Global warming ‘confirmed’ by independent study
The Earth’s surface really is getting warmer, a new analysis by a US scientific group set up in the wake of the “Climategate” affair has concluded. The Berkeley Earth Project has used new methods and some new data, but finds the same warming trend seen by groups such as the UK Met Office and Nasa.
The project was established by University of California physics professor Richard Muller, who was concerned by claims that established teams of climate researchers had not been entirely open with their data. He gathered a team of 10 scientists, mostly physicists, including such luminaries as Saul Perlmutter, winner of this year’s Nobel Physics Prize.
Funding came from a number of sources, including charitable foundations maintained by the Koch brothers, the billionaire US industrialists, who have also donated large sums to organisations lobbying against acceptance of man-made global warming.
Urban Heat Island Effect Investigated
The group’s work also examined claims from “sceptical” bloggers that temperature data from weather stations did not show a true global warming trend. The claim was that many stations have registered warming because they are located in or near cities, and those cities have been growing – the urban heat island effect.
The Berkeley group found about 40,000 weather stations around the world whose output has been recorded and stored in digital form. It developed a new way of analysing the data to plot the global temperature trend over land since 1800. What came out was a graph remarkably similar to those produced by the world’s three most important and established groups, whose work had been decried as unreliable and shoddy in climate sceptic circles.
Since the 1950s, the average temperature over land has increased by 1C, the group found.
They also report that although the urban heat island effect is real – which is well-established – it is not behind the warming registered by the majority of weather stations around the world.
Source: The Berkeley Earth project