Grand Minimum Drought

Russ Steele

I have written before about connection between grand minimums and drought. P Gosselin writing at the No Tricks Zone has another paper that supports that connection.

Yet Another Paper Shows “The Enormous Importance Of Solar Activity Fluctuations On Climate”

Yet another study has appeared in the Journal of Geophysical Research, this one looks at the precipitation history on the Tibet Plateau of the last 1000 years.

Figure 1: Reconstruction of precipitation amounts for the edge of the Tibet Plateau. The bars on the chart depict prominent weak phases of solar activity, which correspond to Om = Oort Minimum; Wm = Wolf Minimum; Sm = Spörer Minimum; Mm = Maunder Minimum; Dm = Dalton Minimum). Figure from: Sun & Liu (2012).

Geologist Dr. Sebastian Lüning and chemist Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt have written a summary of this paper, which I’ve translated in the English:

==============================================
New Study of the Tibet Plateau: Whenever Solar Activity is Weak, the Rains Disappear
By Sebastian Lüning and Fritz Vahrenholt

The Tibet Plateau is at 3000 to 5000 meters elevation the highest and most expansive high plateau on Earth. Therefore it reacts sensitively to climate changes. Junyan Sun and Yu Liu of the Chinese Academy of Sciences studied tree rings in the northwest plateau edge from two living 1000 year old trees. Tree growth in the area of study is particularly sensitive to the amount of precipitation.

Both scientists were able to reconstruct the distinct precipitation fluctuations occurring over the last 1000 years. The corresponding wet and dry periods each lasted some decades. A comparison to the other climate reconstructions coming from the same region shows great similarities in moisture development and that we are dealing with a representative regional climate signal. There were pronounced periods of droughts from 1092-1172, 1441-1517 and 1564–1730. Especially the Great Drought of 1441-1517 is mentioned in numerous historical documents and catastrophe reports. The Great Drought occurred during a weak period of solar activity, the so-called Spörer Minimum, which occurred from 1420 to 1570.

Interestingly, almost all other periods of drought occurred during times of solar minima, among them the Oort Minimum, Wolf Minimum, Maunder Minimum and Dalton Minimum (see Figure 1 above). Every time the sun goes into a slumber for a few decades, the rains on the Tibet Plateau stay away. A frequency analysis of precipitation curves also delivers evidence on solar cycles. Here the Gleissberg Cycle (60-120 year period) and the Suess/de Vries Cycle (180-220 years) are seen in the datasets.

Here in California out political leaders are preparing for global warming, when solar scientist are telling us that we are on the cusp of the next grand minimum.  Rather than build more dams to collect what will moisture we will have in the Sierra, our political leaders are supporting environmentalist demands that we destroy dams blocking salmon runs. The world is not warming from CO2 and the sun is going quiet and we are on the cusp of the next grand minimum.

THE HOCKEY SCHTICK: New paper confirms Little Ice Age was a global phenomenon, related to solar activity

New paper confirms Little Ice Age was a global phenomenon, related to solar activity

A paper published today in Geophysical Research Letters confirms that “the Little Ice Age was a global event, probably caused by a change in solar [activity] and volcanic forcing [activity].” The paper finds that Greenland and Antarctica cooled synchronously, although to different magnitudes, suggesting to the authors that climate feedbacks operate differently in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. The Little Ice Age was associated with the Maunder Minimum, a lull in solar activity that may be similar to the present. This paper corroborates other recent research showing that the Little Ice Age was a global, not local, phenomenon. According to the paper, the temperature from 1400-1800 AD in Antarctica was on average ~ 0.52C colder and Greenland ~ 1C colder than than the last 100 year average. This would imply that the 0.7C global warming since 1850 simply represents a recovery from the Little Ice Age.

GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, VOL. 39, L09710, 7 PP., 2012

doi:10.1029/2012GL051260

Little Ice Age cold interval in West Antarctica: Evidence from borehole temperature at the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Divide

Key Points

Cold interval from 1300 to 1800 C.E. at WAIS Divide

The 1400-1800 C.E. was 0.52+/-0.28 deg C colder than the last 100 years

Cooling broadly synchronous to Greenland cooling, with lesser amplitude

Anais J. Orsi

Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA

Bruce D. Cornuelle

Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA

Jeffrey P. Severinghaus

Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA

The largest climate anomaly of the last 1000 years in the Northern Hemisphere was the Little Ice Age (LIA) from 1400–1850 C.E., but little is known about the signature of this event in the Southern Hemisphere, especially in Antarctica. We present temperature data from a 300 m borehole at the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Divide. Results show that WAIS Divide was colder than the last 1000-year average from 1300 to 1800 C.E. The temperature in the time period 1400–1800 C.E. was on average 0.52 ± 0.28°C colder than the last 100-year average. This amplitude is about half of that seen at Greenland Summit (GRIP). This result is consistent with the idea that the LIA was a global event, probably caused by a change in solar and volcanic forcing, and was not simply a seesaw-type redistribution of heat between the hemispheres as would be predicted by some ocean-circulation hypotheses. The difference in the magnitude of the LIA between Greenland and West Antarctica suggests that the feedbacks amplifying the radiative forcing may not operate in the same way in both regions.

via THE HOCKEY SCHTICK: New paper confirms Little Ice Age was a global phenomenon, related to solar activity.

On the Cusp? — England’s Coldest May in 300 years

Russ Steele

The story is in METRO:

Britain’s coldest May in more than 300 years will deliver 50mph gales, 5cm (2in) of rain and flooding.

Central England temperatures so far this month average 8.6C, 1.6C below normal.

The last time May was colder was in 1698, at 8.5C over the whole month.

After studying 2,800-year-old core samples from a European lake, an international team of scientists found that weakening solar activity sparked an abrupt period of cooling that lasted for about 200 years. The cooling took place over an 8 year period. We may be on the cusp of 200 more years of cooling. Cooling which is going to take place rapidly.  Stay tuned!

Solar grand minima linked to cooling period in Europe

Regional atmospheric circulation shifts induced by a grand solar minimum

by Celia Martin-Puertas, Katja Matthes, Achim Brauer, Raimund Muscheler, Felicitas Hansen, Christof Petrick, Ala Aldahan, Göran Possnert & Bas van GeelNature Geoscience 2012 doi:10.1038/ngeo1460

Editors Note: Emphasis Added

Large changes in solar ultraviolet radiation can indirectly affect climate1 by inducing atmospheric changes. Specifically, it has been suggested that centennial-scale climate variability during the Holocene epoch was controlled by the Sun2, 3. However, the amplitude of solar forcing is small when compared with the climatic effects and, without reliable data sets, it is unclear which feedback mechanisms could have amplified the forcing. Here we analyse annually laminated sediments of Lake Meerfelder Maar, Germany, to derive variations in wind strength and the rate of 10Be accumulation, a proxy for solar activity, from 3,300 to 2,000 years before present. We find a sharp increase in windiness and cosmogenic 10Be deposition 2,759  ±  39 varve years before present and a reduction in both entities 199  ±  9 annual layers later. We infer that the atmospheric circulation reacted abruptly and in phase with the solar minimum. A shift in atmospheric circulation in response to changes in solar activity is broadly consistent with atmospheric circulation patterns in long-term climate model simulations, and in reanalysis data that assimilate observations from recent solar minima into a climate model. We conclude that changes in atmospheric circulation amplified the solar signal and caused abrupt climate change about 2,800 years ago, coincident with a grand solar minimum.

via Solar grand minima linked to cooling period in Europe | Watts Up With That?.

If Grand Minimum on 210 Year Cycle We Are Due

Russ Steele

P Gosselin posts an important study at the No Tricks Zone: PNAS Study Shows Powerful Correlation Between Sun And Climate Over The Last 9000 Years

By Dr. Sebastian Lüning and Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt

(Translation / editing by P Gosselin)

(Editors Note: I have posted an extract below with some emphasis)

. . . a new paper by the international team of scientists led by Friedhelm Steinhilber of the Swiss Federal Institute for Aquatic Sciences and technology (Eawag) has just produced yet more important evidence of the sun’s impact on the Holocene climate development. The group, which also includes glaciologist Hans Oerter of the Alfred Wegener Institute in Bremerhaven, Germany, published the results last month in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Using multiple Antarctic and Greenland ice cores and global tree-ring data, the scientists reconstructed solar activity over the last 9000 years. They also used the so-called cosmogenic beryllium and carbon isotopes 10Be and 14C, whose frequency on Earth is controlled by the strength of the sun’s magnetic field, and thus by solar activity.

The group carried out a spectral analysis of the new solar activity curves and found, as expected, the usual characteristic solar cycles, among them also the 210-year Suess-de Vries cycle, the 1000-year Eddy-cycle and the 2300-year Hallstatt-cycle. The Grand Solar Minima coincided mostly with the minima of the Suess-de Vries cycles.

The cycles are superimposed by the longterm rising and falling signal of orbital changes associated with the Milankovitch cycles. The Milankovitch cycle is in part responsible for the warm temperatures of the Holocene Optimum 6000 years ago, when it was considerably warmer than today. Steinhilber and his colleagues removed these orbital signals from the data in order to filter out the primary solar activity.

They then compared the new solar activity reconstruction with a climate dataset earlier obtained by colleagues in a Chinese cave covering the last 9000 years. The fluctuations in the 18O-oxygen isotope concentrations show the precipitation fluctuations and the intensity of the Asian monsoons. What resulted was a surprising agreement between solar activity and the Asian climate development (see Figure 1 above).

In times of low solar activity, Asian monsoons were less pronounced in general. Also the most important solar cycles could be found in the frequency analysis of the Asian climate signal. One can only conclude that solar activity cycles are the main driver of the last 10,000 years and that they continue to be so today as we continue to remain in the now well-documented pattern.

In the 9000-year time period investigated by Florian Steinhilber and his colleagues, there are however some phases where the correlation between solar activity and climate is missing. For these periods, the scientists assume that other geological factors, like large volcanic eruptions and associated atmospheric aerosols, or other natural factors influenced and overrode the solar signal. In general these factors must always be taken into account when conducting statistical analyses.

The new results from the Steinhilber Group once again shows the significant importance of the sun on the Earth’s climate development.

Russ Steele 

The Windsor Star has the details:

A catastrophic freeze has wiped out about 80 per cent of Ontario’s apple crop and has the province’s fruit industry looking at losses already estimated at more than $100 million.

The full story is HERE.

Gilroy said about 65 per cent of the 215 commercial apple growers in Ontario have crop insurance but the disaster has the board approaching the provincial and federal governments for help under an agri-recovery program.

Some growers across Ontario have also lost entire orchards of peaches, sour cherries, pears, plums and nectarines, said Phil Tregunno, chairman of the Ontario Tender Fruit Producers Marketing Board.

It depended on location. The board is estimating 20 to 30 per cent of that $48 million crop is done.

A shortening growing season is a grand minimum signature. This is only one year, we need a series of years with spring freezes to make a positive declaration. Stay Tuned.  A killing frost in June will be a major indicator.

On the Cusp? Record sea ice! National Weather Service, Anchorage

RECORD SEA ICE AT PRIBILOF ISLANDS.PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICEANCHORAGE AK THU MAY 3 2012

THIS HAS BEEN AN EXTREME WINTER FOR SEA ICE IN THE BERING SEA AND NOW WE HAVE BROKEN THE RECORDS FOR MOST NUMBER OF DAYS WITH ICE AT BOTH SAINT PAUL ISLAND AND SAINT GEORGE ISLAND.AS OF TODAY SEA ICE HAS BEEN AT SAINT PAUL ISLAND FOR 103 DAYS THIS WINTER BREAKING THE PREVIOUS RECORD OF 100 DAYS SET IN 2010.

THE NUMBER OF DAYS WITH SEA ICE AT SAINT GEORGE ISLAND TOTALED 79 WHEN THE ICE RETREATED NORTH ON THE 25TH OF APRIL. THE PREVIOUS RECORD OF 60 DAYS WAS SET IN 2010.

THE SEA ICE EDGE TODAY IS WELL SOUTH OF SAINT PAUL ISLAND AND ICE IS LIKELY TO REMAIN AT THE ISLAND THROUGH THE MIDDLE OF MAY.THE SEA ICE IS NORTH OF SAINT GEORGE ISLAND TODAY BUT ICE IS FORECAST TO PUSH SOUTH OF THE ISLAND OVER THE WEEKEND DUE TO COLD NORTH WINDS.

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE ALASKA SEA ICE PROGRAM BEGAN ARCHIVING DATA IN THE MID 1980′S. SEA ICE DATA PRIOR TO THIS IS VERY LIMITED AND INCONSISTENT.

via Record sea ice! National Weather Service, Anchorage.

Watts Up With That?

…the predicted size makes this the smallest sunspot cycle in about 100 years

(Updated 2012/05/01)

From: http://solarscience.msfc.nasa.gov/predict.shtml

The current prediction for Sunspot Cycle 24 gives a smoothed sunspot number maximum of about 60 in the Spring of 2013. We are currently over three years into Cycle 24. The current predicted size makes this the smallest sunspot cycle in about 100 years.

The prediction method has been slightly revised. The previous method found a fit for both the amplitude and the starting time of the cycle along with a weighted estimate of the amplitude from precursor predictions (polar fields and geomagnetic activity near cycle minimum). Recent work [see Hathaway Solar Physics; 273, 221 (2011)] indicates that the equatorward drift of the sunspot latitudes as seen in the Butterfly Diagram follows a standard path for all cycles provided the dates are taken relative to a starting time determined by…

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