An Inconvenient Truth: Temperature Leads CO2

Peter Smith04 Nov, 2023 3 Min Read
“Climate-change” nuts are not the least bit concerned with data and facts.

Opened up the BBC website on 30 October to find this prominent news headlines: “Carbon emissions threaten 1.5C climate threshold sooner than thought – report.” It came replete with a handy reference to the upcoming COP 28 (in Dubai); just in case the interminable 28th in the series of climate hysteria global gabfests had understandably slipped out of mind. The report in question is published in a journal called Nature Climate Change, which claims to be “dedicated to publishing the most significant and cutting-edge research on the nature, underlying causes or impacts of global climate change..."

I read the report. It is indecipherable statistical bafflegab; judge for yourself if you have a few minutes to waste. Clearly, in my view, no non-tendentious journal would have published it. Fortunately, the BBC provided a key to the report’s finding that temperatures will rise more quickly than projected. Apparently, the authors believe that an anticipated decline in use of fossil fuels will reduce emitted particles which reflect back sunlight. Hoist by their own success as it were; as well as being a triumph of hope over experience. As it stands, the use of oil, coal and gas is ever rising apart from a small dip, since reversed, during the Covid hysteria. And the chance of its usage falling any time soon? Put it at zilch to zero.

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Came across another article, of better pedigree, published in September 2023: “On Hens, Eggs, Temperature and CO2: Causal Links in Earth’s Atmosphere.” Again wielding statistical (time-series) methods beyond my ken. On the other hand, everything seems sensible, not the least tendentious. Was this because it fitted my worldview? Maybe. We are creatures of our own predispositions. Nevertheless, the authors of the paper (Antonis Christofides, Demetris Koutsoyiannis, Christian Onof and Zbigniew W. Kundzewicz), all with impressive credentials (look them up), provide a plain English commentary -- “Causality and Climate” (in Watts Up With That?) -- and that's a good sign.

One pointer to a sensible theory is that you can explain it in a pub. Beware those who say believe us, it is all too complicated to explain to the common man. Academic shysters to a man and woman. This what Antonis Christofides et al., conclude:

(i) changes in CO₂ concentration have not been warming the planet; (ii) climate models do not reflect what the observational data tell us on this issue... Do climate models faithfully represent the causality direction found in the real world data?... The reply is clearly negative: the models suggest a causality direction opposite to the one found when the real measurements are used.

In a phrase, the authors find that rises in CO2 systematically lag rises in temperature. Ergo, absent time travel, they cannot be causing increases in temperature. An unknown third factor must be in play. As for rising CO2, it can be explained as a consequence of oceans warming. That is not a matter of contention. Warm water absorbs less CO2 from the air than does cold water.

Not the culprit.

Do I think the authors’ findings that CO2 leads temperature will change the world? Will the world now recognize that abandoning fossil fuels is without purpose? Self-harming? Civilization threatening? No, it won’t. Those who still think "settled science" is a contradiction in terms might think these latest findings are consequential enough to challenge the prevailing narrative. But I am reminded of the late Professor Bob Carter (1942-2016) telling me some fifteen years ago that he thought the tide had turned. It hadn’t. And this is Dr. Tim Ball (1938-2022) writing in 2016 in Human Caused Global Warming (p. 56):

The most important assumption of the AGW hypothesis was that an increase in CO2 would result in a temperature increase... Everyone now agrees that temperature change occurs before CO2. This juxtaposition is in complete contradiction to the major assumption of the AWG hypothesis and is the relationship in every record of any length, for any period.

Two things can be said. First there is nothing new under the sun. Ball preceded Christofides et al. And, no doubt, others too preceded Ball, in discovering that temperature leads CO2. Second, it matters not a whit. “Climate-change” influencers and potentates are not the least concerned with data and facts. They waft them away as you would an annoying insect. It’s called “climate-change” cultism for those who still harbor the delusion that open-minded inquiry and truth matter.

After a career in economics, banking and payment-systems management, Peter Smith now blogs on the topics of the day. He writes for Quadrant, Australia’s leading conservative online site and magazine. He has written Bad Economics, of which, he notes, there is much.


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4 comments on “An Inconvenient Truth: Temperature Leads CO2”

  1. If they have any evidence suggesting that the earth has ever had a static climate , now is the time to present it.

  2. Any idiot who thinks CO2 is a Pollutant is someone who must have watched Captain Planet when they were young

  3. In my opinion even discussing "climate-change" with CO2 as a data point is losing the fight before you start. Because the entire thing is just a premise (false) to enact top-down policies that are about power and wealth transfer, not the "climate". Talk about things that will affect the people and piss them off royally. Highlight who is getting rich and empowered and who is losing. CO2 debates are a waste of breath. Yes, the facts contradict the narratives. But what matters is the narratives because most people are oblivious, ignorant, or disinformed. Change the narratives, push emotional buttons, and get people angry and knowing they are being used and lied to. Correct, it's not about data and facts and never was. Use emotions like the left does, but in a way to actually empower the people against the global cabal.

  4. Ice core data demonstrated years ago that CO2 lags behind temperature increase. That was about two trillion dollars ago.

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