Jeff Engr asked in EnvironmentGlobal Warming · 8 years ago

More science pointing to recent warming linked to solar activity. How does this impact your beliefs on AGW?

This paper documents that we are just now coming out the a Soalr Garnd Maxima. It also charts out solar activity going back severl centuries. Seems to match the variability of climate in the same time period. What are your thoughts? Does science impact your beliefs on AGW?


@ bubba; Honestly what I care about it the science. What can we demonstrate? What can we prove? Postulation while interesting and entertaining has very little scientific vlaue.

This paper incorporates what I expect to see in ANY and ALL scientific papers.

They list their sources for data. They identify their methods and everything is out in the open. They are not simply saying I found this and now I am correct in all things. The paper is goes as far as to acknowedge some known and possibly unknown weaknesses with using proxy data.

If all, or even most, papers linked to AGW did the same you would go a great deal further convincing me that AGW is fact.

12 Answers

  • Anonymous
    8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Show me a peer reviewed paper published in a journal by a CLIMATOLOGIST stating the Sun is responsible for GW and I will pay attention to it. Until you DA deniers can get a ticket for the dance, you might as well keep your prom dress in the closet.

  • Noah
    Lv 6
    8 years ago

    There are at least several dozen different cycles and sub-cycles that effect climate, some of them work against and some with other cycles. Solar maximum is only one of these cycles. If someone is trying to pin climate change over geological time on a single part of a complex web of an array of conflicting cycles, that someone is pulling someones leg.

    All of these complex cycles and sub-cycles work over either geological time, millions of years, or over shorter times spans of hundreds of thousands of years. Some events have an abrupt effect....massive volcanic explosions or a strike from a comet, or an asteroid impact will have a significant though short term effect. (short being relative to geological time.) The movement of entire continents and the rise and fall of mountain ranges also have an effect. Except for the abrupt 'natural' events there has never been a climate change in such a short period of time as the current situation.

    Going back to the times when the dinosaurs roamed the CO2 content of the Earth's atmosphere never went much above or below 350 ppm except during the last Ice Age. 12,000 years ago at the end of the last Ice Age the CO2 load stood at 286ppm. For the most part it stayed in that range until the Industrial Revolution...about 1830. Since then the CO2 content has increased steadily at roughly the rate of the burning of fossil fuels and land clearing. In 1950 it stood at it's pushing 400ppm and adding 15ppm per decade. Heat retained by this and other 'greenhouse gases' haven't warmed the overall atmosphere by much as the excess heat has gone to melt ice and warm sea far, so good. When the ice is mostly gone.....we just don't know.

    For those that say this is 'natural' they have a point...when you burn carbon bearing material that took millions of years to accumulate in less than 200 years the 'natural' effect of doing that is to release that carbon into our paper thin atmosphere all in a rush...returning the atmosphere to what it was in a much warmer and mostly ice free world. Either a CO2 rich atmosphere makes a significant difference in climate or it doesn't. All of the science, data and physics say it does...I gotta' go with that!

    While climate changes have occurred they've been over long periods of time...this climate change situation has happened in a very short 'historical' time frame and given that several of the 'cycles' would suggest a cooling effect the effect of an ever increasing accumulation of CO2 and methane has overcome those weak cycles and presented us with the current situation.

  • bubba
    Lv 6
    8 years ago

    Great paper. This may help develop a better model for incorporating solar activity, but it does not indicate that increased CO2 as a result of human activity is not a significant factor causing our current warming trend.

    Do you think this paper proves that human activity cannot be influencing our current warming trend? Or are you falling into the flawed thinking that because solar activity influences weather and climate, that human activity cannot possibly have a significant influence?

    I agree with you that this paper is very through, but it is also 88 pages. Most journals want to keep articles less than 20 pages. Lots of times, you have to publish large articles in parts. However, the parts are there, and they are typically well referenced. Many times, details are published and referenced in other articles. This can be a real PIA, even if you are very familiar with the details of the subject. You have to do a lot of reading to keep up. This does not mean that the information is wrong or there is a scam. It is about space are publish enough diverse materials that the journal make money.

  • Gringo
    Lv 6
    8 years ago

    How nice, the deniers have discovered a 2 year old paper.

    'We'll ignore that the papers' main subject is the development of a new method of obtaining historic solar activity and cherry-pick it to pretend it supports our cause when really it does not (Poptech does it all the time and no one has noticed). We'll equally ignore that this new method uses proxies (which we otherwise do not trust) from ice cores (bad) and tree-rings (worse) and 'a computer model' (which we otherwise claim does not work) and call it 'comprehensive' and start asking pseudo-intelligent questions about it on YA". Signed: The Deniers

    Usoskin in a 2004 paper:

    "During these last years [up to 2004] the solar total irradiance, solar UV irradiance and the cosmic ray flux has not shown any significant secular trend, so that at least this most recent warming episode must have another source."

    Solar Activity Over the Last 1150 Years: Does it Correlate with Climate?"

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  • 8 years ago

    I'm not a climatologist. Therefore picking papers and deciding how they fit into the science of climate is beyond my education, training, and specialisms. That's why we have universities that take students to study climatology. That's why we spend years educating them to PhD level. That's why I think the analysis of papers, examination of how those papers fit into grander schemes, whether the theories are consistent with other measurements, etc is a job for scientists, not for interested members of the public with no training or education in those areas.

    If people with NO qualifications in climate science believe they can arbitrate on scientific issues, then I believe that represents the most mind-numbing arrogance. The idea that someone suddenly can 'decide' the science of global warming without any training in that field is abhorent to me.

    I don't care what papers say. I care what scientists think of those papers. And for the moment, those who study the climate largely support AGW. If evidence arises that forces them to reconsider that theory, then they will reconsider that theory - this is how science has always worked. I'm not going to second-guess the conclusions the experts reach. I'm just going to listen to what they have to say. The moment I think I'm an expert in climatology, am capable of assessing their research, and feel I can discuss the issues with sufficient knowledge to present at a scientific conference, I'll offer an opinion on the science.

    I just wish other members of the public with no formal education in climatology would eat a large helping of humble pie.

  • 8 years ago

    My thoughts: You have made a fool of yourself yet again, Jeff. Copying-pasting deceit from the anti-science liar site Wattsup about things you don't understand. How many more hundreds of times will you do this? Several is spelled with an a. "Going back several centuries," the biggest cause of air pollution in the Los Angeles basin was smoke from Indian campfires. Does that history "impact" my "belief" on what is causing smog in LA today? No.

  • 8 years ago

    That solar activity affects earth's climate goes back to Herschel, in 1801. He noted that sunspot cycles correlated with wheat prices. Variations in solar activity correlate various warm and cold periods through recorded history, including the MWP and LIA. Temperature variations across the interglacial periods over millions of years have far exceeded those we have observed in our (very limited time span) surface temperature record.

    The warmists continue to claim that the variation in the sun's output cannot account for the magnitude of modern warming. This is an argument from ignorance. In fact, variations in the solar irradiance do not explain the temperature variations prior to the AGW era, either. Yet, the correlation is there, and so it suggests another mechanism at work, one that has either not been identified yet, or is still insufficiently understood.

    Either way, the idea that AGW is 'irrefutable' is propaganda, not science. But, you are trying to argue against what LeBon described as a 'religious sentiment,' using mere facts. The AGW belief system is impervious to such contradictions.

  • 8 years ago

    From a 2010 paper by Ilya G. Usoskin, the author of the paper you link. You can find this quote at the end, on page 22, his final point in the paper.

    "During these last 30 years the solar total irradiance, solar UV radiance and cosmic ray flux has not shown any significant secular trend, so that at least this most recent warming episode must have another source."

    As you were asking whether Usoskin's research affects my beliefs on AGW, it is important for you to understand what Usoskin is saying. It is that same as I explained in my first answer below, but it should help for you to understand it from Usoskin. In the paper you link, I do not see where he states what periods he covered, nor to do I see any place that it explains recent warming. In his 2010 paper he is very clear that solar activity cannot explain recent warming and is therefore not included in his correlations which cover historic periods only.

    Solar activity has and does affect global climate, but it is not the reason for warming over the past 40 years. Usoskin has found the same thing as Svensmark and others have. A small natural forcing can and does co-exist with a much more powerful CO2 forcing.


    It has been established that solar activity does indeed influence earth temperatures, but the amount of effect has been small compared to the effect of the composition of the atmosphere.

    About the time your linked study was published, 2008, Henrik Svensmark was claiming that solar activity was "the cause" of global warming. (That's one of the silly, dated and disproved videos that Maxx posts here everyday.) But Svensmark got hammered by other scientists because his conclusions did not match the data. Finally in 2009, Svensmark admitted that he had exaggerated his conclusions and that in fact the correlation he found could not even been seen statistically unless he added global warming from an unknown source of 0.14 degrees per decade. The effect of sunspots is some small fraction of the effect of global warming. (And 0.14 degrees per decade is exactly the rate of total warming detected by the UAH satellite database, so Svensgaard was explaining 0% of the warming since the 1970s.)

    A 2010 study by Georg Feulner found that even if the sun dropped into a minimum as deep as the Maunder Minimum, it would reduce warming by only 0.3 degrees by 2100 whereas CO2 will by then have caused warming of 3 degrees.

    Note that the study you link to makes no claims about solar activity overwhelming the greenhouse effect. And btw, this is no "more science"; this is four years old.

    There is a large body of evidence of the connection between solar activity --> Gamma Ray --> Clouds --> temperatures. There is however no evidence that the effect is more than 10% of the effect of an enhanced greenhouse effect at maximum.

    A key indicator is that warming of the past several decades has been greater at night than during days, the difference in temperatures between nights and days is decreasing. Also, the stratosphere has cooled as the troposphere warmed. This are both signatures of the greenhouse effect at work, and not a signature of astronomical or solar forcings. It is important to look at all evidence and to find the theory that explains all observations. A theory built on solar activity being the primary source of recent warming does not hold up; it has been disproved in multiple ways. However, a theory that CO2 is causing AGW does explain all observations including the natural deviations driven by solar activity.


    Oh, Maxx is already here with his debunked videos. And by "debunked", I mean debunked by the very people in the videos. Even the experts in those videos do not believe the videos are accurate. One, Carl Wunsch says publicly that it is a fraud. The other, Henrick Svensmark has admitted it is meaningless. If you are interested in what these researchers believe, you should read what they believe in their own published words, not crappy dishonest videos posted by a dishonest person. Henrik Svensmark is on record clarifying that solar activity has created only small deviations around a linear warming trend of 0.14 degrees per decade unrelated to solar activity. Since being so badly embarrassed by Mike Lockwood and other solar scientists in 2009, Svensmark has continued is research but has stopped claiming that the affects are more than a fraction of ongoing warming.

  • 8 years ago

    Maxx is completely right, solar activity is the highest it has ever been since the medieval warm period, but I think the tides have turned and we will have a cooler climate due to current solar activity going to the lowest since the Dalton Minimum, maybe the Maunder Minimum.

  • Jeff M
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    I think it's fairly well known that we are coming out of a Solar Grand Maximum. The height of this maximum was 50 years ago as we can see by looking at sunspot numbers.

    I am aware of this as are the majority of people who accept AGW in here as well. Solar input, however, gives off different frequencies than the Earth does.

    Here is measured solar input since roughly 1978 -

    Here are temperature variations over that time period -

    Explain how the decrease in solar output since then can explain the increase in temperatures over that time period. Especially considering the increase in temperatures over that time period is mainly attributable to increases in energy outside of the Sun's blackbody radiation curve.

    In summary, no it does not as I was and have been aware of this for a very long time now. You can not have greater warming at specific greenhouse gas frequencies while other frequencies remain mostly unchanged or are declining by attributing it to the Sun alone. You have to look at all possibilities and measure how those possible forcings and feedbacks are affecting temperatures.

    With regards to cosmic rays and solar activity you'll see that cosmic rays follow the 11 year sunspot cycle closely.

    You'll also see that there has been no increase in cosmic rays intensity over the time period in question. So, as stated in a previous response, solar output and cosmic rays can have measurable affects on climate there is substantial evidence that the associated warming lies outside of the frequencies associated with this type of warming.

    Maxx: Your response to Baccheus about going to watch Al Gore's video due to him stating that you are using videos that have been debunked and you arguing against Al Gore's video is a fallacy. Baccheus stated specifically that you should look at what the scientists are actually saying in their own peer reviewed studies. You are arguing against something that was never stated in an attempt to throw the wool over the eyes of other readers.

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