Climate Science Glossary

Term Lookup

Enter a term in the search box to find its definition.

Settings

Use the controls in the far right panel to increase or decrease the number of terms automatically displayed (or to completely turn that feature off).

Term Lookup

Settings


All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

Home Arguments Software Resources Comments The Consensus Project Translations About Support

Twitter Facebook YouTube Pinterest MeWe

RSS Posts RSS Comments Email Subscribe


Climate's changed before
It's the sun
It's not bad
There is no consensus
It's cooling
Models are unreliable
Temp record is unreliable
Animals and plants can adapt
It hasn't warmed since 1998
Antarctica is gaining ice
View All Arguments...



Username
Password
New? Register here
Forgot your password?

Latest Posts

Archives

Does cold weather disprove global warming?

What the science says...

Select a level... Basic Intermediate

A local cold day has nothing to do with the long-term trend of increasing global temperatures.

Climate Myth...

It's freaking cold!

"Austria is today seeing its earliest snowfall in history with 30 to 40 centimetres already predicted in the mountains. Such dramatic falls in temperatures provide superficial evidence for those who doubt that the world is threatened by climate change." (Mail Online)

It's easy to confuse current weather events with long-term climate trends, and hard to understand the difference between weather and climate. It's a bit like being at the beach, trying to figure out if the tide is rising or falling just by watching individual waves roll in and out. The slow change of the tide is masked by the constant churning of the waves.

In a similar way, the normal ups and downs of weather make it hard to see slow changes in climate. To find climate trends you need to look at how weather is changing over a longer time span. Looking at high and low temperature data from recent decades shows that new record highs occur nearly twice as often as new record lows.

 

New records for cold weather will continue to be set, but global warming's gradual influence will make them increasingly rare.

Basic rebuttal written by Jim Meador


Update July 2015:

Here are related lecture-videos from Denial101x - Making Sense of Climate Science Denial


 

This rebuttal was updated by Judith Matz in September 2021 to replace broken links. The updates are a result of our call for help published in May 2021.

Last updated on 9 July 2015 by pattimer. View Archives

Printable Version  |  Offline PDF Version  |  Link to this page

Argument Feedback

Please use this form to let us know about suggested updates to this rebuttal.

Further viewing

Climate Denial Crock of the Week - "It's cold. So there's no Climate Change" (January 2009)

ClimateAdam (aka Dr. Adam Levy) has his own way to explaine why this claim is nonsensical:

Further reading

NASA explore this subject in more depth in What's the Difference Between Weather and Climate?

Myth Deconstruction

Related resource: Myth Deconstruction as animated GIF

MD Cold

Please check the related blog post for background information about this graphics resource.

Comments

Prev  1  2  3  4  5  Next

Comments 76 to 100 out of 110:

  1. HH: a local account. If you live in the U.S. or Europe and find it's been a chilly winter, move north.
  2. To amplify on DSL's perspicacious (I get paid by the syllable) comment: Source here I hear they'll be growing palm trees by Hudson Bay any time now... And here's why they call it "up" north: That's Polar Amplification in action! The Yooper
  3. Gee, I've gone through the past couple months of these videos by the meteorologist Joe Bastardi of Accuweather.com . This latest one is alarming. I know some folks find anything that is alarming should be met with much skepticism. Bastardi seems to base his understanding only on quite substantially verified evidence. I learned he doesn't appear to totally discount the idea that our influences on the planet might somehow be involved. In one of the other recent video blogs he states the need to go green or carbon neutral is more necessary to avoid greater destruction by cooling than by warming. He appears to be relatively free thinking, coming off the top of his head and valuing honesty and openness as well as have an understanding of basic logic and sound theorizing. Boy, that hit piece on noctilucents that only used 36% of their spread in time to discount their influence appears to have done the trick to keep the alarm of their appearance and increase apparently in step with the increase of carbon dioxide on the planet from consideration. That seems to hold greater impact on the climate, basically via Earth's albedo, than sunspots. As far as I can tell, the sun is still only within one tenth of a percent of its observed output. To have first surface mirrors coat the planet in the mesosphere reflecting perhaps as much as one percent of the incoming sunlight back into space, growing in frequency and duration, that seems to fit in with Bastardi's observations and predictions, on-going global cooling for the foreseeable future. There is a recent finding that the mesosphere within the last couple of months was measured as having reached the lowest temperature ever recorded. Please. Yes there has been record heat. Maybe though we are missing the big picture if we only consider surface temperatures and averages. It is the idea that we are experiencing unpredicted anomalies in the weather AND climate that suggests interpretation of global warming as only increasing and proceeding linearly as quite non-causal. Meteorologist Joe Bastardi discusses satellite evidence of a cooling atmosphere. I don't know, really. I do think that any one who pretends to know is misleading themselves as well as others.
  4. Tom Loeber "He appears to be relatively free thinking" a little too free, in my opinion; free from the influences of the physics of climate, in first place. He goes on and on with analogies and eye-balling correlations while I was waiting for some insight on the mechanisms leading to his predictions. I wasted my time. Not a surprise, though, I know this guy. "Maybe though we are missing the big picture if we only consider surface temperatures and averages." I agree that if one considers only surface temperatures and averages is missing the big picture. I wonder who's doing this. This post was written exactly to counter such kind of over-simplifications. I think we may agree on the simple fact that the globally average surface temperature is the end result of much more complex processes which determines it. No surprise that it took 1000 pages and a lot of scientists time to just summarize in the IPCC AR4 the most recent science. But this end result is what has a direct impact on our lives, so I'll keep watching the surface temperature trend.
  5. Re: Tom Loeber (78) The Big Picture you are missing is that the part of the atmosphere where humans happen to live is the part warming the most. And that the cooling of the stratosphere and mesosphere is an integral part of that warming signal so characteristic of rising levels of CO2. Recent events, both in terms of temperature and precipitation, are being shown to have a causal relationship consistent with AGW. To say that we cannot have a level of understanding deeper than that you've demonstrated is simply incoherent. The Yooper
  6. Yooper, I totally agree with everything you state there and I too am a believer that we have AGW. I guess though staying open with questions as to the possibility of AGW leading to AGC is so much of a no-no that straw-men arguments are seen as worth while. Ah, thank you Riccardo. i see you maybe don't like analogies nor observing the data but would rather there be some kind of grand over-all reaching theory presented as knowledge? You know that guy? Care to elaborate? I tend to like that he seems to not hold certainty but is only looking at confirmable data and what we know from the past to conjecture about the future. The fact that he suggests great alarm at being proved wrong should show that he is not suggesting he knows what the grand scheme is. I wonder as to your wherewithal if the major criticism you have to offer is that he doesn't offer or adhere to any grand theory.
  7. #81: "staying open with questions as to the possibility of AGW leading to AGC is so much of a no-no" An idea is only a 'no-no' if you can't support it with some credible evidence. Do you have any for 'AGW leads to AGC'? Or is that a natural cycle?
  8. Tom Loeber it's really hard for me to understand how you can think I don't like observing the data. It's also hard to understand how you can think he proved anything wrong when he just threw a few insignificant facts, claiming they're conclusive. As for the "grand over-all reaching theory" I don't understant what you're referring to, I don't know any. It may just reflect your perception of the knowledge in climate science accumulated for over two centuries.
  9. Tom, Actually it would be great if you would elaborate. Exactly how will global warming reverse itself into a cooling trend? What negative feedbacks are powerful enough to accomplish this? If Mr. Bastardi is aware of such a mechanism, why hasn't he published his findings? Daniel and Riccardo are arguing from sound scientific principles, while your working assertion that climatologists can't see past averages and surface temperatures is utterly false. You're going to have to do better than that.
  10. Hmmm, I see that the concept of it being natural is considered contemptible by some. I think the evidence that remineralizing soils greatly increases the amount of carbon dioxide sequestering biomass is probably a part of the cycle. I wonder as to the use of the term "natural" and suppose it only holds to something that is not man-made though I think we can argue that humans are a natural phenomenon and their actions on the planet consequentially natural but, seeing ourselves as somehow separate from the equation, isn't that what the deniers are claiming? I think the recent evidence that melting of the caps immediately preceeded major swings of the climate into major ice age conditions is another thing suggesting that warming leads to cooling. Think about it. What provides the energy to put great amounts of the planet's water onto the land masses in mile thick glaciers? Are ice ages where there is more biomass tying up carbon dioxide or might they be the result of more green house gases in the atmosphere, more moisture driven into the atmosphere that leads to more turbulence driving moisture so high and more methane release as to create those noctilucents? I think the Milankovitch cycles are less damning of humanity's actions and why there is evidence that money was spent to spin the evidence in their favor, absolving human activities of any influence. How about that hit piece on noctilucents? Should I go dig up the pdf linked to earlier by another so you could take a closer look at it? i suppose you are aware that much money has been spent to provide research favorable to discounting humanity's influence on climate and weather. I think I could dig up the references to the analysies that suggest millions of dollars have been spent meant to keep us nonchalant and discounting of AGCC, read that as Anthropogenic Global Climate Change. Trueofvoice, I was with you until you presented not understanding what Mr. Bastardi published, with reference to possible cause but at the same time he stated he did not buy into the sun's output lessening himself as being the cause. He did offer that though counter to your claim. As far as referring to Riccardo and Daniel arguing from sound scientific principles, I think you are just continuing with the misinformation. Do you agree that I don't agree with AGW? I mean, it is quite obvious that was not a scientific conjecture of any plausibility and just a simplistic straw-man argument approach. I don't know. It's too bad only those who seem to cater to the idea that there is more than just theory seem to have the temerity to post here. I do hold that us humans as relatively recent biological systems are quite naive and we tend to lend credibility to our organization experiments beyond any sense or reason even to the extent of considering this message board as beyond error, beyond censoring or bias. I know that is not truth though many have countered that it is not so.
  11. Tom Loeber, Um... I'm not sure how you can present Joe Bastardi as in any way reasonable. He is very much the opposite. It looks very much like you're simply trying to build him up as reasonable and scientific to get people to keep reading, only to reach his personal punchline, which is that AGW is a hoax.
    I know some folks find anything that is alarming should be met with much skepticism.
    That was your tag line to make it seem like you're on the AGW side of the fence.
    Bastardi seems to base his understanding only on quite substantially verified evidence.
    Um, sorry, no, he bases it on the same, old, tired denial arguments that this site exists to debunk.
    I learned he doesn't appear to totally discount the idea that our influences on the planet might somehow be involved.
    Um, sorry, no, he is in complete denial about AGW, and there's no way of arguing otherwise (if you honestly think you can prove otherwise, please provide a cite).
    ...he states the need to go green or carbon neutral is more necessary to avoid greater destruction by cooling than by warming...
    Funny how quickly we flipped from AGW to AGC, while making him seem like a reasonable chap because you claim he wants to "go green" and "carbon neutral"... again, a cite to this would be nice.
    He appears to be ... valuing honesty and openness as well as have an understanding of basic logic and sound theorizing
    No, no, and no. He uses the same dishonest denial positions that are used elsewhere. Casting him as valuing honesty is itself dishonest.
    ...that seems to fit in with Bastardi's observations and predictions, on-going global cooling for the foreseeable future...
    And this is where you start running wildly, totally off the rails with jibberish.
    There is a recent finding that the mesosphere within the last couple of months was measured as having reached the lowest temperature ever recorded.
    This is a beauty. This actually is evidence of GHG induced global warming. The mesosphere is a vast area above the stratosphere. GHG theory predicts that CO2 will warm the troposphere and cool the stratosphere. Observations support that this is in fact what is happening. The mesosphere is only warmed by the stratosphere, so if the mesosphere is cooling, it is further evidence that the stratosphere is cooling, which is further evidence in support that greenhouse gases are warming the planet. Here's a tip: Don't get your climate science from meteorologists, whether they be named Bastardi or Watts. Trust climate scientists, not snake oil salesmen.
  12. Sphaerica, the data is in his video blogs that prove you mistaken a number of times in your characterization of Bastardi. So, cooling of the stratosphere and the mesosphere proves global warming. I don't doubt it. But does it prove that the climate will only continue linearly to warm? I understand Italy recorded an all time record low something like yesterday. I think Florida just recorded record lows for at least the lower half of the state. I'm not trusting any one, actually. I am attempting to look at the evidence myself and formulate an on-going subject to change opinion. Again, I suggest if you think that you KNOW exactly what is going to happen, whether or not it is your own opinion or taking the opinion of others, you are deluded.
  13. Tom Loeber, #85, Whoa, that's quite a great example of gish-gallop. The number of false statements, misinterpretations, innuendos, leaps of logic and unjustified conclusions, not to mention the subtle back-handed pleas to try to make yourself seem reasonable ("Hmmm, I see that the concept of it being natural is considered contemptible by some") are too numerous to take the time (and space!) to debunk. It's quite a collection. Your understanding of ice ages, glacial ice formation and the like is extremely weak. You need to study that a lot more before making your proclamations. When you get to this:
    I think you are just continuing with the misinformation.
    Wow. Just wow.
  14. Tom Loeber, #87,
    ...the data is in his video blogs that prove you mistaken a number of times in your characterization of Bastardi.
    I think not. As requested, please provide a cite rather than a vague reference to statements buried somewhere in his video blogs (which I promise you I will never waste my time watching).
    But does it prove that the climate will only continue linearly to warm?
    Strawman distraction. Other evidence proves warming. My statement merely proves that your reference to the mesosphere cooling as evidence of a coming cooling period is silly.
    I understand Italy recorded...
    Yes, yes, yes, and it still snows in the winter etc. etc. etc. This is all covered elsewhere and is evidence of and an argument for nothing. Global mean temperatures are rising. Anecdotal evidence of places and times with low temperatures are meaningless.
    I am attempting to look at the evidence myself ...
    No, you're not, your spreading a great amount of disinformation under the guise of scientific statements and (according to you) reputable sources. Little of what you've posted is true, but it looks just erudite enough to confuse the unwary.
    ...you are deluded.
    But at least I'm educated, I understand everything you wrote and every place that it wanders from merely false into laughably silly. My position, whether or not you think it is a delusion, is based on reason, science, observation, and understanding. You, and anyone who is reading your posts and nodding in agreement, would be well advised to hit the books. Reaching a false conclusion based on the best possible evidence and effort is one thing. Reaching a false conclusion because one refuses to learn, study, or reasonably try, or because one has a predetermined conclusion which they are desparate to support... that's self-delusion.
  15. Tom Loeber wrote : "I think the recent evidence that melting of the caps immediately preceeded major swings of the climate into major ice age conditions is another thing suggesting that warming leads to cooling." I'd be interested in reading about that. Got any references/links ?
  16. Sphaerica, all of that last post of yours appears to be an attempt to deride my character. You suggest that you wont look at Bastardi's presentation of satellite data and yet you claim to know his stance exactly.
  17. Tom, "So, cooling of the stratosphere and the mesosphere proves global warming". Proofs occur in mathematics, not science. This, however is clearly not the least of your confusion. 1) CO2 gets pulled out of the air by ocean aborption and rock weathering. Biomass doesn't have the capacity to draw down sufficient CO2 to cause an ice age. 2) more moisture in the air means more heat, because water vapor is a greenhouse gas. 3) More snow in Antarctica won't reflect more sunlight into space because the whole freakin' thing is already white! 4) Your repeated references to scientists and the goverment "spinning" and "spending" in favor of Milankovitch Cycles is really, really weak. The fact that you resort to making political statements ruins any credibility you may have had. 5). If Joe Bastardi has a serious analysis indicating major negative feedbacks, let him publish them in a peer-reviewed journal. His videos are assertions, nothing more. 6) "Do you agree that I don't agree with AGW"? What does that even mean?
  18. Tom, 91,
    all of that last post of yours appears to be an attempt to deride my character
    Not your character, I am deriding the quality of the information you post and the debate tactics that you use to present it.
    ...you wont look at Bastardi's presentation of satellite data...
    Something written, yes. Video blogs, no. If you make a claim, and someone requests a cite, you are obliged to comply or else your statement must be dismissed as unsupported by evidence. So far, several people have asked you for cites, and you have not complied once.
    ...you claim to know his stance exactly.
    I never made any such claim. He is a well known AGW denier. I've seen any number of false and misleading statements by him. I have never seen a truthful or well reasoned statement by him. There are any number of people who have achieved the status of untrustworthy in the subject of climate science, and for me he's one of them. I will not waste my time looking at his claims until he succeeds in publishing a paper in a peer reviewed journal. Until then, it's just another guy coming up with crazy theories based on an incomplete and incoherent background in science. But so far, what you've presented is that you like his statements, and to you they seem true, so everyone else should accept that. My position is that you have presented only (1) his claims and (2) false statements, or (3) true statements which either fail to actually support his position or else simply confuse the reader. You're going to have to do better than this if you want to succeed in making a valid point.
  19. Hi JMurphy. "We constrain this jump to have occurred 121,000 years ago and conclude it supports an episode of ice-sheet instability during the terminal phase of the last interglacial period."
  20. Tom, Your link is to a newspaper article, not a scientific publication. More importantly, the article is regarding rapid sea level rise during the previous interglacial. It says nothing about melting ice caps initiating an ice age. Did you even bother to read it?
  21. Tom, 94, You have completely misunderstood this quote from that article, and the context of the article.
    "We constrain this jump to have occurred 121,000 years ago and conclude it supports an episode of ice-sheet instability during the terminal phase of the last interglacial period."
    "The terminal phase" is the period immediately following a glacial period, i.e. a period where temperatures suddenly and abruptly warm, taking the planet out of (not into) a glacial period. "Terminal" refers to the end of the glacial period, not the end of the interglacial period. The article is discussing the rapid and large sea level changes which can occur during those termination events. That is completely the opposite of your interpretation:
    "I think the recent evidence that melting of the caps immediately preceeded major swings of the climate into major ice age conditions is another thing suggesting that warming leads to cooling."
  22. The article is reporting of a scientific publication. Even the publication itself is an article. "Did you even bother to read it? Trueofvoice, could you lay off of the ad hominem please? I don't think it adds to your credibility.
    Response: [Daniel Bailey] A simple question does not constitute an ad hominem. If you think it does, you should perhaps look the phrase up.
  23. Sphaerica "during the terminal phase of the last interglacial period." You interpret that to not mean what it says?
  24. Tom, So you didn't read it. Good to know. You still haven't responded to the fact at hand: you linked to an article which you claimed provided evidence of polar ice melt being linked to rapid cooling, when in actuality the article discussed melting due to warming during the previous interglacial. Your own link stands in complete contradiction to your assertion. At this point I can no longer tell if you simply don't understand the science, or are being deliberately obtuse.
  25. Tom, Sphaerica knows exaxtly what he's talking about, your own comprehension is what is in question. An interglacial is a period during an ice age in which ice does not dominate the planet. This means the interglacial itself is a "terminal phase" of glacial dominance. You don't understand ice ages, you don't understand the terminology and you seem to be unaware of the difference between a newspaper and a scientific publication. Grab a copy of "The Physics of Glaciers", read it, then come back and we can discuss your difficulties.
    Response: [muoncounter] This thread is about cold weather as an aspect of or objection to global warming. Further discussion of ice ages belongs on We're heading into an ice age.

Prev  1  2  3  4  5  Next

Post a Comment

Political, off-topic or ad hominem comments will be deleted. Comments Policy...

You need to be logged in to post a comment. Login via the left margin or if you're new, register here.

Link to this page



The Consensus Project Website

THE ESCALATOR

(free to republish)


© Copyright 2022 John Cook
Home | Translations | About Us | Privacy | Contact Us