Surface Temperature Data of Limited Scientific Value Even before Being Manipulated by Activists

Alan Carlin | July 22, 2019

Climate science has many fundamental problems.  One of them is the sparsity and mayor gaps in valid global temperature data prior to about 1980 and particularly prior to 1880, when there were only 174 stations with unadjusted data in the entire world.  This lack of data prior to he advent of satellite temperature data is a result of little data being collected until the late Twentieth Century.

Even worse, what data there is has been repeatedly “adjusted,” usually in a similar way by increasing recent data and decreasing earlier data.  Many independent observers question whether these “adjustments” may be fraudulent.  And since the resulting data has lost many of its cyclical characteristics, a recent report concludes that “since the Global Average Surface Temperature (GAST) data set validity is a necessary condition for EPA’s GHG/CO<sub>2</sub> Endangerment Finding, it too is invalidated” by the research findings in the report.

Briefly, there is no valid scientific basis for reaching any conclusions as to what  temperatures were prior to satellite data and to trust the adjusted GAST data. Yet climate alarmists usually assume that changes in surface temperatures prior to 1980 can be used to determine meaningful trends in global temperatures. To spend many trillions of dollars on the basis of such data is preposterous. We simply do not have data that would allow anyone to reach valid conclusions as to what temperatures were, let alone predicting what they will be many decades in the future, as most climate alarmists are want to do.

I argue  that the world and particularly the US should currently do nothing on the basis of current “consensus” climate science other than continuing research until many of the problems of climate science are much better understood. So I advocate continuing research, hopefully by both climate alarmists and skeptics until valid scientific conclusions can be reached after careful application of the scientific method. I advocate no expenditures and particularly no subsidies whatever for building any energy production or user facilities that do not meet strict market-based benefit-cost criteria and wildlife-protection safeguards until valid conclusions concerning  trends in global temperatures can be demonstrated scientifically and valid conclusions reached concerning the causes of these trends have been independently determined and verified. Current wind and solar installations do not meet these criteria.

As detailed previously on this blog, the best current scientific evidence says that changes in carbon dioxide levels have had no significant effects on temperatures. This directly contradicts the conclusions of the UN and every climate alarmist I know of. And it utilizes only data collected since 1980.  This is another of the fundamental problems of climate science that needs to be resolved before any more wind and solar energy facilities are built.