When Did Global Warming Stop?

Snowy treetops just after sunrise, February 10, 2011.  Image by author.
Snowy treetops just after sunrise, February 10, 2011. Image by author.

Has Global Warming Stopped?

As I write, the temperature outside my door reads 34 degrees Fahrenheit, belying the brilliant sunshine. But our forecast calls for up to an inch of snow tonight, and further West, they are already getting pounded with another in a seemingly endless series of winter storms. And I live in Atlanta, where the average maximum temperature for this time of year is 56 degrees!

So does this mean that global warming has stopped, and everything is OK, if only we remember to lay in a sufficient supply of wool sweaters, blankets and long underwear?

Early morning sun highlights snow on hawthorn branches, February 10, 2011. Photo by author.
Early morning sun highlights snow on hawthorn branches, February 10, 2011. Photo by author.

Well, some folks seem to think so. For example, a person styling him- or herself as “NorthernOnt” commented on a news forum:

Snowy yard, February 10, 2011.  Photo by author.
Snowy yard, February 10, 2011. Photo by author.

Poor AGW advocates. They are now in full damage control, trying to change the narrative they have controlled for the last 20 years. For years we have been bombarded with Global Warming causes mass droughts, melting ice and glaciers, sea level rise etc etc. Someone forgot to tell Mother Nature to co-operate. Now warming has ceased, there is flooding where none should be, places where snow and extreme cold are rare are now experiencing their 3rd year of such weather, etc etc. Only a fool or a paid lackey with vested interests in keeping the AGW charade going still believe in catastrophic Global Warming. All evidence points to a coming Ice Age, which is due anytime soon, and that is backed up by solid 100% real world historical data, not some BS computer models with programmers in the pay of the environmental movement.

Climate Action Day, Copenhagen, 2009.  Who knew these folks employ computer programmers?
Climate Action Day, Copenhagen, 2009. Who knew these folks employ computer programmers? | Source
"Milankovitch cycles"--natural orbital variations which primarily determine the timing of Ice Ages.
"Milankovitch cycles"--natural orbital variations which primarily determine the timing of Ice Ages. | Source

“All evidence points to a coming Ice Age, which is due anytime soon..."

I guess he thinks warming has stopped, all right.

You may be wondering what evidence supports the prediction of an Ice Age “soon.”

In one sense, so am I—at least, I am if “soon” means anything less than several thousand years. One notable scientific estimate—Berger and Loutre, 2002, in Science --puts the next glaciation 50,000 years in the future.

An 'erratic'--an isolated boulder, mineralogically out-of-place, that is the 'calling card' of glaciation past.  Image by Dr. Charles Nelson.
An 'erratic'--an isolated boulder, mineralogically out-of-place, that is the 'calling card' of glaciation past. Image by Dr. Charles Nelson. | Source
Popular Science's 1887 map of Ice Age North America.
Popular Science's 1887 map of Ice Age North America. | Source

In another sense, we can be considered to be in an Ice Age now—an intermittent Ice Age, characterized by periodic ‘interglacials.’  In this view, the current interglacial just happens to frame the development of human civilization as we know it.  You can’t get much sooner than ‘now!’

But is “Mother Nature” in fact ‘refusing to cooperate’?

Let’s take “NorthernOnt”—I’ll call him “Mr. NO,” for brevity—point by point. He cites AGW predictions of “mass drought, melting ice and glaciers, sea level rise.” What did we see in 2010—looking, of course, at “solid 100% real world historical data?”

Summer temperatures timeseries.  Image courtesy NOAA and the National Climate Data Center.  (A good source for "solid historical data.")
Summer temperatures timeseries. Image courtesy NOAA and the National Climate Data Center. (A good source for "solid historical data.") | Source

Droughts

Serious droughts occurred in China (first half of the year) and in Brazil; the latter drought is ongoing and extremely severe.  Drought in northern China continues, with significant impact on the global price of wheat. New Zealand experienced drought in 2010.  Eastern Australia emerged from multi-year drought, although Southwestern Australia’s ongoing drought continued with their driest year on record.  Multiyear drought also ended for Israel and Jordan late in 2010.

It was, overall, a wetter-than-average year, but “mass drought” was not in short supply.

Drought Images, 2001-2010

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Drought in South Australia, 2008.  Photo by Peripetus.NASA Earth Observatory satellite image of drought in Southern Russia, July 2010.  Average photosynthesis is coded cream; deeper tones show drought stress.  Above average photosynthesis would show in green.
Drought in South Australia, 2008.  Photo by Peripetus.
Drought in South Australia, 2008. Photo by Peripetus. | Source
NASA Earth Observatory satellite image of drought in Southern Russia, July 2010.  Average photosynthesis is coded cream; deeper tones show drought stress.  Above average photosynthesis would show in green.
NASA Earth Observatory satellite image of drought in Southern Russia, July 2010. Average photosynthesis is coded cream; deeper tones show drought stress. Above average photosynthesis would show in green. | Source

Melting Ice and Glaciers

Arctic sea ice experienced the third-lowest minimum extent ever in 2010, and several times set new records for lowest extent for those points in the year. Antarctic sea ice temporarily reversed a modest growth trend and is below average at present.

As to glaciers, I’m not aware of anyplace where 2010 summary data is available; it takes quite a while to compile glacier data, perhaps because the predominant methods of measuring mass loss involve actually going to the glacier, and it takes time to make and compile all the information. But the World Glacier Monitoring Service has a graph of glacier mass balance to 2009 now available. Since a picture is proverbially worth a thousand words, here’s the latest ‘picture’:

World Glacier Monitoring Service graph of global glacier mass balance.
World Glacier Monitoring Service graph of global glacier mass balance.

Enough said?

Sea Level Rise

Here’s the latest satellite data from the University of Colorado, which (rather oddly for a university in a landlocked state) is the primary institution monitoring Sea Level Rise:

University of Colorado graph of satellite sea level data.  Rise is due to both melting ice and the thermal expansion of warming ocean waters.
University of Colorado graph of satellite sea level data. Rise is due to both melting ice and the thermal expansion of warming ocean waters.

Well, what about the other three points, made a couple of sentences further on? Mr. NO said:

“. . . warming has ceased, there is flooding where none should be, places where snow and extreme cold are rare are now experiencing their 3rd year of such weather. . .”

As my lead paragraph indicates, I’ve got to give him something on point 3—where I live it is indeed unusually cool this winter, and the same was true last winter—though not the winter before. So there are clearly some places experiencing cool winter weather over the last two or three years. The question is, what does that mean, if anything?

Let’s come back to that later, and address the other two points first.

Flooding Where None Should Be

What, then, about the “flooding were none should be?” Well, that’s a tough one—because there isn’t anyplace flooding shouldn’t be. Search as you will, you will not find a climate scientist forbidding flooding anywhere. Period.

Poor Mr. NO may assume that predictions of drought in certain areas—Eastern Australia, perhaps?—mean no flooding. But that would only be true for droughts that were literally endless. By contrast, real world droughts, however bad, do break eventually.

And it may very well be terrible floods that break those droughts--as we saw in Queensland and Victoria in January of 2011.

NASA Earth Observatory image of the flooding around Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia, January 9, 2011.
NASA Earth Observatory image of the flooding around Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia, January 9, 2011. | Source
Woman trapped on car roof, Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, January 10, 2011.  Photo by Kingbob86.
Woman trapped on car roof, Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, January 10, 2011. Photo by Kingbob86. | Source

Warming Ceased. . .

All of which brings us back to the allegation that ‘warming has ceased.’  Before we look at whether or not we have evidence to support Mr. NO, let me note that he’s not the first to make the claim.

Henrik Svensmark, 2001.  Self-portrait.
Henrik Svensmark, 2001. Self-portrait. | Source

. . . in the mid-1990s?

For example, the scientist Dr. Henrik Svensmark wrote in 2009 that “In fact global warming has stopped and a cooling is beginning.”  He did not say just when the warming had stopped, but his reason for believing that Earth is cooling was decreasing Solar magnetic activity, which he noted he and his colleagues had been watching “with increasing concern, since it began to wane in the mid-1990s.”  So perhaps warming stopped in the mid-1990s?

. . . in 1998?

Well, that would be in accord with Dr. Bob Carter, who the UK Daily Telegraph describes as “a geologist at James Cook University, Queensland, engaged in paleoclimate research.” In his 2006 op-ed for the Telegraph, Dr. Carter said that warming “stopped in 1998,” describing the temperature graph from that year forward to 2006 as being in “stasis.”

So warming must have stopped in 1998.

Temperature trend, 1998-2006.  Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org
Temperature trend, 1998-2006. Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org

. . . in 2001?

Or you could take the opinion of David Whitehouse, who created a tempest in a teacup in 2007 by stating (you guessed it) that “global warming has ceased.” His grounds for saying so were that “The fact is that the global temperature of 2007 is statistically the same as 2006 as well as every year since 2001.”

So global warming stopped in 2001.

Temperature trend, 2001-2007.  Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org
Temperature trend, 2001-2007. Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org

. . . in 2002?

Then again, you could go by the word of renowned climate contrarian Viscount Christopher Monckton of Brenchley. He’s responsible for this graph showing that warming stopped in 2002:

Source

. . . in 2008?

There was another outbreak of ‘global warming cessation’ in 2008. 2007 had been an extremely warm year in terms of global temperature, inconveniently following on the heels of Drs. Carter and Whitehouse’s articles, and it was followed by a relatively cooler year in 2008.

In February, blogger Michael Asher rather breathlessly wrote in a dailytech.com post that “over the past year, anecdotal evidence for a cooling planet has exploded.” (I’m tempted to quip here about the advisability of trusting exploding evidence, but let’s move quickly on.) His headline? “Twelve-month long drop in world temperatures wipes out a century of warming.”

So we saw global warming not just stop, but actually ‘reverse’ itself in 2008.

(In essence, this is also the lode being mined by Viscount Monckton.)

Temperature trend for 2007.  Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org
Temperature trend for 2007. Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org

Wow!  What a shocking decline!

. . . in 2010?

Alas, the respite proved to be short-lived; 2009 was warmer than 2008, and 2010, as we have now learned, set numerous records for warmth.

All the global warming ‘wiped out’ in 2008 had returned, like a particularly nasty stain upon the carpet.

Not to worry. 2010 was warm, but that can only mean one thing:

An Ice Age is due anytime soon!

Ice Age Due?

Temperature trend, 2008 to time of writing.  Graph by author using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org
Temperature trend, 2008 to time of writing. Graph by author using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org

There's a name for this!

OK, I'm getting a little facetious. What we've been looking at in detail here is the fallacy called "cherry-picking"--basically, taking information out of context.

In statistics, this fallacy is often manifested by using too small a number of samples--in the case of global temperatures, too short a timeline. There are well-known tests that should be used to ensure that one doesn't use too small a sample size--tests you'd really think Drs. Carter and Whitehouse would be familiar with, and even the good Viscount of Brenchley.

What do temperature trends look like if you use a longer timeline, say the generally-accepted 30 year baseline?

Temperature trend, 1980-present.  Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org
Temperature trend, 1980-present. Graph by author, using online tool available at: http://www.woodfortrees.org

You can see two things in this graph.

First, the trend is consistently upward over the longer term. You can't tell just by looking at the graph, but standard criteria show that this trend is statistically significant, meaning that there is a very low probability that it could be due to chance.

Second, there are lots of upward and downward 'squiggles' along the way. By picking them out, you can make it look as if it's cooling--or warming!--at just about any point in time. But these 'cherry picks' have no value, if you are looking for the truth. They are only valuable if you want to support 'your' point in debate.

Case in point would be the downward squiggle at the end of graph. That's the 'cooling' we're experiencing right now. It's real--but almost certainly not meaningful. You'll find no shortage of folks claiming otherwise.

But just remember, their claims are only the latest in a series--and you now know why they are nearly sure to be wrong.

Or maybe it just stopped in my back yard?

Oh, yes, I promised earlier to consider one more thing: does the cold weather I personally experienced in December (and continue to experience into early February) mean anything in terms of how hot or cold the planet as a whole was?

"We are the world"--but how about my back yard?

As you can see in the photos below, there was enormous warming in my yard. (OK, this is the front, not the back!) Consider the rosemary shrub at 8 AM, and the sloppy street behind it. Then compare the appearance not two hours later:

Rosemary shrub, February 10, 2011, about 8 AM.  Photo by author.
Rosemary shrub, February 10, 2011, about 8 AM. Photo by author.
Rosemary shrub, February 10, 2011, about 11:30 AM.  Photo by author.
Rosemary shrub, February 10, 2011, about 11:30 AM. Photo by author.

Or take a wider view across the street. At 9, my neighbor's house and lawn are covered in snow. Before noon, both have melted dramatically.

Would I be justified in claiming that this somehow 'proves' the planet is warming?

Surely, such a claim would be met with derisive laughter. But it's little more foolish than many of the claims examined above. Really, it's just more obviously foolish.

View across street, about 9 AM, February 10, 2011.  Photo by author.
View across street, about 9 AM, February 10, 2011. Photo by author.
View across street, about 11:30 AM on February 10, 2011.  Photo by author.
View across street, about 11:30 AM on February 10, 2011. Photo by author.

No, looking at the graph below, my little patch of heaven--or at least, suburbia--doesn't say much about world temps. (Perhaps I should have said, “Mr. NO, not much?”)

My back yard was cold this morning. It was cold in December, too, like a lot of back yards in the eastern US--and in Northern Eurasia.

Temperature anomaly map for December, 2010.  Although large areas were colder than usual, still larger areas were warmer, for a slight warm anomaly--.37 C.  It was the coolest December since 2000.  Image courtesy National Climate Data Center.
Temperature anomaly map for December, 2010. Although large areas were colder than usual, still larger areas were warmer, for a slight warm anomaly--.37 C. It was the coolest December since 2000. Image courtesy National Climate Data Center. | Source

But that wasn't the case in the Canadian Arctic, or Africa, or Southeast Asia, or the Middle East. To get a sense of the whole, you need to look at the whole--or at least at a sufficiently representative sample.

Specific times and places can be examples. My yard this morning exemplifies a cold snap in a warming world.

Toowoomba on January 10--tragically!--exemplified the sort of intense flooding we may expect to see more frequently in a warming world.

But arguments from an overly-restricted context are examples, too: examples of misleading argumentation. I'm very much afraid we can also expect to see a great deal more of that in a warming world.

And disproportionately, it will be intended to mislead us into thinking that nothing is wrong.


Update--July 18, 2011

Well, sure enough, the 'cooling' noted above petered out, with May and June 2011 returning to temperatures more or less typical for the decade of the 00s--June, for instance, was the 10th-warmest June on record, .58 C above the baseline (NOAA data.)

We also had a couple more claims of global warming cessation:

1) Pat Michaels, a well-known denialist, wrote an online article for Forbes.com entitled "Why Hasn't The Earth Warmed In Nearly 15 Years?"--so, for him, warming seems to have stopped in 1996. Of course, the uncharitable might wish to point out that the headline conflates 'no warming' with 'warming that is not quite statistically significant,' which is really not the same thing. Or that every year since 1996 has been warmer than any year prior to 1996.

2) Steve Goddard, formerly associated with denialist blog Watt's Up With That, cast a blogvote for global warming having stopped in 2002, since there is a flat linear trend from that date to present. Ho hum.

His claim is examined by statistician 'Tamino' at this site--though you already know the basic answer, from having read this article:

http://tamino.wordpress.com/2011/07/16/trend-and-noise/

Update--January 30, 2012

David Rose, allegedly a journalist, wrote in the UK newspaper The Daily Mail that: "Based on readings from more than 30,000 measuring stations, the data was issued last week without fanfare by the Met Office and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit. It confirms that the rising trend in world temperatures ended in 1997."

I think we can conclude that this qualifies as an assertion that "Global warming ended in 1997."

It's unclear just what 'data' he is referring to, but the Met Office described his characterization as "entirely misleading." Given that of the 14 years in the HACRUT dataset since 1997, 11 were warmer than 1997, that does seem to be the case. (The exceptions were 1999, 2000, and 2008.)

It is true that, figuring from 1997 to the present, the warming trend is very small--.013 degrees C per decade, according to the woodfortrees website, which provides tools for anyone to perform a variety of climate-related analyses for themselves. This warming is not statistically significant.

Update--October 22, 2012

David Rose once again tries to misrepresent warming, based upon the new HadCRUt4 version. It's more of the same, and is ably deconstructed by Tamino (once again!):

http://tamino.wordpress.com/2012/10/21/temperature-analysis-by-david-rose-doesnt-smell-so-sweet/

Strange how Mr. Rose fails to report the demise of the idea that 'there's no statistically significant warming since 1995,' isn't it?

While I'm updating, perhaps it is worth mentioning the NCDC result for 2011:

This year tied 1997 as the 11th warmest year since records began in 1880. The annual global combined land and ocean surface temperature was 0.51°C (0.92°F) above the 20th century average of 13.9°C (57.0°F). This marks the 35th consecutive year, since 1976, that the yearly global temperature was above average. The warmest years on record were 2010 and 2005, which were 0.64°C (1.15°F) above average.

Climate nerds breathlessly await the numbers for 2012, which began on the cool side with the same La Nina that ended 2011, but has been warming pretty rapidly since toward the level of the warmest years in the record. With a weak El Nino forecast for the end of the year, will it make it?

Regardless, the long-term warming trend remains robust, and the elevated temperatures of the last decade remain the 'new normal.'

Update--August 29, 2015

Warming denialism has had little new to offer for some time; more effort seems to have been focussed on the supposed 'recovery' of Arctic sea ice in 2013 and 2014, following the stunning new record low minimum of 2012. (2015 is shaping up to be lower once again, though probably not a new record low.)

That does not mean that this form of denial has gone away, however; Viscount Monckton continues to insist that warming has stalled since January of 1997. He manages this by considering only one of five major temperature datasets; the others show quite considerable warming, particularly during the last two years or so.

For after a slightly cooler 2013, 2014 proved to be the warmest year in the thermometric record, and 2015 is virtually certain to smash that record handily. 12-month means ending this year have consistently been in the top 10 warmest such periods, and several have been warmest ever. And there is a strong El Nino at work, an influence which raises global temperatures somewhat. (It was an extremely strong El Nino in 1997-1998 which made that such a popular candidate period for the 'death of global warming.' 2010, too, was an El Nino year, albeit not quite as strong.) Its influence is expected to peak in the coming winter.

After that, we may expect some temporary cooling. Will denialist claims then heat up once again? They don't call them 'contrarians' for nothing.

Temperatures, January 1997-to date.  RSS (red & green) is satellite-based, like UAH, (warming at about 0.10 C per decade); NASA's GISTEMP and Britain's HadCRUT4 use thermometric instrument, showing warming at about 0.12 C and 0.08 C, respectively.
Temperatures, January 1997-to date. RSS (red & green) is satellite-based, like UAH, (warming at about 0.10 C per decade); NASA's GISTEMP and Britain's HadCRUT4 use thermometric instrument, showing warming at about 0.12 C and 0.08 C, respectively. | Source

Update--3/1/16

"Grow old along with me/The best is yet to be," wrote Romantic poet Robert Browning to his wife, Elizabeth Barrett Browning. And as global warming denialism ages, it, too, gets better and better--if, that is, one is speaking of comic value.

For the venerable Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), a UK-based denialist outfit, has just published a new statistical analysis. Its utterly amazing conclusion is that warming stopped in either 2002 (based on the HADCRUT instrumental data) or 1999 (based on the RSS satellite data). It's probably just a coincidence that the GWPF picked the instrumental data and satellite data that give the lowest rates of warming… right?


http://www.thegwpf.org/statistical-forecasting-how-fast-will-future-warming-be/

Segmented line analysis of HADRUT data, per GWPF

Note last line segment's beginning in 2002.
Note last line segment's beginning in 2002. | Source

Segmented line analysis of RSS data, per GWPF

Segmented line analysis for RSS, showing no warming from 1999.
Segmented line analysis for RSS, showing no warming from 1999. | Source

GWPF forecasts for HADCRUT

Two statistical models, applied to the HADCRUT data, show quite different predictions, albeit both with wide margins of error.
Two statistical models, applied to the HADCRUT data, show quite different predictions, albeit both with wide margins of error. | Source

It's pretty funny that the GWPF is predicting no warming based on statistical analyses that can't agree whether warming stopped in 1998 or 2002, and pretty funny that the two modeling techniques used deliver quite different forecasts, making not one, not two, but four different forecasts--all of which we are apparently supposed to take more seriously than anything that is based on, you know, physics.

However, funnier yet is the fact that the HADCRUT temperature had already exceeded the margins of error in the relevant analyses by the time the report was published!

HADCRUT monthly values, superimposed on GWPF graph.
HADCRUT monthly values, superimposed on GWPF graph. | Source

So, to sum up, this report is the first instance of a 'warming cessation' claim which:

  • can't actually decide when warming stopped
  • gives a margin of error as large (line segment) as the total observed warming to date, or larger (ARIMA model) on a five year forecast (!)
  • is pretty clearly contradicted by observations by the time it is published

No wonder some folks have given the GWPF the nickname "Gentlemen Who Prefer Fantasy."

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68 comments

J Bowers 5 years ago

Excellent, thanks. A very handy resource.


Damnedhammer profile image

Damnedhammer 5 years ago from Portland

One thing I think people overlook countless times when discussing climate change is that ever unknown variable X. It is the human factor. Our very presence here much less growing numbers is much more then how much CO2 we pump out. People are baffled by the fact that ice caps are melting yet where is all the water going? The sea level rise is not nearly what they said it would be if the ice caps melted. Has any one stopped to think that people are 80% water? I don't really believe in global warming myself. I prefer to think of it as global climate change. Yes it may get warmer here and there or every where, but we are also seeing dramatic drops in temperature in various places that balances the equation. I love the extent of detail you went into on this DOC. Keep up the informative hubs.


pitzele profile image

pitzele 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

I am somewhat speechless after reading your hub, as I have for years advocated recycling, etc. However, you have given me A LOT of material to mull over and contemplate. I am personally of the opinion that things will somehow equalize without our help. The world existed before we were here and did just fine.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks all, for checking out this Hub!

Damnedhammer, your point that what we do affects things is correct--if we choose to continue to alter the Earth's atmospheric composition, we will not like the result! However, I think you are just a bit confuse about Sea Level Rise--current sea level rise is roughly twice what is contributed by melting ice! (The remainder comes from the expansion of warming ocean water.) The much larger rises expected--say, a meter or more--will be arriving in our children's or even grandchildren's times, depending, once again, on what we choose to do.

pitzele, I guess I'm glad to affect you! Yes, the world will ultimately be fine no matter what we do.

But that is not enough for me--I want US to be OK, too! I think that it's quite possible that the 'equalization' you mention will involve severe harm to our civilization, economy, culture and well-being, unless we are able to take responsibility for our own actions--and that means we need to stop using the atmosphere as a dump for our combustion by-products.


pitzele profile image

pitzele 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

Actually, I meant that just as your graphs were showing both upward and downward (tending generally upward) spikes, history would bear the overall pattern. Although we have been experiencing a general warming, remember that there have been other "recorded" incidents of unusally warm (and cool!) decades before we formally started keeping records. I certainly do not feel that the earth and its atmosphere coming to a point of "equalization" will endanger its inhabitants. To the contrary, not only will we be able to adapt, but I think that we will flourish - as long humanity learns to properly respect and understand the time and conditions in which it lives. PS. I had seen a very interesting interview, I think it was with Matt Lauer, where he was talking to a physicist who was postulating that much of the severe weather is an after-effect of global warming - that is to say, a large increase in moisture in the atmosphere.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Two quick points (got to run!)

#1--Current warming is unique, in that CO2 levels have never been driven so high, so fast. Rapid change is much harder to adapt to.

#2--Yes, increasing specific humidity was been observed for about 20 years now, and is indeed likely to cause--even to be causing--increased precipitation, especially extreme precipitation events. And yes, that can be snow as well as rain.


pitzele profile image

pitzele 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

As to point #1, I hear you. If losing weight too rapidly can cause tremendous trouble, how much more so when the entire earth is changing too rapidly?

And as to point #2, we here on the East Coast have been getting HAMMERED the last few years.


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 5 years ago from London, UK

Thank you for such an extensive and informative hub.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

pitzele:

". . . we here on the East Coast have been getting HAMMERED. . ."

I in turn hear you on that! We had an entire week of school cancelled for snow, which is unheard of here. (Admittedly, it was an amount that would have been handled with aplomb in, say, Boston, but it's not too economical to keep a fleet of snowplows around Atlanta.)

"Hello, hello"--Thanks once again for stopping by! I'm delighted that you enjoyed this Hub!


MoniqueAttinger profile image

MoniqueAttinger 5 years ago from Georgetown, ON

Thanks for writing this, Doc Snow... Glad to read a cogently argued case the maintains the fact that global climate change is real - and just because you've got snow, that fact doesn't change!

I really must get writing again... ;-)


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks so much, Monique! It's great to hear from you again. And as for this:

"I really must get writing again..."

I say "YES, PLEASE!"


Kaydreein profile image

Kaydreein 5 years ago from Orangeburg SC

Brilliantly written hub, and a lot of effort put into this. I just wanted to add a brief commentary on the perception that more snow somehow = no global warming. The science behind that idea would have something different to say. The reason we have more snow in these recent years is because the large bodies of water that supply the snow are being warmed longer in the in warmer months, and staying warm longer in the winter months. This allows them to put more moisture into the atmosphere, which, in turn, allows for more possibility of snow when the temperature is right.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks for the good word, and the thoughtful comment. You are right about moister air leading to more precipitation--and there has been an observed upward trend in specific humidity for about twenty years now. (Not relative humidity, which is staying roughly constant.)

A recent example was Canada's Hudson Bay, which took maybe a month longer to freeze than has been historically the case. This was associated with huge warm anomalies in the eastern Canadian Arctic and Greenland--up to 20 degrees Celcius, about 35 degrees Fahrenheit. Things are closer to normal again now, but it was pretty remarkable, and remarkably long-lived, anomaly. Its significance is not yet clear.


Neven profile image

Neven 5 years ago from Bavaria, Germany

Thanks for this one, Doc!


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

A pleasure as always, Neven!


jacobsterling profile image

jacobsterling 5 years ago from New York

great hub Doc Snow..you really put a lot of effort on your hub.. i just hope people would stop deforestation, burning fossils, etc. so the global warming would really put into end. because many areas in the world are suffering with this global warming..anyway, thanks for sharing...Godspeed ^_^


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Amen to that, brother!

Thanks for the kind words, and take care!


hottopics profile image

hottopics 5 years ago from Texas

I think the real question is not when did it end, but when did it even start in the first place


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks for dropping by, hottopics.

Your question is a good one (though I have just the slightest suspicion it wasn't meant altogether in a straightforward way!) ;-)

Guy Callendar was pretty sure he'd detected an anthropogenic warming signal in 1938. (See my Hub on Callendar for details.) Most scientists think that he was probably mistaken in that--although to the best of my knowledge it's still an ongoing debate. Dr. Bill Ruddiman, on the other hand, thinks that there has been a human influence due to land use changes--subtle, but real--going back thousands of years. See his book:

http://press.princeton.edu/titles/8014.html

The IPCC's current official stance is that the warming we currently observe is "very likely" due to human influence; that's from the 2007 report.

However, my two answers are:

1) It's been warming since about 1910, though not without interruption, and

2) Consistent, anthropogenic warming took off around 1970.

Just my opinion, and, as I state in my profile, I'm a musician and educator, not a climate scientist. But this take is certainly what you see in the data:

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/service/global/globa...


fetty profile image

fetty 5 years ago from South Jersey

And amazing amount of research, presented in a useful and pleasant way. Awesome hub! I believe you have shown the complexities in coming to a conclusion about global warming. The last ice age ended about 10,000 years ago with no help from humans. Some say we've been warming ever since except for the brief "cold snap" like the one from 1350 to 1850 from which we may still be recovering.

To quote Harry Walker from Pitman . Do not consider climate changes from human activities as "laughable". " Condider this : " The fossil fuels we burn today - coal, oil and gas took Mother Nature 500 million years to make by taking carbon dioxide out of the air and turning it into algae, plants, trees and critters that ultimately became coal, crude oil and natural gas."

"Human activities will have consumed almost all of that at present consumption rates in about 500 years. About 300 billion tons of carbon dioxide are being released into the air every year from human activities. Every year!"

"What we know for sure is that atmospheric CO2 concentrations are steadily rising and our atmosphere is steadily warming. "


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks, fetty! I appreciate the praise (who wouldn't?) and perhaps even more the very thought-provoking quote.

As you say, it's true that many folks think the globe has been warming ever since the end of the last glaciation--but they're probably wrong to think that.

As best as we can reconstruct the temperature history (and it's very tough to do, to be sure), the temperature actually peaked about 8k years ago and has been trending downward for the last 4k. Well, until the last few decades, of course.

For example, see this graph:

http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:Holocene...


LRCBlogger profile image

LRCBlogger 5 years ago

Wow, I think this is one of the more thorough hubs I have seen on the subject. Good job. So it's chilly this morning so obviously there is no global warming. However, it will be about 6 degrees above normal today in the afternoon, SEE THERE IS GLOBAL WARMING, ha ha.

I give you a lot of credit for looking at the subject from an intelligent and subjective viewpoint. You rightly focus on 'climate change' rather than 'global warming' which is exactly what we should be examining. I often said that whether or not people believe in climate change, limiting pollution will limit greenhouse gases and a host of other toxins. It is always beneficial from a health standpoint to try and better our environment. In any case, I just want to say again, well done hub. I especially like how you demonstrate how short term statistics or a sample of statistics can be pulled to meet any narrative we want to believe.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks for the kind words, LRC. I especially appreciate that the humor came across; I generally do "thorough" much better than I do "funny!"

I agree with you about pollution generally. Some denialists make the claim that fighting climate change hurts the environment in other ways. But though it's true that almost anything humans do on a big scale has *some* environmental cost, still oil drilling and refining and coal mining and combustion are dirty businesses in both senses. Renewables, though not perfectly green, are still much cleaner over their whole lifecycle than the existing alternative.

I came across an interesting instance of how the environmmental cost of some renewables can decrease further over time: it seems Germany is now 'recycling' wind sites by replacing first-generation turbines with newer, more powerful models. They get more energy from an existing site, and save much of the cost of site preparation.


Sembj profile image

Sembj 5 years ago

Great Hub: Interestingly one scenario suggests all of the fresh water introduced into the North Atlantic by the melting North Pole will drive the Gulf Stream "under water" or to a lower depth because the cold fresh water is lighter than the sea water and will provide a thermal blanket to the Gulf Stream voiding much of its warming effects. Some believe that this scenario introduced the last ice age and an ice age can come quickly under the suggested scenario - 100 years is the figure that sticks in my mind. The UK would find itself mostly under ice as would Canada.

The theory was floated well over a decade ago and it may well have been refuted; however, it made sense at the time and still seems reasonable.

Well written and researched hub - thanks.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks, Sembj!

It sounds like you're thinking of the theories that Dr. 'Wally' Broecker put forth regarding possible effects of warming on the thermohaline circulation in the North Atlantic--they provided the seed for the movie "The Day After Tomorrow." (However, it sacrificed scientific accuracy for story-telling convenience, to the disgust of many scientists who justifiably feel that there are many possible storylines which still work dramatically, while playing less fast and loose with reality.)

I think his theories are still officially 'speculative'--possible, but unproven.

By the way, you can read more about Dr. Broecker here:

http://hubpages.com/literature/Climate-change-reso...


Sembj profile image

Sembj 5 years ago

Thanks for the link to the Broecker reference. Another testament to your obvious knowledge of a complex topic that most of us are poorly qualified to speak about with such authority. Certainly the rest of us should be a lot more knowledgeable than we are to try and make sure that our policies aren't in conflict with science and the facts.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

You're welcome--and thank you!


Theresa_Kennedy profile image

Theresa_Kennedy 5 years ago from Minnesota

Wow, such in-depth incredible research and valid argument in this one hub alone! I am bookmarking this for future discussions with my signigicant other who believes everything he hears on fox news. There's so much more I need to learn, and am grateful that I followed Sembj here.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Theresa, glad you could swing by to check it out!

This topic is complex--but not so complex that you can't figure out who is telling a consistent story, and who is 'debating.'


MoniqueAttinger profile image

MoniqueAttinger 5 years ago from Georgetown, ON

Hi, Doc Snow! This is a very complex topic...

I have another interesting book to suggest: it's called "Deep Future". The author is a paleoclimatologist and is looking at the effects of "climate change" and other human initiated changes in our world, and then extrapolating the effects out 100,000 years. There is an indication that we may have put off the next ice age by thousands of years with what humans are up to so far... Very intriguing ideas!


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Hi, Monique--great to hear from you again!

And thanks for the suggestion; it sounds intriguing. I believe that there was some information about the possible postponement of the next Ice Age in Dr. David Archer's "The Long Thaw," as well. (I did a Hub on it a while back, too.) It's rather amazing to think that our actions can affect something so grand.

But then the cyanobacteria affected the whole atmosphere, too, so we shouldn't feel too pumped up about our ability to do the same.


lime light power profile image

lime light power 5 years ago from NY NY

I think we can all agree at this point that it's not about "global warming" but "climate change"... different areas will be affect differently as the planet adjusts to a new climate "norm".


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks for coming by, L2P! I think that, on the whole, you're right that "climate change" is the preferred term, if we were to poll climate scientists.

However, for purposes of debunking a common denialist slogan, you must reference that slogan as it is formulated.


daskittlez69 profile image

daskittlez69 5 years ago from midwest

Thanks for the hub. Some of the graphs you showed really make you think. Thanks again and here is your up.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks, daskittle!

I'm looking forward to checking out your Hubs!


Rock_nj profile image

Rock_nj 5 years ago from New Jersey

Wow! That was quite a Hub. One of the best I've read on HubPages considering all the angles and providing useful information.

Where I live in the Northeast U.S., some global warming deniers try to ignorantly claim that the big snow storms we've had in recent years prove that the world is not warming. They wrongly believe that in a warmer world it will no longer snow. Nothing could be futher from the truth. It might be about 1.5F warmer than it was 150 years ago, but there are still plenty of winter days in which it is cold enough to snow. Only now with a warmer atmosphere the snowstorms have more moisture to work with, so we are getting bigger snowstorms (and rainstorms at other times of the year). More heat energy in means bigger wetter storms, but also drought in areas that the storms do not form.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks, Rock--and you are so right about the increased moisture in the atmosphere!

A lot of folks have not yet heard that some of the most important effects of climate change are those affecting the water cycle. You've just highlighted one of them: the trend toward increased precipitation, or at least increased "extreme precipitation." Another is the paradoxical tendency toward increased drought (similar to that suffered this year in much of the American Southwest, especially Texas and Oklahoma.)

And there's another possibility around the question of winter weather question (unproven, I hasten to add!) There are two studies now which suggest that the 'wild weather' seen in the last couple of Northern Hemisphere winters may be linked to the low sea ice extents which have become the "new normal." (Although it figures to be a short-lived normal, given the rate at which Arctic sea ice volumes are dropping: more and more scientists are saying that an ice-free Arctic summer is likely within a couple of decades or so. Just a few years ago, this wasn't expected before 2100.)


kerryg profile image

kerryg 5 years ago from USA

Great hub, Doc!

I think I missed the studies you mention in your latest comment about the possible link between low sea ice extents and the winter weirding we've seen lately. Do you happen to have the links on hand?


Rock_nj profile image

Rock_nj 5 years ago from New Jersey

kerryg,

From what I have read, global warming may be changing the pressure and wind patterns in the arctic regions of the Earth. This in turn may explain the recent arctic outbreaks in mid-latitude regions of the Earth during the winter months, as pressure and wind patters force arctic air out of the polar regions and into the mid-latitudes. This could very well be related to the low sea ice extents, as it is well known that changes in sea temperatures affect the wind and pressure patterns in the atmosphere (for example: El Nino and La Nina).


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

kerry, Rock, great comments--thank you!

In answer to kerry's request, I found this link:

http://nsidc.org/icelights/2011/04/05/what-is-the-...

It's a FAQ at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, so it's as official as it gets, and has a nice summary discussion. As I said above, this is a part of the science that is definitely NOT "settled" (whatever we may think of that loaded phrasese.)

It cites two papers--albeit only one of the two of which I was thinking! I know there's a Russian paper on this, and I'll try to track it down, too.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Here's the Russian paper I was thinking of:

http://eprints.ifm-geomar.de/8738/

As is so often the case, when you look at Google Scholar, you find that there is a great deal more research than you were aware of:

http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&q=sea+ice+...

A lot of effort is going into figuring out just what the reduced sea ice extent is doing and will do to our weather.

It's a good thing to do, but I wonder whether the research will be able to keep up with the reality: that is, will researchers have a relatively complete understanding of the relevant impacts such that prediction is possible *before* the sea ice is basically gone in September, allowing us to observe the effects directly?

It certainly looks as if that ice-free September is not that many years off--shocking, considering that in 2007 the IPCC predicted it by 2100 or so.


kerryg profile image

kerryg 5 years ago from USA

Thank you! Very interesting!

"It certainly looks as if that ice-free September is not that many years off--shocking, considering that in 2007 the IPCC predicted it by 2100 or so."

As someone who follows climate change news fairly closely, something that's been simultaneously frustrating and scary is how many people seem to believe that scientists are exaggerating the effects of climate change as a scare tactic, when in fact, if you compare their predictions with the actual observational evidence, scientists have overwhelmingly UNDERestimated the speed and violence of climate impacts.

Unfortunately, the rare exceptions (such as the stupid decimal mistake with the Himalayan glacier melt) seem to get all the press, and not graphs like this:

http://climatecrocks.com/2011/09/09/graph-of-the-d...

The sea ice is melting faster than almost all our models predicted. In fact, it's currently lower than some of the models predicted it would be in 2100! And unfortunately, that's just one of many examples. :(


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

So right, kerry. There is a tremendous disconnect between what most people (especially here in the US) think that the state of the scientific knowledge is, and what it really is--partly, I think, because it's hard to grasp just how big the field of climate science is, partly because of organized disinformation campaigns orchestrated by the likes of Senator Inhofe, Exxon and Massey Energy, and informed by the tactics (and sometimes funding sources) of the tobacco denial movement, and partly because who really *wants* to believe in a big, tough-to-deal-with danger to the well-being of our kids and our society? But there is both a lot more known, and a lot more to know, than most folks can imagine.

By the way, a great blog for anyone interested in following the Decline And Fall Of The Arctic Ice-Pack--corny humor is one of my mechanisms for coping with bad news--is this one:

http://neven1.typepad.com/


Michael Graves profile image

Michael Graves 5 years ago

I would like to take a moment to point out some very simple facts about climate change in general. First, global warming is a real phenomenon, and continues today. The reason that it may appear, at times, to have slowed (or even reversed) it's progress is that an increase in average global temperatures over time isn't the only impact of global warming, or other associated climate change phenomena.

Second, while we as humans are definitely a contributing factor to global warming and other climate change, some changes are inevitable, and completely natural. Irrespective of anything that we, as human beings, do, the climate changes... and will continue to change for as long as the earth itself physically exists. However, our actions can and do influence the direction and specific manifestations of climate change.

Last but not least, global warming is just ONE type of climatic change, of which several are operating at any given moment. A lot of the claims that "global warming has stopped" are the result of data that, at first glance, seems to support this belief. However, the effects of global warming may be comparatively diminished by other climatic changes at any given time.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks for taking the time to comment, Michael--and your points are cogent and well-made.

The message that temperature change is not the only consequence of what we are doing is not one that has, as yet, penetrated widely into public awareness--and since the hydrological changes predicted *and already being observed in some cases* are probably the ones with the biggest short-term disruptive impact, that's a problem. For example, a recent study documented that the long-predicted drying trend for the Middle East is a reality. (That's yet another obstacle in the way of peace, especially since water rights have long been an under-appreciated aspect of the conflict.)

And it's hard to say how much of the confusion is wilful when some folks, in one breath tell you that it's crazy for 'warmists' to think that only humans affect global climate, and in the next claim that an alleged 'pause' in warming means that steadily-increasing CO2 levels 'can't' be responsible--a claim that could only make sensse if CO2 *were* the only thing affecting the temps.

Here's a link to a story on the Middle East drought study message mentioned above:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/10/11102...


Michael Graves profile image

Michael Graves 5 years ago

Even if CO2 WERE the only thing affecting temperatures, human activities certainly aren't the only source of carbon emissions on this planet. I don't know, for instance, how much carbon gets pumped into the air when a volcano erupts, but my common sense tells me that it's rather a lot. We are not the sole cause of climate change, by any means... The real problem is that our activities are upsetting the natural patterns and rhythms of climate change, accelerating it in some areas, slowing it in others, and generally creating a lot of chaos on a global level.

People are so shortsighted. My region in the US just experienced a savage snow storm coupled with a thunderstorm with lightning in colors I have never seen in my life, which took out the entire power grid for days. And that's just one example of the crazy weather patterns which have been unleashed all over the world in the past few years. Earthquakes and other signs of seismic disruption are multiplying as well... I do not know for certain, but I would be willing to bet that our activities such as ceaseless mining, drilling, and of course, dropping bombs on people (which release a considerable amount of concussive force) certainly aren't helping that trend.

The problem is that we have a cultural myth as old as our first conscious thought (and by "we", I mean we, the global community) that the world, and everything in it, exists to serve our needs. Contrary to the popular belief that humans have some manifest destiny to eventually bring even nature itself under our control, the Earth is not an incubator for human life... it is a delicately balanced system that, eventually, will collapse. Irrespective of our own actions, the Earth, and all life on it, will eventually vanish. But while our species is here, it would behoove us to use our superior intelligence and science to nurture and protect it, to make it a safe and welcoming home for us and other forms of life for as long as possible.

Sorry for rambling on, and it is nice to meet you, Doc Snow.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

"Rambling on?" Not at all. It's pleasant to have a mini-conversation.

On the volcanoes question, they *can* release massive amounts of CO2--it's thought that ultra-huge volcanic eruptions in the past have been responsible for unleashing warming episodes via CO2 release. But normal volcanic emissions are much smaller than human emissions. See:

http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=2827&f...

"On average, human activities put out in just three to five days, the equivalent amount of carbon dioxide that volcanoes produce globally each year."


Michael Graves profile image

Michael Graves 5 years ago

Oh, absolutely. I am not trying to diminish humans as the primary agents of activities that lead to climate change... I am just pointing out that, no matter what we do, climate change will happen. The best we can do is try not to disrupt the natural process, and to prepare for those changes that DO come naturally as best we can. Again, great Hub, and I am glad that there are people out there exposing the environmental myth that "we don't impact things".


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 5 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Understood--it was just a Hermione Grainger moment--"Ooh, I know this one!"

Thanks again!


Bones288 4 years ago

Great article. One point in the comments:

"--up to 20 degrees Celcius, about 35 degrees Fahrenheit. Things are closer to normal again now, but it was pretty remarkable, and remarkably long-lived, anomaly. Its significance is not yet clear."

20C is about 68F . . . I think you may have meant to say 2C.

Again, fantastic article.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 4 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Bones, thank you for the kind words--and for the proofreading. But actually what I wrote is correct, since I wasn't talking about the temperature per se, but a temperature *anomaly.*

To put it another way, *the temperature* 20C is indeed 68F, just as you say--but I meant *a span of* 20 Celsius degrees, which is equivalent to a span of exactly 36 F.


Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 4 years ago

Outstanding Hub and good discussion in the comments on it. It might get a few people onto the right side of the climate fence.


Rock_nj profile image

Rock_nj 4 years ago from New Jersey

I did some research and wrote a Hub on the recent global temperature trends. Is it okay if I provide a link to people for further reading?

Has Global Warming Stopped?

The answer to the question “Has Global Warming Stopped?” can be answered both “yes” and “no”, based on the data sets analyzed and the length of time used for to compare global temperature changes.

http://hubpages.com/education/Has-Global-Warming-S...


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 4 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks, Ralph--I appreciate it. You were one of my first models here on Hubpages!

Go ahead and link, Rock--I appreciate that very tangible compliment. I look forward to reading your Hub!


Meiner 4 years ago

Unbelievable that a lot of people are STILL denying what seems obvious. I met this attitude only a few days ago when one of the hubbers in here left a comment at my own global warming hub, saying, that "sorry but there is NO EVIDENCE".

Great Hub, by the way.


Rock_nj profile image

Rock_nj 4 years ago from New Jersey

Meiner,

If you are referring to me, I said nothing of the sort that there is no evidence of global warming. There is a lot of evidence of global warming over the past 150 years. As I clearly demonstrate in my Hub, there is also considerable evidence that global warming has taken a breather over the past decade and appears in some data sets to have stopped. If you read my Hub, I attribute this recent lull in global warming to a longer than usual dip in the solar cycle in the second half of last decade and to a double-dip La-Nina at the same time. I also predicted that both of these would reverse by the middle of this decade and global warming would resume.

Look at the Global Land Temperature Index graph on this site http://www.columbia.edu/~mhs119/Temperature/ and tell me that it does not show global warming leveling off in recent years. It most certainly does. This site is Dr. James Hansen's site, who is a leading proponent of action against global warming. In a paper in Jan 2012, he conceeds that the chart mentioned above has what he calls a weak signature that global warming has stopped recently. I'd say it's not so weak, but let everyone be their own judge.


Meiner 4 years ago

I was NOT referring to you, Mr. Rock, so no problem!


Meiner 4 years ago

Check out my hub once more, and you'll find a very sceptical comment following your own!


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 4 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Yes, the intensity of denial--just how obvious the denied facts are--can be quite stunning on occasion.

Rock, your point sounds reasonable in general--though in model runs 'lulls' in warming of the length you are pointing to occur not infrequently, so it should be emphasized that there is no predictive significance to the relatively flat (though record warm) temperature curve of the last decade.

Thanks, both, for checking out my Hub!


Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 4 years ago

Anybody see the PBS programs on the effects of drought in Texas? A number of towns are running out of water thanks to huge decrease in rainfall and warmer temperatures. It was 82 today in Detroit which was a record high temperature for March 22. Flowers are blooming all over the place.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 4 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Didn't see that, but I've been reading about it. Mexico is taking it on the chin, too.

Due to a strong blocking high off the East coast, pretty much the whole eastern half of the continent is really baking. Saw an interesting map charting just how far out of the statistical norms the heatwave is--for a good swathe of the upper Midwest and Northeast, it's 5 standard deviations above normal. For us non-statistical types, that's apparently the equivalent of a once-in-four-thousand-some years event.

Or it would be, if climate change weren't 'loading the weather dice.'


MoniqueAttinger profile image

MoniqueAttinger 4 years ago from Georgetown, ON

Have to say, Doc Snow - Mother Nature is getting pretty schizophrenic due to climate change and atmospheric heating (which is not consistent across the planet, of course.) About 5 days ago, we hit a high here near Toronto of 26 degrees Celsius. Everything is in bloom. Then today, our "high" is -2 degrees Celsius (with a low tonight of -5). Here's hoping we don't lose our apples on our trees because the blossoms freeze!


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 4 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Yep. We're getting these blocking events--where a stationary high keeps weather systems in the same location for several days, perhaps a week or more--that can bring real extremes. For the US first three weeks of March, I read that new record highs were beating new record lows by the crazy ratio of 24-1! Very unusual--but then the high moved on, finally, and all of a sudden--seasonal temperatures, just when you've thoroughly forgotten what they were like!

There's some thought that these blocking highs could be more prevalent due to climate change, but I think the jury is still out on this notion.

Either way, though, the weather is kind of unsettling. Hope your blossoms survive--!


midnightbliss profile image

midnightbliss 4 years ago from Hermosa Beach

Great hub! Lots of useful information. I am amazed how many people seem uninformed or do not care about global warming. Thanks for bringing awareness to us all!


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 4 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

It is rather amazing, considering how much information is available in the media--and how much more that is available for anyone willing to spend a few minutes Googling. Too many, I fear, have gotten their information from sources that are deliberately feeding us all misinformation. (Perhaps I should have written "disinformation.")

Anyway, thanks for checking out my Hub. I'm so glad you found it useful!


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

I have never doubted the truth of global warming, and am dismayed by those voices that decry it in the media (mostly because of special interests that require the spread of disinformation for profit reasons). I am reminded of those people who insisted that Neil Armstrong did not actually walk on the moon in 1969, but it was all smoke and mirrors done with special effects filming, Hollywood style. There will always be those who do not believe in science, but most of those who speak out against global warming do so for monetary benefit and don't care what happens to future generations.

Voted Up+++

Jaye


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 4 years ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

Thanks, Jaye!

And it rather reminds me, too, of those just yesterday who, learning that unemployment had at last dropped below 8% concluded that the number crunchers must have been manipulated by the evil Obama clique. Hard to argue with folks like that.


Doc Snow profile image

Doc Snow 19 months ago from Atlanta metropolitan area, GA, USA Author

JPEnergy:

Sorry, but your question makes no sense. Maybe come back when you've had a bit more chance to work on your English?

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