The Rabett made an interesting post recently, based on an idea that occurred to him on the subject of the “Cruz pause” (a drawback to slumming at Lucia’s).
If the changes in temperature over short periods (like days or months or even annually) track each other, even just in direction in the satellite and surface records (so) then that is pretty convincing evidence that the problem is a long term drift in one or the other and that on the short term they are measuring the same thing.
Eli’s approach was to compare the land-only part of RSS to the surface temperature data from CRUTEM4, from 2005 through 2015. It occured to me to compare things that are supposed to be measuring the same thing (at least approximately), the lower-troposphere temperature from RSS and UAH, and the lower-troposphere temperature from RATPAC (for the 850-300 hPa level).
As for data from “Wood for Trees,” despite its value (which is considerable), we don’t need no stinkin’ Wood for Trees. Nor do we need to restrict ourselves to post-2005 data, I went for the entire period covered by the satellites. I did, however, average the satellite data over 3-month periods to emulate the RATPAC data. Then I removed the “trend” part (the long-term stuff) from each with a lowess smooth. This enables us to compare the “ups and downs” by comparing what’s left over (a.k.a. residuals). Namely, this:
Just from the satellite-vs-surface comparison, Eli finds that “MSU and CRUTEM4 are consistent on a monthly and even an annual basis.” But for the short-term stuff as shown here, MSU and RATPAC are beyond consistent — they’re stunningly similar. Yes, they’re measuring the same thing, at least (very very) approximately. No doubt about it.
But that doesn’t tell us whether they’re drifting apart. For that we should compare the longer-term stuff, the smooths. Like here:
Yes, they’re drifting apart. No doubt about it either.
This uses UAH v5.6, but Spencer and Christie are trying to switch to their v6, which is a lot closer to the RSS result. Their reasons are unclear — but the suspicious among us might think it’s because it’s a lot closer to the RSS result.
But the upshot is that there is drift — the instrumentation issue, most likely with the satellite data, isn’t a short-term fluctuation thing, it’s a long-term drift thing. As per the chief bunny, I’ll also point you to Nick Stokes.
As for the “Cruz pause,” it’s about as believable as the “Monckton pause.” Interested bunnies can decide for themselves which of the two should feel more insulted by the comparison.
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