The world is definitely getting warmer, according to the U.S. National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration. For its annual "State of the Climate" report, NOAA for the first time gathered data on 37 climate indicators — such as air and sea temperatures, sea level, humidity, and snow cover — in one place, and found that, taken together, the measurements show an "unmistakable upward trend" in temperature. Three hundred scientists analyzed the information and concluded it's "undeniable" that the planet has warmed since 1980, with the last decade taking the record for hottest ever recorded. Does this finally end the debate on global warming? (Watch a report about the politics of global warming)
It's hard to argue with such rigorous proof: It's very difficult even for skeptics to argue with this "portrait of a warming planet," says Michael Lemonick at Time. NOAA had 300 independent scientists analyze such a wide collection of data that it would be "very difficult for one small group to skew the results, as some skeptics insist is happening." The report doesn't claim to know what caused it, or what will happen next, but gives the "exhaustive detail" that will be "crucial to nailing down these crucial questions."
"This just in: The earth is warming!"
This is just more NOAA alarmism: "There are lots of problems with this report," says John Ray at Greenie Watch. "First, none of these so-called indicators is globally accurate" on the temperature scale we should be using, "which is tenths of a degree." Second, we can agree the earth is warming — everyone knows that. But "we still do not have any reason to believe that humans have anything to do with it."
"'New evidence' of global warming is just a new cherrypick"
Everyone knows Earth's getting hotter, but we must accept it's our fault: There's little new in this report — even many in the "skeptical crowd" believe the world's getting hotter, says Tom Chivers at the Daily Telegraph. They just don't believe human beings are to blame, and that's where they're wrong. The IPCC — still the "greatest climate science authority in the world" — is 95 percent sure our emissions are responsible for it. Sorry skeptics, but global warming is real and "mankind (almost) definitely is causing it."
"The Met Office's climate change report: between denial and alarm lies reality."
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why all drugs should be legal. (Yes, even heroin.)
- How to trim $500 from your monthly spending
- Comic-Con 2014: Everything we learned about Avengers 2, Batman v. Superman, and more
- 7 ideas from ancient thinkers that will improve your modern life
- The big, gaping hole in the liberal policy arsenal
- Here's the schedule very successful people follow every day
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Face it, ladies: We can't all be beautiful
- A gay Mormon's complicated journey
- The weird obsession that's ruining the GOP
Subscribe to the Week