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In the Wake of the News

Selective Analysis when Studying Climate Change

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are focused on anthropogenic CO2 and other “GHG” (greenhouse gas) emissions as the cause of recent global warming and climate change, to the virtual exclusion of other potential causes such as natural variation. Numerous climate researchers continue to conduct research on other potential influences on climate, including changes in the output of the sun, changes in cosmic radiation and the operation of multiple ocean phenomena. However, the IPCC has chosen to largely exclude the work of these researchers from their assessment reports. This focus on “GHGs” to the exclusion of other influences is selective analysis.

This tendency to selective analysis regarding climate change has also appeared in a different way in the analysis of extreme weather events, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding and droughts. The focus of the consensed climate science community has been on the concept that the recent increases in global temperature have somehow made these events more likely, or more devastating. Interestingly, this is the case in the face of data showing that the frequency and intensity of these events has not increased, or has decreased, during the period when anthropogenic emissions have increased. There has been no apparent attempt to understand how these anthropogenic emissions might have contributed to these reductions in frequency and intensity, such as the recent 12-year reduction in Atlantic hurricane intensity.

The consensed climate science community uses model-driven attribution studies to analyze the purported contribution of climate change on extreme weather. However, there is no observational evidence of such contributions. These attribution studies have not yet been used to analyze any potential contribution of climate change to reduced frequency and intensity of hurricanes and tornadoes. Similarly, attribution studies have not been used to analyze any potential contribution of climate change on the recent climate change hiatus.

A recent example of selective analysis is a study of the decreasing bird populations in the Mojave Desert, purportedly as the result of climate change, despite efforts to reduce climate change by installing wind turbines and solar power towers. The study largely ignores the impacts of these “Rapid Raptor Choppers” and “Rapid Raptor Roasters” on bird populations. There is no evidence of causation regarding climate change and the decline of bird populations, though there is obvious coincidence. However, there is clear and compelling evidence of causation regarding both wind turbines and solar power towers, from both personal observation of incidence and carcass counts.

Perhaps the most enduring example of selective analysis is the cavalier attitude of the consensed climate science community toward the issue of the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect. A recent analysis of the official temperature measurement stations in Japan visually documents the urbanization of the areas surrounding the stations in Google Earth aerial views. These sites are perhaps an extreme example of urbanization, but they certainly are not the only global temperature measuring sites significantly impacted by urban sprawl, or by the selection of airport sites which are already effectively urbanized.

 

Tags: Greenhouse Gas, IPCC, Consensus, Urban Heat Island, Climate Science

Highlighted Article: Global Warming Skepticism for Busy People

From: Roy W. Spencer, Ph. D.

I sometimes get asked for a concise and accessible summary of my skeptical views on global warming. After a year or more of thinking and writing, my new Kindle book Global Warming Skepticism for Busy People is meant to fill that need.

...

Maybe the best way to summarize what is in the book is to list the chapter titles:

Preface
1. Overview of the Reasons for Skepticism
2. The Five Big Questions
3. Skepticism versus Alarmism
4. The Unholy Alliance: Politics and Science
5. How Could 97% of Scientists Be Wrong?
6. What is the Greenhouse Effect?
7. What Causes Temperature Change?
8. The Good News about Increasing CO2
9. The U.N. IPCC Consensus: Government-Funded Biased Science
10. Climate Models Exaggerate Recent Warming
11. Warming since the 1800s Suggests Climate Models are Too Sensitive
12. How the Reliance on IPCC Climate Models Affects You
13. Why is Warming Not Progressing as Predicted?
14. Refuting Common Climate Delusions
Conclusions

Global Warming Skepticism for Busy People

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

The “Hard Edge” of the Climate Change Movement

The failure of the consensed climate change community (scientists, politicians and media enablers) to gain sufficient traction with their “scary scenarios” has led to the growing exposure of the “Hard Edge” of the climate change movement. The movement shares aspects of socialism, communism and fascism, but its iron fist is typically clad in a velvet glove.

A recent paper in Science Magazine, excerpted here, raises the issue of population policy, with particular emphasis on the situations in sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and Latin America. While the paper does not deal in detail with any specific population policies, it strongly recommends that the IPCC include the development of population policy in its next assessment report. This is a very thorny subject, since none of the approaches to achieving population control, no less population reductions, are particularly palatable. The only societally palatable approaches to moderating population growth which have proven successful are the combination of education and economic development. However, these approaches require long periods to become effective.

A recent article in the Guardian suggests that the Chinese model of “managed and directed capitalism” might be a better approach to advancing the goals of the climate change movement than the current Anglo-Saxon model of capitalism. The ability of a fascist / communist government to control industry and direct its efforts would be a more direct way to achieve the government’s goals and objectives. The success of this approach is clearly visible in the outstanding successes of the various Chinese and Soviet 5-year plans and of their communist economies in general.

Former US President Obama and others have suggested that climate change skeptics should not be allowed to hold public office, essentially excluding their voices from the political process. Others have suggested that skeptics be tried for a variety of crimes against society, including murder, and incarcerated.

Numerous plaintiffs have attempted to use the courts to achieve massive tort awards from corporations which produce and process fossil fuels, with the intent of diminishing their resources and driving them from their businesses. Other groups have aggressively promoted disinvestment of funds from corporations in the fossil fuel industries, again with the intent of diminishing their resources and driving them from their businesses.

The IPCC has effectively excluded skeptical scientific papers from inclusion in its assessment reports; and, has made efforts to prevent or inhibit their publication in the premier climate science journals. The IPCC has also effectively excluded scientific cautions present in its working group reports from the Summary for Policymakers. Since the last IPCC assessment report, thousands of peer reviewed papers questioning the consensus have been published, but none will be represented in the next IPCC assessment report.

Interestingly, the consensed climate science community is discovering that the current US Administration also has a hard edge. The Administration has exited the Paris Accords, eliminated funding for the Green Climate Fund, and substantially revised funding for EPA and other government funded climate research. This might prove to be “the unkindest cut of all”.

 

Tags: Consensus, Climate Skeptics, IPCC

Highlighted Article: The Great Climate Change Debate: William Happer v. David Karoly

From: Watts Up With That?

By: Andy May

The Great Climate Change Debate: William Happer v. David Karoly - 4 part series

  1. Part A - September 1, 2018
  2. Part B - September 2, 2018
  3. Part C - September 3, 2018
  4. Part D - September 3, 2018

 

Karoly summarizes as follows:

“Science has established that it is virtually certain that increases of atmospheric CO2 due to burning of fossil fuels will cause climate change that will have substantial adverse impacts on humanity and on natural systems. Therefore, immediate stringent measures to suppress the burning of fossil fuels are both justified and necessary.”

Happer’s key point is:

“Climate models don’t work. They have predicted several times more warming from greenhouse gas increases than has been observed.”

 

  1. Part A - September 1, 2018
  2. Part B - September 2, 2018
  3. Part C - September 3, 2018
  4. Part D - September 3, 2018
Tags: Highlighted Article

Global Greening

A recent study by a multinational group of scientists has determined that: “From a quarter to half of Earth’s vegetated lands has shown significant greening over the last 35 years largely due to rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide”. The study results are based on analyses of data collected by NASA and NOAA satellites. The authors estimate that approximately 70% of the greening is the result of increased CO2 fertilization.

Operating commercial greenhouses under enhanced CO2 conditions to enhance plant growth is a very common practice. Typical greenhouse CO2 levels range from 1000 – 1200 ppm. There have been attempts made in the past to demonstrate aerial fertilization of field crops, but they have achieved limited or no success because of the rapid mixing and dispersion of the CO2 in the open atmosphere.

The increase in atmospheric CO2 concentrations over the past ~70 years, from approximately 270 ppm to approximately 400 ppm has created the opportunity to study the effects of CO2 fertilization on a wide variety of plants, including field crops, grassland species and forest trees. These studies have shown that increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations not only increase plant growth, but also increase the efficiency with which numerous types of plants use water. This has significant implications for areas which receive limited rainfall and are either unsuitable for growing crops or require irrigation for successful crop growth.

Critics have been quick to point out that: “the ultimate benefit to crops has been small — and it doesn’t explain our modern agricultural revolution. The driving factor has to be the fertilizers, the seed varieties, the irrigation”. While this criticism is certainly valid, it is not reasonable to expect that the effects of a 50% increase in atmospheric CO2 concentrations would be as dramatic as the further increase of ~200% imposed in modern commercial greenhouses. However, it is reasonable to assume that the increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations have been a contributing factor to improved crop production, though the effect is not separately measurable.

The development of crop seeds optimized for the higher atmospheric CO2 levels could impact not only the amount of fertilizer required but also the amount of water required for the successful growing of high yield field crops. These effects could potentially both expand the land area suitable for high yield crop production by increasing the efficiency of water use and reduce the cost of crop production by reducing fertilization costs.

Plant growth is a complex process affected by numerous variables. It is critical that these variables and their interactions are understood to optimize crop plant selection and production. The ongoing increase in atmospheric CO2 concentrations offers both the opportunity to study these interactions and the challenge of optimizing them for each of the important field crops over the range of growing conditions experienced around the globe.

Increasing global population will continue to challenge the efficiency and effectiveness of agricultural production. Increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations will continue to play a role in meeting the challenge.

Tags: CO2 Emissions, Climate Science

Parsing The Washington Post on Climate

The Washington Post recently published an article entitled: Climate change is supercharging a hot and dangerous summer. The article has since also appeared in The Times-Picayune in New Orleans. The article is based on numerous broad, unsupported generalities.

The article begins with the assertion that: “This is a hot, strange and dangerous summer across the planet.” Summers are hot and hot weather can be dangerous, but that is hardly new or strange.

The article mentions wildfires in Greece and in Yosemite. It states that “scorching heat and high winds fueled wildfires”, though that is technically inaccurate, and implies that the heat and wind are exacerbated by climate change, though there is no evidence to support that implication.

The article goes on to state that: “The brutal weather has been supercharged by human-induced climate change, scientists say.” The “scientists” are not identified and there are numerous scientists who dispute such linkage.

The article also states that: “Climate models for three decades have predicted exactly what the world is seeing this summer.” While it is true that climate models have “predicted” (The IPCC now says: “projected”) warming for the past three decades, they have clearly not predicted “exactly” the situation this summer or any previous summer. The predominant climate model of three decades ago predicted more than twice the warming the globe is currently experiencing. The CMIP5 projections are also dramatically higher than current experience. Numerous scientists have recently acknowledged that the models are “running hot”. Clearly the article suggests an unjustified level of certainty.

The article further states that: “It's not just heat. A warming world is prone to multiple types of extreme weather - heavier downpours, stronger hurricanes, longer droughts.” The data does not support this assertion, as documented by Dr. Roger Pielke, Jr. Some scientists predicted permanent drought in the US southwest, though that prediction has been falsified.

The article quotes climatologist Katharine Hayhoe as follows: "You see roads melting, airplanes not being able to take off, there's not enough water". However, surface melting of blacktop road surfaces is not a new phenomenon related to climate change. It has been a fact of life in much of the US in summer for decades. To imply that it is a new phenomenon is intentionally misleading. While it has also been common for airlines to be required to reduce cargo loading and even passenger loading of their planes during summer in desert locations, the recent issue with flight cancellations in Phoenix is linked directly to a specific aircraft – the Bombardier Canadair Regional Jet (CRJ), which is only certified by the FAA for operation at temperatures below 118°F. The manufacturer made a series of economic decisions regarding the aircraft design and the purchasing airlines made a series of economic decisions regarding their aircraft selections. Water shortages in desert regions are hardly a new occurrence; and, they are exacerbated by growing populations in desert regions combined with inadequate preparation for water retention during “monsoon” periods in these locations.

The article also refers to the results of attribution studies as theory meets reality, though the attribution study results are hardly certain, as there are no observational data to support them. Model outputs are not reality.

Articles such as this are intended to promote an agenda. They do so by offering unsupported assertions as if they were facts. They do not advance understanding, though they can increase concern.

 

Tags: Climate Models, Climate History

Highlighted Article: The Fight Against Global Greening

 

From: Watts Up With That?

By: Kip Hansen

The Fight Against Global Greening - Series of 4 essays

 

  1. Part 1 - August 14, 2018
  2. Part 2 - August 15, 2018
  3. Part 3 - August 17, 2018
  4. Part 4 - August 19, 2018

 

Something odd happened between April 2017 and July 2018. I haven’t discovered exactly what prompted it but the rather good science writer and journalist, Carl Zimmer, seems to have flipped his wig. Well, at least he flipped his viewpoint on Global Greening.

 

In April 2017, Zimmer wrote a nice article for the New York Times titled “Antarctic Ice Reveals Earth’s Accelerating Plant Growth”. The article is a straightforward report on research performed by Dr. J. E. Campbell of the Sierra Nevada Research stitute, University of California in Merced, California (and others…) called “Large historical growth in global terrestrial gross primary production” published 5 April 2017 in the journal Nature.

 

Eric Worral did a WUWT news brief on the 30 July ’18 Carl Zimmer NY Times article. I thought the issue needed a little more attention — in fact, I thought it needed a series of four essays ...

 

  1. Part 1 - August 14, 2018
  2. Part 2 - August 15, 2018
  3. Part 3 - August 17, 2018
  4. Part 4 - August 19, 2018

 

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Parsing the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)

The Wall Street Journal recently published an opinion piece by Fred Krupp, the President of the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF). The piece was not accompanied by a disclaimer that the piece was the opinion of Mr. Krupp and did not necessarily represent the opinions of the EDF, so it is reasonable to assume that the piece is an EDF position.

The Krupp / EDF piece is both self-serving and misleading. It was written to advance the cause of imposition of a carbon tax in the US. It asserts that: “Climate change is a byproduct of the prosperity created by the market economy, …”. However, climate change predates the existence of any market economy anywhere on the globe. The earth’s climate has been changing, both warming and cooling, for the entirety of the history we have been able to study. It would have been accurate to assert that any anthropogenic component of climate change was, in part, a byproduct of the prosperity facilitated by the market economy.

The Krupp / EDF piece asserts that: “Public policy that puts a price on carbon emissions would speed adoption of clean energy by exposing the market to the costs this pollution puts on society.” The selection of the expression “carbon emissions” is intended to conjure an image of “dirty black stuff” polluting the atmosphere, rather than an image of an invisible gas which is known to absorb and reradiate infrared energy in the atmosphere. The piece suggests that sources of energy which emit carbon dioxide are not “clean-energy” because they emit carbon dioxide. The piece makes no reference to the positive impacts of increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations on global greening.

The Krupp / EDF piece asserts that: “Working with accurate scientific facts and the right incentives, the market will find winning solutions. So let’s follow the data and get this done.” However, the piece does not identify what it considers to be “accurate scientific facts”. Regrettably, the term “fact” is often used loosely in climate discussions. It is not likely that Krupp has ever seen the data he encourages us to follow. Rather, he has likely only seen “adjusted” data, which are merely estimates of what the data might have been had they been collected timely from properly selected, calibrated, sited, installed and maintained instruments. It is also unclear which version of the “accurate scientific facts” Krupp might have seen.

The Krupp / EDF piece asserts that: “Leading scientists’ predictions of temperature rise have been largely accurate.” While the predictions that temperatures would rise might have been accurate, the predicted magnitude of the rise was clearly not. Hansen’s “predictions” were high by a factor of approximately two. The “predictions” of the CMIP5 models have also been high by a factor of approximately two.

Prominent members of the consensed climate science community have recently acknowledged that the models are “running hot” and advocated for the establishment of a global temperature measurement network modeled after the USCRN (US Climate Reference Network), though Krupp fails to mention these facts.

Interestingly, while members of the consensed climate science community are referred to as “leading scientists”, scientists who question the consensus are merely referred to as “skeptics”.

 

Tags: Estimates as Facts, CO2 Emissions, Adjusted Data

Highlighted Article: Obama Carbon Colonialism and Climate Corruption Continue

 

From: Townhall

By: Paul Driessen and David Wojick

 

 

  1. PART 1 - August 11, 2018
  2. PART 2 - August 13, 2018
  3. PART 3 - August 14, 2018

 

It’s obscene enough when the Multilateral anti-Development Banks do it. But Trump agencies?!?

In a prime example of Deep State revanchism, despite the profound change in administrations, the US Agency for International Development is still funding and advancing anti-energy Obama-era climate change dogmas and policies for developing countries. USAID handles tens of billions of dollars a year, roughly half of all US foreign aid, so this climate alarmism puts literally millions of lives at risk.

USAID calls its “flagship” program “low emissions development.” Emissions of course means plant-fertilizing, life-giving carbon dioxide – but the term is intended to suggest dangerous climate changing pollution. The effect, if not the intent, is to deprive poor countries of the enormous life-enhancing benefits of abundant, affordable electricity and fossil fuels, which created the health and wealth Americans enjoy.

 

  1. PART 1 - August 11, 2018
  2. PART 2 - August 13, 2018
  3. PART 3 - August 14, 2018

 

Tags: Highlighted Article

Trump EPA Accomplishments & Challenges

The resignation of EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and the appointment of Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler presents an opportunity to review what has been accomplished at EPA and what challenges remain to be addressed.

 

Accomplished

 

  • “Secret Science”

Administrator Pruitt terminated the use of “secret science” by the EPA in the regulatory process. This decision raised concerns about the protection of information regarding individuals involved in the research projects. However, it is clear that the data, methods, analytical techniques and models used in the research can be made public to facilitate reproduction and validation without disclosing personal data of the participants.

EPA Ends The Use Of “Secret Science” In Crafting Regulations – Hot Air

 

  •  “Sue & Settle”       

EPA has terminated the use of the practice of “sue & settle” under which EPA assisted environmental activist groups in suing EPA, then settled the suits by adopting the regulations or practices advocated by the environmental groups.

Sue and Settle: Regulating Behind Closed Doors –US Chamber of Commerce

 

  • Paris Accords

President Trump notified the UN of the intent of the US to withdraw from the Paris Accords because the Accords uniquely disadvantaged the US; and, would ultimately be ineffective.

U.S. submits formal notice of withdrawal from Paris climate pact - Reuters

 

  •  “Green Climate Fund”

The US notified the UN that it would cease contributing to the UN Green Climate Fund. The GCF was intended to provide annual funding of ~$100 billion by 2020 to assist developing and not-yet-developing countries to reduce CO2 emissions. The Fund was slated to grow to $400-425 billion per year by 2030. The US contribution was to be ~25% of the total funding.

U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement: Reasons, impacts, and China's response - ScienceDirect

 

  • EPA Advisory Panel

Administrator Pruitt dissolved the EPA Advisory Panel, which was constituted of scientists, many of whom were also funded by EPA grants, in an apparent conflict of interest.

U.S. Government Disbands Climate-Science Advisory Committee – Scientific American

 

 

Remaining

 

  • Clean Power Plan

EPA has stated an interest in repealing the Clean Power Plan, which effectively prevents the construction of new coal generating stations and requires the closure of many existing plants. The emissions levels required under the CPP would require installation and operation of carbon capture and storage technology which is not currently commercially available and appears to significantly reduce plant efficiency.

Electric Utility Generating Units: Repealing the Clean Power Plan: Proposal - EPA

 

  • Endangerment Finding   

Administrator Pruitt had expressed interest in re-evaluating and potentially reversing the 2009 Endangerment Finding regarding CO2. The finding was based on IPCC modeled outputs, which have now been demonstrated to be inaccurate.

Trashing EPA's endangerment finding would be tough – E&E News

 

  • UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change)

The US is required under current US law to exit the UNFCCC, since that body has recognized the Palestinian Authority as a “state level” participant. This action has not yet occurred.

Why the U.S. Should Clexit and Pexit—Exit UNFCCC and Paris Climate Treaty – Cornwall Alliance

 

  • Discontinue funding international climate efforts

The US continues to fund UN climate change activities through the UNFCCC. It appears that this funding will be terminated in the 2019 federal budget.

Trump Budget Would Cripple U.S. International Climate Change Work – Inside Climate News

 

  • Tiger Teams           

EPA should work with NOAA and NASA to launch tiger teams to conduct a detailed review of the climate change activities of those agencies. One focus of these teams would be the continual changes in the historical climate record by these agencies.

What is a Tiger Team Approach? - Trextel

 

  • Red Team - Blue Team

Administrator Pruitt advocated an open climate change debate using a Red Team – Blue Team approach. This open debate has not occurred and there is significant confusion regarding Administration support for such an effort.

Red team-blue team exercise will expose the junk science that filled Obama's EPA – The Hill

 

The Administration has accomplished much in its first 18 months, particularly at EPA under Administrator Pruitt. However, much remains to be done at EPA under the direction of Acting Administrator Wheeler.

 

“It ain’t over till it’s over.” - Yogi Berra, American philosopher

 

Tags: Clean Power Plan, Donald Trump, EPA, EPA Endangerment Finding, Red Team Blue Team Debate, Paris Agreement, United Nations

How Do We Scare Them About Climate Change Now?

Question:

What are the committed political science community, the consensed climate science community and the complicit media science community to do if the tens of millions of dollars spent on the creation of climate model based “scary scenarios” is not enough to scare the voting public into demanding drastic measures to save the planet from the projected “climategeddon”?

Answer:

Commit additional millions to fund additional studies to produce additional, even scarier scenarios to be broadcast with even greater feigned certainty of future devastation. What else?

The following is a mere sampling of the most recent “even scarier scenarios” intended to free us from our malaise and spur us into demanding action.

The consensed climate science community and their funders and cheerleaders apparently do not understand, or simply choose to ignore, that the voting public in the US has reached climate crisis saturation. Previous disaster predictions have failed to materialize, no matter how often and how hysterically the “Chicken Littles” have announced that “the sky is falling”.

Meanwhile, weather persists. Winter is cold, with snow. Summer is hot, with thunder storms. Floods and droughts occur. Hurricanes, tropical storms and tornadoes continue to form. Some climate scientists claim that anthropogenic climate change makes all of these weather events more frequent, more intense, more damaging and more life threatening. However, the data do not support such claims.

Of course, the creation of the “even scarier scenarios” has not stopped the creation of silly “scary scenarios”, such as those listed below.

 

Meanwhile, what we should be doing now remains undone. Climate data are still suspect, as the result of installation issues, “adjustment” and “infilling”. Climate models remain unverified and continue to “run hot”. Climate sensitivity is still undetermined. Cloud forcings are still uncertain. The differences between surface-based and satellite-based sea level rise measurements remain unresolved, as do the differences between near-surface and satellite temperature measurements.

These unresolved scientific issues are far more important that the “scary scenarios”, which are built on the unresolved scientific issues.

The current situation is reminiscent of the approach demanded by the Queen of Hearts in the trial scene from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll”:

                                    “Sentence first – verdict afterward”

It seems hardly scientific and equally silly to demand “verdict first – evidence afterward”, as appears to be the case with current climate science, at least from the perspective of the political science community and their cheerleaders in the media.

However, when all else fails, there always remains the old trial lawyers’approach:

“When the facts are on your side, pound the facts. When the law is on

your side, pound the law. When neither is on your side, pound the table.”

 

Tags: Climate Science, Climate Change Debate, Climate Change Myths

Temperature Measurement Bias

The evolution of ambient temperature measurement technology has exposed several fundamental biases in the measurements taken to monitor changes in the climate. These biases must be quantified and compensated for to maintain the integrity of the historical temperature measurement record.

The US Climate Reference Network (CRN) is the most advanced network of ambient temperature measurement stations currently in use. The CRN stations were sited remotely to eliminate or minimize the potential impact of their surroundings on the representativeness of the ambient temperature measurements. Each station includes three high precision resistance temperature devices (RTDs) installed in fan aspirated radiation shield enclosures to assure constant air flow over the sensors, regardless of ambient wind conditions. The photo below shows a typical CRN location.

 

CRN Weather Station

 

Measurements taken by the CRN stations were compared with measurements taken with the Maximum Minimum Temperature Systems (MMTS) collocated with the CRN stations. These tests demonstrated significant measurement biases with the MMTS, particularly under conditions of high solar radiation and minimum ambient wind speed. These biases are believed to result from the fact that the MMTS relies on natural convection to induce air flow over the sensors. The MMTS are also subject to additional bias as the reflectivity of the enclosure degrades due to weathering and ultraviolet degradation. The photo below shows a typical MMTS.

 

MMTS Thermometer Enclosure

 

The MMTS came into common use for climate temperature measurement in the 1980s, replacing the Cotton Region Shelter (CRS) or Stevenson Screen with liquid-in-glass thermometers, which had been the measurement station of choice for most of the 20th century. The photo below shows a typical CRS.

 

CRS Thremometer Enclosure

 

The major disadvantages of the CRS include the requirement for a person to manually read the thermometers accurately at the proper time and the weather-driven deterioration of the reflectivity of the enclosure coating. The CRS produced biases are believed to result from its reliance on natural convection to induce air flow over the sensors and the heat storage capacity of the wooden box.

Measurements taken by CRN stations located relatively close to MMTS and CRS measurement stations are relied upon to verify the procedures used to correct for biases present in the MMTS and CRS stations. However, correcting known or suspected biased readings is less desirable than taking accurate readings in the first instance. This has recently resulted in calls for the development of a global land surface climate fiducial reference measurements network.

There has been a somewhat similar evolution in sea surface measurement approaches. Originally, sea surface temperature measurements were taken by lowering buckets of various construction from the decks of ships, allowing the buckets to fill with water, raising the buckets to the deck, immersing thermometers into the buckets to measure water temperature and then removing the thermometers from the water to read them and record the readings. This method was and is fraught with potential errors. More recently, many ships are equipped with temperature measuring devices located in the engine cooling water inlets. However, these readings are biased by the temperature conditions surrounding the cooling water inlets. Also, the water depth at which the samples are taken is a function of how heavily the ship is loaded, since the cooling water inlets must be located sufficiently below the Plimsoll line that they are beneath the water line when the ship is lightly loaded. Therefore, under normal operating conditions, the water temperature measured is not the surface temperature, but rather the temperature several feet below the surface, disturbed by the ship’s bow wake.

Deployment of drifting and moored buoys provides more accurate and reliable temperature measurement at the surface. These buoys have exposed the warm bias in the shipborne measurements. The more recent deployment of the Argo buoys has also facilitated measurement of sea temperatures at depth, providing valuable information regarding heat storage in the oceans.

The principal bias of the US CRN and the buoy-based measurements is accuracy. These stations are also used to check the accuracy of the satellite-based measurements, whose principal bias is comprehensive geographical coverage. These are highly desirable and valuable biases.

 

Tags: Temperature Record, US Climate Reference Network (CRN), Bias
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