I spent 25 years of my life worried about global warming. And one of the best proofs that the scientists and the media both had to keep me convinced was warmer winters, with less snow. Al Gore talked about it. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. wrote about it. Dozens of scientists published papers showing that winters were getting warmer, with less snow.
Well, in the midst of this kind of certainty about warmer winters, with less snow, some scientists, among them a Russian named Habibullo Abdussamatov, dared to question the idea that warmer winters, with less snow, were caused by carbon dioxide in the first place and also questioned whether Earth would continue to warm during the next few decades.
Abdussamatov and the rest of the skeptical scientists were widely ridiculed, even condemned. Corrupt, sub-human, blind, people called them. And worse.
They were none of these things.
Then, a funny thing started happening a couple of autumns ago. First, significant early-season snow events began to materialize during fall. Second, winters in the Northern Hemisphere started to show characteristics of the winters that Al Gore and RFK Jr. said they missed so much.
But now, in our era of terror of weather, the return to colder winters, with more snow, has been twisted by the same people who missed the colder winters, with more snow, of their youth. These new cold winters, with more snow, were not evidence of natural climate cycles, they said. The snow was, in fact, caused by global warming. This is what they said. And I have to believe that it is what they meant.
But it cannot continue. The science claiming that the unfolding transition to colder winters, with more snow, is proof of global warming is bad science. And turning an entire generation of people into nature-fearers is a grave sin.
The ocean-atmosphere system did not use to sit in benevolent stasis. Sea level did not use to remain ever stable. Droughts are not a product of modernity, and they are not increasing in number. And early-season snowstorms like the one unfolding in the Northeast were never proof of global warming. Not when they happened in the past, and not now.
To Mr. Gore, and his still passionate supporters, I say this: You cannot have it both ways. You cannot count the absence of snow as proof of your theories and the presence of snow as the proof of your theories.
We’re smarter than that. And you’re going have to do better, if you wish to win this debate.