1979 was a very important year in global warming science.
It was also the last year the Washington NBA franchise went to the finals, and Pittsburgh ruled the sports world with the We Are Family Pirates winning the World Series and the Steelers defeating a gutsy Los Angeles Rams franchise in the Super Bowl. Donna Summer and Gloria Gaynor dominated the Pop Music Charts, and Jimmy Carter bemoaned the malaise that afflicted America.
On the weather front, the World Meteorological Association issued a declaration from their meeting in Geneva, Switzerland that included the appeal "to foresee and to prevent potential man-made changes in climate that might be adverse to the well-being of humanity." Later, the WMO joined with the United Nations Environment Programme to form the International Panel on Climate Change, the U.N. panel whose global warming predictions have been discredited by the earth's failure to warm.
Another major event was the launch of a satellite system designed to track global temperatures and other environmental phenomena like the health of the polar ice caps.
Today, we have the benefit of reviewing 36 years of satellite data detailing the shrinking or increase of the polar ice caps, and the results are amazing.
The global ice area is virtually the same today as it was in 1979.
After all the worry about polar bears dying from lack of sea ice habitat (Note: Polar bears may well be more abundant today than in 1979.) and carbon-dollar-capturing Al Gore, Jr.'s dire prediction of the total disappearance of the Arctic ice cap by 2013 and the resulting rising tides, it turns out that there has been little, if any, change.
What's more, the satellite system, which - unlike ground monitoring stations - is not impacted by localized variants caused by development, has found that the global warming pause now stands at 17 years. In fairness, the average temperatures are higher than all but a couple of years between 1979 and 1988, but the predicted escalation of temperatures that undergirds the entire push for massive changes to the world's electricity generation system are paltry.
With polar ice caps remaining stable since the beginning of the global warming crisis, and the earth's temperatures stubbornly refusing to rise for almost two decades, despite increasing carbon emissions, every assumption used by the Environmental Protection Agency to justify their regulatory assault on America's legitimate energy sector needs to be rethought.
Little did those who launched the climate satellite in 1979 know that they were putting into place the scientific data collection technology that changed everything in the global warming debate. One wonders what it feels like to be hoisted on one's own petard.
Rick Manning is the president of Americans for Limited Government.