Enlarge (credit: NASA)
If people who reject climate science ever point to actual data, you can just about bet the farm it will be data from satellite measurements of upper-atmosphere temperatures.
At least until the record-setting global heat in 2015 and 2016, some of the satellite data was amenable to the claim that global warming had magically ended in 1998.
That was always nonsense, involving cherry-picking a start year and ignoring ongoing corrections to the complex satellite measurements.
That said, it is certainly fair to compare the satellite records to climate models to see what we can learn.
In the early 2000s, a run of La Niña years temporarily held global temperatures slightly below the long-term trend.
The climate model projections prepared for the 2013 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, which projected temperatures using future scenarios from 2000 to 2005 forward, ran a little above the satellite data.
Is that just because of the La Niña conditions in the Pacific, or are the models off in some way?
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