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Which expert put a thermometer on a hot tin roof for 40 years?

Posted By Jo Nova On October 3, 2019 @ 3:05 pm In Global Warming | Comments Disabled

Is This the Wackiest Weather Station in Australia?

Guest post by Ken Stewart

South Australia puts thermometers beside incinerators. Victoria puts them behind prison walls. Tasmania has one beside piles of human excrement. New South Wales has them beside freeways. But Queensland goes one better — it has one on a roof.  And not just any roof, but on the shiny steel roof of a sugar loader, high above the ocean, and at the end of a jetty 5.6 kilometres out to sea. It’s in the Coral Sea, at Lucinda Point in Far North Queensland.

This station cannot possibly record meaningfully representative temperatures. But these temperatures are duly reported on the Bureau’s websites, and on TV and radio. Not only that, but temperatures at Lucinda are used to adjust temperatures at Cairns. Thus, they contribute to the official climate record of Australia, and also to global climate analyses by the likes of the Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS) and the Hadley Climate Research Unit (HadCruT).

Putting a weather station on a roof is a direct breach of the Bureau of Meteorology’s own guidelines, which state:

3.6.7  “Shelters shall not be installed on the tops of roofs, or near the exhausts or heat exchangers of such equipment as air conditioners, refrigerators and the like.”

Here’s a Google satellite image of the Lucinda Point jetty and sugar loading wharf.  The Stevenson screen containing the automatic electronic thermometer is in the red oval.

Lucinda Jetty and thermometer

This image shows the length of the jetty.

Lucinda Bureau of Meteorology

Being on the roof of the sugar loader, 5.6km offshore, the weather station has not had an update to the site plan since 2002 (not surprisingly).

Lucinda map siting.

I have been looking at the siting of Australian weather stations for many weeks now, at my blog kenskingdom.wordpress.com.  Some are worse than others, but now and then I see one which makes me scratch my head and wonder — how can the Bureau get away with this?  This is such a one.

Details of Lucinda:



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