UAH Global Temperature Report: February 2019

Global climate trend since Dec. 1 1978: +0.13 C per decade

February Temperatures (preliminary)

Global composite temp.:  +0.36 C (+0.65 °F) above seasonal average

Northern Hemisphere.: +0.46 C (+0.83 °F) above seasonal average

Southern Hemisphere.: +0.26 C (+0.47 °F) above seasonal average

Tropics.: +0.43 C (+0.77 °F) above seasonal average

January Temperatures (final)

Global composite temp.:  +0.37 C (+0.67 °F) above seasonal average

Northern Hemisphere.: +0.32 C (+0.58 °F) above seasonal average

Southern Hemisphere.: +0.42 C (+0.76 °F) above seasonal average

Tropics.: +0.37 C (+0.67 °F) above seasonal average

Notes on data released March 1, 2019 (v6.0)

February’s globally-averaged, bulk-layer atmospheric temperature anomaly of +0.36°C (+0.65°F) is essentially unchanged from January. 

The NH warmed a bit, but that was counterbalanced by cooling in the SH.  NOAA has declared that the long-awaited El Niño, a warming of tropical Pacific Ocean waters, has officially arrived, though as they had anticipated for several months, the strength of this one is minimal.  Indeed, the month’s tropical satellite temperature anomaly is a weak +0.43°C (+0.77°F), which is only half of February 2016’s major El Niño value of +0.86°C (+1.55°F).

The month’s coldest seasonally-adjusted temperature departure from average is easy to spot on the map: -5.6 °C (-10.1°F) northwest of Edmonton, Alberta – and it’s already winter to begin with there!    As we’ve often seen on these monthly maps, the warmest spot is nearby, just north of Alaska in the Beaufort Sea at +4.5°C (+8.1°F).  When patterns become stationary, the largest departures of opposite sign tend to be close to each other.

The monthly map for February 2019 indicates many other colder than average regions such as North Africa, waters around Hawaii, North Atlantic and several areas in the southern oceans.  On the warm side of things were the North Pacific, eastern US, Europe, Japan and scattered areas in the SH.  The El Niño signature of very warm tropical temperatures is relatively weak this time around.

Spoiler Alert (Repeated until accomplished – no estimate yet):  Well, the time is once again approaching when new changes are required for the currently operating satellites as their performance changes with age.  NOAA-18 has been operating for 13 years and is now past its time frame for accurate diurnal adjustments based on initial drifting, meaning the adjustments are adding spurious warming to the time series.  On the other hand, NOAA-19 has also drifted so far that it too is introducing an error, but given its direction of drift, these errors are of the opposite sign.  

The two satellites are almost compensating for each other, but not to our satisfaction.  In addition, the current non-drifting satellite operated by the Europeans, MetOP-B, has not yet been adjusted or “neutralized” for it’s seasonal peculiarities related to the diurnal cycle.  While these MetOP-B peculiarities do not affect the long-term global trend, they do introduce error within a particular year in specific locations over land.  So, all in all, we anticipate generating new adjustments for NOAA-18 and NOAA-19 to account for their behavior of late and shall also modify MetOP-B to account for it’s unique seasonal cycle. 

This will be part of a coordinated plan to eventually merge NOAA’s new microwave sensor (ATMS) carried on Suomi NPP and the new NOAA series JPSS.  We are hoping that NOAA-19 will be the last spacecraft for which drifting adjustments will be required as the newer satellites (MetOP, NPP, JPSS) have on-board propulsion to keep them in stable orbits. With so many new items to test and then incorporate, we are waiting until we are confident that these adjustments/additions are appropriately stable before moving to the next version.   In the meantime, we shall continue to produce v6.0.

As part of an ongoing joint project between UAH, NOAA and NASA, Christy and Dr. Roy Spencer, an ESSC principal scientist, use data gathered by advanced microwave sounding units on NOAA, NASA and European satellites to get accurate temperature readings for almost all regions of the Earth. This includes remote desert, ocean and rain forest areas where reliable climate data are not otherwise available.

The satellite-based instruments measure the temperature of the atmosphere from the surface up to an altitude of about eight kilometers above sea level. Once the monthly temperature data are collected and processed, they are placed in a “public” computer file for immediate access by atmospheric scientists in the U.S. and abroad.

The complete version 6 lower troposphere dataset is available here:

http://www.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/v6.0/tlt/uahncdc_lt_6.0.txt

Archived color maps of local temperature anomalies are available on-line at:

http://nsstc.uah.edu/climate/

Neither Christy nor Spencer receives any research support or funding from oil, coal or industrial companies or organizations, or from any private or special interest groups. All of their climate research funding comes from federal and state grants or contracts.

–30–

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103 thoughts on “UAH Global Temperature Report: February 2019

  1. Something that Ryan Mause showed me: What color would that map be, if the global average temp (0.36 C deg) was applied globally?

    Answer: It would be fully white. Basically, it would mean no change.

    • Thanks for the great perspective. Suppose they will have to update the color scale for the map to cover the deceptiveness that the world is not warming that much.

    • What color would that map be, if the global average temp (0.36 C deg) was applied globally?

      0.36 C isn’t the global average temperature, it’s the ‘difference’ from the global average temperature for February between 1981 and 2010.

    • How stupid do these hack climate scientists think people are?

      Very stupid. America has some of the best temperature data for over 100 years, yet they’re so wrong they have to specifically cherry pick there data to start in 1978 – when the consensus was we were headed for the next ice age.

      Agenda driven nonsense. The 1930s were much hotter than today. We are setting all time record cold so far this year, where is that data? Nowhere in mainstream media that’s where.

      It’s hardly up for debate.

      Final thought. If ice is in the water and when the ice melts it’s supposed to raise water levels…

      What happens when you fill a glass half full of water, then add ice to the brim of the glass and let it melt, will it flow everywhere?

      No, any moron who has two brain cells knows ice displaces the same amount of water as it would if it was completely melted 😑

      • Actually, there will be an insignificant rise in sea level due to melting ice, because of the deifference between the desnity of salt water and the density of fresh water.

  2. The map shows my region as being warmer than normal. This February was anything but normal, it was much colder than previous years. This is why I don’t trust anything to do with climate any more.

    • My area was 5 F below average for the month …map shows above avg !
      Something is FUBAR !

    • my area was 15-20 degrees below average the entire month of february. what are we measuring again?

    • “The month’s coldest seasonally-adjusted temperature departure from average is easy to spot on the map: -5.6 °C (-10.1°F) northwest of Edmonton, Alberta”

      I think I prefer the satellite weather; cold anomalies are less than half of what they are down here on the ground where we live.

      “To the south, Prince George [west of Edmonton] experienced the biggest temperature difference, provincially, of -12.5°C below the monthly norm with an average temperature of -17.5°C for February. The monthly norm is -5.0°C.”

      https://www.energeticcity.ca/2019/03/environment-canada-releases-temperatures-for-february/

    • The notion that this winter in North America is half a degree above the mean is patently absurd . The statistic is devoid of significance.

    • MN spent all but a couple days in Feb well below normal…well below. We are expecting snow this weekend. We haven’t hit normal for March yet.

      When we have flooding which should be really bad will this be caused by CO2?

    • Thank you. I feel the same way. Record cold every you look..NH and SH but still the trend goes up. I don’t believe it.

    • Maybe this February did look for your region like much colder than previous years, but the graph is looking at this February in comparison to all the years from 1997 i asume.

  3. Wait a minute, we had a new all-time record low in Ill., LA never got to 70 degrees, there were massive cold snaps and national visits by the “polar vortex”, and we had above average temps? Sorry, not buying that.

    • The polar vortex doesn’t make the “air” colder, merely moves the air to different places.

        • According to the UAH data sheet link the Arctic (NoPol) was over a degree warmer than average this February. Slightly cooler than the previous 3 Februaries but much warmer than 2015.

  4. How could this be for southern Ontario? showing warmer lower trophosphere.

    Toronto 2019 February data from Environment Canada
    Max Temp Min Temp Mean Temp °C
    Avg -0.1 -8.3 -4.2

    • Really? I believe they started in 1895 (or earlier) (I live just to the south of Calgary and record temps for Environment Canada (and yes it was the coldest I have recorded in 30 years)…) however, I did hear they said it was the coldest Feb, but I haven’t looked at the Climate Records yet….

  5. NOAA has declared that the long-awaited El Niño, a warming of tropical Pacific Ocean waters, has officially arrived

    Good, I also predicted it back in July based on solar activity.
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2018/07/05/solar-minimum-and-enso-prediction/

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Figure-768×263.png

    ENSO is under solar control. A La Niña is now expected for mid-2020 to 2021, when solar activity starts increasing rapidly.

    Leamon, R.J., McIntosh, S.W. and Marsh, D.R., 2018. Termination of Solar Cycles and Correlated Tropospheric Variability. arXiv preprint arXiv:1812.02692.
    https://arxiv.org/pdf/1812.02692.pdf

  6. Sorry, but this presentation does not pass the BS smell test. The northern hemisphere was featured in story after story about cold records, snow records, lake ice jams, etc, and in the southern hemisphere (where I live) producers are struggling with a decent harvest, which does not suggest a normal summer temperature. This all just does not add up to believable. Can somebody familiar with the data sets figure out what is wrong? Otherwise, I’m going with the obvious: BS!

    • Just my SWAG but I think that is why an average global temperature is strange. The vast majority of the planet will not be near the average. Another fact to remember is that the UAH system is not measuring what the USCRN network measures. Yes they both measure temperatures but at different altitudes and in different ways.

      So in short it isn’t BS just the way that “averages” work out.

        • I’m sticking with BS. I’ll see your warm and dry and offset with cold records and lots of snow. BS!

          • What would you know. You seem to think your corner of the planet is all that matters. Looking out your window and having an opinion on climate is the real BS.

          • Javier, you seem to have missed the part where I cited weather reports from the northern hemisphere. Where does this animosity come from?

          • Because what you are saying is obviously not true. Weather reports focus on the extraordinary. All of Europe was significantly warmer than average, as it was the third warmest February, after 2016 and 2017.
            https://climate.copernicus.eu/surface-air-temperature-february-2019
            Many parts of Europe broke February records for warmest. It was only very cold in certain parts of North America.

            And then you use your personal opinion, not backed by data, to attack Christy and Spencer’s work.

          • Javier posts a link to “Global High Temps”, which states a 0.5C above the baseline and then states some places in Europe were “substantially” higher than normal.
            The USA & Canada has been seeing up to -20C degrees below baseline for Weeks with cold records broken all over the place Siberia was 12-18C below normal and also breaking cold records.
            Of course somehow this “balances out” to being “warmer in the Northern Hemisphere.

            To compare Tropospheric Anomalies to Surface Anomalies is what is BS, they are just not the same, I have been pointing this our for many years, it is NOT a crticism of the work of Dr Spencer or Dr Christie.

          • Lower tropospheric and surface temperature anomalies are not the same, but they are saying the same: February was a warm month, particularly in the NH.

            The areas that were colder than average in North America are less than 15% of the NH.

            If somebody is going to call BS the honest work of some scientists, he’d better get the data straight.

        • CO2 picks and chooses which parts of the planet to warm I guess.
          What happened to, warmer winters, less snow, The end of skiing?

    • ” The northern hemisphere was featured in story after story about cold records, snow records, lake ice jams, etc,”

      Parts of the norther hemisphere have been very cold, other parts have been very warm.

  7. The reason that the Satellite data does not reflect what posters are telling us they experienced is because it is not measuring what they get at the surface.
    They are measuring the Heat being LOST to the Atmosphere and then Space from those low temperatures but mixed with other areas as well due to the strong mixing by Air Currents.
    You can only compare the Satellite temps to themselves.

    • true, but if surface temps drop by 15 degrees and troposphere temps remain constant…. why bother.

    • well…if satellites are measuring heat lost to space…like open water in the arctic
      ..when a cold front comes down and rides under the warmer air…that pushes the warmer air up…lost to space

      so satellites are measuring heat lost…and wouldn’t even know if the surface temps are actually dropping/cooling

  8. When I was studying for my degree, any lab report that failed to show a proper calculation of margin of error, and discussed the sources of error, would get a “C” at best for being incomplete.

    To be able to measure a month’s worldwide temperature to an accuracy of 1/100th of a degree is damn impressive – or just poor science.

  9. Long term warming of 1.3°C per century is good news, but what is the uncertainty in that slope? Also, why would you spend millions of dollars on a satellite and not include thrusters to keep it in the location it needs to be in to do the job you designed it to do? Even worse, why would you make that mistake more than once?

    • I calculate the uncertainty of the slope as +/- 0.1 deg.
      Note: I do not correct for auto-correlation, which most people agree is necessary. (Just lazy.)
      Auto-correlation correction will make the uncertainty value a bit larger.

      I remember when ion-thrusters were first developed and made station-keeping practical for the first time. It was very big news and exciting. This was a real science fiction moment come to life. Remember that these satellites are on station for years and even decades. With conventional chemical reactant thrusters, the weight of the fuel load was prohibitively large.

          • Each way, (+/-) yes.
            Not worthless, the slope is significant, but not by a lot.
            The confidence interval certainly has its uses.
            A few years age, “The Pause” was the hot topic every month. There were a few ways to calculate it. The short story is, how long a line can you make where the slope is not statistically significantly different from 0.0. That is to say, your proposed line can have a positive slope, but 0.0 is within the 95% confidence interval of your lines’ slope.

            Do take my number with a grain of salt, as it is just from memory, and I may have misremembered it. (I cannot find my calculation algorithm anywhere.)

        • but what about the changes they do at every version change? this would increase the uncertanty to over 0.2°C.

          • Joel Heinrich

            but what about the changes they do at every version change? this would increase the uncertanty to over 0.2°C.

            As I understand it the trend and its uncertainty are intrinsic properties of the data series. The data itself should already be stated with its own uncertainty levels (I think Roy Spencer said the monthly UAH TLT uncertainty was ~ +/- 0.05C). Assuming there’s an equal likelihood that the monthly error for any given month is +/-0.05C, then the trend (and error in the trend) shouldn’t be affected.

            For instance, if you subtract (or add) 0.05C to all the monthly UAH values the trend would still be the same. Even if you alternated by subtracting 0.05c one month and adding it the next, the trend and error should remain the same. If the individual monthly ‘best estimate’ values change, then we might see a change in the trend, even if the uncertainty of those values remains +/-0.05C.

      • Auto-correlation correction will make the uncertainty value a bit larger.

        Statistical uncertainty based on a linear model is not the uncertainty for real, it is just a statistics that doesn’t really represent the reality.

        I won’t know because I will be dead by then, but I’d guess it would be odd if year 2100 would hit the linear expectation; there are many factors pulling the result from its trajectory

  10. How is this thing supposed to be measuring temperature? This is for the month of Feb, right?

    We have had almost the coldest Feb on record…..we’re 61F right now….when we should be high 70’s to low 80’s

    …and it says we’re +2 for the month

    Something is definitely wrong…..

    • We have had…

      Therein lies your answer. Where “we” happen to live doesn’t tell us very much about what’s happening elsewhere. Look at the UAH anomaly map. Some regions were very cold, but more were very warm. It was the 4th warmest February on record globally according to both UAH and RSS satellite TLT producers.

  11. Satellites measure specific wavelengths of light (electromagnetic radiation) from which temperature above the ground is inferred. I believe land measurements use light radiated by oxygen/ This is because clouds often block a satellites ability to “see” the surface, and because the surface is so varied you can’t make any reasonable assumptions (where as an ocean you can assume it is water that is emitting). That is my understanding anyway.

    I am starting to lose confidence that satellite measurements are any more accurate than land temperature measurements. I already knew about the adjustments due to equipment getting older and the orbit – it isn’t quite circular and changes over time – but for the satellites to have measured a warmer February 2019 then normal is clear grounds that something is wrong. Either the satellite measurement-to-inferences are wrong, or the air mass that is being measured is not a good proxy for land temperature.

    I was thinking another decent proxy for land temperature over the scale of a month (or maybe several months) would be the amount of Home Heating Oil sold or consumed. If Feb were indeed a warmer month than usual, then the amount of home heating oil should be less than normal. I am willing to bet it’s not.

    • The month was unusually cloudy .
      Maybe they don’t properly do clouds .
      Or their paycheck determines the results ….

      • Or their paycheck determines the results ….

        So you are suggesting that Spencer and Christie have fraudulently changed the satellite data in order to please their federal and state funders? I’m the last person to defend their views, but I find it offensive to libel any scientist like this without clear evidence.

    • Que the usual apologist clergy to lie away the discrepancy.

      This is why the contrarians here who constantly defend the constant adjustments and lie about temperature are lying liars who deserve no respect and no polite interaction. Denver Colorado was disastrously cold this year, significantly below average. This is pure Orwellian horse crap

        • It didn’t appear to me as such and it certainly isn’t representative of how significantly colder it’s been. It was a painful February. Snowiest and coldest full month since I’ve been here in ten years and colder than the winter i spent in empire at 8500 ft. I rode my atv that winter btw, no way i could have this year

    • “Either the satellite measurement-to-inferences are wrong, or the air mass that is being measured is not a good proxy for land temperature.”

      Satellite algorithms for estimate the temperature of the bulk air above land
      use a constant emmissivity for the land surface and a slightly different one for sea.

      If you check for the regions where satillites differ from the surface measures you will find

      1. No difference over oceans
      2. Largest differences over land where snow falls

      chekc the emissivity of snow compared to land not covered by snow.

  12. Impressive flow of water vapor over our heads and on our heads in the SE USA, looks like the gradient driving evaporation is strong. I take it to mean cooling atm over warm oceans…and incredible amount of energy has been radiated into space. So, maybe that is what the satellites see. Almost makes sense, assuming you trust the satellite operators.

  13. An average of hourly obs in February from my local station was about 0.5C below the climatological average but the chart has it in the +2.5-3.5 range.

    Should there really be that much of a difference between a surface and an LT average?

    • “Should there really be that much of a difference between a surface and an LT average?”

      ya they average different things at different times of the day

      Satellite does two passes at different times of the day. Then they are both adjusted to Local Noon

      using a model

      over any given month there is no reason to expect them to match. Over years, perhaps.

  14. We normally see a 3-4 month lag between this metric and ENSO. It appears satellites tend to report more of an average over a period of several months than what we see at the surface for the month. While we can see the surface variability somewhat captured, it is not to the same level.

    Keep that in mind when looking at this data. Don’t look for a direct relationship to what is happening at the surface.

  15. Conclusion: Troposphere temperature has nothing to do with temperature at zero altitude ? At least not in the short term

  16. Any real Physicist knows T is not an “averageable quantity”. Currently averages have lewapt as Water Vapour carries Latent Heat poleward as half of the vortex bulges. The Energy causing a +3.2C Polar rise would maybe cause 0.3C rise in lower latitudes, as is being carried by the corresponding equator-wards bulges. So the Thermometer Lies! Or at least those who misrepresent what s really going on, plus Holder’s Inequality. Oz4caster’s charts are well-maintained, but his work is being mocked by he dishonesty of marxist unscience.
    The Pause still lives in fact, and this is becoming apparent even to some Nasa Solar Scientists, brave folk. “Comes the Hour, comes the Man (and Woman)”. And Thanks TonyL, honest Statistics do count. Error must be quantified in all its forms in each chart, or that chart is valuelessly False…. Brett

      • Nick, according to Kevin Cowtan’s site at University of York, the warming trend in RSS TLT, which was for a long time the main source of a prominent ‘no warming since 1998’ claim, as of Feb 2019 now shows (just) statistically significant warming since 1998 ( 0.156 ±0.155 °C/decade (2σ)): http://www.ysbl.york.ac.uk/~cowtan/applets/trend/trend.html

        Does your method show the same result?

        • David,
          My calc and plot are here. I get (From Jan 1998) the same trend, but greater significance (lower bound CI is 0.56 °C/Century). There is a plot here showing the regions of significance; the trend is significant from 2009 and all earlier start years. In fact, there is only a very brief break in significance around 2010, reflecting the peak in that year.

  17. I see a modulated sine wave. The only question in my mind is when will we recross the X axis going dowhill.

  18. So above I see:

    Global composite temp.: +0.36 C (+0.65 °F) above seasonal average

    Is that s compatible measurement for that which I found for last Feb here?:

    Overall, the combined global land and ocean temperature for February 2018 was 0.65°C (1.17°F) above the 20th century average of 12.1°C (53.9°F) and the 11th highest February temperature in the 1880–2018 record. This value was also 0.57°C (1.03°F) cooler than the record high set in 2016

    • UAH satellite data (lower troposphere) for February 2018 was .20 C. You probably are looking at the GISS surface data. They are not compatible for many reasons.

      • Ah thank you for the clarification there, I was really wondering.

        I do live on the surface so I am mainly interested in surface data; if I lived in a room heated by vents in the ceiling, I don’t know why anyone would put the thermostat on the ceiling… I am sure I am missing something as not all heat up there represents heat that got in first and then left the surface. Some heat in the troposphere never went past the lower troposphere right? Wouldn’t more energy not makeing it through the troposphere would make us colder? Is there any way to tell the difference between energy/heat leaving vs entering vs blocked/reflected?

        Or maybe it doesn’t matter for some reason I haven’t heard yet or is measured and reported elsewhere?

  19. The key tell in the whole En Nino thing this time is that there is no trade wind anomaly to speak of Yes, a blob of warm subsurface water did work its way from the far western Pacific and has surfaced in the central Pacific but the trade winds are not slack or reversed and that water will get pushed right back west.

    Trade winds across most of the equatorial Pacific are near nominal and you can not have an El Nino without a significant trade wind anomaly. It just isn’t there. The warm blob has surfaced at about 140 W longitude but surface temperatures are still cool to the east of it. Also the ENSO index has gone negative. This is going to be just another bump in a long “La Nada” period, in my opinion.

    • Crosspatch, The Nino 3.4 index has not gone negative. Bumped up a little more even. Also plenty of the warm water still sitting below the surface which makes it look like the index will average above .5 C for the rest of the month. That would make it an official El Nino.

      I agree that the trade winds have not got in the act, but there’s still a lot of extra warm water that has been evaporating for the last 6 months. Probably enough to push the UAH anomaly upward by .1 – .2 C for the next few months.

  20. waiting for the raw worshipers to pitch a fit

    ” NOAA-18 has been operating for 13 years and is now past its time frame for accurate diurnal adjustments based on initial drifting, meaning the adjustments are adding spurious warming to the time series. On the other hand, NOAA-19 has also drifted so far that it too is introducing an error, but given its direction of drift, these errors are of the opposite sign.

    The two satellites are almost compensating for each other, but not to our satisfaction. In addition, the current non-drifting satellite operated by the Europeans, MetOP-B, has not yet been adjusted or “neutralized” for it’s seasonal peculiarities related to the diurnal cycle. While these MetOP-B peculiarities do not affect the long-term global trend, they do introduce error within a particular year in specific locations over land. So, all in all, we anticipate generating new adjustments for NOAA-18 and NOAA-19 to account for their behavior of late and shall also modify MetOP-B to account for it’s unique seasonal cycle.

    • [W]aiting for the raw worshipers to pitch a fit

      No fit needed nor forthcoming. When manufacturers of “global indices”demonstrate a grasp of station signal structure even remotely as realistic as the available knowledge of satellite orbital mechanics, the insistence on vetted raw data will fade. Until such time, the snarky sales pitch for “homogenization” by blind numbercrunchers will remain but a pretentious exercise in junk science.

  21. Whilst I have no doubts about Roy’s and John’s bona fides, it does seem that there is something very odd going on with these results. It is unquestionable that the USA was very cold over large parts during February, but that wasn’t what the satellite results suggest.

    Is there something funky going on with the dataset, when it so obviously diverges from the weather it is supposed to replicate? And we’re not just talking about a fraction of one degree, either. It was seriously cold over the majority of the continental USA.

    If Roy and John are convinced that their data is a true representation of the lower troposphere, then perhaps we need to reassess how useful that data is as a proxy for surface temps. Alternatively, there is some other unidentified, but significant issue.

  22. Amazing how most comments here are missing the fundamental point that lower troposphere temps are NOT necessarily the same as surface temps…

    • Ric,

      Your assertions are correct for a shorter duration of few days, but we are talking about a month’s worth of February Data. Heat from surface released to the lower/upper troposphere would surely give higher temperature in lower/upper troposphere, but the temperature cannot remain high for one full month in LT compared to the surface.

    • Ric

      Amazing how most comments here are missing the fundamental point that lower troposphere temps are NOT necessarily the same as surface temps…

      The surface data will likely show a relative ‘increase’ in global February temperatures compared to January; the anomaly was up about a +0.1 degree C. That’s according to the NCEP/NCAR reanalysis for the month, which is normally pretty close to the official surface data: https://moyhu.blogspot.com/p/latest-ice-and-temperature-data.html#NCAR

      Early days, but March has started very warm too, globally.

      • I think there’s a lot of confusion in all the comments here between those talking about Northern Hemisphere temperatures and those talking about just the USA.

        Half the arguments are that it was cold in the USA therefore it must have been cold in the entire Northern Hemisphere.

        The others are arguing that the temperatures shown by UAH for the US don’t reflect ground temperatures. This last point seems more reasonable, in that NOAA show the USA as being almost 2°C below the 1981-2010 base period for February, whereas UAH show it as only 0.03°C below.

        I’m not sure if the difference is due to differences between ground and lower Troposphere temperatures in general, or if there’s an issue with air moving around in the Troposphere so the specific area measured by the satellites is not identical to that if the land area. Or it could be to do with the way satellites measure temperature.

        • Yes, UAH has February 2019 as the 4th warmest February on its record for the northern hemisphere; USA48 was below average slightly for the month.

  23. Another apparent oddity in the February 2019 UAH update is the value for Australia. UAH TLT places this at -0.07C below the 1981-2010 average for the month; yet BOM has stated that February 2019 was the 4th warmest February on record there: http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/month/aus/summary.shtml

    Further evidence I guess that TLT data cannot be taken as representative of surface temperatures even over large regions for periods as short as a month.

  24. It would be interesting to see the ground truth calibration points along with the satellite determined temperatures at the same time. I assume this would be from ballon data. But it would be good to see that data each month. Can some one point me to it?

  25. Environment Canada has recorded the mean temperature of Feb, 2019 in Edmonton as -19.4 Centigrade and the usual as -7.6 so there is something wrong with the anomalies if you say Northwest of Edmonton was the coldest at -5.6 below normal.

  26. Can anybody tell me how big is the instrument error of a single UAH temperature measurement? I studied physics and it bothers me that I can’t see uncertainties anywhere in the climate science field.
    There are different types of measurement errors: random, systematic, instrumental. You can reduce random error doing more measurements. You can improve your methods and so reduce systematic error. But what I see nowhere is the instrumental error. And for better understanding: the total accuracy cannot be better than the instrumental error. You cannot take a tape measure and compute thermal expansion coefficient of a table – the tape isn’t precise enough to do so – thermal expansion of a table would be under 0.1mm, while accuracy of the tape would be ca. 0.5mm at best. You can’t overcome this limitation regardless how many times you measure the table.
    The same can be said about Jason 3 – its instrumental accuracy is 4cm (yes, metrology says it should be rounded up to a single digit if it isn’t 1 – already a failure for NASA), so the total error cannot be better than 4cm because you take square root from squares of all your error types to get the total error. And so you cannot report sea level rise in mm. In reality it will always be 0±4cm.
    The same goes for the land-based temperature records – it can’t be better than 1K. But for UAH I’ve never seen what their instrumental error is.

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