By JR on Thursday, March 27, 2014
A naive survey
James Lawrence Powell has recently updated his survey of academic journal articles concerned with climate. And he concludes that: "10,883 out of 10,885 scientific articles agree: Global warming is happening, and humans are to blame".
I have probably said most of what can be said about all that on some previous occasion but perhaps a recap of the basics might still be useful.
His big mistake is to get his taxonomy wrong. Taxonomy is the first step in science but not, apparently, for James Lawrence Powell. He just does not realize that most climate skeptics would fall into his "believer" category!
The great majority of climate skeptics accept that a warming response to CO2 is a reasonable theory so they don't get detected as skeptics by James Lawrence Powell. Where most climate skeptics differ from the hysterics is in estimating the magnitude of the warming effect. Skeptics say that Greenies greatly overestimate and exaggerate any possible effects of CO2 buildup.
I myself can see theoretical grounds for expecting that CO2 buildup will have a warming effect but those same theoretical grounds lead me to believe that the effect will be so minute as to be probably undetectable.
And that is what we find. CO2 and temperature each go their own merry way quite independently of one-another. Temperature does vary at times in response to various natural causes (mostly solar) but a response to CO2 is not detectable.
The most glaring example of that is of course the temperature standstill of the last 17 years while atmospheric CO2 has steadily been rising. The two variables are clearly uncoupled.
Pumping out exaggerated cries of alarm is of course what Greenies do so the fact that they have chosen just about the most alarming figure possible for the influence of CO2 on temperature should surprise no-one. Reality eventually trashes most of their wild claims however and this is no exception.
Just for a bit of fun, have a look at the graph below. It is two excerpts from the temperature record. The IPCC says that human influence did not begin until 1950 -- so temperature variations before that must be due to natural influences. Yet the slopes of the two graphs are virtually identical. So if one can be all natural, why is the other not natural too? -- JR
The full graph is here. AMO is a running index of North Atlantic temperatures from NOAA.