AP shatters myth of recent global cooling … science triumphs

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

Just over the weekend, my inbox was filled with a discussion attacking climate science with assertions that “none of the models predicted the current cooling period” and, therefore, the entire concept of Global Warming rests on very shaky grounds.

Sigh …

Those involved in that discussion have now received links to an excellent article by AP science reporter Seth Borenstein.  That article, Impact: Statisticians reject global cooling, merits praise because it is an excellent of inventive investigative journalism on a very public issue.

In the face of claims of cooling appearing in multiple venues and gaining visibility (such as via the truthiness-laden pages of Superfreakonomics (see here and here and, well, tens of other sites/posts )), being a centerpiece of misrepresentations by George Will and others, Borenstein decided to put metereological data under the searing examination of statisticians unaware of the data stream that they were seeing.

Berenstein (okay, “the AP”) gave the data to four statisticians and asked them to analyze the data.  The result:

the experts found no true temperature declines over time.

Without knowing what the data referred to, one statistician called it “cherry-picking” to assert that there was any sort of statistically meaningful ‘cooling trend’.

“If you look at the data and sort of cherry-pick a micro-trend within a bigger trend, that technique is particularly suspect,” said John Grego, a professor of statistics at the University of South Carolina.

The statisticians’ basic point: the starting date is key. If you play games and have 1998 as “the” starting point, there is a minor cooling in the intervening years. (Actually, not a cooling but a slight retreating, writ large, from very high temperatures.)

choosing a starting date can alter perceptions. Using the skeptics’ satellite data beginning in 1998, there is a “mild downward trend,”  But doing that is “deceptive.” The trend disappears if the analysis starts in 1997. And it trends upward if you begin in 1999

Borenstein almost certainly will receit hateful (vitriolic) notes from deniers, self-proclaimed skeptics, and other anti-science syndrome sufferers who are unhappy with the results of a scientifically-sound path toward testing a hypothesis. Their loudly proclaimed hypothesis of a cooling globe since 1998 has, yet again, been tested and found wanting of a substantive basis.

Seth Borenstein: highly recommend reading.

See also:  Brenden Demelle, DeSmogBlog, Statisticians Confirm: No Global Cooling Despite Skeptic Spin; Joe Romm, Must Read AP Story,


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  1. It is or ought to be practically self-evident that you cannot add a QUADRILLION pounds of anything to the atmosphere over the course of two hundred years and not have it make a difference. If anybody tells you that CO2 is not pollution, ask them to stick their head in a plastic bag for about ten minutes and re-breathe their own CO2 byproduct. Then ask them again about CO2 pollution, if you can revive them from a near death experience.

    The ignorance of the AGH Denialistas seems willful and wanton to me. Sort of like creationists who can’t get over the fact that the book of Genesis in the Bible is a myth-story.

  2. Great article, great diary. Very appreciated

  3. My concern is the proposed “remedies” that are being used to supposedly combat global climate change.

    The whole thing about “cap and trade“, and imposing new taxes (paid to some International body) not only fails to solve the problem, but creates yet another ponzi-scheme ripoff for the American citizen.  It is also an unconstitutional model for us to be paying taxes to authorities that “we the people” do not have direct representation over.

    Small businesses, and even individuals, can be penalized and encumbered, while the whole idea of the money being shipped to someplace where some trees have been planted to “offset” carbon usage is completely rife for corruption and fraud — especially in the hands of global authorities like the World Bank or the IMF or whoever is going to administer this thing. Just like with derivatives swaps and securities gimmicks, the people running the program will extract money and profit by it, at the expense of main street, small businesses, etc..

    Instead of a dumb taxation and global authority based model (which is really just another give us your money…you can “trust us” hoax), the real answers lie in invention.

    All the political energy and focus right now should be on inventing our way out of the problem.  With a major FDR-style push on solar, tidal, wind, and magnetic technolgies, the dead as doornails American Manufacturing base can been totally reawakened and reconstituted (which will help us enormously Economically), and we can then do things like get completely off the existing Electric Grid, drive Electic cars and hybrid with 100MPG performance, and build and renovate green energy office buildings, residential homes, government buildings, and public transportation systems.  Stopping Global Warfare is also imperative both from a pollution perspective and an economic cost perspective.

    The answer here is not through global authority and nest-feathering schemes.

    The answer is through invention and independence from Foreign Control of energy, as well as dependency on domestic fossile fuels.

    Cap and trade is not an answer.

    Invention and Manufacturing is.

    The first hurts our Economy and defrauds consumers.

    The second brings back real sustainable growth, and actually solves the problem.

  4. You spent time watching Al Gore’s most convienient ruse.  Take another 2 hours to watch David Wilcock’s presentation at http://www.projectcamelot.org.  I find David far more sincere,personable,caring,knowledgable,scientifically competent and free of conflicting financial interests in his explanation of how a spiritually aware human race would be beneficial.

    It is why globalized carbon trading induced poverty, swine flu eugenics and or continuity of government underground bases/FEMA dissident camps/quarrantine centers are not really the most benevolent choices for survival of the human race at this time.

    You can take your carbon footprint and shove it up your non-compliant corpo-fascist frisk my wife and get me off the Homeboy Security no work list ass.  How is that for teabagger CT tin foil tazer and VMAD my ass G20 swine eleven douchebaggery.  

    No I don’t know an Amish family, I could live with far less plastic, 300 channels of Satan inspired mind numbing crap, cancer causing microwave cell phones,chemically synthesized frankenfoods, frankenmeds but given the blind worship of all things big Al Gore and his instrumental destruction of all American manufacturing capacity I am going to cease recycling and pour my old oil from my HEMI eight cylinder engine right back into the water supply just because it might piss you off.

  5. deniers are getting shot down. However if the corporate government continues to consider the problem something that can be ‘fixed’ with cap swaps and blowing off mountain tops, and continuing with their absolutely insane fossil fuel wars  it’s kind of like the mine shaft gap scene scene in Dr. Strangelove. You can’t have it both ways, if global warming is a fact and it is, then why is the folly and myth of life style, profits, economics, and ‘free market’ capitalism allowed to trump reality? The most absurd to me was turn in your clunker and get a new earth destroyer. Why protect the very dinsaurs that are accelerating global warming. A huge disconnect much like the health care insanity, where profit for extortionists and drug pushers becomes the issue rather then anyones health. So even if everyone accepts this as fact what good does it do when our government is more concerned with keeping wealth where it is then our survival? Nature doesn’t give a rats ass about capitalism and profits.              

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