"RSS satellite data is now published for December (2014), and confirms that global atmospheric temperatures for 2014 are nowhere near the record being touted by NOAA and NASA.
The anomaly for the year has finished at 0.256C, which ties with 2007 as only the sixth warmest year since 1979. Not only that, but last year was well below the record set in 1998, and also 2010.
It has been claimed that there is a lag before tropospheric temperatures reflect higher sea temperatures. However, monthly temperatures according to RSS peaked in June and July, a couple of months after El Nino conditions peaked, as would be expected. Since then temperatures have dropped back and stabilised.
Unless El Nino conditions strengthen during the winter, it seems unlikely that we will see any significant increase in RSS temperatures in the next few months.
We await the UAH numbers with interest, but it looks as if the much more accurate and comprehensive satellite data will confirm that the temperature standstill has just extended for another year."
About troposphere, from windows2universe.org:
"The troposphere is the lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere. The troposphere starts at Earth's surface and goes up to a height of 7 to 20 km (4 to 12 miles, or 23,000 to 65,000 feet) above sea level. Most of the mass (about 75-80%) of the atmosphere is in the troposphere. Almost all weather occurs within this layer. Air is warmest at the bottom of the troposphere near ground level. Higher up it gets colder. Air pressure and the density of the air are also less at high altitudes. The layer above the troposphere is called the stratosphere.
Nearly all of the water vapor and dust particles in the atmosphere are in the troposphere. That is why most clouds are found in this lowest layer, too. The bottom of the troposphere, right next to the surface of Earth, is called the "boundary layer". In places where Earth's surface is "bumpy" (mountains, forests) winds in the boundary layer are all jumbled up. In smooth places (over water or ice) the winds are smoother. The winds above the boundary layer aren't affected by the surface much.
The troposphere is heated from below. Sunlight warms the ground or ocean, which in turn radiates the heat into the air right above it. This warm air tends to rise. That keeps the air in the troposphere "stirred up". The top of the troposphere is quite cold. The temperature there is around -55° C (-64° F)! Air also gets 'thinner' as you go higher up. That's why mountain climbers sometimes need bottled oxygen to breathe.
The boundary between the top of the troposphere and the stratosphere (the layer above it) is called the tropopause. The height of the tropopause depends on latitude, season, and whether it is day or night. Near the equator, the tropopause is about 20 km (12 miles or 65,000 feet) above sea level. In winter near the poles the tropopause is much lower. It is about 7 km (4 miles or 23,000 feet) high. The jet stream is just below the tropopause. This "river of air" zooms along at 400 km/hr (250 mph)!"
"Last modified January 11, 2010."
"The source of this material is Windows to the Universe, at http://windows2universe.org/ from the National Earth Science Teachers Association (NESTA). The Website was developed in part with the support of UCAR and NCAR, where it resided from 2000 - 2010. © 2012 National Earth Science Teachers Association. Windows to the Universe® is a registered trademark of NESTA. All Rights Reserved"