The Associated Press is covering the Climate beat and the main topic is the troublesome fact that the climate has not gotten warmer in the last 15 years. This ought to be met with elation and reevaluation but it is anything but, judging from the title “Warming lull haunts authors of key climate report”. It could be the first time in human history that evidence that may avert a pending apocalypse is “haunting” but such are the stakes in the climate “debate”.
The word debate is in quotes because the AP doesn’t consider it as such. On one side are “scientists” and the other “skeptics”:
Scientists working on a landmark U.N. report on climate change are struggling to explain why global warming appears to have slowed down in the past 15 years even though greenhouse gas emissions keep rising.
Leaked documents obtained by The Associated Press show there are deep concerns among governments over how to address the issue ahead of next week's meeting of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Climate skeptics have used the lull in surface warming since 1998 to cast doubt on the scientific consensus that humans are cooking the planet by burning fossil fuels and cutting down CO2-absorbing forests.
Here’s a telling line: “skeptics” cast doubt not on the evidence (which is reasonable) but on the “scientific consensus”. Previously I wrote here critical of the use of “scientific consensus” as a stand in for evidence. It is fashionable to use “consensus”. It has the niceties of democracy, but it isn’t science nor is it evidence.
The UN is now about to issue a report on Climate Change and evidence to the contrary gives governments “deep concerns” that it may not be happening after all. Note how unscientific the process becomes:
The IPCC report is expected to affirm the human link with greater certainty than ever, but the panel is under pressure to also address the recent lower rate of warming, which scientists say is likely due to heat going deep into the ocean and natural climate fluctuations.
“Under pressure”? Would not the IPCC, presumably a collection of scientists, address it as a matter of scientific inquiry? And here we go again with the flippant use of the word “scientists” to give the impression of absolute certainty that the absence of heat is “going deep into the ocean”. I write here and here on this matter. In short “scientist” don’t conclude this to be the case at all.
More on the unscience nature of it all when Alden Meyer, of the Washington-based Union of Concerned Scientists (it’s an organization of scientists who take time out from science to be concerned ie: political):
I think to not address it would be a problem because then you basically have the denialists saying, 'Look the IPCC is silent on this issue
No Mr. Concerned Scientist, by not addressing evidence would be a dereliction of the scientists duty, no? It’s evidence! What is this a contest between scientists and skeptic/denialists (which is made up word, by the way. another tell). God forbid the “denialists” should be right. And this becomes the most pressing concern:
Germany called for the reference to the slowdown to be deleted, saying a time span of 10-15 years was misleading in the context of climate change, which is measured over decades and centuries.
You know what, don’t even mention it. Forget it. Pretend it doesn’t exist. You know how those denialists are.
From the US government:
The U.S. also urged the authors to include the "leading hypothesis" that the reduction in warming is linked to more heat being transferred to the deep ocean.
Belgium objected to using 1998 as a starting year for any statistics. That year was exceptionally warm, so any graph showing global temperatures starting with 1998 looks flat, because most years since have been cooler. Using 1999 or 2000 as a starting year would yield a more upward-pointing curve.
Gee, how can we game the data , any ideas? Belgium, what do you think?
Many skeptics claim that the rise in global average temperatures stopped in the late 1990s and their argument has gained momentum among some media and politicians, even though the scientific evidence of climate change is piling up: the previous decade was the warmest on record and, so far, this decade is even warmer. Meanwhile, Arctic sea ice melted to a record low last year and the IPCC draft said sea levels have risen by 7.5 inches (19 centimeters) since 1901.
It stopped getting warmer yet the evidence is “mounting” that it is getting warmer. The previous decade from the 90's was the warmest on record but scientist say decades are too short a time span to judge climate history. Even the scientist who believe in climate change are are at odds with scientist who believe in climate change.
Many researchers say the slowdown in warming is related to the natural ocean cycles of El Nino and La Nina. Also, a 2013 study by Kevin Trenberth at the National Center for Atmospheric Research found dramatic recent warming in the deeper oceans.
This is thrown into the article as “mounting” evidence. El Nino and La Nina can't be lumped together, it has to be one or the other, why? Because one means the pacific is going through a warm spell (Nino) while its counter-part, Nina, is a cooling period. So what state is the pacific ocean now? Nina, cooling. So what do we make of the “leading hypothesis” that the heat is being absorbed by the “deep ocean”?
Wait a minute, what did you say?
The IPCC draft report says it's "extremely likely" that human influence caused more than half of the warming observed since the 1950s, an upgrade from "very likely" in the last IPCC report in 2007.
Now we’re parsing around the word “likely”. I thought the consensus was out and it was all absolute and if you didn’t believe it you were a skeptical denial guy? Now we’re measuring the force of “likely”.
This whole thing is less about science and more about how to keep the skeptic/denialists at bay. It is more important that governments limit the use of carbon emissions and to that end game the evidence or omit it entirely. Does this sound like science to you?