Difference between revisions of "Global warming"

From Issuepedia
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[[Category: Issues]]'''Also known as''': climate change
 
[[Category: Issues]]'''Also known as''': climate change
  
[[Global warming]] (GW) refers to the idea that the Earth's average temperature could significantly increase to the point where it will have noticeable (and probably detrimental) effects on how people live. The debate about the existence and nature of this phenomenon has grown increasingly impassioned in recent years.
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[[Global warming]] (GW) refers to the idea that the Earth's average temperature could significantly increase to the point where it will have noticeable (and probably detrimental) effects on how people live ("concept GW").
  
Part of the problem seems to be that the debate has been reduced to a sort of all-or-nothing [[false dilemma]]:
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It also can refer to the following claims:
* GW exists and we are causing it and we should do something to stop it, or else
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* '''narrow GW''': there is currently a huge increase in GW underway which threatens to cause serious problems within the foreseeable future (20-100 years)
* GW doesn't exist; if it does, it's not our fault; if it's our fault, there's either nothing we can do about it; if there's something we could do about it, the effects won't be that bad if we don't so it's really not worth the fuss.
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* '''anthro GW''': Human activity (especially industrial) is largely or solely responsible for the current ongoing spike.
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* '''fixable GW''': There are actions we can take which would reduce the seriousness of the eventual problem.
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* '''active GW''': We should work towards taking those actions.
  
Each side in this debate argues as if "winning" means getting to set the entire agenda for what will (or won't) be done in response, and "losing" means having no input at all into what will or won't be done. Very little is said specifically about what each "side" wants to do if they "win", and those who like to keep debates stirred up rather than seeking to resolve them are feeding happily on this and encouraging it.
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Within the [[United States]] (excluding the [[scientific establishment]]) the debate about the existence and nature of this phenomenon has grown increasingly impassioned in recent years, apparently fueled by large-corporate manipulation. Despite having been refuted, many of the same anti-GW arguments surface repeatedly, and thus are more an attempt to stifle discussion of GW (or muddy the waters) than they are honest skepticism.
  
In order to have the arguments start to make sense, then, perhaps the debate should be about ''what should be done under various conditions'', where the conditions are stated in terms which can be measured. For example, "If a forecast is made which everyone agrees was done using sound methodology, and that forecast shows global temperatures averaging more than 5 degrees above normal over the next 25 years, then we as should be willing to spend at least X dollars of global resources, divided proportionally among the signatory countries by [[gross national product|GNP]], towards either reversing the temperature change itself or at least ameliorating the effects of said change on the most vulnerable members of our global habitat (to be divided amongst humans and non-humans according to a formula set out in Appendix C etc. etc.)"
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See:
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* [[arguments against global warming]] – for legitimate arguments against the various aspects of GW
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* [[global warming denial]] – for the more blatant attempts to confuse the issue.
  
 
==Related Articles==
 
==Related Articles==
* If humans are at all responsible for [[global warming]] (a point currently under debate, as described here), then by definition global warming is a [[sustainability]] issue.
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* Reduction of activities believed to lead to [[global warming]] is a [[sustainability]] issue.
* James Hansen, "NASA's top climatologist", has claimed in writing and on TV that the [[2000-2007 US Presidential Administration|Bush Administration]] has tried to restrict and suppress discussion of global warming
 
* Prominent deniers of global warming include [[Bjorn Lomborg]]
 
 
==Debate==
 
==Debate==
 
===Resolved Points===
 
===Resolved Points===
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* what sorts of countermeasures should be taken (e.g. should we try to counteract the warming trend itself, or just be prepared to deal with the changing climate and rising sea levels as they happen?)
 
* what sorts of countermeasures should be taken (e.g. should we try to counteract the warming trend itself, or just be prepared to deal with the changing climate and rising sea levels as they happen?)
  
There appears to be some considerable political pressure to deny that there is a dangerous warming trend.
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There appears to be some considerable political pressure within the [[United States]] to [[global warming denial|deny]] that there is a dangerous warming trend, that we are causing it if it exists, and that we should do anything about it if we are causing it.
 
===Difficulty of Resolution===
 
===Difficulty of Resolution===
Part of the problem is that the issue has become heavily politicized, largely because direct countermeasures (attempts to counteract the warming trend) tend to be unpopular amongst those who would need to implement them, and those who would need to implement them are generally large businesses with significant amounts of political clout and ability to drive the discussion in directions favorable to them.
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Obstacles to resolving the debate include:
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* The issue has become heavily politicized, largely because direct countermeasures (attempts to counteract the warming trend) tend to be unpopular amongst those who would need to implement them, and those who would need to implement them are generally large businesses with significant amounts of political clout and ability to drive the discussion in directions favorable to them.
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* Determination of whether or not the phenomenon is of genuine concern requires the integration of large amounts of data – over long timespans and a large number of different geographical locations – in order to notice subtle real effects without raising false alarms due to temporary or local effects.
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* Attempted solutions have global effects, which are the sum total of all countermeasures plus any net increase in GW (or in whatever factors we believe may be contributing to GW, e.g. atmospheric CO<sub>2</sub>); there is no way to determine the effect of a single, isolated experiment. In other words, there is no direct way to be sure "what works"; we have to rely on atmospheric models and simulations of proposed changes.
  
Another part of the problem is that determining whether or not the phenomenon is of genuine concern requires the integration of large amounts of data &ndash; over long timespans and a large number of different geographical locations &ndash; in order to notice subtle real effects without raising false alarms due to temporary or local effects.
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==Links==
===Contrary Opinions===
 
Although the majority of scientists agree that global warming is occurring and is caused by humanity, a few disagree; each of these few generally express one of the following positions:
 
 
 
* The Earth is not warming: surface records seem to show a warming trend, but satellite and weather balloon records do not.
 
* The Earth is warming but the cause is unknown
 
* The Earth is warming but mostly due to natural processes
 
* Global warming is occurring but not as much as feared
 
 
 
(Reference: [[wikipedia:List of scientists opposing global warming consensus]])
 
====Arguments Against====
 
Arguments against global warming:
 
* [[Global warming is junk science]]: There are claims that scientists "proving" global warming are purposefully lying and modifying data or at least using questionable analytical methods.
 
* <s>Scientists are divided on the issue</s>: although there are a few dissenters, the scientific consensus agrees that global warming is happening and that it is anthropogenic; see [http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/306/5702/1686  The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change]
 
* <s>[[Global warming is self-correcting]]</s>: possibly, but the corrections may take some time
 
*At least one group has argued that the Earth is actually ''cooling'':
 
** [http://www.nationalcenter.org/NPA388.html New Research Indicates the Earth May Be Cooling] by Amy Ridenour of the conservative [[wikipedia:National Center for Public Policy Research|National Center for Public Policy Research]]
 
*** [http://www.ornery.org/cgi-bin/ubbcgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=6;t=003381 response to Ridenour]
 
====Editorials Against====
 
* '''2007-10-17''' [http://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB119258265537661384.html Global Warming Delusions] by Daniel R. Botkin:
 
** {{arg.point| (premise) The only reason global warming matters is how it affects life, and the evidence that global warming will have serious effects on life is thin. Most evidence suggests the contrary.}}
 
*** {{arg.point| (evidence) During the past 2.5 million years, a period that scientists now know experienced climatic changes as rapid and as warm as modern climatological models suggest will happen to us, almost none of the millions of species on Earth went extinct.}}
 
**** {{arg.info|"The exceptions were about 20 species of large mammals (the famous megafauna of the last ice age -- saber-tooth tigers, hairy mammoths and the like), which went extinct about 10,000 to 5,000 years ago at the end of the last ice age, and many dominant trees and shrubs of northwestern Europe. But elsewhere, including North America, few plant species went extinct, and few mammals."}}
 
*** {{arg.point| (evidence) Also, scientific papers by Prof. Sarah Randolph of Oxford University show that temperature changes do not correlate well with changes in the distribution or frequency of [certain dangerous] diseases; warming has not broadened their distribution and is highly unlikely to do so in the future, global warming or not.}}
 
*** {{arg.counter|The evidence given relates solely to natural life, and says very little about how rising temperatures will affect human habitats, especially those in low-lying areas.}}
 
** The article also argues that exaggerating the truth in order to get a sluggish, complacent public to react is ''not'' justified
 
*** ''I have to agree with this completely. The truth must be protected from political abuse; that is part of the purpose of Issuepedia. --{{woozle.init}}''
 
* '''2007-10-03''' [http://www.etherzone.com/2007/bren100307.shtml Stop the Global Warming Campaign: We Have the Power to Win This Fight] by Phil Brennan: argues that global warming is a fiction which the government as using as an excuse to enact new laws which will gradually restrict our freedoms. Sounds like a twisted version of the reality that the [[War on Terror]] is being used for that same end -- is this a partial truth (our freedoms are in danger) concealing a lie (the claim that GW is a fraud), or is there some truth to it (that GW, fraud or real, is being used as an excuse to curtail freedoms)? The only GW measures even being ''considered'', as far as I am aware, do not in any way restrict ''personal'' freedom, but only the "freedoms" of giant corporations which emit environmentally-significant amounts of waste.
 
* '''2007-05-02''' [[From Papal Indulgences to Carbon Credits Is Global Warming a Sin?]] by [[Alexander Cockburn]]
 
* '''2007-03-04''' [http://www.ornery.org/essays/warwatch/2007-03-04-1.html All in a Good Cause] by [[Orson Scott Card]]: see [[global warming is junk science]] for details
 
* '''2006-07-02''' [http://www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110008597 Don't Believe the Hype]: "Al Gore is wrong. There's no 'consensus' on global warming." ''Umm... yes, there is? (need article about [[scientific consensus on global warming]], I guess...)''
 
* '''2006-06-12''' [http://www.canadafreepress.com/2006/harris061206.htm Scientists respond to Gore's warnings of climate catastrophe] by Tom Harris (warning: popups)
 
* '''2006-04-12''' [http://www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110008220 Climate of Fear] by Richard Lindzen: "Global-warming alarmists intimidate dissenting scientists into silence" ''Yeah, right. It's those darn fascistic GW people trying to intimidate poor helpless oil and chemical companies into not polluting the atmosphere, for their own selfish purposes...''
 
 
 
==Links (other than Against)==
 
 
===Reference===
 
===Reference===
* Wikipedia: | [[wikipedia:Global warming|Global warming]] | [[wikipedia:Global warming controversy|Global warming controversy]] | [[wikipedia:Sea level rise|Sea level rise]] |
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* Wikipedia: | [[wikipedia:Global warming|Global warming]] | [[wikipedia:Sea level rise|Sea level rise]] |
 
* {{conservapedia}} (as of 2007-08-04) frames the debate as largely political, with the data not supporting the idea that there's anything to worry about
 
* {{conservapedia}} (as of 2007-08-04) frames the debate as largely political, with the data not supporting the idea that there's anything to worry about
 
* {{dkosopedia}}
 
* {{dkosopedia}}
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* [http://www.livescience.com/environment/060201_temperature_differences.html Conflicting Claims on Global Warming and Why It's All Moot] at LiveScience
 
* [http://www.livescience.com/environment/060201_temperature_differences.html Conflicting Claims on Global Warming and Why It's All Moot] at LiveScience
 
* [http://www.fcnl.org/issues/issue.php?issue_id=102 Friends Committee on National Legislation]
 
* [http://www.fcnl.org/issues/issue.php?issue_id=102 Friends Committee on National Legislation]
*[http://sca21.wikia.com Sustainable Community Action] - [http://sca21.wikia.com/wiki/Category:Climate_change sca21:category:Climate change]
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* [http://sca21.wikia.com Sustainable Community Action] - [http://sca21.wikia.com/wiki/Category:Climate_change sca21:category:Climate change]
 
* [http://gknowledge.wikia.com/wiki/Global_Warming Green Knowledge Wiki]
 
* [http://gknowledge.wikia.com/wiki/Global_Warming Green Knowledge Wiki]
 
* [http://www.gcrio.org/ipcc/qa/ Common Questions about Climate Change] by United Nations Environment Programme - World Meteorological commOrganization
 
* [http://www.gcrio.org/ipcc/qa/ Common Questions about Climate Change] by United Nations Environment Programme - World Meteorological commOrganization
 
* [http://www.royalsoc.ac.uk/landing.asp?id=1278 The Royal Society (UK)] index of articles and statements on climate change
 
* [http://www.royalsoc.ac.uk/landing.asp?id=1278 The Royal Society (UK)] index of articles and statements on climate change
* [http://illconsidered.blogspot.com/2006/02/how-to-talk-to-global-warming-sceptic.html How to Talk to a Global Warming Sceptic]: an excellent collection of skeptical arguments-and-responses
 
 
* [http://www.planetwork.net/climate/science.html Scientific Reports on Climate]
 
* [http://www.planetwork.net/climate/science.html Scientific Reports on Climate]
 
 
===Articles & Blog Entries===
 
===Articles & Blog Entries===
 
* '''2007-04-22''' [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laurie-david-and-sheryl-crow/karl-rove-gets-thrown-und_b_46501.html Karl Rove Gets Thrown Under the Stop Global Warming Bus] by [[Laurie David]] and [[Sheryl Crow]] (related: [[Karl Rove]])
 
* '''2007-04-22''' [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laurie-david-and-sheryl-crow/karl-rove-gets-thrown-und_b_46501.html Karl Rove Gets Thrown Under the Stop Global Warming Bus] by [[Laurie David]] and [[Sheryl Crow]] (related: [[Karl Rove]])
 
===Editorials===
 
===Editorials===
 
* [http://www.philforhumanity.com/Global_Warming.html Global Warming: Mankind's Greatest Threat] by Phil B.
 
* [http://www.philforhumanity.com/Global_Warming.html Global Warming: Mankind's Greatest Threat] by Phil B.
===Debunking Myths===
 
* [http://www.wmconnolley.org.uk/sci/iceage/ Was an imminent Ice Age predicted in the '70s? No] "If you can find me a reference saying otherwise, I'll put it here."
 
 
===Discussion===
 
===Discussion===
* '''2007-04-15''' [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k69HUuyI5Mk Freeman Dyson on Global Warming 2of2 Stratospheric Cooling]: "A prominent scientist who's followed the science of global warming from the beginning, Dyson explains why climate models have no scientific merit, why average global ground temperature is a great fiction, and what he believes the real dangers of increased CO2 in the atmosphere are. He suggests that the relatively simple solution of land use management could potentially give us the ability to control the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere at any level we'd like, and there's no need to stop burning coal and oil."
 
** [[User:Woozle/Freeman Dyson on Global Warming]]: Dyson isn't saying that it's not real, but that the term "global warming" is misleading
 
* [http://www.jerrypournelle.com/global.html Chaos Manor Special Report]: collection of short & long pieces, some very detailed; does not seem to be parroting anyone's party line
 
** [http://www.jerrypournelle.com/mail/mail421.html#Friday Subject: Climate change and Richard Lindzen]
 
===Significant Points===
 
* [http://www.worldchanging.com/archives/004139.html Al Gore at the TED 2006 conference] has some good overviews on the Global Warming situation: "There's no real disagreement about global warming &ndash; a survery of peer reviewed papers showed 928 supporting a theory of global warming and 0 opposing it. But there's a powerful lobby that is producing doubt, and suceeding &ndash; a survey ... reveals that 53% of popular press articles have some doubt about global warming."
 
* '''2005-05-04''' [http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=05/04/22/1338256 ExxonMobil Spends Millions Funding Global Warming Skeptics]: doesn't automatically invalidate global warming skepticism, but any argument which starts with "many authorities seem to agree that it's not happening" should be aware that the balance may have been tilted a bit.
 
 
===Possible Solutions===
 
===Possible Solutions===
 
* "[http://www.worldchanging.com/archives/003861.html stabilization wedges]": No single solution will be efficient enough fast enough, but in combination they may be enough
 
* "[http://www.worldchanging.com/archives/003861.html stabilization wedges]": No single solution will be efficient enough fast enough, but in combination they may be enough
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* '''2007-09''' [http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=3980 Why Climate Change Can't Be Stopped] by Paul J. Saunders and Vaughan Turekian
 
* '''2007-09''' [http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=3980 Why Climate Change Can't Be Stopped] by Paul J. Saunders and Vaughan Turekian
 
* '''2007-05-15''' [http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20070515/sc_afp/wwfclimateenergy_070515141454;_ylt=AnUvfQ4dXSyOtzBdseDyKthrAlMA World faces 5-year deadline for decisions on climate change, says World Wildlife Federation]: "Governments need to take key decisions within five years on how to tackle climate change to cope with an expected doubling of energy demand over the next 50 years, the environmental group WWF said Tuesday."
 
* '''2007-05-15''' [http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20070515/sc_afp/wwfclimateenergy_070515141454;_ylt=AnUvfQ4dXSyOtzBdseDyKthrAlMA World faces 5-year deadline for decisions on climate change, says World Wildlife Federation]: "Governments need to take key decisions within five years on how to tackle climate change to cope with an expected doubling of energy demand over the next 50 years, the environmental group WWF said Tuesday."
* '''2007-03-04''' [http://www.ornery.org/essays/warwatch/2007-03-04-1.html All in a Good Cause] by [[Orson Scott Card]]: the story of the hoaxing of global warming, with links to a couple of books for supporting evidence (but nothing online).
 
* '''2007-02-28''' [http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/02/070228-mars-warming.html Mars Melt Hints at Solar, Not Human, Cause for Warming, Scientist Says]
 
 
* '''2007-02-02''' [[wikipedia:IPCC Fourth Assessment Report|IPCC Fourth Assessment Report]] is released, concluding that global warming is happening, and is very likely caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases
 
* '''2007-02-02''' [[wikipedia:IPCC Fourth Assessment Report|IPCC Fourth Assessment Report]] is released, concluding that global warming is happening, and is very likely caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases
* '''2007-01-11''' [http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/299253_inconvenient11.html Federal Way schools restrict Gore film]: 'Inconvenient Truth' called too [http://www.doonesbury.com/strip/dailydose/index.html?uc_full_date=20070114 controversial]
 
 
* '''2006-12-29''' [[wikinews:Ice shelf breaks free in Canadian arctic|Ice shelf breaks free in Canadian arctic]] (also [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16390346/ MSNBC])
 
* '''2006-12-29''' [[wikinews:Ice shelf breaks free in Canadian arctic|Ice shelf breaks free in Canadian arctic]] (also [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16390346/ MSNBC])
 
* '''2006-12-24''' [[wikinews:Inhabited tropical island lost to rising seas|Inhabited tropical island lost to rising seas]]
 
* '''2006-12-24''' [[wikinews:Inhabited tropical island lost to rising seas|Inhabited tropical island lost to rising seas]]
* '''2006-11-01''' [http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061102/ap_on_go_co/global_warming Scientists say White House muzzled them] ([http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/politics/4304608.html alt])
 
 
* '''2006-10-16''' [http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=2572811 Antarctic Ice Collapse Linked To Man-Made Greenhouse Gases]: Scientist Claim Study of Larson Ice Shelf Provides First Direct Link Between Global Warming And Human Activity  
 
* '''2006-10-16''' [http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=2572811 Antarctic Ice Collapse Linked To Man-Made Greenhouse Gases]: Scientist Claim Study of Larson Ice Shelf Provides First Direct Link Between Global Warming And Human Activity  
 
* '''2006-10-04''' [http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/G/GLOBAL_WARMING Scientists Issue Global Warming Report]
 
* '''2006-10-04''' [http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/G/GLOBAL_WARMING Scientists Issue Global Warming Report]
 
* '''2006-09-25''' [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15003895/ Global warming nears ‘dangerous’ level] "Researchers say average temperatures are close to a million-year high" ... "In a 2003 study, scientists showed that 1,700 plant and animal species migrated toward the poles at about 4 miles (6.4 kilometers) per decade in the last 50 years. That migration rate is not fast enough to keep up with the current rate of movement of a given temperature zone, which has reached about 25 miles (40 kilometers) per decade in the period 1975 to 2005..."
 
* '''2006-09-25''' [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15003895/ Global warming nears ‘dangerous’ level] "Researchers say average temperatures are close to a million-year high" ... "In a 2003 study, scientists showed that 1,700 plant and animal species migrated toward the poles at about 4 miles (6.4 kilometers) per decade in the last 50 years. That migration rate is not fast enough to keep up with the current rate of movement of a given temperature zone, which has reached about 25 miles (40 kilometers) per decade in the period 1975 to 2005..."
 
* '''2006-09-21''' [http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/science/09/21/branson.global.warming.ap/  Richard Branson pledges $3B to fight climate change]
 
* '''2006-09-21''' [http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/science/09/21/branson.global.warming.ap/  Richard Branson pledges $3B to fight climate change]
* '''2006-07-27'''
 
** [http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/27/opinion/27doran.html Cold, Hard Facts]: op-ed by Peter Doran,  a polar researcher whose paper on the Antarctic climate has often been misinterpreted (by e.g. [[Michael Crichton]]) as strong evidence of global cooling, or at least evidence against global warming
 
** [http://consciousearth.blogspot.com/2006/07/leaked-memo-reveals-coal-industry.html Leaked Memo Reveals Coal Industry Propoganda Plan]
 
* '''2006-07-20''' [http://www.opinionjournal.com/columnists/pnoonan/?id=110008676 The Heat Is On] by [[Peggy Noonan]] seems to be blaming scientists for not having a firm [[scientific consensus|consensus]] on the issue. Is this the signaling shot for a [[conservative]] attempt to shift the blame as the reality becomes inescapable?
 
*: A response from Stefan Jones on [http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2006/07/then-there-is-t-word.html Contrary Brin]:
 
{{quoteon}}For twenty years you and the other faithful lapdogs of industry have dutifully parroted the sophistry fed to you by the fossil fuel crowd and by free-market ideologues. As the evidence mounted, you moved on to the next set of bogus arguments... and you blame scientists for being dishonest?{{quoteoff}}
 
:: Also, the claim that there is no scientific consensus on global warming is a myth; see [http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/306/5702/1686  The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change]
 
 
* '''2006-07-14''' [http://wireservice.wired.com/wired/story.asp?section=Breaking&storyId=1547364 First half of 2006 is warmest on record]
 
* '''2006-07-14''' [http://wireservice.wired.com/wired/story.asp?section=Breaking&storyId=1547364 First half of 2006 is warmest on record]
* '''2006-04-02''' [http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2006/04/cooler_heads_needed_on_warming.html Cooler Heads Needed on Warming] By [[George Will]]
 
 
* '''2006-03-17''' [http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?chanID=sa003&articleID=000051A6-DE14-1419-9E1483414B7F0000 Statistical Analysis Bolsters Theory Linking Warmer Oceans to Stronger Hurricanes] ([http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/03/18/1819256 slashdot])
 
* '''2006-03-17''' [http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?chanID=sa003&articleID=000051A6-DE14-1419-9E1483414B7F0000 Statistical Analysis Bolsters Theory Linking Warmer Oceans to Stronger Hurricanes] ([http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/03/18/1819256 slashdot])
 
* '''2006-03-02''' [http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2006/mar/HQ_06085_arctic_ice.html NASA Mission Detects Significant Antarctic Ice Mass Loss]
 
* '''2006-03-02''' [http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2006/mar/HQ_06085_arctic_ice.html NASA Mission Detects Significant Antarctic Ice Mass Loss]
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** [http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8734 Greenland's glaciers are speeding to the ocean]: different article on same study; glaciers moving faster than expected
 
** [http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8734 Greenland's glaciers are speeding to the ocean]: different article on same study; glaciers moving faster than expected
 
* '''2006-02-13''' [http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-02/osu-sok021306.php Snows of Kilimanjaro disappearing, glacial ice loss increasing]
 
* '''2006-02-13''' [http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-02/osu-sok021306.php Snows of Kilimanjaro disappearing, glacial ice loss increasing]
* '''2006-01-30''' [http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8650 Top climatologist accuses US of trying to gag him]: James Hansen, NASA's top climate scientist, has accused the [[2000-2007 US Presidential Administration|Bush administration]] of trying to stop him from speaking out after he called for swift cuts in emissions of the greenhouse gases linked to global warming...
 
 
* '''2006-01-25''' [http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8634&feedId=online-news_rss20 2005 was the warmest year on record]
 
* '''2006-01-25''' [http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8634&feedId=online-news_rss20 2005 was the warmest year on record]
 
* '''2006-01-18''' [http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-01/m-gw-011806.php the blame is not with the plants] (in case anyone was confused about that)
 
* '''2006-01-18''' [http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-01/m-gw-011806.php the blame is not with the plants] (in case anyone was confused about that)
 
* '''2006-01-09''' [http://www.livescience.com/imageoftheday/siod_060109.html Tiny Ocean Creatures Tell of Global Warming]
 
* '''2006-01-09''' [http://www.livescience.com/imageoftheday/siod_060109.html Tiny Ocean Creatures Tell of Global Warming]
* '''2006-01''' [http://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/200601/decoder.asp Decoder]: "How the [[George W. Bush|White House]] edits out global warming" by Paul Rauber
 
 
* '''2005-12-19''' [http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2005-12/ncfa-moa121905.php Most of Arctic's near-surface permafrost to thaw by 2100]
 
* '''2005-12-19''' [http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2005-12/ncfa-moa121905.php Most of Arctic's near-surface permafrost to thaw by 2100]
 
* '''2005-12-08'''
 
* '''2005-12-08'''
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* '''2005-09-23''' [http://www.cnn.com/2005/TECH/science/09/23/hurricane.cycle/index.html CNN: New era of hurricanes] "But don't rush to blame it on global warming, experts warn."
 
* '''2005-09-23''' [http://www.cnn.com/2005/TECH/science/09/23/hurricane.cycle/index.html CNN: New era of hurricanes] "But don't rush to blame it on global warming, experts warn."
 
* '''2005-09-16''' [http://news.independent.co.uk/world/science_technology/article312997.ece Global warming 'past the point of no return']
 
* '''2005-09-16''' [http://news.independent.co.uk/world/science_technology/article312997.ece Global warming 'past the point of no return']
* '''2005-05-10''' [http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1480279,00.html The (UK) Guardian]: "David Bellamy's inaccurate and selective figures on glacier shrinkage are a boon to climate change deniers"
 
 
* '''2004-12-03''' [http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/306/5702/1686 The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change]
 
* '''2004-12-03''' [http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/306/5702/1686 The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change]
 
====Bad Reporting====
 
====Bad Reporting====
 
* The '''2006-10-27''' report that [http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/story/0,,1932760,00.html the Atlantic current came to a halt for 10 days in 2004] was a severe misrepresentation of what actually happened, as explained [http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/10/ocean-circulation-new-evidence-yes-slowdown-no here]: a new monitoring array is recording more precise data on the current than has previously available, and one of the things it noted was a "very weak" flow during those 10 days in 2004. However, due to the newness of the data set, scientists don't yet know if this is unusual, part of an accelerating trend, or perfectly normal. As yet, it has no known implications for the climate of Britain or Europe.
 
* The '''2006-10-27''' report that [http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/story/0,,1932760,00.html the Atlantic current came to a halt for 10 days in 2004] was a severe misrepresentation of what actually happened, as explained [http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/10/ocean-circulation-new-evidence-yes-slowdown-no here]: a new monitoring array is recording more precise data on the current than has previously available, and one of the things it noted was a "very weak" flow during those 10 days in 2004. However, due to the newness of the data set, scientists don't yet know if this is unusual, part of an accelerating trend, or perfectly normal. As yet, it has no known implications for the climate of Britain or Europe.

Revision as of 19:20, 10 February 2008

Overview

Also known as: climate change

Global warming (GW) refers to the idea that the Earth's average temperature could significantly increase to the point where it will have noticeable (and probably detrimental) effects on how people live ("concept GW").

It also can refer to the following claims:

  • narrow GW: there is currently a huge increase in GW underway which threatens to cause serious problems within the foreseeable future (20-100 years)
  • anthro GW: Human activity (especially industrial) is largely or solely responsible for the current ongoing spike.
  • fixable GW: There are actions we can take which would reduce the seriousness of the eventual problem.
  • active GW: We should work towards taking those actions.

Within the United States (excluding the scientific establishment) the debate about the existence and nature of this phenomenon has grown increasingly impassioned in recent years, apparently fueled by large-corporate manipulation. Despite having been refuted, many of the same anti-GW arguments surface repeatedly, and thus are more an attempt to stifle discussion of GW (or muddy the waters) than they are honest skepticism.

See:

Related Articles

Debate

Resolved Points

The following points of debate have pretty much been resolved (see #News for details regarding the answers):

  • whether or not the Earth is currently on a general warmining trend – yes
  • whether or not this will have significant effects on anyone – yes
  • whether or not those effects will be bad – in the short term, yes; beyond that depends on a lot of unknown factors

There continues to be debate on the following points:

  • whether or not this trend, if it is real, will continue
  • whether or not the warming is being caused by humanity (strong circumstantial evidence that it is)
    • Could be caused by random climatic drift
    • Could be caused by changes in any of countless variables, e.g. the sun's energy output
  • whether it is in humanity's best interest to attempt countermeasures (as opposed to "letting nature take its course")
  • what sorts of countermeasures should be taken (e.g. should we try to counteract the warming trend itself, or just be prepared to deal with the changing climate and rising sea levels as they happen?)

There appears to be some considerable political pressure within the United States to deny that there is a dangerous warming trend, that we are causing it if it exists, and that we should do anything about it if we are causing it.

Difficulty of Resolution

Obstacles to resolving the debate include:

  • The issue has become heavily politicized, largely because direct countermeasures (attempts to counteract the warming trend) tend to be unpopular amongst those who would need to implement them, and those who would need to implement them are generally large businesses with significant amounts of political clout and ability to drive the discussion in directions favorable to them.
  • Determination of whether or not the phenomenon is of genuine concern requires the integration of large amounts of data – over long timespans and a large number of different geographical locations – in order to notice subtle real effects without raising false alarms due to temporary or local effects.
  • Attempted solutions have global effects, which are the sum total of all countermeasures plus any net increase in GW (or in whatever factors we believe may be contributing to GW, e.g. atmospheric CO2); there is no way to determine the effect of a single, isolated experiment. In other words, there is no direct way to be sure "what works"; we have to rely on atmospheric models and simulations of proposed changes.

Links

Reference

Articles & Blog Entries

Editorials

Discussion

Possible Solutions

  • "stabilization wedges": No single solution will be efficient enough fast enough, but in combination they may be enough
  • 2006-09-01 A Road Map to U.S. Decarbonization by Reuel Shinnar and Francesco Citro, Science magazine: "Alternative energy sources could replace 70% of fossil fuels in America within 30 years at a cost of $200 billion per year."

Humor

  • 2007-04-17 cold outside: cartoon by D.C. Simpson, I Drew This
  • 2006-08-24 grant money: cartoon by D.C. Simpson, I Drew This

News Articles

Bad Reporting

  • The 2006-10-27 report that the Atlantic current came to a halt for 10 days in 2004 was a severe misrepresentation of what actually happened, as explained here: a new monitoring array is recording more precise data on the current than has previously available, and one of the things it noted was a "very weak" flow during those 10 days in 2004. However, due to the newness of the data set, scientists don't yet know if this is unusual, part of an accelerating trend, or perfectly normal. As yet, it has no known implications for the climate of Britain or Europe.