I guess climate change is real after all

Published on February 27, 2008 by

I’ve been a bit of a skeptic when it comes to the warnings of environmentalists regarding catastrophic climate change, but this chart based on the temperature data over the past ten years shows that while there was a bit of stability during the first few years of this millennium, the long-term trend is strongly reasserting itself. 

climate_change 

The blue arrow to the right shows the change from January 2007 to January 2008–the largest one-year temperature change on record.  And it’s clear…

Wait a minute…

Boy, is my face red!  When I was getting the graphic ready to put on my website, I must have accidentally flipped it.  Here’s the correct version:

climate_change2

The largest one-year temperature change on record is the global cooling that happened from January 2007 to January 2008.

(And yes, I am smart enough to know that this temperature drop could very well be an anomaly, and that a long-term warming trend could reassert itself shortly.  I just couldn’t resist having a little fun with charts.)

Filed under: General

4 comments on “I guess climate change is real after all”

  1. jpd says:

    Of course, here’s another way of saying it: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/2007/

    That 2007 is the second warmest year on record. Ever. (well, on record). So it’s not even that a single year of cooling, which the data doesn’t actually appear to support the way that diagram purports to show, is a fluke. It’s that even given natural cooling factors, it’s getting hotter.

  2. > That 2007 is the second warmest year on record.

    Or the fifth warmest year on record:
    http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2008/20080115_warmest.html

    Boy, these climate scientists really ought to get their stories straight. It cannot be both the fifth warmest year on record and the second warmest year on record. At least one of the claims must be incorrect.

    I’m curious: if the NASA numbers had shown 2007 as the fifth warmest and the NOAA numbers had shown 2007 as the second warmest, would you still be touting the NASA numbers?

  3. jpd says:

    I appreciate your assault on my integrity. Particularly since you use the relatively insignificant disagreement over whether 2007 ranked 2nd or 5th in the “hottest years ever” category to skirt addressing the actual argument that follows from either result– that it’s getting hotter. I don’t mean to lump you into a category, but that type of argument comes up alot in the conservative anti-science community. It’s the same argument I hear from creationists: if there’s any disagreement over any details in evolution, it means there’s disagreement about the theory itself. But that assault doesn’t stand up to logical scrutiny, and ad hominem attacks won’t repair its holes.

  4. Forgive me for being cynical about the way alarmists love to tout the 2nd-warmest numbers but not the 5th-warmest numbers. If, as you say, the difference is insignificant, why not tout them both?

    You are incorrect to say that “it’s getting hotter” follows from 2007 being the 5th hottest year on record. “It’s hotter than it used to be” follows, so you can use it as evidence that the earth has warmed. However, if the NOAA numbers are correct, then the fact that several recent years have been hotter than 2007 better fits a leveling off or cooling trend than a continued warming one.

    Now, I don’t mean to lump you into a category, but among climate alarmists I see a lot of absolute, unwavering faith that the world is still getting hotter no matter what the numbers over the last decade have shown.