CO2 Optical Illusion

By Steve Goddard

People see what they want or expect to see. A great example is in today’s NASA Earth Observatory image of the day article.

A heat wave scorched the eastern United States in early July 2010, straining power grids, slowing transit, forcing nursing homes to evacuate, and prompting East Coast residents to shelter in “cooling centers,” according to news reports. Temperatures topped 105 degrees Fahrenheit (41 degrees Celsius) in Baltimore for two consecutive days. The heat wave was a global phenomenon. Beijing also experienced near-record heat, and temperatures soared to 122 degrees Fahrenheit (50 degrees Celsius) in Kuwait. This global map shows temperature anomalies for July 4–11, 2010, compared to temperatures for the same dates from 2000 to 2008. The anomalies are based on land surface temperatures observed by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite. Areas with above-average temperatures appear in red and orange, and areas with below-average temperatures appear in shades of blue. Oceans, lakes, and areas with insufficient data (usually because of persistent clouds) appear in gray.

The author missed mentioning the fact that almost all of Mexico and Australia were far below normal. The author missed the fact that much of north and equatorial Africa was below normal, as was much of Asia and eastern Europe.

To quantify this, I did a pixel count on their high resolution image.

It turns out that 5% more pixels were below normal than were above normal. The animation below makes this easier to visualize. Red is above average temperatures, blue is below average temperatures, and white represents average temperatures.

Below are close up animations

This is not a perfect equal area projection – so the pixel count method is not 100% accurate. However, it is clear that NASA claims of a global heat wave are incorrect. Some places were hot, other places (like where I live) were cold.

The author noted that it is hot in Kuwait in July? What are the chances of that?

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120 thoughts on “CO2 Optical Illusion

  1. WTG Steve! That’s funny to turn their own maps used for hyperbole into maps of reason and rationale. Of course, we know the response will be “but the blue areas were only moderately cool while the red areas were really, super, tremendously hot!”

  2. I just watched the global evening national news (Canada). The anchor was selling the world is melting right off of the Nasa press release. I don’t suppose the objective researched story exists anywhere any more…

  3. Glen Shevlin says:
    July 16, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    “…… I don’t suppose the objective researched story exists anywhere any more…”

    Objective researched stories? What is this that you speak of?

  4. Maybe the Islamic world buys the crap from NASA.
    We certainly don’t.

    Thanks for a job well done.

  5. Hey Steve; I don’t see the ice anywhere; what happened to that ?

    I sure do like your blink comparator imagery. It’s amazing what the eye can perceive in a flash; when presented in a useful way.

    And nice that you have access to the raw pixels to play with.

    Stories about the Gulf War; and Iraq, talked of Coalition troops out in all their gear with Temperatures as high as 134 F; which I take to be in shade air Temperatures; what’s the chance of that in July. And Vostok, could be pushing -90 C or thereabouts at exactly the same time.

    George

  6. NOAA has a narrative they are expected to support. I expect this administration to do everything within their power to get passage of watered down version of cap and trade before the August recess. Then they will come back in November to pass the full version during the lame duck session. Until then expect nothing but alarm from NOAA.

  7. A heat wave scorched the eastern United States in early July 2010, straining power grids

    You know, I do wonder how much of the “record summer highs” in cities in summer is due to air conditioning discharges.

  8. NASA shows Australia as colder than a witch’s pips…. and NOAA says they’re frying! I sure feel real good about funding these fine public servants in their pursuit of scientific truths! Makes one proud to be a US tax paying citizen, it does!!!

    //sarcasm off

  9. Be afraid, very afraid. The heat in D.C. is unpresedented. Actually it caused an earth quake. Remember Haiti?
    Rumor has it was caused by Barney Frank slipping in the bathtube. Still checking on the rumour.

  10. Hyperbole warning – as in “figure of speech” – can’t be to careful in these the heydays of “political correctness” .

    Gotta love it when someone uses their opponents own guns on them :). WTG!

  11. I love the blinkometers, but in this case they aren’t even necessary. NASA’s own original map screams ‘normal distribution, mean of zero!!!’ Without counting anything, it’s obvious that the above-befores equal the below-befores.

  12. If anyone from NASA is reading this (hah, of course they are!) can NASA please rotate the Earth a bit to the east so that New Zealand shows?
    In a recent article that I’ve lost track of, NZ has the highest proportion of sceptics per population of any country, and should not be ignored. We’ve also had record low temperatures here. Thank you so much!

  13. I don’t have access to the news report because I didn’t buy the paper and can’t find it online, but The Star (the supermarket tabloid) reports that in the future, Earth will be so hot that humanity will have evolved wings to keep from touching the surface.

    I think The Star has some real climatologists on board.

  14. I grew up in awe of NASA and what they could accomplish. Man, the current crop of activists that have taken over are sure trying every trick in the book to trade in on the great reputation earned by their wonderful scientist and engineer predecessors. Just about reached the credibility limit by now, though, I would think. What a tough job some future guys will have trying to restore the organization’s standing – probably better to just disestablish the place and start over with new names and teams. Quite sad, really, but it seems to be happening to a lot of previously great institutions. Thanks, Gramsci.

  15. Objective researched stories? What is this that you speak of?

    or to be even more pedantic – “What is this of which you speak?”

    and

    it’s really hot in Kuwait in July – sheesh – who’d a thunk it?

  16. Anybody else notice the DMI polar temp graph this week – looks like it might dip down below freezing again in July….but NOAA has arctic as warm,

  17. Frank Lee MeiDere says:
    July 16, 2010 at 5:18 pm
    “I don’t have access to the news report because I didn’t buy the paper and can’t find it online, but The Star (the supermarket tabloid) reports that in the future, Earth will be so hot that humanity will have evolved wings to keep from touching the surface. ”

    Obviously a reference to the Homo Vespertilio :

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

  18. Poor Judd is dead
    A candle lights his head
    He’s lyin’ there so peaceful and serene.
    So long, NASA, it was great while it lasted.
    I’ve been a bit snippy about Eurotrash questioning the future of NASA. Guess I’m done with that.

  19. You are brilliant. Thanks for this illiminating look at the map and maps. Often people say to me that it sure is hot today. And I say to them, “Are you aware that you live in Kuwait [actual name withheld]?”

  20. This is the same image you can get at the Nasa earth observatory website (click on 8 day anomaly for July 4th to July 11th) at:

    http://neo.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/Search.html?group=67

    One can also download the temp anomalies from this image in 1.5 degree blocks in a CSV for Excel format.

    The average anomaly in the map is -0.03C (versus the 2000-2008 baseline) so it was not scorching hot – it was just below average for the relevant time period.

  21. Spam says:
    July 16, 2010 at 4:42 pm
    “”A heat wave scorched the eastern United States in early July 2010, straining power grids”

    You know, I do wonder how much of the “record summer highs” in cities in summer is due to air conditioning discharges.”

    AHA!! The modelers should forget about GHGs. You have found the holy grail of climate science; the missing feedback mechanism!

    Good ol’ summer temps
    == turn on air
    Temps go higher from AC exhaust
    == turn up air
    Temps go higher yet from more AC exhaust
    == crank up the aire some more
    etc.,
    == etc.

    Pretty soon you have runaway AGW.

  22. Steve states: “The author missed mentioning the fact that almost all of Mexico and Australia were far below normal. The author missed the fact that much of north and equatorial Africa was below normal, as was much of Asia and eastern Europe.”

    Yet the article clearly states: “…temperatures are below-normal for a large part of North America and parts of Eurasia.”

    Steve said: “People see what they want or expect to see.”

    Sure got that right.

  23. Mann! it is absolute freezing here in South America LOL (so far -15C anomaly) BTW nothing out of the ordinary for “climate”

  24. “A heat wave scorched the eastern United States in early July 2010, straining power grids, slowing transit, forcing nursing homes to evacuate, and prompting East Coast residents to shelter in “cooling centers,” according to news reports.”

    You may like it, Joe Bastardi may like it, but I really really hate La Nina because I have to live in the areas affected. Even Forrest Gump knows by now that La Nina correlates to much hotter temperatures on the east coast of the US. And yet, NOAA and NASA seem to have forgotten weather 101.

    All of this reminds of me an episode of the Simpsons I saw today. The episode is Much Apu About Nothing. In the episode, 1 bear roams the neighborhood and an angry mob then demands a bear patrol, which they get even though this is the only bear ever seen in the neighborhood. Homer is then delighted the bear patrol is working. Here is the relevant part:

    Homer: Not a bear in sight. The Bear Patrol must be working like a charm.
    Lisa: That’s spacious reasoning, Dad.
    Homer: Thank you, dear.
    Lisa: By your logic I could claim that this rock keeps tigers away.
    Homer: Oh, how does it work?
    Lisa: It doesn’t work. It’s just a stupid rock. But I don’t see any tigers around, do you?
    Homer: Lisa, I want to buy your rock.

    Homer thought correlation was causation. There were no tigers and there is a rock in the yard. Therefore, the rock keeps away tigers. But Lisa was right, that is spacious reasoning. The same with CO2 and that map. CO2 is higher and temperatures are higher. Therefore, more CO2 causes higher temperatures. That logic is just as asinine and spacious. And yet people want to buy the “rock” that NASA, NOAA, the UN, East Anglia, Michael Mann, James Hansen, Gavin Schmidt, et al. is selling. How appropriate that the Simpsons parody the fallacy of such logic a long time ago. That episode was aired in 1996.

    It is simply amazing that basic meteorology is thrown out the window for an agenda.

  25. Jaymam: “NZ has the highest proportion of sceptics per population of any country”

    Hmmm, I would be interested to see the source for that information. If it’s true, how did we get the most rigorous CO2 tax in the world? If it’s true, why did we only get 120 people to a recent march to parliament to protest against said CO2 tax?

  26. Crap, now I understand why the three stage model rocket weren’t designed nor built by NASA. And why it took some high school students or what ever with a couple of hundred bucks to take actual new pictures of earth in a new way from space, almost anyway, like add at three stage non-nasa rocket to the whole weather balloon package and maybe a low orbit will be the next best thing before NASA gets all mental over peoples R/C satellite “Big Gun” battle. :p

  27. Yuba Yollabolly says:
    July 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm
    “[...]
    Yet the article clearly states: “…temperatures are below-normal for a large part of North America and parts of Eurasia.”

    Steve said: “People see what they want or expect to see.”

    Sure got that right.”

    Good find. One sentence in the entire wall of text mentioning below normal temps, the rest talking about scorching heatwaves. Difficult to find, yet now NASA can say they’re objective. So we can say in the map there’s 55% below normal , in the text we have about 5% mentioning of below-normal temperatures. They know how to spin it.

  28. S. Africa is shown as above normal, yet during the World Cup most of the world (outside of NASA) saw and heard how unseasonably cold it was. What’s Up With That?

  29. “Global” temperature would include the 71% of the Earth surface covered by ocean. Nasa’s MODIS (Medium Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) operates on both the Terra and Aqua spacecraft. Since sea surface temperatures are available at the OCDPS, my guess is that we are only seeing part of the story (29%).

  30. I’m concerned that you didn’t address the global water temperatures, especially the apparent significant increase in the Atlantic temps, which have the greatest reaching affect not only in area but in duration. Land temps come and go, but water temps linger on much longer…

  31. “A heat wave scorched the eastern United States in early July 2010, straining power grids,”

    I wonder how a grid using mostly wind power would have been strained.

  32. They may lie all they want. Eventually all the warming doom they are predicting will not take place. Instead the world will wake up will nothing to eat since temperatures will drop. And as the Chinese have shown, these will be one of those triggers for a revolution. They want to impose a Global Government… they will get a Global Revolution.

  33. Wade says:

    Good post and Homer is hilarious, but the pedant in me cannot resist substituting specious for “spacious“.

    Lisa: That’s spacious reasoning, Dad.

    spe·cious
       /ˈspiʃəs/ Show Spelled[spee-shuhs] Show IPA
    –adjective
    1.
    apparently good or right though lacking real merit; superficially pleasing or plausible: specious arguments.
    2.
    pleasing to the eye but deceptive.

  34. this is such an excellent piece, perhaps it could do with a thread of its own:

    17 July: Australian: Amos Aikman: Sorting Bangladeshi disasters from the fact or myth of climate change
    Rising floodwaters and other evironmental problems cannot be simply blamed on the impact of man-made climate change
    Already facing a surfeit of environmental crises, Bangladeshi policy makers have been quick to cry against global warming; environmental groups have sought to raise the spectre of climate migration. On the ground, however, the consequences of climate change are often similar to those of development, overpopulation and natural disasters, and it is hard to tell them apart. …
    What’s more, many problems are complicated by developmental factors, such as embankment building that has produced apparent sea-level rise unrelated to climate change…
    “The first culprit is the embankments, the second is the Farakka dam diversion, the third is climate change. Who contributes how much? That needs to be studied and looked into, it’s not a simple question,” Nishat says. However, even though Bangladeshi researchers are candid about such problems, environmental groups and Western media reports often ignore them…

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/sorting-bangladeshi-disasters-from-the-fact-or-myth-of-climate-change/story-e6frg6z6-1225892653229

  35. Guys: “ImageJ” from the NIH.

    Google it, download it.

    You can analyse pixels quite easily, and you can split RGB images into color components, and if they are of the right type, in terms of the color graph/numerical value, you can retranslate the images into “hard numbers” to be used in a spreadsheet, etc.

    Take you about 10 minutes to download and set up.

    Your tax dollars at work!

    Max

  36. The baseline is the 2000-2008 average. Thus, “cool” means cooler than the average for the warmest decade on record. And “hot” means very hot. “This global map shows temperature anomalies for July 4–11, 2010, compared to temperatures for the same dates from 2000 to 2008.”

    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=44664

    People who do not read often end up confused.

  37. So the reddish pixels have a value of +1 and the blueish pixels have a value of -1 instead of a scale of +12 to +1 and -1 to -12. By doing this you have removed all the weight represented in the original image. Yes, you have displayed the areas that were warm versus cool, but what is the significance of such a display when the weight of the pixels is discarded? I want to know how much hotter are cooler each area was. I can strip the weights myself by seeing all the blue or red pixels as two separate shades.

    This is like having a limit of 8 people on the elevator. It is important whether the 8 people are elementary school students or 8 men from a Largest Men in the World meeting. That’s why the capacity on elevators is written as weight. Who is being weighed makes all the difference.

  38. Though NASA map shows 5% more cold anomalies than hot ones, I wouldn’t believe their data.

    As LightRain correctly mentioned above, everyone knows that South African weather was colder than usual in June, but NASA map shows it was warmer than usual.

    Even when these Big-Brother-Tit-Milkers are forced to tell some of the truth, they lie.

  39. A comment should be made on the one week they are grabbing out of the basket.
    What about the week before, or the week after? My comment comes because it shows in red south of France where my son is, and I know that a bit before they were complaining of having 19C temperatures in the middle of the summer!
    Glad to see they got Greece right.

  40. Mike says:
    July 16, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    The baseline is the 2000-2008 average. Thus, “cool” means cooler than the average for the warmest decade on record. And “hot” means very hot.

    —…—…—

    Propaganda = The “hottest decade ever recorded” is at the top of a whopping 4/10 of ONE degree increase over a record low point in the 20th century between the highs of the 1940 and the 60 year later 2000 high. Gee. Less than 1/2 of one degree.

    The ENTIRE global hype ( Obama’s 1.3 trillion dollar tax) is based on hype about a spotty 1/2 of one degree temp rise. And that rise doesn’t correspond to CO2 increases either.

    hint: We are rising up from a low temperature of about -1.0 between 1600 and 1850. We are coming back up towards a high about 1/3 of a degree higher. Temp’s were warmer in the year 100-200 AD and in the years between 1000-1100.

  41. Jason Miller says:
    July 16, 2010 at 8:21 pm

    The point of SG’s post is that NASA only focused their article on the heated bits of the Earth using hyperbole in order to make it all seem quite extreme. The question you should ask is why didn’t NASA at least balance the article by using the same hyperbole to describe the colder bits of the Earth. Is this a perfect example of an agenda at work here – do you think?

  42. The data for South America is false. In Argentina we are having record cold temperatures. This July is a repetition of the 2007 July when it snowed in Buenos Aires for the first time since 1918. It snowed again yesterday. It even snowed in the province of Santiago del Estero where it has never snowed!

    Today was the coldest day in 10 years in the entire country, in all places. It keeps snowing in Tucumán, Salta and Jujuy, northern provinces close to the boder with Bolivia, north of the Tropic of Capricorn. And not only in the mountains but at low altitudes (300-500 m asl).

    A temperature graph for my nearest city Alta Gracia updated to July 15th:

    AltaGracia-15-JUL-2010

    Any newspaper in Argentina is speaking about this unusual cold weather and the terrible energy crisis it has imposed on the country.

  43. What I always wanted to know what is the point in reaching a “baseline” in temperatures.. And who cares how one week compares to said baseline. One week is weather according to our pals at real climate, and yet this is a press release about global cooking?

    Just to be clear, I think the entire baseline is bogus. Baselines need much more data to even come close to approximate a baseline for temperature data. When climate moves at millenium scales and we have a baseline of 30 years….and we even discuss this?

    I also tend to think, whats the point of having the most biased scientists in the world in charge of NASA temperature charts? Whether intentionally or inadvertantly through observer bias, those temperatures are at best “good enough for Government work” and at worthless.

    Shrug, just things like the NASA press release make me want to rant.

  44. What also is interesting about this article is the last paragraph. Note the first sentence:

    “Heat waves often spark discussions of global warming, but it’s important not to consider a single heat wave evidence of long-term climate change; heat waves can and do occur in any kind of climate. However, climate warming is expected to increase the likelihood of heat waves. Unusually warm temperatures in May and June 2010 continued a long-term trend of warming, especially pronounced in the Arctic.”

    Anyone who was using the east coast heat wave to continue spouting global warming (Michael Mann, Joe Romm, et. al. ) needs to read it.

    But of course, the last two sentences have to give its ‘dig’ to a warming environment. Sure, in a warmer environment, one would expect more ‘heat waves’, as compared to cooler environments ( . . so what, nothing other than the obvious there . . .) .
    Yet although unspoken, one can assume what they believe is causing the warmer environment . . . (oh, and though I haven’t gone back to look at any data, was the arctic really that much warmer in May/June?)

  45. jaymam says:
    July 16, 2010 at 4:59 pm

    I’m a skeptic Kiwi and also ask that Nasa rotates its map to clearly show the record breaking cold weather we’ve been having. But perhaps not because the earlier post at WUWT that saw our country speckled with little red dots seemed to suggest we actually had warmer than usual weather.

    Steve Schapel says:
    July 16, 2010 at 6:51 pm
    I believe part of the reason is because at less than $5 / week ETS ain’t really stripping our wallets yet. And, when it comes into full effect it will demonstrate that modern day Indulgences do work – at least for a while. But hey any tax is a good tax when you are the Guv’mint.

  46. Is that ice I see forming at the pool on the north pole? In our sea lake I would say it was plankton, but would not think so in such a small pool .

  47. I just checked AMSU-A global temperature trend for now compared to last year, it’s 0.21 F cooler this year. So last year must’ve been a scorcher, funny how nobody noticed.

  48. Mike says:
    July 16, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    The baseline is the 2000-2008 average. Thus, “cool” means cooler than the average for the warmest decade on record.

    Ominous signs!! Sarc off.

    We’re talking about 1/10ths of a degree:

  49. This is all very disappointing. I was promised a world that would be 8 degrees warmer. An entire world. Not here or there, but an entire world. Now it is revealed that some places are warmer and some places are colder.

  50. Can government agencies like NASA and NOAA be trusted in recent years? Obviously no. Remember the days when NASA had a glorious reputation?

    Joseph D’Aleo: Eisenhower warned us

  51. I think this story also speaks to what NASA and perhaps many others in society consider to be the world. The east coast of N.A., Western Europe, Middle East , okay that’s all that counts, isn’t it?

  52. Tom in Florida says:
    July 16, 2010 at 7:23 pm

    “A heat wave scorched the eastern United States in early July 2010, straining power grids,”

    “I wonder how a grid using mostly wind power would have been strained.”

    Pretty easy to do. The wind can die down. But, I don’t think it’s mostly wind generated power either.

  53. I thought Climategate was a turning point where the scientists would be more open with public and would explain the uncertainties. Anyone noticed?

    Anyway the obviously cold anomolies are themselves evidence of CAGW, I’m told this is all predicted, but I’ve searched everywhere in the scientific literature and come up with nothing.Yet.

  54. Steve Schapel says: July 16, 2010 at 6:51 pm
    Jaymam: “NZ has the highest proportion of sceptics per population of any country”
    Hmmm, I would be interested to see the source for that information. If it’s true, how did we get the most rigorous CO2 tax in the world? If it’s true, why did we only get 120 people to a recent march to parliament to protest against said CO2 tax?

    Nzers are also the most ‘laid back’ people in the world – Steve if you know anything about us you would realize that we won’t wake up to this until we actually start paying the tax – by then it’s too late. The skepticism extends to believing anything that goes on in parliament is of any moment.
    Doug

  55. I know I’m not the best scientist in the world but…
    looking at the pictures with the correct resolution settings,
    without a fine tooth comb, I would have to say that I see more white and blue than red

    [snip]

    PS congratulations to Mr. Goddard….. not just 1, not just 2, but 3 count em THREE rebuttals of MR. Goddard on Skeptic Science…. You have made it past the 15 minutes of fame into the big leagues MR. Goddard sir. :-)

    Part 1: http://www.skepticalscience.com/Part-One-Why-do-glaciers-lose-ice.html
    Part 2: http://www.skepticalscience.com/Part-2-How-do-we-measure-Antarctic-ice-changes.html
    Part 3: http://www.skepticalscience.com/Part-Three-Response-to-Goddard.html

    All replete with pretty pictures and references.

  56. Steve Schapel
    Google News had an article last month saying “NZ has the highest proportion of sceptics per population of any country”. However a search fails to find it. It’s not important. Most countries had only single figures for sceptics, which of course is wrong.

    NZ has the most rigorous CO2 tax in the world because scientists have lied about the effect of CO2,and NZ’s government have been delighted to introduce an extra tax, saying that the rest of the world insist that we do that or they won’t buy NZ’s unsubsidised and efficiently produced products.

  57. Yuba Yollabolly says:
    July 16, 2010 at 6:21 pm
    Steve states: “The author missed mentioning the fact that almost all of Mexico and Australia were far below normal. The author missed the fact that much of north and equatorial Africa was below normal, as was much of Asia and eastern Europe.”

    Yet the article clearly states: “…temperatures are below-normal for a large part of North America and parts of Eurasia.”

    Er, Does “North America and parts of Eurasia” equate to Mexico? Australia? North Africa? Equatorial Africa?

    Get a grip.

  58. Great job – it went a long way in answering the my question I posted on this.
    Are they using the extrapolation method to compute the polar temps?

    I find it weird that they keep showing a hot Arctic, when in fact (above 80°N) the DMI keeps showing normal, or even slightly below normal temps.

  59. Simon Stanley says:
    July 16, 2010 at 11:29 pm
    This is from todays Daily Telegraph (UK).

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/topics/weather/7895681/Worlds-hottest-year-on-record-expected.html

    …Let’s read the whole thing, which contains some interesting information:

    “For the first six months of the year, 2010 has been warmer than the first half of 1998, the previous record holder, by 0.03 degree Fahrenheit, said Jay Lawrimore, chief of climate analysis at the federal National Climatic Data Center.

    “A period of a El Nino weather pattern is being blamed for the hot temperatures globally…”

    “…However, as cooler temperatures may set in later this year, it remains to be seen whether 2010 will overtake 2005 as the hottest year overall.

    “This year the fact that the El Nino episode has ended and is likely to transition into La Nina, which has a cooling influence on the global average temperature, it’s possible that we will not end up with the warmest year as a whole,” Mr Lawrimore said.”

    So it’s not that interesting a story at all, a few facts amounting to another load of speculation about what might or might not happen this year.

  60. The southern hemispere, the artctic, and south asia was colder than considered normal.
    It’s easy to verify.

    This is going to come back and bite them in the tail.

  61. Wake up Kiwis, you can all be super rich ! All that scrub land can be turned into cash, just leave it as it is and claim the ‘carbon credits’, if Greenpeace can do it and claim U.S.$60,000,000,000 (yep that trillions) for a little of the Amazon, join the club.

  62. This NASA website is full of interesting hyperbole and omissions – these are some from the first half of 2009:

    1: http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/imagerecords/36000/36900/australialsta_tmo_2009025_tn.jpg

    Here we have “Exceptional Australian Heatwave” for the last week of January 2009, yet the map shows greater areas of below normal temperatures than of above normal temperatures.

    2: http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/imagerecords/37000/37466/superior_amo_2009062_tn.jpg

    Here we have a picture of ice on Lake Superior – “a relatively rare blanket of ice” – so obviously no discussion about global warming here.

    3 http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/imagerecords/38000/38284/arctic_min_max_map_tn.jpg

    A comment here: “Antarctic sea ice trends during the satellite era are smaller and more complex than Arctic trends. Through 2008, the total annual Antarctic sea ice extent increased about 1 percent per decade, but the trends were not consistent for all areas or all seasons. The variability in Antarctic sea ice patterns makes it harder for scientists to explain Antarctic sea ice trends and to predict how Southern Hemisphere sea ice may change as greenhouse gases continue to warm the Earth.”

    So here is another inconvenient truth, which does not fit the ‘models’.

    4 http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=38655

    “Heavy Rains Flood Brazil” – I thought the IPCC said that wasn’t supposed to happen.

    5 http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=38419

    2008-2009 winter land suraface temperature anomalies – no comment on global warming for obvious reasons.

    6 http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=38835

    Something to be concerned about, but the final comment is complete unfounded alarmism:

    “These same models predict that the Antarctic ozone layer will recover around 2040. On the other hand, because of the impact of greenhouse gas warming, the ozone layer over the tropics and mid-southern latitudes may not recover for more than a century, and perhaps not ever.”

    Ozone depletion over the ‘tropics and mid-southern latitudes’ has never been an issue, as ozone is being created in every moment of daylight hours by cosmic rays from the Sun. The impact of CFCs here is essentially negligible. Ozone ‘holes’ over the Antarctic are at their maximum at the end of the Southern Hemisphere winter, after many months without cosmic ray bombardment.

    This response is already too long, there are plenty more examples like these – there is a subtle thread of disinformation, exaggeration and omission in much of the NASA stuff on climate.

    Steve has pointed out a classic example of this in his article.

  63. Steve Schapel says:
    July 16, 2010 at 6:51 pm
    Jaymam: “NZ has the highest proportion of sceptics per population of any country”

    Hmmm, I would be interested to see the source for that information.
    It came from the JNAS blacklist http://www.eecg.utoronto.ca/~prall/climate/skeptic_authors_table.html

    If it’s true, how did we get the most rigorous CO2 tax in the world? If it’s true, why did we only get 120 people to a recent march to parliament to protest against said CO2 tax?
    Possibly because it wasn’t well advertised. Compare it to the Bikers against ACC rally at parliament where there were over 7000 motorcycles. It was well advertised on a number of forums throughout New Zealand. Most skeptics didn’t hear about the march until it was over.

  64. The whole story is a political one . The US government under Barack Obama wishes to install cap and trade and increase taxing of their society in order to keep the deficit-ball roling . Apparently they are seeing no other way out of the big financial trouble continueing to hit them . Apparently every governmental institution must contribute to make the public cap and trade ready . The policy-makers are very well aware that time is running against them, you only need to read the formulations used in the climate-gate correspondence to verify this . So every govermental institution is expected to show their support of the leadership . A different tune or opinion will have the consequence that the civil ervants in charge , all paid extremely well for their painting of reality , will loose their jobs and reputations . Whose bread i eat , whose word i speak . Is not it all very simple , Mr. Obama ?

  65. You have twelve months in a year; each one could be the hottest, coldest, wettest or driest for 100 years. That is 48 opportunities for a record breaking month. Then if you add that option to each area, let us say worst flooding in Cumbria or driest conditions in the SE you very quickly come up with hundreds of options for records to be broken. And you can multiply everything by countries, warmest summer in Canada or whatever, and you probably get thousands of opportunities for records to be broken. On top of that you have different methods of measuring temperature and inaccurate records from the past; it all gets very obvious that at least one 100 year record will be broken every month.

    I would be comfortable to rely on satellite measurements of groups of glaciers from different regions of the world over a ten year period. The Himalaya glaciers are both growing and retracting? How about in other areas, is this a general picture of what is happening in many of parts of the world? We need to be given a more rounded picture instead of the constant stories of freak storms and droughts.

    Here in west Wales we had a hard winter, late spring, warm early summer which has turned wet and cold; nothing for the journalists to get alarmed about, not a news story, nobody is taking any notice of what is happening here in West Wales.

  66. It should be mentioned that the reference period is a warm one, 2000-2008, because modis started in 2000. So compared to 1961-1990 there would be more + than -. Those MODIS-images are hardly comparable with real land temperatures.

    March, April, May and June were all the warmest since 1880 in the NCDC time series (land + ocean). Global land average temperature set a clear record in June and and ist still very high these days:

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/?report=global&year=2010&month=6&submitted=Get+Report

    Nevertheless you are right, there are always many areas with very cold conditions.

  67. Almost a third of Argentina was covered in snow yesterday, for the first time in decades. It would be good to find satellite imagery of that.

  68. Brad aka says:

    From your 3rd reference regarding rebuttals at Skeptical Science, an “interested” commenter says:

    “NickD at 01:35 AM on 17 July, 2010
    If I can play a bit of Devil’s Advocate here, and speaking purely as a layperson who has a very basic understanding of most of your posts, I am left with the impression that melting glaciers and ice sheets (specifically Antarctica and Greenland) are not necessarily evidence of global warming, as much of the melt is due to factors generally unrelated to temperatures. Is this accurate?

    I’m trying to understand for myself, but also I am trying to put myself into the shoes of some who might read these posts and be left with the same impression and would subsequently cite your posts to argue that there’s nothing we can do about Greenland and Antarctica melting. You get the idea…”

    Yes we certainly do and we have been getting it for some time now, thank you very much.

  69. @Robert Austin

    re; specious vs. spacious

    You beat me to it! Don’t feel bad. It made me cringe too.

  70. And this is the best they can do after dumping all properly cited thermometers, moving/keeping only a few in urban areas, airports, and the coast, and then “adjusting” the historical data?!? Yes, spacious reasoning, indeed.

  71. Steve,

    I want to see the code! How can I trust your pixel count otherwise?

    Okay, just kidding.

    Thanks for the reply.

    If you, or anyone, knows of some good — open source would be nice — pixel counting software, I’d be interested in knowing about it. I know some image editing programs can do a histogram of the color palette in an image, but that is not quite the same thing as counting pixels (the ones I’ve seen just do percentages).

    Basil

  72. How sad that the agency responsible for putting a man on the moon is reduced to a political pawn producing activist material for the greatest socialist experiment since the Russian Revolution.

  73. The map has 5% more cooler than warmer base on a period(2001-2008) that is 0.5C warmer than average. The map shows anomalies going from -12C to 12C, so 0.5C is about 5% of this range. In conclusion, we could say the map shows the average anomaly is average in comparison to the regional variations. Nothing to be alarmed.

  74. pgosselin says:
    July 17, 2010 at 12:30 am
    Great job – it went a long way in answering the my question I posted on this.
    Are they using the extrapolation method to compute the polar temps?

    I find it weird that they keep showing a hot Arctic, when in fact (above 80°N) the DMI keeps showing normal, or even slightly below normal temps.

    Eduardo Ferreyra says:
    July 16, 2010 at 9:21 pm
    The data for South America is false. In Argentina we are having record cold temperatures. This July is a repetition of the 2007 July when it snowed in Buenos Aires for the first time since 1918. It snowed again yesterday. It even snowed in the province of Santiago del Estero where it has never snowed!

    Today was the coldest day in 10 years in the entire country, in all places. It keeps snowing in Tucumán, Salta and Jujuy, northern provinces close to the boder with Bolivia, north of the Tropic of Capricorn. And not only in the mountains but at low altitudes (300-500 m asl).

    A temperature graph for my nearest city Alta Gracia updated to July 15th:

    AltaGracia-15-JUL-2010

    Any newspaper in Argentina is speaking about this unusual cold weather and the terrible energy crisis it has imposed on the country.

    LightRain says:
    July 16, 2010 at 7:02 pm
    S. Africa is shown as above normal, yet during the World Cup most of the world (outside of NASA) saw and heard how unseasonably cold it was. What’s Up With That?

    I’d love to hear more on these topics. Re: S. Africa, I even heard that part of the bay down there had begun to freeze over during the world cup.

    _MichaelM

  75. SG wrote: “It turns out that 5% more pixels were below normal than were above normal.”

    This is not a meaningful statement useless you know what “normal” means. In the graphic used the baseline was 2000-2008. If instead one used 1960-1990, there would be fewer blue dots and more red dots. If one used 1880-1920 there would be even fewer blue dots. Now the scale on the first graphic is -12 to +12. So, a baseline shift of 1 to 1/2 degree would not make a huge different, but it likely would give more reds dots than blue. Also, the shift is not uniform since some areas have warmed more than others.

    This graphic compares 1999-2008 temps with 1940-1980 temps. How much blue do you see?

    http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:Global_Warming_Map_jpg

    You can pick away at trivialities, but the fact is the earth is warming and this is largely do to us. It is not the end o the world, but it is a serious issue that we ought to be addressing.

  76. A decade from now many of us will look back with incredulity and marvel at how so many people could be so taken in by what is clearly the greatest scientific fraud in history.

    The government mouthpieces generating the global warming hysteria are torturing the data to support pre-ordained “scientific conclusions.” The fact that the AGW hypothesis has been thorough discredited is simply ignored.

    Within the next few years or so, as the earth enters its next period of long-term cooling, any residual claims about impending global warming doom will be greeted with sneers and contempt.

  77. Mike,
    The issue Mr. Goddard was addressing was not about global warming as much as it was about a misinformed author. The problem addressed was whether or not the eastern US heatwave was indeed “a global phenomenon,” as noted by the author. Mr Goddard was proving that that statement was incorrect. I agree that in the big scheme of climate change, an issue like a heat wave is trivial, however, a misinformed public is not.

  78. The thing that jumped out at me first was the cooler temps in Mexico and Texas, mainly that it is SIGNIFICANTLY cooler than normal according to the graphic. Well, during the time period, July 4-11 that area was seeing what was left of Alex move out and another tropical system move in. With all of the showers that were moving through the area because of the very tropical environment, of course it was significantly cooler there.
    What I would be interested to see would be 2 weeks before and the week after analysis to see if that trend continued. My guess is 2 weeks before it was hotter, 1 week before it was cooler (Alex), and the week after it was hotter. Removing such a significant area of cooler would skew the over-all trend back to warmer than normal.

  79. Did we forget to remind them that summer is coming? It’s like “50 First Dates” with these people.
    “OK, it’s going to get hot now, for about three months. But it’s OK, it does that every year at this time, so there’s no need to panic.”

  80. @Joel Hoffman says:
    July 17, 2010 at 10:53 am
    Mike,
    The issue Mr. Goddard was addressing was not about global warming as much as it was about a misinformed author. The problem addressed was whether or not the eastern US heatwave was indeed “a global phenomenon,” as noted by the author. Mr Goddard was proving that that statement was incorrect.
    …………………………………………………………………………………………………….
    There was clearly a global drop in temperature in the second week of July, simultaneously in S.America, S.Africa, Australia and New Zealand, there where very low temp`s, much like the middle of July 2009, and the N.Hemisphere the drop has as expected brought heavy rains in many regions. A week before, most regions were displaying +ve anomalies. Temperatures are now on the rise again in most regions.
    The N.E. USA temp`s is more of a ciculation and high sea temp`s issue;

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/regional_monitoring/us_weekly_tanom.shtml

    My solar based temperature forecast this month was for a warming spurt from around the 2/3rd July, and a drop in the second week, followed by a warming spurt starting aroung the 15th July.

  81. Steve,

    While you’re busy counting pixels on inaccurate maps, I prefer to look at the real data on maps like this:

    http://iridl.ldeo.columbia.edu/maproom/.Global/.Atm_Temp/Persistence.html

    Note: this map of the persistence in the temperature anomaly shows the cold over California and up into the Pacific NW which your map completely misses for some reason. We know that California and the Pacific NW have had a cool late spring and summer, so which map should we trust? Yours, which fails to show it, or the one I posted? And the map I’ve given the link to quite clearly shows the global warmth over the past few months.

    REPLY: Thanks for recognizing that the NASA map is inaccurate – Anthony

  82. R. Gates, if there are three maps, all from NASA, how do we know which one is “more accurate?” Who’s to say that all three aren’t innacurate?

    (Note: Honest questions. I’m not trying to jerk you around.)

  83. Very easy explanation. Steve’s map is from a short term period of a few days in early July. The two maps I gave links to (which are pretty consistent with each other) is from a longer time period (up to 3 months) and shows persistence over that time period (meaning more than just a short term fluxuations, that does not include July.

    Steve is essentially looking at short term weather, as his map covers only a week, versus something longer, and more than that, for him to relate anything at all to CO2 by looking at WEEKLY global temperature map is rediculous. CO2 has grown by 40% over the past three hundred years or so. To look at a weekly temperature chart as any indication of anything related to longer term climate change is akin to talking about a snowstorm in Florida as proof of anything related to climate. But I’ve accused Steve of cherry picking before, and IMO, this is just one more example.

  84. Steve,

    Like so many of your excellent jobs at analysis…I don’t claim they are not accurate as far as they go, but I simply think the title and contextual form you put your analysis into is suspect. You look at what is essentially a short term weather event, and yet I see “CO2″ in the headline to your post. This is just seems a tad bit dishonest to me, no less than looking at a large hurricane and seeing global warming, or snow in Florida and seeing a coming ice age. These are short term fluctations in a larger term climate regime…no less than solar cycles, the PDO, ENSO, and the rest. The longest term forcing in the climate right now is the Milankovitch cycle, followed at by the next longest term cycle (that we currently know about) that is the 40% increase in CO2 since the 1700’s, but to look at a short-term (i.e. weekly, as in the map you used) weather map and say anything at all related to CO2 (pro or skeptical AGW) is misleading.

  85. R. Gates,

    I think we are in perfect agreement. NASA is trying to pass off weather as climate, with a strong hint of CO2 as the culprit. I’m just calling them on their BS.

  86. Excerpt from: R. Gates on July 17, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    …but to look at a short-term (i.e. weekly, as in the map you used) weather map and say anything at all related to CO2 (pro or skeptical AGW) is misleading.

    Better tell NASA:

    Heat waves often spark discussions of global warming, but it’s important not to consider a single heat wave evidence of long-term climate change; heat waves can and do occur in any kind of climate. However, climate warming is expected to increase the likelihood of heat waves. Unusually warm temperatures in May and June 2010 continued a long-term trend of warming, especially pronounced in the Arctic.

    Sure looks to me like saying “anything at all” about global warming aka climate change, which is of course intimately tied to CO2 in the minds of (C)AGW proponents. And I agree NASA’s presentation is misleading. ‘Well we can’t actually say this is due to global warming, that requires it to be a long-term trend, but it was a global event, and the two previous months were unusually warm as well!’ Ugh. Not exactly “just the facts.”

  87. R. Gates, do you agree with the statement included with the map from NASA that says:

    “The heat wave was a global phenomenon.”
    ?

    Indeed that is what the article is about.

  88. Southamerica map & animation totally wrong or biased. There are not any above normal temperatures but the contrary. Can´t believe it!

  89. R. Gates (& Steve in subsequent posts):

    I get your meaning now; maps accurate for the discussion at hand.

    When you wrote that you had another more accurate NASA map and then posted that you had yet another even more accurate NASA map, however Steve was presenting a NASA map… I thought your train had jumped the tracks.

  90. stevengoddard says:
    July 17, 2010 at 3:02 pm
    R. Gates,

    I think we are in perfect agreement. NASA is trying to pass off weather as climate, with a strong hint of CO2 as the culprit. I’m just calling them on their BS.

    __________

    Well, I would just say agreement, and leave off the “perfect”, for now. Perhaps in a few years, one way or another, we’ll reach that perfect agreement mark. :)

  91. Julian in Wales says: (July 17, 2010 at 2:53 am) …nobody is taking any notice of what is happening here in West Wales.

    Well we are now, Julian, thanks to your thought-provoking post. Thank you… nice points.

  92. Neel says:
    July 17, 2010 at 11:45 am
    The thing that jumped out at me first was the cooler temps in Mexico and Texas, mainly that it is SIGNIFICANTLY cooler than normal according to the graphic. Well, during the time period, July 4-11 that area was seeing what was left of Alex move out and another tropical system move in. With all of the showers that were moving through the area because of the very tropical environment, of course it was significantly cooler there.
    What I would be interested to see would be 2 weeks before and the week after analysis to see if that trend continued. My guess is 2 weeks before it was hotter, 1 week before it was cooler (Alex), and the week after it was hotter. Removing such a significant area of cooler would skew the over-all trend back to warmer than normal…

    _____

    Meaning of course, skew it back to climate trends and not weather trends, or said another way, skew it back to something that might be CO2 related…

  93. stevengoddard says:
    July 17, 2010 at 9:46 am
    Mike

    No doubt the warm period 15,000 years ago was also “do to us” – as you so eloquently stated.

    Mr. Goddard,
    What due we need too due two get yu two sea that Global Worming is catastraphous and do to man?
    (just kidding)

  94. R Gates, lets not put words in my mouth. I am more of a “Naturally Occurring Cycle” global warmist than a “it’s all our fault” global warmist. But I also dont want to throw bad science after bad science. There is a lot of bad science coming from the AGW side of the debate, the only thing that will show the truth in the end will be good science.
    In science, nothing is ever “settled.”

  95. Neel says:
    July 18, 2010 at 7:17 am
    R Gates, lets not put words in my mouth. I am more of a “Naturally Occurring Cycle” global warmist than a “it’s all our fault” global warmist. But I also dont want to throw bad science after bad science. There is a lot of bad science coming from the AGW side of the debate, the only thing that will show the truth in the end will be good science.
    In science, nothing is ever “settled.”

    __________________

    No intention of putting words in your mouth, but the logical extension of what you said is to look at a larger data set, and that is exactly what is needed to put the effects of AGW in perspective. Looking at one snowstorm or heat wave, or one week’s data, or one month’s data, or one year’s worth of data is not going to tell you anything about what is happening with the climate, but both sides of the issue love to do this. Climate change is all about context (the larger wave rising or falling with little ripples continuing to rise and fall on top). An honest climate scientist will tell you that the frequency of x, y, or z is likely to increase over time due to AGW, but will never tell you that any specific storm or heat wave or whatever is due to AGW.

  96. Excerpt from: R. Gates on July 18, 2010 at 8:17 am

    An honest climate scientist will tell you that the frequency of x, y, or z is likely to increase over time due to AGW, but will never tell you that any specific storm or heat wave or whatever is due to AGW.

    Nah, an honest climate scientist will tell you what happens with global warming period. Sticking in the “anthropogenic” is assigning blame, the source of the warming is irrelevant. Likewise they will also tell you what happens with global cooling as well.

  97. kirkmyers says:
    July 17, 2010 at 9:24 am

    A decade from now many of us will look back with incredulity and marvel at how so many people could be so taken in by what is clearly the greatest scientific fraud in history.

    The government mouthpieces generating the global warming hysteria are torturing the data to support pre-ordained “scientific conclusions.” The fact that the AGW hypothesis has been thorough discredited is simply ignored.

    Within the next few years or so, as the earth enters its next period of long-term cooling, any residual claims about impending global warming doom will be greeted with sneers and contempt.
    ___________________________________________________________
    If we are unlucky enough to have deaf politicians enact crippling taxes and the “de-development” of the United States advocated by President Obama’s top science adviser, John P. Holdren. Holden also recomnended in the book Ecoscience“A transnational “Planetary Regime” should assume control of the global economy and also dictate the most intimate details of Americans’ lives — using an armed international police force.” http://zombietime.com/john_holdren/

    Those who advocated this insanity may be greeted with more than sneers and contempt just as the French Aristocrats were when unusual cold caused famine and revolution. Extremists have already resorted to sending a bomb to the wife of an oil Ex. why do politicians think the activists they are hoodwinking won’t eventually turn on them when the find out the Utopia they were promised is actually closer to hell than to heaven, they were lied to and the wealthy are getting richer off the backs of the poor?

  98. La Niña is predicted to begin this summer and the maps look like its already in play.

  99. H.R. says:
    July 16, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    Temps go higher yet from more AC exhaust
    == crank up the aire some more
    etc.,
    == etc.

    Pretty soon you have runaway AGW.

    Shouldn’t that be AA-CW? (Anthropogenic Air Conditioning Warming)?

    8)

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