THERE has been some anecdotal evidence suggesting that last month, October 2008, was unusually cold. The sophisticated weather-watcher, of course, waits for some official global temperature data to be published before concluding very much.
Al Gore’s scientific advisor, James Hansen from NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), publishes a monthly mean global surface temperature.
Some dispute the methodology Dr Hansen uses to arrive at his monthly mean values, but nevertheless I have observed that his GISS data is usually somewhere in the vicinity of the data from the Hadley Centre at the UK Meteorology Bureau and the Satellite data compiled at the University of Alabama, Huntsville – though yes Dr Hansen’s data is usually on the warm side.
Furthermore, while many warmaholics, like Dr Hansen, claim the last ten years of no increase in global temperatures is insignificant in the scheme of things, they at least don’t deny the actual measurements and despite their protests, and media headlines continuing to suggest a climate crisis, their actual data shows no warming.
Then there was that recent article in one of the more prestigious journals suggesting global warming has probably stalled until at least 2015.
So, who would have expected a sudden spike in the global temperature record for October? Not me.
Contrary to the expectations of many climate change sceptics, and much to the delight of many warmaholics, the recently published GISS global temperature anomaly for October 2008 of 0.88C shows warming.
Not just a bit of warming, but to quote meteorologist Anthony Watts, the anomaly is the largest ever for October, and one of the largest anomalies ever recorded.
Some sceptics are claiming that the spike is a mistake, that it’s all to do with wrong temperature recordings in Russia. Dear oh dear, as long as it’s not a case of NASA attempting to correct again for the apparent recent cooling.
Anthony Watts is posting updates at his blog on the unfolding saga, including information direct from Dr Hansen’s GISS team.
Update November 13, 2008
The corrected temp anomaly now posted at the GISS site is 0.68C
The temp anomaly for October according to the UAH Satellite data is 0.167C
A big difference.
And so much for the anecdotal.
Update November 13, 2008 PM
It was thought that the issue with the GISS temperature anomaly for October related to the northern hemisphere, in particular, parts of Siberia. But the corrected map from the Hansen team, to accompany the corrected anomaly, now shows changes to Australia and the Canadian Arctic Islands in particular warming for October since Monday, November 10. Read more here.