Archive for June, 2011

Tim C alerted me to page 252 of  the
Encyclopedia of world climatology
By John E. Oliver


The temperature range of the 20th century spans about 0.74 C. Of this, about 40% or 0.3 C
has excellent correlation with the sunspot time-integral. An equation has been derived
that calculates average global temperature based on the physical phenomena involved.
With inputs of accepted measurements (source web links are given) from government
agencies, it calculates the average global temperatures (agt) since 1895 with 88.4%
accuracy (87.9% if CO2 is assumed to have no influence). This research is presented at
Reference 1 and links given there.

Clouds radiate energy from the planet. Cloud elevation determines cloud temperature and
thus the energy rate. The analysis presented here determines that an increase in average
cloud altitude of only about 72 meters results in an increase of steady-state average global
temperature of 0.3 Celsius degrees. Svensmark2 has shown that more sunspots correlate
with fewer low-level (below 3 km) clouds. If there are fewer low-level clouds then
average cloud altitude must be higher, average cloud temperature lower, less energy
radiated from the planet and thus the planet warms.


Science in a free society

Posted: June 28, 2011 by tallbloke in climate, flames, Philosophy, Politics

Steve "Show us the data" McIntyre

Not long before climategate broke at the end of 2009, Steve McIntyre requested some assistance from readers at his blog Climate Audit. In the long running battle with the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia over access to the CRUTem dataset, attempts to obtain the information under the Freedom of Information Act had been thwarted by the CRU’s use of various exemption clauses. One of these was it’s claim that binding written agreements with other countries prevented them from disclosing it to non-academics. Steve asked readers to make FOIA requests for copies of these agreements.

I picked three countries, including Cuba, and duly sent off my request, which was refused some weeks later on the grounds that the agreements were themselves confidential. However, despite not wanting to share their confidential information with me, the CRU’s FOIA officer had no compunction in sharing my confidential information with the Norfolk Constabulary in the wake of the release of emails and data which became known as climategate. In the course of their investigation of the alleged ‘hacking’ the police contacted me and requested an interview, so they could ascertain if I may have been the ‘Hacker’ who obtained the emails and data.

Today, the Office of the Information Commissioner has ordered the CRU to release the requested CRUtem data to Jonathan Jones, a notable victory for common sense and open science. Steve McIntyre has the details here: (more…)

Reposted from the Cycles Research Institute’s Blog

A guest post from Ray Tomes

Over very long periods of time as ice ages come and go, it has been found that temperature leads atmospheric CO2 content by about 800 years. This seems to contradict the IPCC and other views that CO2 causes change in temperature. But we are looking at very different time scales with present changes, so perhaps things happen differently. I decided to examine this question.

The temperature data used is monthly global land-ocean temperature or GHCN, which is available from NOAA. The atmospheric CO2 data used is from Mauna Loa in Hawaii, the longest continuous record of CO2 also available monthly.

When wanting to find the causation when two series are both increasing over time, it is best to look at the rate of change of the variables as this will show clearly which one precedes the other. This first graph shows the rate of change of these two variables monthly over the period 1958 to 2009.

Rate of change of atmospheric CO2 content and land-ocean temperature

Rate of change of atmospheric CO2 content and land-ocean temperature


EU Carbon Credits via Bloomberg -BLUENEXT - BNS EUA 08-12 (phase 2) (PNXCSPT2:IND) - click graph for report

Here’s one to keep an eye on. The value of carbon credits on the European exchange has fallen 20% in ten days. Hopefully the graph to the right will update. WUWT contributor Ecotratas has blogged this at

This might be a good time for those who live in the E.U. to ask their pension fund managers how much exposure they have to this market. We know the BBC pension fund is heavily invested in green tech and carbon mitigation. I wonder how much they have in carbon credits.

The recent fall is partly due to the Greek government attempting to auction a million creds, of which only 6000 sold. Not a big confidence booster. How much more E.U. money will be frittered on propping up this failing market?

Update 28-6: The graph doesn’t update. The price rallied a dollar yesterday. Is this the dead cat bounce?

P.P. Kronberg R.V.E. Lovelace G. Lapenta S.A. Colgate
Draft version June 8, 2011
We present radio emission, polarization, and Faraday rotation maps of the radio jet of the galaxy
3C303. From this data we derive the magnetoplasma and electrodynamic parameters of this 50 kpc long
jet. For one component of this jet we obtain for the first time a direct determination of a galactic-scale
electric current (∼ 10e18 A) , and its direction − positive away from the AGN. Our analysis strongly
supports a model where the jet energy flow is mainly electromagnetic.

I’ve seen this page mentioned a couple of times recently and took a read. It presents a convincing case for the cause of the Younger Dryas cooling event and the extinction of megafauna around 11,000 years ago.
Don’t be too daunted by the length of the page, the post is repeated from halfway down. It’s a gripping read, and I learned stuff about pyroclastic geology I didn’t know.


secular sunspot

Figure 1

(see text)

Solar energy emission varies on all timescales right out to the change into a red dwarf, or so that particular theory goes.


Solar physicist and full time blog contributor Leif Svalgaard has for years had solar data on his ironing board. Now he has gone a step further than usual with the following statement.

Leif Svalgaard says:
June 18, 2011 at 6:51 am
The Far Ultraviolet [between EUV and UV] creates and maintains the ionosphere and solar tides move the ions during the day and night cycle giving rise to an varying electric current whose effect we can easily measure on the ground [it was discovered in 1722]. This effect is a very good measure of the FUV flux and follows the solar cycle very closely, e.g. slide 9 of , and shows no long-term drift of change.
Claus Froehlich notes: “The Ca II K index from Mt. Wilson observatory shows no secular trend of the minima since the start of these observations (Foukal et al., 2009; Bertello et al., 2010). This confirms also the result of a recent study of the long-term behaviour of solar like stars by Judge & Saar (2007), which shows that non-cycling stars have a HK index similar to the one observed on the sun during recent minima.” So, there is good evidence that the UV and TSI was not significantly lower during the Maunder Minimum.


On the very busy and interesting El Nino in relation to solar cycles thread Erl Happ made a comment about volcanos and El Nino which reminded me about a graph I did of the similarity between late C19th and late C20th solar slowdowns and the El Nino events occurring at those epochs. I ‘ve made a new pair of graphs to improve clarity and to include the timing of the two biggest volcanic events of the last 120 years.

Comparison of SST SSN and volcanic effects around 1883 and 1991

Here’s what Erl said:

Are Changes in the Earth’s Rotation Rate Externally Driven and Do
They Affect Climate?
Ian R. G. Wilson


Evidence is presented to show that the phases of two of the Earth’s major climate systems, the North
Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), are related to changes in the
Earth’s rotation rate. We find that the winter NAO index depends upon the time rate of change of the
Earth’s length of day (LOD). In addition, we find that there is a remarkable correlation between the years
where the phase of the PDO is most positive and the years where the deviation of the Earth’s LOD from its
long-term trend is greatest.

In order to prove that the variations in the NAO and PDO indices are caused by changes in the Earth’s
rotation rate, and not the other way around, we show that there is a strong correlation between the times of
maximum deviation of the Earth’s LOD from its long-term trend and the times where there are abrupt
asymmetries in the motion of the Sun about the CM of the Solar System.


Reposted from

Credit: Pravda.Ru

Mass awakening of volcanoes in the recent years has made scientists wreck their brains over the possible causes of such increased activity. Many geophysicists believe that such activity may increase because of the interaction of the Earth with other celestial bodies, such as the Sun or the giant planets Saturn and Jupiter.

Even the skeptics do not doubt that our planet is going through a peak of volcanic activity. Indeed, for the second consecutive year, these fire-breathing monsters are being felt in different regions of the planet. Even seemingly forever dormant volcanoes are coming to life. In addition, scientists expect the emergence of new volcanoes in places where they did not exist before.

The peak of volcanic activity also coincided with the activation of other processes in Earth’s crust that resulted in the succession of powerful earthquakes. Although they happened in places with the increased seismic activity, this is not very comforting. Since volcanoes and earthquakes are usually associated with one another, it becomes clear that something is happening to the planet.


Is this the real connection
between Milankovitch cycles and ice ages timing?
Guest post from Roy Martin

This informal study was prompted by the post entitled: “Ice ages driven by earth orientation changes not CO2” and the subsequent comments. A partial review of the literature shows that, in spite of the very extensive research done in the decades since Milankovitch first proposed the idea, there is still no clear understanding about just how the predicted variations in solar input can actually change the climate. The following is a back to basics attempt to clarify some of the issues, without recourse to sophisticated statistics or modelling, which arrives at a conclusion somewhat different from the common perceptions.

Figure 1.) This shows the composite of the variations in 650 N insolation, Benthic δ18O (location unknown), and global temperature inferred from the Vostock ice core data. Yes, the curves are a bit fuzzy because I got lazy and lifted them from an illustration in Wikipedia, but nicer looking plots would not change the conclusions drawn from them.


Andy Revkin over at dotearth, his more than lukewarm blog on the New York Times, has posted a critique of the announcement of a likely grand minimum in solar activity, written by NOAA solar scientist Douglas Biesecker. This page links the google doc and also a powerpoint slideshow.

Revkin says:

I’ll alert the group that came out with the prediction of a new minimum. This debate will need to play out in the peer-reviewed literature, of course.

And the Sun, in the end, will determine who’s right.

Well of course Andy, empirical data is the final arbiter.  And naturally, the issue can now be kicked into the long grass while we wait for the journals to get around to publishing the resulting to and fro.

The thrust of Biesecker’s argument is the uncertainty inherent in the extrapolation of trends from short datasets. Something his colleagues at NOAA who draw conclusions about other aspects of climate change should take careful note of.


Thunderbolts contributor ‘Persian Paladin’ offers this compendium of :

Researchers who have predicted a long term solar minimum or ‘solar hibernation’ and/or a new climate change to a period of long lasting cold weather based upon solar activity.

1. Dr. Habibullo I. Abdussamatov: Russian Academy of Scientists. Head of space research at the Pulkova Observatory, St. Petersburg.
Comment: RIA Novosti, August 25, 2006: “Khabibullo Abdusamatov said he and his colleagues had concluded that a period of global cooling similar to one seen in the late 17th century – when canals froze in the Netherlands and people had to leave their dwellings in Greenland – could start in 2012-2105 and reach its peak in 2055-2060….He said he believed the future climate change would have very serious consequences and that authorities should start preparing for them today….”

2. David Archibald. Summa Development Limited. (Australia).
From his paper: Archibald, D.C., (2006), Solar Cycles 24 and 25 and predicted climate response, Energy and Environment, Vol.17, No.1.
Comment from paper: “Based on a solar maxima of approximately 50 for solar cycles 24 and 25, a global temperature decline of 1.5C is predicted to 2020 equating to the experience of the Dalton Minimum.”

3. Dr. O.G.Badalyan, and Dr.V.N. Obridko, Institute of Terrestrial Magnestism. Russia, Dr.J.Sykora. Astronomical Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Slovak Republic.
From their paper: Balalyan, O.G., V.N. Obridko, and J. Sykora, (2000), Brightness of the coronal green line and prediction for activity cycles 23 and 24, Solar Physics, 199: pp.421-435.
Comment from paper: “ A slow increase in (intensity of coronal green line) in the current cycle 23 permits us to forecast a low-Wolf-number (number of sunspots) cycle 24 with the maximum W~50 at 2010-2011.” (Note: a 50 sunspot level is a Dalton class minimum)

4. Dr. B. P. Bonev, Dr. Kaloyan M. Penev, Dr. Stefano Sello.
From their paper: Bonev, B.P., et. al., (2004), Long term solar variability and the solar cycle in the 21st century, The Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 605, pp.L81-L84.
Comment from their paper: “…we conclude that the present epoch is at the onset of an upcoming local minimum in long term solar variability.”

5. John L. Casey, Director, Space and Science Research Center. Orlando, Florida
From the center’s research report: Casey, John L. (2008), The existence of ‘relational cycles’ of solar activity on a multi-decadal to centennial scale, as significant models of climate change on earth. SSRC Research Report 1-2008 – The RC Theory,
Comments from the research report:
“ As a result of the theory, it can be predicted that the next solar minimum may start within the next 3-14 years, and last 2-3 solar cycles or approximately 22-33 years. …It is estimated that there will be a global temperature drop on average between 1.0 and 1.5 degrees C, if not lower, at least on the scale of the Dalton Minimum. …This forecast next solar minimum will likely be accompanied by the coldest period globally for the past 200 years and as such, has the potential to result in world wide, agricultural, social, and economic disruption.”

After years of pooh poohing Theodor Landscheidt’s methods, work and predictions, mainstream solar physics has made an announcement of the strong possibility of a protracted solar minimum with consequences for Earth’s climate.

At a workshop in New Mexico today, the AAS brought the work of Livingstone and Penn into the spotlight and said the following, as reported by and posted on WUWT:

Some unusual solar readings, including fading sunspots and weakening magnetic activity near the poles, could be indications that our sun is preparing to be less active in the coming years.

The results of three separate studies seem to show that even as the current sunspot cycle swells toward the solar maximum, the sun could be heading into a more-dormant period, with activity during the next 11-year sunspot cycle greatly reduced or even eliminated.

The results of the new studies were announced today (June 14) at the annual meeting of the solar physics division of the American Astronomical Society, which is being held this week at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces.

Currently, the sun is in the midst of the period designated as Cycle 24 and is ramping up toward the cycle’s period of maximum activity. However, the recent findings indicate that the activity in the next 11-year solar cycle, Cycle 25, could be greatly reduced. In fact, some scientists are questioning whether this drop in activity could lead to a second Maunder Minimum, which was a 70-year period from 1645 to 1715 when the sun showed virtually no sunspots.

“We expected to see the start of the zonal flow for Cycle 25 by now, but we see no sign of it,” Hill said. “This indicates that the start of Cycle 25 may be delayed to 2021 or 2022, or may not happen at all.”

If the models prove accurate and the trends continue, the implications could be far-reaching.

“If we are right, this could be the last solar maximum we’ll see for a few decades,” Hill said. “That would affect everything from space exploration to Earth’s climate.”

The implications are enormous, but don’t come as a big surprise to readers of this blog or WUWT’s solar threads, where a group of planetary theorists, including Geoff Sharp M.A. Vukcevic, Patrick Geryl and myself have been trying to tell all who will listen that far from the big solar cycle 24 predicted by the mainstream physicists, the sun was likely going to quieten down for a long spell. Leif Svalgaard’s predictions for a solar cycle 25 bigger than the current low cycle, made as recently as a fortnight ago, now seem to be in doubt.

More detail on the proceedings at the New Mexico workshop here:


If there were any doubts about the link between low sunspot count, big isolated solar flares, Lunar perigee/apogee and heightened earthquake and volcano activity, events of the last months should have dispelled them. Magnitude 6.0 and 5.5 quakes near Christchurch NZ in the last 24 hours, plus the quakes and eruptions in Ethiopia, Chile, Kamchatka and Iceland are a reminder of the global aspect of the upsurge in seismic activity since the start of low solar cycle 24. Our sympathy goes out to all those affected by these frightening and destructively powerful natural events.

Some links to relevant posts on this blog:


I’ve been challenged a couple of times by Bob Tisdale to substantiate my claim that ENSO (El Nino Southern Oscillation) is related to the solar cycle. I have said that El Nino tends to start occurring on the declining side of the cycle, the big ones at or just after solar minimum.

I’ve prepared a couple of graphs to see if anyone else agrees with me. First the longerterm view, using the reconstruction of ENSO back to 1860:




While ALPHA and antimatter have been hitting the headlines, Kirkby’s experiment – Cosmic Leaving Outdoor Droplets, or CLOUD – is no less intriguing. It is very different, focused on explaining not our existence but our climate. “We are trying to understand what the connection is – if any – between a cosmic ray going through the atmosphere and a change in clouds,” Kirkby explains. A cosmic ray is a sub-atomic particle created by supernovae explosions somewhere in the Milky Way. He adds, perhaps stating the obvious, that “it is clearly not as simple as that”. There is no doubt that CLOUD could have important ramifications. If some of the theories Kirkby and his team are testing are proven, they could suggest that the natural, rather than man-made, component of current climate change is greater than previously thought.


Regular contributor Michele Casati has produced some superb graphics showing possible links between Solar-Planetary indices and terrestrial events such as earthquakes and volcanos. There is a wealth of information on these beautifully produced graphics, be sure to click for the high resolution versions, which will be updated in the future.

Grazia Michele!

Click for full size version