Streetwise Professor

August 15, 2023

Want to Mess With a Warmist’s Head?

Filed under: Climate Change — cpirrong @ 12:04 pm

Ask him/her (but please inquire about pronouns first!) whether the Hunga Tonga eruption accounts for a significant proportion of this summer’s supposedly historically high temperatures. This puts the warmist on the horns of a dilemma a la the famous meme:

The likely answer you’ll get is no, because the warmist desperately wants to attribute this year’s weather to anthropogenic causes. (NB: weather is climate when it advances their narrative, but isn’t when it doesn’t.). Suggesting a natural driver of warm temperatures this year would undercut that narrative.

But! Unlike terrestrial volcanoes which have an often powerful cooling effect (due to their release of sun reflecting aerosols, especially H2SO4), Hunga Tonga is an undersea volcano: its eruption resulted in the release of substantial quantities of water vapor into the atmosphere. Water vapor is a powerful greenhouse gas.

Therefore, denying the impact of Hunga Tonga on 2023 summer temperatures is. . . wait for it . . . CLIMATE DENIAL! Because this would entail denying that greenhouse gasses materially impact global temperatures.

So if they say “No!” then point at them like Donald Sutherland in Invasion of the Body Snatchers and scream “DENIER!”

On a more serious note, Hunga Tonga does seem to provide a fairly clean natural experiment to measure the climate sensitivity coefficient empirically in a way that does take into account feedbacks. If the amount of water vapor released into the atmosphere can be measured with some accuracy, the forcing can be calculated. Combining this with the measured temperature anomaly is an empirical measure of sensitivity that does not require a layer cake of modeling assumptions about feedback.

But that’s a job for scientists. In the meantime, you can entertain yourself by putting warmists on the hot seat.

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1 Comment »

  1. “But that’s a job for scientists.” Ah, but who will give them the research grants?

    Comment by dearieme — August 16, 2023 @ 7:06 am

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