Infographic on where global warming is going

Scott Mandia has written an excellent article explaining climate sensitivity, clearing up a common misconception about climate change. The evidence indicates that a doubling of CO2 levels will cause 3°C warming. However, this doesn't mean that the moment CO2 levels reach 560 parts per million (doubling from the preindustrial 280 parts per million), that global temperatures will at that moment be 3°C warmer than preindustrial temperatures. Most of the heat is going into the ocean. Just as it takes time for a cup of coffee to release heat into the air, so to it takes time for the ocean to release its heat into the atmosphere.

Scott uses a Skeptical Science infographic Where is global warming going?, to illustrate that over 90% of global warming is going into the oceans. This graphic seems to have been popular - the NOAA used it in their 2009 State of the Climate Report (without attribution but who's counting?  :-)

So I figure I might as well add this to our list of Climate Graphics. As with all the other graphics, this one is under a Creative Commons licence so everyone is free to use the graphic in any non-commercial use (or for commercial use, just contact me first). To get hold of the different file formats available, go to the Where Is Global Warming Going? infographic (or use the links below):

You are welcome to reuse these graphics in any non-commercial use with attribution. Skeptical Science is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. For commercial use, please contact me.

Posted by John Cook on Thursday, 20 January, 2011

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