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.