Gavin on the ropes over heat wave explanation

Tom Nelson writes:

If CO2 is really such an all-powerful warming factor, and if the science is so settled, why does warmist Gavin Schmidt have so much trouble explaining why the southeastern US hasn’t warmed since the 1930s?:

“Whether this is due to some oddity in the weather patterns, air pollution effects, irrigation or something else is unclear.”

Here’s the story:

Alabama’s heat wave: A preview of global warming or just a hot spell? | al.com

HUNTSVILLE, Alabama Alabama’s heat wave is just part of the normal climate roller coaster, not global warming, according to state climatologist and University of Alabama in Huntsville climate scientist Dr. John Christy…

“Since (today’s) temperatures aren’t higher than earlier temperatures, it doesn’t look like ‘global warming,’” Christy said, “but more like a problem we still wrestle with: unpredictable natural variability.” Christy said no one knows what causes these natural shifts in climate.
“The heat wave today is primarily natural climate variability,” agreed Dr. William Patzert, an global climate change researcher with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

“But it’s also a preview of coming attractions of what we are contributing to the atmosphere in greenhouse gases, which is definitely gonna heat it up,” Patzert said Friday.
“I am sounding the warning about what global warming will do out into the future,” Patzert said. “If you think it’s hot today, come back and take the temperature on July 6, 2050.” A hot summer day in 2050 or even 2030 could be 115 degrees, Patzert said.

Patzert said the Earth is about 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than it was 129 years ago, when Alabama began keeping the weather records Christy has researched. “The unequivocal proof of that is that much of that warming has gone into the oceans,” Patzert said. “We have seen an 8 inch rise in global sea level.”

…Other climate scientists asked by The Huntsville Times to review Christy’s findings last week also cautioned against linking Alabama’s current climate and “global warming.”
“It is true that one of the few places in the world where temperatures have not exceeded temperatures in the 1930s is the southeastern U.S. (including Alabama),” Dr. Gavin Schmidt, a climatologist at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, said in an email. “Whether this is due to some oddity in the weather patterns, air pollution effects, irrigation or something else is unclear.”

But Alabama weather over the last 100 years or so has “very little to do with global warming,” Schmidt said. “It certainly isn’t the case that predictions of Alabama temperatures can ignore what’s happening globally,” Schmidt said. “It is just that there is more noise … when you get to the state or local level. “
Dr. Virginia Sickle-Burkett, chief scientist for global change research with the U.S. Geologic Survey, said in an email that the role of humans in climate change has been demonstrated scientifically.

“Multiple lines of scientific evidence [like what, specifically?] indicate that most of the increase in average global temperatures since the mid-20th century is due to human influences on the atmosphere,” she said. Sickle-Burkett agreed with Schmidt that the Southeast’s climate has been less affected so far, for some reason, but that global warming is real.

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80 Responses to Gavin on the ropes over heat wave explanation

  1. Since 1930, the temperature trend for Alabama has been minus 0.17F/decade. But these figures are after NCDC adjustments of about 0.7F.

    Therefore the decline on raw temperatures is about 2.0F.

    NCDC have this “toolkit” which shows adjustments by state.

    http://nidis1.ncdc.noaa.gov/GHCNViewer/

  2. Kim Moore says:

    Schmidt has a gift. He could explain that light bulbs work by sucking away darkness and it would sound somehow plausible.

  3. Ian W says:

    Patzert said the Earth is about 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than it was 129 years ago, when Alabama began keeping the weather records Christy has researched. “The unequivocal proof of that is that much of that warming has gone into the oceans,” Patzert said. “We have seen an 8 inch rise in global sea level.”

    So now heat is measured in inches?
    There are multiple places on coastlines around the world that show NO rise in sea level. Yes you can measure that by satellite – but most people would validate those measures by going to old fixed markers and checking. These do NOT show the rise in sea level. Perhaps the satellites are wrong?

    Most people would also measure the heat content of the oceans by simple temperature measurement. The ARGOS buoys despite ‘adjustments’ to their output data do not show a huge ’8 inch’ increase in heat content. So why have the oceans so hugely expanded? Perhaps the measures of ocean levels are incorrect and they have not expanded. Perhaps there is no ‘missing heat’?. It radiated away due to the negative feedbacks shown by the ERBE and CERES experiments (which the AGW people were keen on sending up but not so keen on using the data from them now).

    I think these climate ‘scientists’ have got too used to talking to credulous mainstream media hacks in search of a headline.

  4. What WOULD it take for these people to agree that AGW was a failed hypothesis? Certainly they have shown an alarming tendency to attribute just about ANY observation to increased CO2 levels in the atmosphere, from increased cold to increased heat, from drought to flooding rains. Failed predictions don’t stop them — Australia’s Tim Flannery predicted in 2007 that Sydney’s reservoirs would never be fill again and that the country would need desalinization plants; now he says that “climate change cannot be ruled out” as a factor in recent flooding rains that filled some of those dams to overflowing.

    From Hansen’s prediction of a flooded New York West Side Highway to David Viner’s soliloquoy to a snow-free England, the alarmists are batting zero in their dire predictions. Their only “successes” are where weather events overlap what we know to be normal climate variability, yet which they still shamelessly point to as “proof.”

    This nail should be hammered at every opportunity; make the alarmists defend the falsifiability of their hypothesis. I know that some have tried to make the AGW scenario the null hypothesis, but that can’t stand up to even a casual challenge — they’re the ones making the case for CO2 driving the climate; they’re the ones who have something to defend, not those of us saying “natural variability.”

  5. Edohiguma says:

    1930s, roughly 1,000 years ago, roughly 2,000 years ago. There’s a pattern and I doubt it’s CO2 related. The Romans (wine in England) and Chinese (how to use chrome) certainly didn’t produce that much CO2 and it was much hotter 2,000 years ago. We have the archeological evidence for it. Same ~1,000 years ago. The Danes planted wine and in Japan the first novel of mankind was written. Every time we find higher temperatures than today we can see culture blooming. How strange!

    I’m appalled at how these people willfully ignore data and facts.

  6. Jimbo says:

    A hot summer day in 2050 or even 2030 could be 115 degrees, Patzert said.

    I thought that AGW was supposed to take place at higher latitudes and at night. I must have read some of this wrong.

    “Whether this is due to some oddity in the weather patterns, air pollution effects, irrigation or something else is unclear.”

    Could it be that the CAGW specualtion is wrong? We have also had flat temps for nearly 15 years!

    “……..but that global warming is real.”

    This very real warming has been taking place since the middle of the 1800s.

  7. Jean Meeus says:

    The meteorological station at Uccle (a few kilometers south of Brussels)
    was created in 1887. The highest recorded temperature there was 38.8
    degrees C, on 27 June 1947. Since, no higher temperature has occured
    at Uccle, notwithstanding the “global warming”.

  8. Jim Watson says:

    So we’re back to “global warming” are we? Oh, that’s right, when we have brutally cold winters like we did a couple of years ago it’s “climate change” but in the summer it’s “global warming”.

  9. matt v. says:

    I think there is too much being made out of regional variabilty which has always existed which is now being projected on a global map which leads to wrong conclusions about what our future climate will be like . Here on the Canadian side of the Great Lakes and St Lawrence region two of the three warmest summers in the last 64 years were in 1955 and 1949 . Some of the 10 coldest summers were 1951,1956,1958 and 1959. This was well befeore we had any Arctic warming to alter Rossby wave patterns and cause extreme variability to our weather . So one can see that projecting future warming just because we had a period of local record temperatures makes little sense . Canadian summers as a whole have have only risen 1.2 dgrees C in 64 years

  10. John Tillman says:

    Dr. Sickle-Burkett’s vagueness and lack of specificity is typical of the unscientific, indeed anti-scientific, nature of warmist verbiage. What does “most” mean, exactly? Fifty, 60, 70, 80 or 90 percent? Starting when in the mid-20th Century, precisely? How about the cooling spell in the ’60s & ’70s, during continuing apparent rise in CO2 concentrations, or the sideways temperature trend since 1998 (assuming thermometer data can be trusted)? These are questions CAGW cultists steadfastly refuse even to try to answer, but merely assert them over and over again, brazenly repeating the Big Lie and claiming unassailable authority.

    Which multiple lines of evidence? Carbon isotope ratios? Surely humans have dug up and pumped out of the ground sequestered hydrocarbons, but what have been the actual effects on global temperature and other climatic parameters of this activity?

    How about countervailing human activities which cool the planet? Can science be certain of the sign of net anthropogenic effect on climate? Scientists even have trouble making falsifiable predictions on the net effect of clouds, and on what the impact on cloudiness at all levels and latitudes would be of increased temperature, whether occurring naturally or through human actions.

    Clearly the science isn’t sufficiently settled to justify dismantling the world’s economy.

  11. John F. Hultquist says:

    I wonder what part of “global” it is that is causing them the most trouble?
    ~~~~~~~
    A hot summer day in 2050 or even 2030 could be 115 degrees, Patzert said.
    Quite so! And in the past, I have found such temperatures uncomfortable. Yesterday, we had 100 degrees F. and 14% R.H. Today’s outlook is for 97. I wonder if the difference will be noticeable.

  12. Ray says:

    A heat wave in Alabama is not Global! I know some would like to think they live in the center of the universe but this is getting ridiculous. What in Global they don’t understand? It’s just a local heat wave, stupid.

  13. pat says:

    Most Warmists calculate that the sea level rise since 1850 is 18cm or 7″. Of course the sea level does not appear to be rising at all in many places when actual fixed reference points are used, such as rock faces and harbor constructs. On the other hand Warmists are blessed with the descending Eastern Seaboard that gives the appearance of a rising sea level and thus satisfies the needs of the NY Times and the Washington Post and other credulous media.
    Under any circumstances, 1850 is coincidentally(?)a useful date for commencing studies on global warming and seal level rise because it is the generally accepted date for the termination of The Little Ice Age. And a bit of warming and sea level rise would be the norm, would it not?

  14. ferdberple says:

    The ARGOS buoys despite ‘adjustments’ to their output data do not show a huge ’8 inch’ increase in heat content.
    ================
    The amazing thing is how the oceans stopped warming precisely at the same time the ARGO was turned on. It also explains why the ARGO data is not shown graphically on their web site. Had it shown the warming it was expected to show, ARGO would have been front page news around the world. Instead it is buried and adjusted.

    The cooling the raw data shows – that was simple enough to solve by assuming the floats showing the cooling must be defective. Remove them from the sample and what you are left with are floats that show warming. This is very similar to the process of “calibration” in tree rings.

    The same process works everywhere. Any recording device, be it a tree, or thermometer, is “calibrated” to the temperature record. Those devices that do not match the record are discarded, and only the ones that match are kept. Since we know temperature as going up, any device that shows otherwise must be wrong and its records should be (and have been) deleted. Thus we know global warming is real.

  15. Dave Dodd says:

    This might be a dumb question, but do the same satellites and/or land-based-monitors which monitor sea levels, also monitor the possible effects of plate tectonics? Are the anomalous sea level changes in some areas simply due to the land along the shore line shifting up or down?

  16. timetochooseagain says:

    It’s not just that it isn’t warmer than in the thirties: it’s that the long term trend in Alabama is negative. -0.07 degF / Decade for annual mean temps according to the Climate At A Glance page. “Noise” is quite a powerful thing, isn’t it?

    Also:

    http://nsstc.uah.edu/alclimatereport/archives/pastreports/may/jja_hsvaatmax.jpg

    Isn’t it nice how the Alabama media apparently can’t be satisfied with consulting with the scientist who knows more about Alabama’s climate than anyone? Clearly they hoped that the other people they talked to would assure them that Christy was wrong, and that Alabama is doomed to fry by global warming.

  17. Kwasi says:

    “Multiple lines of scientific evidence [like what, specifically?]”

    It’s one thing to dispute the evidence. But to pretend you don’t even know what it is, that’s just bizarre.

  18. mike g says:

    @Paul Homewood

    Very neat tool. Many states showed adjustments here and adjustments there. But, not California! What idiots they must be! They’ve never known how to measure their temperature and they still don’t. GHCN has had to fairly consistently alter their entire temperature record to get their desired results.

    http://nidis1.ncdc.noaa.gov/GHCNViewer/

  19. matt v. says:

    ” A hot summer day in 2050 or even 2030 could be 115 F”. There is a nother equal possibilty that may materialize by 2030 which could indicate global and local temperatures that would be much cooler than 115F . If we have three consecutive low solar cycles, [first one has allready started ] the average July temperatures in Alabama could be much cooler[ perhaps closer to 75-80 F ] Isolated peaks are always possible . Just look at the past pattern from 1880-1910 . If we are looking into the future lets look at all the possible options , not just at the possible Co2 effects option.

  20. mbw says:

    Careful Kwasi. Soon the b-word will be banned.

  21. Paul K2 says:

    If readers would read the comments at the recent WUWT post “The folly of blaming the Eastern U.S. heat wave on global warming”, they will find that the recent heat wave is consistent with recent seasonal temperature trends in the NH mid-latitudes. The seasonal trends show the winters and early spring getting cooler, and the summers getting hotter.

    Paul Homewood in the first comment has provided the link to the NCDC Climate at a Glance site that helps answer the question about what is happening to the Southeastern United States. You can select the Southeast region in the interactive map and look at seasonal temperature trends.

    We would expect the US Southeast to have hotter summers recently. The trend shows that the summers in the Southeast got much cooler after the 1930s, but the last 32 years (satellite era), the summer temperature has risen about 1.28 deg F (about 0.40 deg F per decade).

    Climate At A Glance
    Summer (Jun-Aug) Temperature
    Southeast Region

    Some of the following data are preliminary and have not been quality controlled.
    For official data, please contact the NCDC Climate Services and Monitoring Division at ncdc.orders@noaa.gov.
    Summer (Jun-Aug) 1979 – 2011 Data Values:

    Summer (Jun-Aug) 1895 – 2000 Average = 77.94 degF
    Summer (Jun-Aug) 1979 – 2011 Trend = 0.40 degF / Decade

    The recent summers have exceeded the regional high summer temperatures from the 30s, and this year is on a course to take the top spot as the hottest summer ever recorded in the Southeast US.

    Looking at the long term graph for the SE US winter temperature, the recent winters have been quite erratic, with a couple of very cold winters… just what we would expect from recent meteorology theories.
    (see the WUWT thread comments on the Eastern US heat wave).

  22. Gail Combs says:

    Edohiguma says:
    July 8, 2012 at 8:19 am

    ….. Every time we find higher temperatures than today we can see culture blooming. How strange!
    ________________________
    You would appreciate E.M. Smith’s article on Civilization vs Bond Events

  23. Ed_B says:

    Kwasi says:
    July 8, 2012 at 8:58 am

    “Multiple lines of scientific evidence [like what, specifically?]”

    It’s one thing to dispute the evidence. But to pretend you don’t even know what it is, that’s just bizarre.
    _________________________________________________________________________
    What is bizarre is that you cannot post the answer. Do you have any evidence that is not cherry picked “papers”? We all know the earth has been warming since the LIA, so deduct that from any trends first.

  24. MarkG says:

    “What WOULD it take for these people to agree that AGW was a failed hypothesis?”

    Governments cutting all funding for ‘Global Warming’ research?

  25. Gail Combs says:

    Dave Dodd says:
    July 8, 2012 at 8:45 am

    This might be a dumb question, but do the same satellites and/or land-based-monitors which monitor sea levels, also monitor the possible effects of plate tectonics? Are the anomalous sea level changes in some areas simply due to the land along the shore line shifting up or down?
    _______________________________
    California is moving up – A Transform-Fault Boundary where two plates are sliding horizontally past one another. The eastern seaboard is heading down – the Old Appalachians and the Mid-Atlantic Ridge – a divergent boundary see: http://www.platetectonics.com/book/page_5.asp and http://www.platetectonics.com/book/page_6.asp

  26. Biddyb says:

    We could do with a bit of your global warming over here in the UK please. I’m completely fed up with our wretched summer; it’s cold and wet. Wimbledon men’s finals being played with the roof on. My garden is saturated. The only things thriving are the slugs. It’s dire. So much for our supposed hotter, drier summers.

  27. rgbatduke says:

    The argument is very simple. If the global climate models are correct, then the temperature will go up substantially. Of course, AR5 has it going up 2.8 C by 2100, not 2050, and starts that 2.8 C at some time in the past (so it already includes some fraction of the warming of the last 30 years). Of course 2.8 C is 5 F (almost exactly), which means that one could see temperatures as high as 105 F by 2100 where one sees temperatures as high as 100 F 30 years ago. Now, back in the early 1980s there was a heat wave that ran across the south that I actually remember because temperatures in Durham (and a lot of the South) reached 105 F. We were driving from NC to Texas at the time, and it was sizzling all the way.

    rgb

  28. jayhd says:

    “Patzert said the Earth is about 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than it was 129 years ago, when Alabama began keeping the weather records Christy has researched. “The unequivocal proof of that is that much of that warming has gone into the oceans,” Patzert said. “We have seen an 8 inch rise in global sea level.””
    My family has had a farm on the western shore of the Susquehanna Flats since the late sixteen hundreds. In that time frame, there doesn’t appear to have been any noticeable rise in sea level, let alone 8 inches. Maybe the Chesapeake Bay is connected to a different ocean than is the Gulf of Mexico.
    Jay Davis

  29. Paul K2 says:

    timetochooseagain wrote: Isn’t it nice how the Alabama media apparently can’t be satisfied with consulting with the scientist who knows more about Alabama’s climate than anyone? Clearly they hoped that the other people they talked to would assure them that Christy was wrong, and that Alabama is doomed to fry by global warming.

    Too bad that the reporter didn’t find a climatologist to discuss weather patterns, instead of a couple of climate scientists.

    Use the US climate at a Glance, and look at the Alabama summer (JJA) temperature record. The highest Alabama summer temperature was set in 2010, and 2011 came in sixth. This year could set a new record if July and August come in above normal.

  30. RiHo08 says:

    Gail Combs

    Thanx for the E.M.Smith article. This is the second time I have read it and I like the stitching together of pieces of human history on the bumpy climate road.

    What is intriguing to me is the predictions of climate change around 2030. These are the dates that Robert Ellison (Chief Hydrologist aka Captain Kangaroo aka…) suggests will be the time for another regime change based upon oceanic/atmospheric regime changes ala Tsonis et al.

    Hmmm. Arriving at similar prediction dates using two different approaches: one, observational and a 12000 year perspective and the other observing recent ocean currents and atmospheric pressure episodes.

    Of course Smith and Captain Kangaroo could be in cahoots and are in the pay of big oil and are just trying to confuse us muddle-headed skeptics. But, a prediction is a prediction, and some of us will be around to see: true or false.

  31. Otter says:

    paul kr, I am still hoping for your response to Rockwood, re your take on arctic ice in the 1930s.

  32. Bill says:

    Sounds like Gavin is being honest and NOT being an alarmist on this one. He should be applauded.

  33. Peter Stroud says:

    So some scientists and some politicians are blaming AGW for the heat wave in the USA. Well, here in the UK we are suffering from the coolest, wetest and most windy Summer for years. And guess what. Our environment secretary blamed in all on climate change. Which to her means CAGW.

  34. chris y says:

    Paul K2 says-

    “The trend shows that the summers in the Southeast got much cooler after the 1930s, but the last 32 years (satellite era), the summer temperature has risen about 1.28 deg F (about 0.40 deg F per decade).”

    Actually, the unadjusted data (GHCN adjustments are not justifiable and should be ignored) gives the following trends in degrees C/decade for the SouthEast region-

    The key is:
    Season…1981-1990…1991-2000…2001-2009
    Winter…-0.06…-0.01…0.00
    Spring…-0.04…-0.03…-0.02
    Summer…-0.03…-0.02…-0.00
    Fall…-0.02…-0.03…-0.01

    These are changes in degrees Celcius per decade. The table is flooded with negative numbers. I know not from whence your CACC data derives.

    We will all know if the South-East US climate has warmed when citrus crops are once again widely harvested as far north as South Carolina, like they were in the past.

    You end with-
    “…the recent winters have been quite erratic, with a couple of very cold winters… just what we would expect from recent meteorology theories.”

    This is the type of foundational logic underlying astrology, phrenology and similar non-scientific fields of study.

  35. Garrettt says:

    Schmidt’s answer above would make sense regardless of whether the warming was CO2 induced or not. I’m sure you’re aware of that Anthony. So why would you re-publish such a silly post by Nelson and use a headline that indicates that Schmidt is “on the ropes”?

  36. Paul K2 says:

    chris y wrote: You end with-
    “…the recent winters have been quite erratic, with a couple of very cold winters… just what we would expect from recent meteorology theories.”

    This is the type of foundational logic underlying astrology, phrenology and similar non-scientific fields of study.

    Do you know what recent meteorology theories I am talking about? I discussed them and linked at the “Eastern Heat Wave” thread. The trend to cold winters in the NH mid-latitudes is discussed in the Cohen paper. Here I will provide a link:
    http://web.mit.edu/jlcohen/www/papers/Cohenetal_GRL12.pdf

    Are you really claiming the NCDC is that wrong on temperatures?

    I did put a comment up talking about the Alabama state summer records, showing 2010 as the hottest summer in recorded history for Alabama, but the comment is caught up in moderation.

  37. timetochooseagain says:

    Paul K2 says: “Too bad that the reporter didn’t find a climatologist to discuss weather patterns, instead of a couple of climate scientists.”

    Huh? This statement is utterly incomprehensible.

    “Use the US climate at a Glance, and look at the Alabama summer (JJA) temperature record. The highest Alabama summer temperature was set in 2010, and 2011 came in sixth. This year could set a new record if July and August come in above normal.”

    John Christy uses much more data than NCDC does to more accurately construct a regional temperature history. But the primary difference: In the case of John Christy’s record of summer temperatures for Alabama is based off the daily max temps which correspond to, know, the actual “extreme heat”. So there is no reason to prefer NCDC’s data to John Christy’s record. On the contrary, it makes a lot more sense to use the record compiled by that state’s State Climatologist. Even so, according to NCDC’s mean temps for JJA for Alabama since 1895, the trend is:

    -0.06 degF / Decade

    Using individual years or shorter term trends is what is commonly know as “cherry-picking” and many among the more alarmed are quite critical of it when skeptics do so. It is amusing that it is okay when you do it, though.

  38. Gunga Din says:

    Ray says:
    July 8, 2012 at 8:32 am
    A heat wave in Alabama is not Global! I know some would like to think they live in the center of the universe but this is getting ridiculous. What in Global they don’t understand? It’s just a local heat wave, stupid.
    =================================================================
    But it’s a PR opportunity. The global climate isn’t cooperating so the PR must be stepped up.

  39. Patzert’s sales tactics are revolting. I see no mention from this “scientist” that it was hotter on earth 1000 years ago than it is now. Is it because of grant money for global warming that he talks like this? I’m just asking.

  40. Speaking of John Christy and Gavin Schmidt here is a video of them in a mini debate about “global warming. One has to wonder why Gavin Schmidt feels the need to interrupt.

  41. logicophilosophicus says:

    This week’s New Scientist explains it all. “Our weather is not only becoming more extreme, it’s becoming more extreme than anyone expected.” (I wonder if that includes Jim Hansen?) “Events like the 2003 and 2010 heatwaves were expected to occur only after greater warming, towards the end of the century.” The graphics show a bell curve displaced 1 to 2 sigma hotter: to the right of the orange slice labelled “extreme heat” is a new previously absent red tail labelled “unprecedented heat”. As King Alfred might have said, you can kiss your buns goodbye.

  42. polistra says:

    If you look at the ‘divisions’ instead of States in the NCDC data, there are a WHOLE LOT of areas that show either negative or no particular trend over the century.

    Irrigation? Alabama has very little irrigation. You want irrigation, look at southwest Kansas or central California. Both show no clear century trend, in both the ’30s are still champion.

  43. JChristy says:

    Readers:

    Here are some clarifying remarks on the subject of Alabama summer temperatures. First, for background, the press release was given 1 July and is reproduced at this media outlet.

    http://www.fox54.com/story/18920344/uahuntsville-study-on-heat-and-climatology

    Secondly, as Timetochoose noted, my temperature comments were based on TMax, not TMean which is all that “Climate at a Glance” provides. TMean is contaminated by TMin which is heavily affected by nearby surface development as many of us have shown in publications through the years, so it is, according to our evidence, an unreliable metric for “climate.”

    Thirdly, I had available to me hundreds of station-months not included in NCDC’s digital archive to take the series back to 1883 and fill in other gaps (see figure in press release.)

    Fourthly, the time series was reconstructed through a pair-wise comparison test similar to USHCNv2 but with a more localized emphasis.

    Fifthly, Paul K2 is probably correct that the NCDC data available (as is) show 2010 as very warm due primarily to the very warm TMins in the cities and towns. This metric is not TMax which represents the deeper layer of the atmosphere due to normal daily summer convection and thus a more useful climate variable as a representative of heat content of the atmosphere (see Christy et al. 2009 for explanations).

    Sixthly, the times series is for “Interior Alabama” which is basically starting at Greenville AL and driving north on I-65 to the Tennessee line and capturing all the stations within 50 miles of I-65. The is the area with the highest density of stations needed for such an analysis and where most of the people in Alabama live.

    Finally, if starting in 1895 using the average of USHCNv2 TMax for the 11 stations in Interior Alabama, the trends of both my preliminary time series and USHCNv2 are between -0.08 and -0.09 C/decade.

  44. With the very poor state that the educational system in America has become I imagine many that have graduated in recent years don’t even know about this:

  45. chris y says:

    Paul k2-
    “Are you really claiming the NCDC is that wrong on temperatures?”

    NCDC’s adjustments are FOS. Lets go with your claim that NCDC’s adjustments are not FOS.
    The table changes to the following-

    The key is:
    Season…1981-1990…1991-2000…2001-2009
    Winter…0.00…+0.05…+0.06
    Spring…-0.01…0.00…+0.02
    Summer…-0.02…0.00…+0.02
    Fall…+0.01…+0.01…+0.03

    These are changes in degrees Celcius per decade. The summer trend is 0.00 degrees/decade over the last 3 decades.

    Your claim of CACC-induced summer temperatures ramping up in the South-East is ridiculous, even when using NCDC’s adjusted temperatures.

  46. Kevin says:

    Did anyone else notice Gavin’s comment:
    It is just that there is more noise…when you get to the state and local level.”?
    Perhaps it is simply my layman’s ignorance, but as we get to the state and local level, don’t we have more accurate measurements of temperature? Wouldn’t it be easier to weed out the noise because we are closer to the ground, so to speak? Is it folly to make such a statement since the global temperature anomaly is calculated using the local data–at least at GISS and HadCRUT? I would dearly like some explanation of this statement.

  47. Chuck Nolan says:

    James Schrumpf (@ShroomKeppie) says:

    July 8, 2012 at 8:17 am

    What WOULD it take for these people to agree that AGW was a failed hypothesis?
    ———————
    That’s easy
    Just give the UN complete world control and whatever else they want and they will happily let CAGW go away.
    “Water Justice” is their next cause. The UN appears about ready to dump the cagw line for “sustainability.”

  48. Robert of Ottawa says:

    Ian W
    So now heat is measured in inches?
    Maybe that’s Penile Units, or Micro Manhattens, or something.

  49. Paul K2 says:

    Timetochoose: yes, what I wrote doesn’t make sense. I meant to say “didn’t find a pair of meteorologists” not “climatologists” to discuss changing weather patterns and extreme weather.

    I read Dr. Christy’s response, and find a few things problems with using his data to test whether seasonal temperature trends in Alabama summers are warming. He still is averaging the colder winters into the hotter summers, and saying “look, no change over the last 100+ years”. Yes, but after the early effects of human change on the Alabama countryside, followed by the growth of industry, including the steel industry in N. Alabama, what would be interesting is the temperature record in the last 30 years, say the satellite era. He is carefully avoiding the fact that the summers have gotten hotter, and the average temperature reported by NOAA shows three of the seven hottest summers in Alabama history occurred in the last five years (2010 is hottest, 2011 was sixth, and 2007 was seventh).

    According to AGW theory, the summer nights should be warming faster than the summer days due to decreased OLR due to the GHG effect. So a more composite temperature anomaly record would be useful to check this part of the theory.

    The winters significantly deviate from AGW theory expectations. There are some erratic winter temperatures very recently, with the winter of 2010 the fourth coldest. This is where the meteorological theory of arctic amplification reduction of the arctic ice pack, causing shifts in the jet stream kicks in. In the winter, only one or two extended blocking patterns in the jet stream sending arctic air down into Alabama, can impact the winter temperature anomaly significantly. The data from Alabama seems consistent with this.

    And Alabama is not alone. The same effect is seen throughout the NH mid-latitude land areas, but especially in certain longitudes where the jet stream is prone to shift and dip far to the south. The paper by Judah Cohen, that I have linked several times on this site, covers an analysis of the “Asymmetric Seasonal Temperature Trends”. And Dr. Jennifer Francis has identified longitudes where the elongated Rossby waves have been observed. Eventually, the next step is to analyze recent jet stream activity regionally, and link this activity to extreme weather events. And the data from Alabama (and similar data from Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, and South Carolina) all show 2010 as the hottest summer in recorded history, with 2011 either 2nd or 3rd hottest. And this year is on track to be the hottest yet!

    What is the statistical chance of getting the three hottest summers in a consecutive sequence? Very low, less than five chances in a million (although some could argue for a Hurst statistical analysis which would lead to a lower probability).

    The evidence is becoming clear, that hotter summers are arriving. And if the “Arctic amplification leads to extreme weather” theory holds up, the US is going to see some pretty extreme weather events.

  50. Smokey says:

    ^Here^ we see more globaloney from Paul K2.

    Cherry-picking one state, or one region and extrapolating from that example isn’t science, it is pseudo-science. The mendacious Gavin Schmidt and K2 want us to believe in runaway global warming, instead of believing our lying eyes.

  51. timetochooseagain says:

    Thank you for contributing to the discussion, Dr Christy!

  52. timetochooseagain says:

    Paul K2 says: “He still is averaging the colder winters into the hotter summers, and saying “look, no change over the last 100+ years”.”

    This is a completely false statement! What part of June-July-August are you incapable of understanding?

  53. CRS, Dr.P.H. says:

    Teacher: “Gavin, where’s your homework assignment??”
    Gavin: “I don’t have it….whether this is due to some oddity in the weather patterns, air pollution effects, irrigation or something else is unclear.”

    ….you can smell a line of B.S. from a mile off.

  54. Steve McIntyre says:

    In Hansen’s famous 1988 scenarios, he projected “greater than average warming” in the SE United States:

    there is a tendency in the model for greater than average warming in the southeastern and central U.S. and relatively cooler or less than average warming in the western U.S. and much of Europe in the late 1980s and in the 1990s. …

    See this CA post http://climateaudit.org/2008/01/27/hansen-and-hot-summers-in-the-southeast/ for discussion. (Note that Scenario B is the most reasonable BAU interpretation, not Scenario A which has very high CFC emissions.)

  55. DocMartyn says:

    “Jimbo says:
    I thought that AGW was supposed to take place at higher latitudes and at night. I must have read some of this wrong.”

    Gavin has been quite specific, the one place where you will not find a CO2 driven heating is in Antarctica, especially at higher latitudes and at night.
    I asked.

  56. Schmidt said. “It is just that there is more noise … when you get to the state or local level. “

    One of my pet peeves with climate scientists, the IPCC, etc, is that they phrase things in ways that mean one thing to non-scientists (including journalists) and another thing to scientists.

    What Gavin is saying here is that factors not represented in our models are more important in determining local climate than the factors we do include. Which of course begs the question, what are these factors?

    One thing that may bust the whole AGW thing wide open is models that have predictive value at the local/regional level. And we are starting to see such models.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22498628

    Surprise, surprise, they are aerosol based.

  57. John Tillman says:

    Thanks for that link.

    I think you mean “raises the question”, not “begs the question”. “Begging the Question” is the name of the logical fallacy of assuming what you intend to “prove”. For instance: global temperature appears in some series to have risen one degree C. since 1850 & CO2 has risen over 100 ppm since then & humans have contributed some of this CO2 gain to the atmosphere, therefore people are causing the planet to get too hot & we’re all going to die sooner rather than later.

    Sorry, just a pedantic pet peeve of mine.

  58. Kevin says:
    July 8, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    By ‘noise’, Gavin doesn’t mean noise in the recorded temperatures, he means noise in the (claimed) anthropogenic global warming (signal).

    See my comment above about climate scientists phrasing things in misleading ways.

  59. milodonharlani says:

    Correcting my prior post:

    For “…global temperature appears in some series to have risen one degree C. since 1850 & CO2 has risen over 100 ppm since then & humans have contributed some of this CO2 gain to the atmosphere, therefore people are causing the planet to get too hot & we’re all going to die sooner rather than later”, please read: “…global temperature appears in some series to have risen one degree C. since 1690 & CO2 has risen over 100 ppm since then & humans have contributed some of this CO2 gain to the atmosphere, therefore people are causing the planet to get too hot & we’re all going to die sooner rather than later, so we need to tax carbon & breathing & set up a world government to redistribute the funds thus raised”.

    I regret the errors.

  60. Paul K2 says:

    timetochooseagain wrote: Paul K2 says: “He still is averaging the colder winters into the hotter summers, and saying “look, no change over the last 100+ years”.”

    This is a completely false statement! What part of June-July-August are you incapable of understanding?

    The data I presented was for the summers. Dr. Christy really avoided looking at the recent 30 years of data on Southeastern states summers. Here is his quote:
    “Finally, if starting in 1895 using the average of USHCNv2 TMax for the 11 stations in Interior Alabama, the trends of both my preliminary time series and USHCNv2 are between -0.08 and -0.09 C/decade.”

    What part of the statement “Asymmetric Seasonal Temperature Trends” don’t you understand? And if we are addressing summer heat waves, then why aren’t we looking at measures of summer heat?

  61. chris y says:

    Paul k2-

    “what would be interesting is the temperature record in the last 30 years, say the satellite era. He is carefully avoiding the fact that the summers have gotten hotter,…”

    Wrong again. The GHCN summer trend from 1981 to 2009 for Alabama is -0.06 C/decade.
    A negative sign means the summer temperatures are dropping, not rising. Except perhaps in Mannland.

    “What is the statistical chance of getting the three hottest summers in a consecutive sequence?”

    The chances are close to unity when the keeper of the temperature data adjusts the historical records to fabricate fictitious warming.

    And by the way, since 1981-
    Georgia summers: -0.06 C/decade
    Mississippi summers: -0.03 C/decade
    North Carolina: +0.01 C/decade
    South Carolina: +0.02 C/decade

  62. Michael Jankowski says:

    ***…“It certainly isn’t the case that predictions of Alabama temperatures can ignore what’s happening globally,” Schmidt said. “It is just that there is more noise … when you get to the state or local level…***

    Well I guess we can ignore all that “noise” we get with states and/or localities setting record temps across the nation, not just the failure to do so in Alabama.

  63. timetochooseagain says:

    Paul K2 says: “What part of the statement “Asymmetric Seasonal Temperature Trends” don’t you understand? And if we are addressing summer heat waves, then why aren’t we looking at measures of summer heat?”

    What part of summer don’t you understand? Look at the plot in Christy’s link. Read the accompanying story if it helps. The data are for summer.

    “Dr. Christy really avoided looking at the recent 30 years of data on Southeastern states summers.”

    The only part of this that is not totally wrong is the claim that he didn’t look at the last thirty years, but to characterize looking at something close to a hundred more years including that period as “avoiding” look at that period is really bizarre.

    So the only vestige of a complaint you have is that Dr Christy didn’t cherry pick the time period over which to calculate the trend to show what you want it to.

  64. Anthony Watts says:

    @ timetochooseagain Paul Klemencic (Paul K2) is hopelessly crazed with the idea (as many of his friends are) that the weather is seriously “out of whack” when in fact it is Paul’s thinking that is out of whack. He’s one of the lost boys. No amount of logic can reach him, much like Al Gore and Bill McKibben. Best you can do is point out to others how hopelessly sucked in he is.

  65. timetochooseagain says:

    Anthony-I interacted with this guy before on Lucia’s blog. It’s quite clear he believes many incorrect things. I realize it is a waste of time trying to convince him. But I’m not trying to. I’m try to prevent people from getting the impression he isn’t wrong. At some point, of course, you have to be satisfied that you have shown this so that reasonable observers would conclude you “won the argument” or else you will be stuck doing it until the other party tires of the effort. Sadly, it often seems those most persistently in error have the most time to waste on this stuff so have the distinct advantage of being able to “wait you out” on arguments. I, on the other hand, may not be persistently in error, but I do have a lot of free time on my hands! :)

    That being said, I don’t really feel like continuing this conversation any longer.

  66. David Jones says:

    Paul K2 says:
    July 8, 2012 at 9:20 am
    If readers would read the comments at the recent WUWT post “The folly of blaming the Eastern U.S. heat wave on global warming”, they will find that the recent heat wave is consistent with recent seasonal temperature trends in the NH mid-latitudes. The seasonal trends show the winters and early spring getting cooler, and the summers getting hotter.

    You keep banging on about SE US being hotter and that is “global warming.” SE US is not “global!”
    No amount of repetition of your claim will make it so.

    REPLY: Plus, the SE USA region is seeing a cooling trend in the past 30 years – Anthony

  67. denniswingo says:

    Yes, but after the early effects of human change on the Alabama countryside, followed by the growth of industry, including the steel industry in N. Alabama, what would be interesting is the temperature record in the last 30 years, say the satellite era.

    Uh, the steel industry in Alabama has declined markedly in the last 30 years. as for temperatures, when we were kids, living near Birmingham, temperatures never went below 70 degrees from June 1 until September 1 throughout the 1970′s. Temps routinely drop into the high 60′s now at night in the summer.

    There seems to be less humidity in north Alabama now than 30-40 years ago and if you grew up there you know that humidity is what keeps the temps up at night. It would be interesting to see the data on this.

  68. denniswingo says:

    Addendum

    Here is the weather underground predicted temps for my home town over the next several days.

    http://classic.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/findweather/getForecast?query=Graysville,%20Alabama&wuSelect=WEATHER

    We would have never had a night below 70 degrees 30-40 years ago and if you look in the lower left at the almanac data you will see that the normal is 70. The record of 102 was in 1930 and the record low of 55 degrees was in the 1950′s.

    That is quite a bit of variation over the decades and the high temp yesterday in Graysville of 95 is a full seven degrees below the record.

    If AGW is supposed to drive humidity through an indirect effect, there is little evidence of it down south…..

    This winter will be interesting with a cold north pacific and an El-Nino….

  69. Terry says:

    Gavin showed himself to be a hack quite a while ago (climategate). Why do people care what he says?

  70. John Tillman says:

    Why does Gavin even still have a cushy federal job at GISS? He should long ago have been fired for blogging on the taxpayers’ dime. Same goes for Jimmie Hansen jetting about the globe, making a million or more off his public position.

  71. Paul K2 says:

    Anthony, I am using the Climate at a Glance website for NCDC that you recommended in a WUWT post recently:
    http://climvis.ncdc.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/cag3/hr-display3.pl

    I ran the mean temperature selecting the summer (JJA) option for Alabama.
    This is what I got from the NCDC site:

    Climate At A Glance
    Summer (Jun-Aug) Temperature
    Alabama

    Some of the following data are preliminary and have not been quality controlled.
    For official data, please contact the NCDC Climate Services and Monitoring Division at ncdc.orders@noaa.gov.
    Summer (Jun-Aug) 1979 – 2011 Data Values:

    Summer (Jun-Aug) 1901 – 2000 Average = 79.00 degF
    Summer (Jun-Aug) 1979 – 2011 Trend = 0.47 degF / Decade

    The site also shows the Rank of the summer temperatures by year (with 117 being hottest, and 1 being coldest).

    Alabama had the hottest summer in history in 2010 according to this site (Rank 117). And 2011 was the sixth hottest in history (Rank 112).

    Georgia hottest summers: 1st is 2010, 2nd is 2011
    S.C. hottest summers: 1st is 2010, 2nd is 2011
    Mississippi hottest summers: 1st is 2010, 2nd is 2011
    …. and so forth.

    I followed your instructions, reported back the results, and have been trashed on this thread.
    You claim that recent years haven’t shown a warming trend. Yet the NCDC shows the trend over the satellite era is 0.47 degF per decade.

    What did I do wrong?

  72. Paul K2 says:

    And now some meteorologists are talking about their latest theories in the press. Here is a quote from an news article in England:

    And what a summer. More than twice the average rainfall hit the UK in April. June was the wettest since records began, and the start of July has seen a month’s rain fall in 24 hours in some parts of the south-west.

    The bad weather has stuck and shows little sign of shifting, according to Helen Chivers at the Met Office. “The jet stream can get bends in it, it can get distorted, which can move us into a blocked pattern, like the dry weather we saw in winter … and the wet weather we are seeing now.”

    What is affecting these changes in the jet stream is the million-dollar question, said Chivers. Variations could be caused by temperature changes in the Pacific, but meteorologists are also studying how shifts in the Earth’s temperature, caused by global warming, affect weather conditions.

    “A lot of work is being done into the decrease in Arctic sea ice,” said Chivers. “Essentially, if you warm up a sea, you change the temperature differential between the poles and the tropics and that in turn influences the jet stream. Research has already shown the influence on north-west Europe winters, making them drier and colder, but what happens in the summer is still relatively unknown.”

    Britain’s geographical placement means variable weather is something we will have to get used to. With the Atlantic on one side and Europe on the other, where our wind comes from can make a dramatic difference. “That’s why in May we were seeing fine, dry weather and people were talking about drought, and not long after the concern was flooding,” said Chivers.

    So can we expect to see more wet summers in the (dreary) future? Peter Stott, head of climate monitoring and attribution at the Met Office, said the recent bad weather could be ascribed to the natural variability of the weather. “But climate change could be making things worse, because the globally warmer atmosphere now carries 4% more moisture over the oceans than in the 1970s and this could be leading to increased rainfall in weather systems.”

    The only aspect of the impact of climate change on the weather that most academics would agree on is the need for more research.

    “One of the challenges for attribution science is to better diagnose such weather events and be able to attribute any changed risk of heatwaves, flooding, etc, more accurately,” said Stott.

  73. Paul K2 says:

    David Jones wrote: Paul K2 says:
    If readers would read the comments at the recent WUWT post “The folly of blaming the Eastern U.S. heat wave on global warming”, they will find that the recent heat wave is consistent with recent seasonal temperature trends in the NH mid-latitudes. The seasonal trends show the winters and early spring getting cooler, and the summers getting hotter.

    You keep banging on about SE US being hotter and that is “global warming.” SE US is not “global!”
    No amount of repetition of your claim will make it so.

    REPLY: Plus, the SE USA region is seeing a cooling trend in the past 30 years – Anthony

    Sigh, David Jones, I am not primarily discussing global warming. I am talking about recent theories proposed by meteorologists tying changes in the NH jet stream to Arctic ice pack loss and loss of NH snow cover. We may disagree on what initiated the decline of the ice pack, but the fact is that even WUWT now agrees that a significant loss of ice extent will occur this year (to less than 4.5 million sq km).

    So what does that do to the jet stream? Changes in the jet stream are causing prolonged weather patterns leading to droughts, heat waves, precipitation events, and winter cold spells in the NH.

    Looking at temperature trends for mid-latitude NH land areas is one way to review the impact. If the jet stream stalls repeatedly in the same longitude, we would not just get a hot week; we would get a hot summer. This year a blocking pattern caused an abnormally warm March in the US Midwest. And now a similar blocking event has caused a serious heat wave. If this trend keeps up, this summer could be one of the hottest on records for the Midwest and Southeast US. Accompanying this heat wave is a serious drought developing in sections of the country east of the Rockies. West of the Rockies where I currently live, the weather has been cooler than normal because of the jet stream pattern.

    The commenters on this thread dispute the NCDC finding that recent summers in the Southeast have shown a warming trend. They disagree with the NCDC finding that the summer of 2010 was the hottest summer ever in the Southeast US.

    Ok… I searched for Southeast summer heat wave 2010. First hit I got, was a report from two agronomists working for the USGA. Here is their report:
    http://www.usga.org/course_care/regional_updates/regional_reports/southeast/Summer-Heat-Wave-Facts—August-2010/

    Is the USGA is left leaning organization like the Union of Concerned Scientists? Are these agronomists part of the “bad scientists” discussed here at WUWT?
    They say the summer of 2010 was very hot.

  74. Smokey says:

    Wood For Trees shows that it’s been warmer during the past 35 years. That is based on satellite data [by far the most accurate].

    Cherry-picking Alabama or the British Isles isn’t science. It’s, well… cherry-picking. Just like cherry-picking the Arctic while ignoring the Antarctic, which has ten times more ice. Gavin is just trying to misdirect from global temperatures.

    Globally, temperatures are completely normal, and well within past parameters.

  75. Paul K2 says:

    Smokey: I didn’t cherry pick Alabama; the reporter for the Huntsville Times asked Gavin Schmidt to compare Alabama’s recent high temperatures during the heat wave to climatology. I suggested earlier that its too bad he didn’t ask a knowledgeable meteorologist instead of a climatologist who isn’t likely to know the latest analyses and theories in the field of meteorology (study of weather and weather patterns).

    But the commenters here say the US Southeast isn’t experiencing hotter summers. The NCDC site disagrees. I encourage any reader here to go to the Climate at a Glance site, select Regional, then US Southeast and Mean Temperature, and all the years since 1895. The site will show 2010 as the hottest summer in the records (Rank 117), and 2011 as the second hottest summer ever in the US Southeast (Rank 116).

    And this year is on a course to compete for the top spot.

  76. mike about town says:

    Paul K2, I would only ask you to look at the UNADJUSTED temperature records before climatologists got their hands on them. Would 2010 have been the hottest year on record if it was versus unadjusted data from the 30′s? I don’t know the answer and am not motivated enough to look for it…but I am quite curious as to the answer.

  77. Sickle-Burkett errs in stating that “tthe role of humans in climate change has been demonstrated scientifically.” In the absence of the underlying statistical population, the role of humans cannot have been demonstrated but there is no such population.

  78. rw says:

    Britain’s geographical placement means variable weather is something we will have to get used to.

    But the weather where I am (next to the UK) has been consistently cooler over the past 4 years in comparison with the weather in the first half of the last decade. I certainly haven’t seen that variability you’re referring to.

    Also, it Britain is seeing greater “variability”, then why has the UK MET been consistently wrong in predicting “scorching summers” and mild winters over the past 5 years? If the weather were so variable, surely they would have gotten it right at least once!

  79. gofigure560 says:

    At least a couple of comments in this string mention the warming beginning in the mid 1800s. But the current warming (by definition, I would think) started at the low temperature point during the Little Ice Age. And, disregarding Mann’s bogus hockey stick graph (after all, Mann himself has claimed – more than once – that his “study” was not important !?) the bottom of the LIA was about 1680 (courtesy Dr. Evans, Australian physicist). That of course implies some 200 years of warming before co2 began rising, and also long before the industrial revolution.

  80. gofigure560 says:

    At least two of the comments in this string referred to temperature increases from the mid 1800s.
    But, if you discard the bogus hockey stick graph, the MWP and LIA revert to their proper place in global considerations. (Mann himself has claimed that his “study” wasn’t all that important !)

    Our current warming would have begun (by definition I would think) at the low temperature point during the LIA. That point, courtesy Dr. Evans (Australian physicist) puts that low point at 1680.
    That would be 200 years before co2 began increasing and also long before our industrial revolution.

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