Hertzberg: Emissions of CO2 and global warming not linked
Ryan Summerlin December 11, 2012
Re: “Super Storms, here they come,”
by Tim Lydon, Writers on the Range, Dec. 7
Tim Lydon in his 12/7/12 article entitled “Super Storms, here they come” claims that Hurricane Sandy as well as last year’s giant storm near the Alaskan coast were “strikingly similar, and both point to a climate destabilized by fossil fuel emission.” He has cherry-picked two cases, but what does the totality of the data show? The data for Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) from 1972-2012 shown in www.energytribune.com/64549/hurricane-sandy (which includes Sandy in the 2012 data point) shows that the 2012 (ACE) was markedly lower than the average for that 40-year period. Here is prof. William Grey, of CSU, one of the world’s most distinguished meteorologists on the subject: “The longest recorded period of no major (category 3,4,5) hurricane landfalls in the U. S. has occurred during the last several years (2006-2012). We have also had 20 fewer major U.S. hurricane landfall events in the last 47 year period (1960-2012) than we had during the earlier 47 year (1919-1965) period. And this decrease occurred during the time of rising CO2 levels”. Where is the destabilization Lydon is talking about?
Lydon then goes on to regurgitate the rogues gallery of climate change “talking points”: “warming oceans and rising sea levels” as “observable phenomena driven by the atmospheric build up of greenhouse gases.” Again, what do the data actually show? In www.climate
4you.com October 2012 update, you will find that global sea surface temperatures like near-surface air temperatures have been essentially constant (or even decreased slightly) over the last 10 years. Lydon’s suggestion that the observed current sea level rise of about one-tenth of an inch in one year’s time can have any significant effect on a storm surge of 15-20 feet in a day’s time is clearly absurd.
The climate change echo chamber of environmental activists that Lydon and his fellow “Writers on the Range” are tuned in to is no less fact deficient than the right-wing, reactionary echo chamber of the Fox News network that we liberals detest. For some authenticity, integrity and a breath of fresh air, the reader is referred to the recent open letter to the Secretary General of the United Nations. It was signed by some 130 of the world’s most knowledgeable and distinguished scientists (including Prof Grey) and is available at www.tinyurl.com/bv8n2tl. That letter tells it like it is:
“The incidence and severity of extreme weather has not increased…..the hypothesis that our emissions of CO2 have caused or will cause dangerous global warming is not supported by the evidence.”