An unusual ENSO (El Niño Southern Oscillation) event a few years ago created what some thought was a “pause” in global warming between 1998 and 2014. Some measures of average global temperatures seemed not to increase as rapidly as they had in the past decade or two. Climate deniers were quick to seize upon this as evidence that global warming and global climate change were not real.
They were wrong. In the first place, the so-called pause was not a pause, but a slight leveling off of the rate of increase. Temperatures continued to increase, but according to some measurements, not quite as fast.
In the second place, new data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) suggest that the leveling off was due to measurement error.
The error source, according to a NOAA paper, published in Science in 2016 was underestimation of modeling. The temperature changes were revised upward. Naturally, skeptics saw this as data manipulation. It was not.
The new data suggest that the overall warming during the latter part of the 20th century was consistent with rates of warming demonstrated in the past, and was consistent with theories of anthropogenic (human-caused) warming.
This new information is not just theory, but is justified and backed-up by multiple data-sets from “real” monitoring.
There are still those who deny global climate change and the anthropogenic component of that change, and who would place their own profits and prestige (and greed) above science and reality. It’s unfortunate that one of those is about to be sworn in as president of the US, and that his cabinet is filled with those of like mind.
References: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/01/04/noaa-challenged-the-global-warming-pause-now-new-research-says-the-agency-was-right/?utm_term=.696a6427c494 [2017-01-06]
Registered Curmudgeon, scientist, skeptic, humanist, and writer.