Global Warming - How to Tell If It's Real

Hanh mitakuyapi. Recently, I have seen many letters to editors and posts on various Internet boards asking for proof that global warming is real. To me, the definitive proof of the reality - and awe-inspiring danger - of global warming is photographic. Specifically, satellite photos of the polar ice caps. 

Moreover, because the 'proof' is photographic, it is irrefutable. Before any of you start hollering about the possibility that photographs are tampered with, let's ask, "how would it profit anyone to tamper with satellite photos?" The answer is, "It wouldn't". Hechetu ye - End of discussion. That one, at least.

If you go to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency site, www.noaa.gov, you can click on "polar ice cap photos" in the menu. There you will see such things as the January 2008 photos of the northern polar ice cap, and compare them to January photos going back quite a number of years - and you will see that in January 2008, there was 40 miles of open water where in the very recent past, there was 40 miles of polar ice pack.  The polar ice pack is where polar bears hunt seals.  Polar bears are powerful swimmers, but no one can routinely swim 40 miles for a meal.

The polar ice pack photos will prove that over time, the polar ice pack has been shrinking.  This is the most basic proof of global warming, and the most un-nerving.  If it's warm enough for the sea water to not freeze at the poles, how much warmer must it be south of there?  The average winter temperature at the poles is ordinarily in the -50F range - without wind and associated wind chill factor. Sea water freezes below the +32F we are used to down here in the lower 48 states, but not all that much.

Still, even if sea water froze at +32F like fresh water, the rise in temperature from -50F to +32F is a whopping 82 degrees Fahrenheit!!  Anyone who wants more proof than that is a fool and a greedy self-centered arrogant one at that.  Hechetu ye.  End of discussion.

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2 Comments

  • Carel Two-Eagle

    Hanh Marianne. There is no question that humans are a major factor in causing global warming. 6.5+ billion of anything, but especially humans, is statistically and numerically overwhelmingly on the "causative" side of the equation.
    Humans may not be the only factor, but there is no doubt of their significance. In addition to the sheer number of humans, there are their activities, which are too many to list here.
    The geologic record of our Holy Mother the Earth shows that every 28,000 years, give or take a very few, the earth goes through some major upheaval. We're entering such a period now, but 28,000 years ago, there were a few hundred thousand humans, and their contribution was insignificant compared to such phenomena as tectonic plate movement, geothermal activity, etc. Today is a hugely different situation.
    The net result is going to be massive die-offs of some species, humans among them. To me, a bigger question is, "how long will this 28,000-year periodic episode last?" Whether or not any one of us will survive this upheaval is not as relevant as what we will have to deal with while going through it and what we will have to deal with once we have passed through the time period of the episode. It will be ugly, I have no doubt. If nothing else, massive die-offs of humans will result in vultures getting too fat to fly, since there won't be enough space to bury the bodies, or enough people to dig graves other than mass graves.
    What galls me is that humans tout themselves as being "the animals that think". If people really think - or had thought ahead of time - we wouldn't be facing this die-off mess now. And I have no doubt we are.

  • Marianne Bellotti

    For most people asking for proof the question is not "Does Global Warming exist?" so much as it is "Are we causing it?" which is a much harder question to answer.