Global cooling?

Last week I was deluged with tweets and Facebook posts discussing our heat wave (and, yes, @billmckibben, that means you) as a sign of global warming.

But any given heat wave is weather, not climate, as McKibben certainly knows. A big part of fighting global climate change is educating the general public about the issues. One of the standard dumbass denial tactics is to point at a cool season as “proof” that warming is a hoax. OK, it was unseasonably warm last week. It’s frickin’ cold out this week in Vermont. Does that mean last week’s climate change is over?

“Ooh, look at the global warming” tweets during warm spells only play into the hands of the deniers. The intent seems to be showing through a vast accumulation of data points that there is a trend. But each individual tweet is begging to be taken out of context (Twitter doesn’t do context, in general), muddying the issue for the public that really doesn’t understand the difference between weather and climate, or doesn’t want to.

Tweeting climate change, one hot spell at a time, is a bad tactic.


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