Monday, July 28, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Frigid ... in Anarctica

Sateliite data: World baked in June, but not South Pole.

Frigid ... in Anarctica

All bombast aside, global warming has been a subtle process, and we can't emphasize enough that a rise in global temperature in any given month doesn't necessarily mean it was warmer where we happened to be.

The lack of uniformity of the warming is evident in the latest NASA satellite temperature report, which was just released.

Worlwide, last month was the third-warmest June in the 34-year satelitte database, with overall temperatures 0.37 degrees centigrade, or close to 0.7 Fahrenheit, above normal.

On the map, you'll see the eastern United States was a warm spot, and you probably knew that, but it wasn't in a league with central Russia where temperatures were better than 11 degrees Fahrenheit above normals.

Conversely, it was frigid near the South Pole, with temperatures better than 7 degrees below normal.

Looking at the 34 years on the satellite record, on average we calculate a month-to-month variability of under 0.2 degrees Fahrenheit.

The biggest increase we found was 0.7 degrees between August and September 1987, with a similar decrease from June to July 2009.

John Christy, the University of Alabama researcher who is a keeper of the record, estimates a global warming trend of about 0.25 degrees per decade, or 2.5 degrees per century if the trend were to continue.

So to recap:

The world has been getting warmer, whether one blames the sun, the Chinese, or the neighbor's charcoal grill.

All this is playing out unevenly. Summers on occasion will be cool in Philadelphia, and it will even snow once in awhile in winter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

0.7 increase in September 1987, and a 0.6 degree decresae in July 2009

 

 

Tony Wood Inquirer Weather Columnist
About this blog

Everyone talks about the weather, and here we write about it.

When we’re around and conditions warrant, we’ll keep you updated about what’s coming, but we will do our best always to discuss weather and climate developments in context and remind you that nothing in the atmosphere happens in a vacuum.

Tony Wood has been writing about the atmosphere for The Inquirer for 26 years.

Reach Tony at twood@phillynews.com.

Tony Wood Inquirer Weather Columnist
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