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To: wideminded
What property of CO2 allows it to heat the atmosphere beyond the heating it receives from the sun?

The ability of CO2 to absorb and emit infrared radiation while transmitting visible light.

Actually, the fluorescence of CO2 within the IR portion of the spectrum is absolutely meaningless. If you understand fluorescence, then you know that the wavelengths at which light is absorbed and reemitted are completely irrelevant, and the only relevant fact here is that the energy difference between the two wavelengths is emitted as heat (or IR). Since fluorescence occurring within any portion of the spectrum always produces a small amount of heat, the fact that it also does so within the IR portion of the spectrum is meaningless. All gases--indeed, all materials--have fluorescence spectra; therefore, the behavior of CO2 in this regard is indistinguishable from any other gas. In any case, no fluorescence occurs without an external energy source, and the heat produced is a tiny fraction of the total energy input.

since it has this amazing heating ability (by which it creates energy that wasn’t there

No one is claiming that CO2 creates energy that wasn't there.

If you take the proponents of human caused global warming at face value, then you have to conclude that they ARE saying that CO2 increases the total energy of the atmosphere. Otherwise, the only energy in the system is that which the sun provides; once that conclusion is reached, the whole idea that it is human caused becomes invalidated.

27 posted on 08/14/2010 11:31:48 PM PDT by exDemMom (Now that I've finally accepted that I'm living a bad hair life, I'm more at peace with the world.)
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To: exDemMom
What property of CO2 allows it to heat the atmosphere beyond the heating it receives from the sun?

The ability of CO2 to absorb and emit infrared radiation while transmitting visible light.

Actually, the fluorescence of CO2 within the IR portion of the spectrum is absolutely meaningless. If you understand fluorescence,...

The central proposed mechanism by which carbon dioxide is supposed to produce the greenhouse effect does not involve fluorescence. There are some other errors you make in this same paragraph. If you are going to criticize a theory, you have to at least understand what it is.

By the way, I am not claiming AGW is a measurable effect, just that you don't know what the theory really says.

No one is claiming that CO2 creates energy that wasn't there.

If you take the proponents of human caused global warming at face value, then you have to conclude that they ARE saying that CO2 increases the total energy of the atmosphere.

That's right, but they don't claim that the energy comes from nowhere, just that more of the sun's energy is stored in the atmosphere until it reaches equilibrium at a higher temperature. The greenhouse effect has to do with the balance between energy coming from the sun and energy re-radiated back into space from the earth.

Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, like other greenhouse gases, supposedly reflects some of the infrared radiation coming from the earth back down again. Since this role of carbon dioxide does not involve a change of wavelength, it is not a fluorescence phenomenon. The only change of wavelength in the theory is that the visible light from the sun heats the earth and this results in infrared radiation back towards space.

29 posted on 08/15/2010 1:41:48 AM PDT by wideminded
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