George Costanza could be right.
As most readers know by now, the problematic GISTEMP global temperature anomaly plot for October is heavily weighted by temperatures from weather stations in Russia.
GISTEMP 11-12-08 - Click for larger image
Like in the USA, weather stations tend to be distributed according to population density, with the more populated western portion of Russia having more weather stations than the less populated eastern areas such as Siberia. To illustrate this, here is a plot of Russian Weather Station locations from the University of Melbourne:
Click picture for larger image, source image is here
Interestingly, the greatest magnitude of the GISTEMP anomaly plot for October is in these mostly unpopulated areas where the weather station density is the lowest. While I was pondering this curiosity, one of the WUWT readers, Corky Boyd, did a little research and passed this along in email:
…Posters at Watts Up have commented on the ongoing consistently high anomalous temperatures from Russia. I have noticed this too. In light of the erroneously posted data for October, I took a look at the monthly NCDC climate reports back to January 2007. By my eyeball estimate the results from Russia are almost all on the high side. . Some I classified as very highs are massively high. Of the 21 months reported, only 2 appeared to be below average.
Category 2007 2008 (9 months)
Very high 6 4
High 3 1
Average 2 3
Low 0 1
Very Low 1 0
Is there a way to validate or invalidate GISS data by comparing it to RISS? Does it strike you as odd that the verifiably erroneous data has shown up in the same area that was suspect in the first place? Could there be a pattern?
Corky also sent along a series of images depicting global near surface and ocean temperature anomalies from NOAA. Here is the most recent one from September 2008:
Read the rest here.
When comparing global temperatures over time, and take in to the calculation weather stations globally you will find that global temperatures has sunk over the past few years and that we now have the global temperatures that we had on the turn of the last century, before mass industrialition.
I don't know about you, but I will now go out and start up my big SUV and let it run on idle for a couple of hours.
Nah- kidding. I don't own a SUV, but I will pace up my breathing. That will teach them a lesson!