UAH Global Temperature Update for October 2011: +0.11 deg. C

November 3rd, 2011 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

The global average lower tropospheric temperature anomaly for October, 2011 dropped , to +0.11 deg. C (click on the image for the full-size version):

The 3rd order polynomial fit to the data (courtesy of Excel) is for entertainment purposes only, and should not be construed as having any predictive value whatsoever.

Here are this year’s monthly stats:

2011 1 -0.010 -0.055 +0.036 -0.372
2011 2 -0.020 -0.042 +0.002 -0.348
2011 3 -0.101 -0.073 -0.128 -0.342
2011 4 +0.117 +0.195 +0.039 -0.229
2011 5 +0.133 +0.145 +0.121 -0.043
2011 6 +0.315 +0.379 +0.250 +0.233
2011 7 +0.374 +0.344 +0.404 +0.204
2011 8 +0.327 +0.321 +0.332 +0.155
2011 9 +0.289 +0.304 +0.274 +0.178
2011 10 +0.114 +0.169 +0.059 -0.056

The Northern Hemisphere, Southern Hemisphere, and tropics have all cooled substantially, consistent with the onset of another La Nina, with the tropics now back below the 1981-2010 average.

[Since AMSR-E failed in early October, there will be no more sea surface temperature updates from that instrument.]

For those tracking the daily AMSU 5 data at the Discover website, the temperature free-fall continues so I predict November will see another substantial drop in global temperatures (click for large version):

…taking a line from our IPCC brethren… While any single month’s drop in global temperatures cannot be blamed on climate change, it is still the kind of behavior we expect to see more often in a cooling world. 😉

67 Responses to “UAH Global Temperature Update for October 2011: +0.11 deg. C”

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  1. Niels A Nielsen says:

    It will be interesting to see to what extent the surface temperatures will follow.

  2. Luboš Motl says:

    It’s cold outside… And one may see that the globe agrees. October 2011 was the coldest October of the 21st century so far…

  3. good for us that think global cooling is coming, bad news for the global warmers.

    Now if the sun can only grow quieter again soon ,everything will be in place for substancial global cooling this decade. I want a solar flux reading of less then a 100, on a prolong basis.

  4. Scott says:

    Given the typical lag (~5 months) between ENSO and the measured global mean temperature, can we really blame the observed drop on La Nina? If so, why was the lag so much shorter this time? My thought is that we really won’t start seeing the impacts from this La Nina for another couple of months…


    • david says:

      Scott, that is correct. But the effects of the previous La Nina, officially lasting from July 2010 through April 2011, are thus still having an impact on the (global) atmosphere. Given the fact that ONI values (for Nino 3.4) haven’t been positive (0.0 at the most) since the onset of the previous la nina, and now the equatorial pacific is going into the next la nina (? question mark, because the next la nina is still not official; we will only know if it developed into a official la nina or not by February next year as we need 5 consecutive “seasons”/months of temp anomalies <0.5C) it is easy to understand that the atmosphere remained in "la nina mode" so to say over the entire year of 2010. See also NOAA's weekly ENSO update; the latest of 10/31 stating "Atmospheric circulation anomalies are consistent with La Niña."


      Hence, even though the previous la nina is over, but the next one may be knocking on our door steps, the (global) atmosphere has responded and continuous to respond to the negative sea surface temps at the equator: decreasing.

  5. Tom says:

    That daily temperature is already within the range of lowest temperatures for the year, and it’s only early November…

  6. Scott says:

    Daily temp. plot at Discover website does not display properly for me, at home or at work. The plot goes off the page at Dec 31st.

  7. mim says:

    why did anomalies surpass +0.3 a few months ago when enso was on the la nina end of neutral? why doesnt rss show the same very warm anomalies at that time? has anyone checked why there is such a difference? is there a link to the raw satellite data and source code to check?

  8. Gras Albert says:

    More interesting to me are the current temperatures at 400mb (25kft) and 250mb (36kfr) both of which are not only recording record (since 2002) low values but also multiple weeks earlier in the year compared to previous lows!

    What is causing the troposphere to cool both faster AND earlier than in recent times?

    Dr Spencer

    How do these absolute values compare with the period 1979-2001?, are we looking at satellite instrumental period record lows?

  9. D.W. MacKenzie says:

    From what I understand.

    1. La-Ninas usually last 9-12 months

    2. This one has just started

    3. This one is weak so far, and predicted to strengthen in 2012

    4. La Ninas have a lagged effect on global temps.

    Given 1-4 what how far will global temps fall over the next year? Or, more importantly, how much difference is there between IPCC (or any other) predictions of global temps and actual temps? At what point would the discrepency between actual and particular sets of predicted temps change professional and public opinion?

  10. SBVOR says:

    Dr. Spencer,

    Has the AMO been the primary driver of climate change over the last century?

    The data seem to support that theory:

  11. FergalR says:

    For: Scott says:
    November 3, 2011 at 10:53 AM

    If you’re running Windows, try holding down CTRL and pressing ‘+’ and ‘-‘ until the plot is the same size as the scale.

  12. That was a huge one month drop from 0.29 to 0.11! Keeping in mind that the August number was 0.33 and the September number was 0.29, it would be reasonable to make that the assumption that the value on October 1 was in the neighborhood of 0.25. Then since the average for all of October was 0.11, I would further conclude that the anomaly on October 31 may have been -0.03. All indications are that November will see another huge drop. Not only is the November 1 value for 14,000 feet the lowest since 2002, but the relative value at 25,000 feet is possibly even lower.

    Werner Brozek (retired physics teacher)

  13. R Taylor says:

    Perhaps someone has mentioned this before, but if you average the north- and south-polar lower-troposphere temperatures since 1978, the decadal polar trend is 0.21 degrees-C. This is about twice the warming at lower latitudes, roughly consistent with paleo-temperatures interpreted for all the time when anthropogenic CO2 was negligible.
    The very fact that the tropical troposphere has warmed less than the polar troposphere makes CO2-induced warming implausible, and the 2:1 ratio of warming might add a little to this conclusion.

    • Jon says:

      Any global warming, natural or not, will give the same effect. Small temp changes in the tropics produce larger temp changes in the polar areas.

  14. Thanks Dr. Spencer. I have updated the UAH temperature graphs in my web pages.

  15. Ray says:


    I routinely estimate the daily and cumulative UAH figures, using the AQUA CH5 temperature.
    Normally this isn’t very accurate, but this month the final figure was 0.113c, so quite accurate.
    Dr Spencer will no doubt have the real figures, but I estimate that the UAH anomaly around October 1st was about 0.1c and by the 31st. it was around -0.07c.
    I am slightly surprised at the predictions of another large fall in November, including from Dr. Spencer, since I woudn’t have thought that there was much scope for further falls in November.
    The AQUA CH5 temperature fell by 0.86k in October, agains a “normal” fall of about 0.57k. This left the temperature on October 31st at 252.169k, compared to a “normal” figure of 252.436k. Normally, the AQUA CH5 temperature at November 30th is 252.188k and the temperature “normally” falls by about 0.248c in November. So the temperature at October 30th was already lower than it normally is at the end of November, and the temperature “normally” falls more slowly in November, so unless we are going to see some incredibly low temperatures, I think that the rate of fall will slow down from now on and I wouldn’t even be surprised at a small rise in November.
    I notice that the AQUA CH5 temperatures for November 1/2 already show a slight increase on October 31st.

  16. Thank you for your reply Ray. My claim was that October changed from 0.25 to -0.03, a difference of 0.28. You say: “The AQUA CH5 temperature fell by 0.86k in October, against a “normal” fall of about 0.57k.” So your difference of a drop of 0.29 was basically the same as mine. But I am very puzzled about your 0.1 C on October 1. Keeping in mind the September anomaly was 0.29, which was very little change from August, I just do not see a sudden drop to 0.1 on October 1 being realistic. Furthermore, you suggest it was -0.07 C on October 31. I have no problem there. So if that was the case, and if the drop was 0.29 in your opinion, then October 1 must have been 0.22, which is pretty close to my guess of 0.25. As for my prediction of a huge drop in November, keep in mind that you say it was -0.07 on October 31. Since the difference between -0.07 and 0.11 is 0.18, the value at the end of November would have to be 0.29 in order for November’s value to just remain the same as October’s. (This of course assumes a linear trend line.) An immediate switch to a 1998 El Nino would not be enough to make that rapid an increase. At the moment, we have a La Nina at -0.90 and no one is predicting a rapid turn around. And no heat is coming from above at 25,000 feet either.

  17. Dan Pangburn says:

    A verifiable equation with predictive value (accurate prediction of average global temperature anomalies for over 20 years…and counting) is presented in the pdf made public 9/24/11 at

    • Cristoph Schulz says:

      Nice formula Dan. You have a “predictive” formula
      for global temperature with sea surface temperature as a
      variable. That is like discovering a formula for the temperature in your bedroom based on the temperature in your bedroom closet. I am sure you could “predict” the temperature in your bedroom without even knowing what the furnace is set at! Incredible!

      • Dan Pangburn says:

        Look more closely Cris, ESST is not a variable in the 20+ year prediction. That would have been dumb. The value of ESST that was used in the prediction is that which was determined by best fit of the equation to data prior to 1990.

        Ignoring the oceans is pretty dumb too since they have an effective thermal capacitance of about 30 times everything else.

        The only variable in the prediction is the sunspot number which the equation makes use of in the time-integral of sunspot numbers (as a proxy for energy into the planet) which is properly reduced by SB radiation from the planet to get the net energy change (which is revealed by change to the average global temperature. Yup, it’s the first law of thermodynamics.

  18. MikeN says:

    By the way, RealClimate has admitted what was obvious all along. Climate models can be tuned to yield the sensitivity they want. It is in the middle of their post on the Keystone pipeline.

    This graph gives you an idea of what the Anthropocene climate looks like as a function of how much carbon we emit before giving up the fossil fuel habit, without even taking into account the possibility of carbon cycle feedbacks leading to a release of stored terrestrial carbon The graph is from the NRC report, and is based on simulations with the U. of Victoria climate/carbon model tuned to yield the mid-range IPCC climate sensitivity. Assuming a 50-50 chance that climate sensitivity is at or below this value, we thus have a 50-50 chance of holding warming below 2C if cumulative emissions are held to a trillion tonnes. Including deforestation, we have already emitted about half that, so our whole future allowance is another 500 gigatonnes.

  19. Ray says:

    I should point out that the figures I quoted are NOT official ones, but my own estimates using the “normal” relationship between AQUA CH5 and UAH during the months involved. Only Dr. Spencer will be able to advice actual UAH values for individual days. Moreover, it is not my intention to contradict what you say, but simply to put forward my own point of view.

    You must remember that the monthly figures are averages for the entire month and the figures vary considerably during the course of the month. While the September anomaly was 0.289c, the month started out with very high figures and (according to my calculations), reached an estimated UAH anomaly of about 0.42c around Sept. 9th, but temperatures fell rapidly during the latter part of the month, with estimated anomalies around 0.17c by the end of the month. So there wasn’t a sudden drop from the average September figure on October 1st. The figures at the start of October were the continuation of a downward trend which had started during late September.

    In fact, based on AQUA CH5, the estimated UAH anomaly rose from around 0.1c at the start of October, to about 0.2c by the middle of October, then fell again, reaching -0.07 by the end of the month. It is this pattern which makes up the overall average for October of 0.114c.

    Of course, I may be completely wrong about November, but I notice that the AQUA CH5 temperatures have risen for the first three days of the month, reaching 252.263k compared to the figure of 252.169k on October 31st. The figure of 252.263k is still about 0.075k above the average monthly November value, and if the temperature were to fall to the average value by the end of the month, I estimate that the final UAH figure for the month would be almost identical to that for October.

    The best way to look at this, is not to guess the values at any part of the month, but to calculate the AQUA CH5 anomaly on a daily basis, using the published figure and the daily average over the record, then estimate the UAH anomaly using the normal relationship between the figures. Unfortunately the average AQUA CH5 figures are not published in the data files, but they can be calculated approximately.

  20. I can’t believe that a grown up person can talk about the temperature in the whole atmosphere goes to 0,33, than down by 0,25… No living person on the planet knows what is the correct temperature in the troposphere by plus / minus 4C degrees – to save his live… Here they shamelessly talk about going up or down by less than a 1/4 degree… No Wander the Warmist are not ashamed to tell lies… ashamed from whom?

    Guys, temperature in the troposphere is same every hour of every month, year and millennia! Only warmth and coldness shift locations. There is different temperature on every few metres, for every few minutes – nobody is monitoring for every few minutes on every few metres = nobody knows what was the temperature correctly for any year or any month.

    There are different temperatures as there are grains of sand on the beach … they are as discussing if is 3 or 23 grains of sand more or less… shame shame… Reason the Warmist are prospering with lies… Would the commenter tell me: what was exactly the temperature 11,15AM on 4July 123m above his backyard? how about on the same date 15m above the sea, 234km NE of Fiji about 3PM? OR IS THAT PLACE ON ANOTHER GLOBE? Verdict: the prolong propaganda produced nutters in both camps.

    WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO START ASKING IPCC, TO TELL THE CORRECT TEMPERATURE ON THE 9,9999999999999999999999999999999% of the places they ARE NOT MONITORING????? It is ESSENTIAL TO MONITOR ON AT-LEST 1000 TRILLION PLACES IN THE TROPOSPHERE, FOR EVERY FEW MINUTES – to know roughly the temperature, with 1-2 degrees plus / minus inaccurately!!! the truth: Atmospheric temperature is not as human body – when is one degree warmer under the armpit = the whole body is warmer by that much. Stop buying bull from IPCC, or be part of the organized crime. Their best assistants. Al Gore loves people that buy Warmist crap without question asked…

  21. Thank you for your reply Ray. You are right that I oversimplified things. They used to have an “average” line. It would really help if it were still there. Right now, the trend is naturally down and we need to decide if it is going down faster or slower than average at any given point. As for the brief three day uptick, that was probably due to an active sun since several layers above had a similar uptick. A suddenly warmer ocean would not immediately reach 46,000 feet. As for the final value, the coldest November from 2002 was November 2007 at 0.06. At the end of the month, it will be interesting to compare the areas above and below the line for 2007 versus 2011. I did this for October and determined that the areas were close for October 2011 and 2008 so my guess was 0.13 which was close.

  22. BillC says:

    Dr Roy,

    You should constrain your polynomial to have zero slope at the outset, as the current setup implies a negative trend from the start which implies analysis of prior data. I know it’s just for fun…

  23. Ray says:

    I had stupidly forgotten that the actual daily UAH figures
    are published retrospectively on the vortex website in the following file:

    I believe that the fourth column from the right is the global anomaly x 1000.
    The figures for October have been updated, so you can check for yourself whether what I said in the above posts were correct.
    I have had a quick look at the actual figures versus my estimates and while the individual figures aren’t 100% identical, the general pattern was about right.

  24. Joe Lalonde says:

    Dr. Spencer,

    Would you believe an important area of science was missed?
    This is our main circulation driver.

  25. crandles says:

    GISStemp anomaly for Oct has shown up at 54, which seems quite warm given the UAH data. Well, that giss anomaly is higher than Oct 2007 and 2002 which the UAH data isn’t. But it isn’t by much and maybe the cold will reach surface levels in Nov more than in Oct.

  26. Ray says:

    Not only relative to UAH but also RSS, which showed an even greater global fall in October.
    It seems to be the GISS N.H. anomaly which is “out of step”, since the fall in the GISS S.H. anomaly is similar to UAH and RSS.

  27. Thank you Ray. So in other words, the anomaly was -0.098 which is close to your guess at -0.07. On a different post:
    “Bill Illis says:
    November 9, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    The UAH lower troposphere temperatures are currently at about -0.1C.
    So today, temperatures are below the average of 1979 to 2010 (the last 31 years). That is, without a big volcano dropping temperatures as has happened twice in this period.

  28. Ray says:

    Werner, thanks, it was that post which reminded me that the daily figures were eventually published. I noticed that he also said that he didn’t expect a large decline for the remainder of the year.
    I make the cumulative AQUA CH5 anomaly for the first 7 days to be about -0.176k, which is equivalent to a UAH anomaly of about +0.028c. That is much lower than the October average, but higher than the late October figures.
    If the AQUA CH5 temperatures continue to remain flat, that would point to only a small fall in the UAH anomaly.

  29. Ray, you say: “I make the cumulative AQUA CH5 anomaly for the first 7 days to be about -0.176k, which is equivalent to a UAH anomaly of about +0.028c.” I must confess you lost me here. You are obviously not dividing -0.176 by 7 since that would give -0.025. However I do believe -0.025 is a pretty good estimate of the average for the first 8 days if we take your -0.07 value for October 31 and add about 0.04 since it went up slightly since then to give about -0.025. So if it “stays there”, I would expect November to end up at about -0.025. However I should clarify that by the words “stays there”, I mean that from now on, it slopes downward at the average rate. However even if it goes straight across to the end of November with no downward slope, it should still be far enough below the 2007 mark 0.06 to be in negative territory.

  30. Ray says:

    I calculate the linear equation of the relationship between the monthly AQUA CH5 temp and UAH for each month, i.e. y = mx + b, using Excel, so the value of m and b are different for each month, so it isn’t just a question of dividing one number by another, i.e. you need the “b” figure, and the relationship for October and November are assumed to be different.
    I have compared the daily AQUA CH5 and UAH figures for November 2007 and it is true that the UAH anomalies were much closer to the AQUA CH5 anomalies that year than the average. As a result, the actual UAH anomaly for the month was about 0.1 degrees lower than the figure which would have been “predicted” from the equation. If that were to hold true this November, the current UAH anomaly would be about -0.07 degreees. So far this November, the AQUA CH5 anomalies have been much lower than previously experienced (as a result of the fall in October), and it may be that the linear equation for the relationship of AQUA CH5 and UAH does not hold true for such low AQUA CH5 temperatures, but in the case of 2006 and 2008, low AQUA CH5 anomalies underestimated the UAH anomalies, and that for 2004 was almost exactly correct, although those years were not as cold as this November so far.
    What this boils down to is that the equation is only a crude average and will only an approximate prediction. It may be that you are correct and that the actual UAH anomaly may be lower than I estimate, so we will have to await the actual figures.
    All I will add is that so far, I have been proved correct, in that November has not yet produced a “substantial drop” in absolute temperatures. However, I have a daily expectation that I will be proved wrong at some stage.

  31. david says:

    re: GISS. there are 2 months left for temp data this year. If we simply assume the next 2 months will show GSTA’s that are around the average of the last 10 years (not entirely unreasonable to assume, especially since the last 10 yrs have not gotten warmer; they were record warm, but that’s not the same as “warming”…). Anyway, then Nov would be 60 and december 53. The average GSTA for the entire year 2011 would then be 52; The 2nd lowest annual GSTA average since 2001. The assumed calculated-averages for Nov and Dec seem, in light of the ENSO developments, high. We need to look at 2007/2008 (previous la nina), to see a Sept-Oct temperature pattern that tracks reasonably well with what we’ve seen in 2011. Nov, Dec temps in 2007, 2008 were 47, 40 and 58, 47, respectively. So it appears that we can expect 2011 Nov, Dec GSTA’s to end up in the low 50s and mid 40s range. Say, for simplicity sake 55 and 45. 2011 average GSTA would then be 51.

    I know, this is all very simple and assuming a lot. but my point is that regardless of what the next two months will do temp wise, 2011 will end up as the 2nd coldest year over the last 10 years. To exemplify: Nov and Dec need to come out at 120 each (yes 120) to tie with 2010 and 2005 (warmest 2 years). That of course will never happen. (or be 90 to tie with 2007; etc)

  32. david says:

    Sorry, I meant the 3rd lowest annual average GSTA since 2001.

  33. An Inquirer says:

    I see that the Channel 5 daily temperature for 2011 has just gone above the 2008 level. Such a development doesn’t mean much since daily Channel 5 readings are contaminated by non-tropospheric temperatures. But it does mean that the plunging anomalies have ended.

  34. Ray says:

    An Inquirer,
    Also, at the 11th, the temperature was back to within a whisker of the average for this time of year.
    Still 19 days to go, however.

  35. crandles says:

    If NCDC say NH land was warmest Octoble on record while NH mid-troposphere October was coldest in last 10 years, then presumably you should expect these anomalies to disappear pretty rapidly? How rapid should it be? 2 or 3 days?, a week?, 2 weeks?

    So is it still surprisingly cold in mid troposphere despite some warming since the low point?

  36. Espen says:

    Looking at the UAH map here:

    and the GISS map here:

    – there are many similarities, but GISS seems to have larger areas of positive anomalies in the north of Canada and Siberia, and because of scarce measurements, these get “smeared” over a very large area in the 1200km-radius standard version.

  37. don penman says:

    Why is the daily Aqua ch5 on December when this only November? Is it only me that sees this.

  38. Ray says:

    don penman,

    That is because the December figures for previous years are not shown on the graph. The relative temps. for different years seem to be correct, but not the scale.
    I noticed this earlier in the year and pointed it out in a post but I don’t know in which topic.
    I thought that the graph had been corrected, but evidently not.
    Either it was never fixed or has reverted again to it’s previous state.

  39. don penman says:

    That makes sense then because there are no December plots.What happens when we get to December?

  40. Ray says:


    Presumably someone will fix the graph before then.
    On average, December temperatures are normally pretty flat in December but it would be useful to monitor them.
    The only other way is to download the data and produce your own graph.

  41. Ray says:

    Are you sure?
    Yes, there are dates up to the end of December, but the data aren’t there.
    As Don Penman pointed out, the current data point (for November 16th.), is aligned with the scale at some time after December 1st.
    There is only one peak in the December data when there should be two. That’s how it looks to us anyway.
    Can you can see the current data point aligned with Nov. 16th, and two peaks in the 2010 data?

    • Cristoph Schulz says:

      Yes, I am quite sure.

      It looks fine to me in Chrome, Firefox and I.E.
      You might try to update your java version. I don’t
      know if that is your issue, but the graph is a java

  42. don penman says:

    I am using java 6 update 28 java 7 is not yet available.The graph still looks wrong to me.

  43. don penman says:

    Correction java 6 update 29 which is the latest update I hope.

  44. david says:

    my Mac shows it the way Don reports it, whereas my PC shows it all correct. Maybe that’s the issue?

    Btw, notice that temperatures (Ch5) are decreasing again, as expected, since somewhere around mid-late October through mid November Ch5 shows mostly an increase, followed by a sharp decrease.

  45. david says:

    ps: if the decreasing trend continues, which is likely IMHO because of the developing -possible- La Nina, with ONI negative since August and it’s effect starting to show up in the global temperatures in ~November assuming a 3months lag time), it’s not hard to imagine that Nov ’11 will soon drop below Nov ’08 values and stay below for the remainder of the year.

  46. David L. Hagen says:

    Re: “The 3rd order polynomial fit to the data (courtesy of Excel) is for entertainment purposes only, and should not be construed as having any predictive value whatsoever.”

    Seriously, how can you justify negating the “null hypothesis” that the future trend will likely be similar to the previously observed trend, without further information?

  47. Christopher Game says:

    Dr Spencer is right to say that he does not intend to try to predict the future in fine detail when he doesn’t yet have a sufficiently accurate established physical law for the purpose. A “null hypothesis” based on a “trend” is not worth the electrons and photons that show it. Christopher Game

  48. Dan Pangburn says:

    Change to the level of atmospheric carbon dioxide has no significant effect on average global temperature.

    A simple equation based on the physical phenomena involved, with inputs of only sunspot number and ppmv CO2, calculates the average global temperatures (agt) since 1895 with 88.4% accuracy (an insignificantly lower 87.9% if CO2 is assumed to have no influence).

    The equation, links to the source data, an eye-opening graph of the results and how they are derived are in the pdfs at (see especially the pdfs made public on 4/10/10, 3/10/11 and 9/24/11).

    As shown in the 9/24/11 pdf, the equation accurately predicted the temperature trends for the last 20 years.

    The future average global temperature trend that this equation calculates is down. The huge effective thermal capacitance of the oceans (about 30 times everything else) will cause the decline to be only about 0.13°C per decade. The decline may be as much as 0.22°C per decade if the sun goes really quiet.

    This trend is corroborated by the growing separation between the rising CO2 and not-rising agt. From 2001 through September, 2011 the atmospheric CO2 increased by 23.7% of the total increase from 1800 to 2001 while the average global temperature has not increased. The 23.7% CO2 increase is the significant measurement, not the comparatively brief time period.

    Without human caused global warming there can be no human caused climate change.

  49. RW says:

    Christopher Game says:

    “Dr Spencer is right to say that he does not intend to try to predict the future in fine detail when he doesn’t yet have a sufficiently accurate established physical law for the purpose.”

    This is definitely one thing I’m in complete agreement with Roy on. I don’t think anyone has the foggiest idea which way the temperatures will go in future years or decades, and I’m extremely dubious of anyone who actually thinks they do.

    However, I do think that no where near the amount of warming predicted by the IPCC will occur in future years or decades.:)

  50. Ray says:

    I was sure that I had the latest version of Java, but just to make sure, I downloaded the latest version from the link on the discover site.
    It made no difference to the graph displayed on I.E., so I tried it in Google Chrome and it looks correct using that.
    My own view is that the graph should look correct in all browsers and it isn’t my fault if it doesn’t.

    You said that between mid-late October and mid November, AQUA CH5 shows mostly an increase, but actually from about October 12th to 31st, it shows a consistent decrease and only started rising from Nov. 1st until about the 14th, since when it has started to fall rapidly again. Only on the 18th was the temp. below the Oct. 31st figure, so I don’t think this yet constitutes a substantial fall in November.

  51. david says:


    My apologies, I was too generalizing and not very accurate with my time frame. I think one could make the argument for a late-october through early november “bump”, which sometimes shifts a little bit later. I also think it is fair to say that Nov ’11 Ch5 is catching up with Nov ’08 rapidly and will continue to do so, meaning become lower (Nov 18 data is -21.03 for ’11 and was -21.09 for ’08), which in light of the recent ENSO developments shouldn’t be all too surprising.

    Btw, personally I start to ponder the idea that La Nina and El Nino are two independent cycles instead of one ENSO cycle. Given the different cycle tops and bottoms over time of LN and EN, as well as that LN and EN not necessarily always follow up on each other there’s arguments for this idea. However, I am not sure if this theory has been tested and or given thought by the scientific community? Anybody knows?

  52. JohnD says:

    Nov. 2011 is shaping up to be an extraordinary month, at least on Discover Ch5, barring a sharpe turn around, it will be the coldest Nov. in the ten years of plotable data, and, I suspect, the coldest month (relative to the seasonally adjusted average)in more than three years.

    • david says:

      Yep, sure looks like it. 11/21 CH5 is now a a tiny bit below its ’08 value; La Nina isn’t done yet!

      Recently, I’ve been applying market-trend analyses to GISS data, for example the Moving Average Convergence-Divergence (MACD). It is one of the simplest and most effective momentum indicators. It turns two trend-following indicators, exponential moving averages, into a momentum oscillator by subtracting the longer moving average from the shorter moving average (12yr EMA – 26 yr EMA). As a result, the MACD follows trends and the trend’s momentum. And this is exactly what we are looking for: will global temperatures increase or decrease and will they continue to do so. Market analysts, stock brokers etc use this indicator, among others, to see if stock prices/markets will (likely) go up or down (in the future). Although stock prices/commodities may be psychologically driven, indicators such as the MACD are mathematically based, and 100% objective and can thus be applied to any data-set to look for trends.

      Unfortunately I can’t post the plot here, but what I found by calculating a MACD (12, 26, 9yr, 1yr) of seasonally corrected GISS data is that since the beginning of 2010 the MACD line has crossed below the signal line (9yr EMA of the MACD). In addition, the MACD line continues to decrease, and the signal line has also started to decrease. If GISS temps were a stock price, this would clearly indicate that the temperature trend is downwards (sell-signal). Note that the MACD is a lagging-indicator as it is based on 12, 26 and 9yr exponential moving averages.

      I haven’t seen other people use stock markets’ technical indicators on global temperatures. The counter argument that stock prices are driven by other aspects, such as human psychology, then global temperatures and therefore can not be used is not valid, since -as I pointed out before- indicators like the MACD are simple momentum indicators based on calculating the divergence/difference between (exponential) moving averages. The underlying driver of the change is as such therefore irrelevant.

      To make my point of the applicability of such indicators more convincing: The MACD line crossed over the signal line in 1978, indicating an uptrend at that point in time. The MACD has stayed above the signal line ever since, until 2010 that is. This clearly shows an increase in temperatures and is in-line with the observed increase temperatures. In 1946 on the other hand, MACD crossed under the signal line and remained under it most of the time (with some short term back and forth crossing) until 1976. This indicates decreasing temperatures, which is in line with the observations for that time frame.

      The MACD and signal line start at 1906 (26yr EMA of GISS data, which starts 1880) and 1915 (9yr EMA of MACD), respectively. Thus the MACD doesn’t provide any further signals before 1915. It does show crossover ~1915, also inline with the increase in temperatures between 1905-1910 to mid 1940s.

      Or in other terms; one doesn’t need fancy computer models to make all sorts of predictions… If anybody is interested I can send the plots etc.

  53. Ray says:

    david says:
    “Yep, sure looks like it. 11/21 CH5 is now a a tiny bit below its ‘08 value; La Nina isn’t done yet! ”

    Sorry, can’t use the reply option for some reason.
    The above may be true, but the AQUA CH5 has been fairly static for the last 3 days. Will it go up or down?
    Also, note that in 2008, the temp. rose rapidly from this point.
    Incidentally, I have just noticed the absence of figures in the text file from Nov. 27th in 2007. Has this changed? I am sure that there used to be figures.

  54. Ray says:

    After a lot of ups and downs, the AQUA CH5 temp. at the end of October ended up slighly higher than the end of October, so in theory UAH should only be slightly lower.
    I don’t know about anyone else, but the graph on the discover website seems to have sorted itself out for me now, with the scale and data correctly aligned, even using I.E.

  55. YFNWG says:

    Waiting with baited breath for November’s anomoly.

  56. richard verney says:


    Me too.

    I have been checking the site each day since Friday to see what happened in November.

  57. Also waiting…

    RSS MSU for November can be found here:


  58. Ray says:

    A more direct link to the RSS data:
    A much lower figure for November than I would have expected from the AQUA CH5 figures.
    Come on Dr. Spencer – put us out of our misery!
    YFNWG, by the way, I think it is “bated”, (from “abated”), rather than “baited”. (sorry for being so pedantic)

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