Climatologist Dr. Judith Curry: ‘Attempts to spin 2014 as a possible ‘warmest year’ is spin designed to influence the Lima UN deliberations’
By Dr. Judith Curry, former Chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology
Spinning the ‘warmest year’
by Judith Curry
The buzz is intensifying about 2014 possibly being the warmest year globally in the historical temperature record.
The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) issued a Press Release on 3 Dec:2014 on course to be one of the hottest, possibly hottest, on record. Excerpts:
WMO’s provisional statement on the Status of the Global Climate in 2014indicated that the global average air temperature over land and sea surface for January to October was about 0.57° Centigrade (1.03 Fahrenheit) above the average of 14.00°C (57.2 °F) for the 1961-1990 reference period, and 0.09°C (0.16 °F) above the average for the past ten years (2004-2013).
If November and December maintain the same tendency, then 2014 will likely be the hottest on record, ahead of 2010, 2005 and 1998. This confirms the underlying long-term warming trend. It is important to note that differences in the rankings of the warmest years are a matter of only a few hundredths of a degree, and that different data sets show slightly different rankings.
“The provisional information for 2014 means that fourteen of the fifteen warmest years on record have all occurred in the 21st century,” said WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud. “There is no standstill in global warming,” he said.
“What we saw in 2014 is consistent with what we expect from a changing climate. Record-breaking heat combined with torrential rainfall and floods destroyed livelihoods and ruined lives. What is particularly unusual and alarming this year are the high temperatures of vast areas of the ocean surface, including in the northern hemisphere,” he said.
“Record-high greenhouse gas emissions and associated atmospheric concentrations are committing the planet to a much more uncertain and inhospitable future. WMO and its Members will continue to improve forecasts and services to help people cope with more frequent and damaging extreme weather and climate conditions,” said Mr Jarraud.
The provisional statement was published to inform the annual climate change negotiations taking place in Lima, Peru. WMO also updated its acclaimed Weather Reports for the Future series, with scenarios for the weather in 2050 based on the Fifth Assessment report from the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change, which is co-sponsored by WMO and the UNEP. Newly added reports
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—Construction, nearly 20 percent of the footprint.
—Jet fuel burned by the estimated 11,000 delegates and observers who flew in from abroad. About 30 percent.
—Local transportation. Organizers hired more than 300 buses since there are no public transit services to the venue. All burn fossil fuels. About 15-20 percent.
—Electricity, solid waste treatment, water, paper, food, disposable plates and cups, keeping 40,000 police on high alert. The balance.
A more accurate carbon footprint will be published after the conference and certified by the Spanish company Aenor, organizers say. U.N. volunteers have been polling delegates on their air travel in search of precision.
The conference’s green components are meager.
Peruvian Environment Minister Manuel Pulgar-Vidal asked for a bicycle parking lot. He got it, but only about 40 people use it daily. Most delegates spend about an hour in traffic traveling less than 6 miles (10 kilometers) from their hotels.
Blame that, in part, on the army. It initially balked on letting in bikes even though only the credentialed can enter the base known as “El Pentagonito.”…
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