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66% of all surface climate data is adjusted

The uncertainty of science: An analysis of the surface global weather data, dubbed GHCN and used by NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Sciences (GISS) to demonstrate the climate has been warming for the past century, has found that 66% of that data is adjusted or estimated and is not based on the actual raw data.

Overall, from 1880 to the present, approximately 66% of the temperature data in the adjusted GHCN temperature data consists of estimated values produced by adjustment models, while 34% of the data are raw values retained from direct measurements. The rural split is 60% estimated, 40% retained. The non-rural split is 68% estimated, 32% retained. Total non-rural measurements outpace rural measurements by a factor of 3x.

The estimates produced by NOAA for the GHNC data introduce a warming trend of approximately a quarter degree C per century. Those estimates are produced at a slightly higher rate for non-rural stations than rural stations over most of the record. During the first 60 years of the record measurements were estimated at a rate of about 75%, with the rate gradually dropping to 40% in the early 1990s, followed by a brief spike in the rate before resuming the drop to its present level.

Approximately 7% of the raw data is discarded. If this data were included as-is in the final record it would likely introduce a warming component from 1880 to 1950, followed by a cooling component from 1951 to the present.

As I have noted previously, all the adjustments cool the past and warm the present, a pattern that is just not realistic in the real world, and could only exist if the people doing the adjustment are either not recognizing their biases or are consciously manipulating the data to prove those biases.

Either way, the surface temperature data as released by GISS is simply not trustworthy for determining the changes in the Earth’s climate over the past few centuries.

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On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.

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  • D.K. Williams

    Biggest scam in modern times.

  • Phill O

    Personally, I do not doubt that the planet has warmed over the last 100 or so years. The retreat of glaciers in Alberta and BC support this. However, I also do not doubt that data are now being manipulated to negate the current cooling trend seen for the last 15-20 years. When one considers the mammoths and the food found in their systems, we note that there was a much warmer climate during their lives. Thus, we are really just coming out of a cool period for the earth and a warmer climate may be more of a norm.

    It has been argued that the solar powered global warming folk should not press the item too much as all the data is not in on the sun’s output over a large range of frequencies and how it relates to the differing levels of the atmosphere. However, only the consistent and sometimes forceful defense of a new or alternate theory, can lead to a truly scientific evaluation.

    My biggest question right now is “What is the lag time from the sun spot cycle diminishing, to the advancement of the glaciers in the Canadian Rockies?”. What one can find out now is how long it takes for the different flora and fauna to appear after a glacier retreats. Maybe some are evaluating and documenting this, but I am not aware of it. One would think this might be important to methods for evaluating time frames. For instance, one always believed that it takes incredible time frames for rock to form. Yet, the quarries here show that a layer of conglomerate has formed since these gravels were deposited by the last ice age.

  • Nick P

    Phill O

    “When one considers the mammoths and the food found in their systems, we note that there was a much warmer climate during their lives”

    The mammoths we find are frozen, no? Otherwise they would have decomposed shortly after their deaths. So how would they have food in their stomachs that indicate a warm climate yet be frozen so quickly in a warm climate that the remains didn’t decompose?

    “It has been argued that the solar powered global warming folk should not press the item too much as all the data is not in on the sun’s output over a large range of frequencies and how it relates to the differing levels of the atmosphere”

    As I am a non scientist, can you explain this in a little more depth? Are there plans to collect this data? It would seem invaluable to more fully understanding how the sun does or does not contribute to any heating.

    Nick P.

  • Tom Billings

    Phil, most of the mammoths recovered frozen have been in areas that have been sitting on top of permafrost since the beginning of the current ice age, some 2 million years ago. Today, heat makes the ice of permafrost expand, causing “heaving”, which often includes cracking of the ground right down to the ice layer. It is these cracks which mammoths are believed to have fallen/been chased into by prey animals. If winter comes fast enough after that, the ice contracts, the cracks close, and the mammoth is left in contact with the ice to freeze solid itself.

    That is thought to be how they contact ice and get frozen.

  • Nick P

    Tom, I’m having trouble understanding this. According to Phill, the Mammoths are eating warm weather vegetation that’s growing, according to you, in close proximity to ice sheets? Does that make sense?

  • Phill O

    There are alternate theories to the rapid freezing of the mammoths. However, yes we are coming out of the last ice age.

  • Phill O

    The solar dynamics observatory currently are monitoring several wavelengths given off from the sun. Right now there are two fairly well established indexes; the sun spot numbers and the 10.7 cm band. The sun spots have been monitored for about 400 years. The 10.7 cm band for 50+ years. We know there is a relationship between global climate change and the sun spot index. What the relationship to the sun’s output is not well understood. Do differing energies interact differently with the various layers of the earth’s atmosphere? Not known. What is the lag time for solar changes and global climate (similar to the season lag)? Not known.

    If I were a budding astronomer, I would definitely go into solar dynamics, particularly as we enter a period of lower sun activity. The earth captures in three days about the same amount of energy as the total known carbon reserves of the earth (known in 2005). So, the sun seems very important to us! Understanding the relationships will help predict future solar output and its influence on climate. This should help people make a scientific based decision rather than the current knee jerk reaction. To divert economies to battle CO2 emissions when its contribution is low seems senseless if there are other competing theories to the changes we have seen.

  • Nick P

    Phill O

    I get the impression that you are not fully convinced that CO2, or perhaps human contributed CO2, is the primary controlling factor for the slow rise in earth’s temperature over the last few hundred years? Would that be a fair statement?

    Nick P

  • Phill O

    As long as it keeps raining, the atmosphere keeps getting cleansing from CO2. The CO2 model does not explain the ice ages nor coming out of ice ages. However, solar activity changes does hold the opportunity to explain these phenomena.

    Also to note is the sediment records that are being explored. These indicate that the 1 in 100 or 500 storms tend to be grouped together rather than isolated. This suggests that climate change is the norm for earth. The Pluto atmospheric measurements from the late 1800s to now support that there is a four fold increase in Pluto’s atmosphere mimicking the terrestrial global warming. If the solar cycle is the major cause of our warming, then other planets should also exhibit this. Donald Parker has noted the loss of the Martian polar caps over the 50 some years he has photographed Mars.

  • Cotour

    Forgive me for butting in but: “PRIMARY CONTROLLING FACTOR” ?


    If the discussion were about Mars atmosphere maybe CO2 would be the primary contributing factor in its atmosphere and only because Mars has very little atmosphere because it has no iron core of any consequence and therefore no magnetic field to shield it from the sun’s energy and its average temperature varies wildly and the temperature is well below zero F.

    I believe that the primary controlling factor in earths atmosphere is water vapor, CO2 may have its effects but certainly it is not Primary.

  • PeterF

    Also, if earth’s atmospheric CO2 were to double, it would still only be a trace gas.

    The reason the global warmers’ climate models are so inaccurate is that they almost never take into account the primary greenhouse gas in our atmosphere; H2O.

  • Phill O

    The problem with not taking H2O into account is what is the source of the water? Under the solar powered global warming theory, the water is a result from the sun’s heating. This is similar to the case where the earth warms more when more land is exposed as the glaciers retreat. The question still arises to what is the lag time for the warming process (and glacier advance) when the sun’s cycle reverses?

  • Cotour

    Actually the “primary controlling factor” in earths climate is the sun, and the second is the earths magnetic field and everything else comes after that.

  • Edward

    Interesting discussions.

    1) Water vapor in Earth’s atmosphere accounts for about 20 degrees C of warming. CO2 only accounts for about 1 degree C. There are several hypotheses on why the Earth’s temperature would change without human input, and we know that the temperature has changed dramatically in the past without human input. The current interglacial period is a good example, and there have been multiple interglacial periods in during this 2-million year old ice age.

    2) One hypothesis is that cosmic rays contribute to cloud formation, and that during periods of high sunspot activity, the sun’s magnetic field is stronger and deflects more cosmic rays from striking the Earth. This means that fewer clouds allow more solar energy to reach the Earth’s surface. The hypothesis is that during times of low activity, such as the Maunder Minimum, more clouds would have formed and the Earth would have been cooler. The Maunder Minimum roughly corresponds with the Little Ice Age, but this does not prove the hypothesis.

    3) I often point out that there is another ice age due any millennium, but technically I am wrong. We are in an interglacial period of a long-lasting ice age, and what is due is an end to this interglacial period, which is in its 12th or 13th millenium. Such periods historically have lasted ten to twenty millennia (I know, the plural is millenniums, but I like to Latinize certain non-Latin words — and there is a word for doing that, but I can’t remember it, right now). I have also noticed that past interglacial periods have had their temperatures drop off gradually after a sharp temperature increase, but this one has remained warm, rather than cooling over time.

    4) I agree with D. K. Williams. This is a scam. If it weren’t, then the scientists would not have to fudge their data, as East Anglia did; mysteriously modify it over time, as NOAA is doing; silence critics, which is what insecure people do, suggesting that the climate warming supporters are not confident in their data, models, and conclusions; and predictions would come to pass more often, although many are political predictions intended to drive people to accept government tyranny in order to solve this non-problem (e.g. “we only have 500 more days until it is too late to save the Earth”). Politicians cannot control the weather, much less the climate. No one has associated climate change to human activity, and billions of years of natural climate change indicates that it will naturally change on its own without human intervention.

    Remember: the next ice age is due any millennium!

  • Nick P


    “No one has associated climate change to human activity”

    Let me first say that I am not qualified scientifically to argue the subtleties here but I can ask questions about seeming contradictions and paradoxes. You, like other posters here seem unconvinced over the matter of human caused global warming, so how is it that the scientific establishment claims that the science is settled, human activity is a significant contributor to global warming and steps we can take now can reduce the impact. If this is a scam, and I do not argue that it is not, why are these scientific bodies supporting it?

    Anyone else is welcome to chime in here as well.

  • Phill O

    Some good thought going on here! One word of warning is that Wikipedia is not reliable and has political bias as well as bias to the CO2 model. This is a result of who contributes

    Follow the money! This was said by a friend on another issue but applies apply. Right now there are research grants depending upon the warming by CO2. However, if true science was applied, there is great opportunity for research. My example of going into solar dynamics. Also, monitoring (with an open mind) the changes and kinetics for the transformations near and around glaciers.

    Cotours comment “Actually the “primary controlling factor” in earths climate is the sun, and the second is the earths magnetic field and everything else comes after that.” I can agree with but research is required to determine mechanisms and also interactions with the complete spectrum from the sun.

    What I could use is a comprehensive index for others who concur with the solar powered global climate change theory. Those who say warming has not happened over the past 100 or so years, I consider nuts!

    Edwards comments seem well thought out with the exception noted by Nick.

  • Edward


    Interestingly, those who believe in anthropogenic global warming (AGW) are quick to claim that those who are skeptical are funded by a biased source: the oil and gas industry and claim that these skeptics are therefore biased in their skepticism. However, the believers do not believe that the scientists advocating AGW could possibly be biased due to their own funding sources: power hungry governments. Governments are quick to declare that solutions to this non-problem can only come from laws that restrict the freedoms of We the People and increase the power of They the Government. As if governments can control the climate.

    As long as the AGW scientists go along with the AGW hypothesis, they get lots and lots (and lots!) of funding, thus they are able to make their mortgage payments, send their kids to college, and save for retirement. Meanwhile, the oil and gas industry is not doing much to deny AGW, and is even funding pro-AGW studies in order to not look like bad guys.

    Second, the claim that global warming is caused by man is always guilt by correlation: man is putting CO2 into the atmosphere more than the pre-industrial past, and the temperature is going up — which it isn’t, these past two decades, despite record rates of CO2 emissions. There is no evidence other than this correlation

    Third, man puts at most 2% of the globe’s total CO2 emissions into the atmosphere, the rest coming from natural sources such as decaying vegetation, volcanoes, and lightning-caused forest fires. All it takes for nature itself to increase by 2% the CO2 it puts into the atmosphere is to have more fires, more volcanoes, or an unusually high rate of dying and decaying vegetation. How hard can it be for nature to increase the rate of plant growth by a mere 2%, especially with the additional fertilizing CO2 in the air? How much CO2 is generated by decaying aquatic vegetation?

    Fourth, despite not signing the Kyoto Accords, the US is one of the few — but is the largest — country to meet its limits on CO2 emissions. Coincidentally (coincidence being the same criteria for blaming humans for global warming), the globe stopped warming during the same time frame that the US met its limits.

    Yet instead of cheering that the planet has been saved (it does not matter that it was the US that saved it), the government funded scientists are busy making other excuses and call it a “pause,” implying that the temperature will resume its climb any day now.

    Although the claim has been that correlation proves that man is responsible for warming temperatures, I never hear or read claims that the this recent “pause” is likewise caused by man. I am the only one I know of who suggests this connection (probably because it is just as silly as the connection between man’s CO2 emissions and rising temperatures, and no one else is willing to make silly emotional arguments to counter silly emotional arguments).

    Fifth, correlation is not causation. You probably figured that one out while reading item-the-fourth, above, yet you are willing to accept that the correlation that the increase in anthropogenic CO2 emissions from the 1940s to today and the rise in global temperatures between 1970ish and 1995ish proves AGW. There is no other evidence of AGW than this correlation, yet if the correlation were causation, then there would not be a “pause” (or saved Earth, as I like to think of it), because countries other than the US have dramatically increased their CO2 output (they are exempt from Kyoto).

    Sixth, scientists are supposed to be skeptical until actual evidence proves a hypothesis, thus turning it into an actual theory, not the misnamed “theories” that abound among the general public, but are at best hypotheses (read: “educated guesses”). The global warming hypothesis has demonstrably failed, as evidenced by the Earth being saved (or “pause,” as some would call it), these past couple of decades.

    Seventh, the models have all failed to predict the saved Earth (which I think I will claim as my own Saved Earth Hypothesis), demonstrating that the climatologists are not taking into consideration some very important factor as they predict future global temperatures. CO2 emissions are greater than ever (China has increased a lot, and India is industrializing, too), but the temperature remains flat.

    There is obviously a factor that is significantly more important than CO2, and this is missing from everyone’s equations (not only can the scientists see it, as noted in item-the-fourth, above, but you can see it, too, and you have said that you are not a scientist). Which brings us to:

    Eighth, the skeptics are skeptical because no one, even the skeptics, knows what this unknown — yet important — factor is, how it works, or how it affects predictions. Until we know this factor (or are there multiple factors?), we cannot be sure of the science or the predictions. Thus, uncertainty requires that we be skeptical of all claims until one or more are proved.

    Ninth, the reason that so many people believe in AGW is because a politician (read: “liar, liar, pants on fire”) made a movie saying so (how do you know when a politician is lying?), then made a fortune selling carbon credits. He was just as biased as those scientists who were accepting money from biased governments (read: “biased politicians”), which explains why he conveniently forgot to tell the half of the truth that does not support his claim that you need to buy carbon credits from him in order to save the Earth (which already happened, by the way, or have I mentioned that?).

    Meanwhile, scientists who are willing to “hide the decline” (read: “misrepresent their data”), “lose” their data, shut-down scientific debate (read: “bypass the scientific method”), create demonstrably fraudulent “hockey stick” graphs, modify (read: “fudge”) past data points, declare that reality — not their models — is wrong, call for the prosecution of skeptical scientists (skepticism being a very important part of science), and take funding from biased governments are the ones that you are willing to blindly believe.

    But you still haven’t associated climate change to human activity. No one has.

  • Nick P


    “yet you are willing to accept that the correlation that the increase in anthropogenic CO2 emissions from the 1940s to today and the rise in global temperatures between 1970ish and 1995ish proves AGW”

    You are mistaken sir. I am a skeptic based partly on my opinion of the people who advocate AGW and my observation that very well credentialed people I know are in disagreement with the mainstream AGW view and their opposition is based on the Science.

    On a more curious note, I find it highly ironic that you are describing the AGW scientists as basically dishonest and lacking integrity while on another thread defending the honesty, honor and integrity of the scientific establishment. You don’t see the irony?

  • Cotour

    I think it reasonable to conclude that earths climate has changed and will continue to change, ice sheets grow and shrink back, seas rise and fall (slowly at the moment) and the level of CO2 in the atmosphere is not the primary driver of these activities. CO2 is more likely a result of rather than the cause of. No?

    In addition the additional CO2 that is added to the atmosphere through human activity may or may not have its effects, my best guess is certainly not to the degree claimed.

    Here is an article from 2009 by Paul Krugman:

    I liked the first comment to his article:

    “Yeah, yeah. Heard it all before. Funny how despite large increases in CO2 the temperature did not start to rise until the late 70s. Could you be ignoring urban heat island Mr Krugman?

    Of course, we all know the real reason for your faux concern: regulating CO2 gives you and your liberal friends the best mechanism yet for controlling people’s lives. Were this a curve justifying conservative policy you would be dismissing it as “only 60 basis points – what are those dumb conservatives whining about? Well, this is one “dumb” conservative that will never submit to the likes of you.”

    I think that the more honest conversation is about pollution and dialing it back through best practices and new technology. But an honest conversation is not what this is really about, its more about “social justice” and control. Just my opinion though.

  • Edward

    Nick wrote: “You don’t see the irony?”

    No irony at all. We do not assume that all scientists fudge their data just because the East Anglia Group did so. Otherwise, we would likewise assume that the skeptical scientists are “basically dishonest and lacking integrity.” Take each scientist on his merits. If he violates the scientific method then his science is questionable. If he fudges data then his integrity is questionable. If he tries to silence skeptics, then his ethics are questionable.

    In this topic, it is the conclusions from the East Anglia Group’s fudged data that are a major source for the conclusion that there is global warming correlated to human CO2 emissions. They were unable to make the conclusion that they desired without fudging the data, and they are unwilling to accept critiques of their work. They “lost” the data when they were asked for it for independent review and analysis, and they organized a harassment of scientists who question their work.

    This harassment has spread so broadly that the American Geophysical Union’s Journal of Geophysical Results will not publish any papers that contradict AGW, and the Los Angeles Times will not publish any articles or letters to the editor that also contradict AGW. Pro-AGW scientists have petitioned the US President to prosecute people merely for disagreeing with them.

    The US government’s NOAA is tampering with historical temperatures so that they will wrongly show increasing temperatures. NASA announced that 2014 is the warmest year on record, despite their analysis showing that they are 62% certain that it is a lie.

    We can and should question the honesty of some scientists, but that does not mean that all others are dishonest.

  • Cotour

    Related, when you listen to this guy (he was on Coast last night) he is deadly serious and claims that he has evidence in the form of documented observation and data to back it up:

    What if what this guy says is going on is in fact going on? Information or disinformation? HARRP does exist and controlling the weather has definitely been attempted over the course of history, and I would have to reasonably conclude that our level of technology would indicated that it continues today in a much, much bigger way.

    What does the potential of “geoengineering” have on the “climate change” debate?

  • PeterF

    I believe you are correct. Weather control is a reality and has been practiced for centuries. Mastery of the art is taught in upper level courses at Hogwarts.

  • Cotour




    Wiki: “In the US, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration keeps records of weather modification projects on behalf of the Secretary of Commerce, under authority of Public Law 92-205, 15 USC § 330B, enacted in 1971.[20]”

    Weather modification exists, the only question remains is to what degree and what level of technology is being used.

  • Phill O

    In Alberta, people are trying cloud seeding again to reduce the hail. Insurance companies are reported to be a rather large player.

    Tera-forming (or the Mars equivalent) has been proposed for Mars. First introduce microbes that can free up the CO2 into the atmosphere and thereby get global warming. This can happen on Mars because there is not rain yet, to clear the CO2. Trees and other plants come next that start the oxygen production. Other than that, the Hogwarts classes might help (PeterF).

    A note on the water in earth’s atmosphere. When it is present as clouds, yes there is the reflection problem. What amateur astronomers have been battling (at least in the western provinces) is that the water is not forming clouds and just reflecting the infrared back. One can see this by evaluating the milkyness of the sky. Up here, the milkyness has been 3-4 fists above the horizon. A great sky (New Mexico has them) has milkyness only one or two fingers high on a good night. The best skies I have seen there was 2009 when it was so cold. That took the water vapor out. The last few winters were warmer and the sky transparency was not as good as 2009. Still, it was far better than Alberta.

  • PeterF

    I didn’t mean to say that “attempts” to control the weather and climate are not being made. I just don’t believe that humans are in control of the global thermostat.

    I am not a communicant in the church of human caused climate change, and this heretic will ridicule any who proselytize for it.

    Especially in light of the original post that started this comment thread. EVERY “fact” that “proves” human caused climate change has eventually been revealed as “not fact”. (or at least a 97% consensus of them)

  • Cotour

    The word “control” would indicate a kind of absolute ability to make happen what you want to happen. The attempt to influence something that you are not in any way in control of is a very different thing and that is I believe what this guy is indicating in his observations.

    There is plenty of evidence that the attempt to influence the weather and or the climate has been and I would have to believe is to some degree underway for the many reasons that there would be to do so. When you tend to mix the two terms and not distinguish between them you are unable to recognize either.

    Believing that humans are “in control of the thermostat” is not really what is being pointed out here, you are blending together many concepts like ” Global warming” and “climate change” and actual detectable technology and science and activities and calling that blended concept something that you reject.

    I think that is the classic “throwing the baby out with the bath water” kind of thinking.

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