by E. W. Wolf, November 4, 2019 in WUWT
An analysis of air up to 2 million years old, trapped in Antarctic ice, shows that a major shift in the periodicity of glacial cycles was probably not caused by a long-term decline in atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide.
During the past 2.6 million years, Earth’s climate has alternated between warm periods known as interglacials, when conditions were similar to those of today, and cold glacials, when ice sheets spread across North America and northern Europe. Before about 1 million years ago, the warm periods recurred every 40,000 years, but after that, the return period lengthened to an average of about 100,000 years. It has often been suggested that a decline in the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide was responsible for this fundamental change. Writing in Nature, Yan et al.1 report the first direct measurements of atmospheric CO2 concentrations from more than 1 million years ago. Their data show that, although CO2levels during glacials stayed well above the lows that occurred during the deep glacials of the past 800,000 years, the maximum CO2 concentrations during interglacials did not decline. The explanation for the change must therefore lie elsewhere.
Understanding what caused the shift in periodicity, known as the mid-Pleistocene transition (MPT), is one of the great challenges of palaeoclimate science. The 40,000-year periodicity that dominated until about 1 million years ago is easily explained, because the tilt of Earth’s spin axis relative to its orbit around the Sun varies between 22.1° and 24.5° with the same period. In other words, before the MPT, low tilts led to cooler summers that promoted the growth and preservation of ice sheets.
But after the MPT, glacial cycles lasted for two to three tilt cycles. Because the pattern of variation in Earth’s orbit and tilt remained unchanged, this implies that the energy needed to lose ice sheets2 had increased. One prominent explanation3 is that atmospheric levels of CO2 were declining, and eventually crossed a threshold value below which the net cooling effect of the decline allowed ice sheets to persist and grow larger.
by Zharkova et al., June 24, 2019 in ScientificReportsNature
Recently discovered long-term oscillations of the solar background magnetic field associated with double dynamo waves generated in inner and outer layers of the Sun indicate that the solar activity is heading in the next three decades (2019–2055) to a Modern grand minimum similar to Maunder one. On the other hand, a reconstruction of solar total irradiance suggests that since the Maunder minimum there is an increase in the cycle-averaged total solar irradiance (TSI) by a value of about 1–1.5 Wm−2 closely correlated with an increase of the baseline (average) terrestrial temperature. In order to understand these two opposite trends, we calculated the double dynamo summary curve of magnetic field variations backward one hundred thousand years allowing us to confirm strong oscillations of solar activity in regular (11 year) and recently reported grand (350–400 year) solar cycles caused by actions of the double solar dynamo. In addition, oscillations of the baseline (zero-line) of magnetic field with a period of 1950 ± 95 years (a super-grand cycle) are discovered by applying a running averaging filter to suppress large-scale oscillations of 11 year cycles. Latest minimum of the baseline oscillations is found to coincide with the grand solar minimum (the Maunder minimum) occurred before the current super-grand cycle start. Since then the baseline magnitude became slowly increasing towards its maximum at 2600 to be followed by its decrease and minimum at ~3700. These oscillations of the baseline solar magnetic field are found associated with a long-term solar inertial motion about the barycenter of the solar system and closely linked to an increase of solar irradiance and terrestrial temperature in the past two centuries. This trend is anticipated to continue in the next six centuries that can lead to a further natural increase of the terrestrial temperature by more than 2.5 °C by 2600.
by A. Watts, June 21, 2019 in WUWT
Are we in a solar grand minimum? We’ve seen this before, but now predictions are for an extremely weak solar cycle ahead.
Today is the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere. The sun has been without a single observable sunspot now for over a month – 33 days according to NOAA and SIDC data.
Daily observations of the number of sunspots since 1 January 1977 according to Solar Influences Data Analysis Center (SIDC). The thin blue line indicates the daily sunspot number, while the dark blue line indicates the running annual average. The recent low sunspot activity is clearly reflected in the recent low values for the total solar irradiance. Compare also with the geomagnetic Ap-index. Data source: WDC-SILSO, Royal Observatory of Belgium, Brussels. Last day shown: 31 May 2019. Last diagram update: 1 June 2019 . [Courtesy climate4you.com]
by Jim Steele, May 28, 2018 in WUWT
The globally averaged temperature rose 1.5°F from 1880 to today. Various narratives suggest the rise since 1950 was driven by increasing concentrations of CO2. The rising temperature before 1950 was considered natural. Since 1990, Arctic temperatures rose 2 to 3 times faster than the global average. So, are rapidly rising Arctic temperatures evidence of an impending climate crisis?
Astute students of climate history recall rapid Arctic warming has happened often and naturally. During the last Ice Age when CO2 concentrations were just half of today’s, 25 abrupt warming events happened. Arctic temperatures rose 9°F, and sometimes as much as 14°F in just 40 years. These rapid warming episodes are now called Dansgaard–Oeschger events (D-O events) in honor of the researchers who first detected them in Greenland’s ice cores. These D-O episodes affected global climate, changed ocean currents along California’s coast and altered the range of European forests.
What caused such abrupt warming? Basic physics dismisses changes in greenhouse gases or solar insolation because neither radiative effect induces such rapid warming. The most reasonable explanation suggests episodes of ventilating heat, that had accumulated in the Arctic Ocean, rapidly warmed the air.
by S. Kravstov et al. 2018, in Nature
Reliability of future global warming projections depends on how well climate models reproduce the observed climate change over the twentieth century. In this regard, deviations of the model-simulated climate change from observations, such as a recent “pause” in global warming, have received considerable attention. Such decadal mismatches between model-simulated and observed climate trends are common throughout the twentieth century, and their causes are still poorly understood. Here we show that the discrepancies between the observed and simulated climate variability on decadal and longer timescale have a coherent structure suggestive of a pronounced Global Multidecadal Oscillation. Surface temperature anomalies associated with this variability originate in the North Atlantic and spread out to the Pacific and Southern oceans and Antarctica, with Arctic following suit in about 25–35 years. While climate models exhibit various levels of decadal climate variability and some regional similarities to observations, none of the model simulations considered match the observed signal in terms of its magnitude, spatial patterns and their sequential time development. These results highlight a substantial degree of uncertainty in our interpretation of the observed climate change using current generation of climate models.
by Renee Hannon, December 17, 2018 in WUWT
Wavelet analyses of modern global temperature anomalies provides an excellent visualization tool of temperature signal characteristics and patterns over the past 150 years. Scafetta recognized key temperature oscillations of about 9, 20 and 60-years using power spectra of global surface temperature anomalies. There has been much discussion about the 60-year quasi-oscillation both in WUWT and publications.
Detrending the temperature time series and removing the 60-year underlying trend enables insights into the interplay of interannual and decadal scales. Wavelet analyses reveals these periodic signals have distinguished patterns and characteristics that repeat over time suggesting natural external and internal influences. Interannual wavelet patterns that consist of 9-year and 3 to 5-year quasi-oscillations are repeated and dominate over 70% of the instrumental record. The 3 to 5-year discontinuous breakouts are coincident to El Niño and La Niña events of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). A period of quiescence from 1925 to 1960 is devoid of most wavelet signals suggesting different or transitional climate processes.
by Uzbek, 11 septembre 2018 in Climat,Environnemen,Energie
Trois nouvelle études publiées en août 2018 apportent un éclairage nouveau sur le cycle du carbone. La première, publiée dans la revue Nature  montre que le taux de croissance du CO2 dans l’atmosphère est très sensible aux changements observés dans le stockage de l’eau terrestre. Les deux autres publiées respectivement dans Nature Geoscience  et dans Nature  montrent une tendance à l’augmentation du puits de carbone terrestre grâce notamment aux modifications de l’usage des sols sous l’influence des activités humaines.
by Anthony Watts, September 18, 2018 in WUWT
Godfrey Dack writes in with this:
Everyone will be familiar with the difficulty of listening to a conversation held with a friend in a crowded room with many other conversations going on at the same time. So it is with many fields of scientific investigation where it is difficult to tease a particular trend out from masses of data. In the first case, we could call the friend’s conversation ‘The Signal’, and the background conversations ‘The Noise’.
In looking at climate data, trends (the signal) can be graphically represented by a (generally) smooth curve, usually flanked by a range of experimentally predicted or actually measured values (the noise). Joining up every point on a graph of such data would give a jagged line which could be thought of as a combination of many alternating functions over a wide range of frequencies.
by Donald Rapp, September 8, 218 in Climate Etc.
On the terminations of Ice Ages.
Terminations occur on solar up-lobes
There is no doubt that there is merit in the widely accepted Milankovitch theory that Ice Ages and their terminations are controlled by solar input to the NH in mid-summer. It is also clear that relying on the solar input to the NH alone, does not adequately account for the occurrence of terminations of Ice Ages. The variation of solar input to high latitudes is modulated by precession, which produces continual up-lobes and down-lobes in solar input with a ~ 22,000-year period. While every termination is accompanied by the 5,500-year rising portion of an up-lobe in the solar input to high latitudes, many strong up-lobes do not produce a termination….
by H.J. Lüdecke and C.O. Weiss, April 27, 2017 in TheOpenAtm.Sci.J.
The Sun as climate driver is repeatedly discussed in the literature but proofs are often weak. In order to elucidate the solar influence, we have used a large number of temperature proxies worldwide to construct a global temperature mean G7 over the last 2000 years. The Fourier spectrum of G7 shows the strongest components as ~1000-, ~460-, and ~190 – year periods whereas other cycles of the individual proxies are considerably weaker. The G7 temperature extrema coincide with the Roman, medieval, and present optima as well as the well-known minimum of AD 1450 during the Little Ice Age. We have constructed by reverse Fourier transform a representation of G7 using only these three sine functions, which shows a remarkable Pearson correlation of 0.84 with the 31-year running average of G7. The three cycles are also found dominant in the production rates of the solar-induced cosmogenic nuclides 14C and 10Be, most strongly in the ~190 – year period being known as the De Vries/Suess cycle. By wavelet analysis, a new proof has been provided that at least the ~190-year climate cycle has a solar origin.
by Ralph Ellis, August 2018 in FriendsofScience
Why do ice ages occur? Surprisingly, even after many decades of paleoclimatic research we simply do not know for sure. Most scientists will agree that ice age cycles have something to do with precession: the slow wobble of the axis of the Earth. The ancient Egyptians and Greeks knew of precession and called it the Great Year, because it gives warm and cool seasons over its approximate 23,000-year cycle. But there is a problem with invoking the Great Year as the regulator of ice ages, because we should really get an interglacial warming every 23,000 years or so. And we don’t – they only happen every fourth or fifth Great Year.
But why should the global climate give a selective response to orbital warming and cooling? (Called ‘forcing’ in the climate trade.) This is one of the great unknowns of modern science.
by Tony Heller, from Mc. Hogg, August 24,2018 in TheDeplorableClimateScienceBlog
Climate scientists acknowledge that CO2 follows rather than leads temperature, but they insist that feedback loops drive the transitions from glacial to interglacial conditions.
by Jo Nova, July 19, 2018 in JoNova
Remarkably, some Japanese families kept weather record diaries in the 1700 and 1800s, and some for as long as 150 years. The connections they reveal are tantalizing but so incomplete. We are trying to fish out primitive signals from murky water. The Sun turns around on itself every 27 days, so these researchers are looking for repeating patterns in lightning that fit, but the poles of the sun spin slower than the equator and the sun spots can take their own time. Hence, it’s not a neat “27″ days.
During periods of high solar activity, they found regular peaks in lightning activity with the right timing, from May to September when the cold Siberian air mass is not so influential.
Other studies we’ve discussed here have investigated long solar cycles on the 11 year or 200 year scales ….
by NASA, July 18, 2018 in SpaceWeather
The sun has been blank for 21 days–3 whole weeks without sunspots. To find an equal number of consecutive spotless days in the historical record, you have to go back to July-August 2009 when the sun was emerging from an unusually deep solar minimum. Solar minimum, welcome back!
by Willis Eschenbach, July 16, 2018 in WUWT
Sometimes a chance comment sets off a whole chain of investigation. Somewhere recently, in passing I noted the idea of the slope of the temperature gradient across the Pacific along the Equator. So I decided to take a look at it. Here is the area that I examined.
I’ve written about this temperature gradient before, in a post called The Tao of El Nino. If you take time to read that post, this one will make more sense. …
by David Archibald, July 6, 2018 in WUWT
We have only 300 years-odd of detailed solar observations with telescopes, half that of magnetic records, half again in the radio spectrum and less than that for most modern instrument records (and 12 years of Watts Up With That to interpret it). So as the months pass our knowledge of solar activity is still growing appreciably. The evidence points to a major transition of activity in 2006 which has returned us to the solar conditions of the 19thcentury. 19th century-type climate is expected to follow.
Figure 1: F10.7 Flux 1948 to 2018
by Javier, July 5, 2018 in WUWT
Two solar physicists, Robert Leamon from NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and Scott McIntosh from the High Altitude Observatory at Boulder, CO, have made an interesting observation that links changes in solar activity with changes in the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO).
As they reported at the AGU 2017 Fall Meeting, the termination of the solar magnetic activity bands at the solar equator that mark the end of the Hale cycle coincides since the 1960’s with a shift from El Niño to La Niña conditions in the Pacific.
See also here
by Dr. Tim Ball, August 31, 2014 in WUWT
Lack of information is a major problem in reconstructing and understanding climate and climate mechanisms. H.H.Lamb gave it as his reason for creating the Climatic Research Unit (CRU).
Notice he is talking about “the facts”, which includes data and other measures. Chief among the other measures are accurate chronologies, which is why he discusses dates and dating methods at some length in Volume 2 of his Climate, Present, Past and Future.
Lamb also divided climate studies into three major areas based on time and method. The secular or instrumental period covers at most 100 years. Few stations are longer and almost all are in Western Europe or eastern North America. The historical period includes the recorded works of humans and covers at most 3000 years. The biologic/geologic record covers the remainder of time. The degree of accuracy diminishes both in measures, such as temperature and precision of dates, as you go back in time. One tragedy of the “hockey stick” rarely discussed was that it misused and demeaned the value of one of the few measures that transcends two or three of these divisions.
by Anthony Watts, May 23, 2018 in WUWT
Have you been keeping an eye on Sol lately? One of the top astronomy stories for 2018 may be what’s not happening, and how inactive our host star has become.
The strange tale of Solar Cycle #24 is ending with an expected whimper: as of May 8th, the Earthward face of the Sun had been spotless for 73 out of 128 days thus far for 2018, or more than 57% of the time. This wasn’t entirely unexpected, as the solar minimum between solar cycle #23 and #24 saw 260 spotless days in 2009 – the most recorded in a single year since 1913.
Cycle #24 got off to a late and sputtering start, and though it produced some whopper sunspots reminiscent of the Sol we knew and loved on 20th century cycles past, it was a chronic under-performer overall. Mid-2018 may see the end of cycle #24 and the start of Cycle #25… or will it?
by Open Mind, April 29, 2018
Lately I’ve been looking closely at sea level time series from the east coast of the U.S. Available stations are marked here with red dots (…)
by F. Bosse and Prof. F. Vahrenholt, April 28, 2018 in NoTricksZone
As the current solar cycle nears an end, it will go down as the weakest in close to 200 years. And as inhabitants of the northern hemisphere dig themselves out of an especially icy and snowy winter and Arctic sea ice rebounds, it may all be in part linked to low solar activity as many scientific studies have long suggested.
Figure 1: The current solar cycle no. 24 (red) compared to the mean of the previous 23 recorded solar cycles (blue) and the similar solar cycle no. 5 (black)
by Javier, April 26, 2018 in WUWT
It is a well-known feature of climate change that since 1850 multiple climate datasets present a ~ 60-year oscillation. I recently wrote about it in the 7th chapter of my Nature Unbound series. This oscillation is present in the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), Arctic Oscillation (AO), North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), Length of Day (LOD), and Global (GST) and Northern Hemisphere (NHT) temperatures, with different lags.
To me this oscillation is not a cycle because prior to 1850 it had a more variable period and it is not well identified in LIA records. Since the origin of this oscillation is unknown, models have a hard time reproducing it and it is all but ignored by the IPCC. It is a big oscillation with an amplitude of ± 0.3 °C in NHT (0.1-0.2°C in GST; figure 2). While the long-term temperature trend is unaffected by it, there is a large effect on the 30-year trends. If this oscillation is considered, most of the climate alarmism vaporizes.
by A. Watts, April 12, 2018 in WUWT
Evidence of a Cycle 25 sunspot found
In our previous post: Solar activity crashes – the Sun looks like a cueball,
Our resident solar physicist, Dr. Leif Svalgaard commented and provided a link to something reported by his colleagues, something that likely would not have been possible without the fantastic solar observations of NASA’s Solar Dynamic Observeratory (SDO).
It seems a small sunspot has been observed, that has the opposite polarity of cycle 24 sunspots.
by Anthony Watts, April 11, 2018 in WUWT
Right now, the sun is a cueball, as seen below in this image today from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) and has been without sunspots for 10 days. So far in 2018, 61% of days have been without sunspots (…)
by Willy Eschenbach, March 30, 2018 in WUWT
People have asked about the tools that I use to look for any signature of sunspot-related solar variations in climate datasets. They’ve wondered whether these tools are up to the task. What I use are periodograms and Complete Ensemble Empirical Mode Decomposition (CEEMD). Periodograms show how much strength there is at various cycle lengths (periods) in a given signal. CEEMD decomposes a signal into underlying simpler signals.
Now, a lot of folks seem to think that they can determine whether a climate dataset is related to the sunspot cycle simply by looking at a graph. So, here’s a test of that ability. Below is recent sunspot data, along with four datasets A, B, C, and D. The question is, which of the four datasets (if any) is affected by sunspots?