Monday, May 10, 2004

A Study in Contrasts

Read this Time article and this Wired article, about jet contrails causing warming.

If you just read the Time article you would have only heard one side of the story and you might have believed this crap:

"The only way to prove the point is to keep the jets on the tarmac and see what happens. That's exactly what occurred in 2001, between Sept. 11 and 14, when U.S. air travel was shut down following the terrorist attacks. During that period, the swing between daytime highs and nighttime lows sometimes measured more than twice as much as usual, perhaps owing to a reduction in cirrus clouds that allowed collected solar heat to radiate away."

Anyone who has any kind of science background would laugh at this excerpt. You cannot possibly make a valid conclusion about climate change by examining three days. This example exemplifies the worst kind of science reporting. The Wired article, on the other hand, is actually balanced. It includes the dissenting voice of a professor of atmospheric sciences who says:

"'So many processes affect the temperature of the Earth that contrails could easily be acting to cool the Earth, and yet the overall temperature trend could be increasing,' Detwiler said."

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