This weekend was full of “Making” things around the ranch. Because it was so cool in the mornings, high 40’s, it got me to doing some serious noodling on this whole climate issue.
Another factor was sweating…a lot! When the morning starts off with coffee and it’s 56 in the shop, that’s what I’d call perfect weather for serious work. There’s a band of perfect working weather, and near as I can figure, it’s semi-coded into your DNA.
Since both Elaine and I are 99% northern European down at the cellular level, this got me to studying temperatures in Europe. Dandy interactive map of Demark may be found here. But a quick Googling will find just about any country.
Since I’m 50% Danish extraction, I figure my ideal all time high temperature could be inferred by looking at July and August temps from back in the grandparent’s homeland. My grandmother has come over on the last westbound sailing of the Lusitania, by the way, and no, Ellis Island Immigration didn’t involve “sanctuaries.”
Back to the weather and climate: All-time July high for Odense is 34C which translates to 93F. Ditto for August.
But the coldest low on record for July was a couple of degrees over freezing. And the record cold for August was freezing.
Odense, we observer in this data, is not a particular hot spot. There are other places around Denmark even cooler. And definitely, the time of year to visit would be July or August.
Crossover Day Explained
There are some standards in meteorology when comes to climate although it’s a slippery slope to get anyone to define where the boundary is between weather variability, which shows up in the day-to-day numbers, and climate change which has been in play in ultra-slow motion since the ice sheets retreated from the last Ice Age.
So, rather than get into a no-win argument with myself about how long I would be able to work outdoors going into summer before it becomes shear misery, of we go to the www.wunderground.com website.
Once there, notice there are a number of tabs across the top: “Today,” “Hourly,” “10-Day,” and so forth.
Click on the one that says “History.”
Scroll down until you see today’s date. Just under that is another set of tabs: “Daily,” “Weekly,” and “Monthly.” The next tab is the one you want. The one labeled “Custom.”
There are two numbers we’re looking for: One is Degree Heating Days (Base 65) and the other is Degree Cooling Days (Base 65) right under it.
When you put in January 1, 2018 as the data start range and April 30, 2018 for the end date, you will see your local Heating and Cooling days.
In the case of Palestine, Texas, as of this morning, we have had 1,300 heating degree days for the year to date while only 125 cooling degree days. In other words, we have had a LOT more heating in East Texas than cooling this year…assuming 65-degrees is our baseline.
Next, by changing the dates to 2017, and rerunning the search, we can get a sense of how much warmer or cooler this year has been, at least so far.
2017 had 711 heating degree days and 307 cooling degree days.
2016 offered 1019 for the heating number and 169 for the cooling number.
Now we put on the thinking cap: What can we look for in the data that might be useful as a metric. I favor simple math problems (because I write early in the morning before coffee has kicked in) and because simply data manipulations are a kind of personal Occam for me.
We realize that despite having almost twice as much heating going on for the year-to-date, that we must be into the cooling degree days pretty quick. When that happens, says our twisted supposition, we ought to be able to find THAT ONE DAY in early summer when Cooling Days crosses over and becomes larger than Heating Das.
After only a few lookups, using a variant of “half the distance sorting,” we are pleased to discover that Climate Crossover Day in 2017 occurred on June 15-16.
On June 15th there was still more heating, but on June 16th, there was more cooling.
And that’s when “Crossover” occurred. 728 heating degree days and 749 cooling days.
June 16th. We note the date.
Then we run the look-up for other years to see when cross-over dates appear:
- 2017: June 16.
- 2016: July 9,
- 2015: July 25,
- 2014: September 8,
- 2013: August 3,
- 2012: June 27,
- 2011: June 21,
- 2010: August 2.
I could go on all day looking up the data. but you get the idea.
I can not vouch for the underlying data. No, I trust Weather Ground. It’s the adjustments to NOAA data by your government that I’m skeptical of. The “adjusting” of back-years data by so-called “climate scientists” to make the 1930’s and 1940’s look cooler than they were – hence driving hysteria about “climate change” is well-documented.
But it’s worth coming up with your own cockamamie climate measuring system – like this tracking of local heating/cooling degree-days outlined here – because it’s all about independent deep thought.
You know, like the SETI Project did with distributed computing? Seems to me there is a vast opportunity for a similar distributed research possibility for some of the biggest problems ahead.
Why, I can name dozens of ’em, How about taxation of machines, taxation of robotics, and taxation of A.I., just for openers.
Or – even bigger and more general – how do we review the Western Economic system is such a way that it actually makes sense in a now growth and even declining consumption mode.
This is a biggie: You know that when growth ends – whether real increases in consumption, or artificial stimulus like tax cuts and so on – that the whole economy implodes?
America was, and in many ways still is, the production leader in all kinds of industries – as long as the growth and profit incentives are intact.
Failing these, however, the future dims a great deal. Just as there is a “tipping point” (heating versus cooling days, for example) in climate every year, so too, there may be other tipping points for the whole human race. Ones we may not notice, heads-down in phones as most are…
Putting new window frames on the house this weekend it was the kind of thing to keep the mind busy while working in the shop.
It’s not hard to remember “41-7/8th’s plus two little marks” measuring up cuts on the chop saw. But when you’re sweating, great climate debates come to mind and trying to find a simple way to “solve for Reality.”
Hmmmwrite when you get rich,