Dumping More Cold Water on Global Warming. (Nation in Brief)

By Elvin, John | Insight on the News, April 29, 2003 | Go to article overview

Dumping More Cold Water on Global Warming. (Nation in Brief)


Elvin, John, Insight on the News


If there isn't such a place already, there ought to be a Center for the Study of Studies. It seems from just a casual perusal of specialized Websites that there must be a hundred or so studies released each day that appear to have some bearing on human life. As often as not, one study contradicts another, and you begin to suspect over time that studies reveal nothing more than the researcher's expectations.

There are people who make a living--and a decent one, no doubt--gathering up and analyzing studies in a particular field. At the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Mass., for instance, a group of researchers looked into climate studies for the last thousand or so years to get a fix on the century just past. They looked at 240 studies, representing the work of thousands of scientists.

From this formidable array of information, Harvard-Smithsonian researchers concluded that the last century was not so hot. The world was generally warmer in the 500 years between 800 A.D. to 1300 A.D. than it was in the last century.

Hello? Does this mean that the thousands of global-warming scare stories were bunk, and all the resultant legislation is just another of society's self-inflicted headaches? Judge for yourself: After 1300, the world generally got colder, a cycle that ended about 1900. …

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