Dedicated to the balanced discussion of global warming
Powerline is a very popular blog and forum for those that follow a conservative movement within the US. I am sure that their membership measure many multiples over this site. Therefore, I am hesitant to be too condemning of one of their recent posts but I need to talk about it a little bit.
To their credit, they encourage readers to go to the original sources to get the complete story but, frankly, that is not good enough. They have published the information in a way that is incredibly one-sided and is also not consistent from one chart to the next. That is the true problem with the article, one cannot see the filters or data sources in this presentation so the inconsistencies are too strong.
The first chart tries to show temperature swings of the last 12,000 years. The problem is that none of these previous highs (save one) show the temperature increasing, leveling off, and then increasing again. This is absolutely the situation in the latest bump above the line which implies that something may be different in this latest warming trend. Of course that difference could be the ways that the temperatures are gathered (with satellites today v. observing tree rings or other such proxies).
The second chart tries to ridicule the IPCC projections which are based on computer models (I give little credence to most computer models as regular readers know). However, did they bother to look at the major inconsistincies with the chart immediately above? The first chart is a straight line average starting and stopping at 15 degrees and the second is consistently increasing. What are the differences and why? While more in depth reading of both studies would likely give a clue as to the differences, showing both charts side-by-side raises huge skepticism in the quality of the data.
Also, why does the 2nd chart imply that historical average temperature was crossed at about 1960 but the first chart implies that it happened a few hundred years ago?
Then the 3rd chart shows temperature going down but that disagrees with the first chart where the final trend was going up and the second chart which has the average increasing on a regular pace. What gives?
I could go on and on but I think you have seen the point. The article stops being about the science that they rave about in the beginning of the piece and gravitates to a consistent whine that the IPCC is not fair and the US government administration should run away from its intended policies of climate crisis control.
I hope that future discussions of this are more about science and data. Let the conclusions come without filtering for agenda and political goals. It is frustrating to follow this topic so closely on this site only to be at the same basic point we were at when I first started this discussion. We simply need to let the science figure this out and THEN we can prescribe the medecine for what ails us. We cannot all agree if we have a cold, the flu, tuberculosis or liver cancer yet! But I do know all of this political maneuvering is giving me a headache.
I think I will just go take 2 aspirin and see if I feel better tomorrow.Tags: climate models, Greenhouse gas, IPCC, satellite, science, skeptic, temperature