The Earth Does Not Have a Fever, Requires No Cowbell.


It is generally accepted that when you try to gin up a panic over a coming crisis, that crisis usually has to actually arrive at some point. There is a name for those who try to rook you out of your money under false pretenses. Maybe we should research that name for a good number of our elected officials.

The world stopped getting warmer almost 16 years ago, according to new data released last week. 

The figures, which have triggered debate among climate scientists, reveal that from the beginning of 1997 until August 2012, there was no discernible rise in aggregate global temperatures.

This means that the ‘plateau’ or ‘pause’ in global warming has now lasted for about the same time as the previous period when temperatures rose, 1980 to 1996. Before that, temperatures had been stable or declining for about 40 years.

My own take on anthropogenic global warming is that we’re trying to suss out trends measured in years or even decades when the global climate, so far as we know, operates in cycles that last centuries or longer. Our climate models are based on barely a century of solid observations — observations we recently learned were wickedly flawed. While there is wisdom in continuing our studies and focusing on microclimates (the changes to climate that we know we cause in smaller areas, say, around cities), we’d be foolish to turn our entire economy to meet a threat that simply does not exist.