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Posted at 12:00 AM ET, 01/24/2011

Snowball's chance

By Tom Toles

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Be sure to check out my State of the Union Cartoon Caption Contest, now through Jan. 24.
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News before it happens!

Yes, that's what you will find here in my little corner of the webiverse. Why, it wasn't more than...well, exactly two weeks ago that I predicted in a blog post that the Republicans would turn on the Congressional Budget Office because the facts and evidence were getting altogether in the way of their bug-eyed story-telling about the health-care law.

And here we are! Kill the messenger! But put him in the stocks and throw things at him first! And smear lipstick all over his face and put a funny hat on him! That's how to build, I mean destroy people's confidence in their civic institutions!

The GOP is nothing if not nimble of foot when it comes to heavy-handedness. So far, though, only the junior varsity of their squad has taken the field to destroy one of the last respected institutions here. "Smoke and mirrors" and "Garbage in, garbage out," are stale stuff, but give them time! They'll manufacture a genuine fake scandal soon! It's only been two weeks! Fox News, are you SLEEPING??? --Tom Toles

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By Tom Toles  | January 24, 2011; 12:00 AM ET
Categories:  Environment & global warming  
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Comments

chop1

I do have a 'couple' of hours of research in on this topic, you may want to look at the links posted on this thread.

Insults are are the arguments of the ignorant. This subject does have some shades of gray.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 11:59 PM | Report abuse

Let's see how I can answer dalyplanet when he asks "Show me the data to support warming in your area."

Um - NO. How lazy and uneducated do you have to be to not do this yourself? How immune to obvious truths are you?

Do you know what a glacier is? First read about how long they've been around. Then read about how fast they're melting. Then google some pictures.

Do you know what a thermometer is? NASA has a few of those too plus some other fancy equipment. Go to their website for tons of documentation on global surface temperatures.

Do you know what a plant is? Do some research on plant migration caused by global warming.

Seriously, dude. Don't compound being ignorant by then being so incredibly lazy that you're unwilling to reduce your own willful ignorance by looking up some basic facts.

Or - continue to get your "facts" from Senator Inhofe and Rush Limbaugh rather than from scientists and logical reason.

I bet I can guess which one of these choices you'll choose.

Posted by: chop1 | January 24, 2011 10:08 PM | Report abuse

redhead

Thanks for looking and listening. If the rest of the world worked like this life would be better.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 9:57 PM | Report abuse

dalyplanet
~~~~~

1) Keeping on the actual temp measuring and statistical derivation of global average temp, do you agree that the graph of past average temp has changed from the first IPCC summery to the last.

2) Do you agree that significantly reducing the total number of temp measuring stations (6000 to 1200) and subsequent adjustments may show greater warming than what is occuring.

3) Do you agree that many of the temp stations have flaws in their placement that may need adjustment and this adjustment may introduce noise into the data causing inaccuracies in the reported Global Average Temperature.~~~~

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 4:50 PM |

1) I do think that the change in thermal site data that's collected has changed the relative standard deviation (spread around the mean) of data used to determine the trend in global temperatures for some regions, and your supplied links speak to that.

I don't think this has changed the measured direction of the trend; it's still viewed as clearly upward by most atmospheric scientists in this field. I've never stated an amount of this increase in the blog, but think atmospheric science has established it's very probably upward.

2) For that data it may very well change the amount of the slope of the trend, but I don't think that's true for all regions. And again, as your last link showed, the measurement sites aren't missing; their data are just being systematically adjusted or dropped in an effort to reduce uncertainty in models using their data, adjustments that meteorologist have always strived to do. This is an entire meteorological sub-discipline.

Since CO2 is long-lived in the atmosphere and IR-blocking across the entire planet's atmosphere is what's most important, globally-averaged temperature is, therefore, more important than regional temperature changes. And again, I think the globally-averaged temperature is what's important in the long run, and at this point I view the scientific conclusion is that the trend is upward, above and beyond that of natural uncertainty.

3) Increased uncertainties (noise) in data used to calculate an over-all trend does not necessarily mean that the trend measured is less useful as a predictive tool. It does increase the uncertainty in the slope of the trend but this does not necessarily mean that the trend doesn't reflect reality. This last is very important.

For instance, just because we don't know the amount of total cost of social security in 2050 if we don't change something--the uncertainty in the slope is large--the direction of the line is unmistakably up and policy decisions can, and I would posit, must be made based on this uncertain trend.

And since the result of not doing anything has such possibly negative results, acting---before we can cut the uncertainty, for instance, by half or by 25% or even by 15%---is, in my estimation, something reasonable to do. Very reasonable.

Posted by: redhead1990 | January 24, 2011 8:43 PM | Report abuse

CO2 emissions were relatively stable throughout history, until @ 100 years ago. Since then, they've gone through the roof, particularly these last few decades. Ocean temps have gone up. Average temps have gone up worldwide, sharply given former rates before CO2 induced climate change. 2010 was tied for the hottest on record since 1880. Glaciers that have been around forever are melting within our lifetime

Posted by: chop1 |

This is the story The sky is falling. even the IPCC does not make theses crazy claims in their reports but their summery does go that direction. How do you know that it is the warmest year on record. You read it in a paper. There are problems in taking the earths temperature. Show me the data to support warming in your area.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 6:23 PM | Report abuse

BPadrino exemplifies the kind of climate change denial I mentioned below that is so completely ludicrous.

He says "In order for their (climage change scientists) claim to be true, they make the implicit assumption that before the advent of fossil fuels, climate didn't change."

That's not their claim, Einstein, and you'd know this if you knew what you were talking about.

CO2 emissions were relatively stable throughout history, until @ 100 years ago. Since then, they've gone through the roof, particularly these last few decades. Ocean temps have gone up. Average temps have gone up worldwide, sharply given former rates before CO2 induced climate change. 2010 was tied for the hottest on record since 1880. Glaciers that have been around forever are melting within our lifetime.

If there's enough evidence to choke a horse that global warming is real - and there is - you'd have to be thick in the head to ignore the obvious. Which is why it's so stunning to see so many example of folks who are just that.

Posted by: chop1 | January 24, 2011 5:55 PM | Report abuse

I find the term 'global warming or climate change deniers' quite ironic when applied to people who are skeptic about the degree of anthropogenically induced climate change. In reality, those who claim that climate change is the result of human activity are the actual global warming deniers. In order for their claim to be true, they make the implicit assumption that before the advent of fossil fuels, climate didn't change. they must believe that, if we just stopped burning fossil fuels, the warming trend of the past 20,000 years would be halted and sea levels would decrease. One of the most obvious fallacies used to prop up a weak argument is to mischaracterize the opponent's position. Fortunately, it doesn't fool many people.

Posted by: bpadrino | January 24, 2011 5:40 PM | Report abuse

From the link

Overall, the satellite measurements show lower trends than surface measurements. This is a bit of a puzzle, because climate models suggest that overall the lower troposphere should be warming about 1.2X faster than the surface (though over land there should be little difference, or the surface should be warming faster). Thus, there are at least three possibilities:

* The surface temperature trends show slightly too much warming.
* The satellite temperature trends show slightly too little warming.
* The prediction of climate models (about amplified warming in the lower troposphere) is incorrect, or there are complicating factors that are being missed.

I would believe the satellite !! The surface trends show 1.5 times satellite trends, a lot more than slightly too much warming !!

The 'models' are not correct.

Posted by: dalyplanet

This is from the
http://www.skepticalscience.com/surface-temperature-measurements.htm

This is a believer site

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 5:30 PM | Report abuse

redhead

I can not type fast enough.

Keeping on the actual temp measuring and statistical derivation of global average temp, do you agree that the graph of past average temp has changed from the first IPCC summery to the last.

Do you agree that significantly reducing the total number of temp measuring stations (6000 to 1200) and subsequent adjustments may show greater warming than what is occuring.

Do you agree that many of the temp stations have flaws in their placement that may need adjustment and this adjustment may introduce noise into the data causing inaccuracies in the reported Global Average Temperature.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Good point from Rexreddy: "The best thing you can do to save your kind is stop making so many more little hairless apes than you have the ability to feed.
Wrap that rascal and take your pills!"

Also, how about a simple thought experiment: What happens when you close all your doors and windows and burn ANYTHING (fossil fuels, wood, paper, whatever) in order to provide energy not provided by light energy from the sun?

Meanwhile, not to worry, friends... even after cutting down all the forests on the planet to grow food and energy crops, there is one place plants continue to abound: the oceans. All that CO2 has to go somewhere, and so does the runoff from agricultural waste, and it all ends up in that big bowl of primordial soup: the oceans. Not only will the oceans not actually die, the algae that grows in them may eventually decompose and be compressed and, over the millenia, become the next crop of fossil fuels for the next mega-generation of whatever takes our place at the top of the food chain 100,000 or more centuries from now. They should thank us!

Posted by: jonroesler | January 24, 2011 4:45 PM | Report abuse

One can always search the Internet for cherry-picked data from "scientists" who are climate change deniers. Unfortunately, not all scientists are of equal ability in assessing the issue of climate change. SO we might look for a consensus. It turns out that 97% of climate experts agree humans are causing global warming--that's just about a good as it gets.

Looking at the post of dalyplanet, where comments by Robert C. Balling Jr. and Craig D. Idso (both of the Office of Climatology, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, USA) are presented. Their points, with responses:

* "A satellite measurement gets close to this. Why not use satellite data to prove AGW. The reason is that satellite data prove the opposite or show no trend."

The satellite period of temperature records doesn't go back very far, and I wonder why these characters don't argue THAT point. But at http://www.skepticalscience.com/satellite-measurements-warming-troposphere.htm , you can see that satellite-measured Temps from 1980 to 2009 show a trend of increasing temperatures. And satellite-measured temperatures are quite consistent with direct measurements(radiosonde).

* "How much of the 1 degree of warming in the last 100 year can be placed directly to burning fuel when really it may be due to cutting trees or other natural considerations."

What natural considerations???? Tree clearing/burning has been looked at. But there are always those pesky, unidentified "natural considerations" that deniers bring up. Well, volcanoes, solar radiation, etc. have also been "looked at." as for solar radiation causing the increase in temperatures, which deniers say isn't happening anyway, see: http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming.htm It turns out that Solar Irradiance has been decreasing since the 1960s Ooops! OK..OK...then "THOSE number must be wrong" say the deniers.

* "Why is there no serious discussion of mitigation to change and possible positive changes associated with a little warmer world.

There are concerns that the cure for CO2 is worse than the disease. Pumping thousands of billions of CO2 into the ground annually may be hazardous."

There has been and there is an ongoing debate/discussion about the changes caused by a warmer world (which we deny is happening anyway). Do these guys NOT read the IPCC reports? Do these guys NOT know what the IPCC does? Of course scientists are looking into the potential problems caused by the various means of disposing of CO2.

I won't over all the points in dalyplanet's post. He did some work--just enough to justify his position on GW. If he'd gone further, he might have stumbled onto the truth. But these two characters from AZ, assuming they are accurately quoted, first deny GW, then bring up a number of points as if GW were a given. Typical denier way of debating the point. It's all bait and switch. And conservatives do the same thing with the PPACA.

Posted by: ptgrunner | January 24, 2011 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I think we are fortunate to have global warming! I cannot imagine how cold it would be if we did not have it!!!

Posted by: fcrucian | January 24, 2011 4:08 PM | Report abuse

So, why don't you invest in that little scenario, and show a little love to R & D for clean and renewable energy?

Posted by: taroya

If this was about unplugging the electric meter I would be all over it. This is about Big power and Electric gets us to pay to change doing biz while Wall Street gets a piece of the action and World Bank too.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 3:59 PM | Report abuse

~~The big picture points for me are,

1) How much of the 1 degree of warming in the last 100 year can be placed directly to burning fuel w1hen really it may be due to cutting trees or other natural considerations.

2) Why is there no serious discussion of mitigation to change and possible positive changes associated with a little warmer world.

3) There are concerns that the cure for CO2 is worse than the disease. Pumping thousands of billions of CO2 into the ground annually may be hazardous

4) IPCC and others have so many adjustments and speculations from science to public discourse that it weakens their argument. Why the exaggeration if the facts are there. Mann's hockey stick is but one example.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 3:32 PM | Report abuse

dalyplanet,
1) From my point of view if atmospheric CO2 is causing an increase in heat trapping then it's not too hard to see all the anthropogenic activities that increase CO2 as something to examine.

Let's consider only two things: If we're increasing CO2 by both freeing carbon stored for eons in fossil fuels while at the same time decreasing the natural storage for that process (in forests) it would appear that fossil fuel burning can't be pointed to as the reason for atmospheric CO2 increase (your point). But deforestation hasn't been going on planet-wide for very long--like the recent few decades--yet CO2 has been measurably increasing since the end of the 1700s. So IF we consider just those two, then fossil fuel emissions appear to play a significant role.

2) The reason why few scientists are focussing on good changes from a little warmer world is because the amount and effects of the negatives are so uncertain, and so they're focussing on decreasing the uncertainties involving negatives. If food production in the US improves by, say, 5% and that causes a drop in food prices of 15% that's good, but how does that balance the proposed changes in rainfall or forest fires etc.?

Quantifying uncertainty is in the heart of all science (and lots of this blog) and although we'd like to not have uncertainty about anything this important, it's inherent in measurement and modeling. Just because we know that uncertainty is there doesn't mean we stop.

3) I don't think the future of very much CO2 sequestration is in old-well injection either but once we take sequestration seriously it'll be in the mix of choices that the market will have to choose from. Just because one sequestration technique is bad doesn't mean that the task of sequestration should be pursued. This last is really important.

4) Very few atmospheric scientists base their conclusions about climate change on a single paper or even a set of papers on one topic. It's the preponderance of scientific data in this field that's the most convincing to the majority of scientists in the field.

Posted by: redhead1990 | January 24, 2011 3:58 PM | Report abuse

From the link

Overall, the satellite measurements show lower trends than surface measurements. This is a bit of a puzzle, because climate models suggest that overall the lower troposphere should be warming about 1.2X faster than the surface (though over land there should be little difference, or the surface should be warming faster). Thus, there are at least three possibilities:

* The surface temperature trends show slightly too much warming.
* The satellite temperature trends show slightly too little warming.
* The prediction of climate models (about amplified warming in the lower troposphere) is incorrect, or there are complicating factors that are being missed.

I would believe the satellite !! The surface trends show 1.5 times satellite trends, a lot more than slightly too much warming !!

The 'models' are not correct.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 3:53 PM | Report abuse

"Deniers" sounds like something out of the inquisition............................... Pretty sad for people pretending to be intellectuals with all the information. Personally, I think we have weather change related to cycles. Humans contribute to the cycles one way or the other. "Deniers" is really such an ignorant term. The Nazi in the cartoon should be facing the other way.

Posted by: shred11 | January 24, 2011 3:42 PM | Report abuse

redhead This is an abstract from peer reviewed.

The United States Historical Climatology Network (USHCN) temperature database is commonly used in regional climate analyses. However, the raw temperature records in the USHCN are adjusted substantially to account for a variety of potential contaminants to the dataset. We compare the USHCN data with several surface and upper-air datasets and show that the effects of the various USHCN adjustments produce a significantly more positive, and likely spurious, trend in the USHCN data.

Robert C. Balling Jr.

Office of Climatology, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, USA

Craig D. Idso

Office of Climatology, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, USA

Lets change the subject later. Today we can work on actual global temperature measurement.

Here is a link to currently active surface stations with photos.

http://www.surfacestations.org/online_database.htm

From GISS website
Q. What Surface Air Temperature do the local media report ?
A. The media report the reading of 1 particular thermometer of a nearby weather station. This temperature may be very different from the true SAT even at that location and has certainly nothing to do with the true regional SAT.---- To measure the true regional SAT, we would have to use many 50 ft stacks of thermometers distributed evenly over the whole region, an obvious practical impossibility.

A satellite measurement gets close to this. Why not use satellite data to prove AGW. The reason is that satellite data prove the opposite or show no trend.


Enter adjustments "Before the “adjustment” by NOAA, temperatures in Darwin were falling at 0.7 Celsius per century, but after the homogenization they were rising at 1.2 Celsius per century. The gross upward adjustment was 2 Celsius per century." from Watts


The true picture is that global temp measurement uses only about 1200 to 1500 thermometers and then the data is adjusted to come up with a number and many believe that number is not correct compared to past numbers. Especially when claiming to be accurate to 1\100 of a degree.

The big picture points for me are,

How much of the 1 degree of warming in the last 100 year can be placed directly to burning fuel when really it may be due to cutting trees or other natural considerations.

Why is there no serious discussion of mitigation to change and possible positive changes associated with a little warmer world.

There are concerns that the cure for CO2 is worse than the disease. Pumping thousands of billions of CO2 into the ground annually may be hazardous

IPCC and others have so many adjustments and speculations from science to public discourse that it weakens their argument. Why the exaggeration if the facts are there. Mann's hockey stick is but one example.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Glaciers that have been around for tens of thousands of years are all of a sudden melting within our lifetime. The fabled Northwest passage is no longer covered in ice year round. Every year, the aggregate temperate is higher while the Arctic and Antarctic Circle's decrease........

.....and yet we still have a cadre of the willfully ignorant who deny global warming and climate change. In fact, we have an entire political party on the Right that engages in this rampant that engages in the rampant stupidity of denying obvious fact.

Call a spade a spade. Folks are welcome to share their opinions, which some folks inevitably do with me: "global warming is not real." And I have the prerogative to think "you are an ignoramus," tell them so, and walk away, which I also do.

For those who live with your head stuffed where the sun don't shine, don't expect rational people to pretend to give you any respect.

Posted by: chop1 | January 24, 2011 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Something that all of you global warmer deniers may want to consider (actually, a couple of things, but we will start here):

During the Carboniferous era, when all of this fossil fuel was first created, it was TOO HOT for Homo Sapiens Sapiens to survive.

The second thing is: Why do you love sending your money to the utility company every month? Just so they can send it on to Saudi Arabia? Wouldn't you rather NOT have a utility bill at all?

Well, wouldn't you?

So, why don't you invest in that little scenario, and show a little love to R & D for clean and renewable energy?

Sure, if YOU don't throw your weight behind, the other guy will...except when the other guy is YOU. And that is all thats left. YOU.

Posted by: taroya | January 24, 2011 2:56 PM | Report abuse

I am almost as old as the Universe was created and the Earth formed during this process.Obviously, many "AGES" have gone by, but the changes have occured over the millions of years, imperciptable in the life span of humans.
I totally agree that the population has, significantly, increased since my Birth.This sure must increase the production of CO2- a crucial molicuale, which may be the cause for Global Warming.
After pouring over many articles,there is no doubt, the Earth alters its way in reducing the CO2 level- the main thing is by building-blocks of CORALS, which take in and convert to Carbonates-this is mass scale effort, not depending wholly on man.The other is Vegetation-granted there is mass scale deforestation, which is used for human consumption.Atthe same time, humans in all parts of the world are growing food producing plants- this entire process, during photosynthesis, releases Oxygen(O2), at the same removes CO2 from the atmoshere.This argument, still, is not satisfactory,as the temperature in the earth surface is increasing.
I have lived through so many ages,the changes are only cyclic and we are in the middle of one. There is no substanciation that the ice is melting- in approximately 2047,they expect Ocean level to rise by 6inches, which would physically flood large areas currently occupied by Humans.Do the animals play any role, yes-in dispersion of seeds to various parts-there may be new vegetation- an example, I have seen with my own eyes, a wild Orchids species seen only in Central Africa arrived in SW Florida-my back yard,and no where else in our neighbourhood-most likely from the large number of Hurricanes that came in year 2005-just three years later,they are flourishing very well. Since I am an Orchidist, i did all the research- orchids must have come from Senegal and Congo.
If I live long enough, who knows, the Earth may even become FLAT.Arguments are well intentioned, but as we all know, politics and regional interests tend to skew it.The Earth and the Universe are such wonders,no living creature can stop, I am gong to see the Universe managing it, in spite of me, the humble man

Posted by: jayrkay | January 24, 2011 2:33 PM | Report abuse

~~As for temperature records:
http://www.skepticalscience.com/surface-temperature-measurements.htm~~

wvng,
The intermediate and advanced tabs at that link are especially good. Thanks.

Posted by: redhead1990 | January 24, 2011 1:59 PM | Report abuse

James Galbraith explains the Republican playbook on the Rachel Maddow show:

GALBRAITH: Well, what it means is that they are focusing their proposed cuts on, for example, transportation budgets so that, for example, they proposed a massive cut in the operations of the Washington subway system. Now, that`s going to have the effect -- one of two effects, either you have to cut the service dramatically or you have to raise the price.

If you rate either way, what would happen is that people who -- people would abandon the subway for the cars and the city would become far less livable than it is now. So, that scenario would play out in every major urban area in the country. It played out in New York and Boston, Philadelphia and Chicago -- every place that relies on mass transit.

The principle here would be, what they`re doing essentially is engaging in an ancient exercise they won a battle and now, they`re slaughtering the prisoners. This is a -- you know, something that was traditional in North America under the Aztecs, but is somewhat fallen in this sense.

HAYES: Well, I think may be dinged in our new civility era for the metaphor.

Posted by: PaloAlto4 | January 24, 2011 1:25 PM | Report abuse

@dalyplanet "After taking 50+ billion in on AGW research dollars there may be some bias in the science. There is a huge money creation machine potential in carbon credits, out of air so to speak, bigger than all of agriculture, depending on how it is done. I think we all need to know what the plan is and it's necessity before it starts."

There is also a well understood existing enormous money machine in the coal/petro chemical industry that funds the denier machine.

I really wonder how the denier crowd thinks science works. They seem to think there is vast money to be made by being wrong on the science, when in truth the core value and only path to success in science is by being substantively correct in one's scientific work so that your current work can be published in peer reviewed journals after review by experts in their field, and future work can be funded in a highly competitive work environment. Success in science comes from doing good science that stands up to expert scrutiny and ideally stands the test of time.

Success as a paid denier, otoh, depends on having the ability to throw up an endless series of smokescreens to confuse the public and the media in service of the bottom line interests of the wealthiest industries the world has ever know. Their list is long and ever growing:
http://climateprogress.org/2010/12/28/simple-rebuttals-to-denier-talking-points-with-links-to-the-full-climate-science/


As for temperature records:
http://www.skepticalscience.com/surface-temperature-measurements.htm

Posted by: wvng | January 24, 2011 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: ptgrunner: "the figures from the nonpartisan CBO are the best we have. I've seen only that conservatives SAY THEY do not believe the CBO projections."
-------------------------------------------
Well, the CBO has UNDER projected costs for gov entitlement programs by a factor of ~10X ever since the mid 60's. So, ANYONE that believes the CBO projections is either a) UTTERLY ignorant or, b) has an IQ < 40.

Posted by: illogicbuster | January 24, 2011 1:19 PM | Report abuse

dalyplanet,
Thanks for the response. I've never accused anyone of anything on this blog. And I don't you now. I assume you believe what you write. I'm just spending time here trying to get to the science in topic I'm interested in.

I dutifully went through the links you posted originally because I assumed that they would throw light on the original comment about retired or lost temperature data sites.

My employer couldn't care less about this issue, what I read, nor what I write here. I've got no dog in this hunt.

The change in the number of temperature monitoring site may indeed have occurred as you write (but your newest link also doesn't say the sites are missing just that their data isn't used in "data trend analysis"; that link's Summary for Policy Makers #4); however, that doesn't mean that this throws any useful light on the scientific process of investigating climate change. Since sites are known to be poorly situated wouldn't science-minded people applaud the rejection of data known to have a bias as that link suggests?

And, of course, a change in the use of temperature measuring site number for analyses certainly is not due to any nefarious reasons. Right? And you've never implied otherwise.

Just for a thought experiment, let's say we have no atmospheric temperature records at all. Is there any other scientific data that can be used to determine whether anthropogenic-based climate change is occurring?

Posted by: redhead1990 | January 24, 2011 1:17 PM | Report abuse

I've not seen ANY cost projections from conservatives on the PPACA; the figures from the nonpartisan CBO are the best we have. I've seen only that conservatives SAY THEY do not believe the CBO projections. And of course, they've called this health care reform socialism, a giant takeover of the healthcare system (2010 lie of the year according to Politifact) and ranted about "death panels." It's difficult to have an honest debate when conservatives are not intellectually honest about the issues. But honesty is not what the GOP/Tea Party/conservatives are about.

The same (as above) could mostly be said about climate change and global warming if one substitutes "IPCC" for "CBO". "global warming" for "health care." The manner in which conservatives deny the science and economics behind the conclusions reached by people who actually researched these issues is dishonest. Skepticism can be a good thing, except when it results in the blind disbelief that conservatives manifest. Rather skepticism should make a person a better citizen, one that questions, but also finds the best available information on proposed policy. One might go to http://cboblog.cbo.gov/ (or Skeptical Science), for example.

There seem to be three things preventing conservatives from becomes progressives: 1) a decent education; 2) an open mind; and C) honesty. Do conservatives really believe that naming the bill to repeal the PPACA the "Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act" is honest? There is no evidence that jobs will be killed--it seems likely that providing health care to 32 million more people will create more jobs.

Posted by: ptgrunner | January 24, 2011 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Global warming is a luddite/enviro attack on technology

It is a total crap pseudo-scientific posture with no basis in reality.

There is not a climate condition listed that is in extreme of various past periods of time.......before suv/technology/scared luddites

Do global warming worries as a hobby if you must do it at all and let the real world move forward

Posted by: georgedixon1 | January 24, 2011 12:48 PM | Report abuse

I do not think that the earths temp runs on a thermostat man can control.

Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 12:46 PM | Report abuse

For Tom Tole 2011 Inaugural Cartoon Caption Contest:

(Thinking) "535 sharks!!! Don't recall even one in Tom Hanks' "Castaway!"

Thanks.

Posted by: da11231 | January 24, 2011 12:43 PM | Report abuse

For Tom Tole 2011 Inaugural Cartoon Caption Contest:

(Thinking) "535 sharks!!! Don't recall even one in Tom Hanks' "Castaway!"

Thanks.

Posted by: da11231 | January 24, 2011 12:42 PM | Report abuse

No one truly KNOWS what changes may/may not occur with regards to the global climate.

It would be prudent to reduce our carbon emissions. Unfortunately, we have no honest to goodness leadership in this country. If we did, we would be reducing coal usage (our President is a coal proponent), pushing nat. gas vehicles (1/2 emissions of gas), creating new nuclear power plants, and pushing tree planting.

We have no leadership, here. Only fingerpointing and political posing.

BTW, electric vehicles powered by coal burning plants and pulling heavy bateries around is NOT environmentally beneficial.

Posted by: primegrop | January 24, 2011 12:36 PM | Report abuse

redhead

I have been accused of being a paid shill for big oil,coal, power and I am not at all. I manage rental property.

I am wanting to be clear here with you. Are you employed by an interested party to this debate? I do appreciate your clear discussion.

This link is not peer reviewed but does state clearly factual information. The reduction in temperature measuring stations has reduced from 6000+ to about 1200 since the mid 1990s.

http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/surface_temp.pdf

Any of you that have an interest in climate should read this report. The local airport here is part of the official global average temperature. The city has grown around it. The low temperature from a few days ago was 9 degrees warmer than a rural one 7 miles away. Today the low was 2 degrees warmer.

My concern or question is, Since satellite temperature measurement can confirm global temperature with millions of data points why is GISS etc. basing their global temperature assessment on a diminishing group of terrestrial stations.

From a link posted from this thread today.
http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/news/20110112/

"The unusual cold in the past two winters has caused scientists to begin to speculate about a potential connection to sea ice changes."

Don't you think an editorial and inflammatory comment in a NASA posting reduces their credibility and shows some bias or agenda? Guess and maybe is not science.

There is a growing chorus thinking that natural variability in ocean currents is the cause of arctic warming as it is a rather singular hotspot and probably entirely responsible for 2010 warming. Why is this warm current not seeing any notation in the NASA report.

I do not doubt 150 years of temp data only about the last 10%. After taking 50+ billion in on AGW research dollars there may be some bias in the science. There is a huge money creation machine potential in carbon credits, out of air so to speak, bigger than all of agriculture, depending on how it is done. I think we all need to know what the plan is and it's necessity before it starts.


Posted by: dalyplanet | January 24, 2011 12:36 PM | Report abuse

For Tom Tole 2011 Inaugural Cartoon Caption Contest:

(Thinking) "535 sharks!!! Don't recall even one in Tom Hanks' "Castaway!"

Thanks.
Dinesh Agarwal

Posted by: da11231 | January 24, 2011 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Ok, PrairieDog60, lets say everyone has an electric vehicle. Now where does the electric come from?? If you say from the 'wall plug', then, back down the transmission lines to coal, natural gas and petroleum power plants and some hydro-electric. America has plenty of coal and natural gas (developed and even more undeveloped resources). Then there are nuclear power plants, which is the future of electric power, should America build more nuclear power plants. You say now we have nuclear waste (spent cores). The Federal Government shut down all commercial American re-processing plants 40 years ago, so we have to store nuclear waste and not reprocess to recover fissionable elements/isotopes. Only the Federal Government have operational re-processing plants to produce Plutonium for weapons.

Now exactly what are 'alternative, renewable energies'? Wind and Solar are nice, but don't have the capacity and are way too costly using present technology. The Sun doesn't shine continuously (at night and when it snows during 'global warming' periods)and the wind doesn't always blow.

Posted by: Xman2 | January 24, 2011 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Isn't the term "denier" on par w/ "blood libel?" Are you an anti-semite Toles like your paper so crudely tried to brand Palin? The CBO numbers are garbage. No mention of the "doctor fix" that was quietly extended another year that based on that alone destroys the president's made up savings numbers? HACK

Posted by: j751 | January 24, 2011 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Toles wrote:

News before it happen! Yes, that's what you will find here in my little corner of the webiverse. Why, it wasn't more than...well, exactly two weeks ago that I predicted in a blog post that the Republicans would turn on the Congressional Budget Office because the facts and evidence were getting altogether in the way of their bug-eyed story-telling about the health-care law.

-----------------------

I don't get too upset w/Toles when he excoriates the Conservatives. However, it would be wise if he actually checked his facts on the simple stuff. To whit, the GOP has been challenging the CBO numbers for 18 months; this is no revelation that Toles predicted out of thin air.

Drink water Toles; think before you write something that will embarrass yourself.

Posted by: pararanger22 | January 24, 2011 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I see that libs are too uneducated to be able to read graphs.

Posted by: illogicbuster | January 24, 2011 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I love the cartoons! Makes for a good debate! I think rexreddy in his 11:12am post, just about summed it up!!

With the freezing temperatures, snow and ice (in Atlanta and the South even) the scary snowman and snow fort in the cartoon will stay around for a while . . . until the Spring thaw, should it actually warm up!!

Yah, 'garbage in equals garbage out'. Let's face it, this Administration, and the past Democratic Congress (since 2007 as a majority) has no credibility with anyone who has been watching!! How much has your health care policy increased and how much of your previous benefits have been reduced since ObamaCare? The Proof is the Proof!!

Posted by: Xman2 | January 24, 2011 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Wow Tom, you really brought out the denier's ire with this one today.

A couple questions folks...

1) Much of the rest of the world is working on developing alternative, renewable energies with an eye toward getting off fossil fuels, which are increasingly more expensive, harder to find, require wars to secure, and create environmental disasters (Gulf of Mexico) when things go wrong. Why are you in favor of trailing countries like Denmark, Germany, Japan, and others in this realm?

2) Fossil fuels are finite. They will run out. Most researchers not funded by fossil fuel interests will tell you that they (most specifically, oil) may already be at the point where supplies will only decrease from this point on, driving prices through the roof. Why are you willing to wait until we're in a critically short of oil stage to start building the sustainable economy mentioned in question 1? It would be much smarter to start now while we still have relatively cheap oil. Imagine building any type of transmission lines or power plants with gasoline and diesel at $10 or $20 a gallon.

3) The vast majority of the world's climate scientists have found that global warming is indeed caused by our use of fossil fuels. Let's say that rather than more than 90% of them agreeing (which is the reality), it's only 60%. Even if only 6 out of 10 doctors told you that you were going to die unles you did something about it, what would you do?

4) Because the Earth's climate has changed in the past (and usually very slowly, over thousands of years), does that mean we should go ahead and change it drastically over, say, one hundred years? Why not stop or slow this change if we can; especially when the result will be the loss of millions of acres of land to the sea, the migration of tropical diseases farther toward the poles, the loss of millions of species, and the loss of many human lives due to food production loss, disease, displacement, and lack of fresh water?

If all you're worried about is how it will hurt the economy, try out some of those effects mentioned in question 4 on the economy and see what you get.

Without a healthy and sustaining environment, there is no such thing as an economy.

Posted by: PrairieDog60 | January 24, 2011 11:36 AM | Report abuse

I see that the uneducated AGW acolytes have crawled out of the caves.

So, based on this scientific data:
http://www.lakepowell.net/sciencecenter/geologic%20global%20temp.jpg

Do you think that the Earth, in the next major climate cycle, with or without civilization will:

A) Get warmer
B) Get cooler
C) Stay about the same

Posted by: illogicbuster | January 24, 2011 11:21 AM | Report abuse

In the fossil record there are cycles where the earth is completely devoid of ice.
In the fossil record there are cycles where the earth is completely covered with ice.
These are repeating cyclical stages totally unhindered by human intervention.
The current point in the cycle is approaching the apex in a thermal maximum swing.
There is nothing you can do about it.
You can prepare your descendants for the next swing which will be towards thermal minimum.

It will get a little hotter and there is nothing you can do about it.
Then it will get a lot colder and there is nothing you can do about it.

You are just a hairless ape with a cell phone.

The best thing you can do to save your kind is stop making so many more little hairless apes than you have the ability to feed.
Wrap that rascal and take your pills!

Posted by: rexreddy | January 24, 2011 11:12 AM | Report abuse

I'm a conservative, but that doesn't mean I'm a scatterbrained nutcake like these pretend to be and call themselves republica conservatives. Name theft is another one of these extremist radical right winger crimes if anyone asks me.

Since these fruitcakes came on scene seemingly from some deep dark hole in the bowels of slime with their full of bull propaganda machine driven by Fauxnus, I was forced to make the decision resign from the GOP or wallow in pig slop with them. So I resigned.

No decent conservative wants their name eveb remotely attached to these extreme radaical right wing human misfits either; at least none of the conservatives I know do.

And if their goal is to bring down shame on this nation and it's citizenry, they have attained their goal.

.

Posted by: thomas_pearson46 | January 24, 2011 11:09 AM | Report abuse

It's not global warming...it's climate change with extreme hot and cold pattern!!!!

Posted by: SA-Town | January 24, 2011 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Wow, now global warming is the DeMint and Inhofe's fault. I don't suppose that China's use of oil and coal, or this country's insistence upon driving large SUV's (many sporting Obama stickers) along with a total addiction to oil has anything to do with global warming, would it?
Geeze. Your bias is showing. Instead of whining about the "Evil Empire" why don't you offer up some solutions, or tell us what you're doing to slow or stop global warming?

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
Wow! Don’t you think you are being a bit harsh on Mr. Toles?
It’s not his job to save the world.
Even the newsprint that the paper is printed on has a huge carbon footprint and ecological effect.
His function is to look at current events and draw something funny.
Funny?...... Well maybe a little juvenile sarcasm is all he can muster today.
Just leave him alone.
Everybody has a bad day once in a while.
His boss probably stuffed the topic down his throat.

How do you draw something funny about a scheme to financially destroy America by throttling back the nation’s use of energy with regulation and extra taxes?
If C02 was such a wonderful gas for insulating the planet, then they would put it in between double pane windows. Now wouldn’t they?
What do they use for that?; -Nitrogen or Argon right?
Oh my goodness! The air is made up of 70% nitrogen!
And that nasty water vapor in clouds.
That’s a much bigger percentage by volume than that .02 percent that is C02!
We have to get rid of all that nitrogen and water vapor! Right now!
Or we will become the next Venus!
Yeah right!
Ya….. JACKWAGON!
You silly little hairless apes better worry about surviving the next ice age!
Because unlike global warming, Ice ages are real and cyclical!

Posted by: rexreddy | January 24, 2011 10:32 AM | Report abuse

To the "it's cold so what's with the global warming BS" crowd, a reminder that it is cold here because it is unusually warm in the Arctic, not that they will listen.

According to NOAA’s 2010 Arctic Report Card: "There continues to be significant excess heat storage in the Arctic Ocean at the end of summer due to continued near-record sea ice loss. There is evidence that the effect of higher air temperatures in the lower Arctic atmosphere in fall is contributing to changes in the atmospheric circulation in both the Arctic and northern mid-latitudes. … Recent data analysis and modeling suggest a link between loss of sea ice and a shift to an increased impact from the Arctic on mid-latitude climate. … With future loss of sea ice, such conditions as winter 2009-2010 could happen more often. Thus we have a potential climate change paradox. Rather than a general warming everywhere, the loss of sea ice and a warmer Arctic can increase the impact of the Arctic on lower latitudes, bringing colder weather to southern locations.” (http://tinyurl.com/2damqfj)

Posted by: wvng | January 24, 2011 10:13 AM | Report abuse

dalyplanet,
Thanks for the 10 (all working) links. I was looking for information to address what was posted earlier: “Do you know that in the last dozen years that 75% of temperature recording stations have been "retired" and all previous modern raw data has been "lost" leaving only "adjusted" data available.”

Nothing in this peer-review science applied. I was looking for evidence for this claim because it suggests that meteorological data are not available to track modern temperature trends when I thought, in general, that they are.

Here’s what the links involved that I could access (7 of the 10):
www.mi.uni-hamburg.de/fileadmin/fnu-files/publication/tol/RM7422.pdf
No temperature sensor data were questioned in this paper.

www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2002/2002GL014825.shtml
Only an abstract, published 2002, is available since a subscription is required.

www.colorado.edu/geography/blanken/PDF%20Copies%20of%20my%20papers/Unresloved%20issues%20with%20the%20assessment%20of%20multidecedal%20global%20land%20surface%20temperature%20trends.pdf
Big file from 2007 that one of the authors has on his own site: indicts nighttime temperature as a means of evaluating warming but again does not mention missing recording stations etc.

journals.ametsoc.org/doi/full/10.1175/1520-0442%281999%29012%3C1524%3ATEODGO%3E2.0.CO%3B2
A 1999 paper: shows how standard deviations in 3 to 10 day aver. temp. data are determined. No mention of retired data stations.

journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/BAMS-88-6-913
Finally got this one through a subscription but it doesn’t deal with temp but instead wind measurement & does not address removed sites.

www.fel.duke.edu/~scafetta/pdf/physicstoday2009b.pdf
Consists solely of 2009 letters to the editor—indeed a discussion of peer-reviewed climate change data—but does not mention any temperature site removals.

www.int-res.com/articles/cr2004/26/c026p159.pdf
The easiest to read (2004) and the conclusions particularly interesting but again no mention of temperature site loss.

www.world-economics-journal.com/Contents/ArticleOverview.aspx?ID=290
Only an abstract, published 2007, available since a subscription is required but this economic journal doesn’t appear to be peer-reviewed beyond an editorial board, but I could be wrong.

multi-science.metapress.com/content/9013721464pv71mr/
A 2009 abstract only, but appears to involve policy decision making, not temperature data disappearance.

And science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/1997/essd06oct97_1/
Is an article from 13 years ago, talks satellite “thermometers”, and has no bearing.

So there’s nothing here that bears on the initial and surprising post:
“Do you know that in the last dozen years that 75% of temperature recording stations have been "retired" and all previous modern raw data has been "lost" leaving only "adjusted" data available.”

Posted by: redhead1990 | January 24, 2011 10:08 AM | Report abuse

97% of the population that has actually studied climate is in agreement: man is contributing to global warming. The 3% that disagrees is overwhelmingly funded by big oil and dirty coal.

And the goobers claim we are being hoodwinked. What could be more funny?

Posted by: dennis_donaghey | January 24, 2011 9:42 AM | Report abuse

The message I got is that anyone who doesn't agree with Toles' beliefs regarding this theory is a Nazi. Wow, doesn't that aid the President in civil discussion. Just imagine all the different topics in which Toles can use this implication. Not imaginative, not true, and not polite. Global warming is not the equivalent of the Holocaust.

Posted by: kalahun | January 24, 2011 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Tommy the tool now takes up global warming...........hahahahahaha. What a liberal fool..week after week.

Posted by: steelers01 | January 24, 2011 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Yo Tom,

They have already manufactured a fake scandal, the debt ceiling. Every time our Congress votes to cut taxes or increase spending, the consequences are to increase the deficit. But they’ve disembodied the deficit so it’s not tied to the actions that create it.

The Democrats should not allow the budget to get passed without a matching increase in the debt ceiling. Truth and Consequences must go together.

Posted by: EarlyBird1 | January 24, 2011 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Yo Tom,

They have already manufactured a fake scandal, the debt ceiling. Every time our Congress votes to cut taxes or increase spending, the consequences are to increase the deficit. But they’ve disembodied the deficit so it’s not tied to the actions that create it.

The Democrats should not allow the budget to get passed without a matching increase in the debt ceiling. Truth and Consequences must go together.

Posted by: EarlyBird1 | January 24, 2011 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Toles

Don't you know it is no linger global warming it is climate change because some regions are cooling.

It is time to stop debating warming and time to say "hey stop crapping up our drinking water and the ground we grow crops in"

It would be nice for the hippies to stop fighting nuclear power in this country and for us to join the rest of the modern 1st world.

Posted by: flonzy1 | January 24, 2011 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Toles is a liberal by rote. That is to say, he is extremely boring and unfunny. kjj

Posted by: drewmean | January 24, 2011 7:03 AM | Report abuse

What a knee slapper and sorely needed around DC after 60 days of well below normal temperatures and this morning being the coldest morning of the year with arctic cold temps busting water main pipes flooding interstate 95 and stranding drivers. This arctic cold weather just makes a guy want to go out this morning to a farmers market to save the planet by buying local. Do you think they'll be selling frozen vegetables there?

Posted by: billybeer6 | January 24, 2011 6:37 AM | Report abuse

Global warming advocacy is a precious waste of time and energy. The rest of the world are using modern high tech diesel engines with almost no pollution that get 60+ mpg.

Detroit wants to sell us solar powered cars - dependent on batteries that cost $40,000 - and can only go 100 miles on one charge. The rest of the world is laughing at us, while saving a bundle on diesel engines.

California and our beloved EPA's Lisa Jackson won't let us use diesels for the sake of zero pollution. She has zero brains.

Posted by: alance | January 24, 2011 1:18 AM | Report abuse

You said that the Republicans were heavy handed. How did we get Obamacare except by the heavy handed action of a Democrat majority that used every political trick in the book to ram Obamacare down the throat of the populace who said that they didn't want it?

Posted by: thevenables42 | January 23, 2011 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Pandora's box was opened- We survived.

Octomom gave birth - they all survived.

We disarmed the Wall Street loan sharks.

After waiting with baited breath, unemployment dropped.

We didn't touch your junk.

Posted by: stevetew | January 23, 2011 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Wow, now global warming is the DeMint and Inhofe's fault. I don't suppose that China's use of oil and coal, or this country's insistence upon driving large SUV's (many sporting Obama stickers) along with a total addiction to oil has anything to do with global warming, would it?
Geeze. Your bias is showing. Instead of whining about the "Evil Empire" why don't you offer up some solutions, or tell us what you're doing to slow or stop global warming?

Posted by: steves_59 | January 23, 2011 9:39 PM | Report abuse

In case anyone's curious, 2010 tied with 2005 for the hottest year on record since modern instrumentation began keeping track in 1880:

http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/news/20110112/

Republicans Jim DeMint and James Inhofe should be put in prison for what they are doing to your kids' and grandkids' planet.

Posted by: B2O2 | January 23, 2011 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Ain't that the Disgusting TRUTH!
Sigh!

Posted by: lufrank1 | January 23, 2011 9:04 PM | Report abuse

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