The Climate Commission has today released a briefing paper that corrects the confusion and confirms that the Earth continues to warm at an alarming rate.
The Earth continues to warm strongly. Scientists assess this based on long term observations of the heat content of the ocean, the air temperature (an indicator of the heat content of the atmosphere), and the amount of heat absorbed by the land, glaciers, ice sheets and sea ice.
Understanding changes in climate requires data over long time periods, at least 30 years and preferably much longer.
The best measure of global warming is ocean heat content as it absorbs nearly 90% of additional heat trapped by greenhouse gases. Global ocean heat content has increased substantially over the last 40 years, and the strongly upward trend has continued through the most recent decade up to the present.
Singling out short term trends in air temperature to imply that global warming is not occurring is incorrect and misleading.
Author: Climate Commission
Tags: climate change, temperature, warming, Will Steffen
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