Antarctic warming courtesy of Mr. Fix-it

Just a little something he threw together

Guest Post by David Middleton

First the breath-taking headlines…

  • Scientists Report Faster Warming in Antarctica, New York Times (WUWT commentary)
  • West Antarctic Ice Sheet warming twice earlier estimate, BBC
  • West Antarctica warming much faster than previously believed, study finds, NBC
  • Western Antarctica is warming three times faster than the rest of the world, Grist

Oh noes out the wazzoo!!!

What could possibly have caused such an out-pouring of Mr. Bill impersonations?

Apparently this did… 

Central West Antarctica among the most rapidly warming regions on Earth

David H. Bromwich,1, 5 Julien P. Nicolas,5, 1 Andrew J. Monaghan,2 Matthew A. Lazzara,3 Linda M. Keller,4 George A. Weidner4 & Aaron B. Wilson1

Nature Geoscience Year published: (2012) doi:10.1038/ngeo1671

Received02 May 2012 Accepted15 November 2012 Published online23 December 2012

Abstract

There is clear evidence that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is contributing to sea-level rise. In contrast, West Antarctic temperature changes in recent decades remain uncertain. West Antarctica has probably warmed since the 1950s, but there is disagreement regarding the magnitude, seasonality and spatial extent of this warming. This is primarily because long-term near-surface temperature observations are restricted to Byrd Station in central West Antarctica, a data set with substantial gaps. Here, we present a complete temperature record for Byrd Station, in which observations have been corrected, and gaps have been filled using global reanalysis data and spatial interpolation. The record reveals a linear increase in annual temperature between 1958 and 2010 by 2.4±1.2 °C, establishing central West Antarctica as one of the fastest-warming regions globally.

[…]

Nature Geoscience

The manufactured “record reveals a linear increase in annual temperature between 1958 and 2010 by 2.4±1.2 °C.” That’s a 50% margin of error on the reconstruction that supposedly corrected the recording errors.

I haven’t purchased access to the paper (nor do I intend to); however, the freely available supplementary information includes a graph of their reconstructed temperature record for Byrd Station. It looks very similar to the NASA-GISS graph that doesn’t show any significant recent warming trend.

Figure 1. Bromwich et al., 2012 compared to the GHCN data.

The NASA-GISS data (GHCN & SCAR) for Byrd Station are in two segments: 1957-1975 and 1980-2012. The 1957-1975 series depicts a moderately significant (R² = 0.19) warming trend of about 1.0 °C per decade. The post-1980 series depicts a statistically insignificant (R² = 0.01) trend of 0.3 °C per decade.

Figure 2. Byrd Station temperature record from NASA-GISS (GCHN & SCAR, not homogenized).

Bromwich et al., 2012 get their 2.4 °C of warming from 1958-2010 (0.4 °C per decade) by stitching together the fragmented data sets. If I just combine the two NASA-GISS series, I get a trend of about 0.4 °C per decade…

Figure 3. Composite of NASA-GISS segments show no warming since 1991.

But, almost all of that warming took place before 1988. And Byrd Station has seen no warming (actually a slight cooling) since 1991.

Furthermore, the corrected temperature record of Bromwich et al., 2012 appears to actually depict more cooling since 1991 than the uncorrected data…

Figure 4. NASA-GISS temperature series overlaid on Bromwich et al., 2012 “corrected” temperature series (black curve). My Mk I eyeball analysis tells me that the corrected data actually show more cooling since 1991 than the uncorrected data.

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Mike Bromley the Canucklehead

Bunkum. First mistake: One data point. Further mistakes: Filling in the gaps with outright fabrications. How this ever passed [strike]peer[/strike] pal review….oh never mind. Undisguised alarmist glitzerature.

Sorry but what did you expect? The truth? The truth does not put food on the table.

Now we can see, There is more science in the wierd-tip ads that in some peer-reviewed articles. The Mayans were right.

Dodgy Geezer

Looks like a good opportunity for someone in the UK to register a formal complaint to the BBC for not researching their stories properly…

Peter Miller

Here’s the retraction and apology from the BBC:
“Our most sincere apologies to all those we may have misled by the article on historical temperatures from the Byrd station in western Antarctica.
Our headlines may have suggested unusual warming in western Antarctica which may have alarmed some readers, when in fact there was little or no warming. It is not the BBC’s task to investigate obvious data manipulation, as occurred here, but to always accept the results of peer reviewed publications at face value.
It is BBC policy to always publish corrections, especially on the sensitive subject of climate change, where we often make mistakes simply because we never read, or understood, the original source material. The BBC is here to inform and not alarm, to educate and not mislead, and as such we have internal directives forbidding the publication and distribution of any and all unfounded news stories designed to alarm the uninformed general public.”
Sarc off/

Sceptic lank

Nature Geoscience -what a joke mag. Does anyone know if there is a list of science publications which have reliable quality control on what they publish? Please advise.

Carlyle

You just can not trust real data. It might give the wrong impression.

AndyG55

“in which observations have been corrected”
are these people related to Hansen ??.. blood brothers, whatever ???
sorry, but how the **** do they know the observations were wrong, and which direction to “correct” (lol) them ???????

james griffin

WUWT sorted this out within 24 hours of the BBC scare story…well done Anthony. All we need is a msm report to back it up. I have contacted two UK daily’s…no sign of the correction just yet but we live in hope. After all the Mail did publish the MET Ofiice graph showing a lack of warmig for the last 15 years.

RB

“The fact that temperatures are rising in the summer means there’s a prospect of WAIS not only being melted from the bottom as we know it is today, but in future it looks probable that it will be melting from the top as well,” he said.
Can someone tell me if this is even physically possible? What is the ambient temperature in the Antarctic, even with “rising” summer temperatures?

Martin A

“Here, we present a complete temperature record for Byrd Station, in which observations have been corrected, and gaps have been filled using global reanalysis data and spatial interpolation.”
“observations have been corrected” = actual measurements have been replaced by made-up values that look better.,
“gaps have been filled using global reanalysis data and spatial interpolation” = we guessed some numbers where measurements were missing.
Science?

The truth does not put food on the table.
Oh, but it does. For the daisies.

Two events in the Antarctic that a climate scientist should consider:
– Solar activity and the Antarctic’s magnetic field move in synchronism but in a counter-phase (solar up – Antarctic down and vice versa)
http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/AntarcticSunEarthLink.htm
– Circumpolar current – by far the world’s strongest ocean current. Its waters and the atmosphere have an 8 year temperature cycle) ACW-Antarctic circumpolar This wave propagates westward against the current but ultimately ends up travelling eastward, due to the massive size of the ACC, at a slower rate than the mean flow. The wave circles the earth every eight to nine years (White and Peterson, 1996). It has a long wavelength (wavenumber=2) resulting in two crests and two troughs at any given time. The crests and troughs are associated with massive patches or pools of warm water and cold water respectively. The areas can be thousands of kilometers long. The warm patches are 2 to 3°C warmer than the mean sea surface temperature (SST) and the cold patches are 2 to 3°C cooler than the mean SST.
http://www.spacedaily.com/images/antarctic-circumpolar-wave-bg.jpg

Peter Whale

It definitely is not science it is conjuring. They should apply to join “The Magic Circle”

Even Tom Curtis at unSkeptical pseudoScience and Wiki-Weasel Connelley at his Stoat blog have been sufficently embarrassed to call foul on this alarmist “Christmas Special” Especially the misleading press release with the falsely captioned figure – and the BBC’s slavish falling for it hook line & sinker.
http://www.skepticalscience.com/West-Antarctica-warming-more-than-expected_NCAR.html#88891
http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2012/12/25/you-cant-blog-on-christmas-day/
Nevertheless – it did the trick with the mainstream media Christmas news scheduled as planned.
Mission accomplished.

Bloke down the pub

They could have published a compendium of incontrovertible proof that cagw was not occurring and as long as the headline said Worse than we thought the media would have gone full on OH Noes.

Jon at WA

Has Joelle Gergis spawned?
This is like a mad re-run of the ‘Boys from Brazil’.
Sorry I could not say anything about the science of this paper. There wasn’t any!

Rob Dekker

Did anyone already plug the Bromwich et al 2012 Byrd data into the O’Donnell et al 2010 Antarctic reconstruction program ?
http://www.climateaudit.info/data/odonnell/
It would be interesting to see if the O’Donnell conclusions still hold after this much more accurate Byrd station temperature record reconstruction.
After all, O’Donnell et al’s own reconstruction at Byrd was highly questionable, since it was based upon temperature trends from stations a 1000 km away across the Ross sea, which arguably have next to nothing to do with the temperature trends at Byrd.

mitigatedsceptic

Peer reviewed?

cRR Kampen

Poor Middleton thinks its Ice Age 🙂

DEEBEE

Looking at the last graph struck me something that companies with corrupt executive suite typically do — namely — if a bad quarter is imminent then might as well dump all accounting shenanigan one had been carrying on the books into that quarter; and take the beating on the stock price and get it out there.
In this paper, it seems since the global temperatures have barely budged in the last 16 years, might as well take whatever little heating we have had and put it in the previous decades and then wait for a paper to come along to “explain” the lack of warming caused by CO2 or some such. Or wait for the warming to start again and note its presence and ignore recent history.

H.R.

Here, we present a complete temperature record for Byrd Station our bank account, in which observations have been corrected, and gaps have been filled using global reanalysis data and spatial interpolation. The record reveals a linear increase in annual temperature our bank account balance between 1958 and 2010 by 2.4±1.2 °C $500,000,000, establishing central West Antarctica our bank account as one of the fastest-warming regions growing globally.
They should try the same thing with their bank account, but I don’t think it would pass the laugh test at their local bank.

Ronald

I pist my pants really I did when I was reading the article. At first it’s a standard AGW propaganda peace but then when you look more closely you see so much stupidity that you can’t belief this is science but ya it still is called that way.
So I went on to find, I did not know what but I was searching the net for more.
I found this. I couldn’t find the link or this is the link but they replaced it whit a les dangers tekst.
http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_22256350/ncar-study-west-antarctic-ice-sheet-warming-twice#ixzz2GFJBq100
Researchers have been unable in the past to make great use of readings from the Byrd Station, established in 1957, because of incomplete observations there because it has not been continuously inhabited.
A year-round automated station was put in place in 1980, but even that has been subject to frequent power outages, particularly during the extended polar night, when its solar panels are unable to recharge.
Interesting peach of studie.
First man him self need to look the thermometer to get the data. He could only do so a small amount of time because of the fact that the post is only inhabited when? Yes indeed the warmer period en that’s only a small period also. So the data range is very small. Take in consideration that the man properly was not that need whit data gendering en you find the dataset very unreliable.
But there is more.
In 1980 they have seen the light and found it better to stage a automated station. Unfortenetlie this one get is power from solar panels en guess what? They don’t work most of the year because of the leg of sun. And when is the sun not shining? Yes in winter.
So its clear that the data is only from the warm period. If you stick the ends to getter you will see automatically en increase of temperature because all the cool bits arnt there.
Then if you consider the fact that there could be some rumbling around AKA fudging the data you gen almost be clear that there is no warming at all but even a firm cooling instate.
Then in the Netherlands came the news that the UK metoffice came whit the prediction that 2013 will be 0,57 degrees warmer then this year.
Link. http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/news/releases/archive/2012/2013-global-forecast
So the alarmist make a joke off them selfs.

Ronald

Sorry mist a peace A year-round automated station was put in place in 1980, but even that has been subject to frequent power outages, particularly during the extended polar night, when its solar panels are unable to recharge.

Man Bearpig

Am I right in surmising that this is the only station showing such warming? If so wasn’t this picked up on by the reviewers? If not is the journal using suitably qualified reviewers?

Keith Guy

Can anyone please enlighten me? Is the NASA GISS data for Byrd station raw data, or has it already been adjusted in some way?

I found the same things and have a copy of the paper. Essentially, this paper represents an attempt to use the 2011 updated AWS data and paste it onto the manual data to find a trend. Although the initial submission of the paper had effort put into AWS data, in its final form O’Donnell 10 was just a correction to S09 math. If the data changes, it will change the result.
I downloaded the recent AWS and Manual data from Byrd, ran an anomaly calc and subtracted from Bromwich 12 results. I got a perfect match at all points where data existed. I have spent no time on the infilling, but I am very skeptical of the infilled series quality.
I received the old AWS data from Nic Lewis and subtracted from the new, and found that the corrections were about 1 C up and then 1C down later. Basically they are very large. The Bromwich paper discusses some of the rationale behind the corrections but does not provide enough information to replicate them.
The whole point is that if the corrections are reasonable, then the non-infilled result is probably reasonable. The infilling of gaps is questionable at best.

Oh, and the thermometer data (not infilled) shows about 2C over 52 years where the paper reports 2.4 with infilled data.

Berényi Péter

RealClimate Bore Hole 1126. “What Bromwich at al. have shown is that Byrd Station is actually cooling in the last 2 decades. Warming, if any, happened in the 1980s. It is inconsistent with other studies showing recent warming at the same location.”
Comment by Berényi Péter — 26 Dec 2012 @ 4:39 PM

It was a comment to The heat is on in West Antarctica by Eric Steig, boreholed properly as all inconvenient but true propositions are supposed to at that site.
BTW, I have painstakingly re-digitized Figure S10 of the Supplementary Information and the trend mentioned above turns out to be -1.74°C/cy.
If this is how one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth looks like, the rest should be cooling even faster, should not it? (I am fed up with bloated headlines in scientific journals that contribute nothing to science but are designed to be picked up by MSM zombies disinclined to check the background.)

richard

so Antarctic scare story- false,
Kilamanjaro ice loss- nothing to do with AGW, currently putting on ice,
Himalayan glaciers- another false story currently putting on ice,
Frogs dying in S America- nothing to do with AGW
All James Hansen prediction from the 1980s- wrong.

RB

@ Dodgy Geezer
I have complained – although I struggled to get it into the 1500 characters allowed by the BBC to complain online.
Here it is:
The 2.4C increase in average annual temperature 1958 to 2010 is subject to a 50% error margin of + or – 1.2 degrees. Mentioning this takes one more sentence.
See the supplementary information for this paper. Almost all of the warming took place before 1988 and there has been no statistically significant warming (in fact cooling) since 1991. See – http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/vaop/ncurrent/extref/ngeo1671-s1.pdf. The BBC reports warming for a period when there is cooling.
The article quotes a co-author – “What we’re seeing is one of the strongest warming signals on earth” – without mentioning uncertainty, without assessing the method of filling in the Byrd station data, (essentially guesswork), giving a statistically insignificant (R2=0.01) trend of 0.03 degrees per decade post 1980.
“The authors say they are confident that the data from Byrd Station is representative of the region …. for a considerable distance.”
Might some perspective be given, say that the WAIS is 8 times larger than the whole of the UK, an area of 765000 sq miles? Is that confidence justified and if so on what basis?
The authors say they are unable to say if any warming is by humans. McGrath quotes these scientists stating that in their “opinion” it is probably human caused and that “some of it IS influenced by human acts”. No comment on how scientific these scientists are being in voicing such an “opinion”?
The paper overall does not say what McGrath reports. This is not about “warmist” or “skeptic”, but an obvious inability to take a science paper, consider it, and give a reasonable and accurate report of its contents and findings with some intelligence applied to them by the correspondent or journalist.
This is not journalism or reporting, but, deliberate or not, advocacy.

Laurie Childs (LC)

@Rob Decker
“After all, O’Donnell et al’s own reconstruction at Byrd was highly questionable, since it was based upon temperature trends from stations a 1000 km away across the Ross sea, which arguably have next to nothing to do with the temperature trends at Byrd.”
What do you think they did in this paper to infill the missing temps? And how do you think NASA-GISS extrapolate temps with their 1200km grids?

richard

Hockey stick graph- gone to AGW heaven,

MattN

The post-1980 series depicts a statistically insignificant (R² = 0.01) trend of 0.3 °C per decade.
I hope you mean .03, because .3 is rather significant….

David L

And yet more linear regressions. The only function this field knows apparently. Y=mx+b. I’m sure the real world works that simply.

Bill

Rob Dekker,
That will be O’Donnell, 2013. It’s even worserer than we thought!

Tom in Florida

mitigatedsceptic says:
December 27, 2012 at 2:11 am
“Peer reviewed?”
More like steer reviewed, you know, a bunch of bull with no balls to it.

Mickey Reno

The derision this “science” deserves is almost more than I can fathom. As Triumph the puppet dog might say, “Another peer-reviewed climate paper… for me to poop on.”

kim

Look, it’s simple. All they’ve got left is catastrophic sea level rise from the Greenland Ice Cap(which sits in a bowl) sliding into the sea, or the WAIS suddenly falling into the sea.
With Catastrophic AGW wisping into willows and plain vanilla AGW being recognized as a good thing, with Climate Change being accepted as normal, with Climate Weirding being disproven statistically, the clandestine coterie of climate have fooled themselves into thinking the people will fall for this. Sure, it is easy to picture, but is it easy to happen?
============================

Mikel Mariñelarena

David,
In their Supplementary Table S1 they report a post-1980 decadal trend of 0.51+/-0.52C. Although not statistically significant, it is in fact a bit larger than their 0.47+/-0.23C decadal trend for the whole period. Do you know where this discrepancy with your results comes from?
Thanks,
Mikel

BLACK PEARL

BBC puts up these articles and rarely allows any reader feed back comments anymore.
They get way with posting misinformation all the time & there is little anyone can do about it.
It would be nice to see a full page retraction or another major media source take them to task but it never happens

Steve Keohane

MattN says: December 27, 2012 at 4:22 am
The post-1980 series depicts a statistically insignificant (R² = 0.01) trend of 0.3 °C per decade.
I hope you mean .03, because .3 is rather significant…

Not with R² = 0.01

Steve Brown

The BBC article is so misleading… I have complained to the BBC about the presentation…
See complaint below:
The article references a paper detailing how a temperature record from a single weather station in West Antarctica was reconstructed and then showed a significantly higher rate of warming than in the rest of the continent. This is not a critique of that paper which has its own flaws. This is a complaint about the map at the top right of the article which has the following caption: “The data from Byrd Station shows rapid warming on the west Antarctic ice sheet” The map is in fact a contour map showing the correlation coefficient between the temperature record at Byrd and the other stations in Antarctica, by definition, the value of the correlation coefficient at the Byrd station will be 1. Every other station in Antarctica has a correlation coefficient of 0.3 or less… this is a rather moderate level of correlation and suggests that rebuilding the temperature record based on the other weather stations will be unreliable. The fact that there is a massive red bulls eye at the Byrd station is a mathematical certainty, the size of the bullseye is a function of the spacing between the weather stations and the mapping software. The big red bulls eye is wholly unrelated to the warming derived from this reconstruction. To use this map and to then label it with the caption is to deliberately mislead, and shows the bias in reporting of issues relating to AGW.

Adam Gallon

And we’ve got a weather station that’s showing a maximum summer temp below -10C!, and that was in the early 1970s.
Now, when I was at school, we were taught that ice melts at 0C.

Darren Potter

A comment in General.
Any, any paper on AGW that is pay-walled should automatically dismissed. We Taxpayers have already PAID for the research and work {cough, cough}, and we should not have to pay again.

Foxgoose (@Foxgoose) says:
December 27, 2012 at 1:41 am
Even Tom Curtis at unSkeptical pseudoScience and Wiki-Weasel Connelley at his Stoat blog have been sufficently embarrassed to call foul on this alarmist “Christmas Special” Especially the misleading press release with the falsely captioned figure – and the BBC’s slavish falling for it hook line & sinker.
……………….
Nevertheless – it did the trick with the mainstream media Christmas news scheduled as planned.
Mission accomplished.

When the warm turns, the bill will come due for these claims they’ve put on their “credit” card–not only the authors, but the journals and the MSM. Who will ever believe them again?