Monday, December 6, 2010

Global Warming Has Stopped

A year ago tomorrow, just before the opening of the UN Copenhagen world climate summit, the British Meteorological Office issued a confident prediction. The mean world temperature for 2010, it announced, 'is expected to be 14.58C, the warmest on record' - a deeply worrying 0.58C above the 1961 1990 average.

World temperatures, it went on, were locked inexorably into an everrising trend: 'Our experimental decadal forecast confirms previous indications that about half the years 2010-2019 will be warmer than the warmest year observed so far - 1998.'

Met Office officials openly boasted that they hoped by their statements to persuade the Copenhagen gathering to impose new and stringent carbon emission limits - an ambition that was not to be met.

Last week, halfway through yet another giant, 15,000delegate UN climate jamboree, being held this time in the tropical splendour of Cancun in Mexico, the Met Office was at it again.

Never mind that Britain, just as it was last winter and the winter before, was deep in the grip of a cold snap, which has seen some temperatures plummet to minus 20C, and that here 2010 has been the coolest year since 1996.

Globally, it insisted, 2010 was still on course to be the warmest or second warmest year since current records began.

But buried amid the details of those two Met Office statements 12 months apart lies a remarkable climbdown that has huge implications - not just for the Met Office, but for debate over climate change as a whole.

Read carefully with other official data, they conceal a truth that for some, to paraphrase former US Vice President Al Gore, is really inconvenient: for the past 15 years, global warming has stopped.


This isn't meant to be happening. Climate science orthodoxy, as promulgated by bodies such as the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit (CRU), says that temperatures have risen and will continue to rise in step with increasing CO2 in the atmosphere, and make no mistake, with the rapid industrialisation of China and India, CO2 levels have kept on going up


Actually, with the exception of 1998 - a 'blip' year when temperatures spiked because of a strong 'El Nino' effect (the cyclical warming of the southern Pacific that affects weather around the world) - the data on the Met Office's and CRU's own websites show that global temperatures have been flat, not for ten, but for the past 15 years.

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  1. Bullshit. The last decade is the hottest on record.

    Of course, even if this article was right about temperatures (and it isn't), it still ignores the other disastrous consequences of pumping endless CO2 into the air.

    To give one example, we are acidifying the entire ocean, which has been absorbing much of our CO2 output. This is extremely dangerous, as it poses a threat to phytoplankton (half our oxygen supply), coral reefs and fish (essential to our food supply) and other vital organisms. That's an absolute irrefutable fact, regardless of temperatures.

  2. 1. Warming *has not* stopped for the last 15 years. A fact easily seen with even a casual look at the actual temperatures for the last 20 years: NCDC Global Temperature Anomaly 1990 through 2010 61 month moving average and linear trend.

    2. The 'no warming in 15 years' meme among AGW "skeptics" is a blatant mis-representation of Professor Phil Jones' BBC interview several months ago where he stated in reply to a question about statistically significant warming since 1995 that there *had* been warming (0.12C per decade) but that 15 years just wasn't long enough to make the trend statistically significant at the 95% confidence level (it was around 93% - close but not quite 95%). And as it happens - 16 years *is* statistically significant. In fact, just adding the several months of data since the interview has raised the statistical significance since 1995 past the 95% threshold.

    It was a statement about how much data was needed to reach statistical significance, not a statement that there had been no warming in 15 years.

    3. Isn't it interesting how David Rose and the Daily Mail have refused to publish any comments on that article. They know his story would get blown out of the water if people were allowed to actually point out the lies being promulgated in it in comments.


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