Tuesday, December 27, 2011

State of the Climate Global Analysis Nov 2011


Anyone who remains unconvinced of the veracity of climate change need only review the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) State of the Climate Global Analysis for November 2011.

According to NOAA data, 2010 is tied with 2005 as the warmest year in 131 years of global land and sea temperatures and 2011 is the 12th warmest year on record.

Global Highlights
  • The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for November 2011 was the 12th warmest on record at 13.35°C (55.81°F), which is 0.45°C (0.81°F) above the 20th century average of 12.9°C (55.0°F). The margin of error is +/- 0.07°C (0.13°F).
  • Separately, the global land surface temperature was 0.61°C (1.10°F) above the 20th century average of 5.9°C (42.6°F), making this the 16th warmest November on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.11°C (0.20°F).
  • Warmer-than-average conditions occurred across central and eastern North America, Northern and Western Europe, northern Russia, most of China and the Middle East, southeastern Australia, and southern South America.
  • Cooler-than-average regions included Alaska, western Canada, much of Eastern Europe, Kazakhstan, and southwestern Russia.

Separately, the global land surface temperature was 0.61°C (1.10°F) above the 20th century average of 5.9°C (42.6°F), making this the 16th warmest November on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.11°C (0.20°F).

The November global ocean surface temperature was 0.39°C (0.70°F) above the 20th century average of 15.8°C (60.4°F), making it the 12th warmest November on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.04°C (0.07°F). The warmth was most pronounced across the north central and northwest Pacific, the Labrador Sea, and portions of the mid-latitude Southern oceans..

The November global ocean surface temperature was 0.39°C (0.70°F) above the 20th century average of 15.8°C (60.4°F), making it the 12th warmest November on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.04°C (0.07°F).

The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for the September – November period was 0.52°C (0.94°F) above the 20th century average of 14.0°C (57.1°F), making it the 12th warmest such period on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.09°C (0.16°F.

The September – November worldwide land surface temperature was 0.87°C (1.57°F) above the 20th century average, the seventh warmest such period on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.17°C (0.31°F).
The global ocean surface temperature for September – November was 0.39°C (0.70°F) above the 20th century average and was the 12th warmest such period on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.04°C (0.07°F).

The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for the January – November period was 0.52°C (0.94°F) above the 20th century average of 14.0°C (57.2°F), making it the 11th warmest such period on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.09°C (0.16°F).

The January – November worldwide land surface temperature was 0.84°C (1.51°F) above the 20th century average — the seventh warmest such period on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.20°C (0.36°F).
The global ocean surface temperature for the year to date was 0.41°C (0.74°F) above the 20th century average and was the 11th warmest such period on record. The margin of error is +/- 0.04°C (0.07°F).

The climate phenomenon La Niña continued through November, which helped produce cooler—although still above-average—temperatures on a global scale compared with previous months. The average temperature over land was 0.61°C (1.10°F) above the 20th century average. This marks the coolest monthly average temperature anomaly over land since February 2011 and the coolest November land temperature since 2000. However, it was the 16th warmest November since records began in 1880. Regionally, warmer-than-average conditions occurred across central and eastern North America, Northern and Western Europe, northern Russia, most of China and the Middle East, southeastern Australia, and southern South America.

The November average monthly temperature in Norway was 4.6°C (8.3°F) above average, making this month the country's warmest November since records began in 1900. The average temperature for Northern Norway was 5.3°C (9.5°F) above normal, also a new November record.

According to the UK Met Office, November 2011 was the second warmest November on record for the United Kingdom, Behind 1994, at 2.9°C (5.2°F) above normal. Provisionally, Scotland recorded its warmest November on record.

In Asia, China reported its third warmest November since national records began in 1951, according to the Beijing Climate Center. It was the warmest November on record in 12 provinces and second warmest in four provinces.

Cooler-than-average regions around the globe included Alaska, western Canada, much of Eastern Europe, Kazakhstan, and southwestern Russia. Alaska reported its sixth coolest November on record.

Land tends to absorb and release heat much faster than water. Thus, land temperatures generally fluctuate more rapidly than ocean surface temperatures and this is well illustrated by the global anomaly differences between October and November 2011. While the November land surface temperature anomaly was 0.61°C (1.10°F) and 16th warmest November on record, the October 2011 land temperature was 1.10°C (1.98°F) above average and was the second warmest October on record—a difference of 0.49°C (0.88°F). On the other hand, both the October and November global ocean temperature anomalies were 0.39°C (0.70°F), ranking 11th and 12th warmest for their respective months. In fact, the global monthly ocean temperature anomaly has remained between 0.35°C (0.63°F) and 0.47°C (0.85°F) during all of 2011 to date—a range of only 0.12°C (0.22°F).

La Niña conditions during November kept east central Pacific Ocean surface waters nearly 1°C below average for that region. Sea surface temperatures were also below average in the southern Atlantic Ocean and other parts of the mid-latitude southern oceans. It was notably warmer-than-average across the north central and north west Pacific Ocean, the Labrador Sea, and the southern Indian Ocean. As stated above, the globally averaged ocean temperature was the 12th warmest November on record, but was the coolest November since 2007. According to NOAA's Climate Prediction Center (CPC), La Niña is expected to peak during December 2011–January 2012 and continue through the Northern Hemisphere spring 2012.

Combining the monthly global land and ocean temperatures, November ranked as the 12th warmest November since records began, at 0.45°C (0.81°F) above average, making this the 26th consecutive November and 321st consecutive month with a global temperature above the 20th century average. The last month with below-average temperatures was February 1985. However, November 2011 also marks the coolest November since 2000 and the lowest above-average monthly temperature since February 2011.

La Niña conditions were present during all three Northern Hemisphere autumn (Southern Hemisphere spring) months. Over land, temperatures were notably above normal across most of the Northern Hemisphere higher latitudes, including most of Canada, Northern Europe, and most of Russia. It was cooler than normal in much of the Middle East and part of eastern Russia. The November land temperature was 0.88°C (1.58°F) above average, making this the seventh warmest global land November on record.

Norway recorded its warmest autumn since records began in 1900. The average temperature was 3.0°C (5.4°F) above average, topping the previous record set in 2000 of 2.8°C (5.0°F) above average. It was also Finland's warmest autumn since 1938.

It was the second warmest autumn on record for the United Kingdom in more than a century, with temperatures 2.1°C (3.8°F) above average. November 2006 was the warmest at 2.3°C (4.1°F) above average. In Central England, autumn temperatures were the second warmest in at least 350 years.

While the nationally averaged November temperature for Austria was only about 1°C above normal, the average temperature at high elevation stations was 2.6°C above average, giving this region the second warmest November in the country's 161-year period of record. The warmest autumn in the high-elevation alpine regions occurred in 2006, with temperatures 3.2°C above average, according to Zentralanstalt für Meteorologie und Geodynamik (ZAMG), Austria's National Meteorological Service.

It was the 12th warmest September–November across the global oceans. Sea surface temperatures were warmer than average across the north central and north west Pacific Ocean and parts of the mid-latitude southern oceans. Ocean temperatures were cooler than average in the east central Pacific Ocean, where La Niña conditions were observed, as well as the north east Pacific, the southern Atlantic Ocean, and parts of the mid-latitude southern oceans.

The combined global land and ocean surface temperature for September–November was the 11th warmest such period on record and the coolest since 2007, at 0.53°C (0.95°F) above the 20th century average.

La Niña conditions were present in the east central Pacific Ocean during 2011 to date, with the exception of April through July, when ENSO-neutral conditions prevailed. The January–November 2011 global combined land and ocean temperature anomaly of 0.53°C (0.95°F) was the 11th warmest such period on record but the coolest since 2008 (0.50°C / 0.90°F), which was also a La Niña year. Separately, the January–November global land and global ocean temperatures ranked as the 7th and 11th warmest such periods, respectively.

Much of Europe experienced extreme dryness during November. Germany reported its driest November since records began in 1881, measuring just 61 percent of its average monthly rainfall. Several locations recorded no measureable rainfall. Austria also had its driest November since national records began in 1858, with just 2 percent of average rainfall for the month. The second driest November was recorded in 1920, with 14 percent of average monthly rainfall.

Much-wetter-than-normal conditions occurred across parts of South Asia and northeast Africa. Tropical Depression Keila brought very heavy precipitation to the Arabian Peninsula at the beginning of the month. November rainfall across China was, on average, 57 percent above normal, marking the wettest November since 1983 for the country. It was the wettest November on record for the provinces of Shanxi, Shaanxi, Gansu, Ningxia, and Fujian.

The areas with the wettest anomalies during September–November (Northern Hemisphere fall; Southern Hemisphere spring) included part of southwestern Asia and the Middle East, northern China, and western Australia. The driest anomalies during this period were observed over much of Europe, the central United States, part of northeast Asia, and east central Australia.

The United Kingdom saw large variations in precipitation during autumn. According to the UK Met Office, it was the second wettest September–November on record in Northern Ireland. In contrast, it was the driest such period since 1978 in the Midlands, and the driest since 1985 in East Anglia and southeast England.

© 2011, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

No comments: