UAH global temperature anomaly, a bit cooler in April

APRIL 2010 UAH Global Temperature Update: +0.50 deg. C

By Dr. Roy Spencer

UAH_LT_1979_thru_Apr_10

The global-average lower tropospheric temperature continues warm: +0.50 deg. C for April, 2010, although it is 0.15 deg. C cooler than last month. The linear trend since 1979 is now +0.14 deg. C per decade.

YR   MON     GLOBE    NH      SH    TROPICS
2009   1     0.252   0.472   0.031  -0.065
2009   2     0.247   0.569  -0.074  -0.044
2009   3     0.191   0.326   0.056  -0.158
2009   4     0.162   0.310   0.013   0.012
2009   5     0.140   0.160   0.120  -0.057
2009   6     0.044  -0.011   0.100   0.112
2009   7     0.429   0.194   0.665   0.507
2009   8     0.242   0.229   0.254   0.407
2009   9     0.504   0.590   0.417   0.592
2009  10     0.361   0.335   0.387   0.381
2009  11     0.479   0.458   0.536   0.478
2009  12     0.283   0.350   0.215   0.500
2010   1     0.649   0.861   0.437   0.684
2010   2     0.603   0.725   0.482   0.792
2010   3     0.653   0.853   0.454   0.726
2010   4     0.501   0.796   0.207   0.634

Arctic temps (not shown) continued a 5-month string of much above normal temps (similar to Nov 05 to Mar 06) as the tropics showed signs of retreating from the current El Nino event. Antarctic temperatures were cooler than the long term average. Through the first 120 days of 1998 versus 2010, the average anomaly was +0.655 in 1998, and +0.602 in 2010. These values are within the margin of error in terms of their difference, so the recent global tropospheric warmth associated with the current El Nino has been about the same as that during the peak warmth of the 1997-98 El Nino.

As a reminder, two months ago we changed to Version 5.3 of our dataset, which accounts for the mismatch between the average seasonal cycle produced by the older MSU and the newer AMSU instruments. This affects the value of the individual monthly departures, but does not affect the year to year variations, and thus the overall trend remains the same as in Version 5.2. ALSO…we have added the NOAA-18 AMSU to the data processing in v5.3, which provides data since June of 2005. The local observation time of NOAA-18 (now close to 2 p.m., ascending node) is similar to that of NASA’s Aqua satellite (about 1:30 p.m.). The temperature anomalies listed above have changed somewhat as a result of adding NOAA-18.

[NOTE: These satellite measurements are not calibrated to surface thermometer data in any way, but instead use on-board redundant precision platinum resistance thermometers (PRTs) carried on the satellite radiometers. The PRT’s are individually calibrated in a laboratory before being installed in the instruments.]

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125 thoughts on “UAH global temperature anomaly, a bit cooler in April

  1. There was much scaremongering here in Illinois; WARMEST APRIL IN RECORDED HISTORY!!!OMG MAN THE BOATS

  2. Actually April is NOT the warmest month in recorded history, well that is only if you selectively IGNORE the Vostok Ice Core Data record.

    If I’m not mistaken the Vostok Ice Core Data is part of the RECORDED HISTORY and shows warmer temperatures have occurred a number of times, thus April’s not the warmest nor are the last years of recent warm temperatures… all still below the Vostok record maximums.

    Anyone care to validate or refute this?

  3. They should make the same question USGS does about earthquakes: Did you feel it?
    …because if we don’t…something is wrong.
    It really happened a few days ago with a supposed earthquake in northern california. It was a hardware error.

  4. This change is clearly the start of the predicted long-term downward trend, and even at just the observed 0.15C/month, we’ll see a temperature decline over the next year of 1.8C, and, obviously, this trend in declining temperature is only likely to accelerate.

  5. With a global recession and high energy prices, they are running behind is laying new black asphalt paving next to buildings. The pavement keeps the thermometers from over chilling.

  6. “slightly”? certainly this two-sentence bloomberg article is “slight”:

    5 May: Businessweek: Bloomberg: Simon Lomax: U.S. Carbon Limits to ‘Slightly’ Raise Jobless Rate, CBO Says
    U.S. limits on carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that scientists have linked to climate change would raise the unemployment rate, the Congressional Budget Office said today.
    If greenhouse gas limits were imposed on U.S. industry, “total employment during the next few decades would be slightly lower than would be the case in the absence of such policies,” the CBO said today in a report.
    http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-05-05/u-s-carbon-limits-to-slightly-raise-jobless-rate-cbo-says.html

  7. Eh! 0.14 degrees Celsius per decade since 1979? Ladies and Gentlemen we are doomed.

    Doomed I tell yah! This is going to be the hottest year EVAAH!

    Returning to something that bears even a modicum of resemblance to reality…

    Whether or not we have a La Nina, it looks like temperatures are “normal”, whatever that means, I hate to make predictions but even without a La Nina I reckon a re-run of 2007 is on the cards.

    Just my 2C

  8. We may pay for this next year rather than this year in arctic ice extent (think 2007 impacted by thinning of multi-year ice in 2006).

  9. As a comparison to Mt. Pinatubo, why didn’t the eruption of Mt. St. Helens have any ‘noticeable’ affect on weather?

  10. Well, California did its part to bring about the decline. Almost exactly 2.0 degrees C colder than the “normal,” or 3.5 degrees F, and was the 12th coldest on record (out of 116 years). see http://www.calclim.dri.edu

    The trend since 1989 for April temps in California is dropping like a stone. Unprecedented in the 116 year record.

  11. Is there any systematic effect on the satellite PRTs due to solar heating and possibly episodic shading? If so, how does that play into systematic error in the measurements? Images of the NOAA-18 and NASA Aqua satellites don’t seem to show a sun shade.

  12. pwl:
    First, I’m not sure what period you’re referring to in the Vostok ice core data, but the standard meaning of “recorded history” is that written by people at a time when the events are still in living memory. Maybe some flexibility for stories handed down orally for a generation or two. Time before that is prehistory.
    Secondly, the headline was “warmest April”, right? Not warmest month. Somehow I don’t think ice cores are precise enough to distinguish time down to individual months.
    Before pouring scorn on a statement, try to understand what it is saying.

  13. the tropics showed signs of retreating from the current El Nino event

    Joe Bastardi forecast for next 9 months, till January, 2011:

    El Nino ending, La Nina coming,
    heavy hurricane season for U.S.,
    rapid cooling in general worldwide going to negative anomaly,
    another cold winter for Europe, Alaska, and Western half of Canada (looks like no warm winter for Vancouver this upcoming year, sorry global warming alarmists but the warm Olympics weren’t caused by man but by El Nino) :

    5/5/10 “Sink-o” De Nino… The Rapid Collapse of El Nino

    4:34 minute video

    http://www.accuweather.com/video/83060117001/sink-o-de-nino-the-rapid-collapse-of-el-nino.asp?channel=vblog_bastardi

  14. Andrew W says:

    “This change is clearly the start of the predicted long-term downward trend…”

    ———

    I love the humor! Now that’s some funny stuff!

    Meanwhile, back in the real world, 2010 keeps on track to be the warmest year on instrument record…May tropo temps at 14, 000 feet is above 20 year averages every day so far. Where is all this heat coming from? Still left over from the fading El Nino?

    The solar minimum is over, and unless we see some major volcanic activtiy (hundreds of times larger than what we’ve seen in Iceland so far) than the next few years are going to be warmer. The small drop from March to April could very well be from the fading El Nino, but with the solar max ahead of us, we’ve got warming ahead over the next few years as well…

  15. I was looking at the UAH ch05 graph Roy. Why the arbitrarily chop off of data mid 1998? It would be nice to compare the day to day temps of 2010 el nino with that of 1998 ( also in first few months of year ), but someone decided not to let us. Why’s that?

    Also, temp anomalys…
    1998 1 0.58
    1998 2 0.76
    1998 3 0.53
    1998 4 0.76

    2010 1 0.64
    2010 2 0.61
    2010 3 0.66
    2010 4 0.50
    the 20 year record high in the 1st few months of the year should be mostly composed of the 1998 peak. But when I compare the data given to the graph, it doesn’t corrispond, and in an odd way. Anyone else want to check to see what I mean?

    http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/uahncdc.lt
    http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/execute.csh?amsutemps

  16. R. Gates says:
    May 5, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    In the real world co2 did not cause the warming this year. El Nino caused the temperature spike of warming this year just like El Nino caused the temperature spike of warming in 1998. El Nino is ending and quick cooling is coming this year.

    Anomaly could go negative by the end of the year. That will be a travesty for ‘manmade global warming’ believers.

    But for those who care about real science, and real data, it will be one more piece of evidence proving ‘manmde global warming’ science is wrong.

  17. meemoe_uk says:
    May 5, 2010 at 4:21 pm
    I was looking at the UAH ch05 graph Roy. Why the arbitrarily chop off of data mid 1998?

    It’s not arbitrary, the satellite was launched then!

  18. Roger Sowell “Well, California did its part to bring about the decline. ”

    Ever since I was a little boy, many strange things originated or flourished in California and many have led to declines. LSD, intellectually-challenged movie stars, rock concerts in paddocks, long hair, free love, AIDS, oil wells in supermarkets, pole dancing, Napa Valley wine, strange religions, NCAR ……. what an inventive place it is.

  19. Here in NH its been pretty volatile, swinging between 10 above to 10 below normal. Just the other day we got an inch of snow with 30 F temps. Today it was 70 and comfortable.

    With ENSO going negative this month, I expect we may see more snow, and probably a repeat of the problems with blight we had last year on crops. Rainfall is above normal, the vernal pools in the woods remain above normal. Hopefully the crabapple blossoms that came out today will fruit this year.

    The arctic bird species we’ve increasingly been seeing at our feeders in the winter have gone north and the yellow finches and blue jays predominate, along with numerous flickers and pileated woodpeckers.

  20. And if you take out all of the fraudulent adjustments there has been no warming at all. Furthermore if you actually adjusted for UHI correctly we would be looking at a negative number….

  21. Just as some predicted would happen, this El Niño was weak and of short duration compared with 1998. So the warming will be short-lived, as April begins to verify.

  22. the thing is he is measuring heat, not temperature; he actually measured the current needed to mainatin a stable temperature gradient between his IR detector and a heat sink, but heat in the form of hv is what he is measuring.
    He converts heat into temperature and then calculates his anomaly. If one were to place a mirror over Australia the the heat given off by Australia would increase, but the ground temperature would drop.
    Indeed, phase transitions of water that cause cooling to the ground could also show up as heat. The calculations, without spectral decomposition, must be very interesting. Even a pair of wide band pass IR filters would help.

  23. Thank you for your comment Derek B.

    In the Vostok Ice Core Data there are a number of periods significantly warmer than the current period by about 2c or so. I’m referring to those periods.

    While the Vostok data was “written” by humans due to means of extracting ice cores and sampling them recently it is “current” history in that sense. Of course the data is from a very long period of time so it predates all of recorded human history except the discovery of fossilized bones. Really this aspect isn’t relevant.

    Yes, it would be nice to learn more about the Vostok Ice Core Data, maybe one of the people more educated on ice core data would be kind enough to fill us in on the details? The precision? The history? What it teaches us about the past and about today? Future ice core projects? How important it is as a proxy? Can it have finer precision? What is it’s maximum resolution? Why is it ignored so much by the alleged climate researchers focused on CO2 nightmarish dooms-day gore scenarios?

    The main point I’m attempting to make it that it is a false statement to say that “this month, this year, this decade, this century, whatever” is the warmest period on the record when clearly it’s not since the records obviously includes the Vostok Ice Core Data.

    Now maybe they actually mean to say the warmest on record using thermometers or satellites or their favorite data set. If that is the case then they need to be more precise and specify what record they are using otherwise they are, ahem, making a scientifically false statement. The Vostok data proves them wrong.

    Worse yet, they are allegedly climate scientists and should know their own field better than you or I.

    Maybe I’m just being persnickety about this point but it really annoys me to hear that it’s the “warmest T on record” when clearly it is NOT! As a scientist one must endeavor to speak clearly about ones work and especially carefully about the positive claims one is asserting.

    I’m simply asking that the “precision bar be raised” to factual by those making the wild claims of doom and destruction. Not too much to ask. Or maybe it is?

    (Oh, on the prior post the grammar on my first sentence was a bit backwards. The second sentence was correctly worded though just in case anyone wondered).

  24. R. Gates at 4:20 pm said:
    Meanwhile, back in the real world, 2010 keeps on track to be the warmest year on instrument record…May tropo temps at 14, 000 feet is above 20 year averages every day so far. Where is all this heat coming from?

    “warmest year” “at 14,000 feet” That’s YOUR definition of the “real world”? Are there even Sherpas living at that altitude? And “all this heat”? ALL what heat? We have no clue HOW MUCH heat there is at 14,000 feet and if we did we wouldn’t know if it was “a lot” or “a little” more or less than than say in April of 1941, or October of 1934, June of 1543, or May of 341… But of course you KNOW that.

  25. I’d like to add, that I don’t think it is appropriate to say that its’ the warmest T on record when the Vostok Ice Core Data shows otherwise. Even to say it is the warmest T on record in a particular data set can be misleading since it’s made out to be doomsday.

    Being misleading in science is a violation of ethics. In case you think that’s just nuts, Richard Feynman is the source of that standard of ethics in science. In Richard Feynman’s own words on scientific ethics:

    “But this long history of learning how not to fool ourselves–of having utter scientific integrity–is, I’m sorry to say, something that we haven’t specifically included in any particular course that I know of. We just hope you’ve caught on by osmosis.

    The first principle is that you must not fool yourself–and you are the easiest person to fool. So you have to be very careful about that. After you’ve not fooled yourself, it’s easy not to fool other scientists. You just have to be honest in a conventional way after that.

    I would like to add something that’s not essential to the science, but something I kind of believe, which is that you should not fool the layman when you’re talking as a scientist. I am not trying to tell you what to do about cheating on your wife, or fooling your girlfriend, or something like that, when you’re not trying to be a scientist, but just trying to be an ordinary human being. We’ll leave those problems up to you and your rabbi. I’m talking about a specific, extra type of integrity that is not lying, but bending over backwards to show how you are maybe wrong, that you ought to have when acting as a scientist. And this is our responsibility as scientists, certainly to other scientists, and I think to laymen.

    For example, I was a little surprised when I was talking to a friend who was going to go on the radio. He does work on cosmology and astronomy, and he wondered how he would explain what the applications of this work were. “Well,” I said, “there aren’t any.” He said, “Yes, but then we won’t get support for more research of this kind.” I think that’s kind of dishonest. If you’re representing yourself as a scientist, then you should explain to the layman what you’re doing–and if they don’t want to support you under those circumstances, then that’s their decision.

    One example of the principle is this: If you’ve made up your mind to test a theory, or you want to explain some idea, you should always decide to publish it whichever way it comes out. If we only publish results of a certain kind, we can make the argument look good. We must publish both kinds of results.

    I say that’s also important in giving certain types of government advice. Supposing a senator asked you for advice about whether drilling a hole should be done in his state; and you decide it would be better in some other state. If you don’t publish such a result, it seems to me you’re not giving scientific advice. You’re being used. If your answer happens to come out in the direction the government or the politicians like, they can use it as an argument in their favor; if it comes out the other way, they don’t publish it at all. That’s not giving scientific advice. ”

    http://pathstoknowledge.net/2010/02/19/cargo-cult-science-a-lesson-from-richard-feynman-for-scientists-of-today-to-learn/

    It sounds like some alleged climate scientists might be in violation of Richard Feynman’s standards I dare say. Their names are well known.

  26. Bruce Cobb says:
    May 5, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    Apparently our friend R. Gates has never heard of the PDO. Amazing.

    Not amazing. It’s selectivity, i.e., cherry picking.

  27. Andrew W says:
    May 5, 2010 at 2:54 pm

    This change is clearly the start of the predicted long-term downward trend, and even at just the observed 0.15C/month, we’ll see a temperature decline over the next year of 1.8C, and, obviously, this trend in declining temperature is only likely to accelerate.

    Pro-AGW humour at sceptics’ expense. It has a frozen pizza quality about it. I wonder how long he’s been waiting to serve it out.

  28. R. Gates says:
    May 5, 2010 at 4:20 pm
    Meanwhile, back in the real world, 2010 keeps on track to be the warmest year on instrument record…

    Mate, that’s nuthin’! The 21st Century is well on course to being the hottest century evah on instrumental records!

  29. Global temperatures usually peak about 3 months after the ENSO. This El Nino peaked in mid-December so the usual pattern would have predicted that temperatures peaked in mid-March. That is what the UAH and RSS satellite temps have shown.

    The El Nino, however, cooled down fairly slowly in January, February and March so temperatures will also cool down slowly in the 3 month lag fashion.

    There is one wild-card here and that is the AMO. Sometime, the AMO spikes in response to an El Nino. This only seems to happen with the larger El Ninos and this one was probably big enough. Looking at the weekly SST series for the AMO region, it appears that the AMO is really spiking this time. This will further slow the cool down so it won’t be until August or so before there is a significant down-turn in global temperatures (to the 0.35C range or so, we’ll be in the 0.5 to 0.45 range until then).

    If a La Nina develops (and the AMO cools down closer to normal), temperatures will decline to close to 0.2C by the end of the year.

  30. R. Gates says:
    May 5, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    “The solar minimum is over, and unless we see some major volcanic activtiy (hundreds of times larger than what we’ve seen in Iceland so far) than the next few years are going to be warmer. The small drop from March to April could very well be from the fading El Nino, but with the solar max ahead of us, we’ve got warming ahead over the next few years as well…”

    You mean just like we did after ’98? Whatever happened to, “Weather. Is. Not. Climate?” Or does that only apply to cooling anecdotes?

    Bottom line: Call me when I can successfully farm in Greenland using 11th century technology and all of the viking graves are above the permafrost. Until then we’re still in the noise.

  31. Look, I am a geoscientist and have great respect for those who gather data about climate. But when someone tells me that 2010 is warmer than 2007, I reach cognitive dissonance.
    Quite simply, I can’t trust these numbers anymore and I will ignore them.

  32. April ’98 was significantly warmer.

    And with that, 2010 slips under 1998 for the honor, and I suspect will not challenge 1998 any longer for warmest year on record.

  33. I do not believe for a second that March was the warmest in history. Both Siberia and Britain reported record cold. China reported colder than normal weather. Antarctica experienced record cold. The arctic circle experienced a normal ice extent, with particularly cold weather in the Baltic. Norway was slightly warmer than normal. Barely measurable. Australia and Canada reported warm weather. The former easily match the latter for area. The map heat areas seem to be most prevalent where there are no thermometers.

  34. Today was 15 degrees warmer than last night, 20 degrees warmer than last week, and a full 60 degrees warmer than four months ago. And I’m glad for that!!!!! I can now stop burning oil to stay warm. Soon I’ll burn electricity to stay cool.

  35. It’s 8 degrees cooler than it was 2.5 hours ago. No joke. My wife watches the temps hourly.

  36. Dr. Spencer, I appreciate what you’re doing. But, likely, like many here, I’ve got some questions. I could and have (in some cases) looked it up myself, but I prefer to hear it “from the horses mouth” as it were. What exactly are you measuring? Are you really measuring the earth’s surface? What technology is employed? Do clouds interfere? Is there an algorithm in place to adequately account for interference? In other words, I’m woefully ignorant of your work. Mercury thermometers, I got that. Your work, I need to know more about it before it can be embraced as knowledge.

  37. Today (May 5) we had mixed rain and snow at 800 ft. above sea level in the Walla Walla Valley (Southeastern Washington State). The snow line in the nearby Blue Mountains came down to 1500 ft. I have lived in the Walla Walla Valley off and on for the past 40 years and this is latest in the spring that I have ever seen the snow here.

  38. David L says:
    May 5, 2010 at 7:01 pm

    It’s 8 degrees cooler than it was 2.5 hours ago. No joke. My wife watches the temps hourly.

    See, proof positive of climate change!!!! If you buy big Al’s absolution credits, you’ll be ok!!!! And then, problem solved, and you can then claim virtue over the less pious polluters!!!!

  39. James Sexton,
    Go to Roy Spencer’s website. He patiently explains many of the answers to the questions you have. Then you will want to read his books!
    Denis

  40. What exactly are you measuring?

    Microwave reflections.

    Are you really measuring the earth’s surface?

    No. Lower troposphere. (And other atmospheric layers as well.)

    What technology is employed?

    Satellites only. MW readings are converted into temperature, so the measurement is indirect. No ground-based sensors. Polar orbits. Since the sensors look “across” rather than “ahead”, measurement of the poles themselves is not possible.

    But it avoids the micro- and mesosite issues with ground sensors. And there’s near-full coverage. It’s probably the best measure available.

    Do clouds interfere? Is there an algorithm in place to adequately account for interference?

    Yes and yes.

  41. The linear trend since 1979 is now +0.14 deg. C per decade.

    Interesting. Raw USHCN surface readings (USA) 1979 – 2008 are over +0.27C/decade. And it’s been warmer since 2008.

    I wonder how that could be.

  42. Denis,
    Yes, some of that was being provocative, some genuine curiosity. I know and understand he has a website. I also know and understand the enormous weight of maintaining one. (Given the full time job he also has.) However, given the weight of the underlying question, it is requisite that all share and give light to the knowledge they understand to be true. IN FULL LIGHT. But, if a tip is required, here is a tip. If you know, go full, go hard and stand.

  43. @MattN
    I agree. After all, El Nino (Modoki is loosing momentum with April lower than March. And look, each month of June to August 1998 was higher compared to April 2010.

  44. evanmjones says:
    May 5, 2010 at 7:43 pm

    Thanks man, you’ve given me much to mull over. I really appreciate that. Even, I’ve seen your postings and I think you’re knowledgeable. I have a problem with this….
    “What exactly are you measuring?
    Microwave reflections.
    Are you really measuring the earth’s surface?
    No. Lower troposphere. (And other atmospheric layers as well.)”

    This tells me the relationship with mercury thermometers on the ground is abstract. The relationship is not well defined. Lower troposphere doesn’t equate to ground. Yet, I see them integrated into the same graphs often. This shouldn’t be. While one can formulate certain one-to-one relationships with microwave readings and mercury pressure, again, they don’t equal. Can you help more? I’m having a hard time with this. IT’S NOT THE SAME. Saying it is 100 degrees in the lower troposphere with microwave readings doesn’t mean much to the pressure of mercury in the glass tube at sea level. What’s the formula? To be clear, I’m not trying to shoot down, I’m trying to understand. I know some will take offense, but I’m not looking to be nice, I’m looking for answers.

  45. R. Gates:

    All the heat is coming from the Australian Governments department of Hot Air, otherwise known as the Australian Climate Change Regulatory Authority, which will be doing absolutely nothing for the next 3 years despite having over 400 staff.

    As for the temps: I don’t particularly care if it’s the warmest year on record; alarmists are still yet to conclusively prove by empirical evidence that significant warming is caused by humans, and not by Nature (and I don’t mean the magazine).

    I wouldn’t be surprised however, if we now sink into a long downward trend as per Andrew W’s comment. I would be equally unsurprised if alarmists try and pin that on humans.

  46. R. Gates says:
    May 5, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    “The solar minimum is over, and unless we see some major volcanic activtiy (hundreds of times larger than what we’ve seen in Iceland so far) than the next few years are going to be warmer. The small drop from March to April could very well be from the fading El Nino, but with the solar max ahead of us, we’ve got warming ahead over the next few years as well…”

    ===========================

    Well I have to give R credit on one thing: being “consistent.”

    Quite nobody on here can “consistently” jam so many misinformed, half-correct facts, or even just plain old bunk, into one paragraph, as can R.

    Chris
    Norfolk, VA, USA

  47. A strange phenom in NE Oregon. No yellow jackets in my open ended pipes and garage eves. Which means no hornets (yellow jackets are their favorite food, besides human flesh). However, I haven’t seen bumble bees this big ever.

  48. savethesharks says:
    May 5, 2010 at 8:51 pm
    Quite nobody on here can “consistently” jam so many misinformed, half-correct facts, or even just plain old bunk, into one paragraph, as can R.

    Oh come on, Smokey is the champ in that department!

  49. Four questions:

    1) Where in the atmosphere does the primary physical phenomenon of the the absorption and retransmission of longwave radiation occur? Or said another way, at what layer of the atmosphere is CO2 at the highest concentration by mass where its greenhouse characteristics will exhibit the largest effect?

    2) What percentage of the retransmitted longwave radiation will be directed into space, and what percentage is eventually directed back to the ground?

    3) What should the effect of a increasing amounts of longwave absorbing CO2 in the troposphere have on the stratosphere?

    4) Isn’t it healthy that someone get on a primarily AGW skeptics site and act as a skeptic about the skeptics? Otherwise, wouldn’t the skeptics just keep agreeing with each other like bobble-headed dolls looking at their own reflection in the mirror?

    And a final comment: It’s very hard to discount this graph of sunspot number and global temps:

    http://www.climate4you.com/Sun.htm#Global temperature and sunspot number

    I’ve studied it, and the data that goes along with it for a long time, as I’m sure many of you have. The effect of the long and deep solar minimum is obvious, as is the effect of this past and now waning El Nino, but even if we get a weak solar maximum, as is predicted and if we get another El Nino, say in late 2011 or 2012, it’s hard not to imagine we’ll see some more instrument record global temps. Why is it so difficult for AGW skeptics to accept the basic physical greenhouse effects of increasing amounts CO2?

  50. Interesting that the Antarctic was cooler and the Arctic warmer in comparison to ice extent at both which was “relatively” high in the Arctic and average in the Antarctic.

    James Sexton said “Lower troposphere doesn’t equate to ground. Yet, I see them integrated into the same graphs often. This shouldn’t be.”

    As mentioned above temperature brightness by the satellite can be measured down to near ground level. It is not abstract, the temperature provided this way wouldn’t conflict with other ways of measuring temperature or else it wouldn’t be used.

    Andy

  51. But it avoids the micro- and mesosite issues with ground sensors. And there’s near-full coverage. It’s probably the best measure available.

    But, as a downside, if the instruments drift then there is absolutely no way of picking that up. The whole upward trend could easily be an artifact, and we have no way of knowing.

    I would actually have more confidence if they were calibrated to direct earth (or atmospheric) measurements once in a while.

  52. For all those people mocking R. Gate for not understanding PDO and cherry picking, I think you should look in the mirror. You will see a straw man looking back at you.

    When you hear statements about how the anomaly is cooling when it is +0.5 you have to laugh. I am still waiting to hear why the earth isn’t plunging into an ice age as was predicted by many two years ago. Shouldn’t the recent low solar activity have had an affect on the planet? It appears to have made little difference to global temperatures. Where have all the sun worshippers gone?

  53. In the UAH plot on top og the page there are 2 dips downwards before the so called Mt. Pinatubo Cooling.
    -approx 1982
    -approx 1985
    The 85 dip is lower than the Pinatubo dip.Anyone knows what caused these 2 dips?

  54. @James Sexton says:
    May 5, 2010 at 7:13 pm

    Dr. Spencer, I appreciate what you’re doing But…[cut]….. I need to know more about it before it can be embraced as knowledge.
    —————————————————————————————-
    No problem, you can buy his new book
    http://www.drroyspencer.com/

  55. @R. Gates May 5, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    “Why is it so difficult for AGW skeptics to accept the basic physical greenhouse effects of increasing amounts CO2?”

    Not difficult at all. I fully accept that CO2 has a greenhouse effect – much less than H2O though.

    Increasing CO2 levels will (everything else being equal) lead to a very trivial and beneficial increase in temperatures and will also promote plant growth.

    But human CO2 emissions are NOT a problem. Forget tendentious and incompetent computer models and face up to the real world.

  56. Geoff Sherrington says:
    May 5, 2010 at 5:04 pm – re California’s innovative but destructive trends.

    True. As an outsider (I’m Texan) who lives here (a two-year “temporary assignment” has now extended to 24 years), I’d say your list is too short. Most recently, just yesterday in fact, California adopted rules to greatly restrict the use of ocean water for once-through-cooling on coastal power plants. Seems the greenies are putting the lives of a few fish ahead of the burden on consumers via higher power prices. I have yet to observe or read about a shortage of fish, though.

    California’s AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, served as the foundation for the U.S. House bill on cap and trade, and the similar bill now pending in the U.S. Senate. AB 32 (and the federal versions) are based on bad science and will choke the economy while doing absolutely nothing to change the earth’s climate, warmer or colder.

    California also implemented strict rules on the smoke from ships calling at the ports – and the USA followed suit closely after. California’s car regulations eventually made it into the federal regs, regarding high gas mileage (the CAFE standards). Car companies are scrambling to comply, and it appears the highway death tolls will skyrocket as light-weight cars are smashed by heavier, older cars. Size matters, at least in automobile collisions. California was also the first (I believe) state to ban smoking in offices and public buildings, then in restaurants and bars, and open-air sporting events. A few other states have followed suit. California (at least in a few places) has banned wood-burning fires in most residences. There appears to be something about smoke that irritates California lawmakers.

    California appears to be testing the limits of how far a state can go with deficit financing, with the average deficit running to approximately $2 billion per MONTH, and no hope in sight of changing that. One might consider that, as the world holds its breath watching Greece teeter on the brink of bankruptcy, California’s economy is many times that of Greece. When this state goes insolvent, everyone will know and everyone will feel the impact. It will not be pretty.

    There is also a loonie mayor in Los Angeles who decided to replace a huge amount of perfectly good coal-based imported power (from Utah) with renewable energy. The state is complicit in this, as the state requires such coal-based power to be eliminated and replaced with high-efficiency gas turbine plants, or (and this is really rich) force the power plants (in Utah) to install carbon capture and sequestration devices. But the mayor decided that gas-burning plants were not sufficiently green, and requires renewable power. I hope to see the day when that plan is fully implemented, and the resulting high power prices, grid instabilities, and citizen revolts.

    California also appears to be an expert these days at exporting jobs to other states, and other countries. AB 32 ensures that California will continue to be a leader in that category.

    On a positive note, though, AB 32’s fate is likely (almost certain at this point) to be decided at the ballot box this upcoming November. Perhaps, just perhaps, Californians will lead the nation in rejecting such cap-and-trade laws. No, wait, Arizona already beat California to it on that one.

    Still, California gave the world some of the best music of all time, including the Beach Boys, Jan and Dean, and Capitol Records right here in Hollywood where the Beatles had their music released before striking out on their own with Apple records. There are also a few companies that make and sell some nifty gadgets and computer software. The California universities at one time were amazingly good at research and doing cool things, but not so much any more. JPL, the Jet Propulsion Lab and Cal Tech still have some smart guys.

    I could go on for pages, but I suspect that Anthony’s readers get the idea. California is truly the land of fruits and nuts – and not the kind that grow on trees. I am very much a stranger in a strange land.

  57. Mr. Gates how come the earth didn’t get cooked when C02 was upto 20 times higher? Also C02 effect is logarithmic right, have you factoured that in? Also is not a rise in C02 a good thing? Seems we were getting somewhat short. Over history C02 is in decline and at 150 ppm plants will get stressed, then there goes my morning orange juice. Now if fossil fuels are contributing to the rise in C02 and if this rise is having a warming effect, what happens when we either run out or quit burning fossil fuels?

  58. “899 says:
    May 5, 2010 at 3:48 pm
    As a comparison to Mt. Pinatubo, why didn’t the eruption of Mt. St. Helens have any ‘noticeable’ affect on weather?”

    Whereas Pinatubo ejected ash vertically, reaching the stratosphere, Mt St Helens blew out horizontally, thus putting far less ash into the upper atmospheric levels.
    Also, Pinatubo is an equatorial volcano, so its ash gets distrubuted across both hemsipheres, whereas St Helens is more confined to northern latitudes.

  59. R.Gates: You ask, “Why is it so difficult for AGW skeptics to accept the basic physical greenhouse effects of increasing amounts CO2?”

    For me, the answer is that to accept a greenhouse effect from CO2 violates the fundamentals of process control. Engineers world-wide laugh at the concept of CO2 and greenhouse gas effect. see the most widely-read page on my blog at –

    http://sowellslawblog.blogspot.com/2009/02/chemical-engineer-takes-on-global.html

    and its companion post at

    http://sowellslawblog.blogspot.com/2010/03/chemical-engineer-slams-global-warming.html

    When the climate science is consistent with process control, then you will have something worth discussing. Climate scientists have a very long way to go on that.

    Also, until AGW proponents take proper account of albedo, especially due to clouds, their science is doomed to failure. Same for heat released in the higher altitudes from rain storms. Same for wind and its effects on temperature measurements. Dust in the wind also has major effects, yet is not a part of any model I have heard of.

    Finally, the entire historical temperature record is corrupt, as Chiefio has shown in marvelous detail. My own feeble efforts showed that hadCRUT3 published data for the USA lower 48 states has essentially zero warming. What little warming appears there is easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat Island effects. (see sowellslawblog and hadCRUT3 temperatures)

  60. This is shaping up to be the hottest century on record in the current millennium.

  61. R. Gates says:
    May 5, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    The reason we don’t accept the basic physical greenhouse stuff is that we don’t actually live in one!

  62. Question: Would all trolls working in government positions please raise their hands? This means you….

  63. The accepted scientific paradigm is global warming due to the presence of anthropogenic CO2 in the atmosphere.

    Is there anything in Dr. Spencer’s article that is inconsistent with this paradigm?

    A: No.

  64. R. Gates: The solar minimum is over, and unless we see some major volcanic activtiy (hundreds of times larger than what we’ve seen in Iceland so far) than the next few years are going to be warmer. The small drop from March to April could very well be from the fading El Nino, but with the solar max ahead of us, we’ve got warming ahead over the next few years as well…

    I really hope you’re right, nothing would be better than having warming ahead of us for the next few years. But unfortunately I don’t think you’re a psychic, so there’s still a possibility that we have some years of cooling ahead of us.

  65. RobertM says:
    May 5, 2010 at 5:07 pm
    And if you take out all of the fraudulent adjustments there has been no warming at all. Furthermore if you actually adjusted for UHI correctly we would be looking at a negative number….

    This is the UAH satellite record which is being discussed. Could you explain what the UHI effect might be?

  66. Roger Sowell says:
    May 5, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    Finally, the entire historical temperature record is corrupt, as Chiefio has shown in marvelous detail. My own feeble efforts showed that hadCRUT3 published data for the USA lower 48 states has essentially zero warming. What little warming appears there is easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat Island effects. (see sowellslawblog and hadCRUT3 temperatures)

    The UAH record shows that the USA lower 48 states has warmed at the rate of 0.21 deg per decade since 1979. Perhaps the warming cannot be “easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat”.

  67. Pam re La Nada. I got it from aurbo May 2, 2010 at 1:52 pm at El Nino Modoki

    “Re the naming of neutral phases of the ENSO, I’ve always been partial to “La Nada”.”

    I thought it was a great name too and I am hoping it will catch on.

  68. R. Gates says:
    May 5, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    Why is it so difficult for AGW skeptics to accept the basic physical greenhouse effects of increasing amounts CO2?

    Because
    1. The increase in CO2 LAGS that of temperature and CO2 is LESS soluble in water at higher temperatures.
    2. Seventy percent of the earth is WATER therefore the solubility of CO2 in H2O just might explain the increase.
    3. WATER is the more abundant and much more variable and powerful green house gas AND it overlaps the CO2 absorption bands.
    4. Plants tell us there was a lot more CO2 on earth and we are presently in a CO2 starved time. (THAT was the real crisis)
    5. The IR absorption is logarithmic in regards to concentration. A look at the spectra shows there just isn’t very much more energy to be absorbed by CO2 so we are at the point of diminishing returns in spades.
    6. Climate is very complex we are kidding ourselves if we think we completely understand all the factors that control it. CO2 is just one of many factors and a minor one at that. WATER is a more likely candidate for a major player.

    And last but not least do not forget the politics involved or the data

    Skeptics do not deny greenhouse gases we just do not think CO2 is the monster under the bed.

  69. @R. Gates Four questions:

    ‘1) Where in the atmosphere does the primary physical phenomenon of the the absorption and retransmission of longwave radiation occur? Or said another way, at what layer of the atmosphere is CO2 at the highest concentration by mass where its greenhouse characteristics will exhibit the largest effect?’

    In the oceans.

    ‘2) What percentage of the retransmitted longwave radiation will be directed into space, and what percentage is eventually directed back to the ground?’

    Well, keeping to the same simplistic reasoning, molecules in the air, about 25% back to earth and 75% to space. Here, I show with picture, right side of earth ) now the co2 molecule . hence ). and co2 molecule radiating back to earth )>. et voila 25%. Simple enough huh?

    ‘3) What should the effect of a increasing amounts of longwave absorbing CO2 in the troposphere have on the stratosphere?’

    First you have to figure if there actually is an observed effect to boot otherwise it’s kind of moot.

    ‘4) Isn’t it healthy that someone get on a primarily AGW skeptics site and act as a skeptic about the skeptics? Otherwise, wouldn’t the skeptics just keep agreeing with each other like bobble-headed dolls looking at their own reflection in the mirror?’

    Sceptics tend to already be sceptical of everyone and everything, that’s the nature of the sceptic. But you’re not being sceptical of the sceptics I hope.

    And the last bit should read: Otherwise, wouldn’t you guys just keep agreeing with each other like the bobble-headed dolls over at RC.

    Wouldn’t you agree that “you guys” actually makes more sense? ;-)p

  70. #
    #
    John Finn says:
    May 6, 2010 at 3:02 am

    Roger Sowell says:
    May 5, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    Finally, the entire historical temperature record is corrupt, as Chiefio has shown in marvelous detail. My own feeble efforts showed that hadCRUT3 published data for the USA lower 48 states has essentially zero warming. What little warming appears there is easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat Island effects. (see sowellslawblog and hadCRUT3 temperatures)

    The UAH record shows that the USA lower 48 states has warmed at the rate of 0.21 deg per decade since 1979. Perhaps the warming cannot be “easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat”.
    ________________________________________________________________________

    I think Roger Sowell was talking about this:
    US temp graphs.

  71. Very strange. I took the data from Dr. Spencer’s site and calculated a fifth column for NH+SH-Tropics. That curve’s regression line is basically level. Didn’t expect that. Seems to lead that all changes in last sixteen months are totally in the tropics!

  72. We have nice pretty frost outside my door this morning at 5:00 AM. It rained a bit in the night so it was pretty slick too. The dogs slid off the porch in their haste to find a good spot to “mark”. With the freeze warning we have had, I am reminded of something my green thumbed gardening grandma counted on. She never planted before May 7th up here in Wallow County. She said that occasionally and without warning, it would freeze the first week of May.

    I bet Gavin or Hansen didn’t have a grandma like mine. But if they did, their grandmas would likely have called them both idiots. Mine was a short, fiery, redheaded roaring 20’s Chicago stage dancer with a sharp tongue and ready wit. I chuckle at the thought of what she might have called them.

    And I never plant before May 7th.

  73. R. Gates

    It is very well known that the lower troposphere temperatures lag ENSO by approx 6-7 months. So if El Nino is just now beginning to fade, we can expect lower troposphere temps to fade in around 6-7 months.

    So, if the recent El Nino peaked around Feb 2010, then we would expect the corresponding lower troposphere temperatures to peak around August 2010 (other factors, e.g. volcanic activity, notwithstanding).

    I’m surprised you aren’t aware of this. I thought it was pretty common knowledge (although I’m also surprised nobody else has pointed it out)

  74. Gail Combs says:
    May 6, 2010 at 4:27 am

    #
    #

    John Finn says:
    May 6, 2010 at 3:02 am

    Roger Sowell says:
    May 5, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    Finally, the entire historical temperature record is corrupt, as Chiefio has shown in marvelous detail. My own feeble efforts showed that hadCRUT3 published data for the USA lower 48 states has essentially zero warming. What little warming appears there is easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat Island effects. (see sowellslawblog and hadCRUT3 temperatures)

    The UAH record shows that the USA lower 48 states has warmed at the rate of 0.21 deg per decade since 1979. Perhaps the warming cannot be “easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat”.


    ________________________________________________________________________

    I think Roger Sowell was talking about this:
    US temp graphs.

    Was he? Since when did Hansen have anything to do with HadCrut3? Also RS talks how the warming can be explained by UHI and adjustments. The “warming” has taken place since the 1970s and is evident in the satellite record as well as the surface record. My point, therefore, is still valid. Whatever the reason for the warming it does not appear to be related to either of the factors cited by Roger Sowell.

    I suggest you read his post again.

  75. I comment here fairly often, but never get even 10% the number of replies that Mr. R Gates gets.

    I’m wicked jealous.

  76. Arctic temps (not shown) continued a 5-month string of much above normal temps

    That’s the big problem. Throughout this winter we had plenty of evidence of a circulation speed up; record snow cover, record ice extent and a strong El Niño are the best symptoms of that, but also several localized extreme events (Canada’s sunny winter, UK’s cold, China’s droughts, etc). This points to increased thermal deficit, but this data set is showing the contrary.

    Does this data set covers the entirety of the Arctic, especially Greenland and the Quasi-Triangle? What method is used to calculate Arctic temperature?

    Thanks.

  77. R Gates
    Why is it so difficult for AGW skeptics to accept the basic physical greenhouse effects of increasing amounts CO2?>>

    I accept them. But AGW relies on a linear extrapolation of their effects combined with a linear extrapolation of increasing acceleration of fossil fuel consumption, ignores cooling effects, and assumes that the effects are dominant over natural processes.

    The facts are the CO2 has a diminishing effect as concentration rises, the planet must radiate heat to space and this increases exponentially with temperature, itz not possible to increasingly accelerate fossil fuel consumption, and the variability of natural processes appear to be so large in comparison to CO2 as to render it a rounding error. Everything I see from the AGW camp is misdirection and obfuscation designed to divert attention from these facts. And BTW, your comment about skeptics all agreeing with one another? sorry, but the best threads on this site frequently feature skeptic camps ripping each other’s heads off over science, and that is how it should be… and is.

  78. Caleb says:
    May 6, 2010 at 6:35 am

    I comment here fairly often, but never get even 10% the number of replies that Mr. R Gates gets.

    I’m wicked jealous.

    Perhaps you speak more sense.

  79. Caleb says:
    May 6, 2010 at 6:35 am

    I comment here fairly often, but never get even 10% the number of replies that Mr. R Gates gets.

    I’m wicked jealous.

    That’s because you speak the common sense of observations.

  80. John Finn says:
    May 6, 2010 at 3:02 am

    The UAH record shows that the USA lower 48 states has warmed at the rate of 0.21 deg per decade since 1979. Perhaps the warming cannot be “easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat”.

    Too bad the UAH can’t go back another 30 years … we might see a .21 deg/decade drop.

  81. “UAH Global Temperature Anomaly, A Bit Cooler In April”

    Does anyone else have the feeling that if we had UAH Global Temp Anomaly Data for the past 10,000 years that the comments would be ‘nearly’ the same? Watching interglacial temperature chart changes each month is like watching paint dry. I’m now fairly convinced that our species does not think well when the temp is warm. I don’t think CO2 or the flatulance of cows, pigs, birds, or people has anything to do with it. But factories and volcanoes, now that’s a different can of worms.

  82. evanmjones says:
    May 5, 2010 at 7:43 pm

    What exactly are you measuring?

    Microwave reflections.

    Are you really measuring the earth’s surface?

    No. Lower troposphere. (And other atmospheric layers as well.)

    What technology is employed?

    Satellites only. MW readings are converted into temperature, so the measurement is indirect. No ground-based sensors. Polar orbits. Since the sensors look “across” rather than “ahead”, measurement of the poles themselves is not possible.

    But it avoids the micro- and mesosite issues with ground sensors. And there’s near-full coverage. It’s probably the best measure available.

    Do clouds interfere? Is there an algorithm in place to adequately account for interference?

    Yes and yes.
    ———————————-
    Not entirely accurate evanmjones.

    The MSU/AMSU record measures emission of microwaves at 53 GHz I believe (if they use AMSU Channel 5). The sensitivity of this emission (primarily from Oxygen molecules) peaks at about 5 km above the surface. It is still sensitive a tiny bit at the surface and even at 20 km or so (but the sensitivity decreases above and below 5km).

    Measurements of the poles IS possible. This is a polar-orbiting cross-track scanner. Look up NOAA-18 AMSU and you’ll see the orbital characteristics and scan geometry. It actually samples polar regions more than once a day, which actually begs the question of which observations they use – where as regions between + and – 30 degrees latitude are sampled twice a day (satellite descending and ascending).

    The key to the MSU/AMSU record is equatorial crossing time remaining the same across all platforms, from the first MSU to the now included AMSU on NOAA-18. Orbits drift (sometimes by 5-10 hours over the life of the satellite), and they have to apply a correction to account for the differences in microwave observations you would expect if you measured the same location at different times (big difference in temperatures over desert at 2PM and 6PM local time). Not to mention differences between all the MSU or AMSU instrument characteristics, noise levels, degradation over the life of the instrument, etc. These all have to be accounted for and a correction applied to all instruments to make the record consistent, and it helps to have the lifetime of a couple MSU/AMSUs overlap. Starting in late 2011 we’ll have ATMS replacing AMSU.

    There is also scan dependence in observations from MSU/AMSU (depending on scan angle) – I’m not sure how that is handled. There is negligible effect from cloud, but a little from ice clouds, mainly only deep convection and large graupel particles (which would cool the observations).

    Although it would seem to not have some of the issues associated with surface observing systems, it is not without its own issues. The difference seems to be that at least UAH recognizes the shortcomings and tries their best to improve the accuracy – where as “others” ignore even the most basic issues like UHI, ASOS siting, etc.

  83. R. Gates: The solar minimum is over, and unless we see some major volcanic activtiy (hundreds of times larger than what we’ve seen in Iceland so far) than the next few years are going to be warmer. The small drop from March to April could very well be from the fading El Nino, but with the solar max ahead of us, we’ve got warming ahead over the next few years as well…
    *
    *
    Isn’t that remark a thinly veiled admission of that fact that so-called ‘AGW’ is actually a fiction?

    IF CO2 were really the driver of any kind of warming, then regardless the minor vagaries of the Sun and whatever volcanoes, the temperature would still have risen. That it has not puts the truth to the matter.

  84. John Finn replied
    Roger Sowell says:
    May 5, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    Finally, the entire historical temperature record is corrupt, as Chiefio has shown in marvelous detail. My own feeble efforts showed that hadCRUT3 published data for the USA lower 48 states has essentially zero warming. What little warming appears there is easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat Island effects. (see sowellslawblog and hadCRUT3 temperatures)

    The UAH record shows that the USA lower 48 states has warmed at the rate of 0.21 deg per decade since 1979. Perhaps the warming cannot be “easily explained by population growth and Urban Heat”.

    *
    *
    Tunnel vision.
    If the only thing you see is what you want to see to the exclusion of all other things, then you are looking through a tunnel.
    What about temperatures since the Little Ice Age? What about prior times?
    If you’re inclined to ignore everything save that point on a graph which exhibits a rising trend, then you’ve tossed the baby with the bath water.

  85. John Finn said:
    Was he? Since when did Hansen have anything to do with HadCrut3? Also RS talks how the warming can be explained by UHI and adjustments. The “warming” has taken place since the 1970s and is evident in the satellite record as well as the surface record. My point, therefore, is still valid. Whatever the reason for the warming it does not appear to be related to either of the factors cited by Roger Sowell.

    I suggest you read his post again.
    *
    *
    Satellite measurements which reenforce questionable Earth-based measurements are valid for one purpose only: They confirm the fact that a bias in measurement was made.

    Since in almost all cases the preferred location of referenced sensors happens to be in large urban areas, with little if any being used in the rural areas, then using a satellite to confirm the error and calling it good is the height of intellectual dishonesty.

    Further, if the satellite measurements for areas OUTSIDE the UHI areas are not included in a complete assessment of an entire land mass, then for all intents an purposes the record is specious in and of itself and is invalid save to demonstrate how to construct an entirely dishonest assessment.

    The quintessence of this matter is one placing a drop of sewage into a bottle of fine wine: The net result is that you’ve a bottle of sewage.

  86. Steve M said:

    Too bad the UAH can’t go back another 30 years … we might see a .21 deg/decade drop.
    *
    *
    But then you’ll have taken the tunnel away from those who need it.

    But of course they may still hire the hockey stick mann …

  87. The point of my earlier comment was that the warming, if any, may be man-made but not by CO2. Chiefio shows biased temperature records due to deliberate selection of thermometers over time, and I show the slight warming from the hadCRUT3 data is due to urban heat island effects. Of the 86 cities in the US with temperature records from hadCRUT3, very few show any warming at all. See Abilene, Texas for example. Some show an overall cooling. Some show a dramatic recent cooling, with the most pronounced being Eureka, California.

    The satellite measurements, the topic of this post, are interesting but of too short duration for anything other than saying “hey, that’s interesting.” With no disrespect to Dr. Spencer, indeed, I applaud much of his work, what Dr. Spencer and others who monitor and report on the satellite data likely are measuring is not the result of increases in CO2, but a mix of factors such as I described in part above: clouds and albedo, etc.

    CO2 is innocent as an agent of warming, as my references to process control demonstrate. This is relevant because most climate scientists (IPCC in particular) strongly advocate controlling the earth’s temperature increase by slowing or eliminating the input of CO2 into the atmosphere caused by man’s activities: primarily fossil fuel combustion but also other so-called greenhouse gases. For any control system to work, the fundamentals of process control must be met. CO2 does not meet those requirements.

    Until climate scientists reconcile process control fundamentals with their assertion that CO2 reduction will decrease earth’s global average temperature, they have no physical foundation upon which to stand. As Dr. Pierre Latour stated, it won’t work. (my paraphrase). Dr. Latour holds Professional Engineer designations in both chemical engineering and process control, a PhD in chemical engineering, and more than 40 years success implementing process control systems world-wide. Engineers world-wide pay close attention when he speaks or writes. Climate scientists would do well to do likewise.

    I have spoken professionally on this topic (the process control aspect of global warming) to hundreds and hundreds of engineers over the past two years, with almost unanimous agreement among my audiences. The few dissenters are employed in government agencies. Under the prevailing conditions in those agencies, they lose their jobs if they agree.

  88. 899 says:
    May 6, 2010 at 9:40 am
    John Finn replied
    Roger Sowell says:
    May 5, 2010 at 11:49 pm
    ….
    Tunnel vision.
    If the only thing you see is what you want to see to the exclusion of all other things, then you are looking through a tunnel.
    What about temperatures since the Little Ice Age? What about prior times?
    If you’re inclined to ignore everything save that point on a graph which exhibits a rising trend, then you’ve tossed the baby with the bath water.

    What about temperatures since the “Little Ice Age”? Have you got some temperature data from the LIA. I’ve got a few datasets that go back to ~1800. There’s also the CET (from 1659), of course, though I’m not sure what it’s got to do with the point about UHI.

  89. Phil. says:
    May 5, 2010 at 9:31 pm [ … ]

    Cheap shot, Phil. On the rare occasions that I’m wrong I admit it. Unlike you, Gates, Anu and Mikael P, who never admit to being wrong, which you all are on occasion.

  90. Roger Sowell says:
    May 6, 2010 at 10:34 am
    The point of my earlier comment was that the warming, if any, may be man-made but not by CO2. Chiefio shows biased temperature records due to deliberate selection of thermometers over time, and I show the slight warming from the hadCRUT3 data is due to urban heat island effects.

    I doubt you have shown any such thing. If you have a link let me have it.

    The satellite measurements, the topic of this post, are interesting but of too short duration for anything other than saying “hey, that’s interesting.” With no disrespect to Dr. Spencer, indeed, I applaud much of his work, what Dr. Spencer and others who monitor and report on the satellite data likely are measuring is not the result of increases in CO2, but a mix of factors such as I described in part above: clouds and albedo, etc.

    The satellite period covers virtually the entire modern warming period. Before that there was cooling. Which “warming” is supposedly due to UHI? You made a statement in an earlier post about the UHI contamination of US temperatures. The fact that the surface and satellite show a similar trend across the US suggests that there is very little contamination in the surface record.

  91. R. Gates: The solar minimum is over

    AGWs as usual being slippery as eels. Before the late 20th century (non-anthropogenic cyclical) warming ended, AGWers were falling over eachother to use abusive language to deride proponents of a role of the sun in climate. Now they are trying to find solace in a sputtering rise in sun-specks most of which would be undetectable over most of the history of the sunspot record.

    Looking at the troposphere and at sunspots is to look in the wrong direction. If you are interested in future climate you should look below the thermocline.

  92. Said John Finn:

    What about temperatures since the “Little Ice Age”? Have you got some temperature data from the LIA. I’ve got a few datasets that go back to ~1800. There’s also the CET (from 1659), of course, though I’m not sure what it’s got to do with the point about UHI.
    *
    *
    The earliest known temperature records are anecdotal in nature, revealing climate/weather conditions of the various periods.

    It would be completely dishonest to dismiss —out of hand— the historical records recounting events of whatever period when a particular climate/weather event was mentioned.

    For instance, the freezing of the Thames river, the advance of glaciers in the Alps which decimated whole villages, the warm spells of a prior period where certain rivers ran so shallow as to afford crossing by foot, the growing of grapes in the north of England, the Norse settlement of Greenland, etc.

    A mere comparison to modern weather effects which would likely result in those instance repeating themselves, is sufficient to accurately estimate what the temperatures were in those periods. You don’t numerical data when the description of an effect more than suffices to replicate such, i.e., a pan of water still boils at a certain temperature and pressure.

    Insofar as the UHI goes, the implication of looking at only a particular span of dates to the exclusion of all others and declaring that there’s a significant change when in fact the change is —in respect to all which preceded— rather insignificant, raises the eyebrows of critical thinkers.

    So, my question is this: Why not completely exclude the temperature data from any location which is thickly settled such as to influence the temperature record, and then evaluate matters from that point, instead of engaging in completely dishonest manipulations such as ‘homogenization’ in order to effect a desired result?

  93. Caleb says:
    May 6, 2010 at 6:35 am
    I comment here fairly often, but never get even 10% the number of replies that Mr. R Gates gets.
    I’m wicked jealous.

    On Joseph d’Aleo’s recent ENSO update I posted sarcastically “looking good for a hottest on record 2010” – meaning the precise opposite. I was mistaken for a troll and got lots of replies. R. Gates says something similar and appears – astonishingly – to be serious.

  94. Said John Finn:

    “The satellite period covers virtually the entire modern warming period. Before that there was cooling. Which “warming” is supposedly due to UHI? You made a statement in an earlier post about the UHI contamination of US temperatures. The fact that the surface and satellite show a similar trend across the US suggests that there is very little contamination in the surface record.”
    *
    *
    Time for some truth:
    [1] Are you saying that UHI effect doesn’t exist, at all?

    [2] If it does exist, then it MUST affect, i.e., bias the temperature record. Are you saying that no such biases are taking place?

    [3] If the satellite data is used ONLY to support the thermal records of UHI areas instead of being used to measure ALL areas, then the record is indeed biased. Do you agree?

  95. John Finn says:
    May 6, 2010 at 12:55 pm – re wanting a link. You got it. Note which cities trends show a slight warming, and which of those cities showed a corresponding population growth.

    http://sowellslawblog.blogspot.com/2010/02/usa-cities-hadcrut3-temperatures.html

    Note also the curious effect that I call the Abilene Effect, where the appearance of global warming occurred not by hotter summers or warmer winters, but by colder winters beginning at the start of your “modern warming period” of the late 1970’s.

    http://sowellslawblog.blogspot.com/2010/01/abilene-tx-not-impacted-by-global.html

  96. I am tired of seeing that mismarked satellite temperature graph again and again where the natural La Nina cooling of 1991/92 is designated as “Pinatubo cooling.” Pinatubo cooling was restricted to the stratosphere at 17 to 22 kilometer height and never reached ground level. The reason it is considered a cooling is due to Self et al. whose article in the big Pinatubo book assigns it a 0.6 degree cooling influence. But he goes even further and asserts that this cooling stopped an El Nino warming which is entirely false. The eruption took place at the moment that an El Nino had just peaked and a La Nina cooling had started. But the Pinatubo aerosols were injected into the stratosphere and actually warmed it at first, and the cooling did not get started until later. El Chichon in 1982 had an aerosol cloud two-thirds of Pinatubo’s and should have had some warming influence according to his theory. But it lucked out in timing – its eruption started when an El Nino warming had just begun and there was no convenient La Nina to hijack for its “cooling” influence. It’s timing was ideal for taking down that uppity El Nino but nothing happened – no one could find a trace of its cooling influence.

  97. 899 says:
    May 6, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    Said John Finn:

    What about temperatures since the “Little Ice Age”? Have you got some temperature data from the LIA. I’ve got a few datasets that go back to ~1800. There’s also the CET (from 1659), of course, though I’m not sure what it’s got to do with the point about UHI.

    *
    *
    The earliest known temperature records are anecdotal in nature, revealing climate/weather conditions of the various periods.

    Ah – anecdotal. Is that where soe one notices it’s particualrly hot, cold, dry or wet and records the fact. Are you sure we get typical conditions from anecdotal records?

    It would be completely dishonest to dismiss —out of hand— the historical records recounting events of whatever period when a particular climate/weather event was mentioned.

    I’m not dismissing anything. However it might be wise to treat such records with caution.

    For instance, the freezing of the Thames river,…..

    The Thames has been frozen on many occasions throughout history – even during the MWP. Thames freezing events are noot unique to the LIA.

    …. the advance of glaciers in the Alps which decimated whole villages, the warm spells of a prior period where certain rivers ran so shallow as to afford crossing by foot, the growing of grapes in the north of England, the Norse settlement of Greenland

    We grow grapes in England now. The Romans did attempt to grow grapes as far north as Hadrian’s wall which while possible would not provide ideal conditions.

    A mere comparison to modern weather effects which would likely result in those instance repeating themselves, is sufficient to accurately estimate what the temperatures were in those periods. You don’t numerical data when the description of an effect more than suffices to replicate such, i.e., a pan of water still boils at a certain temperature and pressure.

    About as reliable as tree-rings.

    Insofar as the UHI goes, the implication of looking at only a particular span of dates to the exclusion of all others and declaring that there’s a significant change when in fact the change is —in respect to all which preceded— rather insignificant, raises the eyebrows of critical thinkers.

    So, my question is this: Why not completely exclude the temperature data from any location which is thickly settled such as to influence the temperature record, and then evaluate matters from that point, instead of engaging in completely dishonest manipulations such as ‘homogenization’ in order to effect a desired result?

    like the oceans, do you mean?

  98. 899 says:
    May 6, 2010 at 1:56 pm
    Time for some truth:
    [1] Are you saying that UHI effect doesn’t exist, at all?

    No – I know it exists.

    [2] If it does exist, then it MUST affect, i.e., bias the temperature record. Are you saying that no such biases are taking place?

    It’s not a question as to whether it biases the record but whether it biases the trend. If there has always been a bias then it makes no difference to the trend. I also think that most of any UH contamination is removed anyway. In some cases I believe they over-compensate for UHI. You also need to remember that the oceans cover ~70% of the globe, so for UH to have a significant effect on the global trend you need virtually all land station locations to have undergone substantial development.

    [3] If the satellite data is used ONLY to support the thermal records of UHI areas instead of being used to measure ALL areas, then the record is indeed biased. Do you agree?

    I don’t know what you’re on about. Satellites provide even spatial coverage across the earths’s surface. UH is not an issue. Satellite temperature readings show warming trends which are similar to the surface trends – particularly during the past 20 years where they are almost identical. This suggests that the surface trends are not hugely affected by UH.

  99. Said John Finn:

    “Ah – anecdotal. Is that where soe one notices it’s particualrly hot, cold, dry or wet and records the fact. Are you sure we get typical conditions from anecdotal records?”
    *
    *
    You condescend well. Does that come with practice?

    Were I to take your tack on matters, then virtually no historical record is worthy of mention, and therefore even the current instrument records are null and void, because after all they are anecdotal in the entirely scientific sense, i.e., that’s just so yesterday! That was then, and this is now …

    Hell, why not toss out every history book too? Who cares what happened, because —according to yourself— the historians of yore were all a pack liars too, and given to exaggeration, right?

    It is one heck of a stretch to declare that the chroniclers of old were engaging in a keen deception so in order to fool future generations whom they would never know.

    That might work all except for one thing: What would they gain by deception?

  100. Hello to all.

    @ R Gates , May 5, 2010 at 9:53pm:

    “Why is it so difficult for AGW skeptics to accept the basic physical greenhouse effects of increasing amounts CO2?”

    I find it difficult to believe the ‘basic physical greenhouse effects’ are anything more than negligible on two counts:

    1. The Theory.

    CO2 exists in the atmosphere at less than 400 ppmbv. To my non-scientific brain, this means that each CO2 molecule is surrounded by approximately 2500 molecules of either O2 or N2, both of which are ‘greenhouse inert’ (I daresay the exact number will be answered by someone). Although CO2 is undoubtedly capable of absorbing and re-radiating certain wavelengths of radiation, the only way the greenhouse-inert molecules can heat up is by conduction from the vibrating CO2 (and other gg) molecules. To my mind, only the molecules immediately next to, or very close to, the greenhouse molecule can warm up. To use an analogy, consider a large stadium such as Melbourne Cricket Ground which contains 100,000 seats. If you painted the inert seats white and the greenhouse seats red, you would have about 40 red seats (this would currently include ALL the greenhouse gasses, not just CO2). I ‘find it difficult’ to imagine that any vibration of someone in a red seat would transfer heat efficiently to anyone sitting more than a few seats away, let alone several hundred seats away. Of course the CO2 molecule re-transmits radiation, but that radiation can only be absorbed by another greenhouse gas molecule. Notice I am ignoring water vapour; but then apparently so do many of the pro-AGW supporters. And, anyway, see point 2…

    2. The Data.

    Since 1850 the level of CO2 has increased by about 40%. At the same time, but not necessarily dependant upon, the global temperature as measured by the accepted datasets has increased by about 0.8 deg C. Even if one assumes ALL of the warming is caused by CO2 and ALL of the CO2 was emitted anthropogenically, then the effect is certainly not catastrophic. It is even less so when one considers that the temperature has not increased in the last 12 years (HadCRUT3 and satellite) whilst the amount of CO2 has increased fairly steadily. To argue that the lack of acceleration is due to natural variation is to concede that natural effects overwhelm anthropogenic effects.

    The main argument against the [C]AGW theory is that the theory implies the ‘warming’ should be both rapid and accelerating. Both of these adjectives are subjective in terms of paleoclimate but, seeing as how the MBH98 Hockey Stick was sold to the public as evidence of them, it is clear to me that both adjectives have not manifested themselves since that ‘hype’.

    Whilst I accept that CO2 is a ‘greenhouse’ gas, the evidence shows that its contribution to the ‘greenhouse’ effect is small and, until the facts (evidence) support the theory, it will (and must) remain open to scepticism. I cannot see how CO2 contributes more than about 6% of the total greenhouse effect. Probably less. Predictions of future AG-warming are meaningless without some evidential basis.

    Sorry my first post on this blog is so long, but I have tried to answer R Gates’ final question, at least from my own perspective. If I have got any part of the science wrong, I hope to be corrected!

    Anthony, thanks for an interesting blog!

  101. Roger Sowell says:
    May 6, 2010 at 2:41 pm
    John Finn says:
    May 6, 2010 at 12:55 pm – re wanting a link. You got it. Note which cities trends show a slight warming, and which of those cities showed a corresponding population growth.

    Ok – I’m not going over each and every station you’ve plotted , so let’s try a different approach.

    I acknowledge Urban Heat (UH) exists but I don’t believe it significantly influences the general trend. You, on the other hand, think it does. Since December 1978, UAH have been analysing temperature data from MSUs on board orbiting satellites. This data is not contaminated by UH. The UAH trend between 1979 and 2008 (30 years) over the 48 states is ~0.25 deg per decade. The surface (station) record trend over the same period is also ~0.25 deg per decade. Now if the surface trend includes a UH trend it means that at least part of the troposphere (satellite) warming is due to a factor which does not affect the surface and, what’s more, that warming just happens to be of the same magnitude as the urban heat warming. I think this is unlikely. I think the most likely explanation is that urban heat has very little effect on the surface trend. Furthermore, because ~70% ofthe earth’s surface is covered by oceans (no UH effect), it has even less effect on the global trend.

  102. In central Utah, this spring has been uncharacteristically cold. Today is May 6th. Last night it dropped to 32 F. and today it snowed. This is unusual, and I ought to know. I’ve lived in the same area for 45 years. Spring has been colder for the last three years. I attribute it to reduced solar activity.

  103. Smokey

    I can do much better than that-there has been warming in CET since 1690. Its hardly rapid and hardly large at around 0.8C. A gentle rise of around .8C since the depths of the LIA, who would have thought it?

    tonyb

  104. in 2009 there was a upwards step function of approx. 0.5 deg Celsius due to this El Nino.

    Is it then reasonable to subtract 0.5 deg Celsius to arrive at an El Nino adjusted anomaly ?

  105. 899 says:
    May 5, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    As a comparison to Mt. Pinatubo, why didn’t the eruption of Mt. St. Helens have any ‘noticeable’ affect on weather?

    St. Helens was smaller, but more importantly the Helens blast was directed sideways, not up. So much less stuff was injected into the stratosphere than happened with Pinotubo.

  106. First week of May in Holland is extremely cold and this looks like continuing for another week.

  107. @ John Finn, May 6, 2010 at 5:01 pm

    I do hope you can find time to examine the charts I referred to above, and contemplate why CO2 failed in its assigned mission to warm so many cities in the lower 48 states. Especially the charts that show dramatic cooling for Eureka, Los Angeles, and San Diego (all in California), Washington D.C., and Marquette (Michigan).

    If CO2 causes warming across the globe, how then can those cities be cooling so dramatically? And, lest your answer be that the California cities all are on the coast and cooled by the Pacific, please consider the chart for San Francisco – it shows a gradual warming, but is also on the coast, and located approximately mid-distance between Eureka and Los Angeles.

  108. RR Kampen says:
    May 7, 2010 at 12:55 am
    First week of May in Holland is extremely cold and this looks like continuing for another week.

    We were lucky to catch one sunny afternoon last Saturday when we visited the Keukenhof tulip park at Lisse (from Belgium) in spite of a forcast for rain all day.

  109. The global-average lower tropospheric temperature continues warm: +0.50 deg. C for April, 2010, although it is 0.15 deg. C cooler than last month. The linear trend since 1979 is now +0.14 deg. C per decade.

    YR MON GLOBE NH SH TROPICS
    2009 1 0.252 0.472 0.031 -0.065
    2009 2 0.247 0.569 -0.074 -0.044
    2009 3 0.191 0.326 0.056 -0.158
    2009 4 0.162 0.310 0.013 0.012
    2009 5 0.140 0.160 0.120 -0.057
    2009 6 0.044 -0.011 0.100 0.112
    2009 7 0.429 0.194 0.665 0.507
    2009 8 0.242 0.229 0.254 0.407
    2009 9 0.504 0.590 0.417 0.592
    2009 10 0.361 0.335 0.387 0.381
    2009 11 0.479 0.458 0.536 0.478
    2009 12 0.283 0.350 0.215 0.500
    2010 1 0.649 0.861 0.437 0.684
    2010 2 0.603 0.725 0.482 0.792
    2010 3 0.653 0.853 0.454 0.726
    2010 4 0.501 0.796 0.207 0.634

    Arctic temps (not shown) continued a 5-month string of much above normal temps (similar to Nov 05 to Mar 06) as the tropics showed signs of retreating from the current El Nino event. Antarctic temperatures were cooler than the long term average. Through the first 120 days of 1998 versus 2010, the average anomaly was +0.655 in 1998, and +0.602 in 2010. These values are within the margin of error in terms of their difference, so the recent global tropospheric warmth associated with the current El Nino has been about the same as that during the peak warmth of the 1997-98 El Nino.

    As a reminder, two months ago we changed to Version 5.3 of our dataset, which accounts for the mismatch between the average seasonal cycle produced by the older MSU and the newer AMSU instruments. This affects the value of the individual monthly departures, but does not affect the year to year variations, and thus the overall trend remains the same as in Version 5.2. ALSO…we have added the NOAA-18 AMSU to the data processing in v5.3, which provides data since June of 2005. The local observation time of NOAA-18 (now close to 2 p.m., ascending node) is similar to that of NASA’s Aqua satellite (about 1:30 p.m.). The temperature anomalies listed above have changed somewhat as a result of adding NOAA-18.

    [NOTE: These satellite measurements are not calibrated to surface thermometer data in any way, but instead use on-board redundant precision platinum resistance thermometers (PRTs) carried on the satellite radiometers. The PRT’s are individually calibrated in a laboratory before being installed in the instruments.]

  110. Roger Sowell says:
    May 7, 2010 at 10:58 am
    @ John Finn, May 6, 2010 at 5:01 pm

    I did post a response to this but I’m not sure what’s happened to it.

Comments are closed.