Record temperatures are absolute – no adjusments needed. One of the biggest complaints about climate science has to do with adjustments of temperature data, such as we’ve recently witnessed from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and have been long discussing here at WUWT about what NOAA does to US and global temperature data via techniques such as homogenization which basically swamp pristine station data with questionable data from stations compromised by UHI and micro-site biases.
But, record temperatures are absolute, and there is no possible way that any adjustments can be made to such records. Otherwise, they become meaningless. So, rather than rely on adjusted temperature data, a good independent indicator of warming or cooling is the number of temperature records that have been set. While NOAA/NCDC doesn’t make it easy to track such things, I have spent a considerable amount of time manually downloading and saving the high/low records from each month of 2014 and compiling the data in a spreadsheet.
The results so far through August of 2014 indicate that on balance, 2014 has been a cool year for the USA as this graph shows:
Summer of 2014 has also been cool, with record lows outpacing record highs at nearly 2-1 (3405/1782):
In more detail, examining each month of 2014 so far, we find large differences between record highs and record lows almost every month except for two, May and August, which were comparatively balanced:
The biggest gainer this year has been the category of “Record Low Tmax”, seen at the far right, with 19,593 records set this year. What that means is that generally, temperatures have not been reaching the normally expected daytime highs, and so the Tmax is the lowest it has ever been for that day.
All of these graphs and the data I’ve compiled is available in this Excel Spreadsheet: 2014_US_records_NCDC (.xlsx)
I’ll repeat this report for every month in 2014 and have an end of the year summary in January 2015.
Worldwide, NCDC reports record daily highs and record daily lows are tied:
I don’t expect that tie to last for long, as there are lots of straggler stations yet to been collated by NCDC, we’ll review this again near the end of the month and you’ll see what I mean. Those numbers will change.
Right now year to date global cooling indicators (23780+18071 = 41851) slightly outpace warming indicators (21593+18071=39664). We’ll see if that holds.
All data is available here from NOAA/NCDC: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/cdo-web/datatools/records