Dear Donald Trump: Winter Does Not Disprove Global Warming

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This post first appeared at Mother Jones.

Pedestrians cross 34th Street and 6th Avenue under falling snow in Herald Square, Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014, in New York. The storm is expected to bring snow, stiff winds and punishing cold into the Northeast. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Pedestrians cross 34th Street and 6th Avenue under falling snow in Herald Square, Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

An intense blizzard, appropriately named Hercules, has blanketed the Northeast. Antarctic ice locked in a Russian ship containing a team of scientists — en route, no less, to do climate research — and now a Chinese icebreaker sent to rescue them may be stuck too. Record low temperatures have been seen in parts of the US, and in Winnipeg, temperatures on December 31 were as cold as temperatures on… Mars.

So as is their seasonal wont, here come the climate skeptics. Exhibit A:


And Trump isn’t the only one. A similar reaction came from Congressman John Fleming, a Louisiana Republican:


And’s Erick Erickson also piled on, blending global warming dismissal with religion:


Meanwhile, the front page of the Drudge Report listed a variety of cold weather news items under the heading, “Global Warming Intensifies…”

Rush Limbaugh also weighed in, noting that the Green Bay Packers may face San Francisco in subzero temperatures at home this weekend:

LIMBAUGH: I would love to see Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and Hillary sitting outside on the 50 yard line of Green Bay the whole game, and then afterwards do a presentation for us all on global warming. Sit there the whole game outside.

And last but not least, Fox Business’Stuart Varney used the Antarctic ice story to claim that “we’re looking at global cooling, forget this global warming.”

All of this is all wrong in ways that have all been explained before. So just a few brief observations:

1. Statements about climate trends must be based on, er, trends. Not individual events or occurrences. Weather is not climate, and anecdotes are not statistics.

2. Global warming is actually expected to increase “heavy precipitation in winter storms,” and for the northern hemisphere, there is evidence that these storms are already more frequent and intense, according to the draft US National Climate Assessment.

3. Antarctica is a very cold place. But global warming is affecting it as predicted: Antarctica is losing ice overall, according to the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. However, sea ice is a different matter than land-based or glacial ice. Antarctic sea ice is increasing, and moreover, the reason for this may be climate change! (For more, read here.)

Finally, just one last thing. When it’s winter on Earth, it’s also summer on Earth… somewhere else. Thus, allow us to counter anecdotal evidence about cold weather with more anecdotal evidence: It’s blazing hot in Australia, with temperatures, in some regions, set to possibly soar above 120 degrees Fahrenheit in the coming days.

Chris Mooney is a science and political journalist, podcaster and the host of Climate Desk Live. He is the author of four books, including the New York Times bestselling The Republican War on Science.
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  • Anonymous

    >When it’s winter on Earth, it’s also summer on Earth… somewhere else. Thus, allow us to counter anecdotal evidence about cold weather with more anecdotal evidence: It’s blazing hot in Australia, with temperatures, in some regions, set to possibly soar above 120 degrees Fahrenheit in the coming days.<
    It was worth a try, but expecting boorish Americans to look at what's going on outside their own borders is usually fruitless.

  • Anonymous

    But being in denial is so much easier!

    Eric Erikson sure is an idiot, One book written thousands of years ago by sheep farmers is more trustworthy to that fool than the work today of thousand of well-educated scientists.

  • Anonymous

    Its very hard to understand what you don’t want to believe

  • Linn Schulz

    You failed to mention how much measurable ice is being lost in the Arctic, changing hunting patterns for predator animals as well as for humans. And most glaciers are shrinking or disappearing. “When President Taft created Glacier National Park in 1910, it was home to an estimated 150 glaciers. Since then the number has decreased to fewer than 30, and most of those remaining have shrunk in area by two-thirds” according to National Geographic. Glacial retreat is causing problems in Europe because, among other reasons, cows can’t reach their summer pastures.

  • Anonymous


  • David Markham

    I put a lot more faith in global warming than in Jesus returning. I don’t even buy that the Jesus as reimagined by fundamentalists in thir own image was ever here to start with. Remember, the dsciples thought Jesus would come back in their lifetime…..

  • valH

    Climate change is happening, and no matter how many self-serving #@%ks want to stick their heads in the sand, it will continue. We may be past the point of no return.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t believe in Jesus OR liberal policy science. I’m stuck!

  • Jack Miller

    Saying that there is a trend a million times does not make it true. Saying that co2 causes global warming does not make it fit with the historical evidence. Yes is it summer in the Antarctic and the January ice is more than it has been in decades.

  • Jack Miller

    The phrase “Climate change is happening” means nothing. In what direction is climate changing? The reality is that we are no where near the extremes in heat or cold, storms or not, of the past.

  • Massgopguy

    yeah, it’s Summer someplace else alright. Like on Antarctica where the Moonbats got stuck in the ice.

  • Anonymous

    We will never be past the point of no return. There’s no money in that.

  • Vedaman

    The whole climate denial argument comes from the U.S.A. fossil fuel industry because they are the main reason we have global warming. They will have to pay for it if they admit their contribution. As usual, it comes down to money. Corporations do not want to pay for their global warming –it takes away from their profits. So they make up quirky comments about the winter to distract citizens from the truth. It plays well to keep their listeners listening. But we’ve seen this before. Its the same strategy the Tobacco companies used. They did not want to pay for the countless deaths they contributed to either. But eventually they did. Sensible people understand this and we know that the fossil fuel industry, like the Tobacco companies, will eventually pay for global warming.

  • Bafazane

    I suppose NASA is left wing too:

  • Anonymous

    I don’t hold out much hope for humanity in the long run. Too many of us are like Mr Millier, arrogant about embracing ignorance…. Facts mean nothing.

  • Anonymous

    Those who deny climate change, have money to make, making it happen. Unfortunately they are also the ones who give bribes, “campaign contributions”, to those unethical enough to prostitute themselves for the dirty bucks.

  • Anonymous

    Earth has been warming steadily for the past century, as can be seen in the rise of sea level as ocean water expands. Extremes in weather for the past few years, in both the warm and the cold directions, are because the Arctic vortex is weak. This causes the Jet Stream to form deep, long-lasting loops rather than shallower, faster-moving ones.

  • Arm of Keaau

    Well of course they are…they are men and women with jobs based in science aren’t they? They are not the gods of industry or religion, so how would they know the “real truth”? (_: FBI

  • Arm of Keaau

    I don’t believe there is anyone in the scientific community arguing against historical evidence Mr. Miller. But what they are telling us is that CO2 seems to be speeding up the current change and that we have the ability to influence that change by modifying our current habits to reduce the current temperature rise. (_: FBI

  • Anonymous

    Actually saying CO2 causes global warming does fir with historical evidence. Whenever the CO2 levels were as high or higher than now, so were the the temperatures. But CO2 is not the only agenda of affecting climate in the past.
    Skip Moreland

  • Jule anderson

    Yes and I ‘m sure these observations you made are from scientists, not ignorant blowhards right?

  • zaidi

    Proof that ‘conservatives’ were the kids in the back of the class room either dozing off, or making ‘spit ball’!

  • electro soundwave


  • Bafazane

    All this science I don’t understand.
    Rocket Man

  • Bafazane

    As opposed to men and women with jobs based on oil etc.
    Scientist against money monger. Who is likely to have the more unethical agenda. Or do I have to scientifically prove it (possibly getting stuck in the ice, thus disproving everything) because you are not honest enough to admit it.

  • David W. Flannigan

    They really think that this Winter is proof there is no Global Climate Change! They are freaking idiots! Seasons still change because of the tilt and orbit of the earth and always will. And Global warming is a natural cycle of the Earth, but Man has to and better take responsibility as a contributor of CO2 emissions that are speeding this cycle up. Convince the Polar Bears that are swimming hundreds of miles and drowning looking for the ice they used for hunting in the past there is no Global Warming….

  • Anonymous

    Thank you, Chris Mooney. And, when it comes to hot spots, let us not forget that water boils at 212…

  • Anonymous

    For those of us who believe… life is eternal… so one’s lifetime is forever.

  • Anonymous

    Pay not attention to Donald Trump. His only interest is keeping his “brand” alive, and he does this by pontificating ridiculousness every now and then.

  • rk

    how is it possible that someone smart enough to make so much money as D. Trump, can be so incredibly clueless? And there’s no shortage of more like him. Guess money isn’t the barometer to true intelligence.

  • ghili

    Dr. Limbaugh, Dr. Drudge, Dr. Trump, and Gomer from Louisiana – now THERE’S a scientific panel I’d bet the future of the planet on … .

  • Anonymous

    What a warm, fuzzy feeling it must be to be smarter than over 95% of the planet’s climate experts, the insurance and financial industries, city and state officials, and the Pentagon, all of whom are including climate change in future planning — all apparently duped by the greatest hoax ever. The “dumbing down” of America starts at the top — trickle down idiocy, greed trumps survival.

  • dina

    How can these people, Trump and Limbaugh be soooo stupid to confuse weather with is too different things.And so many more people belief if it is cold in winter, there is no global warming.Look at the glaciers that are melting, stupids.

  • Sven Johannson

    Doctor Doctor i can urinate… doctor.. nice John but your dying of heart failure

  • Pepe Soria

    The greed intersects with low-intellect, which enjoys being told that they are “Actually superior to the smart kids.” That the intelligent children are in fact foolish, because after all, Christ is returning and they will all be “Raptured” anyway. One doesn’t go after evidence with contra-evidence, but making ridiculous claims about conspiracies. FOLLOW THE MONEY. Who has most to gain?

  • Keith Barber

    I wonder if the fossil fuel folks have another planet lined up for them to escape to with their ill-gotten gains when they;ve made Earth uninhabitable. Or are they so selfish that they figure they will have already died at that point and they don’t care what happens to their children or grandchildren?

  • mewesley

    It’s time for a new term. (The loudest) Republicans can only think in bumper stickers so change the bumper sticker.

  • Arm of Keaau

    Do you recognize sarcasm when you see it Cowboy? Obviously not! (_: FBI

  • Tim Taylor

    I realize this remark will probably be ripped to shreds on here. Even though I have posted elsewhere on Moyers a handful of times. And, in the process received the highest numbers of “thumbs ups”. ie, I am neither a Republican or any other label that has become used as a form of social violence by fanatics on both sides of the false left-right meme.

    But, I must state that there are tenants behind science that are necessary to prove or disprove theories. Many people who are compassionate and kind understand that anthropogenic global warming is a hoax. That includes many of the top solar physicists. Many others cannot actually defend the science but still rabidly defend the argument because their “team” is behind it. That CO2 has risen one one hundredth of one percent higher than at any time we have ever been able to measure in a handful of ice core samples, has proven to be much to do about nothing. CO2 is a dependent variable that has always risen after temperature has risen. ie, It is a symptom and not the problem over the last 450,000 odd years. I am not going to sit here and debate the facts. I have the data. Do your own diligence and see that I am backed by science.

    If this author and others actually understood that a theory is not reality and that these current theories have not been peer reviewed by dissenting fields of study that have understood solar cycles play what appears to be a dominant role in weather and temperature. The U.S. Academy of Sciences has a very large, very detailed research paper essentially debunking global warming that was primarily written by NASA. Yes, the same NASA that has been an advocate of anthropogenic global warming. Because their are dissenting views within NASA. But most solar physicists that I am aware of support the A of S findings that the sun is the dominant driver of weather and temperature.

    Does the author understand scientific falsification? He should. But I doubt he does or he wouldn’t have written this post. Because anthropogenic global warming has already been falsified scientifically. It has already been proven to be an invalid theory.

    Now, there is no need for those who don’t understand science or scientific falsification to personalize my remarks and respond in kind by assailing my character. Do your diligence. Understand the science. Don’t blame me for bursting your bubble. Global warming is over. It peaked, along with temperature, which the IPCC clearly now admits happened 18 years ago. 18 years of no warming. Their predictions have all failed. The reality is that AGW is most likely part of the same elements the corporate state and self interested science has been using against us for years. But, most people aren’t actually willing to entertain how deep the rabbit hole goes. The corruption, deceit and lies are everywhere. The Democratic aristocracy and liberal elites have hijacked science to serve their self interested objectives just as the Republicans have.

  • Bafazane

    Sorry but sarcasm looks so much blatant GW denial these days. As a cowboy I try to shoot straight on these matters.

  • skeptic

    Ratio of annually accumulating cyclical change statistics that indicates climatic change during all of anno domini vs. “Second Coming”……..2013 to 0.

  • Abbey doggone
  • Tom Hood

    your in a small minority who claim to have the science to disproof climate change and that man has no impact on the planet logic dictates otherwise

  • William Nailen

    Cite your scientists and studies. “Many scientists” do not qualify. There is no US Academy of Science that I can locate. Please supply link or address, name of paper, or anything. One question: do you receive any of the 1.9 million dollars used by major petrochemical companies to obfuscate the issue? Here’s a link for you:

  • Anonymous

    So in OTHER words, you in your “objectivity” are in fact a Right Wing Concern Troll, @disqus_wraX2NVRgU:disqus.

    Blocked – and reported for making up your own facts.

  • Jesse Calhoon

    Science has tenants? Why not. Money’s got to come from somewhere. And a theory is not reality? Only if you use “theory” the way creationists do when talking about evolution. If you really understand science, you know a theory is the explanation that best fits the facts. Anthropogenic global warming is a scientific theory in the best sense of the term. Oh, and one last thing. You’re not entitled to your own facts.

  • Anonymous

    Why let Tramp get away with calling it Global Warming when it is more accurate to refer to it as Climate Change? Don’t let the idiots like Tramp try to define it in a way that they can ignore facts and ridicule it.

  • pojo

    Tim Taylor, have you a link to the NASA paper you are citing? Someone else here posted a NASA link arguing the AGW viewpoint.

  • Robin Berss Ross

    Come on, he can`t be that much of an MORON.

  • Micaela

    Anthropogenic means “originating in human activity”. Sometimes experts use too many big words. Remember Silent Spring and Rachel Carson and acid rain? Maybe there won’t be a nuclear accident anywhere on earth, too, what with all the scientific backup systems and all. Some experts seem to think so. But hey, when you “have the facts” there’s no way to find a new solution, either.

  • Anonymous

    Please do review your wrong idea of what “a theory” means scientifically. You use it in the same sense as the Creationists, as in “just a theory”. Do you also hold that humans threw saddles on dinosaurs and rode them around to herd cattle?

  • David Buzzell

    I’m not a real scientist, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express:
    Ocean currents like the Gulf Stream are driven by the temperature differential between the ice caps and the equator. I’ve been to Alaska and Moosonee, near James Bay – native people from those areas know that the ice has been melting for many decades, and that it is accelerating.
    When there is less ice the ocean currents will slow down, and less warm water flowing will mean colder temperatures, on average, in between the equator and the poles. As the ice melts the water seeks level, which means more water and weight at the equator. More weight at the equator means more pressure on the earth at the equator. Less water (ice) at the poles means less pressure at the poles. Changes in weight distribution and pressure could cause more volcanic activity. Volcanos spew out huge amounts of global warming pollution.
    Methane is coming out of the permafrost and bubbling up out of the warming waters. I keep hearing that ice sheet break off unexpectedly. My questions for the real scientists: Have all of the above factors been plugged into the formulas for how fast climate change is occurring, i.e. the tipping point?
    Meanwhile the same criminal* Koch brothers that own the fake Tea Party and the GOP, obviously for the purpose of protecting or increasing trickle down tax cuts charged to our grandkids (who can’t vote against taxation without representation), also own leases on vast areas of tar sands in Canada, and are the major backers/producers of the deniosphere on climate change.

    *The Koch brothers were caught and fined for stealing millions of gallons of crude oil from federal and Native American lands. Their own brother William Koch said this about Charles and David Koch: “I did not want my family, my legacy, my father’s legacy to be based upon organized crime.”

  • Anonymous

    No, but his followers are

  • Anonymous

    don’t you mean “tenets”?

  • Anonymous

    I think the people in Japan and at Chernobyl can attest to the fact that there HAS been a very serious nuclear accident, and us folks on the west coast are soon to find out about more serious consequences of Fukishima than they are telling us about

  • Anonymous

    I see some really strange comments here, particularly from those who still think that climate change is theoretical. If you’re under the age of 60, chances are good that within the next 5 years or so, your skepticism will evaporate. In fact, many really real scientists say that we have already reached the point of no return.

  • Anonymous

    Even worse than CO2 emissions is the overwhelming release of methane into the atmosphere due to the warming of heretofore frozen regions, plus incredible amounts of trapped methane being released by fracking in efforts to supply us with natural gas.

  • Anonymous

    They and their fellow billionaires are building underground habitats to “weather out” the climate crisis.

  • Anonymous

    In the meantime, while there’s a lot of ice in Antarctica, the North Pole is almost devoid of ice. And now nations, including the U.S. are dickering over who gets to drill there.

  • Tim Taylor

    What exactly does the age of 60 have to do with anything? I know your
    remarks are intended for me since I am the only person posting on here
    to appreciate that AGW is a theory. Even the pseudo scientists who
    created it know it is a theory. I would suggest some remedial education
    to appreciate what a theory is versus what facts are.

    No one doubts the global climate is changing. But thanks for putting words in my mouth that allow you to perpetuate a false meme. The issue is if
    humanity has caused it through the release of C02. Once again, C02 has
    only risen one one hundredth of one percent above prior measured
    levels. A fact. So, how much has humanity caused? Probably no more
    than 200 one thousandths of one percent at best. I think you would find
    that to be a generally accepted number. But, it’s irrelevant because
    C02 is a dependent variable that lags climate change in every measured
    ice core sample. A small fact that is ignored by AGW proponents who
    don’t understand basic mathematics or simply don’t want to believe
    science because it doesn’t fit into their “team’s” false meme.

    Once again, the IPCC has admitted that the planet has not warmed in 18
    years. So, where is your evidence that I will experience an awakening
    in coming years? We just reached solar maxima last month. So, don’t
    expect it to get any warmer in your timeline of the next five years. A
    timeline you obviously just made up without any science or facts.

    Everything I typed on here is available as scientific fact. Where do you get your facts? Where is your science to back up your remarks so that I can
    show you what scientific falsification actually is? I’m tired of
    responding to people who have no idea what they are talking about.
    That’s why our country is in this mess. We have been dumbed-down by
    bureaucrats who feint knowledge.

  • Albert Ross

    If it isn’t happening right in front of them, it doesn’t exist. If it’s cold in the US it must be cold in Australia & below the Equator.

  • Mike Valentino

    your cherry picking your data on ipcc

    Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over

    decades to millennia. The atmosphere and ocean have warmed, the amounts of snow and ice have diminished, sea level has

    risen, and the concentrations of greenhouse gases have increased

  • Dude

    Very interesting post Tim. Could you send a link or recommend reading that is objective on the topic. I am always sceptical of “conventional” wisdom. I have always looked at global warming as an important topic because if there is even a 10 pct chance that it is being caused by man – its something we need to have a real national debate about. That said, all I ever hear are the emotional rants of the right and left with each side presenting data based on their heresay assumptions. I want to get to the actual science. I dont have a scientific background, but there must be something written for the layman that lays out the basic science behind the debate.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t they know a frozen hurricane when they see one?

  • Anonymous

    on a related note, Australia is experiencing record high temperatures this week.

  • musicandart

    Your use of the the word “theory” in this context shows that you don’t even know what a scientific theory is. It is not something that hasn’t been proven, just the opposite. Please take a course in biology or physical anthropology and then come back when you know what you’re talking about, aren’t prone to cherry picking facts and trying to sell conclusions you’ve already come to because of what what one of the Koch Brothers mouthpieces told you.

  • Dan Chrisman

    2013 is the hottest year ever for Australia since they started recording temps back in 1910. Now how exactly is getting hotter not getting hotter again?

  • Tim Taylor

    Additionally, re the other verbal attack on my credentials and character that assailed my knowledge of what a theory is and isn’t, gravity itself is not a theory. That remark by another commenter was completely unscientific and showed a basic ignorance of science. We need to be honest and point out these attacks on science, reason and facts if we are ever to move forward in our society. Gravity is a known. What is a theory is how and why gravity works. AGW is no different. It is a theory as to how and why climate works. What is different is that AGW is already a disproven, already falsified theory. Science has already falsified it as a theory. Gravitational theory has not been falsified, but instead has actually been proven through many predictable outcomes.

    For those who don’t understand science, the provability of a theory cannot be gained through observation. It can only be disproven. Amazing how little people actually know about science in our nation.

  • Jack Miller

    Climate is a measure of the average pattern of variation in temperature, humidity,atmospheric pressure, wind, precipitation, atmospheric particle count and othermeteorological variables in a given region over long periods of time. Australia is experiencing weather. Without the adjustments made in the historical data, there has been virtually no change in the average temperature for a very long time. For the past 15 years, with all eyes focused on the issue, there has been virtually no change in the average temperature. The number of tornadoes and other extreme weather phenomenon has actually declined. The alarmist models have failed for 15 years. 15 years is a very short amount of time, in the grand scheme, but we should not make the mistakes of countries like Germany, where polluting coal has been substituted for clean nuclear.

  • Jack Miller

    The problem proponents are having is that the predictions of the climate alarmist have not been coming true. The number of severe weather events are actually down. The severity of the events are generally not setting new records. Everyone knows that there is enough variability in the weather for new records to be frequently set somewhere, but, nowadays, the alarmist tend to falsely declare every event to have been the greatest of all time. The reality is that there is about the same amount of ice in Antarctica today as there was on average for hundreds of years. Indeed, it appears that the January average is going to be the greatest since well before 1988. Just because there are a lot of people who benefit financially from the belief that “we have reached the point of no return” does not make it so. The facts, at least for 15 to 18 years, are telling a different story.

  • Jack Miller

    You are making a point about weather, not a point about climate change.

  • Jack Miller

    All science begins with skepticism of the “known”. The key to good science is open minded observation. We currently have 15 to 18 years of observations that do not fit the climate alarmist models.

  • Jack Miller

    The atmosphere has not warmed for 18 years. The amount of ice in the antarctic appears to be setting a 30 plus year record. In a number of places where alarmist declared permanent drought, there has been rain and snow. The dune lines at the beaches in South Carolina are as far back as they have been in 40 years. The climate projections by dozens of models are no where near the extremes projected.

  • Jack Miller

    Amazing that the thought of a nuclear accident is used as a fear tactic when we know that millions and millions and millions of people die from the production and burning of coal. The safest fuel to date has been nuclear and there will have to be thousands of accidents at nuclear to ever catch up with the deaths from coal.

  • Jack Miller

    Keep on breathing the air man. You won’t live long enough for nuclear radiation to get you–oops, unless you have a few MRI’s or unless you are a frequent flyer.

  • Jack Miller

    Pay attention to the reality instead of to what is said by the special interest. There is more ice today than there has been in decades.

  • Jack Miller

    Galileo believed his observations, despite what the other 99.99% believed.

  • Jack Miller

    CO2 was many times higher during one of the ice ages. Explain why temperature has not gone up for 18 years while co2 concentrations have.

  • Jack Miller

    As a result of the use of natural gas in our power plants, replacing coal, the USA is leading the world in reducing the output of co2. Methane is captured by the ocean. There are trillions of cubic feet of methane hydrates on the ocean floor. Japan is close to the development of economic mining of same.

  • Jack Miller

    It was the head of NASA who had to explain his overly aggressive “mistakes” in “adjusting” the data.

  • Jack Miller

    NASA is 100% dependent on government funding.

  • SaillorBoy

    Kind of like how evolution is only a theory? Oh wait, it doesn’t even have enough evidence to back it up to become a theory!

  • Anonymous

    When Siberians are plucking the tusks of the Woolly Mammoths, extinct for 10,000 years out of the receding edge of melting glaciers, then we have irrefutable evidence of Global Warming. Some theories are never proved, but that does not make them any less factual.
    I would rather not wait until the US has lost both coastlines, hundreds of miles inland.

  • Anonymous

    That much money is only the barometer of true greed. Being wealthy doesn’t necessarily require intelligence. One lucky investment or real estate deal and your money just grows on it’s own.

  • Closinhtown

    Your eyes can tell you that there’s something wrong. Science has already proven this. 98% of the worlds scientist agree on this. The climate is declining as we speak world wide. Sea levels rising. Sea temps rising and yet you think you’re smarter than them? Maybe you should retake that fourth grade class.

  • Micaela

    That’s the Jetson’s defense of nukes. Well, for safety there’s always solar, biothermal, the other solutions that don’t have the exponentilal potential for catastrophe that dwarf coal deaths. It’s good to have the discussion, without spinning off into absolute certainty prematurely when one of the confetti bits that land on the brainstorm table conflicts with one’s paradigm. Interesting that new research into Aids shows that rather than a direct linear assault on the virus, it’s the bystander cells that may have the solution.

  • Anonymous

    We’ve been given predictions of doomsday for many, many years. I repeat myself, there will never be a point of no return. There is no money in that.

  • Mel A Justed

    Trouble is, how does one feel the difference. I look outside, it’s 28 degrees with a skiff of snow. It doesn’t feel 0.2 degrees C warmer. And what is this degrees C thing, anyway, a progressive plot to indoctrinate our impressionable youth in socialism?
    This is where the rational and the irrational split on the debate. “If I can’t see it right now, it must be false”. I can’t see Jesus, yet 80+% of us believe in him. “It’s a progressive plot to redistribute income”. Gee, the richest folks in the world, such as Bill Gates, didn’t get that way from hard work, luck, and government giveaways? “The climate has always changed, and what we’re experiencing is just another climate cycle of the Natural Earth”. Sure. There is also no correlation between sucking water out of the ground in Florida and sinkholes in the vicinity. Ditto levees on the Mississippi and the erosion of it’s Delta….mere coincidence. Man’s activities have no impact whatsoever on this giant blue ball.
    What it may well come down to is fear. A fearful folk won’t like change, especially that which might have some impact on their miserable little lives. There were people who were scared of the car when it debuted, and the train before that. Bummer for them that the rate of change can only increase. Those that aren’t prepared for it will be left behind with only their memories of yesterday to bring them comfort.

  • Michael Tenzer

    A 2013 study published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Research Letters analyzed around 12,000 papers published in the peer-reviewed scientific literature between 1991 and 2011, identified by searching the ISI Web of Science citation index engine for the text strings “global climate change” or “global warming”. About ⅓ of these papers expressed an opinion about global warming in their abstract, and of these, 97% endorsed the position that humans are causing global warming.[41]

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  • Anonymous

    Yes, you are not a scientist. Just about every “fact” you stated has been refuted by real science, including the crap about volcanoes. Their impact is negligible, no matter how big or impressive their eruptions have been.
    Furthermore, unless you completely reject the data from the Vostok ice cores, any “scientist” or engineer looks at the graph and immediately infers that in all likelihood, we are approaching the next Big Ice Age. If anything, the CO2 we’re pumping into the atmosphere might forestall its start by hundreds or thousands of years.
    Think about an Ice Age starting… 9 or more billion humans trying to survive between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn because virtually every other arable acre is under glaciers or permafrost? Not my idea of a fun time. Yours?
    I just copied a graph that indicates that labor unions have outspent the Koch brothers by orders of magnitude. It’ll be on my home page at plusaf dot com soon. Show us YOUR data.

  • Anonymous

    Joe, you’re making the assumption that NASA scientists don’t “have a dog in the fight” or aren’t in the LEAST beholden’ to their next grant for research and are so squeaky-clean that they would NEVER write a biased report when the real data might put a stop to their next research grant. Or didn’t you notice?
    Find sources of information or data where the provider has NO axe to grind or personal or financial benefit to be gained from publishing their conclusions.
    I trust Burt Rutan one hell of a lot more than I trust or believe Donald The Trump. Or most actors in Hollywood with opinions and bully pulpits.

  • Anonymous

    You mean 98% of the scientists who agree with you, don’t you?
    The data on tornadoes and hurricanes is real and does NOT support your claims.
    Sort of like claims that hurricanes or tornadoes cause “much more damage” when the measure is “value of property damage or loss,” which never accounts for the FACT that there are tons more people living in the paths of those storms than there were decades or scores of years ago.
    So OF COURSE, the “damage will be greater,” because there’s more there TO DAMAGE.
    Critical Thinking in the US is dead.

  • Anonymous


  • Anonymous

    1, 2 and 3 — invalid “argument” unless you argue both sides… who benefits from “claims of Climate Change being a huge problem,” as well as who’s financing BOTH sides of the research… and consensus is NOT the same as “truth.” Many of the 98%’s “proofs” have been discredited, but True Believers don’t accept any argument that doesn’t support their side of the argument.

  • Anonymous

    Consensus is not the same as “truth” or “accuracy,” no matter how many people vote on it.

  • Anonymous

    They also don’t have any degree of economic competitiveness to justify dumping tons of money into subsidies which might better be used to solve other more pressing “problems,” too.

  • Anonymous

    Nothing beats a good conspiracy theory… especially the “what they’re not telling us” kind.

  • Anonymous

    Ad hominem… the last resort of someone losing an argument.
    Carry on as usual, Dr.

  • Anonymous

    That polar bear claim is just BS, if you ever looked at real data.
    Sorry. It’s a fun meme to replicate across minds, but that doesn’t mean it’s true. Polar bear populations have increased dramatically in recent decades, mostly due to decreased hunting and killing of them.. Zoos can hardly get any any more.

  • Anonymous

    Jack, come on… afterallthat won’t understand or believe you. Their belief is apparently that fracking releases methane into the atmosphere.
    Anyone fracking for methane (natural gas) loses the value of any such leaks and would be stupid to let leaks happen in the first place, but heck, that’s back to Eco 101 again, isn’t it… another thing beyond their ken.
    Maybe if Japan harvests those hydrates, some methane will be released into the atmosphere, so does that mean Japan MUST BE STOPPED, too?

  • Anonymous

    No, the real science shows that temperature increases LED the increases in CO2, but of course, you won’t believe that or anything that supports it.

  • Anonymous

    Well, if you WANT to believe Global Warming is a fake in the face of all sorts of evidence to the contrary, and would rather insult ME than admit that Man-Made Climate Change is melting both Poles and raising both the temperature and level of the ocean water, @plusaf:disqus – I guess I’ll just call YOU names, too, because you clearly don’t GIVE a crap about your own planet.

  • David W. Flannigan

    Not to mention all the gas Cows pass around the world, it makes up a percentage as well..

  • David W. Flannigan

    I’m 59 and I know that when I was a teen I would lay on the beach all day and get a sunburn. Now if you lay on the beach for an hour you get fried. That is not my imagination! We don’t get 4 seasons a year like we did when I was young either. It now goes from hot to cold and back again. Also not my imagination! I don’t need research or statistics to tell me there has been radical changes in the weather in the last 40 years. And the number of storms may have declined, but the severity has gotten worse. Also Oil will be gone in another 35 years and that’s it. no more, so time is running out to make alternative changes in the way we use energy in this world. But keep doubting, that most certainly seems like the best way to waste time!

  • David W. Flannigan

    And the frozen tundra is releasing a large amount of methane as it melts along with the ice caps..

  • Kylie McKee

    Um… In New Zealand we measure temperature in degrees Celsius… It’s all what you’re used to right?!
    But seriously, living in the green bowl of the Waikato Valley, historically our richest dairy land, I am witnessing climate change. We had a national drought last year, and just 4 years ago had a one in a hundred year drought. And guess what… It’s summer now and we are yet again fearing for our pasture due to massive moisture deficits in soil, ground dry and cracking, farmers in a panic.
    Climate change has happened.
    I fear for our future, as a dairy producing country I think our days are numbered….

  • James Francisco

    Seems to me that It’s only based on trends when it’s hot.

  • Anonymous

    I think you missed the sarcasm. I believe the degrees C being a socialist plot was a facetious comment. You’ve got irony in New Zealand too, right?

    In New Zealand and Australia you guys seem to be experiencing even more rapid change than in the Northern Hemisphere. It is frightening yet I’ve read recently that Australia’s prime minsiter is going back on some of the measures agreed upon by the government there to mitigate climate change! It’s a real shame because some of the things they’re doing in your part of the world gave me hope, except for the coal extraction and exportation….. That’s going on in the US as well, of course. It makes one wonder what the plan is. This kind of thing obviously cannot continue.

    Someone on here said that people don’t take climate change seriously in their decisions when buying a car but really the public has been confused by a massive disinformation campaign lead by corporativists some of whom actually look forward to melting ice because it will make it easier to drill for oil. We are up against hard odds. Sometimes I think we are doomed.

  • Kylie McKee

    I fear you are right… How can I, as one of the disempowered masses, find a way to force change toward renewable energy and other resources? It’s hard to feel so helpless!
    And whether or not scientist and experts agree on man’s contribution to climate change, the fact remains we are eventually going to exhaust finite resources. So a paradigm shift IS going to happen… How do we make the shift be promoted through choice?

  • Anonymous

    “I wonder if the fossil fuel folks have another planet lined up for them to escape to”, I know it, man! I’ve wondered the same thing myself! What is their plan? Perhaps they aren’t even really earthlings? What the h-ll are they going to do with all that money when there’s no food to eat because all the crops have failed? When all the water has been contaminated and is undrinkable do to their fracking? Are they just nihilists? What’s the plan?

  • Anonymous

    Are they building underground habitats? Some of them are so removed from reality that I wouldn’t be surprised if this were true. I know Russian gazillionaires are investing in research for immortality.

  • Tim Taylor

    Unchallenged claims? The responses should be limited to reasoned, scientific responses. Not character assassinations that seemingly are allowed by the moderator.

  • moderator


    First of all I am the moderator, and I am telling you if you feel any responses are character assassinations please flag those comments. I have so far seen no evidence of any such behavior in your interactions. As well, please re-read our comment policy. For any further questions or complaints, please refrain from using the threads and email us.

    Thank You,

    Sean (the moderator) @ Moyers

  • marquinho gaucho

    Yeah its cold here in NJ but we had record highs 2 days before. 2 years ago it was 64 in January

  • james d.

    The events of the past week or so fit the global warming model. Because the Arctic is warmer the jet stream, that river of air that swirls around the northern hemisphere, is developing a more erratic pattern of dips that are pushing frigid Arctic air deeper into the southern United States.

    Yesterday in Iqaluit, Nunavut in Canada’s far north recorded category one hurricane strength winds with gusts over 87 mph. This is unheard of for this part of the country. The UK also received an extra punch of severe winds and rain last week and Egypt’s Sphinx were covered in snow in December, a first in over a century. London’s Gattwick airport was flooded twice in the last month after consultants had told airport authorities that the likelihood of flooding was a one in a thousand year event!

    Meanwhile Australia experienced last year its hottest summer on record and it looks as if it is going to be repeated again with temperatures in the mainland reaching 120 F yesterday. How people can ignore what 99% of the best climate scientists are telling us is beyond belief.

    Even without the science, if you sit back and think about the world’s weather over the last decade isn’t it a no brainer, that something is terribly wrong with our weather patterns. Donald, maybe the few strands left of your comb over caused your brain to partially freeze. Get inside and talk to people who know what they are talking about.
    Global warming is not an opinion it is now a scientific empirically proven truth that people are in denial of.

    I guess it will take another hurricane to hit New York for the Donald to wake up.

  • Daniela G. Rubin

    Bless Chris Mooney!

  • Daniela G. Rubin

    right on!

  • Daniela G. Rubin

    I admire your angry truth! Keep on telling it!

  • Tom Hood

    i didn’t know that i bet sauropods were hard to toss a saddle on

  • Tom Moran

    Well written Chris. The issue with your counter argument is you link warm weather events as evidence for climactic global warming but discount cold weather events and use them as possible proof that the Earth is warming exclusively due to humankind. That is foolish to claim very warm temperatures is Austrailia are evidence of global warming but very cold temperatures may also be caused by warming.There is little doubt that we have warmed this planet. Great scientists disagree on how much warming by ECS and on warming by what processes. What you have witnessed Rev. Mooney is natural variability stealing the altar from the religion of non falsifiability.

  • Tom Moran

    There is no competent scientific consensus that is predicting flooding of the type or magnitude you describe. Not even on thousand year time scales….the 11 likes are indicative of the sheeple on the anti-progress side of the debate. We built the Hoover damn but the projected 7 inches per century of sea level rise would be unmanageable?
    What caused the Earth to be warm enough for Mammoths to be that far North Pegasus ? Fossil fuels or natural climate variability? The answer is the same force that is causing 99.96% of the warming today.