Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies of Tropical Storm Chantal’s Forecasted Storm Track

INITIAL NOTE: This post has nothing to do with the Kerry Emanuel’s new climate model-based paper, Downscaling CMIP5 climate models shows increased tropical cyclone activity over the 21st century, but feel free to comment about it. The USA Today article here about Kerry Emanuel’s paper has interviews with Judith Curry and Roger Pielke, Jr., both of whom appear a bit skeptical.

We know that climate models cannot simulate the sea surface temperature anomalies of the past 31 years.  See here.  So why should we have any confidence in a climate model-based study of hurricanes that depends on flawed simulations of sea surface temperatures?  We shouldn’t. Also, tropical cyclones are strongly impacted by El Niño and La Niña events, and climate models still can’t simulate El Niños and La Niñas. Kerry Emanuel’s new climate model-based paper is nothing more than computer-aided speculation, using models that can’t simulate fundamental components of the study. 

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NOAA announced the formation of Tropical Storm Chantal yesterday. The media reacted with headlines like USAToday’s Tropical Storm Chantal races toward Caribbean. Not to be outdone, WunderGround’s headline reads Tropical Storm Chantal: a Likely Harbinger of an Active Atlantic Hurricane Season.

This a quick look at the sea surface temperature anomalies along Chantal’s past and forecast storm track, using Reynolds OI.v2 sea surface temperature data. It was prepared in anticipation of the typical claims about the influence of global warming on tropical storms and hurricanes. I’ve divided the storm track into two regions shown in red in Figure 1. We’ll call the more southern region the Western Main Development Region. The more northern one will represent the sea surface temperature anomalies off Cuba and the East Coast of Florida. We’ll present the monthly and weekly sea surface temperature anomalies.

Figure 1

Figure 1

As a reminder, warm sea surface temperatures feed tropical storms, not sea surface temperature anomalies. Seasonal sea surface temperatures are obviously warm enough to sustain a tropical storm.

WESTERN MAIN DEVELOPMENT REGION

Figures 2 and 3 present the monthly and weekly sea surface temperature anomalies for the western Main Development Region. We’re using the coordinates of 10N-20N, 75W-50W. Sea surface temperatures in this region are above the base year (1971-2000) values, but they are nowhere close to the highs experienced a couple of years ago.

Figure 2

Figure 2

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Figure 3

Figure 3

OFF CUBA AND EAST COAST OF FLORIDA

Monthly and weekly sea surface temperature anomalies off Cuba and the East Coast of Florida (20N-30N, 80W-70W) are below their respective 1971-2000 averages. See Figures 4 and 5.

Figure 4

Figure 4

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Figure 5

Figure 5

NATURAL WARMING OF THE OCEANS

For four years, I’ve been illustrating and discussing how ocean heat content and satellite-era sea surface temperature data indicate the oceans warmed naturally. That doesn’t stop climate change alarmists from making all sorts of nonsensical claims.  If the natural warming of the oceans is new to you, refer to the illustrated essay “The Manmade Global Warming Challenge” [42MB].

CLOSING

There’s nothing unusual about the sea surface temperature anomalies of the western Main Development Region in the North Atlantic. There is, however, something unusual about the sea surface temperature anomalies off Cuba and the east coast of Florida. In a world where we’ve been told that greenhouse gases are responsible for global warming, the sea surface temperature anomalies off Cuba and the east coast of Florida are below their 1971-2000 averages.

SOURCE

The Sea Surface Temperature anomaly data used in this post is available through the NOAA NOMADS website:

http://nomad1.ncep.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/pdisp_sst.sh

or:

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

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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.
This entry was posted in Hurricanes, SST Update. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies of Tropical Storm Chantal’s Forecasted Storm Track

  1. Green Sand says:

    Thanks Bob, a very interesting logical study.

    For most of the year there has been cold anomalies stretching from Cuba to Europe as though the Gulf Stream was running colder than normal? Bit of a simplistic description I know but will wait and see how much longer it persists:-

  2. Bob Tisdale says:

    Green Sand, it may be a simple description but the Gulf Stream has been cooler than it had been for a while. Hopefully, that’s another sign that the AMO has peaked and that the North Atlantic won’t be adding to the warming.

  3. hunter says:

    Once again the climate fails in its obligation to make AGW predictions come true.

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