It’s over. Finished. Dead. Kaput. Surely no one who so much as glances at the chart above can give any credence to climate alarmism ever again. It is the most stunning refutation of global warming hysteria that I have ever seen. Of course I believe I have a pretty good handle on the facts — I’ve been following the debate for years. But I’ve never seen the case made so graphically — in both the literal and metaphorical senses of the word.
There are relatively few instrumental temperature records going back two centuries. This chart pulls together eight of them: one from UK; three from the USA; and four from Europe. The youngest dates all the way back to 1840; several go back to the mid-18th century, and one, the Central England record (the world’s oldest instrumental temperature record) is mid-17th century.
And what do they show? A long-term, slight upward trend — the long, slow, cyclical recovery from the Little Ice Age, which is well established and not in dispute. They show small random variations around the trend line. And they show absolutely no sign of the “Hockey Stick” effect beloved of Al Gore and James Hansen, which (as we now know from the CRU e-mails) was only fabricated by cobbling together two unrelated data sets in order (in their own words) to “hide the decline”.
Only the UK record appears to show even a hint of a sharper rise in recent decades, and even this is entirely comparable to the patterns seen in 1700/30, and indeed in 1820/40.
Of course the Warmists will question the quality of the data — after all, what were thermometers like in 1660? Fair point. But thermometers were not bad in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and half a degree would not make much difference to the overall picture, which is astonishingly consistent and compelling. Most importantly, in the last three decades when (we are told) there has been alarming global warming, thermometers have been excellent. And they just don’t support the orthodox narrative.
There is nothing to worry about. Nothing to fear. Nothing that requires any special or anthropogenic explanation. Above all, nothing to mitigate, and no justification in the world for the ruinously expensive programme that Brussels, and Chris Huhne, are undertaking. We’ve been sold a pup, but it’s time to put it out of its misery.
Hat-Tip to Nik from New York, who drew my attention to this chart in a comment on an earlier blog item.