Tuesday, August 22, 2006

It's All About Averages

If you listened at all to the mainstream media last year, then you would have expected Florida and the Gulf Coast to have been wiped out by now due to a series of severe hurricanes.  I mean, they were preaching that global warming is out of control, and that we can expect our oceans to boil off any day now.

Well, it seems that this year's hurricane season is actually on a less-than-average trend:


The Earth has always changed, even before man was around to observe it.  The funny thing about the Earth is that it tends to make its climatic changes over thousands, or hundreds of thousands of years.  The funny thing about mankind is that we tend to form our conclusions based only on a small set of most recent data.  (As a case in point, I've concluded that this will be a mild hurricane season based on the level of activity thusfar).

We're so convinced that major permanent changes are going to happen in our lifetime, that any time there is a winter with major snowfall, or a summer with a drought, or a hurricane season with 26 tropical storms, we're ready to accept that as the new norm.  Fortunately, spikes like these are just noise: the true signal can only be obtained by taking the average over a relatively long period of time (decades or centuries).

Do I think that global warming exists?  Sure, to some degree.  But, I don't believe it to be as serious as some people make it out to be.  And I think that it may have happened regardless of whether or not we were here to witness it.

But, I've already blogged about this topic before... 

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