Talk:Global warming/Archive 46

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Global Warming is a theory

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

This is addressed in the FAQ --TS 17:07, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

It should state in the article that Global Warming is theory and not a solid fact as the article seems to suggest. Kluft (talk) 19:26, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Global warming is a theory in the scientific sense, in that it is well supported and has survived numerous attempts at falsification. It is also a fact, in that thermometers don't lie. It would be doing our readers a major disservice to suggest otherwise. So thank you for your suggestion, but consider it rejected. Raul654 (talk) 19:29, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
Global warming is a theory that made its first scientifically testable prediction in 2001 in the IPCC report. That report predicted that temperatures would rise by 1.4-5.8C. This was the first scientifically prediction that was capable of being tested, and as the scientific method requires, whether it was "falsifiable" depends on how well its predictions compare with real data. (not against computer models). The question any decent scientist should ask themself, is "how good does this prediction of between 1.4-5.8C warming in 110 years appear to be". The answer is that far from warming, worldwide temperatures have fallen with a trend that suggests -1.4C of cooling. Whilst 7 years of cooling trend is too short to say conclusively the theory has been proven to be false, I think saying "it is well supported" is a slight overstatement to say the least, given the fact the prediction has singularly failed to predict even the sign of the temperature trend let alone its absolute size. (talk) 10:56, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
Sorry, you have a logic failure. If the question is, how good does this prediction of between 1.4-5.8C warming in 110 years appear to be then the answer is "please wait for 103 years" William M. Connolley (talk) 12:01, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
Excellent consensus building. Kluft - the warming is a fact; the cause is what the theories address. Unfortunately many users are unable to understand this distinction. Jaimaster (talk) 23:18, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
This is a misdirection. This is far from being either the coldest or warmest time in the history of the Earth. Man's industrial contribution to the atmosphere is irrelevant. Consensus is not fact, and as a matter of fact, there is not an overwhelming majority of scientists that subscribe to the theory. I've found the linked PDF to be an excellent resource to back up my discussions and I'd like to include its charts in the article in some way: Ryratt (talk) 19:57, 31 December 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps "thermometers don't lie", but an awful lot of them appear to be located in questionable places. On occasion, it appears that some data has simply been copied from one year to the next. And there are probably lots of other errors. Granted, the known errors are not enough to question the current cooling trend (over the last 7 years), or the longer warming trend (since 1980), but there are still a lot of monitoring sites that the skeptics haven't been able to survey. In addition, over 70% of the Earth is monitored by satellites and that data is highly questionable (according to NASA). Q Science (talk) 10:01, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

Can I rephrase the original statement.

Man made Global warming is accepted and can account for approximately +0.6 deg C. Catastrophic warming forecasts created by positive feedback is a theory.

And from this article which I take from the main page it makes the theory bunk. We can not have catastrophic warming with a run away effect at the same time we have cooling of the oceans.

OxAO (talk) 22:43, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

What is your definition of "catastrophy"? See the FAQ. The current effects of global warming are already quite catastrophic, but very diffuse. "We're all going to die" is not something that is seriously suggested by the IPCC or any scientific organization I'm aware of. And the article you cite does not say that "the oceans are cooling", but that the sea surface temperatures in some areas may temporarily decrease very slightly. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:59, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
“This page is about the science of global warming. It doesn't talk about planetary doom or catastrophe.”
“Climate model projections indicate that global surface temperature will likely rise a further 1.1 to 6.4 °C (2.0 to 11.5 °F) during the twenty-first century.”

These two statements are contradictory.

If the planet rises in temperature 1.1 deg C per hundred years then eventually the human race and ever living thing on the planet will die. The Earth will be a sister planet to Venus. Catastrophic Positive feedback theory is a run away effect it has no end to how high the temperatures will go.

From the article: “Our results suggest that global surface temperature may not increase over the next decade”

This is again contradictory to the run away effect created by the positive feedback theory. A good example of positive feedback is turning a bowl upside down then put a ball on top of the bowl. Then you push the ball off the slope and the ball will pick up energy as it falls.

If we have cooling in the middle of the positive feed back that would mean the ball is no longer falling down the slope.

02:42, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

If this is a catastrophe id love to live in your utopia. Jaimaster (talk) 23:35, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
Just because it does not currently directly affect you or me does not mean it is not happening. That's why I asked about the definition of "catastrophe". Was the 1996 Everest Disaster a catastrophe? The Galtür Avalanche? The Collapse of the World Trade Center? Global warming has easily killed more people than either of these so far. What is more, we are currently living through a major extinction event that is at least partially caused and accelerated by global warming. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 00:00, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
Global warming has easily killed more than 2,753 people? Show me the body bags. To borrow a certain journalist's response to this sort of claim, "name just 10". Ill settle for a source for 10 deaths where the cause of death is undisputably "global warming". Jaimaster (talk) 00:49, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

Regarding the idea that "if warming happens then eventually every living thing on Earth will die", assuming it isn't clobbered with a doomsday asteroid at some point, eventually all life on Earth WILL be wiped out as our Sun changes. Long before it even incinerates the planet as it reaches red giantism, it will eliminate the oceans and make the planet incompatible with life. The planet is doomed whether we drive hybrid cars or not. Whether humans will have survived long enough to develop the technology to find another place to live and survive by that point is another question.TheDarkOneLives (talk) 06:37, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

Amphibians are the primary targets of the latest extension. Global Warming Link To Amphibian Declines is in Doubt

03:31, 16 December 2008 (UTC)~ —Preceding unsigned comment added by OxAO (talkcontribs)

As you well know, few things are undisputable. Weather events are only probabilistically correlated with global warming. The 2003 European heat wave is generally considered to be at least partially caused by global warming, and has caused at last several thousand deaths. So has the 2006 European heat wave. And that is for major industrialized countries with an excellent infrastructure and easy access to good health services. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 01:12, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
There were never any heat waves before global warming? I find this argument hard to take seriously. If the Earth was cooler, the weather would certainly be different. But there will always be freak weather and people dying from it. CO2 is plant food, not a satanic gas. The idea that the natural temperature is perfect one is a form of natural worship. According to the graph of satellite date, the temperature is same now as it was in 1980.[1] Kauffner (talk) 02:04, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
Yes, there will always be freak weather. But one of the predictions of the IPCC is an increase in the frequency and severity of freak weather events. CO2 is both a toxic poison and a necessary component for life - as is Oxygen, by the way (if you ever dive on Nitrox, don't exceed an Oxygen partial pressure of 1.6 atm). It all depends on the concentration. CO2 is well below the direct toxicity level for humans (though not necessarily for certain corals), but it probably is much higher than it ever was in the Holocene, and it is rising faster than at any other time we can make reliable claims about. As for the "optimal temperature" red herring, see the FAQ. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 08:15, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
”But one of the predictions of the IPCC is an increase in the frequency and severity of freak weather events.”
Lets think about that for a second. For example: How are Hurricanes in the gulf of Mexico created? Real generally when there is a large difference in temperatures between the weather at the equator and the weather farther north. Right?
No offense, but -- wrong. Baroclinity (i.e., horizontal temperature contrast) produces vertical wind shear, which is well known to inhibit hurricane development. See e.g., here. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 05:38, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
If there is warmer weather in the north that would mean a more balanced temperature with the weather at the equator, in other words at it gets warmer there would be less sever storms.
There is no logic to their argument.
OxAO (talk) 05:13, 17 December 2008 (UTC).
Why do they claim as it gets warmer that there would be greater severity of the storms?
Mostly because of greater low-level humidity, promoting moist convective instability. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 05:38, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
There's a lot of logic to it -- providing you understand the physics. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 05:38, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
Id have said enhanced by rather than caused by myself. There is little doubt the extra temp made those heat waves kill more than they might have in say, 1950. How many? And how do they balance against a similarly extrapolated guesswork number of lives saved by warmer winters since 1980? :) In any case I still disagree on catastrophe. A positive feedback cycle kicking off would be a catastrophe, but we havnt seen that yet... as far as I am aware the numbers on extinctions are similar extrapolated guesses to the "death count" of AGW / salt / passive smoking / ozone depletion / DDT bans. No bodies, just guesses. Jaimaster (talk) 04:01, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

This article explains the difference between theory and fact quite well. Garycompugeek (talk) 23:54, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

If you smoke and you get lung cancer, then you still cannot prove that the smoking caused the lung cancer in your case. So, despite the fact that it is now undisputed that a large fraction of all lung cancer cases are caused by smoking, no one can point to any particular case of a lung cancer that was caused by smoking. Count Iblis (talk) 14:36, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

Exactly. What you can do, however, is look at the rate of cancer in non-smokers and smokers of similar demographic backgrounds and create an estimate. Any attempt to apply this to the rate of death by natural disaster since 1980 compared to before is going to be rendered completely meaningless by more modern disaster response greatly lowering the casualty numbers per similar disaster. Since AGW is caused by industrialisation, and modern disaster response is a result of industrialisation, AGW saves lives! (poor link, but amusing). Jaimaster (talk) 22:32, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

A lucid summary by David Evans of the case against man-made global warming - and why the theory still has its fierce propagandists:

From 1975 to 2001 the global temperature trended up. How do you empirically determine the cause of this global warming? ...

The signature of an increased greenhouse effect consists of two features: a hotspot about 10 km up in the atmosphere over the tropics, and a combination of broad stratospheric cooling and broad tropospheric warming…

We have been observing temperatures in the atmosphere for decades using radiosondes - weather balloons with thermometers… The radiosonde measurements for 1979-1999 show broad stratospheric cooling and broad tropospheric warming, but they show no tropical hotspot. Not even a small one. ..

Human carbon emissions were occurring at the time but the greenhouse effect did not increase. Therefore human carbon emissions did not increase the greenhouse effect, and did not cause global warming…

The only supporting evidence for AGW was the old ice core data. The old ice core data, gathered from 1985, showed that in the past half million years, through several global warmings and coolings, the earth’s temperature and atmospheric carbon levels rose and fell in lockstep. AGW was coming into vogue in the 1980s, so it was widely assumed that it was the carbon changes causing the temperature changes....

(But) by 2003 it had been established to everyone’s satisfaction that temperature changes preceded corresponding carbon changes by an average of 800 years: so temperature changes caused carbon changes… So the ice core data no longer supported AGW.

So if there is no evidence to support AGW, and the missing hotspot shows that AGW is wrong, why does most of the world still believe in AGW?

Part of the answer is that science changed direction after a large constituency of vested interests had invested in AGW… (S)cientists were being paid by governments to research the effects of human-caused global warming… AGW grabbed control of climate funding in key western countries… The alarmists are full time, well funded, and hog the megaphone.
DDB (talk) 23:52, 19 December 2008 (UTC)

< What is very clear to this reader is that messengers Kim D. Petersen, William M. Connolley, and Stephan Schulz have no tolerance for rational discussion on this subject. Unfortunately the gates they hope to hold shut are soon to overflow. The real data is showing cooling temperatures, cooling oceans, correlation with solar activity, not CO² and a larger collection of scientific minds questioning IPCC perspective. The climate is surely changing is this regard. > < > Do your own research: —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:19, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

I wont be suprised to see that comment deleted, but I must say (and me as a dirty sceptic to them, at that) until such a time as peer reviewed scientific literature says what the blogs say, this article will - quite rightly mind you - reflect the existing literature. Like you I am quite confident that the day will come that the existing versions of this article can be pulled out of the wiki logs for some /point /laugh, but that day is still years into the future.
If you really want to help, instead of posting talk page rhetoric, find AGW related articles and try and prune back the rubbish-based alarmist hysteria that occasionally creeps in. For example, if a certain hysteric's recent "research" about how merely burning coal will "very likely" turn Earth into Venus to creeps in, be around to make sure it gets put back into the trashcan it belongs in, per wp:undue. Jaimaster (talk) 03:56, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

Will Kim Peterson take this off as well ? Scientists Call AP Report on Global Warming 'Hysteria' Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Scientists skeptical of the assertion that climate change is the result of man's activates are criticizing a recent Associated Press report on global warming, calling it "irrational hysteria," "horrifically bad" and "incredibly biased." They say the report, which was published on Monday, contained sweeping scientific errors and was a one-sided portrayal of a complicated issue. "If the issues weren't so serious and the ramifications so profound, I would have to laugh at it," said David Deming, a geology professor at the University of Oklahoma who has been critical of media reporting on the climate change issue. In the article, Obama Left with Little Time to Curb Global Warming, AP Science Writer Seth Borenstein wrote that global warming is "a ticking time bomb that President-elect Barack Obama can't avoid," and that "global warming is accelerating." Deming, in an interview, took issue with Borenstein's characterization of a problem he says doesn't exist. "He says global warming is accelerating. Not only is it continuing, it's accelerating, and whether it's continuing that was completely beyond the evidence," Deming told "The mean global temperature, at least as measured by satellite, is now the same as it was in the year 1980. In the last couple of years sea level has stopped rising. Hurricane and cyclone activity in the northern hemisphere is at a 24-year low and sea ice globally is also the same as it was in 1980." Deming said the article is further evidence of the media's decision to talk about global warming as fact, despite what he says is a lack of evidence. "Reporters, as I understand reporters, are supposed to report facts,"Deming said. "What he's doing here is he's writing a polemic and reporting it as fact, and that's not right. It's not reporting. It's propaganda. "This reads like a press release for an environmental advocacy group like Greenpeace. It's not fair and balanced." A spokesman for the Associated Press said that the news agency stands by its story. "It’s a news story, based on fact and the clearly expressed views of President-elect Barack Obama and others," spokesman Paul Colford told in an e-mail. Michael R. Fox, a retired nuclear scientist and chemistry professor from the University of Idaho, is another academic who found serious flaws with the AP story's approach to the issue. "There's very little that's right about it," Fox said. "And it's really harmful to the United States because people like this Borenstein working for AP have an enormous impact on everyone, because AP sells their news service to a thousand news outlets. "One guy like him can be very destructive and alarming. Yeah it's freedom of speech, but its dishonest." Like Deming, Fox said global warming is not accelerating. "These kinds of temperatures cycle up and down and have been doing so for millions of years," he said. He said there is little evidence to believe that man-made carbon dioxide is causing temperature fluctuation. "It's silly to lay it all on man-made carbon dioxide," Fox said. "It was El Nino in 1998 that caused the big spike in global warming and little to do with carbon dioxide." Other factors, including sun spots, solar winds, variations in the solar magnetic field and solar irradiation, could all be affecting temperature changes, he said. James O'Brien, an emeritus professor at Florida State University who studies climate variability and the oceans, said that global climate change is very important for the country and that Americans need to make sure they have the right answers for policy decisions. But he said he worries that scientists and policymakers are rushing to make changes based on bad science. "Global climate change is occurring in many places in the world," O'Brien said. "But everything that's attributed to global warming, almost none of it is global warming." He took issue with the AP article's assertion that melting Arctic ice will cause global sea levels to rise. "When the Arctic Ocean ice melts, it never raises sea level because floating ice is floating ice, because it's displacing water," O'Brien said. "When the ice melts, sea level actually goes down. "I call it a fourth grade science experiment. Take a glass, put some ice in it. Put water in it. Mark level where water is. Let it met. After the ice melts, the sea level didn't go up in your glass of water. It's called the Archimedes Principle." He called sea level changes a "major scare tactic used by the global warming people." O'Brien said he doesn't discount the potential effects man is having on the environment, but he cautioned that government should not make hasty decisions. "There is no question that the Obama administration is green and I'm green, and there's no question that they're going to really take a careful look at what we need to do and attack problems, and I applaud that," O'Brien said. "But I'm really concerned that they're going to spend all the money on implementation of mitigation, rather than supporting the science." —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:36, 28 December 2008 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Notable sceptic? Who is Dr Will Happer?

Who is Dr Will Happer? All over the web he's said to be a "noted energy expert and Princeton physicist" and to have published 200 papers. The claims then run: "In 1993, he testified before Congress that the scientific data didn't support widespread fears about the dangers of the ozone hole and global warming, remarks that caused then-Vice President Al Gore to fire him". But only in in October this year coming out and saying: "I have spent a long research career studying physics that is closely related to the greenhouse effect ... Fears about man-made global warming are unwarranted and are not based on good science." MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 00:11, 26 December 2008 (UTC)

He's an atomic physicist at Princeton. Despite his claims to the contrary, I can find no publications by him that are directly related to the physics of climate change. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 01:05, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
I'm pretty much satisfied with the standard model of Global Warming. So when I saw that someone called Dr. Will Happer had come out against it (admittedly, only published in the Daily Star), my first stop was this article. After all, there are a lot of people making money from doom and gloom on this subject, whereas Will Happer would appear to be an educated and neutral observer. He has nothing (obvious) to gain or lose from sharing with us his scientific view. Do I find any mention of Will Happer? No, but in the discussion page, I find there are 1,000s of others like him. It's difficult to have much confidence in an article that's written from only one point of view. (and it turns out that this is one of Wikipedia's top articles!!!!!!) MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 13:14, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
This article accurately reflects the information published in peer reviewed journals. Our core policies, including verifiability require that we must use reliable sources to support all of the information in the article. Wikipedia does contain information about the Oregon Petition mentioned elsewhere on this talk page right now, about the Scientific opinion on climate change, about individuals who have problems with parts of the IPCC consensus List of scientists opposing the mainstream scientific assessment of global warming, and about the Global warming controversy. All of these pages (except Oregon Petition, which is linked from the controversy article) are linked from this article, both in the text and in the box at the bottom. It's not that the article is trying to hide anything. It's just that we can't fit all of the content on all of the global warming related articles on one page, and that the huge amount of political controversy creates a huge number of posts on this talk page from people who are individually global warming skeptics. The fact that "facts" that do not appear in the peer reviewed literature show up here on the talk page, and not on the article, is a strength, not a weakness, of Wikipedia. - Enuja (talk) 16:21, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
Thankyou for the explanation. What you're describing looks like quite a serious weakness, with "paid lobbyists" for alarmism getting a free ride for their position, even if (when?) their work is not very convincing to other members of the scientific community. Not your fault. At least there could be a section "Opposition", guiding people to find the other articles that (rather badly) cover controversy. MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 17:48, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
Please take a look at the article, check the references - and then please point out the ""paid lobbyists" for alarmism" that are getting a "free ride".... If there are really such people there - then they most certainly have to be pruned. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 20:04, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
Just follow any of the references in this article. All of the "scientists" involved are, in effect if not in profession, "paid lobbyists for alarmism." James Hansen would be a prime example. He lobbies congress all the time. --GoRight (talk) 18:07, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
I find the background to this article quite unsettling. Placid conviction displaced by uncomfortable sceptism in pretty short order. MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 23:52, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Graphs and charts at the head of the article

The temperature graphs at the head of the article are now out of date by half a decade, and a decade, respectively. This makes them misleading, as particularly with the global colder weather we've been having in the past two years, and advances in scientific techniques, they are no longer accurate representations of the issue. Shouldn't they be replaced with something more up-to-date and appropriate? (talk) 13:25, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

The top graph goes to 2007. Since 2008 isn't over yet - i would say that its pretty up-to-date. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 13:53, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
The real misleading point is using the LIA as the start point of a graph illustrating anthropogenic global warming. Jaimaster (talk) 23:29, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
Its the point where the instrumental record begins, whats misleading in that? (and who is doing the misleading?) --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 00:28, 30 December 2008 (UTC)
We lead with Global warming is the increase in the average temperature of the Earth's near-surface air and oceans since the mid-20th century and its projected continuation. yet to its right you can find a graph that shows a near 45* incline - from 1910. It looks quite impressive, but it is misleading, be it on purpose or by accident.
The second graphic also has an oddity. 1940-1980 is used as the reference period when it is neither the default at the site it was generated at, nor the usual ~1961-1990 more commonly used. Why was 40-80 chosen?
anthropogenic global warming redirects to this page, which is also interesting, given that we otherwise differenciate between "global warming" and its causes as facts and theory. Jaimaster (talk) 00:54, 30 December 2008 (UTC)
Bottom one, then, till 2004, five years out of date tomorrow. Think it's about time we got some new data, considering this is supposed to be a current issue. (talk) 16:40, 30 December 2008 (UTC)

I agree that it would be good to update all charts and graphs until the end of 2008. Grundle2600 (talk) 14:34, 1 January 2009 (UTC)

this article reflects extreme bias and ignores critical data from 2006 to present. i.e. pier reviewed papers that discuss and document current glacial expansion, oceanic ice expansion, non rising of coastlines worldwide, past temperature variation (warmer periods than present), co2 non-correlation with temperature rise, the list goes on and on. in a nutshell, this article in no way resembles a rational unbiased appraisal of the topic, rather reflects the unfortunate manipulative and fadish nature of the human beast.

Age of the Earth

How is the age of the earth irrelevant when talking about the history of the temp of the earth? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Alex25 (talkcontribs)

This article isn't about the "history of the temp of the earth". Its about the recent climate change. The geological age of the Earth is irrelevant here. Climate over the period of time that you are referring to is quite beyond the scope of both the discussion on climate change, and the recent climate. For one because during much of this timeperiod, the Earth didn't even have an atmosphere that would be breathable to life as we know it. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 11:43, 27 December 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, but what you're talking about is kind of like not seeing the forest for the trees. It's easy to look at a graph of temperatures over the past 200 years and note that it's getting hotter over that period of time, but when you step back and look at how temperature has fluctuated over the past thousands or millions of years, you'll find that the warming that's taking place is not uncommon at all. (talk) 19:41, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Sure, temperatures fluctuated wildly over geologic history. But that's not part of this article, you can check out the ones on geologic time and the past climates. This is about human-related time-scales. And warming on this short of a time-scale is very uncommon in the geologic past. The only really rapid warming like this that we have good constraints on is the Paleocene-Eocene thermal maximum, and that was still slow compared to what is happening today. Awickert (talk) 19:46, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
How do we know that? Especially considering the fact that we've only been keeping an accurate reliable record of global temperature for the past couple centuries? I mean, the debate is over the cause of the warming, and whether it is anthropogenic. I think if we can show that, in the face of history, this warming is not really an anomaly, that speaks volumes about the possibility that anything mankind doing is having any kind of impact that would warrant taking any kind of drastic measures that could harshly effect a global economy.HillChris1234 (talk) 20:23, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
From stable isotope records in cores for paleotemperatures, coupled with radiometric dating. The temperature isn't an anomaly - the rate is. And if you're generally worried about not just paleoclimate, but on cause and effect, there's a wealth of literature on CO2-climate correlations and feedbacks that boils down to the fact that doubling CO2 increases temperature by about 3 degrees C. Awickert (talk) 20:33, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

"global warming isn't real"

whenever I mention global warming to someone in conversation, they say it's not real and that 95% of greenhouse gas is water vapor. they also are all conservatives, I'm not sure how that ties in. this has nothing to do with the article, but can anyone give me a good comeback? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:53, 28 December 2008 (UTC)

This isn't the place to look for comebacks in a political argument, sorry. Whether you agree with GW or not, this is a forum for how to improve the article, not to look for a good zinger that'll give you an advantage in a debate.HillChris1234 (talk) 20:25, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
The facts behind this misunderstanding are described on this article page and on greenhouse gas and greenhouse effect. One comeback might be "Any normal risks from my driving aren't caused by the alcohol content in my blood, but increasing the alchohol content in my blood will result in problems with my driving." It's a silly and poor analogy, but it might work. For future reference, please use talk pages on articles for improving the article, not for talking about the subject. If you can't get the information you need from Wikipedia articles, try making a post on the reference desk. - Enuja (talk) 21:36, 28 December 2008


Except for the fact that nobody is debating that drunk driving is more dangerous than sober driving. You're right, it's a ridiculous argument, and you shouldn't be encouraging what this user is looking for. This is not the place for it.HillChris1234 (talk) 20:27, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
It's not real. sorry. and i'm not a conservative. You need to look at a graph that charts out the average temperatures on the planet from millions of years ago to now. If you do you will see that we are on a natural upward fluxuation in heat, and it will eventually peak and fall back down again. Were there greenhouse gasses during the last great ice age? no. Did you know that the last great ice age came to an extremely rapid end? That's just one of many examples where temperature has greatly fluxuated when any significant human activity is absent. Well, i should have said, humans are not any significant cause of it. But seriously, don't assume everything you hear and see is true. I used to believe that. But when i researched it myself, I saw that it was all crap. Did you know temperatures in the 14th century were almost 3 times as high as they are now? I don't know if you've noticed, but al gore's graphs never extended past a few hundred years. You can't validly compare average temperature now to average temperature a few years ago. You're taking an incredibly small percentage of the earth's lifespan. a few hundred years is nothing relative to the earth's age. You can't compare things that close together when there is so much more to compare to.
Nonsense. Temperatures 3 times as high as now? On what scale? Taking the best case, I suspect we would have some evidence of about 45℃ average global temperature - namely all those dead people around 1350 CE or so. Not to mention 177℉ or 864K. Of course there were greenhouse gases in the atmosphere during the last ice age. And "extremely rapid" means "several thousand years" - although, of course, if you talk about "great ice ages", we still are in one, and have been for 2.5 million years... --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:33, 14 January 2009 (UTC)
I think it quibbling to overstate the assertion of "Three times as high" and ignore the rest, because the assertion has some validity. Vikings farmed Iceland and those farms failed for a reason .. and I am aware of the rareness of vikings by the 14th century. Al Gore is not a scientist and his movie did not present science, no matter how lauded. There is something hucksterish about those who refuse to acknowledge there is debate. DDB (talk) 12:29, 15 January 2009 (UTC)
Try Collapse by Jared Diamod for a good detailed discussion of why the Viking colonies of Iceland and Greenland progressed the way they did. Climate change was a factor, but a small one amongst many. -- Leland McInnes (talk) 13:13, 15 January 2009 (UTC)
Norse on Iceland were still prospering until about 5 month ago. As for Greenland, see Talk:Global_warming/FAQ#It_was_obviously_much_warmer_when_the_Norse_settled_Greenland. Apart from the environmental aspects discussed in Collapse, the later medieval time saw a strong political and economic shift to the south, with Viking-descendant regimes in England, important parts of France, southern Italy, and with Normans even among the leaders of the crusades, leaving the Greenland colonies out high and dry. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:58, 15 January 2009 (UTC)

Correct them and say, Catastrophic warming forecasts are not real, but global warming is real.--OxAO (talk) 22:14, 28 December 2008 (UTC)

The best thing you can say is nothing at all. If someone stands for a certain point of view because their choice of political affiliation stands for the same, that person will rarely be swayed by such insignificant things as facts. This applies to both leftards and neocons equally... Jaimaster (talk) 05:11, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
He didn't say the opponent of the argument was against GW because he was conservative, he just mentioned it as if the only people who disagree with GW are just anti-Earth conservatives. That's a popular mindset among GW advocates. There is dissent on GW, but believers caste those dissenters down as "deniers" and "conservatives" whether they have legitimate scientific evidence or not. That's why believers don't think there's any debate.HillChris1234 (talk) 20:33, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
The decent thing would be to admit that the other person has a point, and then to research the actual facts instead of quoting some wikipedia comeback.Plaasjapie (talk) 12:15, 9 January 2009 (UTC)
We're not in the business of advocacy here (either way). Referring someone to an encyclopedia probably may help because then they can research for themselves and see if the objection on water vapor stands up. If you're interested in advocacy the place to would be an advocacy website which would have canned (and one hopes, verifiable) responses. All that matters to us is that we reflect all significant reasoned scientific opinions on the matter. --TS 13:27, 9 January 2009 (UTC)
An Encyclopedia... not Wikipedia.HillChris1234 (talk) 20:33, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

To answer the original question, a large amount of greenhouse gas IS water vapor. But if there is more CO2, then the hydrologic cycle changes: in a very simplified sense, higher temperatures because of more CO2 result in higher overall energy in the atmosphere, which results in water moving to a higher-energy (vapor) state. So more CO2 increases the amount of water vapor, which is an important feedback in a small amount of CO2 causing more greenhouse effect. I'm not sure about the 95% of it being water vapor - you should look that up - but water vapor IS the most important greenhouse gas. Awickert (talk) 19:52, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

More recognition of dismissive reports and data

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

This question is addressed in the FAQ. --TS 00:12, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

I understand Wiki pages are encylopedic and there is an effort to explain the topic. However, with this topic, the fact that there is a daily increase in dismissive reports by scientists, not political committees, must be highlighted. For example, the U.S. Sentate's recent report with a rambling title that includes Scientists Continue to Debunk “Consensus” in 2008

I hope I entered the data correctly.

In any event, the current article can go off on its merry way, but I would suggest that, very much like other Wiki articles, there be a strong statement that this is not a "consensus" law, even though proponents say it is. It is silly to match credentials and votes when discussing nature, but if we do that, then the global warming people are unarmed in a battle of wits. As it is, the poor students reading this page will not comprehend they are being programmed to accept a increasingly peculiar theory as a basis for governmental and economic decisions. The page moves from definition to propaganda.

In my research I noted that the Mann hockey stick graph is mathematically wrong, Hansen of NASA makes statements contradicted by his own department, that "Global Warming" equations never included solar activity (Much to the surprise of Columbia University,) that there had been an incredible increase in undersea volcanic activity, that the world is cooling (if not entering some sort of ice age,) sea levels are not rising out of control, and that there was global warming on Mars during the last solar activity, that the antarctic has been incredibly cold and ice is growing, contrary to talking heads on the news. Indeed, this year will be very cold, in general, as the flare activity was VERY low this year.

I understand you don't want arguments while defining a waning theory, but it is intellectually dishonest not to link to the powerful arguments dismissing the whole global warming construct. At least, the Europeans had the sense to change their complaints to the evils of "climate change" since the warming argument was becoming more absurd with each passing day.

To demonstrate, I looked up "creationism." Here is what Wiki reports: Creationism is the religious belief that humanity, life, the Earth, and the universe were created in their original form by a deity (often the Abrahamic God of Judaism, Christianity and Islam) or deities.[1] In relation to the creation-evolution controversy the term creationism is commonly used to refer to religiously-motivated rejection of evolution as an explanation of origins.[2] Clearly, a position was taken to effectively counter the theory.

Now, look at Global Warming, in addition to being misleading, the growing rejection of the theory, even by those falsely claimed to support it, is rendered irrelevant. First there is a clear definition, a statement of fact (that avoid the last 8 years of data and sets up a myriad of unsupported, non-scientific assumptions,) then there is the invocation of the silly IPCC, a mild recognition of variables (a minor variable is the sun ???), and the approval of unnamed societies. Then, there is a mention of "individual" scientists who are not part of the overwhelming majority, which the foot notes says is the opinion of a Royal Society. I suppose the logic is a group of people who sit around in a society, who are unnamed, and who profit from their own decisions are, somehow, more on top of things than leading scientists who put their reputationson the line. This approach to slanting the issue is not in error; it is intended. Some of these individuals are actually named in the report noted above and listed with their relevant and profound credentials.

To wit:

"Global warming is the increase in the average temperature of the Earth's near-surface air and oceans since the mid-20th century and its projected continuation. Global surface temperature increased 0.74 ± 0.18 °C (1.33 ± 0.32 °F) during the 100 years ending in 2005.[1][2] The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that most of the temperature increase since the mid-twentieth century is "very likely" due to the increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations.[3][2] Natural phenomena such as solar variation and volcanoes probably had a small warming effect from pre-industrial times to 1950 and a small cooling effect from 1950 onward.[4][5] These basic conclusions have been endorsed by at least 30 scientific societies and academies of science,[6] including all of the national academies of science of the major industrialized countries.[7][8][9] While individual scientists have voiced disagreement with these findings,[10] the overwhelming majority of scientists working on climate change agree with the IPCC's main conclusions.[11][12]

Finally, see the Royal Society's pages Dr. Carl Wunsch's (MIT) article that end with:

"Many scientists therefore rely upon numerical models of the climate system to calculate (1) the nature of natural variability with no human interference, and compare it to (2) the variability seen when human effects are included. This approach is a very sensible one, but the ability to test (calibrate) the models, which can be extraordinarily complex, for realism in both categories (1) and (2) is limited by the same observational data base already describe. At bottom, it is very difficult to determine the realism by which the models deal with either (1) or (2)

Thus at bottom, it is very difficult to separate human induced change from natural change, certainly not with the confidence we all seek. In these circumstances, it is essential to remember that the inability to prove human-induced change is not the same thing as a demonstration of its absence. It is probably true that most scientists would assign a very high probability that human-induced change is already strongly present in the climate system, while at the same time agreeing that clear-cut proof is not now available and may not be available for a long-time to come, if ever. Public policy has to be made on the basis of probabilities, not firm proof."

Another individual heard from. Funny how committees like to make pronouncements and never tell you who decided upon the decisions. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:06, 30 December 2008 (UTC)

Senate reports have no value at all as a scientific source, find some proper sources and you will have a case. The rest of your points (Last 8 years show cooling, Mann's work been wrong, it's the sun, etc.) are no more than the same rebuted arguments that shouldn't be discussed here as this is not a forum for general discussion about global warming. All I'll say is that if you disagree with Mann's work you have many more reconstruction of past temperatures... --Seba5618 (talk) 21:21, 30 December 2008 (UTC)
It's worrying that this article makes global warming appear to be a done deal (even though, until coming here, I was entirely convinced by the "standard theory"). To reject the commentary of learned outside observers (as was explained to me over Dr Will Happer, above) on the basis "non-specialist, no peer-reviewed papers on topic" looks like a recipe for a distorted article. When this much money is being poured in and the doubts of specialists are career-damaging (must be, almost by definition), then editors have a tricky job writing a balanced article. But that's what we're here for. MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 11:30, 1 January 2009 (UTC)
The article reflects what reliable sources have to say about it, while mentioning the opinion of single voices (and linking to an article with their opinions). Giving more weight to these non-specialist, no peer-reviewed papers will break WP:UNDUE. Further, giving that none reliable source rejects the IPCC conclusions, the present inclusion of this minority viewpoints is already in violation of WP:UNDUE in my opinion. --Seba5618 (talk) 18:41, 1 January 2009 (UTC)
I change your link to regular square brackets. The "ref" tag is used for putting footnotes in the actual article.

< "Senate reports have no value at all as a scientific source, find some proper sources" – This is a inconsistent statement - Will some rational person here please explain why a Senate Report stating multiple papers/sources/scientists is not a proper source, but a IPCC Report which is just (if not more) as political is a proper source ? At least the Senate Report links you to each individual source sited so one can do their own research. > — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:15, 1 January 2009

It's not a senate report, but a Senate Committee Minority report. It's not commissioned by the senate (or the committee), it's not discussed there, and it has not been accepted there. But even if the full house unanimously had voted for it, it would still be a purely political document. The IPCC reports, even if you do not seem to know it, are scientific reports - and they, of course, link into the original scientific literature. Inhofe's piece of propaganda, on the other hand, contains people who cannot, in the most generous way, be considered scientists, and it misrepresents several of those that are - and indeed many of the scientists mentioned have protested against this misrepresentation of their work. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 09:21, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Which explains how some users may dismiss Senate Reports, but the argument is fallacious. The Minority senate report is not some paper put together by illiterate senators but a carefully compiled document. It has a political background as the IPCC report does too. To suggest the IPCC is compiled by scientists and the Senate minority is not is to be misleading .. except as an explanation of how those who dismiss the report think. DDB (talk) 12:07, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

I'm a bit surprised that Inhofe is illiterate, although that does explain some things. The IPCC is written by a large group of recognized experts named in the reports. The documents go through several rounds of review. Reviewer comments and replies are available online. Many scientific organizations have endorsed the result. The US National Academy has performed independent in-depth research and endorses the IPCC. I'm sure you can point out who carefully compiled that Inhofe report and why he or she thinks that Nigel Lawson is a scientist? And how somehow 30 or so scientists were counted twice? And why several scientists object to the misrepresentation of their research? No doubt the careful compiler(s) know(s) more about the original researchers results than they know themselves...--Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:56, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Senate minority reports are absolutely not reliable. This is already covered in the FAQ. Raul654 (talk) 16:08, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Neither is this article if one wants to know the whole story. --GoRight (talk) 18:17, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
If people want to know the "whole story", they can go to Exxon's website (and the websites of Exxon's think-tank allies) and get all the denialist propaganda that is lacking from this article. Raul654 (talk) 22:50, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
So you admit the article is horribly biased by omission and that it doesn't tell the reader the "whole story"? I thought we were supposed to avoid that, go figure. --GoRight (talk) 23:06, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
The scope of this article is limited to the science of global warming. Wikipedia policy restricts us to information found in reliable sources; not propaganda masquerading as such. Misinformation from Exxon and its allies does not belong here. However, we do have articles on propaganda, Misinformation, and Climate change denial which would be perfectly appropriate venues for such material. If people want the "whole story" they are welcome to peruse those articles. Raul654 (talk) 19:31, 5 January 2009 (UTC)

Not so arbitrary eb

< Stephan – I’d like to object to your illiterate remark above on the grounds that this is supposed to be a place of thoughtful conversation. In any regard I have an issue with you (Schulz) and Raul654 misrepresenting the “U. S. Senate Minority Report: More Than 650 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims” with link as follows: [2008 Report[2]]

Mr. Schulz, you would have us believe that the Senate Minority Report has no value in debating this article and its signers are dubious in nature. I would think many of the 650 scientists and professionals would have issue with you in that regard and readers/users should review the list of signatories themselves. The point of this section is to reflect upon an ever growing volume of dissenting positions on AGW and how this fact is not adequately represented in the Wikipedia content on this subject. > < Mk >

< BTW Stephan – Are you saying the Inter GOVERNMENTAL Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is not a deriviative of the United Nations political and diplomatic body ? Just to understand, you’re saying there are no politics involved in this UN based governmental panel for those of us with less insight ? I would appreciate you going on record to clarify this - thanks. > < Mk > —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:29, 2 January 2009

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is a reliable source while both Minority and Majority reports from the US Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee are not reliable sources. Yes, the IPCC was formed by the UN, but it's duty is specifically to report on the status of science about climate change. It is specifically prohibited from suggesting policy, and senate committees are all about suggesting and arguing in favor of policy.
Also, please use colons to create indentation and please signing your posts to make reading the talk page easier on the rest of us. - Enuja (talk) 23:53, 2 January 2009 (UTC)
Sorry on not formatting properly... (talk) 00:25, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Let's see - which is credible? A propaganda piece written by staffers for a politiican who claims that global warming is a hoax created by the weather channel to get ratings, who recieves a great deal of money from the energy lobby; or the IPCC, which produces reports based on peer-reviewed scientific publications, whose authors are the most respected climatologists in the world. Hrm... that's a toughy... Raul654 (talk) 00:14, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Raul654 – If you personally want to ride this Y2K wave onto the beach that is your prerogative. I’m more concerned with the young undecided minds reading these articles and evolving their thoughts. In this article;
Wikipedia is describing current increasing temperatures – which is no longer true.
Wikipedia is describing scientific consensus as accepted fact – which is not true.
Wikipedia is focusing on a statistical snapshot of climate variations – which should be in context with the greater geologic temperature record of earth, not isolated to underwrite this particular theory or belief.
There are many eloquent writers herein parsing words to effect their bias, but the intensity of this debate in itself deserves balance of information and a truly neutral article by Wikipedia. (talk) 01:04, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
The Global warming controversy article does need serious improvement. If you want a neutral article about the intensity of the debate, by all means, please improve that article. It's just a function of the current organization and article size guidelines of Wikipedia that everything about Global warming can't fit on one page. So this general, introductory article properly links the interested reader to the controversy article and a ton of other related articles.
About your list of objections: although there appears to be a short-term cooling trend right now, it's also reasonably certain that recent warming was caused by anthropogenic increases in greenhouse gases, and that that warming will pick back up again when the current short-term effects are over. There is a well accepted scientific consensus about what will happen and there are facts: observations about what has happened. Context is relevant, and if you want the context of the greater geologic temperature record of the earth, the appropriate article is linked right at the very top of this article! That's context if I've ever heard of it.
Normally, I cite sources when I state facts, but these facts you are complaining about are sourced in the article. If you find a reliable source that contradicts what the reliable sources used in this article are saying, by all means, please bring that source up here on the talk page. The article WILL change with new reliable sources. But without reliable sources disagreeing with the general data and interpretations presented in this article, this article will not change. - Enuja (talk) 01:25, 3 January 2009 (UTC)
Enuja Kim - I object to you removing my post. This is the type of bias that has Wiki in trouble. For the eager and balanced minds out there I want to debate you on the points above and your first reaction is to remove my posting ! (talk) 21:26, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
Raul's [original edit to the FAQ] is interesting when it comes to gauging potential bias in this article... doubting anthropogenic causation is "eccentric". I wonder what that makes the majority of voters in that state, in his fine opinion. Jaimaster (talk) 00:02, 5 January 2009 (UTC)
Take it up on WP:RS/N if you are in disagreement. Senate blog reports aren't reliable sources, and it is a frequently asked question. As for eccentric, thats rather more neutral than stating that its a fringe viewpoint. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 08:31, 5 January 2009 (UTC)
Had you read the diff a bit more carefully, you would have seen that I said Inhofe's views are eccentric, not denialism in general. Inhofe has said that the earth is not warming (despite the fact that nobody - not even the deniers - deny this anymore) and that ground and satellite measurements confirm this (they don't). He said that global warming is a Big Lie, and a hoax created by the weather channel to get more viewers. He compared the head of the EPA to Tokyo Rose and the EPA to the Gestapo. I could go on but you get the idea. The first word I was going to write there was "extremist" but I thought "eccentric" was a bit more charitable. Raul654 (talk) 19:39, 5 January 2009 (UTC)
I read the dif as carefully as needed... the man might be a clown but the wording or even naming Inhofe was not neccessary to labelling senate reports not reliable sources. BTW, when do we add Greenpeace to the faq as unreliable for believing in santa? ;) (Jaimaster - at home and not logged in -) (talk) 12:50, 6 January 2009 (UTC)
First let me point out that the illiterate senators were brought up by DDB. Also, I'm fine with "Stephan", but if you want to go with a more formal form of address, you might want to get it right. As for the substance: The report in question is not a "Senate Minority Report" but a "Senate Committee Minority Report". Contrary to the impression you seem to have, the report is not signed by 650 scientists. In fact, as far as I can make out, it is not signed by anybody in particular, although Marc Morano and Mathew Dempsey are listed as contacts. Neither of those is a scientist, both are staffers of Inhofe. The report consists of quote-mined material, used without knowledge or even against the explicit statements and comments of the original authors. There no a-priory assumption of reliability for a partisan political document. But moreover, this document is obviously put together with extreme sloppiness. It contains non-scientists, repeated entries, and plain nonsense. The only aim seems to have been quantity of entries, wether right or wrong. How someone can defend this is beyond me. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:00, 6 January 2009 (UTC)

You still haven't addressed the fallacy I pointed out, Stephen. Try not to get sidelined by the irrelevant. You dismiss the substance of the Inhofe report and yet accept unquestioningly the statements of people like [3] that really seem outrageous and unscientific. DDB (talk) 00:47, 7 January 2009 (UTC)

I fail to see the fallacy. Can you elaborate why it would be fallacious to distinguish between a carefully compiled scientific report by a large group of known and respected scientists, endorsed by a huge number of respected scientific organizations, and a political hack? And I unquestioningly accept what? Certainly not the blog you point to, not the article it refers to. I suspect you talk about Hansen's letter to Obama - did you even read the original one? And why do you think you know my reaction to it? --Stephan Schulz (talk) 01:18, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
I think the point DDB is trying to make is that if senate minority report is unreliable because it was written by a loony, so should anything written by other advocates in clown shoes... but the senate minority report is rejected because it really amounts to little more than a partisan advocacy op-ed, while the other loony is (supposed to be) a scientist. Still, id move to strike any direct references to Hansen here. Defending vandals, claiming Australia (sub 2% global GHG emissions) is ruining the world, "fixing" the past to enhance the warming trend... this guy is going off the rails. Jaimaster (talk) 03:20, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
The senate minority report is not a reliable source because it fails WP:RS. Reliable sources are credible published materials with a reliable publication process; their authors are generally regarded as trustworthy or authoritative in relation to the subject at hand.. In this case there wasn't a proper publication process nor the author is trustworthy in relation to the simple as that. --Seba5618 (talk) 17:18, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
Stephan, shouldn't your failure to understand the simple point mean that you should excuse yourself from further comment, allowing those that do to argue meaningfully? Why continue arguing when you don't get a simple point on the issue of a logical fallacy? DDB (talk) 12:49, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
Maybe you should specify your "simple point"? You make unjustified and just plain wrong claims about both the SCMR and the IPCC reports. Your argument seems to be "black is white, therefore building zebra strips to save pedestrians is a fallacy". Well, yes, ex falso quodlibet, but that is not a very useful argument. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:53, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
I'm about to close this discussion because we just seem to be going around and around trying to explain why we don't rely on a cherry-picked report written by the staffers of a US Senator. This is already covered in the FAQ and we're just wasting time. --TS 17:26, 7 January 2009 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Easterbrook Abstract

I went to history to see the copyvio material that's been removed. It's either fraudulent, or it's significant to the discussion. In a nutshell, according to a paper in "Abstracts of American Geophysical Union annual meeting, San Francisco December, 2008" the world is cooling. Don J. Easterbrook is a geologist at the Department of Geology, Western Washington University. He has authored 8 books and 150 journal publications and first publicly predicted global cooling in 2001.

"GLOBAL, cyclic, decadal, climate patterns can be traced over the past millennium in glacier fluctuations, oxygen isotope ratios in ice cores, sea surface temperatures, and historic observations."

There have been at least 23 periods of climatic warming and cooling in the past 500 years, each one lasting an average of 27 years. Global cooling occurred from 1880 to ~1915; global warming occurred from ~1915 to ~1945; global cooling occurred from ~1945-1977;, global warming occurred from 1977 to 1998; and global cooling has occurred since 1998.

"The global cooling that has occurred since 1998 is exactly in phase with the long term pattern".

The IPCC predicted global warming of 0.6° C (1° F) by 2011 and 1.2° C (2° F) by 2038, whereas Easterbrook (2001) predicted the beginning of global cooling by 2007 (± 3–5 yrs) and cooling of about 0.3–0.5° C until ~2035. The predicted cooling seems to have already begun. Recent measurements of global temperatures suggest a gradual cooling trend since 1998 and 2007–2008 was a year of sharp global cooling. The cooling trend will likely continue as the sun enters a cycle of lower irradiance and the Pacific Ocean changed from its warm mode to its cool mode. ... “Global warming” (i.e., the warming since 1977) is over. I'll not go on - either Easterbrook had tomatoes thrown at him at this meeting, or else a quick synopsis of claims like this belong in the article, and not tucked away somewhere else. MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 14:15, 4 January 2009 (UTC)

Yes, some papers on almost any scientific subject you care to mention will express, and vigorously defend, an alternative view. We weigh sources and decide which to give most prominence. I don't see a good reason here to give great prominence to the conclusions of Easterbrook. We're not saying he's wrong, or that he's right. It's just that his views don't carry much weight at the current state of climate science. --TS 14:46, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
Just a quick note, AGU conference abstracts are not peer reviewed. Anybody can write an abstract that says whatever they want, as long as it's at least vaguely relevant to the topic of the session. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 16:29, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
Yes, and that speaks to weight. There's another point about MalcolmMacdonald's argument above that should probably be addressed. If I understand his argument, he says he believes that Easterbrook's 2001 paper gave a more accurate prediction of the global average temperature for 2001-2008 than the models considered by IPCC, therefore Easterbrook is right, therefore we should include Easterbrook's predictions in the article. This would be wrong for two reasons: firstly, a Wikipedian comparing the accuracy of predictions and using that alone to determine content is a matter of original research. Secondly, the standard for inclusion on Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth. Even if we were 100% sure and some other (independent) source agreed with us that Easterbrook was right, we would still have to evaluate the source for reliability. To put it another way, there is no short cut past the verifiability criterion. If Easterbrook (or any other scientist) is right, we can afford to wait for the reliable sources to provide us with verification. Meanwhile we report what the reliable sources do tell us, we don't try to second-guess what they will say next year. --TS 16:42, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
Let me emphasise that I only know what I've seen in the popular press - chiefly the Independent (but matched exactly for alarmism in the Times). I'd been sold on much more extreme effects than quoted here, 5' of sea-level rise by 2100 (100m thereafter? or was it 100'?), 2 more positive feedback loops leading to a potential 15deg C peak with catastrophic results indeed.
So I'm startled to discover from this discussion page that the opposing case is actually credible too. Perhaps more significantly, it's backed by serious scientific and engineering heads - with no particular financial interests to protect.
And I'm startled by the opposite effect going on at another article - seen on ITV a month ago was the famous popular archaeologist Tony Robinson telling us of the Snowball Earth theory, exactly as if it was scientific orthodoxy. But even mention of this "popular view" has been, and has to be, suppressed at Snowball Earth, no mention allowed. Strange that. MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 18:24, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
"Let me emphasise that I only know what I've seen in the popular press." I think that's your problem right there. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 18:27, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
This isn't a discussion forum for determining the truth of global warming. It's a discussion page on a wiki, and the topic is how we can improve the article on global warming within the content policies of Wikipedia.
Despite any appearances to the contrary, Tony Robinson really isn't an expert on climatology. He's an actor. --TS 18:49, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
I fear Boris may have noted your weak point. However... if Easterbrooks point was any good, you would be able to find something better than an abstract to support it with William M. Connolley (talk) 21:26, 4 January 2009 (UTC)

I've split the recent discussion about an abstract into a new section. The abstract in question is available from the American Geophysical Union's website here [4]. (I'm not sure if that link will work for others, but all I did is search for Easterbrook on this search page [5] and then chose the "Solar Influence on ..." link.) First of all, we can't use abstracts as sources on pages. Second of all, we do have a mention in the article that short-term future warming is not expected. Third, we do have the a section in this article devoted to Solar variation, and it links to a main article about Solar Variation. I looked at Don J. Easterbrook's website [6], and searched for his publications, and, so far as I can find, he hasn't actually published any articles about global warming and the IPCC predictions. Other parts of his research, yes, meeting abstracts about global warming, yes, but no articles about Global warming. As far as I can tell from the meeting abstracts, his position is consistent with positions in published articles that are covered, both in the Solar Variation section of this wikipedia article, and in the Solar variation article. So I really don't think there is anything to do to change this article in light of this abstract.

Personally, I wish that this article was less focused on the IPCC's near to mid term predictions, and more focused on long term predictions, because those seem much more stable and well supported. Personally, I don't care whether the warming in the latter half of the 20th Century was due to Anthropogenic effects or not - I do care that anthropogenic changes in greenhouse gases are extremely likely to cause changes in climate in the next 200 years, and I wish that this article would focus more and that and less on details of current temperature. But that would require a fair bit of re-organization of this article, Attribution of recent climate change and Instrumental temperature record, and I have neither the ambition nor the interest to re-organize the articles. - Enuja (talk) 20:10, 4 January 2009 (UTC)

You will find that various people (including me) disagree with your personal view. Attribution is important, and needs to be covered. Future change past 100 years is only very lightly covered by the literature (or was; perhaps that is changing) William M. Connolley (talk) 21:26, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
First - Thank You Malcolm McDonald. Second - I bet you (Enuja) wish there was no debate on this issue from a review of your past edits and comments, but I still object your to Kim D. Petersen's efforts to censor my comments. Now can we debate the points in question ? ..and start where we left off – on this statement which starts the article “This article is about the current period of increasing global temperature” ? ..or will you just remove my future postings ? (talk) 21:40, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
Please assume good faith and keep a cool head please. I was the one who removed your posting - and the reason that i gave was this[7]: "rv Copyvio. Please post links if you want to discuss such. And why exactly would Easterbrook be more reliable than a host of others?". It wasn't "censored", but removed because you broke copyright, by inserting a complete article. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 21:59, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
I only assume that you are a true master of parsing the written word and employing your own guidelines. I am both impressed and overwhelmed by your eloquent rebuttals and sheer determination and consistency by which you watch over all things related to AGW. I also assume that I will be burned at the stake (happened often during the last ice age) for presenting different views. But aside from that, I will continue to offer an argument for more balanced content in this article and related subjects. Mk (talk) 23:30, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
I didn't know that they burned people at the stakes more than 10,000 years ago :-). We certainly do not do so here. May i point out that you aught to read WP:AGF, WP:SOAP, WP:RS and finally WP:WEIGHT, which will all significantly help you in presenting your differing view, in a way so that it will be effective here. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 10:41, 5 January 2009 (UTC)
Kim - Please check the Little Ice Age in your own Wikipedia (LIA) which existed ~roughly between 1650-1850 (although there is some debate on the beginning). The fact that you are editing AGW content with great fervor and do not know of the LIA or the resulting tragedies is really alarming ! I think you need to spend less time defining guidelines and more actually researching the subject matter. < Mk > (talk) 04:55, 10 January 2009 (UTC)
There's just the little problem here that the LIA wasn't an iceage - but is just called it. Which was my point. The last ice age happened >10,000 years ago. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 15:05, 15 January 2009 (UTC)
Person operating from IP addresses &, your posts won't be deleted if you carefully follow all of the guidelines. Since you don't know all of the guidelines, learn from when you break them, and you'll have fewer and fewer posts deleted. - Enuja (talk) 22:10, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
That would be me - Mark. I have nothing to hide other than the fact that I'm not as technically literate as some of you, so I have not come up to speed on all your guidelines. For that I apologize and seek your patience. Mk (talk) 23:30, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
I, personally, do not care what the italic text at the top of the article says. I'm starting a new section below to discuss what that disambiguation language should say. I actually think that Wikipedia's biggest flaw is that it works best when an issue has false controversy: when tons of people come to challenge the content. That challenge must be met with reliable sources, so the article improves. There is a certain amount of controversy that makes editing difficult or impossible, and it can get very frustrating to say the same thing over and over again, but, personally, I think that the political and popular controversy has created a much better article about Global warming than would exist if there were not political and popular objections to the science. - Enuja (talk) 22:10, 4 January 2009 (UTC)
Looking in the archives I see that the Easterbrook stuff has cropped up before. Perhaps it should be added to the FAQ. --TS 17:28, 7 January 2009 (UTC)
I think its too specific. I feel we should keep the FAQ short and focused on the main points. Splette :) How's my driving? 23:48, 7 January 2009 (UTC)

Disambiguation Language

The disambiguation language at the top of the article is regularly challenged by new (and some long-standing) editors, although it is unchanged since its apparent first insertion [8]. It currently reads

This article is about the current period of increasing global temperature. For other periods of warming in Earth's history, see Paleoclimatology and Geologic temperature record.

How about...

For past Climate change see Paleoclimatology and Geologic temperature record.

After all, "global warming" is defined as the first sentence of this article: why define it before that? I also think that the climate change article should be linked in disambiguation language if we have any disambiguation language. - Enuja (talk) 22:10, 4 January 2009 (UTC)

I think that would be okay. The repetition seems unnecessary. --TS 23:27, 4 January 2009 (UTC)

I believe the opening paragraph should reflect some of the content used in Wikipedia Y2K article such as “This fear was fueled by the attendant press coverage and other media speculation, as well as corporate and government reports.” Or “While no significant computer failures occurred with global significance when the clocks rolled over into 2000, preparation for the Y2K bug had a significant effect on the computer industry.“ The Global Warming article should probably read “While no significant temperature increases were noted after 2001, preparation for AGW had a significant effect on many governmental policies that took many years to undue.“ < Mk > —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:12, 10 January 2009 (UTC)

Scientific uncertainty

An editor has created this article and categorised it as a climate article diff. As this isn't really my area, perhaps interested experts here could comment on the article talk page? All the best Tim Vickers (talk) 18:41, 5 January 2009 (UTC)

Ice Age

Do you people know that 20 years ago the schools were telling kids in their science books that in 25 years there would be another Ice Age? What happened to that? Now it's Global Warming?!?!?!?!  ????? (since I'm only 13 my uncle told me this...he was in like 5th grade or something.) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:27, 7 January 2009 (UTC)

Stephan - Did you even read the global cooling article in Wikipedia ? To the contrary, at the time they believed they had as much “science” and “consensus” on the subject as what is being put forth in this article. < Mk > (talk) 05:22, 10 January 2009 (UTC)
Who is "they"? From our article: " This hypothesis never had significant scientific support". Or see "There was no scientific consensus in the 1970s that the Earth was headed into an imminent ice age. Indeed, the possibility of anthropogenic warming dominated the peer-reviewed literature even then" from this article in the ]Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society? --Stephan Schulz (talk) 08:20, 10 January 2009 (UTC)
Is that anything like saying, "The hypothesis on Global Warming doesn't have any significant scientific support?" I'm not saying it doesn't, but it's wrong for you to suggest that there's no scientific support against anthropogenic GW, the same as saying there was no scientific support for global cooling then. Perhaps the reason there is so much more support for GW than global cooling in the 70's is that information and studies are so much more available these days. Maybe the reason GW is such a big deal now is because places like MySpace and MTV make it so much more marketable. Personally, I see a lot of hype and not a lot of proof.HillChris1234 (talk) 20:37, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
MTV doesn't show scientific evidence - you have to look for it - scientific journals are a good place to start. One person who has decent scientific reasons to be a skeptic is Dick Lindsen. You'll have no problem finding other writings that say that global warming is a big issue. For an introduction to thought a century ago, Arrhenius wrote an article "On the influence of Carbonic Acid upon the temperature" or something like that. It's available online. So maybe take a break from the argument and look for the evidence. Key things are greenhouse gases of all varieties and how they trap in heat through bond vibration and the effects of the Earth's albedo (clouds and snow/ice and water are important). I'm no expert on this, but if you want to discuss further, try my talk page so we don't fill up the article's talk page with things that aren't directly related to improving it. Awickert (talk) 20:47, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

Talk:Global warming/FAQ

Great job, guys! I haven't really been tracking this article in quite some time and had been unaware of the existence of the FAQ. Every controversial Wikipedia article should have such a FAQ!

I notice that there is no mention of Urban heat islands in the FAQ. Perhaps someone should add it?

--Richard (talk) 00:59, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

Question (Temperature in Germany)

Wie ist es naturwissenschaftlich (Geographie der Norderdkugel) moeglich, dass in Deutschland am 7.1.2009 Temperaturen von minus 23 Grad Celsius; minus 23.2 Grad Celsius; minus 26,2 Grad Celsius; minus 27,5 Grad Celsius; minus 27,7 Grad Celsius;; minus 24,1 Grad Celsius;; minus 21,5 Grad Celsius; minus 23 Grad Celsius; minus 20,8 Grad Celsius gemessen werden?

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:35, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

Mit einem Thermometer. Please use English on the English Wikipedia. Thanks. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 10:44, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

Global warming edits on unrelated articles

Yesterday I reverted a number of edits by a new user called Erstats, who inserted information questioning global warming into articles such as Jerry E. Smith, The End of Oil, Mortality rate, Adnan Zaidi, and so on. This inserted information seemed very out of place in these articles and I asked the editor to instead raise the issues in this article.

Unfortunately, Erstats reinserted all of these edits, claiming they are relevant to the articles and have citations. Could an editor with more experience in both editing this global warming article and the associated articles please check out these edits and see if they are indeed relevant and correct. Thank you. --SouthernNights (talk) 21:58, 9 January 2009 (UTC)

Scibaby strikes again. I've blocked him. Someone please look through his contribs and revert every climate related edit he's ever made. Raul654 (talk) 22:03, 9 January 2009 (UTC)
Many thanks. I was suspicious about his edits and thought it might be a blocked editor, but didn't know enough about the edit wars on this subject to be sure.--SouthernNights (talk) 23:48, 9 January 2009 (UTC)
I've looked through and removed those you missed, i'm not certain if thats all - so it would be nice with a third check ;) --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 02:07, 10 January 2009 (UTC)

Resources list

Here is a list of resources for those who can edit this article (I can't). This post will of course be purged shortly, but perhaps a fellow heretic will spot it first and bookmark this treasure trove of heretical information. I've had to break the link because the domain (a forum host) is considered "spam" by Wikipedia (no surprise). Remove the asterisk to fix it (I predict the justification for deleting this will be "circumvention of spam filter"): http://z4.invision* —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:18, 10 January 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jaymax (talkcontribs)

There is a reason Wikipedia does not use forums to find sources. Let's face it, no matter how many sources Andrew can spam on that page (and repeat over and over again), the basic principle that he is directly interpreting studies he is unqualified to interpret remains the same. It seems on that page he has only 404s, repeated sources, useless sources (ones entirely irrelevant to global warming), misquoted sources (ones that essentially contradict his claim, or at least do not make it), other unqualified sources (such as newspaper articles, propaganda, nutjob blogs, etc.), and, and there are very many of these, misused primary sources. Those primary sources simply do not support the overarching claim he is making, but even if they did, his claims still would be invalid because he handpicked those sources out of a sea of information to the contrary.
tl;dr: don't even consider using this source. Eebster the Great (talk) 04:49, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

IPCC Climate Models

Can someone please present one of the IPCC climate models that accurately projected the leveling off of temperatures after 1998 and the resultant cooling since that point? It would be especially interesting to see one that projected the 2008 cooling. If there is not at least one peer reviewed climate model that can show such projections (even as late as 2003), should we not rewrite the section on how climate models are used in the IPCC reports ? < Mk > (talk) 05:30, 10 January 2009 (UTC)

The prediction for 2008:

The measurements:

Count Iblis (talk) 12:59, 10 January 2009 (UTC)

That one's simple enough to answer, that even I can give it a shot. There has been no leveling off of temperatures after 1998, nor has there been any cooling. One cool year does not a trend make. And even though 2008 was cooler than 2007, it does not in any way indicate a cooling trend. And even if it were, it would be no reason to rewrite the section on how climate models are used in the IPCC reports. For we, as simple Wikipedians, cannot change how the IPCC used climate models. We are mere functionaries, bound to accurately report what third-party, reliable, verifiable sources tell us to write. And if the IPCC used climate models in a certain way, we must report how they used them—tragic though it seems. -Atmoz (talk) 03:18, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
How can you possibly look at the graph included in the second link above and flatly say that there has been no leveling off and cooling since 1998?? Do you need to get your eyes checked? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:16, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
Iblis - Your comments and data are absurd. All the main agencies are now formally reporting 2008 to be the coolest year in the last decade. Its one thing to inject bias, but its another to just outright lie about the data. < Mk > (talk) 00:20, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Please read WP:CIV. Count Iblis has not made any comment, but just pointed to two reliable sources. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 00:42, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Atmoz - Please provide one ( just one! ) IPCC climate model that adequately predicted the downturn in temperatures ? If that cannot be done, it calls into question the whole IPCC theory and this article must reflect the incorrect assumptions they (IPCC) based on their data (climate models) on - period. Let’s end this charade – provide the model. < Mk > (talk) 00:27, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Look at Iblis's source; there has not been a "downturn in temperatures." Indeed, some months in 2008 were cold (such as January) whereas others were very hot (such as March). The overall trend for the past century has not been invalidated by monthly temperature fluctuations. Eebster the Great (talk) 04:58, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

Updating temperature chart

World temperatures collapsed in 2008, exposing the global warming movement as a fraud and hoax. When will the temperature chart be updated to reflect this? (talk) 19:51, 11 January 2009 (UTC)

Reliable sources please. --TS 20:08, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Would someone be willing to look into this for resources? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:11, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Our temperature chart is based in the Hadley center data [10]. Global temperature data is not collected in real time. Currently, monthly data for 2008 is only available until November, and the yearly update has not yet happened. I assume someone (hopefully User: Dragons flight) will update the chart shortly after the data becomes available. However, while 2008 probably was a bit colder than 2007, it was still among the 10 warmest years on record, and warmer than e.g. 1999 or 2000, and much warmer than 1996. Whoever claimed a "collapse" and "fraud" either has no idea what he is speaking about, or lies. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:34, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, look at all of the warming that HadCrut shows in the last decade. Oren0 (talk) 23:10, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Oren, you should know better than to fall for this cherry picking. As we all now, 1997/98 had an extreme El Nino and 2007/2008 has a moderate to strong La Nina. That's why climate is defined over longer periods of time. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 23:25, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Fine, 20 years then. 1988 wasn't anomalous as far as I know, but the last 20 years of temperature might as well be a graph of random noise. Oh, I forgot that the if temperatures rise over a few decades it's "climate" but that if they flatline or fall for a decade it's "weather". Oren0 (talk) 00:54, 12 January 2009 (UTC)
Frikkin' a-right, Oren!!! I was pointing out on another discussion piece below that a theory is only a "scientific theory" when a group of UN yes-men scientists say it is, and not when independent scientists and universities say it is. For example, when I suggested a National Geographic article that suggested that warming was happening on other celestial bodies, I was told that was a fringe-argument and that it didn't belong. I'm still not sure how that has nothing to do with Global Warming, and I'm not sure how National Geographic doesn't count as a reliable scientific source, but apparently if the point of view has nothing to do with Capitalism destroying the world, it doesn't belong in this "scientific" article. I'm especially impressed with how the section that mentions any kind of disagreement on GW is cutely called "Economic and Political Debate", as if to say that any kind of debate can't be scientific because there are NO scientists that disagree on global warming. And Schultz, please don't respond with this "reliable source" garbage. You know they're out there, you just choose to ignore them because they don't fall into the socialist argument in this article. HillChris1234 (talk) 17:26, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
¿Does this NG articles make the case that whatever is warming other celestial bodies is warming earth as well?. If not then it just doesn't belong here. --Seba5618 (talk) 17:37, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Why not? If Jupiter is getting hotter, Mars is getting hotter and Pluto is getting hotter, wouldn't it make sense to mention that as a common denominator in an article on the Earth getting hotter? HillChris1234 (talk) 17:45, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Because that will be WP:OR, we can't draw conclusions that aren't sourced. --Seba5618 (talk) 17:49, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Also see Talk:Global warming/FAQ#Mars_.28or_Jupiter.2C_or_Pluto.29_is_warming.2C_too_.28so_it.27s_the_sun.21.29. In short, Jupiter shows cyclical climate change, not overall warming, we have little data for Pluto (we don't even know it exists for one of Pluto's years, and we have not a single direct temperature measurement), but good hypotheses why it might still warming shortly after its closest approach to the sun, and the NatGeo article on Mars has two parts, with the second part containing statements like "His views are completely at odds with the mainstream scientific opinion" and "the idea just isn't supported by the theory or by the observations".[11] --Stephan Schulz (talk) 23:02, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
This page isn't for fighting the "global warming wars". Try the blogosphere. --TS 01:02, 12 January 2009 (UTC)
It's not a "war," it's a debate. GW advocates are treating it like a war, because they're afraid of any voice that disagrees with them. GW is the biggest tool in modern times that is used to fight capitalism, and you guys are fighting a "war" to keep that weapon in your hands. HillChris1234 (talk) 17:45, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Actually, the blogosphere is where Oren seems to get much of his information. "Try the scientific literature" would be a better suggestion. And yes, I know I'm as guilty at arguing this here as he is...
(ec)"Might as well be random noise" - well, I wonder why there is no linear trend fitted to that data, as it was for the other. Or why that plot stops in January 2008 and does not continue to, say, March, when the anomaly was up to +0.45 degrees again. Yes, climate trends are usually observed over several decades, not a single one. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 01:11, 12 January 2009 (UTC)
Seriously, I'm as tempted to continue arguing as are you. And I say "blogosphere" because clearly Oren0 wants to have a long argument, and he won't be able to have much of an argument with umpteen hundred scientific papers, will he? But the only thing that can keep this talk page from becoming even more cluttered with pointless arguments over the pros and cons is for us to keep our focus. The page is for discussing how best to improve the article, and the article itself reflects the scientific consensus on global warming. The arguments can take place on any of thousands and thousands of discussion forums and blogs, but not here. Here is special because this is not where these things are decided. We only write up the consensus. --TS 01:34, 12 January 2009 (UTC)
Why not? You can certainly argue with umpteen hundred scientific papers that disagree with global warming. The blogosphere isn't a reliable source of information, and in all honesty neither is Wikipedia. It's a playground for public opinion, not scientific study. In that light, the only difference between Wikipedia and the Blogosphere is that the information here is based on majority rule, which leaves little argument from dissenting voices whether they are scientific or not. The sad truth of the matter is that when you google most things, the first result is that thing's Wikipedia article. There are so many school children and university students who are writing papers and basing their careers and professional opinions based on things they read on Wikipedia, and the fact that those opinions could just be some random biased POV like most of this article, it's really scary, and the GW-ghestappo who keeps this article on such a short-leash should really know better. You all know there is legitimate scientific debate on global warming, and those of you who choose to keep that voice out of this article should really be ashamed of yourselves. This article is not science, it's propaganda and indoctrination. HillChris1234 (talk) 17:41, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
"...with umpteen hundred scientific papers that disagree with global warming" - name ten. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:53, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

A few days ago I grabbed the HadCRUT3 monthly dataset from here (format, data) to try different plots of it. I dumped the data into Microsoft Excel to do the plots. I wasn't going to share the results here because you would all whine about it being WP:OR and because I didn't really expect to do anything with it here, but since Oren0 and Stephan were discussing the very same time periods I had plotted I thought I would share.

Excel lets you apply a number of trend lines to the data plots. I chose to do three different trend lines: linear, 5th order polynomial, and 60 month moving average. The only thing special about the 5th order polynomial is that this is the highest odd numbered polynomial the tool supports. Obviously I am not trying to suggest that climate temperatures actually follow a 5th order polynomial for some reason, it was just an easy way to get a reasonable curve to fit the dataset. The other two are obvious choices given the other plots available in the literature. I had the tool include the R^2 values so you could assess the quality of the fit.

The 10 year plot is available here, and the 20 year plot is available here. I am only posting this here because it directly relates to the discussion above and because it will probably be of general interest to the participants. --GoRight (talk) 03:35, 12 January 2009 (UTC)

(ec) Since this has come up many many times: [12][13][14][15]; I've decided to take a little action. There is now a figure at Image:Instrumental-Temperature-Record.svg which approximates Robert Rhode's original as closely as I can, and for which I have provided the full script to generate the plot, pulling the latest data directly from the online source. New versions of that figure can thus be generated by anyone, simply by running the script, the very second the CRU updates their data. This is not intended as a replacement for Robert Rhode's work. Instead, it is intended to be in the spirit of the FAQ: a place we can point these people to rather than have to try and explain, time after time, that despite what they've heard, global temperatures have not plunged dramatically in the last few years, and an "updated" chart won't show them what they're hoping to see. -- Leland McInnes (talk) 03:45, 12 January 2009 (UTC)

That chart looks good. Can't wait until it's official so I can point my friends to this page showing that we've turned the corner and in another 10 years the AGW wackos will have egg on their face. Thanks. (talk) 05:46, 12 January 2009 (UTC)
I'll second that. (talk) 22:19, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
I've updated to the new image incorporating the 2008 point. I have no objections to it being reverted, as I think the .png image looked a little nicer than the .svg version. -Atmoz (talk) 21:08, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
I've reverted it for now, because the December 2008 data is still not in (see the HadCrut data file [16]), hence the 2008 temperature is not final. I also like the old one better from an esthetic point of view, but that's less important. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:31, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
We should put the new pic in. Could wait for dec 2008 but it doesn't really matter. Ignore the anons William M. Connolley (talk) 22:35, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
I would recommend sticking with the original. There are some quirks in how the SVG is rendered when scaled down (fonts particularly) that means that it looks worse. User: Dragons flight is usually good at updating these things, so we may as well wait. -- Leland McInnes (talk) 23:52, 13 January 2009 (UTC)

Thanks to everyone for their work, links, and explanations of what's going on regarding the chart. I think we should wait until the data from December is available, and then update the chart in the same way as was done a year ago, and then continue updating it the same way every year. Grundle2600 (talk) 16:15, 15 January 2009 (UTC)

The new graph looks good--but the 5 year running average goes all the way to the end, which is different from the current version.SeaAndSand (talk) 13:07, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

Alternative theories

I would like to point out that there are several alternative theories out there to what is happening to the earth, eg. global cooling. Skimming through the article, I didn't see any mention of such thing - I was wondering whether someone could create a section on "Other theories" or "controversies," or at the least, add a link in the "see also" area to other theories on what is happening to the world climate-wise. just to "fairly represent other views on the issue," and insure that wikipedia doesn't become someone's opinion - which i think we all agree is definitely not the purpose of wiki. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:10, 11 January 2009 (UTC)

It's there already: Global_warming#Economic_and_political_debate. --McSly (talk) 20:15, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
Also, there is the solar variation section and links to a lot of related topics in the infobox at the bottom. This includes global cooling, although that is not a (scientific) theory. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:18, 11 January 2009 (UTC)
I'm getting thoroughly sick of this constant "no need for that because it's covered in some hidden document that we ensure no one will ever read" as a very lame excuse for a neutral unbiased article. This really does do a lot of harm to the reputation of Wikipedia and the people pursuing this vendetta against the free exchange of information on this subject should be ashamed of themselves. (talk) 00:48, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Negative feedback from water vapor

This article violates NPOV by stating as fact that there is positive feedback from water vapor, even though Roy Spencer found evidence of a negative feedback: (talk) 00:20, 13 January 2009 (UTC)

No, Spencer found (or claims to have found) a small negative feedback due to a reduction in ice cloud coverage. Clouds are not water vapor, but either liquid water or, in this case, ice. Our article correctly describes cloud-based feedbacks as "an area of ongoing research" and mentions the difficulty of accounting for them in current climate models ("Whether the net effect is warming or cooling depends on details such as the type and altitude of the cloud. These details are difficult to represent in climate models..."). --Stephan Schulz (talk) 00:31, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
Oh yes, U R right. I missed that (talk) 04:51, 13 January 2009 (UTC)

Should there be an article on Jim Titus?


Jim Titus contacted me to advise me that someone had wikilinked his name in Adaptation to global warming. Since we don't have an article on him, this resulted in a redlink. I unlinked his name and advised him to read WP:BIO. He humbly responded that he doesn't have the perspective to determine whether he meets the criteria for an article on himself. I don't have enough knowledge about this area either. Can someone else who knows more than I look into this and make a determination? You can refer to the discussions on his talk page and mine. If you decide to create an article on him, please let us know by leaving a note on our Talk pages. Thanx!

--Richard (talk) 20:16, 15 January 2009 (UTC)

I think he's notable enough for a WP biography.[17] -Atmoz (talk) 20:47, 15 January 2009 (UTC)
...but that adaption page is awful. No matter how good JT is (Ive never heard of him, but so what) he shouldn' be the sole source for that section. Someone has just copied his stuff into that page. And then copied someone else's into the next section. Gack William M. Connolley (talk) 21:15, 15 January 2009 (UTC)

A question

Why isn't there a "criticism" portion like in many other theories or ideas or what have you?

The article here: should be referenced here in my opinion. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:18, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:22, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

Criticism sections are usually discouraged. We mention all competing theories with their due weight in the corresponding sections, see in particular the "Solar variation" section. The controversy is mentioned in the lede. tThe controversy article is linked from the term public debate and again from the "Causes" panel of the infobox at the bottom of the article. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:28, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, I think criticism sections don't belong. But, it's funny that... you notice that the more right-wing the subject is, the bigger the criticism section.HillChris1234 (talk) 17:17, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
I'd like to see a double-blind randomized study on that, please. And how do you measure right-winginess of a subject? --Stephan Schulz (talk) 17:26, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Why exactly do you take offense to that?HillChris1234 (talk) 20:50, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Mu. I do want to know if you even made a potentially testable claim, and if yes, I would to know how this claim has been tested. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 08:44, 17 January 2009 (UTC)

I think he's right.. it seems like Wikipedia is turning into a liberal cesspool.

That's my opinion, mind you. Thank you for at least listening. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:59, 17 January 2009 (UTC)

The simple answer to that question, is that whenever anyone questinning the dogma on global warming has contributed to the article, a group of people have got together to have that addition removed. This not only does harm to the article and makes it less believable (as you say most articles do have contrary views whose present tends to validate the majority view as being an arguable view, rather than a force fed dogma) not only does it add credibility to the article, but it enhances the reputation of Wikipedia. (talk) 00:45, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

That Scary Chart

I love the chart at the top of the page showing the temperature anomaly. It's got the scary hockey stick that jumps out at people and says "IT'S GETTING HOT!!!". Funny that when you actually look at the range, we're talking about a temperature ANOMALY... not a change... of about a fraction of a degree Celsius over a couple-hundred years. Also, I can't help but to notice the little dip at the very right of the graph is the sharpest decline since the 1960's. I guess when the temperature starts going back up we'll refresh that image, but not until then, huh?HillChris1234 (talk) 17:17, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

I see the little dip. By all means, update it if you have a more recent one.
As for the 1 °C, that's actually a lot in terms of effects on sea level - look up thermal expansion of water and equilibrium line altitude on glaciers. Another big worry is the potential feedbacks. I would love if there were some kind of negative-feedback-buffering effect (something of this sort is suggested with cloud cover), but it looks like there could be pretty strong positive feedbacks, where increasing temps due to increasing CO2 cause more water vapor in the atmosphere (which is also a greenhouse gas), which could melt permafrost and expel more CO2, etc. etc. So that's the big deal. If there weren't feedbacks, we could burn fossil fuels to our heart's content and get maybe, 2.5 degrees C of change by the time we had released the last bit of stored carbon in fossil fuel, which would take a while. But the feedbacks make that change possible after burning much, much less.
Awickert (talk) 17:39, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
T4 is a power negative feedback, no? -Atmoz (talk) 17:46, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
...I don't follow. What I see, which I think is wrong, is some arbitrary T (maybe temperature?) raised to the fourth power... are you talking about curve-fitting the rise in temperature? You've totally lost me. Awickert (talk) 19:35, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Stefan–Boltzmann law -Atmoz (talk) 19:43, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
OK.... but we're really not talking about changing the black-body balance between the earth and the sun, and the one thing that can change is the albedo with melting ice and such - so are you talking about how temperature scales with the fourth root of 1/(1-albedo)? Which isn't a negative feedback, so it probably isn't. Please explain what you're trying to say.... Awickert (talk) 20:02, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
The energy emitted by the Earth rises with the 4th power of the (absolute) temperature. That is your negative feedback - if the Earth becomes a little bit warmer, it sheds a lot more energy via radiation. This is why a small forcing does not change the temperature of the earth beyond all bounds. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:33, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Oh, duh, right. I'm an idiot. Of course it would have to go back into balance with the solar input. But that would be radiation at the top of the atmosphere - so with greenhouse gases, the lower atmosphere could still be warmer because of heat trapped down there, right? Maybe I should take this to your talk page. Awickert (talk) 00:45, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
The plot shows the temperature anomaly for the full instrumental temperature records. If you want to see a hockey stick, look at File:2000_Year_Temperature_Comparison.png. I don't know which dip you are talking about (the yearly temperature or the 5 year smoothed average), but there are many recent year-to year drops that are larger - e.g. 1998 to 1999. As discussed above, the figure is up to date for the released yearly data - the figure includes 2007 data, and HadCrutdata for 2008 is not yet complete. I expect we will update the graph as soon as the final data is published. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:40, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

Global cooling?

Should there be more discussion about the recent trend toward global cooling? Some of the recent data indicates "The Hadley Centre for Climate Change, part of the UK Met Office, tracks global temperature and shows a big drop in global temperature anomalies since January 2007. Based on the HadCRUT3 system of observed temperatures, global surface temperature anomalies have been trending down since 2001. January 2008 had the coldest anomaly since 1995."

I'm not sure how best to handle this. Thanks. Trent370 (talk) 18:24, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

There is no trend toward global cooling. There was not a big drop in global temperatures since January 2007. 2008 was one of the top 10 warmest since the beginning of the surface instrument temperature record. Global surface temperature have not been trending down since 2001 (I haven't actually done the regression, but it sure ain't statistically significant). January 2008 was not the coldest anomaly since 1995. Fixed. -Atmoz (talk) 19:48, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
Not to mention that these short time-scales are - there is a lot of variance in the climate system. That's why people always show the whole post-industrial climate record to show that there is a clear positive trend in global temperature. Awickert (talk) 20:04, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
That clear positive trend in the post-industrial period should be viewed within the context of the last 400,000 years of climate records. When reviewed in this manner, the positive trend you sight is not statistically significant. It is at best a small part of a recurring cycle. Why would one purposely enhance or focus on a small part (trend) of a recurring cycle ?
It would be like walking on the beach and choosing a wavy line in the drifting sand and picking one small uptick in one of the curves and suggesting you could determine the future of the beach by focusing on that one small section of the drift line as a trend. Come on people – let’s use some common sense. < Mk > (talk) 03:55, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

To remain within the wikipedia policy of Npov the article has to mention recent cooling, afterall within the context of an article about "what is happening" recent cooling is far more important than historical warming, and to completely omit the recent period of cooling whilst giving overwhelming predominance to a period of warming at the end of the last century is clearly one POV. (talk) 22:00, 16 January 2009 (UTC)
You can read what the Hadley folk themselves say here William M. Connolley (talk) 22:20, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

"There is no trend toward global cooling."

This is double speak and nonsense straight out of 1984. This chart shows that we have just experienced the largest drop in the five year trend since the 1960s. How exactly is this "no trend toward global cooling"?

"2008 was one of the top 10 warmest since the beginning of the surface"

Of course, temperatures move in a relatively smooth manner. It is perfectly possible to be in a cooling trend coming down from the recent peak, and still have one of the 10 warmest years ever recorded. We are not saying all of the warming has been erased. The point is that the current trend shows cooling. Any objective observer looking at the chart pasted above would agree with this. (talk) 21:06, 17 January 2009 (UTC)

(A) Your definition of "trend" (where you incorrectly characterized current drop as being the longest 5 year drop since hte 1960s) is so trivial as to render the term "trend" meaningless. You might as well talk about a "trend" towards global cooling because December was colder than November.
(B) Of course, temperatures move in a relatively smooth manner - absolutely 100% wrong. Temperature data is noisy. Just to give one example, 1998 was substantially warmer (a full degree C) than 1997 or 1999. Raul654 (talk) 21:13, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
(A) I didn't say the "longest" drop. I said the "largest" drop. If you look at the drop in the five year average from the latest peak to the current level, there has not been a drop that large since the 1960s. Anything that hasn't happened in over 40 years cannot be dismissed as trivial random noise.
(B) When I say temperatures move in a smooth manner, I mean that the previous year's temperature provides some information about the current year's temperature. This is unarguably true. The point is even though we are in a cooling trend, it will take several years to erase the twenty years of warming we experienced. (talk) 21:24, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
If you look at the 5 year average, you might want to think about how there can be a 5 year average for 2008 if there is no data for 2009 and 2010 (and, for that matter, no final data for 2008). And if you look at the program, you can see how this is achieved: The data set is extended at the end by adding a mirrored copy of the data for last 10 years. That means that the (preliminary) data for fairly cold 2008 is used twice, as is the data for 2007. Thus, the "five year average" shows a spurious cooling trend at the end. Leland, I don't know numpy well - can you explain the averaging algorithm used? Too me, it looks as if you actually smooth over a 10 year period, but with a function that is strongly weighted towards the middle elements - which means, of course, that the duplication of the 2008 data has an even stronger influence than it should have. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:28, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
It looks like it is a five-year trailing average. Meaning the last point is the average from 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008. You could move the moving average line so the last point appears at 2006, but the shape of the line will still be the same. (talk) 04:06, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
I don't know what it looks like to you, but it is not a trailing average. That much is obvious both from the program (it uses a symmetrical Hamming smoothing function), and from the fact that it starts at the very first data point, too. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 09:22, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Stephan is correct, I wasn't handling endpoints correctly. Thanks for noticing! That's been remedied. This was, to my mind, part of the point of putting the code up. The other issue is what the smoothing does -- essentially it drops a gaussian weighting over a usual moving average, hence the wider window size than the average. To avoid fuss I've simply labelled it "Smoothed" rather than as being a specific averaging (and on a whim I switched to a blackman kernel, and notched up the window size since I'm not aiming at approximating a five year average any more). -- Leland McInnes (talk) 19:12, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
This is total BS. You guys monkeyed with the graph to erase the cooling trend. Can someone who's not part of the AGW gestapo look into this? (talk) 05:39, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
If you wish to argue, analyze the data yourself and present a solution instead of making accusations which will probably get you nowhere and certainly does not provide a deliverable with which to improve the article. At the very least, define "monkeyed". Awickert (talk) 07:39, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
The graph was supposed to be a five year bi-directional average (so the average value for 1995 would be the average of the temperatures for 1993-1997, inclusive). The data ends in 2008, so there is not enough information to calculate the average for 2007 (which is the average of 2005-2009 temperatures; 2009 is not yet known) and 2008 (2006-2010). The old formula incorrectly counted the values twice (e.g, 2008 = average (2006, 2007, 2008, 2007, 2006) instead of leaving them undefined. This error resulted in a relatively large (~1/4 degree C) drop at the end of the graph. This error was fixed, and now the anon is complaining the graph has been monkeyed with. Apparently the anon doesn't understand what it means to take an average. Raul654 (talk) 07:51, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, Raul.Awickert (talk) 09:21, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
The code is there, so you may muck with it all you like to see if you can create the dramatic cooling you wish to see. Just be sure to post the changes you make so we can determine what you did to get the result you seem to want. You can see perfectly well in the changelog (and I explained) exactly what I did. -- Leland McInnes (talk) 13:07, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Time to remove "the overwhelming majority" content...

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

As is the case with pretty much any published paper in any field, IPCC authors and reviewers can be assumed to support its content. There is no need for them to explicitly endorse it. Raul654 (talk) 07:15, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Based on this new information < ref: [[18]] > the content "the overwhelming majority of scientists working on climate change agree with the IPCC's main conclusions" should be replaced with "a few scientists working on climate change agree with the IPCC's main conclusions". < Mk > (talk) 03:04, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

But did the 2890 individuals all support the IPCC's principal findings? There's really no proof that any more than about 2% explicitly did so. - Yawn. So he's claiming that the thousands of people who helped write or review the IPCC disagree with it because they didn't explicitly endorse it. It can't be denied that other reviewers may have supported the notion of significant man-made warming but failed to explicitly state this. If that's the case them they only have themselves to blame for not being counted with the other "true believers". -1, Troll. Raul654 (talk) 04:03, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
"-1, Troll." - Please try to remain WP:CIV and attempt to adhere to WP:NPA. Thank you. --GoRight (talk) 02:11, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Policy guidelines do not apply to the Wikipedia nomenklatura. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Lunchworry (talkcontribs) 06:29, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
It's not a reliable source. (And for extraordinary claims like these you'd normally want to find an equally extraordinary source).
Apis (talk) 04:18, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
It is not up to those questinning a statement to prove there is reliable source against that statement, the burden of proof is on those who want to say something to prove there is a reliable source for that statement. Please go away and demonstrate that there is a good basis for this statement of "overwhelming consensus" or accept that it has to be removed. (talk) 14:58, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
There are plenty of sources for that statement and that has been discussed before, which I'm starting to suspect you already know, if not you should check the archive. If you want to make a major change based on some information you have found it would have to be from a source of quality at least comparable to those it contradict. You might want to read about the five pillars of wikipedia.
Apis (talk) 17:25, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
How many of them take account of the current year of cooling? You can't just reel out ancient documents from a time of actively increasing temperature and claim that people still hold the same view in this time of present cooling trend. Things change and in order to state a consensus, there not only has to be proof that a consensus existed in the first place but that those who were part of that consensus have not changed their minds. (talk) 00:40, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
I don't think anything special enough has happened or long time enough has passed to think there has been a great change in opinion about this. If what you say is required for something to be included in Wikipedia, Wikipedia would be empty. If you think the statement is incorrect, you need to show, using reliable sources, that there has been a change in how the scientific community look at global warming. If you don't agree you could ask for a second opinion.
Apis (talk) 13:36, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
As pointed out below, we have reliable statements by several of the worlds most respected scientific societies confirming the basic IPCC results right up to (and including) 2008. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:13, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
From the site: Home Page of John McLean Computer consultant and occasional travel photographer...yep, I'll have to agree that it's not a reliable source on climate science :).--Seba5618 (talk) 13:06, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
I think the statement "there's really no proof that more than 2% explicitly supported the IPCC findings" is extremely damning. How can you claim "overwhelming support", when there's not evidence. You could say: "the IPCC claim..." or "it is commonly believed", but within Wikipedia policy it is not possible to claim something unless it can be backed up by sound evidence, and that evidence is missing, so it should be promptly corrected! (talk) 14:55, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
"there's really no proof that more than 2% explicitly supported the IPCC findings" - their names appear on the IPCC report as authors or reviewers. As is the case with pretty much any published paper in any field, its authors and reviewers can be assumed to support its content. There is no need for them to explicitly endorse it. The author of this blog is simply trying to move the goal posts. That's not only wrong, it's not even subtly wrong. Raul654 (talk) 01:43, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Will someone please revise the "the overwhelming majority" content ! It’s obvious that the original support base no longer exists. No one is moving goal posts here – they were erected with a supposed large number of signatories which now totals less than 2% of that group - the goal posts have simply vanished. How can you say an out of date document equates to a certain level of support regardless if the majority no longer supports it ? There is no logic there... < Mk > (talk) 07:06, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
Since you have apparently ignored the above response, I'll repeat it here: the author of the blog post you point to is claiming that IPCC authors and reviewers need to explicitly endorse its findings, or else they can be assumed not to support its finding. This is patently wrong. I am marking this section as resolved. Raul654 (talk) 07:15, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.
I'm sorry, but who are you to shut this discussion down ? ..and why is "patently" wrong to suggest that when signers of a document no longer support it in the numbers suggested in this article that the content be changed to reflect that occurance ? < Mk > (talk) 07:29, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
Because your "suggestion" is a faulty argument. Show hard concrete evidence that the signee's aren't in support - or the discussion is futile. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 07:40, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
I did provide it above, you just agree with the facts supplied. < Mk > (talk) 07:47, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
No, you didn't. The blog you pointed at simply says "We'll assume the authors do not support it until they prove otherwise." which stands accepted academic practice on its head. Raul654 (talk) 07:56, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Cooling trend confirmed at -0.013/yr with 2008 Hadcrut3 out

Whilst it is hardly news, if anyone were to look at Hadcrut3 you will find that the Met Office figures confirm 2008 as the coldest year this century giving an average global temperature trend of -0.013/year. (talk) 14:50, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Over what time period? --GoRight (talk) 05:55, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
"Coldest year this century" is somewhat lacking in persuasive power when it is only one of eight years in a century. And since when do eight years make a trend in climatology? --TS 16:33, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
I may as well ask: "Since when did 50 years make a trend?" If you know anything about climatology you'll know that 50% of the natural climate change occurs within 10years, so whilst some of the climate change takes centuries even millennium, anything approaching 10 years is statistically valid. Moreover, if you take a longer period, you'll see that the trend itself is heading toward cooling. But the main point is that talking about "global warming" in the present tense is about as honest as talking about "economic growth" as if we were not in a recession! (talk) 16:48, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
If one does a proper linear regression, the trend over the last 8 years is still positive. Shocker, I know. -Atmoz (talk) 16:52, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
So tell me Atmoz, 1. Do you deny that the data shows the world has cooled this century. 2. what is the trend in the trend over the last 8 years? 3. Why is a recession two quarters of cooling, but global warming seems to be "any definition you damn well like so long as it is warming" - the point being that if global warming were a science, then it would have a more scientific definition for global cooling than economics which few call a science. (talk) 16:59, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
1. Yes. The Earth has not cooled this century. 2. No one cares. An 8 year trend is meaningless regarding climate, the trend of the trend (acceleration) is hopelessly meaningless. Comparing climatology with economics is like comparing apples with porn stars. I'm sure you can find some way to compare them... if you really want to. -Atmoz (talk) 17:16, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Gee, but has it cooled in the last decade (the standard duration of interest among climate scientists everywhere)? --GoRight (talk) 06:03, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
No, it hasn't cooled in the last decade either. The avg temp for the first half [1999:2003] was 0.381, and for the second half [2004:2008] was 0.413. And the standard duration isn't one decade. (using hadcrut3v) --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 17:32, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
You seem to have confused the current economic recession with global warming. Congratulations, that takes some ingenuity. --TS 17:13, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
The natural variability in the climate system is such that it takes a larger change over a longer period of time to leave the plausible natural variability. There is much less natural variability in the economic system, and change can happen in the economic system over much shorter time-scales. For example, the Little Ice Age and Medieval Warm Period were well within the range of natural climate variability, yet we can see these everywhere. And that's why it's taken so long to see global warming as a clear defensible trend, because although temperature has been increasing, until recently, temperature had not yet left the realm of natural variability. Awickert (talk) 17:36, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Just a question, what is the frequency component of this natural variability? I ask because as far as I can see global warming "science" is based on a very simple model of climate which assumes "normal" guassian distribution of noise. Anyone that knows about noise will recognise this to be a very bad model for the noise in the climate which clearly has dominant lower frequencies and is very far from the typical guassian noise. No don't answer, I know the answer already and given previous experience here I'd be wasting my time trying to explain even basic noise theory. (talk) 00:25, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Waste your time away then; it seems like your question is rhetorical. Awickert (talk) 06:19, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
It may be a waste of time trying to edit this article, but it is not a waste of my time highlighting the scientific facts showing how far from NPOV this article is! (talk) 14:28, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Then please don't insult everyone else with comments like "I'd be wasting my time to explain even basic noise theory", and actually start talking about how the general circulation models parameterize the values, and how the general uncertainty is calculated: because I don't know exactly how everything is done, but I'm pretty sure that it isn't a simple gaussian. Awickert (talk) 15:57, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
If climatologists don't even understand how to interpret noise in a signal how on earth did they get to the stage of developing models? We really are talking very basic science here: the difference between nomal gaussian noise and noise with a memory, and if you want to see "noise with a memory", just look at the graph on the front page of temperature and that is just what it looks like. (talk) 19:28, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
You ignored my question and responded with an unsubstantiated troll. Let me re-state. I am not a climate scientist. This is not about knowledge of statistics. I know that climate scientists know about statistics. What I do not know is how their models calculate these things. Your accusations that they do not know about statistics are unsubstantiated, from my personal experience they are false, and most importantly they are not useful to the continuation of the discussion. I would like to know how these models calculate error, but if you have no desire to do so, and would prefer to continue making insults without evidence, then this conversation is over. Awickert (talk) 19:44, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
I didn't say they didn't understand about statistics (or that isn't what I meant), I said they didn't understand about the various types of normal noise that one gets in various signals. This is really very fundamental. If you don't know the nature of the noise in your system, and then you try to analyse it on the assumption it is a very different kind of noise, you will get a very misleading result. Put another way, if you assume that long period noise in the signal has the same amplitude as short periods, and then you see a large long term variation larger than the short, you are bound to think this is due to some extraneous forcing. If on the other hand, you understand the nature of the noise in your system and recognise that long term noise fluctuations have a larger amplitude than short term (the obvious one being the glacial, inter-glacial where long term is clearly much larger than the year-year noise amplitude) then you don't waste your time trying to build complicated models bringing in extraneous variables like CO2 in some vane attempt to explain something which is pure and simple noise. (talk) 00:19, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
You have an insufficient grasp of the history of global warming research. Scientists did not invent CO2 forcing to explain the climate record, but predicted warming from increased CO2 long before the signal could be seen in the data - both for temperature and for CO2. What we observe now just confirms this prediction. And if you think the the glacial cycles are "noise" you are not remotely qualified to talk about statistics or noise.... --Stephan Schulz (talk) 00:31, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
89, it's cool that you have spotted all these faults in climate modelling that the climatologists have missed. Why don't you write to a climatology journal with your discoveries? If enough climatologists realise they're wrong, they'll respond and we can put their response into this article. --TS 00:33, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for explaining, 89. So what I'm getting is that you're saying that the long-term natural fluctuations (glacial-interglacial) are of a higher amplitude than the short-term (century/decadal) fluctuations. First, I don't see how that helps your argument, since if the short-term fluctuations are supposed to be smaller, and we're seeing a big short-term wha-boom upwards in temperature, then it should be seen as a significant departure from what would be expected.
Second, I would argue that CO2 is not an "extraneous variable". CO2 has been shown to absorb the wavelengths of radiation that come off of the Earth, giving it a mechanism for the Earth to retain heat. And as for greenhouse gases in general, it's pretty well-documented that they're important - with no greenhouse gases, Earth would have an average temperature of -18°C (from a radiation balance with the sun) so the fact that we have greenhouse gases is good. None and we'd be like Mars... but too many and we'd be like Venus... though either of these massive extremes is extremely unlikely.
Awickert (talk) 16:48, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
This is very sad. The global temperature is cooling as reported by the very same sources that were used to construct the global warming concept, yet the content of this article is still suggesting we are in warming as if no new data exists... When does a theory or concept become and ideology? ..I think its when facts countering the theory/concept are disregarded in lieu of protecting the originally theory. < Mk > (talk) 07:25, 22 January 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:24, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
I don't give a hoot about ideology, 63, and you don't address a single thing I say in your response. Show me your data. Otherwise, you're condemning one ideology and supporting another with no facts. Awickert (talk) 07:40, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
We are simply asking that the content of this article correctly reflect the current global cooling data. There is plenty of support for that position listed on this discussion page - why do you want me to repeat those references ? I'm only supporting prior comments to that effect and asking for the content to be edited appropriately. Is it not great news that this natural warming cycle has come to an end and we are starting to cool ? I’m happy for the planet – aren’t you ? Can’t we share that with the readers of this article ? < Mk > (talk) 07:56, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
I'd be happy if I believed it. The articles I've seen here on present-day cooling, however, don't stand up, in my opinion. I've commented a bunch recently here and on the global cooling article, about that. So it'd be better if there were a specific article to discuss, because at the moment, I see no evidence for global cooling that doesn't (a) selectively pick data, (b) draw trends from single-year time-scales, or (c) properly analyze the role of various external forcings (solar and orbital) on the climate system. Awickert (talk) 08:06, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
Its actually quite a bit more simple. Blog and news paper articles are not scientific publications or reconized scientific sources. Find publications in recognized scientific journals and then make a case. Otherwise the information is suspect, and likely just blather if it comes from a blog or news paper article. This entire thread is a waste of time...--Snowman frosty (talk) 08:11, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Scientists now predicting global cooling

According to Pravda, Russian scientists are now predicting global cooling [19], I know that Russian scientists won't be considered by anyone here as a reliable source, but ignoring that I'll state that as Wikipedia has a policy of NPOV the article has to include evidence from those who disagree. (talk) 16:58, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

You have cited an opinion piece written by one Russian called Gregory F. Fegel. --TS 17:11, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
As you well know, nothing that contradicts the dogma of global warming ever gets into this article, so there's no point me doing any research to prove the point, but I have seen this claim many times in the past few months a lot coming from Russian sources, so I presume there must be something behind it. I never know, there may be people with more time than me who might still be naive enough to believe that contrary views must be included because of the wikipedia policy on NPOV. (talk) 17:36, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Why don't you just accept that you have misrepresented an opinion piece by a Russian-American working in Oregon as a "prediction" by "Russian scientists"? On how we handle contrary views, see WP:WEIGHT. It really does matter how many qualified individuals hold a view. --TS 17:41, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
I think you'll find that subject that really is scientific is based on evidence, whilst those that don't claim a scientific basis usually go on weight of opinion. As for "qualified", I think you'll find that almost all those "qualified" to speak on the church of England (i.e. ordained) are of the opinion that god exists. But are you seriously saying that god exists because there is an overwhelming consensus amongst those "qualified" to talk about the church of England that she does exist? And furthermore, are you seriously trying to say that an article on "god" should only cite opinion from those who have a qualification from a recognised religiouis body to talk about that subject? As I said, someone may have more time to pursue this mind numbing discussion. (talk) 17:54, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Meanwhile there is this (PDF) joint statement by 11 national academies, including the Russian Academy of Science. --TS 17:47, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Come on that is way out of date. Even I believed in manmade global warming in mid 2005 - afterall there had only been four years with no net warming which could be explained as a pause. However, we now have the full data of no net warming in 2005, 2006, 2007 and the clear signs of cooling in 2008 and to be frank anyone suggesting that something signed in mid 2005 is still valid at the beginning of 2009 is trying to pull a fast one. A consensus is something that is current. It is something that takes account of current evidence, and the current evidence is very clearly different from that in 2005 and very very clearly contrary to the predictions of warming. (talk) 00:33, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Well, you might be interested in this statement from 2008 by the same National Academies, including the Russian one, reaffirming the point and calling for a quick transition to a low-carbon economy. Also from 2008, we have statements from the US Federal Climate Change Science Program, from the Royal Society of New Zealand, and the European Geosciences Union. Maybe they know that climate is determined over decades, not months...--Stephan Schulz (talk) 01:20, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
What I enjoy about the Pravda article is the cognitive dissonance between "the AGW theory is based on data that is drawn from a ridiculously narrow span of time" and "However, this warming trend [since the1970s] was interrupted when the winter of 2007/8 delivered the deepest snow cover to the Northern Hemisphere since 1966 and the coldest temperatures since 2001." Also, the secret photos of French space aliens on the page increase my trust in that site enormously.... --Stephan Schulz (talk) 17:51, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Stephen you have the makings of a scientist yet (talk) 17:56, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
The Pravda article talks about entering ice ages (a process that takes place over tens of thousands of years) as a catastrophe that could happen soon. Even then, their time-scales are off. Look at [20]. Just based on patterns, we have longer until the next glacial would arrive. I've said it before and I'll say it again: newspapers will sometimes say whatever they want to make a buck and write a story. And if you're talking about other Russian sources such as Dr. Oleg Sorokhtin, you can look at me trashing his science, not his ideology, right here: Talk:Global cooling#An idea.. (scroll down a bit). As far as contrary views needing to be upheld here, all that you have given us as a fact is that "there are people who believe that global warming is not occuring". That is the problem. Science is not about debate and opinions, it is not about views, and the opinions of scientists are worthless unless they are backed up by data. Science is only about being as correct as possible. And let me tell you, I would jump for joy if I found convincing evidence that global warming wasn't going to be an issue so I could get back to the good life of not thinking about climate. Awickert (talk) 18:08, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
"the AGW theory is based on data that is drawn from a ridiculously narrow span of time" - it is based on a ridiculously narrow span of time when 400,000 years of reoccurring cycles proves it’s just another natural cycle. Again, why pick that particular segment of trend line unless you were fearful of showing it in the context of the known historical cycles ??? Where is the common (and for that matter scientific) sense in this approach ? < Mk > (talk) 07:44, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
OK - thanks. So first, the natural cycles are due to orbital forcing associated with Milankovich cycles, which is not going on on the time-scales of around right now. Second, the rate of increase in temperature is much greater than we see in the paleoclimatological record, and correlates very well in terms of CO2. Even if nothing else is accepted, this correlation is worrysome. Also, if you look over the past 2000 years ([21]), what's going on now is pretty big. It is small still in terms of what goes on in the big ice ages, but those occur on 10,000+ - year frequencies (for the small ones) and 100,000-year frequencies (for the big ones). The amount of change seen in such a short period of time is therefore a big deal. So to sum up, we have none of the orbital forcing that caused the ice ages, but we do have the greenhouse gas emissions that we know can trap heat, and temperatures are going up at a fast pace for such a short time-scale. Awickert (talk) 08:00, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Sea ice back to 1979 level

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

New entry in FAQ.

According to this link Sea Ice Ends 2008 at Same Level as 1979. which means that the graphs on sea ice in the article are now very POV and need to be urgently changed. (talk) 01:09, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

First of all, with very few exceptions, blogs are not reliable sources. Second - please look at the graph shown in the blog. Here is a couple of questions for you: Can you explain why 1979 was picked? Whats the trend of the graph? Was 1979 or 2009 the largest anomaly? Do you know the meaning of cherry pick? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 01:26, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Kim, sorry if the news upsets you. Secondarily, whether or not the blog is itself a reliable source, it is going to get its raw data from a reliable source and the basic fact is that sea ice data for 2008 is now available and needs to be incorporated into the article. As for cherry picking: Cherry picking is e.g. ignoring the January 2008 global temperature data as being "anomolous" when calculating global temperature trend. Cherry picking is deciding that the century started in 2000, because using the official beginning of the century shows this century to have a cooling trend. Cherry picking is sending all the temperature sensors with a low reading for calibration and scraping their results, but not doing the same for those with a high reading. Cherry picking is deciding that the only people who are an "reliable source" are those who believe in manmade global warming. Cherry picking is deciding that any information contrary to manmade global warming can only be included if it has bucket loads of proof, and numerous editors willing to waste time and effort to get it in, whilst any information pro-manmade warming, MUST BE INCLUDED, unless there is bucket loads of proof and numerous editors willing to demonstrate its falsehood. (talk) 01:39, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
(EC) OK, Kim, per your suggestion I looked at the graph. I fail to see anything about 1979 that would appear to make it a cherry pick here. Could you please elaborate on what there is about the data around 1979 that should be considered particularly significant? As far as I can see it was picked simply because it is an even multiple of 10 years back in time which would be wholly irrelevant from the perspective of cherry picking. I also note that the existing graphs in the article start at 1979. Are you suggesting that those graphs also used cherry picked data?
It doesn't strike you as odd out to pick two points Jan 1, 1980 (end of 1979) and Jan 1, 2009 and try to draw a conclusion? And ignoring all the other 365*(2007-1979)=10220 points on the graph? What makes Jan 1 special? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 14:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
"It doesn't strike you as odd out to pick two points Jan 1, 1979 and Jan 1, 2009 and try to draw a conclusion?" - No, not at all. These are the points at the beginning and the end of the available dataset. The beginning was not chosen arbitrarily, it was based on the beginning of the available satellite data. That is hardly a cherry pick and it is also the starting point selected for the existing graphs. To try and make this something it is not is disingenuous IMHO.
Sorry - but the the first point chosen is not the start of the record. Why would two individual dates be interesting? If we are interested in sea-ice progression, then it would be average, sea-ice minimum/maximum and the trend - not what the extent is on a particular day. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 22:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
"Sorry - but the the first point chosen is not the start of the record." - Upon further review and additional discussion I stand corrected on this point. Given that the date selected was, in fact, in the middle of the dataset one can certainly interpret it as a cherry pick as you say. Still, it is not very much of a cherry pick as cherry picks go.
Cherry pick usually refers to selecting a particularly advantageous outlier data point for the purpose of skewing the results in one's favor (e.g. picking 1998 as the starting point in the global temperature record). This selection hardly fits that description. Indeed, the point being made relies on that point NOT being particularly anomalous. As you yourself note, there are many other such data points in that dataset that could have been used equally well and to the same effect.
This point appears to have been selected simply because it is the earliest such example within the data set being considered. In that sense it can be viewed as a cherry pick, but that sense is wholly irrelevant to the point being made, IMHO. Given the obvious seasonal variation that occurs (see the plot that occurs at the top of the graph) if one wishes to compare the extent of the global sea ice area observed in one year to that of another year one obviously has to do so at the same time each year. Comparing January 1, 1980 to say May 1, 1980 or April 1, 1982 would clearly be meaningless because of the seasonal variations.
But comparing January 1, 1980 to January 1 of any other year or of all other years is meaningful. The same would be true for May 15 of each year or June 22 of each year, or any other date. As long as you are using the same date in each year you are making a meaningful comparison from a statistical point of view.
The decline in sea ice that you observe in the graph arguably begins either at the end of 2001 or 2004. This is evident even using the methodology of taking an annual sample of the sea ice extent present at the end of each calendar year. The argument being made here is that the "normal" amount of sea ice on January 1 each year is roughly the same as the mean in the graph. This held basically true from 1979 through 2004 (or arguably 2001). After that the January 1 sea ice extents clearly started to drop off, however at the end of 2007 they came back to "normal", and now also at the end of 2008.
I believe that this observation is noteworthy but unfortunately this source will not be considered WP:RS for inclusion here under the prevailing agreement amongst the regular contributors. --GoRight (talk) 13:56, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Of course its advantageous to the blog-writers POV - it allows him to pretend to readers that there has been no changes in sea-ice level. Completely ignoring of course that its only 2 days, and that the trend is rather clearly a falling sea-ice extent. And (as below) it is not notable. (btw. it was falling even before 2004 (also clearly visible) - it just accelerated after that point) --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 14:34, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
This same argument could be applied to anything. This is true even of the existing graphs. The data selected are advantageous to the author because they support the author's POV.
And the argument is not simply over 2 specific days. The argument is whether the year end levels of sea ice in 2008 continue to demonstrate a decline relative to the norms preceding the most recent decline. They do not as you have already acknowledged (i.e. you don't dispute the simple fact that sea ice levels at the end of 2008 were comparable to those at the end of 1979 which is itself representative of the observed levels throughout the dataset preceding 2001 and/or 2004). It is simply a fact that at the end of 2008 the global sea ice levels as measured by surface area via satellite data have returned to "normal" relative to the entire available data record preceding 2004 (and arguably 2001).
The specific of a single day compared to another single day in the record, has no scientific relevance. The graph shown on the front on the other hand has scientific relevance. Do you understand the difference between these? It doesn't matter how much you argue about it - it won't make a comparison between days interesting. Not even a trend line of all Jan 1'st over the record is specifically interesting. Since Jan 1 is a completely arbitrary point, with no relevance to sea-ice growth in general. Now if you had been talking about the average, sea-ice min, sea-ice max or concentration - then it has scientific relevance. In other words: its a fact, but a completely uninteresting fact. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 17:25, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
"btw. it was falling even before 2004 (also clearly visible) - it just accelerated after that point" - I guess you missed the part where I said "This held basically true from 1979 through 2004 (or arguably 2001)". As much as you'd like 2003 to be erased from the graph, the truth is that the global sea ice levels at the end of both 2002 and 2003 were also at near "normal" levels. The graph speaks for itself on this point. And as to your use of the word "accelerate" in this context, there is clearly no evidence of acceleration of decline in that graph. The decline looks completely linear to me. Luckily things seems to have stabilized and returned to "normal". --GoRight (talk) 16:59, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Are you being deliberately obtuse here? Why are you talking about a single date once more? Try fitting a trendline to annual averages instead. Or you can simply observe how much area there is below the normal line vs. above the normal line. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 17:25, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
"And ignoring all the other 365*(2007-1979)=10220 points on the graph?" - Who's ignoring anything? All of those points are appropriately included in the graph, the one you suggest we review. I considered each and every one of them and observed that through all of the variations that have occurred since January, 1979 we have basically ended up right back where we were back then. Are you asserting that the data is inaccurate on this point with respect to the actual observed global sea ice levels?
"What makes Jan 1 special?" - Nothing other than that is apparently the starting date for the data set. Given the obvious seasonal variations evident within the graph is it not appropriate to compare the same dates between years? --GoRight (talk) 18:28, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
If the day isn't special - then why was it chosen? except of course as a cherry-pick. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 22:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
See discussion above. There is nothing special about January 1 other than it is a convenient date on the calendar for obvious reasons. --GoRight (talk) 13:56, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
More to the direct point, however, do you dispute the claim that sea ice levels are (essentially) the same as they were in 1979 based on the data in the graph? I agree that this blog, in and of itself, won't be considered a WP:RS by the editors here, but as was pointed out it is generated from reliable data so it should not be a problem to reproduce a suitable graph directly from the data as has apparently been done for the other graphs on this page (see discussion above related to HADCrut3).
Whats wrong with the graph in the article? Does it pick random spots as well? Is there a point in this response? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 14:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
"Whats wrong with the graph in the article?" - Nothing as far as I can tell, other than it may not include all of the available data.
Why are you commenting then? "may" is not very progressive is it? Does it or doesn't it provide the information needed? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 22:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
OK, I'll be more definitive. The graphs do not reflect the latest available data. --GoRight (talk) 13:56, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Why don't you update them then? The data is here and here - since nothing much really has changed since October, i'm wondering why you are arguing here? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 17:32, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
"Does it pick random spots as well?" - No, but neither does the one in the article you are complaining about. There is nothing random about selecting the start of the available Satellite data as the starting point, is there? And if picking that point is is de facto evidence that the choice was random, then I guess we would have to say that the existing graphs in the article have likewise picked random points then, correct? At least if we intend to be WP:NPOV about it.
Since it doesn't pick the start of the record, and we apparently agree that the extent on a particular day isn't interesting - whats the NPOV problem then? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 22:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
I believe that this is addressed by the commentary above. --GoRight (talk) 13:56, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
"Is there a point in this response?" - I don't know, perhaps you should address that question to the author. But even though that response wants to weasel around with the facts by suddenly being concerned with hemispheric trends rather than global ones (cherry picking?), it does basically confirm that the assertion made in the Daily Tech article regarding the levels of global sea ice was accurate:
"Observed global sea ice area, defined here as a sum of N. Hemisphere and S. Hemisphere sea ice areas, is near or slightly lower than those observed in late 1979, as noted in the Daily Tech article."
Which appears to be something that you are disputing? BTW, is that source considered WP:RS for inclusion in this article?  :) --GoRight (talk) 18:28, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
No, please read my comments again. Have i disputed this anywhere? (hint: No). Yes, the reference is an RS. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 22:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Well, OK, at least we are agreed on the validity of the simple facts. Given that we have a WP:RS source for this point would you object to having a brief summarization of the issue in some appropriate place (if not this article then perhaps one that would be more appropriate)? --GoRight (talk) 13:56, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
No, i would definitively disagree. See: WP:UNDUE. Additionally it has no relevance anywhere (except possibly in global warming denial) - as it is a response to a blog-posting making a faulty argumentation based upon a cherry-pick. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 14:30, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
 :) Gee, what a surprise. I assume that you will agree that this WP:RS found the topic notable enough that they bothered to respond, no? And isn't a prominent reaction by an obviously notable source notable? To quote from the source itself:
"We have received many requests for confirmation and clarification on this article from media outlets and interested individuals regarding the current state of the cryosphere as it relates to climate change and/or global warming."
Isn't something that generates "many requests" the very definition of notable? --GoRight (talk) 16:28, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
It is definitively notable to the laboratory - they got bogged down with requests. Is it notable to others? No. Just as the blog posting wasn't notable, and a non-WP:RS. The hint to take here is: Just because something is written in a reliable source, doesn't make it significant enough to write about it. That is exactly what undue weight is about. Outside of a rather limited (and apparently gullible) audience of the blog, its non-notable, it tells us nothing about science, nothing about sea-ice levels of interest .... all in all a waste of everyones time. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 16:36, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
As for seeing trends, let us consider the most recent years 2006 to present, what would you consider the trend to be there? Would you prefer a different starting point? What would that be? --GoRight (talk) 02:04, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Why would i pick 2006? Are we trying to cherry pick again? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 14:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
"Are we trying to cherry pick again?" - Certainly not. That's why I asked you what your preferred starting date would be. As you point out the starting point selected is quite arbitrary and the selection thereof can dramatically affect the results in terms of what the "trend" is assessed to be. So, what point do you prefer and why? --GoRight (talk) 18:28, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Can you be explicit here? Why would anyone here choose a specific starting point? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 22:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
I think I have addressed this above. The fact that some starting point must be chosen seems obvious. The fact that one must choose a specific starting point from amongst a set of arbitrary alternatives also seems obvious. For the sake of the discussion at hand, there is nothing particularly special or advantageous to using one date over another, so selecting the beginning/end of a calendar year as a reference point seems uncontroversial ... or at least it should be.
Are you of the opinion that selecting January 1, 1980 (as opposed to January 1 of the majority of other years within the dataset) is somehow particularly advantageous to the observation being made? In other words, is it your opinion that the stated observation would hold true for January 1, 1980 whereas it would not for any of the other years? Indeed, not for the majority of the other years outside the period of decline? --GoRight (talk) 13:56, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
There's a kind of desperation about the sea ice claims made by global warming skeptics. The summer ice has receded frighteningly, which has a demonstrable impact on at least one species of large mammal. The fact that a thin ice layer grows back in winter is good, because it helps to reflect sunlight back and reduces global warming, but when it is presented in the way it is--as if it negated the general thinning of the ice and the loss of summer ice cover--that is wrong, and as I said, rather desperate. --TS 14:12, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
To reiterate the point: Winter sea ice extent changes much more slowly than summer sea ice extent, because in winter it (still) is cold enough that new (if thin) ice forms quickly over much of the arctic. January 1st is in the middle of Northern winter (although just a bit shy of maximum extent), so this choice date minimizes the effect. A better comparison would be by comparing averages over a full year, or even better, fitting a linear trend to the full 30 year record. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:58, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Having looked at the source more closely I see that the graph included is annotated with the following: "Thirty years of sea ice data. The record begins at 1979, the year satellite observations began (Source: Arctic Research Center, University of Illinois)". I think that this addresses the mystery of why they chose 1979. Do you still consider that to be a cherry pick? --GoRight (talk) 02:44, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Yes. See above. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 14:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
So do you then also argue that the selection of that particular starting point for the existing graphs in the article was also a cherry pick? See above. --GoRight (talk) 18:28, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
No. Read my comments again. --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 22:15, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Covered above. --GoRight (talk) 13:56, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Does your blog source mention ice thickness? Does it predict the extent of the summer ice for August, 2009? --TS 01:54, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Do the existing graphs on this article? --GoRight (talk) 02:04, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
What do you want to be done with the graphs on the article? Remember that we're writing an encyclopedia, not a weather site. --TS 02:20, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Nothing in particular. You were asking the other editor about the ice thickness like that was significant to his point, but the current graphs (which is what is being discussed, I thought) don't address ice thickness either, do they? So I am curious why you brought that up. --GoRight (talk) 02:34, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
NOAA has a longer record, though it doesn't go to the present day, see [22], so the two plots combined should show us the whole record. What this shows is that we're still in the range of natural variability with respect to 1979, but that there is a long-term trend of decrease in sea ice going back to circa the 50's or 60's. Awickert (talk) 02:51, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Ice is a trailing indicator. The Earth was cooling in 1950-75, yet the ice thinning. This is presumably a response to warming in the 1920s and 1930s -- and I don't that anyone's claiming that was caused by CO2. Kauffner (talk) 04:19, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
Huh - from the year-to-year points on the temperature graph on this article, it looks like temperature was actually staying constant to slightly rising during 50-75. Sea ice is related to sea surface temperatures, which I can't think would have a 50-year lag-time. I looked around. This article says it has a 2-year lag time: Northern Hemisphere sea ice variability: lag structure and its implications. I can't find other sources in a quick search. A good website for basic information on this, however, is the FAQ from the National Snow and Ice Data Center. Awickert (talk) 04:38, 20 January 2009 (UTC)

Cold hard facts explains all your confusion William M. Connolley (talk) 19:03, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

Put that one in the FAQ. Clear and understandable. --TS 19:12, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
Nice - thanks. Though when I wrote that I was aiming less towards confusion and more towards a soft rebuttal :). My above link to NOAA also shows decrease in sea ice cover from before 1979, lengthening the trend. Awickert (talk) 19:19, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
I've added it to the FAQ, per Tony's suggestion. Raul654 (talk) 19:22, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

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I'm not a PHD or anything of the sort but global warming is not fact or rather its cause has not been determined and as such the open line is debatable shouldn't it read something to the extent of global warming is the theory that... secondly where is the counter claim section? even the article on evolution mentions the concepts of creationism and it argument yet something that is based on much more debatable facts hardly mentions the other side of the argument. How can this be considered a fair representation of the arguments? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:37, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

The takeaway from the above discussion seems to be, "You can fiddle with start dates and end dates and come up with any trend you like." Which would suggest that there is no real trend. Kauffner (talk) 12:06, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
Umm, no. You have valid and invalid ways of determining a trend in noisy data. The invalid ones tend to allow for a larger range of outcomes... --Stephan Schulz (talk) 12:28, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Current Data

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See FAQ entry: "Image X needs updating"

Might not the article benefit by having some reference to current data on Global warming? I don't seem to see much in the article dated to observations since 2005 and most go back to research done at the end of the last millenium. Rktect (talk) 14:24, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

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2009 Updates Needed

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New FAQ entry: "Image X needs updating"

I've noticed that nearly all the evidence presented in charts and from panel rulings has upper limits of 2004 or 2005. I believe the charts need to be updated with the newest information, since it is hard to show a trend whilst in the middle of it. Besides, updated information may paint a clearer picture of the theory itself. If you can find more up-to-date information, then work it into this existing article. --Triadian (talk) 08:08, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

This keeps coming up. A new FAQ entry would be advisable. Raul654 (talk) 14:03, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
I took a stab at writing the new FAQ, although I think it could use some fine-tuning. -Atmoz (talk) 17:12, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
WP:OR and WP:NOT#NEWS should cover it. In terms of climatology, four years is the blink of an eye. --TS 14:35, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
I might suggest that the mean temperatures 1994-2004 image is the source of the problem. People see that particular figure and conclude the data is out of date and should be updated. I realize this figure is here to show that the last 20 or so years are significantly warmer than the previous (even if its a 10 year interval), and that a 1998-2008 interval would show no real difference if compared to the same time period as 1994-2004 (just by eye balling the temperature trend).... but I believe this is the source for all those update the data comments. --Snowman frosty (talk) 15:49, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

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(A) "Global warming" was not coined in soylet green. (B) There is no need for an etymology section. Raul654 (talk) 02:10, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

This article [23] says the first use of the phrase "global warming" was in a 1973 movie called Soylent Green. Is that true? The article also discusses whether to call the phenomenon. ChildofMidnight (talk) 16:14, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

No. I don't know what is the first use, but on December 21, 1969 the NYTimes wrote: "Physical scientist J O Fletcher warns man has only a few decades to solve problem of global warming caused by pollution", so clearly the phrase "global warming" is at least that old. Dragons flight (talk) 16:33, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

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Improving Signal to Noise Ratio

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We need to resist the urge to all re-say the obvious and just point people to previous discussions.

Folks, its all jolly good fun pointing out the errors in peoples ways, but it does fill up the talk page. I think we need to resist the urge to all re-say the obvious and just point people to previous discussions. That way discussion aimed at actually improving the article won't get lost William M. Connolley (talk) 08:38, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

Name one example of "discussion aimed at actually improving the article", please ;-). --Stephan Schulz (talk) 08:51, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
Erm, theres ... no ... then .... no .... errr? --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 11:51, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
Improving the article requires there be paragraphs that say there are some number of non-specialist scientists who think that the science is not being properly interpreted (human-induced global warming is not proven?) and climate specialists don't suffer from alarmism. Until that happens, people like me will be tempted to suppose this article suffers from bias though for no understandable reason. MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 11:47, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Its already there - read the lead: "While individual scientists have voiced disagreement with these findings,[10] the overwhelming majority of scientists working on climate change agree with the IPCC's main conclusions.[11][12]" --Kim D. Petersen (talk) 11:55, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
I think I can see the problem - it's this phrase in the lead here: "While individual scientists have voiced disagreement with these findings,[10] the overwhelming majority of scientists working on climate change agree with the IPCC's main conclusions.[11][12]".
So the word individual has been used to stigmatise quite large numbers of scientifically minded people and make it seem as if their views are marginal, while the article is written on the basis that scientists working on the problem all agree there really is a problem and it's right to be alarmist.
The trolling I can see is a small number (is it three?) of long-standing editors determined to make this article biased. I just looked at what people were saying in the last month (it's hidden away[24]). It's obvious that there are lots of scientific people (1000s?) who dispute (and some who think they can disprove) the alarmism, and lots of potential editors who would like to properly balance this article. Global Warming may be real, but a close look at what's going on here makes it look like a scam. I'm not the only person who thinks so, far from it. MalcolmMcDonald (talk) 17:09, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
What is your definition of "scientific people"? You might want to take a look at scientific opinion on climate change to get an idea of how well-supported the mainstream (IPCC) position is. "Individual" is not stigmatizing - I'm an individual, and proud of it - but entirely correct. And your use of the term alarmism is a bit troubling. The mainstream position is not particularly alarmist. See the FAQ. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 17:49, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Stephan – I’m sorry, thousands of scientists and tens of thousands of related professionals does not correlate with “individual”. Be it the current large number of scientists that have recently come out against the AGW theory (as discussed here and data provided many times) or the large number of likeminded professionals as referenced in the Oregon Petition, “individual is a miss characterization. < Mk > (talk) 16:54, 25 January 2009 (UTC)
The main problem with the debates in the now-archived portion, which I tried to iterate ad nauseum, is that the majority of those disputing global warming entered the talk page debate with either (a) dubious sources, (b) a lack of understanding of climate science, (c) a deep belief that global warming is not an issue, (d) a lack of politeness (which likely alienated some of those who opposed their views from trying to objectively work with them), or some combination thereof. The best way to go about things would be for those with disputes to put them on the table with links to good scientific sources, and for a respectful discussion to occur in which changes may occur to the article. In that way, an adequate discussion can be built, and whatever the result, there is a general benefit of knowledge that can most likely be built into the encyclopedia. It is a slower way of going about things, but I think that especially on a topic like global warming, where opinions are strongly held, forcing debates to be about some concrete piece of scientific evidence would be both useful and important. Awickert (talk) 19:09, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
"Let me look at that map of the Near East again..." ;-) --Stephan Schulz (talk) 21:07, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Hey! No crushing my dreams! :) Awickert (talk) 22:05, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

Quick question. Given that "troll" is generally recognized as being a term of derision with the intent to insult the one or ones being referenced here (who are by definition wikipedia editors), does this section violate WP:NPA, WP:CIV, WP:AGF, possibly WP:SOAP, and/or any number of other related policies? --GoRight (talk) 23:50, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

No. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 23:54, 23 January 2009 (UTC)
Could you please help me to understand why? I mean this seems to be a clear case of a WP:NPA violation against some subset of the contributors here. Why do you think it is not? And the entire need for such a section seems questionable if one adheres to WP:AGF. Why do you believe these editors are acting in anything other than good faith (which is pretty much implied by the use of the term "troll")? I think some explanation here would benefit those involved and perhaps improve the situation overall, which I assume is the ultimate goal here, correct? --GoRight (talk) 00:07, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
It's WP:NPA. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 00:25, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
True, but if people feel offended by the title, it would be easy to re-name it to something that's more polite and still states that this is basically a "re-boot from generally unproductive discussions" Awickert (talk) 00:36, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
Yes, refer to improving the signal-to-noise ratio if you like. The purpose is to clear rubbish from the page and make room for discussion of the article. --TS 00:41, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
(@Stephan) See, now this is the type of response that makes it all so confusing for people. You have chosen to focus on the "P" part of that, which would seem fine with me but for some reason when I used the term "AGW scientologists" I was told by some prominent contributors to this very page that THAT was a WP:NPA violation even though there was no specific "P" there either. Indeed, this point was recently brought up in an WP:AN discussion started by Raul. Can you please reconcile these two positions for me, if you can? I am sure that other editors on this page would be interested in the response as well in the interests of avoiding WP:NPA violations all around. --GoRight (talk) 01:55, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
Ironically, this is turning into voidness. ¿What does scientologists, trolls and the "P" part has anything to do with improving the article?. --Seba5618 (talk) 03:13, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
True that. Renamed - thanks to TS for the name idea. Discussion over, I hope. Awickert (talk) 06:42, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

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The term "deniers" needs to be debated

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This is not the correct place to discuss global warming in general, or the meaning of the word "denier", which does not appear in the article.

The term “denier” is often used in discussion of this article as well as related material in WP. In the current environment I have a question as to how one should interpret the use of this term ? Does denier refer to:

1.) those persons denying global warming is occurring ?, or…

2.) those persons denying global cooling is occurring ?, or…

2.) those persons who deny that the cycle we are experiencing is a recurring natural cycle (such as defined by Milanovich), or…

3.) those persons who do not deny global warming, but deny the AGW (man-made or induced global cooling) theory ? < Mk > (talk) 16:41, 25 January 2009 (UTC)

See Denialism for a description of the term and its application. The words "deny", "denier" and "denialism" are not used in the current revision of the body of this article, though some of the references use the terms, and there is a section hatnote reference to another Wikipedia article called Climate change denial in which denialism in the context of global warming is discussed. See WP:NOTFORUM for an explanation of why this isn't an appropriate place to get into a discussion not directly related to the content of this article. --TS 17:00, 25 January 2009 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Global warming images

Why not an image with both land only and ocean only temperature?

Global Warming vs Global Warming theory

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Covered in the FAQ Raul654 (talk) 14:57, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

This seriously needs to be changed back to Global Warming Theory. Just stating it as fact is unscientific and is further supporting the poor journalism and research that revolves around this issue.--Baina90 (talk) 13:52, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

What?^ --Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:59, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

^Can you be a bit more specific? Changed "back"? The warming is a fact, the explanation is a "scientific theory". This is a well-defined term that is quite different from the vernacular use of "theory" - one reason why "theory" is a word to avoid. --Stephan Schulz

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.


In the phrase such as the Ken Caldeira the word "the" should be removed. (talk) 17:24, 27 January 2009 (UTC)Carl D

Fixed. Thanks. -Atmoz (talk) 17:43, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

FAQ explanation irrelevant

I understand why my point was archived and not open to further discussion. However, the response which is given by the FAQ is simply irrelivant. It states that "the warming is a fact". This I don't dispute, but the Global Warming Theory concentrates on man-made CO2 as the cause for this warming; this is theory.

I realise that I may be coming across as a far-right extremist, I can assure you that I am not, infact I am far from that. The point which I am trying to make is that the title should concentrate on the reasons for the warming and NOT the warming itself.--Baina90 (talk) 23:24, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

Well, this article deals with the phenomenon itself and the different theories that try to explain it. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 23:33, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

"Global cooling" should be added to the See Also for historical context. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Thustrae (talkcontribs) 08:34, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

It's in the infobox at the end of the article, together with a lot of other and at least equally important links. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 08:43, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

I would agree with Baina90. This page deals exclusively with the scientific theory of anthropogenic warming. I would suggest that changing the name to 'Global warming (Anthropogenic)' and the first sentence to 'Global warming is the human induced increase...'. These two changes will contribute to the public understanding of what this article is about; while not diminishing the scientific status. --Gonardia (talk) 00:55, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

Technically, this page describes various aspects of global warming, including its definition, nature, extent, and probable causes and consequences. The latter are described in a theory very much still in development, but that it is anthropogenic is nearly universally agreed-upon, which is why the vast majority of the article describes it from that point of view. The article does present dissenting opinions, but it gives them proper weight. Eebster the Great (talk) 04:58, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

"Unduly Optimistic?"

The last sentence in the first paragraph of this article now states:

"However, there is significant evidence that the climate models currently in use are unduly optimistic, as they fail generally to include non-linear effects such as the clathrate gun, which may lead to runaway climate change."

I object to this statement residing there and certainly object to it being unsourced. Given the information preceding it, it is a pretty bold claim that needs strong, legitimate sources to back it up. If nobody adds sources, I definitely think it ought to be removed. Eebster the Great (talk) 02:38, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

It's true that present generation models don't include clathrate gun and the like, but the "unduly optimistic" wording is inappropriate. You can fix it yourself, if I don't do it first. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 02:40, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

True, but good luck getting it changed. They locked this article and the people that control it are unlikely to make any changes. This totaly defeats the point of an open source "free" encyclopedia.--Baina90 (talk) 02:42, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

Unless it supports the global warmers hysteria in which case a whole different set of rules apply (talk) 18:33, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
I pointed out that he was quite welcome to make the change himself, so your "locked" accusation is mystifying. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 03:00, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
The page has already been satisfactorily changed; thank you. Eebster the Great (talk) 03:12, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
It was entered yesterday at 7:35, 27 January 2009 by Andrewjlockley. ChyranandChloe (talk) 03:30, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for pointing out the need for citations. However, IMO this is a classic case where a 'fact' tag should have been used instead of an edit. I've now put a whole slew of citations in, and edited the text to make similar points to those which were stripped. Hopefully there will now be no arguing, but please feel free to put in more citations if you don't think 6 is enough.Andrewjlockley (talk) 19:28, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
An edited draft is not a reliable source. This article is about Global warming, not about the IPCC, so having a sentence about the process of creating IPCC reports and details about problems with the IPCC reports should absolutely not be in the lead section of the article about global warming. In the text of the article about global warming, yes. In the lead of the various IPCC articles, yes (I'm not sure which article, though). Personally, I don't think it makes sense to use large numbers of sources in the lead is not appropriate. Put one good source in the lead (for information that should be in the lead) and the detailed sources in the body of article. If you contribute to Wikipedia, you must be willing to have people edit your contributions or disagree on the talk page. - Enuja (talk) 20:46, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
Okay, I've removed some of the sources used that I did not think were reliable (we're pretty big sticklers for using reliable sources, by which we mean in part "no news articles or blogs" when editors put in things critical about climate change. We must have exactly the same reliable source standards no matter the "perspective" of the sources or how they are used. I don't think the press release is a reliable enough source, but I'm not editing it out myself because I want to get a consensus on this talk page before making any major changes to the lead section. The Calthrate gun hypothesis is mentioned in the next paragraph. I think that the structure without Andrewjlockey's recent contributions to the second paragraph of the lead is a much better structure. Paragraph 1: definition. Paragraph 2: actual temperature changes, scientific consensus on broad outline of views. Paragraph 3: remaining uncertainties (which are Andrewjlockey's recent contributions to the second paragraph). Paragraphs 4 & 5 Adaptation and mitigation. Let's keep the intro as straightforward, simple, readable, and broad as we can. The details should go into the text of the article and into the more detailed articles. - Enuja (talk) 21:33, 28 January 2009 (UTC)
I used the press-release as it's a lot more digestible than a raw paper. I don't agree that the IPCC process shouldn't be commented on here. The IPCC is seen as the most notable global standard for Global Warming projections, but its process means its conclusions are out of date by several years. It's absolutely essential' that the recently-identified risks of runaway climate change are mentioned in the lead of this article otherwise it will seriously misinform readers. I'll have a go at cleaning up the other issues you mentioned to make it compact and readable. BTW, multiple citations are already used in the lead, so I don't see why you singled out my edits for amendment.Andrewjlockley (talk) 23:54, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

Right, I've tidied it up. I think it's clean, compact, adequately referenced (for a lead) and it reflects the consensus without ignoring the worrying recent evidence. Hopefully people will agree this is basically OK for now - until the next batch of terrifying data comes out! Andrewjlockley (talk) 00:12, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

The problem with citing sources is this: although a press release is more readable, an article as controversial as Global warming should maintain the gold standard of having only peer-reviewed scientific publications as much as possible. If this gold standard is not upheld, every agency that issues press releases - or worse, ever news agency - becomes fair game, from the apocalyptic to the "global warming isn't anthropogenic" to "it isn't happening".
On another note, I deleted a sentence from the part of the lead edited by User:Andrewjlockley, as it basically re-stated the previous sentence.
Awickert (talk) 01:18, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

The current 6 paragraph lead is too long, and the 2nd paragraph is individually too long. Andrewjlockley, this article is in no way, shape, or form the "most important" article on Wikipedia. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia and should not be used as an forum for advocacy. I disagree that details about the IPCC report are important on this article. It is far too easy to conflate the actual concerns and science about global warming with a particular organization's periodically released review document, and talking more about the IPCC reports contributes to a conflation of the IPCC with the actual phenomena and science. The IPCC reports are useful review documents, and I think it makes sense to use them as major reliable sources for this article, but detailed discussions of the process of IPCC writing should go into the IPCC articles, not this article. Because this is a high-traffic featured article, I strongly suggest that we use this talk page, not the actual article page, to come up with consensus language for the lead section of this article. I'm going to revert the lead, and then start a new section below to work on the draft of the lead. I changed my mind. I invite anyone to work with me on a draft of lead section on my user sandbox. - Enuja (talk) 18:10, 29 January 2009 (UTC) edited 19:31, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

I'll help. And perhaps the box at the top of the talk page that states that potentially contentious edits should be discussed first should include any edit of the lead section. Awickert (talk) 20:17, 29 January 2009 (UTC)
I don't think I've ever 'used the article for advocacy' - I've just tried to make sure that glaring omissions in the lead were corrected. The point of a lead is to give an overview, and missing out things like adaptation and feedback effects do no-one any favours. Also, the lead should make clear the 'special status' of the IPCC as the overarching scientific body on the matter, and clearly indicate significant criticism of its work. You can't comprehensively cover the issue without doing so. I'll have a go at your sandbox thingy in a minute. Oh, and if anyone can point out a more important article on wikipedia, then I will happily eat my hat. And coat.Andrewjlockley (talk) 00:15, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
The problem is that the "glaring omissions" you are citing haven't reached consensus like the other materials there. Furthermore, it falls into the category of details rather than generalities. Even if the most dire predictions were used, the actual science behind those predictions should be described later on.
Oh, and "importance" is a difficult concept to define. If you mean "importance" in terms of the subject material, I would contend that the article on the universe would be more important. If you mean ontological or epistemological importance, well . . . the pages on ontology or epistemology are probably more important, as are most other articles in the philosophy portal. If you mean "importance" from a utilitarian, educational standpoint, people are likely to learn more from academically-related articles than from polarizing issues like global warming. If you mean "importance" from a personal safety standpoint, I would contend that the individual can do far more in improving their personal safety and health with articles such as obesity. If you mean from a global safety perspective, more specific pages on how to control and stop global warming are far more useful, as may weapons regarding atomic bombs and nuclear war be. Global warming is important, but it's all in the eye of the beholder. Eebster the Great (talk) 05:09, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

Editing lead

The lead section of this article has recently undergone significant changes [25], and I think it needs more discussion and more work. Since this article is high profile (so a bad idea to do lots of draft-style back and forth editing on the article page) and the lead section is so stuffed full of references and the like, (so, not so easy to work on directly here on the talk page) I think it makes sense to use a sandbox to work in. I've offered up my sandbox as a place to work. We've already gotten started, but I suggest that we use this talk page (improving the article is what it is for) to discuss the collaborative changes we're working out in my sandbox. So, everyone is encouraged to go there and edit, and to discuss here the whys and wherefores of particular changes when the edit summary field isn't enough. Handy link: Wikipedia:Lead section

So, to dig in: Andrewjlockley, why the fact tag on the simple, declarative lead sentence that defines global warming and summarizes the article?- Enuja (talk) 06:30, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

I'm not disputing it, I just think that declarative statements need citationAndrewjlockley (talk) 16:00, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I think it's OK without citation, so long as the info supporting it is covered in the rest of the lead. Awickert (talk) 18:53, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I think the lack of citation makes it clear that this is just a summary, just a definition. Essentially, all of the citations in this article back that statement up. Putting a single citation there would invite putting lots of citations there to fully explain the sentence. The fact that it is a declarative sentence is not, to me, convincing that it needs a citation. - Enuja (talk) 01:19, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

I've added the very basics of global climate determination to the front of the second paragraph, because I feel that the numbers up front lead readers to glaze over the entire paragraph, and I think that starting out with the very basics is helpful for the naive reader (who we should be targeting this article to, especially as it's the top level article). - Enuja (talk) 06:30, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

I think that the numerical data is best in the body not the leadAndrewjlockley (talk) 16:00, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I have to disagree with you on this as well. Global warming something in which people are interested in solid numbers, and as such, they should be in the lead, just like a researcher would put numbers for main results in an abstract. Awickert (talk) 18:53, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
The numbers have been there a very long time. I think it would take a strong argument to convince people to get rid of them entirely. I wouldn't mind if there were absent from the lead, but I'm pretty happy with simply putting them in the second sentence of the second paragraph. - Enuja (talk) 01:19, 31 January 2009 (UTC)
I like Enuja's rearrangement of material - it's more or less exactly how I thought it would make sense to me, when I looked at it.
I have a question about references: if there is a scientific article and a generally-accessible digest of it, should I list both reverences (1 for verifiability and 1 for accessibility)?
Awickert (talk) 07:01, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I would add a link to the digest from within the first reference, that way you only need one reference.
Apis (talk) 18:37, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
Brilliant! Thanks, Apis O-tang. Awickert (talk) 18:56, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
That's what I do but Enuja's doesn't like it and edits' it outAndrewjlockley (talk) 16:00, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
It's true, I don't like multiple citations in the lead, but I could be convinced that they made sense. What I was primarily objecting to was three references that were all the opinion of the same person! One guy, on a book tour, and it gets three separate references in the lead section? That's not okay. Books are sometimes reliable sources, sometimes not, and I don't know if the book in question is reliable or not. I do know we try to avoid news stories, much less book interview news, as references on this article. - Enuja (talk) 17:49, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
The lead section of this article has recently undergone significant changes which I've largely reverted [26] for reasons which I hope the edit comments make clear William M. Connolley (talk) 16:23, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
William M. Connolley I thought we'd agreed that we were going to use the sandbox. I'm going to patially revert them pending agreement on the sandbox version.Andrewjlockley (talk) 17:16, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
Excuse me, Andrewjlockley. You've just told a long-time editor and defender of this page[citation needed] that he acted in bad faith. [NOTE: Andrewjlockley removed this section while I was replying.] Do you think it could be possible that he just didn't look at the talk page? Or that he wanted the version in the interim to be like the earlier version until your edits could be decided upon? You see, this started when you added information without discussion to a high-profile controversial article, and while I've been working with you assuming in good faith that you just didn't look at the talk page and were trying to make it better, what he did is no worse than what you did, and is common in an article where changes need to be discussed. Awickert (talk) 17:38, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
Please do not remove comments you make on the talk page, even if you regret making them. It makes the conversation disjointed and not make sense. See Talk_page_guidelines. Awickert (talk) 18:13, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
I now know TP etiquette better. Thx! However, I just edited it, I didn't remove it. I did so before anyone had replied - just a minute or so after a uploaded the badly-written version. Apologies for any offence caused. I don't fully agree with the comment about 'what he did is no worse than what you did' - as I didn't undo anyone's edit when it could have been edited or fact-tagged instead. I've been sticking to the sandbox like a house-trained puppy :-) There's a whole 'runaway climate change' article that can be edited if the concept is controversial.Andrewjlockley (talk) 21:14, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
Sounds good - just think before posting in the future - I guess I looked at the page at just the wrong time. The issue is that you added material to the lead section a controversial article without discussion on the talk page first, proper academic citations, or spotless grammar and writing, and with language that (at least, I felt) had some elements of non-neutral climate change activist rhetoric. Now, for example, if claims with the same quality of citations and slight POV were brought up in the lead that said "climate change=lie", it probably would have been undone on sight. So what I feel like is going on is that the lead was brought back to how it was before, until the new sandbox version can come out. Sorry if you feel offended - but the problem is that this is a hugely trafficked page, and the lead section is the most often-read, so it shouldn't be edited without significant thought. Awickert (talk) 21:40, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
Point taken, my work was probably not impeccable BUT the original article ignores geoengineering, runaway climate change and Arctic shrinkage that the IPCC didn't predict. As a whole, it was basically out of date. I think the sandbox article I read a few days ago was a lot better and I hope we can release it soon.Andrewjlockley (talk) 22:23, 30 January 2009 (UTC) (I meant lead not article when I said out of date)Andrewjlockley (talk) 22:36, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
OK - I'm sure everything will be better in the future. As the last note on this, though, your userpage talks about your personal interest in geoengineering and runaway climate change, so the insertion of a bunch on that into the lead section seemed POV-ish as well, especially considering the aforementioned issues and because runaway climate change is sort of a more extreme misfortune, and (I'm sure you can correct me on this) as far as I know, we're not sure if it will happen and how much it will run away to.
Take heart though - other than this article, what I've done on Wikipedia (mostly geology) is much simpler, and you sort of jumped into the Amazon's piranha swarm naked by editing a controversial lead right off the bat :). And on another note, I've just finished editing (to my like) the intro. Of course it's toned down, I'm used to writing dispassionate science, but hopefully you can bat it around back to me and we'll get something good.
Awickert (talk) 22:46, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

I've finished editing the lead to my ±happiness, other than the tags. Anyone want to take it up after me? Awickert (talk) 22:46, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

There appears to be some confusion here. I thought we'd agreed that we were going to use the sandbox - no. At least, if you're interpreting that as "no edits to the lede here until we agree on the new sandbox version". To be clear, I never agreed to such and wouldn't; I explicitly reject any such idea. And that's true even if by "the lede here" you mean the one I reverted to. Continuing: the original article ignores geoengineering, runaway climate change and Arctic shrinkage that the IPCC didn't predict. As a whole, it was basically out of date. The RAC page is in desperate need of work; I've made a few comments on the talk there, but it needs much much more. Depending on how you define it, its either not going to happen, or just be part of the normal process of cl ch. Throwing in a ref to the scarily-named page in the lede is unacceptable. geoengineering is a minority curiosity at the moment. It deserves a very brief mention, no more.Arctic shrinkage isn't a great page either, overenthusiastic. The idea that the IPCC is out of date is simply wrong; it's being pushed by some people; but then again, others push the idea that IPCC are a bunch of alarmists, and we don't take them seriously William M. Connolley (talk) 23:18, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

I agree that we should keep the lead section as-is (without recent additions by Andrewjlockey) until we come to a consensus here on the talk page. William M. Connolley's edits were entirely consistent with this approach. As far as the long-term usefulness of this [27] sentence: I've been playing around with the words, and I don't think that explicit scientific criticism of the IPCC belongs on this article: that belongs on the IPCC articles. I've kept "and many climate models omit possible positive feedbacks" in my recent edits, and I think that fits. But the rest of it is essentially off-topic in the lead of the top-level article about the IPCC. What specific arguments do you have to keep it, Andrewjlockey? Do you like the edits I've made, with just keeping the mention of positive feedbacks? We do have this whole article, and as many articles as we care to write, to put as much information as we can about run-away positive feedbacks. That doesn't mean the details should be in this lead. - Enuja (talk) 01:19, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

With all due respect to User:William M. Connolley, the science simply does not support your arguments. A detailed and well-referenced critique of your position is made in the Arctic shrinkage and Runaway_climate_change#Current_risk sections. I accept that the runaway climate change article needs work (the current risk section is actually well referenced and carefully tested). The Arctic shrinkage article has been scrutinised by field experts. The simple facts are:
  • The IPCC ignored significant feedbacks, especially methane (because their review process is very conservative)
  • Their conclusions are therefore failing to predict real-world changes
  • The evidence strongly suggests that geoengineering is the only way to prevent the total loss of Arctic sea ice, and the consequential outgassing of methane and resultant +ve feedback.
  • Whether you regard this outgassing as the start of a 'runaway' event or not, it's undeniably a positive feedback effect.

I'm not here to state anything that isn't supported by science, but the coverage of global warming on wikipedia is sadly well behind the current scientific evidence. We must not let peer-reviewed scientific evidence get stripped out of the article just because it doesn't conveniently fit with the notion that the IPCC got its sums right last time. The evidence of the Arctic alone clearly demonstrates that the IPCC was in some respects wrong. This is an article about climate science, not about how great the IPCC are. Right now I'm having a go at the new lead. I think it's a massive improvement and with a bit of tweaking I'm sure we can get broad consensus. I really hope no-one then tries to revert it back to a time when the science wasn't as gloomy as it clearly is today.Andrewjlockley (talk) 01:29, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

Doesn't saying that positive feedbacks could make things much worse cover all of this current scientific evidence? Yes, the IPCC is conservative. Why do we have to have details about this in the lead section of this article? Differences between observed and IPCC-predicted Arctic shrinkage, naming specific positive feedbacks, and putting uncertainly about local effects in two places are things that I do not think should go into the lead of this article. - Enuja (talk) 02:01, 31 January 2009 (UTC)
I've had a go at the sandbox. Doubtless it can be improved, but I think it's got a reasonably neutral POV whilst not ignoring the severe effects predicted or hypothesised. It also mentions the latest data on the Arctic, which is vital as it shows the IPCC was too optimistic. I agree that it would be a lot simpler if the IPCC and the latest science agreed with each other, but they just don't! We must reflect that.Andrewjlockley (talk) 02:07, 31 January 2009 (UTC)
I agree that we should use up-to-date peer-reviewed science instead of the IPCC ... when we mention that specific science. As one example, on Arctic_shrinkage, we should discuss the difference between IPCC models and measured arctic ice extent. However, using the more up-to-date science is not a relevant argument when we are talking about what is the correct level of detail to include in the lead section of this article. - Enuja (talk) 02:27, 31 January 2009 (UTC)
I'm somewhat skeptical of the suggested massive changes in response to global warming - mainstream climate scientists who I know don't expect anything like ocean anoxia or shutdown of the thermohaline, and the jury is still out on runaway change. It may have been suggested/speculated, but I just don't think that suggestions/speculations should be in the lead. Awickert (talk) 03:40, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

I created a talk page for the sandbox where I'm going to be reviewing changes and writing notes, because I feel like with 3 of us intensively editing it, toes are going to be stepped on and confusion will ensue (a big section of mine was removed, for example, and then some of the concepts partially added back) unless we keep clear, very specific communication about additions and deletions. I'm going to be using that page for very specific things, while the discussion here seems to be more general. Awickert (talk) 02:44, 31 January 2009 (UTC)