June 03, 2007


This figure shows the official monthly average temperature where we live, blue line on top, and the average monthly temperature 1961 to 1990. We didn't have much of a winter this year-- normal September temperatures lasted into December. Spring was a month early. Statistically there is a greater chance of a room full of monkeys with computers creating Pong then there is of this being natural variation.


At June 07, 2007 3:23 AM , Anonymous Tim said...

I came hoping to see something about Oman, but I will take a warm winter in Sweden instead I guess. My question is: why is it so statistically impossible for this to be natural?

At June 13, 2007 3:12 PM , Blogger Matt_J said...

Not impossible, but highly improbable. Last winter the Netherlands' weather service noted that the previous 4 months had been 3 to 4 C above normal in northern europe, and that if this was due to natural variation, it was the kind of thing that would only happen once every 10,000 years. Now it has been a full year of quite unusually warm months. What are the odds then that this is entirely due to natural variation-- this might happen once every million years?


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