Climate Change: A Reality Check

Mark Twain said, “A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.” When it comes to climate change, the truth is still putting on its shoes.

For climate truth, one need know the complete record of climate history, something that the media haven’t been good at reporting.

The primary culprit in misleading the public about climate change is Michael Mann. Selwyn Duke states, “Put simply, Mann is said to have used statistical sleight-of-hand to create a temperature graph that omitted the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age, thus making our time appear by far the warmest of the last thousand years.”

Dr. Bonner Cohen elaborates: “Mann was one of eight lead authors of the “Observed Climate Variability and Change” chapter in the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Third Scientific Assessment published in 2001. A graph based on Mann’s work was highlighted throughout the IPCC report. It received widespread publicity and was touted by climate alarmists as further evidence of manmade global warming. Indeed, Mann’s hockey stick took on a life of its own and was repeatedly cited by the IPCC and numerous governments as justifying collective action to combat climate change. The hockey stick has also been cited in innumerable peer-reviewed papers on climate change. Astounded by the sudden disappearance of the Medieval Warm Period — a time generally considered to have been warmer than the present — a growing chorus of critics demanded to see the underlying data on which the hockey-stick graph was based. Mann and his co-authors refused to release the data, even though their paper had been funded by U.S. taxpayers.”

Michael Mann’s hockey-stick graph is the lie that traveled half way around the world while the truth was putting on its shoes.

A 2003 press release by the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics states, “A review of more than 200 climate studies led by researchers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has determined that the 20th century is neither the warmest century nor the century with the most extreme weather of the past 1000 years. The review also confirmed that the Medieval Warm Period of 800 to 1300 A.D. and the Little Ice Age of 1300 to 1900 A.D. were worldwide phenomena not limited to the European and North American continents. While 20th century temperatures are much higher than in the Little Ice Age period, many parts of the world show the medieval warmth to be greater than that of the 20th century.”

From “An ikaite record of late Holocene climate at the Antarctic Peninsula”, published by Earth and Planetary Science Letters (Volumes 325–326, 1 April 2012, Pages 108–115):

This ikaite record qualitatively supports that both the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age extended to the Antarctic Peninsula.

From the 12/06/06 Senate testimony of climate scientist David Deming:

“In 1999, Michael Mann and his colleagues published a reconstruction of past temperature in which the MWP simply vanished. This unique estimate became known as the hockey stick, because of the shape of the temperature graph. Normally in science, when you have a novel result that appears to overturn previous work, you have to demonstrate why the earlier work was wrong. But the work of Mann and his colleagues was initially accepted uncritically, even though it contradicted the results of more than 100 previous studies. Other researchers have since reaffirmed that the Medieval Warm Period was both warm and global in its extent.

In short, Michael Mann erased real climate history with his hockey-stick graph, a graph that has been thoroughly debunked. Yet, his graph continues to influence the way that people think about climate change.

Climate scientist S. Fred Singer sets the record straight: “Climate Change (CC) has been ongoing for millions of years – long before humans existed on this planet. Obviously, the causes were all of natural origin, and not anthropogenic. There is no reason to believe that these natural causes have suddenly stopped; for example, volcanic eruptions, various types of solar influences, and (internal) atmosphere-ocean oscillations all continue today.”

When the real climate history of Earth is reviewed, it become apparent that Mother Nature has previously created all kinds of climate change without Mankind’s help, and Mother Nature is capable of doing it again. It is illogical to think that climate change shouldn’t happen and that it wouldn’t happen were it not for Mankind’s activities.

Yes, Mankind’s activities contribute to climate change, but just how much of a contribution is still being debated.

Yes, Mankind should curtail its activities that contribute to climate change and do so in a away that doesn’t destroy economies.

However, people shouldn’t be hoodwinked by a fake hockey stick. Alas, too many people have been.

Here is a correct visual depiction of climate history:

Instead of saying that climate change is occurring, the correct thing to say is that climate change is occurring again.

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  • Retired military

    ” one need know the complete record of climate history”
    And mankind only has about 0.00000000000001% of accurate data concerning that history.
    When the weatherman can ACCURATELY AND CONSITENTLY give me the exact temperature one week ahead of time based on something other than averages then I MAY start paying attention to what they say will happen in 20 years.

  • Gov’t needs climate change to appear to be a crisis so it can use it as a reason to raise taxes. Anyone thinking the Gov’t will solve climate change is either blind or unintelligent.

  • McG

    Instead of saying that climate change is occurring, the correct thing to say is that climate change is occurring again.

    Or rather, that climate change has been occurring continuously since the earth formed, including billions of years during which there was no life anywhere on the planet — just as it has been occurring continuously on Mars and other uninhabited planets and moons in the solar system.

    But that would be less pithy.

    • Our Sun is variable in its output, a fact long known to astronomers which seems to be beyond the ken of Michael Mann and algore…

      • McG

        They know about. They just haven’t figured out how the UN can regulate it by imposing confiscatory fines on the American taxpayer.
        (Wait for it…)

  • Computer models aren’t reality – and the worth of the model depends on how closely it can forecast the actual temperatures, not how far it diverges.

    It seems like the more wildly divergent the model is, the more acceptable it is to the AGW cultists.

    • The more dramatic the prediction, the greater the sense of crisis. This is all about generating a perceived crisis to justify their desired political outcome.

  • Desertphile

    A partial list of independently derived ‘hockey sticks,’ compiled by Jim Milks.

    Crowley 2000: Used both his own and Mann et al. (1999)’s hockey sticks to examine the cause of temperature changes over the past 1,000 years. Found that natural forcings could not explain twentieth century warming without the effect of greenhouse gases.

    Huang, et al. 2000: Reconstructed global average temperatures since AD 1500 using temperature data from 616 boreholes from around the globe.

    Bertrand et al. 2002: Reconstructed solar output, volcanic activity, land use changes, and greenhouse gas concentrations since AD 1000, then computed the expected temperature changes due to those forcings. Compared the computed temperature changes with two independent temperature reconstructions.

    Esper et al. 2002: Reconstructed Northern Hemisphere temperatures between AD 800 and AD 2000 using tree ring chronologies.

    Cronin et al. 2003: Reconstructed temperatures between 200 BC and AD 2000 around Chesapeake Bay, USA, using sediment core records.

    Pollack and Smerdon 2004: Reconstructed global average temperatures since AD 1500 using temperature data from 695 boreholes from around the globe.

    Esper et al. 2005: Compared and averaged five independent reconstructions of Northern Hemisphere temperatures from AD 1000 to AD 2000.

    Moberg et al. 2005: Combined tree ring proxies with glacial ice cores, stalagmite, and lake sediment proxies to reconstruct Northern Hemisphere temperatures from AD 1 to AD 2000.

    Oerlemans 2005: Reconstructed global temperatures from AD 1500 to AD 2000 using 169 glacial ice proxies from around the globe. Rutherford, et al. 2005: Compared two multi-proxy temperature reconstructions and tested the results of each reconstruction for sensitivity to type of statistics used, proxy characteristics, seasonal variation, and geographic location. Concluded that the reconstructions were robust to various sources of error.

    D’Arrigo et al. 2006: Reconstructed Northern Hemisphere temperatures between AD 700 and AD 2000 from multiple tree ring proxies using a new statistical technique called Regional Curve Standardization. Concluded that their new technique was superior to the older technique used by previous reconstructions.

    Osborn and Briffa 2006: Used 14 regional temperature reconstructions between AD 800 and AD 2000 to compare spatial extent of changes in Northern Hemisphere temperatures. Found that twentieth century warming was more widespread than any other temperature change of the past 1,200 years.

    Hegerl et al. 2007: Combined borehole temperatures and tree ring proxies to reconstruct Northern Hemisphere temperatures over the past 1,450 years. Introduced a new calibration technique between proxy temperatures and instrumental temperatures.

    Juckes et al. 2007: Combined multiple older reconstructions into a meta-analysis. Also used existing proxies to calculate a new Northern Hemisphere temperature reconstruction.

    Wahl and Ammann 2007: Used the tree ring proxies, glacial proxies, and borehole proxies used by Mann et al. (1998, 1999) to recalculate Northern Hemisphere temperatures since AD 800. Refuted the McIntyre and McKitrick criticisms and showed that those criticisms were based on flawed statistical techniques.

    Wilson, et al. 2007: Reconstructed Northern Hemisphere temperatures from AD 1750 to AD 2000 using tree ring proxies that did not show a divergence problem after AD 1960.

    Mann et al. 2008: Reconstructed global temperatures between AD 200 and AD 2000 using 1,209 independent proxies ranging from tree rings to boreholes to sediment cores to stalagmite cores to Greenland and Antarctic ice cores.

    Kaufman, et al. 2009: Used tree rings, lake sediment cores, and glacial ice cores to reconstruct Arctic temperatures between 1 BC and 2000 AD.

    von Storch et al. 2009: Tested three different temperature reconstruction techniques to show that the Composite plus Scaling method was better than the other two methods.

    Frank et al. 2010: A brief history of proxy temperature reconstructions, as well as analysis of the main questions remaining in temperature reconstructions.

    Kellerhals et al. 2010: Used ammonium concentration in a glacial ice core to reconstruct tropical South American temperatures over the past 1,600 years.

    Ljungqvist 2010: Reconstructed extra-tropical Northern Hemisphere temperatures from AD 1 to AD 2000 using historical records, sediment cores, tree rings, and stalagmites.

    Thibodeau et al. 2010: Reconstructed temperatures at the bottom of the Gulf of St. Lawrence since AD 1000 via sediment cores.

    Tingley and Huybers 2010a, 2010b: Used a Bayesian approach to reconstruct North American temperatures.

    Büntgen et al. 2011: Used tree ring proxies to reconstruct Central European temperatures between 500 BC and AD 2000.

    Kemp et al. 2011: Reconstructed sea levels off North Carolina, USA from 100 BC to AD 2000 using sediment cores. They also showed that sea levels changed with global temperature for at least the past millennium.

    Kinnard et al. 2011: Used multiple proxies to reconstruct late summer Arctic sea ice between AD 561 and AD 1995, using instrumental data to extend their record to AD 2000.

    Martin-Chivelet et al. 2011: Reconstructed temperatures in the Iberian Peninsula from 2000 BC to AD 2000 using stalagmites. Spielhagen et al. 2011: Reconstructed marine temperatures in the Fram Strait from 100 BC to AD 2000 using sediment cores.

    Esper et al. 2012: Used tree ring proxies to reconstruct Northern Scandinavian temperatures 100 BC to AD 2000. May have solved the post-AD 1960 tree ring divergence problem.

    Ljungqvist et al. 2012: Used a network of 120 tree ring proxies, ice core proxies, pollen records, sediment cores, and historical documents to reconstruct Northern Hemisphere temperatures between AD 800 and AD 2000, with emphasis on proxies recording the Medieval Warm Period.

    Melvin et al. 2012: Reanalyzed tree ring data for the Torneträsk region of northern Sweden.

    Abram et al. 2013: Reconstructed snow melt records and temperatures in the Antarctic Peninsula since AD 1000 using ice core records.

    Marcott, et al. 2013: Reconstructed global temperatures over the past 11,000 years using sediment cores. Data ended at AD 1940.

    PAGES 2k Consortium 2013: Used multiple proxies (tree rings, sediment cores, ice cores, stalagmites, pollen, etc) to reconstruct regional and global temperatures since AD 1.

    Rhodes et al. 2013: Used proxy and instrumental records to reconstruct global temperatures from AD 1753 to AD 2011.

    Y Zhang et al. 2014: “Millennial minimum temperature variations in the Qilian Mountains, China: evidence from tree rings,” Climate of the Past, 10, 1763–1778, 2014.

    Shi et al. 2015: “A multi-proxy reconstruction of spatial and temporal variations in Asian summer temperatures over the last millennium,” Climate Change, August 2015, Volume 131, Issue 4, pp 663-676. [PDF]

  • Climate change causes earthquakes. A Hollywood celebrity told me so. Maybe volcanoes, too, so we’d better do whatever the carbon credit crew tells us to do before it’s too late! /sarc

  • John Green

    “correct visual depiction of climate history”?
    Hahahahhaaaaaa! Department of mathematics in Singapore? Where’s your data, pea brain?

    There’s been a ton of research on the MWP. Cite the science. Yours is a blog post about nothing cogent.