Global warming climate change is happening.x20 A major cause of it is the burning of fossil fuels. The effects of it will be severe and damaging. We are already seeing some effects in extreme weather events, melting glaciers and rising seas. Those are the facts. But ExxonMobil did not like the facts, and funded a propaganda campaign to combat them.x21 “Victory will be achieved when recognition of uncertainty becomes part of the ‘conventional wisdom,’” said a 1998 American Petroleum Institute memo about the budding propaganda campaign.x22 From what I’ve been hearing, it seems ExxonMobil got its “victory”. For example, one of my colleagues thought global warming is a political plot to advance world government. But that would mean that the best scientific organizations and journals in the world are in on the plot.x23 More likely, my colleague was wearing a very shiny tinfoil hat. In another case, a friend of mine thinks the fact of Vikings farming in Greenland 1000 years ago proves a natural warm phase, warmer than the present. But the Viking settlement shows little about worldwide temperature and much about human tenacity.x24 The Vikings had sparse farms with skinny animals, and used up more and more of the land over the course of two centuries before the last of them starved during a bad winter. Another friend of mine gave me a copy of the documentary “The Great Global Warming Swindle” and said it was a BBC production. It turns out the video is not a BBC production, but a propaganda piece full of already debunked global warming denier arguments.x25 I found the answers to these arguments from the website RC Wiki — an index to debunkings of such nonsense that appears in the popular media. RC Wiki is a supplement to RealClimate.org, a reliable source for climate science, written by climate scientists.
RC Wiki: “An index for debunking of various popular media occurrences of climate-related nonsense.”
RealClimate: “Climate science from climate scientists.”
Global atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide have increased markedly as a result of human activities since 1750 and now far exceed pre-industrial values determined from ice cores spanning many thousands of years. The global increases in carbon dioxide concentration are due primarily to fossil fuel use and land use change, while those of methane and nitrous oxide are primarily due to agriculture.
The understanding of anthropogenic warming and cooling infl uences on climate has improved since the TAR, leading to very high confidence7 that the global average net effect of human activities since 1750 has been one of warming, with a radiative forcing of +1.6 [+0.6 to +2.4] Watts per square meter.
Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, as is now evident from observations of increases in global average air and ocean temperatures, widespread melting of snow and ice, and rising global average sea level.
At continental, regional and ocean basin scales, numerous long-term changes in climate have been observed. These include changes in arctic temperatures and ice, widespread changes in precipitation amounts, ocean salinity, wind patterns and aspects of extreme weather including droughts, heavy precipitation, heat waves and the intensity of tropical cyclones.
There is now higher confidence in projected patterns of warming and other regional-scale features, including changes in wind patterns, precipitation and some aspects of extremes and of ice.
ExxonMobil has pumped more than $8 million [from 2000 to 2003] into more than 40 think tanks; media outlets; and consumer, religious, and even civil rights groups that preach skepticism about the oncoming climate catastrophe.
Here is a list of organizations that accept anthropogenic global warming as real and scientifically well-supported:
- NASA‘s Goddard Institute of Space Studies
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
- Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
- National Academy of Sciences
- State of the Canadian Cryosphere
- Environmental Protection Agency
- The Royal Society of the UK
- American Geophysical Union
- American Meteorological Society
- American Institute of Physics
- National Center for Atmospheric Research
- American Meteorological Society
- Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society
First, Greenland is part of a single region. It can not be necessarily taken to represent a global climate shift. See the post on the Medieval Warm Period for a global perspective on this time period. Briefly, the available proxy evidence indicates that global warmth during this period was not particularly pronounced, though some regions may have experienced greater warming than others.
Instead of hunting whales in kayaks, [the Vikings] farmed cattle, goats, and sheep — despite having to keep them in a barn 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for a full 5 months out of the year. It was a constant challenge to get enough fodder for the winter. Starvation of the animals was frequent, emaciation routine. Grazing requirements and growing fodder for the winter led to over-production of pastures, erosion, and the need to go further and further afield to sustain the animals. Deforestation for pastures and firewood proceeded at unsustainable rates. After a couple of centuries, it led to such desperate measures as cutting precious sod for housing construction and even burning it for cooking and heating fuel.
When finally confronted with several severe winters in a row, they, along with the little remaining livestock, simply starved before spring arrived.
On Thursday March 8th , the UK TV Channel 4 aired a programme titled “The Great Global Warming Swindle”. We were hoping for important revelations and final proof that we have all been hornswoggled by the climate Illuminati, but it just repeated the usual specious claims we hear all the time.
* * *