I don’t want to get into the whole “global warming / climate change” topic TOO much now, because I am still planning a series of posts about it. But, I thought this article in Germany’s Der Spiegel was worth bringing up.

According to studies by the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research in Great Britain (known for being strongly pro-global warming), “the world grew warmer by 0.07 degrees Celsius from 1999 to 2008 and not by the 0.2 degrees Celsius assumed” by UN studies. After adjustments for “El Niño and La Niña, the resulting temperature trend is reduced to 0.0 degrees Celsius — in other words, a standstill.” How embarrassing! And somewhat ironic that these findings have been published so close to December’s UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

Climate Change "Standstill" Graphs

One very interesting concession is that “Even though the temperature standstill probably has no effect on the long-term warming trend, it does raise doubts about the predictive value of climate models….” For one thing, the validity of the whole “global average temperature” concept is questionable, given that the weather/climate system of the planet is so complex. Although there are over 500 weather stations in the global temperature-monitoring network (mostly erected in the past couple decades, as I recall), there are still blind-spots like the “Arctic hole”. So, our readings are, at best, incomplete.

As meteorologist Mojib Latif of the Leibniz Institute (and others) points out, “We have to explain to the public that greenhouse gases will not cause temperatures to keep rising from one record temperature to the next, but that they are still subject to natural fluctuations.” There are many natural factors — e.g., cyclic ocean currents, volcanic eruptions, solar activity, etc. — and scientists like Latif differ in opinion as to which has had the biggest affect on the recent stagnation. But, perhaps such candor is a sign of a corner being turned in the global warming / climate change debate?…

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