The climate instability problem

It is shown, based on the analysis of the physical behaviour of the terrestrial greenhouse effect, that the climate with an extensive liquid hydrosphere like that of Earth is physically unstable with respect to spontaneous transitions to either of the two stable but life-incompatible states, that of complete evaporation of the hydrosphere with global mean surface temperature higher than +400 oC and that of complete glaciation of the planet with temperature lower than −80 oC. The available paleodata testify for a stable maintenance of the values of global mean surface temperatures within the interval 5-25 oC during the last seven hundred million years. In the absence of a physical mechanism that could ensure such a stability, the observed sustainability of the life-compatible values of surface temperature can be only explained by accepting the existence of the biotic regulation of the global cycle of water (the major greenhouse gas on Earth) and surface temperature.

Web documents

On the occasion of Russia signing the Kyoto protocol: Climate warming or climate collapse?

Ancient carbon dioxide levels and positive climate feedbacks

Carbon dioxide and greenhouse effect on Mars

Book chapters (PDF)

V. G. Gorshkov, V. V. Gorshkov, A. M. Makarieva (2000) Biotic Regulation of the Environment: Key Issue of Global Change. Springer-Praxis Series in Environmental Sciences, 367 pp. Praxis: Chichester, Springer: Berlin.
Chapter 8. Unique nature of climate stability on Earth

V. G. Gorshkov (1995) Physical and Biological Bases of Life Stability. Man. Biota. Environment. Springer: Berlin.
Chapter 2. Solar Energy and Ordered Processes in Inanimate Nature


Makarieva A.M., Gorshkov V.G. (2007) A proposal on accounting for the non-radiative heat fluxes in the atmospheric transfer of thermal photons. Geophysical Research Abstracts, 9, 04919, SRef-ID: 1607-7962/gra/EGU2007-A-04919. Abstract. pdf

Gorshkov V.G., Makarieva A.M. (2002) Greenhouse effect dependence on atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse substances and the nature of climate stability on Earth. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions, 2, 289-337. Abstract. pdf Screen version (0.5 Mb).

Makarieva A.M., Gorshkov V.G., Pujol T. (2003) Height of convective layer in planetary atmospheres with condensable and non-condensable greenhouse substances. Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions, 3, 6701-6720. Abstract. pdf Screen version (0.3 Mb).

Makarieva A.M., Gorshkov V.G. (2001) The greenhouse effect and the stability of the global mean surface temperature. Doklady Earth Sciences, 377, 210-214. Abstract. pdf

Gorshkov V.G., Makarieva A.M. (2001) Diffusion of thermal photons in the atmosphere. pp. 141-142 in: Dakhno L.G. (Ed.) PNPI XXX (Petersburg Nuclear Physics Institute XXX-th Anniversary). Scientific Highlights. Theoretical Physics Division. PNPI, Gatchina, 145 pp., ISBN 5-86763-043-9. Abstract. pdf

Gorshkov V.G., Makarieva A.M. (2000) Environmental safety, climate stability and the non-perturbed biota. Global Change NewsLetter, 43, 24-25. Abstract. pdf