No Snow for Christmas? That’s OK…Snow is Racist Anyway

December 22nd, 2015 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

yellow-snow-warningAs reported yesterday, an enterprising fellow actually got college students to sign a petition to stopWhite Christmas” from being played on the radio because — since it ignores Christmases of other colors — it is obviously racially insensitive.

Frank Zappa was way ahead of his time on this. Zappa recognized that snow comes in different colors, and wrote the quirky song Dont Eat the Yellow Snow, which I used to listen to in college. Having eaten my share of snow while snowmobiling (before bottled water was invented), I am familiar with such snow color discrimination, as I practiced it regularly.

But this also begs a more general question: arent there other weather elements that have not checked their white privilege at the door?

Clouds, for example. As seen from space they are always white. Wassup wit dat? From the ground, clouds are usually white. At least the happy, cheerful ones are. Only the angry and foreboding clouds are dark-colored.

So, it seems that weather — and probably climate as well — has racial overtones that should be avoided in our weather forecasts and global warming discussions.

(And this is why I stopped writing satire years ago…because truth really has become stranger than fiction.)

185 Responses to “No Snow for Christmas? That’s OK…Snow is Racist Anyway”

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  1. Alan says:

    Don’t worry. Congress will soon pass laws making these things illegal…

  2. ossqss says:

    Please forgive me, but I could not resist! 🙂

  3. jimc says:

    Leftist are inherently miserable people (Google it). Finding a way to make you miserable makes them happy (for about 2 seconds).

    • David Appell says:

      Because whatever you find Googling must be the truth, eh Jim?

      • jimc says:

        Case made.

      • Russell Cook says:

        So, David Appell, are you prepared to relay the folly of Googling to Scott Harper of the Virginia Daily Pilot newspaper? You see, back in 2012, Harper wrote a piece about Dr S Fred Singer ( ) in which he said “Singer has been a paid consultant for ExxonMobil, … according to published reports”. When I emailed Harper to simply find out what published reports he was referring to, the first four words of his reply read as follows: “I googled Singers name ” Screencapture here for posterity of the entire reply×407.jpg

        I emailed back to say that the ‘slew of media coverage’ Harper mentioned in his reply to me only repeated material found in prior reports stemming from a singular accusation made by global warming alarmist book author Ross Gelbspan, and that no reporters ever questioned the veracity of Gelbspan’s accusation, and then I asked if he saw that as a story to dig deeper into and if he planned to do a Google search to find out what evidence Gelbspan relied on. I got zero response from Harper.

        • David Appell says:

          Russel: Fred Singer has been paid a lot (> $10^5, IIRC) to write the NIPCC reports, from the Heartland Institute.

          The Heartland Institute is, in part, funded by fossil fuel interests.

          1 + 1 = ?

          • mpainter says:

            Global warmers are funded, in part, by fossil fuel interests.


          • Ernest says:

            You really are an idiot for putting that out there. The Federal Government is heavily subsidized by Big Oil through taxes. In addition, Big Oil spends huge bucks lobbying Congress, which has been controlled by the Democrats a large majority of the time since the advent of Big Oil. Big Oil works interactively with various government agencies. That makes every government funded climate study suspect of being tainted by Big Oil using the definition of tainted your side seems to favor. In fact, using your definition they ARE tainted by connections to Big Oil. That means everything you have to say about climate is tainted by Big Oil interests.

            As it happens, Heartland would love to be heavily funded by “fossil fuel interests.” I have personally heard various leaders at Heartland Institute openly welcome donations from the Koch Brothers and other “fossil fuel interests.” To date, they have not received said funding. So shut up about “fossil fuel interest” and Big Oil, etc. You have zero credibility on the subject.

          • mpainter says:

            All the talk is about Big Oil, but the real source of political $ is Little Oil and these are are over 100 “independents”, as known in the Oil & Gas industry. Both parties get their share of the political boodle spent by Little Oil. Obama scored big with Little Oil when he nixed the Keystone Pipeline which was hated by Little Oil. Obama has suckered his devotees, who were none too bright to begin with.

          • Ernest says:

            @ mpainter – I agree with what you are saying. I’m just fed up with leftists crying “tainted data” and getting away with it. Yes, most donations have strings attached. Those attached to the Federal Government are the absolute worst as they are used to further a political agenda having nothing to do with a claimed Global Warming problem.

          • Russell Cook says:

            @David Appell – in this particular case, 1 + 1 = 0, unless your collective side can come up with evidence that would hold up in a courtroom evidentiary hearing which proves skeptic climate scientists were/are 1) lying, 2) know they are lying, 3) are instructed to lie by anyone having a connection with the fossil fuel industry, 4) are paid to lie, and 5) would stop lying if the funds were completely cut off and / or are outbidded by the One Percenters running Greenpeace, WWF, NRDC, etc — such that now Fred Singer et al. would be free to tell the truth. Until you guys come up with that proof, you have zip, zero, nada, zilch. Exactly what part of that abject failure do you not understand?

          • David Appell says:

            Ernest, the Heartland Institute has received a lot of funding from fossil fuel interests over the years. Just because this is now funneled though Foundations and estates doesn’t mean that funding has disappeared.


          • David Appell says:

            Russell Cook:

            If so-called “skeptics” weren’t ashamed of their funding, why would they try to hide it?


            And why did’t Roy Spencer divulge that he was paid $4,000 last year to testify in Minnesota in September?

            We know why — he knew it would look bad.

            And he was right.

            And he still can’t admit it here.

          • mpainter says:

            What is wrong with fossil fuels, pray tell. You are venting your twisted hates on the wrong blog, Dvid Appell. Long live fossil fuels.

          • TedM says:

            So what if Dr Spencer was paid to testify, it’s part of his job, and I wonder just what his expenses were.

          • Jim Dean says:

            Hi David, I would like to say I’m disappointed, but I can’t, this seems to be your M.O.

            Confirmation Bias much?


            Russell Cook says:
            My conclusion can be readily summarized: the accusation [that those who express skepticism about the theory of man-made global warming are being paid by the fossil fuel industry to lie about the issue] appears to be a false claim, a myth generated by a small group of enviro-activists with significant direction from ex-Boston Globe reporter Ross Gelbspan.

            Russell Cook seems to be another inquisitive soul that lives on this Earth looking for accurate information so politicians don’t make catastrophic decisions based on an agenda.

          • Russell Cook says:

            @David Appell – In case you haven’t figured it out yet, donors who are ‘outed’ are sick of torch-wielding / pitchfork-wielding anti-science environmentalist wackos camped out on their front lawns demanding deniers’ heads on a pike over science points which the environmentalist wackos are literally incapable of debating and over corruption accusations the environmentalist wackos are literally incapable of providing evidence for. Meanwhile, sidestep, sidestep, sidestep, that is what you do. Once again, indulge us: where among the collective lot of your esteemed leaders’ writings and presentations is there any physical evidence (full context document scans, undercover video/audio transcripts, leaked emails, money-transfer receipts, etc.) proving skeptic scientists were paid to fabricate demonstratively false science papers, reports, assessments or viewpoints? If you actually had that, you would have smashed me over the head with it by now.

            @Jim Dean – you did notice that nowhere within Desmogblog’s profile of me did they once prove I’m paid to lie, nor did they even once dispute a word I say about their unnamed co-founder or named co-founder . didn’t you?

          • RichardLH says:

            Who gives a damn about the funding (unless it is propaganda in disguise – in which case Peer Review is supposed to squeeze it out).

            It is the science and the data that matters.

          • Bart says:

            It’s silly to imagine that Big Oil has any problem with the AGW scam at all. Either way, they know the world is going to demand their product for the foreseeable future. And, they can use the hysteria to hobble their competition from coal. It’s win-win, and they’re laughing all the way to the bank at the lemmings who unknowingly do their bidding.

          • David Appell says:

            Russel wrote:’
            “@David Appell In case you havent figured it out yet, donors who are outed are sick of torch-wielding / pitchfork-wielding anti-science environmentalist wackos camped out on their front lawns demanding deniers heads on a pike over science points….””

            Russel: Who cares what they think?

            They are science deniers. If they don’t like the label, they shouldn’t deny the science.

        • Jim Dean says:

          @Russell Cook. I did notice. Desmogblog is noted for their hit pieces making opprobrious statements with no proof. I noticed they didn’t make any valid cases directed at you. That’s very impressive, IMHO.

      • RichardLH says:

        Apparently you use YouTube as your data source.

    • mpainter says:

      The longer the pause, the more miserable they get. How they yearn for the “good ol’ days” when the globe was warming and climate disaster was looming. But then the ice stopped melting. Tsk, Tsk.

      • lewis says:

        Dear MPainter,

        I regret to inform you that the ice, in my bourbon, has not stopped melting but when it does, I intend to add more ice, and bourbon.

        And a Merry Christmas to you all – including those of you who are yellow snow eaters.

      • David Appell says:

        The globe is still warming. Over 90% of the trapped heat goes into ocean, which is steadily gaining heat at prodigious rates:

        Roger Pielke Sr, for example, sees ocean heat gain as the best metric of global warming.

        • mpainter says:

          CO2, the Green Gas.

          It’s supposed to warm us too, but it’s a fair conclusion that it don’t, according to the satellite temperature record (surface temperature datasets are not reliable).

        • RichardLH says:

          “The globe is still warming. Over 90% of the trapped heat goes into ocean, which is steadily gaining heat at prodigious rates:”

          Most of that energy is going into rotation storage, not heat.

          • David Appell says:

            “Most of that energy is going into rotation storage, not heat.”

            “Rotation storage.” What the hell does that mean?

            Ocean heat content is increasing — and the increase in accelerating.



          • mpainter says:

            A warmer globe means a better globe. The Arctic has had an increase in its biota in recent years because of a decrease in ice cover, David. This confirmed by the NOAA. More photosynthesis, you see. All life benefits, including polar bears and walruses.

            Do you want that to stop? Long live fossil fuels. Now, if only CO2 would perform the role that the wackos screech about, and start warming.

          • RichardLH says:

            Rotational Momentum Storage. You know, more Ice at the Poles, faster, more water at the Equator, slower. Energy transfer, but not heat.

          • RichardLH says:

            Except, I suppose, at the water/ice interface.

          • Mack says:

            “the trapped heat goes into ocean, which is steadily gaining heat at prodigious rates”
            Yes David..millions of Hiroshima bombs worth of “trapped” heat are now accumulating in the oceans because of the magical CO2. But hang on ,RichardLH tells you the energy is going into “rotational momentum storage” and you say “what the hell is that?” I’d guess even Trenberth wouldn’t know..but don’t tell him, he might come up with another crazy excuse to explain where all the missing heat has gone.
            So….ice melts to water and this slows the planet…riiight.. maybe if CO2 slows it down enough we can all get off and leave Trenberth and you 2 wackos to it.

          • RichardLH says:

            It’s probably there. It is needed to balance the books. But very cold water will do the same job of transferring energy. Just not as heat.

          • David Appell says:

            Painter wrote:
            “A warmer globe means a better globe.”

            You offered no proof of this whatsover.

            Nor did you discuss adaptation. The question isn’t so much the temperature, it’s our ability to adapt to the rapid changes taking place, as well as all other species on the planet.

            So your claim is not only unproven, it’s irrelevant.

          • mpainter says:

            My claim is correct. The IPCC agrees that extreme weather events haven’t increased. A warmer world is a better world for the biosphere. CO2 is plant food. The latest NASA study shows Antarctica gaining ice mass. Tidal gauges on stable coasts show no rise in sea level.

            Besides, you have got it backwards, according to your usual manner: it is for the alarmists to prove their alarmist predictions are true. The skeptics say “show me”. So show us. But you can’t show anything but a puddle of pee.

          • mpainter says:

            The pee, of course, having resulted from an involuntarily contraction of the bladder, an common symptom of fright. You see, David, your condition is a personality disorder that you mistake for science.

  4. Norman says:

    Roy Spencer,

    Excellent humor! College students have lost it! Even liberal Bill Maher doesn’t want to perform in front of college students as they are offended by everything and have lost all sense of humor!

  5. mpainter says:

    Likewise the carol “Silver Bells” will have to go because silver is a “lustrous white metallic element”. Tsk, Tsk. Maybe we can keep this song if we change it to “Tarnished Silver Bells”. Oh, well 🙂

  6. Phil Neel says:

    Apostrophe – one of my favorite albums of all time. I remember fondly going to a Frank Zappa concert to hear him perform that album. It was in the early 70’s in Cincinnati at a place called the “Syria Mosque”.

  7. Svend Ferdinandsen says:

    Even the light from the Sun is said to be white, and think of the white noise. The cat is out of the bag, so we better stop talking at all. You could say it takes a racist to spot racisme.

  8. rah says:

    Their just parroting the bilge their brains have been filled with. If they had come from households with real family values where Christmas is celebrated in the more traditional ways they would have known. If they had teachers that didn’t fill their heads with PC mush they might have figured it out. But neither of those things happened for these poor stupid PC souls now did it! And I wonder why not?

    BTW along those same lines there is breaking news in the NFL.

    The Redskins finally dropped their name:

    “Daniel Snyder, owner of the NFL Redskins, has announced that the team is dropping “Washington” from the team name, and it will henceforth be simply known as “The Redskins.”
    It was reported that he finds the word ‘Washington’ imparts a negative image of poor leadership, mismanagement, corruption, cheating, lying, and graft, and is not a fitting role-model for young fans of football.”

    • Paul.S. says:

      Just yesterday I saw a bumper sticker that says it all it read: LIBERALS: those so open-minded their brains fell out.

  9. rah says:

    their should have been They’re. Sorry.

    • Stonyground says:

      “their should have been Theyre. Sorry.”

      No it shouldn’t you were right the first time. Their = belonging to them. They’re is a conflation of they are.

  10. boris says:

    Well Roy it may not be a white Christmas for the rest of the Country but I can assure that the Pacific Northwest, Northern California, and Colorado River Basin are piling the stuff on. Yet not a peep about how good this is for relieving the drought conditions in the west. As for the pc crowd the ignorami (wouldn’t that be the correct way to signify more than one) vilify Mark Twain who was champion, publisher, and close personal friend of Fredrick Douglas and who, through his publishing house, brought down the Belgian Royalty’s slavery in the Congo. History will either ignore the pc crowd or treat them with the same contempt as the minions of the great Red Cultural Revolution.

  11. michael blazewicz says:

    well there are “whiteheads” (ugly pimples) , women with white hair that dye it any other colour than white (ageist) and white is often associated with death ..So you see, it is all in the context.

  12. Reality says:

    Reality check. Human genomes vary by race at a population level(not applicable to an individual level). No interpretation there! and if the liberal minds (like david a) disagree… please bring some data to the discussion. If have nots want to have, then create, but do not expect to be entitled to the jobs that have been created without contributing. This is major part of the liberal dilusion; even if the subject can not be openly discused.

    • Lewis says:


      You will notice the reason politically incorrect things can’t be discussed is because the PC crowd will attack you, verbally, through social media, your job, in any way they can, if you disagree with them. They are loud, abusive, hateful and just plain ordinary mean.

      What would be amusing if it weren’t so true, is that they don’t want others to have the rights to free speech, which are the same rights which allow them to attack.

      My first real exposure to this was in a political science college class in the mid 70’s when my response to a question didn’t suit. Curious how off track the conversation went – in a hurry. I found the same true at some anti-war rallies I attended. If you didn’t follow in lockstep you were derided.

      Personally, I believe the radical leftists are well organized and funded by communist leaning organizations and even countries.

      The following link is about North Carolina organizations of this type and their intertwining.

      I suspect what you find here is only a sampling.

      Dr. Spencer and others in his field run into this regularly. My wife has run into it in her field – the advocates terrorize anyone who gets in the way of their goals and/or free ride.

    • RichardLH says:

      “Human genomes vary by race at a population level(not applicable to an individual level)”

      Actually that last bit is untrue.

      Human genomes vary broadly by race at a population level and at an individual level describe specifics.”

  13. Steve Ta says:

    The “white christmas” nonsense reminds me of something that happen some years ago, when local radio put out an police appeal asking for a black cab driver who may have witnessed an accident to contact them.

    Many listeners complained that the color of the driver was irrelevant and it was racist to even mention it.

    The broadcaster responded by pointing out that it was the cab that was black, not the driver.

    So who’s being racists here?

  14. C Daulton says:

    If polar snow now blackened by Chinese carbon pollution is politically correct, does that also make yellow snow politically correct?

  15. Dave O. says:

    I just checked out “The Onion”, and their “news” stories didn’t seem as silly as what’s in the so called main stream media.

  16. Tim Wells says:

    We nearly had a white Christmas in the Uk last year, it hit us on boxing day. Here are some photographs to be going on with until it happens again.

  17. Paul S. says:

    Well, here in Mid-Michigan, The sun is shining, the grass is green, and a while ago I saw a convertible go by with the top down. I do so love tropical weather.

  18. Robert Barrow says:

    Unaccountably neglecting the temptation to join this surrounding party atmosphere celebrating human folly and perhaps a bit of seasonal holly, I pause for a moment inspired by the topic of meteorological color recalling the unexpected cloud color I saw in the Arizona Monument Valley country. At first habit passed off my noticing anything different, pink clouds are nothing unusual. But, then it was in the middle of the day and no setting sun was red painting the broken clouds overhead with pink tints. Then struck by this, I just gawked amazed at the pinkness tinting all the fleece floating overhead. For a while I was satisfied with just taking in the unaccustomed scene, I’m sure old hat to the locals. Then the how word welled up. I supposed it had to be the mid day sun’s reflecting the surround prevalence of iron minerals in the widely exposed local sand and rock.

    Had it been the other way, I a local and traveling other landscapes, similar cloud loaded skies would be strangely anemic and pale. Ah, the human beast and his ingrained habits make him a stranger in his own familiar world.

  19. John F. Hultquist says:

    There is an interesting post here:


  20. richard verney says:

    It will be interesting to see Dr Spencer’s update for December.

    As many know, the current strong El Nino has not yet shown up to any large extent in the satellite data. many consider that it will do so in early 2016 and will peak in the first quarter of 2016 before dropping back.

    However, there is some evidence to suggest that during the last week there has been a dramatic drop in temperature anomaly, globally by about 0.5degC and NH by nearly 1degC. See;

    So the questions will be: is the current El Nino beginning to lose traction and if so when will there be a La Nina, and what impact will both of these have on long term temperature anomaly figures?

    Will there be a step change in temperature coincident with the 2015/16 El Nino as there was with the 1997/98 Super El Nino, or will the 2015/16 El Nino merely produce a short term spike like the 2010 El Nino?.

    There could be interesting times ahead and in the run up to AR6.

    PS> HAPPY CHRISTMAS to one and all.

  21. John Smith says:

    So …
    does climate change cause racism
    or did racism cause climate change?

    It’s hard to keep up nowadays.

    Happy Holidays of color!

  22. Dan Pangburn says:

    Insolation (EM radiation from the sun) is a forcing, effective earth radiating temperature is a (negative) forcing, change in albedo is a forcing, etc. Temperature changes as the time-integral of the NET forcing. There can be a step change in forcing but there can be no step change in true temperature. Any step change in reported temperature is therefor a human artifact. The effective time constant for the planet is 5 +/-1 years

    • geran says:

      “Any step change in reported temperature is therefor a human artifact.”

      Good point, Dan. And likely those “adjustments” to the temperature record will have to increase in the coming years to keep the hoax alive.

      • David Appell says:

        And the large adjustments to the temperatures calculated from satellite microwave readings?

        • RichardLH says:

          Which brought both satellite series into better agreement with themselves, and poorer agreement with the Thermometers.

          Please give all the facts, not cherry pick them for effect.

        • David Appell says:

          So UAH copied RSS’s methods.

          When will UAH share their computer code? They’ve avoided doing so since their start.

          At this point, they won’t even try to publish a paper describing their version 6.

          Whatever they are doing, they seem completely isolated.

          • RichardLH says:

            No. Two set of treatment of nearly the same data were brought closer to alignment. There were changes on both sides as each uncovered discrepancies in the others work.

            Standard fare when cross calibrating instruments.

            The rest is Politics.

    • David Appell says:

      Forcing changes continuously, not in “steps.”

      • mpainter says:

        Surface temperature datasets are suspect. Satellite temperature data is preferable as more reliable. See Watts et al, 2015. See also Roy’s preceding post : “These are corrections that the NOAA should have made, but didn’t.”

        • David Appell says:

          Satellite datasets are suspect. See the two biases found by Po-Chedley in the last three years.

          Here’s Carl Mears of RSS:

          Carl Mears, leader of the RSS satellite group, Sept 2014:

          “Does this slow-down in the warming mean that the idea of anthropogenic global warming is no longer valid? The short answer is no. The denialists like to assume that the cause for the model/observation discrepancy is some kind of problem with the fundamental model physics, and they pooh-pooh any other sort of explanation. This leads them to conclude, very likely erroneously, that the long-term sensitivity of the climate is much less than is currently thought.

          “The truth is that there are lots of causes besides errors in the fundamental model physics that could lead to the model/observation discrepancy. I summarize a number of these possible causes below. Without convincing evidence of model physics flaws (and I havent seen any), I would say that the possible causes described below need to be investigated and ruled out before we can pin the blame on fundamental modelling errors.”

      • RichardLH says:

        Measurement of forcing goes in steps. The rest is analogue.

  23. richard verney says:

    IF (and this is only an IF since the future is not yet known) there is no long lasting step change in temperature coincident with the current 2015/16 El Nino, and should a following La Nina bring the temperature anomaly back down, and following that La Nina the temperature anomaly stabilises around the 2001 to 2003 level, by the time AR6 is being written, the ‘pause’ will be over 21 years in duration. In this scenario (which is an IF), then one can expect to see more and more papers putting forward ever lowering figures for Climate sensitivity. In this scenario, one can expect to see many new papers putting Climate sensitivity at less than 1.5degC, and this will make it difficult for AR6.

    In AR5, the then most recent papers were largely ignored, and no ‘consensus’ could be reached on the probable Climate Sensitivity, but if the current El Nino only results in a short term peak and nothing more than that, It will be much more difficult for the IPCC to ignore the many papers published since 2011 all putting Climate Sensitivity below 2degC, and many much lower than that.

    • geran says:

      “…and many much lower than that.”

      Yes, as in: sensitivity = 0.0 +/- 0.1.

      • richard verney says:

        That could well turn out to be the order of the day.

        But already, we have enough data to suggest that the no feedback position of ~1.2degc with an error margin of say +/- 0.6degC can’t be far wrong. And given the stability of Earth’s Climate and that we are here to investigate after some 4.5 billion years, realistically, what are the prospects of there not being a net negative feedback?

        It looks like it will soon be difficult to claim a Climate sensitivity figure higher than 1.2 degC.

        • David Appell says:

          “…and should a following La Nina bring the temperature anomaly back down, and following that La Nina the temperature anomaly stabilises around the 2001 to 2003 level, by the time AR6 is being written, the pause will be over 21 years in duration.

          In other words, if temperatures decease, then they will have decreased.


    • David Appell says:

      “IF (and this is only an IF since the future is not yet known) there is no long lasting step change in temperature coincident with the current 2015/16 El Nino, and should a following La Nina bring the temperature anomaly back down, and following that La Nina the temperature anomaly stabilises around the 2001 to 2003 level, by the time AR6 is being written, the pause will be over 21 years in duration.”

      If if if.

      Such a change didn’t happen after the 1997-98 El Nino. Why should it happen now?

  24. Richtee says:

    Love your science, the politics not so much.

  25. Anonymous says:


  26. tim wells says:

    Snow is white fact, I have never seen any black snow in 51 years.

  27. Vincent says:

    This might be considered an amusing post from Roy Spencer, but let’s get the facts straight, in case anyone is confused. Whilst the shade of white has clear racial associations, ‘snow’, ‘Christmas’, and ‘climate’ have nothing to do with race.

    Snow frequently occurs at extreme northern or southern locations, or at high altitudes, and Christmas has nothing to do with Jesus Christ. He would have abhorred the practice of millions of people celebrating his birthday in such an ostentatious way. Jews did not celebrate birthdays during the times of Jesus Christ.

    Christmas is a pagan festival.

    However, the racial connoations of the shade of white pervade all cultures. White is often viewed as being pure and clean. It’s why millions of people throughout the world continue to eat white rice, which dietary science has proved to be nutritionally inferior to brown rice.

    Even desperately poor people who are likely already suffering from a lack of nutrients, continue to eat white rice, because they think it is superior.

    Very sad!

    • RichardLH says:

      “Christmas is a pagan festival.”

      Christmas is an adopted pagan festival.
      Always a good tactic when replacing an existing meme.

  28. richard verney says:

    I guess that it has been cold up in the Arctic the last couple of months since Arctic ice, this year is presently recovering well.

    The December extent is the largest it has been these past 10 years; it currently stands at over 10 million square km, which is about 1 million square km more than the 2012 figure.


    It will be interesting to see Dr Spencer’s year end update for the satellite data.

    • Toneb says:

      Mmmm … interesting

      This says it is the 3rd lowest for this TOY.

      As does this:

      Standing at 12.636Km^2
      Beaten by 2010 and 2012.

      In fact so does this – from the website that you obtained that graph from.

      Explained thus by them….

      “The plot above replaces an earlier sea ice extent plot, that was based on data with the coastal zones masked out. This coastal mask implied that the previous sea ice extent estimates were underestimated. The new plot displays absolute sea ice extent estimates. The old plot can still be viewed “here” for a while.”

    • David Appell says:

      Richard: Arctic sea ice is not “recovering.”

      As of 12/27, Arctic SIE was -1.6% below 2014’s value — a relatively large drop, especially at a time when this is typically little variation in SIE yr-to-yr.

      latest data:


      PIOMAS’s model calculated Nov 15 Arctic sea ice volume to be 10.4% below Nov 2014’s value.

      The data does not show Arctic sea ice recovering, Richard.

      • mpainter says:

        Good. Less ice is better. Warmer is better, it boosts life in the Arctic. Cooling is a killer.

        Unfortunately, the ice loss has stabilized these past seven or eight years and will likely return to former levels in the cycle of natural variability. That is too bad.

        • lewis says:

          According to the Rutgers Snow Lab (

          records since 1967 show the fall of the past 3 years having the 1st, 5th and 6th most snow cover.

          We need more CO2 to keep the weather warmer. Cold is the killer.

        • David Appell says:

          mpainter says:
          “Good. Less ice is better. Warmer is better, it boosts life in the Arctic.”

          Prove it. Or retract your claim.

          • mpainter says:

            David, get an education. Nuclear physics leaves you swallowing dust in climate science. Less ice means more photosynthesis. Do I need to explain the rest to you? There are several studies which show an increase in the biota of the Arctic. All life forms, including walruses and polar bears, have increased in the Arctic in recent decades.

            You see, David, it is one of the fundamental principles of the life sciences that cooling is a killer and warming is beneficial. This is textbook stuff, yet you, and other alarmists, lack the fundaments of understanding in this field.

            Scratch an alarmist, what you find is an individual who is ignorant of the fundamentals in one of the areas of science that constitute the entirety of climate studies, an area requiring multi-discipline expertise. What we see is individuals such as yourself pronouncing on matters of which they possess a fundamental ignorance.

            By the way, I do not expect the beneficial, life promoting conditions of the present warming of Arctic environs to continue. We had the same degree of warming in the earlier twentieth century, but that reversed and ice extent grew, reaching maximum extent in the late seventies.

            So, it is confirmed by modern science: warming benefits the biosphere. There are other benefits to increasing atmospheric plant food. Now, does not that warm your poor, shriveled soul? Or do you gnash your teeth?

      • RichardLH says:

        Ah, but where did all that Ice go?

        To the Equator as cold sea water. Not hot, cold.

      • Bart says:

        Nonsense, David.

        The recovery trend is quite obvious, and your cherry-picking disingenuous.

        • Toneb says:

          The “Trend” is the thick straight line that extends from the top left to the bottom right in the graph you link my friend.

          It is NOT cherry-picking to point out that that line is the trend.
          You are turning logic on it’s head when it is you who are “cherry-picking” the recent “recovery trend” … as though it were a statically significant trend.
          In fact the last 5 years look remarkably like the shape of the graph from 1981-86…… but with ~9000 km^3 of ice less (a staggering loss).

          Any short term ups/downs that wander from that long term trend mean nothing unless they continue for a period that will remove “weather”.
          The Arctic has weather as well – just like the US, UK and anywhere else on the planet … even a few years colder than average “weather”.

          Though actually it is the spring early melt that is most important for the season’s overall melt. In the early formation of albedo lowering melt-ponds.

          • RichardLH says:

            Do you understand the limitations of OLS when it comes to long period signals?

          • Bart says:

            That is a trend. It is over a longer interval than the past 5 years, but that is still a blink of an eye in climate terms.

            It is a fact that, over the past 5 years, there has been an increasing trend. And, it is a fact that you cannot say with any certainty whether that trend will reverse or continue.

          • David Appell says:

            “It is a fact that, over the past 5 years, there has been an increasing trend.”

            It isn’t statistically significant.

          • RichardLH says:

            “It is a fact that, over the past 5 years, there has been an increasing trend.

            It isnt statistically significant.”

            There are no stats that will reliably pick up any wave in the signal with periods longer than half the data capture window.

            That’s the lower Nyquist limit. Period = 1/Frequency

          • Bart says:

            Exactly, RLH. David’s “point” is simplistic and jejune.

            When there is a significant 60 year correlation in the data, any 30 year calculated trend has little to no predictive value for the next 30 years. OTOH, a statistically significant inflection does have predictive value.

            So, it is a battle of models. A trend with noise model that is assuredly wrong, versus a periodically correlated model which is likely at least partially correct.

        • mpainter says:


          The trend will reverse because this is the end of the Holocene and the overall trend has been cooling throughout the last 4-6 thousand years or so. The last four thousand years has been nominated as the “neo-glacial” because of the reappearance and growth of glaciers where they had disappeared during the Holocene Optimum.

          You will never hear alarmists admit that any AGW effect could be lost as noise in the natural trends of climate. But that is what happens (if there is, indeed, any such AGW effect).

          • Ross says:

            Civilization (mankind) is just an artifact of long periods of time as well. An aberration you see just like the current warming. Many extinctions. Climate Deniers maybe one species that die out very soon long before this artifact of warming.

          • mpainter says:

            Fossil fuels will die out before it warms anymore. In fact, the next ice age is coming. Now, there is something to wring your poor, overwrought hands about. If you like to wring your hands. Skeptics are on the increase and the pause will end with a cooling trend. It’s called natural variability. Read and weep.

  29. Vincent says:

    I’m finding a lot of confusion on this issue. The Antarctic is apparently gaining sea ice, but not to the extent that the Arctic is losing sea ice. Can we be sure about this?

    For example, is the statement in the paragraph below true? The figures on this issue seem to vary a lot according to which site provides the information.

    “The vast majority, almost 90 percent, of the Earth’s ice mass is in Antarctica.”

    If this is approximately true, or even if the true figure is 75% or 80%, then what happens in the Antarctic regarding ice-melt is surely more significant than what happens in the Arctic, with respect to global warming.

    However, I understand that because a larger percentage of the world’s population live closer to the Arctic than to the Antarctic, any melting of ice in the Arctic will be viewed with greater alarm, and especially the effect such melting could have on those lovely polar bears, which we don’t have in the Antarctic. Our penguins are just fine.

    • lewis says:

      Richard, you misunderstand the alarmists/socialists/authoritarians – the point is to scare people, not to report the truth.

    • David Appell says:

      Vincent says:
      “Im finding a lot of confusion on this issue. The Antarctic is apparently gaining sea ice.”

      Yes, the Arctic is losing sea ice (mass) about 10 times faster than the Antarctic is gaining it.

      And anyway, Antarctic sea ice for yesterday was 20.0% below its value of a year ago. (NSIDC data.)

      • mpainter says:

        And did CO2 does that?

      • RichardLH says:

        How to characterise a return to normal as a disaster!

        It’s all in the Headlines. Don’t read the body text.

      • JohnKl says:

        Hi David Appell,

        You stated:

        “Yes, the Arctic is losing sea ice (mass) about 10 times faster than the Antarctic is gaining it.”

        Ten times faster you say? Is that measured as mass, volume or percentage?

        Have a great day!

      • JohnKl says:

        Hi David Appell,

        You state:

        “And anyway, Antarctic sea ice for yesterday was 20.0% below its value of a year ago. (NSIDC data.)”

        It’s currently Summer time in the Southern Hemisphere. By a year ago, do you and/or the NSIDC mean a year ago today? this month? Or do you just mean last year? Last year by the way was 2014. Tomorrow that all changes.

        Have a great day!

  30. RichardLH says:

    “The Antarctic is apparently gaining sea ice, but not to the extent that the Arctic is losing sea ice. Can we be sure about this?”

    The latest data shows this has now stopped, For how long? No-one knows.

    Antarctica has returned to near normal. The Artic may be headed that way as well. Probably take a few years. Mind you, CO2 ‘could’ be the cause!

  31. DouglasECotton says:

    No snow (yellow or white) for Switzerland either.

    “Switzerland has experienced its warmest December since the country that founded winter tourism began keeping records 150 years ago.

    Clear skies and dry ground have seen the Alpine nation end the year 3.4C above the long-term historical average for December, a climatologist for the federal office of meteorology and climatology (MeteoSwiss) said on Monday.”

    • RichardLH says:

      Still uncovering stuff from way, way back in time then?

    • DouglasECotton says:

      More news just in:

      “The north pole could be hotter than Chicago, Vienna or Istanbul on Wednesday due to the low pressure system that has brought tornados to Dallas and high winds and heavy rainfall to the UK. The Arctic could reach temperatures about 35C (63F) warmer than average for this time of year, meteorologists have warned.

      Computer model projections earlier this week suggested that the air temperature at the pole, which is currently shrouded in 24-hour darkness, could reach 5C, rather than the usual -30 to -35C, according to Mashable. This would make it milder than much of Canada and the US.

      Temperature fluctuations are fairly common in the Arctic, where shifts in sea ice cover can significantly affect local air temperatures, but such a strong variation is extreme.
      Thats absolutely terrifying and incredibly rare,said meteorologist Eric Holthaus ”

      Of course (I hear you say), like the Swiss climatologist, Eric must be part of the conspiracy.

      • Mack says:

        Eric is absolutely terrified…he’s not part of a conspiracy, but he did guzzle a full bottle of Kool-Aid in his formative years.

        • RichardLH says:

          “The north pole could be hotter than Chicago..”

          you missed a rather important word there

          “The north pole could be relatively hotter than Chicago..”

          its all about the anomalies, the rest is just headline writing by subs.

          In Absolutes it will still be very, very cold up there.

          • douglasECotton says:

            Let me correct you there.
            The article stated that the absolute temperature could be +5C.
            I believe that the headline is therefore correct and you have misunderstood.

          • RichardLH says:

            Sub-editors have a lot to answer for. They get to do the Headline. The body of the article does not always match that.

      • RichardLH says:

        Ok. Is it you again Doug. Welcome back. Found the missing minus/zero weighted term yet?

        • RichardLH says:

          Or is that a different Doug?

          • douglasECotton says:

            I am the original Douglas E Cotton. That other person is an imposter.

            I have heard a rumour that he is taking time off to attend remedial physics classes for senior citizens.

            Another rumour is that he lost $10,000 betting on the horses. It appears he had developed a theory which was supposed to predict the winner of every race. Something to do with the effect of gravity, the mass of the jockey, and the the angular speed at which the horses go round and round the track.

            I have also heard a rumour that he is suffering from heat stroke.

          • RichardLH says:

            And there I was thinking that a sharp piece of logic had punctured his balloon like bluster. 🙂

      • Thylacine at your heals says:

        DouglasECotton aka Dr. No,

        You quote:

        ‘Computer model projections earlier this week suggested that the air temperature at the pole, which is currently shrouded in 24-hour darkness, could reach 5C, rather than the usual -30 to -35C, according to Mashable.’

        So what? A computer model could just as well project 100C temps for the same region. It’s mere speculation. What is the actual recorded temperature? If the actual temperature falls in the 5C some oil and gas projects in the region might appear more attractive.

      • RichardLH says:

        I am sorry, I must pick nicky picky holes in your case as well.

        Historical records get very blurry even a short way back in time. Recorded history in the USA is but a small amount about what we now know about climate.

        Treat what you says with caution.

        • RichardLH says:

          P.S. I used to live in a cottage who’s walls and timbers pre-dated the founding of the USA. Always a nice point for those who have a slightly parochial view of history when speaking round dinner tables.

        • douglasECotton says:

          (1) It is not my “case”, simply a statement from a so-called expert.
          (2) I bet you would not be so blas if the forecast was for record cold.
          (3) The north pole does not lie within the USA

          • RichardLH says:

            1. Better if you use your own words and thinking. Lets everybody know what you are saying rather than being a mirror for someone else

            2. I’m a scientists. I don’t bet on the future of the data.
            3. Yep. Did geography early on.

            Can’t understand why equal area projections are not more widely used in CS. At lot less co-ordinate fiddling to get to an answer.

    • Thylacine at your heals says:

      DouglasECotton aka Dr. No aka Alfred E Newman,

      You quote:

      “Clear skies and dry ground have seen the Alpine nation end the year 3.4C above the long-term historical average for December…”

      How far back does the long-term hysterical average to?

      • douglasECotton says:

        I would imagine the record there goes back about 150 years at least.

        • douglasECotton says:

          Or was that a (hysterical) joke?
          I have trouble detecting sarcasm.

          • Thylacine at your heals says:


            Ok! Ok! Just a little attempt at sarcasm. However, I must admit the hysterical temperature record you reference probably pales by comparison to anything derived from the University of Colorado or NOAA ( guffaws heard around the world )!

            Have a Happy New Year!

        • RichardLH says:

          Only that short! So periods longer than half that are yet to show up definitely in any of the records?

        • Thylacine at your heals says:


          You stated:

          “I would imagine the record there goes back about 150 years at least.”

          In other words, you really don’t know!

          • DouglasECotton says:

            Thylacine at your heals,

            Actually, my original post stated:

            Switzerland has experienced its warmest December since the country that founded winter tourism began keeping records 150 years ago.”

            Is that long enough for you? Why quibble over the length of the record?
            You and others would be the first to celebrate if the record showed it to be the coldest December.
            You can run, but you cannot hide from the fact that the earth is warming.

            p.s. What does your moniker signify? What are my “heals”?

          • DouglasECotton says:

            p.s. Call me Scrooge, but I am not a fan of New Year celebrations with all that forced bonhomie and endless fireworks.

            However, best wishes and good health to all for 2016.

  32. Chris says:

    Could geomagnetic polarity have any effect on climate changes, in addition to El Nio etc, minor c02 impacts etc…? Are there any credible scientists that have experience in this field?

  33. Norman says:


    You linked to this statement: Clear skies and dry ground have seen the Alpine nation end the year 3.4C above the long-term historical average for December

    And also to: The north pole could be hotter than Chicago, Vienna or Istanbul on Wednesday due to the low pressure system that has brought tornados to Dallas and high winds and heavy rainfall to the UK. The Arctic could reach temperatures about 35C (63F) warmer than average for this time of year, meteorologists have warned.”

    The overall globe has warmed only 0.5 C since 1980 and basically flat-lined since 2000.

    So if there are areas on the planet much warmer than normal then there also must be other areas colder than normal. You can’t have a Switzerland 3.4 C above normal without some place else being cooler or you would have more than a flat-line temperature since 2000. It all balances out it you would add up all the temperatures.

    I think you need to read some of these historical weather extremes before getting too excited by weather anomalies that seem to happen every year and have been since weather has been logged.

    I think of all the blogs only Steve Goddard goes back to report on Historical severe weather to clearly show that weather has always had extreme events somewhere at some time.

    Do you propose a logical mechanism as to why a flat-line in global temperature is triggering ever increasing severe weather? Or even how 0.5 C since 1980 is responsible. Roy Spencer has extensively studied meteorology and he is not seeing it.

    Now logically wouldn’t it be more likely that the media (who promotes CAGW) has chosen to link climate change to every extreme weather event that takes place across the globe to generate a sense of fear to manipulate the general public to take action against a problem that does not really exist? The media is globalist in extent, owned by globalist corporations that want to create a global government (that they then rule). Climate Change is an excellent means to achieve such a goal since it seems to present a global threat that requires all people to act upon in unified way.

  34. Vincent says:

    Quote from Roy Spencer:

    “Most of the depth of the worlds oceans is very cold, even in the tropics. Only the near-surface layers are warm, with the rest of the ocean depths being filled up over thousands of years by surface water chilled to low temperatures at high latitudes. (This leads to the interesting observation that the mass-weighted average temperature of the climate system is actually very cold).”

    The above comment from Roy in the article raises the question, ‘What actually is the average temperature of all the water in all of the oceans?’ I imagine this in itself would be very difficult to calculate, as well as the average temperature of the entire atmosphere.

    Doing a search on the internet I get the impression that the average temperature of all the sea water in all of the oceans is in the range of 38 to 39 degrees Fahrenheit, not much above the freezing point of fresh water. That’s surprisingly cold.

    I can’t find any information on the average temperature of the enitire atmosphere, which includes the Troposphere, Stratosphere, Mesosphere, Thermosphere and Exosphere.

    I’m assuming it would be impossible to calculate an accurate, average temperature because the variations within such a large area are so numerous, and changing continuously from second to second and minute to minute. Is this correct?