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Coldest March globally for 17 years.

Paul Hudson | 15:32 UK time, Tuesday, 12 April 2011


Although locally we have been enjoying unusual warmth in the last few weeks, globally the opposite has been true. Indeed, at the end of last week Remote Sensing Systems, an organisation backed by NOAA, announced that March 2011 was the coldest March since 1994, according to their analysis of satellite data.

This is the first month since June 2008 that the global temperature anomaly has been negative on this measure.

The image below shows which regions of the world were coldest and warmest in March.

According to the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH) satellite data analysis, March 2011 continued to cool (see graph below) with the tropics, Northern and Southern Hemisphere all showing a negative anomaly.

As the impact of La Nina continues to fade in the Pacific, global temperatures should begin to stabilise at these levels, and then cyclically rise in the next few months. Nevertheless it's been quite a spectacular drop in the last 12 months.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    There are recent signs that global temperatures may be warming up, even if only temporarily.
    The daily AQUA CH5 (14000ft/600mb) anomaly for April went positive on April 8th., which is the first time the daily figure has been positive since January 19th. As a result, the cumulative April anomaly rose from -.27c on the 5th, to -0.16c on the 9th, which I estimate is equivalent to a UAH figure of about -0.012c. There are signs that the anomaly is stabilising, but I still expect the April UAH figure to be above zero.

  • Comment number 2.

    We shall see. Cold intensifying at the pole http://www.weatherbell.com/jb/?p=1064, and down under no less ready to throw the warmers a bone just yet http://www.theage.com.au/travel/travel-news/snow-arrives-two-months-early-20110412-1dbng.html.

    Of course this is just weather, until we get the first heatwave, then get ready for the news items *sigh*

  • Comment number 3.

    Paul

    Whilst interesting against the background of so-called global warming, the surface tempertures tell us little about the earth's overall heat energy budget. As you allude to the influence of La Nina, it is clear that the oceans are the main heat sinks and substantially more important as drivers of the climate than the stuff that comes out of the exhaust on my 4x4. Could you perhaps explain this to the numpties that are responsible for climate change policy in this country. Thanks

    Spanglerboy

  • Comment number 4.

    The oceans are creating noise above and below the trend, but not necessarily the trend itself. Global temperatures during El Ninos in the 80s which were considered anonymously warm at the time are now considered cold in the depth of a La Nina.

    The difference between warm records and cold records in terms of newsworthiness is we aren't actually breaking any cold records on that graph. UAH at -0.1C is unremarkable, the coldest March since 1994 is worth a passing note, but even then we can be quite sure most Marchs in the 20th century were cooler than March 2011.

    In comparison the warm anomalies tend to be a lot more newsworthy. For example last March in that record was the warmest March since at least 1979. Notable in itself, but even more so to contemplate that "since *at least* 1979" is likely to mean it beats hundreds of years of Marchs.

    To put it another way, the record or near record hot years we get tend to come along with stuff like record or near record worldwide coral bleaching events, as we are pushing into new territory the earth hasn't been in for yonks. Whereas the cooler years, such as perhaps this one, we've already experienced years like this in the 80s and 90s.

  • Comment number 5.

    Seems to me the climate changes more year-on-year than the Peak Doomers think will happen over several decades. If we can handle 1c global temperature changes from one year to the next, what makes them so dangerous when they occur over half a century?

    And when we realise that warming is beneficial to mankind anyway, you really do have to wonder if all the noise we hear from Peak Doomers is really is just shilling on behalf of Big Renewables.

  • Comment number 6.

    List of FORECASTS
    At the risk of boring you all I carry forward the list of forcasts made in February/March

    Met Office +0.44
    SmokingDeepThroat +0.39
    quake +0.36
    ukpahonta +0.35
    Gadgetfriend +0.30
    NeilHamp +0.27
    QuaesoVeritas +0.25 (revised)
    millinia +0.24
    Joe Bastardi +0.2
    Ken Sharples +0.18
    LabMunkey +0.18
    nibor25 +0.15

    The Met.Office still lead the "warmists.

    It will be interesting to see what HadCRUT3 is this month.
    If HadCRUT3 March is as cold as February then the remaining 9 months of 2011 must average +0.5 to achieve the Met.Office forcast of 0.44
    The last 9 months of 2010 averaged 0.46.

  • Comment number 7.

    If March HadCCRUT equals February
    Then the HadCRUT3 moving annual mean up to March will be 0.41
    As more 2011 months are included in the MAM we will see who's forecast comes close
    Smoking Deep Throat and quake winning at the moment
    I will continue to update monthly assuming Paul continues to post on UAH temperatures

  • Comment number 8.

    @ neilhamp- thanks for keeping track- it's quite interesting.

  • Comment number 9.

    #6. - NeilHamp wrote:
    "At the risk of boring you all I carry forward the list of forcasts made in February/March"

    Please keep posting these, I for one don't consider it boring.

    "It will be interesting to see what HadCRUT3 is this month.
    If HadCRUT3 March is as cold as February then the remaining 9 months of 2011 must average +0.5 to achieve the Met.Office forcast of 0.44
    The last 9 months of 2010 averaged 0.46. "

    Based on UAH and RSS, the March HadCRUT3 figure will be around +0.14c, which would put the 2011 average at about 0.204c. Personally, I find it difficult to believe that HadCRUT3 will be so low, but it's almost certain to be lower than February. Also, I expect temperatures to pick up slightly for the remainder of the year, to around "normal" in UAH terms, with March being the low point in the anomalies.

  • Comment number 10.

    #2. - millennia wrote:
    "We shall see. Cold intensifying at the pole http://www.weatherbell.com/jb/?p=1064, and down under no less ready to throw the warmers a bone just yet "
    When I said that there are signs that temperatures are warming up, I meant relative to March and early April. Personally I believe that we are at the top of a warming cycle and we are about to go down the other side. Meanwhile, there may be some months slightly above normal and some below. We haven't really started to see the big falls which I believe will occur during the next 20 years. Because temperatures are relatively low compared to 10 or 20 years ago, we will increasingly see negative trends over those timescales.

  • Comment number 11.

    I did not think that the science was settled, especially when they could not provide a detailed calibration for carbon dioxide warming in the atmosphere using the scientific method (let alone, the man made contribution). Apparently the only evidence that has been found by Mensa members for this is an insignificant 0.01 Kelvin for anthropogenic warming (Jaworowski) and also (Miskolczi) using the atmosphere of Mars. I think I will stick with the prediction on the Mensa International Science forum that says the climate will get colder because the speed of the centre of the sun relative to the centre of mass of the solar system determines the length of the solar cycle and because this in turn is caused by the orbits of the Planets, it is predicted that Climate Change is going into a cooling phase.

  • Comment number 12.

    The NASA/GISS anomaly seems to have been published ahead of NOAA/NCDC and HadCRUT3 this month.
    The global anomaly comes out at 0.57c, up from 0.44c in February, which after adjustment to 1961-90, works out at 0.46c compared to 0.33c last month.
    Clearly this is much higher than the UAH and RSS March figures, which were 0.153c and 0.121c after adjustment. Otherwise, the NOAA/GISS global anomaly is about 0.3c above UAH.
    The difference seems to be mainly related to the NH anomaly, which after adjustment to 1961-90 was +0.8c, compared to the UAH figure of +0.24c, whereas the adjusted SH anomaly is +0.133c, compared to the adjusted UAH figure of +0.08c.
    Having been mostly below UAH and RSS last year, the NASA/GISS global anomaly has been above them so far this year, and the gap seems to be widening.
    This is very odd and makes predicting the HadCRUT3 figure very difficult, but it does seem that it is NASA/GISS which is out of step with the others.

  • Comment number 13.

    paulcottingham. I totally agree with you, but that is too simple for some people. They over complexify things and measure from the wrong angle and predicitibly get Fear. False evidence appearing real.

  • Comment number 14.

    # - paulcottingham wrote:
    "I think I will stick with the prediction on the Mensa International Science forum that says the climate will get colder because the speed of the centre of the sun relative to the centre of mass of the solar system determines the length of the solar cycle and because this in turn is caused by the orbits of the Planets, it is predicted that Climate Change is going into a cooling phase."
    Over what period of time is the predicted cooling phase?
    Can you provide a link to this?


  • Comment number 15.

    Paulcottingham. I also forgot to mention that the temperature of the sun in conjunction with it's orbit, are the greatest factor in determining the temperature of the earth.

  • Comment number 16.

    "but it does seem that it is NASA/GISS which is out of step with the others."

    Nothing to do with arch-warmist Jim Hansen running their ship, is it?

  • Comment number 17.

    "Apparently the only evidence that has been found by Mensa members"

    Mensa members? Really?

    "I think I will stick with the prediction on the Mensa International Science forum that says the climate will get colder because the speed of the centre of the sun relative to the centre of mass of the solar system determines the length of the solar cycle and because this in turn is caused by the orbits of the Planets, it is predicted that Climate Change is going into a cooling phase."

    Sounds like astrology

  • Comment number 18.

    Ahahaha - and I though today was going to be dull:

    CO2 is a coolant, not only is AGW hogwash but the entire GHG theory - http://www.biocab.org/Mean_Free_Path.pdf

    Cue Paul "skepticalscience" Briscoe with a flood of refuting links. Can anybody find a link between Prof Nahle and the fossil fuel industry just make sure we dismiss his work without a second glance?

  • Comment number 19.

    The ocean temperatures are cooling, according to Argo, the global buoy system.

    Cooler oceans means cooler global temperatures.

    There has been cooling now since 1998, though not according to Hadley or NASA.

  • Comment number 20.

    #17 - quake wrote:
    "Sounds like astrology"
    I am sure that you were probably not being serious, but this theory sounds as if it is based on physics, and gravitational influences, whereas Astrology is based entirely on the location of the planets relative to notional constellations, without involving any known force at all.

  • Comment number 21.

    18. At 14:17pm 14th Apr 2011, millennia wrote:
    "CO2 is a coolant, not only is AGW hogwash but the entire GHG theory"

    Yeah sure CO2 is a coolant...

    I mean really....

    First I learn that positions of other planets determine the climate on Earth and now I learn CO2 cools the planet. Are these conclusions drawn from scientific journals? Nope, thye are conclusions drawn from The Internet. This kind of stuff is too nutty even for wuwt (iirc solar and planetary alignment connections to climate are a banned topic on wuwt), let alone a peer reviewed journal. What's next? Blog science proof that a carbon atom and two oxygen atoms can't combine? It wouldn't suprise me.

  • Comment number 22.

    Did you even BOTHER to read the paper, or are you so wrapped up in your own prejudice that anything you don't agree with is wrong no matter who wrote it?

    Can we have a refutation of the maths in that paper please? It is published so let somebody qualified point out what is wrong with it.

    This is exactly the problem with climate science, is is so dogmatic now that even publishing scientific papers is dismissed out of hand by amateurs. What hope for science when we go down the road ignoring pieces of work because it doesn't fit the "consensus" view?

    Neither did Einstein's work when it pointed out Newton hadn't got it all right.... oh, and neither had Einstein.

  • Comment number 23.

    And next do I have to debunk a PDF claiming the Sun orbits the Earth? And until I do must I entertain the idea of an Earth centered solar system or I risk being precieved prejudiced?

    I draw the line at discussing such a ridiculous idea that CO2 causes cooling. I'll let the author of that idea waste his own time, not mine, by trying to convince actual experts before I even bother getting involved. Because I am not going to give that PDF the time of day until actual experts are quoted as endorsing it's ideas. Ie peer review.

    If I don't draw the line here, where would I draw it?

    I wouldn't believe someone coming up to me in the street trying to sell me a bridge either. Not for a second. Predudice? No common sense. The flip side would be to suffer gullibility. Something about being so open minded our brains fall out.

  • Comment number 24.

    #21 - quake wrote:
    "First I learn that positions of other planets determine the climate on Earth and now I learn CO2 cools the planet."
    I think you are confusing Astrology and Physics again.
    Having said that, I couldn't find any reference to this theory via google, so I reserve judgement until I have seen it.
    Once again, I request paulcottingham to provide a link.
    It shouldn't be that difficult.

  • Comment number 25.

    #23 - quake wrote:
    "I draw the line at discussing such a ridiculous idea that CO2 causes cooling."
    Since global temperatures are currently negatively correlated to CO2 levels, (on the basis that temperatures have been falling while CO2 levels have been increasing), it surely isn't such a ridiculous suggestion?

  • Comment number 26.

    The NCDC/NOAA global anomaly for March is 0.49c, up from 0.4c in February. This is equivalent to an anomaly of 0.35c for the HadCRUT3 base period of 1961-90, compared to 0.27c last month. While not as high as the NASA/GISS anomaly, it does once again contradict the UAH/RSS figures, in that the trend for the year is upward, not down.
    The N.H. anomaly was 0.58c (0.49c), compared to 0.43c (0.34c) last month (1961-90 equivalents in brackets) and the S.H. anomaly was 0.4c (0.22c), compared to 0.38c (0.21c) last month.
    Since HadCRUT3 has recently been very close to the NCDC/NOAA figure, I would now expect a HadCRUT3 anomaly of around 0.35c, compared to February's 0.267c.
    This would put the cumulative 2011 mean up from 0.237c to 0.274c.

  • Comment number 27.

    The scientific papers used by members of the Space Special interest group of Mensa for these conclusions include.

    Length of the Solar Cycle: http://friendsofscience.org/assets/files/documents/Solar%20Cycle%20-%20Friis-Chr_Lassen-.pdf

    Astronomical origins of the climate oscillations: http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/arxiv/pdf/1003/1003.1554v1.pdf

    The effect of planetary tides on the Length of the Solar cycle:
    http://www.climatestop.com/NASA_TM-2007-214817.pdf
    http://www.climatestop.com/Reconstruction_of_Hung_Fig4_01.pdf
    http://www.climatestop.com/SolarTidalInfluencesofVEJ_W01.pdf
    http://www.climatestop.com/Ian_Wilson_Syzygy.pdf

    To understand how the Length of the Solar Cycle changes the Earths cloud Albedo, see.
    http://www.bbso.njit.edu/~pgoode/txt/txt/Palle_etal_2004_ASR.pdf
    And also the results from the CERN pilot CLOUD Experiment: http://centaur.reading.ac.uk/7222/1/266_acp-10-1635-2010.pdf

  • Comment number 28.

    #27 - paulcottingham
    Thanks for the links to the varioius papers, which will take me some time to read, although I think I may have seen some of them before.
    However, I was hoping for a link to the Mensa International Science Forum prediction that the climate is going into a cooling phase.
    I am interested in this as there appears to be a 60 year cycle within the HadCRUT3 50 year linear trend, which suggests a cooling phase over the next 30 years, and I wondered if the Mensa cycle had similar characteristics.

  • Comment number 29.

    @ QV # 25

    "#23 - quake wrote:
    "I draw the line at discussing such a ridiculous idea that CO2 causes cooling."
    Since global temperatures are currently negatively correlated to CO2 levels, (on the basis that temperatures have been falling while CO2 levels have been increasing), it surely isn't such a ridiculous suggestion?"

    I don't think you can claim CO2 is an atmospheric coolant just because the trends have diverged (temp and co2), just as you cannot claim co2 warms when they coincided.

    You're being disingenuous, or overly flippant.

  • Comment number 30.

    #29 - LabMunkey wrote:
    "I don't think you can claim CO2 is an atmospheric coolant just because the trends have diverged (temp and co2), just as you cannot claim co2 warms when they coincided.

    You're being disingenuous, or overly flippant."
    I was playing "Devil's Advocate"
    However, I think the argument is worthy of consideration, especially if temperatures continue to go in the opposite direction to the way they should be. The situation may not be as simple as the warmists would have us believe.

  • Comment number 31.

    @30,

    i'm not sure it's an argument you CAN put forward though. It relies on nothing but weak correlation and there are numerous other factors that can explain the temperature stall (solar output, oceanic cycles, the spaghetti monster etc).

    Plus, it is very hard indeed to argue that co2 is NOT a ghg- all the evidence suggests that it is, you'd have to turn some fairly solid physics upside down to promote 'your' theory.

    It CAN however be used to destroy the higher co2=higher temp correlative theory- meaning that far more explanatory and detailed eidence is required for the cAGW theory to hold.

  • Comment number 32.

    Hey Quake . . .
    your being a bit rough on the Solar Centre Barycentre concept - it's not that bonkers. You're quite right that WUWT don't give it any time on their blog but I think that's because some try to link it directly with global warming. This is too big a leap since the science just isn't there to support it yet - in fact, it's nowhere near.

    However, that said, something drives the solar cycle and it seems that all we have are interesting theories but little of any real substance to explain it, much less predict it. My understanding (which is quite poor) is that there is some evidence of correlation between the barycentre and solar activity. The relative motion of the planets, particularly Jupiter, having the greatest effect. Trouble is, the numbers don't add up without having to introduce some radical new electromagnetic/gravity theory.

    In the long run, if solar activity is shown as being the driver of the recent warming (which I know you don't believe) then it's just possible that the barycentre (which can be plotted) could be useful as a indicator of future climate. Big leaps of faith though . . .

    I'm not a fan of astrology. However, I do think that the ancients had little else to do but peer up at the sky of an evening, and may well have stumbled across analogues for weather events based on the position of celestial objects. They gave them names and identities. Today, if such a relationship is discovered and understood it's just physics.

  • Comment number 33.

    Bit concerned about the divergence of the measured temps this month - seems very odd to me. Where is the 'remarkably good agreement' that is so often cited. Can't help thinking that if these organisations can get such different results with all of todays technology behind them, then the error bars for the reconstructed studies should be doubled or trebled.
    Anyone else think that Giss is gearing up for an attack on the Satellite boys or am I just being paranoid. (yeah probably)

  • Comment number 34.

    @LabMunkey, QuaesoVeritas and Quake

    Yep, I'm with Labmunkey. It's breaking the strong link between higher CO2 and vastly higher temperatures that's key, as that's where their case is at its weakest. The other places to concentrate efforts is their manipulations of data sets and results, the apparent linear nature of their modelling, their very poor understanding of clouds, their use of poor to very poor and sometimes highly inappropriate statistical techniques, their poor understanding of signal to noise ratios and the prevalent confirmation bias in their work in general.

    Never has so much rested on such poorly conducted science, they don't really have that much to stand on really and I'm, quite frankly, amazed that they are still trying to stand on it...... Cue Paul and some dubious links to a certain supposedly "Skeptical" web site.


    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

  • Comment number 35.

    Oops,

    "The other places to concentrate efforts is their manipulations" should read, "The other places to concentrate efforts are their manipulations"

    Mea Maxima Clupa,

    One of the Lobby.

  • Comment number 36.

    I think the knowledge we have, even though incomplete, justifies alarm and no amount of uncertainties and problems in the level of science you are talking about can change that. You'd need to demonstrate uncertainties in the fundamentals of the greenhouse effect or of past CO2 levels to alleviate alarm. That or demonstrate certainties in the areas you claim are uncertain to the effect that these things demonstrate the CO2 rise is okay.

    The problem statement is that this isn't a run of the mill CO2 rise that has happened many times in the past. When was the last time in Earth's history that CO2 doubled in 200 years? As far as I am aware we don't know of any analogous past case. The relevance of CO2 on climate is known and this science isn't in doubt. Eg there will be significant warming from elevated CO2. Even with low climate sensitivity a doubling of CO2 would still warm the Earth by an amount compariable to the warming of the entire 20th century and even that amount of warming would produce significant sea level rise and such like (with uncertainty being the magnitude and rate). And of course there's ocean acidification which is indepedent of climate sensitivity.

    So CO2s influence on the climate is significant (according to the amount we are raising it by) irrespective of how low understanding of details (eg as encapsulated by climate models) are. The uncertain magnititude of influence is the difference between disaster and no disaster, and that's the area that's uncertain.

    Id also add though that as far as uncertainy goes - we should apply it not only to climate sensitivity but also to CO2 projections. For example if we trigger a methane clathrate collapse even low climate sensitivity could lead to an amount of warming expected from high climate sensitivity without such an event. Or there is the possibility that we discover massive amounts of fossil fuel reserves in the next century and that fossil fuel emissions accelerate. There is the possibility that we'll remain pumping out fossil fuels for centuries more. In which case we could end up quadrupling CO2 levels, or more.

    It will only takes one of the hundreds of systems in the environment to change disasterously, perhaps one that has been overlooked. Maybe ocean acidification, or maybe sea level, or something else entirely (perhaps ironically a reduction in sunlight caused by negative cloud feedback). Where the scientists can't definitely say how things will change it also means they can't conclude there's no problem.

  • Comment number 37.

    Quake, you were doing quite well until that last paragraph.
    Stop! Nobody move . . . not even breathe . . .

  • Comment number 38.

    quake-

    "You'd need to demonstrate uncertainties in the fundamentals of the greenhouse effect or of past CO2 levels to alleviate alarm"

    Sorry to sound like a broken record but stalling temp and rapidly increasing co2 levels DOES provide a large uncertainty.

    Quake- the evidence is not as strong as you make out, there are SINGIFICANT assumptions made.

    Remove the GCM's and you have suprisingly little (i'm reffering specifically to the co2 link here- not evidence of a warming/changing climate- evidence of a cause).

  • Comment number 39.

    Quake I feel sorry for you mate. You really have swallowed the cAGW bait hook line and sinker. I know you will not be re-assured but others will by the simple fact that every prediction made by the alarmists has proved wrong.

    And a reality check. CO2 emissions are going to keep on rising. So the hypothesis will be tested. AGW is presented as a global problem but there is no global solution and no chance of a global solution, because when it comes down to the wire it is every country for itself. So we Brits appear to be happy to commit economic suicide in the face of a problem that may not exist and if it does cannot currently be solved whilst the rising economies of the East will continue to grow at our expense.

    The only thing that is certain is that we in this country are in a lose-lose situation.That is not going to change until the polis realise that their voters are more interested in self-preservation than looking after Gaia.

    Smoke me a kipper.

    Spanglerboy out

  • Comment number 40.

    #39. - Spanglerboy wrote:
    "And a reality check. CO2 emissions are going to keep on rising. So the hypothesis will be tested. AGW is presented as a global problem but there is no global solution and no chance of a global solution, because when it comes down to the wire it is every country for itself. So we Brits appear to be happy to commit economic suicide in the face of a problem that may not exist and if it does cannot currently be solved whilst the rising economies of the East will continue to grow at our expense."
    I couldn't agree with you more!
    It's not just climate change however.
    The free-market west is happily giving up it's economic dominance to China, by buying everything it needs from them and allowing it's own industry to go into decline. China is a COMMUNIST country, with none of the industrial or political rights which exist in the west. It has very cheap labour and it should not be allowed to compete with the west on an equal footing. However we will never stop this, because it is in the interests of individual companies in the west to use China as a cheap manufacturing location. Eventually, China will take over the entire world, so we had better get used to working for the Chinese.


  • Comment number 41.

    The Hadcrut3 global anomaly figure for March is 0.318c, up from 0.264c last month. As a result of this, the cumulative anomaly for 2011 has increased from 0.235c to 0.263c. This puts the HadCRUT3 anomaly slightly lower than NCDC/NOAA and it also contradicts the downward trend shown in UAH and RSS March anomalies.
    Despite the increase in the monthly anomaly, the 10 year linear trend has fallen from -0.649c/century last month, to -0.678c/century. The 50 year linear trend has increased from 1.393c/century to 1.395c/century.
    I haven't been able to download the N.H. and S.H. anomalies yet, because as far as I can tell, the files haven't been updated yet, although for some reason, I.E. refuses to update the global anomaly file either.

  • Comment number 42.

  • Comment number 43.

    Don't know how you got that one past the moderators brossen99 but it made me laugh. Lets just hope Mary Whitehouse doesn't drop by.

  • Comment number 44.

    The HadCRUT3 hemispheric data files have now been updated.
    The N.H. anomaly is 0.342c, up from 0.287c last month.
    HadCRUT3 therefore shows the lowest increase in the N.H. anomaly apart from UAH (not sure about RSS).
    The S.H. anomaly is 0.294c, up from 0.242c last month.
    HadCRUT3 therefore shows the highest increase in the S.H. anaomaly of the main anomaly measures (not sure about RSS).
    A mixed picture this month!

  • Comment number 45.

    Re 28:
    "Sorry to sound like a broken record but stalling temp and rapidly increasing co2 levels DOES provide a large uncertainty."

    The temp stall is too short to provide uncertainty. It's also not very uncertain if you take into account ENSO and the solar cycle:
    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2011/01/20/how-fast-is-earth-warming/

  • Comment number 46.

    Re 39:
    "I know you will not be re-assured but others will by the simple fact that every prediction made by the alarmists has proved wrong."

    Are you counting that arctic sea ice is declining faster than predicted as a prediction proved wrong?

    Temperature and sea level predictions have been quite good so far.

  • Comment number 47.

    Quake I am counting "In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme predicted that climate change would create 50 million climate refugees by 2010."

    Did it happen? Apparently not. See http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/04/15/the-un-disappears-50-million-climate-refugees-then-botches-the-disappearing-attempt/#more-38006

    Failed predictions of the sky falling in make you alarmists sound like the sad bloke that walks up and down the High Street telling shoppers that they have to repent their sins because the end is nigh! Just makes them want to buy that bargain all the more quickly.

    Your assertion that temperature and sea level predictions have been quite good so far did get a titter from my 3 year old.

    Keep up the good work. You create a sceptic with every post.

    Smoke me a kipper

  • Comment number 48.

    Quake
    "Temperature and sea level predictions have been quite good so far."

    Really?? I was under the direct impression that noone had precidted the current 'stalling' and that the predictions for the sea levels were based on, sub optimal rates??

    Re your #45

    "The temp stall is too short to provide uncertainty. It's also not very uncertain if you take into account ENSO and the solar cycle:"

    True- 1 or 2 more years i think's whats needed (15 in total to disprove all the models iirc). As for your second part- perhaps, but it still begs the question why these factors weren't modelled if they're so (obviously) important.

  • Comment number 49.

    #47 - Spanglerboy wrote:
    "Quake I am counting "In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme predicted that climate change would create 50 million climate refugees by 2010."

    Did it happen? Apparently not. See http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/04/15/the-un-disappears-50-million-climate-refugees-then-botches-the-disappearing-attempt/#more-38006"
    I see that the prediction has now been "updated" to 50million by 2002!
    I suspect that we will see an awful lot more re-writing of predictions over the next few years. If we are not careful, the original predictions will be removed and replaced without anyone realising.
    Of course, this sort of thing was predicted by George Orwell in 1984!

  • Comment number 50.

    ""In 2005, the United Nations Environment Programme predicted that climate change would create 50 million climate refugees by 2010.""

    I don't regard that a scientific prediction.

    "Your assertion that temperature and sea level predictions have been quite good so far did get a titter from my 3 year old."

    Well they aren't really bad:
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/sea-level-rise-predictions.htm
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/david-evans-understanding-goes-cold.html
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Hansen-1988-prediction-advanced.htm

    Here's an example of what I consider a bad prediction:
    http://www.warwickhughes.com/blog/?p=197

  • Comment number 51.

    #49.Did it happen? Apparently not.
    Sorry, I meant to say:

    I see that the prediction has now been "updated" to 50million by 2020!

  • Comment number 52.

    QV- JB has posted an entry on the divergence last month http://www.weatherbell.com/jb/?p=1138.
    Problem with this is that if we have to wait 30 years to resolve this both sides of the argument fear for the result. On the warmist side they fear it will be too late by then (although many say our present momentum means CO2 will keep rising anyway, so you could say it's already too late), and on the sceptical side they will say after 30 years of spending on prevention the financial damage will already have been done.
    Fact is the arguments above about predictions are immaterial, because nobody knows what will actually happen in the same way nobody predicted the result of the 2001-2010 decade.

  • Comment number 53.

    #52 - millennia wrote:
    "QV- JB has posted an entry on the divergence last month "
    Thanks for that, I might not have spotted it.
    As I understand it, JB is blaming the divergence of NASA/GISS and UAH on the differing base periods. However, while that explains the difference between +0.57c and -0.1c, I don't think (I will actually have to think about this a bit more), it explains the difference between +0.46c and +0.153c, which are both figures adjusted to the HadCRUT3 base period of 1961-90.
    As far as "simply watching the next 30 years of cold PDO and then AMO" is concerned, some of us will be very lucky to be still around in 30 years, so it isn't that simple. For interest, the March global anomalies, all adjusted to 1961-90 are as follows, with changes since last month in brackets:

    GISS/NASA = 0.460c (+0.130c)
    NOAA/NCDC = 0.352c (+0.086c)
    HADCRUT3 = 0.318c (+0.054c)
    UAH = 0.153c (-0.082c)
    RSS = 0.121c (-0.077c)

  • Comment number 54.

    Millennia; QV

    you're falling into a warmist trap. Surface temperature anomaly is a worthless metric for understanding climate. Good as a political tool but scientifically meaningless.

    And alright for a bit of fun on the predictions front and for Paul Hudson to blog on but really the sooner the scientific community get away from treating it as having any merit the better

    Smoke me a kipper

  • Comment number 55.

    "you're falling into a warmist trap. Surface temperature anomaly is a worthless metric for understanding climate."

    So there was no medieval warm period? and no little ice age? Because don't skeptics primarily note the characteristics of both being a difference in global surface temperature? And don't they even further note that those differences in global average temperature were enough to strongly affect human civilization?

    Global average surface temperature is an indicator of climate conditions. Changes in global average surface temperature tell us where climate conditions are heading and so are important to monitor and even try to forecast.

    The last glacial maximum 15000 years ago is associated with a global average surface temperature about 5 degrees C cooler than present. The "time of the dinosaurs" is associated with a global average surface temperature about as warm in the other direction. It's quite obvious that the global average metric is a strong indicator of conditions on the planet and should be watched closely.

    A lot of the blogs that argue that global average temperature is "meaningless" are largely missing the point. What metric do they recommend instead to monitor the pace and direction of climate change?

  • Comment number 56.

    Quake

    Climate changes. Get over it.

    Smoke me a kipper

  • Comment number 57.

    thats the point spanglerboy, climate changes for a number of reasons, including man. So we better observe things like global average temperature closely

  • Comment number 58.

    The Mensa International Science Forum does not do its own solar cycle predictions. A summary of known Solar Cycle forecasts can be found hear.

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/FORECASTING_SOLAR_CYCLE.pdf

    This is a warning that you should never employ or trust anyone who has been to the University of East Anglia, unless your country desperately needs a graph that shows Global Warming.

    http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/docs/are_we_feeling_warmer_yet.pdf

  • Comment number 59.

    #58. - paulcottingham wrote:
    "The Mensa International Science Forum does not do its own solar cycle predictions. A summary of known Solar Cycle forecasts can be found hear."
    Thanks, I will have a look a it when I get a chance.
    However, I am now puzzled why you mentioned Mensa at all.

    "This is a warning that you should never employ or trust anyone who has been to the University of East Anglia, unless your country desperately needs a graph that shows Global Warming."

    Interesting. I NEVER trust ANYTHING that ANYONE says about "climate change", until I have checked the facts myself, but sometimes that isn't possible. I wonder if Dr Salinger has explained his "adjustments" yet.

  • Comment number 60.

    Here's a thought: There's no such thing as Global Warming and our governments are frittering away a fortune in gold to combat a nonexistent threat.

  • Comment number 61.

    paulcottingham,

    Have you noticed in the icecap.us PDF the graphs of temperature on slide 2 and 6 don't even match.

    If you want to talk about bad graphs that PDF is a case study.

  • Comment number 62.

    Spanglerboy @ 54 - This divergence of different measuring systems is exactly the kind of evidence we all need to realise that nobody knows what the hell they are talking about, so in actual fact is very useful - I hope they keep them coming!
    Yes, the concept of global temperature is meaningless as clearly an average can be made up of completely different temperatures at the same locations but at different times. Considering the measurements all seem to have blind spots that they either don't measure or extrapolate into from other completely unrelated regions they all mount up to no better than a best guess.
    In the end what really does an averaged out figure of -0.1C or +0.4C mean to ANY local climate? Again, nobody knows, but they'll try any way they can to tell you that they do.

  • Comment number 63.

    You wait ages for controversial climate papers then two come along at once:

    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/2011JCLI4210.1

    A measured 14 year decrease in infrared downwelling radiation in complete contravention of the GHG theory that 14 years of CO2 rises should have made it go up. Once again this seems to show that the signature of CO2 is considerably minor to natural variability - in this case changes in cloud distribution over the 14 year period.
    Interestingly this also seems to concur with a cooling of the continguous 48 US states - http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/research/cag3/na.html
    (dial in annual mean temperature for 1997 to 2011). For those that really love to point to alarmist trends dial in Winters from 1997 to 2011, declining at a rate of 25 deg F per century - brrrr!

  • Comment number 64.

    @millennia,
    that's certianly an interesting paper. Has any more widespread analysis been performed (i.e. not just the southwest US?)

  • Comment number 65.

    "in complete contravention of the GHG theory that 14 years of CO2 rises should have made it go up"

    well no, anymore than ghg theory says temperatures at any particular location on earth in the past 14 years should have gone up.

  • Comment number 66.

    quake and millennia @ 65 and #63.

    I think i'm with Quake on this one- unless you can show that particular location is representative- or at least confirm the results in say, 3 other locations (?) then it's a stretch to say it is a complete contravention.

    It's a good start- but it's premature to say it's enough to knacker the theory.

    Further point- the GHG theory is not REALLY open to debate, it's the REAL WORLD effect that's the issue (i.e. taking into account feedbacks and other forcing factors).

  • Comment number 67.

    LabMunkey @ 66 "Further point- the GHG theory is not REALLY open to debate"

    That would mean it's not a theory, so therefore are you implying that in fact it is a physical LAW?
    There aren't actually many physical laws, and even gravity is still only a theory as we can't explain everything about how it works yet.
    We can't explain everything about GHG interaction either, which was what the original paper I posted at 18 (and quake refuse to even acknowledge) was in essence referring to. Not that CO2 isn't a GHG, but the interaction of spectral absorbtions of CO2, O2 and H2O interacted in such a way that the "blanket effect" was just too simplistic an explanation, and that in concentrations that reflected real world observations (workings shown) CO2 appeared to show a negative feedback.
    That is not to say in other combinations it wouldn't act in another way entirely.
    It was a discussion paper, but some people just aren't prepared to have the discussion. If you stop debate and you morph science into dogma.
    Scientists say "I'm probably wrong", religionists say "I couldn't be wrong".

  • Comment number 68.

    And yet again the warmest show in town - GISS, have published figures which show things are warmer than anyone else and that March was not in fact the coldest for 17 years!

    How on earth do they get away with such a warming bias year after year, any time I hear one of the more alarmist commentators waxing lyrical about AGW I just know that the figures quoted will be from GISS

    Keep an eye out everyone and see if what i said is borne out by your own experiences

  • Comment number 69.

    @ 67
    "Not that CO2 isn't a GHG, but the interaction of spectral absorbtions of CO2, O2 and H2O interacted in such a way that the "blanket effect" was just too simplistic an explanation, and that in concentrations that reflected real world observations (workings shown) CO2 appeared to show a negative feedback."

    This is not what you originally stated. If that was what you meant- you should have said so- it avoids confusion.

  • Comment number 70.

    @69 - Apologies if the introduction was flippant but actually I stand by that assertion - the GHG theory is all about positive feedback and this piece says that isn't so when all the atmosphere gases are taken into account. Saying a glass jar full of CO2 blocks IR radiation and PROVES the GHG theory is an example of over simplification and a classic experiment used to brainwash kids at school.
    I realise there are a plethora of skepticalscience articles on this, so no need to point me at any, my stance as always is about open minded science and not closing down the debate with "science is settled" nonsense.

  • Comment number 71.

    @ millennia.

    :-) You misunderstand my intentions here. I'm actually firmly in the skeptical camp and agree that you cannot extrapolate lab-bench experimentation to real-world systems (co2 ghg effect).

    I was just picking up that your post IMPLIED that the ghg itself effect was debatable (of course i know it's only a theory, but it's a fairly good one) when in fact you were trying to say something far more nuanced, that it does not apply in the same way to the climate due to all the other interconnected and related facets (feedbacks for example).

    This debate gets dragged into massive arguments over who said what and why- it's always best to be crystal clear on these issues.

 

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