2023 Was Not the “Hottest Year on Record” for Over 70% of the World’s Population, Data Show


Despite the scaremongering of climate catastrophists using cherry picked data to propagate a narrative of global warming alarmism, official data continues to show no significant rises in global temperature.

By Chris Morrison via The Daily Sceptic

Further doubt has been cast on the widely-broadcast alarmist temperature claim that last year was the hottest since records began. A deep dive into figures published by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reveals that the ‘hottest ever’ claims did not apply to large areas of the world including Asia, Europe, North America, Oceania, East N. Pacific, Hawaiian region, Arctic and Antarctic. Investigative science writer Larry Hamlin notes in the science blog Watts Up With That? that at least 58% of the Earth’s land surface where 73% of the world’s population lives did not experience the hyped ‘highest ever recorded’ average temperature anomaly.

Hamlin charges that NOAA’s characterisation that the 2023 global average temperature anomaly was the “highest ever recorded” misrepresents the global reality of widely varying average temperatures anomalies across many disparate global climate regions. Furthermore, he notes, alarmists exaggerate global anomaly outcomes by claiming they represent a “global climate emergency” where “temperatures during 2023 likely exceed those of any period in the last 100,000 years”. All this “ridiculous” climate alarmist propaganda is based on an increased anomaly difference of 0.15°C from the year 2016.

Hamlin states that 2016 was a very strong El Niño year, as was 2023. In fact if one looks at the accurate satellite record, it can be observed that heat increases over the last 25 years are mainly confined around strong El Niño years, suggesting natural influence rather than human-produced carbon dioxide is responsible for any observed warming. In the absence of El Niño events, the climate record over the last two decades has been notable for long pauses in temperature. In addition, the 2023 temperature record may have been affected by the January 2022 Hunga-Tonga submarine eruption that suddenly boosted water vapour, a powerful if short-lived ‘greenhouse’ gas, by 13% in the upper atmosphere. There is no doubt that last year was warmer than usual, but varied temperature movements are tiny on any long-term basis, obviously affected by natural influences, and well within any reasonable margin of error. In the next 12-24 months, they could just as easily come tumbling down.

The above table shows the wide differences in 2023 temperature anomalies across the planet. Warming has been almost non-existent in Antarctica, but land areas with ever-expanding urban areas often produce the highest anomalies. The global anomaly rise of 1.18°C corresponds to a temperature of 15.08°C, and is relative to a NOAA 1901-2000 baseline average of 13.9°C. Cue for catastrophist’s alarm is the three 20ths of a degree centigrade increase from the previous higher figure in 2016, an amount well within any margin of error, and as we shall see, unmeasurable with any convincing accuracy.

Eagle-eyed readers will have spotted that Hamlin counts North America as having ‘No’ record high given its miniscule claimed 0.02°C rise from the El Niño year of 2016. He has a point – such a claimed rise is unmeasurable, and when the ‘climate collapse’ stakes are high it can be regarded as scientifically unsound. There is simply too much doubt surrounding the collection of surface temperature data by a number of weather operations including NOAA and the U.K. Met Office. Dr. Roy Spencer from the University of Alabama in Huntsville, one of the scientists behind the accurate UAH satellite temperature record, recently published a paper that found the urban heat effect was responsible for 57% of the warming in the U.S. since 1895 averaged over all suburban and urban stations. This might not surprise given that in the U.K., the Met Office claimed a record high temperature of 40.3°C on July 19th 2022 from a measuring device halfway down a military runway. At around the time of the 60-second spike, the runway was in use by three Typhoon fighter jets. The Met Office runs a global temperature dataset called HadCRUT, and over the last decade it has added 30% extra warming to the recent record on a retrospective basis.

Hamlin also casts further reasonable doubt on the U.S. figure by publishing the graph below taken from U.S. Climate Reference Network (USCRN) database.

The rarely-referenced USCRN was set up by NOAA in 2005 using around 114 carefully sited temperature measurement stations across the contiguous U.S. in areas well away from urban development. As can be noted, very little warming can be seen over nearly two decades. Hamlin states that there is no increasing average temperature anomaly trend in the U.S. with the 2023 outcome exceeded by numerous years including 2016.

As the Daily Sceptic has noted in the past, accurate temperature measurement barely got stated before 1900, and widespread media claims that 125,000-year records are being broken are little more than wishful thinking by those seeking to collectivise society using the Net Zero weapon. General past trends in temperature can be discerned using proxy evidence, and this all points to much higher warming in recent times. Notably, as the planet emerged from an ice age, it is the view of many scientists that temperatures were between 3-5°C higher across many parts of the world between 8,000-5,000 years ago. It is very likely that the current ‘boiling’ temperatures are very similar to those found in both the Medieval and Roman warming periods.