How absurd is 4 °C

I have seen a lot of “news” lately about he Earth’s temperature in the year 2100.  For a long time the projection has been 3 °C, but lately the claim has bumped up to 4 °C.  The idea of 3 °C was pretty silly all by itself which makes the 4°C really stupid.  However I have never taken the time before to project out just what the Earth’s real temperature would look like at 4 °C, so I figured this was a good opportunity to go ahead and do that.

Remember that instead of a simple chart that warmists use to show warming, I always use the Earth’s actual temperature.  When I first charted the 4 °C anomaly in the year 2100 the only thing I could do is laugh at how absurd the result is.  This graphic is huge, so make sure you take a look at it full size to really see the scope of what 4 °C looks like.


The Inconvenient Skeptic

(Black) Global Monthly Temperature, (Purple) Global Monthly Temperature anomaly. This is how it would have to change by the year 2100 for the anomaly to increase to 4 °C.


I show the last 30 years (which is the time frame that they are arguing that global warming has been taking place) on the chart, but because of the scale it isn’t as clear as I would like it to be, so here is the period since 1979 using the same scale.  Is there anything at all resembling what would have to happen by the year 2100?


The Inconvenient Skeptic

Same scale as the previous chart. This is all measured temperature data.


Clearly there is nothing in how the Earth’s temperature is behaving now to indicate that the projection will take place.  If the trend over the past 15 years were to continue, the the global temperature would increase by 0.45 °C by the year 2100.  Predicting 4 deg-C is simply ludicrous.

The full projection is a really massive chart so you should be able to play with it quite a bit, but here are some of the highlights.  In the year 2100 their projection will have the Earth’s temperature in the winter the same as the Earth’s temperature in the summer today.  So January will be as warm as July in the year 2100.  Think about that one for a minute.  WTF are they thinking comes to mind.

When I break it down by hemisphere, the projection gets even more absurd, as if January being as warm as July wasn’t stupid enough.  First I will show the projection of the Northern Hemisphere.

The Inconvenient Skeptic

(Black) NH temperature, (Green) NH temperature anomaly based on the NH accounting for 75% of the 4 °C warming.


Please note that the scales for anomaly and actual temperature are different.  The 75% of the warming being in the NH requires that the NH warm up 6 °C by the year 2100.  Since it is well understood that the NH would warm up more than the SH, this is the simplest way to do the projection.  In order for 4 °C to happen, by the year 2100 the winter in the NH must be as warm as it is in April today.  That would be as cold as the NH could go in a world that warm.  The depths of winter would be April weather.  Summer, well that would be something else.  There is no comparison for how HOT the NH would be in that situation, but I certainly wouldn’t want summers like that.

The actual trend of the NH would have to 14 times higher than it is now for that type of warming to take place.  So only off by a little bit, but I am sure if they keep spending money on computer models they will figure out they are wrong, at least by the year 2100…

Since I leave the SH to only have to warm up 2 °C by the year 2100 for the projection, it is by far the closest.  It is only off by a factor of 4.5 times.  Of course if I uniformly warmed the Earth then the SH would be off by much more, but the NH wouldn’t be as absurdly wrong.

The Inconvenient Skeptic

(Black) SH temperature, (Blue) SH temperature anomaly


In such a world the SH would be warmer than the NH is today, which would be a pretty substantial change in climate for much of the Earth’s oceans.  I hesitated making the change smaller here while allowing the NH to change more, but already the projection is in the realm of fantasy.

Why are these projections so absurd though?  That will be the next article I am putting together which will take these actual temperatures for the hemispheres and determine the energy balance for the Earth in those conditions.  The Earth can warm up a lot, but such temperatures are very unstable and the result of such warming will be dramatic cooling.  I will show what that is true in the next article.

Posted in Bad Science by inconvenientskeptic on December 3rd, 2012 at 3:15 pm.


This post has 6 comments

  1. The temperature in the next ten thousand years will be well bounded in the same range as the temperature of the past ten thousand years. That will be within plus or minus two degrees of the average of the past ten thousand years.

  2. inconvenientskeptic Dec 3rd 2012

    I consider unlikely that the next 10,000 will be bounded like the past 10k. The average of the past million years is 5 °C cooler than it is today. The next 10,000 years is more likely than not to be closer to that.

  3. If you spend a few minutes reading my paper and at least the abstract of the paper published by the American Institute of Physics (cited in reference (8) in my reference [13]) you might understand what happens in the atmospheric physics of both Earth and Venus.

    I’m still waiting for a satisfactory alternative explanation from anyone in the world regarding the Venus surface temperature.

    Pressure does not maintain high temperatures all by itself, anywhere, not even on Venus. So forget that “explanation.”

    My paper is up for PROM (Peer Review in Open Media) for a month, so feel free to publish a rebuttal or debate it with some of these members of PSI. Such a review system far outstrips the “peer-review” system used for typical pro-AGW publications.

    Doug Cotton

  4. Maybe you can help me understand something about this average temperature idea. I wondered for a long time why 2 degrees warming was significant. Then I started wondering how many data points are contained in the average. If there are thousands, then raising the temperature average by 2 degrees would be significant. To raise an average containing 5000 data points, it seems the temperature would either have to raise uniformly 2 degrees everywhere (is that the theory?) or some parts of the planet would become very, very warm. If instead of looking at the average, we looked at the median and mode, would we get a “better” number. I realize that natural temperature variation can account for the rise. What I am wondering is if the use of the “average” is actually a useful statistic. It seems if there are thousands of data points, the average is not so useful.

  5. inconvenientskeptic Dec 12th 2012


    This is a big can of worms. There are ~1400 locations for measuring the planet Earth’s temperature. They are also not very evenly spaced. So there is oversampling in places where people live and undersampling in places where we don’t.

    The average by itself isn’t all that helpful either, especially because it is anomaly and not actual temperature. Today is 12-12-12 and if I said today was +4 deg-C anomaly that doesn’t tell you if it is cold or warmer, it is just warmer than average.

    People expect each day to be different than average and for the most part that expectation is met. Very few days are average and the same is true for years.

    What I am trying to show is that for a 4 deg-C warming to take place, January would have to be as warm as July is globally and the NH will never cool down more than it does now in April. That is not going to happen.

  6. Your answer helps. 1400 is a large number of locations and I do suspect that average is not the right statistic. Your graph shows what I had suspected from the averaging of a large number of sights. The increase worldwide would have to be unrealistically high to raise the average in a data set that large. Your graph points this out very clearly. I just think more in numbers than graphs sometimes!

    I started wondering about this when averaging blood sugar numbers. There is a test that measures the averages over 2 to 3 month. I wanted to see how many “normal” range measurements it took to get get of one high numbers, 400 (the anomaly). It was surprising how many “normals” it takes to get rid of one very far outlying number in the sequence. Unlike some climate change calculations, one cannot alter these values when calculating the average. It took over 20 normals to return the average to normal with that one high number, depending on the number of data points input.

    Your blog gets me thinking!

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