UPDATE: NOAA plans to release SOTC at 1PM EST today. Look for updates soon and a special report on today’s release. The map below will automatically update when we have the new December COOP Tavg value, probably later today. I’ll have another post on the differences between the CRN and COOP in the near future. – Anthony
Pursuant to our previous story showing issues with diverging data and claims over time, NCDC has updated the Climate Reference Network Data for December 2012. I’m still waiting on the NCDC State of the Climate report to come in with their number, and I’ll update the graphic (in yellow) when it is available.
Being a state of the art system, it is well sited, and requires no adjustments and the data is well spatially distributed by design so that it is representative of the CONUS. Here’s the current plot (click to enlarge):
Each (small) number in blue represents one of the NCDC operated U.S. Climate Reference Network stations in the CONUS that we use. Here’s the data reports for December and the entire year:
2012 Average Monthly Reports – text files
Source for all data: ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/uscrn/products/monthly01/
The December report looks like this:
TOTALS Totals for T_MONTHLY_MEAN (column 8) = 296.7
Totals for T_MONTHLY_AVG (column 9) = 302.4
Total Number of CRN Stations Included in this Report = 116 out of 117 CONUS stations possible (stations with missing data excluded – see below)
Average of T_MONTHLY_MEAN Totals = 296.7 / 116 = 2.55775862068965 or 2.6° C Average of T_MONTHLY_AVG Totals = 302.4 / 116 = 2.60689655172414 or 2.6° C Average of T_MONTHLY_MEAN Totals in Fahrenheit = (2.55775862068965 * 1.8) + 32 = 36.6039655172414 or 36.6° F
Average of T_MONTHLY_AVG Totals in Fahrenheit = (2.60689655172414 * 1.8) + 32 = 36.6924137931034 or 36.7° F
SUMMARY National Average of Monthly Mean Temperatures = 2.6° C or 36.6° F National Average of Monthly Average Temperatures = 2.6° C or 36.7° F
EXCLUDED STATIONS The following stations reported no data (-9999.0) for either T_MONTHLY_MEAN or T_MONTHLY_AVG and were not used:
From the NCDC provided FTP data files we can calculate a yearly CONUS Tavg, which has never been done before by NCDC to my knowledge. Odd that is falls to somebody outside of the organization don’t you think?
Climate Reference Network Data for 2012
Therefore, from this data, the Average Annual Temperature for the Contiguous United States for 2012 is 55.25°F
Note also the value from the CRN from July 2012, 75.6°F far lower than what NCDC reported in the SOTC of 77.6°F and later in the database of 76.93°F as discussed here.
Makes you wonder why NCDC never mentions their new state of the art, well sited climate monitoring network in those press releases, doesn’t it? The CRN has been fully operational since late 2008, and we never here a peep about it in SOTC. Maybe they don’t wish to report adverse results.
I look forward to seeing what NCDC comes up with for the Cooperative Observer Network (COOP) in their “preliminary” State of the Climate Report for Dec 2012 and the year, and what the final number will be in 1-2 months when all the data from the COOP network comes in.
I’ll have more on this in the near future. I’ll be offline for the rest of the day traveling.
UPDATE: 10:30PM PST, Climatebeagle and others have been puzzled over the 117 stations used, and can’t reconcile with the larger list. Here’s the logic:
Some stations, such as the Oak Ridge, TN and Sterling, VA were removed due to them not reporting regularly or at all (they are test sites). The one CRN station in Egbert, Ontario Canada is not part of the CONUS, and is removed also. None of the stations in Alaska are used as they are also not part of the CONUS.
Here is the list: conus_stations_master_list_1-8-13 (PDF)
UPDATE2: 9:30AM PST, 1/8 Reader Lance Wallace noted a mistake, which has to do with versioning control on our end. One CRN station in Egbert Ontario was inadvertently included in the monthly code, where it was not in the daily code we run. We’ll rerun it all and update. I’m thankful for the many eyes of WUWT readers – Anthony