Climate-gate

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by Photizo, Nov 29, 2009.

  1. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    23,198
    Not understanding the temp diff you speak of. For example N2 & O2 have mass ratio of 7/8 so both at same temp have the N2 moving faster (on average) by root(8/7). That would be true in a 80% N2, 20% O2 mix like air of the reverse (80% O2, 20% N2 mix) I.e. the percent concentration has NOTHING TO DO WITH THE QUESTION.

    It is true that as you go up (miles), in the air the relative concentration of heavier O2 would decrease even if there were no chemistry going on. You can best understand this if you consider very, very low density mix. I.e. one with mean free a foot or so. After a collision both free fall under gravity until the next collision but the fall time is less for the faster molecule, so on the average it loses less altitude free falling before it randomly scatters again.

    Re-state your question, it you still have one, after understanding what I have just explained.
     
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  3. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

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    Why are we ruling out a Pingo?
     
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  5. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Agreed. Nor did CO2 concentrations at least twice or probably three times higher. "This tme is different" because the RATE of CH4 release is much faster - so fast that it is destroying the OH radial faster than natural sources can replenish it.

    Each destroys the other in chemical reactions that end up mostly as CO2 & H2O. The first makes gram for gram less than 1% of the global warming in the first 10 years after a puff is released than same mass puff of CH4. The second is also a much stronger GHG than CO2, but rain removes most that is beng added by greater ocean evaporation - not without damage, called historic flooding and land slides. Japan has just had in 38 hours more rain than either Paris or LA gets in an entire year, and another big typhoon hits next week! (number 5 , I think, this season)

    This mutual destruction of CH4 & OH is war that the CH4 is now winning and it never has before. Even though much more was released slowly over hundred of thousands of year, and the OH killed it s fast as it was released. - NOT true today.
    How the CH4 concentration is growing and that of OH is falling, so every year now the half life of a molecule of CH4 is increasing by 0.3 years. I.e. not only is much more, more rapidly being released, but it also stay in the air doing it powerful Global Warming longer - never happened before. Here is the data (I've posted the references before, more than once, so won't did them up again.):
    In 2003 the half life most commonly published for CH4 was 9.6 years. In 2013, the most accurate values published were 12.6 years and the increase is increasing faster than linearly!

    This is one of the most important self accelerating positive feed back systems, but of course it accelerates many others (for example, the ocean evaporation rate, with the greater average humidity then in turn accelerating the rate of CH4 release). The only other major positive feed back system that is currently strong by its self alone (I know of) is the melting arctic ice as when a square meter of floating ice turns the water the absorption of solar energy there increases by at least 800% due the albedo change from `0.1 to 0.8 but that now open water (in summer) area increases the "reach" of the waves so the grow to larger amplitude and that then break up more of the ever thinner ice. Now mainly one year old ice ~ 30 cm thick, not the former multi- year ice a couple of meters thick that not even the now stronger wave could break up.

    About a decade ago, before these mutually re-enforcing self feed back positive feed back system were fully appreciated, ice free arctic ocean in the summer was expected in the time frame 2070 to 2090, now it will happen in 2015 or 2016! There is a strong "its never happened so can't" bias in human belief systems. I forget the name psychologist have gene this but as Bess told Porgy: "It ain't necessarily so."

    The latest estimates by the best Arctic methane experts (workers in the field collecting data for nearly two decades, not ONLY sitting in university professor's chairs) is there is now a real possibility of a 50 gig ton release of CH4 in in the next few years that would take only a decade to be released. I.e. a rapid temperature surge of about 6 degrees in that and next decade. -
    Watch this month old video which exactly concerns that 50 giga ton release of CH4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRqv_RhLno4

    If that does happen - civilization ends with food production less than half that required for current population; civil unrest, wars, plagues, diseases from more than 200 million unburied bodies, being the main direct killer in the richer societies rather than lack of food directly, but food prices would of course soar so even in the US at least 20 million would starve or be killed by FEMA, national guard and the police trying to stop looting and food riots.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 5, 2014
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  7. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Global Warming is main reason. That was the first suggested cause of this (and other craters now forming in methane rich parts of Siberia):

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Link I gave was not very clear on why a pingo was not the cause, but as is shown in your photos, pingos rarely if ever occur without many more near by. Also pingos melt - do not explode with a ring of ejecta left around a 200 foot deep crater.
     
  8. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

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    That's not a very good reason for a number of reasons. Chief among which is that pingos and global warming are not mutually exclusive.

    No it wasn't. I've been following this story since it first broke. The first suggested causes were a methane blowout (including combustion), a meteorite impact, and aliens.
    At least ome source I have seen suggests this newest hole is (or was) 70% filled with melting ice.

    Some leave behind holes and what look an awful lot like ejecta rings. Maybe you should actually look into the mechanism before dismissing it out of hand because you don't like (like you did with Kasting's paper).
     
  9. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

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    source
    Also note tthat, in the Yamal Peninsula, hiztoric pingos are common.
     
  10. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    30,994
    It's cold down there - you are expecting an updraft of very cold air rising up through much warmer air, due to a high concentration of methane in the cold air. I'm wondering about the actual calculation - it seems to me possible that methane could be building up to those concentrations in the first place because there is little circulation of the cold air from the bottom of such a hole.

    The entire process - "violent" eruption of rising ice, then the complete melting of an ice mass at least 80 meters in diameter and mostly still under the ground - seems like it would take a fairly long time, and the resulting hole would not be a sudden event. Also, while pingos are common holes like this apparently are not - where'd they all go?
     
  11. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

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    10,890
    1. Only one of the holes is recent, the other two are, IIRC at least a year old - I'll see if I can find the details when I get home from work.
    2. According to the article I posted the big hole is still 80% full of ice.
    3. I'll try to remember to post some images of similar pingos when I get home.
    4. If you look at the video footage you can clear see water draining back into the hole and the scouring it has caused.
     
  12. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    30,994
    And it's 70 meters deep. So what has melted to form it so far, the top 20%, was a mass of ice 80 meters wide by something like 15 meters deep, mostly insulated by very cold ground. It's only July, at discovery - can the Siberian sun melt down through 40 feet of ice at the bottom of a deep hole in a couple of months?
     
  13. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

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    10,890
    On what basis?

    I mean... Why are you assuming the hole was 100% filled with ice? I mean... Some of the volume of the hole was occupied by the soil cap... And then there's the question of groundwater at the base...

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  14. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

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    Here's an image of a Canadian Pingo:

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!


    Source

    And as for them occuring near similar features - take a look at the area on Google Earth...
     
  15. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    21,608
    Good article on this sort of alarmism from Science:
    ======================================
    'Arctic Armageddon' Needs More Science, Less Hype
    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/329/5992/620.full
    8/4/2014 2:41 PM

    . . .

    Tipping points for both methane hydrates and permafrost will come, Archer predicts—but they will probably happen slowly. It takes time, he notes, to get from an atmospheric warming driven by carbon dioxide to an amplifying warming driven by atmospheric methane. It takes time for the ocean to warm. It takes time for that warmth to penetrate into hydrates. And it takes quite a bit of that penetrating heat to melt hydrates.

    Once freed, the methane has to reach the atmosphere through the obvious obstacle of the overlying sediment. The ocean presents an impediment of its own. Bubbles may never reach the surface. Methane leaks out of bubbles, reacts with air dissolved in sea water, and becomes oxidized to form carbon dioxide. Even methane that reaches the atmosphere intact gets oxidized within about 10 years.

    Folding all of those processes into an admittedly still-crude model, Archer and his colleagues get a warming of about 0.5°C, whether the ultimate carbon dioxide warming is a very modest 2°C or an extreme 7°C. The catch i s that once the methane is converted into long-lived carbon dioxide, it prolongs that added warming for thousands of years.

    So to scientists, the methane threat looks less like a catastrophe than an aggravation of a problem that already scares them. But “media people are all the time trying to have a doomsday story” about methane, says Walter Anthony. Not that scientists are blameless. “Quite a few scientists have maybe exaggerated a bit,” Heimann acknowledges.

    “Is now the time to get frightened?” Archer asked rhetorically on the blog Real Climate (www.realclimate.org) in March. His answer: “No. CO2 is plenty to be frightened of, while methane is frosting on the cake. … Methane sells newspapers, but it's not the big story.”
     
  16. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    23,198
    I'm not rejecting anything. I only tend to believe what I read at Bloomberg. They concluded the experts had considered all alternatives which you named, including pingos, and that Methane played the central causing role. - I. e. was most consistent with the known facts.
    Perhaps they have older photos of the side with no surface indication of any thing unusual there?
     
  17. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    I'd like to read but not buy the article. Can you give a few quotes? Also I note you make no criticism of my facts and argument in post 903 explaining why:
    THIS TIME IS DIFFERENT"
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 5, 2014
  18. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    23,198
    Thanks. I now understand what you are suggesting so lets do the calculations.

    Moleculare weight of air is 98.97 and of CH4 it is 16. Thus the molecular weight of a 9.6% CH4 + 90.4% air mix is: 0.096x16 + 0.904x 28.97 = 27.725 so if down in the hole the temperature is 273K and at the surface the temperature is T, then also assuming the ideal gas law, for there to be net lift in the mix, 27.725 / 28.97 = 0.9570, the lighter molecular density lift must not by more than offset by the temperature contraction increase of the density, which is by the factor 273 / T.

    I. e. for 9.6% methane concentration to rise up out of the hole, 0.957 < 273 /T is required. Or T < 273/ 0.957 = 285.266K, which in more familiar units is 12.266C or ~54F. I.e. there should be methane laden air flowing up out of the hole, probably mainly in the center with 54F or colder air descending in an annulus around the column of methane enriched air. On the warmest Siberian days there will also be CH4 enriched air flowing up too, but the CH4 concentration will be higher then than the 9.6% then.

    This inflow of CH4 free air would of course reduce the concentration of CH4 in the hole so long as it continues, but a dynamic equilibrium would be reached with the CH4 inflow from the saturated thawing permafrost. The time scale for this dynamic "steady state" to be establish is certainly less than an hour. I.e. the observed 9.6% CH4 concentration was the steady state one when the temperature was about 54F.

    Thus by my analysis, I tell you that at the time the 9.6% CH4 was measured, the surface air temperature was ~54F which I think quite reasonable for Siberia at that latitude, in June or July when they measured the 9.6% CH4 concentration. Further more in winter the concentration will be much lower. I.e. the CH4 will be streaming up about as fast as it is being released by the permafrost.
    Yes. You are correct. That is exactly what I am expecting. What we have is sort of a "natural pump" driving CH4 up from deep in the tundra.

    Even more scary is that possibly this same natural pump is why CH4 is bubbling up fast in roughly circular olumns in the shallow Arctic Ocean in summer. Then wind mixing heat down not only helps the CH4 ice decompose as it raises the water temperature form it densest state temperature ~4C. During the cold winter night surface water cools to 4C and sinks within or around columns of the warmer than 4C water with actual bubbles of CH4 still in it being forced upward. Reason this is scary is than most believe these small bubbles have low terminal velocity of rise an will dissolve before they reach the surface. Fact is they are not doing so - I have given links showing them at the surface now occasionally in kilometer diameter columns. I. e. can anyone assure me that this "natural pump" does not operate in the ocean too so that the argument that CH4 bubble will dissolve before reaching the surface is ill- founded?

    The "beautiful theory" that they will not reach the surface but dissolve is nice and comforting, but would not be the first "beautiful theory" to be destroyed by "ugly observations." If you want to see these 'UGLY FACTS" for your self, watch the 3 second video here: http://www.theweathernetwork.com/ne...ubbling-up-from-the-arctic-ocean-floor/33078/
    an read the only days old text, apart of which is:
    "These hydrates are kept frozen by the extreme low temperature and crushing pressure at the bottom of the ocean, but with our oceans accumulating more heat all the time now, these hydrates could 'melt' and release the methane in gas form. If that were to happen, all that methane bubbling up to the ocean surface and into the atmosphere would likely result in the accelerated rate of climate change we're seeing now turning into catastrophic abrupt climate change."
    ... scientists have noted that the 'end' of the Gulf Stream in the Atlantic Ocean, which is a relatively warm 'tongue' of water that flows past northern Europe and through the Arctic Ocean towards East Siberia, may have been warming up in recent years. "Our SWERUS-C3 program is hypothesizing that this heating may lead to destabilization of upper portion of the slope methane hydrates," he wrote. "This may be what we now for the first time are observing." Does this mean that the disaster scenario is now developing? Unfortunately, at the moment, that's an unknown. "

    I have noted in several posts that in this regions sub's sonars no longer work in the patches of rising bubble clouds, but the never had this problem in WWII.
    THIS CH4 BUBBLING UP IN DENSE "CLOUDS" {despite the comforting, "beautiful theory"} IS NEW AND SCARY!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 6, 2014
  19. rpenner Fully Wired Valued Senior Member

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    4,833
    I suspect the natural process not akin to the buoyancy of balloons filled with a lighter-than-air mixture but a more gradual process of shuffling of the air column towards a state of temperature and gravitational equilibrium.

    Your point about the (originally ice-cold) methane being faster to rise in winter is noted, but then winter is when the melting rate of the permafrost is expected to go down or reverse, right?
     
  20. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Not true when one is speaking of the permafrost say more than 50 feet deep in the ground. At that depth or greater like the 200 foot deep hole leaking up CH4, I bet the average summer temperature is at most only 0.1C higher than it was the prior winter. I. e. think of the summers of 2012 and 2013's 5 degrees Celsius (9 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than normal air contacting the surface as a thermal step function pulse, the leading edge of which has not yet gone very deep. - Worse (faster decomposition of deep CH4 ice) is yet to come and there is nothing we can do about that.
     
  21. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    21,608
    OK. We have seen methane releases that were this fast before, and concentrations of CH4 have been thousands of times higher in the distant past - without a permanent BillyT-death-state. Spectacular (and paper-selling) descriptions of mile-wide plumes aside, the _actual_ rate of rise of CH4 is slowing down.
     
  22. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Yes the atmosphere was mainly CH4, back when green plants were starting to change it into an oxidizing atmosphere. So what. They were the only life on land then. I'll try to dig up the graph I have posted several times that goes back 600,000 years as I recall that gives the facts on CH4 concentrations thru several ice ages and add it here as additional proof that
    THIS TIME IS DIFFERENT.

    I do admit that while animals lived on earth volcanos did for a couple of years release CH4 at least at the present rate but what makes THIS TIME DIFFERENT is the release rate is not only historically high over decade or longer averaging periods but rapidly increasing via a couple of dozen positive feed back systems!

    You think of me as an "alarmists." I think of you as one of the most intelligent "ostrichs" with it head in the sand.
     
  23. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    21,608
    But see that's the thing. In actual fact it's not increasing rapidly. In fact the rate is slowing down. And in general facts trump doomsday theories.
     

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