Crusade Against Science Ignores Threat Of Global Warming
A leader for NASA’s Aqua Satellite, Dr. Roy Spencer, has just published a report indicating that his studies of cloud surface temperatures proves that carbon dioxide is not the cause of global warming.
The problem with the study, according to Stephanie Pappas, the Senior Writer of LiveScience, is that this argument been proposed before and torn down by climate scientists around the world. Moreover, it also “finds a mismatch between the month-to-month variations in temperature and cloud cover in models versus the real world over the past 10 years,” according Gavin Schmidt, a NASA Goddard climatologist. “What this mismatch is due to — data processing, errors in the data or real problems in the models — is completely unclear.”
There are also other flaws, “including an ‘unrealistic’ model placing clouds as the driver of warming and a lack of information about the statistical significance of the temperatures observed by the satellites.”
“Several researchers expressed frustration that the study was attracting media attention. ‘If you want to do a story then write one pointing to the ridiculousness of people jumping onto every random press release as if well-established science gets dismissed on a dime,’ Schmidt said. ‘Climate sensitivity is not constrained by the last two decades of imperfect satellite data, but rather the paleoclimate record.’”
Established scientists have, over the past several decades, compounded report upon report with strong evidence that the recent devastating spike in global warming is not just an illusion. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), is an international body created by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to “provide the world with a clear scientific view on the current state of knowledge in climate change and its potential environmental and socio-economic impacts.” After assessing and reviewing countless reports from scientists all over the world, the IPCC notes that “scientific evidence for warming of the climate system is unequivocal.” Their evidence?
In a brief summary: Ice sheets have shrunk and glaciers are retreating. Ocean temperatures and sea levels have risen. The acidity of ocean water has increased dramatically over the last century due to elevated carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. Precipitation patterns have changed. Global temperatures have risen.
A guide compiled by ThinkProgress includes summaries of the most significant reports on climate science. They include reports by the IPCC. Some of the most meaningful data presented by the reports are the following: levels of carbon dioxide in the world are the highest they have been in 15 million years; the oceans are acidifying ten times faster today than 55 million years ago when a mass extinction of marine species occurred; and temperatures on land have risen to the highest they have ever been on record.
Human activities have been proven to cause and aggravate this accelerated global warming. Since the Industrial Revolution, the use of “fossil fuels such as coal, natural gas, and oil to power our cars, factories, power plants, homes, offices, and schools,” have created additional greenhouse gases, enhancing “the natural greenhouse effect by adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, very likely causing the Earth’s average temperature to rise,” according to the EPA. The IPCC has reported that there is a 90% probability that humans are responsible.
The warming of the globe has devastating consequences. The changes in the environment will result in changes in animal populations, including a loss of biodiversity and extinction. This is true of ocean life as well, where there have already been reports of human activity damaging the health of the ocean.
Rising temperatures in the ocean will result in a greater probability of hurricanes, tsunamis, and floods.
Warm climates are more vulnerable to deadly diseases, and in such climates those diseases are more difficult to eradicate. The EPA reports:
“Throughout the world, the prevalence of some diseases and other threats to human health depend largely on local climate. Extreme temperatures can lead directly to loss of life, while climate-related disturbances in ecological systems, such as changes in the range of infective parasites, can indirectly impact the incidence of serious infectious diseases. In addition, warm temperatures can increase air and water pollution, which in turn harm human health.”
Increased temperatures on land mean more droughts and heat waves. This can result in more wildfires by increasing the probability of wildfires in areas already susceptible, and creating new such areas. Droughts, heat waves, and floods all contribute negatively to food production – and other “changes in climate, water supply and soil moisture could make it less feasible to continue crop production in certain regions.” An IPCC report stated:
“Recent studies indicate that increased frequency of heat stress, droughts and floods negatively affect crop yields and livestock beyond the impacts of mean climate change, creating the possibility for surprises, with impacts that are larger, and occurring earlier, than predicted using changes in mean variables alone. This is especially the case for subsistence sectors at low latitudes. Climate variability and change also modify the risks of fires, pest and pathogen outbreaks, negatively affecting food, fiber and forestry.”
All of the above scenarios have economic and human consequences that could be prevented, if environmental regulations were put in place to prevent human activity from further aggravating global warming and climate change. Preventative measures such as regulating emissions of carbon dioxide and other harmful pollutants, and enforcing measures of cleanup of such emissions by the owners of factories and plants; funding research into green energy and beginning the process of replacing dirty energy with clean energy – solar and wind power, are just some examples.
But many people do not wish for the government to be given these powers, claiming that it interferes too much in their lives. "By this point, the debate over climate policy has nothing to do with science…It’s essentially a debate over the role of government,” said Andrew Dessler, a professor of atmospheric sciences at Texas A&M University.
Specifically, the role of government in the United States. Countries around the world, especially in Europe and Asia, have taken the initiative in cutting their greenhouse gas emissions, recognizing that environmentalism is a sound policy. In 1997, in Kyoto, Japan, an international conference was held at which most countries signed an international treaty called the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC). An addition to the treaty, the Kyoto Protocol, gave it more powerful and legally binding measures. Countries involved in the treaty are bound to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in their country. The United States is not a part of it.
Most developed countries are leading the way in green energy and environmentally friendly government policies. They are thinking of the lives of future generations when they consider global warming to be a real threat, and are doing what they can to alleviate it. Why isn’t the United States following?
This is an issue that cannot be motivated by politics. It affects every single person on this earth. Their governments, including the United States government, should be doing everything possible to alleviate the effects of global warming and to prevent the situation from worsening. The fate of the earth rests in the hands of those who have the power to affect change. Let’s ensure that the change is positive.