It does amuse me, or rather it would if it wasn't so serious, that there are STILL some people out there who refuse to accept that the climate is changing and not for the better.
Predictably the hard of thinking were out in force today after President Obama's speech where he said that Climate Change was the greatest threat to our planet and that: 'The world is looking to the United States to lead'.
Actually Barack for the past few decades we have been looking at the United States and yelling 'OI YANKS, STOP POLLUTING THE PLANET' as you lot were the worst culprits but nice to see that you have caught up with us and are going to do something about it before we all disappear under the English Channel over here.
Amidst the replies on US websites condemning the 'conspiracy' and the 'myth' of climate change, my favourite response was from the Canadian who berated anyone who bought into the idea that we are committing suicide by ruining the atmosphere as ignorant of the facts and then ended his rant by claiming China was in Europe. Awkward.
Anyway, the facts are all out there if you want to go and have a look, i'm not going to link to them, i'm not your mother, go look yourself and educate yourself.
The most reliable argument from climate change deniers is that the planet has gone through cycles of warming and cooling and this is just one of those times.
True, the planet has warmed and cooled previously but the last time it took 10,000 years for the CO2 levels to raise by 100 parts per million, we have raised it from 280 to 379 parts per million in the last 150 years.
Another common argument is changes in the Sun via Sun Spots or some other Solar activity but since 1978, a series of satellite instruments have measured the energy output of the sun directly. The satellite data show a very slight drop in the amount of energy the Sun has given off over this time period so the sun doesn't appear to be responsible for the warming trend observed over the past 30 years. Want another try?
How about the Global sea level rising? In the last century the sea level rose by 170mm, in the 15 years of this century so far it has raised by 47mm so we are in line for a 319mm rise this century.
Global temperature rise? The 20 warmest years having occurred since 1981 and with all 10 of the warmest years occurring in the past 12 years.
The last refuge of the ignorant is a shrug and say a rise of 1 or 2C, big deal, means warmer summers which is quite right.
One or two extra degrees may sound like a small amount, but even the smallest changes in global temperature correspond to enormous changes in the environment, the average temperatures were only 5-9C less than today during the last ice age so a few degrees can make a massive difference.
As i said up above, doesn't matter to me if you want to ignore the 98% of climate scientists and the mountains of evidence, most which you can see with your own eyes if you open them, but be prepared to be dismissed as ignorant cranks.
And for crying out loud buy an Atlas, it's embarrassing.