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« Taking Morgan | Main | Land use not climate change »
Wednesday
Jan222014

Still a standstill

David Whitehouse, writing at the GWPF, notes the release of 2013 surface temperature data from NOAA and NASA. Depending on your predelictions this can be headlined as "Fourth hottest ever!!!" or, as I have done "Still a standstill".

When asked for an explanation for the ‘pause’ by reporters Dr Gavin Schmidt of NASA and Dr Thomas Karl of NOAA spoke of contributions from volcanoes, pollution, a quiet Sun and natural variability. In other words, they don’t know...

Given that the IPCC estimates that the average decadal increase in global surface temperature is 0.2 deg C, the world is now 0.3 deg C cooler than it should have been.

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Reader Comments (93)

They gleefully talk about the first, second, etc warmest year, but there is only 0.09 degrees C of anomaly between all 10!!!!

How do these people sleep at might and why are they called scientists?

Jan 22, 2014 at 1:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterCharmingQuark

Roger Harrabin was quick this lunchtime to point out how all the hottest years have occurred this century, but of course there was no mention of the "hiatus".

Jan 22, 2014 at 1:37 PM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

A flat line does rather falsify a theory predicting an exponential line.

Jan 22, 2014 at 1:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterAC1

So that's about 15 years of accumulated wrongth.

If Roger Harrabin's absolute wages changed at the rate global temperatures do, he would soon learn to spell words like stagnation, even as the cash-strapped(?) BBC told him they were the 4th highest they had ever drone drone drone....

Jan 22, 2014 at 1:51 PM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

Ah, the hottest decade on record nonsense raises its head once again.

Under the alarmists metric it is possible for every successive decade of this century to be the "hottest" on record and yet result in a century long increase in GAT of a whole +0.10C!

Does that instill alarm in you? No, well it should do! The "hottest" decade on record is a meme banded about by such leaders of the scientific community as the Met Office's Chief Scientist and that really is cause for alarm.

Jan 22, 2014 at 1:51 PM | Registered CommenterGreen Sand

Use of the word 'hottest' is in itself designed to frighten and cause concern. 'Hot' is painful to the touch. 'Warm', meanwhile, is all cosy and snuggly, and not at all scary.

So, HOTTEST!!! it is, then.

Jan 22, 2014 at 1:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterCheshirered

"Still a standstill".

But according to Richard Betts research project -

"HELIX: (High-End cLimate Impacts and eXtremes)
With the target of limiting global warming to 2ºC increasingly difficult to achieve, policymakers, businesses and other decision-makers need to plan to adapt to changes in climate under higher levels of global warming....

Since international climate policy often frames climate change in terms of levels of global warming relative to pre-industrial state, our research will focus on addressing the questions:
•“What do 4ºC and 6ºC worlds look like compared to 2ºC?”
•“What are the consequences of different adaptation choices?” "

http://geography.exeter.ac.uk/staff/index.php?web_id=Richard_Betts&tab=research

(Hat tip - Hilary)

Now to put that into context take the graph produced on page 4 of their 2009 climate change brochure and extrapolate to 4C and 6C !!!!!!!! ......

http://www.worcester.gov.uk/fileadmin/assets/pdf/Environment/climate_change/DECC-MET-office-warming-brochure.pdf

...... and wonder at how exactly they purport to justify these scenarios - perhaps with floor to ceiling error bars!!!

Jan 22, 2014 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterMarion

Harrabin, a licentious and shameless climate pornography merchant whose vital statistics don't match the hype - hot imagery, like all fantasy never does.

Put a sock in it Rog' or one of these fine days, someone might arrange it thus - down with the BBC it is time to end its mendacious monopoly of bias, propaganda and lie, after lie, after lies.

Jan 22, 2014 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

Global average temperature about 14 deg C about 57 deg F. Not even warm.

Jan 22, 2014 at 2:18 PM | Unregistered Commenterson of mulder

Jan 22, 2014 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered Marion

The MET Office brochure seems to have been printed in 2009, but it shows the temperature only up to 2000, thereby hiding the fact that warming had already stopped.

It came out just before the big Copenhagen meeting. At that time there was only 50 days left to save the planet. That presumably explains why today’s politicians are living in a totally different world.

Jan 22, 2014 at 2:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterMark Well

After decades of spending masses of taxpayers' money on the study of climate change, would anyone care if the Met Office Hadley Centre was shut down? Would anyone miss it?

The BBC news group should be shut down and the funding used to create independent and competing news providers with strict rules on impartiality.

Jan 22, 2014 at 2:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterSchrodinger's Cat

Would the BBC ever have the guts to put Roger Harrabin alongside David Whitehouse to debate global temperatures?
No because it would indicate Harrabin's bias and lack of knowledge and the BBC's stupidity to have ever let Whitehouse go who was by light years their best ever science correspondent.

Jan 22, 2014 at 3:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterLucyD

I watched potato-Ed the other day, one sentence keeps ringing in my mind, [paraphrasing from memory] "is the single most important issue facing mankind" - can't remember the first bit.

"Single most important issue facing mankind"?

Depends where you are I guess, if you live on the breadline in India - finding the next meal is going to be "single most important issue".

Whereas, here in the UK - my "single most important issue facing mankind" - when will one single politician tell the truth, are we ever going to hear the truth emanating from the mouths of any or heaven forfend - all politicians?

Schrodingers cat alludes to one of the others:

"After decades of spending masses of taxpayers' money on the study of climate change, would anyone care if the Met Office Hadley Centre was shut down? Would anyone miss it?"

Shut down, yesterday would not be quick enough.

Ask yourself, would mankind miss diarrhoea?

Jan 22, 2014 at 3:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

The BBC news group should be shut down and the funding used to create independent and competing news providers with strict rules on impartiality.
Jan 22, 2014 at 2:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterSchrodinger's Cat

That's an interesting idea, SC, a solution I hadn't considered.

Jan 22, 2014 at 3:26 PM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

Is it actually possible to have an accurate measure of a mean global temperature. Accepting that it might be, exactly how long have "these records" been running, err and adjusted in the ~5bn years of the Earths climate.

Anyway, policies adopted for the UK should rely on what is happening to the climate of the UK not global.

Depending if you would like the UK 1659 version of CET, 2013 was the 54th warmest (0.03C/decade) or the 1850 version CET it was the 37th warmest (0.05C/decade).

And more for the politicians and BBC, there has been no statistically significant warming in the UK for 23 years. (in fact it has been cooling slightly for 21 years).

Jan 22, 2014 at 4:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterNeilC

"climate pornography"

Now I understand Harrabin's job - he's a fluffer!

Jan 22, 2014 at 4:51 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

The explanation of the hiatus is quite simple. Real AGW in the 1980s and 1990s was from Asian aerosols (a product of industrialisation) reducing cloud albedo. The increased SW heating of the oceans led to the rise in OHC. The IPCC crew thought this was CO2-AGW but that is kept near zero by atmospheric process. Related processes have also reacted to allow the excess warming of the oceans to dissipate. We are now heading into substantial cooling as low solar activity takes over, In about 15 years' time, the same atmospheric processes that prevented overheating will stop overcooling.

Because the signal will be substantial increase in water vapour content in the middle troposphere, the surviving warmists will state that they have always been right.

Jan 22, 2014 at 5:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterMydogsgotnonose

and wonder at how exactly they purport to justify these scenarios - perhaps with floor to ceiling error bars!!!

They don't seek to justify them. That's the point. They don't have to. The press don't ask.

Jan 22, 2014 at 5:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

The standstill in global temperatures was predicted by the Met Office model.

(Richard Betts, Met Office)

Jan 22, 2014 at 5:53 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

Headlines, headlines, headlines!

Why would "fourth hottest ever" take precedent over " Temperatures still at a standstill"???????????

Would it be to justify previous years of BS?

Jan 22, 2014 at 5:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartyn

Does no one, apart from people who comment here, have any concept of measurement uncertainty? That tiny fractions of a degree are trotted out as evidence for the "hottest" this or the "coldest" that, is nothing short of ridiculous.

I would have thought that the IPCC’s “ … exhibiting almost no linear trend including the warming hiatus since 1998. The rate of warming over 1998–2012 (0.05°C [–0.05 to +0.15] per decade) …” (AR5) would suffice (the use of “hiatus” excepted).

The NAMAS and then UKAS calibration laboratory I used to run could claim +/- 0.005C for its best measurement capability, but for most normal, practical measurements we claimed +/- 0.1C. These were measurements made in laboratories under controlled conditions with regularly calibrated instruments. My gut feel tells me that +/- 1C would not be an unreasonable guess of the uncertainty of measurement of global temperature.

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterDrJohnGalan

Martyn: try to point that out over in the Guardian and find out how tetchy they are!

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

These rankings are meaningless because the difference between the years is less than the error bars.
Some of these so-called scientists need a remedial course in basic science.

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:14 PM | Registered CommenterPaul Matthews

Thanks for the suggestion RR unfortunately I'm busy watching the grass grow at the moment.

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:17 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartyn

My gut feel tells me that +/- 1C would not be an unreasonable guess of the uncertainty of measurement of global temperature.
Jan 22, 2014 at 7:05 PM DrJohnGalan

Would that be before or after the measurements have been 'homogenised' (by undocumented procedures) by the heroes at the UEA?

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:23 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

The standstill in global temperatures was predicted by the Met Office model.

(Richard Betts, Met Office)

Jan 22, 2014 at 5:53 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

As was his BS.

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

The standstill in global temperatures was predicted by the Met Office model.

(Richard Betts, Met Office)

Jan 22, 2014 at 5:53 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

They clarified this statement recently. As the great SteveMc would say "watch the pea ". They said (my interpolation) that when they run their model(s) they get periods of 'near' flatline temperatures. Sadly they were asked to define those periods and said " not necessarily at the same time as the reality". So you see, their models approximately flatline but never when the real climate does.

There you go. Easy. Keep sending Betts your taxes so he can play with his adaption and climate forecast, projection, prediction models. Simples !

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

That's an interesting idea, SC, a solution I hadn't considered.

Jan 22, 2014 at 3:26 PM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

That is a great solution. Then, the new private company can do what the french national TV has done and outsource all weather and climate forecast to a private company as well. They could shut down to cr@p organisations in one fel swoop.

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

Martin,

I believe NASA itself is also not above making past temps cooler without explanation. Once upon a time 1932 (or there abouts) was the hottest year on record. Now...not so much thanks to Hansens magic fingers!

Mailman

Jan 22, 2014 at 8:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

Even if it is the 'fourth hottest' (since whenever), at most it shows there's been some GW, it doesn't show what proportion (if any) is AGW and it certainly blows a hole in the theory of CAGW.

The scietivists and their followers certainly like to blur the line between natural (inter-glacial) warming and mann-made (CO2) warming.

As AC1 said above, wasn't CAGW supposed to be exponential? Wasn't the rate of warming (faster than EVER) supposed to be the proof that CO2 was the cause?

Jan 22, 2014 at 9:40 PM | Unregistered Commenterjaffa

Jan 22, 2014 at 7:23 PM | Martin A

Would that be before or after the measurements have been 'homogenised' (by undocumented procedures) by the heroes at the UEA?

Before. A line item called “homogenise” was missing from our uncertainty budgets (and it is difficult imagining how it could even have been discussed with a UKAS assessor).

It is really striking when you see the so-called corrections plotted over time, e.g. this one:
http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=1zfrn1l&s=5#.UuBGKrs1jDd

Jan 22, 2014 at 10:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterDrJohnGalan

NOAA spoke of contributions from volcanoes

Another irony in a year of glorious ironies. Nature seems to have it in for these guys. The last decade has been remarkably unexciting from the volcano aerosol perspective, and 2013 was a bust. Here's a comment from a speciality volcano blog I saw a few days ago:

It is now quite clear how uneventful 2013 were for us volcano-lovers. Week after week we at Volcanocafé had to work hard to find something to write about, so we more and more explored out into long articles about volcanoes. In the end we started a series intended to cover entire North America so that we would be sure to have enough to write about. But, even though Kamchatka did its part 2013 was an eruption-dud.

Dr Schmidt is going to have to find another excuse, like the one where CO2 doesn't actually have much effect.

Jan 22, 2014 at 10:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterBruce of Newcastle

"Quiet sun"? "Quiet sun"? They've been telling us for the last 25 years that the sun has nothing to do with it. And a lot of them still are.

Jan 22, 2014 at 10:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterJimmy Haigh

(and it is difficult imagining how it could even have been discussed with a UKAS assessor).

It is really striking when you see the so-called corrections plotted over time, e.g. this one:
http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=1zfrn1l&s=5#.UuBGKrs1jDd
Jan 22, 2014 at 10:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterDrJohnGalan

OK. UK Accreditation Service for laboratories.


http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=1zfrn1l&s=5#.UuBGKrs1jDd Wow. Self-fulfilling prophesy in action.

Jan 22, 2014 at 11:59 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

Any comment, Mr Betts.??


(Sharp sounds of breathe intake)

accepted that you need to check with your handlers.....

Jan 23, 2014 at 12:16 AM | Unregistered Commenterjollyfarmer

They like to call it the 'pause'. Not a good name.

It should be called the 'plateau' - as it is undeniably high and flat.

Calling it the 'pause' pre-supposes that normal upward-trending service will be resumed sometime soon. But it could go down. No-one really knows - and pre-supposing anything is surely unscientific?

Jan 23, 2014 at 12:27 AM | Unregistered CommenterJ Calvert N

These are graphs of Ocean heat content from 1955. One covers the surface to 700m, the other surface to 2000m.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v224/Chiloe/12_Climate/OHC_7an.png

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v224/Chiloe/12_Climate/OHC_2an.png

Note that the graphs are flat during the 1975 to 1995 period of rapid air temperature rise. They then start to rise from the mid 1990s and the 1997/1998 El Nino, identifiable as a peak.

This is consistent with a diversion of net incoming energy from atmospheric and land warming into ocean warming from the mid 1990s.

Jan 23, 2014 at 12:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

You can rely on EM. I wonder if he will tell us how the bloody hell that happened. And when it's going to happen again, or reverse.

I quote from the estimable John Brignell's Jan 2014 entry..

The debate has now reached Langmuir’s symptom number 5. (Criticisms are met by ad hoc excuses thought up on the spur of the moment). Searching for the “lost” heat in the deep oceans, for example, is nothing more than a pathetic joke.


Rhoda, SW Florida, 53 degrees F

Jan 23, 2014 at 1:34 AM | Unregistered Commenterrhoda

Jan 22, 2014 at 4:51 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

Nice one. I think the 'hokey stick' needs more than a fluffer to keep it up: It needs Viagra...

Jan 23, 2014 at 5:41 AM | Unregistered CommenterJimmy Haigh

Temperature is an intensive property. What more needs to be said, apart from uncertainty?

Jan 23, 2014 at 7:07 AM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

"The standstill in global temperatures was predicted by the Met Office model.

(Richard Betts, Met Office)"

I am assured by all in the CliSci business that they don't do predictions, only projections. Of course you are doing a prediction of sorts when you say an event that is already occurring is going to occur. Problem is what sort of prediction is that.

I had hoped that the new generation of cliscis would take a step back from the activism of the last generation, but apparently not. Sure some, or even most, are more polite, but we have another generation of scientists who believe the hypothesis, deny reality when it occurs and spend their time trying to prove the hypothesis correct in the face of masses of real world observations that give the hypothesis, if not a total fail, a highly flawed.

Jan 23, 2014 at 7:08 AM | Unregistered Commentergeronimo

J Calvert N
Wrong you are, mmm.
Up or not up it must go.There is no down.
Settled, the science is.

Jan 23, 2014 at 8:36 AM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Double posting we are this morning, yes.
[Sorry about that. Seems to be a glitch in the system]

Jan 23, 2014 at 8:36 AM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

I thought the ARGO buoys had shown little if any change in sea temps to the depths EM quotes in recent years?

Was'nt that the driver for Trenberth and others speculating that the "missing heat" must be hiding in the deep oceans, below the range of the ARGO system?
Said heat having used magic powers to pass through 2 kilometres of water without disturbing its temperature profile. If I knew the right spells, maybe I could persuade some of it to pass through the walls of my house and cut my heating bills.

Jan 23, 2014 at 9:27 AM | Registered Commentermikeh

Entropic Man (Jan 23, 2014 at 12:59 AM): you really are a sucker, aren’t you?

When did they start widespread monitoring of the ocean temperatures, other than the surface?

Answer: not yet, though ARGO is a step in that direction; when they have several tens of thousands of these buoys working (and are being regularly being maintained and calibrated – remember, they are in one of Earth’s most hostile environments), then they might be able to start generating a reasonable picture.

Have you seen the scale? It is in joules. Convert that to temperatures, and I think you will find that they are talking about “anomalies” of tenths or even hundredths of a degree C. What is the accepted accuracy of field thermometers nowadays? Last I heard, it was ±0.2°C; in other words, this “anomaly” is well within the error margin of the measuring instruments.

Jan 23, 2014 at 10:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

The BBC news group should be shut down and the funding used to create independent and competing news providers with strict rules on impartiality.
Jan 22, 2014 at 2:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterSchrodinger's Cat

The BBC already has strict rules on impartiality. The problem is it simply ignores them all in the name of what it thinks is "the greater good". And the BBC Trust is complicit in letting the BBC flout those rules.

Jan 23, 2014 at 1:36 PM | Registered Commenterthinkingscientist

Stehpen Richards says:

They said (my interpolation) that when they run their model(s) they get periods of 'near' flatline temperatures. Sadly they were asked to define those periods and said " not necessarily at the same time as the reality". So you see, their models approximately flatline but never when the real climate does.

I've got a random number generator routine that can do that. In an Excel spreadsheet. On a laptop.

Jan 23, 2014 at 1:39 PM | Registered Commenterthinkingscientist

Radical Rodent

Ocean heat content is increasing at 6*10^21 Joules/year.

This is also

the net annual energy uptake for the planet

the amount of energy uptake expected from increasing CO2

the amount of energy required to produce the observed thermal expansion sea level rise

the amount of energy needed to produce a 0.2C /decade global temperature rise if OHC were not increasing

This is not a coincidence. These parameters are linked as part of the Earth's energy budget.

Jan 23, 2014 at 1:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

Entropic Man says:

This is consistent with a diversion of net incoming energy from atmospheric and land warming into ocean warming from the mid 1990s.

So (just for a laugh) please explain:

(a) How physically the net incoming energy was "diverted". By what physical process, and why did that physical process magically change?
(b) How the Argo float system failed to record the passing of this missing heat from surface to below 2000 m
(c) Why you link to two graphs, purportedly "NOAA" which actually link from two CAGW climate websites and appear to show ocean heat content in the 0 - 700 and 0 - 2000 m going back to 1955 and expect us to take that seriously. Even NOAA only shows graphs back to 1993.

Jan 23, 2014 at 1:56 PM | Registered Commenterthinkingscientist

@ Entropic Man

Where did the data come from for the measurement down to 2000 metres? (Post at 12.59). Where does this number 6*10^21 Joules/year come from? (Post at 1.45). Sound like it's from a model, not observation.

Jan 23, 2014 at 1:59 PM | Unregistered Commenterpalantir

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