UV low during recent solar minimum

From the American Geophysical Union:

Ultraviolet solar irradiance was low during recent solar minimum

http://www.agu.org/journals/jd/jd1116/2010JD014746/2010jd014746-op01-tn-350x.jpg

Solar irradiance, which varies with the 11-year solar cycle and on longer time scales, can affect temperature and winds in the atmosphere, influencing Earth’s climate. As the Sun currently wakes up from a period of low sunspot activity, researchers want to know how irradiance during the recent solar minimum compares to historical levels. In addition to understanding the total received power, it is important to know how various spectral bands behave, in particular the ultraviolet, which causes heating and winds in the stratosphere.

Lockwood analyzes solar ultraviolet spectral irradiance data from May 2003 to August 2005 from both the Solar Ultraviolet Spectral Irradiance Monitor (SUSIM) instrument on board the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) and the Solar Stellar Irradiance Comparison Experiment (SOLSTICE) instrument on the Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) satellite. Using several different methods to intercalibrate the data, he develops a data composite that can be used to determine differences between the recent solar minimum and previous minima. He finds that solar irradiance during the recent sunspot minimum has been especially low.

Source: Journal of Geophysical Research-Atmospheres, doi:10.1029/2010JD014746, 2011 http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2010JD014746

Title: Was UV spectral solar irradiance lower during the recent low sunspot minimum?

Authors: Mike Lockwood: Space Environment Physics Group, Department of Meteorology, University of Reading, Reading, Berkshire, UK; and Space Science and Technology Department, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Didcot, Oxfordshire, UK.

Abstract:

A detailed analysis is presented of solar UV spectral irradiance for the period between May 2003 and August 2005, when data are available from both the Solar Ultraviolet Spectral Irradiance Monitor (SUSIM) instrument (on board the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) spacecraft) and the Solar Stellar Irradiance Comparison Experiment (SOLSTICE) instrument (on board the Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) satellite). The ultimate aim is to develop a data composite that can be used to accurately determine any differences between the “exceptional” solar minimum at the end of solar cycle 23 and the previous minimum at the end of solar cycle 22 without having to rely on proxy data to set the long-term change. SUSIM data are studied because they are the only data available in the “SOLSTICE gap” between the end of available UARS SOLSTICE data and the start of the SORCE data. At any one wavelength the two data sets are considered too dissimilar to be combined into a meaningful composite if any one of three correlations does not exceed a threshold of 0.8. This criterion removes all wavelengths except those in a small range between 156 nm and 208 nm, the longer wavelengths of which influence ozone production and heating in the lower stratosphere. Eight different methods are employed to intercalibrate the two data sequences. All methods give smaller changes between the minima than are seen when the data are not adjusted; however, correcting the SUSIM data to allow for an exponentially decaying offset drift gives a composite that is largely consistent with the unadjusted data from the SOLSTICE instruments on both UARS and SORCE and in which the recent minimum is consistently lower in the wave band studied.

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53 Responses to UV low during recent solar minimum

  1. RockyRoad says:

    UV, which is properly identified as a source of heat, can vary by as much as 6%. That’s huge compared to the variation in visible irradiance observed over the (typical) 11-year solar cycle.

  2. Interstellar Bill says:

    This mere data can’t be right, cuz we all ‘know’ that CO2 is the sole driver of climate change, and the this and our other satanic gasses will doom us unless Govt takes over everybody’s lives.
    Data, go away!

  3. Mac the Knife says:

    Looks like the full paper is behind a ‘pay wall”…$25. The 10 figures associated with the paper are accessible at the link provided above, however.

  4. Jeremy says:

    That Y axis, Watts per square meter, per nanometer (wavelength?)… It’s not not clear to me what those units actually tell us. Are they measuring the average drop in watts per nanometer of UV spectrum over a square meter?

  5. John Day says:

    > Title: Was UV spectral solar irradiance lower
    > during the recent low sunspot minimum?

    Lower than what? The previous minimum? If so, how much lower?

    If you’re comparing to the previous maximum, then it should be no surprise that UV irradiance sinks proportionately lower during minima (more than TSI) because UV is associated with sunspot activity. (Look at the SDO EUV imagery. Guess what the bright spots are. EUV!). During minima there are fewer sunspots so UV goes down. Whereas TSI remains more ‘constant’ be cause the overall output doesn’t vary as much. No surprise there.

    Also, look at the different offsets of the 4 instruments above. This has to be a calibration issue because they contradict each other at the overlaps. Greg Kopp indicates on his web page (http://spot.colorado.edu/~koppg/TSI/) that this long standing offset issue has been resolved, resulting in a lowering of the recalibrated TSI from 1366 to 1361 watts/m² normalized for 1AU at the top of the atmosphere:

    http://europa.agu.org/?view=article&uri=/journals/gl/gl1101/2010GL045777/2010GL045777.xml&t=gl,2011,kopp

    So I’m wondering if this ‘lower UV’ above isn’t somehow related to this recalibration, which means it really didn’t get lower but was readjusted for reality.

  6. Tim Ball says:

    In the original claim that ozone decrease, especially over Antarctica, was due to CFCs they assumed the solar constant, including an unvarying UV portion of the spectrum. SInce UV creates ozone through the process of photodisassociation when it strikes oxygen in the atmosphere, the major mechanism that causes ozone variation was omitted. If you transfix the major cause of variation then an alternative explanation, usually a human one, is transcendent. The deception worked because few people are aware of the science. It is similarly true of climate science where the role of the Sun is effectively ignored.

    How much did the ozone vary in this brief study, which tacitly acknowledges the error of the previous science?

  7. timetochooseagain says:

    SOLSTICE Gap, eh? Kinda like the ACRIM gap, then?

  8. Mike Wryley says:

    Tim Ball,
    What, you mean all those expensive freon replacements, which obsoleted perfectly good and inexpensive hardware, and the requirements for evermore complex and fragile systems to handle
    less efficient working fluids (some of which have working high head pressures nearing 500 psi)
    have all been predicated on a scam ?..
    DuPont probably makes a lot of campaign contributions

  9. I’ve been seeing the data from the SORCE satellite for a while now.

    Everyone had been saying the the TSI wasn’t changing, yet data shows that parts of the spectrum (including UV) varies wildly, even at minimum activity.

    That’s why I’ve been trying to get input about a story I noticed LAST YEAR (12.17.10):

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/solarsystem/features/solarcycle-sorce.html

    In which the statement was made:

    “…Some of the variations that SIM [Solar Irradiance Monitor] has measured in the last few years do not mesh with what most scientists expected. Climatologists have generally thought that the various part of the spectrum would vary in lockstep with changes in total solar irradiance.

    However, SIM suggests that ultraviolet irradiance fell far more than expected between 2004 and 2007 — by ten times as much as the total irradiance did — while irradiance in certain visible and infrared wavelengths surprisingly increased, even as solar activity wound down overall.

    The steep decrease in the ultraviolet, coupled with the increase in the visible and infrared, does even out to about the same total irradiance change as measured by the TIM during that period, according to the SIM measurements…”

    Notice it said that UV decreased, and IR increased.

    Nice to see a peer reviewed paper finally picking up on it.

    PS, for those that want to see the original data, it’s here:

    http://lasp.colorado.edu/sorce/data/ssi_data.htm

  10. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    Now waiting for Leif Svalgaard, Solar Astrophysicist Extraordinaire to swoop in, explain how this means virtually nothing important (per his own graphs), and all discussion will devolve to three or so regulars who will always argue with Leif, eventually about the same things as always, for the next three weeks at this same post as expected, even if another solar-related post pops up (they can all argue the same things on multiple posts at once).

    Starting countdown: 4, 3, 2….

  11. rbateman says:

    What was that quip from Einstein about the wavelenght of light and energy?
    Since the energy increases as the wavelength shortens, in order to get a zero W/M^2, the Infrared would have to increase a lot more than the UV decreased. Right?

    Thought this might come up, so here are some color composite SOHO images for each year on Nov 11/12 from 1996 to today( 09/19/11):
    http://www.robertb.darkhorizons.org/EITNov1996_Nov2009.JPG
    seeing that the AR’s on the EIT’s are a relevant subject matter.

  12. Brad Kurtz says:

    Leif actually might agree on this, although he does correctly believe we have a real issue of instrument decay on these satellites (as noted in the paper) because GLORY should be measuring this by now and instead is sitting on the bottom of the ocean.

    This is as big as clouds or anything else if the low UV heating continues if we enter a true solar minima.

  13. There are actually 3 elements at play when the sun goes quiet.
    1. The sun’s magnetic field weakens that allow greater penetration of high energy galactic cosmic ray into the inner solar system that results in greater cloud formation over the oceans.
    2. The decrease in UV radiation emitted from the sun which slows down ozone production in the stratopause and upper stratosphere. (decrease of natural ozone)
    3. The absence of major solar storms that destroy the ozone layer in the region above the stratopause. (increase of the recovery of natural ozone)

  14. Brad Kurtz says:

    James-
    Agree based on our current understanding, but our current understanding also still hinges on a rather invariate sun, which may be a very naive assumption

  15. kim says:

    Free Freon.
    ========

  16. Will says:

    The UV portion of incoming electromagnetic energy is minute compared to the IR portion of incoming.

    Where UV interacts most with oxygen in the atmosphere, at the top of the tropopause, producing maximum ozone, (the ozone layer) there is no observable heating.

    Yet incoming IR, 50% of solar radiation, is ignored. Except when the fact inadvertently slips out.

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=huge-defunct-satellite

    “NASA spokeswoman Beth Dickey confirmed with SPACE.com earlier today that the reason UARS is expected to fall early in its re-entry window is because of the sharp uptick in solar activity. Solar effects from the sun can create an extra drag on satellites in space because they can heat the Earth’s atmosphere, causing it to expand, agency officials have said.”

  17. Pingo says:

    This explains the height rises over Greenland which caused the baltic UK winters..

  18. Stephen Wilde says:

    “However, SIM suggests that ultraviolet irradiance fell far more than expected between 2004 and 2007″

    and:

    “The absence of major solar storms that destroy the ozone layer in the region above the stratopause. (increase of the recovery of natural ozone).”

    Note that Joanna Haigh noted that from 2004 to 2007 ozone quantities rose in the region above 45km despite the quiet sun.

    That would imply a natural warming above 45km when the sun is inactive and presumably a natural cooling above 45km when the sun is more active just as was observed in the late 20th century.

    I see it as likely that the temperature of the stratosphere would follow the temperature of the mesosphere because the temperature of the mesosphere would affect the flow of energy from the stratosphere.

    Thus the assumption that CO2 caused or contributed to the cooling stratosphere may well be false.

    The temperature of the stratosphere affects the height of the tropopause which in turn affects the surface air pressure distribution and through that the speed of the water cycle and the speed of energy flow from surface to space.

    More detail here:

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=6645

    “How The Sun Could Control Earth’s Temperature”.

    As far as I know all proposals other than mine involve a warmer stratosphere when the sun is active and a cooler stratosphere when it is inactive.

  19. A couple of decades ago, we analytical chemists found many difficulties with accurate spectroscopy in the ultra violet in the controlled conditions of the laboratory, even when shining UV light through precise cells of known wall properties and dimensions. Shift the lab into the sky and insert a complex, time-variant atmosphere between source and detector and you have really tough problems. I’ve blogged before about dangers in assuming that satellite radiation measurements are not clipped or attenuated at the ends of their ranges; and how one cannot assume that UV is in lockstep with total radiation; and how UV reacts with earthly components like plants and oceans in ways quite different to IR. The science badly needs more spectroscopic resolution with satellite top-of-atmosphere devices. Guessing is so, so unreliable and unscientific.
    However, I was comforted by the prescience of Al Gore, who wrote about the increase of solar UV hitting Patagonia, in his 1992 “Earth in the Balance” book. He documented that the UV light was causing blindness in rabbits and that fishermen were catching blind salmon (p. 85 in paperback). From these observations, ahead of their time, we can place a great deal of confidence on Al Gore’s other predictions, which are not only major, but so comprehensive that they can explain almost everything.

  20. Stephen Wilde says:

    James Marusek mentioned:

    “The decrease in UV radiation emitted from the sun which slows down ozone production in the stratopause and upper stratosphere. (decrease of natural ozone) and

    The absence of major solar storms that destroy the ozone layer in the region above the stratopause. (increase of the recovery of natural ozone).”

    On the basis of observations I think it will be found that the latter in affecting the mesosphere outweighs the former effect in the stratosphere so as to reverse the sign of the generally assumed solar effect on both stratosphere and mesosphere.

    Thus both cool when the sun is active and warm when it is inactive.

    If that proves to be so then not only is it relevant to climate changes but also it potentially invalidates the CFC proposition about human destruction of ozone.

  21. Stephen Wilde says:

    henrythethird says:
    September 20, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    “I’ve been seeing the data from the SORCE satellite for a while now.
    Notice it said that UV decreased, and IR increased”

    That is something I would expect to see if the sign of the solar response in the stratosphere and mesosphere were to be reversed from that expected by standard climatology.

    UV reduction might result in less ozone and so cooling of the stratosphere but could that be more than offset by more IR entering the stratosphere from the sun?

    So we have two potential causes for a warming stratosphere when the sun is less active:

    i) More solar IR affecting the stratosphere. This process is supported by the SORCE data, and/or

    ii) Less ozone destruction and thus ozone recovery in the mesosphere with associated warming when the sun is less active. This is the option supported by Joanna Haigh’s ozone data.

  22. John Marshall says:

    The sun is nothing if not a variable star. Small variations but enough to affect climate.

  23. cal says:

    This paper is focused on the UVc wavelengths which are largely absorbed by Ozone in the stratosphere. By inference the UVb wavelengths which cause the skin to go brown have also been at historic lows. This may be significant since these wavelengths are absorbed at depths of up to 100 metres in the oceans. This is important since red and infrared radiation from the sun and downward radiation from the atmosphere are absorbed within a few centimetres of the surface. This latter radiation forms the bulk of the energy absorbed by the oceans but because it is absorbed close to the surface it leads to evaporation or warming and re-radiation which quickly increases the energy loss until a balance is reached. So a change in the sun’s emissions at these wavelengths will lead to surface warming but little energy accumulation. Conversely the shorter wavelengths will be asborbed at depths that will lead to little or no change in the surface emissions and therefore energy accumulation will occur. Although it looks as though Svenmark’s cloud theory could well be true variation in solar UV may also contribute to long term warming and cooling of the deep oceans and then,through the natural cycles like ENSO, to subsequent release into the atmosphere to allow for eventual release to space.

  24. meemoe_uk says:

    From the abstract :
    “All methods give smaller changes between the minima than are seen when the data are not adjusted; however, correcting the SUSIM data to allow for an exponentially decaying offset drift gives a composite that is largely consistent with the unadjusted data from the SOLSTICE instruments”

    When was the last science experiment done where the data wasn’t adjusted? 1855?

  25. tallbloke says:

    kim says:
    September 20, 2011 at 10:39 pm

    Free Freon.
    ========

    And give Halon back its Halo

  26. John says:

    Joanna Haigh published articles about 10 years ago regarding possible consequences of the larger reduction in UV rays when the sun is relatively quiet. Back then, she reported that a 0.1 to 0.2% decrease in total solar irradiance when the sun is quiet would also produce about a 6 to 7% decrease in UV at certain wavelengths.

    Her research suggested that the decrease in ozone production in the stratosphere would lead to cooling in the stratosphere (ozone is a greenhouse gas). In turn, this cooling would change atmospheric weather patterns and produce cooling on average on earth’s surface. My memory isn’t what it used to be, but I think one mechanism was that the polar jet streams would migrate a bit away from the poles. Her theory was put forward as a possible mechanism by which a cooler sun — say, in the Little Ice Age — would cause the earth to cool.

    I don’t know the current state of acceptance of Haigh’s work, but it is out there and worthy of being part of this conversation. It isn’t necessarily a direct competitor to Svensmark’s theories, I don’t see why both couldn’t work in synchrony. But both of them need to be more fully understood, it seems to me.

  27. Paul Vaughan says:

    Quite a moment. Could we be witnessing the very early stages of a painfully slow development of awareness of Simpson’s Paradox?

  28. Carla says:

    Didn’t Dr. S. tell us that fewer BRIGHT sunspots and more DARK coronal hole regions would account for this lower UV?
    Leif I did read the Semi annual variation deal, seems you forgot something.. like an inflow coming from the heliospheres nose direction during equinox. But I can see that you are hard at it, trying to get it right.
    ~~
    rbateman says:
    September 20, 2011 at 8:42 pm
    ..Thought this might come up, so here are some color composite SOHO images for each year on Nov 11/12 from 1996 to today( 09/19/11):
    http://www.robertb.darkhorizons.org/EITNov1996_Nov2009.JPG
    seeing that the AR’s on the EIT’s are a relevant subject matter.
    ~~
    Thanks Rob. Sun might just appear a bit darker in some of those pics.

  29. John Day says:

    @John
    > Joanna Haigh published articles about 10 years ago
    > regarding possible consequences of the larger
    > reduction in UV rays when the sun is relatively quiet.
    > …
    > I don’t know the current state of acceptance of Haigh’s work,
    > but it is out there and worthy of being part of this conversation.

    Here’s her latest paper on that topic, dated Oct 2010.
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v467/n7316/full/nature09426.html
    Abstract: “The thermal structure and composition of the atmosphere is determined fundamentally by the incoming solar irradiance. Radiation at ultraviolet wavelengths dissociates atmospheric molecules, initiating chains of chemical reactions—specifically those producing stratospheric ozone—and providing the major source of heating for the middle atmosphere, while radiation at visible and near-infrared wavelengths mainly reaches and warms the lower atmosphere and the Earth’s surface1. Thus the spectral composition of solar radiation is crucial in determining atmospheric structure, as well as surface temperature, and it follows that the response of the atmosphere to variations in solar irradiance depends on the spectrum2. Daily measurements of the solar spectrum between 0.2 µm and 2.4 µm, made by the Spectral Irradiance Monitor (SIM) instrument on the Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) satellite3 since April 2004, have revealed4 that over this declining phase of the solar cycle there was a four to six times larger decline in ultraviolet than would have been predicted on the basis of our previous understanding. This reduction was partially compensated in the total solar output by an increase in radiation at visible wavelengths. Here we show that these spectral changes appear to have led to a significant decline from 2004 to 2007 in stratospheric ozone below an altitude of 45 km, with an increase above this altitude. Our results, simulated with a radiative-photochemical model, are consistent with contemporaneous measurements of ozone from the Aura-MLS satellite, although the short time period makes precise attribution to solar effects difficult. We also show, using the SIM data, that solar radiative forcing of surface climate is out of phase with solar activity. Currently there is insufficient observational evidence to validate the spectral variations observed by SIM, or to fully characterize other solar cycles, but our findings raise the possibility that the effects of solar variability on temperature throughout the atmosphere may be contrary to current expectations.”

    The full paper is behind a $32 paywall, but some supplemental information describing the data used for her models (two-dimensional) is free:
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v467/n7316/extref/nature09426-s1.pdf

  30. Paul Vaughan says:

    @kadaka (KD Knoebel) [September 20, 2011 at 7:52 pm]

    True – and unfortunately it waters threads down to less than a needle-in-a-haystack.

    Redundancy & squabbling are intolerable killers of precious time.

    With no policy limiting the “lifetime” of fundamental disagreements to sensible duration (max 3 back-&-forths), sensible readers are left with no alternative but to automatically skip the floods of consequently interminable watering-down.

    It only takes 1 hyperactive commenter to downgrade a forum.

  31. Dr. Lurtz says:

    Ignore Sunspots, Ignore UV.

    Energy flows downhill [in frequency]. Just use the 10.7cm Flux. That is the energy reaching the Earth. It has a base of 65 units and a “maximum” of about 280 units. We are averaging 80 to 90 units. 10% of normal for this time in the Solar Cycle.

    The cold comes…

  32. Ralph says:

    >>As the Sun currently wakes up from a period of low sunspot activity….

    Wakes up?? It looks to me that the SS has already reached peak and is about to turn downwards again.

    .

  33. Stephen Wilde says:

    ” but our findings raise the possibility that the effects of solar variability on temperature throughout the atmosphere may be contrary to current expectations.”

    Exactly. We need an answer to that because it could potentially overturn established climatology as to the sign of the solar effect on the stratosphere.

    In my opinion only a cooling stratosphere with an active sun and a warming stratosphere with an inactive sun could produce the observed changes in the atmosphere.

    The established climatology is precisely the opposite and I have the only hypothesis which acommodates the reversed sign scenario.

  34. John Day says:

    Dr. Lurtz says:
    September 21, 2011 at 7:05 am

    Ignore Sunspots, Ignore UV.

    Energy flows downhill [in frequency]. Just use the 10.7cm Flux. That is the energy reaching the Earth. It has a base of 65 units and a “maximum” of about 280 units. We are averaging 80 to 90 units. 10% of normal for this time in the Solar Cycle.

    The cold comes…
    Ralph says:
    September 21, 2011 at 7:09 am

    >>As the Sun currently wakes up from a period of low sunspot activity….

    Wakes up?? It looks to me that the SS has already reached peak and is about to turn downwards again.

    You guys need to recheck your facts:
    >… 10.7cm Flux.That is the energy reaching the Earth
    Of the 1361 watts per m^2 that hits the top of the atmosphere, the 10.7cm (microwave RF) contribution is probably on the order of a few microvolts. At least the X-Ray flux gets up into the milliwatts per m^2 occasionally

    > … We are averaging 80 to 90 units. 10% of normal for this time in the Solar Cycle.
    So SFI of 800 to 800 is “normal”? Which star are we talking about?

    > … SS has already reached peak and is about to turn downwards …
    No way. The SFI is just in the middle of its second crescendo (the first occurred in Feb 2011), with SFI currently hitting > 145 and higher. There will be several more of these over the next few years before Cycle 24 is over.

  35. John says:

    Thank you, John Day. Two quick reactions. First, J Haigh’s latest certainly seems to show that more work needs to be done on the issue of effects not just of UV, but of all the wavelengths. Secondly, I would very much like to know the effects of the changes in stratospheric ozone which she finds on weather at the surface. Her earlier work got into such effects. The Abstract you provide does not. Do you know more about the findings of this article, or are you on only this side of the paywall?

  36. rbateman says:

    Ralph says:
    September 21, 2011 at 7:09 am

    I agree: The Sun appears to have peaked in activity around February of 2011. The spots and AR’s, while more numerous now, are smaller and weaker.

  37. Tim Ball says:

    MIke Wryley wryly comments on the cost of the CFC issue. Years ago I was ordered to appear before the Canadian Parliamentary Committee investigating the ozone issue. It was a classic political charade typical of all environmental hearings I’ve seen or been involved in. There were more people representing Friends of the Earth than scientists who had studied the problem. Of the scientists, one had produced computer models of levels of ozone over parts of Canada and presented them as real data. I know from asking that the politicians thought it was real data. At that time there were only two stations covering Canada and they were foolishly used to give ozone level readings for the entire country. This despite the fact that it was known that levels varied by the hour as weather changed.

    Dupont had representatives but did not speak to the real science or protest about the misleading information being presented. I realized afterward that they already had the more problematic and expensive replacement ready to go to market. They stood to make even more money.

    I realized the politicians did not understand the scientific method of presenting an hypothesis and then trying to disprove it. I explained it to them by giving an example of how a scientist can speculate on all kinds of impending threats using facts. I told them the Earth’s magnetic field had weakened for 1000 years and if it continued would disappear probably within 120 years. When this occurred in the past massive extinction of species occurred as the protective shield against harmful radiation was removed. I wanted to know what they were planning to to do about it. They did not understand as one politician, the Member for an Ottawa seat, demonstrated by saying, “Dr. Ball, Galileo would be ashamed of you.” I replied I was deeply honoured to be mentioned in the same sentence as Galileo, but clearly the Member did not know the role of Galileo in science and I would never compare myself to him.”

    I later realized that the CFC/ozone issue was a forerunner (warm up) to the CO2/ global warming issue. Parallels are easily shown including the claims by the AGW people that the Montreal Protocol was a good template for and proof that the Kyoto Protocol would work. Indeed, there were key players for both. One, Susan Solomon a NOAA employee, was involved in claiming proof of CFC destruction over Antarctica. “Her team discovered higher levels of chlorine oxide than expected in the atmosphere, which had been released by the chlorofluorocarbons.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Susan_Solomon
    http://www.chemheritage.org/discover/chemistry-in-history/themes/public-and-environmental-health/environmental-chemistry/molina-and-solomon.aspx
    Later Ms.Solomon was Co-Chair of Working Group I from 2002 to 2008 that produced the 2007 IPCC Science Report.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/23/AR2010122303468.html
    The parallels between Montreal and Kyoto included the fact that India and China participated but refused to act. Their argument was essentially the same in both instances but modified by experience. With CFCs they said you reduced your food losses by refrigeration now you want to deny us the same opportunity. They said you reduce and allow us to increase. This was rejected so they refused participate in the Montreal Protocol. By the time Kyoto came around “developing” nations were not required to act. This led to the fiasco of China and India advancing their economies while the “developed” nations cripple theirs.

    It is time for accountability but it is also my experience that this almost never happens, especially if it involves bureaucrats.

  38. John Day says:

    @John
    > Do you know more about the findings of this article,
    > or are you on only this side of the paywall?

    You’re in luck. This was apparently “just a letter”, so is available for download here:
    http://www.atmosp.physics.utoronto.ca/~jclub/journalclub_files/haigh_2010.pdf

  39. John Day says:

    rbateman says:
    September 21, 2011 at 9:16 am

    Ralph says:
    September 21, 2011 at 7:09 am

    I agree: The Sun appears to have peaked in activity around February of 2011. The spots and AR’s, while more numerous now, are smaller and weaker.

    The solar flux index tells a different story. The big crescendo which started in Feb has indeed ended, but another crescendo has started and currently shows no sign of letting up. I agree with Leif that so far Cycle 24 has behaved pretty much like Cycle 14, and we can expect several more crescendos, even bigger, before the SC24 show is over:
    http://www.leif.org/research/SC-14-and-24.png

    Yes, the sunspots are smaller and weaker. But that’s very likely due to the Livingston&Penn effect. SFI fortunately shows lots of solar activity.

  40. John Day says:

    @me
    > … another crescendo has started and currently shows no sign of letting up …

    Solar flux still shooting upwards as we speak. It’s officially measured at 1200L (2000UTC) at the Dominion Observatory near Penticton BC. Three measurements are reported daily: the official “Noon” report and two auxiliary reports, one 3 hours before (1700UTC) and the other 3 hours after (2300UTC).
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dominion_Radio_Astrophysical_Observatory

    As you can see the official report yesterday was 144, but the unofficial reports show that today’s official Noon report, due in a few hours, will surely exceed 150.
    http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/ftpdir/lists/radio/rad.txt

    2800Mhz (10.7cm) Solar Radio Flux
    -Date-Time-> 1700Z,2000Z,2300Z
    20-Sep-2011 142,144,146
    21-Sep-2011 150,___,___

  41. Carla says:

    Dr. Lurtz says:
    September 21, 2011 at 7:05 am
    ..Energy flows downhill [in frequency]. Just use the 10.7cm Flux. That is the energy reaching the Earth. It has a base of 65 units and a “maximum” of about 280 units. We are averaging 80 to 90 units. 10% of normal for this time in the Solar Cycle.
    ~
    Thanks for the comment. Never heard it stated like that nor thought of it like that before.
    ~
    Paul Vaughan says:
    September 21, 2011 at 6:31 am
    @kadaka (KD Knoebel) [September 20, 2011 at 7:52 pm]
    ~
    I disagree, sometimes the discourse is necessary. BTW did you just waste my precious time with your unnecessary, unrelated to topic, comment. Oh thats right it is a blog and not a forum. So say what you will within the boundary lines.
    ~
    rbateman says:
    September 21, 2011 at 9:16 am
    ..The Sun appears to have peaked in activity around February of 2011. The spots and AR’s, while more numerous now, are smaller and weaker..
    ~
    Thanks for the tune-up Rob. Not enough time in a day. (but did get the trees trimmed this year)

  42. Rosco says:

    Joanna Haigh said – “In other words, “even if the predictions are correct, global warming will greatly exceed the Sun’s ability to cool the planet, even the best estimates.””

    Enough said!

  43. Rosco says:

    What I really admire about AGW scientists who have absolute faith in their position is the manner in which they implicitly assert they “know it all”. Obviously the “science is settled” argument is the pinnacle of their arrogance.

    Joanna Haigh’s statement above not only clearly demonstrates her belief system but the confidence that these people have in an unauthenticated theory.

    Should the whole thing unravel where does this leave the believers ?

  44. geo says:

    “It has a base of 65 units and a “maximum” of about 280 units. We are averaging 80 to 90 units. 10% of normal for this time in the Solar Cycle. ”

    How can 80 be 10% of something that has a maximum of 280?

  45. ROM says:

    Since i first became aware of Svensmark’s hypothesis that the amount of cloud cover over the planet is possibly heavily influenced by level of incoming cosmic rays i have also wondered about other possible terrestrial origin type life that is capable of inducing and triggering increased cloud cover.
    It has been known for a long time that cloud droplets can be and often are loaded with large numbers of bacteria and viruses as well as the presence of cloud droplet inducing chemicals such as ocean plankton releasing dimethyl sulfide;
    To quote from the “Ocean Motion” site;
    ” Many plankton release a chemical called dimethyl sulfide into the atmosphere. This chemical undergoes a series of reactions in the air to form sulfate particles. Vapor condenses around these particles to form clouds. These clouds have smaller droplets than other clouds. They therefore are brighter and reflect more sunlight back out into space, preventing the sunlight from reaching and heating Earth’s surface.”

    In the early 2000’s Indian researchers found species of very UV tolerant bacteria at heights of tens of kilometres during high altitude air sampling balloon flights.

    WUWT; “UV-Resistant Bacteria Discovered In the Stratosphere”
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/03/25/uv-resistant-bacteria-discovered-in-the-stratosphere/
    “How do microorganisms reach the stratosphere ?” http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/1556/1/wainrightm1.pdf

    From this a possible trigger for cloud formation that may be a possible adjunct to Svensmark’s hypothesis is the bacteria and viruses that are known to found in large numbers in cloud droplets. Species of such bacteria is also known to increase the probability of ice forming which creates problems for farmers as they induce freezing of water droplets and therefore the creation of ice crystals on crop leaves which in turn damages the crop at just below zero [ C ] temperatures which the crop could normally and comfortably tolerate without the presence of the freezing induced by the bacterial species.

    If we look at the combination of the India researchers identification of bacteria including highly UV resistant bacteria at high altitudes and the current considerably lower UV output of the quiet solar cycle 24 then it may be possible that the decreased solar UV levels have enabled a build up of cloud droplet inducing, UV tolerant viruses and bacteria particularly at the mid level and lower level altitudes of cloud formation.
    To the point where the increased levels of the droplet forming viruses and bacteria have created considerably increased levels of cloud cover across the planet.

    These terrestrial origin [ solar UV band tolerant ? ] viruses and bacterial cloud inducing life forms along with Svensmark’s claims on cosmic ray influences on cloud formation may possibly account for the increased global cloud cover and a higher global albedo and therefore the current leveling off and trend towards decreasing global temperatures during solar cycle 24.

  46. ROM says:

    There have been comments here on the role of solar UV in the formation of the so called ozone holes around each pole during the winter seasons with the South Pole ozone hole getting the really big play in the media and blogs in the past.
    What does not seem to be appreciated by all and sundry is that the claimed role of CFC’s in the ozone depletion within the so called hole was an almost entirely an unproven and unverified modeled exercise and the confirmation of actual chemistry involved in the conditions that exist at the heights, temperatures and pressures within the area of the hole have only been done in the last half dozen years.

    “Nature News” of the 26th Sept 2007 carried this headline;
    “Chemists poke holes in ozone theory”
    http://www.nature.com/news/2007/070924/full/449382a.html

    Naturally this got almost no recognition in the media or even science circles as so many had got onto the CFC / ozone hole gravy train that they would have been highly embarrassed to have to admit that it was all mostly an enormous gravy train scam with the biggest beneficiary being Du Pont who held the patents on the only alternative replacement Freons which are now suspected of being possibly carcinogenic. .
    James Lovelock has since said in an interview that it was the biggest scam he had seen in science. [ this interview was before the great GW scam became all encompassing ] He estimated that up to 80% of the papers on the ozone hole had either fraudulent and made up data or had seriously massaged and tortured data included.

    Quote from the “Nature News” article as above.

    “So Markus Rex, an atmosphere scientist at the Alfred Wegener Institute of Polar and Marine Research in Potsdam, Germany, did a double-take when he saw new data for the break-down rate of a crucial molecule, dichlorine peroxide (Cl2O2). The rate of photolysis (light-activated splitting) of this molecule reported by chemists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California1, was extremely low in the wavelengths available in the stratosphere — almost an order of magnitude lower than the currently accepted rate. “This must have far-reaching consequences,” Rex says. “If the measurements are correct we can basically no longer say we understand how ozone holes come into being.” What effect the results have on projections of the speed or extent of ozone depletion remains unclear.

    The rapid photolysis of Cl2O2 is a key reaction in the chemical model of ozone destruction developed 20 years ago2 (see graphic). If the rate is substantially lower than previously thought, then it would not be possible to create enough aggressive chlorine radicals to explain the observed ozone losses at high latitudes, says Rex. The extent of the discrepancy became apparent only when he incorporated the new photolysis rate into a chemical model of ozone depletion. The result was a shock: at least 60% of ozone destruction at the poles seems to be due to an unknown mechanism, Rex told a meeting of stratosphere researchers in Bremen, Germany, last week.”[end]

    The Great Ozone Hole scam cost the world an estimated US $130 billion 1998 dollars and that was just a warm up for the Great Global Warming Scam.

  47. Dr. Lurtz says:

    Math reply:
    80 units average; 65 units base; 10% =,1; …; 280 units an average peak
    80 -65 = 15
    15/.1 = 150
    150+65 = 215

    The Flux is a proxy[indicator] for all of the energy. Of course it is not all of the energy.

  48. John Day says:

    @Dr. Lurtz
    > The Flux is a proxy[indicator] for all of the energy.

    Wrong. It is not a proxy for _all_ of the energy. If it were, then the TSI would have to swing in unison (from 65 to 280 etc).

    Actually it is a very good proxy for the solar magnetic activity cycle (aka ‘sunspot cycle’). In fact it has effectively replaced the SSN, which is only around for historical continuity.

    Also, you claim that energy “Energy flows downhill [in frequency].” is backwards. Energy flows uphill. Ever heard of the Planck-Einstein equation? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planck_constant

    So as the frequency goes up, the energy goes up. At the high end the energy of X-ray/gamma photons are in the millions of electron-volts. IR photons, much lower in frequency, have energies on the order of 1 electron.

    I’ll leave energy computation of a 2800MHz microwave photon to you for homework tonight.

    :-|

  49. John Day says:

    oops,
    “…IR photons, much lower in frequency, have energies on the order of 1 electron-volt!

  50. kramer says:

    So, what’s going on with the Sun, is it still looking like it’s heading into an extended solar minimum?

  51. John Day says:

    @kramer
    > … still looking like it’s heading into an extended solar minimum?

    Have you looked at the solar activity reports lately? X1.8 flare this morning, which was unusually long, staying above M-class levels for more than 3 hours. Average flux for August was 100 and now is at 150 and climbing.
    http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/ftpdir/plots/xray/20110922_xray.gif

    So, given this current activity, what makes you think the Sun is sleeping?

    Yes, SC24 was a slow starter, but it’s looking very much like other smaller cycles such as SC14, which also had its ups and downs: http://www.leif.org/research/SC-14-and-24.png

    The first big SC24 peak (I call them ‘crescendos’ to avoid confusion with the solar max) didn’t occur until Feb 2011. That’s over and now we’re clearly on another crescendo which is likely to exceed the first.

    Looking at the historical solar flux record I think that you can see that SC24 isn’t over by a long shot.
    http://www.spaceweather.ca/sx-6-eng.php

  52. Geoff Sharp says:

    There is no point talking up SC24 at this stage, it is too early to stake a claim but the results suggest SC5 is more likely to mirror the current state of activity.

    http://www.landscheidt.info/images/sc5_sc24_19.png

  53. John Day says:

    @Geoff Sharp
    > There is no point talking up SC24 at this stage,

    Yep, no need to talk SC24 up, it seems to be going up without our help. The second “crescendo” has now surpassed the first, using rotational averages. Likely to be soon reflected in the montly average.
    http://www.spaceweather.ca/sx-7-eng.php

    Not sure about SC5 comparisons. Seems to be some uncertainty in the historical record.

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