Awesome Analysis of Urban Biases on Surface Temperature Records

A kid and his dad manage to do the analysis that NASA, the EPA, the CRU, and the IPCC can't be convinced to perform.  Awesome.

  • Who peer reviewed this study? How dare he question settled science and the global consensus? How much did he receive from Big Oil to produce this?

    I remain highly skeptical...

  • Frederick Davies

    I have only one comment to make:

    Directed to the IPCC and all those idiots in Copenhagen right now: "See, it's not Rocket Science, bollocks!"

  • chembot

    Good presentation. Would have been neat if they included temperature increase vs. population increase graph or something else of the sort that relates the size of the city to the total temperature change.

  • Mesa Econoguy

    Nice Pat Metheny soundtrack.

  • bearpaw

    Aw c'mon --- it CAN'T be that easy!
    Can it?

  • Michael

    Ross McKitrick and Patrick Michaels(2003) tried it the hard way. With a model. They took a good beating for using degrees rather than radians (Do economists even know of radians?) and therefore the land use to measured temperature concept was considered discredited.

    Though the name escapes me, I do remember a little bird whispering something about UHI to Jones back in 2001.

  • O Bloody Hell

    A science fair project, it looks like.

    The kid probably deserves First prize, but, by daring to attack the field of Goebbels Warming, probably managed to get a unique censure from the prize committee typically reserved for Science Fair projects that attempt to justify Eugenics or Lysenkoism -- and totally unlike that kid who did a baking soda volcano and still got a "blue ribbon"... everyone gets an award these days, you know... unless their project is clearly unPC.

  • sierra

    Good presentation. I also enjoy the relaxed background music, not to mention the dad's let-me-slow-it-down-for-you tone, which reminds me of Al Gore. However, it appears unclear on one point. When downloading the data from the NASA site, you're presented the following options:

    * raw GHCN data+USHCN corrections
    * after combining sources at same location
    * after homogeneity adjustment

    If they used data that's already been corrected or homogenized, then their analysis is valid; otherwise it just proves there's such a thing as an urban heat island effect, which we already know. If there's an indication what form of data they used, I missed it. If not, it's easy to test.

  • PaulD

    I enjoyed the presentation. One question I am not sure about. I understand that some of the temperature data sets have adjustments for UHI effects and other temperature influences. In this presentation, were they using raw data or "adjusted" data?

  • chris

    Even if they are using the raw data, the rural sites appeared to have no warming. Coyote has pointed out that the "adjustment" methods are suspect - basically averaging the corrupt urban change with the rural non-change to still paint a picture of some change.

  • Henry Bowman

    The major point here is that the rural sites showed no temperature increase. Yes, the UHI effect is well-known, but really only qualitatively. Corrections for the UHI effect are often suspect.

    If the rural sites show no increase, one conclusion is that increased carbon dioxide has thus far had no measurable effect, at least not in the U.S. Similar studies on a planetary scale show more-or-less the same result. The conclusion is that CO2 is a minor player, which seems to be a mighty important conclusion.

  • Alexander Goristal

    Henry Bowman wrote: "...one conclusion is that increased carbon dioxide has thus far had no measurable effect"

    Ah, this paper may be worth a quick browse:
    "Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics"
    Gerlich (Institut fur Mathematische Physik) & Tscheuschner
    http://xxx.lanl.gov/PS_cache/arxiv/pdf/0707/0707.1161v4.pdf

    -AleG

  • Johann

    Since their process does not show the overall increase in temperature, it is clearly flawed. They need to add a fudge factor.

  • Tim

    It seems they demonstrated the heat island effect but didn't take the analysis any further to demonstrate an urban bias in overall surface temp records.

  • tomw

    Read the similar findings, well somewhat, at:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/08/the-smoking-gun-at-darwin-zero/

    "The smoking gun at Darwin Zero"

    Seems CRU adjusted the Darwin data when it made no sense. Could it be that they wanted to find a positive temperature change?

  • joe buzz

    They better not be counting on any funding for these distractions.
    Tim, is it not fairly obvious that once a "researcher" combines the urban and the rural data, the urban bias would be influencing the overall surface temp data set?

  • Cathy

    Kudos. Very well done. Simple and easy to understand.
    ...AND I too loved the Pat Metheny music. THANKS!

  • Boludo Tejano

    Coyote: did you do the video?

  • Tim

    @Joe buzz:

    Either I don't understand some jargon being used or the language is a little misleading. They showed that urban temperatures are higher than rural ones. However, their research assumes both of those temperature readings are valid data points for their location. A national bias toward the urban temps or rural temps could be introduced if the balance between urban and rural land use wasn't considered (and it likely wasn't), but this research didn't ask that question.