Tags: Scientists | World | May | Not | Be | Warming | global

Scientists: World May Not Be Warming

Monday, 15 Feb 2010 10:12 AM

By Dan Weil

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New research from multiple scientists indicates the case for global warming isn’t as strong as some would have it.

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recently declared that “unequivocal” evidence shows human pollution is driving temperatures up.

It says the global temperature already has risen by 0.7 degree centigrade thanks to greenhouse gases. And it predicts another five to six degrees of extra heat by 2100, wreaking havoc on living things worldwide.

But many are now challenging that claim.

“The temperature records cannot be relied on as indicators of global change,” John Christy, professor of atmospheric science at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, a former lead author for the IPCC, told The Sunday Times of London.

He and others say weather stations that have been used to amass temperature data over the past 150 years may not be accurate. The stations have been affected by urbanization, changes in land use and in many instances moves to different locations.

Christy’s research examines the impact of those factors on three different regions: east Africa, California and Alabama.

“The story is the same for each one,” he said. “The popular data sets show a lot of warming but the apparent temperature rise was actually caused by local factors affecting the weather stations, such as land development.”

Ross McKitrick, professor of economics at the University of Guelph, Canada, agrees.

“We concluded, with overwhelming statistical significance, that the IPCC’s climate data are contaminated with surface effects from industrialization and data quality problems. These add up to a large warming bias,” he told The Sunday Times.

A new report by Joseph D’Aleo, a meteorologist who co-founded the Weather Channel, and veteran meteorologist Anthony Watts makes much the same points.

“Instrumental temperature data for the pre-satellite era (1850-1980) have been so widely, systemically and uni-directionally tampered with that it cannot be credibly asserted there has been any significant global warming in the 20th century,” they write.

“All terrestrial surface-temperature data bases exhibit very serious problems that render them useless for determining accurate long-term temperature trends.”

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