I recognize that belief in man-made climate change is often a matter of ideology. Many conservatives deny it and ridicule the very concept. One would be hard-pressed to find a liberal who does not believe it whole-heatedly. They believed it even in its infancy when it was a mere theory. The reason I believe there is such an ideological divide on the issue, is because both sides believe that if global warming is real, certain global and societal changes will be necessary to address it. Conservative abhor those changes that are advocated to address the problem and liberals welcome them. Issues of lifestyle, freedom, and sovereignty are seen as at stake in the issue of addressing global warming.
While there have been a few reputable scientists who are not persuaded, most peer reviewed scientific studies support global warming. The global warming alarmist who predicted we should have all been burned to a crisp by now or inundated by rising oceans have not helped their cause. Sort like the prophets who keep predicting the end of time, the alarmist after a while breed more skeptics.
Several years ago, I was persuaded by the evidence that global warming is most likely a scientific fact and that human activity was most likely a contributing factor. My position was shaken however by the “climategate” scandal when emails of climate scientist were hacked and it appeared that the effect of global warming was greatly exaggerated, that contradictory evidence was ignored (“hide the decline”), and those scientist who dared offer a skeptical opinion were conspired against to be marginalized and ridiculed.
A new study has come out that has again confirmed the science of global warming. This study represents the most comprehensive independent review of historical temperature records to date. This study gathered a team of 10 prominent scientists, mostly physicists, who studied anew the data from 40,000 weather stations. Richard Muller, a physicist at the University of California-Berkeley and a former self-described climate skeptic, led the study. He says he was surprised by his findings and is no longer a skeptic and now agrees with the scientific consensus.
After gathering climate data, the researchers graphed their findings and their graph is almost identical to the previous graphs of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa). This new study confirms that global warming is occurring. Not only did they find that it is occurring but it is occurring at a greater rate than the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change had estimated.
In addition to the study being led by a global warming skeptic, another thing that lends credibility to this new study is that the research is made available for anyone to review whereas secrecy had surrounded previous studies of global warming. This study is much more transparent. Another thing that adds credibility to this new study is that the funding came from a number of new sources, including $150,000 from a Koch brother’s foundation. The conservative Koch brothers have been critics of man-made global warming. A criticism of previous studies was that the research was tainted by the source of funding and that researchers had a vested interest in reaching conclusions that would support more research.
I know that a lot of people have their mind made up and are not going to be swayed no matter what the evidence shows, but if one can keep an open mind, I think one must conclude that man-made global warming is a reality.
How to address the problem of global warming is a whole different topic than whether or not there is man-made global warming. People who agree there is a problem may still disagree on how to address it. Admitting that man-made global warming is most likely a fact does not mean one has to reach the same conclusions as the socialist one-worlders or back-to-nature hippie spiritualist. It is time to argue about what to do about the problem instead of continuing to deny there is problem.
For more information on this new study see here, here, and here.