Posts Tagged ‘sanity check’

Proof of concept

Friday, December 4th, 2009

I’ve downloaded the data for station 723150-03812, Asheville Municipal Airport in North Carolina. This is the one the NCDC/NOAA use for their sample data and is, I guess, their local airport.

Throwing the full 1948-2009 data – about 26000 records - into an Excel spreadsheet, using the SUMIF and COUNTIF functions to pull out the relevant days, and sorting the results shows that the ten warmest years in Asheville are (from lowest to highest): 1974, 1980, 2001, 1999, 2002, 1991, 2007, 2009, 1998, 1990

2009 is an aberration as there are a bunch of cold days to come before the end of the year, but it’s clear that there have been equally warm years in recent decades.

This surprised me, I expected at least eight or nine out of the ten to be the warmest if the effect were clear-cut – particularly with all the fuss people have made about airport locations for weather stations, the El Nino in ’98, and the satellite data showing warming throughout the 1990s.

It remains to be seen how typical (or not) Asheville is…