Do airplane contrails add to climate change? Yes, and the problem is about to get worse

Discussion in 'Environment & Conservation' started by Josephwalker, Jul 28, 2019.

  1. Josephwalker

    Josephwalker Well-Known Member

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    This kind of goes along with another thread I started on this about clouds being a major part of climate change and this is yet another cause of more clouds but this one is man made. Interesting theory.

    "contrails do pose a threat. Scientists say they contribute to climate change by trapping heat that radiates upward from Earth’s surface. A new study published in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics suggests that the global warming effect will triple by 2050 as air travel grows in popularity and new technology enables planes to reach the higher cruising altitudes where contrails tend to form."

    "Many contrails last just a few minutes before the frozen water turns back into vapor and the plumes dissipate. Others persist in the atmosphere for more than 10 minutes, and some spread out to become cirrus clouds.

    These persistent contrails are believed to have a more significant effect on global temperatures.

    Another complication is that contrails can have both the heat-trapping warming effect and a separate cooling effect by reflecting light from the sun back into space. For example, contrails at night tend to have a warming effect, because they mainly trap heat coming from the Earth without reflecting any incoming sunlight."
    https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/amp/ncna1034521
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2019
  2. tecoyah

    tecoyah Well-Known Member

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    If you added up every single Contrail ever produced in history the effect would fade into insignificance by one volcanic event
     
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  3. Josephwalker

    Josephwalker Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like a reasonable assumption but it would be interesting to see actual numbers on that. 24-7-365 year after year of jet travel adds up and the article claims as newer jets fly higher the issue will increase.
     
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  4. Political Master

    Political Master Newly Registered

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    Made up of mostly ice crystals and water vapor....would be hard to quantify with the normal occurrence of same
     
  5. Josephwalker

    Josephwalker Well-Known Member

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    Cloud cover that causes is the issue so yeah it's kind of difficult to compare to volcanic activity which is really an entirely different subject.
     
  6. bringiton

    bringiton Well-Known Member

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    Contrails cool the earth. The heat they trap at night is a tiny fraction of the sunlight they reflect back out into space during the day because the inbound visible light energy flux from the sun during the day is orders of magnitude greater than the outbound IR energy flux at night.
     
  7. Josephwalker

    Josephwalker Well-Known Member

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    Write a paper on it. I'll give it a read.
     
  8. AFM

    AFM Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Contrails are clouds. There has been a lot of research done on the effects of clouds on the earth's heat balance. Cloud cover is one of the most uncertain factors in the determination of earth's heat balance:

    Lots more discussion and references to papers in sections 5.1 - 5.4.

    https://www.academia.edu/35571845/D...h_the_most_extensive_peer_reviewed_references
     
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  9. jay runner

    jay runner Well-Known Member

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    Good ole reliable high-energy combustion occurs in aircraft engines. Yup.

    On the news this morning they recommended planting trees. Yup. Simple. Reliable. Trees use up carbon dioxide.

    No international stupid treaties or taxes needed. That's all a scam that would make life worse for people.
     
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  10. AFM

    AFM Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    The earth is indeed turning green. Plants love what the left calls pollution.
     
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  11. Josephwalker

    Josephwalker Well-Known Member

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    Preface is really interesting and I will definitely attempt to read the whole thing in the very near future when I can sit quietly and not have any distractions.
     
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  12. Josephwalker

    Josephwalker Well-Known Member

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    The left seemingly prefers the LIA period which they use as a baseline and tout as "normal climate" in their charts and graphs.
     
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  13. AFM

    AFM Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    They try to explain climate by using the last ~ 70 years and ignoring the vast amount of natural history data specifically the current ~ 12,000 interglacial period (Holocene).
     
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  14. AFM

    AFM Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Our alarmist friends refuse to read it claiming it is funded by BIG OIL.
     
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  15. bringiton

    bringiton Well-Known Member

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    We don't even have to plant them. They seed themselves far more prolifically than we could ever plant them, and with the increase in CO2, large desert areas where trees have had difficulty because of low water availability are becoming forested. The leaf pore mechanism that plants use to get CO2 from the air makes their water needs sensitively dependent on CO2: the more CO2 in the air, the less water plants need to survive and grow.
    Right.
     
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  16. Josephwalker

    Josephwalker Well-Known Member

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    I've read that America's trees are spreading as areas once under agriculture fill back in with trees. Trees are almost like weeds in that if you leave ground alone they come back even if you don't want them to.
    When I was a very young man I worked one spring planting trees in clear cuts and then a couple years later I worked doing pre commercial thinning which is where you go into planted clear cuts that were large Christmas tree size by then to thin out the trees leaving the most desirable timber species that were planted and culling out the "weed trees" that grew in naturally and generally were bigger than the preferred species. The forest does quite well regenerating on its own with no help from man.
     
  17. Zorro

    Zorro Well-Known Member

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  18. Robert Urbanek

    Robert Urbanek Active Member

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    The contrails aren't the real problem; other emissions are. We should all hope for a reduction in air travel:

    there is no end in sight, even many decades out, to rapid growth in CO2 emissions from air travel and air freight . . . The IPCC has estimated that aviation is responsible for around 3.5 percent of anthropogenic climate change, a figure which includes both CO2 and non-CO2 induced effects.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_impact_of_aviation
     
  19. AFM

    AFM Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Global warming is net beneficial. There is no proof that human CO2 emissions have a significant effect on our current global warming rate. And there is no politically possible way to significantly reduce human CO2 emissions.
     
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  20. Robert Urbanek

    Robert Urbanek Active Member

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    What do you consider reliable sources to establish your opinions? And why do you consider them reliable?
     
  21. mamooth

    mamooth Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    The overwhelming evidence says the opposite, that we are long past the point where warming could have done net good. But then, you do have the opinion of one guy who said what you wanted to hear, so I guess that settles it, at least for you.

    Given the evidence, that's delusional. There are no "natural cycles" explanations for the observed data, so all such theories are wrong.

    Plus, you're just tossing everything at the wall now in the hopes something sticks. If you had a single valid point, you wouldn't have to do that.

    You're tossing everything at the wall, in the hopes something sticks. If you had a single valid argument, you wouldn't have to do that.

    Nope. As usual, you've been fed outdated junk science. There was a greening period from about 1980-1997, but it's over now. The greening has now leveled off or started declining. Further CO2 fertilization is not having any greening effect. I'm guessing your economist failed to account for that, and instead made rosy assumptions about greening that isn't happening.

    What's more, much of the greening that did happen is not beneficial, specifically the greening in the Arctic. The Sahel is about the only spot seeing beneficial greening. For the rest of the world, it was a negative.

    [​IMG]
     
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  22. mamooth

    mamooth Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Junk discussion, as its premise is "uncertainty is large", but then it just assumes the uncertainty will go in the "less warming" direction. Being how any uncertainty is just as likely to be in the "more warming" direction, it's not honest to say "more uncertainty means warming is no problem."
     
  23. AFM

    AFM Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    The consensus of economic models which properly consider the benefits of global warming indicate that global warming is beneficial for at least the next 3 deg C warming which will take at least 100 years. You have the references.

    What evidence ?? The current warming is no different from the 9 previous Holocene warming periods.

    Tell us all how to significantly reduce the global CO2 emissions. Democracies would vote politicians who favored these policies out of office and totalitarian states would never sacrifice economic growth.

    What does plant growth measurements have to do with greening of the earth ?? Greening of the arctic ?? The arctic ice cap is a huge ice berg. You are saying that plants are growing on it ??
     
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  24. AFM

    AFM Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    More warming is not a problem, it is beneficial.

    Read the book - it's free.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2019
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  25. Moonglow

    Moonglow Well-Known Member

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    We will be outlawing those also...
     

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