Despite the usual propagation of fear — weapons of mass destruction, widespread religious fanaticism, and the animal-based flu of the year, to name but a few—it’s become a “devil’s advocate” trend to deny global warming. But, don’t take any guff. Here are five forceful responses for the usual B.S.
The argument usually begins something along the lines of: Global warming is something the general public should not be worried about because, in fact, there is just as much evidence saying humans aren’t the cause at all. There’s nothing we can do. Haven’t you heard…
1. “It’s just a natural cycle of the earth; it’s happened before.”
Brilliant deduction. Indeed, the earth has warmed and cooled on its own. But, as for the recent trend, scientists have been unable to explain it as occurring naturally. Suggestions like the sun getting hotter, changes in the Earth’s absorption of heat, and internal climate systems giving off more heat to the atmosphere sound like good natural causes, but the problem is that there is no validation, despite lots of research attempting to acquire some. On the other hand, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, American Meteorological Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American Geophysical Union have created a united and research-based conclusion that our current warming situation has been and continues to be created by humans.
2. “Actually, the earth is cooling, not warming.”
Fact, you’re wrong. If you really knew the data, you would have surely noted that 1998 was — at the time — the hottest year on record, and after that, temperatures began to wane. However, you would have left out that 2005 and 2010 outdid 1998, as well as the more significant piece of data: 2000-2009 is the hottest decade ever. Just because 1998 was really hot and the next year wasn’t as hot doesn’t mean the world is cooler. We have to look at larger trends than year to year. The earth is not cooling. It’s getting hotter and doing so faster than we’ve ever seen.
3. “Then, why does Antarctica have more ice now than it used to?”
Probably because your information is as incomplete and skewed as a Fox News report. Sea ice and ice in Antarctica are different beasts with completely different implications. The increase in sea ice might just be the decrease in permanent ice sheet, which means large chunks of the continent are chipping off, creating obstacle courses for visiting ships. Actually, the expanding of Antarctica is the creation of a thin layer of ice on the surface of the sea rather than true, permanent growth. This could very well be caused by the melting of more significant ice structures temporarily lowering temperatures in the surrounding sea. Plus, this does not disprove global warming. The fact that the planet is heating up isn’t debatable.
4. “But, the sun is getting hotter, so …”
But, the sun isn’t getting hotter. In fact, it’s less active than it has been for over a century, yet the planet keeps heating up. The measurements of independent science say that the sun has actually been cooling since 1978 (this information comes from Skeptical Science), and regardless, the slight variation in the temperature of the sun can’t account for the major changes happening on Earth. So, the debate as to whether the sun is hotter or cooler is inconsequential with regards to global warming, which is brought on by the trapping of greenhouse gases and global effects, as opposed to regional weather changes, brought on by the sun’s inactivity.
5. “What about all the scientist/studies that say it isn’t humans causing it?”
An interesting point, and one completely founded in unsubstantiated propaganda. A recent infograph on DeSmogBlog demonstrated the amount of peer-reviewed material published about global warming (2,258 articles from over 9,000 authors), one article by only one author rejected man-made global warming. In fact, since 1991, 24 of 13,950 articles have come against human-produced global warming. Granted, these are articles being published and reviewed by professionals in the field, not just newscasters and rabble-rousers (yes, I went there), but I still think it illuminates a pretty funky flaw in those “other studies.”
If you need more convincing, let this latest YouTube! Superstar help you out or discredit such denial yet again. Now, perhaps you — dear global warming denier — should take a look at these articles and learn about what you shouldn’t and should be doing to help the situation.
Image source: NASA / Wikimedia Commons