American skepticism on AGW soars
posted at 4:30 pm on March 11, 2010 by Ed Morrissey
Gallup has a new poll showing that the ground is eroding under the feet of anthropogenic global-warming advocates. Skepticism in the US has rapidly increased over the last four years, climbing from 30% in 2006 to almost half of all respondents in their latest survey:
Gallup’s annual update on Americans’ attitudes toward the environment shows a public that over the last two years has become less worried about the threat of global warming, less convinced that its effects are already happening, and more likely to believe that scientists themselves are uncertain about its occurrence. In response to one key question, 48% of Americans now believe that the seriousness of global warming is generally exaggerated, up from 41% in 2009 and 31% in 1997, when Gallup first asked the question.
Except for one year — the presidential election year of 2004 — skepticism had been a fairly marginal response in the US, hovering around the 30% mark. The scandals of the East Anglia CRU, the IPCC, and the climate-change industry in general appears to have seriously damaged the standing of AGW advocacy. As the chart shows, though, skepticism had already begun spiking well before the credibility collapse started in November.
Now, the marginalized group is those who see AGW as an existential threat within their lifetimes. That’s now down to 32% from a high of 40% in 2008, while skeptics on that point have increased to 67%. And there are even more reasons for skepticism now. Pajamas Media reports on more exposed e-mail, this time involving NASA, that shows that the government agency was hiding its own skepticism about its own data:
Email messages obtained by the Competitive Enterprise Institute via a Freedom of Information Act request reveal that the climate dataset of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) was considered — by the top climate scientists within NASA itself — to be inferior to the data maintained by the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit (CRU).
The NASA scientists also felt that NASA GISS data was inferior to the National Climate Data Center Global Historical Climate Network (NCDC GHCN) database.
These emails, obtained by Christopher Horner, also show that the NASA GISS dataset was not independent of CRU data.
Further, all of this information regarding the accuracy and independence of NASA GISS data was directly communicated to a reporter from USA Today in August 2007.
The reporter never published it.
Why is this important? Defenders of the East Anglia CRU conclusions, as well as those of the IPCC, insist that their data has an analog in NASA/GISS. They claim that even though East Anglia destroyed the raw data and that they have been exposed in manipulating results, the end result more or less matches what NASA/GISS has produced. If NASA considered its data inferior to the CRU effort, that calls both into question.
The effort continues to crumble, and as it does, it produces another hockey stick — a sharp increase not in global temperatures, but in global common sense.