Systematic Temperature Error in the Climate Change Discussion

by Bernie McCune

This whole discussion began with a posting on Watts Up With That by Hartmut Hoecht posted on July 11, 2018.

EnclosurePic UofNeb.jpeg
Temperature measurement systems comparison test layout.

It is worth reading the whole thing but I will summarize it here. Various ways of measuring ocean temperatures from long ago until present times are discussed and questions of uncertainty and errors are raised. Recent and even very old reports on sea surface temperature (SST) values are often given in fractions of a degree. In reality, until very recently, the collection process had obvious errors that were greater than one degree.

Cooling periods in the SST records seen in the 1940s and 1970s of 0.3º C were noted in the data with some concern about collection methods but this period is known to be a AMO (and with less influence PDO) 30 year cooling period. In order to discern these 0.3º C changes in the data, instruments with an accuracy of 0.1º C must be used. The rule of thumb noted that the instrument must have better than three times the accuracy of the targeted Continue reading “Systematic Temperature Error in the Climate Change Discussion”