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Monday, May 02, 2005Myths vs. Facts report on global warming
By climate scientists Dr. James Wang and Dr. Michael Oppenheimer discusses accepted science and debunks common myths.
MYTH: Global warming can't be happening, since winters have been getting colder.
FACT: Winters have been getting warmer. Measurements show that Earth's climate has warmed overall over the past century, in all seasons, and in most regions. The skeptics mislead the public when they bill the winter of 2003-2004 as record cold in the northeastern United States. That winter was only the 33rd coldest in the region since records began in 1896. Furthermore, a single spell of cold weather in one small region is no indication of cooling of the global climate, which refers to a long-term average over the entire planet.
MYTH: Satellite measurements of temperature over the past two decades show a much smaller warming in the atmosphere than is measured by thermometers at the surface. This contradicts global warming predictions based on climate models.
FACT: Recent research has corrected problems that led to underestimates of the warming trend in earlier analyses of satellite data. The new results show an atmospheric warming trend slightly larger than at the surface, exactly as models predict.
Read the Myths vs. Facts report.