This posting was re-published with permission from the NeuralNetWriter

By: Peter Ravenscroft

Geomag anomalies may cause the The GISTEMP maps from NASA to over-read


Text: The satellite temperature maps from NASA may all be nonsense. Here is why.

from Peter Ravenscroft, 20.12.09

No reliable global temperature maps at all?

First, Climategate is worse than we thought, as the data appears to have been deliberately skewed, in the standard global temperature dataset against which all the others we have are calibrated. Christopher Monckton has described the problem in detail here. So, as the satellite map are calibrated against the East Anglia CRU dataset, the world standard, the lurid colours of the planetary temperature hotspots are now suspect.

But we may have a worse problem than mere dishonesty in science and derivative error. We may have serious undetected error of an entirely different sort in the satellite readings.

Just have a look at the big brown patch on the map here:


NASA is saying that in March 2008, that entire region, in essence the whole of Siberia, was between 5 and 8.5 degrees C hotter in Mach 2008 than the average for their baseline period, 1950-1980.

Is this believable? The entire planet is in a huge flap because the world overall may have warmed by something under 1 C degree in a century. We have just all agreed, apparently, to try stop the temperature-tide from coming in, by pegging the rise at 2 degrees C., by some date, relative to the present. King Canute must be rolling about in glee in his grave, since his legendary strand- line stunt was to show his court sycophants that his power was in fact somewhat limited. So, if the temperature is up over 5 degrees in March (northern spring), relative to 30 to 60 year ago, why are there not endless reports of catastrophe from the steppes? Why are the yaks and the Mongols not fleeing west? Or south? Or to the the moon?

Maybe the map is gibberish, through no fault of anyone. And all the rest of them. I will ask James Hansen of the GISS, to give them a fair right of reply. He fields the questions on satellite temperature data, according to their website.

I am not saying that what follows is so, just that it seems very possible.

To start, the Goddard Institute of Space Science at NASA so distrusts its own satellite temperature data for Africa south of the equator that it has taken to blanking it all out. As per the map here.

Next, some information from a little-known place. The Hermanus Magnetic Observatory, is located in the delightful seaside resort of that name. Hermanus is not far from the south end of Africa, and I caught a mackerel in the harbour there, as a kid, fishing with my Dad. So I am sure on that point, at least. The HMO is responsible for monitoring the magnetic field changes for southern Africa and its surrounds, and for issuing warnings about problems that may arise for navigation systems, from those changes. Here is their website:

The Hermanus Magnetic Observatory (HMO)

They have been at it since 1932, were originally in Cape Town, at the university, but they shifted along the coast to a magnetically quiet area when the electric trains went in. The HMO is news to me, I best admit. They do keep things quiet there, it seems.

They have said that the magnetic shifts associated with the South Atlantic Anomaly (the SAA), are damaging satellite instruments. They place the source of the shifts causing the SAA at 3,000 kms down, at the earth’s core-mantle boundary and consider they are part of the beginning of a magnetic pole reversal. In 2004 Dr Pieter Kotze of the HMO said the reversal is due anytime between tomorrow and 3,000 years from now. See here:

Something weird is going on below us
SUNDAY TIMES – Johannesburg, South Africa.

I have no problem at all with any of that, but I think one can perhaps refine the problem area, and that something of considerable import may follow.

Some NASA satellite temperature maps still show the region of intense warming in Angola, that GISS NASA now blanks out. See this one such map:

It is undoubtedly on the edge of the SAA, but it far more closely matches the change in the vertical or radial or z component of the magnetic fied, down at the core-mantle boundary. That is simply another way of observing the same overall thing, but perhaps it gives a sharper perspective.

The possibility, or perhaps better the likelihood is, that the satellite temperature instruments at least, have not been physically damaged, but are now seriously over-reading, as they pass over the vertical mag field anomaly below northern Angola. The centre and the location and shape of at least part of the northern edge of the two anomalies there, temperature and deep magnetics, match closely, on some maps at least.

Conversely, the SAA is large, and we do not have matching temperature anomaly over all of it, as far as I can see.

So, it may be that the temperature sensors in the satellites are particularly susceptible to changes in the Z component of the magnetic field below. I should here insert that I know absolutely nothing of how those sensors work, but will try find out next, on the Internet. I am merely going by what the HMO is saying – present magnetic shifts are damaging some satellite instruments.

And here comes the larger problem.

As I have a few times published on ABC Pool, there is also a very close correlation between the other three of the world’s four largest temperature and deep magnetic anomalies – those, in size order, being Siberia north of Lake Baikal, Canada west of Hudson Bay and the Antarctic Peninsula and the seas to its west. Perhaps PTMA1, 2 and 3 with Angola as PTMA4, would save dots in hyperspace and time, where “PTMA” stands for Paired Temperature and Magnetic Anomalies) But these, regrettably, just having got their own acronyms, an important step up in the class and hierarchical struggles that beset physical phenomena, may now turn out to be mere instrument errors.

In other words, Siberia and Canada and the Antarctic Peninsula may not have warmed up nearly as much as the satellite maps say they have, or in fact at all. We now should be very unsure.

And this is a damn nuisance to me, if correct, as I have just almost finished a 470-page book that assumed they were real and were controlling the climate. So I hope the instrument are reading reality, but now have serious doubts. It’s called science, I believe. Admit you may have screwed up, and don’t try hide the decline of your model.

This is as big a problem for the carbonists as for me, unless they can show that the real temperature picture matches where the 500 AQUA satellite AIRS map show the carbon dioxide is really coming from. And then, they will have an even larger problem, since the CO2 is very clearly coming from the seas and the deep sedimentary basis, and not from our cities.

Their best hope is that the AIRS readings are gibberish too.

I have emailed Pieter Kotze to see what he has to say, if he cares to, but it is now Christmas. Probably the Copenhagen Fiasco was enough for all of us for one week.

Maybe the magnetic decline will not matter a jot for centuries – until the mag poles flip and melts the icecaps. Then you can moor your dingy to the sharp bit on top of the Sydney Opera House, to catch some of the fine parrotfish living on the coral on the roofs below.

Time to look at the thermometer on the wall at home a bit more closely? And at the plants outside, to see what they think about it all?

Merry Christmas all. Including to many friends out in the Pacific Islands. Maybe the climate is just fine, this Christmas. And will be for the rest of your life. Just be nice to the parrotfish, as they are our brothers and sisters.

Peter Ravenscroft.

Closeburn, Queensland, 20 December, 2009.

PS. The carbonists leaving Copenhagen today are having their Hamlet moment, and are trying to get us all to see things their way. “To be or not to be?”, that is their gloomy question, as per that earlier prince of Copenhagen. Doom is upon us, they explain sourly, because we did not agree to trash the world economy and starve billions, to save coral atolls that all coped perfectly well with huge rises in sea level when the last glacial went away. But then, the coral was healthy, because
the parrotfish had not all been eaten. The parrotfish eat the algae that overwhelm the coral when they are all eaten. Etc. And, see Charlie Darwin’s book on coral reefs. They build up, as their volcanic bedrock bases sink down. Thousands of feet. Quite happily. First week geology.