Climatologist Dr. Judith Curry responds to warmist attacks on ‘pause’ whistleblower report

By: - Climate DepotFebruary 6, 2017 5:51 PM

In this post, I go through the critiques of Rose/Bates made by NOAA scientists and other scientists working with surface temperature data. They are basically arguing that the NOAA surface temperature data sets are ‘close enough’ to other (sort of) independent analyses of surface temperatures. Well, this is sort of beside the main point that is being made by Bates and Rose, but lets look at these defenses anyways. I focus here more on critiques of what John Bates has to say, rather than the verbiage used by David Rose or the context that he provided.

The Data: Zeke Hausfather and Victor Venema

You may recall a recent CE post where I discussed a recent paper by Zeke Hausfather Uncertainties in sea surface temperature. Zeke’s paper states that it has independently verified the Huang/Karl sea surface temperatures.

Zeke has written a Factcheck on David Rose’s article. His arguments are that:

  1. NOAA’s sea surface temperatures have been independently verified (by his paper)
  2. NOAA’s land surface temperatures are similar to other data sets
  3. NOAA did make the data available at the time of publication of K15

With regards to #1: In a tweet on Sunday, Zeke states

Zeke Hausfather ‏‪@hausfath   ‪@KK_Nidhogg@ClimateWeave @curryja and v5 is ~10% lower than v4. Both are way above v3, which is rather the point.

What Zeke is referring to is a new paper by Huang et al. that was submitted to J. Climate last November, describing ERSSTv5. That is, a new version that fixes a lot of the problems in ERSSTv4, including using ships to adjusting the buoys. I managed to download a copy of the new paper before it was taken off the internet. Zeke states that v4 trend is ~10% lower than v5 for the period 2000-2015. The exact number from information in the paper is 12.7% lower. The bottom line is that sea surface temperature data sets are a moving target. Yes, it is good to see the data sets being improved with time. The key issue that I have is reflected in this important paper A call for new approaches to quantifying biases in observations of sea surface temperature, which was discussed in this previous CE post.