Feb 03, 2014
U.S. December/January Temperatures 3rd Coldest in 30 Years
by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.
Icecap Note: back in Mid January we posted a model forecast that showed extreme cold for the last half of January. The GFS from January 17th that seemed so extreme appears to have underestimated the cold a bit as the CFS reanalysis data suggests. It was also colder west and south than forecast.The CONUS anomaly for that 16 day period was -7.142 or -12.86F!! All that at the coldest part of the winter climatologically speaking.
Yes, Virginia, it really has been a cold winter.
The winter months of December 2013 and January 2014 averaged over the contiguous 48 United States were the 3rd coldest Dec/Jan in the last 30 years. (click for large version):
The winter months of December 2013 and January 2014 averaged over the contiguous 48 United States were the 3rd coldest Dec/Jan in the last 30 years. (click for large version)
The analysis is based upon ~350 NOAA/NWS stations that measure temperatures every 6 hours (or more frequently), many located at airports. This is different from the official NOAA temperature product (update not yet available), which is based upon daily max/min temperatures measured at 1,000+ co-op stations. Those stations have had large adjustments made due to (among other things) changing time of observation (TOBS) over the years
NASA January polar vortex
An interesting feature is that 5 of the last 7 years have been below the 41-year average, which has happened only one other time in the 41-year period.
The data I use are adjusted for average spurious urban heat island (UHI) warming that increases with population density around the thermometer site. That relationship is shown at the end of this article. The analysis starts in only 1973 since that is the first year with a large amount of quality-controlled 6-hourly temperature data archived at NOAA.
So, does the cold winter disprove global warming theory? No more than an unusually warm winter proves the theory. It’s just what we used to call “weather”.
Jan 30, 2014
Europe Flees Economy-Destroying Green Initiatives While Obama Presses On
by Megan Toombs
C02 reduction regulations and subsidies for “green energy” are destroying the European economy, and the United States is next.
But Europe’s waking up. After years of trying to lead the push to go green, it has turned around and begun steep cuts in its climate protection goals. Why? To save member states’ economies.
For example, Germany, one of the strongest proponents of environmental regulations in the European Union (EU), has seen energy prices soar, making its prices the highest in Europe. According to the Telegraph,, a three-person household will soon be paying ninety euros a month for electricity ($123.05) and 300,000 households per year are having their power turned off because they can’t pay the bill.
These high prices are in part due to the large subsidies (taxes) given for wind and solar energy. In addition, “green” energy producers are guaranteed a offline, and the rest are scheduled to be shut down by 2022.
Germany, like all who subscribe to the environmentalists’ viewpoint, has put being “green” over the good of its people. They have forgotten God’s created order, and the outcome has been more and more people, usually the poorest, hurt by bad policy. Environmentalists strongly support subsidies for “green” energy, but “Thou shalt not steal” is a commandment that should not be forgotten. Germany has been stealing from its people to fund its solar and wind habit, and, as with all addicts, a time comes when that habit either has to be kicked, or severe damage ensues.
Because of the disturbing economic situation and German industries’ fears that they will no longer be competitive, Germany’s Economy Minister, Sigmar Gabriel, wants to cut “green” subsidies by one-third by 2015. But is it too little too late?
The EU has reduced its climate protection goals so that though targets will be binding on the EU level, they will not be binding on member states. Goals include a target of 27% “green” energy production, but with no guidelines for how member states meet that target.
The European Commission, executive branch of the EU, has called for “an industrial renaissance” in Europe. Recognizing that “green” regulation’s damage to industry is part of the reason for Europe’s failing economy (unemployment in EU was 10.9% as of October), the Commission is attempting to encourage a more industry-friendly economic environment.
The Commission intends to make the regulatory environment more “stable and predictable” and make EU laws “easier and reduce bureaucratic burdens.”
Included in a more industry-friendly environment are laws allowing hydro-fracking for shale gas. The EU is setting basic principles for health and safety but will not be “meddling in the energy mix that is to be chosen by member states,” claims Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.
This has lifted pressure on the UK to build wind and solar farms and left it free to pursue nuclear and shale gas energy options. Prime Minister David Cameron announced January 27 that his government was ripping up “80,000 pages of environmental protections and building guidelines.”
Meanwhile, President Obama continues pushing the United States toward the brink by forging ahead with plans to fight the global warming that hasn’t happened in at least the last 17 years, using measures that will cost $trillions by mid-century but will cause no significant reduction in global temperature by the end of the century.
One of President Obama’s means to force the environmentalist agenda on Americans is The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Its war on coal destroyed between 13,000 and 17,000 direct and indirect jobs in 2012 alone due to announced coal plant closures. Fast forward to 2014 and the EPA has announced a regulation that would effectively kill the coal industry. Any new coal power plant built, whether to replace or add to existing plants, must meet an emissions standard that is impossible with current technology.
Then of course there is the stonewalling of the Keystone XL Pipeline extension. This pipeline that President Obama claimed would only “create about 50 permanent jobs,” has been estimated by his own State Department to create 42,000 jobs.
At the state level there are also significant economic hardships from enactments of “green” policies. Colorado has seen a 20% faster increase in energy prices compared to the rest of the U.S. Why? Because Colorado followed Europe’s lead and passed a renewable energy mandate in 2004. Prices jumped even higher after these mandates were strengthened in 2007, 2010, and 2013. This translates into $4.2 billion in higher electricity costs since 2007.
Americans will continue to lose jobs due to environmental regulations, as well as increasing energy prices and higher taxes. Let’s save ourselves some heartache and learn a lesson from Europe.
Megan Toombs is Communications and Outreach Coordinator for the Cornwall Alliance.
Jan 22, 2014
Big chill expected to stay until 2040
The Weather Channel advises us to watch out for the storm behind winter storm Janus. Oh my this really looks bad. It may even be worse than the dreaded polar vortex. As Anthony Watts adds: “We all know about the Weather Channel’s ridiculous practice of naming winter storms. The latest name for a storm in “Janus” which is the name of the Roman two-faced god. In ancient Roman religion and myth, Janus is the god of beginnings and transitions, thence also of portals, doors, passages, endings and time. This little ooops moment in live broadcasting on TWC can certainly be categorized as a “portal"." See what you Direct TV subscribers are missing!
As the largest snowfall of the winter hits the eastern U.S., politicians and interest groups will claim the latest weather is proof of their position in the climate debate, but a prominent climatologist says this is nothing more than the latest development in a cooling cycle that started over a decade ago and could continue into 2040.
Climate-change activists regularly assert that volatile weather events are on the rise due to human activity that impacts our climate, while skeptics point to the snow and cold snaps as further proof the earth is not running a fever.
Dr. Tim Ball taught climatology for many years at the University of Winnipeg and is the author of the newly released book, “The Deliberate Corruption of Climate Science.” He told WND it’s foolhardy to draw conclusions on overall climate trends based on one weather system or even one winter, but he believes the harsher winter is part of a cooling cycle.
“What happens as the cooling begins, the jet stream moves from west to east in very large waves, but the amplitude, that is the north-south orientation of those waves, increases. It’s called a meridional pattern of weather, and that’s why you see the record colds that you had in the U.S. recently, but also record warms,” Ball explained.
“Look at eastern Australia as an example, or Siberia earlier in the winter. So if you imagine these waves where you’ve got cold air pushing toward the equator in one area, you’ve also got warmer air pushing further toward the poles in other areas. That’s why you’ve got this increasing variability of the weather,” said Ball, who noted that history tells us exactly what these conditions mean.
“If you look at the historic record, and I mean going over 10,000 years, this pattern occurs as the earth starts its cooling down process. And that’s what’s going to happen,” he said. “We’re going to be in this cooling until at least 2040.”
The cooling started 10 years earlier near the South Pole, according to Ball, who said the growth in Antarctic ice is why we witnessed the research vessel and its rescue ship trapped in ice in the middle of summer in the southern hemisphere.
Ball said the cooling for us will not only continue for nearly 30 more years, but the depths of the cooling cycle could mean we experience some historic chills.
“There’s a debate about how much cooling will occur, but it’s related to the changes in the sun, the sunspot cycles,” Ball explained. “That’s the predominant control of long-term temperature patterns. The scientists that I’ve been working with a lot, we think, as I said, that’s it’s going to continue cooling until 2040, certainly getting to cooler temperatures than we experienced around 1800 or 1820 and possibly get as cold as it was back in what’s called the ‘Little Ice Age’ when you had three feet of ice on the Thames in England in 1683.”
In “Eco Tyranny,” Brian Sussman reveals how the left is using phony environmental crises to demonize capitalism and liberty and purposefully withhold America’s vast natural resources and how the Obama administration is piloting the plan.
Looking at that historic record is critical to understanding how climate naturally changes over time, says Ball, and he contends trying to define climate or even policy on recent weather events is disingenuous.
“The difference is the difference between weather and climate. Weather is what you experience if go and stand outside right now. It’s the combination of thousands of variables, everything from cosmic radiation in deep space to geothermal heat off the bottom of the oceans,” he said.
“Climate is the average weather in a region or the change in the average weather over time. That’s what I’ve been studying all my career is climate change and how it changes over time. You cannot say any one particular event is due to climate change. The only way you can do that is step back and look at the trend,” said Ball, who argued that many scientists today are simply misusing historic climate data to suit their political ends.
“It depends what starting point you pick on the temperature record or the precipitation record and then the ending point. You can prove anything you want from the record by selecting the time period that you want to look at,” Ball said.
“For example, since 1900, the world warmed up to 1940. It cooled down to 1980. It warmed up to 1998, and now it’s cooling down again. You could pick any one of those periods and say, ‘Oh look, it’s warming or it’s cooling’ and then say it’s going to keep on going and it’s the end of the world, which of course is what they’ve done with the recent warming from 1980 up to 2000,” he said.
After years of contending there was an unrelenting rise in global temperature, climate-change activists now contend that extreme heat, extreme cold or active hurricane and tornado seasons all mean human activity is making our climate more volatile. Ball said good science flatly proves those claims false.
“Actually, the number of tornadoes is dramatically down. The number of hurricanes, particularly the ones coming ashore in the U.S., is significantly down. So, their arguments are completely wrong,” he said.
“The supposed increase in storminess is scientifically wrong because the storms occur along the boundary between the cold polar air and the warmer tropical air, which is essentially across the central U.S., between 30-50 degrees of latitude. If you decrease that temperature difference across that boundary, which is called the polar front, then you get fewer storms, not more,” he said.
“The official argument is that the polar regions are going to warm up more than the tropical regions, which actually would reduce the number of storms, but they’re claiming it will increase it,” he said. “It’s just another example of climate science being used for a political agenda.”
Jan 20, 2014
DEMING: Another year of global cooling
Dr. David Deming
Global warming is nowhere to be found. The mean global temperature has not risen in 17 years and has been slowly falling for approximately the past 10 years. In 2013, there were more record-low temperatures than record-high temperatures in the United States.
At the end of the first week in January, a brutal spell of cold weather settled over most of the country. Multiple cold-temperature records were shattered across the country. Some sites experienced frigid conditions not seen since the 19th century. Chicago and New York City broke temperature records set in 1894 and 1896, respectively. These extremes were not singular, but exemplary of conditions throughout much of the continent. Temperatures in Chicago were so cold that a polar bear at the Lincoln Park Zoo had to be taken inside.
The onset of polar conditions over the United States was also a reminder that cold weather in general is more inimical to human welfare than warm weather. The operation of power grids, gas pipelines and oil refineries was disrupted. Passengers on Amtrak trains were left stranded, and thousands of flights were delayed or canceled. By Jan. 7, the media were reporting at least 21 deaths directly related to the cold.
The January freeze caused $3 million in damage to vineyards in Ohio. Citrus crops in Florida apparently escaped damage, but California growers were not so lucky. A weeklong spell of cold weather in early December damaged up to half of the state’s $1.5 billion citrus crop. California farmers may (or may not) take consolation in the fact that their state government is attempting to further cool the climate by mandating a reduction in carbon-dioxide emissions.
As frigid conditions settled over the nation, global-warming alarmists went into full denial mode. We were emphatically lectured that singular weather events are not necessarily indicative of long-term climate trends. True enough, but haven’t we been repeatedly told that weather events such as hurricanes Sandy and Katrina are unequivocal proof of global warming? If we’re really in the middle of a “climate crisis,” is it not remarkable that low-temperature records from the 19th century were shattered?
Weather extremes also seem to bring out the lunatic fringe. Of course, when we’re discussing global warming, it’s difficult to tell where the mainstream stops and the fringe begins. We were subjected to the oxymoronic explanation that frigid weather was, in fact, caused by global warming. According to Time magazine, cold temperatures in the United States were a result of global warming forcing the polar vortex southward. But in 1974, the same Time informed us that descent of the polar vortex into temperate zones was a harbinger of a new Ice Age.
It is true that the extent of sea ice at the North Pole is slightly below the 30-year average. However, an event near Antarctica reminded us that sea ice there is near an all-time high. In late December, a ship of global-warming researchers became stuck in Antarctic sea ice. The ice was so thick that two icebreakers sent to rescue the scientists were unable to break through. Passengers had to be removed by helicopter. Despite all the claims that the poles are melting and polar bears drowning, the global extent of sea ice remains stubbornly and significantly above the long-term mean. Apparently, the buildup of heat from global warming is producing more ice, not less, in defiance of both the laws of physics and common sense.
It seems now that everyone is qualified to have an opinion on global warming. In a recent column, theology professor Susan Thistlethwaite explained that “frigid weather” was an “example of the kind of violent and abrupt climate change that results from global warming.” Sometimes, I just feel so stupid. I thought cold weather was attributable to the annual phenomenon known as “winter.” The good professor also claimed that cold weather in the United States is a punishment sent by God for “our sinful failure to take care of the Creation.”
If the current cooling trend continues for a few more years, the theory of global warming faces imminent extinction. It will then join a long list of other expired environmental doom-and-gloom predictions, including overpopulation, peak oil and nuclear winter.
David Deming is a geophysicist, professor of arts and sciences at the University of Oklahoma, and the author of “Black & White: Politically Incorrect Essays on Politics, Culture, Science, Religion, Energy and Environment” (CreateSpace, 2011).
No Professor Susan Thistlethwaite the cold may be God’s way of stopping the lunatic fringe alarmists swimming in grant money and politicians who were drooling at the prospects of carbon taxes that would finance their continued destruction of the America we love.
Jan 18, 2014
An Admission: Nature in Control
Joe Bastardi, Patriot Post
This article caught my eye. Its authors examine reasons for the pause in global warming, and coincidentally, the sun, the oceans and stochastic events show up. I say coincidentally because that’s exactly what I opined would cause cooling, and got roundly trashed for by global warming proponents, seven years ago on The O’Reilly Factor in what I termed the triple crown of cooling.
This article on the matter is from May 2010. The idea was first presented in 2007. The factors contributing to the triple crown of cooling : 1.) oceanic cycles; 2.) solar cycles; and 3.) a wild card: volcanic activity.
Since 2005, temperatures have done this:
How do you deny this? The aforementioned article doesn’t; its authors simply try to say the heat is “hiding in the ocean.” Yet we see Dr. Bill Gray from the 1970s opining that this is what happens naturally in his ideas on the Meridional Overturning Circulation, which is summed up nicely in this latest paper. (Translated: When it cools in one part of the ocean, it warms in another, and vice versa). I guess the authors of the above study have not read, or dismissed, Dr. Gray’s ideas. - odd given what Dr. Gray predicted in the ‘70s turned out to be right.
All these are perfectly logical, natural and, most importantly, scientifically sound explanations that are being passed off as AGW-induced. So why is the “come to God moment” of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) immediately accepted, but the ideas of one who was right from 40 years ago is not?
I was hammered by the Left when I took a stand on this. Basically, they are admitting we are right. By acknowledging the sun, the oceans and other non-human based events are causing this, they are simply admitting that these control whatever CO2 is purported to do. No one denies the climate is fluid. No one denies CO2 does play some role in the magnificent setup that makes life possible on Earth and its contribution to the estimated 33 degree Celsius of warming greenhouse gasses add to the temperature of the planet. (99Water vapor being 100 times more prominent than CO2, carbon dioxide’s part varies from .4 to .7 of the warming.) But there is no tipping point, nor is one even truly possible given the nature of the entire system. But in showing the explanation for why the warming has paused, and deflecting it to other areas, they are: a.) now telling us something they did not tell us before, which of course means we have spent 17 years taking precautions against a dire forecast they issued that has not materialized; b.) they are admitting that nature can control what input man has; and c.) they are listing the very reasons I brought up seven years ago, and became an object of targeted attacks by many, as the reason the pause has taken place.
So what happens when we continue to be right? Where will the blame be placed then? When does the statue of limitations run out on what has been a huge anchor on our nation?
My forecast remains the same: That as measured by objective satellite, the global temperature by 2030 will return to where it was in 1978. It’s intuitive that the sun, oceans and stochastic events all have much more influence than a gas increasing at 1.8 parts per million a year, with the increase yearly a smaller percentage of the total (as the total grows, its percentage does not unless the increase grows). The fact is, it’s boxed in by all that is natural around it, and that’s the message of the so-called pause (and of late, the reversal).
Notes and asides: This cold winter was loudly forecasted by Weatherbell along with the major cold shots well in advance, and the ones to follow in the coming couple of weeks which I believe will cause a great deal of economic impact, as well as take its toll in other areas. I want to assure you, I used no CO2 in the preparation of the forecast, nor was CO2 involved in any of the considerations that lead to the forecast. See? I am trying to keep my carbon footprint small.
Joe Bastardi is chief forecaster at WeatherBELL Analytics, a meteorological consulting firm.