While the Sun’s in a funk, no hint of resumed ocean warming

current Sea Surface Temperature - click for a full sized image

Global SST Update: Still No Sign of Resumed Warming

by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

Here’s the global average sea surface temperature (SST) update from AMSR-E on NASA’s Aqua satellite, updated through yesterday, July 7, 2011:

The anomalies are relative the existing period of record, which is since June 2002.

As can be seen, the SSTs have not quite recovered from the coolness of the recent La Nina.

Something else I track is the ocean cloud water anomalies, also from AMSR-E, which I have calibrated in terms of anomalies in reflected sunlight based upon Aqua CERES data:

Why I watch this is it often predicts future SST behavior. For instance, the circled portion in 2010 shows a period of enhanced reflection of sunlight (thus reduced solar input into the ocean), and this corresponded to strong cooling of SSTs during 2010 as seen in the first graph.

So, the recent new enhancement of cloudiness (smaller circle) suggests a fall of SST in the next month or so. After that, it generally takes another month or so before ocean changes are transferred to the global oceanic atmosphere through enhanced or decreased convective overturning and precipitation.

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

See also this story on the sun: Solar activity report: the sun is still in a funk

About these ads

64 thoughts on “While the Sun’s in a funk, no hint of resumed ocean warming

  1. Not only are ocean temperatures cyclically normal, it appears that large reservoir of stored heat opined by Hansen et al. is completely false and in fact the mid ocean depths are colder than previously measured.

  2. Thanks for the graph of oceanic reflected sunlight. This is the first I remember seeing it (so much data, so little attention span…).

  3. It’s a shame the Aqua dataset is so short, but it’s interesting that we appear to have seen an approximate decrease of solar energy entering the oceans of 1w/m2; if I’ve read that correctly, then it’s a very significant drop in energy entering the oceans.

    What is the believed forcing from CO2 during the 20th century?

  4. Very interesting the cloud one fits in nicely with svensmark’s theory of cosmic ray, if of course cosmic rays are above the recent trends (10-15 years back)

  5. The next step would be to tie the increased reflectance into the PDO going negative. The slope might be the straighter portion of the sine wave over 60 something years that the PDO swings through.

  6. Interesting post as usual from Dr. Spencer. And an Interesting linked assumption in the title of this post…”While the sun’s in funk…”. The assumption being that the quiet period of the sun has had the influence of flattening SST’s? It could be true, or it could be the sun and/or several other factors completely unrelated to the sun.

  7. I don’t understand. It seems like everyone these days is looking at the Sun as the driver of climate on the earth. I have thought that for at least 4 decades; but what is different now? When did even the MET decide to join in the fun? What’s up?

  8. I’ve presented a few posts that show that the satellite-era Sea Surface Temperature anomaly data rises only during significant El Nino events, and between those events the linear trends are flat. A link to my most current post on that subject is titled “Does The Sea Surface Temperature Record Support The Hypothesis Of Anthropogenic Global Warming?”:

    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2011/07/09/does-the-sea-surface-temperature-record-support-the-hypothesis-of-anthropogenic-global-warming/

    The one-word answer to the title question is, No.

  9. Bob Tisdale

    If you see this can you please email me at tonyATclimatereason.com in connection with my recent SST article.

    thanks

    tonyb

  10. Arctic ice is not dependent on SST alone. There too are many processes taking place simultaneously including which direction the currents are moving for example.

    Also, OHC in the Arctic region according to NODC have plummeted. That is a net loss of heat. Even the Catlin group acknowledge a drop in subsurface ocean temps, although appear to be grasping at straws to explain it.

  11. Erik Styles says:
    July 9, 2011 at 2:58 pm

    There is a lot of high pressure at the moment around the Arctic circle, favouring sunny and less cold conditions. Good weather for melting sea ice at this time of year with solar levels at their highest of the year.

  12. SORCE TSI has not been updated since 2 June due to technical problems. Is there any more information about that situation?

  13. The IPCC position is that the sun has nothing to do with global warming or climate change. Therefore, all the wild talk about a quiet sun, little ice ages, ocean cooling etc., and this article is just denier talk. Thank goodness the BBC, the Guardian, the Brit Government, the Australian government, The European Union, Obama and his merry band of Green magicians, (especially California) and their proxies are steaming full speed ahead – it’s Global Warming we MUST prepare for! Everyone knows that. Its settled science. And I’m only living close to a mile above sea level -

  14. huishi says:
    July 9, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    What’s up is that there is a well-monied hypothesis out there that Man is responsible for an Earth-centered Climate, and that well-monied effort has spent the last 2 decades silencing the debate. I too was brought up with the understanding that the Solar System is Sun-centered, and that the Sun is the dominant source of energy … being that it is a star.
    Now the big question here is: Does the Sun have enough variable star in it to overwhelm the local variations?

  15. Bob Barker says:
    July 9, 2011 at 4:14 pm
    SORCE TSI has not been updated since 2 June due to technical problems. Is there any more information about that situation?
    Their website says: Weekly Status reports have been removed to comply with ITAR restrictions.
    In case you wonder what ITAR is: http://www.pmddtc.state.gov/regulations_laws/itar_official.html
    In short: the information is classified [for 'non-US persons']. Now speculate why that would be so…

  16. @ Eric Styles

    If you change the 2007 start date in your Oulu neutron monitor data to, say, 1977 you will see a kind of upside down solar activity chart – neutrons are high when the sun is quiet. You will also notice that, comparatively, the neutron count is still quite high compared with, say, 1991.

  17. @rbateman says:
    July 9, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    What other incremental source of energy does this planet have?

  18. and todays the day jula gillard tells australia on how she is going to save the world from burning up around sydneys time 12 pmand again6 pm on radio and tv .at the same time of her speech it is very cold in sydney and snow around 150 mts on our snowy mountains best snow since1990

  19. correction 150 cm of snow not 150 mts dont worry gillard and the melon heads will save us . god help us australia needs all your help to

  20. AJB says:
    July 9, 2011 at 5:54 pm
    And here is the same thing since 1964. And your point was?
    The Oulu neutron count does not have correct calibration. Other stations do not show that the recent minimum was significantly higher that other minima between odd and even cycles, e.g.

    Look at Hermanus. or Thule: http://www.leif.org/research/thule-cosmic-rays.png
    or Kiel: http://www.leif.org/research/Cosmic-Rays-Kiel-1959-now.png
    or compared to several other stations: http://www.leif.org/research/Cosmic%20Ray%20Count%20for%20Different%20Stations-Oulu.png
    Note how the ratio keeps going up.

  21. Wil says: “The IPCC position is that the sun has nothing to do with global warming or climate change.”

    Well, that is not entirely true, and the way that it is not true is important. The IPCC reports and many AGW proponents have said that the variability within solar cycles, and between solar cycles, has only a miniminal influence on global temperature over on the 1880-2000 period that they usually focus on. However, we are now not talking about normal variability, but about the possibility of something which is extraordinary on this time scale…a Maunder minimum.

    So, it no longer follows that “all the wild talk about a quiet sun, little ice ages, ocean cooling etc., and this article is just denier talk.” No, there is now a way out for the warmists here.

    Sure, we might fancy knocking ‘em off their high perch, and then keep kicking until they stop yabbering, until the body stops movin’. Yeh! But I dont think that will work because the dogma has immense inertia (funding, reputations etc) and the proponents have immense institutional power.

    Instead, we could play a diplomatic game more likely of success. That is, if the evidence grows of a Maunder-like event and a corresponding cooling effect — i.e., the picture starts to emerge more and more in the empirical data as the months go by — then there is a way for them not to loose face, where they can say something like:
    Well, yes, the AGW effect was an urgent problem, but, now that this extraordinary natural event is happened, it’s effect will overwhelm AGW for a century or so.
    And we mumble, Yeh, sure thing, whatever you say mate.
    But the momentum is lost, and the issue dies.

  22. Why don’t the temperatures fall in response to La Ninas? It would seem that if the temps rise in stairstep fashion, that the overall effect is an increase in sst. Is this just the warm PDO? And, should we expect a downward stairstep in response to the cold PDO?

  23. So are we

    (a) very slightly doomed
    (b) moderately doomed
    (c) doomed at a bog-standard level
    (d) very doomed indeed

    ?

  24. Bob Tisdale,

    You are making the (what I believe is a false) assumption that the the level of solar activity has little or no role in driving the ENSO phenomenon that you believe is responsible for ocean warming and cooling.

  25. Would like to see the historical SST trends for the northern oceans say north of 60 degrees. What would this look like for the longest period we have accurate records for?

  26. Leif Svalgaard says:
    July 9, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    Does that include Moscow Neutron Monitor?

    http://cr0.izmiran.rssi.ru/mosc/main.htm

    And this set: http://www.puk.ac.za/fakulteite/natuur/nm_data/data/nmd_e.html
    For an odd/even cycle, this 23/24 that is supposed to be sharply peaked, it has a rather wide base so far. Out of character, and is showing higher levels that increase as one heads closer to the Poles, but not everywhere. I would be looking at the Earth’s magnetic fields for clues.

  27. Some good stuff on the cosmic ray link from Dr. Roy here…

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2011/05/indirect-solar-forcing-of-climate-by-galactic-cosmic-rays-an-observational-estimate/

    “…Finally, I fitted the trend lines to get an estimate of the relative magnitudes of these two sources of forcing: the cosmic ray (indirect) forcing is about 2.8 times that of the solar irradiance (direct) forcing. This means the total (direct + indirect) solar forcing on climate associated with the solar cycle could be 3.8 times that most mainstream climate scientists believe…”

  28. Leif,

    I know that magicjava ( not his real name) ran into the ITAR wall when he tried to get the satillite code ( belly of the beast stuff). Since ITAR is used (in my experience) to control munitions and other defense related information ( code that has to do with weapons, information related to weapons or war fighting ) I’m gunna bet that the information is being delayed due to war fighting considerations. Just a guess

  29. Leif Svalgaard says:
    In short: the information is classified [for 'non-US persons']. Now speculate why that would be so…

    Because the americans now own the sun as well as the moon ? The UN means Universe Next ?

  30. pat says:
    July 9, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    Not only are ocean temperatures cyclically normal, it appears that large reservoir of stored heat opined by Hansen et al. is completely false and in fact the mid ocean depths are colder than previously measured.

    Horror! Stored coolth in the oceans. Is it leaking out?

  31. I know I am probably deluding myself but my eyeball says the cloud curve has a similar shape to the SST curve, except the cloud curve peaks and troughs are after the SST peaks and troughs.

    Thus kind of suggests maybe warm SSTs cause more cloud.

    Anyone like to come up with a transfer function that gives the same apparent phase but has causation reversed?

  32. Ninderthana says: “You are making the (what I believe is a false) assumption that the the level of solar activity has little or no role in driving the ENSO phenomenon that you believe is responsible for ocean warming and cooling.”

    Where in my comment on this thread or in the linked post did I write something that discussed the impacts of the solar cycle on ENSO?

  33. Kum Dollison says:

    July 9, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    “Well, all that said, it seems that, according to the AQUA Satellite it’s now just as danged hot as it was this time last year.

    http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps
    Well just to reiterate Kum: Can anyone shed some light on this, we went through a troposphere temperature fall at the turn of 2011 and now that sems to have been negated witk Kum’s link showing we are as hwar or even warmer than this time last year, We also have the artcic sea ice now looking set to beat the 2007 low and yet we are seeing lower sea temperatures? We’ve also got a slumbering sun spot activity sun and had a few volcanoes pop their corks over the last several years. All of this somehow adds up to tropospheric tempertaure higher than this time last year and that was blamed on el nino. Well now wer’e post el.nino, have low sunspot activity, a negative pdo, volcanoes ect and surely all this should be manifesting surely lower atmospheric temps than we are currently seeing!!!!

    None of it makes sense to the average idiot like me.
    At this rate I’m going to become an ex-sceptic or a sceptical denier

    Lawrence

  34. In short: the information is classified [for 'non-US persons']. Now speculate why that would be so…

    Leif, you gotta be kidding me. I would like to see the order on this from DTRA.

  35. rbateman says:
    July 9, 2011 at 11:45 pm
    Does that include Moscow Neutron Monitor?
    And this set: http://www.puk.ac.za/fakulteite/natuur/nm_data/data/nmd_e.html
    For an odd/even cycle, this 23/24 that is supposed to be sharply peaked, it has a rather wide base so far. Out of character, and is showing higher levels that increase as one heads closer to the Poles, but not everywhere. I would be looking at the Earth’s magnetic fields for clues.

    Yes, I included those. Thule which is almost right at the [magnetic] pole does not show any increase. Now, the shielding is energy dependent and the entry into the heliosphere of very low-energy GCRs was a bit better this minimum. You are correct that the variation of the Earth’s magnetic field is a very important factor and that variation is not the same at every station. For the effect on climate, one should presumably use a global ‘average’ of high-energy GCRs. The ‘peakedness’ is not intrinsic to the GCRs but simply to how long the minimum lasted. A drawn-out minimum makes the peak broader,

    Dennis Wingo says:
    July 10, 2011 at 6:28 am
    “In short: the information is classified [for 'non-US persons']. Now speculate why that would be so…” Leif, you gotta be kidding me. I would like to see the order on this from DTRA.
    Well, perhaps ‘restricted’ is better than ‘classified’. Fact is that someone must have brought in the ITAT requirements recently, because the Weekly Status Report was issued until recently.

  36. Hey! Listen up! LazyTeenager is on to something. What better example of negative feedback than warm water causing more clouds to reduce heat input to the oceans. How about a correlogram, you e-graphicers? Warmists, eat your hearts out!

  37. I disagree with the use of the word “anomaly” in climate discussion. Anomaly implies unusual or different, and what you are actually talking about is normal variation. It may be pointless to try changing the word used since the climate alarmists have hijacked the use of anomaly from the beginning, but leaving it smacks of 1984. Language conditions thought.

  38. In the Inland Pacific NorthWest, we are setting new low daily record temps. Many records go back to the early 1900’s and some even further back. Newly installed sensors are also breaking records. The cold we are experiencing is typical of La Nina. The hot in the South is also typical of La Nina. So a La Nina and a La Nada can bring about both record cold and record hot. It all depends on what the La Nina-loopy jet stream is doing.

    In summary, if you are hot or if you are cold, if you are wet or if you are dry, chalk it up to weather pattern variations known to exist in your area.

  39. Falx says:
    July 10, 2011 at 2:58 pm
    I disagree with the use of the word “anomaly” in climate discussion. Anomaly implies unusual or different
    In climate ‘anomaly’ is the deviation from the 30-year ‘normal’ values. So nothing anomalous or strange. The word does not have any negative connotations.

  40. “The word does not have any negative connotations.”

    They use it precisely because it does have negative connotations even though none are technically intended. Just like all the other words they (climate scientists) cobble from other fields or languages, then pervert simply to either exaggerate the significance (one of those words) of their claims or to enhance the fear associated with their claims.

    Mark

  41. Roy,
    From your data it looks to me like short wave reflectivity is lagging the change in SST. So, as the ocean warms reflectivity increases and the natural thermostat is seen to be working.

    Is the data available to track change in short wave reflectivity by latitude and therefore by hemisphere? I think it desirable to drill down to this level of detail to track disparate trends related to time of year.

    The greatest variability in tropical and global sea surface temperature occurs in January when the global average reaches its minimum and the Earth is closest to the sun. When and where is the variability in short wave reflection greatest? This is particularly of interest where variability occurs over the ocean. My guess is that you will see the greatest variability in the north east Pacific, the north east Atlantic, the Atlantic east of Argentina, south east of Australia and south east of Madagascar. This variability will be tied to variation in surface pressure at higher latitudes in turn related to the strength of the coupled circulation of stratosphere/troposphere over the poles as related to the AO(Arctic Oscillation) and AAO (Antarctic Oscillation) also described as the northern and southern annular modes.

    It would be of interest to compare short wave reflection with precipitable water levels.According to ESRL at http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/cgi-bin/data/timeseries/timeseries1.pl precipitable water is of latter years staging a strong recovery after thirty years of depression. Depressed precipitable water represents a sticky and unresponsive thermostat. So depressed precipitable water would be associated with reduced short wave reflection.

  42. Mark T says:
    July 10, 2011 at 4:32 pm
    “The word does not have any negative connotations.”
    They use it precisely because it does have negative connotations even though none are technically intended.

    No, they don’t. This is accepted technical language and does not have negative connotations. You [and many others] are the one that makes it negative.

  43. Pamela,
    Thanks, and it’s always nice to know who you are talking to and its a real bonus if that person has a proper name.

    I should have mentioned that depressed preicipitable water is also evidence of the absence of the ‘water vapour feedback mechanism’ beloved of greenhouse theory.

    Depressed precipitable water represents a failure of evaporation to keep up with surface warming trends indicating declining cloud cover which reinforces the warming trend. The ‘system condition’ that produced the trend ceased to apply about 2003. The system is now in recovery mode as atmospheric moisture levels increase. Roy’s global oceanic reflected sunlight data confirms the point.

    Since 2003 we have a conjunction of increased CO2 in the atmosphere and increased water vapour in the atmosphere……but the Earth cools, directly contradicting greenhouse theory. The Earth itself demonstrates the physics behind the working of the climate system and also that the parameters change over time.

    What is responsible for the change in the parameters? Why should evaporation lag and then increase? The answer lies in the interaction of the mesosphere and the stratosphere over the poles.

    Is anyone in the IPCC taking any notice of any of this? They can’t think of anything that would cause the warming other than the activities of man. They should look harder. This represents a poverty of the imagination. Nay, it represents incompetence.

    If people continue to suggest that increased CO2 in the atmosphere warms the planet….as does Andrew Bolt in the carbon tax thread there will be uncertainty. The voters are susceptible to scare campaigns. Looking at the Prime Minister of Australia announcing a carbon tax, I see a brave and resolute person acting according to her convictions. It’s very, very sad.

  44. Erl Happ says:
    July 10, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    “Is anyone in the IPCC taking any notice of any of this? They can’t think of anything that would cause the warming other than the activities of man. They should look harder. This represents a poverty of the imagination. Nay, it represents incompetence.”

    Nay, its “the continuation of policy by other means.”

  45. Leif Svalgaard says:
    July 10, 2011 at 7:57 am

    Would a mobile Neutron Monitor be feasible?
    I am made aware that Geiger Counters measure some of the background radiation coming in from space. You cannot buy them or thier kits now that Fukushima went meltdown.

  46. Leif Svalgaard says:
    July 9, 2011 at 5:24 pm
    Bob Barker says:
    July 9, 2011 at 4:14 pm
    SORCE TSI has not been updated since 2 June due to technical problems. Is there any more information about that situation?
    Their website says: Weekly Status reports have been removed to comply with ITAR restrictions.
    In case you wonder what ITAR is: http://www.pmddtc.state.gov/regulations_laws/itar_official.html
    In short: the information is classified [for 'non-US persons']. Now speculate why that would be so…

    Maybe someone upstairs has finally realised the sun is a lot more important to short term climate variation (hence military activity) than you’ve been trying to make us all believe.

    Adrian Scaife of the Met office recently:
    “We now believe that [the solar cycle] accounts for 50 per cent of the variability from year to year”

  47. tallbloke says:
    July 11, 2011 at 5:54 am
    “We now believe that [the solar cycle] accounts for 50 per cent of the variability from year to year”
    And that statement is obviously wrong. Amazing that you can be taken in by such nonsense.

  48. Snake oil will always purchased by at least one person, convinced that the concoction can cure what ails you, even though the science behind the elixer has not caught up to proving its unique curative powers.

  49. Meanwhile, out here on the Left coast, it appears that the Cold Fronts may already be knocking on our door. I say already instead of still, because it appears that the Pacific High has briefly moved into its “Summer” position, however, the long term forecast seems to indicate that it is already under assault from the NNW. If the storm door opens in August, we’ll have the earrrrrrrrrrrliest rainy season everrrrrrrrrrr!

    Unprecedented.

  50. One CWA to the north, they have thundershowers over the high country. One more yet to the north and outright cold advection is prog’ed.

  51. Well sheee-it fahr, cowboys and cowgirls… that could be a graph of July lake level for Lake Travis in Texas. Lake level is highly dependent on ENSO which largely determines our rainfall for any given year. Travis is an artificial lake used for flood control, municipal and agricultural use, hydro generation, and recreation. I live on its shore. By the time July rolls around the effects of the current ENSO cycle become evident in lake level being above or below average.

  52. “”””” Leif Svalgaard says:
    July 10, 2011 at 5:21 pm
    Mark T says:
    July 10, 2011 at 4:32 pm
    “The word does not have any negative connotations.”
    They use it precisely because it does have negative connotations even though none are technically intended.
    No, they don’t. This is accepted technical language and does not have negative connotations. You [and many others] are the one that makes it negative. “””””

    Well in everyday “street” language, “anomaly” of course means something that is out of kilter; at variance with what it is supposed to be; which could have a negative connotation; but not necessarily.

    But when used a a scientific, technical term, which Leif asserts here; then it would have a well understood meaning to those “of ordinary sklill in the art” In other worts it is technical jargon of the climate set, and those in that field know exactly what they mean by it.

    It is not conceptually different from a concept often used in process control situations, uch as in the control room of some chemical processing plant. Monitors could display the absolute values of different process variables such at Temperatures, pressur4es concentrations or the likie..
    Problem is nobody could tell if everything was hunky dorey or not.
    So one would typically display not the variables, but the deviation from the set point, so that a correcvtly running process would be designated by a flat line set of process variations from nominal. The process engineers could immediately tell if something is out of whack, by seeing which look shows a discrepancy from nominal. “Control by exception” in a sense.
    Anomalies are simply that; current variances from some established or expected level.
    I’m sure the precise meaning as used in climatology, is written down somewhere; but it need not have any negative connotation, even though the street use of the same word might have.

    As to using “Geiger” counters to monitor neutrons; good luck on that.

    Sub critical(proportional) gas counters have been used as neutron detectors; but usually have such low detection efficiency, since they normally operate by the detection of a “knock-on” proton, by the charged particle track it leaves.

    Geiger counters are non-linear regenerative detectors, that operate in a yes -no detection mode, and give no account of the particle energy; and are more suitable for charged particle detectors. They of course can detect gamma rays, as a result of electronor positron emission events.

    I once built a “tissue equivalent” neutron monitor, which was a proportional gas counter that contained organic materials so that it reacted in a way proportional to expected tissue damage, as a function of neutron energy. it was quite good for anything from thermal neutrons, up to the 14 MeV range, which you can get from deuteron-deuteron collisions.

  53. Leif Svalgaard says:
    July 11, 2011 at 6:16 am
    tallbloke says:
    July 11, 2011 at 5:54 am
    “We now believe that [the solar cycle] accounts for 50 per cent of the variability from year to year”

    And that statement is obviously wrong. Amazing that you can be taken in by such nonsense.

    I’d like to hear Adrian Scaife enlarge on the statement before I decided what to make of his thinking.

    I’m a bit astonished that no-one seems to be concerned that the most important climate metric is now classified information. What’s your thinking on the matter Leif?

  54. FYI – NWS Monterey CWA:

    MODELS HAVE BEEN CONSISTENT WITH BRINGING AN EMBEDDED SHORTWAVE TROUGH THROUGH THE REGION TOMORROW. AS A RESULT…850 MB TEMPS ARE FORECAST TO DROP CLOSE TO 10-11C (IMPRESSIVE FOR JULY).

Comments are closed.