Global Warming Alarmism Denies Sound Science

Global Warming Alarmism Denies Sound Science
November 22, 2013

James M. Taylor

James M. Taylor is senior fellow for environment and energy policy at The Heartland Institute, and... (read full bio)

Sound science dealt several devastating blows to global warming alarmism during the past few weeks, despite the best efforts of global-warming activists to sustain the drumbeat of climate fear.

Attempting to drum up fear about global warming in the San Antonio Express-News, Andrew Dressler and Gerald North wrote an Oct. 6 article titled, “Climate change is real and denial is not about the science.” In their article they claimed political ideology rather than scientific evidence motivates skepticism toward their assertions of a global warming crisis.

In reality, sound science continues to deliver blow after blow to claims of a global warming crisis.

On September 17, the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change released Climate Change Reconsidered II: Physical Science (CCR-2), containing more than 1,000 pages of scientific research indicating global warming is not an impending crisis. Forty-seven scientists contributed to CCR-2, presenting nearly 5,000 citations of peer-reviewed studies exposing flaws in global warming alarmism.

The following week, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its Fifth Assessment Report, which backtracks on many prior IPCC predictions and contradicts many of the most frequent assertions made by global warming activists. The IPCC report contradicts claims that global warming is causing more extreme weather, acknowledges global warming is occurring more slowly than the IPCC previously predicted, predicts less future warming than previous IPCC reports, and admits the lack of global warming this century defies nearly all computer models that predict rapid future warming.

Several peer-reviewed studies published during recent weeks reinforced the lack of a global warming crisis. For example, a study in the peer-reviewed Nature Climate Change reported global warming is occurring more slowly than what was predicted by 114 of 117 climate models relied on by the IPCC and other government agencies. Real-world warming is occurring at merely half the pace projected by most climate models, the study found.

The peer-reviewed Geophysical Research Letters reported Earth is undergoing substantial greening as a result of higher carbon dioxide levels and more-favorable weather conditions. Plant life is flourishing, and foliage is becoming more prevalent all across the globe as Earth warms, with the most impressive gains observed in arid regions bordering deserts. The western United States is among the big winners, with many regions in the U.S. West experiencing 30 percent or greater increases in foliage during the past 30 years.

Mother Nature punctuated these reports and peer-reviewed studies with several exclamation points. Global hurricane frequency is undergoing a long-term decline, with global hurricane and tropical storm activity at record lows during the past several years. The year 2013 tied an all-time record for the latest formation of any Atlantic hurricane.

The United States is benefiting from the longest period in recorded history without a major hurricane strike. Tornado activity is in long-term decline, with major tornado strikes (F3 or higher) showing a remarkable decline in recent decades. Nearly all locations included in the global soil moisture databank show long-term improvement, signaling a substantial decline in the frequency and severity of droughts.

Dressler and North attempt to divert attention away from these scientific facts by appealing to political leanings. They write, “If you are skeptical of the science of climate change, then you almost certainly oppose the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, and support gun rights.”

Attempting to connect climate alarmism with Obamacare and gun restrictions may help solidify support for global warming restrictions among political liberals, but it does nothing to address the scientific flaws in global warming alarmism. Dressler and North unwittingly illustrate the political prism through which they view the global warming issue.

Sound science—supported by objective, real-world data—indicates humans are not creating a global warming crisis. For some reason, Dressler and North consider this to be bad news.

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Craig Idso (nipcc_contact@nipccreport.org), Ph.D., is the founder and former president of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change and coeditor of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change. James M. Taylor (jtaylor@heartland.org) is senior fellow for environment policy at The Heartland Institute.

James M. Taylor

James M. Taylor is senior fellow for environment and energy policy at The Heartland Institute, and... (read full bio)