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A 119-Year History of Icelandic Sea Surface Temperatures
Reference
Hanna, E., Jonsson, T., Olafsson, J. and Valdimarsson, H. 2006. Icelandic coastal sea surface temperature records constructed: Putting the pulse on air-sea-climate interactions in the Northern North Atlantic. Part I: Comparison with HadISST1 open-ocean surface temperatures and preliminary analysis of long-term patterns and anomalies of SSTs around Iceland. Journal of Climate 19: 5652-5666.

What was done
The authors developed a 119-year history of Icelandic Sea Surface Temperature (SST) based on measurements made at ten coastal stations located between latitudes 6324'N and 6632'N.

What was learned
Hanna et al.'s work revealed "long-term variations and trends that are broadly similar to Icelandic air temperature records: that is, generally cold conditions during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; strong warming in the 1920s, with peak SSTs typically being attained around 1940; and cooling thereafter until the 1970s, followed once again by warming - but not generally back up to the level of the 1930s/1940s warm period."

What it means
Although (a) climate alarmists have at different times claimed earth's mean global temperature is currently (1) higher than it has been for the past thousand years, (2) higher than it has been for the past two thousand years, (3) higher than it has been for the past twelve thousand years, as well as (4) almost as high as the highest temperature of the past million years; and although (b) global warming is claimed by climate alarmists to be (5) most strongly expressed and (6) earliest expressed in high northern latitudes, such is not the case in the vicinity of Iceland, as is also not the case in many places throughout the Arctic (see, for example, Arctic Temperature Trends - Summary in our Subject Index, as well as many of the items that have been posted there subsequent to the writing of that summary). In fact, one need only look back in time a mere sixty or so years to find modern Icelandic SSTs significantly eclipsed, which suggests there is something drastically wrong, not only with the climate-alarmist view of the future, but with the climate-alarmist view of the past and the climate-alarmist view of the present.

Reviewed 7 March 2007