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I have an argument with a climate change denier.

He says the raise of water vapor in atmosphere causes a "much larger" cooling effet by taking vaporisation heat from the ground than the heat generated by the additional greenhouse effet.

I say the additional greenhouse effect integrates with time, so after a certain time T (which I suspect "small"), this heat will compensate the latent heat taken from the ground.

Does anyone have a reference establishing the order of magnitude of T ?

Note the question is NOT about the "normal" water cycle where latent heat is taken at vaporisation and released at condensation, it is about the (undisputed) global augmentation of water vapor in the troposphere.

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  • $\begingroup$ There's no point in arguing with fools - they'll just drag you down to their level and beat you with experience. Ask him for his calculations. They'll fall apart on impact with the light of day. $\endgroup$ – EnergyNumbers Jan 12 at 20:29
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    $\begingroup$ water vapor(clouds)do both cool earth during the day by reflecting sunlight and heat earth at night by trapping and reflecting heat back to earth,what effect wins depend on the situation so it will be wrong to say clouds do warm earth or to say that clouds cool earth it is a combination of the two effects. $\endgroup$ – trond hansen Jan 13 at 5:55
  • $\begingroup$ This, and i still don't know what effect OP is actually after, so my remark aims at others stumbling over this question. Increasing water vapour in the atmopshere has an amplifying effect on warming, it does not cool. nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/vapor_warming.html and pnas.org/content/early/2014/07/23/… (sorry, paywalled). $\endgroup$ – ebv Jan 13 at 14:12

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