Beware the Global Surface Temperature Record: A Note from Vincent Gray
I received the following note* from Vincent Gray. He began by wishing us all “the compliments of the season” and then lauched into a discussion of mean global surface temperature records:
The theory that “Climate Change” is caused by increases in carbon dioxide stands or falls on the reliability of the “mean global surface temperature record” as compiled by the three compilers, Hadley Centre (UK) , GISS (Goddard Institute of Space Studies), USA, and GHCN (Global Historic Climatology Network), USA.
But how reliable is it?
There are enormous changes in the numbers of weather stations used for compilation of the “suface record” at different periods. In 1900 there were 1500, in 1980 there were 6000 and in 1998 there were 2700.
The averages are taken from “grid boxes” made up of 5ºx5º latitude/longitude squares on a Mercator map. Out of a possible total of 2,592 grid boxes, there were 300 available In 1900, 850 in 1980 and 500 in 1998. However, these were not distributed uniformly. There was a high density in the USA and in Western Europe and vast gaps in Africa, South America, India and Siberia. Antarctica had none until fairly recently.
Then there is the reliability for individual weather stations to record temperature trends.
The following website gives photographs of a large number of official weather stations, all of which are obviously unsuitable for recording long term trends. One is even on top of a building:
Cheers, Vincent Gray
* I have shortened and edited ‘the note’.
Also by Vincent Grey:
“The Cause of Global Warming”, Energy and Environment 11 pages 613-629, 2000,
“Regional Climate Change” at http://www.john-daly.com/guests/regional.htm.