Is global warming speeding up?

My question here is largely rhetorical. Global warming trends have been roughly quadratic for decades and that means the rate of increase is increasing. Still, the NTY thinks this is something new to write about in their article I Study Climate Change. The Data Is Telling Us Something New (10/13/2023) with this first sentence:

Staggering. Unnerving. Mind-boggling. Absolutely gobsmackingly bananas.

I provide a response to this article in my Briefed by Data post A Response to a NYT Climate Article, suggesting that this first sentence is just alarmism. The article includes an animation illustrating that quadratic functions have increasing slopes and so the NYT image here is not surprising. Also, one should ask why the lines on this graph are over different periods.

Please check it out the Briefed by Data article. The basic conclusion is that yes, warming is speeding up, which is bad, but at the same time nothing we are seeing now is all that surprising or unpredictable.

About Thomas J. Pfaff

Thomas J. Pfaff is a Professor of Mathematics at Ithaca College. He created this website because he believes that sustainability, ranging from climate change to social justice, should be included in all courses whenever possible.

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