Archive for the ‘research’ Category

A portion of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation [image credit: R. Curry, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution @ Wikipedia]


This follows on quite well from our post yesterday about the Beaufort Gyre. Another attempted climate alarm fades away.
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A 30-year reconstruction of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation shows no decline, reports The Global Warming Policy Forum.

Abstract A decline in Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC) strength has been observed between 2004 and 2012 by the RAPID-MOCHA-WBTS (RAPID – Meridional Overturning Circulation and Heatflux Array – Western Boundary Time Series, hereafter RAPID array) with this weakened state of the AMOC persisting until 2017.

Climate model and paleo-oceanographic research suggests that the AMOC may have been declining for decades or even centuries before this; however direct observations are sparse prior to 2004, giving only “snapshots” of the overturning circulation. [Talkshop note: continues here].

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Arctic currents [image credit: Brn-Bld @ Wikipedia]


In climate terms any potential Beaufort Gyre effect – due to its ability to reverse its flow direction under certain conditions – is a known unknown, so an interesting one to speculate on.
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Freshwater is accumulating in the Arctic Ocean, says Phys.org.

The Beaufort Sea, which is the largest Arctic Ocean freshwater reservoir, has increased its freshwater content by 40% over the past two decades.

How and where this water will flow into the Atlantic Ocean is important for local and global ocean conditions.

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Pipistrelle bat [image credit: Drahkrub @ Wikipedia]


Their activity in the danger area seems to be mainly on nights with light winds and warm temperatures, but pinpointing the most relevant sites is not straightforward.
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One of the most abundant bats in Europe may be attracted to wind turbines, a new study shows.

The activity of common pipistrelle bats was monitored at 23 British wind farms and similar “control” locations close by without turbines, reports Phys.org.

Activity was around a third higher at turbines than at control locations, and two thirds of occasions with high activity were recorded at turbines rather than the controls.

The reasons for this are not clear.

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Coral reef [image credit: Toby Hudson / Wikipedia]


We can’t have effects preceding causes, so something seems to be amiss with the ‘human-caused warming’ dogma, if this study is correct.
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Studies of coral reefs in the Paracel Islands suggest that the South China Sea started warming up in 1825, at the start of the industrial revolution, according to a study by Chinese scientists.

That was the year the world’s first railway began operating in England and most ocean-going ships still used wind power, says The South China Morning Post.

Man-made carbon dioxide emissions could not fully explain such an early rise in the warming trend, they said in a peer-reviewed paper published in Quaternary Sciences on Friday.

The Paracel coral record “will fill in some important gaps in global high resolution marine environment records and help us better understand the history of environmental change in tropical waters”, said the researchers, led by Tao Shichen from the South China Sea Institute of Oceanology.

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Arctic Ocean


Something new for ice age theorists to consider, in particular the ‘sudden melting’. This sequence of three sketches illustrates the processes thought to be involved (see below for explanatory caption).
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The Arctic Ocean was covered by up to 900-meter-thick shelf ice and was filled entirely with freshwater at least twice in the last 150,000 years.

This surprising finding, reported in the latest issue of the journal Nature, is the result of long-term research by scientists from the Alfred Wegener Institute and the MARUM, says Phys.org.

With a detailed analysis of the composition of marine deposits, the scientists could demonstrate that the Arctic Ocean as well as the Nordic Seas did not contain sea-salt in at least two glacial periods.

Instead, these oceans were filled with large amounts of freshwater under a thick ice shield. This water could then be released into the North Atlantic in very short periods of time.

Such sudden freshwater inputs could explain rapid climate oscillations for which no satisfying explanation had been previously found.

Continued here.
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The caption to the sequence of three sketches says:

In glacial periods with low sea levels, exchange with the Pacific was halted and exchange with the North Atlantic was extremely reduced, while the Arctic basin was still receiving freshwater input. Exchange could only occur through narrow gateways in the Greenland-Scotland-Ridge. The sequence of three sketches shows (1) a period of freshening of the Arctic Ocean followed by (2) the release of freshwater to the North Atlantic, when saline water entered the Arctic Ocean and (3) sudden melting of the Arctic ice sheet upon contact with the relatively warm and salty Atlantic water. Credit: Alfred Wegener Institute/Martin Künsting

Image credit: ScienceDaily


This has echoes of the ice age dust/albedo theory – with no CO2 feedbacks – proposed by Ralph Ellis a few years ago. The article concludes: ‘The result thus has the potential to aid the understanding of the abrupt warming and cooling periods during the ice ages called Dansgaard/Oeschger events which bear the marks of climate tipping points.’

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Every late winter and early spring, huge dust storms swirled across the bare and frozen landscapes of Europe during the coldest periods of the latest ice age, says Phys.org.

These paleo-tempests, which are seldom matched in our modern climate frequently covered Western Europe in some of the thickest layers of ice-age dust found anywhere previously on Earth.

This is demonstrated by a series of new estimates of the sedimentation and accumulation rates of European loess layers obtained by Senior Research Scientist Denis-Didier Rousseau from Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris, France, and colleagues.

The work, which is published in Quaternary Science Reviews is part of the TiPES project on tipping points in the Earth system, coordinated by The University of Copenhagen.

In the study Denis-Didier Rousseau and colleagues reinterpreted layers in loess from Nussloch, Germany.

Loess is a fine-silt-sized earth type found all over the world. It mainly consists of aeolian sediments, which are materials transported by the wind from dry areas without vegetation such as deserts of any type, moraines, or dried-out river beds.

Within the aeolian sediments, darker layers of paleosol alternate within the loess layers. Every layer in the loess represents a shift in climatic conditions.

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Antarctic sea ice [image credit: BBC]


Warming, but not global – is the polar see-saw hypothesis in play here? In any case, it seems climate models are falling short again.
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Sea ice in the Southern Ocean defies predictions.

Observations show that ice extent in the Antarctic has been growing slightly, reports The Global Warming Policy Forum (GWPF).

Paul Holland, a climate modeler with the British Antarctic Survey, has spent the last ten years studying Antarctica’s sea ice and the Southern Ocean.

Lately, he has been scrutinizing the seasons of Antarctica and how fast the ice comes and goes.

Holland thinks these seasons may be a key to a conundrum: If Earth’s temperatures are getting warmer and sea ice in the Arctic has been shrinking fast, why then is sea ice in the Antarctic slowly increasing?

Opposite poles

Sea ice is simply frozen seawater. Although found only in the Arctic and the Antarctic, it influences Earth’s climate in big ways. Its bright surface reflects sunlight back into space. Icy areas absorb less solar energy and remain relatively cool.

When temperatures warm over time and more sea ice melts, fewer bright surfaces reflect sunlight back into space. The ice and exposed seawater absorb more solar energy and this causes more melting and more warming.

Scientists have been watching this feedback loop of warming and melting in the Arctic. To them, Arctic sea ice is a reliable indicator of a changing global climate. They pay the most attention in September when Arctic sea ice shrinks to its smallest extent each year. Measured by satellites since 1979, this minimum extent has been decreasing by as much as 13.7 percent per decade.

Antarctic sea ice, on the other hand, has not been considered a climate change indicator. Whereas Arctic sea ice mostly sits in the middle of land-locked ocean—which is more sensitive to sunlight and warming air—Antarctic sea ice surrounds land and is constantly exposed to high winds and waves.

According to climate models, rising global temperatures should cause sea ice in both regions to shrink. But observations show that ice extent in the Arctic has shrunk faster than models predicted, and in the Antarctic it has been growing slightly.

Researchers are looking much closer at Antarctica, saying, “Wait, what is going on down there?” Holland is one of those intrigued.

“The Antarctic case is as interesting as the Arctic case,” Holland said. “You can’t understand one without understanding the other.”

Minding the models

To Holland, the discrepancy calls parts of the climate models into question.

Continued here.

NASA pdf: https://cdn.earthdata.nasa.gov/conduit/upload/756/NASA_SOP_2014_unexpected_ice.pdf


Another ‘net zero’ stumbling block for climate-obsessed governments is investigated by researchers. This time it’s the question of where and how to keep all the hydrogen – assuming it can be produced from renewables on an industrial scale in the first place.
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Large-scale storage of hydrogen remains largely untested but is essential if hydrogen is to realize its potential to make a significant contribution to achieving net-zero emissions, says TechXplore.

A new perspectives paper sets out the key scientific challenges and knowledge gaps in large scale hydrogen storage in porous geological environments.

These underground hydrogen reservoirs could be used as energy storages to face high demand periods.

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Another pillar of ‘settled’ climate science trembles. It’s described as ‘one of the largest uncertainties faced by climate scientists.’ Is there a list of these uncertainties somewhere?
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The impact of atmospheric aerosols on clouds and climate may be different than previously thought, reports Phys.org.

That is the conclusion of cloud researcher Franziska Glassmeier from TU Delft. The results of her study will be published in Science on Friday, January 29th.

Cloud decks cover vast stretches of the subtropical oceans. They cool the planet because they reflect incoming sunlight back to space.

Air pollution in the form of aerosols—particles suspended in the atmosphere—can increase this cooling effect because it makes clouds brighter.

The cooling effect of pollution offsets part of the warming effect of greenhouse gases. How much exactly, is one of the largest uncertainties faced by climate scientists.

Ship tracks

A striking illustration of clouds becoming brighter as a result of aerosols, is provided by shipping emissions in the form of “ship tracks.” These are visible as bright lines within a cloud deck that reveal the paths of polluting ships that travel beneath the clouds.

“Such ship tracks are a good example of how aerosol effects on clouds are traditionally thought of, and of how they are still represented in most climate models,” says Glassmeier.

But according to the cloud researcher, ship tracks do not tell the whole story.

Continued here.


So the Earth is, or was, a kind of giant balloon. We know seafloor spreading is still ongoing, and can affect global sea levels on historical timescales.
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Ancient fragments of Earth’s crust acted as ‘seeds’ for new crust to grow from, says LiveScience.

Around 3 billion years ago, Earth’s crust ballooned during a massive growth spurt, geoscientists have found.

At that time, just 1.5 billion years after Earth formed, the mantle — the layer of silicate rock between the crust and the outer core that was more active in the past — heated up, causing magma from that layer to ooze into fragments of older crust above it.

Those fragments acted as “seeds” for the growth of modern-day continents.

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This quote from the report stood out: ‘there are long-lasting periods of strong and weak solar activity, which is also reflected in the climate on Earth.’ Worth noting as we proceed through a period of weak activity right now.
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An international team of researchers led by ETH Zurich has reconstructed solar activity back to the year 969 using measurements of radioactive carbon in tree rings, reports Phys.org.

Those results help scientists to better understand the dynamics of the sun and allow more precise dating of organic materials using the C14 method.

What goes on in the sun can only be observed indirectly. Sunspots, for instance, reveal the degree of solar activity—the more sunspots are visible on the surface of the sun, the more active is our central star deep inside.

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Climate obsessives will have to find something else to try and bother the long-suffering public with.
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The dairy industry in the United States is massive, says AgriMarketing .

It supplies dietary requirements to the vast majority of the population.

This same industry also contributes approximately 1.58 percent of the country’s total greenhouse gas emissions.

A commonly suggested solution to reduce greenhouse gas output has been to reduce or eliminate this industry in favor of plant production.

A team of Virginia Tech researchers wanted to uncover the actual impact that these cows have on the environment.

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Clouds on Mars [image credit: NASA]


Regarding the Earth’s equivalent Chandler wobble, Wikipedia says: ‘Since the Chandler wobble should die down in a matter of decades or centuries, there must be influences that continually re-excite it.’ Presumably the same will apply to Mars, but as relevant observations are all fairly recent no conclusion can be reached at present.
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Spacecraft find that Mars oscillates 10 centimeters off its axis of rotation, says Eos.

In a first for a solar system body other than Earth, scientists have detected the Chandler wobble on Mars, a repeated movement of the poles on the surface of the planet away from its average axis of rotation.

The Chandler wobble arises when a rotating body isn’t a perfect sphere. This imbalance affects its spin.

The result is a wiggle resembling that of a swaying top as it loses speed, rather than the smooth spin of a perfectly balanced globe.

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In the Maldives


Just as the late Nils-Axel Mörner, a lifelong sea levels researcher, explained in an interview about two years ago. Let’s hope the climate miserablists now give up on their ‘drowning islands’ nonsense.
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New research says hundreds of islands in the Pacific are growing in land size, even as climate change-related sea level rises threaten the region, says ABC News Australia.

Scientists at the University of Auckland found atolls in the Pacific nations of Marshall Islands and Kiribati, as well as the Maldives archipelago in the Indian Ocean, have grown up to 8 per cent in size over the past six decades despite sea level rise.

They say their research could help climate-vulnerable nations adapt to global warming in the future.

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Drought in Europe


Climate alarmists would love to ‘get rid of the Medieval Warm Period’ (to quote a certain email), but it refuses to go away. Interestingly, the period under discussion here (1302-2018, or ~716 years) equates to four José cycles.
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The transition from the Medieval Warm Period to the Little Ice Age was apparently accompanied by severe droughts between 1302 and 1307 in Europe; this preceded the wet and cold phase of the 1310s and the resulting great famine of 1315-21, says Eurasia Review.

In the journal Climate of the Past, researchers from the Leibniz Institutes for the History and Culture of Eastern Europe (GWZO) and Tropospheric Research (TROPOS) write that the 1302-07 weather patterns display similarities to the 2018 weather anomaly, in which continental Europe experienced exceptional heat and drought.

Both the medieval and recent weather patterns resemble the stable weather patterns that have occurred more frequently since the 1980s due to the increased warming of the Arctic.

According to the Leibniz researchers’ hypothesis based on their comparison of the 1302-07 and 2018 droughts, transitional phases in the climate are always characterized by periods of low variability, in which weather patterns remain stable for a long time.

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Bring it on. Average August temperature in London is 22C, and much of the UK is at cooler higher latitudes than London is. A long way to go to even get close to Mediterranean-style summers, and some ‘heat deaths’ could well be due to lack of air conditioning as much as the weather itself. Deaths from cold weather are more the issue in the UK. Researchers today like to assume that temperature trends go on forever in one direction, but forget the ‘experts’ were forecasting drastic global cooling back in the 1970s, after 30 years of lack of warming. A 40 year study period is short for claiming trends, hence words like ‘could’ and ‘projected’ to hedge their bets.
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The U.K. could be facing a future of extreme heatwaves according to a new study in which scientists mapped almost 40 years’ worth of trends to project what lies ahead, says Phys.org.

The study, published in Environmental Research Letters, draws on datasets from the Met Office’s U.K. Climate Projections, specifically UKCP18, which contains global climate model projections and simulations from around the world, as well as high resolution climate model projections on a local and regional scale for the U.K. and Europe.

Between 2016 and 2019 there were more than 3,400 excess deaths in England as a result of heatwaves.

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Credit: earth.com


Greetings Earthlings, or should we say ‘habitable-zone-dwelling asteroid dodgers’? We even have the right amount of atmosphere — not too little (like Mars) or too much (like Venus), and the essential oxygen.
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Pure chance is the reason that Planet Earth has stayed habitable for billions of years.

A new study has found that it’s nothing more than good luck that has kept our world full of life, reports I-news.

Scientists at the University of Southampton have carried out a mass simulation of climate evolution of 100,000 randomly generated planets.

Each planet was simulated 100 times with random climate-altering events occurring each time in order to see if habitable life could be sustained for three billion years like on Earth.

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Topographic map of Greenland


We’re told ‘The North Atlantic region is awash with geothermal activity’. Any day now we should be hearing how a few extra molecules of (human-caused) CO2 make the Earth’s innards hotter than they used to be. Or maybe we won’t.
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A team of researchers understands more about the melting of the Greenland ice sheet, says SciTech Daily.

They discovered a flow of hot rocks, known as a mantle plume, rising from the core-mantle boundary beneath central Greenland that melts the ice from below.

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Typical electric car set-up


Researchers cite lithium and cobalt production as the most likely to fall short of expected demand levels in the next few years, if EV take-up grows as desired or mandated by many political leaders. In short, new discoveries of supplies will be required if present battery technology is to be maintained. Failing that, ‘net zero’ may need a plan B.
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As the world shifts to electric vehicles to reduce climate change, it is important to quantify future demands for key battery materials, says TechXplore.

In a new report, Chengjian Xu, Bernhard Steubing and a research team at the Leiden University, Netherlands and the Argonne National Laboratory in the U.S. showed how the demands of a lithium, nickel, cobalt and manganese oxide dominated battery will increase by many factors between 2020 to 2050.

As a result, supply chains for lithium, cobalt and nickel will require significant expansion and likely additional resource discovery.

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Yet another target for climate miserablists


Climate obsessives want to award themselves the authority to micromanage every aspect of people’s lives, using the feeble excuse of carbon dioxide, a harmless trace gas vital to plants and other vegetation. This sort of absurdity seems to be mushrooming by the day. Merry Christmas!
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Around 60% of the climate impact of foods can come from cooking, according to new research, says Energy Live News.

Cooking the traditional Christmas dinner could have a major effect on the environment.

That’s according to new research by the Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Food Policy, City, University of London, Dr Christian Reynolds, who claims up to 60% of the climate impact of foods can come from cooking.

Dr Reynolds’ research shows that a reduction in meat consumption could make the traditional roast more sustainable.

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