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November 03, 2003

Getting Warmer

The Sun has been more active since 1940 than in the previous 100 years.

Which of course has nothing to do with global warming! Anyone with any sense knows that when it comes to Earth, humans have a much greater effect on the planet than does the star that birthed it. Which is why we have to quit eating beef right now!

The news of yet another extra-terrestrial tie to climate change has got to be depressing news to the editorial board at New Scientist, whose opinion on global warming can at best be described as "fixed."

We humans are about as subtle as the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs. Acid rain and global warming show that we hold immense power over life on Earth, yet we wield it indiscriminately.

Of course, just because one gets a bit of bad news doesn't mean that one can't try to spin it away.

The link between the Sun's magnetic activity and the Earth's climate is, however, unclear.

Only if you don't bother to look.

Increased activity equals increased energy. The higher the energy output, the more heat there is. If that's unclear, try rubbing a finger against the palm of your other hand for a minute or two.

There's also a good argument that sunspot activity is on the wane, and with it, global warming. The report has been around for almost a month, not that one would realize this from perusing the pages of the New Scientist, which, like most major media, prefers publishing scary stories about the consequences of global warming to stories about studies that undermine the accepted wisdom. Since leavening the latter with a dig or two at the Bush administration is much harder to do, I wouldn't expect the situation to change anytime soon.

Posted by Bigwig at November 3, 2003 04:56 PM | TrackBack
Postscript:
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Comments

Have you been looking at Mars, Bigwig? It's big and fat in the south in the pm. Show it to Ngnat. My little guy digs it. I don't think it will be this big and bright again in our lifetimes.

Posted by: Jim at November 3, 2003 11:04 PM

Um, by any chance is New Scientist published by Old PETA?

Just wondering.

Posted by: Blackavar at November 3, 2003 11:22 PM

The odd celebration of Mars is poignant, since another fact is that the polar ice caps on Mars are waning lockstep with those of Earth, meaning the melting ice on Earth is due to the sun too.

Posted by: Mike Matterson at November 6, 2003 05:01 AM
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