NOAA declares current El Niño stronger than 1997-98 event, then says record warm temperatures have little to do with it

From the department of ENSO denial, “the Brady Bunch” and NOAA’s weather.gov comes this ridiculous statement:

Was El Niño solely responsible for the record warm winter for the contiguous United States? No, but for some areas, like the northern U.S., the El Niño likely played a role. We know that other factors including climate patterns in the north Atlantic, Pacific, and tropics also influenced our weather during winter. Longer-term climate change was also a player, similar to Alice, the Brady family’s housekeeper—an ever-present force influencing outcomes to varying degrees.

They say that with a straight face, while at the same time pushing this graph showing about 90% of the CONUS above normal:

It seems blindingly obvious to me (and to Dr. Ryan Maue) that ENSO is the main driver of these warmer and record temperature, but NOAA would never show the public a graph like this that clearly demonstrates global temperature tracks the tropical temperature increase from the 2015-2016 ENSO event very, very, well:

ENSO-vs-Global-temperature

It is instructive to look at what NOAA wrote about the 1997-1998 super El Niño:

The winter of 1997-1998 was marked by a record breaking El Nino event and unusual extremes in parts of the country. Overall, the winter (December 1997- February 1998) was the second warmest and seventh wettest since 1895. Severe weather events included flooding in the southeast, an ice storm in the northeast, flooding in California, and tornadoes in Florida. The winter was dominated by an El Niño-influenced weather pattern, with wetter than normal conditions across much of the southern third of the country and warmer than normal conditions across much of the northern two-thirds of the country.

The first two months of 1998 were the warmest and wettest in the 104-year record of temperatures and precipitation measurements for the contiguous 48 states.

Source: National Climatic Data Center Technical Report No. 98-02 (PDF) NCDC-tr9802-1998-elnino-event

They also said:

“The persistent 1997-1998 El Niño, which lingered into the first half of the year, and the unprecedented warmth of the Indian Ocean contributed to this record warm year,” said NOAA Administrator Dr. D. James Baker

Source: http://www.publicaffairs.noaa.gov/releases99/jan99/noaa99-1.html archived here: 1998-Warmest-Year-on-Record-NOAA-Announces (PDF)

So while no two El Niños are the same, this one in 1998 had quite an effect on global temperatures, calling them “unprecedented”. It seems odd that they’d place the slightly smaller 1998 El Niño event as the cause of record breaking temperatures, but then try to dilute it when an even bigger event comes along in 2015.

In fact, in the press release about 1998, they make no attribution to “climate change” at all. The phrase “Longer-term climate change”, “climate change”, or even any close variation does not appear in the 1999 press release document.

It seems pretty clear then by NOAA’s statements that the El Niño of 97-98 was the biggest factor in record breaking temperatures. Note that in the graph above from Dr. Ryan Maue, we have the “pause” clearly visible until about April of 2015, when global temperature was about 0.1 to 0.3 °C above normal during that period. In 1997, according to this plot from NASA GISS in 2007 where they fixed a bug pointed out by Steve McIntyre, the global temperatures preceding that super El Niño were similar, if not a little higher at almost 0.4°C:

NASA-GISS-2007-global plot

Source: http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/updates/200708.html

So it seems to me that the claims made in the 2016 NOAA analysis such as

“Longer-term climate change was also a player, similar to Alice, the Brady family’s housekeeper—an ever-present force influencing outcomes to varying degrees.”

Really aren’t that strong at all, and the language is far more political, speaking to the perceived “consensus”, than it was in 1999. Meanwhile, neither the Earth nor El Niño cares.

 

 


From climate.gov

Author: Jake Crouch

Marcia, Marcia, Marcia

Is El Niño the Marcia Brady of climate variability? No doubt that El Niño is the sexiest, most popular, and most studied aspect of climate variability. And we do continue to talk about El Niño events decades after they seem relevant, much like Marcia.

Now that the U.S. has just finished its warmest winter on record, we naturally ask ourselves just how influential the strong El Niño was.  But how did other factors in the earth’s climate system contribute to the record-breaking season?  How did Greg and Bobby and Cindy—or even Jan—influence the hit TV show from yesteryear?  Was the success of the show solely due to Marcia, and was our warmest winter on record solely a result of El Niño?

In this Beyond the Data post, we take a closer look at the warmest winter on record and what role El Niño might have played.

No two El Niños are the same, but…

One of the most straightforward tools that climatologists have to examine how a particular climate pattern influences weather is comparing similar events from the past. It has been stated numerous times on this blog and others that no two El Niño events are the same, and that is definitely true for the current El Niño event. Still, we can use the past to identify big picture similarities that many El Niño events have in common.

To help us examine historical trends, we have identified six previous strong El Niño events in the 1950-present historical record: 1957-58, 1965-66, 1972-73, 1982-83, 1991-92, and 1997-98. According to NOAA’s Oceanic Niño Index (ONI), the current El Niño event is one of the strongest on record and of similar magnitude to the events in 1982-83 and 1997-98.

The table below shows the contiguous U.S. temperature during the past six strong El Niño winters (December-February) as well as this past winter.  Winter seasons in the past tended to be close to or warmer than 1981-2010 average when a strong El Niño was present.

image

Average winter temperature in the U.S. for the 6 strongest El Niños since 1950 along with the winter of 2015-16. Colder-than-average winters are shaded blue, and warmer-than-average winters are shaded red. More often than not in the U.S., strong El Niño winters have been warmer than average, but that’s partly because winters overall have warmed. *61st place sits exactly in the middle of the historical record, so it is also the 61st warmest.

As previously reported by NOAA, the winter (December-February) of 2015-16 was the warmest and 12th wettest on record for the contiguous United States. The average temperature was 36.8°F, 3.3°F above the 1981-2010 average, while the precipitation total was 8.05 inches, 1.25 inches above average. As you can see in the graph below, the record warm winter season for the contiguous U.S. was an unprecedented occurrence—with or without an El Niño present.

December-February temperature in the contiguous U.S. compared to the 1981-2010 average for each winter since 1950, with strong El Niño years marked with gray dots.  Earlier El Niño winters were near or below-average, while the four most recent events saw warmer-than-average temperatures. NOAA Climate.gov graph, based on analysis by Jake Crouch, NCEI.

It is clear in the data that winters in the contiguous U.S. have warmed over time. Winters are warming at an average rate of 2.1°F per century since U.S. record keeping began in 1895, and 3.3°F per century since 1950 when our operational El Niño records begin. So, El Niño winters have gotten warmer through time due to climate change, despite no significant strengthening of El Niño events themselves. This warming trend means that the odds of having a record warm winter have increased, much like rolling loaded dice, and the El Niño potentially loaded the dice even slightly more.

A comparison to past El Niño winters

Temperature

During December-February 2015/2016 much of the contiguous U.S. was warmer than the 1981-2010 average, particularly areas across the North and east of the Rockies. Much of the warmth east of the Rockies occurred during the record-smashing heat wave during the last two weeks of December—an example of how a multi-week event can influence seasonal outcomes. Parts of the Mountain West saw temperatures that were near to below average.

Winter temperatures (December 2015-February 2016) compared to the 1981-2010 average. It was the contiguous U.S.’ warmest winter on record. NOAA Climate.gov map based on analysis by Jake Crouch, NCEI.

 

Now compare this winter’s temperature pattern to an average temperature map of the previous six strong El Niño events (below). There isn’t much similarity across the southern half of the contiguous United States. However, there is a similar signal across the northern half of the country, with past strong El Niño events being warmer than average for the region.

Winter temperatures (December-February) compared to the 1981-2010 average during the 6 strongest El Niño events since 1950 (not including the ongoing event). Based on these 6 events, strong El Niño winters are warmer than average across the northern U.S. and cooler than average across the southern U.S. NOAA Climate.gov map based on analysis by Jake Crouch, NCEI.

 

That northern-tier warmth stems from a strong, semi-permanent low pressure system called the Aleutian Low that sets up in the Gulf of Alaska during El Niño events. Downstream from the Aleutian low here in the contiguous U.S., cold air outbreaks from the Arctic tend to occur less frequently.

Precipitation

During December-February 2015-16 parts of the Northwest, Midwest, and along the East Coast, particularly South Florida, were wetter than average while parts of the Rocky Mountains, Southwest, Southern Plains, and Northern Plains were drier than average.

December 2015-February 2016 precipitation compared to the 1981-2010 average. It was wetter than average in the Pacific Northwest and part of the Gulf Coast, and much wetter than average in the Great Plains and southern Florida. NOAA Climate.gov map based on analysis by Jake Crouch, NCEI.

 

When we compare this winter’s precipitation pattern to the average precipitation map of the previous six strong El Niño events, there is not much similarity across the Southwest and Southern Plains. Part of the reason might be the small number of cases examined. With only six strong events observed over 67 years on top of a changing climate base state, we might not fully be able to represent what the signal of a strong El Niño actually looks like. One atypical event could have skewed the entire average.

Winter precipitation (December-February) compared to the 1981-2010 average during the 6 strongest El Niño events since 1950 (not including the ongoing event). Based on these 6 events, strong El Niño winters are wetter than average across the southern U.S. and drier than average in the Northern Plains, the Northern and Southern Rockies, and the Ohio Valley. NOAA Climate.gov map based on analysis by Jake Crouch, NCEI.

Much of California was also drier than average during the winter of 2015/2016, which caused drought conditions to persist into mid-March. California has been dealing with drought going on five years, and many had high hopes that this El Niño would be the state’s savior because past El Niño events tended to be wet for the state. However, the precipitation received in California during the wet season through the end of February made only a minor dent in the multi-year precipitation deficits. However, early reports of heavy precipitation during March look promising!

Station data

How did major cities across the country fare during this winter in terms of average temperature, precipitation, and snowfall? Below are tables that compare what happened during the winter of 2015-16 to the winter seasons during past strong El Niño events. First up is temperature…

image

Average winter temperature for 10 U.S. cities for the 6 strongest El Niños since 1950 along with the winter of 2015-16. Colder-than-average winters are shaded blue, and warmer-than-average winters are shaded red.

And here is total winter precipitation…

image

Total winter precipitation for 10 U.S. cities for the 6 strongest El Niños since 1950 along with the winter of 2015-16. Wetter-than-average winters are shaded blue-green, and drier-than-average winters are shaded tan.

Finally, here is snowfall during strong El Niño winters…

image

Total winter snowfall in inches for 10 U.S. cities for the 6 strongest El Niños since 1950 along with the winter of 2015-16. Winters with more than average snow are shaded light blue-green, and winters with less than average snow are shaded light tan. Remember earlier when I talked about how if we only have 6 events to consider, one atypical year could skew the signal? Houston is a good example: 2 years with missing data, 4 years with no snow, and one year with close to 5 inches. Yes, that comes out above average mathemtically, but you can’t really call it a pattern of snowier than average winters during strong El Niños. (*A previous blog explained some of the unique challenges of compiling historical snow data.)

Episode recap

Was El Niño solely responsible for the record warm winter for the contiguous United States? No, but for some areas, like the northern U.S., the El Niño likely played a role. We know that other factors including climate patterns in the north Atlantic, Pacific, and tropics also influenced our weather during winter. Longer-term climate change was also a player, similar to Alice, the Brady family’s housekeeper—an ever-present force influencing outcomes to varying degrees.

But exactly how much of the record warm winter was due to the El Niño, and how much was due to other climate patterns, including climate change? That is a question yet to be answered, but the answer—like most climate extremes—is likely some version of “all of the above.”

When trying to determine how a strong El Niño impacted winter seasonal outcomes across the contiguous U.S., we might be easily lulled into false expectations. Just like Jan’s complaint that no one could keep their eyes off Marcia, we often can’t keep our eyes off El Niño. Yes, El Niño events have well documented historical impacts in the U.S., but there are always other players involved, just like other members of the Brady family influenced an episode’s outcome.

Our climate is changing and our assumptions of how El Niño will impact the U.S. might need to be revisited. But we also need to understand that there is variability even within well-understood climate patterns like El Niño, and we must keep an open mind when it comes to the impacts of less exciting climate patterns.

Was Marcia ever really going to be a teen model, and was this El Niño ever going to manifest itself in the way we expected? Probably not.  To truly understand the beauty of the Brady family, we must look beyond the obvious choice.

153 thoughts on “NOAA declares current El Niño stronger than 1997-98 event, then says record warm temperatures have little to do with it

      • I can’t say I recall Obama ever saying that the Arctic would be ice-free by now.

        Tsk, tsk, pesky facts..

      • Yes it was Al Gore saying that the Arctic would be ice free in 5 years. That was in 2008 I think. Come 2016, plenty of ice in the arctic, or is that rotten ice?

      • “Yes it was Al Gore saying that the Arctic would be ice free in 5 years. That was in 2008 I think. Come 2016, plenty of ice in the arctic, or is that rotten ice?”

        That is incorrect. Gore quoted from 2 research papers during a talk he gave. One of them predicted 2013 or 2014, the other predicted as early as 2022, but more likely 2027.

      • Yea yea. Gore will be dead before we can say his facts were incorrect. What an inconvenient truth.

  1. I really do not have a problem with their announcement that El Nino played a part, and Climate Change too. I am a firm believer in Climate Change and that it is occurring all the time. I just don’t think man has much effect on Climate Change.

    We know, on average, the U.S. is getting warmer. We know it goes through small, medium, and large cycles. If the a cycle (or several cycle) peaks line up with an El Nino, one would EXPECT record temperatures – because its getting, on average, a little warmer every year.

    Each El Nino, just like weather patterns, is going to be a little different. Sure there are similarities, but there should be differences too – otherwise it would not be chaotic and easy to model. Why any of this is a headline is bewildering.

    • ..Yes, that is what happens when you come OUT of an Ice Age..If was continually getting cooler, we would most likely be going INTO an Ice Age ! As a Canadian, I say, Go GloBull Warming !!

      • Marcus, We are NOT coming out of an ice age so that argument does not explain the recent upward trend in temperatures. If anything, the data suggest that temperatures had peaked in this interglacial (see below) and temperatures were SLOWLY (I emphasize slowly to counter those that get get their knickers in a twist about a coming ice age) trending downward. I would rather live in a very slowly cooling world than a rapidly warming one.

      • Luke says “I would rather live in a very slowly cooling world than a rapidly warming one.”

        Wow. Really? So every year in a cooling world, you could expect the earth’s ecosystem to decline a little and you’d rather live under those conditions?

        You’d rather the extreme events were tending towards cold ones than warm ones?

      • Luke: “We are NOT coming out of an ice age”

        YES WE ARE!

        “I would rather live in a very slowly cooling world than a rapidly warming one.”

        Be careful what you wish for.

        In any case, the World is not rapidly warming.

      • Oh, and by the way Luke, I presume you are aware that Marcott himself has debunked that Hokey Schtick you seem to be obsessed with, right?

      • “Oh, and by the way Luke, I presume you are aware that Marcott himself has debunked that Hokey Schtick you seem to be obsessed with, right?”

        Not to mention the temporal resolution of Marcott’s Stew, wouldn’t even show a spike that shows at the end. It’s a Climate Smoothie.

      • I rarely ( if ever ) say something negative about anyone, but Luke needs to see a doctor. Saying he would prefer to live on a cooling planet is a very negative outlook on life in general. As it is, even in today’s climate the people ( and their live stocks and no time to grow fodder, think Mongolia), that have to live in colder conditions are way worse of then those that do not. Luke honestly, remember in a cooling climate we would have to use even more of the evil fossil fuel your warmist’s side always scream about. A doctor Luke , see a doctor. ( because Luke you are an A.., there you are my negative bad words.).

      • catweazle666
        You say that the temperatures have been increasing because we are coming out of an ice age. I provided a figure showing that temperatures during this interglacial peaked about 7,000 years ago and were on a slow decline. Where are the data to support your assertion?
        You went on to say the world is not rapidly warming, again where are the data? Temps were declining by about 0.01 C/century for the last 7,000 years until about 100 years ago. In the past 50 years, global temperatures have been increasing at about 1.5 C/century- a 100 fold difference in the rate of change.

      • Luke, the earth is STILL in an ICE AGE, right now. You can even google it if you like. The earth just happens to be in a rather comfortable INTER-GLACIAL…which is coming to an end. Maybe not in my lifetime, or yours, or your grandchildrens, but it is coming to an end as earth heads towards the next glaciation period. So, maybe your future family will get to live in a world you wish, a frozen world.

        The ignorance is strong in this one!

      • Luke
        That graph from Marcott and Mann is a hockey stick offshoot and was created in an effort to further bolster the elimination of the MWP and has been refuted numerous times. The span from 1100 to 700 years ago was estimated to be 1-2C above today and the Roman Warm Period about 2000 years ago was even warmer still but BOTH time periods were warmer than today

      • That graph is just plain silly. It tacks on yearly temperatures to a line that is using far longer time scales scales. I hesitate to call it fraud but it is getting there. It’s like having say an ice cube at zero, heating it to 100 degrees then freezing it again. On one scale the ice cube never changes, on another it goes through massive changes.

        Comparing the two scales is entirely meaningless.

      • Patrick MJD;

        The earth just happens to be in a rather comfortable INTER-GLACIAL…

        Our current INTER-GLACIAL is the coolest INTER-GLACIAL over the past 400,000 years …. and also has the highest CO2 levels ….

        …. go figure?

      • Patrick,
        You’re right, I should have specified that we are in an interglacial period within a general pattern of cycles between ice ages and interglacials. The point I was making is that I would rather live in a world cooling at 0.02 degrees C per century- it would be thousands of years before there would be significant changes in global temperatures (assuming that the rate of change remained constant). Right now the temperature is increasing at 1.5 C per century, we will be living in a very different world in just 100 years including large increases in sea level, shifts in temperature and precip that will have major consequences for agriculture, and increases in droughts. Why do you think the Pentagon has identified climate change as a major driver of instability and conflict in the coming century (and please don’t give me the answer that they are doing it at the behest of the Obama administration- unless you can prove it)?

      • Luke, you continue to post Marcott’s debunked reconstruction. Surely, you can realize that that graph will not win you any converts.

        When one tacks an unsmoothed section onto the end of a heavily smoothed prior section, surely you can see that the result is statistical gibberish. It means nothing. Everyone here can see that, and you are simply exposing your ignorance by not acknowledging the problem.

        The real question which ought to interest you is why Marcott’s reconstruction was accepted by peer review and endlessly lauded by the media, DESPITE being obvious statistical gibberish.

      • Luke: “Right now the temperature is increasing at 1.5 C per century”

        No it isn’t.

        #Data from Hadley Centre
        #http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/hadobs/hadcrut4/data/download.html
        #—————————————————-
        #File: hadcrut4_monthly_ns_avg.txt
        #
        #Time series (hadcrut4) from 1850 to 2015.42
        #Least squares trend line; slope = 0.00482829 per year
        1850 -0.509351
        2015.42 0.289329
        #Data ends
        #Number of samples: 2
        #Mean: -0.110011

        http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/plot/hadcrut4gl/trend:2001

        See that line that says Least squares trend line; slope = 0.00482829 per year?

        That gives 0.482829°C per century.

        Or would you prefer NASA GISS?

        #Data from NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
        #http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/
        #—————————————————-
        #
        #File: GLB.Ts+dSST.txt
        #
        #Time series (gistemp) from 1880 to 2016.17
        #Least squares trend line; slope = 0.00687911 per year
        1880 -0.444523
        2016.17 0.492183
        #Data ends
        #Number of samples: 2
        #Mean: 0.0238301

        That gives 0.687911°C per century.

        Still not even close to 1.5°C per century.

        Stop making stuff up, you are just making a fool of yourself.

    • Looks like Luke got into his mom and dad’s adult medications then got on the internet.

      kamikazedave
      March 18, 2016 at 1:12 pm

      Looks like NOAA is in serious need for grant money.

      Luke: it’s fake: the 20th century didn’t warm.

      And Yes Luke there was a little ice age in an otherwise warm, but slowly cooling period.

      And no you do not want the temperature to continue to drift to cool, it precipitously drops off into glaciation.

      And no, using fire can not make the sky hot.
      No matter how hard you squeeze your eyes shut and visualize the Education Department Flag flying over some building,

      the atmosphere stops many percent sunlight from reaching the surface of the planet.
      It then scrubs that heat off with freezing water and frigid winds,
      to emit that
      reduced density surface energy
      from an overall
      larger, colder, combined mass.

      That’s the definition of cooling.

      No matter how hard you hold your breath till the world doesn’t make sense to you,

      that’s not a giant, magical heater in the sky.

      That’s the definition of
      less energy
      emitting from more, cooler, overall mass.

      Here’s an experiment so you can find out for yourself.

      Write down the words ”Less surface energy density emitted from an overall larger, colder, combined mass”

      then shut your eyes very tight, and then open them –
      when you do,
      shout ”A Magic Heater!! A Magic Heater!! A Magic Heater!!”

      When that’s not the definition of cooling any more,
      you can be a government certified climatologist.

      Just like Mike ”So what if it always makes hockey sticks?” Mann
      Just like Phil ”The scientific community would come down on me in no uncertain terms if I said the world cooled since 1998. Ok it has but it’s only seven years of data and it isn’t statistically significant, ” Jones
      Just like James “I’m going to work in a rowboat because we’re going to be under water!” Hansen
      Just like Keith ”These six shaggy bark trees, notorious for unreliability regarding temp, said the sky is getting hot. Right now. Really,” Briffa.

      You will have finally broken the secret of atmospheric processing those hockey sticks couldn’t.

      And you alone among all humanity’s
      great mathematical minds,
      fanatical eco-fascist activists,
      avid amateurs and retired atmospheric chemists/radiation professionals,
      students hoping to get that big PhD break,
      bored housewives looking for fame but not being personally acquainted with Hulk Hogan –

      You – and you alone among all these human intellects,

      will be able to explain to real scientists,
      who haven’t been caught faking data
      and lying to the press a dozen years,
      and making kook class end of the world statements,
      about heating supplies being death trains to Auschwitz and going to work in a rowboat,

      how less surface energy
      emitted from more, colder, combined total mass
      is a magic heater in the sky.

      If you’d like to, you can record and put the process leading to the momentous occasion on YouTube.

      We’ll wait,
      you go get that big proof
      that’s gonna throw us all back on our thermodynamic heels,
      and change our story. And admit – your leadership aren’t kooks who fake having been given Nobel Prizes
      in court documents when they’re suing people for calling them liars

      and that stuff all makes perfect sense about the laws of thermodynamics turning around,
      and us not really being on cue for glaciation,
      but the sky getting too hot because we used fire.

      And how if we use other fire the sky won’t get hot.

      LoL

      Remember we’re talking about y o u r story Luke.

      Any time you want to clear it all up, people have been looking for a good ”communicator of the science” ever since Death Train Homer Hansen, got in his rowboat and went off down the street in Manhatten the day he retired.

    • Always have been and always will be. As such necessitates the continual state of alarm…. gotta have $$$.

  2. I do not believe and will not believe anything this agency make up anymore ,they have shown too many times to be very loose with the truth .
    Wasn’t it 2014 warmest evvvva with 37 percent confidence level what a joke .

    • You have a way with words. The phrase “this agency make up anymore” is beautiful.

      But it isn’t a joke, when madness effects the minds of hapless and pathetic people. As we live midst a time when the antics of the climate (likely due to the “Quiet Sun”) are particularly fascinating, they must studiously ignore the most fascinating aspects, because it would be politically incorrect. Therefore I have to grit my teeth to read any NOAA papers, for they resemble blathering.

  3. “… It seems odd that they’d place the slightly smaller 1998 El Niño event as the cause of record breaking temperatures, but then try to dilute it when an even bigger event comes along in 2015. …”

    It does not seem odd to me. The people we are discussing have little or no concern for the truth. When they are not cooking the books adjusting the temperature data by cooling the past and warming the future (you should see their neat time machine!) they are calling every weather event imaginable a sure sign that CO2 is going to destroy the planet.

    Even Chicken Little was a more reliable source of information.

  4. Let’s look at the El Nino weather impact maps.

    Pretty accurate compared to what happened over the last 90 days don’t you think.

    Let’s also look at the Out-going Long-wave Radiation map which gives you an indication where it was more cloudy [Blues and Reds] (and hence more precipitation) versus less cloudy [Brown and Yellows] (and hence less precipitation). Again, pretty accurate.

    The big Red Spot in the middle of the Pacific is really what makes the Earth warmer in an El Nino. All these thunderstorm clouds hold the extra heat from the central Pacific in. The heat from the El Nino does not get to escape to space, the clouds hold the heat in. It takes time for these thunderstorms to develop and then time for the general atmospheric circulation patterns to spread the extra heat around to the warmer than normal areas in the rest of the planet. This is actually the reason for the 3 month lag as well. The El Nino peaked in mid-November but the temperature impact did not peak until mid-February.

    Incidentally, the Big Red Spot, at lower than normal OLR of 50 W/m2 is an astounding difference from normal (especially over 90 days). Nowhere else on the planet has numbers anything like this. 50 W/m2 should be compared to the forcing from doubling CO2 of just 3.7 W/m2 so a -50 W/m2 over such a big area is a big deal. This is how an El Nino impacts the weather.

    • Hi Bill, Looking at the red area, how much of the drop in OLR is due to the fact that there is less ISR reaching the surface due to increased albedo from the clouds ?. It would be useful to overlay OSW to gain a full picture.

      • You are right Dan. The extra cloudiness also reduces solar radiation reaching the surface, allowing the El Niño waters to cool down faster than they would have otherwise. The reduction in solar radiation is on the order of 50 W/m2 as well.

        But this water is 3.0C above normal before the clouds help cool it off. The ocean already held lots an extra energy in it. As it cools off and releases that energy to the atmosphere and the extra clouds hold more of it in than normal, it translates into a big dump of energy to the atmosphere.

        But the clouds do help in making an El Niño more like a spike in ocean temps. Nino 3.4 has cooled from 3.1C to 1.8C just 3 months later. The niño charts are spike-like due to the clouds build-up (lack of cloud build-up in a La Niña) partly because of solar radiation differences.

    • Very interesting.

      The map seems to show a lot of heat escaping from the Pole this winter, which was obvious if you watched the maps up there. The El Nino mildness almost seemed to get sucked north into a whirlpool over the Pole, (which I saw as our planet squandering its extra warmth).

      As bulges of Atlantic mildness prodded the Pole, it seemed to nudge the cold ordinarily up there south, resulting in cold-weather-events further south. Turkey got amazing amounts of snow, Mongolia suffered a “dzud”, the army of Thailand handed out blankets to villagers, Bangladesh had many children hospitalized with cold-related ailments, Saudi Arabia had unrepresented snows, Kuwait had its first snow ever, and so on. (It should be obvious I lurk at the “Ice Age Now” site.)

      But one thing your map does not explain to me is all the snow they had down in Mexico. It really has been a wonder (especially if you are Mexican.) I haven’t been able to find a decent explanation, (or even an attempt to study), how that cold got down there.

      Considering all the money forked out to them, you’d think NOAA could study such things, but at times I feel they can’t even see the nose on their own faces.

  5. NOAA was telling the truth. The high temperatures were caused not by El Nino but adjustments to the data, urban heat island effect, poor station siting, and homogenized data.

    • Just like RSS v4.0 then.

      And remember:

      “It’s the best data we have” (J Curry – Senate hearing).

      • Marcus, historically the satellite data has been changing faster than the surface data. It’s got a long history of being adjusted — and of being hard to correctly calibrate, for that matter.

        It’s tough when you’ve only got 1, maybe 2 satellites measuring at a time, each of which has their own constantly-changing calibration issues.

      • It is still “raw” data it’s just that the interpretation of it has altered – via an algorithm
        AKA a Model.

        If you disagree would you care to explain how RSS and UAH arrive at “the best data we have”.

      • Maybe you should inspect Mears spurious adjustments again. Why is it that NOAA 14 MSU, having the rough calibration and the greatest drift, get equal billing in the mix with NOAA 15 AMSU? Mears has equalled Karl in providing the public a garbage paper with garbage results. Curry will not be accepting Mears recent adjustments.

      • It was in response to this Paragraph:

        “So while no two El Niños are the same, this one in 1998 had quite an effect on global temperatures, calling them “unprecedented”. It seems odd that they’d place the slightly smaller 1998 El Niño event as the cause of record breaking temperatures, but then try to dilute it when an even bigger event comes along in 2015.”

        Through that was clear ;)

      • Dear der Wagen

        When I see this linear fit, I always think about acceleration which is so clearly visible.

    • Exactly:

      And Marcus would you care to crayon a graph that shows that ENSO (whether Nina or Nino) is not following a rising trend of temps that underlie, and so prove that somehow continued warming is somehow magically cause solely by the ENSO cycle..

      • …What part of ” Coming out of the Little Ice Age ” do you not understand ? Did you think it would get colder ?

      • He?

        We should be going slowly (10000s of years stuff to leave an inter-glacial), but we are going in smth else (few 100s of years of forcings changing reality in the opposite direction to unknown end effect).

        Wow! Thanks

      • …Wow Wagen, that must be good stuff you are smoking, you almost made sense with that reply !…. D’oh !

      • Marcus:

        What part in the Milankovitch cycle do you think we are at in your “coming out of an IA nonsense!

        I do take it you do understand how IA’s are driven by orbital eccentricity ?

        Here is a graph showing our current position….

        TSI of ~480W/m^2 at 65deg N

        Whereas at the peak of the Holocene we were at ~530 W/m^2

        So the “coming out” was prior to that. – At around 25,000 ya when TSi at 65N was @465W/m^2 and rising.

      • So below ~500 watts/sm is getting colder, above is getting warmer. We’ve been cooling since a peak at around 10 Ky bp, with probably a 1-2 Ky lag due to ocean thermal inertia. That coincides nicely with the HTO at 8 Ky bp.

        The first derivative of that graph of 65N insolation says we should be moderating for the next 3Ky, but still slightly cooling (below 500 but rising) till 4-5Ky forward from today. It’s nice to know man’s anthro CO2 contribution to the biosphere may help us through this difficult period with enhanced biosphere photosynthetic output (food), enhanced hydrologic cycling, and reduced warming needs of our buildinds, offices, factories, and homes.

      • “We’ve been cooling since a peak at around 10 Ky bp, with probably a 1-2 Ky lag due to ocean thermal inertia. That coincides nicely with the HTO at 8 Ky bp.”

        Exactly – so we are not coming out of an IA, “Little” or not.

        Just another “sceptic” myth.

      • So what was the warming from 1850 to 1950, and the cooling from 1950 to 1980 caused from?

      • Toneb March 18, 2016 at 3:22 pm

        Such Hubris, that you think that the graph you have presented actually represents the world from up to 120,000 years ago, complete with the actual insolation at that time.
        It is a Guess, an Estimate, but it is not reality.
        Climate Science cannot even identify the cause of the pause, let alone what happened 1000s of years ago.

  6. The boyz and girlz of NOAA Boulder are enjoying a fine Friday at the end of this Winter 2015-2016.

    As I write this, the local weather in Boulder is 28F (- 2 C) and light snow. They have about 12″ of fresh wet snow on the ground from the last 24 hrs.

    Here is the current snowfall accumulation (in inches) from the 17-18 March storm:

    I mention this with wee bit ‘o schadenfreude… I’m sitting on my patio in Tucson at a nice sunny 82 F, while NOAA prattles on about an El Nino warmed winter. I haven’t used my house HVAC since early February, lovin’ it.

    • Well splendid:

      So Boulder at an altitude of ~5,500ft has a temp of -2C and some snow in March.

      Would you credit it?

      • No. Warm winter proclamations from NOAA usually get reality check from nature to remind folks its always just weather what we actually experience, not climate. It’s somewhat akin to the Gore Effect. The boyz and girlz at NCEI are going to have wet and cold start to spring, while upper New England gets snow and ice. (I lived in eastern Mass for 9 years, any snow after 15 March really sucked because it was wet and very heavy to shovel.)

        But I did get the “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia” dark humor because we now know what another Brady Bunch cast member (played as Greg) was doing to the actress (played as Marcia) off set in his wardrobe trailer between sound stage shoots.

      • Sub-zero temps and snow at 5,500ft in the Rockies in March is entirely normal – El Nino or not.

      • Thank you for admitting that. Which is my point. Its normal. Not exceptional, even with an El Nino imposed on our current weather, everything we are experiencing is “normal”. NOAA has a pathological need to politicize their message under the watchful eye of their political appointtee masters. Sad.

  7. Global warming provides the underlying trend that’s boosting temperatures. But El Nino / La Nina is the biggest source of year-to-year variability in temperature.

    Most record hot years are El Nino years for that reason. But they keep getting hotter and hotter, because of global warming. Overall, a pretty simple concept.

    So what NOAA said is true: El Nino is not solely responsible for the record warming. But it played a role.

      • Nah, it’s pretty much what they just directly said; what climate scientists usually say.

        Crazy idea, but there’s more than one thing that affects climate. And even more things that affect weather. =)

    • So this is a fact? You can tell us all what is the contribution made by warming factors in our eco system. Allez-y.

  8. ” Yale’s climate change program out of gas
    Published March 02, 2016 FoxNews.com
    Facebook85 Twitter116 livefyre158 Email Print
    Yale is closing its Climate & Energy Institute.

    Yale is closing its Climate & Energy Institute.

    After years of feeling the heat, Yale’s Climate & Energy Institute is finally facing an inconvenient truth: the program will close at the end of June.”

    Sweet music to my ears !

    http://www.foxnews.com/science/2016/03/02/yales-climate-change-program-out-gas.html?intcmp=hpbt2

  9. So now Climate Science is deriving it’s fundamental understandings of primary climate motivating forces from a prehistoric (pre-internet) television comedy show.
    Unfortunately, it makes a certain amount of sense when you think about it.
    At least we now know that it was the Brady Bunch all along, and CO2 has nothing to do with it, as we have long maintained.

    • It’s all part of Schmidt’s “less science more propaganda” plan, paraphrasing Schmidt “texans are dumb and bigots” and I guess NOAA are rolling out this tactic nationally

  10. So, are you going the bob tisdale argument? Yes, we get warmer, but has nothing to with CO2, it’ only El Ninos? Really?

    • Hmmmm. Land only temps for 2015. Northern Hemisphere for Jan\Feb 2016.

      Clearly NOAA are trying to separate the temperature increases for El Nino in order to attribute them to CAGW

      I find it cute how you believe every word from the US Gov, they are as honest as the Nigerian Gov.

      When politics decides something is real, politically appointed scientists like Karla nd Schmidt, will provide whatever they are asked for, and have, at the cost of NASA’s reputation.

      NASA have a history of lying, they lied about the Columbia shuttle in order to get more funding, and it cost lives, they lied about the craft’s condition, and it cost the lives of several astronauts.

  11. The record since 1950 is actually much too short to establish a truly secular trend in the presence of strong, albeit irregular, multidecadal and longer oscillations What is apparent on a shorter-term basis is that the winter (Dec-Feb) anomalies have recovered from a decline to a deep trough in 1979 and have been holding relatively steady thereafter.

      • Actually Marcus, he is calculating the forest’s size by examining one large tree. IMHO, when the satellite era is 200 years old scientists will have long recognised that climate change is a symphony of cosmic and terrestrial interactions playing in rhythm while this star system traverses the galaxy.
        Small minds can only conceive the process as a solo instrument improvisation whose accompaniment dutifully struggles to maintain harmony and follow the meter changes. They pitifully never are able to cycle of the verse and refrain, dwelling on the tension and ignoring the repose.

      • Sorry, that should be “They pitifully never are able to get the cycle of the verse and refrain, dwelling on the tension and ignoring the repose.”

    • You don’t see a pause because you have little difficulty accepting lacluster papers; Karl et al 2015, and Mears recent dogs lunch. If you held your intellect to a higher standard you would be singing a different tune. But please go ahead and let’s get into it. Why don’t you defend Carl and Karl

    • I’ll try to make it as SIMPLE as I can for you.

      suppose you are listening to some monks droning a monotone… (the plateau)

      then someone hits a gong.. (the El Nino spike)

      The droning will be inaudible while the gong is ringing…

      .. but the droning is still there.

      Is that a simple enough concept for you to grasp ?

  12. When the US is cold, it doesn’t mean anything because “the US is only 2 percent of the entire globe.” When the US is warm, it is an indicator of global climate.

  13. “NOAA declares current El Niño stronger”

    It’s a blog post that comes with this disclaimer:
    “Disclaimer:
    Beyond the Data is written and edited by Derek Arndt and Jake Crouch (NOAA NCEI), Jessica Blunden (contractor to NCEI), and Rebecca Lindsey (contractor to NOAA CPO). Posts reflect the views of the bloggers or guest contributors themselves, not necessarily those of Climate.gov, NOAA, or NCEI. “

  14. Without the warming since the end of WWII, would the 1997-1998 and 2015-2016 El Ninos have pushed the temperatures above the ca. 1944 local maximum? From the graphs, the NOAA summary that BOTH the global warming AND the 2015-2016 El Nino produced the recent (local?) maximum is quite reasonable.

  15. NOAA can bask in the warmth of this “son”
    ‘Til this baby boy leaves and his new sister comes.
    When the ice caps have grown, they’ll use that to moan
    “Look now at what CO2’s done!

  16. ‘It seems odd that they’d place the slightly smaller 1998 El Niño event as the cause of record breaking temperatures…’

    Except that they don’t. Here is the quote from the NOAA news release about the 1997-1998 El Nino:

    ‘“The persistent 1997-1998 El Niño, which lingered into the first half of the year, and the unprecedented warmth of the Indian Ocean contributed to this record warm year,” said NOAA Administrator Dr. D. James Baker.’

    The relevant phrase there is ‘contributed to’. This not the same as ‘the cause’.

    This understanding is supported by a couple of comments in the pdf about the 1997-1998 El Nino:

    ‘“This year, the strong El Nino on top of the continuing gradual increase of temperature and precipitation set the stage for many all-time state records.”

    And: ‘“With the newest figures, the long-term trend of increasing temperatures and precipitation in the United States continues.”’

    The relevant phrases here are: ‘continuing gradual increase of temperature’, and ‘long-term trend of increasing temperatures’.

    That is, in their report on the 1997-1998 El Nino, NOAA set the record-breaking temperature within the context of the longer-term rise in temperatures.

  17. 1. Why there was abnormal low – drop by more than 8 oF in 1979 in contiguous US compared to 1981-2010? We are talking on warming but least perturbed with cooling. What was the condition in contiguous US in 1979?

    2. If we look at figures of temperature anomalies for Dec 2015 – Feb 2016 and in strong El Nino years, El Nino effect is random in nature except in the case of northwest [warm] and southwest [cold] – may be due to location & time of start of El Nino and general circulation patterns like frontal system? Low rainfall was observed in colder regions and high rainfall [snowfall] in warmer parts in 2015-16 winters but it is seen in reverse order with respect to all strong El Nino years’ average.

    3. In the case of station temperature precipitation, station data represents urban areas only. With the growth of the urban sprawl, the temperatures should steadily rise irrespective of El Nino or not. This is clearly seen from the table. However, in 1957-58, the year when the unit of measurement changed from oF to oC, showed abnormal high temperatures with high rainfall/snowfall in the case of San Francisco, Denvar, Chicago.

    To understand these extremes, there is a need to study the conditions prevailing at that time. Average over contiguous US provide ambiguous inferences.

    Dr. S. Jeevananda Reddy

  18. “A record number of Americans believe global warming will pose a threat to their way of life, new polling data shows, amid strengthening public acceptance that rising temperatures are being driven by human activity.”

    “The results show a solidifying belief that changes in the climate are under way, with 59% of people thinking so. A record 65% of Americans said global warming was down to greenhouse gases released by human activity – a 10% leap on last year.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/mar/18/climate-change-record-concern-us-global-warming-poll

    • That article is 100% projection and spin by Michael Mann and the guardian. Perusing the comments I found this one https://profile.theguardian.com/user/id/15153921, – typical of the radical alarmist viewpoint:

      “…Climate change deniers need to go to prison and stay there for the rest of their lives without possibility of parole and without access to their businesses which robbed every human in existence and in the future of a healthy life or/and life itself. Their crimes against humanity are monstrous. Public shaming needs to be a part of this, so we do not forget the ease with which humans can fool themselves. Shame is a useful emotion.”

  19. The CAGW proponents are proud of their CO2/temperature statistical correlations; however, when Mother Nature jumps into the picture, their agenda certainly prevails causing the math to fly out the window.

  20. At the height of net discharge, we would continue to see El Nino’s predominate. However, net discharge is a sign of oceanic depletion. While normal, it is not a good thing for continued prosperity. Eventually the oceans will discharge to the point that there is no more to give, skies will clear, winds pick up, and we get very very cold.

  21. Who are the clowns at NOAA producing weather mania garbage ? Don’t delete your E mail records
    NOAA spin doctors .

  22. I think the relevant analogy here is electricity, that is voltage, current, and power delivered.

    NOAA’s declaration is the equivalent of comparing a high voltage lower current source to a slightly lower voltage but higher current source EMF.

    The lower voltage but higher current source is the 97-98 El Nino, which delivered much more (heat) energy to the climate system, than the today’s El Nino is capable of, even though it is slightly higher in voltage (temp).

  23. A touch of humour for those not saddled with the advantage of being American.

    Who the F*** is Alice????

    Statements like this from NOAA confirm that ‘climate change’ is a political ideology directed at the population of the country in Question.
    The Brady’s will not be recognised as a reference in any culture that faces any detrimental effect from ‘climate change’. It is produced not from an internationally renown agency but a hick regional meteorological monitoring team.

    Now awaiting UKMO to reference Edna Miller against gloomy weather…

  24. I used the Excel correlation tool (in ‘data analysis’) to look at the UAH data over the period of Ryan Maue’s chart of global versus tropical temperature (Aug 2014 – Feb 2016).

    The correlation between global and tropical heat is strong in the UAH data (0.83), but not quite as strong as the correlation between global and ‘NoExt’ data (0.85).

    UAH defines ‘NoExt’ as the region 20N-90N; roughly from the Tropic of Cancer to the North Pole.

  25. Masterful ownage of an entrenched thermo-billy who would deny his own children if he thought it made him some friends in Lah-Lah land.

    The factual denial of reality by these people is something that has to be witnessed to be realized and properly processed.

    His high priesthood admitted: in 2005 – ”I’m faking these records and I’ll be damned if I’ll let the scientific world find out.” (The scientific community would come down on me in no uncertain terms, if I said the world cooled since 1998. Ok it has but it’s only seven years of data and it isn’t statistically significant. Oh this Aussie told me about a new thing called blogging! – Phil Jones to Michael Mann)

    Then in 2009 – the entire hack bunch seen discussing how to fake press releases swearing it never stopped warming. Jones, Mann, Trenberth, Hansen and Schmidt’s names right there on the emails iirc.

    Then in 2010: Jones melting down and confessing in his BBC Feb 2010 interview: ”I’ve been faking this warming for TWELVE YEARS. It hasn’t warmed a WHIT. Matter of fact it’s gotten a little COLDER”.

    Just like he said to Mann
    seven years earlier in 2005.

    2013: Met Office that suspended and demoted Jones, the world’s # 1 ”climatologist”
    puts out a press release of it’s own.

    ”The Recent Pause In Warming” where they go on at length about how – they’ve written three papers explaining the ”15 year pause in global warming beginning in 1998.” Their words.
    Their words.

    joelobryan
    March 18, 2016 at 6:53 pm

    Thank you for admitting that. Which is my point. Its normal. Not exceptional, even with an El Nino imposed on our current weather, everything we are experiencing is “normal”. NOAA has a pathological need to politicize their message under the watchful eye of their political appointtee masters. Sad.

    ToneDef scoops that s*** up like it’s ambrosia, snorting it and rubbing it all over himself like it’s some rich spice,
    to be involved with such shamelessly faked pseudo-science.

    ”A rock, warmed by a fire,
    immersed 70+% in frigid oceanic basins of chilled-to-liquid water,
    the exposed part whipped by winds many degrees colder,
    is being made hotter by said washings
    than if the sun warmed rock, got more sunlight energy warming it,
    and wasn’t immersed 70% in freezing cold water,
    being whipped by frigid, turbulent, thermally conductive gas.”

    This is ”science” to believers in ”using fire will make the sky get hot.”

    So – Al Gore made up some certificates so you can pay him,
    to
    atone for using fire to make the sky get hot.

    This is ”science” to an entire class of authority worshippers. Why is it science?

    Cause a whole bunch of people said so. And they said I better buy their products or the world might end.

    It would be funny if it weren’t so morally repugnant.

  26. While there is low pressure sitting in the NE corner of the Pacific, then the climate in North America will not slide towards cooling. Its when there is a increasing amount of high pressure turning up there, is when you need to worry. Here in europe we don’t need to worry if the North America climate turns cooler as long as there is not increasing amounts of high pressure forming between Greenland and NE europe.

    • On the other hand, every Ice Age, Europe froze while Russia remained with very little glaciation at all. A mile of ice over Canada each and every time and none in Russia: that is the riddle. As I keep saying, we have to watch Hudson Bay to see if there really is any warming or cooling going on. Not even the Arctic Ocean reveals this, during every Ice Age, there was no glaciation outside of the mountains in Alaska, either.

      • emsnews
        Climate cooling in North America will be caused by the jet stream pushing south across America in increasing amounts.When this happens the jet rebounds northwards across the Atlantic and so bringing warm air from the mid Atlantic up towards europe. This is what happened in the winters of 2013/14 and 2014/15. To stop this from happening there needs to be highs sitting around the Greenland/northern europe area. The warm blob in the northern Atlantic during the ice age suggests that this is just what happened.

  27. NOAA would never show the public a graph like this that clearly demonstrates global temperature tracks the tropical temperature increase from the 2015-2016 ENSO event very, very, well

    NOAA has often mentioned that el Ninos bring warmer global temps. It’s common knowledge.

    They even have posted graphs showing el Nino warm spikes.


    https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/2015/10/supplemental/page-3

    So have GISS.

    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/news/20160120/

    Gavin Schmidt on that page said that 2015 had an “assist” from el Nino. Hardly ignoring the effect.

    All the major climate centres acknowledge that el Ninos bring warm temps. Strange to see it suggested that they do not.

    [Your claim completely fails – none of the graphs you list look like the graph initially referenced in the quote, they don’t compare tropical temperature to global temperature to show the correlation this year, which is what the original graph demonstrates -mod]

    • Eh, maybe NOAA wouldn’t bother to show a graph showing the link between global temperatures and the tropical temperatures during an El Nino. But.. so what? They acknowledge the link between global temperatures and El Nino. Everyone does. That’s the important point.

  28. I disagree, the El Nino shifted the jet stream, and I know I got more tropical warm air this winter @N41,W81, and last winter at -23F was about as cold as I ever remember it getting.

  29. emsnews: ‘And during the strong la Nina which will inevitably happen starting quite soon, they will NOT announce ‘record drop in temperatures’.’

    My post was about the attribution for the recent record high temperatures. The lead article claims that NOAA had attributed the record temperature in 1998 solely to El Nino, when in fact they said that the El Nino ‘contributed’ to the warmth.

    But to address your comment above. Temperatures rise and fall all the time. A ‘‘record drop in temperatures’ is not the same thing as a record low temperature. Whether or not a record drop in temperatures would be noteworthy would depend on the context.

    What NOAA is talking about is record high temperatures, not just record changes in temperature.

    What makes the February 2016 (global) temperature noteworthy was that it was record-breaker in a record-breaking period. So definitely worthy of comment.

  30. Your claim completely fails – none of the graphs you list look like the graph initially referenced in the quote, they don’t compare tropical temperature to global temperature to show the correlation this year

    The point of showing Maue’s chart was to demonstrate that el Nino contributed to warm temps globally (tropics is 34% of the globe). The implication in the article was that NOAA has ignored the role of el Nino in bringing warm temps. But NOAA (and every other temp research institute) have long said that el Ninos bring warm temps globally. They even have charts showing that, as I linked. Every climate institute, and plenty of researchers this year and every time an el Nino comes along mentions el Nino’s global effect on warmth. I could post dozens of articles demonstrating that. From recently, too.

    Why does NOAA need to show a graph exactly like Maue’s when they make the same point in text and in other charts anyway? This is the quote from the OP.

    “It seems blindingly obvious to me (and to Dr. Ryan Maue) that ENSO is the main driver of these warmer and record temperature,”

    Maue’s actual comment was:

    “Easy to see effect of El Nino on global temps by concurrently plotting tropical & global temp anomaly time series”

    Maue showed something uncontroversial. The tropics heat up during an el Nino. Everyone knows that. The climate institutes have nice global graphics of that on their ENSO pages, the red band running across the equator. Maue demonstrated that el Nino contributed to recent warmth. What he didn’t demonstrate or say was that el Nino is the reason for record temps. That would have required an analysis slightly longer than a sentence, and a graph longer than a few months.

    • ” The climate institutes have nice global graphics of that on their ENSO pages, the red band running across the equator. ”
      If the rest of the world doesn’t change, just adding the red stripe raises the entire average.
      Same as just changing the ratio of warm tropical air vs cold Canadian air over the continental US changes the average temp.

      • Exactly. Everyone knows the global effect of el Nino. There’s no controversy.

        [we’ll be sure to remind you of this when the articles in the press appear claiming hottest “whatever time unit” ever due to AGW -mod]

      • If successive el Nino years generally continue to be warmer than previous, then you’re going to have to come up with a different explanation. As that is already the case, how do you explain that?

      • ” If successive el Nino years generally continue to be warmer than previous, then you’re going to have to come up with a different explanation. As that is already the case, how do you explain that?”
        While there’s more than one, the main way is the processing of temperature data.
        And satellite data has the least warming, and the best coverage.

      • All barry is doing is throwing out the smaller El Ninos. That leaves him with the big ones. Then he says, “AHA!! Told ya!”

        Someone get the hook. That guy’s been on stage too long.

      • All barry is doing is throwing out the smaller El Ninos.

        Fiction. All el Ninos years are plotted in a graph I posted above. Why I said successive el Nino years are generally warmer than previous. Put another way, if you plot a trend for all el Nino years only, it goes up. Same for la Nina years etc.

      • And yet… and yet… NONE of the alarming predictions ever made by your side has ever come true. Not a single one. They were all wrong.

        You’re flogging a dead horse, barry. Give it up, it will never respond. Catastrophic AGW is nonsense. And without the ‘catastrophic’, you’ve got nothin’. No one cares when a wild-eyed threat turns into a false alarm.

  31. Haven’t you got the memo? Every rise in temperature is caused by CO2, and any other change is natural.
    In fact they need not the temperature any more, because it has morphed to climate change. Any change in whatever is a proof of climate change and all caused by humans.
    The preindustrial time was a time of paradisian climate that never changed and was always good to humans.
    In Paris they said that 1.5C higher temperature would ruin the world, and now we have that temperature. Do you feel the world is ruined?

    • I’m getting different memos. Maybe the redacted versions of yours.

      “ruin the world”

      Nope, definitely didn’t get that memo.

  32. NOAA have a PDF that shows the evolution of ENSO and US temps over the last few months. it’s not overlaid exactly like Maue’s, but tells the same story. There’s more detailed info, too.

    [so not overlaid exactly the same? Maue’s plot was simultaneous data, not an overlay. US temps but not global temps. Anthony’s point is proven then and you are just engaging in hand waving -mod]

    • Anthony is attributing US temps to el Nino. NOAA graphs tell a similar story – ENSO was a contributing factor. NOAA says so in many statements, including the OP.

      I’ve already posted graphs showing NOAA (and GISS) correlating global warm temps with el Nino events.

      From NOAA’s report on January:

      A strong El Niño that evolved in 2015 continued to impact global weather and temperatures at the beginning of 2016.

      El Nino has been mentioned in conjunction with warm temperatures in every NOAA monthly report since at least last August.

      EG, from the report from September last year:

      With strong El Niño conditions in place, the September global sea surface temperature was 0.81°C (1.46°F) above the 20th century average of 16.2°C (61.1°F)

      So NOAA didn’t make a graph exactly like Maue’s? Big whoop. The message and other chart displays are completely consistent with Maue, who merely pointed out the correlation between tropical el Nino heat and warm global temps. This information is so everyday it’s hard to figure out what the controversy is.

      Unless….

      The blog headline says that NOAA has called this el Nino stronger than 1997/98. But NOAA didn’t say that. They said that recent surface temps – not el Nino – were ‘unprecedented’.

      So what have NOAA actually said about the relative strengths of 97/98 el Nino to current?

      This link provides the most recent discussion from NOAA on that particular point. Bottom line – too close to tell. Best guess, it’s a tie. It’s a good discussion because it mentions uncertainty, as well as the different indices by which el Nino is measured (and they are not all in agreement). That’s good science communication to me. Not taking a strong position if it isn’t warranted.

      Of course, the current el Nino hasn’t finished, so any conclusion would be premature.

      Finally, el Nino (and la Nina) is a strong player in surface temps, but not the only factor, especially regionally.

  33. Canadians wouldn’t agree on those 5 plus temperature readings in northern U.S. this winter.One of their bridges snapped in two pieces from the cold. Plain and simple fact is there were near as many record highs as there were lows this winter, Nothing is above range. The entire planet through the tropics is showing much of the same.

  34. From the OP:

    Note that in the graph above from Dr. Ryan Maue, we have the “pause” clearly visible until about April of 2015, when global temperature was about 0.1 to 0.3 °C above normal during that period. In 1997, according to this plot from NASA GISS in 2007… the global temperatures preceding that super El Niño were similar, if not a little higher at almost 0.4°C:

    Maue’s baseline is 1981-2010. GISS baseline is 1951-2000.

    The anomalies between the two data sets can’t be compared directly. The baseline difference has to be accounted for.

    [sure, but what was the “correct” anomaly temperature in 1997 before the latest round of adjustments? There isn’t one “correct” temperature based on all the different baselines in use, as the baselines are a choice made by the researchers, and that’s one of the problems of climate science as it is presented to the public.- mod]

    • [snip – you didn’t answer the question what is the “correct” anomaly temperature for 1997 -mod]

      • Matching GISS baseline to Maue’s:

        Maue’s baseline (zero value) is based on 1981-2000 average
        GISS average 1981-2000 is 0.41C

        Stated GISS anomaly of 0.4C in the main article becomes -0.01C when matching GISS baseline to Maue’s.

        Amended text [bolded] would be:

        “Note that in the graph above from Dr. Ryan Maue, we have the “pause” clearly visible until about April of 2015, when global temperature was about 0.1 to 0.3 °C above normal during that period. In 1997, according to this plot from NASA GISS in 2007… the global temperatures preceding that super El Niño were a little lower at around -0.01°C:

        Correction noted in the OP affected GISS temps after 2000, so this has no impact on the result.

        [ both Maue’s and GISS are surface temperature. the question you still have not answered is: which one is the correct surface temperature. the answer is, nobody can say for certain because baselines are an arbitrary choice. they way you are doing this suggests GISS as the “correct” temperature which is part of your own bias. but it seems that GISS might be inflated. absolute temperatures with a magnified scale would be a better choice than anomalies because then such arguments become unimportant -mod]

      • GISS was changed to match Maue’s baseline. You have it the wrong way around.

        “Correct” doesn’t matter. There’s no such thing. Baseline choices are made for a number of reasons reasons*. They’re not arbitrary choices. What matters, when comparing anomalies, is that baselines match. It takes a minute to do.

        *GISS, for example, use a 30-year baseline because that is the standard definition of a climate period (which also has non-arbitrary reasons). UAH lengthened their baseline to 30 years a few years back for the same reason. UAH can’t use 1951-1980 as a baseline because their data begins in 1979. There are always reasons for baseline choice. GISS use 1951-1980 baseline because that was the most recent 30-year period when the data set was first constructed. They’ve used it consistently ever since. They also think it’s better to establish a ‘normal’ by avoiding a strong trend in their baseline period. NOAA uses a longer time period (1901-2000) because they prefer to make anomalies relative to 20th century average. HadCRU uses 1961-1990 (30 years) because that is the 30-year period for which they have more data than any other 30-year period. Maue’s baseline choice is different from the data set he elected to use, by the way.

        Data is anomalised to remove seasonal cycle, annual cycle, elevation differences in weather stations etc, in order to better determine underlying trends. Absolute values retain that information, which produce non-climatic artefacts when subject to analysis. When testing to see if a trend is present in subsets of data, you want anomalised information when removing and adding weather stations. Removing a high elevation station won’t suddenly make the results warmer, for example. Anomalising also handles missing information better than absolute temps. If a high elevation station has a few years of data missing, for example, using absolute temps would produce a ‘jump’ in the record for the missing period. This would be especially problematic for regional analysis.

        Roy Spencer and John Christy use anomalies. They, like the other institutes, are using the data to determine trends. Anomalising the data removes or minimises non-climatic artefacts that interfere with their trend analyses.

        Bob Tisdale explains why anomalies are used, and references other explanations in this post he made 2 years ago.

        https://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2014/01/25/why-arent-global-surface-temperature-data-produced-in-absolute-form/

        [You say: (“Correct” doesn’t matter. There’s no such thing.) Yes, and that’s the point. None of them are technically “correct” they are all based on choices by the researchers. -mod]

      • ” Data is anomalised to remove seasonal cycle, annual cycle, elevation differences in weather stations etc, in order to better determine underlying trends. ”
        And by removing this, you throw useful data away, while at the same time the researcher can insert his biases.

        Station data shows it has cooled slightly more at night than it warmed the previous day .

  35. NOAA has become pretty useless other than telling you what the current temperature is, and perhaps forecasting a few days out. If you ask NOAA what the temperature was today a yeart from now, it will already be revised upward by a degree or two.

    • The same argument renders global UAH satellite data useless, too. They’re on their 7th or 8th revision now. Latest adjustments incurred large daily/monthly changes.

      • barry,

        The new talking point is: “Satellite data is no good. Surface stations are the gold standard.”

        You parrot that nonsense even though the same data has been available for decades. But then, you’re just a parrot for the alarmist Narrative, aren’t you?

        Parrots aren’t smart enough to understand, but for those who would like to know, surface stations are so far out of tolerance that they’re essentially worthless:

        The alarmist Narrative wants people to believe that after a 0.7ºC wiggle in global T — over more than a century — that surface station measurements that are out of tolerance by more than 5ºC should be trusted over satellites.

        Climate alarmism is out of gas. Money is the only thing that keeps it going — money, and even stupider, unpaid eco-lemmings who parrot whatever talking points their masters assign them.

      • ” Surface stations are the gold standard.”
        I’m okay with surface stations, if you compare today’s rising temp to tonight’s falling temp overall there is slightly more cooling than warming.
        That makes it impossible for Co2 to be causing anything but at most mild warming.

        Beyond that I don’t care why temps are up.

      • db – seeing as you’re interested in the US temp record, you may know that the difference between mean temp trends for class 1 and class 1-5 stations inclusive is insignificant. They’re virtually identical (because Tmin and Tmax biases in the poorer stations cancel out: cf Fall et al 2011).

        Other skeptics have crunched the raw data for global surface temps.

        https://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2010/03/24/thermal-hammer/

        Jeff Id (Condon) wrote in that article:

        “First the obvious, a skeptic, denialist, anti-science blog published a greater trend than Phil Climategate Jones. What IS up with that?

        ….. Several skeptics will dislike this post. They are wrong, in my humble opinion… the data is the data and the math is the math. We’re stuck with it, and this result. In my opinion, it is a better method.”

        Bob Tisdale took the approach of comparing absolute temps to anomalies. Here are his results, similar to Roman and Jeff Id’s.

        https://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2010/03/23/absolute-land-surface-temperature-dataset/

        In my opinion rational, well-informed skeptics have moved on from debating the temperature records and are plowing the more fertile ground of climate sensitivity estimates.

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