Sunspot Activity is an Important Variable in Climate Forecasting
There’s a consensus in the global warming community. And it says that global warming exists. But there’s a problem now. The sun, the source of our planet’s warmth, is throwing the global warming people a curve ball. The sun may be getting cooler. And, being the source of our warmth, our planet may now be getting cooler. Amidst all this rampant global warming (see Scientists predict rare ‘hibernation’ of sunspots by Kerry Sheridan, AFP, posted 6/14/2011 on Yahoo! News).
According to three studies released in the United States on Tuesday, experts believe the familiar sunspot cycle may be shutting down and heading toward a pattern of inactivity unseen since the 17th century…and may contribute to climate change…”
Sunspot activity may contribute to climate change? Interesting. Because I never heard Al Gore say that. He said man was causing climate change. Warning that man’s carbon footprint on the planet would melt the polar ice caps and flood coastal areas. By the way, after he said this he bought a beach house. A mansion, really. In a coastal area. How brave of him.
Experts are now probing whether this period of inactivity could be a second Maunder Minimum, which was a 70-year period when hardly any sunspots were observed between 1645-1715, a period known as the “Little Ice Age.”
Now this is even more interesting. Because the global warming people told us that unless we took action right now the planet was doomed. Now we may save the planet by doing just that. Nothing. Scientists are saying we may have a cooling period of solar activity. Just like that during the Little Ice Age. Climate change caused by the sun. Now that’s something you can’t blame man for. Not even the Republicans.
The temperature change associated with any reduction in sunspot activity would likely be minimal and may not be enough to offset the impact of greenhouse gases on global warming, according to scientists who have published recent papers on the topic.
Even though the last time there was solar activity like this was one of the coldest periods known to man it probably means nothing now. At least according to their computer models. Those remarkable predicting machines. That somehow failed to predict this solar activity. Well, as long as solar activity isn’t a big climate variable.
If the cycle were to stop or slow down, the small fluctuation in temperature would do the same, eliminating the slightly cooler effect of a solar minimum compared to the warmer solar maximum. The phenomenon was witnessed during the descending phase of the last solar cycle.
This “cancelled part of the greenhouse gas warming of the period 2000-2008, causing the net global surface temperature to remain approximately flat — and leading to the big debate of why the Earth hadn’t (been) warming in the past decade,” Lean, who was not involved in the three studies presented, said in an email to AFP.
Wait a minute. If it cancelled out a decade of global warming it must be a pretty darn big climate variable. It’s so powerful it held global warming at bay for about a decade. Single-handedly preventing all sorts of disasters. And there were a lot of them predicted since the Nineties (and earlier). Very specific disasters. And they were all wrong. Because they didn’t include what appears to be a pretty important variable. A variable so important that it trumped every other variable in their computer models. Which doesn’t say much for their predicting models. Or the predictability of climate.
“A new Maunder-type solar activity minimum cannot offset the global warming caused by human greenhouse gas emissions,” wrote authors Georg Feulner and Stefan Rahmstorf, noting that forecasts by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have found a range of 3.7 Celsius to 4.5 Celsius rise by this century’s end compared to the latter half of the 20th century.
“Moreover, any offset of global warming due to a grand minimum of solar activity would be merely a temporary effect, since the distinct solar minima during the last millennium typically lasted for only several decades or a century at most.”
Funny. When sunspot activity correlates to similar activity during the Little Ice Age they use the word ‘may’. Here they use the word ‘cannot’. There is no way that a reduction in sunspot activity can stop manmade global warming. Even though they got it wrong in the 2000-2008 period. Because their models didn’t predict the cooling effect of a reduction in sunspot activity. Nor did they predict a reduction in sunspot activity. But despite these misses, their other predictions hold. The planet is warming. Because of man. Even if we may have to wait another 100 years for those temperatures to get where the models said they’d be already.
The Maunder Minimum and the Little Ice Age
So did the Maunder Minimum cause the Little Ice Age? According to some of the best climate ‘scientists’, it didn’t. Because although a Maunder-type solar activity minimum held off devastating global warming from 2000-2008, there isn’t really a connection between an even bigger Maunder-type solar activity minimum (the Maunder Minimum itself) and the Little Ice Age (see Scientists see sunspot “hibernation” but no Ice Age by Deborah Zabarenko posted 6/15/2011 on Reuters).
They also wondered whether this possible slowdown, or even a long cessation of sunspot activity, indicates an upcoming return of the Maunder Minimum, a 70-year sunspot drought seen from 1645-1715…
They had no answer as to whether this might be true, and said nothing about whether the Maunder Minimum — named for astronomer E.H. Maunder — was related to a long cold period in Europe and other parts of the Northern Hemisphere known as the Little Ice Age.
How strong a connection is there between a Little Ice Age and a Maunder Minimum? “Not as strong a connection as people would like to believe,” Hill said by phone.
So the Maunder Minimum did not cause the Little Ice Age. And we know this why?
“In my opinion, it is a huge leap … to an abrupt global cooling, since the connections between solar activity and climate are still very poorly understood,” he said in an e-mail.
Because we don’t understand the connections between solar activity and climate? That’s your reason for saying there’s no connection between the two? Because you don’t know? Of course, if you don’t know, there could very well be a connection between the two. Look, we know there’s a connection. If the sun burned out the earth would freeze and all life would die. Even with manmade global warming. The sun is that important to the earth. If you don’t have that factored into your computer models there’s something wrong with your models.
A Cooling Sun will Cool the Planet
Wait a tic. Apparently there isn’t a consensus on this global warming thing after all. While some poo poo solar activity’s affect on climate, others see a connection. They see the correlation between the coldest period of the Little Ice Age and the Maunder Minimum (see Lack of sunspots may have aided ‘little ice age’ by Charles Q. Choi posted 6/6/2011 on MSNBC).
From the 1500s to the 1800s, much of Europe and North America were plunged into what came to be called the little ice age. The coolest part of this cold spell coincided with a 75-year period beginning in 1645 when astronomers detected almost no sunspots on the sun, a time now referred to as the Maunder Minimum.
There’s no connection between the Little Ice Age and the Maunder Minimum per the global warming ‘scientists’. Yes, the coldest part of that ice age was during the Maunder Minimum. But isn’t that just a coincidence?
Now scientists suggest there might have been fewer intensely bright spots known as faculae on the sun as well during that time, potentially reducing its brightness enough to cool the Earth.
The dip in the number of faculae in the 17th century might have dimmed the sun by just 0.2 percent, which may have been enough to help trigger a brief, radical climate shift on Earth, researcher Peter Foukal, a solar physicist at research company Heliophysics in Nahant, Mass., told LiveScience.
“The sun may have dimmed more than we thought,” Foukal said.
A dimming of the sun may have caused a brief, radical climate shift during the Little Ice Age? Really? Wow. That’s sort of the exact opposite of what the global warming ‘scientists’ said. Being that the sun is the source of our warmth, it makes sense. And the dimming may have been even dimmer than we once thought. So it’s looking more and more like the Maunder Minimum may have caused the Little Ice Age.
Foukal emphasized this dimming might not have been the only or even main cause of the cooling seen during the little ice age. “There were also strong volcanic effects involved — something like 17 huge volcanic eruptions then,” he said.
Foukal also cautioned these findings regarding the sun did not apply to modern-day global warming. “Increased solar activity would not have anything to do with the global warming seen in the last 100 years,” he explained.
Now I’m confused. Volcanic eruptions send ash, carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere. So do coal-fired power plants. Yet volcanoes cool the planet. While burning coal warms the planet. How can that be? I guess anything is possible in the world of global warming and climate change. Such as how the warming mechanism for the last 100 years can also been the cooling mechanism during the Little Ice Age.
There is no such thing as ‘Consensus’ in Science
We hear over and over again that only man is causing global warming. But there’s been global warming before man and his Industrial Revolution polluted the planet. The earth warmed after each ice age. And the earth warmed after the Little Ice Age.
And it’s looking like the Little Ice Age was caused by a decrease in sunspot activity. Which may be happening again. Which means the planet may start a cooling period. During the height of global warming. Which, if true, further lends credence to the claim that global warming is a hoax. Created by man. For political purposes. Money. Carbon permits. Carbon trading. It’s all about the money. As it always is.
This is the problem with scientific consensus. There is no such thing. A consensus is political. Not scientific. Because science is not about the money. But politics is.