The Temperature claims of 2010

By Dr. David Whitehouse, The Global Warming Policy Foundation

Now that the relevant data for the temperature of the Earth’s surface for the past year are available, it is instructive to examine the claims made by some that it was the hottest year ever, and claims made by others that it was in second place.

One way of looking at the year’s data we have used before is to see how the individual months fare. This is only one way of interpreting the data, there are others, but this way will show if any record temperature is a result of a general yearlong rise or just a few exceptional months.

These five temperature databases I examine give the monthly temperature to thousandths of a degree which is superfluous. When rounded up to a more physically sensible 0.1 deg almost all of the differences between the years of the past decade go away, but that is another story, and not the subject of this post.

2010 was an El Nino year. Before I examine the monthly temperature for the year I thought it would be instructive to see what an El Nino year looks like. In this case the strongest El Nino on record.

1998

Data from Hadcrut3 produced by the Climatic Research Unit.

January; (at the time the warmest on record) cooler than 07, 04, 03, 02.

February; warmest on record.

March; (at the time the warmest on record) cooler than 10, 02.

April; warmest on record.

May; warmest on record.

June; warmest on record.

July; warmest on record.

August; warmest on record.

September; (at the time the warmest on record) cooler than 09, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01.

October; (at the time cooler than 97) cooler than 09, 08, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01, 97.

November; (at the time cooler than 97) cooler than 10, 09, 08, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01, 97.

December; (at the time cooler than 97) cooler than 06, 03, 97.

 

The data shows just how exceptional was 1998 (and 1997). Nine months broke a record, and the other three were close. The warm Spring is typical of El Nino.

The subsequent warm decade has altered things somewhat. We see that even for the hottest year on record, by most global temperature datasets, half of the months of the year were unexceptional in the context of the recent (and warmest) decade. 1998 now has the top 4 of the warmest months on record, and another entry in the top ten. Curiously, in the top ten warmest months, only two are after 2002 (Jan 07 in 6th place and March 10 in 10th.)

For comparison consider a non-El Nino year.

 

2003

January; cooler that 07, 02.

February; cooler than 10, 07, 06, 04, 02, 99, 98.

March; cooler than 10, 08, 07, 05, 04, 02, 01, 98.

April; cooler than 10, 07, 05, 04, 02, 01, 00, 98.

May; cooler than 10, 05, 02, 98.

June; cooler than 10, 09, 05, 02, 98.

July; cooler than 10, 09, 06, 05, 02, 98.

August; 09,98.

September; warmest on record.

October; warmest on record.

November; 10, 09, 08, 05, 04, 01, 97.

December; cooler than 97.

 

The differences are clear.

Moving onto 2010 there are five temperature databases to examine.

 

Dataset: Crut3v

 

January; cooler than 09, 08, 06, 00, 99.

February; cooler than 09, 08, 06, 03, 01, 00.

March; warmest on record.

April; cooler than 07, 05.

May; cooler than 03, 98.

June; warmest on record.

July; cooler than 06, 05, 98.

August; cooler than 09, 01, 98.

September; cooler than 09, 07, 05.

October; cooler than 09, 08, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 98.

November; cooler than 05, 04.

December; cooler than 09, 08, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01, 99, 98, 97, 96, 94, 93, 90, 89, 88, 87, 81, 79, 39,1852.

 

Note: Two record months, though not statistically significant.  El Nino warmth in Spring. La Nina cooling later in the year.

2010 overall; cooler than 2005, 1998.

 

Dataset: Hadcrut3 from CRU

 

January; cooler than 07, 04, 03, 02.

February; cooler than 07, 02, 99, 98.

March; cooler than 02.

April; cooler than 98.

May; cooler than 98.

June; cooler than 98.

July; cooler than 05, 98.

August; cooler than 06, 05, 03, 01, 98.

September; cooler than 09, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 98,97.

October; cooler than 09, 08, 06, 05, 04, 03, 98, 97.

November; cooler than 09, 06, 05, 04, 01, 97.

December; cooler than 09, 08, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01, 99, 98, 97, 92, 87, 79.

 

Note: No single month broke a record. Warm Spring evidence of El Nino.

2010 overall; cooler than 2005, 1998, equivalent to 2003.

 

“Met Office” Hadcrut3

(the Met Office also has a database it calls Hadcrut3 which it calculates a different way from CRU)

 

Jan; cooler that 07, 04, 03, 02, 98.

Feb; cooler than 07, 04, 02, 99, 98.

March; cooler than 02.

April; cooler than 98.

May; cooler than 98.

June; cooler than 98.

July; cooler than 98.

August; cooler than 09, 06, 05, 03, 01, 98.

September; cooler than 09, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01, 98.

October; cooler than 09, 08, 06, 05, 04, 03, 98.

November; cooler than 05, 04, 01.

December; cooler than 09, 08, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01, 99, 98, 97.

 

Note 5 warm months in the Northern Hemisphere Spring – sign of a strong El Nino. No single month broke a record.

2010 overall; cooler than 1998.

 

Dataset: NOAA

 

January; cooler than 07, 03, 02.

February; cooler than 04, 02, 99, 98.

March; warmest on record.

April; warmest on record.

May; warmest on record.

June; cooler than 05.

July; cooler than 05, 98.

August; cooler than 09, 06, 05, 03,02.

September; cooler than 09, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 98.

October; cooler than 09, 08, 06. 05, 04, 03, 02.

November; cooler than 04.

December; cooler than 09, 08, 07, 06, 05, 04, 03, 02, 01, 99, 98, 97, 94, 90, 87, 82, 79.

 

Note: Three record months, though not statistically significant. Evidence of El Nino warmth in Spring.

The NOAA Press Release said 2010 tied with 2005. However, the quoted errors are +/- 0.07 which means that 2010 is statistically equivalent to 09,08,07,06,05,04,03,02,01,98.

Note that in the NOAA dataset 2010 is 2nd warmest land temperature and 3rd warmest ocean temperature.

 

Dataset: NasaGiss

 

January; cooler than 07, 05, 02.

February; cooler than 98.

March; cooler than 02.

April; warmest on record.

May; cooler 98.

June; cooler than 09, 05, 98.

July; cooler than 09, 08, 07, 05, 02, 01, 98.

August; cooler than 09, 01, 98.

September; cooler than 09, 06, 05, 03, 98.

October; cooler than 05, 03.

November; warmest on record.

December; cooler than 09, 08, 06, 05, 04, 03, 01, 99, 97.

 

Note: Evidence of warm El Nino Spring. Record warmest months not statistically significant.

According to NasaGiss 2010 set a record with only two record months.

NASA Press Release said 2010 tied with 2005 which at a temperature anomaly of 0.63 was 0.01 above 2005. The Press Release went on to say that 1998 was in third place with 09,07,06,03 and 02. However, the reality is that 1998 and the other years are statistically equivalent being spread over a range of 0.03 deg C within the errors of 2010 and 2005. NasaGiss is thus statistically equivalent to no change since 1998 (note that in 2005 NasaGiss announced that 2005 was a dead heat with 1998. In 2007 they put 1998 behind 2005.)

Many press reports said that 2010 was a near-record breaking year despite the cooling influence of a La Nina later in the year. What was omitted however was mention of the fact that the reason why the year was marginally warmer than previous years was because of the warming El Nino.

Contrary to press reports the evidence is that 2010 was a year no different from all of the years 2001-2009 with the exception of a moderate to strong El Nino that elevated temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere’s Spring, and a cooling La Nina later in the year. The standstill seen in global temperatures since 2001 continues.

Finally, the temperature anomalies for the past 13 years.

 

Year Met Office Hadcrut CRU Hadcrut CRUTem Giss NOAA
2010 0.50 0.47 0.71 0.63 0.62
2009 0.44 0.44 0.64 0.58 0.56
2008 0.31 0.33 0.53 0.44 0.48
2007 0.40 0.40 0.68 0.58 0.55
2006 0.43 0.43 0.67 0.55 0.56
2005 0.47 0.47 0.75 0.62 0.62
2004 0.43 0.44 0.61 0.48 0.54
2003 0.47 0.47 0.65 0.55 0.58
2002 0.46 0.46 0.66 0.56 0.58
2001 0.40 0.41 0.55 0.47 0.52
2000 0.24 0.28 0.36 0.33 0.39
1999 0.26 0.30 0.49 0.32 0.42
1998 0.52 0.53 0.82 0.56 0.60

 

Note; Met Office Hadcrut, CRU Hadcrut and CRUTem are all with respect to 1961–90. Giss is 1951-80. NOAA 1901-2000.

Met Office Hadcrut

Cru Hadcrut

CruTem

Giss

Noaa

Feedback: david.whitehouse@thegwpf.org

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Michael

How much more can the man-made global warming crowd take before they cry Uncle!? Some people just have to learn the hard way.
Video in link.
“ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry is asking residents to turn their thermostats down to help the state curb its current natural gas shortage.
Berry is asking residents to turn their thermostats down 10 degrees and wear heavier clothing to ease the state’s gas problems.
Around 7 a.m. Thursday, the city of Albuquerque was notified of statewide gas pressure issues, Berry said. The gas company said there was a potential to have 10,000-20,000 homes without gas because of the pressure issues.”
http://www.koat.com/r/26731189/detail.html

redcopper

Meanwhile scientists have proved that feeling warmer makes you more likely to believe in AGW
http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-02-people-global.html

john pries

people will believe what they want to be true, or what they are afraid might be true — from the Sword of Truth, Terry Goodkind

No, 2010 wasn’t even really close to the hottest. But the precipitation bouncing from wet to very dry was difficult for crops.
World food prices reach new record
http://www.france24.com/en/20110203-world-food-prices-reach-new-record

Why is it big news that today’s temperatures are a few hundreths or tenths of a degree warmer than last year or last decade, when the GISP2 ice core temperature data shows the Medieval Period about a 1,000 years ago 1.2C higher than today, the Roman Period 2,100 years ago 2.4C higher than today, and the Minoan Period 3,300 years ago 3.0C higher than today (Alley, JQSR, 19, 213-226). In fact, for about 46% of the time during the last 600,000,000 years, temperatures were at 22C, about 5.5C higher than today (PALEOTEMP). Why are some scientists myopic about hundreths or tenths of a degC for the last few years/decades? The trend for thousands of years is clear – we are getting colder.

sky

No matter how any data set is sliced or diced for any particular year, the argument that the year is the warmest/coolest is meaningful only in the context of temperature variations over supra-centennial scales in an UNADULTERATED time-series. None of the series cited here fits that description, nor does that of the much-too-brief satellite monitoring. Thus we are left with sensationalization of natural variablity as seen through the prism of the data biases and uncertainties. Inasmuch as year-to year variability of individual months is even greater than yearly averages, that problem is only exacerbated by undue attention to monthly records.

Theo Goodwin

There is a plateau. Clearly, it has not been enough to terrify the American people. The English are another matter. Can Hansen keep his finger off the scale? I think that good old rad-liberal over-reach will pop the old temperature right on up to another plateau. Get ready for a record setting year.
Please note that with all of the power of the US government behind him, all Hansen can manage is .1 degree per decade. What amazes me is that anyone takes this foolishness seriously. Of course, maybe he will push it up to .2 or .3 degrees. Why not? Only he and minions have access to the data and, for that reason, there is nothing to lose.

OUCH !!!!
Way to many numbers for me to follow/keep track of !!
This is what I come away with:
“These five temperature databases I examine give the monthly temperature to thousandths of a degree which is superfluous. When rounded up to a more physically sensible 0.1 deg almost all of the differences between the years of the past decade go away, …..”
Not to mention whatever superfluous adjustments are made !!!
Good post !!

Paul Martin

I wonder if this Dr David Whitehouse is the noted astronomer and former BBC science correspondent.

George E. Smith

Well you have to distinguish between “feeling warm” and “being warm” as in a higher temperature range.
So you’ve had a nice hot day (locally) and plenty of sun, and a good bit of humifity, and around sundown clouds start to condense at higher altitudes; and you have a nice balmy night.
So you do your morning calisthenics, and then set off to work. The sun has just risen over the horizon, and already you feel overly warm. But what does the Thermometer say; is it really warm, or do you just feel warm.
When the humidity is up, you are going to feel warm regardless of whether the temperature is high or not. You body is trying to get rid of excess heat after your big breakfast and quick workout; but because of the humidity, your evaporative cooling system just doesn’t work.
The subjective feeling of warmth, is no indication of increased temperatures. It is almost a certainty that the early morning Temperature is well down from what it was the night before at sundown, yet you still think it is hot.

VICTOR

good post

Meanwhile… another two feet of snow.

Rex

This is issue is the perfect example of the way language is used to influence
people’s thinking … hot! hotter!! hottest!! … as if we are all about to burst into
flames. Sadly, the sceptical lobby concedes ground to the Warmists, by debating
whether 2010 was the ‘hottest’ year, which acquiesces to the linguistic chicanery.
Translate all these various findings to absolute temperatures: nothing ‘hot’
at all about them !!

rob m

How would yearly temp data compare if one used data from Oct 1 to Sept 30?

John Whitman

Dr. David Whitehouse,
Thank you for your calm reasonable presentation of the past 13 years of Earth surface temperatures ending in 2010 for the major data sets.
From the data my understanding is that 2010 was not the warmest.
John

Tom Harley

I have no idea (except for political ideologies and scientific grants) why we should be worried about warming temperatures anyway. As any farmer and fisherman can tell you, warmer weather and higher CO2 has given us far more benefits over the last 12 years with regards to improved yields and quality of primary produce.
Our quality of life is also much better when it is warmer, which is why there are so many ‘grey nomads’ traveling the north in OZ during winter, and people moving to Queensland. Even Florida and Spain where Northern Hemisphere nomads retire, seem much too cold the last couple of winters.
I live in the tropics, and the warmer weather (resulting from warmer East Indian Ocean temps) has been a huge benefit, with many more ‘good’ wet seasons than the past, despite little change in long term temperature averages.

DD More

Hope you like the current temperatures. All the warmists want us to live with the heat from the late 70’s, which according to UAH we are at now.

Schadow

There is an old saying that if you have a clock, you can tell what time it is. If you have two clocks, you’re not really sure of the time. With five or six clocks (or thermometers) you are even less sure of the time (or temperature.)
So, the holders of multiple measurement devices tend to drift off and allow their biases to govern their opinion of actual values.
Dr. Whitehouse has come closest I’ve seen to coming up with probable actuals.

Tim

Here’s a quick hypothetical question;
Why shouldn’t the AGW proponents simply say whatever they wish? What are the actual negative consequences for doing so, when they’ll still have legions of followers hanging on every word?
This post is about science, and math, and the attempt to pin down some facts as best we can. But the AGW debate doesn’t particularly seem to revolve around science, math, or facts.
I think the backlash in 2-3 years will be of epic proportions.

BarryW

The whole notion of “warmest year” strikes me as irrelevant. Somebody didn’t suddenly turn up the furnace (sun) so if the insolation didn’t change the temperature increase that was seen in the atmosphere and the sea surface came from the oceanic heat sink. At the end of the year if the temperature was lower then the heat went “somewhere” and there are only two places it could go: radiated away or reabsorbed into the oceanic heat sink. Hence the real question is what was the total heat content of the atmosphere/aquasphere at the beginning of the year and what was it at the end. If it was equal to or less than the heat at the beginning then the temps in between are irrelevant. All that would have been measured by temperature is “noise” with heat being transferred from one sink in the system to another or radiated away.

It is irrelevant to claim the transitional months (spring and fall) are “warmer” or “cooler” than “normal”. If the winter is warmer, with a normal summer, spring MUST also be warmer because it has less temperature difference to go. (it’s not physically possible for there to be a cooler than normal spring after a warmer than normal winter). The only months in the Northern Hemesphere that count for any trend is Summer Tmax-Tmin, and Winter Tmax-Tmin.

It's always Marcia, Marcia

to thousandths of a degree which is superfluous. When rounded up to a more physically sensible 0.1 deg
If you round everything up from top to bottom in the process you can make several years ‘hottest ever’. Or, if you start with few rounding ups and incrementally add more rounding ups year by year you can, conceivably, create continual warming. If you are an environmental activist with access to the data it is possible you would do this.

RoyFOMR

Temperature is, as Temperature does. 
Forest Gump Misquote.
When 100 year events recur annually, when unprecedented morphs into “not for ages” isn’t it time to call halt to modern science?
When, if and maybe, perhaps and likely are elevated to the ranks of data isn’t it time we just started blaming witches again?
I’d say no but only if we redefine Science as to what it once was. Data, observation and hypothesis. Not digital curve fitting, not simplistic single variable extrapolations, not even self-flagellating fantasies that transport us to exotic locations on other peoples money.
Just cold and ascetic logic.
If UHI was but a trifling third decimal point adjustment then why bother gathering the firewood?
If trees are proven to behave badly post-1960 then why should we seek to trust them before then?
If we want Science to survive then it’s time for genuine Scientists to point the finger of guilt to those who have sailed under a false flag!

Mike

This is what “skeptics” look like when they are desperate. The world is warming. The past decade was the hotted on record. 2010 was, on average, tied with 2005 as the warmest year on record. DW’s bizarre data twisting is irrelevant, although he may well be able to start a new career as a contortionist.

Gerald Machnee

Has anyone compiled how many stations were used in each of the years in question (since 1880 or so I think NASA said), How many in 2010 are the same as a hundred years ago, and how may of the stations in each year are “infills”, in other words, estimates?

latitude

Charles S. Opalek, PE says:
February 3, 2011 at 4:50 pm
Why is it big news that today’s temperatures are a few hundreths or tenths of a degree warmer than last year or last decade
================================================
Charles, odds are that today’s temperatures are colder….
Facts are:
Old glass thermometers can account for all of the recorded warming – glass shrinks
UHI is adjusted up, not down
Stations have been dropped
Past historical temps have been adjusted down
Recent temperatures have been adjusted up
With all that adjusting, and still admitting temps have flat lined, actually decreased, in over a decade…
….odds are that temps have actually gone down

FrankK

These sorts of “global” temperature 10th of a degree comparisons are a bit irrelevant when the Central England temperature record (the longest available) from 1659 shows that 2010 was the 2nd COLDEST in the record and the same as it was in 1659 when there was no man-made CO2 levels to speak of.

FrankK

Oh I forgot 1659 was during the “little Ice Age”

peter fimmel

The leaders of the warm conjecture depend for their leadership status on their claims remaining at the centre of the orthodox doctrine. When and if they or their supporters accept the facts of global temperatures their status, research grants and jobs at the top of academe will be undermined and liable to vanish.
Just imagine how it would feel to face ignominy and loss on that scale. Its that rather than the statistical significance of 0.1˚C, or belief in dodgy tree-rings that stands in the way of a facts-based view of climate.

Sunspot cycle undercutting the Dalton Minimum but no word from the news media or government at all about it. Why? Because if it gets out, they lose money and the global warming debacle is done. If the sun doesn’t come to life soon we could very well be heading into another little ice age over the next 50 or so years.

Werner Brozek

“rob m says:
February 3, 2011 at 5:58 pm
How would yearly temp data compare if one used data from Oct 1 to Sept 30?”
I have not calculated that, but it would be easy enough to do by taking the 12 values and dividing by 12. Then it depends on which data set you use. There are just too many Hadcrut3 for my liking. Could they not give different data sets different names so there is no constant confusion as to which one is meant? But as for your question, the following shows 1998 to have a value of 0.548.
http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/temperature/hadcrut3gl.txt
This compares to a much lower value of 0.475 for 2010. However the value from September 1, 1997 to August 31, 1998 is 0.577. So if anyone wants to claim that a different 12 month period other than January 1 to December 31 is warmest, then two can play this game.

Christopher Hanley

By judicious juggling of data, Hansen is able to present a constantly rising temperature series compatible with the monotonic rising CO2 as opposed to the discontinuous UAH and even HADCRUT3 (post-2000) series:
http://woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1980/mean:13/offset:-0.1/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1980/mean:13/plot/uah/from:1980/mean:13
It will be interesting to watch how he deals with the current La niña.

Mike says: “The past decade was the [hottest] on record. 2010 was, on average, tied with 2005 as the warmest year on record.
This is an artefact of the short record. Had the record been longer by, say, 4,000 years, then we would be saying that 2005 and 2010 are nowhere near the warmest, which were over 3,000 years ago.
It appears that the natural temperature cycles have already started to head downwards again, and that no amount of CO2 can override them. If we cannot find alternative ways of warming the planet, then we had better prepare for cooler times.

dp

It would be more useful to know what the energy budget was over those 13 years. Did the planet gain or lose net energy?

PeterT

“2010 was an El Nino year.”
Really????

bubbagyro

Here is a little chuckle just in from the “Windmill State”, Texas:
MEXICO CITY — Mexico said Thursday it was temporarily suspending an offer to provide electricity to Texas to help the U.S. state weather an ice storm that forced rolling blackouts, because of severe cold in Mexico’s own territory.
Mexico’s Federal Electricity Commission had said Wednesday it had agreed to transmit 280 megawatts of electricity to Texas.
But on Thursday, the commission said it was temporarily suspending the transfer because below-freezing temperatures in northern Mexico had affected the generating capacity of some its own plants, causing a reduction of about 1,000 megawatts in generation.

We are in for some serious irony in the years ahead. The “Team” will get to the end of their temperature “adjustment” rope any time soon.

Beth Cooper

Even temperatures in the great El Nino year of 1998 are not outside the normal range so Null Hypothesis applies, “that in the absence of evidence of change it has to be assumed that there has been no change.”

Foley Hund

We will see what comes of crops around the globe. Maybe a better measure of climate than the constant minipulation of data crunching statistical bias.

kadaka (KD Knoebel)

Opinions requested:
Back over at the recent BBC article, the esteemed Prof. Phil Jones’ “statistically-significant” line is being thrashed out. Again. The non-statistically-significant period was 1995 to 2009.
“barry” says the warming trend for 1995 to 2010 is statistically-significant, and provides a link to a blog post providing “proof” here. I will not dignify that post with the reposting of the URL here for reasons I’ll give below.
I can follow that post enough to see the careful selection of a significance test, fitting of models to tweak out statistical significance from the models, and also that the author must think more decimal places makes the results more impressive thus the whole concept of “significant digits” may be freely ignored. It’s the sort of “numerological fog” that a more statistically well-versed person like E.M. Smith or Willis Eschenbach could blow away in under five minutes, which is where the “opinions requested” comes in, if whomever is willing to check doesn’t mind giving that site a hit.
It’s one I hadn’t been aware of, “Brave New Climate,” like if something had really changed from our Bored Old Climate. “Consider the source” is in full effect. The “blogroll” features pro-(C)AGW sites known for simple misdirection to deceit and “mis-truths” to just-avoiding-being-legally-actionable libel and slander. But no WUWT, Climate Depot, Climate Audit, etc. You know the routine: the science is settled, there’s an overwhelming scientific consensus, so why mention the opposition, if there was any scientifically-credible opposition that could be mentioned, or opposition not funded by Big Oil and Big Pollution.
Clicking the mundane-looking “Sceptics” link up top reveals (highlighting added):

In this series, I aim to teach you to recognise the recycled denialism that is rife in the public arena these days. (…)
——
Related posts addressing recycled denialist talking points

Thus I will not dignify that post with a traceable reposting of the address, and consign that site to my list of Places Not Worth Visiting as they are not interested in a balanced presentation let alone the real (scientific, statistical, or otherwise) truth.

Oliver Ramsay

George E. Smith said
“…When the humidity is up, you are going to feel warm regardless of whether the temperature is high or not. You body is trying to get rid of excess heat after your big breakfast and quick workout; but because of the humidity, your evaporative cooling system just doesn’t work.
The subjective feeling of warmth, is no indication of increased temperatures. It is almost a certainty that the early morning Temperature is well down from what it was the night before at sundown, yet you still think it is hot.”
———————————–
Without disagreeing with the general thrust of your comment, I would take issue with your observation that high humidity will make you feel warmer in all circumstances.
Perspiration is obviously a cooling mechanism, but it doesn’t occur until it’s necessary.
It may be that living in California has spoiled you (you do, don’t you?) but since we only have Global Warming and not, regrettaby, Canadian Warming, many of us have to rely on vigourous activity to induce sweating.
Below the perspiration threshold ( a lamentably protracted period in these climes) all we need to do to avoid overheating is step outside, remove one layer of down-filled clothing or dilate the blood vessels close to the surface of our skin. The efficacy of this last measure is greatly enhanced with the ingestion of ethanol.
It’s my contention that we humans are not immediately sensitive to atmospheric humidity, although, with prolonged exposure to very dry air, mucous membrane of lips and nose may feel effects.
We don’t have nerve endings that can differentiate one atmospheric gas from another, and even liquid water at the same temperature as our skin is only detected as mild pressure.
It’s common to hear people declare, as they step into a toasty, wood-heated house from outside conditions of 5C and 90% humidity, how humid it is inside, because their glasses fog up.

Right on Foley, and I think we’re heading towards something resembling this. Hopefully not perturbed as long.
Bipolar correlation of volcanism with millennial climate change
http://m.pnas.org/content/101/17/6341.full

Robb876

[snip]

Jockdownsouth

Paul Martin Feb 3rd 5:12pm-
“I wonder if this Dr David Whitehouse is the noted astronomer and former BBC science correspondent.”
Yes he is. From the GWPF Academic Advisory Council webpage –
Dr David Whitehouse
David Whitehouse, who has a doctorate in astrophysics, was successively BBC Science Correspondent and Science Editor BBC News Online. He is the author of a number of books on solar system astronomy and the history of astronomy.

The idea that there is a valid concept to the notion that there is a valid gobal temperature must be challenged. And the idea that we know what it is to hundredths of a degree is sheer hubris.
As for the notiion that we have a worthwhile sea surface temperature component for any of these data sets…These are historically derived from people throwing buckets from a ship and then eventually getting round to shoving a thermometer in the water that was subsequently sitting round on the shiops deck…
Much of the raw data being used by the modellers does not bear scrutiny.
tonyb

tarpon

The public doesn’t understand data sets, but quickly figures out how many times the driveway fills with snow.
Our blue-bird winters in SWFL have turned to overcast fog, near everyday … the Gulf is below normal.

Yes this is the Dr David Whitehouse, science PhD, who used to be the BBC science correspondent in the days when it mattered that science correspondents knew something about science.
Nowadays the BBC no longer regards this as important – Roger Harrabin’s degree was in English and David Shukman’s was in Geography. But they both believe in global warming, and that’s what matters.

stephen richards

PeterT says:
February 3, 2011 at 8:56 pm
“2010 was an El Nino year.”
Really????
ABSOLUTELY. Don’t forget the system lag.

davidmhoffer

The warmest year on record thing gets two reactions out of me.
1. Well, its been warming up for several centuries now, its SUPPOSED to be the warmest. Unless of course the warming has ceased and we’re at a peak which would be signified by a decade or so of flat temps followed by… an ice age! panic! panic! Its the 1970’s again!
2. Its the warmest by how much? Let’s scale that down to something humans can relate to. Let’s say it is late spring and the warmest day got to a high of 20 degrees. Then the next day it was even warmer, 20.1 degrees. And the day after that, even WARMER, 20.13 degrees. OH MY GOSH! And then the next day… 20.134 degrees, catastrophe! Warmest day so far by 00.004 degrees! Can’t you people see what’s happening here? Are you stupid? Don’t you know what all those decimal places MEAN? We might be at FOUR decimal places in just one more day! Yes! We could hit 20.1344 degrees within the next 24 hours! Do we have to get to FIVE decimal places before you oil company bought propogandists with all your error bars and statistics and demands for actual measurements and actual science finaly get the message? Have you not seen what is happening to the decimal places? They are increasing by one a day! We’re all gonna die! The death rate could very well hit 1.000000 per person! Why can you morons not see what is happening here? Decimal places ARE science you blithering idiots!
sarc/off
OK, I feel much better now.

Snotrocket

@Tim, who says: February 3, 2011 at 6:47 pm
“Here’s a quick hypothetical question;
Why shouldn’t the AGW proponents simply say whatever they wish? What are the actual negative consequences for doing so, when they’ll still have legions of followers hanging on every word?
“This post is about science, and math, and the attempt to pin down some facts as best we can. But the AGW debate doesn’t particularly seem to revolve around science, math, or facts.”

Tim, the negative consequences for allowing the CAGW proponents to continue their programmes unchallenged will soon be felt in yours and everybody else’s pockets. You (should) know that the UK Government is committed to spending the equivalent of TWO Olympic Games PER YEAR for the next 30 years or so purely on the say-so of these proponents.
So you see, doing nothing is not an option. And that’s not a hypothetical position.

Harold Pierce Jr

“Finally, the temperature anomalies for the past 13 years”
should be like this after rounding:
Year–Met Office Hadcrut– CRUHadcrut– CRUTem–Giss– NOAA.
2010–0.5–0.5–0.7–0.6–0.6.
2009–0.4–0.4–0.6–0.6–0.6.
2008–0.3–0.3–0.5–0.4–0.5.
2007–0.4–0.4–0.7–0.6–0.6.
2006–0.4–0.4–0.7–0.6–0.6.
2005–0.4–0.5–0.8–0.6–0.6.
2004–0.4–0.4–0.6–0.5–0.5.
2003–0.5–0.5–0.6–0.6–0.6.
2002–0.5–0.5–0.7–0.6–0.6.
2001–0.4–0.4–0.5–0.5–0.5.
2000–0.2–0.3–0.4–0.3–0.4.
1999–0.3–0.3–0.5–0.3–0.4.
1998–0.5–0.5–0.8–0.6–0.6.
Do these numbers say there has been no global warming since 1998?
Note some unusual higher values (e.g., 0.7 and 0.8) under CRUTem.