Sunday, July 8, 2012

About this "record global warming"

Not so much, actually:

So we see that the definition of "Record Heat is proof of Global Warming" is "It's hot in the United States east of the Mississippi river."  Man, that's one scientifically grounded view of weather vs. climate.  Not parochial at all - nope, no ignorance of what else is going on in the world ...

Oh, and you know that the weather in London for the Olympics is miserable, right?  Cold, overcast, thoroughly unpleasant.  Me, I blame Global Warming.

I guess that this is the point where I once again have to complain that the data being used are lousy, and that 102° today is not the same as 102° in 1941.  The reason is that 80% of the temperatures you hear reported are taken at the airport.  For example, here is Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport:

By reasonable measures, the busiest airport in the world.  The weather station here is heavily referenced in the news reports for the recent record high temperatures.  But the airport didn't always look like this, for example back in the 1930s it looked positively pastoral:

You remember the 1930s, right?  The Dust Bowl days?  It was hot back then.  So why isn't 102° today the same as 102° back then?

Because you didn't have thirty times as much concrete and asphalt soaking up the burning summer sun.  Instead, you had fields of grass.  You can do an experiment: go out and stand in your driveway.  Then stand on your lawn.  Which feels hotter?

It's worse, actually - the 1930s didn't have a thousand jet airplanes belching hot jet exhaust.  You can do an experiment here, too: go stand next to your air conditioning compressor.  Then go stand on the other side of your yard, away from it.  Which feels hotter?

We're not measuring the same environment, even though the thermometer is in the same place.  So how are the modern readings corrected for this "urban heat island" effect?  Nobody says.

The data is a mess, and are completely unreliable for detecting a tenth of a degree change per decade.  So everyone chill out about the "Global" "record" heat, OK?


GuardDuck said...

I referenced your global warming 101 series to my 'favorite' liberal blogger. He wasn't impressed.

His quote was most of his arguments are the same as all the rest on right wing blogs...half truths, lies, and (ahem) hand waving. I don't define "using my brain" as believing the emotional outpourings of a self admitted non scientist whose blog kills fascists (nope, no juvenile behavior here...please move along).

Thought you'd get a kick out of that.

Borepatch said...

GuardDuck, please pass on to your Liberal Blogger (with my compliments, natch!) that I am humbled by his iron clad logic, and humiliated by his incisive point-by-point refutation of my poor arguments. Clearly, he must have gone to an Ivy League school.


ProudHillbilly said...

Spot on spot on! And I love your comment to GuardDuck!

Climate and weather are not the same thing, and what we are having right now in the US is hot weather. At some time in the future we will have cold weather. That will be declared the fault of global warming and George W. Bush as well.

The best statement I've read concerning weather is that is all of the innumerable systems of the Earth trying to reach an equilibrium. Which it can never do as long as the Earth remains a spinning orb covered with an atmosphere.

Critter said...

question: does this have anything to do with the old hole in the ozone layer? i haven't heard much about the hole in a few years. is that still a thing?

libertyman said...

I thought acid rain was the end of the world, but that was after the new ice age (wasn't that a 1970s thing?). The ozone layer must have been fixed by getting rid of Freon, I guess

Didn't that ozone hole melt the Antarctic, too?

Perhaps more hand waving will fix global warming?

RabidAlien said...

Heh. Used to go out to a park near Round Rock, Texas, to run and/or do some photography. I swear, it was always about 10 degrees cooler out in the park than it was in town, and usually pretty breezy, too. I'd throw a light jacket in my car when I went...this from a guy who's known to wear short-sleeved shirts and leave his jacket at home when its 55F outside.

bradley13 said...

Bingo. After a pretty nice Spring, it's been a cool and rainy summer here so far. We'd like a bit of that heat, please send it along. Thanks...