Archive for the ‘Solar science’ Category

Solar Cycle 24 has passed its maximum – 25 years of cooling to be expected in this Landscheidt minimum

October 4, 2013

The September sunspot numbers are now out and it would seem that Solar Cycle 24 has passed its maximum. It looks very much like SC23, SC24 and the coming SC25 will be comparable to SC4, 5 and 6. Solar Cycles 5 and 6 were responsible for the Dalton Minimum. SC 24 and 25 will constitute the Landscheidt Minimum and we can now expect some 25 additional years of global cooling (which has of course already started – about 6 or 7 years ago).

LSC: This month was recorded as the lowest month since Jan 2011 which was the beginning of the rampup for SC24. Cycle max is close or passed with the northern hemisphere changing polarity and the south still somewhat floundering. The southern hemisphere just outweighing the northern hemisphere, showing the south is not meeting expectations by some that a second peak will occur. … SIDC 36.9, NOAA unadjusted at 55.0 (prov). 

NASA has made its latest prediction:

SC24 prediction October 2013

SC24 prediction October 2013

The transition from SC 23 to SC 24 looks very similar to that from SC4 to SC5.

SC4-6 and Dalton

SC4-6 and Dalton

Of course the IPCC makes little of any solar effects and while the variation of direct total irradiance is small, they are rather nonchalant about the very many profound ways in which solar effects manifest themselves in climate (via cloud formation and ocean cycles for example). But the global warmists and the IPCC have now so much invested in their increasingly dubious hypothesis that they are prepared to make the most convoluted contortions to deny the hiatus and that global cooling has started.

Judith Curry: 

Section 8.4.1 of the IPCC AR5 Report provides 2 pages of discussion on observations of solar irradiance.  But they conclude that all this doesn’t matter for the climate.  I agree that the TSI RF variations are much less than projected increased forcing due to the GHG.  But the solar-climate connection is probably a lot more complex than this statement implies. …..

…. Henrik Svensmark has an essay While the Sun Sleeps, …..

Solar activity has always varied. Around the year 1000, we had a period of very high solar activity, which coincided with the Medieval Warm Period. But after about 1300 solar activity declined and the world began to get colder. It was the beginning of the episode we now call the Little Ice Age.

It’s important to realise that the Little Ice Age was a global event. It ended in the late 19th Century and was followed by increasing solar activity. Over the past 50 years solar activity has been at its highest since the medieval warmth of 1000 years ago. But now it appears that the Sun has changed again, and is returning towards what solar scientists call a “grand minimum” such as we saw in the Little Ice Age.

The match between solar activity and climate through the ages is sometimes explained away as coincidence. Yet it turns out that, almost no matter when you look and not just in the last 1000 years, there is a link. Solar activity has repeatedly fluctuated between high and low during the past 10,000 years. In fact the Sun spent about 17 per cent of those 10,000 years in a sleeping mode, with a cooling Earth the result.

You may wonder why the international climate panel IPCC does not believe that the Sun’s changing activity affects the climate. The reason is that it considers only changes in solar radiation. That would be the simplest way for the Sun to change the climate – a bit like turning up and down the brightness of a light bulb.

Satellite measurements have shown that the variations of solar radiation are too small to explain climate change. But the panel has closed its eyes to another, much more powerful way for the Sun to affect Earth’s climate. In 1996 we discovered a surprising influence of the Sun – its impact on Earth’s cloud cover. High-energy accelerated particles coming from exploded stars, the cosmic rays, help to form clouds.

[C]limate scientists try to ignore this possibility.  If the Sun provoked a significant part of warming in the 20th Century, then the contribution by CO2 must necessarily be smaller.

The outcome may be that the Sun itself will demonstrate its importance for climate and so challenge the theories of global warming. No climate model has predicted a cooling of the Earth – quite the contrary. ….




IPCC still cooking it’s books to cover-up the inconvenient truths

September 27, 2013

The 95% probability/certainty of global warming being due to human activity is based on a show of hands and not on any evidence or statistical analysis of data. What it actually says is that 95% of all global warming believers, believe.

Late last night the IPCC delegates in Stockholm were still messing around preparing their 30 page political summary of their AR5 report to be released today.

The political summary of AR5 is primarily a CYA effort to protect the posteriors of the policy makers (mainly political figures, bureaucrats and activists) in the face of a long row of broken models and broken hypotheses. The IPCC has forgotten that natural variability is a euphemism for unknown mechanisms which cannot be calculated or predicted. It is going to be interesting to see just how the summary report will cover-up, deny or ignore the long string of inconvenient facts:

  • Global temperatures have not risen for 17-18 years while CO2 has kept on increasing. 
  • Global temperatures have been declining for the last 11 years. 
  • None of the IPCC’s computer models have predicted the warming hiatus or the cooling over the last decade.
  • Global wildfires are lower than normal. 
  • Rainfall patterns (and the Indian monsoon) continue within the bounds of known natural variability. 
  • Food and grain production is at an all-time high. 
  • Flood frequency and flood levels have not been at unprecedented levels. Just more people live in flood-plains today than before. 
  • CO2 in the atmosphere reached the magic level of 400 ppm (albeit for just a few hours) and nothing happened.
  • How much of the CO2 concentration increase is due to carbon dioxide from fossil fuel. combustion is unclear but fossil fuel emissions are only 5% of global carbon dioxide emissions. 
  • The absorption and release of carbon dioxide by the oceans is unknown and the error margin is greater than the total amount released by fossil fuels.
  • CO2 absorption mechanisms do not care where the CO2 being absorbed came from.
  • The sensitivity of global temperature to CO2 concentration has been grossly exaggerated by the computer models.
  • Carbon dioxide concentration is more likely to follow global temperature (due to subsequent changes in emission and absorption rates) than to lead it.
  • Sea ice levels are increasing at both poles with the Antarctic at record high levels.
  • Polar bear populations are thriving and increasing.
  • Sea levels are continuing to rise at just the historical levels due to the recovery from the last glacial and are not accelerating due to industrialisation or the use of fossil fuels.
  • Oceans are still strongly alkaline and any increase in acidity is within known natural variability.
  • Coral reefs have shown themselves to be self-healing when damaged and are not showing any signs of ocean acidification.
  • Climate models have grossly underestimated solar effects because the mechanisms are unknown.
  • Sunspot activity in SC24 is well down from SC 23 and is not unlike the period of the dalton minimum during SC5 and SC6.
  • Clouds and moisture in the atmosphere have a much bigger impact on global warming and cooling than CO2 in the atmosphere.
  • Cloud formation is linked to sunspot activity and cosmic rays.
  • Global warming and cooling follow solar effects via the oceans in long decadal cycles.
  • The number of hurricanes and tornadoes are at historically low levels.
  • Heat released from the earth’s interior by tectonic and volcanic activity is not known.
  • A Little Ice Age is more likely than further Global Warming and a global cooling cycle lasting 20-30 years may have begun.
  • This interglacial is due (within c. 1000 years) to come to an end.

There is more we don’t know that we don’t know about the climate than the IPCC would like to admit. And for policy makers, activists and bureaucrats who have followed misguided policies for the last 25 years it is no longer possible to admit that they have been making “certain” predictions in an ocean of uncertainty. They have replaced scientific objectivity by “consensus science” where the validity of a hypothesis is based on how many believe and not on evidence. The 95% probability/certainty of global warming being due to human activity being touted by the IPCC is based on a show of hands of believers, and not on any evidence or statistical analysis of data.

The sun, the clouds and the climate

September 5, 2013

The Svensmark theory is that variations in the Sun’s electromagnetic  behaviour leads to varaiations of the cosmic ray flux reaching earth which in turn impacts cloud formation on earth and that connects to global warming or cooling.  A more active sun leads to fewer cosmic rays which gives fewer clouds and more warming on earth.

Graphic from Jonova

The CLOUD experiments at CERN have shown that cosmic rays can in fact lead to cloud formation. Now Svensmark and his colleagues have published further evidence from the SKY2 experiments which confirm the connection.

H. Svensmark, Martin B. Enghoff and Jens Olaf Pepke Pedersen, Response of cloud condensation nuclei (>50 nm) to changes in ion-nucleation,   Physics Letters A 377 (2013) 2343–2347,

Full paper is available here: svensmark et al 2013

Abstract: In experiments where ultraviolet light produces aerosols from trace amounts of ozone, sulfur dioxide, and water vapor, the relative increase in aerosols produced by ionization by gamma sources is constant from nucleation to diameters larger than 50 nm, appropriate for cloud condensation nuclei. This result contradicts both ion-free control experiments and also theoretical models that predict a decline in the response at larger particle sizes. This unpredicted experimental finding points to a process not included in current theoretical models, possibly an ion-induced formation of sulfuric acid in small clusters.

The Technical University of Denmark has issued a Press Release:

Danish experiment suggests unexpected magic by cosmic rays in cloud formation

Researchers in the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) are hard on the trail of a previously unknown molecular process that helps commonplace clouds to form. Tests in a large and highly instrumented reaction chamber in Lyngby, called SKY2, demonstrate that an existing chemical theory is misleading.

Back in 1996 Danish physicists suggested that cosmic rays, energetic particles from space, are important in the formation of clouds. Since then, experiments in Copenhagen and elsewhere have demonstrated that cosmic rays actually help small clusters of molecules to form. But the cosmic-ray/cloud hypothesis seemed to run into a problem when numerical simulations of the prevailing chemical theory pointed to a failure of growth. 

Fortunately the chemical theory could also be tested experimentally, as was done with SKY2, the chamber of which holds 8 cubic metres of air and traces of other gases. One series of experiments confirmed the unfavourable prediction that the new clusters would fail to grow sufficiently to be influential for clouds. But another series of experiments, using ionizing rays, gave a very different result, as can be seen in the accompanying figure. 

The reactions going on in the air over our heads mostly involve commonplace molecules. During daylight hours, ultraviolet rays from the Sun encourage sulphur dioxide to react with ozone and water vapour to make sulphuric acid. The clusters of interest for cloud formation consist mainly of sulphuric acid and water molecules clumped together in very large numbers and they grow with the aid of other molecules.

Atmospheric chemists have assumed that when the clusters have gathered up the day’s yield, they stop growing, and only a small fraction can become large enough to be meteorologically relevant. Yet in the SKY2 experiment, with natural cosmic rays and gamma-rays keeping the air in the chamber ionized, no such interruption occurs. This result suggests that another chemical process seems to be supplying the extra molecules needed to keep the clusters growing. 

“The result boosts our theory that cosmic rays coming from the Galaxy are directly involved in the Earth’s weather and climate,” says Henrik Svensmark, lead author of the new report. “In experiments over many years, we have shown that ionizing rays help to form small molecular clusters. Critics have argued that the clusters cannot grow large enough to affect cloud formation significantly. But our current research, of which the reported SKY2 experiment forms just one part, contradicts their conventional view. Now we want to close in on the details of the unexpected chemistry occurring in the air, at the end of the long journey that brought the cosmic rays here from exploded stars.”

Simulating what could happen in the atmosphere, the DTU’s SKY2 experiment shows molecular clusters (red dots) failing to grow enough to provide significant numbers of “cloud condensation nuclei” (CCN) of more than 50 nanometres in diameter. This is what existing theories predict. But when the air in the chamber is exposed to ionizing rays that simulate the effect of cosmic rays, the clusters (blue dots) grow much more vigorously to the sizes suitable for helping water droplets to form and make clouds. (A nanometre is a millionth of a millimetre.)

Asymmetric reversal of the Sun’s magnetic field is under way – NASA

August 6, 2013

The sun’s magnetic field reverses roughly every 11 years at solar maximum. We are now approaching solar maximum of solar cycle 24 (SC 24) but this magnetic reversal is strongly assymetric according to NASA:

“The sun’s north pole has already changed sign, while the south pole is racing to catch up,” says Scherrer. Soon, however, both poles will be reversed, and the second half of Solar Max will be underway.”

The North pole of the sun switched polarity in mid-2012 which seemed early at the time since solar maximum was not expected till the fall of 2013. It is difficult to imagine that there will not be consequences for the Earth but what those consequences might be is not a “settled science”.

Certainly geomagnetic reversals on Earth have more to do with the flow patterns in the earth’s liquid core and have quite different time periods. The time span between geomagnetic reversals on the Earth vary between 0.1 and 1 million years with an average of 450,000 years.

The latest one, the Brunhes–Matuyama reversal, occurred 780,000 years ago. However,a study published in 2012 by a group from the German Research Center for Geosciences suggests that a brief complete reversal occurred only 41,000 years ago during the last glacial period. The reversal lasted only about 440 years with the actual change of polarity lasting around 250 years.

From Dr. Leif Svalgaard’s research page:

Solar magnetic reversal cycle

The NASA press release says:

August 5, 2013:  Something big is about to happen on the sun.  According to measurements from NASA-supported observatories, the sun’s vast magnetic field is about to flip.

“It looks like we’re no more than 3 to 4 months away from a complete field reversal,” says solar physicist Todd Hoeksema of Stanford University. “This change will have ripple effects throughout the solar system.”


Solar Cycle 24 double peak now clearly evident

May 9, 2013

Already in March there were signs that this Solar Cycle 24 would exibit a double peak. NASA’s latest sunspot prediction for Solar Cycle 24 as of 1st May 2013 clearly shows that the sunspot activity is into its “double peak for this Cycle. A double peak was also evident in Cycles 22 and 23 and also in Cycles 5 and 14. The levels for SC24 are still going to be the lowest for 100 years and predictions for SC 25 are that they will be even lower still. Most second peaks have been somewhat smaller than the first – though not in SC5 – and seem to add around 6 months to the cycle time.

If this is indeed a double peak then I expect that solar maximum will perhaps be a few months delayed from the NASA prediction of Fall 2013. End 2013 now seems more likely.

SC24 may 2013

The Dalton minimum spanned Solar Cycles 5 and 6 from 1790 to 1820.  The Maunder Minimum from 1645 to 1715 preceded the numbering of Solar Cycles (Solar Cycle 1 started in 1755). The likelihood that SC 24 and 25 may be similar to SC 5 and 6 is growing and so is the likelihood that we will see 2  – 3 decades of global cooling. It is more likely that for the next 20- 30 years this Landscheidt Minimum will resemble the Dalton Minimum period, but if SC25 is a very small cycle then we may even approach the conditions of the Little Ice Age during the Maunder Minimum. Landscheidt’s prediction was that this minimum would last from 2000 to 2060 and the global temperature stand-still for the last 15 years gives greater credence to his forecasts.

NASA: The Sunspot Cycle —

The Maunder Minimum

Early records of sunspots indicate that the Sun went through a period of inactivity in the late 17th century. Very few sunspots were seen on the Sun from about 1645 to 1715 (38 kb JPEG image). Although the observations were not as extensive as in later years, the Sun was in fact well observed during this time and this lack of sunspots is well documented. This period of solar inactivity also corresponds to a climatic period called the “Little Ice Age” when rivers that are normally ice-free froze and snow fields remained year-round at lower altitudes. There is evidence that the Sun has had similar periods of inactivity in the more distant past. The connection between solar activity and terrestrial climate is an area of on-going research.

The climate is a-changin

April 20, 2013

The winds of climate are changing direction – again.

Forty years ago “climate scientists” were sure we were entering a new ice age and even that we could have triggered the end of the current inter-glacial.

For forty years we have seen the growth of the global warming meme and the demonisation of carbon dioxide and of all things “fossil”.

A new economy based on the expensive and premature cessation of the use of fossil fuels took shape. All alternatives to fossil fuel – no matter how expensive or impractical – were worthy of subsidy. By invoking a connection to global warming any science project could attract funds. A fascist and authoritarian “environmental” politics gained ground.  The politicians had a new “label” for introducing taxation in the name of controlling climate (!). Vast new revenue streams of taxes and subsidies and carbon credits were created in the name of protecting the planet. In fact the penalty for not being “politically correct” on climate was seen as being so disadvantageous that every product – from toothpaste to children’s toys to aircraft and weapons – had to show that it was “climate-smart”. Meaningless new parameters like “carbon footprint” entered the vocabulary. No self-respecting newspaper or scientist or politician or business could afford to be heretical with respect to the new religion of the day.

But the Earth and the Sun and the resulting climate pay little attention to the puny efforts of man and dance to their own music. When an ice age is to come it will come and when the ice sheets are to retreat the earth will warm and humanity’s best option is to adapt to the changes as they come. If we understand anything about the Sun and its cycles, an ice age will surely come – whether in 10 or 10,000 years.  And we should concentrate on having the wherewithal to cope when it does. To attempt to control the climate has more than a hint of arrogance. We might as well try to ask the Sun to shine a little less brightly or for a little longer!

But for the last 17 years (or 12 or 18 depending upon how religious one is) global warming has stalled. Now vast amounts of a “new” fossil fuel – shale gas –  have been discovered and its utilisation is changing the economic landscape. “Global warming” was renamed to be “climate change”. The money making (for some) revenue schemes and subsidy-milking for unnecessary and expensive renewable energy have been revealed for the scams they are. Heretical views are being expressed again.

The climate winds are changing:

  1. The Great Green Con no. 1: The hard proof that finally shows global warming forecasts that are costing you billions were WRONG all along   
  2. A sensitive matter
  3. Spiegel Stops Believing…”Hot Debate Over Climate: How Reliable Are The Prognoses?” Growing Doubts Over Models! 

  4. Global warming: time to rein back on doom and gloom?
  5. Climate scientists struggle to explain warming slowdown 

  6. Mother Of German Green Weeklies, Die Zeit, Shocks Readers…Now Casts Doubt On Global Warming!

Could solar flare last week be linked to two major earthquakes yesterday?

April 17, 2013

Like primitive man I am overwhelmed by the power of the Sun and a firm believer that even minute solar effects can have a major effect on the Earth and its systems. (I also note that my deification of the Sun must be similar to that by our ancient ancestors and is probably not unconnected to my moving to Scandinavia). In any case I am convinced that for climate

“Solar effects are much more profound than many so-called climate scientists like to admit”,

but I am not sure how strong the link to earthquakes is.

The link between solar effects (radio flux, sunspots, magnetic reversals, proton events….) and volcano activity and earthquakes has been postulated and studied many times but if any such link does exist it is not something obvious and it is by unknown mechanisms. For some this search for such a link is not “science” and there is no link. For others it can be a lifetime’s quest. But “intuition” and “gut-feeling” keeps me believing that there must be a connection. It could well be that the build-up of stresses upto some “breaking point” within the earths crust are a result of ongoing geologic processes and do not need any external trigger like solar activity or the position of the planets to be unleashed. But even continental drift and the build-up of seismic or volcanic stresses are all – ultimately – driven by energy fluxes. And all energy fluxes on Earth can eventually be traced to the Sun (except perhaps if the energy is from any ongoing nuclear reactions in the Earth’s core).

There were two major earthquakes yesterday – USGS

  1. 6.6, 23km ESE of Aitape, Papua New Guinea, 2013-04-16 22:55:27 UTC, 13.0 km deep
  2. 7.8, 83km E of Khash, Iran, 2013-04-16 10:44:20 UTC, 82.0 km deep

And – I note in passing – on April 11th – 5 days ago there was a solar flare and a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) event. Could be just a coincidence of course – but perhaps not …

Discovery News: APR 11, 2013 03:00 PM ET

The sun has unleashed the biggest solar flare of the year, quickly followed by an Earth-directed coronal mass ejection (CME). Both phenomena have the potential to impact communications and electronics on Earth and in orbit.

Although the sun is currently experiencing “solar maximum” — the culmination of its approximate 11-year cycle — scientists have noted that this particular maximum is a lot quieter than predicted. At this time, the sun should be bubbling with violent active regions, exhibiting sunspots, popping off flares and ejecting CMEs. But so far, the sun seems to be taking it relatively easy.

This morning (at 0716 UT), active region (AR) 1719 erupted with an M-class flare. With a rating of M6.5, this event is the most energetic flare of 2013 (although it’s a lot less impressive than 2012′s X-class fireworks). What’s more, the site of the explosion unleashed a CME in our direction.

A CME is a magnetic ‘bubble’ containing high-energy solar particles. When the CME hits Earth’s global magnetic field, it may align just right to generate a geomagnetic storm. Should this happen, we’ll be able to measure the extreme magnetic distortion of the magnetosphere and bright aurorae at high latitudes may result. Aurorae are caused when solar particles are injected into the polar regions via the Earth’s magnetic field — the particles then collide with atmospheric gases, generating a beautiful light display.

This morning’s CME was clocked traveling at a breakneck speed of 600 miles per second — at that rate it should hit Earth in the early hours of Saturday morning (April 13).

Shortly after the M-class flare erupted, a weak solar energetic particle (SEP) event was detected. This “radiation storm” was the result of relativistic particles slamming into the Earth’s upper atmosphere originating from the flare site.

Image: NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013. This image shows a combination of light in wavelengths of 131 and 171 Angstroms. Credit: NASA/SDO

Idiot science? Urban vegetation decreases violent crime but not theft!

April 6, 2013

Correlation and causation again! Correlation does not necessarily mean causation and even real causation may not give any correlation.

The authors are from the Department of Geography and Urban Studies, Temple University, United States. And they get paid for this?

Does vegetation encourage or suppress urban crime? Evidence from Philadelphia, PA, Mary K. Wolfe and Jeremy Mennis, Landscape and Urban Planning, Volume 108, Issues 2–4, November–December 2012, Pages 112–122,

(emphasis added)

AbstractThere is longstanding belief that vegetation encourages crime as it can conceal criminal activity. Other studies, however, have shown that urban residential areas with well-maintained vegetation experience lower rates of certain crime types due to increased surveillance in vegetated spaces as well as the therapeutic effects ascribed to vegetated landscapes. The present research analyzes the association of vegetation with crime in a case study of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. We examine rates of assaults, robberies, burglaries, and thefts in relation to remotely sensed vegetation abundance at the Census tract level. We employ choropleth mapping, correlation, ordinary least squares regression, and spatial econometric modeling to examine the influence of vegetation on various crime types while controlling for tract-level socioeconomic indicators. Results indicate that vegetation abundance is significantly associated with lower rates of assault, robbery, and burglary, but not theft. This research has implications for urban planning policy, especially as cities are moving towards ‘green’ growth plans and must look to incorporate sustainable methods of crime prevention into city planning.

And Discover Magazine comments (comments?)

The explanation, the authors say, is twofold: One, green spaces encourage people to spend more time socially outdoors, which discourages crime. It’s especially helpful for crime control when young and old people mix together in public places. And two, the presence of plants has a therapeutic effect. Vegetation decreases mental fatigue and its associated symptoms, such as irritability and decreased impulse control, both considered to be precursors to violence.

This “plant therapy” mechanism is bolstered by the Philadelphia findings. The most violent of the crimes studied, aggravated assault, was most strongly correlated with a neighborhood’s degree of greenness, while the least violent crime, theft, showed no association. This could indicate that it’s a violent mentality itself that green spaces are discouraging.

That hypothesis needs further study.

And that last line is the giveaway.

No, every idiot hypothesis does not need further study! 

Does the solar cycle impact the global economic cycle?

April 2, 2013

That weather and climate are affected by solar cycles is highly likely even if it is not part of the mainstream climate theories (though I think it is patently obvious). That climate and weather affect food production is clear and that this must impact the economic cycle is not so far fetched. Yet it has never been part of mainstream economic thinking that there will be a connection from the solar cycle to global economic cycles. Back in 1801 William Herschel observed the apparent connection between the sunspot cycles and the price of wheat. Since then many economists have returned at regular intervals to studying the link between the 11 year sunspot cycle and the behaviour of the global economic cycle. It is becoming increasingly clear that the economic cycle is not unconnected with solar cycles but the mechanisms are far from clear.

Mikhail Gorbanev an economist at the IMF has a fascinating new paper that became available last month at the University of Munich. He does add this Caution though!

Caution: This research is not in the “mainstream” of the economic thought. Read at your own risk!

Sunspots, unemployment, and recessions, or Can the solar activity cycle shape the business cycle?,” MPRA Paper 40271, University Library of Munich, Germany. (pdf Gorbanev Business Cycle and solar cycles MPRA_paper_40271)

Gorbanev shows some interesting correlations and  goes on to predict that “For other advanced economies, the upcoming solar maximum also suggests higher chances of recessions. The 3-year period when the recessions are most likely to occur in the G7 countries would run from early 2013 till end-2015”.

Whether there will be a sharp increase in US unemployment after the solar maximum remains to be seen. But it is not so unlikely that the world economy has another 2 – 3 tough years ahead!


Sunspot cycles and US unemployment (Gorbanev 2012)

Sunspot cycles and US unemployment (Gorbanev 2012)


 Over the last 77 years (from 1935), all 7 cyclical maximums of the solar activity overlapped closely with the US recessions, thus predicting (or triggering?) 8 out of 13 recessions officially identified by NBER (including one “double-deep” recession). Over the last 64 years (from 1948), all 6 maximums of the solar activity were preceded by minimums of the US unemployment rate, and the spikes in the unemployment rate followed with lags of 2-3 years. On the world scale, over the last 44 years (for which the data is available), all 4 maximums of the solar activity overlapped with minimums of the unemployment rate in the G7 countries, followed by its spikes within 2-3 years. From 1965, when consistent recession dating is available for all G7 countries, nearly 3/5 of the recessions started in the 3 years around and after the sunspot maximums. Was it a mere coincidence or a part of a broader pattern? This paper explores the correlation between the solar activity cycles (as measured by the number of sunspots on the sun surface) and the timing of recessions in the US and other economies. It finds out that the probability of recessions in G7 countries greatly increased around and after the solar maximums, suggesting that they can cause deterioration in business conditions and trigger recessions. This opens new approach for projecting recessions, which can be applied and tested with regard to the next solar maximum in 2013.

Prof. Peter A. Ziegler: Solar effects drive climate change not CO2

March 14, 2013
Peter Ziegler

Peter Ziegler: image The Geological Society

Prof. Peter Ziegler (b. 1928) is a Swiss geologist  and Titular Professor of Global Geology at the Geological-Paleontological Institute, University of Basel. He is a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences, the Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences and the Academia Europaea. His presentation on the “Mechanisms of Climate Change” from February this year is pretty self-contained and self explanatory and my comments would only be superfluous.

Climate Change Ziegler 2013 (pdf)

I reproduce his conclusions slide below:

  • Climate change during industrial times can be fully explained by natural processes
  • During the last 550 Million years major natural climate changes involved large fluctuations in temperature and atmospheric CO2 concentrations
  • Apart from orbital forcing and the distribution of continents and oceans, variations in solar activity and the galactic cosmic ray flux controlled climate changes during the geological past and probably still do so
  • Despite rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations we may experience during the coming decades a serious temperature decline akin to the Maunder Minimum due to decreasing solar activity
  • There is overwhelming evidence that Temperature forces the Carbon Cycle and not vice-versa, as postulated by IPCC
  • IPCC underestimates the effects of direct and indirect solar climate forcing but overestimates CO2 forcing by assuming unrealistic positive temperature feedbacks from a concomitant water vapor and cloud increase
  • The IPCC consensus on anthropogenic CO2 emissions causing Global Warming cannot be reconciled with basic data and is therefore challenged

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