Scientists: Cooler Trade Winds Spur Drop in Global Warming

Sunday, 09 Feb 2014 06:49 PM

By Greg Richter

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In a paper released Sunday, scientists say stronger winds from the Pacific Ocean may be causing a reversal in rising global temperatures, but skeptics are unconvinced, citing images of two-thirds of the continental United States currently covered in snow.

The article, published Sunday in the journal Nature, says that cooler-than-expected trade winds during the past two decades have stopped the annual rise in global temperatures. The earth's temperature has dropped 0.2 degrees Celsius (0.36 degrees Fahrenheit) since 2001.

The article's 10 authors say that greenhouse gasses have continued to increase during that time, but that much of the added warmth is being absorbed by deep ocean water. That forces cooler water to the surface, which then cools the trade winds, they say.

But the trend is not expected to continue, they write.

"This hiatus could persist for much of the present decade if the trade wind trends continue, however rapid warming is expected to resume once the anomalous wind trends abate," they say. Volcanoes and changes in the amount of solar radiation reaching the earth's atmosphere could also contribute to cooling, they add.

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reported that it has increased at 0.12 degrees Celsius per decade from 1951 to 2012, though the cooling trend cut the rate in half to 0.05 degrees from 1998 to present, according to Bloomberg.

Sunday's study builds on previous work reported in the journal Geophysical Research Letters in May, Bloomberg noted. That paper said that ocean waters below 2,300 feet have been absorbing more heat since 1999.

But Breitbart.com on Sunday displayed a satellite photo showing 67.4 percent of the continental United States covered in snow.

Breitbart contrasted that image with the words of Dr. David Viner of England's University of East Anglia, who predicted in a 2000 interview that within a few years snowfall would become "a very rare and exciting event.

"Children just aren’t going to know what snow is," Viner added.

Breitbart also quoted conservative write Mark Steyn, who last month said in The Spectator, "Big Climate is slowly being crushed by a hard, icy reality: if you’re heading off to university this year, there has been no global warming since before you were in kindergarten. That’s to say, the story of the early 21st century is that the climate declined to follow the climate 'models.'"

Breitbart's Dan Riehl had little sympathy for the climate-change apologists, saying, "there's little that's more unsightly than an adult so-called scientist crying test tubes full of tears over their broken model."

In the past month, Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., has said "fewer and fewer" members of the U.S. Senate believe in global warming.

"Now they’re trying to say this cold thing we’re going through now is just a bump in the climate," Inhofe said. "That isn’t true at all. It is a hoax."

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