Regarding the Jan. 3 editorial “The weather vane points to trouble”: How quickly we forget. February 2015 was the fifth coldest, and the last two weeks the coldest, on record. Ten months later December 2015 was the warmest on record.
The point is, any given month’s weather is no more a “stark preview of what may be in store” for the future than any other.
The U.N.’s IPCC Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fifth Assessment Report AR5 projected, under its worst-case (i.e., least likely) scenario, that average temperatures by the end of the century might increase by between 5 and 8 degrees Fahrenheit. Worrying about temperatures in July averaging 10 degrees above normal is not just unlikely but cynical.
It is twice the low end and well above the high end of the worst-case IPCC projected temperature range.
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Perhaps newspaper editors should stick to the news and meteorologists to predicting tomorrow’s weather rather than raising specters of extreme temperatures beyond what our best climate scientists project.
Even the IPCC scientists with all their models struggle to explain the global warming hiatus of the last 18 years. The lead author of Chapter 9 of IPCC AR5 said the chances of having a hiatus the last 20 years are vanishingly small. They are just two short years away from having a lot of explaining to do.