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10 Arguments Climate Change Deniers Need to Stop Making

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Climate change, actually not all that complicated!While the United States is catching on to climate change, so much so that roughly 66% of Americans acknowledged global warming by 2013, according to the Pew Research Center.

That leaves 33% in the dark, however. While climate change deniers may be a minority in the overall population, one look at TV news shows that at least a couple have prominent positions in the media and therefore can exercise their freedom of speech just a little louder than the rest of us. Here are their ten worst arguments:

1. Cold Winters

This is the oldest, tiredest argument out there. It’s actually probably worse because of climate change, since it has weakened the jet stream, which used to keep colder winds from the US. Although, it is understandable how this argument would appeal to people who like to think of the world in simple terms.

2. There is More Arctic Sea Ice

This is a great example of getting a short-term trend mixed up with a long-term trend. For instance, in 2013, arctic sea ice did increase – but only in comparison to 2012. Overall, arctic sea ice has reduced drastically since 1974.

3. Polar Bears are Happy

The emotional image of polar bears struggling on increasingly small pieces of ice is a climate change classic, and yet their numbers do seem to be increasing. However, scientists believe this may be because there are now more scientists studying them, and that it’s possible more of them are simply seen now than before. It also could be the effect of a European seal hide ban, which increased the bears’ food source.

4. The Global Temperature Isn’t Rising

This argument is a favorite of famous climate change denier Rush Limbaugh, and it is just simply false. There is clear evidence that over the past seventeen years, the global temperature has risen by 0.09°F.

5. There’s Hardly Any Carbon Dioxide in the Atmosphere

The people that like this argument don’t understand chemistry. Since carbon dioxide is extremely efficient at trapping heat, even a small addition to the atmosphere is enough to raise global temperatures.

6. This is a Natural Cycle

The Earth does go through natural warming and cooling cycles, but the key here is relative speed. Since the Industrial Revolution, the atmosphere has heated more quickly than at any other point in history.

7. Scientists Predicted an Ice Age in the ’70s

Again, this is just wrong. Yes, some scientists did see a cooling pattern at the time, but they were in the minority. Climate modeling was only just becoming possible, though, and it had a long way to go before achieving what it is capable of now.

8. Climate Scientists Made up the Data

Climate change deniers had a field day when emails between climate researchers were leaked, with one using the phrase “data-massaging”. They claimed this meant the data was fake. However, an independent investigation found that the researchers had done nothing wrong, but should have explained what mathematical method they meant by “data-massaging”.

9. Climate Change is Not Responsible for Droughts

When Obama blamed climate change for the California drought, deniers pointed out there was no evidence for this. In the case of California, researchers do not believe it is directly related to global warming. However, that is one of the potential future symptoms of climate change.

10. Climate Change is Still “Just a Theory”

2011 Presidential candidate Rick Perry used this line of reasoning during his campaign, arguing that the nation shouldn’t jeopardize economic health for something that is not “settled science”. Scientific theories, however, have a lot of evidence behind them and are considered fact. In this case, 97.1% of academic papers supported climate change while only 1.9% could be used as evidence against it.

 

 

 

 

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Climate change really started when al goreleone pulled it out of his
    ass. His buddy maurice strong was also involved. Here’s a quote from
    maurice.

    “The common enemy of humanity is man. In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we
    came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages,
    famine and the like would fit the bill. The real enemy then is humanity itself.

    – From the Club of Rome’s “The First Global Revolution” p. 75 1993 ”

    The UN took it to the next level with AGENDA 21…………GOOGLE IT !

  2. In order:

    1. Cold winters don’t prove anything, as you correctly state. However, the northern polar jet stream has been breaking speed records over the last few years, in particular the UK winter 2013/14 where extra jet stream power was repeatedly cited for it being the wettest on record. Jet streams only exist because of three factors, Equatorial heat, the Coriolis Effect and Arctic cold. Traditionally, summer speeds can slow to 150 mph before rising to 250 mph in mid-winter, the difference being caused by summer and winter levels of Arctic cold. 2013/14 saw 300 mph over the Atlantic for the first time because it was supercharged by the only factor that fluctuates, stronger Arctic cold entering temperate zones.

    2. Past sea ice behaviour is unique amongst climate indicators in that it’s the only one which can be accurately measured, using @NSIDC’s MASIE (extent) and @PolarScience_UW’s PIOMAS (depth) to calculate Arctic Mass. Using the weakest point of annual summer melts as a good example of recent improvement, 17th September 2012 saw 3,895,000 cu km, 24th September 2013 saw 5,561,000 cu km (42.8% more) while 27th September 2014 was 7,030,000 cu km (80.5% more than 2012). Two years don’t make a trend, but neither do 37 (1979) in a climate billions of years old. If you want to post something that’ll be taken seriously on this matter, make it the MASIE and PIOMAS data from 1974-1978 as neither are currently available, measured not modelled of course. My numbers come from a completed spreadsheet based on MASIE and PIOMAS data available from my Twitter profile.

    3. Anyone who describes polar bears as happy, sad or any other emotion is making a non-scientific assumption based on their own assumptions. We don’t even know how many polar bears there are, so you’re right to call this point out.

    4. I’ve done no research on the science of temperature change, which unlike the high-school mathematics of sea ice is beyond me and most people, so I have no comment on this point beyond the obvious. Hotter temperatures cause sea ice to shrink over years and decades, only since the last monthly mass low in January 2013, annual Arctic Mass comparisons have increased for 25 of the 29 months to June 2015. If that changes in the years to come, you’ll find me tweeting so at @MASIEandPIOMAS where I’m currently posting about this summer’s increasingly severe melt.

    5. Water vapour, like the oceans beneath, is the primary means for trapping and transmitting solar energy across the biosphere. Particles on the other hand reflect sunlight to a greater or lesser extent, with the facets of carbon particles that are clearly visible in microscope images online belying this concept. To end the greenhouse effect, we’d need to drain every drop of water from the oceans which thankfully is one way at least humanity can’t kill itself.

    6. Understanding of the relative speed of natural changes in our climate is essential for anyone using it to explain current behaviour. However, there is as yet no understanding of the speed of past events which leads to your counterpart fallacy, which claims our ignorance demands that lessons of the past have no bearing at all in future modelling. The one example I have heard discussed is the beginning of the current inter-glacial ten thousand years ago, which at 300ft of sea rise flooding Doggerland is believed to have occurred between 15 and 250 years, a rise of 1 inch every 2 to 25 days. By comparison, even the most alarmist fears of 21st Century sea rise are easily manageable.

    7. True. The only climate consensus of the 1970’s was how little they understood what makes the biosphere tick, a basic necessity of any scientific endeavour that’s been lost since to the political pandering of anthropogenic hubris.

    8. If you’ve heard of him or her, that person either never was or is no longer a cutting-edge scientist, whatever he or she may claim. As for the real scientists who quietly toil away while doing their best to avoid the public spotlight, yes they do seek the truth and should be left to do so in peace, with their work accepted by all as having no undue influence from any opinions they may privately hold. We need more of these people, not less.

    9. Droughts are primarily caused by long-term exposure to dry air rather than heat. The example of this of course is Antarctica which has the driest air on the planet, masses of which desiccate forests and brush land across South Australia for months at a time. If such dryness is increasing across the planet, it suggests both polar and mountainous air masses (such as Atacama) are increasing in strength and reach, something that should be weaker and wetter if the climate really is becoming more equatorial in nature.

    10. Climate change never stops, just like the fallacy that sceptics of anthropogenic global warming believe otherwise. Re-branding something false with the name of something that’s true doesn’t make it so, making this last misrepresentation the most unscientific of them all.

    • 5) We don’t want to completely get rid of the greenhouse effect (that would be even worse than the issue with CO2). The water vapor reasoning should have been on his list as well. Water Vapor for the most part is constant in our atmosphere. We aren’t putting new water vapor into the atmosphere by the trillions of tons of it, like we are CO2.

      6) This is false. We have ice cores and tree rings that can show us quite accurately what the climate was like hundreds of thousands of years ago. They show nothing that changes in the 100 year period (like us since the Industrial Revolution).

      8) I am sorry, but that is an absolutely atrocious comment to make, and isn’t even remotely true.

      Otherwise, right on.

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