About the Claims That Northeast U.S. Blizzards Have Been Amplified by Human-Induced Global Warming

Guest Post by Bob Tisdale

The media has been abuzz with claims that the January 2015 New England Blizzard was worsened by human-induced global warming. One of the outspoken activist members of the climate science community who has been quoted often on the storm is NCAR’s Kevin Trenberth. An example of Trenberth’s interviews can be found in the ClimateNexus post Blizzard of 2015: Normal Winter Weather, Amplified by Climate Change. The subtitle is actually quite funny, bringing back the old “consistent with climate models” nonsense: “Above average sea surface temperatures increase snowfall, consistent with model projections.”

Kevin Trenberth is reported to have claimed the following about the January 2015 New England blizzard:

The number 1 cause of this is that it is winter. In winter it is cold over the continent. But it is warm over the oceans and the contrast between the cold continent and the warm Gulf Stream and surrounding waters is increasing. At present sea surface temperatures are more than 2F above normal over huge expanses (1000 miles) off the east coast and water vapor in the atmosphere is about 10% higher as a result. About half of this can be attributed to climate change.

Interesting. Trenberth noted that only “about half” of the warming of the surface of the North Atlantic off of the east coast of the United States and only “about half” of the additional water vapor in the atmosphere there “can be attributed to climate change”. One has to assume Trenberth is referring to the human-induced type of climate change with that statement and that the other half was caused naturally—in response to the coupled ocean-atmosphere process of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation.

I don’t think anyone will disagree with Trenberth’s opening sentence, which associates New England blizzards with winter. But let’s look at the number of ways the rest of Kevin Trenberth’s statement is incorrect. And we’ll also show the obvious flaws in the ClimateNexus author’s declaration “consistent with model projections”.

NOTE: For more information on the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, refer to the NOAA Frequently Asked Questions About the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) webpage and my blog posts:

That NOAA FAQ webpage confirms that the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation can contribute to global warming and suppress it. [End note.]


Dr. Roy Spencer addressed the water vapor portion of Trenberth’s statement in his post Northeast Snowstorms & Atlantic Water Vapor: No Connection in Last 27 Years. Roy Spencer found no correlation between the boreal winter (DJF) snowstorm index for Northeast United States and satellite-based water vapor data for the Northwest Atlantic (30N-50N, 80W-50W) since 1988. The data also indicate that, while water vapor in December has increased in 27 years based on the linear trend, it decreased in January and in February, so, overall, there has been a decrease in boreal winter (DJF) water vapor over the Northwest Atlantic.

Dr. Spencer was very clear that water vapor annually in that region has increased in that time, but during the boreal winter months since 1988, atmospheric water vapor has decreased. Kevin Trenberth’s speculations about water vapor must refer to annual, not winter data associated with blizzards.


Figure 1 illustrates the boreal winter (DJF) sea surface temperatures of the western extratropical North Atlantic, based on NOAA’s ERSST.v3b data. I’ve used the same coordinates as Dr. Spencer (30N-50N, 80W-50W). If you’re wondering about the size and location of that region, I’ve highlighted those coordinates on the map here, which was linked to the ClimateNexus post. (You’ll note on that map that the region with warmer-than-normal water actually stretches farther east than the 1000 miles noted by Trenberth, before we run into cooler-than-normal water. As a reference, at 40N, the longitudes of 80W-50W reach almost 1600 miles.) The first data point in Figure 1 is for the 3-month season of December 1880 through February 1881 and the last data point is for December 2013 through February 2014. As shown, the sea surfaces for the western extratropical North Atlantic were warmer for boreal winters (DJF) in the 1930s and 1950s than they have been in recent years. That, of course, is a response to the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation.

Figure 1

Figure 1

NOTE: There may be an uptick in 2014/15, but we’ll have to wait until early March to see how this winter compares. Adding one year of data, though, is not going to impact the following trend comparison to any great extent. [End note.]

So, working back in time in 5-year increments, I determined the longest time period where the boreal winter data for the western extratropical North Atlantic showed no surface warming, based on the linear trend. Turns out it was 95 years…since the boreal winter of 1919/20. See Figure 2.

Figure 2

Figure 2

I’ve also illustrated in Figure 2 the average of the sea surface temperatures for that region as simulated by the dozens of climate models included in the CMIP5 archive. Those are the models the IPCC used for their 5th Assessment Report. We present the model mean because it best represents the groupthink (the consensus) about how the sea surfaces of that region should have warmed if manmade greenhouse gases and other contributors (that drive the models) caused the warming. In other words, the average (the multi-model ensemble member mean) represents how the sea surfaces in that region should have warmed if they were warmed by manmade greenhouse gases. (Basically, the model mean represents the forced component, not the “noise”, of the models. See the post On the Use of the Multi-Model Mean for more information.) According to the climate models used by the IPCC, the boreal winter sea surfaces of the western extratropical North Atlantic should have warmed almost 0.6 deg C in those 95 years, but the data show no long-term warming in that time based on the linear trend. Note also that the modeled sea surfaces are too warm over the entire period, on average by more than 1.0 deg C.

The models are in no way “consistent with” reality.


True-blue believers in the hypothesis of human-induced global warming say we need to look at 30-year trends, so let’s do that. See Figure 3. It shows the 30-year trends (in deg C/decade) for the boreal winter sea surface temperatures of the western extratropical North Atlantic. The first data point at 1910 illustrates the slight negative trend (cooling rate) of the boreal winter (DJF) sea surface temperatures for the 30-year period of 1880/81 to 1909/10, and the last data point in 2014 shows the boreal winter warming rate for the 30-year period of 1984/85 to 2013/14. Between the first and last data points, the sea surfaces of the western extratropical North Atlantic show a wide range of multidecadal variations in 30-year trends. Note how the (boreal winter) warming rate of the 30-year period ending in 1938/39 was more than 1.5 times faster than the warming rate of the most recent 30-year period ending in 2013/14.

Figure 3

Figure 3

But the vast majority of the warming during the 30-year period ending in 1938/39 was not forced by manmade greenhouse gases. We can show this by adding the modeled trends in sea surface temperatures for the western extratropical North Atlantic to the graph. See Figure 4. The observed warming rate of 0.37 deg C/decade for the 30-year period ending in 1938/39 was more than 5-times faster than the modeled rate of 0.07 deg C/decade. Obviously, the naturally occurring multidecadal variations in the warming and cooling rates of the surface of the western extratropical North Atlantic are not a response to the forcings used by the climate models. And that suggests that it is very likely that most of the warming there in recent decades was also a response to natural variability.

Figure 4

Figure 4

Once again, the models show they are in no way “consistent with” reality.


Many of you noticed the likely flaw in Trenberth’s early claim:

In winter it is cold over the continent. But it is warm over the oceans and the contrast between the cold continent and the warm Gulf Stream and surrounding waters is increasing.

Everyone knows that annual, decadal and multidecadal variations in land surface air temperatures are, in part, simply exaggerations of the variations in local sea surface temperatures. If the sea surfaces for the western extratropical North Atlantic warmed in recent decades, and they have, then the air over land should have warmed a little more. So Trenberth’s statement seems to contradict the instrument temperature record. But maybe he was correct for the boreal winter. Let’s look.

The big-3 global surface temperature data suppliers (GISS, NCDC and UKMO) only provide their data in anomaly form, but NOAA’s sea surface temperature data (used by GISS and NCDC) are available in absolute form. So for the land air temperatures in absolute form, we have to refer to a reanalysis to get an idea of the temperature difference between land and ocean during the boreal winter. The reanalysis is called GHCN-CAMS. It has to be kept in mind that a reanalysis is the output of a computer model that uses data as inputs, so, in other words, it’s not data. The authors of the paper that supports the GHCN-CAMS reanalysis also caution against using it for evaluating climate models. That’s fine. We’re not using it for that purpose. We’re simply using the GHCN-CAMS reanalysis outputs to get an idea of the magnitude of the temperature difference between the sea surfaces of western extratropical North Atlantic and the land surface air temperatures for the eastern U.S. and Canada, using the coordinates of 30N-50N, 80W-50W for ocean and land surface temperatures. See the top cell of Figure 5.

Figure 5

Figure 5

The GHCN-CAMS reanalysis starts in 1948, and since that time, there has been about a 20 deg C difference between boreal winter (DJF) land and sea surface temperatures (ocean minus land) for those coordinates. We know, however, that the sea surfaces of the western extratropical Atlantic were warmer in the 1950s than at present times, so the start date of the GHCN-CAMS reanalysis skews the trend results. Thus, the bottom cell shows the temperature difference between the sea and land surfaces (ocean minus land) for the coordinates of 30N-50N, 80W-50W, starting in 1975, which has been determined through breakpoint analysis to be the start year for the recent global warming period. The temperature difference between land and oceans in that part of the world is decreasing, not increasing as claimed by Kevin Trenberth.

Some readers may not feel confident with the GHCN-CAMS reanalysis. That trend difference does look a little steep. In Figure 6, for the same regions, we’re using the sea surface temperature anomalies and land surface air temperature anomalies based on the GISS Land-Ocean Temperature Index (LOTI). It includes the same ERSST.v3b sea surface temperature data used in this post, but they’re in anomaly form in the GISS LOTI. The differences (ocean minus land) also show land surface temperatures rising much faster than ocean surface temperatures in those regions since 1975, but not as fast as the with the GHCN-CAMS reanalysis.

Figure 6

Figure 6

And even climate models contradict Trenberth’s claim. They too show a decrease in the temperature difference for those ocean and land regions since 1975. See Figure 7.

Figure 7

Figure 7

Looks like the climate models got that relationship right since 1975. Too bad they can’t simulate sea surface temperatures over any time frame. Now recall that the oceans cover about 70% of this planet. For more insight into how poorly climate models simulate sea surface temperatures, see the posts:


Apparently, alarmist climate-change advocates are still willing to furnish misinformation to the public about the contribution of human-induced global warming to weather events. Somehow, I don’t think many readers will find that surprising. It’s been the norm for many years.


The data, reanalysis and climate model outputs are available through the KNMI Climate Explorer.

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February 2, 2015 2:35 am

I see Kevin Trenberth still pretends to be a Nobel Prize winner!

David Harrington
Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
February 2, 2015 3:18 am

Where, I did not see that anywhere?

Reply to  David Harrington
February 2, 2015 3:26 am

From his CV
“Nobel Laureate (shared) for Nobel Peace Prize 2007 (as part of IPCC) Oct 2007”

Stephen Richards
Reply to  David Harrington
February 2, 2015 4:48 am

Missed it, huh. The problem is that you have to want to find the real information and not the data you want to find.
Trenberth is an activist and therefore prone to misinforming the public.

Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
February 2, 2015 3:50 am

When you lie has a normal pratice its sometimes hard to tell the deference between the truth and lies, especially when lies are so much more profitable .

george e. smith
Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
February 2, 2015 10:53 am

Well a 2 deg F increase in ocean Temperature and a +10% in atmospheric water, is about in line with The Wentz et al finding that a 1 deg. C increase causes a 7% increase in atmospheric water vapor.
Of course that leads to an increase in clouds. Isn’t it logical to believe that to get a whole lot of rain or snow, you need a whole lot of clouds ?
And isn’t a whole lot of clouds, going to intercept and scatter / absorb increased amounts of incoming solar radiation; which therefore will never reach the oceans as solar spectrum radiation that penetrates to the depths ?
So it is just le Chatalier’s principle at work. Any change in a system at equilibrium will cause a change in such a direction as to nullify the effect of the original change. It’s a sort of ersatz negative feedback; and LC’s principle says it is “always” negative feedback; never positive which would enhance the perturbation.
That is why earth’s climate is so stable. Nothing much ever changes (by much).

Reply to  george e. smith
February 2, 2015 11:32 am

This is such a straightforward explanation that it would be instantly deleted on many alarmist blogs [or be attacked viciously by their clueless lemmings].
All first- and second-order feedbacks are negative. That’s why Prof. Richard Lindzen wrote that measured at the equator, global T has varied by less than 1ºC over the past billion years. Negative feedbacks like clouds keep temperatures steady.

Bob Weber
Reply to  george e. smith
February 2, 2015 12:41 pm

Brilliant. The SST history bears that out. From what I’ve been looking at, I would add only this: changes in solar flux are the dominant driver of upward SST trends, and downtrends in solar flux are followed by downtrends in SSTs, except for El Ninos, which I think are a special case.

Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
February 2, 2015 12:32 pm

You spoiled the work of the microsecond troll. Shame on you.
Anyway, has Trenberth prophesied his amplified blizzard to happen before or after his food riots?

Justa Joe
Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
February 2, 2015 6:32 pm

He’s also apparently a Dennis Weaver wannabe.

Bloke down the pub
February 2, 2015 2:54 am

It would be nice to think that some of the outfits that have published Kevin’s claim will now publish this post to show the other side of the argument, but what world am I living in?

Stephen Richards
Reply to  Bloke down the pub
February 2, 2015 4:49 am

Not the real one, that’s for sure :)))

February 2, 2015 2:55 am

Fix the formatting. Too hard to read.

Reply to  rokshox
February 2, 2015 9:30 am

rokshox. Could it possibly be your browser which is causing the problems? I’m not experiencing any format problems with this piece, using Firefox 35.0.1.

February 2, 2015 3:29 am

You are correct. I don’t think anyone is surprised by Trenberth’s antics. He pulled the same stunt at a press conference back in October of 2004 where he “furnished misinformation” to the public regarding the link between hurricanes and global warming, when he was warned by hurricane expert Chris Landsea prior to the event that there was very little, to no link.
It’s always good to review history lest we forget. Here are some of Landsea’s remarks of the incident from Climategate emails:
Prior to the news conference:
“However, i am concerned that this news conference may stray from science into the realm of hyperbole. Please don’t let that happen.”
After the news conference:
”I did try to caution both Dr. Trenberth and Dr. Linda Mearns before the media event (email included below) and provided a summary of the consensus within the hurricane research community. Dr. Mearns decided not to participate in the panel perhaps as a result of my email correspondence. I sincerely wish Dr. Tenberth had made the same decision. Dr. Trenberth wrote back to me that he hoped that this press conference would not “go out of control”. I would suggest that it was out of control the minute that he and his fellow panel members decided to forego the peer review scientific process and abuse science in pursuit of a political agenda. Sincerely, Chris Landsea”
So he continues to “abuse science in pursuit of a political agenda”. Shock!
Thanks, Bob, for your excellent report.

old construction worker
Reply to  SkepticGoneWild
February 2, 2015 3:51 am

‘So he continues to “abuse science in pursuit of a political agenda”. Shock!’
So he continues to “abuse science in pursuit of a paycheck”. Shock!

Reply to  old construction worker
February 2, 2015 8:58 am

My bad!

February 2, 2015 3:42 am

Re (after Fig.7): “Too bad they can’t simulate sea surface temperatures over any time frame.”
—-REPLY: even less the lower ocean levels. While the sea surface is about 16°C, ocean mean temperature is about 4°C (70°F). All modeling is mere guessing.
Re: “Now recall that the oceans cover about 70% of this planet.”
—-REPLY : and hold 1000 times more water as the atmosphere.
When Kevin Trenberth said (NATURE 2007 – http://blogs.nature.com/climatefeedback/2007/09/some_climate_change_fallacies.html );
“Climate models are not perfect, but they are useful tools for quantifying the effects of various climate processes and drivers of climate change.”
—–It shows that he does not understands global natural common; at least less than Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) who knew that: “Water is the driver of nature”
Just a few US NE-January2015 blizzard images indicate from where the snow came: http://climate-ocean.com/2015/L.html ; title: “Satellite images and Juno-January-2015 Blizzard demonstrate ocean supremacy”.

Don Perry
Reply to  ArndB
February 2, 2015 5:52 am

Since when is 4 degrees C = 70 degrees F ?????

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  Don Perry
February 2, 2015 7:27 am

39.2° F

Reply to  Don Perry
February 2, 2015 8:18 am

Indeed! 16,1°C is 60,9°F! Ocean average is about 12°C lower than SST. Right?

February 2, 2015 3:48 am

Trenberth well that name made the BS meters jump right of the scale , now I wonder why that is ?
Still given that any and all weather conditions can and have been claimed has related to ‘global warming ‘ , has long gone are the days of saying weather is not climate , its hardly a surprise to see the recent snow added to this long , long list of events that ‘most be in some way down to AGW’

Reply to  knr
February 2, 2015 7:15 am

Sea surface temperatures must have hit boiling point in the past.

23 December, 1959
Schenectady Gazette
Zero Temperatures, Record Snow Usher Winter Into Northeast
29 December, 1969
Lawrence Journal-World
Northeast Staggered By Record Snow; More Forecast .

Let’s not forget….snowfalls are now just a thing of the past. One good Dr. tells us that children won’t know what snow is, and now another Dr. tells us children will get too much snow. Which is it?

David A
Reply to  Jimbo
February 4, 2015 11:47 pm

“Let’s not forget….snowfalls are now just a thing of the past. One good Dr. tells us that children won’t know what snow is, and now another Dr. tells us children will get too much snow. Which is it?”
Well Jimbo, now what is wrong with both, if you are the magic molecule? And in those rare years where the snow amount is average, it will be of course extremely average.

February 2, 2015 3:56 am

Dr. Trenberth, like his fellow Warmist scientists, will do or say almost anything to keep the global warming scare alive and the research funds flowing. If he were to tell the truth — that human-induced runaway global warming does not exist — he’d be ostracized, perhaps fired, booted from the IPCC hiearchy, and disinvited from future speaking engagements, missing out on lucrative honorariums.
For most of the warmist scientists, it’s simply too risky to tell the truth. There are reputations to preserve, cocktail parties to attend, and publicity coverage to be had. Why ruin a good thing? They’ll defend their junk science until the bitter end.

Joel O’Bryan
Reply to  kirkmyers
February 2, 2015 5:10 am

Trenberth and his fellow AGW believers are working on new bamboo headsets and discussing their runway layouts in anticipation of the airplanes landing.

Reply to  kirkmyers
February 2, 2015 12:48 pm

They more than likely have made so much by now they can go and live on a tropical island without communication devices.

Walt D.
February 2, 2015 3:56 am

It is always global warming this and global warming that. However, it seems that this global warming is very selective – it warms some places but does not warm other places. Also, the amount of warming is orders of magnitude higher than the theoretical 1.4C per century. The short term fluctuation over a few years or even year to year is larger than the theoretical 1.4C per century. It is said in the US that all politics is local. It would appear since global warming has been politicized that all global warming is local as well.

February 2, 2015 4:01 am

I have some minor internal natl growth on my right big toe.
I am certain it is due to man made global warming.
It would not be as painful if it was due to natural global warming.

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  toorightmate
February 2, 2015 7:38 am

The only solution to your problem is to amputate at just above your left knee. If that doesn’t get rid of the pain, then do the same to the right leg.

Reply to  John F. Hultquist
February 2, 2015 2:22 pm

Thank you.
I have just done the left leg. I’ll see how that goes.

Walt D.
February 2, 2015 4:12 am

I’m surprised that nobody has considered “the Bermuda Triangle” as an explanation – a vast area of the Atlantic Ocean where the laws of physics and even time do do apply. This could be a catch all for the Global Warming Establishment. OK it is not mainstream science, but is not any more preposterous than the other 60 explanations trying to explain the pause. Plus many people actually believe that the Bermuda Triangle is a real phenomenon.

Reply to  Walt D.
February 2, 2015 11:47 am


Reply to  jorgekafkazar
February 2, 2015 12:54 pm

And many people actually believe Global Warming.

February 2, 2015 4:19 am

No wonder people are sick and tired of this. How about some positive benefits from ManBearPig?

February 2, 2015 4:26 am

So, Trenberth’s missing heat, apparently in the deap ocean, bypassing the shallow ocean, is causing more snow? I am sad to say this guy in a New Zealander, and apparently not too bright compared to Ernest Rutherford (Of Scottish heritage).

Stephen Richards
Reply to  Patrick
February 2, 2015 4:51 am

The remarkable thing is that when it is convenient this hidden heat reappears at the surface to cause extra snow. Amazing, intelligent heat.

M Courtney
February 2, 2015 4:28 am

The problem with Kevin Trenberth isn’t that he misleads the public in press conferences. There’s always a rent-a-clown who’s willing to do that. It’s a travesty but it’s true.
In my controversial opinion the problem is that, if he has no interest in the truth (as he obviously doesn’t) why would anyone expect him to not fabricate his scientific data as well.
There is no evidence he has committed fraud. No-one is looking for any. Climate science isn’t known for policing itself; remember Climategate.
But there’s no reason to doubt he is willing to.
So anyone who works with him should be questioned as to their integrity.
No point questioning the fake Nobel laureate, Kevin Trenberth. He’s a lost cause, in my opinion.

Alberta Slim
Reply to  M Courtney
February 2, 2015 6:40 am

Totally agree…………….

February 2, 2015 4:37 am

Well, about half of what Trenberth is saying may be correct.
Uh, the other half: not so much.

February 2, 2015 4:38 am

It’s interesting that Trenberth was one of the scientists involved in the latest Royal Society and National Academy of Science report. Here is part of point 20. of that report.
“20. If emissions of greenhouse gases were stopped, would the climate return to the conditions of 200 years ago?
No. Even if emissions of greenhouse gases were to suddenly stop, Earth’s surface temperature would not cool and return to the level in the pre-industrial era for thousands of years.
Figure 9. If global emissions were to suddenly stop, it would take a long time for surface air temperatures and the ocean to begin to cool, because the excess CO2 in the atmosphere would remain there for a long time and would continue to exert a warming effect. Model projections show how atmospheric CO2 concentration (a), surface air temperature (b), and ocean thermal expansion (c) would respond following a scenario of business-as-usual emissions ceasing in 2300 (red), a scenario of aggressive emission reductions, falling close to zero 50 years from now (orange), and two intermediate emissions scenarios (green and blue). The small downward tick in temperature at 2300 is caused by the elimination of emissions of short-lived greenhouse gases, including methane. Source: Zickfeld et al., 2013 (larger version)
If emissions of CO2 stopped altogether, it would take many thousands of years for atmospheric CO2 to return to ‘pre-industrial’ levels due to its very slow transfer to the deep ocean and ultimate burial in ocean sediments. Surface temperatures would stay elevated for at least a thousand years, implying extremely long-term commitment to a warmer planet due to past and current emissions, and sea level would likely continue to rise for many centuries even after temperature stopped increasing (see Figure 9). Significant cooling would be required to reverse melting of glaciers and the Greenland ice sheet, which formed during past cold climates. The current CO2-induced warming of Earth is therefore essentially irreversible on human timescales. The amount and rate of further warming will depend almost entirely on how much more CO2 humankind emits. ”
And here is a link to point 20 of that joint report, showing the graph. https://royalsociety.org/policy/projects/climate-evidence-causes/question-20/
Here is a list of the contributing scientists for that report. See Trenberth listed. https://royalsociety.org/policy/projects/climate-evidence-causes/contributors/
So how many thousands of trillions of dollars would it take over thousands of years to mitigate their CAGW? This is what these people believe isn’t it? Unbelievable.

Reply to  Neville
February 2, 2015 5:25 am

This garbage about ‘thousands of years’ is amazing. We know for a fact that CO2 levels rise and fall dramatically and during Ice Ages is at starvation level for plants. They suck it all down fast when it is cold.

Reply to  Neville
February 2, 2015 6:25 am

I followed your links and I would defy anyone to read the report and not run screaming into the street., convinced that the end was nigh.
However after the initial panic caused by the graph showing how CO2 induced temperature rise would continue inexorably for the next 200 years at least I looked at the one reference , Zickfield et al (2013 ) (over 30 authors on this paper) for the graph . That leads one to the RCP database , and a series of models, of which one, RCP2.6 is the least extreme, predicting a max temperature of 1C and then a decline to a plateau level for 200 years of 0.6C . RCP8.5 was the most extreme . However the source of the RCP reports states at one point :
“The RCPs are not forecasts or boundaries for potential emissions, land-use, or climate change. They are also not policy prescriptive in that they were chosen for scientific purposes to represent the span of the radiative forcing literature at the time of their selection and thus facilitate the mapping of a broad climate space. They therefore do not represent specific futures with respect to climate policy action (or no action) or technological, economic, or political viability of specific future pathways or climates.”
So , should the Royal society have used this chart in their, rather intimidating , report .
I have respect for the Royal Society and in other reports , such as a report to the Govt on the risks and precautions of fracking for example they show a sober and professional approach to which neither opponents or supporters of fracking could find objection.
Over climate change however they sometimes give the impression of having succumbed to a media led hysteria.
But I could be wrong .

David L.
February 2, 2015 4:45 am

These people that twist every weather event into proof of global warming are truly amazing. They have created a hypothesis that is impossible to falsify. If there were no blizzards it would be proof of global warming. But there are blizzards. No problem, that too is proof of global waiting.
Only Goldilocks can disprove global warming: all weather has to be neither too frequent nor too infrequent but “just right”, neither too hot nor too cold but “just right”, neither too dry nor too wet but “just right” and so forth.

Bruce Cobb
February 2, 2015 4:52 am

Sometimes global warmclimchange causes more snow, sometimes less. Sometimes it causes more droughts, sometimes more floods. Sometimes it causes more heat, sometimes more cold. It’s very tricksy, this globalwarmclimchange.

February 2, 2015 5:22 am

A quote from Thomas Henry Huxley (1825–95) may prove useful
“Science commits suicide when it adopts a creed”

Kevin Kilty
Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
February 2, 2015 7:51 am

Good quotation.

February 2, 2015 5:26 am

Trenberth is as credible on this as the UK’s Met was in predicting no more snow for Britain.

Reply to  hunter
February 2, 2015 12:06 pm

I believe that was Dr. David Viner.

February 2, 2015 5:43 am

Travesty Trenberth. Like a cat, he names himself.

Reply to  kim
February 2, 2015 12:05 pm

Trenberth was speaking of himself and all his warmist colleagues when he said it was a “travesty” that “we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment.” That ‘moment’ has now stretched on for another five years, yet Trenberth continues to flog the dead AGW horse. I’d hoped that in fifty years he would be remembered kindly in historical footnotes as Travesty Trenberth for his perspicacious remark in the Climategate Papers, and not as an unrelenting horse’s ass flogger. Ah, well.

Reply to  jorgekafkazar
February 2, 2015 1:25 pm

Why is it that the real travesty in that email is never mentioned? Trenberth goes beyond the “travesty” issue. He BLAMES THE DATA for the problem. In short, he is saying the model is (must) be correct so the thermometer is too blame. That friends is a real “travesty”.

wayne Job
February 2, 2015 5:45 am

Just been reading a book by Richard Morris, an archaeologist by trade, called “Time’s Anvil ” a real good look at our past.
Centered in England, that is a very studied land about our past history and climate. The outstanding was his facts about climate and the record of climate changes. He states as a fact that in our not to distant past the temp in England dropped 15C in a decade, may have been a few thousand years ago but it could happen any time.
He tends to say that temperatures drop rapidly sometimes even in interglacials according to the archaeological record, that is a worry. Global warming causes 300ft rises in sea level, rapidly as the ice age melts and warmists are worried about a few inches over a century or three. That we are due for the next ice age does not seem to concern these warmanistas.
That England and Europe flourished in a warmer climate some time ago seems to be lost on people that call themselves scientists, in days of yore, real thinking scientists had a broad knowledge over many fields and could think outside the square. Thus they found new knowledge, these people blaming all things on mans evil carbon habits, are charlatans and certainly not scientists.

Reply to  wayne Job
February 2, 2015 12:20 pm

In the great days of science, there wasn’t an oversupply of “scientists,” all trying to sweep together something to publish, no matter how venal or trivial or ridiculous. There wasn’t excessive taxation on the scale needed to pay scientists to publish politically motivated drivel. Science is dead. It has been replaced with a gigantic, Marxist, academic zombie.

February 2, 2015 5:49 am

How does he know that the (human-induced) climate change is only half responsible? Where are the calculations and data on which that statement is based? Surely a storm of such terrible magnitude must be entirely due to us miserable sinners?
/sarc, just in case 🙂

February 2, 2015 5:50 am

I actually feel sorry for Kevin Trenberth. He knows the observations don’t support his vision. He knows he has to make stuff up. He’s trapped.

M Courtney
Reply to  kim
February 2, 2015 6:37 am

No, he doesn’t.
No, he isn’t.
He just needs courage.

Eugene WR Gallun
Reply to  M Courtney
February 2, 2015 8:03 am

“A fool without courage will never face public ridicule.”
Quoted from the collected wisdom of the old Roman philosopher Ludicrous.
Eugene WR Gallun

Reply to  kim
February 2, 2015 4:38 pm

His made a very good career out of of his vision , like many of ‘the Team’ a third rate at best academic that has won the lottery through throwing out good scientific pratice in the favour off political whoring. No one needs to feel sorry for him , for he knows full well what he is doing .

February 2, 2015 6:13 am

New claim: Global warming is causing a precipitous fall in cerebral cortex and frontal lobe activity.

Tom O
February 2, 2015 6:32 am

Was the storm worsened by man? I do understand that there was quite a bit of snow in this storm, but I used to live in Maine, so quite a bit of snow isn’t all that unusual. I recall in 1964, when I first went to college at the University of Maine in Orono, leaving school Friday afternoon to come home for the weekend in a moderate snowstorm that lasted until about Sunday morning. Having cleared about 40 inches of snow out of the driveway by the time I was picked up to go back to school, we drove into the parking lot and could clearly see the top floor of the 4 floor dormitory I lived in at school – the banks of snow from the parking lot hid the bottom 3 floors, and when I walked down the path between the two dorms, the walkway had six foot banks of snow along each side.
In about 1976, a storm came in again on a Friday. It started in the morning, and by 3 o’clock we closed the store I worked at and a friend gave me a ride home. There was about 12 inches of snow in the drive at the time I got home but his Volkswagen bus plowed through it amazingly well. I later blew the drive way out, and in the morning, since the storm was ongoing, blew another 18 inches or so out, followed by another wasted effort of moving about 16 inches that afternoon. Sunday morning saw another run through the driveway with about 12 inches more. Big storms are not uncommon, never have been, never will be, and there is nothing unusual about the storms now, either.

February 2, 2015 6:36 am

Jesus saves and AGW is the source of all evil.
Glad that is settled.
Trenberth is an evangelist, except the savior isn’t Jesus, it’s green orthodoxy and his bloated self-importance.
Evangelism about climate change and regional weather misses the obvious. If you don’t like snow, then don’t live in New England. If you don’t like snow but have family and friends or simply enjoy the many other advantages of living in New England, then take your medicine and stay there. If you do like snow, live in Norway, seems like a beautiful place and people.
The planet provides a wonderful extravagance of different regional climates. Instead of dwelling on climate saviors and villains, one can decide what climate makes them happiest and work towards moving there. It may take 1 year, 5 years, or 10 years. Doesn’t matter, stop fretting and whining about weather and just do it. From hot to cold, dry to wet, the planet can fulfill any climate preference.

February 2, 2015 6:43 am

There are very few things as reliable as mendacity.

February 2, 2015 6:44 am

As a former multi-decadal operational meteorologist in the northeastern U.S, in the late 1990s I began looking at winter storminess in the U.S. Northeast, and surrounding areas, using historical information since the history began in the 17th century. I relied on David Ludlum’s seminal work a great deal. While not a statistician, I concluded that winter storms were more severe in the former centuries, when it was colder and the world was in the throes of the LIA. Even winter storms in the 19th century seemed more numerous and boisterous in certain periods, again using and relying on Ludlum’s work. In addition, there seemed to be a cyclicity to storminess. I have tried to relate this to the sunspot cycle, and there does seem to be some correlation (correlation not being causation, though). Winter storminess seems to increase during the “cold” 30 year (or so) periods associated with cool PDO; witness the late 19th century-to-late Teens stormy period in the Northeast, especially the Teens with especially damaging Nor’easters, and the following period of the late 1940s through the mid 1970s. Perhaps this relates somehow to 3 consecutive sunspot cycles (and the Hale Cycle) – a 33-year period, comprised of 3 11-year periods of 2 negative solar polarities sandwiching 1 positive polarity period, followed by the opposite polarity situation, with this alternating situation nested within larger amplitude cycles. I believe this quasi-66 year cycle also extends to a more dominant and noticeable quasi-200 (198) year cycle, and then to about 600 years (especially for temperature – witness multi-century alternating warm and cold periods – about 300 years each?). We seem to have entered another multi-decadal increase in Northeast winter storminess since about 2010 (maybe 2008 or 2009), which I believe will persist through 2040 or 2045 or so. Of course, winter storms are more numerous (and more intense) during El Nino winters (by about a 3-to-1 factor as compared to neutral winters), as has become more well-known in the past decade. NOAA/NWS management was not interested in any of this. But, that’s what the data indicated (spoke loudly) to me. With indications that the next solar cycle will also be low, perhaps very low, I believe it’s going to be somewhat colder with more winter storminess in the U.S. Northeast in the next 3 decades than in the 1975-2010 period. If so, my fear is that cries of a human-caused storminess increase will grow, and that the wholly natural cause for it will be ignored, with a consequent continuation of this deeply flawed and resource-wasteful anti-science of AGW, and especially CAGW. As a pessimist, I unfortunately forecast that the incorrect theory of (C)AGW will continue – and likely grow – for many more decades.

Reply to  4caster
February 2, 2015 6:57 am

Please comment on how it is that since the 1970s, the Earth’s Climate warmed, yet solar output diminished.

Bob Weber
Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 7:58 am

You could do a better job of observing the magnitudes of solar cycles warren.
Cycles 21 & 22 since the 1970s were two of the highest cycles in the record, from 1978-1997. Even cycle 23 was greater in magnitude than about a dozen other cycles going back to 1700, and it lasted longer than the average cycle. In contrast, this cycle is the lowest in 100 years, and from all indications, has started declining towards the minimum.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 1:37 pm

You could also explain the concept of lag. Wouldn’t do any good, though.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 3, 2015 6:14 am

IIRC, solar brightness increased over that period, presumably due to fewer particulates in the atmosphere.

February 2, 2015 6:46 am

Here are some IPCC projections about 14 years ago.

IPCC – Climate Change 2001:
Working Group II: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability
….Milder winter temperatures will decrease heavy snowstorms but could cause an increase in freezing rain if average daily temperatures fluctuate about the freezing point….
IPCC – Working Group II: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability
….Warmer winters and fewer cold spells, because of climate change, will decrease cold-related mortality in many temperate countries…..


February 2, 2015 6:50 am

Seems like there is a better use of mind(time). Three(3) Snow Storms this week. It`s called WEATHER. Always has been. Always will.

Bruce Cobb
February 2, 2015 6:51 am

From http://www.livescience.com/31880-countdown-10-worst-blizzards.html
“More than 400 people in the Northeast died during the Great Blizzard, the worst death toll in United States history for a winter storm. On March 11 and March 12 in 1888, this devastating nor’easter dumped 40 to 50 inches (100 to 127 cm) of snow in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York. Huge snowdrifts buried houses and trains, and 200 ships sank in waves whipped up by fierce winds.”
So, was that 1888 blizzard due to “global warming” or “climate change”? “Climate science” is so confusing!

Reply to  Bruce Cobb
February 2, 2015 6:55 am

I’d say it was due to local weather conditions, wouldn’t you?

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 7:17 am

Yes, natural variability, just like this recent blizzard. If it was ‘climate’ then the annual winter water vapor for that region would have increased.
It hasn’t.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 7:25 am

warrenlb, I agree, but Trenberth adds more spice. Kevin Trenberth apparently said that the local New England Blizzard was worsened by human-induced global warming. See the first sentence of the post.

Above average sea surface temperatures increase snowfall, consistent with model projections
Snowstorms are an expected feature of winter weather in the Northeast, but this blizzard exhibits the fingerprints of climate change in several distinct ways.
Dr. Kevin Trenberth:
The number 1 cause of this is that it is winter. In winter it is cold over the continent. But it is warm over the oceans and the contrast between the cold continent and the warm Gulf Stream and surrounding waters is increasing. At present sea surface temperatures are more than 2F above normal over huge expanses (1000 miles) off the east coast and water vapor in the atmosphere is about 10% higher as a result. About half of this can be attributed to climate change.”

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 7:32 am

… and if (assuming for the sake of argument) the climate did change, that doesn’t automatically prove that man-made co2 did it!!

Alberta Slim
February 2, 2015 7:02 am

Trenberth came out of his hole; saw his shadow and, determined that we will get 6o more years of global warming.

Frederik Michiels
February 2, 2015 7:04 am

sarcasm Trendberth is right every extreme weather, hot, cold, wet, dry is caused by the mighty molecule CO2 and it’s dreaded cause of climate change Everyone knows that /sarcasm
but wait…..
Isn’t any “common sense” reader of any article pro or contra AGW aware that….
climate is always changing?
though it’s unbelievable how they now go from believable points in the early 90’s to complete erratic bulls***t to promote global warming.
honestly i wonder what kind of study and discoveries guys like Spencer, Bob tisdale, and other scientists with “nutral” vieuwpoints would bring if they had the same research funds as the IPCC has
i bet much more interesting stuff then what the IPCC does!

Reply to  Frederik Michiels
February 2, 2015 7:06 am

@Frederik. The IPCC does no research.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 7:23 am

The IPCC, in effect, ‘commissions’ research which suits their advocacy agenda.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 8:37 am

“… if they had the same research funds as the IPCC ”
But we know that left-wing organizations don’t use their own funds to ‘commission’ the research they need for their activist agenda. The actual funds mostly come from tax-payers (like you and me), funneled (in effect) through a gigantic money-laundering scheme known as “Big Government”.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 1:38 pm

The World Wildlife Fund [WWF] was doing ≈40% of the IPCC’s research. Until they were both caught.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 3:49 pm

February 2, 2015 at 1:38 pm
The World Wildlife Fund [WWF] was doing ≈40% of the IPCC’s research. Until they were both caught.

Ha ha. Though you are coming close to the bone.

Quadrant – 2014
WWF cash also goes to the private research institute, TERI, of IPCC chairman Rajendra Pachauri, TERI’s founder and chief executive. Pachauri is meant to run the IPCC as an impartial arbiter of science. Yet his institute took the WWF money even after the IPCC’s 2007 report came out containing the melting Himalayan glaciers howlers based on a WWF report which, in turn, was based on third-hand speculation….

Could this be why the Himalayan glacier fairytale got past the peer ‘reviewers’ of the IPCC ‘gold standard’ report? Naaaah.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 3:50 pm

This is what leads to anger and voodoo science I suppose – money.

Reply to  warrenlb
February 2, 2015 4:33 pm

True but they do pick which ‘research’ to use and that is the key to ‘success ‘

Reply to  Frederik Michiels
February 2, 2015 3:56 pm

Pachauri / IPCC / WWF / Money / activists – no wonder the IPCC is the Gold Standard.

Pachauri Takes WWF Money
Last week, a sustainability summit organized by the chairman of the IPCC was held in India. The World Wildlife Fund provided funding.
Why Taking WWF Money Matters
If the IPCC had done the sensible thing and banned activist publications, would the institute run by its chairman still be receiving activist cash?

Reply to  Jimbo
February 2, 2015 6:51 pm

Thanks, Jimbo. Valuable info, as usual.
These groups learned frrom people like Al Sharpton how easy it is to shakedown corporations, and corporations learned from the enviro groups how easy it is to use enviro groups to attack their competitors.
Thos who constantly try to paint folks like us as ‘conspiracy theorists’ either do not understand, or they’re just using Alinsky-style character assassination tactics.
‘Conspiracy theorist’ was a term invented by the press when Sen. Joe McCarthy was accusing people of being communist sympathizers and front men. The label stuck when McCarthy was caught saying he had a list of communists in the State Department. It turned out to be his laundry list [which is where that term came from, too].
When the Berlin Wall came down, top-secret Soviet documents were published that proved categorically that McCarthy was right. His problem was simple stupidity. He tried to pull a fast one.
In fact, there are conspiracies going on all the time. People who don’t believe that are totally naive and credulous. Just because the Chinese and the Russians are kissy-face with us, that doesn’t mean they are not actively conspiring to destroy our country. They are. In 1776 Adam Smith wrote:

“People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices.”

Conspiracies are part of human nature. They are a survival trait. Anyone not cognizant of that fact is at a huge disadvantage.

February 2, 2015 7:15 am

Bruce are you using actual reports of the time because I think you will find that the modelled adjusted reports of the time claim a light dusting and the 200 ships were models sunk on the lake in Central Park during a squall (sarc)

February 2, 2015 7:17 am

I thought it was global warming. This would imply temperatures rising over the entire planet. One would expect temperature gradients to lessen in such a situation. Clearly that isn’t the case though.
They want it both or all ways, thus the “climate change” BS. Everything is deemed indicative of climate change, specifically man-made.

Michael Anderson
Reply to  deebodk
February 2, 2015 8:37 am

That’s why I like to call it “anthropogenic global/local warming/change/disruption/cooling”. Covers all contingencies, and hey – I didn’t need to waste precious time thinking it up, they did. 🙂

carbon bigfoot
February 2, 2015 7:45 am

The ONLY WAY THE ONLY WAY is to start suing the bastards like Kevin. These morons will start to back off when their Junk Science is exposed and personally starts costing them money.

Kevin Kilty
February 2, 2015 7:47 am

The number 1 cause of this is that it is winter. In winter it is cold over the continent….

If he means the proximate cause, then that would be the deep arctic trough that developed over the Eastern U.S. If instead he means the root cause, then that would be that the Earth has an atmosphere containing water vapor. Winter is not a reasonable explanation. What happens to these guys once they gain some notoriety?

February 2, 2015 8:03 am

Trenberth: “About half of this can be attributed to climate change.”
Is anybody else put off by this kind of quantification? I know, it’s done over and over, all the time.
But I mean… really… they think they can calculate percentages of things like that? Really?

Bruce Cobb
Reply to  Lane Core Jr. (@OneLaneHwy)
February 2, 2015 8:07 am

Well, it is half vast science.

John F. Hultquist
February 2, 2015 8:05 am

Thanks Bob.
It is hard to keep up with these spokesclowns. Gina McCarthy went to Aspen to give her take on the climate. I loved the photo with her standing behind an oak podium. A nice touch.
~~~~~~ Snow photos, more interesting than saying snow things:
Use the “IMAGES” tab and the search text:
Horse-Drawn Snow Roller

Reply to  John F. Hultquist
February 2, 2015 12:31 pm

We may need those rollers. Horses might be a problem, though. I could easily find 77 partial horses, but I’m not sure where we’d get the front halves.

February 2, 2015 8:15 am
February 2, 2015 8:15 am

Thanks, Bob.
You write: “Kevin Trenberth’s speculations about water vapor must refer to annual, not winter data associated with blizzards.”
This seems to be a common problem; using general data to analyze localized observations.
Internal contradictions in the AGW hypothesis, presented as “settled science”, as bursting all over the place.

Michael Anderson
Reply to  Andres Valencia
February 2, 2015 2:03 pm

Exactly, just as with the judgement in Dimmock v Secretary Of State For Education And Skills:
Justice Burton’s view: “In scene 12 Hurricane Katrina and the consequent devastation in New Orleans is ascribed to global warming. It is common ground that there is insufficient evidence to show that.”
Other scientific views: The World Meteorological Organization explains that “though there is evidence both for and against the existence of a detectable anthropogenic signal in the tropical cyclone climate record to date, no firm conclusion can be made on this point.” They also clarified that “no individual tropical cyclone can be directly attributed to climate change.”

Bruce Cobb
February 2, 2015 8:34 am

But, but, but “climate change” is “threatening” the ski industry, as well as other winter sports, maple sugaring, tourism, etc. etc. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/13/us/climate-change-threatens-ski-industrys-livelihood.html?pagewanted=all
Heads they win, tails science loses.

Reply to  Bruce Cobb
February 2, 2015 12:26 pm

I was thinking the same thing. Some shaman suggest climate change will mean less snow, putting ski areas at great risk. Indeed, isn’t there an organization called “Save our Winters.” Now we get another shaman claiming climate change will mean more snow. Maybe we need to get both on a podium and debate as to which outcome (more or less snow) is more likely.

Paul Courtney
Reply to  Mohatdebos
February 14, 2015 3:35 pm

The good news-You would only need one Warmista to present both sides. The bad news-no self-respecting climate scientist would lower him/herself to appear on the same stage with that deni*r in the mirror.

Michael Anderson
February 2, 2015 8:35 am

Rent-seeking mendacious SOBs like Trenberth we will always have with us. The problem is getting the mainstream media to understand that’s all he is.

Eugene WR Gallun
February 2, 2015 8:36 am

An oldie but a goody.
(See the courtroom scene in the movie “The Caine Mutiny”.)
As greenhouse gases still accrete
This captain of the climate wars
Is searching for the missing heat
That he believes the ocean stores
He’ll prove to all humanity
That danger in the deep resides
The Kraken that he knows to be
That Davy Jones’s Locker hides
The soul’s more heavy than we think
A truth that everyone must face
And to what depths a soul may sink —
Oh, to what dark and dismal place!
Does Captain Trenberth understand
That data offers no appeal?
He tumbles in his restless hand
Three clacking balls of stainless steel
When silence faces stare at you
It’s always best to shut your jaw
But Trenberth is without a clue
As he believes they stare in awe
Eugene WR Gallun

February 2, 2015 8:41 am

Seasonal averages really have very little to do with extreme events, like blizzards. Arctic amplification is being blamed for extreme Jet Stream patterns, which bring warm humid air from the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic crashing into cold dry air from central Canada. These events obviously occur on timescales of days to maybe a week, so “DJF” averages are moot.

John M
Reply to  Barry
February 2, 2015 9:45 am

Barry, what were the extreme Jet Stream patterns in the 70s blamed on?

Reply to  John M
February 2, 2015 11:29 am


Reply to  John M
February 2, 2015 6:58 pm

…and still silence.

Reply to  Barry
February 2, 2015 4:30 pm

The Jet only became know thanks to Japanese using them to lurch balloons into the USA during WW2 , and yet there existed long before they where ‘found ‘ and therefore any affect they may have had existed only these got blamed on something else. Now that is a useful lesson for ‘settled ‘ climate ‘science’

Reply to  Barry
February 2, 2015 9:18 pm

Isn’t it odd, and not a little bit strange that Barry and his friend Warren are quick to say ‘it’s just local weather,’ when it’s cold. I look forward to their saying the same, when its reported as warm. But I don’t think I’ll hold my breath.

February 2, 2015 8:41 am

It still seems to me that a massive amount of cold air would be required to keep the water vapour forming into ice rather then into rain. Were does the cold come from??

John F. Hultquist
Reply to  Alf
February 2, 2015 11:54 am

For the US east the warm moist air comes from the south.
When it rises, the volume increases, molecules are farther apart, and the temperature drops. Meaning the random motion of the molecules is less. The water vapor might then condense or solidify (many forms).
When there is cold air coming from the northwest – cold air is more dense and will stay nearer the surface – the warmer/moist (less dense) air will get forced up. What form the water is in when it hits the ground is dependent on several factors. Note, though, that the cold air on the ground is not necessarily the source of what is falling.
Search for warm-front & cold-front, and cyclogenesis. Maybe start with the IMAGES tab.

February 2, 2015 8:49 am

Here are some historical blizzards per CLIMATE4YOU fine web page for New England when global warming induced climate change had not even been invented . This region is prone to this type of weather as far back as our records go. Global warming had very little to do with it back then and very little to do with it today
These latest alarmists statements are all part of the pre Paris climate conference posturing . Expect more to come .
Winter of 1740-1741
Not only was the winter 1740-1741 characterised by very low temperatures, but also by huge amounts of snow. People in the region saw this winter as the most severe since the European settlement began. There was 23 snow storms in all, most of them being strong. On 3 February about a foot of snow fell, and about one week later there were two more storms, filling the roads in Newbury, Massachusetts, up to the top of fences. Snow depths of about 3 metres were reported from some places.
1747-1748: A memorable winter in Massachusetts
In 1891 Sidney Perley (Perley 2001) writes: “The old people of to-day think that we do not have as severe winters as they had when they were in their youth, and they certainly have good reasons for such considerations. The winter of 1747-48 was one of the memorable winters that used to be talked about by our grandfathers when the snow whirled above deep drifts around their half-buried houses. There were about thirty snow storms, and they came storm after storm until the snow lay four feet deep on the level, making travelling exceedingly difficult. On the twenty-second of February, snow in the woods measured four and one-half feet; and on the twenty-ninth there was no getting about except on snow shoes”.
WINTER 1786-1787
December 1786 was unusually severe with frequent snow storms. A very strong storm began December 4, resulting in flooding and the loss of several ships. Wind pressure and low air pressure lifted the ocean surface near Boston, and water overflowed the ‘pier’. Quantities of wood and lumber floated away. Great quantities of snow covered the landscape so deep, that travel became difficult. At Rockland, Maine, snow remained on the ground as late as April 10, 1787. Later the same week, another terrible snow storm with strong northeast wind began, continuing for about two days. This storm deposited huge amounts of snow, so travel now became extremely difficult, and in many places impossible (Perley 2001). In Boston, a number of people had to be employed in ‘levelling’ the snow in the streets. The next day the Massachusetts Gazette of the time said, “It is hoped they and many others will turn out this day for the same laudable and necessary purpose.” The roads were completely filled from wall throughout New England. This was one of the most difficult storms to withstand that was ever experienced in New England. Several persons who were out in it became lost and died in the snow.

Eugene WR Gallun
February 2, 2015 9:22 am

Global warming induced climate change has increased the ferocity of ocean thunderstorms
putting the world’s already threatened whale stocks into even greater danger!
Said one GreedPeace scientists — Imagine yourself in the middle of a whale pod and all around you the waters hiss to steam from carbon enhanced bolts of fire from the sky! These whales must be equipped with moblle lightening rods!
Contact ROD-THE-PODS to make your donation. Remember in a green world – LESS IS MORE – so the less money you have the more we will have. Donate As Big As The Whales Facing Imminent Electrocution!
Eugene WR Gallun

Richard Keen
February 2, 2015 9:42 am

Bob, thanks for the detailed rebuttal to the silly remarks by Trenberth, Dr. Jennifer Francis, and the Mann himself. Actually, it’s a much more thorough analysis than the idiotic remarks the three put into that Climate Nexus article really deserve.
Dr. Francis says: “there are a few climate-change related factors that are likely conspiring to make this storm potentially one for the record books”. The key weasel words here are “likely” and “potentially”, since the storm didn’t top the record books. Sorry.
Mikey says: “The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has found that Nor’easters like this one may grow stronger w/ human-caused climate change, as they are driven by the contrast between cold Arctic air masses and ever-warming ocean surface temperatures”. The key weasel word here is “may”, and the storm didn’t. It was a pretty good storm, like hundreds of others over the North Atlantic in the past century.
But all three tout the same meme about “both a strong land-ocean temperature contrast to help fuel the jet stream and also additional oceanic moisture” due to higher ocean temperatures. However, doesn’t “arctic amplification” also warm the winter temperature over land MORE than it warms the lower latitude and heat-hiding oceans, thereby REDUCING the temperature contrast? That “should” weaken storms overall when the world – especially continental North America in the winter – warm. As should be obvious to anybody but a modeler, it actually snows more in cold winters in the northeast USA http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/29/frequency-of-big-snows-northeast-u-s-and-colorado/
And the Extra Moisture claim violates physics. Since snow is frozen, the amount of moisture available for a snow storm is capped by the water content of the atmosphere at zero (0) C, known as the freezing point. Warm it up to get more moisture, and you get rain, not snow. Two years ago I wrote a response to the same nonsense from Seth Borenstein in a WUWT post “Whac-a-moling Seth Borenstein at AP over his erroneous extreme weather claims, Comments on Yesterday’s paean to Global Warming” Posted on February 19, 2013
Yesterday it was Chicago’s turn, so to pre-emptively strike at the inevitable Warming angle on that one, here’s some stuff about the last few big storms there: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/02/03/chicago-snow-2011-and-1967-global-warming-then-too/
The Big Wet Snow of the type global warming should produce hit Chicago in 1967. That’s 48 years ago.
So now we have to whac-a-mole Trenberth, Mann, and Francis.
Who will it be tomorrow, or next year?

Richard Keen
Reply to  Richard Keen
February 2, 2015 9:54 am

More on cold and snow….
•Colder winters are three times more likely to be snowier than the median.
•Snowy winters are three times more likely to be cold.
•Warm winters are three times more likely to have less snow than the median.
•Less snowy winters are three times more likely to be mild.

tom s
February 2, 2015 10:45 am

Everything Trentberth says is a travesty.

February 2, 2015 11:09 am


Michael Anderson
February 2, 2015 11:17 am

To anyone who still encounters the “argument” that Trenberth or anyone in his camp is a “climate scientist” and his critics not, I heartily recommend “A Rum Affair: a true story of botanical fraud” by Karl Sabbagh, 1999 Da Capo Press. Long story short, a man considered an absolute giant in the field of botany planted specimens of previously undescribed species in the Scottish Hebrides, creating whatever passes for a sensation in the field of botany. His grad students assisted him every step of the way. Unfortunately for him, his fraud was found out by a dedicated amateur. The good scientist treated him to a stream of vituperation and mockery; in the words of someone we all know, he tried to borehole him. But word did get out, the expert’s “discoveries” were discredited and the whistle-blower exonerated.
The expert had begun with a theory: that certain plants had survived the last Ice Age in the Hebrides. Proceeding from theory, he fabricated the “proof” to support it. This was the 1940s, folks, not the 18th century. Incidentally, the author makes no effort to draw any parallels between this matter and the one under discussion; he has no agenda other than to related an interesting tale. But you can’t help thinking about cold fusion, and biofeedback, and other pseudoscientific frauds perpetrated on the public by “experts” and reported with enthusiasm by the mainstream media – can you? 🙂

Michael Anderson
February 2, 2015 11:19 am

Worth adding: there wasn’t a lot of money in scientific fraud back then, certainly nothing on the order of a billion dollars a day, but there was – and still is – prestige, tenure, publish or perish, acclaim, novelty – all the things that make a scientist stand out from the herd.

February 2, 2015 12:01 pm

Forcings (per unit area) have units Watts i.e. Joules/sec. To produce energy change (Joules), the forcing must exist for a time period. Temperature change is energy change divided by effective thermal capacitance. Thus a scale factor times the time-integral of the forcing produces the temperature change.
CO2 has been considered to be a forcing. Because, during the previous glaciations and inter-glacials, the CO2 level and temperature went up and down nearly together, the energy change is obviously not a result of a scale factor times the time integral of the CO2 level. This observation actually proves that CO2 has no significant effect on temperature at least up to about 280 ppmv.
This same type assessment over the entire Phanerozoic demonstrates that ‘climate sensitivity’ (the average global temperature increase caused by a doubling of the CO2 level to 580 ppmv from the pre-industrial level of 280 ppmv) is not significantly different from zero.
The two natural factors that do explain average global temperature since before 1900 (including the flat since before 2001) with 95% correlation are disclosed at http://agwunveiled.blogspot.com and also in a peer reviewed paper published in Energy and Environment, vol. 25, No. 8, 1455-1471.

February 2, 2015 12:16 pm

Since when is there and increase in atmospheric water vapor? Not according NASA’s own NVAP study Vonder Harr et al 2012 ““By examining the 12 year record [1988-1999], a decrease of TPW at a rate of -0.29 mm / decade is observed. This relationship is significant at the 95 % but not at the 99 % level. A downward trend would be intriguing since there should be a positive slope if a global warming signal was present. However, by subdividing the data into two halves (1988-1993) and 1994-1999, trends with opposite signs are detected. Since the trend is not robust by subdividing the data, we conclude the global TPW has no significant trend from the NVAP dataset studied here.”
Has there been a new study which shows an increase that I’m missing?

Edward Hurst
February 2, 2015 12:19 pm

Did the storm in question come in from the North Atlantic?

John M
Reply to  Edward Hurst
February 2, 2015 1:23 pm

In the context here, “North Atlantic” refers to the portion of the Atlantic Ocean north of the equator, so yes, it did.

February 2, 2015 2:09 pm

When they lack evidence, they often try to put the onus onto anyone questioning their conjecture:
“…the null hypothesis should now be reversed, thereby placing the burden of proof on showing that there is no human influence.”
~ Kevin Trenberth

That never got any traction. But not for lack of trying.
The default position throughout history is that the climate changes naturally. Blaming human activity is only a very recent idea. But despite many thousands of scientists and others looking for evidence of AGW over the past century, there is still no evidence whatever that humans are the cause of anything global.
We may be. But people like Trenberth have the burden of demonstrating it. Skeptics do not have the burden of proving anything. Skeptics have nothing to prove. We just say, “Show us. Prove your case.”
I suggest that Kevin Trenberth should try to find an acceptable measurement of AGW, showing the specific fraction of global warming attributable to human emissions. How much global warming do we cause, if any? That would be a first — and it would put him on the short list for a real Nobel Prize.

February 2, 2015 2:21 pm
Just an engineer
February 2, 2015 2:51 pm

Because of Climate Activism, our grandchildren won’t know what science is.

Reply to  Just an engineer
February 2, 2015 4:41 pm

good one , and its a sad thing too.

Reply to  Just an engineer
February 3, 2015 5:59 pm

Neither do the so called warmests know what honest science is

Robert B
February 2, 2015 5:02 pm

Has anyone suggested to Trenberth to do an energy balance?
Global warming doesn’t explain the variation in ocean surface temperatures. Overall, there is about 90 W/m2 of energy in the latent heat of water vapour calculated from a 1m average rainfall around the globe. An extra 0.9W/m2 should add 1cm more to average rainfalls and 4 in. to snowfalls (without warming anything) at most. Considering 90% warms the oceans, that’s only half an inch of snow out of 19 that can be attributed to extra downwelling IR.
Why it would be concentrated over the NE of the US needs something better than a bit of hand waving except to the chattering classes.

February 2, 2015 7:29 pm

Peter Hannam, the SMH and the CSIRO are still trying to sell to us that 2014 was the warmest year ever, even though NASA (And NOAA) have since retracted that claim.

masInt branch 4 C3I in is
February 2, 2015 7:49 pm

Ahhhh !
Lord Ke[l[vin Tren[d]b[r]e[a]rth on a Monday.
We need to employ “Twain Logic” and get him to talk more.
Har har.
Col. ‘Surfer Dude’ on a beach in Nam during an Army Air Corp Op by helicopters observes, “I don’t know … it smells like … Victory.”
Ha ha

Chris Lynch
February 2, 2015 7:57 pm

Here in normally exceptionally mild Limerick in the south west of Ireland we are enjoying our third snowfall in three weeks.The local warmistas are “blaming” it on a “wildly fluctuating jetstream”!

February 2, 2015 8:26 pm

Nor’Easters are fueled primarily by horizontal temperature gradient. Since global warming warms the Arctic more than other parts of the globe, the temperature gradient that fuels Nor’Easters would be decreased by global warming.

February 3, 2015 7:20 pm

It’s sad when CO2 believers show their lack of elementary Geologic knowledge.
It’s more than sad when they show they can’t do Analyse of more than 2 variables at the same time. Had they studied math they would have had to pass that on their way to higher mathematical analyses…
IF their Faith not blinded their eyes, they would have known that they should have had to analyse the two last years vulcanoeruptions from Japan up to Berings Straith and down to Los Angeles. Well at least the many hundred vulcanoeruptions over +1.5 and each one’s impact on saltination of seawater which due to Earth rotation and existing Sea streams/straiths in the Northern parts of the Pacific causes effects on air + 3 meter over Sea up to stratosphere as well as underwater streams. Both type of Streams has had a hugh effect on the Ice Sheet between Bergings Straith northwards to the North Pole. most on airborne natural hydrologic systems east of that line. Windsystems above what pilots call LL-hight has thus changed direction, as usual when this happened the last 10 000 years. Due to location of the many eruptions the cold weather, blizzards et cetra has caused north America problems.
Same problems but worse caused what we in Europe calls the Little Ice Age. Then the eruptions that made the difference occured from southeast Greenland over to Iceland and up to Svalbard.
Might not be fun having to read as much as needed. That’s one thing CO2-believers. But havn’t you even remembered Thus shall not…. and so on.
UN isn’t a World Goverment. IPCC isn’t a University filled with welleducated scholars only using Theories of Science. Sadly their skills lack in almost all needed Sciences. But that’s ok. People are allowed to be stupied, showing it isn’t the best way there is….
Where have all the money gone?

Mark Johnson
February 6, 2015 10:17 am

Mr. Trenberth should be deported back to New Zealand. And while we are at it, send Mr. Gavin Schmidt back to the UK.

February 10, 2015 8:34 pm

” “Sea surface temperatures off the coast of New England right now are at record levels, 11.5C (21F) warmer than normal in some locations,” says Penn State climate researcher Michael Mann.”

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