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August 10, 2007

Most Amusing

I do like predictons like this:

Here is the climate forecast for the next decade; although global warming will be held in check for a few years, it will come roaring back to send the mercury rising before 2014.

So any observed slow down, or even reversal, is now further evidence of climate change. See! See! it's already in our model! Those glaciers you see coming down the Yorkshire Moors are evidence of gorbal worming!

They might even be correct as well.

The new model developed at the Met's Hadley Centre in Exeter, and described in the journal Science, predicts that warming will slow during the next few years but then speed up again, and that at least half of the years after 2009 will be warmer than 1998, the warmest year on record.

Hmmm. Now, I'm very much a sceptic on the subject of what we do about climate change, not much of one on its existence (and again, very much one on the likely severity)  but I thought this was interesting:

Well, it turns out, according to the NASA GISS database, that 1998 was not even the hottest year of the last century.  This is because many temperatures from recent decades that appeared to show substantial warming have been revised downwards.  Here is how that happened (if you want to skip the story, make sure to look at the numbers at the bottom).

Nope, I've no idea whether or why there were those changes: perhaps some reader more up to date with climate models and the like could enlighten me? But if it is indeed true that 1934 was the warmest year of last century (with four of the ten warmest being in that decade, another one in the 20s, one in the 50s), don't we at least have to change the rhetoric a touch?

August 10, 2007 in Climate Change | Permalink


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A major reason for the changes was fixing a Y2K bug (!) in what is laughably called the climate model. There's a write-up on it somewhere, but I've forgotten where and can't find it with a quick search.

Posted by: Mike | Aug 10, 2007 9:53:45 AM

I'm not entirely sure how important such records are, but this is the US surface temperature, not the world temperature, so I have no idea why you are pretending it is.

Tim adds: I'm not pretending that it's anything. I'm asking people to explain it to me, aren't I?

Posted by: Matthew | Aug 10, 2007 10:27:22 AM

Here's a link:


that explains it.


Posted by: ScotsToryB | Aug 10, 2007 10:59:33 AM

Simply MinTruth in action. Rewrite history so that you appear to have predicted it all along. In another few years the models will again be readjusted to reflect the likley reality, the predictions of a few years back being conveniently forgotten. The taxes and increased bureaucratic interference in people's lives will not of course be adjusted, except upwards. Quite shameless.

Posted by: Ian Reid | Aug 10, 2007 11:03:07 AM

The warmest year in the last century was 1998. Your source is rather misleading.

Posted by: Tim Lambert | Aug 10, 2007 1:00:19 PM

I would suggest that it is self-evident that the weather is getting warmer - we used to have proper winters when I was a kid. However I see no reason to panic, common sense, science and engineering can continue to improve peoples lives if the politicians don't get in the way.

"First thing we do, lets kill all the greenies" - Henry VI, part 2

Posted by: johnnybonk | Aug 10, 2007 2:37:47 PM

This clearly means we are in for 2 hard winters, or at least the Met Office think so (though so do my rowans, at least for 07/08).

Best regards

Posted by: Nigel Sedgwick | Aug 10, 2007 4:51:50 PM

Wow, they predict cooler years after it's pissed down all summer, genius! Getting their excuses in early I reckon.

Posted by: Magnusw | Aug 10, 2007 5:37:47 PM

Yep Tim, keep up the denial mate, that's the spirit. Yes, this is the US temperature record only, fine. 1998 was declared the warmest year on the basis of what ? The temperature records kept by the various US organisations are probably the best maintained in the world, and these have been shown to be significantly in error.

The rest of the surface temperature record has quite simply not ever been properly tested. There is, for example, a wildly inaccurate assumption made about sea surface temperatures, the affect of which has never been properly investigated (think buckets versus engine intakes).

One must remember however that Tim still believes that Michael Mann's 1998 proxy study (MBH98 and its extension, MBH99) is essentially correct and that it was honestly presented. Anyone for the tooth fairy or Santa Claus ?

Tim adds: No, I've no opinion in Mann: think the jury is still out on that one.

Posted by: Ed Snack | Aug 11, 2007 1:24:49 AM

1998 remains the warmest hear globally,as the N in NASA stands for National, which is what the GISS temperature data base is.

Everybody seems to be confused about this , since the globalization of this factoid started with Limbaugh ,whose dittoheads are legion,but not given to checking his facts

Posted by: Russell Seitz | Sep 7, 2007 8:19:41 AM