Wednesday, January 22, 2014

It's hotting up all over the world (but what about that cold spell?)

Sou | 5:10 PM Go to the first of 16 comments. Add a comment

From the NOAA - last year was the fourth hottest on record, tying with 2003. And in another ENSO neutral year.

The year 2013 tied with 2003 as the fourth warmest year globally since records began in 1880. The annually-averaged temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was 0.62°C (1.12°F) above the 20th century average and marks the 37th consecutive year (since 1976) that the annual temperature was above the long-term average. Currently, the warmest year on record is 2010, which was 0.66°C (1.19°F) above average.
To date, including 2013, 9 of the 10 warmest years on record have occured during the 21st century. Only one year during the 20th century—1998—was warmer than 2013. The global annual temperature has increased at an average rate of 0.06°C (0.11°F) per decade since 1880 and at an average rate of 0.16°C (0.28°F) per decade since 1970.

Here's a map.  It doesn't show the Arctic or Antarctica - which we know to be getting warmer.
Source: NOAA


Sorry - this doesn't rate a mention at WUWT (except in a few comments)!  They are too busy discussing the current cold spell in eastern USA in an article Anthony has made "sticky" to keep it at the top (archived here). To compare and contrast (my bold italics):

From WUWT and Joe D'Aleo - hasn't seen anything like it since 1918 ...the most severe run thus far

A new forecast shows the cold blast in the eastern half of the USA extending well past Groundhog Day, Feb 2nd, according to their models. WeatherBell has had an excellent track record this winter so far. He says he hasn’t seen anything like it since 1918 when the big flu pandemic hit the USA. ...D’Aleo writes in a follow up email...It covers the coldest period of the winter season climatologically in most areas. The other global models agree through at least 10 days. This is the most severe run thus far. We have been alerting clients to it for weeks. 

From Jeff Masters at Wunderground.com - not as impressive... (but) ...a respectable cold blast

It's "The Return of the Polar Vortex" over the much of the eastern half of the U.S. this week, as another round of bitterly cold Arctic air plunges southwards out of Canada. Like many sequels, "The Return of the Polar Vortex" will not be as impressive as the original, with temperatures averaging about ten degrees warmer than during the original Polar Vortex episode earlier this January. Still, with temperatures 15 - 25° colder than average expected over much of the eastern half of the U.S. Tuesday through Thursday, this week's sequel is a respectable cold blast. The cold air is centered over the Upper Midwest, and low temperatures in portions of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan dropped below -20° early Tuesday morning. Crane Lake, Minnesota bottomed out at a bone-chilling -32°F this morning, and Pellston, Michigan hit -25°. 

Commenters at WUWT are busy debating whether or not the cold weather in the USA in 1918 caused the (global) influenza pandemic.  With an occasional comment from a hot Californian.

Jenn Oates says:
January 21, 2014 at 1:44 pm
And here in Northern CA we’re wearing shorts with so little precip that Folsom Lake looks like the river it was before the dam.

snow says:
January 21, 2014 at 1:53 pm
With this pattern is there any chance of moister for the west coast? No rainy season at all for the west coast so far. They could sure use the rain and mountain snow.

Jim Cripwell says:
January 21, 2014 at 2:17 pm
I live in Ottawa, Canada, and I quietly chuckle to myself. We are having a very normal winter. My house is warm, my driveway clear of snow. My car starts with no problem. There is lots of snow for the skiers, and ice on the canal for the skaters. Life goes on with nothing extraordinary happening at all. We are looking forward to Winterlude at the end of January, beginning of February. Ho hum.

Todd says:
January 21, 2014 at 12:16 pm
I don’t remember 1993/94 but I sure do remember Jan/Feb 1996, which did break or tie state records in my neck of the woods. Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin.
Are we talking that level of cold, yet, anywhere?


  1. Trenberth has said the pause has lasted 16 years.

    Curry has said if it goes to 20 years its all over for the IPCC.

    You cannot ignore the data.

    1. Dr Trenberth is one of the 97% of scientists who does look at the data. Unlike Judith, he and the majority of scientists do not ignore it. On the contrary, they collect, compile, analyse and report the various data.

      Prof Curry doesn't know what she is talking about. If the IPCC changes and it probably will in the medium if not the near term, it won't be because of anything Judith Curry says.

      She has no credibility any more and she doesn't do much of anything with data. She's too scared of her uncertainty monster that hides in the cupboard and comes out whenever she's blogging.

    2. Well you will just have to face reality soon or later.

      The pause is now mainstream, and is growing by the day that we do not warm.

      Trenberth Is preparing to jump off into the life boats before they run out. And he is 97% of the 77?

    3. Too true about the reality. I hope tomorrow's reality doesn't come too soon.

      But I think you'd best express yourself more clearly because I'm getting the feeling we are not on the same page when it comes to science. Where are you coming from?

      a) an "ice age cometh"

      b) there is no such thing as the greenhouse effect

      c) scientists don't know nuffin'

      d) all of the above.

      There are more than 800 scientists involved in writing WG1 report and thousands more whose research is represented in the 9200 papers cited in the report. If you think there are only 77 people in the world who do science relating to climate and the earth system you'd be out by at least 2 orders of magnitude.

      I appreciate it's hard to get your head around if you only inhabit places like Curry's place and WUWT - where they act as if there are only about ten scientists in the world who study anything related to or affected by climate. But think about it. There would be well in excess of 100,000 people working in a related field - doing research, advising primary producers, forestry, fishing, parks etc etc. They aren't all wrong you know.


      Anthony Watts and Judith Curry have a loud voice in the deniosphere but nowhere else (outside of the US GOP and tabloid newspapers.) Most scientists wouldn't have heard of either of them.

    4. That should be doing research, plus people advising primary producers etc.

      I don't have number of research scientists but in Australia alone researchers are employed by multiple universities (faculties of meteorology, science, ag & forestry etc etc); Centres of Excellence, various state government agencies, BoM, CSIRO, other Federal agencies and more. Plus no-one who works on the science side at any state government agency that I've come across (eg DSE, DPI etc) is under any illusions about climate change. They all think deniers are nuts.

      You are living in a bubble if you seriously think there's any chance of no serious consequences from using the air as a waste dump.

    5. No warming for 16 years was not expected by any model in the world.

      Its reached the stage now where we have Hansen praying for an El nino. Not that it matters because it would spawn a huge two year La nina to follow which would complete the 20 years of no warming.

      Its becoming a serious issue for AGW.

    6. You've come to the wrong place, Anonymous. Either go read an IPCC report or get a basic primer on climate science before wasting space on HotWhopper.

      Note the comment policy. Circular "arguments" are not tolerated here. This is not one of your anti-science, illiterati blogs.

      I won't be discussing this with you further because it's obvious that you don't understand anything about climate or climate science. Your time would be better wasted at WUWT or another denier blog.

      (If you tell me which of a, b or c (or other) you adhere to we may be able to communicate - or not. Otherwise I'll take it that you "believe" c), which means there is no purpose in accepting any further comment from you - you have nothing to offer by way of expertise or knowledge or insight or intelligent questioning.)

    7. You denying the pause that Trenberth says is happening?

      You cant, he is an AGW advocate and nature published it.

      That's all im saying, the models did not see this coming and hence the theory is in trouble.

      Especially if you are relying on an El nino to spike the temps globally.

    8. No, you're not just saying that global surface temperatures haven't risen as quickly in the last few years. You are saying "the theory is in trouble". Which shows your ignorance. What "theory" would that be?

      More evidence you are a science denier type b) and type c).

      Now tell me about this impending ice age and we'll have the trifecta!

      And about that Nature article - try this for starters:


    9. "Trenberth has said the pause has lasted 16 years.

      Curry has said if it goes to 20 years its all over for the IPCC.

      You cannot ignore the data.

      Sheesh, how many times do these denialists have to be told?

      1) - the claimed "pause" is nothing more than noise hiding the signal. For any signal with a certain amount of noise, there is a concurrent minimum amount of time required for the signal to emerge with statistical significance" from the noise.

      2) Curry is wrong to say that a 20 year interval with no statistically significant warming means that it is (according to Anonymous) "all over for the IPCC". The fact is that for the interval from 1980 onward the time required for identifying the warming signal from the climate 'noise' is 17 years ± a standard deviation of 3 years. That's one standard deviation - I wonder if the Anonymous can work out the 95% confidence interval?

      Anonymous was right about one thing - you cannot ignore the data.

      "The pause is now mainstream, and is growing by the day that we do not warm."

      But it is still warming - much of the heat is simply being partitioned into sinks other than the land surface. This is no great surprise as the ENSO currents and other oceanic circulation patterns have been trending toward pulling heat deeper into the oceans. When such variations in heat transport and forcings are accounted for, it's apparent that it's still warming.

      "No warming for 16 years was not expected by any model in the world."

      Bullshit. There are many graphs in multiple assessment reports where there are confidence intervals, and where such include ranges of the order of magnitude of 20 years.

      I invite Anonymous to demonstrate otherwise...

    10. Dear Anon.

      You cannot ignore the data.

      Absolutely correct.

      A slowdown in the rate of surface/tropospheric warming is not a "pause" and OHC continues to rise, demonstrating unequivocally that the climate system is in radiative imbalance.

      Nobody ever said natural variability would stop or that surface/tropospheric warming would be monotonic. Nor are "the models" designed to predict Earth climate system behaviour accurately decade by decade. They are for investigating multidecadal/centennial trends under various degrees of forcing.

      The misinformers have tricked you and you should be angry about that.

  2. BTW a baseline number that NOAA used would be good.

    I assume it was 1951-1980, the entire cold PDO.

    And still no warming for 16 years.

    1. Fair point. Did you follow the link to the source? The NOAA didn't indicate the period over which the percentiles were derived. I think the record goes back to the start of the twentieth century, but it could be longer. (The map I showed is percentiles not anomalies - so no 'baseline' in that sense.)

      The other map they showed in their report was anomaly temperatures from the 1981-2010 baseline.

    2. "And still no warming for 16 years."

      Repeating crap ad nauseum does not make it true. The Earth is in energy imbalance, which means it is warming.

    3. Dear Anon.

      I assume it was 1951-1980, the entire cold PDO.

      And still no warming for 16 years.

      WRT your concerns over baselines, here (again) is the comparison of annual means for HadCRUT4, GISTEMP and UAH TLT from 1996 - present. All are presented on a common 1980 - 2010 baseline (that used by UAH).

    4. Meh. The "b" at January 24, 2014 at 7:19 PM was me.


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