95,000 Excess U.S. Deaths during the Cold Months Each Year

Guest post by Indur Goklany

Now that the cold weather is here, we should remember that more Americans die during the cold months than at any other time of year, notwithstanding any global warming.

The figure below, which is based on data from the US National Center for Health Statistics for 2001-2007, shows that on average 7,200 Americans die each day during the months of December, January, February and March, compared to the average 6,400 who die daily during the rest of the year. On this basis, there were 95,000 “excess” deaths during the 121 days in the cold months (December to March, assuming a non-leap year).

So bundle up if you go outside, and keep warm indoors as well.

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays.

goklany-excess-us-deaths-due-to-cold

Figure 1: Average daily deaths for each month, United States, 2001-2007. Sources: 2001-2004 data from National Center for Health Statistics, DataWarehouse at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/datawh/statab/unpubd/mortabs/gmwkIV_10.htm, and National Vital Statistics Reports available at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/pubs/pubd/nvsr/nvsr.htm; 2005 data from Births, Marriages, Divorces, and Deaths: Provisional Data for 2006, Volume 55, Number 20. 6 pp. (PHS) 2007-1120; 2006-2007 data from Births, Marriages, Divorces, and Deaths: Provisional Data for 2007.  NVSR Volume 56, Number 21. 6 pp. (PHS) 2008-1120.

About these ads

66 thoughts on “95,000 Excess U.S. Deaths during the Cold Months Each Year

  1. It would be interesting to have this number as a function of the year, starting from 1970 or so?

    another global warming proxy might appear.

  2. Understanding the AGW alarmists.
    ——————————————————-
    Cognitive Dissonance

    http://web.mac.com/sinfonia1/Global_Warming_Politics/A_Hot_Topic_Blog/Entries/2008/8/19_Cognitive_Dissonance.html

    “I must ask a very serious and urgent question of our media. Why do you continue to talk glibly about current climate ‘warming’ when it is now widely acknowledged that there has been no ‘global warming’ for the last ten years, a cooling trend that many think may continue for at least another ten years? How can you talk of the climate ‘warming’ when, on the key measures, it isn’t? And now a leading Mexican scientist is even predicting that we may enter another ‘Little Ice Age’ – a ‘pequeña era [edad] de hielo’.”

    “Such media behaviour exhibits a classic condition known as ‘cognitive dissonance’. This is experienced when belief in a grand narrative persists blindly even when the facts in the real world begin to contradict what the narrative is saying. Sadly, our media have come to have a vested interest in ‘global warming’, as have so many politicians and activists. They are terrified that the public may begin to question everything if climate is acknowledged, on air and in the press, not to be playing ball with their pet trope (AGW).”

  3. Yeah, global warming is menice to life on earth. It kills everything from germs to humans. I would much rather prefer massive global cooling. At least we would’nt feel anything below -75F degrees. Hypothermia does wonders for the senses.

  4. How could anyone, intelligently make the argument, warm is more deadly then cold, when that data plainly shows the winter (cool) is more deadly then the summer (warm)?

  5. I much appreciate British humor (humour).
    ————————————————————-
    Climate change summits like Poznan and Brussels will cost us the earth

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/personal-view/3743591/Climate-change-summits-like-Poznan-and-Brussels-will-cost-us-the-earth.html

    “The outcome was a compromise,…under which the targets would be nominally retained but the means of achieving them – sharp rises in the cost of carbon-based energy – abandoned.”

    “So onto Poznan, where,…all that emerged on the global warming front was a great deal of hot air,…”

    “Increases in world carbon prices need not be large – say a $0.01 initial increase in the price of a gallon of gasoline that rises by $0.02 every three years”. At that rate, it would take the US more than 350 years to reach the level of petrol tax we already have in the UK.”

    “The first report of the UK’s Committee on Climate Change,…The 480 pages certainly make up in quantity for what they conspicuously lack in intellectual quality.”

    “Since the committee uses the same methodology and indeed the same model as the Stern Review (which was not peer-reviewed), it is hardly surprising that it comes to the same conclusion. It reminds me of the man who, concerned about the authenticity of a report in his newspaper, bought a second copy of the paper to confirm it.”

    “…welcome to the new science paradigm, in which effects precede cause. I have to confess my own limitations. Unlike Mr Al Gore, Lord Stern, and Lord Turner, I do not know what is going to happen to the planet in the next 100-200 years. But I do know nonsense when I see it.”

  6. Let’s see now.

    Which month would I rather experience; January, which has roughly an extra 1,000 deaths each day, or August? Hmmm, that’s a tough one…

    Not!

    Now, when I look outside my window, there’s still a snow dune (snow drift sounds too wimpy compared to what I’m seeing) crossing a sidewalk I’ve still got to shovel. This is gonna be a loooooong season.

    Bring on global warming.

    As if we have any say in the matter.

  7. Brrrrrr.
    Just breaking the icicles off the keys, long enough to wish the WUWT community a hearty Merry Christmas.

    And God bless us, everyone.

  8. I think the cold month v. warm month statistics can be explained by this premise:

    In the summer we expect warm temperatures. All seems normal. We do not expect warm temperatures in the winter.

    The added winter deaths are due to high temperatures from AGW. This confounds our primitive brain which has evolved to expect cold weather in the winter.

    Unable to cope with milder winters, our will to live is eroded, and deaths rise.

    Public education can correct this. We must persuade more people to die in the hottest months as a protest against the heat. To survive the milder winters an anti-depressant can be taken.

  9. Would anyone care to comment on the sea ice extent plot? We hit a new high for all values plotted for the date and then suddenly a right turn to the minimum of same.
    Unprecedented in the dataset and to my way of thinking, not credible.

    Somebody is cooking the books and burnt books smell very bad.

  10. Data matches well with UK’s experience: I understand they average 25,000 more deaths in the colder months – but I don’t know how that value was calculated.

    But AGW remains the biggest threat ….. Yeah. Right.

  11. Temperature and mortality in 11 cities of the eastern United States

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11772788

    Mortality increases with extreme hot weather in northern cities and extreme cold weather in southern cities. Unless you own an airconditioner in the north or a heater in the south.

    But airconditioners and heaters need nasty carbon polluting energy, which is going to kill us all.

    So your choice is die sooner from heat or cold, or die later from global warming.

  12. 1998 was a warm phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a warm phase in the cyclical PDO and a warm phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle. 2008 is a cold phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a cold phase in the cyclical PDO and a cold phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle.

    All of these cycles, including solar cycle 24, are going to eventually turn warm again in the next few years, and before 2012 the 1998 records will be solidly broken.

    The cognitive dissonance here is assuming that this time its going to be different in all these cyclical factors. The skeptical crowd needs to generate a major failure in solar cycles in order to avoid dealing with AGW. That is textbook cognitive dissonance.

  13. OFF TOPIC: HAS EVERYONE SEEN THIS

    Water vapor’s effects on atmosphere are debated

    By Greg Gordon, McClatchy Newspapers Greg Gordon, Mcclatchy Newspapers – Sun Dec 21, 6:00 am ET

    WASHINGTON — Ron Ace’s idea to cool the planet by evaporating water could provoke controversy because it collides head-on with a concern of environmental scientists: that water vapor is a potent greenhouse gas.
    A recent Texas A&M University study, based on satellite data from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration , warned that if water vapor levels in the atmosphere continue to rise, it “could guarantee” an increase of several degrees Celsius in the Earth’s temperatures over the next century.
    These scientists warned of potential “positive feedback,” in which water vapor traps heat near the surface, the warmer temperatures cause increasing ocean surface water to evaporate, producing even more water vapor, further heightening the trapping effect and beginning the cycle anew.
    Kenneth Caldeira , a climate scientist for the Carnegie Institution’s Department of Global Ecology at Stanford University whose computer simulation of Ace’s invention suggests it would significantly cool the planet, said that scientists are still trying to sort out the complicated role of water vapor.

    Among its mixed effects:

    — It absorbs latent heat near the earth’s surface and transports it to higher altitudes, for a cooling effect.

    — When it condenses at higher altitudes, it releases the latent heat, which then can radiate into space, producing more cooling.

    — It’s a greenhouse gas, trapping heat and causing warming.

    — It can form low clouds that reflect solar energy, a cooling effect.

    — It can form more high clouds, which block some sunlight but mostly prevent the release of infrared radiation from below, another warming effect.

    Robert Park , a retired University of Maryland physics professor, said scientists are right to worry that water vapor and other greenhouse gases could lead to thermal runaway — a cycle where two or more factors feed off another to propel temperatures higher — but that no one has proved that it’s occurring because the atmosphere is so complex. “This is what makes climate such a horrendously difficult thing to calculate . . . by far the most difficult calculation that man has ever attempted,” Park said.
    Ace hopes that his global cooling invention will help settle the matter.

  14. You should be happy for the heart healthy effects of shoveling snow. A report on studies on obesity in 20,000 doctors found that exercising enough to “break a sweat” three times a month reduced the risk of heart attack by 18%… roughly countering the increased risk of being 30 pounds over weight.

    Bring on the snow. I have 200 ft of 8 ft wide sidewalk around my store… I may never die.

  15. Here’s a graph from the UK showing all deaths during four years:-

    http://www.hpa.org.uk/web/HPAwebFile/HPAweb_C/1194947392655

    There is a slight doming effect for winter 06/07 and 07/08 but then these were very mild winters. They were also quite cold summers so there would be very little chance of heat related deaths. However, look at the winter peak for 99/00, almost double the average. That was a colder year for global temperatures and saw a spike in flu deaths.

    However when you look at this graph:-

    http://www.hpa.org.uk/web/HPAwebFile/HPAweb_C/1194947381241

    99/00 is dwarfed by 89/90.

    For a real shocker, (unrelated to temperature, sorry) look at the chart on page 4 of the Institute of Medicine’s report [770KB].

    1900-2003 All Cause Death Rates per 100,000 for Children and Teenagers by Age Group:-

    http://www.iom.edu/Object.File/Master/38/139/Carter%20Mecher.pdf

    The spike for child deaths in 1918 show how deadly influenza can be. If duplicated today it would wipe out the same number of kids as would normally die of all other causes for between 15-20 years! That pandemic killed the very young and the old but it also targeted young adults.

    That was H1N1 which, in a mutated form, still causes seasonal flu.

  16. A fair amount of people die from flu every winter in the UK making reports such as this;

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/3916367/GPs-extend-Christmas-hours-following-triple-winter-bugs-outbreak.html

    “The flu outbreak is the worst for a decade and internet search engine Google said twice as many people are searching for “flu” than is usual at Christmas.”

    seem to point to a good match for a lack of increased global warming since last century.

    I am sorry if I seem sarcastic, or even non-committal, regarding something as serious as the deaths of the most vulnerable humans, but I consider the cold, and proposals to “mitigate” a phantom menace, to be a threat that is orders of magnitude higher than that posed by the tiny, tiny warming we have “suffered” since the 19th century. It is well documented that we have far more to fear from the cold.

  17. Lamont, I think you may be missing the point.

    PDO, ENSO, Solar Cycle 24… Where is the human factor?

    This Earth may warm up or cool down, but, my 6 billion fellow humans and I will have no more affect on it than spitting on a forest fire.

  18. WestHoustonGeo,

    It might be unprecedented, but I believe what they are reporting is the truth. The Sea Ice has stopped growing for right now because several bodies of water that usually freeze over are not quite cold enough but they should be soon. The Sea of Okhotsk, The Labrador Sea, The Gulf of Saint Lawrence, and the Barentsz Sea. Don’t worry though, they will freeze up soon enough.

    As for Cognitive Dissonance and the like, I honestly wish I could say tell you all not to worry, but it seems to me that religious convictions are the dominent human trait and this is one of our national religions du jure, and we have officially entered an age of madness in our political casts. How long can we survive with lunatics, crooks and morons running the country? I do not know, but I do believe that we are about to find out.

  19. Frank Ravizza (21:51:33) :

    “How could anyone, intelligently make the argument, warm is more deadly then cold, when that data plainly shows the winter (cool) is more deadly then the summer (warm)?”

    You could make the argument as follows:
    When people of age are reaching the age of dying they are likely to postpone their dying until the miserable cold winter period. With global warming the winters will become less cold. And so why wait? Hence there is less preference for the winter and so the chance of the dying folks to close their eyes permanently in the summer will increase. Resulting in more deaths in the summer than before global warming.

  20. Lamont wrote:

    1998 was a warm phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a warm phase in the cyclical PDO and a warm phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle. 2008 is a cold phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a cold phase in the cyclical PDO and a cold phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle.

    All of these cycles, including solar cycle 24, are going to eventually turn warm again in the next few years, and before 2012 the 1998 records will be solidly broken.

    The cognitive dissonance here is assuming that this time its going to be different in all these cyclical factors. The skeptical crowd needs to generate a major failure in solar cycles in order to avoid dealing with AGW. That is textbook cognitive dissonance.

    If it’s cyclical, doesn’t that debunk AGW? The “A” supposedly stands for anthropogenic (man-made). Where’s the human factor in those cycles you named? Personally, I think temperatures have a quite way to go before they get above temperatures during the Roman Optimum, around 2° Celsius warmer if I recall correctly.

  21. Regarding the UK and deaths in winter/summer this press release by the National Statistics Office is very revealing http://www.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=480
    Quote
    On each of the ten days from Monday 4 August to Wednesday 13 August 2003, the numbers of deaths in England and Wales were above the average for those days over the last five years. There were 15,261 deaths over the period in 2003, 16 per cent (2,142) above the average for the last five years.

    The Central England Temperature peaked at 31.5°C (88.7°F) on 9 August. The average August daily maximum temperature in the south of England is around 21.2°C (70.2 °F). The number of deaths peaked at 1,696 on 11 August, 370 more deaths than the average for that day over the previous five years.

    The impact was greatest in the southern half of England, particularly in London, where deaths for all ages were 42 per cent (616) above the average. London experienced a maximum temperature of 37.9°C (100.2°F) on 10 August. In all regions, deaths for the 75 and over age group were above average levels. In the London region, deaths in the 75 and over age group were 59 per cent (522) above the average.

    In England and Wales during August as a whole, there were estimated to be 1,976 deaths above the average for that month over the last five years. Temperatures and mortality did increase in mid-July, but high temperatures were not sustained. Overall, there were fewer deaths than expected during that month.

    Although numbers of deaths in August 2003 were higher than the average in that month, the peak number on 11 August was still lower than typical daily mortality in the winter months. Over the last five years, December and January had daily averages of 1,725 and 1,872 deaths respectively. Average daily mortality in August 2003 (1,375 deaths) was also lower than annual average daily mortality over the whole of the previous five years (1,485 deaths).

  22. OK Lamont, before 2012; that’s earlier then Keenlyside et al predicts, and I think they missed the point; so, how much do you want to bet that 1998 temperatures are exceeded before 2012? The condition is, we use UAH records.

  23. Lamont (00:11:14) :

    Congratulations. Your discovery of natural cycles driving temperatures is more marvellous than the discovery of powered flight.

    Let us see, say within the ever popular metric of 30 years, how much greater the influence of the PDO is over even the cumulative effect of ENSO and solar. The very same PDO that was unmentioned/undiscovered in the Year of Al Gore 1998. The very same ocean cycles that cyclically emit, or cyclically fail to emit, their “heat” as a result of some mysterious mechanism deemed “definitely non-solar” by the anti-cycloons.

    As we are talking combined factors maybe we should place bets. As a dedicated cyclomaniac I am willing to bet that 1998 will not remain the “hottest” year in the record (sometime in the 2020ies possibly) as-
    1) our biosphere is rising, cyclically, out of a glacial period(again)
    2) CO2 levels have continued to climb higher year on year
    3)Solar cycles 24/25 power up

    Pick whichever part of my answer appears to yourself as sarcasm, and which dissonance (or arrogance, or even misdirection).

    All of the above is subject to Hansen’s secret recipe. One wonders how long 1998 will remain the hottest year in the (NASA/GISS) record if temperatures plummet over the coming decades.

  24. Lamont

    “1998 was a warm phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a warm phase in the cyclical PDO and a warm phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle. 2008 is a cold phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a cold phase in the cyclical PDO and a cold phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle.”

    What do you base this on? These three cycles are not known to be in sync. Is this your opinion or is it based on scientific fact? You predict that everything will change by 2012. What do you base that on? Do you have a peer reviewed article that you could reference?

    Perhaps AGW is real. The cognitive dissonance comes when you believe that a worldwide governing body regulating CO2 emissions will solve it. C’mon! UN is an example of such an organization. It’s littered with corruption and failures such as Rwanda, Darfur, Yugoslavia and “oil for food”. You cannot with a good conscience propose that such an organization is our salvation. Cognitive dissonance, indeed.

  25. Lamont,

    You keep coming back here with your weird belief that CO2 is a pollutant, but you refuse to examine the fallacy of that belief. As such, the fact that for the 80 million years of the Cretaceous period, the mean atmospheric CO2 content of 1700 parts per million, was six times greater than now and the average global temperature was just 4 °Centigrade than it is today. That is NOT runaway warming by any stretch of the imagination.

    Of course, I do not expect you to accept the research that has revealed that information, nor can we expect you to go away, because it appears not in your nature to heed the advice of wiser heads than yours.

  26. No, no, no! People! This isn’t about how many die now from warming-related deaths, but how many WILL die. It’s about our, and more importantly our childrens’ future, particularly once the ice caps melt, beginning with the Arctic which could be gone in five years. This will not only cause catastrophic rises in sea levels, particularly for islands such as Tuvalu, and many low-lying coastal cities but positive feedbacks due to albedo loss will lead to a chain reaction-type catastrophic loss of ice in the Antarctic, beginning with the West Antarctic ice sheet. This alone would yield a rise in sea level of more than 5 meters by 2095, according to the highly esteemed climatologist, James Hansen. Once runaway warming starts, and it may already have begun, climate catastrophe will be almost inevitable, leading to many, many millions, and eventually billions of deaths not only from extreme heat, but from drowning, disease, starvation due to crop loss, political unrest and climate-related wars, and numerous other causes. Do we REALLY want that on our heads? We need to stop using coal, and cut oil and gas usage drastically, and immediately begin building solar, wind, and geothermal- powered plants. Recycling should be required by law, and energy-wasters taxed severely. We can DO this! After all, we managed to go to the moon in ten years’ time. Now is not the time for naysayers. (Sarc OFF).
    Sorry for the pseudo-AGW rant. The AGW believers have circled the wagons, bolstered by the upcoming Obama presidency (not that a McCain presidency would have made much difference wrt climate policy). I remain hopeful that science, and truth will eventually prevail, but it appears it may be a long, tough battle.

  27. On the sea ice stasis, I will copy a post from the polar albedo thread:

    Go to cryosphere http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/

    and look at the individual maps . A lot of the stasis is coming from heating in the Greenland sea and environs.

    Go to

    We see there, between greenland and iceland , not a transport of heat, but a hot spot in the anomaly in December . Is one to think the sun has shone so hard there, during the longest night? Knowing that there is geothermal activity in the area (Iceland), seeing how local the spot is, it looks suspiciously as if there is geothermal heating coming up there.

    It is a hypothesis, but unfortunately the volcanic people are on a different wavelength than people worrying about AGW and other delusions , so it cannot be tested . When the new satellite ( UCU? ) which will be able to see gases down to sea surface is launched we will have online data that could prove or disprove such hypotheses ( AIRS it seems can only talk from 5000 meters up).

    At times there are mentions of heated waters on ocean bottoms, usually by marine scientists studying unusual life forms, and also now and then in the news one sees about new vents :

    http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2008-07/uow-sbr072408.php

    Well inside the Arctic Circle, scientists have found black smoker vents farther north than anyone has ever seen before. The cluster of five vents – one towering nearly four stories in height – are venting water as hot as 570 F.

    Dissolved sulfide minerals that solidify when vent water hits the icy cold of the deep sea have, over the years, accumulated around the vent field in what is one of the most massive hydrothermal sulfide deposits ever found on the seafloor, according to Marvin Lilley, a University of Washington oceanographer. He’s a member of an expedition led by Rolf Pedersen, a geologist with the University of Bergen’s Centre for Geobiology, aboard the research vessel G.O. Sars.

    The vents are located at 73 degrees north on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge between Greenland and Norway. That’s more than 120 miles from the previous northernmost vents found during a 2005 expedition, also led by Pedersen. Other scientists have detected plumes of water from hydrothermal vents even farther north but have been unable to find the vent fields on the seafloor to image and sample them.

    also in:

    http://www.livescience.com/environment/080724-black-smokers.html

    It is a wonderful world we are living in, and the scientists in it are real christians: their right hand does not know what their left hand does, as far as sharing knowledge.

  28. Are those of us who are not of the Global Warming faith really surprised that true believers seek the holy grail of a colder climate that is more deadly to human life? In their sick and twisted minds humans are the ultimate evil that needs to be destroy, and what better way to do that than to create a colder global climate that is unsuitable for man. To us carbon is the building block of life, to the GW faithful it is a pollutant that must be eliminated.

  29. Lamont,

    One issue with your hypothesis is that the PDO is a 30 year cycle. The previous warm cycle started in 1978 ended in 2007, so we are at the very beginning of the PDO cold cycle. It is very unlikely that the PDO will shift back to a warm cycle prior to 2012 so you won’t get the ‘perfect storm’ that we had in 1998 (which produced one of the strongest el Niinos on record followed by a 2-3 year la Nina). Solar Cycle 24 is looking like it will be far weaker than Cycle 23, which was pretty active.

    I’m also not sure that ENSO cycle length is predictable and I believe it is influenced by the PDO (and other events).

    In any case neither the PDO nor the ENSO seems to be influenced by atmospheric CO2 levels and the resultant changes in temperatures are entirely natural.

  30. Lamont:

    By what means are you so clairvoyant? Livingston and Penn would certainly dispute your claim that by 2012 the sun will be in anything like its normal warm cycle as they predict that by 2014 or 2015 there will be no sunspots at all.

    If solar magnetism turns out to be a potent driver of climate, will your clairvoyance may be faulty.

  31. Lamont (00:11:14) :
    All of these cycles, including solar cycle 24, are going to eventually turn warm again in the next few years, and before 2012 the 1998 records will be solidly broken.

    Yes, eventually things will warm up again…that is why they call them cycles…but warming by 2022 seems iffy…certainly suggesting that it will warm by 2012 sounds like you are whistling past the graveyard….however, what makes this interesting is we will all know for sure in just three years….I’m curious to see what becomes of the AGW religion if we are all snow bound at that point….cdl

  32. Thought this Cox and Forkum cartoon might capture the AGW’s conundrum – Iove it!

    Can’t figure out how to publish it here, so here’s the link:

    Hope it works. Merry Christmas, all, and here’s to a wonderful New Year!

    Special thanks, Anthony for all your work, balance, science acumen and hosting this wonderful forum.

  33. Lamont:
    “The cognitive dissonance here is assuming that this time its going to be different in all these cyclical factors. The skeptical crowd needs to generate a major failure in solar cycles in order to avoid dealing with AGW. That is textbook cognitive dissonance.”

    This is classic. Why do we need to “generate” something to avoid dealing with something that by your own words, doesn’t exist to begin with?
    If you believe it’s going to get warmer due to the cycles you mention, then there’s no “A” in AGW.

    JimB

  34. I was also baffled by the drop in sea ice. and suspected “adjustments”, but then took a closer look at SST anomolies in the arctic. Several very marm pools. Very large one off Labrador. Also between Iceland and Greenland. Given that Grteenland/Iceland are very active geothermal regions, the “culprit”, for low sea ice area/extent may well be unrelated to the air temperature. Several other “hot spots”, globally, but in general SSTs are cool. Ironic that volcanos cool the atmosphere, but heat the oceans. Thge climate is very complex, and searching for simple answers is a fruitless endeavor.

  35. Johnnyb (02:22:54) :
    As for Cognitive Dissonance and the like, I honestly wish I could say tell you all not to worry, but it seems to me that religious convictions are the dominent human trait and this is one of our national religions du jure, and we have officially entered an age of madness in our political casts. How long can we survive with lunatics, crooks and morons running the country? I do not know, but I do believe that we are about to find out.

    I have been carefully watching who is being appointed to run our upcoming government….they seem to be opposed to any form of energy that involves oil, coal or nuc…I conclude that we are embarking on a great experiment…to see what happens when you try and run an industrial economy without any visable or viable form of energy…it remains to be seen how far faith will take us when the lights go out………cdl

  36. Christmas dinner with Pachauri.
    ————————————————
    A UN-Approved Christmas Dinner

    http://www.spectator.org/archives/2008/12/23/a-un-approved-christmas-dinner

    “The dictatorship-dominated United Nations has its eye on our Christmas hams as a key source of allegedly man-made global warming and planetary suicide.”

    “We haven’t come to grips with agricultural emissions,” warned Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, head of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change…”

    “Farm flatulence and belching… “the trillions of farm animals around the world generate 18 percent of the emissions that are raising global temperatures, according to United Nations estimates, more than from cars, buses and airplanes.”
    ————————————————————-

    All the “flakes” of the winter season are not snow.

  37. Northwest Ohio

    To all Anthony’s fans:

    You are a clever funny lot!

    Could you manage to identify your state or country?

    When comments are made about your local weather –

    I’m so curious as to where you are on globe.

    Perhaps at the beginning of your comments.

    Thank you :0)

    BTW – It was minus 2 F a couple nights ago.

  38. Henry Galt: You are taking advantage of poor Lamont. You can’t loose your bet. 1998 is not the hottest year. it is 1934, as even Hansen has admitted.

    Sorry that I blew your cover, but poor Lamont needs all of the help he can garner. He has to be saved from his personal delusions by fair minded folks like us.

  39. Lamont
    The original Sin, as put forth by the high priests of the new religion, was that man-made carbon dioxide emissions are causing global warming. Man-made global warming has morphed into the mnemonic, AGW, and more recently, MMGW. The now head of the IPCC, Dr. Pachauri, has expanded the cause of global warming/climate change to include, first, bovine flatulence, and now swine and other farm animal flatulence. This is all a diversion from the original CO2 theory into the environmentalism argument that man is destroying the Earth’s environment and is responsible for all green house gas (GHG) emissions. The use of mnemonics confutes the general public as is its intent.

    Your argument admits that the natural solar cycle, the natural POD cycle and the ENSO cycle are the controlling factors in the environment over any imagined man-made cause.

    You are correct, this is a classic text book cognitive dissonance: when belief in a grand narrative persists blindly even when the facts in the real world begin to contradict what the narrative is saying.

  40. History shows the Little Ice Age was a much worse time to live than during the Medieval Warm Period. That’s why the Ministry of Information is so busy rewriting the history books. The MWP must be removed from our books, journals and memories or we’ll never accept the Greater Truth about AGW.

  41. A merry Christmas to all,

    Kathy,

    I live in southern Greece. We have had a very mild December (10 low 18 high), probably a degree or two higher in both the highs and the lows than average. We just got our first snow in the mountains around Athens and drizzle in town and temperatures dropped to 10 C in daytime and 4C at night. A white Christmas would be completely unusual. Usually Januaries are cold( highs 6 to 10C), Februaries are mild ( sometimes 18C degrees again) and March cold. I usually start swimming in the sea by the end of April beginning of May ( air temperatures 23C or so, water still cold).

  42. Lamont,

    1) PDO is a 60 year cycle, it will take 30 years or so to switch back to the warm side.

    2) If you think solar cycle 24 will be anywhere near as strong as solar cycle 23, then you haven’t been watching the sun lately.

    Break 1998’s record by 2012? Yeah right.

  43. Sorry this is OT but I wanted to inject a suggestion into the overall discussion. Perhaps Anthony or another moderator can place it in an appropriate place if merited.

    I wonder if we could institute a sort of “Windturbine (WT) Watch” where people that have occasion to observe WT installations could make note of how many of them are actually turning. For instance, as a pilot I would often fly over the large WT farm in the vicinity of Bedford, PA and notice that of the 30 or so turbines in the area I never saw all of them turning at once. If we could collect some figures like “6 of 8″ are turning at a particular location at a specified time and date we could get some feel over time for how many are down for maintenance, lack of wind, not needed, iced up, or other sorts of reasons and then begin to form some understanding of just how efficiently they are working.

    By no means a scientific study but a bit of a way to get a rough estimate of their contribution.

    Cheers,

    John

  44. Lamont (00:11:14) :
    1998 was a warm phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a warm phase in the cyclical PDO and a warm phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle. 2008 is a cold phase in the cyclical solar cycle, a cold phase in the cyclical PDO and a cold phase in the cyclical ENSO cycle.

    And what do you think drives those cycles?

    Under the resources tab you will find a posting by me pointing at solar impacts on ozone ( a greenhouse gas that the AGW models ignore), and how the ozone drives some of the weather cycles. The GHG thesis may well be right, you just have the wrong gas and the wrong cause for the variation.

    The skeptical crowd needs to generate a major failure in solar cycles in order to avoid dealing with AGW.

    See, here’s the difference between us. I don’t need to generate anything and I don’t want too. In fact I specifically abhor generated data. All I need to do is look at the solar output and trace where it changes things. To open my eyes and look at the natural unmodified and ungenerated state of things.

    Maybe you didn’t notice it, but the sun has been sleeping for about 2 years and we’ve had cold weather for about 2 years (and getting worse). The sun was very active for about the preceding 30 years and we had warm weather for 30 years (in line with prior cycles, nothing exceptional). Can you say cause and effect? No? I guess not…

  45. DocWat (01:02:42) :
    These scientists warned of potential “positive feedback,” in which water vapor traps heat near the surface, the warmer temperatures cause increasing ocean surface water to evaporate, producing even more water vapor, further heightening the trapping effect and beginning the cycle anew.

    I think I’ve been there! Gulfport in August!

    (Got out of the car in 99 degrees and 99% humid. Water started to condense on ME from the air… since I was cooler and below the dew point.)

  46. Johnnyb (02:22:54) :
    The Sea Ice has stopped growing for right now because several bodies of water that usually freeze over are not quite cold enough but they should be soon. The Sea of Okhotsk, The Labrador Sea, The Gulf of Saint Lawrence, and the Barentsz Sea. Don’t worry though, they will freeze up soon enough.

    I think you are exactly right on this. In many chaotic oscillating systems (things with stochastic resonance and hysteresis, for example) you get this behaviour, especially at inflection points. In stock trading these are called “battlegrounds”. What you are seeing, IMHO, is the ever colder poles ‘battling’ with the residual heat in the oceans. You get more volatility at these times (ice grows fast, then stops fast, then grows fast again) as the battle unfolds.

    In this case, with the sun taking a long nap, the cold will eventually win. But it is likely to take a couple of years to cool down enough ocean water to the point where spectacular polar freezes can run rampant.

    As for Cognitive Dissonance and the like, I honestly wish I could tell you all not to worry, but it seems to me that religious convictions are the dominent human trait and this is one of our national religions du jure, and we have officially entered an age of madness in our political casts. How long can we survive with lunatics, crooks and morons running the country? I do not know, but I do believe that we are about to find out.

    It has ever been thus. So not to worry. Remember the Mccarthy era? Witch hunting? Inquisitions (Spanish and otherwise)? Mao? The Civil War wasn’t exactly sane. The roman empire lasted a thousand years with lead levels that ought to have caused madness in the ruling classes.

    The fascinating thing is that the world survives it all. Hyperinflation in Germany post WWII, food riots in asia, empires enslaving half the world then collapsing, Latin American dictators and communistas swapping places every few decades and both repudiating external debt, and any currency they may have printed. Heck, even nuclear bombs dropped on Japan and Japanese biological weapons dropped on China.

    By comparison our crop of looneytoons are positively safe and sane ;-) So be of good cheer, pop open a bottle of beverage of your choice, and watch the show. If it gets too bad you just need to wait a while for the next lunacy to replace the present one. Give it two years and see what happens…

  47. davidgmills (06:01:02)
    If solar magnetism turns out to be a potent driver of climate, will your clairvoyance may be faulty.

    Davidgmills, you might want to look under the ‘resources’ button up top. At the end of the list is a post about ozone as climate driver. It may not be solar magnetism that is critical, but solar impact on ozone. We’re running about -20% to -40% down on ozone as the sun takes a nap, that opens a 9-10 micrometer radiation window and allows cooling. Bingo, sun driven cold and cold poles and all that we are seeing now.

    Some of this is speculation on my part, but there are citations of papers showing some of the xxO climate cycles are driven by ozone fluctuations.

    And none of this is in the climate models used by AGW fans.

  48. Craig D. Lattig (07:34:59) :
    I conclude that we are embarking on a great experiment…to see what happens when you try and run an industrial economy without any visable or viable form of energy…it remains to be seen how far faith will take us when the lights go out………cdl

    We’ve already done the experiment in California under Gov. Gray(out) Davis. After a period of a couple of years of rolling blackouts the rules get relaxed. I now own 2 standby generators. Small one for the short outages, big one for doing laundry & running A/C… Honda makes the best ones. The 1 kw is fine for basic needs (TV, satellite dish, Internet, Lights, small beer fridge, charging laptop and cellphone ;-) You also end up buying a lot of your electric energy from nearby states that have different rules. Soo…

    Buy stock in Canadian oil producers and refiners (PCZ is a good one, Petro Canada, or PWE or PGH for dividends from an oil /gas trust) and look for a sudden surge in coal powered electric generation being built on the Mexican side of the border from places like El Paso, San Diego, etc… (EWW is the Mexico exchange traded fund -in a new uptrend off a bottom, and FXM is the Mexican peso – presently ‘ringing down’ on a bottom against the dollar. Looks like a decent entry point to me for a long term investor.)

    If you can’t change it, you can still make money off of it, and that makes up for a lot of the grief. I also expect FAN, GEX, and PBW to gain under Obama (wind, solar funds) but it may take a while for them to move. Honda HMC will be a good entry just after the blackouts start. (I’d like to put a smiley on that, but I can’t…)

  49. Ed Scott (08:01:29) :
    Christmas dinner with Pachauri.
    “We haven’t come to grips with agricultural emissions,” warned Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, head of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change…”
    All the “flakes” of the winter season are not snow.

    LOVE the tag line! Wonder if we should break it to them that all those animal emissions came from CO2 extracted from the air… that, you know, it’s a cycle thing. Or that if the land were not farmed, the native plants reach a stable relationship with the litter fermenting to methane & CO2 but without the cow in between?

    Just don’t let them see the swamps of Louisiana and all that man made swamp gas! Oh wait, it’s natural swamp gas… that’s OK… Never Mind…

    I do wonder if anyone has pointed out that all the ‘green’ wetlands restoration projects are going to produce lots of swamp gas? I’m neutral on the projects (like the fishing, hate the mosquitos) I just find it funny that the rule for what’s acceptable is so, er, flexible…

  50. Bruce Cobb (05:34:28) :

    AGW = “Dead Meme Walking…”

    Cheer Up Bruce, the “Zomboid Theory” of “Man Made Emissions of CO2 Cause Catastrophic Global Warming” will fall over sooner or later.

    What we have to do is dodge is the raft of Government Taxes and Restrictions – and the popularity of both the Zombie and the Politicians will both take a dive once it really starts to hit people’s hip pockets.

    And lack of popularity is anathema to the modern political classes.

  51. E.M.Smith (14:09:09) :

    It may not be solar magnetism that is critical, but solar impact on ozone. We’re running about -20% to -40% down on ozone as the sun takes a nap, that opens a 9-10 micrometer radiation window and allows cooling. Bingo, sun driven cold and cold poles and all that we are seeing now.

    Interesting idea.

    G

  52. Mr. Smith back at ya.

    Here’s a link that shows that 50 years of data comparing cosmic flux to cloudiness confirms that on days of low cosmic flux there is a 20% greater chance of a cloudy day.

    http://www.met.rdg.ac.uk/~swshargi/WebStuff/Pubs/Abstracts/Harrison&Stephenson06.htm

    Some news releases describing the article:

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg18925365.700-cosmic-rays-linked-to-cloudy-days-.html

    http://www.innovations-report.com/html/reports/earth_sciences/report-54047.html

  53. Re: E.M.Smith (13:48:13)
    [It has ever been thus. So not to worry. Remember the Mccarthy era? Witch hunting? Inquisitions (Spanish and otherwise)? Mao? The Civil War wasn’t exactly sane. The roman empire lasted a thousand years with lead levels that ought to have caused madness in the ruling classes.
    The fascinating thing is that the world survives it all. Hyperinflation in Germany post WWII, food riots in asia, empires enslaving half the world then collapsing, Latin American dictators and communistas swapping places every few decades and both repudiating external debt, and any currency they may have printed. Heck, even nuclear bombs dropped on Japan and Japanese biological weapons dropped on China.
    By comparison our crop of looneytoons are positively safe and sane ;-) So be of good cheer, pop open a bottle of beverage of your choice, and watch the show. If it gets too bad you just need to wait a while for the next lunacy to replace the present one. Give it two years and see what happens…]

    E.M., your schadenfreude is showing. Is your middle name Pollyanna?

  54. Graeme Rodaughan (14:49:47) :
    E.M.Smith (14:09:09) :
    It may not be solar magnetism that is critical, but solar impact on ozone. [...]
    Interesting idea.

    Thanks! There are more pointers to resources under the ‘resource’ tab up top (at the bottom of the comments area) per ozone.

    I just also found that this link:

    http://www.gsfc.nasa.gov/topstory/20011207iceage.html

    also has an ozone rift in it:

    In this case, the low solar activity depicted by fewer sunspots) during the Maunder Minimum meant decreased UV radiation which impacted the protective ozone formation in the upper atmosphere (stratosphere). The changes, then, in the upper atmosphere, feed down to the surface climate and affect many systems, including the Arctic Oscillation/North Atlantic Oscillation. These are jet stream systems that would transport warmer air to America and Europe. SUPER: NASA / ESA

    So it looks like someone else beat me to the idea… No Nobel for me ;-)

    davidgmills (16:36:49) :
    Mr. Smith back at ya.
    Here’s a link that shows that 50 years of data comparing cosmic flux to cloudiness confirms that on days of low cosmic flux there is a 20% greater chance of a cloudy day.

    Please don’t get me wrong, I’m quite certain that cosmic ray flux and clouds go together and that “the sun did it”! I said ‘may not be critical’ not ‘is not important’!

    That both go in the same direction and at the same time and from the same cause helps both of them dispel the notion that the sun does not have enough influence to be the cause. Basically, CR flux doesn’t have to carry the whole burden alone and folks who say it can’t do it have to explain away BOTH the clouds AND the ozone mediated 10 micrometer cooling working together.

    Joseph (17:17:25) :
    E.M., your schadenfreude is showing. Is your middle name Pollyanna?

    I take no joy in the misery of others, I just think it’s important to make lemonade from all the lemons we have right now… and I guess I have to admit that I do like to ‘drown my sorrows’ from time to time by popping open a beverage and contemplating that in the long run we’re all dead so maybe it’s not so bad right now after all…

    Pollyanna? No, but perspective, yes. Our crop of loonytoons has yet to live up (live down?) to the criminals of the past… Then again, the century is young…

  55. E.M.Smith (13:48:13) :

    From the Wikipedia Ribbon Seal article mentioned earlier, I took the link to the Sea of Okhotsk article in which there is the paragraph below, that supports part of your remarks about variability.

    “In winter, navigation on the Sea of Okhotsk becomes difficult, or even impossible, due to the formation of large ice floes, because the large amount of freshwater from the Amur lowers the salinity and raises the freezing point of the sea. The distribution and thickness of ice floes depends on many factors: the location, the time of year, water currents, and the sea temperatures.”

    OT, any visit to Wikipedia can be a long duration event. The links are too intriguing.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenland_shark

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H%C3%A1karl

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%9Eorramatur

    Observe the Icelandic use of the old English letter þ “Thorn”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%9E

    Ye olde pizza parlour. Bah, humbug.

    A good Yuletide to everyone.

  56. John S:

    You are right ‘on topic’ when you ask about the usefulness of wind turbines for power generation in this thread.

    This thread is about probable mortality effects from AGW as a result of anthropogenic GHG emissions. And the AGW-scare is being used to justify progressive destruction of secure, reliable energy supplies. Many people will die as a result of it this destruction if it continues.

    I address the issue you raise in the item that can be accessed at

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/reprint/richard_courtney_2006_lecture.html

    Your specific question is answered in Table 1 on page 7 and the two paragraphs of text above it.

    And an overview of an assessment of the possible alternatives to windfarms for non-GHG-emitting power supplies is provided as its Section 14 on its pages 13 to 19.

    I hope this helps.

    Richard

  57. Mr. Smith:

    Well I have to admit I think that a decrease in solar magnetism may cause a number of factors all of which lead to a cooler climate.

    Not only cosmic radiation, but lessened UV to heat up the ionosphere and a gaping hole in the ozone. All could produce global cooling and combined could have a significant effect.

    We are seeing all three right now and man it has been cloudy and rainy here this winter. Heating degree days are well over normal. Anecdotally, of course.

  58. E.M.Smith (14:09:09) :” It may not be solar magnetism that is critical, but solar impact on ozone. We’re running about -20% to -40% down on ozone as the sun takes a nap, that opens a 9-10 micrometer radiation window and allows cooling. Bingo, sun driven cold and cold poles and all that we are seeing now.”

    According to the atmosphere composition link under “Resources” at the top of the page, O3 comprises only .07 parts per million of our total atmosphere. If we are to we scoff at the 386 ppm of CO2 as miniscule and not worthy of changing temperatures, shouldn’t we do the same for O3? Is there a way that O3 acts that allows such a tiny amount have an effect on the temps?

  59. Non-news. The extra deaths have not been attributed directly to cold weather. The Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays usually increase the stress factor on people and these deaths could be delayed results from increased stress during that time. Also, January tends to be a cash strapped month as people are paying for their Christmas excess. Finances are another major stress causing factor. This article does not tie in the extra deaths directly to cold weather. This article is just as bad as other main stream news media articles.

    Please post more newsworthy articles.

  60. “Please post more newsworthy articles.”

    Don’t worry, Anthony will continue posting more and more newsworthy articles!

  61. Daniel,

    There is a reasonable correlation between temperature and cold/heat related excess deaths, where the temperature band with the least mortality increases with average temperature of a region. Thus Finland has the least mortality around 17 degr.C, while in Athens it is around 25 degr.C.
    See Keatinge e.a.:

    http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/321/7262/670

    From that source:
    “Over the seven regions together, annual cold related deaths averaged 2003 per million compared with 217 per million heat related deaths (difference, P<0.001 by paired t test). ”

    Thus cold related mortality is about ten times more important than heat related mortality. With other words, a warmer climate saves lives…

    But that depends of how humans adapt(ed) to different climates. If it is just an physiological adaptation to changing temperatures or maybe (partly) genetic, as in the case of skin cancer case differences between pale Anglo-Saxon descents and dark skinned aboriginals in the Australian deserts…

Comments are closed.