By John Distaso, Manchester Union Leader
Have Northeast winters grown dramatically warmer in the last 30 years? A researcher for the Union of Concerned Scientists says yes, emphatically. UNH researcher Dr. Cameron Wake’s findings of a four-degree increase from 1970 to 2000 have been cited in a congressional global warming hearing and contributed to UCS reports last year and this month that predicted huge changes ahead.
But a retired Boston meteorologist says the finding is the product of biased data selection. It is something the scientists group has been accused of before. “I can get anything I want out of the data, too, depending on what years I start and finish. That’s not rocket science,” said Dr. Fred Ward, longtime Channel 7 weatherman, now retired and living in New Hampshire,
Wake said last week his figures are accurate, the product of intense research of temperatures recorded by 75 government-sanctioned observation stations throughout the region. He said it was Ward’s research, using data from only 11 National Weather Service stations in New England, that was “shoddy.’’ Ward’s figures show winter temperatures have risen only two-tenths of a degree since the early 1970s. He compared the average temperature reported by the stations from 1971 to 1975 to the average temperature reported by the stations from 2001 to 2005.
See more of the debate here.
Icecap Comment: Cameron Wake’s analysis is meaningless. The data reflects in part the urban heat island effect of the growth of many small towns (Oke showed even a town of 1000 could have a heat island effect of 2C in winter). Fred’s analysis for the major cities is more meaningful. His 11 major first order stations already were urban in 1970. In any event, there is no doubt there has been some warming since the 1970s reflecting the 60-70 year cycles so obvious to anyone who really looks at the data objectively. This temperature cycle is due to natural cycles in the sun and oceans as we have shown here and others in many peer review papers, ignored by Wake, and advocacy groups like the so-called Union of Concerned Scientists.
In yet another case of bad journalism we are getting used to, CBS News proclaimed the UK floods this summer were the results of global warming. “CBS Evening News” Monday night correspondent Elizabeth Palmer, doing a report on the greatest floods in England since 1947, stated: “And Britain is going to have to get used to it. Research published today suggests human activity is warming the planet and changing rainfall patterns.”
The Daily Mail in the UK presented a more balanced picture. “ It was devastating. In only two hours, three times the average monthly rainfall drilled into swaths of southern England, moving north and wreaking havoc.” Follwing on the heels of the wettest June in 60 or more years in places, “...on Friday, the South West, Midlands and Yorkshire were hit by the second such downpour this month. It had been predicted but, to those caught up in them, the torrents that ran through the streets and flooded the countryside were no less catastrophic for that. To many, the black skies and fierce rains must have seemed an ominous portent of things to come: symptomatic of the environmental ravages of global warming. “
Weatherman John Kettley however sees it differently. “In my view, none of the severe weather we have experienced is proof of ‘climate change.’ It is just a poor summer - nothing more, nothing less - something that was the norm throughout most of the Sixties and has been repeated on several occasions more recently. Going further back, history also shows that 1912 was an atrocious summer. It was so bad, in fact, that we are still some way short of the torrential downpours that happened that year. It seemed particularly bad at the time because 1911 had been such an exceptionally good summer. So, taking a long view, there is a pattern of warming and cooling. The Edwardians were experiencing a period of significant warming (much like now) following a cold Victorian spell.
Dr. Fred Ward Op Ed in the Union Leader
In June, The New Hampshire Union Leader published a story “At mount (Cannon), talk is about global warming.” This article quoted some participants making statements like “winters with less snow and more rain,” without specific dates and data. It’s difficult to check fuzzy comments like that.
However, there was one data set quoted, “the average winter temperatures in the Northeast have increased 4.4 degrees since 1970,” which was a checkable piece of information. These same erroneous data were quoted in the Keene Sentinel last August, but in the context of a 4.4 degree increase in winter temperatures in New England. The Sentinel published my response stating that the actual change in winter temperature in New England, based on all 11 first-order National Weather Service stations in New England, from the early 1970s to the early 2000s, was a whopping two tenths of one degree!
A more interesting argument heard in New Hampshire is that the ski areas and the maple syrup industries are hurting because of global warming. Using skis and syrup to make the case that the temperature in New Hampshire has warmed substantially is disingenuous because the actual temperature data for New Hampshire are available. Why would you use ski and syrup data to measure temperature when the temperature data are easy to find? You could suspect that anyone using the ski and syrup data, rather than the temperature data, has already looked at the actual temperature data and found what I found, little or no warming, so they turned to skis and syrup. Interesting!
Finally, for those of you old enough to read in the 1970s, there was a lot of hysteria back then about the global temperature. The same “if we don’t act promptly, in 10 years it will be too late” statements were published, on the covers of reputable papers and magazines, by many of the same “scientists,” and for many of the same base motives. The only difference between the 1970s and now was that the disaster that was just around the corner was global cooling!
How times change, while people don’t. Is it global warming, political warming or globaloney?
Read full article here.
By Jennifer Marohasy
Snow on the Dandenongs and the heaviest falls on Mt Buller for seven years provide further proof of “Climate Change”, if not of global warming. Keeping that distinction in mind is a precondition for not being swindled.
A second line of defence against mumbo-jumbo is to recall that the philosopher Karl Popper promoted falsifiability as essential to the logic of scientific enquiry. He reasoned that any hypothesis which is so structured as to be incapable of refutation is pseudo-science. The “Climate-Change” band trumpets all data about rising temperatures as evidence to buttress their hypothesis. However, not so long ago they were perplexed by inconvenient truths such as the occasional severe winter. On the face of it, such cold snaps surely count against global warming? This is where the “Extreme Event” comes in handy.
The “Climate-Change” faithful now have the power to levitate above the embarrassment of awkward evidence. To deal with exceptions, they have conceived the metaphysical category of the “Extreme Event”. The “Extreme Event” is a device for ruling out the very possibility of contrary evidence and, thus, for denying the prospect of Popperian falsification.
The “Climate Change” sophists proceed thus: the anthropogenically-enhanced greenhouse effect does more than push up average temperatures. It also increases instability. So, while a denser greenhouse mostly makes the planet hotter/drier, it will also make it colder/wetter in some places at certain times.
If all swings in the weather are worshipped as manifestations of “Climate Change”, that hypothesis is elevated above the realm of rational enquiry. Read whole blog here.
By Craig Wood, Wood’s blog
I don’t know if you saw the articles over the weekend about a man by the name of Lewis Pugh who supposedly swam in 28 degree water at the North Pole to bring attention to global warming. This article from the Daily Mail states: The 36-year-old Londoner spent almost 19 minutes at minus 1.8C as he front crawled for a full kilometre - more than half a mile in the coldest water a human has ever swum.
The article does say that ” Only a few seconds in the icy depths would be enough to kill most mere mortals”. This man was in the water for almost 19 minutes wearing nothing but a speedo! Is that possible? And take a look at the next picture. I have never been to the North Pole but is it possible to see the curve of the horizon there? Doesn’t this picture look faked? Perhaps there is a camera lense that would produce this effect. I’d be interested in hearing comments from others on this.
If the event really did happen then I am very impressed with his feat but I am not sure why this would bring attention to global warming. As this article states, it is not unusual for there to be open water at the North Pole in the summer–global warming or not. This fact, of course, never made it into the news stories.
By Taylor Gandossy CNN
Excerpt from the interview:
I think that there has been friendly as well as unfriendly brainwashing taking place. And when I say friendly and unfriendly, I’m talking about decades of extremist views that have now achieved mainstream acceptance. And the No. 1 item among those affecting current oil politics in Washington is the boogeyman, also known as global warming.
I don’t accept it as established fact, nor do I accept that it would be caused by petroleum consumption, nor do I accept that the human species should not affect its environment. So even if it were someday to be shown to have some small effect on the environment, I see no crime. In fact, taking into account the many, many millions of people around the world that envy our way of life, it would seem more humanitarian to wish them the kind of plentiful petroleum products and vehicles ... that we enjoy ... to lift themselves out of [a] backward, poor way of life.
See the whole interview here.
By Tim Blair, Daily Telegraph, July 14, 2007
LAST month Australians endured our coldest June since 1950. Imagine that; all those trillions of tonnes of evil carbon we’ve horked up into the atmosphere over six decades of rampant industrialisation, and we’re still getting the same icy weather we got during the Cold War.
Not that June should be presented as evidence that global warming isn’t happening, or that we’re causing it. Relying on such a tiny sample would be unscientific and wrong, even if it nvolves an entire freakin’ continent’s weather patterns throughout the course of a whole month. No such foolishness will be indulged in here. Sadly, those who believe in global warming - and who would compel us also to believe - aren’t similarly constrained. A few hot days are all they ever need to get the global warming bandwagon rolling; evidently it’s solar powered. Here, for example, is an Australian Associated Press report on May’s weather, which in places was a little warmer than usual: “Climate change gave much of Australia’s drought-stricken east coast its warmest May on record, weather experts say. “Global warming and an absence of significant cold changes had driven temperatures well above the monthly average, said meteorologist Matt Pearce. According to Mr Pearce, May’s temperatures were “yet another sign of the widespread climate change that we are seeing unfold across the globe.”
If that’s the case, shouldn’t June’s cold weather - coldest since 1950, remember - be a sign that widespread climate change isn’t unfolding across the globe? We’re using the same data here; one month’s weather. And, in fact, the June sample is Australia-wide while May only highlights the east coast. Fear the dawn of a great “coldening”!
But climate change is like Michael Moore’s tracksuit - it can fit anyone. In 2005, Greenpeace rep Steven Guilbeault helpfully explained: “Global warming can mean colder, it can mean drier, it can mean wetter, that’s what we’re dealing with.” Read more of this story here.
By Anthony DiPalma, New York Times
By the end of this century, 100-year floods could hit New York City every 10 years, Long Island lobsters could disappear and New York apples could be hard to come by if nothing is done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to a report released yesterday by a group of scientists and economists.
“The Northeast can anticipate substantial — and often unwelcome or dangerous — changes during the rest of this century,” concluded the report by the Union of Concerned Scientists, which examined the impact of global warming on the region. “The very character of the Northeast is at stake.”
The report, which covers nine states, is the product of a two-year collaboration between the Union of Concerned Scientists, an advocacy group, and a team of several dozen independent scientists and economists. For full story go here.
Icecap Editor’s Note: This radical group looked at three climate models, chose the most extreme and asked scientists to evaluate what could happen if the forecasts were right. In that way, an advocacy group, headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts with a name that implies they are a credible scientific organization can make dire predictions that have the ring of having strong scientific support. Their projections are far more extreme than the IPCC. My suggestion is that you go to their site, download their report and use it to start your fire in the fireplace when it is really cold this winter.