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There are only a few topics that seem less obvious but more hotly debated than climate change. It's here, it's happening, it's caused by humanity, and it is one of the largest problems humanity will ever face. But I believe we will face it, and we'll face it with the desperate ingenuity and bravado with which we have faced our entire history on this planet. And we will survive it, as long as we can finally freaking agree that "it" isn't a conspiracy theory made up to annoy the rich and powerful.

So, as I know this is a hotly debated subject, this video has sources...

CO2 greatly amplifies warming after it is initiated: http://www.skepticalscience.com/co2-lags-temperature-intermediate.htm

After 1975 there was little connection between solar activity and the earth's temperature: http://www.mps.mpg.de/dokumente/publikationen/solanki/c153.pdf

Indeed, if it were the sun, we should be cooling: http://rspa.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/464/2094/1387.abstract

Detailed look at how the urban heat island affect is removed from climate science data: http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2001/2001_Hansen_etal.pdf

Satellite measurements show warming trends as well as surface measurements: http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/Image:Satellite_Temperatures.png

Ice core reconstructions show the same thing: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/pollack.html

The earth is not cooling: http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2011/2011GL048794.shtml

The myth of the 70's Cooling Consensus: http://ams.confex.com/ams/pdfpapers/131047.pdf

Loss of Antarctic Land Ice: http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1228102

Melting land ice results in increase in sea ice: http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v6/n5/full/ngeo1767.html

For a great resource on this stuff: http://www.skepticalscience.com/
Good morning John, I've got a problem: I will still be alive in 2060, probably. That's when the population of the earth will probably peak at around 10 billion people, and also it's probably when we're going to start feeling the really significant effects of global climate change. That's not a problem that's going to be solved in the next fifty years, it's going to be a problem when I die, and when you die, and lots of other problems will remain unsolved

And that's okay, like, no one has ever died having solved all the problems. It was okay for them, it'll be okay for us. But that doesn't mean that there isn't a path that we should be walking down to solve the problems eventually. But I feel like before we can start walking down that path we have to sort of agree that there is a problem, which we apparently haven't done yet.

So here are the top 10 arguments people use to say global warming either isn't a thing or isn't caused by humans and my responses to them:

'Climate change is natural, it's happened before.'
Yes, the climate has changed in the past, often due to an increase in the carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere, which is actually a pretty clear indication that an increase in carbon-dioxide will increase temperatures.

'But Hank, CO2 concentrations only increase because temperatures increase - not the other way around.'
It is true that many warming events began without carbon dioxide levels increasing first. However, once the warming began, CO2 levels increased, greatly amplifying the warming. Of the warming events we have record for, 90% of the warming took place after the C02 levels increased.

'It's just that the sun's been getting hotter'
No...

'The data these scientists are using are wrong because they put their thermometers in cities, where there's heat sources and asphalt to heat everything up.'
The heating of the planet shows up when you look at weather stations in cities or in rural areas; it shows up when you look at satellite data or thermometers that are sunk deep in the ocean. It's everywhere - scientist are not stupid.

'The earth is actually cooling.'
No-I mean-it's not-even-it's not, at all. 2000-2010 was the hottest decade ever, ever. On record.

'But it's not warming up as fast.'
If you pick the years from 2009 to now, the trend line is indeed not as steep. But the climate doesn't change on the scale of years, that's like looking at a picture made of 5 pixels and trying to figure out what it is. It's just not going to be very clear. That's why we look at decades and centuries of data.
'They predicted an ice age in the 70's...'
A small research team did say that, and the news media talked about it for about two weeks. But the vast majority of peer reviewed science during the 70's said that the climate was warming. Because of, you guessed it, carbon dioxide emissions.

'You're just cherry picking the data that support your hypothesis.'
Data supporting global warming comes from like every branch of science, whether it's biology with animals ranging further north, or epidemiology with disease ranges spreading, or agriculture, with yields increasing in temperate areas. Increased water temperature, decreased snowfall, earlier snow-melt, rising sea levels.

'But Antarctica has more ice now than it used to.'
No, but interestingly it does have more sea ice than it used to. There's land ice, the ice that exists on the land of Antarctica, which is a continent, and then there's sea ice, which, for the most part, forms in the winter and melts in the summer. The land ice , the glaciers, is what you have to worry about, and that is melting at an alarming rate. Now why there is more sea ice in Antarctica now than there has been previously is an interesting question; one that has been studied, and here's a quick description, you can pause the video to read it.

'Fossil fuels, they're great.'
On this point, I agree with you. I think that fossil fuels are miraculous. They are a precious resource. I'm not gonna rag on anyone who works hard providing inexpensive energy and the freedom and happiness that it provides. But there are costs to burning fossil fuels. So we have to use them less, by choice, and through hard work. We have to develop alternatives, we have to be more efficient, and we have to change the way that we live our lives.

But as long as we agree that there is a problem I have complete faith in humaity's ability to solve it, because solving problems is what we do best. John, I'll see you on Tuesday.