Is Siberian Cold Being Reported?

By: By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit (from
By: By Steve McIntyre, Climate Audit (from

Climate Audit, December 18, 2008

One of the interesting by-products of the GISS screw-up in October was that we learned the names and locations of quite a few Siberian weather stations - that are glaring “hot spots” on temperature anomaly maps. However, most of these places are among the coldest places on earth.

One of them was Verhojansk, about which Anthony Watts had an interesting post last week; it was one of the screwed up NOAA-Hansen sites. It vies for the title of coldest place (in the Northern Hemisphere) with nearby Ojmjakon. (the place where the lowest-ever temperature in the Northern hemisphere was recorded - Verkhoyansk with a record of minus 67.8 degrees Celsius (minus 90 degrees Fahrenheit) and Oymyakon with a minimum of minus 67.7 degrees Celsius (minus 89.9 degrees Fahrenheit).

I’ve taken to occasionally checking on these sites to see how they’re doing and there’s something interesting to watch for over the next few days - the sort of thing that might appeal to people who liked following the summer ice melt.

Anyway, in the GHCND history for Ojmjakon, there hasn’t been a minus 60 deg C day in December for 15 years and only one in the past 25 years. There has been only one December temperature at Ojmjakon below 62.5 in the GHCND archive (since 1943) - a reading of -62.8 in 1984.

But according to the forecasts here, a low of minus 60 is forecast tonight and minus 63 tomorrow.
(ICECAP NOTE: It reached -60C, -76F on the 20th and 22nd).

The GHCND daily records are maintained consistently up to 2000, but archiving of daily data became very sporadic following the IPCC TAR report. Over the past week, GHCN-D has not managed to record temperatures that were readily available online.

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