That the most recent month
and/or year and/or decade has been the warmest on record is a common
claim in media reports. For instance, in the CNN story mentioned in
the article at right (issue analysis), correspondent Ann Kellen
reported: "Scientists say 1997 was the warmest year on record and
this year is following suit."
But that's only the case if
one looks exclusively at surface-based temperature readings.
Atmospheric physicist S. Fred Singer noted in a July 25, 1997
Wall Street Journal op-ed that "weather satellite observations,
independently backed by balloon-borne sensors, have shown no global
warming whatsoever in the past 20 years."
This is a heated debate in
the scientific community, but it would be news to those who get
their news from the networks.