Heatwave In Philadelphia

By Steve Goddard

New high temperature records have been set for Philadelphia:

RECORD EVENT REPORT

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MOUNT HOLLY NJ

805 AM EDT THU JUL 8 2010

...RECORD TEMPERATURES AT PHILADELPHIA PA WEDNESDAY JULY 7 2010...

A RECORD HIGH TEMPERATURE OF 103 DEGREES WAS SET AT PHILADELPHIA PA

ON WEDNESDAY JULY 7TH. THAT BROKE THE OLD RECORD OF 98 SET IN 1994.

THE WARMEST TEMPERATURES EVER AT PHILADELPHIA WERE 106 ON AUGUST 7

1918.  IT WAS 104 ON JULY 3 1966 AND JULY 10 1936 FOLLOWED BY THE

103 HERE YESTERDAY WHICH ALSO OCCURRED IN SEVERAL OTHER YEARS.

ADDITIONALLY THE LOW OF 80 YESTERDAY WAS ALSO A RECORD WARM MINIMUM

TEMPERATURE FOR THE DATE...SURPASSING THE PREVIOUS RECORD OF 79 IN

1999.

THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE OF 91.5 YESTERDAY WAS 4TH WARMEST IN

PHILADELPHIA WEATHER HISTORY DATING BACK TO 1872. THE WARMEST

AVERAGE TEMPERATURE WAS 94 DEGREES ON AUGUST 7 1918.

THE TWO CONSECUTIVE DAYS OF 100 DEGREE HEAT WAS THE 4TH WARMEST TWO

DAY PERIOD FOR PHILADELPHIA.

Charles Peirce kept detailed temperature records for Philadelphia from 1790 to 1847

This is what he wrote about July, 1830:

The medium or average temperature of this month was 80; and it was an intensely hot month. At mid-day the mercury rose to 90 and above, on twelve days.

So far this July, Philadelphia has had five days over 90, and the average temperature has been 80.

July, 2010 has been very hot in Philadelphia so far. Just as hot as it was 180 years ago – during the Little Ice Age when CO2 levels were 280 ppm.

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45 thoughts on “Heatwave In Philadelphia

  1. but those temperatures haven’t been homogenised – that’ll fix it. all temps must be lowered by .7c to account for the introduction of Stevenson screens and the use of lead based paint instead of whitewash. </sarcasm

  2. I saw this picture on a job advertisement, they actually pay these people 12-13 bucks an hour… fascinating.
    I couldn’t help but notice that they should probably have picked a better time of year to photograph this appeal to get people to come help them fight global warming.
    The two girls wearing anti global warming propaganda on their shirts, are wearing so much cold weather clothing that you can’t see their “Stop Global Warming” T shirts.

    Even the Whale looks cold!
    Reply: I fixed the link for you. ~ ctm

  3. And records are made to be broken…it’s inevitable that if we watch long enough and carefully enough, every temperature record for every day for every place in the world will eventually be topped. Does not a trend make however. Remember, weather, not climate…

  4. thanks charles. I was hoping to put the picture up here for peolple to get a kick out of it but I can’t figure out how to put a pic up on someone else’s blog… God bless WordPress

  5. Oh, this is just dandy, compare 31 days in 1830 with 7 days in 2010.
    As usual jumping the gun as it were.
    Fortunately, we have 15-day weather forcasts, still doesn’t get us past the 22nd, which means we’ll just have to extrapolate from the known and forecast highs.
    We know that so far the month of July is batting 6/8 or 62.5%, and if the 15-day weather forcast bears itself out, 12 of 14 days will hit 90 or above, so that gives us a potential batting average of, (5+12)/(8+14) = 17/22 = 77.3%, and if that average holds for the remaining nine days, 0.773 * 9 = 7 more days of 90 or greater temperatures.
    So it looks like Philly might have a total of, drum roll please, 5 (known) + 12 (forecast) + 7 (extrapolated) = 24 days in July 2010 with 90 or higher temps.
    Or twice the number of days in 1830.
    See ya, don’t want to be ya.

  6. The simple fact that temperatures aren’t significantly higher during a “record-breaking” 2010 heat wave with 385 ppm atmospheric CO2 concentration than a hot 1830 summer during the friggin’ Little Ice Age, pretty much makes a mockery of the Catastrophic Anthopogenic Global Warming Hypothesis.
    The apocalypse has been postponed, as usual.

  7. EFS_Junior says:
    July 8, 2010 at 11:34 pm
    Oh, this is just dandy, compare 31 days in 1830 with 7 days in 2010. As usual jumping the gun as it were.
    Easy Junior, your post almost looked like a Climate Model (how many assumptions could you load in there?)! I think Anthony clearly stated “July, 2010 has been very hot in Philadelphia so far.”
    “so far” would be the key… Anthony and WUWT (et. al.) have enough integrity to re-post on the issue if something truly anomolous happens. In the meantime (aka: “so far”) it’s not too remarkable.
    But what do I know?

  8. As Steve points out we have very good records for many places around the world which puts modern temperatures into better context.
    Philadelphia and other Historic diaries and temperature records from around the world can be found on my site here by clicking on the relevant city. A variety of articles are lower down the front page
    http://climatereason.com/LittleIceAgeThermometers/
    Tonyb

  9. One can go back further: how about 217 years?
    1793. The medium temperature of this month was 81, and there was a great deal of excessively hot and dry weather. All the rain that fell was during some violent thunder gusts. The mercury was from 90 to 96 in the shade on ten days, and from 84 to 89 on fifteen days.
    And then there were other hot Julys in Philadelphia at the end of the Little Ice Age:
    1822. The medium temperature of this month was 80, and it was the hottest month since July 1798…Eleven days, during the month, the mercury rose to 90 and above. Four days it rose to 97.
    1838. The medium temperature of this month was 81, and it was the warmest month in this vicinity, that we have on our record for several years. On eighteen days, (during midday) the mercury rose to 90 and above ; on two of these days it rose to 96 in the shade, but being placed for thirty minutes in the full rays of the sun, at mid-day, it rose to 143.
    The average for July in Philadelphia was 80 or above in 1793, 1798, 1822, 1825, 1828, 1830, 1838.
    One wonders what all those temperatures of 96 and 97 degrees would have reached with today’s UHI effect.

  10. ScientistForTruth
    Thanks for the further research. I see that the mean for this July has dropped to 79F. NCEP is forecasting cooler weather the rest of the month, so 2010 probably won’t even end up in the top ten.

  11. L said: “And records are made to be broken…it’s inevitable that if we watch long enough and carefully enough, every temperature record for every day for every place in the world will eventually be topped. Does not a trend make however. Remember, weather, not climate.”
    I wish everyone would remember that….

  12. In addition to the ever increasing local UHI there’s another little problem with these NOAA news releases that’s not adequately reflected – people were better acclimatized way back in the last century. I lived through the Philly heat wave of ‘66, without air conditioning. So did most of the poor, underfed, overworked, underpaid people alive on this planet in those days long ago. But, and this may be significant, as I recall we had more trees in Philly then they have today. I think we had more grass, the kind you walk on, too. Folks today can’t relate to what life was like way back then, it’s all gone, gone with the wind. And the trees! And the grass! (the kind ya’ walk on)

  13. Not only are (legitimate) records made to be broken, but in temperature, they will be broken. In a 100 year temperature record, you should expect between 3 and 4 new high and new low temp records to be set each year, as a matter of statistics.
    To very briefly explain, in the first year, every high and low is a record, because there is no previous recording of temperature. In the second year, about half of all recording will be records; in the third, about a third. Follow that progression out to 100-120 years (the length of many temperature records in the US), and you will see that each year, on average, between 3 and 4 new records will be set, if there are no other changes in average temperature ranges.
    Nothing unusual here, just weather.

  14. Why does the National Weather Service report list 103 as the new record high temperature, when in the very next parapgraph it is contradicted by an old record of 106?

  15. If you examine the Climate Screamist cyclic pronouncements, one can reach the conclusion that mankind has a collective memory length of about 40 years. If it wasn’t for written records, they would scare us to death.

  16. The wind is at 2 MPH which can’t begin making a wind turbine rotate.
    Extra heat and no wind. The maroons say wind electric is a good thing.

  17. I notice the “competing” record temps are from the pre-AC years, which means the current high doesn’t tell us much about real trends.
    Do we have long-term records for nearby rural towns? Lancaster? Oxford?

  18. This is a truly excellent cherry pick.
    First, anyone can follow your own link and see that you chose the a year in the record of 56 with an abnormally high number of days at or above ninety (only 1838 was worse, but temps didn’t hit 90 once in 1837). Move on to 1832 and the number is 2. Move on to 1833 and it didn’t happen at all. The average temperatures for most years were in the 70s, many in the low 70s. In 1816 the average was 68. Cherry pick!!!
    Second, we’re only 8 days into July, but your post leaves the reader with the impression that the two comparisons (8 days in July, all 90+, versus 31 days in 1830 with 12 at 90+) are reasonable. Apples and oranges!!!
    Lastly, obviously this is weather. You’re simply distracting the unwary from the importance of climate and trends. Climate versus weather!!!
    REPLY: Uh, sorry to bust your sphaerical enclosure, read the tags for this blog post; “weather, records”. I notice that you didn’t complain about Michael Mann citing the heat wave as evidence of climate change in his recent video interview. Truly an excellent cherry pick on your part. -A

  19. L (July 8, 2010 at 11:23 pm) and Daniel raise an interesting point when they agree:
    And records are made to be broken…it’s inevitable that if we watch long enough and carefully enough, every temperature record for every day for every place in the world will eventually be topped. Does not a trend make however. Remember, weather, not climate…
    While I agree that this kind of statement is useful as an antidote to CAGW and moreorless captures the historical record, strictly speaking it should be preceded by a statement like … so long as there is no physical or anthropogenic assisted process leading to a long term decline in temperature then … This makes temperature readings the equivalent of rolling a dice or tossing a coin with all the accompanying assumptions that guarantee that the statement has to be true.
    Of course, the issue is the existence or non-existence of these natural and anthropogenic processes and their net effects.

  20. Bill S says:
    July 9, 2010 at 5:22 am

    Why does the National Weather Service report list 103 as the new record high temperature, when in the very next parapgraph it is contradicted by an old record of 106?

    103 is the record high for that day of the month (the 7th of July).
    106 is the high for the entire month (the highest temperature reached during any day of the month of July).

  21. Just a week ago I was reserching the record lows in New Hampshire, due to the news about snow on Mount Washington.
    New records were set July 6 (99) and July 7 (97) in Concord, but for Alarmists Nashua is the site to study. It set new records on four straight days, July 5-8, (99, 101, 100, 98.)
    Oddly, though 101 is regestered as the high for July 6, the “record high” for July 6 is listed as “98 in 2010.” Adjustments, anyone?
    Nashua, New Hampshire is a great site to study, to see the UHI effect. It went from being a small and even quaint mill city (large town) with farms pressing up to its edges, into what has become basically a vast mall serving people who dislike Massachusetts taxes, in only a quarter century. I’m not sure where the temperatures are taken, but you get odd statistics you don’t see elsewhere in New England, such as seven straight days of record highs, August 11-17, 2002. (August 19, 2002 was also a record.
    Despite the fact UHI enhances new records, there are plenty of signs of very hot summers in the past, especially in the late 1940’s. A heat wave in 1948 set record highs of 97, 105, 101, and 99 from August 26 through 29 in Nashua.
    The hottest ever recorded in Nashua was 106 in on July 4, 1911.

  22. You guys sure do make for a good laugh. The simple fact that a hot weather record was broken sends most of you into a nervous tail spin –with loud cries of “this could not be true”. The record was broken –Fact. The weather service made no link to AGW. Why challenge and be sceptical about every little piece of temp data and record that has been broken. It sounds like outright DENIAL (not healthy scepticism to me). Pick your battles and which data needs challenging–or people will stop listening to you. But perhaps that would be a good thing. Keep up the good work!!
    MJK

  23. The e comes before the i. It’s Charles Peirce, not Charles Pierce. (But not Charles Sanders Peirce, incidentally.) (Also incidentally, if Charles Peirce (the temperature-recorder) was related to the Boston-area Peirces, then his name probably was pronounced like “purse.”)
    REPLY: right you are, fixed, thanks -A

  24. mjk
    If you have a 99 year temperature record with 1000 stations, you should break 3,652 high temperature records and 3,652 low temperature records during the 100th year.
    After ignoring the very cold snowy winter, you folks are crowing about five hot days in July.

  25. mjk:
    Who is denying what? UHI is UHI, Asphalt is Asphalt, instrument changes are instrument changes. You are also correct, a record is also a record. But there is a larger context. For example, Michael Mann made explicit reference to this heat wave as supporting his view of AGW … which provides context for some of the commentary here and elsewhere. Does your comment apply to him as well?

  26. If a weather station has 100 years of homogeneous observations, that is, no change to the station’s location, instrumentation, or surroundings, a daily maximum or minimum record temperature could be expected to be broken on average about seven days during that year. Natural variation will cause this number to vary each year but should average about seven days over several years. Or for a given day, it would take 12,367 years for 10 new records to occur. During the first 10 years of record keeping approximately three new records will have occurred. However as the station’s observations increase over time, it will become harder for new records to be established. This of course assumes that climate variation occurs as a normal probability distribution:
    1 – (1 – 2/N) to the nth power
    The n is the number of weather elements under consideration and N is the number of years of available weather data. More records will be established quicker if more weather elements are being considered.
    ref: Ralph Boas, Weatherwise (April 1980), pg. 60-64

  27. Jan:
    Of course the big question is how accurate is the assumption that “that climate variation occurs as a normal probability distribution:
    1 – (1 – 2/N) to the nth power
    The n is the number of weather elements under consideration and N is the number of years of available weather data. More records will be established quicker if more weather elements are being considered.”
    The normality assumption assumes no trends, no cycles, no nothing. As a shorthand it is ok, but it is a shorthand that disguises our underlying ignorance of weather and climate processes.
    Matt Briggs at http://www.wmbriggs.com (link is on the blogroll on this site) has many interesting things to say about the limitations of traditional statistics – for example, http://wmbriggs.com/blog/?p=2512

  28. Jan Curtis
    Those statistics you quoted are misleading.
    It is not significant which day the record occurs on or in which city. If Kalispell, Montana breaks a record (high or low)on August 17, Romm will report as being due to global warming. The interesting statistic is the total number of expected high temperature records set during a year for the entire data set.
    In a 100 year record with 1000 stations, we expect to see 3,652 high temperature records set per year. The math is simple. On any given day at any given station, the odds are 100/1 of breaking a record.
    365.25/100 * 1000 = 3652.5

  29. Why is the weather service denying the data recorded by Charles Pierce? Are they skeptical of his measurements?

  30. A very cold winter was ‘weather’ not climate – or so we were earnestly told… but 7 hot days? That’s “Climate Change” ! We’re all dooomed 🙂

  31. Ref – mjk says:
    July 9, 2010 at 8:01 am
    “You guys sure do make for a good laugh. The simple fact that a hot weather record was broken sends most of you into a nervous tail spin –with loud cries of “this could not be true”…”
    ______________________________
    You’re probably right, or perhaps I should say ‘correct’, the sarcasm does get a little think around here and it’s no doubt probably very difficult for some who delve beneith the bottom line to detect just how thick it is on any given article on any random day. Stick around, you’ll get the hang of it; we’re not always as dense (aka ‘sarscastic’) as we sound – sometimes.

  32. stevengoddard says:
    July 9, 2010 at 10:53 am
    Jan Curtis
    Those statistics you quoted are misleading.
    It is not significant which day the record occurs on or in which city. If Kalispell, Montana breaks a record (high or low)on August 17, Romm will report as being due to global warming. The interesting statistic is the total number of expected high temperature records set during a year for the entire data set.
    In a 100 year record with 1000 stations, we expect to see 3,652 high temperature records set per year. The math is simple. On any given day at any given station, the odds are 100/1 of breaking a record.
    365.25/100 * 1000 = 3652.5

    Steven,
    I’m having a bit of heartburn over that statement of “we expect to see 3,652 high temperature records set per year.”
    That begins to sound an awful lot like the climate propagandists way of saying that no matter what, the temperature is going to rise and we’re all doomed!
    The equation you employ comes off as ‘math in a vacuum,’ i.e., a purely theoretical construct which bears no relation to the real world.
    What happens when the records aren’t being set, and conversely are greater in number than the proposition put forth by the equations?
    Thank you for your time on this.

  33. Philip Foster
    The AGW crowd is thrilled. They no longer have to rely on the three week long 2003 European heat wave to prove that the global climate is heating out of control.
    They now also have a mini heat wave in a few eastern states to add to their spectacularly lame arsenal.

  34. 899
    If you had a random number generator which you had run 99 times, the 100th run would have one chance out of a hundred of being the largest number in the group.
    So in an environment of no warming, you would expect to see 3652 high temperature records over 1000 stations. In a warming environment, you would expect to see more. In a cooling environment, you would expect to see less.

  35. Ah! The famous heat wave that killed 36,000 people in France! Sadly this was for the most part due to the French habit of going ‘sur vacances’ during August and leaving the elderly behind in the flat – whoops – apartment/house – a bit like leaving the cat with food left out for it. Unable to get out easily or summon help many perished like pets left in a hot car.
    Of course nearly five times as many elderly perish during the winter from cold. But let’s not mention that.

  36. What is shown for actual high and low temperature July 9th 2010 in Philadelphia shows 75 and 75 degrees F. It me appears to me that this missed the actual high, due to having at that time only temperatures recorded early in the morning. The temperature in Philadelphia that day did make it at least to about 85, probably the upper 80’s. The actual average temperature for 7/9/2010 was probably 80-81.5, definitely much warmer than 75.

  37. More news from So Cal in the ‘weather isn’t climate’ department courtesy of the NWS.
    RECORD EVENT REPORT
    NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LOS ANGELES/OXNARD CA
    330 AM PDT FRI JUL 9 2010
    …MANY RECORD LOW MAXIMUM TEMPERATURES SET AGAIN YESTERDAY…
    YESTERDAY WAS ANOTHER IN A STRING OF VERY COOL EARLY JULY DAYS
    IN SOUTHWESTERN CALIFORNIA. MANY NEW DAILY RECORD LOW MAXIMUM
    TEMPERATURE RECORDS WERE SET OR TIED YESTERDAY.
    A RECORD LOW MAXIMUM TEMPERATURE IS SET WHEN THE HIGHEST
    TEMPERATURE ON A CERTAIN DATE IS COOLER THAN ON THAT DATE
    IN ANY PREVIOUS YEAR.
    THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF THE RECORDS SET OR TIED FOR
    JULY 7TH…ALONG WITH THE OLD RECORD AND THE YEAR IN
    WHICH IT OCCURRED.
    STATION NEW OLD
    RECORD (2010) RECORD YEAR
    LOS ANGELES DOWNTOWN/USC 70 71 1916
    LOS ANGELES AIRPORT 65 67 1987
    BURBANK AIRPORT 72 76 1944
    SAN GABRIEL 72 80 1944
    UCLA 66 69 1960
    SANTA MONICA PIER 63 (TIED) 63 1965
    SANTA MARIA 66 (TIED) 66 1956
    SAN LUIS OBISPO CAL POLY 67 69 1974
    I live near the San Gabriel station where the record was broken by 8 degrees.
    It’s a drag having to wear a sweat shirt around the house during the summer!
    But, if your in Phili, don’t even think of moving here. Earthquake on Tuesday, riots on Thursday, and Eco-wackos all year round.

  38. Abc australia just like BBC, manipulated garbage for news. The guy mentioned who heads the PM show had a father who was an Mi5 agent, if I recall correctly, and my gut tells me that he is an knowing operative for the elite. The Abc has more and more morphed into an Orwellian mechanism of disinformation. Also our weather is being mucked around with. US deputy secretary of defence Cohen in a doorstop interview of 1999 said that we are now at war with the weather, I think those details are correct and also that its reported that various secret weather manipulation bills have been passed.Then there is the something like 10,000 HAARP stations around the world as well as chemtrail spraying that effects the weather. Those two things, chemtrail spraying and HAARP may very well, at least in part, work together, as there is strong evidence that one aspect of chemtrail spraying is working on the electrical properties of the atmosphere/biosphere? Also we have the suggestion that extreme weather events are being stage managed, hurricane Katrina, I think was involved in some unheard of manouvering and also showed what is possibly another signature of manipulation, the hexagram? shape evidenced from satelite pictures around the eye, I think Richard Hoagland is interested in this? All the time here, in Australia, we are bombarded with global warming propaganda: due to the intentional drying up of our rivers and dams as well as this programmed mind control people are being deluded.

  39. In the mean time on the west coast, we’re having cool days and cold nights. Overcast at the morning hours.
    All this is just about heat from the tropical Gulf of Mexico headed to the pole to be vented and the ‘hot blob’ rising up the East coast while the ‘cold blob’ is falling down the West coast.
    And that’s the problem with looking at temperatures, it doesn’t capture heat flow.
    The heat flow is net leaving the planet. So it gets how somewhere on it’s way past. So what. It’s the snows in South Africa, New Zealand, etc. that are telling the tale of cold (and the chilled coffee in Brazil). For latent heat in the ocean, it will take a few years to dump it. And it will go north via the East coast. No real surprise there.

  40. I live in the mnts in Central PA and while it’s been pretty brutal the last week, it certainly isn’t anything that doesn’t happen at least once every year or two. Philly is known for hot, muggy summers, it pretty much sucks. No one mentioned however that the highs right before this heatwave were in the low, mid 70s for a week. That was probably just weather though.

  41. Bill S made a comment on July 7, 2010. Regarding the mention of a high temperature and the contradiction in the next paragraph.
    It is funny how stupid people make themselves look.
    If he bothered to read what he was commenting on, he would see that the first record was for a specific day. The higher mention of a record was for a all time yearly record. They were two different records with different criteria for each one which is why one was higher. Pay attention bill, to what you are reading before being critical of someone else. LOL.

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