Friday, January 13, 2017

Sorry, Republican Congress Creatures: NOAA's NOT Fudging Climate Data

NOAA said in 2015 that there was no slow down in global
warming between 1998 and 2014 and used this chart to
illustrate this. A recent study by Berkeley scientists
confirmed NOAA's findings.
The now terribly named U.S. House Committee on Science, Space and Technology is ever so annoyed with NOAA climate scientists.

There were some questions about what some saw as a "hiatus" in global warming, largely between 2005 and 2012. 

Climate deniers were pinning their hopes on this supposed hiatus to say the climate change is over, and besides, whatever warming there was didn't happen because of us humans and our fossil fuel use.

Never mind that 2014 turned out to be the hottest year on record. That is until 2015, which beat that record. That is until 2016, which set a new, new record for hottest year.

Still, our climate deniers want ot hang on to any shred of "evidence" they can find to "prove" global warming is a hoax.

Which is what peeved the Republicans on the Science, Space and Technology Committee.

Back in June, 2015, NOAA scientists came up with some research that cast doubt on the warming "hiatus." NOAA researchers increased the estimated rate of global warming in the 15 years prior to 2014.

 NOAA scientists say that more comprehensive data from the oceans and the Arctic showed that warming continued without a break during the late 2000s and early 2010ns.

Deniers quickly pounced on NOAA, claiming the erasing of the "hiatus" was political, that NOAA was trying to convince people of warming that wasn't there.

Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, who chairs the committee said in 2015 "climate data has clearly showed no warming for the past two decades" and NOAA "altered the data to get results they needed to advance this administration's (Obama's) extreme climate change agenda."

The question is there: Did NOAA cook the books to help Obama advance his proposed climate change proposals?

Of course, NOAA's data was public, meaning it was easy to capture for peer review. Scientists LOVE reviewing other people's data. Will there be holes, or is the research solid? That attitude is just part of science,and a healthy part of science at that.

Scientists want to advance knowledge, and besides, debunking science from an outfit like NOAA can't hurt a career. (I'm being cynical here.)

So scientists at the University of Berkeley,  California went ot work, and reviewed climate data obtained separately from NOAA.

The Berkeley scientists  concluded --- wait for it --- that the NOAA research was accurate. "They weren't cooking the books," said Zeke Hausfather, the Berkeley study's lead author.

Yep, it turned out the Earth was cooking, but NOAA's books were not.

To determine whether NOAA knew what it was doing, and whether they were faking data, which critics had contended, the Berkeley researchers went through independent data with a fine-toothed comb .

The researchers examined satellite data, readings from floating buoys and information from devices that sink into the oceans to record temperatures, salinity and other factors.

The Berkeley analysts said their conclusions agreed almost perfectly with the NOAA data.

It turns out the "hiatus" in warming in the years surrounding 2010 was the false stuff: It turns out the data that suggested the hiatus was faulty.

Better data showed the warming continued apace.

Of course, then came 2014 through 2016, which turned out to be the warmest years on record.

Most scientists think 2017, on a global basis, will still be much warmer than normal, but a tad cooler than the record breaking levels of 2016.

I guess that will bring us to the next, familiar step from the climate deniers: If 2017 ends up being a bit chillier than toasty 2016, the deniers will tell us that climate change is over, or never happened.

I'm sure we'll hear that any minute. If we haven't already.

With Republicans in charge, and the House Committee on Space, Science and Technology will continue to claim that fighting global warming is futile, because it doesn't exist and would be expensive.

I guess facts are whatever you want to believe, in the U.S. Congress, and if reality intrudes, pretend it doesn't exist.


No comments:

Post a Comment