Climate Data, Fact or Fiction

Politicians meeting in Copenhagen are hoping to decree what the proper global temperature should be. Their concern stems, apart from politics, from a perceived dangerous warming. But, just like in elections, it’s not the voters that determine outcome; it is the vote counters. In the climate game, it appears that actual temperatures, and their relationship to natural cycles, don’t count; it is how the temperatures are presented that fuel concern.

There are three main data sets of global surface temperature. One is kept by the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia (CRU), the agency under fire for “hiding the decline.” Another is kept by NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GIS). The third, maintained by NOAA , is the Global Historical Climate Network (GHCN) which is based on physical weather stations. CRU and GIS get most of their raw data from the GHCN and then make “adjustments.” Sometimes the adjustments are legitimate such as when a station moves or gets new instrumentation. But almost all the adjustments have resulted in more warming than shown by the raw data. That is highly unlikely if the adjustments are legitimate. Two examples:

The following two graphs show NASA’s adjustment to the Santa Rosa, CA, station (which happens to be at the headquarters of NOAA).

Santa-Rosa-raw-vs-processed

The following is what the folks at CRU did with the GHCN data from the airport at Darwin, Australia. In this graph, the blue is the raw data, the red is the adjusted data.

Darwin-Raw-vs-adjusted

This makes one wonder if we really know what the temperatures, and the keepers of the temperatures, are doing. It also makes one wonder if politicians are basing policy on fact or fiction.

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15 comments

  1. Much ado about nothing. Scientists looking for grant monies, and politicians and bankers taking their profits. Taxpayer be damned, they will do this to you.

  2. In the end i think everything that involves money is some how messed up and exploited. Look all the people claiming its real get grant money or make money off it?? Just follow the money and the truth unfolds in pretty much anything in life
    airsoft guns
     
     

  3. There are Vikings buried in permafrost in Greenland.
    The permafrost is not disturbed.
    It was not frozen when they were buried.
    I would call that warmer then today, a lot warmer.

    The Fate of Greenland’s Vikings  February 28, 2000 by Dale Mackenzie Brown
    http://www.archaeology.org/online/features/greenland/
    Story of Viking Colonies’ Icy ‘Pompeii’ Unfolds From Ancient Greenland Farm
    Published in New York Times: Tuesday, May 8, 2001
    http://www.nytimes.com/2001/05/08/science/08VIKI.html?ex=1156132800&en=921840c080c26c01&ei=5070
    The Viking farm under the sand in Greenland by Terese Brasen April 23, 2001
    http://www.expressnews.ualberta.ca/print.cfm?id=776
     
    For a satirical look at the climategate computer programming (hiding the decline):
    Anthropogenic Global Warming Virus Alert.
    http://www.thespoof.com/news/spoof.cfm?headline=s5i64103

  4. Obvious you have found some altered figures to support an argument you already believe in. If you go to the Santa Rosa, CA, NWS site, the raw data indicates an upward trend in temperature. There is much more data (hourly and daily alongside monthly and yearly averages) than you present in the altered figures that appear to be from some other data set. I question your sources, not the data from the site. My guess is you found some anti-climate change report that itself has falsified data to support a biased argument. You might try taking a look at the UN’s IPCC report. The strong consensus is a changing climate with carbon inputs as the driving force. To simply reject the scientific community’s large majority conclusion based on a few minor variations is very closed minded.
    Short answer: your work is fiction solely to support a bias you have against the current administration.
    Longer answer: Climate change is a natural part of the earth system. There is a multitude of evidence dating back many decades (during many administrations) that indicate the current climate alteration is a result of man-made influences overlain on the natural variation of the atmospheric system.

  5. A coalition of small island nations has formed in Copenhagen to push for an increased pace of emissions control.  Seems thy’re worried about rising sea levels. 

    What would you deniers say to them?

    1. See:
      http://tucsoncitizen.com/wryheat/2009/07/28/sea-level-rising/

      Most islands have nothing to worry about, first, because sea level is not rising very fast, secondly, the geologic forces build up islands as the sea rises.  

      Some of the most voiciferous about global warming are on Tuvulu.  But a tide gauge to measure sea level has been in existence at Tuvulu since 1977, run by the University of Hawaii. It showed a negligible increase of only 0.07 mm per year over two decades. It fell three millimeters between 1995 and 1999.

      The island inhabitants were apparently taken in by the hype (and maybe by the promise of money).

      1. I mention it because one of your previous arguments has been the “ice in the glass” analogy. 

        Aren’t the forces that result in island building independent from sea levels?  My understanding is that the volcanic action that creates islands also moves in location, thus resulting in the chains of islands (like Hawaii).  Do the earlier created islands continue to rise? 

        On another note, I’m sure you’re aware that the  AP has investigated and concluded that the emails from Anglia show an effort to prevent disclosure of data, but not an effort to mislead.  It seems that one of the issues regarding release was that the researchers at Anglia felt they were being harrassed by numerous requests for data, requests they felt were designed to slow down the research effort.  Not that this will represent the last word in the investigation, but so far it seems “climategate” may be misnamed.

        In the AP article about the investigation, the dissenting voice again comes from a scientist with a history of working for industry.  Funding and mouthpieces for the anti-global warming often have ties to the industries most likely to be hurt by efforts to curb CO2 emissions.

      2. You are correct regarding volcanic islands such as Hawaii.  I was refering to sand and coral islands which follow changes in sea level.

        As for the AP, a lead author was in bed with the East Anglia crew,
        see:
        http://tinyurl.com/y99vdns

  6. Nice of you to use a nonscientific website with an obvious bias about climate change. For the true story, try going to actual website where the site data can be found. Your figures are false. This is what happens when you use political sites, but your articles show an obvious political bias. Its just a shame it is hidden in a psuedo-science format.
    http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/cgi-bin/cliMAIN.pl?ca7965

  7. Silly little men on a planet all worried, deep space laughs in your face and the stars chuckle. Silly little men. and what if you are all right, then what? Cry at everything and Laugh at nothing.

    Histories Meekness is the captcha

  8. What an amazing discussion. I really believe that we’re not doing the rest of the world any favors by driving our SUV’s. Our air is their air and vice versa.

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