The Norman Transcript

Opinion

March 30, 2014

Straightforward science shows continuing global warming

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

Robert McIntosh’s recent letter “Global warming: A shifting hypothesis” (published 3/23) oddly cites journalist’s interviews, articles and books as evidence that journalists are not doing their job reporting on global warming. More importantly, his conclusion based on the articles he cites is faulty, he misrepresents things they do say, and his overall premise is not supported by recent, ongoing science. Instead, he relies on old, tired clichés seemingly to support his own “predetermined theories.”

 The myth that it has not been warming for 15 years has been debunked more often than Obama’s Kenyan birth certificate. To be clear, global records of temperature document that the 2000’s were warmer than the 90’s, which where warmer than the 80’s, which were warmer than the 70’s.

Nine of the top ten warmest years on record have occurred since 2000. New methodologies that allow better coverage of the Arctic indicate that warming of the globe over the past decade IS statistically similar to the rate of rise of previous decades—thus there has been no “pause.” This is active science — and therefore should and will be further tested, but to say there is no evidence of warming over the last 15 years is simply false.

Also, his reference to the NASA study is completely out of context as the study refers to the magnitude of the feedback effect of water-vapor in the atmosphere, and does not at all address causation of recent temperature rise.

As was explicitly mentioned in one of the articles McIntosh cites, climate on the scale of decades can be altered through volcanic activity or the sun. However, as that same article notes—volcanic activity generally causes a temporary drop in temperature and variations in Sun’s intensity is well known and is NOT in line with recent warming—shown by a number of studies. Climate change has occurred in the past (my line of research) but most active scientists agree that increasing greenhouse gasses induced recent global warming—not the sun, or volcanoes, or lines of nefarious computer code.

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