UAH global temperature – holding steady in November

UAH Global Temperature Update for Nov. 2011: +0.12 deg. C

By Dr. Roy Spencer

The global average lower tropospheric temperature anomaly for November, 2011 remained about the same as last month, at +0.12 deg. C (click on the image for the full-size version):

The 3rd order polynomial fit to the data (courtesy of Excel) is for entertainment purposes only, and should not be construed as having any predictive value whatsoever.

Here are this year’s monthly stats:

YR MON GLOBAL NH SH TROPICS
2011 1 -0.010 -0.055 0.036 -0.372
2011 2 -0.020 -0.042 0.002 -0.348
2011 3 -0.101 -0.073 -0.128 -0.342
2011 4 +0.117 +0.195 +0.039 -0.229
2011 5 +0.133 +0.145 +0.121 -0.043
2011 6 +0.315 +0.379 +0.250 +0.233
2011 7 +0.374 +0.344 +0.404 +0.204
2011 8 +0.327 +0.321 +0.332 +0.155
2011 9 +0.289 +0.304 +0.274 +0.178
2011 10 +0.116 +0.169 +0.062 -0.054
2011 11 +0.123 +0.075 +0.170 +0.024

Since last month I predicted another temperature fall for November, which did not occur, I will admit that I should have followed my own advice: don’t try predicting the future based upon the daily temperature updates posted at the Discover website.

FYI, I’m making progress on the Version 6 of the global temperature dataset, and it looks like the new diurnal drift correction method is working.

[Reminder: Since AMSR-E failed in early October, there will be no more sea surface temperature updates from that instrument.]

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46 thoughts on “UAH global temperature – holding steady in November

  1. What happened to that “Super La Nina” we were supposed to see making temperatures plummet? I was expecting a large drop for November.

  2. “The 3rd order polynomial fit to the data (courtesy of Excel) is for entertainment purposes only, and should not be construed as having any predictive value whatsoever.”

    But I can’t help hoping that we’re heading for a half-degree of cooling, to the great discomfiture of the Global Warming brigade.

  3. Thanks, Dr. Spencer — I had to laugh at your comment about Excel’s 3rd order polynomial.
    And, to my eye, a 1st order polynomial would show a constant warming… ;-)

  4. Thanks for the update Doc. I have to chuckle because I had predicted the same. I’m always thrown into a state of consternation when you and RSS diverge. They showed a drop of 0.056°

  5. Jim Cripwell –
    Thanks, I thought we were supposed to be in one already, and that it was a partial cause of the drop over the last few months. What did cause the steep drop over the last few months?

  6. Not to worry. Pelosi has assured us that the combustion of Methane does not produce Carbon Dioxide.

    Perhaps someone should apprise Algore of the immediate danger of the Arctic Ocean bursting into flame which would melt the Aortic Ice and cause an uncontrollable and disastrous rise in sea level.

    I see the need for another government mandate: Ingest a Beano tablet before each meal.
    ——————————————————————————————
    Giant plumes of methane bubbling to surface of Arctic Ocean

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/sideshow/giant-plumes-methane-bubbling-surface-arctic-ocean-163804179.html

    Russian scientists have discovered hundreds of plumes of methane gas, some 1,000 meters in diameter, bubbling to the surface of the Arctic Ocean. Scientists are concerned that as the Arctic Shelf recedes, the unprecedented levels of gas released could greatly accelerate global climate change

  7. Ed Scott says:
    December 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm
    Perhaps someone should apprise Algore of the immediate danger of the Arctic Ocean bursting into flame which would melt the Aortic Ice and cause an uncontrollable and disastrous rise in sea level.

    “The Aortic Ice”. Wonderful typo.

    If the Aortic ice melts we all gonna drown.

  8. So those plumes of methane is that something new or only just discovered, not explained very well. If natural nothing new here, funding goes poof.

  9. Dr Spencer

    Thanks for posting the data.

    As DR (see December 15, 2011 at 11:57 am) and suyts (see December 15, 2011 at 12:04 pm) observe the RSS data showed a drop of some 0.056° such that there is quite some divergence. Obviously this is just 1 months of data but do you have any explanation for this duvergence?

    I would appreciate your views.

  10. I must admit I expected November to be lower especially in the SH and the Tropics. There is a medium strength La Nina refusing to leave.

    I’d like to know how the global figure is arrived at. Is it a weighted average of the 3 hemispheres (NH SH TRP)?

  11. Not sure it is to do with a super La Nina, but the west coast of Australia has been experiencing a radical shift in rainfall patterns this year, suggesting something (very) unusual is happening.

  12. Looking at the RSS data, the lower stratosphere has been steady since ~1995. Isn’t an increased greenhouse effect meant to lower stratosphere temps?

  13. I must also confess to being totally baffled by the latest number. If one just compares November 2007 to November 2011 on ch05, it is clear that 2011 is a fair bit lower than 2007. Comparing the RSS for these two months, it went DOWN from 0.126 in 2007 to 0.033 in 2011. However with UAH, it went UP from 0.06 to 0.12. That is a difference of about 0.15. To put this into some sort of perspective, the difference in the Hadcrut3 data set between the 2nd warmest (0.482) and 12th warmest (0.352) is only 0.13. WUWT?

  14. “Ed Scott says:
    December 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm
    Russian scientists have discovered hundreds of plumes of methane gas, some 1,000 meters in diameter, bubbling to the surface of the Arctic Ocean.”

    There has been speculation that this sort of thing may have been responsible for sinking ships in the Bermuda triangle.

  15. I posted the following comment on Dr. Spencer’s blog…
    One interesting item… if you plot the 12-month running means for UAH versus RSS since they started in the late 1970’s, the RSS 12-month running mean has *ALWAYS* *ALWAYS* *ALWAYS* been warmer than the corresponding UAH 12-month running mean. But, after 33 years, it looks like that streak is about to be broken next month. Not only the first annual temps RSS-cooler-than-UAH, but also the first ever 12-month running mean RSS-cooler-than-UAH. For the last 8 months (April-to-November) RSS has been cooler than UAH (or UAH has been warmer than RSS).
    The *ONLY* previous times there have been 2 or more consecutive RSS-cooler-than-UAH months was…
    July-September 1980 (3 consecutive months)
    March-June 1985 (4 consecutive months)

    This might conceivably be for real, But I suggest looking into it more deeply. Something seems amiss here.

  16. We suspect that most of the differences between RSS and UAH are due to different treatments of diurnal drift of the satellites. RSS uses a climate model for those adjustments, while we adjust (force) satellites which have orbital drift to match simultaneously operating satellites which do not drift. (John Christy might have additional views on this, but he is in the hospital with a blood clot in his pulmonary artery. He’s doing better now, and should be released in a couple days.)

    This is why we are working hard on the new diurnal drift adjustments. We want our adjustments to be the best possible, and based upon observational data rather than on climate models.

  17. Urederra says:
    December 15, 2011 at 1:55 pm
    Ed Scott says:
    December 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm
    Perhaps someone should apprise Algore of the immediate danger of the Arctic Ocean bursting into flame which would melt the Aortic Ice and cause an uncontrollable and disastrous rise in sea level.

    “The Aortic Ice”. Wonderful typo.

    If the Aortic ice melts we all gonna drown.

    ——————————————————————————————

    My spell checker seems to work well. There seems to be an occasional glitch in the context checker.

    Arctic ice melting could said to be loosely (very) analogous to aortic bleeding.

  18. For the many posts above that are creating strawman arguments about the La Nina …

    … first, the current La Nina is a very weak event. It is only going to get to around -1.25C in the next few weeks versus a Super La Nina event which must be below -2.5C (and there has not actually been a Super La Nina event in the record EVER to date).

    … the 3 month lag in the temperature response to a La Nina means that November temperatures are still responding to the August La Nina values which were only -0.64C.

    … Temperatures will reach a low point around March, 2012 when the full impact of the La Nina and the negative AMO will be felt.

    The UAH numbers will get into the negatives in short order.

  19. Ed Scott says:
    December 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    “Russian scientists have discovered hundreds of plumes of methane gas, some 1,000 meters in diameter, bubbling to the surface of the Arctic Ocean. Scientists are concerned that as the Arctic Shelf recedes, the unprecedented levels of gas released could greatly accelerate global climate change”

    Following the links in the story you linked to it seems the Russians are ascribing these methane “fountains” to a decline in the “East Siberian Arctic Shelf”.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/shock-as-retreat-of-arctic-sea-ice-releases-deadly-greenhouse-gas-6276134.html

    But as I recall the “East Siberian Arctic Shelf” has, except for a handful of occasions, disappeared in each of the melt seasons since the satellite records began. The retreat is certainly greater in recent years, but what evidence exists suggests there has been open water in these areas for about as long, and perhaps longer, than we have been paying attention.

    A recent work on this topic, produced by folks who are fairly obviously not AGW skeptics, notes the potential problems of melting methane hydrates on the seafloor, but even they admit it is unlikely to have much influence on the climate.

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2011/2011GL047222.shtml

    Rising Arctic Ocean temperatures cause gas hydrate destabilization and ocean acidification

    Abstract

    Vast amounts of methane hydrates are potentially stored in sediments along the continental margins, owing their stability to low temperature – high pressure conditions. Global warming could destabilize these hydrates and cause a release of methane (CH 4) into the water column and possibly the atmosphere. Since the Arctic has and will be warmed considerably, Arctic bottom water temperatures and their future evolution projected by a climate model were analyzed. The resulting warming is spatially inhomogeneous, with the strongest impact on shallow regions affected by Atlantic inflow. Within the next 100 years, the warming affects 25% of shallow and mid-depth regions containing methane hydrates. Release of methane from melting hydrates in these areas could enhance ocean acidification and oxygen depletion in the water column. The impact of methane release on global warming, however, would not be significant within the considered time span.

  20. Ed Scott says:
    December 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm
    ————————————

    Sorry to burst your Methane bubble, but Methane concentrations in the atmosphere have stabilized or will stabilize very soon (probably because the oil and natural gas industry are no longer simply releasing it to the atmosphere as they once were – and it will stabilize at a lower level than the theory predicted just 10 years ago for example – the theory was always based on Methane stabilizing since it has a short lifetime).

    Barrow Alaska which is the bellweather Methane monitoring station on the planet since its trends lead the world.

    Global since 1981.

    Please check out the factual information before posting scary stories from now on.

  21. Dale says:
    December 15, 2011 at 2:36 pm
    Looking at the RSS data, the lower stratosphere has been steady since ~1995. Isn’t an increased greenhouse effect meant to lower stratosphere temps?

    Yes but the lower stratosphere is dominated by ozone which has been going down, the upper stratosphere is dominated by CO2 which is where the temps are decreasing.

    Check out ‘Clough and Iacono’.

  22. Another thrilling installment! I can’t wait for next month’s! And that polynomial fit is so entertaining as well. Really, we are spoiled.

  23. Bill Illis says:
    December 15, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    … first, the current La Nina is a very weak event. It is only going to get to around -1.25C in the next few weeks versus a Super La Nina event which must be below -2.5C (and there has not actually been a Super La Nina event in the record EVER to date).

    Speaking for myself only, I expressed surprise at the fact that November 2011 didn’t pan out a little cooler than October 2011.
    So the comparison between this La Nina and a super La Nina is irrelevant.
    The relevant comparison would be the effects of this La Nina in October to it’s effects in November (or making allowances for the 7 month lag, March 2011 compared to April 2011)

    The former says November should have been cooler. The latter indicates November should have been slightly warmer.

  24. Ed Scott says: “…Russian scientists have discovered hundreds of plumes of methane gas, some 1,000 meters in diameter, bubbling to the surface of the Arctic Ocean. Scientists are concerned that as the Arctic Shelf recedes, the unprecedented levels of gas released could greatly accelerate global climate change.”

    Methane is constantly bubbling up from offshore vents and has been doing so for thousands of years. One such vent exists about two miles off Santa Barbara:

    In 1982, the innovative Seep Containment Project was developed by ARCO, Mobil, and several other partners to capture the free-flowing gas off Coal Oil Point. Two 50-foot high steel pyramids were positioned on the ocean floor over this seep. These giant tent structures are used to capture escaping oil and gas from the ocean bottom. Weighing in at a massive 350 tons each and measuring 100 feet on each side, they cover one of the seeps’ major vent areas.

    …The steel pyramids have successfully captured natural gas before it rises to the surface. The gas …was initially …an amount roughly equal to the hydrocarbon emissions of more than 35,000 cars driving in and around Santa Barbara each day.

    http://www.venocoinc.com/natural_seeps.html

  25. Alan Statham says:

    “Another thrilling installment! I can’t wait for next month’s!”

    You’ll get it here. And don’t worry about the polynomial fit. Just watch the direction.

    BTW, where’s that runaway global warming? Still hiding out somewhere?

  26. There is a consistent (constantly inconsistent?) variation of +/- 0.2 degree month-to-month variation of global temperature as measured by satellite since records began in 1979.

    Dr Spencer: Assume you can specifically calculate this variation and confirm its presence at the present date under actual measurements, does this mean that ANY and EVERYproxy temperature calculation by any proxy at any time in the past must be presented within a comparable temperature “variation” band?

    That is, if “real measured global temperatures” swing by +/- 0.20 degrees every month of every year, then EVERY past proxy of temperatures by any method or any process at any year (or month) in the past MUST begin with a recognition of an irregular “global” irregularity of the temperature that the proxy is supposedly measuring.

    True?

    If so, then every proxy study of past temperatures cannot derive any conclusion about past temperature values unless that study detects (determines ?) a variation greater than 0.2 (plus 1,2, or 3 std deviations of ??? amounts) a change from the baseline temperature.

  27. To TheFlyingOrc. Sorry, I have no idea what causes the ups and downs of temperatures. Except that when we have an El Nino temperatures seem to be high, and when we have a La Nina temperatures seem to be low. But I am sure there are all sorts of other things going on.

  28. “Phil. says:
    December 15, 2011 at 4:54 pm
    Dale says:
    December 15, 2011 at 2:36 pm
    Looking at the RSS data, the lower stratosphere has been steady since ~1995. Isn’t an increased greenhouse effect meant to lower stratosphere temps?

    Yes but the lower stratosphere is dominated by ozone which has been going down, the upper stratosphere is dominated by CO2 which is where the temps are decreasing.”

    Sorry Phil I’m not sure about that. There’s plenty of data showing all four stratosphere layers have been steady, not just the lower.

    A follow up question, if ozone was decreasing, temps in the stratosphere would also drop. So if you’re right and ozone is decreasing, that would mean to maintain a steady temperature series in the lower stratosphere the greenhouse effect element needs to be opposite. Does that mean the greenhouse effect is lessening to allow lower stratospheric temps to increase the same amount as decreased ozone is reducing it?

  29. I never put much into this La Niña being stronger than last year. The SOI last winter was one of the highest ever recorded for the winter season. Only 1917/18 and 1955/56 edged it out. Most of the time when you have a 2-winter La Niña, the 2nd year is weaker than the first. 2nd consecutive La Niña winters since 1950 (based on MEI) include 1950/51, 1962/63, 1971/72, 2008/09. All of those were weaker than the La Niña of the preceding winter. Now there is uncertainty because history can always take a different course. And if next winter turns into a La Niña as well, that could mean a stronger or weaker La Niña than last year for the remainder of this winter… but we won’t know until it’s over. The three cases of 3 consecutive winters of La Niña since 1950 are: 1954/55-1956/57, 1973/74-1975/76, and 1998/99-2000/01. In the first and last cases, the 2nd year was the strongest of the three with the third year the weakest. In the 70s case, the 2nd year was the weakest of the 3 with the 1st year the strongest. As far as solar influence.. it’s hard to say. The 50s event began right after the solar minimum and the 70s event was right around the solar minimum as well. The late 90s event centered around the solar maximum (March 2000). But it really could go in either direction. In any case, 2012/13, using past statistics and analogs, is very unlikely to be an ENSO neutral winter. It will almost certainly be either an El Niño winter or a 3rd La Niña winter, with chances about equal among those two.

  30. Pardon me asking here, but what do we think is going on with the sunspot count? Down to the 40s. Is this just the normal volatility expected within the predicted cycle, or is it becoming unusual?

  31. So regarding the methane hydrates, from my understanding they are from a source that are in a geological time dependent system that is measured in years in the million.
    If we are to worry about the Methanes ejected from the sediments in the near shore where temperatures are supposedly changing and the reason for these ejections. Why would they not have been ejected in the many warming spells in the past. There is absolutely no contention that it has been both warmer and colder on the near past, geologically speaking.

    Do you as I do get the feeling that this is just a further bout of needless hysteria. Let’s all get a life and stop wanting to feel guilty for being good at adaption and environmental utilisation.

  32. Wow Roy, that’s serious. Tell John I hope his recover is swift and complete. I’m sure the same is from other here at wuwt.

  33. Bill Illis says:
    December 15, 2011 at 4:25 pm
    “Please check out the factual information before posting scary stories from now on.

    Now wait a minute! I’ve got popcorn on.

  34. “The 3rd order polynomial fit to the data (courtesy of Excel)”
    Dr Spencer! I feel sure a nice person like you has sent an explanation to the CRU. Some people there seem to have trouble with Excel!

  35. Presumably the CH4 is natural in origin? If so, isn’t it ‘Carbon Neutral’ (in other words, non-taxable)?

  36. “BTW, where’s that runaway global warming? Still hiding out somewhere?” – Smokey, come out from under the table. You seem to have a morbid fear of some fictional monster.

  37. UAH Global Temperature Update for Nov. 2011: +0.12 deg. C

    By Dr. Roy Spencer

    The global average lower tropospheric temperature anomaly for November, 2011 remained about the same as last month, at +0.12 deg.
    Here are this year’s monthly stats:
    YR MON GLOBAL NH SH TROPICS
    2011 1 -0.010 -0.055 0.036 -0.372
    2011 2 -0.020 -0.042 0.002 -0.348
    2011 3 -0.101 -0.073 -0.128 -0.342
    2011 4 +0.117 +0.195 +0.039 -0.229
    2011 5 +0.133 +0.145 +0.121 -0.043
    2011 6 +0.315 +0.379 +0.250 +0.233
    2011 7 +0.374 +0.344 +0.404 +0.204
    2011 8 +0.327 +0.321 +0.332 +0.155
    2011 9 +0.289 +0.304 +0.274 +0.178
    2011 10 +0.116 +0.169 +0.062 -0.054
    2011 11 +0.123 +0.075 +0.170 +0.024

    Thank you.

    There is a plot of the sea level change for the last 18 years and if one subtracts the linear function of 3.2 mm per year from the data an oscillation becomes visible that is also visible in the UAH data. The main frequency can be analysed as the synodic tide frequency of Mercury/Earth.

    This can be seen in this graph.

    The blue summation curve of relevant solar tide functions in that graph can also be compared with the above UAH data:

    What does it mean if relevant solar tide effects appear time coherent as well in the terrestrial temperatures and in the global sea level oscillation?

    V.

  38. Please don’t forget to update the web-widget both with the new graph and with the November number. It’s still showing October as the one point in a steep descent.

    rgb

  39. Robert Brown says:
    December 16, 2011 at 6:08 am
    Please don’t forget to update the web-widget both with the new graph and with the November number. It’s still showing October as the one point in a steep descent.

    Done in this graph.

    V.

  40. Bill Illis says:
    December 15, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    The UAH numbers will get into the negatives in short order.

    Current AMSU temperatures seem to be confirming this (14000 ft – ground level data is missing):

    http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps+002

    with a sharp downturn in December.

    Also the WUWT ENSO /ocean data shows weakening in the West Pacific surface warmth, and even a cool patch in the Indian ocean.

    On the UNISYS SST map the “true blues” seem to be winning out over the “dirty yellows” (c.f. The Wacky Racers).

  41. Ed Scott says:
    December 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    “Russian scientists have discovered hundreds of plumes of methane gas, some 1,000 meters in diameter, bubbling to the surface of the Arctic Ocean. Scientists are concerned that as the Arctic Shelf recedes, the unprecedented levels of gas released could greatly accelerate global climate change.”

    That’s what happens when the rightfully concerned Expert ipcc Climate Scientists try to deeply sequester the “clouds” produced from the septical products originating from within their own Brick Sh** House, instead of immediately exposing them to the light of real, sceptical science. If they’d been practicing real science, they would have been able to predict the occasional emergence of these methane plumes. But as per usual, they still don’t know how to manage the massive volume of their own waste products, much less by factoring in the movements of Continental Shelfs.

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