Borenstein’s AP Sea Surface Temperature Article Is Misleading

Guest Post By Bob Tisdale

The Seth Borenstein AP article about the recent high sea surface temperature…
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jLv3LpI0fw21ULmgkJtinBFrwm7AD9A6OUF06
…is misleading. There is a significant difference between what Seth Borenstein reported and what NOAA stated in the July “State of the Climate”.
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/?reportglobal&year2009&month7

Borenstein does not clarify that it is a record for the month of July, where NOAA does. NOAA writes, “The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record, 0.59°C (1.06°F) above the 20th century average of 16.4°C (61.5°F). This broke the previous July record set in 1998.” Refer to Figure 1, which is a graph of SST for July from 1982 to 2009 (NOAA’s ERSST.v3b version).

http://i28.tinypic.com/2ut3rzp.png
Figure 1

Borenstein readers are told that July 2009 Sea Surface Temperatures (SSTs) were the highest since records began, but that is false. Figure 2 illustrates monthly SSTs from November 1981 to July 2009. I’ve added a red horizontal line to show the July 2009 value.
http://i28.tinypic.com/wwho49.png
Figure 2

Whether or not July SSTs represented a record is also dependent on the SST dataset. NOAA’s satellite-based Optimally Interpolated (OI,v2) dataset presents a different picture. That dataset clearly shows that July 1998, Figure 3, had a higher SST.
http://i32.tinypic.com/2ynkzsm.png
Figure 3

And looking at the monthly OI.v2 data since November 1981, Figure 4, there are numerous months with higher SSTs.
http://i31.tinypic.com/2hzslme.png
Figure 4

The Borenstein article also claims that Arctic SST anomalies are as high as 10 deg F (5.5 deg C) above average. Wow!! Really??

I used the SST map-making feature of the NOAA NOMADS system to create the map of high latitude Northern Hemisphere SST anomalies for July 2009. The Contour Interval was set at 1 deg C to help find the claimed excessively high SST anomalies. Alas, Borenstein was right, BUT, as you will note, the ONLY area that reaches the 5 to 6 deg C range is the White Sea (indicated by the arrow) off the Barents Sea.
http://i26.tinypic.com/1yk3v7.png
Figure 5

And to put that in perspective, Figure 6 is the global map. Based on the Kartesh White Sea Biological Station website…
http://www.zin.ru/kartesh/general_en.asp
…the surface area of the White Sea is approximately 90,000 sq km. If the surface area of the Arctic Ocean is 14 million sq km, the White Sea represents less than 0.6% of it. And for those who want to compare it to the surface area of the global oceans, its surface area is 361 million sq km. Too many zeroes after the decimal point to worry about.
http://i26.tinypic.com/vzd36t.png
Figure 6

And the SST anomalies of one miniscule area do not represent the SST anomalies for the Arctic Ocean, as is obvious in Figure 7. Arctic SST anomalies have declined over the past few years.

http://i31.tinypic.com/nv8l8k.png
Figure 7

SST anomaly graphs through July 2009 for the Arctic Ocean and other individual oceans can be found at my July 2009 SST Anomaly Update.

To sum up the Borenstein article, it’s factually incorrect in places, and in others, it raises alarmism to ridiculous levels by dwelling on a meaningless statistic, the July SST anomaly of the White Sea.

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98 thoughts on “Borenstein’s AP Sea Surface Temperature Article Is Misleading

  1. If you read other Seth Borenstein articles, you’ll see that his pen is an ever-flowing fountain of untruths, misstatements of facts, and distortion. His “reporting” is literally the worst I have ever seen in two decades of being an avid news reader.

    His agenda could not be more plain, and if he belongs anywhere in the news world (which he doesn’t), it’s on the opinion page. At least there, he could present his slanted views for what they are, instead of the illegitimate tripe he passes off as reporting.

    Seth Borenstein is literally the worst “reporter” I have ever seen. His agenda could not be more plainly a disgrace. Every article he writes is alarmist and biased

    The absolute worst of the worst, and calling him a “reporter” is an insult to every man and woman who has ever written a story with objective facts.

  2. Thanks for providing maps from an external source instead those from the areas “infested” by the virus GW1 (Global Warming 1).
    Precisely you all may consult the FAO work on cold waters fish catches, which shows we are now in a deep of its prediction curve, at:

    http://www.fao.org/docrep/005/y2787e/Y2787E00.HTM

    and at Google:

    http://books.google.com.pe/books?id=q3mGCiLjkBIC&dq=Climate+change+and+long-term+fluctuations+of+commercial+catches:+the+possibility+of+forecasting&printsec=frontcover&source=bl&ots=eeMbhAuqBz&sig=_1lsR1rSR_VCIgSqgHop2hvARQk&hl=es&ei=AhmMSsnhFsiQtge1mejCDQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1#v=onepage&q=&f=false

  3. Thank you very much for your splendid work Mr. Tisdale! AGW propaganda patterns on seizing minutia and inflating it to catastrophic levels. Somewhat like finding a liver spot and announcing to your family in grim tones… that you have cancer.

    We are indebted to you.

  4. Another good piece of debunking by Bob Tisdale. I’d only add the observation that SSTs on a truly global scale are known only during the satellite era. Prior to that, Surface Marine Observations made four times a day by ships of opportunity were virtually the only source of data. SMOs are available primarily from heavily traveled sea lanes, leaving great swaths of ocean with but sparse, sporadic coverage.

    The switch from various sampling buckets (which conformed to oceanographic practice) to ship engine intake temperatures, which took place gradually prior to WWII and acccellerated thereafter, introduced a bias to the data set that has never been adequately accounted for. Engine rooms are pretty hot places and the heat transfer to the intake water by metal is much greater than with standard buckets.

    On the other hand, engine intakes are well below the levels from which water would be sampled by buckets and diurnal variations at a depth of several meters are insignificant, unless sufficient wind mixing is taking place. I’m not convinced that the “bucket adjustment” introduced by Folland adequately accounts for all these factors, leaving the pre-satellite global average SST highly uncertain.

  5. Completely off-topic… I found this page thoroughly entertaining…

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20327155.800-metal-comes-to-the-rescue-of-revolutionary-plane.html

    Why?

    It’s an article about Boeing again having issues getting their 787 into production and service. It contains this quote:

    “Data from the test did not match our computer model,” says Boeing vice-president Scott Fancher. That highlights the difficulty of predicting the behaviour of advanced CFRP materials being used in very large structures for the first time.

    And this advertisement image:

    … on a cover of the very same periodical talking about sea level rise being “worse than we thought.”

    It is getting truly humorous now. I just hope it is publicly obvious when the emperor looks down and realize he is naked.

  6. rbateman (08:21:27) :

    Now what do you suppose Putin is doing in the White Sea these days to get it all heated up?

    That large of an anomaly would make me look for new power plant warm water discharge into the sea or perhaps changes in local drainage into the sea, bringing in warmer water from some continental source. I wonder if there is a high resolution Infrared satellite shot of that area out there that might show up a hot water plume from some industrial activity in the area.

    That large of a SST change would imply either a heat source or a badly sited or corrupted temperature measurement network in the White Sea.

    At least that would be the first two things I would look for rather than taking that large of a temperature change at face value.

    Larry

  7. rbateman (08:21:27) :

    “Now what do you suppose Putin is doing in the White Sea these days to get it all heated up?”

    He’s been conducting the beautiful piece of music by the Finnish compser, Jean Sibelius. I gove you the “Valse Triste”…

  8. Misleading? Naw, he’s just “emotionalized” things a bit. It’s all part of the lead- up to Copenhagen, where “emotionalizing” will be brought to an art form.

  9. well, what about the idea that humanity DOES need to cut down on pollution? let’s say that the earth is NOT warming, how about cutting down about all of the industrial pollution there is in the world?

  10. Larry, that is a huge area to warm up from a powerplant discharge. I don’t think humans have the capability to warm an area of the sea that much. I’d look for errors in the data before I’d look to a physical cause.

  11. All of these graphs show one thing quite transparently. Global warming did not peak in 1998. Temperatures have plateaud since then as a result of short term effects like La Nina and reduced solar activity. The long term trend has not broken – and the satellite measurements back this up.

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/?report=global&year=2009&month=7

    ” # The combined global land and ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the fifth warmest on record, at 0.57°C (1.03°F) above the 20th century average of 15.8°C (60.4°F).
    # July 2009 was the 33rd consecutive July with an average global land and ocean surface temperature above the 20th century average. The last July with global temperatures below the 20th century average occurred in 1976.
    # The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record, 0.59°C (1.06°F) above the 20th century average of 16.4°C (61.5°F). This broke the previous July record set in 1998. The July ocean surface temperature departure from the long-term average equals June 2009 value, which was also a record”.

  12. Stick to the topic phoenix, we’re talking about GW hysterics not pollution.

    This smacks of the typical situation:

    1. outlandish AGW article on page 1
    2. AGW blogs all over it
    3. Article quickly found to be wanting in accruacy
    4. correction to article either not found or on page 57.

    We’ll see

  13. The arctic anomalies have been at the mentioned level for almost all July in many places (why plot July 1st?)

    etc.

  14. The current efforts to cut CO2 such as the Taxman-Malarkey bill result in industrial production being shifted to China and India, with the result that more particulate pollution is created worldwide.

  15. phoenix mattress (08:46:48) : That’s a good idea: Take you mattress out to the garden, burn it and then buy another new one. :-)
    If we add all sources, say of SO2 contamination from all the world, I am sure it will be only a minuscule fraction of one what the active volcanoes are sending right now to the atmosphere. Of course, that contamination is disgusting, to say the least, when in our neighbourhood, but if away its OK.
    The only contamination the supporters of climate change want to remove is human beings. That is called Malthusianism. The founders of these ideas would be deeply surpised if they could revive now in present days because they would find that the people they wanted to disappear, as the chinese, indians and SA indians, are the ones who are supporting the economies of the “superior” races, which, as you know ARE BROKE and just surviving through the magic of printing paper money. How much will it last?
    Will they be able to buy that hateful and contaminant oil or gas for heating their houses during the next Maunder Minimum with their exausted credit cards or fake money?

  16. phoenix mattress: You wrote, “well, what about the idea that humanity DOES need to cut down on pollution? let’s say that the earth is NOT warming, how about cutting down about all of the industrial pollution there is in the world?”

    Pollution is one thing. Anthropogenic global warming is another. This thread has nothing to do with pollution. It is about misleading and less-then-factual reporting.

    Regards

  17. I was intrigued by your name so I clicked the link. I guess you do what it says on the tin!

    I saw a shop in Kuala Lumpur called ‘The Sofa King”. The guy’s line was that they were “Sofa King good…”

    It’s the first time I’ve seen you on this site – hang around – Anthony has won a fantastic community here where open debate is the mandate. No matter what your views are on AGW you are welcome here.

  18. Dennis Ward

    Sea surface temperatures are so few and far between as to be meaningless before satellite data came on line. Land surface temperature are also spotty before then, and adjusted so much as to be laughable. So to say that blah,blah,blah was the 5th warmest on record only means that it was the 5th warmest in the last 30 years.

  19. woodNfish (08:54:15) :

    “Larry, that is a huge area to warm up from a powerplant discharge. I don’t think humans have the capability to warm an area of the sea that much. I’d look for errors in the data before I’d look to a physical cause.”

    But isn’t the AGW case that we humans are affecting the ENTIRE CLIMATE OF THE PLANET????… which is just a wee bit bigger in the grand scheme of things than the White Sea.

  20. “well, what about the idea that humanity DOES need to cut down on pollution? let’s say that the earth is NOT warming, how about cutting down about all of the industrial pollution there is in the world?”
    I don’t think you’d get any argument from anyone on this site, or any other honest blog anywhere on the internet.
    One of the difficulties we skeptics have is in trying to convince the less intelligent supporters of the paradigm that we are not agin recycling (where it makes sense) or energy economy (where it is realistic) or not wasting the earth’s resources of useless packaging or not getting rid of unnecessary industrial pollution.
    But we are not in favour of a civilisation (I use the word advisedly) akin to the late 17th century with all the drawbacks that would follow from that just because a bunch of misguided fanatics is possessed of some illusion that there was some sort of golden age when we all lived in harmony and “where every prospect pleases and only man is vile”.
    It never existed; it doesn’t exist; it never will exist.
    And furthermore the entire concept is anti-social and anti-human because it is intended to maintain the living standards of the elite few while ensuring that all the less fortunate nations of the world remain in their current state of relative poverty.
    On that test alone it deserves to be condemned.

  21. Tom_R (09:11:15) :

    “The current efforts to cut CO2 such as the Taxman-Malarkey bill result in industrial production being shifted to China and India, with the result that more particulate pollution is created worldwide.”

    Yup. I’ve been to China but only the bit from Beijing to Tianjin and it was actually not too bad on the pollution front. I’ve also been to India – mostly Mumbai – and I am sorry to say that it is the filthiest place I have ever been to. Bits of Venezuela are pretty depressing too. I haven’t been to Nigeria but I’ve heard that that isn’t too salubrious either.

    NIMBY is the word.

  22. Flanagan: You wrote, “The arctic anomalies have been at the mentioned level for almost all July in many places (why plot July 1st?),” and provided all those lovely links of daily SST anomalies.

    The maps represent SST anomalies for the entire month of July 2009.

    The coding “00Z01Jul2009″ in the map titles does not represent July 1st 2009. Here’s the link to the NOAA NOMADS website:

    http://nomad3.ncep.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/pdisp_sst.sh?ctlfile=monoiv2.ctl&varlist=on&new_window=on&ptype=map&dir=

    As you can see it says “data available from nov 1981 to jul 2009 at 1 months intervals”. I set the parameters I wanted and clicked on plot.

    Recreate what I’ve done, and read the output.

    Regards

  23. Well with an unlikely record Arctic sea-ice melt, the MSM has to find something they can report on before Copenhagen…
    In Canada the Globe and Mail was so predictable and jumped on this one…

  24. Nogw – As long as “garden” means a place with grass. You don’t want to fertilize your vegetables with mattress.

  25. The question bears repeating:
    What claim about climate, made by an AGW promoter, has withstood any sort of critical scrutiny?

  26. Dennis Ward is quoting the NOAA website for to convince himself that global warming is continuing. I had to laugh at how desparate they sound. Look at this:
    “# The combined global land and ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the fifth warmest on record, at 0.57°C.”
    Does FIFTH warmest sound like a) continuation of rising temperatures or b) hand waving?

    # July 2009 was the 33rd consecutive July with an average global land and ocean surface temperature above the 20th century average.”

    Does this tell us about a) long term average or b) a new rise in temperatures?

    “# The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record, 0.59°C (1.06°F) above the 20th century average of 16.4°C.”

    This is the subject of the current and previous thread and may/probably be debunked in the next few days. What does the argo network say?

  27. Data reported in the article are correct, NOAA global mean ocean temperature are available here:

    http://lwf.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/research/anomalies/index.php

    July mean ocean temperature (1901-2000) is 61.5°F or 16.4°C
    The anomalie has been +1.06°F or +0.59°C thus mean july 2009 ocean temperature is 62.6F or 17°C which is also the higher value of the entire time series( june and july has the higher mean temperature and july has the higher anomaly of the entire time series)…
    This is the NOAA global ocean temperature dataset,you reported that oiv2 has a negative bias from AVHRR thus i do not understand why you still look at that dataset…

  28. “”” John S. (08:37:28) :

    Another good piece of debunking by Bob Tisdale. I’d only add the observation that SSTs on a truly global scale are known only during the satellite era. Prior to that, Surface Marine Observations made four times a day by ships of opportunity were virtually the only source of data. SMOs are available primarily from heavily traveled sea lanes, leaving great swaths of ocean with but sparse, sporadic coverage.

    The switch from various sampling buckets (which conformed to oceanographic practice) to ship engine intake temperatures, which took place gradually prior to WWII and acccellerated thereafter, introduced a bias to the data set that has never been adequately accounted for. Engine rooms are pretty hot places and the heat transfer to the intake water by metal is much greater than with standard buckets.

    On the other hand, engine intakes are well below the levels from which water would be sampled by buckets and diurnal variations at a depth of several meters are insignificant, unless sufficient wind mixing is taking place. I’m not convinced that the “bucket adjustment” introduced by Folland adequately accounts for all these factors, leaving the pre-satellite global average SST highly uncertain. “””

    John, I have also seen that the “bucket tests” were further contaminated since the on deck readings often took place in the presence of evaporation from the bucket.

    More importantly due to ocean current meandering; a ship can return to the exact same co-ordinates, and be in completely different water from a previous visit. Then there is that killer reported by John christy et al in Jan 2001 as a result of about 20 years of ARGO buoy data, comparing the water temperature (at a fixed one metre depth) with the air temperature at a fixed 3 metre altitude; which showed that they aren;t the same, so the bucket tests don’t fit into the lower tropo air temp picture. More importantly, Christy found they aren’t correlated (why would you expect them to be) so the true air temperature data, is not recoverable from all those useless ancient bucket measurements going back 150 years, or how ever long they were doing it.

    So I don’t believe either GISStemp, or HADcrut data prior to around 1980; which also pretty much coincides with the launch of polar orbit satellites that give us UAH and RSS data, not to mention that evil ice data.

    And we are supposed to believe millidegree changes in highly statisticated “derived” numbers ? Humbug !

  29. “””Jimmy Haigh (08:40:49) :

    rbateman (08:21:27) :

    “Now what do you suppose Putin is doing in the White Sea these days to get it all heated up?”

    He’s been conducting the beautiful piece of music by the Finnish compser, Jean Sibelius. I gove you the “Valse Triste”… “””

    Yeah; gimme a break. If there is one composer that Putin would not be conducting, it would be Jean Sibelius; so perhaps he would do “Finlandia” for an encore. Yeah and risk having the Finns invade Russia to grab his sorry A***.

    But hey thanks for the musical interlude; just hits the spot for a Friday morning.

    George

  30. Per the article: Good Job and “well played!”. Nice bit of “media forensics”…

    phoenix mattress (08:46:48) : well, what about the idea that humanity DOES need to cut down on pollution? let’s say that the earth is NOT warming, how about cutting down about all of the industrial pollution there is in the world?

    I’m all for it. You know, things like NOx and SOx and polychlorinated biphenyls and heavy metal ions, for sure. Cadmium, IMHO, ought to be (nearly) completely banned world wide. It substitutes for Zinc in a whole bunch of enzyme systems and just royally screws up living systems.

    That the EU gives NiCd batteries a ‘pass’ in their near complete ban on Cd gives you an idea what politics does to wisdom…

    The problem, and it is a major problem, is when folks (like the one this article is about) use fraudulent analysis to declare CO2 to be a “pollutant” (which they have done). At that point, your statement becomes a problem (perhaps against your will).

    I have absolutely no desire, and the earth has absolutely no need, to reduce the CO2 generation in the world. To do so would result in horrid catastrophic results both for humanity and for the natural world I want to protect (No, that is not hyperbole. People who know me know that I tend toward understatement and do not bend the truth to support an agenda.) The path to “saving the world” passes directly through a modern technical and wealthy global society, and THAT passes through fossil fuels.

    So your statement, as given, suffers from the “rubber ruler” syndrome in that “pollution” is ill defined (and is now being redefined based on political agenda). Make it a specific list of issues, especially those with demonstrable and bad impacts on specific living metabolic systems and I’m all for it. (Basically, prevent the ruler from being stretched and warped…)

    “Bad money drives out good.” is a truth for all time. And the present tendency of the radical greens and looney left to corrupt and redefine words makes those words “bad money”. That is being done to the word “pollution” (and in a broader sense to science in general…).

    The end result is that folks move on to other words (and other methods of learning the truth). The radical right tries to do some of this too (“moment of silence” – heck call it a prayer moment and be honest. The constitution does not ban public prayer, it bans establishment of a state religion…) but far less effectively. Note that I’m an equal opportunity lambaster ;-)

    So as soon as you go fishing for support for “reducing pollution” I now have warning flags and hackles raised. Not because I’m against cleaning up the world, I’m all for it. But because your words have been corrupted into “bad money” by the AGW movement and that leaves me wondering what you really mean…

    And frankly, that “stealing and corruption of good words” is one of the things that bothers me most about the PC movement and AGW advocates. It makes it very hard to keep a tidy mind and be honest above all else. How can you retain honesty when the words themselves are changed to lies?

    Sidebar: An amusing example of this, not science related, is the constant mutation of “male worlds” into “female words”. “Girl” in Shakespeare’s time meant a young male. It became a somewhat effeminate male, added some women to the group, then mutated into what we think of today, a young female. Similarly, “Guy” once meant “Mature Male” as in Guys and Dolls as contrasts. Now “guy” has become non-gender (as in “you guys want to go to the mall?” aimed a mixed gender group). Give it a few more decades it may well mean what (the now politically incorrect) Doll used to mean – “Mature Female”. We regularly invent new “male words” that regularly get PC’d to include females, that then get abandoned for use for males. A “PC” takeover of a word only works for a short time, in any generation.

    So, “Phoenix”, the problem you have is that the word “pollution” is going to be abandoned. (Heck, this posting shows I’ve already abandoned it for precision uses.) So I can not support your statement as made, because it is based on a rubber ruler for “bad stuff in the environment” that now includes “good stuff for plants”. But make it more precise, and dump and PC’d words from it, and I’m all in favor of taking truly toxic things out of the air, water, and soil.

    (And yes, the fact that I have to go through all these gyrations because some folks corrupted the word “pollution” does peeve me greatly.)

  31. Hi Phoenix (above)

    I agree, you have a good point. I have a few problems with the prevailing climate change hysteria. Number 1 is that people feel it’s ok to lie in order to advance a cause. When people base what needs to be done on lies, half facts, willful distortions or simple assumptions, it means that we’re not reacting effectively to what’s actually going on- we’re not interacting with the real world, but an ideologised one. That ideologised world may fit with our understandings and beliefs about how things work, but it’s still wrong! If we’re going to pour an endless amount of money and energy into reducing C02, while C02 was never a problem to begin with, for the sake of feeling good about doing something… I just can’t see a value in that.

    That ties into the second problem I have- the problem of flattening the whole environmental cause down to a single issue- CO2. There are other environmental problems to deal with, including the various forms of industrial pollution that you mention, and of course pressing humanitarian concerns, but it sometimes seems like no-one’s interested in these things anymore.(?) Indeed, it starts to feel as though we’re ready to do anything to cut down on C02 and avert warming (probably the first culture in the history of humanity to view warming as a bad thing), including bizarre geo engineering schemes such as pouring hydrogen sulfide into the atmosphere. Time and money… and who knows what else?

    Until a few years ago I was a dyed in the wool AGW believer. I started questioning what I was hearing when media reports of the record 2007 arctic melt failed to include information about the record gains occurring at the same time in the Antarctic. That’s when I realised that it’s not what you’re being told, it’s what you’re not being told, that makes all the difference.

    At the end of the day- who wants to be lied to? How human is that? How responsible is that? Without wanting to sound over simplistic-just do what you gotta do because it’s the right thing to do. :)

    PS, the global sea ice story…

    Cheers :)

  32. the art of emotionalizing AKA the art of lying and using deception to promote a perceived greater good.

    Dictatorships throught the ages have used the very same principle to mobilise a recalcitrant population, such leaders as Mao,Hitler,Stalin have used it to great short term effect, the channeling of a miriad of different interests in order to create a singular will.
    This usually involves the creation of a scapegoat or exterior threat, fear is a great tool as there is almost no limit to what people will do when suitably frightened enough, hence you have fear of the Russian hordes,capitalist running dogs,Jews,peoples enemies the list is endless all chosen to unite a population behind to face a perceived threat and/or to change a populations behaviour patterns.
    The truth begins to fade rapidly, the truth becomes merely an uncomfortable irritation when it invetitably impinges on the artificial political construct called in this case AGW/AAM/MMCC.
    The road to hell is paved with good intentions we are told from a young age and its just as well because history is littered with such examples of good intentions turned into living nightmares.
    The question I ask is, is it worth running the risk of a runaway downward spiral of lies to promote what is considered a worthy cause?
    I have little doubt that many people who peddle the theories of AAM have the best of intentions believing that they are safeguarding humanity yet they show as yet little awareness of the possible dire side effects of their means to an end.

  33. phoenix mattress (08:46:48) : Perhaps there is one misunderstanding here. Perhaps you are thinking in CO2 gas being BLACK, but IT IS NOT, IT IS the gas WE ALL EXHALE and PLANTS BREATH and enjoy.

  34. Sam the Skeptic (09:25:17) You are correct when saying:
    all the less fortunate nations of the world remain in their current state of relative poverty.
    And this is indeed relative. A few days ago, last sunday, I was talking to a client, owner of a chemical plant, who told me that in his childhood as a “poor” indian in a village high in the peruvian andes, he and his family used to buy only salt and sugar, because that was all they needed to live, totally different to our case “rich” people who if we lose our job the next day we are starving. (He added that, in some years, they managed even not to buy salt but get it from a near salt mine, carrying it using some donkeys to their village. In those cases it lasted for a year).

  35. gp2: You wrote, “Data reported in the article are correct, NOAA global mean ocean temperature are available here”

    I didn’t question the data. This post discussed the less-than-factual reporting of the data. You must have missed that.

    You wrote, “you reported that oiv2 has a negative bias from AVHRR thus i do not understand why you still look at that dataset…”

    First, NOAA corrects for satellite high-latitude bias in OI.v2 data. OI.v2 is satellite data that is supplemented with buoy and ship-based data.

    I use OI.v2 data because GISS uses it in their GISTEMP product.

    I use it because the data is available on weekly and monthly bases directly from NOAA through their NOMADS website. Also, your statement assumes that buoys and ship-based readings don’t have biases in the other direction.

    Consider this. The NCDC went to a lot of work to create their new ERSST.v3 dataset. It was released early in 2008, heralded with a paper that described all of the benefits of the satellite-based data. Other parties complained of the downward bias in recent years and the NCDC stopped the monthly ERSST.v3 updates. Four or five months later they released the ERSST.v3b dataset, with the explanation of why they eliminated the satellite-based data. In effect, it was peer pressure. The satellite data lowered the short-term and long-term trends.

    Also, the satellite bias, if it exists, impacts only recent years. The late 1990s don’t appear to have any drift problems. And If they know of the drift problem, why don’t they correct it? RSS and UAH make drift corrections all the time.

  36. The White Sea is very shallow and almost cut off from the ocean, so potentially it can heat fairly quickly if the weather is fine and sunny. Still I rather doubt that figure, at least for the present date. Solovetsk Island in the White Sea had max and min temperatures of 12 and 8 degrees Centigrade yesterday, which indicates a sea temperature around 10 degrees. Coastal sites like Archangelsk had minimum temperatures barely above freezing which does not suggest very varm waters either.

  37. phoenix mattress (08:46:48) :

    “””well, what about the idea that humanity DOES need to cut down on pollution? let’s say that the earth is NOT warming, how about cutting down about all of the industrial pollution there is in the world?”””

    As long as man is on the earth, anyone can proclaim “humanity DOES need to cut down on pollution”. As such, the “idea” (or statement) in isolation is valueless. Unless you’re in the camp that “man and everything he does are inherently evil”, the “idea” that has merit involves tradeoffs between the beneficial and harmful effects of man’s activities, both to man and the environment in general. If people took the time from their busy to consider the issue, I believe that most humans would agree that man should continually be aware of his effect on the environment; but that doesn’t mean man should cease all industrial activity. Man is part of the environment, too.

    And if after analyzing the tradeoffs of one or more of man’s industrial activities, you conclude that those activities are inappropriately polluting the environment, then instead of voicing platitudes, you should (1) make your case, including tradeoffs and describing specific ways to improve the situation, and (2) be upset with the AGW alarmists because their unsubstantiated claims are causing legitimate arguments to lose credibility with the general public.

    Reed Coray

  38. Nogw (10:14:52) :

    Your story is similar to this one. I worked in the foothills of the Andes for a month in 1998. Me and another geologist spend 4 weeks in a tent while doing field mapping in the Amazon jungle. It was an absolutely fascinating place. Billions of ants, bees the size of your fist and frogs as big as basketballs. We stayed near a place called Isinuta. We arrived there on their ‘national day’ and all the males of the village were pissed out of their minds and drinking something that looked like blood mixed with curdled milk. We both like a beer but we declined their offer of joining them in a toast. The village population was about 1000? All the women were pregnant – some of them I guessed were about 12 years old. Everyone looked the same and basically they were one big family who sirvived by inbreeding. A group of about 4 women had just returned from a 6 day return trip on foot to the town of Trinidad where they had gone to buy salt. The idyllic green lifestyle?

    When I went there I was pretty fit and weighed about 10 stone 7. When I got back to civilisation after the 4 weeks there I weighed 9 stone 7.

  39. Something else for the Armageddonistas to obsess over: The White Sea anomaly is caused by radiation leaking from a sunken Soviet-era ‘boomer’ that went down when some Marxist moron reading Pravda forget to close the silo hatches.

  40. phoenix mattress (08:46:48) :

    well, what about the idea that humanity DOES need to cut down on pollution? let’s say that the earth is NOT warming, how about cutting down about all of the industrial pollution there is in the world?

    phoenix,

    Assume for a moment, you are in charge.

    What would you have humanity do?

    Regards,

    Jack

  41. 000
    NOCA42 TJSJ 011628
    PNSSJU

    PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
    NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN JUAN PR
    1228 PM AST SAT AUG 1 2009

    …SAYING GOOD BYE TO A VERY UNUSUAL MONTH…JULY 2009..

    End of message

    ON THE OTHER HAND…YOU MIGHT MEET SOMEONE FROM FROM CHICAGO
    WHERE THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE WAS 68.9 MAKING IT THE COOLEST JULY
    SINCE 1942 WHEN THE STATION WAS MOVED AWAY FROM THE LAKEFRONT…OR
    GRAND RAPIDS MICHIGAN THAT BROKE THEIR RECORD COOLEST JULY SET IN
    1992. OR MORE LIKELY SOMEONE FROM NEW YORK CITY WHICH HAD ITS
    SECOND COLDEST JULY. YOU MIGHT EVEN MEET SOMEONE FROM THE SOUTH
    POLE WHICH HAD A BONE CHILLING AVERAGE TEMPERATURE OF MINUS 86.8
    DEGREES FAHRENHEIT BREAKING THE RECORD SET BACK IN JULY 1965.
    THEIR LOWEST TEMPERATURE LAST MONTH WAS ONLY 108.2 DEGREES…BELOW
    ZERO. IT MAKES OUR MID 80S AVERAGE LOOK POSITIVELY INVITING.

    $$

    SNELL

  42. Dennis Ward

    We live in a planet which is normally warm and virtually ice free. We are currently in an interglacial period where there has naturally been warming. If you want to join the discussion please show or link us to sources that show beyond dispute that the current warming is due to man made CO2 rather than other climate forcing. Could you perhaps explain why, historically, CO2 levels far in excess of current values have not triggered runaway warming, how we have had glaciation with far higher levels and how we have had higher temperatures with lower CO2 levels.

  43. tty (10:41:34) :
    Your information should be added to the the head of this post.
    That’s the stuff of an almost perfect BIAS. (BTW the origin of the colorful display of NOAA maps)

  44. Anthony,

    I was wondering if the White Sea Anomaly is the result of “smearing” the color around a bit. The Stieg et al method. Has anyone taken a look?

  45. It seems to me that Seth Borenstein is not following the instructions given to him by the contextual “karma anagram” of his own name, insert be honest. Thus, it is no wonder that by not following that suggestion the words he writes turn out the way that they do.

  46. comment copied from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/france/6049302/Tourists-warned-as-Asian-hornets-terrorise-French.html

    BREAKING NEWS…
    A recent scientific study into the serial and systemic breakdown of journalistic integrity suggests that global warming is to blame. Professor Ned Schlobotnic of The Oliver Stone School of Retconned US History states ” It would appear that increased global temperatures have caused the average journalist’s brain to swell to a degree that rational thought is often impeded. In a normal person’s brain, this has no real effect as a normal brain expands only a fraction of its original size…but a journalist’s brain, the size of a mere chick-pea, any degree of swelling practically doubles it’s size, so you can readily see where their cognitive ability would be impaired.”

  47. dennis ward (08:55:48)

    Without addressing the issue of whether or not your figures are accurate, they’re still not meaningful by themselves. Many here (myself included) see a cyclical pattern of rising and falling temperatures thru-out history, and easily preceding the invention of the SUV. If you refer to a start point along the the rising part of a curve in a cyclical pattern (as you have), then it is possible to declare every year higher than the first until you pass below the initial level on the down slope in the latter half of the cycle.

    Since you recognize that La Nina predominance and extended minima result in falling temps, you’ve painted yourself into the corner of admitting that El Nino predominance and solar maxima begat rising temps as well.

  48. Bob Tisdale

    You question the data when you write:
    “Borenstein does not clarify that it is a record for the month of July, where NOAA does. ”

    This is not true, the sum of the highest mean temperature(16.4° for July) and the highest anomaly of the entire time series(not only july) gives the higher mean temperature of the entire time series not only July according to NOAA ocean dataset.
    ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/anomalies/monthly.ocean.90S.90N.df_1901-2000mean.dat

  49. My apologies for not having read all the above comments – does anyone have a read on how this corrrsponds with ARGO data?

  50. dennis ward: You wrote, “All of these graphs show one thing quite transparently. Global warming did not peak in 1998.”

    Causation was not the topic of this post or thread. But since you insist… In numerous other posts that Anthony co-posted here, I’ve shown how the rise in global SST anomalies since 1976 is the result of step changes caused by El Nino events. Here are links to a two-part post “Can El Nino Events Explain All Of The Global Warming Since 1976?”
    Part 1:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/can-el-nino-events-explain-all-of.html

    Part 2:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/can-el-nino-events-explain-all-of_11.html

    Here’s a similar post that uses a Time-Latitude Plot (Hovmoller) from RSS to illustrate the same effect in TLT anomalies:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/06/rss-msu-tlt-time-latitude-plots.html

    And a here’s yet another one, a few days old, that used Hovmollers of Low Latitude Pacific SST anomalies to show the same effect:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/08/hovmollers-of-pacific-low-latitude-sst.html

    If you have any questions when you’re done reading those posts and all of the links they contain, please ask.

  51. let’s say that the earth is NOT warming, how about cutting down about all of the industrial pollution there is in the world?

    That can be done cheaply, effectively, and without excessive expense. (And, to the great benefit of the environment, with greater emissions of CO2.)

  52. I got reamed over at Daily Kos for questioning an even more alarmist post than the Borenstein article. The article supposedly quoted from an AP article –

    “And in the Arctic, water temperatures are up 10 degrees. ”

    The AP article said –

    “It’s most noticeable near the Arctic, where water temperatures are as much as 10 degrees above average.”

    Which is bad enough – seeing as how the extreme difference was only in one locale. But the misquote in Daily Kos has a fundamentally different meaning – i.e. that the entire Arctic was 10 degrees warmer.

    When I pointed out that this was a crock, I was called a “denier” and worse. It seems that they had little concern for the misrepresentation of data.

    <>

    I must add a caveat. I am quite left-leaning and a liberal. I simply want to see materials presented honestly and discussed openly. That is my definition of liberalism.

  53. PaulHClark: You asked, “does anyone have a read on how this corrrsponds with ARGO data?”

    ARGO data is not available in a user-friendly basis, or if it is, I haven’t found it.

    If memory serves me well, ARGO floats appear on the surface every 10 days to take samples and transmit data. The rest of the time they’re dropping down to maximum depths or rising up from it, sampling as they go. There are other float systems that have been in place for multiple decades, such as the TAO project floats in the tropical Pacific, but retrieval of their data also isn’t user friendly.

  54. PaulHClark (12:36:14) :

    I was wondering the same thing earlier on in the day, but the only thing I could find was on the ARGO site itself. It talks about a study done by Rommhein & Gilson which showed warming of 0.06degC from the sixties to this year.

  55. “There is a significant difference between what Seth Borenstein reported and what NOAA stated in the July “State of the Climate”… Borenstein does not clarify that it is a record for the month of July…”

    This is what the NOAA press release says: “The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record, 0.59°C (1.06°F) above the 20th century average of 16.4°C (61.5°F). This broke the previous July record set in 1998.”

    This is what I read in the Borenestein article: “The world’s oceans this summer are the warmest on record.

    The National Climatic Data Center, the government agency that keeps weather records, says the average global ocean temperature in July was 62.6 degrees. That’s the hottest since record-keeping began in 1880. The previous record was set in 1998.”

    I don’t see any “significant difference” between Borenstein’s article and the NOAA press release, rather the same data presented in a slightly different order. One might dispute the term “summer” in Borenstein’s lead, but since the June ocean temperature was also the warmest on record, this would be a minor quibble.

  56. Jeremy (08:38:10) :

    “Completely off-topic… I found this page thoroughly entertaining…

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20327155.800-metal-comes-to-the-rescue-of-revolutionary-plane.html

    Why?

    It’s an article about Boeing again having issues getting their 787 into production and service. It contains this quote:

    “Data from the test did not match our computer model,” says Boeing vice-president Scott Fancher. That highlights the difficulty of predicting the behaviour of advanced CFRP materials being used in very large structures for the first time.

    And this advertisement image:

    … on a cover of the very same periodical talking about sea level rise being “worse than we thought.”

    It is getting truly humorous now. I just hope it is publicly obvious when the emperor looks down and realize he is naked”.

    Jeremy,

    Apart from the loss of time resulting in late deliveries, these changes will have a devastating effect on the design of this aircraft.
    It will end up a far cry from the original specifications.
    It will be more expensive to build, it will be heavier, resulting in a lower pay load and it will be less fuel efficient.

    But the result will be better computer models.

  57. Dave (09:00:44) “Stick to the topic phoenix, we’re talking about GW hysterics not pollution.”


    OBJECTION to Dave’s comment:

    ‘phoenix mattress’ raises a fundamentally salient point.

    A new breed of spiteful & dishonest environmentalists (including some corrupt scientists) has ripped the environmental movement to shreds, tearing it apart from the inside out.

    Effectively, the environmental movement has been divided & conquered by itself.

    This is a tragedy.

    I raised a red flag, warning my colleagues & contacts about this trajectory in the past. Things have progressed exactly how I imagined.

    Meanwhile, serious environmental problems have been pushed right off the radars to make room for fake problems.


    Might we see more step-rises in global T with each El Nino as Bob Tisdale has shown us for El Ninos in the recent past? Why should the pattern suddenly stop & reverse?…

    …If one believes some of the regulars around here, “the sun does nothing“, “the deep ocean can have no effect”, “solar system oscillations have no effect” — in summary: some are hoping we have 5-year-old-minds that are gullible enough to feel comforted by a “nothing has any effect” lullaby – laughable for sure.

    The conservative mind trying to make sense of all the flying-fur might opt for prudence:
    1) Be prepared for warming &/or cooling (whatever the cause).
    2) Fight toxicity (not CO2, which is plant food) on legitimate grounds.

    For those who need a little more to feel inspired, I will add one more:
    3) Abandon large amounts of pavement to make way for natural (not genetically-modified) forest. DO NOT MENTION CO2 in advocating this – (you’ll look like a total whack-job &/or distortion-artist if you do – so stick to legitimate arguments).

    The way to weather climate change (whatever its cause & direction) is via natural population health (i.e. NOT via scandalous politicized obfuscation about CO2).

    Diversity is the key to survival – in other words: not all eggs in one *A*GW basket.

    Paul Vaughan
    Ecologist, Parks & Natural Forest Advocate


    A picture is worth 1000 words?
    Earth’s polar motion is telling a story and few are listening…

    Beware those who use baseball bats to suppress open-mindedness about the unknown & nature’s raw complexity. Due to their sloppy tactics, their agenda has become clear: the protection of belief paradigms inspired by (1) religion, (2) flawed & selfish discipline-centric dogma, & (3) anthropogenic computer fantasies —– a potently toxic combination when mixed.

  58. The White Sea isn’t a sea at all. It is a shallow coastal inlet (average depth 60 meters) similar to Chesapeake Bay for example.

  59. Espen (11:56:45) :

    Something is strange around Arkhangelsk, it shows up as a “heat island” in this map of European july temperatures:

    Check Aug/Sep 2008, 2007, 2006. Same heat island every year….

  60. Brendan H: “I don’t see any ‘significant difference’ between Borenstein’s article and the NOAA press release, rather the same data presented in a slightly different order. One might dispute the term ‘summer’ in Borenstein’s lead, but since the June ocean temperature was also the warmest on record, this would be a minor quibble.”

    The headline and the article are incorrect because they do not clarify that the record is for the month of July. He writes that it occurred in July, but the July SST is not the all-time record SST, as his article implies. I’ve illustrated that with graphs from two SST datasets.

    You selectively quoted part of the sentence in which I wrote “Borenstein does not clarify that it is a record for the month of July, where NOAA does”. Did you miss the meaning of the entire sentence?

  61. John Egan (13:34:45) “When I pointed out that [...] I was called a “denier” and worse. [...] I must add a caveat. I am quite left-leaning and a liberal. [...]“

    There is nothing inconsistent with being a liberal (or even a left-winger) and at the same time being non-alarmist. Supporters of any political party who are incapable of evading climate distortion are a serious liability. (This applies to right, left, & centre (i.e. liberal) parties as well as to any parties that do not see themselves as occupying a position on a left-right spectrum.) Thank you for sharing your comment.

  62. From Wikipedia:

    “Terrorism is the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion.[1] At present, there is no internationally agreed definition of terrorism.[2][3] Common definitions of terrorism refer only to those acts which are intended to create fear (terror), are perpetrated for an ideological goal (as opposed to a lone attack), and deliberately target or disregard the safety of non-combatants.”

    The proposed revision of the Australian terrorism laws includes:

    “Under the proposed changes there will be a new terrorism hoax offence, punishable by up to 10 years’ jail, for anyone seeking to create a false belief that a terrorist act will occur.”

    Mr Borenstein’s article would appear to be “seeking to create a false belief” to “create fear and terror” regarding Man’s effect on the world.

    We need someone to invite all of the fear-mongering, biased reporters (and others) to Australia.

  63. George E. Smith (09:47:48):

    There’s a good reason oceanographers developed sampling buckets in the first place: they provide a fair sample of the uppermost layer of water. Once hauled on deck, the evaporation may be different than that of the surface skin in sItu, but, done right, this scarcely affects the thermometer readings of the interior contents. No oceanographer would ever confuse SSTs with near-surface air temperatures. Only Hadley and GISS mix the two together in a single index. This leaves me wondering what you’re driving at in citing my post.

  64. Remember 10 years of steady to cooling temperatures does not equal climate but one month of warm temperatures does equal climate.

  65. Somehow a record high in July is the undeniable proof of AGW. If it has been all warming all along, why haven’t we seen record April, May, June yet?

  66. Bob Tisdale: “The headline and the article are incorrect because they do not clarify that the record is for the month of July.”

    NOAA: “The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record…”

    Borenstein: “The National Climatic Data Center, the government agency that keeps weather records, says the average global ocean temperature in July was 62.6 degrees. That’s the hottest since record-keeping began in 1880.”

    Both the above mention July.

    “He writes that it occurred in July, but the July SST is not the all-time record SST, as his article implies.”

    But NOAA says it is, as above, and Borenstein repeats the claim.

    “You selectively quoted part of the sentence in which I wrote “Borenstein does not clarify that it is a record for the month of July, where NOAA does”. Did you miss the meaning of the entire sentence?”

    I understand the sentence to mean that Borenstein does not say that the record is for the month of July, whereas NOAA does say that it is for the month of July. But as the quotes above show, Borenstein follows NOAA in saying that the record relates to July.

  67. Brendan H: Regarding your 21:19:44 reply, you still miss the point. Borenstein says the July SST was THE record SST, but NOAA clarifies that it was a record for the month of July. There is a difference and it is significant.

  68. phoenix mattress (08:46:48)

    “Let’s say that the earth is NOT warming…”

    Yes, for the sake of argument, let’s assume that increasing CO2 is unrelated to increasing global temperatures.
    The other problem would remain. Increasing CO2 results in increasing ocean acidification.

  69. Bob Tisdale: Brendan H: Regarding your 21:19:44 reply, you still miss the point. Borenstein says the July SST was THE record SST, but NOAA clarifies that it was a record for the month of July. There is a difference and it is significant.”

    Yes, but NOAA also says the July figure is the warmest on record. So it may be the warmest for July, but also the warmest overall. NOAA’s figures seem to support this interpretation:

    ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/anomalies/monthly.ocean.90S.90N.df_1901-2000mean.dat

  70. The El Nino phenomenon can clearly affect local sea surface tremperatures,thats what El Nino is,but surely shifting surface water around in the Pacific, by whatever the mechanism is, cannot affect total global temperature, or heat balance. Can it ? If so, how?

  71. Brendan H: You wrote, “NOAA’s figures seem to support this interpretation.”

    This may seem nitpicky to you but the dataset being discussed by NOAA and by Bernstein is SST, not SST anomaly. Again, there is a difference. Also, whether the July 2009 SST anomaly is a record high depends on which NOAA dataset you use. Their OI.v2 dataset clearly shows that the 1997, 1998, 2003 and 2005 had higher SST anomalies:

    The graph is from my monthly update here:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/08/july-2009-sst-anomaly-update.html

  72. Francis (09:18:44) :

    phoenix mattress (08:46:48)

    “Let’s say that the earth is NOT warming…”

    “Yes, for the sake of argument, let’s assume that increasing CO2 is unrelated to increasing global temperatures.
    The other problem would remain. Increasing CO2 results in increasing ocean acidification.”

    Francis,

    No Francis, ocean acidification is another hoax which is debunked time after time but keeps coming up time after time based on BS.
    So, as our local warmer, Francis, please asnwer the questions asked in the article.

    The article:
    In response to a question concerning the likelihood of our oceans becoming acidic from global warming Ian Plimer, University of Adelaide, has replied:

    THE oceans have remained alkaline during the Phanerozoic (last 540 million years) except for a very brief and poorly understood time 55 million years ago.

    Rainwater (pH 5.6) reacts with the most common minerals on Earth (feldspars) to produce clays, this is an acid consuming reaction, alkali and alkaline earths are leached into the oceans (which is why we have saline oceans), silica is redeposited as cements in sediments, the reaction consumes acid and is accelerated by temperature (see below).

    In the oceans, there is a buffering reaction between the sea floor basalts and sea water (see below). Sea water has a local and regional variation in pH (pH 7.8 to 8.3). It should be noted that pH is a log scale and that if we are to create acid oceans, then there is not enough CO2 in fossil fuels to create oceanic acidity because most of the planet’s CO2 is locked up in rocks.

    When we run out of rocks on Earth or plate tectonics ceases, then we will have acid oceans.

    In the Precambrian, it is these reactions that rapidly responded to huge changes in climate (-40 deg C to +50 deg C), large sea level changes (+ 600m to -640m) and rapid climate shifts over a few thousand years from ’snowball’ or ’slushball’ Earth to very hot conditions (e.g. Neoproterozoic cap carbonates that formed in water at ~50 deg C lie directly on glacial rocks). During these times, there were rapid changes in oceanic pH and CO2 was removed from the oceans as carbonate. It is from this time onwards (750 Ma) that life started to extract huge amounts of CO2 from the oceans, life has expanded and diversified and this process continues (which is why we have low CO2 today.

    The history of CO2 and temperature shows that there is no correlation.

    Ask your local warmer:

    1. Why was CO2 15 times higher than now in the Ordovician-Silurian glaciation?

    2. Why were both methane and CO2 higher than now in the Permian glaciation?

    3. Why was CO2 5 times higher than now in the Cretaceous-Jurassic glaciation?

    The process of removing CO2 from the atmosphere via the oceans has led to carbonate deposition (i.e. CO2 sequestration).

    The atmosphere once had at least 25 times the current CO2 content, we are living at a time when CO2 is the lowest it has been for billions of years, we continue to remove CO2 via carbonate sedimentation from the oceans and the oceans continue to be buffered by water-rock reactions (as shown by Walker et al. 1981).

    The literature on this subject is large yet the warmers chose to ignore this literature.

    These feldspar and silicate buffering reactions are well understood, there is a huge amount of thermodynamic data on these reactions and they just happened to be omitted from argument by the warmers.

    When ocean pH changes, the carbon species responds and in more acid oceans CO2 as a dissolved gas becomes more abundant.

    Royer, D. L., Berner, R. A. and Park, J. 2007: Climate sensitivity constrained by CO2 concentrations over the past 420 million years. Nature 446: 530-532.
    Bice, K. L., Huber, B. T. and Norris, R. D. 2003: Extreme polar warmth during the Cretaceous greenhouse? Paradox of Turonian ∂18O record at Deep Sea Drilling Project Site 511. Palaeoceanography 18:1-11.
    Veizer, J., Godderis, Y. and Francois, L. M. 2000: Evidence for decoupling of atmospheric CO2 and global climate during the Phanerozoic eon. Nature 408: 698-701.
    Donnadieu, Y., Pierehumbert, R., Jacob, R. and Fluteau, F. 2006: Cretaceous climate decoupled from CO2 evolution. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 248: 426-437.
    Hay, W. W., Wold, C. N., Soeding, E. and Floegel, S. 2001: Evolution of sediment fluxes and ocean salinity. In: Geologic modeling and simulation: sedimentary systems (Eds Merriam, D. F. and Davis, J. C.), Kluwer, 163-167.
    Knauth, L. P. 2005: Temperature and salinity history of the Precambrian ocean: implications for the course of microbial evolution. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 219: 53-69.
    Rogers, J. J. W. 1996: A history of the continents in the past three billion years. Journal of Geology 104: 91-107.
    Velbel, M. A. 1993: Temperature dependence of silicate weathering in nature: How strong a negative feedback on long-term accumulation of atmospheric CO2 and global greenhouse warming? Geology 21:1059-1061
    Kump, L. R., Brantley, S. L. and Arthur, M. A. 2000: Chemical weathering, atmospheric CO2 and climate. Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences 28: 611-667.
    Gaillardet, J., Dupré, B., Louvat, P. and Allègre, C. J. 1999: Global silicate weathering and CO2 consumption rates deduced from the chemistry of large rivers. Chemical Geology 159: 3-30.
    Berner, R. A., Lasagna, A. C. and Garrels, R. M. 1983: The carbonate-silicate geochemical cycle and its effect on atmospheric carbon dioxide over the past 100 million years. American Journal of Science 283: 641-683.
    Raymo, M. E. and Ruddiman, W. F. 1992: Tectonic forcing of late Cenozoic climate. Nature 359: 117-122.
    Walker, J. C. B., Hays, P. B. and Kasting, J. F. 1981: A negative feedback mechanism for the long term stabilization of the Earth’s surface temperature. Journal of Geophysical Research 86: 9776-9782.
    Berner, R. A. 1980: Global CO2 degassing and the carbon cycle: comment on ‘Cretaceous ocean crust at DSDP sites 417 and 418: carbon uptake from weathering vs loss by magmatic activity.” Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 54: 2889.
    Schwartzman, D. W. and Volk, T. 1989: Biotic enhancement of weathering and the habitability of Earth. Nature 311: 45-47.
    Berner, R. A. 1980: Global CO2 degassing and the carbon cycle: comment on ‘Cretaceous ocean crust at DSDP sites 417 and 418: carbon uptake from weathering vs loss by magmatic activity.” Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 54: 2889.
    CO2 + H2O = H2CO3
    H2CO3 = H+ + HCO3-
    2Ca2+ + 2HCO3- + KAl2AlSi3O10(OH)2 + 4H2O = 3Al3+ + K+ + 6SiO2 + 12H2O
    2KAlSi3O8 + 2H+ + H2O = Al2Si2O5(OH)4 + 2K+ + 4SiO2
    2NaAlSi3O8 + 2H+ + H2O = Al2Si2O5(OH)4 + 2K+ + 4SiO2
    CaAl2Si2O8 + 2H+ + H2O = Al2Si2O5(OH)4 + Ca2+
    KAl2AlSi3O10(OH)2 + 3Si(OH)4 + 10H+ = 3Al3+ + K+ + 6SiO2 + 12H2O
    CO2 + CaSiO3 = CaCO3 + SiO2
    CO2 + FeSiO3 = FeCO3 + SiO2
    CO2 + MgSiO3 = MgCO3 + SiO2

    In the oceans, CO2 exists as dissolved gas (1%), HCO3- (93%) and CO32- (8%)

    http://jennifermarohasy.com/blog/2008/10/not-enough-co2-to-make-oceans-acidic-a-note-from-professor-plimer/

  73. Francis (09:18:44) :

    The other problem would remain. Increasing CO2 results in increasing ocean acidification.

    Which still leaves us with those age-old questions:

    By how much?
    By when?
    and
    So-what?

  74. Chris Korvin: You asked, “The El Nino phenomenon can clearly affect local sea surface tremperatures,thats what El Nino is,but surely shifting surface water around in the Pacific, by whatever the mechanism is, cannot affect total global temperature, or heat balance. Can it ? If so, how?”

    Significant El Nino events like those in 1986/87/88 and 1997/98 have long-lasting impacts on global temperature. They create step changes in the mid-to-high latitude TLT anomalies of the Northern Hemisphere as illustrated in the following post:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/06/rss-msu-tlt-time-latitude-plots.html

    They also create step changes in SST anomalies of the East Indian and West Pacific Oceans…

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/can-el-nino-events-explain-all-of.html

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/01/can-el-nino-events-explain-all-of_11.html

    …and in the North Atlantic. In the North Atlantic, they happen on top of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation signal:

    http://bobtisdale.blogspot.com/2009/02/there-are-also-el-nino-induced-step.html

  75. Bob Tisdale: “This may seem nitpicky to you but the dataset being discussed by NOAA and by Bernstein is SST, not SST anomaly.”

    Yes, but a record warm temperature anomaly in July indicates the likelihood of a high absolute temperature.

    More to the point, did Borenstein accurately report the NOAA press release? I think the relevant quote here is his lead: “The world’s oceans this summer are the warmest on record.”

    That is a reasonably accurate representation of the NOAA PR: “The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record…” especially given that the June record was the same.

  76. Have salinity & temperature by depth measurements been taken in the Pacific Warm Pool? Being in the lee of Asia maybe the amount evaporated is not replaced by cu-nim rainfall like further east because the continent kicks off less rain-laden cu-nims?

  77. Brendan H: We will continue to disagree. There are differences between what Borenstein reported and what the SST record shows. He elected not to qualify his statement, as NOAA did. He also elected not to distinguish between temperature and temperature anomaly. What he wrote was in error no matter how you attempt to justify it.

  78. As usual, the rational thinkers have let the alarmists steer the debate. My recurring criticism to this forum.

    Borenstein’s inane articles aren’t even worth this much discussion. I lived in Florida from 2004-2006. In the summer of 2005 there was a shift in the Atlantic currents that led to the waters on the Atlantic coast of Florida never reaching 70F all summer. This is some 10F below normal. It was reported as one of those “FYI” stories they cram in at the end of the news, but there was no kneejerk reaction that the world had suddenly slipped in to global cooling. So a .6C increase is kind of a joke, and how big of a joke is directly proportional to how aware you are of how things ACTUALLY work. Knowing that Atlantic waters are prone to such shifts, Seth’s story does nothing but prove to me that he is the clueless idiot I already believed him to be. On the flip side, making a capitol case out of it and presenting a 15 slide presentation on why he is wrong gives him WAAAAAYYYY to much legitimacy. He is making statements with no point of reference. While they may seem profound in his pea brain, how startlingly UNPROFOUND they are to anyone who knows better is all the proof you need that he doesn’t even know what he is actually reporting. So the only danger in his reporting it is that equally dumb people will believe it. But hey, buffalo will follow each other over a cliff too. But there’s no sense wasting time, bandwidth and reasoned thinking trying to prevent it….

  79. Bob Tisdale,

    In light of my post above please observe the following:

    Brendan, since you love to talk about it so much, please explain to us WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE of the warmer ocean temperatures, HOWEVER YOU CHOOSE TO INTERPRET THEM, on climate or any science for that matter, based on your work?

    (Please provide all references, equations, and PLEASE use proper scientific notation for any forward predictions. Please also provide proof that it is YOUR work.)

    That’s how you handle it Bob. You don’t waste your own ink. Wanna bet it’s about to get real quiet around here?

  80. Bob Tisdale: “There are differences between what Borenstein reported and what the SST record shows. He elected not to qualify his statement, as NOAA did.”

    Once again, compare texts.

    NOAA: “The global ocean surface temperature for July 2009 was the warmest on record, 0.59°C (1.06°F) above the 20th century average of 16.4°C (61.5°F). This broke the previous July record set in 1998.”

    Borenestein: “The world’s oceans this summer are the warmest on record.
    The National Climatic Data Center, the government agency that keeps weather records, says the average global ocean temperature in July was 62.6 degrees. That’s the hottest since record-keeping began in 1880. The previous record was set in 1998.”

    I don’t see any “significant differences”.

    “He also elected not to distinguish between temperature and temperature anomaly.”

    I doubt that citing the anomaly would change the basic message of the NOAA PR.

  81. Derek: “Brendan, since you love to talk about it so much, please explain to us WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE of the warmer ocean temperatures…”

    No need to shout. My main concern was accuracy in reporting. As for the significance of the record warm ocean temperatures, we’ve heard a lot about supposed cooling of the oceans and atmosphere, but these recent measurements suggest otherwise.

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