Stop the Presses! NASA Error Equals One-Thousandth of a Degree

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The conservative press has had a field day with the revelation that NASA made a calculation error in its annual temperature figures. Multiple columnists have loudly declared that this proves that global warming is a hoax.

The Political Animal blog on the CBS News website responds briefly and decisively….


Remember the big foofaraw a few days ago when a global warming skeptic finally found a bug in some U.S. temperature calculations? 1998 was no longer the hottest year on record! The United States is cooler than it was in 1934! All this was over a small Y2K correction that lowered a few years of data for the U.S. by about a tenth of a degree.

And what about the correction for global warming? Well, it’s in the chart above.Can’t see it? That’s not surprising. James Hansen of NASA, who applied the corrections to both the U.S. and global data, writes:

The effect on global temperature (Figure 2) was of order one-thousandth of a degree, so the corrected and uncorrected curves are indistinguishable. (More here.)

Bottom line: there’s no there there. Global warming is still real, still climbing, and still not a hoax. Tell your friends.