2000s: hottest decade on record; dangerous blizzard pounds Midwest

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:33 PM GMT on December 09, 2009

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The end of the decade is upon us, and this decade was the warmest decade on record, according to NOAA and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). The decade of the 2000s was 0.17°C (0.31°F) warmer than the 1990s, according to NOAA. The "official" scientific assessments on climate change, the IPCC reports, have been predicting that Earth's temperature rise should average about 0.19°C per decade, due to human-caused global warming. Thus, the warming over the past decade is about 10% below predictions--well within the uncertainties that natural variation in the climate can bring. Of course, one can look at shorter time periods and say that no warming is occurring. The hottest year on record globally was 1998, according to the UK's HadCRUT3 data set, and was 2005, according to the data sets maintained by NASA and NOAA. It is apparent from the plot of global temperature anomalies (Figure 1) that the global temperature rise has flattened out since 2005. One can correctly say that global temperatures have not increased since 2005. However, climate is measured on time scales of decades, so it is incorrect to say that the climate has not warmed since 2005. It is meaningless to any statement about climate on any time scale less than ten years. Thirty years is better, since the atmosphere has natural multi-decadal oscillations, and the solar cycle of 11 years is also important. Global average temperature oscillates 0.1°C between the maximum and minimum of the solar cycle, and we are currently in an unusually long minimum.


Figure 1. Change in global surface temperature anomaly as computed by NOAA (NCDC Dataset), NASA (GISS data set) and combined Hadley Center and Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia (UK) (HadCRUT3 data set). Uncertainty in the HadCRUT3 data is shown in gray. Image credit: WMO.

Mass front-page climate change editorial published in 45 countries
An unprecedented joint editorial urging action on climate change appeared in 56 newspapers in 45 countries yesterday. Many of the papers carried the editorial on the front page. The editorial began: "Unless we combine to take decisive action, climate change will ravage our planet, and with it our prosperity and security. The dangers have been becoming apparent for a generation. Now the facts have started to speak: 11 of the past 14 years have been the warmest on record, the Arctic ice-cap is melting and last year's inflamed oil and food prices provide a foretaste of future havoc. In scientific journals the question is no longer whether humans are to blame, but how little time we have got left to limit the damage. Yet so far the world's response has been feeble and half-hearted.". According to Editor & Publisher, the editorial was published in 20 languages including Chinese, Arabic and Russian. The text was drafted by the UK newspaper, The Guardian, in conjunction with editors from more than 20 of the papers involved. A number of U.S. papers supported the project and agreed with everything in the editorial, but only one--the Miami Herald--was brave enough to publish it.

Posts on the hacked climate scientists' emails
If you haven't read my posts on the hacked email affair, my attitude on the matter can best be summed up by a highly amusing political cartoon by Houston Chronicle cartoonist Nick Anderson. While an investigation is needed into whether the scientific data involved was properly withheld from other scientists, there is nothing in the hacked emails that affects the validity of any of the published peer-reviewed science on climate change. "Climategate" is a manufactured scandal designed to take attention away from the scientific consensus that human-caused global warming is responsible for most of the observed warming in recent decades, and that this warming will increase dramatically in coming decades. My posts on the affair:

Don't shoot the messenger
Embattled UK climate scientist steps down
The Manufactured Doubt industry and the hacked email controversy
Is more CO2 beneficial for Earth's ecosystems?

Ricky Rood in Copenhagen
Our Climate Change expert, Dr. Ricky Rood, is in Copenhagen for the COP15 climate change summit. Check out his blog over the next two weeks to hear an insider's view of what's going on.

Major winter storm blasts the Plains and Western U.S.
It's a bad day to be in Iowa, unless you happen to be a polar bear. I'll back up that startling claim with some hard data: at 4:35 am CST, Carroll, Iowa reported heavy snow, sustained winds of 38 mph, gusting to 48, visibility 350 yards, a temperature of 9°F, and a windchill of -17°F. The mighty storm responsible was centered over Lake Michigan this morning, and is bringing blizzard conditions to Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and northern Michigan. The storm has brought very high winds to large portion of the country. Sustained winds of 53 mph, gusting to 77 mph were reported in Ruidiso, New Mexico yesterday afternoon, and hurricane-force wind gusts were reported in Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas yesterday. A peak gust of 105 mph was reported in Texas' Guadeloupe Mountains. Heavy rain from the storm has also brought localized flooding to California, Arizona, and Louisiana.

Some snow amounts from the storm so far (with distances in miles from the city included, where appropriate):

...ARIZONA...
FLAGSTAFF 7.8 SSW 30.4
JACOB LAKE 24.0
WILLIAMS 0.4 SW 20.0
GRAND CANYON SOUTH RIM 18.0

...CALIFORNIA...
KIRKWOOD SKI AREA 48.0
ALPINE MEADOWS 45.0
SODA SPRINGS 40.0
KINGVALE 1.3 WSW 37.0
NORTHSTAR 36.0
CISCO 5 ENE 35.0
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE 8 SSW 31.0
MAMMOTH LAKES 14.0

...COLORADO...
PAGOSA SPRINGS 9.1 NNW 33.0
CARBONDALE 8.2 S 24.8
CRESTED BUTTE 6.2 N 24.5
DURANGO 24.0
BAYFIELD 7 N 23.5
DOLORES 22 NE 23.0
GREELEY 2.3 SE 22.0
PAGOSA SPRINGS 3 SE 22.0

...IDAHO...
WESTON 4.0
POCATELLO AIRPORT 3.7
BOISE 6.7 SE 3.5

...KANSAS...
MARYSVILLE 14.0
LINCOLN 5 NE 12.0
CONCORDIA 5 SSE 11.0
HAYS 13 WNW 9.0
SALINA 8.0
ABILENE 5 SSW 7.0
MANHATTAN 7.0

...NEBRASKA...
TECUMSEH 13.5
ORD 12.0
OMAHA 3 N 8.6
KEARNEY 8.0
INDIANOLA 6.0

...NEW MEXICO...
LAS VEGAS 8.4 NW 8.0
SANTA FE 3.3 NE 5.5
TAOS PUEBLO 2.8 NW 5.2
GALLUP 8.1 NNW 4.8

...NEVADA...
HEAVENLY VALLEY 34.0
MT ROSE SKI AREA 23.0
CARSON CITY 1.3 NW 18.0
RENO 7.1 N 13.7
SUN VALLEY 0.9 N 10.5

...SOUTH DAKOTA...
SIOUX FALLS 6.0

...UTAH...
VERDUE 8 WNW 25.0
SPRINGDELL 23.0
ORDERVILLE 19.0
SPRINGVILLE 10.0

...WYOMING...
SAND LAKE 11.0
DIVIDE PEAK 9.0
LARAMIE 27.3 WSW 6.0
CHEYENNE 26.7 NE 4.3

Next post
I'll have a new post Thursday; there's a lot going on.

Jeff Masters

Snow in Angels Camp. (Isolino)
Woke up this morning to snow. We don't get snow in Angels Camp very often. It made for some difficult driving.
Snow in Angels Camp.
Frost (thebige)
More frost on our car. This photo wasn't cropped or edited.
Frost

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89. almost as much fun as tunnels! LOL
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Quoting Grothar:


Thanks mia!!! But it just can't be correct. I bet the NWS is just making us believe it is that warm. It is probably around 25 deg, but they just want us to believe it warm. You know how they all lie. I bet it is actually snowing there and they are just telling you all it is warm to lure the tourists to extract money from them. Probably all the palm trees are just plastic and there really are not palm trees in Florida. It is all an illusion perpetrated by the aristocratic-elitist, liberal-money grabbing politicians who are trying to impose their tyrannical grip over us.

Hey, I think I am getting pretty good at this!!
Do I sound like anyone familiar to the rest of you?????????


LOL! Get em Groth!
Member Since: August 28, 2006 Posts: 6 Comments: 2899
Quoting Ossqss:


Das ist zu lustig !!!


ich bin mit Ihnen einverstanden
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2. Tornadodude....have you seen the latest images in the snow loop you posted? there are circles around some of the cities! must be UHIE! LOL
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Quoting trinigal:


Hey, even when English is your mother tongue, some of these posts don't make sense :)



Das ist zu lustig !!! :)
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85. ...I could get a good look at a steak....

LMAO
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Quoting pearlandaggie:
75. at least you haven't determined that the islands were 50% below sea level...LOL

(this is in reference to the now infamous 50% below sea level post several months back)

:)


Yes, and for which tornadodude and a few others have never let go. We should perhaps keep that quote by the "unknown blogger" as the quote of the year. We have had more fun wringing the humor out of that than re-runs of "I Love Lucy"
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting pearlandaggie:
84. yeah, i was too lazy to put all that German into a translator...but i think i picked up something about Copenhagen being under water! LOL


LOL well not the city, the conference!
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87. RJY
Official temperature records have been kept for only a little over 200 years. The earth is 4.5 billion years old. As far as temperature goes, we are missing a huge amount of the data set. Just because the last decade was the warmest since the late 1700 doesn't mean a damn thing.

Any temperature data prior is nothing but estimates based on models and other (and we're finding out more and more) on obscure data.

Yet, here we are, with governments wanting to impose regulation based on "magic"

What the EPA and the Obama administration did the other day is appauling to say the very least. C02 is a dangerous gas they say??????

Well, I don't want any to breath around me and I guess all of the plant life on the face of the earth will be dying.

WHAT A DAMN JOKE THIS ALL IS
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84. yeah, i was too lazy to put all that German into a translator...but i think i picked up something about Copenhagen being under water! LOL
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Quoting pearlandaggie:
46. it's my favorite Christmas movie as well. many people, however, don't like it/don't get it or have never seen it :)

Yes, these must be the same people who don't realize that "Tommy Boy" is a classic!

Tommy Boy 1995

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Quoting pearlandaggie:
75. at least you haven't determined that the islands were 50% below sea level...LOL

(this is in reference to the infamous 50% below sea level post several months back)

:)


oh haha well we covered that already in our German :P

still funny tho!
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Quoting NRAamy:
I can count to 12 in German...which is not helping me at all in translating the posts on here!!!!!!!


Only if you want to buy doughnuts in Berlin! You would only be able to get a dozen.
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Quoting trinigal:


Hey, even when English is your mother tongue, some of these posts don't make sense :)



truer words have never been spoken... :P haha
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75. at least you haven't determined that the islands were 50% below sea level...LOL

(this is in reference to the now infamous 50% below sea level post several months back)

:)
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Quoting pearlandaggie:
72. stop applying logic...just stop it...now! LOL


LOL sorry! It must be this college thing... I think it's getting to me haha

oh Grothar, I am tking a class next semester called "German Folk and Fairy Tales"
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Quoting Grothar:


Ich habe mehr. As you know TD, I have never, never written in another language on here, because it is rude. However, for the past few weeks I have been reading the blogs in English and have not been able to understand any of it. I know they are English words, but the sentences do not make sense. The content makes even less sense. Therefore, I figured it would do know harm to post a sentence or two in another language. At least, perhaps I could have the pleasure of reading something I could understand and perhaps someone else as well.


Hey, even when English is your mother tongue, some of these posts don't make sense :)

Member Since: August 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 171
I can count to 12 in German...which is not helping me at all in translating the posts on here!!!!!!!
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72. stop applying logic...just stop it...now! LOL
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Quoting trinigal:


Ja, ich war dolmetscherin bei der US Army.


ich werde sehr beeindruckt.
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Quoting trinigal:


Ich glaube das auch. Sie machen eine lustige. :)


Danke, sehr!. How is school trini? Haven't seen you post in a long time. Are the islands shrinking where you are, or is everything still above water? As a few of us old-timers have determined, 50% of the worlds oceans are already under water.
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71. well, that's because your livelihood depends on the accuracy of your instrumentation (if i correctly recall your profession). instrumentation deviations in your field make people mad and probably cost you money :)
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Quoting tornadodude:


ich wußte nicht, daß Sie Deutsches sprachen


Ja, ich war dolmetscherin bei der US Army.
Member Since: August 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 171
Quoting pearlandaggie:
63. oh, my.... LOL


LOL well it makes sense, right?
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A question about the measuring equipment used to find a 0.17 degree rise in temperatures. What is the accuracy range of the equipment used to make the measurements? I have found through experience for comparative measurements one must use the same device to take all the readings and verify calibration before and after taking the readings.
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Quoting Grothar:


Ich habe mehr. As you know TD, I have never, never written in another language on here, because it is rude. However, for the past few weeks I have been reading the blogs in English and have not been able to understand any of it. I know they are English words, but the sentences do not make sense. The content makes even less sense. Therefore, I figured it would do know harm to post a sentence or two in another language. At least, perhaps I could have the pleasure of reading something I could understand and perhaps someone else as well.


Yeah, I know exactly what you mean. If I post in another language, and someone wants to know what it says, I will gladly tell them what it says and provide them with a translator website so they can verify it
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Quoting miajrz:
56. LOL!!


Ditto. But Grothar, I'm not sure which poster you sound like because I have my filter set on "Below Average" and the blog is so much better now!

Correction from earlier: 32-C is for amusement of those trapped in house by inclement weather or tired of CC/AGW posts posts posts posts posts posts posts posts posts
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Quoting Grothar:


Thanks mia!!! But it just can't be correct. I bet the NWS is just making us believe it is that warm. It is probably around 25 deg, but they just want us to believe it warm. You know how they all lie. I bet it is actually snowing there and they are just telling you all it is warm to lure the tourists to extract money from them. Probably all the palm trees are just plastic and there really are not palm trees in Florida. It is all an illusion perpetrated by the aristocratic-elitist, liberal-money grabbing politicians who are trying to impose their tyrannical grip over us.

Hey, I think I am getting pretty good at this!!
Do I sound like anyone familiar to the rest of you?????????

Hehe. I think you might be mocking me until I got to the fancy political words...

What I would like to see in these statements is inclusion of something like "since records began in year XXXX".

And that answer in this case would be "since records began in Ft. Lauderdale in 1943".

http://www4.ncdc.noaa.gov/cgi-win/wwcgi.dll?wwDI~GetCity~USA
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12463
Quoting tornadodude:


das ist ziemlich profund


Ich habe mehr. As you know TD, I have never, never written in another language on here, because it is rude. However, for the past few weeks I have been reading the blogs in English and have not been able to understand any of it. I know they are English words, but the sentences do not make sense. The content makes even less sense. Therefore, I figured it would do know harm to post a sentence or two in another language. At least, perhaps I could have the pleasure of reading something I could understand and perhaps someone else as well.
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63. oh, my.... LOL
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Quoting CaneWarning:


Yes, that is the information I'm looking for. I want actual measured information.


I hear you. My graduate work was in biogeography. I take these things quite seriously.
Member Since: August 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 171
Quoting trinigal:


Ich glaube das auch. Sie machen eine lustige. :)


ich wußte nicht, daß Sie Deutsches sprachen
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It is apparent from the plot of global temperature anomalies (Figure 1) that the global temperature rise has flattened out since 2005. One can correctly say that global temperatures have not increased since 2005. However, climate is measured on time scales of decades, so it is incorrect to say that the climate has not warmed since 2005. It is meaningless to any statement about climate on any time scale less than ten years.

so using a small time period is a bad idea?

anyone see the irony in this?
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Quoting tornadodude:


das ist ziemlich profund


Ich glaube das auch. Sie machen eine lustige. :)
Member Since: August 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 171
g'mornin' Amy :)
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unless we can get a time machine and go back....way back in time....how can we say the 2000's were the hottest decade? When did we start recording the weather? I mean, come on...it's very misleading info....
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46. it's my favorite Christmas movie as well. many people, however, don't like it/don't get it or have never seen it :)
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56. LOL!!
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Quoting NRAamy:
the OC is freezing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Come over to Tampa. It's HOT here.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting miajrz:
Grothar, this is for you:
Statement as of 9:10 am EST on December 9, 2009

... Record high minimum temperature tied at Fort Lauderdale...

A record high minimum temperature of 74 degrees was tied at Fort
Lauderdale this morning. This ties the old record high minimum
temperature of 74 set back in 2004, 1986 and 1953.
There is a slight chance that the temperature may drop below 74
degrees after sunset and before midnight tonight, which could affect
this record.

Miami NWS has us going for records highs today/tomorrow, current forecast 88 this afternoon.


Thanks mia!!! But it just can't be correct. I bet the NWS is just making us believe it is that warm. It is probably around 25 deg, but they just want us to believe it warm. You know how they all lie. I bet it is actually snowing there and they are just telling you all it is warm to lure the tourists to extract money from them. Probably all the palm trees are just plastic and there really are not palm trees in Florida. It is all an illusion perpetrated by the aristocratic-elitist, liberal-money grabbing politicians who are trying to impose their tyrannical grip over us.

Hey, I think I am getting pretty good at this!!
Do I sound like anyone familiar to the rest of you?????????
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
the OC is freezing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I don't get it.

In October of this year (just two months ago), when questioned about the lack of warming this decade, the MET said that temperatures have never progressed in a straight line, and that warming is set to resume quickly and strongly.
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Quoting NRAamy:
How many decades of record do we have, just curious. I think widespread recording didn't really happen until recently

exactly!! I don't think the dinos kept records...


It was very hard for them to do so with such tiny arms.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting trinigal:


Wouldn't you love to see the percentage of overall years they have on record? I'm talking on actual record...not extrapolated values because that science is continuously evolving and changing (did Mt. St. Helens teach us nothing?)


Yes, that is the information I'm looking for. I want actual measured information.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
How many decades of record do we have, just curious. I think widespread recording didn't really happen until recently

exactly!! I don't think the dinos kept records...
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Quoting CaneWarning:


How many decades of record do we have, just curious. I think widespread recording didn't really happen until recently.


Wouldn't you love to see the percentage of overall years they have on record? I'm talking on actual record...not extrapolated values because that science is continuously evolving and changing (did Mt. St. Helens teach us nothing?)
Member Since: August 31, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 171
Quoting Grothar:


Villeicht die Konferenz aber nicht Die Stadt!! LOL


das ist ziemlich profund
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Quoting NRAamy:
pearl, junky, and cane too!

:)


Hey Amy. How is the O.C. today?
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting NRAamy:
pearl, junky, and cane too!

:)


Mornin! How are ya feeling today?
Member Since: August 28, 2006 Posts: 6 Comments: 2899
Quoting NRAamy:
Grothar, Tdude, and Awake!

:)


GOOD MORNING, AMY et al.
Please check out 32(c) (before I get banished to JVF/WS land. I just can't stop watching it, Taz the Terrible Terrier is mesmerized. We're easily amused. Anyway, it has the Pearland seal of approval...for what that's worth (uh, snark).

ADD: Pearland, I think that's prob. my favorite Christmas movie, LOL!
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Quoting tornadodude:


das ist seltsam. ist es 50% unterhalb des Meeresspiegels?


Villeicht die Konferenz aber nicht Die Stadt!! LOL
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About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.