June 18, 2013
If You’re Under 35, You’ve Never Experienced ‘Normal’ Earth Climate
Posted on Aug 2, 2011
Physical scientist Robert Grumbine crunches some numbers to determine that “the last time the global mean was below the climate normal was March1976.” Basically Grumbine is looking for “normal” climate, and he sees things diverging after 1940. So tell us, old-timers, what was it like before the planet started melting?
Some caveats are in order: First, this scientist, ever cautious, ends his blog post by saying, “assuming, of course, that I didn’t make a mistake somewhere.” Nice one, Grumbles. You can check his data if you like, and he would like you to. Frankly, the math is beyond this blogger, who found Grumbine’s claim that his blog is written “to be inclusive of students in middle school and jr. high” either wanting or depressing.
Also, what Grumbine is saying is something much more complicated than “it’s getting hotter.” “Normal” is a product of this scientist’s own analysis, based on “a common description of climate,” which is “sometimes it’s warmer and sometimes it’s cooler, but it all averages out in the end.” And the last time that description of climate was true was a long time ago.
Here’s another disturbing quote from the same work: “If you’re younger than 26, you have never seen a month where the global mean was as cold as the 161 year average.”
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