Cooling Greenland

In the wake of the release of the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment, arguing that anthropogenic warming is heating up the arctic faster than expected and faster than other parts of the globe, a familiar counter-argument has resurfaced – that Greenland is actually getting colder. Given the currency of the argument (it was prominently feature in a Tech Central Station-sponsored letter signed by a group of climate scientists to Sen. John McCain, R-AZ), it’s worth reviewing a rather straightforward bit of Global Climate Science 101:

The anthropogenic warming hypothesis does not predict the same sort of warming everywhere. The hypothesis predicts that some places would warm a lot, some less, some might even cool. That’s why “global climate change” is a more accurate way of describing it. From the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment:

Arctic warming map

You can see how citing Greenland’s cooling provides something of a misleading picture of the overall situation.