“Right Wing” Of Merkel’s Party Stuns Country: Climate Science “A Sort Of World Rescue Circus”!

A tsunami of outrage swept across Germany right after President Donald Trump announced dropping out of the Paris Accord (and not to transfer billions of taxpayer money over to the UN each year).

It appears the President’s bold and courageous move is leading to potentially dangerous pockets of energy policy and climate science uprising in Germany.

A reader just pointed out something a bit stunning: Germany’s flagship ARD television, the country’s version of the BBC, reported here how a group of conservative politicians from Angela Merkel’s CDU party known as the Berliner Kreis has just voiced its strong opposition to the party’s climate and energy policy course.

A group from Angela Merkel’s CDU party recently released its “Climate and Energy Political Demands”, calling for a science and energy policy “without ideology”, an end to “moral extortion”, and an exit from the “climate saving circus”, pdf here.

According to the ARD report, the group of conservatives is disputing the “‘solitary role’of the greenhouse effect in global warming’ – and is demanding a change in direction in the chancellor’s climate policy“.

The Berliner Kreis, led by Philipp Lengsfeld and Sylvia Pantel, issued an official declaration (German), see pdf here.

“World rescue circus”

The Berliner Kreis declaration demands a return to science “without ideology”, a “fact-based” discussion — one free of “moral extortion” –, and calls for a “reform of the IPCC”, which “has not been as scientifically sound as an advising body needs to be”.

The Berliner Kreis declaration adds that the science must not become “a sort of world rescue circus”.

The Christian conservative group also casts Germany’s CO2 reductions policy into question, noting that so far the country has cut back its CO2 emissions by less than half a billion tonnes while the rest of the plant has increased it by 14 billion tonnes, i.e. 30 times more than what the country has saved.

Germany’s CO2 emissions represent only 2% of the globe’s output, but its energy policy has been 100% pain.

Alinsky-type target?

Now that the Berliner Kreis position has become public, already it has come in the cross-hairs of major media outlets, setting off a wave of reports, e.g. here, here and here.

It remains to be seen what the real ARD intent of their report was: Whether to show that there is dissent in on the climate topic in Germany and that policy needs to take a step back, or if it is to identify and single out unwanted voices Alinsky style (Rule 13).

Lately the approach used by the media and entrenched establishment in Germany concerning unwanted dissenting voices on sensitive issues – such as Europe, immigration and climate – has followed the labelling formula of: dissent = extremism = Nazi. Many feel intimidated by it and thus are afraid to speak up.

What becomes of the dissident Berliner Kreis will remain a question. Expect Merkel to mobilize forces to shut them up, and down. The Berliner Kreis would be well-advised to quickly forge channels and networks with international dissenting groups, as they may be about to find out what the real price of civil courage is.

German publicist Dirk Maxeiner here, who knows first-hand the cost of civil courage, applauds the move by the group of CDU dissenters, commenting (with sarcasm):

A group of CDU parliamentarians that calls itself the ‘Berliner Kreis’ dares to think for itself on the climate issue. The Tagesschau comments on this atrocity with the headline: ‘CDU right wingers attack Merkel’s climate direction.’ Skepticism, thought, realism, facts – all right wing.”


NASA Head Ducks Debate, Concedes No Rise In Hurricanes…Says We’ll Have To Wait For It!

John Stossel conducted an unusual interview, one where the head of NASA GISS, Gavin Schmidt, refused to appear together on the set with skeptic Dr. Roy Spencer, climatologist at the University of Alabama.

According to Stossel about a dozen scientists had been invited to debate Spencer, but they refused to do so on air.

Great uncertainty

At the start Spencer tells Stossel that scientists in his opinion do not have a clue at this stage just how much of the warming can be attributed to man, saying it could be 10% or 90%.

Next a fidgety Gavin Schmidt appeared, insisting that the climate signatures of methane and CO2 “are very very clear“.

He then absurdly claimed that humans built its cities and infrastructure near the sea with the assumption that climate would not change and because “we didn’t expect the sea level to rise“.

Concedes Obama was mistaken

Surprisingly, at the 3:30 mark, Schmidt even conceded (reluctantly) that President Obama had been mistaken when he claimed hurricanes were increasing. When pressed by Stossel, the NASA GISS head was forced to admit that hurricane activity has in fact been showing no trend.

Problem is in the future

The inconvenient chart presented by Stossel actually suggests hurricane activity has been decreasing, which seemed a bit embarrassing to the NASA scientist. But Schmidt insisted the problem remained in the future (i.e. models): “Now what’s going on in the future, that is what we are concerned about.”

Ducks debate

When asked why not stay on the set and debate Spencer, Schmidt said: “I’m not interested.” And walked away.

Spencer returned and summed up telling viewers that the proposed green energy solutions were unrealistic and expensive, and that they would be far more damaging and deadly to the poor than the problem of climate change itself.

CO2 actually a good thing

Spencer told viewers that it is amazing how little CO2 there is in the atmosphere: “My long-term prediction is that eventually we are going to realize that more CO2 in the atmosphere is actually a good thing,” Spencer said.

Spencer ended the interview by telling that many scientists in fact agree with him, but that they are afraid to speak up about it for fear of losing funding.


3 Chemists Conclude CO2 Greenhouse Effect Is ‘Unreal’, Violates Laws Of Physics, Thermodynamics

New Paper Uses Physics Laws To

Disassemble Greenhouse Theory

Eight years ago, 2 physicists published a comprehensive 115-page scientific paper entitled “Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics” in the International Journal of Modern Physics.

Gerlich and Tscheuschner, 2009

Buttressed by a reference list of over 200 scientific publications, the authors addressed the merits of commonly held greenhouse “conjectures” as they relate to the laws of physics.

“By showing that (a) there are no common physical laws between the warming phenomenon in glass houses and the fictitious atmospheric greenhouse effects, (b) there are no calculations to determine an average surface temperature of a planet, (c) the frequently mentioned difference of 33°C is a meaningless number calculated wrongly, (d) the formulas of cavity radiation are used inappropriately, (e) the assumption of a radiative balance is unphysical, (f) thermal conductivity and friction must not be set to zero, the atmospheric greenhouse conjecture is falsified.”

From pages 35 to 44, Gerlich and Tscheuschner critiqued 14 different “fictitious” manifestations of the greenhouse effect theory as they have appeared over the course of the last several decades.

In a newly-published scientific paper, meteorologist and physical chemist Dr. Martin Hertzberg (and two other chemists) provide a condensed update to the Gerlich and Tscheuschner appraisal of the theoretical greenhouse effect.

Hertzberg  and colleagues also apply the standard laws of physics to critique 6 current theoretical explanations for the role of greenhouse gases (CO2) in presumably keeping the Earth 15°C warmer than it would otherwise be.

Included below is an abridged, less-technical version of the (pay-walled) paper in an ostensibly user-friendly format.

It should be noted that the conclusions may be controversial even for skeptics of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) alarm.  That’s because the vast majority of climate skeptics at least accept the basic tenets of the greenhouse effect theory.  Instead, the existing skepticism focuses on the climate’s sensitivity to CO2 forcing in particular (low vs. high), not on whether the greenhouse effect as conventionally expressed is “real” or meets the standards applied by the laws of physics.

It is widely assumed that that the common understanding of how greenhouse gases operate in the climate system (the atmosphere and oceans) is both real and supported by scientific observation and physical tests.  This paper, like Gerlich and Tscheuschner (2009), may challenge this assumption.

Role of greenhouse gases in climate change

Hertzberg et al., 2017

This study examines the various definitions of the greenhouse effect for compatibility with the laws of physics.

Definition 1

A greenhouse is a glass/plastic enclosure, warmed by sunlight, facilitating plant growth. Several definitions argue that the effect in the atmosphere is analogous to a greenhouse. It is stated that sunlight transmitted into an enclosure through transparent glass warms the interior of the enclosure, increasing the Infra Red (IR) radiation. As glass is partly opaque to IR radiation, it cannot freely pass outward through the glass and is thus retained within the enclosure. Several definitions infer the radiation is being ‘trapped’ and it is argued that atmospheric gases such as CO2 are analogous to the glass pane action of a greenhouse and this serves to ‘trap’ IR radiation within the atmosphere and obstruct radiative cooling.

The Critique

An early test of the ‘trapped’ radiation theory was conducted by R. W. Wood.  He constructed two enclosures, one covered with a glass plate and the other covered with an IR transmitting rock salt plate. When adjusted so that both were exposed to the same solar input radiation, they both reached the same temperature of 55°C with ‘scarcely a difference of one degree between the temperatures of the two enclosures’. His experiment clearly showed that it was the presence of the enclosure itself that enabled the warming. Therefore, it is the heat generated by absorbed sunlight that becomes ‘trapped’. In the absence of an enclosure, the warmed air near the ground would rise by buoyancy and be replaced by cooler air from the surroundings thus cooling it. This natural convective cooling process is restricted and suppressed by the enclosure. It is the same process that generates a cooling afternoon sea breeze on a beach with cooler air from the ocean replacing rising warmer air over land. To argue that an open gaseous atmosphere confines in the way that the top and sides of a greenhouse enclosure does is not valid. To the contrary, a gaseous atmosphere is conducive to the convective cooling that occurs in the absence of an enclosure. It could be argued that CO2 along with the other gaseous components of the atmosphere in fact helps to cool the Earth’s surface.

Definition 2

Another common theme among the various descriptions of the effect is that the ‘greenhouse gases’ serve as a ‘blanket’ keeping the earth warm.

The Critique

A simple experiment to test the validity of this argument is to appear naked outside on a cold evening and observe how long the blanket of ‘greenhouse gases’ in the atmosphere keeps you warm. Air warmed by body heat rises by buoyancy and is replaced by cooler air from the surroundings, causing rapid cooling down and shivering. An actual blanket is a flexible insulating enclosure that reduces the rate at which body heat is lost to the surroundings. Thus the atmosphere is more given to being an agent for cooling by way of natural convection.

Definition 3

A regular description of the ‘greenhouse gas’ heating mechanism is that referred to as ‘back radiation’. Atmospheric gases such as CO2, having a dipole moment, absorb some incoming solar radiation and some of the IR radiation the Earth’s surface radiates toward free space. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, ‘re-radiated energy in the IR portion of the spectrum is trapped within the atmosphere keeping the surface temperature warm’. This ‘trapping’ is assumed to occur as the surface radiates to the atmosphere and the atmosphere radiates back to the surface.

The Critique

The radiation emitted from the warmer surface absorbed by the colder atmosphere is readily detected by orbiting satellites. However, back radiation from the colder atmosphere to the warmer surface heating the surface further violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

There are two problems with that amount of down-welling radiation: the atmosphere is not a blackbody with unit emissivity and equally, is not radiating toward a receptive absorber. Yet it is depicted as radiating heat downwards to the warmer Earth’s surface in direct violation of the Second Law.

The flow of heat is always from the hotter surface to the colder surface as required by the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Nowhere in the radiation field between the two surfaces is the flux of radiant energy equal to that which either surface would emit if they were facing a complete void. Thus, the simple use of the Stefan-Boltzmann term, δT4 to characterize the emission from a source of radiation in the manner that depends only on the temperature of the source without considering the temperature of the surroundings receiving the radiation, is a misapplication of the equation and the notion that a colder source can transfer radiant energy to a warmer object is a misapplication of the Stefan-Boltzmann equation and a violation of the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

It would therefore be clear that the application of the Stefan-Boltzmann term to simply characterize radiant energy being transferred from an object to its surroundings without reference to the conditions of the surroundings in radiative contact with that object is a misapplication of the equation.

It would be incorrect to talk in terms of radiation exchanging, since transfer occurs only from warmer to cooler matter, from higher energy level to lower energy level.

Definition 4

A proposed new definition of the greenhouse theory to overcome the objections raised against warming by back radiation argues that IR absorbing ‘greenhouse gases’ hinder radiative transport from the Earth’s surface upwards and aid to keep the surface warm and warmer than it would otherwise be in the absence of those gases.

The Critique

The definition ignores the fact that those gases themselves emit radiation to free space adding to radiation loss from the system.  Radiation loss to free space from the earth’s surface and its atmosphere is essentially the same with or without presence of absorbing gases for the following reasons: the cooling by radiation to free space is a one-step process; in the presence of an atmosphere, it is a two-step process with the same loss, with or without, the absorbing and emitting gaseous atmosphere. When talking about radiation, it is absorbed radiation or emitted radiation that is being considered.

Definition 5

In many of the various definitions, attempt is made to prove that ‘greenhouse gases’ in the atmosphere keep the Earth warm, warmer than it would otherwise be in the absence of an atmosphere as conveyed by the following [enviropedia.org] quote:

“This process (radiation trapping) makes the temperature rise in the atmosphere just as it does in the greenhouse. This is the Earth’s natural greenhouse effect and keeps the Earth 33°C warmer than it would (otherwise) be without an atmosphere, at an average of 15°C.”

The Critique

Logically that argues that if the Earth had no atmosphere, its average temperature would be -18°C rather than its current temperature of 15°C. Such a temperature is based on calculated ones, that is ‘otherwise’ ones. The calculations arise from several mistaken assumptions. The most obvious one diminishes the solar radiation input by 37% from the Earth’s cloud albedo while simultaneously taking no account of any lessening of the IR radiation emitted to free space by the same blocking clouds. Equally, all IR radiating entities on the surface are assumed to be blackbodies with unit emissivity. The calculation that yields the -18°C temperature is obviously mistaken. The question is considered and covered in detail in the ‘Cold Earth Fallacy’.

Further argument used to illustrate the greenhouse effect of CO2 is the atmosphere of Venus, which is almost entirely [965,000 ppm] CO2. Based upon its distance to the Sun relative to that of the Earth, and using the Earth’s average temperature, Venus surface temperature should be about 280°C. Yet the measured value is about 465°C. This difference is attributed to the strong greenhouse effect of its higher CO2 concentration. The difference is more correctly attributable to Venus’ high surface pressure and the adiabatic compression of the atmosphere adjacent to its surface. Venus’ surface temperature would be just as warm if its atmosphere consisted of any gas whose compressibility was the same as that of CO2. The temperatures in the Mohave Desert and the Dead Sea are higher than the temperatures of surrounding areas at sea level. That is not a greenhouse effect but is caused by adiabatic compression of the higher pressures at their elevations below sea level.

Definition 6

All atmospheric gases that are believed to be ‘greenhouse gases’ absorb IR radiation emitted from the Earth’s surface. Their absorption spectra are well known and it is relatively easy to calculate the radiation flux, those gases absorb from the Earth’s IR emission.

The Critique

The problem arises when those radiation fluxes are translated into a resultant temperature rise while ignoring the fact that atmospheric gas is being simultaneously cooled by radiating to the unlimited sink of free space.


In one of science’s first ‘thought experiments’ Pierre Prevost (1751–1839) conjectured that a hot body absorbed less radiation from a cold body than the reverse, and that both would eventually reach the same temperature. Thus, the theory of radiant exchanges came into being, a view that predated the more thorough understanding of the Laws of Thermodynamics that came later. Yet it is noted that aspects of Prevost’s 200-year-old theory continue to be applied in regard to ‘net flow’ of heat – a concept that radiation flows both downhill and uphill. The latter flow is a violation of the Second Law, which informs us that a hot body can absorb no radiation from a cold body to make it warmer still.

Radiative greenhouse supporters have theorized a blackbody as an all-absorbing entity, capable of absorbing and retaining its own radiation to elevate its temperature and have used radiant exchanges in support of their arguments.

[S]o far no way has been found to be able to readily transpose or correlate experiments conducted in the contained, static, isothermal and isobaric conditions of a laboratory to the great vastness of earth’s atmosphere.


The various stated definitions of the greenhouse effect have been subjected to the rigorous scrutiny and application of the fundamental laws of physics and thermodynamics. They were found to be unreal, and unless some new definition can be put forward that satisfies and complies with those laws, it can only be concluded that the concept of a ‘greenhouse gas’ or a ‘greenhouse effect’ has not been demonstrated and is thus without merit.

New Study Sees New Health Risk To Humans From Wind Turbines: “Micro-Seismicity”

German wind energy protest site windwahn.de (windmadness.de) tells us of a new study: “Numerical modelling of micro-seismic and infrasound noise radiated by a wind turbine” and the possible the effects on human health.

It turns out that not only infrasound have negative impacts on humans, but perhaps so do the micro-seismic waves that turbine vibrations generate in the ground. In the new study, the Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT), in partnership with University Patras of Greece, examined the micro-seismic and infrasound noise radiated by a wind turbine.

Higher levels of noise inside a house

According to the study’s highlights, modeling of the operation of a wind turbine under strong winds generated micro-seismic waves that would cause annoyance for neighbors. 2D simulations were performed for a specific geometry and a structure located 500 m far from a wind turbine. The most important conclusions:

(i) the micro-seismicity creates higher levels of noise inside a house than that of the airborne noise radiated by a wind turbine and

(ii) bedrock being in low depths underneath the soil has an additional contribution to the generated acoustic noise by the induced micro-seismicity.”

The study also found that micro-seismic waves impact the measurements of seismological centers that were even 15 km away from a wind turbine farm and that the “larger disturbances occurred at a frequency range of 5-10 Hz“.

The abstract of the study:

Infrasound, low frequency noise and soil vibrations produced by large wind turbines might disturb the comfort of nearby structures and residents. In addition repowering close to urban areas produces some fears to the nearby residents that the level of disturbance may increase. Due to wind loading, the foundation of a wind turbine interacts with the soil and creates micro-seismic surface waves that propagate for long distances and they are able to influence adversely sensitive measurements conducted by laboratories located far from the excitation point. A numerical study on the creation and propagation of those waves to the surrounding area is the subject of the present work. Besides, the contribution of those waves to airborne sound generated by the soil-air interaction is also investigated. All numerical simulations are performed with the aid of the Boundary Element Method (BEM), which is ideal for solving such problems since it takes automatically into account the radiation conditions of the waves and thus only the soil-foundation interface and the free surface of the surrounding soil are needed to be discretized. Foundation and soil are considered as linearly elastic materials with interfacial bonding. The frequency domain Helmholtz equation is employed for the simulation of acoustic waves. Numerical results dealing with the airborne and soil borne noise propagation and attenuation are presented and disturbances that might be caused to nearby and far-field structures are discussed.”

Potential health risks

Windwahn.de advises of the potential health risks at their site:

The determined frequency range of the largest disturbances found in the the study of 5 – 10 Hz, according to KIT University Patras are within the natural frequencies of, for example, the following organs:

Abdomen (4-10 Hz), general poor feeling (4-9 Hz), chest (5-7 Hz), impact on breathing (4-8 Hz), shoulder area (4-5 Hz), bent knee (2 Hz), arm (5-10 Hz),

Spine: (10-12 Hz)

Dr. Amanda Harry, UK, as to G. Rasmussen, DK and the Robert Koch Institute and ISO Standards 2631

Many of the described illness symptoms influenced by acoustic noise are found in the above mentioned organs.”

So not only is infrasound a problem for human health, but also the ground vibrations produced by vibrating wind turbines are likely to impact humans as well.

So far not a single German media outlet has reported on the findings. Not exactly the thing the public should know about in these times of wind energy profiteering.

Merkel’s Phony CO2 Policy… U.S. REDUCTIONS Making Huge Progress As Germany Does Nothing

Chancellor Angela Merkel is perturbed by the USA’s unruly new leader, President Donald Trump, who demanded deadbeat Germany pay up big on NATO. But what really took the cake was the President strongly signaling his rejection of the Paris climate accord. That was just too much to take.

In terse comments Merkel has even called into question the transatlantic relationship, saying that the US could no longer be counted on as a reliable partner. Merkel and Germany’s leaders are offended, and have unfriended Trump.

What is strange is that the mainstream media and leading climate action proponents like Merkel all pretend that Germany is a responsible leader in cutting back CO2 emissions, and even claim that big emitters, like China and India, are all onboard in curbing CO2 emissions, and that is only the USA that is the big, rogue CO2 sinner.

However, when we look at the facts, we see that Merkel and the German climate activists are truly living a fake reality. 

The real reality is that Germany has done virtually nothing at all to reduce its CO2 emissions over the past years.

No GHG emissions reductions in 8 years!

And despite all of Merkel’s pontification and Trump-scolding on climate protection, her own country, Germany, has itself not cut back on greenhouse gas emissions in 8 years!

German greenhouse gas emissions (CO2 equivalent in millions of tonnes) have not fallen since 2009. Source: Umweltbundesamt.

Last year German CO2 emissions in fact rose by some 4 million tonnes, from 902 million in 2015 to an estimated 906 million tonnes in 2016.

And Merkel has had it with Trump? She’s the last who should be preaching. On GHG emissions, Merkel is a phony.

Note that Germany’s drop since 1990 comes mostly as a result of shutting down former communist-run East Germany, after the fall of the Iron Curtain.

Germany is also expected to totally miss its 2020 reductions target of 40%. So it’s peculiar that the country’s leaders would think it’s fitting to go around lecturing others on climate protection.

US in fact has far outperformed Germany

The real progress on CO2 reductions has in fact come the USA (thanks to fracking), and here we are not talking pocket change. The following chart shows how much US CO2 emissions have fallen: from 6 billion tonnes of CO2 annually to under 5.3 billion tonnes in 2015.

graph of U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide emissions, as explained in the article text

Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Monthly Energy Review, via here.

This means the US has cut carbon dioxide emissions by over 700 million tonnes since 2005 – a 12% drop. That drop almost amounts to Germany’s total annual CO2 emissions (796 million tonnes).

Election year bashing

To keep things in perspective, it’s important to remember that it’s an election year in Germany, and right now there is a race to see who can bash America and its democratically elected President the most.

And now that German leaders and media have grown tired of bashing Russia, Turkey, Great Britain, Hungary, Poland, Greece, etc. they now feel compelled to go after the United States, its President, and especially the deplorable Americans who elected him. Not surprising Germany is having a row with a host of countries. Also read GWPF post here.

Intolerant to other views

Germany’s leaders and elitist class indeed have a difficult time accepting views that differ from their own. And when it comes to German politics, throwing the baby out with the bath water has a long tradition. The truth here is that it is perhaps Germany that is not a reliable partner, and not the other way around.

80 Graphs From 58 New (2017) Papers Invalidate Claims Of Unprecedented Global-Scale Modern Warming

Scientists Increasingly Discarding

‘Hockey Stick’ Temperature Graphs

Now Updated: 300 Non-Hockey Stick Graphs

“[W]hen it comes to disentangling natural variability from anthropogenically affected variability the vast majority of the instrumental record may be biased.”  — Büntgen et al., 2017

Last year there were at least 60 peer-reviewed papers published in scientific journals demonstrating that Today’s Warming Isn’t Global, Unprecedented, Or Remarkable.
Just within the last 5 months, 58 more papers and 80 new graphs have been published that continue to undermine the popularized conception of a slowly cooling Earth temperature history followed by a dramatic hockey-stick-shaped uptick, or an especially unusual global-scale warming during modern times.
Yes, some regions of the Earth have been warming in recent decades or at some point in the last 100 years.  Some regions have been cooling for decades at a time.  And many regions have shown no significant net changes or trends in either direction relative to the last few hundred to thousands of years.
Succinctly, then, scientists publishing in peer-reviewed journals have increasingly affirmed that there is nothing historically unprecedented or remarkable about today’s climate when viewed in the context of long-term natural variability.

Büntgen et al., 2017

“Spanning the period 1186-2014 CE, the new reconstruction reveals overall warmer conditions around 1200 and 1400, and again after ~1850. … Little agreement is found with climate model simulations that consistently overestimate recent summer warming and underestimate pre-industrial temperature changes. … [W]hen it comes to disentangling natural variability from anthropogenically affected variability the vast majority of the instrumental record may be biased. …

Abrantes et al., 2017

The transition from warm to colder climatic conditions occurs around 1300 CE associated with the Wolf solar minimum. The coldest SSTs are detected between 1350 and 1850 CE, on Iberia during the well-known Little Ice Age (LIA) (Bradley and Jones, 1993), with the most intense cooling episodes related with other solar minima events, and major volcanic forcing and separated by intervals of relative warmth (e.g. (Crowley and Unterman, 2013; Solanki et al., 2004; Steinhilber et al., 2012; Turner et al., 2016; Usoskin et al., 2011). During the 20th century, the southern records show unusually large decadal scale SST oscillations in the context of the last 2 millennia, in particular after the mid 1970’s, within the Great Solar Maximum (1940 – 2000 (Usoskin et al., 2011)) and the “greater salinity anomaly” event in the northern Atlantic (Dickson et al., 1988), or yet the higher global temperatures of the last 1.4 ky detected by (Ahmed et al., 2013).”

Werner et al., 2017

Deng et al., 2017

The results indicate that the climate of the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA, AD 900–1300) was similar to that of the Current Warm Period (CWP, AD 1850–present) … As for the Little Ice Age (LIA, AD 1550–1850), the results from this study, together with previous data from the Makassar Strait, indicate a cold and wet period compared with the CWP and the MCA in the western Pacific. The cold LIA period agrees with the timing of the Maunder sunspot minimum and is therefore associated with low solar activity.”

Chapanov et al., 2017

“A good agreement exists between the decadal cycles of LOD [length of day], MSL [mean sea level], climate and solar indices whose periods are between 12-13, 14-16, 16-18 and 28-33 years.”

Williams et al., 2017

“Reconstructed SSTs significantly warmed 1.1°C … from 1660s to 1800 (rate of change: 0.008°C/year), followed by a significant cooling of 0.8°C …  until 1840 (rate of change: 0.02°C/year), then a significant warming of 0.8°C from 1860 until the end of reconstruction in 2007 (rate of change: 0.005°C/year).” [The amplitude of sea surface temperature warming and cooling was higher and more rapid from the 1660s to 1800 than from 1860-2007.]
‘In fact, the SST reconstruction significantly co-varied with a reconstruction of solar irradiance [Lean, 2000] on the 11-year periodicity only from ~1745 to 1825. In addition, the reconstructed SSTs were cool during the period of lower than usual solar irradiance called the Maunder minimum (1645–1715) but then warmed and cooled during the Dalton minimum (1795–1830), a second period of reduced solar irradiance. … The Dalton solar minimum and increased volcanic activity in the early 1800s could explain the decreasing SSTs from 1800 to 1850.”

Stenni et al., 2017

“A recent effort to characterize Antarctic and sub-Antarctic climate variability during the last 200 years also concluded that most of the trends observed since satellite climate monitoring began in 1979 CE cannot yet be distinguished from natural (unforced) climate variability (Jones et al., 2016), and are of the opposite sign [cooling, not warming] to those produced by most forced climate model simulations over the same post-1979 CE interval. … (1) Temperatures over the Antarctic continent show an overall cooling trend during the period from 0 to 1900CE, which appears strongest in West Antarctica, and (2) no continent-scale warming of Antarctic temperature is evident in the last century.”

Li et al., 2017

Demezhko et al., 2017

“GST [ground surface temperature] and SHF [surface heat flux] histories differ substantially in shape and chronology. Heat flux changes ahead temperature changes by 500–1000 years.”

Luoto and Nevalainen, 2017

Li et al., 2017

“The main driving forces behind the Holocene climatic changes in the LYR [Lower Yangtze Region, East China] area are likely summer solar insolation associated with tropical or subtropical macro-scale climatic circulations such as the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), Western Pacific Subtropical High (WPSH), and El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO).”

Mayewski et al., 2017

Rydval et al., 2017

“[T]he recent summer-time warming in Scotland is likely not unique when compared to multi-decadal warm periods observed in the 1300s, 1500s, and 1730s“

Reynolds et al., 2017

Rosenthal et al., 2017

“Here we review proxy records of intermediate water temperatures from sediment cores and corals in the equatorial Pacific and northeastern Atlantic Oceans, spanning 10,000 years beyond the instrumental record. These records suggests that intermediate waters [0-700 m] were 1.5-2°C warmer during the Holocene Thermal Maximum than in the last century. Intermediate water masses cooled by 0.9°C from the Medieval Climate Anomaly to the Little Ice Age. These changes are significantly larger than the temperature anomalies documented in the instrumental record. The implied large perturbations in OHC and Earth’s energy budget are at odds with very small radiative forcing anomalies throughout the Holocene and Common Era. … The records suggest that dynamic processes provide an efficient mechanism to amplify small changes in insolation [surface solar radiation] into relatively large changes in OHC.”

Li et al., 2017

“We suggest that solar activity may play a key role in driving the climatic fluctuations in NC [North China] during the last 22 centuries, with its quasi ∼100, 50, 23, or 22-year periodicity clearly identified in our climatic reconstructions. … It has been widely suggested from both climate modeling and observation data that solar activity plays a key role in driving late Holocene climatic fluctuations by triggering global temperature variability and atmospheric dynamical circulation

Goursaud et al., 2017

Guillet et al., 2017

Wilson et al., 2017

Tegzes et al., 2017

Our sortable-silt time series show prominent multi-decadal to multi-centennial variability, but no clear long-term trend over the past 4200 years. … [O]ur findings indicate that variations in the strength of the main branch of the Atlantic Inflow may not necessarily translate into proportional changes in northward oceanic heat transport in the eastern Nordic Seas.”

Tejedor et al., 2017

Fernández-Fernández et al., 2017

Cai and Liu et al., 2017

“2003– 2009 was the warmest period in the reconstruction. 1970– 2000 was colder than the last stage of the Little Ice Age (LIA).”

Köse et al., 2017

“The reconstruction is punctuated by a temperature increase during the 20th century; yet extreme cold and warm events during the 19th century seem to eclipse conditions during the 20th century. We found significant correlations between our March–April spring temperature reconstruction and existing gridded spring temperature reconstructions for Europe over Turkey and southeastern Europe. … During the last 200 years, our reconstruction suggests that the coldest year was 1898 and the warmest year was 1873. The reconstructed extreme events also coincided with accounts from historical records. …  Further, the warming trends seen in our record agrees with data presented by Turkes and Sumer (2004), of which they attributed [20th century warming] to increased urbanization in Turkey.”

Flannery et al., 2017

The early part of the reconstruction (1733–1850) coincides with the end of the Little Ice Age, and exhibits 3 of the 4 coolest decadal excursions in the record. However, the mean SST estimate from that interval during the LIA is not significantly different from the late 20th Century SST mean. The most prominent cooling event in the 20th Century is a decade centered around 1965. This corresponds to a basin-wide cooling in the North Atlantic and cool phase of the AMO.”

Steiger et al., 2017

“Through several idealized and real proxy experiments we assess the spatial and temporal extent to which isotope records can reconstruct surface temperature, 500 hPa geopotential height, and precipitation. We find local reconstruction skill to be most robust across the reconstructions, particularly for temperature and geopotential height, as well as limited non-local skill in the tropics.  These results are in agreement with long-held views that isotopes in ice cores have clear value as local climate proxies, particularly for temperature and atmospheric circulation.”

Chang et al., 2017

“The chironomid-based record from Heihai Lake shows a summer temperature fluctuation within 2.4°C in the last c. 5000 years from the south-east margin of the QTP [Qinghai–Tibetan Plateau]. … The summer temperature changes in this region respond primarily to the variation in the Asian Summer Monsoon. The variability of solar activity is likely an important driver of summer temperatures, either directly or by modifying the strength and intensity of the Indian Ocean Summer Monsoon. … We observed a relatively long-lasting summer cooling episode (c. 0.8°C lower than the 5000-year average) between c. 270 cal. BP and AD c. 1956. … The record shows cooling episodes occurred at c. 3100, 2600, 2100 and 1600 cal. BP.  This is likely related to the period defined as the Northern Hemisphere Little Ice Age (LIA; c. AD 1350–1850, equivalent to 600–100 cal. BP). These possibly relate to the 500-year quasi-periodic solar cycle. Cooling stages between c. 270 and 100 cal. BP were also recorded and these are possibly linked to the LIA suggesting a hemisphere-wide forcing mechanism for this event.”


Krossa et al., 2017

Albot, 2017

Growing paleoclimatic evidence suggests that the climatic signals of Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age events can be detected around the world (Mayewski et al., 2004; Bertler et al., 2011). … [T]he causes for these events are still debated between changes in solar output, increased volcanic activity, shifts in zonal wind distribution, and changes in the meridional overturning circulation (Crowley, 2000; Hunt, 2006).”

Zhang et al., 2017

“[S]ummer temperature variability at the QTP [Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau] responds rapidly to solar irradiance changes in the late Holocene”

Kotthoff et al., 2017

Li et al., 2017

“Overall, the strong linkage between solar variability and summer SSTs is not only of regional significance, but is also consistent over the entire North Atlantic region.”

Jones et al., 2017

Vachula et al., 2017

Fischel et al., 2017

Li et al., 2017

Anderson et al., 2017

Woodson et al., 2017

The last ca. 1000 years recorded the warmest SST averaging 28.5°C. We record, for the first time in this region, a cool interval, ca. 1000 years in duration, centered on 5000 cal years BP concomitant with a wet period recorded in Borneo. The record also reflects a warm interval from ca. 1000 to 500 cal years BP that may represent the Medieval Climate Anomaly. Variations in the East Asian Monsoon (EAM) and solar activity are considered as potential drivers of SST trends. However, hydrology changes related to the El Nino-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) variability, ~ shifts of the Western Pacific Warm Pool and migration of the Intertropical Convergence Zone are more likely to have impacted our SST temporal trend. …  The SA [solar activity] trends (Steinhilber et al., 2012) are in general agreement with the regional cooling of SST (Linsley et al., 2010) and the SA [solar activity] oscillations are roughly coincident with the major excursions in our SST data.”

Koutsodendris et al., 2017

“Representing one of the strongest global climate instabilities during the Holocene, the Little Ice Age (LIA) is marked by a multicentennial-long cooling (14-19th centuries AD) that preceded the recent ‘global warming’ of the 20th century. The cooling has been predominantly attributed to reduced solar activity and was particularly pronounced during the 1645-1715 AD and 1790-1830 AD solar minima, which are known as Maunder and Dalton Minima, respectively.”

Browne et al., 2017

Perșoiu et al., 2017

Kawahata et al., 2017

“The SST [sea surface temperature] shows a broad maximum (~17.3 °C) in the mid-Holocene (5-7 cal kyr BP), which corresponds to the Jomon transgression. … The SST maximum continued for only a century and then the SST [sea surface temperatures] dropped by 3.5 °C [15.1 to 11.6 °C] within two centuries. Several peaks fluctuate by 2°C over a few centuries.”

Saini et al., 2017

Dechnik et al., 2017

Wu et al., 2017

Sun et al., 2017

“Our findings are generally consistent with other records from the ISM [Indian Summer Monsoon]  region, and suggest that the monsoon intensity is primarily controlled by solar irradiance on a centennial time scale. This external forcing may have been amplified by cooling events in the North Atlantic and by ENSO activity in the eastern tropical Pacific, which shifted the ITCZ further southwards.”

Wu et al., 2017

“The existence of depressed MAAT [mean annual temperatures] (1.3°C lower than the 3200-year average) between 1480 CE and 1860 CE (470–90 cal. yr BP) may reflect the manifestation of the ‘Little Ice Age’ (LIA) in southern Costa Rica. Evidence of low-latitude cooling and drought during the ‘LIA’ has been documented at several sites in the circum-Caribbean and from the tropical Andes, where ice cores suggest marked cooling between 1400 CE and 1900 CE.  Lake and marine records recovered from study sites in the southern hemisphere also indicate the occurrence of ‘LIA’ cooling. High atmospheric aerosol concentrations, resulting from several large volcanic eruptions and sea-ice/ocean feedbacks, have been implicated as the drivers responsible for the ‘LIA’.”

Park, 2017

Late Holocene climate change in coastal East Asia was likely driven by ENSO variation.   Our tree pollen index of warmness (TPIW) shows important late Holocene cold events associated with low sunspot periods such as Oort, Wolf, Spörer, and Maunder Minimum. Comparisons among standard Z-scores of filtered TPIW, ΔTSI, and other paleoclimate records from central and northeastern China, off the coast of northern Japan, southern Philippines, and Peru all demonstrate significant relationships [between solar activity and climate]. This suggests that solar activity drove Holocene variations in both East Asian Monsoon (EAM) and El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO).”

Markle et al., 2017

Dong et al., 2017

Nazarova et al., 2017

“The application of transfer functions resulted in reconstructed T July fluctuations of approximately 3 °C over the last 2800 years. Low temperatures (11.0-12.0 °C) were reconstructed for the periods between ca 1700 and 1500 cal yr BP (corresponding to the Kofun cold stage) and between ca 1200 and 150 cal yr BP (partly corresponding to the Little Ice Age [LIA]). Warm periods (modern T[emperatures] July or higher) were reconstructed for the periods between ca 2700 and 1800 cal yr BP, 1500 and 1300 cal yr BP and after 150 cal yr BP.”

Samartin et al., 2017

Thienemann et al., 2017

“[P]roxy-inferred annual MATs[annual mean air temperatures] show the lowest value at 11,510 yr BP (7.6°C). Subsequently, temperatures rise to 10.7°C at 9540 yr BP followed by an overall decline of about 2.5°C until present (8.3°C).”

Li et al., 2017

“Contrary to the often-documented warming trend over the past few centuries, but consistent with temperature record from the northern Tibetan Plateau, our data show a gradual decreasing trend of 0.3 °C in mean annual air temperature from 1750 to 1970 CE. This result suggests a gradual cooling trend in some high altitude regions over this interval, which could provide a new explanation for the observed decreasing Asian summer monsoon. In addition, our data indicate an abruptly increased interannual-to decadal-scale temperature variations of 0.8 – 2.2 °C after 1970 CE, in terms of both magnitude and frequency, indicating that the climate system in high altitude regions would become more unstable under current global warming.”

Krawczyk et al., 2017

Pendea et al., 2017  (Russia)

The Holocene Thermal Maximum (HTM) was a relatively warm period that is commonly associated with the orbitally forced Holocene maximum summer insolation (e.g., Berger, 1978; Bartlein et al., 2011). Its timing varies widely from region to region but is generally detected in paleorecords between 11 and 5 cal ka BP (e.g., Kaufman et al., 2004; Bartlein et al., 2011; Renssen et al., 2012).  … In Kamchatka, the timing of the HTM varies. Dirksen et al. (2013) find warmer-than-present conditions between 9000 and 5000 cal yr BP in central Kamchatka and between 7000 and 5800 cal yr BP at coastal sites.”

Stivrins et al., 2017  (Latvia)

“Conclusion: Using a multi-proxy approach, we studied the dynamics of thermokarst characteristics in western Latvia, where thermokarst occurred exceptionally late at the Holocene Thermal Maximum. …  [A] thermokarst active phase … began 8500 cal. yr BP and lasted at least until 7400 cal. yr BP. Given that thermokarst arise when the mean summer air temperature gradually increased ca. 2°C beyond the modern day temperature, we can argue that before that point, the local geomorphological conditions at the study site must have been exceptional to secure ice-block from the surficial landscape transformation and environmental processes.”

Bañuls-Cardona et al., 2017  (Spain)

“During the Middle Holocene we detect important climatic events. From 7000 to 6800 [years before present] (MIR 23 and MIR22), we register climatic characteristics that could be related to the end of the African Humid Period, namely an increase in temperatures and a progressive reduction in arboreal cover as a result of a decrease in precipitation. The temperatures exceeded current levels by 1°C, especially in MIR23, where the most highly represented taxon is a thermo-Mediterranean species, M. (T.) duodecimcostatus.”

Reid, 2017 (Global)

The small increase in global average temperature observed over the last 166 years is the random variation of a centrally biased random walk. It is a red noise fluctuation. It is not significant, it is not a trend and it is not likely to continue.”

Åkesson et al., 2017 (Norway)

“Reconstructions for southern Norway based on pollen and chironomids suggest that summer temperatures were up to 2 °C higher than present in the period between 8000 and 4000 BP, when solar insolation was higher (Nesje and Dahl, 1991; Bjune et al., 2005; Velle et al., 2005a).”

New Papers Show Solar Activity Impacts ENSO, Refuting Claims Sun Has Little Impact On Climate

Solar activity impacts Pacific weather

By Dr. Sebastian Lüning and Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt
(German text translated/edited by P Gosselin)

In a joint US-German study, seven scientists recently tried to discredit the sun’s impact on climate. On April 19, 2017, Guoyong Wen and colleagues published a modeling study in the Journal of Space Weather and Space Climate, which suggested a maximum solar-dependent share of 0.1°C on the temperature development over the past 400 years. Here the scientists relied on the old, well-known trick of using the Little Ice Age as the starting.

However, a really convincing test would be require including the the Medieval Warm Period, a time when temperatures were similar to those of today. The atmospheric CO2 concentration was low while solar activity was high. Once again a good opportunity got passed up.

Ignored here were the strong paleo-climatological indicators that the sun had significant involvement on the climate climate. At notrickszone Kenneth Richard presented an entire series of new studies. In September 2016, Andy May presented a nice overview of the thousand-year cycles over at WUWT.

Yet another interesting paper by Kovalenko & Zherebtsov, appeared in November 2014 at Springer-Journal ‘Atmospheric and Oceanic Optics‘:

Influence of solar activity on the climate change
We discuss problems which are of main importance for understanding the nature of climate changes in the 20th century and basic physical processes responsible for these changes. A possible role of solar activity in the Earth’s climate changes in the past and future is considered. As shown, physical mechanisms which can provide for the solar variability effect on the weather and climate are reduced to the control of the energy flux from the Earth to space. A special emphasis is given on the solar activity effect on climatic characteristics of the troposphere through the atmospheric electricity. We consider peculiarities of the response of thermal and dynamic regimes of the World Ocean and atmosphere to solar activity changes and processes in the atmosphere, ocean, and cryosphere. We also show and discuss results of the analysis of regularities and peculiarities of troposphere and the ocean surface temperature response to both isolated heliogeophysical disturbances and long-term changes in solar and geomagnetic activity.”

El Nino appears irregularly every 2-7 years. In between there are the cooling La Nina phases. El Nino and La Nina are Pacific weather phenomena that make up in part the so-called ENSO, which is an indicator of the Pacific climate condition. A team of scientists led by Danish Hassan presented calculations in a paper in the Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics in January, 2016. The paper showed a solar influence on the ENSO, and thus a related climate-parameter:

Sunspots and ENSO relationship using Markov method
The various techniques have been used to confer the existence of significant relations between the number of Sunspots and different terrestrial climate parameters such as rainfall, temperature, dewdrops, aerosol and ENSO etc. Improved understanding and modelling of Sunspots variations can explore the information about the related variables. This study uses a Markov chain method to find the relations between monthly Sunspots and ENSO data of two epochs (1996–2009 and 1950–2014). Corresponding transition matrices of both data sets appear similar and it is qualitatively evaluated by high values of 2-dimensional correlation found between transition matrices of ENSO and Sunspots. The associated transition diagrams show that each state communicates with the others. Presence of stronger self-communication (between same states) confirms periodic behaviour among the states. Moreover, closeness found in the expected number of visits from one state to the other show the existence of a possible relation between Sunspots and ENSO data. Moreover, perfect validation of dependency and stationary tests endorses the applicability of the Markov chain analyses on Sunspots and ENSO data. This shows that a significant relation between Sunspots and ENSO data exists. Improved understanding and modelling of Sunspots variations can help to explore the information about the related variables. This study can be useful to explore the influence of ENSO related local climatic variability.”

Germany’s Fake Heat: Media Calling A Few Hours Of 30+°C Weather ‘A Heat Wave’!

This weekend Germany is getting its first summerlike weather (after having seen snow earlier in the month), with temperatures forecast to reach 30°C or more in some parts of Germany.

And already a number of media outlets and WetterOnline, for example, have announced that a “heat wave” will roll across the country over the coming days.

But as Schneefan at climate and weather site wobleibtdieerderwaermung.de points out, you really have got to wonder what the media and some weather outlets are thinking here. This all borders on real comedy.

Wetter online.de wrote:

Perfect timing: Precisely during what will be for many a long holiday weekend, the first heat wave of the year is rolling in. Already on Saturday along the Rhine area temperatures of 30°C are in the works. On Saturday and Monday it’ll be around 30°C hot everywhere...“

“Around 30°C hot”…, on Saturday and Monday? This is a heat wave?

“Meteorological nonsense”

Schneefan thinks it’s ridiculous, and calls it “meteorological nonsense” when one looks at the definition of a heat wave, provided by Wetteronline no less:

It is considered a heat wave when the high temperature reaches 30°C or more over five or more consecutive days.”

“That certainly isn’t going to happen in Germany at the end of May 2017,” Schneefan comments. “Two days of heat don’t make a heat wave, but they do cause waves from the media.”

30°C temperatures in fact spotty, short-lived

Looking at major cities across Germany, we see in fact that temperatures will be 30°C or higher only over a few hours during the “heat wave”. Berlin will see only about 5 hours of 30°C. Frankfurt will see some three days with temps reaching 30°C or higher, for a total of roughly 15 hours.

Munich and Hamburg aren’t going to see the 30°C mark at all during the year’s first “heat wave”. Hanover will see one day (Monday) with 30°C – for about a whopping whole 3 hours!

The 7-day outlook for the 2m temperature shows in fact rather substantial cooling across much of Europe:

The 7-day forecast shows cooling across much of Europe (blue color). Source: www.karstenhaustein.com/climate.php

Natural Factors, Not CO2, Driving Switzerland’s Surprising Snow (Non)Trends

Strongly fluctuating snow cover in Switzerland appears to be coupled to ocean cycles

By Dr. Sebastian Lüning and Prof. Fritz Vahrenholt
(German text translated/edited by P Gosselin)

For those who love snow, there are supposedly dark clouds on the horizon. Snow is becoming less and less. Never in the past has snow been as seldom as it is today. In the past it was always there when we needed it. Climate change, however, is putting an end to it. It’s a sad story that everyone has been reading in the newspapers. Of course humans are to blame.

It turns out many of these stories in the press are relatively scant on facts. We’ve reported with a number of hard facts on this topic on a number of occasions, and they don’t exactly fit very well with the alarmist narrative.

Today we are taking a look at Switzerland to see how snow has been doing in the land of the Alps over the past years and what we might expect for the future. In WIREs Climate Change, Martin Beniston provided and overview in 2012 on the Swiss snow trends over the past 90 years (Figure 1).

If you look at the curves for mean snow depth for the 10 stations, we see a great amount of natural variability. Beniston sees a relationship with the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), which is an important ocean cycle.

Figure 1: Snow depth curves during the winter months for 10 representative stations at 500 – 2700 m elevation: Zurich, 556 m; St Gallen, 779 m; Chateau d’Oex, 985 m; Engelberg, 1035 m; Scuol, 1298 m; Montana, 1508 m; Davos, 1590 m; Segl-Maria, 1798 m; Arosa, 1840 m; Weissfluhjoch, 2690 m. running five year mean. Source: Beniston 2012.

Now let’s examine the duration of snow cover (Fig. 2). Once again we see enormous natural variability. We do not see a trend to shorter snow seasons, and the curve fluctuates wildly.

Fig. 2: Duration of snow cover (in days) in Switzerland using station data. Source: Beniston 2012.

The WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research describes the Swiss trends at his website as follows:

An analysis of snow depths over many years shows that the annual snowpack is subject to large variations, both from year to year, and as regards location (northern/southern flank of the Alps, western/eastern Switzerland, prealps/Alps).

These huge natural fluctuations are the hallmark of the snowpack in wintertime. For this reason, it is difficult to draw any firm conclusions concerning climate-related changes in the snowpack or avalanche activity. Most of the winters in the 1980s, for example, were accompanied by large, rather than smaller quantities of snow. In contrast, towards the end of the 20th century, many measuring stations recorded minimum snowfall. The winters of the 21st century to date have shown a slight recovery, but snow depths are generally below average.

Clear reduction in the Mitteland and prealps

The described changes are more apparent, the lower the altitude of the observation station. Especially in the Mitteland region, the last 20 years are regarded as having the least snowfall since conventional measurements began about 130 years ago – and, according to historical records, the least for 300 years or more. A more exact analysis shows that the trend towards less snowy winters for most stations below 1300 m is statistically significant.

At stations above 2000 m, there is as yet no indication of a reduction in snow depths attributable to climate change. Further investigations have made it clear, moreover, that the reduced snow depths are primarily a consequence of higher winter temperatures, rather than a reduction in precipitation. An analysis of the seasonal differences shows a slight trend towards small amounts of snow in the early winter at intermediate altitudes, and indications of amplified melting during the spring at all altitudes.”

And because of the strong variability measured in the winter, it is also valid for Christmastime. Balz Rittmeyer and Marc Fehr have closely examined snow statistics for Switzerland and come up with an amazing result, and reported it at their blog at the Tagesanzeiger:

The White Christmas myth
Also this year there wasn’t any snow in the lowlands. Whoever thinks there was snow more often during the Christmas holidays in the past, they should look at these data. Is climate change responsible for fewer white Christmases? No. A look at the statistics shows that on December 24 and 25 there was not more snow in the past. Over the measured dataset is almost 80 years long and there is no detectable trend to see. In fact the longest stretch of Christmas without snow occurred from 1941 to 1949.”

Read the whole article at the blog of the Tagesanzeiger. Also the 2016/17 winter has shown us the unpredictability of Swiss snow cover. The online SRF wrote on 28 April 2017:

Record snow at St. Gallen: Never has there been this much snow, so late
This morning the weather reporter of the City of St. reported a snow depth of 26 centimeters. Since mid April this has never happened. The data go back to 1959. The previous record was 25 centimeters in the year 2001, on April 22. Now the record value has been pushed back almost one week. The second half of spring is defined as the middle of April to the end of May. Up to now there has been a maximum of 25 centimeters, namely in January. Also interesting: For the previous record it was the same. On April 22 there was also more snow than there was in the previous winter.”

St. Gallen is 675 m elevation, and well represents a lower elevation station. So will the trend in the middle of the country mean less snow in the winter?


Robust Natural Variability Affirmed In Global Sea Level Rise Rates – No Correlation With CO2 Forcing

 Tide Gauge Evidence: Sea Levels 

Rose Faster Before 1950 Than Since

In recent years it has become increasingly apparent that tide gauge measurements of sea level rise often do not align with climate model expectations.

The models are predicated on the assumption that anthropogenic CO2 emissions, which have risen explosively since about 1950are the drivers of modern sea level rise.

Evidence from observed sea level trends have not been cooperating with this narrative, however.

Tide gauges indicate there has been a substantial overall reduction in the rate of sea level rise since about 1950 rather than the expected substantial acceleration.

For example, UK oceanographer Simon Holgate reported a 29% deceleration in global sea level rise rates from the first half of the 20th century (1904-1953) to the second half (1954-2003)

Holgate, 2007    “The rate of sea level change was found to be larger in the early part of last century (2.03 ± 0.35 mm/yr 1904–1953), in comparison with the latter part (1.45 ± 0.34 mm/yr 1954–2003).”

A small sampling of regional tide gauge results (SW Pacific, Japan) affirm the deceleration of sea level rise since the mid-20th century, and indicate the highest rates of sea level rise occurred before human CO2 emissions began accelerating rapidly.

Gehrels et al., 2012    “Between 1900 and 1950 relative sea level rose at an average rate of 4.2±0.1 mm/yr. During the latter half of the 20th century the reconstructed rate of relative sea-level rise was 0.7±0.6 mm/yr. Our study is consistent with a similar pattern of relative sea-level change recently reconstructed for southern New Zealand.”

Sasaki et al., 2017    “Sea level variability around Japan from 1906 to 2010 is examined using a regional ocean model, along with observational data and the CMIP5 historical simulations. The regional model reproduces observed interdecadal sea level variability, e.g., high sea level around 1950, low sea level in the 1970s, and sea level rise during the most recent three decades, along the Japanese coast. … That the wind-induced sea level rise along the Japanese coast around 1950 is as large as the recent sea level rise highlights the importance of natural variability in understanding regional sea level change on interdecadal timescales.”

A reconstruction of global-scale rates from tide gauges (Jevrejeva et al., 2008) dating back to 1700 also reveals a deceleration in the rate of sea level increase since 1950.

Jevrejeva et al., 2008

Rates Of Recent Rise For 2,133 Global-Scale Tide Gauges: 1.04 mm/year 

According to a comprehensive analysis (2,133 tide gauges) of Permanent Service for Mean Sea Level (PSMSL) data, the current (2014) global mean sea level rise rate is a little more than 1 mm/year.

Parker, 2015   “The nominal satellite altimeter-based determination of the absolute global mean sea level is actually a computational result rather than a direct observation. It is obtained by correcting the satellite altimeter raw signal with algorithms having many features in common with the climate models. Regardless of any modeling problems, Carter et al. (2014) pointed out that estimates of sea-level change from satellite-collected data remain problematic, because of the many uncertainties in data collection and processing. In particular, there is inconsistency between the results derived by different research groups, with all results depending upon the accuracy of complex adjustments, some of which lack in- dependent verification, plus the severe problem that the signal being sought may be less than the noise level of the data being used. Many corrections applied to all satellite altimeter measurements of sea-level since 2003 had the effect of changing a sea-level record that showed no trend or a gentle rise into one that projects high rates of rise.”
“The latest PSMSL Table of Relative Mean Sea Level Secular Trends update 14-Feb-2014 (www.psmsl.org) proposes the relative rates of rise computed for 2133 tide gauges of variable record length (maximum 183 [years], minimum 21 [years], average 56.5 years) with the more recent, shortest readings collected mostly in areas of subsidence and a strongly non uniform geographical coverage. The average relative rate of rise of the 2133 tide gauges is 1.04±0.45 mm/year

NOAA’s ‘Believed’ Rates Of Recent Rise From Tide Gauges: 1.7-1.8 mm/year 


Adding NOAA’s ‘Believed’ Modern Rate To The Long-Term Rate Trend

Trends In Human CO2 Emissions Rates (GtC/year)

Non-Correlation: Sea Level Rise Rates & CO2 Emissions Rates

Reconstructed Trends In Total Solar Irradiance 1700-2013

Yndestad and Solheim, 2017

“Deterministic models based on the stationary periods confirm the results through a close relation to known long solar minima since 1000 A.D. and suggest a modern maximum period from 1940 to 2015. The model computes a new Dalton-type sunspot minimum from approximately 2025 to 2050 and a new Dalton-type period TSI minimum from approximately 2040 to 2065. … Periods with few sunspots are associated with low solar activity and cold climate periods. Periods with many sunspots are associated with high solar activity and warm climate periods.”

Apparent Correlation: TSI And (Lagged) Sea Level Rise Rate Changes

Apparent Correlation: TSI And Northern Hemisphere Temperatures

Stoffel et al., 2015

Small Business Association Leader: Germany’s Climate/Energy Policy Has “Failed Spectacularly”

Dr. Karl Tack is a managing director of a family-owned business that manufactures grinding tools. The company has been in operation over 7 generations and is just one of many that operate all across Germany.

According to Blick aktuell here, family-owned businesses make up 90% of the country’s number of privately owned companies. These German family-run businesses are often innovative, are export powerhouses over a broad range of niche sectors, and not surprisingly they are a major part of the German economic back bone. They are a critical pillar of Germany’s 3-trillion-euro economy.

Tack is also a board member of the industry association Die Familienunternehmer — family business owners — which represents 6000 family operated businesses in Germany with combined annual sales of 460 billion euros, reports the online Blick aktuell here. He is also the Chairman of the association’s energy policy commission.

The Association of Family Business Owners stands by the values of freedom, property, competition  and responsibility.

The success of family-run companies is not only dependent on world-class innovation, but also on a business-friendly environment. Lately, however, Germany’s energy supply has gone from being an asset to one that is now a burden for many. And as a member of the board of family-owned companies, Tack wishes “to shift his focus on energy policy“, Blick writes.

Climate and energy policy failed spectacularly

Blick quotes Tack:

The Energiewende [transition to green energies] ushered in by the German government has resulted in electricity becoming massively more expensive. The long-term consequence: Jobs are being lost, investments being moved to foreign countries and the industrial base is slowly being destroyed. Policymaking has also failed with its climate-political goals. The high-wire act of climate protection targets and efficient support programs has failed spectacularly“.

These are strong words coming from a leader of small companies, and thus a critical part of German industry, and so they need to be heeded by policymakers soon. Germany can ill-afford to see this economic locomotive weaken, let alone die off.


Reports Of Arctic Ice Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated…Greenland Ice Mass Near Record

Polar snow and ice cover rarely cooperates, no matter what side of the warming issue you may be on. It changes so fast.

When ice cover climbs, skeptics like to claim that it shows global warming isn’t what it is often hyped up to be. And when ice cover drops to satellite era record lows, the alarmists start screaming and hollering, forgetting that low ice levels were not uncommon in the past 100 years. They freaked out just some months ago when the yearly autumn Arctic sea ice recovery faltered and fell to “record” lows. Immediately they began predicting near ice-free conditions for the coming summer.

Just as the weather does, polar ice and snow cover also acts unpredictably, and now just a few months later Northern Hemisphere snow and ice cover is back within the normal range.

Winter snow and ice cover trend for the Northern Hemisphere has in fact been trending upwards since statistics started.

Source: Rutgers University

And when one applies the 30-year weather mean used to define climate, the winter trend since 1987 is strongly upwards. So is the autumn trend. This 2017 winter was well above average, ranking in the top 10.

The Greenland snow and ice surface mass balance is currently also near record levels:

Source: DMI.

As meteorologist Joe Bastardi, said, it’s going to take a fair amount of warmth to make the added ice go away again. The following chart shows the changes since Sept. 1, 2016.

Source: DMI. “Map of the accumulated surface mass balance (in mm water equivalent) from September 1st to now.”

The vast majority area of Greenland has seen surface snow and ice gain over the past 9 months. Moreover, Arctic temperatures for now are below normal:

Source: DMI.

The big development in recent Arctic news is the “recovery” of Arctic sea ice extent, which now is back in the normal range. Quoting in part Mark Twain, reports of its death “have been greatly exaggerated”. Just months ago, alarmists were claiming an irreversible death spiral.

Source: DMI

Depending on Arctic weather conditions later this year, anything is possible as to what the Arctic does over the coming months. One thing is sure: Its death has long been exaggerated.


New Paper: Geothermal Heat A Leading Driver Of Surface Temperatures

Heat Flux From Below Melts Ice Sheets, 

Drives Temperatures & CO2 Variations 

Image: Smellie, 2012                                                             Image: Newton, 2008

It has long been established in the peer-reviewed scientific literature that naturally-driven fluctuations in the Earth’s surface temperature preceded the rise and fall of carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations for at least the last 800,000 years.

As oceans warm, they release more of their vast stores of CO2; as oceans cool, they retain more CO2.   During cold glacial periods, when ice sheets covered much of the Earth, atmospheric CO2 concentrations only hovered around 180 parts per million (ppm).  After surface temperatures naturally warmed up by multiple degrees C during interglacials, it took at least several hundred years before atmospheric CO2 concentrations began rising in response to the temperature rise.

This lag supports the conclusion that glacial-to-interglacial variations in CO2 concentrations may be driven by temperature changes, as the temperature change occurred well before the CO2 change did.

IPCC AR4 (2007): “Atmospheric CO2 follows temperature changes in Antarctica with a lag of some hundreds of years.”
Caillon et al., 2003     “The sequence of events during Termination III suggests that the CO2 increase lagged Antarctic deglacial warming by 800 ± 200 years and preceded the Northern Hemisphere deglaciation.”
Fischer et al., 1999    “High-resolution records from Antarctic ice cores show that carbon dioxide concentrations increased by 80 to 100 parts per million by volume 600 ± 400 years after the warming of the last three deglaciations.”
Monnin et al., 2001     “The start of the CO2 increase thus lagged the start of the [temperature] increase by 800 ± 600 years.”
Kawamura et al., 2007    “Our chronology also indirectly gives the timing of the CO2 rise at [glacial] terminations, which occurs within 1 kyr of the increase in Antarctic temperature.”
Indermuhle  et al., 2000    “The [CO2] lag was calculated for which the correlation coefficient of the CO2 record and the corresponding temperatures values reached a maximum. The simulation yields a [CO2] lag of (1200 ± 700) yr.
Landais et al., 2013     “[F]rom 130.5 to 129,000 years ago, the rise in atmospheric CO2 concentrations lagged that of Antarctic temperature unequivocally….At mid-slope, there is an unequivocal lead of δ15N [temperature] over CO2 of 900 ± 325 yr”.
Schneider et al., 2013    “Furthermore, a  5,000 yr lag  in the CO2 decline relative to EDC [East Antarctica] temperatures is confirmed during the glacial inception at the end of MIS5.5 (120,000 yrs before present).”
Stott et al., 2007     “Deep-sea temperatures warmed by ∼2°C between 19 and 17 thousand years before the present (ky B.P.), leading the rise in atmospheric CO2 and tropical–surface-ocean warming by ∼1000 years.”

The occurrence of temperature change leading the CO2 concentration growth rate change may also occur in the modern era.

Flohn, 1982    “Comparative investigations (Keeling and Bacastow 1977, Newll et al. 1978, Angell 1981) found a positive correlation between the rate of increase of atmospheric CO2 and the fluctuations of sea surface temperature (SST) in the equatorial Pacific, which are caused by rather abrupt changes between upwelling cool water and downwelling warm water (“El Niño“) in the eastern equatorial Pacific. … A crude estimate of these differences is demonstrated by the fact that during the period 1958-1974, the average CO2-increase within five selective years with prevailing cool water only 0.57 ppm/a [per year], while during five years with prevailing warm water it was 1.11 ppm/a.  Thus in a a warm water year, more than one Gt (1015 g) carbon is additionally injected into the atmosphere, in comparison to a cold water year.”
Jones and Cox, 2005    “There is clear similarity between Figures 1b and 1c, with the positive CO2 growth rate anomalies corresponding to El Niño [warming] events, and the negative growth rate anomalies corresponding to La Niña [cooling] events. … It is unlikely that these anomalies can be explained by an abrupt increase in anthropogenic emissions, as the anomalies are much larger than annual increases in fossil fuel emissions.  Most interannual variability in the CO2 growth rate is attributable to variations in land-atmosphere CO2 exchange with climate (e.g., associated with ENSO or volcanic perturbations)”

Geothermal Heat Flux Leads Temperature, CO2 Rise By 1000s Of Years

It has recently been suggested that there is a “detection of Milankovitch [millennial-scale climate changes linked to the Earth’s orbit] frequencies in global volcanic activity” (Kutterolf et al., 2012), or that variations in geothermal or volcanic activity are not random, but function within short- and long-term cycles and periodicities that could be linked to the Sun-Earth connection itself.

Tolstoy, 2015   “Pulsing of seafloor volcanic activity may feed back into climate cycles, possibly contributing to glacial/interglacial cycles, the abrupt end of ice ages, and dominance of the 100 kyr cycle.”

With this in mind, it should not be particularly surprising that Russian geophysicists Demezhko and Gomostaeva (2015) recently found the geothermal heat flux from below the Earth’s surface may have risen 2 to 3 thousand years before the surface temperatures and CO2 concentrations began rising.

Demezhko and Gornostaeva, 2015    “Despite the substantial dispersion of CO2 estimations, a character and a chronology of CO2 concentration changes are much closer to temperature changes rather than to heat flux variations. It may mean no significant contribution of CO2 forcing to climatically caused heat flux and thus to the temperature increase during Pleistocene–Holocene warming.”
[T]he increase of carbon dioxide may be a consequence of temperature increasing. Comparing the chronology of surface flux, temperature and carbon dioxide concentration changes, we can draw some conclusions about the causes of climate change. … The increase of carbon dioxide concentrations occurred 2–3 thousands of years later than the heat flux increase and synchronously with temperature response.”

Therefore, the order for net heat energy changes in the Earth system may be this: First, there is (a) a change (increase) in the heat flux from beneath the Earth’s surface (with an ostensible connection to solar-orbital changes), (b) the Earth’s surface temperature rises, and (c) CO2 concentrations rise.

New Paper: Geothermal Data Affirms Heat Flux Leads Surface Temperature

A new paper from Demezhko, Gornostaeva, and two other colleagues again provides further evidence that heat flux leads surface temperature change by about 1000 to 2000 years, and that this sequencing therefore “does not depend on climate change”.

Temperature and heat flux changes at the base of 

Laurentide ice sheet inferred from geothermal data

Demezhko et al., 2017

“Recently, geothermal data have been used to estimate transient climatically caused surface heat flux (SHF) changes (Beltrami et  al. 2000, 2002; Beltrami 2001; Demezhko et  al. 2013; Volobuev 2013; Demezhko and Gornostaeva 2015). This heat flux has been introduced as a useful new paleoclimate characteristic. It should be distinguished from the steady-state background heat flow. The latter is attributed to the Earth’s internal heat sources and does not depend on climate change. Both these fluxes are independent components of the ground surface heat balance. … GST [ground surface temperature] and SHF [surface heat flux] histories differ substantially in shape and chronology.  [Subsurface] Heat flux changes ahead of temperature changes by 500–1000 years.”
“Geothermal reconstructions spanning tens of thousands of years are of special importance for understanding the climate history of the Earth. During this period (15–10-ka BP) the last glacial period of pleistocene (Wisconsinan in central North America, Weichselian or Vistulian in Northern Europe, Valdai in Eastern Europe, Zyryanka and Sartan in Siberia) ended and the current Holocene interglacial began.”
“More recently, Demezhko et  al. (2013) and Demezhko and Gornostaeva (2015) reconstructed long-term surface heat flux histories near Lake Onega in Karelia and in the Middle Urals, respectively. It was noted that the long-term heat flux changes differ considerably from the temperature changes. The temperature curve reveals a sharp rise in the early Holocene (12−10-ka BP) and a relatively stable warm climate of interglacial, while the heat flux began to increase about 2 ka [2000 years] earlier [13000 years ago vs. 11000 years ago for surface temperature], reached a maximum at the beginning of the Holocene, and then decreased.”

Figure 4d from the paper shows the trajectory of the reconstructed temperature changes from the site (Alberta, Canada) as determined by geothermal data.  Notice that modern temperatures are ~8°C cooler than they were about 4,500 years ago.

“These results (Fig.  4d) indicate an abrupt increase of summer (from May to August) temperatures between 12 and 10 ka BP, relative stabilization 10–7 ka BP, another increase after 7 ka BP, and rapid decline to modern values after 3  ka BP.”

Greenland Warms, Melts Significantly Due To Heat Flux From Below

Considering the magnitude of heat energy required to melt polar ice sheets from below, and that central Antarctica’s air temperatures average about -55°C year-round, it should not be surprising that a significant portion of the meltwater flow from both polar ice sheets (Greenland and Antarctica) is derived from “heat flow from the deep Earth”.

Rogozhina et al., 2016    “Ice-penetrating radar and ice core drilling have shown that large parts of the north-central Greenland ice sheet are melting from below. It has been argued that basal ice melt is due to the anomalously high geothermal flux that has also influenced the development of the longest ice stream in Greenland. Here we estimate the geothermal flux beneath the Greenland ice sheet and identify a 1,200-km-long and 400-km-wide geothermal anomaly beneath the thick ice cover. We suggest that this anomaly explains the observed melting of the ice sheet’s base, which drives the vigorous subglacial hydrology and controls the position of the head of the enigmatic 750-km-long northeastern Greenland ice stream.”
Petrunin et al., 2013    “Here we use a coupled ice–lithosphere model driven by climate and show that the oldest and thickest part of the Greenland Ice Sheet is strongly influenced by heat flow from the deep Earth. … Complex interactions between geothermal heat flow and glaciation-induced thermal perturbations in the upper crust over glacial cycles lead to strong regional variations in basal ice conditions, with areas of rapid basal melting adjoining areas of extremely cold basal ice.”
Fahnestock et al., 2001    High Geothermal Heat Flow, Basal Melt, and the Origin of Rapid Ice Flow in Central Greenland … “Age-depth relations from internal layering reveal a large region of rapid basal melting in Greenland. Melt is localized at the onset of rapid ice flow in the large ice stream that drains north off the summit dome and other areas in the northeast quadrant of the ice sheet. Locally, high melt rates indicate geothermal fluxes 15 to 30 times continental background. The southern limit of melt coincides with magnetic anomalies and topography that suggest a volcanic origin.”
van der Veen et al., 2007     “[T]here is a growing body of evidence suggesting more extensive basal melting in the central region of northern Greenland. … The basal melt rate at NGRIP reaches 7.5 mm ice per year, and the modeled geothermal heat flux is between 90 and 160 mW/m2 along the flow line originating 50 km upstream of the drill site (Dahl-Jensen et al., 2003).  Again, the origin of the large geothermal heat flux remains unidentified. Ice-penetrating radar profiles show bright bed reflections in many locations in northern Greenland, indicating the presence of lubricating meltwater at the glacier base.”
Lilja Buchardt and Dahl-Jensen, 2007     “From radio-echo sounding (RES) surveys and ice core data it can be seen that the ice sheet is melting at the base in a large area in Northern Greenland. The RES images reveal internal layers in the ice. The layers are former deposition surfaces and are thus isochrones. Undulations of the isochrones in regions where the base is smooth suggest that the basal melt rate changes over short distances. This indicates that the geothermal heat flux is very high and has large spatial variability in Northern Greenland. Combining the estimated basal melt rates with the observed borehole temperatures allows us to convert the basal melt rates to geothermal heat flow values. From the two-dimensional model we find the basal melt rate and geothermal heat flux at NorthGRIP to be 6.1 mm a−1 and 129 mW m−2, respectively.”
Dahl-Jensen et al., 2003    “From temperature measurements down through the 3001 m deep borehole at the North Greenland Icecore Project (NorthGRIP) drill site, it is now clear that the ice at the base, 3080 m below the surface, is at the pressure-melting point. This is supported by the measurements on the ice core where the annual-layer thicknesses show there is bottom melting at the site and upstream from the borehole. … The results show the geothermal heat flow varies from 50 to 200 mW m-2 along the 100 km section of the modeled flowline. The melt rate at the NorthGRIP site is 0.75 cm a-1, but the deep ice in the NorthGRIP core originated 50 km upstream and has experienced melt rates as high as 1.1 cm a-1.”

Antarctic Warms, Melts Significantly Due To Heat Flux From Below

Fisher et al., 2015    “We report the first direct measurement of geothermal heat flux into the base of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS), below Subglacial Lake Whillans, determined from the thermal gradient and the thermal conductivity of sediment under the lake. The heat flux at this site is 285 ± 80 mW/m2, significantly higher than the continental and regional averages estimated for this site using regional geophysical and glaciological models. Independent temperature measurements in the ice indicate an upward heat flux through the WAIS of 105 ± 13 mW/m2. The difference between these heat flux values could contribute to basal melting and/or be advected from Subglacial Lake Whillans by flowing water. The high geothermal heat flux may help to explain why ice streams and subglacial lakes are so abundant and dynamic in this region.
Maule et al., 2005    “The geothermal heat flux is an important factor in the dynamics of ice sheets; it affects the occurrence of subglacial lakes, the onset of ice streams, and mass losses from the ice sheet base. Because direct heat flux measurements in ice-covered regions are difficult to obtain, we developed a method that uses satellite magnetic data to estimate the heat flux underneath the Antarctic ice sheet. We found that the heat flux underneath the [Antarctic] ice sheet varies from 40 to 185 megawatts per square meter and that areas of high heat flux coincide with known current volcanism and some areas known to have ice streams.”
Schroeder et al., 2014    “Heterogeneous geothermal flux and subglacial volcanism have the potential to modulate ice sheet behavior and stability by providing a large, variable supply of meltwater to the subglacial water system, lubricating and accelerating the overlying ice.  …  Thwaites Glacier is one of the largest, most rapidly changing glaciers on Earth, and its landward sloping bed reaches into the deep interior of the WAIS [West Antarctic Ice Sheet], making it a leading component in scenarios for rapid deglaciation. … [H]eterogeneous geothermal flux beneath Thwaites Glacier is likely a significant factor in local, regional, and continental-scale ice sheet stability.”
Corr and Vaughan, 2008    A recent volcanic eruption beneath the West Antarctic ice sheet “Indirect evidence suggests that volcanic activity occurring beneath the West Antarctic ice sheet influences ice flow and sheet stability. …  Ongoing volcanic heat production may have implications for contemporary ice dynamics in this glacial system.”
Vogel and Tulaczyk, 2006    Subglacial volcanism in West Antarctica may play a crucial role in the dynamics and stability of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS). Evidence supporting the existence of an individual subglacial volcanic center (Mt. Casertz) in the upper catchments of Whillans and Kamb Ice Stream (WIS and KIS), comes from a comparison of ice sheet modeling results with measured ice velocities. Lubrication [melting ice] of an area, which otherwise should be frozen to its bed, is best explained by basal melt water generated in the vicinity of Mt. Casertz.”
Blankenship et al., 1993    “Here we present aerogeophysical evidence for active volcanism and associated elevated heat flow beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet near the critical region where ice streaming begins. If this heat flow is indeed controlling ice-stream formation, then penetration of ocean waters inland of the thin hot crust of the active portion of the West Antarctic rift system could lead to the disappearance of ice streams, and possibly trigger a collapse of the inland ice reservoir.”
Damiani et al., 2014    “One major contributor to fast glacial flow is the presence of subglacial water, the production of which is a result of both glaciological shear heating and geothermal heat flux. A zone of thinner crust is also identified near the area’s subaerial volcanoes lending support to a recent interpretation predicting that this part of Marie Byrd Land is a major volcanic dome, likely within the West Antarctic Rift System itself.  [W]e prefer the hypothesis that Marie Byrd Land volcanoes are thermally-supported by warmer upper mantle. The presence of such inferred warm upper mantle also suggests regionally elevated geothermal heat flux in this sector of the West Antarctic Rift System and consequently the potential for enhanced meltwater production beneath parts of Thwaites Glacier itself.”

Significance Of Geothermal Influence On Climate System ‘Unknown’

There is still much to learn about geothermal factors and their relation to the Earth’s climate system.  More than 70% the Earth’s volcanism occurs under the sea floor, unobserved, and there are more than 100,000 extinct and active locations beneath the ocean depths.

Considering how influential fluctuations heat flow from beneath the Earth may be in leading/determining surface temperatures, subglacial volcanism and ice sheet melt, carbon cycling, and climate change in general, it would probably be wise to continuing studying geothermal heat flux effects on the Earth system rather than declaring climate science already “settled“.

Kelley, 2017     Volcanology: Vulcan rule beneath the sea … “Over 70% of the volcanism on Earth occurs beneath an ocean veil. … Satellite data reveal more than 100,000 extinct and active seamounts that mark sites of past and present volcanic activity.  [O]bservations imply that submarine volcanoes may play an important role in cycling carbon and sulfur through the Earth, oceans and atmosphere.”
[T]he flux of volatiles from these systems remains poorly quantified and the significance of these volcanoes as part of the deep carbon and sulfur cycles on a global scale is unknown.”

‘Tagesspiegel’ Calls German Solar Energy Scheme An “Exemplary Initiative” On What “Not To Do”!

Germany’s rush into green energies is slowly and grudgingly being acknowledged by once steadfast proponents as a failure. Over time, even the most bitter of realities have to be accepted.

Germany’s online Tagesspiegel here recently presented a commentary on the collapse of the country’s largest solar components manufacturer, Solarworld, and what it really means.

First let’s note that the Tagesspiegel is based in Berlin, and is a center-left publication, and so what we have here is a grudging admission from a proponent that the pet green energy project is not what many would like us to believe it is.

Recently the top brass of Solarworld announced it would declare insolvency, and has since become “a case where we can learn a lot,” so says Tagesspiegel’s .

She writes: “It tells us the story of megalomania, ignorance, cockiness and blindness of the future” and that it is an example of “the state interfering with competition  – and distorting it” to the point where “companies are hampered and the power of innovation is weakened

Weidenfeld compares the German government’s forays into green energy to the refugee crisis, where good intentions ended up with disastrous results. On companies feeding at the subsidy trough, she writes:

Ultimately, they wind up resorting to tricks, then they disappear.”

Weidenfeld describes a Germany that was hell-bent on showing the world how things are supposed to get done, but in the end wound up as an embarrassing failure. Weidenfeld concludes on the massive solar subsidies:

The more that politics tries to shape entire [industry] branches, the faster they come to an end. It’s for sure: the German initiatives are exemplary for the world. Here we can learn what you don’t do.”

Trump may not be able to stop the mass green energy subsidy scheme Paris is demanding, but the natural laws of economics certainly will. The longer the scheme is propped up, the bigger the crash will be.


Alan Dershowitz Sees Civil Liberties Under Attack With Media-Political Mobbing Of Trump

Off-topic today. (Don’t worry, the climate isn’t going anywhere.)

Like many of us, I’m quite surprised by the absurd calls for impeachment of a President who has done nothing wrong. Just because he does things people don’t agree with and is sand in the Establishment machinery, this in no way constitutes grounds for impeachment. It’s a grand charade.

Will backfire on media-political mob

Don’t get discouraged by all the spectacular theatrics, as this can turn out to be a blessing in disguise. Newton’s Laws also often apply in politics: for every action, there is an opposite and equal reaction. There’s a good chance this is all going to backfire, and possibly even on a nuclear scale. People don’t appreciate bureaucrats who abuse the justice system to go unfairly go after someone.

Alan Dershowitz: “like Stalinist Russia”

As the blatant non-objectivity and hatred becomes ever glaring, people are taking notice and seeing this for what it really is: a political lynching. One example is Harvard law Professor Alan Dershowitz, a left-wing Democrat and supporter of Hillary Clinton no less.

“What’s the crime?”

In an interview at FOX News, Dershowitz, one of the country’s top civil liberties lawyers, totally blasted the media-political mugging of President Trump, comparing it to “Stalinist Russia”, and demands to know: “What’s the crime?”

Political charade

The Harvard professor noted: “Nobody can point me to a statute that could be violated.” Moreover Dershowitz sees Trump possibly getting benefit from it all, and expresses full confidence in Mueller.

In fact, Dershowitz says the worst case scenario is Flynn getting indicted, refering to him as a low-level former aid. Dershowitz thinks in the end it’ll end up helping Trump. This is why Trump supporters, barring any surprises, can rest easy and relish at the prospect of the coming public backlash.

And even if Trump had coordinated with the Russians in the Wikileaks dump, that too would not be a crime, says Dershowitz. In fact the real issue is Clinton wrongdoings exposed by the Wikileaks.

German ARD public television: the world’s most Trump-hating

Interestingly in Germany, almost everyone believes Trump commited crimes, even though they don’t know what they are talking about. This is so because most Germans get their news filtered by the publicly funded media outlets, like ARD television. A recent report on mass negative reporting of Trump found that Germany’s flagship ARD public television took the top spot worldwide in negativity, with 98% of its reports being negative, RT here writes. (PS: RT is just the messenger here).

Most Germans I meet say they simply cannot understand how Americans could have elected Trump. And as long as they continue relying on outlets like ARD for information, they surely never will.


Germany’s Energiewende “An Economic, Social and Ecological Disaster”, Writes Top German Socialist!

In a referendum slated for this coming Sunday, Swiss citizens are being called to vote on a national energy strategy, dubbed Energiestrategie 2050.

Germany Green Party co-founder and former federal Homeland Minister Otto Georg Schily warns Swiss citizens voting on energy referendum that the Energiewende is “an economic, social and ecological disaster”. Photo by Olaf Kosinsky (2015), CC BY-SA 3.0 de.

Now it is reported that just days ago German Green Party co-founder (later turned socialist) and former German Homeland Minister Otto Schily has come out to warn Swiss citizens against voting yes on the project, reminding them that Germany’s Energiewende (transition to green energies) is not the success it is often claimed to be, and that it has in fact turned into a 25 billion euro a year disaster.

This is reported the online Swiss daily, Basler Zeitung here.

Schily held the top position in Germany’s Homeland Ministry in the country’s Socialist/Green coalition government led by Gerhard Schröder from 1998 to 2005. He is regarded as one of the country’s most respected elderly politicians and statesmen.

According to the Basler Zeitung, Schily wrote a letter to Christoph Blocher, where he judged the Energiewende to be an “economic, ecological and social disaster” and so urged Swiss citizens to vote no.

The rightwing Swiss SVP party, led by Blocher, is leading the campaign against the green energy transformation project put forth by Swiss President Doris Leuthard of the centrist Christian CVP party. Both Schily and Blocher were Homeland ministers at the same time in their respective countries in the 2000s and are reported to maintain light contact.

The online Swiss site BLICK characterized Schily’s letter as “explosive”.

The Basler Zeitung reports: “The costs of the Energiewende have grown to over 25 billion euros annually. As a result consumer electricity bills have risen year after year.”

Socially unjust

Schily wrote that Germany’s green energies are also “extremely socially unjust” because they force low income consumers to pay more money into the pockets of wealthy wind and solar park operators – in a classic redistribution from the bottom up.

Jobs-killer, done nothing for the climate

Moreover, the Basler Zeitung writes that the Energiewende has scarred Germany’s natural landscape, has probably cost more jobs than it created, and has “contributed nothing to climate policy as it hoped to do“. Schily advised Swiss citizens “not to repeat the far reaching energy policy of the German Energiewende“.

German CO2 emissions rising instead of falling

The Basler Zeitung also cites an “expert team” by McKinsey consulting group, which not long ago found that the German energy policy has fallen far short of its aims: “Emissions of climate-harmful carbon dioxide are not going down, but rather are increasing, as is power consumption even though it was supposed to go down because of efficiency measures.”

The Basler Zeitung adds: “a collapse of the power supply threatens when the remaining German nuclear power plants are taken offline over the coming years“.


Another New Paper Traces Variations In Temperatures, Precipitation To Variations In Solar Activity

Scientists Ascribe Climate Changes

To Solar Forcing – No CO2 Attribution

In recent months, there have been dozens of papers published in the scientific literature ascribing variations in temperature and precipitation (climate) to corresponding variations in solar forcing.

Another new paper, Zhang et al., 2017, has just been published online.  The nine scientists contributing to the research place special emphasis on the relationship between solar activity and climate for the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau region of Central Asia for the last 10,000-12,000 years.

The authors link high and low solar activity to correspondingly high and low temperatures and precipitation.  Undulating millennial- and centennial-scale temperatures are found to vary by about 2.5°C throughout the Holocene.   No mention is made of carbon dioxide as an influential factor affecting climate change.

Although the instrumental record for the region documents an abrupt warming in recent decades (which aligns with the Modern Grand Maximum), the proxy evidence from subfossil chironomids used to reconstruct temperature does not show a significant or unusual regional warming trend during the last century.

Holocene high-res. quantitative summer temp. reconstruction …

southeast margin of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau [Central Asia]

Zhang et al., 2017

1.    The record suggests the summer temperature varies by ~2.5 °C across the entire period. A generally warmer period occurred between c.8500 and c.6000 cal yr BP and a cooling trend was initiated from c.5500 cal yr BP. The overall pattern broadly matches the summer insolation at 30N and the Asian Summer Monsoon records from the surrounding regions suggesting that summer temperatures from the southeast margin of the QTP [Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau] respond to insolation forcing and monsoon driven variability on a multi-millennial time scale. Modifications of this overall trend are observed on the finer temporal resolution and we suggest that solar activity could be an important mechanism driving the centennial-scale variability. It may have a strengthened effect in the late Holocene when the monsoon influence weakened.

2.    We highlight that solar activity likely plays an enhanced role in changes of summer temperatures because of the high elevation of the QTP when the monsoon is weaker. The results also indicate that summer temperature variability at the QTP responds rapidly to solar irradiance changes in the late Holocene.

3.  The temperature drop may be also due to a decline in the solar activity related to the Hallstatt cycle, with solar minima centered at approximately 8200, 5500, 2500 and 500 cal yr BP (Steinhilber et al., 2012).

4.   All three records broadly follow the decreasing trend of summer insolation at 30 N (Berger and Loutre, 1991) and this pattern is widely recorded across southern and eastern Asia including from Dongge and Qunf Caves (Dykoski et al., 2005; Fleitmann et al., 2007). The trend is marked by a broad shift to lower average summer temperature values from ~5500 cal yr BP in the lake records, suggesting that long-term summer temperature and precipitation changes in southwestern China respond to changes in insolation forcing (Gray et al., 2010).

5.   The delayed response of regional climate to orbital forcing in the early Holocene may be linked to the temperature variability predominantly being driven by centennial scale solar irradiance fluctuations during this period (Fleitmann et al., 2003; Wang et al., 2005). In addition, the existence of remnant ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere high latitudes in the early Holocene could have also caused the delay of the attainment of a temperature optimum in southwestern China in response to the solar insolation maximum (Xiao et al., 2009; Wen et al., 2010).

6.   The chironomid record from Tiancai Lake shows a 2.2° C summer warming just after ~2500 cal yr BP and the alkenone-based record from Qinghai Lake also shows a warming at this time interval. The warm period persisted for nearly 1000 years until ~1600 cal yr BP. This temporal coherence suggests a regional climate response and indicates that secondary forcing mechanisms can modify the insolation driven system. This warm period is possibly related to the rapid and overall rise of solar activity (Steinhilber et al., 2012).

7.   [T]hese observations may reflect the variability of the Indian Summer Monsoon as a result of the enhanced solar activity influence. It is in line with evidence suggested in a few studies (Lihua et al., 2007; Thamban et al., 2007; Hiremath et al., 2015) from the Indian Summer Monsoon (e.g. Bay of Bengal) influenced area. In summary, the solar irradiance fluctuation is inferred to affect the summer air temperatures at the QTP either by directly raising lake water temperatures at the high altitude under a weakened summer monsoon condition or alternatively, it could also result in variations of the Indian Summer Monsoon activity at decadal to centennial scale in the late Holocene.

8.   In general, the pattern of millennial summer temperature changes is driven by the summer insolation-forced intensity of Asian summer monsoons during the Holocene. Variations from this general pattern were evident during the late Holocene and may be related to a shift in solar activity (e.g. from ~2500 to 1600 cal yr BP).

Resurging German Free Democrats Coming Out Against Out-Of-Control Wind Energy

Over the past few years Germans have been increasing their protests against the construction of wind trubines in the countryside and the idustrial littering of the landscape.

Hundreds of citizens’ protest groups have since formed with the aim of fiercely opposing the construction of wind parks in forests, open landscapes and near residential areas.

The level of resistance has reached the point where politicians are taking real notice, and now view it as a political issue worth adopting.

Photo right: René Rock, credit: FDP

The latest sign of this happening comes from the FDP Free Democrats, who have been resurging in Germany as of late. Last Sunday the party saw a record number of voters turn out in the state elections of North Rhine Westphalia. The Greens, on the other hand, saw almost half of their voters disappear.

Further south in the German state of Hesse, home of Frankfurt, parliamentarian René Rock, FDP fraction energy policy spokesman, has called for the return of “an energy policy of reason” and come out “with great passion against a purely ideologically motivated building of further wind parks in the Hesse“.

Rock’s website here states:

Wind energy is neither economically nor climate-politically sensible, it endangers the health of people and wildlife, and it destroys the beautiful and valuable natural and cultural heritage.”

Over the past years many Germans have been horrified seeing protected forests getting chopped down and cleared to make way for 200-meter tall turbines. Not only is it an eyesore, a danger to wildlife and uneconomical, Rock also adds that Germany’s EEG feed-in act is “the most unsocial law that Germany has ever had and that it must be stopped immediately. It is nothing more than pure redistribution from the bottom up and has put the market economy out of order.”

Rock also calls for a new energy policy that “really protects people, wildlife and the environment, that is the best market solution and one that foremost researches nuclear fusion.”

He also calls for the 10H setback rule, which requires wind turbines to be placed no closer to any resident than 10 times its height and that people’s concerns need to be taken more seriously.

Bad Nauheim mayor candidate Britta Weber, also of the Free Democrats, came out against the construction of a wind park nearby, stating that the “FDP here won’t go along with it. Every wind turbine is one too many. We need new technologies, other research areas, a return back to supply and demand, protection of our homeland, without ideology and state nannyism.”


Climate Movement Falters As German Greens/Socialists Take Historic Election Trouncing

Last Sunday voters in Germany’s most populous state, North Rhine Wesphalia (NRW), sent a loud message: voters are much more concerned about problems other than climate protection and green energies.

The state’s ruling SPD Socialists/Green Party coalition government led by Hannelore Kraft took an historic beating, getting tossed out as the state swung far – from the left to the right.

The online International Economic Forum for Renewable Energies here consequently wrote:

Energy policy in Germany’s most populated state could change profoundly.”

Rise of the right

The center-right CDU party led by Armin Laschet took the top spot as it pulled in 33% of the vote, some 6.7% more than they did in the 2012 election. Most observers believe the CDU will partner up with business-friendly FDP free democrats, who picked up an impressive 12.6% of the vote, 4% more than the previous election.

The newcomer hard-right AfD party pulled in 7.4% in their first election in NRW ever.

Demise of the left: In total the center/right-of-center parties gained a whopping 18%, marking a major political shift.

Meanwhile the once ruling SPD Socialists saw their result disintegrate, falling almost 8% lower than 5 years ago, going from 39.1% to just 31.2%. The SPD coalition partners, The Greens, collapsed from 11.3% to a mere 6.4%. Meanwhile the extreme leftists, Die Linke, fell below the 5% threshold, and thus were booted out of the state parliament.

If anything, the results of the election show foremost that NRW citizens are far more concerned about other issues, such as crime, deteriorating educational quality and uncontrolled immigration, than they are about green issues. In recent polls climate and environment scored at the bottom of concerns.

Shift back to fossil fuels?

The results also hint at a growing sentiment that may be taking hold across Germany: Germans are realizing that no matter how much pain they might endure in trying to rescue the climate, ultimately their contribution on a global scale really will have very little impact at all. Whatever reductions Germany may achieve over the next 10-20 years will be wiped out in just a matter of months by large developing countries elsewhere, like China, India, and the African continent. What’s the point of all the pain?

According to the online International Economic Forum for Renewable Energies here:

With the altered balance of power in the most populated federal state comes an end to the previous energy policy of the ousted Red-Green state government. Conventional power sources will now get more support.”

Working class anger

The hard right AfD in fact garnered a large share of its support from working class people, who traditionally voted for the SPD, but who had grown dischanted with the widespread crimes waves, and hostility aimed by Greens at traditional energy industries and jobs.

Greens and a number of Socialists have called for an accelerated shut down of German coal plants, many of which are located in NRW. German power companies, such RWE and EON, have seen billions in losses and tens of thousands of layoffs over the past years, a direct result of massive green energy subsidies and a run-away feed-in act.

The NRW election results bode especially ill for the German left nationally, as federal elections are slated for September. It had been speculated earlier that the SPD’s new leader Martin Schulz would have a chance at ousting Angela Merkel and lifting the leftists and greens back into power for the first time in over a decade. But already any added popularity Schulz may have brought to the party earlier appears to have fizzled. Moreover, The Greens, traditional coalition partners of the SPD, are near record lows in the opinion polls (near 6%).

There’s risk that September’s election will end in a rout for the DPD and Greens.

New potential NRW government no big fan of green energies

Although the CDU often pays lip service to green energies, they are in fact not so keen about pushing them through with vigor. The FDP has recently been becoming more vocal in opposing wind and solar energy outright in many locations, and rather favor limiting them to certain area located along motorways and offshore.

The winds of energy are truly shifting in Germany.


15 New Papers: Scientists Abandoning Claims Of Dominant Man-Made Influence On Arctic Climate

Natural Forcing Of Arctic Climate

 Increasingly Affirmed By Scientists

Gajewski, 2015

Three years ago a cogent paper was published in the prestigious scientific journal Nature that was surprisingly candid in its rejection of the position that the substantial warming and sea ice reduction in the Arctic occurring since the late 1970s should be predominantly attributed to anthropogenic forcing.

Dr. Quinhua Ding and 6 co-authors indicated in their paper that internal processes — natural variability associated with planetary waves and the North Atlantic Oscillation — are drivers of the recent Arctic warming and sea ice reduction, concluding that “a substantial portion of recent warming in the northeastern Canada and Greenland sector of the Arctic arises from unforced natural variability.”

Ding et al., 2014

Rapid Arctic warming and sea-ice reduction in the Arctic Ocean are widely attributed to anthropogenic climate change. The Arctic warming exceeds the global average warming because of feedbacks that include sea-ice reduction and other dynamical and radiative feedbacks.  We find that the most prominent annual mean surface and tropospheric warming in the Arctic since 1979 has occurred in northeastern Canada and Greenland. In this region, much of the year-to-year temperature variability is associated with the leading mode of large-scale circulation variability in the North Atlantic, namely, the North Atlantic Oscillation.”  
Here we show that the recent warming in this region is strongly associated with a negative trend in the North Atlantic Oscillation, which is a response to anomalous Rossby wave-train activity [planetary waves related to the Earth’s rotation] originating in the tropical Pacific. Atmospheric model experiments forced by prescribed tropical sea surface temperatures simulate the observed circulation changes and associated tropospheric and surface warming over northeastern Canada and Greenland. Experiments from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 models with prescribed anthropogenic forcing show no similar circulation changes related to the North Atlantic Oscillation or associated tropospheric warmingThis suggests that a substantial portion of recent warming in the northeastern Canada and Greenland sector of the Arctic arises from unforced natural variability.”

Since 2014, there have been several more scientific papers that have been published documenting the significance of natural forcing processes in the Arctic and how they may override a clear detection of an anthropogenic influence.

But 2017 already seems to be an exception.  Papers that document the dominance of natural forcing — or that don’t even mention anthropogenic forcing as a factor in the Arctic climate processes — keep on rolling in.

As a case example, in a paper discussing the mechanisms involved in “Arctic amplification” and sea ice loss, Kim et al. (2017) never once mention anthropogenic forcing, or carbon dioxide, as mechanisms affecting the Arctic climate.  In fact, in citing several other authors, they acknowledge that the physical processes involved in the forcing of Arctic climate are “subject to debate” and remain “an open question.”   In other words, not only is the position that humans exert a dominant influence on the Arctic climate not “settled science”, the anthropogenic influence may be so muted a factor that it is not even worth mentioning in a paper discussing forcing mechanisms.

1. Kim et al., 2017

Understanding the Mechanism of Arctic Amplification and Sea Ice Loss

“Sea ice reduction is accelerating in the Barents and Kara Seas. Several mechanisms are proposed to explain the accelerated loss of polar sea ice, which remains an open question. … Previous studies have proposed the physical mechanisms of Arctic amplification, which involve the effect of atmospheric heat transport (Graversen et al., 2008), oceanic heat transport (Årthun et al., 2012; Chylek et al., 2009; 10 Spielhagen et al., 2011; Onarheim et al., 2015), cloud and water vapor changes (Francis and Hunter, 2007; Schweiger et al., 2008; Park et al., 2015a; Park et al., 2015b), and/or diminishing sea ice cover (Serreze et al., 2009; Screen and Simonds, 2010a; Kim et al., 2016). The accurate physical process of the Arctic amplification, however, is subject to debate.”
“Despite the general consensus that heat transfer between the ocean and atmosphere is a crucial element in the physical mechanism of Arctic amplification and sea ice reduction, a quantitative understanding of individual contributions of heat flux components is still controversial. Further, the role of upward and downward longwave radiations in Arctic amplification is vague and not fully understood. Accurately quantifying the contribution of these different mechanisms, therefore, is required for a complete understanding of the Arctic amplification.”
[CO2 is not mentioned as a mechanism responsible for Arctic amplification or sea ice loss.]

Two months ago, Dr. Ding delivered another Nature paper — this time with 10 co-authors — that once again emphasized the Arctic’s natural variability, specifically the internal processes involved in the substantial reduction in Arctic sea ice since 1979.  The scientists concluded that as much as 50% of the Arctic sea ice decline in the satellite era has been natural, and that anthropogenic forcing may play a much smaller role than has previously been assumed in climate models.

Many other newly-published papers advance the position that natural, non-anthropogenic processes are significant or even dominant factors in shaping the Arctic climate.  A total of 15 are cited here categorically.

A ‘Substantial Chunk’ Of Sea Ice Loss/Warming Due To Internal/Natural Variability

2. Ding et al., 2017 (press release

“The Arctic has seen rapid sea-ice decline in the past three decades, whilst warming at about twice the global average rate. …  Internal variability dominates the Arctic summer circulation trend and may be responsible for about 30–50% of the overall decline in September sea ice since 1979. … [A] substantial chunk of summer sea ice loss in recent decades was due to natural variability in the atmosphere over the Arctic Ocean.”

3. Fan and Yang, 2017

The wintertime Arctic temperature decreased from 1979 to 1997 and increased rapidly from 1998 to 2012, in contrast to the global mean surface air temperature [which] increased between 1979 and 1997, followed by a hiatus… A recent study suggests a possible role of the Pacific Ocean decadal oscillation in regulating wintertime climate in the Arctic (Screen and Francis 2016).”
The ‘greenhouse effect’ of water vapor and clouds [CO2 not mentioned as contributing to the GHE] may amplify the effect of winds on Arctic winter climate.”
“The objectives of this study are to assess how much natural–internal variability has contributed to climate changes in these [Arctic] regions from 1979 to 2012 … In summary, the correlation analyses presented in this paper shows a natural mode of Arctic winter variability resulting from the Nordic–Siberian seesaw of meridional winds […] is associated with two-thirds of the interannual variance [cooling-warming] of winter-mean Arctic temperature between 1979 and 2012, and possibly contributed a substantial fraction of the observed Arctic amplification [1998-2012 warming] in this period.”

4. Seviour, 2017

Weakening and shift of the Arctic stratospheric polar vortex: Internal variability or forced response? … By comparing large ensembles of historical simulations with pre-industrial control simulations for two coupled climate models, the ensemble mean response of the vortex is found to be small relative to internal variability. There is also no relationship between sea-ice decline and trends in either vortex location or strength. Despite this, individual ensemble members are found to have vortex trends similar to those observed, indicating that these trends may be primarily a result of natural internally-generated climate variability.”

Natural Planetary Waves Forcing

5. Baggett and Lee, 2017

“The dynamical mechanisms that lead to wintertime Arctic warming during the planetary-scale wave (PSW) and synoptic-scale wave (SSW) life cycles are identified by performing a composite analysis of ERA-Interim reanalysis data. The PSW life cycle is preceded by localized tropical convection over the Western Pacific. Upon reaching the mid-latitudes, the PSWs amplify as they undergo baroclinic conversion and constructively interfere with the climatological stationary waves. The PSWs [planetary scale waves] flux large quantities of sensible and latent heat into the Arctic which produces a regionally enhanced greenhouse effect that increases downward IR and warms the Arctic two-meter temperature. The SSW life cycle is also capable of increasing downward IR and warming the Arctic two-meter temperature, but the greatest warming is accomplished in the subset of SSW events with the most amplified PSWs. Consequently, during both the PSW and SSW life cycles, wintertime Arctic warming arises from the amplification of the PSWs [planetary scale waves].”

6. Gong et al., 2017

During the past three decades, the most rapid warming at the surface has occurred during the Arctic winter. By analyzing daily ERA-Interim data, we found that the majority of the winter warming trend north of 70°N can be explained by the trend in the downward infrared radiation (IR). This downward IR trend can be attributed to an enhanced poleward flux of moisture and sensible heat into the Arctic by poleward propagating Rossby waves, which increases the total column water and temperature within this region. This enhanced moisture flux is mostly due to changes in the planetary-scale atmospheric circulation rather than an increase in moisture in lower latitudes.”

Solar Forcing Of Arctic Climate, Sea Ice Trends

7. Li et al., 2017

“Correlations between paleotemperature records from the North Atlantic and solar activity suggest that changes in solar output may cause significant shifts in the climate of the North Atlantic region. To test the role of solar activity on summer SST at our study site in West Greenland, we conducted a cross-correlation analysis between our reconstructed summer SST record and a total solar irradiance (TSI) series. The results indicate that the maximum correlation coefficient (0.284) of summer SST [sea surface temperatures] and TSI [total solar irradiance] records is obtained at nearly zero time-lag (-6 time-lag), which means that variations in solar activity affected the summer SST variability in the study area. … A significant positive relationship between summer SSTs on the North Icelandic shelf and solar irradiance reconstructed from 10Be and 14C records during the Holocene was also demonstrated by Jiang et al.  … Spectral analyses indicate that significant centennial-scale variations are superimposed on the long-term orbital trend. The dominant periodicities are 529, 410, and 191 years, which may be linked to the well-known 512- and 206-year solar cycles. Cross-correlation analyses between the summer SSTs and total solar irradiance through the last 5000 years indicate that the records are in phase, providing evidence that variations in solar activity impacted regional summer SST variability. Overall, the strong linkage between solar variability and summer SSTs is not only of regional significance, but is also consistent over the entire North Atlantic region.”

8. Stein et al., 2017

“The causes that are controlling the decrease in sea ice are still under discussion. In several studies changes in extent, thickness and drift of Arctic sea ice are related to changes in the overall atmospheric circulation patterns as reflected in the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Arctic Oscillation (AO). The NAO and AO are influencing changes of the relative position and strength of the two major surface-current systems of the Arctic Ocean. … The increase in sea ice extent during the late Holocene seems to be a circum-Arctic phenomenon, coinciding with major glacier advances on Franz Josef Land, Spitsbergen and Scandinavia.  The increase in sea ice may have resulted from the continuing cooling trend due to decreased solar insolation and reduced heat flow from the Pacific. … The increase in sea ice extent during the late Holocene seems to be a circum-Arctic phenomenon as PIP25-based sea ice records from the Fram Strait, Laptev Sea, East Siberian Sea and Chukchi Sea  display a generally quite similar evolution, all coinciding with the decrease in solar radiationThe main factors controlling the millennial variability in sea ice and surface-water productivity are probably changes in surface water and heat flow from the Pacific into the Arctic Ocean as well as the long-term decrease in summer insolation, whereas short-term centennial variability observed in the high-resolution middle Holocene record was possibly triggered by solar forcing.”

9. Sha et al., 2017

“The reconstruction indicates warm conditions with reduced sea-ice cover, associated with the Holocene Thermal Maximum, from ca. 6700 to 5000 cal. yr BP. … A distinct increase in sea-ice cover began at 1750 cal. yr BP, with absolute maximum values during the last millennium.  … In order to assess the contribution of different potential forcing factors to sea-ice conditions off West Greenland, we evaluated the relationship between our sea-ice reconstruction and solar activity, as well as with the strength of ocean circulation. The observed agreement between the sea-ice record and solar activity suggests that solar forcing may have been an important trigger for sea-ice variability off West Greenland during the last 5000 yr.”

Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) Forcing

10. Lapointe et al., 2017

“This paper investigates an annually-laminated (varved) record from the western Canadian Arctic and finds that the varves are negatively correlated with both the instrumental Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) during the past century and also with reconstructed PDO over the past 700 years, suggesting drier Arctic conditions during high-PDO phases, and vice versa. These results are in agreement with known regional teleconnections, whereby the PDO is negatively and positively correlated with summer precipitation and mean sea level pressure respectively. This pattern is also evident during the positive phase of the North Pacific Index (NPI) in autumn. Reduced sea-ice cover during summer–autumn is observed in the region during PDO− (NPI+) and is associated with low-level southerly winds that originate from the northernmost Pacific across the Bering Strait and can reach as far as the western Canadian Arctic. These climate anomalies are associated with the PDO− (NPI+) phase and are key factors in enhancing evaporation and subsequent precipitation in this region of the Arctic.”

Cloud Radiative Forcing

11. Solomon et al., 2017

“A number of feedbacks are found that damp the warming effect of the clouds. Thin mixed-phase clouds increase the downward longwave fluxes by 100 W m−2, but upward daytime surface longwave fluxes increase by 20 W m−2 (60 W m−2 at night) and net shortwave fluxes decrease by 40 W m−2 (partially due to a 0.05 increase in surface albedo), leaving only 40 W m−2 available for melt. This 40 W m−2 is distributed between the turbulent and conductive ground fluxes, so it is only at times of weak turbulent fluxes (i.e., at night or during melt) that this energy goes into the conductive ground flux, providing energy for melt. From these results it is concluded that it is the integrated impact of the clouds over the diurnal cycle (the preconditioning of the snowpack by the clouds at night) that made melt possible during this 3-day period. These findings are extended to understand the pattern of melt observed over the GIS. … Mixed-phase clouds are common at Summit (Shupe et al. 2013) and play a critical role in the Arctic surface energy balance (Shupe and Intrieri 2004), radiatively warming the highly reflective surface at Summit year-round (Miller et al. 2015).”

Most Of The Arctic’s Net Warming Occurred Before 1950

The instrumental record (HadCRUT) for Arctic temperatures indicates that there has been no significant net warming in the Arctic during the last ~80 years.  Newly published papers also affirm that much of the warming of the Arctic occurred before 1950, or before humans began emitting CO2 in large quantities.

12. Werner et al., 2017

“During the MCA [Medieval Climate Anomaly], the contrast between reconstructed summer temperatures over mid- and high-latitudes in Europe and the European/North Atlantic sector of the Arctic shows a very dynamic expression of the Arctic amplification, with leads and lags between continental and more marine and extreme latitude settings. While our analysis shows that the peak MCA [Medieval Climate Anomaly] summer temperatures were as high as in the late 20th and early 21st century, the spatial coherence of extreme years over the last decades seems unprecedented at least back until 750 CE. However, statistical testing could not provide conclusive support of the contemporary warming to supersede the peak of the MCA in terms of the pan-Arctic mean summer temperatures.”

13. Fernández-Fernández et al., 2017

The abrupt climatic transition of the early 20th century and the 25-year warm period 1925–1950 triggered the main retreat and volume loss of these glaciers since the end of the ‘Little Ice Age. Meanwhile, cooling during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s altered the trend, with advances of the glacier snouts.”
“The trend in Western Tungnahryggsjökull during the first half of the 20th century was a more rapid retreat, showing the highest average rates of the whole period (19.5 m yr−1). By 1946, this glacier had retreated almost 90% of the total recorded between the LIA maximum (1868) and 2005.”

14. Vachula et al., 2017

15. Krawczyk et al., 2017