Global Warming Science -


Study Contradicts Obama’s Energy Secretary on Midwest Temperatures

-      Universities Promote Alarmist Misinformation


[last update: 2010/03/12]



Obama’s Energy Secretary, Steven Chu


in the Midwest, the temperature will increase 5 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit on average. With hotter summers, that means that during the growing season, the soil moisture will decrease by 20 to 30 percent. Now, if you take that at face value, then the great agricultural machinery of the U.S. is at risk, with huge economic consequences.





[update: 2010/03/12]


Northwestern University, Chicago


Heat-related deaths, the spread of infectious diseases and the threat of natural disasters in Chicago could skyrocket in the coming decades unless greenhouse gas emissions are curbed … In July 1995, an extreme heat wave hit Chicago, killing over 750 people and hospitalizing thousands more. Projections from the Chicago Climate Task-Force show that heat waves as severe as the 1995 event could occur as frequently as every other year by the end of the century.


There’s no doubt among mainstream scientists that climate is changing and that we’re contributing to it,” said Dr. Paul Epstein, associate director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at the Harvard University Medical School. “I really think that there’s a deep down emotional desire to think this evolving instability in the climate and its potential consequences for our health, for the global community, for politics is not really happening. But it’s very real.”







The Study




From the above study:


  • While average global temperatures rose about 0.74 degrees Celsius during the past century, the U.S. Midwest has experienced a noticeable slump in summer temperatures in recent decades … the recent cool temperatures seem to be part of a steady long-term decline in summertime highs in Chicago


  • Changnon suggested that fewer hot days and more precipitation are linked, because humid air warms more slowly than dry air does. One likely source of the extra moisture is the region’s agriculture. Plants pump vast amounts of water from surface soil into the atmosphere as they grow, and thirsty row crops such as corn and soybeans are much more prevalent in the region these days — about 97 percent of farmland is planted in those crops now, versus about 57 percent in the 1930s


  • Even if much of the extra summer rainfall in the Midwest derives from water in local soils, the original source of that moisture might be an irrigation spigot somewhere on the Great Plains. A rapid rise in irrigation in that region apparently has boosted precipitation downwind in the Midwest




The Data


State temperature and precipitation data can be plotted at the NOAA NCDC website:


The following figures show the average summer temperature and summer precipitation for Illinois. Neither trend is statistically significant.





The following figure shows the annual average temperature for the 5x5 degree grid encompassing Chicago (from the Hadley / UEA Climatic Research Unit (CRU) data plotted at

The figure includes a linear trend and confidence interval of the trend (0.019 +/- 0.061 deg./decade). There is no statistically significant trend in annual average temperature.






The Lunch


Steven Chu is out to lunch if he thinks somehow the above trends will suddenly change and it will warm by several degrees just because the climate models say so.


For more on Chu’s lack of scientific understanding (as well as other Obama people) see:



Universities promoting alarmist scare stories when the data show the opposite – they have joined the propaganda team.