Tree rings as a proxy for historical ENSO reconstruction

From the University of Hawai’i’s International Pacific Research Center at Mānoa, comes this proxy reconstruction that does some similar things the infamous hockey stick reconstruction, but doesn’t need to pull any statistical “tricks” to make the case. Our old friend the Bristlecone pine in the southwest USA is the test subject again. Like Mann et al, they combined the recent instrumental record of ENSO variation with the proxy reconstruction record, except they didn’t need to delete any data, nor cover up any curves that didn’t behave as they wished. “Mike’s nature trick” wasn’t needed.

Why? Well it has to do with the Bristlecone pine being a better proxy for precipitation than temperature, and as we know, El Niño gives some significant precipitation impacts to the desert southwest. I’ve covered the issue of “treemometers” here and here previously, and they are worth a read as a refresher for this new paper.

They write:

During El Niño, the unusually warm surface temperatures in the eastern Pacific lead to changes in the atmospheric circulation, causing unusually wetter winters in the US Southwest, and thus wider tree rings; unusually cold eastern Pacific temperatures during La Niña lead to drought and narrower rings.

Liebig’s Law in a nutshell. In a desert, water is the limiting factor for growth, temperature, not so much. So I’m inclined to trust this reconstruction a bit more than I’d trust Mann’s. The test will be when somebody asks for the data for replication purposes.

El Niño amplitude derived from North American tree rings (blue) and instrumental measurements (red). The green curve represents the long-­‐term trend in El Niño strength. (Individual El Niño events occur typically at intervals of 2-­‐7 years.) Periods of strong El Niño activity are indicated by amplitudes above 1.0. Superimposed on a general rising trend, cycles of strong activity occurred about every 50–90 years. - click to enlarge

Tree Rings Tell a 1100-Year History of El Niño

El Niño and its partner La Niña, the warm and cold phases in the eastern half of the tropical Pacific, play havoc with climate worldwide. Predicting El Niño events more than several months ahead is now routine, but predicting how it will change in a warming world has been hampered by the short instrumental record. An international team of climate scientists has now shown that annually resolved tree-ring records from North America, particularly from the US Southwest, give a continuous representation of the intensity of El Niño events over the past 1100 years and can be used to improve El Niño prediction in climate models. The study, spearheaded by Jinbao Li, International Pacific Research Center, University of Hawai’i at Manoa, is published in the May 6 issue of Nature Climate Change.

Tree rings in the US Southwest, the team found, agree well with the 150-year instrumental sea surface temperature records in the tropical Pacific. During El Niño, the unusually warm surface temperatures in the eastern Pacific lead to changes in the atmospheric circulation, causing unusually wetter winters in the US Southwest, and thus wider tree rings; unusually cold eastern Pacific temperatures during La Niña lead to drought and narrower rings. The tree-ring records, furthermore, match well existing reconstructions of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation and correlate highly, for instance, with δ18O isotope concentrations of both living corals and corals that lived hundreds of years ago around Palmyra in the central Pacific.

Bristlecone trees, such as this over a thousand-year-old tree in the Great Basin National Park, contributed to the tree-ring record on El Niño. Credit: Image courtesy International Pacific Research Center

“Our work revealed that the towering trees on the mountain slopes of the US Southwest and the colorful corals in the tropical Pacific both listen to the music of El Niño, which shows its signature in their yearly growth rings,” explains Li. “The coral records, however, are brief, whereas the tree-ring records from North America supply us with a continuous El Niño record reaching back 1100 years.”

The tree rings reveal that the intensity of El Niño has been highly variable, with decades of strong El Niño events and decades of little activity. The weakest El Niño activity happened during the Medieval Climate Anomaly in the 11th century, whereas the strongest activity has been since the 18th century.

These different periods of El Niño activity are related to long-term changes in Pacific climate. Cores taken from lake sediments in the Galapagos Islands, northern Yucatan, and the Pacific Northwest reveal that the eastern–central tropical Pacific climate swings between warm and cool phases, each lasting from 50 to 90 years. During warm phases, El Niño and La Niña events were more intense than usual. During cool phases, they deviated little from the long-term average as, for instance, during the Medieval Climate Anomaly when the eastern tropical Pacific was cool.

“Since El Niño causes climate extremes around the world, it is important to know how it will change with global warming,” says co-author Shang-Ping Xie. “Current models diverge in their projections of its future behavior, with some showing an increase in amplitude, some no change, and some even a decrease. Our tree-ring data offer key observational benchmarks for evaluating and perfecting climate models and their predictions of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation under global warming.”

###

This research was funded by the National Science Foundation, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, National Basic Research Program of China, and the National Natural Science Foundation of China.

Citation: Jinbao Li, Shang-Ping Xie, Edward R. Cook, Gang Huang, Rosanne D’Arrigo, Fei Liu, Jian Ma, and Xiao-Tong Zheng, 2011: Interdecadal modulation of El Niño amplitude during the past millennium. Nature Climate Change.

Source here (PDF)

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120 thoughts on “Tree rings as a proxy for historical ENSO reconstruction

  1. What’s maybe very interesting is that their appears to eliminate ENSO as the main cause of global cooling (just eyeballing the graph) but not global warming.

  2. So you have had many posts pointing to the importance of ENSO for global mean temperatures, and now you are persuaded that bristlecone pines can give information about ENSO, but the idea that bristlecone pines might given information about global temperature is so outlandish that people looking into this are the worst scientists in the world? Just checking the logic here.

  3. “Since El Niño causes climate extremes around the world, it is important to know how it will change with global warming,” says co-author Shang-Ping Xie.

    ____________________________________________________________

    Nicely done until Xie et al. got to the cause-effect tripwire, and fell flat on their face…

    Just a thought, but maybe, just maybe, it is the modulations in El Nino which drive global temperatures, not the other way around. Given our current level of knowledge, climate scientists should, at the very least, be keeping an open mind on this issue.

    Flawed thinking, or a need to throw a bone to the global warming police to get their paper through the peer-review process?

  4. So much for the instant attribution of bad weather to AGW.
    And look at that Oscillation correlation? Whoa.
    And historically we live in a time of very minor fluctuations. Makes the Warmists look like hysterics. No wonder some believe that AGW is totally contrived and a fraud.

  5. Where’s the corresponding La Nina graph?
    How do you distinguish from an El Nino that missed the region from a La Nina that turned out cold & dry?

  6. Fred.
    The idea that a tree responds to local precipitation, is much more logical than that a tree responds to warming somewhere else in the world!
    However, the problems using Bristlecones as proxies are well-known, so this study should be taken with a few mines of salt!

  7. I realize that “eye-balling” is not a good scientific practice, but this chart appears to suggest the trend (green line) in ENSO is roughly flat for the last two hundred years. Are my eyes fooling me?

  8. Being that it was a La Nina year, it wasn’t all that dry for areas of the SW. That tree from the Great Basin Park experienced wetter conditions this year. CA, NV, and UT experienced very wet conditions this winter. AZ and NM were pretty dry though. I realize they are using corals too, but you still have to be careful, because other weather patterns do play in here in the SW US.

    http://www.hprcc.unl.edu/maps/current/

  9. Fred, no trolling, please. It would be helpful to understanding climate if the multiple factors influencing tree growth could be separated out. Anthony gives any research that abides by the long-standing methods of science and reasoning a fair shot to make it’s case. Hyperbole, extrapolation beyond the data, unwarranted speculation, unsupported assumptions, and data-fudging get the criticism they deserve.

  10. Interesting study and it is from this apparently accurate from the information given. I don’t see any correlation with AGW and didn’t see where the authors did either. My global warming theory? I predict this continent, both north and south will within the next six years heat up to whatever temperature is generated by a nuclear explosion .

  11. I’d like to go back 2000 years to see two full 1000 year solar ‘cycles’ i.e. Roman Warm Period, Dark Ages, Mediaeval Warm Period, Little Ice Age, Modern Warm Period.

    The period covered shows 1000 to 1600 as a period of weaker El Ninos which was the period when the level of solar activity would have been declining from the peak of the Mediaeval Warm Period to the bottom of the Little Ice Age.

    Then the period 1600 to date with increasing solar activity and stronger El Ninos.

    So what we do have is weaker El Ninos for about 500 years whilst the level of solar activity was declining and stronger El Ninos for about 500 years whilst the level of solar activity was rising.

    A comparison with the previous 1000 year span would be interesting but I suspect that the further back one goes the less reliable is the data hence possibly the El Nino strength of the Mediaeval Warm Period could be understated.

    Anyway so far as it goes this data does show a persuasive correlation between solar activity levels (or rather the trend in such levels) and the strength of El Nino events.

    That ties in nicely with my proposition that the level of solar activity alters the surface pressure distribution, global cloudiness and albedo and thus the amount of energy getting into the oceans to fuel El Nino.

  12. Fred says:
    May 7, 2011 at 10:18 am

    So you have had many posts pointing to the importance of ENSO for global mean temperatures, and now you are persuaded that bristlecone pines can give information about ENSO, but the idea that bristlecone pines might given information about global temperature is so outlandish that people looking into this are the worst scientists in the world? Just checking the logic here.

    No, you’re not “checking the logic”. You’re just being a jerk, trying to sound precious and smart, and failing badly.

    If you thought about what you just said, you’d realize that a given proxy is very often valid for one thing (say precipitation, as in this case) and not be valid for something else (say, long term temperature trend).

    Duh …

    w.

  13. If it’s cold, there’s a lot of snowmelt, good for the trees. But if it’s hot, there’s convective rain, good for the trees. How do you tell the difference?

  14. I must confess to being surprised there was no correlation between the El Nino strength and both the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age.

  15. As far as proxy studies go, this seems to be an improvement. It is not perfect; however, it has more of an empirical component. They are trying to tie ENSO phases to periods of warming and cooling and to tree ring growth. That is the right direction to go. If proxy studies are to be used at all then scientists must explain all of the changes in proxy behavior. By contrast, neither Briffa nor other members of The Team have explained the famous “hidden decline” and, apparently, they long ago abandoned research on it. This contribution by Jinbao Li on the effects of moisture that are tied to ENSO is a step in the right direction. Also, notice that the hockey stick is gone. Notice that recent warming is not exceptional. Finally, keep in mind that the hardcore modelers around Schmidt do not recognize ENSO as a physical process at all but treat it as statistical noise. So, this article is quite a departure from Schmidtian Alarmism.

  16. Werner Brozek said:

    “I must confess to being surprised there was no correlation between the El Nino strength and both the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age.”

    But there is.

    The El Ninos were weak for over 500 years during the descent and have been stronger during the subsequent recovery.

    And that correlates with solar activity levels too.

  17. Anything is possible says:
    May 7, 2011 at 10:34 am

    Flawed thinking, or a need to throw a bone to the global warming police to get their paper through the peer-review process?

    This is what really bugs me about climate science…always giving a nod to CAGW, or AGW, or just GW, never leaving it out of the narrative. As Willis points out, tree rings are great moisture proxys, and not so good as treemometers. The rings are a reflection of mass generated while nutrient uptake was optimal…more likely when moisture is optimal than temperature. A relationship to a EN wet desert is a good correlation…until that rather boneheaded nod occurs. It is really difficult to keep reading when GW or CC pops up.

  18. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 7, 2011 at 11:13 am
    I’d like to go back 2000 years to see two full 1000 year solar ‘cycles’ i.e. Roman Warm Period, Dark Ages, Mediaeval Warm Period, Little Ice Age, Modern Warm Period.

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/newpdsi.html

    select area 35/46/47/36/58 etc.
    You can download the data from these sets too.

  19. To believe in tree rings requires that you believe 1/10th of a degree makes a difference to a tree……

    and that warmer air holds more moisture and makes it colder and snow more

    And requires that you believe that one thousand trees got it wrong….
    …but eight, and only eight of them, got it right

  20. Long term, it appears the amplitude of El Nino is increasing, and it began WAAAAAY before CO2 started to rise. You could possibly conclude that CO2 has absolutely no bearing on ENSO….

  21. rbateman says:
    May 7, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Thanks, that looks useful but it will take me a while to work out how to operate it.

    In advance I suspect that it will show stronger El Nino events leading up to the MWP and weaker El Nino events leading up to the Dark Ages which would presumably accord with levels of solar activity at those times too.

  22. Liebig’s Law is usually thought of as relating only to nutrients, but includes, or should include, other factors such as moisture, humidity (which is not quite the same thing), ultra violet light, carbon dioxide, etc. I am a lifelong fuchsia lover currently living in an area where only a very few fuchsia types will grow satisfactorily. Most fuchsias will cease growth when the temperature drops to 6C, and will re-activate when the temperature rises to 8C. Several species will grow wild from escapes but only on western coastlines. Their sunlight requirements differ widely. Generally they love high humidity and will take fairly high temperatures provided that their individual sunlight tolerance is not exceeded. I have satisfactorily grown some types in the tropics in full sun at much higher temperatures than we experience here on the Natal south coast. The debilitating factor here (I believe) is high summer nighttime temperatures, 20 – 28C, in conjunction with very high humidity. They will not take the two together at night. Most fuchsia growers could not tell you that because nobody else makes the attempt to grow a plant that is just not suited to the area.

    My point is that although we may have “experts” in the field of tree ring interpretation, I am not sure that we have any devotees who have spent much of their adulthood spare time growing bristle cone pines. If one has no intimate knowledge of the behavior of a plant in varying environments the ability to interpret must be considerably circumscribed.

  23. kim says:
    May 7, 2011 at 12:21 pm
    Hook that beaut to the solar cycles. Ready, get set, we’ve gone?
    Except that that graph shows no correlation with anything solar.

  24. Mustafa says: “I realize that ‘eye-balling’ is not a good scientific practice, but this chart appears to suggest the trend (green line) in ENSO is roughly flat for the last two hundred years. Are my eyes fooling me?”

    Nope. Your eyes are just fine. The linear trends of the HADSST2- and HADISST-based NINO3.4 SST anomalies since 1900 are incredibly flat. Here’s a graph that runs through 2009:

    However, smoothing the data with a 121-month filter (same filter that NOAA uses to illustrate the AMO) shows the multidecadal variations:

  25. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 7, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    In some of the data around the peak/valley of 900-1000 BP, one can see some dry and wet data points that swamp all current maximum/minimums.
    I saved data from sets 34 & 35 (NW & NE Calif.) some years back. I’ll compare to see if any of the ‘data’ has been monkeyed with.

  26. “Leif Svalgaard says:
    May 7, 2011 at 1:26 pm
    kim says:
    May 7, 2011 at 12:21 pm
    Hook that beaut to the solar cycles. Ready, get set, we’ve gone?
    Except that that graph shows no correlation with anything solar.”

    It shows low El Nino intensity whilst solar activity was declining from MWP to LIA and higher El Nino intensity whilst solar activity was increasing from LIA to date.

    You are right that TSI cannot be the explanation but atmospheric chemistry in response to solar variations could well be.

  27. River sediment from the south west rivers such as the Sacramento River should then show some correlation with tree ring data.

  28. rbateman said:

    “In some of the data around the peak/valley of 900-1000 BP, one can see some dry and wet data points that swamp all current maximum/minimums.”

    Thanks, that is just what I would have expected if the MWP peak were higher than the recent warming peak.

    If the jets were well poleward (more than in the late 20th century) then California could well have spent periods of time under the subtropical high pressure cells and other periods of time under the tropical cyclone paths which would have shifted poleward too.

    If the jets were well equatorward such as during the LIA I would expect to see California instead dividing its time between the sub tropical high pressure cells and the mid latitude jets.

    California could be a neat bellweather showing two distinct types of climate regimes at the extremes of global warming and cooling.

    With global warming California becomes more tropical. With global cooling California becomes more temperate.

  29. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 7, 2011 at 1:57 pm
    It shows low El Nino intensity whilst solar activity was declining from MWP to LIA and higher El Nino intensity whilst solar activity was increasing from LIA to date.
    Except none of this is true. Solar activity was high around 1400, 1600 and 1780. E.g. slide 20 of http://www.leif.org/research/Does%20The%20Sun%20Vary%20Enough.pdf
    And where is the solar cycle in Bob’s graph: http://i43.tinypic.com/33agh3c.jpg

  30. Bob Tisdale says:
    May 7, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    Hello Bob,

    The multidecadal variations show a heavy dominance of El Nino over La Nina during the period 1900 to 2009.

    However the SST anomalies are flat.

    Thus I assume that averaged from 1900 to 2009 the size of the excess of El Nino over La Nina remained constant through the period.

    Would that be an accurate interpretation?

  31. recall that there are two issue with BCP.

    1. how much of the signal was temp versus precip?
    2. signal bias due to mechanical issues (strip bark)

    BCP should be avoided, unless those issues are addressed or resolved. Start by updating the proxies.

  32. Latitude:

    “And requires that you believe that one thousand trees got it wrong….
    …but eight, and only eight of them, got it right”

    There are two types of tree “complacent” and non complacent. Complacent trees have rings that dont vary a lot. they are not stressed, not at the limit. So its not a matter of some trees getting it right.

    before you condemn prior to investigation, do a bit of reading. the BEST critiques of a science are found Within the science.

    http://web.utk.edu/~grissino/principles.htm

    site selection is what you need to read

    http://web.utk.edu/~grissino/principles.htm#5

  33. Theo.

    “By contrast, neither Briffa nor other members of The Team have explained the famous “hidden decline” and, apparently, they long ago abandoned research on it.”

    That is false. they study of divergence is ACTIVE. see espers 2010 paper on the subject which directly addresses Briffa’s issue

  34. kim.

    “hooking” it to solar cycles. You need to suggest a mechanism. otherwise we will just end up with cycle mania.

  35. Ken Harvey says:
    May 7, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    “My point is that although we may have “experts” in the field of tree ring interpretation, I am not sure that we have any devotees who have spent much of their adulthood spare time growing bristle cone pines. If one has no intimate knowledge of the behavior of a plant in varying environments the ability to interpret must be considerably circumscribed.”

    Now that is science. In fact, it is downright experimental! To the best of my knowledge, such thoughts have never occurred to a member of The Team or anyone doing proxy reconstructions of temperature. (Of course, I realize that Bristle Cone Pines do not lend themselves so easily to experiment, but a much more intimate knowledge of them is possible.)

  36. for mosher:

    I think I’ve never heard so loud
    The quiet message in a cloud.
    =============

  37. I notice that they are now calling it the “Medieval Climate Anomaly” rather than “warm peroid”, we certainly do not want to associate the word ‘warm” with any period of time other than the present, now do we? People might get ideas…

    Second, it shows a general warming trend (in the eastern Pacific) that starts some 900 years ago, long before the invention of the SUV. Furthermore, it shows no spike upward at about 1950, as it would if CO2 were driving increasing warmth. Conclusion, CO2 is not resulting in increasing El Nino, the variations are natural. The question then is, exactly what IS driving it?

    Third, there are quite regular up and downs, and eyballing it, we are due for a down. Will the warmists blame the cold on CO2 as well, and what will they do if it gets cold enough everyone starts to notice? Will they say “my bad” and drop the whole CO2 thing, or will they do anything they can to hang on to power? Just how far are they willing to go with that?

  38. Li et al wrote: “The weakest El Niño activity happened during the Medieval Climate Anomaly in the 11th century, whereas the strongest activity has been since the 18th century.”

    Q#1: What is the origin of the phrase “Medieval Climate Anomaly”?
    Q#2: Why use the non-standard phrase “Medieval Climate Anomaly” instead of the more well-known “Medieval Warming Period”?
    Q#3: Why stop at year 1000?

  39. Fred says:
    “So you have had many posts pointing to the importance of ENSO for global mean temperatures, and now you are persuaded that bristlecone pines can give information about ENSO, but the idea that bristlecone pines might given information about global temperature is so outlandish that people looking into this are the worst scientists in the world? Just checking the logic here.”

    Fred, the correlation of BCP with ENSO in the last few decades of the instrumental record appears to be very good in the graph above. The correlation of BCP with global temp in the last few decades of the instrumental record diverges badly, they don’t know why, they still used the series, and they covered up the divergence in their famous graph. Why don’t you check that logic?

  40. Stephen Wilde says: “Thus I assume that averaged from 1900 to 2009 the size of the excess of El Nino over La Nina remained constant through the period.”

    Nope. Consider the smoothed NINO3.4 SST data again:

    Or consider the average NINO3.4 SST anomalies for two warming periods and the cooling period since 1910:

    And here are those period averages for NINO3.4 SST anomalies versus global SST anomalies:

    The last two graphs are from the post:

    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2010/11/17/multidecadal-changes-in-sea-surface-temperature/

  41. Fred at 10.18 am the point was made in the introductory comments that growth and hence differences in tree rings, is more influenced by the availability of water rather than change in temperature. Consequently tree rings are a better proxy for ENSO related change rather than for temperature change.

  42. kim says: “I think I’ve never heard so loud
    The quiet message in a cloud.”

    Bingo. It’s the inverse relationship between tropical Pacific cloud cover and Pacific trade wind strength during La Nina events that allow the sun to warm the waters that fuel the next El Nino. The periodic rise in central tropical Pacific Downward Shortwave Radiation during the La Nina events (as high as 45 watts/sq meter, if memory serves) can dwarf the variations caused by the solar cycle.

  43. Legatus says: “Will they say ‘my bad’ and drop the whole CO2 thing, or will they do anything they can to hang on to power?”

    They’ll simply blame it on the variatons in (warming vs cooling) aerosols.

  44. Leif @ 5:31

    In your link, I find cba @ 7:39 PM on 3/21/11 to be compelling. I think he suggests a way around the hypersensitivity.
    ================

  45. kim says:
    May 7, 2011 at 5:59 pm
    I find cba @ 7:39 PM on 3/21/11 to be compelling. I think he suggests a way around the hypersensitivity.
    I think his argument is circular: Changing the cloud cover would have a great effect on the climate, but a changing climate changes the cloud cover. The cosmic ray theory simply doesn’t work because the cosmic rays do not vary with the climate generally and BTW are themselves influenced by the climate [or rather the proxies for the cosmic rays].

  46. I hate to tell you guys but these people have no idea of what they are talking about. These peaks have nothing whatsoever to do with El Nino peaks which on the average are five years apart but may range from three to eight years due to variations in local conditions. The average distance between the peaks they show is about fifty or sixty years – ten times the spacing between ENSO peaks. But there is one phenomenon in the Pacific that supposedly does have a sixty year period, and that is the PDO (Pacific Decadal Oscillation). It is supposed to have warm phase and a cool phase, each thirty years, and the peaks they show are very likely the PDO and not ENSO. To me there was no convincing evidence up to now that such a thing as a PDO even existed but it looks like they’ve stumbled into away of proving that it does. Which brings into question the quality of that vaunted “peer review” system that allows such nonsense to be published. I have found that peer review is no longer true peer review I knew in the sixties but buddy review where journals actually encourage you to name the reviewer you would like to check out your own paper. Some of them will go so far as to demand that you name, for example, four reviewers, and if you don’t their software will not even let you complete your submission. That is the system that allowed the hockey stick to be published and now it brings us a completely misidentified trace of the PDO.

  47. The cosmic rays ARE affected by the magnetic field of the sun and the magnetic field of the earth . Both fields fluctuate.

  48. Fred says:
    May 7, 2011 at 10:18 am

    …but the idea that bristlecone pines might given information about global temperature is so outlandish that people looking into this are the worst scientists in the world? Just checking the logic here.

    Yes, Fred, you are indeed correct that the people looking into BCP rings as GMT proxies – that is, those who have been criticized by the “skeptics” around here so far – couldn’t possibly be the “worst scientists in the world”, simply because, methodologically, those people were not even doing real science to begin with. The basic problem has always been that the “Climate Scientists” alleged to the world that they were in fact doing real science, when they simply weren’t.

    Personally, yes, while BCP’s have been known to be good candidates as local precipitation proxies, I do think it’s ‘nuts’ to pursue the idea that wild BCP rings could yield a GMT signal [whatever on Earth a GMT is!] unless everything going on both above and below the ground in the case of each tree was known throughout their histories, in order to “zero” their ring data – in other words, except perhaps by pure chance with a very long confirmation testing period. But my above opinion is not science, either.

  49. David Ball says:
    May 7, 2011 at 8:00 pm
    The cosmic rays ARE affected by the magnetic field of the sun and the magnetic field of the earth . Both fields fluctuate.
    True, but the climate does not follow these fluctuations.

  50. So there goes any remnants of the proposal that El Nino is the driving force behind Global warming.

  51. Hah, that’s funny, Arno. I didn’t read the legends carefully, just looked at the curves, and thought it was the PDO cycles I was looking at.
    =============

  52. Mr. Eschenbach, “No, you’re not “checking the logic”. You’re just being a jerk, trying to sound precious and smart, and failing badly.”

    Whatever happened to your post about debating the science instead of engaging in personal attacks?

  53. Dear Bob and Leif,

    I am puzzled by both your responses to my earlier comments because you both seem to make the same ‘error’.

    I was careful to speak of averages over periods of time for both ENSO/PDO and solar data.

    However each of you then rebutted my points about the implications arising from such averages by saying that there are ‘anomalous’ spikes within the period concerned and that those spikes invalidate the implications to be drawn from the averaging even though they are taken into account in arriving at the averaged figures.

    Very odd.

  54. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 7, 2011 at 10:15 pm
    However each of you then rebutted my points about the implications arising from such averages by saying that there are ‘anomalous’ spikes within the period
    No, these were not ‘anomalous’, but quite normal for solar activity. Perhaps ‘anomalous’ if you have a preconceived fixation, otherwise not. If you want to take very long-term averages, such as: during the first 500 years both were low and during the last 500 years both were high [apart from even that being wrong], then the number of degrees of freedom is so low [like 'one'] that there is no statistical significance left.

  55. When A E Douglass founded dendrochronology he used it to track variations in precipitation on the West Coast of the USA over the last 2 millenium. He then went on to use it as a tool for dating ancient ruins in the nearby deserts. It is nice that this paper comes almost on the 100th anniversary of this early work to identify natural climate change during historical times…but it is a pity that I find no mention of this background in this press release (perhaps in the paper??).

    See an early dendrochronology paper by Douglass in 1909:

    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/1520-0493%281909%2937%5B225d:WCITGO%5D2.0.CO;2

    And see also these results published by Huntington from 1914:

    http://enthusiasmscepticismscience.wordpress.com/global-temperature-graphs/1914-huntington-tree-rings-precipitation-the-climatic-factor-as-illust-in-arid-america-p-153/

  56. Leif Svalgaard says:
    May 7, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    I meant ‘anomalous’ as compared to the averaged figure (PDO/ENSO) or as compared to the background trend (solar) not anomalous as compared to the normal range of solar activity.

    I didn’t actually average the level of solar activity. I merely pointed out that whilst the averaged level of El Nino was low for 500 years the level of solar activity was declining from the MWP to the LIA (Maunder Minimum) and that whilst the averaged level of El Nino was higher for the second period of 500 years the level of solar activity was increasing from Maunder Minimum (LIA) to date.

    The existence of various peaks and troughs in solar activity during each of those 500 year periods does not detract from the background trends.

    Furthermore your usual objections as to scale and proportion of solar changes do not apply because I am considering chemical effects and not radiative effects.

  57. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 7, 2011 at 10:59 pm
    I didn’t actually average the level of solar activity. I merely pointed out that whilst the averaged level of El Nino was low for 500 years the level of solar activity was declining from the MWP to the LIA (Maunder Minimum) and that whilst the averaged level of El Nino was higher for the second period of 500 years the level of solar activity was increasing from Maunder Minimum (LIA) to date.
    But that is not even the case. Solar activity in the 1780s was probably higher than in the latter part of the 20th century.

    Furthermore your usual objections as to scale and proportion of solar changes do not apply because I am considering chemical effects and not radiative effects.
    since what we get from the Sun is radiation and not chemicals, radiation is the relevant parameter.

  58. Another interpretation is that the trend line shows the rate of growth of a tree from infant to adult with the flattening-off occurring at full maturity. Variations around the trend show the environmental effects on growth. As we know that environmental changes affect growth, this is a graph of changes in weather but not necessarily of climate. There may be a climate signal in there but it should not be assumed that there is.

  59. The correlation of BCP with global temp in the last few decades of the instrumental record diverges badly, they don’t know why, they still used the series, and they covered up the divergence in their famous graph. Why don’t you check that logic?

    ######
    as Mc points out the BCP have not been updated in recent years. you are confusing yamal with BCP.

  60. Since El Niño causes climate extremes around the world

    I’ve been told that my use of electricity and gasoline causes climate extremes.

    Have we all been misled?

  61. Stephen Wilde says: “I am puzzled by both your responses to my earlier comments because you both seem to make the same ‘error’” And you continued, “I was careful to speak of averages over periods of time for both ENSO/PDO and solar data.”

    And I provided you with graphs of average NINO3.4 SST anomalies over specific periods. Here’s one again:

    And here’s the other again:

    You continued, “However each of you then rebutted my points about the implications arising from such averages by saying that there are ‘anomalous’ spikes within the period concerned and that those spikes invalidate the implications to be drawn from the averaging even though they are taken into account in arriving at the averaged figures.”

    Please document where on this thread I wrote of anomalous spikes. You wrote of averages and I provided you graphs of averages. I believe the ‘error’ is yours.

  62. Stephen Wilde: Let me add to my May 8, 2011 at 1:19 am reply. You wrote, “I was careful to speak of averages over periods of time for both ENSO/PDO…”

    You had not mentioned or implied the PDO until this comment.

  63. “nother interpretation is that the trend line shows the rate of growth of a tree from infant to adult with the flattening-off occurring at full maturity. Variations around the trend show the environmental effects on growth”

    not. tree rings are standardized to remove this effect. See CA.

  64. “The test will be when somebody asks for the data for replication purposes.”

    Shouldn’t “the data” and all other relevant information be released as a matter of corse?

  65. Arno Arrak says: “I hate to tell you guys but these people have no idea of what they are talking about. These peaks have nothing whatsoever to do with El Nino peaks which on the average are five years apart but may range from three to eight years due to variations in local conditions…” You then went on to discuss the frequency of the PDO.

    The text for the graph states, “PERIODS OF STRONG EL NINO ACTIVITY [my caps] are indicated by amplitudes above 1.0.” So the graph is not illustrating individual ENSO events. And if you refer to the Supplemental Materials for the paper…

    http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/v1/n2/extref/nclimate1086-s1.pdf

    …you will see that they’re also evaluating individual ENSO events.

    So, maybe we do know what we’re talking about.

  66. Bob Tisdale:

    I was talking about this one from you:

    Clearly the multidecadal shifts from your other graphs average out as virtually flat which implies that throughout the period the ‘excess’ of El Nino over La Nina was virtually constant.

    As regards ‘spikes’ the record is made up of peaks (spikes) and troughs.

  67. Leif Svalgaard says:
    May 7, 2011 at 11:14 pm
    “But that is not even the case. Solar activity in the 1780s was probably higher than in the latter part of the 20th century.”

    But not for so long so the averaged slope continued upward until the peak of cycle 23.

    “since what we get from the Sun is radiation and not chemicals, radiation is the relevant parameter.”

    What we get is a variable mix of wavelengths and particles which seem to have a variable effect on atmospheric chemistry. The chemistry then changes the radiative flux so for climate change purposes chemistry is the relevant parameter.

  68. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 8, 2011 at 2:24 am
    But not for so long so the averaged slope continued upward until the peak of cycle 23.
    No, as the sunspot number is overestimated since 1945.

    What we get is a variable mix of wavelengths and particles which seem to have a variable effect on atmospheric chemistry.
    The particles [unvarying chemistry] follow the radiation except deliver six orders of magnitude less energy, so radiation is the driver, if anything.

  69. Stephen Wilde replied, “I was talking about this one from you:
    http://i56.tinypic.com/2ag0u2u.jpg

    Why are you ignoring the others I provided which clearly contradict you? They’re from the same dataset, but they’re presented differently. The data smoothed with a 121-month running-AVERAGE filter…

    …clearly shows that “the size of the excess of El Nino over La Nina” does not remain “constant through the period.”

  70. “No, as the sunspot number is overestimated since 1945.”

    Enough to wipe out any further upward trend in the averaged slope since 1780? Due to all the ‘revisions’ of solar science that are going on you will need to forgive me if I keep an open mind.

    “The particles [unvarying chemistry] follow the radiation except deliver six orders of magnitude less energy, so radiation is the driver, if anything.”

    The delivery of energy is not the issue. The number of chemical reactions they cause is so it is particle numbers that matter not particle chemistry or energy levels. Furthermore the variations in UV and EUV appear to be a larger factor. We can agree that radiative physics does not account for the observations but it is looking very likely that chemical processes do.

  71. Hmmm, there’s something Belousov-Zhabotinskii about all this, not so much in the propagation of chemical reactions, but in the alternating albedo.

    Leif, I don’t see the circularity as lethal; a stable system may have circular excursions, and I still think a workaround for the hypersensitivity is suggested.

    Also, moshe, there may well be more mechanisms involved than I or anyone can imagine.
    ================

  72. OK, even I don’t know what ‘a stable system may have circular excursions’ means.
    Oh well there’s always haiku:

    Erl Happenstances,
    Behold the bright and fair child.
    Mysterious blonde.

    And my fave:

    The sun is very sultry and we must avoid its ultry-violet rays.

    H/t to Plum & NC.
    ======================

  73. People love simple answers. That is, people who aren’t looking for anything except a simple answer love simple answers.

  74. Bob Tisdale:

    I haven’t ignored your other graphs. I know that there are multidecadal swings between El Nino and La Nina but if one smooths the anomaly over the whole period as you did then the flat line shows that on average over the entire period the size of the anomaly in favour of El Nino has been the same.

    Perhaps it is my use of the word ‘constant’ that you found to be unclear. Obviously there is no constancy on the shorter timescale but constancy does seem to be present on the longer timescale hence the flat line.

  75. Stephen Wilde says: “I know that there are multidecadal swings between El Nino and La Nina but if one smooths the anomaly over the whole period as you did then the flat line shows that on average over the entire period the size of the anomaly in favour of El Nino has been the same.”

    If you are averaging over the whole term of the data, then the answer would depend on the period of your base years for anomalies. If your base years were the entire term of the data (from 1900 to present), then the average would be zero.

  76. Pascvaks says:
    May 8, 2011 at 7:24 am
    People love simple answers. That is, people who aren’t looking for anything except a simple answer love simple answers.
    Every complicated problem has a simple solution, that is wrong.

  77. Bob,

    The average anomaly is not zero because El Nino clearly dominates over La Nina.

    However the size of the anomaly does not change when averaged over the period:

    http://i56.tinypic.com/2ag0u2u.jpg”

    I consider this to be important because it shows that the cause of the 20th century warming of the troposphere is oceanic and the rate of change has not varied since at least 1900 which is before the proposed impact of human sourced CO2.

    So the next sep is to then ascertain why the 20th century El Nino dominance arose in the first place and at that point I would introduce my proposition that the level of solar activity had been increasing thereby shifting the jets to decrease cloudiness and albedo thereby providing more fuel for the 20th century bias in favour of El Nino.

    In fact I think the 20th century scenario is just an extension of what has been happening since the Maunder Minimum.

  78. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 8, 2011 at 10:39 am
    I would introduce my proposition that the level of solar activity had been increasing thereby shifting the jets to decrease cloudiness and albedo thereby providing more fuel for the 20th century bias in favour of El Nino.
    Figures 10 and 14 of http://www.leif.org/research/2009JA015069.pdf show that there has been no increase in solar activity the past 300 years.

  79. Leif,

    There have been changes in the mix of wavelengths and particles have there not?

    Also the assertion that there has been NO increase in solar activity the past 300 years seems somewhat surprising. Do you completely discount the apparently high activity levels of the late 20th century?

    Anyway you said:

    “Solar activity in the 1780s was probably higher than in the latter part of the 20th century.”

    That is only 230 years ago. Do you say there was no increase during the 70 years up to the 1780s?

    Is it your contention that by 1700 there was a full recovery from the Maunder Minimum with no further increase in solar activity since then?

  80. Stephen Wilde says: “The average anomaly is not zero because El Nino clearly dominates over La Nina.”

    Again, it depends on the base years.

    1950 to 1979 as base years:

    1900 to 2010 as base years:

  81. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 8, 2011 at 3:31 pm
    There have been changes in the mix of wavelengths and particles have there not?
    There are changes from day to day. Tiny and involving very little energy.

    Also the assertion that there has been NO increase in solar activity the past 300 years seems somewhat surprising. Do you completely discount the apparently high activity levels of the late 20th century?
    Educate yourself. Start by studying Figures 10 and 14 of http://www.leif.org/research/2009JA015069.pdf that show that there has been no increase in solar activity the past 300 years. Also read the last eight lines of paragraph [28]. Tell us what you get out of this.

  82. As a Californian, I’m pleased that the noble Bristlecone Pines in our Eastern mountains, and in other parts of the Basin and Range Region, are once again being used for legitimate scientific purposes.

  83. sceptical says:
    May 7, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    Mr. Eschenbach,

    “No, you’re not “checking the logic”. You’re just being a jerk, trying to sound precious and smart, and failing badly.”

    Whatever happened to your post about debating the science instead of engaging in personal attacks?

    If a man comes in trolling, he’s not interested in debating the science. I was pointing that out.

    w.

  84. See also CA: buell castles in the clouds, which references On the physical interpretation of Empirical Orthogonal Functions by C. Eugene Buell

    From a comment by Michael J:

    The doesn’t contain anything as poetic as “castles in the clouds”, but here’s the full paper on the problem as recognized in population genetics. Instead it uses phrases like “mathematical artifacts” and “providing a ‘null’ expectation against which observed PCs may be compared and contrasted”.

    From a comment by Steve McIntyre quoting on offline comment:

    Steve,

    Have a look at the literature on fluid dynamics.

    Turbulence, Coherent Structures, Dynamical Systems and Symmetry

    Holmes was a great teacher. … (some math omitted) … In other words the eigenfunctions for KL/PCA are determined by the symmetry properties of the system under decomposition.

    Other names similar if not identical techniques go by:

    Method of Snapshots (image processing, see sirovich particularly#32 on his publications list)

    Karhunen-Loeve

    I think Holmes and Lumley also discuss cutting off the decomposition usually at 90-95% of the variance for turbulence.

    Sorry I can’t give you better direction now because my copy is at the office.

  85. Like I said boys. Avoid the BCP

    funny to watch people exercise selective skepticism

    Wilde is the silliest of all.

    The results are Chladni patterns.

    ha. the sun predicts chladni patterns.

    thats rich.

    nostradamus strikes again

  86. Leif Svalgaard said:

    “Educate yourself. Start by studying Figures 10 and 14 of http://www.leif.org/research/2009JA015069.pdf that show that there has been no increase in solar activity the past 300 years. Also read the last eight lines of paragraph [28]. Tell us what you get out of this.”

    What I get out of the entire paper (and many others) is that the proper interpretation of many aspects of the effects of solar variability on the components of the Earth system is very much an ongoing and so far inconclusive work with many disagreements and discrepancies.

    In so far as there is some convergence occurring between the differing interpretations it is hard to tell whether that represents a real truth or just a wider sharing of similar initial assumptions.

    The trouble is that the closer you all get to discounting any significant solar variability the more troubling is the apparent discrepancy between that finding and observed events out in the real world. Those observations suggest to the rest of us that some hithero underappreciated component of solar variability has an effect on the Earth’s energy budget.

    So please forgive me for relegating all your work to an interesting but inconclusive set of solar data which appears to be largely off the target as regards solar involvement in climate.

  87. Bob Tisdale says:
    May 8, 2011 at 6:12 pm

    Ok, I can see that the size of the anomaly averaged over the whole period varies a bit depending on the base period.

    So my observation that the anomaly remains constant throughout the period was somewhat trite.

    However what I can draw from it is the absence of a negative anomaly whatever base period you select.

    Thus for the whole of the period from 1900 to 2010 the anomaly was positive to some degree or another depending on the base periods chosen and that provides a cause of troposheric warming over the period leaving the cause of that persistent positive anomaly open to debate.

    What would be most interesting would be to see whether the anomaly was ever negative for any significant period of time going back to the Maunder Minmum.

    Can your data help with that?

  88. steven mosher says:
    May 9, 2011 at 12:33 am
    Like I said boys. Avoid the BCP
    funny to watch people exercise selective skepticism
    Wilde is the silliest of all.

    That seems a bit harsh.

  89. Bob Tisdale:

    Of course you could produce a negative anomaly for portions of the 1900 to 2010 time period but as you know my interest is in the average net anomalies over long time periods such MWP to LIA and LIA to date.

  90. Tree rings are a laugh. They are sensitive to temperature like this:

    winter temps never go below freezing – tropical plants flourish (as they do in the south coast of the UK)

    winter temps go slightly below freezing – deciduous trees flourish (as they do in England)

    winter temps go a long way below freezing – coniferous trees flourish (as they do in Scotland and Germany and mountainous regions of the Southern Med as well as Scandinavia).

    I don’t see them being any more sensitive than that. Its just about whether they are adapted to cope with the water in their cells freezing and little more. After that its the rain and the sun that matters. Most plants in the UK grow like crazy in the Spring when its sunny and wet and the chlorophyll can work its wonders. Its not particularly warm though.

  91. steven mosher says:
    May 9, 2011 at 12:33 am

    Steve, I think you have misread my contribution here. I have no particular brief in favour of BCP data. I just took what was presented and pointed out a specific feature of the data supplied.

    Subsequently I have been engaged with Bob and Leif on separate (though related) issues because they are highly expert on solar and ENSO issues and if I am to develop my own (non BCP) ideas then I have to deal with their objections first.

    I am often wrong on specific points and have accepted corrections but I don’t think my general overview is wrong (so far).

    Is that ‘silly’ ?

  92. “Bob Tisdale says:
    May 9, 2011 at 1:53 am
    Just a note: Li et al 2011 is not the only ENSO reconstruction. It is, however, longer than Stahl et al (1998) and Mann et al (2000). Refer to the post:
    http://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2009/03/13/low-frequency-enso-oscillations/

    Thank you Bob. That is interesting.

    Li’s paper shows about 400 years of stronger El Nino since 1600 whereas Stahl and Mann show 350 years of weaker El Nino since about 1650.

    Any idea how to resolve that ?

    For AGW purposes Stahl and Mann’s decline would be preferred so as to minimise oceanic effects as the cause of tropospheric warming since the industrial revolution.

    If we go by Li’s reconstruction (whatever we think of BCP data) oceanic effects remain a prime candidate as the cause of the observed tropospheric warming.

  93. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 9, 2011 at 1:15 am
    What I get out of the entire paper (and many others) is that the proper interpretation of many aspects of the effects of solar variability on the components of the Earth system is very much an ongoing and so far inconclusive work with many disagreements and discrepancies.
    You are missing that that paper is not at all inconclusive and that there is in fact no longer any substantial disagreements for the time after 1700. This is major progress:

    JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 116, A04109, 12 PP., 2011
    doi:10.1029/2010JA016220
    Centennial changes in the heliospheric magnetic field and open solar flux: The consensus view from geomagnetic data and cosmogenic isotopes and its implications
    M. Lockwood & M. J. Owens
    Abstract: Svalgaard and Cliver (2010) recently reported a consensus between the various reconstructions of the heliospheric field over recent centuries. This is a significant development because, individually, each has uncertainties introduced by instrument calibration drifts, limited numbers of observatories, and the strength of the correlations employed. However, taken collectively, a consistent picture is emerging. We here show that this consensus extends to more data sets and methods than reported by Svalgaard and Cliver, including that used by Lockwood et al. (1999), when their algorithm is used to predict the heliospheric field rather than the open solar flux. One area where there is still some debate relates to the existence and meaning of a floor value to the heliospheric field. [...]

    The debate is concerned with the values before 1700. You cannot hide behind “the data is no good” anymore.

  94. wilde i have never seen a single testable quantified sentence come out of your keyboard.
    You are perhaps thee silliest of all.

    When I see a reconstruction.

    1. I look at the proxy.
    2. I look at the methodological issues (artifacts of method)
    3. I check the math.

    When you see a reconstruction, you first look to see if it supports your ideas or not.
    If it agree with your ideas you never question it. If it disagree with your ideas, you reject it out of hand.

    That is a FUNDAMENTAL different in approaches.

  95. On the contrary, mosher.

    I am constantly looking at new real world data to see if THAT matches my ideas and if that fails to do so then I take note and adjust as necessary.

    However I am sceptical of ALL aspects of models and reconstructions because they are consistently failing to account for ongoing real world climate developments or individual features of climate.

    Note too that I do not reject anything out of hand. I simply hold it in the back of my mind and subsequently compare it with new real world data when or if such relevant data arises.

    The silliness is to pay more attention to models and reconstructions than the real world data. Thus unless it acquires some predictive skill all your looking at the proxy, the method or the math is just building castles of sand and the silliest activity of all.

    For all the established methods the whole climate arena remains in flux lacking as it does a comprehensive overview into which all the disparate observed phenomena can be fitted.

    I have such an overview in course of construction but neither you nor I are in a position to provide precise quantifications or even yet decide on the correct sign of the interactions between the many components. I do not pretend to have much that is currently quantifiable or testable but I have set out certain types of climate event that could not happen under my ideas so there are opportunities to falsify my propositions.

    Even Joanna Haigh acknowledges that there are suspicions about the estabilshed consensus concerning the sign of the solar effect on the atmosphere or part of it.

    As regards real world data I consider anything pre the satellite era to be highly suspect and even the satellite data has problems.

    I do realise that my approach is frustrating to the many expert scientists who post here and who generally only comment when they have quantifiable evidence of their contentions. However that is not how the AGW camp has been operating. They are running the whole scenario on unquantified unsubstantiated assertions and whilst climate science remains so immature they can only be tackled by providing an equally plausible opposing narrative and if that has to be unquantifioed and untestable for the time being then so be it.

    So I am running a different game plan to that of you and many others here but the knowledge I gain here is very helpful in determining what sort of anti AGW narrative would be scientifically plausible on the basis of current observations.

  96. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 9, 2011 at 11:10 am
    I do realise that my approach is frustrating to the many expert scientists who post here and who generally only comment when they have quantifiable evidence of their contentions. However that is not how the AGW camp has been operating. They are running the whole scenario on unquantified unsubstantiated assertions

    And you think that emulating them is a good idea…

  97. I go further than emulating them because they don’t try to account for new climate data. They just stick with the CO2 mantra while the observations diverge from expectations.

    What is needed is a general conceptual overview that fits as many observations as possible so that the relationship between components of the system can become clearer.

    For example long before the recent solar minimum ‘coincided’ with a record negative AO I had envisaged a solar effect on the characteristics of the polar air masses.

    I also told you some time ago that if we were to see a highly positive AO at a time of a weak sun AND negative oceans then my proposition could be falsified. That shows no sign of happening.

    I am waiting to see whether any climate events occur that really do falsify my overview.

    Note that a lot of climate events have occurred since the late 90s which could only occur together if there were a link between them and it is not silly to try and construct a plausible overview. For new readers some of those events are as follows:

    The sun started to weaken on the way down from the peak of cycle 23.

    PDO turned negative likely to be followed by other ocean basins.

    Tropospheric warming stopped or slowed.

    The jets turned more meridional/equatorward.

    The stratosphere stopped cooling as did the mesosphere.

    Ozone above 45km started to increase with a fall below 45km

    Cloudiness and albedo started to increase after a long period of falling.

    The AO turned negative with a recent record.

    Warmer air more often advected poleward and colder outbreaks in mid latitudes as compared with the late 20th century.

    None of that fits readily with the consensus AGW theory but I have constructed a plausible scenario linking it all together.

    Perhaps you and Mosh could now come up with an improvement ?

  98. Oh, and by some accounts:

    Ocean heat content stopped rising in 2003.

    CO2 in the air doesn’t seem to be increasing so quickly.

    Sea level rises seem to be slowing down.

    Over to you.

  99. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 9, 2011 at 12:14 pm
    None of that fits readily with the consensus AGW theory but I have constructed a plausible scenario linking it all together.
    Not at all. For example you require solar activity to have risen substantially over the past 300 years and the current thinking [which you dismiss out of hand] is that it didn’t. Your scenario is hand waving, no numbers, no quantification, no science.

  100. I require only that some component or components of solar variability have an effect on ozone quantities above 45km.

    In fact it is not me who requires that. The Earth system itself requires that in order for the real world observations to arise.

    Have you an alternative mechanism for the changes that we have seen recently and which I listed ?

    If you contend that it is ALL internal variability please supply a plausible narrative on that basis.

    Essentially the precise mix of solar wavelengths and particles has a bearing on the net balance between ozone creation and destruction above 45km and over a period of time there is an effect on the vertical temperature profile of the atmosphere sufficient to contribute to climate changes on the scale of MWP to LIA to date.

    I have considered the option of trying to cover all the phenomena without a solar component (as you kindly suggested some time ago) but I cannot get it to work on that basis. There has to be a top down solar effect of some sort.

    http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/5/3/034008/fulltext

    The science has been supplied by others and I have linked to it frequently but Mosher seems not to have noticed. I have merely superimposed a plausible narrative.

  101. Wilde,

    Nothing you say is quantifiable. you never make any quantifiable claim. In the world that Lief and I travel in, you’ve said virtually nothing.

    #####
    1. Ocean heat content stopped rising in 2003.
    This says nothing about the physics of GHGs. GHGs warm the planet. That does noy imply a linear warming or a constant increase. The climate exhibits what we call
    unforced changes, or natural variability. cyclical ups and down. added c02, for example, imposes an ADDITIONAL warming on top of these cycles. So, without C02 you might see a cycle that dips by .6C. ( for example only) with c02 this dip doesnt disappear. It gets attentuated, say to .4C. Likewise with natural spikes. That is why you can adduce NOTHING from short time frames

    CO2 in the air doesn’t seem to be increasing so quickly.

    immaterial to the physics of warming

    Sea level rises seem to be slowing down.

    again, youve said nothing of scientific interest

  102. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 9, 2011 at 2:01 pm
    I have considered the option of trying to cover all the phenomena without a solar component (as you kindly suggested some time ago) but I cannot get it to work on that basis. There has to be a top down solar effect of some sort.
    That you can’t get it ‘to work’, i.e. fit into your scheme, does not imply that ‘there has to be a top down solar effect of some sort’. Perhaps your scheme is simply not good enough… You are in good company, if so.

  103. Figures 10 and 14 of http://www.leif.org/research/2009JA015069.pdf show that there has been no increase in solar activity the past 300 years.

    Fig 10 shows the 172 year powerwave that directs overall solar output. The 300 year time frame is misleading and neglects to pick up any of the major grand minima that were prevalent before 1700. There is a ceiling for cycle output that is probably around the levels of SC19 which occurs at the peak of the 172 year wave, so one can only expect small fluctuations in solar modulation from the trough to the peak. BUT what is not being considered is the impact of grand minima. The depth and length of these periods (that incl cycles like SC20) determine the overall strength of solar influence as seen in the isotope records over the Holocene.

    Prolonged periods of low EUV activity as witnessed during grand minima determine the chemical reactions that Stephen is discussing that many are starting to think have a bearing on world climate.

  104. “That you can’t get it ‘to work’, i.e. fit into your scheme, does not imply that ‘there has to be a top down solar effect of some sort’. Perhaps your scheme is simply not good enough… You are in good company, if so.”

    Leif, that Lockwood paper I just linked you to effectively demolishes all your protestations in this thread abot the inability of small solar changes to affect surface pressure distribution.

    I am in good company on the point and you are now the outlier.

    Furthermore I was proposing just such an effect BEFORE the publication of the Lockwood paper and BEFORE joanna Haigh’s comments about the possibility of a reverse sign effect from solar input to the atmosphere.

  105. steven mosher says:
    May 9, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Thank you Mosh. You just blew your own credibility out of the water.

    You have obviously read little or nothing of my description as to how the component phenomena link together.

    You are my silliest reader of all so far.

    All of my climate description is based on real world observations, is internally consistent, complies with basic physics and the science that I have provided links to is provided by a plethora of respectable scientists. If you dismiss what I say then you dismiss all their findings too.

    Feel free to comment further when you have actually done some basic reading.

  106. More support for my approach:

    http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/arxiv/pdf/1102/1102.4763v1.pdf

    There appears to be a variation of 26.6% in the Schumann-Runge bands which

    “is important for heating processes in the middle atmosphere.”

    which is highly significant from my point of view because I contend (as per Joanna Haigh’s report) that the solar effect on ozone quantities in the atmsphere reverses at or around 45km i.e. approximately at the stratopause.

  107. Stephen Wilde says:
    May 10, 2011 at 5:49 am
    More support for my approach
    Yes, we know already that anything whatsoever is taken by you as support for your approach… I have never seen you point to something that was not in support of your approach.

  108. Well, if everything supports his approach he must be right then. I have the opposite problem; nothing supports my approach.
    =================

  109. Hey, Moshe, the oceanic oscillations are Chladni patterns, and maybe tectonic movement is too.
    ===========

  110. kim says:
    May 10, 2011 at 7:12 am
    Well, if everything supports his approach he must be right then.
    That is what he thinks and is called confirmation bias.

  111. Well I constructed the approach from what was being observed so what is being observed would support my approach wouldn’t it ?

    No huge skill in that, I’m surprised no one else has tried it.

    So now I just need to watch out for new observations (not models or reconstructions) that don’t fit.

    In the meantime papers are coming out which show that proper scientists have in fact been working along the same lines but while they have been doing so I made a few intuitive leaps.

    Still, something could come up tomorrow that throws it all into the melting pot again.

  112. There theory of increased precipitation in Bristlecone zones for ENSO+ is valid during PDO+.

    However, when PDO- they also receive increased precipitation when ENSO- .

    PDO- will mean increased precipitation in general for areas where the Bristlecones grow.

    In fact, the White Mountains just received a fresh coating of snow yesterday.

Comments are closed.