Seven Global Warming Misconceptions

ANSWER: "No. A 'recovery' of climate is not a scientific concept, since the climate does not respond like a pendulum that swings back after it was pushed in one direction. Rather, the climate responds like a pot of boiling water on the stove: it can only get warmer if you add heat." The study explains why Earth's current rapid warming is not a natural "recovery." (p. 48)

QUESTION: "Didn't CO2 rise after the warming that ended ice ages, thus showing that the melting of the ice ages -- and thus all global warming -- was not from CO2?

ANSWER: That's precisely why scientists are so worried, the report's authors explain. They know that the highly regular ice ages are caused primarily not by CO2 increases and decreases in the atmosphere but by well known wobbles in the earth's rotation -- over tens of thousands of years. What's so frightening to them is that after one of the regular warming periods begins, they can see (in air bubbles trapped in glaciers from those past times) that CO2 starts increasing, and they know that this is because of the warming and thawing of vast natural stores of carbon dioxide in the oceans -- as well as in the frozen or frigid earth of the northern tundra. Since CO2 is also a greenhouse gas -- a warming agent -- it then warms the earth even further, thawing out even more gas. The problem is that today, humankind is putting enormous amounts of the same gas in the air by burning fossil fuels and deforestation, warming the planet even further, thus thawing out even more natural stores of greenhouse gas in what they call a feedback loop. This process warms the earth even more, thawing out even more CO2. It is driving the temperature towards levels dangerous for civilization, they say. (p. 49)

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