Sunday, March 01, 2009

'Double dumb ass award' winning piece gives good reality check

The raging hell-storm over super-pundit George Will's column denying global warming has a positive side, folks. Yes, some people reading Will's column may think, "oh, global warming is a hoax." Some will read the article, call it "embarrassingly inept" and award him a "double dumb ass award." (One Blue Marble)

Hopefully, everyone will read the piece and use it as a reality check; take the opportunity to do some research. Remember, there are two sides to this debate. And if we're going to make good choices, we need to be hearing both sides, and then understanding why one is more compelling than the other.

After reading Will's commentary with a very open mind, Pound360 (did a lot more research than we typically do before posting and) found a thorough
dismantling of Will's arguments at Climate Progress (a blog Time Magazine selected as one of the 15 top environmental websites).

Where did Will stray? On almost every point, but there are two main ones. First, global warming is just the latest climate fad. Just 30 years ago, global cooling was "widely considered inevitable" according to the NY Times (they printed that in 1975).

Well, the Times was wrong. Global cooling in the 70s was a myth. According to Climate Progress, "there was no scientific consensus in the 1970s that the Earth was headed into an imminent ice age." However, in 2009, 90 percent of 3,146 surveyed scientists believe the globe is warming and 82 percent believe human activity is "a significant factor." (

The second main issue in Will's piece is arctic sea ice. A couple points here. One, ice at the poles has been gaining dramatically since September. Two, the level of sea ice today is equal to that in 1979. Well, he's right about the first, but that's only because sea ice is gaining some of the losses after "a dramatic retreat" in 2007. (
Climate Progress) Regarding the second, he's just wrong.

Sea ice levels in 1979 were 16.79 million square kilometers. In 2009, estimates put global sea ice at 15.45 million square kilometers. (also from
Climate Progress)


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Pound360 Archive

About Me

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.