Increased CO2 Emissions Will Delay Next Ice Age

 

An artist

Sir Fred Hoyle Vindicated
(Via Dr. Benny Peiser of the GWPF)
According to new research to be published in Nature Geoscience  (embargoed until 1800 GMT/10AM PST, Sunday 8 January 2012), the next ice age could set in any time
this millennium where it not for increases in anthropogenic CO2 emissions that are preventing such a global disaster from occurring.

The new research confirms the theory developed by the late Sir Fred Hoyle and Professor Chandra Wickramasinghe in the 1990s that without increased levels of CO2 emissions into the atmosphere ‘the drift into new ice-age conditions would be inevitable.’

Hoyle and Wickramasinghe published their controversial idea in CCNet in July 1999:

CCNet-ESSAY: ON THE CAUSE OF ICE-AGES

Fred Hoyle

 

Sir Fred Hoyle - Image via Wikipedia

http://abob.libs.uga.edu/bobk/ccc/ce120799.html

By Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe

[...] The problem for the present swollen human species is of a drift back into an ice-age, not away from an ice-age. Manifestly, we need all the greenhouse we can get, even to the extent of the British Isles becoming good for the growing of vines….

The renewal of ice-age conditions would render a large fraction of the world’s major food-growing areas inoperable, and so would inevitably lead to the extinction of most of the present human population. Since bolide impacts cannot be called up to order, we must look to a sustained greenhouse effect to maintain the present advantageous world climate. This implies the ability to inject effective greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, the opposite of what environmentalists are erroneously advocating. …

Full paper available here:

http://abob.libs.uga.edu/bobk/ccc/ce120799.html

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140 Responses to Increased CO2 Emissions Will Delay Next Ice Age

  1. Andrew says:

    From the link:

    PLEASE NOTE:

    “Information circulated on the cambridge-conference network is for
    scholarly use only.”

    So if I understand what they are saying…I can use their ‘ideas’ to promote mass hysteria? Crazy doomsday movies should not be attributed to their hypothesis’s?

    Did Mann’s hockey trick paper come with a similar disclosure statement?

  2. kim says:

    So far, I don’t see enough evidence that AnthroCO2 has enough warming effect to stop the next glaciation. I can hope, though.
    ==============

  3. Mark Hladik says:

    Except that the only “greenhouse” gas that matters, is water vapor, and about half of what comes out of your tailpipe IS water vapor, so aren’t we already doing everything we can?

    Mark H.

  4. Contrari says:

    Already? I had hoped we could have been given a tiny breathingspace between the warming scare and the freezing scare.

    Behold the world’s scaremongers reversing their predictions. It is just a matter of changing a little sign, after all.

    “…the next ice age could set in any time this millennium where it not for increases in anthropogenic CO2 emissions that are preventing such a global disaster from occurring.”

    Any time…meaning, presumably, the next decade or in five hundred years from now. Does it sound familiar?

  5. stumpy says:

    Give me global warming any day over an ice age – an ice age has far far worse implications for humanity!

  6. Fred Hoyle was right not only about this…

  7. captainfish says:

    Wait… common sense reasoning?

    Better growing seasons = good. Frozen wasteland apocalypse = bad.

    Whodathunkit.

  8. P.F. says:

    Didn’t Svante Arrhenius come to the same basic conclusion in the late 19th Century, that more anthropogenic CO2 was a good thing and would avoid another Little Ice Age? Is it not also true that Knut Ångström concluded in 1900 that CO2 was overemphasized, and Thomas Crowder wrote in the 1920s that he regretted he was a victim of Arrhenius’s error?

    Avoiding the next ice age is a good thing, but anthropogenic CO2 is inadequate to stave off such a massive cyclic climate shift.

  9. ParisParamus says:

    I find the premise of this article confusing. If AGW is a lie, how is this possible? Or, are we talking about postponing the next ice age by… Four weeks?

  10. Pat Frank says:

    If the recent increased atmospheric CO2 is not an important cause for the recent climate warming, then it is unlikely to do much to prevent any future ice age. One can’t have it both ways.

    All seven previous ice ages began, after all, just when atmospheric CO2 was at its contemporaneous maximum.

  11. okie333 says:

    Surely he isn’t serious…

  12. Njorway says:

    Yes, maybe two…three days?

  13. Ellen says:

    Here we have the basic scenario of “Fallen Angels” by Niven, Pournelle, and Flynn. 1991. Fred Hoyle wrote science fiction too — “The Black Cloud”, 1957. Since the creators of both science and science fiction can be a garrulous lot, it’d be interesting to find out which way the influences went.

  14. Pete H says:

    No way!!!!!!!!!! The models show it is impossible! Anyway, some people have just invested in property in Greenland and people around Hadrians wall in the U.K. are producing wine from grapes! As for those poor white bears moving into their brown coats……….This is so unfair! ;-)

  15. PaulR says:

    The rational position on anthropogenic CO2 is that it is a greehouse gas but with a small, miniscule and negligible effect and there is no amplifying factor to make it larger, or large enough to matter.

    Therefore, CO2 can’t delay the next ice age significantly either.

  16. “the next ice age could set in any time this millennium where it not for increases in anthropogenic CO2…”

    Should that not be “were”?

    And, well, harumph, this is just very strange. Have your cake and eat it too. More crystal-ball waving, as if the warmists didn’t do it enough.

  17. Area Man says:

    Is it not a reasonable test for any climate model that it be required to faithfully show regular glaciation/”ice ages” in order to be taken seriously, since we know the climate does behave in that way historically?

    If so, do any of the current “best” climate models show such events arising spontaneously as they did in earth’s history?

  18. What volume of gas added to the atmosphere would it take to overcome the solar wind the gravity could retain? An object strike would eject some energy into space. Maybe some large oceanic caldera would produce enough energy to quickly overcome the gripping ice.

  19. Alan Statham says:

    You have spent years denying in the face of all the evidence that CO2 has any effect on global temperatures. Suddenly you’ve realised that it can have a major effect. Nice to see you actually might have some capacity for learning!

  20. Interstellar Bill says:

    If our CO2 is preventing the next Glaciation then it’s a good thing,
    in light of the 2010 Science article saying
    that the next one will likely not end at all.
    In fact, it might suck CO2 down so low
    that all plants on Earth would die.
    Just because extra CO2 won’t cause catastrophe
    doesn’t mean it has zero effect.

    Besides, it’s easy to stop an Ice Age as it’s starting:
    just dump coal dust on Labrador’s summer snow,
    which is where the last Glaciation began.

  21. Babsy says:

    ParisParamus says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:16 am

    Oh, the HUMANITY! Where is R Gates when we need him/her? We’re terribly in need of a model!

  22. Jerker Andersson says:

    If most or all of the increase is of anthropogenic origin then the extra greenhouseffect from CO2 could delay the next iceage some, indeed. For humans living today it is rather irrellevant since it is a slow drift over several millenia. First the climate has to slowly drift to the point where Little Ice age climate is considered as a normal climate and we know that didn’t happen over a decade.

    If currently a majority of the CO2 increase is of natural origin due to increased temperature (Henrys law) then the discussion about anthropogenic CO2 delaying the next ice age becomes less important since more than half of the increse then could be due to rising temperatures and not due to anthropogenic emissions.

  23. cui bono says:

    This is climate alarmism in reverse. There are plenty of reasons for believing the next few decades will trend cooler, but no need to try to net off one catastrophe with its opposite.

  24. Doug Proctor says:

    ParisParamus says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:16 am
    I find the premise of this article confusing. If AGW is a lie, how is this possible? Or, are we talking about postponing the next ice age by… Four weeks?

    A very valid point. Can’t have it both ways .. unless you think like a warmist, that is.

  25. Dan Lee says:

    Good, they’re reminding us of what we know with absolute certainty can happen at any moment, namely the end of the Holocene and a transition to Mama Nature’s real plans for the next 100,000 years. A descent into the next ice age would make even the worst case alarmist scenarios look rosy.

    Even if it becomes a “next big scare”, at least its solutions won’t involve stamping out energy production at the same time the world’s economies are sliding into a tar pit of massively over-leveraged debt.

  26. George says:

    I really don’t see how CO2 is going to have enough of an impact. The “top” of our greenhouse is the tropopause. What is going to matter most for the temperature within the troposphere is the temperature from the tropopause upward. Stratospheric heating is mostly caused by solar UV heating. A decrease in solar UV would, I would think, result in a greater cooling of the stratosphere than any increase in CO2 might cause heating.

  27. AndyG55 says:

    Chuckle.. Fred Hoyle is a well known “denier”

    He is just having a bit of fun at the expense of the warmist bretheren.

  28. Alan Statham says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:47 am

    Alan, you seem to have both a critical thinking and reading deficiency problem. Are you ever going to contribute anything here?

  29. Guam says:

    Oh dear lord how much more nonsense are we going to see, I keep on top of this stuff and even I have a real problem keeping a straight face at this stuff these days. What do these guys think the general public are going to think of this latest piece of Hype?

    They will laugh their socks off and rightly so imho!

  30. Kaboom says:

    So it would be quite literally be a crime against future generations to let our CO2 output lapse or they’ll all be buried under a mile of ice.

  31. quidsapio says:

    Sorry, as someone else has said – you can’t claim simultaneously that manmade CO2 is not causing warming, but *is* preventing an Ice Age by causing warming!

  32. R. Gates says:

    Apparently Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe did not understand that greenhouse gases do nothing at all to warm our atmosphere as according to certain skeptics all (or 99.5%) of the warming if from gravity and the ideal gas law.

    In my estimation, it would not at all surprize me if there was a bit of truth to the notion that the next glacial advance based on Milankovitch cycles could be somewhat inhibited by higher greenhouse gases than we’ve seen at the end of previous interglacials. I think the exact computation of this is difficult however without taking the full earth-system response into account when balancing the reduced insolation from the Milankovitch cycle that sets up a glacial advance versus the higher levels of greenhouse gases. However, I’m not convinced that by Milankovtich cycles that the next glacial advance would be coming in the next thousand years anyway.

    This article does a very good job at looking at these issues:

    http://hol.sagepub.com/content/early/2011/02/26/0959683610394885.abstract

  33. a reader says:

    Hoyle had some rather wild ideas about ice ages down through the years. I read his book “Ice” written in 1981. It was pretty roundly panned I believe, although like many wrong ideas, it’s still fun to read (but that’s just me.)

    He seemed to think ice ages began when supercooled water in the upper atmosphere formed ice crystals at -40C and scattered incoming sunlight with enough going back into space to cool the earth. If I remember correctly, but I may not, so now I guess I’ll have to go back and reread. He did have some weird ideas about erratics and how they were transported but some of his questions about how they got where they ended up were interesting.

  34. R. Gates says:

    Here’s the full article from my previoius post which only gave a link to the abstract:

    http://hol.sagepub.com/content/21/5/803.full.pdf

  35. mike williams says:

    Alan Statham says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:47 am
    You have spent years denying in the face of all the evidence that CO2 has any effect on global temperatures.

    No need for humorous sophistry please. Most commentators here in the face of ALL the evidence have always stated that it has a negligible effect on climate.Unlike the $CAGW$ crowd.

  36. Gareth Phillips says:

    I seem to recall Arthur C Clark mentioning this idea in the 80s in his predictions of possible future scenarios. He was also a fiction writer who’s concepts often became realised.

  37. M.A.Vukcevic says:

    Ice Age ?
    No I would not think so, not for many thousands of years.
    Here is Vukcevic hypothesis for
    Ice Age failure in the current ‘cold’ Milankovic cycle
    There are 3 major ridges in the North Atlantic arranged in a shape of the Greek letter ‘pi’:
    Greenland – Scotland, Faroe and Reykjanes.
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NA3R.htm
    The first two are dormant and the Reykjanes is the only active one.
    The important one is the Greenland – Scotland ridge which controls inflow of the warm and the outflow of cold water in and out the Arctic Ocean.
    Only if the G-S ridge becomes active and raises see floor reducing the cold Arctic outflow the Arctic ice build up would reach tipping point.
    Fortunately the ridge is not active and even if it became active, it might take many thousands of years for the ridge to become critical, by then the N. Hemisphere could be in the next ‘warm’ Milankovic cycle.
    No need for concern.

  38. phlogiston says:

    This ClimateGate 2 email (from the recent post listing 250 CG2 emails) sheds some light on climate apparatchik’s “thinking” on the subject of global warming and the next ice age:

    http://tomnelson.blogspot.com/2012/01/email-4141-glimpse-into-climate-science.html

    Oddly it seems that someone somewhere has woken up to the fact that the current interglacial could end at any time. Its priceless how they are trying to keep the public focussed on global warming which they evidently have stopped even believing themselves, and keep the ice age question swept under the carpet.

  39. Baa Humbug says:

    I’ll leave a note in my will for my great great great great great great great great great great great great grandchildren to stay in Australia.

  40. ferd berple says:

    from the paper:
    In distant geological periods the heat storage in the oceans was
    considerably greater than it is at present. Today the ocean bottom
    waters are close to freezing, whereas only 50 million years ago the
    bottom temperature was about 15’C and the available oceanic heat was
    then equivalent to a 50 year supply of sunlight. The difference has
    been caused by drifting continents, especially by the positioning of
    Antarctica and Greenland at or close to the poles. Melt water from
    arctic glaciers has gradually filled the lower ocean with water close
    to freezing, greatly reducing the margin of safety against ice-age
    conditions developing. This is why the past million years has been
    essentially a continuing ice-age, broken occasionally by short-lived
    interglacials. It is also why those who have engaged in lurid talk over
    an enhanced greenhouse effect raising the Earth’s temperature by a
    degree or two should be seen as both demented and dangerous. The
    problem for the present swollen human species is of a drift back into
    an ice-age, not away from an ice-age.

  41. Anymoose says:

    To believe this and any of the climate change claptrap that is being passed around masquerading as science, you must believe that CO2 traps heat. So far, I have seen nothing that passes as proof.

    Likewise, I have seen nothing in the way of proof that there is a greenhouse in the atmosphere. Therefore, I am skeptical of the whole greenhouse theory.

    I tend to think that the gas laws of Boyle and Charles and the laws of thermodynamics are still valid, and will be for the foreseeable future.

  42. a reader says:

    OK, if you read the linked CCnet paper, it basically explains the same theory as “Ice”. He thinks the Milankovic forcing is incapable of cooling the whole earth at once.

  43. ferd berple says:

    R. Gates says:
    January 8, 2012 at 11:42 am
    However, I’m not convinced that by Milankovtich cycles that the next glacial advance would be coming in the next thousand years anyway.

    From the paper:
    “Claims in favour of the astronomical theory, made from numerical computer studies, say more
    about the work of computer studies than they do about ice-ages.”

  44. JC says:

    A new cooling scare won’t go anywhere IMO, even if realistic, unless it’s based on aerosols. Shutting down industry by regulating CO2 isn’t just a means to control AGW. It is actually the goal (of a certain element of the movement of course). This kind of cooling scare won’t justify de industrialization.

  45. otsar says:

    Yet another authority is used for extolling and enabling the magical powers of CO2. A dead one this time. Simple minded argument with a simple minded conclusion: CO2 is a very magical gas. If we can control the ammount of CO2 we can control climate.
    As long as the argument is confined to the head of a pin, control of the dialogue is not lost, and the orthodoxy remains intact.

  46. AndyG55 says:

    “The Black Cloud” sits in my book collection, along with
    “Energy or Extinction? The case for nuclear energy.”

    First is well written fun piece of fiction.
    The second, is non-fiction (late 1970’s iirc) and illustrates Western culture’s dependance on energy… and predicts that nuclear will finally be the sensible major source.

  47. Andre says:

    That’s an old article full of speculation, assuming that we have nailed the mechanism of the ice age. The more we discover, the further we are away from that. Right now we know that when the ice advanced south of the great lakes, during the last glacial maximum, summer temperatures in Arctic Siberia are higher than today. Also winter temperatures are constrained by the winter hardiness of species found in sediments and mammoth gutters. Where once a big ice sheets were projected, to balance the sea level – ice volume equation, in reality, horses, musk ox and reindeers roamed the steppes of Siberia (now taiga and tundra) -oh and mammoths too.

    Also analysis of the amazone fan and other sediments have determined that the biological output of the Brazilian rainforest then was on the same levels of today.

    So it looks like the estimate of the avergae global temperature during the last glacial maximum needs some revision too.

  48. Victor Barney says:

    Thankyou for using science to answer these marxist’s driven intellectual fools!

  49. a jones says:

    I studied under Hoyle until he threw me out for being a Big Bang heretic.

    By some time in the 70’s he was advocating preventing an ice age by pumping cold deep ocean water to the surface supposedly to warm the oceans over time sufficiently. Never saw that his energetics were sound on this myself. There is only so much sunlight to go round as it were.

    But even a back of the envelope calculation suggested the amount of pumping capacity needed was so far beyond any realistic assessment of the economic and engineering capabilities of that time, and indeed even now, as to be utter fantasy.

    Never terribly strong on such practicalities our Sir Fred. Like so many very clever men, and he was, he had problems in understanding how the world works in terms of people. Much the same as many theorists of Marxism, Greenery and other supposedly revolutionary movements that are going to improve or save the world.

    But as far as a future ice age goes I too am a fan of using carbon black to block advancing ice sheets. But I suspect by the time the problem actually occurs we will have much better technology than that.

    As for CO2 preventing an ice age: once again that is also pure fantasy.

    Kindest Regards

  50. Graeme says:

    Ice Ages – bullish for property prices in Australia…?!

    (Of course – the climate will need to be sensitive to CO2 to stop or delay the next ice age, and the world has experienced icy times with high CO2 – so no go).

  51. Mark H. says: Except that the only “greenhouse” gas that matters, is water vapor, and about half of what comes out of your tailpipe IS water vapor, so aren’t we already doing everything we can?

    industrial waste dihydrogenmonoxide (alias water) variable 20% to 100% (relative)
    CO2 0.04% (threateningly high)

    I leave all my cars idling overnight, switched from heat pump to coal burning stove heat (in all 12 rooms, of course), use propane gas range and hot water, all bees wax candle lighting, fly on airplanes with at least 4 engines, stop at both green and red lights, painted my roof black, lawn too, distill all yard waste into alcohols, burn that too, burn all my garbage, waste trips to the store (more CO2/H2O saturated beer),…still cheaper than alternative renewable energy, and increases sweating.

  52. Bomber_the_Cat says:

    Jerker Andersson says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:55 am

    “…the extra greenhouse effect from CO2 could delay the next iceage some, indeed. For humans living today it is rather irrellevant since it is a slow drift over several millenia”

    Not necessarily, changes into ice age conditions have been known to occur very rapidly according to that the undisputed authority the IPCC. For instance, in their Arctic Impact Assessment Report (2005) they say, in Section 2.7.3.2. “The Eemian ended with abrupt changes …..occurring over a period of less than 400 years”.
    [The Eemian is the name of the inter-glacial before this present one which is called the Holocene].

    As for speed of climate change they also say, Section 2.7.4.1 , ” very rapid temperature increases at the start of the Bølling-Allerød period (14.5 ky BP; everinghaus and Brook, 1999) or at the end of the Younger Dryas (~11 ky BP) may have occurred at rates as large as 10 ºC per 50 years over substantial areas of the Northern Hemisphere.”
    Now that’s what I call climate change! Not your petty fraction of a degree warming over 130 years but 10 degrees in the span of a lifetime. One day you are planting tomatoes in your garden and when they ripen you dare not go and get them because there is a woolly mammoth standing there.

  53. the_Butcher says:

    I never thought we were enduring an Ice Age before emitting CO2…

  54. Alan Watt says:

    I think we can’t afford to take a risk here. Clearly the effect of C02 is over-rated, so no matter how much fossil fuel we burn it won’t stave off the next ice age. The obvious solution is to build massive numbers of nuclear power plants, and dump the waste heat in the deep oceans. Since we’ll have so much nuclear electric capacity, we can decommission all the coal and oil power plants. This will reduce pollution, reduce C02 (which will make the Carbon Cult happy [maybe]), and send a lot less $$ to dubious regimes in the Middle East. Meanwhile all that extra heat in the deep oceans will stop or at least hold off the next ice age.

    This is a win-win-win: we get lots of cheap electricity; The Carbon Cult gets to claim victory on reduced pollution (both real and imagined); and we still get to take beach vacations in places like Florida (unless it disappears due to heat-expanded rising oceans — oh well, more beachfront property for Texas). And we won’t have to disrupt our education system with crash courses on igloo building, so our kids can still learn all those valuable lessons on sustainable development.

    I think this is a plan we can all get behind. After all, the alternative is just too terrible to contemplate.

  55. Philip Bradley says:

    Previous interglacials warmed to a peak and then temperatures declined rapidly. This one is different, the peak was lower then temperatures flatlined.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ice_Age_Temperature.png

    This interglacial’s peak coincides with the advent of agriculture, which indicates to me that anthropogenic climate change goes back several thousand years and has had a net cooling effect. It also indicates there is a warm tipping point into the cold phase, which we have yet to reach.

    Which leads to the conclusion, if CO2 does indeed warm the climate as much as the Wamers claim then it will rapidly tip us into the next glacial period of the ice age.

  56. J Martin says:

    Ice core graphs show that Co2 is much more quickly absorbed once cooling gets under way, so even if co2 has any greenhouse effect it won’t be enough.

    Future generations will need something a great deal more potent, and probably man made.

    There is a pdf somewhere in which the author thinks the glaciation began in 1999. Not mentioned in the one below. The question is perhaps not so much when as how fast we slide into it. Chances are we don’t have to drop too far in before some of the more Northern countries become uninhabitable, including perhaps the UK. On the one hand the Gulf stream keeps us warm, but on the other hand, that warm moist atmosphere colliding with cold air from the North could bring destructive amounts of snow to the UK.

    This forthcoming minimum that we will be entering once we get past solar max in a year or 3 should give us and the next generation a taste and perhaps some clues as to what is to inevitably come. But on previous evidence it’s been a slow drop, so perhaps mankind will adapt without too much bloodshed.

    One thing’s for sure, no amount of co2 will save us. If the media get all excited over the forthcoming minimum, or the next glaciation, they will at least be getting excited over something that is actually going to happen sooner or later, rather than getting excited over global warming caused by co2 which isn’t happening and will never happen.

    http://solarcycle25.com/attachments/database/ThePastandFutureofClimate5thJune2009Archibald.pdf

  57. ferd berple says:

    The Precautionary Principle demands that we take all possible steps to prevent the next ice age, as it would render most countries outside the tropics uninhabitable. Even if the evidence is not conclusive that CO2 prevents ice ages, we must act now to increase CO2 and thus prevent a catastrophic cooling.

    Hats of to the US and lately China that have taken a leadership role and spent hundreds of trillions of dollars in an attempt to bring global CO2 levels back to pre ice-age levels and thus prevent the end of human civilization. This in the face of stiff opposition from groups seeking to significantly reduce the population of “other” humans, and thus preventing them from competing for scarce natural resources.

    Whether their actions will be in time is a matter of debate. According to Wikipedia, we are overdue for the next ice age. Based on Paleo records, the next ice age is heralded by a period in increasing climate change. According to the UN IPCC and many leading climate scientists, we are in just such a climatic period.

  58. Latitude says:

    So the fall back position…….but it would have been colder or earlier……a whole 2/10th of a degree colder

    Why not, can’t prove or disprove it….

  59. Edim says:

    Yeah, right!

  60. casw says:

    The ironing will be that the deadhead politicians will tax us to warm the planet for another ton of grain. Really, if they are so gullible or so lazy or time poor not to do some research now, how can we expect any decent policies in the future.
    Of course, the greens sweat on all 3 of those problems, that is why the IPCC can get away with its outrageous anti-science palaver.

  61. Dave Wendt says:

    Although the “consensus” view among the WUWT community is that CO2 lacks the power to move the climate to a dangerously warmer state, the other “consensus” community holds a directly opposite view. What Sir Fred has done through an artful bit of argumentation jujitsu is to offer a scenario under which in the long run no matter which viewpoint should eventually prevail, adding more CO2 to the atmosphere will always be more of a benefit than a detriment. If the catastrophists are correct, CO2 will be able to keep the planet from descending into another LIA or worse (BTW although much has been made of the relatively small increase in global temps since the end of the LIA, is there anyone out there who would be willing to argue that a return to those conditions would be a good thing?). If the skeptical position should prevail we will end up at the mercy of the natural cyclical descent into the next round of glacial advancement, but we will at least have the positive photosynthetic benefits and other beneficial effects of higher CO2 levels to mitigate the transition to a colder planet.

  62. George E. Smith; says:

    Well we ARE in a pickle. Do we even have enough coal and oil to warm the place up to fight off the evil ice follies ?

    This is amazing, not only do the experts know that it is for sure that we are accelerating the recovery from the last ice age; but they also are sure that we are holding off the next one.

    Should we ban coal burning all together, so that we have some left for the fire when the next deep freeze hits ?

  63. RockyRoad says:

    ferd berple says:
    January 8, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    R. Gates says:
    January 8, 2012 at 11:42 am
    However, I’m not convinced that by Milankovtich cycles that the next glacial advance would be coming in the next thousand years anyway.

    From the paper:
    “Claims in favour of the astronomical theory, made from numerical computer studies, say more
    about the work of computer studies than they do about ice-ages.”

    Good point, ferd, but not surprising. R. is all about models, not science.

  64. R. de Haan says:

    Interglacials have higher CO2 levels than ice Ages, that’s what the ice cores tell us..
    Tho conclude that CO2 prevents temperatures to go down is just as dumb as the claim they drive temperatures up. CO2 is not a climate driver.

    Same old tiresome crowd repacking same old tiresome wine.

    Chateaux Migrane, completely tasteless

  65. Jimbo says:

    I maybe wrong but I do vaguely recall higher co2 levels of the past being unable to stop some previous ice ages. Anyway, we would need to chuck out lots more water vapour and methane.

  66. jones says:

    An early paper of Hoyle’s made an interesting use of the anthropic principle. In trying to work out the routes of stellar nucleosynthesis, he observed that one particular nuclear reaction, the triple-alpha process, which generates carbon, would require the carbon nucleus to have a very specific resonance energy for it to work. The large amount of carbon in the universe, which makes it possible for carbon-based life-forms of any kind to exist, demonstrated that this nuclear reaction must work. Based on this notion, he made a prediction of the energy levels in the carbon nucleus that was later borne out by experiment.

    ‘he made a prediction of the energy levels in the carbon nucleus that was later borne out by experiment.”

    “later borne out by experiment.”

    Can’t argue with that anyway…..

  67. AndyG55 says:

    A major point is that there has never been a period where the planet was unsustainable because of too much warmth.
    The planet’s life-sustaining problems have always been because it’s got too cold.

    Warmth is GOOD !!

    CO2 is GOOD !!

  68. polistra says:

    I don’t trust hidden variables no matter which side they’re on. Any time I hear “If not for X, Y would overwhelm us….” I stop listening.

    There are some simple mechanical situations where you can make this argument. If I release the parking brake, the “hidden power” of the engine will be able to move the car. Okay, valid.

    But in complex systems like the climate, you can’t pit one multi-stage extrapolation against another multi-stage extrapolation without a direct controlled experiment.

  69. The water then thrown high into the stratosphere provided a large temporary greenhouse effect, but sufficient to produce a warming of the world ocean down to a depth of a few hundred metres.
    It is this warming that maintains the resulting interglacial period. The interglacial climate possesses only neutral equilibrium however.
    It experiences random walk both up and down, until a situation arises in which the number of steps downward become sufficient for the Earth to fall back into the ice-age trap.
    Thereafter only a further large bolide impact can produce a departure from the grey, drab iceage conditions.
    This will be so in the future unless Man finds an effective way to maintain a suitably large greenhouse effect.

    It is very easy to simulate the saw tooth like ice age oscillations for the last Million years using the sun’s density and photon diffusion time with high correlation to a sample in the Antarctica after the suggestion from Prof. R. Ehrlich.

    http://www.volker-doormann.org/images/solar_fig_4.jpg

    This means that the terrestrial temperature steps of ~+8°C in two or three years holding for some 10ky needs a real heat source boost in Watt. Show the oven.

    Random is not an observable in physics.

    V.

  70. Robert Austin says:

    Alan Statham says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:47 am
    “You have spent years denying in the face of all the evidence that CO2 has any effect on global temperatures. Suddenly you’ve realised that it can have a major effect. Nice to see you actually might have some capacity for learning!”

    Another lame drive-by by Statham. I suggest Alan Statham take notes from R. Gates in the proper way to engage in civilized discourse when your goal is to actually turn others to your point of view.

  71. jaymam says:

    a jones says:
    “But as far as a future ice age goes I too am a fan of using carbon black to block advancing ice sheets”

    So am I. We can easily stop advancing ice sheets. Problem solved.

  72. John-X says:

    What a pantload.

    Whether his language is intentional or just careless, he doesn’t conceal his misanthropic bias.

    Fred, the “present human species” (misanthropic self-loathing evident already) is not “swollen.”

    “…bolide impacts cannot be called up to order,,,”

    Oh, what a shame! If only we could order up an asteroid to smash into the earth and kill off a few hundred million of the “swollen” species.

    Science-fiction fantasy of “geoengineering” the climate with CO2 or anything else is mental masturbation of a kind similar to “global warming” scaremongering.

  73. Bomber_the_Cat says:

    Jimbo says:
    January 8, 2012 at 1:22 pm
    “I maybe wrong but I do vaguely recall higher co2 levels of the past being unable to stop some previous ice ages. Anyway, we would need to chuck out lots more water vapour and methane.”

    No, you are right. At the end of the Ordovician period, about 450 million years ago, the Earth plunged into an ice age when CO2 levels were about ten times higher than they are now. Then when CO2 levels dropped, at the start of the Silurian, the Earth pulled out of its ice age and went back to an average temperature of about 22 deg.C
    See graph of CO2 levels vs. temperature for past 800 million years of geological record. http://ff.org/centers/csspp/library/co2weekly/2005-08-18/dioxide_files/image002.gif

  74. Al Gored says:

    The Brits should stick to comedy and rock-and-roll. They are good at that.

  75. Rosco says:

    Gee people – don’t overestimate Ice Ages – there is little evidence the glaciers extended much below 40 degrees N and nothing like 40 S in the southern hemisphere.

    Now that may be inconvenient to those who live beyond those latitudes but it is the other effects – primarily food production – which raise issues.

    I’m expecting some cooling where I live but remining habitable – and we have no vacancy for migrants – Sorry.

  76. Jerker Andersson says:

    Bomber_the_Cat says:
    January 8, 2012 at 12:23 pm
    “Now that’s what I call climate change! Not your petty fraction of a degree warming over 130 years but 10 degrees in the span of a lifetime. One day you are planting tomatoes in your garden and when they ripen you dare not go and get them because there is a woolly mammoth standing there.”

    I don’t like tomatoes and I don’t like having a mammoth in my garden either(I think).
    Even though that was a warming pulse it is amazingly fast and it surely could be possible it happens it in reverse if it is real. Cosidering the frequency if such large changes I am not to worried it will happen during my lifetime. I am very well aware of that we during this interglacial have hade changes up to 3C/100years according to ice cores, much greater than we have had so far but that is oscillations and not permanent step changes.But if such fast and massive temperature changes can happen both ways and they are permanent, we certainly dont want a downward spike, I don’t think 10C up would be an good idea either though. History tells us that the world has gotten a worse place to live on when temperature makes a significant drop even though we probably could handle it better today than 200 or 400 years ago..

  77. thingadonta says:

    Everyone knows that Gaia evolved us to release c02 into the atmosphere to stop the next mass extinction as the world slips into a permanent ice age. Now that the gases are released, mission accomplished, and just in time, probably just a few more ice ages and there would be no more warm integlacials.

  78. Lars P. says:

    Alan Statham says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:47 am
    “You have spent years denying in the face of all the evidence that CO2 has any effect on global temperatures. Suddenly you’ve realised that it can have a major effect. Nice to see you actually might have some capacity for learning!”

    Unfortunately you do not show any signs of learning yet Alan. Have you read anything on this or other skeptics sites before posting the nonsense above? Do you have any support for your “denying” nonsense?
    There is the effect of heat transfer through radiation that is facilitated through CO2 which is known by skeptics who know science. How this should lead to any catastrophe is the question. If you have any idea about it pls don’t try to post a link, try to explain it by your own words, lets see how far gets our and your understanding of science.
    Please try first read what skeptics say before insulting:
    http://www.john-daly.com/artifact.htm

  79. ferd berple says:

    Rosco says:
    January 8, 2012 at 2:40 pm
    Gee people – don’t overestimate Ice Ages

    Have a look at the Aral Sea disaster for an idea of what an Ice Age will bring. Rising sea levels are nothing compared to dropping sea levels.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aral_Sea
    The shrinking of the Aral Sea has been called “one of the planet’s worst environmental disasters”.[7]

  80. Jim Barker says:

    Warmer/ colder whateverer. We need more and cheaper energy everywhere on the planet. We can always build more greenhouses, turn the lights on-off, cool-heat, as long as we have more power. I won’t go so far as to suggest warming the oceans, cause that’s just crazy.

  81. Steve P says:

    Rosco says:
    January 8, 2012 at 2:40 pm

    Gee people – don’t overestimate Ice Ages – there is little evidence the glaciers extended much below 40 degrees N and nothing like 40 S in the southern hemisphere.

    Roscoe, please inform us of your personal experience with Ice Ages, or ice sheets, that allows you to be so dismissive of their danger.

    During the Illinoian Stage, the Laurentide ice sheet covered about 85 percent of Illinois. At its maximum extent during this stage, this ice sheet reached its southernmost extent in North America near Carbondale, Illinois. At their maximum extent, the edge of Illinoian ice sheet(s) lay further south than the southernmost extent, i.e. Douglas County, Kansas, of any of the Pre-Illinoian ice sheets.[10]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Illinoian_%28stage%29
    `
    Carbondale is located at 37°43′35″N 89°13′13″W (Wiki)

    A few hundred miles further north lie such modest settlements as,say, Chicago.

    No, ice sheets ranging from a few hundred feet to a few thousand feet thick present no danger whatsoever to us humans – we’ll just carry on with solar-powered sleds, or something – but a tiny increase in “global temperature” is really something to fear.

    Is that the way you see it Roscoe?

  82. My post here: http://auscm.co/wtvYvw – I need a few of those 100m hits… ;-)

    The link from GWPF to the original source at Australian Popular Science (http://auscm.co/wUkqxK) is broken. Cached version still exists, however (http://auscm.co/w8bDMU). No sign of this article on Nature Geoscience either (yet).

    Cheers,
    Simon
    Australian Climate Madness

  83. Sorry Fred, Sir,
    I have not yet been convinced that CO2 is potent enough to do much warming, much more less to delay the onset of a delayed ice-age.

    Warmistas have taken to Fred Hoyle lately, it would seem. Not this amateur astronomer, for one.

  84. AnonyMoose says:

    I suspect that the caption on that image is not supposed to be “An artist”.

  85. Steve from Rockwood says:

    Es nes non? This is nonsense in reverse.

  86. Allan MacRae says:

    Claim:
    “According to new research to be published in Nature Geoscience (embargoed until 1800 GMT/10AM PST, Sunday 8 January 2012), the next ice age could set in any time
    this millennium were it not for increases in anthropogenic CO2 emissions that are preventing such a global disaster from occurring.”

    Analysis of Claim:
    1. “the next ice age could set in any time this millennium… ”
    – Probably TRUE for the next ~5000 years if not the next 1000 years, based on the last four ice advances.
    2. “… were it not for increases in anthropogenic CO2 emissions that are preventing such a global disaster from occurring.”
    – Probably FALSE since CO2 is a minor driver of global temperature, if it drives temperature at all.

    Analysis of Claim, based on Nature’s track record:
    When is the last time Nature was right about anything to do with global warming, aka climate change? I honestly cannot remember any, but then I stopped reading Nature some time ago.

  87. Caleb says:

    RE: thingadonta says:
    January 8, 2012 at 2:59 pm
    “Everyone knows that Gaia evolved us to release c02 into the atmosphere to stop the next mass extinction as the world slips into a permanent ice age. Now that the gases are released, mission accomplished, and just in time, probably just a few more ice ages and there would be no more warm integlacials.”

    Exactly! Why else would Gaia have put all that coal in the rocks, and then evolved us? And anyone who disagrees with this view is saying Gaia is stupid. I shudder to think of the fate that may await them!

  88. Arizona CJ says:

    I’m far from convinced on the proposed theory, though I’m delighted to see it recognize the fact that cooling would be far worse that warming.

    I’ve long been an AGW lurkwarmist; I do believe that anthropogenic activity has a warming impact on climate. However, I believe this impact is about an order of magnitude less than the average low end AGW claims. In other words, not enough to worry about. I also feel it has many sources. We know that the urban heat island effect is real, so is it such a stretch to believe that such “heat islands” might have a minuscule impact on global temps? I also suspect that farming has a far greater impact; changing the albedo of the land over vast areas, while also pumping vast amounts of water vapor into the air. I even think that Co2 plays a role, though a very minor one. (if AGW results in a one tenth of a degree warming over a century, my guess is that CO2 would be responsible for less than a tenth of that, so one hundredth of a degree.)

    CO2 seems to me to be a very good lagging indicator of temperature; it tracks temps rather well, though with an 800 year lag. So, I think it can best be seen as a lagging indicator, not a driver (unless we incorporate time-traveling CO2 into the AGW models)

    Ice melting? I’ve been to the arctic, and I’ve seen the slight dustings of black (best seen in snow that’s sublimating) soot, believed to come largely from dirty coal plants in China and Siberia. I think that effect is real, but not bad enough to be a real concern yet.

    I’ve also seen conclusive evidence, all over the world, that the last interglacial, the Eemian, was far warmer than today. This includes islands that were coral reefs in that period, but now that coral is basement rock well above sea level (geologic uplift can do this, by I’m taking islands where that’s not a factor). There were hippopotamus in the Thames and many other proofs that the climate, globally, was far warmer. Somehow, I think the planet survived.

    Glaciation, on the other hand, would be a disaster, and we’re already overdue. This interglacial is already well above average length, and the main issue as I see it is that while we have theories, we don’t know for certain what the driving factor of the glacial cycles is, nor do we know the tipping points. And, glaciation does appear to have feedback loops and tipping points.

    The last interglacial ended rather suddenly; temps dropped by over 4 C in under six years. True, it took the ice sheets centuries to build, but the temp drop that triggered the glaciation was sudden, and such a drop would be agriculturally devastating.

    I do think that a drop to glacial era temps ( 5C less than today, or thereabouts) is by far the greatest threat we face, so I’m thrilled to see an article regarding it, even if I disagree with the CO2 premise in it.

    Now, what causes glacial cycles and their stunning regularity? One theory is orbital perturbations, which are cyclic. Another might be solar (we know the sun has some cyclic patterns, though a 100k cycle hasn’t been shown yet, and is only a guess).
    However, why are these mutually exclusive? They aren’t. What if orbital changes are the main driver, but short-term solar cycles (such as the Maunder Minimum causing the little ice age) are enough to take us past the glacial tipping point when the orbital conditions are right?

  89. Bill Illis says:

    We are at least 50,000 years away from the next ice age.

    The ice ages start when the snow and ice does not melt in the summer at 75N any longer – on Baffin Island, northern Greenland, the Beaufort Sea. Small glaciers build up and this kicks off the ice albedo feedback which puts us into a full-blown ice age.

    The June solar insolation at 65N (75N would be better but the charts always use 65N) needs to fall to below about 460 W/m2 for the snow and ice to stop melting over the summer.

    http://peakwatch.typepad.com/.a/6a00d83452403c69e2015390afcbe3970b-800wi

    So 50,000 years potentially, but more likely, 130,000 years from now. There is just a tiny, tiny reduction in the current summer solar insolation (a few W/m2) over the next few thousand years before it starts going back up again. More than enough to continue melting basically all of the snow and ice at 75N over the summer. So no ice for you.

  90. Richard Sharpe says:

    I am skeptical that CO2 has anything to do with whether or not we enter or leave an ice age or indeed resist the onset of the next ice age.

  91. Mike McMillan says:

    Total baloney. When the ice age decides to begin (1998?), it’s gonna begin.

  92. kim says:

    @ DotEarth, James Hansen has promised Andy Revkin that anthroCO2 can stop glaciation. I wish I had more faith in his promises.
    ==========

  93. Doug Cotton says:

    Firstly, a matter of terminology. There have only been five “ice ages” and we are still in the fifth one. If what we are talking about is really glacial cycles, then it appears that, for the last million years or so, the predominant cycle has been of about 100,000 years periodicity, with roughly 70,000 years glacial and 30,000 years interglacial in each cycle. We are about 10,000 years into the current interglacial period.

    There is debate as to the controlling mechanism, be it Earth’s eccentricity or orbital inclination. See, for example, this* Wikipedia item from which I quote …

    “The inclination of Earth’s orbit drifts up and down relative to its present orbit with a cycle having a period of about 70,000 years. The inclination of the Earth’s orbit has a 100,000 year cycle relative to the invariable plane. This is very similar to the 100,000 year eccentricity period. This 100,000-year cycle closely matches the 100,000-year pattern of ice ages.”

    The long and the short of it seems to be that we should not worry about there being another glacial period for at least another 20,000 years, or possibly somewhat more than that. It seems fairly likely that mankind will have the technology to cope with such well before then.

    Yes, I do believe there is a much shorter-term cycle of about 900 to 1,000 years having less effect in terms of degrees of variation. This would seem to imply a maximum within the next hundred years (probably not much above 1998 temperatures) followed by a 450 to 500 year decline towards another Little Ice Age. If is possible we may have passed the maximum in 1998 and be already on the decline, but I don’t see it taking less than 400 odd years. If some of that $100,000,000,000 a year for developing countries were invested in insulation and heating appliances, we all should cope.

    * http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milankovitch_cycles

  94. stuartlynne says:

    Of course the “Precautionary Principle” means that we really need to leave all the oil, gas and coal in the ground so that future generations will have it available to fight off the next ice age when it approaches in the up coming centuries!

    :-)

  95. Doug Cotton says:

    The article states: “renewal of ice-age conditions would render a large fraction of the world’s major food-growing areas inoperable, and so would inevitably lead to the extinction of most of the present human population.” Well, well! In 20,000 years or more when the next glaciial period sets in we just might have improved those real agricultural greenhouses. We may have multistorey hydroponic installations with mirrors catching sunlight, and perhaps a few chickens thrown in for good measure. Beef might be a luxury, but that will be the case due to population explosion anyway. Perhaps the simplest way out would be the end of the world – God only knows.

  96. higley7 says:

    Shhhh . . . It’l be our little secret – N2 and O2 are the real greenhouse gases as they cannot shed heat as IR when they are warmed by conduction. CO2 and water vapor are IR (energy) leaks that convert heat energy to IR at night while there is no sunlight = cooling. During the day, it’s a basic wash as CO2’s IR to heat energy contribution is minimal as it works both ways. At night it’s one way!!! So, the secret is that CO2 causes a bit of cooling and more would mean . . .

  97. higley7 says:

    To stuartlynne: “Precautionary Principle” is evil as it means you should do nothing new as it has not been tried before and you never, simply cannot know for sure, the consequences. In other words, never have children, as you have no idea of the outcome of all of your time, effort, and energy input.

    We would have no modern medicine, no modern technology, no nuclear medicine, etc. At what point should we freeze our ascendency from disease and poverty and pretend that everything is fine and dandy?

  98. TRM says:

    I wish but I think humans are once again subject to their own self importance. CO2 will not save us from another ice age. Water vapor might but how do you generate that much water vapor when 99.9% is naturally occuring? Oh yea geo-engineering again. Bad idea. Might be needed to prevent another ice age but it better have brakes and a reverse gear or we’ll do ourselves in.

  99. George says:

    Doug Cotton:

    30ky would be a very long interglacial. There hasn’t been one that long as far as I know. I believe the longest interglacial was one about 600kya that was something like 13ky in duration. The shortest was less than 10ky, probably closer to 7 or 8. We are getting close to being the longest interglacial in history, part of that is due to insolation, we are due to head into a period of somewhat INCREASING insolation due to the way the various cycles add together.

  100. Lance of BC says:

    Well like it’s said “There’s no fool like an old fool”.

  101. Bill Illis says:

    If you want see the Milankovitch Cycles and the ice ages over the last 800,000 years, here it is.

    http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/8735/milankovitch800k.png

    You should be able to tell the Milankovitch Cycles are not anywhere close to as regular as people think.

    We need a really good downturn to kick us into an ice age and then 2 or 3 really good upturns to break the back of the glaciers. One really good downturn will keep is in an ice age for 100,000 years because so much ice builds up that a single upturn (or even 2 or 3) cannot melt the ice back enough to put us into an interglacial. Glaciers can reflect up to 80% of the sunlight which is the real key issue. Once they get started, reflecting up to 80% of the sunlight, they are tough to melt back (see Greenland which is really too far south to have glaciers in at least the southern half).

    Otherwise, the Milankovitch Cycles do not change the summer solar insolation by enough to put glaciers in New York, Chicago or even Iqaluit. It is actually a very, very small change – like a 100 kms. There should be more than enough summer sun to melt all the snow and ice as far north as Ellesmere Island, even in the deepest downturns of the Milankovitch Cycles. It is the far, far north where the snow and ice barely melts in the summer now, that it can make a difference. At 75N.

    CO2 has nothing to do with it.

  102. gallopingcamel says:

    I loved Hoyle’s books and his theory of “Continuous Creation”. He was entertaining, contrarian and a fighter to the end. Unto death he fought the “Big Bang” theory.

    Sadly he was wrong about CO2 staving off the next Ice Age even though he has acolytes like David Archer pushing the same idea:
    http://geosci.uchicago.edu/~archer/reprints/archer.2005.trigger.pdf

    You are going to love Figure 3. Ain’t it amazing what models can be made to show! What a shame that it is fantasy or I would be buying another SUV and one each for my six kids.

    Fred Hoyle was right about one thing. We need all the global warming we can get.

  103. gallopingcamel says:

    Bill Illis,
    Amen to all that.

    When it comes to central Greenland the ice ain’t melting because it is 3,000 metres thick so thanks to the adiabatic lapse rate (phoeey to RTEs and CO2) the temperature averages -29 Centigrade.

  104. Steve P says:

    George says:
    January 8, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    “30ky would be a very long interglacial. There hasn’t been one that long as far as I know.”

    The Sangamonian Stage, also known as the Sangamon interglacial, is the name used by Quaternary geologists to designate the last interglacial period in North America from 125,000—75,000 years ago, a period of 0.05 million years. The Sangamonian Stage precedes the Wisconsinan (Wisconsin) Stage and follows the Illinoian Stage in North America.[1][2][3]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sangamonian_%28stage%29

    During the Sangamonian, N. America was home to a wide variety of megafauna and other exotic mammals. These include types of lions, cheetah, bears, elephants, sloths, horses and camels, all now extinct.

  105. dp says:

    Obviously CO2 in the atmosphere is now so thick it is acting as a conductor of surface heat away from the surface, sending it to the upper atmosphere. The tripping point was in 1998. The heat trapping characteristic of CO2 has phase shifted to that of a heat conduit that is transporting our life giving warmth to the dead places between the galaxies.

    We need to do all we can to reduce CO2 – it’s for the children! Yes – it’s worse than we thought. Snowball Earth! OMG! We’re all going to die. Meh.

  106. wermet says:

    I find this article to be a quite perplexing addition to WUWT…

    On the one hand, as has been pointed out repeatedly by the skeptics (myself included), CO2 is only a minor greenhouse gas. How can increasing this gas delay a glaciation event but not be a major contributor to AGW?

    On the other hand, as has been pointed out in earlier comments, glaciation events occur at times of maximum atmospheric CO2 content. Can increasing CO2 content drive us into an early glaciation event?

    We appear to live in interesting times. The shrill voices of doom and alarm surround us on all sides. I for one do not wish to join the alarmist choirs either on the warmist nor coolist side. Let’s let true empirical science determine how the world works, not computer models. We have data records covering only a relatively short time period, that are spacially sparse and inconsistently distributed, and are poorly instrumented. Using this data, no one can really discover what is driving environmental changes. We need high quality, meaningful, long-term climatic data to be collected. Only then can we make any intelligent, balanced decisions regarding the management our global environment.

  107. Axel says:

    This is all rubbish. Anthropogenic CO2 DOES NOT control the temperature of the Planet.

    Sir Fred Hoyle was 84 when he wrote this paper, and probably not in full possession of his faculties. Certainly he was unaware of recent research results such as the cloud experiments of Svensmark, Kirkby et al, and the radiation budget satellite experiments of Lindzen, Choi et al. Then the Solar evidence from Balunas, Soon et al. There is absolutly NO EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE for the so called Man-Made Greenhouse effect. The whole thing is based on Models. It is a giant Sham and in fact a Fiasco of Fraudulence.

    See the videos by Willie Soon & Richard Lindzen at Video Wall #1 at the website linked to Axel.

  108. Ray says:

    Well, instead of tiny mirrors in space to reflect solar radiation, we might need to send tiny lenses to get more energy to earth.

  109. Doug Cotton says:

    George – I was basing the length of interglacial periods on the plot in this item http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_glaciation

  110. Matter says:

    Don’t be ridiculous. I’ve been reading your posts for years and know I KNOW that CO2 can’t cause significant warming. How could it stop an entire ice age?

  111. Dodgy Geezer says:

    @Contrari says:

    “…Behold the world’s scaremongers reversing their predictions. It is just a matter of changing a little sign, after all….”

    From the politicians point of view it’s all pretty irrelevant. Watch how easily they change into taxing low-CO2 activity, and setting up minimum levels of emission which must be exceeded for any new energy interchange process. And subsidies to encourage inefficient energy conversion with lots of heat loss….

  112. John Marshall says:

    Since man’s input of so called GHG’s is but 3% of the total CO2 natural production then I find the Hoyle statement rubbish.

  113. MieScatter says:

    wermet: it is indeed confusing. This is because in this article WUWT is referencing the peer reviewed scientific literature, where greenhouse warming has been demonstrated and is almost universally accepted.

    The other articles you’ve read telling you that CO2 can’t cause much (if any) warming have largely been blog opinion pieces and are not peer reviewed scientific work.

  114. Kelvin Vaughan says:

    Alexander Feht says:

    January 8, 2012 at 10:13 am

    Fred Hoyle was right not only about this…

    I agree with you, Light looses energy travelling through the black matter of space for millions of years and therefor red shifts! That’s why the further out you look the bigger the red shift.

  115. john e fisk says:

    So basically its anybody’s guess what the future will be?
    Hot, Cold, Temperate only time will be the judge.

  116. Doug Cotton says:
    January 8, 2012 at 5:33 pm
    If what we are talking about is really glacial cycles, then it appears that, for the last million years or so, the predominant cycle has been of about 100,000 years periodicity, with roughly 70,000 years glacial and 30,000 years interglacial in each cycle. We are about 10,000 years into the current interglacial period.

    The simulation above (01:57 pm) I did, can be compared with the Vostok data for 1 Million years and is based on the known solar photon diffusion time of 2/377.137 ky from the center of the Sun to the surface. Resonant modes let the Sun ringing in the whole solar system.
    The cycle times of the modes are : tn = pow(n,-2.0) * 377.134 [ky], were n is the mode number.

    n time [ky]
    ==========
    1 377.13
    2 94.28
    3 41.127
    4 23.535
    4.5 18.623
    ==========
    These time cycles can be found also on other places.. But there are some more modes ringing the Sun:
    http://volker-doormann.org/images/bolshakov_peak_1.gif
    http://volker-doormann.org/images/bolshakov_plot_modes.jpg
    (Credits to Dr. Bolshakov )

    A simple summation of these saw tooth modes results in the simulation above.

    Science discusses facts.

    V.

  117. Chris Wright says:

    Alan Statham says:
    January 8, 2012 at 10:47 am
    “You have spent years denying in the face of all the evidence that CO2 has any effect on global temperatures….”
    What evidence? Despite steadily rising CO2 there’s been no global warming in this century. The Mann Hockey Stick is completely discredited and shown to be fraudulent, as demonstrated by the work of McIntyre and McKitrick, and dramatically confirmed by a Climategate2 email (Mann’s method generates hockey sticks even if random data is fed in). There is overwhelming historical and scientific evidence that the world was warmer both in the Medieval and Roman periods. Warming in the last century was inevitable as the world was emerging from the Little Ice Age. The ice cores show no sign of warming caused by CO2 (it shows the precise opposite). Climate models only have forecasting skill for climate that has already happened – I wonder why? Predictions made by AGW climate models are contradicted by the real world. Indeed, as demonstrated by Lindzen recently, the trend of infra red emissions back into space is actually of the opposite sign compared to the AGW prediction. If climate science had not been corrupted by money and politics, AGW would be dead, just like previous ‘concensus’ theories (e.g. that continents are static and cannot move).
    I’m proud to be a sceptic. I believe that warming is far, far more preferable to cooling, and that during warm periods mankind has prospered. It’s when the world gets colder that we have problems e.g. the Dark Ages and the fall of entire civilisations. I also believe that CO2 has a negligible affect on the climate, and that it has been a huge benefit, being one reason why the world grows more food than ever before.
    The bad news? The 20th century warming period may be coming to an end and many of us, or our children, will live to see a sustained period of cooling or even the start of a new Little Ice Age. What happens may well be determined by the state of the sun, and CO2 will have a negligible effect. To put it simply: Nature will continue to do what Nature has been doing for millions of years.
    Chris

  118. Joules Verne says:

    re; Fred Hoyle

    I don’t think he got everything right. For instance it’s difficult to ignore the rough timing of interglacial periods and correlation with Milankovitch cycles.

    I believe that “perfect storms” are what determine the precise timing. Milankovitch cycles line up to produce a minimum temperature diffence between NH winter and summer. This is favorable for glacial expansion because any temperature below 32F will prevent ice melt so there’s no advantage for the glacier in winter temperatures colder than 32F. In the summer however every additional degree above freezing accelerates ice melt. The NH is the sensitive hemisphere because it has twice the land mass of the SH and year-round ice cover is easier to establish on land. There’s also a positive feedback as ice extent increases global albedo increases which fosters even more ice formation.

    So what I think happens is that Milankovitch cycles, volcanic eruptions, AMDO, PDO, and perhaps solar cycles (a la Svensmark), all conspire into a perfect storm to begin or end interglacial periods. Some of these things are cyclical but others appear random but over a period of several thousand years when the Milankovitch cycle is near the optimum for glaciers and all the other cyclical factors are lined up with it one or a few random but inevitable volcanic eruptions happen which temporarily cool the globe a few degrees and that’s the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

    So anthropogenic CO2 emission probably isn’t enough to guarantee no end to interglacial conditions but it must at least provide a larger safety margin i.e. the perfect storm must be more perfect than otherwise. If anthropogenic warming extends through the peak of the Milankovitch cycle (still a few thousand years in the future) then it might be enough to make the Holocene interglacial persist for another 100,000 years until the Milankovitch cycle comes full circle to another peak.

  119. Allan MacRae says:

    We wrote this about ice ages in 2002 at
    http://www.apegga.com/members/Publications/peggs/Web11_02/kyoto_pt.htm

    This PEGG article remains more scientifically realistic than anything produced since then by the IPCC or acolytes of the Global Warming Cause. Thanks to my co-authors, Sallie and Tim.

    Excerpt about ice ages :

    Climate Is Always Changing

    The only constant about climate is change. For as long as Earth has existed, natural climate changes have occurred and will continue. Change occurs at many scales, from gradual variation over millions of years, to rapid climate shifts in a decade or less. The question is how to distinguish between natural climate variation and possible change caused by human activity.

    During the past two million years, the Earth has been as ice-age cold as it has ever been, experiencing more than 30 glaciations. In the past 800,000 years, the pattern has been approximately 100,000 years of extensive glaciation, interspersed with warmer interglacials of around 15,000 years. By studying climate changes through these previous cycles, we surmise that the next ice age is less than 5,000 years ahead. At that time, large portions of North America will be buried under kilometres of ice.
    (end of excerpt)

    Regrettably, I doubt that humanmade CO2 emissions will have any impact on delaying the next ice advance. I have seen no evidence that CO2 is a significant driver of global warming. Increased atmospheric CO2 may even be a result of natural warming, not a cause.

    This is the excerpt about the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and Little Ice Age (LIA):

    Record of Surface Temperature

    The Earth has been much warmer and colder in the past, before we started burning fossil fuels. From about 900 to 1300 AD, during the Medieval Warm Period, the Earth was warmer than it is today. In the 20th century the global average surface temperature rose about 0.6º C, as measured by thermometry, after a 500-year cool period called the Little Ice Age.
    (end of excerpt)

    The point is, we have known these facts for decades, and we have been systematically scammed by the IPCC and acolytes of the AGW Cause.

    The IPCC tried, through the false (and apparently fraudulent – see CG1 & CG2) Mann hockey stick papers, to eliminate the MWP and LIA from the historical record.

    It is time to abolish the IPCC and all the wasteful government departments and agencies it has spawned. Our governments are still squandering many billions on global warming fraud. Even the most obtuse politicians can read the Climategate (CG1 & CG2) emails and see that they have been scammed.

  120. Blade says:

    George E. Smith; [January 8, 2012 at 1:19 pm] says:

    “Well we ARE in a pickle. Do we even have enough coal and oil to warm the place up to fight off the evil ice follies ?

    This is amazing, not only do the experts know that it is for sure that we are accelerating the recovery from the last ice age; but they also are sure that we are holding off the next one.

    Should we ban coal burning all together, so that we have some left for the fire when the next deep freeze hits ?”

    Profound question indeed! You have thought up the only logical justification for Carbon micromanagement that I have ever seen. The fact that it is a complete inversion of the idiotic CAGW ‘warm is bad’ religion, is also very telling.

    Bill Illis [January 8, 2012 at 5:07 pm] says:

    “We are at least 50,000 years away from the next ice age.

    The ice ages start when the snow and ice does not melt in the summer at 75N any longer – on Baffin Island, northern Greenland, the Beaufort Sea. Small glaciers build up and this kicks off the ice albedo feedback which puts us into a full-blown ice age.”

    Doug Cotton [January 8, 2012 at 5:33 pm] says:

    “The long and the short of it seems to be that we should not worry about there being another glacial period for at least another 20,000 years, or possibly somewhat more than that. It seems fairly likely that mankind will have the technology to cope with such well before then.”

    Very true as long as humans don’t screw this up. Let us not underestimate the sickness found in the minds of the modern doomsayer, our AGW cultists. Just imagine a massive geo-engineering project building massive barriers so that ice cannot blow out of the Arctic. Or worse, one that connects South America to Antarctica disrupting the circumpolar current. Imagine a successful attempt to reduce atmospheric CO2 into the 200 ppm’s. Imagine painting everything white. The possibilities are endless. And unlike CO2 in the parts per million, the results would be catastrophic.

  121. Blade says:

    wermet [January 8, 2012 at 9:28 pm] says:

    “I find this article to be a quite perplexing addition to WUWT…

    On the one hand, as has been pointed out repeatedly by the skeptics (myself included), CO2 is only a minor greenhouse gas. How can increasing this gas delay a glaciation event but not be a major contributor to AGW?”

    Not perplexing! The articles and topics you see here do not necessarily voice the opinions of Anthony or WUWT readers! They are articles. You read them. You decide for yourself. You sound like you expect Anthony to only post articles that fits the meme of WUWT, whatever that is.

    MieScatter [January 9, 2012 at 2:54 am] says:

    “wermet: it is indeed confusing. This is because in this article WUWT is referencing the peer reviewed scientific literature, where greenhouse warming has been demonstrated and is almost universally accepted.

    The other articles you’ve read telling you that CO2 can’t cause much (if any) warming have largely been blog opinion pieces and are not peer reviewed scientific work.”

    Not confusing at all. We have greenhouses all over my area and they do indeed work, and my peers will back me up. But that is not what you meant at all, is it?

    Perhaps you had a repeated typographic error above substituting greenhouse warming for Anthropogenic CO2 warming? You definitely had a repeated typographic error above substituting peer for pal reviewed. Or is it Team reviewed?

    Likewise, almost universally accepted only flies when you limit your sample to the handful of hardcore nutjobs that call themselves ‘Climate Scientists’. The bolded part of your comment is ridiculous. Try taking a poll of real Scientists today using that statement and get back to us.

    Al Gored [January 8, 2012 at 2:21 pm] says:

    “The Brits should stick to comedy and rock-and-roll. They are good at that.”

    Agree on the rock-and-roll and other music. But isn’t British Comedy something like American Cheese, French Military, German Humor

    :-) :-) :-)

  122. beng says:

    *****
    Bill Illis says:
    January 8, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    We are at least 50,000 years away from the next ice age.
    *****

    We can hope. There’s some indication that this IG will be similar to the one (stage?) around 400kya, which IIRC lasted about 1.5 eccentricity cycles (~33 kyrs).

    I agree that the focal point of glaciation will be in the N Canuckian islands. That’s where the permanent yr-round snow/land-ice line is now. When that line moves south significantly, there’s a potential problem looming. Note that a decrease in temp really isn’t needed to cause that, a simple increase in the snow amount there will do fine — as long as it’s enough to survive the summer. Cross our fingers that the high arctic remains quite dry…

  123. mkelly says:

    Blade says:
    January 9, 2012 at 8:09 am
    But isn’t British Comedy something like American Cheese, French Military, German Humor …

    Benny Hill, Monty Python need I say more? ;)

  124. UK dissenter says:

    Wermet’s perplexed, and Axel worries that Prof Hoyle was losing his marbles, when he wrote the paper. I think I can explain why there’s no need for perplexity, and that Fred was clear thinking and combative almost right to the end of his life. His paper, with Wickramasinghe only mentions CO2 to dismiss it, and give no comfort to the huge, rent seeking, AGW ‘team’, who are costing us all dear.

    The paper, by Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe was published in 1999. It explains with beautiful economy, using real quantitative physics (not made-up plausible mush), why CO2 is a minor greenhouse gas (GHG), and water vapour is by far-and-away the dominant GHG. They go on to show that the combined effect of GHGs (mainly water vapour) raise the temperature of the Earth to 292K instead of 245K.

    They dismiss astronomical theories of ice-age causation, such as Milankovitch theory of small oscillations of the tilt of the Earth’s rotation axis to the plane of the ecliptic, or small oscillations in the eccentricity of the Earth’s orbit. Because neither produces enough change in the amount of solar energy incident on the Earth, and could not lead to widespread cooling. They focus on the heat stored in the ocean, and how this might be steadily reduced. Once this has happened, and average rainfall falls below 50cm, small ice crystals form in the upper atmosphere, dramatically increasing the Earth’s albedo, and we’re plunged into another prolonged ice-age.

    And what’s their explanation for ice-ages ending? They’re solution is bolides plummeting into the ocean raising enough water into the atmosphere to increase the greenhouse effect, and eliminate the small water crystals. This seems to me to be the weakest part of their argument. Why should a bolide collide with the Earth on a semi-regular cycle to give Earth a procession of ice-ages and inter-glacials? Even so, the earlier quantitative arguments are elegant, and seem robust (although I am not enough of a physicist to critically examine the detail).

    Whatever the truth of Fred Hoyles ideas, about what precipitated and ended the ice-ages he was completely dismissive of CO2 as a primary driver. In his book “Ice: A chilling scientific forecast of a new Ice Age” (1981) he says “The efficiency of carbon dioxide trap is insensitive to the amount carbon dioxide in the atmosphere: increasing the amount five-fold would scarcely change the trap, in spite of the stories currently being circulated by environmentalists” (page 130)

    And as for Florida University’s notion (link), that slightly increase man-made levels of CO2, will ‘save’ us from the next ice age. I think I can hear Fred snorts of angry laughter coming from his grave.

    Fred Hoyle was an irascible marvel, able to contribute clear, quantitative physics-based ideas in in a wide range of fields outside of his own. His steady state view of the universe may have been wrong, and his idea that ice-ages ended (or started) when a large bolide collided with the earth, may be far-fetched. But whether he was right or wrong, he clearly, very clearly spelt out his thinking, his physical logic and assumptions and it’s all properly quantitative. He’s such a contrast to today pontificating scientific cardinals such as David King and Robert May (ex UK Chief Scientists) who say that it’s all about basic physics, and therefore unquestionable. And that we should all bow down, submit to and worship the ‘scientific truths’, as spoken by the church-of-science, their church. But they never have the ability or the guts to spell it out, and spit it out like Fred did. We live in an age of pompous, political, scientific pigmies.

  125. beng says:

    ****
    Jerker Andersson says:
    January 8, 2012 at 2:49 pm

    But if such fast and massive temperature changes can happen both ways and they are permanent, we certainly dont want a downward spike, I dont think 10C up would be an good idea either though.
    ****

    From our current interglacial state, such a rise isn’t possible — the planet is in “warm” mode. No land glaciers at low-enough latitudes to melt & produce enough albedo change to support it. Greenland & Antarctica’s ice-masses are too large, thick & far poleward to melt very fast.

    If you’re thinking the route that ocean current or atmospheric changes could cause a 10C rise, I don’t see how. The large changes you refer to are often centered in the N Atlantic (Greenland) and presumably produced by Gulf Stream/thermocline changes. Presently the thermocline is in a “warm” state — it historically doesn’t increase any more than it already has during this IG (or any other according to the ice-core history). But the thermocline could certainly shut down or move southward, and 10C drops are certainly possible at any time from a “warm” state.

    So I don’t think there any climatological evidence to think a 10C rise could occur now in this IG. A 10C drop is quite plausible, tho, if at/near the “end”. Fear the cold….

  126. G. Karst says:

    BBC’s Richard Black fields this story as follows:

    Carbon emissions ‘will defer Ice Age
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-16439807

  127. G. Karst says:

    BBC’s Richard Black fields this story as follows:

    Carbon emissions ‘will defer Ice Age’
    By Richard Black
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-16439807

    “We must look to a sustained greenhouse effect to maintain the present advantageous world climate. This implies the ability to inject effective greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, the opposite of what environmentalists are erroneously advocating.”

    I would characterize this as a significant change in meme. GK

  128. Victor Barney says:

    Give it up! As written in Hebrew Scripture, …as long as the earth remains, everthing remains the same… Watch! Caution: Did I mention that only 144,000 from the 12 tribes of Israel will survive, less the Irish? Just saying what is written… Watch!

  129. Robert Brown says:

    Profound question indeed! You have thought up the only logical justification for Carbon micromanagement that I have ever seen.

    Here’s another. In the last ice age, CO_2 levels dropped uncomfortably close to the level at which they can no longer sustain plant life (not enough partial pressure to enable diffusive plant respiration). The cold ocean is quite capable of soaking up almost all the atmospheric CO_2 in the worst case. We might want to be able to burn some then to keep the concentration from dropping below the critical point in 40,000 years or so.

    Personally, as I pointed out at the very end of the

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/01/06/what-we-dont-know-about-energy-flow

    I agree with Fred Hoyle, who is a damn smart guy BTW (although I didn’t know I was “agreeing” when I wrote it as I hadn’t yet gotten to this article:-). We have no evidence for a +5C “superwarm” chaotic attractor in the climate record. We have ample evidence — overwhelming evidence — for a -10C cold (glacial) chaotic attractor in the climate record — the Earth has spent 90% of the last million years or so in cold phase, and only 10% in interglacials like the Holocene. The Holocene is already one of the longest and warmest interglacials of the last half dozen or so, and there is evidence that — outside of the warming associated with the 20th century Grand Solar Maximum (an 11,000 peak in solar activity) — the general trend of the Holocene climate is downward, with the very recent LIA the lowest temperatures of the entire post-Younger Dryas Holocene.

    CAGW is “unlikely”, as we have no reason to think that there is a warm phase to “catastrophically” transition to, and lacking that the evidence is that feedback is negative and CO_2 induced warming will be <1C over the next century, assuming doubling of CO_2. CGC (catastrophic global cooling) is something that we know perfectly well can happen as the cold phase attractor is starkly evident in the paleoclimate record. We know perfectly well that it will happen as the current interglacial cannot possibly be long term stable in a multistable chaotic system with at least two major (bistable) branches (glacial/interglacial). We cannot predict when it will happen because we don’t really have a believable model for ice ages in the first place — they are numerology, not hard science, interference between a half dozen things such that when the stars align just right maybe we make a transition. But in a chaotic bistable system, there are extended ranges of e.g. insolation that can equally well support either bistable phase (with hysteresis). The question then becomes what sorts of events can make up “critical fluctuations” that kick you from one state to the other.

    I think Hoyle is right to fear that we are “close” to cold phase instability — not necessarily where it is inevitable, but to where an extended Maunder Minimum might be enough to kick us over into cold phase. In which case he is also (IMO) probably correct if he asserts that anthropogenic CO_2 might at least help prevent that from happening, or make it less likely to happen, or delay when it happens, or increase the threshold for the length of an extended cooling period (still in the warm phase) that would do it.

    It won’t make much difference outside of 30-50 years anyway. In 30 years we will be well over in the move away from carbon based fuels globally, whether or not anybody does a damn thing about “carbon” (with e.g. taxes or incentives). It will just be much cheaper to get our energy from things other than carbon-based fuel, so following our miserly noses we’ll stop burning fuel to get energy in the best of capitalistic traditions. By then we might actually have a clue about climate and the sun, as well — at that point we’ll have maybe 60-80 years of good climate data (and much, much better computational models). So if Hoyle is right, by the end of the century we’ll be vulnerable to cold phase transition if CO_2 is the only thing preventing it, although it may be that the warm phase would be stable anyway for another few centuries.

    Where he is dead right is that we should fear the cold way, way more than we should fear warm phase, or even a superwarm phase. Warm is good. Cold is baaaad, very very baaaaaad.

    rgb

  130. Robert Brown says:

    So I don’t think there any climatological evidence to think a 10C rise could occur now in this IG. A 10C drop is quite plausible, tho, if at/near the “end”. Fear the cold….

    So very well said, sir, took the words literally right out of my mouth, on both counts.

    The Younger Dryas stands as evidence, BTW, that a cold phase transition can occur rather quickly, possibly driven by the freshening of the Arctic Ocean (interrupting the “Oceanic Conveyor Built”. Segue to the recent WUWT post on the recent freshening of at least part of the arctic…

    rgb

  131. SteveSadlov says:

    Nothing we can realistically do will prevent the end of the interglacial.

  132. Steven says:

    So it sounds like global warming is not the worse thing that can happen, an ice age is!!

  133. Marlow Metcalf says:

    I seem to recall hearing weather forecasters saying something like “It was hot today but will cool tonight because of low humidity” or “it will stay hot because of high humidity”. I have never heard an overnight or three day forecast based on high or low co2. Have you?
    If somebody could find one I look forward to seeing it in Tips & Notes.
    This retort is best if said in an innocent and thoughtful manner.

  134. George E. Smith; says:

    Ice age caused the Bushmen of Africa to have to migrate to the North, out of Africa towards the middle east (droughts forced the herds north). They went by land to Australia, but left not a trace of their tracks, because they followed the coasts to India/Indonesia/New Guinea/Australia, and those land bridged coasts are now 200 feet or so deep under water, hence the lack of tracks.
    An ice age also drove some folks from Tadjikistan north east through Siberia to Alaska, to become the ancestors of ALL native Americans. It is thought that as few as 20 individuals may have survived the journey to the Americas; but their bushman ancestors of ALL of us, were survivalists, so perhaps equipped with the skills and cunning to evade the Sabre Toothed Tigers, and Dire Wolves that might have wiped a lesser people out.

    The Chuckchi of NE Siberia may travel in family groups as small as 6-12 with only their reindeer herd to keep them alive, and push them along as the lichens under the snow, are depleted by the herd.

    We moderns probably aren’t nearly smart enough to survive an ice age, as our Bushman or Chuckchi ancestors were.

    Those Bushmen pre-Abos needed to follow the coast, as their dark skin would have done them all in for lack of Vitamin d as they moved north to lesser sunlight. Sea food provided them a rich source of vitamin D. When the East/West split came, to send them north into Europe, their skin had to get lighter once they got away from the Mediterranean and its seafood, which led to beautiful blue eyed blondes in Scandinavia. So are we really in control of our destiny, or does Mother Gaia plan it all ahead ?

  135. Shooter says:

    LOL, not according to Yahoo!:

    http://ca.news.yahoo.com/next-ice-age-not-likely-1-500-years-150925913.html

    I wonder, when will they stop playing at “scientist”?

  136. Steve P says:

    George E. Smith; says:
    January 9, 2012 at 5:08 pm
    “An ice age also drove some folks from Tadjikistan north east through Siberia to Alaska, to become the ancestors of ALL native Americans”

    I’m not so sure about that, George.

    The Clovis (stone weapon) technology has been hypothesized by some to derive from the similar Solutrian weapon technology of Europe.

    The Solutrean hypothesis proposes that peoples from Europe may have been among the earliest settlers in the Americas, as evidenced by similarities in stone tool technology of the Solutrean culture from prehistoric Europe to that of the later Clovis tool-making culture found in the Americas
    [..]
    The hypothesis rests upon particular similarities in Solutrean and Clovis technology that have no known counterparts in Eastern Asia, Siberia or Beringia, areas from which or through which early Americans are known to have migrated.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solutrean_hypothesis
    (I know Wikipedia is not always a reliable source, but it is a good starting point. I acknowledge that the linked Wiki article, above, includes some strong counter-arguments to this hypothesis, but that’s not the end of it. Read on, please)

    Beyond that, it has now been fairly reliably established that a pre-Clovis settlement of the Americas took place:

    “People Were Chipping Stone Tools in Texas More Than 15,000 Years Ago.”
    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=texas-stone-tools-pre-clovis

    Even more startling, IMO, is the evidence from Monte Verde

    Archaeological evidence shows that people arrived at Monte Verde about 1,800 years before the time that the Bering Straight Land Bridge would have become passable in 13,000 bp. This leaves traveling down the western coast of the Americas as the most plausible explanation for the earliest inhabitants of Chile. Paleoecological evidence of the coastal landscape further supports this model in its ability to sustain human life

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monte_Verde

    Most plausible? I dunno about that, either.

    More plausible, to me at least, is that these earlier settlers arrived by boat from points unknown. Monte Verde is way down south on/near the coast of Chile. We humans have happy feet, it is true, but a journey like that – passing through some very desirable real estate in the process – seems to be, well, a traipse too far.

    There are many tantalizing clues in this mystery, but at this point, I think the real answer is that we just don’t yet know whence came these early voyagers.

    Food for thought.

  137. George E. Smith; says:

    “”””” Steve P says:

    January 9, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    George E. Smith; says:
    January 9, 2012 at 5:08 pm
    “An ice age also drove some folks from Tadjikistan north east through Siberia to Alaska, to become the ancestors of ALL native Americans”

    I’m not so sure about that, George.

    The Clovis (stone weapon) technology has been hypothesized by some to derive from the similar Solutrian weapon technology of Europe. “””””

    Look up the PBS program: “The Journey of Man”, which documents using Y chromosome genetic markers, which propagate unchanged from father to son, (sans misteaks). The research shows that both Europeans and Americans have a common ancestor from the middle east/Iran/Turkey region, before the split that sent the NA indians ancestor to Tadjikistan, while the European ancestor took off the other way.

    If Clovis points match European weapons, they must have originated with the common ancestors of both lineages.

  138. Meyer says:

    Since “ice ages” appear to be the norm for several million years now, it would be more helpful to know exactly what causes these temporary hot spells. Then we can tax whatever it is – solar activity tax? – and ensure the Earth will freeze back to its natural state. We can’t just stop burning fuel and hope it’s enough to freeze the Earth. We could be stuck in this heat wave for another thousand years if we don’t act by 2017!

  139. Steve P says:

    George E. Smith; says:
    January 10, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    Thanks for the reply and pointer to the YDNA research, which I haven’t had much time to review beyond skimming most of the Amazon comments about the DVD. I’d prefer to read the book. Possibly related is the recent (to me anyway) NOVA special on DNA switches in what once had been called “junk” DNA.

    Whether or not the science is settled, or has been applied properly is an open question, imo, but beyond noting that the Clovis-Salurian connection still needs claification, I’ll let you have the last word on the matter, at least for the time being. (Iconoclasts never rest for too long.)

    Cheers
    -sp

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