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133,000,000 Wise Monkeys

Posted by feww on March 16, 2010

submitted by a reader

They See NO CO2, Smell NO CO2 and Believe NO CO2

Nearly half of Americans think climate change concerns are overstated and over a third doubt the environmental consequence—Gallop


The original Three Wise Monkeys hear, speak, see no evil. Wood carving at Toshogu, Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture, Japan. Source: Wikimedia.

As the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere reaches 390 parts per million (see below),  48 percent of Americans said they believed the seriousness of climate change is overstated, up from 41 percent in 2009 and 31 percent in 1997, when Gallup first ran the survey, Reuters  reported.

“Thirty-five percent said in the latest poll that the effects of global warming either will never happen (19 percent) or will not happen in their lifetimes (16 percent).”

Gallup surveyed about1,000 adults, and the poll had error margin of ± 4 percent.

What Percentage of Americans DO Understand and Care?

It doesn’t take the rocket scientists at NASA to work this one out. Add 48 and 35 and the maximum margins of error (otherwise allow for the “I dunno”), and deduct the subtotal from 100 percent:   100 – (48 + 35 + 4 + 4) = 9% of the U-S population

Only then will you realize what an uphill struggle this can be!


The graph shows recent monthly mean carbon dioxide measured at Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii.

The last four complete years of the Mauna Loa CO2 record plus the current year are shown. Data are reported as a dry air mole fraction defined as the number of molecules of carbon dioxide divided by the number of all molecules in air, including CO2 itself, after water vapor has been removed. The mole fraction is expressed as parts per million (ppm). Example: 0.000400 is expressed as 400 ppm.

In the above figure, the dashed red line with diamond symbols represents the monthly mean values, centered on the middle of each month. The black line with the square symbols represents the same, after correction for the average seasonal cycle. The latter is determined as a moving average of SEVEN adjacent seasonal cycles centered on the month to be corrected, except for the first and last THREE and one-half years of the record, where the seasonal cycle has been averaged over the first and last SEVEN years, respectively.

The last year of data are still preliminary, pending recalibrations of reference gases and other quality control checks. The Mauna Loa data are being obtained at an altitude of 3400 m in the northern subtropics, and may not be the same as the globally averaged CO2 concentration at the surface.

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3 Responses to “133,000,000 Wise Monkeys”

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