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cross reference to Quaternary_glaciation#Next_glacial_period
- I lived through the 1970s and I can assure you, it wasn't considered conjecture back then. Our science text books in school claimed the earth was cooling into a catastrophic ice age and we would run out of oil by 2010. The only reason Wikipedia is trying to downplay it now is because everyone knows it's bunk and remembering what the "experts" said in the 1970s sheds a lot of light on what they are saying now. Remember, only 9 years until the end of the world. - AOC in 2018— Preceding unsigned comment added by 184.108.40.206 (talk • contribs) 17:21, 21 June 2021 (UTC)
Issue with sentence in lead
The statement in the lead is problematic in many ways:
The current scientific consensus on climate change is that the Earth underwent global warming throughout the 20th century and continues to warm.
The article is about a conjecture which has subsequently been rejected. It is quite appropriate for the league to start out with the discussion of the conjecture as it does, and comment on the current view of the conjecture. The sentence included presumably attempts to summarize the present view but it does so very clumsily.
The sentence is written as if it is a refutation of something like the following:
Global cooling was a conjecture that the earth was cooling throughout the 20th century.
If that had been the conjecture, the statement (if true) would be an appropriate rejoinder. But that wasn't the conjecture. The conjecture doesn't suggest that there was no warming in the early part of the 20th century. .The conjecture, simply stated, was that recent cooling had been observed and was projected to continue. the facts are that recent cooling had been observed, but the projection that this would continue turned out to be incorrect. Let's structure a sentence that makes that point.
I haven't checked to see if the sentence used is supportable by the reference, but the references to the 2007 report. Why use that when the 2014 report is available? there might be situations when use of an outdated report is warranted but this is not one of them.
The sentence as stated claims that global warming occurred throughout the 20th century. The literal meaning of this is that the temperature graph must be strictly increasing at every point. I don't wish to insist on an overly literal interpretation of the word "throughout". An example or two of a temperature decrease or even flat shouldn't be considered a rejection of the broad term. However an examination of the graph in the IPCC report makes it clear that the global temperature in 1975 was lower than it was in 1940 (I'm doing this by casual inspection of the graph, if this becomes an important issue we can track down the underlying data points). A 35 year period of cooling, while it doesn't reject the scientific consensus that the earth in general is warming, does reject the overly broad statement that warming occurred "throughout" 20th century.
It is entirely understandable that scientists observing 35 year period of cooling (recall that many scientists suggest that a 30 year period is an appropriate period of time to draw conclusions) would express concern about whether this trend would continue. It did not, but it should be understandable that such a concern would be expressed. I have no problem with stating that the conjecture is turned out to be false, but let's make that statement using a factual claim that can be supported by a reliable source, not a sloppily written claim.--S Philbrick(Talk) 16:27, 31 December 2020 (UTC)
- I've rephrased it to remove your "throughout" objection. I doubt that 2007 vs 2014 is of any importance (is the ref even needed? It is uncontroversial; the claim is in the lede; and is fully reffed by the linked GW page anyway). I think we need something here; the article should be to some extent self-contained so it needs reality in the lede William M. Connolley (talk) 16:54, 31 December 2020 (UTC)
- William M. Connolley, Sorry, I find that wholly inadequate. It's a step in the right direction, as it removes an inaccurate word, but we are still left with a casual statement that isn't truly responsive to the issue. It is still accompanied by reference to an outdated source. I didn't bother to check to see if the claim is supported by that source because it's not the current scientific view. While we are anticipating a new report next year, the most recent report is the 2014 report (although they may be more recent peer-reviewed relevant articles). If we want to source to the IPCC which makes sense, we I do need to find some exact wording to quote, or put together a sentence that supported by the report that is responsive to the issue. Talking about the entire 20th century is misleading. The proponents of the cooling conjecture were not arguing that the world temperature dropped in the first half of the century, so stating that it didn't is responsive to the conjecture. The conjecture was that the temperature dropped for a substantial period of time and and that cooling was conjectured to continue. There were correct to report the multi-decadal cooling, but there conjecture that it would continue turned out to be false. Surely we can construct a sentence that says that it is supported by scientific literature. The sentence you are pushing to include doesn't do that. S Philbrick(Talk) 19:31, 31 December 2020 (UTC)
- The statement isn't supposed to be "responsive"; it is context. As to the ref, I'm not sure why you're so hung up about it; I suggested, above, just removing it and you didn't reply to that idea, so I've tried it.
- The conjecture was that - I'm doubtful that it was as unified as you suggest. But, if you wish to propose a better sentence, please do William M. Connolley (talk) 12:33, 1 January 2021 (UTC)
However an examination of the graph in the IPCC report makes it clear that the global temperature in 1975 was lower than it was in 1940That is the same rookie way of interpreting curves that has given us the Global warming hiatus bullshit. Drawing conclusions from comparing two data points that have been carefully selected to lead to a specific conclusion is a form of cherry picking. Use 1935-1975 or 1940-1973 instead of 1940-1975 and you get an increase instead. Competent scientists use linear regression, which is far less sensitive to outliers than comparing the endpoints, and they do not pick intervals which "happen to" start at one of the maxima of the curve and "happen to" end at one of the minima. Wikipedia uses the published conclusions of those experts, not the far less reliable original research of Wikipedia editors. --Hob Gadling (talk) 00:53, 1 January 2021 (UTC)
- Ah well careful here. If people actually were comparing 1940 to 1975, then we should be reporting that, even if it is a rookie error. People have done a lot more staring at temperature time series since then William M. Connolley (talk) 12:33, 1 January 2021 (UTC)
- Hob Gadling, You are missing the point. I'm very familiar with the concept of cherry picking. For example, picking 1940-1973 sounds very much like cherry picking. You also seem to misunderstand the whole issue when you talk about picking an interval that just " 'happen to' end at one of the minima". the context is a supposition in the mid-70s so the most recent endpoint was the then current temperature series. Surely you don't suggest that someone in 1975 should use a period from 1940 to 1980. In addition, I'm not arguing that the conjecture was scientifically solid. Almost by definition it wasn't because it turned out not to be true. However, this is an article about the conjecture. It's appropriate to discuss the conjecture, and it is appropriate to add a comment that explains that the conjecture turned out to be false. My sole point is that the sloppy sentence proposed for inclusion doesn't do the job.
- I would prefer sentence something along the lines of "although the global temperature series suggested that the temperature was decreasing in recent decades (as of mid-70s), as additional data became available through time, the global temperature series demonstrated significant increases over the next decades, which falsified the conjecture." I happily concede that's off the top of the head and casual and could be tightened, but at least it provides context as opposed to the existing sentence which doesn't respond to the conjecture. S Philbrick(Talk) 17:12, 1 January 2021 (UTC)
- Of course 1973 is cherry-picked, no more or less than 1975. The article says, "On January 11, 1970, the Washington Post reported that "Colder Winters Held Dawn of New Ice Age"". Surely you don't suggest that someone in 1970 would use a period from 1940 to 1975. So, my alarm sensors went off when I read that "However an examination" sentence.
- As I said, if the 1940-1975 interval was specifically used in RS, we can use it here. If not, we can't. Since your suggestion does not use that interval, it is fine. --Hob Gadling (talk) 06:29, 2 January 2021 (UTC)
- Hob Gadling, The opening sentence states: "Global cooling was a conjecture, especially during the 1970s,..." It is my understanding that the global cooling conjecture isn't tied to a specific point in time, but a more general period of time as described by "during the 1970s" so I made the casual selection of the midpoint of the period. However, I trust you understand that if you are looking at an interval whose beginning and end points are both in the past, one has to be careful about cherry picking at both ends, but if you are looking at it interval that ends at the time you are doing the analysis, you typically only have to worry about cherry picking the beginning point (it's a little more complicated than that but roughly speaking). It's also widely stated (but if it's not true we can revisit) that scientists like a 30 year period at least, based on the understandable belief that shorter periods of time may be more noise than signal. That's the reason I picked 1975 as an endpoint in 1945 as a beginning point — I tried to pick a point around the time the controversy was taking place and then backed up 30 years. If you have another alternative, please share. You identified a quote that references 1970. I'm sure you've seen that there are several other dates, so there's nothing magical about 1970. Pick an end date sometime between 1970 and 1975, backup 30 years, and my guess is that the trendline will be negative for most selections. This is what motivated the conjecture. Do you disagree?
- We now know that there were problems with the conjecture. It obviously did not turn out to be valid. We ought to say that in this article, but a statement about warming in the first half of the 20th century is not relevant to the conjecture, so let's say something that's relevant not pick out some facts that happens to be true but has nothing to do with the conjecture. I think your closing statement suggested support for my proposal. Did I misunderstand? S Philbrick(Talk) 01:35, 3 January 2021 (UTC)
- I had expected my last words
As I said, if the 1940-1975 interval was specifically used in RS, we can use it here. If not, we can't. Since your suggestion does not use that interval, it is fineto put this matter at rest. Nobody wants to use your WP:OR interval, so it stays fine.
- This is a completely pointless blown-out-of-proportion tangent starting from one small objection of mine to one point of reasoning. BTW, 1975 "backed up 30 years" is not 1940. (I hope that last sentence will not turn into another long discussion.) --Hob Gadling (talk) 07:20, 3 January 2021 (UTC)
- I had expected my last words
SP reworked the sentence per his suggestion; I've very lightly re-worked that. There's a slight subtlety that my version hints at: the temperature series available then were not just shorter, they were of much lower quality; more recent series show much less cooling over the period they were looking at William M. Connolley (talk) 20:16, 3 January 2021 (UTC)
In the beginning of this article:
Although the global temperature series available at the time suggested that the temperature had decreased for several decades up to the mid-70s, as additional data became available through time, the global temperature series demonstrated significant increases over the next decades, which falsified the conjecture.
This paragraph simultaneously claims that several decades of data confirmed (suggested) the global cooling conjecture, AND then several decades "falsified" it.
You cannot have both. Either several decades of global temperature series are enough to settle the claim, in which case both "accept" AND "falsify" are true – clearly a contradiction. Or they're not enough to settle the claim – in which case the conjecture is open.
I mean, maybe the global cooling conjecture has been falsified. I'd assume it has. But the reason given in the lede immediately stand out as nonsense.
- Yeah, it is poor. There was a better earlier version but unfortunately this removed it, and I guess someone else replaced it badly.
- What it is trying to say is that (a) in the 70s, the T series were (1) short and (2) new, and (3) showing cooling, but that (b) T series to now show unambiguous warming; and (c) modern series have revised the series that people looked at then, and show less cooling than was then though to be seen William M. Connolley (talk) 13:07, 6 October 2021 (UTC)
- It's worth noting, on talk at least, that analysis of the record-as-we-now-have-it shows that the "cooling" period probably wasn't even statistically significant; see https://tamino.wordpress.com/2021/10/16/an-honest-appraisal-of-the-global-temperature-trend/. That's a blog post, but by an expert, so might be an RS William M. Connolley (talk) 20:20, 16 October 2021 (UTC)
Researchers too cold to check temps at station
- Source? Slatersteven (talk) 09:06, 3 February 2023 (UTC)
- WP:NOTFORUM. This has nothing to do with the article, let alone with improving the article (which is the goal of this page). --Hob Gadling (talk) 09:29, 3 February 2023 (UTC)
Global cooling was in fact a scientific consensus.
Quit with the revisionism. Every one of the major news outlets at the time from the New York Times to the Los Angeles Times to Time Magazine to NPR...even Leonard Nimoy made hysterical claims about the 'coming Ice Age'. All these outlets cited as sources the contemporary 'scientific consensus'. 2603:8001:C200:1637:C095:D281:DBB8:516C (talk) 23:08, 27 October 2023 (UTC)