The New Maunder Minimum? Vegetable Shortages Strike London

Eric Worrall writing at WUWT

Why do I describe this as a possible early taste of Maunder Minimum like conditions? As WUWT has reported, solar activity has been unusually low this cycle, and appears to be trending downwards, leading to predictions we are entering a new solar grand minimum.

While the connection between solar activity and weather is controversial, in Europe, Solar Grand Minima appear to be associated with cold, rainy weather, and growing season difficulties.

Consider this description of the Little Ice Age, one of the most brutal periods of which coincided with the Maunder Minimum (1645 – 1715). The description is from Hubert Lamb, founded of the Climatic Research Unit.

Hubert Lamb said that in many years, “snowfall was much heavier than recorded before or since, and the snow lay on the ground for many months longer than it does today.” In Lisbon, Portugal, snowstorms were much more frequent than today; one winter in the 17th century produced eight snowstorms. Many springs and summers were cold and wet but with great variability between years and groups of years. Crop practices throughout Europe had to be altered to adapt to the shortened, less reliable growing season, and there were many years of dearth and famine (such as the Great Famine of 1315–1317, but that may have been before the Little Ice Age).

Read More:

Obviously in today’s connected world high speed transport will soon solve the shortage in England. It is possible to fly or ship vast quantities of food from other regions to make up for any lack.

However this unexpected food shortage should be a wakeup call to Europe and the world, that there are potential climate problems other than global warming which should occupy some of their attention.

If current conditions worsen, and crop losses in Europe and other Northern growing regions become the norm, at the very least poor people will begin to suffer from the impact of rising prices.

The rest of the article is HERE. This may be only temporary, so watch carefully if it becomes longer term trends. We are having excessive snow and rain in California which is producing excessive flooding. Long-term flooding will slow spring planting.


4 thoughts on “The New Maunder Minimum? Vegetable Shortages Strike London

  1. sexton16 February 8, 2017 / 3:23 am

    No problem here in mid Sweden.Broccoli plentiful and cheap.

  2. Gabriel February 8, 2017 / 9:04 pm

    I guess most of the confusion on what’s going on with our planet derives from the fact we never experienced a period of many solar cycles with decreasing sunspots activity. As Earth loses its upper atmospheric layers, it also loses thermal inertia thus leading the weather to become easily affected by the amount of Sun’s radiation reaching the soil (consider the extreme case of lack of atmosphere as those of Mercury or the Moon). If clouds cover dominate than temperatures easily go down and wet weather tends to prevail. Rainfall, snowfall and floods show up depending on the local conditions. In the absence of clouds cover temperatures rises and dry weather tends to prevail. Then maybe droughts appear. The lack of thermal inertia thus leads to a less steady weather in any condition which is not the best for agriculture at all. This means significant shortage of agricultural production might take place all around the world during a grand minimum.

  3. The Atmosphere Guy February 9, 2017 / 3:40 am

    We know (from satellite behaviour) that the atmosphere expands and contracts under the influence of sunspot activity but that it does not do so in a uniform manner. We can see that other influences are at work but the data we have is limited.
    Steady TSI does not explain the weather variability noted; we have to revert to expansion and contraction of the atmosphere itself. We have seen the swift decline in sunspot numbers; this would imply a contraction in the upper atmosphere profile allowing cyclonic lows to traverse unusually far south. However there has been a significant upswing in coronal hole activity and associated solar winds – illustrated by an up-spike in the Ap index. If we allow that this upswing has delayed and restricted the normal seasonal southward movement of the atmospheric structure – in effect pushed it back – particularly over those sections of the profile most sensitive to that influence and contrary to the exaggerated southward movement in other areas caused by low sunspot activity, then we have an answer to the ‘deep loop’ structure observed, causing the cyclonic lows to swing first south, then back north, with the associated wind flows dragging the heat and cold in the manner noted.
    Long term analysis, when both sunspot and solar wind activity decline and Ol’ Sol goes into snooze mode – then we have some serious cause for concern – in spite of steady irradiance.
    Recommend :

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s