Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Pouring Salt On Climate Critics "Contaminated" Wounds

Over at our sister site we've listed some very strong evidence that heat islands do not impact NASA's surface temperature records. Some of the evidence includes two independent satellite system that show the same temperature trend as the surface stations

and the observation that most of the warming is occurring at the north pole (far away from major cities).

One would think that obvious conclusion is that global warming is real and is not a set of false readings caused by urban heat islands.

Despite this, climate change critics (the word critic does not distinguish between denier and skeptic) Anthony Watts and Steve McIntyre have been harshly criticizing the surface record. They've been on a nation wide effort to photograph and critique every surface station in the US. Out of 1,221 surface stations they've already photographed and cataloged 33.09% of them. The stations have been ranked anywhere from class 1 (best) to class 5 which are described as:
Class 5 (error >= 5C) - Temperature sensor located next to/above an artificial heating source, such a building, roof top, parking lot, or concrete surface."
Professor Eli Rabett recently pointed out that John V, over at Climate Audit, analyzed the temperature records of the worst stations and the best stations.

As you can see from the picture above NASA's temperature trend (black) matches closely with both the best (red) and the worst (green) temperature stations. It would appear that even the most "contaminated" stations the climate critics use to refute global warming (whether or not they are actually part of NASA's temperature record) do a surprisingly decent job of reporting temperature trends. Clearly the surface stations are tough little instruments. It is also wise to notice that the best (red) stations match NASA's readings (black) with very high precision.

So I decided to create to see just how tough these stations are. will be posting pictures of the class 5 surface stations, their USHCN identification number, GHCN identification number and the official critique/description. Each picture will also come with a link to so you can see all of the pictures relevant to that station. will post 10 stations at a time until the original 58 class 5's are all posted. Remember, these are the worst of the worst. Since NASA uses satellite photos to remove stations that are near bright lights I will try and figure out which of these stations (if any) are a part of NASA's official temperature record.

Station #1:
Photo not available

Station #2
electronics package within 8" of sensor, asphalt 20'

For those that can't tell the box in the bottom right is a battery.

Station #3
41758 - 72290002
building/asphalt/vehicles about 3 meters away

Station #4
42910 - 72594000
building/asphalt @ 10 & 5 meters away, tree shading

Station #5
43747 - 74702001
building/asphalt @ 2 meters away large parking lot

Station #6
43761 - 72597002
building/asphalt/vehicles about 2 meters away

Station #7
building/asphalt/vehicles about 2 m away, shading

Station #8
44713- 74501004
building 3 meters away, over rock/boat metal tower

The old location of the sensor:

And the new location of the sensor (on the tower)

Station #9
asphalt about 3 m away, building 10 m

Station #10
asphalt 1 m away, buildings with a/c unit 3 m

Station #11
building w/ac unit about 3 meters away, asphalt 2 m


Unknown said...

What would be more useful would be to go through all the 70 "best" stations as ranked by and then rank them on the basis of 1970s average temperature vs. 2000s average temperature and post a photo of them along with a temperature graph.

Watts loves to cherry pick horribly placed surface stations alongside graphs showing temperature going up, and good temperature stations alongside graphs with the temperature going down. Taking all the high quality stations and displaying them all equally without any cherry picking would probably be educational.

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Bruno Tyner said...

Climate models predict that as the surface warms, so should the global troposphere. Globally, the troposphere should warm about 1.2 times more than the surface; in the tropics, the troposphere should warm about 1.5 times more than the surface.

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