Poorly sited U.S. temperature instruments not responsible for artificial warming

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 5:57 PM GMT on January 25, 2010

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Former TV weatherman Anthony Watts, who runs the popular global warming contrarian website, "Watts Up With That", was convinced that many of the U.S. network of surface weather stations had serious flaws in their siting that was causing an artificial warm bias in the observed increase in U.S. temperatures of 1.1°F over the past century. To address this concern, Watts established the website surfacestations.org in 2007, which enlisted an army of volunteers to travel the U.S. to obtain photographic evidence of poor siting of weather stations. The goal was to document cases where "microclimate" influence was important, and could be contaminating temperature measurements. (Note that this is a separate issue from the Urban Heat Island, the phenomenon where a metropolitan area in general is warmer than surrounding rural areas). Watts' volunteers--650 strong--documented the siting of 865 of the 1,218 stations used in the National Climatic Data Center's U.S. Historical Climatology Network (USHCN) for tracking climate change. As reported in Watt's 2009 publication put out by the Heartland Institute, the volunteers "found stations located next to the exhaust fans of air conditioning units, surrounded by asphalt parking lots and roads, on blistering-hot rooftops, and near sidewalks and buildings that absorb and radiate heat." Watts surmised that these poorly-sited stations were responsible for much of the increase in U.S. temperatures over the past century, due to "a bias trend that likely results from the thermometers being closer to buildings, asphalt, etc." Watts concluded, "the U.S. temperature record is unreliable. And since the U.S. record is thought to be the best in the world, it follows that the global database is likely similarly compromised and unreliable".


Figure 1. A poorly sited temperature sensor in Marysville, California, used for the USHCN. The sensor is situation right next to an asphalt parking lot, instead in the middle of a grassy field, as it is supposed to be. The sensor is also adjacent to several several air conditioners that blow their exhaust into the air nearby. Image credit: surfacestation.org.

Analysis of the data disagrees with Watts' conclusion
While Watts' publication by the Heartland Institute is a valuable source of information on siting problems of the U.S. network of weather stations, the publication did not undergo peer-review--the process whereby three anonymous scientists who are experts in the field review a manuscript submitted for publication, and offer criticisms on the scientific validity of the results, resulting in revisions to the original paper or outright rejection. The Heartland Institute is an advocacy organization that accepts money from corporate benefactors such as the tobacco industry and fossil fuel industry, and publishes non-peer reviewed science that inevitably supports the interests of the groups paying for the studies. Watts did not actually analyze the data to see if taking out the poorly sited surface stations would have a significant impact on the observed 1.1°F increase in U.S. temperatures over the past century. His study would never have been publishable in a peer-reviewed scientific journal.


Figure 2. Annual average maximum and minimum unadjusted temperature change calculated using (c) maximum and (d) minimum temperatures from good and poor exposure sites (Menne 2010). Poor sites showed a cooler maximum temperature compared to good sites. For minimum temperature, the poor sites were slightly warmer. The net effect was a cool bias in poorly sited stations. The dashed lines are for stations ranked by NOAA, while the solid lines are for the stations ranked by surfacestations.org.

Fortunately, a proper analysis of the impact of these poorly-sited surface stations on the U.S. historical temperature record has now been done by Dr. Matthew Menne and co-authors at NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). In a talk at last week's 90th Annual Meeting of the American Meteorological Society, Dr. Menne reported the results of their new paper just accepted for publication in the Journal of Geophysical Research titled, On the reliability of the U.S. Surface Temperature Record. Dr. Menne's study split the U.S. surface stations into two categories: good (rating 1 or 2) and bad (ratings 3, 4 or 5). They performed the analysis using both the rating provided by surfacestations.org, and from an independent rating provided by NOAA personnel. In general, the NOAA-provided ratings coincided with the ratings given by surfacestations.org. Of the NOAA-rated stations, only 71 stations fell into the "good" siting category, while 454 fell into the "bad" category. According to the authors, though, "the sites with good exposure, though small in number, are reasonably well distributed across the country and, as shown by Vose and Menne [2004], are of sufficient density to obtain a robust estimate of the CONUS average". Dr. Menne's study computed the average daily minimum and maximum temperatures from the good sites and poor sites. The results were surprising. While the poor sites had a slightly warmer average minimum temperature than the good sites (by 0.03°C), the average maximum temperature measured at the poor sites was significantly cooler (by 0.14°C) than the good sites. As a result, overall average temperatures measured at the poor sites were cooler than the good sites. This is the opposite of the conclusion reached by Anthony Watts in his 2009 Heartland Institute publication.

Why did the poorly sited stations measure cooler temperatures?
The reason why the poorly-sites stations measured cooler temperatures lies in the predominant types of thermometers used at the two types of sites. An electronic Maximum/Minimum Temperature System (MMTS) is used at 75% of the poor sites. These MMTS sensors are attached by cable to an indoor readout device, and are consequently limited by cable length as to how far they can be sited from the building housing the indoor readout device. As a result, they are often located close to heated buildings, paved surfaces, air conditioner exhausts, etc. It turns out that these MMTS thermometers have a flaw that causes them to measure minimum temperatures that are slightly too warm, and maximum temperatures that are considerably too cool, leading to an overall cool bias in measured average temperatures. In contrast, only 30% of the "good" sites used the MMTS sensors. The "good" sites predominantly used Liquid in Glass (LiG) thermometers housed in wooden shelters that were more easily located further from the buildings where the observers worked. Since the poorly-sites stations were dominantly equipped with MMTS thermometers, they tended to measure temperatures that were too cool, despite their poor siting.


Figure 3. Comparison of U.S. average annual (a) maximum and (b) minimum temperatures calculated using USHCN version 2 temperatures. Temperatures were adjusted to correct for changes in instrumentation, station relocations, and changes in the time of observation, making the trend from good sites show close agreement with poor sites. Good and poor site ratings are based on surfacestations.org. For comparison, the data between 2004 - 2008 taken by the new high-quality U.S. Climate Reference Network (USCRN, black dashed line) is shown, and displays excellent agreement for that time period. Image credit: Menne 2010.

Independent verification of recent USHCN annual temperatures
Clearly, the siting of many of the surface stations used to track climate change in the U.S. is not good. To address this issue, in 2004 NOAA created the U.S. Climate Reference Network, a collection of 114 stations in the continental United States for the express purpose of detecting the national signal of climate change. The stations were sited and instrumented with climate studies in mind, and can provide an extremely high-quality independent check on the old USHCN network. Each of 114 stations at 107 locations (some stations were installed as nearby pairs) is equipped with very accurate instruments in a triplicate configuration so that each measurement can be checked for internal consistency. As shown in Figure 3, the USCRN air temperature departures for 2004 - 2008 are extremely well aligned with those derived from the USHCN version 2 temperature data. For these five years, the the difference between the mean annual temperatures measured by the old USHCN compared to the new USCRN was just 0.03°C, with a mathematical correlation coefficient (r-squared) of 0.997. Menne et al. concluded, "This finding provides independent verification that the USHCN version 2 data are consistent with research-quality measurements taken at pristine locations and do not contain spurious trends during the recent past even if sampled exclusively at poorly sited stations. While admittedly this period of coincident observations between the networks is rather brief, the value of the USCRN as a benchmark for reducing the uncertainty of historic observations from the USHCN and other networks will only increase with time". The authors finally concluded, "we find no evidence that the CONUS temperature trends are inflated due to poor siting".

Crediting Anthony Watts
The surfacestations.org effort coordinated by Anthony Watts has made a valuable contribution to science, helping us better understand the nature of the errors in the U.S. historical temperature data set. In his talk last week at the AMS conference, and in the credits of his paper, Dr. Menne had some genuinely grateful comments on the efforts of Anthony Watts and the volunteers of surfacestations.org. However, as of this writing, Watts has made no mention on surfacestations.org or on wattsupwiththat.com of Dr. Menne's study.

I'll have a new post Wednesday or Thursday.

Jeff Masters

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1079. Patrap


Im keeping one eye on the Miami meteogram for Feb 7th


Did anyone hear were going to da Super Bowl ?
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
here's my take
Good take but you might have too add another 3 zero digits to the timespan ;/
Member Since: September 22, 2005 Posts: 11 Comments: 2032
Quoting Patrap:
Im gonna go create a Micro Cauldron of Boiling H2o and Zatarains Seafood Burl and drop some Jumbo Large Shrimp into it and see if my Kitchen Temps rise in relation to my anticipation of eating dem sucka's..

I may even take pics and publish a peer reviewed entry on it.

Stay tuned,..


I can make a prediction: you are going to feel over-full shortly...LOL
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Quoting Patrap:
Im gonna go create a Micro Cauldron of Boiling H2o and Zatarains Seafood Burl and drop some Jumbo Large Shrimp into it and see if my Kitchen Temps rise in relation to my anticipation of eating dem sucka's..

I may even take pics and publish a peer reviewed entry on it.

Stay tuned,..


Argh. I cannot write a peer-reviewed entry on the current state of global warming because I don't have the prestigious university credentials.
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1075. Patrap
Sometimes BF,Levity is the Ointment of Brevity..

Plus Im learning to take a break when the monomania set in here too

..LOL
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Quoting atmoaggie:

Yeah, go ahead and throw some baseless accusations, sport. Helping me out a little in my resolve...

I am cashing in. The mumbled and jumbled is every bit of historical data used for "proof", so far.

I love how you guys, like our IPCC friends, know everything and make sure to tell us so, when the reality is, there is so little we know about our climate, it's natural and anthropogenic forcings, and the teleconnections of those forcings.


atmo, you and I have had this "argument" before and I respect your opinions given your firm grounding in science and your even disposition, but even you say: "...there is so little we know about our climate..." I wonder how you can be so totally skeptical of the whole CC idea; if you admit we know very little about it, what makes the anti-CC side that much more convincing for you?

By the way, the little ice-age you mention was caused in large part by the eruption of Tambora in 1815; it caused the "year without a summer" in the northern hemisphere and caused a substantial drop in global temperature...
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Quoting charlottefl:
I'm gonna chime in here, and this is not my argument FOR or AGAINST GW. It's an observation. Micro scale atmospheric events such as tornadoes, hurricanes, severe storms challenge us in their complexity. There is still much we don't understand about these events, and that's on a micro scale. To take such a concrete position on macro climate events that involve the mechanisms that drive our global climate, to say that we are CERTAIN of what is driving our apparent change in climate, and to ignore healthy discussion on the subject is presumptuous at best. I'm not saying to just AGREE with each other, just being willing to listen to the other point of view.(regardless of which side you fall on) It will benefit everyone.


Currently, it appears as if the micro-scale and macro-scale events are co-reinforcing. Global ocean currents are collapsing.
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Pat,

You just made my day! ROFL
Quoting Patrap:
Im gonna go create a Micro Cauldron of Boiling H2o and Zatarains Seafood Burl and drop some Jumbo Large Shrimp into it and see if my Kitchen Temps rise in relation to my anticipation of eating dem sucka's..

I may even take pics and publish a peer reviewed entry on it.

Stay tuned,..
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Wow.... more MIRACLES.
: )
Quoting Floodman:


That's incredible...Haitains have a hard bark on 'em, that's for sure!
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1070. Patrap
Im gonna go create a Micro Cauldron of Boiling H2o and Zatarains Seafood Burl and drop some Jumbo Large Shrimp into it and see if my Kitchen Temps rise in relation to my anticipation of eating dem sucka's..

I may even take pics and publish a peer reviewed entry on it.

Stay tuned,..
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1069. Grothar
Quoting charlottefl:
I'm gonna chime in here, and this is not my argument FOR or AGAINST GW. It's an observation. Micro scale atmospheric events such as tornadoes, hurricanes, severe storms challenge us in their complexity. There is still much we don't understand about these events, and that's on a micro scale. To take such a concrete position on macro climate events that involve the mechanisms that drive our global climate, to say that we are CERTAIN of what is driving our apparent change in climate, and to ignore healthy discussion on the subject is presumptuous at best. I'm not saying to just AGREE with each other, just to being willing to listen to the other point of view (regardless of which side you fall on) will benefit everyone.


You haven't been on here long, have you?
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1067. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
here's my take

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Quoting charlottefl:
I'm gonna chime in here, and this is not my argument FOR or AGAINST GW. It's an observation. Micro scale atmospheric events such as tornadoes, hurricanes, severe storms challenge us in their complexity. There is still much we don't understand about these events, and that's on a micro scale. To take such a concrete position on macro climate events that involve the mechanisms that drive our global climate, to say that we are CERTAIN of what is driving our apparent change in climate, and to ignore healthy discussion on the subject is presumptuous at best. I'm not saying to just AGREE with each other, just to be willing to listen to the other point of view (regardless of which side you fall on) will benefit everyone.

Than tell me charlotte, what point of view - which is opposit to the scientific consensus on climate change i should listen too, which not has been debunked?
Member Since: September 22, 2005 Posts: 11 Comments: 2032
I'm gonna chime in here, and this is not my argument FOR or AGAINST GW. It's an observation. Micro scale atmospheric events such as tornadoes, hurricanes, severe storms challenge us in their complexity. There is still much we don't understand about these events, and that's on a micro scale. To take such a concrete position on macro climate events that involve the mechanisms that drive our global climate, to say that we are CERTAIN of what is driving our apparent change in climate, and to ignore healthy discussion on the subject is presumptuous at best. I'm not saying to just AGREE with each other, just being willing to listen to the other point of view.(regardless of which side you fall on) It will benefit everyone.
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1064. Patrap
There is a Lot more to Knowing what occurred in the Past than Quoting this and that as one feels fit to "Glove" their point,..

..case in point,below

The Mysteries of Muck (and the Collapse of the Laurentide Ice Sheet)

Posted on Jan 14, 2010 04:05:03 AM | NASA's Earth Science News Team | 2 Comments


Peteet isn't poking around in the mud just for fun like my brothers and I did as kids, though. She's collecting bog cores and scrutinizing the bits of fossilized plants and animals, which can be dated quite precisely using radiocarbon techniques, that turn up in the cores. Her goal is to pinpoint the timing of the collapse of the Laurentide Ice Sheet, a massive block of ice that stretched as far as Long Island during the peak of the last ice age. With Arctic ice currently undergoing rapid retreat, sorting out how the Laurentide Ice Sheet collapsed has big implications for understanding how climate change might proceed.

By analyzing material from some of the first creatures to colonize glacial lakes after the ice retreated, such as those water fleas, Peetet can estimate the date the ice sheet collapsed. Her findings suggests that the collapse occurred about 15,000 years ago, which would put it five-to-ten thousand years later than other dating techniques (particularly one influential technique that involves dating the beryllium from boulders dropped by the retreating ice sheet).

"This was surprising, and it's generated some controversy," she told her colleagues. "I'd like to have your ideas about what's going on." To learn more about the topic, you can watch, listen, or view a pdf of Peetet's full presentation here.

Share your stories about exploring the muck in your neighborhood, your ideas on the dating controversy, and we'll make sure that Peteet sees them and posts a reply.


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Quoting P451:
Port-au-Prince, Haiti (CNN) -- A man was pulled from rubble in Haiti on Tuesday, two weeks after a 7.0-magnitude earthquake devastated much of the country, officials said.

The 31-year-old man, who had access to water, was in stable condition at a medical facility where he was being treated for a broken leg, medical and rescue officials told CNN.

The man was discovered by the U.S. Army's 82nd Airborne Delta Company during a rubble-clearing mission in the capital.



That's incredible...Haitains have a hard bark on 'em, that's for sure!
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1061. JeffMasters (Admin)
Quoting atmoaggie:
Dr. M: Scientific American contacted a random sample of 26 of the 1,400 signatories claiming to have a Ph.D. in a climate related science. Eleven said they agreed with the petition, six said they would not sign the petition today, three did not remember the petition, one had died, and five did not respond.

Wow, I didn't know that.

So throwing out the ones that didn't or couldn't answer, that would be 11 of 17 PhD-holders in a climate-related science that agreed? Wow. ~65%

That is a big difference to that 99.9% of climate scientists blog you posted a year ago, or so.

Of course, they contacted those that signed this petition and had a small sample size, but, wow. Seems not quite everyone is on board with that consensus...


Hi, keep in mind that a portion of those 65% were likely fooled by the letter accompanying the Petition, signed by the former president of the National Academy of Sciences. The letter was laid out to look like a peer-reviewed journal article from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, but was a fake that presented only the anti-global warming point of view.

The study I discussed appeared in the journal EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union. Fully 97% of the climate scientists who regularly publish on climate change agreed with the statement, "human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures".

I agree that we should not ignore the fact that there are a number of smart Ph.D.'s that are good scientists who do not agree with the IPCC position on climate change.

Jeff Masters
1060. Patrap
School kids verify NASA satellite observations

Most scientific observations are made by the most sophisticated of instruments. We build miles-long particle accelerators to see the smallest bits of atoms. We send bus-sized satellites all the way out to space to observe the dynamic interactions happening in our planet’s atmosphere.

Sometimes, though, a machine just won’t do. Sometimes a school kid looking up at the sky does the job quite well.

That is the premise of NASA’s S’COOL (Students’ Cloud Observations On-Line) project. While a satellite passes overhead observing the radiation emitted by Earth, S’COOL participants look upwards and take careful notes on the type and multitude of clouds in the sky.

This is not just for fun, and it's not just to get children and teens interested in the basics of atmospheric science. These observations are put to use by NASA scientists to verify that a satellite instrument overhead – the Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System (CERES) sensor – is accurately observing clouds from above. In some cases, CERES’ radiometers may interpret a glare or a land feature as a cloud. Student observations act as a “ground truthing” method to make sure the satellite is accurate.

The more observations, the better. In this regard, the gold star goes to the students at Chartiers-Houston Jr./Sr. High School in Houston, Pa. These students have made more than 5,000 all-time observations for the S’COOL folks at NASA’s Langley Research Center. (5,276 observations as of Jan.10, to be exact.) The number is a record and nearly the doubles the total reported by any other school.

The S’COOL program is beginning its 14th year and has inspired school children in more than 75 countries to take their cloud charts outside. Chartiers-Houston has long been among the most active in the program. Students can make observations anytime, but ideally they walk outside at the precise time that the satellite is passing over their town. They must know the types of clouds and know the recording methods to make useful observations. This requires, in other words, dedication.

Science teacher Gary Popiolkowski, who’s been leading students outside to look skyward since Aug. 2000, said he likes S’COOL because it allows students to get “involved doing real science, acting like real scientists.” He said his students even make observations after school and on weekends, on their own time.

“My students have developed a sense of pride in continuing our observations over the years,” he said. “Besides recording the scheduled observations, we also identify the clouds each period throughout the day as a daily class starter. S’COOL is integrated into our weather unit and fits into my philosophy of “no child left inside” as we constantly “look up” anytime we are outside.”

-- Patrick Lynch, NASA's Earth Science News Team
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Quoting OldLefty19081:

No, I'm talking about confirmed supporters of the petition. They could only confirm 11 out of 30, or 37%, of their sample. I don't think it would be particularly valid to make any assumptions about the non-respondants.

That is why I chose 17 total respondents in my post.
"Agree" and "would not sign today" adds up to 17. I did the math for you.

30 includes the non-respondents.
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1057. Grothar
Quoting charlottefl:
Wow, am I gonna need body gear to enter these discussions? Good evening everyone.


Smart guy! So how is your weather? Chilly here in Ft. Lauderdale.
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1056. Patrap
Richard Alley on Earth's Biggest Climate Control Knob

Scientists aren't known for being the savviest of public speakers, but Penn State's Richard Alley is that rare researcher who knows how to give a talk. Alley -- who's willing to sing, dance, and gesticulate vigorously to get a point across -- gave a lecture about carbon dioxide to an overflow crowd of scientists at the American Geophysical Union meeting this year that's well worth watching.

Blogger and University of Toronto computer scientist Steve Easterbrook has an excellent blow-by-blow of the talk, but the heart of it came down to this point, which Alley made on his last slide:

An increasing body of science indicates that CO2 has been the most important controller of Earth's climate.

If you want the details, (and the details are a pleasure to sit through in this case because of Alley's gregarious speaking style) AGU has posted video and slides of the full talk. Still want to know more about carbon dioxide? NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) released new details about the distribution of carbon dioxide in the troposphere, the region of Earth's atmosphere that is located between 5 to 12 kilometers, or 3 to 7 miles, above Earth's surface. (JPL also released a ten question quiz about the gas that you can access here).

Meanwhile, Alley participated in a NASA science update back in 2005 that explored the nature of sea level rise, a topic that NASA researchers continue to investigate and that you can explore interactively using our Sea Level Viewer.

--Adam Voiland, NASA's Earth Science News Team
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Quoting OldLefty19081:
"And I suppose no one wants to admit that it might have been receding when we tripped over it in 1910?"

Of course, without further data, it's just as likely that those glaciers were expanding up until we tripped over them in 1910. No?

No. They more likely have been receding since the last ice age. You do know the planet is older than 6000 years, right? And there are some natural fluctuations and the last cold period, called an ice age, was ~11,500 years ago.

One of those breaks in warming occurred in middle 1800s and is called the "little ice age". In 1910, our temps may still have been recovering from that one, too.

So, no, we have been warming, with some breaks for up to 11,500 years, thus, a glacier in Montana is far more likely to have been receding in 1910.
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Quoting Patrap:


Yea,,,spoken Like one who's been cashing in on a Certain debate...for how many years now?

Keep it all muddled and Jumbled,,it may work for some,but this dog dont hunt like a Jury Friend.

Yeah, go ahead and throw some baseless accusations, sport. Helping me out a little in my resolve...

I am cashing in. The mumbled and jumbled is every bit of historical data used for "proof", so far.

I love how you guys, like our IPCC friends, know everything and make sure to tell us so, when the reality is, there is so little we know about our climate, it's natural and anthropogenic forcings, and the teleconnections of those forcings.
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1052. NRAamy
most of this argument is going so far over my head, I'm getting neck strain trying to look up at it....

and before anyone tells me, "Well, then, why don't you just leave?!", here I go...

P.S. Don't forget to make a donation to Portlight!!!!!!
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1051. hydrus
Quoting Floodman:
1025.

No response? I'm not surprised...
I think Milankovitch had a reasonably solid theory as to why the Ice Ages occurred. But I believe there is more than one reason why Earth goes into a deep freeze.
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Quoting OldLefty19081:

You're not actually serious. They could only confirm that 11 out 30 signatures from self-identified climate scientists. If we extrapolated that to the whole list 1400 self-identified climate scientists, we would end up with something like 600 self-identified scientists confirmed as supporting the Oregon Petition. Of course, it's quite likely that the actual number of PhD's is considerably smaller than the self-identified group but we'll go with 600. So, 600 contrarians out of 20,000 climate scientists worldwide (as per the AGU) comes to a whopping 3%.

I'd feel pretty comfortable calling 97% a consensus.


Oh, you want to assume those that are dead or did not respond (for whatever reason) disagree with the petition...how cozy.

Whatever.
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1047. Patrap
Lefty brings out the best word of the day.
Consensus among the Mean.


One can beat the subject to death,but there is the warming,..Fact.

There is a driver,Co2 and other Fossil burning derived.. Pollutants,, Fact.

ALL the Climate Modeling recently published show the rate of warming increasing ...

at a faster rate than earlier runs showed.


Three facts to consider when going forward on this thread


And all being the "consensus" of the mean.
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Pseudo-science begets pseudo-insurance — and another phony attack on the IPCC is debunked
Climate change is the greatest risk facing the insurance industry


limate change is a fact, and it is almost entirely made by man. It is jointly responsible for the rise in severe weather-related natural disasters, since the weather machine is “running in top gear”. The figures speak for themselves: according to data gathered by Munich Re, weather-related natural catastrophes have produced US$ 1,600bn in total losses since 1980, and climate change is definitely a significant contributing factor. We assume that the annual loss amount attributable to climate change is already in the low double-digit billion euro range. And the figure is bound to rise dramatically in future.

Those are the words of the CEO of Munich Re, the world’s largest reinsurer, in December. The anti-science crowd tries to shout down any talk of a link between climate change and extreme weather but even the loudest shouter told the journal Nature back in 2006, “Clearly since 1970 climate change (i.e., defined as by the IPCC to include all sources of change) has shaped the disaster loss record.” Indeed, that Nature article reported four years ago:

At a recent meeting of climate and insurance experts, delegates reached a cautious consensus: climate change is helping to drive the upward trend in catastrophes.

The evidence has only gotten stronger in recent years. A major study published in 2009, “Tropical cyclone losses in the USA and the impact of climate change — A trend analysis based on data from a new approach to adjusting storm losses” concluded:

In the period 1971–2005, since the beginning of a trend towards increased intense cyclone activity, losses excluding socio-economic effects show an annual increase of 4% per annum. This increase must therefore be at least due to the impact of natural climate variability but, more likely than not, also due to anthropogenic forcings.

A 2009 NOAA-led report, Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States, identified a number of climate-related impacts that are occurring now and expected to increase in the future that could shape the disaster loss record:

Many phony charges are now being leveled at the IPCC because the anti-science crowd smells blood in the water, and many “journalists” are ready to repeat their nonsense (see “EXCLUSIVE: UN scientist refutes Daily Mail claim he said Himalayan glacier error was politically motivated.”

The newest phony charge came Sunday from another dubious source in the British press, “UN wrongly linked global warming to natural disasters.” But on Monday, the IPCC slammed the story as “misleading and baseless.” As the “IPCC statement on trends in disaster losses” explains

Read full article
http://climateprogress.org/2010/01/26/ipcc-scienceclimate-change-is-the-single-greatest-risk-facing -the-insurance-industry/
Member Since: September 22, 2005 Posts: 11 Comments: 2032
Quoting Patrap:


Quantifying that is easy as being a Lawyer,

or being a paid witness for the wind vs Water debate,..from a Hurricane Disaster.

..Not many Mammoths were driving Land Rovers by the Billions and pulling oil and coal out the ground and refining it 24/7/365 and well..you may get the pic,you may not.

And the USGS has a view as to whats occurring here,at Glacier National Park.

Glacier Monitoring Studies
Monitoring and Assessing Glacier Changes and Their Associated Hydrologic and Ecologic Effects in Glacier National Park


Purpose:

To systematically monitor changes in Glacier National Park’s namesake glaciers and to determine the causes of changes, assess their ecological and hydrological effects, and predict future changes and effects.
GPS data collection, Sperry Glacier, 2005, USGS Photo

Glacier National Park’s namesake glaciers have receded rapidly since the Park’s establishment in 1910, primarily due to long-term changes in regional and global climate. These changes include warming, particularly of daily minimum temperatures, and persistent droughts. This warming is ongoing and the loss of the Park’s glaciers continues, with the park’s glaciers predicted to disappear by 2030.

In the past decade, Glacier NP has experienced dramatic climate variability that includes record winter and summer droughts, near record summertime temperatures, as well as near-record winter snowfall. While the park’s glaciers continue to shrink, it is not clear whether these dramatic fluctuations have accelerated or slowed glacier recession and downwasting. In part this is because studies of glaciers in Glacier NP to date have focused on changes in the area of individual glaciers and the extent of glaciers in the park. Few measurements of glacier volume or mass have been made. Measurements of area alone can be misleading; changes in mass and/or ice flux can result in significant changes to the glacier and to streamflow below the glacier even when glacier area remains stable. Though hydrologic changes such as these can have important ecologic effects downstream of the glaciers, the nature and extent of changes in runoff volume, and stream temperature have not been measured or analyzed


Giving us a scary pic of what is going on as easy as being a lawyer.

So what are you trying to say? That this glacier is melting away and would not be if we were not here? Or that the rate has increased to more than it would be if there were no CO2 emissions?

I wonder if the melt rate coincides nicely with the PDO. And I suppose no one wants to admit that it might have been receding when we tripped over it in 1910?

Or maybe someone has claimed that Glacier National Park had exactly as much ice on the ground in 1910 as there was 12,000 years ago.

This is such a useless sub-topic...
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Wow, am I gonna need body gear to enter these discussions? Good evening everyone.
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1043. NRAamy
1031. flsky 3:06 PM PST on January 26, 2010
Is there any WEATHER going on today???


it just started raining in Southern California.
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1025.

No response? I'm not surprised...
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Quoting Floodman:


LOL...yes, they will be very pointy indeed!


Off-topic discussion! Lol.
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Quoting Patrap:


Quantifying that is easy as being a Lawyer,

or being a paid witness for the wind vs Water debate,..from a Hurricane Disaster.

..Not many Mammoths were driving Land Rovers by the Billions and pulling oil and coal out the ground and refining it 24/7/365 and well..you may get the pic,you may not.

And the USGS has a view as to whats occurring here,at Glacier National Park.

Glacier Monitoring Studies
Monitoring and Assessing Glacier Changes and Their Associated Hydrologic and Ecologic Effects in Glacier National Park

Purpose:

To systematically monitor changes in Glacier National Park’s namesake glaciers and to determine the causes of changes, assess their ecological and hydrological effects, and predict future changes and effects.
GPS data collection, Sperry Glacier, 2005, USGS Photo

Glacier National Park’s namesake glaciers have receded rapidly since the Park’s establishment in 1910, primarily due to long-term changes in regional and global climate. These changes include warming, particularly of daily minimum temperatures, and persistent droughts. This warming is ongoing and the loss of the Park’s glaciers continues, with the park’s glaciers predicted to disappear by 2030.

In the past decade, Glacier NP has experienced dramatic climate variability that includes record winter and summer droughts, near record summertime temperatures, as well as near-record winter snowfall. While the park’s glaciers continue to shrink, it is not clear whether these dramatic fluctuations have accelerated or slowed glacier recession and downwasting. In part this is because studies of glaciers in Glacier NP to date have focused on changes in the area of individual glaciers and the extent of glaciers in the park. Few measurements of glacier volume or mass have been made. Measurements of area alone can be misleading; changes in mass and/or ice flux can result in significant changes to the glacier and to streamflow below the glacier even when glacier area remains stable. Though hydrologic changes such as these can have important ecologic effects downstream of the glaciers, the nature and extent of changes in runoff volume, and stream temperature have not been measured or analyzed



Maybe they ought to call it Glacier Moraine National Park.
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Ozone is created by the division of oxygen molecules but absorbs solar rays in a different manner.

Wrong. UV causes a disassociation with O3 becoming O2 and O. Then they re-associate. This is nothing like CO2 bonds. Or the of IR absorption...the vibrational mode/rotational mode on a molecular level.
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Quoting hydrus:
Good Evening Flood. I hope you are doing well. Last time I posted you were very busy. If you have a moment, read post # 1021.


LOL...yes, they will be very pointy indeed!
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1036. Patrap
Quoting atmoaggie:

Good wording. That is my point.

And rates at which they recede being faster or slower than pre-industrial times isn't something we can determine reliably.


Quantifying that is easy as being a Lawyer,

or being a paid witness for the wind vs Water debate,..from a Hurricane Disaster.

..Not many Mammoths were driving Land Rovers by the Billions and pulling oil and coal out the ground and refining it 24/7/365 and well..you may get the pic,you may not.

And the USGS has a view as to whats occurring here,at Glacier National Park.

Glacier Monitoring Studies
Monitoring and Assessing Glacier Changes and Their Associated Hydrologic and Ecologic Effects in Glacier National Park


Purpose:

To systematically monitor changes in Glacier National Park’s namesake glaciers and to determine the causes of changes, assess their ecological and hydrological effects, and predict future changes and effects.
GPS data collection, Sperry Glacier, 2005, USGS Photo

Glacier National Park’s namesake glaciers have receded rapidly since the Park’s establishment in 1910, primarily due to long-term changes in regional and global climate. These changes include warming, particularly of daily minimum temperatures, and persistent droughts. This warming is ongoing and the loss of the Park’s glaciers continues, with the park’s glaciers predicted to disappear by 2030.

In the past decade, Glacier NP has experienced dramatic climate variability that includes record winter and summer droughts, near record summertime temperatures, as well as near-record winter snowfall. While the park’s glaciers continue to shrink, it is not clear whether these dramatic fluctuations have accelerated or slowed glacier recession and downwasting. In part this is because studies of glaciers in Glacier NP to date have focused on changes in the area of individual glaciers and the extent of glaciers in the park. Few measurements of glacier volume or mass have been made. Measurements of area alone can be misleading; changes in mass and/or ice flux can result in significant changes to the glacier and to streamflow below the glacier even when glacier area remains stable. Though hydrologic changes such as these can have important ecologic effects downstream of the glaciers, the nature and extent of changes in runoff volume, and stream temperature have not been measured or analyzed

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1035. hydrus
Quoting Floodman:
1025.

And your qualifications for making that last statement? Just curious when someone jumps down a phds throat...
Good Evening Flood. I hope you are doing well. Last time I posted you were very busy. If you have a moment, read post # 1021.
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1025.

And your qualifications for making that last statement? Just curious when someone jumps down a phds throat...
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Quoting rotarymunkey:

Hence my point about Dr. Masters' post belittling Watts' work... healthy skepticism is just that... healthy.

Yes, the number should be 0.04 percent. I forgot to carry the decimal point over in converting from millionths to hundredths. But you can't wildly and sensationally claim that CO2 at .04% works like water vapor at .5%. That's four hundredths versus fifty hundredths... Water vapor involved a change in a state of matter. CO2 absorbtion does not. CO2 also does not absorb heat for a length of time, but for just nanoseconds (because it does not change its state of matter). There are totally different properties of physics involved here.

The same can be said of Ozone, which involves the splitting of a molecule by UV radiation. Does a CO2 molecule split, or change its state of matter from a liquid to a gas, back to a liquid, and then a solid with an increase in height in the atmosphere?

Where's your proof of the acceleration of temp increase? What's your proof that this has never been seen before on this planet? I'll counter your argument with the Vostok ice core data, which shows temp increases and decreases on a much more rapid scale than we're seeing today.

For that matter, where's your proof of the financial payments from Big Oil to the skeptics? I'm a skeptic, and I could sure use some of that money being taken from my tax dollars to fund Hansen's research, or that of the NOAA!

How many SUVs did dinosaurs drive? How much coal did they burn? Are you actually saying that the presence of dinosaurs was enough to raise CO2 to levels far higher than all of the worst that mankind has been able to do in the last 200 years? Should be believe that the planet would be better off if we all stopped breathing?

I'll repeat my assertion (theory) once more that we have NOT seen a weather pattern yet in the duration of human existence which generates a mile-thick sheet of ice over North America. Therefore, we have NOT seen ALL that this planet can produce, and we CANNOT remotely claim that we alone are having any effect at all on these global-scale temperature swings. It's claimed that the Solar Minimum reduces output on the Earth by .1%. I say that's bull-hockey. We are just now learning the effect that the solar wind has on the expansion and contraction of the upper atmosphere, and how that might affect the atmosphere's ability to shed or retain heat. The claim that the Solar Minimum only affect the Earth's radiation input by .1% is inaccurate as there are more forces at work than we've divined so far.

In a nutshell, we don't know what causes ice ages, nor what causes them to end. These are events for which we have worldwide historical data, yet we're clueless. And you would have us believe that we're so much more knowledgeable about the behavior of a trace gas in our atmosphere which, until 2009, we didn't even know CLUMPS TOGETHER! We're supposed to believe in "greenhouse theory" when in fact, the physics of the theory run completely counter to the laws of physics. We're told to believe that CO2 "traps" heat like water vapor when it doesn't, and can't because it DOES NOT CHANGE ITS STATE OF MATTER.

GW is crap-science for people who didn't understand science the first time around in high school.


Skepticism is a fundamental part of science, but too much of it can prevent science from progressing. CO2 and other greenhouse gases do not split, but this doesn't prevent them from absorbing heat. Ozone is created by the division of oxygen molecules, but absorbs solar rays in a different manner.

When I mentioned an acceleration in the increase in global temperatures, I was referring to later this decade, when solar activity picks up (pushing global temperatures up another 0.1C) and positive feedbacks and oscillations take over before CO2 emissions increase again due to economic recovery. All the factors preventing the acceleration of warming in the past decade are being removed. It currently appears that the extremes are changing and accelerating more rapidly than the average temperatures, and it's the extremes that you really experience. Soon, we could have the warmest year on record, year after year, and the rate of change keeps on accelerating. Due to the temperature gradient decrease, the jet stream can send storms farther north and south than usual.

For the evidence on Bio Oil donating to skeptics, see Dr. Masters' entry on this, post #1389.

Dinosaurs did not create CO2 through their activities (although the sauropods' flatulence produced methane), but they lived in a time when CO2 concentrations were much higher than today. But CO2 simply does not vary as quickly as it is now, and temperatures usually do not change as abruptly all around the globe as they are now. Although the Earth has many times experienced warming more than it is today, and higher CO2 concentrations and larger catastrophes, both the rate and the degree of warming is unprecedented in human history, fact. Humans have seen interglacials and ice ages, but we have not seen the third "hot" state of the Earth, which is what we are getting ourselves into this century. With such a massive temperature change globally, ecosystems will shift, and more than half of all plant and animal species will die. This century. Almost within a human lifetime.

So far this winter, we have seen very erratic weather patterns, and the El Nino Modoki (likely a pattern caused by global warming) is at least partially responsible. The Gulf Stream has also meandered and stalled several times, as it did in 2004, and is repeatedly diverting west of Greenland, which is unprecedented. The ENSO warm pool recently came very close to cutting off the Humbodlt Current, the richest cold water current on Earth, but it did not occur as the Warm Pool receded, but this could simply be a sign of things to come, as this pattern could accelerate in intensity year after year, and it is no longer accurate to say that global warming is occuring every decade, but perhaps now every day or even every hour.

Also, where is your proof that atmospheric CO2 clumps together? At the low concentrations we have in the atmosphere, such a clumping would likely be difficult to acheive, and in addition would cause fatalities such as from the limic eruption from Lake Nyos in 1986. Observations in forests, mountaintops, near streams and in deserts show that the global distribution of CO2 is pretty much even, and that's why they had the observations on Mauna Kea.

Global warming denial is for people who do not understand that science is ever-evolving and progressive, and that paradigms change and shift over time.
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using glaciers to indicate climate is very much sound science. though it is difficult to categorize the variables involved in growth/receding when lumping all current glaciers in one group, you can get a valid 'litmus test' per se of the general climate conditions. study of glaciers is far more informative, with little controversy, than CO2 or temp levels when examining recent geological history. we can say some pretty certain things about the last 20,000 years there.
so no, a pic of detriot today and 12,000 years ago is completely irrelevant as a point when discussing whether the last 200 years of glacial activity was influenced by man. it is obvious such differences in detroit were well established natural cycles, and no single location can diagnose anything insofar as climate.
furthermore my remarks about the One pic comparison was explicitly about circumventing good analysis amidst a knee jerk reaction. both sides of the debate are guilty.
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1031. flsky
Is there any WEATHER going on today???
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NASA Climatologist Gavin Schmidt Discusses the Surface Temperature Record
NASA's Earth Science News Team: Every year, some of the same questions come up about the temperature record. What are they?

Gavin Schmidt: First, do the annual rankings mean anything? Second, how should we interpret all of the changes from year to year -- or inter-annual variability -- the ups and downs that occur in the record over short time periods? Third, why does NASA GISS get a slightly different answer than the Met Office Hadley Centre does? Fourth, is GISS somehow cooking the books in its handling and analysis of the data?

NASA: 2009 just came in as tied as the 2nd warmest on record, which seems notable. What is the significance of the yearly temperature rankings?

Gavin Schmidt: In fact, for any individual year, the ranking isn't particularly meaningful. The difference between the second warmest and sixth warmest years, for example, is trivial. The media is always interested in the annual rankings, but whether it’s 2003, 2007, or 2009 that’s second warmest doesn't really mean much because the difference between the years is so small. The rankings are more meaningful as you look at longer averages and decade-long trends.

NASA: Why does GISS get a different answer than the Met Office Hadley Centre [a UK climate research group that works jointly with the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia to perform an analysis of global temperatures]?

Gavin Schmidt: It’s mainly related to the way the weather station data is extrapolated. The Hadley Centre uses basically the same data sets as GISS, for example, but it doesn't fill in large areas of the Arctic and Antarctic regions where fixed monitoring stations don't exist. Instead of leaving those areas out from our analysis, you can use numbers from the nearest available stations, as long as they are within 1,200 kilometers. Overall, this gives the GISS product more complete coverage of the polar areas.

NASA: Some might hear the word "extrapolate" and conclude that you’re “making up” data. How would you reply to such criticism?

Gavin Schmidt: The assumption is simply that the Arctic Ocean as a whole is warming at the average of the stations around it. What people forget is that if you don't put any values in for the areas where stations are sparse, then when you go to calculate the global mean, you’re actually assuming that the Arctic is warming at the same rate as the global mean. So, either way you are making an assumption.

Which one of those is the better assumption? Given all the changes we’ve observed in the Arctic sea ice with satellites, we believe it’s better to assume the Arctic Ocean is changing at the same rate as the other stations around the Arctic. That’s given GISS a slightly larger warming, particularly in the last couple of years, relative to the Hadley Centre.

NASA: Many have noted that the winter has been particularly cold and snowy in some parts of the United States and elsewhere. Does this mean that climate change isn't happening?

Gavin Schmidt: No, it doesn't, though you can't dismiss people's concerns and questions about the fact that local temperatures have been cool. Just remember that there's always going to be variability. That's weather. As a result, some areas will still have occasionally cool temperatures — even record-breaking cool — as average temperatures are expected to continue to rise globally.

NASA: So what's happening in the United States may be quite different than what's happening in other areas of the world?

Gavin Schmidt: Yes, especially for short time periods. Keep in mind that that the contiguous United States represents just 1.5 percent of Earth's surface.

NASA: GISS has been accused by critics of manipulating data. Has this changed the way that GISS handles its temperature data?

Gavin Schmidt: Indeed, there are people who believe that GISS uses its own private data or somehow massages the data to get the answer we want. That's completely inaccurate. We do an analysis of the publicly available data that is collected by other groups. All of the data is available to the public for download, as are the computer programs used to analyze it. One of the reasons the GISS numbers are used and quoted so widely by scientists is that the process is completely open to outside scrutiny.

NASA: What about the meteorological stations? There have been suggestions that some of the stations are located in the wrong place, are using outdated instrumentation, etc.

Gavin Schmidt: Global weather services gather far more data than we need. To get the structure of the monthly or yearly anomalies over the United States, for example, you’d just need a handful of stations, but there are actually some 1,100 of them. You could throw out 50 percent of the station data or more, and you’d get basically the same answers. Individual stations do get old and break down, since they're exposed to the elements, but this is just one of things that the NOAA has to deal with. One recent innovation is the set up of a climate reference network alongside the current stations so that they can look for potentially serious issues at the large scale – and they haven't found any yet.

http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/gavin-schmidt.html#
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1029. bappit
GW is crap-science for people who didn't understand science the first time around in high school.

Let the churches fund GW research from now on...

This sounds like reasonable discussion to me. No argument here.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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