When Erik the Red first arrived in Greenland, the fertile green land was perfect for farming. But within a few centuries the thriving Viking settlements had been wiped out by global cooling. The Little Ice Age is one of many climactic eras that have been scientifically identified. Since about 1850 the earth has been in a warming period.
What is the role of carbon dioxide in warming? The best available records of temperature and atmospheric CO2 over the past 650,000 years indicate that the earth’s temperature always rises first, followed by a rise in carbon dioxide. If a warmer earth leads to increased levels of CO2-and not the other way around-can humans’ use of fossil fuels be the cause of global warming? Shouldn’t this critical question remain open to scientific inquiry?
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