BBC’s 50C Days Rubbish


By Paul Homewood

h/t Ian Magness

The BBC are now making it up as they go along!

The number of extremely hot days every year when the temperature reaches 50C has doubled since the 1980s, a global BBC analysis has found.

They also now happen in more areas of the world than before, presenting unprecedented challenges to human health and to how we live.

The total number of days above 50C (122F) has increased in each decade since 1980. On average, between 1980 and 2009, temperatures passed 50C about 14 days a year.

The number rose to 26 days a year between 2010 and 2019.

In the same period, temperatures of 45C and above occurred on average an extra two weeks a year.

“The increase can be 100% attributed to the burning of fossil fuels,” says Dr Friederike Otto, associate director of the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford.

Why is the BBC now trying to do the work of climate scientists? An analysis like this should be done by experts, who would be aware of all of the problems, uncertainties and limitations of such an exercise. And it should also be properly peer reviewed. The BBC’s Mickey Mouse approach is useful for nothing more than propaganda.

Their own chart, incidentally, shows that there has been no increasing trend since 1998, which rather puts Dr Otto’s unscientific comment in perspective. No proper scientist would make such claims without proof. There is also a clear step up in the data in 1998, which should set alarm bells ringing.

But let’s look at the BBC’s methodology:


It went over 50C in my area, why is it not featured?

Reports of record temperatures usually come from measurements taken at an individual weather station, but the data we have studied represents larger areas than those covered by a single station.

For example, Death Valley National Park in southern California is one of the hottest places on Earth. Temperatures in certain parts of the park regularly pass 50C in summer. But when creating an average for maximum temperatures for the wider area, using several different sources, a figure below 50C is reached.

Where is the data from?

The BBC has used the maximum daily temperatures from the high resolution global ERA5 dataset, produced by the Copernicus Climate Change Service. The data is often used to study global climate trends.

ERA5 combines actual weather observations from many sources, such as stations and satellites, with data from modern weather forecasting models.

The process fills in gaps created by poor station coverage in many parts of the world and helps us to understand climate change.

What analysis have we done?

Using the maximum temperature for every day from 1980 to 2020, we identified how often temperatures exceeded 50C.

We counted the number of days and locations with a maximum temperature of 50C or higher for every year, to determine the trend over time.

We also looked at the change in maximum temperatures. We did this by working out the difference between the average maximum temperature over land and sea for the most recent decade (2010-2019) compared with the 30 years before (1980-2009).

Averages of at least 30 consecutive years are known as climatologies. These are used for showing how recent periods compare to a climate average.

What do we mean by ‘location’?

Each location is roughly 25 sq km, or about 27-28 sq km at the equator. These grids can cover large areas and may contain many different types of landscape. The grids are squares of 0.25 degrees latitude by 0.25 degrees longitude.

The key sentence concerns the use of ERA5, which is essentially a computer model. In other words, the BBC is not using actual data at all, merely the outworkings of a model.

Their analysis is only fit for the bin,


One of the regions particularly highlighted is Iraq, with the usual tear jerking story:

His tale however does not stand up to scrutiny, as cereal production in Iraq is much higher than it was prior to the turn of the century. Output did drop between 2014 and 2018, but even at its worst, harvests were still much better than in the 1980s, when they supposedly had a nice mild climate.

Although output fell by a half between 2014 and 2015, declines of this proportion have happened before, for instance 1972 to 1973, and 1996 to 2000. These are associated with droughts, not heat.

New Series

We should not be surprised to learn that the BBC are using this junk science to launch a new series, which doubtless will peddle more lies and misinformation:

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John V. Wright
September 17, 2021 2:14 am

“The increase can be 100% attributed to the burning of fossil fuels,” says Dr Friederike Otto, associate director of the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford.
How terribly sad that Oxford allows such scientifically illiterate garbage to be posted in its name.

Joao Martins
Reply to  John V. Wright
September 17, 2021 4:45 am

It seems that post-modern science is being replaced by the newest impressionistc science, where arithmetic and algebra were replaced by impressions and feelings…

Last edited 1 year ago by Joao Martins
Reply to  Joao Martins
September 17, 2021 7:09 am

It ‘ s not even impressionistic.
This is without doubt dadaism science.
You can read on Wikipedia
“the dada movement consisted of scientists
who REJECTED logic,reason and aestheticism of MODERN CAPITALIST SOCIETY ”

These people were woke and postmodern more than 100 years ago.

Joao Martins
Reply to  SxyxS
September 17, 2021 8:19 am

Thank you for this note! It did not occur to me but it seems a good subject of inquiry! That throws the influence back half a century before Michel Foucault & friends, associates & disciples.

To bed B
Reply to  SxyxS
September 18, 2021 2:58 pm

Its what happens when it turns out that you are not really that good but still want to be the teachers pet.

Dave Fair
Reply to  John V. Wright
September 18, 2021 9:38 am

The increase can be attributed to a Super El Nino.

September 17, 2021 2:21 am

 This sort of rubbish from the BBC goes well beyond ‘junk science’. This is an example of what is just good old Propaganda and Lies. 

Reply to  nicholas tesdorf
September 17, 2021 4:13 am

How long till griff starts including this “study” in his litany of lies which according to him, proves that CO2 is going to kill us all.

Reply to  MarkW
September 17, 2021 11:05 am

Judging by the time stamp of his comment below, slightly less than four hours.

Barry Sheridan
September 17, 2021 2:23 am

Reform of the BBC is a lost cause, its output is largely propaganda, if reality become undeniable they do their best to hide or ignore it.

Reply to  Barry Sheridan
September 17, 2021 4:15 am

We have exactly the same problem with the ABC in Australia.

John Smith
Reply to  Clive
September 17, 2021 4:54 am

And public radio in the US

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Clive
September 17, 2021 9:50 am

… and the CBC in Canada.

Reply to  Clive
September 17, 2021 9:58 am

…and the CBC (communist broadcasting system)?

Joao Martins
September 17, 2021 2:44 am

Once upon a time…

… told grand-mother to her grand-sons …

… there was in the UK a reliable information radio and tv station called BBC.

Joao Martins
Reply to  Joao Martins
September 17, 2021 2:47 am

… Really!

I am not speaking about what my models predict, viz., that in the next few years information of BBC will be less and less relieble! I am referring to facts observed in the present and in the past!

Reply to  Joao Martins
September 17, 2021 4:14 am

You aren’t an expert witness, therefore your facts are not admissible in court.

Joao Martins
Reply to  MarkW
September 17, 2021 4:41 am

Yes, you are right. I think that the handicap that disqualifies me is to have some ligths of arithmetics…

September 17, 2021 3:04 am

These articles are being trotted out in the run-up to COP 26.
Expect a increasing number of even more hysterical articles over the next two months.

September 17, 2021 3:06 am

The BBC is unquestionably the nation’s largest purveyor of propaganda – with a global reach through the World Service. The BBC decided in 2006 how it was going to be. And as the CoP approaches the hysteria meter goes ever further off the scale This article is a perfect example of it.

There have been a few reports – as part of the propaganda drive – on the levels of climate anxiety and fear.

On one – link below – the smugness bordering on glee in Roger Harrabin’s voice as he read the report was quite palpable. A most unpleasant man.

“Climate change: Young people very worried – survey

Nearly 60% of young people approached said they felt very worried or extremely worried.
More than 45% of those questioned said feelings about the climate affected their daily lives.
Three-quarters of them said they thought the future was frightening. Over half (56%) say they think humanity is doomed.”

As far as the BBC is concerned any model driven nonsense is as good as gospel.

From their education resources for children

Scientists can use historic and current data to create a computer simulation of how the world’s climate may change in the future.

Scientists can also use computer models to predict the impacts of climate change.

What is Affected
Ice: Melting of the Antarctic ice sheet and melting of glaciers in the Northern Hemisphere.
Sea levels: Likely to increase due to melted ice and expansion as temperatures increase.
Ocean temperature: An increase in ocean temperature could change ocean currents and the climate of countries bordering these currents (like the UK).
Extreme weather: Greater differences in weather, for example, more intense droughts and floods and more extreme temperatures (both hot and cold). 
Impact on crops: Low lying farmland may be flooded. In areas where there is less rainfall droughts may make it difficult to grow crops. If there is extreme rainfall then crops could get flooded and washed away.

The degree of infantalisation is impressive: “Our tips from experts and exam survivors will help you through.”

Exam survivor? 

Last edited 1 year ago by strativarius
Reply to  fretslider
September 17, 2021 4:09 am

” Scientists can use historic and current data to create a computer simulation of how the world’s climate may change in the future. ”
IIRC they do not include the effect of clouds in their computer ” crystal balls ” models, so does this affect the accuracy of their predictions?

Reply to  StephenP
September 17, 2021 4:13 am

Children are told none of the uncertainties, none of the deficiencies in the models or that the new improved models run hotter than ever.

They are taught models are accurate

Rory Forbes
Reply to  fretslider
September 17, 2021 9:56 am

We live in a world where computers are the world authority (at least to a generation who live through computers). Of course modeling will determine the accepted truth for kids. Computers know everything after all.

Reply to  fretslider
September 17, 2021 10:18 am
Dave Fair
Reply to  ResourceGuy
September 18, 2021 9:50 am

Shows the “high” 35-year period of an approximately 70-year cycle, with portions of the declining periods on either side.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  fretslider
September 17, 2021 11:55 am

“Three-quarters of them said they thought the future was frightening. Over half (56%) say they think humanity is doomed.”

It’s terrible what the climate change lies are doing to young people.

Mark ingraham
September 17, 2021 3:26 am

lol China is having tons of blackouts and all you libs are dying.

Reply to  Mark ingraham
September 17, 2021 6:51 am

Ward one is calling, Ingraham is out of his room again.

Alan the Brit
September 17, 2021 3:53 am

I stopped listening to BBC propaganda years ago! Nobody there has any true scientific training other than in “broadcasting”, nothing more technical than that!!! I recall several years back now they did some shows on various things around the UK of “scientific” & “archaeological” interest. They had invited a bloke who at the time was head honcho at the great Institution of Civil Engineers, (there not as good as we Structural Engineers naturally), but this guy was an embarrassment on the Stonehenge programme, where the American archaeologist was explaining how he thought the stones were erected, this guy from the ICE, (known for being a bit of a twit in some ways), was pooh-poohing it all, but was eventually shown to be completely wrong on almost every aspect!!! The BBC thought he was brilliant, & the American archaeologist was just an enthusiastic eccentric!!! That is the level of the BBC I am sorry to say, as a hard pressed taxpaying pensioner & licence fee payer!!! Privatise the BBC & lets get some value for money!!!

Reply to  Alan the Brit
September 17, 2021 6:49 am

I’m a retired BBC engineer and my boss, in the 1970s summed up BBC journalism very succinctly “Know bugger all about anything, become a (BBC) journalist” – plus ca change 50 years later.
And my father in the 1950s “You think I know nothing but I know dam all”.

September 17, 2021 3:56 am

Friederike Elly Luise Otto is co-leader of World Weather Attribution.
WWA say: “Since 2015 the World Weather Attribution (WWA) initiative has been conducting real-time attribution analysis of extreme weather events as they happen around the world. This provides the public, scientists and decision-makers with the means to make clear connections between greenhouse gas emissions and impactful extreme weather events, such as storms, floods, heatwaves and droughts.”
These “science-activists” don’t even try to hide their confirmation bias and scare agenda. They are so proud of it.
But then neither does the BBC.
They have always made some good fictional and scary TV series. And non-brits don’t even have to pay for them.
I hope this one is heavily dramatised and has a great twist in the plot.
You know – something we just can’t guess what’s going to happen.

Reply to  Russell
September 17, 2021 4:20 am

Don’t forget her PhD in the Philosophy of Science. 🙂

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  Russell
September 17, 2021 4:47 am

In the US we can get BBC on cable/satellite TV, streamed through Britbox or on satellite radio, all of which cost money. The Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) shows only a few BBC programs for free.

Mumbles McGuirck
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
September 17, 2021 1:52 pm

The Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) shows only a few BBC programs for free.

Well, you are paying for it. Just consult your last 1040A form. 😉

Reply to  Mumbles McGuirck
September 17, 2021 9:10 pm

And, there are many viewers who pay PBS stations in addition to the copious taxes sent the ungrateful PBS.

Reply to  Russell
September 17, 2021 9:06 pm

They have always made some good fictional and scary TV series. And non-brits don’t even have to pay for them.”

The Brits charge darn expensive prices for broadcasters to show their films and TV here in the states.
Resulting in a number of broadcast stations to show a very limited group of British shows, endlessly repeating.
And in broadcast stations instituting pay-per-month British TV shows where a monthly fee is charged for viewers to see more old or quality British TV.

Besides, only some of the shows were good fiction. Often those shows are backed up by excellent acting.
Only, there appears to be no end of plagiarism, copycat, woke-ism, way overdramatic poor quality acting in many many redundantly similar shows. That is, once a storyline proves of value, that same storyline crops up ad nauseum, or soap opera silliness is invoked ad nauseum.

Climate believer
September 17, 2021 4:01 am

There could be multiple reasons why that guys farm has failed, anecdotal and non corroborated stories are not science.

Mismanagement of water resources in Iraq are well known, irrigation efficiency is around 30%.

Mumbles McGuirck
Reply to  Climate believer
September 17, 2021 1:56 pm

My thought exactly. You notice they don’t tell you where he is in Iraq or why the area has dried up. I recall that Sodom Hussein tried to eradicate the so-called Swamp Arabs by diverting water from their homelands. Wouldn’t surprise me if the current regime is doing the same against their enemies.
(and yes, I misspelled Hussein’s first name deliberately.)

September 17, 2021 4:08 am

How much of this alleged increase is caused by UHI from expanding cities?
How much of this alleged increase is caused by more measuring stations in hot areas, which also tend to be poorer areas?

steen rasmussen
September 17, 2021 4:18 am

we see a lot of location on Earth where man had spoiled fertile soil due to over grassing and tilt agriculture. When the rain finally comes, it results in flooding which removes the top soil and the water run of to the sea. Jim Steele had made a series of fine videos on this and similar topics
also search for “rainwater harvesting” and “regenerative agriculture” and “greening the dessert”
you will be surprised to see that sometimes just small changes can make even dessert green. Bare soil don’t have anything to evaporate and therefore it generates very hot places. But when water is shade by plants and trees they keep the water. So maybe we see man made climate changes mainly because of building huge cities, tilt mono crop agriculture, deforestation and overgrassing.

September 17, 2021 4:41 am

It was a head news in our country as well.
Keep Your bad science in GB please.

September 17, 2021 4:41 am

“lies and misinformation” are all bbc and the rest of the leftist media/academia have.

September 17, 2021 5:04 am

Only 28?

We’re comparing historical temperatures measured twice a day using thermometers to highly accurate instruments continuous measuring temperature every second of the day.

Ron Long
September 17, 2021 5:07 am

Sounds like new-age kidnapping: “The increase can be attributed 100% to the burning of fossil fuels, says Dr. Friederike Otto…”, and what he is suggesting is “send more research money to me or the climate gets it”. COP 26, here we come!

Reply to  Ron Long
September 17, 2021 6:07 am

Friederike Otto…”, and what he is suggesting

Is that the correct pronoun? Is she a trans man?

Rory Forbes
Reply to  fretslider
September 17, 2021 10:04 am

Doncha know pronouns are completely fluid now? You can wake up each morning to a whole new sex/gender. Fred is definitely female though. Her middle names are Elly Luise.

Last edited 1 year ago by Rory Forbes
Mumbles McGuirck
Reply to  fretslider
September 17, 2021 2:00 pm

 Is she a trans man?

Or a Trans Am. People want to know!

September 17, 2021 6:05 am

And in today’s BBC science section, keeping that 50C theme going…

Our Planet Now

Life at 50C: The toxic gas flares fuelling Nigeria’s climate change

Joy and her family are among two million Nigerians living within 4km of a gas flare in Nigeria’s oil-rich south.

Climate change has had a devastating impact on Nigeria. Fertile lands are turning into deserts in the north, while flash floods have become more common in the south.

The country’s oil industry is making things worse as the practice of flaring – the burning of natural gas that is released when oil is extracted from the ground – is common despite its illegality. The practice is a major source of greenhouse gases and a contributor to climate change.

The BBC neglects to mention the state of things in Northern Nigeria

Violence in northern Nigeria has flared up periodically over the last 30 years. Mainly in the form of urban riots, it has pitted Muslims against Christians and has seen confrontations between different Islamic sects. Although there have been some successes in conflict management in the last decade, the 2009 and 2010 troubles in Bauchi, Borneo and Yobe states involving the radical Boko Haram sect show that violence still may flare up at any moment.

It’s an islamic basket case. Conflict is the real problem there.

Last edited 1 year ago by strativarius
September 17, 2021 6:48 am

14 times in a year on a planet with I don’t know how many millions of places, scattered all over the planet, with many of those places “in-filled” because we don’t have actual data for them.

Color me unspeakably unimpressed.

Last edited 1 year ago by MarkW
September 17, 2021 7:17 am

Tony Heller just recently revealed the amazing statistics that temps over 95F have been declining in the USA for decades. In other news….President Biden says we gotta do something about methane…mention of methane means desperation…CO2 is not getting the job done…more direct attacks on big oil needed.

Reply to  Anti-griff
September 17, 2021 9:13 am

Roy Spencer looked at the ERA5 output back in 2019 and thought that it showed spurious warming relative to other similar reanalysis stuff;

Dave Fair
Reply to  Chas
September 18, 2021 10:09 am

The differences between ERA5 and the others are strategic: There was a step-up in temperatures at the beginning of the 21st Century. NOAA took advantage of that and shifted some of the warming from the 2010s to the 2020s. That kept the upward trend going despite the “Pause.”

September 17, 2021 8:03 am

So perhaps Watts would like to show me the evidence that there aren’t more 50C events?

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  griff
September 17, 2021 10:10 am

Classic griff stupidity, and a fundamental logical fallacy. A twofer! Griff, the next time someone proves a negative will be the first time. Since this is a model product, the output isn’t actually data. We smear a little heat here, a little heat there, and suddenly we have 50°C temperatures in grid cells that have no actual data. Nice work, if you can get it.

Reply to  griff
September 17, 2021 10:14 am

What day would you like the presented evidence to begin on? Perhaps some particular day in the Eemian epoch when hippopotamus lived in the Thames?

Reply to  griff
September 18, 2021 12:03 am

Probably quite a lot of 50C events in the UK, considering Oxfordshire was once covered in a huge tropical ocean, as shown by the vast amounts of fossilised corals and other tropical species from there to well above the current arctic circle…
.(quite apart from vast quantities of coal found all over the UK, replete with fossils of tropical oceanic flora and fauna), heck I even forgot Lyme Regis, a place well known worldwide for finding some of the best fossils of tropical species….
That and the Romans growing wine-grapes near Scotland, seems to show some pretty warm climates in the past.

September 17, 2021 8:25 am

Nadine Dorries, who does not like the BBC, has just been appointed minister of Culture…

M Courtney
Reply to  Leo Smith
September 17, 2021 12:54 pm

But she’s an incompetent who has the credibility of a testicle eating reality TV star.
This is not an insult. She did it live on national TV.

If you think she can achieve anything you’re deluded.

September 17, 2021 10:14 am

They need to work overtime on messaging with the COP26 Olympics coming around and the oceans not cooperating.

NOAA SST-NorthAtlantic GlobalMonthlyTempSince1979 With37monthRunningAverage.gif (880×481) (

Dave Fair
Reply to  ResourceGuy
September 18, 2021 10:12 am

Again, an approximately 70-year cycle. The ’20s and ’30s should be interesting, especially as the PDO goes into its “cool” phase.

September 17, 2021 11:47 am
Bruce Cobb
September 17, 2021 12:47 pm

There are only 43 shopping days until the big Climate Shamapalooza Gabfest in Glasgow. So what do you get for your favorite Climate Bedwetter?
It Depends.

Mumbles McGuirck
Reply to  Bruce Cobb
September 17, 2021 2:04 pm

So your favorite Climate Bedwetter is Joe Biden.

September 17, 2021 1:47 pm
September 17, 2021 3:58 pm

The number of extremely hot days every year when the temperature reaches 50C has doubled since the 1980s, a global BBC analysis has found.

Well that might be due to the move to Automatic Weather Stations that have been mentioned before-
In Australia, faulty BoM temperature sensors contribute to “hottest year ever” – Watts Up With That?
and the problem isn’t going away it seems-
Issues with temperature sensors leading to false BoM figures? – News Of The Area

What aroused my interest was camping in the Wirrabara Forest in South Australia and noticing a weather station and talking to a Parks and Wildlife officer it seems with the long history of forestry there is a long history of weather recording in an environment that hasn’t changed much since 1879-
Wirrabara Forest Climate Statistics (

But note the dates of the maximum and minm temperatures for the location when Australia has been rolling out AWS for around 20 years and naturally they should pick up extremes of temperature that manual periodic thermometer readings wouldn’t. But how accurate are those new readings and is there a bias in any faulty readings like Coffs Harbour clearly shows?

Whatever it doesn’t disguise those rainfall extremes and no rain for 109 days back in 1906 whilst there have been wetter times more recently. Nevertheless Wirrabara Forest weather data should be of some climate interest considering its location and length of recording in a very sparse field.

Ian MacCulloch
September 17, 2021 11:01 pm

They could sell it to our ABC down under. We lap up that sort of intelligent propaganda.

To bed B
September 18, 2021 2:55 am

What is the difference between 49.9 and 50? Apart from the step up is most likely an issue with the use of electronic equipment that pick up very brief bursts of heat that a mercury thermometer would be too slow to measure, modelling to make up for a poor record, or both, is it really going to mean that a place that never exceeded 40 is heading for 50 degree days?

There is an old saying in Melbourne. If you don’t like the weather, wait 10 minutes. How long would you need to wait for it to drop back to a more bearable 49.9?

Dave Fair
September 18, 2021 9:38 am

Notice the short, 10-year period used for comparison included a Super El Nino, which included a lingering peak. Then they go on to talk about a 30-year “climate normal” period, then don’t understand the contradiction of using a short period for comparison.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Dave Fair
September 18, 2021 10:18 am

Hey, down-voter, is there anything I posted that was in any way false or misleading?

Last edited 1 year ago by Charlie Skeptic
Jamesee Shoo
September 22, 2021 1:55 pm

Yes, media outlets sensationalize everything they report. However, I live near the ice and it is melting at a rate no one in my lineage has ever witnessed. We still have cold winters but it is interrupted by about three +1C events every winter (usually in January/February) instead of just once or twice in a lifetime. The people of the North know this isn’t weather as usual. Also, as below, please do not quote anything from Tony Heller, his “science” is about as accurate as the charlatan who said COVID comes from 5G.

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