Grasping at straws

Since 2010 has wound up, you can see a lot of stories about how 2010 was the warmest on record or about how Greenland’s Melting Season Lasted 50 Days Longer than Average in 2010. This last is considered ‘important’ for several reasons. The latest concerns albedo.

One of the most important things the researchers observed from the study was that the relationship between temperature and melt was not linear — it can be exponential. As snow melts, it reveals older less reflective snow and eventually even less reflective bare ice, both of which absorb more heat and accelerate melting and ultimately extend the melt season.

PhysOrg describes one of the more established Greenland ice sheet concerns in New melt record for Greenland ice sheet (w/ Video).

New research shows that 2010 set new records for the melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet, expected to be a major contributor to projected sea level rises in coming decades.

It is the context and what is left out that indicate that such stories are an effort akin to grasping at straws. The context includes things like recent reports that show that the error in measuring temperature dwarfs any measured global warming over the last century, the sea level has not risen over the last century in a manner to support the drowning cities alarmism, that the ENSO seems to have more to do with the ‘2010 warmest’ than anything else, and that there has been a steady rise in atmospheric CO2 but temperatures have been fairly flat for the last decade or so.

The straw man presentation about “deniers” is a part of this. It is a straw man because there is no reputable reasoning stance that denies climate change or even a trend of warming for the last century or so in global temperatures. Global warming is not the issue creating dissonance. What is at issue is the alarmist prognostications about global disaster, such as cities drowning due to Greenland ice sheet melting, when there is nothing evident to support such claims. Another issue is mankind’s culpability – just how important is human activity in climate change? A third major issue involves determining just how much effort and money should be shifted away from poverty and disease amelioration towards activities that are supposed to mitigate any impact mankind might have on climate.

When perspective and context is missing, the conclusions should be suspect and motivations questioned.

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