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Letter: Yes, increasing greenhouse gases are warming our planet
06232018 CLIMATE EARTH

Many erroneous supposed facts have been propogated about climate change. We need scientific facts to make proper decisions. Some 97% of climate change scientists agree with man-made global warming, and over 99% of peer reviewed scientific articles — the gold standard in science — also agree with this. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change certainly agrees with the dangers of climate change, as does almost every other major scientific society. Some 195 nations also agree. If we don’t trust them, maybe we will trust the many studies that have been ordered by our U.S. government to evaluate climate change, including the National Climate Assessment, the U.S. military, the National Intelligence Agency, the Government Accountability Office and the Federal Reserve. These have all reported that climate change imposes grave consequences if not stopped, though their reports have been ignored by our present administration.

CO2 levels have increased about 44% — an indisputable fact. Another indisputable scientific fact is that CO2 and other greenhouse gases trap heat and warm the earth. Though they make up a small percent of our atmosphere, it is the percent increase that determines how much they warm our earth. Our temperatures are now increasing at least 10 times faster than any time in earth's history. NOAA, NASA, and all other meteorological societies agree totally that earth has warmed at least 1.8 degrees F over the last 100 years, most of it in the last 30 years, and this increase has coincided with the increase in CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels. According to NOAA, NASA and all other reliable sources, the last four years have been the four hottest in recorded history, and the nine hottest years in recorded history have come since 2005 — again scientific facts. This June was the hottest June in recorded history, according to The Weather Channel

Earth’s temperatures have certainly changed in the past, but we know the causes. The earth does not rotate around the sun in a perfect circle, and the tilt of the earth's axis changes. When the earth is the farthest from the sun and the tilt of the northern axis away from the sun is the greatest, we have the ice ages — every 100,000 years of so. Presently, these should cause us to be cooling slightly. The sun’s irradiation also has not changed appreciably, and volcanic activity has had little effect. The Pacific Decadal Oscillation and the Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation affect climate over 10-20 year cycles, but added together, they also show no appreciable change in temperatures. The only thing that correlates with our present temperature increase is the increase in greenhouse gases. Sea levels have been rising progressively faster — again check out NOAA and other reliable sources.

Vernon Dixon

Hiawassee

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