differ when anthropogenic arguments are presented.

II. Ensure that those Gases Enter and Remain in the Atmosphere in Greater (or Lesser) Quantities than Before

II.i. Methane

Human contribution to methane concentrations is actually rather small:


[1]

And even if human causation was the main factor of methane concentrations, the amount of methane increase has actually been decreasing, and is now decreasing:


[2]

Notice that during the infamous "hockey stick" (I will get to that later) times, methane increases were actually decreasing.

So, not only are humans relatively small causes of methane concentrations, but methane amounts are actaully decreasing at this point.

II.ii. CFCs

Even though CFCs are mostly man-made in origin, there concentrations have been decreasing also:


[3]

Again, just like methane amounts, during the main warming times, CFCs concentration increases were decreasing, and are now negative.

II.iii. Nitrous Oxide

As with methane, human contributions to nitrous oxide are very small:


[1]

In fact, ocean amoeba are a major cause of nitrous oxide: "Dr Trimmer looked at nitrous oxide production in the Arabian Sea, which accounts for up to 18 % of global ocean emissions. He found that the gas is primarily produced by bacteria trying to make nitrogen gas."[4] And that is just the Arabian Sea.

And even if cows did cause a lot of warming: "...a new study found that cattle grazed on the grasslands of China actually reduce another greenhouse gas, nitrous oxide."[5] So, humans are positive in this aspect.

II.iv. Carbon Dioxide

This will be my main point.

First, by the greenhouse effect, global warming should be starting from the lower atmosphere and moving to the surface, but this is not happening: "...satellite and high-altitude balloon data confirm that the lower atmosphere is not trapping lots of additional heat due to higher CO2 concentrations. It is hard to know how fast the Earth's highly variable surface is warming, but it is warming faster than the lower atmosphere where the CO2 is accumulating. This is strong evidence that CO2 is not the primary climate factor."[6]

Here is a graph relating to the point, showing the decrease in upper troposphere temperature anomalies, disproving the greenhouse theory here:



[7]

Second, CO2 levels do not correlate with temperature very well: "In the last decade, there has been no clear warming trend (as the UK Met Office and IPCC’s own figures demonstrate). In the last century, much of the warming occurred prior to 1940, when human emissions of CO2 were relatively small compared to today. During the post-war economic boom (when one would have expected the temperature to rise) the world cooled, from the 1940s till the mid-70s (again, this is evident from accepted data used by the IPCC)."[8]

Here is a graph showing the fallacy of the CO2-temperature correlation:


[9]

As shown, CO2 does not correlate with temperature. This next graph compares solar activity and CO2 to temperature. It is easy to see which one correlates with temperature more:


[10]

Third, global warming is not starting at the poles like it should be, by the greenhouse theory. In fact, there has been general, relative cooling: "If the greenhouse thoery were valid, temperatures in the Arctic and the Antarctic would have risen several degrees Celsius since 1940 due to the huge emissions of man-made CO2... Recently, a team led by the University of Chicago's Peter Doran published a paper in Nature saying, 'Although previous reports suggest recent continental warming, our spatial analysis of Antarctic meteorological data demonstrates a net cooling on the Antarctic continent between 1966 and 2000'. The data from 21 Antarctic surface stations show an average continental decline of 0.008 degrees C from 1978 to 1998, and the infrared data from satellites operating since 1979 show a decline of 0.42 degrees C per decade. David W. J. Thompson of Colorado State University and Susan Soloman of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration also report a cooling trend in the Antarctic interior. ... report that satellite imaging shows increases in Souther Ocean sea ice parameters from 1978 to 1996 and an increase in the length of the sea-ice season in the 1990s"[6]

"Greenland has also been growing colder over the last half-century...""... examined the temperatures for the entire Arctic for 1951 to 1990, he [Rajmund Przybylak, Polish climatologist] reported, 'no tangible manifestations of the greenhouse effect [could] be identified"[6]

This graph shows the arctic temperatures. The blue line is the melt point. Clearly, it spends little time there:


[11]

This graph shows that Antarctic sea ice extent is rising:


[12]

Fourth and finally, CO2 is a lagging indicator: "...the CO2 changes have lagged about 800 years behind the temperuatre changes. Global warming has produced more CO2, rather than more CO2 producing global warming."[6] So, the theory is reversed. CO2 does not cause global warming, but vice versa.

II.v. Water Vapor

Believe it or not, the four gases mentioned above actually make up about 5% of all greenhouse gases. The other 95% is natural made water vapor:


[1]

So all of the other gases' contribution to global warming is almost negligible compared to water vapor.

II.vi. Conclusion

"Just how much of the "Greenhouse Effect" is caused by human activity?

It is about 0.28%, if water vapor is taken into account-- about 5.53%, if not."

III. Watch as the Planet Warms or Cools Six Degrees, the Difference between Now and the Last Ice Age


"During the last 150 years there has been another fairly sustained period of global warming amounting to an increase of about 0.7 degree Celsius. In spite of rhetoric to the contrary, the majority of this warming took place naturally before 1940. This warming trend was interrupted by a 35-year cooling period from 1940 to 1975. This caused many climatologists to actually predict that we were entering another ice age. At that time the public was obsessed with “global cooling.” Today, our obsession is “global warming."[13]

Still, today's global warming is nothing new, in fact, it is not even that big:


[14]

Sources:

[1]: http://geocraft.com...
[2]: http://www.skepticalscience.com...
[3]: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov...
[4]: http://www.sciencedaily.com...
[5]: http://www.telegraph.co.uk...
[6]: Singer, S. Fred, and Dennis T. Avery: "Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years."
[7]: http://www.drroyspencer.com...
[8]: http://www.greatglobalwarmingswindle.com...
[9]: http://members.shaw.ca...
[10]: http://www.outersite.org...
[11]: http://a-sceptical-mind.com...
[12]: http://a-sceptical-mind.com...
[13]: http://www.thefreemanonline.org...
[14]: MacRae, Paul: "Alarm: Global Warming-- Facts versus Fears."
Numidious

Pro

Interesting points, Ron-Paul. Sorry for leaving the debate to the last minute, I've been rather busy of late. Thanks for taking all this time to type out a response.

I. The current state of the galaxy AND the sun? That is very unusual, since they are not necessarily correlate.

I.i. The Rest of the Solar System

It is interesting that Mars is brought up here, a planet that we don't really have information for before 1970 and that we are only scratching the surface on in terms of dust storms and their planetary effects etc. but let's look at the argument...

"carbon dioxide "ice caps" near Mars's south pole had been diminishing for three summers in a row." Three years? How does one infer warming from this? However, I shall quote a climate science website...

"This is essentially due to large scale dust storms that were common back then (1977), compared to a lower level of storminess now. The mean temperature on Mars, averaged over the Martian year can change by many degrees from year to year, depending on how active large scale dust storms are." Thus the cause of the three - year - melting in ice caps? Dust storms, which, by the way, act like Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere.

There has been no direct observation of global warming on Triton. There has been an observance of greater luminosity, but that is because Neptune does have changes (those causing Triton to seem brighter) but they are seasonal as well - a year on Neptune is 165 years on earth. Neptune is entering it's Summer.

As for Jupiter, it is not warming at all. Predictions say it will warm because of storm and dust movements, not because of solar radiation. As for Pluto, we can go back to Neptune. Pluto's orbit is 248 earth years - this is like observing earth for three weeks. How do we know where it is on it's orbit? A probe has never even actually been sent to Pluto!

I.ii.

I agree that less cosmic rays will be hitting the earth. However, the connection between cosmic rays and cloud cover is uncertain, and, more importantly in this argument, cosmic rays do not correlate with temperature AFTER 1994 - so really this could be an argument that global warming DOES have human causes, because, as this chart shows, temperatures have gone up dramatically where cosmic rays have gone down only slightly of late.


(7)

II.

Humans, of course, are the main internal cause of global warming!

II.i.

It is impossible for an ocean oscillation to create or retain heat of it's own. It merely circulates heat throughout the atmosphere and oceans, (5) which is why the atmosphere becomes warmer at some points. If you think about it, anything else would be ludicrous - currents CAUSE heat? Impossible. There are short term effects of heating in the atmosphere (and cooling) from the circulation, but what this chart shows (5) is how these circulations differ from actual changes in heat.



II.ii.

I refer the audience to my earlier graph, which suggests that there is no causal effect between cosmic rays and global warming over the long term. I also refer my audience to four studies that were conducted on the subject after Svensmark's 1998.... These conclude that

"no statistically significant correlations were found between any of the four cloud parameters and GCR"
- Kristjansson et al. (2008)

"no response of global cloud cover to Forbush decreases at any altitude and latitude." - Calogovic et al. (2010)

""galactic cosmic rays appear to play a minor role for atmospheric aerosol formation events, and so for the connected aerosol-climate effects as well." Kulmala et al. (2010)

What my graph here shows is that the third (and most recent of all four studies, including my opponent's) premise would seem to be correct.

III.

Interestingly, the opposition's graph only goes back 1000 years. To give the audience a more holistic picture, here is one of five year averages in the northern hemisphere going back to 0 CE.



What is important to take into account here is that the sun does indeed affect earth's temperature, but in different ways and at different times, and in greater amounts of time than of late. My opposition says that the Medieval Warming Period was warmer than today, however, this is not so. The misinterpretation of data is a result of the restrictedness of the data - most of it was taken in the North Atlantic and Greenland, where various forms of paleoatmospheric research show that it was indeed much warmer today. HOWEVER, in the tropical Pacific it was much cooler than today. Overall, as my graph has shown, we have reached global temperatures that are on average MUCH warmer than the averages of the Medieval Warming period!

And here is another graph similar to that of my opponent but more specific....


Different colours showing different areas/forms of evidence from a variety of sources.

All in all what I am saying here is that in 1950 my opposition could have seemed quite correct in his graphing, with perhaps a few discrepancies concerning the rapidity of temperature increase. However, it has CONTINUED to warm, and this is what is worrying to scientists. It continues to warm to the point that, if it should continue at current rates, the earthly survival of plants and animals may be threatened.

IV.

Another used - to - be - true argument. Once more, this graph shows



that over the past several decades, temperature and solar activity have gone in opposite directions. Why is this? Because of the anthropogenic effect. Note that this following graph deals with WORLD temperatures rather than US specific, which are neither accurate nor credible as evidence of global climate as a whole. (Different places on earth experience different warmings/coolings at different times.

V.
This point is, I believe, backed by flawed logic - both are cases of warming, but with different causes. If a logger pull out an axe and chops down a tree, then points to a tree that fell naturally and says "the tree that I just chopped down fell naturally because it looks the same as the other one" would you believe the logger's "logic" or would you believe what you saw with your own eyes?



There would seem to be many poins here that are not correlated (thus making them all true to be more unlikely) and many that do not seem to be backed by credible research. There have been many causes of warming on a global level in the past, humans are just another. And we are a natural cause because, contrary to what blind followers of the religion that externalities to short term profits do not exist, governments, businesses, and individuals are fallible and can cause problems on an environmental scale.

However, I appreciate my opponent's points and look forward to reading his criticisms of mine.

1. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
2. http://www.realclimate.org...
3. http://www.newscientist.com...
4. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
5. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
6. http://scienceblogs.com...
7. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
8. http://www.newscientist.com...
9. http://en.wikipedia.org...
10. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
11. http://en.wikipedia.org...
12. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
Debate Round No. 3
Ron-Paul

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for engaging with me in this great debate. I appreciate your commitment.

I. The Current State of the Galaxy AND the Sun? That Is Very Unusual, Since they Do Not Necessarily Correlate

I.i. The Rest of the Solar System

"...it was noted the planet [Mars] was experiencing rapid warming, similar to what the Earth is currently undergoing.... The Martian icecaps are melting at a perilous pace.... ...and that both [warmings on Earth and Mars] can be explained by changes in solar irradiance."[1]

"Global warming was detected on Jupiter last year, and the warming is apparently behind the formation of a second red spot. Global warming on Neptune's moon Triton has also been noted, with severe atmospheric changes as a result. And even tiny Pluto has experienced moderate warming in recent years, with temperatures rising a full 3.5 degrees.

The common denominator in all these cases, the Earth included, is of course the Sun, which is in the middle of an extremely active period at present."[1]

So yes, all of these bodies are indeed warming, and it can all be attributed to increases in solar irradiance.

I.ii. The Position of the Milky Way Galaxy ad Cosmic Rays

"With the new results just published in the recognised journal Geophysical Research Letters, scientists have succeeded for the first time in directly observing that the electrically charged particles coming from space and hitting the atmosphere at high speed contribute to creating the aerosols that are the prerequisites for cloud formation."[2] So yes, there is direct proof.

Here is a picture explaining how cosmic rays create cloud formation:


[2]

And here is the proof for all of this:


[3]

And finally, I know how much my opponent likes long-period graphs, so I thought I would go back 500 million years:



[4]

So as shown, cosmic rays create clouds, so fewer cosmic rays create fewer clouds. And, fewer cosmic rays mean more sunspots, which means increased solar activity, which means warming (I will get to this hypothesis later). And, fewer clouds means higher temperatures.

And, even if cosmic rays and temperature were diverging, you are ignoring the laws of thermodynamics (I will also get to this later).

II. Earthly Causes

II.i. Ocean Current Anomalies

The graph my opponent presented, when looked at closer, is actually self-defeating. You can see that when the PDO index is negative, temperatures decline, when the PDO index is nil, temperatures remain at the same level, and when the PDO index is positive, temperatures rise.

Everyone can see the correlation:


[Your Graph+My Paint Work]

Why are they diverging? Because there has been more positive PDO this year than negative, meaning that there will be more warming. This cannot be attributed to man because there is no correlation between CO2 levels and the PDO.

"A warm Pacific (positive PDO Index) as we found from 1922 to 1947 and again 1977 to 1997 has been found to be accompanied by more El Ninos, while a cool Pacific more La Ninas. Since El Ninos have been shown to lead to global warming and La Ninas global cooling, this should have an affect on annual mean temperature trends in North America."[5]

Again, the correlation can be better shown in these graphs:

The correlation is very strong here, and, ocean currents rise and fall just before temperatures directly, meaning that ocean currents cause direct temperature changes, not the other way around:


[5]

And again, here. As a side note, the upward linear trend started way before CO2 was added in any substantial quantity (i.e. temperature growth is not accelerating). It correlates perfectly:



[6]

And finally, I advance this graph again because it shows perfectly my argument. Notice how temperatures start to rise 2-3 years after a PDO cycle change, again indicating that ocean currents cause direct temperature changes:


[6]

II.ii. Clouds: A Continuation of Point I.ii.

This is from an experiment at CERN called CLOUD: "Scientists found that when shielding was removed and natural cosmic rays allowed to hit the chamber, cloud seeding increased dramatically, and it increased substantially again when additional artificial cosmic rays were added."[7]

"They [Researchers] put realistic mixtures of the Earth's atmospheric gases into a large-reaction chamber, with ultraviolet light as a stand-in for the sun. When they turned on the UV, microscopic droplets of sulphuric acid-cloud seeds-started floating through the chamber."[8]

"Carslaw et al. point out that cosmic ray intensity declined by about 15 percent during the last century 'owing to an increase in the solar open magnetic flux by more than a factor of 2.' They further report that 'this 100-year change in intensity is about the same magnitude as the observed change over the last solar cycle.'"[9]

So yes, there is direct proof of the inverse relationship between cosmic rays and cloud formation. I already proved this correlation in point I.ii., so I will not repeat it here.

III. The 1500-Year Cycle

I will show this graph again, and go even further back than my opponent:


[9]

So indeed, the Medieval Warm Period and the Holocene Climate Maximum were higher than today.

And, there is ample evidence that the Medieval Warm Period and Holocene Climate Maximum were hotter than today:

"Chinese temperatures were 2 to 3 degrees C higher than present during China's climate optimum based on pollen data and the souther limits of permafrost."
"The Mediterranean region, including the coast of North Africa, got more rainfall during the Medieval Warming period than it does in our time."
"...during the Medieval Warming... . Temperatures may have been as much as 2.5 degrees C warmer [than today] due to a southward shift of the climate belts."[8]

The Medieval Warm Period and the Holocene Climate Maximum were clearly higher in all areas.

Here are some graphs showing this:

China:


[8]

South Africa:


[8]

As shown, again, the Medieval Warm Period was a lot higher in temperature than today, which was eclipsed [MWP] by the Holocene Climate Maximum.

[10]

So, today's warming is clearly not unprecedented.

"These are the Medieval Warm Period, which is well known, but also a period during the toga-wearing Roman times when temperatures were apparently 1 deg C warmer than now."[11] This is backed up by tree ring research.

"Indirect evidence suggests that the average temperature was as much as 1.5 degrees Celsius warmer than today."[12]

So why this unprecedented warming in your graphs? Because it is scaled badly. It has only gone up 1 degree Celsius. Explain all of the evidence I have.

IV. The Sun

This is wrong for one reason: thermodynamics. The sun's activity level is so high that even when it stabilizes, there is still going to be an increase in temperatures. Notice temoerature increases are leveling off as the sun's activity decreases.

Still, even if that wasn't true, there is a lag between the lines. The lag is that the sun is 15 years ahead of the temperature. The temperature decrease is just starting. The lag:


[8]


Sources:

[1]: http://www.dailytech.com...
[2]: http://wattsupwiththat.com...
[3]: http://climatereview.net...
[4]: http://members.shaw.ca...
[5]: http://wattsupwiththat.com...
[6]: http://www.climate-skeptic.com...
[7]: http://www.forbes.com...
[8]: Singer, S. Fred, and Dennis T. Avery: "Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years."
[9]: MacRae, Paul: "Alarm: Global Warming-- Facts versus Fears."
[10]: http://tucsoncitizen.com...
[11]: http://www.dailymail.co.uk...
[12]: http://www.thefreemanonline.org...
Numidious

Pro

Hello again,

I appreciate my opponent's commitment also. The debate has been interesting, if long. Unfortunately my last response was somewhat incoherent towards the end - this is because it was written at a time when I should have been asleep...

I. Find the Gases that Causes the Planet to Warm

I am glad that my opponent does not refute this. However, what my opponent must mean by agreeing with it is that the greenhouse effect actually exists, as I explained. If the greenhouse effect exists, then enhancement of that effect must warm the planet! My opponent states later that "carbon dioxide does not correlate with temperature very well," but it must if he agree with these statements.

II. Ensure that those Gases Enter and Remain in the Atmosphere in Greater (or Lesser) Quantities than Before
i. Methane

I agree that, relative to the natural amount of methane entering the atmosphere, the human contribution is fairly small (20%). What my opponent does not realize is that this small change can have MASSIVE effects - the CO2 and Methane (and water vapour) that are in and are cycling through our atmosphere now have been keeping the planet warm for ages, and thank goodness for that as otherwise the average temperature on earth would have been at -18 degrees celsius, that's zero degrees fahrenheit for you Americans, otherwise known as enough for the surface of the planet to be solid ice!

Now we know the effects of the amount we already have (from -18 to 14, or 0 to 57 in fahrenheit) just imagine what a slight, minor increase will do... Keeping in mind that the difference between now and the last ice age is just 5 degrees celsius, that's 10 fahrenheit.

Methane warms the world "20 times faster than CO2" (1) and although it is only at 1/200th of the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere (and the increase is proportional to this) that still makes methane emissions responsible for 28% of current warming.

My opponent's graph is correct, saying that in 2004 methane emissions were going down. Does that preclude the idea that methane caused warming in the years before 2004, or will again? The argument is fallacious in and of itself. Also, AFTER 2004 methane emissions began to increase again, shown here.


This may be because methane was trapped in arctic ice, melted by global warming. A fact, by the way, that my opponent cannot dispute - to say that global warming is not happening wrecks his own arguments, to say that there is no natural gas/methane in arctic sea ice is to contradict accepted science.

II.ii. CFCs

Once more my opponent asserts that because something will not happen in the future means that it is not happening in the present or did not happen in the past. CFCs, which are entirely human synthesized, are no longer in use. This is, as I mentioned earlier, a success. Since CFCs never had the chance to warm the planet too much (though they certainly damaged the ozone layer) I added them as an afterthought on how humans are capable of changing our planet.

II.iii. Nitrous Oxide

My opponent's reply here is similar to his on methane, and I give a similar response - small changes in the environment can have massive effects, and my evidence is the same as well - the temperature the planet would be at without the greenhouse effect. Nitrous oxide is particularly interesting in this case because it traps heat 300x as fast as carbon dioxide. This is a phenomenal amount, but since much less nitrous oxide ends up in the atmosphere every year than carbon dioxide, it remains a lesser contributor to warming.

My opponent asserts that cows reduce nitrous oxide in the atmosphere - but by how much? The reference my opponent provided was inconclusive at best.

iv. Carbon Dioxide

My opponent's assertion here that the troposphere is not warming is, unfortunately, incorrect, as this graph should exemplify.



According to Science Daily, "The troposphere, the lower part of the atmosphere closest to the Earth, is warming and this warming is broadly consistent with both theoretical expectations and climate models, according to a new scientific study that reviews the history of understanding of temperature changes and their causes in this key atmospheric layer."

My opponent claims that his graph "disproves the greenhouse theory" but does not recognize that the natural greenhouse effect has been warming the planet for thousands of years - he is welcome to suggest that CO2 could come from another source than humans, but to say that the greenhouse effect does not exist contradicts this (5) this (6) and this (7) and many, many other sources. In fact, the greenhouse effect itself was known to be true long before global warming, in 1824 when Joseph Fourier first expained it. You have to wonder, where else would all the CO2 go? It doesn't just disappear!

My opponent is self contradictory here, as in the same argument he concurs that carbon dioxide and other gases warm the atmosphere but denies that the greenhouse effect they create exists, and furthermore denies that adding any MORE carbon dioxide would warm the atmosphere to a greater extent!

If one is to study my opponent's graph here more closely, one realizes that the ppm of carbon dioxide is increasing on this graph, and quite alarmingly. In a mere 30 years it increased by 30 ppm in our entire atmosphere! This is very alarming, especially considering what I mentioned earlier, the fact that the natural amount of ppm of carbon in our atmosphere has warmed the earth 60 degrees fahrenheit and 30 celsius! I repeat again as well that the difference between now and the last ice age was 6 degrees. Thus the temperature and the ppm shown here ARE correlated, and in a very alarming way.



The next graph presented is in fact a clever trick - it focus only on minor temperature changes and not on the larger picture it merely sets the information so that the lines fit. It is true, as I have mentioned that the sun causes short term variations in temperature. However, here is a graph that shows OVERALL temperatures, and thus the long term correlation between CO2 and temperature.



The next piece here (A "cooling" arctic) is simply incorrect. I can show you better than explain, but here are a few quotes anyhow.

"Since 1951 the arctic has warmed twice as much as the global average" (9)
"The temperature in the arctic has gone up 1.5 degrees celsius, whereas the world has gone up 0.7 degrees."
"Arctic's rapid temperature rise breaks records." (10)
"Last year NASA released reports showing arctic temperatures going beyond 2010 records." (11)





For my opponent's final point, he says that global warming causes rises in CO2 levels. How? The greenhouse effect has been established, and accepted by my opponent. If CO2 levels are a a lagging indicator, then how are 1960 - 1990 on these graphs explained?




II.iv. Water Vapour

What my opponent does not realize here is that temperature rises cause water vapour to increase! Therefore a 1 degree celsius rise in temperature from CO2 causes a 3 degree rise from water vapour - thermal expansion means more water evaporates.

No more space - one last graph.


This explains the speed of current warming best.

1. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
2. http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov...
3. http://greenliving.nationalgeographic.com...
4. 4. http://www.climatechangechallenge.org....
5. http://www.sciencedaily.com...
6. http://en.wikipedia.org...
7. http://www.climatechange.gc.ca...
8. http://wattsupwiththat.com...
9. http://www.economist.com...
10.http://www.wwfblogs.org...
11. http://neven1.typepad.com...
12. http://www.skepticalscience.com...
Debate Round No. 4
38 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Numidious 4 years ago
Numidious
Yet it is quite possible that we could cause a nuclear catastrophe that could eliminate life on earth?
Posted by acecombat2 4 years ago
acecombat2
hmmm Global Warming Effects cause by Human unnaturally as addition.Planet Always Warming In Milky Way, Just a reminder that human activity alone can't cause global warming a lot. It has to be stacking or chain effect both by natural warming and human activities relation. In my opinion.
Posted by Ron-Paul 5 years ago
Ron-Paul
What are you trying to say?
Posted by 16kadams 5 years ago
16kadams
CO2 doubles, Y effect is halved. Over time CO2's effect would be zero. Also Ron missed an important point. To prove your point you must prove climate is that sensitive. So its computer model estimates or skeptical assumptions based on observed trends... If the skeptics are right the minute increase will have little effect. And a mentioned above would eventually be zero. As climate sensitivity to our new CO2 is low, the 1.6/100,000 man made CO2 particles will have little effect. http://mises.org...

A CO2 effect might to more to lower the greenhouse effect rather then increase it (link above).
Posted by 16kadams 5 years ago
16kadams
Ron, their margin of error is sometimes 2 degrees... we have warmed two degrees.

50% of it is urban heat islands.
Posted by Ron-Paul 5 years ago
Ron-Paul
Sorry. Your last point is irrelevant is what I was last trying to say.
Posted by Ron-Paul 5 years ago
Ron-Paul
So my biased anti-AGW site is so much worse than your biased pro-AGW site? Please explain.

As for the hottest year dispute, in case you didn't read the article, the temperature difference between 2010 and 2005 was a enormous 0.02 degrees. That could really cause the world to end. Clearly, heating increases are now negligable.

Yes, I have admitted that there has been recent warming, but that is in relation to the Little Ice Age. Most of this warming happened before 1930-5, before the major pumping of CO2 into the atmosphere ever occured. So yes, there is warming, but one, not right now, and two, mostly before huge CO2 emissions and even before the whole AGW theory came out.

Because I know my arguments. I have read a lot of their articles and I could tear them to shreads with facts and information that is actually reliable.

As for the computer models, I will split this up. First, the hockey stick. This is one of the most unreliable and exaggerated graphs to ever come out of modern science. In the first IPCC graph, it showed the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age. But in their second report, they omitted it from their graph, and thus, the hockey stick. Why? Because it sold books and got them federal grants. Happens all the time. The fact is that the hockey stick contradicts hundreds of historical sources and previous scientific papers that mentioned the MWP and the LIA. They did exist.

Second, the unreliable computer models. The models assume that the Earth's climate would be stable without human intervention. This is a completely incorrect assumption. The climate has indeed changed. The thermometers come from urban heat islands, which can greatly exaggerate average Earth temperature. They have most likely overstated surface warming by 40%. They don't use more accurate satellite and weather balloon data.

Yes, I did admit that CO2 levels are increasing, but I said that their effect on warming temperatures is decreasing. Your point is irr
Posted by Numidious 5 years ago
Numidious
Climate Depot - Arguably the most biased website I have ever set my eyes upon. All references seem to be from the media (specifically from the guardian or the website itself) and I see little there backed by credible scientific evidence.

As for the hottest year dispute, the scientist at NASA is quite correct - it doesn't matter what specifically the hottest year is, just so long as it was in the past decade, and it evidently was. The planet is warming regardless.

You have already admitted that there has been a recent warming, and I have given graphs showing exactly how that warming has played out.

How could you destroy Skeptical Science's arguments easily? That claim seems baseless. How do you know that their computer models are unreliable and exaggerated? What makes you so sure - is that not bias?

As for the last point, my opponent admits that the level of CO2 parts per million in the atmosphere is increasing - which means that less is being absorbed, which means that some factor is causing the level of CO2 in the atmosphere to double. If humans have such a minimal effect, how can this be explained?

I'm off camping so I leave the floor to my opponent and the voters. Their profiles and comments have taught me something about how this issue is viewed. I thank my opponent for an interesting debate regardless.
Posted by 16kadams 5 years ago
16kadams
Numidious, yes I have. I know both sides
Posted by Ron-Paul 5 years ago
Ron-Paul
Response Part II:

Skeptical Science: First, I could destory Skeptical Science's arguments easily. Second, their computer models are unreliable, so their data is bound to be exaggerated at best.

CO2 logarithm: This is true because the CO2-temperature correlation is on a logarithmic graph.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by Contra 5 years ago
Contra
Ron-PaulNumidiousTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Con's arguments, mainly concerning the solar trend of the solar system, and how natural elements such as the ocean currents more closely aligned with temp. changes than Co2 helped Con with arguments. Pro's arguments didn't respond to Con's rebuttal that the human released gases were minimal in output compared to the natural output. Overall, Con had better arguments. Very scientific debate.
Vote Placed by Clash 5 years ago
Clash
Ron-PaulNumidiousTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Con successfully negated the resolution by nicely proving that mankind is not the main cause of global warming. He did this by, for example, giving several statistics which clearly showed that mankind is not the main cause of global warming. In particular, what really made me vote Con was his arguments about the planets etc. Pro also had some good arguments but in my opinion, they were not good enough to successfully prove that mankind is the main cause of global warming.
Vote Placed by Greyparrot 5 years ago
Greyparrot
Ron-PaulNumidiousTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Con wins on similar heating of planets in the solar system.
Vote Placed by 16kadams 5 years ago
16kadams
Ron-PaulNumidiousTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Comments