Hyping Maximum Daily Temperatures (Part 4)

From Jennifer Marohasy’s Blog

By Jennifer Marohasy

John William Abbot versus Director of Meteorology was to be heard in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, Brisbane, yesterday, Friday 3rd February 2023 – a focus of this series of blog posts. While it was to be a public hearing, and I was to be the expert witness, before I could present my evidence, the case was taken back into mediation and the public asked to leave.

I am now a part of the mediation that was not resolved yesterday. I am now legally bound to not comment on this ongoing mediation. That is set down to resume on Tuesday.

I am very grateful to Caroline, Gideon, Charles and Howard, for attending the public hearing yesterday – albeit so brief.

This sage has been ongoing for me in some form since 25th August 2015 when I first requested parallel data for Wilsons Promontory Lighthouse from the electronic weather station relying on platinum resistance probes since September 2000 and as a check from the original liquid-in-glass thermometers (including the mercury), which were installed back in 1872 and theoretically still recording temperatures. I specifically asked:

Could you please also provide me with the complete temperature record (maximum and minimum) as measured from each of these different thermometers for the period of their available record.

I am particularly keen to know if there is a single continuous monthly record for the mercury thermometer installed in 1872, to the present. [end]

This requested was made through the climatedata@bom.gov.au portal, and I followed up with phone calls, but my application was never formally acknowledged. We do know it was discussed by Bureau staff as it is mentioned in correspondence that was made public following a partially successful FOI request by Mulholland (#FOI30-6142) concerning limits set on how cold temperatures can be recorded at Goulburn. The correspondence is available online here.

Because a change in measuring equipment can potentially create discontinuities in a temperature record, it is Australian Bureau of Meteorology policy to have new equipment recording side-by-side with old equipment for a period of at least 2 years. In this way, readings from the new equipment can be compared with readings from the old equipment, including to check they are comparable – that there are no discontinuities. This is the parallel data.

It is reasonable to assume this data would be pubic, but it is guarded by the Bureau and kept secret. The Bureau also claim it is undigitized and only potentially available as hard copies of A8Forms and that the Bureau lacks the available resources for scanning to provide this on request. Access to this data for the Brisbane airport weather station was the objective of an FOI request by John Abbot and so began the current saga.

In 2017, I was successful in acquiring some parallel data for Mildura. After many late nights manually transcribing values from the scanned A8 Forms provided to me following the intervention of then Minister for Energy and Environment Josh Frydenberg I charted the data and did some analysis.

This analysis showed that the first probe, which became the official instrument at Mildura on 1 November 1996, was recording too cool relative to the mercury with some seasonal variability. On 3 May 2000, the Bureau changed the Stevenson screen to a smaller design, and while there is no record of a change in the type of probe, this almost certainly also occurred based on the very different recording pattern relative to the mercury, see Chart 1.

Initially the temperatures as recorded at Mildura, from 3 May 2000 from what I am assuming was a new second probe in the new shelter, were more consistent with the measurements from the mercury thermometer. But then I could see from the data that the temperatures from the probe started to cool relative to the mercury thermometer for the period to 27 June 2012. Cooling was at a rate of nearly 1°C per 100 years.

Then on 27 June 2012 the probe which had been recording the official temperature at Mildura for 12 years while drifting to record ever cooler, was changed. The limited available parallel data indicates that this third probe records too hot relative to the same mercury thermometer – often by 0.4 °C.

This is the extent of the available parallel data, and it suggests:

1. The change from a mercury thermometer to a probe makes a material difference to the reliability of the historical data.

2. This matters for understanding climate variability and change – the trend.

3. This information is in the public interest – given far reaching public policy decisions are being made on the basis of a 1.5C tipping point.

4. We know the data exists because I received the scanned A8 Forms for Mildura with recordings from both probes and the mercury back in 2017. We also know the data exists according to the Bureau’s own referencing of this data and discussion of this data.

On 12th December 2019, John Abbot made a request to access the parallel daily maximum and minimum temperature datasets for the Brisbane airport weather station; that is the measurements recorded using the mercury thermometer as a potential check on the measurements from the platinum resistance probe.

That data has never been provided and is the origin of the current saga to be resumed on Tuesday through private mediation.

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February 4, 2023 2:21 pm

You can have the data in 75 years.

Gary Pearse
Reply to  Scissor
February 4, 2023 4:59 pm

I think it’s high time for a go-fund-me to set up independent thermometers as near as possible to a couple of dozen of the most suspicious stations. They should be on private property and read with a camera at the appointed times.

Rud Istvan
February 4, 2023 2:46 pm

We can generally assume that if climate ‘scientists’ are trying to hide data, it is for a reason not favorable to them.
A tradition that started with Mann with bristlecone pines and Nature tricks, continued at UEA via their 2009 email exposures, and now carried on at BOM. AUS has overlapping calibration that shows the newer thermistor hot bias (lacks equivalent mercury thermal mass so MUST show higher transients) they want to hide. Germany just switched with no calibration overlap, neatly solving the disclosure problem Jen is fighting via simple bad observational practices.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 4, 2023 3:54 pm

Dr. Marohasy is also fighting corruption and fraud fueled by greed.

February 4, 2023 2:51 pm

Clearly, they have much to hide.

Ron Long
February 4, 2023 2:59 pm

I think Jennifer should take a spear gun to the mediation meeting.

Janice Moore
February 4, 2023 3:48 pm

Hang in there, Jennifer. You do Australia proud! NEVER give in.”
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(Photo source: https://www.awm.gov.au/learn/understanding-military-structure/army/womens-services )

Last edited 1 month ago by Janice Moore
Nick Stokes
February 4, 2023 4:31 pm

1. The change from a mercury thermometer to a probe makes a material difference to the reliability of the historical data.”

In fact the BoM measured and published this result. Despite your false claim that they assume no change from LiG to probe, they did do parallel measurements and discussed the result. They particularly noted the discrepancy at Mildura. This is from Trewin’s 2018 report on ACORN V2 (BRR032):

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Jennifer Marohasy
Reply to  Nick Stokes
February 4, 2023 5:00 pm

Thanks Nick. On the one hand you have said that I don’t know how to read the A8 Forms (in other threads) and yet my analysis after transcribing 1,000s of forms agrees with the BOM/Blair Trewin for that period (1997 to 2000) for Mildura. I have repeatedly made reference to the BOM doing these limited analysis, and yet not making the same parallel data available to others/public. Also, Trewin suggests that the minus 0.22 findings is insignificant, which I have previously shown it to be statistically significant. https://joannenova.com.au/2017/11/finally-bom-releases-some-secret-comparison-data-a-snow-job-revealing-new-thermometers-not-comparable/

If they could please make the data for Point Perpendicular, Cape Byron and Marble Bar public, but not just to 2004, 2007 and 2004 but to the present that would be much appreciated. We need to be able to do some analysis of the parallel data particularly after 2012 when the newer and different probes started to be rolled out. :-).

Alexy Scherbakoff
Reply to  Jennifer Marohasy
February 4, 2023 11:19 pm

You don’t catch these people out by sensors.
You catch them out by the bureaucracy they hide behind. 
All organisations are subject to ISO 9xxx, which basically means you have an operation manual that covers every process.
Your manual may stipulate that a one-eyed plumber can change the sensors on your equipment and that would be ok for ISO purposes.
Are BOM an ISO organisation? Can they supply a manual on their operations? The manual should be available to all staff, therefore no difficulty obtaining it.
If they are caught out not following official procedure then they are screwed.

Jennifer Marohasy
Reply to  Alexy Scherbakoff
February 5, 2023 1:13 pm

The Bureau is NOT ISO accredited. The Bureau has chosen to use its own standard for measuring temperatures rather than the internationally recognised one, and there is no independent verification that it applies that standard. This is acknowledged on page 11 of the 2017 AWS Review report: http://www.bom.gov.au/inside/Review_of_Bureau_of_Meteorology_Automatic_Weather_Stations.pdf

To quote from that document:

“To address measurement quality, the WMO recommends that national meteorological agencies have ISO 17025 accreditation of key measurement processes. Accreditation covers the technical procedures and processes that ensure the traceability and integrity of measurements, as well as the technical competence of the staff making the measurements. While the Bureau does not currently hold ISO 17025 accreditation, it has internal processes, technical procedures, and measurement traceability and integrity that are largely in accordance with ISO 17025 requirements.” End quote. 

‘Largely in accordance’ is incorrect, they mostly just make it up as they go along.

old cocky
Reply to  Jennifer Marohasy
February 5, 2023 1:58 pm

There are a lot of ISO standards. 9001 is the Quality Management standard, which basically boils down to having processes and procedures documented. BoM may not be accredited for 17025, but may have 9001 accreditation.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
February 4, 2023 5:59 pm

Nick, you have just shown that BoM DO HAVE the digitised data

Talk about an own goal !!

Jennifer Marohasy
Reply to  bnice2000
February 4, 2023 6:08 pm

agreed. :-).

Nick Stokes
Reply to  bnice2000
February 4, 2023 6:56 pm

I showed that BoM calculated and published the difference in means well before Jennifer started griping about it. No doubt someone did type the numbers into a computer.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Nick Stokes
February 4, 2023 8:21 pm

I think that it is noteworthy that the difference between the manual and automatic means “for all six locations” is of the same order of magnitude as the claimed decadal global trend. That is, it is a non-negligible step error.

Since when is questioning the results of scientific measurements “griping?” That says a lot about your lack of objectivity. A good scientist would welcome independent ‘sanity checks’ and be anxious to defend their work.

Martin Brumby
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
February 5, 2023 1:21 am

Just that one word ‘griping’ shows what a shill Stokes is.

Reply to  bnice2000
February 7, 2023 8:02 pm

With a 2 point conversion.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
February 4, 2023 7:54 pm

“these differences align closely with the results of tolerance checks…” So the tolerance is about 0.1C? But we can discern to 0.01C? 😉

Gary Pearse
February 4, 2023 4:48 pm

“While it was to be a public hearing, and I was to be the expert witness, before I could present my evidence, the case was taken back into mediation and the public asked to leave.”

The totalitarians are shameless. Clearly they didn’t want to have doings done in the dark to be publically aired. And what’s up with converting the proceedings to a mediation exercise! There seems to be something wrong with the justice system itself. Did the plaintiff not have any say in this?

Jennifer Marohasy
Reply to  Gary Pearse
February 4, 2023 4:52 pm

Thanks Gary, but I’m not allowed to comment on any of this. I was instructed to make no comment on the mediation process. And I was not allowed to be part of the public component, as I waited to appear as an expert witness.

Dyspeptic Curmudgeon
Reply to  Jennifer Marohasy
February 5, 2023 8:27 pm

Retired lawyer here (recovering litigator!) I would strongly suspect that the judge commenced by canvassing the counsel about where each side stood, and asked if there was No possible chance of compromise. Counsel probably hedged on a ‘Well, maybe’… and the judge said, ‘Why don’t you try another round of mediation?
And mediation is ALWAYS private.
The real question then becomes whether there actually will be any compromise offered.

In my experience, large (and especially bureaucratic) entities are far too likely to double down on stupid as no-one wants to ‘lose face’. And no-one is actually accountable for the decision: group-think and group dynamics reign.

Reply to  Dyspeptic Curmudgeon
February 7, 2023 8:12 pm

In my experience, large (and especially bureaucratic) entities are far too likely to double down on stupid as no-one wants to ‘lose face’. And no-one is actually accountable for the decision: group-think and group dynamics reign.”

They are bureaucrats and wholly fixated on their achievements for the year.
Achievements they desperately need to show successes or their merit increase will be negligible.

Their superiors are established bureaucrats who are not interested in any rocking of the boat by any of their employees.

Dyspeptic Curmudgeon
Reply to  Jennifer Marohasy
February 5, 2023 8:46 pm

It is clear that BoM is *claiming* that they cannot provide scans of the physical records as an excuse. A stupid excuse but one that is very hard to overcome.
Therefore, how about rounding up some help and offering to undertake the scanning *at your expense*. All they need do, is allow you access to the records.

If the records are single sheets they are easy to scan. Once had ‘the other side’ attempt a document dump of some 2 1/2 thousand pages. They assumed we could not review all of it in the time available (one day, a Friday). But we came prepared: a Brother ADS-1000 portable scanner, and a laptop, with lots of storage. The scanner is a long brick, and weighs a couple of pounds. It scans 16 pages per minute using its automatic document feed. (The 1000 is the first/lowest of the ‘one thousand’ series: the higher numbered versions have more bells but don’t really add much).

16 pages per minute took 2 of us to keep it fed and cleared. One person prepared stacks of pages (and stamped numbers on them (Bates numbers)) while I poked 10-12 pages at a time behind the stack in the feeder and removed the out-pile. At one point we scanned over 200 pages without a stop. Stopping was an annoyance, as it took a few seconds to re-start. keeping track of which folder the pages came from resulted in some scrambles keeping up.

I did this using scanimage and SANE under linux, in a batch script which automatically numbered the scanned files (tif, or jpg or gif). We scanned 2450 pages in one day. All returned to their original file folders and made neater going out than they were coming in. Brother has software online for Windows and Mac.
THEN we had to review all the pages. That took a little longer!

You can turn the scans into pdfs with gscan2pdf (of no more than 10 pages), and ocr the pdfs at onlineocr.net for free. -> Voila!

Reply to  Dyspeptic Curmudgeon
February 7, 2023 8:19 pm

Standard copier paper sizes are not what the old weather records are written on. And much of that is likely the third of three pages with carbon paper to press the triplicate entry.

Copiers that self feed odd size and weight paper through at multiple pages per minute are not cheap and they weigh more than 2 pounds.

February 4, 2023 5:24 pm

Well done Jennifer. Methinks you have got them on the run. Any which way they look unscrupulous!

Reply to  nankerphelge
February 4, 2023 8:30 pm

Well said, we need to thank Jennifer and her IPA colleagues for pursuing the BoM on their fraudulent data monitoring and manipulation techniques, that make a mockery of climate science and forecasting using their inadequate new models.
The truth will out eventually, but can we wait that long whilst the country rapidly goes downhill due to alarmist BoM reports to Government that have precipitated the crazy ongoing decarbonisation policies, ruining our economy. It’s time for a Royal Commission of climate science as practiced by the BoM and CSIRO!

Dave Fair
February 4, 2023 7:46 pm

Private mediation to obtain government data?

B Zipperer
Reply to  Dave Fair
February 4, 2023 10:26 pm

Private mediation to coverup government data. Inconvenient data most likely.

Reminds me of all the actions the CCP took after the “Wuhan pneumonia”
(their initial term for the illness that became Covid-19) arrived to deflect
any responsibility: it just screamed coverup!

Captain Climate
February 6, 2023 3:00 am

Some over-the-hill marketing major who cosplays as a scientist told me you just have to take an anomaly and all of these problems go away…..

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