Below is a photo of the USHCN climate station of record in Pascagoula Mississippi. Note the location of the MMTS temperature sensor. The phrase “industrial nightmare” comes to mind.
But the MMTS didn’t always have this sweet location at the water treatment plant. It was moved there after Hurricane Katrina. Craig interviewed the curator and writes:
“Moved to current location after “the storm” (Katrina), which took place in Aug. 2005. Previous location was over pavement. When I told the plant employee that there were problems with the instrument location, he said the NWS guy didn’t think there was anything wrong with it.”
Well, it’s a tough call; pavement or pipes?
Craig describes the location in his site survey report as:
“MMTS is 6’ north of big water pipe, 12’ east of the brick control building, and 10’ west of a concrete canal. There is a metal track with several hoses attached about 10’ overhead.”
Here’s another photo that shows the “brick control building”:
A reminder for the NWS employee from NOAA’s reference on the siting of temperature sensors might be helpful.
The location certainly doesn’t fit the “representative of the area” specification for siting a Cotton Region Shelter in the NOAA/NWS COOP Observers Handbook (PDF available here).
3.1 Shelter Placement. The ground over which the shelter is located should be typical of the surrounding area. A level, open clearing is desirable so the thermometers are freely ventilated by the flow of air. Do not install on a steep slope or in a sheltered hollow unless it is typical of the area, or unless data from that type of topographic location is desired. When possible, the shelter should be no closer than four times the estimated height of any obstruction (tree, fence, building, etc.). Optimally it should be at least 100 feet from any paved or concrete surface. Under no circumstances should a shelter be placed on the roof of a building as this may result in extreme temperature biases.
This aerial view looks representative of the area, right?
There’s two large heat sinks and plenty of humidity via the aeration ponds to go with that tanks and piping.
While GISS hasn’t caught up with the 2008 record yet, it looks like the new location may already be registering. The above is the USHCN data from that location.
Fortunately, NASA GISS knows just what to do with that temperature data from the waste water treatment plant
– spread it around a bit!
There, that makes the historical temperature record in Pascagoula all clear now, right?