Global Warming’s Birthday

Today is global warming’s birthday — well, the day the term was coined 35 years ago. What are you going to do on this day?

On Aug. 8, 1975, Wally Broecker used the phrase global warming in scientific literature for the first time. The article, published in the journal Science, was: “Are we on the brink of a pronounced global warming?

In the article, he wrote: “The exponential rise in the atmospheric carbon dioxide content will tend to become a significant factor and by early in the next century will have driven the mean planetary temperature beyond the limits experienced during the last 1000 years.”

Exactly right! (See our latest summary on global warming news for some of the latest details.)

“Broecker’s paper is a reminder that global warming was actually predicted before it became evident in the global temperature records over a decade later (when Jim Hansen in 1988 famously stated that ‘global warming is here’),” RealClimate notes.

The question now is not if we are experiencing global warming (although many are still trying to make that the question), and the question is not about what the causes and effects of global warming are.

But, rather, the question is: what are we going to do about it?

What are you going to do about it today?

Thank you, Grist, for bringing this global warming birthday and the quotes above to our attention.

Photo Credit: woodleywonderworks via flickr

8 thoughts on “Global Warming’s Birthday”

  1. Let's take oath on this day to sggest climatic solutions to the world. Let's participate in mega global event of 350. org' on 10/10/10. Let's save Mother Eaqrth….

  2. Right before the statement on Global Warming the same scientist were saying the climate was cooling. But at that time making the cooling statement did not catch much attention or research money.
    Only when they went to the idea of saying it was warming did the money roll in.

    Lets face it as Mark Twain said "Climate is what we anticipate and weather is what we get".

    Being a scientist I can tell you the climate is changing as it always has. We have very little control over it and all we can do is wait and see what happens. As for the statement that we are trying to save future generations from the heat peril. Face the facts, on comming generations will have issues both climate wise and population wise that we can do nothing about.
    For the most part all this climate paranoia is both politcally and financially driven and if any one has taken the time to read the science literature comming out "Not Just The Abstracts" this its poorly written, slective in its subject matter, and not scientifically defendable. Essentially Bad science and Junk.

      1. Climate scientists are saying that humans are warming the planet. They are not agreeing on whether the climate would be stable absent human interference, whether we can stabilize it, or whether it would be cost-effective to do so.

        1. the climate would never be stagnant, but it’s clear we’re the hugely dominant influence on rapid warming:

          clearly, inaction would result in us not ‘stabilizing’ it. action, potentially.

          there’s less research on cost comparisons, but there seems to be some pretty strong evidence that it’s much, much cheaper to take action:

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