Global Warming is Bunk
*** Added a sequel to this here ***
Global Warmingevery person in the civilized world has heard of this "theory" at one time or another. Every person has heard it bandied about in sometimes cataclysmic terms, pronouncements of global devastation for mankinds misuse and abuse of the planet "god" (no doubt a pantheistic god, certainly not a god who would dare make any sort of moral judgement) gave us. "Greenhouse gases," otherwise known as CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) CO2s; SUVs, refineries and the Bush Administration have this planet careening toward destruction. So goes the story of the "global warming alarmist" whose aim is to save us all from this fate.
Youve probably had this theory pounded into your head since Junior High school, mans over-industrialization of earth has upset the delicate environmental balance of this pristine planet and now were reaping what we sow. Man, as small and insignificant he is in this grand universe has somehow managed to pound nails into his own casket and unless we take extreme measures (such as adopting the environmental standards of some forest-covered "utopia" like Bhutan) were all going to witness The Day After Tomorrow in real time. Even the nut jobs at Move On admitted this movie is a little bit far-fetched (i.e. tornadoes running amuck in Downtown Lost Angeles) but the "threat" of global disaster still looms.
Most proponents of this nonsense attempt to put a scientific disguise on the "Global Warming" (hereafter GW) hypothesis to give it more credibility. However, the militant left has a greater goal in mind, getting big government involved and taking more control over your life. GW is more a political scheme than a scientific one, like a wolf wandering about in sheeps clothing. Better put, its the leftist-socialist sect declaring war on any and all capitalism. Youll frequently see pointy-headed intellects on talk shows watched my hundreds of people warning of the impending disaster if man continues to pollute the environment. Just as Hitlers minions did so well (no I am not comparing Hitler to the leftist GW proselytizers), if you tell someone something long enough and hard enough they start to believe it.
Every time any region of the U.S. (or the world for that matter) experiences abnormally high temperatures (especially during the winter season) or gets the brunt of a natural disaster, the GW alarmists go into high gear proclaiming the Bush Administration (or any other capitalist) is destroying the world with its lax environmental policies. However, the hard evidence for GW is paltry, if it exists at all.
I am NOT saying a given region of the world has failed to see its mean average temperature increase over a given period of time, nor am I saying we should build an oil refinery on every city block, what I am saying is GW is a theory void of any credible scientific evidence. GW alarmists tell us that our environmental abuse of "Mother Earth" will be a precursor to numerous environmental disasters and the such. Natural disasters (some minor, some major) have always occurred, and always will, no matter what Man does or doesnt do. Kyoto wont save us from any impending disaster, but it will save us from that dreaded monster dubbed, "Economic development."
Bill Brysons A Short History of Nearly Everything documents all kinds of natural disasters that occurred long before George W. Bush was born, long before the first SUV rolled off the assembly line, long before the first Wal-Mart was built, long before the environment-killing internal-combustion engine was thought of, and LONG before the first titmouse was crushed by an end loader moving dirt for a massive apartment complexbut I digress (liberals reading this will also appreciate that I referenced the paperback version of Brysons book so you can save money driving to your next protest).
Thinking that man can influence nature in a MAJOR way is sheer folly, pure and simple. For example, Washington State home to no less than six (correct me if I am wrong) oil refineries, Boeing, and numerous pulp mills, has a major pollutant problem. Its name is Mt. St. Helensyes, Mt. St. Helens is Washington states biggest polluter not one of its many oil refineries. This doesnt definitively prove GW is bunk, but as we move on, the accumulating evidence will render it null and void.
CO2 emissions are the main factor contributing to GW (or so were told) and these emissions are causing the globe to warm. However, the NCPA (National Center for Policy Analysis) tells us a different story. A subject we'll delve into later is the disparity between surface temperature readings and satellite temperature readingsand this is one of the focuses of the aforementioned article. Quoting the article in part:
"Proponents of global warming theory have long pointed to thermometer measurements at the Earth's surface as proof that the Earth is warming. Other scientists have pointed to balloon and satellite readings of temperatures in the Earth's lower atmosphere that show no significant warming. The scientists from the universities of Rochester and Virginia employed a new, independent way of determining the temperature, using historic meteorological climate data to construct temperature values for each grid cell of the Earth at an equivalent height of two meters. This analysis agreed with the satellite and balloon measurements, establishing that the disparity is close to the surface and mainly in the tropics."
They also go on to tell us that the models bandied about by GW proponents use to assert that greenhouse gases are causing the earth to warm and that effect increases the higher the altitude are false. Actual observations of the past 25 years show these models to be false and in contrast, the OPPOSITE occurred. Prof. Fred Singer, president of the Science & Environmental Policy Project closes by saying, "If the global climate is not warming, why all the fuss?... The whole issue of controlling CO2 emissions is moot."
The last statement to a GW proponent is akin to showing Dracula the cross. If theres no net effect of CO2 "pollution" on the global climate then their whole agenda just got quashed. Another after effect of CO2 pollution will be the melting of the Greenland ice sheet. This melting will fill the Atlantic with excess water and upset the North Atlantic Gulf Stream, which is responsible for circulating heat from the tropics to the North Pole. The so-called computer climate models of GW proponents are responsible for this hysteria. But is it likely? According to Professor Carl Wunsch of MIT it is not:
"Real questions exist about conceivable changes in the ocean circulation and its climate consequences. However, such discussions are not helped by hyperbole and alarmism. The occurrence of a climate state without the Gulf Stream any time soon -- within tens of millions of years -- has a probability of little more than zero . European readers should be reassured that the Gulf Stream's existence is a consequence of the large-scale wind system over the North Atlantic Ocean, and of the nature of fluid motions on a rotating planet. The only way to produce an ocean circulation without a Gulf Stream is either to turn off the wind system, or to stop the Earth's rotation, or both."
Poking another gaping hole in the GW hypothesis, Petr Chylek of the Los Alamos National Laboratory states concerning surface air temperatures (Climatic Change March 2004) in Greenland:
"The Greenland surface air temperature trends over the past 50 years do not show persistent warming, in contrast to global average surface air temperatures. The Greenland coastal stations temperature trends over the second half of the past century generally exhibit a cooling tendency with superimposed decadal scale oscillations related to the NAO [i.e., the dynamic of North Atlantic Oscillation atmospheric circulation]. At the Greenland ice sheet summit, the temperature record shows a decrease in the summer average temperature at the rate of about 2.2°C/decade, suggesting that the Greenland ice sheet at high elevations does not follow global warming trend either. A significant and rapid temperature increase was observed at all Greenland stations between 1920 and 1930. The average annual temperature rose between 2 and 4°C in less than ten years. Since the change in anthropogenic production of greenhouse gases at that time was considerably lower than today, this rapid temperature increase suggests a large natural variability of the regional climate." (Emphasis added)
In other words, the temperature variability in Greenland had absolutely NOTHING to do with human intervention. Lastly, studies concerning historical sea ice conditions round the Fram Strait, located NE of Greenland suggests that the annual export of ice through the Strait is "strongly correlated with the see-saw pattern of winter atmospheric circulation in the North Atlantic during the 1980-1990 interval called the North Atlantic Oscillation." Also observed and cited was the atmospheric wind flows responsibility for exportation of sea ice through the Strait for earlier intervals ca. 1930-1950 and 1840-1860.
This also poses a problem for GW proponents because theyre always citing a decreasing quantity of sea ice caused by GW. The fact is, North Atlantic sea ice simply redistributes itself and is in constant flux. Scientific observation tells us that climatic and environmental variables are "business as usual" for Greenland and not a product of greenhouse gases or the Bush Administration.
Buttressing the assessment that North Atlantic/Antarctic Sea Ice trends lend no help to the GW nuts (Watkins, A.B. and Simmonds, I. 2000. "Current trends in Antarctic sea ice: The 1990s impact on a short climatology," Journal of Climate 13: 4441-4451) 1 it was observed that there was a statistical INCREASE in area covered by sea ice and total sea ice extant 1987-1996. Moreover, in the 1990s the length of sea ice seasons increased, also running contradictory to the GW hypothesis.
Antarctica is a hot bed (no pun intended) for the whole GW scenario because (according to the GW models) a rise in mean temperature for the icy continent would result in a DECREASE in ice coverage which would in turn REDUCE cloud coverage at the highest latitudes and thus cause a greater rise in surface temperature via increased solar radiation. This implies that the highest latitudes would experience the greatest effects of GW. If youre looking for early-warning signs of a CO2-induced increase in global temperature and its effects on sea ice coverage, Antarctica is the logical place to start. Considering that the exact OPPOSITE has occurred in Antarctica, GW theorists have a major problem.
In yet another publication (Liu, J., Curry, J.A. and Martinson, D.G. 2004. "Interpretation of recent Antarctic sea ice variability. Geophysical Research Letters 31: 10.1029/2003GL018732) 1 the authors used sea ice concentration data from the Nimbus 7 satellite and the spatial sensor microwave/imager on several defense meteorological satellites to develop a quality-controlled history of Antarctic sea ice variability (remember the Chylek citation) during the solar cycle 1979-2002. During this time ENSO (El Nino Southern Oscillation) events were also observed (El Nino is also another "phenomenon" supposedly catalyzed by GW). Liu et al. report that the extent of Antarctic sea ice (grid boxes covering at least 15 % ice concentrations) has increased by 4,801km2/yr and the cumulative ocean area covered by at least 15 % ice concentrations has increased even more rapidly (13,295 km2/yr). The authors also note that areas of 15, 20 and 30 % ice concentrations (used to define the ice extent and area) are increasing as well and they exceed the 95 % confidence level.
So far the empirical evidence flies in the face of the GW hypothesis. Another article will provide further illumination into whether Antarctica is experiencing the effects of GW (Doran, P.T., Priscu, J.C., Lyons, W.B., Walsh, J.E., et al. 2002. "Antarctic climate cooling and terrestrial ecosystem response." Nature advance online publication, 1/13/2002 (DOI 10.1038/nature710). 1
Between 1986-2000 scientists measured a number of meteorological parameters in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica and found that it was cooling at a rate of 0.7 degrees C/decade. This rate of cooling is so drastic that it reflects yet a longer period of cooling extending back as far as 1966. This cooling occurred primarily in the summer and spring just as most of the 35-year cooling over the Antarctic continent as a whole! They also observed that the thickness of the ice on perpetually frozen lakes increased an average of 1 1/2 meters over this 14-year time frame. In contrast to the GW model, the organisms indigenous to the McMurdo Valleys suffered under the cooling temperatures, a warmer environment would actually assist them in this case. Yet the 1990s, according to the GW kooks was supposed to be one of the hottest in history! Tell that to those poor soil invertebrates living in the McMurdo Valleys. If the GW model was accurate we would see marked warming in the polar regions, yet this is not so.
In yet another series of observations 1 (Kwok, R. And Comiso J.C. 2002. "Spatial patterns of variability Antarctic surface temperature: Connections to the South Hemisphere Annular Mode and the Southern Oscillation." Geophysical Research Letters 29: 10.1029/2002GL015415), despite a warmer Antarctic Peninsula there has been "cooling at a number of weather stations on the coast and plateau of East and West Antarctica." The authors conclude (in agreement with the observations of Priscu, Lyons, Walsh et al.) that Antarctica as a whole has been cooling, not warming over the past 30 years. Again, this flies in the face of the GW hypothesis. One has to conclude that there is no positive climatological or scientific information for the GW hypothesis coming out of Antarctica.
Shifting gears, another favorite claim of the GW proponent is the adverse and extreme weather conditions well face under GW. With this claim, the GW proponent can still blame greenhouse gas emissions when we have an unusually cool summer for example. "GW has spawned adverse weather conditions, this is consistent with our model," theyll say or some gibberish akin to it. But is this true? If the globe (or a region, for example) is warming, then will temperature variability increase or decrease? Even if the mean average temperature increases will temperature variability as well?
M. Rebetez ("Changes in daily and nightly day-to-day temperature variability during the twentieth century for two stations in Switzerland. Theoretical and Applied Climatology 69: 13-21, 2001) 1 answers the question and it doesnt fit the GW model either. Rebetez analyzed the day-to-day variability of two temperature series documented in Switzerland from 1901-1999. These 2 sites had experienced a 1 1/2 and 1.2 degrees Centigrade increase in temperature, respectively. What occurred was a reduction in day-to-day temperature variability at both sites. The reduction in temperature variability was linked to a decrease in the number of cold days and nights. The author concluded, "[W]armer temperatures are accompanied by a general reduction of variability, both in daily temperature range and in the monthly day-to-day variability." Cooling, NOT warming brings on the drastic increases in temperature variability, contrary to the GW model.
In a cooling world youll see much more adverse weather than in a warming world. GW hypothesizers like GW to take credit for adverse weather conditions (even if it is an unusually cold winter) because the net effect of GW will cause this as well. The above demonstrates that to be false. Leftist nut cases are also quick to point out that "rampant" hurricane activity can be attributed to GW (and George W. Bush as well). However, as George Taylor, an Oregon State University climatologist points out, there is no link between GW and hurricane activity. The greatest amount of hurricane landfalls this century occurred in the 1940s (long before SUVs and significant amounts of those nasty greenhouse gases) and landfalls were also greater in the 1910s than the 90s. In fact, the 90s were a ho-hum "average" decade when compared to the rest of the century. This ably demonstrates the ability of the GW advocates to drum up hysteria when theres really nothing to get all excited about.
Buttressing an earlier point I made:
"[T]here is no reason to expect increases in hurricanes due to greenhouse warming. Climate models, for all their problems, are unanimous in at least one respect: they predict that most of the future warming will be in high latitudes, in the polar regions. This will reduce the north-south temperature gradient and make poleward transfer of heat less vigorous -- a task in which tropical storms play a major role. All other things being equal, a warmer world should have fewer, not more, hurricanes." (emphasis mine)
Dr. James O Brien, Director of the Center for Ocean-Atmospheric Prediction Studies at Florida State University agrees [speaking about the GW alarmists]:
- "Well, let me give them some due, OK? Their contention is that the ocean is warming up and if the ocean warms up, we should expect stronger storms, OK? Thats a reasonable theory... The problem is, what Ive also looked into, is that if you actually and they sort of believe that the sea water in the globe has warmed up about a half degree centigrade in the last 50 years or so. But whats amazing is if you actually looked at the trends in the Atlantic Ocean the region where hurricanes form from five north to 20 north from Africa over to the United States, its actually cooling down. So, I mean yes, there are hot spots in the globe which are warming up, but not in the Atlantic hurricane formation region. So, their theory doesnt really hold water... [Answering the question: Is there a cycle of hurricane activity?] Yes. There actually is. You know, for the Atlantic region, some scientists have very carefully gone back in time to 1851 and recorded all the hurricanes that hit the United States. Everybody should realize before about 1970, we didnt have adequate satellites. So hurricanes occurred in the Atlantic that nobody knew about and certainly, didnt have measurements on them. But every one that hit the United States, theres certainly newspaper or diaries or other information and so, all of these things have been recorded. If you take the strength of the hurricanes at landfall from 1851 to 2004 and plot it up, youll see this remarkable semi-periodic thing come out with about 15 years or so of many storms, strong storms and then 15 years or so with much reduced storms and then 15 years and it just keeps going like that over the 150 years we have records of. And so if you look at this long record, youll see that theres absolutely no evidence of any increase in strength. Of course, in the periods when we have a lot of storms, youre likely to have stronger storms; and in the periods where you have less storms, youre likely not to have strong storms."
An analysis of hurricane activity lends no help to the GW theory. Weve already heard from one MIT professor, lets call on another one--Richard Lindzen. In a scathing rebuke to GW alarmists, Lindzen states that proponents of GW have taken advantage of the publics "scientific illiteracy" (ala the musings of Sen. McCain) adding that the Arctic, "[I]s an extremely variable part of the world... Although there is melting going [on] now, there has been a lot of melting that went on in the 30s and then there was freezing. So by isolating a section ... they are essentially taking people's ignorance of the past."
Actually the evidence demonstrates that the Arctic is not melting but freezing and cooling, but Lindzens comments still correlate with a lot of what weve covered. Another stinging point of Lindzens was his disdain for the Kyoto Protocol (the Holy Grail of GW leftists), aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions to the 1990 level. As always is the case with the militant left, give them an inch and they will take a mile. Further reductions, according to Lindzen, will result in "a shutdown" of the economy.
Lindzens points about "alarmism" being the key are all too true. Hammer something into someones head long enough and some start to believe it. The little train can say, "I think I can, I think I can" all day long, but if there are not tracks hes not going anywhere. Say it all you want leftists, GW is a dud and the evidence to support it amounts to squat.
However, dont expect them to stop, even National Geographic (also check out this gem) got into the act proclaiming, "Scientists have determined that the ice in Greenland and the Arctic is melting so rapidly that much of it could be gone by the end of the century... The results could be catastrophic." The sky is falling chicken little! However, the latter piece is a little more truthful, admitting satellite photos werent available until 1978 and there may be more ice its just shifting to other areas. Contrary to all the unscientific delirium belched out by the mainstream press and pseudo-scientists like Kerry Emanual, there is no decrease in Arctic ice and no increase in hurricanes or natural disasters because of GW.
This hysteria is not new to the "mainstream media," (Time and others bought into this as well) in fact Newsweek (4/28/75) ran an article entitled "The Cooling World," written by Peter Gwynn. At the time scientists were worried that global cooling(!) was going to cripple the agriculture industry and cause global food shortages. Quoting the article:
"There are ominous signs that the Earths weather patterns have begun to change dramatically and that these changes may portend a drastic decline in food production with serious political implications for just about every nation on Earth. The drop in food output could begin quite soon, perhaps only 10 years from now... The evidence in support of these predictions has now begun to accumulate so massively that meteorologists are hard-pressed to keep up with it. In England, farmers have seen their growing season decline by about two weeks since 1950, with a resultant overall loss in grain production estimated at up to 100,000 tons annually. During the same time, the average temperature around the equator has risen by a fraction of a degree a fraction that in some areas can mean drought and desolation. Last April, in the most devastating outbreak of tornadoes ever recorded, 148 twisters killed more than 300 people and caused half a billion dollars' worth of damage in 13 U.S. states... A survey completed last year by Dr. Murray Mitchell of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reveals a drop of half a degree in average ground temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere between 1945 and 1968. According to George Kukla of Columbia University, satellite photos indicated a sudden, large increase in Northern Hemisphere snow cover in the winter of 1971-72. And a study released last month by two NOAA scientists notes that the amount of sunshine reaching the ground in the continental U.S. diminished by 1.3% between 1964 and 1972." (emphasis mine)
Does this sound familiar? If we dont lower CO2 emissions were going to have hurricanes in record numbers, the polar ice caps are going to melt, tsunamis are going to destroy everything, the ozone is going to disappear and Halliburton is going to put oil rigs in your back yard! We must act now before all is lost. As one can see, the most effective weapon of the GW hypothesizer is hysteria.
In a quasi-satirical article, Rich Galen pokes some more holes in the GW theory. I dont advocate some of his reasoning, because ONE cold winter doesnt cripple the GW theory, nor do I necessarily agree with some of the long ages assigned to "pre-historic events," but near the end of his piece he states:
"The special end-of-the-year issue [Discover Mag.] 100 Top Science Stories of 2004' awarded the Number One story to: global warming. Evidence of global warming became so overwhelming in 2004 that now the question is: What can we do about it? Deep in the article, Discover points out that Swiss researchers claim the summer of 2003 was the hottest in Europe since 1500. Wait. What? Since 1500? What was going on in 1500? Were oxen -- the SUVs of the age -- belching greenhouse gasses at an alarming rate? The Renaissance was in full bloom, but did Leonardo da Vinci code for global warming?"
Further crippling GW, CO2 Science Magazine has a section in every issue entitled, "Temperature Record of the Week." This section gives the data for the annual average mean temperature for a particular city (monitored from 1930 to present when greenhouse gases became prevalent) to see if it exhibited the effects of GW or not. The current issues (Vol. 8, No. 18; 5/4/05) "Temperature Record of the Week" focuses on Fairmont, Minnesota and the authors note the average annual mean temperature has cooled 0.44 degrees Fahrenheit. 2 See the preceding footnote for more useful information.
Lastly, some GW hypothesizers might object to the previous evidence and state, "Youre using surface air temperature readings which are usually discounted by people like you in favor of Satellite-based temperature readings. Arent you having your cake and eating it too?" Not by any means, the readings I listed on footnote # 2 are not "Urban Heat Islands" and more likely to be correct. 3 Even if I grant your objection (which I do not) these readings still show a decisive pattern of cooling which is contrary to your hypothesis. If you say its urbanization that causes GW then youre basically saying the very existence of the human race is responsible for GW. Lets all move to Bhutan and live in thatched huts.
Weather stations who arent in the shadow of these "Urban Heat Islands" are perfectly acceptable because CO2 (and all greenhouse gases) doesnt just "sit" in the area where its emitted, it spreads everywhere (after all it is getting all the way "up there" annihilating the Ozone).
In closing, the empirical scientific evidence indicates that global warming is nothing more than hysteria drummed up by socialist pinheads whose aim is to nullify any and all industrialization. The empirical evidence indicates 1) Antarctica as whole is cooling 2) Areas of sea ice concentration and overall sea ice coverage are increasing 3) Global Warming (if it was really occurring) would lessen temperature variability 4) Numerous temperature readings from 1930-present indicate a cooling pattern, not warming 5) Climatological conditions are cyclical, some decades experience a much higher annual average mean temperature than others, while some are much cooler. After all some of Switzerland experienced an annual average mean temperature increase while other areas of the world were different 6) A warming world would actually be fatal to hurricane activity 7) There is no scientific evidence to indicate a marked increase in hurricane landfall this century 8) Nature itself does far more to damage the Earth than Man ever could. Logical conclusion: Global Warming is BUNK! Have a nice day.
1 Summary and analysis of this article is available at www.co2science.org This site requires a subscription to view but youre allowed to view certain parts of the current and previous issues for free. If you have an account and you cant find a particular article Ill be more than happy to provide the URL.
2 Here I will reference the issue date, the town chronicled and its annual average mean temperature change (+-F). Vol. 8, No. 17: Allegan, MI, -2.5 degrees; Vol. 8, No. 16, Alexandria, LA, -1.16; Vol. 8, No. 15, Frankfort, KY, -2.77; Vol. 8, No. 14 (and so on to issue #1 of this volume), Cambridge City, IN, -1.73; Carlinville, IL, -1.39; Cambridge, ID, -0.6; Belle Plaine, IA, -1.03; Eastman, GA, -1.95; Bartow, FL, no net change; Canon City, CO, -1.7; Cedarville, CA, -2.13; Yuma, AZ, -0.27; Corning, AR, -0.8; Highland Home, AL, -1.98; Buffalo Bill, WY, -0.38; Spencer, WV, -2.86. Are we noticing a trend here? Get your sweaters out!
3 CO2 science defines an "Urban Heat Island" as "A region of warmer air temperature (relative to the surrounding countryside) in a metropolitan area. Urban heat islands have been documented to exist in cities with as few as a thousand inhabitants."