GOP Congressman Falsely Claims Study ‘Confirms The Halt In Global Warming’

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Rep. Lamar Smith at a recent hearing claimed a new study published in the journal Nature Climate Change “confirms the halt in global warming.” It doesn’t. In fact, the authors of the paper write, “We do not believe that warming has ceased.”

Smith, chairman of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology and longtime climate change skeptic, used the Nature study as ammunition against the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in an ongoing battle over the validity of a paper that NOAA researchers published in the journal Science last June.

While the Nature study, published online in late February, claims there was a “slowdown” in the rate of global warming in the early 21st century, the Science paper argues there was not. But the studies compared different time periods. Both studies agree that there was no complete halt in global warming and the long-term warming trend remains unabated.

At the March 16 House hearing, Smith also continued to criticize the Science paper. He said the paper was “prematurely published,” but the editor-in-chief of Science told us Smith’s claim is “baseless and without merit.” Smith also said that the NOAA researchers used “controversial methods” in their study, but the authors of the Nature paper cited by Smith said this wasn’t the case. In fact, they cite the Science paper as having “high scientific value.”

Overall, each study asked different scientific questions, the answers to which can both remain valid and correct, according to the Nature authors themselves.

Smith vs. NOAA

This is not the first time Smith, a Republican from Texas, has made false statements about climate science and the so-called “Karl study,” named after Thomas R. Karl, director of NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information and the Science paper’s —> Read More