Archive for January, 2011|Monthly archive page

Another year, another record

In A/C news on January 17, 2011 at 5:58 pm

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has confirmed what had been widely suspected: no year on record has been hotter worldwide than was 2010 .

Here are the rankings. No need to point out that 9 of the top 10 years start with a ‘2’:

Global Top 10
Warmest Years (Jan-Dec)
Anomaly °C Anomaly °F
2010 0.62 1.12
2005 0.62 1.12
1998 0.60 1.08
2003 0.58 1.04
2002 0.58 1.04
2009 0.56 1.01
2006 0.56 1.01
2007 0.55 0.99
2004 0.54 0.97
2001 0.52 0.94

Statistical theory predicts that if the average temperature is increasing, the frequency of extreme events will rise even faster. We saw excellent examples of that in 2010. As NOAA summarized it,

Several exceptional heat waves occurred during 2010, bringing record high temperatures and affecting tens of millions of people. Warm conditions were present across India during April. On the 18th, Delhi recorded its warmest April temperature since 1958 when temperatures soared to 43.7°C (110.7°F). Another heat wave baked northern India and Pakistan at the end of May. According to the Pakistan Meteorological Service, a maximum temperature of 53.5°C (128.3°F) was recorded in Mohenjo-Daro on May 26th. This was the warmest temperature ever recorded in Pakistan and the warmest temperaure recorded in Asia since 1942. In mid-June, a strong blocking pattern settled over western Russia, bringing an unprecendented two-month long heat wave to the area.

On July 29th, the Moscow Observatory recorded its highest-ever temperature—38.2°C (100.8°F), breaking the previous record of 37.2°C (98.9°F) set just four days earlier. Prior to 2010, the hottest temperature in Moscow was 36.8°C (98.2°F), recorded 90 years ago. That same day, Finland recorded its highest ever temperature as the mercury reached 37.2°C (99.0°F) in Joensuu, breaking the old record set in Turku in July 1914 by 1.3°C (2.3°F). The massive heat wave brought Russia its warmest summer (June–August) on record. At least 15,000 deaths in Russia were attributed to the heat.

Extreme summer warmth was felt in other areas around the world as well. According to the the Beijing Climate Center, China experienced its warmest summer on record since 1961. And the Japan Meteorological Agency reported that the country had its warmest summer since records began in 1898. On average, temperatures across Japan were 1.64°C (2.96°F) greater than the 1971–2000 average. According to Environment Canada, Canada had its third warmest summer since national records began in 1948, behind 1998 (warmest) and 2006 (second warmest). In fact, the January–August period was Canada’s warmest such period on record. In contrast, Australia experienced its coolest winter (Northern Hemisphere summer) in 13 years.

In September, following on the heels of its second coolest summer on record, a scorching heat wave in part of the western U.S. brought downtown Los Angeles, California its highest ever recorded temperature on the 27th. A temperature of 45°C (113°F) was recorded, breaking the old record of 44.4°C (112°F) set on June 26th, 1990.

Here you can see the word from the experts on why we are seeing so many extreme heat waves.


MNN: ‘Losing Our Cool’ Is One of the “Ten Must-Read Environmental Books of 2010”

In A/C news, About the book on January 3, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Mother Nature Network’s list of the “Ten Must-Read Environmental Books of 2010 to Read in 2011″ included Losing Our Cool.

See more of Losing Our Cool in the media

Losing Our Cool was also cited extensively in David Owen’s excellent article “The Efficiency Dilemma” in The New Yorker, Dec. 20-27, 2010; sorry, the full article was print-only.

See a slideshow on air-conditioning and energy efficiency that I presented to a green-building conference sponsored by Menerga-Slovenia on 25 November 2010 in Maribor, Slovenia: .ppt file (1.8 Mb). See that your ‘View’ is set to ‘Notes Pages’.)

‘Losing Our Cool’ in the News

In A/C news, About the book on January 3, 2011 at 1:32 pm

Stan Cox in the Washington Post on “D.C. without A.C.

Cox in the Los Angeles Times on how we live and work in the A/C world

New York Times: “No Air-Conditioning, and Happy

David Owen in The New Yorker on “The Efficiency Dilemma” (Dec. 20-27, 2010; sorry, subscription-only)

Chicago Sun-Times: Mark Brown tries to convince his wife to turn off the A/C

Hear an interview with Cox on NPR’s Marketplace, and read tips on keeping cool

Cox on the A/C life in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Jason Zasky talks with Cox: Failure magazine

Interview with the Belgrave Trust

Interview (mp3) with Alex Smith of Radio Ecoshock

More on keeping cool from Yes! magazine

The downside of A/C on Here and Now

Kevin Canfield on Losing Our Cool in the Los Angeles Times

Watch the KSN-TV report, also seen on the Weather Channel and NBC affiliates across the U.S.  

Hear “Life without Air-Conditioning” on The Takeaway

An interview with Ryan Brown of Salon.com

Tom Condon on Losing Our Cool in the Hartford Courant

With National Geographic News Watch

Hear “Chilling Facts About Air Conditioners“, a one-hour interview and call-in with Stan Cox on the NPR program On Point

Rob Sharp in The Independent (UK): Cold Comfort

Cox answers adversaries via CounterPunch

Does this A/C make me look fat?

The Wichita Eagle on Losing Our Cool

Losing Our Cool interview: video on MSNBC

A review by the Dallas Morning News

An article on Losing Our Cool in the Boston Globe.

Q&A on A/C in the business world, in the New York Post

KWCH-TV interview

A Minneapolis Star-Tribune interview

Glenn Beck doesn’t want to hear about turning off the A/C

Nevada shaped by fans of A/C: the Las Vegas Sun

TIME on the history of air-conditioning

An interview with the National Post‘s Joe O’Connor

Macleans: How Air-Conditioning Changed the World

An A/C  Q&A with Discovery’s Planet Green

How to stay cool without A/C even in America’s hot zones

A CBC Radio interview

Stan Cox in the Hartford Courant: Air-Conditioning is Sapping Our Society

Paul Cox: “Birth of the Air Conditioner

Read Chapter 1 of Losing Our Cool:

rightsideChapter 1 — reprinted in pdf format by ColdType

Read Chapter 1 here

Publisher’s Weekly reviews Losing Our Cool.

A review in the Cleveland Plain Dealer

A Globe and Mail interview on staying cool in Canada

An essay written by Stan Cox for Powell’s Books: “In Making Our Own Weather, Have We Remade Ourselves?”.

A May 19 story in the Salina Journal.