“The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority,” Marcus Aurelius opined, “but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.” An even worse fate would be to end up in minority status and an asylum. Recent developments suggest that this might become the destiny of climate change alarmists.
Now that NASA has corrected its US temperature records, the hottest year on record is no longer 1998, but 1934. Five of the ten hottest years since 1880 were between 1920 and 1940 – and the 15 hottest years since 1880 are spread across seven decades. This suggests natural variation, not a warming trend. Plant and insect remains found at the base of Greenland’s ice sheet indicate that, just 400,000 years ago, the island was blanketed in forests and basking in temperatures perhaps 27 degrees F warmer than today.
Land area temperatures in South America, Africa and Australia have declined slightly over the last few years. Since 1998, sea surface temperatures over much of the world have decreased slightly, while globally averaged atmospheric temperatures have shown no change.
Many US temperature gauges are near air-conditioning exhausts, hot asphalt and other heat sources. Their readings are thus too high and must be revised downward – along with claims about rising temperatures.
Over the past 650,000 years, global temperatures almost always rose or fell first – followed centuries later by changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, as warming oceans exhaled CO2 or cooling seas absorbed the gas. (This inconvenient fact is what Al Gore is referring to when he says the temperature-CO2 relationship “is actually very complicated.”)
More scientists are pointing to solar energy levels, cosmic rays and clouds as determinants of climate – and saying CO2 plays only a minor role. Thousands of scientists have questioned claims that humans are causing catastrophic climate change, and over the past year dozens have publicly switched from believers to skeptics about climate Armageddon theories. There is obviously no consensus on climate change.
Latvia and seven other eastern European countries are threatening legal action against EU decisions to restrict their emissions, as they work to grow their economies after decades of impoverishment under Communism. China and India refuse to sacrifice economic growth to concerns about climate chaos. China has surpassed the US as the world’s leading CO2 emitter – and EU carbon dioxide emissions have increased faster than those in the United States, where both population and economic growth have been substantially higher than in Western Europe.
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