Climate change skeptics rejoice! A team of top-notch researchers brought new evidence that global warming hiatus may be real in a study published in Nature Climate Change. Scientists say that they detected a slowdown in the rate of global temperature rise in the early 2000s.
The findings are at odds with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s conclusions, which have dismissed any trace of a pause in global warming. Yet, the issue remains controversial.
Three years ago, the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said that there was indeed a slowdown in global warming between 1998 and 2012 as compared with 1951 levels.
Nevertheless, the panel noted that ‘natural variability’ and short term records may tamper with the accuracy of their scientific finding. The group also said that the study results may not reflect long-term trends in climate science.
Yet, the report was often cited by climate change deniers as the strongest evidence that global warming theory may be biased from start ever since. But recent studies have challenged the 2013 conclusions.
The most notable research was conducted by the NOAA, which found that the ‘pause’ never existed. The agency based its conclusions on ‘newly corrected and updated’ data on changes in sea temperatures in the last decades.
Another study dismissed the notion of a global warming pause simply because scientists worldwide hadn’t reached a consensus on what a global warming hiatus may be. And the most popular definition of the hiatus doesn’t hold water over long-term periods.
But a recent study brings the global warming pause into the limelight once more. Top climate researchers from the National Center for Atmospheric Research, the Canadian Center for Climate Modeling and Analysis (whose John Fyfe led the team), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and Penn State University currently say that global warming slowdown was real.
They cite rates of global surface warming in the early 2000s that are slower than the average rates generated through computer simulations. Nevertheless, the team didn’t reach the conclusion that global warming is no more.
Stephan Lewandowsky from the University of Bristol and co-author of several studies questioning the pause explained that the new research paper simply found a mismatch between climate change models for the early 2000s and actual climate data.
Lewandowsky added that he talked to Fyfe’s team, and they all agreed on the fact that global warming is far from over.
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