2006 – A Key Year For My Understanding Of Climate

January 2006 was very warm in the US.  I remember sitting outside in shorts and a t-shirt and thinking that global warming was the cause. That summer I drove through Sacramento, California at 115 degrees. Global warming was looking bad!  But a few weeks later the weather turned cold and wet, and Fort Collins had their largest snowstorm on record during Christmas Week that year.

Since 2006, January temperatures in the US have plummeted, and the frequency of cold nights has skyrocketed. The century trend for January temperatures in the US is downwards.

I first heard about global warming in 1980 while working at Los Alamos National Labs. It turned out that the warming from 1979 to 2006 was not a linear trend, rather it was one arm of a cycle. In 2008 I wrote my first climate article in The Register, showing how temperature data was being altered by government agencies.

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9 Responses to 2006 – A Key Year For My Understanding Of Climate

  1. Jeff May says:

    Keep up the good work Tony.
    We are going nuts here in Canada with carbon taxes!

    • BallBounces says:

      For every penny that goes into a carbon tax, a little bird sings. Make the birdies sing, Jeff, make them sing!!!

      • Squidly says:

        And for every rotation of a windmill, one of your singing birdies dies!

        And for every hour of solar power, another dozen of your birdies fries!

        At this rate, it won’t be long and it’s going to be awfully quiet!

  2. Nicholas Schroeder, BSME, PE says:

    Why RGHE doesn’t work.

    The notion that 288 K – 255 K = 33 C is the difference in the surface temperature with and without an atmosphere is nonsense as is the misapplied S-B BB heat radiation theory that attempts to explain it. Planck said that a limitation to heat radiation theory is that the surface absorbing and radiating must be large compared to the wavelength of the radiation. That’s a brick wall and NOT atmospheric molecules. This is where the RGHE proponents must be challenged. If 288 – 255 = 33 doesn’t work, none of RGHE works

    Why Q = U A dT does work. (This is the mechanical engineer’s view.)
    The energy from the sun heats and raises the temperature of the surface thermal system, i.e land, oceans, and atmosphere, per their particular and composite thermal properties, specific heat capacities, conductivities, etc.

    Q = U A dT describes the thermal behavior of the atmosphere no different from the insulated walls of a house or a blanket on the bed.

    When lit by the sun the surface thermal system absorbs energy and the temperatures increase per their respective thermal properties. Like the sun heating the south side of your house in winter.

    When dark the surface system loses energy and the temperatures decrease per their respective thermal properties. Like the unlit side of your house.

    It’s a diurnal cycle.

    If the energy gain on the lit side (ASR 12 h/day) is greater than the surface system loss (OLR 24 h/day) because, e.g. the albedo decreased, the temperature rises and the earth becomes a tropical jungle. (ASR > OLR, See my annotated K-T diagram.)

    If the energy gain on the lit side (ASR 12 h/day) is less than the surface system loss (OLR 24 h/day) because, e.g. the albedo increased, the temperature falls and the earth enters an ice age. (ASR < OLR, See my annotated K-T diagram.) Which, btw, is earth’s average natural state. Global warmth is exception not the rule.

    The unlit side is all energy loss.

    The ASR from the sun must equal/be greater than/be less than the OLR for the temperature to hold steady/increase/decrease.

  3. pwl says:

    Keep up the great work on climate Tony.

  4. AZ1971 says:

    One has only to look at the Vostok ice core data to see large jumps upwards in an otherwise downward trend during the Milankovitch cycles that, if they were to happen today, would cause immense panic and consternation.

  5. Andy DC says:

    That sharp rebound from 1980 to early 2000’s had nearly everybody believing in AGW to some extent, but upon further review, most of that increase was simply a rebound to pre-1960 normal temperatures. Until Tony started pointing it out, most people were unaware of the 1960’s-1970’s “Modern Little Ice Age”.

  6. RW says:

    Thanks for the link to that old article of yours. Good read.

    How’s the book coming along? Looking forward to reading it.

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