We all have our own take about the climate these days. Whether we agree, disagree, or are completely fed up with the proposals or trends or proposals for actual trends, we can’t deny that this topic has crept into daily conversations, news, and the political arena to the point that we have almost simply accepted it as a problem.

But will it always be a problem?

Some days, it sure seems that way.

A new project, called the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Study at the University of California, Berkeley, is under way to come up with a comprehensive study of global temperature trends. The bulk of the project will be concerned with the collection of data from archive records and from measurement stations around the globe to create a massive database that would be credible and used for environmental study and analysis by other scientists.

The study definitely has good intentions. As praised by atmospheric physicist S. Fred Singer at the Independent Institute think-tank, the project does well in trying to settle the scientific validity part of the climate debate. Indeed, responding to the email scandal back in 2009 is part of the motivation behind the study. The leaked email that implicated a coordinated scientific fraud among climate scientists in 2009 raised ethical concerns in scientific investigations and has cast a shadow over science talk in the climate debate ever since. Although there have been numerous attempts to achieve goals similar to that of the Berkeley study, the results were never able to satisfy across the spectrum of climate change stances. The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Study may finally put a conclusion to these doubts and allow us to move forward.

But is that enough? Actually understanding climate trends is an important first step to implementing changes for the better. Yet in an age where new iPhone generations are put on market before we can really call the old generation old, where two years pass like centuries amidst the explosion of new ideas, technology, discoveries, shouldn’t we worry more about the pace of progress on climate research? The earth is, after all, our home.


S. Fred Singer’s article at the Independent Institute can be found at: http://www.independent.org/newsroom/article.asp?id=2991

More information about the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Study can be found at their website: http://berkeleyearth.org/

Image courtesy of http://nasaimages.org.