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Mar 13

Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years

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Location: The Heritage Foundation's Lehrman Auditorium

The Earth currently is experiencing a warming trend, but there is scientific evidence that this warming seems to be part of a 1,500-year cycle (plus or minus 500 years) of moderate temperature swings.  It has long been accepted that the Earth has experienced climate cycles, most notably the 90,000-year Ice Age cycles.  But in the past 20 years or so, modern science has discovered evidence that within those broad Ice Age cycles, the Earth also experiences 1,500-year warming-cooling cycles.  Evidence of the global nature of the 1,500-year climate cycles includes very long-term proxies for temperature change - ice cores, seabed and lake sediments, and fossils of pollen grains and tiny sea creatures.  Shorter-term proxies include cave stalagmites, tree rings from trees both living and buried, boreholes and a wide variety of other temperature proxies.

So, is the Earth currently experiencing a warming trend?  Yes.  Are human activities, including the burning of fossil fuel and forest conversion, the primary - or even significant - drivers of this current temperature trend?  The scientifically appropriate answer - cautious and conforming to the known facts - is: probably not. 

S. Fred Singer, an Adjunct Scholar with the National Center for Policy Analysis, is Professor Emeritus of Environmental Science at the University of Virginia, and President of the Science and Environmental Policy Project.  He was the first Director of the U.S. Weather Satellite Service and served five years as Vice Chairman of the National Advisory Committee on Oceans and Atmospheres.  He received the first Science Medal from the British Interplanetary Society and won a NASA commendation in 1997 for his research on particle clouds.

More About the Speakers

S. Fred Singer

Hosted By

Edwin Meese III Edwin Meese III

Ronald Reagan Distinguished Fellow Emeritus Read More