As of Wednesday, December 16, 2015
To the editor:
Despite Ms. Ricarte’s insinuation that global warming is just a massive conspiracy, significant evidence exists that global warming has continued from the peak of the last ice age through recent times.
A significant scientific consensus exists among climate researchers and other scientists that global warming is continuing and that the CO2 emissions increase this warming trend.
It has been known since 1856 that increasing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere traps heat that would otherwise dissipate. Climate change deniers will need to know what is happening with the heat that CO2 normally traps if the energy is not going toward planetary warming.
To have any scientific validity in the climate change debate, any climate change skeptic would need to counter the various phenomena that have been observed that are felt to be best explained by global warming.
These include: Plants emerging and flowering earlier, insects emerging earlier, plants and animals extending or changing their range to include areas further north or at higher elevations, sea level rise, Arctic ice cover reduction, shrinking of glaciers and other research findings.
Ms. Ricarte dredged up a smattering of half-truths and misleading information.
Yes, sea ice appears to be increased somewhat around Antarctica. However, that might be because of increased melting from the Antarctic ice pack that is diluting the ocean water in the area and changing the freezing point of the sea ice.
Ms. Ricarte claims NOAA has refused to turn over data regarding the so called “global warming hiatus.” According to news reports, NOAA has provided Congress with the scientific briefings, data and studies behind the Science article.
What NOAA would not provide was all the internal notes, emails and private correspondence concerning the study.
Stanford climate scientists also did a study confirming that the global warming hiatus appeared to be the result of previous poor ocean temperature data.
In the 1930s as hotter than recent years, Ms. Ricarte conflates the “Heat Wave Index” and measures of combined global land and ocean surface temperature.
They are not all the same thing — the U.S. heat wave measurement is for four days of maximum temperature whereas the average global temperatures are for the entire earth for the entire year with both maximum and minimum daily temperatures.
The global average temperatures for the 1930s were lower than those for the 1940s and for any year from 1970 to the present.