Early figures suggest third warmest spring on record

Early statistics from the Met Office National Climate Information Centre show that this has been one of the warmest springs in records dating back to 1910.

Based on figures up until 28 May and then assuming average conditions to the end of the month, the mean temperature for the UK for the season is 8.97 °C, third warmest in the records (beaten by 2007 with 9.05 °C and 2011 with 9.15 °C).

Looking at specific countries, it is currently the third warmest spring for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

However, it has been particularly warm in Scotland compared to average. Depending on temperatures in the final three days of May, this spring could be Scotland’s warmest since records began with a current mean temperature of 7.63 °C, just above the record set in 2011 of 7.61 °C.

Each of the three months of spring have seen above average temperatures. The figures for May up to the 28th of the month show it has been 0.8 °C above the long-term average for the UK.

This continues a run of six months where the UK mean temperature was warmer than average, with all the months from December through to April each being at least 1 °C warmer than the long-term average.

Apart from the above average temperatures, statistics for May otherwise show it has been duller and wetter than average so far.

Sunshine is down compared to the long-term average, with the UK having seen 141.8 hours which is 76% of what we would normally expect.

Scotland and Northern Ireland have seen particularly low levels of sun – Scotland has seen 103.8 hours which is 58% of the average, and Northern Ireland has seen just 51% of its average with 92.9 hours.

Rainfall statistics for May show that it has been a wet month so far, with the UK having seen 97.7mm of rain which is 140% of the long-term average.

When it comes to rainfall for spring overall, it has been only slightly wetter than average. The figures show that spring is about 7% wetter than the long-term average.

Northern Ireland actually had a slightly drier spring, with only 91.8% of the average rainfall.


Mean Temperature Rainfall
Spring* Actual Diff from Avg Actual % of Avg
degC degC mm %
UK 8.97 1.23 255.1 107
England 9.76 1.24 201 111
Wales 9.04 1.03 295.5 101
Scotland 7.63 1.3 339.8 107
N Ireland 9 1.12 222.7 92

*Please note these are projected numbers that include statistics from 1 March to 28 May, then assume average conditions for the final few days of the season. They may not accurately represent the final full-season figures.


Mean Temperature Sunshine hours Rainfall
May** Actual Diff from Avg Actual % of Avg Actual % of Avg
degC degC hours % mm %
UK 11.1 0.8 141.8 76 97.7 140
England 12 0.8 170.6 90 91.1 156
Wales 11.1 0.5 138 74 124.2 145
Scotland 9.7 0.9 103.8 58 102.9 122
N Ireland 11.2 1 92.9 51 90.1 124

** Please note these are preliminary statistics from 1-28 May. The final figures will change once statistics from the final few days of the month are included.

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26 Responses to Early figures suggest third warmest spring on record

  1. nuwurld says:

    Dear Met. Nice factual report. No inferences about future trending. Simple reportage of the data.

    However, if I may, I would like to add some comments. I would urge, particularly the farming and the commodities industries to listen to a few words of warning.

    This winter and the following run into spring has given us a chance to build upon stocks of grain and general supplies that might well be needed should the future growing season be shortened. We should be careful about the quantities allotted for storage (if push comes to shove) and non essential usage. This is not fear mongering but sensible use of resources in the face of changing weather patterns.

    The Earth’s fundamental wind patterns are in a period of change due to changes in the solar flux and resonances supported by the Earth moon system and solar system dynamics.

    This winter for the UK was strongly influenced by the westerly phase of the Quasi Biennial Oscillation (as wonderfully reported by the MO). Due to its nature the oscillation will not prefer westerlies next year. This will make the chances of a major sudden stratospheric warming event more likely, especially with a solar flux in decline, as supported by;


    Over the next decade we will see more meridional swinging of Rossby wave modulated geostrophic wind patterns and the lack of zonality will weaken the North Atlantic surface currents. This will end the regime of the positive phase of the Atlantic Multi Decadal Oscillation (AMO) and bring the ice back to the Norwegian and Barents seas.


    More sinister is the continual rising trend of Antarctic sea ice as can be viewed here;


    The Southern Hemisphere is the long term integrator of thermal change due to the heat capacity of the Southern ocean.

    If we find, in a decade, that the Arctic sea ice has recovered due to entering the negative phase of the AMO and the Antarctic sea ice is still rising then we are in a situation risking albedo driven glaciation.

    The long term Holocene trend is one of cooling, interrupted by warmer periods (Minoan, Roman, Medieval). We know that the 65deg North insolation has for a few thousand years been insufficient to drag the Earth out of a glacial period should one occur.

    Beyond this current solar downturn which will last for approximately 30years we can expect another naturally occurring warm period lasting for perhaps 200years, (provided this cooler period coming doesn’t leave us with retention of NH summer snow at the 65th parallel, which is likely to onset glaciation)

    Don’t be fooled by the ‘threat’ of warming due to ‘enhanced greenhouse effects’.

    The danger now is a modest one of some cooling initially with an eye on global ice levels.

    Please don’t be lead by ‘warming’ nonsense.

    Only with a broad spread of accountable information can we sensible prepare ourselves for the real threats that we face within our natural environment.

    Regards, Geoff.

    • jsam says:

      I look forward to reading your reputable citations in support of your global cooling hypothesis.

      As for Antarctic sea ice, do you think the webbing on the Titanic’s deckchairs should be arranged horizontally or vertically?

      The earth is losing a trillion tons of ice per year:

      – 159 Gt Antarctic land ice, McMillan el al, GRL (2014)
      + 26 Gt Antarctic sea ice, Holland et al, J Climate (2014)
      – 300 Gt Arctic sea ice, PIOMAS
      – 378 Gt Greenland, Enderlin et al, GRL (2014)
      – 278 Gt other land based glaciers, Gardner et al. Science (2013)

      – 1,070 Gt, total

      • nuwurld says:

        John, you always bring some great analogies. I hadn’t thought of the similarities between anthropological global warming and the Titanic story! Thank you;

        A classic example of human overconfidence.

        Unsinkable ship/sunk

        Settled science dictating warming/no warming

        “The vibration you heard was not the ship hitting an iceberg sir. We’ve probably thrown a propeller blade, (that’s why the world’s not warming as 72 climate models predicted). That’s it, we’ve probably thrown a propeller blade”.

        In all of the above, what is the recent trending? We only have accurate instrumental global records for the last 30years, how do you explain the recent lack of warming?

        Please show references to accredited scientists who predicted the pause.

        John, as the bulk of ice is in Antarctica, how can you be so dismissive of rising Antarctic sea ice?

        Dr. Spencer and Dr. Christy compile the globally averaged microwave data sets for the lower troposphere, which show no warming trend since 1998, can be viewed here;

        The only sets warming are ocean heat uptake, which everyone knows is thermal lag due to the thermal inertia of the oceans. The oceans cannot heat up as fast as the surface. With respect to any volume of ice ice loss, what would you expect in a warm world? Irrespective of the cause.

        How can you explain positive sea ice anomalies?

        Good to have you back John.


      • nuwurld says:

        John. As another point of interest, NOAA are predicting positive Arctic sea ice anomalies THIS YEAR! As never witnessed during the satellite era.

        (You probably wouldn’t rate the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as a ‘credible’ source though).

        Have a nice day.

      • nuwurld says:

        Sorry, please replace

        “as never witnessed in the satellite era” with,

        ” as not seen for over a decade”,

        My apologies!

      • jsam says:

        I notice your attempt at deflection, Geoff. I have provided references in support of the continued loss of a trillion tons of ice per year.

        You have attempted to change the subject.

        The earth continues to warm.

        Besides, I thought you guys hated computer models? 🙂 “NOAA’s NCEP coupled forecast system model version 2 predicts that Arctic sea ice extent will be above the long term average in August, September and October 2014 (see graphs on right). So far this year, Arctic sea extent has been tracking below average and the computer model predicts that this will continue through to July. It is important to note that this is a computer model forecast and that the actual extent on Arctic sea ice may vary significantly.”

      • jsam says:

        Place your sea ice extents bets here, http://tamino.wordpress.com/2014/06/10/arctic-sea-ice-minimum-forecast/.

        So far, Watts has always lost.

      • nuwurld says:

        John, thanks for the reply. In order to insinuate that I have changed the subject, old bean, you have to understand the issue.

        You replied to my comment with regard to surface area coverage with a response about volume. To which I have to ask you again, (again for emphasis),

        “With respect to any volume of ice ice loss, what would you expect in a warm world, irrespective of the cause (of the warming)?”

        As far as,

        “The Earth continues to warm”,

        is concerned, then if we measure the surface air temperature with thermometers like we have been doing, then all the data sets disagree with you!

        As I have said, the heat capacity of the oceans leads to ‘inevitable’ lag.

        John, modelling is a part of modern science. Delusional faith that if something ‘is’ modelled then it becomes ‘real’ is abhorrent.

        Do you not find it amazing that despite the high ‘confidence’ of warming and the prediction that around now (from just a few years earlier) the Arctic would be ‘ice free’ during the summer, that a body such as NOAA, would be predicting another ‘significant’ summer extent gain?

        Model or not, you’ve got to smile at the irony.

        My predictions are more modest for this period of forecast.

        John, as a closing note, the Earth’s energy budget doesn’t care about volume of ice. The reflective properties of even a thin layer of ice affect the portion of solar energy thermalised. The inability of this warm world to melt away this ‘thin layer’ weakens your argument of warming.

        The strengthening, due to extent, of this ‘thin layer’ of reflective matter with high long wave emissivity is ignored at your peril. It reduces the portion of incident flux thermalised. Whether it is 20cm or 20m, initially, doesn’t matter.

        Regards, Geoff

      • jsam says:

        Creationist Roy? Try again. Climate is measured over 30+ years. Try again. http://tamino.wordpress.com/2014/01/30/global-temperature-the-post-1998-surprise/

        In the meantime the oceans warm, rise and acidify. Global ice levels recede. Species shift polewards and upwards.

        A trillion tons of ice lost per year. A trillion. Less than 3% of that is growing. Somehow you missed the 97%. That sounds eerily familiar.

      • nuwurld says:


        “A trillion tons of ice lost per year. A trillion.”

        So you have specified an accountable figure of 1,017Gt, and emphasised this this by (bleating) “a trillion, a trillion”. So we’ll use this ‘accountable’ number as an estimate, shall we?

        The Earth’s surface is around 5.1e+14m2. 70% of which is water. That’s around,

        3.57e+14m2 of ocean surface.

        You have quoted a mass equivalent of melt whereby 1tonne is 1m3. Thereby 1,000Gt is 1e+12m3 of water by volume. Agree?

        Therefore 1e+12m3 spread over the worlds oceans accounts for,

        1e+12/3.57e+14, or 0.0028m

        Or 2.8mm.

        So, my ‘unskeptical’, ‘head in the sand’ friend, you have just negated ‘ocean heat uptake’ by accounting for the bulk of the ‘fake’ sea level rise of 3mm/year in lost land ice.

        Meanwhile your ‘buddies’ are busy accounting for the bulk of the ‘fake’ 3mm/year in ‘ocean heat uptake’ at 4 Hiroshima bomb equivalents.

      • nuwurld says:

        John, which part of this do you not understand?

        Ocean outgassing accounts for the bulk of atmospheric levels (Henry’s law). This and nature’s response is the reason for anthropological output’s inability to swamp the seasonal signal in CO2.

        The ocean’s don’t acidify because they are buffered by the carbonate/bicarbonate buffer. Like our bodies they do not change pH in response to any small change. The oceans have endured many times this amount in CO2 change without significant changes in acidity.

      • nuwurld says:


        “species shift poleward and upwards”

        Are you acknowledging there, natures ability to respond to natural climate variability?

        Not too sure about the ‘upward’ though. Some of the higher intellectual groupings around the 97th percentile are in regression.

      • nuwurld says:

        John. The NOAA ‘Budget of Recent Global Sea Level Rise’ 2005-2012,

        Click to access NOAA_NESDIS_Sea_Level_Rise_Budget_Report_2012.pdf

        puts limits on the contribution from land ice melt.

        According to this budget the ocean mass increase due to melt is capped at 1+/-0.2mm per year, or 36% of your trillion (TRILLION!) tonnes.

        More interestingly, the figure of 1mm per year contains a ‘Paulson Glacial Isostatic Adjustment’ which is 0.9mm per year. To quote this report, (and try not to laugh), (my emphasis),

        “We apply a model (Paulson et al, 2007) that EFFECTIVELY INCREASES the trend in OBSERVED SL(mass) by 0.9mm/a”

        So then, the OBSERVED contribution of sea level due to mass increase is 0.1mm per year, made up to 1mm per year by a correction of 0.9mm per year!!!!!!!

        So, the OBSERVED sea level change due to ocean mass increase due to the addition of land ice melt is 0.1mm/year or 3.6% of your trillion (TRILLION!) tonnes. Mind you, if we retain the error bars of +/-0.2mm, that could just be a ‘drop in the ocean’. Still let’s not be pedantic.

        Don’t you just love it.

      • nuwurld says:

        Met Office.

        Isn’t it amazing. My comments in ‘moderation’ for six days. This is 22:20 24/06. Previous un viewable for six days. Every time my comments become viewable to the public someone has responded.

        Bit weird, eh?

        I never receive notification until my response and a closely timed reply are in public view.

        Someone always has the last word.

        Still jsam is no trouble and it all goes on internet record.

        I have the internet reply email times.

    • jsam says:

      Back to back warmest months too. http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/may-2014-earths-2nd-consecutive-warmest-month-on-record

      There is nought less sceptical than a “climate sceptic”.

      Accusing scientists of fakery is quackery.

      • nuwurld says:

        “Accusing scientists of fakery is quackery”.

        Mmmmmm. If something doesn’t add up John, it doesn’t add up. Simple as. I don’t care whether it comes from a bloke ‘down the pub’ or an administration.

        Unfortunately for certain climate authorities, previous data sets are viewable if people take the time to look. Therefore inconsistencies are accountable to the system methodology and viewable to the eyes of the public. “Stoopid is as stoopid does”.

        I know you love Anthony Watts. He’s recently been sent freely two sets of data from NOAA. It goes like this;

        For the contiguous USA, the record for maximum temperature was July 1936, until July 2012, when this monthly temperature was exceeded.

        However, according to ‘current’ data from NOAA, 1936 is now back in front!

        Here is the link,



        Someone is having a laugh John.

        As for NASA GISS data, again half of what you are comparing is raw(ish) data with a smoothing algorithm.


        You may wish to undermine the credibility of these sources John, however the data sets and their inconsistencies are available to the public. They are questionable.

        So in answer to your back to back warmest months;


        As you yourself have pointed out, climate is measured over a period that eradicates annual variability, therefore monthly values are less important than erroneous annual peaks or troughs.

      • nuwurld says:

        I noticed your deflection John (complete avoidance), wrt Paulson GIA and it being 90% (added by the model) of sea level rise as a function of mass addition. Please feel free to comment.

      • nuwurld says:

        Also John. According to Cryosphere, Antarctic sea ice area as of yesterday and today is at an all time recorded high anomaly.


        John, how come Antarctica isn’t aware of your ‘back to back’ ‘warmist’ months?

      • nuwurld says:

        NOAA are still predicting a positive sea ice anomaly for the Arctic THIS YEAR! Are they credible, or not, as an oceanic and atmospheric authority?

        And yes I know its a model. All global temperature outputs are from models. Argue this one.

  2. jsam says:

    I see you confuse the US with the world. It’s a common mistake amongst Watts’ readership. It’s been the warmest May in the world. 2012 was the warmest year.

    Sea ice? Good thing you have that 2% growth covered. How did you miss the 98% shrinkage? How very clumsy of you.

    The earth is losing a trillion tons of ice per year:

    – 159 Gt Antarctic land ice, McMillan el al, GRL (2014)
    + 26 Gt Antarctic sea ice, Holland et al, J Climate (2014)
    – 300 Gt Arctic sea ice, PIOMAS
    – 378 Gt Greenland, Enderlin et al, GRL (2014)
    – 278 Gt other land based glaciers, Gardner et al. Science (2013)

    – 1,070 Gt, total

    Please feel free to show me the long term Arctic sea ice recovery here, http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/files/2014/04/Figure3.png.

    I love your conspiracy theories. But that is all they are. http://blog.hotwhopper.com/2014/06/noaa-and-temperature-data-it-must-be.html. Did you actually fall for Goddard (birther), Watts and Booker? Wow.

    • nuwurld says:

      John. Thanks for the reply. I can’t believe you’ve fallen for Hansen (birther), NOAA and GISS(Guess).

      The outcome of data set modification due to algorithm failings are independent of local or global format. When I ‘pick on’ an algorithm for local, unless you can show me that global is different then I count my reasoning as valid. Global being the incorrect average of the incorrect smaller areas. Unless you think global averaging suddenly corrects the provable errors and modifications lower down!

      Temperature is already a measure of ‘mean’ kinetic energy. Daily maximum and minimums are then ‘averaged’ for a location and then ‘averaged’ for the gridded area. Then those values are ‘averaged’ to represent a single global value.

      In statistics an average of an already averaged value is a discipline that requires careful weighting. A simple average of an already averaged answer is almost invariably wrong. Averaging global values at any point where each is both a temporal and spatial average taken from a measurement that reflects only a small portion of the total heat content and transfer within a dynamic system is difficult at best. When data sets attempt to represent the global temperature to a resolution of 1/100th of one degree without suggesting an estimation of error, then this is totally misleading in scientific terms. If you don’t understand that then that does not surprise me. It represents the algorithm as much as it does in reality represent a temperature as a single numerical value that represents a complex system.

      With respect to your first link;
      John, again I have to remind you that the fitting of a linear ‘trend’ to a cyclic function doesn’t make sense. We’ve done this before. Nature doesn’t do straight lines! You are not allowing for the second derivative.

      As for your second. Please consider the following;

      Given a set of values from which data is missing, how can estimation of missing values based upon the others, done for any reason, add to the ‘information’ within that data set.

      It can only corrupt the data set or at best leave it unchanged.

      Again if you don’t understand then, well, you can’t put some things where they aren’t already.

      Surely even you can appreciate that concept.

      • jsam says:

        In the real world we just had out warmest May and the second warmest June. And the Hadley global sea surface temperature anomaly for June is +0.562°C, the highest in their dataset, which goes back to 1850. (Not just the highest for June, the higher ever, beating the old record of July 1998 by 0.036°C.)

        Thank you for the lesson in advanced gobbledegook with a minor in mathurbation. I have already read some ot the texts from the Willis Eschenbach School for Incoherent.

        I love the second derivative. It’s one of my favourites. But I think you and your arguments are best suited to the third.

        Conspiracy theorise some more, at your leisure.

      • nuwurld says:

        John. You have me there, I don’t see the relevance between your replies and the real world. You do not have an opinion of your own, or any innate understanding. You bring the voice of others. For that reason I do not value your opinion, as it is not yours. For some reason you are committed to defend the voices of others, but you will not entertain simple logical argument.

        By your own volition, climate is not about short term changes but longer term influences upon a baseline that irradicates inter annual variation. Yet you are quoting statistically insignificant monthly values!!!!

        I see that when you quote a temperature to an accuracy of 1/1000th of a degree as an average of multiple averages over space and time without error bars you have learned nothing. You have your head in the sand.

        When you are quoting individual data sets at such degrees of accuracy, just ask yourself why ‘all’ the data sets don’t ‘agree’ to that level. Within that concept is your downfall.

        Just answer the following,

        From a start date of your choice are current temperature values increasing or decreasing the linear trend? Clue; it has to be over climatic timescales. (Keep the possibility of a second derivative in mind!)

        Btw. What you are observing with respect to sea surface and air temperature peaks is the death of the Kelvin wave that was initially forecast to be a super El Niño, now rendered a mere moderate or more likely a none event. Your two year warming/statistically significant event has just piddled out its heat in the Pacific. Ouch!

        Meanwhile both poles are running at below average temperatures.

        And thank you, being associated with the third derivative is welcomed. The rate at which an acceleration or deceleration is changing in a complex function is not insignificant.

        The aberrance may offend you, but hey, you wish for all to be ‘sheep like’, no?

      • nuwurld says:

        John. Btw, the Earth isn’t losing a trillion tons of ice per year. We’ve done this. Sea level rise doesn’t allow for it. Full stop.

        The Earth isn’t losing anything. When it comes to ice all that was in place by natural causes can be depleted by natural causes and restored by natural causes as the last several ice ages and interglacials have shown. It doesn’t require man’s influence. Prove otherwise.

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