Saturday, September 5, 2009

The Heats On in Okemah-again

The incompetence of the weather service, a government agency which may by itself explain the incompetence, continues as I compare the temperature records of towns next-door to each other. One should think that two towns 30 miles apart on the relatively flat Oklahoma Prairie should have similar temperature series. But they don't. Over and over again on this blog, I have shown how bad the temperature records are by showing the lunacies seen in the thermometer record. Two nearby towns should, by all reckoning have no bias and no large temperature differences but, again, over and over I have shown that this is not the case.

Tonight it is again theturn of Okemah and Okmulgee, Oklahoma. I have reported on these stations earlier but I found some new issues in the data. The last time I looked at it I didn't examine the drastic rise in temperature seen in the 1990s. The first picture is of the temperature difference smoothed by a 180 day running average. This allows one to see if the winter temperatures are more divergent than the summer. But in this case, it seems that starting in the mid-1980s Okemah, Oklahoma warmed tremendously compared with Okmulgee. Indeed, the 180 day running average. That warming is amazing. In the late 1990s Okemah became 6 degrees hotter than Okmulgee.

I wanted to examine in detail the bias for a couple of years. I chose 1994 and that is the plot below. At that time Okemah was 3.9 deg F hotter than Okmulgee.

So, what is going on in Okemah that isn't going on in Okmulgee? Well,linking up to Anthony Watts site and going to their gallery I found that Okemah's thermometer is surrounded by buildings, running school buses, and next to cement. That is the picture below.

But Okmulgee's thermometer doesn't seem to have much in the way of heat sources nearby. There is a building 75 meters away but it is much further away than are the buildings in Okemah. And that may be why Okemah heats and Okmulgee doesn't.

This case illustrates that just becausee a thermometer is in a rural area it isn't automatically a good station. Look at this data and realize that it goes into the calculation for global warming. Given the existence of a homogeneity filter, I bet that the editing tilts Okmulgee to be hotter than it is (search this blog for homogeneity).

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