Spencer: Hide the incline?

Is Spencer Hiding the Increase? We Report, You Decide

by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

Image by Anthony - with apologies to Dr. Spencer

One of the great things about the internet is people can post anything they want, no matter how stupid, and lots of people who are incapable of critical thought will simply accept it.

I’m getting emails from people who have read blog postings accusing me of “hiding the increase” in global temperatures when I posted our most recent (Dec. 2009) global temperature update. In addition to the usual monthly temperature anomalies on the graph, for many months I have also been plotting a smoothed version, with a running 13 month average. The purpose of such smoothing is to better reveal longer-term variations, which is how “global warming” is manifested.

But on the latest update, I switched from 13 months to a running 25 month average instead. It is this last change which has led to accusations that I am hiding the increase in global temperatures. Well, here’s a plot with both running averages in addition to the monthly data. I’ll let you decide whether I have been hiding anything:

UAH-LT-13-and-25-month-filtering

Note how the new 25-month smoother minimizes the warm 1998 temperature spike, which is the main reason why I switched to the longer averaging time. If anything, this ‘hides the decline’ since 1998…something I feared I would be accused of for sure after I posted the December update.

But just the opposite has happened, with accusations I have hidden the increase. Go figure.

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206 thoughts on “Spencer: Hide the incline?

  1. Re-posting this here because it’s relevant. I’ve found where the UAH and RSS raw data is stored. It’s at the National Snow and Ice Data Center in the “Data Pool” section of this page:
    http://nsidc.org/data/amsre/order_data.html
    I’ve not yet come across any UAH or RSS source code that processes this raw data. However, there is some general purpose source code for working with this data here:
    http://nsidc.org/data/amsre/tools.html
    You’ll want the AE_L2A.2 brightness temperatures data.
    http://n4eil01u.ecs.nasa.gov:22000/WebAccess/drill?attrib=esdt&esdt=AE_L2A.2&group=AMSA
    The raw data has the following noteworthy properties:
    *) It’s huge. I’d estimate a single day of temperatures will be about 2.5 gigabytes of data.
    *) It mixes binary and text data in a single file. The text data is in hierarchical format, but it’s not XML, JSON, or any other standard format. It uses custom tags to define the hierarchy.
    *) It includes all levels of the atmosphere. Usually, you’ll just want the troposphere, so you’ll have to extract that information out manually.
    For more information on this data and how it’s collected, see the WUWT post by Dr. Spencer, here:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/12/how-the-uah-global-temperatures-are-produced/#more-15191

  2. One thing I notice in graphing the data is the longer time shows the insignificance of short term trends. while the temp may have spiked it was short lived and within normal variation.
    Excellent work!
    This further disproves CO2 forcing as a driver of climate.

  3. The “Kiss Principle” applies to many fields, especially science and the military. Einstein was a master, imagine what he could have done to E=mc2. I, myself, prefer the top graph to the bottom one:-)

  4. Go figure indeed – it’s something that has been bothering me for a while – how come no matter what data one presents that contradicts the AGW belief, the reaction is always the same – you’re hiding the warming, or whatever. The AGW mindset doesn’t seem to get it that scientific theories can never be proved, but are easily disproved, or falsified.
    Take Trenbeth’s, now infamous statement, that the data is showing the warming, and that maybe they are not measuring the right data, right? Here is a classic case of a belief system in cognitive dissonance with the data, and try as hard as you might, you can’t convince a believer of anything, for their belief isn’t based on evidence, but on a deep seated need to believe (c.f. Carl Sagan).
    During the 1970’s when I was still an undergraduate I noticed a change in attitudes at University – rigorous testing of knowledge by examination was on the way out and replaced by in course assessment requiring a lot less intellectual rigour. This change came from the social sciences and the rot spread to the physical sciences. One muse I entertained was what would happen to science when that generation graduated and started to work as professional scientists – where the mores of the social sciences seemed to dominate the intellectuality of the physical sciences.
    It didn’t affect the physics or chemistry departments since in those sciences in-situ testing of hypotheses are easily done and crank theories quickly eliminated. But when you have science in which you cannot easily do in-situ experiments, like climate science, geology, astrophysics, etc, then the methodology becomes one of inductive reasoning to “prove” an hypothesis, or theory. Falsifying it falls by the wayside, and such sciences seem to attract the people who are at ease with the social science mindset.
    Cooking data for support of an agenda isn’t a crime as some of us believe it to be for this crowd – because the science has been inverted – a hypothesis was framed, and then data sought to confirm it.
    Those trained in empirical science would realise that it’s the presence of unusual novel data requiring a theory to explain it that characterises the scientific method. In this sense AGW has never been observed from the data in the first place and when the data don’t support the belief, sincerely I must add, that human oxidation of carbon is bad, then efforts are made to find supportive data, even to the extent of neglecting contrary data by omission, as Jonathan Cole has showed.
    It’s the price we seem to have to pay for allowing the social sciences into the physical sciences for the laudable goal of a multidisciplinary educational policy. The chickens have come home to roost, but I am not sure I appreciate the eggs they are laying.

  5. In the past year of WUWT, certain topics have come up. I have put together a webpage where a picture is worth a 1,000 words.
    http://robertb.darkhorizons.org/WhatGlobalWarming.htm
    Here, we examine the question of
    -current state of the N. Hemisphere (cold enough for you?)
    -Sea Level rise (hey- where did all that briny go?)
    -Ice Free Arctic al la Gore (break out the suntan lotion, boys, 1959 at the N. Pole was a real cooker).
    Enjoy.

  6. Well, I would be more likely to guess that UAH overestimates the increase, especially the very recent one.
    The January warmest record for the brightness surface temperature – on Jan 15th, 2010 – is now minus 16.29 deg Celsius, almost 0.2 deg Celsius warmer than the previous record I can see (but it’s conceivable that they were warmer days in January 1998 that I can’t access).
    There are some questions that Dr Spencer could answer. I have certain doubts whether the albedo is correctly accounted for. Isn’t the reflected solar infrared part of the radiation by the snow kind of incorrectly included to the thermal radiation?
    Sorry if this is a really dumb question – but I do guess that the UAH temperature increase between Dec 2009 and Jan 2010 will be much higher than the same quantity at GISS etc.

  7. Fair enough, the globe’s been warming. Some people who post here seem to think it isn’t, and claim a vast left-wing conspiracy has made it all up.
    Roy Spencer obviously doesn’t think so.

  8. One of the great things about the internet is people can post anything they want, no matter how stupid, and lots of people who are incapable of critical thought will simply accept it.
    —————————————————————
    When commenters were saying Roy Spencer was trying to hide an incline I thought they had a short memory and not taking time to look at things critically.
    They didn’t remember the difference that Roy Spencer had with Richard Lindzen in the ERBE data. It would seem that if Roy Spencer wished to hide inclines he would not have made an effort to publicize his critic of Lindzen’s work.
    Roy Spencer’s math found slight warming—a difference with Richard Lindzen’s.

  9. The ‘incline in the blue [and even the green] curve is marked, but very subdued in the red. Often what matters in this debate is perception rather than facts, and the perception one gets from the red curve is that the trend the last few years have been down. I have run the graph [the old one] by several lay persons and asked them what they thought and although not a valid scientific poll, their perception of the red curve was a marked downward trend. So, no accusation of hiding anything, just unwareness of how many people might perceive this.

  10. You could use both running averages on your graphs. I assume you use a computer so it isn’t a whole lot of extra work for you. Push comes to shove, they are both arbitrary time intervals and the choice is yours as long as the running average is labeled explicitly.

  11. Hi Roy, keep up the good work. I think the human brain is better at processing data than xl. As I see it you have a step change around 1997, flat trends before and after. 10 to 20 year time lag between solar events and their impact on temperature – the worst has yet to come IMO. The roads here (Aberdeen Scotland) are falling apart due to frost damage.
    I’m reading a book called “So foul and Fair a Day” right now which is an historical account of Scotland’s climate. Apparently, at the end of the 17th century, North Atlantic Sea ice was so extensive that Inuit were sited off the coast of Aberdeen – one the kayaks is in a museum here attached to the college where I used to study. Anyone interested in stories of cold and starvation will enjoy this book.

  12. John Hooper (12:35:59) :
    The earth has been clearly cooling since 1998.
    You are not taking starting points in to account.
    If 1998 isn’t a good starting point for you then let’s start with the Medieval Warm Period. That is the time period the Mann Hockey Stick graph tried to eliminate. Why would they do that? To make it appear the earth was never as warm as it is now.
    But it was warmer in the past than now. The earth is in a cooling trend.
    Manmade global warming is not happening.

  13. If one were to change the start and end dates of the average to 1984 – 2003 it would hide the incline even better. 🙂

  14. that is fun: “almost 0.2 deg Celsius warmer than the previous record I can see”
    almost 0.2 deg, around 1 decade later, with a moderate instead of a strong El nino? Fun coincidence. Just a coincidence. 😉 lol
    Yes, it is really only fun. But the UAH data show, there is no global cooling at all.

  15. I agree with Tom. It all depends on where you start/end. You can get the graph to point any way you want. Go from ’93 to ’98, it looks like we’re plunging into the sun. Go from ’98 to ’08, looks like an ice age is coming. Go from ’80 to ’08, no change.
    Of course, you have to know how to read charts too. Some people might be worried by these “spikes” in temperature, until you realize we’re basically talking about +/- .7c warmer or colder over the last 30 years.

  16. No, no, no . . . you aren’t supposed to respond to criticism with well reasoned argument, facts and data.
    Just call everybody that disagrees with you a moron or an idiot. That’s what the professional climate scientists do.

  17. That’s what it seems. They might not remember that Newtons laws are not perfect, as Einstein theory has proved, or that his theory about nature of light that was made of corpuscles, has also been proved incorrect, or even his alchemy passion…

  18. The amount of global warming is as trivial as the amount of sea level rise.
    Man has lived under far warmer and far colder times, though the latter is truly a hardship. Right now, it’s cold outside for the greater part of the N. Hemisphere.
    Many of the same people who peddled Ice Age Panic have simply flip-flopped thier theory, and their intent is rather obvious: To instill fear and dread.
    Dr. Spencer is simply showing us that the Global Average Temperature is not the burning issue that some exaggerate and distort it to be.
    Compare that Global Temp rise/fall to the average diurnal of summer or winter.
    It will be a lost puppy in the crowd.

  19. Some warmists claim sattelite data proves we are warming. I can’t get them to tell me which sattelites they used for the past 1,000 years. Can’t change measurement methods and locations and get clean comparisons.

  20. Louis Hissink (12:31:56) :
    “. . when you have science in which you cannot easily do in-situ experiments, like climate science, geology, astrophysics, etc, then the methodology becomes one deductive reasoning to “prove” an hypothesis, or theory.”

    The natural sciences, unlike physics and chemistry, do indeed rely on deductive reasoning. This is nature os the beast. This because of the time scales involved for the processes involved and the difficulty in obtaining anything close to a reasonable length of accurate data.
    The error many make is in assuming that the hypotheses derived from analysis of inadequate data can be validated by the short record of better data we have collecting for the last 20, 30 or 100 years from processes that change on centenial, millenial or longer time frames.

  21. I don’t think you have to change anything.
    BUT -if you do want to appeal to everyone and try to make them all happy (nie on impossible I think)- maybe this Ivy League MBA trick will do:
    Instead of using BIG numbers use tiny numbers. Instead of saying “13 Month” and “25 Month” averages say “1+” and “2+” yearly averages. (Now I know that sounds like something the NASA management might say, but think about it:-)

  22. This goes to show the AGW alarmist have no case. If one looks at the longer term trends, the global temperatures have been rising for thousands of years, sometimes at a slower pace, sometimes at a faster pace than the past 100 years. So, where’s the man-made global warming? So all you AGW alarmists either prove it or stop spreading the hoax.

  23. Global Warming is real and it has to be somewhere!
    How logical sounds that!
    Yeah, if you can’t find Global Warming outside, blame the guy who makes the graphs for hiding it.
    How should we ever discuss the subject of Global Warming on a serious basis with people who are so lost?

  24. Roy, could you tell me why you fit a zero order line to the data?
    What is the underlying hypothesis that is being tested; that temperature is going to increase 0.0133 degrees per year?
    I could understand a plot of DeltaT vs [CO]2, but not deltaT vs year.
    What is the hypothesis you are testing with your fit?
    My guess is that the data would fit a random walk better than a zero-order fit. Have you tested that?

  25. It is my experience that people lack patience. If they see something happening today, they want to see actions that show results tomorrow. This isn’t the case with climate. We might have 20 or 30 years of warming that is completely normal and natural. And it might take another 10 or 20 years for it to cool back to the “average” again. But people tend to want to see things done that show the results in one election cycle. That is hard to reconcile with a climate cycle that might span 50 to 60 years.
    Trend lines can be equally confusing and one start to finish trend line might actually include several different trends. This is particularly so if the “trend” starts at a low point in a larger cycle and ends near the high point of that cycle … as the trend shown in the temperature graph since 1979 does.

  26. When the data is out there for you to download and programs to read it available in several languages which you may also download, the comment “hide” is an oxymoron. There is always a question of what is the correct climatological time frame to use, but when you can pick your own at your pleasure, hiding is not ab apt word.

  27. Thanks Roy for showing the impacts of changing averaging times.
    However, using 13 or 25 year averages is likely to add distortion due to the difference from the 11 single or 22 year double solar cycle. This will likely give a progressive phase error as the average includes differing portions of the solar cycle variation. Recommend using 11 or 22 year averaging to eliminate this effect. e.g. See:
    Empirical analysis of the solar contribution to global mean air surface
    temperature change, Nicola Scafetta
    Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 71 1916–1923 (2009), doi:10.1016/j.jastp.2009.07.007
    See also Alexander’s averaging precipitation and river flows in South Africa.
    Linkages between solar activity, climate predictability and water resource development, W J R Alexander, F Bailey, D B Bredenkamp, A van der Merwe and N Willemse, JOURNAL OF THE SOUTH AFRICAN INSTITUTION OF CIVIL ENGINEERING Vol 49 No 2, June 2007, Pages 32–44, Paper 659

  28. Ref – Ron de Haan (13:44:10) :
    “How should we ever discuss the subject of Global Warming on a serious basis with people who are so lost?”
    ________________
    Never discuss religion, politics, or things that make people blush. AGW is their religion, politics and and THE thing that makes them blush. When Columbus returned from the New World he brought proof. Forget about “them”. Keep working. Bring proof:-)

  29. Lessons learnt:
    1. Post ALL data and analysis so that no one could accuse you of hiding anything. This applies to BOTH warmists and coolists (but has been *more* applicable to warmists, considering how they have been more inclined to.. err.. keep data under lock and key :))
    2. This is a highly politicized topic / issue, and readers’ *perception* matter more than actual facts. A little more explanation accompanying the data would help. For example, the longer averaging window (25 months) has the effect of lowering spikes such as the 1998 one, appearing to demonstrate a lesser degree of warming compared to the 13-mth averaging; however it also at the same time has the effect of raising the downward trend in the decade post-1998, hence also appearing to demonstrate a lesser degree of cooling vis-a-vis the 13-mth averaging.

  30. Yes, AGW can be found at your friendly local tarmac, with huge thundering Silver Birds roaring up and down 24/ 7.
    Only lately, a lot of airports have been under economic cutbacks, security shutdowns or snowed in.
    Global Warming Monitors are icing up, forgotten and lonely.
    Meanwhile, unbeknownst to the Airportlings, the outside world never got that warm, and is now growing colder. They just looked out thier window seats to the Earth 30,000 ft. below and assumed all was warm & fuzzy all over.
    But, now we know the real story: Airporthrogenic Global Warming never got any further than the end of the runway.

  31. Given all the old and now new concerns over how the land based temperature readings have been acquired and processed, I’m beginning to wonder if we had any global warming (natural + man-made) at all over the past 100+ years. So far it appears any rise is really insignificant anyway since it’s “official” been reported to be around 0.6 C. Most agree this is well within the natural variability over previous centuries and millennia. What if in fact the real temperature increase is more like 0.2 C, or perhaps even negative? In any case, gven these increases/decreases are so small, can’t we say now that there hasn’t been any global warming at all over the past 100 years? If man is in fact causing global warming, we’ll have to wait another 100 years to see proof of it. So, all the AGW alarmists are huffing and puffing at nothing so far. They have no common sense.

  32. “Gerry (13:52:57) : […]”
    Okay, so the objectivist individualist says look here, just right from the present the planet will turn into venus on my graph. Fine fine. Then i have another trick question (trick as in “tricking you”):
    Why did the mighty GCM’s fail to forecast this? (hindcasting doesn’t count!)

  33. Global Average Temperature (GAT) is the combined result of the deterministic chaos which drives our climate system. In view of this it makes no sense to show a trend line as this has zero information.
    It is also pointless to use any period to smooth the data, as this just causes smearing of the rich signal of variation that the real world exhibits. GAT trends can be ‘cherry picked’ at all time-scales to produce the evidence you want to support your personal belief.

  34. “DirkH (14:16:04) :
    […]
    Why did the mighty GCM’s fail to forecast this? (hindcasting doesn’t count!)”
    To clarify: fail to forecast the lack of significant warming in the last decade.

  35. I don’t get it; 13-month or 25-month smoothing average, temperatures haven’t risen since 1998 as I look at the graph.
    Mariss

  36. Does a text file of the monthly average data exist? I’ve not spotted a link here, so any advice would be appreciated. Don’t really want to download gigabytes onto m system!
    I’m not a fan of smoothing techniques, attractive though they may be to some people. If used it is essential to show the original data, as Roy has done, but I would really prefer the numbers.
    Robin

  37. It has just snowed overnight in some mountainous parts of Australia in the middle of summer!!! This is very unusual. So much for global warming. Where is it?

  38. Ern Matthews (14:33:15) :
    100 yr. average of the last 2000 yrs would look like an ammo dump after it’s been hit… rounds going off in trends every which way. Just as soon as the MWP (substitute an El Nino for present timeframe) was expended, the trend of boxes of ammo popping off would eventually subside.

  39. Re: David L. Hagen (Jan 17 14:01),
    David, the averages are over months, not years.
    Actually, 13 months is not a good choice since the average for a given month (say January) includes each month once except for the month six months earlier (in this case, July) which is represented twice. The twenty-five month average will include the current month three times and the others twice.
    If the trends are not the same for various months, this can produce a slight distortion in the graph.

  40. David L. Hagen (14:01:05) :

    Thanks Roy for showing the impacts of changing averaging times.
    However, using 13 or 25 year averages is likely to add distortion due to the difference from the 11 single or 22 year double solar cycle. This will likely give a progressive phase error as the average includes differing portions of the solar cycle variation. Recommend using 11 or 22 year averaging to eliminate this effect.

    You might want to read that again – Spencer is using 25 month averages. If he switched to 22 year averages then we’d have to wait 11 years to see recent effects.
    ——–
    I’m a little surprised the 25 month line is as close to the 13 month line as it is. It must come come from the effect of the 1:13 line using 13X the samples, but the 1:25 line only uses 2X more.
    ———
    It’s disappointing so many people are quick to jump on the negative aspects of anything without much thought, researching, or testing; be it climate data or Google search results.
    For this, people could just go to Wood for Trees (link above) and try out the smoothing on their own.

  41. Ern Matthews (14:33:15) :
    > I would like to see an 100 year average. I wonder what that would look like?
    Of satellite data? It would be blank for another 70 years. Then it would be a point for the next year.

  42. Mariss Freimanis (14:38:57) :
    I also see cooling since 1998. But some, from both sides of this issue, will say 1998 doesn’t count because that was El Nino warming. They should also quickly emphasize that the warming of 2009/2010 is El Nino warming.
    Meaning that the warming of 2009/2010 doesn’t count either—according to their way of looking at it.
    Global warming believers don’t want to emphasize that the current warming is El Nino warming because these slightly warmer temperatures has been the only good news they’ve gotten in years.
    That good news won’t look so good to them when the quick cooling that comes after El Nino warming sets in.

  43. Well by smoothing the curves it’s obvious Spencer is hiding the bumpyness. Just kidding Doc. 🙂
    BTW when I look at those graphs I don’t see a gradual upward trend as suggested by the linear regression line. What I see looks more like a step function occurring at 1998, the El Nino year. Prior to that the trend is a flat line at approximately -0.05. After that it’s another flat line at approximately +0.25. Do you have any idea as to what would cause the earth’s temp to take a sudden upward step?

  44. Why would it make a difference whether you used a 13, 25, or a 48 month average, when, as I recall from statements by Hansen and Jones that anything under 10 years is statistically insignificant? A 30 year trend isn’t even significant when you’re talking natural variability.
    Oh…forgot. If it’s warming in 1 year, it’s significant. Cooling in 7 years isn’t. Like 1934 being ever so slightly warmer than 1998 being insignificant, but if 1998 is slightly warmer than 1934, it’s major news…and 1934 gets the Voldemort honor of not being mentionable.

  45. Are personal preferencies allowed? The 13 month averaging, by emphasizing the 1997/1998 El Nino, shows that the effect was felt beyond the atmosphere temperature averaging. Apparently traces of the heat were noted far beyond its locality. It created one of the hottest months recorded. Granted this is not
    necessary for an atmosphere temperature graph and either can easily be read.
    Seems that when an El Nino creates the damage on Coral Reefs that this one did,
    some marker of its passage should be left.
    Perhaps like “Kilroy was here” for us oldsters.

  46. Dr Spencer
    Are you applying any weights to your averaging filters or are the straight unweighted boxcar filter averaging?
    A straight unweighted moving average is pretty messy from a digital signal processing standpoint (do a fourier transform of a box car function & see how it rings) – which is introducing spectral components that are basically noise – thus reducing the Signal to noise ratio of the data. A better approach is to use a cosine weighted average over your filter time of interest – much cleaner, less ringy signal (better S/N).
    Interestingly enough, with both filters you have applied, the resulting filtered data is pretty similar – both had filtered out the high frequency component in a similar manner & the residual low frequency signal tracks reasonably well – suggesting the power in the 13-25 month bandwidth is very low. Not sure what the physical significance of that is, just an interesting observation.

  47. What does it matter whether there’s warming or cooling ? The issue is whether man can influence it any more than King Canute was able to influence the tides.

  48. The satellite data is an excellent comparison to land-based temperature stations. There are still unresolved issues between land-based and satellite measurements.
    The UHI issue won’t go away. The IPCC estimates it as 0.006’C/decade.
    In a small contribution to the debate, a paper from Fumiaki Fujibe in Japan published in International Journal of Climatology in 2009 has some interesting results.
    The results were based on analysis of over 500 stations from 1979 to 2006 with the stations providing hourly temperature data. The temperature data was analyzed against population density around the location of actual temperature measurement.
    First, there was a clear actual warming in Japan during that period – around 0.3’C per decade. Similar to what the IPCC reports for northern hemisphere land-based measurements.
    Second, there was a clear urban heat island (UHI) effect. This was around 0.1’C per decade in the larger population densities. And there was a clear trend of increasing UHI effect as pop. density increased.
    The author also comments that during periods of less pronounced warming there will clearly be an issue of removing the UHI effect. I.e. against a 20th century increase of 0.7’C, a 0.1’C per decade artificial UHI issue will be a major problem.
    See more at http://scienceofdoom.com/2010/01/17/urban-heat-island-in-japan/

  49. John Hooper (12:35:59) :
    John,
    What most who post here think is that the globe may have gotten warmer, but we don’t believe that any link to C02 has been proven. We also don’t believe that trillions of dollars should be subverted to worthless causes that won’t accomplish a single thing they claim.
    The thousand-odd emails and documents sort of point to the fact that there is at least a small conspiracy to hide the fact that the scientist who keep making the claim don’t have the evidence they need either.
    This has been covered pretty fequently here.
    JimB (USA)

  50. I’ve noticed this tendency to smooth over intervals of length n years + 1 month. What is the basis for this? It still will include a seasonal signal, only dampened. Why not smooth over, say, 24 or 36 months? Then any temperature signal is season-invariant. If the purpose is to make the trend information most transparent, it strikes me that the most obvious choices for smoothing would completely remove the strongest systematic harmonic, namely the annual cycle.
    I realise that these are graphs of the temperature anomaly, but it seems reasonable to assume that even in the anomaly data there should be a small seasonal signal — say (guess) higher variation during the transitions, near the equinoxes. I would wager that in any reasonable measure of smoothness, a 12k smoothing is smoother than the corresponding 12k+1 smoothing (k>0) even though it uses a smaller averaging interval.

  51. Peter of Sydney (15:22:10) :
    Sorry, Peter, it’s all California’s fault. You see, it’s been so darned cold in the N. Hemisphere this winter that the Pacific is rallying some help, and has called on El Nino for emergency relief thrusters. Unfortunately, it took some of your summer and sucked it over to the West Coast of the US, and is about to dump it’s watery load.
    I’d like to think that when it’s winter in your half of the Earth that the favor would be repaid, but these Warmists aren’t known for sharing the joy of sunshine.

  52. “Peter of Sydney (15:22:10) :
    It has just snowed overnight in some mountainous parts of Australia in the middle of summer!!! This is very unusual. […]”
    Must be Al Gore on vacation down under.

  53. “Peter of Sydney (15:22:10) :
    It has just snowed overnight in some mountainous parts of Australia in the middle of summer!!! This is very unusual. So much for global warming. Where is it?
    Reports here; http://ski.com.au/
    Pictures here: http://hangwiththewang.blogspot.com/
    That’s insane. Mind you, being 18th January, 2010, summer, it’s ~25c in the inner west where I am right now. That’s pretty cool for this time of year.

  54. I suspect the issue is the smoothing finishes earlier, and thus drops a little section of rising temps, of course the same would happen if it was a downwards trend, its just what happens when you use a longer average, but some people dont seem to even understand simple statistics!
    Seems the alarmist are the ones being paranoid ;0)

  55. This is a red herring if you ask me. I don’t think anyone argues that we are warmer over the past 30 years, but that we are about as warm as the 1930’s, and the amount of warming has levelled off over the past 10 years.
    The main issue with the satellite data is of course buried with this discussion. Are measurements at 14,000 ft (near surface) really relevant to surface temperatures. January is the warmest month on record in 30 years according to the unadjusted satellite data And even if it is relevant, who cares, the main issue has always been what is causing the small amount of warming we have experienced.
    I still have not read anything of substance showing in a conclusive manner that mans CO2 is responsible for all or most of the warming. Correlation does not prove causation. I think you could show warming is correlated with the number of runs scored in the MLB season.
    It was cold in the 60’s when runs were hard to come by, and warm in the 90’s when steroids caused balls to fly out of the park and runs were scored aplenty before levelling off in the last few years. Perhaps warming is related to steroid use?. I suppose warmers would say juiced players exhale more CO2. Or is it colder weather suppresses runs and warmer weather enhances runs, or none of the above. Maybe we should tax MLB tickets and players if we can show they are responsible for global warming. LOL.

  56. Dr Spencer: I believe the accusation had to do with the fact that the 25-month average tends to miss most of the recent rise in temperatures since 2008. However, I agree such an average does reduce the 1998 spike and that any claim regarding your motives for changing the averaging is just pure speculation on the part of the bloggers involved.
    DirkH says:

    Why did the mighty GCM’s fail to forecast this? (hindcasting doesn’t count!)

    Because the ups-and-downs of the climate from year-to-year depend sensitivity on the initial conditions. However, the basic response of the climate to a radiative forcing does not when one looks over a long enough period of time that the trend is dominated by this rather than by the year-to-year variability.
    Think of it this way: If I told you that I could predict that the weather here in Rochester on July 4th will be partly cloudy with afternoon shows and highs in the mid-80s, you would rightly ignore me. Even if I predicted that July would be much cooler than normal for July, you would probably be skeptical. However, if I predicted that the climate in July would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 25-30 C warmer than the climate in January, then you would probably admit that this is a reasonable forecast. Some things are easily predictable because they are robust to small changes in initial conditions; others are not.
    What the GCMs do predict, by the way, is that under scenarios of steadily increasing greenhouse gases, it will not be uncommon to be able to identify periods of 10, or even 15 years, in which the least-squares linear fit temperature trend is negative. See here: http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/csi/images/GRL2009_ClimateWarming.pdf

    Even if there is still a slight warming in the past decade, warmers, you lost anyway: It doesn’t correlate with the increasing CO2 level anymore. The AGW hypothesis is garbage. We win, you lose.

    As I noted, you are mischaracterizing what sort of correlation is expected, as studying the GCMs’ output clearly shows. Think of it this way: Do you think that the fact that it is not uncommon to have weeklong periods here in Rochester in April where the temperature trend is negative disproves the notion of the seasonal cycle (which predicts there to be a positive trend in April)? These concepts are not that difficult to understand if you open your mind and think like a scientist instead of an ideologue.

  57. “Peter of Sydney (15:22:10) : It has just snowed overnight in some mountainous parts of Australia in the middle of summer!!! This is very unusual. So much for global warming. Where is it?
    No wonder there are strong gusty cold winds in Canberra today. We are north east of these mountains.

  58. 0.8 degrees over 20 or so years is insignificant both physically and statistically when compared to natural climate variability.
    I can not see why anybody is concerned about 0.8 degrees over 20 years of observation.
    Please explain why we should care about such a small change when much larger changes occur naturally.

  59. A recent article suggested that the idea of a global average temperature was a bit ‘meaningless’. Due to the high temperatures in the southern hemisphere January could be one of the warmest months on record! But it’s a bit like measuring the temperature of your cooker, kettle, fridge and freezer and calculating the average.
    Would it be possible/useful/interesting to split it into two data sets, one for each hemisphere?

  60. One more thing, the charts a mess. Satellite measurements began in 1979, you can not have a 25 year average until 2004.
    The line is drawn from a trough, while 0 is 0.2 deg C higher the following year, making the slope higher. How was a 25 year average or even a 13 year average calculated in 1980 without using surface measurements going back to 1955 or 1967 (they then would have to estimate how those surface temperatures translate to 14,000 ft), both of which serve to increase the slope since it was colder in those years and make it look like more warming from 1979.
    There should be no running average for satellites until 2004, and the anomaly should be based on a 25 year average from 1979-2003 as well, and then we will see how much warming (cooling) there has been. Of course, 6 years is meaningless when talking of climate, but it would show a clear cooling or at least non-warming trend, but the chart should be good for years to come as more data is added.

  61. What I cant understand is why we keep on looking at a 30 year satellite record when we know the 1970s where if not the coldest decade in the 20th century very close to it. Now if we really wanted to look for a serious warming or cooling trend would we not at the very least look for a time frame that included both the warming and cooling faze of the pacific decadal ocillation . Why dont we go back to say 1940 to present and see how much warming or cooling there is.

  62. pft says:

    One more thing, the charts a mess. Satellite measurements began in 1979, you can not have a 25 year average until 2004.

    That may be one good reason why he chose a 25 ***MONTH*** average instead.

  63. Oh the irony! On this day, 18 Jan 2003, we had the firestorm in Canberra when nearly 500 homes were burnt, four people died and hundreds were injured. The current official temperature as at 11.30 am in Canberra today is 15.6C!

  64. I’m sorry, but I don’t see that trend line at all.
    From ’79 – ’98, I see a flat line that looks like an average temp a little below
    the 0.0 base line. Something like -0.1
    I see the spike between ’98 – ’99
    Then a flat line again from ’02 – ’07, which just looks like left overs from the
    ’98 – ’99 spike
    I hate using these stupid trend lines. For one thing, it makes people that are using them try to prove a point, and for another, it gives the impression that
    it will just keep going up until we all burn up.

  65. OK, so the earth has warmed a little. The *real* questions for the climate catastrophists are:
    1. Was the warming caused by natural variation due to oceanic, solar, and galactic cycles? If not, can you measurably subtract the natural variation from your claims of human-caused temperature increases?
    2. If CO2 had any measurable part in the warming, what measurable component of that part is due to a tagged, measurable, human contribution to the observed CO2 concentration increase?

  66. I understand the satellite data is not calibrated from ground stations…but there surely must have been some calibration work done with aerosondes balloons etc at some point?
    My understanding is that the data needs to be adjusted for changes in emissivity of the earths surface – it is easier where the emissivity changes little. This January with such wide snow cover the emissivity must have changed fairly substantially in the NH so i wonder how they calibrate a reading with rapidly changing emissivity and how they calculate the correct emissivity for a given data point on an hour by hour and day by day basis.
    Is anyone aware of the emissivity data that goes with the raw data?

  67. I have not read past Lubos Moti’s post of 17Jan 12:35:07 so someone else may have replied.
    The emissivities of water and ice based on NASA Modis UCSB library data (http://www.icess.ucsb.edu/modis/EMIS/html/em.html ) in the infra-red range of wavelengths 3 to 15 are in excess of 0.96 ie water and ice are close to black bodies. Ice reflects at UV and visible light wavelengths (note need to protect eyes and skin from sunburn on skifields)
    Ice, snow and water will radiate heat to space through the atmospheric infrared window particularly at the poles where the air is very dry.
    I have suggested before that “forcing” is not a sensible term. The driver of heat transfer is temperature difference. The driver of mass transfer is concentration difference which can be expressed by partial pressure differences. The term “Albedo” is meaningless in considerations of heat and mass transfer. Clouds of water and ice molecules will absorb radiation both from the sun and the surface and will re-emit the energy in all direction including space. The density of clouds varies. Some “black” clouds will even absorb most visible light.
    Understanding of climate will be improved if people stopped using jargon. Accountants and lawyers use jargon to confuse and make themselves more important. There is no need for real scientists and technologists to use jargon in discussing climate unless one is a pseudo scientist spinning information to hold onto a job.

  68. If anything, the 25-month smoothing shows a slightly more upward trend than the 13 month. And it shows your critics are absolutely clueless.
    Thanks for the post, Doc.

  69. GeneDoc
    “uh he’s smoothing over 13 or 25 months, not years.”
    Thanks for pointing out my error – haste makes waste.
    David

  70. Louis Hissink (12:31:56) :

    During the 1970’s when I was still an undergraduate I noticed a change in attitudes at University – rigorous testing of knowledge by examination was on the way out…

    Ditto. I was in college in mid 70’s also. That change in science had not quite filtered into most of my core physical science classes yet and I’m greatly thankful for that! I could never learn science by what I read today.

  71. [snip] Maturity is a virtue. Please lighten up. ~dbs, mod.
    .
    So like the above graph shows that there has been global warming.
    You dudes here are totally hell bent against any possiblity that humans have in any way contributed to this.
    SO
    what has caused this warming? eh?
    can you provide quantitative analysis that show where this warming has come from?
    all I see from you dudes are comments like “oh its natural” but to me thats like telling me that God exists. ie a viewpoint biased by preexisting prejudices.
    have any of you dudes calculated how many joules of energy have been inserted into the biosphere by the burning of “buried sunshine”? HM? like maybe that can cause some heat eh?

  72. you dudes complaining about the fact that science being taught in schools is not what is was like when you were there in the 70’s. Toke on bro.
    So like, have you gone back to school now for 4 years to refresh your degree, and thus provide a realistic comparison to your “oh the good ol days were better”

  73. It looks like a .3 C step change in 1998 and nothing else. I wonder why there is a step change there? Are we certain we don’t have a sensor or program reason for the step change?
    So much of the data has been so badly mangled, modified, deleted and fudged from everyone else I don’t bleieve anything anymore.

  74. I have asked what has happened to the 1km temperature that used to be on the AMSU site This showed a rapid rise but then the CHLT data was discontinued in Nov. 2009:
    http://img69.imageshack.us/img69/2104/amsutemptrends.png
    rise is about .1degC/year!
    This data was then replaced with sea surface temperature
    What I find most strange is that so many sceptics consider AMSU data the most accurate – “all the others have been adjusted”. Satellite temperatures must be some of the most tweaked temperatures around – Temperature is not being measured at all it is a microwave proxy, The height of measurement is not a spot height – it is the combined “temperature” from a range of heights.

  75. nunuuq
    Regarding this question:
    have any of you dudes calculated how many joules of energy have been inserted into the biosphere by the burning of “buried sunshine”?
    Ha ha ha, no way no how, the total joules released by all the burning of all the fossil fuels does not amount to a gnats belch in a Hurricane compared to the natural flow into and out of the earth system nor is that enough to have any measurable effect on world temperature, not by orders of magnitude.
    If you are such a true believer invest your money in Beach property in Nunavut, nunuuq prices are still low.

  76. nanuuq
    You used the word ‘thus’ which is out of character with your posts. You’avvin a larf?

  77. It’s a bit like how the CPI is calculated these days. By the time they take out some of the “inflationary” components the official CPI is meaningless. It’s time we went back to just raw numbers without any alteration, and make conclusions based on them, not “value add” data, which is another word of say “corrupted” data.

  78. nanuuq (18:04:35) :
    nanuuq (18:06:59)
    So like, have you gone back to school now for 4 years to refresh your degree, and thus provide a realistic comparison to your “oh the good ol days were better”

    http://newton.umsl.edu/infophys/lsp.html
    Many of the participants in this blog are scientists and engineers with enough education and experience to know the anthropogenic contribution of thermal energy to the planetary envrionment is virtually insignificant in comparison to natural insolation.

    have any of you dudes calculated how many joules of energy have been inserted into the biosphere by the burning of “buried sunshine”? HM? like maybe that can cause some heat eh?

    Try studying some elementary physics…but don’t expect the bloggers to do your schoolwork for you.
    Some Rates of Energy Capture & Use
    http://newton.umsl.edu/infophys/lsp.html

  79. nanuuq (18:06:59) :

    you dudes complaining about the fact that science being taught in schools is not what is was like when you were there in the 70’s. Toke on bro.
    So like, have you gone back to school now for 4 years to refresh your degree, and thus provide a realistic comparison to your “oh the good ol days were better”

    No, but I have subscribed to Science News continually since late 1969. I was a freshman at CMU then and saw a program titled “Our Restless Universe.” Half the content was unfamiliar to me and I considered that unacceptable. A couple years later and “Our Restless Planet” covered all the new plate tectonics and the only thing I didn’t know about was a theory about the formation of the Alps.
    These days I tell Science News about climate change!
    Also, my employer recently hired two recent MIT grads. They’ve worked out
    very well, though they don’t know too much about OS internals, rather
    surprising given Linux is a great place to learn. They also speak normal
    English and capitalize sentences.

  80. nanuuq (18:04:35) :
    So like the above graph shows that there has been global warming.
    You dudes here are totally hell bent against any possiblity that humans have in any way contributed to this.
    SO
    what has caused this warming? eh?

    Warming of this approximate magnitude has occurred before in the MWP, the Roman Warm Period and the Holocene Optimum, all without human effect.
    I’m not going any further with you, nanuuq, because you are way way behind the curve. It only gets worse for you, but I also add that the ipcc and its elite Climate Scientists have simply not been doing real Science.

  81. Joel Shore (16:18:53) :
    This is where it started in this blog, with the fabrication of a troll:
    MJK (08:00:13) :
    It is intersting how Dr Spencer has shifted his running average from a 13 month running average to a new 25 month average. This conveniently “hides” the return in 2009 to well above average temperatures since the cooler (but still warmer than average) year of 2008.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/05/december-uah-global-temperature-anomaly-down-by-almost-half/#more-14851
    —————————————————————–
    It was complete fabrication for MJK to say this. There never was any hiding of any incline. As can be seen there was a slightly greater incline with the 25 month than the 13 month. But MJK (whoever he is) claimed the opposite.
    ——————————————————————-
    “It only takes a spark, remember, to set off a forest fire. A careless or wrongly placed word out of your mouth can do that. By our speech we can ruin the world, turn harmony to chaos, throw mud on a reputation, send the whole world up in smoke and go up in smoke with it, smoke right from the pit of hell.”

  82. nanuuq (18:04:35) :
    So like the above graph shows that there has been global warming.
    You dudes here are totally hell bent against any possiblity that humans have in any way contributed to this.

    Huh, really? So like you haven’t been paying attention.

  83. “One of the great things about the internet is people can post anything they want, no matter how stupid….”
    Having been one of your “stupid ones”, I stand by my criticism. I think it was poor judgment on your part to change a longstanding practice that was your choice to begin with. One of the most damning charges against the AGW “true believers” is that they change the rules of their temperature recording game as they go along, leaving us comparing apples and oranges. I still do not understand why you did it. What was the harm in letting the chips fall as you originally saw fit?
    CH

  84. R. Craigen (15:55:53) :
    > I’ve noticed this tendency to smooth over intervals of length n years + 1 month. What is the basis for this?
    I think the main reason is to keep the two graphs in phase. For example, the January 2009 monthly value represents the temperature of each day (or hour or satellite pass or derivation of one of those) averaged over the month. The 13 month average includes the six months before and six after. If the graph used six before and five after, then that average would be centered around the first of January, not the middle. While that’s not much of an issue on a graph, it becomes a bit awkward in a table. If the table lists month&year, month average, -6:+5 average, then you couldn’t use month&year as the X coordinate in a graph without a phase (time shift) adjustment.
    So I think the 13 month average is a bit of a compromise. At least it has all the months, something an 11 month average wouldn’t.
    Now one thing “13 month average” might imply is to use the average of the end months. Some weather data does that to come up with a daily average temperature by summing the temperatures of each hour from 0100 to 2300 and half of the temperatures at 0000 and 2400.
    I don’t think that’s the trick here, but I’m not certain.

  85. Claude Harvey (18:56:56) :
    I think it was poor judgment on your part to change a longstanding practice that was your choice to begin with.
    I will agree with this. Don’t open yourself up to unnecessary criticism.

  86. nanuuq says:

    have any of you dudes calculated how many joules of energy have been inserted into the biosphere by the burning of “buried sunshine”? HM? like maybe that can cause some heat eh?

    Actually, that calculation has been done and the answer is that the amount of heat being produced is pretty insignificant in comparison to what we receive from the sun. However, the global warming is not due to this direct heating but is rather is due to the changing composition of the atmosphere and how that changes the radiative balance by “trapping” more of the energy that the earth radiates back out into space (i.e., increasing the magnitude of the greenhouse effect).
    While I agree with you (and disagree with most of the other posters here) on the significance of the problem, it is important that this problem be presented in a scientifically-accurate way.

  87. Louis Hissink (12:31:56) :
    Thank you for your contribution. I find it interesting that you put climate science in the same category as geology and astrophysics. Is Climatology indeed so well established and exalted scientific discipline?
    It is unfortunate that most AGW faithful would read your comments in hostile spirits. For them any criticism, however minor, logical and reasonable, of the validity of the AGW and credibility of climate science is ‘denialism’ and a heresy against the prevailing orthodoxy.
    While denouncing climate skeptics as ‘flat-earthers’, the AGW believers are trying to enforce a ‘scientific consensus’ similar to the geo-centric model that became the standard description of the universe for nearly two thousand years. Most people don’t know that the true order of the planetary system, the helio-centric model, was speculated about by Aristarchus as early as 3rd Century BC. Yet the geo-centric model triumphed and thrived for so long because, despite its growing complexity and inaccuracy for centuries, the science was based on the authority of Aristotle, Ptolemy, the Church and the consensus of the times.
    It became a matter of faith that humanity was at the centre of the universe. Like our “carbon footprint” being at the centre of so much of what goes as climate science.

  88. ‘Hide the incline’ rapidly bobbed up here in Australia. But Dr Spencer seems to have its measure. One query, probably a naive one from an onlooker whose statistics was largely confined to many chi-squared tests in genetics:
    (a) why does Dr Spencer’s 13 month running average seem to start six months earlier than the 25 month running average?
    (b) why does the 13 month running average also finish six months later than the 25 month running average?
    Are these end effects? Also is there any significance in the fact that the running average values in months, 13 and 25, are of the form 12n + 1 where 12 = number of months per year? Apologies to the many readers for whom these questions are doubtless naive ones.
    Feature (b) was seized on by Spencer’s detractors here – the 13 month graph was going up at the time (El Nino I presume). They did not mention that his 25 month smoothing reduced the previously dominating 1998 El Nino temperature peak.

  89. [quoute Luboš Motl (12:35:07) :]
    Well, I would be more likely to guess that UAH overestimates the increase, especially the very recent one.
    The January warmest record for the brightness surface temperature – on Jan 15th, 2010 – is now minus 16.29 deg Celsius, almost 0.2 deg Celsius warmer than the previous record I can see (but it’s conceivable that they were warmer days in January 1998 that I can’t access).
    [/quote]
    I see what you’re saying Luboš, but I’ll point out that UAH and RSS data tend to be in close agreement with each other. This suggests that if there is a problem, it’s not in the processing of the data, but in the raw satellite data itself.
    Also recall that the UAH values are cross-checked against radiosonde weather balloons. So the error would have to be in both the satellites and the balloons.
    I’m not saying this is impossible, but it may be worth checking the UAH hemispherical data first. We’re having an El Nino right now. The northern hemisphere had this effect hidden somewhat my a simultaneous Northern Oscillation, but the southern hemisphere is getting the full brunt of the El Nino. Perhaps temperatures there are high enough to account for the current high global temperatures.
    As to the raw satellite data, I’m working on parsing this up and will share my results with everyone as I go along. I’ve documented my current progress here: http://magicjava.blogspot.com/2010/01/dangit-more-climate-stuff-uah-and-rss.html
    If anyone wants to lend a hand with this, I’ll happily accept the help. 🙂

  90. So like, i’m new to this, and only a couple of you have been of any help
    thanks D. Patterson, but it will take me a bit to read that stuff
    tho none of you really answered my questsions.
    I’m sorry i’m not smart enough for you guys 🙁

  91. One of the great things about the internet is people can post anything they want, no matter how stupid, and lots of people who are incapable of critical thought will simply accept it…..something I feared I would be accused of for sure after I posted the December update.
    It is a typhoon in a cup to make anything out of this 25 month smoothing. It was done for a reason. Smoothing on any time scale is perfectly legitimate.
    We all reveal who we are and what we know when we talk. We create our own reputations.
    I think you’re a good guy Mr. Spencer.
    ————————————————————
    Maybe we should be spending our energies on getting help to Haiti instead of this nothing issue. And also figuring out why the airport in Haiti is full of planes loaded with relief supplies yet it is not reaching the people who need it.

  92. Tony (12:23:12) :
    Well the 25 year average does seem to hide the incline in the last year or so, as compared to the 13 month line. Perhaps Dr Spencer should publish future graphs showing both lines

    Yes. And he should have anticipated the criticism he’d receive by not showing both at the point where he switched. (A peer reviewer would have suggested this.)

  93. nanuuq (19:55:57) :
    You didn’t seem to be asking for help. You seem to be condescending and sarcastic.
    If you had a different approach you may have found a lot of people helping more than you needed.

  94. [quote: nanuuq (18:04:35) :]
    So like the above graph shows that there has been global warming.
    You dudes here are totally hell bent against any possiblity that humans have in any way contributed to this.
    SO
    what has caused this warming? eh?
    [/quote]
    Sorry I didn’t see your questions earlier nanuuq. I’ll try to answer them as best I can.
    First, I don’t think there is a “universal sceptic viewpoint”. Some think sunspots or cosmic rays are causing it, some think CO2 but not at anywhere near the levels claimed by the IPCC. Different skeptics have different viewpoints.
    My own opinion is it’s mainly clouds and some secondary “other stuff”. Cloud cover has decreased in step with temperatures going up, and at just about the rate needed to account for the change in temperatures. I personally think reduced cosmic rays account for the reduced cloud cover.
    I do believe man has an effect on the environment. This effect comes through urban heat islands and pollution like black carbon. I believe the IPCC greatly underestimates the effects of both of these conditions. This is the “other stuff” I referred to above.
    As too AGW, my personal belief is changes in CO2, CH4, and water vapor account for _zero_ percent of the changes in temperatures. There’s no historical evidence to suggest either CO2 or CH4 drives climate. And the change in water vapor seems to follow the changes in cosmic rays and the Earth’s distance from the sun, not changes in CO2 and CH4. Specifically, the claimed “feedback loop” of globally increased water vapor caused by increased CO2 that’s supposed to cause all the “catastrophic warming” simply doesn’t exist.
    So that’s my opinion. If you want to discuss it further, I can show you various charts and graphs and papers that explain why I have that opinion.

  95. This whole looking for a signal in the annual data is absurd anyway. The GH effect is most significant on a daily timescale. If it weren’t for our atmosphere, we could look forward to days similar to the moon’s. So, the GH effect should have its radiative effect in the daily noise as well as the smoothed signals. If we were in trouble, we would know for sure by now.

  96. “Note how the new 25-month smoother minimizes the warm 1998 temperature spike, which is the main reason why I switched to the longer averaging time. If anything, this ‘hides the decline’ since 1998…”
    It might be advisable to continue providing both running averages on the same graph for a while longer to re-assure the reader. The AGW faithful will continue making an issue out of this. No matter that it’s an argument from ingorance.

  97. Dr A Burns (15:18:59) :
    “What does it matter whether there’s warming or cooling ? The issue is whether man can influence it any more than King Canute was able to influence the tides.”

    This indeed the crux of the matter. The warmists with all their billions of research money appear to have avoided this problem like the plague.
    Its just so much easier for them to write a program and manipulate some data. And since most folks think these programs are capable of foretelling the future, why bother doing any basic research, when that runs the risk of not supporting their story.

  98. Wondering Aloud (18:15:06) :
    “……It looks like a .3 C step change in 1998 and nothing else. I wonder why there is a step change there? Are we certain we don’t have a sensor or program reason for the step change?…..”
    That step change….
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/plot/uah/from:1979/to:1997/trend/plot/uah/from:2000/trend
    ….. is not compatible with CO2 increasing at a continuous, uniform rate of about 15 ppm/decade since 1979 being the overwhelming cause of the temperature increase 1979-2010.
    From page 8: ‘Who is Maurice Strong?’ National Review Sept 1, 1997 by Ronald Bailey (worth reading for an insight into the institutional origins of it all),
    “…..Furthermore, more accurate satellite measurements show no increase in the average global temperature over the last two decades….”.
    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1282/is_n16_v49/ai_19722906/?tag=content;col1
    It was that following El Niño year, together with Mann’s ‘hockey stick’, which gave the AGW hypothesis the necessary boost to last this long.

  99. nanuuq (20:34:25) :
    like dude, i was just askin
    whats causing it to get warmer?
    i just want to know

    Well, a degree is not exactly a perceptible difference. So, we trust the thermometers, but given the analysis done showing that high latitudes, where it is colder, are dropping out of the record, and being filled in with jungles (see chiefio.wordpress.com – The Bolivia Effect), I would say that whether it is actually warmer or not is not exactly a settled matter. I mean, thinking about the amount of work that goes into averaging the temperature of the Earth, and the amount of any possible errors resulting from improper sampling, you know, like, it is totally not farfetched that warming is a local event to some areas.
    But, dude, even if it were, that doesn’t mean the lack of explanation means the only explanation is CO2. In fact, it seems the natural variations of climate are very poorly understood. If you wish, ask someone how it is possible for the Earth to plummet into glacial ages lasting 100,000 years with CO2 levels similar to what they are now. Or how Earth warms up before CO2 starts outgassing from the ocean (and why they expect that effect would disappear after CO2 levels rise).

  100. nanuuq (18:04:35) : | Reply w/ Link
    “So like the above graph shows that there has been global warming.
    You dudes here are totally hell bent against any possiblity that humans have in any way contributed to this.”

    Wrong impression. A lot of things humans do change climate. Cultivation, forest fires, turning into asphalt and cement swaths of land, changing rivers, damning staits etc etc. and way downthe list, a small contribution from human induced CO2.
    SO
    what has caused this warming? eh?
    can you provide quantitative analysis that show where this warming has come from?

    It is not an easy problem, but we are not the ones who are trying to stampede the western world to do hara kiri, and the AGW CO2 camp which should provide the solid science, has only handwaving arguments from faulty computer outputs that have been already falsified. That is the problem.
    all I see from you dudes are comments like “oh its natural” but to me thats like telling me that God exists. ie a viewpoint biased by preexisting prejudices.

    I admit I have a preexisting prejudice that the sun exists and that the earth with its atmosphere turning around it gets what is described as weather and climate.
    have any of you dudes calculated how many joules of energy have been inserted into the biosphere by the burning of “buried sunshine”? HM? like maybe that can cause some heat eh?
    Have you? Lets see your numbers.
    People are measuring it and part of it is called “the urban heat island effect.

  101. nanuuq (20:34:25) :
    like dude, i was just askin
    whats causing it to get warmer?
    i just want to know

    Well, Kevin Trenberth “just wants to know” much more than you do. The great ipcc Climate Scientist wants to know why it isn’t getting warmer. He’s called the divergence of “global mean” temp. from CO2 concentrations a “travesty”, and is quite upset about it.
    So, we’re sorry, but he comes first.

  102. Why does the 25 month running average stop at the beginning of 2009?
    Shouldn’t it be the ‘last 25 months’ which would therefore end at the last complete month — December 2009.

  103. Norm in Calgary (22:01:36) :
    Shouldn’t it be the ‘last 25 months’ which would therefore end at the last complete month — December 2009.
    It is correct to center the 25-month curve on a time 12.5 months ago.

  104. [quote Norm in Calgary (22:01:36) :]
    Why does the 25 month running average stop at the beginning of 2009?
    Shouldn’t it be the ‘last 25 months’ which would therefore end at the last complete month — December 2009.
    [/quote]
    The smoothed value is usually the midpoint of the interval being smoothed, so the first and last time periods are usually cut off.
    You can read a nice article about data smoothing here:
    http://www.climate4you.com/DataSmoothing.htm

  105. nanuuq (20:34:25) :

    like dude, i was just askin
    whats causing it to get warmer?
    i just want to know

    Oh, why didn’t you say so? It’s simple – the science isn’t settled and no on knows for sure. If we did there would be a lot few blogs on the subject.
    BTW, it’s not getting warmer, that pretty much ended a decade or so ago and lately it’s been getting cooler. No big deal, it’s happened many times through history.
    Consider buying a copy of Strunk & White. It would point out that your “Like, dude, ” is unnecessary.

  106. Norm in Calgary (22:01:36) :

    Why does the 25 month running average stop at the beginning of 2009?
    Shouldn’t it be the ‘last 25 months’ which would therefore end at the last complete month — December 2009.

    It covers the 12 months before a data point and the 21 months after, e.g. the Dec. 2008 data point covers Dec 2007 to Dec 2009. Any months later than Dec 2008 don’t have 12 months data going forward. I.e. Jan 2009 data is not yet available.

  107. nanuuq (18:04:35) :
    inserted into the biosphere by the burning of “buried sunshine”?
    I saw that show on Science Channel too. Catchy little phrase ‘buried solar energy’, or whatever they called ‘fossil fuels’. They didn’t give any data for that hypothesis. But it sounds right to some people—I guess—burning buried solar energy thus adding to the solar energy already in the atmosphere and thus warming the planet. They didn’t say anything about the cooling of the last 5 years though. Alex Filippenko had a tone of voice that didn’t seem like he subscribed to it completely.
    They must have been talking about coal when they said ‘fossil fuels’ since it is possible oil and natural gas may not be fossil fuels, or, ‘buried solar energy’.

  108. nanuuq (20:34:25) :
    like dude, i was just askin
    whats causing it to get warmer?

    You can read up on ocean currents, the sun, galactic cosmic rays, UHI, and volcanoes. But it hasn’t been warming for about 15 years running now. So quit thinking global warming is happening.
    And for the last 5 years there has been cooling.

  109. J.Peden (21:58:38) :
    The great ipcc Climate Scientist wants to know why it isn’t getting warmer. He’s called the divergence of “global mean” temp. from CO2 concentrations a “travesty”, and is quite upset about it.

    Alas, poor Trenberth. He doesn’t recognize an object in motion when he sees it. It’s really quite simple: The warming caused a delayed release of trapped C02, and when the warming stopped, the C02 is the object in motion.
    Throw in increased Volcanic Activity associated with a long Solar Minimum and it’s liable to keep right on rising.
    Even Gore almost got it in his movie when he said “C02 rises with temperature as you can see from this graph…well, not really, it’s complicated” wnen watching the Ice Core data line drawn.
    Silly Gore, tricks are for kids.

  110. Dear magicjava, yes, you gave good arguments why such errors are unlikely. So it may have something to do with the actual surface vs. above surface difference.
    BTW I realized that the reflected IR radiation from the Sun is really negligible relatively to the thermal one from the Earth, so this can’t be the issue even if there were something wrong with its calculation.

  111. If somebody posts their data and their smoothing algorithm ( I prefer the algorithm to the verbal description of the algorithm), then they can’t
    “hide a decline” or “hide an increase” at least not for long. Any “tricks” they
    pull will be readily apparent as people will dissect the data and the code to
    to show how the choices made in the filter create a different visual message..
    OR NOT. The only time we have issues is when the chart maker hides his data and his code and people have to guess ( like St Mc and roman and UC and jeanS had to guess) how the smooth curve came out of the spiky data.

  112. Norm in Calgary (22:01:36) :

    Why does the 25 month running average stop at the beginning of 2009?
    Shouldn’t it be the ‘last 25 months’ which would therefore end at the last complete month — December 2009.

    My guess would be because a finite impulse response (FIR) filter, which is what a moving average amounts to, has a delay of half its length.
    photon without a Higgs (20:11:54) :

    Smoothing on any time scale is perfectly legitimate.

    This is not universally true. It depends upon what you are doing and why. You also need to take into account any artifacts that result from your smoothing operation should you choose to use the results in further processing (FIR smoothing is acausal, for example, which can be an issue).
    I agree, however, that there’s no real reason a 25 month smooth should come under any particular scrutiny since he clearly pointed out what he did, why, and what the result was. For display purposes, who really cares as long as we have the explanation?
    Mark

  113. @ Louis Hissink (12:31:56) :
    yes, there is an impossible political goal to ‘produce’ more ‘scientists’ by filling up the universities with people who are best in learning something by heart and regurgitating it when asked. For years I attended at interviews on people to be hired. If the vacant job needed someone who was able to apply his knowledge in new situations we checked accordingly by stating nonsense once in a while. If there was no opposition, guess what. Precarious is that ‘filling up’ appears to work in the wrong direction because the ‘good’ people who treat learning as some non-formal activity are graded out of the universities.

  114. nanuuq (20:34:25) :
    like dude, i was just askin
    whats causing it to get warmer?
    i just want to know

    Hmmm, maybe we should start a fund dedicated to providing people like nanuuq with a copy of Glenn Beck’s book, “How to Argue with Idiots”, so they could have an authoritative source of answers to their questions right at the bedside, and wouldn’t have to get up and waste their time coming over here.

  115. Thanks for the various thoughtful replies to my post – the problem with the deductive sciences is that they tend to fall into intellectual cul de sacs and it’s these that I think Kuhn was thinking of when he introduced the idea of paradigm shifts – one dogma replacing another one not my evidence but from the older guard dying out and being replaced by the young turks with the replacement theory. That can only happen with theories that aren’t anchored in physical reality and it is one big problem – especially in geology.
    It is telling that the Lyell changed geology by artful rhetoric, one of his supporters complimenting him on the fact that he could write a text on geology without once mentioning “stratigraphy”.
    So also with climate science – where the rhetoric is now couched in maths and stats and complex computer models – it’s technically sophisticated rhetoric that we are confronted with, not evidence per se. And this approach has been with us since Plato.
    How the heck do you counter an entrenched belief system that is AGW?
    I suspect if the Almighty returned they would interpet it as another denialist plot and thus to be automatically rejected.
    So while it is excellent that we are now discovering the real extent of “creative science” (as in creative accounting), that discovery may not necessarily have any effect on the climatically devout if past experience is any indication.
    Do we then have to come to a Mexican stand-off and wait for them to lose interest in AGW to inflict us with another bout of intellectual pestilence, or is it possible that public opinion, if swayed, will cause them to blink.
    That Roy can receive emails of the type he described above in spite of the facts suggests this battle is far from over. They are Strongly led, you know.

  116. Cement a friend (17:27:59) : I have suggested before that “forcing” is not a sensible term. The driver of heat transfer is temperature difference.
    You know, I’ve repeatedly asked the folks who use the term “forcing” to tell me what the SI units are for it, and answer came there none…
    Until a reputed phsical driver of the climate has a real physical lable with a real phsical unit of measure (be it S.I. or Imperial or even that strange not quite Imperial “customary” that we use in the USA) it is just so much phlogiston explaining why we are going to all burn up…
    Per the graph:
    Stock traders look at a 100 of these kinds of charts a day. Price with 2 moving averages or more. Personally, my basic chart uses price and 3 moving avereage ( typically 20, 40, 60 period or 25, 50, 75 period, but sometimes especially on hourly charts, 12, 24, 36 period. Those numbers are not randomly picked. With about 100 – 200 data points available in most graphs with reasonable length, they give the best indications.)
    Now stock traders have spent untold millions of hours finding the fastest way to get meaning out of those charts (some would say ‘fabricating meaning’ 😉 that can be used for trades that determine if they eat or not this week. (for some of us, more literally than for others…)
    What they tend to do is look at moving average crossovers as signals of change of short term direction. They also look at a kind of “connect the dots” for context. This is all called “technical analysis” (as opposed ot “fundamental analysis” that looks at income statements…)
    Using those tools, I would look at the chart above and see a big spike in 1998 (potentially a “news driven event” – i.e. flash in the pan and gone) but often indicative of a “blow off top” – whatever was driving upward dissipated in a final “POOF!” kind of like a pile of flamables burns slowly then picks up speed just before running out of fuel to drive it…
    But the interesting one I see is when you connect the tops of the temperature excursions with each other (fitting a trend line to the tops, not the mean) and do the same for the bottoms. We find a nice upward trend line to the tops in the early 1/2 of the chart, that is violated to the upside in 1998, then we have a new trend line to the tops that does not advance. Lay a line on the tops of the 13 or the 25 SMA lines after ’98 and in the first case it slopes down, in the second it is flat. Now look at the bottoms. Individual years have a big spike to the downside in temperatures after ’98. (Like ’04 and ’08) In years before the spike the downside excursions are small and narrow in comparison with only ’89 looking similar (though with a fast recovery). A “connect the dots’ on the bottoms also shows two segments with a kink. Upsloping before 1998, but after ’98 we have a downward slope on the direct tempertature bottoms, an almost flat slope on the 13 SMA line, and a still upward slope on the 25 SMA line (Simple Moving Average). THAT is an inflection. The prior trend is broken.
    “Failure to advance” to the upside. Stronger excursion on “down days” to the downside. Top trend dead flat to downward sloping. Bottom trends working off energy and with temp data moving downward first, pulling the SMA’s in order after it. This puppy is in rollover mode after a strong move up.
    Can you apply these “stock trader techniques” to temperature data? I have no basis to assert you can. (Heck, a lot of folks assert you can’t apply them to stocks! ;-0 ) But I think they reflect the underlying energy of a complex chaotic system and do let you see what is happening to trends.
    In some ways, they seem to me to be a way to get a first and second derivative out of really messy data without any formula. But they also are helpful in “betting the right way”. So I’d look at this and ‘revisualize’ those trend lines (top, bottome, etc.) as a smoother version of this data along with a derivative that would show an inflection. But with the time scales on this graph, it is looking like one that will take 20 years to run and might be 5 years from now before it was clearly in evidence (by which time ‘the trade is over’; at least for stocks, you must trade on too little evidence if you are to make the trade in time… )
    What I would do here is put on a 13, 26, 39 SMA stack (well, really, I’d use a 12, 24, 36 for stocks, but I understand the desire to avoid harmonics of the seasonal calendar with the 13…) and then look at the “roll over” of the stack. We have a nice “weave” of the temp with the 13 and the 24. Adding a longer term SMA like 39 as well would let us see if the two faster ones had “crossed over” it to the downside ( I think they have, but the spike makes my ‘visual integration’ a bit higher error band… real numbers would work better). When the two shorter faster SMAs have crossed the faster one to the downside, and the trend lines have gone flat and kinked downward, that’s a classic top inflection.

    The driver of mass transfer is concentration difference which can be expressed by partial pressure differences. The term “Albedo” is meaningless in considerations of heat and mass transfer. Clouds of water and ice molecules will absorb radiation both from the sun and the surface and will re-emit the energy in all direction including space. The density of clouds varies. Some “black” clouds will even absorb most visible light.

    Hurrah, hurray!!! Another person who wants to see the real physics involved, not just one side effect (temperature). It is energy and mass transfers that matter, not the temperature! (In stock trading “volume” is the “mass” equivalent and it is the “voume” that tells the real story…)
    Until we start looking at quantity of energy moved in the mass of water that just turned to snow in the N. Hemisphere and how much of THAT got dumped out the upper atmosphere to space, we are just counting how many coins we have in our purse and not looking at the denominations…

  117. nanuuq (20:34:25) :
    i just want to know.

    J.Peden (00:53:20) :
    Hmmm, maybe we should start a fund dedicated to providing people like nanuuq with a copy of Glenn Beck’s book, “How to Argue with Idiots”, so they could have an authoritative source of answers to their questions right at the bedside, and wouldn’t have to get up and waste their time coming over here.
    Assuming his plea is genuine, then he has taken first step on the road to learning. He is probably young, so perhaps a little understanding is called for.
    After all adults and scientists often think they know everything and aren’t afraid of telling young folk so.

  118. Dotto (00:54:40) : Looking at the UAH data (http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/) I find that the lower atmosphere at 4,4 km (ch05), is extremely hot while the upper part at 17 km (ch09) is extremely cold now compared to the 20 year averages.
    Does somebody have any theory on what is going on?

    My theory, that is admittedly “idiot stupid simple” is that the top is radiating the energy away to space, then can sink, while the bottom is still picking up heat from the ocean to transfer to space eventually (i.e. rise). We’re seeing a giant heat transfer from the ocean to space (temperature gradient).
    In other words: This is what it looks like in the early stages of getting darned cold starting from pretty warm. And it’s a decade scale process, so “patience grasshopper”…

  119. david elder (19:41:52) : (a) why does Dr Spencer’s 13 month running average seem to start six months earlier than the 25 month running average?
    (b) why does the 13 month running average also finish six months later than the 25 month running average?

    You need 13 periods of data to calculate a 13 long Simple Moving Average. You need 25 periods of data to calculate a 25 long SMA. 25-13= 12. The 13 can start at 13, the 25 must wait until time 25 for the first data point.
    Now I’d *guess* that the 25 was offset to align the peaks ( I find it a bit disconcerting, since in stock trading we depend on the time offset to be part of the signal, but i digress) so take that 12 and split it between each end, you get 6 periods of ‘extra’ on each end of the 13 SMA that is not available in the 25 SMA due to the number of data points needed to calculate each.
    Also is there any significance in the fact that the running average values in months, 13 and 25, are of the form 12n + 1 where 12 = number of months per year?
    I would *assume* that it is to avoid exact harmonics of the seasons, but it is also possible that the desire was to avoid ‘edge effects’ where your last period is contaminated by things like “updates” that come in later, so you “go one further” then ignore the last period. Both of these are speculation on my part as to motive.

  120. To Nanuuq’s question about why he should accept that it’s been warming due to natural reasons: Yes, difficult to accept. But there is evidence: The warming trend started in 1850.
    The massive emissions of CO2 due to a lot of industrialization only started in 1950. So there was already a lot of warming (with some cooling periods intermingled) BEFORE we increased the CO2 content significantly. This is a strong indicator for natural warming and cooling even if we cannot exactly explain the mechanism at the moment. Svensmark and Kirkby are trying to find out whether fluctuations in cosmic rays are the reason (via influencing cloud cover).
    To Joel Shore: Hi Joel! I was just having fun and wanted to stir the debate up. In five years we can argue again, my bet is the cooling becomes more significant.

  121. E.M.Smith (03:41:02) :
    Dotto (00:54:40) : Looking at the UAH data (http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/) I find that the lower atmosphere at 4,4 km (ch05), is extremely hot while the upper part at 17 km (ch09) is extremely cold now compared to the 20 year averages.
    Does somebody have any theory on what is going on?

    To be a little more specific Channel 5 reads the middle Troposhere and through mathematics they figure out a Lower Troposhpere Temp. Channel 9 reads the Lower Stratosphere a completely different layer of the atmoshpere. This can be found on WUWT in an older article by Dr. Spencer or on his own site at:
    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/01/how-the-uah-global-temperatures-are-produced/

  122. The only problem with moving to the longer 25 month moving average is that the data for 2009/2010 are delayed for a year. So, if Spencer expects the coming year to be very warm, then he is hiding (or delaying) the increase. As several have suggested in this posting, the best solution is to plot both the 13 and 25 month moving averages.
    [Just a brief reminder: The monthly data is there on the same graph for all to see. RT – Mod]

  123. MartinGAtkins (03:32:56) :
    nanuuq (20:34:25) :
    “i just want to know.”
    Assuming his plea is genuine, then he has taken first step on the road to learning. He is probably young, so perhaps a little understanding is called for
    Martin, I’m assuming that you didn’t read the thread. I have a rule with people who act like trolls. I give them a good enough answer and see what they do with it. nanuuq ignored mine and others and just kept up this infantile refrain. That’s when anything goes for me. Even at that, nanuuq would in fact benefit from Beck’s book.

  124. The great thing about the internet is that anyone can download the meta-data and do thier own analysis. Why rely on Anthony, Steve McIntyre, Willis, NOAA, CRU, or GISS. With open source anyone with the desire to find the truth can do it themselves. With that in mind, cries of “hiding the decline”, or “hiding the increase” are somewhat hallow. As Anthony says many times to people here, “Do the math yourself.”

  125. Once again, I’d like to draw attention that even within these comments we can see there is an element who refuse on principle to believe there’s been any warming. This isn’t skepticism, this is just playing tommy opposite.
    Roy quite clearly believes there’s been warming, but that natural events are the main player.
    The big issue for skeptics is: will it continue, and can we/should we do anything about it.

  126. Thanks for trying to answer Christopher, but I don’t think that answers why the apparent step change in the UAH satellite data. I agree there is not a correlation between carbon dioxide rise and temperature rise evident.

  127. The “incline” is obvious… Just look between 1995 and 2000. That’s where the entire “incline” resides!
    UAH

  128. I appreciate Dr. Spencer diligent work, and his ability to be critical of HIMSELF!
    However, I have a minor complaint here. If I take the zero line, and then lay out the data as a plus/minus variation on that line, I will obtain something akin to a “normal distribution” curve. Then I have a “standard deviation”.
    Then I can plot a band of 3 SD’s and see if the data is trending beyond that.
    If it is NOT then from a statistics basis WE CANNOT SAY THERE IS A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE.
    Why can no one see this?

  129. Excellent article Dr. Spencer. I really don’t see what increase either 13 or 25 month smoothing hides. As such it’s clear that you’re hiding nothing either way with your analysis as it’s just a rolling average with either a 25 month or 13 month range. One could use any range one wants to I suppose.
    Besides wasn’t the “hide the decline” in the Hockey Stick Graphs/Analysis as confirmed in the Climategate emails pointing to selectively deleted “dead tree ring entrails” data chopped off the graph and the tail end lifted up to the thermometer data line? That’s hiding data by removing it. A smoothing doesn’t hide data, and certainly doesn’t hide anything when the data is presented along with it! It just shows an abstract mathematically smoothed line; which is a lot different than deleting data and “manNipulating” it with arbitrary values to enable “hockey stick soothsaying of whatever was wanted to fit the AGW Hypothesis”.
    I’m curious what information is gleaned from the selection of different durations though from the perspective of climate science. What do the smoothing lines suggest to a climate scientist? I’d like to know more and if you could detail more about that I’d appreciate it.
    In addition, as a computer and systems scientist I’d like to know more about the reasoning of using various statistical methods in “climate science” as many different methods are used and there seems to be much debate on their use and how appropriate they are for various purposes.
    Might I ask what software you use to generate the graph? What is the specific data source? What are your equations (in detail please)? How can someone verify your computations if they so choose to?
    pwl, dedicated to open source science where verifiable and auditable evidence rules the day
    http://PathsToKnowledge.net

  130. Not having done the math, I ask here.
    I find myself wondering what happens as you extend the running average beyond 25 months to much longer periods… the smoothing line would tend towards becoming a straight line that would coincide with the trend line, wouldn’t it?
    If that is the case the trend lines shown in various climate graphs can all be accused of “hiding” or “distorting the raw” data, yes? The point is what is the use of each statistical technique and is that use clearly spelled out so that a full audit can be carried out, isn’t it?
    Honest science would spell out the exact steps just like is taught in high school science and math classes. Show the work is being honest.
    That is why the Hockey Stick Graph work by Mann et. al. is so infuriating, they didn’t’ show their work – and it has taken a massive effort to get them to show their work – which included “deleting valid” data that in fact seems to have contradicted their AGW Hypothesis to the point of falsifying the correlation between “dead tree ring entrails” and thermometer temperature data readings.
    In my view trust in climate science can only be reestablished via open source science with all the work steps shown publicly available for auditing.
    pwl, dedicated to open source science where verifiable and auditable evidence rules the day
    http://PathsToKnowledge.net

  131. This may have been addressed, but since satellite measures the LT which is far removed from the surface, how can it be possible to compare anything but the trend?
    For instance, the baseline difference between HadCRUT and UAH is .146. Many graphs use this anomaly based measurement to infer there is good agreement between the two and many I’d assume think there is a correlative relationship between the two products.
    Yet, the absolute temperature bears no resemblance between the LT and the surface, so how can it be said anything other than the trend is similar?
    If as E.M. Smith and others are saying is true, that being the GHCN is warming the present while cooling the past resulting in a large warm bias for the last 20-30 years compared to the 20’s through the 40’s, how is it that satellite and surface records for the last 30 years are considered “similar” in absolute terms?
    Aren’t we talking apples and oranges here? In other words, if satellites were available 70 years ago, would it show the same change in absolute temperatures as the surface? What is the theoretical difference in temperature between the LT and the surface?
    To me, to say satellite and surface data is similar using what appears to be a baseline calculation based on a corrupted surface station baseline (removing cold stations for the last ~20 years) is completely meaningless.
    What am I missing?

  132. E.M.Smith (03:15:43) : Thanks for your comments. I trade stocks rarely but do have an idea about so-called technical analysis. I have a chart of multiple moving averages 5,10,15 day short term (green colour) and 30,40,50 day longer term (red colour). The trends show clearly with the green on top in a rising market and the red on top in a falling market. The cross overs are useful for buy sell decisions. I have another chart as you indicate for the high and low peak trends giving tram lines for selling at or near the top line and buying at or near the bottom. I made something like the latter chart for rainfall to clearly identify wet and dry periods. In our area it clearly shows no change in the pattern over 100years ie no rise or decline. It was very wet in the 1890’s, severe drought 1900 to 1912, which has been replicated to a lesser extent 1998 to 2009. The rainfall pattern has been linked to ENSO. One would expect higher day temperatures in drought times because of less cloud cover but this could be offset by lower night temperatures. Average temperatures particularly global temperatures provide no useful information for farmers and graziers.
    I would suggest to magicjava (19:54:39) : that he split day and night temperatures and look for some diversion

  133. Mark T (23:36:24) :
    Smoothing on any time scale is perfectly legitimate.
    This is not universally true. It depends upon what you are doing and why.

    my point is that people are took what a troll said about 25 months and made it an issue.

  134. Joel Shore (16:18:53), if the argument was only over the radiative effect of Co2 this blog wouldn’t exist. Most here agree with a ~1C temperature increase per doubling of Co2 which would mostly be beneficial. Warm is good, cold is bad. Living in Rochester I suspect you’d much rather experience that 80F summer day then just about any cold winter day.
    It’s the feedbacks that are in question.

  135. @John Hooper (05:13:27)
    Maybe it will continue. Maybe it won’t. NO-ONE can say. And that ‘no-one’ certainly includes “scientists” using grossly simplified computer models based on cherry picked and distorted data and using algorithms that have been conconcted specifically to ‘prove’ the basic AGW hypothesis.
    And even more so, the ‘no-one’ includes scientifically illiterate and dishonest NGOs, media and politicians who want to scare people into making donations, sell more newspapers and / or hugely raise taxes whilst grandstanding that they are ‘saving the world’.
    The big issue for the AGW True Believers is: in the face of the fact that the climate “Just Keeps on Doin’ Whatta Climate’s Gotta Do”, can you justify pouring trillions of dollars into ‘solutions’ which are extremely likely to destroy the economies of the developed world and deny hope to millions in abject poverty in the third world?
    Especially when evaluating the proposed ‘remedies’ for the alleged ‘problem’, not on the basis of “avoiding tonnes of CO2 emissions” but on the basis of avoiding temperature rise (EVEN BASED ON THE IPCC’s OWN “SCENARIOS”), these enormously costly and risky remedies will have no measurable benefit whatever!
    This is the question that the Trolls must answer! It isn’t posters and commenters here who allege we only have X months to save the planet!

  136. Sordnay:
    Thanks for the link to the AWG “Believer” website. I spent about 15 minutes on it.
    I immediately came back to WUWT. The contrast is stark.
    The “Believer” website is pure EMOTIONAL content. No objective information.
    It is so STARK to look at in comparison to WUWT.
    WUWT readers will benefit by noting the contrast.
    Max

  137. Ref – nanuuq (19:55:57) :
    “So like, i’m new to this, and only a couple of you have been of any help thanks D. Patterson, but it will take me a bit to read that stuff tho none of you really answered my questsions.
    I’m sorry i’m not smart enough for you guys :(”
    ___________________
    Many, if not most, of us are “new” to this. Read and re-read what you see here. Wiki-or-Google around the web and do more reading, and check out the links these folks give out too. Ask questions. Be careful not to jump on something that you’re not sure what it is; don’t drive over anything you’re not sure what it is. No one here is against you. Feel free to contribute. Be aware that these people genuinely want real answers too and not yesterday’s MSM propaganda. I was (and still am) also trounced a few times. The cuts heal.
    PS: There ARE some primadonas with softskin, and some really old geezers that can’t read so well and need a little more empathy (like me), and you will appreciate their personalities better as time goes by:-) G’day!

  138. Dotto (00:54:40) :
    Looking at the UAH data (http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/) I find that the lower atmosphere at 4,4 km (ch05), is extremely hot while the upper part at 17 km (ch09) is extremely cold now compared to the 20 year averages.
    Does somebody have any theory on what is going on?

    At 17km cooling is due to loss of ozone which causes heating at that altitude and increased CO2 which will give some radiational cooling there.

  139. “Roy quite clearly believes there’s been warming, but that natural events are the main player.
    The big issue for skeptics is: will it continue, and can we/should we do anything about it”
    I will go one farther and say most sceptics believe the globe has been warming for about 300 years (since the coldest decades of the LIA). But it is quite another thing to declare the 1990s-2009 was the warmest period of the last 2 millenia.
    What is so fascinating about the global weather since August of 2009 is the extremes we’re seeing. September was one of the warmest Septembers of the last 100 year; followed by one of the coldest Octobers of the last 100 years, which in turn was followed by one of the warmest Novembers. And the NH December was one of the coldest in 30 years.
    One of the Hallmarks of the LIA was the erractic climate/weather patterns that circled the globe. At least at the onset, weather extremes seemd to dictate things. China saw both devastating droughts and floods; Periods of both droughts and high level glacier expansion marked the tropics; Northwest Europe saw about every kind of weather one could imagine. East Asia saw extreme cold and drought, which forced the Mongol armies to march westward, and the Franz Joesf Glacier in New Zealand saw rapid growth.
    I think the Alarmists got it wrong; weather extremes seem to accompany a cooling planet, and not a warming one.
    At least those of us in the NH can count ourselves lucky that this last 8 weeks was during an El Nino period, and not La Nina. One could hardly imagine how cold things would have gotten if the negative AO and NAO were buttressed by La Nina.

  140. JP (09:27:07) :
    I believe you have well-described the behavior of the system when it swithces from one state to the other. Both warming and cooling are momentums of thier own, and while cooling is taking over, we still have unspent momentum on warming. They are like oil on water, never mixing until one is dead.
    What happens when we have a La Nina on top of negative AO, PDO and NAO, low AP index, Solar Activity outstripping Sunspot counts, lax Solar Winds and high GCR’s and increased Tectonic Activity?
    We won’t have long to wait for the answer.

  141. Data presentation is always difficult. I always try to use simple scales based on ten, i.e. ten year or 20 year etc. I think if we keep it simple and standard, it is easier for the faithful to understand. In this instance climate and weather. dn

  142. hunter
    fwiw, if you’re the same “hunter” who called me an “idiot” pretty many threads ago – it was funny, you didn’t want “to put too fine a point on it” – I’m just making sure you know your were actually responding to “anna v”, who pointed out quickly that she’d forgotten to close italics, which then misled you. It didn’t bother me at all, because what you were saying didn’t relate to anything I’d said.

  143. Well I have never had a problem with the one year versus two year averaging; five and ten year averaging would give even slower changes.
    My #1 problem is that a year is NOT 13 months, and two years is not 25 months.
    As I have said repeatedly, common sense suggests that temperatures should show a roughly 86,400 second periodicity; well I’ll let you choose whether you want siderial or some other time measure; and temperatures also ought to show a 365 1/4 day or thereabouts periodicity. One can reasonably expect that a full year represents reasonably a return to some almost constant state (forget Milankovitch).
    So I would consider that a 12 month or a 24 month averaging period, would integrate out cyclic changes that have a known cause; namely the earth moving around the sun in its orbit. To the extent that such an annual cycle occurs; either a 13 month, or a 25 month averaging period, is going to reproduce that annual cycle at a reduced amplitude; less so for the longer period; whereas averaging over a complete cycle eliminates any such effect completely.
    I also havea big problem with one feature of the graph that Dr Spencer did not mention, and few others as near as I can tell. What on earth is that beautifuly ruler drawn straight line ?
    If you remove that red straight line from the graph, you get a completely different picture of what happened.
    What really happened is that from 1979 to 1997, precisely nothing happened; the temperature stayed constant, with a few up and down squiggles and neither the raw, nor the 13, or 25 month smoothes show otherwise.
    Then in 1998, there was this big El Nino, and for some reason (I don’t know it) the temperature jumped up in 1998 to a new level; and then since 1998, it is back to ho-hum again, precisely nothing has happneed since 1999.
    Now one thing about Dr Roy’s data, that should not be overlooked, is that this is data derived from some upper atmosphere layer; evidently 14,000 odd feet if I have been following correctly; and not ground based surface measurments.
    The significance of that is that I would not be surprised to see such a step change as occurrend in 1998 in data that comes from a relatively low thermal mass energy source as the 14,000 ft atmosphere. I haven’t a clue what would cause or what caused such a step change; but the data looks pretty clear to me; it happened. I’d be a lot more surprised if there was as quick a repsonse from ground based data.
    I’m pretty comfortable whith either the short or longer smoothing time; as Roy sees fit; the change produces quite expected results; and doesn’t “hide” anything.
    I’m just uncomfortable that it must show something that it should completely eliminate; which is whatever annual sun encircling round trip puts in there; so I’d rather see 12, or 24 months. To me, the 13/25 is just too cute for words; and doesn’t seem to have any logical basis.
    Well I could be wrong so I’m willing to listen as to why the non synchronous timing there.

  144. Take out all the cool-looking colored squigglies and look at the straight line plane and it’s obviously on an incline; a whopping 0.2 degrees C above the baseline since 1979. Isn’t that about a third of a degree F? Am I reading it correctly?
    What temperature does the baseline of 0.0 represent? I assume it isn’t 0 degrees Celsius (32F) as we are not in an Ice Age… yet. I’m sure my UK friends might take issue with that last bit though. 😀
    Thanks for the help here. Even being the science noob that I freely admit to, I still think I may be just as qualified to head the IPCC as Engineer Bill is!

  145. E.M. Smith (04:07:35) – thanks for clarifying the statistics of running means for me. The internet is great in the way it allows helpful responses like this. Actually I suddenly saw the answer for myself the other night – but I’m still glad to have a specialist to confirm that it was the correct answer. It also left Spencer’s argument intact and I will defend it when he comes under further attack down here in Oz.
    Would it be true to say of global temperature over the last year:
    1. The northern hemisphere had some very cold weather which has made many people sceptical there
    2. The southern hemisphere had some very hot weather which has made many people here in Australia receptive to the strong anthropogenic global warming theory
    3. The significant result is that globally there has been scant sign of warming over the last decade or more
    4. We cannot know whether the cessation of global warming over that last decade will be long term or not. But we can say that the science is not really settled.

  146. DirkH:
    To Joel Shore: Hi Joel! I was just having fun and wanted to stir the debate up. In five years we can argue again, my bet is the cooling becomes more significant.

    You can literally bet on weather five years from now (i.e., if 2014 will be one of the five warmest years), at https://www.intrade.com/ under Climate & Weather.

  147. I am interested in Motl’s projection that the January ‘10 UAH anomaly will exceed 0.70. I checked the UAH data, and this would be the highest Jan anomaly in the data, beating 0.59 in Jan 07 and 0.58 in Jan 98.
    In addition, the UAH anomaly hit 0.50 last November, the highest November anomaly in the records. The runner-up was Nov ‘05 with 0.40 and only two other Nov anomalies exceeded 0.30.
    And the September UAH anomaly hit 0.42, the second highest for that month. The record was Sep ‘98 with 0.43, and only other September reading to exceed 0.30 was Sep ‘05 with 0.35.
    And the July UAH anomaly was also 0.42, the second highest in the record. The record was Jul ‘98 with 0.52, with the third place going to Jul ‘05 with 0.33. Only one other July exceeded 0.30.
    The second half of 2009 anomalies were quite high, considering the measurements were taken during the early months of a new El Nino. Notice that all the other record monthly anomalies were for years were El Nino peak years following the January El Nino, and 2010 will be the El Nino peak year, following this January El Nino peak. The UAH satellite data seem more sensitive to the ENSO cycle than other temperature records, and this could mean 2010 will see some record high monthly anomalies.
    Based on previous increases in UAH anomalies during El Nino years, does Dr. Spencer expect that any of the 2010 monthly UAH anomalies will break any of the 2005 and 1998 monthly records? Well, Motl claims January will likely do so, but how about the rest of the year?
    I can see that moving from a 13 month average to 25 month average will help smooth down some of the new record data, but the moderator and readers can still see the monthly data.
    Will the seasonal downturn in UAH anomalies (from Jan/Feb to May) help conceal the incline? Perhaps the seasonal decline that has been seen repeatedly in the UAH anomalies will repeat again this year. Other temperature records don’t show such a pronounced drop in global temperatures, so perhaps there is still room to dampen rising data values.
    Would anyone want to guess what 2010 will show in UAH anomalies. Will we see 0.50 anomalies for the first half, or maybe just 0.40 anomalies due to the UAH seasonal decline? What is the chance in this El Nino year of exceeding 0.60 for the first half? Only in 1998 did the six month rolling average UAH anomaly exceed 0.60.
    Does anyone want to forecast?

  148. rbateman (23:03:06) :
    J.Peden (21:58:38) :
    The great ipcc Climate Scientist wants to know why it isn’t getting warmer. He’s called the divergence of “global mean” temp. from CO2 concentrations a “travesty”, and is quite upset about it.
    Alas, poor Trenberth. He doesn’t recognize an object in motion when he sees it.

    Total misrepresentation
    The travesty that Trenberth refers is just the same as Christy shows in his post:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/13/spencer-clouds-dominate-co2-as-a-climate-driver-since-2000/
    Energy into earth is greater than energy out of earth. Therefore the earth should be waring but over the last few years thermometers have not shown this increase.
    Kevin Trenberth said:
    ” The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.”
    I.e. the satellite energy balance measurements are inadequate/wrong.
    It is interesting that Spencer has not commented on the lack of CHLT since nov:
    tfp (18:22:13) :
    I have asked what has happened to the 1km temperature that used to be on the AMSU site This showed a rapid rise but then the CHLT data was discontinued in Nov. 2009:
    http://img69.imageshack.us/img69/2104/amsutemptrends.png
    rise is about .1degC/year!
    This data was then replaced with sea surface temperature
    What I find most strange is that so many sceptics consider AMSU data the most accurate – “all the others have been adjusted”. Satellite temperatures must be some of the most tweaked temperatures around – Temperature is not being measured at all it is a microwave proxy, The height of measurement is not a spot height – it is the combined “temperature” from a range of heights

  149. J.Peden says:

    Well, Kevin Trenberth “just wants to know” much more than you do. The great ipcc Climate Scientist wants to know why it isn’t getting warmer. He’s called the divergence of “global mean” temp. from CO2 concentrations a “travesty”, and is quite upset about it.

    That is an incredible misinterpretation of what Trenberth was talking about (and actually expressed in a paper). Trenberth is not fooled, as many skeptics are, by this issue of short time periods when fluctuations dominate over the slow upward trend due to rising greenhouse gas concentrations. However, he is frustrated that we can’t get a better handle on the transfers of energy down to a fraction of a watt that are necessary to understand in detail where the energy is going. And, by the way, one project that would have apparently helped a lot in this endeavor was canceled by the Bush Administration, perhaps partly out of spite toward Al Gore (see http://bobpark.physics.umd.edu/WN08/wn120508.html ).
    Richard M says:

    Joel Shore (16:18:53), if the argument was only over the radiative effect of Co2 this blog wouldn’t exist. Most here agree with a ~1C temperature increase per doubling of Co2 which would mostly be beneficial. Warm is good, cold is bad. Living in Rochester I suspect you’d much rather experience that 80F summer day then just about any cold winter day.
    It’s the feedbacks that are in question.

    I actually agree with you that the issue of feedbacks is the place where there is legitimate scientific argument…And, in fact, I have even advised people here that they should focus on that rather than arguing these Flat-Earther things like the greenhouse effect disobeying the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, the CO2 effect already being saturated, or the rise in CO2 not being anthropogenic. However, many don’t seem to listen. What can I do?
    As for Rochester weather, actually I much prefer the summers up here to what I grew up with in Washington DC. And, since I have loved snow ever since I was a kid (White crystals falling from the sky and coating everything…Isn’t that magical!?!), I like the Rochester winters too (well, except for the part about almost never seeing the sun). So, no, I would prefer the climate here not to warm.

  150. By the way, in my previous post, I should have said “fraction of a W/m^2”, not “fraction of a watt”…which would be pretty damn impressive on a global scale.

  151. It’s unfortunate that Dr Spencer has to explain/defend such a trivial point as to the time-period of his smoothing.
    Hiding the incline? The yearly, unsmoothed data are clearly visible behind on the graph.

  152. beng (18:08:45) :
    It’s unfortunate that Dr Spencer has to explain/defend such a trivial point as to the time-period of his smoothing.
    Hiding the incline? The yearly, unsmoothed data are clearly visible behind on the graph.

    It’s a pity that CRU have to defend the so called hidden decline. Their total stupidity is shown by publishing a paper describing the effect for all to see – how stupid is that!

  153. Joel Shore (18:04:05)
    Joel, the real travesty is even worse than Trenberth was admitting – “travesty” being a rather serious word to begin with.
    Here’s a relevant example of Trenberths’ use of Travesty
    “The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming [according to the AGW Models + data]: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.”
    How is what Trenberth said above not at least as concerning as what I said he said:
    “Well, Kevin Trenberth ‘just wants to know’ much more than you do. The great ipcc Climate Scientist wants to know why it isn’t getting warmer. He’s called the divergence of ‘global mean’ temp. from CO2 concentrations a ‘travesty’, and is quite upset about it.”
    It seems that Trenberth doesn’t like real Ceres, CO2 and Temp. data because it threatens the holy AGW claims. It therefore “upsets” him because he can’t explain the “why” of the divergence. So he instead blames “the data” and “our observation system” calling their failure to conform to Model + data output – “there should be even more warming” – a “travesty”, when he can’t find the predicted warming anywhere else either.
    So it looks to me like the greater travesty is that the Climate Scientist calls Climate Science’s own empirical results a “travesty”, and will not allow his holy AGW claim to be falsified by mere data.

  154. “”” beng (18:08:45) :
    It’s unfortunate that Dr Spencer has to explain/defend such a trivial point as to the time-period of his smoothing. “””
    Well if you are including MY comments in your comment here beng, you are surely barking up the wrong tree.
    Sure I do not understand the use of 13 months instead of 12, nor of 25 instead of 24; but in no way was I asking Dr Spencer to defend his positon; I’m here to learn, whenever there is something to learn; and with Dr Roy, I find there is always something that I learn anyway, so if he should run out of more important things to do, and can’t figure out how to pass some time, and wants to saywhat that reason is; I’ll be happy to learn; but I’m not asking him to defend his methodology.

  155. Joel Shore (18:04:05) :
    “…..Trenberth is not fooled, as many skeptics are, by this issue of short time periods when fluctuations dominate over the slow upward trend due to rising greenhouse gas concentrations….”
    Oh now I understand.
    When the temperature goes up it’s due to human CO2 emissions and when it doesn’t it’s due to “fluctuations”.

  156. nunuuq “have any of you dudes calculated how many joules of energy have been inserted into the biosphere by the burning of ‘buried sunshine’?”
    A simpler and more intuitive answer than anything I’ve seen in this thread is that if it mattered, the IPCC would be worried about it. However, suppose it matters and the IPCC is not worried about it. In that case, it would make just as much sense to challenge the warmists with it. I think the bottom line is that you’ve invented your own theory of global warming.

  157. Whether there is decline or incline in the earth’s global temperature is, at this time, not important in the discussion. The real challenge lies at the fact which temperature records have been used to come to this conclusion, and if these are properly recorded, validated and maintained. It seems that records (like GISS database) have been compromised…
    So what the real truth is is yet still unknown (?), but looking at raw data from rural sites should tell us more than our words can say.

  158. Jeroen (06:19:23) : edit
    ” It seems that records (like GISS database) have been compromised…
    So what the real truth is is yet still unknown (?), but looking at raw data from rural sites should tell us more than our words can say.”
    Welp, the main issue is the thousands of rural stations dropped by GISS which are still collecting data. I propose we as volunteers go about getting those records, and adding them into the existing GISS, then dropping all stations rated below average in surfacestations.org (i.e. airports, UHIs).

  159. Good comment, count me in 🙂
    However I think that the outcome wouldn’t change that much because we’re (certainly I’m not) scientists. We can’t take this to peer-review, that’s for sure 😉
    But.. for whoever is interested, someone already did so for the US some time ago;

    Cheers!

  160. tfp (17:55:36) :
    Total misrepresentation
    The travesty that Trenberth refers is just the same as Christy shows in his post:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/13/spencer-clouds-dominate-co2-as-a-climate-driver-since-2000/
    Energy into earth is greater than energy out of earth.

    No, because according to Spencer the Ceres data also shows the Earth losing energy while CO2 is increasing. So no one knows what the Earth was doing prior to Ceres, at least if the Ceres data is accepted. While AGW simply presumes the Earth is always gaining energy net while CO2 is increasing. Trenberth doesn’t want to accept the Ceres data, but then also acts like he wants to look for even more hidden energy, which no one has found yet, and the global mean temp is not reflecting.
    I have no idea what data he likes and doesn’t like. He refuses to consider that the CO2 AGW might be wrong. But what’s the matter with doing real Science from now on? Coming from Climate Science, opposition to that is the major “travesty”.

  161. pft (16:18:29) :It was cold in the 60’s when runs were hard to come by, and warm in the 90’s when steroids caused balls to fly out of the park and runs were scored aplenty before levelling off in the last few years.
    It’s obviously the change in air density due to temperature! LOL
    Max Hugoson (06:33:13) : I agree, +/- 3σ lines were SOP in silicon manuf. during my tenure, 70s-90s. Beating down system deviations so that those two lines were within manuf. specs was the goal.

  162. “One of the great things about the internet is people can post anything they want, no matter how stupid, and lots of people who are incapable of critical thought will simply accept it.”
    Of course, this is not an exclusive or unique definition of the Internet, Dr. Spencer. Exactly the same thing can be said about newspapers, television or governmental agencies. The only difference is the definition of “people” and while it’s always useful to remind ourselves of it, to complain about human folly would be just as useful as complaining about the weather.
    I am curious if any of the accusers will acknowledge your explanation and comparison of the 2 linear trend lines. I will not hold my breath.

  163. J. Peden says:

    So it looks to me like the greater travesty is that the Climate Scientist calls Climate Science’s own empirical results a “travesty”, and will not allow his holy AGW claim to be falsified by mere data.

    I think that you are continuing to misread and misunderstand with Trenberth is saying. He is saying that they can’t close the energy budget. You can read his paper here, by the way: http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Trenberth/trenberth.papers/EnergyDiagnostics09final2.pdf ) I.e., they know that energy has to be conserved but the data aren’t accurate enough to show the energy transfers in detail…and to the extent they try to see where the energy is going, they can’t.
    So, the problems with the empirical data is that they do not support energy conservation, something so fundamental that it would be quite ludicrous to abandon it because of data with known issues. If climate scientists tried to say that energy is not conserved then they would rightly be laughing stocks in the scientific community. Abandoning or not abandoning AGW has nothing to do with it.

  164. “”” Boulderfield (10:47:23) :
    “One of the great things about the internet is people can post anything they want, no matter how stupid, and lots of people who are incapable of critical thought will simply accept it.” “””
    So now I’m confused; you mean there are actually two of those straight red lines; with my eyes there could be a dozen and I would never see them.
    Now don’t tell me; you really think that any difference in those two lines you evidently can see is actually real and significant ?

  165. tfp (19:35:51) :
    Roy Spencer didn’t splice differing data sets together to create a graph. ClimateGate scientsts did.
    Roy Spencer is practicing science. ClimateGate scientists were, and still are, practicing deception.

  166. I think that you are continuing to misread and misunderstand with Trenberth is saying. He is saying that they can’t close the energy budget.
    Why would Trenberth call it a “travesty” if it didn’t relate to CO2 AGW, which it obviously does? For example, since I don’t have to be so completely tied to CO2 AGW, I don’t see it as a “travesty”. I don’t have to immediately claim that the Ceres data must be “wrong” or that there must be more hidden energy somewhere.
    I don’t even believe that GW has been proven to be a net disease, or that CO2 is causing any significant warming, while I do know with some certainty that the proposed AGW alleged cure to the alleged disease would be worse than the alleged disease – by simply applying the Precautionary Principle to the alleged cure. So failure to “close the energy budget” doesn’t come anywhere close to bothering me enough to call it a “travesty”.

  167. photon without a Higgs (17:30:17) :
    Roy Spencer didn’t splice differing data sets together to create a graph. ClimateGate scientsts did.

    Spencer and/or his team have not spliced diverging data, they have disposed of a whole series that was showing massive warming.
    Without an explanation for this he is hiding the incline in a totally unscientific manner.
    All I have asked was what has happened to the 1km temperature that used to be on the AMSU site This showed a rapid rise but then the CHLT data was discontinued in Nov. 2009:
    http://img69.imageshack.us/img69/2104/amsutemptrends.png
    rise is about .1degC/year!
    He may not be deliberately trying to hide the incline but he has still not explained the removal of this 1km measurement.

  168. by simply applying the Precautionary Principle to the alleged cure
    The “Precautionary Principle” should probably be replaced with “risk-benefit analysis” or even “safe and effective” compared to the problem, so that people are not misled into thinking the “precautions” don’t have to be evaluated as to their own “risks”, and in comparison to the alleged problem the precautions are supposedly trying to address. I think most people have been assuming that the ipcc, enc., have made this kind of analysis, but they haven’t.
    I’ve been using “Precautionary Principle” as applied to “cures” only to make the point which the AGWers unscientifically seem to want people to ignore when they invoke the Precautionary Principle, that any course of action has risks and is not made noble or reasonable merely because it might be a “precaution”.
    If the EPA functioned like the FDA in regard to its analysis of “cures” or treatments for an established disease, that would probably bring the EPA out of the Dark Ages, and also prevent a “human caused disaster” resulting from an alleged attempt to prevent a completely unsubstantiated “disaster”.
    Never “wasting a crisis” by creating a worse one is not rational – it’s not ethical.

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