Huge BoM rain and temperature prediction failures

This Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) prediction for summer made on 24 November 2009 has turned out to be so exactly wrong in several aspects. You can see in the BoM Outlook archive It is not only the 24 November prediction that is so wrong – check out their maps of predicted rain percentages published on 21 December, 19 January and there is no learning going on. Check actual rain here, choose 3 months to see summer rain.
BoM failure
The temperature Outlook for summer was just as hopeless but I have not got the time to put all these maps up – you can check against maps you can make here – make maps for 3 months for max and min anomaly, they compare with the BoM max and min temperature prediction maps for summer.
I am at a loss to understand how a well funded org of professionals can repeatedly get these Outlooks so wrong. Obviously the models they use are not worth a cup full of warm spit.
Australia pays for better and deserves better.

23 comments to Huge BoM rain and temperature prediction failures

  • Uri

    I see the SOI is negative so we are still in an El Nino, right ?
    How come we are getting all this rain in an El Nino ?
    I thought El Nino was associated with drought in Australia.

  • mitchel44

    Well, I would venture a guess that we really don’t know that much about el nino’s effects in a negative PDO cycle. Our overall knowledge of el nino/la nina and their effects dates back less than 50 years, and most of what we think we know from the last 30. PDO has been mainly positive over the last 30 years, jisao.washington.edu/pdo/

    The more we think we know, the more we have to learn.

  • Alex Heyworth

    Perhaps it doesn’t matter how much we pay, we will never get better because the task is impossible. However, don’t hold your breath waiting for any meteorological office to admit that any time soon.

    On the other hand, it is alleged that others (eg Piers Corbyn) do in fact do better with non-standard methodologies.

  • Douglas Hoyt

    Back in the early 1980s, I took a look at the skill of these seasonal forecasts for temperature. If the prediction and actual temperature were in the same direction, I said it was a successful prediction. Just random guesses will give an accuracy of 50%. For these models, I found the accuracy was circa 51% or slightly less, so not much better than guessing. Ironically the most successful model was The Old Farmer’s Almanac with about 51%.

    It appears no progress in seasonal forecasts has been made in 30 years. I don’t know if anyone uses them for planning purposes, or why they bother to publish the forecasts.

  • [...] And in Australia the Bureau of Meteorology continue to be exposed as a failure when it comes to predictions; [...]

  • tony

    as a met…when working at the BOM met and discussed with the Climate Section responsible for the Outlooks..and i always used to think..voodoo science..lots of data
    lot’s of hand waving and bingo-3 month Outlook

    read my lips..my exp in weather says-”cannot be done”
    i said that in 1990
    i say it in 2010

    But then again these guys get paid a lot of money to sit in an office and come up with this ..

    a great gig ….but junk Science none-the-less….

  • Marathon Simmo

    And then we have the likes of Al Gore(Bore) and his kin at the UN IPCC who would have us believe that their weather forecasts (models) can reliabily forecast global weather patterns decades in advance driven of course by their fanciful alarmist claims about how CO2 (a pollutent in their view – NOT) is going to be the end of us all – Good Grief.. Give us a break. The sooner that nonsense is exposed for the scam it is and the BOM lift their game the better for us all.

  • NancyL

    not worth a cup full of warm spit.

    Well, let’s let the market determine that price, but don’t let any British professors measure its temperature.

  • Tony Hansen

    Well they get full marks for the place (Australia) and full marks for the time (Summer). They just had some trouble with the little bit at the end (Rainfall).
    To be fair I think we should give them more credit – because I wasn’t always totally confident that they could get the first two right.

  • Romanoz

    Graham Carmody, the weather announcer for local ABC TV said, quoting BOM, that March 2, 2010 was the wettest day on record for Australia! More rain fell on Australia on that day than any other day since records have been kept!
    This fact hasnt got on to BOM’s web site yet, probably spoils the AGW alarmist stuff!

  • Romanoz

    Apologies, BOM did cover the significant rainfall event, I was looking in the media releases but it was under Special Statements – Central Australia! www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/special-statements.shtml
    The most remarkable aspect of this event was the area covered by the heavy rainfall and the total volume of rainfall that fell. Daily totals exceeded 100 mm over 1.7% of Australia on 1 March and 1.9% on 2 March. The latter is the largest area of 100 mm-plus daily totals on a single day in the Australian meteorological record, breaking the previous record of 1.7% set on 22 December 1956

  • val majkus

    I’m sure you’ve heard about the latest CSIRO and BOM relesse “It is very likely that human activities have caused most of the global warming observed since 1950
    There is greater than 90% certainty that increases in greenhouse gas emissions have caused most of the global
    warming since the mid-20th century. International research shows that it is extremely unlikely that the observed
    warming could be explained by natural causes alone. Evidence of human influence has been detected in ocean
    warming, sea-level rise, continental-average temperatures, temperature extremes and wind patterns. CSIRO
    research has shown that higher greenhouse gas levels are likely to have caused about half of the winter rainfall
    reduction in south-west Western Australia.”
    www.bom.gov.au/announcements/media_releases/ho/20100315.shtml
    www.bom.gov.au/announcements/media_releases/ho/20100315a.pdf
    I’d like to make a FOI request to both the CSIRO and BOM
    there are a number of you who are more expert than I am; what should I ask for so that their data can be checked by enthusiastic amateurs

  • Black Duck

    The British “met office” have dropped seasonal forecasts due to public criticism of their accuracy. It may not be long before the BOM follow suit.

  • Romanoz

    Well the IPCC claims that the increase in extreme rainfall events ie daily rainfall exceeding 25mm, is a consequence of “Global Warming” and is predicted by their Models.
    If you look at the Time Series for Very Heavy Daily Rainfall on the BOM site, you will see that the trend is “relatively stable”, to use the CSIRO description for increasing precipitation. Also, the last 9 years have been below the average for the 110 yr record. In no other period do you get such a run of below average “very heavy rainfall”. Another failure of their models!

  • Ian George

    Spot on, Romanoz. This is a graph that should be shown to prove their lies.

    The recently released CSIRO’s State of the Climate document also has problems with its data. It shows a drop in rainfall around Alice Springs from 1960-2009 thus giving an impression of declining rainfall for that region.
    Yet using the BOM’s own data there was less rainfall between 1960-1969 (210mm/year) than 2000-2009 (292mm/year).

    The average rainfall is 276mm/year. This is a straight-out false graph.
    I’m sure there are more discrepancies – I have also found the same with the temperature data around Rockhampton.
    Who is doing this data processing?

    The climate statement can be downloaded from:-
    www.csiro.au/news/State-of-the-Climate.html

  • Romanoz

    Ian, did you see the Rainfall section. Next to the map were these comments

    Trend over five decades
    of increasing rainfall in
    many parts of northern
    and central Australia
    (see map)
    • Trend over five decades
    of rainfall decreasing
    across much of southern
    and eastern Australia
    (see map)

    I have the spin words in bold!
    Go to the BOM site on rainfall trends over the last century. Select the regions below from the drop down box.
    Here are the results of annual rainfall for the last 110 years.
    Australia wide ….. increasing trend
    Southern …………increasing trend
    Northern …………increasing trend
    Eastern …………increasing trend
    Murray Darling ……increasing trend
    SE Australia ……..decreasing trend
    SW Australia ……..decreasing trend
    The decreasing trend in the SE is slight but this is where most of the population is. The decreasing trend in the SW is very pronounced. However, the dominant trend across Australia is an increasing trend. This is not what the comments above convey and is definitely not what we have been told would result from Global Warming.
    Omission of relevant facts is falsification.

  • Ian George

    Spot on, Romanoz .
    At the moment I’m rechecking stations around Alice Springs to see if there has been a drop-off in that area as reported in the CSIRO statement. Neighbouring stations show many gaps in the most recent data making them not worthy of inclusion.
    At Alice springs itself, the average rainfall for the 3 decades, 1940-1969 was 237mms/year. The past 3 decades, 1980-2009 has been 271mms/year. This is an increase of over 10%, not a decline.
    After the 1970s (406mms/year and the wettest decade), 2000-2009 ties with the 1980s as being the second wettest decade since the 1940s.
    It is well known that the first half of the 1900′s had less rainfall than the second half. Maybe we have just returned to the ‘Federation drought’ cycle (100 year cycle) for the southern areas.
    I think I’ll send this to the CSIRO and see what their reply is.

  • val majkus

    and who could say it better
    www.spectator.co.uk/australia/page_2/5864012/dark-thoughts-on-earth-hour.thtml
    From the hills over Hobart’s Sandy Bay, the lights from at least one house will be blazing even more brightly than usual during Earth Hour on Saturday night.

    That would be the family home of emeritus professor Garth Paltridge, former chief research scientist of the CSIRO’s division of atmospheric research, visiting ANU research fellow, and fellow of the Australian Academy of Science.

    Paltridge, an Australian Enlightenment man to his bootstraps, will most likely be upstairs in his study, working on some new learned paper on climate change. He will also be plotting new ways to help arrest what he sees as the continuing sad decline of institutional science in Australia, under the pressures of the global warming ‘doomsday cult’ whose followers will be turning out their lights for the hour.

    This week I phoned Paltridge to hear what he had to say about the CSIRO’s new six-page publication, ‘The State of the Climate’, produced with the Bureau of Meteorology. This, of course, is the leaflet that has been seized upon eagerly by the warming alarmists at the ABC and elsewhere for some desperately-needed reassurance that all is not lost in the wake of the Climategate and IPCC scandals. To Paltridge, it’s just another sad indication of the decline in scientific objectivity. ‘This is a slipshod, slippery little document,’ he tells me. ‘It looks as if it’s been hastily thrown together by some committee. They don’t even tell you from what data they’ve drawn their conclusions.’

    He points to the assertion that Australian average temperatures ‘are projected’ to rise by 0.6 to 1.5 degrees by 2030. ‘Projected from what?’ he asks. ‘From their own past observations? Or from climate models? They don’t say.’

    read on at the link; you won’t be diappointed

  • val majkus

    link to a blog site rcs-audit.blogspot.com/ with an interesting article on The “Climate Data Derivatives” Market
    first para
    To understand how the CSIRO+BoM can make the assertion that “all of Australia has experienced warming over the past 50 years” it is essential to pay close attention to the language used in the introductory paragraph of their brochure:

    Since 1960 the mean temperature in Australia has increased by about 0.7°C.

    read on and you’ll be surprised

  • Ian George

    Val

    An extremely interesting article which reflects what I have found. Many stations seem to have had their pre-1980 raw temperature data changed when compiling the trend data graphs in order to show a more pronounced warming trend.
    Another interesting development is what appears to be an elimination of homogenised data for some stations on the GISSNASA data base.
    Last year while investigating data for Lismore (Centre St) there was a difference between the ‘combining sources at same location’ and the ‘after homogeneity adjustment’, the latter showing a greater warming trend. However now there is no difference between the two – the ‘AHA’ has been ‘changed’ back to the localised data.
    See here at ( ‘combining sources at same location’):
    data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/gistemp_station.py?id=501945860000&data_set=1&num_neighbors=1
    and (‘after homogeneity adjustment’)
    data.giss.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/gistemp/gistemp_station.py?id=501945860000&data_set=2&num_neighbors=1
    It will be interesting if they have done this in order to replace it with ‘better’ homogenised data later down the track.

  • Seriously! I have already been browsing google all day due to this and that i lastly think it is listed here!

  • Peter Varney

    How anyone can take these outlooks seriously is beyond me .
    Why bother , when I’m pretty sure it’s company policy at the bureau , that long term statistics and the safer ground of not going out on a limb (ie ; ur on the side of caution )is what keeps them in a job , rather than studying patterns and following the worst case scenario .

    I now solely rely on two different methods of short , medium and long term forecasts , one is access POAMMA via BOM and keep an eye on the rolling 30 day averages of SOI and IOD , and secondly look directly at the US Navy sites that give 180hr updates of mean surface pressure and 12hr precipitation rates calculated by two computer models NOGAPS and GFS . Take the average of these and your best served by the NOGAPS model at the longer forecast and switch towards the GFS as it shortens . I believe 90% of the time the BOM does exactly the same thing for their short term water and land predictions . But without typically adjusting for known local geographical and vegetational influences for their longer term forecasts . Quite simply evaporation is going to help cold fronts produce better rainfall in southern Victoria if months earlier Southwestern Queensland has flooded down into the Menindee and Eyre lakes systems .
    Again FNMOC is sometimes hard to get used to , but once enough time is put in to familiarise yourself any prefered data can be extracted to your liking , be it farming , fishing , surfing , sailing or even planning a forecast for the masses . Explore ……

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