February 2012 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomaly Update

OFF-TOPIC NEWS

Due to the popularity of If the IPCC was Selling Manmade Global Warming as a Product, Would the FTC Stop their Deceptive Ads? in .pdf form, I will be publishing a Kindle edition hopefully this week. The price of the Kindle edition will be $8.00, and the price of the .pdf edition will be has been raised to $10.00. Buy a copy in .pdf format.

ABRUPT REBOUND IN GLOBAL SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURE ANOMALIES

The significant rise in global sea surface temperature anomalies was first shown in the PRELIMINARY February 2012 SST Anomaly Update. They warmed about 0.16 deg C in two weeks, and they’ve taken a quick downturn last week. They are presently at +0.168 deg C.

(15) Weekly Global Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

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Much of the warming took place in the eastern tropical Pacific and eastern South Pacific.

Animation 1

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NINO1+2 sea surface temperature anomalies have been near +1.0 deg C for the past few weeks. But there appears to be a significant seasonal component in NINO1+2 data so it’s a poor indicator.

(16) NINO1+2

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And part of the warming resulted from the decay of the La Niña. Weekly NINO3.4 sea surface temperature anomalies had warmed well into ENSO-neutral temperatures, but have dropped just below the -0.5 deg C threshold again over the past week. They are now at -0.516 deg C.

(14) Weekly NINO3.4 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

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MONTHLY SST ANOMALY MAP

The following is a Global map of Reynolds OI.v2 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) anomalies for February 2012 downloaded from the NOMADS website. The contour levels are set at 0.5 deg C, and white is set at zero.

February 2012 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies Map

(Global SST Anomaly = +0.122 deg C)

MONTHLY OVERVIEW

The Monthly NINO3.4 SST Anomaly rebounded in February 2012 (about +0.373 deg C) to -0.663 deg C.

As a result, Global Sea Surface Temperature anomalies also warmed. A minor decline in the Northern Hemisphere data was overwhelmed by an increase in the Southern Hemisphere data. The monthly Global Sea Surface Temperature anomalies are presently at +0.122 deg C.

(1) Global Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies

Monthly Change = +0.078 deg C

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(2) NINO3.4 Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies

(5S-5N, 170W-120W)

Monthly Change = +0.373 deg C

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THE EAST PACIFIC VERSUS THE REST OF THE WORLD

The East Pacific and the Rest-Of-The-World (Atlantic-Indian-West Pacific) datasets were first discussed in the post Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies – East Pacific Versus The Rest Of The World.Both datasets have been adjusted for the impacts of volcanic aerosols. The global oceans were divided into these two subsets to illustrate two facts. First, the linear trend of the volcano-adjusted East Pacific (90S-90N, 180-80W) Sea Surface Temperature anomalies since the start of the Reynolds OI.v2 dataset is basically flat. The East Pacific linear trend varies with each monthly update. But it won’t vary significantly between El Niño and La Niña events.

(3) Volcano-Adjusted East Pacific Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(90S-90N, 180-80W)

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And second, the volcano-adjusted Sea Surface Temperature anomalies for the Rest of the World (90S-90N, 80W-180) rise in very clear steps, in response to the significant 1986/87/88 and 1997/98 El Niño/La Niña events. It also appears as though the Sea Surface Temperature anomalies of this dataset are making another upward shift in response to the most recent ENSO event. For those who are interested in the actual trends of the Sea Surface Temperature anomalies between the 1986/87/88 and 1997/98 El Niño events and between the 1997/98 and 2009/10 El Niño events refer to Figure 4 in Does The Sea Surface Temperature Record Support The Hypothesis Of Anthropogenic Global Warming? I further described (at an introductory level) the ENSO-related processes that cause these upward steps in the post ENSO Indices Do Not Represent The Process Of ENSO Or Its Impact On Global Temperature.

(4) Volcano-Adjusted Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies For The Rest of the World

(90S-90N, 80W-180)

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The periods used for the average Rest-Of-The-World Sea Surface Temperature anomalies between the significant El Niño events of 1982/83, 1986/87/88, 1997/98, and 2009/10 are determined as follows. Using the NOAA Oceanic Nino Index(ONI) for the official months of those El Niño events, I shifted (lagged) those El Niño periods by six months to accommodate the lag between NINO3.4 SST anomalies and the response of the Rest-Of-The-World Sea Surface Temperature anomalies, then deleted the Rest-Of-The-World data that corresponds to those significant El Niño events. I then averaged the Rest-Of-The-World SST anomalies between those El Niño-related gaps.

The “Nov 2010 to Present” average varies with each update. As noted in the post Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies – East Pacific Versus The Rest Of The World, it will be interesting to see where that Sea Surface Temperature anomaly average settles out, if it does, before the next significant El Niño drives them higher.

Of course, something could shift. Will the upward ratcheting continue when the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO) decides to turn around and start its decline? The upward steps would not continue in the North Atlantic, but would the AMO impact the upward steps in other portions of the globe? For more information about the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation, refer to the post An Introduction To ENSO, AMO, and PDO — Part 2.

The Sea Surface Temperature anomalies of the East Pacific Ocean, or approximately 33% of the surface area of the global oceans, have decreased slightly since 1982 based on the linear trend. And between upward shifts, the Sea Surface Temperature anomalies for the rest of the world (67% of the global ocean surface area) remain relatively flat. Anthropogenic forcings are said to be responsible for most of the rise in global surface temperatures over this period, but the Sea Surface Temperature anomaly graphs of those two areas prompt a two-part question: Since 1982, what anthropogenic global warming processes would overlook the Sea Surface Temperatures of 33% of the global oceans and have an impact on the other 67% but only during the months of the significant El Niño events of 1986/87/88, 1997/98 and 2009/10?

NOTE ABOUT THE DATA

The MONTHLY graphs illustrate raw monthly OI.v2 SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURE anomaly data from November 1981 to February 2012, as it is presented by the NOAA NOMADS website linked at the end of the post. I’ve added the 13-month running-average filter to smooth out the seasonal variations.

MONTHLY INDIVIDUAL OCEAN AND HEMISPHERIC SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURE UPDATES

(5) Northern Hemisphere Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

Monthly Change = -0.021 deg C

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(6) Southern Hemisphere Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

Monthly Change = +0.155 deg C

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(7) North Atlantic Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(0 to 70N, 80W to 0)

Monthly Change = -0.048 deg C

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(8) South Atlantic Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(0 to 60S, 70W to 20E)

Monthly Change = +0.125 deg C

Note: I discussed the (now apparently temporary) upward shift in the South Atlantic Sea Surface Temperature anomalies in the post The 2009/10 Warming Of The South Atlantic. It looks as though the South Atlantic sea surface temperature anomalies MAYreturn to the level they were at before that surge, and where they had been since the late 1980s. We’ll have to see where things settle.

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(9) North Pacific Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(0 to 65N, 100E to 90W)

Monthly Change = +0.032 Deg C

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(10) South Pacific Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(0 to 60S, 120E to 70W)

Monthly Change = +0.224 deg C

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(11) Indian Ocean Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(60S to 30N, 20E to 120E)

Monthly Change = +0.063 deg C

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(12) Arctic Ocean Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(65N to 90N)

Monthly Change = -0.005 deg C

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(13) Southern Ocean Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomalies

(90S-60S)

Monthly Change = +0.026 deg C

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ABOUT: Bob Tisdale – Climate Observations

SOURCE

The Reynolds Optimally Interpolated Sea Surface Temperature Data (OISST) are available through the NOAA National Operational Model Archive & Distribution System (NOMADS).

http://nomad3.ncep.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/pdisp_sst.sh

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About Bob Tisdale

Research interest: the long-term aftereffects of El Niño and La Nina events on global sea surface temperature and ocean heat content. Author of the ebook Who Turned on the Heat? and regular contributor at WattsUpWithThat.
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4 Responses to February 2012 Sea Surface Temperature (SST) Anomaly Update

  1. Tom Sherman says:

    Bob–Please post anywhere appropriate: “critique of convective ‘upwell’ metaphor in accounting for deepwater destruction in equatorial & northern Pac.”
    Annihilation of deep-water at discrete sites (@ 5Sv cumulatively according to Kawabe & Fujio; 2010 Journ. Oc., 66, pp389-403) can be quite straightforwardly accounted for as product of locally enhanced downward diffusive insolative heat transfer.
    The same diffusive warming creates surface-water but not necessarily at instantaneous matching rate–as there is possibility of time-varying accumulation or storage in, say, the western warm pool ( while surface thru-currents are maintained constant). [Storage in deep layer, a la Straneo's restratifying scheme for Lab. ( Heat & Freshwater..Lab; 2006 Jour. Phy. Oc., 36, pp606-628) might be less likely here due to absence of isolating basin structure.]
    [Other notes on K & F circ. scheme: (1) eastern equatorial 'upwelling' (shallow intra-surface-layer) has no role, and (2) there is prevalent 'subwelling', ie destratification of deep-layer without net deep destruction and without associated net surface layer creation; accounting for this seeming bottom-up heating might require invoking of deep gyre lateral diffusive heat transport.]

  2. Doug Cotton says:

    Within about 24 hours there will be a new paper Radiated Energy and the Second Law of Thermodynamics at http://principia-scientific.org/

    In over 6,000 words it covers a wide range of reasons why carbon dioxide can have no warming effect and only a slight cooling effect.

    This is only the sixth paper to be accepted by this organisation which is dedicated to the truth in science.

  3. Pingback: The Sudden Rebound in Weekly Global Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies | Bob Tisdale – Climate Observations

  4. Pingback: decreasing cyclones… | pindanpost

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