Recent headlines in the local papers claim the weather is further evidence of global warming. They point to above average temperatures in December and January as manefestations of this. Just what does the short term weather demonstrate?
All of the charts below are from http://weather.yahoo.com and can be enlarged by clicking on them.
First, the monthly average temperatures (degrees Fahrenheit) for this area. January high/low is 30/16; February high/low is 34/18. Not exactly warm.
The first two weeks of January 2007 were warmer than average with the highest high being 52 on January 1. The lowest low was 25 on January 10. We were sweltering.
The last half of January was closer to normal with the highest high of 38 on January 27 and the lowest low of 0 on January 25.
February has been a different story with temperatures well below both the average high and average low. The highest high was 25 on February 1 and 17; the lowest low was -6 on February 5 (the same day I returned from a Florida trip... brrrrrrrr). The average overall temperature during this period was lower than the average low.
Temperatures are forecasted to return to near normal for the remainder of February.
So, what does all of this prove regarding global warming? From what I can observe, absolutely nothing. But I have been told by reliable sources (commenters at online discussions) that this variability is exactly what you would expect with global warming.
The only problem with that is such variability happens all of the time. Just look back at the record highs and lows for your area and you will see that there is no pattern at all. Weather variability is pretty much random.
The next time you read a headline about warm temperatures being related to global warming, turn the page... the newspaper is wasting your time.
And this has absolutly nothing to do with Global Warming, but you might enjoy it.