Continued Crumbling Consensus: Austrian Space Research Institute Director Baumjohann Says Sun Cannot Be Ignored!

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More bad news for the catastrophe-insisting climate alarmists who claim 95% of climate change is due to 0.04% trace gas CO2. Yet another prominent scientist, this one a big-league heavy hitter, has expressed serious doubt on CO2’s sole dominance during a recent interview. The once much ballyhooed consensus keeps falling apart.

Professor Wolfgang Baumjohann, Director of the Institute for Space Research of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. Graz, Austria. (Photo credit: Sissi Furgler)

Professor Wolfgang Baumjohann, Director of the Institute for Space Research of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, one of the world’s heavyweights in physics, gave an interview with the online Austrian flagship daily Der Standard here. Hat-tip: http://kaltesonne.de/.

The interview was in part to get his opinion on Fritz Vahrenholt’s and Sebastian Lüning’s bestselling skeptic book Die kalte Sonne, which has been creating a row within the scientific community throughout Germany and Europe since it was released earlier this month.

When asked about the role of solar activity on the Earth’s climate and whether Vahrenholt’s claims were nonsense, Baumjohann said:

There’s not a serious scientist claiming that CO2 emissions can be neglected. However, one cannot say that it’s the sole reason for global warming when it is obvious that increased solar activity correlates. One has to take that into account. When the solar dynamo runs more strongly, then a warming is logical.”

and

One seriously has to separate all the various cycles and make comparisons to see just how strongly solar activity impacts the climate.”

Actually, Vahrenholt and Lüning did precisely just that in their book. And the data that is available now show a clear, indisputable correlation. Here Baumjohann would likely have used much bolder words had he read that section of the book. Or maybe he’s just being diplomatic.

On the subject of cosmic rays and weakening magnetic fields (h/t: DirkH) Baumjohann is completely open to Svensmark’s theory and does not disguise that the theory is entirely plausible and just comes out and says that they directly impact the Earth’s climate (emphasis added):

Indeed, more cosmic rays and more solar particles would hit the top of the atmosphere – and this would have direct implications for our weather. We can’t tell yet whether these will be positive or negative consequences. Long term, climatic changes depend on cosmic rays and their influences on cloudiness.”

This is as major an endorsement as you’ll ever get!

We’ll remind readers that Vahrenholt in no way neglects CO2 as a factor. He is being chastised for cutting it down to size as a climate driver, saying that it is likely responsible for up to half of last century’s warming. But he dismisses that we are headed for an imminent catastrophe.

Note how Baumjohann contradicts Max Plank Institute Director Jochem Marotzke, who never even bothered to read Vahrenholt’s book, and who remains stuck on pre-AR4 science, i.e. focusing only on total solar irradiance and thus insisting the sun has not played any important role over the last century.

Baumjohann adds:

Us humans certainly know what life-giving energy the sun holds. Everyone feels it in the springtime. That’s a really personal experience.”

The latter part of the interview looks at the Earth’s magnetic field and the financing of scientific institutes.

Baumjohann’s Career Summary here

 

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11 responses to “Continued Crumbling Consensus: Austrian Space Research Institute Director Baumjohann Says Sun Cannot Be Ignored!”

  1. matti

    “However, one cannot say that it’s the sole reason for global warming when it is obvious that increased solar activity correlates. One has to take that into account. When the solar dynamo runs more strongly, then a warming is logical.”

    He is right on.
    One of the wrong reasons why solar activity was rejected by the global warming establishment is that they wrongly expected quick equilibrium in their calcualtions . Here are two sources that discuss this .It varies and may take much longer and can be at least one decade or solar cycle for instance before a major event like a large El Nino happens after a solar active period

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/04/07/solar-warming-and-ocean-equilibrium-part-3-solanki-and-schuessler-respond/

    http://www.fel.duke.edu/~scafetta/pdf/ATP2998.pdf

    1. DirkH

      …and what makes it worse is that an El Niño is a sudden discharge. That means that we don’t have a simple linear filter with a lag time, making the connection more difficult to detect mathematically. A test for Granger causality would fail.

  2. DirkH

    Baumjohann is specialist for plasma physics and planetary magnetic fields. He says in the interview about the consequences of the currently weakening magnetic field of Earth:
    “Indeed, more cosmic rays and more solar particles would hit the top of the atmosphere – and this would have direct implications for our weather. We can’t tell yet whether these will be positive or negative consequences. Long term, climatic changes depend on cosmic rays and their influences on cloudiness.”

    Looks like he’s very clearly in favor of the Svensmark hypothesis. And boy, he seems to be a scientific bigwig.

  3. matti

    DIRK H
    Here is another paper that focused on solar lag times . They talk about 10 -30 years . My own research found up to one solar cycle .

    http://lch.web.psi.ch/files/Publikationen/analytic/Eichleretal_GRL2009.pdf

    You are right about the compexity of the issue . But I am glad to see rational scientific people finally speaking up and recommending research in this solar area . It is a pity , that we lost 30 years with the IPCC type of a political organization chasing the dogs tail rather than focusing on the dog or several different dogs.

    1. Bruce of Newcastle

      Interesting that the temperature correlation is also with the previous solar cycle length. Dr Friis-Christensen is also a colleague of Prof Svensmark. I can see a Nobel physics double act on the horizon. Or maybe they can do a IPCC-like job and have all the coauthors, including Dr Lassen, the Uni of Aarhus group and the 63 of the CLOUD experiment, included too.

  4. R. de Haan
    1. Ed Caryl

      Look at the forecast temperature. Even lower!

  5. DirkH

    An interesting article about the PR campaign and press releases that were created to hype up the “Limits To Growth” book before its launch in 1971.
    http://diepresse.com/home/panorama/klimawandel/736315/Wie-PR-eine-Bombe-im-Taschenbuchformat-kreierte?direct=736316&_vl_backlink=/home/panorama/index.do&selChannel=330

    Club Of Rome, Dennis Meadow, Potoma Associates.
    The NYT called the book “hollow and misleading” – not realizing that they had encountered their own driving force for the next 75 years. (In 2036, the NYT ceased to exist as it had depleted its capital base 😉 )

  6. matti

    The average decadal sunspot number during the 1980′s, 1990′s and 2000′s were 84.2, 67.2 and 49.6 respectively. The mean global temperature anomalies during the same decades [HADCRUT3GL] were +0.079C, +0.235C and +0.411C respectively. I went back and crunched the numbers for UAH Satellite global temperature data and got mean temperature anomalies of -0.135C, -0.0295C and 0.0178C. So on a decadal basis the sun and the global temperatures seem to be going in different directions when measured by satellite or ground stations during the last 2-3 decades. However there is a correlation. It seems that as the sun went into a long decline and low activity since 2000[49.6 average sunspot # during the 2000’s], the global temperatures too have gone flat and show a negative least square trend, so you go and figure. I think there is an explanation that we have not yet clearly identified .There has been a correlation going back for thousands of years as shown by several peer reviewed papers posted during the last decade. In my studies, the connection was clearly there for each of the decades 1900 to 1940′s. In the 1950′s , the solar activity and global temperature anomalies went in opposite directions when we had major solar activity [91.7 average decadal solar sunspot #] but the global temperatures were flat .The connection was there again during the 1960′s and 1970′s when solar activity leveled off at a decadal average sunspot # of about 61 and we had cool spell in global temperatures during the 50′s, 60′s and 70′s. Scientists have been looking at various lag factors and other concepts to get a better handle on the sun /ocean/ atmosphere link. In my judgment the reason why sometime global temperatures and solar activity do not correlate sometime is that the ocean cycles are out of sink with solar effects during certain decades. For example PDO and the Pacific Ocean after the 1954-1957 long La Nina were in the negative or cool mode [ PDO was negative 1944- 1976] while the sun peaked in 1957.This tends to offset the higher solar effects warming even when lagged a decade later. Yet during the period 1980-2010, the sun was declining but both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans were in a warm mode [AMO and PDO both positive], resulting in the global surface temperatures going up while the sun was declining.
    If we ignore the sun as IPCC is doing , we do it at our own peril being unprepared for what lies ahead. The sun and ocean cycles [ see AMO and PDO both of which are negative ]are both in sink now for the next several decades . Both are heading for possibly 20-30 years of cooler weather as they enter their cool mode

  7. Luciano

    Bob TisdaleI was very much aware aware that the NASA article was about el nif1os cfieatfng the rotation of the earth. In fact that is exactly the point I was making that an AGW’ers can make a pretty good link between warming and pdo via enso if he chooses to do so. Hence Dr Spencer’s argument, while very interesting, resolves nothing. I merely added that if you can find an external source for this change of rotation then you can argue that it causes enso rather than being an effect of it. In any event the correlation seems certain and the conservation of momentum effect works in reverse too. Moreover you will find at least one Russian scientist and one Antipodean scientist who will argue for an external mechanism. As they aren’t peer-reviewed I didn’t mention it. But it fascinates me all the same.LeifThe it’s obvious part was a copy of Josh Willis (of ocean temperature measurements fame) who had used exactly the same argument on Andy Revkin’s blog to prove the CO2 link for the entire 20th century. I then pointed out that the IPCC mentions only a possible link from 1950. Now though (perhaps due to me) he’s changed his tune a bit to reflect the consensus position. Also I fully appreciate that you know more about tsi than anyone else but I’d merely make two points in my relative ignorance:1. Isn’t it all a question of scaling, ie how much effect you attribute to even a small change? One can certainly argue that the absolute change of CO2 in the atmosphere is miniscule too. When you do argue such a thing then you always get some fool who tells you something like a virus is a small change too but it can kill you . Again it’s merely the inconsistency between arguments that I am bringing up.2. Since sunspots historically show very good correlation with temperature and these are magnetic signatures isn’t tsi a red herring in the first place? Shouldn’t we look for a magnetic mechanism? I note in passing that apparently our own magnetosphere has reduced in strength by a good deal and that in turn should lessen our protection from the solar wind. I wouldn’t draw any conclusions as I am unqualified to do so but maybe something like that affects us, no?

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