2007 Coldest Year Since 1998?

The final numbers will reportedly be out in March, but the initial information makes it look as if 2007 will be the coldest in a decade. So much for the claim that "There is a 60 percent probability that 2007 will be as warm or warmer than the current warmest year, 1998." [Note: it was found later last year that the warmest year in the US was 1934.] Of course, as noted here earlier, 100 prominent scientists recently released a letter saying that "there has been no net global warming since 1998." See also here for a similar comment by someone else. Of course, for a list of 400 scientists who dispute that any significant temperature changes are due to man please see this.

Meanwhile Sweden is taking the lead in silliness:

A Swedish university has received $590,000 in research funds to measure the greenhouse gases released when cows belch.

About 20 cows will participate in the project run by the Swedish University for Agricultural Sciences in Uppsala, about 40 miles north of Stockholm, officials said Monday.

Cattle release methane, a greenhouse gas believed to contribute to global warming, when they digest their food. Researchers believe the level of methane released depends on the type of food the eat. . . .

Sonya Jones has a note about the craziness that is gripping state legislatures over this issue.


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Anonymous Steve said...

What makes me so skeptical about AGW is how only data that fits the script gets publicized. I link to a blog of one of the founder of Weather Underground who claims 2007 was the 5th warmest for the globe & 10th for the US (1998 still #1).

Wait a second, I thought. Didn't NASA just release revised figures that put 1934 as the warmest year in the US? Apparently, he uses different data from NCDC because it fits the script.


1/21/2008 8:55 PM  
Anonymous bob said...

John, Sweden is behind the curve. I'm a farmer out here in Idaho(attended your talk at U of Idaho) and years ago I asked my neighbor, who worked in Ag Sciences, 'what are doing these days?'

His reply--'Measuring cow farts.' It took him a while to convince me he wasn't pulling my leg. I don't know the results of the study.

1/21/2008 10:34 PM  
Blogger El NiƱo said...

Looks like someone else is taking the lead in silliness in computing 9-year trends... which we all know are mindlessly irrelevant to the climate change debate, concerned with decades-to-centuries.

Besides, i don't really know what you mean my "eminent". I'd love to see anyone on there that actually knows anything about climate.

Freeman Dyson surely is eminent. Whether he understands anything at all about climate is a very different question..

One could cite a list of 600 eminent climate scientists who believe that global warming is *not* a scam. It's called IPCC.
But I have the strange hunch that it would not fit your script...

1/22/2008 1:56 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

John, I'll bet you $5,000 that the warmest year in the last 100 years was not in the 1930s, as you say, but one of the years from 1998 onward, with the specific year depending on the particular instrumental record we look at.

Of course, I assume you mean global average, not cherry-picking some small portion of the globe....

1/23/2008 11:37 AM  
Blogger John Lott said...

From the WSJ (August 29, 2007) regarding US temperatures:

The latest twist in the global warming saga is the revision in data at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, indicating that the warmest year on record for the U.S. was not 1998, but rather 1934 (by 0.02 of a degree Celsius).

Canadian and amateur climate researcher Stephen McIntyre discovered that NASA made a technical error in standardizing the weather air temperature data post-2000. These temperature mistakes were only for the U.S.; their net effect was to lower the average temperature reading from 2000-2006 by 0.15C.

The new data undermine another frightful talking point from environmentalists, which is that six of the 10 hottest years on record have occurred since 1990. Wrong. NASA now says six of the 10 warmest years were in the 1930s and 1940s, and that was before the bulk of industrial CO2 emissions were released into the atmosphere.

Those are the new facts. What's hard to know is how much, if any, significance to read into them. NASA officials say the revisions are insignificant and should not be "used by [global warming] critics to muddy the debate." NASA scientist Gavin Schmidt notes that, despite the revisions, the period 2002-2006 is still warmer for the U.S. than 1930-1934, and both periods are slightly cooler than 1998-2002.

Still, environmentalists have been making great hay by claiming that recent years, such as 1998, then 2006, were the "warmest" on record. It's also not clear that the 0.15 degree temperature revision is as trivial as NASA insists. Total U.S. warming since 1920 has been about 0.21 degrees Celsius. This means that a 0.15 error for recent years is more than two-thirds the observed temperature increase for the period of warming. NASA counters that most of the measured planetary warming in recent decades has occurred outside the U.S. and that the agency's recent error would have a tiny impact (1/1000th of a degree) on global warming.

1/24/2008 3:55 AM  

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