The Top 4 Global Warming Myths and What Science Really Says

There are many myths surrounding global warming. Many people don’t understand what global warming means, and have a hard time believing that global warming is what is making weather patterns more dangerous.

Folks also have a hard time believing that global warming can lead to harsher winters. There is a lot of misinformation being put out, mostly because of how serious an issue global warming is.

The 4 Top Global Warming Myths

If you are curious about the status of global warming myths, and you want to learn what science really says, you have come to the right place. We have searched the internet to figure out if there is truth to some of the myths surrounding global warming. You may find that the truth, may be much darker than the myth itself.

We want to state pretty early on that Global Warming is not a myth and is supported by over 97% of the climate science community.

1. Carbon Dioxide Cannot Cause Global Warming

On March 9, 2012, Joe Bastardi exclaimed, “CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) cannot cause global warming. I’ll tell you why. It doesn’t mix well with the atmosphere, for one. For two, its specific gravity is 1 ½ time that of the rest of the atmosphere. It heats and cools much quicker. Its radiative processes are much different. So it cannot – it literally cannot cause global warming.”

The above statement is absolutely false on multiple levels.

Let’s break down why these statements are false by refuting the following pieces of the statement:

  • Carbon dioxide doesn’t cause global warming
  • Carbon dioxide doesn’t mix well with the atmosphere

First, greenhouse gasses, which are mostly Carbon Dioxide did in fact control ancient climate changes. Currently, human use of fossil fuels has caused extensive damage to the climate. The use of fossil fuels leads to Carbon Dioxide emissions.

What are the geological records Show?

This global warming myth is refuted because the geological record proves that Carbon Dioxide was the causer of global warming conditions in the Earth’s past. The Geological Society initially put out a statement on climate change and the geological record. This statement proved that CO2 is a major modifier of the environment

In 2013 the Geological Society put out an addendum, re-claiming that Carbon Dioxide is, in fact, a modifier of the environment, and claim that there is even more research that backs this claim. The paper proves this by first telling the history of ice ages and warming patterns.

The Geological Society claims that we are actually living in atypical times. We are in an inter-glacial period in which are temperature is representative of 10% of the temperature over the past 800,000 years. The other 90% of the time temperatures around the planet were lower, ice sheets were larger, and sea levels were lower.

In their 2013 addendum

The Geological Society goes on to state key factors for climate change. Those factors are as follows:

  • Change in the Earth’s orbit and axial tilt
  • Changes in the output of the sun
  • Alteration in the amounts of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (Carbon Dioxide is a major greenhouse gas)

Over the past 11,000 years, temperatures have been slowly rising. The main takeaway from the Geological Society’s paper is that global warming is not new, it has been represented in the geological historical record before.

The Greenhouse Effect refutes the notion that Carbon Dioxide does not mix well with the environment.

In 1859, the first recorded research about the potential role of Carbon Dioxide as a greenhouse gas was given by John Tyndall. Further research indicates that atmospheric Carbon Dioxide has thermal insulating properties. That is the actual effect of the physics of Carbon Dioxide interacting with the atmosphere.

2. It’s the Sun Myth

global warming myth. solar flare image

Image  Source: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) via Flickr

Some global warming myths will say that the Earth isn’t rising in temperature, rather it is the sun that is increasing the temperature of the Earth currently. This claim was made on the BBC by Dr. David Whitehouse claiming, “Over the past few hundred years, there has been a steady increase in the numbers of sunspots, a trend that has accelerated in the past century, just at the time when the Earth has been getting warmer.”

Thankfully, NASA has proof that the changes in the Earth’s temperature are not entirely due to the sun. According to NASA, since 1978 a series of satellite instruments have measured the energy output of the sun. Data from a satellite shows that there is actually a drop in solar irradiance.

This proves that it is not the sun that is actually contributing to the Earth rising in temperature.

Lastly, there are proxy indicators that prove that the sun is not a major factor in global warming. There is a way to figure out how much carbon is in tree rings. A recent analysis of carbon in tree rings proves that solar irradiance is not accountable for 10% of this century’s warming.

3. How Reliable Are Climate Models

There are some who believe that the climate models many scientists use are not accurate enough to depict global warming and climate change. This is actually incorrect. Climate models are mathematical systems used to analyze data and discover trends.

Most of the folks who refute climate models are not even scientists. Most of the people that refute climate models are talk show hosts or folks who are linked to some conservative agenda. Science actually says that the mathematical models used are rather conservative.

This means that scientific models are more ready to air on the side of caution, then they are to make grandiose claims. This fact actually proves that climate models are not unreliable, and are created to remove a certain level of bias and hyperbole.

4. Surface Temperature Records Are Unreliable

In 2009, Anthony Watts of The Heartland Institute stated, “We found stations located next to the exhaust fans of air conditioning units, surrounded by asphalt parking lots and roads, on blistering-hot rooftops, and near sidewalks and buildings that absorb and radiate heat. We found 68 stations located at wastewater treatment plants, where the process of waste digestion causes temperatures to be higher than in surrounding areas… In fact, we found that 89 percent of the stations – nearly 9 of every 10 – fail to meet the National Weather Service’s own siting requirements that stations must be 30 meters (about 100 feet) or more away from an artificial heating or radiating/reflecting heat source. “

Anthony Watts’ claim brings up the concern of whether or not instruments that have been used to monitor the climate are actually accurate. Watts wonders if the conditions that temperature monitors exist in, could have some form of effect on the actual readings the instruments take.

A few scientific articles have been released to speak on this concern. In 2010 Matthew J. Menne, a member of the National Climatic Data Center, wrote a paper with the title, “On the reliability of the US surface temperature record.”

What is the Result?

The results of this paper actually had an astonishing conclusion. According to Menne, the temperatures that were taken from various climate recording stations showed cooler maximum daily temperatures compared to the average daily temperatures. This partially proves that the environment was not a factor in the reliability of surface temperature records.

Lastly, in 2010 Dr. Richard Mueller wanted to prove that surface temperature records were unreliable. He organized a group called Berkeley Earth to research whether or not the temperature record could be trusted. The questions Richard Mueller wanted to be answered is whether or not temperature rise on land is affected by the following biases:

  • Station quality
  • Homogenization
  • Urban heat island
  • Station selection

At the end of the report, Berkeley Earth found that none of the previously mentioned biases add bias to the temperature record. Thus, there are multiple scientific studies that show that the surface temperature records that exist are valid.

Many Global Warming Myths that Attempt to Disprove Global Warming are Scientifically Incorrect

At the end of the day, there are many global warming myths that try to disprove that global warming is real. Global warming is real, full stop. Many members of the scientific community, over 97%, believe that climate change and global warming are real.

What you will generally find from most global warming myths, is a way to try and discredit temperature readings, discredit geo-history that chronicles a historical record of the earth’s temperatures, and ultimately refute the science that proves global warming’s existence.

Global warming myths are dangerous pieces of misinformation that can cause more harm to our environment than good. It is important that we understand the research that the scientific community has done to debunk myths around global warming. There are a number of tools, instruments, and methods that scientists have used for the past 100 years to monitor the climate and temperature. Most of this scientist come back to the proven fact that Global Warming is real.


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