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Earth Space Science

Study Says Cosmic Rays Do Not Explain Global Warming 656

Posted by timothy
from the but-millions-of-illuminaria-do dept.
flock2000 writes "A new study conducted by Norweigan researchers finds (again) that changes in cosmic rays most likely do not contribute to climate change. Previously, other researchers have claimed to have found a link between cosmic rays and surface temperatures."
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Study Says Cosmic Rays Do Not Explain Global Warming

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  • by COMON$ (806135) * on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:27PM (#26163669) Journal
    Everyone knows global warming is caused by His Noodliness hugging the earth even closer.
    • by jellomizer (103300) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:30PM (#26163705)

      But there has recently been a rise in piracy.

    • by pitchpipe (708843)
      Avast Matey, it might be that he is warming us up for another act of Intelligent Design!
    • by wclacy (870064) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:09PM (#26164259)

      I wish Global warming was more than just a fairy tale. I am sick and tired of shoveling snow. Last winter was the coldest winter in a long time. This winter is looking about the same. We have had about 2 feet of snow in the last 3 days.

      • Re:Common Sense (Score:5, Insightful)

        by bunratty (545641) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:17PM (#26164369)

        There will still be cold winters and warm summers no matter whether the mean global temperature is rising or falling. The variation from year to year swamps the slow, gradual rise in temperatures.

        Think of the stock market. After one or two days of going up, we don't suddenly say the bear market is over. Once again, it's long-term change we're looking for, and you're noticing short-term change.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        I wish Global warming was more than just a fairy tale. I am sick and tired of shoveling snow. Last winter was the coldest winter in a long time. This winter is looking about the same. We have had about 2 feet of snow in the last 3 days.

        Global warming -> Melting polar ice -> New source of fresh water in the ocean -> Golf stream cuts east earlier -> Colder coasts in US North East / Warmer Coasts in Greenland -> People in Northern US suffering colder winters -> People misunderstanding that gl

  • by genner (694963) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:28PM (#26163677)
    Nothing but lies from the people making money off cosmic rays.
    • Correlation is not explanation.

      • by philspear (1142299) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:37PM (#26163815)

        Correlation is not causa... wait... huh?

        Anyway I think the fortune cookie logic here is, as usual, misapplied.

        FTA

        This result is in line with most other research in the field. As far as Kristjansson knows, no studies have proved a correlation between reduced cosmic rays and reduced cloud formation.

        They're not saying "A happens with B, therefore A causes B." They're saying "A does not happen with B."

        I guess the converse is possibly true, that lack of correlation does not indicate lack of causation per se. Didn't read if there was a possibility of a non-correlating causation, or maybe if I did, I don't have enough of a background in atmospheric science to realize it.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Chris Burke (6130)

          I guess the converse is possibly true, that lack of correlation does not indicate lack of causation per se.

          Well, yes, actually, absence of correlation implies the absence of causation. At least via the method you are examining for correlation. Correlation is not causation, but it is a prerequisite of causation. If you did a study where people smoked a cigarette and then were screened for lung cancer, you would find no correlation and thus correctly conclude that smoking a cigarette does not cause lung c

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by enharmonix (988983)

          I guess the converse is possibly true, that lack of correlation does not indicate lack of causation per se.

          Actually lack of correlation is logically stronger than actual correlation. I'm going to simplify this a little bit, but it should stand. Let H = "Fewer cosmic rays causes fewer clouds." That's our hypothesis. Let O = "In periods where fewer cosmic rays are present, we would expect to observe fewer clouds." That's our expected observation. The statement H->O (H implies O) is TRUE: it literally states if fewer cosmic rays causes fewer clouds, then when we have a decline in cosmic rays we expect to see fe

  • Oh yeah? (Score:3, Funny)

    by dk90406 (797452) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:28PM (#26163685)
    What about the Human Torch from Fantastic Four. He is causing it all, you know...
  • Mooo (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I blame the cows. Farting around the country side doing nuttin' but to make us sweaty and fat.

  • So? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Glock27 (446276) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:35PM (#26163775)
    It's fine that cosmic rays aren't correlated with cloud formation, however it's clear that cooling is strongly correlated with low sunspot activity.

    So, even if this is not the mechanism, it changes very little. We're still in solar minimum, instead of a peak that was originally predicted for 2006. Not surprisingly, the global climate is also in a cooling trend.

    Talk about inconvenient...

    • Re: (Score:2, Redundant)

      by samkass (174571)

      Not surprisingly, the global climate is also in a cooling trend.

      And piracy is up...

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        You're right, there is no causal link between the giant ball of fire and the temperature on earth.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      What's inconvenient is that despite a global cooling it's still one of the hottest years on record. It's only cool relative to 2000.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by crmarvin42 (652893)
        I keep seeing the year 2000 trotted out as some artificial dividing line. Please don't tell me that all of the global warming data is based on a data set with only 9 data points!
    • Re:So? (Score:5, Informative)

      by asynchronous13 (615600) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @05:12PM (#26165263)

      Not surprisingly, the global climate is also in a cooling trend.

      Needs citation.
      Global Temperature Land Ocean Index? -- Increasing [nasa.gov]
      Global Temperature (meteorological stations)? -- Increasing. [nasa.gov]
      Annual Mean Temperature Change for Three Latitude Bands? -- Slight dip for low latitudes, but mostly increasing [nasa.gov]
      Annual Mean Temperature Change for Hemispheres? -- You guessed, it, increasing. [nasa.gov]
      Global Monthly Mean Surface Temperature Change? -- All positive (thus, increasing) [nasa.gov]
      Annual Mean Temperature Change in the United States? -- Shocking! - also increasing! [nasa.gov]
      Seasonal Mean Temperature Change? -- Don't let the dip fool you, just means it is warming less rapidly [nasa.gov]

      Perhaps you heard that 2008 is the coolest year since 2000? Well that's true. 2008 has the coolest temperatures of the past 8 years. But guess what? It's the 9th warmest year on record (since 1880). I'd wait for a few more data points before claiming a global cooling trend.

      Talk about inconvenient...

      Indeed.

  • by bizitch (546406) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:35PM (#26163787) Homepage

    Snowing today in Malibu, New Orleans and Vegas

    Then of course there are these heretics

    http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Minority.Blogs&ContentRecord_id=2158072e-802a-23ad-45f0-274616db87e6 [senate.gov]

    "I am a skeptic Global warming has become a new religion." - Nobel Prize Winner for Physics, Ivar Giaever.

    "Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receiving any funding, I can speak quite frankly..As a scientist I remain skeptical." - Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to receive a PhD in meteorology and formerly of NASA who has authored more than 190 studies and has been called "among the most preeminent scientists of the last 100 years."

    Warming fears are the "worst scientific scandal in the history.When people come to know what the truth is, they will feel deceived by science and scientists." - UN IPCC Japanese Scientist Dr. Kiminori Itoh, an award-winning PhD environmental physical chemist.

    "The IPCC has actually become a closed circuit; it doesn't listen to others. It doesn't have open minds. I am really amazed that the Nobel Peace Prize has been given on scientifically incorrect conclusions by people who are not geologists," - Indian geologist Dr. Arun D. Ahluwalia at Punjab University and a board member of the UN-supported International Year of the Planet.

    "The models and forecasts of the UN IPCC "are incorrect because they only are based on mathematical models and presented results at scenarios that do not include, for example, solar activity." - Victor Manuel Velasco Herrera, a researcher at the Institute of Geophysics of the National Autonomous University of Mexico

    "It is a blatant lie put forth in the media that makes it seem there is only a fringe of scientists who don't buy into anthropogenic global warming." - U.S Government Atmospheric Scientist Stanley B. Goldenberg of the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA.

    "Even doubling or tripling the amount of carbon dioxide will virtually have little impact, as water vapour and water condensed on particles as clouds dominate the worldwide scene and always will.". Geoffrey G. Duffy, a professor in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering of the University of Auckland, NZ.

    "After reading [UN IPCC chairman] Pachauri's asinine comment [comparing skeptics to] Flat Earthers, it's hard to remain quiet." - Climate statistician Dr. William M. Briggs, who specializes in the statistics of forecast evaluation, serves on the American Meteorological Society's Probability and Statistics Committee and is an Associate Editor of Monthly Weather Review.

    "For how many years must the planet cool before we begin to understand that the planet is not warming? For how many years must cooling go on?" - Geologist Dr. David Gee the chairman of the science committee of the 2008 International Geological Congress who has authored 130 plus peer reviewed papers, and is currently at Uppsala University in Sweden.

    "Gore prompted me to start delving into the science again and I quickly found myself solidly in the skeptic camp.Climate models can at best be useful for explaining climate changes after the fact." - Meteorologist Hajo Smit of Holland, who reversed his belief in man-made warming to become a skeptic, is a former member of the Dutch UN IPCC committee.

    "Many [scientists] are now searching for a way to back out quietly (from promoting warming fears), without having their professional careers ruined." - Atmospheric physicist James A. Peden, formerly of the Space Research and Coordination Center in Pittsburgh.

    "Creating an ideology pegged to carbon dioxide is a dangerous nonsense.The present alarm on climate change is an instrument of social control, a pretext for major businesses and political battle. It became an ideology, which is concerning." - Environmental Scientist Professor Delgado Domingos of P

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by FauxPasIII (75900)

      Perhaps you can help me with something I genuinely don't understand. Why is it that there is such a passionate movement for wanting more pollution, more shitty water, more shitty air, more shitty soil? Even if you don't agree with the science that shows global warming is manmade, why not work to clean up the environment anyway? I don't understand what motivates you.

      • by Strep (956749) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:07PM (#26164223)
        Name this passionate movement. No one said that making "things more shitty" is good. All that's being said is that increased CO2 is not necessarily a bad thing and that CO2 is not a pollutant.
      • by Neon Aardvark (967388) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:10PM (#26164273) Homepage
        Plants (and therefore most life by weight) don't seem to view C02 as a "shitty pollution". Actual, precisely the opposite.
      • by leereyno (32197) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:22PM (#26164441) Homepage Journal

        I really don't understand what motivates you to lie and construct straw man arguments. Is intellectual honesty and integrity so difficult?

        A disbelief in anthropogenic planetary warming is not an implied argument for the destruction of the environment.

        "Exactly when did you stop beating your wife?"

      • by FooGoo (98336) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:23PM (#26164473)

        It's not a passionate movement for more pollution... It's a passionate movement against government social experimentation/intervention under the guise of science. You'll find that most people who support the manmade global warming assumption use it to justify a whole host of government intrusion into our lives from punitive taxation to telling you what kind of car you should drive (hybrid), to what kind of coffee you should drink (organic, fair trade). These are personal social issues and not areas for government mandates.

        If I where a scientist I would be very upset that the credibility of my profession was being undermined by people with political agendas. Pretty soon scientists will have the same level of credibility as the 4 out of 5 dentists or recommend Crest.

        I believe that there are 3 great professionals that can truly benefit humanity. The statesman, the religious leader, and the scientist. We've already witnessed the decline of the first two so I guess it the scientists turn.

        • by FauxPasIII (75900) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:34PM (#26164649)

          > It's not a passionate movement for more pollution... It's a passionate movement against
          > government social experimentation/intervention under the guise of science.

          I realize that you and the broader movement for denying human-caused global are not pro-pollution, but those are the bedfellows you're lying down with. The net result of your movement is more pollution and more environmental degradation. I just keep hoping that well-intentioned people would be willing to table the academic questions about what's causing global warming until we've achieved the goals I think we mostly agree on; to stop crapping up our planet.

          • by FooGoo (98336) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:52PM (#26164919)

            Both sides have their crackpots and their extremes lead to undesirable results. But we shouldn't just accept the claims of global warming promoters just because we might like the end result. Flawed science is still flawed even if the result may be something that makes us feel good.

            The truth is other than a few isolated cases and in some third world countries the planet is pretty nice. The third world just lacks the will and infrastructure to keep it clean. I've experienced the pollution in India, the smog, in China, and flooding in the Philippines because trash clogs the drainage. These are not global warming problems.

            I've seen television campaigns in the Philippines saying that the flooding is cause more powerful storms do to global warming so it's something they can't do anything about. While the truth is if they stopped littering in the streets the drainage wouldn't get clogged and the streets wouldn't be flooded.

            These are social/cultural problems. Fixing them will not affect global warming one way or the other but they will improve peoples lives.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by superdave80 (1226592)

            I realize that you and the broader movement for denying human-caused global are not pro-pollution, but those are the bedfellows you're lying down with.

            So what if there are polluters that want to pollute more? We already have lots of environmental regulations in place to reduce pollution, and those won't go away just because we don't believe in global warming. CO2 is not pollution. What the hell do you think all those plants and trees are surviving on?

            The net result of your movement is more pollution and more environmental degradation.

            And I could just as easily say that the net result of your movement will be the tanking of the world economy.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by dasunt (249686)

            I realize that you and the broader movement for denying human-caused global are not pro-pollution, but those are the bedfellows you're lying down with. The net result of your movement is more pollution and more environmental degradation. I just keep hoping that well-intentioned people would be willing to table the academic questions about what's causing global warming until we've achieved the goals I think we mostly agree on; to stop crapping up our planet.

            That's why I'm against people who criticize the wa

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by ljw1004 (764174)

        Bjorn Lomberg (author, "the skeptical environmentalist") made this argument:

        We have $1 today. We can spend it now to clean up the environment. Or we can invest it now, watch it turn into $50 in a century, and of that use $5 to clean up the environment at that time. It'll be more expensive, naturally, but he thinks that economies grow faster than do environmental burdens.

        My instinct is that he's flat out wrong.

    • by fracai (796392) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:58PM (#26164091)

      Some real nice attempts at "Argument from Authority" there.

      So far it seems that the scientific consensus is that warming is real and likely to be contributed towards by human activity.

      My favorite of your quotes is, "Many [scientists] are now searching for a way to back out quietly (from promoting warming fears), without having their professional careers ruined."
      No real scientist needs to figure out how to do that. They would just say, "Ya know? I looked at the data again, existing and new, and I've changed my evaluation because of the following points: ...". And that's that. Anyone who's afraid to say "I was wrong" isn't a good scientist, or a scientist at all.

      All I see in those quotes are buzzwords and alarmist phrasing targeted at grabbing headlines. There may be just as much of that on the other side as well, but you'll need to do better than a list of quotes to convince anyone, or me anyway.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Bryansix (761547)
        Your post does not correlate with reality. The reality is that is is not career suicide to denounce man made global warming.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by daver00 (1336845)

        The idea of a scientific consensus concerns me to no end. Science is about proving theories wrong, you can't prove a theory correct you can only demonstrate that a given theory is better than another theory. If everybody agrees then nobody is out trying to prove the current theory wrong, and that is simply not science, its belief.

    • by BlackSabbath (118110) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:17PM (#26164367) Homepage

      So what?

      Half these quotes are nonsense themselves that merely display the non-science related biases of the person speaking (e.g. Delgado Domingos).

      What I don't get is what skeptics hope to prove by making quotes like that. Where are the peer-reviewed papers by all these guys? Oh, you mean they are just blowing hot air instead of doing the science? Perhaps they're too lazy, or maybe they are so brilliant that they can see through it all. However this brilliant minority seems to produce very little in the way of concrete science related to THIS subject (climatology) as opposed to the overwhelming, prodigious amount of science produced by the vast majority of climatologists of which a very large proportion has similar conclusions.

      Forget the soundbites, show me the science!

  • Cosmic rays have been found as a likely contributing source related to repeatedly confused Norweigan researchers...

    Video at 11.
  • by Phizzle (1109923) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:45PM (#26163909) Homepage
    Solar flares DO effect temperatures, and that has been consistently downplayed by the humanity-loathing environazis in their ongoing duchbaggery crusade for world luddism. But hey, lets not start any religious debates on /.
  • Hey if we ignore the problem, maybe it will go away! After all, humans can never be blamed for ANYTHING, right!
  • Now maybe it is just me, but doesn't it seem plausible that a huge ball of nuclear fire situated somewhere nearby might be causing changes to the earth's climate?

    I don't know what you would call this object, and I don't think there is any evidence that it exists, but if it did exist then slight changes in its energy output would probably result in changes to earth's climate as well.

    I know this sounds completely insane. I mean there aren't any such object out there right?

    Excuse me why I go put on some sunsc

    • by Chris Burke (6130) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:13PM (#26164309) Homepage

      You're a fucking genius. In the entire history of climatology, no scientist has ever considered the possibility that the sun impacts climate. I wonder why that is, but no matter, clearly you are their intellectual superior.

      Oh, wait, they've considered that, and solar variation explains at most 30% of the observed temperature change. Guess you aren't a genius after all. Sorry about that!

  • What about total solar energy output?

  • Realization (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AstrumPreliator (708436) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:19PM (#26164391)
    You know I think if Global Warming is any indication, science is going to get even more politicized in the near future. People will use science, or rather manipulated and partial data and false pretenses which they will call science, to push agendas and line their pockets. Before anyone calls me a shill for whatever organization they hate most and mods me down let me make clear that I'm not pointing at the vast majority of scientists who are doing honest work using the scientific method. I am pointing at both parties who have politicized this issue for their own gain.

    The thing that bugs me is that the public at large doesn't the read journals and papers on the latest scientific findings, instead they listen the political figure heads and corporations and news reporters, all of which have an agenda to push. I think what I'm beginning to realize is that science is ultimately going to suffer from this nonsense. I don't think it will matter if the results are peer-reviewed anymore, I think the public won't trust them anyway.

    Anyone have any thoughts on this?
    • Re:Realization (Score:5, Insightful)

      by east coast (590680) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @05:20PM (#26165395)
      You don't even need to look as far as politics. Just look at some of the moderations around here and you'll see a clear agenda behind some of them. If that can drive us at this level there's no telling where things will go when there is money and real power behind the same kind of thinking that gets totally valid posts modded down as over rated.

      Seeing some facts being shot down around here because they're not in line with someone elses way of thinking has made me a cynic about geekdom in general. All of the mouths yammering on about truth via scientific reasoning are completely drowned out by those who feel the need to push their ideas on other regardless of the truth being 6 inches from their faces.
  • Bigger problems (Score:3, Insightful)

    by cdrguru (88047) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @06:01PM (#26165987) Homepage

    The bigger problem is that no matter what, "climate change" is a fact of life that we have yet to deal with. It is upon us for whatever reason.

    Personally, I do not believe it is all human-caused and therefore cannot be stopped or deterred by any human action. I might be wrong, but it seems an awful lot like someone observing that each morning when they awaken the sun rises and therefore believes that it is their awakening that causes the sun to rise. Somewhat arrogant, perhaps?

    The problem is that we have not built things in the last 100 years or so to account for even the possibility that the climate might be variable. Reluctantly we have begun to acknowledge that it might not be a good idea to build fragile structires in the path of hurricanes. We have yet to begin to acknowledge there might be a risk to building certain types of structures in areas frequented by tornados. The thought that sea levels might change is even further from anyone's mind.

    The reality is that the climate has been remarkably calm and forgiving for the last 400 years or so. Much further back than we have detailed history of. What was the climate like in 1200 AD? How about 150 AD? 2500 BC? Sorry, but all we can do is guess from some very indistinct records. We have some evidence in ice cores, some historical documents and some biological evidence. As to where the sea levels were 4500 years ago we have no idea. Clearly, there have been changes because we know, for example, that the British Isles were connected to mainland Europe some time in the past.

    Humans have been around for perhaps 4.5 million years, in one form or another. The Earth's climate has a history of hundreds of millions of years before that and again, we have only the faintest idea of what it was like.

    Assuming the climate is going to be the same tomorrow as it was today is a reasonable expectation. Things do not change on that scale very quickly. However, assuming the climate will be the same in 100 years as it was 100 years ago is provably false over periods of time where we have pretty decent records. George Washington dragged heavy sledges across the frozen Delaware River which is impossible today because the river doesn't freeze.

    Trying to terraform the Earth to keep the climate the same way it was before is a pointless and futile exercise. Beliving that humans can control the climate is an arrogant statement that is provably false. The climate is going to change and there is nothing we can do to change that fact. If you build your house at the beachfront, do not be surprised when the water level rises.

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