WTW: Less Sunlight Reaches Earth

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Happy Hump Day, y’all. Jebediah here. I truly love the title of this story: "Baffled Scientists Say Less Sunlight Reaching Earth."

After dropping for about 15 years, the amount of sunlight Earth reflects back into space, called albedo, has increased since 2000, a new study concludes.

That means less energy is reaching the surface. Yet global temperatures have not cooled during the period.

Increasing cloud cover seems to be the reason, but there must also be some other change in the clouds that’s not yet understood.

"The data also reveal that from 2000 to now the clouds have changed so that the Earth may continue warming, even with declining sunlight," said study leader Philip R. Goode of the New Jersey Institute of Technology. "These large and peculiar variabilities of the clouds, coupled with a resulting increasing albedo, presents a fundamental, unmet challenge for all scientists who wish to understand and predict the Earth’s climate."

"Global temperatures have not cooled." Are they sure? Much of the actual data shows that it is cities that are getting much hotter, but the surrounding areas are barely going up, and in some cases, going down, in temperature. For instance, NYC has gone up about 8 degrees since 1850 (which is about the time that the Little Ice Age ended), yet Albany has only gone up about .5 degrees, and the suburbs in NY State have gone down about .5 degrees (citiations are in a book, haven’t found them on the ‘net.)

But, gotta be Man’s fault, right?

"No doubt greenhouse gases are increasing," Goode said in a telephone interview. "No doubt that will cause a warming. The question is, ‘Are there other things going on?’"

Are they increasing? Some. I think the question that Goode asks is a good one. And, cannot forget the one that goes "why are the greenhouse gases increasing (if they are)?" We had the article on plants releasing more methane (a greenhouse gas). Maybe it is all the methane released in the Bermuda Triangle. Perhaps we should consider things like deforestation, ocean pollution (kills of plankton, who perform considerable CO2 to O2 change), and other types of plant loss before we jump right to "it’s the vehicles that use oil based substances." And, yes, those that I mentioned are mostly Man’s fault. But, I would like to know for sure.

Y’all be sure to visit the other White Trash Wednesday folks on the left hand sidebar! Peace out!

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