The Global Warming Challenge

Evidence-based forecasting for climate change

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Archive for the ‘global warming’ Category

Claims 2019 warmest Australian year inconsistent with satellite record

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The UAH global average  temperature anomaly relative to the 1981 to 2010 average was 0.56°C in December, up from 0.55°C the previous month. The 2019 average was the second warmest year in the 12 years of The Bet so far, as is shown by the blue stepped line in the “Whole-Earth Thermometer” chart on the top-right of this page.

While the global anomaly for 2019 was closer to the IPCC-Gore 3°C-per-century warming extrapolation line than to the Green-Armstrong-Soon no-trend forecast, it was below the warming line, as it has remained for all but two of the Bet’s 12 years to date.

The Climate Bet is concerned with the global average temperature anomaly, but local and regional anomalies do not follow in lock step, and sometimes differ markedly. The claim by Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) that “2019 was … the warmest … year on record for Australia … since consistent national temperature records began in 1910” is therefore not inconsistent with what was a relatively unremarkable year in the global record.

But how does the BOM’s warmest-on-record claim—based on smattering of “homogenized” land-based readings—stack up against the UAH satellite (lower troposphere) data for Australia?

Not very well, it turns out.

According the UAH data, 2019 was only the fourth warmest year in Australia in the 41 years of the UAH satellite temperature anomaly record. The warmest year in the UAH data was 2017, with an average anomaly of 0.71°C. The figure for 2019 was 0.58°C. The years 2016 and 1998 were also warmer for Australia.

Roy Spencer—one of the researchers behind the UAH data—has provided an analysis of the relationship between claims of anthropogenic global warming and measured temperature, precipitation, and Australian bush fires.

November 2019 sees global temperature above Bet warming line

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With the release of the UAH November 2019 global temperature anomaly, there have been 28 months in which the anomaly equaled or exceeded the 3°C-per-century warming trend line projected from the 2007 Bet base year average. That compares with the 57 months in which the anomaly has been less than or equal to the scientific no-change forecast proposed by Green, Armstrong, and Soon (2009) and the basis of Scott Armstrong’s challenge to Al Gore to bet on forecasts of global temperatures.

Those figures give a sense of how modest the IPCC’s 3°C-per-century warming trend is compared to month-to-month variations over the 143 months (nearly 12 years) of the extended Bet so far. The 28 months of temperature anomalies greater than or equal to the warming trend account for nearly 20% of months, while close to 40% of months have been cooler than the 2007 base year average.

For the latest data, click on the “Whole Earth Thermometer” toward the top right of this page.

Written by admin

December 13th, 2019 at 9:27 am

September 2019 anomaly above IPCC/Gore warming for first time in 2 years

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September recorded the warmest global mean temperature anomaly since October of 2017. If the months of the fourth quarter of 2019 stay on the warmer side, 2019 could be the fourth year in twelve in which the annual average global temperature anomaly has been closer to a 3°C-per-century warming trend than to no-change. For the updated chart of progress of the Climate Bet, click on the Whole Earth Thermometer image on the top right of the screen.

Written by Heidi Mercer

October 12th, 2019 at 10:52 am

No change in global average temperatures from July to August

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The UAH global average lower troposphere temperature anomaly remained unchanged in August 2019 from the previous month at 0.38°C. The month counts as the seventh win for Mr Gore out of the eight months of this year so far—the 44th win out of the 140 months of the extended bet, so far.

With no change in the average, it is interesting to observe to what extent the regional averages changed. Average temperature anomalies in the tropics fell from 0.61°C to 0.37°C over the land and rose from 0.40°C to 0.44°C over the sea. The corresponding figures for the northern polar region were a rise from 0.25°C to 0.53°C and a fall from 0.42°C to 0.33°C, and for the southern polar region were a fall from 0.86°C to 0.51°C, and a rise from 0.05°C to 0.38°C.

To see the updated “Whole-Earth Thermometer” chart summarising the progress of the Climate Bet so far, click on the graph on the top right of the page to see a larger version with data.

Written by admin

September 19th, 2019 at 9:21 pm

June 2019 warmer than May, on average

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At 0.47°C, June’s global temperature anomaly was up from May’s, and was the warmest since October 2017, 20 months ago. The June figure was also slightly warmer than the 2007 Bet base year’s maximum monthly anomaly of 0.43°C.

The experience of regions varied considerably, however, as US readers will likely have noticed. The anomaly for the 48 contiguous U.S. states was -0.64°C, which was even cooler than May, the previous month. Australia’s anomaly, while positive, was cooler than the previous 3 months, as was the case with the entire southern hemisphere over the land.

The northern polar region experienced a positive anomaly (0.90°C), but that was cooler than those of the 4 previous months, while the southern polar region experienced a negative anomaly (-0.39°C) that was cooler than the anomalies of the 8 previous months.

The updated chart (Whole Earth Thermometer), summarising the progress of The Climate Bet so far, can be inspected by clicking on the thumbnail chart to the top right of the screen.

Written by admin

July 5th, 2019 at 11:26 am

“Do we face dangerous global warming?”

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Was the title of a talk that Scott Armstrong gave to his fellow Lehigh University Graduating Class of 1959 at their 60th Reunion on June 7. The invited talk addressed the question of whether the alarm over dangerous manmade global warming is a valid scientific claim, and presents findings from Scott’s research with Kesten Green. A copy of the slides for the talk is available from ResearchGate, here.

Written by admin

June 11th, 2019 at 1:44 pm

April 2019 warmer, again

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The global mean UAH lower troposphere temperature anomaly ticked up again in April. So far, 2019 global monthly averages have all been warmer than the warmest month in 2018. For a larger chart showing the history of the Climate Bet, including the latest data, click on the Whole-Earth Thermometer image to the top right of this page.

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May 13th, 2019 at 11:30 am

March quarter 2019 temperatures warmer than 2018

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The UAH lower troposphere temperature global average anomalies for the first three months of 2019 have been higher than at any stage during 2018 to the extent that they were slightly closer to the 3°C-per-century warming projection from the IPCC than they were to the no-change (no-trend) forecast. By contrast, every month of 2018 was closer to the no-trend forecast. Over the 135 month term to-date of the extended Climate Bet, the global average temperature has been closer to the no-change forecast than to the IPCC “dangerous warming” forecast for more than 70% of months.

Written by admin

April 12th, 2019 at 11:51 am

A warmer start to 2019 sees January a winning month for Mr Gore

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At 0.37°C, the January 2019 anomaly was the highest since since December 2017. Just above the mid-point between the no-change from the 2007 average forecast of 0.159°C and the IPCC/Gore 3°C-per-century “dangerous” warming forecast for January of 0.505°C, the month counts as a win for Mr Gore.

So far, the monthly wins tally stands at:

dangerous warming trend: 40 months
no trend (Armstrong):         93 months.

Over the course of the Bet to date, the dangerous warming forecast has never been the better forecast for as many as 40% of months. The no-trend, no need for policy action, forecast remains the best bet, having won just under 70% of months so far.

Written by admin

February 12th, 2019 at 2:10 am

2018 year ends on a low note, temperature wise

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The UAH global mean temperature anomaly data for December 2018 is out: the figure of 0.25°C.

The average for the year was 0.23°C, with a maximum anomaly of 0.32°C and a minimum of 0.15°C. None of those figure is much different from the 2007 Bet base year average of 0.16°C, and are all well within the base year range of -0.04°C to +0.43°C.

Interestingly, in the now 11 years since 2007, monthly global mean temperature anomalies have fallen outside the 2007 range on only 32 of the 132 months, with nearly half of those months (15) falling below the 2007 minimum.

The 2018 year was cooler than any of the previous three years, and cooler also than 2010. In other words, 2018 was cooler than 40% of the previous ten years.

So how do things stand with the extended “Bet” between the no-change model forecasts and the IPCC’s 3°C-per-century “dangerous” warming projection (standing in for Mr Gore’s “tipping point” warnings)?

After 11 years, the Bet’s summary measure—the cumulative absolute error of the warming projection relative to that of the no-change forecasts—is 1.211. In other words, the errors of the “dangerous” warming projection have been 21.1% larger then the errors of the forecasts from a simple model that assumes that we do not know enough about the causes of climate change to make predictions over policy-relevant horizons that are more accurate than an extrapolation of the previous year’s average into the distant future.

Note also that unbiased forecasts would be expected be warmer than the actual temperature as often as they were cooler. To date, the actual temperature has been equal to or warmer than the IPCC/Gore projection for only 18.2% of months. That figure compares with the 40.9% of months that the temperature anomaly has been less than or equal to no-change projection.

For the latest data and chart summarising the Bet, click on the Whole-Earth Thermometer on the top right of site.

Written by admin

January 7th, 2019 at 2:10 pm