Upside Down Data

14 Aug 2020

A few years ago we had an example of a Finnish lake sediment database used upside down in order to demonstrate the idea of global warming. The so called hockey stick used another trick with temperature data. Now, it seems, we have another example - see ... its a short piece but has lots of comments. Only a few are worth reading. It refers to an Antarctic temperature reconstruction that demonstrably differs from previous offerings - sticking out, as they say, like a sore thumb. Bound to arouse investigation. And it did. It seems the authors of the study have turned a borehole database upside down in order to point at their desired conclusion. There were also a couple of other dubious methods in play. Does anyone get surprised by this sort of thing nowadays?

The big alarmist story this week is a paper that claims the Florida current is weaker than it has been over the last 100 years. By itself this is of no great interest to anyone, apart from the fact the Florida current is said to feed the Gulf Stream. The intention of the new paper is to cause alarm about a slowing down of the Gulf Stream - of which there is no evidence in spite of several studies over the last couple of decades. It's a bit of a wheeze I suppose as the shutting down of the Gulf Stream featured in Al Gores bit of science fiction. The Gulf Stream scary stories have been a bit thin on the ground of late so I suppose the authors thought it was about time it was revived. See for example ... basically, a model is used to verify another model. The full article is at

You might also like to have a look at ... which brings it all down to earth like a punctured balloon. Although the popular concept is that the Gulf Stream is responsible for bringing a mild climate to NW Europe, especially when it comes down to winters, unlike the equivalent latitudes on the opposite side of the Atlantic, the truth is quite different. Atmospheric heat is a bigger factor. The heat transported by the ocean current is but a fragment of that transferred to the North Pole by the atmosphere. Some of that heat is caused by a transfer from the ocean to the air, excess heat, which in turn actually serves to diminish what the Gulf Stream moves from the tropics to NW Europe. A lot of winter rain also has an origin in the sub tropics too, which provides us with that drizzle of rain that makes the countryside so green. The amount of heat transferred by the atmosphere is well known to meteorology - and weather forecasting. It is many times greater in magnitude than any action the Gulf Stream is able to perform.