Explosive Volcanism Triggered the Little Ice Age

Headline at Ice Age Now blog:

Volcanism alone can explain the Little Ice Age (LIA), researchers insist. Low sunspot activity is not the culprit.

Precisely dated records of ice-cap growth from Arctic Canada and Iceland show that “Little Ice Age summer cold and ice growth began abruptly between 1275 and 1300 AD, followed by a substantial intensification 1430–1455 AD,” researchers found.These intervals of sudden ice growth coincide with two of the most volcanically perturbed half-centuries of the past millennium, the study shows. “Explosive volcanism produces abrupt summer cooling at these times.”“Our results suggest that the onset of the LIA can be linked to an unusual 50-year-long episode with four large sulfur-rich explosive eruptions, each with global sulfate loading >60 Tg.

”Once the ice age was triggered, cold summers were maintained by sea-ice/ocean feedbacks long after volcanic aerosols were removed. the authors assert. “Large changes in solar irradiance are not required.

Full Post is HERE.
The original research document is HERE.

“Abrupt onset of the Little Ice Age triggered by volcanism and sustained by sea-ice/ocean feedbacks,” published on 31 January 2012

From a comment on the Ice Age Now Post:

From what I see on this page it sounds like the researchers are not aware of what causes the increased volcanic activity and earthquakes in the first place. Namely a very weak solar cycle is directly linked to a substantial increase in volcanic activity. The “experts” are still having a hard time connecting the dots.

I have published the graphic below several times showing an increase in volcanic activity during grand minimums. The question is still open, how does a quiet sun cause an increase in volcanic activity on the earth?


Your thoughts are most welcome?  What is the solar connection to earthquakes on the planet? It looks like the sudden cool down starts before the plethora of volcanic eruptions on the chart. Does the cooling cause eruptions?



Solar minimums may be final piece of puzzle in fall of Western Civilisation

Sam Khoury writing in the Nation


By the 1st century BC, Rome was the most advanced and powerful civilisation on Earth and Romans’ material wealth was skyrocketing. Men and women are increasingly less interested in marriage and no-fault divorce is enacted. Birth rates start to decline below the replacement rate. The citizen soldiers are eventually replaced with professional soldiers who expect compensation and are loyal to the military itself, not the state. As the empire expands in a series of wars of choice it is becomes increasingly multicultural thanks to new citizens from conquered territories. Their loyalty is in question but Rome depends on them as mercenaries to defend the declining state. The government and the military industrial complex replace the private sector as the sole entity responsible for everyone’s well-being. There is moral decay and brutality as Julius Caesar brags about killing one million Gauls. This period could be compared our own world since 1970. By the 400s Rome is being pillaged by Visigoths and Vandals, who ensure it never makes it to the 500s.

However there was something else occurring in the 400s that wasn’t happening in the preceding centuries. Although corruption and immorality were rife, the scientific and historical record shows the climate cooled but, more destructively, it became erratic. Long dry conditions were interrupted by intense deluges. Unseasonal spells of cold weather became the norm. Although solar activity records only date back to the 1600s, these conditions were almost certainly the result of a combination of low solar activity and high volcanic activity – much like the post-medieval warm period that saw solar minimums like the so-called Maunder and Dalton and large volcanic eruptions like the Tambora which, combined with the Dalton, created freezing summers. The result during the 400s was rising food prices, which along with the other factors created deep social dissatisfaction as the economy faltered.

There are proposals on the table to turn the Afghani war over to mercenaries and bring out troops home to a land were middle-class citizens are questioning the role of government and wealth disparity created by robotic and AI technology is growing.  We are becoming more like the Roman Empire, dropping birth rates, fewer marriages, and more debauchery.  Moral decay and fear of the government rampant.  But a significant change in the climate, a highly erratic climate of droughts and floods destroyed the food supply and that was the final blow to the Roman Empire.  Is this or fate?

Enter the monkey in the wrench. After 200 years of healthy solar maximums, solar activity has been plummeting since 2010 and the first solar minimum will hit bottom around 2021. By the 2030s solar physicists now reckon that a grand solar minimum will consume most of the rest of the century. Volcanic activity has also been on the increase and more is expected as eruptions occur most often during solar cycle peaks or at solar minimums. In previous articles published in this newspaper I chronicled increasingly intense and erratic weather patterns that have coincided with the lower solar activity since 2010. The latest include a cold front that descended on the US Midwest in late June dropping temperatures to near freezing, and recent snowfall 200 kilometres south of Moscow in Tarttarastran. Wheat futures immediately rose 6 per cent. At this time the world takes cheap foodstuffs for granted. A change of this reality in the future could shake the global world order to its foundations.

Full Article in HERE.


New Study By German Physicists Concludes We Can Expect Climate Cooling For Next 50 Years!

By P Gosselin at the No Tricks Zone

German physicists: “CO2 plays only minor role for global climate”

In a just published study in The Open Atmospheric Science Journal here, German scientists Horst-Joachim Lüdecke and Carl-Otto Weiss have used a large number of temperature proxies worldwide to construct a global temperature mean over the last 2000 years, dubbed G7, in order to find out more about the sun’s role on climate change.

Their results drop a huge surprise on the laps of scientists who have long believed the earth is warming due to human-emitted CO2.

The analysis by the German scientists shows the strongest climate cycle components as 1000, 460, and 190-year periods. The G7 global 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.

Correlation 0.84

Using further complex analyses, they constructed a representation of G7, which shows a remarkable Pearson correlation of 0.84 with the 31-year running average of G7.

The authors used extensive local temperature proxy data [2 – 6] together with Britain’s Hadley CRU temperature records since 1870 and the recent satellite measurements, and combined them to make up the global temperature time series G7 for the last 2000 years.

In accordance to the definition of climate, the blue curve in the paper’s Fig. 3, shown above, depicts the climate history as the 30-year running average of the grey curve. Noteworthy, the historically known temperature extrema are well reproduced by the blue climate curve: The Roman Optimum (~0 AD), the Medieval Optimum (~1000 AD), the Present Optimum, as well as the Little Ice Age (~1500 AD),

Also the pronounced minimum of 1450 AD, when the vines in southern France were killed by cold. Also clearly shown by the climate curve is the warming from 1850 to 1995.

The detailed analysis of the local records show in general a multitude of peaks, the authors say, and the G7 however shows only 3 dominant peaks, which correspond to cycles known from local studies, of approx. 1000, 500, 200-year periods. The combination of local records to a global record apparently averages out local cycles and emphasizes global cycles.

The sum of these three dominant cycles (red curve in Fig. 3) reproduces the measured climate (blue curve in Fig. 3) with a remarkable correlation of 0.84.

In particular the sum of the three cycles shows the temperature increase from 1850 to 1995 as a result of the three natural cycles, the German researchers say, adding: “Thus one can conclude that CO2 plays only a minor role (if any) for the global climate.”

Lüdecke and Weiss note that the present maximum of the cycle sum corresponds well with the world temperature stagnation since 1995 AD, the stagnation unexplained by current climate models. As the dominant cycles have persisted for an extended time, one can assume that they will persist for the near future. They write: “This allows to predict cooling until 2070 AD.”

References are HERE.

Is Our Sun Slowing Down in Its Middle Age?

By: Monica Bobra writing in Sky and Telescope

The Sun, now halfway through its life, might be slowing its magnetic activity, researchers say, which could lead to permanent changes in the sunspots and auroras we see.

We all slow down in middle age, has our sun reached that point?

There is evidence that Sun-like stars slow their magnetic activity after reaching middle age. And the Sun is, in fact, at just that age. But while we might be seeing some evidence of a slow-down, the process will likely happen over thousands, if not millions, of years. Furthermore, this is not the first time that the Sun has deviated from previous behavior. During a 70-year period in the 17th century, the Sun shed all but a few of its sunspots, only to right its course again.

Well maybe not! It could just be another overlapping cycle.

And maybe we’re not seeing a slow-down at all. While the strongest sunspot cycle rises and falls over the course of 11 years, there are other sunspot cycles that rise and fall over longer timespans. These other cycles could affect the 11-year cycle. So we can’t yet conclude that the Sun’s relatively recent changes are permanent. The best thing to do is just keep on looking: There are many more clues buried in the Sun’s many heartbeats.

I write about some of those cycles in a paper on the Dalton Minimum. dalton_minimum

Here is a chart from that paper showing the multiple solar cycles:

Solar Cycles

Your thoughts?  Middle age sun, or just another cycle?

Indirect Effects of the Sun on Earth’s Climate

Mike Jonas writing as Guest Blogger at Watt Up With That has written an very interesting essay on the potential impact of the sun on our climate and climate history. Recommend reading for Next Grand Minimum readers, as there is a mention of the Maunder Minimum.

I would also direct your attention to the comments, which contain some interesting discussion.


Dr.Stephanie Osborn, Interstellar Woman of Mystery, on Solar Climate Influence.

Dr Osborn has an interesting career in addition to being a Science Fiction writer.

A veteran of more than 20 years in the civilian space program, as well as various military space defense programs, she worked on numerous space shuttle flights and the International Space Station and counts the training of astronauts on her resum�. Her space experience also includes Spacelab and ISS operations, variable star astrophysics, Martian aeolian geophysics, radiation physics, and nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons effects.

She posted the following on Jerry Pournelle’s Chaos Manor blog:

1) Yes indeed, I have been following sunspot numbers for many years now. And while sunspot numbers have been decreasing steadily for several cycles to date, the current dearth is very unusual — especially for this point in the cycle — and, to quote my favorite Vulcan, “Fascinating.” I am definitely continuing to keep an eye on the activity, or rather lack thereof.

2) There is a new model out (the “double-dynamo” model of the solar interior), only about 2 years old, which does a reasonable (though not perfect; it’s still not complex enough, IMHO) job of predicting extended solar minima, as well as the somewhat unusual “two-hump” shapes of recent solar cycles (when sunspot numbers vs. time are plotted). This model is predicting an extended minimum beginning in about 10-15 years, and this roughly matches my own considerations based on observation. (I think I referenced the model’s prediction in my original email, which you excerpted, though I may not have been clear enough; sometimes I forget not everyone is in the astronomical field, hence not familiar with the things I am. My bad.) If it is, indeed, not complex enough (as I strongly believe), then it may be that said extended minimum may begin sooner or later than predicted. The current rather precipitous decrease in sunspot numbers so soon after a solar max — which was itself somewhat paltry — may indicate an early start…or not. We will have to wait and see.

3) The “Little Ice Age” was actually a significantly extended cool period lasting several centuries, and no less than FOUR extended minima occurred during its “tenure.” These include, in order, the Wolf, the Spörer, the Maunder, and the Dalton minima. These extended minima were not all of the same “depth,” in that the minimum numbers of sunspots were not the same across all of them — the Maunder was far deeper than the rest — but as I mentioned previously, there are indications that we are hitting numbers in the range of the Dalton already. [Note that, during the Maunder Minimum, sunspots became so rare, that a grand total of only ~50 were observed over 28 years — this corresponds roughly to two and a half solar cycles. In a “normal” cycle, we would expect to see around 50,000 sunspots in that same timeframe, some three orders of magnitude more.]

4) The fact that, as sunspot numbers go down, the overall energies output by the Sun also go down is an indication that, in this instance, correlation may well equal causation, at least to some degree. Add in a few large volcanic eruptions to complicate matters — and there usually ARE some large volcanic eruptions in such timeframes, as a matter of course — and it may well prove interesting times ahead, as well as in the past.

5) The fact that cosmic ray fluxes are increasing is further indication that solar activity is decreasing, as the solar wind normally tends to provide a shield of some (relative) substance against cosmic rays, which originate outside our solar system, mostly from galactic sources (supernovae, active galactic nuclei, etc.). But as solar activity declines, the solar wind also declines, and so too would the cosmic ray flux increase, as the plasma which shields us from its entrance into the inner solar system decreases. (We still have the magnetosphere shielding us.)

I’m simplifying, of course; things are always more complex than meets the eye. But given the steady decrease in numbers for a good 3 or more cycles now (with considerable fluctuation for several cycles before that), I will be surprised if, at some time in the next few cycles, we do not enter an extended minimum, even if only of moderate depth. And it really isn’t a matter of “if,” but of when. Many variable star astronomers (and that’s what I studied in school — spotted variables, no less) consider that the Sun is at the very least borderline variable; some consider it outrightly so. I tend to fall in the latter camp; it all depends on the percentage of variability, and we are only now obtaining the kind of data we need to determine that. But it doesn’t actually take much.

Of course, only time will be the true validation if we are going to have another Grand Minimum.  Readers thoughts?

A GLOBAL cooldown will usher in a 100-year mini-ice age, UK Experts

Details in the UK Daily Star:

Experts told Daily Star Online planet Earth is on course for a “Little Age Ice” within the next three years thanks to a cocktail of climate change and low solar activity.

Research shows a natural cooling cycle that occurs every 230 years began in 2014 and will send temperatures plummeting even further by 2019.

Scientists are also expecting a “huge reduction” in solar activity for 33 years between 2020 and 2053 that will cause thermometers to crash.

Both cycles suggest Earth is entering a global cooling cycle that could have devastating consequences for global economy, human life and society as we know it.


David Dilley, CEO of Global Weather Oscillations, told Daily Star Online global warming and cooling cycles are determined by the gravitational forces of the Earth, moon and sun.

Each cycle lasts around 120,000 years, with sub-cycles of around 230 years.

He said: “We have had five warming cycles since about 900AD, each followed by a dramatic cooling cycle.

“The last global warming cycle ended in 1790 and the year 2020 is 230 following this – thus I have been talking about rapid cooling beginning in 2019.”

He said the oncoming cooling will send temperatures plummeting to lows last seen in the 1940s – when the mercury bottomed out at -21C during winter in the UK.

He said: “Cooling from 2019 into about 2020 to 2021 will bring world temperatures back to where they were in the 1940s through the 1960s.

“The Arctic will freeze solid and rapidly by 2020 and thus allow much more Arctic air to build up and move southward toward Great Britain.

“Expect by the mid to late 2020s that winter temperatures will dip even colder than the 1940s to 1960s.

“This will last for 60 to 100 years and then a gradual warm-up toward the next global warming cycle that will not be as warm as the one we are now coming out of.”


The Met Office has previously told Daily Star Online that a new mini-ice age is a “worst case scenario”, adding that while temperatures are likely to dip, it will do little to offset man-made global warming.

But, if there is no global warming, as the pause continues, we could still see some serious cooling on the scale of a Maunder Minimum over then next 60–70 years.