Monday, June 11, 2012


date: Mon Oct 20 14:26:04 2008
from: Phil Jones <>
subject: Re: global temperatures
to: Stefan Rahmstorf <>

I've had no publication. Attached is my latest one on Chinese urbanization trends.
Also there is this one from Nature earlier in the year.
I've been mentioning some issues with surface temperatures in talks I've
given recently, but these have been to students here at UEA or meetings in
Spain and Switzerland.
The Thompson et al paper adjustments will be included in the next update
paper - due for submission in the spring next year. There is an issue mentioned
in the final few sentences in this paper - relating to measurements now. The
number of drifter-measured (and buoy) SST measurements now total about
85% of values (with ships making up the rest). In the late-1980s almost all
SST measurements came from ships. The 1961-90 base period is based on
ships. It seems as though the drifters are measuring slightly cooler than the ships.
We're working on this, but if correct, an adjustment would make recent years
We're also getting in SST data for the Arctic (in summer) for regions where
we don't have 1961-90 base period values. So we can't use these data. We're
not sure how to cope with these data. Again if we put the values in we'd
make the Arctic warmer.
Your person may not be referring to these issues, but these are the only things
I can think off.
If I'm asked about recent trends, I just say that much of the variability from year to
year is due to ENSO. As you know, ENSO variability is an order of magnitude warmer
on the interannual timescale than the greenhouse warming, so dominates on timescales
less than 5 years.
We will get another warm year when we get another big El Nino.
It seems as though this La Nina keeps reasserting itself. Nino measures are
probably affected by these drifter/ship issues. We're trying to work out
spatial and seasonal patterns of the differences.
I'm off in a few minutes to get a plane to Iceland for a meeting. I'll be back
next week.
At 13:55 20/10/2008, you wrote:

Dear Phil,
we have a German "skeptics-leaning" journalist here who keeps claiming in the media
every few weeks that even IPCC-people admit that temperatures have not been rising over
the past 10 years. When pressed he said he is referring to you. Is there any publication
of yours that he is misrepresenting, or do you have an idea what specifically he is
referring to? It would be helpful in debunking this person if I knew exactly what his
source is; I am sure he is giving this his own well-known spin that has little to do
with what you intended to say.
Cheers, Stefan
Stefan Rahmstorf

Prof. Phil Jones
Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 (0) 1603 592090
School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 (0) 1603 507784
University of East Anglia
Norwich Email

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