New Study: Western North America Was Much Warmer And Drier With Peak Wildfire Rates When CO2 Was 265ppm

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The southwestern US was nearly a desert from about 9000 to 5000 years ago, when Holocene peaks in aridity, surface temperature, and wildfire rates occurred. Arctic sea ice was at its lowest extent of the Holocene during these years.

Image Source: Lachniet et al., 2020

A new extensively-referenced study (Lachniet et al., 2020) reviewing many dozens of climate records from across western North America has determined there is nothing unprecedented or even unusual about the modern climate for this region.

CO2 checked in at about 265 ppm during the Early and Middle Holocene, but today’s associated >400 ppm CO2 climate is much cooler and wetter, and there is much more Arctic sea ice present today.

During the Early to Middle Holocene (approximately  9 to 5 thousand years ago) this region could be characterized like this:

·2°C warmer, the warmest of the Holocene

·150 meters higher tree lines on mountains, indicating greater warmth

·5-17 m lower lake/pond levels

·“complete desiccation” or desert-like conditions in some areas

·peak wildfires

·“a warmer Arctic, reduced sea ice extent” – the lowest extent of the Holocene

Image Source: Lachniet et al., 2020



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5 responses to “New Study: Western North America Was Much Warmer And Drier With Peak Wildfire Rates When CO2 Was 265ppm”

  1. Chris Hanley

    These studies show that the atmospheric concentration of CO2 is not a necessary determinant of atmospheric temperature but — all else being equal — it is a sufficient factor viz. ~1C per doubling of concentration.
    I’m not a scientist but it is easy to see from multiple sources that the climate at any particular time is extremely complex, a result of many fluctuating factors working on different space and time scales sometimes in concert at other times in opposition.
    The CO2 obsession is a result of simple logical fallacies: the single cause fallacy, affirming the consequent, denying the antecedent, argument from ignorance and many others.

  2. John F Hultquist

    The first doubling seems to be a hard slog.
    Where do we start? Was it 285? Looking for 570.
    We are at 415 or so. 155 to go.

    Actually, seems like a good place to be.

    [Next milestone would be 1,140.]

  3. pochas94

    And then there is weather, which is unpredictable beyond about a week.

  4. ahlam st

    thank you the post

  5. ahlam st

    thank you for the articlr post

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