2001-2010 was the Snowiest Decade on Record

Guest post by Steven Goddard

Snow blankets New York City. Al Gore (below) claims the increased  snow is due to global warming.
Snow blankets New York City. Photo: Del Mundo, New York Daily News

Photo above from: NY Daily News: Record Snowfall in New York

Now that we have reached the end of the meteorological winter (December-February,) Rutgers University Global Snow Lab numbers (1967-2010) show that the just completed decade (2001-2010) had the snowiest Northern Hemisphere winters on record.  The just completed winter was also the second snowiest on record, exceeded only by 1978.  Average winter snow extent during the past decade was greater than 45,500,000 km2, beating out the 1960s by about 70,000 km2, and beating out the 1990s by nearly 1,000,000 km2.  The bar chart below shows average winter snow extent for each decade going back to the late 1960s.

Here are a few interesting facts.

  • Average winter snow extent has increased since the 1990s, by nearly the area of Texas and California combined.
  • Three of the four snowiest winters in the Rutgers record occurred during the last decade – the top four winters are (in order) 1978, 2010, 2008, 2003
  • The third week of February, 2010 had the second highest weekly extent (52,170,000 m2) out of the 2,229 week record

The bar graph below shows winter data for each year in the Rutgers database, color coded by decade.  The yellow line shows the mean winter snow extent through the period.  Note that the past decade only had two winters below 45 million km2.  The 1990s had seven winters below the 45 million km2, the 1980s had five winters below 45 million km2, and the 1970s had four winters below 45 million km2.  This indicates that the past decade not only had the most snowfall, but it also had the most consistently high snowfall, year over year.

It appears that AGW claims of the demise of snowfall have been exaggerated.  And so far things are not looking very good for the climate model predictions of declining snowfall in the 21st century.

Many regions of the Northern Hemisphere have seen record snowfall this winter, including Washington D.C, Moscow, China, and Korea.  Dr. Hansen’s office at Columbia University has seen record snowfall, and Al Gore has ineptly described the record snow :

“Just as it’s important not to miss the forest for the trees, neither should we miss the climate for the snowstorm,”

A decade long record across the entire Northern Hemisphere is not appropriately described as a “snowstorm.”


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Karl
March 2, 2010 4:49 pm

Good work Steve.

Pascvaks
March 2, 2010 4:57 pm

Warmest? and Snowiest? Somehow I just knew there had to be a logical connection. Beautiful! This explains everything!
(Please don’t ask what;-)

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 4:58 pm

http://www.easternuswx.com/bb/index.php?showtopic=227130&st=460

this is the snowiest decade since the 1940’s in NYC…It will beat out the 1960’s…February 2001-2010 has the highest average for any decade…The top three February snowstorms came during the decade…

March 2, 2010 4:59 pm

Sounds like typical proof of global warming to me.
We must save the polar bears!

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 4:59 pm

Pascvaks,
The areas of record snow this winter also saw well below normal temperatures.

Zoltan Beldi
March 2, 2010 5:11 pm

“Don’t believe white lies, says Al Gore, record-breaking snow is due to global warming”
he has even forgotten the modelling he espoused in “An Inconvenient Truth” where it indicated that the snows of winter would be a memory only.
Some memory !

March 2, 2010 5:12 pm

What’s with 1981? I know the scale starts at 40 million so exagerates it, but it still stands out. Was there something unusual that year that reduced the snowfall?

Gary Hladik
March 2, 2010 5:16 pm

Wait a sec: the “warmest decade on record” is also the snowiest? Has AGW raised the melting point of snow? Yikes, IWTWT!

Frank
March 2, 2010 5:17 pm

From The Simpsons:
Homer: See, Lisa, looks like tomorrow I’ll be shoveling ten feet of global warming.
Lisa: Global warming can cause weather at both extremes, hot and cold.
Homer: I see, so you’re saying warming makes it colder. Well aren’t you the queen of crazy land. Everything’s the opposite of everything.

John Balttutis
March 2, 2010 5:21 pm

Not bad for nine-year decade!

Stuart
March 2, 2010 5:24 pm

But it’s “rotten” snow!

Chris D.
March 2, 2010 5:28 pm

Chalk up another failed AR4 prediction.

PaulH
March 2, 2010 5:31 pm

Yes, but it’s “rotten” snow, so it doesn’t count. ;->

Squidly
March 2, 2010 5:33 pm

Judging by the graph, does this not disprove the AGW theory that, as we warm, we get more snow? It appears to me, judging by the graph, that the warmest decades had less snow than the cooler ones. For example, the 70’s decade has almost as much snow as this decade, whereas the 90’s (supposedly the most severe of warming) had the least snow. So, when Al Gore says that “more snow is consistent with Gorebull Warming”, he is lying out his posterior, is he not?

Editor
March 2, 2010 5:34 pm

Steve:
If I’d known that it would be so important, I’d have kept better memories. Here in Southern New England I remember much colder, much snowier winters throught the 50’s and 60’s. Long Island Sound had a two or three mile fringe of ice in 1976. During the most recent warmest decade ever I have not been tempted to turn on the air-conditioning once. Everyone else has been hit with snow this winter, but here in West Haven I’ve had to shovel only once. I’m seriously starting to wonder if all our records are merely anecdotal. My experience doesn’t seem to match anyone else’s. Billions for modeling, but chicken-feed for well-sited, well-staffed, well-reported stations?
Maybe climate, like politics, really is local.

PJB
March 2, 2010 5:35 pm

Okay, so now we have to buy sulfate/particulate credits to offset the snowmaking cold, right? Surely there is a climate model that can be co-opted to show the relationship of snowy doom, right? We will be able to legislate changes to industry to ensure that the snow goes down, right?
Charlie Brown, Lucy, football, repeat as often as you can get away with it.

latitude
March 2, 2010 5:40 pm

“It appears that AGW claims of the demise of snowfall have been exaggerated. And so far things are not looking very good for the climate model predictions of declining snowfall in the 21st century.”
The 1967 – 1980 period was the prediction of the next ice age. Not because of snow, but because of temperature.
CO2 levels have increased since then.
People that say CO2 = warmer = more moisture = more snow.
Moisture without cold is called rain.
This was not the rainest decade on record!

LearDog
March 2, 2010 5:42 pm

While all good sport I suppose – we all can giggle (two can play at that game!) – this kind of analysis makes me nuts.
1) Choose your metric (snowfall, rainfall, temperature, hurricane intensity, hurricane numbers, tornado numbers, etc.)
2) Choose your baseline (past month, past year, past decade,since 1973, whatever)
and
Invoke your correlation! Causation – inferred by reader or politician du jour.
This kind of analysis is what got us to this point. I gotta call it on BOTH sides of debate, sorry.

Editor
March 2, 2010 5:46 pm

Well, there’s graphs, and there’s graphs. I always like to start out with a graph that shows the actual data, not some kind of reduced anomaly. That puts things in the proper perspective, and allows us to see how big the changes actually are. I used the same data used by Steve Goddard, starting in 1971 to avoid early gaps in the dataset.
Here’s that graph:

As you can see, all that this proves is that there is nothing unusual in the data. As I have argued before, there is nothing to be explained. There is nothing unusual about the temperature data. There is nothing unusual about the snowfall data. As far as I know, there is nothing in any climate data outside natural variations, nothing to require an explanation, whether it is CO2 or anything else.
In fact, the unchanging overall nature of the climate, with only minor up and down natural changes, strongly argues for my hypothesis that the earth has a thermostat.

March 2, 2010 5:47 pm

It is clear from your graphs that the snow cover has been flat since the beginning of the data [1967] with no trend whatsoever.

old44
March 2, 2010 5:49 pm

“Average winter snow extent during the past decade was greater than the 1960s by about 70,000 km2” which only goes to proove (switching to Alarmist mode) that it is getting warmer.

latitude
March 2, 2010 5:52 pm

Willis, update your graph to include 2010, so you get that little up-tick on the end.
😉

DJ Meredith
March 2, 2010 5:57 pm

Might be worth pointing out that cities with huge UHI receive less snow, simply because they’re warmer. Tokyo is an excellent example.
So if cities are recording record snowfall, the “recorded” temperatures vs. actual should be even more suspect.

David Segesta
March 2, 2010 6:02 pm

Does anyone have the quotes from the IPCC or Al Gore saying there would be less snow in the future?

Tim F
March 2, 2010 6:02 pm

There’s probably too much CO2 in the snow–deadly to the plant and animal life you know.

March 2, 2010 6:16 pm

I agree with Dr Svalgaard. The record shows large annual variation but no long term trend, which suggests a stochastic process with low autocorrelation.

Robert Kral
March 2, 2010 6:18 pm

You know, temperature observations can be mishandled, manipulated, misperceived, or whatever. It’s hard to sense the difference between 95 degrees and 96 degrees, or between 40 and 41. Snowfall, on the other hand, is bloody obvious. Anyone can tell the difference between snow that comes halfway up your shoes and snow that comes over your ankles. People remember that stuff. The bloody obvious test is my favorite statistical test.

Editor
March 2, 2010 6:18 pm

latitude (17:52:59)

Willis, update your graph to include 2010, so you get that little up-tick on the end.
😉

It’s already there, the graph goes as far as the data goes, through February 2010.
w.

March 2, 2010 6:22 pm

A decade long record across the entire Northern Hemisphere is not appropriately described as a “snowstorm.”
True! And Gore was not describing “a decade long record across the entire Northern Hemisphere,” so for once the two of you agree.

“Just as it’s important not to miss the forest for the trees, neither should we miss the climate for the snowstorm,” Gore wrote in a wonky Op-Ed for The New York Times.
The heavy snowfalls this month have been used as fodder for ridicule by those who argue that global warming is a myth,” he acknowledged.

mkurbo
March 2, 2010 6:26 pm

If global warming is causing snow storms and snow storms are causing unemployment, then is global warming cause unemployment ?
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6205EP20100301?feedType=RSS&feedName=businessNews&rpc=23&sp=true
Or better, is being unemployed a green job ?

pat
March 2, 2010 6:31 pm

Damn inconvenient to have the warmest decade in the existence of the world also the snowiest.

Dave F
March 2, 2010 6:31 pm

I think that the data needs to be adjusted. We should add to the older data because of measurement efficiency increasing in the modern era, and subtract from the modern era because the modern snow cover is increasing, but the snow mass is lower…

Tim Channon
March 2, 2010 6:33 pm

Figure out the significance from this.
Assuming this link works.
http://daedalearth.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/nh-snow-cover.png
Shows all months, no cherry picking.

Pascvaks
March 2, 2010 6:37 pm

Ref – Steve Goddard (16:59:57) :
Pascvaks (16:57:20) :
“Warmest? and Snowiest? Somehow I just knew there had to be a logical connection. Beautiful! This explains everything!
“(Please don’t ask what;-)”
The areas of record snow this winter also saw well below normal temperatures.
________________________
Please don’t misunderstand. For some crazy reason it seems to make sense that global temperatures would be up/high in various places and heavy snows and below norm temps would also be occuring elsewhere. No one was around when the last glacial –or even the little ice age– started. We’re fumbling around in the dark doing the best we can. Why not have both?
PS: I have a strong feeling that nothing serious will happen unless/until the Global Conveyor starts to shrink or collapse:-)

latitude
March 2, 2010 6:38 pm

Thanks Willis, that wasn’t clear to me.

ginckgo
March 2, 2010 6:40 pm

And more snow is incompatible with Global Warming how?

pat
March 2, 2010 6:41 pm

Warm = snowfall is a dolts attempt to explain a fallacy with something only Cooper or Couric could repeat with a straight face because they have never takes a physics class, much less 7th grade weather science.
It is sheer nonsense.

Ani
March 2, 2010 6:42 pm

Just a quick question. I think we had a polar outbreak in 1978 kinda like we had this year. But it might have been 79. Also I would like to see if the solar cycle corresponds to years of more snowfall. Sorry I work off of a blackberry and can’t check it myself.

Richard Sharpe
March 2, 2010 6:44 pm

I think Steve was having a little tongue-in-cheek fun with the breathless warmest-decade-in-a million-years or whatever comes out of the AGW crowd.

p.g.sharrow "PG"
March 2, 2010 6:44 pm

This wide spread heavy snow is a cooling, little white lie.
So what is big Als’ giant whopper called?

N i c k B .
March 2, 2010 6:47 pm

LearDog,
With no disrespect to Steve, I think Willis’ point – which is echoed by Dr. Svalgaard – that there is no real trend is the really important part here.
Chasing short/short-ish trends or spurious-seeming events to counterpoint the Al Gores and Joe Romms is good for advocacy or PR… but it’s Summer of the Sharks hand-waving.
Don’t get me wrong, it is fun to see their tricks used against them but the real storyline is much more subtle.

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES
March 2, 2010 6:49 pm

Increased snow and global warming predictions fit hand in glove—so global warming advocates like Al Gore would say—i.e., warmest decade on record has produced the greatest snowfall on record. But this theorized increase in snow from global warming is supposed to be in an ever smaller and smaller circle in the Northern Hemisphere with the circumference of that diminishing circle around the world approaching closer, year by year, to the North Pole.
But that isn’t happening. The area of snow cover is not retreating towards the north but it is covering a greater area heading south. The area of snow cover at wintertime around the world in the Northern Hemisphere is growing bigger not smaller.
This southward moving snowline at winter is impossible in global warming theory scenarios. So again, global warming predictions are not coming to pass.

N i c k B .
March 2, 2010 6:50 pm

Willis/Anthony/Mods,
This is my work address – the offer stands, if you ever come through the drinks are on me!

Pascvaks
March 2, 2010 6:54 pm

Ref – ginckgo (18:40:53) :
“And more snow is incompatible with Global Warming how?”
________________________
Nothing’s incompatable with Anthroprogenic Global Warming. Man Made Global Warming allows for and predicts all contingencies. Remember? It’s “man made”, some say mann made;-)

Roger Knights
March 2, 2010 6:58 pm

John Balttutis (17:21:04) :
Not bad for nine-year decade!

Now that we have reached the end of the meteorological winter (December-February,) Rutgers University Global Snow Lab numbers (1967-2010) show that the just completed decade (2001-2010) had the snowiest Northern Hemisphere winters on record.”

Roger Knights
March 2, 2010 7:02 pm

PS: 2001 through 2010 includes 10 years, just as there are ten numbers within the range of 1-10.

Pamela Gray
March 2, 2010 7:04 pm

I would agree that no trend is the better hypothesis. We often trot out the increase in CO2 ppm graph as a function of the million parts of the atmosphere to show that in reality, the trend is rather…tiny.
This tiny tick up would, likewise, not show up on such a graph and is likely well within the error bars from year to year and decade to decade.

Jay
March 2, 2010 7:05 pm

This looks like good work Steve.
I’m interested though. Comparing your new plots now that all the data is in for Feb 2010 to your previous plots where you used filler data for the last little bit in February shows quite a discrepancy. Indeed you predicted that 2010 was on track to be the snowiest winter by quite a significant margin. I wonder if you’ve learned any lessons about the use of filler data.
Also, can you tell me when the 21st century started and by how much you think ‘things’ aren’t looking very good for the models.
All the best.

Editor
March 2, 2010 7:09 pm

Roger Knights (18:58:52)

John Balttutis (17:21:04) :

Not bad for nine-year decade!

“Now that we have reached the end of the meteorological winter (December-February,) Rutgers University Global Snow Lab numbers (1967-2010) show that the just completed decade (2001-2010) had the snowiest Northern Hemisphere winters on record.”

No, ten years. It runs from the winter ending Feb 2001 to the winter ending Feb 2010 inclusive, or ten years.

Roger Knights
March 2, 2010 7:12 pm

OOps — I was interrupted by a phone call. Make that:
PS: 2001 through 2010 includes 10 years, just as there are ten numbers within the range of 1-10.

Snowguy716
March 2, 2010 7:13 pm

Here in Minnesota, we haven’t had our snowiest decade by a long shot. In fact, the period of 1997/98-2006/07, with the exception of 2000/01, were historically warmer than normal (the most warm winters in a row by a long shot with data going back to 1820 in Minneapolis). The winters of 1999/2000, 2001/02, 2002/03, 2003/04, and 2006/07 were exceptionally mild and dry winters with only 2003/04 having any significant snowstorms of those listed (which melted thanks to unusual warmth… again unusual here). Only since 2007/08 have things seemed to have returned to normal with 2007/08 being an average winter with a very cold and snowy spring (our snowiest April on record with 50″… nearly a season’s worth of snowfall!). On the other hand, our summers have gotten noticeably colder with frequent June and August frosts which were unheard of in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. In fact, 2004 set the record for shortest growing season here… only to be broken again in 2009 when unusual cold in early June with two days of temps down into the 20s and another frost in mid August… not good for someone who has a green thumb!

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES
March 2, 2010 7:19 pm

Seems that some are missing, again, Steven Goddard’s point. There is not supposed to be an increase in snow covering a larger area of the earth (as he pointed out in a previous post) in global warming predictions.
I don’t see him making a point about ‘trend from 1967 to 2010’. Do you?
But I do see this:
It appears that AGW claims of the demise of snowfall have been exaggerated. And so far things are not looking very good for the climate model predictions of declining snowfall in the 21st century.
Science requires unforgiving accuracy. Let’s try to keep things in context would be my request of scientists here. 😉

AlexB
March 2, 2010 7:24 pm

There are parts of the world that are moist enough to snow but too warm to snow in a given season. There are also parts of the world that are cold enough to snow but too dry to snow in any given season. Consider the North Pole. Changes in snowfall in the north pole would be moisture driven because all year round it is cold enough to snow at some point during the day but there is a lack of moisture. So places like the north pole would likely have more snow in a warming world.
Now consider the United States. The lack of snow here is mainly driven by it being to warm to snow not the lack of moisture. So more snow in the United States would be driven by colder temperatures.
So we have different regions of the world where different conditions (warming vs cooling) will produce different trends in snowfall.
Now I don’t understand why people think they can take the theory from the Arctic (warmer = more snow) and apply it to a different region like the US (colder = more snow) and claim that observation supports the theory.

March 2, 2010 7:25 pm

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES (19:19:18) :
There is not supposed to be an increase in snow covering a larger area of the earth
And there hasn’t been as his graphs and Willis’ and mine http://www.leif.org/research/Snow-Cover-1966-2010-NH-Winter.png show so clearly.

_Jim
March 2, 2010 7:26 pm


DJ Meredith (17:57:40) :
Might be worth pointing out that cities with huge UHI receive less snow, simply because they’re warmer. Tokyo is an excellent example.

Nice theory, but, a large part of the UHI effect is retained heat from insolation (incoming solar radiation energy warming concrete etc) and, if no sun, no warmth … which in large part happened in Dallas Ft. Worth just recently with our record snow; and we had continuing overcast afterwards too.
When the sun *does* come out, whatever frozen precip we did have literally melts away; continued overcast and the winter precip is much longer to melt.
.
.

Richard M
March 2, 2010 7:34 pm

Paul Daniel Ash (18:22:09) :
A decade long record across the entire Northern Hemisphere is not appropriately described as a “snowstorm.”
True! And Gore was not describing “a decade long record across the entire Northern Hemisphere,” so for once the two of you agree.
“Just as it’s important not to miss the forest for the trees, neither should we miss the climate for the snowstorm,” Gore wrote in a wonky Op-Ed for The New York Times.
“The heavy snowfalls this month have been used as fodder for ridicule by those who argue that global warming is a myth,” he acknowledged.

Yup, Gore and others like him hyped the alarmist claims that the ski industry would disappear and children might never see snow again. They lied and now those lies are coming back to roost.
Now, in pure revisionist mode, they are claiming that more snow is “consistent” with AGW, and in fact, a result of AGW.
And you are surprised that people would ridicule him? That people would laugh and complain about 2′ of global warming on their driveways? Isn’t it about time you removed the blindfold.

March 2, 2010 7:45 pm

The temperatures records have been “cooked”. So it’s no surprise the hottest decade is the snowiest 🙂

Dave F
March 2, 2010 7:46 pm

Sure there is no trend. But that is because we are measuring in whole kms! Lets split the km into decimal places, and portray and do all the calculations that way. But, remember, since we are measuring snow cover, we have to eliminate the outliers, which would be all areas that are too snowy, and any areas that are deemed not snowy enough, such as the Mojave. We can’t have these outliers contaminating the trend we are trying to detect.

NickB.
March 2, 2010 7:46 pm

aMINO,
The point, to me at least, of bringing up the lack of long term trend is to preempt the quite predictable holier-than-thou, we-do-it-but-you-can’t charge of cherry picking that Tamino should be posting in 3… 2…
It’s not to beat Steve up. That’s my $0.02 at least

rbateman
March 2, 2010 7:46 pm

Too bad for the warmists they couldn’t enjoy the good times while they lasted.
Now we have another decade or two of getting our chops busted with snow & ice.

Kate
March 2, 2010 7:50 pm

Climateprogress is patting itself on the back for displaying a list of scientists who support global warming.
http://climateprogress.org/2010/03/02/the-climate-change-debate-is-science-versus-snake-oil/#comment-265042
After removing all the national academies of science and national departments of something for linking their science to the UN IPCC, what have we got left?
I intend to start on this project tomorrow.

timetochooseagain
March 2, 2010 7:50 pm

“A decade long record across the entire Northern Hemisphere is not appropriately described as a “snowstorm.””
It’s a Blizzkrieg 😉

hunter
March 2, 2010 7:52 pm

So we have what appears to be snowiest decade, along with what is claimed to be the warmest decade…..and so what?
No great catastrophes.
No great famines.
Droughts within historic norms.
Rainfall within historic norms.
Storms within historic norms.
Snow is falling within its seasonal expectations.
But according to our AGW friends, we are facing *climate crisis*.

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 7:53 pm

The point is again, that snowfall is not declining as predicted by the models.

rbateman
March 2, 2010 7:55 pm

ginckgo (18:40:53) :
And more snow is incompatible with Global Warming how?

If the Earth warms, there is less cold air to freeze the warmer moisture into snow.
If the Eath cools, there is more cold air to freeze the warmer moisture into snow.

Stephan
March 2, 2010 7:56 pm

These types of postings are devastating to AGW because the proof is provided directly. THis is why its important to keep the originals always.

Patrick Davis
March 2, 2010 7:57 pm

“latitude (17:40:52) :
People that say CO2 = warmer = more moisture = more snow.
Moisture without cold is called rain.
This was not the rainest decade on record!”
Downunder, some places in Australia we’ve had record rains while you guys up north have had record snows.

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 8:00 pm

Willis, Leif,
I haven’t seen any criticism from you about anything in the article or the data presented.
You seem to be complaining about your own inferences. I can’t take credit or responsibility for your thoughts.

Stephan
March 2, 2010 8:08 pm

Looks like NH ice is at 2000 levels! better keep originals before they start “hiding the increase” see DMI and compare with CT !

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 8:09 pm

Willis,
I completely agree that the earth has to have a thermostat, given that temperatures have remained in a narrow band for hundreds of millions of years.

RockyRoad
March 2, 2010 8:09 pm

What are the Warmers predicting for the next decade? Whatever it is, I’ll expect just the opposite!

Graeme From Melbourne
March 2, 2010 8:12 pm

Well…. Just go ahead… Raise my Taxes!!!
I’ve become completely convinced that more Global Warming equals more Cold and more Snow, and that paying more Taxes is a civic duty to support the Noble cause of saving the planet…
You know – if I could pay 110% of my income as tax – I would, I really would, because you just know that the government will spend it wisely, you just know it, you can trust them to do what’s best for all of us. After all they have certainly nailed that Man Made Global Warming thingy.
What if I got a second job and worked nights and weekends, I could get some extra money to give to Greenpeace and the World Wildlife Fund to save the Polar Bears. ‘Cause they need our help, Al Gore said so, and just like the Government we can trust him too, after all he was a Vice President or something…
Seeing all that snow, well it just makes me mad to know that Man Made emissions of CO2 did all that. Making snow and killing Polar bears – I can hardly stand it.
Wheeeww… good to got that off my chest…

Wayne R
March 2, 2010 8:14 pm

Yeah, yeah, if the warming is causing more oceanic evaporation thereby causing increased snow, why didn’t it come down as nice warm rain?
Well, we still don’t know enough about our chaotic climate system to say that in a warming world all that snow was impossible. Mind-bogglingly unlikely, sure, especially over a period of years (this winter was not the first such, as we know). But still not a cast-iron case.
One datum that would help a lot would be the amount of precipitation, snow and rain combined, over those snowy winters. If greater than normal, that would refine the questions we need to answer. If the same precip, equally ditto but different. If less, ditto again but also different again.

Allan M R MacRae
March 2, 2010 8:18 pm

Nothing to see here folks, move on!
The snow does not exist.
The people at CRU, GISS and NCDC have conferred, and adjusted their records.
There is no snow.
There is no snow.
There is no snow.

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES
March 2, 2010 8:22 pm

Leif Svalgaard (19:25:50) :
Starting points are the fodder of endless arguments.

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES
March 2, 2010 8:23 pm

Steve Goddard (20:00:23) :
You seem to be complaining about your own inferences.
This is the point I was also trying to make.

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 8:25 pm

kate,
Good catch. It certainly is not surprising that scientists would support their funding sources.

Dave Worley
March 2, 2010 8:26 pm

“the data are surely wrong.
Our observing system is inadequate.”

Dave Worley
March 2, 2010 8:29 pm

Oops…forgot.
“it is a travesty”

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 8:32 pm

I made a graph of GISTEMP vs. snow cover. If there is a correlation between snow cover and temperature, I sure can’t see it.
http://docs.google.com/View?id=ddw82wws_442cfr5k9cw

crosspatch
March 2, 2010 8:48 pm

“And more snow is incompatible with Global Warming how?”
It isn’t the amount of snow. One could have “more” as in deeper snow with Global Warming. But what is incompatible with AGW is the extent of the snow. Imagine you have an area that was just barely at the snow line. If you warm the climate, that snow line should move North. So while one might expect greater precipitation amounts during warming climate, the precipitation would fall as rain in that location and the snow line would be expected to move North.
What we have seen this year is the snow line moving South of where it has been in recent years in both North America and Eurasia. This would tend to contradict a warming climate. But climate change can manifest in many different ways.
The Younger Dryas is considered a cold period when climate returned to near ice age conditions for a while but during the Younger Dryas, the Midwestern US had hotter Summers than before the event. The climate became more extreme during the Younger Dryas in many areas with both hotter summers and colder winters than before the event or even today (Shuman et al., 2002; Grimm and Jacobson, 2004) . So you can have a “cold” period that produces record high summer temperatures.
But generally, snow lines move according to general climate. Lets see how the next 10 years look.

philincalifornia
March 2, 2010 8:52 pm

Great post, great comments. Pretty entertaining for an essentially flat line, but how come we can’t compare raw to the adjusted data ?? Did the climate charlatans not agree as to whether they should adjust it up or down, ha ha ha.
Quite a bit of discussion above about Al Gore and his predilection for telling whoppers. Surely, this most recent one has to be his most obvious ?? It’s sort of set in the present as opposed to most of his whoppers of the future.
A massive lie to start his recent WSJ essay (credit to the person who wrote it for him):

It would be an enormous relief if the recent attacks on the science of global warming actually indicated that we do not face an unimaginable calamity requiring large-scale, preventive measures to protect human civilization as we know it.

Al Gore would be relieved if his raison d’etre for the past 20 or 30 years turns out to be a pile of crap ?? Eh ?? Anybody believe that ??

RockyRoad
March 2, 2010 8:57 pm

Wayne R (20:14:26) :
Yeah, yeah, if the warming is causing more oceanic evaporation thereby causing increased snow, why didn’t it come down as nice warm rain?
———
Reply:
Don’t you remember the teeter-totter analogy? When its warmer over the ocean, evaporation offsets that higher temperature by snowing over the continent. What happens is that the evaporation process makes it cool in one place and the process of condensation into snow makes it warm in another. It’s that simp…. wait…. Let me think about that again. 🙁

Terry
March 2, 2010 9:03 pm

Hang on a minute, this data hasnt been through Tamino’s statistical analysis yet. Im sure that there must be a decline somewhere in there to be found with an R2 of at least 0.1

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 9:09 pm

Terry,
I’m looking forward to Tamino demonstrating how snow cover has declined to a record decadal high. We can call it “Tamino’s snow trick.”

March 2, 2010 9:15 pm

Steve Goddard (20:00:23) :
You seem to be complaining about your own inferences. I can’t take credit or responsibility for your thoughts.
Some models, e.g. INM-CM3.0 predict an increase until 2025, but in any case since the models start their ‘prediction run’ in about year 2000, there has not been enough time to validate or invalidate their claims on a statistically valid basis. Post again around 2020, when we should know which way the wind blows.

Editor
March 2, 2010 9:15 pm

Steve Goddard (20:00:23)

Willis, Leif,
I haven’t seen any criticism from you about anything in the article or the data presented.
You seem to be complaining about your own inferences. I can’t take credit or responsibility for your thoughts.

Well, lets see:
1. I don’t see any complaining in what I said.
2. I didn’t criticise your article or the data presented, I merely tried to place it in a wider context. In fact, I used the data you used.
3. I never asked you to take credit or responsibility for my thoughts.
In short, I don’t understand your point. My point was that although this is the snowiest decade in a while, overall the data show no trend at all.
If you’d like a comment on your article, since you have only five data points and they vary by only ~ ±1%, the difference is not statistically significant.
Better?

wayne
March 2, 2010 9:22 pm

Jet stream shows signs of a collapse back to the fifty degree latitude line. Uooo…, what could it mean? Cooler arctic for the summer? AO back to positive? And the sun, it’s now 1/4 wave of the last cycle’s heat max, the Arctic ice minimum. Is there really such a thermal lag? Watching… waiting…
http://squall.sfsu.edu/scripts/nhemjetstream_model.html
Your post’s appreciated Steve, keep ’em coming.

March 2, 2010 9:22 pm

See, knowing that more snow equals CAGW, that’s proof positive that we’re in uber melt mode!!!!! You guys can’t deny that now!!!!

Editor
March 2, 2010 9:28 pm

So I find myself cheering for sea ice…
Arctic Sea Ice Extent is on an upswing;
http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm
and making a run at the arbitrary normal range used by NCIDC:
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_stddev_timeseries.png
Global Sea Ice Area also appears to be making a run on average:
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/global.daily.ice.area.withtrend.jpg
and Antarctic Sea Ice Extent is again above average:
http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/S_stddev_timeseries.png
There are certainly no signs of the catastrophic, accelerating, extremely rapid, alarming, faster than we predicted only a few years ago, sea ice free arctic summer and drowning polar bear type melting we’ve heard so much about…

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 9:29 pm

wayne,
Thanks for the Jet Stream link. After five months of miserable cold, snow and ice at 45N in Colorado, we finally had a warm afternoon today. We definitely felt the shift in the Jet Stream.

Squidly
March 2, 2010 9:32 pm

@ Willis Eschenbach (17:46:17) :
Thank you for the graph! That is quite telling, and while I agree with your annotation, “snow cover” and “snowiest decade” are two completely different things, at least as I interpret them. “snowiest” suggests to me that there has been MORE snow (ie: deeper snow, more of it), while “snow cover” suggests to me larger COVERAGE (ie: larger areas affected, etc.). Two different measurements.

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 9:35 pm

willis,
OK, thanks for clarifying. The graph and trend you presented was for year round snow cover. I’m just discussing winter snow cover though.
The point I am making is that winter snow cover is not declining and I think we are in agreement.

savethesharks
March 2, 2010 9:37 pm

Al Gore: “Just as it’s important not to miss the forest for the trees, neither should we miss the climate for the snowstorm.”
Steven Goddard: “A decade long record across the entire Northern Hemisphere is not appropriately described as a “snowstorm.”
Well said, and great post, Steven.
I think you and Willis [and Leif] are talking past each other in different languages, while saying the same thing: There is no trend.
I get what you are pointing out, that this snowfall increase defies the predictions of the warmists [or now, in their latest claim that more warming means more snowfall….does it? LOL]….and turns out that you agree with Willis on the longer scale…so we are all fine.
Thanks, Steven, Willis, Leif, Anthony, and everyone else who is working hard to set the record straight….as that is the way science should work.
On a side note of the spurious “more warming means more snow”….
I don’t think they realize how difficult and how “special” conditions need to be to support snow in the temperate climes.
Unlike rain, snow requires specific dendritic snow growth zones in the atmosphere.
Competing with dewpoint-raising factors like the subtropical jet, the Gulf of Mexico, or the Gulf Stream, the “Pineapple Express” in the Pacific, or whatever, snow has a hard time forming, let alone even reaching the surface….unless you are Steamboat Springs, CO.
My own locality on the coastal plain of Virginia [where snow is an anomaly, for sure] saw a change over to brief heavy snow this evening, as adiabatic cooling did its dirty work. But that ended pretty quickly, as there is no arctic air in place, and the Atlantic air took back over.
Speaking of “no arctic air”….it should be pointed out, as Joe Bastardi and other meteorologists on his site have recently opined: There has been little true arctic air in the pattern for this cold, snowy winter.
The persistent high latitude block that sent the Arctic Oscillation into its abyss, has made sure of that. The block has worked so good, that it prevented a true cross-polar flow to set up over the winter.
[Can you imagine how bad it would have been if we would have had true “vodka cold” outbreaks? I remember my brother calling me about the below zero temps (F) in Bend OR in December….there was some damn cold for sure…but not as bad as it could have been.]
Truly an interesting winter season.
All part of that nearly flat line that Willis points out….but the variations from season to season….can be quite dramatic!
Enough to fool people like James Hansen and Michael Mann, for sure.
But, given their shoddy performance so far, is that so hard to do??
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA

Squidly
March 2, 2010 9:38 pm

ginckgo (18:40:53) :
And more snow is incompatible with Global Warming how?

Well, lets see. Warmer=more evaporation from the oceans (no more worries about sea level rise), which causes more precipitation to fall (no more worries of droughts and water shortages), and finally, more snow (no more worries of receding glaciers or low level snow pack).
Hmmm, you’re right, it all sounds pretty good to me. Crisis averted… we’re all saved! And to think, all this goodness from a little “global warming”, who’da thunk it?

March 2, 2010 9:39 pm

Willis Eschenbach (21:15:27) :
Steve Goddard (20:00:23)
Willis, Leif,
I can’t and won’t try to carry a bucket for you guys in respect to climate, but……….lol, you girls are much more knowledgeable about climate/whether than I ever wish to be. That being said, that information is as meaningful, if not more, than the decadal data given to us by the warmistas. At the very least, it shows an irrelevance to the alarm we’ve heard over and over again about the decline of winter. As Anthony pointed out in an earlier post, it has to be colder to snow; Reading the article, I haven’t seen any inferences other than what has been stated. Nothing earth shattering,
Kindest regards,
James Sexton

March 2, 2010 9:41 pm

Is this a homogenized record or are we stuck with the raw data.
Steve is this how the data is normally compiled, or is this special run … Just curious, because I haven’t heard of ‘decade snowfall’ records before.
I think it’s just snow cover, does this say anything about amounts?

Squidly
March 2, 2010 9:46 pm

@ Snowguy716 (19:13:01) :
Go take a look to your Northwest (Fargo, ND) for 1997/98, and you will find a completely different story (snowiest, coldest). 97/98 winter produced 137 accumulated inches of snow in Fargo (most ever recorded) and caused “The Flood of The Millennium” that spring (Discovery Channel production, Google it).

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES
March 2, 2010 9:49 pm

Steve Goddard (20:32:49) :
I made a graph of GISTEMP vs. snow cover. If there is a correlation between snow cover and temperature, I sure can’t see it.
Just take data from different graphs and splice in it in to create what you want. That’s a ‘standard practice’ ‘trick’ in global warming science. It could be worth millions to you.

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES
March 2, 2010 9:49 pm

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES (21:49:02) :
/sarc off now/

March 2, 2010 9:51 pm

The UK’s government declared the UK out of recession after the statistics somehow came up with a growth rate of 0.1% in the last quarter of 2009.
This is pure statistical nonsense; a distraction from reality.
Same for people that not even after but during one very snowy NH winter declare all the remaining data on Climate Change for being wrong.
Are you all serious? It feels like a Kindergarten where shouting out loud is part of the kids’ development.

KlausB
March 2, 2010 9:51 pm

@Graeme From Melbourne (20:12:15) :
“Well…. Just go ahead… Raise my Taxes!!!”
Only, if I can pay my tax in snow.

savethesharks
March 2, 2010 9:52 pm

Willis Eschenbach (21:15:27) :
It was your tone, that’s all. Blog posts can be so impersonal, no?
You said: “I always like to start out with a graph that shows the actual data, not some kind of reduced anomaly.”
You could have said it like this:
“Thanks Steven for pointing out the variations between the seasons. Rather dramatic. Point taken about the climate model errors showing less snowfall.
Check out this larger scale graph which shows no real trend. What do Hansen and Gore have to say about that?”
Something like that.
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 9:52 pm

tarpon,
The Rutgers data only shows extent. The snow could be an inch deep.
The record snows in recent years in New York, Washington, Moscow, China, Scotland, Colorado ski areas, etc. are an indication of depth.
In 1999, Mt. Baker in Washington set the world’s record for snowfall at 1140 inches.
http://www.skimountaineer.com/CascadeSki/CascadeSnow.html
http://www.skimountaineer.com/CascadeSki/CascadeSnow/MountBakerSnow1998-1999.gif

Larry
March 2, 2010 9:59 pm

NO REAL TREND. I want everybody to repeat that, like a mantra. NO REAL TREND. Because I think that it is becoming fairly obvious that it is the case as to both temperature and snow cover. This is the point that has to be stressed by everyone who gets into it with the AGWers.
Thanks to Willis, Leif, and Steven for your work on this.

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 10:02 pm

tarpon,
I would say that the “normal” way of describing climate is:
Temperatures are rising
Snowfall is declining
Spring is coming earlier
Sea level is rising
The poles are melting
Polar bears are drowning
Penguins are dying
Hurricanes and tornadoes are increasing
etc. etc.
That is what my kids get taught at school.

wayne
March 2, 2010 10:05 pm

Oh, and Steve, just tell others you are stating numeric statistical facts, not trends. Nowhere in your article did I ever see the word trend. Others need to open up their statistics book, or maybe their book is limited. Oh, and by the way, a trend line can have two distinct meanings, one is to statistically determine drift (or levelness) of a number of data points, the other is to establish confidence membership and predict continuation and to this r2 does apply. Your statements a week or so ago on snowfall were merely stating the former, drifts in the data points, not confidence in continuation of a trend (and for this you need at least two points!). So to me, you’ve been right all along! I am finding that some commenters here, which I initially take as more or less experts, also need the eye of a truly skeptical scientist lifetime student.

Peter Jones
March 2, 2010 10:13 pm

The thing about measuring snow cover is that it is really an indication of how large an area had temperatures that consistently remained below freezing. If we were really seeing increased snow due to global warming, the snow would come and melt very quickly and the average extent would match an area that was consistently below freezing, not just the snow occurrence due to extra humidity.
Thus, this is actually an indication of average temperature during the winter. It is a very exact thermometer since we don’t have to adjust for differences in where the solid-liquid transition of water is; we only can’t know how much colder or warmer it is. In any case, it certainly brings further question to the temperature record.

March 2, 2010 10:14 pm

Sorry, I am not understanding how the 2001-2010 decade could have been completed by March 2010. Doesn’t it end in December 2010? Did you mean 2000-2009? Or are these numbers some projections? Or has it become the snowiest already 1 year before the decade ends?

Aaron
March 2, 2010 10:14 pm

God bless you for knowing when a decade begins and ends.
A

March 2, 2010 10:15 pm

I see, these are Northern Hemisphere numbers and the snow that will come after early March is just being ignored…

rbateman
March 2, 2010 10:24 pm

Try running a double graph, one bar being snowfall in the N. Hemisphere, the other being the rainfall for the same.

Ken Stewart
March 2, 2010 10:29 pm

I’ve never seen snow… but I know that I’ve recorded 1472mm of rain for the Wet season, December to February, which is 184% of our average.
Many places in Eastern Australia have broken records for March as well after only a couple of days. See kenskingdom.wordpress.com
This in spite of El Nino and BOM seasonal outlooks predicting warmer and drier.
I believe (NH & SH) seasons are getting back towards “normal” and any trend is in the eye of the beholder.

Dan
March 2, 2010 10:31 pm

To Al Gore:
The forest consists of trees, and climate consists of weather.
If you have enough trees you get a forest, if you have enough weather it will be climate.
Just to get things straight.

Editor
March 2, 2010 10:34 pm

Steve Goddard (21:35:26)

willis,
OK, thanks for clarifying. The graph and trend you presented was for year round snow cover. I’m just discussing winter snow cover though.
The point I am making is that winter snow cover is not declining and I think we are in agreement.

Thanks, Steve. What we can say statistically about both the overall and the winter snow cover data is this.
The trend over the entire dataset is not statistically different from zero.
In fact, it is a long ways from being statistically different from zero, in both instances. In practical terms there is absolutely no trend at all.
Which as you point out, Steve, puts the lie to the modeler’s claims you cited above. That citation says:

20th and 21st century decadal scale trends and variability in winter North American snow cover extent (NA-SCE) are investigated using coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation model experiments participating in the upcoming Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Fourth Assessment Report. … These results suggest that snow cover may be a sensitive indicator of climate change, and that North American snow extent will probably decrease in response to greenhouse gas emissions, although the magnitude of the response may be nonlinear.

BZZZZT! Next contestant please, wrong answer.
The amazing thing to me is that they could make those claims in 2005, when there had been no trend in either the winter or year-round snow cover for almost forty years. If you think snow is a “sensitive indicator of climate change”, and it has shown no change for decades … wouldn’t that kinda be a clue?
This total denial of easily observed reality is a sad commentary on the computer climate modelers, who often seem to be verging on the psychotic … and as the story goes, what’s the difference between a neurotic AGW supporter, a psychotic AGW supporter, and Al Gore?


The neurotic builds climate change castles in the air … the psychotic lives in those castles and never looks outside to see if it’s snowing … and Al Gore?
He collects the rent on the castles, and laughs all the way to the bank.

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 10:37 pm

Lubos,
One of the Rutgers metrics is seasonal snow extent.
http://climate.rutgers.edu/snowcover/chart_seasonal.php
Peak snow cover always occurs during the winter (December-February) period, which is over for the current decade.

Editor
March 2, 2010 10:38 pm

savethesharks (21:52:03)

Willis Eschenbach (21:15:27) :
It was your tone, that’s all. Blog posts can be so impersonal, no?
You said: “I always like to start out with a graph that shows the actual data, not some kind of reduced anomaly.”
You could have said it like this:
“Thanks Steven for pointing out the variations between the seasons. Rather dramatic. Point taken about the climate model errors showing less snowfall.
Check out this larger scale graph which shows no real trend. What do Hansen and Gore have to say about that?”
Something like that.
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA

Thanks, Chris, point taken.
w.

Dave F
March 2, 2010 10:39 pm

crosspatch (20:48:10) :
…for a while but during the Younger Dryas, the Midwestern US had hotter Summers than before the event. The climate became more extreme during the Younger Dryas in many areas with both hotter summers and colder winters than before the event…
So, I must ask, is it possible Earth just contains the same amount of energy, but distributes it unevenly based on greenhouse and other conditions? Other conditions can dictate the maximum amount (or climate sensitivity) the Earth can warm to a certain change? Or in other words, is it possible that Earth has a climate sensitivity that is NOT CONSTANT?

Peter of Sydney
March 2, 2010 10:43 pm

It’s bound to happen sooner or later. The differences between the real world climate and the reported climate readings of the various official sources are starting to show someone is not telling the truth. Which is it? The real climate observation or the officially reported ones? I would not be at all surprised to hear there are people in this AGW game that would say it’s the latter. That in itself proves the AGW thesis is a fraud.

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 10:45 pm

There have been a number of famous instances of roofs collapsing in Russia during the last decade due to heavy snowfall. Including a hockey rink, swimming pool and a market.
http://www.google.com/search?rlz=1C1GPEA_enUS323US323&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=russian+roof+collapse

Steve Goddard
March 2, 2010 10:51 pm

wayne (22:05:26)
Exactly right!

HB
March 2, 2010 10:57 pm

Yay Steve,
I loved the very simple point of your post – it really has snowed a lot lately.
Not here in Melbourne, Aus, but clearly the NH has copped it. Usually an El Nino year will give us a hot summer but not this year. We’ve been cooler as well.

Perry
March 2, 2010 11:06 pm

From http://eureferendum.blogspot.com/2010/03/falling-stars.html
“Forbes magazine, in the persona of Henry I Miller, has him suffering from suffers from narcissistic personality disorder. Amongst the signs he lists, taken from the psychiatrist’s bible, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, is a “pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts.”
We also get, “A grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)” and: “Preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty or ideal love; believes that he or she is ‘special’ and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions).”
Miller notes that Gore’s Sunday op-ed column was entitled, “We Can’t Wish Away Climate Change.” Too bad we can’t wish away Al Gore, he says. But … you can always wish upon a falling star.”
Imagine what state the USA would be in now, if Al Gore had been president?

Michael
March 2, 2010 11:08 pm

Al Gore is Back
Absolutely hilarious.
Greg’s Greg-alogue: 3/2
http://video.foxnews.com/v/4059437/gregs-greg-alogue-32

Nick
March 2, 2010 11:25 pm

HB, metropolitan Melbournes’ summer was warmer than average by 1 to 2 degrees Celsius,day and night,according to your Bureau of Meteorology.
Ken Stewart,El Nino in Australia usually means hot dry spring-early summer, with late summer and autumn often wet particularly in the east and northeast

dp
March 2, 2010 11:29 pm

Some days I wonder about all this and think: no way.
This is part of what my Jeep and I have warmed up (That white ball behind the space station is what I refer to).
http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/image/1003/iss_sts130_big.jpg
Well – I had to use my Dodge pickup, too. As a result the world is in peril. If it’s any consolation I don’t have my airplane any longer, but still – AGW is really all my fault.
All seriousness aside, what I see in that photo is a huge spherical radiator, half of which is exposed to the night time sky and its unforgiving -70º heat sink, and much of the other half hiding behind clouds. It’s difficult to imagine the temperature on the surface of the ball is anywhere near stable over time. And I guess it’s not.

Michael
March 2, 2010 11:45 pm

My latest upload on Youtube
The State of AGW Climate Change Theory 3-1-2010

Michael
March 2, 2010 11:55 pm

See my previous video post at 6:20 to see Nathan Thurn in that one.
Nathan Thurm interviewed by Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

wayne
March 3, 2010 12:00 am

Steve Goddard (22:51:25) :
Thanks Steve, it took a week of some digging to finally get my mind set straight, to me anyway.
And Leif, this is not meant against you, but contraire, I owe you a big thanks for pointing me in the right direction. I seem to have looked at these finer points of statistics in the wrong way for years. Other people of science had hood-winked me on these points before, using statistics as the hammer. Hopefully, never so easily again. However, don’t jump too fast to say someone is implying continuation of a trend within a certain confidence level when they may merely be saying, statistically, the points plotted against time are pointing up, level, or downward within a certain range, no continuation of confidence said, meant, or implied. Once again, if this is wrong, let me know, I am always trying to learn the next thing I do not know.

Michael
March 3, 2010 12:18 am

I think I’m seeing a pattern here. This is how the extreme environmental thoughts were implanted in the sheeples brains through SNL among other places. This video is the precursor to the Green Police videos. It may have been used for test marketing purposes.
Wastebusters! (Nathan Thurm)

March 3, 2010 12:19 am

>>Many regions of the Northern Hemisphere have seen
>>record snowfall this winter, including Washington D.C,
>>Moscow, China, and Korea.
And N.W. Europe (UK and neighbouring regions).
.

John Baltutis
March 3, 2010 12:34 am

Willis Eschenbach (19:09:09) :

Roger Knights (18:58:52)

John Baltutis (17:21:04) :
Not bad for nine-year decade!

“Now that we have reached the end of the meteorological winter (December-February,) Rutgers University Global Snow Lab numbers (1967-2010) show that the just completed decade (2001-2010) had the snowiest Northern Hemisphere winters on record.”

No, ten years. It runs from the winter ending Feb 2001 to the winter ending Feb 2010 inclusive, or ten years.

Maybe I missed something during my Maths classes, but AFAIK:
01-02 1
02-03 2
03-04 3

08-09 8
09-10 9
implying that Feb ’01-Feb ’10 equates to nine years.
Note: Misspelled my name earlier, it’s Baltutis.

Richard Telford
March 3, 2010 12:36 am

Was the decade significantly snowier? If not you really have no story.

March 3, 2010 12:39 am

Roger Knights (18:58:52) :
John Balttutis (17:21:04) :
Not bad for nine-year decade!
“Now that we have reached the end of the meteorological winter (December-February,) Rutgers University Global Snow Lab numbers (1967-2010) show that the just completed decade (2001-2010) had the snowiest Northern Hemisphere winters on record.”

Don’t worry about it, Roger. John Balttutis appears to have trouble counting from 1 to 10.

John Baltutis
March 3, 2010 12:42 am

Ah! After a walk around the cool, night air, I see the error of my ways.
12/00-2/01 1
12/01-2/02 2

12/08-2/09 9
12/09-2/10 10
So, it should read the last ten winters, 12/00-2/10 and not the decade of 2001-2010, which implies 01/01-12/10, inclusive.

Ian E
March 3, 2010 12:48 am

‘ Gary Hladik (17:16:47) :
Wait a sec: the “warmest decade on record” is also the snowiest? Has AGW raised the melting point of snow? Yikes, IWTWT! ‘
OMG – Ice Nine has arrived!

March 3, 2010 1:12 am

Willis; how dare you upset Steve’s wonderful satire in chartmanship and tabloid headlining! 🙂
I saw the graphs and thought I was looking at a RealClimate blog article.
You’d form a rock band if you wanted to make money from noise in the 1970’s. Since the 1990’s, “the buzz” has been to go into climatology. Lots of money to be made from noise.
The choice of the 30-year nominal period to define climate is especially appropriate. Climate was previously observed to occur in significant cycles of *at least* twice as long as that, so profits from “climate change” are a certainty.

Rob
March 3, 2010 1:25 am

Yes, but this is the raw data. You should give us the graph of the “value added” data. I am sure there is a significant downward trend there.

Tenuc
March 3, 2010 1:26 am

I’m sure that when the historians of a hundred years hence try to explain the CAGW global scam, the first decade of the 21st century will be seen as the ‘tipping point’ of failure. Snow is such an obvious event that it can’t be fudged or hidden.

Copner
March 3, 2010 1:31 am

Hasn’t the world population greatly increased since 1967?
And, at the same time, hasn’t the world’s urban population, and the size of cities, increased by an even larger percentage since 1967?
So if the climate were constant, wouldn’t we expect snow coverage to decline slightly, just because of the larger urban areas?

fred wisse
March 3, 2010 1:43 am

Finally a true hockey-stick except for the pure chance interval in 1987 , but even a champion sometimes looses , mr obama can confirm this although algore will detect another rhythm , his new movie will show the inevitable melting of this snow of yesterday

kadaka
March 3, 2010 2:02 am

Well, the meteorological winter may be over. But how about the meteorological spring? Are we heading towards any sort of snowiest spring(s) of any sort of record? ‘Cause I’ve just been outdoors, it’s snowing right now, it’s accumulating, and it’s been awhile since it was all gone. This does not look promising.

Mari Warcwm
March 3, 2010 2:06 am

Kate:
‘Climateprogress is patting itself on the back for displaying a list of scientists who support Global Warming’
I checked out this site. How very depressing. How many of these organisations are being supported by the taxpayers the world over? Should we tell them that we have record snow fall these ten years? How far will the glaciers of the next ice age advance before these dinasaurs notice?
There was a small crumb of comfort – one of the bloggers pointed out that the climate deniers seem to be winning. Hurrah!! Onward doubting soldiers….

March 3, 2010 2:15 am

Peter Jones: “Thus, this is actually an indication of average temperature during the winter. It is a very exact thermometer since we don’t have to adjust for differences in where the solid-liquid transition of water is; we only can’t know how much colder or warmer it is. In any case, it certainly brings further question to the temperature record.”
Peter, that would be true if the temperature were the only variant. However, if e.g. the quantity of precipitation were to increase, then you would get more snow – so by one argument more snow cover, but as I know to my cost (spoilt weekends) more precipitation can also mean more rain which very quickly wipes the Scottish hills of snow.
It should also be possible to get less snow with the same amount of precipitation if e.g. the day-night variation increases, in that snow melts during the heat of the day and even if the cold of the night averages out the temperature, the added cold cannot remake the lost snow.
There will be other factors like the type of snow (fluffy stuff melts quicker compared to granular) vegetative ground cover (snow melts on concrete but settles on grass)

Clive E Burkland
March 3, 2010 2:18 am

The snowfall short term trends over 50 years may not show the complete picture.
While agreeing with Willis re the thermostat theory (how do you post your graphs?) the dataset is quite limited. 1976 although coming out of a cool era cannot be compared with a solar grand minimum, the thermostat perhaps works better when the solar measures are on the increase.
Lets visit the same graph in 10 years time. Its early days.

Editor
March 3, 2010 2:26 am

Bernd Felsche (01:12:54) : edit

Willis; how dare you upset Steve’s wonderful satire in chartmanship and tabloid headlining! 🙂

Dang … if that was satire, it went entirely over my head. Steve, was that satire? I’m losing my touch …

March 3, 2010 2:30 am

Why haven’t I seen this before?
Offsets for cheating on your spouse!

March 3, 2010 2:31 am

Robert E. Phelan (17:34:31) :
I also remember that very cold winter of 1976-77. The sea-ice was pretty amazing up in Maine, and I remember harbors had troubles with sea-ice all the way down to Chesapeake Bay. This winter is balmy, up in the northeast, by comparison.
I think that 1976-77 winter might be repeated once the AMO enters its cold phase. As I recall both the AMO and PDO were in their cold phases back then.
In 1976-77 a ridge of high pressure got stuck out west, and California was sunny with a drought all winter. The jet stream curved all the way up to Alaska, and I think their winter was mild, at least near the coast. However the jet stream then curved around, and came southeast clear down to the Gulf of Mexico, before turning back up to the northeast. In Maine the winds shifted to the northwest in October and pretty much stayed northwest for months, only occasionally shifting northeast for storms. The colder AMO did not put up such a fight against the cold as it did this year.
This year the clash between the arctic flow from the northwest and the warmer AMO has allowed the big blizzards to blow up along the mid-Atlantic coast. As these storms have exploded the north side of the storms have drawn milder, maritime air east over Eastern Canada. On several occasions I’ve seen the moisture thrown all the way west to Chicago, even as the arctic air plunged all the way south to Florida. On one occasion it was colder in Augusta Georgia than it was in Augusta Maine.
If I was judging the winter simply by how often the water buckets froze in my barn, I’d have to call it a mild winter, in New Hampshire. I thank the warm phase of the AMO, but know that is going to change in the next few years.

Peter Jones
March 3, 2010 2:42 am

Mike Haseler
My point is, that we have all seen how we can’t trust the temperature record due to the problems with siting weather stations. Since Snow Extent is an area measurement, then we know region that has maintained cold enough temperatures to not lose snow cover. Moreover, while there are other variants, we have this observational record for the complete area and we don’t have to worry about sampling bias and homogenization. Yes, it is a more crude assessment, where snow will melt as some function of the thickness and the average high temperature for the day, but the thing is that we have the data for every single point on the map. We can’t get a fuller dataset.

March 3, 2010 2:43 am

Doesn’t count — it’s not *multi-year* snow.
Yet…

HectorK
March 3, 2010 3:11 am

Sorry…. OT I know but after a brief lull it appears the BBC are right back on it! Global Warming the child killer!!!
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8533937.stm
Have we heard too much about climate change? Are people switching off the subject, particularly as we in the UK go through the coldest, snowiest winter for many years, and the media is full of stories about the climate sceptics?
The Lancet medical journal has had two special editions on the subject during the last year, which show that children, the most vulnerable in any community, are already dying in large numbers in poor countries as a result of a warming world.
To a paediatrician, this would be a devastating response, coming just as health professionals are accepting not only that lives are being lost by global warming, but that the potential health benefits of a low carbon lifestyle would be very, very big.
Little has been said in the media about climate change and health – usually what we hear about is polar bears, loss of the ice cap, dying species and flood risks.
But much hard data has come out in recent months to show that health is being hit now.
The Lancet medical journal has had two special editions on the subject during the past year, which show that children, the most vulnerable in any community, are already dying in large numbers in poor countries as a result of a warming world.

RR Kampen
March 3, 2010 3:20 am

Re: Pascvaks (16:57:20) :
“Warmest? and Snowiest? Somehow I just knew there had to be a logical connection. Beautiful! This explains everything!”
Of course. More H2O in the air, is just an AGW-prediction you probably forgot. Maybe you consider a temperaturechange from -7 to -4° C as, well, what? Cooling?
How does the snowcover in March hold out?
How about trends in duration of snowcover?

Peter Plail
March 3, 2010 3:30 am

I have seen a number of posts here trying to explain why global warming causes more snowfall – a case of post rationalisation if ever I have seen one.
The point that numerous contributors are making is that the models used to predict future climate trends said that snowfall would decline.
The models made a prediction (well actually they made a lot of predictions) but they got the snowfall one clearly wrong by a large margin.
If I were a climate modeler, I would have to start thinking about revising my model in the light of experience. I would then make a further prediction and wait to see how that model works out before suggesting that people radically change their lifestyles at massive cost on the basis of an as yet unproven model.
There have been sufficient failures of prediction, IMHO, to seriously question the validity of the model(s) used. The excuses given to account for these failures should instead be built into revised models and then tested, otherwise they appear to many rational observers to be attempts to cover embarrassment rather the genuine moves to improve the poor performance of current models.

Ziiex Zeburz
March 3, 2010 3:31 am

The reason behind ‘Global Warming’ ( in the UK )
Dr. Richard North of the ‘eureferendum’ blog has posted the reason for global warming in the UK,
It is political, and financed by the UK taxpayer, here are the results:
Grants for global warming
EPSRC (engineering and physical sciences research council)
grants to study the effects of global warming:
pounds sterling 63,245,372
NERC (natural environment research council )
Grants to study the effects of global warming:
pounds sterling 166,500,521
total $344,631,889
this is only 2 of the government departments that have released their figures,
there are many, many more that have not been released.

joel
March 3, 2010 4:13 am

It was just a few years ago the state of Vermont was suing(?) the US Govt over global warming reducing their snowfall and thus their tourism. They wanted special aid because of this “fact.”
It is amazing. This stinking dead elephant is lying in the middle of the room and they keep saying he is just asleep. It is good they don’t have the power to burn heretics anymore.

Joe
March 3, 2010 4:20 am

Steve,
There is a very good correlation to the snowfall and the signs of an increasing trend.
1967 the oceans surface salinity started to change. Around the equatorial areas where this started and expanded. This salinity change effected the evaporation cycles and created massive draughts. The past 8 years, the north Atlantic salinity declined. Last year a massive die off of salt water salmon that were suppose to return to spawn.
Any sign here?

March 3, 2010 4:26 am

wayne (00:00:52) :
the points plotted against time are pointing up, level, or downward within a certain range, no continuation of confidence said, meant, or implied.
The observed snow cover [that has no trend] is compared to the models’ predicted trend the next hundred years. There is the continuation, said, meant, and implied.

jaypan
March 3, 2010 4:36 am

OT? “Family in Argentina … killing each other in a global-warming inspired suicide pact”. What is Al Gore saying about it?
And how many people, kids are out there, having fears, just not killing themselves? It’s a shame.

Vincent
March 3, 2010 4:37 am

HectorK,
“The Lancet medical journal has had two special editions on the subject during the past year, which show that children, the most vulnerable in any community, are already dying in large numbers in poor countries as a result of a warming world.”
Dying in large numbers due to warming? How? Can you provide some actual examples that this is due to a world that is 0.6C warmer than it was a century ago, and not the result of, say, poverty?

Vincent
March 3, 2010 4:41 am

So that most “sensitivie” of all measurements of global warming – snow cover – has shown no trend whatsoever in the last 40 years.
And to think that Al Gore was just putting his finishing touches to his theory of how warming makes more snow. What a shame.

Joe
March 3, 2010 4:48 am

Steve,
The AGW debate is just the tip of the iceberg. The physcists and scientists have pickles up their butts when it concerns missing any significant research that should have been included in their researches. Science took the wrong turn in not including rotation when they were doing research and theories. So a great deal of science is incorrect including what we think how and what our planet core is created with.
Remember peer review is of like minded people and anyone who doesn’t conform to these areas are automatically dismissed. Even if all the physcial evidence and experimentation are included.

March 3, 2010 4:59 am

Ziiex Zeburz (03:31:57) :
EPSRC (engineering and physical sciences research council)
grants to study the effects of global warming:
pounds sterling 63,245,372
NERC (natural environment research council )
Grants to study the effects of global warming:
pounds sterling 166,500,521
total $344,631,889
Oh, why are people content with the scraps from the table when there’s a real feast: Renewable obligation worth £1billion/year, so far I guess that is a total of: £5,000,000,000. To which the £50,000,000 spent on (failed) wind energy research is peanuts.

OceanTwo
March 3, 2010 5:01 am

Ok, so all calamities aside, I’m sure there must be some scientific paper(s) describing the mechanisms that a fractional positive change in temperature causes an increase in snowfall.
I mean, you know, like, settled science, yeah?
Not that I’ve seen an increase in snow. True, it snowed in SC and many other places which see limited snowfall, but isn’t this simply a weather event? Cold fronts and all that?

Mick
March 3, 2010 5:01 am

Steve Goddard (20:09:32) :
Willis,
I completely agree that the earth has to have a thermostat, given that temperatures have remained in a narrow band for hundreds of millions of years.
Is our sun the thermostat?

Bill Marsh
March 3, 2010 5:07 am

“If I were a climate modeler, I would have to start thinking about revising my model in the light of experience.”
This is not ‘standard practice’ in Climate Science (which apparently operates under a different version of the Scientific Method than other branches of science). In Climate Science, when the model does not conform to reality, you question reality, not the model.

JonesII
March 3, 2010 5:08 am

Hey, Al Baby!, What happened with your Inconvenient Truth…or it´s that you received an Inconvenient Nobel from your Progressives Colleagues?
You have to give it back if you are not a “baby” but a grown up man…are you?

Bill Marsh
March 3, 2010 5:09 am

“True, it snowed in SC and many other places which see limited snowfall, but isn’t this simply a weather event? Cold fronts and all that?”
It is only a ‘weather event’ when it contradicts AGW, if it supports it, it is a ‘climatic change.

ScuzzaMan
March 3, 2010 5:12 am

@jaypan:
Have you read Michael Crichton’s “State of Fear”?
He said that the biggest problem he had was finding a real ecological disaster that he could model his eco-terrorist threat on.
Chernobyl, which should have been the biggest, baddest, terrifyingest, just didn’t stack up.
Why?
Because MORE PEOPLE DIED FROM THE SCAREMONGERING than from any physical effects.
AGW is going down exactly the same track. Will the scaremongerers ever cop to the deaths they cause?
To ask is to answer: it is always “someone elses fault” with these people …

OceanTwo
March 3, 2010 5:13 am

Ziiex Zeburz (03:31:57) :
The reason behind ‘Global Warming’ ( in the UK )
Dr. Richard North of the ‘eureferendum’ blog has posted the reason for global warming in the UK,
It is political, and financed by the UK taxpayer, here are the results:
Grants for global warming
EPSRC (engineering and physical sciences research council)
grants to study the effects of global warming:
pounds sterling 63,245,372
NERC (natural environment research council )
Grants to study the effects of global warming:
pounds sterling 166,500,521
total $344,631,889
this is only 2 of the government departments that have released their figures,
there are many, many more that have not been released.

And here’s the hypothesis:
If you spend all this money, you have two outcomes:
There are essentially no global warming effects;
There are significant global warming effects.
If the former result is presented, the accountability office is going to question such great expenditure to give no results. You could easily have spent a couple of dollars to reach the same conclusion.
Also of note is that the premise has been ‘built in’: it’s given that global warming is happening. And not the ‘good’ kind – ‘global warming’ tends to have an implicit ‘anthropogenic’ component, whereas a ‘warming of the globe’ implies that the globe is warming with no preconceptions.
Suffice to say, it’s not possible to obtain a grant or any funding from any source to prove a negative, because there is no higher authority to hold any accountability.

Benjamin
March 3, 2010 5:13 am

Hi,
Even though i agree with you on many point, i think that taking Dec-Feb is IMHO kind of a biased way to make your point.
If you take the sum of snowcover over each calendar year (Jan-Dec) for NH, you see a smal downward trend from 1970 to 2009.
Same thing if you take Nov-Feb.
I see no reason in taking Dec-Feb.
It’s like the biased IPCC graph showing Northern Hemisphere snow cover for March-April.

March 3, 2010 5:14 am

Mick (05:01:51) :
Is our sun the thermostat?
No, it is getting steadily ‘warmer’. Its luminosity increasing about 1% in a hundred million years.

Peter Plail
March 3, 2010 5:36 am

I have just finished watching a weather forecast from the BBC. The forecaster explained that although it has been the snowiest and coldest winter in the UK for 31 years it has been particularly dry, especially in Scotland. The northerly winds bring snow but far less moisture than the winds that normally prevail from the Atlantic.
Perhaps the apologists for the AGW movement who have posted above would like to reconsider their claims and perhaps comment further here.

Baa Humbug
March 3, 2010 5:37 am

David Segesta (18:02:33) :
“Does anyone have the quotes from the IPCC or Al Gore saying there would be less snow in the future?”
AR4 Chp 10 pp750 “As the climate warms, snow cover and sea ice extent
decrease”.
pp770 “Decreases also occur at high latitudes, where
snow cover diminishes”.
pp772 “Because of this temperature association,
the simulations project widespread reductions in snow cover over
the 21st century (Supplementary Material, Figure S10.1).” “At
the end of the 21st century the projected reduction in the annual
mean NH snow cover is 13% under the B2 scenario (ACIA,
2004). The individual model projections range from reductions
of 9 to 17%. The actual reductions are greatest in spring and late
autumn/early winter, indicating a shortened snow cover season
(ACIA, 2004). The beginning of the snow accumulation season
(the end of the snowmelt season) is projected to be later (earlier),
and the fractional snow coverage is projected to decrease during
the snow season (Hosaka et al., 2005).
AR4 SPM pp5 “Mountain glaciers and snow cover have declined on
average in both hemispheres.”
Chp 9 pp665 “The observed decrease in global snow cover
extent and the widespread retreat of glaciers are consistent
with warming”.
Chp 11 pp 850 “Snow season length and snow depth are very likely to decrease in most of North America except in the northernmost part of
Canada where maximum snow depth is likely to increase”
Box 11.1, Figure 2. “(12) Very likely decrease in snow season length and likely to very likely decrease in snow depth in most of Europe and North
America”.
Theres more but I gave up for now.

savethesharks
March 3, 2010 5:42 am

Caleb (02:31:53) : “If I was judging the winter simply by how often the water buckets froze in my barn, I’d have to call it a mild winter, in New Hampshire. I thank the warm phase of the AMO, but know that is going to change in the next few years.”
That and the the high latitude Greenland block and the accompanying tanked Arctic Oscillation was SO successful, that some of that warmth and higher than normal heights backed into Atlantic Canada and the Northeast.
During the last big storm that brought all the snow to New York City and points west and southwest, but rain to Albany, the polar vortex had plunged south into West Virginia.
It was 40 F and raining in Albany NY and Boston, 32 F with heavy snow in Central Park, and 19 F with near blizzard conditions in Boone, North Carolina.
Truly an “upside down” storm if there ever was one and a testament to such a successful high latitude block, for sure…not to mention the last gasps of a very robust cycle of the AMO, as you say.
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 5:45 am

Benjamin,
Dec-Feb is defined as meteorological winter and is when peak snow always occurs.

Rob Vermeulen
March 3, 2010 5:50 am

For what I know, the models predict more precipitations in the winter, but a less extended period of snow (a wetter but shorter winter).
While you don’t mention it, the annual average snow is indeed decreasing. In what sense do the observations you show then contradict the predictions?

Copner
March 3, 2010 5:50 am

Re: Lancet
Maybe the Lancet will also comment on the 25,000 British pensioners die of cold, every year? Or the thousands of people who die in North India every time there is a cold snap? Surely there be fewer of these types of deaths if the world warmed?
Assuming AGW for the sake of this point: Surely if we’re going to measure impact of warming, we need to consider both positive and negative aspects. Or are cold-related deaths acceptable whereas warming-related deaths aren’t?

Pascvaks
March 3, 2010 5:59 am

Ref – RR Kampen (03:20:16) :
Re: Pascvaks (16:57:20) :
“Warmest? and Snowiest? Somehow I just knew there had to be a logical connection. Beautiful! This explains everything!”
Of course. More H2O in the air, is just an AGW-prediction you probably forgot. Maybe you consider a temperaturechange from -7 to -4° C as, well, what? Cooling?
How does the snowcover in March hold out?
How about trends in duration of snowcover?
_______________________
We are not given to understand these things. These mysteries are for others to solve. Some day, some when, perhaps in a Galexy far far away, a child will be born who will know all (or a lot more than we do) and answer these mystical questions you have posed to me.
I once heard it said that the Roman Empire eventually fell because they used too much lead in their pipes and people went stupid and crazy. I suppose we have a similiar problem in our day and age. Perhaps it is the plastic or the glue we use to stick it together?
“nasa” has recently announced their discovery that the Chilian Quake shifted the tilt of the globe and made a change to the Earth’s rotation speed. Through my superior powers of deduction, and blessed by his highness Leif The Great, I recently commented that Climate variation is a function of Geology, that it is henseforth and evermore to be considered a minor subfield of that Guild of Science. Don’t you agree?
Life’s a beach! Forever changing! Forever the same! Sometimes hot! Sometimes cold! Sometimes stormy! Sometimes calm! Sometimes clean and fresh! Sometimes filthy and foul. Sometimes long! Sometimes short! –I could go on and on..;-)

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 5:59 am

Willis,
Perhaps a touch of satire. ;^)
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/22/science/earth/22warming.html

Past Decade Warmest on Record, NASA Data Shows
By JOHN M. BRODER
Published: January 21, 2010
WASHINGTON — The decade ending in 2009 was the warmest on record, new surface temperature figures released Thursday by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration show.
The agency also found that 2009 was the second warmest year since 1880, when modern temperature measurement began. The warmest year was 2005. The other hottest recorded years have all occurred since 1998, NASA said.
James E. Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, said that global temperatures varied because of changes in ocean heating and cooling cycles. “When we average temperature over 5 or 10 years to minimize that variability,” said Dr. Hansen, one of the world’s leading climatologists, “we find global warming is continuing unabated.”

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 6:05 am

This one is dedicated to Dr. James “tipping point” Hansen

In the natural sciences, gradualism is a theory which holds that profound change is the cumulative product of slow but continuous processes, often contrasted with catastrophism.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gradualism

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 6:13 am

Arctic sea ice extent is approaching a record high in the six year DMI record
http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/icecover.uk.php

Pamela Gray
March 3, 2010 6:19 am

A decade of life counted in years begins on your first birthday (after you were born, you can’t be one years old till you have lived outside your mommy’s tummy for a year). Given that example, if your first birthday is in 2001, on your 10th birthday (in 2010), you will have been on this Earth for 10 entire years.
So for our decade of snow example, the first snow season ended its first year in 2001. Counting forward to the last snow season, it ended in 2010. 10 snow seasons.

Steve Keohane
March 3, 2010 6:23 am

Steve Goddard (21:29:31) : After five months of miserable cold, snow and ice at 45N in Colorado, we finally had a warm afternoon today. We definitely felt the shift in the Jet Stream.
Thanks for a good article Steve. I agree, it has been a long cold winter in Colorado. On the Western Slope it seems like the last two days are warmer than it has been since Oct/Nov, we had none of the usual warm days here and there. I am curious, living at about 39° N 40′, what part of Colorado at 45°N? That latitude is on the border of Montana…

Steve Keohane
March 3, 2010 6:32 am

I wanted to add…I keep daily precipitation records, and started tracking weekly cores from the snow on the ground last week, 2 samples to date. As of 3/1, with the snow pack settled to 16″ from 22″ the prior week, the snow/ground interface is powder dry, ie. no melting down there yet. I think the bitter cold with little snow cover in late Nov. early Dec. drove the frost unusually deep. I know of one water line that froze at 4′ deep. Interesting that three months later that cold has still kept the warmth of the earth at bay. Snow not only has a high albedo, but is a good insulator as well.

David Ball
March 3, 2010 6:35 am

Leif Svalgaard (21:15:26) : “Post again around 2020, when we should know which way the wind blows”. This is the right perspective, Dr. Svalgaard. The problem is that our government is setting policy based on erroneous information. That cannot be in our best interests.

JonesII
March 3, 2010 6:39 am

What about NOAA´s warmest decade ever. Not Opine Argue or Answer?

JonesII
March 3, 2010 6:41 am

Leif Svalgaard (05:14:43) :
A sensible warmist heart just revealed!

J. Newman
March 3, 2010 6:41 am

A thought has occured to me about a key issue in climate research and I beleive I could get a good bit of funding for this new theory.
Surveying the research for many years both warmist and skeptical, this winter I’ve had an epiphany. With this being the “warmest winter on record” per the warmers and this now doccumented record snow extent, there is certainly enough observational evidence to further research my theory that the rise of man made CO2 in the atmosphere has increased the freezing point of water by about 5degrees F. This startling realization cleanly merges the results the greenies come out with and the more real world observations that seem more plausable covered here.
I just need a way to make a ton of money with it…. I’ll call the Goreacle to get things started.
With enough grant money and a united cause for saving the planet I’m pretty sure I can get a scientific consensus that the freezing point of water has indeed changed and it’s plainly obvious who caused it.

latitude
March 3, 2010 6:46 am

Emergency Climate Scientist Meeting Called
With the popularity of the latest weather change handle, “climate change”, falling out of favor, an emergency meeting of climate scientists was called today to come up with a new, catchy, handle.
The popular vote went to “cold front”.

toyotawhizguy
March 3, 2010 6:47 am

@Willis Eschenbach (17:46:17) :
“In fact, the unchanging overall nature of the climate, with only minor up and down natural changes, strongly argues for my hypothesis that the earth has a thermostat.”
Mr. Eschenbach, I agree 100%. Check out the Stefan-Boltzmann law, that’s the thermostat, for the most part, and is enhanced by minor natural changes in the earth’s emissivity. The Earth System is a gray body that differs only from a black body due to earth’s emissivity < 1.0.
A 1.0% global average temperature increase (Kelvin temperature scale) causes the black body radiation to increase by the same amount, but raised to the fourth power, thus the black body radiation increase is 4.06%. If the emissivity of the gray body remains constant during the temperature increase, the % increase in the gray body radiation is the same as for a black body. The reverse holds true for a global temperature decrease, a 1.0% global average temperature decrease is accompanied by a 4.06% decrease in radiation. EM radiation is virtually the only way for the earth system to rid itself of excess heat.
It's interesting that two 19th century scientists discovered and formulated this important natural law of Physics, and over 100 years later, this law is summarily ignored by most of the the warmists, and virtually all of the alarmists.
Joseph Stefan (1835 – 1893). Physicist and mathematician.
Ludwig Boltzmann (1844-1906). Famous mathematician and physicist.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stefan-Boltzmann_law

Editor
March 3, 2010 6:58 am

HectorK (03:11:03) :
Dr Tony Waterston
Consultant paediatrician and chair of the Advocacy Committee, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
“And malaria will be more common as the mosquito which carries it moves into countries which were formerly too cold. Dengue, another severe tropical infectious disease also spread by mosquitoes, will similarly increase. ”
The good doctor begins his sentences with conjunctions and knows nothing about the range of malaria-carrying mosquitos. What an intellect.

Steve M. from TN
March 3, 2010 7:02 am

James Sexton:
earth shattering
heh, best pun in CAGW in a long while 🙂
Benjamin:
I see no reason in taking Dec-Feb.
Because Dec-Feb is considered to be winter. Read Willis’ and Leif’s posts earlier that point out zero trend in over all yearly snow cover.
You know, I can wrap my head around warmer temperatures mean more snow/rain. Great..northern areas get more snow. But, Watts up with record snowfalls in Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Texas, Tennessee, Louisiana (no offense to people that live outside of North America…but this is what I am familiar with)? Florida lost something like 4% of their citrus crop this year to freezing temperatures. Many southern states’ average temperature doesn’t drop below freezing. Here it is, March 3rd, and snowing when average high temps should be approaching 60. Of course I know the answer..this is all just weather and not climate.

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 7:09 am

Steve Kohane,
Good catch. I meant 40N. We had no Chinooks along the Front Range this year. Normally we get a number of days in the 60s or 70s during January and February.

NickB.
March 3, 2010 7:11 am

Joe,
Is there *any* proof that the salmon die off was really caused by global warming and salinity levels as the hand waving suggests?
IMO, and until proven conclusively otherwise, this is no different than the polar bears drownings in the 90’s – an unexplained phenomenon that very well might not be unprecedented. Lets not forget the hundreds (thousands?) of scientists searching the globe for signs of global warming. All they have to do is find a scary short term trend and extrapolate ad absurdum… or point at any spurious/abnormal *seeming* phenomenom and chances are they’ll get their funding again next year.
“ZOMG LOOK BEHIND OUR ICE BREAKER! IT’S GLOBAL WARMING!!!”

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 7:12 am

Winter snow extent is defined by snow falling at low latitudes. Summer snow extent is defined by snow melting at high latitudes.
The physical processes are opposite and probably unrelated, so it makes little sense to average apples and oranges into a trend.

DC
March 3, 2010 7:13 am

OT: Jane Ferringo of the U.S. Geological Survey in an interview
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=124178690
“RAZ: Give us a sense of how much ice [on the Antarctic peninsula] has been lost over the past, say, 10 years.
Ms. FERRIGNO: I think I’ll go back 20 years, and in the last 20 years, I would say at least 20,000 square kilometers of ice has been lost, and that’s comparable to an area somewhere between the state of Texas and the state of Alaska.
RAZ: So about the size of the state of Texas in terms of ice has been lost in the past 20 years. ”
Texas is a little bigger than that – about 700,000 square kilometers.

Pascvaks
March 3, 2010 7:17 am

Ref – David Ball (06:35:48) :
Leif Svalgaard (21:15:26) :
“Post again around 2020, when we should know which way the wind blows”.
This is the right perspective, Dr. Svalgaard. The problem is that our government is setting policy based on erroneous information. That cannot be in our best interests.
———————-
Policies are “set” based upon what politicians think they can get away with and they only rarely do anything that is in the “best interests” of the people who elected them.
Unless “their people” are burning an effigy of them at their county court house –and their local police and fire department are there to participate in said ‘burning’– they are deaf, dumb, and blind to everything except Their Party Leadership within Their Beltway.
People are “responsible” for their politicians and should never allow them to play in the streets, or go swimming without proper supervision. Politicians are like precocious children whose parents ignore them in public and let them run wild –think about it, they really only upset other folks, not good old Mom and Dad.

toyotawhizguy
March 3, 2010 7:21 am

NYT – “The agency also found that 2009 was the second warmest year since 1880, when modern temperature measurement began. The warmest year was 2005. The other hottest recorded years have all occurred since 1998, NASA said.”
Apparently Michael Mann doesn’t have exclusive rights to “Hide the decline”, and it’s widely practiced, even by Never-A-Straight-Answer.
And it’s not surprising that the NYT usually takes the warmist posture, after all they are right in the middle of the greatest UHI hot spot (NYC) in New York State.

March 3, 2010 7:22 am

>> Leif Svalgaard (05:14:43) :
Mick (05:01:51) :
Is our sun the thermostat?
No, it is getting steadily ‘warmer’. Its luminosity increasing about 1% in a hundred million years. <<
The sun also continually loses mass. Because of that, the Earth's orbital semimajor axis must slowly increase. Has anyone calculated the rate of change of the Earth's orbit due to solar mass decrease?

kwik
March 3, 2010 7:22 am

I am pleased to provide a link to an article by Professor Robert Carter, Australia, about Lysenkoism and “AGW-Theory”;
http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2010/03/hansenist-climate-alarmism

rbateman
March 3, 2010 7:25 am

It would be interesting to see the Ice Core data up close in a year-by-year blow.
I’d like to know if both global warming & global cooling are concurrent, and the only difference between an Ice Age and an Interglacial are which one is winning more than the other one at any given time interval, right down to year-by-year.

aMINO aCIDS iN mETEORITES
March 3, 2010 7:28 am

Steve Goddard (06:13:37) :
Arctic sea ice extent is approaching a record high in the six year DMI record
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
Well now, Al Gore says it is disappearing. What will I believe: Al Gore or the data?

Steve M. from TN
March 3, 2010 7:32 am

Rob Vermeulen (05:50:40) :

For what I know, the models predict more precipitations in the winter, but a less extended period of snow (a wetter but shorter winter).
While you don’t mention it, the annual average snow is indeed decreasing. In what sense do the observations you show then contradict the predictions?

Rob, you going to prove that? Lief’s and Willis’ graphs show 0 trend in yearly snow cover and Steve G’s for winter pretty much agree with that.

toyotawhizguy
March 3, 2010 7:44 am

@Just The Facts (21:28:51) :
“So I find myself cheering for sea ice…
Arctic Sea Ice Extent is on an upswing;
http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm
Not so fast! I’m expecting that soon “Bill Nye the Science Guy” will announce that this is due to Global Warming.
[satire=on]

March 3, 2010 7:46 am

Tom_R (07:22:33) :
The sun also continually loses mass. Because of that, the Earth’s orbital semimajor axis must slowly increase. Has anyone calculated the rate of change of the Earth’s orbit due to solar mass decrease?
Yes, and it is negligible.

wakeupmaggy
March 3, 2010 8:01 am

Steve Keohane (06:32:46) :
I agree, it has been a long cold winter in Colorado. On the Western Slope it seems like the last two days are warmer than it has been since Oct/Nov, we had none of the usual warm days here and there.
I wanted to add…I keep daily precipitation records, and started tracking weekly cores from the snow on the ground last week, 2 samples to date. As of 3/1, with the snow pack settled to 16″ from 22″ the prior week, the snow/ground interface is powder dry, ie. no melting down there yet. I think the bitter cold with little snow cover in late Nov. early Dec. drove the frost unusually deep. I know of one water line that froze at 4′ deep. Interesting that three months later that cold has still kept the warmth of the earth at bay. Snow not only has a high albedo, but is a good insulator as well.
Yup, yup from 38.75N at 5000′, also dry desert Western Co. I was just reflecting on the fact that under the latest record dump of 10″ lies not only Dec big snow of 5″ but a bit of October’s, Kevin Trenberth’s famous “January weather”. Multi season snow. Normal here in 25 years seems to be a half inch, gone by noon. Not so the last four winters. Normal ice thickness on a small pond is 4″, last four winters 12″+, added heater.
Our bare surface soil has gotten wet, frozen, cracked and expanded into a froth, letting weed seeds in and leaving us subject to dust storms. Last year we had no hare barley (subject of nightmares), the soil AND the seeds blew away. Usually it’s so dry that the soil absorbs practically nothing in winter, it evaporates first in the hot sun. Of course, there was no hot sun this winter as all the moisture caused a looong inversion. We get steam from two hot dammed rivers too. The Colorado was frozen almost solid in DeBeque canyon, just a trickle at the roller dam out from under the ice.

johnh
March 3, 2010 8:15 am

Christian A. Wittke (21:51:24) :
Same for people that not even after but during one very snowy NH winter declare all the remaining data on Climate Change for being wrong.
Are you all serious? It feels like a Kindergarten where shouting out loud is part of the kids’ development.
First read the title, it contains the word decade so its not just about 2010, second in the words of the Met Office in 2000
http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/snowfalls-are-now-just-a-thing-of-the-past-724017.html
However, the warming is so far manifesting itself more in winters which are less cold than in much hotter summers. According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event”.
“Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said.

An Inquirer
March 3, 2010 8:38 am

Snowguy716 (19:13:01) : … our [Minnesota] summers have gotten noticeably colder with frequent June and August frosts which were unheard of in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. In fact, 2004 set the record for shortest growing season here… only to be broken again in 2009 when unusual cold in early June with two days of temps down into the 20s and another frost in mid August… ”
Can you provide a reference for growing seasons? In my search of growing season data bases, I am surprised by their limitations. Most of them start after mid-20th century which of course is going to give an obvious trend. But can we get several data bases of rural areas that go back to the start of the 20th century? The few that do go back longer seem to show no trend in the end of the growing season. (Several AGW papers that argue for lengthening growing seasons get some issues confused. The fact that various plant species have a more northward extent now can often be explained by increased CO2 in the atmosphere and hybrid developments.)

An Inquirer
March 3, 2010 8:48 am

Regarding the claim of Al Gore and other advocates that global warming leads to more snow: many of us have observed that measured average sea surface temperature has increased this winter, and certainly there is logic to expect evaporation to increase in warmer waters. HOWEVER, what is the source of the moisture for these snow storms? — it has been the Atlantic / Gulf of Mexico! In comparison to the Pacific, these waters have been relatively cooler. Meanwhile Idaho to Arizona has been noticeably dry lately, and they get their moisture from the Pacific.
(Bob Tisdale, I would appreciate any relevant insights or correction or clarification on temperature anomalies by ocean.)

A C Osborn
March 3, 2010 9:25 am

Leif Svalgaard (05:14:43) :
Mick (05:01:51) :
Is our sun the thermostat?
No, it is getting steadily ‘warmer’. Its luminosity increasing about 1% in a hundred million years.
Would you like to change that comment?
Or do we actually have records from 100 Million Years ago?

kadaka
March 3, 2010 9:28 am

HectorK (03:11:03) :
Sorry…. OT I know but after a brief lull it appears the BBC are right back on it! Global Warming the child killer!!!
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8533937.stm

You could have headlined that post with what is stated at the beginning of the article, as it explains a lot.

VIEWPOINT
Dr Tony Waterston
Consultant paediatrician and chair of the Advocacy Committee, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health

Thus we have the chair of the committee dedicated to making a lot of noise and getting noticed, making a lot of noise to get noticed.

The Lancet medical journal has had two special editions on the subject during the last year, which show that children, the most vulnerable in any community, are already dying in large numbers in poor countries as a result of a warming world.

This is of course manifestly obvious. As seen with the children dying and suffering due to Hurricane Katrina, which was caused by global warming. As with the numerous tornadoes, typhoons, and hurricanes worldwide every year, which are caused by global warming. Don’t forget the floods and droughts, which are caused by global warming. It seems a safe bet that many children have died and suffered from the recent record-busting Northern Hemisphere winter snow and cold, which was caused by global warming.
Don’t get me started on the earthquakes, which are linked to global warming. (Because the extra thermal energy has lead to more intense flows in atmospheric and oceanic currents, which has resulted in more movement of and stress on the tectonic plates thus more and stronger earthquakes. See, makes perfect sense.)
One may also consider the increase in malnutrition due to crops being diverted to bio-fuels as being linked to global warming. Shame there is no mention of that in the article, but I guess they can’t fit in everything. Of course this can be alleviated by using more genetically-modified crops giving better yields, but those dang climate skeptics are just so loud in their anti-science crusade it is causing people to reject science even in agriculture. Think of the children!

To a paediatrician, this would be a devastating response, coming just as health professionals are accepting not only that lives are being lost by global warming, but that the potential health benefits of a low carbon lifestyle would be very, very big.

Thus we come to what appears to be the main thrust of the article, Potential Health Benefits of a Low Carbon Lifestyle!
Because, as it is well known, more people are harmed by refrigeration technologies (preservation of food and medical supplies, air conditioning) than are helped when it is powered by dirty fossil fuels. It is only when they are powered by clean renewable energy like wind and solar that any net benefit is seen. Indeed, we may well be better off by getting rid of them altogether. Likewise for heating, if people would just wear sweats and thermals and run around as needed to warm up, we would all be healthier and happier. And the cooking of food? Nasty stuff, kills nutrients, raw is better. Unless one is talking about meat and pathogens, but meat is bad so you should be eating less anyway. Use only a solar cooker, which will also help with the goal of having more meatless days during the week.
Yes, nearly everyone would benefit from getting more exercise. Walk or bike instead of taking the car. But why stop there? Stop using that fossil fuel-based electricity which is killing us and our world. Every home gets a bike and/or treadmill for electricity generation. Just imagine how healthy everyone would be if they had to generate the electricity needed to run the TV as they are watching it. Want to microwave some popcorn? Work for it. It’s for your own good!
Of course, doctors are well known for their complete and utter understanding of science, as shown in the last section of the article.

What can doctors do to help their patients and the government understand that low carbon living offers a great future?
Over the years, doctors have taken a lead in setting health priorities, on topics from sewers and drains to immunisation, smoking and alcohol and road traffic accidents.
Now doctors both locally and globally have united under the Climate and Health Council (CHC). Top doctors in the UK are calling on the NHS to reduce its carbon footprint and the government to set higher targets for reduction of carbon emissions to avoid a worsening health crisis worldwide.

See, they have recognized the need for advocacy and shown their understanding of Post Normal Science, by engaging in advocacy and Post Normal Medicine.
But this part needs no comment, just some highlighting, as it wonderfully shows the depth of understanding on the issue.

And crucially, doctors are curbing their well-known love of travelling by holding video conferences instead, and bringing together medics from India, Africa and Europe for educational meetings without leaving a carbon footprint.

JonesII
March 3, 2010 9:45 am

kwik (07:22:56) From the link you just gave:
Moreover, Copenhagen has shown that the balance of world power has shifted to the so-called BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China). Western countries, including New Zealand and Australia were totally side-lined in Copenhagen. It is now extremely unlikely that an international climate agreement will ever be reached. Thanks to the BRIC countries, we can now all heave a sigh of relief
http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/doomed-planet/2010/03/hansenist-climate-alarmism

March 3, 2010 9:47 am

A C Osborn (09:25:18) :
“No, it is getting steadily ‘warmer’. Its luminosity increasing about 1% in a hundred million years.”
Would you like to change that comment?
Or do we actually have records from 100 Million Years ago?

We understand how the Sun is generating its energy and can calculate very precisely how the energy generation changes with age. We check the calculations by observing the neutrino flux coming straight to us from the solar core and by observing how other stars [of which we have billions of examples] behave as a function of their age. So, no need to change the comment.

JonesII
March 3, 2010 9:52 am

What people, person or group did sponsor in 1988 the then young James Hansen?, The Club of Rome, The Bilderberg group, which one?
On June 23, 1988, a young and previously unknown NASA computer modeller, James Hansen, appeared before a United States Congressional hearing on climate change. On that occasion, Dr. Hansen used a graph to convince his listeners that late 20th century warming was taking place at an accelerated rate, which, it being a scorching summer’s day in Washington, a glance out of the window appeared to confirm.

R. Gates
March 3, 2010 9:54 am

Steve,
Good work…as the last 10 years were also the warmest, and we know with more heat we get more evaporation, and thus, in the winter, more snow. Thanks for providing proof that AGW is correct.
The coldest place on earth (Antarctica) is also one of the driest in terms of precipitation, and the last glacial period was cold and DRY. So it sure makes sense that a WARMER decade would also be a SNOWIER decade. The coldest months of winter in N. Hemisphere are not typcially the snowiest…as in Denver, CO instance, it’s the late winter Month of March that is warmer and snowier.
Warm=Wet
Cold=Dry

March 3, 2010 9:56 am
kadaka
March 3, 2010 9:56 am

A C Osborn (09:25:18) :
Would you like to change that comment?
Or do we actually have records from 100 Million Years ago?

I think you are on the wrong end of the time scale, and he meant 1% increase over 100 million years to come going into the future.
Remember, over the expected lifetime of our Sun, it will expand and eventually engulf the Earth, provided that there is still a planet left to engulf. Thus global warming will eventually destroy all life on Earth, one way or another, if something else doesn’t do it first.
Global warming is our destiny. Do not deny it. Embrace our destiny.

wakeupmaggy
March 3, 2010 10:05 am

kadaka (09:28:22) :
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8533937.stm
And crucially, doctors are curbing their well-known love of travelling by holding video conferences instead, and bringing together medics from India, Africa and Europe for educational meetings without leaving a carbon footprint.
Using computer parts made by child slave wage labor, picked over for parts when broken by waifs in very toxic computer “recycling centers”, (outdoor dumps in rural China).
Guilty, guilty, guilty!

March 3, 2010 10:36 am

kadaka (09:56:38) :
I think you are on the wrong end of the time scale, and he meant 1% increase over 100 million years to come going into the future.
It, of course, also means that a 100 million years ago, the solar luminosity was 1% smaller than today. And a billion years ago, 10% smaller [or 7 degrees cooler – if it were not for various greenhouse gases actually making it 7 degrees warmer than today]

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 10:36 am

R. Gates,
As we have previously discussed, the fifty snowiest sites in Colorado show that most of the snow falls during the coldest months, and December and March are tied for the snowiest. Wolf Creek Pass is the snowiest place in Colorado and receives the most snow during December.
https://spreadsheets.google.com/oimg?key=0AnKz9p_7fMvBdGhHc01yT25Ic0Nvcnc4SWNCWTlnSWc&oid=2&v=1267641169656

Peter Plail
March 3, 2010 10:38 am

I think I’ll shout this so that R gates etc listen, as they obviously haven’t read my earlier post.
The BBC this lunch time reported that this winter has been DRIER than usual despite being COLDER and SNOWIER than the previous 31 years.
Did you all get it – DRIER.

Alec, a.k.a. Daffy Duck
March 3, 2010 10:42 am

Early snow is very bad for ice thickness development….snow is an insolator, early snow=thin ice. Makes me wonder if that has been a contributor to Arctic ice meltback of the last decade

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 10:57 am

a good deal of attention has been focused on the causes of the Ordovician Ice Age. In fact, it is not easy to see how an ice age could have occurred. Atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are believed to have been 8 to 20 times their current values. This ought to have prevented anything approaching an ice age.

http://www.palaeos.com/Paleozoic/Ordovician/Ordovician.htm

JonesII
March 3, 2010 11:02 am

All these intelligent people, who managed to think all the “tricks” involved in Climate Gate, in order to achieve the ideological goals of their masters, must realize that they no longer live in the first and leading world and that their power is over, and the millions of tons of snow that wise nature made fall over your heads was just to mock on you and show you that it is but a silly dream any anthropogenicity.
If you, silly kids, could influence in any measure weather or climate, challenge yourselves to remove by exhaling the noxious CO2 gases you exhale, every time you breathe, at a rate of more than two pounds a day, and which, as you settled science affirms, has the very singular property of heating up anything, to remove one single pound of fallen snow from your front door.
You just don’t realize it: you are nuts! …and the time for you of losing all your fantasies and face harsh reality is here. The sooner you realize it the better for you. Wanna change climate babies?, well, begin by changing one single trait of your character, and surprisingly the world will change a lot for you out there.

John McManus
March 3, 2010 11:20 am

Does snow depth figure in this? I’m Canadian and know that there is a difference between a widespread dusting of snow an a .8 meter Nor’easter.
We have also been experiencing winters with 3-5 20 cm. falls that melt within 5 days when it warms up. Is this factored in ?
Does this report make any distinction between a little snow and a lot or is it just based on a space picture that can’t distinguish mass?

A C Osborn
March 3, 2010 11:21 am

Leif Svalgaard (09:47:29) :
Yes you do, it is Estimated from current Research. That does not make it a Fact.
You are so pedantic with other posters on here, why did you not clarify your remark instead of stating it as Fact, which it can’t possibly be.
Fact as far as we know.

A C Osborn
March 3, 2010 11:23 am

kadaka (09:56:38) :
I did not get the wrong end of the stick, I was asking Lief to be more precise and now he has. But still won’t change what he quoted as a fact and not a CALCULATION.

A C Osborn
March 3, 2010 11:29 am

Leif, you talk about others using short data sequences for Trends, just how many Years of Results have you got to “Calculate” 100 Million Years in to the Future?

Joe
March 3, 2010 11:37 am

NickB. (07:11:33)
Do you mean did I catch a dead fish and disected it to see the cause of death myself?
Or did you mean that the salinity changes in the area declining coincided with the fish disappearing to never return when there was no oil spills or other natural causes off the coast of British Columbia, Canada.
If I was at home, I would give you the report on the salinity changes in the area along with the news story of the salmon becoming extinct.

R. Gates
March 3, 2010 11:42 am

Steve,
Why do you want to change what I post? I said Denver, not Wolf Creek pass, or any of the other sites around the state. Denver’s snowiest month on average (over the past century at least) has been March…and it is also the warmest month of the traditional (Dec-March) winter.
Finally, you keep shying away from the fact that a global cooling (ala the last glacial period) would be more dry, not Snowier. The last Glacial Period was more like Antarctica is, with very little precip.
For it to be snowier, you have to have more evaporation from the oceans, which means more heat, not more cool. No amount of twisting will change these basic laws of atmospheric physics– warm=wet, cool=dry, and has for millions of years on earth.

March 3, 2010 11:45 am

A C Osborn (11:21:01) :
Fact as far as we know.
Many ‘facts’ are ‘as far as know’. But when you know it, it is a fact. Example: The Earth is round. No amount of future research will change that.
A C Osborn (11:23:33) :
But still won’t change what he quoted as a fact and not a CALCULATION.
Calculations can be facts [and it this case are]. If you know the material and construction of a bridge, you can calculate at which load it will break, and it will.
A C Osborn (11:29:27) :
Just how many Years of Results have you got to “Calculate” 100 Million Years in to the Future?
About 12 billion years.

kadaka
March 3, 2010 11:50 am

@ A C Osborn (11:23:33) :
Ah, gotcha, my apologies. I studied his wording and thought that was the problem, didn’t seem to clearly indicate either direction.
Of course we know it is not a completely linear trend. At some point the Sun fired up, as it ages it will fuse heavier elements with reactions yielding less heat, it’ll run out of fuel and cool down. But for right now, in this little slice of time, I guess a linear approximation is close enough for government work (as the expression goes).

Joe
March 3, 2010 12:02 pm

R. Gates (11:42:44) :
No Ice Age is ever alike due to the constant changes involved.
Evolution if you will. The rotation is slowing the planet, the planet is moving away from the sun more, volcanic activity, atmospheric activity, oceanic activity, meteorologic activity, any planetary shifts.
The shifts are gradual as to starve plant and animal life. Hence, very small fossil record of land animals.
But where did all the precipitation come from to form the massive glaciers that inhabited most of the conteninents?

R. Gates
March 3, 2010 12:09 pm

Here’s one example of record warmth for February 2010 and what it can do:
http://www.srh.noaa.gov/sju/?n=record100301
Now where do you think all that moisture that evaporated from the oceans around Puerto Rico went to? Answer: Mostly to Europe in the form of the severe rain and snow storms they saw in February:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/35496312/ns/world_news-europe/
If you look at the satellite maps during this time period, you can almost see the direct bee-line trail of clouds and storms that the moisture from around Puerto Rico made right toward Europe. Combine the record warmth with the extremely negative AO index…and bingo! Big Snows. Basic atmospheric physics…
Warm=wet, Cold=Dry, And Wet + Cold = SNOW!

R. Gates
March 3, 2010 12:18 pm

Joe,
Your question is an excellent one, and really gets to the reasoning behind the AGW prediction that the interior of Greenland will see growth in snowpack while the edges deteriorate, with the net overall loss of ice for Greenland. Remember, warm=wet and cold=dry, but wet+cold=Snow. So, it takes heat to evaporate the moisture from the oceans, and it generally stays warmer near the oceans, but once this moist air travels over the interior of a continent and finds cooler air, bingo, you get more snow! This is precisely what the latest very accurate mapping of Greenland ice has found. See:
http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/vis/a000000/a003400/a003476/index.html
So, in a cooling world, we see the slow growth of glaciers and ice moving from the interior of continents out toward the seas, and in a warming world, we see the slow shrinkage of ice, moving from the seas toward the interior of continents.

JonesII
March 3, 2010 12:30 pm

Leif Svalgaard (11:45:24) :
Many ‘facts’ are ‘as far as know’. But when you know it, it is a fact. Example: The Earth is round. No amount of future research will change that
It depends of the observer, if its blink of his/her eye would be a thousand years, that observer would say perhaps it is an spiral or rather a more complicated geometrical form. So your opinions are not facts but only relative to your aprehension of reality.

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 12:30 pm

R Gates,
So what you are saying is that you expected to see less snow at lower elevations of Greenland because of warming, and also expected to see more snow in Florida because of warming.

March 3, 2010 12:58 pm

While we in the northern fifties were snowed in, Southern Spain suffered the wettest winter in the past 100 years.
Interesting remark by José Antonio Maldonado, president of the Asociación Meteorológica Española (the Spanish Meteorological society), and I quote: “en el último siglo no se ha registrado un temporal de lluvias tan intenso y prolongado como el actual que, en su opinión, contradice las estimaciones sobre el cambio climático en España.”. Translated: “A rainy season as intense and long-lasting as the current one has not been registered in the last century, and in his [Maldonado’s] opinion this contradicts the predictions for Spain resulting from climate change”.
linky: http://actualidad.orange.es/sociedad/maldonado_dice_que_este_temporal_es_unico_en_el_siglo_y_contrario_al_cambio_climatico_386208.html
Of course y’all can know how the deceivers and the deceived would respond…
But remember: the settled climate change science predicted a much drier Spain. Quid non.
PS: I won’t be translating the president’s name, the poor lad 🙂

kadaka
March 3, 2010 1:21 pm

Leif Svalgaard (11:45:24) :
Calculations can be facts [and it this case are]. If you know the material and construction of a bridge, you can calculate at which load it will break, and it will.

It’s simplistic statements like that which can cause major problems. I could trust such a calculation for a simple beam of a homogeneous material, provided it is known the material used had no flaws. However it is still good practice to spec the load under what the calculated amount is “just in case.” And for a bridge, given all the many components that are involved, a healthy margin is best.
But even for a simple bridge that is a mere slab of concrete, your statement falls apart. For such a slab it would be rare that rebar is not used in the concrete for reinforcement, virtually unthinkable to not use it. Well, steel rebar is spec’d to minimum yield strength. Since said calculation would use that minimum value, and rebar (predominantly recycled steel) varies quite a bit batch-to-batch and all that used in a project would very likely not be right at that minimum value, it is more likely than not the bridge will hold at above that calculated maximum load. Far more likely, I would wager.

R. Gates
March 3, 2010 1:36 pm

Steve Goddard said:
“R Gates,
So what you are saying is that you expected to see less snow at lower elevations of Greenland because of warming, and also expected to see more snow in Florida because of warming.”
? ? Steve, Your comment makes no logical sense, and I insinuated no such thing, nor does any climate model indicate such. But of course it seems rather than talking basic climate and atmospheric physics, you’d like to poke fun at the notion that warmth can bring snow, when that is exactly the case, and any Climate 101 class explains this quite well. The moisture that fell on Florida, Washington, NY, Germany, and all the other places affected by the negative AO this winter was evaporated from warm oceans and carried to the point that it collided with cold air brought down from the arctic.
January and February have seen record or near record global tropospheric temps, and that combined with El Nino and the negative AO this winter has given us the big snows and storms we’ve seen. Also, I suspect that the very low GCR count, brought about by the waning solar minimum helped to encourage greater cloud cover, though this is more speculative.

Joseph
March 3, 2010 1:48 pm

R. Gates (09:54:53) :
Steve,
Good work…as the last 10 years were also the warmest, and we know with more heat we get more evaporation, and thus, in the winter, more snow. Thanks for providing proof that AGW is correct.
The coldest place on earth (Antarctica) is also one of the driest in terms of precipitation, and the last glacial period was cold and DRY. So it sure makes sense that a WARMER decade would also be a SNOWIER decade. The coldest months of winter in N. Hemisphere are not typcially the snowiest…as in Denver, CO instance, it’s the late winter Month of March that is warmer and snowier.
Warm=Wet
Cold=Dry

R Gates, you are confused about oceanic evaporation, but don’t feel bad, it is common.
In each hemisphere, the evaporation is the greatest during that hemisphere’s winter season, when the wind blowing across the ocean is cold, and more importantly, dry. Global humidity rises and falls on an annual cycle, peaking during the SH winter. This is because the SH has more ocean surface than the NH , and the SH is windier. It is cold winter temps that drive evaporation, not hot summer temps (or averages).
You can learn about oceanic evaporation here:
http://oaflux.whoi.edu/
This paper is a good place to start:
http://ams.allenpress.com/archive/1520-0442/20/21/pdf/i1520-0442-20-21-5376.pdf
In addition, the glacial episodes are most definitely NOT dry periods. It would be very difficult for continental glaciers to form up to 2 miles thick without copious quantities of winter precipitation in the form of snow.
Certainly, precipitation patterns are different during a glacial episode. For example, the western US was much wetter during the last glacial than it is today: http://esp.cr.usgs.gov/info/mojave/paleoenviron.html but there is no evidence that total global precipitation was any less than we see today.
In fact, because during a glacial period the average position of the polar jet streams are shifted equator-ward, which would result in more cold, dry wind blowing across the ocean, it is likely that total global precipitation was greater then than today, it just occurred in different places.

March 3, 2010 2:02 pm

JonesII (12:30:08) :
“The Earth is round. No amount of future research will change that”
It depends of the observer, if its blink of his/her eye would be a thousand years

This guy would be right up your alley:

kadaka (13:21:30) :
“Calculations can be facts [and it this case are]”
It’s simplistic statements

The analogy is valid, because in the case of the Sun we do know the internal constitution and properties with some precision. It is as we had x-rayed [or gamma-rayed for the steel] every beam and ensured [or mapped it so we can take it into account] that we have a detailed knowledge of every component and material of the bridge. In a sense, the Sun is simpler because it is so hot [and therefore a gas]. We can verify our calculation of the internal constitution of the Sun the same way people peek into the Earth prospecting for oil: analysis of seismic waves. We find that the calculated properties match the actually observed ones very closely. So calculations are good and the analogy with a bridge [of which we know every detail] is good as well.

DirkH
March 3, 2010 2:52 pm

“R. Gates (13:36:37) :
[…]
Also, I suspect that the very low GCR count, brought about by the waning solar minimum helped to encourage greater cloud cover, though this is more speculative.”
Ah, you’re not a simple warmist the, you’re a Svensmark warmist. Now that’s a first.

NickB.
March 3, 2010 3:04 pm

Joe (11:37:55)
What I’m getting at here is that for all I (we?) know this could be another polar bear drowning incident (caused by a storm – not arctic sea ice retraction). It could be (real) pollution, it could be a natural phenomenon… could it be a freak change in salinity (I guess), could it be a change in salinity caused by global warming yes (not the top of my list but sure, anything’s possible).
All I’m getting at here is that there is a track record for knee-jerk reactions to make specious attributions of both precedented and unprecedented phenomenon to global warming. I’d be interested to see a reliable analysis of the incident in question, but for now it seems like fish die-offs (if that’s even a proper term) are not uncommon, and the same goes for trying to pin them on global warming: http://home.att.net/~thehessians/fishkill.html

Editor
March 3, 2010 3:08 pm

Joseph (13:48:54)

… R Gates, you are confused about oceanic evaporation, but don’t feel bad, it is common.
In each hemisphere, the evaporation is the greatest during that hemisphere’s winter season, when the wind blowing across the ocean is cold, and more importantly, dry. Global humidity rises and falls on an annual cycle, peaking during the SH winter. This is because the SH has more ocean surface than the NH , and the SH is windier. It is cold winter temps that drive evaporation, not hot summer temps (or averages).

To paraphrase your somewhat paternalistic approach “Joseph, you are confused about oceanic evaporation, but don’t feel bad, it is common.”
Your citations say that evaporation is greater in the winter. However, this is because the information used is not actual observations. As your cited site says,

Direct measurements of air-sea fluxes are too few to contribute directly to the compilation of the flux field on the global-scale. Our knowledge of the mean and variability of global air-sea fluxes has been gained mainly through the parameterizations of observed basic surface meteorological variables (such as wind speed, temperature, humidity, cloud cover, etc.). The observed quantities are obtainable from ship meteorological reports and satellite retrievals. They are also produced from the numerical weather prediction (NWP) models.

OK, so we’re not dealing with real observations. We’re off into the ethereal region of “parameterizations” (which means guesses that fit our theories) and climate models. Note that they say that the “observed quantities” are inter alia “produced from [models]”. Obervations produced from models?? These guys are so far out into their modelled universe that they think that models produce observations … if that doesn’t ring huge alarm bells for you, you’ve never looked at the guts of a climate model.
The main problem with this approach is that it ignores thunderstorms. These are too small to be seen in models, and don’t show up in satellite retrievals of bulk air qualities.
But underneath the thunderstorms, unseen by the satellites and invisible to the models, storm winds drive the evaporation through the roof. The warm moist air rises in the core of the storm, the moisture is stripped out, and the now warm dry air continues to rise.
At the top of the thunderstorm, this now cold dry air leaves the thunderstorm and begins to descend in the area around the thunderstorm. As a result, because of greatly increased evaporation driven by thunderstorm formation, the bulk air (the air in between the storms, the air that is measured by the satellites and simulated by the models) becomes drier. And since the air over the ocean is drier, this is interpreted by your cited sources as there being less evaporation.
This is a small part of the huge and unrecognized problem with using averages. Nature is not smooth, it has sharp boundaries. What goes on under a thunderstorm is hugely different from what is happening in the bulk air surrounding it … but a satellite or modelled average ignores this small but vitally important area entirely. This gives a very distorted picture of the underlying reality.

kadaka
March 3, 2010 3:26 pm

Leif Svalgaard (14:02:19) :
(…) So calculations are good and the analogy with a bridge [of which we know every detail] is good as well.

No, it’s not. You are saying if you know everything about anything going into the bridge then the analogy holds, you can make that precise calculation. Sorry, real world doesn’t work that way. The rebar is joined together with welding and other methods, introducing variance. Over time the steel components corrode, fasteners loosen, the concrete itself ages, that calculated maximum load is no longer valid.
Heck, even the weather works against you. It rains, the concrete soaks up water, that calculated maximum is no longer valid. Unless you declare that value was an absolute number, then fiddle around and try to figure the added weight of the water so you can do fancy subtraction for the calculated maximum load on the bridge “at that moment.”
And we haven’t even gotten to the differences in maximum loading at a particular point over the span of the bridge due to certain elements, like perhaps more where a support cable is attached and less between attachment points.
Too much possible variance, too many other factors involved. You can’t get a precise definitive answer. A competent structural engineer will give you a number good for official documents that will hopefully avoid all lawsuits, with a healthy margin of understatement “just in case.”
Now, are you saying the calculations for the Sun, out here in the real world, are of similar nature?

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 3:30 pm

R Gates,
If you look at areas of the US which had unusual snowfall this winter, you can see that most have also had cold temperatures.
http://www.hprcc.unl.edu/maps/current/index.php?action=update_daterange&daterange=Last3m
Same for Europe.

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 3:31 pm
R. Gates
March 3, 2010 3:35 pm

Joseph,
Thanks for those links, I shall study them, though I think we are talking about two different things…rate versus total moisture in the air. Mssive amount of moisture in the air only come from warm water releasing that moisture. One bit from one of your links given above says:
“…The nearly 50-yr time series shows that the decadal change of the global oceanic evaporation(Evp) is marked by a distinct transition from a downward trend to an upward trend around 1977–78. Sincethe transition, the global oceanic Evp has been up about 11 cm yr1 (10%), from a low at 103 cm yr1 in1977 to a peak at 114 cm yr1 in 2003. The increase in Evp was most dramatic during the 1990s.”
For the period in question, those were also warmer years in the troposhere, and follow the temperature trendlines. Seems even your link, (at least at first glance) would confirm the general statement that warmer=wetter.
I think for everyone’s general information, a good 101 course on evaporation, humidity, global rainfall amounts, etc can be found at:
http://www.uwsp.edu/geo/faculty/lemke/geog101/lecture_outlines/07_hydrologic_cycle_intro.html
The warmest and wettest place on earth is near the equator, and not at the poles. Warmer=Wetter.

March 3, 2010 4:23 pm

kadaka (15:26:33) :
No, it’s not. You are saying if you know everything about anything going into the bridge then the analogy holds, you can make that precise calculation. Sorry, real world doesn’t work that way.
Yes it does if you make the calculation for the moment where you have just measured all the properties in great detail. The calculation is then only valid for that precise moment, but that is all that is claimed. We do not extrapolate the result of a stale calculation indefinitely into the future while the bridge rusts.
Now, are you saying the calculations for the Sun, out here in the real world, are of similar nature?
The calculations for the Sun show that the state of the Sun changes with time [the bridge is rusting], but we calculate the changes and update the calculation all along, so there is never any extrapolation. Our knowledge is so detailed that we can start with a ball of hydrogen [with 24% Helium and ~1% heavier stuff] and the mass of the Sun and calculate what luminosity it should have 4.6 billion years later and compare that with what we actually measure of the real Sun today and they agree very well, so we have confidence that they also agreed 100 million years in the past as well as in the future.

March 3, 2010 4:34 pm

kadaka (15:26:33) :
Now, are you saying the calculations for the Sun, out here in the real world, are of similar nature?
Here is more about how these calculations are performed
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standard_Solar_Model
The agreements are so good that we can use the disagreements to learn about the finer details of the Sun to get more correct decimals in the calculation. But these are just details, the basic evolution is well understood. Also, by making the same calculations for stars: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stellar_structure
We can check the validity of the calculations over enormous ranges of mass, composition, and age that the billions of stars in the Galaxy present to us.

March 3, 2010 5:07 pm

Ever since I first heard of global warming people were saying “I know it must be true we aren’t getting the snow storms that we had as kids (1960-1970s)”. I would concede that I thought that was right, but I wasn’t sure because a foot of snow looks much bigger as a kid and people remember things differently. It is disingenuous in the extreme for the AGW crowd to now turn around and say global warming causes more snow. They were not saying that in the 1980s and the 1990s.
The 1960s and 70s were a cold period so it absolutely absurd to argue that more snow was caused then by cold global temperatures and that more snow is now being caused by warm global temperature and the only time we have less snow is at “normal” temps. Even the alarmists must see how stupid that sounds.

Editor
March 3, 2010 6:26 pm

Joe (04:20:12)

Steve,
There is a very good correlation to the snowfall and the signs of an increasing trend.
1967 the oceans surface salinity started to change. Around the equatorial areas where this started and expanded. This salinity change effected the evaporation cycles and created massive draughts. The past 8 years, the north Atlantic salinity declined. Last year a massive die off of salt water salmon that were suppose to return to spawn.
Any sign here?

Well … no.
As someone who has spent some time as a commercial salmon fisherman, this seemed … well … doubtful. So as I always do, I went to look for the sources so I could check the numbers. The main source seems to be an article in Nature, quoted here. For the North Atlantic, where the salmon are, the study says that salinity decreased by 0.02 psu (Practical Salinity Units).
Now, the salinity of the big oceans is slightly different, with the Atlantic averaging about 37 psu and the Pacific averaging 35 psu. In other words, the Pacific is 2 psu less salty than the Atlantic. And salmon live happily in both oceans … go figure.
So in fifty years, the Atlantic has gone from 37 to 36.98 psu … is there anyone here that thinks that the salmon care?
Which is why I always say, run the numbers yourselves. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist. I ran the numbers, and I saw that the North Atlantic salinity had decreased by 0.05% … be still my beating heart.
So, salinity changes killing the salmon? Sorry, doesn’t pass the smell test.

Pamela Gray
March 3, 2010 6:29 pm

And since I catch (or rather try to) salmon in fresh water, they seem quite able to handle NO SALT at all, relatively speaking.

Joe
March 3, 2010 7:25 pm

Here is a paper from studies in 2002.
http://co2science.org/articles/V6/N10/C2.php
Here is the salmon collapse of last fall.
http://www.ianwelsh.net/british-columbias-salmon-stock-collapses/
Ruth Curry’s work is quite good in understanding ocean flows, currents and changes.
http://www.whoi.edu/page.do?pid=12455&tid=282&cid=5098

Mike M
March 3, 2010 9:21 pm

Well I was certainly thankful that most of the snow fell well to the south of us this winter; I think we only got about two feet…

Steve Goddard
March 3, 2010 10:01 pm

Kevin Trenberth, a lead author of the chapter of the IPCC report that deals with the observed temperature changes, said he accepted there were problems with the global thermometer record but these had been accounted for in the final report.
“It’s not just temperature rises that tell us the world is warming,” he said. “We also have physical changes like the fact that sea levels have risen around five inches since 1972, the Arctic icecap has declined by 40% and snow cover in the northern hemisphere has declined.”

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7026317.ece

Editor
March 3, 2010 10:40 pm

By one of those loveliest coincidences, I just got my quarterly newsletter for Winter from the National Snow and Ice Data Center. Amazingly, no mention of this latest winter. So I sent them this email:

SUBJECT: Lack of News Letter
I just got my quarterly NSIDC newsletter. I read it, and went away shaking my head.
We’ve just had the snowiest winter in history. It’s covered by all major news media. Arctic ice recovering. Antarctic ice at its highest level ever. Himalayan glaciers not going to disappear as IPCC forecast. Alaskan glaciers have been found to be not melting at the claimed rate.
People everywhere are talking about all of these.
Well, everywhere but the National Snow and Ice Data Center, because heck, why should you talk about snow and ice …
Why no mention of any of those? Instead, we read that you spent taxpayer money to fly halfway around the world to do something really really important at the COP15 fiasco. We get a crossword puzzle. We get a snowtweets project … and not one word about the ongoing changes in the cryosphere.
In the past, your newsletter has not failed to highlight things like “Antarctic Ice Shelf Disintegration Underscores a Warming World”, and “Arctic Sea Ice Extent Remains Low”, and “Arctic Sea Ice Down to Second-Lowest Extent; Likely Record-Low Volume” and “NSIDC Tracks Record Shattering Summer for Arctic Sea Ice” and “Arctic Sea Ice Narrowly Misses Wintertime Record Low”.
But now that the tide is going the other direction, suddenly we get crossword puzzles.
As a faithful reader of your newsletter, and as a taxpayer who funds your salaries, I find this … well … kinda strange, to say the least. Perhaps you didn’t get the memo, but the days of partisan science are over.
Is there an explanation? Or do you just print bad news?
Regards,
w.

Editor
March 3, 2010 10:55 pm

Joe (19:25:30)

Here is a paper from studies in 2002.
http://co2science.org/articles/V6/N10/C2.php
Here is the salmon collapse of last fall.
http://www.ianwelsh.net/british-columbias-salmon-stock-collapses/
Ruth Curry’s work is quite good in understanding ocean flows, currents and changes.
http://www.whoi.edu/page.do?pid=12455&tid=282&cid=5098

Joe, I’m not following this. You claim that the salinity in the North Atlantic is affecting the salmon. I show that’s not so. You come back with a citation about Pacific salmon. I live on the West Coast, I’ve fished commercially for salmon from Monterrey Bay to the Bering Sea, I’m more than aware of the problems with the Pacific salmon.
The sad truth is that no one knows why the salmon are in decline. They have an extremely complex lifestyle. Likely culprits are some combination of overfishing, change in the PDO from warm to cool, destruction of inshore spawning habitat, shifting ocean currents, “first nation” overfishing, parasites from farm fish, and likely some unknown factors.
So I’m not sure what your point is, Joe. What am I missing here?

kadaka
March 4, 2010 12:14 am

Leif Svalgaard (16:23:15) :
Yes it does if you make the calculation for the moment where you have just measured all the properties in great detail. The calculation is then only valid for that precise moment, but that is all that is claimed. (…)

Why do you keep beating this dead horse? The dog likes her meat tender but not mashed to a pulp.
Such calculations of strengths of individual components are known to have issues, destructive testing is still employed. In manufacturing you work with tolerances, minimum and maximum values, thus calculations are affected right there. Rebar is a mass-produced commodity item, not made that critically, you could find strength variances in different spots along the same bar. For a bridge of any decent size, all the concrete will not be poured at the same time from a completely homogeneous mix, there will be variances in strength. Then comes assembly…
For your analogy to hold, you are arguing that a hypothetical Star Trek near-instantaneous scanning will take place on the complete assembled structure, of complete depth at a very fine resolution, from which your definitive calculation can be made with the complete and precise understanding of the exact physical properties of such an assembly and everything in it… With the result being only good for when it was scanned.
Real world, bridge gets a maximum weight classification good for all conditions, with regular inspections over time to verify it should still meet that rating with repairs as needed. And the rating is set lower than the calculated absolute maximum to provide a safety margin.
Yes, I understand that solar calculations are done with time figured in, with recognition of changing conditions, and the results are good for the specific time inputted. I also know about manufacturing tolerances, safety margins, and that maximum loading at-this-moment calculations for bridges aren’t done and have a practical value of essentially nothing. To meet your original (11:45:24) statement, you would be so far into future hypothetical land that with such scanning technology and raw computing power you could know the position, size, and duration of each and every sunspot weeks in advance, which we certainly cannot do at this time.
Now please stop trying to weaken my trust in solar calculations by insisting they can be as relatively sloppy as a bridge maximum load calculation. I would prefer to continue thinking solar physics is much more precise than bridge engineering, if you don’t mind.

kadaka
March 4, 2010 1:25 am

Willis Eschenbach (22:55:01) :
(…)
The sad truth is that no one knows why the salmon are in decline. They have an extremely complex lifestyle. Likely culprits are some combination of overfishing, change in the PDO from warm to cool, destruction of inshore spawning habitat, shifting ocean currents, “first nation” overfishing, parasites from farm fish, and likely some unknown factors.
(…)

Dang, and here I thought the eco-mentalists were certain it was dams keeping them from their spawning grounds, leading to the destruction of dams for the benefit of the fish.
It must be very hard to Save The Earth (TM) these days. You need clean renewable hydroelectric to combat global warming. You need water reservoirs to cope with the droughts caused by global warming. But to save the salmon and prove you are not a selfish human, you have to get rid of old dams that do not have fish ladders, period. You really shouldn’t be adding on fish ladders, or even put up any sort of new dam regardless of whether it has one, due to the CO2 pollution in cement manufacture and the dam construction work. What is an Earth-loving environmentally-minded person supposed to do?

Jimbo
March 4, 2010 2:23 am

Public release date: 2-Mar-2010
“Were short warm periods typical for transitions between interglacial and glacial epochs?”
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-03/haog-wsw030210.php

A C Osborn
March 4, 2010 3:28 am

Now we know why Leif posted this
Leif Svalgaard (17:42:10) :
cyclones 3-5 million years ago: http://www.physorg.com/news186250015.html
“there were twice as many tropical cyclones during this period, and they lasted two to three days longer on average than they do now”
“temperatures were up to four degrees Celsius warmer than today”
on the WMO: “. . . we cannot at this time conclusively identify anthropogenic signals in past tropical cyclone data.” Thread.
He actually does exactly the same thing himself, except he is confident out to Billions of years in either direction, not just mere Millions.
Steve and you critcise Global Warming Predictions out to 100 years LOL, they have nothing on Stellar Scientists.

Pascvaks
March 4, 2010 5:07 am

Ref – Jimbo (02:23:44) :
“Public release date: 2-Mar-2010
“Were short warm periods typical for transitions between interglacial and glacial epochs?”..
______________________
(-; Thanks Jimbo, I needed that.
Why is it that a few European “SCIENTISTS” seem so much better at their game than our “scientists”? Think it might be diet?

Joe
March 4, 2010 5:29 am

The Atlantic is most studied which is why the Pacific in recent years have been putting in machines to record the sudden chnages that are occurring.
http://www.scienceagogo.com/news/20031117204012data_trunc_sys.shtml
Observations of sea surface salinity in the western Pacific fresh pool: Large-scale changes in 1992–1995
Observations of sea surface salinity in the western Pacific fresh pool: Large-scale changes in 1992–1995
Christian Hénin
Centre ORSTOM, Noumea, New Caledonia
Yves du Penhoat
Centre ORSTOM, Noumea, New Caledonia
Mansour Ioualalen
Centre ORSTOM, Noumea, New Caledonia
This paper investigates the variability of sea surface salinity (SSS) in the western equatorial Pacific fresh pool. For this purpose, we processed data collected from thermosalinographs embarked on merchant ships. Two main cross-equatorial shipping lines that are representative of the oceanic conditions in the western tropical Pacific were selected: the Japan-Tarawa-Fiji line that crosses the equator near 173°E (eastern track) and the New-Caledonia-Japan line that crosses the equator near 156°E (western track). We show that there is a strong SSS variability in the region at monthly as well as interannual timescales. This high variability is attributed to the successive passages of a zonal salinity front, trapped in the (5°N–5°S) equatorial band and migrating in phase with the southern oscillation index. We also found the eastern track to be more variable in SSS because it is more exposed to these SSS front incursions. We carried out a detailed study of the mechanisms responsible for this variability; it revealed that the rainfall input acts as a source of freshwater responsible for the existence of a contrasted distribution of SSS (mainly high-salinity waters in the central Pacific and low-salinity waters in the western Pacific). However, the main mechanism responsible for the SSS variability is zonal advection that makes the two distinct masses of water converge, resulting in a salinity front which shifts back and forth in the equatorial band.
Received 18 November 1996; accepted 16 June 1997; .
Citation: Hénin, C., Y. du Penhoat, and M. Ioualalen (1998), Observations of sea surface salinity in the western Pacific fresh pool: Large-scale changes in 1992–1995, J. Geophys. Res., 103(C4), 7523–7536.
Here is a cool map of the Atlantic Salinity changes.
http://www.whoi.edu/page.do?pid=12455&tid=282&cid=897

Michael Ozanne
March 4, 2010 5:56 am

Trouble is that Mr Goddard hasn’t made it dull and boring enough something like this (Starts brushing rust of some very unexercised stats skills) :
Start…..
Testing the Influence of Climate Change on Northern Hemisphere Snow Coverage
Introduction
It has been suggested that increases in global average temperature should result in less snow coverage. This paper will test three hypotheses’ concerning that suggestion against the northern hemisphere snow coverage data held at: http://climate.rutgers.edu/snowcover/files/moncov.nhland.txt
The test set will be:
Hypothesis 1: Winter Snow coverage has changed over time
Hypothesis 2: Annual Snow coverage has changed over time
Hypothesis 3 Earlier Springs, Later Autumns has caused Snow Coverage to change over time
Assumptions
Winter can be considered as months 11, 12 and 01 (November December January)
Early Spring /Late Autumn should affect periods 02,03,09,10 (February, March, September, October)
Method
The mean and standard deviation of each selection will be calculated for each decade and the difference in means and standard deviation tested for significance at the 95% confidence level using the Fisher F test and the Student t Test.
Winter
Visual inspection of the Global average temperature graph in GISS Hansen, J et al 2006 suggests that the period 1966 to 1980 was relatively stable with little net change in average global temperature and we will use this as a baseline against which we will assess later decades. The rest of the data was divided into the periods 81 to 91, 91 to 2000 and 2000 to 2010. The mean and standard deviations were calculated for each set of samples and F and t against the baseline calculated using the standard formula.
Results
Baseline 11/81-01/91 11/91-01/2000 11/2000-01/2010
Mean 41134582 42776492 41347281 41521268
σ 6166676 5402701 5070364 6048009
Samples 42 33 27 30
Base to 81/91 Base to 91/2000 Base to 2000/2010
σd 1337889 1362937 1457637
t 1.227 0.156 0.265
F 0.76757 0.67605 0.96188
t Req’d 2.0 2.0 2.0
F Req’d 1.8408 1.8408 1.8408
Significance None None None
Annual
The data set was divided into the sets 66-76, 77-87, 88-98, 99-2010. The mean and standard deviations were calculated for each set of samples and F and t against the 66-76 set calculated using the standard formulae.
66-76 77-87 88-98 99-2010
Mean 27431721 25428376 24485368 24913328
σ 15703001 16381646 16305789 16677242
Samples 113 132 132 146
66/76 to 77/87 66/76 to 88/98 66/76 to 99/2010
σd 2053090 2048510 2021674
t 0.976 1.438 1.246
F 1.088303 1.078247 1.127933
t Req’d 1.96 1.96 1.96
F Req’d 1.3519 1.3519 1.3519
Significance None None None
Spring/Autumn
The data set was divided into the sets 66-76, 77-87, 88-98, 99-2010. The mean and standard deviations were calculated for each set of samples and F and t against the 66-76 set calculated using the standard formulae.
66-76 77-87 88-98 99-2010
Mean 29545013 27620185 26429362 27540621
σ 16321318 17464479 16246471 16412070
Samples 37 44 44 45
66/76 to 77/87 66/76 to 88/98 66/76 to 99/2010
σd 3759203 3632963 3631156
t 0.512 0.858 0.552
F 1.144988 1.009235 1.011152
t Req’d 2 2 2
F Req’d 1.8408 1.8408 1.8408
Significance None None None
Conclusion
There is no indication of any change in snow coverage in the northern hemisphere on either a winter, annual or spring/autumn basis and that any effects suggested should be assigned to random variation about a stable mean.
Critique
1) I have no idea about any cleansing, homogenisation or aggregation performed on this data prior to its presentation by Rutgers
2) Snow extent is only 1 part of the issue, thickness and mass would need to be considered for a full picture
3) I haven’t taken care to provide exactly similar sample sizes, however the F and t methods do not require it
4) I haven’t taken care to ensure that the same number of winter periods are present in each sample batch; this would increase the risk of a false positive and would have required further investigation if a weak indication of significance had been detected.
5) I used GISS/Hansen to assess a baseline for hypothesis 1. This may be contentious in some quarters.
6) I selected a baseline by eyeball only and identifying a stable period by use of a smoothing or curve fitting function would have been more rigorous.
Further Lines of Inquiry
It’s possible that there is deviation from a stable distribution on a shorter timescale than decadal. I would suggest generating the process control data from the requisite tables and plotting the seasonal groups as 3 element sample sizes on an X-Bar and R chart, using 66-80 as a sample capable process.
This data is hemisphere total, there may be effects at lower latitudes masked by the overall data. I would suggest an experimental design based on ANOVA which would be looking at quantifying latitude and temperature anomaly data.
End….
Ouch that hurt… must exercise more….:-)
So there you go thermageddon postponed by simple high school maths….:-)

Steve Goddard
March 4, 2010 6:22 am

Michael Ozanne,
Thanks for that! A lot of scientists feel that plain English is bad for their reputation. The best ones (like Feynman) use plain English as a primary tool.

March 4, 2010 6:33 am

kadaka (00:14:54) :
Why do you keep beating this dead horse? The dog likes her meat tender but not mashed to a pulp.
I thought that my last post buried the horse for good, but since you brought this up again [and again], here goes [and hopefully this will be last, unless you like to chew on cadavers]:
For your analogy to hold, you are arguing that a hypothetical Star Trek near-instantaneous scanning will take place on the complete assembled structure, of complete depth at a very fine resolution
No, only for the things that are relevant, which for a star or the Sun are only its mass, composition, and age [and to second order if it is part of a binary star or has giant nearby planets – but since none of those things apply to the Sun we can ignore them]. For the Sun, the occasional sunspot is not important for the evolution of the Sun, while a single rebar can have large consequences for a bridge. One includes what is relevant.
you would be so far into future hypothetical land that with such scanning technology and raw computing power you could know the position, size, and duration of each and every sunspot weeks in advance, which we certainly cannot do at this time.
None of these are relevant for the luminosity.
Now please stop trying to weaken my trust in solar calculations by insisting they can be as relatively sloppy as a bridge maximum load calculation.
Rather the other way around, one might consider being less sloppy about bridges [so they don’t fall down so often].
A C Osborn (03:28:17) :
He actually does exactly the same thing himself, except he is confident out to Billions of years in either direction, not just mere Millions.
There is a big difference. We have billions of stars that we can observe and use to check on our models, but we have only one Earth. If we had billions of Earths with different CO2, different ocean/land, different volcanism, different solar variations, different orbits, different biospheres, etc, then we would know how important the different influences were and would likely be better able to project. There is another difference: stars are hot and hot things are simpler than cold things. If I take a modern automobile [with driver] which is a very complex thing, enclose it in a box and heat it to 10,000 degrees, it would turn into a gas with virtually no complexity at all, and its behavior would be a lot more predictable.

March 4, 2010 6:50 am

Steve Goddard (06:22:42) :
The best ones (like Feynman) use plain English as a primary tool.
Complete nonsense. They use mathematics. They [or some, at least] can explain their results in plain English, but only to a point, as natural language is not sharp enough for this – or rather nobody would listen to a ten-hour natural language explanation of something that can be done in ten minutes with the proper mathematics. You even fail to use plain English properly, I’ll let you correct what is wrong with ‘a primary tool’.

Steve Goddard
March 4, 2010 7:24 am

Feynman in plain English :
“I’m smart enough to know that I’m dumb.”
“It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong”
“Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts”
“The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool.”
“If you thought that science was certain – well, that is just an error on your part.”
“I believe that a scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy.”

March 4, 2010 7:41 am

Steve Goddard (07:24:31) :
Feynman in plain English
Feynman doing science:
“The theory of a general quantum system interacting with a linear dissipative system:
A formalism has been developed, using Feynman’s space-time formulation of nonrelativistic quantum mechanics whereby the behavior of a system of interest, which is coupled to other external quantum systems, may be calculated in terms of its own variables only. It is shown that the effect of the external systems in such a formalism can always be included in a general class of functionals (influence functionals) of the coordinates of the system only. The properties of influence functionals for general systems are examined. Then, specific forms of influence functionals representing the effect of definite and random classical forces, linear dissipative systems at finite temperatures, and combinations of these are analyzed in detail. The linear system analysis is first done for perfectly linear systems composed of combinations of harmonic oscillators, loss being introduced by continuous distributions of oscillators. Then approximately linear systems and restrictions necessary for the linear behavior are considered. Influence functionals for all linear systems are shown to have the same form in terms of their classical response functions. In addition, a fluctuation-dissipation theorem is derived relating temperature and dissipation of the linear system to a fluctuating classical potential acting on the system of interest which reduces to the Nyquist-Johnson relation for noise in the case of electric circuits. Sample calculations of transition probabilities for the spontaneous emission of an atom in free space and in a cavity are made. Finally, a theorem is proved showing that within the requirements of linearity all sources of noise or quantum fluctuation introduced by maser-type amplification devices are accounted for by a classical calculation of the characteristics of the maser.”

A C Osborn
March 4, 2010 7:59 am

Leif Svalgaard (06:33:10) :
So if your understanding is so good perhaps you can give us the exact date & time of the next Solar Flare?
And tell us exactly how many Sunspots there will be at noon on the 11th March 2010?

A C Osborn
March 4, 2010 8:03 am

Leif Svalgaard (06:33:10) :
No, only for the things that are relevant, which for a star or the Sun are only its mass, composition, and age
So you also know the Exact age of the Sun as well, my, my, it must be a time travelling machine you use.
No let me guess you Calculated it!

Steve Goddard
March 4, 2010 8:04 am

After 270 comments and two days, no one has disputed my (mathematical) assertion that the past decade had the greatest winter snow extents in the Rutgers record.
It follows logically that we can’t be at a record decadal high, without having increased from any and all decades in the past.

Steve Goddard
March 4, 2010 8:09 am

Feynman wrote several excellent books in plain English, including one of my favorites. “What Do You Care What Other People Think?”
“In one chapter, he describes an impromptu experiment in which he showed how the O-rings in the shuttle’s rocket boosters could have failed due to cold temperatures on the morning of the launch. This failure was later determined to be the primary cause of the shuttle’s destruction.”
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/What_Do_You_Care_What_Other_People_Think%3F