Fun Data / Temperature Site

Over on WUWT, there was a comment:

by Harold Pierce Jr that pointed to a rather fun little site:

ATTN: ALL

For quick and easy access for weather data from anywhere go to:

http://www.wolframalpha.com

On the hompage, enter info request in the input box . For example, “weather alice springs”. Click on red box with equal sign. The computer them retrieves and displays weather data for the present date from about 1940 if it can find it.

In the section “Weather History” click on drop down menu for addditional selections for display of weather info. Plots of various weather metrics are displayed and other info such as record highs and lows. There is also a short term weather forecast available.

If you select “All”, a plot of the annual mean temperature is diplayed with the OLS trend. For Alice Springs this is really low like almost zero. Note data is from airport.

If no info can be found, a definition about weather and climate is displayed.

Thinking this might be a bit of fun, I put in “Darwin Temperature”. They proceeded to figure out I likely did not mean the other Darwins… “Assuming Darwin (Australia) | Use Darwin (Minnesota, USA) or Darwin (California, USA) instead” …

and made a nice little graph. Unexpectedly, even I was surprised at how flat it was. I’ve grown so used to the GISS graphs being all out of whack, I guess the idea that an online source would be correct kind of surprised me:

Darwin Australis Temperature WolframAlfpa

Darwin Australis Temperature WolframAlfpa

I’m resisting the temptation to start typing in all sorts of cities world wide to see what it shows… and comparing them to my copy of GHCN…

UPDATE!

Though not very successfully… Here’s the graph for Sacramento, California:

Sacramento, Calif WolframAlpha

Sacramento, Calif WolframAlpha

I can tell this is going to be an issue for me for a few days…. Here’s an interesting comparison of some Arizona sites. First up is Phoenix that has grown like a weed, then Tucson that’s grown, but not nearly so much, and where the airport has not got quite so many acres of asphalt / tarmac in all directions…

Phoenix Arizona Temp WolframAlpha

Phoenix Arizona Temp WolframAlpha

Tucson Arizona Temps WolframAlfpa

Tucson Arizona Temps WolframAlfpa

You can drive from Phoenix to Tucson in a very few hours ( I have, recently) and the terrain does not change much (at all?). These two ought to be nearly a ‘matched set’, especially on things like distance to ocean and influence of Canadian Air… Yet what we see is clear evidence that Phoenix has a very bad Heat Island.

Moving “up slope” from Phoenix on a one day drive, you can rise through Prescott to the mountain tops at Flagstaff:

Prescott Arizona Temp Wolfram Alpha

Prescott Arizona Temp Wolfram Alpha

Flagstaff Arizona Temps WolframAlpha

Flagstaff Arizona Temps WolframAlpha

While these time periods are too short to cover the known weather cycle period lengths, they clearly show that the trend is not at all like Phoenix. There is a bump up during the warm phase of the PDO, then a drop back down during the cold phase. There are some differences at the end of the cycle in timing that are interesting (that could be equipment changes? Or just differences with altitude? Or clouds or??? )

“Global Warming” comes from the selection of places like Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport as the thermometer to use to represent this region, then averaging and blending it into all the surrounding areas. There is no general warming away from the major urban centers and airports. It is the “homogenizing” and “averaging” process that leads to a splice of sites like these that hides these variations and the story they have to tell which is, IMHO, the basic core fault in “Global Warming science” as practiced today.

UPDATE 2 – Adding graphs that some folks have talked about in comments

Two From Idaho:

Boise Idaho Temp WolframAlpha

Boise Idaho Temp WolframAlpha

Nampa Idaho Temp WolframAlpha

Nampa Idaho Temp WolframAlpha

One from Benson Air Field near Oxford England:

Benson RAF (Oxford) Endland Temp W-A

Benson RAF (Oxford) Endland Temp W-A

Some Islands In The Sun:

Ascension Island Temp W-A

Ascension Island Temp W-A

Easter Island Temp W-A

Easter Island Temp W-A

Galapagos Islands Temp W-A

Galapagos Islands Temp W-A

Bikini Atol actually comes up as Kawajalein (Buchholz AAB, 254 miles SE of Bikini, but it probably doesn’t matter all that much, other than that it is another airport). You need to keep an eye on what it interprets a place to be sometimes:

Bikini Atol - Kwajalein Temp W-A

Bikini Atol - Kwajalein Temp W-A

One I rather like (as I think it shows the PDO state switch both ways):

Pitcairn Island Temp WolframAlpha

Pitcairn Island Temp WolframAlpha

Midway Henderson Field Temp W-A

Midway Henderson Field Temp W-A

For comparison to Midway, here is the International Airport at Lihui Kauai. I think you can see the fairly clear “step function” as the Jet Age began and it turned from a 1940’s grass field and 1960s “Puff The Magic Dragon” sleepy getaway into a major tourist destination, then stabilized after that massive airport growth into the 1980s. It would be interesting to know what was done at Midway in the 1990s.

Kauai Lihui Airport Temp W-A

Kauai Lihui Airport Temp W-A

A Bit More Australia, as it’s come up in comments

Alice Springs Temps W-A

Alice Springs Temps W-A

Perth Australia Temp W-A

Perth Australia Temp W-A

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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15 Responses to Fun Data / Temperature Site

  1. PaulID says:

    If you think that is interesting try typing in Boise ID and Nampa ID 2 cities less than 20 miles apart and see what the airport temp is.

  2. @E.M.Smith: You are getting near to the details again .-)

    It is the “homogenizing” and “averaging” process that leads to a splice of sites like these that hides these variations and the story they have to tell which is, IMHO, the basic core fault in “Global Warming science” as practiced today.

    What if you consider only minimum temperatures. It will avoid any “averaging” between maxima and minima, which it is almost a self deceiving practice. Perhaps you will find that minimum temperatures have decreased….

  3. oldtimer says:

    Thank you for that excellent link – I have alerted my grand children to its potential.

    Out of curiosity I put in Oxford England temperature. Lo and behold I got results for Benson a few miles away. As chance would have it, or perhaps not by chance, Benson is the site of a RAF air field. It was the base for air reconnaissance in WW2.

  4. George says:

    I wish I could find temperature records for Ascension Island. That would be pretty much indicative of “global climate” in my opinion as it is in the middle of an ocean and has no UHI.

    Midway Island might do as well in the Pacific.

  5. Jason Calley says:

    @ George
    Wolframalpha does in fact have the info for Ascension island — and it is as flat as can be. Discounting what appear to be splice artifacts, same for Easter Island, the Galapagos Islands, Bikini Atoll and several others. Midway shows a rise, but I think that Midway is another of those cases where the thermometer is sitting in the middle of the airport. South Georgia shows some warming. Saint Helena shows cooling.

    What I do NOT see is any evidence for widespread (much less catastrophic) change.

  6. PhilJourdan says:

    Hmmm….maybe I will check out Phoenix next week personally. ;)

  7. E.M.Smith says:

    I’ve added some of the images you’all have been discussing, so it’s a bit easier to see what you’re saying…

    Easter Island is an interesting one. Don’t know if that’s an ocean state switch (if it’s right on the edge between warm and cool ocean patches that swap with some switch like the PDO or ENSO or…) or if it was an equipment change. In either case, IMHO, it’s a great example of why the ‘average it all together’ approach is just wrong. It would average that “rise” in with the other “flat” and find “global warming” instead of finding “What happened at Easter Island?”

    I’ve adeed Pitcairn Island. I think it shows the PDO switch to hot at the very start then back to cold at the recent past. Again, very interesting information lost in the “homogenize” processing. Just like the “Two Idahos” shows the greater UHI of Boise and why it ought not to be interpreted as “Global Warming”…

    @Jason Calley: When I put in “Saint Helena” it gives me “Wide Wake Field” on Ascension Island 804 Mi WNW… did you have a magic cookie to get the actual Saint Helena or did it swap under you without notice?

  8. dearieme says:

    I thought Azores would give me something useful for the North Atlantic, but got nothing. The I tried Madeira. Here my problem is that it seems to say that the weather station is at Funchal Airport and that it is “3 mi NW from center of Madeira Island”. It can’t be both: Funchal is on the south coast of the island.

  9. What a great site!

    Even for a thermometer site close to the metropolitan area, but admittedly away from the tarmac, we see a 60 yr cooling trend.
    YMML Melbourne Airport
    actually 1 Km from airport.
    1950 -2010
    Trend: -(minus) 6.1 * 10^-4 degC /yr

    However, a strange result occurs if I nominate Castlemaine, a country city 90Km north of Melbourne, I get a completely different graph:
    1975 – 2010
    Greater variations and
    Trend -0.068 degC/yr (+-0.067). (Still cooling, more-so, but with less statistical accuracy).
    The site is still referred to as YMML (Melbourne A/P), 86Km from Castlemaine.

    The main conclusion is that the real trends in this area are NEGATIVE, but there are factors needing clarification before claiming scientific proof.
    Entering ‘temperature global average’ results in the standard hockey stick graph, so no programmed computation there.

    A quick look around the country shows a majority of cooling trends, the heating ones usually airports, especially Brisbane and Sydney.

    It certainly is a ‘gem’ of a site.

  10. Baa Humbug says:

    Small islands are totally dominated by ocean climate, so I don’t think they will be good indicators of the effects of CO2 or AGW.

    Some long lived desert areas would be more indicative of climate sensitivity to CO2.

    I’m guessing desert areas show very little trend, and any bumps or troughs in the trends can be equated to (what little) precipitation these places get.

  11. @ Baa Humbug:
    You may be making a general statement, but I hope you are not referring to Australia as a small island. If so I invite you to check its area in comparison to North America, for example.
    Alice Springs is roughly at the centre of Australia and is in the middle of a huge desert. It, as EM mentioned, has a basically zero trend. The capital cities are mostly around the perimeter and the West coast seems to be trending cooler more so than the East coast.
    On the other hand, if there actually is a warming trend (global average, ie., a real and true global average), of any consequence, yet some places could warm while others cool or remain steady (I think you are saying), the IPCC-claimed serious consequences scaring the public would need to be specifically identified in relation to location.
    Only if such unequal changes occur and they are responsible for instability in the climate in general, might they be as bad as suggested.
    On the whole, I prefer to believe that if a significant average warming is taking place, (in the long term, because it certainly is not in the short term), then the increased temperature would occur fairly generally. Not by the same amounts necessarily, but a cooling in many area raises genuine questions. The current cooling is certainly widespread and sustained enough to surely conflict with the CO2/temperature relationship “scientifically” arrived at by the IPCC.
    I believe what EM says is fair comment – its not so much surface temperatures that tell the story, but heat content of the planet, that’s a bit difficult to quantify.
    What are your thoughts on the opposite theory that the trend is actually a cooling one, on long term basis, even an Ice Age threat?
    Regards, Ken.

  12. Jason Calley says:

    @ E.M. “When I put in “Saint Helena” it gives me “Wide Wake Field” on Ascension Island 804 Mi WNW… did you have a magic cookie to get the actual Saint Helena or did it swap under you without notice?”

    Oooooh! Good catch, you are absolutely right; it did swap. Remind me not to cheat at poker with you… :)

    @ Baa Humbug “Small islands are totally dominated by ocean climate, so I don’t think they will be good indicators of the effects of CO2 or AGW.”

    You make an interesting point. I wonder what percentage of the Earth’s surface is within, say, 50 miles of an ocean? Better yet, let’s consider, what percentage of the Earth’s surface is NOT within 50 miles of an ocean. Can we guess maybe 15%? So hypothetically, maybe 15% of the Earth is not dominated by ocean climate. If the oceans are not a good place to look for AGW, doesn’t that pretty much take the “global” out of AGW? If the mechanics of water evaporation, cloud formation, convection and heat transfer make the oceans poorly responsive to CO2 induced warming that would seem to me to rule out AGW, at least from CO2.

  13. George says:

    What was done on Midway during that time:

    September 30, 1993 –
    Naval Air Facility Midway is “operationally closed” and the Navy initiates plans for environmental cleanup of the Island.

    October 31, 1996 –
    President Clinton signs Executive Order 13022 transferring jurisdiction of Midway Island from the U.S. Navy to the Department of the Interior. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages Midway Island National Wildlife Refuge to maintain and restore its natural biological diversity, provide conservation and management of the wildlife and habitats within refuge boundaries, provide opportunities for scientific research and environmental education, maintain the Island’s historical significance, and provide compatible wildlife-oriented activities to the visiting public.

    1996 –
    Midway Phoenix Corporation enters a Cooperative Agreement with the Fish and Wildlife Service to open Midway Island to for public visitation.

    August 1996
    Midway opened for public visitation.

    April 3, 1997 –
    Secretary of the Navy, John Dalton, presents the “key to Midway” (in the shape of a Laysan Albatross) to Interior Assistant Secretary Bonnie Cohen. In his speech, Secretary Dalton celebrated “trading guns for goonies” on Midway Island.

    June 30, 1997 –
    The last U.S. Navy personnel stationed on Midway Island depart.

    Maybe they had a bunch of equipment parked right next to the wx station or something.

  14. E.M.Smith says:

    They made it presentable to visitors… I’ll bet that involved fresh tarmac and runway resurfacing. Nice New Black tarmac… So a load of construction gear, flights getting it and people in and out, fresh hot tarmac. Then it all leaves and the runway gets a bit of that dirty dusty grey look….

    But it’s not “global warming”…

  15. George says:

    Considering what I saw on Anthony’s site, it wouldn’t surprise me if they set up one of those construction trailers next to the wx station with the air conditioner blowing right on it.

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