NOAA Data Falsification?

Did NOAA Falsify Temperature Data ?

The anti-science brigade and their Climate-change denying cohorts are at it again.

Specifically they claim that: “NOAA scientists upwardly adjusted temperature readings taken from the engine intakes of ships to eliminate the “hiatus” in global warming from the temperature record.”

They further claim that “This is a blatant attempt to politicize science by the administration and should be exposed for the dishonest research it is”.

Look at the accompanying graphic.


The top graph (A) shows NOAA global surface temperature changes over the last 130 years. The data are shown with new corrections Vs old corrections and as you can see the differences are tiny.

The lower graph (B) shows the same data with raw (uncorrected) data Vs Corrected data. The temperature data are shifted upwards prior to 1940 but from then on the raw and corrected data are strikingly similar.

According to the raw, unadjusted data, global surface temperatures warmed about 0.9°C from 1880 to 2014. According to the new NOAA analysis, they warmed about 0.8°C during that time. That’s a bit more than in the previous version of NOAA’s data set (0.75°C), but the net effect of these adjustments is to reduce the overall estimated warming as compared to the raw data!

I’ll say that again: the net effect of these adjustments is to REDUCE the overall estimated warming as compared to the raw data!

If you wanted to exaggerate global warming you would simply show the uncorrected data set, because it says that the world has warmed up about 2.071 degrees Fahrenheit since 1880. The corrected data set lowers this estimate to about 1.65 degrees Fahrenheit.”

But why adjust/correct the data? Isn’t this just fudging the numbers? Isn’t the pure raw data more accurate?

Contrary to the conspiracy theories, climate scientists process the raw temperature data for an important reason – to remove biases that don’t represent real temperature changes. The big ones in the new NOAA analysis deals with changes in the ways ocean temperatures have been measured. They’ve been measured from water samples in insulated buckets, uninsulated buckets, from valves in ships’ hulls (I happen to be a world authority on valves in ship’s hulls), and from instruments on buoys. As is the case for all measurements, these disparate temperature observations have differing inherent measurement errors and biases.

Adjustment of raw observations is necessary to more closely approach the truth. This is not conspiracy it is Science.