Posts Tagged ‘Interglacial’

Climate science (global warming) has lost the plot

August 3, 2015

When (not if) the next little ice age or even the end of this interglacial begins, we will first observe it by cooler summers – not initially by colder winters. While the “climate scientists” are chasing non-existent links between man-made carbon dioxide emissions and “global temperature”, they are reduced to data tampering and cooling the past. There is not a shred of evidence but only much conjecture that man-made emissions are of any significance.

They cannot predict the future so they are rewriting history. Every year the temperatures of the past are adjusted downwards. No model forecast of global temperature has come anywhere near predicting actual development. When the models don’t fit, it is time to dump the models. “Climate science” is now two decades out of date. Today Obama will announce another round of restrictions on the climate bogey-man – anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions – even though his plans will have no impact on climate and will only make life more expensive.

The primary “forcing” or feed-back loop which will set off the little ice age or glacial conditions will be a reduction of ice melt over a few summers and followed by an increase of ice accumulation, which in turn will increase the solar energy reflected directly back into space. That will further reduce the ice melt in subsequent years. Cold winters and an increase of rate of ice growth is not required to set this off. Current, “normal” rates of ice growth in the winter are quite sufficient to reproduce the little ice age or even the return to glacial conditions provided that the summer melt is reduced and reducing. A large volcanic eruption with much dust ejected could well be the key factor to enhance the “forcing”. A year or two or three without summers in the higher latitudes could well be the key. It is probably of more significance in the northern hemisphere with its larger land mass which would support the direct growth of surface ice. In the southern hemisphere there is no reason that Australia could not also be covered with glacial ice sheets but more sea-ice would have to be created first. That would require much colder winters and not just cooler summers to trigger the change. It is not the climate near the equator or the tropics which controls. It is the regions above 50N and below 50S where we will first see the indications. It is the combination of reduced ice-melt followed by increased ice accumulation which will be critical.

Here in Sweden it has been a miserable July. The Finnish summer has been the coldest on record – so far. It has been the coldest July in most of Australia in twenty years. Iceland has seen snow in summer which is not that common. Scotland is said to have seen its worst summer in 40 years. Montana, Wyoming and Idaho have seen anomalous summer snow. The Greenland ice melt started very late and seems to already have come to an end. “Freak” snow storms have come to the Rockies in July. Over 40 people and 250,000 alpacas died in Peru in a cold wave and Chile declared cold emergencies..

“Global temperature” is not a real thing. It is an artefact, a number calculated by massaging and adjusting real data. No matter what the self-styled “climate scientists” believe and worship, “climate change” which is not manifested as changes to local weather and which can actually be experienced probably does not exit. We are now in for 2 – 3 decades of cooling which will include a little ice age. But over the next 1,000 years we will also be back into glacial conditions.

Right now, I experience more indicators of cooling than of any warming.

And when the cooling does start – as it will – we shall be very thankful for the more than 1,000 years of fossil fuel reserves we have.

Obsessive fixation on global warming leads to unpreparedness for an ice age

September 14, 2014

This is a postscript to my previous post about the inevitability of this interglacial giving way to glacial conditions, Here Professor Bob Carter addresses how the obsessive fixation with “gentle” global warming leads to an unpreparedness for global cooling in a letter to The Australian:

Heading for ice age

GRAHAM Lloyd has reported on the Bureau of Meteorology’s capitulation to scientific criticism that it should publish an accounting of the corrections it makes to temperature records (“Bureau warms to transparency over adjusted records”, 12/9). Corrections which, furthermore, act to reinforce the bureau’s dedication to a prognosis of future dangerous global warming, by turning cooling temperature trends into warming ones — a practice also known to occur in the US, Britain and New Zealand.

Meanwhile, we have a report by Sue Neales that the size of our grain harvest remains in doubt following severe frosts in southern NSW killing large areas of early wheat crops and also damaging wheat and canola crops in South Australia and Victoria (“Trifecta of calamities to deplete. crop harvest”, 12/9)

Is it unreasonable to be surprised that none of your writers, much less the government, has noticed that leading solar astrophysicists, such as Habibullo Abdussamatov from Pulkovo Observatory in St Petersburg, have for years been commenting on the declining activity of the sun?

These scientists are projecting a significant cooling over the next three decades, and perhaps even the occurrence of another little ice age.

Obsessed as they are with a gentle global warming trend that stopped late last century, should the expected solar cooling eventuate, policy makers will rue the day they failed to heed the advice of independent scientists on climate change issues.

Bob Carter, Townsville, Qld


When this interglacial ends ….

June 7, 2013

This interglacial will end.

It may take another 100 years or 5,000 or it may already have ended. From whenever the end is reckoned  it could take about 4,000 years for full glacial conditions to set in.


This interglacial will end

The ice sheets will advance again. New land will be exposed as sea levels fall – up to 120m.

The land mass of the world with the reduced sea levels might look like this (

world map ice age image National Geophysical Data Center at NOAA

world map ice age image National Geophysical Data Center at NOAA

Geography will change. Islands will expand. Some seas will disappear as water gets locked up in the expanding ice sheets.  Greenland will expand. Siberia will connect to North America again. The United Kingdom will once again rejoin the continent. Indonesia and Australia will be extremely close. Japan will no longer be islands. The Baltic Sea will not exist. The Persian Gulf will disappear. Across the world coastlines will be “pushed out”. Ancient coastal city sites – long submerged – will reappear. The ice sheets will expand and will drastically reduce populations above 55 °N. The global population would have stabilised and may even fall. Populations will migrate. Nation states will  see their boundaries changing – physically not just by war. No doubt there will be new human conflicts as populations shift – though the shifts will be over hundreds of years and quite gradual in our terms. Average global temperatures will be about 2 – 4°C colder than today.

But this time the ice sheets will not stop humans from utilising the resources under some of the ice sheets. As during the last glacial period, human innovation and engineering will flourish and reach new heights as the challenges are met. New science and new technologies will appear. Art will take new forms. A new wave of exploration will occur – this time into space. And through all of this our energy needs will increase.

Time line of prehistoric inventions (pdf)

But it is the availability of abundant energy which will be the deciding factor, which allows growth to continue and which allows the continued  improvement of the human condition. And this energy will primarily be fossil energy and nuclear energy.  It will be nuclear energy for large central plants (> 1000 MW), fossil energy (coal, and gas) for medium sized plants (100 – 1000 MW)  and gas for municipal and domestic applications. Transportation will – largely as now – be electric or oil-based though the proportion of electric (charged from “cheap” nuclear power) vehicles will increase. Solar and wind and wave and tidal power will have their little place but will – as now – be of small impact.

It is fossil and nuclear power which will allow humanity to meet these new challenges. They will be a necessity for humans to flourish. Carbon dioxide emissions – as now – will be irrelevant. It is in the development of small nuclear, energy storage and more efficient gas- winning and utilisation that we should be concentrating.

The next 100,000 years

June 1, 2013

In my other blog I try to address the life and times of the last 6,000 generations but trying to look forward to the next 6,000 is a fascinating thought experiment.

I was looking at the history of glacials and interglacials and just thinking that it was was terribly “unfair” that while I could imagine the future to my mind’s content, I could never know it. At least for even the distant past, we can look at surviving clues and by the logic that the past must have led to the present we can fill in the gaps and imagine what must have happened. The present constrains the past and helps to keep the imagination within narrow bounds. But for the future, the present  provides a starting point  and natural laws must also constrain any development of an unfolding future. But there are more natural laws we don’t know about than we do. And we haven’t a clue about all that we don’t know that we don’t know.

But I am still free to imagine what the next 100,000 years may bring.

As best we can judge, interglacials (defined as being when temperatures are higher than or equal to those at present)  have lasted upto 28,000 years and some seem to have been as short as 4,000 years. However most seem to last around 13,000 years. This interglacial period will surely end – whether within a 1000 years or in 10,000 – and a new glacial period will ensue.


But the next glacial will be different for humans and primarily because we have access to “abundant energy” (mainly based on fossil fuels and nuclear energy).


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