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June 2008: Cooler than June 1988

Original post made by Jarred, Midtown, on Jul 5, 2008

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Comments (11)

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Posted by Mike
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 5, 2008 at 3:38 am

Jarred, Here's another scientific fact. Climate is *non-Linear*. Just because we get a 2-3 year period of cooling doesn't mean that the planet is cooling. You seriously need to brush up on non-linear, complex, dynamic multivariate feedback systems

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Posted by Walter E. Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 5, 2008 at 7:08 am

Mike, time for you to take a refresher course on scientific bafflegab, urban heat island "correction" factors and selective statistics; all as taught by Hansen, Ehrlich, et al & Sagan and the rest of the lying for a "good" cause pimps. Learn how to do a "russian circumcision" on raw data. Cut off anything that hangs over. Mike, you are a poster boy for Hoffer's first book.

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Posted by knock it off, Hanson
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 5, 2008 at 7:19 am

Hanson has needed meds for a long time...or at least a course in how to graciously admit an error and knock the ever growing chip off his shoulder.

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Posted by common sense
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 5, 2008 at 8:07 am

City council can declare victory! Palo Alto's efforts have proven decisive, and now they can take the $150k for the environmental position and use it to help fund the COPs for the public safety building.

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Posted by Too many agendas
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 5, 2008 at 8:09 am

Whatever your stance on global warming, the link provided is certainly misleading. They cherry-picked the data to show a cooling. It is unfortunate that both sides of the debate tend to do this to "prove" their point.

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Posted by Walter E. Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 5, 2008 at 8:45 am

What if Einstein's theory had been declared the official viewpoint? There goes modern civilization. I loath and fear repression even of gross error, because I know that it is only the right to be wrong that can advance mankind. It is the Hansens and the Sagans and the Ehrlichs who want to supress dissent forcibly, a dead giveaway that their arguments could not stand up under vigerous debate.

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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2008 at 4:24 pm

It's hard to determine the validity of the linked plot but it certainly doesn't support the premise. Just because two points 20 years apart in noisy data indicate a cooler June 2008 than June 1988 says nothing about global warming or not. tigerhawk and Jarred need to look at more data and do a more thorough analysis.

Why don't you plot some moving averages of the data to remove some of the noise?

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Posted by Mike
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 5, 2008 at 4:26 pm

Walter, is climate non-liner, or not? You sound like the leader if the Inquisition.

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Posted by dave
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 5, 2008 at 10:33 pm

For those who want facts, please take time to read the following:

Go to Web Link There are two temperature records, one shows the global average surface temperature since 1880. The warming is just under 1 deg. C for the 20th century. The second image shows the same warming separated into land and ocean. Both have warmed, the land more so than the ocean. These observations come from a large network of stationary land-based thermometers, as well as many samples of ocean surface water temperature.

Is 1 deg. C significant? Consider that the combined land and ocean temperature graph includes green error bars at the beginning, middle, and end of the temperature record indicating the best guess of the range of uncertainty in the temperature measurements. These error bounds do not overlap, suggesting that there is a high probability that the warming is real and not just an artifact of some random or systematic error in the temperature measurements.

Another way to think about the significance is to consider the heat capacity of water. It takes a 1 calorie to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water 1 deg C and serves as the formal definition of a calorie.

Now think about how many grams of water comprise the world's oceans down to 1000m deep and you begin to realize that it takes a tremendous number of calories to warm that much water even a fraction of a degree Celsius. It is impossible to warm that much water without some significant change in the energy balance of the planet. That is, over the last 100 years a tremendous amount of excess energy has been absorbed by the ocean and atmosphere. That energy had to come from somewhere.

The most likely explanation is that the rise in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere since the industrial revolution has impeded the emission of infrared energy that the Earth emits to space. This has caused an imbalance where more solar energy is being absorbed by the Earth than there is infrared energy being emitted back out. This is the most likely source of excess energy that has been heating the ocean and atmosphere for the past century.

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Posted by Walter E. Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 6, 2008 at 6:45 am

Sorry, Dave, I can't do that - the mission is too important.
[Was I the first to say that to you?]
The most likely explanation to me is that the variations in solar energy output more than explain any rise, and the increase in surface temperatures of other planets lends credence to this. If you ask nicely, I will lend you my Ocam's razor. Cosmic rays might make some difference, but any thesis that our climate is metastable must be considered against history.
And, Mike, I am no leader of anything. I am an individual. When you run out of Mesias, you might try it.

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Posted by dave
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 7, 2008 at 5:40 pm

Walter. Thanks for the comments. Can you cite your sources for the increase in temperatures of other planets? Hopefully the measurements will be over scores of years.

I will check with my erudite friends and ask them how much variation there is in solar energy output over what period of time. I would expect the variations to be about an 11 year cycle (yes? no?). If so, why is there a consistent rise in the earth's surface temperature over a greater than 100 year period?

Occam's razor is a great tool except when new information is found that skews its results. And we are still learning about our earth. d

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