My husband and I got in a huge fight this past weekend. In fact, it was the biggest fight, lasting several days (and is still sputtering along right now, although most of the fire is out) that we have had since we nearly broke up.
What was this fight over? Global warming.
It seems that several of the HAMS in his local group fancy themselves climatologists and are determined to make a myth of global warming and climate change. In fact, when DH first brought up some contradictory information to them regarding the evidence, they shot him down and directed him to several blogs and websites devoted to debunking them. He read them, was impressed by the ‘data’ and phoned me on my way home from work to insist I read this ‘new’ information. It really blew him away. When I refused and said I could pretty much guarantee the sites were funded, either directly or indirectly by big oil or other such groups he accused me of being closed minded…whence ensued the fight.
It took me literally 7 minutes of research on the internet to find the major funding groups for those sites (which I’m not naming by name because I refuse to drive ANY traffic to them) and lo and behold, there it was….ExxonMobile, Phillip Morris, RJ Reynolds, … you get the idea. One of the sites was a blog by a supposed meterologist whose major contention is that people are fudging temperatures in order to create the global warming myth. When I pointed out to DH that the graphs posted that supposedly contradict whatever evidence they are trying to debunk have no attributions for where the data was gathered, nor do they have any study information, and no baseline for understanding the graphs, he at first didn’t understand what I was saying. I also stated quite explicitly that those in his group wouldn’t care that their data was cherry picked and flawed just the same as the data they were supposedly refuting, and that they have a vested interest in debunking it due to the psychology of previous investment. No one wants to face the fact that they are personally responsible for the mess we’re in now, and no one wants to have less than they do now.
The next morning, on the morning net, he pointed out when the usual talk got started the fact that those sites were in fact funded by the above mentioned groups and was told he could not bring that up because it was bringing politics into it. So he was effectively shot down for pointing out that there might be corruption of their data the same as the stuff they were trying to debunk — for instance, the major item of discussion recently is the fact that supposedly the data in Gore’s movie, specifically the tree ring data, was cherry picked from only one tree. Now that might be so, but it doesn’t change the fact that other things pointed out in the movie, and the news from all over the world supports the idea that the climate is getting unstable as compared to previous millennia.
He did receive emails from the moderator of the group, and wrote back saying that if pointing out the funding sources was wrong, then they shouldn’t be using data from private websites or blogs, either, and stick only to govt published data. In response, he received an email back with info that suggested (again) that weather monitoring sites were corrupted by being placed at airports, in cities, in trash burn barrels, etc.
What the hell? I asked my husband. So, the fact that Sky Harbor Airport is a giant heat island in Phoenix due to the massive amount of blacktop, IS hotter than the surrounding area, doesn’t count? The fact that the heat ripples out in waves to the surrounding area and makes it hotter doesn’t matter? The fact that Phoenix itself is a giant heat island that you can feel until you get a good 15 miles outside of the city (where there is a DISTINCT ambient temperature drop, quite abruptly) doesn’t matter? Really? And no one on this net thinks this doesn’t affect local weather patterns, just like forest fires do when they get to a certain size? And that doesn’t in turn affect larger areas of weather? The fact that we haven’t had a 10 year flood in about 15 years doesn’t matter? The fact that our own area used to get a lot more rain when Phoenix metro area was smaller doesn’t matter? Really? Because one of the weather stations is at the airport it’s spurious data? Even though the effects are real and verifiable by anyone especially on a summer day?
I also keep pointing out that people in his group are conflating global warming with climate change. They have some similarities, but they are NOT the same. The terms are NOT interchangeable. Yet every time they bring up climate change, the data they refer to is dedicated to debunking global warming. Yes, parts of the world are getting hotter…and some are getting colder. Most are getting extremes in both directions with little of the relative stability in weather patterns one could count on as in times past. It doesn’t take a climatologist to read stories worldwide to see this pattern starting to emerge. DH did also bring this up on the net and was told flatly it didn’t matter because they were only coincidences, not data. Eh??? Yes, singly, they are coincidences…but together they add up to something more, as I pointed out.
I guess I pay closer attention because I view my garden as one of my major sources of food, not just a hobby. It means more to me what the weather is, because it affects my crops. It means more to me because I have to know what the weather is going to probably be like in days and weeks to come so I can plan my rotations and future crops. If there is no stability in the weather (and there hasn’t been in a while) I can’t plan, my plants can’t grow well, and my harvest suffers as a result.
What it comes down to I guess is that for me, as I keep telling Mr. Tin foil, is that I only need to look out my window to see there’s a problem. That’s all that matters to me. I have no need, nor desire, to convince those that are determined not to be convinced (or those who say they’re still in doubt like Mr. TF) because my garden gives me all the proof I need.
In addition, my garden is going to be one of my primary food sources, if my fears regarding our economy come to pass. Our agriculture is completely dependent on fossil fuels, easy credit, and government subsidies. If our economy slides down any further, and I see no reason to believe it won’t, there are going to be supply interruptions, lack of credit for farmers, increased costs, and so on. Climate change is only a part of the larger picture.