Fox Again Hosts Sussman's Confused Climate Analysis

Asserting that “there is no global warming,” Brian Sussman, radio host and author of Climategate: A Veteran Meteorologist Exposes The Global Warming Scam, claimed on the Fox Business Network that the “hottest decade in history was the 1930s.” In fact, Sussman's claim is based on outdated data for the United States, not on global temperature data, which shows that 2000-2009 was the warmest decade on record.

Sussman Claims “Hottest Decade In History Was The 1930s”

From the January 31 edition of Fox Business' Follow the Money:

ERIC BOLLING (host): Even if we were to agree, which I'm not sure we are going to agree on it. But, what is it? Somewhere around a half a degree over the last 30 years the globe has warmed. Is that enough to effect that much change and really need that much regulation?

SUSSMAN: Yeah so, Alan's cute with these “Oh you're a flat earther” -- Listen, I've got 300 footnotes in my book. I'm using government data to prove my point. And you're absolutely right, since the little ice age, plane, train, automobile, leaf blower, lawn mower, all invented, population of the earth grown exponentially. The temperatures warm .7 degrees Celsius and most of that occurred before 1940 and the hottest decade in history was the 1930s not these last 10 years, so there is no global warming.[Fox Business Network, Follow the Money, 1/31/11]

Each Major Climate Center Said 2000-2009 Was Warmest Decade On Record For the Planet

NASA Goddard Institute For Space Studies: 2000-2009 Was “The Warmest Decade On Record.” NASA reported in January 2010 that “January 2000 to December 2009 was the warmest decade on record. Throughout the last three decades, the GISS surface temperature record shows an upward trend of about 0.2°C (0.36°F) per decade.” [NASA, 1/21/10]

NOAA: “The 2000-2009 Decade Is The Warmest On Record.” NOAA's National Climate Data Center reported in December 2009: “The 2000s decade (2000-2009) is the warmest on record for the globe, with a surface global temperature of 0.54°C (0.96°F) above the long-term (20th century) average. This shattered the 1990s value of 0.36°C (0.65°F). See the global time series." [NOAA, December 2009]

Met Office: 2000-2009 “Has Been, By Far, The Warmest Decade On The Instrumental Record.” The Met Office reported in December 2009, “The first decade of this century has been, by far, the warmest decade on the instrumental record. New figures released today in Copenhagen show that -- despite 1998 being the warmest individual year -- the last ten years have clearly been the warmest period in the 160-year record of global surface temperature, maintained jointly by the Met Office Hadley Centre and the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.”

Met Office Warmest Decade

Sussman's Claim Based On Outdated Data For U.S. Alone, Not The Entire Globe

NASA Said 1930s Were Warmest For The United States, 12 Years Ago. In 1999 NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) stated that “U.S. climate has been following a different course than global climate” and added:

The U.S. has warmed during the past century, but the warming hardly exceeds year-to-year variability. Indeed, in the U.S. the warmest decade was the 1930s and the warmest year was 1934. Global temperature, in contrast, had passed 1930s values by 1980 and the world has warmed at a remarkable rate over the last 25 years.


In the meantime, we can venture two “predictions” on “whither U.S. climate”. First, regarding U.S. temperature, we have argued (Hansen et al., 1999a) that the next decade will be warmer than the 1990s, rivaling if not exceeding the 1930s. The basis for that prediction is the expectation of continued greenhouse warming and probable slackening of regional ocean cooling. [NASA, August 1999]

Continental U.S. Makes Up 1.6% Of The Earth's Surface. According to NASA, the contiguous 48 United States comprise “1.6% of the Earth's surface.” [NASA, accessed 2/1/11]

Data Has Since Shown That 2000s Were Warmest Decade For U.S. From NOAA:

U.S. annual temperature anomaly

NOAA: “Surface Temperatures Averaged Across The U.S. Have Also Risen.” NOAA explains: “Surface temperatures averaged across the U.S. have also risen. While the U.S. temperature makes up only part of the global temperature, the rise over a large area is not inconsistent with expectations in a warming planet. Because the U.S. is just a fraction of the planet, it is subject to more year-to-year variability than the planet as a whole. This is evident in the U.S. temperature trace.” [NOAA, accessed 2/1/11]

University Corporation For Atmospheric Research: Natural Climate Variability “Can Be Very Large” On Regional Scale. The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research states:

Global average temperature increases in recent decades are primarily due to increasing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere resulting from human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels. Yet, the magnitude of the anthropogenic influence on regional climate remains uncertain. A principal reason is because the effects of human activities are superimposed on the background “noise” of natural climate variability, which can be very large regionally.

Global warming does not mean that temperature increases are spatially uniform or monotonic: some places warm more than the average and some places cool. Regional changes in temperature are often associated with changes natural patterns (or modes) of the atmospheric and oceanic circulation, such as the El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon. Changes in the climate system from human activities may affect these modes, however, so quantifying the anthropogenic and natural components of the observed warming on regional scales remains a difficult and critical research question. [UCAR, accessed 1/2/11]

Fox News Previously Hosted Sussman To Cast Doubt On Global Warming Science

Sussman Spread Climate Misinformation On Fox & Friends. On January 27, Fox & Friends hosted Sussman to cast doubt on global warming science by, in part, misrepresenting Arctic sea ice and temperature data. [Media Matters, 1/28/11]

Sussman Has A History Of Outrageous Comments. Sussman, a former radio show meteorologist, has a history of making inflammatory comments and is a frequent promoter of “birther” and other conspiracy theories. His website is full of inflammatory, anti-gay, anti-Muslim and right-wing rhetoric. [Media Matters, 1/28/11]