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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

NODC Corrections to Ocean Heat Content (0-700m) Data Part 4

I’ve moved to WordPress.  This post can now be found at NODC Corrections to Ocean Heat Content (0-700m) Data Part 4
I have updated the following two posts to reflect the NODC’s corrections to the April to June 2009 Ocean Heat Content data:

1. ENSO Dominates NODC Ocean Heat Content (0-700 Meters) Data

2. North Atlantic Ocean Heat Content (0-700 Meters) Is Governed By Natural Variables

For those who have read those posts, as predicted, the NODC’s corrections had no impact on them. I updated those posts to prevent someone from claiming they contain outdated or erroneous data.

That should be the end of the updates and corrections to the NODC OHC posts. Now on to some new stuff.


John said...

Hi Bob -

Not sure if you're one to answer this, or perhaps someone else who reads the blog, but I'm trying to parse something.

I mentioned in a past comment that Dr. Spencer, using the latest 9 years of CERES data, shows more trapping of radiation (or less net loss of radiation) in the climate system of about 1 W/m-2 (it's the 9/26/09 posting on his website). So there is less net loss of radiation in the system.

How can this be reconciled with not only the flat SST temperatures, but flat TLT temperatures and flat OHC since 2003?

This is curious for both sides of the GW issue. Where is that trapped radiation going, regardless of the cause?

Anonymous said...


Thanks for all the hard work on checking the impact of the corrections and for the original analysis. I find your whole blog fascinating and, as I'll soon show, have always been a bit confused about El Nino.

When I first heard about El Nino it was about the distribution of sea temperatures – effectively a ‘pushing’ of sea heat to different parts of the coast around (mainly) South America. (This was from New Scientist c.1987). So it was a peculiar ‘localised’ weather phenomenon.

But the 1998 spike in global temperatures is widely ascribed to El Nino. This is weird. How could ENSO cause the entire earth to get warmer? This would seem to be against the second law of Thermodynamics. Did more energy arrive on earth that year? Did less escape?

So my simplistic and speculative conclusion is that the global temperature trend either has:
a) incorrect weighting to accommodate the ENSO affected areas, or
b) was influenced by heat being brought from within the earth’s system to the smaller part of the earth’s system that is being measured in the global temperature trend.

Do you have any views on this. Thanks to you I'm slowly understanding the various different temperature records SST, 0-700m etc but this question has been preying on my mind. All/any comments welcome.

Bob Tisdale said...

Anonymous: Here are a few links to help overcome your misunderstandings about ENSO events. Both are NOAA FAQ webpages.



As you'll discover, during a significant El Nino like the one in 1997/98, warm water to depths of a few hundred meters is shifted from the Pacific Warm Pool to the surface of the central and eastern tropical Pacific. This releases large amounts of heat into the atmosphere. And yes this does raise TLT anomalies globally. Much of the heat is transported by atmospheric processes to the mid-to-high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere where it lingers, causing upward step changes in TLT anomalies.

Significant ENSO events also cause changes in atmospheric circulation which raise SST anomalies throughout the global oceans.

And there are also oceanic processes that transport the warm water (that had traveled east during the El Nino) to the mid latitudes of the Western Pacific and the East Indian Oceans. This can be seen in a video I created using an animation of SSH anomalies available from JPL. The 1997/98 El Nino starts with two Kelvin waves (pockets of warm water) traveling east across the equatorial Pacific. Then SSH "explodes" in the eastern tropical Pacific.


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