In the last couple of days, I have found myself in a debate with my older sister and brother (both of whom I love and respect tremendously) over the issue of climate change and man’s effect on CO2. As usual, I depend on facts rather than rhetoric. But, finding good reliable facts – without any muddling of interpretation – was difficult. I used sources from places like the United States Historical Climatology Network (http://cdiac.ornl.gov/epubs/ndp/ushcn/ushcn.html) ,the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (http://www.giss.nasa.gov/) , and the United States Geological Survey (http://www.usgs.gov/). Most have good stats – once you sort through them.
Thankfully, I also ran across another website – Icecap (http://icecap.us/index.php). Their “About Us” column sums up why I like them:
ICECAP is not funded by large corporations that might benefit from the status quo but by private investors who believe in the need for free exchange of ideas on this and other important issues of the day. Our working group is comprised of members from all ends of the political spectrum. This is not about politics but about science. (http://icecap.us/index.php/go/about-us)
Finally, a group of scientists who are committed to getting some truth out about climate change. Again, from their “About Us” page:
We worry the sole focus on greenhouse gases and the unwise reliance on imperfect climate models while ignoring real data may leave civilization unprepared for a sudden climate shift that history tells us will occur again, very possibly soon. (http://icecap.us/index.php/go/about-us)
In other words, they are concerned that all the fluff and drool that is coming out of science today is muddying the waters – preventing true science inquiry into a potentially major global climate change that history says will occur.
For example, a statement on their home page about global warming:
The global-average lower tropospheric temperature anomaly fell back to the October level of +0.28 deg. C in December. The tropics continue warm from El Nino conditions there, while the NH and SH extratropics anomalies cooled from last month. While the large amount of year-to-year variability in global temperatures seen in the above plot makes it difficult to provide meaningful statements about long-term temperature trends in the context of global warming, the running 25-month average suggests there has been no net warming in the last 11 years or so.
Huh? No net warming in the last 11 years? What will we ever do now?
One of their members has also published a very good article about the reliability of US temperature measurement centers. (Is the U. S. Surface Temperature Record Reliable?) Seems that we cannot even trust the thermometer readings of these stations because they are set next to asphalt, in the middle of industrial centers, or next to air and heat units. In other words – we have no real idea if temperature is increasing or decreasing – because we have no reliable record. Important to know – and sad to learn.
ICECAP is funded entirely by investors seeking the truth – not a political agenda. I would encourage you to donate to them.