John Hinderaker Is No Scientist
He is a lawyer who knows very little about economics or science. What he does know is how to spread misinformation. In his latest attempt at misinforming his readers, he repeats one of the favorite myths of climate change denial. This myth states that the earth is not warming. Instead, the temperature data itself is bad because of temperature monitoring stations located in urban zones – which are warmer than non-urban areas. They claim that once you remove these data points, it shows no real warming in the earth’s temperature.
However, that myth has already been dispelled by a study which had the full endorsement of Power Line and Anthony Watts – The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature (BEST) study. The reason for their support of this project was simple. The study’s leader, Dr Richard Muller, was a skeptic and the study’s biggest donor was The Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation.
Unfortunately for Power Line and Fox News weatherman Anthony Watts, Dr. Muller is a real scientist and not a shill for the fossil fuel industry. The conclusion of his study? The temperature data is good and the earth really is warming.
Of course, once Dr. Muller confirmed that man-made climate change was real, Power Line and Anthony Watts both changed their opinions of him. That’s what ideologues do. For actual scientists, however, the BEST study just confirmed what they have known for years.
There are quite a few reasons to believe that the surface temperature record – which shows a warming of approximately 0.6°-0.8°C over the last century (depending on precisely how the warming trend is defined) – is essentially uncontaminated by the effects of urban growth and the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect. These include that the land, borehole and marine records substantially agree; and the fact that there is little difference between the long-term (1880 to 1998) rural (0.70°C/century) and full set of station temperature trends (actually less at 0.65°C/century). This and other information lead the IPCC to conclude that the UHI effect makes at most a contribution of 0.05°C to the warming observed over the past century.