UAH Satellite data for Jan08 in agreement with RSS data

University of Alabama, Huntsville (John Christy) just published their UAH lower troposphere data for January 2008. Like the RSS data set, it shows a negative anomaly, and a steep decline in the past 12 months though the magnitude of the anomaly is slightly lower at ∆T -.588 than the RSS ∆T -.629 degrees Centigrade.

I’ve plotted the UAH data below, as I did for the RSS data in the previous post:


And a zoomed version with the Delta T highlighted:


click for larger images

So as before, we have an indication that the huge La Niña event going on in the Pacific may be responsible for rapid temperature changes in our atmosphere. There’s also the ongoing solar minima thats dragging on.  But there’s more to it than that. Joe Bastardi of AccuWeather recently wrote this on ICECAP about the pattern that has emerged:

“It is straight out of the book of climate. The pattern is so much like the 1949-1950 La Nina, which was signaling the start of the reversal of the warming of the earth’s climate in the 1930s, ‘40s and early 50s. Only someone choosing to ignore it, or not wanting to see it, would not be cognizant of it. But because such a pattern leads to warmer than normal conditions in areas where the greatest centers of human induced global warming information comes out of, western Europe and the eastern part of North America, no attention is being called to the fact that the winter this year does have outstandingly large areas of colder than normal temperatures and in areas, the vast expanses of the tropical Pacific, and the vast expanse of the air above us.”

There’s a lot to be said for human pattern recognition, and when somebody of Joe Bastardi’s experience and skill makes a statement like the one above, we should give it credence.

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Jim Arndt
February 6, 2008 2:35 pm

Can’t zoom the Delta T, 404 error
FIXED, thanks

Gary Gulrud
February 6, 2008 2:39 pm

How low can we go? A year ago I was thinking the time lag between a secular drop in insolation and global consequences might be eight or ten years, but this La Nina, while expected, seems bound to bring the trend down, reversing the decade of “unprecedented” warming. I can hear the wails at GISS now, OH! Nooooooo…!

February 6, 2008 3:33 pm

If this trend (cooling or steady) continues, the AGW argument will shift to the following: Climate is even more sensitive than previously believed. PDO and solar effects are much stronger than originally thought. They are so strong that they are temporarily canceling out the C02 forcing. This means that once PDO and Solar effects reverse, we are going to be in even bigger trouble.

Jim Arndt
February 6, 2008 4:01 pm

Anthony I think RSS shows a steeper decline in Temperature than UAH. What is the difference. It seems there is a “bump” in UAH that doesn’t appear in RSS. Just thinking out loud.
REPLY: I’ll bump it up the food chain for an answer.

February 6, 2008 4:30 pm

Anthony, your RSS and UAB posts have already been mentioned on another blog I read and sometimes post but the warmers are all over it and you would think that RSS and UAB are all fakers. It makes me laugh if it weren’t so important that we get this right and some folks are just not going to look at the new data. Some times it can be so frustrating, or as Mama used to say “flustrational”. I guess some folks are just determined to die of heat exaustion no matter how cold it gets.

Stan Needham
February 6, 2008 5:02 pm

It makes me laugh if it weren’t so important that we get this right and some folks are just not going to look at the new data. Some times it can be so frustrating,
Don’t let it get to you whybill. I’ve finally gotten past the point where I let people like Tamino and Chriscolose get under my skin. They can believe what they want and deny what they want — it’s a free country. As long as they don’t make or influence policy that takes money out of my pocket, they can rant and rave their way into the loony bin for all I care.
Great piece by Joe Bastardi, Anthony. As to his observation that the Alarmist side doesn’t like to debate, well, there’s a reason for that. Ouch! that’s gotta hurt.
REPLY: I just went through an email debate today with some professors at Chico State University. I had sent an email to the sustainability group, and lacking an effective retort, brought in their pinch hitter to refute what I had to say, even though he wan’t a member. But he is one of those expert 1/2500 Nobel Laureates from IPCC, a biologist.
When I pointed out issues that he couldn’t/wouldn’t respond to, another prof then wrote a missive saying that I don’t understand basic science principles. And that old standard “the debate is over” followed by “this is a waste of time” and that he’d “read enough papers on the subject thank you”, and would not read any I suggested, because no paper that I could suggest could overturn consensus. I wasn’t arguing consensus, but a specific issue. But then he maintains “as a scientist, I maintain an open mind”. Yes ok alrighthy then, thank you for playing “Open Mind”. Don Pardo, tell them what they’ve won!
The arrogance and lack of self-awareness of position displayed by some scientists is sometimes beyond comphrehension.

Gary Gulrud
February 6, 2008 6:04 pm

You must be getting hot Anthony. Kate links every few days, and I just got decorated by none other than gavin for commenting here at their Ozzie hangout, JenniferMarohasy.
REPLY: Yes quite the row over there, Gavin is in usual form.

February 6, 2008 6:51 pm

Quick work Anthony. I check UAH late in the day and it hadn;t been updated yet. Seems UAH and RSS are is near perfect agreement. Can anyone explain the differences in methodology between the two?
Be sure to also keep an eye on the global 12 month running mean on UAH data. Its already fallen over .1C in just a few months, and should start dropping very quickly once the warm early 2007 months fall out of the calculation….

February 6, 2008 8:04 pm

The linear warming trend in last 10 years of the RSS data (Feb 1998 to Jan 2008) is just +0.007 degrees C per decade. I wondered how this compared to previous 10-year trends, so I calculated rolling 10-year linear trends with reference to every month of the last 19 years and graphed the results.
Basically, the current +0.007 trend is the lowest seen since 1989. The highest 10-year trend point was about +.47 degrees per decade in late 1998 (January 1989 to December 1998), the peak of the 1998 El Nino. Since 2003, the progressive trend (“the trend in the trend”) has been in almost continuous decline.
The trend figures will rise a bit once the 1998 El Nino moves out of the 10-year frame; however, with the current La Nina, it is likely to stay relatively low for some time.
An interesting point is that the climate disaster scenarios require a massive acceleration in the warming rate over that seen in the 20th Century. There is absolutely no sign of that yet. Quite the opposite.
I have only primitive web skills but I have tried to post the graph here
REPLY: Nicely done. But don’t let Tamino see it, he doesn’t tolerate such errant graphing on the web, especially when trend analysis is involved, and even more so when a running average is used. That said, I may just bump it to the main page.

Bill in Vigo
February 6, 2008 8:15 pm

dang guess I still haven’t figured it out.
REPLY, looks fine

Stan Needham
February 7, 2008 5:12 am

The arrogance and lack of self-awareness of position displayed by some scientists is sometimes beyond comprehension.
Anthony, since I’m not a scientist, the arrogance and condescension on the part of many Alarmists are two factors that weigh heavily on how I evaluate the whole issue. There are some, like Ferdinand, who argue the science very effectively while still maintaining a degree of skepticism. From everything I’ve read, that’s what science should be about — always questioning what you know, or what you think you know. That is something you do very well, and the main reason I’m drawn here every day. I hope the Bastardi article gets wide dissemination. It should be posted on the bulletin board of every elementary and high school science classroom in the country.

February 7, 2008 7:12 am

I apologize if this is a noob question, but I cannot seem to find the period that RSS or UAH uses for setting the temperature anomoly to zero. For example, I think the GISS uses the average of 1950-1978, or something close to that, as the “zero” anomaly. Does someone know or can they point me to what period UAH uses to set zero?

Jim Clarke
February 7, 2008 8:38 am

If the concensus view ever admits that solar and multidecadal ocean cycles have a significant impact on climate, they will be forced to admit that climate is not as sensitive to changing CO2 as they thought, a notion that seems almost intuitively obvious to many people I talk to.
During the 20th Century, we had an active sun and two warm phases of the PDO with only one cool phase. Even if we ignore the solar influence, it appears that the PDO alone changes global temperatures by about 0.3 degrees C. Since the 20th century began in the cool phase and ended at the peak of the warm phase, clearly half of the estimated 0.6 degrees warming was due to the PDO. That leaves only 0.3 degrees of warming due to CO2, assuming the sun had nothing to do with the trend, which is highly unlikely.
Low and behold, it appears that the real world sensitivity to a doubling of CO2 would be close to 1.0 C, which is exactly what the absorbtion science says it should be.
If we continue the general cooling trend for the next decade, the only defense the AGW’ers will have will be the aerosol wild card. Any natural cooling (or even lack of warming) means they have to reduce their current CO2 sensitivity estimate. Blaming aerosols, on the other hand, will allow them to keep their CO2 sensitivity high and still manage to blame humanity for everything. Evidence of natural variability must be suppressed in order to save the AGW theory and their reputations.

Evan Jones
February 7, 2008 4:07 pm

Has anyone done a plain old simple straight TSI percentage conversion? Or is that the mark of an idiot?
Wotthehell, I have nothing to lose. I am aleady a fool at best and an idiot at worst so far as the Open Mind is concerned.
Sooooo . . .
Temps have supposedly gone up, what 0.7K or whatever during the 20th Century? Temps are c. 300K. That’s an increase of c. 0.23% total energy.
What % has TSI increased during the 20th century? From c. 1364.7 W/m.sq. to c. 1366.1. That’s an increase of c. 0.10%. (tamino’s graph being the source.)
Therefore, TSI went up c. 43% or so as much as recorded temps. And I think we suspect that recent recorded temp rise itself may have been a bit exaggerated. (And the TSI bump is less from 1950 on.)
Just a thought . . .

February 7, 2008 5:02 pm

Evan Jones, the problem is the strong T^4 dependence. Trust me, unless climate responds VERY differently to different forcings, the only way for the sun to have the effect it apparently has is through amplifiers or some unknown method o energy transfer. Which is why I’ve become interested in the Cosmic Ray and Ultraviolet Ozone chemistry ideas.

Evan Jones
February 7, 2008 8:59 pm

I’ve never been much of a sun worshipper, but I thought I’d just ask the obvious question. Elsewhere I probably wouldn’t get a real answer, just a personal appraisal (mainly negative). And a host of links to papers at least 5 years old, if I’m lucky.

Jim Arndt
February 8, 2008 9:02 am

Andrew I think the CRF has a large effect. I have heard conservatively its 2% change in clouds where less or more. This is an indirect relationship to TSI while UV / Ozone connection is a direct relationship to TSI, UV can change as much as 100% from solar max to min. I have also heard some rumblings about solar wind effecting the east to west patterns in the atmosphere.

February 8, 2008 2:40 pm

Jim, thanks. I’ve been trying to figure out the effects quantitatively. There is so much we still don’t know! I’ve been reading this paper by Nir Shaviv, but its way over my head:
Nir uses so complicated math to quantify the cosmic ray effect, but its beyond my understanding.
I’ve heard that UV accounts for only 20% of the variance of temperatures (but, of course, this is the surface record, and everyone here knows a thing or to about results from that). But large changes in UV would have interesting effects.
Whatever amplifiers are correct, the sun is a great unknown as far as climate goes, at least for those who can’t see the obvious importance of it.

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June 18, 2008 4:09 pm

I look at the graph for the temperatures from 1978 through 2007 and I see the temperature march irregularly up, then drop precipitiously down, then march up again. It looks like what a graph of the temperature in my house might look like as the thermostat cycled from it’s “sleep” setting through “wakeup” then “day warm” and back to “sleep”. Only, I’d be checking out the old thermostat and furncae if every day’s high was higher than the last day’s, and every nights low was higher than the last nights. To me, this is a report of an upward trend. Sure hope it stops before it gets too hot and I can’t sleep at night, and the candles melt and the wine goes bad during the day.

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