|Image courtesy of NASA image archive|
Every winter for at least the past 10 years, if not 15 or 20...I have heard someone make a comment about how cold or snowy it is and follow that up with something like "So much for Global Warming!" Most the time, you can tell that the person is joking and a good laugh is had by all (even though it has now been used so much that I want to punch the person instead of laugh)...but in the past couple years, I have been running into people who I am pretty sure are serious.
So let me just point out a couple common mistakes that some people seem to make.
- It is GLOBAL warming. Just because it happens to be cold where you are at the moment doesn't mean that temperatures are higher than normal elsewhere. It is a global average of temperatures...and the average appears to be rising.
- More rain and more snow. All over the US the past couple of years there have been some record snowfall and rainfall amounts. This does not negate global warming...in fact it could be because of global warming even though on the surface that might not make sense to people. Weather is somewhat cyclical - a severe summer will often lead to a more severe winter. Higher temperatures in other parts of the world can lead to more precipitation. Warmer air holds more moisture and warmer seas evaporate faster into the air. When this air laden with more than traditional amounts of moisture finally do cool, it creates more precipitation.