Global Satellites: 2016 not Statistically Warmer than 1998

January 3rd, 2017 by Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

Strong December Cooling Leads to 2016 Being Statistically Indistinguishable from 1998

The Version 6.0 global average lower tropospheric temperature (LT) anomaly for December 2016 was +0.24 deg. C, down substantially from the November value of +0.45 deg. C (click for full size version):

The resulting 2016 annual average global temperature anomaly is +0.50 deg. C, which is (a statistically insignificant) 0.02 deg. C warmer than 1998 at +0.48 deg. C. We estimate that 2016 would have had to be 0.10 C warmer than 1998 to be significantly different at the 95% confidence level. Both 2016 and 1998 were strong El Nino years.

The 38 years in the satellite record, ranked from warmest to coolest (and ignoring statistical uncertainty) are:

RANK YEAR deg.C.
01 2016 +0.50
02 1998 +0.48
03 2010 +0.34
04 2015 +0.26
05 2002 +0.22
06 2005 +0.20
07 2003 +0.19
08 2014 +0.18
09 2007 +0.16
10 2013 +0.13
11 2001 +0.12
12 2006 +0.11
13 2009 +0.10
14 2004 +0.08
15 1995 +0.07
16 2012 +0.06
17 1987 +0.05
18 1988 +0.04
19 2011 +0.02
20 1991 +0.02
21 1990 +0.01
22 1997 -0.01
23 1996 -0.01
24 1999 -0.02
25 2000 -0.02
26 1983 -0.04
27 1980 -0.04
28 1994 -0.06
29 2008 -0.10
30 1981 -0.11
31 1993 -0.20
32 1989 -0.21
33 1979 -0.21
34 1986 -0.22
35 1984 -0.24
36 1992 -0.28
37 1982 -0.30
38 1985 -0.36

The global, hemispheric, and tropical LT anomalies from the 30-year (1981-2010) average for the last 24 months are:

YEAR MO GLOBE NHEM. SHEM. TROPICS
2015 01 +0.30 +0.44 +0.15 +0.13
2015 02 +0.19 +0.34 +0.04 -0.07
2015 03 +0.18 +0.28 +0.07 +0.04
2015 04 +0.09 +0.19 -0.01 +0.08
2015 05 +0.27 +0.34 +0.20 +0.27
2015 06 +0.31 +0.38 +0.25 +0.46
2015 07 +0.16 +0.29 +0.03 +0.48
2015 08 +0.25 +0.20 +0.30 +0.53
2015 09 +0.23 +0.30 +0.16 +0.55
2015 10 +0.41 +0.63 +0.20 +0.53
2015 11 +0.33 +0.44 +0.22 +0.52
2015 12 +0.45 +0.53 +0.37 +0.61
2016 01 +0.54 +0.69 +0.39 +0.84
2016 02 +0.83 +1.16 +0.50 +0.99
2016 03 +0.73 +0.94 +0.52 +1.09
2016 04 +0.71 +0.85 +0.58 +0.93
2016 05 +0.54 +0.65 +0.44 +0.71
2016 06 +0.34 +0.51 +0.17 +0.37
2016 07 +0.39 +0.48 +0.30 +0.48
2016 08 +0.43 +0.55 +0.32 +0.49
2016 09 +0.44 +0.49 +0.39 +0.37
2016 10 +0.41 +0.42 +0.39 +0.46
2016 11 +0.45 +0.41 +0.50 +0.37
2016 12 +0.24 +0.19 +0.30 +0.21

The UAH global image for December, 2016 (and annual image for 2016) should be available in the next several days here.

The new Version 6 files should be updated soon, and are located here:

Lower Troposphere: http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/v6.0/tlt/uahncdc_lt_6.0.txt
Mid-Troposphere: http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/v6.0/tmt/uahncdc_mt_6.0.txt
Tropopause: http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/v6.0/ttp/uahncdc_tp_6.0.txt
Lower Stratosphere: http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/v6.0/tls/uahncdc_ls_6.0.txt


836 Responses to “Global Satellites: 2016 not Statistically Warmer than 1998”

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  1. jimc says:

    I can imagine what the propaganda machine will make of statistically insignificant.

    • George E. Smith says:

      Well as far as the actual universe is concerned, ANYTHING statistical is totally irrelevant.

      The universe neither knows nor cares about statistics. It only knows what to do with current real time values, and it does what they dictate.

      G

      • AlanF says:

        How much of the heat island effect is elevated dew point because of combustion of fossil fuels?

        • Trevor Marr says:

          The Maunder Minimum does not care about how humans benefit from fossil fuel and oil.

          We simply need the gov’t to issue 2 cards, but you can ONLY sign 1 card.

          Card#1 – I support Fossil Fuels/oil.

          Card#2 – I do not support Fossil Fuels/oil.

          You can only sign 1 card. But in order to get gas, propane, plastic, anything made with fossil fuels/oil, or drive a car, ride a bus, take a plane to the Tropics like our PM does, anything powered by fossil fuels/oil, use a computer, cell phone, iPhone, or even try to buy a banana from another Country brought to Canada via fossil fuels/oil, then YOU must present a signed card #1!

          There will not be many signed #2 cards! THAT will get rid of all the eco hypocrites!

          We need optimization/innovation for the ‘capables’, not senseless subsidization of the ‘incapables’!

          When it gets COLD again, like during the Little Ice Age. Will the Liberals and NDP and Democrats use oil? Yes they will!

      • Richard Chase says:

        Statistical significance is a measure of the likely actual difference between two populations (as represented by numbers) whether you are comparing something “universal” or simply global data sets.

    • No need for a propaganda machine as people have eyes, and most of us can read a graph. Even a fool can see an upward trend, and if things don’t turn around as Dr Spencer hopes, you will need to devise a new baseline.Oh, and forget about weather events that are cold, as these do not determine our climate…the trends and statistics as a whole do, and this can clearly be seen even by the good doctor’s graph.Statistics can be distorted, but arctic ice and glacial melt can’t.

      • Michael van der Riet says:

        Thank you for mentioning baseline. How would you establish baseline? The climate models have convincingly demonstrated that they are unfit for purpose. Not because the modelers are stupid, far from it, but because we know so little about climate science. I say that without CO2, temperatures today would be at least a degree higher. Prove me wrong.

        • Duh says:

          CO2 is a greenhouse glass.

          what you imply about less CO2 would be as nonsensical to say that a glass of water in which i wouldn’t have sprinkled Salt would be saltier than if i did.

    • Ceist says:

      RSS Press release

      Atmospheric temperature measured by satellites sets new record in 2016

      http://images.remss.com/papers/rsstech/Jan_5_2017_news_release.pdf

      • Gordon Robertson says:

        Ceist…”RSS Press release….Atmospheric temperature measured by satellites sets new record in 2016″

        That’s because they cooled 1998 off. You can’t trust RSS, they were formed to debunk UAH and they failed.

  2. Harry Twinotter says:

    The chart clearly shows a global warming trend, especially the 5 year average.

    • I assume you mean the 13-month running average…but the trend is only 50% of the trend in the climate models being used to change energy policy. And even half of the very weak ocean warming trend since the 1950s might well be natural. So, “global warming” as observed doesn’t mean what most people think it means.

      • Harry Twinotter says:

        Sorry I meant the 13 month running average.

        But warming is still warming, this falsifies the hypothesis of no warming put out by some. Considering no significant forcings other than greenhouse gases have been found, draw your own conclusion.

        I do not understand how you can comment on data from 1950 when you only have data going back to 1979.

        The surface temperature trend is likely to match the climate models bettter.

        • I was referring to our published analysis of the global-deep ocean temperature changes since the mid-1950s…if you want to talk about “global warming”, that is the parameter and time period most looked to for establishing warming of the global climate system: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13143-014-0011-z

          Surface data have errors the satellite data don’t have, adjustments much larger than the satellite adjustments, and their global sampling is rather poor.

          • and since I am a “lukewarmer”, I don’t ascribe to any “no warming” hypothesis. I’m not even sure what that means…it’s always warming or cooling…the question is how much of recent, rather benign warming is our fault, and what if anything can be done about it? Conflating non-zero warming with “OMG we have to do something” would be dishonest.

          • steven mosher says:

            Actually the coverage is comparable even better in the time domain, the satellites structural un certainty is much higher, just compare all your versions from the first to the current to see how much your modelling assumptions drive your answer. Our adjustments are actually small during the time period, but go ahead and publish your RAW data before and after corrections for diurnal drift, orbital decay and AMSU adjustments. the fact is you have never published a raw series so that people can compare.

            Go ahead publish the raw data or publish your code for version 6.

            you wont.

          • Harry Twinotter says:

            “adjustments much larger than the satellite adjustments,”

            I beg to differ.

            Anyway, I see where this “discussion” is going. Another time.

          • SkepticGoneWild says:

            Harry,

            No one cares. Go moan, wail, gnash your teeth, and scream “the sky is falling” elsewhere, or whatever you alarmist clowns do.

            The earth is better off a little warmer anyway. And the current minor warming is not unprecedented anyway.

          • JasG says:

            “Actually the coverage is comparable even better in the time domain”

            What an outrageous untruth! Coverage is blindingly obviously inferior for the sparse land-based thermometers combined with well-known inaccurate sea data prior to 2005.

            For the USA (the only area of the world with decent thermometer density) all of the warming trend comes from adjustments. Whether correct or not (and since the biggest one, tobs, is pure pessimistic guesswork then that is unlikely) having all of your trend from adjustments means the data is not fit for policy. For the rest of the world the raw data is unreliable in the extreme and any adjustments could only be guesswork but should probably be more down than up thanks to well-known UHI issues at most locations; the data never having been intended for this purpose.

            Satellite corrections otoh are much easier because accurate calibration is possible at disparate, quality locations and tus accurate corrections can be applied to all the data at once, rather than at each thermometer adjustment being different. ie it is a scientifically accurate and unbiased process which is backed up by other satellite recons using different techniques and also by radiosondes. The land data is only backed up by itself: Regardless of how many others produce a plot it is all from the same sparse & spotty selection.

            Land-based data was only intended as a backup for the accurate satellite data, It is abjectly stupid or politically-motivated-reasoning to pretend they can supplant them. Where else in climate science does anyone argue that satellite data is somehow more unreliable than sparse land-based data? Answer: nowhere!

          • Nate says:

            Jas. Objective observers have noted that the satellite adjustements have had much larger impacts on the trends than the surface records. For example, the most recent adjustment cut the 38y trend of the Arctic in half. Why? Because modeling and asumptions about the atmosphere are required. This track record cannot be ignored.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            stephen mosher…”Go ahead publish the raw data or publish your code for version 6.”

            Go back to your cave, you haven’t the foggiest notion of what you are saying. Publish raw data without corrections for orbital drift, etc????

            Where else in science would you find such raw data? Do you see surface stations sources like NOAA publishing temp max/mins? No…they give you an average.

            They don’t even give you all the data these days. They slash 5000 stations from a global pool of 6500 stations and SYNTHESIZE temperatures for the 5000 in a climate model based on 1500 stations.

            Why do you accept that crud and whine about corrections for orbital decay? Are you going to do that yourself, or is your implication that UAH cannot be trusted?

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            JasG…”rather than at each thermometer adjustment being different.”

            As you have implied, without individual thermometer adjustments they would not be able to throw out the cooler ones while emphasizing the warmer ones. NOAA has perfected the art of obfuscating the temperature record by blatantly slashing 5000 surface stations from the global pool of 6500 then synthesizing them is a climate model.

          • Bart says:

            There are 7280 GHCN stations worldwide:

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instrumental_temperature_record#/media/File:GHCN_Temperature_Stations.png

            That is an average of 27 thousand square miles per station, which would be a 165 X 165 mile square at the equator. What is the weather like 165 miles from where you are right now? Anything like what it is where you are?

            And, of course, it’s worse than this, because the stations are not uniformly distributed, being particularly dense in the US. And, they’ve been anything but uniformly cited over time.

            Yet, this I will say: up until the Karlization of the surface records, the surface data sets significantly agreed with the satellite records. They altered the surface data through nefarious means, and now they want to corrupt the satellite data as well or, failing that, to plant doubt regarding the satellite records’ fidelity. It’s total BS.

          • Nate says:

            Bart,

            Bart, No I would say that the temperature anomaly (above or below average) is often quite similar 165 miles away, because weather systems are often quite large. Any errors from this will be both positive and negative and will average to near 0 when considering the whole globe.

            My question for you is how much of a difference to long term trends do you think comes from poor sampling? Can u estimate the size of the effect? I think you you are assuming it is much worse than it actually is.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            Bart…”There are 7280 GHCN stations worldwide…”

            Not all of them are used. I got the 6500 number from an old NOAA site when they were willing to admit to that.

            https://web.archive.org/web/20130201082455/http://www.noaa.gov/features/02_monitoring/weather_stations.html

            Also…try this:

            https://chiefio.wordpress.com/gistemp/

            All the NOAA and GHCN fudgings are listed and explained.

          • Olof R says:

            The satellite series are much more uncertain than the surface series, claiming something else is just ridiculous..
            The overall trend of the three most recent TMT-products from UAH, RSS and STAR vary from 0.08 to 0.14 C/ decade (indeed with the two latter at 0.14 C). The global surface datasets vary by far less, 0.17-0.18 C/decade.

            Hence, saying that the 95% confidence interval of the annual value in UAH v6 TLT is only 0.10 C, can not be true. It is maybe 0.10 if all structural uncertainty is ignored.
            So really, I dont think it is possible in UAH v6 TLT to tell apart 1998, 2010 and 2016 significantly..

            If 0.10 C should be the typical confidence interval of satellite product, then would 2016 be significantly warmer than 1998 in UAH 5.6 TLT and RSS v4 TTT.

          • David Appell says:

            Gordon Robertson says:
            “Wheres the proof that nitrogen and oxygen cannot independently absorb and emit energy to space”

            All greenhouse gases consist of molecules with three atoms or more. Only they have the vibrational and rotational states whose transitions are in the infrared.

          • Geoff Wood says:

            So heated to Earth’s surface Tmax temperatures Nitrogen and Oxygen stay warm forever without GHG radiations to space?

            Is that what you believe David A?

          • Bart says:

            Nate:

            The weather varies very dramatically 165 miles from where I am right now. There is snow North of me that far, and summer-like warmth 165 miles South.

            But, as I said, the surface data agreed with the satellite data pre-Karlization. The problem isn’t so much the data as it is the post-processing of the data.

            Olof R:

            “The satellite series are much more uncertain than the surface series…”

            Ridiculous. The satellite series are far more globally comprehensive, and far less altered with dubious “adjustments”. The surface sets have been virtually continuously “adjusted” to reflect the warmist bias. Prior to Karlization, the various sets were in close agreement. What changed was the surface data, and it changed dramatically, under preposterous justifications.

            “The global surface datasets vary by far less, 0.17-0.18 C/decade.”

            Real data vary. Far from being an indication of the surface sets’ worth, this is an indication that they have been manipulated to reflect a preconceived outcome. It’s a “tell”.

          • Olof R says:

            Bart, you obviously don’t have a clue about all adjustments behind a satellite product, and all possible choices that have been done, sometimes completely arbitrary. And please, don’t come with silly conspiracy theories, they have no place in a serious scientific discussion.

            Of course data vary, but it is no good sign if different scientific teams come to widely different conclusion after analyses with the same raw data.

            Further, your belief in the necessity of near global coverage, is very very exaggerated.
            Actually, you can throw away 99.87 % of the spatial information in UAH TLT, only use 18 points worldwide, and still produce a global dataset that is nearly indistinguishable from the original. Watch this chart:
            https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B_dL1shkWewadExwM3VOaVJBUU0

          • Bart says:

            Olof – please do not insult my intelligence in multitudinous fashion. You know nothing about me. I am well aware of the satellite sensor models and orbit dependencies. The adjustments are not arbitrary to any significant degree. Certainly not to the degree of arbitrariness associated with the notorious “bucket adjustments” to the surface records. Not even close.

            Again, the acid test is, all records were in agreement before the Karlization of the surface temperature record which just happened, mirabile dictu!, to extend the warming just when the models were on the verge of catastrophic failure to track reality.

            It’s not a “conspiracy theory” when they’re doing it right out in the open before your eyes. So please, toss the argument from incredulity (if the alarmists didn’t have logical fallacies galore, they’d have nothing at all).

            You may be idiot enough to believe that cock and bull story. I’m not. And, neither are a growing number of scientists and lay people who have observed the chicanery going on with the surface records.

          • Bart says:

            “Actually, you can throw away 99.87 % of the spatial information in UAH TLT, only use 18 points worldwide…”

            A carefully selected 18 points. I wonder if you have even ever heard of the Intermediate Value Theorem. You can always do this. Always. It shows nothing, because you have to know the points a priori, and you cannot know that.

            Look, this is very simple – more measurements are better than fewer. This is always the case.

          • Olof R says:

            Bart, I said that the choices are arbitrary, not the adjustments.
            Have you ever heard of the Cadillac calibration choice? Goes like this:
            -Look, these two satellites differ by 0.2 C/ decade during the overlap.
            -OK, we pick the one with the lowest trend, and discard the other one “due to drifts”.
            Validation with independent data is obviously not needed for significant choices. However validation would suggest that the choice was completely wrong:
            https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B_dL1shkWewaOEd5TUlTYWlMUW8

            The 18 points are not carefully selected, it is the first try with a regular pattern with one point in each RATPAC region, the first level of averaging for that global dataset. If I use all 85 stations (not in a regular pattern) the global coverage validation looks like this:
            https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B_dL1shkWewaT083ZHdiWHhieTA

            Why these exercises? To make sure that there is no bias involved in this validation:
            https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B_dL1shkWewaNDVmS0t1bjZjQXM

          • David Appell says:

            Geoff, I don’t understand your question. (I don’t even understand your sentence.)

            N2 and O2 are not greenhouse gases.

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “But, as I said, the surface data agreed with the satellite data pre-Karlization.”

            I doubt it.

            The 30-yr trend of NOAA global surface from 6/1985 to 5/2015, just before Karl et al’s analysis, was 0.15 C/dec.

            The 30-yr trend of UAH v6.0beta2 for that time period is 0.11 C/decade.

            Both have error bars of about 0.02 C/decade (with no autocorrelation).

            And you’re overlooking the *huge* changes UAH also made to their data around that same time:

            http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2015/04/remarkable-changes-to-uah-data.html
            http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2015/04/some-big-adjustments-to-uahs-dataset.html

            In fact, the Karl et al changes were only about a third of the cha

          • David Appell says:

            …Meant to conclude by saying the UAH changes were about three times larger than the Karl changes:

            http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2015/06/noaas-data-changes-actually-smaller.html

          • Bart says:

            “-OK, we pick the one with the lowest trend, and discard the other one due to drifts.”

            What is your point? Your target is specifically UAH, but the difference between UAH and RSS is negligible, amounting to essentially a constant offset, which does not matter for diagnosing trends or any other variable behavior

            http://woodfortrees.org/plot/uah6/plot/rss/offset:-0.09

            You are trying to make a big deal out of a negligible difference in order to cast aspersions. Why are you doing this? What is your objective? Why do you feel your ends justify such dishonest means?

            “The 18 points are not carefully selected, it is the first try with a regular pattern…”

            A regular (by which I assume you mean uniformly distributed) pattern is, in fact, a careful selection. The surface data are not uniformly distributed.

            Again, for the zillionth time, the big difference between the surface sets and the satellite sets is that the former have been manipulated, in real time, right before our eyes. Prior to 2015, there was good agreement between all the temperature sets. Now, they are divergent. What changed? Fudges put in place by NOAA, that’s what.

            You must know this. You must know that you are arguing in favor of manipulating data to arrive at a preconceived answer. So, I must ask again, why are you doing this? What is your objective? Why do you feel your ends justify such dishonest means?

          • Scott says:

            David Appell says:
            January 4, 2017 at 10:03 AM

            All greenhouse gases consist of molecules with three atoms or more. Only they have the vibrational and rotational states whose transitions are in the infrared.

            I am so tired of seeing this egregiously incorrect notion repeated. Diatomic molecules CAN absorb IR radiation. The criterion for IR activity is a change in dipole moment of the molecule. This is sophomore-level undergrad stuff. Many courses probably even teach it at the freshmen level too. I certainly learned it at the age of no more than 20. Easily shown with a quick Google search for IR spectrum of carbon monoxide. In practice, heteronuclear diatomic molecules only have a small impact on the greenhouse effect because none of these species have a long atmospheric lifetime, but this is no excuse for incorrect statements like the above.

            It really bothers me that I’ve seen the above stated by so many AGWer’s. It’s like there’s some sort of talking-point list that they go to in order to get their information and never actually learned the fundamentals. What bothers me even more is that I’ve never seen an anti-AGWer ever refute this poor mistake. Seems like no one actually understands the fundamentals, they just memorize a bunch of talking points. Exactly like the majority of both academics and industrial STEM people…just all work off of memorization and don’t actually understand how the world works. This ends up with people knowing “science” by reading/regurgitating conclusions rather than actually understanding the data/analysis/assumptions. I swear that the number of STEM people that actually understand things, invent new stuff, don’t just memorize, etc is on the order of 5% or less. Outside of STEM that number might even be lower…

            Have a nice day,

            -Scott

          • Bart says:

            Maybe 10%, Scott. Sturgeon’s Law is very general, and applies in STEM fields as well as any other.

          • Ceist says:

            Carl Mears from RSS disagrees with you about errors and adjustments

            “Carl Mears, senior scientist for Remote Sensing Systems, told The Associated Press in an email: “The satellite measurements do not measure the surface warming. They are measurements of the average temperature of thick layers of the atmosphere” about 50,000 feet off the ground.”

            http://bigstory.ap.org/article/d77eaa1018554de2b3582917c84fa620/earths-temperature-depends-where-you-put-thermometer

            “For impacts on human society and the environment, the surface data are more important,” Mears said. Mears said his analysis of his own satellite data has five times the margin of error of ground measurements. That’s because satellites use complex mathematical algorithms and thousands of bits of code to translate wavelength measurements into temperature readings”

            Also: RSS Press release and their published paper on V4
            http://images.remss.com/papers/rsstech/Jan_5_2017_news_release.pdf

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            Scott…”The criterion for IR activity is a change in dipole moment of the molecule”.

            You are right that there’s a lot of misinformation about atoms/molecules.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            Ceist…”Carl Mears from RSS disagrees with you about errors and adjustments”

            Has it ever occurred to you that the guy who runs the site may be lying through his teeth and has intentionally misquoted Mears? AMSU units measure at different frequencies and one frequency band measures oxygen near the surface.

            He claimed Mears stated that in an email. Yeah…sure.

          • MarcT77 says:

            If different models were used to account for UHI, I wonder how much spread would be found among the different reconstructions from weather stations. Right now, satellite reconstructions consider everything that could affect measurements, therefore they have more temporal instability when better models come out. Weather station based reconstruction do not consider all the possibilities of contammination and they all use the homogenization technics, so they have a little bit more temporal stability.

            I wish there was at least one weather station reconstruction that would attempt to modelize how the diurnal temperature range should change with the increase in CO2 instead of using the homogenized value.

        • Dan Pangburn says:

          Har – “Considering no significant forcings other than greenhouse gases have been found” is not true. See http://irjes.com/Papers/vol5-issue11/E5113145.pdf

          • Adrian Roman says:

            It was an appeal to ignorance. It should be either ignored or ridiculed, one should not allow switching the burden of proof like that.

            Anyway, a dynamical system does not need a ‘forcing’ to change. What ‘forcing’ makes a double-pendulum flip?

          • Bart says:

            Exactly, Adrian. The massively coupled system driving the Earth’s climate has beaucoups mechanisms for storage and release of energy on extraordinarily long time scales. Far more than a relatively simple double pendulum. This argument from ignorance reveals only the ignorance of the people who promote it.

          • Harry Twinotter says:

            I stand by what I say, and I would not call the attribution evidence present in the IPCC AR5 report an “argument from ignorance”.

            Anyway I will let you dissenters spin your arguments as usual. Some other time.

          • Bart says:

            I don’t care if you stand on your head. It’s a dumb argument. If the IPCC is making it, that makes them ipso facto otnay ootay ightbray.

          • David Appell says:

            Adrian Roman says:
            “Anyway, a dynamical system does not need a forcing to change. What forcing makes a double-pendulum flip?”

            Start your double pendulum (or simple pendulum) and let it run without forcings. Eventually it will come to rest.

          • Bart says:

            “Eventually it will come to rest.”

            Not if it has an external power source, like say one of these gadgets”.

            The Earth’s climate has an external power source. We call it the Sun.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            DA…”Start your double pendulum (or simple pendulum) and let it run without forcings. Eventually it will come to rest.”

            Yes…due to the Mother of all Forces…gravity. I still call them forces, forcings coming from differential equation theory and representing fictitious forces.

          • Bart says:

            “Yesdue to the Mother of all Forcesgravity.”

            No, not gravity. Gravity is a conservative force. The culprit is friction, a negative feedback that dissipates energy, allowing the system to descend to its lowest energy state.

            Such negative feedbacks are endemic to the natural order of things – energy always wants to flee through any escape hole it can find. Which is why the notion of aggregate positive feedback from CO2 has always been speculative at best, and completely unsupported by the data.

            But, that’s beside the point. The point here is the Earth, like any complex system in the universe, has a wide spectrum of response modes that can be continually excited by random forcing, and produce non-intuitive behavior when one does not know what they are. Under such conditions, the hubris and utter fatuousness of trying to finger the culprit for observed warming by subtracting out known forcings, and assigning whatever is left to anthropogenic impropriety is sublime in its stupidity.

          • Geoff Wood says:

            Gravity produces most of the Universe’s entropy. It is the ‘Mother’ of spontaneous processes that follow.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            Adrian Roman “a dynamical system does not need a forcing to change. What forcing makes a double-pendulum flip?”

            You won’t find the term forcing used in physics. It’s a reference from forcing function as used in differential equation theory. Since differential equations are used in climate models, the modelers have dropped the function part and incorrectly tried to apply forcing as a real force in the real world.

            A forcing is a fictitious force that applies only to the fiction in a climate model.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            Dan Pangburn… from your paper…”The only way that energy can significantly leave earth is by thermal radiation. Only solid or liquid bodies and greenhouse gases(ghg) can absorb/emit in the wavelength range of terrestrial radiation. Non-ghg gases must transfer energy to ghg gases (or liquid or solid bodies) for this energy to be radiated”.

            Where’s the proof that nitrogen and oxygen cannot independently absorb and emit energy to space? Just asking.

            If that’s the case then neither N2 nor O2 will ever warm up or cool down other than through conduction. It is well know that both N2 and O2 both emit and absorb photons of EM.

            The ideal gas law states that PV = nRT. Or T = PV/nR. Therefore the gas temperature is proportional to the pressure with volume held constant or to the volume with pressure held constant. It also states that temperature is inversely proportional to the number of atoms in a volume.

            Therefore you can change the temperature of a gas by changing the volume, the pressure, or the number of atoms involved in a given volume. I am not making inferences from this but it’s obvious that matter as a gas can change temperature without radiation necessarily being emitted or absorbed as described for GHGs.

            If you have warmed N2 and O2 rising naturally to a higher altitude, as it rises it’s temperature will fall due to the lowered effect of gravity (change of pressure). Part of the reason for cooling is that there is less collisions between molecules. However, with reduced collisions how does the atom cool? It must obviously radiate away energy gained due to collisions.

            I am further positing that as N2 and O2 warm and rise to higher altitudes they have the capability of radiating energy to a cooler atmosphere. They may not do it at terrestrial IR frequencies but they have the ability to cool through radiation with no GHGs present or other solids or liquids.

            It needs to be understood that temperature and thermal energy require atoms. The less the number of atoms the lower the temperature. Therefore as you get higher in altitude and gases thin out the temperature drops. As a warmer gas at a lower altitude rises and thins it will cool naturally. N2 and O2 should cool naturally at higher altitudes by radiating away excess kinetic energy they gained from collisions at higher densities.

            To study that deeper, we’d have to examine at the atomic level why an atom cools. Certainly radiation of photons is one way, but why can’t N2 and O2 radiate photons? It’s not right to claim they can’t because they do. They do it at different frequencies than water vapour and CO2.

            Why an atom gains or loses kinetic energy, which is thermal energy is a complex problem. It involves all energy levels in an atom. I think AGW theory has simplified the problem till it has gotten stupid (see link below). There’s no reason why N2 or O2 cannot radiate energy to space at higher altitudes as well as CO2 or water vapour.

            If we are concerned only with terrestrial radiation then I get the point. However, 99%+ of the atmosphere is N2 and O2 and to claim they cannot absorb solar energy and emit to space seems incorrect.

            Atoms absorb energy based on the difference in energy between energy shells. Any EM suiting that difference will be absorbed. Other EM will be rejected.

            I am just posing the question. It seems to be accepted that the temperature of 99%+ of the atmosphere, made up of N2 and O2, has nothing to do with the N2 and O2, and that it can only warm and cool via GHGs.

            I think that’s somewhat absurd and this article poses some interesting questions.

            http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2010/02/the_hidden_flaw_in_greenhouse.html

          • Nate says:

            Gordon. That article is full of wrong science. And it has been debunked before. His idea that gases like n2 or o2 radiate or absorb in IR range is factually incorrect. IR from the earth measured above the atmosphere clearly shows where co2 and h2o absrbs it and the rest passes through.

          • Dan Pangburn says:

            Gor Gases absorb/emit at specific wavelengths. That is what makes spectroscopy work. N2 and O2 do not absorb/emit at wavelengths of significant terrestrial EMR (6-100 microns). how does the atom cool? does not have meaning. Atoms dont have temperature, they have velocity which causes temperature (molecular vibration) in walls they impact, like thermometers.

          • Geoff Wood says:

            1/2mv(mean)^2= 1/2kT per degree of freedom for a gas

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “Not if it has an external power source, like say one of these gadgets.”

            Then it has a forcing. The original point was involved a lack of forcings.

            http://www.drroyspencer.com/2017/01/global-satellites-2016-not-statistically-warmer-than-1998/#comment-232690

          • David Appell says:

            Gordon Robertson says:
            “A forcing is a fictitious force that applies only to the fiction in a climate model.”

            Nope. In climate science, a forcing is essentially an energy input to the system, usually measured in W/m2. Changes in solar irradiance are a forcing, just as are changes in GHGs and aerosols.

          • Bart says:

            “Then it has a forcing.”

            Of course it does. But, it does not have to be a clearly identifiable forcing. It can be something that happened long ago, and the response is only now fading. It can be something very small and/or random and easily overlooked that happens to excite a resonance. Assuming that something does not exist simply because you do not know about it leads to many false conclusions, and is the reason that argumentum ad ignorantiam has been catalogued as a fundamental logical fallacy since antiquity.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            Dan…”Atoms dont have temperature, they have velocity which causes temperature (molecular vibration) in walls they impact, like thermometers”.

            So, in a bar of pure iron, the temperature is decided by atomic velocities????

            It’s understood that no one can measure the temperature of an individual atom but in a gas the average kinetic energy of all the atoms/molecules is the temperature. If you removed all atoms from a container it would have no measurable temperature.

            If you wanted to be silly you could use Avogadro’s number on the estimated number of atoms to determine the average temperature of an individual atom.

            What I’m trying to say is this. If you know the temperature of a gas is the average kinetic energy of all atoms, then one atom must have a temperature. I don’t like the word temperature because it is a human invention based on the freezing point and boiling point of water. Temperature is a relative level of thermal energy. I prefer to think of the kinetic energy of atoms as being their thermal energy.

            The temperature of atoms is related to their kinetic energy and that is dependent on the energy states in which their electrons reside. When gas atoms/molecules collide it is the electrons absorbing energy that raises their KE hence their thermal energy.

            The only other ways an atom can absorb energy is through an electron absorbing EM and through interactions with sub-atomic particles.

            In a bar of pure iron, the iron atoms are bound by valence electrons and the atoms vibrate atom to atom. Some people have modeled them having springs between the atoms. When one end of the bar is heated by a torch, the transferred thermal energy is in turn transferred atom to atom via valence electrons, causing each atom to vibrate more in their covalent bonds.

            That vibration is heat and Clausius related the motion to work, heat and work being equivalent.

            Why they move and gain momentum in a gas is a mystery. However, their kinetic energies have already been determined by the distance their electrons have moved from ground state.

            Of course, no one really knows anything about this other than through crude experiments trying to verify the fudged math in quantum theory.

            I was just watching a film of a Feynman lecture. He freely admitted he knows nothing about the reality but I stayed with his math till he started getting ridiculous. I say ridiculous because he and others have had to introduce probability theory to the examination and when they do that, as Planck has admitted, the science can no longer be visualized.

            That’s what troubled Einstein and Schrodinger about quantum theory, that it was too far removed from observed reality.

          • Dan Pangburn says:

            Gor It never dawned on me that anyone here would not know I was talking about gas molecules as having velocity. As an engineer, I never argue with what works. Kinetic theory of gases works. It says gas atoms (above absolute zero) have velocity and it is expressed as temperature and pressure of the gas. I noticed you never mention pressure. This site has a calculator that relates all this stuff: http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/kinetic/frecol.html Feynman talks about the velocity of molecules giving rise to temperature and pressure in Volume 1, Chapter 1 of his lecture series. (Google Feynman lectures on physics) provided by Caltech.

            It works that gas atoms gain energy and momentum from the energy and momentum of the photons they absorb (and/or contact with vibrating atoms in container walls). I suspect that the observation that gas molecules absorb photons (of appropriate wavelength) has something to do with the equivalence of mass and energy, but IMO I really dont need to know that to research the cause of climate change.

            I enjoyed physics and probably would have gone that way but the pragmatist in me thought I would do better as an engineer (applying physics for the benefit of man). I sometimes quote, or paraphrase Feynman and have seen some of his lectures on line.

            I had a great career working on, among other things, rockets, satellites (including AMSU), nuclear power, even smart artillery projectiles.

            Digging deeper into physics and a smidgeon of QM has been interesting. I have not yet found anything credible that refutes my findings and my assessment does a convincing job of matching observations for all the years of reasonably accurate reported average global temperature measurements.

        • Bart says:

          Maybe 10%, Scott. Sturgeon’s Law is very general, and applies in STEM fields as in just about any other 😉

      • Dr. Roy, based on an observed warming to date of 0.9K, a trend rate of 0.12K per decade would lead to an aggregate warming of about 1.94K by 2100. I notice that you make no mention of whether your 50% comparison is statistically significant in its own right, and given the shortness of the period in the satellite record I suspect that it is within expected deviation from the models. We can certainly say that based on the trend rate from your own data set, the 2K target by end of century will be very close to being exceeded even given that the warming rate does not rise.

        Perhaps we should allow that a moment to sink in. Three, two one…

        That is to say, that if we were to stop adding CO2e to the atmosphere today, then the warming being produced by the gases already in the atmosphere, without adjusting for decay in the concentrations, would put us very close indeed to the RPC6.0 scenario’s outcome. That is a medium-emissions outcome, whereas stopping emissions tomorrow would be a very low emissions scenario. So it looks as if the model results are actually being exceeded to me. Reading off the graph, however (see link), the trend rate looks just about right to my eye.

        Can you point us to model results which show a trend rate of twice 0.12K/decade in 2016? This seems to be an important assertion and I would like to know that we are talking about the same set of predictions.

        https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2016-07/scenariotempgraph_0.jpg

        • Robert Austin says:

          “Three, two one”
          How’s about waiting for the present El Nino to finish before making conclusions about trends Dr. Spenser’s data set.

        • Bart says:

          “Dr. Roy, based on an observed warming to date of 0.9K, a trend rate of 0.12K per decade would lead to an aggregate warming of about 1.94K by 2100.”

          You might want to check that math, given that there are only about 8.3 decades left until 2100.

          • FTOP says:

            Better yet, from El Nio to El Nio we have 17 years and .02. This represents peak warming in the 30+ year satellite record.

            Since it is warming that we are worried about, we should use these peaks to extrapolate.

            That is .0117 per decade so in 8.3 decades we should see .09 warming creating an anomaly of .59. Sounds catastrophic to me. /sarc

          • 0.91 + 0.0123894408 * 83 = 1.9383235864 ~= 1.94

            Where problem?

          • “This represents peak warming in the 30+ year satellite record.”

            Of course it does. Arf.

          • Bart says:

            I see. So, you extrapolated a linear trend out to 2100, then compared it to a scenario in which the slope declines over time (light blue line), and pronounced them in agreement? Mmm… no.

            You surely aren’t referring to the gold line, as that one clearly has a slope of about 0.24 degC/decade, which is double the trend line slope over the entire data record.

            My advice – temperatures are currently plummeting with the end of the El Nino. Wait a year, and see if you think there is still a uniform trend.

        • David Appell says:

          There is no scientific reason to linearly extrapolate 40 yr of UAH data to 2100, due to positive feedbacks expected this century.

          • Bart says:

            Yes, those elusive positive feedbacks that have utterly failed to rear their heads. Sneaky little devils.

          • JasG says:

            There is no justification for anything worse than linear extrapolation given that the rate of warming has been steadily reducing for 30 years while the rate of CO2 emissions has increased in the same period because a) the much vaunted but little proven positive feedbacks either are not there or were overcome by unexpected natural mechanisms. If the former then the warming will be the unalarming & beneficial no-feedback value of 1K/century, if the latter then warming prior to the 1998 shift was likely natural too. Nobody now should expect anything.

            With the abject failure of the climate models (which were never fit for the purpose anyway) there is no scientific case for any manmade warming whatsoever. In a less ideologically-motivated field of science the entire effort would have been defunded by now.

          • Gordon Robertson says:

            DA…”There is no scientific reason to linearly extrapolate 40 yr of UAH data to 2100, due to positive feedbacks expected this century”.

            You don’t have a clue what a positive feedback is. And, you are talking around the subject which is that 2016 is not warmer than 1998 by enough to talk about.

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “Yes, those elusive positive feedbacks that have utterly failed to rear their heads. Sneaky little devils.”

            The water vapor feedback is certainly real, and it’s been observed:

            IPCC 5AR WG1 Ch2 Figs 2.30 & 2.31 documents positive trends in water vapor in multiple datasets.

            “Attribution of observed surface humidity changes to human influence,”
            Katharine M. Willett et al, Nature Vol 449| 11 October 2007| doi:10.1038/nature06207.
            http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v449/n7163/abs/nature06207.html

            “Identification of human-induced changes in atmospheric moisture content,” B. D. Santer et al, PNAS 2013.
            http://www.pnas.org/content/104/39/15248.abstract

            “How much more rain will global warming bring?” F.J. Wentz, Science (2007), 317, 233235.
            http://www.sciencemag.org/content/317/5835/233

          • David Appell says:

            The Arctic ice-albedo feedback has been found too:

            “Observational determination of albedo decrease caused by vanishing Arctic sea ice,”
            Kristina Pistone et al, PNAS v111 n9 pp 3322-3326 (2014).
            http://www.pnas.org/content/111/9/3322.abstract

          • Bart says:

            GIGO studies using models do not confirm positive water vapor feedback, David. What would confirm it would be temperatures rising relentlessly. But, they aren’t. At the current rate they are plunging, we will be back to pre-2000 levels within a few months.

          • Bart says:

            “What would confirm it would be temperatures rising relentlessly.”

            I should have said, a necessary condition to confirm it would be… Confirmation requires sufficiency as well.

          • “There is no scientific reason to linearly extrapolate 40 yr of UAH data to 2100, due to positive feedbacks expected this century.”

            Entirely true. If you have a better way to estimate what the current rate ought to be, go right ahead. Personally, I’d like to see what the models previously predicted for the rates measurable at the end of 2016, but the linear rate is a starting point,

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “GIGO studies using models do not confirm positive water vapor feedback, David.”

            Your excuses are pathetic. You’re a conspiracy theorist. Any result you like is fine, and any you don’t like is because scientists commit fraud or input garbage.

            And you think that’s convincing? It’s pathetic and it’s lazy and it demonstrates little knowledge.

            You aren’t the only honest person in the world, and you have no idea of the quality of data these professional scientists put into their calculations.

            You’re the best example of a pure denier that I’ve come across in a long time.

          • Bart says:

            It’s not a conspiracy theory when they’re doing it right in front of you. Sorry. The climate establishment already blew their credibility. You won’t get it back. Maybe you should read some Aesop’s fables for enlightenment.

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “Its not a conspiracy theory when theyre doing it right in front of you.”

            Said with no evidence presented whatsoever. As always.

            You’re not qualified to judge the credibility of the climate establishment.

            (And I’m not a part of it.)

          • David Appell says:

            BTW, Bart, why are the input data used in the water vapor studies “garbage.” Specifically.

          • Bart says:

            Putting me to sleep. Straw men are boring.

        • Gordon Robertson says:

          Eliott…”Dr. Roy, based on an observed warming to date of 0.9K, a trend rate of 0.12K per decade would lead to an aggregate warming of about 1.94K by 2100″.

          The 0.12C/decade trend was derived largely from a recovery from cooling prior to the 1998 El Nino. Show me a 0.12C/decade trend from 1998 – 2015.

          The IPCC has already admitted there was no significant trend (could have been cooling according to error margins) from 1998 – 2012. We’ve had 18 years with no significant trend, how do you plan to turn that into 0.12C/decade?

          • barry says:

            Use. All. The. Data.

            Doing that gives a statistically significant result. Using the data from 1998 to 2012 gives you no result that can be relied on. Not flat, not cooling, not warming.

          • Bart says:

            “Use. All. The. Data.”

            Wrong. Fitting a linear trend to the full set of data is imposing a model of steadily changing temperature upon the data. This is not a stationary system. It is time varying with unknown correlation times, but very likely much longer than the available data record.

            For instance if, as it appears, there is a strong ~60 year cyclical correlation in the system, then 30 years is the worst possible interval to choose to divine properties, because the result will be influenced in the opposite direction in the succeeding 30 year time interval.

            There is nothing wrong with using a shortened data set to give an indication of where things are going. You just have to be cautious about drawing conclusions.

            “Doing that gives a statistically significant result.”

            No, it doesn’t. In order to test for statistical significance, you must have a valid statistical model. Pathetic attempts at divining statistical significance typically assume an AR(1) model, with no prior justification. In fact, the data are very likely at least 2nd order correlated.

          • “The 0.12C/decade trend was derived largely from a recovery from cooling prior to the 1998 El Nino. Show me a 0.12C/decade trend from 1998 2015.”

            It’s the linear trend rate for the entire data set. If you use an exponential fit, for instance, you get a slightly higher rate at the end. I’d be delighted to see ANY method that can yield a fit for the whole data set that does not show unambiguous warming.

          • Ceist says:

            . Gordon Robertson says:
            January 6, 2017 at 4:38 AM
            CeistCarl Mears from RSS disagrees with you about errors and adjustments

            Has it ever occurred to you that the guy who runs the site may be lying through his teeth and has intentionally misquoted Mears? AMSU units measure at different frequencies and one frequency band measures oxygen near the surface.

            He claimed Mears stated that in an email. Yeahsure.

            Gordon, Carl Mears says the same thing in a video interview. Why do you automatically assume someone is lying just because you don’t like what they say?

            Here’s an interview with Carl Mears
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8BnkI5vqr_0

          • barry says:

            Wrong. Fitting a linear trend to the full set of data is imposing a model of steadily changing temperature upon the data.

            Skeptics use only linear trend models for the shorter period since 1998. On that basis it does not achieve statistical significance (which is a main point in the OP on a different matter). But statistical significance is achieved with a linear model for the full period by a wide margin. What we can say with great confidence is that overall, warming has occurred over the period. We cannot say anything about temp trends since 1998.

            This is not a stationary system. It is time varying with unknown correlation times, but very likely much longer than the available data record.

            And I’m sure you’ve made this point when a skeptic emphasises the even shorter period from 1998. Right?

            (Answer that question honestly in your own mind. See what you come up with)

            There is nothing wrong with using a shortened data set to give an indication of where things are going. You just have to be cautious about drawing conclusions.

            Too short data sets give little indication. If the slope is near zero, for example, and the uncertainty is +/- 5, then you have no call saying anything about the trend whatsoever. The uncertainty overwhelms any indication.

            Doing that gives a statistically significant result.

            No, it doesnt.

            Yes, it does.

            In order to test for statistical significance, you must have a valid statistical model. Pathetic attempts at divining statistical significance typically assume an AR(1) model, with no prior justification. In fact, the data are very likely at least 2nd order correlated.

            Well ante up, my friend.

            Apply a good statistical model to the data and explain whether and how it indicates a trend.

        • cb750 says:

          You can’t merely draw a line through data points and make an assumption about something in 100 years.

          • “You cant merely draw a line through data points and make an assumption about something in 100 years.”

            You certainly can’t. That’s what the models are for. Hence, I would like to see what trend rate they predicted for the period covered by Dr. Roy’s data. The linear trend extrapolation simply serves to show that the current rates are about right for the simplest conceivable scenario.

      • Greven says:

        Shame UAH5.6 won’t be out for awhile.

        Let’s plugin UAH6.0 for December instead to see how different the two datasets are!

        _UAH_5.6_
        1998 (J-D): +0.42
        2016 (J-N): +0.60

        _UAH_6.0_
        1998 (J-D): +0.48
        2016 (J-D): +0.50

        _UAH_5.6_PLUS_DEC_6.0
        1998 (J-D): +0.42
        2016 (J-N): +0.57

        Gee I wonder what the lower stratosphere looks like… oh I guess there aren’t numbers for December there yet.

        _UAH_5.6_
        1998 (J-D): -0.29
        2016 (J-N): -0.52

        _UAH_6.0_
        1998 (J-D): -0.25
        2016 (J-N): -0.53

        Hmm… quite the cooling trend!

        • Greven says:

          I wonder – hey Dr. Spencer, since you support greenhouse theory… given that total solar irradiance hasn’t appreciably changed, and that TMT & the Tropopause haven’t warned nearly enough to offset the difference:

          Why are 1998 TLT & TLS so unbalanced compared to 2016?

        • Greven says:

          Oh hey UAH 5.6 updated.
          v5.6 Dec 2016 is +0.14 higher than the v6.0 Dec 2016.

          Also, Arctic shows as +0.55 for v5.6 Dec 2016 compared with -0.00 for v6.0 Dec 2016.

          Which is really weird, given that the Arctic was so very warm during December and got above freezing at least in one recording.

          Your data methodology is flawed, Dr. Spencer.

      • cb750 says:

        Can I ask you Dr. Spencer have you considered the process of averaging temp data to actually detrimental to the process of understanding climate? Averages hide anomalies.

        50,50,50,50 avg = 50.

        110,-10,40,60 avg = 50.

        Which data set is an issue? I would imagine averaging the earth’s temps hides anomalies we should be concerned about. Warming won’t happen on a global scale, it will happen locally. And statistically you don’t average unrelated items. Should Britain’s temps be averaged with Argentina’s? Does that even mean anything?

      • But doesn’t your method largely ignore ocean temperatures ? And aren’t ocean temperatures a major factor for analysing weather and climate ? 2016 was still statistically the hottest year on record by your measurements, and the trend is unmistakable.

      • Christopher Winter says:

        In your view, Dr. Spencer, does “ocean acidification” mean what most people think it means?

    • Richard M says:

      Harry, the entire period is parallel to the warming phase of the 60-70 year AMO cycle. What happens to the trend when the AMO warming is removed? Chances are it looks a lot like the cooling from 1945-1980.

      What’s more interesting is pretty much all the warming from the El Nino is now gone. Vanished. Why all the pushing of warming by the media in the last couple of years when it was all just weather?

      It would seem a bigger question is when will the pause return and if it does what does that do to your views on AGW.

      • Harry Twinotter says:

        You ask a lot of rhetorical questions I think. Perhaps you can gather your data and post an article somewhere.

        “It would seem a bigger question is when will the pause return and if it does what does that do to your views on AGW.”

        Silly comment – my views will not change anything. And neither will yours.

        • Richard M says:

          The data speaks for itself. I was just curious if your opinion was driven by data. It doesn’t appear like it is. That would seem to indicate your views are religious in nature.

          • Harry Twinotter says:

            “religious in nature.”

            No, I leave religion to the signatories of the Cornwall Declaration. I stick to science.

        • Gordon Robertson says:

          Harry..”Silly comment my views will not change anything. And neither will yours.”

          Hopefully we are talking about data, which is right in front of you on the graph above. The IPCC declared 1998 – 2012 as a ‘warming hiatus’. If you can’t see the hiatus during that period you won’t recognize it even if the running average continues to drop and averages out the current EN warming.

          Many people commenting on this blog are in total denial regarding that hiatus even though their gods at the IPCC have admitted to it.

          NOAA, under the guidance of the Obama administration has tried to erase the hiatus retroactively using scientific misconduct.

    • Nate says:

      Three cheers for insignificance!

      Some alternative headlines with significance*:

      Record warmest two year period: .14 higher

      Record warmest three year period: .12 higher

      Record warmest four year period: .10 higher

      * consecutive calendar years, non-overlapping

    • Gordon Robertson says:

      Harry…”The chart clearly shows a global warming trend, especially the 5 year average.”

      Harry…look back to 1998 and see what became of that running average the following year, and for the next 18 years. There’s not enough data in yet to see where the running average is going.

  3. Bryan says:

    Thermometers claiming to measure to 1/100 th of a degree?

    Would this anomaly be written as

    0.05 ( + or -) 0.001 degree Celsius ?

  4. Harry Twinotter says:

    Don’t you think the headline is dishonest – why didn’t you say 2016 Warmest Year on Record?

    • because, as I said, they are basically tied, statistically. So to say 2016 is the warmest would be dishonest, since it ignores uncertainty in the measurements: a 0.02 deg. C change over 18 years cannot be reliably measured with any of our temperature monitoring systems.

      • Kevin says:

        Just say “2016 Likely Warmest Year on Record” which would incorporate both the fact that the measurements have 2016 ahead of ’98 but not with certainty.

        • argus says:

          The more I think about it, the more I find Dr Spencer’s headline appropriate. The cooling in December is a pretty big event, and with NASA and others saying for months and months that 2016 would be the hottest year on record, it turns out, statistically, it ends indistinguishable from a previous strong el nino year. His headline may leave super warmers wanting, but it’s certainly not dishonest.

          • MarkB says:

            Assuming you’re referring to Gavin Schmidt’s projections and are genuinely interested in being fair, he’s clearly shown analysis using the GISS LOTI surface temperature data set.

          • John says:

            Although I agree they were different datasets, that to me is all the more puzzling. If you think about how the greenhouse effect is supposed to work, there isn’t a margin for the surface to warm and not the lower tropospheric temperature. All be it, both warmed in this case, but not at the same rate. If anything, the lower tropospheric temperature should show the warming prior to the surface. That leaves 3 possible conclusions.

            1. The method of distinguishing the lower tropospheric temperature is wrong.
            2. There is something wrong with how the surface temperature is measured (then maybe adjusted.
            3. Not enough surface sites to reflect the real climate.

            Of course, it doesn’t even need to be just one of those, it could be all three or it could be two.

            I really hope scientific spending is switched from models to measurements in the near future, as measurements appear to be woefully lacking and until it is solved, the question continues.

        • Ric Werme says:

          I think you could say “likely warmest” if there were only two years with any chance of being the warmest. That may be the case given how far back 2010 and the cluster headed by 2015 are.

          Suppose there was another year that matched 1998, then 2016 could have a 40% chance of being the warmest and each of the other two could have a 30% chance. I.e. 2016 would not likely be the warmest year, one of the other two would be.

          Didn’t Gavin and GISS have to backtrack on a claim that 2015 was the warmest year?

      • I have to agree with Harry here, Dr. Roy. After spending several months adding entirely spurious data points to your graphs to show how unlikely it is that a record will be set, your graph now shows that a record has been set. (You also pointed out at one juncture that just comparing the two peaks would say more about the relative sizes of two el Nino events, I might add.) Now a record has been set and you are not saying, “A record has been set,” or “I was wrong, a record has been set after all.” Instead you are using language designed to give the impression that setting a record is not actually that important after all.

        Technically very true. But it doesn’t look especially ingenuous.

        • Richard M says:

          If everything else was equal it might be useful to note a record. However, with the AMO driving far more Arctic warming it is likely not a record if that effect was removed.

          I wonder what data looks if you removed the Arctic?

          • I wonder why one would want to remove the Arctic?

          • TheFinalNail says:

            “I wonder what data looks if you removed the Arctic?”

            Quite right, Richard M. Let’s remove the Arctic and thus reduce global warming.

            TFN

          • Richard M says:

            Eliott, the AMO is a known long term cycle. If we want to understand the real long term trend in global temperatures (and have some chance to understand the effect of CO2 increases) we must remove other factors which influence temperature over shorter periods. Maybe you don’t want to know the trend?

          • ” we must remove other factors which influence temperature over shorter periods”

            Just removing the region that is warming the fastest – and is predicted to warm fastest – seems a very poor way of doing this. Normally one would correct for the cycle and/or look for further lines of evidence.

        • can I remind you of what I said in the last monthly update?:

          “It should be pointed out that 2016 will end up being 0.03-0.04 deg. C warmer than 1998, which is probably not a statistically significant difference given the uncertainties in the satellite dataset adjustments.”

          But rather than my prediction that 2016 would be 0.03-0.04 C warming, it’s now only 0.02 C warmer. So, I think I’m being consistent.

          • sod says:

            “But rather than my prediction that 2016 would be 0.03-0.04 C warming, its now only 0.02 C warmer. So, I think Im being consistent.”

            Does not look consistent to me, rather biased. You were hoping for no record, so you started to downplay the record before it even occured.

          • He made one little mistake! So what? Our government has made numerous mistakes through the century using terms like global cooling in the 70s. Global warming in the 80s and last but not least climate change to start the 21st century simply because the climate is changing so they didn’t want to embarrass themselves for the past 19 years saying that the earth is warming when the really is none. Even if it is 0.04 degrees C warmer does they really matter. We’re talking about a number less then 0. Not just 0 but less do you realize how small that is. And it’s not like a string of record warm years were broken over the past 19 years like the MSM claims! If that were true i wouldn’t be saying this but it isn’t. 2016 just happened to be warmer then 1998 by 0.04 degrees not one thousand degrees but 0.04 degrees. Face it your man made climate change agenda is going down the drain!

          • Sods mother says:

            Sod, did you remember to take your meds today honey?

          • “So, I think Im being consistent.”

            Well, perhaps. We generally find ourselves to be consistent. I think by the time the November datum appeared it was pretty obvious that a sufficient drop was not likely to appear to prevent a record being set, so this appears to be hedging your bets after the fact, but I could be being unfair. But as I also said a few months ago, I always find the obsession with calendar years a bit odd anyway. I wouldn’t make so much of them, myself.

            As a matter of interest, just how large would the increment have to be to become statistically significant for that period in that dataset anyway? I suspect, and may try to calculate tomorrow if I am feeling sufficiently compost mentis, that it would represent a trend rate higher than we could possibly have cause to expect. You said yourself that the peak-to-peak interval tells us more about the size of the el Nino events than about the underlying trend. It is basically only two data points, closer together than the IPCC’s definitional period of 30 years for “climate”.

            As the trend rate over 18 years would yield an underlying increment of about 0.2K, and given that the trend rate comes from the very same data set, I would surmise that the observed increment of 0.02K is also not statistically significantly different to the expected increment of 0.2K. Which would translate into English as meaning that this small record does not falsify the existence of the trend.

          • Bart says:

            “But as I also said a few months ago, I always find the obsession with calendar years a bit odd anyway.”

            Given that temperatures have plunged exceedingly rapidly in the past few months, and this is likely to continue, I am curious if you really mean this.

            The handwriting is pretty much on the wall. So, while you quibble here and now, you must surely know that any minor victory you might score is going to be totally wiped away in the very near future.

            Are you hoping and praying that the nosedive will abate, and you will be able to claim vindication? Surely, you realize the tenuousness of your perch?

          • “Given that temperatures have plunged exceedingly rapidly in the past few months”

            They always do immediately after a strong el Nino. The overall trend rate is rising. As usual. A few months don’t count for much of anything. At the very least you need a multi-year trend, and much below 30 years is meaningless for purposes of plotting climate. Hence the low statistical significance.

          • Bart says:

            The overall trend rate is rising, as it has been for over 100 years, long before CO2 could have been an issue.

          • Bart says:

            For some reason, a filter is not allowing my longer, more explanatory, comment to go through. Bottom line is, there is nothing new or alarming going on.

      • David Appell says:

        Roy, the two years aren’t “basically tied.” Or “tied.” One is warmer than the other. T(2016) +/- 0.10 C is warmer than T(1998) +/- 0.10.

        I think you’re spinning this hard in order to get the headlines you want.

        • Greven says:

          What you mean he didn’t do that between v5.6 and v6.0?

        • barry says:

          I see comments like this from ‘skeptics’ all the time. Claiming mendacity with no evidence whatsoever. But this time it’s from the other side of the fence, and just as deplorable.

    • sod says:

      We will see how future cooling we be handed. “insignificanrt cooling trend”.

      So has anyone tested how many of the “record colds” that were mentioned in a recent post were in fact ties?

      http://www.drroyspencer.com/2016/12/first-week-of-2017-record-cold-48-states-going-below-freezing/

      Or are ties only interesting when they fit opinions?

  5. Bryan says:

    correction

    0.05 ( + or -) 0.001 degree Celsius ? should be

    0.050 ( + or -) 0.01 degree Celsius ?

  6. Emeritus says:

    Dr. Spencer, what is the difference between 1998 and 2016 with v5.6?

    • Haven’t calculated it yet.

      • Olof R says:

        It will be way larger than 0.10 C, actually closer to 0.2, with other words significant…

        • Emeritus says:

          That was my assumption as well. Large portions of this blog and comments is about if 0,02 is significant or not.

          Dr. Spencer has been forthright regarding that the headline in this blog is a spin. The “warmest year on record” can make a false impression. And I think we all can agree that this matter is of some consequence .

          I find it quiet astonishing that these decisions is made solely by a couple of men without the insight Steven Mosher is asking for another place on this blogpost, and that even before the v6.0 paper is published.

        • Bart says:

          But, with very significantly less breadth.

  7. Oh how the tables have turned. Lmao

    • argus says:

      I believe in the theory of global warming, but were I a bigger proponent, I would feel my position hurt substantially comparing ’98 to ’16, that a strong el nino almost 20 years later is indecipherable. I would feel the “pause” as having gained a lot of traction. Of course the next year or two will tell.

    • There go the puny minded warmest bickering over a teeny tiny 0.02C degree warmer then 1998. turning something so little into to something SO CATOSTROPHIC!!

      • Lewis says:

        Cato strophic? This then is the type picking we see here.
        Dr. Spencer is kind enough to host this blog. He offers observations and opinions. Others, whom we shall not rename, pick on him for his observations. How cute.

        His opinions do not toe a particular line, he, belonging to the lukewarmer church of CO2, is chastised nay, persecuted, for being a non-believer in the true religion.

        In all, I find much of the bickering petty. Of 5th to 8th grade level.

        The facts are simply. Dr. Spencer’s opinions are also simple, as are many who come here, but not all. The earth gets warmer and colder, we are not sure of all the imputs. But, if you are a AGW CO2 true believer, any minor chance to denigrate those who don’t believe is required.

        Bah. Grow up. We can’t control the weather. Warmer is better than colder. Hopefully, CO2 will help the planet avoid the depths of another ice age.

  8. Elliott Bignell says:

    What took you so long? 3rd of January already? A few too many caipirinhas at the fireworks display?

    Happy New Year, Dr. Roy.

  9. Bryan says:

    01 2016 +0.50
    02 1998 +0.48

    Difference = 0.02 ( + or -) 0.01 degree Celsius ?

    Thats just the reading error on a digital meter(plus or minus the last unit claimed)

    What about all the other errors or noise?

  10. OleKlemsdal says:

    Thank you again for interesting data!
    When comparing 1998 and 2016 I find it interesting that the anomaly averages the first quarters (jan, feb, mar) were 0,53 and 0,70 respectively, while the average anomaly the last 9 months were 0,46 and 0,44. Hence, despite a strong la Nina in the autumn of 1998, the last 3 quarters of 1998 were marginally warmer than 2016. Is this due to differences between the Nino episodes, and where does that lead us in to a likely year anomaly for 2017?

    • Richard M says:

      The loss of ice in the Arctic has a much more significant effect on global temperatures in the winter. This AMO driven ice loss is most likely the entire reason for 2016 being close to 1998.

      If the effects of the AMO are removed it is likely 1998 would be by far the warmer than 2016 and 1998 was even transitioning over to La Nina the last couple of months.

      • OleKlemsdal says:

        Yes, AMO quite likely plays a role here. The bottom line, I guess, is that natural factors appear increasingly important and CO2-mediated warming less dramatic than most of the worlds politicians have been convinced to believe.

  11. FTOP says:

    It is interesting how a report can be described by many different headlines. This post could be titled accurately in numerous ways depending on author bias.

    Realist & Statistition, aka, Dr. Spencer
    “2016 Not Statistically warmer than 1998”

    Warmist
    “2016 Likely Breaks Record in Satellite Era,”

    Null Hypothesist
    “2016 ends with Lowest warmth Recoded in last 20 Months”

    At the end of the day, it appears global temperatures are stubbornly stable and trend towards a mean. Remove volcanic cooling and Nino events which have nothing to do with “Mann” and you have a system that regulates itself quite well.

    • yes, that’s true. It’s an indication of how we can state something in simple terms which is technically true, but the reader then infers something of greater significance from it.

      For example, the statement, “global warming is real”. Which I agree with. But what I mean by it is probably quite different from what most readers of that statement infer from it.

      I decided on the wording for the current post as a counterpoint to the inevitable headlines like “OMG 2016-Warmest-On-Record-We’re-All-Gonna-Die!”

      • J says:

        Thank you for being so sane, Roy. And Happy New Year.

      • barry says:

        I decided on the wording for the current post as a counterpoint to the inevitable headlines like OMG 2016-Warmest-On-Record-Were-All-Gonna-Die!

        Hyperbole or oracular? The surface records are likely to have a statistically significant record warm year, so let’s hunt those headlines down.

        “2016 ‘hottest on record’ in new sign of global warming, Copernicus organisation says” (Oz ABC)

        “Hottest Year Ever? 2016 Burns Through Heat Records, NASA Says” (Live Science)

        ‘A new sign’ is pretty temperate (pun intended). ‘Burns through heat records’ is a little breathless.

        “2016 Edges 1998 as Warmest Year on Record” (Science Daily)

        “Scientists Say 2016 Is Hottest Year Ever Recorded” (EcoWatch)

        A dearth of alarmism in the headlines so far. But the official results haven’t been released, so maybe the press is saving it up for a week or two.

      • barry says:

        Wait, I found one!

        “Earth ‘On the Edge’ as Disastrous 2016 Goes Down as Hottest Year on Record” (Common Dreams)

        Well done, Dr Spencer, for providing balance against the raging onslaught of headlines.

  12. Tim Wells says:

    We probably have a 10% effect on the temperature of the world, while nature has a 90% dominating effect. We have no plan for a significantly cooling world, which will result in a lower crop production.

    • FTOP says:

      We probably have 0% effect on the temperature of the world. We have a meadurable effect on localized temperatures due to urbanization which changes the latent heat capacity of a localized area.

      The sun represents 99.85% of all mass in the solar system.
      http://solarviews.com/eng/solarsys.htm

      The ocean represents 70% of the earth’s surface and according to the global warmists 91-93% of the measured warming we should be afraid of is happening in the ocean.

      Anyone who thinks we can burn a fossil fuel in Wichita and warm an ocean is delusional.

      It is that big orange ball in the sky warming the ocean and the ocean releasing that energy (El Nino) or not (La Nina).
      https://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2015/08/26/climate-models-fail-global-ocean-heat-content-based-on-toa-energy-imbalance/

      All the rest is just noise.

      • We do have a tiny bit of an affect. No doubt about that. But the alarmist turn it into an affect that’s so catostrophic it’s going to kill us all!

        • Olof R says:

          If we continue to release 10 Gt C per year in the atmosphere for another 1000 years, we would be able to recreate the Permian-Triassic extinction event. That would be exiting…

          • FTOP says:

            If continued cooling reduces ocean out gassing, we could see CO2 levels below 300 ppm. We are at much greater risk of an ELE from low CO2 (.04%) than marginal increases.

          • Sods mother says:

            “If we continue to release 10 Gt C per year in the atmosphere for another 1000 years, we would be able to recreate the Permian-Triassic extinction event. That would be exiting”

            Yes, except, we will be way out of fossil fuels way before then! The predicted life of natural gas and oil is another 50 years while coal is another 100 years yet coal only makes up 25% of all our fossil fuels. But yes I agree with what your saying. If fossil fuels somehow do continue it could become a problem thousands of years down the road.

          • I apologize for the confusion.

          • Either way the climate will continue to change even if co2 emissions were still increasing from man made fossil fuels thousands of years from now except the ice ages will be milder and the warming periods will be hotter.

          • “If continued cooling reduces ocean out gassing”

            “Continued?” Do you perhaps not realise that most of current sea-level rise is due to thermal expansion?

            “Yes, except, we will be way out of fossil fuels way before then!”

            Perhaps not out of cement or soil. Fossil-fuel emissions are less then these two combined.

          • Fossil fuels. Does that name mean ANYTHING to you? They are FOSSIL fuels for a reason. Do your homework.

        • “No doubt about that. But the alarmist turn it into an affect thats so catostrophic its going to kill us all!”

          150,000 per annum so far, according to the WHO.

          http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v438/n7066/full/nature04188.html

          • Lol. That doesn’t matter. Co2 makes up only 0.04 % of the atmosphere and makes up only 5% of the total greenhouse affect. Even one hundred thousand million tons won’t do shit. In fact co2 is a plant fertilizer. If we choose to eliminate total co2 emissions we I’ll be dangerously close to killing all the plants on the planet . It benefits us much better then destroys us. Simple elementary school science.

  13. sod says:

    “Global Satellites: 2016 not Statistically Warmer than 1998”

    Most misleading headline ever. Posted on a blog that lately had a topic named:

    “Science Under President Trump: End the Bias in Government-Funded Research”

    But hey, nothing that a few adjustments can not fix? Next version will have 1998 warmer again, promise?

    • sod says:

      The world is discussing fake news and then we get this from one of the most respected scientist on the sceptic side. I am really dissapointed.

      What would that 3rd order polynomial do these days?

      https://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/03/02/uah-global-temperature-anomaly-still-below-the-zero-line/

    • Richard M says:

      Sounds like you are in denial and moving slowly into anger. Why does anyone care about the headline. The real issue is the data. The data now clearly shows no warming over the past couple of decades.

      What should really concern you is we now are seeing the maximum effect of the AMO cycle. It should be warmer than 1998 and yet it isn’t.

      • sod says:

        “What should really concern you is we now are seeing the maximum effect of the AMO cycle. It should be warmer than 1998 and yet it isnt.”

        it is warmer. Look at the numbers.

        Only if you do not weant it to be warmer, you start using the “statistical tie” nonsense.

        Your kids didn t grow last year. It a statistical tie with the number you got last month!

        • Richard M says:

          Obviously, you are not a scientist or you would understand what measurement error means. Why are you at a science site denying basic statistics?

        • oh, and your child growing analogy? If you don’t realize what’s wrong with it, I can’t help you.

          (Hint: All children grow with time, not shrink. But not all temperatures trend upwards.)

          • sod says:

            “(Hint: All children grow with time, not shrink. But not all temperatures trend upwards.)”

            This is wrong. Everybody shrinks every day.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pawmi-StB94

            And we have to include measuring errors, of course.

            You are also confusing stuff that we are going to measure (is the kid still growing) with some baseless claim (not all kids grow).

      • David Appell says:

        Richard, Roy wrote this headline knowing full well it would lead many forums — like Brietbart, the Daily Caller, etc — to report it the way he spun it.

        • spalding craft says:

          Gimme a break. You really think Roy cares what Breitbart and Daily Caller report? Roy is not a politician or a propagandizer.

    • “Most misleading headline ever”?

      Really?

      actually, in so few words, my headline is very accurate, and not misleading at all, sod. It makes a very important point…which probably would apply to the thermometer measurements as well….but good luck getting those guys to admit it.

      • sod says:

        “actually, in so few words, my headline is very accurate, and not misleading at all, sod. It makes a very important pointwhich probably would apply to the thermometer measurements as well.but good luck getting those guys to admit it.”

        It is not accurate, unless you also start calling cold records (you made a post about those lately) “tie”.

        It is a trick to make the record less relevant. You would not have called the record “significantly strong” if it had been above the “tie” threshold.

  14. SPQR says:

    From 1979 to the present, there is an upward trend on the graph. The graph does not begin in 1998. So what if 2016 was a record year? I think both sides (liberal and conservative) tinker with the data (liberals probably far more).

    However, even if there is slight warming (which it appears) I am not going to cease using my air-conditioner in the summer; Nor am I going to stop driving my car or cutting my lawn.

    Get over it people-

  15. Wim Rost says:

    2016 +0.50
    1998 +0.48

    Not really a sign of a dangerous warming…

  16. Bryan says:

    The planet has been getting warmer naturally since around 1600AD

    Fossil fuel use became significant from 1840AD onwards
    A trend line following this period can be established and then projected to the present to account for natural variation.

    This would establish a baseline to compare the accelerating trend that the IPCC claim is due to CO2 increase.

    So for a sceptic a natural rise is to be expected.

    For an IPCC advocate an accelerating rise is essential

    But for the period 1998 till 2016 virtually no rise of any kind is observed.

    Surely the penny has dropped for any reasonable person.

    • David Appell says:

      Bryan says:
      “The planet has been getting warmer naturally since around 1600AD”

      No it hasn’t:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:T_comp_61-90.pdf

      • Bryan says:

        There is an absurd attempt to deny the Central England temperature record.
        Several adjustments have been made to the data set and it is not at all clear if the original values can be found.

        However the historical record has the Thames freezing regularly.

        Water freezing gives a record set that does not rely on a thermometer and hence gives very strong evidence of very cold conditions around the 17th century.

        You might say that central England does not represent the World.
        However it would be odd if this long period of very cold weather was some kind of outlier.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_England_temperature

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/River_Thames_frost_fairs

        • David Appell says:

          Bryan says:
          “There is an absurd attempt to deny the Central England temperature record.”

          Is that a joke? You cannot judge the world’s temperature by a few cubic centimeters of air in one single, tiny, location on Earth. Talk about absurd.

          • Bryan says:

            Dr. John Christy, director of the Earth System Science Center at The University of Alabama in Huntsville said;

            “Because the margin of error is about 0.10 C, this would technically be a statistical tie

            Christy is correct the margin of error is 5 times bigger than the signal.

            You cannot claim more accuracy than your margin of error.

            This would be clear in any science discipline other than climate pseudoscience.

          • David Appell says:

            From UAH’s press release, titled “2016 Edges 1998 as Warmest Year on Record”:

            “Globally, 2016 edged out 1998 by +0.02 C to become the warmest year in the 38-year satellite temperature record, according to Dr. John Christy, director of the Earth System Science Center at The University of Alabama in Huntsville.”

            http://www.newswise.com/articles/2016-edges-1998-as-warmest-year-on-record

      • Mike Maguire says:

        David,
        What happened to the Medieval Warm Period on your temperature graph?

        You must have Michael Mannitis (-:

        https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/01/03/documenting-the-global-extent-of-the-medieval-warm-period/

        According to your graph, global temperatures were in a downtrend for 800 years and surely we must have just rescued life from the next Ice Age(or at least the great adversity created by continuing global cooling) with the warming since 1900.

        • David Appell says:

          Mike, what Medieval Warm Period?

          from the abstract of the PAGES 2k study:
          “There were no globally synchronous multi-decadal warm or cold intervals that define a worldwide Medieval Warm Period or Little Ice Age”

          — “Continental-scale temperature variability during the past two millennia,” PAGES 2k Consortium, Nature Geosciences, April 21, 2013
          http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v6/n5/abs/ngeo1797.html

          • David Appell says:

            Lewis, I’ll take a large, recent scientific study over an old, creeky encylopedia. Any day.

          • Mike Maguire says:

            “Mike, what Meideval Warm Period?”

            The one that exists in climate history, human recorded history and the fIrst IPCC report but was wiped out in the 2001 IPCC report, along with Mann’s tree rings studies and hockey stick climate history graph.

            But if we believe this silly rewrite(hijacking) of historical temperatures and man made global warming has interrupted the 800 year downtrend in temperatures then………humans have reescued the planet from global cooling!

            Since the last 4 decades of weather and climate have been the best for life on this planet since the Medieval Warm Period…….or by your definition, since the last period in climate history when temperatures were this warm…….you tell us when that was,…..lets let the observations on this greening planet get some weighting vs busted computer simulations in models programmed with equations that have been deemed infallible.

          • David Appell says:

            Mike, show us data for your purported global MWP.

            BTW, the hockey stick has appeared prominently in all IPCC ARs.

          • Mike Maguire says:

            Mike, show us data for your purported global MWP.”

            David,
            I showed you a link with numerous studies…….you responded to it but must not have looked at the link.

            Here is more to help you out:

            Medieval Warm Period Project:

            http://www.co2science.org/data/mwp/mwpp.php

            Project overview:
            http://www.co2science.org/data/mwp/description.php

            Temperature differentials……majority(100) show Medieval Warm Period Warmer than Current Warm Period:
            http://www.co2science.org/data/mwp/qualitative.php

            Scientists whose work is sited(over 100)

            http://www.co2science.org/data/mwp/scientists.php

          • Mike Maguire says:

            David,
            I showed you over 100 studies that point to a Medieval Warm Period, that was as warm or warmer than the Current Warm Period.

            Will you just ignore all these studies and believe a handful of the ones that confirm what you believe? You don’t have to show me them. I know and have seen them. Science is not just latching on to the data that confirms what you want to believe.

            At the very least, any objective and rightfully skeptical scientist would have to acknowledge that many hundreds of scientists found strong evidence of the Medieval Warm Period.

            Why is it so hard for you to acknowledge this?

            I acknowledge that we have had around 1 Deg C of warming over the last century and humans have caused some of it.

          • David Appell says:

            Mike Maguire says:
            “I showed you over 100 studies that point to a Medieval Warm Period”

            No you didn’t, you linked to a list of 100 scientists who purported did such studies. Is there a list of the studies?

            CO2 is well known to hide their funding sources. They have no scientific credibility.

          • David Appell says:

            Mike, there is no list of 100 studies — only a graph where one column goes to 100.

            What are the actual studies?

          • Mike Maguire says:

            David,
            You have the links and studies with the evidence. Pretending that there is nothigng there shows that you are just being a. Troll……..not interested in a 2 way discussion or exchange of authentic ideas…..just interested in disrupting.

  17. Interesting there was such a large drop from November to December. The CFSR GMST estimates from UM CCI and WxBELL also dropped, but not quite as much. I graphed them here:
    https://oz4caster.wordpress.com/2017/01/03/global-temperature-december-2016-preliminary/

    It’s also interesting that all the various estimates have diverged considerably since June, with the spread increasing from about 0.2C to 0.4C. Just goes to show some of the uncertainty involved in trying to estimate a global temperature anomaly.

  18. David Appell says:

    What’s the probability that 2016 was the warmest year?

    • Mike Maguire says:

      The importance of the verbiage in describing the global temperature in 2016 is telling.
      In science, .02 deg C is not significant in the realm that is being measured.
      In politics and marketing, being able to use “warmest ever” or “hottest ever” is a huge deal compared to not being able to use those terms.

      So let’s go ahead and say that the last 2 years were the MF-ing hottest years ever, since humans have been able to measure temperatures.

      What happened in 2015 and 2016?

      1. Record crop yields and world food production
      2. Planet was the record greenest since satellites have been able to measure this
      3. Record low number of violent tornadoes(that peaked in the 1970’s)
      4. Record longest streak for US to not have a major hurricane make landfall.
      5. Global drought continues to decrease slightly
      6. Sea levels went up a bit more than 1/10th of an inch

      But let’s forget all of that and focus on:

      7. Heavy rain events saw a slight uptick
      8. Arctic sea ice dropped to the 2nd lowest ever.

      So however verbiage you want to use to describe 2016 as warmer than any other years, it and the last 4 decades have featured the best weather, climate and CO2 levels for life on this planet for the last 1,000 years.

      If that isn’t true, please let us know about all the bad things that have happened because of this slight beneficial warming……..err, I mean record smashing hottest years ever.

      • Mike Maguire says:

        “So however verbiage you want to use to describe 2016”

        So whatever verbiage you want to use to describe 2016

      • David Appell says:

        Mike, a study published in BAMS looked for human-caused issues in 2015:

        http://www.noaa.gov/media-release/scientists-strong-evidence-human-caused-climate-change-intensified-2015-heat-waves

        Among them are 10 extreme heat waves that killed thousands of people, an intense wildfire season in Alaska, extreme drought southwestern Canada and in southeast China, and sunny day flooding in Florida in September

        The study is at:

        http://www.ametsoc.net/eee/2015/2015_bams_eee_low_res.pdf

      • Nate says:

        Mike,

        Perhaps warmer is better where you live, ok. But how bout the rest of the world?

        Most of the developing world is plenty warm enough. Extreme heat is not welcome there.

        In California the extended drought has not been the best weather they’ve ever had.

        In the Himalayas, the many glaciers (the 3rd pole) are counted on to feed rivers in spring that irrigate vast areas in China and India. These are in recession which is accelerating, trending toward a future of inadequate springtime water for ~ 500 million.

        No-one is saying 3.4 mm of sea level rise in 1 year is a lot, but the rate is accelerating and summed over 50 or 100 years it becomes significant for people living in coastal cities.

        • Mike Maguire says:

          “In California the extended drought has not been the best weather theyve ever had.”

          Global drought has not increased, the planet is greening up. You will always be able to find areas of drought and extreme weather. They have and will always exist naturally. Droughts in California have lasted for many decades not that long ago. There is no correlation between that drought and the increase in CO2.

          http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/14/science/californias-history-of-drought-repeats.html

          It’s interesting that we are about to have a huge precip event in California. In the next week, much of the northern and central parts of the state will see over 6 inches of rain, with isolated amounts of triple that. Snow will be measured in yards at the higher elevations. Reservoirs that are near record lows will be getting some needed water.

          http://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/qpf/p168i.gif?1483650690

          So is this extreme precip from human caused climate change?
          No! As an operational meteorologist for 34 years, I can tell you that a portion of their precip has always come from events like this.

          “California Extreme Precipitation Symposium”
          http://cepsym.org/proceedings.php

          The difference between believing that weather/climate is unprecedented because you read about it and knowing that it is/was not is often a matter of doing a bit of homework and having an open mind. There are hundreds of sources that show recent extreme weather is very tame by historical standards……as we would expect when the planet warms more at the highest latitudes and decreases the meridional temp gradient. The atmosphere does not need to work as hard to balance the heat differential.

          The last 4 decades have featured the best weather, climate, growing and living conditions for life on this planet since the Medieval Warm Period, 1,000 years ago. You don’t even need to do your homework to verify the Medieval Warm Period, just look at the 100+ studies from my previous post.

          Enjoy the data and enjoy this climate regime……even though some places will always be having extreme/bad weather.

          • Mike Maguire says:

            Nate,
            I am not completely blind or one sided on this issue. Arctic sea ice is near record low levels and yes, sea levels are increasing. “IF” this were to accelerate it would be a problem for the humans that decided to build along the coasts that assumed that climate would never change.
            With regards to the Arctic, polars bears are doing great and their numbers have increased greatly in the last 4 decades, mainly because we aren’t killing them like before.

            The polar bear has been used as a cuddly mascot for a marketing scheme to capture people’s brains by using propaganda……..vs scientific facts and authentic biology.

            When entities have to lie about things like this(current polar bear metric) then it means that the truth won’t support their position/cause.

          • Nate says:

            Mike,

            The supposed good weather of the MWP is a Euro-centric view of history, and the goodness of it. You are repeating that (centricity)

            You didnt address glacier melt or the the developing world. And nobody here is talking about polar bears.

          • Mike Maguire says:

            “The supposed good weather of the MWP is a Euro-centric view of history, and the goodness of it. You are repeating that (centricity)”

            Not true. This is just what you have read and heard. Please look at all the data and studies that I provided.

            “You didnt address glacier melt.”
            OK, glaciers are melting too, along with Arctic ice. Is that all you have?

            Doesn’t negate one iota of the statement that the last 4 decades have featured the best weather, climate, growing and living conditions for life on this planet since the Medieval Warm Period, 1,000 years ago.

            And for those of you that deny there was a Medieval Warm Period, then since the last time it was this warm……..which, in your book is a very long time ago.

          • David Appell says:

            What data and studies did you provide?

  19. David Appell says:

    If a new record has to be 0.10 C warmer than the old record, then the only statistically significant “warmest years” in the UAH LT record are 1980 and 1998.

    This despite almost +0.5 C of warming over the entire record.

    So, yeah, the headline pretty kinda sounds like the best spin available for people who don’t want to admit warming.

    • appell'sajerk says:

      I thought fat people were supposed to be jolly…

    • sod says:

      “If a new record has to be 0.10 C warmer than the old record, then the only statistically significant warmest years in the UAH LT record are 1980 and 1998.”

      yeah. basically we can eliminate records by just making it difficult enough to score one.

      So we eliminated the surface data (not reliable) and concentrate on satellite data (small number of years). Then we occasionally change parameters, and lose satellites/sensors. The effect: We are sorry, but there is no (significant) warming any longer, no matter how much it warms.

    • Tim Folkerts says:

      Yes, it seems like a more fair way to say it would be something like:

      “2016 Probably The Warmest Year in Satellite Records

      By our best estimates, 2016 was the warmest year in the satellite record. Due to the uncertainties of the measurements, it is possible that 1998 was actually warmer, but odds are that 2016 is indeed the warmest. “

    • Nate says:

      Good point David.

  20. fonzarelli says:

    WHO WINS THE RACE FOR WARMEST YEAR?

    As far as the race for warmest year goes, 1998 (+0.424 deg. C) barely edged out 2010 (+0.411 deg. C), but the difference (0.01 deg. C) is nowhere near statistically significant. So feel free to use or misuse those statistics to your hearts content.

    RWS January 3rd, 2011

  21. Lubos Motl says:

    Only 540 out of 703 pairs of the years in the 38-year interval, or 77%, agree with the claim that “a later year is warmer than the previous year”. In this sense, the increasing trend only exists at the 77% confidence level, slightly above 1 sigma.

    For more observations like that, click at my name.

    • Tim Folkerts says:

      That has to be about the most inane use of statistics I have ever seen! Randomly, you would expect half of the pairs to go up and half to go down.

      Using the binomial distribution, the odds are of getting 352 or more pairs going up are 0.5 (ie 50%)
      The odd of getting at least:
      * 355 –> 0.41
      * 360 –> 0.27
      * 380 –> 0.017
      * 400 –> 0.00014
      * 540 –> 0.00000000000000000000000000000000
      (Excel can’t actually produce enough precision to calculate this number!)

      So what you are REALLY showing is that we can be VERY sure that there is more warming than cooling. There is about 99% confidence that warming occurs 77% +/- 4% of the time. (Ie if warming was occurring less 73% or more than 81%, then getting 540 out of 703 going up would be highly unlikely). The odds of 540 out of 703 being random (50%) are incalculably small.

      For more observations like that … yeah, I think I’ll pass.

    • sod says:

      This is the most absurd look at statistics that i have ever seen.

      and if we put the threshold for a record at “beating the last record by +5C”, we won t see any record over the next century.

  22. ren says:

    For several years now there is a clear shift of the polar vortex in the direction of Europe and it is a clear trend.
    http://images.tinypic.pl/i/00855/ifuzwmefexm9.png

  23. E. Swanson says:

    Dr. Spencer, while it’s always interesting to see the latest UAH results, I think it’s important to realize that the meteorological year begins on 1 December. Your latest results should thus be the first installment for 2017.

    While we’re at it, the coldest time of the year for the US lower 48 is around the middle of January, so the projected cold and snow of your previous post isn’t unusual. And, how ’bout those tornadoes in the Southeast yesterday, were they NORMAL?

    • The numbers we post are departures from seasonal (actually, monthly) normals, so things like meteorological winter and when the coldest time of year occurs are not relevant.

      And, no, Gulf coast severe weather isn’t unusual this time of year.

      • E. Swanson says:

        The division of the year’s days into months is a rather arbitrary choice and the beginning of the calendar year on 1 January has no geophysical meaning. Why not just give seasonal averages with Winter beginning on 1 December, etc., which would better match the influence of the annual solar cycle? Oh, sorry, I suppose you probably are more interested in keeping your faithful followers happy with your monthly releases of your corrected MSU2/AMSU5 series.

        • Lewis says:

          Dear M. Swanson,

          Yes, months are arbitrary, but, in case you hadn’t noticed, in common use.

          Your idea reminds me of those whose last names start with letters far into the alphabet. They often advocate changing the order of the alphabet to let them be first occasionally.

          PC at it’s finest.

  24. Slipstick says:

    The lack of statistical significance is an artifact of the calendar.

    For example, if we look at two year periods:
    97-98 (or 98-99) +0.25
    15-16 +0.38

    Three year periods:
    96-98 +0.15
    14-16 +0.31

    • True. I’m only addressing the claims of “warmest year on record” here. One can always change the averaging intervals to come to qualitatively different conclusions.

      When it comes to “global warming”, the most important single statistic in my opinion is the linear trend, which is still only 0.12 C/decade.

      Maybe in each monthly update I should have the headline:

      “Warming Rate Still Only 0.12 C/decade”

      But that would get a little boring. So, we talk about statistics people are used to hearing, like “2016 worst year ever for…”

    • sod says:

      “The lack of statistical significance is an artifact of the calendar.

      For example, if we look at two year periods:
      97-98 (or 98-99) +0.25
      15-16 +0.38

      Three year periods:
      96-98 +0.15
      14-16 +0.31”

      do not dare to bring facts into this debate!

      The “fake news crowd” has decided that any temperature record is irrelevant because it can be cast into statistical doubt unless earth transforms into a burning ball from one second into the next (and then the debate wont matter any longer).

      And do not even dare to question, whether the medieval warming period was really warm or just a tie with a phase 10000 years ago!

  25. Paul says:

    Dr. Spencer. Please give them the headline they want. They aren’t interested in the data anyway. If they were, they wouldn’t attribute 0.1 deg to El Nino and claim 2016 as the hottest year ever, when temperatures are plummeting since 9 months.

    • sod says:

      ” If they were, they wouldnt attribute 0.1 deg to El Nino and claim 2016 as the hottest year ever, when temperatures are plummeting since 9 months.”

      This is what happens, when scientists support nonsense. Here is, how “sceptics2 turn your headlines. They think that cooling after el nino is significant, while high temperature records are not.

      You are supporting the fake news crowd and help them spread misinformation!

      Sad.

  26. Paul says:

    @Sod

    Cooling since El Nino spike actually is 0.6 deg in monthly data. Difference between 1998 and 2016 is 0.02 deg. Up to you to decide where the significance is.

    • sod says:

      “Cooling since El Nino spike actually is 0.6 deg in monthly data. Difference between 1998 and 2016 is 0.02 deg. Up to you to decide where the significance is.”

      The term “significance” has a statistical meaning. It involves making decisions, but not the way you assume.

      In general, we would check if trends are statistically significant. Th upward trend over the full data obviously is. Whether the drop over the last few month is, i do not know. It doesn t look very different from other drops.

  27. Paul says:

    But feel free to create your own message from the data. Hottest year in record and be it. After doing it ask yorself with the monthly data in front of you: So what?

  28. Kevin White says:

    As I predicted, 2016 finished statistically tied with 1998. So the pause continues, alarmists will not like this! The demise of El Nino’s lingering influence combined with a strengthening La Nina and declining solar cycle will mean a much cooler 2017. It’s a little something called regression towards the mean. Note to alarmists, strong El Nino years are always warm, 2016 in that respect was nothing out of the ordinary. Get over it there is no statistically significant AGW.

    • Tim Folkerts says:

      1) A “pause” is not defined by individual years. It should be determined by trendlines. So analyze slopes, not individual years.

      2) Why do you call this a “strong El Nino”? The typical El Nino. This is unlike the 1998 El Nino, which from from near zero and then dropped back to near zero. So an apparently *weak* El Nino *still* produced a record!

      3) This is not really a good example of regression toward the mean (which would be caused by random variations, not a pattern like El Nino evolving into La Nina). If nothing else, the regression should be toward “typical” values, which in this case would most logically be the 0.12 C/decade upward sloping trendline.

      • Paul says:

        Why do you call it a weak El Nino? Any data that supports that assumption?

        The 1998 El Nino needed approx. 20 months to vanish. We still have 10 to 12 months to compare both.

      • Sven says:

        The strongest El Nino in recorded history is a *weak* El Nino????

        http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/ensostuff/ensoyears.shtml

        ENSO index peak for 2015/2016 is 2.2 (and, yes, started from zero and dropped to zero, like it always happens)
        The next ones are 1997/1998 and 1982/1983 at 2.1

        Ideology, just like religion, does make people blind…

        • Sven says:

          Oops … sorry, the peak for 2015/2016 was even 2.3 not 2.2

          • Tim Folkerts says:

            My comment about strength was based on the effect of the El nino on temperature –the *extra* warming from the El Nino “spike” above the existing baseline. This was indeed fairly small.

            I was thinking akin to a spring tide. Even a small wave atop a spring high tide will be higher than a good-sized wave atop a high neap tide. Similarly, one could describe El Nino strength from how warm the surface gets. A relatively small peak atop a high background could be considered “large” from an absolute perspective, but not so large from a relative perceptive.

            So I looked a little further, focusing on the Multivariate ENOS Index (MEI) (mostly since it seemed a good overall estimate of El Nino/La Nina and since I found the data set easily). This index has a slope when you do a linear fit, increasing about 0.0125/year since 1950. This is perhaps not surprising since overall ocean temperatures have increased over that time. This means that — relative to this linear trendline — MEI values near the end would be be adjusted downward about -0.4 and those near the beginning adjusted upward about 0.4 to give “account” for the trend. In this sense, the most recent El Nino is only moderately strong.

            This leaves us with a couple competing interpretations. One would be that an unusual series of strong El Ninos have pushed global temperatures up (and there is no ‘baseline upward trend’ from other causes). The other would be that the recent El Ninos are mostly “typical” but get a boost from global warming and a higher baseline SST. Unfortunately, I would suspect it would take a number of years to sort out which answer is better (eg multi-decadal oscillations could *look* like a multi-decadal upward upward trend).

          • Sven, the 1997/98 El Nino also peaked at 2.3 K. That El Nino and the most recent one have had about the same strength.

        • Greven says:

          How strange that two months of 1997/1998 were 2.3, while you say it was only 2.1… clearly you cannot read.

          • Greven says:

            Or, perhaps I should just quote your ironic self-description:
            “Ideology, just like religion, does make people blind”

          • Sven says:

            Yes, my bad. I first planned to write only about 1998 and 2016. Then changed to the whole El Nino periods of 1997/1998 and 2015/2016. That created the confusion. Working on an iphone contributed as well. You are correct that the 1997/1998 peak was also 2.3. So the Tim Folkerts’ *weak* El Nino was not “the strongest El Nino in recorded history but “tied with 1997/1998 as the strongest El Nino in recorded history”. And apparently even that fact, combined with the fact that it was not followed by a strong La Nina, still failed to produce a record. Now, is that correct?

          • Sven says:

            And as to the “ironic self-description” – touch… In fact I regretted writing it as soon as I pressed “Submit comment”. It’s not a nice or wise thing to say and never adds anything to a discussion. One should stick to facts and avoid unnecessary snark. Will try to stick to facts. My appologies.

          • Sven says:

            Seems that the site does not accept french letters – touch… should end with e with accent aigu. Definition – “used as an acknowledgment during a discussion of a good or clever point made at one’s expense by another person.”

        • Kristian says:

          Sven says, January 3, 2017 at 2:20 PM:

          The strongest El Nino in recorded history is a *weak* El Nino????

          Well, it certainly wasn’t a weak one. It was definitely a strong one. However, it’s still pretty clear it was rather dwarfed by the 1997/98 event.

          Here’s a comparison between the three biggest El Nino events over the past 40 years, the 1982/83 event, the 1997/98 event, and the 2015/16 event. First the “Equatorial Upper-Ocean Heat Content” of the Pacific basin (130E-80W) (according to CPC):
          https://okulaer.files.wordpress.com/2016/12/eq-ohc-b1.png

          Then the 4 month average SSTa (including the months with the highest anomaly around the peak of each event) of the tropical Pacific basin (10N-15S, 145E-75W):
          (1982/83) https://okulaer.files.wordpress.com/2016/12/g20161209_0557_21808_1.png
          (1997/98) https://okulaer.files.wordpress.com/2016/12/g20161209_0558_26296_1.png
          (2015/16) https://okulaer.files.wordpress.com/2016/12/g20161209_0559_27363_1.png

          Note the black rectangle. That’s the NINO3.4 region. You will also note that the anomaly scale and range (NOAA (Reynolds) OIv2) is exactly the same in all three cases.

          Inside the NINO3.4 rectangle, the overall SSTa of the 2015/16 event is actually as high or even slightly higher than that of the 1997/98 event, believe it or not. But when you look at the full picture, there is absolutely no question the latter event was the stronger one. By far …

      • Sven says:

        And the 1998 El Nino turned right into a strong La Nina, what the 2016 El Nino did not, though it looked like it would at first. That fact probably did not have an insignificant role in making 2016 into such a warm year.

        http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/lanina/enso_evolution-status-fcsts-web.pdf

        So, again, it depends how you formulate your point. I would do it like that – even though the 2016 El Nino was significantly stronger than 1998 and did not turn into a strong La Nina, like in 1998, 2016 still ties with 1998…

  29. Mike M. says:

    Elliot Bignell wrote: “Perhaps we should allow that a moment to sink in.”

    I noticed that result some time ago myself and it has definitely sunk in. Looks like there is nothing much to worry about.

    A continued linear increase in temperature corresponds to a continued exponential increase in CO2. That would lead to a forcing between 5.0 and 5.5 W/m^2 in 2100. I would say that is a reasonable business-as-usual scenario; that is, what might happen without any large innovations in energy technology. Given that CO2 emission growth already seems to be slowing, it looks like 2.0 K of warming is pretty much a worst case scenario. And 2.0 K is nothing much to worry about.

    Elliot Bignell wrote: “That is to say, that if we were to stop adding CO2e to the atmosphere today, then the warming being produced by the gases already in the atmosphere, without adjusting for decay in the concentrations, would put us very close indeed to the RPC6.0 scenarios outcome.”

    Someone ought to explain to Mr. Bignall how the Greenhouse effect works and what the 6.0 on “RCP6.0” means. I don’t have the patience.

    • Mike M. says:

      Hmm. This got disconnected from the message that I meant to reply to ( Elliott Bignell, January 3, 2017 at 8:55 AM). Lets see if I have fixed that problem.

    • “… In spite of this restriction, global emissions of CO2 from fossil fuel combustion and cement production have continued to grow by 2.5% per year on average over the past decade. Two thirds of the CO2 emission quota consistent with a 2 C temperature limit has already been used, and the total quota will likely be exhausted in a further 30 years at the 2014 emissions rates.”

      http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v7/n10/full/ngeo2248.html

      “A continued linear increase in temperature corresponds to a continued exponential increase in CO2. That would lead to a forcing between 5.0 and 5.5 W/m^2 in 2100.”

      The RPC 4.5 scenario projects almost exactly 2K over Y2K temperatures – see the graph. That amounts to about 2.8K over pre-industrial levels. You have just said that we are looking at an RPC 5.0 to RPC 5.5 scenario – i.e. that we are going to actually exceed RPC 4.5. I’d be worried, if I were you.

      “I dont have the patience.”

      Or the brains.

      • Mike M. says:

        Elliott Bignell,

        You are spouting nonsense. Present forcing is about 2.3 W/m^2. To get 2.0 K warming from an additional 2.2 W/m^2 would require a TCR of 3.4 K and an ECS of somewhere around 7.4 K. Way beyond even the IPCC range. Using an observationally justified TCR of about 1.3 K gives about 0.8 K additional warming for that forcing.

        • Just read off the graphs. They are entirely clear. The 6.0 scenario ends a little more than 2K over y2K temperatures, making for a little over 2.8K of total warming. The 4.5 scenario ends so close to 2K over Y2K levels as to be almost unreadable, making for very close to 2.8K. You’ve admitted that we are looking at a 5.0 to 5.5 scenario.

          Not that hard, surely?

          • Mike M. says:

            Elliott Bignell,

            Oh! There is a graph somewhere! So it must be true!

            I have no idea what graph you are referring to. But, as I argued above, it is clear that the graph must be making unreasonable assumptions. Of course, you don’t care about that.

  30. Dan Pangburn says:

    Solar activity (quantified by SSN) is a proxy for average global temperature change on earth. Assessment of solar activity should include the influence of duration as well as magnitude of solar cycles. Also a threshold must exist for sunspot numbers; above the threshold warming occurs and below it cooling occurs. This is accomplished using the time-integral of sunspot number anomalies (measured minus threshold). When combined with an approximation of the effect of ocean cycles and the contribution to warming of increasing water vapor, the result is a 98% match to 5-yr smoothed measurements 1895-2015. http://globalclimatedrivers2.blogspot.com

  31. AaronS says:

    I dont have IPCC model prediction data to calculate the mean (it would be a great thing to share bc it is difficult to download). I am curious where does 2016 rank in:

    Highest ranking years for climate model error and exaggerated warming compared to measured data?

    A plot through time of measured temperature minus predicted temperature is the thing i feel that general population need.

  32. Sven says:

    Now that is a really innovative definition of the strength of El Nino! Must be your own invention. I’ve followed the “debate” for around 10 years now and I certainly have not seen this before.

    • Sven says:

      It was supposed to be a reply to Tim Folkerts, I have no idea why it landed here

      • fonzarelli says:

        Sven, my guess is that you’re using a mobile device (?) Comments have to be posted using the desk top version or they oft end up at the bottom of the page. Note that Tim’s comment lacks a reply button with the desk top version, but has a (false) reply button with the mobile version. If you have trouble getting the desk top version on your mobile device, let me know and i’ll walk you through how to do it…

  33. Entropic man says:

    If the December GISS temperature comes in 0.21C cooler than November, down from 0.95C to 0.74C, the GISS Land-Ocean temperature for 2016 would be 0.98C. We will know definately when their data comes out in three weeks time.

    GISS for 1998 was 0.63C. The warming to 2016 would be a statistically significant 0.35C.

    Are the two sides going to spend the next year arguing over which of the six main temperature datasets show significant warming and which do not, and what that means for the climate?

    • Bart says:

      GISS is not a credible data set. You will not make any points with knowledgeable people using it.

      • Greven says:

        So UAH is credible when there are VERY LARGE variations between v5.6 and v6.0?
        _UAH_5.6_
        1998 (J-D): +0.42
        2016 (J-N): +0.60

        _UAH_6.0_
        1998 (J-D): +0.48
        2016 (J-D): +0.50

        • Bart says:

          Meh. Barely discernible in the plot:

          http://woodfortrees.org/plot/uah5/plot/uah6

          These differences are not “very large”. As a fraction of the peak values for these El Nino years, they are VERY SMALL.

          Nothing like this:

          http://realclimatescience.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/NASA-2000Vs2016.gif

          • Greven says:

            You should also look at other bits of the UAH data – especially the Arctic in 2016 from UAH v5.6 to 6.0:
            0.9 degree difference in October.

            What is the data source for that GIF?

            GIS is not doing much.

          • Bart says:

            Gimme a break, will ya’? I’ve been keeping tabs on this long enough to know that the surface data sets agreed with the satellite sets very well up until they manipulated the bucket data to add spurious new warming. It’s a blatant and transparent fudge to keep the warming meme going in the face of an uncooperative real climate.

            Now, your side wants to cast aspersions on the satellite data to complete the con. Go sell it to the numbskulls who lap up your bilge. I’m not buying.

          • David Appell says:

            Carl Mears, Senior Research Scientist, Remote Sensing Systems (RSS)

            “A similar, but stronger case can be made using surface temperature datasets, which I consider to be more reliable than satellite datasets.”

            http://www.remss.com/blog/recent-slowing-rise-global-temperatures

          • Bart says:

            Yes, Mears serves at the sufferance of the climate mafia. He knows which side his bread is buttered on.

          • Greven says:

            Bart,

            How strange. Why are you unwilling to link where that NASA-2000Vs2016.gif came from – from what data source does it originate?

          • Bart says:

            I wasn’t aware that I was obligated to do your web searches for you. But, here are the data:

            http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/history/output/met_used.zip

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “Yes, Mears serves at the sufferance of the climate mafia. He knows which side his bread is buttered on.”

            You always have an excuse, don’t you Bart.

            If you can’t provide the data and science wrong, you just use insults and imply someone is crooked, all without any proof or analysis whatsoever.

            When you have to resort to garbage like that, your claims aren’t at all convincing. It shows no thinking whatsoever.

          • Bart says:

            Where’s the excuse? An excuse is “a plea offered in extenuation of a fault“. I am admitting no fault. I am pointing out that Dr. Mears heads a private research company dependent on contracts from NASA’s Earth Sciences arm, and has a keen self interest in pleasing his customers.

          • David Appell says:

            Bart, I take that to mean you manipulate data at your job, due to a keen self interest in pleasing your customers, and so you assume everyone else does it too.

          • Bart says:

            Yeah, unfortunately David, if I did that, people would die, and my customers wouldn’t be pleased for very long. I expect it’s nice to be in a field, like climate science, where there are no consequences for being wrong most of the time.

          • Greven says:

            Bart,

            Thanks for showing where you got the info. A web search for that was insufficient to find it, sorry.

            However, I think that GIF is a bit misleading. Here’s what the image looks like just pasting the frames on top of each other:
            http://www.evilgreven.net/images/nasaadjustments.png

            The longer beginning and shorter end seem to distort things. Looking at them side-by-side you see it’s pretty close; the maximum adjustment happens near the beginning, ~0.2 degrees Celsius. The much more certain modern era has far less adjustment at/below ~0.1 degrees; no more than UAH versions have been adjusted.

            You plotting that graph in WoodForTrees doesn’t show how different they really are:
            http://environmentalforest.blogspot.com/2015/05/first-look-uah-60-vs-uah-56-vs-rss.html

            You can clearly tell the 0.1 degree Celsius difference (nearing 0.2 for 2016!)between UAH v6.0 and v5.6 in my data above and that’s straight from this site.

          • David Appell says:

            So you’re the only honest man in the world, huh Bart?

            No one else can be honest but you. You can insult the integrity of others, based on no data whatsoever, but you’re above it all, just becausey you say so.

            That must be a weighty crown to bear.

          • Nate says:

            Bart. Thats a nice way to obscure the issues. Both sets have changes of about .1 C. But the satellite data has lots more noise and is not smoothed as nasa data is.

          • Bart says:

            Greven –

            All data are uncertain, and within the realm of uncertainty, there is leeway for various interpretations. What I see happening is that adjustments to the satellite record go both ways, while adjustments to the surface record are overwhelmingly in one direction.

            David – I do not know if it is dishonesty, or incompetence, or both driving the panic mongering. But, I know that there is no emergency, and I know that the proposed cures are worse than the purported disease.

            Nate – Smoothness of the data is not a general indicator of quality.

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “David I do not know if it is dishonesty, or incompetence, or both driving the panic mongering. But, I know that there is no emergency, and I know that the proposed cures are worse than the purported disease.”

            You don’t know anything, because you never look at data or do any analysis.

            Intuition is not science. That’s what makes science so useful.

            And insults aren’t a counterargument.

          • Bart says:

            Way to contradict yourself within the space of a couple of sentences there, Dave.

          • barry says:

            Bart,

            What I see happening is that adjustments to the satellite record go both ways, while adjustments to the surface record are overwhelmingly in one direction.

            The single biggest adjustment to the surface data sets has been to cool the centennial record, by adjusting upwards sea surface temps in the past – making the slope shallower.

            http://tinyurl.com/gtrllh4

    • JasG says:

      Until they reconcile the terrestrial recons with the more accurate satellite recons then they are all worthless. The fact that they all use the same data means that 6, 20 or 100,000 recons would still not validate each other. The fact that Giss was quick to adopt the NOAA pause-buster adjustments where accurate sea temperatures were replaced by extrapolations from bucket measurements tell us all we need to know about them. That unscientific politically-motivated bodge will, I expect, be reverted after proper scrutiny under the Trump administration and Noaa will flop back down to match the satellites/radiosondes once again. However even then it will still be running hot because the atmosphere should really be warming more than the surface according to the man-made warming hypothesis….but then the Antarctic should also be warming….and the stratosphere should be cooling…..and the pause should not be happening. Giss will still of course remain the pessimistic outlier due to the fact that it unscientifically extrapolates across the Arctic (otherwise known as just making it up).

      Meantime most of the (global) warming in Giss (outside the 100% invented Arctic data) seems to be happening in Siberia in Winter; so not of even local concern, never kind global. Giss climate models are just as inaccurate, being the worst performer spatially and temporally compared with all other models. In any privately funded endeavor such resolute incompetence would be rewarded by the sack.

      • barry says:

        Results differ very little whether you use GHCN, or a well-spread subset, whether you use or rural or sea surface records, whether you use different records to GHCN, no matter what methods you use, or if you are a skeptic who actually decides that they will construct your own temp record from raw data, and endeavour to use the best methods you can think of (3 different skeptic groups have done this).

        There are numerous global (and US) surface temp records made by AGW skeptics and others. They are not much different from each other.

        Critics complain automatically. Useful people crunch the numbers, running their own tests.

        Those that have done this, stop complaining.

        Check out their work. For example,

        https://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2010/03/24/thermal-hammer/

      • Greven says:

        Satellites are not ‘more accurate.’

        They have more coverage, but they do not directly measure temperature. Temperature is inferred based on theory; interpreted and modeled from microwave sounders.

  34. Francis says:

    I am not a scientist but only a humble lawyer. However, it seems to me from having looked at this subject for many hours online that the likelihood that there is man made global warming going on is incredibly small. I think that I now know enough about the key points in debate to make comment in them.

    What is being discussed is, at the moment, something much less than 2 C having started with an average which could have itself been +/- a good part of that anyway pending what average you take.

    I cannot accept that the historic toempritue record, mostly having come from ‘proxy’ measurements, could be accurate by more than +/- something like 10 C. I know that science is very good and is constantly getting better these days but I don’t believe anyone who thinks that they can tell me what the global temperature is today without the use of a satellite, much less someone who can tell me what it was half way through the 18th century. Neither can I believe that accurate adjustments can be made to allow for what kind of buckets were used to measure temperature using who knows how accurate a thermometer on so many different ships all those years ago.

    In my view the satellite measurements are the only thing that we have which has much chance at all of providing the information that we need to decide this issue. The earth could get quite a lot warmer over the next few years and that would still not ‘prove’ the issue either way. I don’t think that anyone would be wise to try to forecast what the temperature will actually do for any short to medium period of years at any stage (ask the ‘warmers’). However, now that we have been through 2016 it seems to me that the ‘warmers’ have now had their shock headlines, probably, for a long time to come.If 2017 is warmer still I may well go and join the ‘warmers’ but I don’t think that it will be.

    Dr Spencer, for my part I do think that your headline could have been a little closer to ‘2016 just pips it at the post’ or something like that. In the future you may be glad that the high point was so high, all lower temperatures in years to come will be comparatively lower because of it.

    I think that the key question for the warmers now is ‘how much cooling over how long would it take to convince you that man has no significant effect?’ and then ‘how much lack of warming over how long would it take to convince you that man has no significant effect?’ Or ‘how many C drop would convince you?’

    If those questions were answered we would at least have a target, mind you I don’t expect my life will be long enough to see it!

    Dr Spencer keep up the good work, the world needs more like you and Illegitimi non carborundum.

    • David Appell says:

      Francis wrote:
      “I think that the key question for the warmers now is how much cooling over how long would it take to convince you that man has no significant effect?”

      Francis, how much more warming over how long would it take to convince you that man has a significant effect?

      • Francis says:

        David, good question.

        Looking at the satellite record it seems to me there are a number of points worthy of note.

        First, the lowest low on the 13 month average (assuming that I am reading off the graph correctly) was October 1984 @ -0.51 and the highest high was May 2016 @ +0.5. That is a difference of 1.1 over the 37 year record. That seems to me to be very little change for that period.

        Second, the higher temperatures (on the 13 month average) are followed each time by a number of years where the temperatures drop back down. That recovery is then countered by a higher high. Between 1998 and 2016 the temperatures were settling back down before they went up to the 2016 peak. That is 18 years, with a significant peak in 2010, before getting back up to (and slightly over) the 1998 figure. I don’t see that that can in any way show a trend of warming overall.

        Third, I get that you can’t take a single year in isolation or even a 2 year average but as you step to three years, five years or ten years you are asking for a much bigger step each time to be able to claim a warming trend. If we were to see a significant lack of the cooling in future years between peaks then that would support a warming argument. Or if we saw a peak larger than 1998 and 2016 in much less than 18 years then that would support warming. However, if we saw any lows, as low as 1992 or 1985 or lower, then they would stand against the warming argument.

        Fourth, if the problem is CO2 then the fact that it has been increasing consistently over the whole period should mean that the temperature should increase consistently, at least, over any period of a decade or more.

        Therefore I would say that it would need a high on the 13 month average of more than 0.55 within the next 18 years without a low below -0.31 within that period for it to be likely that man’s CO2 is making it happen.

        What are the warmers’ answers?

        • Entropic man says:

          Francis

          I was asked this on another blog.

          The most recent GISS 5-year average centred on 2013 is 0.79C+/-0.1C.

          A stastically significant cooling would be 0.2C. Show me a future GISS 5-year average below 0.59C and I would accept that global warming has stopped.

        • David Appell says:

          Francis says:
          “First, the lowest low on the 13 month average (assuming that I am reading off the graph correctly) was October 1984 @ -0.51 and the highest high was May 2016 @ +0.5. That is a difference of 1.1 over the 37 year record. That seems to me to be very little change for that period.”

          Compared to what?

          When the Earth left its last ice age to when warming peaked, the average rate of warming was only +0.005 C/decade.

          So today’s rate of LT warming is about 25 times higher.

          • Francis says:

            And when the earth left the last ice age what were the rolling 13 month averages and the highest and lowest of them in each 37 year period?.

            The trouble with historic data is that it simply cannot be accurate, at best it is approximate. There may be some degree of certainty as to the overall averages over long periods but we do not have the satellite record.

          • David Appell says:

            Francis: Our current rate of warming is about 30 times faster than when the last ice age was ending.

            From Shakun et al Nature 2012 Figure 2a:
            http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v484/n7392/full/nature10915.html

            global temperature anomaly in year -18,000 is -3.4 C
            global temperature anomaly in year -11,000 is +0.0 C

            so the average temperature change is 3.4 C in 7000 years, or ~ +0.005 C/decade, compared to NOAA’s current 30-year trend of +0.17 C/decade

            So that’s a factor of 30 now compared to then.

          • fonzarelli says:

            Francis, don’t bother tangling with appell. (he’s the biggest liar in the blogosphere…) He well knows that we had an equvilent amount of warming a century ago, but he’s never going to tell you that. In fact he’ll probably use his sock puppet “John” to refute early twentieth century warming as he has done in the past…

        • David Appell says:

          Francis wrote:
          “That is 18 years, with a significant peak in 2010, before getting back up to (and slightly over) the 1998 figure. I dont see that that can in any way show a trend of warming overall.”

          Francis, you’re doing numerology, not math.

          You can’t calculate the change in the data just by looking at two data points, peak-to-peak. Those two peaks just don’t accurately represent the data.

          “Fourth, if the problem is CO2 then the fact that it has been increasing consistently over the whole period should mean that the temperature should increase consistently, at least, over any period of a decade or more.”

          No no no no no no no. Natural variations still exist in a warming world.

          So again: how much more warming over how long would it take to convince you that man has a significant effect?

          • Francis says:

            I was not trying to do math. I accept that to a great degree what the figures provide is statistical and can be looked at in that way. I further accept that I know so close to nothing about statistical analysis as makes no difference.

            If all of the scientists and mathematicians and statisticians knew how the climate and the numbers worked then they could model it but they don’t even come close. So, it seems, they are as good at it as I am.

            David wrote:

            “You cant calculate the change in the data just by looking at two data points, peak-to-peak. Those two peaks just dont accurately represent the data.”

            We (by which I mean everyone on earth) don’t know what the data tells us, assuming that it could tell us anything if we understood it better. Whatever the important influences are CO2, the sun, the air, the land, the sea, the volcanos or any number of other factors the truth is that ‘we’ don’t know. But, if the planet is warming then the high points and the low points should get higher with time, that is just logic. In the satellite record the low points have been pulled up over the 37 year period but none of them from a standing start. If I boil a kettle and then let it cool it will take just as long to boil again if I leave it to get as cool as it was. But if I start it boiling again very soon after it boiled the first time it will do it so much quicker than the last time. The math is irrelevant. High highs will be followed by higher lows until it cools down again. The question is will we get higher highs before the lows have recovered.

            David wrote:

            “No no no no no no no. Natural variations still exist in a warming world.”

            And we (the same we as above) don’t know what those natural variations are or what their data is over any period. If the warmers knew that ‘the pause’ was caused by some particular variant then they would have measured the data and told us but they have not. Just because you don’t know what causes something it is no good just saying that it must be CO2. You need to be able to demonstrate what it is if you expect people to suffer and die for it.

            So many times in history what seemed to be very difficult and complicated questions proved in the end to have very simple answers, this could be one of those times.

            And in answer to your question; it would take higher lows and higher highs in the satellite record. The higher they are the sooner I could be convinced but if a volcano interferes then I would still need higher temperatures. Other than that I stand by my previous answer.

          • David Appell says:

            Francis,

            Again, more numerology and hand-waving, when what’s called for is analysis.

            “And we (the same we as above) dont know what those natural variations are or what their data is over any period.”

            We do know some, but it doesn’t matter, they exist and they mean temperature isn’t going to increase monotonically with CO2. This is so obvious it’s dumb to even argue about it.

            “So many times in history what seemed to be very difficult and complicated questions proved in the end to have very simple answers, this could be one of those times.”

            This is the end — the increase in temperature is due to man’s emissions of greenhouse gases. As is ocean acidification.

            I recognize you are desperate to have something else — anything else — be causing the warming. But the science clearly shows AGW, and it was known in the 1800s that this would happen.

            So again: how much more warming over how long would it take to convince you that man has a significant effect?

          • fonzarelli says:

            The ipcc claims that as little as half of recent warming may be caused by agw. If we’re generous and assign 0.3 C as half of recent warming, then 0.5 C (since LIA) would be natural. And that’s if the ipcc’s unproven assertion is actually correct. The science doesn’t “clearly show” anything…

          • Francis says:

            David

            We seem to agree that there are many factors which affect the global temperature. The difference is that you say that CO2 is increasing temperature in a more than minor way, I say that there is no proof of that, there is too much noise. Therefore I say that the temperature has not gone up any more than it would have done if man were not on the planet.

            If your starting point is that temperature has gone up more than it would have done then you have to look for what caused that. If your starting point is that there has not been such an increase then there is nothing to look for. We know that the planet can go into and out of ice ages but you say that it should now stop going up and down, why?

            David wrote:

            “the increase in temperature is due to mans emissions of greenhouse gases. As is ocean acidification.”

            Prove it! If you can do that then we don’t even need temperature records or increases we would know it to be a fact, but you can’t and we don’t.

          • David Appell says:

            Francis, the proof is in many papers publishe over the years, summarized in modern textbooks.

            Have you read any climate science textbooks, Francis?

            Or, for free, you could read the IPCC 5AR WG1. But a textbook would be clearer.

          • David Appell says:

            Francis, if not anthropogenic GHGs, what natural factor(s) are causing modern warming?

            How much more warming over how long would it take to convince you that man has a significant effect?

          • Francis says:

            David

            Maybe you and I differ over the meaning of phrases such as ‘prove it’ and words such as ‘proof’.

            I would not have set you the challenge if there was any chance that such proof exists, it does not. If it did then this website would not exist and there would be no dispute.

            Given time I could give you a long list of well qualified scientists who do or have worked in appropriate fields that disagree with what you call ‘proof’ (I don’t however propose to do that) and you could do a list of those that agree with you (I don’t expect you to do so either) but I am sure that my list would constitute more than 3% of the total.

          • David Appell says:

            Francis, yes, there is a strong preponderance of evidence that CO2 is the leading cause of AGW.

            But since you won’t read papers or textbooks, you’ll never learn that and will always be arguing from a position of ignorance.

            How much more warming over how long would it take to convince you that man has a significant effect?

  35. mojomojo says:

    An email I sent [email protected] was sent back as not deliverable.
    Do you have a email current address?If not heres the content.

    Hi Roy ,
    I started a thread using your post
    “Global Satellites: 2016 not Statistically Warmer than 1998″as the topic and I would appreciate if you would comment on why version 6 global TLT data is not the data used in your blog.
    Heres the blog.You will need to create a username.
    Thanks
    Im the sole skeptic on this environmental site and have been defending climate skepticism for years without any scientific or engineering background.
    https://priuschat.com/threads/latest-global-temp-anomaly-dec-16-0-24%C2%B0c-global-satellites-2016-not-statistically-warme.175146/#post-2473564

  36. David Appell says:

    I think the probability that 2016 was the warmest year is 66%, and the probability that 1998 was is the complement of that, 34%.

    Assume the temperatures are normally distributed, with 2*sigma = 0.10.

    So what we have are two normal distributions side-by-side, one (2016) with a peak 0.02 C more than 1998, to the right.

    The probability that 1998 was the warmest year is the area to the right of the 2016 curve from 0.50 C to infinity.

    Normalizing the coordinates, this is the area to the right of 0.4 of the normal distribution.

    0.4 = (0.50-0.48)/0.05

    where the first two numbers are the means, and sigma = 0.05 is the standard deviation.

    The area of the normal distribution to the right of 0.4 is 0.3446.
    See:
    http://www.stat.ncsu.edu/people/osborne/courses/xiamen/normal-table.pdf

    so P(1998 is warmest) = 34%

    The probability 2016 was the warmest year is the complement of the probability that 1998 was, so

    P(2016 is warmest) = 66%

    • Bart says:

      “Assume the temperatures are normally distributed, with 2*sigma = 0.10.”

      Why should we assume that? Why should we assume a time invariant distribution at all? Answer: we shouldn’t. These data are autocorrelated, with both long and short term correlations.

      “So what we have are two normal distributions side-by-side, one (2016) with a peak 0.02 C more than 1998, to the right.”

      You do not appear to understand probability distributions. The height at any given point does not have physical significance, only area under the curve.

      “The area of the normal distribution to the right of 0.4 is 0.3446.”

      No, no, no, no, no. That is nothing like a test of the null hypothesis, Junior. This is terrible. Go back to doing whatever your liberal arts degree qualifies you to do.

      • David Appell says:

        You clearly don’t understand the nature of physical measurements.

        The annual temperature for any year is (I’m assuming) normally distributed, with a best estimate (0.50 C for 2016, 0.48 C for 1998) and, according to Roy, 2*sigma = test of statistical significance = 0.10 C. So sigma = 0.05 C.

        The rest of my calculation proceeds as above.

        • Bryan says:

          Dr. John Christy, director of the Earth System Science Center at The University of Alabama in Huntsville said;

          “Because the margin of error is about 0.10 C, this would technically be a statistical tie

          Christy is correct.

          You cannot claim more accuracy than your margin of error.

          This would be clear in any science other than the climate pseudoscience.

          If I handed in a lab report at university with a margin of error of a tenth of a degree yet claimed an accuracy to one hundredth a degree I would get an embarrassing fail.

          Perhaps you have a degree in climate pseudoscience?

          • David Appell says:

            Sorry, no.

            First of all, I’m calculating something different than whether the two numbers are “a statistical tie.” They aren’t — one is definitely larger than the other, and I calculated the probability that it is.

            Second, all of my figures are to two significant places, just like the data.

            Third, I suspect this uncertainty number of 0.10 C (2*sigma) is just a guess. Unless Roy took the time to take ALL the uncertainties in the input data and ALL the resulting uncertainties in the calculations, which would be quite difficult, the standard deviation of the monthly numbers (0.05 C) probably comes a sense of the spread of the monthly result as calculated by the UAH model. It’d be nice to know for sure.

            I stand by my 66%.

      • Bart says:

        Sorry, DA. Your math is appalling. This is not the way you do hypothesis testing. Not even close.

        • David Appell says:

          When you have nothing but name calling and no analysis of your own, your reply is what’s appalling.

          • Bryan says:

            David Appell

            Perhaps you do not have a science background so I will explain more fully.

            If I was carrying out a lab report on an experiment I was required to lay out the entire mathematics of determining the final margin of error in the reported results.
            This is called error analysis.

            The experiment may involve several components and sensors each with its own margin of error.
            For example the display might claim an accuracy of 0.01% and a sensor might have an accuracy of 0.1%
            Usually quoted as plus or minus a percentage.

            There may be several components to the experiment giving rise to a final calculation of a value or result.
            In such a case it is perfectly possible to find a value with more digits than can be justified by error analysis.
            The iron rule is you cannot claim to be more accurate than the final margin of error.

            So the result would be quoted with the redundant digits stripped out.
            Spencer and Christy would be bound to report that;

            Because the margin of error is about 0.10 C, this would technically be a statistical tie”

            To do otherwise would be professional suicide.

            Tim Folkerts and Mike M are physicists and broadly support the IPCC case.
            However I’m sure that now that the margin of error is known,that in this case the report is following standard practice.
            It would be good to raise the standard of debate instead of shouting at each other.

          • David Appell says:

            Bryan, I’m well aware of where final margins of error come from.

            “Because the margin of error is about 0.10 C, this would technically be a statistical tie”

            No it isn’t. See

            http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2017/01/the-statistical-tie-fallacy.html

            I don’t think the MOE of 0.10 C is right, either. I gather this number came from twice (appx 95% confidene limit) with the MOE on each number of 0.05 C.

            First, I wonder how that MOE was determined — by running all the raw data uncertainities through the UAH data model, or mostly a guess. (I have the same question about GISS’s data model, BTW.)

            Second, I think it’s too high.

            We really want to know the MOE of the *difference* of two numbers, T(2010)-T(1998). Using standard error analysis, that is not sigma*2, but sigma*sqrt(2) = 0.07 C.

            So the difference is (0.02 +/- 0.07) C. One can calculate the probability that difference is > 0, and the result will be that the probability that T(2010)>T(1998) is > 50%. Why wouldn’t UAH do that here?

          • Bryan says:

            David you still dont get it.

            Its not a matter of juggling around with statistics to get a most likely outcome.

            This might be appropriate with social studies as in your example but has nothing to do with physical science.

            I have given you the names of two physicists (who are broadly IPCC supporters) who when they look at my post will agree with it I’m sure because its very basic.

            For example, a display unit is capable of displaying accurately to 0.01% resolution is linked to a temperature sensor with 0.1% resolution accuracy.

            The high resolution display will not improve the accuracy of the temperature reading.

            Even though the display unit will appear to show more digits than is justified,the superfluous digits will have to be discarded.

            Please quote any physics,chemistry or engineering textbook that would agree with your method of dealing with the unavoidable error analysis of a physical measurement for the result to be valid.

            To quote election results is really a joke and you will not be taken seriously

          • Bart says:

            David is claiming that a juggle of 0.02 deg in an assumed 0.1 deg 1-sigma normal error distribution makes it 66% likely that the underlying mean has shifted upwards by 0.02 deg. It’s farcical. He hasn’t verified the distribution. He has no inkling of the underlying statistical model. He hasn’t even applied the F-test. His entire methodology is cockeyed. He’s just throwing something at the wall to see if it sticks.

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “David is claiming that a juggle of 0.02 deg in an assumed 0.1 deg 1-sigma normal error distribution makes it 66% likely that the underlying mean has shifted upwards by 0.02 deg.”

            No, sigma = 0.05 C

            “Its farcical.”

            More insults, still no analysis.

            “He hasnt verified the distribution.”

            Your gonna have to do better than that. Since I don’t have all the data, I can’t see the distribution. I’d be surprised if it wasn’t Gaussian. I assumed each annual temperture was normally distributed around its best estimate, with sigma=0.05 C

            “He has no inkling of the underlying statistical model. He hasnt even applied the F-test. His entire methodology is cockeyed. Hes just throwing something at the wall to see if it sticks.”

            No I’m not. My method agrees with similar results for polling data.

            Come back when you have your own analysis and can do more than meaningless ranting.

          • David Appell says:

            Bryan, it’s UAH who says sigma=0.05 C, not me.

        • Nate says:

          Bart,

          How bout this?

          We have two numbers, a, b, with Gaussian pdfs and sigma =.05, want to know prob that a is greater than b, or that a-b >0. So pdf of a-b is also a Gaussian with sigma (a-b) = sqrt(2) sigma =.07 and peaking at 0.02.

          Prob of a-b > 0 is area of pdf > 0. Agreed?? If so then prob is 61%.

          However useful that is..

          • Bart says:

            Nate – In the first place, the claimed sigma was 0.1, not 0.05. Next, the pdf is only Gaussian with sqrt(2) times the sigma if the error process is i.i.d, which has not been shown. Next, neutral ground is 50% probability, so even 61% would only be slightly better than even odds. Put in sigma = 0.1, and you get 58% (sigma = 0.05 would actually give 66%). That’s only 8 percentage points beyond a coin toss. There are better than 4 in 10 odds that a is less than b!

            Then, for the actual system we are arguing about, there is the autocorrelation of El Nino to consider. El Ninos come and go. Some are bigger. Some are smaller. It is essentially random where it peaks. So, you’ve got to take into account the variability of that as well, which pushes your sigma value well beyond 0.1 deg.

            Then, you have to consider the underlying natural pattern, and take that into account to see if there is any deviation from it. That pattern, which was in place long before CO2 could potentially have been a problem, is a steady rise coming out of the LIA plus an approximately 60 year cyclical component. When you remove that natural pattern, there is actually very little left that could be attributed to CO2 in the atmosphere.

            When you have done all that, you then can use that model to make a determination of whether there is a systematic change due to CO2. There are sophisticated tools available for doing that, much more involved than I can describe here. But, it is apparent by inspection that there is very little influence once you have accounted for everything as I have outlined above.

          • David Appell says:

            Bart says:
            “Nate In the first place, the claimed sigma was 0.1, not 0.05.”

            No, 0.1 C was the test for significance, presumably the 95% confidence limit, appx 2*sigma.

            Sigma for each annual temperature is 0.05 C, as Roy has written before on this blog.

            BTW: A calculation for polling data from two academic statisticians agrees nearly exactly with my 66%:

            http://davidappell.blogspot.com/2017/01/the-statistical-tie-fallacy.html

            (Roundoff error.)

          • David Appell says:

            Yes, Nate, I think that’s right, as I wrote below.

          • Bart says:

            You’re an idiot and a blackguard, Appell.

            http://www.steynonline.com/7661/the-craziness-of-the-climate-science-echo-chamber

            I showed in voluminous detail why you are wrong. You haven’t even chipped a full cube off the iceberg.

          • David Appell says:

            More ad hominem attacks Bart.

            That’s all the game you ever have.

          • Tim Folkerts says:

            Since my name came up … a couple quick comments.

            First, if a=0.5 and b=0.48, then a>b. Period. No statistics required.

            I suspect what Nate meant is something more like “We have two numbers, a=0.5, b=0.48, that we know a priori were drawn from two distributions (call them “A” and “B”) with Gaussian pdfs and sigma =0.05. We want to know prob that the mean of A (“mu_A”) is greater than the mean of B (“mu_B”), or that (mu_A)-(mu_B)>0.”

            Then the 61% probability quoted above sound about right. But this requires assumed knowledge of the distributions and assumed knowledge that the items were drawn randomly.

            Beyond the pure statistics, there are then the (to me) more important questions about drift in the sensors and changes in the data sets being used. Presumably these are one major source of the estimated uncertainties of 0.05 that have been quoted.

          • Bart says:

            Correct, Tim. I chose not to quibble.

            But, the more important deal is that there is an implicit assumption that both El Ninos are of equal intensity, and the only variation beyond CO2 induced warming is the instrument error. That alone renders the result wholly disconnected from reality.

            Moreover, not all the change would be due to CO2 induced warming – there are other influences upon temperature beyond El Nino and CO2. Many more.

            And, then you get into the problems you identify.

            If I took the analysis at DA’s word, I would simply counter with, “OK, 0.02 deg in 18 years is 0.011 deg/decade. Congratulations, you just proved AGW is negligible.” But, I didn’t do that, because the analysis is ridiculous on its face.

          • Bryan says:

            From

            https://www.google.co.uk/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&rlz=1C1AVNE_enGB620GB620&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=margin%20of%20error%20definition

            1.2.4 State units in the accepted SI format.

            There are several ways to write most derived units. For example: meters per second can be written as m/s or m s-1. It is important to note that only the latter, m s-1, is accepted as a valid format. Therefor, you should always write meters per second (speed) as m s-1 and meters per second per second (acceleration) as m s-2. Note that this applies to all units, not just the two stated above.

            1.2.5 State values in scientific notation and in multiples of units with appropriate prefixes.

            When expressing large or small quantities we often use prefixes in front of the unit. For example, instead of writing 10000 V we write 10 kV, where k stands for kilo, which is 1000. We do the same for small quantities such as 1 mV which is equal to 0,001 V, m standing for milli meaning one thousandth (1/1000).

            When expressing the units in words rather than symbols we say 10 kilowatts and 1 milliwatt.

            A table of prefixes is given on page 2 of the physics data booklet.

            1.2.6 Describe and give examples of random and systematic errors.

            Random errors
            A random error, is an error which affects a reading at random.
            Sources of random errors include:

            The observer being less than perfect
            The readability of the equipment
            External effects on the observed item
            Systematic errors

            A systematic error, is an error which occurs at each reading.
            Sources of systematic errors include:

            The observer being less than perfect in the same way every time
            An instrument with a zero offset error
            An instrument that is improperly calibrated
            1.2.7 Distinguish between precision and accuracy.

            Precision
            A measurement is said to be accurate if it has little systematic errors.

            Accuracy
            A measurement is said to be precise if it has little random errors.

            A measurement can be of great precision but be inaccurate (for example, if the instrument used had a zero offset error).

            1.2.8 Explain how the effects of random errors may be reduced.

            The effect of random errors on a set of data can be reduced by repeating readings. On the other hand, because systematic errors occur at each reading, repeating readings does not reduce their affect on the data.

            1.2.9 Calculate quantities and results of calculations to the appropriate number of significant figures.

            The number of significant figures in a result should mirror the precision of the input data. That is to say, when dividing and multiplying, the number of significant figures must not exceed that of the least precise value.

            Example:
            Find the speed of a car that travels 11.21 meters in 1.23 seconds.

            11.21 x 1.13 = 13.7883

            The answer contains 6 significant figures. However, since the value for time (1.23 s) is only 3 s.f. we write the answer as 13.7 m s-1.

            The number of significant figures in any answer should reflect the number of significant figures in the given data.

  37. Tim S says:

    It seems to the me that the real question is the relative strength of the 1998 and 2016 El Nino events in area, intensity, and duration. If the “Godzilla” El Nino of 2016 was stronger than 1998 as advertised, than the global temperature should have been affected in the same way.

    • argus says:

      Tim I agree, and to do that, comparing Jan 1 to Dec 31 may not even be the best way.

    • MarkB says:

      By ONI 1998 and 2016 were pretty close to equivalent. e.g. http://ggweather.com/enso/oni.htm

      • Tim S says:

        The peak is about the same, but the area under the curve is larger for 2016. Is that important?

        • MarkB says:

          Foster and Rahmstorf 2011 suggests that ONI lagged by about 5 months integrated over the calendar year as a first order approximation of the relative magnitude effect of El Nino events.

          To a second order, it seem plausible that prior warmth matters. If one were so motivated they could extend F&R with a autocorrelation term to investigate this.

          The more scientifically relevant parameter is the long term trend. Record warm years are more relevant as propaganda tools and it should surprise no one that that contrarians will minimize their significance and warmists will highlight them.

  38. ren says:

    The decrease in solar activity has a huge impact on ozone and air circulation in the stratosphere. This is particularly important over the poles where there is practically no tropopause and waves in the stratosphere directly affect the troposphere.
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/gif_files/time_pres_WAVE1_MEAN_OND_NH_2016.png
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/gif_files/time_pres_HGT_ANOM_OND_NH_2016.png
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/gif_files/time_pres_TEMP_ANOM_OND_NH_2016.png

  39. Entropic man says:

    I used woodforthetrees to get the linear trend for UAH6.0.

    http://woodfortrees.org/plot/uah6/plot/uah6/every/trend

    That is 0.45C in 37 years, 0.12C per decade.

    I also calculated how far the annual averages for 1998 and 2016 exceeded the trend.

    In 1998 the excess was 0.48-0= 0.48C. In 2016 the excess was 0.5C-0.25C = 0.25C

    This shows two things.

    Firstly, the 2016 El Nino was considerably weaker than 1998, so we are not comparing like with like.

    Secondly, the underlying UAH6.0 trend shows 0.25C warming since
    1998. With John Christy’s quoted 95% confidence limits of +/-0.1C that is statistically significant warming.

  40. barry says:

    Don’t see the importance in comparing calendar years when using anomalies. The warmest 12 months were from Dec 2015 to Nov 2016 at 0.52C

    • sod says:

      sorry, but you are using facts again. People following this topic do not want facts. They prefer fake news.

      They do not like surface temperature data. it shows too much warming. They do not look at longer periods or other periods in the satellite set, as they also do not show anything that can be compared to 1998.

      people here prefer the single datapoint (Jan-Dez 2016, which in comparison with 1998 still shows an increase. so the method of their choice is the “tie” intervention.

      None of them ever uses this bizarre concept. Imagine you had a great dinner. Bets you ever had or just tied with your birthday dinner 2 years ago? Best book list? Absurd, as obviously the top 10 is mostly tied with each other. And let us not get into sports. basically the whole “winner” concept is dead, when we add a +-2 goals error range to soccer results and call 90% of the games a tie…

  41. Steve Richards says:

    Gordon Robertson says:
    January 4, 2017 at 4:46 AM:

    Nitrogen has little radiative performance when compared to CO2 and H2O

    See: Thermal Radiative Transfer and Properties By M. Quinn Brewster

    Previews of this book are available via: https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=z_anVNTmQLUC&lpg=PA250&ots=118JAO5gvp&dq=radiative%20gases%20quantum&pg=PA250#v=onepage&q=radiative%20gases%20quantum&f=false

    Page 250 starts the explanation with quantum mechanics.

    Page 252 tells how nitrogen and oxygen do not react much to IR but CO2, H2O and others do and why they react and how the theory matches with physical tests that can be conducted to measure said sensitivity to IR.

    Page 259 goes into great detail about how CO2 and H2O react to IR photons: stretching, bending, stretching.

    Page 293 onwards contains some tables that indicate the effectiveness of H2O compared with CO2:

    Its all in the book, Gordon.

  42. ren says:

    Air from Scandinavia reaches Greece and Italy.
    http://images.tinypic.pl/i/00855/xynkpjs7qg90.png

  43. Sun Spot says:

    2016 warmest year eve, just more fake news. . .

  44. barry says:

    From way above:

    Fake news

    NOAA has perfected the art of obfuscating the temperature record by blatantly slashing 5000 surface stations from the global pool of 6500

    Fact

    NOAA researchers spent a few years in the 90s obtaining hand-written climate data from around the world from the bulk of weather stations that do not send their data to the US in the format used by NOAA, and digitised this information. All the while, the 1500 or so stations outside the US that continually report to NOAA in the usable format continued to do so.

    So NOAA didn’t slash stations. They added a great many that don’t report information to NOAA. That project ended in the mid-90s.

    http://tinyurl.com/hztu3jj
    [NOAA research paper detailing the data collection programs]

    Fake news takes a few seconds to read. Facts take longer.

  45. Scott says:

    The fact that “global warming” has changed to “climate change” in the realm of media discussion speaks volumes. Its really all anyone needs to know.

    • David Appell says:

      From Republican pollster Frank Luntz’s memo “Words that Work,” a which he wrote to Republicans urging them to use the term “climate change” instead of “global warming”:

      “”Climate change” is less frightening than “global warming”. As one focus group participant noted, climate change ‘sounds like you’re going from Pittsburgh to Fort Lauderdale.’ While global warming has catastrophic connotations attached to it, climate change suggests a more controllable and less emotional challenge.”

      “Frank Luntz “Straight Talk”: The Environment: A Cleaner, Safer, Healthier America” – memo to Bush Administration on communicating environmental issues, 2002
      http://www.politicalstrategy.org/archives/001330.php

    • Now, here we have an “argument” that uses innuendo instead of substance.

  46. David Appell says:

    Well worth reading, Roy:

    “The Myth Of The Statistical Tie,” David Drumm, jonathanturley.org, 10/6/2012
    https://jonathanturley.org/2012/10/06/the-myth-of-the-statistical-tie/

  47. David Appell says:

    and:

    “Margin of Error,” Kevin Drum, Washington Monthly, August 19, 2004.
    http://washingtonmonthly.com/2004/08/19/margin-of-error-3/

    The table he mentions is no longer on that page, but it can be found here:

    “One Last Encore for the Great “Statistical Tie” Fallacy,” Kevin Drum, Mother Jones, 10/3/12
    http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2012/10/one-last-encore-great-statistical-tie-fallacy

  48. Norman says:

    This article calculates climate sensitivity of Carbon Dioxide doubling at 0.43 C.

    The rest of the warming is from other causes. I have one I am working on at this time but have not calculated it yet.

    https://www.omicsonline.org/open-access/analytical-approach-to-calculate-the-heat-fluxes-in-the-atmosphere-and-to-quantify-the-sensitivity-of-earth-temperature-due-to-co2-2157-7625-S5-012.pdf

    This work matches what the CERES data shows and makes sense with Hottel’s work.

    http://fchart.com/ees/gas%20emittance.pdf

    • David Appell says:

      Junk.

      CO2 is only 45% higher, and the temperature has risen more than twice 0.43 C. And that’s with aerosol cooling.

      • Norman says:

        David Appell
        Junk? Or you are an idiot and are unable to follow the logic of the derived equations so you post your typical unthinking reactionary comment “Junk” with no thought or explanation as to why you think the work of these researchers is “Junk”. Looking at their material I would not call it “Junk” and they explain in the article (which of course you did not read or consider before you stupid mindless post).

        What aerosol cooling? The EPA cleaned up the air removing vast amounts of pollutants (sulfur dioxide) that were reflecting solar radiation before it reached Earth’s surface.

        Look at Hottel’s equations to see how empty your scientific thought process seems to be.

        Increasing Carbon Dioxide concentration does very little to the emissivity at the current levels.

        If you look at Roy’s chart of all the years, the highest non El Nino years were around 0.2 C above the zero line which fits fairly well with the article you call “Junk”.

        One thing I wish you would realize is you are not as intelligent as you think you are. You post some alarmist points and pat yourself on the back but will not even consider alternate intelligence.

        • David Appell says:

          Norman, did you even read the paper you’re hawking?

          The model is 1-dimensional.

          And not very realistic. From the paper:

          “In the present model, global mean parameters are used as constants,
          e.g. cloud height, relative humidity and Earth emissivity”

          “What aerosol cooling?”

          That around world — and not US-only.

          • Norman says:

            David Appell

            The paper’s primary purpose was not to make a realistic energy budget with all the factors. It was to find the radiation contribution of doubling Carbon Dioxide only. It made assumptions for those things not related to carbon dioxide. For the radiant energy increase caused by carbon dioxide alone it looks like they used Hottels’s work on emissivity of this gas. It does not go up much after a certain amount so it will not increase the downwelling IR (which is the only radiant component that can add extra energy to the surface).

            CERES data downwelling global average does show this. No increase in downwelling IR (all-sky) in 16 years. I know you somehow have concluded that the CERES graphs are my work so it is pointless to direct you to this link.

            Anyway thanks for looking at the paper. I don’t mind your views as long as they are based upon actual looking at what is posted. Wish you would do this with the CERES material. I would like to know your explanation of what is presented on this website (no increase in downwelling IR (all-sky) in 16 years and no increase in total flux (all-sky) in 16 years. To produce radiant warming you would have to have an increase in these two radiant fluxes.

            Good day to you. Hope you are having a Happy New Year working to convince everyone of the dire threat of Global Warming.

          • David Appell says:

            Norman:

            But the surface temperature increase is 0.9 C, twice that paper’s purported climate sensitivity to CO2.

            Yet CO2 has’t even increased by 50% yet, let alone doubled.

    • David Appell says:

      Norman wrote:
      “The rest of the warming is from other causes.”

      What other causes?