JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Excuses? Coldest Summer day, Snow in Australia and suddenly BOM remembers how inadequate their equipment is…

Snow in December: Has Australia installed too many solar panels?

Climate Change brings summer snow to Australia

Coldest maximum summer temperature on record at Thredbo

Kate Doyle, ABC News

On Monday, the second day of summer, the temperature only reached -1 degrees Celsius at the Thredbo weather station, the coldest maximum temperature recorded anywhere in Australia during summer.

But really cold records don’t matter.  For the first time in history, Blair Trewin, Bureau of Meteorology points out how minor these daily records are:

Blair Trewin, senior climatologist at the Bureau of Meteorology, confirmed that it was a summer as well as December record but pointed out there was more to it.

“In some ways it’s not quite as impressive as it looks,” Dr Trewin said.

This is indeed the only instance of him ever saying that.

“This is because before automatic weather stations were installed in the 1990s, manual observations at high mountain sites [like the top of Thredbo, Mount Hotham and Falls Creek] were very limited outside the ski season.”

Exactly. When will Blair Trewin tell Australians that hot records are not as impressive as they look because [...]

Raw Data Bombshell: no change in Very Hot Days in Australia since World War I

What a bombshell. Despite the non-stop stories of unprecedented heat the original data at 60 of the oldest sites across Australia shows there are no more Very-Hot-Days now than there were early last century. That’s no trend in 40 degree days for 100 years. No change – that is, until the Bureau of Meteorology adjusts the data…

After we were shocked at the latest ACORN changes to our Very Hot Days data, I asked Chris Gillham if we could see the effect of Bureau of Meteorology changes to the original raw data – and he replied it would be too time-consuming writing the code to calculate 40C+ days among the millions of daily temperatures from 112 weather stations across Australia since 1910. Then he did it anyway.

Wow. In 2011, the BoM’s ACORN 1 adjustments wiped out some of the “very hot days” recorded at weather stations in the early 1900s. These were records that had stood for a whole century. Then, quietly six years later, the ACORN 2 readjustments turned the statistical air conditioner on again and cooled people from 100 years in the future.

It’s all especially miraculous given that even the old World War I  data was recorded in [...]

Whopper part II: Look what the BoM did to the last three Februarys in Australia?!

The Bureau of Meteorology did what to February?

Wow, just wow. Look what the Bureau of Meteorology has covertly done to February? Something like one third of a degree has been added to the average Australian summer maximum anomalies over the past few years according to the “expert” data from the worlds-best-practise equipment.

In the BOM Whopper Part 1 we revealed that in the BOM’s latest round of unannounced adjustments there were big increases in the rate of Australian summer warming. It turns out a lot of the summer rise comes from changes to February. Mysteriously, there were large changes to the national average of the last three years. Let that sink in.

These changes were incomprehensible because while the averaged “whole nation” got warmer, there were no changes to the data in any of the 104 individual stations.

It’s all rather spooky… but what it isn’t, is scientific.

The two main points in Bob Fernley Jones’ work:

There are big increases to measurements recorded in the last three years? Why? Yet again, the adjustments are down in the early years, up in the latter years, and overall, the rate of warming, surprise, increases thanks to man-made adjustments. He [...]

Shrinking Stevenson Screens cause global warming (and peeling paint, long grass…)

The Australian BOM has lost its way

Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology is paid more than a million dollars a day, and the planet is under seige, yet the paint is peeling off some Australian thermometer screens, the grass is long, and wasps are nesting in them. What once were large 230 litre wooden boxes have shrunk to 60 litres and are now even turning to plastic.  The old glass thermometers are being replaced with electronic gear that can record a burst of hot air — yet somehow those freak high spikes are supposed to be comparable to temperatures recorded 100 years ago by slow glass thermometers.

Old larger boxes protected thermometers from sudden changes in air temperature.

Left: Len Walker with a 230L screen in 1940. Right: Blair Trewin with a modern 60L Stevenson screen.

Possibly the hardest thing to explain is that even though the BOM collected comparison data on the different types of thermometers, which might help to assess new versus old, they routinely throw the data away. Compounding that, the metadata on sites is incomplete, missing, lacking in documentation.  Giant six lane highways are built next to equipment sites but not recorded. There is a huge [...]

Giles weather station — sited next to almost the only bitumen for 500 km

I visited the famous Giles weather station a couple of weeks ago. It’s an ACORN top ranking site, it even has a Met office. Because it so central and so remote the measurements here are used to estimate temperatures across a vast area — indeed, arguably, it’s the most influential site in terms of Australia’s area-averaged temperature. It’s 1,700km drive from Perth (1,000 miles) and the last 800 km of that is dirt road with wild camels. It’s so remote the nearest post box is 340 km away across the state border at Uluru / Ayers Rock.

This could have been the best site in Australia, unaffected by UHI, open since 1956, staffed with professionals.

Despite the site being surrounded by three deserts and 500,000 square kilometers of wilderness somehow the only short stretch of bitumen for miles starts 600m from Giles and runs within 10m of the Stevenson screen.

Giles is arguably the most central and most remote station in Australia.

Never fear, civilization is here:

 

Giles, Bureau of Meteorology, ACORN, site, Stevenson screen, WA.

Stepping back — the site is surrounded by gravel:

There is even a kind of gravel car park beside the [...]

The Bureau of Met disappears “Very Hot Days” graph showing the most hot days in 1952

Here’s an inconvenient fact: Australia had the highest number of very hot days in 1952, back when CO2 levels were 311ppm and humans had not yet emitted 87% of our carbon dioxide emissions. Something else was causing that extreme heat. If only the modelers knew what it was?

For years the BOM site had this informative graph below, but yesterday Craig Kelly M.P. phoned me to prepare for his Bolt Report appearance and informed me the Bureau had dropped it down the memory hole. It used to be a tab available on their Track climate trends and extremes page. Apparently in this era of global warming, the BoM doesn’t think Australians care about the trends in days over 40C in Australia, or perhaps it didn’t fit the agenda? On the Bolt Report last night Kelly explained that according to the Wayback machine, it disappeared sometime during the election campaign this year. (It was there on March 26th and gone on March 28th.)

Thankfully Paul Homewood of Notalotofpeopleknowthat kept a copy:

There’s not much a of a trend in the average number of very hot days (greater than 40C) each year in Australia.  | Source: Australian Bureau of Meteorology 2016.

[...]

Port Hedland: one man with a keen interest knows more about this site than the Bureau of Met does

If the planet was at stake you’d think the BOM would be doing this research, not unpaid volunteers.

Bill Johnston has shown again, that the BOM is apparently unaware and, perhaps most damningly, not even interested in most of the things that happened to their official thermometer sites.

Port Hedland is supposedly “one of the best” researched sites in Australia — so it is a certified ACORN site (one of the 112). The trends matter, and being remote, it influences a large area. But one man with dedication and no funding at all can find key historical maps and photos that the BOM, with its million dollar-a-day budget, cannot.  Instead of doing this hard work the BOM uses the magical homogenization process “to fix” up all the anomalies by hunting for data in sites hundreds of kilometers away that can be used to adjust the records at Port Hedland. This is the secret process that even the BOM admits it cannot describe in full to anyone outside the BOM. As Johnston says, it’s a process so bad it “should be abandoned”. There is no saving the error correction that starts with bad data, missing documents, and barely any historical research [...]

Homogenisation: The Magical system which uses thermometers in Victoria to correct the temperature in Tasmania

Trying to fix past mistakes through homogenization

Lots of things can muck up a perfect thermometer spot, like shade, new roads, new screens, or old paint. In order to remove these annoying non-climatic effects, the BOM compares each station to those around it to look for odd changes. In theory this sounds like a good idea. In practice it’s more like hepatitis – bad news that spreads. It’s a rogue code, sweeping through records, trying to find undocumented changes, and enabling any amount of revisionism.

The BOM “detects” these mysterious shifts at each site through thermometers that may be hundreds of kilometers away, even across a mountain range or the Bass Strait.

Among other sites, Cape Bruny in far south Tasmania has been corrected with the help of Ballarat 812 km away on the mainland, over mountains and across the Bass Strait. In 1991 Cape Bruny was found to be “statistically” wrong, and adjusted down by over half a degree.

All these sites marked in red were used to correct the record at least once at Cape Bruny, a distant island in the far south of Tasmania.

It’s a tough life for old screens: Their wooden houses get [...]

Who knew? The Australian Bureau of Met just made last summer hotter, and history colder (again)

The cheapest way to prevent man-made global warming is stop the BOM altering the data

First the BoM had “high quality” data. Then, with fanfare, after we asked for an audit they had the miracle of ACORN circa 2011. Then early this year ACORN 2.0 was quietly birthed  with major adjustments as expert data became “more expert” but the BOM strangely didn’t want to mention that what was so good is now even better (apparently). The unofficial BOM audit team — especially Bob Fernley-Jones and Chris Gillham — have unearthed just how large the latest rewrite of history is. These men are truly independent, they have no funding, and nothing to gain either way. Please thank them for their unpaid dedication.

In this brazen latest round, even the summer of 2018 just got warmer. After all the headlines, after it was measured on supposedly modern first class equipment, even data just 18 months old is being re-fiddled. The temperatures read out on the news in January 2018? Nevermind what they said then. Those hottest ever records then were even hotter than the BoM thought, thanks to amazing new discoveries that the BOM doesn’t think are important enough to issue as [...]

Feast your eyes on Streaky Bay’s thermometer — over bitumen for 31 long hot years

Ken Stewart rates the Streaky Bay site as one of the worst he has seen  This is an influential site because it’s in a remote area, is used to “correct” official ACORN sites, and has been running for a long time. Last October the BOM finally moved it to a completely new (and much better site) – only three decades too late.  Strangely, they didn’t give the new site a new station number? Normally the old and new sites would be run concurrently with two different numbers so the data from both could be compared and the differences in temperature between them could be worked out. Is that an accident? Does it hide the terrible quality of the previous site?

The Streaky Bay information (site 018079) tells us it opened in 1865 but the site only has monthly data from 1926 and daily data from an even shorter period. The rest presumably hasn’t been digitized yet. As best as I can tell, the station metadata appear to mark this site as being at the post office from 1865 to 2018, and record the ground cover as becoming asphalt in July 1987. That means for 31 years the Australian Bureau of [...]

Maitland SA: Another expert thermometer site — and with incinerator “forcing”

Some days in Maitland are hotter than others.

The very non-compliant Maitland, SA, thermometer site  #022008 |   Imagery  ©2019 Google, Oct 2014.

Thanks to Ken Stewart, the tour through the Great sites of the Australian Bureau of Meteorology continues.

Once again, the experts have carefully graphed, diagrammed, checked and ignored all the things that shouldn’t be within 30 meters of a thermometer. See Maitland Site Info. That fence is described as “Galvanised iron”. The ground is bitumen. The incinerator is labeled “incinerator”. And there are two tanks just out of view to the right, not to mention the tin sheds, trees, buildings and wind breaks.

In 1967 the site only had two tin sheds within a 30 meter radius, which was still not compliant, but vastly cooler than present. The incinerator is about 6 or 7 meters from the Stevenson Screen, and only appears on the maps in 2014.

As Ken says “the site is a heat sink”. It’s not an official “ACORN” star site, but records here get mentions in the media. Worse, Maitland  is one of the sites used to adjust official ACORN data in Adelaide, Cape Borda, Ceduna, Kyancutta, Port Lincoln, and Snowtown.

Ken has also [...]

Murray Bridge, South Australia, where thermometers record junk every day

Thanks to Bill in Oz sending in the shot of Mt Barker, Ken Stewart started auditing other sites in South Australia and discovered this masterpiece of expert siting. And thanks to Ken, you can see The Wacky World of Weather Stations: No. 2- Murray Bridge.

Year opened: 1885. Who thinks the site looked like this 130 years ago?  | Image capture Mar 2018, Google ©2019

As he points out:

The screen is in a houseyard near concrete paths, vegetable gardens and shrubs, close to a picket fence, within 5 metres of sheds, sheltered from the south by a 1.6 metre high fence, with buildings to the east, north, and west, and less than 10 metres from the bitumen road.

Like Mt Barker, this is another site which is not an ACORN “top ranked” site that the Bureau of Meteorology use, but results from here are used to adjust ACORN sites like Mount Gambier, so it is de facto a part of that network.  Sites like this are also used to create propaganda, sorry, press releases about “hottest ever records”.

The BoM know exactly how bad this site is, and in carefully measured detail.

Somewhere a paid bureaucrat has [...]

Mt Barker — How not to measure the temperature

Thanks to Bill in Oz who sent in this photo of the Mt Barker site in South Australia.

Ken Stewart at Ken’s Kingdom writes: The Wacky World of Weather Stations: No. 1- Mount Barker

Photo: Bill in Oz.

Count the ways this site breaches the Bureau of Meteorology own rules:

Ken Stewart finds the relevant BoM guidelines. Clearly this site is on a slope, too close to buildings, too close to tall foliage, too close to heat sinks, it should not be artificially watered, or near asphalt. It should have a 30 meter buffer zone, and not be shielded from the sun, rain or wind. BillinOz points out that it is totally screened from the southerly cold winds, and the cold air will be drained from the spot down the slope.

How much do the Bureau of Meteorology care about climate change? — About 1m out of 30m or 3% of their advertised “care” factor.  That’s a a 97% Junk-Science rate. The future of life on Earth is supposedly at stake and the “experts” can’t even be bothered accurately measuring the climate change they tell us we need to pay billions of dollars to solve.

Could it be worse? [...]

The worst drought in history viewed through carbo-phobic glasses: ABC misses the obvious

The obvious headline:

“Worst drought in history was 100 years ago, nothing to do with CO2″

The Carbophobic headline:

Drought of 1891 to 1903 reconstructed shows today’s conditions likely to have more devastating effects

Indoctrinated ABC copy-writers can’t see anything other than future doom and a chance to advertise the government religion.  Figure that the Australian GDP per capita is 13 times larger now than in 1900. We have phones, planes, antibiotics, air-conditioning, satellites, and super computers, yet somehow we wouldn’t cope as well if the drought hit now?

It’s great, for a change, to see the ABC reporting on historic Australian extremes, and the BOM researching our amazing documentary history, shame they miss the bleeding obvious.

By Nikolai Beilharz, ABC Enviro-propaganda Unit.

A reconstruction of the Federation drought has found that if it were to occur again today, its effects would likely be even more devastating in some areas of the country.

The ‘once in a century drought’, which went from 1891 to 1903, caused an ecosystem collapse affecting more than a third of the country. The drought was one of the world’s worst recorded ‘megadroughts’, which at [...]

ABC BOM suddenly discover historic weather records (but only for snow)

Snow again in Western Australia?

South West WA got snow at Easter this year, a remarkable event, and then snow a week ago with predictions of more –  which maybe fell on July 5. Concerned that two or three* bouts of snow didn’t fit the narrative, the ABC and BOM suddenly found an interest in our historic weather archives:

Snow has been falling in Western Australia since records began

Australian snow is usually associated with the alpine region of the east coast, but the fluffy white stuff has been falling in Western Australia since records began in 1846.

It is estimated that Western Australia experiences an average 1.7 snow events annually This could be more as meteorologists do not have an observational system to record them The Bureau of Meteorology have said there could be another snow event this weekend at Bluff Knoll as a cold front approaches the south of WA

What the ABC never seem to report:

Heatwaves have been happening in Western Australia since records began 50 degrees? It’s occurred all over Australia and many times

125F in Geraldton. The Chronicle newspaper, Trove, Jan 11 1896

When it’s hot, it’s proof of a [...]