Graph via Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature
This week, a climate hearing was held in the US House of Reps. Six 'experts' on climate were brought in, but only three were scientists. And it turns out that one of the GOP's star witnesses -- a scientist who's been vocal in his skepticism of global temperature records, the physicist Richard Muller, of University of California, Berkeley, didn't quite help them disprove climate change. Quite the opposite, in fact.
GOOD reports on what's got to be my favorite anecdote from the climate hearings. But first, some background:
[Richard] Muller has been working on an independent project to better estimate the planet's surface temperatures over time. Because he is willing to say publicly that he has some doubts about the accuracy of the temperature stations that most climate models are based on, he has been embraced by the science denying crowd. A Koch brothers charity, for example, has donated nearly 25 percent of the financial support provided to Muller's project.
Skeptics of climate science have been licking their lips waiting for his latest research, which they hoped would undermine the data behind basic theories of anthropogenic climate change. At the hearing today, however, Muller threw them for a loop with this graph ...
That's the one above.
As you can see -- and more importantly, as Muller himself has come to believe -- the established data collected by temperature stations around the world are accurate. Muller's independent work confirms that the data on which the majority of the best climate models rely upon is actually quite good.
Which is why it must have pissed off the GOP Reps, who were counting on him to offer testimony skeptical of climate change, when he announced the following: "We see a global warming trend that is very similar to that previously reported by the other groups. The world temperature data has sufficient integrity to be used to determine global temperature trends."
In other words, Muller's Koch-funded project, which skeptics had hoped would call into question the validity of the data backing the projections of climate models, instead provided even further evidence yet that they are correct. There's even better reason to believe that the climate models are accurate than there was before. It's science, folks.