Climate Thermostat Making Earth Habitable - Ditlevsen

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In summary, the article discusses the climatic thermostat that helps maintain a habitable temperature on Earth. The surface temperature is determined by a balance between incoming solar radiation and outgoing atmospheric radiation, with greenhouse warming causing the surface temperature to be higher than the black-body temperature. This results in two stable climate states: a cold state with a completely ice-covered planet and a warm state similar to our current climate. The warm state has been dominant in Earth's history, despite a 30% fainter sun in the past. The article also mentions the possible role of a greenhouse thermostat controlled by temperature changes in the weathering process, allowing life to evolve on Earth. The conversation then shifts to discussing the global warming myth and the author's project reviewing abstracts
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Title: A climatic thermostat making Earth habitable
Authors: Peter D. Ditlevsen
Comments: 4 figures, Proceedings, NORDITA conf. Astrobiology 2004

The mean surface temperature on Earth and other planets with atmospheres is determined by the radiative balance between the non-reflected incoming solar radiation and the outgoing long-wave black-body radiation from the atmosphere. The surface temperature is higher than the black-body temperature due to the greenhouse warming. Balancing the ice-albedo cooling and the greenhouse warming gives rise to two stable climate states. A cold climate state with a completelyice-covered planet, called Snowball Earth, and a warm state similar to our present climate where greenhouse warming prevents the total glacition. The warm state has dominated Earth in most of its geological history despite a 30 % fainter young Sun. The warming could have been controlled by a greenhouse thermostat operating by temperature control of the weathering process depleting the atmosphere from $CO_2$. This temperature control has permitted life to evolve as early as the end of the heavy bombartment 4 billion years ago.
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  • #2
Yes those two states. Greenhouse - Ice house with a lot of positive feedback forcing the climate either cool or warm, nothing in between, a flip flop.

It's also projected on the Pleistocene and it's the root of the global warming myth. Here is an excellent overview how that myth was born:

or is this off thread?

Anyway, when I had discovered this, some suggestions came that I may well had discovered the flawed roots of that global warming discovery sequence. So I decided to start the mega project. I'm in the process of reviewing all abstracts under and that contain the string "Younger Dryas" for datable warm-cold indications, glacier advances and retreats and of course arid-humid changes. 200 abstracts down, some 300 to go.

Extremely interesting result.
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  • #3
Hi andre.

I found the remark about a, 30% fainter sun quite remarkable.

You must love your work :smile:
  • #4
Well with CO2 up 20-33 times the current values there would be some compensation for the fainter sun. But the greenhouse ice house idea s highly disputable. It's just what you want to see. Tectonics push the continents all over the planet in rom 200 million years AFAIK. Everytime when a continent passes a pole, it produces an ice sheet. One of the mass extinctions in the past may be attributed to the supercontinent Pangea, passing the south pole at the end of the Permian and created massive ice sheets and the remains of those can be found back at the equator. But that doesn't mean that there was a snow ball world. But that had nothing to with those flip flop ideas..

You must love your work

Work? It's a hobby.

1. How does the climate thermostat work?

The climate thermostat theory proposed by Ditlevsen suggests that the Earth's climate is regulated by negative feedback loops, meaning that when the temperature increases due to factors such as increased greenhouse gas emissions, the Earth's natural systems work to counteract the change and bring the temperature back to a stable level.

2. What factors contribute to the Earth's habitability?

The Earth's habitability is largely influenced by its distance from the sun, the presence of water, and the composition of its atmosphere. Other factors such as the Earth's magnetic field and its tilt on its axis also play a role in maintaining a habitable climate.

3. How does the climate thermostat theory explain past climate changes?

The climate thermostat theory can help explain past climate changes by showing how the Earth's natural systems have responded to external factors such as changes in solar radiation or volcanic activity. This theory suggests that the Earth's climate has remained relatively stable over time due to these negative feedback loops.

4. Can the climate thermostat theory be used to predict future climate change?

While the climate thermostat theory provides a valuable framework for understanding the Earth's climate, it is not a predictive tool. Climate change is a complex and multi-faceted issue, and the Earth's systems may not always be able to fully compensate for human-induced changes.

5. What implications does the climate thermostat theory have for addressing climate change?

The climate thermostat theory highlights the importance of understanding and preserving the Earth's natural systems in order to maintain a habitable climate. It also suggests that human actions can have a significant impact on the Earth's climate and that it is important to consider the long-term consequences of our actions on the planet.

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