Major Media Spread Erroneous U.K. Temperature Data

December 8th, 2009 3:12 PM

If you go to Google today and search on the phrase "warmest decade" you will get a result set with thousands of breathless articles claiming that 2000 to 2009 is the warmest decade on record. This is on the cusp of an announcement from the UN climate talks in Copenhagen where world leaders are desperate to speed past Climategate and refocus the world's attention on their apocalyptic global warming agenda.

The media that couldn't bring themselves to report on the growing scandal surrounding falsified data is all on board with reporting this latest news. Yet it is clear that the Huffington Post, CBS News, the New York Times and others didn't even bother to check the data that was released from the the UK MET (UK Government Department of Climate and Weather Change). If they had they would have immediately discovered what I found, that the US csv (comma delimited) data dump from 1851 to 2009 is erroneous in its compilation. The January column for each year shows period information instead of temperature records and the latitude appears transposed as well. It appears that they incorrectly shifted the column headers when compling the dump. (Load the raw file into Excel and compare it with the UK csv data to see the erroneous data columns side by side. Data provided by the Guardian UK.) 

This data was provided as a means to "dampen the row over the hacked climate science emails".

The Met Office also released the raw data from around 1,500 global monitoring stations in an effort to satisfy critics who have demanded that researchers be more transparent with their data in the wake of the email hacking row at the University of East Anglia. (UK Guardian, Met Office figures confirm noughties as warmest decade in recorded history)

Don't jump to any conclusions that this is some sort of conspiracy or that the data itself is incorrect. That can not be surmised without extra information. It is just another indication of the desperation by a group of scientists, policy makers and scare mongers that are too sloppy to check their own facts and figures; even before releasing it to the whole world as proof to counter valid questions concerning the validity of their data.

With full unquestioning faith we are expected to buy into this sloppy sort of science as a foundation toward making public policy that will affect nations of the world's people for generations to come. If they can't even get the release of the simplest of data sets correct then what are we to wonder about what it is that they got wrong?

Since I fully expect them to fix this error (I would) you can find the originals that I downloaded here, UK, and here, US. Terry Trippany is The Watcher at Watcher of Weasels. You can follow us on Twitter. The image accompanying this article appeared in the UK Guardian article reporting on the announcement.