Secondly, Dr. Roy Spencer has been looking for this for years in the satellite data and hasn’t found it.
Thirdly, radiosonde coverage in their area of study is pretty sparse. From the University of Graz:
While many users are familiar with traditional radiosonde temperature and moisture data, the spatial and temporal coverage of radiosonde data are limited, especially over ocean and high latitude areas. Satellite remote sounding provides far greater temporal and spatial coverage of the entire planet.
Fourth, if they have really found it, where’s the picture or graph of it in the press release? You’d think that would be front and center. Instead, it isn’t shown, and they don’t even mention the title of the paper or the DOI. Essentially they are saying “trust us, no need to read the paper”. I’ve looked for the paper on the ERL website, and have yet to locate it. It is not listed in today’s ERL news feed (as of this writing) (UPDATE: located, and the abstract is posted below). It’s like Lewandowsky’s seepage paper, that had a press release over a week ago, but the paper is still not published.
Fifth, Steve Sherwood is a well known climate alarmist, and his confirmation bias seems quite strong to me. For example, see this WUWT post where we state “Professor Sherwood is inverting the scientific method”.
Sixth, by their own admission, they had to throw out data, and to do a series of adjustments to station data to find the signal they were looking for. That sounds more like a selecting process in the scope of confirmation bias than science. (added) The real question is, how many stations did they keep as they define as “good”?
Color me skeptical, I’m sure Dr. Roy Spencer will have something to say about it.
From the University of New South Wales:
New publicly available dataset confirms tropospheric hot spot and increased winds over Southern Ocean
Researchers have published results in Environmental Research Letters confirming strong warming in the upper troposphere, known colloquially as the tropospheric hotspot. The hot has been long expected as part of global warming theory and appears in many global climate models.
The inability to detect this hotspot previously has been used by those who doubt man-made global warming to suggest climate change is not occurring as a result of increasing carbon dioxide emissions.
“Using more recent data and better analysis methods we have been able to re-examine the global weather balloon network, known as radiosondes, and have found clear indications of warming in the upper troposphere,” said lead author ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science Chief Investigator Prof Steve Sherwood.
“We were able to do this by producing a publicly available temperature and wind data set of the upper troposphere extending from 1958-2012, so it is there for anyone to see.”
The new dataset was the result of extending an existing data record and then removing artefacts caused by station moves and instrument changes. This revealed real changes in temperature as opposed to the artificial changes generated by alterations to the way the data was collected.
No climate models were used in the process that revealed the tropospheric hotspot. The researchers instead used observations and combined two well-known techniques — linear regression and Kriging.
“We deduced from the data what natural weather and climate variations look like, then found anomalies in the data that looked more like sudden one-off shifts from these natural variations and removed them,” said Prof Sherwood.
“All of this was done using a well established procedure developed by statisticians in 1977.”
The results show that even though there has been a slowdown in the warming of the global average temperatures on the surface of the Earth, the warming has continued strongly throughout the troposphere except for a very thin layer at around 14-15km above the surface of the Earth where it has warmed slightly less.
As well as confirming the tropospheric hotspot, the researchers also found a 10% increase in winds over the Southern Ocean. The character of this increase suggests it may be the result of ozone depletion.
“I am very interested in these wind speed increases and whether they may have also played some role in slowing down the warming at the surface of the ocean,” said Prof Sherwood.
“However, one thing this improved data set shows us is that we should no longer accept the claim that there is warming missing higher in the atmosphere. That warming is now clearly seen.”
UPDATE: The paper has been located. http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/10/5/054007
Atmospheric changes through 2012 as shown by iteratively homogenized radiosonde temperature and wind data (IUKv2)
Steven C Sherwood and Nidhi Nishant
We present an updated version of the radiosonde dataset homogenized by Iterative Universal Kriging (IUKv2), now extended through February 2013, following the method used in the original version (Sherwood et al 2008 Robust tropospheric warming revealed by iteratively homogenized radiosonde data J. Clim.21 5336–52). This method, in effect, performs a multiple linear regression of the data onto a structural model that includes both natural variability, trends, and time-changing instrument biases, thereby avoiding estimation biases inherent in traditional homogenization methods. One modification now enables homogenized winds to be provided for the first time. This, and several other small modifications made to the original method sometimes affect results at individual stations, but do not strongly affect broad-scale temperature trends. Temperature trends in the updated data show three noteworthy features. First, tropical warming is equally strong over both the 1959–2012 and 1979–2012 periods, increasing smoothly and almost moist-adiabatically from the surface (where it is roughly 0.14 K/decade) to 300 hPa (where it is about 0.25 K/decade over both periods), a pattern very close to that in climate model predictions. This contradicts suggestions that atmospheric warming has slowed in recent decades or that it has not kept up with that at the surface. Second, as shown in previous studies, tropospheric warming does not reach quite as high in the tropics and subtropics as predicted in typical models. Third, cooling has slackened in the stratosphere such that linear trends since 1979 are about half as strong as reported earlier for shorter periods. Wind trends over the period 1979–2012 confirm a strengthening, lifting and poleward shift of both subtropical westerly jets; the Northern one shows more displacement and the southern more intensification, but these details appear sensitive to the time period analysed. There is also a trend toward more easterly winds in the middle and upper troposphere of the deep tropics.
The paper is open access: http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/10/5/054007/pdf/1748-9326_10_5_054007.pdf
Here is the figure from the paper that should have been in their press release:
The SI is pretty thin, containing a single figure with no explanation: http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/10/5/054007/media/erl054007_suppdata.pdf