GISS: World’s airports continue to run warmer than ROW

Guest post by John Goetz

AIRLNRAD1As noted in the previous post, GISS has released their monthly global temperature summary for June, 2009. This month’s whopping anomaly of 0.63C is once again much higher than that of RSS, UAH, and even NOAA, which is the source of the GISS temperature data. Not only is the anomaly higher than the other metrics, but it is trending in the opposite direction.

Temperature data from 1079 stations worldwide contributed to the analysis, 134 of them being located in the 50 US states. Data from essentially the same few stations have been used for the past twenty-four months. Many, many hundreds of stations that have historically been included in the record and still collect data today continue to be ignored by GISS in global temperature calculations.

Once again, the bulk of temperatures comprising the present-day worldwide GISS average come from airports – in this case 554 airports, according to the NOAA metadata from the V2 station inventory. In the US, the ratio of airports to total stations continues to run very high, with 121 out of the 134 reporting stations being located at airports.

Why worry about airports? Aside from recent posts on this site documenting problems with airport ASOS equipment in the US, WUWT has also documented a number of equipment siting problems, notably the typical close proximity of the equipment to a tarmac heat sink. Airports can introduce a mini-UHI effect where one would otherwise not be found.

The NOAA metadata is not entirely accurate, and several stations located at airports are not noted as such. Some examples include Londrina and Brasilia in Brazil, Ely / Yelland in Nevada, and Broome in Austrailia. Those stations were easy to find because they had “airport” (or some variant) in the station name. A check of coordinates using Google Earth confirmed the airport locations.

Let’s examine the metadata a little further, shall we?

NOAA says that 345 of the stations it passes on to GISS are rural and presumably free of UHI influence. Fifteen of those stations are located in the US. However, only 201 of those rural stations are not located at an airport, and therefore presumably free of UHI effects (including tarmac heat sinks). In the US, only one of the fifteen stations is listed as both rural, and not located at an airport: Ely / Yelland in Nevada.

Doh!!! As noted above, that station is located at an airport – confirmed not just by Google Earth, but also by NOAA’s NCDC website as well! This means that all of the US temperatures – including those for Alaska and Hawaii – were collected from either an airport (the bulk of the data) or an urban location.

As for the rest of the world, some of the stations listed as being rural and not at an airport have metadata indicating they are located in an area of “dim” or “bright” lights. Filtering those out, we find a total of 128 stations that are rural, not at an airport, and “dark”.

Why are “dark” stations important? Recall that GISS uses dark stations to adjust for UHI in the urban stations. With only 128 dark stations available, none being in the US, it would seem this is an impossible task.

Fortunately, GISS adjustment rules allow old data to be used in adjusting new data. The older “non-reporting” rural weather stations continue to adjust reporting urban stations, even though the most recent two years of overlap is missing.

Thankfully, the algorithms are robust enough to calculate adjustments to the 100th of a degree even when data is missing.

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137 thoughts on “GISS: World’s airports continue to run warmer than ROW

  1. Where can one find the station list? It would be interesting to look it over. There are probably more crypto-airports. For example in Sweden many seemingly “rural” sites are actually at military airfields.

    Reply: It is not posted anywhere, but was not that hard to determine. I filtered the v2.mean file for all entries that had valid June, 2009 temperatures. I further filtered that with the list of stations actually used produced by GISS.

  2. Its funny how IPCC believes “UHI has no impact at all!!”
    – and yet GISS just “happens” to choose only stations with good possibility for UHI.

    I hope the whole world will wake up soon. I miss real science from the good old days.

  3. This is like receiving an economic report from the USSR tabling the great economic results, while ignoring the people lined up for their bread ration.

    Must keep doctor Hansen happy, science and accuracy has nothing to do with it.

  4. This GISS is unfortunately symbolic of “civilisation” run amok. We’re back to Stalinism: cut, paste, fabricate, make up and manipulate data until it supports the agenda of a few nutjobs in high places. Rewrite history if you have to! It doesn’t get more perverse than that. Yes, that’s how I feel about GISS and NOAA – they’re bunch of science perverts. Makes you want to vomit, doesn’t it.

  5. Latest developments:
    Heated runways to keep them ice free.
    Bigger aircraft, bigger engines, bigger ground support vehicles, bigger buildings, more asphalt, more heat, all at the same location of the weather station.

    It’s called progress and we would like to keep it this way.

    So it’s time to kick the morons and scare mongers out of office and get to work again.

    We have real problems to solve and our climate is not one of them.

  6. “WUWT has also documented a number of equipment siting problems, notably the typical close proximity of the equipment to a tarmac heat sink.”

    I wonder?

  7. Seems somehow appropriate, today. Showed up in my email queue from poethunter.com:

    “Weather”

    Once I dipt into the future far as human eye could see,
    And I saw the Chief Forecaster, dead as any one can be–
    Dead and damned and shut in Hades as a liar from his birth,
    With a record of unreason seldome paralleled on earth.
    While I looked he reared him solemnly, that incandescent youth,
    From the coals that he’d preferred to the advantages of truth.
    He cast his eyes about him and above him; then he wrote
    On a slab of thin asbestos what I venture here to quote–
    For I read it in the rose-light of the everlasting glow:
    “Cloudy; variable winds, with local showers; cooler; snow.”

    Ambrose Bierce

  8. If the Honolulu airport data influences a large part of the Pacific, that might explain the discrepancy this month.

  9. I mean his fallback cover story will be that he shifted GISS to use more ocean data in mid 2008 because of ‘problems’ with land data, including UHI around airports.

    I think he had a panic attack in Jan last year, stacked a 0.5C rise on the data, realised it wouldn’t fly, and fudged it for a couple of months. Then realised he’d be found out by numerical fingerprinting and started using a heavier bias of ocean data to prop up the anomalies.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:2003.5/to:2009.5/plot/gistemp/from:2003.5/to:2009.5/offset:-0.2/plot/hadsst2gl/from:2007.5/to:2009.5/scale:1.7/offset:-0.25

  10. Anthony.

    ” Thankfully, the algorithms are robust enough to calculate adjustments to the 100th of a degree even when data is missing”.
    Is your tongue firmly in your cheek?

    REPLY: Note the post is by my friend John Goetz – A

  11. Could we start a campaign to educate Bill O’reilly on Fox News. He believes GISS and Jim Hansen. Glenn Beck has tried to explain what is going on, but Bill is six cookies short of a dozen. He repeated the GISS nonsense again, yesterday, July 14. His email is oreilly@foxnews.com.

    Jeff

  12. On the local news last night in Oklahoma, I noticed the temperature difference in Tulsa vs. the surrounding areas. The Tulsa news station I watch gets their temperature info from the Tulsa International airport. Temp last night was 12 degrees higher in Tulsa than it was where I live, which is about 45 miles east. In fact, Tulsa was at least 6 degrees hotter than any surrounding communities in ANY direction!!! That is the definition of a heat island. Those are not typo’s. That was a full twelve degrees difference!

  13. Regarding the BBC blog Frank mentioned: I had a quick look and discovered that it’s an article about an article in Spectator about Ian Pilmer’s book. Intentionally sarcastic, it was reviewed in the Spectator by Delingpole because Pilmer is one of a ‘dying breed who concedes nothing in climate change.’ The only point in the BBC article as far as I can see is to add that Moonbat has compiled a list of basic errors and finds it laughable.

  14. Thanks John for this article. I have noticed that the local record high temperatures of the day usually comes from airports here in Europe and I was wondering what is the percentage of surface stations located at airports.

    I know that surfacestations.org aims mainly at the US stations but I was wondering what is the status in the rest of the world.

    Frankly, it doesn’t seem scientifically plausible to compare today’s world temperatures with the ones recorded 80 years before when nowadays a large percentage of surface stations are located at airports. It is not that we have covered 50% of Earth’s surface with airports.

    Anyway, as Flanagan says, the bulk of the discrepancy can be explained by the warming of the south pole, where the bulk of the world’s airports are, I guess.

  15. “the science is in” Lets go for the numbers that support the presuppositions

    Same goes for models. Lets chose those that fit our expectations.

    Now if Hansen uses these, He can just get all huffy and claim, “How dare you question my numbers or conclusions” He is THE scientist of course.

    I have an aunt that has translated the bible in the jungle for several languages. The point she makes is this is how the local witch doctors operate. Bringing in just a few antibiotics or sutures causes them to go into threats and hysteria. A well supplied first aid kit threatens them to the core.

    Some middle school science students with a few instruments may be intimidating. Just a thought. Of course the sun cranks out so much heat and the runnways according to an engineering friend who is also my yacht club neighbor they are incredibly thick. In our local airport, we have somewhat regular deliveries of huge airplane parts by the Russian freightors. A modified 124 record load of 253.82 tonnes of cargo landing with several dozen tires sending all kinds of smoke from friction when it lands. Even with a lighter cargo, the heat is massive. A couple of points. The runway is incredibly thick to carry this impact. It retains heat because of it’s mass.

  16. Or this from Hansen.

    Page 673– even Hansen says there is unexplained warming in the ’40’s Arctic

    “The model’s fit with peak warmth near 1940 depends in
    part on unforced fluctuations, e.g., the runs of Hansen et al.
    (2005b), with nearly identical forcings to those in this
    paper, appear to agree better with observations. As expected,
    the runs in which the solar forcing includes only the
    Schwabe 11-year solar cycle (Fig. 4), available on the
    GISS web-site and included in Table 2 as AltSol, do not
    produce peak warmth near 1940. AltSol also differs from
    the standard ‘‘all forcing’’ scenario in having the sulfate
    forcing reduced by 50%, thus yielding an 1880–2003 global
    warming of 0.64C.
    It may be fruitless to search for an external forcing to
    produce peak warmth around 1940. It is shown below that
    the observed maximum is due almost entirely to temporary
    warmth in the Arctic. Such Arctic warmth could be a
    natural oscillation (Johannessen et al. 2004), possibly unforced.”

    http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/docs/2007/2007_Hansen_etal_3.pdf

  17. Anybody that doubts the Heat Island Effect of airports (especially major urban ones with hundreds of acres of tarmac or concrete heat sinks) needs only be around one for a couple of years.

    I worked in the environs of IAH (Houston’s “big” airport) for 17 years, directly under the southerly flight path (I forget the runway number but it was around 180). Every afternoon at about 3:15 a KLM “heavy” (a 747 combi) loaded with frreight would pass directly over our headquarters building and I swear that you could count the rivets on the landing gear doors. Visions of that little KLM incident on Tenerife.

    The massive amount of surface area in concrete and tarmac created a thermal “mountain” in the heat of the day, especially in the summer, and you could watch the thunderheads build around this little thermal mountain range every afternon starting around about 2 pm.

    [On a related note, there was one of those Wacky Mega Projects proposed in the 1970’s to PAVE (actually, spray a thin layer of bitumen) in a wide strip across North Africa, say 50 -100 miles form the coast, to create a thermal mountain range to suck wet air off of the Med. France, Italy and Greece weren’t too happy, since if it worked, their Med coastal rains would likely have disappeared. In any case, “Maghreb” and “major civil works” have not appeared in the same sentence since Carthage, so it never happened.

    In my view, there’s nothing particularly wrong with having weather stations proximate to these Heat Islands, UNLESS of course you plan to use the “data” as the basis of GLOBAL CLIMATE STUDIES.

  18. Porto Alegre…Brasil
    Station Information from GHCNv2 Inventory

    country: 303
    wmo_identifier: 83967
    mod: 000
    name: Porto Alegre
    latitude: -30.00
    longitude: -51.18
    elevation: 3
    elev_interpolated: 30
    population_type: Urban (population > 50,000)
    *****population_in_thousands: 1109……………….MORE…4000
    topography_type: Flat
    vegetation_type: No information
    location_type: Within 30 km from the coast
    distance_to_coast: 5
    *****is_at_airport: Not at an airport……………….AIRPORT
    dist_to_airport: -9…???????
    grid_vegetation: Warm Grass/Shrub

  19. Frank Lansner (06:10:04) :

    OT:
    BBC blog refelcting on frontpage, Spectator, “Global warming is a myth”:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/climatechange/2009/07/anyone_seen_the_front_page.html

    Havent read it yet..

    Thanks for the posting Frank.

    It’s a scandalous frontal attack to Plimer’s reputation, us skeptics and deniers, Spectator and science.

    We are used to this kind of BS from from the BBC but I really hope Plimer will take them into court.
    It has become clear that GB now has become a Satellite State of the new Russia.

  20. Well here’s a helpful explanation from a RealClimate poster
    I think it’s James Hansen or Al Gore as some guy named Wayne?

    He predicts “Global temperatures may be highest in history soon.”

    I’ll take the lead on this and establish something new.
    Instead of History we need a GISStory category.

    Yes, soon global temperatures may be highest in GISStory.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/07/warminginterrupted-much-ado-about-natural-variability/

    153. wayne davidson says:
    14 July 2009 at 8:44 PM
    Warming Interrupted? Seas responsible?? Well , June just past was 2nd warmest in history, with the southern Hemisphere being 2nd warmest as well… A contradiction?

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata/SH.Ts.txt

    So I await some convincing conviction statement on this temperature pause. Seems that current El-Nino is poised to surpass 1998 one, if this trend holds, Global temperatures may be highest in history soon.

  21. Frank Lansner (06:10:04) :

    “Havent read it yet..”
    I shouldn’t bother; it’ll only turn your stomach. Or at least the comments will. On second thoughts, go look at the guy calling himself “yeah … whatever”. At one stage he was demonstrating his ignorance by confusing CO and CO2. That posting seems to have disappeared but the rest of his stuff is pure vitriol and as far as I can see has not an ounce of scientific sense in it.
    Still it can only embarrass his fellow-alarmists which is all to the good, I suppose.

  22. Maybe OT, but it seems that cries about the icecaps melting have not been heard this summer, at least in the sites I frequent…

  23. Cathy (06:08:23) :

    I love Ambrose Bierce. Here’s a nice definition (Devil’s Dictionary) which fits Dr. Hansen, Gore et al very nicely…

    IDIOT, n.
    A member of a large and powerful tribe whose influence in human affairs has always been dominant and controlling. The Idiot’s activity is not confined to any special field of thought or action, but “pervades and regulates the whole.” He has the last word in everything; his decision is unappealable. He sets the fashions and opinion of taste, dictates the limitations of speech and circumscribes conduct with a dead-line.

  24. Bill: then you cannot accuse media of alarmism, can you? The Antarctic is slightly higher than last year and than average) and the Arctic is lower than last year (way below average)

    or

    for a comparison with last year extent.

  25. Sorry Vincent: what a load of BS I actually read this article in the Spectator (australian version) It definitely was not intentionally sarcastic (that is by Delingpole)

    “Vincent (06:25:46) :

    Regarding the BBC blog Frank mentioned: I had a quick look and discovered that it’s an article about an article in Spectator about Ian Pilmer’s book. Intentionally sarcastic, it was reviewed in the Spectator by Delingpole because Pilmer is one of a ‘dying breed who concedes nothing in climate change.’ The only point in the BBC article as far as I can see is to add that Moonbat has compiled a list of basic errors and finds it laughable.”

  26. “GISS adjustment rules allow old data to be used in adjusting new data”

    And the new data is used to adjust the old data.

  27. What is this, Anthony. I can’t believe it. NASA’s GISS doctoring temperature data to make Earth seem warmer?!?! Nooo. Who is the head of GISS? Oh, Dr. James Hansen, you say? Ah, that explains it.

    As Pierre Gossilen (5:54) writes:”SCIENCE PERVERTS”, with supporting data as to the meaning of that phrase. No ad hominems here. Real history. Real science. Eric Naegle (7:31), “IDIOT”, with full literate definition. Hareynolds (6:49), [airports create] “a thermal ‘mountain’ in the heat of the day”, from his professional experience. Anthony’s “Doh!!” says it all.

    Anthony, keep holding the liar’s feet to the fire.

    REPLY:
    I don’t like calling anyone at GISS liars or frauds, let’s not use those words. Here is what I think is going on. A methodology was developed, called GISTEMP. The methodology has weaknesses, and due to the way base assumptions were made, creates the output on those base assumptions from the Team. Because of choices made, such as airports, and baselines, and many others we aren’t privy to, we see the result we have today, including the ongoing adjustments which seem to be part of the data analysis base assumptions since they seem to happen with regularity.

    When GISTEMP was coded, considering siting and airports was not in the thought process I don’t think. Neither Hansen nor Schmidt are instrumentation specialists or apparently versed in metrology (note that’s not meteorology). They are theorists. It boils down to a twist on the old Star Trek line: “Dammit Jim I’m a theoretician not a thermometer jockey.”

    But the metrology associated with the surface data measurement is the foundation of the data. With the errors and biases we’ve seen, the data is questionable. GISS has not once addressed the issue, they assume the data is free of such issues, as they did with base assumptions when GISTEMP was created.

    What I think we have with GISS is a large case of confirmation bias, and the inability to change the base assumptions since so much is invested in it. That’s not a lie, and not fraud until proven. It is however likely bad science to not address the issues and to deal with the change of knowledge. – Anthony

  28. If the surface data is wrongly measured, then if data is additionally adjusted, then satellites’ temps readings are also adjusted with respect to ground stations..and so on. Who will in the future know, if only approximately, nowadays temperatures?. Our time will be called the “confused data era”.

  29. Steve S,

    It appears you and Tailhook are on to something. I’ve already seen a number of posters on different blogs suggest as much. The problem with all of this is, when does surface “data” become not data, but a means to advance a certain narrative? No real scientist in any field would seriously accept data that has been massaged to fit a certain point of view. I mean if the surface data collected from airports and NOAA COOP stations is highly suspect, why use it at all? If Hansen is going to focus his alchemy on the effects of El Nino, why doesn’t he do the same for La Ninas? (rhetorical question).

    No one has a clue what NASA is doing with its data from one month to the next. A few years ago 1998 was the warmest. Now we find that June 2007 was. During La Nina months, the Pacific data is ignored. But, during the beginnings of a El Nino it is heavily weighted. I wonder how many versions of the GISS data sets are out there? Is there one for very month? It sounds quite a bit like Baskin Robbins -a little something for everyone.

  30. Jeff Wiita (06:17:31) :

    “Could we start a campaign to educate Bill O’reilly on Fox News. He believes GISS and Jim Hansen. Glenn Beck has tried to explain what is going on, but Bill is six cookies short of a dozen. He repeated the GISS nonsense again, yesterday, July 14. His email is oreilly@foxnews.com.”

    Let him run for right now. His theme this week is to expose the insanity of cap and trade. Not a bad message from someone claiming to believe in global warming. We can start the education process later.

  31. “Tarmac” is not a generic term for solid surfaces at an airport (ok may it is now but it shouldn’t be). The airport runways are made of concrete.

    There I feel better now perhaps my medication is kicking in.

  32. Re Bill Illis: I like how the small warm part of Western Greenland (250km map) gets spreaded over the huge part of Arctic (1200km map), where are no stations. What the f__k?

  33. Flanagan:
    “This month’s whopping anomaly of 0.63C is once again much higher than that of RSS, UAH,…

    Once again?

    Yeah, once again. Why don’t you look at the data you reference?

  34. Steve S (07:03:02) :

    Well here’s a helpful explanation from a RealClimate poster
    I think it’s James Hansen or Al Gore as some guy named Wayne?

    He predicts “Global temperatures may be highest in history soon.”

    Only in written history wich is much worth as the paper it is written on.

  35. GISS global temperature plots are not credible to me (within, say, 1C) due to all the unproven adjustments and assumptions — not to mention the paucity of quality data from many parts of the world that must be adjusted and filled in using unproven methods.

    I cannot wait to see the “Watts Team” final detailed report on historical USA temperature anomalies. Hopefully, it will be based on using quality raw data from well understood documented sites — rather than on “manipulating” data.

  36. I wrote Bill O’reilly.

    What he says is this: Global warming is undoubtedly happening. Its the “cause” that is in question. And, regardless, Cap & Trade will not fix anything.

    Seems similar to my viewpoint.

  37. Actually, you should read the BBC link… where you’ll find such laughable statements as:

    All in all, Plimer’s book is dismissed by Monbiot as ‘utter nonsense’ and ‘a hilarious series of schoolboy errors’. Strange. I wouldn’t have put Monbiot down as the giggling type.

    As if Monbiot is the last word, or indeed, as if Monbiot has any sort of valid opinion whatsoever, on anything. Come on, tell me that isn’t hilarious!

    Also, I love their misspellings (“prooves”).

    However, the real gold there is the comments section.

    One nice thing about the Internet is it keeps raving lunatics raving in front of their monitors, not raving on the streets where they might actually cause some disturbance. Reading some of the regular commenters at BBC and other bastions of warmists, I am often reminded of a guy that I used to see walking near my office. He would carry on both sides of a conversation, LOUDLY, and sometimes get quite worked up over things. But no matter how intense the argument, it never really made any difference outside of his own head.

  38. Besides the obvious warming effect of lots of concrete and asphalt, is there maybe another factor that pollutes temperature measurements made at airports? Isn’t there an abundance of CO2 being spewed close to the ground by all those giant jet engines while idling in line awaiting permission to take off as well as during all those high-thrust takeoffs being made down the runway in rapid succession?

    I can recall the early jets when combustion was much less complete than it is with modern engines, and a long black tail was visible behind those early engines, particularly during takeoff. But even if you can’t see it, there is bound to be plenty of CO2 concentrated near those airport temperature sensors, and isn’t CO2 supposed to be a “greenhouse” heat absorber? If lots of US temperature measurements are made at airports, are there any grants available to study how greenhouse gas may affect temperature measurements being made at them?

  39. Don’t matter what GISS says, all agricultural and avian signs in NE Oregon indicate cold late start to summer. That matters a great deal to ranchers and farmers here. NOAA used to serve agricultural interests. Not any more. Many farms and ranches have their own weather stations now and are studying weather pattern variation drivers so that they can make informed decisions. NOAA, GISS, and associated climate change scientists have become media driven useless entities in terms of food production. And city dwellers just need to know whether or not to take an umbrella to work. We could be saving some tax dollars here by cutting these useless agencies out of our federal budget. Had the farmers and ranchers in NE Oregon followed this “warming” drivel, they would be in worse shape than they are right now.

  40. As the rate of decrease in ‘real’ global temperature starts with the NH winter, Hansen’s nubers will be shown as the fraud they really are. I almost feel sorry for the guy, as the very same politicians who currently support his efforts will turn on him like a pack of wolves once the game is up. The word ‘scapegoat’ springs to mind.

  41. Are these stations measuring a simple max-min temperature? (with no averaging of that max temp)?

    If so, one blast of hot air from a Rolls Royce Trent would be enough to give a few degrees ramp in maximum temperature. This would not happen every day, as it would depend on wind direction/speed and station location. But you can bet that when the conditions were right, the station would receive great dollops of hot exhaust gas. I know, because I work at airports every day, and you can easily feel the temperature rise on your skin.

  42. The GISS has the following table of surface station locations:

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/station_data/v2.temperature.inv.txt

    Colum 68 has a header of “P” which stands for “Population” and is described as follows:
    P =R if rural (not associated with a town of >10,000 population)
    S if associated with a small town (10,000-50,000 population)
    U if associated with an urban area (>50,000 population

    Colum 82 has a header of “A” which stands for “Airport” and is described as follows:
    A =A if the station is at an airport; else x

    The table is easily loaded into Excel as fixed fields and contains much useful information. Sub-totals can be generated which yields the following table:

    Rural Airport, 975
    Small-town Airport, 504
    Urban Airport, 911
    Subtotal Airports, 2390
    Rural Non-airport, 3021
    Small-town Non-airport, 905
    Urban Non-airport, 1048
    Subtotal Non-airports, 4974
    Total Surface Stations, 7364

    The GISS surface station table has 7,364 entries of which 2,390 are airports, so one-third of the GISS stations are at airports. Of the 2,390 surface stations described as airports, 975 are in rural locations. There are a total of 3,996 rural surface stations of which 975 are at airports so one-fourth of all rural stations are really not rural.

    If anyone wants a different analysis of the data just post a request.

    Mike

    Reply: The list you are referencing is the complete list GISS starts with. The GISStemp software culls some of the stations from the overall herd. The list of stations actually used can be found here.

    Also note that the majority of stations actually used did not report a June 2009 temperature. – John

  43. Has anyone else noticed the AMSU-A satellite readings lately? The readings at 14,000 feet show temperature has suddenly headed north. As I understand it, the 14,000 foot level is what Roy Spencer uses to compile his monthly global average temperature plot. As of July 13, the satellite was reading 0.73 F above last year’s reading on that date and 0.81 F above the 20-year average.

    That’s a pretty radical departure from last month’s average.

  44. >>>Every afternoon at about 3:15 a KLM “heavy” (a 747 combi)
    >>>loaded with frreight would pass directly over our headquarters
    >>>building and I swear that you could count the rivets on the
    >>>landing gear doors.

    You mean like this…

    Its those crazed Cloggies, they are not used to enormous great hills near to runways (ie, anything more than 2 meters high).

    And if you want to see how far all that hot gas can go…

    .

  45. Well, Steve, eyeballing is not enough. Here is a graph showing the difference between UAH and GISS

    The average is obviously very close to zero…

  46. Sorry to be pedantic, but I think it useful when talking about UHI effects to be more accurate and use the term Delta UHI over time (using Delta in the calculus sense meaning change). UHI doesn’t matter if it hasn’t changed over time. eg, if the surrounding population hasn’t changed.

    The team can argue that UHI ‘doesn’t matter’ if they can point to locations where it hasn’t changed over time.

    Obviously, for a host of reasons, airports are very likely to have changed over time, and thus demonstrated Delta UHI which contaminates the temperature record. Delta UHI can and should be measured by comparison with truly rural sites some 10km or so away, far enough not to be affected by the UHI effect.

    As I understand it, ‘Rural’ is defined as towns where less than 10,000 people live. Anyone with a thermometer reading outside temperature can prove to themselves that small towns most certainly do have a UHI effect, and it can be quite pronounced. The real question though is how the UHI has changed over time, since the Delta UHI could be the main contributer to the reported temperature increases.

  47. Thankfully, the algorithms are robust enough to calculate adjustments to the 100th of a degree even when data is missing.….Too robust perhaps?

  48. I should have said. ‘Anyone with a thermometer reading outside temperature IN THEIR CAR can prove to themselves that small towns most certainly do have a UHI effect, and it can be quite pronounced.”

  49. >>>Every afternoon at about 3:15 a KLM “heavy” (a 747 combi)
    >>>loaded with frreight would pass directly over our headquarters
    >>>building and I swear that you could count the rivets on the
    >>>landing gear doors.

    You mean like this?

    Its those crazed Cloggies, they are not used to great hills in front of the runway (anything more than 2 meters high).

    And if you want to know how far all that hot gas will go, then take a look at this…

    .

  50. Nogw (08:26:00) :

    Our time will be called the “confused data era”.

    …or perhaps the “error era”? (Sounding like a Kennedy)

  51. >>>“Tarmac” is not a generic term for solid surfaces at an
    >>>airport (ok may it is now but it shouldn’t be). The airport
    >>>runways are made of concrete.

    Not in the UK or much of Europe – runways here are all tarmac, its much smoother. We don’t like bone-shaker takeoffs.

    Except for Luton, some years ago, where a crazed civil engineer decided to use bricks at the threshold (like a house driveway). But those all disappeared after the first heavy take off, and they are back to tarmac now.

  52. I know that UHI exists and even our little car thermometer proves it.

    Our car thermometer yesterday reported 111 degrees at a McDonalds in an area where heat was radiating off of bricks, cars right next to us, and the pavement, and our home thermometer corrected for bias was 103-104.

    That’s a 7-8 degrees heat bias right there, maybe I should notify NASA that the McDonalds drive through near the building surrounded by cars and pavement would be a good place to put a climate station :-P

  53. Newark Airport and NYC used to have the same daytime temperatures. However, in the past 20 years or so, Newark has become much warmer than Central Park in spring and summer, typically 3 – 4 degrees on sunny days.

    Here’s my explanation, and maybe some research can bear me out:

    The weather station was located just to the west of Parking Lot C, that big lot which abuts Route 1 – 9. Up until recently, that parking lot was full night and day, and you really had to circle around to find a space. The parking lot, in fact, was expanded, and the weather station is just to the west of the expanded lot. My hypothesis is that when the lot expanded, that’s when the discrepancy started to occur.

    Now, this year, an amazing thing happened. The Port of NY – NJ Authority, which runs the parking lots, raised the rates to $24 a day. Coupled with the soft economy, this has let to Parking Lot C being almost empty. In fact, the monorail no longer serves the most distant of the two stops.

    Let’s see if the temperature discrepancy between NY and Newark Airport (EWR) has narrowed. If so, it would indicate that the Newark temperatures have been spiked by automobile traffic nearby. Of course, the lot is still paved, and the concrete has a lot to do with it, too.

  54. Jeff Wiita (06:17:31) : You are spot on regarding O’Reilly’s ignorance on environmental matters. His rants about Big Oil are equivalent to those concerning AGW. He seems to believe that we can achieve independence from foreign Oil producers with windmills and solar sources.:

    I sent an e-mail to Bill O’Reilly informing him that he is out to lunch on global warming. I suggested he have a “come to Jesus meeting” with Steve Milloy, who is a regular contributor to Fox News. Sadly, O’Reilly’s ego is too much for him to overcome.

  55. Anthony: If GISS knows that the underlying assumptions and structure of GISTEMP are flawed and producing erroneous data and continues to put forth that data with the intent to mislead the public, that is fraud. The proof is there to observe. I understand your concerns, but submit that your silence is better than making excuses for GISS.

  56. “Reply: ……Also note that the majority of stations actually used did not report a June 2009 temperature. – John”

    Isn’t that the problem? If there is a valid algorithm that can predict temperatures within an X mile radius, then I am sure that we would understand weather a lot better than we do. As it is, there can be a huge variance between a distance of ten miles. I can think of one such example from here in Ohio back in June where it was at least 5ºF warmer downtown than it was at my house. Cloud cover and precipitation were the main reasons for this, but how does an algorithm adjust for that, and why would you want it to?

  57. bob paglee (09:12:28) : “Isn’t there an abundance of CO2 being spewed close to the ground . . .”

    As Tina Turner might sing “What’s CO2 got to do with it?”

    Ans: Extremely little when thinking of the extra over the background concentration.

  58. I propose GISS software engineers spend a couple of million dollars to write a computer program that will provide an answer to the following probability problem:

    What is the probability that to further the AGW agenda an individual who advocates and participates in civil disobedience as a means of disrupting coal mining operations will if given the opportunity knowingly distort temperature data to further that agenda?

    On second thought, we can save a couple of million dollars. The answer is 0.99999999999 give or take a couple of 9s.

  59. A Tarmac could be a good example of Kirchhoff’s law of thermal radiation, or black body experiment. I would suspect that the increased thermal emission from the dark construction materials are from the increased UV radiation reaching Earth’s surface.

  60. HadSST2 June is out at 0.5C, warmest June also since 1998. So such a warm temperature in GISTEMP can only be expected. No doubt HadCrut3 will also show a warm June too, it’s quite evident from the sea surface temperatures over the past month that it was very warm.

    Why have the satellite records shown cooling? Because the lower troposphere is evidentally not in sync with the surface. In fact it’s pretty obvious from even a cursory inspection of the records that the lower troposphere temperature lags behind the surface temperature by several months.

    In other words the surface records are showing what is happening at the surface now, while the satellite records are still showing what happened at the surface months back when we were in La Nina conditions.

    So why oh why is a comparison between the satellite and surface records for a single month being made as if they should be in sync? They aren’t even measuring the same thing.

    I also have a nice prediction that the satellite records will show strong warming in coming months due to the El Nino conditions filtering up into the satellite records.

  61. Has anyone recently done a temperature profile using just our 200 or so rural stations? David Archibald has one that ends in 2003, and only uses Hawkinsville, Glennville, Calhoun Research Station, Highlands, and
    Talbotton stations for his US temperature profile. Is there one (or plans for one)that uses more stations, and one that is more up to date? Would love to see it.

  62. it might be a good idea to set up some (scientific, thus controllable by all involved) temperature/weather stations in the vicinity of the “official” weather stations where some doubt might arise … 1to 2 km from the official location, same altitude, same conditons … just the see whether the numbers are more or less correct (and then I don’t mention the method to come to a “world temperature …) …

    I would be happy to contribute …

  63. “Thankfully, the algorithms are robust enough to calculate adjustments to the 100th of a degree even when data is missing.”

    Nicely put.

  64. I think we can all agree that airports are undergoing manmade warming ;)

    Ergo, Consensus-John, any plans to meet with Edward Markey to learn how to make legislation to mitigate airport warming? :D

  65. jorgekafkazar (12:44:40) : Flanagan is being monstrously disingenuous. Look at the pictures again-the difference in question is that of the DETRENDED data! Of course there is no trend in the diffferences of two series from which the trends have been removed! DUH!

  66. Bobn (12:29:32) : “I also have a nice prediction that the satellite records will show strong warming in coming months due to the El Nino conditions filtering up into the satellite records.”

    Excellent, surface temps travel upwards. How does CO2 in the atmosphere (traveling upwards) heat the surface?

  67. Congratulations, Anthony. WUWT has agin been cited on the GISS anamoly in NRO’s The Corner.

  68. John F. Hultquist (11:40:53) : “‘bob paglee (09:12:28) : “Isn’t there an abundance of CO2 being spewed close to the ground . . .’

    “As Tina Turner might sing “What’s CO2 got to do with it?”

    “Ans: Extremely little when thinking of the extra over the background concentration.”

    The background concentration is essentially zero. CO2 concentration in the exhaust would be roughly 2 to 4 percent by volume. So within the confines of the airport, the average CO2 concentration would be measurably higher than background. But if anything is significant to the local microclimate, it would be the water vapor created.

    http://www.docstoc.com/docs/7181814/Gravimetric-Analysis-of-Exhaust-Gas-From-Gas-Turbine-Combustion

  69. timetochoose: this is not MY graph, but one from a skeptic site. Moreover, people here and there have been comparing trends between GISS and the rest. They’re almost the same…

  70. alex verlinden (12:40:35) :

    it might be a good idea to set up some (scientific, thus controllable by all involved) temperature/weather stations in the vicinity of the “official” weather stations where some doubt might arise … 1to 2 km from the official location, same altitude, same conditons … just the see whether the numbers are more or less correct (and then I don’t mention the method to come to a “world temperature …) …

    I had the same idea. Get 20 or more Temperature Data Loggers that AW advertises here, and site one in the NOAA Stephenson Screen with the NOAA thermometer, and put one close, at 1-2 km away, in a non-UHI site.

    The NOAA would have to be involved, and ideally we would need to look at 20-40 sites, at a minimum.

    ID each Logger, and Double blind the data. Run it out a year, and send double blind data to both interested and neutral parties. We would get direct comparison to the accuracy of the NOAA thermometers, plus the actual UHI effect (if any).

    I also would contribute. Hell, I would buy the first 10 loggers.

  71. jorgekafkazar (13:51:01) : “So within the confines of the airport, the average CO2 concentration …”

    An interesting point. Do the weather stations or any place else on airport grounds monitor CO2?

  72. Steve S (07:03:02) : 153.
    wayne davidson says:” So I await some convincing conviction statement on this temperature pause. Seems that current El-Nino is poised to surpass 1998 one, if this trend holds, Global temperatures may be highest in history soon.”

    So this implies to me that Davidson must think strong El Ninos are the result of AGW because If they weren’t then we are just talking about natural variations. Is this the position of AGWers, that CO2 will cause strong El Ninos resulting in higher global temps?

  73. Flanagan (13:52:52) : It isn’t YOUR graph but evidently you didn’t READ the graph. And not only are the trends in UAH and GISS NOT the same, the difference between them is in fact the OPPOSITE of what it should be. Namely sruface warming more than the atmosphere, rather than the other way around.

    It doesn’t matter where a graph is from, IF IT DOESN’T SHOW WHAT YOU SAY IT SHOWS that is disingenuous.

    Recommended reading on surface versus satellites:

    http://www.climatesci.org/publications/pdf/R-345.pdf

  74. jorgekafkazar commented on a comment to my comment:

    jorgekafkazar (13:51:01) :

    John F. Hultquist (11:40:53) : “‘bob paglee (09:12:28) : “Isn’t there an abundance of CO2 being spewed close to the ground . . .’

    “As Tina Turner might sing “What’s CO2 got to do with it?”

    “Ans: Extremely little when thinking of the extra over the background concentration.”

    The background concentration is essentially zero. CO2 concentration in the exhaust would be roughly 2 to 4 percent by volume. So within the confines of the airport, the average CO2 concentration would be measurably higher than background. But if anything is significant to the local microclimate, it would be the water vapor created.

    http://www.docstoc.com/docs/7181814/Gravimetric-Analysis-of-Exhaust-Gas-From-Gas-Turbine-Combustion

    Thanks Jorge — I just thought that besides all the other things going on around airports, maybe the extra CO2 would be something to consider, but you are right — exhaust from jet aircraft must also create a lot of H20 as a product of combustion. The question is would any of these products cause an increase or decrease in the nearby ambient temperature? And if there is an effect, would prevailing low altitude wind blow it toward the temp sensor or away from it? Doesn’t that same question apply to the location of the sensor with respect to prevailing winds blowing across the huge concrete or asphalt parking lots toward or away from the sensor?

  75. South Pole Weather Station today.. And this is warm?!?

    Conditions at Jul 15, 2009 – 01:50 PM EDTJul 15, 2009 – 12:50 PM CDTJul 15, 2009 – 11:50 AM MDTJul 15, 2009 – 10:50 AM PDTJul 15, 2009 – 09:50 AM ADTJul 15, 2009 – 08:50 AM HDT
    2009.07.15 1750 UTC
    Wind from the ENE (070 degrees) at 8 MPH (7 KT)
    Visibility less than 1 mile
    Sky conditions partly cloudy
    Weather Light snow grains
    Mist
    Temperature -70 F (-57 C)
    Windchill -99 F (-73 C)
    Pressure (altimeter) 28.63 in. Hg (969 hPa)

  76. I expect you chaps already know about this site, but in case you don’t:

    http://clearclimatecode.org/

    Quote: “The results of some climate-related software are used as the basis for important public policy decisions. If the software is not clearly correct, decision-making will be obscured by debates about it. The project goals are to clear away that obscurity, to increase the clarity and correctness of climate science software.

    The Clear Climate Code project is conducted by Ravenbrook Limited and its staff, in the public interest. Nick Barnes had the project idea in 2007. Nobody has commissioned this work from us, or paid us for it. All the code and documentation written as part of the project is available at no charge under an open source license.”

    See an interesting PDF here:

    http://clearclimatecode.org/doc/2008-09-11/pyconuk/ccc-20080914.pdf

    Shame the site has not been updated since last September.

  77. Inspired by John Goetz I have done a small impromptu analysis of the 19 Swedish stations in GISS v.2. Out of these 19 there are seven (Luleå, Östersund/Frösön, Karlstad, Uppsala, Göteborg/Säve, Torslanda and Jönköping) are classed as airport. Torslanda was actually closed many years ago and the tarmac torn up (it is now an industrial estate on the outskirts of Gothenburg). On the other hand there are two stations not classed as airports, that are: Halmstad and Visby Airport (one would have thought that whoever coded these things might have become suspicious that a station called VISBY AIRPORT might perhaps be an airport, but apparently not). So there are actually 8 airports out of 19 stations (42%).
    Of the 11 remaining stations 4 are classed as Urban, 2 as Small Towns and 5 as Rural. The first two categories are more or less OK, but there is something really interesting among the rural stations. There is a station 64502456001 KREUZBURG. Now, there is no such place in Sweden, the name is German, not Swedish and the coordinates (60.00 18.20) is in the middle of a forest with no houses nearby. Also the altitude is supposed to be 621 meters which is just about 600 meters too high for the location. Now there is a station #2456 in Sweden (Films kyrkby) but it is at 60.23 17.90 and 39 meters altitude, so apparently there has been a monumental goof-up somewhere. I wonder if GISS has a correction for altitude as well, in which case “KREUZBURG” should be a pretty reliable hotspot.
    Well, except for that there isn’t really much wrong with the station list, except that Jönköping which is situated on one of the largest lakes in Europe is classified as having no lake nearby, that some of the vegetation data are rather doubtful and the brightness classification is downright weird (Härnösand with 18,000 inhabitants is “Dark” while Karesuando with 300 is “Dim”).

  78. Only 134 stations for the entire U.S.? On my 50 mile drive to work using the thermometer in my vehicle i’ve seen differences as much as 10 degrees F and i’m going east to west not north and south so how are they supposed to call a sampling of only 134 stations anywhere near accurate?

    I guess the G stands for Guessing.

  79. We both know that this is not a UHI issue. Ocean temperatures (and heights) are running at near record highs. These are measured by satellite and are independent data.

    The MSU data is the outlier here.

    PS trust you are not censoring again at WUWT?

    REPLY: Trust you are not hiding your BoM affiliation again? – A

  80. An immediate correction. Three more Swedish sites are misclassifiied and are actually airfields

    2128 Stensele, is actually at Gunnarn, a military airfield
    2142 Jokkmokk, actually at the nearby military airfield
    2462 Stockholm is actually Stockholm/Bromma, the domestic airport.

    So that makes 11 airfields out of 19 stations (58 %)

  81. “”” CodeTech (09:09:41) :

    Actually, you should read the BBC link… where you’ll find such laughable statements as:

    All in all, Plimer’s book is dismissed by Monbiot as ‘utter nonsense’ and ‘a hilarious series of schoolboy errors’. Strange. I wouldn’t have put Monbiot down as the giggling type.

    As if Monbiot is the last word, or indeed, as if Monbiot has any sort of valid opinion whatsoever, on anything. Come on, tell me that isn’t hilarious!

    Also, I love their misspellings (”prooves”). “”””

    Better watch your language there Codetech; and be careful whose spelling you are ridiculing.

    Standard rule of English Grammer regarding some words ending in (f) for plurals and tense changes; words such as “proof” “roof” “wharf” etc.

    Rule is change the (f) to a (v) and add es os s as the case maybe.

    Therefore “roof” pluralises to “Rooves”, “wharf” to “wharves” “proof” to “prooves” and so on.

    Only in American do you leave the (f) and simply add an (s). All these changes were made deliberately by Noah Webster along with changing all the ise words to ize words. In English, “ise” is preferred, but “ize” is optional. In American “ize” is mandatory. Gives me the heeby jeebies trying to keep it all straight.

    Americans say I’ll be with you “momentarily”, when they mean I’ll be with you “IN” a moment. In English, if someone says I will be with you “momentarily” they mean I will be with you “FOR” a moment.

    As they say of us; we are two peoples divided by a common language.

    Then there’s that old Joke; “Why do the English say “shedule”, instead of “skedule”, for the word “schedule”.

    And the obvious answer is; “Because they have a much better shool system !”

    George

  82. Flanagan

    Here is the difference between GISS and RSS since 2002:

    I dare say there is a trend (!)

    And yes, of GISS, HADCRUT, UAH and RSS, it is ONLY GISS that has 1998 relatively cold.
    The relative smaller temperature rise GISS 1998 yields both a more warm-friendly trend and it gives you the long run compare UAH vs. GISS more similar.

    But as i showed GISS after 1998 has a MUCH warmer trend than RSS.

    In 7 years GISS trend has warmed 0,15 K more than RSS ..

  83. “”” Ray (12:06:07) :

    A Tarmac could be a good example of Kirchhoff’s law of thermal radiation, or black body experiment. I would suspect that the increased thermal emission from the dark construction materials are from the increased UV radiation reaching Earth’s surface. “””

    Not sure exactly which “Kirchoff’s Law” you are referring to; but the only one I am familiar with; which relates to radiation in any way, says that absorption and emission spectra are identical; but that law only applies strictly to bodies that are in complete thermal equilibrium with their environment; and at a fixed temperature.

    And if Kirchoff’s law does apply then the absorption and emission are identical at each and every separate wavelength; so there is no way that absorbed UV absorption could influence IR emission.

    Then there’s the little matter that there is extremely little UV that ever reaches the Earth’s surface; virtually zero shorter than 300 nm wavelength.

    So no cigar I am afraid.

  84. I think we all know that July is heating up quickly, but in what way, seeing the continued stream of record low highs in the US according to NOAA is suggesting it’s not neccesarily because of high temps. in the US.

    And for those reading the scare stories by the media, look, I can make alarmist statements too and top them, like

    [alarmist]-emit all you want, by 2011 it will be so hot there will be no more life on Earth, enjoy your last two years, the beginning of thermal armeggedon will begin in less than a month and it’s too late to stop it[/alarmist]

  85. .63. Hmmm. That’s gotta be near the record for the month, right?

    I’m betting the shoe pounding is also at a record high over at RC…..

  86. “”” David (11:32:54) :

    “Reply: ……Also note that the majority of stations actually used did not report a June 2009 temperature. – John”

    Isn’t that the problem? If there is a valid algorithm that can predict temperatures within an X mile radius, then I am sure that we would understand weather a lot better than we do. As it is, there can be a huge variance between a distance of ten miles. I can think of one such example from here in Ohio back in June where it was at least 5ºF warmer downtown than it was at my house. Cloud cover and precipitation were the main reasons for this, but how does an algorithm adjust for that, and why would you want it to? “””

    You are talking about a simple failure to observe the standard laws of sampled data systems; notably the Nyquist sampling Theorem:

    Any band limited continuous function can be reconstructed accurately from samples of that function; if and only if the continuous function is sampled at a rate at least twice the frquency of the band limit.

    If the continuous function is sampled at a rate of 2B, but contains an out of band signal component at a frequency B+b, the reconstructed signal will contain an aliassing noise signal at a spurious frequency of B-b; and since that signal is now inside the band limit; no filtering can remove it; it is a permanent corruption of the recovered function.
    And in the case where the function contains a signal component at a frequency of 2B or higher, then the aliassed signal is at B-B or zero frequency (or less), and that zero frequency component is simply the average value of the function; which now becomes completely unrecoverable.

    The GISS temp data; being based on a min-max thermometer reading gives no more than two samples in a 24 hour period, which is the bare minimum for a 24 hour period signal component (the diurnal temperature cycle) but it is only sufficient, if that temperature cycle data is time symmetric; like a pure sinusoid. Since the daily average of min-max is reported; then the factor of two undersampling is already present, so the average cannot be recovered; and any harmonic variation which would make the signal time assymmetric, or any higher frequency cycling such as that due to clouds moving by, makes even the temporal data corrupt. But when you look at the spatial sampling component (the 1200 km BS or even the 250 km), it is clear that the function is undersampled by orders of magnitude; so it is inherently impossible to accurately compute the average of the recovered but aliass corrupted signal.

    Sorry GISStemp; your output is simply the result of applying your algorithm to your data. It in no way relates to anything to do with Planet Earth; since yourt signal sampling regimen is insufficeint to properly recover the original continuous function; you are simply publishing GISStemp; which is not any mean global temperature or anything else of physical importance to climate.

  87. Broome Airport Western Australia. For all intents and purposes the Airport is practically in the middle of the town (a great planning coup). That could be a case of a double whammy. UHI plus AHI.

  88. Dan (11:11:40) :
    New York cental park and Newark Int. Airport compared. (together with giss adjustment)

  89. Les Johnson (14:18:53) & alex verlinden (12:40:35):

    ID each Logger, and Double blind the data. Run it out a year, and send double blind data to both interested and neutral parties. We would get direct comparison to the accuracy of the NOAA thermometers, plus the actual UHI effect (if any).

    I also would contribute. Hell, I would buy the first 10 loggers.

    I’ll volunteer to buy some. Anyone who buys one, I’ll match it, up to 5. That would make a total of twenty, a good start.

    The dataloggers would need to be calibrated at a certified lab, with standards traceable to N.I.S.T., or the inevitable critics will question the accuracy. That would add a little to the cost. But it’s basically a good idea. Real time info, archived online, would make for a few sweaty brows at GISS.

  90. I used to live about 1 and a half miles outside of JFK, right under the flight path. In winter, any snow or ice that accumulated would disappear with a day or two. My parents house was about 10 miles from JKF and they would have ice for weeks. I enjoyed the UHI effect the airport gave me. Meant very little shovelling and I almost never needed to use salt on my walkways.

    That being said, I thought the AGW hypothesis’ signature would appear in the tropsphere. If that’s the case, why are we concerned with land temps other than how they relate to the troposphere? What am I missing?

  91. “The GISS temp data; being based on a min-max thermometer reading gives no more than two samples in a 24 hour period, which is the bare minimum for a 24 hour period signal component (the diurnal temperature cycle) but it is only sufficient, if that temperature cycle data is time symmetric;”

    Has anyone done 24 Hrs logging temps every 5 mins so as to compare an integrated daily temp against a min/max average?
    Seems to me a balmy night, blistering day and a CuNim hailstorm round the sensor for 30 mins then heating into a balmy evening again, gives a very short cold spike which is not representative.

  92. Smokey: A good start.

    Now, we just need to find someone to ram rod this. Someone with meteorlogical experience; and preferably one who is familar with Surface Meterological Stations…..

  93. 30 or so years ago, I took off from Chicago OHare airport in a snow storm. Takeoffs were delayed as they cleared snow off the runway. It was snowing hard. My plane sat waiting to takeoff for at least an hour.

    I watched truck after truck go to a big hole in the concrete and dump its load of snow into the hole. Then I saw blue flames coming out of the hole. They were dumping snow onto a gigantic gas burner.

    It must have been putting out prodigous amounts of heat to melt the volume of snow being dumped in. I hope they weren’t measuring temperatures anywhere near it.

  94. An insightful post, as usual, by John Goetz.

    Airport records are subject to a double whammy of distortion: a) urban encroachment and b) growing infrastructure and traffic that generates heat locally. Cities tend to grow out toward the airport, rather than away fom it. What may have been cool pastures just a few decades ago turns into a town surrounding the airport. What has troubled me for some time is the steady progression towards airport sites in the GISS global compilations and the increasing failure to update truly rural stations. While everbody is pointing fingers at the SST component this June, the land-only anomaly is even higher. I would suggest a study that determines the greatly diminishing proportion of truly rural records actually employed by GISS during the last few decades.

  95. History of Broome Airport

    http://www.broomeair.com.au/corporate/history/

    For a reasonably uncorrupted site I would recommend Meekatharra.The station is ~800mtres from the Airport infrastructure and 400mt from the end of the strip.

    Although the station moved to the airport in the 1950’s , at that stage there was no tarmac even on the major highway through town.

    http://maps.google.com.au/maps?hl=en&q=meekatharra%20airport&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&tab=wl

    http://www.bom.gov.au/weather/wa/wa-observations-map.shtml

  96. “George E. Smith (17:13:17) ”

    A couple of additional points.

    To precisely reconstruct the analog (continuous-time) temperature record at a point in space, the sampled temperature values must be perfect — i.e., they cannot be quantized to a fixed set of values — like the nearest tenth of a degree centigrade.

    Since it is extremely unlikely that the time intervals between “minimum/maximum and maximum/minimum temperature states” are the same, the sampling times are not uniform — which means that even if the highest frequency component in the analog temperature record at a fixed location were less than one cycle per day (which itself is next to impossible), the analog temperature record can be precisely reconstructed only if the times of the temperature samples are perfectly known.

    In addition to being a function of time, real-world temperature records are also functions of position (latitude/longitude/altitude). To reconstruct over a volume of space a precise instantaneous spatial analog temperature record from a set of spatially diverse temperature samples taken at a single instant in time, (a) the sampling locations must be precisely known, (b) the analog temperature variations must be “bandlimited” in a three-dimensional spatial sense, and (c) the “sampling spatial locations” must obey a spatial three-dimensional sampling rule similar to the Nyquist sampling rate for real time-sampled-data.

    If the objective is to precisely reconstruct a four-dimensional (three spatial dimensions and one time dimension) analog temperature record (i.e., a temperature record that is continuous in both space and time) from a sampled temperature record (sampled with respect to both space and time), the “sampling rules” will be both complex and a function of the four-dimensional “frequency” content of the actual analog temperatures.

    Bottom line, I agree with you. Anyone who claims the existing temperature records provide anything but a coarse and ill-defined estimate of “average” temperature is simply wrong.

  97. Warning: non-scientist alert!

    Several lifetimes ago, I spent some time in the air force, mainly in hot and uncomfortable places (and in the tropics too). At that time, the air force always mounted the airfield weather station at the top of a wooden tower, about twenty feet above ground level – presumably to remove bias caused by ground temperature.

    All of the pictures I have seen recently that show civilian weather stations show them close to the ground.

    Imah sittin here wonderin whay th’ar be a diff’rnce?

  98. Oh please, how dare you think that there is a heat Urban Island effect!?!?!? Remember that is why we have algorithms to account for such silly non-sense. I mean seriously a twelve degree difference is nothing hard to account for lets see that really just means we have to raise the surrounding area by 12 degrees! See Problem solved. Sheesh, come on people this is science, don’t question our methods there is a consensus after all.

  99. >>>Broome Airport Western Australia. For all intents and
    >>>purposes the Airport is practically in the middle of the town
    >>>(a great planning coup). That could be a case of a double
    >>>whammy. UHI plus AHI.

    And there is also a b***** great sea breeze there.

    Broom’s temperature can go up to the high thirties in the early morning, and then at 8 or 9am there will be a sudden, great rush of air and the temperature will go down by 10 or more degrees (centigrade). (this change can happen in less than a minute)

    How can you determine the temperature of such a variable place? Surely, you should take a reading further inland, away from the sea breeze.

  100. Flanagan, (07:11:54)
    Frank Lansner, (16:33:47)
    “Here is the difference between GISS and RSS since 2002:

    I dare say there is a trend (!)”

    I made some graphs (not shown here, i regret) and i did the following findings:
    1. From 1979 to June 2009, the average difference between (RSS+UAH)/2 and GISS anomalies is 0.248 C (GISS 0.248 C more than the average between RSS and UAH). This difference can be explained (different base).
    2. From 1979 to June 2009: The trend of the difference between (RSS+UAH)/2 and GISS is y = 0.0002x. This means that in this period, GISS showed 0.07 C more warming than the average between UAH and RSS.
    3. Since 2002, this trend is rising. It amounts to y = 0.0016x. So GISS gives 0.144 C more warming during this 90 months.
    4. Since 2008, we are witnessing large fluctuations in the differences (0.145 C (February 2009) to 0.592 C (June 2009).

    In 2008, there was a similar discussion on this site as we have now. Taking into account the large differences since 2008, i think we have to wait the end of 2009 to draw conclusions. One point is clear to me: the more the difference between GISS and RSS/UAH is rising, the less the GISS figures become credible. How long will this trend go on like this?

  101. And there is also a b***** great sea breeze there.

    That’s true of much of coastal Australia.

    In Perth we call it the Freemantle Doctor.

    In Sydney, they call them Southerly Busters. Confusing cold fronts from the south with sea breezes in summer.

  102. ralph ellis (23:44:26) :

    >>>Broome Airport Western Australia. For all intents and
    >>>purposes the Airport is practically in the middle of the town
    >>>(a great planning coup). That could be a case of a double
    >>>whammy. UHI plus AHI.

    And there is also a b***** great sea breeze there.

    In Perth, at The WACA, they call the sea breeze ‘The Freemantle Doctor’. It has been very welcome to many an England team toiling in many a long day in the field in the Boxing Day test match.

  103. and -0,1 K is indicated by yellow.
    To get a bluish color you have to come below -2 K..

  104. Thank you for explaining the nature of the data. I was eyeballing it after looking at a lot of employment data and thought it might be picking-up construction work, but now that you point out it is airport data that makes sense why it didn’t pan out. I decided to eyeball some aggregate flight volume data and there is a peak in 2007 in both the heat anomaly and flight volume, then a decrease in both the following year. Unfortunately, the raw data looks expensive like $700 from OAG.

  105. An interesting study would be to look at record high max temps versus record low max temps, and record low min temps versus record high min temps as a function of airport placement. If Airport sites are over represented in the high records, that would be evidence of a temp sensor site bias. A case in point, the temp sensor at the Pendleton Airport is probably on record as the site of record highs while the sensors placed at the same elevation but away from the airport in this high plateau area will record the record low at that elevation. The NOAA sensor at Meacham, Oregon is in an area all its own. I swear that place really is an Arctic island that just got misplaced in the continental shuffle and neglected to adjust its climate accordingly.

    By the way Frank, I emailed the Unisys site and attempted to educate on standard metrics for warm vs cool colors. Red is warmer than gray when it comes to standard definitions for color warmth but on the new color scheme at Unisys SST, red is used to show just a bit of warming while gray is used to show a lot of warming. The “warmest” color on their new design is…wait for it…BLUE.

  106. Pamela-Meacham’s site is where the long gone FAA(really CAA) Flight Service
    station was.-there used to be an Airport there too.I knew an old FSS fellow back in the 1970’s who was one of the last to “man” that FSS.-He likened it to his days at Solydatna Ak.-execpt Solydatna-not sure of the spelling-was warmer.
    Meaham’s got a long string of records-at least into the 1930’s but finding it all
    would be a challenge.As I recall 1948 is the oldest in the NOAA data…

  107. Claude Harvey (10:07:57) :

    Has anyone else noticed the AMSU-A satellite readings lately?

    Steven Hill (12:41:21) :

    Looks like July is heating up.

    Agreed. Go to http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps and set the graph for ch05. There is a dramatic warming in the last two weeks. Is there an equipment issue, or is this the effect of the return of El Nino?

    Roy Spencer: If you’re reading this: What’s up with that?

  108. Rereke Whakaaro (22:46:24) :
    Warning: non-scientist alert!

    Several lifetimes ago, I spent some time in the air force, mainly in hot and uncomfortable places (and in the tropics too). At that time, the air force always mounted the airfield weather station at the top of a wooden tower, about twenty feet above ground level – presumably to remove bias caused by ground temperature.

    All of the pictures I have seen recently that show civilian weather stations show them close to the ground.

    ———–

    The observing stations were generally placed a bit higher that ground level to observe field conditions better. Every one I ever saw had thermometers and sling psychrometers in an instrument shelter that was properly placed close by and properly maintained. The observer was also usually equipped with a calibrated recording thermograph and often with special visibility sensors, both vertical and horizontal, some along the runways.

    But much more was reported than temperatures, and at minimum every hour. That observer had the authority to close the field done whenever he observed conditions below minimums. Temperature was not one of those conditions. These folks were concerned with safe aircraft operations — not climate.

    A B-29 crashed on take-off at Ladd Field, Alaska (I think in 1946) with the measured temperature at TO time (actually accident time) of -57F. He had his turbos compressing that dense air at full blower and blew the heads right off several cylinders at an inopportune moment.

  109. If you zoom in the station is just around the corner where the Airport road leaves the Murchison downs road.

    The BoMs metadata puts it 2 kilometers south of there. Unless the Google Earth’s GPS locations are wrong which doesn’t seem to be the case.

  110. >>>In Perth we call the sea breeze the Freemantle Doctor.

    Indeed you do.
    But if the met stations are all coastal, then one might be forgiven for thinking that the midday temperature in Western Oz never gets above 30oc – whereas it can climb to 47oc as you know (I had 47oc last time I was there).

    Thus these coastal monitoring stations are completely misleading and largely useless, in that they measure sea temperature and not land temperature. How many others are similarly poorly sited?

  111. FWIW, GIStemp also uses airports to represent pristine “rural” stations in the STEP that “corrects” for Urban Heat Island effect:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2009/08/23/gistemp-fixes-uhi-using-airports-as-rural/

    So not only are the bulk of the thermometers at airports, but 500+ of the “rural” stations used to “correct” for UHI are at airports.

    Among the “gems” I found on the list were the Marine Corp Air Station at Quantico, yes, THAT Quantico and the main commercial air port at Lihue Kauai, Hawaii with over 100,000 flights a year…

    So we correct for UHI at airports using airports via the Reference Station Method… Uh Huh…

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