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Matt McGrath Makes A Fool Of Himself–Part 94

April 15, 2020

By Paul Homewood


h/t Mr Grim


Climate Tales: Episode 94 – The BBC Discovers Weather


While high temperatures were critical to the melting seen in Greenland last year, scientists say that clear blue skies also played a key role.

In a study, they found that a record number of cloud free days saw more sunlight hit the surface while snowfall was also reduced.

These conditions were due to wobbles in the fast moving jet stream air current that also trapped heat over Europe.

As a result, Greenland’s ice sheet lost an estimated 600 billion tonnes.

Current climate models don’t include the impact of the wandering jet stream say the authors, and may be underestimating the impact of warming.

Researchers found that high pressure weather conditions prevailed over Greenland for record amounts of time.

They believe this is connected to what’s termed the "waviness" in the jet stream, the giant current of air that mostly flows from west to east around the globe.

As the current becomes more wobbly, it bends north, and high pressure systems that would normally move through in a few days become "blocked’ over Greenland.

These systems had different impacts depending on the part of Greenland you were in.

In the southern part of the island, the authors say, it caused clearer skies with more sunlight hitting the surface.

The cloud-free days brought less snow, which meant that 50 billion fewer tonnes were added to the ice sheet.

The absence of snow also exposed bare, dark ice in some place which absorbed more heat – contributing to the melt.

In other parts of Greenland, the changing atmospheric patterns had different but equally damaging impacts.

In northern and western region, the swirling but stuck high pressure systems pulled in warm air from southern latitudes.

Dr Tedesco explained that Greenland in 2019 experienced the largest drop in surface mass balance since records began in 1948.

The term surface mass balance describes the overall state of the ice sheet after accounting for gains from snowfall and losses from surface melt-water run-off.

The authors believe their study explains why, despite the fact that 2019 was not as warm as 2012, last year produced a record drop in surface mass balance.

The main message of the paper is that the very high melt was mostly driven by clear skies and direct melting rather than necessarily being attributable to unusually high temperatures over the ice sheet – a radiatively-driven, rather than thermally-driven, melt season as they put it," said Dr Ruth Mottram, a climate scientist at the Danish Meteorological Institute in Copenhagen.


At no point do any of these junk scientists prove that these sort of weather events are in any way unprecedented or unnatural.

Talking of junk science, the authors cannot even get their facts right. They claim that Greenland in 2019 experienced the largest drop in surface mass balance since records began in 1948. In reality much greater ice loss occurred in 2012.




Despite the wailing about “worse than we thought”, weather actually works both ways.

The summer of 2018 was particularly cold and wet, and the ice sheet added much more ice than average. The year before saw a snowy winter, with the same result, the SMB ended up well above average:




BTW – McGrath also highlights the fact that last December, researchers reported that the Greenland ice sheet was melting seven times faster than it had been during the 1990s.

Perhaps he should have had a word with his colleague Jonathan Amos, who laughingly calls himself the BBC Science Correspondent. Mr Amos might recall what he wrote in 2003!


  1. Joe Public permalink
    April 15, 2020 7:35 pm

    For balance – while clear blue skies seen in Greenland last year led to more sunlight hittting its surface, Britain suffered the opposite!

    Despite an increase in solar capacity, “… generation (in 2019) from solar photovoltaics decreased by 1.4 per cent, due to average sunlight hours being down, 2018 had been a record year for solar generation.” (2018 had been a record year for solar generation because capacity increased!)

    Click to access Press_Notice_March_2020.pdf

  2. John Palmer permalink
    April 15, 2020 7:38 pm

    … only ‘part 94’, Paul??? Must be more than that – he’s a serial offender!

  3. Phillip Bratby permalink
    April 15, 2020 7:38 pm

    Whenever these pseudo (or junk) scientists talk about trapping heat, I know for certain the rest will be nothing but BS.

  4. Broadlands permalink
    April 15, 2020 7:42 pm

    Are those wandering jet streams not natural events unaffected by humans oxidizing carbon for their energy needs?

    “Current climate models don’t include the impact of the wandering jet stream say the authors, and may be underestimating the impact of warming.” Or, overestimating! If one doesn’t work, try the other? Adjust the data or the model.

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      April 15, 2020 8:22 pm

      As is well documented, a wandering jet stream was blamed on global cooling in the disappeared 20thC cooling period.

      Although it is not impossible that opposite changes could produce the same effect – it is unlikely. So what is the ‘expert’ explanation? They don’t need one if they disappear the difficult and inconvenient stuff and rewrite climate history.

  5. MrGrimNasty permalink
    April 15, 2020 8:31 pm

    NTZ is always posting inconvenient Greenland news. Just Google ‘Notrickszone Greenland’ – at least 4 recent articles. Headlines:-

    4/5C warmer than today 9000yrs ago.
    NASA no warming in nearly 100yrs.
    Recent cooling 26/47 largest glaciers stable or gaining.
    Most of last 10000yrs ice sheet/glacier volume smaller than today.

  6. C Lynch permalink
    April 15, 2020 9:04 pm

    Anyone enlighten me as to Matt Mc Graths ‘qualifications’. I strongly suspect he is not a climate scientist broad and all as that term is defined.

  7. cajwbroomhill permalink
    April 15, 2020 10:13 pm

    Prediction is very difficult, especially of future events, an old chestnut paraphrased but in climate predictions the basic faults result from failure to understand and take account of the multitude of factors governing systems too complex for any human mind.
    Just consider inaccuracies in weather forecasts for the following 24hours.
    The warmists claim accurate predictions over decades hence.
    Likewise, AGW results from GIGO-based analyses..

  8. dfhunter permalink
    April 16, 2020 1:17 am

    Find it hard to believe “Current climate models don’t include the impact of the wandering jet stream”

    has Matt even bothered to ask I wonder!!!

    my guess – no, he just cuts & pastes the press release & earns his big bucks in 5mts.

    ps – this post sent me looking for who else the BBC employ that are a waste of space/money.

    “Pallab Ghosh” springs to my mind for starters.

    not sure if it’s 100% accurate/up to date, but –

  9. paul weldon permalink
    April 16, 2020 9:18 am

    If one reads the original paper it makes more sense than if you read McGrath. In fact I would hazard to say that it is, apart from the compulsory inclusion of references to climate change, a good description of why the amount of melt took place.
    As far as Paul’s reference to the DMI mass balance graphs to dispute the record mass balance , it is worth noting that the paper states that the mass balance record deficit was over the whole year, not just the summer. That is actually confirmed by the DMI graphs.

    What I would like to know is why supposedly savvy journalists think that the jet stream controls the positioning of high and low pressure areas when in fact it is the other way around (at least that is what I have always understood). Surely the jet stream is only part of the atmospheric circulatory system. It is as much an effect as cause.

    • April 16, 2020 12:25 pm

      Certain jet stream patterns cause particular effects, which then get noticed by humans as unusual weather e.g. ‘blocking’ events. Then climate obsessives try desperately to tie all that to their pet theories.

      • paul weldon permalink
        April 16, 2020 12:34 pm

        So you believe that the jet stream is the cause of effects? If we have a deep depression moving up into the north Atlantic towards the UK, is its position, speed and direction caused by the jet stream? Or is the position of the jet stream not actually governed by the depression itself?

      • April 16, 2020 2:43 pm

        No need to ‘believe’ – it’s standard meteorology.

      • paul weldon permalink
        April 17, 2020 9:35 am

        Sorry, Oldbrew, but your reference does not convince me. The jet stream is mentioned, but not specifically given as the cause of blocking. The met office link to jet steam does not work. I am genuinely curious about why the met office has changed its tack – 20 years ago the jet steam hardy got a mention. Now it is blamed for all our weather. The jet stream is formed by what? I understand the result of bodies of warm and cold air meeting. They are found at the intersection of Hadley cells, so that makes them an effect. I do not trust the met office and their oversimplification.

  10. Gerry, England permalink
    April 16, 2020 10:33 am

    So let me get this straight – clear blue skies produce warmer days than cloudy skies? Well, who would have guessed that as we have lots of blue skies and warm days in the South East at the moment. But since clouds are water vapour and water vapour is treated as increasing warming in the climate models is there not a problem here?

    When it comes to models and the changed jetstream I always recall that during one BBC – MetO weather forecast the admission that during periods of meridional jetstream their models don’t work. Surely they know that Rossby Waves appear during times of solar minimum but can they not bring themselves to use any information connected with the pattern of the sun in case it brings questions of what else does the sun do.

    • paul weldon permalink
      April 16, 2020 12:26 pm

      2 comments to help you get it straight. Firstly, sunny skies do not always mean warm days – not in the winter at least. Secondly, clouds are not water vapour but water droplets. What happens in winter when the area is under the centre of the high pressure is that the air is very dry. Nights are therefore very cold as the heat radiates rapidly to space. If you read the original report you will see that this has been recognised – the authors suggest this is one of the reasons why mean temperature was not higher. That is what happened in Greenland last summer, the south and central areas at least. Warmer and moister air was brought up from more southerly latitudes and together with higher humidity made the north and west warmer. Here in Latvia we had the cold air brought down from the north due to the high pressure, which gave us a near frost in the middle of July which is pretty much unheard of (not widely reported, especially not by the BBC). I am sure you know all this anyway, I think, the basics of the report at least, are sound..

  11. AndyP permalink
    April 16, 2020 11:05 am

    No mention from McGrath or the Beeb about the very cold April USA is experiencing this year. I wonder why? Tony Heller’s blog summarises…

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      April 16, 2020 12:17 pm

      Just weather yin and yang isn’t it, extraordinarily mild here in the UK in Jan and Feb, Mar ordinarily mild +1C for recent years, but April has been crazy, until a few days its CET was running at almost +5C. UK is certainly well on course for the warmest annual mean CET on record. (But I’ll put my neck out like last time it looked odds on, and say again, weather has an uncanny knack of balancing itself out, I was right last time……)

  12. BLACK PEARL permalink
    April 16, 2020 3:04 pm

    Part £94 … is that anything to do with the amount of money he received for being such a could reporter….. er I mean propagandist ?

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