UAH Temperature Update for Feb. 2011: -0.02 deg. C

March 2nd, 2011 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.


2010 1 0.542 0.675 0.410 0.635
2010 2 0.510 0.553 0.466 0.759
2010 3 0.554 0.665 0.443 0.721
2010 4 0.400 0.606 0.193 0.633
2010 5 0.454 0.642 0.265 0.706
2010 6 0.385 0.482 0.287 0.485
2010 7 0.419 0.558 0.280 0.370
2010 8 0.441 0.579 0.304 0.321
2010 9 0.477 0.410 0.545 0.237
2010 10 0.306 0.257 0.356 0.106
2010 11 0.273 0.372 0.173 -0.117
2010 12 0.181 0.217 0.145 -0.222
2011 1 -0.010 -0.055 0.036 -0.372
2011 2 -0.018 -0.041 0.004 -0.350

The global average lower tropospheric temperature anomaly for February 2010 (-0.02 deg. C) was almost identical to January’s anomaly (-0.01 deg. C), and even the Northern Hemisphere (-0.04 deg. C), Southern Hemisphere (0.00 deg. C), and tropics (-0.35 deg. C) anomalies did not change much from January. Gifts, gadgets, weather stations, software and here!

74 Responses to “UAH Temperature Update for Feb. 2011: -0.02 deg. C”

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  1. markinaustin says:

    I am a bit surprised by this information…..I watch the appropriate AMSU channel (5) and it seems to have spent almost the entirety of the month of February well below average.

    • An Inquirer says:

      MarkinAustin, I do think that Dr. Spencer’s information is quite confusing relative to baselines and anomalies. In years gone by, we were warned that the daily information would not match the monthly UAH figure because the monthly figure was based on AQUA. Over a year ago, Dr. Spencer announced plans to replace Channel 5 information with AQUA, but I voiced concern then that historic data on the Discover website might not be consistent with current data. For quite a while now, the Channel 5 graph is the AQUA data. Yet, the monthly anomaly that can be calculated from the daily site still does not match the monthly figure released by Dr. Spencer. My suspicion is that the the historical average on the website is not the average that Dr. Spencer uses to calculate the anomaly. I do wish that he would verify this and/or tell us the reason for the discrpancy.

  2. juakola says:

    In AMSUtemps-page is a 10 year average, not 30 year.

  3. Sven says:

    I wonder why Dr. Spencer’s site gave January anomaly as -0.01 but the UAH anomalies page shows 0.0

  4. Ray says:

    I too had expected a lower figure based on the AQUA CH5/14000 feet figure, but the actual figure isn’t too far
    from the expected value.
    There is a roughly linear relationship between the AQUA CH5 figure and UAH and for February, based on the previous 8 years the formular is about 1.21x +0.844, where x = the CH5 anomaly.
    I made the cumulative figure for ch5 to 27/2 to be -0.134c,
    so in theory the actual UAH figure for February should have been -0.08c, but anything between about 0.0 and -1.6c could have been possible.

  5. Xela says:

    Sven, I have the same question.

    Dr Spencer, why are your site showing the anomaly -0,01 for january when the UAH anomaly page for january shows 0,00?

  6. Richard deSousa says:

    So what altitude (lower tropospheric temperature) are we seeing this phenomena?

  7. Sven says:

    Ray, I’m afraid your calculation is not correct. There is no simple correlation between AMSU channel 5 daily figures and final UAH, but I have found another interesting logic in the correlation. From Dr. Spencer’s earlier posts I’ve understood that AMSU daily figures come from an older satellite that has orbital lag. So, I wondered whether it would be possible to extrapolate the lag to have a better prediction value from the AMSU page. Just this weekend I made the comparison and I found an interesting pattern comparing the two. Until January 2010 the differences seemed to be quite random but since then a certain logic emerged. The difference seems to be “in waves”. The differences (AMSU Ch.5 daily minus UAH) since January 2010 till February 2011: -0.18 -0.16 -0.1 -0.09 -0.05 -0.03 0.02 0.01 -0.03 -0.09 -0.13 – 0.16 – 0.13 -0.11.
    Based on this logic and knowing that AMSU average for February 2011 was -0.13 or -0.14 depending on the last couple of days’ values that were not yet available, I have to say I did predict -0.02 or -0.03 already on Sunday! So, when the figure came out today, I was quite proud of myself 🙂 On the other hand, there is a chance, of course apossibility that the logic is just a coincidence and my “clairvoyance” was pure luck… I’ll keep monitoring.

  8. Sven says:

    So, my prediction for March is that UAH anomaly will be around 0.07 to 0.09 degrees higher than AMSU average. Let’s see whether I’ll be correct.

  9. Fred from Canuckistan says:

    Well that is a huge catastrophic increase in Global temperature over the last for 32 years.

    Oh wait, maybe not

  10. Harold Pierce Jr says:

    ATTN Roy

    When you post data put a “0” before months 1-9. This will cause the numbers that to line up properly. However, “-” preceeding an entry will result in a one column offset.

    Have you considered using a constant width Helvetica font?
    The present font has fine lines and serifs and is difficult to read for an old timer like me.

  11. NLB says:

    Dr. Spencer,
    Just a thought: El Ninos raise the temperature of the global atmosphere by exchanging heat from the ocean and air – do I have this right that this is at least one major effect?
    A warmer atmosphere will radiate greater heat to space – sending it outside the earth/atmosphere system (heat transfer).
    Therefore, the higher global temperature seen from an El Nino is actually a cooling phenomena – a way for the earth/atmosphere to reject heat?

  12. NLB says:

    Sorry — ocean TO the air — in above post.

  13. Harold Pierce Jr says:

    ATTN Roy

    This is off topic. Do you know the average mass of liquid water in clouds or where I can find the data?

    The water droplets of clouds contain CO2 but how much? It is not zero. The droplets of clouds are quite small (ca 10 microns) and would rapidly equilibrate with local CO2 in the air. If the droplets form rain, that CO2 in them is carried to ths surface.

    I live in Burnaby just east of Vancouver. The rainy season starts in Nov. The sky is grey overcast most of the time, and it can pour down rain for days on end.

    The annual rainfall at Van. Intl. airport is about 1,200 mmm but it much greater on the North shore and in the moutains. Some areas there receive several meters of rainfall.

    What I wnat to know is: How much CO2 is washed out per unit of rainfall? As I just mentioned, it is not zero.

  14. Real Temp says:

    Looks like it has bottomed out, the natural deniers will be all the more pleased with themselves. It’s a robust trend so is not easy to break. We know what they are thinking: C’mon El Nino!!! With the hundreds of scientists that have cried wolf over this issue, they have certainly put every scrap of their credibility on the line. When the trend eventually does change, there will be empirical evidence that there is no wolf, the natural deniers will have zero to negative credibility, and the mainstream media vultures will clean up the scraps.

    We will have the Asbestos ready for the head of the IPCC.

  15. HR says:

    Real Temp says:
    March 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM

    I wouldn’t get too excited or start talking about trends now. The La Nina may have bottomed but there is likely to be a rise back to the ‘Enso-neutral’ state. You can see that happening post the 1999 La Nina and the prevailing ‘ENSO neutral’ state from 2002-2007.

    I’d say one version of ‘it’s natural’ that I’ve read would require that if we are now in a new ‘La Nina’ dominant period that at the end of La Nina events we should see step downs in the global temp. We have to see where temp ends up at the end of this La Nina but so far those step downs aren’t yet apparent.

  16. Stephan says:

    Must be blind looks like more -0.13 to 0.18C during that month FEB when eyeballing with “average” are we sure its -0.02C?
    even this warmista site shows about -0.18C or less
    In fact NONE of the data compared day by day shows anything like -0.02

  17. Reader says:

    Dr Spencer, why are your site showing the anomaly -0,01 for january when the UAH anomaly page for january shows 0,00?

    He rounded in his blog post. The actual data must be truncated …

    See his post from January’s temperature:

    2011 1 -0.009 …

  18. wayne says:

    Dr. Spencer could just use the “pre” tag around any columnar data which by default uses the fixed space Courier so everything lines up properly and is much easier to read the numbers to boot. OTOH, that is a bit picky. Harold, you can just highlight and copy then paste to a common text editor such as Notepad and there it easy to read.

    I know what you mean, my eyesight is not what it used to be either. ?

  19. 2008…2…-0.164..+0.048…-0.377….-0.520….verso 5.3
    2011…2…-0.018..-0.041….0.004….-0.350….verso 5.3

    2010 01 +0.635
    2010 02 +0.759
    2010 03 +0.721
    2010 04 +0.633
    2010 05 +0.706….Nio 3.4…<0,0
    2010 06 +0.485….Nio 3.4…<-0,5
    2010 07 +0.370
    2010 08 +0.321
    2010 09 +0.237
    2010 10 +0.106
    2010 11 -0.117
    2010 12 -0.222
    2011 01 -0.372
    2011 02 -0.350

    Delta (2010 05 – 2011 02) = + 1,056C

    The presumed change in 150 years that occurred in a few months.

  20. Harold Pierce Jr says:

    I like Helvetica. You all should check out:

    This is _the_ one stop, shop-until-you-drop store for global warming and climate change info store. By far it is the most comprehensive and well-designed site in climate blogosphere and has got it all. Indeed it is a work of art.

    If I were a super rich dude, I would send copies to the members of the Congress and of the Parliment of Oz and to Lisa J. Her copy would have long “CC” list of names like editors of influential rags and mags.

    I going to send copies to Premier S. Harper and will print the cover letter on hemp paper I found in the SUF student bookstore. This paper is made from
    unbleached virgin hemp and a real smooth hand.

  21. The temperatures are doing pretty much what I thought they would do,when I first stated my thoughts ,back in Aug. of year 2010.

    Going forward, temperatures will be near to slightly below normal, for the first half of this year. What happens the second half of the year, will be largely dependent on solar/volcanic activity.

    The global warming theory is dead, and it has been for quite sometime, due to the fact, as I have said a zillion times before, that the models could never predict the atmospheric circulation correctly, and never will, because the data they have to work with, is not accurate, and not comprehensive enough.


    +AO atm. circ. mostly. -AO atm. circ. mostly.

    Less extremes in weather. More extremes in weather.

    El Nino, drought in Australia. La Nina,floods in Australia.

    Lower Trop. hot spot in tropics. No lower trop. hot spot.

    Greater water content in atm. Less water content in atm.

    Cooler stratosphere. No cooling of stratosphere.

    Temp. trend straight up. Temp. trend up and down.

    As one can see they have everything WRONG, and therefore have no leg to stand on.

    Our company on the other hand, predicted rightly, that if solar acitivty were to remain low, with high latitude volcanic activity , the realities I showed above, would take place.

    Our company has just begun to push our thoughts to the public, and will continue to do so.

    As I have said many times before, this will be the decade of global cooling, and the decade, the man made global warming theory dies.

  22. Ray says:


    Firstly, I apologise, the formula I posted should have been 1.21x +0.0844, which makes quite a difference!

    Does that change your assertion that there is no simple correlation between the two figures? Looking at the figures plotted on a scattergraph, I remain convinced that there is an approximate linear relationship between the figures.

    After all, you go on to say that you forecasted the February UAH figure based on a similar formula (effectively 1.0x +0.11), so the two approaches are not so far apart.

    I only did the work to find the relationship because others (e.g. Joe Bastardi), appeared to be assuming that the AMSU ch5 figure could be used to predict the UAH figure without adjustment, i.e. effectively using the formula, 1.0x +0, which was clearly wrong, and lead in part to J.B. underestimating the January UAH figure.

    Regarding your sequence of differences between the figures from January 2010 to February 2011, could the “waves” not be a seasonal effect? I am working on the basis that the relationship is different for each month and am using a formula based on the past monthly figures, rather than the annual figures, although I have to admit I have no basis for doing that, and the formula for January is very similar to that for February, i.e 1.14x + 0.11, which is also even
    closer to your formula.

    When I get the time, I will calculate a formula based on annual figures and individual monthly figures to see if there is any significant difference.

    On the subject of whether the February figure looks too high, the question should be resolved when the other anomaly figures are published. Last month, the UAH, RSS, NCDC/NOAA were all very similar, after adjustment to the same time period. I haven’t checked whether the RSS figure has yet been published, but it should be soon.

  23. Ray says:


    Dr Spencer, why are your site showing the anomaly -0,01 for january when the UAH anomaly page for january shows 0,00?

    He rounded in his blog post. The actual data must be truncated

    See his post from Januarys temperature:

    2011 1 -0.009 ”

    This doesn’t seem to be logical. Why round up the blog post when the figure is to three places?
    It would imply that the data is actually to three decimal places, but in the data file is truncated.
    Whereas the data posted in the blog is rounded up.
    Surely not very satisfactory.
    Shouldn’t the data file have data to three placed if it exists?

  24. Ray says:

    “Going forward, temperatures will be near to slightly below normal, for the first half of this year. What happens the second half of the year, will be largely dependent on solar/volcanic activity.”
    Remember, as far as UAH is concerned, “normal” is 1981-2010,
    not pre-industrial times. There is still scope for some AGW, but not as much as the climate change extremists would say. I speak as a sceptic. There does seem to be an underlying warming trend of about 0.8c per century (cause unknown – evidently not entirely CO2). We have just been through an approx. 30 year period of above average warming, which helped to “prove” the AGW case. I believe we are about to go through an approx. 30 year period of below average warming, which will confuse the AGW proponents. After that, another 30 years above average. There will be short-term falls in global temperature, but the overall trend seems to be up.

  25. Xela says:

    Yes, january is -0.009 in the blogpost so why haven’t the blogpost for february also 3 decimals. But of course – I suppose the reason is it to look cooler than it is!

    Good question Ray – Shouldnt the data file have data to three placed if it exists?

  26. Ray, but we do know why the temperature rose last century, although it was only .6c ,very ,very small, compared to past temperature changes.

    I believe in the phase in theory, with solar activity setting the tables, as far as how much, and in what direction, the items that cause climate to change might phase into, which in turn will determine temperature trend.

    Last century we had record high solar activity,limited volcanic activity, soi oscillation mostly negative, ao/nao mostly positive , and PDO/AMO mostly in a warm phase, which can all account for the overall temperature rise.

    In contrast this decade will more then likely, continue to see low solar activity, more volcanic activity, soi oscillation being more positive, ao/nao circulations being more negative, and PDO/AMO being mostly in a cold phase. The result will be colder temperatures.

    How cold, will depend on ,what degree of magnitude, the items I mentioned, that control the climate , phase into their cold mode, and the length of time, they stay in that mode. Lag times ,have to be taken into account. These items started phasing into their cold mode, only during the past few years, and some like the AMO are still in their warm mode.

    Right now ,from the best solar scientist that I follow, they are expecting the sun to remain in a Dalton Minimum type period ,which should last to 2035 or so. If correct that will mean colder temperatures overall, up to at least 2035.

  27. One last point ,the items that I mentioned have all been phasing from a cold mode to warm mode,overall, starting around 1700 AD or so. It was not until late 2005, when the trends, started to reverse.

    I am predicting temperatures by the end of this decade to be 2F to 3F colder, then they are now, if I had to guess.

    One assumption,and that is solar activity remains low, by low, I mean an average solar flux reading of between 70 and 100.

  28. Reader says:

    Xela says:
    March 3, 2011 at 11:50 AM

    … I suppose the reason is it to look cooler than it is!

    If that is the case, surely it’s a greater error for the “offical” data to list 0.00 (ie 0.009 warmer) than it is for Roy to list -0.01 (ie. 0.001 cooler).

    Do you really think there is a conspiracy over a difference of 0.001 ?

  29. Ray says:

    “Do you really think there is a conspiracy over a difference of 0.001 ?”
    Personally, I don’t suspect a conspiracy, but there is apparent lack of consistency, which causes confusion, and which could easily be avoided by simply quoting the same figures, to the same number of decimal places, in both sources. Such lack of consistency does open the door to conspiracy theories.

  30. simple says:

    Very interesting and woorying to see the temperature in Feb 2011 SO HIGH!!!! considering strong La Nina and no sun activity warming it up (sun activtiy is lagged by 1-2years.

    Not many years outside of 1998-2011 get above that 0 anomally and that is because the mean is shifting up as the temperature rises, however if the eman had be kept static at say 1960-1991 (unfortunealty not available for stattellite data so would haave to correct for any biases), you’ll find 2011 Feb is still well above the mean and this is despite, very low sun activity and a very strong La Nina, so if everything was natural it should be well well below the mean.

    Things are heating up, it isn’t cloud variations, it isn’t the sun, it isn’t the PDO (your work on this Dr. Spencer has been very well critiqued here, it isn’t ENSO, so what is it, well it must be GHG change, which has occurred.

    DO agree with you Dr. Spencer that the climate is chaotic and it appears to me that the system changes phase in 1998 and again in 2010, as you know phase changes to a persisitent forcing once they start occur more and more frequently by a factor of 2.6ish, so maybe 2012 could become ironic as the year it is realised that the climate has shifted to a much warmer regime in order to close the potential difference created by the GHG imbalance as quickly as the system can, as entropy is always increasing and always at the fastest rate possible given the conditions.

  31. Simple, before I show you why you are wrong, I can turn around everything you just said, in your last post.

    If GHG have such a strong influence on temperature, why did temperatures only go up .6c last century , when we had record solar activity,mostly El Ninos,+AO/NAO oscillations for the most part, and warm PDO/AMO for the most part, and very limited volcanic activity. All natural forces working to create warming.

    Explain that , before you start your babble ,about Feb. 2011 temperature data. I predict you won’t be able to explain it. That ends that nonsense.

    History/Data shows you are wrong


    If one goes back in history/data,one will find the following, which shows GHG, are a zero factor when it comes to earth’s climatic system.

    1. History/data shows, first of all, that CO2 follows the temp. does not leadt.

    2. History/data shows, that the temperature rise last century was not some one time event, that had never took place prior to last century.

    3. History /data shows, the temp. rise of .6c last century was small, compared to past temp. rises, way before man had any influence.

    4. History /data shows us that many periods ,let’s take last 10,000 years for a time reference ,were warmer then today.

    5. History /data shows, during the past, co2 concentrations at times were much higher then today, and earth had an Ice Age.

    6. Finally ,last century saw solar activity at a record high, and the time lag between temp. response and solar activity is at least 4 years ,if not longer, because it is tied to the magnetic cycle, not the sunspot cycle.

    So Simple I am very ,very confident in my position ,and this century will very likley put a rest to people like yourself ,with your clueless opinions, on what makes earth’s climatic system work.

    I use clueless, because ,that is the correct word, given all the evidence we have.

  32. simple says:

    1. This is well known and that in general CO2 amplifies warming and cooling oscillations. CO2 has driven event sin the past though and the PETM1 and PETM2 are such like events when CO2 released was ~700ppm from a base of 1000Pm so rose to 1700ppm and the world temperature followed with a 5C warming, this all took about 1000-10000years. The rate of CO2 release in terms of CO2 doubling equivalent was about 800x slower than at present.

    2. The earth’s temperature has indeed always fluctuated and always will, however the rate of rise of 0.6C in the 30years to be honest, or 0.2C a decade is ~30x faster than can be found previously, although do remember the 0.2C decade is global not regional and regional temperatures due to shifts in ocean currents and weather patterns can shift by 10C in decades.

    3. Yes very true, but it is a lot faster, we have a lot of warming to come and it is the rate of change that matters for adaptation of eco-systems.

    4. Yes the world has been a lot hotter than today and the continents have been at totally different positions, although not for the last 10,000years and the most recent evidence is suggestive we haven’t been this hot globally since the holocene thermal maximum, although it is more likely we haven’t been this hot since the last interglacial, which was due to the orbital biases during that time.

    5. Yes they have, although more recent evidence is that it wasn’t as high as first thought. The other thing forgotten is that when we had an ice ball earth CO2 levels did fall in the priory and the sun was waeker by a significant amount (faint sun paradox). However due to the large ice sheets covering the oceans the radiative input was low (so GHG effect will be weaker as if all the sun light is reflected none needs to be changed to infra-red) and land and ocean CO2 sinks were alot smaller. This leaves a situation were the CO2 can accumulate in the atmosphere from volcanic activity, slowly overtime, but to overcome the weaker the sun, the large reflective factor and the large temerpature rise needed to end the snowball earth it took a large gjhg concentration to overcome, but luckily the GHG does work otherwise the earth would still be an ice-ball.

    6. The last peak was 1950-60 of solar activity, most people take 2 years as the lag from heat input to temperature representation on the earth, and this is in keeping with the oscillation in the temperature record and sun spot series, but it is likely that 2years is only about 60-80% and the last bit is 4year lagged. All that side, the sun has had declining activity since 1980’s yet this is the time period when the earth has heated most.

    So far there is no evidence that the PDO, AO, NAO warm or heat the planet as a whole or though they clearly do have signifcant regional effects and cn lead to changes in previaling weather patterns as they shift regimes. The ENSO system does warm or cool the planet on an acute (6month lag) basis and by about 0.2 full swing, however there no evidence of an long term effect this past 0.02C, according to Lean 2009, although the May 2010 paper did at first suggest that the ENSO was causing 90% of the warming in the last 30 years, however unfortuneately they had detrended the data, so what they had actually found was that the ENSO dominates 90% of the acute natural variation seen and the sunspots thing about 10%. May did publish a full acceptance of the original error but surprisingly that never got reported in the blogs.

    Must agree also that I am fairly clueless amount the vast majority complexicities of the climatic systems, but then whi isn’t, however the world is warming due to a large influx of GHG due to the result of man’s activities, it is going to be a roller coaster ride of chaos as climate systems change and new ones emerge(arctic di-pole, el nino modiko) to influence the global weather patterns.

    If you want a more comprehensive explanations to all 6 points you make.

  33. Kris says:

    Thanks, simple, for posting a link to a very thorough rebuttal of Spencer’s “simple model”. Overfitting is a known pitfall in modelling, and when someone as Roy (who hasn’t much experience with modelling) moves into that area it’s likely he will fall for it where a more experienced person might see the errors.

  34. Again past history /data ,says otherwise. They show and tell me, very,very clearly, that the items I have mentioned do control the climate, and that co2 does not.

    Time will tell.

  35. Simple your arguemnts are a bunch of BS! I am just going to point out things, here and there because I am short on time, and frankly I will never change your mind ,and you will never change my mind.

    The rate of rise of .2c in the last 30 years is small compared to the rate of rise when the Youga Dryas period ended,as an example.

    The .2c rise per decade for the past 30 years ,can easily be shown to be linked to the pdo going from it’s cold phase ,to it’s warm phase, which took place in 1978. Along with very high solar activity, and many more El Ninos then La Ninas during those 30 years.

    You are WRONG on the lag times, between temp. and solar activity, It is at least 4 years, or more.

    You are wrong, when you say today the earth is warmer today then it was for the most part during the past 10,000 years. The reality is for the most part, the past 10,000 years have been warmer then today. Refer to Dr. Easterbrrok and the ICE CORE DATA.

    Also the Eemain Interglacial , was much warmer then today’s temperature.

    Another bogus statement . Solar activity migh have been declining since the 198o’s but from record highs. Solar activity from 1980 to 2005 was as high as any period in the past 8000 years! Solar activity did not become quiet until late 2005.

    Simple in closing ,you have not seen anything of what I have proposed, because we have not had a prolong solar minimum until recently,and the items that control the climate have never had a change to phase in properly, far as degree of magnitude and length of time ,when combined with a prolong solar minimum, to create a temp .delcine. That however will chage this decade and the result will be by the end of this decade temperatures wil be 2to 3 f colder then now.

    In closing you are clueless,that is for certain.

  36. I wish I had more time, but you will learn the hard way ,but you will go down kicking and screaming ,as your co2 man made global warming theory meets it’s end, this decade.

  37. Ray says:

    For what it’s worth, the RSS anomaly for February is 0.51c down from 0.084c in January. Adjusted to the same base period as HadCRUT3, that is equivalent to 0.231c for January and 0.198c for February.
    On the other hand, the adjusted UAH figures are 0.253c for January and 0.235c for February.
    Otherwise, the adjusted RSS figure fell by 0.033c and the UAH figure fell 0.018c
    On the face of it therefore, RSS has fallen slightly faster than UAH in February.

  38. simple says:

    Did post about PDO, sunspots etc but it has gone.

    However the main question I had because my simple understanding of the global system can’t work out why when the PDO was positive during the LIA the earth was cooling, yet when it was positive recently the earth is warming?

  39. simple says:

    The post is back again now so the last comment can be ignored.

  40. harrywr2 says:


    ‘when the PDO was positive during the LIA the earth was cooling’

    An acoustics engineer with no knowledge of solar dynamics did some work treating ‘solar irradiance’ as sound and came up with seven separate sine waves of different frequency.

    Sometimes when they have a canceling effect, sometimes they have an amplifying effect.

    Solar irradiance is only one of the cyclical things earths climate is effected. The same is true of PDO.

    Those outside of the ‘it all must be CO2’ branch of climate science the number of different cycles affecting climate is considered unknown.

    The knowns are PDO, AMO and ENSO, but without a good historical record of ocean heat content we can’t be sure those are the only natural cycles. Those are the cycles that are short enough that we can see a defined pattern.

  41. Martin says:

    I must dispute the value of such cycle plotting with no exact historical data to back it up. Why? Sun cycles arent regular enough to be plotted like that. Unless you explain a little bit more, I wont accept that. Id calcule those cycles back to eg 0 AD, but again, we cannot plot these cycles to sine wave and proxy data about past solar activity cannot be taken into iccount with 100% reliability.

  42. Martin says:

    Sure, Sun is the engine of Earths climate and weather, but that isnt the only factor, so we cant make judgements about future based on past records, which are indeed just an estimation. We shall see better in not so distant future. Ill try to explore your theory more in-depth. Keep going.

  43. Adam says:

    Maybe you know who Severn Suzuki is. Her speech is famous from 1992 UN Conference….
    I’ve found a remix of her speech, for fun :DD (its actually good)

  44. Beware of past data Simple gives because it is more often then not ,not accurate.

    If one goes back to my post about past history /data and the points I made, those are all accurate,yet Simple, tried to show otherwise. Spin ,spin,spin.


    in order to prove how much influence the sun has on the climate, we need a prolong solar minimum. Up to last month we were doing fine, but if solar activity on the sun stays at this current level, it will be to high , and any solar minimum effects on the climate, will not be able to take place.

    We need a solar flux of 90 or less (in my opinion), in order to evaluate what effect a quiet sun has on the climate. Today’s solar flux reading is 143, way,way to high.

    Yet, that reading would be on the low side for the period 1980-2005. That is how active the sun was then.

    People don’t understand what a PROLONG SOLAR MINIMUM IS ,never mind the ways in which it does effect earth’s climate. They are for the most part in the dark, and you can tell by reading many post, from various people about solar activity and climate. They did not do, their homework, to put it bluntly.

    Unless,activity on the sun quiets down again, the prolong solar minimum ‘s influences on climate,(which are many) which I am quite sure I am correct on, will not be able to be proven,because the sun will be to active, going forward.

    But one can easily see many of the items I mentioned up to last month (for the past 2 years) were all coming to be, with earth’s climatic system, due to low solar activity. I just hope the sun can return to that state.

    I think it will ,so if this activity just last a few months to a year, I don’t think it will be enough to derail the prolong solar minimum effects,(just delay things somewaht) but we will have to see how this plays out.

    It is imperative that solar values stay near typical solar minimum values, in order to see what effect a prolong solar minimum has on the climate , for a very long period of time ,although things have been starting to show up in earth’s climatic system, since this solar minimum started in late 2005. I just hope his minimum is not ending.

  46. Tall bloke, could you elaborate?

    • tallbloke says:

      Salvatore, I have replied at length, but the comment is still in moderation. Probably because it had four links in it. Just visit my blog for the lowdown.

  47. What is your blog? Thanks.

  48. Tallbloke, I went to your blog. Excellent. I hope you post on this board, more often, and give us your insights. I can’t find however, your thoughts about this recent solar activity, and when you think it may end. I will be waiting for your commentary. Perhaps, it will be appearing soon, on this board.

    What I say ,is in order to appreciate the effects the sun has on earth’c climatic system, we need a prolong solar minimum, by that I mean solar values for years at or near typical solar minimums. Once that is established, effects start to come, such as the AO being more negative, until recently, with atmospheric blocking patterns,as an example.

    More volcanic activity. Greater propensity for more La Ninas, cold PDO/AMO etc etc. All of which ,serve to cool the earth.

    I hope you are correct ,and the sun does return to how it was from Sep. 2005- Feb.10,2011 , so we can find out just how much influence the sun has on earth’s climatic system.

    I rather be WRONG, then not know, and if the sun does not return to a quiet state ,it is going to be very hard to know ,one way or the other.

    I say solar flux much above 100 on a constant basis, is to active to get the desired possible effects ,that a prolong solar minimum might thrust upon earth’s climatic system.

    TALL BLOKE ,do you agree with that statement? Thanks.

  49. tallbloke says:

    Hi Salvatore,
    what I found was that there seems to be an average value for the monthly sunspot number at around 40SSN. Not only is this the long term average over the 350 years of the sunspot record, but it is also the approximate value at which the world ocean neither gains nor loses energy.

    The sunspot average over the second half of the C20th was much higher, nearly double that value, and a lot of extra heat has been stored into the oceans. There have been el ninos at or soon after the last five solar minimums. I believe this indicates that energy comes back out of the ocean when the sun is quiet. So the air temperature and sea surface temperature will stay quite warm for some time yet, but the ocean heat content will diminish as it loses energy heating up the atmosphere.

    You can see a similar situation with the drop in solar activity at the end of the C19th. Two big el ninos 10 years apart timed with the solar minima, and a gradual fall of average sea surface temperature for 20 years until the positive phase of the PDO picked it up again. Now we are in the same situation of a decline in solar activity which will continue for some time if our projection is right, plus a PDO in negative phase for the next 20-25 years.

    Time will tell

  50. That is good info., and what you are rightly saying,is all these things take time to play out. That is what many don’t understand. They think low sunspot activity ,instant climate reaction, but it is not like that at all, the lag times are very substancial , for most happenings. I think the shortest lag times, between solar activity and a climatic response, is the atmospheric circulation, maybe volcanic activity being next.

    As far as the oceans ,the lag times as you rightly point out can be very substancial.

    I really want to stay in touch with you.

    A great site is the Layman sunspot site, run by Geoff Sharp. Do yo know of that one. He gives his thoughts which are very good.

    I believe the general overall decline in solar activity is alive and well, but like everything in climate ,all items associated with it, do not go straight up or straight down and sometimes the counter runs to the general trend, can be quite substancial. That in part, is why it is so hard to know what is happening. Much time ,as you mentiioned is needed before more dEfinitive conclusions, can be ascertained.

    So I guess you feel this is a solar blip, in an otherwise quiet prolong period. The sunspot number of 40 seems reasonable ,since that would equate to a solar flux reading in the 100 area, which is the areas I think needs not to be exceeded over the long run, before low solar activity has a significant impact on earth’s climatic system.

    We were seeing pretty good signs of it, of late ,it will be interesting going forward.

  51. I understand the PDO as residue of ENSO conditions.

    Larger amount of La Nina results in a negative PDO.
    Higher amount of El Nio resulted in a positive PDO.

    The central point is the low cloud

  52. tallbloke says:

    Salvatore, feel free to call by at the talkshop whenever you like.

    Fernando, yes, and if Svensmark is right, the cloud albedo is solar related too. I also found another correlation which may be important to cloud levels: the specific humidity near the tropopause, where most of the outgoing longwave radiation to space is located, matches the changes in solar activity levels since 1956, except for the ’98 el nino, which had an effect lasting several years. See the ‘back radiation, oceans, and energy exchange’ post on my blog for the NCEP and NOAA graphs with my overlays of solar activity.

  53. Ray says:

    I make the cumulative anomaly for AQUA CH5 at March 6th to be -0.193c, with the 5th and 6th both in excess of -0.25c.
    I haven’t worked out the equation for March yet, but this should be equivalent a UAH figure of something like -0.1c.
    A long way to go however.

  54. An Inquirer says:

    Time is a precious commodity, and you may feel it is unfair that I do not go into detail. But I want to briefly comment that your references to Skeptical Science are not convincing. that website has repeatedly shown that they do not understand the issues at hand or they willfully misinterpret the issues to advance their agenda. After dozens of failures on their part to present reliable analysis, they have poisoned their own well.

    In essence, your comments are scientifically wrong. For the sake of time, I will go into repitition and detail.

    Yet, one comment on the sun’s influence. There are a variety of ways that the sun affects climate and weather. Most likely we do not have a comprehensive understanding of each avenue, and undoubtedly, we do cannot be sure of any calculation of the interaction of all the avenues.

  55. An Inquirer says:

    Time is a precious commodity, and you may feel it is unfair that I do not go into detail. But I Skeptical Science is not a reliable source of analysis. That website has repeatedly shown that either they do not understand the issues at hand or they willfully misinterpret the issues to advance their agenda. After dozens of failures on their part to present reliable analysis, they have poisoned their own well.

    Overfitting is a notorious problem with the GCMs on which the IPCC relies. With numerous opportunities for convenient — even arbitrary — choices on values for aerosols, they get great fits. Their fits would fall apart otherwise.

  56. Inquirer ,right on. These people choose to ignore past history/data.

    I am quite positive ,if solar values hover near typical solar minimum values ,that the impact on earth’s climatic sytem over time, will be significant. We have already seen some of this, during the past few years.

  57. Sven says:

    Now that’s strange. Just like for January the anomaly on this website was -0.01 but on UAH site 0.0, the same happened for February – here it’s -0.02 but UAH, where it has just appeared, has -0.01?!

    Dr. Spencer, why’s that?

  58. Martin says:

    Sven, even if its a conspiracy, such a small difference as 0,01C is just riddiculous. Global average temperature is just an informative number, so the observed trend is much more important than the number itself…
    Just for fun: Im trying to forecast the global temperature for this spring(autumn at the SH)(march to may). I do not use any specific algorythm, because I dont know the exact effect of things such as ENSO, PDO, Sun activity, GHG concentrations, the exact global albedo, AMO, NAO, AO…,although someone may disagree with me about existence of the GHGs effect. Do not take me too seriously, its fully empirical.
    So here it is:
    March -0,2
    April +0,1
    May +0,2
    Note that these numbers are just a raw estimation. If the real GM temperature is 0,05 higher or lower, I will be extremely pleased with myself 😀
    So these are my estimates of annomaly of global mean temperature according to UAH.
    In general- none of those months will be very different from 1980-2010 average.

  59. Martin says:

    correction: not GHG effect on temperature, but whether they are a factor in climate change.

  60. Sven says:

    Martin, what conspiracy are you talking about?!

  61. Sven says:

    I’m just asking out of curiosity as I’ve followed all the main temperatures for some years already and Dr. Spencer’s site has always given exactly the same figures as appear on the UAH site a bit later. Except the last two months.

  62. Martin says:

    No conspiracy of course. Im just joking. And I hadnt known about that difference until you have told me. I discovered Roy Spencers blog only recently.

  63. Ray says:

    According to the latest figures, the cumulative AQUA CH5 anomaly to March 8th was -0.239c, and the individual figure for March 8th was -0.353c.
    Temperatures at that level seem to be falling rather than rising as is usual at this time of year.
    tallbloke, Solar activity actually seems to be on the increase at the moment!

  64. Martin, as you know I said quiet sun with a spurt of activity sets the stage for increase geological activity. Sun became active around Feb.12 ,result since then is an increase in geological activity.

    I predict this spurt will be an exception to future solar activity this decade ,rather then the rule. If correct atm. circulation will return to a more -AO pattern.

  65. Martin says:

    Your theory, Salvatore, is being tested with fatal consequences, but it is doing well, lets see waht would happen next time. The biggest earthquakes in 20th occured in 57,60,64 and 65,when solar activity was high, maybe we will face even more of them in a matter short time, lets hope they will avoid such a densely populated areas.

  66. Go to climaterealist web-site. They did a study showing 80.6% of the largest earthquakes/most volcanic activity correlates with low solar activity.

    It is a good read, and confirms my thoughts. They went back to 1650 ad.

  67. janama says:

    Dr Spencer – I wish to inform you that the ABC Online website “Unleashed” is slandering you via an article published by a Barry Bickmore, Associate Professor of Geological Sciences at Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, USA.

    I think you deserve the right of reply either directly or via your solicitors.

  68. Dan Pangburn says:


    The contribution of added atmospheric carbon dioxide is between small and insignificant. The time-integral of sunspot numbers (a proxy which correlates with the average altitude and thus average temperature of clouds) and effective sea surface temperature are the main contributors.

    A simple equation, with inputs of accepted measurements from government agencies, calculates the average global temperatures since 1895 with 88.4% accuracy (87.9% if CO2 is assumed to have no influence). See the equation, links to the source data, an eye-opening graph of the results and how they are derived in the pdfs at (see especially the pdfs made public on 4/10/10, and 3/10/11).

    The future average global temperature trend that this equation calculates is down.

    This is corroborated by the growing separation between the rising CO2 and not-rising agt. From 2001 through Dec, 2010 the atmospheric CO2 increased by 21.8% of the total increase from 1800 to 2001 while the average global temperature has not increased significantly and the average of the five reporting agencies has been declining steeply since the peak of the last El Nino in about March 2010. The 21.8% CO2 increase is the significant measurement, not the comparatively brief time period. As the atmospheric CO2 continues to rise in the 21st century while the agt does not, the calculated influence of CO2 will decline.

  69. janama says:

    My comment is still awaiting moderation.

    don’t put up a website if you aren’t prepared look after it.

    I tried – but to no avail.

  70. Wily Wayne says:

    Very good site. Reading through it puts things in a nice perspective. From information I have seen, if taken honestly,
    is that the solar cycles, sunspots, solar minimums all do play a significant role in climate. Given that most folks agree that CO2 rise lags temperature rise, it may well be that the genesis of the current rise in CO2 may have occurred several hundred years ago. Anyway, the current Landscheidt minimum
    is following the Dalton minimum almost to the letter. If SC24 does stretch out as did the previous cycle, will this portend the onset of a Maunder like minimum instead? 2015 is shaping up to be a crucial year for climate theorists. Meanwhile, the next few years should continue to vouch the global cooling trend now underway.