NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits

By Blake Snow – FOXNews.com

Image: NASA / Goddard Institute for Space Studies – Maps from NASA’s GISS reveal temperatures where no data exist, thanks to mathematical extrapolation of data.

NASA was able to put a man on the moon, but the space agency can’t tell you what the temperature was when it did. By its own admission, NASA’s temperature records are in even worse shape than the besmirched Climate-gate data.

E-mail messages obtained by a Freedom of Information Act request reveal that NASA concluded that its own climate findings were inferior to those maintained by both the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) — the scandalized source of the leaked Climate-gate e-mails — and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center.

The e-mails from 2007 reveal that when a USA Today reporter asked if NASA’s data “was more accurate” than other climate-change data sets, NASA’s Dr. Reto A. Ruedy replied with an unequivocal no. He said “the National Climatic Data Center’s procedure of only using the best stations is more accurate,” admitting that some of his own procedures led to less accurate readings.

“My recommendation to you is to continue using NCDC’s data for the U.S. means and [East Anglia] data for the global means,” Ruedy told the reporter.

“NASA’s temperature data is worse than the Climate-gate temperature data. According to NASA,” wrote Christopher Horner, a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute who uncovered the e-mails. Horner is skeptical of NCDC’s data as well, stating plainly: “Three out of the four temperature data sets stink.”

Global warming critics call this a crucial blow to advocates’ arguments that minor flaws in the “Climate-gate” data are unimportant, since all the major data sets arrive at the same conclusion — that the Earth is getting warmer. But there’s a good reason for that, the skeptics say: They all use the same data.

Neither NASA nor NOAA responded to requests for comment. But Dr. Jeff Masters, director of meteorology at Weather Underground, still believes the validity of data from NASA, NOAA and East Anglia would be in jeopardy only if the comparative analysis didn’t match. “I see no reason to question the integrity of the raw data,” he says. “Since the three organizations are all using mostly the same raw data, collected by the official weather agency of each individual country, the only issue here is whether the corrections done to the raw data were done correctly by CRU.”

Corrections are needed, Masters says, “since there are only a few thousand surface temperature recording sites with records going back 100+ years.” As such, climate agencies estimate temperatures in various ways for areas where there aren’t any thermometers, to account for the overall incomplete global picture.

“It would be nice if we had more global stations to enable the groups to do independent estimates using completely different raw data, but we don’t have that luxury,” Masters adds. “All three groups came up with very similar global temperature trends using mostly the same raw data but independent corrections. This should give us confidence that the three groups are probably doing reasonable corrections, given that the three final data sets match pretty well.”

But NASA is somewhat less confident, having quietly decided to tweak its corrections to the climate data earlier this month.

In an updated analysis of the surface temperature data released on March 19, NASA adjusted the raw temperature station data to account for inaccurate readings caused by heat-absorbing paved surfaces and buildings in a slightly different way. NASA determines which stations are urban with nighttime satellite photos, looking for stations near light sources as seen from space.

Of course, this doesn’t solve problems with NASA’s data, as the newest paper admits: “Much higher resolution would be needed to check for local problems with the placement of thermometers relative to possible building obstructions,” a problem repeatedly underscored by meteorologist Anthony Watts on his SurfaceStations.org Web site. Last month, Watts told FoxNews.com that “90 percent of them don’t meet [the government's] old, simple rule called the ‘100-foot rule’ for keeping thermometers 100 feet or more from biasing influence. Ninety percent of them failed that, and we’ve got documentation.”

Read the entire story at Fox News.com

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199 thoughts on “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits

  1. “Three out of the four temperature data sets stink.”

    So now we need to measure smell also.

  2. ‘…This should give us confidence that the three groups are probably doing reasonable corrections, given that the three final data sets match pretty well.”

    Or the corrections are roughly equal and equally unreasonable.

  3. I’m only commenting to encourage people here to open a Twitter account (I have no interest) and to click on “Follow WUWT on Twitter”

    I usually arrive here before a single comment has been posted, after receiving a Tweet on Tweetdeck.

    Twitter is the best way of receiving and following original content that I’ve ever encountered.

  4. <em.Global warming critics call this a crucial blow to advocates’ arguments that minor flaws in the “Climate-gate” data are unimportant, since all the major data sets arrive at the same conclusion — that the Earth is getting warmer. But there’s a good reason for that, the skeptics say: They all use the same data.

    I guess the skeptics haven’t heard of the lower tropospheric satellite data.

    But NASA is somewhat less confident, having quietly decided to tweak its corrections to the climate data earlier this month.

    Yeah, they “quietly decided” by announcing the changes on their web site last January

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/updates/

  5. Off topic. What is going on with Arctic ice extent?

    It is defying the Statute of AGW.

    Won’t last. Won’t be reported. And won’t be there when the numbers are corrected?

    It’s all rotten anyway.

  6. All the sets, AFAIK, use the same set of (unpublished?) “internationally accepted rules for adjustments” according to the New Zealand government folks that responded to the assertion a few months back that all the global warming in New Zealand was due to adjustments. If you use the same recipe, you should be expected to make the same soup.

    Of course, Dr. Spencer’s work with the raw surface data (using 4 temps averaged instead of max/min which can suffer from time of observation bias, and/or corrections from it) showed a 20% lower trend… and that’s with no UHI corection.

    [ OT but mods, I know Anthony is busy with his paper, but if anyone would be interested in reviewing a write-up I have been working on regarding UHI please e-mail me, an extra set of eyes on it would be greatly appreciated ]

  7. This is really bad news. Now we will never be able the prove that the planet has gotten warmer in the last 20 years from dumping CO2 in the atmosphere because the temperature data has so many flaws that cannot be resolved without going back original sources and evaluating them. Have they secretly been reading wuwt?

  8. i simply can’t help but notice that the industrialized world is completely covered by a low temperature indicator in this picture.

    conclusion: 3rd world countries cause warming. so do polar bears and penquins…. deserts, rainforests and mountains.

    only in the industrialized world do these horrid climate influences get ground down under pavement and the sanctity of cool weather protected.

    Now. in all seriousness, i must comment that this is a telling admission from nasa. if i thought it was going to end up in the mainstream media i might even believe that it could make a difference in the way some people think.

    i also must comment that i have seen little information about recreating earth conditions in a lab and tweaking the atmospheric mix. seems to me that might be a good starting point in developing theories about the effect of co2 on temperatures.

  9. I don’t have a mynah on my birdfeeder. It’s a good thing because the mynah, a great mimic, would be laughing its poor self to death at the warmists defending the empirical temperature gathering network.

  10. We have satellite data. I know Pielke talks about this subject but how well does global mean temperature compare between satellite and station data? How about radiosondes?

    We know all measurements have some associated error but if we see generally agreement across different techniques that should give us some confidence. I guess one can always argue that brightness temperature algorithms were tweaked to look like station data but you cannot really tweak radiosondes. Please correct me if I’m wrong.

  11. “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits”

    Is that what NASA said?

    Well no, but it’s a catchy headline.

    FoxNews is shameless.

  12. NASA has turned into a reflection of college campuses all across the world. Bizarre left wingers pretending to do real work while sucking on the tax payers teats. Fake science, fake brains. Can you imagine the stupidity in not knowing whether a navigational system rocketed to Mars is in Metric vs English? After 2 years of work? Or a lens that cost over a hundred million dollars to grind?
    These people are political dolts that should be sent to a hardware store to finish their embarrassing “careers”. We are in the hands of morons that would rather extract money from people because of their “feelings” rather than their ability.

  13. KTWO
    “Off topic. What is going on with Arctic ice extent?”

    Not of topic at all. The Map showing the warming anomaly in the Arctic is obviously correct because warming will increase ice coverage, just as it causes more snow. In fact it’s so warm in Northern Canada that all the ice roads are open.

  14. Oh my gosh this is funny.

    The British MPs took a huge bite out of the Climatologists’ culture of anti-scientific method secrecy and lack of transparency. Now NASA is admitting their reports were substandard. Even Anthony got a good plug for this work, that pried open a can of worms that they just couldn’t avoid.

    What’s next, Alarmists adopting the Scientific Integrity backed by the Skeptics?

  15. Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) :

    Thanks for the explanation of how ice is caused by warmth. I’ll stick my ice tray in the microwave next time I need some fast cubes.

  16. So three wrong answers must be correct because they are all similar answers? This must be the new politicaly correct scienctific methodology, or the post-normal scientific method.

  17. And what, pray tell, is the raw data that is being used?

    Is it the data as recorded and reported by each individual station to each country’s own official weather agency, without having been tweaked? Or is the data that’s being shared been so homogenized, pasteurized, & harmonized that it bears little semblance to the data as originally collected?

    From everything I’ve seen of the quality of stations and the standards as well as the jerry-rigged nature of the assorted networks of stations, NOAA, NCDC, & GISS get a resounding F; perhaps it would be even more appropriate to give them an I, as in Incomplete.

  18. Wren (22:04:34) :
    “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits”
    Is that what NASA said?
    Well no, but it’s a catchy headline.
    FoxNews is shameless

    Tell me, Wren, what is incorrect about the headline? Ruedy admitted that the NCDC and CRU data was better than GISS, which is another way of saying that GISS data is not as good as NCDC or CRU data, or in non-pejorative terms, NCDC and CRU are a bit better, GISS is a little worse.

    Well, at least you can attribute your dizzy perspective on all that spinning you do, which of course, is a kind of spin all on its own.

  19. @Wren (22:04:34) :

    “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits”

    Is that what NASA said?

    Well no, but it’s a catchy headline.

    FoxNews is shameless.

    From the article:

    The e-mails from 2007 reveal that when a USA Today reporter asked if NASA’s data “was more accurate” than other climate-change data sets, NASA’s Dr. Reto A. Ruedy replied with an unequivocal no. He said “the National Climatic Data Center’s procedure of only using the best stations is more accurate,” admitting that some of his own procedures led to less accurate readings.

    “My recommendation to you is to continue using NCDC’s data for the U.S. means and [East Anglia] data for the global means,” Ruedy told the reporter.

    Emphasis mine.

  20. NO DATA means NO DATA. Climatologists are trying to tease out a signal so small that the slightest bias introduced by extrapolation methodology will mimic apparent warming. Artificial data is artifact-laden. Add conscious or unconscious tweaking and cherry picking and the result is drivel instead of science.

    The idea of a global surface temperature is faulty ab origine. Global heat is chaotic, transient, and partitioned between hemispheres and between sky and ocean. The ocean’s heat capacity is about 1200 times that of the atmosphere. Humidity and cloud variations unhinge any rational attempt at heat balance calculations. The four data sets aren’t worth spit. It’s a travesty.

  21. Steve Goddard (22:39:21) :
    Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) :

    Thanks for the explanation of how ice is caused by warmth. I’ll stick my ice tray in the microwave next time I need some fast cubes
    =====

    I don’t know if the mpemba effect will work that way, but it’s worth a try. Just be sure not to use a metal ice tray.

  22. I’m worried about the JAXA graph. If the red line crosses the blue line, then that will mean that the Arctic has the most ice EVER. It will only be a matter of time before New York is once again covered with 1000 feet of ice, and sea level will drop 100m which will cause substantial property value loss to todays beach front property. We will need government mandates for everyone to not only buy SUV’s, but to also keep them running 24 hours per day. Everyone will also need to be mandated to have their own ceaseless backyard tire fires, and we will need to dispatch our military to fly continuously over the arctic to spread soot.

  23. Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) said (with tongue in cheek): “The Map showing the warming anomaly in the Arctic is obviously correct because warming will increase ice coverage, just as it causes more snow. In fact it’s so warm in Northern Canada that all the ice roads are open.”

    Quite right. I am reminded of some “underground” comics from the 1970’s, called “Ice Age funnies”. The first issue was when people really did think another ice age was coming, and dealt with the post-modern (i.e. counter-culture triumphalist) world that would exist after the Big Cold hit. A later issue (there were only 3, I think, issued yearly) was after the paradigm had shifted to global warming, but the author was not deterred, he boldly projected that the open Arctic Ocean would cause huge snowfalls (due to increased evaporation) and thus a new Ice Age. Both at once! The “Climate change” that knows no boundaries.

    Thank God all this lunacy will soon end. Kudos to Anthony for his role in ending all this. And kudos to the Arctic Ice cap for it’s sudden shift back to the 1979-2000 mean, causing all the Warmistas to scurry for cover.

  24. Greg Cavanagh (22:40:11) :
    So three wrong answers must be correct because they are all similar answers? This must be the new politicaly correct scienctific methodology, or the post-normal scientific method.

    They use the same line of logic that dictates that two wrongs may not make a right, but three lefts make a right.

  25. jorgekafkazar

    Over at “The Air Vent” Roman has a fascinating post on data-mining for correlations and “teleconnections” that are quite simply spurious.

    Its well worth a look and should probably be posted-up here.

  26. Leon Brozyna (22:49:04) : And what, pray tell, is the raw data that is being used?

    It isn’t. The “raw” dailies go to the individual country B.O.Met. and they cook up a Monthly MIN, Monthly MAX and a “Mean” (that can be calculated any of several ways and may vary from place to place and time to time). It is these MONTHLY AVERAGE computed things that are sent off to the rest of the world (as the individual BOMs expect to sell the dailies to make money if someone wants them…).

    So all you get in the NCDC, GISS, and CRU sets is a further “processing on” of these already non-raw averages of “stuff”.

    The Monthlies are circulated in a form called a CLIMAT report that NOAA / NCDC sometimes catches, and sometimes doesn’t. These get bundled together from time to time, maybe, and put up on the FTP server as the GHCN “unadjusted” data set. (Except it’s had some “QA” process done on it that tosses some values, and some others have been “corrected”, and sometimes they go back and “fix things up”…)

    The CLIMAT reports can also be seen here:

    http://www.ogimet.com/gclimat.phtml.en

    Just for fun, you can look up Bolivia and Papua New Guinea that have CLIMAT reports but that NCDC does not put in the GHCN because, er, um, they must not have CLIMAT reports or they would be in… except, there they are…

    That is “the closest to raw” I’ve been able to find…

    Is it the data as recorded and reported by each individual station to each country’s own official weather agency, without having been tweaked? Or is the data that’s being shared been so homogenized, pasteurized, & harmonized that it bears little semblance to the data as originally collected?

    Interesting question. New Zealand or Australia (I think it was Australia?) had announced an intent to ‘recompute’ their data or some such due to an improved methodology… not sure how you improve “base” data by recomputing it to be different, but hey, maybe it’s just me… So what you get sort of depends on what each BOM decides they want to do.

    From everything I’ve seen of the quality of stations and the standards as well as the jerry-rigged nature of the assorted networks of stations, NOAA, NCDC, & GISS get a resounding F; perhaps it would be even more appropriate to give them an I, as in Incomplete.

    IMHO, it’s worse that that. For example, in the GHCN data set for France, there are 13 stations used in 1999. ALL but 1 is an Airport. (The one is on the Spanish Mediterranean boarder…). The CLIMAT reports say there were somewhere around 40+ reporting.

    http://www.ogimet.com/cgi-bin/gclimat?lang=en&mode=1&state=France&ind=&ord=REV&verb=no&year=2009&mes=02&months=

    So why only use 1/3 of the data and that strongly biased to Airports and Southern locations? Perhaps because when they were using all of them they had a dropping anomaly trend line:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/03/30/france-hide-the-decline/

    and they needed to splice on a “Pivot” of +1C / DECADE to get back up to the zero line…

    So when you use GHCN (and the CRU Crew said their data were more than 90% identical with GHCN) you are getting a selected subset with locational biases all over it and built in via selection bias.

  27. Robert W: Steady, steady, lad. It will be OK.

    DavidMHoffer 21:51:25 explained it. Man’s evil effect on climate takes place in the most remote regions where, curiously enough, it is hardest for amateurs to measure.

    And it is caused by poor people, polar bears, and penguins. He forgot baby seals. So everyone’s favorite place, NYC, need not worry at all.

    But we should still make everyone healthy, wealthy, and wise as those at the Copenhagen Conference wanted. Then poor will be gone and the polar bears and penguins won’t have enough power to ruin Earth by themselves.

  28. Is the clock ticking on James Hansen’s employment at GISS/NASA?

    NASA command has to be displeased that its reputation has been damaged by GISS temp product mismanagement and by the biased advocacy promoted by GISS climate studies leadership..

    I think it is probable that he will be replaced within this year. I project he will go to some some CAGW supporting NGO as their scientific PR/Lobbyist. He will, perhaps’ be openly funded by Gore?

    His replacement probably will be a more neutral appearing individual from the ‘hard science’ area of NASA.

    Tic Toc Tic Toc …

    John

  29. John Whitman (00:36:39) :
    “NASA command has to be displeased that its reputation has been damaged…”

    Not to worry, NASA is on the Toyota space ray acceleration problem.

  30. Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) :

    KTWO
    “Off topic. What is going on with Arctic ice extent?”

    Not of topic at all. The Map showing the warming anomaly in the Arctic is obviously correct because warming will increase ice coverage, just as it causes more snow. In fact it’s so warm in Northern Canada that all the ice roads are open.

    The anomaly map is for Dec-Jan-Feb. Are you disagreeing with this? I only ask becuase the UAH satellite anomalies for the same 3 months are also well above normal. Perhaps you’re just trying to be misleading.

  31. Greg Cavanagh (22:40:11) :

    So three wrong answers must be correct because they are all similar answers? This must be the new politicaly correct scienctific methodology, or the post-normal scientific method.

    There is a 4th answer which, although it shows slight disagreement with the other 3 in the pre-1990 period, agrees very closely with them over the past 20 years.

  32. Re Hansen’ job on the line

    The really shameful thing is that the Americans have taken so dam long to wake up to the blindingly obvious.

    An avowed activist should not be in charge of both the creation of the base line data and the underlying CC or AGW research that may flow from that.

    When the appalling ethics of that are resolved perhaps people might ask why is Pachauri allowed to be actively invoved on the Chicago Climate Exchange along with Maurice Strong et al

    That is just not good enough ….

  33. The amalgamated data sets like GISS and CRU are not suitable for the job of producing a temperature anomaly of a fraction of a degree.

    A better indication can be made by looking at raw data from a global spread of individual rural thermometers, but the problem here is that some show that temperature is increasing while others show it has gone down.

    This indicates that CO2 is not the main climate driver, because if it was temperatures would be effected everywhere. Natural deterministic chaos is the real cause of climate change, as the Earth’s system adjusts to the constantly varying energy inputs from the exosphere.

  34. This is recycled news from something I read a couple weeks ago, where they published the actual e-mail chain, and I have to say that the e-mails don’t quite say what is being alleged. As I recall, the reporter asked whether NASA’s data was more reliable for determining something specific. The initial answer he got was that he should use NCDC data for what he wanted, because NASA applied adjustments to meet their own purposes and the NCDC data would be better. Hansen jumed in and said something a lot more equivocal. The thrust of the e-mails was not that the quality of NASA’s data was better or worse than that of NCDC, it was simply that the two agencies had different objectives, hence collected the data and/or applied corrections with those differing purposes in mind. In this instance, the NCDC data was more suited to what the reporter wanted.

    Don’t mistake this post as a defense of NASA’s adjustment procedures or data quality. It’s just that this particular e-mail exchange isn’t really the indictment it is made out to be.

  35. @jorgekafkazar (23:14:00) :
    “NO DATA means NO DATA. Climatologists are trying to tease out a signal so small that the slightest bias introduced by extrapolation methodology will mimic apparent warming. Artificial data is artifact-laden. Add conscious or unconscious tweaking and cherry picking and the result is drivel instead of science.”

    Not just climatologists. You have just brilliantly resumed what I see as the greatest pitfall of research in general: bias introduced by extrapolation methodology mimicking a desired outcome. Something to this effect should be inscribed in letters of gold in any laboratory.

  36. ” Steve Goddard (22:39:21) :

    Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) :

    Thanks for the explanation of how ice is caused by warmth. I’ll stick my ice tray in the microwave next time I need some fast cubes.”

    That’s ok , the climate change trends to milder earlier springs means i’ll be shoveling more global warming off the driveway by the weekend (If the UK met office forecast is to be believed…….)

  37. “I see no reason to question the integrity of the raw data,” he says. “Since the three organizations are all using mostly the same raw data”

    Huh!

    (and yes; comparing todays ice area with the graphic at the top of this post does give one pause)

    Seems to me no one knows nufink

  38. Could you provide links to tell us about these ice roads?

    Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) :

    KTWO
    “Off topic. What is going on with Arctic ice extent?”

    Not of topic at all. The Map showing the warming anomaly in the Arctic is obviously correct because warming will increase ice coverage, just as it causes more snow. In fact it’s so warm in Northern Canada that all the ice roads are open.

  39. Taken from the previous thread: Results of the Climate gate Parliamentary Inquiry in the UK. Phil Willis MP, Committee Chair, said: “Climate science is a matter of global importance. On the basis of the science, governments across the world will be spending trillions of pounds on climate change mitigation.” Add to this another statement from NASA scientist Andrew Lacis “Anthropogenic warming of the climate system can be detected in temperature observations taken at the surface, in the troposphere and in the oceans.” And we have the result that governments (tax payers) will be paying for “something” based on “measurements” about as accurate as gauging wind speed by licking your finger and sticking it into the air. I would be more supportive of building a pipeline from the “melting” Arctic to irrigate the Sahara.

  40. ΟΤ
    Moderators,
    Something wrong with the the newest thread “Carbon Emissionaries ”

    It gives an “not found” error, either from the side bar or asking for further input.

    [Reply: Anna, it comes up OK on my computer. ~dbs, mod.]

  41. “I guess the skeptics haven’t heard of the lower tropospheric satellite data.”

    We’ve heard of it, but since they use instruments on weather satellites that were never meant for climate research and are only expected to be acurate to 1Celsius, its hard to see how they can be sure they have detected a 0.15Celsius per decade change in just 30 years of observations.

  42. OT –
    UK hit by snow as official summer time begins!!!

    “Heavy snow and strong winds in parts of the UK have brought travel chaos to roads and cuts to power supplies.” BBC News

    “A blast of wintry weather is expected to hit parts of the UK later this week, dashing hopes for some sunshine as British Summer Time gets under way.” BBC News

    —–

    “Summer’s Here! So Expect More Snow –
    Parts of the UK are bracing themselves for the return of snow this week – just as we begin British Summer Time.” Sky News

    —–

    Apparently snowfalls were a thing of the past 10 years ago according to the Independent

  43. Hansen will not be replaced by the current administration.
    Maybe after 2010 elections when NASA is defunded by the new congress.

  44. Just watch as CT (cryosphere today) holds back on showing ice going through the roof (above anomaly)

    The’ve done this again and again.. alas

  45. I know it may be difficult for one bird here to see the obvious from the conclusive statements reported in the article, but the headline used by Fox is accurate. Perhaps drowning in the incomplete, illogical, arcane, even false news offered by places like CNN and MSNBC has got you confused, exacerbated by the bilge published by Time magazine and the New York Times, now over $1 billion in debt and laying off much of their staff because both their readership and advertising revenues have plunged. (Or is it complete avoidance of an issue by these left-lying oracles that leaves you unaware and unedified?)

    Hyperbole masquerading as news and designed to support a false agenda is simply a hard sell nowadays since people can buy a computer for a few hundred bucks and hook into an unprecedented, vast resource of level-headed thinkers. They are no longer held captive and brainwashed by progressive liars who wasted their tuition at liberal universities.

  46. Ahmed,
    By sat data are you talking IR? I’ve wanted to know if there were sat based FLIR type imaging available too. The sat temp records are both derived through microwave sounder units.

    I’ve been looking for the sat trend vs. surface trend info lately and can’t seem to find an easy reference. I know the surface temp trends are higher, just not sure how much. If I recall from Dr. Spencer’s last post I believe Pat Michaels mentioned in the comments .13C/decade vs. .17C/decade… but Michaels McKitrick 2007 references a .3C/decade trend maybe just for 1980-on. I thought I heard GISS was currently the highest with .22C/decade. If anyone has a reliable reference for this stuff it would be appreciated.

    The sat data has been QC’d with weather balloon data, no surface temps although severe differences between the two appear to have led to corrections in the sat data before but never, AFAIK, the other way around.

    On occasion some here imply that the sat records are cooked – I strongly do not agree unless someone knows something they’re not telling anyone about. Dr.s Christy and Spencer are of the utmost integrity IMO, if they say its reliable I do to unless proven otherwise.

  47. Robert Wykoff (23:39:47) :

    We don’t have enough irresistable force to spin the climate warmer. We can ony make the weather more extreme by messing with it.
    It’s like handing a Swiss Watch to your kids to fix.

  48. Ron Broberg (21:34:11) :

    <em.Global warming critics call this a crucial blow to advocates’ arguments that minor flaws in the “Climate-gate” data are unimportant, since all the major data sets arrive at the same conclusion — that the Earth is getting warmer. But there’s a good reason for that, the skeptics say: They all use the same data.

    I guess the skeptics haven’t heard of the lower tropospheric satellite data.

    —————

    No, I'm sure they haven't since the lower tropospheric satellite data is developed by a leading skeptic. Of course lower tropospheric satellite data has only been available since 1978 and tells us nothing about temperatures earlier than that or the causes of any temperature changes in the period 1978- present. There is also a 'divergence' between that satellite data and the GISS/CRU et al adjusted data. Dr Hansen doesn't use the satellite data in the GISS temp calcs because, if he did, he'd be guilty of splicing different measurement sets together. The same thing that was done when the thermometer records were 'spliced' onto the dendro records without explicitly saying so (the 'trick' in the emails – he was 'hiding the decline' in the dendro records to solve the 'divergence' problem, not an actual decline in temperature). Of course the 'trick' was actually allowing them to avoid dealing with the problem that the divergence called into question the entire past dendro calculations, not just the 1980 – present record.

    What these revelations are telling us is not that there is no 'global warming', they are telling us we cannot have much confidence in the accuracy of past temperatures and, given that, we really can't say with any confidence whether there has been global warming, global cooling, or global stasis over even the past century. From there it follows we can't say with any confidence what the increase in human sourced CO2 is or is not doing to planetary temperatures (or local temperatures either). If that is true then we don't have any idea what current and/or future efforts to 'control' CO2 levels will do, we can't say with any confidence if it will 'help' or 'hurt' the climate.

    It would be interesting if someone could do some work to compare the adjustment methods used by the different groups. It would be only nobody seems to know how those adjustments are being/ have been made in most cases. Given that the adjustments are all made from the same raw data, I would be surprised if they didn't come out in 'rough' agreement since I don't think the adjustments are of great significance to the overall temperature.

  49. So there really was no need to create a new surface station network?

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/crn/programoverview.html

    Why We Need A USCRN

    One of the principal conclusions of the 1997 Conference on the World Climate Research Programme was that the global capacity to observe the Earth’s climate system is inadequate and deteriorating worldwide and “without action to reverse this decline and develop the GCOS, the ability to characterize climate change and variations over the next 25 years will be even less than during the past quarter century” ( National Research Council [NRC] 1999). In spite of the United States being a leader in climate research, we do not have, in fact, an observing network capable of ensuring long-term climate records free of time-dependent biases. Even small biases can alter the interpretation of decadal climate variability and change.

  50. I don’t care how much they re-re-revise their data. I ain’t redoin’ my blink charts.

  51. DavidMHoffer’s kid,
    Regarding the lab work I used to think the same thing but how do you recreate a 60 mile column of gas in a lab?

    The way I see it is that climate is, essentially, no different than economics. We can define very concrete rules on the micro level, but many times they are just noise in the grand scheme of things. We don’t really know how things behave in the wild until we take our lab results and then verify them from real world data.

    This is a strong undercurrent in the VS thread. As an Econometrician it’s his job to confirm or deny theories using real world data. I’m not an Econometrician, but I am by training an Economist – and I can assure you we have a very long history of good sounding theories being disproven.

    It’s unfortunate that climate science has not learned this lesson. Everything I have read seems to indicate an answer (CO2) in search of a problem. Throw in a little observational and confirmation bias and the debate is over :)

    Real science will catch up with them eventually, and we’ll all see how myopic they’ve been.

  52. ” John Finn (00:56:32) :

    Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) :

    KTWO
    “Off topic. What is going on with Arctic ice extent?”

    Not of topic at all. The Map showing the warming anomaly in the Arctic is obviously correct because warming will increase ice coverage, just as it causes more snow. In fact it’s so warm in Northern Canada that all the ice roads are open.

    The anomaly map is for Dec-Jan-Feb. Are you disagreeing with this? I only ask becuase the UAH satellite anomalies for the same 3 months are also well above normal. Perhaps you’re just trying to be misleading.”

    It is well below freezing even with a warm Dec-Jan-Feb time frame.Thus it can favor ice growth because of increased cloud cover or more snow.

    It is the winds and warm temperature WATER that are more important at this time of the year.Air temperature is well below freezing at this time of the year,thus not a factor.

  53. anna v (03:37:17) :

    ΟΤ
    Moderators,
    Something wrong with the the newest thread “Carbon Emissionaries ”

    It gives an “not found” error, either from the side bar or asking for further input.

    [Reply: Anna, it comes up OK on my computer. ~dbs, mod.]
    ————————-

    I’m getting the same error as Anna, 8:12AM EDT, 31 Mar

    [Reply: The article comes up on my computer, but comments are disabled. I'm working with WordPress on the problem right now. ~dbs, mod.]

  54. John Whitman (00:36:39) :

    Is the clock ticking on James Hansen’s employment at GISS/NASA?

    No. The last President who told James Hansen to shut up and do his job had to back down because Hansen went public and said “President Bush is trying to silence me on global warming.” It was a lie. President Bush told him to stop making global warming speeches and do his job. But the lie worked, and President Bush never pushed the issue. If Hansen can survive lying about a President, he surely can survive a President who supports his ideas.

  55. Isn’t it amazing how so much research money has been wasted on these clowns at NASA and other so called scientific organizations? If we add up all the money we could for example have landed a man on Mars by now, or solved at least one of the world’s large problems such as starving millions. But alas that would not keep a lot of the politically minded leaders at those institutions in their jobs. So the big con continues.

  56. GISS-Gate? Guess not. They weren’t trying to hide it.

    And anna v. is right (again..) it – Carbon Emissionaries – comes back with: “Not Found
    Sorry, but you are looking for something that isn’t here.”
    @ URL-

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/?p=17961#more-17961

    [Reply: it's a WordPress problem. The article comes up fine here, but comments are closed. We'll get it fixed, have patience. ~dbs, mod.]

  57. dbs,
    Not sure if it helps or not, but I can’t bring the article up from my mobile. Could be that whatever is bodging the comments is also causing touble with the mobile version of the site. It could be that the other folks seeing the “page not found” error are working off a mobile too.

    Just thought I’d add in that clue on the off chance it might be useful.

    Best Regards

    [Reply: Thanks, I will pass it on. ~dbs.]

  58. What we need is a procedure similiar to when there is an election.
    The losers claim that ballot boxes were stuffed etc., etc., the leaders say no we didn’t.
    Yes you did! No we didn’t! Then there is an audited re-count.
    Enough.
    We need a audited recount of all the temperature data.
    START OVER! From square one.
    Shelve ALL the previous data and do a supervised audited data compilation,
    taking into account all the flaws exposed by the sceptics.
    This is the ony way to get the Alarmists to STFU.

  59. pat: “NASA has turned into a reflection of college campuses all across the world. Bizarre left wingers pretending to do real work while sucking on the tax payers teats. Fake science, fake brains.”

    You forgot to mention academics in their ivory towers pontificating about things they have no practical experience of. Like researchers who haven’t a clue about practical temperature measurement and the real bias of human gathered data.

    I think that is why so many US forecasters are so sceptical. Its nothing to do with the science, its the day to day exposure with the real problems of using met station data and the real disasters that befall those who try to make long-term forecasts.

    Forecasting 100years is easy … you aren’t going to be around to be proved wrong. But forecasting sunshine tomorrow and it snows, and you sure know that forecasts are often wrong!

  60. As I sit in front of a frozen keyboard in darkest Scotland with several inches of global warming lying outside.

    “I see no reason to question the integrity of the raw data,” he says. “Since the three organizations are all using mostly the same raw data”

    This makes no sense at all, the WMO provides the same data to all 3 and they all come up with the same answer does not validate the data at all, it just says the adjustments they undertake are similar.

    It does not answer the following,

    Is the data correct.

    What are the adjustments and the reasons for the adjustments.

    Is there collusion between the 3 datasets on what and how these adjustments are made

    Why are adjustments being made retropectively eg 1934 NA wasn’t the hottest year, then is wasn’t and now it is again.

    An on and on.

  61. Greg Cavanagh (22:40:11) :

    So three wrong answers must be correct because they are all similar answers? This must be the new politically correct scientific methodology, or the post-normal scientific method.

    Here’s an amusing “take” on the situation:

    geo (00:08:53) :

    The smartest kid in the class (CRU) just got caught cheating. Why are his frat brothers (GISS, NOAA) claiming that everything is ok because they all put down the same answers on the test?

  62. Do i understand this correctly that James Hansen’s gridded worldwide temperature dataset – GISTEMP, right? – is now no more used and HadCRUT3 is used instead (except for NA, i consider that a fig leaf)?

    HadCRUT3 in turn comes from Phil Jones – who admitted that he’s not very good in record keeping and doesn’t have all the raw data anymore – but still seems to produce a “better” gridded temperature dataset than Hansen.

    And after NASA has created a homunculus from GISTEMP and HadCRUT3 they probably use it to compare it to what GCM’s do.

    If i made any mistake in my reasoning let me know, but to me this looks like GISTEMP has no more relevance or credibility left (maybe except for making alarmist headlines like “Hottest Decade ever”). Am i right in this conclusion?

  63. Experiment:

    Plant 100 seed plots fairly well distributed and started at the same time. Subject to various weather conditions. Assign people walking by to take daily data, accounting for various times when lunch and naps got in the way of taking the noon measures, etc. 2/3 rds of the way into the experiment, remove most of the plots, especially from areas exposed to weather and away from research buildings and warm air vents. Leave the rest non-randomly scattered and add a few more for good measure next to the main parking lot next to the research facility. Continue to take data. Report results as if all plots still remained. Package seed and sell to farmers as a new and improved robust seed guaranteed to grow in all weather conditions. Prepare for tar and feathers.

  64. blackswhitewash.com (02:07:53) :

    And meanwhile the 30% sea ice keep rising like a phoenix …

    … or a hockeystick.

  65. is anyone able to overlay these GISS/NASA map protections onto a 3D sphere? this would go a long way in correcting the polar distortions of the Mercator map projection they use that can only confuse those who will think that the poles take up half the planet

  66. Ron Broberg (21:34:11) :

    “em.Global warming critics call this a crucial blow to advocates’ arguments that minor flaws in the “Climate-gate” data are unimportant, since all the major data sets arrive at the same conclusion — that the Earth is getting warmer. But there’s a good reason for that, the skeptics say: They all use the same data.

    I guess the skeptics haven’t heard of the lower tropospheric satellite data.”

    The debate is not, and never has been about whether or not the planet is getting warmer. It has always been about the warming influence of increasing atmospheric CO2 and whether or not it presents a crisis.

    Nearly everyone agrees that the lower atmosphere is a little warmer now than it was 200 years ago, and anyone with any sense agrees that it is generally a good thing.

    ‘Global warming skeptic’ is a misnomer. A more accurate title would be ‘Anthropogenic global warming crisis skeptic’, but that is such a mouthful that hardly anyone uses it. Another name I like for us skeptics is ‘Climate Realists’, because we acknowledge the mounds of evidence that indicate global climate is always warming or cooling, that we don’t know all the reasons why this happens, and can not accurately model it, and we look at all the evidence and consider all the explanations.

    In contrast, the AGW fear mongers have tried to erase our variable past climate, believe we know how to model climate with extreme accuracy, ignore the data they don’t like and augment the data they do to make it more alarming, steadfastly refuse to acknowledge the possibility that there could be any other explanation than their pet theory for warming, even when the evidence supports other explanations very well and there theory hardly at all.

  67. I’m with Anna V I can’t get the latest post

    [Reply: Working with WordPress to resolve the problem. The article comes up here, but comments are disabled. ~dbs]

  68. Layne Blanchard (06:25:11) :

    FYI -Can’t open the carbon trading article…

    Same here, need to know how to pay for 24hr running of central heating due to unprecedented levels of snow on first day of summer.

  69. GISS records and data are sloppy? Hansen is very busy evangelizing for the carbon movement. He is trying to get fired because he is not staying on task.

    We need Hansen and his terror sermons to prop up Carbon trading prices. The carbon trading thread is not working.

  70. The ‘integrity’ of the data is based on the “INTEGRITY” of the organizations and people who work it and prepare/publish reports for the public and other Scientists ($cienti$t$ couldn’t care less about ‘integrity’ in anything).

    NASA, GISS, NOAA, NCDC, UEA, CRU, (not to mention the Ol’ MET Office) have all suffered fatal blows to their INTEGRITY and the ‘integrity’ of their data and reports. No argument, no assertion, no rebuttal, no nothing, is going to put Humpty Dumpty together again.

    It’s time to break down everthing, wash and disinfect the whole works, hire new fresh untainted people, create a new organization, under someone of impecable integrity and without a political or social agenda. The old “data” may still be good; let them check it. Maybe, just maybe, they’ll earn the public’s trust.

    Have to start over when ‘INTEGRITY’ is compromised!

  71. D. King (00:53:50) :

    “Not to worry, NASA is on the Toyota space ray acceleration problem.”

    I read that too!

    Of course it would be more appropriate to say that

    “NASA is looking at the problem the PRIUS has with Cosmic Rays..”

    ….what ???

    Svensmark’s cosmic rays destroying the Green wonder-car of the elite????

    So it wasnt AGW ? Hmmmm…

  72. Tenuc (01:19:06) : The amalgamated data sets like GISS and CRU are not suitable for the job of producing a temperature anomaly of a fraction of a degree. {…} This indicates that CO2 is not the main climate driver, because if it was temperatures would be effected everywhere.

    Exactly! While the satellite temps move the same way the surface stations seem to, they don’t measure the same thing, it can never be an apples to apples match. Further, with the surface stations in the condition they are in, there is no way we know the temperature to within 2-4°C, let alone a fraction of a degree. Looking at what is done with the raw data, it is easy to see how the globe is actually cooling while AGW grasshoppers play the same song of eternal warming.
    (grasshopper is an allusion to the ant/grasshopper fable)

  73. I’m not on a mobile, and the other article, Carbon emissionaries, is linked to “?p=17961″.

  74. For those of you that want to start making ice cubes with your microwave at home, PLEASE DON’T!! You’re not qualified! Instead, have a certified, peer reviewed NASA or CRU scientist come over and execute the procedure for you. If I may, I do not recommend pouring your favorite scotch or shaking a martini with these “ice cubes” after they are presented to you. These “ice cubes” are best used for cooling down your tea or coffee.

  75. Wondering Aloud (06:34:25) :
    I’m with Anna V I can’t get the latest post
    [Reply: Working with WordPress to resolve the problem. The article comes up here, but comments are disabled. ~dbs]

    There’s an actual article there? I thought the 404 “Sorry, you’re looking for something that doesn’t exist” was a not-so-subtle snark at the MSM

  76. Mike Haseler (05:57:33) :
    pat: “NASA has turned into a reflection of college campuses all across the world. Bizarre left wingers pretending to do real work while sucking on the tax payers teats. Fake science, fake brains.”
    You forgot to mention academics in their ivory towers pontificating about things they have no practical experience of. Like researchers who haven’t a clue about practical temperature measurement and the real bias of human gathered data.

    A blogbuddy said this a few days back: “ ‘Academic freedom’ is a myth of epic proportions carefully promulgated as fact by Academicians. This allows them easier access to the wallets of people who want to believe that university campuses will tolerate free thinking, free speech, and open dialogue.”

    Kinda fits the Climatological Community, too…

  77. Tenuc (01:19:06) : The amalgamated data sets like GISS and CRU are not suitable for the job of producing a temperature anomaly of a fraction of a degree. {…} This indicates that CO2 is not the main climate driver, because if it was temperatures would be effected everywhere.

    ==================

    That may not be entirely accurate. Since the effects of CO2 are limited in areas in which the atmosphere is already saturated with water vapor (or vapour if you prefer) you may not see an effect from increased CO2 in those areas (tropics) as much as you would in areas where there is not as much water vapor (poles/deserts). The fact that, since CO2 is considered a ‘well mixed’ gas atmospherically, the temps in Antarctica are not showing any significant increase is one reason that I tend to think CO2 is not the driver.

  78. The data can really be worse. Remember the Hubble Space telescope mirror error which made its images blurry? What a fiasco!!

    From NASA:
    “Outside the program and NASA, the news was received with less grace, and more outrage and even ridicule. Congressional representatives were furious, influential Senator and space enthusiast Barbara Mikulski, calling the Telescope a “technoturkey,” expressed outrage over Hubble’s “cataract.” Comedians and editorial cartoonists, from Herblock to Gary Larson’s Far Side, could hardly believe their good fortune. Even filmmakers were quick to seize on the opportunity, and before the year was out: “An opening scene in the comedy film Naked Gun 2 1/2 features a dark lounge with a depressing atmosphere, downbeat music, and walls lined with pictures showing historically horrible disasters. There, between a picture of the Hindenburg and a half-sunk Titanic, is the Hubble Space Telescope.””

    And on the subject of climate remember the farce of the Mars Climate Orbiter which crash landed or got burnt up on Mars instead of orbiting all because of a simple mathematical error – A mix-up over converting acceleration figures from English to metric measurements meant the craft probably got too close to Mars. See more disasters from NASA.

    So, I really can beleive the words: “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits”

  79. Would NASA allow in the kind of data issues we have had from GISS, CRU and rely on this kind of data to put men and women in space suits and send them to the Moon? Would you fly in a plane which had the GISS / CRU fudging and extrapolation of data? Of course not but then this isn’t science its advocacy.

  80. Robert E. Phelan (22:53:25) :
    Wren (22:04:34) :
    “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits”
    Is that what NASA said?
    Well no, but it’s a catchy headline.
    FoxNews is shameless

    Tell me, Wren, what is incorrect about the headline? Ruedy admitted that the NCDC and CRU data was better than GISS, which is another way of saying that GISS data is not as good as NCDC or CRU data, or in non-pejorative terms, NCDC and CRU are a bit better, GISS is a little worse.

    Well, at least you can attribute your dizzy perspective on all that spinning you do, which of course, is a kind of spin all on its own.
    ====
    What’s inaccurate about the headline is Ruedy did not say “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data.”

    Suppose I score 99 on a 100 question test and you score 98. If FoxNews didn’t like us, it might report you did worse than me without reference to our scores.

  81. Article Alert:

    Lovelock: ‘We can’t save the planet’

    Professor James Lovelock, the scientist who developed Gaia theory, has said it is too late to try and save the planet.

    The man who achieved global fame for his theory that the whole earth is a single organism now believes that we can only hope that the earth will take care of itself in the face of completely unpredictable climate change.
    (…)
    What is more, he predicts, the earth’s climate will not conveniently comply with the models of modern climate scientists.

    As the record winter cold testifies, he says, global temperatures move in “jerks and jumps”, and we cannot confidently predict what the future holds.
    (…)

    Note: I said “article alert” as I’ll leave it up the the reader as to whether it is “news.”

    FWIW, a BBC piece where someone like Lovelock essentially says “We are not in control, we cannot have control, we should give up trying and just ride it out” is something I greet as “cheering news.”

  82. Giss..oos! what a bunch of liers you were pals! , but tell me, how do you make it to keep your jobs?

  83. Tenuc (01:19:06) :
    The amalgamated data sets like GISS and CRU are not suitable for the job of producing a temperature anomaly of a fraction of a degree.

    A better indication can be made by looking at raw data from a global spread of individual rural thermometers, but the problem here is that some show that temperature is increasing while others show it has gone down.

    This indicates that CO2 is not the main climate driver, because if it was temperatures would be effected everywhere. Natural deterministic chaos is the real cause of climate change, as the Earth’s system adjusts to the constantly varying energy inputs from the exosphere.
    =======
    What the heck is “natural deterministic chaos”? Is it just a fancy term for “magic” ?

  84. “Wren (08:28:31) :
    [...]
    What the heck is “natural deterministic chaos”? Is it just a fancy term for “magic” ?”

    Chaos theory is a field of study in mathematics, physics, and philosophy studying the behavior of dynamical systems that are highly sensitive to initial conditions. This sensitivity is popularly referred to as the butterfly effect. Small differences in initial conditions (such as those due to rounding errors in numerical computation) yield widely diverging outcomes for chaotic systems, rendering long-term prediction impossible in general.[1] This happens even though these systems are deterministic, meaning that their future behaviour is fully determined by their initial conditions, with no random elements involved.[2] In other words, the deterministic nature of these systems does not make them predictable.[3] This behavior is known as deterministic chaos, or simply chaos.

    from

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

  85. “Wren (08:16:04) :
    [...]
    Suppose I score 99 on a 100 question test and you score 98. If FoxNews didn’t like us, it might report you did worse than me without reference to our scores.”

    Ask yourself this: Would NASA really ditch their own product for such a small difference?

  86. Wren (08:28:31)
    What the heck is “natural deterministic chaos”? Is it just a fancy term for “magic” ?
    It is the elegant way of saying “I know the f* of nothing about it!”
    To know something, as things go now, they gotto be electrical engineers.

  87. This is important. When one examines the claims of the AGW industry, all they really have are their historical temperature estimates and their modeled future climate results.

    Given the work of Willis Eschenbach and others regarding how historical raw temperature data is bent and warped – not once, but seemingly every few years – so that raw data that shows temperature trends level or declining for a reporting site is transformed into ever more “threatening” rising temperature trends, then this is the battlefront to end the AGW scam. Show the purported “unprecendented temperature increases” of the last 40 years to be fallacious, and all that’s left to them is the futuristic arm-waving.

    All these AGW supporters should be forced to show exactly how they get to their “final” temperature estimates (if they can even find the data), then those approaches being use can be torn apart. And torn apart they will be. There is no way that Darwin, or New Zealand, or however many different results of these manipulations, are even remotely connected to reality. Frankly, right now, I doubt one can say with confidence that the earth is warming at all.

    And finally, the map at the head of this article should be banned. For them to be smearing the results of one station over tens of thousands of square kilometers lacking data based on some arbitrary grid is a travesty.

  88. “NASA Data Worse Than Climate-Gate Data, GISS Admits”

    Let’s hope so because Climategate is petering out like a denier in a gerbil wheel..

    London, England (CNN) — The UK scientist at the center of the “Climategate” controversy over leaked e-mails has been cleared of hiding or manipulating data by a parliamentary committee.
    ……..

    The Commons report said the leaked emails suggested a “blunt refusal” by Jones to share scientific data but its chairman Phil Willis said there was no evidence that Jones hid or manipulated data to back up his own science.

    “The focus on Professor Jones and CRU has been largely misplaced,” the report said. “On the accusations relating to Professor Jones’s refusal to share raw data and computer codes, the committee considers that his actions were in line with common practice in the climate science community but that those practices need to change.”

  89. Ron Broberg (21:34:11) :

    “I guess the skeptics haven’t heard of the lower tropospheric satellite data.”

    You mean the UAH satellite data that shows that the troposphere is warming less than the surface? Or do you mean the RSS satellite data that shows that the troposphere is warming more than the UAH satellite data shows, but still less than the surface? Or do you mean the “stratospheric-cooling-adjusted” (Lu et al, 2004) RSS satellite data that shows that the troposphere is warming more faster than the surface, but still not as much as AGW theory predicts that it should? Or do you mean the “climate-model-adjusted” (Mears et al, 2005) RSS satellite data that, by using circular reasoning, shows that the troposphere is warming at least as fast as AGW theory predicts?

    Yes, we’ve heard of that satellite data. AGW theory says that the troposphere should warm more than the surface (by a factor of about 1.2). Satellite measurements of tropospheric temperature show exactly the opposite, that the troposphere is warming LESS than the surface. Lu says that, once you factor out the “stratospheric cooling” from the RSS data, the tropospheric warming is (in the tropics at least, but not for the planet as a whole) similar to what the theory says. But, presumably, unless the people that came up with AGW theory are completely incompetent (which I’m beginning to think is the case), they would have factored the effect of stratospheric cooling into their prediction of tropospheric warming, and therefore, Lu is wrong to factor it back out. Mears uses 5 years worth of hourly output from a climate model to adjust the RSS tropospheric temperatures. Not only do we know that all of the climate models are WRONG, we know that they all begin with the assumption that CO2 is the driving force behind global temperature change and that all natural forcings are insignificant. Using this climate model therefore equates to an ASSUMPTION that global warming is man-made. And concluding that the tropospheric temperatures, when compared to surface temperatures, are consistent with AGW theory is equivalent to concluding that AGW theory is true (or at least could be true), or in other words, global warming is man-made. Surprise, surprise! If you ASSUME global warming is man-made, it leads to the CONCLUSION that global warming is man-made. Circular reasoning.

    Yeah, Ron, we’ve heard of that satellite data.

    Regards,
    Trevor

  90. DirkH (08:38:59) :
    “Wren (08:28:31) :
    [...]
    What the heck is “natural deterministic chaos”? Is it just a fancy term for “magic” ?”

    Chaos theory is a field of study in mathematics, physics, and philosophy studying the behavior of dynamical systems that are highly sensitive to initial conditions. This sensitivity is popularly referred to as the butterfly effect. Small differences in initial conditions (such as those due to rounding errors in numerical computation) yield widely diverging outcomes for chaotic systems, rendering long-term prediction impossible in general.[1] This happens even though these systems are deterministic, meaning that their future behaviour is fully determined by their initial conditions, with no random elements involved.[2] In other words, the deterministic nature of these systems does not make them predictable.[3] This behavior is known as deterministic chaos, or simply chaos.

    from

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

    ====
    Oh I know what it is, but if globally warming is caused by one butterfly in Brazil flapping its wings, I would say that’s magic.

  91. Wren,
    Not sure if you recall our conversation on Spencer’s thread a couple weeks back, but I think I might have finally answered that question about the concrete patio. I ramped up the scale to 1000 km2 to make the numbers a little more easy to work with, but for the IPCC sensitivy to CO2 vs. my calculated UHI forcing… the UHI impact was 7.5 times the CO2 impact.

    I’m working to get it all written up. It’s an interesting issue!

  92. Wren (08:57:45)
    Oh I know what it is, but if globally warming is caused by one butterfly in Brazil flapping its wings, I would say that’s magic
    What if such butterfly is Ban Ki Moon or “Al Baby”?…big wings indeed!

  93. Trevor (08:53:36) : The maximum possible AIR warming it is 1542.02 times less than surface, considering surface avg.volumetric heat capacity=2.0 joules cm-3 K-1, and if compared with water it is 3227.45 times less.

  94. “” Stephen Skinner (22:21:45) :

    KTWO
    “Off topic. What is going on with Arctic ice extent?”

    Not of topic at all. The Map showing the warming anomaly in the Arctic is obviously correct because warming will increase ice coverage, just as it causes more snow. In fact it’s so warm in Northern Canada that all the ice roads are open.””

    So warming causes a build up of Arctic ice and snow? So can I then infer that cooling causes a LOSS of Arctic ice and snow?

    We’re through the looking glass, now…

  95. Trevor (08:53:36)
    Ron Broberg (21:34:11)

    Don’t forget M&M 2007 where they state that a significant % of the warming in the surface temp is due to corruption of the grid averages due to extrapolation of UHI into areas that are not developed.

    That is the “spurious” warming Spencer is talking about. UHI is, from a surface temperature viewpoint, very local. From a global viewpoint it should look somewhat similar to this: http://www.theglobaleducationproject.org/earth/images/final-images/g-gpw-population-map.gif

    But instead the surface temp reconstructions extrapolate UHI to areas where it shouldn’t be seen.

    Roughly speaking, the correction of this bad homogenization/extrapolation, appears to put the surface records roughly in alignment with the temperature trends from the satellite records.

    …and that has nothing to do with the REAL heating effects from UHI – which my rough estimate puts at .23 W/m2 globally (still working on the write-up but looking for reviewers).

    Long term I’m looking to develop a Unified Theory of UHI, which will speak end to end on the macro effects of UHI and the implications for climate science as it exists today in the IPCC analysis.

  96. “Wren (08:57:45) :
    [...]
    What the heck is “natural deterministic chaos”? Is it just a fancy term for “magic” ?”
    [...]
    Oh I know what it is, but if globally warming is caused by one butterfly in Brazil flapping its wings, I would say that’s magic.”

    First you say you don’t know what deterministic chaos is, then you say you know. You’re taking the contrarian attitude a little too far to be believable.

  97. Oh I know what it is, but if globally warming is caused by one butterfly in Brazil flapping its wings, I would say that’s magic

    Which indicates a lack of appreciation of the distinction between weather and climate. The fact that the weather is chaotic does not imply the climate is. In fact the climate (under the ergodic hypotheses) is insensitive to butterflies.

  98. NASA was able to put a man on the moon, but the space agency can’t tell you what the temperature was when it did.

    Good grief. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, however, since there is a minor archaeological expedition of sorts to find and restore Apollo-era films and data: http://www.moonviews.com

    I guess NASA isn’t the best at archiving data either. ;->

    Paul

  99. Wren (08:57:45)
    “Oh I know what it is, but if globally warming is caused by one butterfly in Brazil flapping its wings, I would say that’s magic”

    I think you may be a little confused. When DirkH wrote “This sensitivity is popularly referred to as the butterfly effect,” this is just a popular name. I think it was originally intended to dramatise the effect that small changes in initial boundary conditions can have on the generation of storms. It should not be taken as literally true, and chaos theory certainly does not postulate that a butterfly can be responsible for global warming. Still, it’s a common mispercetpion.

  100. “Tom W (09:38:46) :
    [...]
    The fact that the weather is chaotic does not imply the climate is. In fact the climate (under the ergodic hypotheses) is insensitive to butterflies.”

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

    “Use caution in assuming ergodic performance when the number of components, N, is large; it is likely that the time to completion will vary as 2^N. For complex biological systems, ergodic performance is seldom possible.

    I might add that the performance of biological systems is relevant to the development of the climate even though current GCM’s don’t incorporate them (maybe in some parameterized form but surely not as a dynamic simulated entity).

    So i think “ergodic” buys you nothing here.

  101. “…The fact that the weather is chaotic does not imply the climate is. In fact the climate (under the ergodic hypotheses) is insensitive to butterflies.”

    Actually, Climate is a construct. Weather is what “is” -there’s no getting around it. Climate, on the other hand, is whatever the statistician, activist, capitalist, or paleo-climatologist wants it to be.

    Climate is a deconstructionist’s dream come true. Fouccault should have chosen climat science instead of philosophy.

  102. “Actually, Climate is a construct. Weather is what “is” -there’s no getting around it. ”

    Yep it’s an average, but so are temperature, pressure and all the rest. In other words so is ‘weather’. The only ‘reality’ is the gazillions of molecules

  103. In other words the claim

    Climate is a deconstructionist’s dream come true. Foucault should have chosen climaet science instead of philosophy.

    is sheer nonsense.

  104. “Use caution in assuming ergodic performance when the number of components, N, is large; it is likely that the time to completion will vary as 2^N. For complex biological systems, ergodic performance is seldom possible.”

    Of course one uses caution…which is why one examines things like stationarity, the autocorrelation function, etc, of atmospheric quantities to determine if it is applicable. Indications are that it is.

    There are gazillions of words devoted to the subject

    http://books.google.ca/books?id=5QgAfL1N6koC&pg=PA251&lpg=PA251&dq=climate+ergodicity+autocorrelation&source=bl&ots=-r7lB72NoZ&sig=0_daC7tHO4sK0N5C9GicoJ–73Y&hl=en&ei=souzS_-lO4L_8AbvqdyGBA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=10&ved=0CEAQ6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q=&f=false

  105. From the link in the article:

    Subject: Re: USA temperatures – question from USA TODAY
    From: “James Hansen” .
    Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2007 16:12:20 -0400
    To: “Rice, Doyle”

    Well, I guess that I would say it a bit differently.

    Our method of analysis has features that are different than the analyses of the other groups. In some cases the differences have a substantial impact.

    For example, we extrapolate station measurements as much as 1200 km. This allows us to include results for the full Arctic. In 2005 this turned out to be important, as the Arctic had a large positive temperature anomaly. We thus found 2005 to be the warmest year in the record, while the British did
    not and initially NOAA also did not. Independent satellite IR measurements showed that our extrapolations of anomalies into the Arctic were conservative. I am very confident that our result was the correct one in that instance.

    That doesn’t sound to me like GISS is admitting its data is worse than HadCRUT data. Just different.

    Until the full Earth Observing System is up and running and giving data from every part of the planet, I see no problem with interpolating known, nearby data in the Arctic. This is better than Hadley’s “we don’t measure it, so let’s just put in the average temperature anomaly for the entire planet” approach. Which is also the approach of UAH and RSS satellite data analysis.

    Should they spend another $1 billion so they don’t have to do this kind of guesstimate ? Absolutely.

    FOX News – We Report, You Decide.
    OK, i’ve decided.

  106. Tom W:

    “But apparently you haven’t heard of Mears and Wentz who in 2005 found an algebraic error in an earlier analysis which led to a substantial increase in tropospheric warming. They also released their own results indicating a trend of 0.19°C per decade, higher than the surface rate of 0.17°C.”

    Yes, I know about that one too. It was the UAH record they found an error in, and though the correction was significant, after the correction, the warming in the troposphere was still less than the warming at the surface. That’s why I didn’t mention it. But hey, if you want to hang your hat on this Mears “correction” to UAH, and admit that the troposphere is warming more slowly than the surface, be my guest.

    As for “their own results”, that’s the one I mentioned (except I believe it was .20 for RSS trop, and 0.16 for surface). And I explained their circular reasoning in that paper. Since you obviously missed that, I’ll explain it again. They “used 5 years of hourly output from a climate model” (a direct quote from Mears et al, 2005) to “adjust” the RSS tropospheric temperature data. They didn’t mention which climate model they used (which is apparently standard practice for climatologists, so no one can duplicate their work), but ALL of the climate models assume that CO2 is the driving force behind climate change. So using this model is equivalent to ASSUMING that global warming is man-made. Then, based on this ASSUMPTION, they estimated a new value for the increase in tropospheric temperatures and concluded that it was consistent with anthropogenic global warming (i.e., about 1.2 times as large as surface warming). What a surprise! They started by ASSUMING that global warming is man-made, and then CONCLUDED that global warming is man-made. That, Tom, is circular reasoning.

    Look. There’s any number of “adjustments” that “scientists” can do to “show” that something is there when it isn’t (just look at the multiple instances in the CRU code released by the Climate-Gate hacker/whistle-blower). I don’t trust “adjustments” and never have. But of all the many adjustments done to the RSS and UAH satellite data, prescious few of them get the tropospheric temperatures up anywhere near where AGW theory says it SHOULD be in comparison to surface temperature. And those that do are shady at best.

    Regards,
    Trevor

  107. NickB. (09:26:51) :

    “Don’t forget M&M 2007 where they state that a significant % of the warming in the surface temp is due to corruption of the grid averages due to extrapolation of UHI into areas that are not developed.”

    I haven’t mentioned it yet, Nick, because I’m having too much fun rubbing the alarmists’ noses in their own surface temperature record, but I think you’re exactly right on this. If the alarmists would just admit that the surface temperature record is positively biased to show about 40% more warming than actually occurred, they wouldn’t have a problem with the tropospheric temperatures vis-a-vis surface temps and AGW theory. If actual temperatures had a warming trend of, say, 0.12 degrees C per decade (rather than the 0.17 that the record shows), then the 0.144 degrees C per decade (average of RSS and UAH) trend in the troposphere would be right on the money with respect to what AGW theory says about tropospheric temperatures in relation to surface temperatures. But if they admit that the surface is only warming 0.12 degrees C per decade, not only is not very scary, it’s not even unusual when compared to temperature changes in the past.

    Regards,
    Trevor

  108. “”” Bill Marsh (04:57:00) :

    Ron Broberg (21:34:11) :

    <em.Global warming critics call this a crucial blow to advocates’ arguments that minor flaws in the “Climate-gate” data are unimportant, since all the major data sets arrive at the same conclusion — that the Earth is getting warmer. But there’s a good reason for that, the skeptics say: They all use the same data.

    I guess the skeptics haven’t heard of the lower tropospheric satellite data.

    —————

    No, I'm sure they haven't since the lower tropospheric satellite data is developed by a leading skeptic. Of course lower tropospheric satellite data has only been available since 1978 and tells us nothing about temperatures earlier than that or the causes of any temperature changes in the period 1978- present. There is also a 'divergence' between that satellite data and the GISS/CRU et al adjusted data. Dr Hansen doesn't use the satellite data in the GISS temp calcs because, if he did, he'd be guilty of splicing different measurement sets together. The same thing that was done when the thermometer records were 'spliced' onto the dendro records without explicitly saying so (the 'trick' in the emails – he was 'hiding the decline' in the dendro records to solve the 'divergence' problem, not an actual decline in temperature). Of course the 'trick' was actually allowing them to avoid dealing with the problem that the divergence called into question the entire past dendro calculations, not just the 1980 – present record. """

    So you mentioned Dr James Hansen; would he be the "a leading skeptic" that you cited as being responsible for the "lower troposphere" satellite data.

    When you write peer reviewed Journal papers do you give a bibliography citing "leading skeptics" or "leading protagonists" or some other euphemism for who exactly you are citing from.

    As to "lower troposphere" data from satellites; so far as I am aware, one of the two "leading report groups" of satellite data say that their observations relate to about 14,000 ft altitiude (UHA); which would likely make those measurements somewhat unrelated to what happens down here on the earth's surface. Most of the Stevenson screen and such like data sources that I believe GISSTemp relies on, are supposed to be at around 60 inches high or so above the hard ground.

    That would seem to be quite unrelated to whatever is going onb at 14,000 feet above MSL, with no apparent conenction to the actual surface altitude.

    And since so far as I know, important environments such as arctic and antarctic sea ice don't seem to appear at 14,000 ft altitude, it would seem that the important climate events that affect human populations; and by inference other flora and fauna; don't really care what the 14,000 ft temperature (anomalies) are.

  109. Let’s hear it for the Arctic ice cap.

    In a year of a severe El Nino (average global temperatures up by around 0.7 degrees C) and near record winter temperatures (according to NASA) in northern Canada and Greenland – the ice cap appears set to increase to its greatest extent in seven years at this time of year.

    The problem could be that tomorrow is April Fools’ Day, so the AGW brigade could refuse to believe it, arguing that is no more than a nasty sceptic trick designed to make them look stupid.

  110. I think you are making too much of the fact that they used a climate model since it was only used to construct a model of the diurnal temperature variations to be used eliminate aliasing…the misinterpretation of daily temperature variations along the satellite track as as a long term tend. Diurnal variations are a ZEROTH order temperature change associated with daily changes of solar insolation (night and day. They are HUGE compared with changes associated with global warming and should be relatively insensitive to precise CO_2 levels. By contrast average changes due global warming are a SECOND ORDER effect due to CHANGES in CO_2 levels,

    “but ALL of the climate models assume that CO2 is the driving force behind climate change.”

    This is false. In fact the models use (an admittedly crude version of) the laws of physics to CALCULATE the effect of CO_2. Over the years the methods have been refined and the results appear to converge – thus giving a level of confidence in the result.

  111. One more thing on the Lu et al (2004) paper.

    Look at the third page (page 57 of the journal). Look closely at Figure 2. Note how closely Lu’s “adjusted” Lower Troposphere (LT) temperature (T850-300) follows the unadjusted LT temp (T2). A few lines below that, Lu, inexplicably, says “It is evident that the T850-300 trend is more positive than the T2 trend.” What?! They’re right on top of each other, for Pete’s sake! Furthermore, it is clear that any trend (even Lu’s inflated trend) is utterly overwhelmed by year-to-year fluctuations. If you take out 1998 (an El Nino year), there wouldn’t be any significant trend at all.

    Now look at Figure 3. Earlier in the paper, Lu admits that only 15% of the T2 signal comes from the stratosphere. Yet, somehow, removing the stratospheric influence NEARLY DOUBLES the global LT temp trend. How in the world does this make sense?

    Finally, here’s the kicker, the thing that exposes this whole paper for the sham that it is. On the same page as Figures 2 and 3, in the next two paragraphs after his inexplicable statement regarding the T850-300 trend, Lu makes the following two statements:

    1. “The trend difference between T850-300 and T2 for the tropics is smaller (~0.05K per decade) because there the tropopause is higher and the stratospheric cooling is smaller, so the stratospheric influence is smaller.”

    2. “GCM studies have predicted a global ratio [of tropospheric to surface temperatures] of ~1.2 (ref. 8) and a tropical ratio of ~1.54

    Now, why would the GCM studies mentioned in statement 2 predict the tropical ratio would be higher than the global ratio? Because the predictions ALREADY TAKE INTO ACCOUNT what Lu mentioned in statement 1, that the tropopause is higher and the stratospheric cooling is smaller in the tropics than elsewhere on the planet. So the predictions already factor in “stratospheric cooling”. It is therefore ENTIRELY INAPPROPRIATE to adjust the LT temps for stratospheric cooling when comparing them to the predictions of the models. Stratospheric cooling is ALREADY INCLUDED in those predictions (which is consistent with even my minimal estimate of the competence of climatologists).

    It’s like I predicted that my net pay (after deductions) is going to be $1000, then when I get my paycheck, I look at the stub and find net pay ($1400), and subtract the deductions ($400), arriving at $1000, exactly what I predicted. But it is wrong to subtract deductions from net pay, because they have ALREADY been subtracted from gross pay to get net pay. My actual net pay is $1400, which my prediction missed, badly.

    There is no need to adjust LT temps for stratospheric cooling when comparing to predictions of LT temp, because stratospheric cooling is already included in the predictions. It MIGHT be reasonable to adjust for “diurnial drift” (I haven’t closely examined this yet, but it seems a little fishy to me). But other than Mears’s circular-reasoning paper, no such adjustment based on diurnial drift comes close to putting LT temps where AGW theory predicts they should be in relation to surface temps.

    Regards,
    Trevor

  112. DirkH (06:17:39) : If i made any mistake in my reasoning let me know, but to me this looks like GISTEMP has no more relevance or credibility left (maybe except for making alarmist headlines like “Hottest Decade ever”). Am i right in this conclusion?

    Yup. You are Absolutely right. (From someone who has GIStemp running in his living room and has read all the code. It’s a bad joke, poorly written, producing fantasy output.)

  113. “Tom W (10:53:59) :
    [...]
    Of course one uses caution…which is why one examines things like stationarity, the autocorrelation function, etc, of atmospheric quantities to determine if it is applicable. Indications are that it is.

    There are gazillions of words devoted to the subject
    [points to Statistical analysis in climate research By Hans von Storch, Francis W. Zwiers]”

    Looks like i gotta read that book to see what you mean. Ok. One remark until i’m done with it: I wonder whether von Storch measured the ergodicity in real climate or in one of his models…

  114. Tom W (10:53:59) :
    “There are gazillions of words devoted to the subject

    http://books.google.ca/books?id=5QgAfL1N6koC&pg=PA251&lpg=PA251&dq=climate+ergodicity+autocorrelation&source=bl&ots=-r7lB72NoZ&sig=0_daC7tHO4sK0N5C9GicoJ–73Y&hl=en&ei=souzS_-lO4L_8AbvqdyGBA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=10&ved=0CEAQ6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q=&f=false

    Ok… von Storch and Zwiers talk about ergodicity on page 203, explaining the concept and culminating in the sentence “However, ergodicity is not generally a problem in climate research”. They don’t say where they got that from but i guess it’s common lore in climate science circles.

    Thanks for pointing me to the book anyway.

  115. Dr. Trenberth – “But warming means increased heat waves
    and drying that increases risk of drought and reduces snowpack and water
    resources, …

    See he predicted the red spots depicting heat at the Arctic circle.

    This prediction also covers the record floods in new England.

    The web is flooded with pictures of a severe deluge hitting parts of New England. The pictures are no good because most were taken by amateurs and not Doctoral degreed climate scientists. I hate flooding but I am not impressed. 4 inches of rain in 24 hours is not a big deal. 13 inches in 24 hours is.

  116. NASA doesnt have a clue on the climate data. They are even worse than GISS, who are pretty appalling.

    Never mind we are supposed to commit trillions of dollars and modify our way of life based on this data.

  117. Tom W (12:18:20)
    Since you seem to understand the models, could you please explain where in those models it accounts for walking on concrete in the summer being hotter than walking on grass? If the grass is the low side of meadow albedo @ 10%, evaporative effect – per Trenberth – is an average of the equivalent to 39% albedo, and the we’re talking new concrete at an albedo of 50%… wouldn’t you expect grass and concrete to be the same temperature in the sun?

    Also, where in the models have they accounted for the 61,000 square miles of pavement we have put down in the US?

  118. I just did an analysis of GHCN v2.mean temperatures using Jeff Id’s script for R. See Thermal Hammer on Jeff’s Website.

    I just did it for all the sites in GHCN’s v2temperatureinv for British Columbia, Canada.

    It appears from what I did, that the temperature data for BC is very poorly kept up to date. Most records begin around 1950 and end at 1990. There are only a few sites (of about 140) that have records to 2010. The seasonal slopes and anomaly calculated by Jeff’s script vary widely. The +/- range can be huge.

    Maybe BC is an outlier, but I doubt it. It seems possible to me that the emphasis on the 1950 to 1990 range, if carried through over the world would make the data pretty dodgy. The only US area I analysed (WMO 72235 versions 1 thr 12) had far more up to date data.

    The program is easy to run especially if you use R commander and the script is at Jeff’s website. It would be interesting to see if other people would find similiar poorly up to date data for their area of the world. Maybe we could get a world wide analysis of the GHCN data!! (another sufacestations type analysis)

  119. Richard (15:30:14) :

    NASA doesnt have a clue on the climate data. They are even worse than GISS, who are pretty appalling.

    You might be interested to learn that GISS is a NASA organization:

    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/

    Never mind we are supposed to commit trillions of dollars and modify our way of life based on this data.
    Really ? We are “supposed” to ? Was there some law passed this weekend ?

    Which trillions of the annual $70.24 trillion world economy is supposed to be committed ? And what do you mean by “modify” my way of life – drive a hybrid? Use compact fluorescent light bulbs? Pay $9/month more for electricity from natural gas and wind rather than coal?

    Oh, the horror…

  120. “Anu (17:40:04) :
    [...]
    Which trillions of the annual $70.24 trillion world economy is supposed to be committed ? And what do you mean by “modify” my way of life – drive a hybrid? Use compact fluorescent light bulbs? Pay $9/month more for electricity from natural gas and wind rather than coal?”

    That’s how it starts, and from there the cost of electricity rises with 6 to 10% a year, that’s our experience here in Germany – as more and more wind turbines and PV panels get erected, each one subsidized, the cost rises.

    At the same time, the CO2 emissions don’t fall because of the rising need for a spinning reserve.

    While you are right in that it does not mean the immediate end of civilization it has to be pointed out that it’s a useless and rising cost – useless for skeptics but just as useless for environmentalists because the emissions don’t fall.

    Everybody pays more money and some people profit from it. That’s the entire effect. That’s where it ends. Money changes its owner.

  121. “DirkH (17:55:47) :
    [...]
    Everybody pays more money and some people profit from it. That’s the entire effect. That’s where it ends. Money changes its owner.”

    And if Bono were smart he’d put his money into a wind turbine maker instead of Palm.

  122. “Since you seem to understand the models, could you please explain where in those models it accounts for walking on concrete in the summer being hotter than walking on grass?”

    While man-made concrete structures do influence local temperatures over a limited vertical distance, they are entirely negligible vis a vis the global temperature because they represent an infinitesimal fraction of the Earth’s surface.

    The temperature over various surface types is the subject of Boundary Layer Meteorology – the study of the interaction between the atmosphere and the earth’s surface. There are books written on this subject. To properly explain the temperature difference over grass and concrete would require a mini course which is more work than I am willing to do. Briefly put however, evaporation and water vapour transfer are much more significant above a grassy surface and can greatly affect the energy balance and resulting air temperature.

    For a more more detailed, related discussion see page 2 of Chapter 10

    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/2004Q2/547/www/lect10.pdf

  123. Tom W (19:17:27)
    I think surface area should be expected to play a (big?) role too, but mostly speaking I think we’re on the same page here with possibly one exception…

    What about the underside of the pavement? Pavement will tend toward a higher equilibrium surface temperature in the sunlight, but it is also thermally coupled with the ground underneath it (one big giant friggin heat sink).

    So, majority speaking, the difference is that one surface emits back heat and humidity, while the other emits back heat only and changes the equilibrium temperature of the soil underneath it.

    Now how can you tell the difference between that and CO2-based AGW, observationally speaking? Measurements would show a build up in net energy in the system for both, and higher temperatures for both… right?

    Now in the United States we have paved the equivalent of Wisconsin (61,000 square miles) and that’s not even counting structures (which would probably bring it to around 100,000 square miles). Are you REALLY saying that a parking lot the size of Wisconsin is infinitesimal?

  124. Also, Tom… I asked about the models. Where in the models have they accounted for any of this?

    Jeeze, and people call us “deniers”

    /rollz eyez

  125. “Also, where in the models have they accounted for the 61,000 square miles of pavement we have put down in the US?”

    That’s about 2% of the area of the US. Let’s be generous and assume that 1% of the entire land surface of the Earth is paved (this probably much too large) then since 30% of the Earth’s surface is land it follows that less than 0.3% of the Earth’s surface is paved (probably much less). In other words the effect of pavement is negligible.

  126. DirkH (17:55:47) :

    That’s how it starts, and from there the cost of electricity rises with 6 to 10% a year, that’s our experience here in Germany – as more and more wind turbines and PV panels get erected, each one subsidized, the cost rises.
    ——-
    Perhaps a country at the same latitude as Labrador, Canada shouldn’t be subsidizing PV power. But I bet you take advantage of windpower at least as well as the Danish. Also, the idea is that as wind turbines get bigger, better engineered, and economies of scale manufacturing tens of thousands of them kick in, subsidies should come down.

    Aren’t the Germans still good engineers and manufacturers? Or did that die out last century…

  127. Oops. I keep forgetting about html and brackets

    “Also, Tom… I asked about the models. Where in the models have they accounted for any of this?”

    They don’t. As I have pointed out in two previous posts the effect is negligible (a fraction of 1%).

    “Jeeze, and people call us “deniers””

    For good reason

  128. Tom,
    Unless you know what the forcing inflicted by the change is you can’t say something is negligible on a % basis, can you? It’s that same rational that leads people (I assume on the other side from you on the argument) to say that 1.6 ppm of CO2 is negligble too.

    All I’m saying is that we all know that the difference is potent – from walking on it in the summer to the way that first snow tends to stick onto grass but not sidewalks or roads (for a while at least, and without the aid of salt) during the winter.

    The reality is that they both probably have some effect but if your goal is to look for anthropogenic fingerprints in the climate, you should be looking at both.

  129. In other words the effect of pavement is negligible.

    Yes, quite. The effect of pavement on climate would appear to be negligible. The effect of pavement on climate stations, however, is profound.

    Yes, only 2% of the world, if that, is paved over. Yet well over 90% of USHCN (i.e., the “best of the best”) climate stations are improperly sited (i.e., hugger-mugger with pavement, heated structures, or both) according to the standards of the NWS itself.

    Therefore the raw data itself is not to be trusted. As for the adjustments, since the methods, code, and manuals are concealed, they are not even to be seriously considered, far less, trusted. And to base policy of any consequence whatever on such results is absurd on the face of it.

    This does not even begin to address the considerable effects of inconsistent equipment, much of it with known problems (both spurious cooling and warming).

    If they do happen to be getting it right (which neither you nor I have any way of determining), it would appear at least as likely to be that their gross errors are canceling each other out as it is that their methodology is in any way valid.

  130. Tom,
    You imply I am a denier for suspecting that a change of less than 1% of the earths surface might be significant when a change to less than what, .001% of the atmosphere is, according to you, massively significant?

    Lets put this in perspective, what % of the earth’s suface temp is due to surface behavior and what % is due to atmospheric greenhouse effect?

  131. In fact the models use (an admittedly crude version of) the laws of physics to CALCULATE the effect of CO_2. Over the years the methods have been refined and the results appear to converge – thus giving a level of confidence in the result.

    I do not believe that is in a whole lot of dispute. It is the positive feedback equations that multiply these effects many times over that are in (great) dispute.

    If the 4-part positive feedback equation is in error, the entire tipping point premise is invalid.

  132. Back in January a blockbuster paper was published:

    SURFACE TEMPERATURE RECORDS: POLICY DRIVEN DECEPTION? by Joseph D’Aleo and Anthony Watts, Science and Public Policy Institute Original Paper, January 26, 2010.

    What the paper said, in part, was that the NASA temperature record was as messed up as CRU and NOAA records. Now, two months later, Fox News has finally picked up on that. Better late than never, I guess.

    I also guessed at the time that the D’Aleo-Watts paper was the turning point, or tipping point if you will. That was the moment CAGW was officially doomed to the dustbin of history. Nah nah nah nah, nah nah nah nah, hey hey hey, goodbye.

    So far, it looks like I was right. Congratulations Anthony, and thank you.

  133. Evan,
    Less than 2% of the US is paved, to try and extrapolate that globally it would be much less. The odd part to the equation is that the IPCC only seems to be looking at radiative behavior, which is why they show a net negative (cooling) forcing due to deforestation – the farmlands that replace the forests have a higher albedo.

    I did some back of the envelope calculations, comparing the albedo equivalent behavior for a green roof vs. an asphalt roof (sourced from Scientific American) and came up with a very rough estimate of .21 W/m2 for paving and structures. It doesn’t disprove anything, just seems to indicate that potentially this is significant. Hell, UHI thermals over cities affect bird migration patterns – it’s not insane to think that this might show up in the sat records too.

  134. “I do not believe that is in a whole lot of dispute. It is the positive feedback equations that multiply these effects many times over that are in (great) dispute.

    If the 4-part positive feedback equation is in error, the entire tipping point premise is invalid.”

    I have some experience with Atmospheric Modelling but have no idea what you are on about.

  135. “(I assume on the other side from you on the argument) to say that 1.6 ppm of CO2 is negligble too.”

    Then you would be wrong because the ratio of CO_2 to other gases is irrelevant as they are (aside from water vapour and methane) invisible to radiation in the infrared range – the range emitted by the Earth.

  136. A theory, if you were going to claim a year on year global temp rise when there wasn’t one and wanted to cover up your incorrect data for as long as possible then you would want to show cooling in the areas of english speaking, internet connected high population regions and show warming in the rest. Just look at the map.

    Fly in ointment is Australia.

  137. Tom,
    All I’m saying is that it should be measured, studied and accounted for. Check out LEED building standards, everyone other than the climate science community seems to understand how potent this issue is from a m2 perspective – it’s ridiculous with the Billions of dollars dumped into AGW research that nobody has bothered to look seriously at this issue – or the deforestation cooling for that matter.

    If there is, as is all but certain, real heating of the atmosphere going on from paving and building of structures – the impact from this activity is most likely being attributed incorrectly to CO2. Much of our paving and rapid expansion of urban centers correlates with that same rise in CO2, so if you’re in it for the science vs. cheering for a side I would think you would want unpack one vs. the other.

    Of course, you also implied I’m a denier for considering that UHI-based AGW might be occuring in addition to CO2 based AGW… so maybe you’ve already tipped your hat on that one.

    Regarding the %’s, I’m pulling these numbers from memory but they should be in the ballpark. to illustrate rough oder of magnitudes The earth’s surface is around 285 K, of which maybe 30 K is due to greenhouse effect? So roughly speaking 10% of the earth’s equilibrium temperature is due to the atmosphere while the rest is due to the interaction between the sun and the surface. Why would we not be just as concerned, or maybe more concerned, about human activity monkeying with the 90% part of that equation vs. the 10%?

    Notice I have never said CO2 is not part of the equation or implied that UHI effect is greater than GHG effect. All I am saying is that UHI effects are measurable, real, and should be accounted for. If you disagree with that so be it, but if you do please consider the term denial and to whom it should apply to in this situation. As pointed out to me by Science of Doom recently, the IPCC has massive error bars around land use because they apparently know their understanding and modeling around these areas is (I might describe it as poor) incomplete and error prone.

  138. Ref – Anu (17:40:04) :
    Richard (15:30:14) :
    “NASA doesnt have a clue on the climate data. They are even worse than GISS, who are pretty appalling.”
    You might be interested to learn that GISS is a NASA organization:

    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/

    ____________________________
    Somehow I had the idea that GISS was “part of” but “totally seperate and independent from” NASA. If GISS “is” NASA, is NASA able to “control” GISS? If NASA “can’t” control GISS then GISS “must be” something different from NASA. Does GISS do what “Mission Control” says? If not, GISS must not “be” part of NASA’s mission, right?

    This is giving me a headache, adios!

  139. “If there is, as is all but certain, real heating of the atmosphere going on from paving and building of structures – the impact from this activity is most likely being attributed incorrectly to CO2.”

    This is nonsense. On average pavement absorbs energy during the day and re-radiates it at night. The ground below does the same. It is hardly ‘all but certain’ that there is a net heating. In fact the zeroth order effect is hotter temperatures over the pavement during the day and cooler temperatures at night and NO net warming.

    The above is called the diurnal cycle. I find it interesting that that you focus on the heating part of the cycle while ignoring the cooling. Is that because the latter doesn’t help your argument?

  140. Tom W (12:18:20) :

    “I think you are making too much of the fact that they used a climate model since it was only used to construct a model of the diurnal temperature variations to be used eliminate aliasing”

    I assume you meant “biasing”, not “aliasing”. Now, first of all, this need for a “diurnal adjustment” supposedly comes about because the time at which a satellite passes over a given point on the surface varies minutely (orbital drift) from day to day, but over time, it can get off by hours; so years ago, it was passing over, say, Atlanta, GA at, say, 12:40 pm, but now it’s passing over Atlanta at 4:30 pm. But this doesn’t make sense. All of the NOAA satellites have nominal orbital times of either 101 or 102 minutes. These lengths of time do not divide evenly into a day, nor does any length of time between 101 and 102 minutes, nor any length of time that would round to 101 or 102 minutes. It is, therefore, impossible that these satellites would fly over a given spot at the same time anyway, even without orbital drift. So they MUST have some system already in place to adjust for the varying times (non-drift-related) at which the satellite passes over a given point (which changes by over 6 hours each day for a 101-minute orbit, and nearly 3 hours for a 102-minute orbit). This system, whatever it is, could easily be modified to adjust for the additional 35-40 seconds per day caused by orbital drift.

    That said, there are surely other means of adjusting for the diurnal cycle, rather than using a controversial (yes, I’ll call it that, because it is so) climate model. Why would Mears use this method and open himself up to this type of criticism, unless it was the only adjustment that resulted in what he wanted to see?

    “In fact the models use (an admittedly crude version of) the laws of physics to CALCULATE the effect of CO_2. Over the years the methods have been refined and the results appear to converge – thus giving a level of confidence in the result.”

    The models IGNORE several natural forcings, because their authors don’t UNDERSTAND them. And as a result, the models are WRONG. They might “converge” on each other, but they most certainly do NOT converge on reality. All of those models predicted WARMING over the last 12 years, and we know that did not happen. When confronted with this failure, the models’ proponents say that they’re not designed to predict “short-term” climate. But if they’re no good for such “short-tterm” time periods as 12 years, then why, for Pete’s sake, would anyone use them to predict HOURLY temperature variations?

    Wouldn’t it make more sense to just use ground-based measurements of the diurnal cycle to adjust the satellite records of tropospheric temps? I know the variation isn’t quite as much in the troposphere as at the surface, but Mears admits that by his understanding, “[f]or MSU2 [LT temp], the globally averaged diurnal cycle is dominated by the surface and near-surface diurnal cycle over land regions”. So, instead of using easily-measured surface temps that he thinks are well correlated with LT temps, he uses a model that he has no clue whether it replicates reality.

    (Oh, by the way, I was able to find a reference in Mears’s paper to the specific model he used. It was the Community Climate Model 3.)

    For that matter, I don’t understand what was wrong with Christy et al’s diurnal adjustment, which Mears criticizes just before revealing his own method. Christy looked at temperature measurements on both sides of the satellite’s path, with the east side being slightly further along in its diurnal cycle than the west side, and the differences in temp provided the basis for this diurnal adjustment. Mears says this method is “extremely sensitive to small changes in the satellite attitude, particularly the satellite roll angle, calling its accuracy into question”. But this isn’t an issue unless the satellite attitude actually CHANGES, and Mears presents no proof thereof. I mean, it’s not like there’s anything going on up there, 500 miles above the Earth’s surface, that would cause satellites to change their attitudes. And even if the attitudes did change, as long as the attitude at the time of measurement was KNOWN (and surely this is included in satellite telemetry), adjustments could be easily made. After all, if attitude has this big an effect on temperature DIFFERENCES between the east and west sides of the satellite’s path, then the effect on ACTUAL temperatures would be at least an order of magnitude greater. So there MUST be some mechanism for adjusting readings for satellite attitude – if there isn’t, then the satellite record is useless.

    Regards,
    Trevor

  141. evanmjones (21:41:49) :

    “In other words the effect of pavement is negligible.”

    Yes, quite. The effect of pavement on climate would appear to be negligible. The effect of pavement on climate stations, however, is profound.

    Thanks for sparing me how to respond Evan. Am I really perceiving an inability to differentiate the effect of UHI on climate vs. UHI impact on temperature measurement? Since the measure of the former is contingent on the latter, it cannot be neglected.

  142. Tom W (06:22:42) : On average pavement absorbs energy during the day and re-radiates it at night. The ground below does the same. It is hardly ‘all but certain’ that there is a net heating. In fact the zeroth order effect is hotter temperatures over the pavement during the day and cooler temperatures at night and NO net warming.

    By what mechanism of physics are cooler than ambient temperatures attained during the diurnal cycle? Grass would certainly be cooler than ambient, that is why dew occurs on it (transpiration). Never got any dew on my boots on pavement, so far.

  143. By what mechanism of physics are cooler than ambient temperatures attained during the diurnal cycle?

    Given that the term ‘ambient temperature’ merely refers to the temperature of the surroundings, this question is so vague it is meaningless.

  144. Tom W (06:22:42):
    “If there is, as is all but certain, real heating of the atmosphere going on from paving and building of structures – the impact from this activity is most likely being attributed incorrectly to CO2.”

    This is nonsense. On average pavement absorbs energy during the day and re-radiates it at night. The ground below does the same. It is hardly ‘all but certain’ that there is a net heating. In fact the zeroth order effect is hotter temperatures over the pavement during the day and cooler temperatures at night and NO net warming.

    No it’s not – take a FLIR image of a road running through a field at 6:00 AM (i.e. right before sunrise) and that road will still be warmer than the surrounding natural surfaces – I would put money on it. You assume this all cycles through during the night but it is not a stretch at all to think that average temperatures for road will be higher than a natural surface over any reasonable stretch of time.

    The above is called the diurnal cycle. I find it interesting that that you focus on the heating part of the cycle while ignoring the cooling. Is that because the latter doesn’t help your argument?

    Under what circumstances would you expect to see consistently lower temperatures for a road than for the field of grass sitting next to it? I think it’s possible, that if ambient temperatures are very low and conditions are severely overcast for extended periods that you could see this for a short time when things warm up and the sun comes out… but that would be a (small?) exception, not the rule. In general, roads seem to warm up quite quickly during melt times in the winter.

  145. Yes, quite. The effect of pavement on climate would appear to be negligible. The effect of pavement on climate stations, however, is profound.

    Not really. Since most of the Earth’s surface is water….a relatively small fraction of the data is so ‘contaminated’, The effect of this ‘contamination’ which can be examined directly by comparing analyses with and without such stations, is found to be small. One can also use the statistical correlations between contaminated and non-contaminated stations to remove any bias.

    Further while the urban heat island does increase the local temperature of urban areas it does not necessarily produce warming. An urban area will experience warming as a result of the heat island effect only if the heat island itself is increasing with time. This is not the case for many cities.

    See

    “Urbanization effects in large-scale temperature records, with an emphasis on China”

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2008/2008JD009916.shtml

  146. “You assume this all cycles through during the night but it is not a stretch at all to think that average temperatures for road will be higher than a natural surface over any reasonable stretch of time.”

    It is a stretch as it would imply that heat is transferred from the road surface to the atmosphere throughout the day. Where does the energy come from?

  147. Tom W (11:11:50) :
    “You assume this all cycles through during the night but it is not a stretch at all to think that average temperatures for road will be higher than a natural surface over any reasonable stretch of time.”

    It is a stretch as it would imply that heat is transferred from the road surface to the atmosphere throughout the day. Where does the energy come from?

    Heat is transferred from a road to the atmosphere during the day and night – did I imply otherwise?

    …and the energy comes in from the sun. I don’t understand what your point here is. I never implied that energy magically appears or disappears in violation of basic physics.

    The point I was making is that the equilibrium temperature of a road, on average, over any reasonable period of time will be higher than a natural surface. That implies net energy gain and stored.

    Even at the same albedo (grass @ 15% and pavement @ 15%) the natural surface will release the energy gained back into the atmosphere much more quickly, and maintain a surface equilibrium temperature much closer to that of the ambient atmosphere temperature than the pavement will.

    Because of that, at night the natural surface temperature will tend to equalize with ambient atmospheric temperature very quickly, while pavement will release the heat much more slowly and likely not get down to ambient atmospheric temperature before the sun comes back out.

    All of this is easily and readily observed. Explaining this from a physics standpoint is much more difficult, I do not disagree, and if I have misstepped anywhere I would appreciate a correction… but the physical explanations have to jive with observable behavior, and pavement exhibiting higher average temperatures than natural surfaces IS a readily observable, and commonly accepted observation.

  148. Tom W:

    “I suggest you try to learn the basics of signal processing before advising others how to do it…”

    And I suggest that YOU read the article you referenced. You got it all wrong, bud. Your hero Mears didn’t use that term. Perhaps that’s because the term “aliasing” doesn’t really apply to the situation with satellite drift. Aliasing is a false signal that is the result of inadequate sampling of the original signal (in this case, it could be viewed as a problem of “low resolution”). The problem that Mears was trying to overcome was one of INCONSTISTENT sampling (different times from day to day), not inadequate sampling.

    Arguably, you could have been referring to the bigger “problem”* of separating the tropospheric signal from the stratospheric signal. But if you read Mears’s paper, I think you’ll agree that he got around this problem “by using the MSU nadir-limb contrast to extrapolate the channel 2 brightness temperatures downward and remove nearly all of the stratospheric influence”. In any event, the error in signal processing due to stratospheric cooling would STILL not be called one of “aliasing”, but one of “contamination” (of the tropospheric signal by stratospheric cooling).

    *Furthermore, I’m not so sure that it is appropriate to separate the stratospheric cooling effect from tropospheric temperatures. It boils down to the question: When the models predicted that tropospheric temperatures should increase 1.2 times as much as surface temperatures, did they or did they not include stratospheric cooling in those calculations? If the models DID include the effect of stratospheric cooling on tropospheric temperatures, then we should leave the effect of stratospheric cooling IN the tropospheric temperatures when comparing them to the model predictions. It is entirely inappropriate to attempt to separate the two in the real-world data because they are not separated in the model.

    If, on the other hand, the models did NOT include the effect of stratospheric cooling on tropospheric temperatures, then the models are worthless anyway. If they missed this effect, then they also missed the cooling effect that this in turn would have on the surface. And therefore, the models are drastically over-predicting surface warming. This would explain a lot, including the complete failure of the models to predict the lack of warming since 1998; and it also fits well with my estimation of the competence of the climate modelers. But somehow, I don’t think this is what happened, because the models clearly predict a higher ratio (1.54) of tropospheric warming to surface warming in the Tropics, where the tropopause is higher (troposphere is thicker) and stratospheric cooling will not effect the troposphere as much.

    So which is it, Tom? Do the models include stratospheric cooling or not?

    Regards,
    Trevor

  149. Scratch that last post. I thought you were claiming the road surface was warmer than the air during the entire day. You obviously were not.

    I agree that the road will be warmer than the surrounding natural surface. But warmER does not imply warmING. Warming involves a temperature trend in TIME whereas you seem to be talking about temperature variations in SPACE. Not the same thing.

    According to the link I posted above

    “Global surface temperature trends, based on land and marine data, show warming of about 0.8°C over the last 100 years. This rate of warming is sometimes questioned because of the existence of well-known Urban Heat Islands (UHIs). We show examples of the UHIs at London and Vienna, where city center sites are warmer than surrounding rural locations. Both of these UHIs however DO NOT CONTRIBUTE TO WARMING TRENDS over the 20th century because the influences of the cities on surface temperatures have not changed over this time.”

    In other words it is only the SUBSET of urban heat islands that are GROWING that would contribute to warming. The same is true of the urban heat island effect on the measurements.

  150. Tom,
    Maybe where we’re getting wrapped around the axle here tracks back to this (emphasis added):

    Further while the urban heat island does increase the local temperature of urban areas it does not necessarily produce warming. An urban area will experience warming as a result of the heat island effect only if the heat island itself is increasing with time. This is not the case for many cities.

    I agree with you. If you throw down a square of pavement in a field, both from a surface temperature and a surface station temperature measurement (although the spatial effects of this are not well measured or understood) this would manifest over some period of time (maybe only a few days) as step change of some magnitude. Eventually the effect would reach equilibrium – a set amount of surface change will produce a finite amount of increase in equilibrium temperature. By itself that one square of pavement will not generate an endless warming trend – absolutely, 100% agreed.

    That said, and again, the spatial effects of this are not well understood or measured beyond the usual 1-2 C average UHI for “a city” (almost always of undetermined size) that is typically cited… and what happens when a city starts having suburbs pop up around it (will the center of the city become incrementally hotter?) is, AFAIK, unknown.

    We need to be careful as well, to distinguish between what I think is the implication of M&M 2007 – that grid cells are “contaminated” by UHI – which implies an error in the surface station temp records due to improper extrapolation of UHI effect, and what is a real and measurable change in temperature in UHI areas. They are two different issues, and I have only been talking about the latter.

  151. “Anu (20:30:54) :
    [...]
    Perhaps a country at the same latitude as Labrador, Canada shouldn’t be subsidizing PV power. But I bet you take advantage of windpower at least as well as the Danish. ”

    What advantage? On average, they deliver 20% of their nominal peak performance. The grid has to be able to absorb 100% though, so on average the wind power output has to be supplemented by 80% gas power – the spinning reserve. So all that this buys us is that the gas plants run on 80% instead of 100% and have to ramp up and down all the time, shortening their lifetime and running in a suboptimal way.

    “Also, the idea is that as wind turbines get bigger, better engineered, and economies of scale manufacturing tens of thousands of them kick in, subsidies should come down.”

    I think the grid won’t take many more. We would have to increase the spinning reserve as well and end up with way more electricity than we need at a price that makes it unattractive to use, so a totally distorted market.

    “Aren’t the Germans still good engineers and manufacturers? Or did that die out last century…”

    The engineers do what they can. The politicians though seem to be just as stupid as 70 years ago, at least concerning the price-fixing.

    When there is a lot of wind, the electricity exchange marketplace in Germany offers negative prices for electricity. We pay people for taking the surplus to prevent a grid meltdown. The damage caused by this alone is in the billions of euros.

    This will get worse as more renewable capacity gets installed. The problem is that no large scale storage exists or can be easily created in Germany.

    “Der SPIEGEL 10/2010 berichtete, zwischen Anfang September 2009 und Anfang März 2010 hätten die Strompreise nicht weniger als an 29 Tagen wegen des Windstromüberschusses ins Negative gedreht. Profitieren können davon zum Beispiel die Betreiber österreichischer Pumpspeicher-Kraftwerke, die diesen Strom zu negativen Preisen einkaufen, um mit seiner Hilfe Wasser in Hochspeicher zu pumpen. Bei Spitzenbedarf können sie dann das gespeicherte Wasser über Fallrohre auf Turbinen leiten und den damit erzeugten Strom an der Börse zu Höchstpreisen absetzen.

    from

    http://ef-magazin.de/2010/03/26/1957-deutsche-energiepolitik-franzoesischer-atomstrom-oder-haeufige-blackouts

    translation:
    “The SPIEGEL 10/2010 reported that between early September 2009 and early March 2010, electricity prices turned negative on 29 days because of the surplus wind power. Take advantage of it can, for example, the Austrian operator pumped-storage power plants that buy this electricity at negative prices to pump water into high line with his help. At peak demand, they can then the stored water through lead pipes to turbines and sell the generated electricity to the market at high prices.”

    All very nice for the Austrians, but an expensive piece of junk for Germany.

  152. “DirkH (12:19:27) :
    [...]
    When there is a lot of wind, the electricity exchange marketplace in Germany offers negative prices for electricity.”

    Clarification: BULK prices on the sport market for people that are capable of accepting some MegaWatts NOW! Unfortunately, not end consumer prices.
    Maybe it will some day be possible to profit from fluctuating prices by installing batteries in my home and a smart meter, we’ll see. But at the moment, there are no end consumer tariffs that exploit these possibilities.

  153. Trevor (11:33:09) : And I suggest that YOU read the article you referenced. You got it all wrong, bud. Your hero Mears didn’t use that term.,/i>

    Aliasing? Technically true I supposed but he did use the term ALIAS…in the SECOND PARAGRAPH OF THE ARTICLE NO LESS. To quote:

    “An important component of this analysis is to account for long term drifts in the measurements that arise from drifts in local measurement time that can ALIAS the local diurnal cycle into the long term record”

    http://www.remss.com/papers/Correcting_MSU_Channel_2_Temperature_for_Diurnal_Drifts_IGARSS.pdf

    Trevor (11:33:09):Perhaps that’s because the term “aliasing” doesn’t really apply to the situation with satellite drift.

    I suggest you read the above quote again.

  154. Tom,
    I don’t mean to pile on here but one additional thought spurred by your quote regarding Vienna and London… In the US at least, there does appear to be a difference in temperature trends that correlate with population. On a km2 basis, surface stations that are in higher populated areas exhibit higher temperature trends. Or at least that’s what Dr. Spencer seems to show for the here:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/16/spencer-direct-evidence-that-most-u-s-warming-since-1973-could-be-spurious/

    I don’t pretend to be able to explain that with paving and structures. At some point, and to your point about Vienna and London, – think also NYC, Tokyo, Hong Kong, etc – from a footprint standpoint you would expect the effect to reach saturation point. Past that point, the surface is effectively (with the exception of usually long-established green areas like parks) structure changes tend to consist of smaller buildings getting replaced with bigger/taller buildings.

    That said, there is a consumption (as I call it) aspect of UHI to consider as well. Compare London in 1900 with London 2010 – there were no cars (losing 80% of their fuel consumption directly to heat), Central Air and Heat, electrical service, etc.

    By my admittedly rough calculations, power use would be around 10% of the magnitude of the changes due to paving and structures. Does that explain the entirety odd correlation demonstrated by Dr. Spencer – probably not. Like I said, I don’t pretend to be able to explain all this stuff, just have a gut feel that it really needs to be studied and accounted for, and that as of now, it has not been.

    In case it doesn’t continue, this has been an interesting conversation. I think being challenged as to what I think I know is a good thing. If I’ve learned anything in life, it’s that the more I know… the more I know I don’t know : )

    Regards

  155. Correction:

    I don’t pretend to be able to explain that with paving and structures. At some point, and to your point about Vienna and London, – think also NYC, Tokyo, Hong Kong, etc – from a footprint standpoint you would expect the effect to reach saturation point. Past that point, the surface is effectively covered with structures and pavement (with the exception of usually long-established green areas like parks) structure changes tend to consist of smaller buildings getting replaced with bigger/taller buildings.

    Sorry, was trying to multitask with my single threaded processor :P

  156. Not really. Since most of the Earth’s surface is water….a relatively small fraction of the data is so ‘contaminated’, The effect of this ‘contamination’ which can be examined directly by comparing analyses with and without such stations, is found to be small.

    There are not a lot of ocean sensors (unless you count ARGO, which shows slight cooling).

    There are a number of larger errors (both warming and cooling) with surface stations that may be canceling each other out. More on that in future, though, as research is currently in progress.

    There is a large direct offset effect (demonstrated and currently undisputed). But there is also an effect on trend, particularly Tmin. (Menne failed to take certain factors into consideration.)

    One can also use the statistical correlations between contaminated and non-contaminated stations to remove any bias.

    One can, but one doesn’t. According to what we know about NOAA and GISS procedures, no microsite adjustment is applied. NOAA believes it unncessary (as I said, Menne missed a few “tricks”). GISS applies a (small and controversial) UHI adjustment, while NOAA USHCN2 applies none at all.

  157. I agree that the road will be warmer than the surrounding natural surface. But warmER does not imply warmING. Warming involves a temperature trend in TIME whereas you seem to be talking about temperature variations in SPACE. Not the same thing.

    Yes. That is important not to forget. That is what is currently being looked at: effect on trend as opposed to offset.

    Consider also that if proximity to concrete increases warming effects in a warming phase, it should also increase cooling effects during a cooling phase (as the effect “undoes” itself). Provided always that the microenvironment remains constant during the study period . . . if concrete is added (or removed) meanwhile, all bets are off.

  158. Evan,
    An equal and opposite cooling effect does not fit the observations. When it snows in the winter, even on residential streets that do not get much traffic (which in fairness should be considered as a possible bias) it sticks on natural surfaces (trees, grass) before it “sticks” (i.e. falls and doesn’t melt) on roads, and melts on roads before it melts on natural surfaces.

    I’m not trying to be argumentative here, but everything points to manmade surfaces exhibiting a higher average equlibrium temperatures than natural surfaces. Transpiration and, I think, Stephan-Boltzmann (sp? – the folks who talk about energy transfer as a function of emissivity, temperature and surface area) explain this quite readily. An object with less surface area (again, compared to fins on a radiator for leaves or grass) with all other things (like albedo) being equal will tend to exhibit higher equilibrium temperatures than an equivalent object with less surface area.

    Explain a situation where, for extended periods, paving is cooler than the surrounding natural surfaces? I’ve never seen it but I would be happy to slap down my current ideas on things with good evidence. Neither the observations, or the physics seem to back up that idea.

  159. Come to think of it, I could have sworn I saw a documentary about an attempted road build in Alaska (maybe to support the building of the Alaska pipeline but not sure) where they put asphalt directly over the tundra (and underlying permafrost) and the road sank into the ground. They had to go back and build a roadbed up on top of the natural surface to keep it from melting the underlying earth and sinking.

    If a net cooling effect cannot be demonstrated at that latitude, I’m not sure it would ever show up in areas with higher levels of insolation.

  160. “Explain a situation where, for extended periods, paving is cooler than the surrounding natural surfaces?”

    Here are comments from the Newfoundland Department of Transportation and Works who have simultaneous measurements of pavement and atmospheric temperatures. These indicate that the pavement can be hotter or colder than the air

    The Importance of knowing pavement temperatures verses air temperatures

    Air temperatures are not usually good indicators of what the roadway surface temperature actually is. During the fall the pavement is often kept warmer than the surrounding air because of the warm soil. During the spring the reverse may be true. The pavement temperatures can be colder than the air because the soil is still frozen from the low winter temperatures. The sun also has a strong influence on the pavement temperatures. It can help heat the pavement and speed the melting process. Air and pavement temperatures can often differ by many degrees. On a bitterly cold early winter day when the air temperature is well below freezing, the pavement or surface temperature may be somewhat warmer, primarily because the subsurface temperature has not yet cooled.

  161. NickB. (13:57:57) posted a link to Spencer who says

    My last few posts have described a new method for quantifying the average Urban Heat Island (UHI) warming effect as a function of population density, using thousands of pairs of temperature measuring stations within 150 km of each other. The results supported previous work which had shown that UHI warming increases logarithmically with population, with the greatest rate of warming occurring at the lowest population densities as population density increases.

    There is a confusion here associated with the fact that Spenser flips between population and population density. These are not the same. Did he mean population rather than population density? If not it would imply he has TWO relations…one relating warming to population and one relating it to population density. I doubt this is the case. So for the purposes of discussion I’ll assume he just means population.

    A simple model of a city follows on assuming a CONSTANT population density and growth due to horizontal spread. For a circular city it’s size is given by its radius and its growth is characterized by a changing radius.

    Suppose the radius of the city increases by Δr every year due to construction at its edges. Then the city area increases by 2πrΔr. Suppose the new area experiences a warming ΔT say and the rest of the city is unaffected. Then average warming over the entire city is 2(Δr/r)ΔT. For those familiar with the calculus this implies logarithmic growth with time in the limit of small Δr.

  162. “For those familiar with the calculus this implies logarithmic growth with time in the limit of small Δr.”

    Under the assumption that r grows linearly in time

  163. evanmjones (21:41:49) : Yes, quite. The effect of pavement on climate would appear to be negligible. The effect of pavement on climate stations, however, is profound.

    More generally the claim that the combined effects of instrument placement, the urban heat island and the growth of urban areas contribute to the warming in the temperature record was debunked some time ago…

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4021197.stm

  164. Tom,
    Regarding the Newfoundland study – no disagreements there. The atmosphere (air) temps can fluctuate wildly and quickly, no doubt, and the surface temps of pavement *or* natural surfaces change much more slowly.

    The point here is the difference between pavement and the natural surfaces it replaces. I don’t see anyrhing in that study that seems to disagree with what I see as commonly accepted observations on surface behavior – and that is that pavement tends to cool more slowly than the natural surfaces it replaces, and warm up more quickly (i.e. it exhibits higher average temperatures in general).

    Maybe I have confused this some – the surface temps I’m describing are the equivalent of a FLIR image description or, said another way, the “real” surface temps – what this means from 2m off the ground (surface temp station height) is a whole different ball of wax. One would expect there to be some effect on average… but the spatial relationship, direction and strength of wind speeds in the area, and maybe many other variables I’m not thinking about (always a possibility), will all effect how this would affect a given station.

  165. Tom,
    Regarding Dr. Spencer, I’m not sure exactly what he was referring to with the reference to “population” – it is possible that it could be work by others that derived similar relationships by using population, instead of population density. The question would then be, which is the better fit?

    Spencer’s analysis (the one linked at least) was strictly centered on population densities. You should check out the population tool from Columbia he used – the link is in there somewhere – very cool stuff.

  166. Tom W (13:27:34) :

    “Aliasing? Technically true I supposed but he did use the term ALIAS…in the SECOND PARAGRAPH OF THE ARTICLE NO LESS. To quote:”

    ‘An important component of this analysis is to account for long term drifts in the measurements that arise from drifts in local measurement time that can ALIAS the local diurnal cycle into the long term record'”

    http://www.remss.com/papers/Correcting_MSU_Channel_2_Temperature_for_Diurnal_Drifts_IGARSS.pdf

    Ah, there’s the problem. I was talking about Mears et al (2005). You’re talking about Mears et al (2002). (For the record, I mentioned Mears et al (2005) in my very first comment, and never mentioned the 2002 paper; and the only time you attached a date to any paper that Mears was an author of, you said “2005”, so if you want to blame someone for the misunderstanding, it’s clearly YOUR fault. No one ever said anything about a 2002 paper, until now. And you’re only bringing it up now because I proved you wrong on your arrogant and condescending correction of my assumption that you were talking about “bias” rather than “alias”, when the more general term “bias” was, clearly, the more appropriate term.)

    You are correct, Mears did use the term “alias” in his 2002 paper. Of course, I maintain that his use of the term is incorrect, as “alias” refers specifically to a problem of an inadequate rate of sampling, not inconsistent sampling. And I think it’s safe to say Mears now realizes this as well, since he dropped the term from his 2005 paper, which was dealing with exactly the same issue. And so it is you, Tom who needs to “learn the basics of signal processing”, as Mears apparently did sometime between 2002 and 2005.

    But, since you brought up the 2002 paper, let’s talk about that for a minute. Mears estimates that “this diurnal correction increases the resulting global decadal trends by 0.02 to 0.05 K/decade, with the largest effect on trend over land”. Using the upper and lower limits of this range as fixed values for water and land, respectively, and taking a weighted average (.7 for water and .3 for land) results in 0.029 K/decade, which I’ll round to 0.03. Now, Mears didn’t specify what data set this increase was in relation to, but there’s really only two things it can be. It’s either 1) the UNadjusted RSS tropospheric temperature trend (0.090 K/decade) or 2) the adjusted trend estimated by Christy et al (2000) (0.060 K/decade). Adding the weighted average trend-increase of 0.03 K/decade yields an adjusted trend of 0.12 K/decade when added to the unadjusted RSS trend and 0.09 K/decade when added to Christy’s adjusted trend. I’ll give Mears and you the benefit of the doubt and go with the larger (RSS + wtd-avg Mears adjustment) figure of 0.12 K/decade. This is still less than the surface temperature trend (0.16 K/decade) and less than 2/3 of what the models predict for the global tropospheric temperature trend (0.16 x 1.2 = 0.192)

    But even if we forget about weighted averages, give you and Mears the benefit of the doubt, and take the upper limit (0.05) of Mears’s range of trend increases, and apply it only to the unadjusted RSS trend, you come up with a tropospheric temperature trend of just 0.14 K/decade. (Note: this is the largest possible adjusted value of the tropospheric temperature trend that you could get from any interpretation of this paper, and this is a very unlikely interpretation.) Even that figure is still less than the surface temperature trend, and 27% below what the models say it should be. Are you sure this is the Mears et al paper you want to hang your hat on, Tom?

    Also, you haven’t answered my question about whether the models included stratospheric cooling in their calculations of how much the troposphere should warm relative to the surface. So I’ll ask it again. Do the models that predict that the troposphere should warm 1.2 times as much as the surface include the effect of stratospheric warming in their calcultions (in which case, any adjustment to remove stratospheric warming from the tropospheric temperature trend is entirely inappropriate), OR do they NOT include that effect (in which case, the models are significantly over-predicting surface warming)?

    Regards,
    Trevor

  167. Trevor (06:22:55) : Ah, there’s the problem. I was talking about Mears et al (2005). You’re talking about Mears et al (2002).

    Nice try but in fact both papers speak of aliasing, 2002 explicitly and 2005 implicitly. According to the 2005 paper

    If the temperature being measured changes with the time of day (e.g., the diurnal cycle of daytime heating and nighttime cooling), slow changes in observation time can cause spurious long-term trends, which must be removed from each satellite’s data record before attempting to merge the data together into a single data

    In other words they are concerned with misinterpreting the diurnal oscillation as a long term trend.That is aliasing demonstrating that you claim.

    Perhaps that’s because the term “aliasing” doesn’t really apply to the situation with satellite drift.

    is hogwash.

    If that is not enough we have a 2007 paper containing the phrase

    “So which channels and satellites are most affected by the changes in sampling due to diurnal aliasing?”

    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/BAMS-86-10-1437

    It seems that everybody is wrong but you…who, strangely, didn’t even know what aliasing was 48 hours ago.

  168. “Stratospheric cooling”

    This phrase still bothers me. Technically speaking, there’s no such thing as “cool” or “cooling”. What we call “cool” is really just a lack of warmth, and what we call “cooling” is really the removal of warmth. So when we say, for instance, that “an ice cube dropped in a glass of tea cools the tea”, what we mean is that the tea loses heat to the ice, which causes the tea to become “cooler” and for the ice to become warmer (and then to melt, and then for the resultant slightly-above-freezing liquid water to warm further, approaching a temperature equal to the tea). Similarly. when we say that “the stratosphere cools the troposphere”, what that really means is that heat energy flows out of the troposphere into the stratosphere. However you look at it, heat doesn’t just disappear, as we know from the Law of Conservation of Energy. It has to go somewhere, and if the stratosphere is what is causing the heat to leave the troposphere, then the stratosphere is where that heat is going.

    So, what we have, essentially, is a difference in temperature between the stratosphere and the troposphere, with the stratosphere being cooler. We know that heat tends to diffuse from areas where there’s a lot of it to areas where there is less of it. So it makes sense that heat would flow from the troposphere to the stratosphere.

    Now, the stratosphere is (about) 4 times thicker than the troposphere (I say “about” because the thicknesses of both vary widely, but the ratio of the means is near 4 to 1). Now because the atmosphere is a sphere and not a rectangular prism, the four-fold thickness of the stratosphere actually results in slightly more than 4 times the VOLUME of the troposphere. But because the thickness of the stratosphere is so small compared to its radius, “4 times as much volume” as the troposphere is “close enough for government work”.

    Let us say, for the sake of argument (and because no one has answered my question on this yet), that the CGM models that predict that the troposphere will warm 1.2 times as much as the surface, IGNORE the effect of global cooling.

    Now, if we really believe that the troposphere should (without stratospheric cooling) warm about 1.2 times as much as the surface, then during the past 30-odd years, when surface temperatures warmed by 0.16 K/decade, we would expect to see 0.192 K/decade of warming in the troposphere. What we ACTUALLY see, however, is, at most, 0.09 K/decade (RSS unadjusted trend). That means that, if we really believe stratospheric cooling ameliorates tropospheric warming, then over half (0.102 K/decade) of the 0.192 K/decade expected tropospheric warming is being sucked off into the stratosphere.

    But if the troposphere is losing heat to the stratosphere, then that drastically reduces (by over half, in fact) the amount of heat that it can lose to the surface. The heat lost from the troposphere to the surface is what we call the “greenhouse effect”. But that greenhouse effect is cut in half by stratospheric cooling of the troposphere! And the CGM models are completely ignoring this. The CGM models, therefore, are drastically over-predicting the surface warming trend.

    Unless, of course, contrary to our initial assumption, the CGMs do include the effect of stratospheric cooling in their predictions that the troposphere will warm 1.2 times as much as the surface. If that is the case, then, as I have noted several times already, it is inappropriate to “adjust” tropospheric temperature trends for stratospheric cooling.

    So, any warmists out there? Any CGM apologists? Any tropospheric-temperature-trend deniers? Tom W, where are you, buddy? Show me where I’m wrong! And please, be as arrogant and condescending as you can be. That will make my eventual victory all the sweeter.

    Regards,
    Trevor

  169. Tom:

    Speaking of “nice tries”…

    As I’ve already told you (twice now, in fact), “alias” or “aliasing” refers to a inaccurate signal caused by an inadequate rate of sampling, not by inconstistent sampling (which is what Mears, in both 2002 and 2005, was looking at). That comes directly from the Wikipedia article you linked to There is nothing in the word “spurious” (or any other word in your quote for that matter) that implies an “aliasing” type of error.

    Maybe I didn’t know what “alias” meant 48 hours ago. But you STILL don’t, Tom.

    However, thanks for the quote from the 2007 paper. Is that Mears as well? If so, it confirms that, like you, he still doesn’t understand what “alias” means.

    Regards,
    Trevor

  170. Trevor (12:11:30) : aliasing” refers to a inaccurate signal caused by an inadequate rate of sampling

    Much too vague. Aliasing is more than just an “inaccurate signal”, it’s inaccurate in a very particular way. To recognize that the Mears 2005 quote I gave implies he is studying aliasing this has to be appreciated.

    All I can do is offer another link. Try it and then go back and read the Mears 2005 quote I gave.

    http://mathworld.wolfram.com/Aliasing.html

    However, thanks for the quote from the 2007 paper. Is that Mears as well?

    The third paper whose authors you claim don’t know what they are talking about? No Mears is not an author.

    I also offer a THIRD Mears paper from 2006 which states once again that the issue is aliasing…

    The NOAA satellites that fly the MSU
    instruments are flown in sun-synchronous polar
    orbits. The local equator crossing time for these
    orbits drifts slowly over the lifetime of the satellite,
    leading to slow changes of the local measurement
    time that if uncorrected, would alias the diurnal
    cycle into the long-term data record. This effect
    can be removed if sufficient details about the
    diurnal cycle as measured by the MSU channel in
    question can be obtained.

    ams.confex.com/ams/pdfpapers/104116.pdf

    Although I doubt you will believe your lying eyes.

    Finally you seem to think that ‘inconsistent sampling’ is a technical term, it’s not…it’s merely another way of saying ‘bad sampling’, sampling that gives rise to significant error. Aliasing is therefore a form of ‘inconsistent sampling’.

  171. Why can’t we send these people before a grand jury for them to return a true bill and send the matter on for trial?

    All it needs is some money (I don’t have it).

    The universities sector has blown its credibility. It sems to me truth (as I was taught as an undergraduate) has gone out of the window. It is more like calypso song:-

    “The whole idea of calypso song
    Is that you make it up as you go along”

    Go for it!!

  172. Yes, I understand all that, Tom. And you’re still wrong. I know my explanation of “aliasing” was vague – I didn’t want to spend 3,000 words explaining it, when a half dozen sufficed for establishing that you are wrong. Getting more specific most certainly does not help your argument. The new reference you provided still doesn’t describe aliasing in a way that comes close to including the effects of satellite drift.

    And yes, I know that “inconsistent sampling” is not a technical term. It was just the first term that came to mind that the general public might understand. Doesn’t change a thing. Though both satellite drift and “aliasing” can be called “bad sampling” (that’s not a technical term either, by the way), aliasing is a very specific type of bad sampling (which I referred to as inadequate sampling, which isn’t a technical term either) which satellite drift simply does not fall under.

    Look, Tom, I understand that you made a mistake, and now you feel the only way you can save face is to keep arguing your point even after everyone knows you’re wrong. You’re just making yourself look like a fool. And I would love to continue helping you to do so. But there’s a much more important discussion that I would very much like to have with you, or any other tropospheric-temperature-trend denier. So, for the sake of discussing this more important topic, I’m going to let you continue to believe your incorrect definition of “aliasing”, and stop belittling you for it, on the condition that you stop belittling me for my CORRECT definition, as summarized from BOTH of the references you provided links for.

    The more important topic, as I have mentioned several times now, is whether the CGMs that predict tropospheric warming include the effect of “stratospheric cooling” in their calculations. This is very important because, if they DO include that effect, then it is entirely inappropriate to perform any kind of adjustment to tropospheric temperatures before comparing them to the models’ predictions. On the other hand, if the models do NOT include this effect, then they are missing a huge source of negative feedback, which will reduce the ultimate effect on surface temperatures by more than half of what the models predict. Either way, the models are clearly wrong.

    I know you’ve seen this Tom, because you’re still reading my posts about “aliasing”. And from your lack of comment on it, I can only assume you have no answer for it. So why don’t you go ask Gavin (RealClimate) how to respond?

    Regards,
    Trevor

  173. Corrected post…

    Tom W (05:57:56) : Your comment is awaiting moderation
    “Look, Tom, I understand that you made a mistake..”

    Let’s see. Trevor (06:22:55) claims that Mears came to ‘appreciate’ by 2005 that he was wrong for claiming in his 2002 paper that the satellite error he was studying was to aliasing of the diurnal cycle. How did Trevor come to that conclusion? The word aliasing didn’t appear in a 2005 Mears paper on the subject. Hardly a convincing argument but apparently good enough for Trevor.

    Trevor is wrong of course since Mears describes the problem as one of diurnal aliasing once again in a 2007 paper (see Tom W (09:56:15)), a reference Trevor apparently want to continue to pretend doesn’t exist.

    I’m done with this silly ‘exchange’.

  174. Tom:

    You got me there, Tom. I made a mistake. Apparently, Mears, like you, still hasn’t learned the definition of “aliasing”. Mea culpa, buddy. There! You finally proved me wrong on something. But, for the record, I hedged a little on that. I didn’t exactly say that Mears had figured it out, I said that I thought it was a safe bet that he had figured it out. Moreover, it’s not just that Mears didn’t use the term in “a 2005 paper”. The 2005 paper was about exactly the same thing (error in tropospheric temperature measurement due to satellite drift), yet he did not use the term “alias” in describing this error. But yeah, I was guilty of assuming that Mears was capable of discovering his own error. My bad.

    Of course you’re done with this “silly exchange”. You’ve lost and you know it. The one argument of mine that you can find to nitpick (my use of the term “bias” over your “alias”), turns out you don’t even know what you’re talking about (and, no, neither does your hero Mears). And you won’t even touch the much more important issue I’ve brought up, regarding whether adjustments for stratospheric cooling are even appropriate.

    Regards,
    Trevor

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