An American-Canadian Treasure

An American-Canadian Treasure


The Great Lakes have one of the longest hydrographic records in North America.

It’s amusing, but also tragic, to see how the National Geographic magazine has attempted to use the Great Lakes in its efforts to promote CO2 as the cause of climate change.

Again, in this month’s issue, they have highlighted pictures that supposedly show the effects of climate change. One picture is of a woman standing on a spit of land in India’s Ganges River Delta, with water swirling around her, with the caption, “Conditions that could possibly be attributed to climate change.”

A few years ago, they used similar pictures from the Great Lakes to show that the Great Lakes were drying up due to climate change. They retain these articles on their website.

One article is entitled Down the Drain, with the headline:

“The Great Lakes hold a fifth of Earth’s surface fresh water, and they’ve shrunk dramatically. If it keeps up, shipping and fisheries could be left high and dry.” (Emphasis added.)

The National Geographic is not alone in ignoring science.

For example, the editor of Power Magazine had to issue a retraction over his claim that the oceans would rise 11.9 feet in 100 years and threaten Florida. (The actual text has been removed from the magazine’s archives.)

Fortunately, science, combined with some critical thinking, can be used to examine these absurd claims. For example, the editor of Power Magazine had to issue a retraction after a reader brought his incorrect statement to light.

In the case of the Great Lakes, there is a record of surface water levels going back to the 1800s.

Great Lakes, historic hydrographic record Great

Lakes, historic hydrographic record

The charts show that nearly all the Great Lakes are above their long-term average levels.

The charts show that water levels in all the Great Lakes have varied over the past century and a half.

  • Lake Superior had its lowest water level in 1926.
  • Lakes Michigan-Huron had their lowest water levels in 1964.
  • Lake Erie had its lowest water levels between 1934 and 1936.
  • Lake Ontario had its lowest water level in 1965.

When all the lakes are viewed together, it’s clear that levels have risen and fallen for various reasons since 1860.

There is no apocalypse due to global warming.

Perhaps even more threatening than media attempts to scare people is the attempt by the EPA to use the Great Lakes as a climate change indicator.

This is an outrageous effort by the government to influence people about a political issue.

The EPA’s attempt is pathetic since their evidence refutes their use of the Great Lakes as a climate change indicator, despite their attempt to distort the actual historic record.

The EPA website is especially pernicious, because it should be a trustworthy source, not an Orwellian purveyor of misinformation.

For those interested in evaluating the above comments for themselves, the links to the historic record and the EPA’s attempt at influencing people are shown here:

For Historic record:

For EPA climate indicator page:

For National Geographic article, Down the Drain:

The Great Lakes are a national treasure, not a climate barometer.

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8 Replies to “An American-Canadian Treasure”

  1. Morning Donn,

    Thanks for the insightful post! I hadn’t recalled the editor of Power removing a reference to the sea level rise. President Obama recently talked about a 3 foot sea level rise during his speech in Milan- Obama “Speech & Interview Milan 5/9/2017-

    it sounds like he has predicted (claimed) that a 3 foot increase in sea levels is going to happen from our past sins- the discussion on sea level starts at about 25 minutes into the video. It would be interesting to find out if the president used the same source as the editor of Power redacted.


    • The IPCC has projected an 11 inch rise by the end of the century from thermal expansion. Recent satellite projections are for a 10 inch rise.
      Anything greater than these projections is pure speculation about glacier melt and hype.
      Thanks for the additional information.

  2. Donn,
    This is something I threw together for my children/grandchildren a few years ago after a discussion of why Lake George and some of the eastern Great Lakes are slightly acidic. As you know it’s blamed on power plant emissions from the 50’s. The truth is that the glaciers scraped away most of the sediment layers in this region leaving exposed various intrusive rock types that cause these lakes to have a lower pH than those farther west. In addition to discharge data the Canadians and the State of NY have lots of water data going back prior to the industrial revolution. Somewhere I have an analysis and if I can find it I’ll forward it to you.

    Following is a short report on ocean acidification.

    The Myth of Ocean Acidification
    Contrary to claims by global warming advocates that carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are acidifying the oceans this belief is not supported by science or empirical data. The world’s oceans cover nearly 70% of the surface of the globe and their pH has varied widely over its 4.5-billion year history. By mass, seawater is composed mainly of Oxygen (86%), Hydrogen (11%) and lesser amounts of dissolved solids which control the pH of the water.
    Seawater is naturally alkaline with a mean of 8.1 pH units globally, ranging between 7.5 and 8.4; freshwater by contrast has a pH of 7 (neutral). The pH scale is logarithmic and as a result each higher whole pH value above 7 is ten times more alkaline than the next lower whole value. Oceans may become more or less alkaline but not acidic unless their pH drops below 7 which has never been recorded ANYWHERE in any ocean since measurements have been recorded.
    Atmospheric CO2 dissolves, hydrolyses, and protolyses in ocean water and combines with calcium to precipitate solid calcium carbonate, forming seabed sediments. Carbon dioxide partitioning between air and water is governed by Henry’s Law (p = kHc), resulting in some 50 times more CO2 in water than in air at equilibrium. The ocean’s natural carbonate system buffers pH to a value around 8.16. Together with other mineral buffers they add up to an almost infinite pH buffer capacity (Stumm, W. & Morgan, J.J. 1970: Aquatic Chemistry, Wiley).
    This is truly settled science; Henry’s law, one of the laws of physics, was formulated by English chemist William Henry in 1803.
    There are not enough fossil fuels stored in the earth to cause a doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere if released through combustion or other means (Jaworowski, Z., Segalstad, T.V. & Hisdal, V., 1992: Atmospheric CO2 and global warming: a critical review, 2nd rev. ed. Norsk Polarinstitutt Meddelelser [Norwegian Polar Institute Memoirs]). Therefore, there is no feasible mechanism to cause the oceans to become acidic from carbon dioxide releases to the atmosphere.

  3. Thanks for the information.
    It’s very important and is something I have been wanting to write about, but wanted to be sure of my information.
    The alarmists have flooded, pardon the pun, the media with a plethora of misinformation. So much so that it’s very difficult to refute all of it.
    As a result, the casual observer, i.e., the American public, has gotten a very warped idea about climate change, global warming and CO2.
    Your information is solid science that helps refute the junk science published by the alarmists.

  4. Donn, thanks for the insightful article, exposing the inaccurate claims associated with climate change. These false claims are only possible with a complicit media who share the agenda with the progressives. Does Obama know he is lying when he makes such outrageous claims on Sea level rise or does he really believe the false claims? We have a significant challenge to get back to a more fact based society. Thanks for your efforts.

    • Thanks for your comments.
      The media is so corrupt at this point, we can’t rely on the media to get the facts to Americans. Thst’s why articles such as mine need as wide a distribution as possible.

  5. Good work don

    It’s blatantly obvious the big brother wants more of our hard-earned money in spoofing morons on climate change In being a human induced problem should be a sin. Of course boobus americanus with no concept of scientific reasoning will run with it because they have no concept of climatology the scientific method or Paleo geology. The unfortunate truth is that most people are too lazy to actually think they need corrupt officials to do that for them. It’s too bad when they were in school they didn’t apply themselves and now are the sheep which unfortunately have a vote.

    I don’t understand why people do not question supposed authority and I really don’t understand how people can’t understand they’re being played as fools. Oh well I guess we should give them bread and provide circuses as they watch the decimation of Western society

    • Thanks John. Great comments. It’s difficult to understand why people don’t think critocally about what they are being told. Your reference to sheep is very appropriate.