Those who Believe in Global Warming Changed the Phrase to “Climate Change” in Order to Deceive the Public

Skeptics accuse those who believe in global warming of having changed the phrase “global warming” to “climate change” in order to deceive the public. They claim that the change was made in order to explain any natural phenomenon other than mere warmth. They state that this change was relatively recent, although they rarely say when it was made. By saying that it is recent, one could assume that they mean in the last decade at the most.

However, the phrase “climate change” and “climatic change” have been in the scientific literature for almost sixty five years. With respects to human-caused climate change, the earliest known scientific papers using the phrase were published in 1956 (In the titles of those papers).

Below is a condensed list of scientific papers, from before the year 2000, with the phrase climate or climatic change in their titles:

1996: Climate Change: 1995: The Science of Climate Change: Contribution of Working Group I to the Second Assesment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change – J.A. Lakeman

1994: Managing the global commons: The economics of climate change – William D. Nordhaus

1994: What Do People Know About Global Climate Change? 1. Mental Models – Ann Bostrom, M. Granger Morgan, Baruch Fischhoff, Daniel Read

1993: Reflections on the Economics of Climate Change – William D. Nordhaus

1991: The cost of slowing climate change: a survey– William D. Nordhaus

1991: Climate change and wildfire in Canada – M. D. Flannigan and , C. E. Van Wagner

1990: Global Climate Change: Implications for the United States Navy–  Department of the Navy: Naval War College

1990: Global climate change and US agriculture – Richard M. Adams, Cynthia Rosenzweig, Robert M. Peart, Joe T. Ritchie, Bruce A. McCarl, J. David Glyer, R. Bruce Curry, James W. Jones, Kenneth J. Boote & L. Hartwell Allen Jr

1989: The Potential Effects of Global Climate Change on the United States – Joel B. Smith

1984: Response of unmanaged forests to CO2-induced climate change: available information, initial tests and data requirements – Solomon, A.M.; Tharp, M.L.; West, D.C.; Taylor, G.E.; Webb, J.W.; Trimble, J.L.

1980: On the distribution of climate change resulting from an increase in CO2 content of the atmosphere – Syukuro Manabe and Richard T. Wetherald

1978: What might man-induced climate change mean? – Charles F. Cooper

1977: Carbon Dioxide and Climate: The Uncontrolled Experiment. Possibly severe consequences of growing CO2 release from fossil fuels require a much better understanding of the carbon cycle, climate change, and the resulting impacts on the atmosphere – F. Baes Jr., H. E. Goeller, J. S. Olson and R. M. Rotty

1976: Climate Change and the Quality of Life for the Earth’s New Millions – Walter Orr Roberts

1975: Climatic Change: Are We on the Brink of a Pronounced Global Warming? – Wallace S. Broecker

1961: Man’s activity as a factor in climatic change– H. Flohn

1956: The Carbon Dioxide Theory of Climatic Change – Gilbert N. Plass

Based on their claim that the phrase “climate change” is a recent invention, one can tell that Skeptics have not studied the scientific literature on the subject.

What is the difference between “global warming” and “climate change”? Simply put, global warming is the cause; climate change is the result. Both terms are interchangeable.



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