Global temps higher now than for most of past 11,300 years. It's not a hockey stick. This is a scythe.

© The Wall Street Journal

A new study published in the journal Science finds that Earth is on track to become warmer than it has been in 11.3 millennia.

The Wall Street Journal summarizes the findings:

The research shows that a one-degree temperature variation that took 11 millennia to occur since the end of the last major ice age has been replicated in the 150 years since the early days of the Industrial Revolution.

Agence France-Presse notes the data on location of the warming:

The data show that temperatures cooled by 0.8 degrees Celsius over the past 5,000 years, but have been rising again in the past 100 years, particularly in the northern hemisphere where land masses and population centres are larger.

Tim McDonnell at the Climate Desk notes an important context to appreciate the severity of the warming:

To be clear, the study finds that temperatures in about a fifth of this historical period were higher than they are today. But the key, said lead author Shaun Marcott of Oregon State University, is that temperatures are shooting through the roof faster than we’ve ever seen.

“What we found is that temperatures increased in the last 100 years as much as they had cooled in the last 6,000 or 7,000,” he said. “In other words, the rate of change is much greater than anything we’ve seen in the whole Holocene,” referring to the current geologic time period, which began around 11,500 years ago.

Grist looks at the new data and referring to climatologist Michael Mann's iconic graph, says it's a bigger, badder hockey stick.

I think we need a better term for this new, expanded graph. As Lloyd noted on Twitter (see below), if you look at the shape of the charted data, it's no mere hockey stick. This is a scythe.

Wikipedia/Public Domain

Considering that the scythe, a traditional agricultural tool, is now commonly associated with death and impending doom, like the life-threatening implications of unrelenting warming and considering today's levels of warming have not been seen on Earth since the advent of agriculture, it is a fitting description.


That anyone can still believe this all of this warming is natural and cyclical and not related to the sudden rise in human industrial activity during the past 150 years continues to boggle my mind.

Tags: Global Climate Change | Global Warming Science

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