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Summer Causes Climate Change Hysteria–Roy Spencer

July 10, 2018

By Paul Homewood




A pertinent piece from Roy Spencer:




Summers in the U.S. are hot. They always have been. Some are hotter than others.

Speaking as a PhD meteorologist with 40 years experience, this week’s heat wave is nothing special.

But judging from the memo released on June 22 by Public Citizen (a $17 million per year liberal/progressive consumer rights advocacy group originally formed by Ralph Nader in 1971 and heavily funded by Leftwing billionaire George Soros’s Open Society Foundations), every heat wave must now be viewed as a reminder of human-caused climate change. The memo opines that (believe it or not) the news media have not been very good about linking weather events to climate change, which is leading to complacency among the public.

The June 22 memo focus was on the excessive heat in New York state, so let’s begin our journey down Hysteria Lane there. The official NOAA average maximum temperatures for every June since 1895 in New York looks like this:

Fig. 1. Average June maximum temperatures in New York state for every year from 1895 through 2017 (Source: NOAA)

The long term trend is not statistically different from zero. June 2018 is not yet available at the NOAA website, but from what I’ve seen for the global June Climate Forecast System map at, it looks like it was near the long-term (20th Century) average.

The memo also made mention of the widespread record warmth the U.S. experienced in May, 2018. New York had it’s 7th warmest May on record this year, and the long-term linear warming trend there since 1895 is weak (0.22 F/decade) and not statistically different from zero at the 95% confidence level. The May warmth in the U.S. was regional, as expected for weather variations, with much of Canada being exceedingly cold:

Fig. 2. NOAA CFS model-diagnosed surface temperature departures from normal for May, 2018, showing the regional nature of the record U.S. warmth that month (graphic courtesy of

When do you suppose the hottest temperature ever recorded in New York was? Clearly, with global warming, it must be in the last 20 or 30 years, right?


It was 109 deg. F. on July 22, 1926 in Troy, New York. In contrast, the state record for the coldest temperature was much more recent: -52 deg. F on Feb 18, 1979, at Old Forge, New York.

What about this week’s heat wave? Let’s look at NOAA’s GFS forecast model 5-day average temperatures for this week (Monday through Friday, July 2-6, 2018, graphic from

Fig. 3. 5-day forecast average temperature departures from average over North America from the GFS model (graphic courtesy of

As you can see, the excessive heat is (again) regionally isolated, which is exactly what we expect for weather… not for climate change. See those colder than average areas? Why aren’t those being blamed on climate change, too? They look like they approximately cancel out the warm area over the Northeast U.S., which is often the case for weather (not climate change) variations.

That was a 5-day forecast for this week. Next let’s look at what was actually observed over the last couple days (July 1-2), which were very hot in the Great Lakes and Northeast:

Fig. 4. Oregon State University Prism temperature analysis for July 1-2, 2018, as departures from the 1981-2010 average.

What we see is that there were unseasonably cool temperatures in the western U.S., again an indication of a temporary and localized weather pattern… not “global warming”, which would be warm everywhere.

How about extreme high temperatures in the U.S in general? Here are the yearly total number of days above 100 and 105 deg. F, again for the years 1895 through 2017, based upon official NOAA data:

Fig. 5. Yearly average number of days per U.S. station having at least 100 or 105 deg. high temperatures, 1895 through 2017.

We see no trend in the number of days with excessive heat.

So, what do we make of the claims in the Public Citizen memo? Well, they mention that we have seen 1.1 deg. C of warming since the Industrial Revolution. Think about that. Less than 2 deg. F warming in about 200 years, part of which is likely to be natural, based upon temperature proxy estimates over the last 2,000 years for the Northern Hemisphere:

Fig. 6. 2,000 years of Northern Hemisphere temperature variations from an average of a number of temperature proxies. The period of substantial human-caused warming is generally agreed to be only since 1950 (U.N. IPCC AR5).

Am I claiming that there is no such thing as human-caused warming? No. I’m claiming that it is overblown. The Public Citizen memo makes much of recent record warm years clustering together, which sounds alarming — if one doesn’t mention the small fractions of a degree involved. If there was no natural year-to-year variability, and the temperature was increasing at 0.01 or 0.02 deg. F every year, then every successive year would be a record warm year…but who would care? The rate of ‘global warming’ is too weak for any one person to notice in their lifetime.

Furthermore, we already know the climate models (which are the basis for proposed changes in energy policy to get us away from fossil fuels) are producing generally twice as much warming of the atmosphere-ocean system as has been observed. The most recent energy budget analysis of surface and deep-ocean warming suggests that the climate system is only half as sensitive to our CO2 emissions as you are being told…. maybe 1.5 deg. C of eventual warming from a doubling of atmospheric CO2. At 410 ppm, We are currently half way to doubling.

And even THAT reduced estimate of future warming assumes ALL of the warming is human-caused! If a portion of recent warming is natural, the less the human-caused global warming problem becomes.

Finally, the Public Citizen memo claims that today’s technology would already allow 80% to 100% of our energy to come from renewable sources. This is patently false. Solar and wind are relatively diffuse (and thus expensive) sources of energy which are intermittent, requiring fossil fuel (or nuclear) backup. It would be exceedingly expensive to get even 50% of our energy from such sources. Maybe someday we will have such technologies, but until that day arrives, the massive amount of money that would be required to achieve such a goal would worsen poverty, which historically has been the leading cause of premature death in the world.

  1. Jack Broughton permalink
    July 10, 2018 8:13 am

    Beautifully simple, clear science presentation of facts: the BBC are bound to give this air-time…… … I don’t think.

  2. July 10, 2018 9:26 am

    As always; the data is on the palette, the picture is what you do with the data.

  3. Mike Jackson permalink
    July 10, 2018 10:09 am

    Generous man, Roy! For “this is patently false”, try “this is an outright and deliberate lie intended to scare the life out of you all so we can the more easily bully you into doing what we tell you.”

    The claims are so easily debunked that there can only be two possible reasons why they continue this charade. One: they think we are too stupid to work it out; two: the media are too stupid to work it out and we are stupid enough to fall for it.

  4. Athelstan permalink
    July 10, 2018 10:29 am

    so let’s begin our journey down Hysteria Lane there.

    Best one liner, about the alarmists I’ve heard in many a long year!

    And the rest of it – well it’s Roy Spencer, filleting the whack jobs of alarmunism, at its very best.

    Well said Prof. Spencer.

  5. July 10, 2018 11:34 am

    Soros and his gaggle have been trying for decades to bring down the United States–his stated goal. You have to destroy the middle class in order to do that. Obama was well on the way with his war on coal and chasing manufacturing jobs to other countries with tax and regulations. Hillary was supposed to put the nail in the coffin.

    And then along came Donald who knows this bunch well–world-wide. He understands what they are about and he loves this country. That is a deadly combination for Soros & Gaggle (sounds like a good name for a pub).

    Donald Trump listens to the likes of Dr. Roy Spencer on climate. It is why we pulled out of the George Soros inspired Paris Climate Accord. He does not suffer fools lightly.

    In 500 days under Trump, our economy is roaring, coal is being mined, steel mills are opening again, and unemployment is at 4% instead of the almost 20% under Obama. The tax cuts allowed business to expand and give their employees more money. Keep in mind that the tariffs deal is to get people to the bargaining table. No more eating our lunch. He wants fair and reciprocal trade. So if high tariffs on our goods is the way of the world–he will put the same of their goods.

    Seems as though climate is about all they have left. Thanks to the likes of Dr. Roy Spencer, holes are being created in that by him and his colleagues AND President Donald Trump. “Hysteria” served daily cannot be “sustained”, to use one of their favorite terms. Emotionally people cannot be kept on that plane forever. Summer is hot. What is new about that? Nothing.

    • Gerry, England permalink
      July 10, 2018 1:01 pm

      I hope the great man enjoys his visit to the UK this week.

    • Phil permalink
      July 11, 2018 7:27 am

      “Soros and Gaggle – sounds like a good name for a pub.”

      Sounds more like a firm of ambulance-chasing lawyers to me…

  6. July 10, 2018 1:12 pm

    The so-called National Infrastructure Commission in the UK has gone full green-blob, low carbon is all that matters, as long as its “renewable” rather than nuclear, no mention of intermittency, the green fairies must have promised unlimited storage:

    Lie back and think of England, as the green and EU blobs have their way with you.

  7. July 10, 2018 1:32 pm

    Reblogged this on Climate Collections.

  8. Green Sand permalink
    July 10, 2018 2:26 pm

    The loonies are at it again. This time ‘The National Infrastructure Commission’ (me neither)

    ‘Britain’s nuclear ambition must make way for renewable energy, warns commission ‘

    “Britain’s first independent infrastructure review has poured cold water on plans to invest billions of pounds in a string of new nuclear power stations, in favour of cheaper wind and solar power.

    The National Infrastructure Commission dealt a blow to the Government’s nuclear ambitions by warning ministers against striking a deal for more than one follow-up to the Hinkley Point C project before 2025.

    Instead, billions of pounds should be funnelled into renewable power and energy efficiency measures for homes and businesses…..”

    This comes at a time when the rest of the world is starting to recognise the futility of renewables and cutting investment and subsidy for wind and solar!

    • July 10, 2018 3:09 pm

      The road transport chapter is just as bad, it reads like marketing material for electric cars, full of useless soundbites such as “electric cars are rapidly getting cheaper”.

  9. Broadlands permalink
    July 10, 2018 2:29 pm

    Once again… more scaremongering with no solution offered to the impending “catastrophe” if we continue. Rational and critical examination of the data does not count as a solution. If it did too many large investments in “global warming” would turn into large losses.

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