Oh, the sun!

the science of climate change

From The Nation today. I don’t endorse everything in their article, but the information about the sun recalls what was once widely accepted but is lately strangely disregarded: the sun powerfully controls the climate.

The sun will go into “hibernation” mode around 2030, and it has already started to get sleepy. At the Royal Astronomical Society’s annual meeting in July, Professor Valentina Zharkova of Northumbria University in the UK confirmed it – the sun will begin its Maunder Minimum (Grand Solar Minimum) in 15 years. Other scientists had suggested years ago that this change was imminent, but Zharkova’s model is said to have near-perfect accuracy.

– h/t Leonard G. Mills

9 Thoughts on “Oh, the sun!

  1. Richard C (NZ) on November 14, 2015 at 10:38 am said:

    >”At the Royal Astronomical Society’s annual meeting in July, Professor Valentina Zharkova of Northumbria University in the UK confirmed it – the sun will begin its Maunder Minimum (Grand Solar Minimum) in 15 years”

    This was news back in July. Plenty of others saying the same thing:

    “Other researchers and organisations are also predicting global cooling – the Russian Academy of Science, the Astronomical Institute of the Slovak Academy of Scientists, the Institute of Terrestrial Magnetism Russia, Victor Manuel Velesco Herrera at the National University of Mexico, the Bulgarian Institute of Astronomy, Dr Tim Patterson at Carleton University in Canada, Drs Lin Zhen at Nanjing University in China, just to name a few.

    For now nevertheless, the IPCC and other authoritative agencies are sticking to their CO2-dominant climate-forcing theory.

    The IPCC’s CO2 dominant climate forcing theory is being proved invalid by the IPCC’s own criteria (TOA energy balance), so there are actually alternative testable climate scenarios contrary to the IPCC’s blinkered view:

    A) Warming
    B) No change (in place right now, relative to CO2-forced model projections at least)
    C) Cooling

    The C) alternative probably would not be evident until soon after 2020. But the consequences of it occurring make the A) alternative very attractive, especially in the Northern Hemisphere.

    Think airport closures, shipping channels frozen, travel and economic disruption, energy poverty, crop failures, hunger and famine, premature deaths, added costs to everyday living, and so on.

    Remember, we already have this:

    “Meanwhile extreme cold-weather anomalies have occurred around the world. Last year “polar vortices” slammed into the central US and Siberia as a third hovered over the Atlantic. All 50 US states, including Hawaii, had temperatures below freezing for the first time in recorded history. Snowfall records were broken in cities in the US, Canada, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, Japan and elsewhere. Southern American states and central Mexico, where snow is rare, got heavy snow, as did the Middle East.

    This past summer the cold didn’t let up, with more temperature records across the US and rare summer snows seen in Canada, the US and China. Birds have migrated early in the last two years. Antarctic sea ice set a new record in 2013 and it was broken again in 2014.

    Not even Thailand was immune. In 2014 Bangkok hit its coldest low in 30 years, while 63 lives were lost in the North.”

    Hands up all those who want C) ?

  2. Richard C (NZ) on November 14, 2015 at 11:33 am said:

    Worth noting that changes in the sun’s output are in the UV-A/B, Vis, IR-A/B range of the EM spectrum. IR-A/B is the earth’s heating agent particularly in the tropics. Any change means a real change in heating effect once the irradiation reaches the surface. That change is then lagged via the ocean.

    Theoretical GHG warming pertains to the less energetic IR-C range, which is what the sun’s energy is degraded to by the earth’s transfer mediums.

    The extreme estimate of solar change for the 2030s is in the order of 6 W.m-2. Not necessarily what will happen of course but certainly not out of the question (needless to say, the IPCC think it is). So that would be about 3 W.m-2 per decade over the next 2 decades, predominantly in IR-A/B but the response lagged in the atmosphere via the ocean i.e. not instantaneous.

    Theoretical CO2 forcing change by comparison, which (in theory) acts at TOA (not surface), is currently 0.2 – 0.3 W.m-2 per decade in IR-C and theoretically the surface atmospheric response is near instantaneous (i.e. no oceanic lag).

    So the competition is between a real heating agent changing anywhere up to about 3 W.m-2 per decade (already about -0.4 W.m-2 since 2005) in IR-A/B but lagged response in the atmosphere and a theoretical heating agent changing about 0.3 W.m-2 per decade in IR-C but near instantaneous response in the atmosphere.

    My money is on the real heating agent.

  3. Richard C (NZ) on November 14, 2015 at 7:55 pm said:

    I’ve mostly subscribed to the idea that El Nino’s are solar-fueled after the action of wind and cloud but have had an interest in the possibilty of geological origins i.e. geologically induced deep ocean seafloor fluid flow events. The following (abbreviated) is by James Kamis.

    James Edward Kamis is a Geologist and AAPG member of 41 years and who has always been fascinated by the connection between Geology and Climate. Years of research / observation have convinced him that the Earth’s Heat Flow Engine, which drives the outer crustal plates, is also an important driver of the Earth’s climate. [He’s not the only geologist to be saying this, there are obscure papers by others]

    ‘How La Ninas Successfully Prove That El Ninos are Geological in Origin’

    […] The theory posits that all El Ninos are generated by a massive and relatively long-lasting pulse of fluid from deep ocean seafloor geological features that are located in a limited area of the far western Pacific Ocean. This area is one of the most active geological regions on earth. It is comprised of several major fault / upper Earth crust plate boundaries, numerous deep ocean volcanoes, and hundreds of deep ocean hydrothermal vents.

    As this massive and relatively long-lasting pulse of chemically charged super-heated seawater pushes into the overlying ocean, it is progressively moved eastward and shallower by normal ocean currents. Eventually the deep pulse shows up on shallow sea surface temperature maps (SST Maps) as a warm blob, an El Nino is formed. For a more detailed description of how this El Nino process works the reader is directed to a previous CCD post.

    Fine, sounds like an interesting theory, however, what does a La Nina have to do with all of this El Nino geological stuff?

    As the lava pocket / magma chamber slowly exhausts its heat store, it loses its ability to heat the seawater trapped in the surrounding rock layers. The seawater still flows upward along the newly opened fault plane conduits into the overlying ocean, however, it’s just a little cooler. This cooler seawater flow phase is the La Nina. So there is no oscillation, no change of events, simply a cooling of the lava pocket.

    Figure 2 shows the temperature flow progression of El Nino / La Nina fluid flow events during the last thirty five years. This figure clearly shows the initiation of the warm 1998 El Nino phase that seamlessly flows into the cool 1999 La Nina phase. Eventually the entire flow system shuts down and ocean temperatures settle back into their normal none-geologically influenced patterns. The seamless nature of the transition from El Nino to La Nina is very strong evidence that these ocean temperature anomalies are from the same event […]

    There is more evidence, for instance the image atop this article (Figure 1) which clearly shows that El Ninos and La Ninas originate from the same fixed non-moving point source in the far western Pacific Ocean. Changing from a warm phase to a cold phase at the same fixed geographic location is extremely difficult to accomplish utilizing an atmospherically based man-made global warming model. A much better fit is one associated with the geologically based Plate Climatology Theory. This theory states that fixed non-moving geological forces influence / generate many climate events, including El Ninos and La Ninas.

    Lastly, there is a newly discovered and well-suited analog to the El Nino / la Nina geological association. British researchers from the National Oceanography Center in Southampton have discovered a deep ocean hydrothermal vent off the coast of Antarctica near the South Shetland Islands that has a very telling history (see references below). This deep ocean vent has been proven to have recently pulsed significant amounts of super-heated and chemically charged seawater upward from a known fault zone into the overlying ocean. It is now pulsing cooler water into the overlying ocean.

    This is very strong evidence that the theories proposed above are based on sound geological observations.

    This simple and eloquent geological explanation fits the facts. Certainly El Ninos and La Ninas generate all sorts of associated atmospheric and oceanic side effects: increased trade winds, altered ocean currents, strange weather trends, etc. But they are just that, side effects. Climate scientists have for years incorrectly modeled these side effects in an effort to understand the cause of El Ninos and La Ninas. This has led to the development of overly complex theories that require all sorts of oscillations and phases. Importantly, none of these theories correctly predicts future El Ninos or La Ninas.

    The huge number El Nino articles hitting the media is overwhelming, each extolling impending droughts, floods, starvation, and environmental disasters of every sort. Although not explicitly stated in most of these articles, it is strongly implied that man-made atmospheric global warming is to blame.

    Should we act upon this banter or should we stop for a moment and listen to the quiet, concise and oft-correct voice of a woman…La Nina.

    She is speaking. Are you listening?


    Kamis seems to think this theory eliminates the PDO as an event. I don’t get his reasoning, EN/LN and PDO are different phenomena. It just happens that when PDO is positive El Nino’s are predominant and vice versa when negative. James doesn’t recognize the cyclicity.

    Other than that, this theory is far more plausible given the point source of heat than any other IMV.

  4. Bulaman on November 18, 2015 at 6:45 am said:

    El Nino could be a bit weaker than predicted. SOI is very nearly neutral..


  5. LukesAreWrongToo on November 21, 2015 at 6:49 pm said:

    The calculations by Lukes and Warmists are WRONG because they do NOT explain the required energy flows. The direct solar radiation cannot and does not account for the observed surface temperatures on Earth, let alone Venus. Back radiation has nothing to do with such temperatures. It could only slow the rate of cooling by radiation, but the solar radiation is not what gets the surfaces of such planets up to the observed temperatures. How does the surface actually warm each morning? How does the required new thermal energy get into the surface? YOU GUYS HAVE NO UNDERSTANDING AT ALL IN REGARD TO THE THERMODYNAMICS OF PLANETARY TROPOSPHERES. You need to think in a wholly different paradigm – one which has been explained correctly by only one writer in all of world literature. When you understand the maximization of entropy it will blow your mind as to just HOW WRONG all Lukes and Warmists are. The biggest single problem is that they don’t understand thermodynamics and radiation, and they are not prepared to try to learn and understand such. They just scoff at the author of that breakthrough science (already endorsed by other physicists) and think they know better. But water vapor does not raise surface temperatures and they cannot prove it does with any valid study of temperature/precipitation records. THAT SINGLE FACT DEMOLISHES THE GREENHOUSE.

  6. Richard C (NZ) on February 10, 2016 at 8:06 pm said:

    ‘A TSI-Driven (solar) Climate Model’

    February 8, 2016 by Jeff Patterson

    “The fidelity with which this model replicates the observed atmospheric CO2 concentration has significant implications for attributing the source of the rise in CO2 (and by inference the rise in global temperature) observed since 1880. There is no statistically significant signal of an anthropogenic contribution to the residual plotted Figure 3c. Thus the entirety of the observed post-industrial rise in atmospheric CO2 concentration can be directly attributed to the variation in TSI, the only forcing applied to the system whose output accounts for 99.5% ( r2=.995) of the observational record.

    How then, does this naturally occurring CO2 impact global temperature? To explore this we will develop a system model which when combined with the CO2 generating system of Figure 4 can replicate the decadal scale global temperature record with impressive accuracy.

    Researchers have long noted the relationship between TSI and global mean temperature.[5] We hypothesize that this too is due to the lagged accumulation of oceanic heat content, the delay being perhaps the transit time of the thermohaline circulation. A system model that implements this hypothesis is shown in Figure 5.”

    “The results (figure 10) correlate well with observational time series (r = .984).”


    # # #

    Goes a long way towards modeling Multi-Decadal Variation/Oscillation (MDV/MDO).
    Long system lag (“oceanic delay”), well in excess of 70 years depending on TSI input series.
    Cannot be accused of “curve fitting” (but was in comments even so).

  7. Wayne Job on March 24, 2016 at 1:43 am said:

    In the long term it will be found that the Earths surface is kept warm from the Earths internal heat. This heat after 4.5 billion years that keeps the middle of our world molten is what science calls dark energy, it cycles though the universe comes to us mainly from the sun. It mainly enters at the poles and exits 30 degrees north and south of the equator. Heat from the sun helps keep us warm, when the sun is rampant less heat leaves our world, when the sun is quite more heat leaves and a maunder minimum or L.I.A. When the sun and earth are in bad angles we get less internal heat and have a full on ice age. Pretty much regular as clock work.
    Prove I am wrong I would be delighted. Wayne

  8. Richard Treadgold on March 24, 2016 at 9:17 am said:

    “Prove I am wrong I would be delighted.”

    This is startling, Wayne. But the scientific method requires you to present evidence for your hypotheses. We have no obligation to disprove it. What evidence is there?

  9. Richard C (NZ) on May 2, 2016 at 4:45 pm said:

    Hansen et al (2005) have an estimate for planetary oceanic thermal inertia (as do others in the literature).

    Here’s a synopsis for the record. The article, and Hansen et al, make a crazy miss-attribution but the point is the lag time between planetary energy input change and atmospheric temperature response:

    Mostly citing the above-linked Science study by Hansen et al Earth’s thermal climate inertia is often quoted as being ’40 years’ [“10 -100 years” – Trenberth]. The study [Hansen et al 2005 – see link in article] says something quite different though. It offers a confidence range between 25 and 50 years – with 37.5 years as most likely value.


    >”a confidence range between 25 and 50 years – with 37.5 years as most likely value”

    I think this is a very realistic estimate, it is longer than some others e.g. Abdussamatov’s 20 yr ocean-only and 14+/-6 land+ocean, and certainly a lot longer than “time constant” experts from other fields (think Electrical Engineers and David Evans N-D Solar Model series – many heated arguments over the oceanic time constant).

    For example, solar change occurred circa 2005 and is continuing. Using Hansen et al’s lag time estimate, we should start looking for a temperature response in the atmosphere starting around 2030.

    In other words, the acid test for the alternative solar conjecture DOES NOT EVEN BEGIN until 2030 according to Hansen et al (2005), contrary to most IPCC solar specialists and thermodynamic illiterates like John Cook’s Skeptical Science blog who demand an almost instantaneous atmospheric temperature response to solar change.

    For what it’s worth (probably nothing), I’m inclined to start looking for a temperature response to solar change over the 2020s i.e. a lag time stating at 20 yrs gives 2005 + 20 = 2025, a little sooner than Hansen et al imply.

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