NASA GISS caught changing past data again – violates Data Quality Act

From American Thinker – NASA’s Rubber Ruler

By Randall Hoven

A funny thing happened on the way to determining how hot 2012 has been on a global basis: temperatures changed in 1880.

We’ve been hearing that 2012 has been the “hottest on record.” I had written earlier that those claims were based on the contiguous United States only, or 1.5% of the earth’s surface. The “global temperature” in 2012 through June was only the 10th hottest on record. In fact, every single month of 1998 was warmer than the corresponding month of 2012.

I thought I’d update that analysis to include July’s and August’s temperatures. To my surprise, NASA’s entire temperature record, going back to January 1880, changed between NASA’s June update and its August update. I could not just add two more numbers to my spreadsheet. The entire spreadsheet needed to be updated.

I knew NASA would occasionally update its estimates, even its historical estimates. I found that unsettling when I first heard about it. But I thought such re-estimates were rare, and transparent. There is absolutely no transparency here. If I had not kept a copy of the data taken off NASA’s web site two months ago, I would not have known it had changed. NASA does not make available previous versions of its temperature record (to my knowledge).

NASA does summarize its “updates to analysis,” but the last update it describes was in February. The data I looked at changed sometime after early July.

In short, the data that NASA makes available to the public, temperatures over the last 130 years, can change at any time, without warning and without explanation. Yes, the global temperature of January 1880 changed some time between July and September 2012.
Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/09/nasas_rubber_ruler.html#ixzz27YZRxqIW

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

Once again it appears NASA has violated the Data Quality Act. Steve McIntyre wrote in 2007: NASA Evasion of Quality Control Procedures

The U.S. federal government has a detailed set of regulations requiring scientific information to be peer reviewed before it is disseminated by the federal government. NASA, which says that it has “employs the world’s largest concentration of climate scientists”, has carried out an interesting manouevre that has the effect of evading the federal Data Quality Act, OMB Guidelines and NASA’s own stated policies. Once again, the system involves an employee purporting to be acting in a “personal capacity”. Here’s how it works.

Peer Review Policy
U.S. federal policy on data quality is set out in a variety of steps. The Data Quality Act itself is very short and states:

The guidelines under subsection (a) shall –
(1) apply to the sharing by Federal agencies of, and access to, information disseminated by Federal agencies; and
(2) require that each Federal agency to which the guidelines apply –
(A) issue guidelines ensuring and maximizing the quality, objectivity, utility and integrity of information (including statistical information) disseminated by the agency, by not later than 1 year after the date of issuance of the guidelines under subsection (a);
(B) establish administrative mechanisms allowing affected persons to seek and obtain correction of information maintained and disseminated by the agency that does not comply with the guidelines issued under subsection (a); and

The OMB has issued several guidelines under the act. The first statement is here . A subsequent OMB Bulletin clearly required peer review of important scientific information before dissemination by the federal government as follows:

This Bulletin establishes that important scientific information shall be peer reviewed by qualified specialists before it is disseminated by the federal government.

There’s an interesting exemption in this bulletin (and we shall see below how this comes into play):

This definition includes information that an agency disseminates from a web page, but does not include the provision of hyperlinks on a web page to information that others disseminate.

NASA Policies
NASA has several manuals and policies setting out its own procedures for ensuring compliance with such policies. NASA guidelines specify far-reaching obligations on data quality for information disseminated by NASA. It notes the wide use of NASA information:

NASA’s information from its missions and programs is used by: government and national and international policymakers to enable sound and better public policy; NASA’s scientists and others cooperating with NASA to pursue their important work; the media in describing to the public the importance and advances of research; the educational community to educate a new generation of citizens in science, math, and engineering; and members of the public to enable them to be knowledgeable and inspired about NASA’s goals and accomplishments.

It states that the policies apply to NASA Centers as well as to headquarters:

These guidelines are applicable to NASA Headquarters and Centers, …

It states that NASA will ensure the quality of its disseminated information:

NASA will ensure and maximize the quality, including the utility, objectivity, and integrity, of its disseminated information, except where specifically exempted. Categories of information that are exempt from these guidelines are detailed in Section C.3….

Information products disseminated by NASA will be based on reliable, accurate data that has been validated.

About these ads
This entry was posted in Climate data, NASA GISS and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

140 Responses to NASA GISS caught changing past data again – violates Data Quality Act

  1. tallbloke says:

    Please could Jim Hansen make it warm last winter, I was frozen, and still haven’t thawed out..

  2. Russ R. says:

    Would you mind plotting the old data against the revised data to show the differences?

  3. John from CA says:

    Did they make the past colder, like NOAA did, to exaggerate the warming trend?

    Your previous post documenting the change in NOAA data was very disturbing; printed records no longer match the electronic data.

  4. pat says:

    This has got to stop. All of these alterations are highly questionable. Not one of the excuses given for these ‘homogenizations’ have any bearing in reality.

  5. Kurt in Switzerland says:

    These sorts of shenanigans seem to happen with increasing frequency.
    Some layperson questions:
    Why doesn’t someone just look at raw temperature records in predominantly rural areas over the 100 y+ record?
    Wasn’t the BEST project supposed to eliminate fudging, guesswork, data massaging, etc.?
    Why do we even “allow” the gate-keepers to modify records?
    Should certain tasks be separated, in order to prevent conflict of interest?
    Can’t meteorological organizations agree on a “Dow Jones” temperature average, based on calibrated, trustworthy and evenly distributed (as much as possible) sensors? Wouldn’t establishing such a baseline be an achievable goal of the WMO?

    Kurt in Switzerland

  6. It would help the quality of the article to put in graphs that compare the before and after data like Bob Tisdale often does.

  7. HG says:

    GISS changes on a month by month basis. Changes throughout the entire record all the way back to 1880 are the rule rather than the exception. See:
    https://www.changedetection.com/log/gov/nasa/giss/data/glb2_log.html

  8. Phil's Dad says:

    Presumably we now wait for a full and transparent explanation from NASA.
    And waiting…

  9. Steve Keohane says:

    There is simply no excuse for this.

  10. Resourceguy says:

    Orwell did not consider this form of manipilation of minds because back in his day the weather was just the weather.

  11. C. Quesenberry says:

    This is soooooooooooo unbelievably frustrating! It is downright deceitful and disgusting! I am reminded of the old Soviet joke, ““The future is certain, it is only the past that is unpredictable.”

    They are making a mockery of science and a mockery of the U.S. Is there anything at all that an ordinary man can do to stop this nonsense? Write my Senator or Congressman? I’m from Oregon; that won’t help at all. Any ideas? I am at my wit’s end.

  12. Jimmy Haigh says:

    Please Sir? Can we use the “f” word?

  13. D. J. Hawkins says:

    Randall;

    Perhaps plotting the “anomoly” of old vs new would be a quick way of seeing what adjustments were made.

  14. MarkW says:

    Kurt in Switzerland says:
    September 26, 2012 at 9:05 am

    You are assuming they want accurate data. Rather than data that supports the narrative.

  15. david says:

    NASA-GISS has been changing it’s data set with EVERY update. Some times the changes are substantial, sometimes larger. GISS is since November 2011 a version 3. If you want to know know the version two data (before it disappears…) go to: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v2/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt
    then compare V3 with V2 to get a real sense of how the data is being manipulated

  16. Bart says:

    Isn’t it long past time GISS was moved to a more appropriate federal agency, e.g., NOAA. I mean, really… what is the National Aeronautics and Space Administration doing in the climate arena to begin with?

    I suspect it is because the climate mafia thought to appropriate the gravitas of the agency which sent men to the moon, explored the outer planets, and captured breathtaking vistas of the far cosmos. But, instead of gaining credence for their cause, the parasites have only drained the vitality of their host. Time for NASA to eject that particular payload.

  17. Matthew says:

    Could someone possibly use the Wayback Machine or similar to get old copies? Or would those not have been archived?

    I’m thinking that sending documentation of this to NASA’s congressional oversight or somesuch might be… interesting

  18. Guido Guidi says:

    As far as I know, NOAA data changed as well.
    http://www.climatemonitor.it/?p=27766
    Does anybody know if CRU data changed too since they share the majority of the raw data? In other words, who did this first?

  19. DirkH says:

    Hope they got 1880 right THIS time. /sarc

  20. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Thankfully these changes will have no impact, as there is no scientific work done that uses GISS “data”, thus there are no peer-reviewed papers and ongoing works that are invalidated by such data changes and can be allowed to stand unchallenged without re-computation with the new figures. It especially has no impact on politically-motivated compilation pieces like the IPCC reports.

    And as there are especially no papers or other works that merely point to GISS for the data, any researchers using GISS would have archived the data when they obtained it and it will be freely provided and included in the Supplementary Info for anyone else’s use, just as they do with all the rest of their data, the impact is even less than nothing.

    Indeed, if anything GISS’ silent changes improve the science, by making it even more certainly known that GISS “data” should not be used for serious work, if any.

    (Do you think I have to add “/sarc” to that? Really?)

  21. Matthew W says:

    tallbloke says:
    September 26, 2012 at 8:55 am
    Please could Jim Hansen make it warm last winter, I was frozen, and still haven’t thawed out..
    ========================================================================
    Would that also make last years heating bill go down?

  22. Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

  23. Matthew W says:

    Is it possible to use the data that has been “adjusted” to recreate this 1889-1938 graph?

    http://bacontime.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/climate_and_man_003.jpg

    Might make an interesting comparison.

  24. george e smith says:

    “””””…..NASA, which says that it has “employs the world’s largest concentration of climate scientists”, has carried out an interesting manouevre that has the effect of evading the federal Data Quality Act, OMB Guidelines and NASA’s own stated policies. …..”””””

    Why on earth does NASA employ the world’s largest concentration of climate scientists ?? For that matter, what on earth does climate have to do with Aeronautics, or Space Research. I can accept that Aeronautics may have an interest in weather; the atmosphere in which Aeronautics is carried out; but what on earth do they need to know what happened in Antarctica 800,000 years ago.

    I just took some nice photos of the very last space shuttle flight; a tour around silicon valley (for the very first time), on the back of a modified Boeing 747 plane. The space shuttle never ever flew over silicon valley on either, any launch, or any re-entry. Much of the project took place here, and we had to wait till the last bitzer shuttle Endeavor kluged out of spare parts, was shuttled off to a veritable scrap heap museum in lala land.

    I never minded that my tax dollars were spent developing the technologies that made outer space travel possible; I don’t care to waste it on the weather.

  25. Jan P Perlwitz says:

    [snip - Sorry, I'm just not interested in your smear and accusations. As a NASA scientist who works with Hansen, you are in a position to demonstrate why/why not the charge of post facto data change if true. Instead you whine, and I'm just not interested in that. Do something substantive other than whining. - Anthony]

  26. PaulH says:

    I’m sure it’s just a simple matter of bit decay:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bit_decay
    Nothing to see here…
    /sarc

  27. Zeke says:

    “NASA’s information from its missions and programs is used by…members of the public to enable them to be knowledgeable and inspired about NASA’s goals and accomplishments.”

    I don’t think I am seeing the proper “inspiration about NASAs goals and accomplishments” here by members of the public.

  28. Steve C says:

    Is there no-one with the authority to call BS on this data fiddling and force full explanations of what, exactly, NASA (and NOAA, and …) are up to? Or is it, as many of us suspect, that anyone with that authority is one of those guilty of ordering it?

    It’s not just a US matter – “NASA’s information from its missions and programs is used by: government and national and international policymakers to enable sound and better public policy … “. This affects us all, no matter where we happen to be, and without that full explanation it’s fraudulent misrepresentation, because the facts are what was recorded in 1880, not what “somebody” decided in 2012.

  29. Gary says:

    So, conspiracy, corruption, malfeasance and misconduct, reaching to the highest level in the Space Agency or….

    the updating the GHCN product in Sept 2012 to fix coding errors in the homogeneity routine:
    ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ghcn/v3/GHCNM-v3.2.0-FAQ.pdf

    who can tell?

  30. Ged says:

    For anyone wondering, American Thinker states the effects of this latest change as:

    “To be fair, the overall result was that the 131-year trend now calculates to 0.64 deg C per century instead of 0.60 deg C per century. And the trend since 2002 is still a cooling one. (In fact, the cooling trend since 2002 is steeper with the new data.) So maybe this isn’t that big of a deal.”

    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/09/nasas_rubber_ruler.html#ixzz27b8HR4we

  31. Mike Smith says:

    C. Quesenberry

    You might try writing Sen Inhofe.

  32. David Ball says:

    So what happens once all the hens have been eaten?

  33. John West says:

    There is no doubt that the GISS temperature record is scientifically philosophically sound and reliable.

    Why do conflicts of interest continue to be ignored as if they’re not an issue. As soon as James Hansen’s reputation became entangled with the perception of a warming world he should have been removed from having any influence over the temperature record. If Bernanke went before congress and projected exponential increases in interest rates unless they passed legislation that he deemed necessary would we let him then stay in the position to determine interest rates? It’s surreal. I just want to wake up, find that it’s 1988 and James Hansen has just been arrested for perjury and extortion for the “trick” he pulled on Congress for personal gain.

  34. cui bono says:

    David Thomas Bronzich says (September 26, 2012 at 9:57 am)
    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
    ——-
    We do! Thanks Randall and Anthony.

  35. DirkH says:

    David Thomas Bronzich says:
    September 26, 2012 at 9:57 am
    “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?”

    WE do, David.
    THE WHOLE WORLD IS WATCHING, HANSEN.

  36. vukcevic says:

    As the sun is winding down the current cycle, we can expect more NOAA ‘artistry’ in the years to come
    Solar maximum? Oh, you just missed it
    26 September 2012 by Stuart Clark (new scientist)
    WAITING for solar fireworks to reach a grand finale next year? Um, sorry, looks like you already missed them. Structures in the sun’s corona indicate that the peak in our star’s latest cycle of activity has been and gone, at least in its northern hemisphere.
    ……….
    Steven Tobias, a mathematician at the University of Leeds, UK, (who) models what drives the sun’s magnetic field. According to his models, such a situation precedes an extended quiet phase called a grand minimum.
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg21528843.700-solar-maximum-oh-you-just-missed-it.html

  37. vukcevic says:

    Correction: Should be NASA (not NOAA).

  38. _Jim says:

    Article:

    “In short, the data that NASA makes available to the public, temperatures over the last 130 years, can change at any time, without warning and without explanation.”

    Stunning …

    .

  39. Kasuha says:

    I’m missing description of what was actually changed. Was it measurements of individual stations, gridded data, or average US temperature? Methods to calculate average or gridded temperatures may change and may provide different results even without changes to actual measurements, for instance.

  40. Steven Mosher says:

    Nasa does not change the data of the past.
    GISSTEMP is a computer program that estimates the global “average “temperature of the past and present. It relies on inputs made available by other sources, GHCN, and SCAR.

    There are ongoing projects to improve the coverage and quality of the incoming data sources. that means the input data can and will change on a monthly basis. Since the past is an estimate made relative to a 1951-1980 baseline period changes can and will ripple through the system. To put it simply. we don’t know the temperature of the past. We estimate it based on the data that is available. When that data changes, the estimate will change.

    The other thing is that you can expect more changes going forward as the newer versions of GHCN-M are rolled out. You can probably expect that more stations will be added over time as more and more daily sources are being made available. Unless you want to argue against using more station data this advance should be welcomed.

    Some of the data making its way into the records hasnt been public before ( availbale but not posted ) so it wil be interesting to see how more data changes the picture

  41. Doug says:

    My favorite Climate audit post has a nice graph of adjustments made in 2007:

    http://climateaudit.org/2007/02/16/adjusting-ushcn-history/

  42. Alice Springs has been going up and down like a yoyo.

    I’ve given up trying to follow it.

    http://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2012/06/24/temperatures-altered-yet-again-in-alice-springs/

  43. Kev-in-Uk says:

    Steven Mosher says:
    September 26, 2012 at 11:20 am

    so if somebody like UEA or the UK metoffice produces ‘new’ or adjusted data – this gets ‘read’ by Gisstemp and alters everything it produces?? Do you have more info please?
    Mind you – if that is the case – then presumably, the data used is ‘pre’-validated and public too?

  44. Kelvin Vaughan says:

    Every one knows the real data is wrong and must be adjusted to fit the models which are right!

  45. Neil Jordan says:

    So NASA scrubbed some temperatures. US Army Corps of Engineers and US Geological Survey scrubbed one of the biggest Southern California floods in more than a century (1969). See Page 26 “The Man Who Made a Flood Disappear” in “Alluvial Amnesia” at:
    http://www.unz.org/Pub/CGS_Report-2002-00001
    http://www.policyarchive.org/handle/10207/220
    http://www.unz.org/Pub/CGS_Report-2002

  46. peterhodges says:

    Paul Homewood says:
    September 26, 2012 at 11:33 am

    Alice Springs has been going up and down like a yoyo.

    I’ve given up trying to follow it.

    http://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2012/06/24/temperatures-altered-yet-again-in-alice-springs/

    Now that’s hilarious, nice documentation Paul.

    Goddard has been following the recent massive data tampering…

    http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2012/09/24/another-tough-month-for-ushcn-adjusters/

  47. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Okay, Mosher’s apologia on GISS’ behalf has been posted, as expected. Back to the issue.

    With the new data fudging, the current cooling trend since 2002 is now a little steeper. But they insist this is a temporary thing, there are transient masking events, the heat’s getting stored in the ocean somewhere, yada yada. So the new warming trend of the 131-year record is steeper, and when the real warming signal is once again revealed and brings with it the “lost” heat, we will be even more screwed than they had said we would be before.

    Thus it is worse than we thought, we must act now, and that’s the most-immediate now not the “this decade” now, to cut the carbon emissions and kill the anthropogenic warming. Now, while some previously unknown chance factors have given us a brief respite which has miraculously kept many tipping points from getting tipped, except for the Arctic sea ice.

    Does that sound like the current (recently revised) version of The Narrative?

  48. cui bono says:

    They should remind themselves that in other professions, such as accounting, economic forecasting or Ponzi investing, changing the figures every month could make you…..seriously rich. Oh wait…

    But you may subsequently get arrested.

    PS: Paul Homewood says (September 26, 2012 at 11:33 am)
    Alice Springs has been going up and down like a yoyo.
    ——
    Was she in a late night movie that I missed? :-)

  49. Kev-in-Uk says:

    Steven Mosher says:
    September 26, 2012 at 11:20 am
    ”’There are ongoing projects to improve the coverage and quality of the incoming data sources”
    this is a weird description – I accept that incoming data may well be valid, but it may equally have been ‘improved’ – or is that ‘fudged’? or ‘adjusted’?, etc, etc If so – Is the net result not the same, i.e. the data is massaged to newer values?

  50. How do they measure concentration of scientists? Parts per million? Or do they mean degree of undivided attention? As in “Our scientists concentrate more than yours; ours don’t even eat lunch they’re thinking so hard.”

    Or do they jam all their scientists into one little room with no windows? “Watch where you’re putting your elbow, Doctor.” “That’s not my elbow!”

    Or maybe they boil their scientists down to a thick paste, like tomato sauce.

    Is there a Latin name for this particular logical fallacy? Ad defigo esculentum? Lord Moncton, help us out here.

  51. Jim Masterson says:

    I’ve posted this before. The old Death Valley temperatures also match those on John Daly’s site. This is old news.

    Jim

  52. johnbuk says:

    So, does that mean our ancestors were colder than we thought?

    If they died early from hyperthermia does that mean we weren’t born?

    It IS worse than we thought!

  53. tommoriarty says:

    My guess is that among WUWT readers and others, there must have been thousands of downloads of the GISS data over the last decade. Perhaps we could all search for such files, pool them together in one location, and sort them out chronologically.

  54. Scute says:

    @ guido guidi Sept 26th 9.45

    You ask whether CRU has made adjustments. I read an article perhaps a year ago that described some changes they had made. I’m sure others here would have the info or links more detailed than my recollection which is as follows:

    CRU changed the way it used data from its more northerly stations in order to reflect more faithfully the weighting needed in areas with lower coverage. The methods they used were said to bring them more into line with those used by NOAA. This resulted in the HadCRUT being revised to make 2010 the warmest year, rather than 1998. It’s hard to believe that this happened without a song and dance and I am still seeing the old data/graph being trotted out, even by warmists. So take it with a pinch of salt, but I did read it on a ‘respected’ site. Quote marks are because I can’t remember which site and one of those I read is the BBC which can’t always be respected on this subject. Has anyone got more info on this?

  55. _Jim says:

    Gary says September 26, 2012 at 10:33 am

    the updating the GHCN product in Sept 2012 to fix coding errors in the homogeneity routine:

    ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ghcn/v3/GHCNM-v3.2.0-FAQ.pdf

    Two paragraphs excerpted from said cited/referenced document above:

    - – - – - – - – -

    Why did NCDC change to a new incremental version of GHCN‐Monthly?

    The software used to perform operational updates and reprocessing of GHCN‐M version 3 was modified to correct coding errors and to improve its run‐time efficiency.

    In particular, coding errors were corrected in the Pairwise Homogenization Algorithm (PHA) that had been identified during the course of a project led by Mr. Daniel Rothenberg in July 2011.  The project was carried out as part of Google’s “Summer of Code” and supervised by the Climate Code Foundation (with collaboration by NOAA/NCDC).

    These software changes were combined with other minor changes to improve debugging and processing efficiency. A total of eight software modifications were made.   The version number of the GHCN‐Monthly temperature dataset was changed from 3.1.0 to 3.2.0 to reflect these changes in the processing system.

    Why is the century‐scale global land surface trend higher in version 3.2.0?

    The PHA software is used to detect and account for historical changes in station records that are caused by station moves, new observation technologies and other changes in observation practice.   

    These changes often cause a shift in temperature readings that do not reflect real climate changes.  

    When a shift is detected, the PHA software adjusts temperatures in the historic record upwards or downwards to conform to newer measurement conditions.  In this way, the algorithm seeks to adjust all earlier measurement eras in a station’s history to conform to the latest location and instrumentation.  

    The correction of the coding errors greatly improved the ability of the PHA to find these kinds of historic changes. As a result, approximately twice as many changepoints (inhomogeneities) were detected in v3.2.0 than in v3.1.0.  

    While the PHA makes adjustments upwards and downward to historic data in approximately equal numbers, the algorithm identifies the need for a slightly larger number of positive adjustments (which correct abrupt, artificial cool steps in a station’s record) than negative adjustments (which correct warm step changes).

    While the adjustments for the v3.2.0 changepoints are on average smaller than v3.1.0, the greater rate of detection and correction resulted in changes to global land surface air temperature trends. Because there are more cold step changes (which require positive adjustments) than warm step changes (which require negative adjustments), most notably from the 1930s through 1970s, data for many years  from the middle of the 20th Century and earlier have lower values in v3.2.0 than in v3.1.0. In brief, the global average land surface air temperature trends are higher in the adjusted data than in the unadjusted data and higher in v3.2.0 than in v3.1.0.  
    - – - – - – - – - – - –

    Hmmmm … note the bolded two paragraphs up re: “While the PHA makes adjustments upwards and downward to historic data in approximately equal numbers, the algorithm identifies the need for a slightly larger number of positive adjustments (which correct abrupt, artificial cool steps in a station’s record) than negative adjustments (which correct warm step changes).”

  56. Lars P. says:

    george e smith says:
    September 26, 2012 at 10:04 am

    “””””…..NASA, which says that it has “employs the world’s largest concentration of climate scientists”, has carried out an interesting manouevre that has the effect of evading the federal Data Quality Act, OMB Guidelines and NASA’s own stated policies. …..”””””
    Why on earth does NASA employ the world’s largest concentration of climate scientists ?

    george has a very valid question. NASA is delivering a useless temperature chart based on GHCN as many others.
    Another “curiosity” could be on the planet you name with the money wasted on useless repeats.
    Why on earth does a space agency employ “the world largest concentration of climate scientists”?

  57. @Steve Mosher

    Nasa does not change the data of the past.
    GISSTEMP is a computer program that estimates the global “average “temperature of the past and present. It relies on inputs made available by other sources, GHCN, and SCAR.

    Mosh is right upto a point here. It is GHCN that produce a lot of the adjustments. (And let’s not forget, at least some national met offices adjust figures before they send on to GHCN).

    I had a long round of conversations with Reto Ruedy at GISS a few months ago about the ever changing past. The poor fellow was clearly getting exasperated and was getting fed up with explaining that it was GHCN’s doing, telling me

    Looking at GHCN’s data for the first station (Santiago Del ..) and comparing it to the unadjusted data, I found that last month that record was not adjusted, this month it was adjusted – that seems to indicate that this station is according to GHCN’s criteria near the boundary of being exceptional and a single additional data point may have caused it to cross that boundary; I would not be too surprised if next month it would switch back to being unadjusted.

    Unfortunately the buck has to stop somewhere.

  58. Nial says:

    > Kurt in Switzerland says:
    > Why doesn’t someone just look at raw temperature records in predominantly
    > rural areas over the 100 y+ record?

    As someone who grew up in Northern Ireland I have possibly mis-placed pride in the Armagh Observatory. (All school kids were dragged there for a trip at some point.)

    This isn’t what I was looking for but if you check out Figure 6 of…
    http://star.arm.ac.uk/preprints/445.pdf
    …”Mean annual temperatures at Armagh Observatory 1796–2002″, it doesn’t give you a lot give you a lot to get worked up about!

  59. Peter Miller says:

    This is what NASA said to explain the differences between the two data sets:

    “How does this version of GHCN‐Monthly compare to the previous version?

    The September 2012 release of v3.2.0 has no effect on the unadjusted (raw) data and little effect on global temperature rankings based on the adjusted data. However, the century‐scale global land surface air temperature trend is higher using the adjusted v3.2.0 data. With v3.1.0, the adjusted annual global land surface air temperature trend for 1901‐2011 was 0.94°C/Century. Using data from version 3.2.0 this trend is 1.07°C/Century. The greatest differences between the two versions of the adjusted data sets are in the data for years prior to 1970.”

    It is always the same – absolutely never changes – make the data more scary by changing the past. In this case, the warming trend has changed from 0.94°C/Century to 1.07°C/Century – an increase of 13.8%!!!!!!

    Such is ‘climate science’, even from once highly respected sources, the mantra is always the same: “just make it up as you go along, but don’t forget to always make the conclusions/’evidence’ worse than before.”

  60. Maus says:

    Mosher: “There are ongoing projects to improve the coverage and quality of the incoming data sources. that means the input data can and will change on a monthly basis.”

    Then there is an even greater need to archive of their own product. The Memory Hole is not a data archival service located in San Jose.

    “The other thing is that you can expect more changes going forward as the newer versions of GHCN-M are rolled out.”

    This, and the above, only state that the temperature record is not a ‘record’ and the data is not ‘data’. To the degree that your statements are correct then it is impossible for any science to be performed at all, and that none has been to date.

    It is improper in all cases to state “We haven’t finished measuring, therefore the experimental result is…” or “We haven’t figured out how to measure, therefore the experimental result is…”

  61. Zeke says:

    The reason NASA is employing the largest concentration of climate scientists harks back to the words of Pres. John F Kennedy. He likened the fair achievent of reaching the moon by 1969 to the mountain climber who, when asked why he climbed the highest peak, said, “Because it is there.”

    So Pres. Kennedy inspired the nation to reach the moon when he said, “Well space is there. And we are going to climb it!

    Note to NASA: “Climb it,” not “climate.”

  62. Zeke says:

    “Space is there, and we are going to climb it.” Not, “Space is there, and we are going to climate.”

  63. rogerknights says:

    Here’s a more direct link to the GISS table:

    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v3/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt

  64. cui bono says:

    As has been discussed here before, two-thirds of the ‘adjustments’ seem to go the warmists way.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/07/17/new-paper-blames-about-half-of-global-warming-on-weather-station-data-homgenization/

  65. James Sexton says:

    Same old/same old……. all this boils down to is having a dynamic history where nothing can be known. And nothing stated relying on the old information can ever be correct.

    It is an egregious affront to humanity.

  66. Lars P. says:

    As Watts et al 2012 clearly showed the issue is poor data quality:
    wattsupwiththat.com/2012/07/29/press-release-2/
    With adjusting and readjusting the data they go further and further away in Adjustment Nirvana but not getting better estimations.

    If one takes GISS old data:
    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/news/20120119/
    including uncertainty the slope was from -0.4 to +0.6 for the whole timeframe.
    The value I see now communicated with 1.07*C per century is outside the uncertainty range of their old work, invalidating all their old data – and all work based on the old data.

    If they estimated so wrongly the uncertainty in Jan 2012 what makes anybody believe that they did a better job now?

    Getting back to Watts et all 2012 the difference between good quality stations and the total stations more then halved the trend.
    So all these historical reconstructions are glorious guesstimates supported by computer programs. “Madame Irma astrology” comes to mind: same approach: put in some data, give it a “scientific touch”= run a program that makes glorious guesstimates and here is your horoscope.

  67. Gunga Din says:

    I had put this up before. I don’t know if it’s “GISS” or not. I don’t know if it went into the GISS calculations.
    But I have the record highs and lows the NWS posted in 2007 for Columbus Ohio. One small spot on the globe. I also have the record highs and lows they posted in April of 2012. Here is a comparison of the record highs. It does not include new records set after 2007. I was looking for changes to records recorded in the past.
    (Note: The 2012 list included ties. The 2007 list did not.) Again, I hope the copy/paste works right!
    Newer-April ’12 Older-’07 (did not include ties)
    6-Jan 68 1946 Jan-06 69 1946 Same year but “new” record 1*F lower
    9-Jan 62 1946 Jan-09 65 1946 Same year but “new” record 3*F lower
    31-Jan 66 2002 Jan-31 62 1917 “New” record 4*F higher but not in ’07 list
    4-Feb 61 1962 Feb-04 66 1946 “New” tied records 5*F lower
    4-Feb 61 1991
    23-Mar 81 1907 Mar-23 76 1966 “New” record 5*F higher but not in ’07 list
    25-Mar 84 1929 Mar-25 85 1945 “New” record 1*F lower
    5-Apr 82 1947 Apr-05 83 1947 “New” tied records 1*F lower
    5-Apr 82 1988
    6-Apr 83 1929 Apr-06 82 1929 Same year but “new” record 1*F higher
    19-Apr 85 1958 Apr-19 86 1941 “New” tied records 1*F lower
    19-Apr 85 2002
    16-May 91 1900 May-16 96 1900 Same year but “new” record 5*F lower
    30-May 93 1953 May-30 95 1915 “New” record 2*F lower
    31-Jul 100 1999 Jul-31 96 1954 “New” record 4*F higher but not in ’07 list
    11-Aug 96 1926 Aug-11 98 1944 “New” tied records 2*F lower
    11-Aug 96 1944
    18-Aug 94 1916 Aug-18 96 1940 “New” tied records 2*F lower
    18-Aug 94 1922
    18-Aug 94 1940
    23-Sep 90 1941 Sep-23 91 1945 “New” tied records 1*F lower
    23-Sep 90 1945
    23-Sep 90 1961
    9-Oct 88 1939 Oct-09 89 1939 Same year but “new” record 1*F lower
    10-Nov 72 1949 Nov-10 71 1998 “New” record 1*F higher but not in ’07 list
    12-Nov 75 1849 Nov-12 74 1879 “New” record 1*F higher but not in ’07 list
    12-Dec 65 1949 Dec-12 64 1949 Same year but “new” record 1*F lower
    22-Dec 62 1941 Dec-22 63 1941 Same year but “new” record 1*F lower
    29-Dec 64 1984 Dec-29 67 1889 “New” record 5*F lower

  68. Gunga Din says:

    PS Here’s where I got the list.
    http://www.erh.noaa.gov/iln/cmhrec.htm
    It seems to have changed again. Now they include the date it was updated, June 28, 2012, yet they have new records set in July of 2012. Perhaps they should at least update update date?

  69. Ric Werme says:

    Steven Mosher says:
    September 26, 2012 at 11:20 am

    Nasa does not change the data of the past.
    GISSTEMP is a computer program that estimates the global “average “temperature of the past and present. It relies on inputs made available by other sources, GHCN, and SCAR.

    There are ongoing projects to improve the coverage and quality of the incoming data sources. that means the input data can and will change on a monthly basis. Since the past is an estimate made relative to a 1951-1980 baseline period changes can and will ripple through the system. To put it simply. we don’t know the temperature of the past. We estimate it based on the data that is available. When that data changes, the estimate will change.

    Yes, I know the answer to my question, but I’ll ask it rhetorically anyway….

    If “we don’t know the temperature of the past,” then how do we know there is global warming?

    And some of those GHCN changes have gotten pretty substantial.

  70. Ric Werme says:

    Yeah, back when I was a growing up in Ohio, thermometers were so poor that we thought water froze at 30°F. </sarc>

  71. Gunga Din says:

    Arrrgh! I’ve got a couple of mistakes in my list. Both are typos. (Surprise!)
    Dec-12 note should say “Same year but “new” record 1*F higher“.
    Dec-29 note should say ““New” record 3*F lower”

  72. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Ric Werme said on September 26, 2012 at 1:42 pm:

    Yeah, back when I was a growing up in Ohio, thermometers were so poor that we thought water froze at 30°F. </sarc>

    Well to be fair, it probably seemed that way when the grownups were making applejack on the back porch…

  73. ntesdorf says:

    “The future is certain, it is only the past that is unpredictable.” Very True!
    The whole saga is becoming less and less like science and more like one of the fairy stories that grandmothers used to make up to entertain their grandchildren. Unfortunately this NASA, GISS, NOAA fairy tale has no moral lesson embedded in it and is not in the least entertaining.

  74. David Ball says:

    Steven Mosher says:
    September 26, 2012 at 11:20 am
    “so it wil be interesting to see how more data changes the picture”

    Why do I get the distinct impression that you already know how this is going to turn out?

  75. denniswingo says:

    An interesting question is raised by all of this…

    Who exactly is the climate code foundation.

    A bit of searching reveals…..

    http://climatecode.org/about/

  76. DocMartyn says:

    I am always struck by the large number of glaciers there must have been during the 1930′s dust bowl period.
    I am not sure if we will observe warming in the future, but I know for sure we will observe cooling in the past.

  77. JJones says:

    [quote]Steven Mosher says:
    To put it simply. we don’t know the temperature of the past.
    [/quote]

    IF that’s the case, then to put it simply we don’t know that there is global warming man-made or otherwise.

  78. Reg Nelson says:

    I guess the one positive in all of this, is that it points to the fact that there is no CAGW or significant GW. I there was, they wouldn’t have to jump through hoops, tree rings and models to manufacture it.

    One other thing I have noticed is that their recent (may, could, might) predictions/projections now have targets half century to a century out from now, so they can’t get called all out for being wrong.

  79. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    From denniswingo on September 26, 2012 at 2:57 pm:

    An interesting question is raised by all of this…

    Who exactly is the climate code foundation.

    That was the Clear Climate Code project (ccc).

    There was much ado about the Clear Climate Code project, the faithful rewriting and re-implementation of GISTEMP with the Python programming language. This was felt needed as the original code was problematic to get running, needed several “tweaks”, etc. Often people would say “GISS released all their code and it works fine!” then link to the CCC version. There were some bugs found in the GISTEMP code, that when corrected “Didn’t (meaningfully) change the results at all!” As I recall, there was talk that the CCC code was so good, and did such an accurate reproduction of the GISTEMP results, GISS was going to switch over to it.

    Then GISTEMP went v3 Dec 2011. The last update at the CCC site was Feb 2011. At the Google code repository, the last ccc-gistemp release was Oct 2010, last notable upload was apparently a GUI (graphical user interface) from July 2011. Four days ago someone uploaded something called “USHCN Step 2 reference archive 2012-09-22″, has zero downloads.

    So a group of warmist types didn’t like how GISS was getting disparaged, spent a lot of time and effort to show GISTEMP wan’t hiding anything, it was all perfectly logical, the code just needed some unifying with a common language… And GISS screwed them over and left them crying in the street. No one cares about “ccc-gistemp” as that matched v2, thus it’s now worthless. GISTEMP is restored as a near-impenetrable mess that no one wants to hack through to find out what it really does, even if “the code is freely available for download”.

  80. Phil Ford says:

    I would ask everyone here with a scientific background to do all you can to bring pressure on NASA to stop this kind of revisionist meddling – even as a non-scientist, even I get the distinct impression that this is not how genuine science is supposed to be done. It’s all very disturbing.

  81. Simon says:

    Estimates change as more historical data becomes available. The source is an oxymoron.

  82. E.M.Smith says:

    The way GIStemp works is that it takes as input the jiggered NOAA data, then re-jiggers it.

    I’ve been through all the code and it is designed to be “never the same way twice”. (IMHO with an upward bias). As the GHCN and USHCN data change each month (actually, on a nearly continuous basis throughout the month, with some ‘zombie’ stations reporting and updating prior months long after they have passed… sometimes years later) those changes are then used to make more and different changes in the homogenizing and UHI steps.

    Then even more in the final “create a grid box zonal anomaly process” (that comes AFTER all the temperature shenanigans… ).

    It can NEVER have a consistent prior / historical temperature. They will always change.

    @kadaka (KD Knoebel):

    I did get it running (on Linux. Does fine on a 400 Mhz AMD chip from the ’90s ;-) but the process was painful.

    I’ve not gone back to re-do the effort for the newer release. I will… if someone wants to pay an hourly rate to do it; but the product is so crummy it really ought to just be thrown out instead. Details, for those interested:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/gistemp/

  83. It seems to me like official climate science has gone down a rabbit hole. Expect white rabbits, hookah-smoking caterpillars and more, much more!

  84. DR says:

    GISS doesn’t manipulate, add and subtract data to inflate the numbers? Yeah, ok.
    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2010/05/31/giss-deletes-arctic-and-southern-ocean-sea-surface-temperature-data/

  85. Galane says:

    Steven Mosher said
    “Since the past is an estimate made relative to a 1951-1980 baseline period changes can and will ripple through the system. To put it simply. we don’t know the temperature of the past. We estimate it based on the data that is available. When that data changes, the estimate will change.”

    You don’t know the temperatures prior to 1950? What about all the monitoring stations that have been in the same locations for 150+ years? That data as it was recorded hasn’t changed and won’t change, unless MINITRU changes it and tosses the original down the memory hole.

  86. bw says:

    Agree that data reported by GISS are a mess. I’ve been monitoring some stations for about 6 years. Data change often. Many monthly data change by small amounts, but sometimes there are larger spikes, almost like outliers. For example, Amundsen-Scott showed consistently flat temps in the 1970s. When I looked at the same data in June 2012 there suddenly appeared an upward spike in 1978 temps, about 3 degrees. Saving the monthly text data, I noted that March to October had changed radically from the same data I had saved in 2007. Today I looked again and the 1978 spike has disappeared, and now the March to October 1978 data have become 999.9 instead, indicating lost data. The current chart now displays a gap for 1978. http://data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/gistemp_station.py?id=700890090000&data_set=14&num_neighbors=1

    It’s not just Amundsen-Scott, I’ve seen odd jumps and changes in several stations, such as Truk and Godthab-Nuuk over the years. Yet some stations show almost no changes, such as Vostok.
    To my eyes, there seems to be NON-methodical changes.

    You can’t have Good data unless it is acquired methodically so that others may be able to understand, analyze and critique the observations.

  87. Louis Hooffstetter says:

    Jan Perlwitz:

    These adjustments look like a scientific scam. Anthony invited you to step up and explain how / why these adjustments are valid, because you work for, and speak for NASA:

    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/staff/jperlwitz.html

    Take advantage of this opportunity, and please, please, please, tell us what the hell are you guys at NASA GISS are doing with the temperature data and WHY! Everyone here in the US, (and the rest of the world) wants to hear your logical, rational, explanation for adjusting this data (again!). Speak clearly, and don’t stutter! If you can’t explain these adjustments right here, right now, SHAME ON YOU!, and never expect anyone to trust you or your data ever again!

  88. prjindigo says:

    The sad truth here is that most errors in thermometer reading are high and most thermometers ERROR high. You can quite literally get away with adjusting all temps down by about 0.17 degrees and still be in the same sigma

  89. Anthony et al: I may have mentioned this before? There’s a tool out there that makes illustrating changes/censorship VERY quick and easy. iCyte.com has a program that lets you “snap” pictures, not just of a screen, but of a whole webpage, so that later on you can say: “Go to XXX.xxx and you’ll see the page with its dated material of June 10th, and then go to page XXX.xxx and you’ll see what the page looks like today and can see the changes.”

    To see its usefulness in action, see the potentially libelous comment aimed at me at:

    http://www.icyte.com/saved/www.smokefreedc.org/538500

    along with my defense comment (that was left invisibly “in moderation” for several weeks before being erased altogether). You can see the Cyte website’s save date as Nov. 13th, 2011 next to my cuddly little pic in the upper left. And THEN click on the little blue “S” in the upper right corner to see the comment disappear and be replaced with an innocent one when the present version of the page comes up!

    iCyte allows you to quickly and indisputably show censorship and data-changing in your web postings in a way that’s pretty difficult to dispute. As the climate wars “heat up” I think you’re going to need this kind of protection more and more.

    - MJM

  90. Louis Hooffstetter says:

    Steve Mosher says:
    “Nasa does not change the data of the past. GISSTEMP is a computer program that estimates the global “average “temperature of the past and present. It relies on inputs made available by other sources, GHCN, and SCAR.
    There are ongoing projects to improve the coverage and quality of the incoming data sources. that means the input data can and will change on a monthly basis. Since the past is an estimate made relative to a 1951-1980 baseline period changes can and will ripple through the system. To put it simply, we don’t know the temperature of the past. We estimate it based on the data that is available. When that data changes, the estimate will change.”

    Steve, I have the utmost respect for you, but you need to carefully re-read what you wrote above. You’re famous for your drive-by quasi-explanations, but this is the most patronizing drive-by BS I’ve seen you write here on WUWT. Please take the time to clearly explain exactly what you were trying to convey.

    Here’s where I disagree with what you wrote: Temperature data from the past does NOT change. Recorded past temperature data is fixed, empirical data recorded by human beings at specific points in time. For the periods when recorded empirical data is available, we DO know the temperature of the past (at specific locations). This data is fixed and unchanging, period! It is what it is. The people who recorded the data didn’t get it wrong, and climatologists have to deal with it. That’s the whole point of this post! Climatologists can’t adjust the data at will to suit their desires, and that’s exactly what it looks like NASA, Hadley CRU, etc., do on a routine basis.

    And any computer program, model, etc. that “estimates, projects, etc.” global average temperatures or whatever, but doesn’t match up with empirical recorded data, is flat out, plain WRONG! That’s why it’s called a “reality check!” If it fails the most basic test, which is simply to match reality, it cannot possibly be correct.

  91. Brian H says:

    … foxes … henhouse …

  92. DonS says:

    Been away for a while. Came back and logged on to my fav site and discover that the hounds are roaming far and wide chasing various scents ( the Aussie pollster nitwit and adjusted data). Can’t see how any of this advances the goal of getting the world’s peons (I am a Model A) to see that they are being scammed by scurrilous “scientists” who are operating in their own self-interests. Okay, Anthony has never said that was the goal. But to have lasting relevance all of this effort must effectuate some result. Rhetorical exhibition is one of my favorites, but results mean more than anything. I’ve got the scythe all sharpened up. Where should I swing it?

  93. Bad Andrew says:

    “Nasa does not change the data of the past.”

    Clearly, they do.

    Andrew

  94. Paul Vaughan says:

    Is there really any solution to this? Seriously – peer review?? Like that’s going to help! That mechanism would just be used as an excuse for loooooong delays in publishing equally bad or worse data. More time to stack the committee with “agreeable” people. More time to do elaborate data cooking. We’d lose the ability to document errors made due to panicked haste. Better to simply archive all past versions.

  95. Walter Dnes says:

    In case anybody’s interested, I’ve been keeping GISS monthly downloads since March 2008, plus some earlier ones I found on “Wayback Machine”. I also have NOAA starting January 2010 and I’ve also been following Hadley, UAH, and RSS for a while.

    Maybe WUWT should keep an archive of monthly updates from these sites to keep the warm-mongers honest. The archive should be downloadable so that thousands of people around the planet have a copy. The files aren’t that huge. And with xz compression http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XZ_Utils (which beats the daylights out of zip compression) the combined files (tarball?) won’t be that large. A note for anybody trying to automate the process, the GISS site responds with code “403 Forbidden” to the wget program. It can be made to work by blocking wget’s “user agent” string with the option…

    -U “” (this is the short option format)

    –user-agent=”” (this is the long option format)

  96. Hugh McLean says:

    Louis Hooffstetter (and anyone else who actually wants to know how and why adjustments are made to raw historical temperature data) can find complete details by following the relevant links on the GISTEMP main page: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/

    WARNING: the information provided by these references may prove troublesome to those with allergic sensitivities to actual science.

  97. JJ says:

    Louis Hooffstetter says:

    Steve, I have the utmost respect for you, but you need to carefully re-read what you wrote above. You’re famous for your drive-by quasi-explanations, but this is the most patronizing drive-by BS I’ve seen you write here on WUWT.

    You must be new. Welcome!

    ;^)

  98. Paul Vaughan says:

    “NASA GISS caught changing past data again”

    tallbloke wrote: “Please could Jim Hansen make it warm last winter, I was frozen, and still haven’t thawed out..” (September 26, 2012 at 8:55 am)

    A tale of climate historians & climate hysterians.

  99. _Jim says:

    Hugh McLean says September 26, 2012 at 6:48 pm

    … (and anyone else who actually wants to know how and why adjustments are made to raw historical temperature data) can find complete details by following the relevant links on the GISTEMP main page: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/

    WARNING: the information provided by these references may prove troublesome to those with allergic sensitivities to actual science.

    What bravado; that link is provided in the 4th paragraph in the head post but I suppose you are welcome at any time to re-post it.

    BTW, can you shed any light on this excerpt from here and shown:

    “While the PHA makes adjustments upwards and downward to historic data in approximately equal numbers, the algorithm identifies the need for a slightly larger number of positive adjustments (which correct abrupt, artificial cool steps in a station’s record) than negative adjustments (which correct warm step changes).”

    It looks as if it may go to the heart of the matter …

    .

  100. Pamela Gray says:

    Well…when ya got dirty data, ya got change the ol’ nappy!

  101. TimTheToolMan says:

    There must be an internal-to-NASA register of changes to the dataset which presumably would be subject to a FOI request. If not, how could they ensure that the same “valid” adjustment hasn’t been made multiple times?

  102. TimTheToolMan says:

    Mosher writes “To put it simply. we don’t know the temperature of the past. We estimate it based on the data that is available. When that data changes, the estimate will change.”

    Its true that GISS isn’t the source of the data but when it is generated, it is done so for a reason that should be documented. eg. “GHCN dataset version X update”

  103. David Ball says:

    Hugh McLean says:
    September 26, 2012 at 6:48 pm

    In case you missed it. You can bet someone on WUWT? has done just that.

    E.M.Smith says:
    September 26, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/gistemp/

  104. Blade says:

    Ric Werme [September 26, 2012 at 1:39 pm] says:

    Steven Mosher [September 26, 2012 at 11:20 am] says:

    “To put it simply. we don’t know the temperature of the past.”

    “If “we don’t know the temperature of the past,” then how do we know there is global warming?”

    Ouch! Ric cuts right to the chase.

  105. donald penman says:

    Satellite data is better than land based thermometer data then, we can calibrate satellite data to get an unchanging reading of global/regional temperature but using thermometers we can only ever get an estimate of global/regional temperature.I am concerned that all this adjustment of thermometer data to derive the statistic you want corrupts the data so that it no longer performs its original purpose which is to measure temperature at a certain place.If the thermometer data is not adjusted then we can use these results to see if our regional/global estimates are anywhere near accurate and the statistic you derive from the
    thermometer data fails that test.

  106. Carsten Arnholm, Norway says:

    Here is what they do: animation

    From a discussion thread in the skeptical Norwegian forum http://klimaforskning.com/forum/ (klimaforskning == climate research)

  107. Man Bearpig says:

    If what Steve Mosher says is accurate then there can be no previous record high or low temperatures – primarily as they are not ‘temperatures’ per se but seemingly proxy calculations subject to adjustment – in either direction. In theory if one year was a record high, then it could become a record low at the stroke of a pen.

    Also if the historical records are calculated values and not based on physical measurement then that too would question any ‘records’ claimed by the data set.

    Mosher it would seem has just acknowledged the GISS temperatures are not real and just some fantasy chart.

  108. Stefan says:

    @Hugh McLean

    Perhaps if the public were told these are an estimate of the planet’s past temperatures, then the revised estimates wouldn’t come across as corruption.

    And in a sense, everything is estimated, but when the ballpark figure lands you in a different city altogether, what use is it? How much of the missing heat is just estimated heat?

  109. The BBC will hate this! You can’t rely on anything these days.

  110. Defenders of these sort of adjustments often say that the adjustments largely cancel each other out, and therefore the overall effect on global temps is negligible.

    In which case, why bother with them at all?

  111. CodeTech says:

    Steve Mosher wrote:

    To put it simply. we don’t know the temperature of the past. We estimate it based on the data that is available.

    True. By the same token, do not forget that we also do not know the temperature TODAY, and certainly have no useful way of determining the temperature in the future.

    The best we have is estimates and models, and a historical record that has wide error bars and insufficient quality control for the kind of precision we think we have. And yes, that includes satellite measurements.

    In fact, temperature, global temperature, average temperature, and historical temperatures are almost completely meaningless. If you want any kind of useful metric, try satellite readings from a far distance, at regular intervals, with a single value. NO resolution issues. ONE number. One sensor reading the reflection from the dayside, one from the nightside. Then, and only then, it will be possible to get a handle on whether the planet is warming or cooling, and by how much. Give it 70 years to accumulate enough data to include at least one of the known major cycles.

    Anything else is like arguing about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

  112. Bill Illis says:

    The NCDC global temperature trend (which GISS gets its data from) has increased by +0.16C since the first time I saved it in November 2008.

    The increase from 1900 to November 2008 is now 0.16C higher.

    And it is not just random changes that would be expected from just fixing errors but a systematic steady adjustment through time.

    The questions are:

    - how much did they play around with the data prior to November 2008.
    - how much have they have adjusted the post-November 2008 temperatures

    Steven Goddard working with the Raw versus Adjusted data suggests they continue to adjust even the most recent temperature readings – like the meteorologists are still, last month, screwing up the current readings so badly that they still have to be corrected. And the NCDC has been especially active with the 2012 temperatures records.

    UAH is the only reliable temperature dataset.

  113. Paul Vaughan says:

    Book idea:

    The Hysterical Record: A History of Climate Science.

  114. JJ says:

    Paul Homewood says:

    Defenders of these sort of adjustments often say that the adjustments largely cancel each other out, and therefore the overall effect on global temps is negligible.

    Yes, we hear a lot of things like that.

    For example, there is one group out there that claims that, unlike GISSTemp or HADCrut or the others, THEIR superduper surface temperature estimate uses pretty mush ALL of the data that exist – WAY more than any of the other guys. And they have an extra special Cuisinart homogenization algorithm that not only avoids the pitfalls of the other guy’s adjustments, it also mystically allows them to claim that 100% of the warming they see is anthropogenic, without having to do so much as a single one of those pesky attribution studies. And they claim to get THE SAME RESULT as the people using only a subset.

    So, they say, the ‘global warming’ that we were sincerely (wink wink, nudge nudge) sceptical about is proven. The other guys were right all along, and gee aren’t we sorry we ever sincerely (wink wink, nudge nudge) doubted them. It doesn’t matter if you use ALL of the data and the BEST (TM) methods, you get the same answer as using a THIRD of the data and not the best methods.

    And yet each time the subsets get a little bit larger and a little bit “better” (they should probably trademark that) adjusted, their trends get warmer. And warmer. And warmer. Reversing the old saw, The more things stay “the same”, the more they seem to change.

  115. nottbrite says:

    NASA just like the BBC has lost the plot, they are very fortunate as they are dealing with hundreds of millions of idiots, after all if it came from them it must be true !

  116. CodeTech says:

    It occurs to me… if these adjustments continue on their current trends, eventually people will begin to wonder why it never got above freezing anywhere on the planet 100 years ago, even in July.

  117. John Blake says:

    Try posting retroactive changes to stock market indices, then seek post hoc remuneration by claiming your transactions made obscene profits on that basis, and see how far you get.

    NASA’s “climate science” stinks. And that goes for every one of the Green Gang –Briffa, Hansen, Jones, Mann, Trenberth et al.– not to mention Ehrlich, Holdren, Farnish, Kentti Linkola and all the ragbag Schellnhubers agog at Railrod Bill Pachauri’s New World Order.

    Ten years from now, these creeps will sanctimoniously “deny” everything. Faugh!

  118. ferdberple says:

    HG says:
    September 26, 2012 at 9:08 am
    GISS changes on a month by month basis. Changes throughout the entire record all the way back to 1880 are the rule rather than the exception. See:
    https://www.changedetection.com/log/gov/nasa/giss/data/glb2_log.html
    ++++++++++++++++++++
    WOW! This is a real eye opener. Look at the % change month to month. It is huge! 60% of the readings were changed last month. The highest on record.

    Most of the changes were between 1880 and 1936. Almost every value was changed. Some quite dramatically. Less after that time. Have a look for yourself. The changes are flagged in yellow, so it is easy to see where the greatest concentration of changes is happening.

    How is it that GISS can know that readings taken prior to 1936 are inaccurate and need to be changed? Is it simply a coincidence that 1936 is the point at which most of the changes end? Could it be an effort to erase the fact that the 1930′s set many more temperature records than have been set in recent years?

  119. ferdberple says:

    Paul Homewood says:
    Defenders of these sort of adjustments often say that the adjustments largely cancel each other out, and therefore the overall effect on global temps is negligible.
    +++++++++++++
    Then why make the adjustments? If they cancel each other out and the overall effect is negligible, would it not be best to simply not make the adjustments? Otherwise there is a risk that the adjustments will corrupt the historical records. Especially in the case of adjustments on top of adjustments, with the risk of unforeseen, complex interactions between the adjustments.

    Why take the risk of corrupting the historical records if the effects of the adjustments is negligible?

    The must likely explanation is that the effect is not negligible. Otherwise, the adjustments make no sense given the risk of data corruption.

  120. Coach Springer says:

    To paraphrase the Mosher explanation: We don’t know, we estimate, we re-estimate, we add new estimations, and we automatically “homogenize” them together in a Program. But don’t worry, it’s data!

    Skeptical? Moi?

  121. Henry Clark says:

    “david says:
    September 26, 2012 at 9:36 am

    NASA-GISS has been changing it’s data set with EVERY update. Some times the changes are substantial, sometimes larger. GISS is since November 2011 a version 3. If you want to know know the version two data (before it disappears…) go to: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v2/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt
    then compare V3 with V2 to get a real sense of how the data is being manipulated”

    Indeed one can see the difference, and that is the usual frog in boiling water tactic, keeping changes individually gradual so few people notice despite such adding up over time.

    Your link is helpful.

    I archived
    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v2/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt
    at
    http://www.webcitation.org/6AzbEEDqL
    (though it may take some hours to pass through the usual archive queue).

    Also I archived
    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v3/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt
    (already more fudged to cool the oldest years to increase the depicted warming trend)
    at
    http://www.webcitation.org/6AzbOz7W5

    Unfortunately version 1, relatively the least fudged data, may be already deleted from the government site, but at least this saves version 2 and version 3.

    So, when they predictably fudge it additionally further in a CAGW-convenient direction later, cooling the past more in their next revision like version 4 (as ideological polarization, confidence, and dishonesty continue to increase over time), those webcitation links will leave an electronic trail. These guys are almost clone-like predictable; for instance, I archived http://www.webcitation.org/6AKKakUIo on arctic ice just a few days before it was deleted as the link verifies.

  122. ferdberple says:

    The reason GISS adjusts the past is clear. Adjusting the present doesn’t work because eventually folks step outside and realize their houses have not caught fire, the oceans are not boiling, regardless of what GISS says.

    However, by adjusting the past there is no problem in saying the world was a frozen block of ice 130 years ago. No one is left alive to dispute it. The folks that created the records 130 years ago, they are long since dead and can’t defend their good name and the quality of their work.

    If GISS wants to say that 100 years ago folks didn’t know how to record temperatures, that the equipment all read way too high, that we now need to adjust the historical records downward, well who is there left alive to dispute this?

  123. Neo says:

    So how does somebody acting in their personal capacity become the source of “information that others disseminate” under the aegis of distributing “NASA” data. Federal law prohibits the personal or commercial use of the name “NASA”.

  124. stacase says:

    I save GISS data on an irregular basis, and I DID save June of 2012 and I just compared it to the current set
    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v3/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt
    and I find that nearly every single number was changed. Of 1588 entries, only 61 were left as is 1016 adjusted dowward 511 upwards the overall slope went down from 0.96° since 1850 to 0.84°.

  125. markx says:

    Steven Mosher says: September 26, 2012 at 11:20 am

    “Nasa does not change the data of the past.”

    Mosher really surprised me with this post. He usually seems like a very smart chap. Sounds quite Orwellian now (2 + 2 = 5 anyone?).

    Might be simply a matter of definition.

    Change : to become altered or modified: …
    Change : to become transformed or converted (usually followed by into ): …

    Steve, if they are not the same as they were last time we looked,. it means they have …. um …. changed….

  126. Knut Aasen says:

    I’m trying to document the changes in gistemp.
    Sorry but the site is currently only in Norwegian.
    http://knuta.no/GISS_en_studie_i_endringer-10151s.html&show=9
    I started in 2005 and worked my way up. Therefore, always one trend line from 1880til 2005 to track differences.

  127. Arfur Bryant says:

    Using a thermometer, I have just recorded the temperature outside my accommodation. The reading was 24.5 degrees Celsius.

    Would Steven Mosher or Hugh McLean mind making their adjustments and telling me what the ‘real’ temperature was, please?

  128. johnbuk says:

    Arfur Bryant said.
    “Using a thermometer, I have just recorded the temperature outside my accommodation. The reading was 24.5 degrees Celsius.”

    Arfur, it’s very easy really, you THINK the thermometer reading is 24.5C . You are obviously viewing the thermometer through your “ignorant sceptic” eyes and your brain is interpreting the data as 24.5C NOW.

    But if you were a climate scientist (who are the only ones who can make sense of these complicated scientific instruments) then you would probably see the real figure as, say, 25.5C.

    However, in say 30 years time (if we’re still here then and have wifi) then you’ll see the temperature will have dropped to the “correctly” adjusted figure of, say, 23.5C.

    Don’t worry yourself about it, just leave your wallet open at the front door so the government can help themselves at regular intervals. Better still, enrol for a climate change course at your local university and your eyes will be opened for good, new experiences will unfold and you’ll marvel at the wonderful clothes the emperor is wearing every day.

  129. Arfur Bryant says:

    johnbuk,

    Thank very much, mate. I am just about to turn in and now I can sleep peacefully in my own little sceptic’s bed safe and secure in the knowledge that the world’s climate scientists (and governments) have my safety and wellbeing (and rapidly thinning wallet) at heart. Phew!
    *
    Oh bugger! Did you say there won’t be wifi in thirty years? Now I’m really going to have nightmares…

    :)

  130. george e smith says:

    “””””…..Zeke says:

    September 26, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    The reason NASA is employing the largest concentration of climate scientists harks back to the words of Pres. John F Kennedy. He likened the fair achievent of reaching the moon by 1969 to the mountain climber who, when asked why he climbed the highest peak, said, “Because it is there.”…..”””””

    Well it wasn’t exactly “the mountain climber”; specifically, it was George Lee Mallory, and strictly speaking he didn’t climb the highest peak. He certainly climbed on the highest mountain; and so far as is known, he died without reaching that highest peak.

    Despite such urban legends, Sir Edmund Hillary was the first person, or one of the first two to climb the highest peak. Actually Sir Edmund Hillary did not climb Mount Everest; it was plain Ed Hillary, a New Zealand bee keeper who did that.

    And George Lee Mallory’s brother was the very Lee Mallory who played a (controverisal) role in the RAF during the Battle of Britain.

  131. george e smith says:

    Well as for Dr James Hansen changing GISSTemp, I don’t have a problem with him doing that.

    It’s his gig after all, and if he wants to change it , well let him do that. I think Beethoven changed the Overture to his Opera Fidelio at least three times; well there’s four different versions of it.

    But now if Hansen were to come out and claim that GISSTemp actually has something to do with the Temperature of the earth; well I would take umbrage at that. GISSTemp is simply GISSTemp; nothing more and nothing less.

    Anybody with enough vacant time on their hands, and access to numbers, can make up their own gig, and call it whatever they want.

    See, if I didn’t have some real work to do for paying clients, I could make up my own gizmo, and of course it would be called GESTemp; well I’d try something different, and put out a GESDrench every month. Rain gauges don’t have toxic Mercury in them like thermometers, and what could be more benign than rain. We have plenty of it, and it can’t go off into some runaway sudden pileup like Temperature can.

    So I’ll reserve GESDrench for the time being, till I round up enough MacDonalds Seniors coffee cups, to put a few around here and there; maybe under Weber grills, so they don’t fill up too fast.

    So we need to get a life and realize that GISSTemp is all there is to GISSTemp, and Hansen can change it if he wants to.

  132. ferdberple says:

    Steven Mosher says:
    September 26, 2012 at 11:20 am
    There are ongoing projects to improve the coverage and quality of the incoming data sources.
    ==================
    The historical temperature records are not “incoming data sources”. They are static sources.

    By all means work to improve the current sources. But you cannot improve the past sources by adjusting them and them claiming these are past temperature records. They are not. Only the originals are the past records. Everything else is synthetic and this should be clearly stated.

    Of course the historical temp are being adjusted downwards. The AGW reality says temps are increasing, so the historical records must be reading too high and need to be adjusted downwards to correct them.

  133. Arfur Bryant says:

    All scientific methods are equal, but some scientific methods are more equal than others…

    It’s really quite simple. If the data doesn’t fit the theory, change the data!

  134. wayne Job says:

    I have been saying for some time that mobs like this are running out of easy fudges, the ones they are making are only keeping pace with the cooling. The quiet sun is a bit of a bother for them as apparently the sun has no roll in the climate. The heat island effect being twigged by Anthony and others making them read real temperatures has caused them a little pain, so they have to reach even further back in time to maintain the status quo.

    Thus the fudges become more obvious and will become impossible to maintain over the coming years, as too many eyes are watching. Silly silly mob. Hangs your heads in shame.

  135. Keep in mind that the superb accuracy claimed for the recent Mars lander could not have been achieved without adjustment of past temperatures, still in the 80 million km of space between Earth and Mars, being reconstructed and corrected back to the 1880s like temperatures down a bore hole.
    Otherwise NASA would have to invoke a Mars Bar.

  136. Phil's Dad says:

    @David Thomas Bronzich (September 26, 2012 at 9:57 am)

    I think you mean “Quis custodiet ipcc custodes?” (or is that too Juvenal?)

  137. Tim Clark says:

    [ “employs the worlds largest concentration of climate scientists”]

    Obviously then, it’s way past time to clean out the feedlot.

  138. Steve from Rockwood says:

    I can understand wanting to improve a data set but when I downloaded version 3 and compared it to the previous version 2 the changes are obvious. Virtually all of the 1880 – 1956 temperature anomalies have been adjusted downward and most of the 1976 – 2011 anomalies upward. Now why would that happen? Plus from 1957 to 1975 they happened to get everything right?

  139. cptwayne says:

    Who guards the guardian?: tutela ero manipulated custodio themselves obviam themselves via a deceptio sepius accersitus ” optimus recubo “

Comments are closed.