Saturday, November 27, 2010

That's one way to do it, I suppose

Despite what the deniers will try to tell us, it is a fact.  Global temperatures have been higher in the past decade than they have been before.  Still, this rate has shown recent signs of slowing down, causing climate change deniers to hop up and down while squealing, "See?  See?"  
Turns out there may be a reason for that and it's not good.  (DISCLAIMER: the correspondent in that linked article ain't the greatest.  Just sayin'.)  An enormous amount of air pollution, especially over Asia where coal-burning power plants are popping up everywhere and there is no restriction on aerosol use, is reflecting sunlight and thus decreasing surface land temperature. 

Do not, however, take this slowing down to mean that global climate change is no longer a big deal.  The temperatures are still going up. They are just doing so at a slower rate than before.  And tossing pollutants into the air may be what is doing it.  It's a bit like smoking a cigarette to deal with chronic anxiety, but there you are.  Really, I may have written this before but I am going to write it again.  It is beyond me how many, aside from wealthy industrialists, can argue that humanity has had no hand in shifting global climate.  Exhausts of multiple types going into the atmosphere.  Cause.  Effect.
Bruce Sterling is right.  We're going to live long enough to see climate change deniers in environmental refugee camps.

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