Monday, January 30, 2012

Arctic environment by the middle of this Century

Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner, as head of Paleogeophysics & Geodynamics at Stockholm University, worked with sea level problems for 40 years in areas scattered all over the globe; published 546 scientific papers and 10 books on the subject. He was the former President of the INQUA Commission on Neotenotics (1981-89) and INQUA Commission on Sea Level Changes and Coastal Evolution (1999-2003.) He headed the INTAS Project on Geomagnetism and Climate (1997-2003). In 2000 he launched an international sea level research project in Maldives.

                     Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner
Paleogeophysics & Geodynamics, 
Rösundavägen 17, 13336 Saltsjöbaden, Sweden,
Republished from Energy & Environment Volume 22 No. 3 2011


At around 2040-2050 we will be in a new major Solar Minimum. It is to be expected that we will then have a new “Little Ice Age” over the Arctic and NW Europe. The past Solar Minima were linked to a general speeding-up of the Earth’s rate of rotation. This affected the surface currents and southward penetration of Arctic water in the North Atlantic causing “Little Ice Ages” over northwestern Europe and the Arctic.


Arctic environment by 2040-2050, next Solar Minimum, return to Little Ice Age conditions.


Both ACIA (2004) and IPCC (2001) predict a unidirectional opening of the Arctic. This is repeated in the last IPCC-report (2007). This has affected economical and trading scenarios, too. We often hear that, by year 2050 (if not even before), the Arctic will be ice-free allowing trans-Arctic voyages.

Karlén (2008) showed that there hardly is anything unusual going on in the Arctic region today, rather variations of the same type as recorded throughout the Holocene. Furthermore, he found those variations quite similar to the changes in solar activity as recorded by the atmospheric 14C-variations.

Höpner Petersen (1984) has shown that the low summer sun with only around +3- 9° C air temperatures cannot compensate the heat loss during the Polar nights with air temperatures at minus 20-40° C. Therefore, he argues that air temperature cannot melt polar ice, only ocean water-heat may do this. He states (Höpner Petersen, 2010) “Millions of years with polar nights created the deep, polar oceans, the polar currents and the polar life systems. The solar system controls the polar nights and their influence on the global climate in periods from tens, to hundreds, to thousands, to millions of years.”

In 1984, I launched the theory that angular momentum might be transferred back and forth between the solid Earth and hydrosphere; affecting primarily the surface circulation of the main ocean currents, and especially the Gulf Stream and Kuro Siwo Current which bring oceanic water masses from low to high latitudes (Mörner, 1984a, 1984b). This was followed up in a series of papers (Mörner, e.g. 1988, 1995, 1996a, 1996b). I then realized that the Solar Wind might affect the rotation of the entire terrestrial system (Mörner, 1996b, 1999). The Solar minima were found to correspond to periods of speeding-up of the Earth rate of rotation (Mörner, 2010).

Changes in the Earth’s rate of rotation and their feedback interactions are illustrated in Figure 1. Many variables are interacting. Changes in the oceanic surface circulation are proposed to play the dominant role with respect to centennial and multi-decadal changes in climate (Mörner, 1995). Variations in the Solar Wind are held as the external driving force (Mörner, 2010).

Long ago, Eddy (1976) proposed that Little Ice Ages occurred at periods of Solar minima. Indeed, there seems to be a good correlation between cooling events over northern Europe, the North Atlantic and the Arctic. During the Spörer, Maunder and Dalton Solar Minima, Arctic water was forced southwards all the way down to Mid-Portugal and the adjacent land areas experienced “Little Ice Ages” (Mörner, 1995, 2010). At the same time, however, the Gibraltar and NW Africa experienced warm events. This North–South opposed climate conditions are well understood in terms of differential distribution of current flow-masses along the northern and southern branches, respectively, of the Gulf Stream (Mörner, 1995, 2010).

The relation among centennial solar maxima/minima cycles, the Earth’s rate of rotation and the changes in dominant ocean surface current activity in the North Atlantic is illustrated in Figure 2. Today, we are at the end phase of a Solar Maximum and in some 30-40 years we will be in a new Solar Minimum. This paper will discuss the optional scenarios for the changes in climatic conditions in the Arctic within this century, with special regard to the effects of solar variability.


In the Global Warming scenarios (IPCC, 2001, 2007; ACIA, 2004) the Arctic will face a unidirectional arming. By the middle of this century, the Arctic is said to become ice-free (Figure 3A). This statement has lead economists and businessmen to postulate new trading routes and political competition within the Arctic. This concerns natural resources like oil and gas, water for fishing, location of potential harbours, etc.

In these scenarios, little or no respect is paid to the natural variability in climate, and the solar-terrestrial interaction.


If we “put the Sun back in the centre” (Mörner, 2006a, 2006b) – in analogy to what Copernicus did in the 16th century with respect to the old Aristotle’s and Ptolemaist geocentric concept – the prospect of the Arctic will be totally different, however (Figure 3B).

It is common knowledge that the Earth is predominantly heated from the Sun. Any variation in the solar activity might, therefore, be a potential factor for changes in the terrestrial climate.

The 11-year sunspot cycle is well known phenomena, and so are, to a lesser degree, also the 22-year cycle, the 80 year Gleissberg Cycle (sometimes even given as 60 year), the 120 year VMV Cycle and the 240 de Vries Cycle. The search for those cycles in terrestrial variables has a long history (e.g. Schove, 1983; Sanders & Fairbridge, 1995; Finkl, 1995). Still, the matter was far from clear.

Friis-Christensen and Lassen (1991) established an excellent correlation, for the last 150 years, between changes in the length of the sunspot cycle and general changes in global mean temperature. This gave evidence of a strong solar-terrestrial linkage, despite the fact that the physics behind this linkage remained unknown.

On the centennial basis, the solar activity (instrumental, observation, aurora, aaindex, 14C-production, 10Be in-fall) exhibits cyclic variations between Solar Maxima and Solar Minima (e.g. Stuiver and Quay, 1980; Hoyt and Schatten, 1993; Lean et al., 1995; Cliver et al., 1998; Lean and Rind, 1999; Bard et al., 2000; Bond et al., 2001; Mazzarella, 2007).

The Solar Minima – the Dalton Minimum 1800–1820, the Maunder Minimum 1645-1705, the Spörer Minimum 1420-1500 and the Wolf Minimum 1290-1350 –have attracted special attention because they have been proposed to correlate (e.g. Eddy, 1976) with cold periods or Little Ice Ages (Lamb, 1979). In the west European records (Guiot, 1992), there are quite clear cold minima at 1440-1460, 1687-1703 and 1808-1821 (Mörner, 1995, 2010), i.e. right within the last three Solar Minima.

The observed solar-terrestrial interactions have been interpreted in the following three ways, illustrated in Figure 4.

(1) Solar irradiance

The solar-terrestrial interaction is often explained in terms of variations in irradiance over the sun-spot cycle and it multiples (e.g. White et al., 1997). The variation in energy output during a sunspot cycle is found to be far too low, however, or only in the order of 0.2 % (Willson, 1997). Therefore, this mechanism does not apply per se. Only by assuming unknown and hypothetical amplifying forcing-functions may it be converted to effects large enough to explain observed changes in climate (e.g. Lean et al., 1995).

(2) Solar Wind and cosmic ray in-fall

In a number of papers, Svensmark (e.g. 1998, 2007) has proposed that Earth climate may be strongly controlled by cloud formation driven by cosmic rays which, in its turn, is modulated by the interaction of the Solar Wind with the Earth’s geomagnetic field. Svensmark has proposed that this mechanism is responsible not only for the short-term changes in climate, but also for the long-term changes through-out the Earth’s history (Svensmark & Calder, 2007). This is a splendid new theory.

(3) Solar Wind and Earth’s rate of rotation

Changes in Earth’s rate of rotation due to Solar Wind changes is a novel concept (Mörner, 1995, 1996b, 2010; Gu, 1998; Mazzarella, 2008), but several authors have noted a correlation between sunspot activity and Earth’s rotation (e.g. Kalinin and Kiselev, 1976; Golovkov, 1983; Mazzarella and Palumbo, 1988; Rosen and Salstein, 2000; Abarca del Rio et al., 2003; Mazzarella, 2007, 2008; Mörner, 2010, Le Mouël et al., 2010) or Solar-planetary cycles and Earth’s rotation (e.g. Scafetta, 2010). Due to the changes in rotation, the oceanic surface current system is forced to respond (Figure 1). As a function of this, the Gulf Stream alters its main distribution of water along the northern and southern branches, and simultaneously cold Arctic water can, at the speeding-up phases of Solar Minima, penetrate far down along the west coasts of Europe creating Little Ice Age environmental conditions (Figure 2).

Alternatively, a planetary beat (cf. Mörner, 1984a) may act not only on the Sun causing its variations in time, but also directly on the Solar Wind interaction with the magnetosphere by magnetic torques and/or by gravitational forces on the Earth’s rate of rotation (Scafetta, 2010). The correlation between the 60 years terrestrial LOD cycle and the 60 years cycle of changes in the orbital speed of the Sun around the centre of mass of the solar system (SCMSS) is striking (Scafetta, 2010, Fig 14).

Whatever, it is the response in oceanic circulation that generates the changes in climate (Mörner, 1995, 1996b, 2010) illustrated in Figure 1 and 2.

(4) A combination of points (2) and (3)

Finally, there are all reasons to believe that mechanism 2 and 3 may interact and operate simultaneously.


The Solar activity follows cyclic patterns, and can fairly easily be extended into the future. What happened in the past will also happen in the future. The combination of cycles can be done in different ways. Originally, we used a combination of the 60 year “Gleissberg” and 240 year De Vries cycles for the past 600 years and extended it into the Future giving a new Solar Minimum at around 2040-2050 as given in Figure 5 (Mörner et al., 2003; Mörner, 2003, 2006a, 2006b, 2007).

Later, I use the Solar Irradiance curve of Bard et al. (2000), noting that this curve, in fact, rather should be labelled “a Solar Wind Curve” as it is constructed from the variations in cosmogenic nuclides controlled by the variations in shielding capacity of the Earth’s geomagnetic field as given in Figure 4 (cf. Mörner, 2010). Along this curve (Figure 6) I have marked the changes recorded between Gulf Stream stages 2 (above) and 4 (below) situations as given in Figure 2 (cf. Mörner, 2010). In the middle of this century (at about 2040-2050), we should, by cycle extrapolation, have a Future Solar Minimum when the past Gulf Stream situation should repeat; i.e. we would have a new stage 4 situation with “Little Ice Age” conditions in Europe and in the Arctic (Figure 7).

This is in sharp contrast to the scenarios of IPCC (2001) and ACIA (2004), which predict a unidirectional continued warming leading to the opening of the Arctic basin within this century. Their prediction is based on modelling excluding the effects of the Sun, however.

Personally, I am convinced that we need to have “the Sun in the centre” (Mörner, 2006a, 2006b), and doing so, we are indeed facing a new Solar Minimum in the middle of this century. Whether this minimum will be as the past three once were (Figure 6), or it will be affected by anthropogenic factors, is another question.

 The date of the New Solar Minimum has been assigned at around 2040 by Mörner et al. (2003), at 2030-2040 by Harrara (2010), at 2042 ±11 by Abdassamatov (2010) and at 2030-2040 by Scafetta (2010), implying a fairly congruent picture despite somewhat different ways of transferring past signals into future predictions.
The onset of the associated cooling has been given at 2010 by Easterbrook (2010) and Herrara (2010), and at “approximately 2014” by Abdassamatov (2010). Easterbrook (2010) backs up his claim that the cooling has already commenced by geological observations facts.

At any rate, from a Solar-Terrestrial point of view, we will, by the middle of this century, be in a New Solar Minimum and in a New Little Ice Age (Figure 7). This conclusion is completely opposite to the scenarios presented by IPCC (2001, 2007) as illustrated in Figure 3. With “the Sun in the centre”, no other conclusion can be drawn, however.


In the years 1997-2003, I headed an INTAS project on “Geomagnetism and Climate”. It was within this project that we lay the ground for the view on the Solar-Terrestrial interaction (presented at the EGU-AGU-EGS meeting in Nice, 2003), later developed and integrated in the way here presented.


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Reviewed by: Professor Don J. Easterbrook
Professor emeritus in geology at Western Washington University, Bellingham, USA.

UK CRU/Met Office confirms: Warming deceleration trend for last 15 years; Sun hibernation till 2100

From the time this blog (almost 2 years ago) was launched we were warning it was coming. Here it is. The UK Met Office and University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit (UEA-CRU) yesterday made two significant admissions that vindicate us - climate sceptics.

a.     Based on readings from more than 30,000 measuring stations, the data was issued last week without fanfare by the UK Met Office and the University of UEA-CRU. It confirmed that the rising trend in world temperatures ended in 1997. See fig above:

Latest data from NASA / GISS too confirms the robust deceleration of global warming, revealing the non-significant impact on global temperatures by CO2.
 “From the 2001 peak of a +3.48°C/century temperature rate, it has now fallen at the end of 2011 to an almost flat rate of +0.04°C/century temperature increase. Per the actual evidence, the increasing atmospheric levels of CO2 (grey arrow and grey area of charts) has zero influence on whether global temperatures are accelerating or decelerating.”
b.     After emitting unusually high levels of energy throughout the 20th Century, the sun is now heading towards a ‘grand minimum’ in its output, threatening cold summers, bitter winters and a shortening of the season available for growing food. Solar output goes through 11-year cycles, with high numbers of sunspots seen at their peak. We are now at what should be the peak of what scientists call ‘Cycle 24’ but sunspot numbers are running at less than half those seen during cycle peaks in the 20th Century. Analysis by experts at NASA and the University of Arizona – derived from magnetic-field measurements 120,000 miles beneath the sun’s surface – suggest that Cycle 25, whose peak is due in 2022, will be a great deal weaker still. Much worse, the sun’s output is likely to progressively decrease until 2100.

When both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans were cold in the past, such as from 1940 to 1970, the climate cooled. The Pacific cycle ‘flipped’ back from warm to cold mode in 2008 and the Atlantic is also thought likely to flip in the next few years to its negative mode. 

For the last two decades, warmist climatologists found it difficult admitting that the sun and oceans – not CO2 – caused much of the global warming between 1970 and 1997. No more as prospects draw near of a mini ice age that could rival the 70-year temperature drop that saw frost fairs held on the Thames in the 17th Century.

My pal, James Delingpole of the UK Telegraph jocularly headlined his last post as “Children just aren't going to know what sun is”. James of course was taking a dig at Dr. David Viner, UEA-CRU climatologist who prophesized in 2000 “Children just aren't going to know what snow is”.  But this is not a laughing matter and future children living in the mid latitudes may not see much of the sun in any year, if it all it remains in hibernation till 2100.

The gravy train which NGOs like Oxfam, Greenpeace; ChristianAid, ActionAid (and their likes) had hitched on to during the last two decades are coming to an abrupt end. And as they pick themselves up from the crash, they will find that if they survived, only to end up a laughing stock. Their advocacy and programmes were singularly focussed to “adapting” to global warming at a time when the planet was actually fast hurling into a Little Ice Age.  It is the same kind of tragic irony if India were to amass their entire defence forces in the southern coastlines to counter Sri Lanka and Maldives when their real security threats were China and Pakistan on their northern borders! That’s the kind of big hole the bust of the global warming scam punched into the credibility of these NGOs! 

There could be several alternatives why these NGOs find themselves in this wretched predicament. The first could be that they had no idea what the whole science of climatology was about. If so, why did they arrogate themselves the right to prescribe national and international policies? And having done so, what does it make them out to be? Scamsters?? The second alternative could be that they had the requisite climatology expertise but they nevertheless choose to misinform and implement dubious programmes as dictated by their funding compulsions. If so, what does it paint them to be? Prostitutes?? And if this agenda, restricting development of developing countries all in the name of curbing "climate change"; what does it paint these NGOs? Eco-imperialists? And being eco-imperialists and still talking on behalf of developing countries, what character do these NGOs demonstrate? Hypocrites? In all these cases, the damage they have inflicted is not merely to themselves but the NGO sector as a whole. And that’s the sad part. 

The Columbia Journalism Review provides us an insight to the workings of an INGO:
“Lauren Gelfand, a correspondent for Jane’s Defence Weekly who is based in Nairobi, took a year off from journalism to work for Oxfam. Gelfand says that her Oxfam experience helped her to understand just how much attention NGOs put on getting their story told. All the talking points are carefully worked out….
It’s a huge bureaucracy and there are as many levels of control as in any government... To be fair to the NGOs, Gelfand says, it’s easier to sell a famine than to effect real, common-sense policy change. And, she says, she continues to believe that most aid workers do what they do because they want to make a difference. Nonetheless, alot of what Oxfam does is to sustain Oxfam.” 
But these NGOs wield great power – and yet are accountable to no one. And why should this be? The issue of accountability is thorny for NGOs. Unless, an NGO has a very specific and defined mandate with a target population, such as saving tribal livelihoods in the Amazon forest, its client base will be so broad that it’s almost impossible to judge whether it is being responsive to its intended clients. In effect, there are often no specific clients to hold an NGO accountable. 

This is probably why it would be business as usual for NGOs. If one scam ends, they will probably enter another as lucrative as the last “to sustain themselves”. Would the Board of Directors of these NGOs offer to quit? Probably not. Would the CEO of their (international) corporate office quit? Probably not. Would their country directors in India quit? Probably not. They probably have skins thick as a rhino and stick to their chairs like limpets!!
Dr. Sam Vaknin, author of "NGOs: The Self-Appointed Altruists" once commented:
 "In both types of organizations - Western NGOs and NGOs elsewhere - there is a lot of waste and corruption, double-dealing, self-interested promotion, and, sometimes inevitably, collusion with unsavory elements of society. Both organizations attract narcissistic opportunists who regards NGOs as venues of upward social mobility and self-enrichment. Many NGOs serve as sinecures, "manpower sinks", or "employment agencies" - they provide work to people who, otherwise, are unemployable. Some NGOs are involved in political networks of patronage, nepotism, and cronyism.

Narcissists are attracted to money, power, and glamour. NGOs provide all three. The officers of many NGOs draw exorbitant salaries (compared to the average salary where the NGO operates) and enjoy a panoply of work-related perks. Some NGOs exert a lot of political influence and hold power over the lives of millions of aid recipients. NGOs and their workers are, therefore, often in the limelight and many NGO activists have become minor celebrities and frequent guests in talk shows and such. Even critics of NGOs are often interviewed by the media (laughing).

Finally, a slim minority of NGO officers and workers are simply corrupt. They collude with venal officials to enrich themselves.”

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Why the Models are So Bad - And What the Rest of Winter Holds in Store

For all the avid meteorologists out there, we all know the models have been horrible this winter. The thing we don't know is why. I believe I have an answer for you.

A common piece of knowledge is that change takes time to process. The same goes for computer models. What they may be indicating is an upcoming pattern change, and are thus having a difficult time forecasting. Or it could just be a bad model winter. But i'm having a gut feeling that the latter option is more unlikely.

So what does the rest of winter hold in store? Well, let's take a look overseas first.

What I have found over the years is that weather in Europe is similarly reciprocated in the US a short time after. Looking at the 16 day forecast temperature anomalies produced by the GFS, the model is forecasting Europe to go into a freeze of sorts, with widespread anomalies of -5 degrees or more.

So what do temperatures in Europe have to do with our weather? As explained above, Europe weather can be reciprocated into our weather. If that holds true, I believe our pattern change is a short time away, which would also spell the model's inconsistency problems out.

I am using the CMC as a forecast because, as you see, it has much less flawed runs against verification than other models do. That is, there are less gray lines (past forecasts) leading far away from the verification, thus increasing my confidence in the forecast. Recently, the Arctic Oscillation has been negative- a sign of the changing atmosphere. The stratosphere and associated polar vortex have taken big hits recently and are staggering around, barely able to be held up on their own. If we can get one more good SSW (sudden stratospheric warming), I believe this cold will be forced to come south very quickly as the polar vortex breaks. The negative AO also supports cold air in the US, which could be the reciprocation of the cold Europe land mass

I am using the CMC for the same reasons i used the CMC for the AO, and those reasons are mentioned above. The CMC tells that the NAO is negative and should continue to be that way for a while. I find that the NAO and AO are very closely related, and thus it is possible for both to go negative simultaneously. That appears to have happened in this scenario. These AO and NAO are only short range forecasts, and while they appear to not contribute to the rest of winter forecast, they do. We have seen less strong positive days and more negative days of the AO and NAO this month than last- a sign that the pattern regime holding in the warmth and holding out the cold is weakening.

My thoughts

I'm still thinking a change to more snow and cold is in the cards. I find it way too early to throw in the towel on this winter, especially with these latest AO, NAO, Temp. Anomaly forecasts and data presented here today. I think it is still possible a good Nor'easter will come around. When it does, it could be "major". As for the storm track, the jet stream should shift at least slightly south, bringing Chicago, Des Moines, Detroit into possible target zones for snowstorms.