[Vision2020] Sunspots: 2009 Deepest Solar Minimum in Nearly A Century, Then 2010 Warmest Year in 131Years

Paul Rumelhart godshatter at yahoo.com
Sat Jun 18 18:13:38 PDT 2011

On 06/18/2011 11:47 AM, Ted Moffett wrote:
> The subject heading sums up the main point of this post.
> Odd (well, not really, actually what I've come to expect) that given
> your in-depth (?) research into solar activity and its relation to
> Earth's climate, you make no mention, in your sunspot comments below,
> of the very significant recent deep solar minimum in sunspot activity
> in 2009, the deepest solar minimum in nearly a century, according to
> NASA: "This is the quietest sun we've seen in almost a century,"
> agrees sunspot expert David Hathaway of the Marshall Space Flight
> Center:
> http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2009/01apr_deepsolarminimum/

Sure I did.  It was the part where I said (and I quote) "I started this 
a couple of years ago.  It was extremely boring at first,
because there would be stretches of sometimes months between sunspots."  
I've been watching the Sun, mostly daily, ever since.

> During and just after this deep solar minimum, Earth's average surface
> temperature in 2009 and 2010 remained among the top ten warmest years
> in the 131 year instrumental record from the Goddard Insitutue for
> Space Studies.
> In fact, 2010 was tied statistically with 2005 as the top warmest year
> in 131 years, according to GISS:
> http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/news/20110112/
> http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata/GLB.Ts+dSST.txt

Wasn't 2010 an El-Nino year?

> The following article from the Earth Institute at Columbia University
> mentions the 2009 deep solar minimum impacts on global temperature:
> 2000-2009: The Warmest Decade:
> http://www.earthinstitute.columbia.edu/articles/view/2620
>   "In 2009, it was clear that even the deepest solar minimum in the
> period of satellite data hasn't stopped global warming from
> continuing," said Goddard Institute for Space Studies director Dr.
> James Hansen.

It would appear that a small drop in total solar irradiance does not 
have an immediate effect upon surface temperatures.  However, it would 
be ill-advised to ignore the Maunder Minimum / Little Ice Age connection 
because of this.  There is a lot of heat currently in the system, much 
of it in the oceans.  Maybe it takes a few years to have an effect.  
That's if you trust the guys in charge of the surface temperature data 
sets, which I don't.

> ---------------------
> In 2009, during this deep solar minimum, there was speculation in the
> scientific community that we could be entering a prolonged period of
> very low solar activity, that "...sunspots could completely vanish
> around the year 2015."
> http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2009/03sep_sunspots/
> But this did not occur.  Solar cycle 24 has seen an increase in
> sunspot activity, with sunspot activity predicted for 2015 above the
> 2009 deep solar minimum.

According to my phone, which may be incorrect, we're actually in 2011 
right now.  The current sunspot cycle, which was much delayed, is 
currently running between half and two-thirds the power that the last 
cycle ran.  It's true that solar cycle 24 (the current one) has seen an 
increase in sunspot activity.  It's now in that part of the cycle.  It's 
turning out to be a rather dismal cycle for sunspots, though.

> There are always a wide variety of theories and speculations occuring
> in the science community on many issues.  Those with a biased agenda
> cherry-pick the theories and research to suit their confirmation bias
> filter, and conveniently ignore a balanced consideration of all the
> scientific research.
> On 6/17/11, Paul Rumelhart<godshatter at yahoo.com>  wrote:
> "For example, there is an interesting theory by a guy
> named Henrik Svensmark that states that a weak sun allows more cosmic
> rays to strike the Earth, leaving ionized air molecules for clouds to
> form around.  This causes a cooling of the Earth by shading the ground
> and by changing the albedo."
> Your depiction of the cosmic ray/cloud formation impacts on cooling
> the Earth's is misleading.  Given my reading on this scientific issue,
> "shading the ground" is not a major impact of cloud formation
> associated with cosmic rays on temperature, though changes in albedo
> are:
> A detailed analysis of Svensmark's cosmic ray/cloud theories from
> Skepticalscience.com at this website:
> http://www.skepticalscience.com/print.php?n=388

"Shading the ground" not having a major impact is clearly BS.  Ever 
stood outside on a hot day when the sun is out and had a cloud move in 
front of the Sun?  Cools it down, doesn't it?


> ------------------------------------------
> Vision2020 Post: Ted Moffett
> On 6/17/11, Paul Rumelhart<godshatter at yahoo.com>  wrote:
>> I've been meaning to post on this subject for a while, but have been
>> short on time.
>> You've probably all seen the news about some research that was unveiled
>> at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society that suggests that the
>> Sun will become more quiet over the next few years as sunspots become
>> rarer.  This is due mainly to a river of gas under the surface of the
>> Sun which disrupts sunspots.
>> Sunspots are holes in the outer layer of the Sun caused by magnetic
>> fields.  The more sunspots on the Earth-facing side of the Sun and the
>> hotter it is.  Of course, this varies only slightly in comparison to the
>> overall output of the Sun.
>> I just wanted to weigh in on this subject and to post some related
>> information about it.  I'll also give my take on it.  Not that anybody
>> cares.
>> First, here is a representative article on the subject from the BBC:
>> http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-13792479
>> Global warming alarmists (as I like to think of them) were quick to
>> rebut this idea.  Here is a representative article from Discover:
>> http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2011/06/17/are-we-headed-for-a-new-ice-age/
>> Here is a chart from NASA that shows solar cycle 24 (the one we're
>> currently in) compared to solar cycle 23.  It also shows their current
>> predictions for the rest of this cycle:
>> http://solarscience.msfc.nasa.gov/images/ssn_predict_l.gif
>> One of the reasons that this topic is so important is that the last time
>> sunspots declined for a long period of time during the Maunder Minimum,
>> we had the Little Ice Age, which followed the Medieval Warm Period.
>> Some people suspect there might be a link between the two events.  Here
>> is some info from Wikipedia about LIA and the Maunder Minimum:
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_ice_age
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maunder_Minimum
>> Now, the main objection to the LIA (aside from the whole "Hockey Stick"
>> fiasco) seems to be that it was a phenomenon local to Europe.  However,
>> there is a paper by Huang and Pollack (1997) that looked at 6,144 sets
>> of heat flow measurements obtained from all over the globe suitable for
>> reconstructing temperature over the Earth for the last 20,000 years and
>> concluded that the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age were both
>> global phenomena.  Here is a link to an article on CO2 Science about it:
>> http://www.co2science.org/articles/V3/N22/C3.php
>> Now, there have been lots of rhetoric from both sides of the fence about
>> this.  No, I don't think we ought to all be idling our Expeditions so we
>> don't get any colder.  I do, however, think there might be something to
>> this.  Every day when I get up in the morning, I check my email, check a
>> few forums I post on, and see how the sun is doing.  I like to follow
>> the sunspot number, and since I check it every day I watch the
>> individual sunspots form, decay, and rotate around the Sun.  It's an odd
>> hobby, to be sure, but I find it fascinating.  Here are a couple of
>> websites where you, too, can spend your time watching the Sun instead of
>> doing something constructive:
>> http://www.spaceweather.com/
>> http://www.solarham.com/
>> I started this a couple of years ago.  It was extremely boring at first,
>> because there would be stretches of sometimes months between sunspots.
>> Now, the cycle has finally fired up.  The current sunspot number as of
>> this writing is 62.  I've seen it up over a hundred, but that's still
>> low compared to the last cycle.
>> It makes sense to me that small variations in
>> ahttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maunder_Minimum large ball of fusing gas
>> that gives us almost all our heat might have an affect on climate.  The
>> professional climate modelers are convinced that the amount of
>> fluctuation is too small to make a difference, since TSI doesn't change
>> but by less than a percent.  The problem with this is that it, in my
>> opinion, is pure hubris.  We know so little about how the Sun actually
>> affects the Earth.  For example, there is an interesting theory by a guy
>> named Henrik Svensmark that states that a weak sun allows more cosmic
>> rays to strike the Earth, leaving ionized air molecules for clouds to
>> form around.  This causes a cooling of the Earth by shading the ground
>> and by changing the albedo.  This, of course, happens over a long period
>> of time, but adds up.  Poor Svensmark, lacking his stamp of authority by
>> the IPCC, has been shopping around begging for cloud chamber experiment
>> time.  Here is a youtube video describing the theory:
>> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EpDDqGqN16s
>> This is just one possible mechanism by which small variations in the
>> Sun's output can affect climate.  To me, it seems crazy to discount the
>> Little Ice Age and the Maunder Minimum as being local events are
>> assuming they are not causally related simply because the climate models
>> we've designed don't show as strong of a connection.  I consider most of
>> the climate models unproven, while the global warming community
>> apparently thinks they are evidence.
>> So, may take on it is that the science behind the sunspot predictions is
>> sound, there seems to be a connection between the last time this
>> happened and a large cooling down of the climate, and that dismissing it
>> out of hand is foolhardy at this stage.
>> Paul

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