Is This What Global Cooling Looks Like?

Early in the summer, a heat wave in the U.S. caused hysteria to break out among climate alarmists and their media enablers. The Associated Press headlined, “This US summer is ‘what global warming looks like.’”

Kevin Trenberth, head of climate analysis at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in fire-charred Colorado, said these are the very record-breaking conditions he has said would happen, but many people wouldn’t listen. So it’s I told-you-so time, he said. …

“What we’re seeing really is a window into what global warming really looks like,” said Princeton University geosciences and international affairs professor Michael Oppenheimer. “It looks like heat. It looks like fires. It looks like this kind of environmental disasters.”

Sure. Of course, there is nothing new about heat in the summer or forest fires. But hysteria was rampant, amid claims, which we ridiculed, that global warming was causing street lights to melt.

The worm inevitably turns: currently most of the U.S. is experiencing unusually cool weather. Some parts of northern Minnesota have already gotten more than a foot of snow. (Not here in the Minneapolis suburbs, thankfully.) A reader at Watts Up With That went to the trouble of charting the high and low temperature records that were set during the week of October 1 through October 8. (You might not realize this from news coverage, but high and low temperature records are being set, somewhere, all the time.) First the data:

Total Records: 2079
Rainfall: 402
Snowfall: 74
High Temperatures: 138
Low Temperatures: 386
Lowest Max Temperatures: 768
Highest Min Temperatures: 311

Total number of high temperature type records: 138 + 311 = 449

Total number of low temperature type records: 386 + 768 = 1154

Source: NOAA data via HW Records Center.

Now the map:

So the alarmists immediately retort, That isn’t climate, it’s just weather! Exactly. Just like the hot weather in June. That’s regional, not global! Yes. Like the high temperatures in June.

Climate reality isn’t too hard to figure out. Sometimes it is hot, and sometimes it is cold. If it is unusually hot in one place, the law of conservation of energy says that it will be unusually cold somewhere else. You have to average it all out to get meaningful data, and that is very hard to do, even in 2012–let alone trying to compare global averages today with those hundreds of years ago. So a considerable degree of skepticism is appropriate.

In the meantime, don’t hold your breath waiting for the Associated Press to tell you that “This is what global cooling looks like.”

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