Climate warming is natural, not human caused, says new study
International Journal of Climatology of the Royal Meteorological Society [DOI: 10.1002/joc.1651] (December 2007)
Climate scientists at the University of Rochester, the University of Alabama, and the University of Virginia report
that observed patterns of temperature changes ('fingerprints') over the last thirty years are not in accord with
what greenhouse models predict and can better be explained by natural factors, such as solar variability.
Therefore, climate change is 'unstoppable' and cannot be affected or modified by controlling the emission of
greenhouse gases, such as CO2, as is proposed in current legislation.
These results are in conflict with the conclusions of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate
Change (IPCC) and also with some recent research publications based on essentially the same data. However,
they are supported by the results of the US-sponsored Climate Change Science Program (CCSP).
The report is published in the December 2007 issue of the International Journal of Climatology of the Royal
Meteorological Society [DOI: 10.1002/joc.1651]. The authors are Prof. David H. Douglass (Univ. of Rochester),
Prof. John R. Christy (Univ. of Alabama), Benjamin D. Pearson (graduate student), and Prof. S. Fred Singer (Univ.
The fundamental question is whether the observed warming is natural or anthropogenic (human-caused). Lead
author David Douglass said: "The observed pattern of warming, comparing surface and atmospheric temperature
trends, does not show the characteristic fingerprint associated with greenhouse warming. The inescapable
conclusion is that the human contribution is not significant and that observed increases in carbon dioxide and
other greenhouse gases make only a negligible contribution to climate warming."
Co-author John Christy said: "Satellite data and independent balloon data agree that atmospheric warming trends
do not exceed those of the surface. Greenhouse models, on the other hand, demand that atmospheric trend
values be 2-3 times greater. We have good reason, therefore, to believe that current climate models greatly
overestimate the effects of greenhouse gases. Satellite observations suggest that GH models ignore negative
feedbacks, produced by clouds and by water vapor, that diminish the warming effects of carbon dioxide."
Co-author S. Fred Singer said: "The current warming trend is simply part of a natural cycle of climate warming and
cooling that has been seen in ice cores, deep-sea sediments, stalagmites, etc., and published in hundreds of
papers in peer-reviewed journals. The mechanism for producing such cyclical climate changes is still under
discussion; but they are most likely caused by variations in the solar wind and associated magnetic fields that
affect the flux of cosmic rays incident on the earth's atmosphere. In turn, such cosmic rays are believed to
influence cloudiness and thereby control the amount of sunlight reaching the earth's surface-and thus the
climate." Our research demonstrates that the ongoing rise of atmospheric CO2 has only a minor influence on
climate change. We must conclude, therefore, that attempts to control CO2 emissions are ineffective and
pointless. - but very costly."
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