Australian Winter Turns Apocalyptic: Global Warming Blamed

Is my headline an exaggeration of reality? 

If you ask a denier site such as Watts Up With That, no doubt they would scoff, and say it's the usual natural variability.

But deniers not only ignore the bad news about global warming obvious to most people on the ground, in places like Sydney and SoCal, they cynically mislead shamefully often.

For instance, in this headline they misquote Bill Patzert of the Jet Propulsion Lab to imply that he questions the reality of global warming, though Patzert has made amply clear to myself and countless other reporters that global warming is a reality of the utmost seriousness, and the author of the post no doubt knows that.

It's sunspots, Watts Up says. Has nothing to do with the atmosphere.

Well, here's a chance to take a look and judge for yourself.

Here's the news from Sydney today, via the BBC:

Australia has experienced its warmest August on record amid soaring winter temperatures.

Climatologists have blamed both the effects of climate change and natural variability.

Australia's Bureau of Meteorology says that August was a "most extraordinary month" with mean temperatures 2.47C above the long-term average.

August in Australia culminated in a record-breaking heat-wave across much of the continent.

In the Queensland town of Bedourie the temperature reached 38.5C. [101F]

Elsewhere, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia have had their warmest winters on record.

That's right: winter.

101.3 doesn't sound so bad…for August. But what if it were February? 

Here's a graph that goes with the story, showing a slight temp trend for Oz winters:


But the irony in the story is found in the caption under the photo at the top of the page: 

Rivers are dry in some areas, and people have been enjoying unusually hot days.


Probably that was the work of some photo editor back in London, who for some reason felt compelled to obscure the nightmarish scene that was Sydney today.

Here's what Sydney really looked like, according to resident Tomhide via Flickr.



Published by Kit Stolz

I'm a freelance reporter and writer based in Ventura County.

3 thoughts on “Australian Winter Turns Apocalyptic: Global Warming Blamed

  1. I don’t know what point, if any, Anthony Watts is trying to make about the sunspot cycle vs. global warming…those record hot temperatures in Australia are being experienced at a time when the sun is putting out pretty close to its minimum energy because we are at the minimum in the sunspot cycle: see
    Two of the warmest years on record, 2005 and 2007 (see ), occurred as the sun’s energy output as indicated by sunspots would have been decreasing. As we now begin to progress from the sunspot minimum to the sunspot maximum (now predicted for 2013), the naturally increasing solar energy will undoubtedly combine with the anthropogenic global warming signal to produce even HIGHER temperature records.



  2. Aha, but then it’s down to the climate impact of the increased cosmic ray flux that occurs at solar minimum.

    Arguing with someone like Watts about this stuff is precisely like arguing with an astrologer.


  3. Hello

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